Ten: Making Choices
Daniel studied the contents of his online shopping cart, wondering if he’d bought enough at the BDSM site. Surfing a few more site pages, he pictured Jack and Jason in some of the gear: tied up and driven to frustration. Knowing their reactions made him smile. It was too bad they’d never participate, at least on the receiving end.
With a feeling of guilty pleasure, Daniel paid for his choices and closed the browser. Before going to the BDSM site, he’d thought to get Dylan a going-away present, but he had no idea what to look for–until he’d found the kink store. Though he was coming to know Dylan well enough, and had actually told him he loved him, their relationship was based on sex and on Dylan opening up a new world for him. It seemed only fair that a present should reflect that.
Daniel passed a hand through his hair, feeling a bit of panic, similar to what he’d felt over a month ago: that he was rushing things, or that Dylan, Jack, and Jason were rushing things. Yes, they had dangerous jobs and yes, they had to live life now and not waste a moment, but for cryin’ out loud …
Daniel absently smiled as he caught himself using Jack’s catchphrase, but his focus was still on Dylan, on the relationship, and how the hell did it get so involved so damn fast? All Daniel knew for certain was that he loved three men. Granted, his feelings for Jack and Jason were stronger than they were for Dylan, but they weren’t more important. They were just different.
And it was very bizarre. Once upon a time, it had been hard enough falling in love with one person let alone three. Before he’d met Shau’re, everyone had always left, one way or the other. Technically, that also applied to Shau’re but Daniel couldn’t put her in the same category as the people he’d cared about before her. Not one of them had been that forever kind of love. Sarah could have been that, but his passion for his work overrode his passion for her and he simply hadn’t made the effort. Had it been because he had intuitively sensed she wasn’t “the one”?
Not consciously. He hadn’t been looking for love, or a wife for that matter, but he hadn’t rejected the idea, either. Then along came Shau’re and she had been his first real commitment, his first real love. After she had died, he’d actually thought he was done with love.
Daniel looked over his shoulder from his seat in the kitchen and observed Jack and Jason as they watched a pre-season football game. He’d never thought of having a relationship with them, not even in fantasy. But had it been out of a fear of abandonment, or was it simply due to the atmosphere of his job? It was likely the latter. What had eventually happened was due more to their long-term friendships, perhaps with subconscious intention, than it had to do with his fears. They were like finding the last puzzle pieces of a jigsaw he’d been working on for a long time. Looking at them, his stomach pulled and a rush of warmth spread everywhere. As with Shau’re, his love for them was that forever kind.
So what about Dylan? Daniel wasn’t quite sure yet; his feelings for him were similar to what he had for Jack and Jason. But with Dylan, it was the possibility of more and the desire to find out, despite his damn job. Right now, he felt a bit of apprehension and that damned fear of abandonment, but he ordered himself to dismiss the feelings. This was new territory. He couldn’t afford to make assumptions and rash judgments.
The next day, Daniel came home from the base to a UPS notice tacked on his door. With anticipation, he’d turned around and headed out to the UPS warehouse and picked up the large, rectangular box, but once he’d brought it home and opened it, he stood there staring at the contents on his coffee table with a strange sense of apprehension.
It was one thing to have the cuffs and the cock rings, including that lovely little glans ring he was dying to try out, but the idea of actually owning the other items left him feeling a little … trapped? It was an absurd feeling, one he didn’t understand. Why trapped? He wasn’t set on a course he couldn’t adjust. There was nothing scary about owning new dildos, rings, assorted lubes, and condoms. There was nothing scary about owning a suede paddle or a leather flogger, nothing scary about a ball gag, a pin wheel, metal nipple clamps, wooden clothes pins, leather gauntlets, leather pants and bar vest, and a doggie-style fucking strap. These things fell well under the hardcore radar.
Daniel swallowed, wondering if this was truly what he desired. Was he turned on by it simply because Dylan was, or had this been part of who he was all along and it took someone like Dylan to bring it out of him?
Perhaps the answer was “yes” to both questions, but with it, a “sometimes” on the desire to use them. He could easily picture using all of these things with Dylan, and he could definitely get off using a few of them on Jack and Jason. The doggie-style strap, for example, was something he’d love to try out on Jack. But using all of them in his typical sexual routine? No. They were special items, and he wasn’t comfortable with the idea of turning them into common use.
He picked up the box and took it into the bedroom, leaving it at the foot of his bed so he’d get used to them and get rid of any remaining butterflies. There was one item in the box that he took out and placed on his dresser: a nickel-polished silver cockhead ring. He hoped Dylan would like it.
Stripping down and getting in the shower, Daniel washed quickly, knowing that at any moment, Jack and Jason would be over to get a voyeuristic look at the things he’d bought. It amused him, their contradictive fascination, and he wondered what Jack would think of that strap. Daniel imagined it being used on him instead of the other way around and curled his fingers around his dick, pulling lazily.
The sound of his cell phone ringing pulled him out of the fantasy and he hurriedly finished and stepped out of the shower. With a towel wrapped around his hips, he went to the kitchen and grabbed his cell phone off the table, checking messages. There was a voice mail from Dylan and with a grin, he played it back.
“I hope you’re not at work. I’m on my way down to see you, so please call me back as soon as possible.”
Daniel frowned and hit the button for Dylan’s cell phone. It didn’t even ring twice, which told Daniel that either the man had set his phone in the passenger seat or he was wearing one of those new hands-free devices.
“Tell me you’re not at work,” Dylan said.
“No, I’m at home. Why are you on your way up? I thought we had a date for tomorrow–“
“I’m sorry, but I have to leave in the morning instead of next week.”
Daniel was quiet as he took in the knowledge, accepted it, and then tried to work around it. It didn’t stop him from showing disappointment. “What happened?”
“The boss doesn’t trust anyone but me, that’s what happened,” Dylan said with disgust. “Honestly, I’m not the only decent security man out there. Why the fuck can’t he find one?”
Daniel could hear the frustrated anger and oddly, it made him feel better. “Because he chose you to do that, which is why you’re going up to Vancouver to train that person, remember?”
Dylan growled, making Daniel smile. “I had been preparing for that, but not now, dammit.”
“Which begs the question I never asked. What’s the hurry?”
Dylan growled again. “There have been outsiders snooping around. The on-site security guards can take care of the usual crap, like kids looking for thrills, but this time, there was a reporter asking about the construction. The boss asked me to get up there and play public relations.”
Daniel grinned darkly. “That’s not exactly your forte.”
“Not unless I’m convincing you to tie me up and fuck the shit out of me, no.”
Caught off guard, Daniel laughed and coughed at the same time. “Convincing me?”
“Begging is more accurate.”
There was a pause, then Dylan said, “It is, yeah, but I don’t seem to need to do much of it.”
Daniel smiled wistfully. “I wish we had the weekend.”
There was a long sigh in Daniel’s ear, then Dylan said, “Tell me about it. Especially since I’m not coming down to see you for our usual reasons for getting together.”
Daniel closed his eyes, kicking Murphy and his goddamn law. “Something wrong or something on your mind?”
“Both, but I wouldn’t say there was anything *wrong*, exactly. I was feeling rather, uh, stressed yesterday–and no, I can’t explain why–so I needed Dominic to take my mind off things.”
Daniel quickly squashed the jealousy. “So you’re rather sore today, is that what you’re saying?”
“No, just … exhausted.”
Daniel made a face. So much for sex, which left their time together to whatever Dylan had on his mind. “Are you coming down for a face-to-face goodbye?”
“Not a permanent one, Daniel. I just wanted to see you before I left. And I figured we could just hang out, talk about whatever, and just, you know, be us.”
Daniel started to smile, liking the idea. “I’d actually like that. When will you get here?”
“Ten minutes, I think.”
“Meaning you called me when you were almost here?” Daniel asked, surprised. “What if I’d been working on base?”
“I took a chance. If you’d been working, I’d have simply turned around. It’s not like I’d made other plans for the evening.”
Daniel grinned. “Good point.”
Daniel felt awkward as he invited Dylan inside his apartment. He’d been looking forward to seeing him before he went away and most of that had to do with physically being with him, showing him how he felt by making love. Now that was out of the question and for the first time, Daniel didn’t have a clue how to behave. Standing there, looking at him, sex was all he could think about. Touching him, kissing him. If he moved forward and hugged him, he’d get aroused, it was as simple as that.
It was annoying that he wasn’t prepared to do what Dylan came down to do: to sit down and talk. It was a personal contradiction. Daniel was the one who talked things out, sometimes too much. So why was it that the idea suddenly bothered him? With a sigh, he ordered himself to get over it, that this was probably how Jack felt half the time. Well, without the sexual frustration part.
“What’s wrong?” Dylan asked, expecting a warm greeting and not getting one.
Daniel told himself that if the man was there to talk, then perhaps the frustration should be pointed out. “Given what you said on the phone, I don’t quite know how to say hello,” he said, wiping his palms on his jeans.
Dylan gave him an equally confused look, but this one was more amused than anything. He closed the distance and took Daniel’s hand. “How about a kiss and a hug and we go from there?”
Daniel suddenly felt like teasing as he leaned away when Dylan tried to kiss him. “You’ll only get me going and given that you’re not up for anything, I’m not really in the mood for a case of blue balls.”
Dylan laughed through his nose and shook his head. “Just because I’m not in the mood for receiving anything physical doesn’t mean I’m not in the mood for giving.”
Daniel smiled, though inwardly he felt foolish for not having considered that option. With him, it was always reciprocal, no matter what. “What are you saying? You’ll get off, in a manner of speaking, on getting me off?”
“Exactly,” Dylan laughed. “Haven’t you ever felt like simply giving a blow job and feeling content with that?”
