Ostrich Syndrome


Party Spirit series #7: During "Close Quarters"

Bodie's a funny mixture; don't know what to make of him half the time. Sometimes he's so bloody cynical and unfeeling you'd think anything the least bit emotional'd be completely beyond him, and then you catch him wiping his eye surreptitiously after that scene in THE RAILWAY CHILDREN when Jenny Agutter calls out: "Daddy, my Daddy!" I know it gets to me every time as well, but that's neither here nor there.

Some people don't know how to take him, and most of 'em wouldn't have him at any price. He gets up my nose, make no mistake about that; drives me so wild I could kill him... but I won't let anyone else do it.

Like I said, he's a funny mixture. It was just over a year into our partnership when we started fooling around together the odd times we felt the urge and the birds weren't to hand, and usually he's all smug afterwards, a sleek and well-fed look like a cat that's just had the family canary for its mid-morning snack. We don't talk about it to each other of course, though I'm not sure why. It certainly isn't that I'm ashamed of it and I don't think he is either, not exactly conventional thinkers either of us, but somehow at the start we didn't discuss it and we never have since. We don't even refer to it obliquely in the way we look at one another. Outside it actually happening it's as if it never does except in some other place, another time. Like a dream that just happens to be real.

We don't even talk while it's happening either; just seem to know it's wanted or needed and get on with it without a lot of fuss.

At least, it was without a lot of fuss--until the night Bodie almost ran out on me afterwards. I didn't know what I'd done, lay awake all of twenty minutes puzzling about it and not coming up with anything. It was a longish time before we got it together again too. Well into autumn.

In between all the excitement around the time Tommy McKay bought it Bodie had so many birds one after the other I could hardly keep track of 'em. There was Emma and Judy and Liz and Tessa and Michelle and the lovely Julia. Poor old Bodie, he often loses a girlfriend as a result of his job but seldom as spectacularly as the lovely Julia.

She didn't even want to know about looking after him when he came out of hospital once they'd cleared up the infection in his left hand--trust that bastard Meyer to have stepped in something nasty before he tried to crush Bodie's hand for him.

Guess who was the muggins who took him home and looked after him.

Well, it was only fair I suppose; he'd done as much for me when I did my arm in that time.

He didn't complain a lot about his hands but it didn't take a genius to know he was pissed off about the whole thing, plus being more than a little narked with the Cow for not letting him go back to work when he'd originally wanted to.

"Bloody dangerous, if you ask me, being off duty," he grumbled in one of his more illogical moments. "Out there with no back up except a ruddy useless bird... I'd even've been pleased to see you, sunshine, I can tell you."

"Thanks for your vote of confidence!" I took the plate he'd been trying to dry up for the last five minutes away from him and the towel, and finished it off myself. The rate he was moving it'd be midnight before we were done and I was tired even if he wasn't. Some of us were doing a full day's work for our pay.

"The old idiot said I needed both hands--goes too much by the rule book, if you ask me."

Rulebook? I let out a snort of derision that rattled the windows in their frames.

"You'll just have to prove him wrong then, won't you!" I added sarcastically.

He quirked an eyebrow. "Thought I'd already done that."

"Then maybe he'll let you go back tomorrow--going for your check-up in the morning, aren't you?"

"Yeah." He flexed his hands. He might even have fooled someone who doesn't know him as well as I do that the left one didn't hurt.

"Not even any good to the birds at the moment," he said gloomily, acknowledging my grin.

"Feeling deprived, are you?"

He shot me a look; if I was uncharitable I'd call it edgy.

I tut-tutted. "Not feeling yourself either, are you!" I said brightly.

"I can't. With bandages this thick I can't feel a thing."

"What thing?"


"Whose thing were you wanting to feel?"

He gave me a droopy-lidded look, sneezed and wiped his nose on his bandage. Not a pretty sight.

"You getting a cold?" I demanded suspiciously. "I'm not sure I've got any aspirins but there might be some lemon juice in the fridge."

"Stop fussing, will you! It was only a sneeze. I've been pale and interesting long enough. I'm not having a cold as well."