The man had a point, and once upon a time, Daniel had known that. Why had he forgotten? “I have, yeah, but it’s been a while since I’ve actually done that.”
That seemed to surprise Dylan and his eyes were round and wide. “Not with Jack or Jason?”
Daniel made a face. “No. The last time had been over five years ago … with my late wife.”
“Oh,” Dylan replied. He squeezed Daniel’s hand. “Well I think it’s time you considered getting back to that, don’t you?”
Daniel stared into Dylan’s handsome, expressive face and stared at his full lips as he pulled him in to kiss them. He hadn’t quite planned on turning the kiss into something longer and more passionate, but he went with Dylan’s lead. Funny thing was Daniel felt just as awkward when he pulled away and headed for the kitchen.
“Want a beer?” he asked.
“Thanks,” Dylan replied as he sat down on the couch.
Walking into the living room and handing him the cold bottle, he suddenly smiled and said, “I bought you something.”
Dylan’s eyes widened and he paused with the bottle halfway to his mouth. “A present?” he asked.
“A remember me present.”
Dylan shook his head. “I don’t need anything to remember you by.”
Daniel shrugged as he remained standing, needing now to give him the present and get it over with. Before they could talk about anything else, he wanted desperately to see if he’d been on the right track. “I’ll get it?” he half-asked, for his tone wasn’t really one that brooked argument.
“Please,” Dylan replied.
Daniel went to the bedroom and snatched the small black box off the dresser, glanced at the larger one on the floor, then left the bedroom with a regretful sigh. Back in the living room, Dylan started to get up but he waved him back down, then sat down on the coffee table directly across from him. With a hopeful sigh, he held the box out.
Dylan leaned forward and set his beer on the coffee table next to Daniel, then took the box. “You’re making me nervous,” he said.
Daniel knew how Dylan felt about marriage and grinned reassuringly. “Don’t worry. At least it’s not velvet.”
Dylan snorted. “If there was a ring in here, I think I’d have to check to see if you were an alien.”
Daniel coughed out a laugh and quickly dismissed the guilt he felt over how unintentionally ironic Dylan’s statement truly was. Purposely thinking of another reason to laugh, he placed his hand over Dylan’s before he opened the box. “It is a ring, just not the one you don’t want to see.”
Eyeing Daniel, then the box, he gently pushed Daniel’s hand away and lifted the lid. His brows rose sky-high as he beheld the thick silver ring adorned with a silver ball on one side. “You bought me a head ring.”
When he looked up and stared with astonishment into Daniel’s eyes, Daniel knew his lover was pleased. “I’ve never used one, but I figured you have. I also figured that while you’re away, it could be our symbol of …” He didn’t want to say it. He wanted Dylan to be the one to finish that sentence and thus make the claim.
“Ownership,” Dylan breathed as he slid the large ring over two fingertips. He thumbed the “ball joint” and swallowed.
“It’s okay?” Daniel asked, almost certain it was, but he had to hear him say it.
Dylan looked up and nodded. “More than okay.”
He suddenly stood up and began to undo his jeans and guessing what he was doing, Daniel helped. When his cock was free, he handed Daniel the ring, then both of them laughed as Daniel slid it snugly over the glans until it ‘docked’ under the rim. With his hand around the shaft, Daniel was very tempted to stroke him and get him hard. He looked up with a very wicked grin and licked his lips.
Dylan groaned and with a heavy sigh, pulled Daniel’s hands away and began to button up his jeans as he sat back down. “Remind me to take Murphy out behind the woodshed.”
Daniel nodded and stood up, glad that Dylan liked his present, and looked down at him. Reaching out, he leaned over to cup his lover’s face as he kissed him. “I figured that even though we’re not monogamous, a nice little reminder about who you submit to–“
“Belong to,” Dylan corrected. He swallowed again, then his hands went to Daniel’s jeans, quickly unbuttoning. “Let me thank you.”
“You already have,” Daniel answered, but he didn’t take the hands away.
“Please,” Dylan said in the familiar begging tone Daniel had come to know so well.
Daniel stared down at him, not saying a word as he allowed Dylan to pull his jeans and briefs down over his hips. When hands went around his shaft, he grabbed Dylan by the hair and gently tugged his head back, away from his slowly stiffening cock. “What do you want?” he asked, threading his fingers through his lover’s hair. He knew Dylan would not move his head until told to do so.
“To suck you,” Dylan replied.
Pushing Dylan’s hands off, Daniel took his cock in hand and slapped it gently over Dylan’s face, the glans hitting his lips and chin. Dylan opened his mouth automatically and with a satisfied smile, Daniel rubbed his cockhead over his lips. “How much?”
“I’ll do anything, please,” Dylan begged, closing his eyes. He breathed heavily over his cock, making Daniel’s skin tingle with excitement. His tongue readied just inside his mouth, not tempting to strike until told to do so. Daniel could literally see him start to salivate.
“Then suck me dry,” he said, then held on to Dylan’s shoulders as his lover expertly went to work, making him jerk with acute pleasure each time he darted his tongue over the slit and under the glans, and each time he sucked him down his throat. After only a few minutes, Daniel was hard and aching, his dick dying for release. One last thing needed to be done and that was to hear the strangled whimper Dylan made when his mouth was fucked with pretended force.
“Take it all,” Daniel growled in a whisper, then gripped with the slightest amount of pressure to the back of his lover’s head. Dylan swallowed him whole, breath choking through his nose, then he suddenly pulled back and with hard sucks and short, quick bobs, gave Daniel just the right amount of friction.
“Yes,” Daniel moaned, and with a rough grasp of his lover’s hair, he tossed his head back as he came, hips jerking as he poured each spurt down Dylan’s throat. The seconds passed slowly as his orgasm faded, then Dylan was pulling up his pants and tucking him back inside. Daniel looked down, staring at his lover’s red lips as his slightly shaky fingers buttoned him closed. Leaning down, Daniel cupped his face again and kissed him. “Are you sure you don’t want me to suck you off?”
Dylan pressed his face again Daniel’s groin, groaning. “It would take so long, your mouth and jaws would get sore.”
Daniel stroked his hair. “Even with the ring?”
With a sigh, Dylan nodded, then grabbed his beer and sat back. “Unfortunately.”
Daniel was curious what exactly had happened last night but he didn’t ask. They’d already come to an understanding about Dylan’s time with Dominic. He didn’t have to discuss what he did unless he wanted to and the one thing Daniel would never do was pry. If Dylan should ever want that to change, he was to let him know.
“You hungry?” Daniel asked, changing the subject. When Dylan smiled provocatively, he smirked back and clarified. “For food?”
Laughing, Dylan answered, “Definitely,” and followed him into the kitchen.
After having a look in his fridge, Daniel decided to make an omelet for dinner, with bacon, cheese, and onions. It was fast, tasty, and he could talk while preparing it. “Grate the cheese, would you?”
Dylan gave him a curious grin as picked up the small block of cheddar and the box grater. He definitely looked like a man with something on his mind.
“What’d you want to talk about?” Daniel asked as he began to chop up the onion.
Chewing at his lip, Dylan said, “I was wondering how you’re doing with Jack and Jason.”
Daniel was a little confused. “What do you mean?”
“I was just … it’s gonna sound stupid.”
“From you? I don’t think so. Spit it out.”
“Well, I was just wondering how the three of you are doing.”
That still didn’t tell Daniel anything and he frowned. “In what way?”
“I was just curious how you’re doing with them because you know how they feel about each other, right?”
The light dawned, or so Daniel thought. “I do,” Daniel nodded. “And we actually discussed it before we had our little session with Dominic.”
“You did?” Dylan asked in surprise.
“Well, it was more like an argument, and you would have found out what it was about had you not left the table at lunch that day.”
Dylan cringed. “Sorry about that.”
Daniel shook his head. “Don’t be sorry. It turned out to be a perfect opportunity for you.”
Dylan could only smile as he remembered and without looking up from his task, he said, “You were amazing.”
Daniel grinned as he wiped off his hands, then reached over and slapped Dylan on the ass. “Stay on topic.”
“Right,” Dylan chuckled.
“So what exactly are you wanting to know? How our relationship is going?”
Dylan cleared his throat, looking embarrassed. “Now that you say it like that, I withdraw the question. It sounds, I don’t know, incredibly nosy.”
Again Daniel frowned and he gave Dylan’s arm a swift, backhanded slap before he turned to the stove. “You’re worried about me. That’s what you mean, isn’t it?”
Dylan shot him a wan smile. “I am a bit, yeah.”
“I appreciate it, but it’s not necessary. We’re … in that place where we’ll always be lovers, always be best friends. They have each other, they have me, and I have … you.” Daniel suddenly blushed when he said it, realizing that it sounded a lot more like commitment than he’d intended. “Well, not ‘have you’ as in to have and to hold, but–“
“I get it,” Dylan interrupted, then took a few steps over and kissed him. “And I’m fine with it.”
“Oh,” Daniel said, feeling intensely relieved, but the blush wasn’t going away. Funnily enough, one was rising on Dylan’s cheeks, too. It oddly made him feel better. “Is that all you wanted to talk to me about?”
Dylan shrugged. “Partly. But I guess what I want to know isn’t anything specific. I’m just wanting to get to know you better.”
Daniel couldn’t help but chuckle but didn’t say the obvious. “Like?” he prodded.
“How you guys met, that sort of thing.”
Daniel jogged his brows knowingly. “I can tell you some of it, just the not the where, when, and why.”
“I get that. Besides, I don’t need to know all your secrets. Spoils the fun.”
Daniel shot him a telling look. “And some secrets will have to be kept no matter what.”
Dylan nodded back. “Indeed.” When Daniel abruptly laughed, he asked, “What?”
“Nothing. It’s just that you reminded me of one of my teammates. He says that a lot.”
“Indeed?” Dylan joked.
“Indeed,” Daniel said, smiling broadly. “So, about Jack and Jason.” He started to think about what he could tell Dylan and what he couldn’t and began to formulate the phrasing in his head. With a sigh, he finally said, “I met Jack first and we didn’t hit it off right away.” When Dylan gave him that look of surprise, Daniel nodded slowly. “Jack … tolerated me. Eventually he started to understand that being a geeky scientist didn’t equal pacifist. When necessary, I will fight my way out of a nasty situation.”
Dylan frowned, looking confused. When Daniel lifted a brow, he said, “I’ve met archaeologists in the field. They’ve never been the chicken-shit type. In fact, I’d say it’s been the opposite.” When Daniel gave him a look of surprise, he said, “Ten years ago, my team was sent to Guatemala to assist a cooperative of American and British archaeologists that were being harassed by looters.”
“Ah,” Daniel said with understanding. “Let me guess. The scientists were a bunch of stubborn men and women, protective of the locals as well as the Mayan ruins?”
“Very,” Dylan grinned. “You’ve been there, I take it?”
“Chiapas, among others.”
“And I take it you walked around with sidearms or rifles like all the scientists down there do?”
Daniel answered with a jog of his brows. “Mostly in Central America, but Mexico had its moments.”
Dylan suddenly frowned, further confused. “Just who the hell did Jack ever run into that led him to believe that archaeologists were wusses?”
Daniel groaned as he stirred the onions in the pan. “Believe me, Dylan. The wusses are out there. I’ve worked with several of them.” When Dylan shook his head disbelievingly, he added, “You were lucky, that’s all. Jack wasn’t. Your experience gave you a positive reaction. Jack’s … well, it’s not just archaeologists but scientists in general and he’s yet to tell me what gave him such a negative view.”
“I find that odd, coming from him.”
“That he’d lump a group of people together like that.”
“He’s like that with the Russian military, too.”
“Oh no,” Dylan said, dismayed. “Is the man blind or just stubborn?”
Daniel suddenly laughed. “I think you know it’s the latter. Once Jack gets influenced by something, it takes an act of nature to get him to see otherwise.” As Dylan continued to shake his head, Daniel chuckled. “But he does come around, eventually. I’ve changed a bit from the man I was five years ago. Five years ago, despite carrying arms on certain digs, I was more teacher than soldier.” He grinned tellingly. “You should have seen me when I accepted the job with the Air Force.”
“Had to get in shape fast, did you?” Dylan grinned.
Daniel jogged his brows. “Six years ago, when I first met Jack, I hadn’t been to a dig in months.” He raised his arm and flexed the bicep. “Wasn’t as muscular as I had been, as I am now. Going by my physical appearance, Jack assumed that archaeologists never worked their asses off, that I never worked my ass off. He really didn’t have a clue that we sometimes slog through jungles, climb mountains and dunes.” He made a face. “So for a while, he used to tease me. But over time, that went away.” He paused and looked through the kitchen and at the stuff on his shelves, at the knickknacks and private artifacts he’d collected. “Sometimes, I still have to remind him.”
“Sounds like they were pretty harsh.”
“Not really. Jack just never made it easy. But over the years, both Jack and Jason have seen me at my worst, at my best, and at my most embarrassing.”
“Care to elaborate on any of that?” Dylan asked, looking very curiosity-killed-the-cat.
Daniel threw him a sardonic grin. “I’d have to think about what facts to change.”
Dylan’s expression was understanding. “Sometimes classified is a bitch.”
Daniel nodded as he stirred the onions in the pan. “I don’t know what Jack would say, but for me, I think we’ve both learned a few things from the other. And Jason …” Daniel pursed his lips in thought, thinking back. “There was a time when all Jack and I did was fight. Jason was there for me, always listening, never teasing me where it hurt. He was the one who got Jack to stop behaving like an asshole.”
“He really was?” Dylan asked. “I mean, behaving like an asshole? Because it usually takes two people to fight.”
Daniel nodded absently. “Some of it was definitely my fault, but it was always defensive, never offensive. One day Jack just …” With a sigh, he took the pan from Dylan and added the cooked bacon to the onions. “He still hasn’t explained to me exactly what bug had crawled up his ass.”
Dylan crinkled his eyes in thought, his gaze on Daniel. “I think I have the answer.”
Daniel’s brows shot up in surprise. “You do? How?”
Dylan leaned against the counter and crossed his arms. “Almost two years ago, he came to the club alone.” Hesitating, he added, “We hooked up once during that weekend.”
“I already knew you had,” Daniel nodded with casual acceptance.
“Anyway, we were out on the balcony in his suite, drinking, snacking, and we got to talking about relationships. Once his tongue was loosened with bourbon, he started to tell me about you, although he didn’t mention you by name. But given what you just said, I know now that he was talking about you. He told me how he’d screwed up this important friendship he had with someone he worked with, and he told me that the reason he had done something so stupid was because he didn’t like being attracted to a teammate.”
Daniel laughed, mostly in disgust. “That’s funny.”
“Yeah, he wasn’t happy about it, either. He said that he cared more than he should about his entire team, but there was one person he started to actually want.”
Daniel blinked rapidly, twice. “He said want?”
“Want. And he said that he purposely backed off the friendship because he was starting to worry more about your life instead of his entire team’s. He figured that the easiest way to stop that was to make you hate him, so you’d react badly, piss him off, and he’d stop wanting you.”
Daniel rolled his eyes. “Did you tell him what a wickedly brainless thing that was?”
Dylan grinned. “I didn’t have to. He knew what he’d done was stupid and he didn’t quite know what to do to get you back.”
“Easy,” Daniel said sarcastically. “Stop acting like he couldn’t care less if I lived or died.”
“I know he did, because it was maybe four or five months later when he told me he’d pulled his head out of his ass.”
Daniel frowned. He had an idea when that might have been. “Did he mention specifics?”
Dylan shrugged. “He said it was after you’d gone to a class reunion at your Alma Mater.”
Daniel smiled, mostly to himself as he remembered their friendship falling back into sync after he’d returned from Egypt. “He wanted to go with me but when I told him I wasn’t going to tolerate his incessant sniping around people I respected, he went up to his cabin in Minnesota and brooded instead.”
“Must’ve been some brooding,” Dylan said.
“Whatever it was, after I came back to Colorado Springs, he’d changed back to his old charming, annoying self.”
Dylan regarded him carefully. “He had Jason with him that weekend?”
Daniel nodded. “One of our teammates had gone with him, too, but he left the next day, leaving Jack and Jason alone. Ostensibly to fish.”
“Did Jack ever tell you what happened?”
Daniel let out an aggravated sigh. “Nope. He’d just said that he was sorry and it wouldn’t happen again.”
Pouring the eggs over the finished bacon and onions, he moved aside to let Dylan sprinkle the cheese on top. After a long silent minute, Daniel turned the heat off and set the pan under the oven broiler.
“Broiling?” Dylan asked. “That’ll make it more like a frittata.”
“Until you fold it over,” Daniel grinned.
“Fridge. Both red and green.”
“Nice,” Dylan replied. “Hot sauce?”
“Cupboard next to the fridge.”
“You don’t keep it in the fridge?”
Daniel shook his head slowly. “Like ketchup and tomatoes, it has to be at room temperature and refrigeration leeches out the flavor.”
“I didn’t know that,” Dylan said as he retrieved the Tabasco bottle.
Getting everything served on plates, they sat down to eat. Daniel looked over at his lover as he cut a portion of his omelet with his fork and was filled with the desire to tell Dylan he didn’t want him to leave. It wouldn’t have done any good, of course, but there was the need to let him know how he felt just in those simple words.
“Thanks,” he said.
“For what?” Dylan asked, his mouth full.
“For being here.”
Dylan swallowed and grinned back. “Where else would I be?”
Daniel took a slow breath, then said, “I wish you didn’t have to leave.”
Dylan stared at him as he took another bite. “Me, too.”
He said nothing else and Daniel was hit with the feeling that Dylan didn’t want anything more to be said. His feelings, however, were off.
“If you didn’t have to work, you could always drive me to the airport.”
Daniel swallowed, hating that it wasn’t possible for him to do that. But he thought of a compromise and his solution would be a first for them. “You could always stay the night.” Dylan suddenly blushed, right up to his ears, and Daniel immediately regretted the suggestion. “Never mind, you probably have all your bags–“
“They’re in the car,” Dylan said simply. As Daniel gawked at him, he took a long drink of his ice water, then nervously laughed. “I … was kinda hoping …”
Daniel was filled with the sudden heat of arousal as blood rushed south. He pictured the look on Dylan’s face as saw his new toys, and as he tied him to the headboard with the set of cuffs. They were both quiet, eyeing each other, and all Daniel did was nod once as they ate, giving silent approval to Dylan’s unfinished statement. Finally, he asked, “Could you tell me exactly why you’re not up for sex?”
Dylan was quiet for several long moments, then finally pushed his mostly-eaten meal aside. “What you did for me was mild compared to what Dominic does.”
“So you’ve told me before.”
“After we’re finished, I’m left feeling this … peace, in both mind and body. I don’t get aroused, I don’t get stressed, and I can sleep like the dead.”
“And?” Daniel asked impatiently.
“It’s like riding a high of endorphins and it usually lasts a few days.”
There was a slight emphasis on ‘usually’ and Daniel lifted a brow as he felt an ache of hope deep inside his belly. “Usually?”
Dylan cleared his throat. “I was feeling that when I came over.”
Dylan took a deep breath, his eyes fixed on Daniel’s. “Now, not as much.”
Dylan’s ‘not as much’ statement proved to be very accurate. He took a long time to become aroused, but Daniel hadn’t minded because he’d wanted a long night. His lover’s reaction to his box of toys was exactly as hoped and it had actually helped the situation.