"Wish I could be decisive about things like that," I said wistfully. "You going to bed now or do you want to sit up and watch that film?

"Bed. I'm fed up with watching the telly."

I came out of the bathroom to see him standing at the mirror in my spare room, fumbling with his shirt buttons; I went in and brushed his fingers aside, taking over. I never have been able to watch somebody botching a job.

"What are you doing?" he asked peevishly as I peered inside the opening.

"Just checking. Yes, I thought so. You've got a T-shirt on under this."

"Well, it's cold--or hadn't you noticed?"

To be honest I hadn't, but then I'm not such a chilly mortal as Bodie is. Sometimes I think he ought to have been born a lizard and spend his days splayed out on a brick wall in the tropics. Come to think of it, he'd've made a good lounge lizard if he'd been born at the right time.

He'd been fretful all evening; not aloud because he knows damn well I won't put up with it, but I could see he was feeling depressed. He hates being idle and though he reads more than you'd think--being someone who takes a perverse pleasure in pretending he needs hyphens between each syllable--there's only so much time in a day you can spend with your nose stuck in a book, and there'd been too many days like that recently for his taste.

"'s funny, isn't it," I mused, "when you're up to your eyes in it, the idea of having a few days off sounds like sheer, unadulterated heaven."

"Having anything off'd be sheer heaven right now," he said unguardedly.

I looked at him. He looked at me.

He held up his bandages ruefully.

"Wasn't thinking of you using your hands," I told him. I put a lot of meaning into it.

For a second I could have sworn he panicked but I didn't give him time to think about it. The bed was there and we were both short on girl-time lately and I for one was ripe'n ready.

I got him undressed, using my fingers on each little inch of newly bared skin until I had him squirming and desperate. I could tell I'd got him going even without looking down at his prick because his nostrils were flared and quivering in the sexiest way, and he kept givin' little growls of frustration at the cock-up he was making of getting my jeans off, since you need your fingers in full working order to get my buttons and zips undone. He didn't say anything, but his eyes have always been very expressive.

"'s OK," I reassured him, "I'll do it. 'ang on a minute. Get your hands out of the way, will you, you great wally."

He was stroking at my ribcage in a dedicated sort of way and his tongue kept licking at his mouth and I kept thinking of that mouth on me and getting hotter'n hotter'n...

I wrestled him to the bed and gave him a shove, forgetting those ruddy hands until he landed on the left one and began yelling blue murder at me. I can be a thoughtless sod at times and I was kicking myself even before he started in on the screams.

"Christ, Bodie, I'm sorry. You OK? I forgot..."

"Forgot? Forgot? Of all the stupid prats..."

"Tha'ss me. When it's better you can thump me all you like with it."

"I'll take you up on that," he snarled, struggling up onto his elbow and nursing the poor, abused object.

"Come'ere," I said. "Kiss it better for you." And I took his hand--resisting me a bit, it was--and gentled it with softly pressed kisses, being as careful as I knew how.

He stopped going into the question of my parentage and started worrying about my mental competence instead but I took no notice. After all, I've been wondering about his since the day we met.

"Shut up, Bodie," I told him, intending to say I could think of better things for him to do with his mouth, but he interrupted me, giving me one of those 'it's a big, cruel world and you're the rottenest thing in it' looks.

"Not allowed to talk now," he said pathetically.

I ought to have been sick laughing; found myself going to slush inside instead. It's been that way with me since the hot summer day I realised I could've killed him if things had gone even the least little bit wrong and that I'd miss him like hell if he wasn't around any more.

Bodie matters to me.

"You talk all you like," I agreed, thinking it was high time anyway. We'd battled it out in sweaty silence long enough and it had been getting a bit too rough for my liking too. In any case, sex is always sweeter for a few honied words now and then.

Of course, once I said that he just lay there and looked at me and didn't utter a dicky bird.

I looked back, liking what I saw.

He's got a lovely body, strong and muscled without being muscle-bound, and gorgeous, cream coloured skin that's made for touching. Living velvet. I told him so and his mouth came open in the daftest way, making him look thoroughly moronic. I told him that too.

"And your bones stick out nicely as well," I said, running an affectionate palm over one protruding hip. "Gives me something to hang on to."