“Let’s go on,” Dylan had said, looking from his flaccid cock to Daniel’s very healthy hard one. “I promise I’ll catch up.”
Restrained to the headboard, Daniel had stared down at his lover’s naked body, his still flaccid dick, and had asked, “Are you like this with Dominic sometimes?” Thankfully, Dylan had nodded, but it hadn’t taken Daniel long to change the state of things.
Concentrating all his attention away from Dylan’s cockhead and the ring that sat firmly underneath, Daniel had proceeded to make him writhe and squirm and jerk, using the pinwheels, the crop, and the short leather paddle. It hadn’t take long before Dylan was panting and whimpering, his cockhead purple from strain, leaking pre-come.
Then Daniel settled between his legs and using only his mouth, he’d sucked at the glans and made Dylan scream. Fortunately, he’d covered his mouth with the ball gag, but he didn’t keep up that particular torture for long. Removing the gag so he could kiss him, Daniel had continued the torture by jerking him off, bringing him to the edge several times and then backing off.
By the time he’d let him come, his cock was deeply buried in his ass and Dylan’s ankles were high over his head. When he himself came, it was hot and slow, and with it an overwhelming need to keep doing this forever. He really, really liked this version of being dominant and judging by the way Dylan was wrapped around him and dead asleep, he did too.
When morning came and the alarm sounded, Daniel strolled naked into the kitchen to make coffee but he had no intention of leaving for work at his usual time. He grabbed his cell phone and dialed Jack’s number.
“Hey,” he said when Jack answered.
“Hey. Sorry we didn’t stop by last night. I fell asleep.”
“Where was Jason?” Daniel grinned.
Daniel smiled, picturing it. “Listen, I’m gonna be in a bit late.”
“We have a mission prep at 1000, Daniel.”
“I know, and I’ll be there by 0900, I promise.”
“That’s timing it fine. What’s up?”
Daniel cleared his throat. “Dylan stayed the night. He’s leaving for the airport in a few hours.”
“Crap. That wasn’t supposed to be till next week.”
“I know. Plans changed.”
“So … he spent the night, eh?”
Daniel could hear the soft teasing lilt in Jack’s voice. “And he got to experience a few of my new toys.”
“What new …” Jack suddenly made a growling sound and Daniel heard Jason in the background asking what was wrong. To Jason, Jack said, “He got his delivery yesterday.” To Daniel, he asked, “I thought that wasn’t due till today?”
“No, I had Next Day Air.”
Another growl. “Right.” He sighed, then said, “Then we’ll see you in a few hours.”
Daniel could just see the smile on his face as he hung up, then jumped a little when arms wrapped around him from behind. Dylan was definitely in the mood as his hard cock rubbed against Daniel’s ass, and Daniel’s morning arousal matched him. It also gave him an idea, something he desperately wanted to do, and it would give Dylan a nice morning memory. Without any words of warning, he turned around in his arms and pushed Dylan away from him. “Bend over and grab your ankles.”
He slapped his ass cheeks with his hand, telling him, “Nothing between us this time. Just skin on skin.”
And a condom, Daniel thought to himself as he retrieved one from the bathroom. With a bit of lube, and the desire for the fuck to be a bit rough, he didn’t waste time. He indulged himself, for once, in his usual morning arousal, and with a with a lusty baring of teeth, he grabbed his lover’s hips and slowly entered him. It didn’t take long before Dylan was moaning and panting with each thrust and all that did was cause Daniel’s arousal to climb higher.
His orgasm was closing in and he could tell that Dylan was close, too. “You’re mine, remember that,” he said as he thrust with short, rapid jabs. Dylan’s responsive moans echoed the room and too soon, he was coming, his semen decorating the floor. “Fuck yes!” Daniel gasped, and completing his indulgence, he threw his head back and concentrated only on the feel of that hot friction around his cock and the way his balls slapped against slick, sweaty skin.
At the last of Dylan’s high-pitched moans, the kind he let loose every time he came, Daniel slammed into him and bucked as he climaxed, each punctuated thrust causing Dylan to pant, “Yes!”
He waited only a few moments before he withdrew, then led Dylan into the shower for a very long, languishing wash–the best way on mornings like these to come down from afterglow.
There was a sense of loss in walking Dylan to his car, and it intensified as Daniel watched him drive away. His pragmatic, logical side told him that this loss wasn’t permanent but he felt it keenly just the same. He suddenly wondered if separation anxiety would show up, and he pressed his lips together, still feeling the warm bruising of the long kiss they’d shared at the door. He wished they’d been able to kiss goodbye out in the open and on the heels of that thought came one more reason to curse his job. He understood that his sacrifices were for a greater good, but one day, those sacrifices would have to stop being more important than the people he loved or there was no point in them at all.
Absently fiddling with a pen in his left hand, Daniel stared at his computer screen while he scrolled through the pictures from P2C-881. It had been intriguing to find an expansive set of ruins, but much more fascinating was the intact, unmarred monolith standing by itself at the edge of the site. Daniel transferred his pen to his right hand and copied down more of the raised symbols found on the sides of the structure. It looked familiar but he couldn’t place it. He would figure it out, however; it was only a matter of time.
The bulkhead door to his office opened and Jason walked in, closing it behind him. “Hey,” Daniel greeted.
“Hey,” Jason said, plopping down in the chair next to Daniel’s desk. Looking over his shoulder, he eyed the bathroom. “That door locks, doesn’t it?”
“Yeah, why?” Daniel asked, pausing in his work to pay more attention to his friend.
“Because,” Jason said, clearing his throat. “I’m hiding.”
Daniel realized that Jason looked very uncomfortable but it was more of a “naughty boy has been bad” uncomfortable than anything else. “What’d you do?” he grinned.
Jason winced and got up, beginning to nervously pace. “We … that is, me, Jack, and Teal’c, were in the gym.” He turned to face Daniel and said, “And I dumped Jack on his ass.”
Daniel stared in surprise. “You didn’t.”
“It was his idea,” Jason said defensively. “Jack wanted me to show him how Teal’c and I had been sparring last week. Remember that thing?” Daniel nodded. “Lorne, Reynolds, Siler, and a bunch of other guys were there, and Lorne’s got a gossip mouth so he’s probably the one who told Jack.” Jason rolled his eyes. “Fucking stupid ass. I was put on the spot, and Teal’c–you know how he gets those odd spurts of devious humor?”
Daniel chuckled. “Yeah?”
“Well, he got one earlier and suggested that Jack spar with me the same way he spars with me.”
Daniel groaned. “Oh no.”
Jason shot him a dirty look as Daniel started to chuckle. “It’s so not funny. You didn’t see the look of payback on Jack’s face when he looked up at me.”
“Teal’c pushed you right into that. You know Jack doesn’t being embarrassed in front of subordinates. Why didn’t you tell Jack to spar with Teal’c instead?”
“Because Jack wanted to spar with me,” Jason said, clearing his throat. Lowering his voice, he said, “And I know I’m not supposed to let our relationship affect me at work, but goddamn it, Daniel. When he asks, I can’t refuse.”
Daniel sighed. “Next time you spar with Teal’c, I suggest you put him on his ass.”
Jason sniggered darkly. “That’ll go over well. Only thing worse than Jack is Teal’c.”
“Honor demands it and he knows that. Play that card, Jason. Trust me.”
Jason sat down again, sighing heavily. “SG-2 is going to be sent to a toilet world, you just watch.”
Daniel’s sympathetic smile turned wicked. “You’re forgetting that you’re in a unique position to make sure that doesn’t happen.”
Jason rolled his eyes. “You know damn well he goes out of his way not to play favorites.”
“Oh right,” Daniel said sarcastically. “But instead he spitefully punishes people for a bruised pride?”
Jason pursed his lips. “Okay, excellent point.”
“So you’re hiding for no reason,” Daniel teased.
Jason reached over and took Daniel’s hand. “Not really. Gave me a really good reason to come see you.”
“You need a really good reason?” Daniel teased.
Jason shook his head and leaned his elbow on the desk and rested his cheek in his hand. “Heard from Dylan?”
A slight flush rose to Daniel’s cheeks as he remembered how Jason’s mouth on his dick added a very good intensity to the phone sex with Dylan. “Not since last night.” The man had been gone for two weeks and almost every phone call had ended with particularly scorching sex.
“Think he’ll call again tonight?” Jason asked, the corners of his mouth twitching.
Daniel blinked at him, trying not to mimic that damn smile. “You’re having way too much fun at our expense, you know that right?”
Again, Jason cleared his throat, but he reached over with his free hand and slid his index finger over the back of Daniel’s. “You never complain.”
“No,” Daniel agreed, and he didn’t see the need to further elaborate, especially since the conversation was making him feel inappropriately warm. He looked at his watch: two more hours till it was time to leave for the day. He had a feeling it was going to pass very slowly.
“In fact,” Jason said, lowering his voice a little more. “Last night, you looked hot, kneeling on the bed, phone in your ear, my mouth on your d–“
“Okay, okay, enough now,” Daniel interrupted as he stood up. He started to walk around the desk, by Jason, but given the look on his friend and lover’s face, he turned and went the other way.
“Jack will be free tonight,” came Jason’s voice behind him, the tone leading and suggestive.
Daniel stopped at the lab table and closed his eyes as images flooded his brain. Two days before, when they were offworld studying the monolith, Jack had made a very compelling threat about a threesome sandwich, but that threat had yet to be fulfilled because Jack had been busy over the last two days and evenings, discussing the new training missions with Hammond that would be starting next week.
Hands touched Daniel’s upper arms and he jumped, then swallowed. “Don’t do that, Jason,” he said, stepping out of his touch and turning around.
“No cameras, remember?”
“No, but given how you’ve just got me all …” He sighed heavily, staring at Jason and hoping his expression was scolding. It wasn’t, because Jason just tilted his head and glanced at the bathroom.
“Need a frustration adjustment?” Jason asked.
Daniel almost reacted defensively, but Jason’s teasing began to bring out his confrontational side. He took a step forward, making sure Jason correctly read the look in his eyes. “Only if you’re willing to be bent over the toilet and fucked really, really hard.”
Jason coughed and started to answer, but they were both saved from actually refusing their taunts when the door opened and Jack walked in.
Clapping his hands together, his eyes darting back and forth between them, he said, “Well, guys, what to d’you say we leave early and grab a steak dinner at T.J.’s Grill?”
Jason and Daniel looked meaningfully at each other.
“What?” Jack asked.
“Nothing,” Daniel said, shooting Jason a warning look not to say a word. “I could go for a steak.”
“Me too,” Jason chimed in.
“Great,” Jack said, happily rubbing his stomach. “Sounds like a plan.”
Daniel stuffed his hands in his pockets and gave Jack a poignant sigh. “So.”
“So?” Jack asked.
“Afterward, how about that idea for dessert you told me about two days ago?” Jack’s response was to level him with a stare that he couldn’t read. “What?”
“We’ll see,” Jack replied.
Jack was being too accommodating and it was making Daniel suspicious. “Where’re Sam and Teal’c?” he asked carefully.
Jack lifted his chin and grinned. “Meeting us there.”
. . .
With a full stomach and mild alcohol buzz, Daniel sat back on a bar stool and watched as Sam and Teal’c played a game of team pool with Jack and Jason. And they were wiping the floor with them. At first, it was amusing to watch. But after four games and two hours, Daniel was feeling rather antsy. It was a good thing Jack had arranged for them to leave early, and Daniel couldn’t help but wonder if this was why. Had he anticipated this? Or had Sam and Teal’c asked him about going out for dinner and pool? Nothing had been said during dinner.
For a moment, a brief moment, Daniel resented the presence of his teammates. He loved them dearly, but over the last six months, he hadn’t wanted to be around them. He’d needed his space, his own time to relax and do whatever he wanted. His subconscious had worked out why that was and now that Daniel was having some semblance of a normal life that did not include going to a restaurant lounge, he was finding it very tedious.
Not that there was anything wrong with playing pool, but it was a specific SGC activity. Having Sam and Teal’c around was also SGC-related and Daniel wanted to veer away from anything SGC for a while. While Jack and Jason were part of the SGC, too, they were also his lovers. That superseded any prior status.
And right now, as his lovers, Daniel wasn’t watching the game from an entertainment point of view, he was watching it from the point of view of foreplay–two hours of foreplay.
Holding those sticks. Stroking those sticks. Bastards were doing it on purpose every time they looked at him. It was innocent enough from any outsider watching, but Daniel knew better. It also didn’t help when they leaned over the table for a shot. It wouldn’t have mattered if they had their asses to him or not because all Daniel pictured was fucking them over it. That was also their intention.
Also on his mind was comparing his life now to what it had been six months ago. Back then, he wouldn’t have been having thoughts about sexualizing a game of pool. He’d have been content enough to simply focus on the game and not be distracted by the shape of Jack’s ass or the way Jason’s t-shirt fit tightly over his chest. Six months ago, he’d been content, but not in the usual sense of the word. Perhaps the boring, mundane sense of the word.
It was annoying. Why was it that something so simple became so complex and meaningful in his life? Not even when he’d been married–or even dating, to use the term loosely–had sex had this much meaning in his life. Was it because of the ‘Gate? Was it because of that high risk factor he’d talked to Dylan about? Was it just an effort to feel some ordinary human excitement, away from the stresses of the Program?
Perhaps, but for Daniel, there was another ingredient: It was as if it was meant to be. He didn’t feel that way about most things in life; nothing was ever fated. But he’d felt that way about Shau’re and her people as he’d lived his life on Abydos. But that feeling had dissolved after her abduction and then her death. But he was feeling again, and this time, for Jack and Jason. And Dylan, too.
Daniel didn’t think he’d ever have broadened his sexual horizons if it hadn’t been for him. Perhaps there’d been other kinks and fetishes he’d have explored with Jack and Jason, and there still were many possibilities with them, but with Dylan, something had happened there that went beyond the simple act of getting off.
Truth was, Daniel was a lot more confident a person than he had been. Part of it lay at Jack’s feet, part of it lay at Jason’s, but the majority of his confidence was the direct result of being taught how to accept and channel the dominant side of his personality. And what that had done was create more focus in his work, in the way he dealt with people both on world and off. It wasn’t the ability to feel comfortable tying someone up. It was seeing the way someone else responded to him when he showed his dominance. It wasn’t arrogance or self-importance. Just dominance. The Alpha Male, as Jack called it.
Even thinking it made Daniel feel odd, but that was the truth of it. He was a better man for having met Dylan, for having a relationship with him, with Jack and Jason. He also knew that if something should ever happen and he lost them, it would seriously cripple his self-esteem for a while, but he wouldn’t lose it completely. He was who he was. For good.
As he ruminated, Daniel didn’t just watch his friends, but casually glanced about the room. Not too much, as if he were looking for something, but just enough so his gaze didn’t fix on one spot. He’d look just past the pool table to the lounge tables beyond, to the raised section further away, where the restaurant blended with the lounge. It was a habit he’d picked up a long time ago to keep people from staring at him. He didn’t normally like it when people did that; he’d been made fun of enough in his life and so a self-defense tactic had been adopted. But his awareness of his surroundings didn’t go unnoticed during these introspections, partly because he’d been trained to notice that which others didn’t–apart from people like Jack, who tended to do the same but for different reasons.
It was that awareness that had Daniel’s attention, at first subconsciously, returning again to a table in the raised section and to the handsome, dark-haired man who sat there staring in his direction. Daniel fixed on him and realized the man wasn’t just looking in his direction, watching the pool game. He was watching him. He met the man’s eyes, or thought he did, and purposely slid his gaze to the right before he returned it to his watcher. Sure enough, the man was indeed watching him.
He offered the dark-haired man a smile and the man smiled back, raising a glass of dark ale in salute. An invitation or just a simple hello? After Daniel gave a slight nod in acknowledgement, the man smiled again and didn’t look away. In Daniel’s experience, that was a clear invitation to come say hello in person.
Knowing the game would likely continue on for possibly another hour, Daniel picked up his glass of Hard Lemonade from the tall table beside him and got to his feet. As he passed Jack, he said, “I’ll be back.”
He was therefore taken by surprise when Jack touched his arm and both he and Jason asked, “Where’re you going?” in an off-putting tone. It made Daniel instantly aware that they actually expected him to stay put. Raising his brows, he said, “To mingle, meet new people.” He walked past, feeling their eyes on his back, as knew Sam’s and Teal’c’s were too, and at that moment, with a mild feeling of indignant rebellion, he didn’t really give a damn.
Crossing the room and taking the five steps to the upper level, he weaved his way through the tables heading for the dark-haired man whose gaze was, thankfully, still fixed on him. Reaching his table, the man got to his feet. He was about his height and well-muscled with a slender frame. He had dark eyes that seemed to stare right through to a person’s soul–that was the impression it gave Daniel and it reminded him exactly of Jack. He switched his glass to his left hand and offered the other.
“Daniel,” he said with a slightly nervous smile. It was then that he noticed that the man’s hair, previously assumed to be short, was actually long and clasped in a ponytail. It was no ordinary hold, either, but held with a black leather tie.
The man shook his hand–a nicely firm, warm grip that Daniel instantly liked–and said in a deep voice, “Duncan.”
Daniel indicated with his glass the empty chair across the table. “May I?”
“Please,” Duncan said.
They both sat down and Daniel pointed across the room at the pool table–Sam and Jason were watching them. “How long have you been watching me?” he asked, getting to the point.
“Not long,” Duncan said as he offered a light smile. “It seemed to me as if you were bored.”
“Not really. Just thinking long thoughts.”
“Do you do that often when out with your friends?”
“What, sit back and watch or think long thoughts?”
Duncan took a drink from his glass. “Either.”
Daniel shrugged and with a grin said, “Both.” But it was an absent answer because his brain was trying to identify the man’s dialect. He didn’t have an accent, per se, but it was neutral enough to be international. What Daniel was almost certain of was that the man didn’t live in Colorado Springs. One thing told him that. The man’s appearance, specifically his hair. He was in a restaurant lounge that was one of the main hangouts of military personnel and the civilians who worked with them. He wasn’t either, not with that hair, but Daniel did sense a bit of a warrior spirit about him, though he couldn’t exactly nail down why.
“Where’re you from?” Duncan suddenly asked.
Daniel became puzzled. “I currently live here, but I’m from all over. You?”
“I travel frequently but I live in Seattle and have another residence in Paris.”
That accounted for his indistinct dialect, Daniel thought, but there was still something else about it that puzzled him. He must’ve shown that on his face because Duncan gave him a puzzled frown.
“Something I said?”
“No, sorry,” Daniel said, offering a smile of apology. “You just have an interesting accent, or rather a lack of one. No regional dialect.”
Duncan smiled, apparently with pleased surprise. “You don’t have much of an accent either, especially for this area.”
“I guess that’s why you asked where I was from?” Daniel said.
“Indeed,” Duncan nodded and took another sip from his glass.
His gaze rarely left Daniel’s face and Daniel started to sense there was something else going on. “Is there a reason for that rather intense stare?”
Again Duncan smiled, and it was his turn to offer a look of apology. “You seem very familiar but I can’t quite place you. What do you do?”
“I’m an archaeologist.”
Duncan’s brows rose. “Where have you worked? Perhaps that’s why you look familiar.”