His stomach was soft after the hardness of that bone, with a triangular pattern of hair arrowing down from above his navel, contrasts that I explored for several minutes, watching the effect I was having on his prick which had lost all its enthusiasm when he fell on the hand.

I'd never watched another bloke getting hard before and it intrigued me; same as me and yet not, just as his prick is like any other bloke's and still completely different. Having been fascinated by female anatomy from an early age--I was one of those kids who used to like crawling under the table while the grown-ups were eating so I could have a sneaky look up the women's skirts--it had never occurred to me I could find a bloke just as good to look at and, as Bodie didn't seem to mind, I went on staring at him, taking a good long butcher's.

He's strong, is Bodie, and although he'd never say it aloud he's proud of that strength, and somehow his cock slowly lifting between his thighs to arch up over the flatness of his belly underlined both the strength and the pride.

"You're beautiful," I said, helpless to stop the words, and I bent and laid my cheek against the hot length of him. Incredible sensation, skin like satin and yet rock hard, and he smelled clean and warm. Without thinking I let my tongue hunger over him and the moaning noise he was making got louder and he began pushing against my lips, the head of his cock soft and tender. Vulnerable.

I licked it, liking the salt taste of the seeping droplet lying in ambush for me; I was silently pleading for more as I smoothed long, lush pathways up and around him, holding him still for me with one hand and caressing the warm, furry bundle of his balls with the other.

Oh yes, sunshine, yes. I'll do it for you. Come here and let me get at you. Take you in. Deeper. Deeper. Mmm, yes, another taste, another push. Ring you with my hand, shall I? Make it a tunnel for you and a soft, wet cave of my mouth. Like that, do you, Bodie? Is it good, fucking my mouth?

Yes, it's good! Must be; all that heaving about and the noise you're making and the desperate way you're pressing at my head with your hands...

Bodie-love, you'll hurt your...

Stillness, and a throb in my mouth, and the sudden spurt of warmth over my tongue, salty and unexpected and liquid silk.

Christ, Bodie, I'm gonna...

I had, just at the feel of him coming.

I rolled onto my back and lay and looked at the ceiling for a long time, not daring to think.

I felt him sit up and reach for me, even felt his surprise when he found me limp; I knew when he found the wet patch I'd made too. That bit cheered me up although I was still embarrassed at going over the top like that.

He stretched out beside me, propped up on his elbow, and I could feel his eyes boring into me. Eventually I opened one of mine and stared back.

"Thought I was going to do that for you," he said conversationally.

I shrugged, carefully noncommittal. "You complainin'?"

He shook his head, equally restrained. I could read nothing from his face and the possibilities of what he was feeling ran all the way from satisfied to disgusted. I didn't know what I felt either.

I hauled myself upright, muttering something fatuous about having to get up in good time, collected my clothes without looking at him and made for the door, grateful that this flat was one of the few I'd had with a spare room. The last thing I needed was to try to act as if nothing had happened while forced into intimate proximity with my partner for the rest of the night.

My bed was cold and I slid into it quickly. Went to sleep quickly too, which surprised me.

I was afraid we'd be awkward together in the morning, but it was just as if it hadn't occurred, just like it always is. I helped him bath and dress after breakfast, ready to face the doctor at HQ. He insisted on wearing the suit he'd brought with him, a fancy pearl-grey number that made him look like something out of a novel by Scott Fitzgerald.

"You trying to impress the Cow or something?" I enquired, having finally given in as being easier than arguing it out with him.

"Just showin' you up, mate, that's all. And you can redo that tie, I'm not walking around with the underneath bit hanging down over my waistband!"

I sighed, long-suffering and put-upon, and redid the tie.

Did I say it was just like it never happened?

Well, it was except for one thing. In the lift on the way up to Cowley's office from the surgery I caught him looking at my mouth. I suppose I must have raised an eyebrow or twitched or something because he looked at me very solemnly and then reached out and brushed my lips very gently with his thumb.

I was grinning from ear to ear as I knocked on Cowley's door. It's a good job he'll never know why I was looking so happy that morning.

-- THE END --

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