“I don’t remember ever seeing you,” Daniel replied, and added with a touch of flirtatiousness, “And I think I would have remembered.”
“Locations?” Duncan asked again.
Daniel had to quickly think up sites he’d have been to in the last six years. “Cairo, Memphis, Abydos, Belize, and Chiapas.” They weren’t lies, exactly. Just not in the last six years.
Duncan frowned, then shook his head. “I guess I must be remembering someone who looked like you.”
Plausible, Daniel thought, then ordered his mind to stop threat-assessing. “And you? What do you do for a living?”
“I own a dojo.”
Daniel gave him a surprised grin as his suspicion of a warrior nature was confirmed. “What discipline?”
“Ninjutsu, with a few variations.” He tilted his head slightly, offering a small, bemused grin. “You don’t seem surprised.”
Daniel shook his head. “You have that bearing.” He took a breath as he wondered what Duncan was doing in the ‘Springs. And whether or not he’d be hanging around. “What brings you here?”
“Visiting an old Army buddy.”
“This isn’t exactly an Army hangout,” Daniel grinned.
“No, but he doesn’t care to hang out in Fort Collins.”
Daniel then made a show of looking around, as if the absent Army buddy had somehow appeared and disappeared. “Are you waiting for him?”
“No, we met, had dinner, but he said he had someone to see so I figured I’d hang out here for a while before I head back down.”
Daniel couldn’t tell if the man was lying or not, but he definitely knew there was more to what he was saying. It also occurred to him that if Duncan was looking for male companionship, he was in the wrong end of town, but given his demeanor and the obvious intelligence that exuded from him, Daniel was quite sure the man was fully aware of where he was.
“Truth is,” Duncan said, then paused as an enigmatic smile crossed his lips. “I’ve simply been enjoying watching you.”
It was such a blatant come-on and it made Daniel feel a blush rise around his ears and high cheeks. His dick also gave a bit of a twitch, as if putting out the welcome mat. Daniel swallowed, suddenly torn between leaving with this man and going home with Jack and Jason. “How long are you going to be here, in the area I mean?”
Duncan’s smile thinned with regret. “I’ll be leaving in a few days.”
Clearing his throat, Daniel said, “Listen, I’ve plans for the evening, but I’d like to see you before you leave.”
Duncan gave Daniel a tiny smile. It wasn’t out of hesitance or reluctant pleasure, but one that hinted at a deep, passionate lust. “I’d like that,” he said as he reached inside his black leather coat and pulled out a business card and a pen. He wrote a number on the back. “My personal cell. Call me before Sunday afternoon.”
“Not till Monday,” Duncan said as he got to his feet.
Daniel joined him, puzzled. “Other plans then?”
Duncan held out his hand and shook Daniel’s once more, but he kept his hand in his as he said, “No, I’d like a full day with you. At least.” He then let go, his hand sliding down Daniel’s and brushing his thigh before he walked past him and headed for the exit.
Daniel swallowed, hard, and tucked the business card in his front pocket. Yes, he was definitely going to call. With a sigh, he headed back down to the pool table, but Sam and Teal’c were nowhere to be found. He looked over his shoulder and they too were heading for the exit. They waved to him and he waved back, then gave Jack and Jason a frown. “Over already?”
“You ready to get out of here?” Jack asked, looking a little embarrassed.
Daniel grinned. “How much they take you for?”
Jack shook his head. “You never gamble with your subordinates, Daniel.”
Daniel barked out a laugh. “Since when? You’re always taking bets.”
“Not with Carter,” Jack added as he slung his coat over his shoulder.
Daniel grinned as he followed them out of the restaurant and ran into Jason’s back when the man suddenly stopped in his tracks. Daniel shoved at his back, making Jason stumble forward. “Watch what you’re doing, Jace.”
“Sorry,” Jason said, taking Daniel’s elbow. “I was just wondering if you guys would like to go somewhere else before heading home?”
Jack gave Jason a look that made Daniel smile. He fully expected him to ask Jason if he noticed his brain was missing. “I thought we had plans,” Daniel asked before Jack could say anything sarcastic.
Jason chewed at his lip, glanced at Jack, then with a firmer grip on Daniel’s arm, he said, “Jack, ‘scuse us, but I need to talk to Daniel for a minute.”
“You can’t say whatever it is in front of me?” Jack asked, mildly offended.
“Um, no,” Jason said as he started to lead Daniel away.
Daniel looked over his shoulder, watching Jack roll his eyes and head for his truck. “Wasn’t that kind of rude, Jason?” he asked as they stopped further down the entrance walkway to the restaurant.
“Yeah, but he’s done worse so he’ll forgive me.”
Daniel was surprised. “He has? When? What’d he do?”
Jason waved dismissively as he shot Daniel a scolding look. “Don’t distract me. Ask me another time, when everyone can enjoy being embarrassed.”
Daniel laughed softly. “Fair enough. What is it?”
Shooting a few glances over Daniel’s shoulder, in Jack’s direction, Jason lowered his voice. “First and foremost, I want to take advantage of a situation here.”
“He’d like to be alone with you so I’m gonna give him that.”
Daniel was confused. “He’s always had that opportunity, Jason.”
“Yes, but not recently, not in the past two, three weeks. He was telling me earlier today that he wished our schedules would stop preventing him from having an evening alone with you. I don’t think he was even aware that tonight could be considered one of those nights, so I think I’m gonna bail for a while.”
Daniel blinked at him, not knowing what to say.
“Besides, I’ve always wanted to check out that nightclub across town so that’s the other reason I’m taking advantage of the situation. But to make sure he doesn’t go all defensive and think this is a case of charity, I don’t want you to tell him why I’m taking off.”
Daniel continued to blink at him, eyes widening with surprise. “You could be seen.”
Jason eyed him back and lifted his chin. “First, I know how to stay under the radar. Second, anyone who’d accuse me of anything would be revealing themselves and I know how to manipulate that to my advantage.”
“And what if Jack wants you with us tonight?”
Jason sighed as he looked again over Daniel’s shoulder, watching Jack lean against the tailgate of his truck. “I know his moods better than mine sometimes,” he said. Looking back into Daniel’s eyes, he said, “Trust me. I’ll be at your place later but I don’t know when so don’t you dare wait up.”
There was a tone there that told Daniel the discussion was over. He’d heard it many times from Jack. The problem was that he was looking forward to being with Jason, too, and he couldn’t help but feel like he was being dumped. “I feel like a bad prom date,” he half-joked.
Jason started to object, but after opening and closing his mouth a few times, he ended up letting out a short, surprised laugh. “You have got to be kidding,” he said, lowering his voice even more and filling it with meaning. When Daniel simply lifted his brows at him, he sighed and said with a deliberately intense look, “If I could kiss you right now …”
“If we were anywhere else …” Daniel replied, feeling a little bit better.
“Just trust me. I’ll be with you later.”
“Wake me when you get home?” Daniel asked, putting a hint in his voice.
Jason smiled provocatively. “Won’t you be a little worn out by then?”
“Maybe Jack will,” Daniel said with a light smile, then he took Jason’s arm and turned to head back to Jack. “Now, let’s go tell him what’s going on.”
Jason groaned as they walked. “He’ll object.”
“Well you can’t very well walk off without him calling after you. Besides, it’s rude.”
Jason made another growling sound. “Just don’t mention–“
“I got it, Jace,” Daniel said, rolling his eyes again. When they reached Jack, he pushed off the truck and frowned at them.
“Okay, you ready to go or do you need more private time?” His sarcastic tone was heavily accusing.
“Um,” Jason began, “I’m gonna head across town for a while.”
“To do what?” Jack asked as his frown reformed into a scowl.
Jason gave him a knowing grin. “To go check out that club, like I’ve been wanting to do.”
Jack looked like he was going to start an argument, but to Daniel’s surprise, he simply stared at his lover, then glanced at his watch before he issued an actual order. “Fine, no more than four hours.”
Jason smiled at him, tilting his head. “Unless I hook up with someone,” he teased. The look Jack gave him made him clear his throat and swallow. “Right, not what I was planning on doing anyway.”
He hesitated, almost taking a step toward them and Daniel was certain he was about to kiss them goodbye until he realized, as stated earlier, that he couldn’t. Instead, the intent was simply made clear as he took a step to the right. “I’ll see you two later.” He took another step, then paused and threw over his shoulder, “And don’t spend the majority of the time talking.”
“Worry about your four hours,” Jack called after him.
“Promise,” Jason called back, then turned toward his vehicle, holding out his key chain and beeping off the alarm.
Daniel eyed Jack, who was still looking in Jason’s direction, and cleared his throat to get his attention. “He’ll be fine,” he said unnecessarily.
“I know,” Jack replied.
“My apartment then?” Daniel asked as a rumble of thunder echoed overhead. Jack looked up into the sky, then gave Daniel a look that he was sure matched the impending weather. “What?”
“Your apartment,” was all he said as he turned and walked around his vehicle.
On the drive there, with Jack in his rearview mirror, Daniel kept hearing more rumbles as the sky gave out brief flashes of light. It made him wonder if Mother Nature was mirroring Jack’s mood. Since the look Jack had given him wasn’t angry, the increasing humidity that came with a thunderstorm only gave off a feeling of intense foreplay. Like setting the scene.
. . .
Inside the apartment, Daniel didn’t bother to turn on the lights as he headed for the kitchen. A small lamp over the stove was always on and it gave enough light. “Beer?” he offered.
“Sure,” Jack replied as he set his keys and wallet on the kitchen table. “But only if you’re joining me.”
That told Daniel that he knew he wouldn’t be sharing a beer so Daniel revised the offer. “Jack and soda?”
A nod said that sufficed and as Daniel fixed their drinks in the partially dark kitchen, Jack opened the sliding glass door to the balcony. The storm was getting closer and with the door open, the thunder sounded all the louder. Daniel couldn’t help but find it sensual and wondered if Jack thought so too, given that he was walking out onto the deck.
“You’re gonna get wet,” Daniel said from behind him.
Jack turned and took the short glass tumbler Daniel offered. After downing half the contents, he said, “It’s not raining yet.”
Daniel gave him a sarcastic stare in return, then walked out onto the balcony to stand beside him. Taking a step to the right, he looked over the railing, then up into the sky. When he turned slightly to look over at Jack, he did a double take as he found him watching. “What?”
Glass in hand, Jack gestured at the front of the deck, then gave Daniel a look that emotionally reflected his words. “It was a little over a year ago.”
For a split second, Daniel didn’t know what he was talking about. Then he remembered and he too drank half the contents of his glass. “I don’t go out on this balcony anymore. Probably why I want to find another place to live.”
“I know,” Jack replied as he walked up behind him, copying the position he’d taken back then.
Daniel swallowed, glad to be a foot away from the railing. He’d thanked Jack back then, but it had been one of those awkward moments at the SGC. Turning his head, he leaned back a little, his body coming into full contact with Jack’s. “Thanks.”
Jack slid an arm around Daniel’s waist and lightly hugged him. “Don’t do it again.”
They were the same words he’d used after the first apology, but this time he said them in a much softer voice that sent pleasant vibrations down Daniel’s spine. “Not if I can help it,” he said, repeating his own year-old response.
Jack hugged him tighter. “I’m glad you’re here.”
Setting his glass on railing, Jack cupped Daniel’s face and turned his head, bringing their lips together. Daniel felt a little exposed, standing there on the deck, but the thrill of their being there in the dark only heightened his slowly growing arousal. He fully expected a brief kiss from Jack, a kind of prelude, but Jack opened his mouth. Daniel automatically did the same as the thrill rose inside him and the moment their tongues met, he let out a contented sigh though his nose.
Jack did the same and deepened their kiss, and after a moment and he slowly pulled away, he suggested, “How about we make a new memory here?”
Daniel blinked a few times in surprise as he looked around them. “Are you implying what I think you’re implying?”
Jack smiled against the side of his face as a flash of lightning briefly illuminated the balcony in suggestive shadow. The storm was closing in. “It’s gonna rain soon,” he said.
“Yeah,” Daniel said, waiting.
Stepping away and back to his left, Jack said with a completely straight face, “Have you ever made love in the rain?”
Daniel stared at him as several answers ran through his head, but instead of the picking the one most appropriate, he said, “Out here? Are you joking?”
Jack grinned wickedly. “Nope. Answer the question.”
“Yes,” Daniel frowned, answering almost absently since he was completely focused on the fact that Jack seemed to want to risk getting recognized by the tenants in the apartment building across the street. The lightning would make that easy and there was a probability that there’d be someone from the SGC in that building. It might not be a high probability, but there was a chance.
“You’re worrying and overthinking,” Jack said.
Daniel’s frown turned more puzzled. “I don’t get why you aren’t.”
“Because I already know that no one from the SGC lives in that building.”
Daniel narrowed his brows, then scowled when Jack began to chuckle. “You mean we could have been having balcony sex all this time?”
“No,” Jack drawled. “The Airman who used to live there was transferred to Nevada two months ago.”
Daniel’s eyes widened as he jumped to a conclusion that was, truth be told, not all that farfetched. “You didn’t.”
“No,” Jack grinned. “Happy coincidence, nothing more.”
Rolling his eyes and sighing, Daniel asked, “Do you always keep tabs on the people who live around me?”
“Do you need me to answer that?” Jack asked in return.
Daniel twisted his mouth in thought and shook his head. No, he didn’t need that answer. He wanted to change the subject, but drops of rain began to fall and they, along with the mostly verbal foreplay, were hard to ignore. As was Jack when he picked up his glass and drained it, keeping his gaze on Daniel the entire time. Again Daniel swallowed, then copied him. Taking Jack’s glass, he headed back inside and set them in the kitchen. Jack was right behind him, again, when Daniel turned around to look at him, Jack once more cupped his face. But this time, he kissed him lightly as he moved his fingers to unbutton Daniel’s shirt.
“You’re serious?” Daniel asked as he couldn’t help but follow Jack’s lead.
Very quickly, they shed their clothes, and once Daniel was naked, he was half-hard. As he retrieved lube and a condom from the living room where he’d left them, he had to admit that Jack’s idea was an excellent one. The exhibitionist in him loved the thrill and the sensualist in him loved the idea of feeling the rain. He was on his way out of the living room but stopped and went back. As Jack shot him a confused look, it disappeared when Daniel fetched a cushion from the sofa.
“Always thinking, aren’t you?” Jack quipped.
“As you are,” Daniel replied, dropping the long, three-foot cushion onto the wooden deck, then the lube and condom next to it. He cocked his head as he viewed the widely-spaced wrought iron bars of the guard rail, then turned a raised brow to Jack. “Anyone from a decent height and distance will see us.”
Jack shook his head as he pointed at the now-darkened apartment. “No lights.”
Daniel turned back around and with a bravery he wasn’t sure was sane, he stepped out onto the deck. The warm, humid air combined with the moisture in the air made his skin pebble with goosebumps. Or was it that he was standing stark naked outside? He suddenly thought of Jason and wondered if he’d do this with someone else. As Jack slid up behind him, rubbing against his back, making more goosebumps, he wiped away Daniel’s embarrassment of exposure. But despite being wonderfully distracted by his lover’s stiffening cock against his ass, he couldn’t help but ask, “Did you really mean it when you told Jason not to hook up with anyone?”
“You want to talk now?” Jack asked as he turned Daniel around to face him. When Daniel winced and made to apologize, Jack kissed him, then said, “I never said he couldn’t hook up with anyone else.”
“Not in words, no,” Daniel answered between a few more kisses. He moved his hands over Jack’s shoulders and back, loving the hot feel of him in contrast to the damp, clingy air. “You just said it with that look.”
“It’s a night club, Daniel,” Jack told him as he cupped Daniel’s ass and forced him to move back. When they reached the door, Jack shut it and pressed Daniel against the cold glass. Smiling at the way Daniel bit his lip, he said, “Clubs like that are supposed to be meeting places, not risky bathhouses to get your dick sucked or your ass fucked. He knows that. What’s your point?”
“So you don’t mind if he sees someone else?”
Jack tightened his grip and thrust suggestively. “Hello? The place we go up north?”
Daniel gasped and slid his hands over Jack’s chest, fingertips tweaking at his nipples. “I know, but away from it.”
Jack aggressively nipped over his chin as Daniel caressed him. “I’m not his keeper. He can fuck whomever he likes.”
“As you can?” Daniel breathed after another kiss.
Jack laid a hand on Daniel’s waist and guided him over till they were both straddling the sofa cushion. With a few brief prelude kisses, he then slowly kissed down Daniel’s body. “I like to stick with what’s comfortable and known.”
There was a ‘but’ in there. “But occasionally …” Daniel asked leadingly just as Jack knelt before him.
Jack gave him that familiar crooked grin as he wrapped his skillful fingers around his shaft, making Daniel groan and grab the door frame. “But occasionally … I like something new.” He sucked him into his mouth, bobbing a few times before he pulled back. Looking up, he said, “But that’s not something that ever happens outside our club. Now, we’re done talking about this.”
As he took him back into his mouth and aimed for complete and utter distraction, Daniel asked one more question. “Is there anything else you want to talk about before I do what you’re doing right now?”
“Yes,” Jack said.
The rain was coming down heavily and it was becoming difficult to distinguish the sounds of sex from the sounds of the storm. Still, Daniel had no trouble hearing Jack when he mouthed around his cock, “I want you to fuck me.”
Just the tone, spoken in a pant, had Daniel wrapping his fingers through Jack’s hair. “God yes.”
“I want you to fuck me soaking wet, on my back.”
His voice was low and heated and it made Daniel want him all the more. “Yes,” he said, pulling away and bringing Jack back to his feet. “Your turn,” he said, meaning it more than one way, then grabbed Jack’s hips and spun him against the glass door, kissing him hard before he dropped immediately to his knees. Holding onto him behind the knees, he sucked his dick into his mouth and nearly took in his entire length.
“God yes,” Jack said, hands in his hair, voice low and needy. “Suck me.” When Daniel complied with extra friction, Jack gasped and said, “I knew exactly what I wanted the moment you put that cushion down.” His fingers tightened when Daniel moved his right hand behind his balls. Spreading his feet to accommodate, Jack sucked in a breath and said, “It has to be soon.”
Pulling Jack’s very hard cock out of his mouth, Daniel teased, “What for? You’re not even close to coming.”
“Before the storm passes,” Jack clarified.
At that moment, Daniel understood. Jack wanted rain pelting down and the sky still exploding with sound. Daniel agreed as he would love to feel the showering drops on his back and ass as he thrust. Pulling back, he tugged at Jack till he was straddling the cushion again, and he was about to pull against his thighs, to indicate that he wanted him to drop down, but Jack was already ahead of him. He gave him that familiar crooked grin as he laid back, ass off the cushion and his feet planted firmly on the deck.
He looked gorgeous, Daniel thought, and began to ask, “Hand me the–” just as Jack gave him the lube and ripped open the condom wrapper himself. “You’re in a hurry,” he noted with a smile when Jack took hold of his cock and slid on the protection.
“Yes,” Jack said, then repeated the word in a hiss when Daniel reached down and slid two lubed fingers against his hole and pushed. Grabbing his legs behind the knees, he lifted and held himself still, eyes closing briefly as Daniel sought out his gland. “Fuck yes.”
The sight of him was amazingly sexy, Daniel thought, as well as unbelievably surreal. He was flushed, and shiny from the drops of rain that pelted down and pooled around his throat and navel, rolling off hard nipples and firm muscle. Between the lightning and the shadows it caused after, the muscles of Jack’s body seemed enhanced. They really didn’t need much help, and from where Daniel knelt, he was beautiful anyway. Adding to his visual was the look on Jack’s face as he prepped him: a mixture of impatience and pleasure. Completing the scene was how the deck vibrated from each clap of thunder that let loose overhead.
Daniel’s desire quickly matched Jack’s: he leaned over him, rainwater sliding down his hair and hitting Jack’s face as he claimed his cool, wet mouth just as he slid his dick through the slick, ready opening. Jack moaned deeply around Daniel’s tongue, the vibration a small version of what was happening around them. Daniel returned the moan, then took a few initial thrusts.
“Yes,” Jack whispered, breaking off the kiss and bringing his hands between them to push Daniel up. Caressing his chest invitingly, he said, “Fuck me.”
Swallowing hard, Daniel took hold of Jack’s legs behind the knee and spread his own as he pushed forward, both with his body and his cock. Deeply and slowly, he thrust, forcing Jack to suck in air and grab at the sides of the cushion to keep from moving backward. The feel of him was excruciatingly good and Daniel kept going, never stopping, and only changed angles when he wanted to find a better stroke over his lover’s gland. He found it, finally, when he took Jack’s ankles in his hands and raised them high. Jack spread out his arms, hands on the deck and an iron rod, his gaze fixed intently on Daniel’s.
He looked at him with such lust and need, such love and demand, that Daniel began to thrust deeper and harder. They were soaking wet now and though it aided his thrusts, it made his knees slide over the slick, wet wood. Gripping Jack’s ankles more firmly, and encouraged by the groans he elicited, Daniel used him for leverage as he moved his hips faster. Eyes widening, Jack took his cock in hand and began to quickly jerk himself off as he clenched his teeth.
“That’s it, I’m close! Fuck me!”
Daniel obeyed, hips slapping louder and louder.
“Faster, fuck me!”
Absolutely loving the sound of Jack’s voice giving that kind of order, Daniel let loose, driving his hips rapidly against his lover’s ass. The friction was hot and good and he wanted more, wanted it to last a very long time. But Jack had other plans as he arched back, hand a blur as he shouted a groan and came. Daniel moaned and thrust harder as his rhythm was nearly thrown off, but the sight of Jack’s dick pulsing come and his face in a grimace of pleasure seemed to be more than enough. With several gasps, he came while rainwater slid and bounced off his back. Jack reached up at that moment and grabbed him about the neck, pulling him down into a passionate kiss.
Hungrily kissing him back, Daniel’s body jerked with each spasm of pleasure that rushed through him; he could feel the same from Jack’s body underneath him. “I love you,” he whispered over his lips.
“Aren’t you supposed to say that later?” Jack teased.
“Fuck you, I’m saying it now,” Daniel replied, making Jack chuckle.
“In that case,” Jack smiled, “I love you too,” and he kissed him again. For a very long time.
Once the afterglow had passed and the rain became just rain and their skin turned cool and clammy, Daniel withdrew and stood up, then took Jack’s hand and pulled him to his feet. He bent over and picked up the soaked cushion, holding it out over the deck as he watched it drip. “I think I’ll need new upholstery.”
“Send me the bill,” Jack told him, forcing Daniel to drop it as he took him in his arms. “My treat for giving me this.” He kissed him again, making Daniel smile against his lips. “Now let’s go take another shower.”
“The warm kind?” Daniel asked as the chill made him shake. Damn that loss of afterglow.
“The warm kind,” Jack repeated and led him to the bathroom.
Jason did indeed wake Daniel up after he came home. He was a bit buzzed and earned a scold for that, but he was so extremely horny that Daniel pushed him between himself and a sleeping Jack, then proceeded down his body to give him one hell of a sleeping pill. Jack woke up long enough to kiss him as he came, which pleased Daniel no end because he loved watching them kiss.
Later, as Jason lay sleeping and Daniel went to the bathroom to brush his teeth, he thought about their kiss, wondering why that was and the only answer that came was that watching those two beautiful men kiss made him smile. That’s all. As he crawled back in bed and spooned against Jason, he thought of the vague leftover taste of come in his mouth, now mixed with toothpaste, and wondered what Jason’s come tasted like to Jack. Was it different? That thought led to Daniel to think of Jack’s come, then Dylan’s, which led him to think of their different consistencies and how sticky they each were.
Somewhere along the line, he fell asleep and once again dreamed of sex …
He was taking what seemed like a casual stroll around the SGC. Dylan was with him, and he escorted him to his office, dropped his pants, then stood there in blissful content as he was sucked. He didn’t come, but it didn’t matter, and he buttoned up and headed off in search of Jack and Jason.
Jack was in his office. Jason was in his. With each, consecutively, Daniel walked in, shut the door, dropped his pants, pulled down theirs, bent them over their desks, and fucked them.
The very odd part about that was that he didn’t come. He simply fucked them. Finished, and only partly satisfied, he left them and went in search for more. He found that in the locker room, with Jason’s subordinate, Sergeant Grogan.
And there was when things went a bit differently. The man was a virgin and Daniel got off on breaking him in, fucking him till Grogan screamed and came. But again, he didn’t come.
The locker room morphed into the lounge at T.J.’s. A crowd gathered around a couple fucking on the pool table and when Daniel, himself naked and hard, moved closer to investigate, he saw that it was Dominic and Dylan performing for the crowd. A voice whispered in his ear, asking him if he wanted to be jerked off. Daniel said he did and suddenly there were hands stroking him as he watched his lover get whipped.
At some point, still watching Dylan, Daniel found himself bent over a chair and a dick the size of a large finger was slid in and out of his ass. He frowned and grew annoyed, telling whoever it was to put something real in there or get the hell away from him.
The scene morphed into Dominic’s dungeon and this time Daniel found himself bound at the neck and wrists by what used to be called the Stockade or the Humiliator. Standing in front of him was Dominic, holding an obscenely huge dildo. Elephant dick, Daniel thought, and he started to feel a bit of panic just as someone pushed their large dick inside him while Dominic smiled and stroked the dildo.
He wanted to protest but after a few strokes and he adjusted, the dick felt good. Whoever was fucking him moaned and Daniel could’ve sworn he recognized the deep voice. “Who are you?” he asked, even as the image of the man came to him.
“M’zel,” groaned his partner.
Daniel gasped and his dick swelled with arousal. “Oh my god,” he groaned. “Fuck me, fuck me hard.”
“I knew you were good,” growled M’zel as he dug his fingers into his hips and slammed hard into him, each thrust a jar against the Stockade.
Then Daniel was coming, and coming, and coming.
The scene blurred and Daniel lay naked in a large white bed, surrounded by all his current partners, including Grogan and M’zel. In the background, blurry images of others stood waiting …
The dream awakened him and Daniel opened his eyes, staring into the dark as he frowned and wondered what the hell that dream was about. As he closed his eyes, his mind caught one thing different about this dream the others didn’t have: that edgy desperation. In this one, he was content and not once did he feel unsatisfied. With a deep, sleepy sigh, he thought of M’zel as he returned to sleep.
It was late morning and the smell through the sliding door brought in the scent of clean that only an all-night thunderstorm could bring. And some spectacular sex.
Freshly showered and dressed, Daniel stood at the entrance to his living room and looked around. He felt different–a bit restless, but there was also the feeling of peaceful content. Part of that was because he felt satisfied, part of it was because he felt an odd pleasure wearing the cock ring he’d put on after the shower. And lastly, part of it had to do with the sounds coming from his bedroom: the soft creaking of the bed and the low moans Jason made as Jack made love to him.
Daniel sighed happily, no longer feeling left out when he heard those particular sounds made without his participation. There was no more resentment, no more anxiousness, no more unresolved issues. He felt secure for the first time in a long time, and it didn’t have to do with commitments or monogamous promises. It was very much a matter of trust and respect; that was huge.
Instead of confusion, he had clarity. Well, where love was concerned. There was no dithering or shred of doubt. There was a warm ache, a feeling of contentment. Even for Dylan, who was currently so far away, and that was rather the point. Time had convinced him that near or apart, his lovers would never abandon him. Even now, he felt their love, and perhaps that was a sentimental indulgence but he didn’t care. He certainly felt Jack’s and Jason’s love last night and to an amazingly wonderful degree. It did, however, make him miss Dylan.
But right now, Daniel wanted something else. Someone else. He didn’t examine why. It wasn’t a confusion; he knew what he wanted. It was an acceptance of who he was, similar to the thoughts he’d had at the restaurant last night. He could leave right now and be secure in the knowledge that Jack and Jason wouldn’t be bothered that he’d left them alone. Of course, courtesy would demand a note.
He knew they’d be concerned about him as that went with the territory, but the big difference here was that he knew they trusted him to be careful and take the usual precautions. And that was pretty much the core of the matter. They trusted him. How long had it been since he’d actually had someone trust him implicitly? A long time. It hadn’t taken Jason much time, but Jack’s past experiences lent toward rarely trusting anyone completely so it had taken him quite a while. Now, that trust was so complete, so nearly overwhelming, that it strengthened Daniel’s love for him. He hoped that one day he and Dylan would share the same kind of trust.
At the moment, Daniel didn’t exactly want trust in the way he had with his lovers. He had the urge to be with someone who didn’t have anything invested besides sexual needs and wants. What he found interesting was that he didn’t feel guilty about that. It was all due to that trust, and an understanding he now had with his partners. What a strange paradox, to have that trust and yet be free of the usual trappings of commitment. Polyamory was a wonderful thing.
Idly, Daniel wondered if the dream he’d had had anything to do with his combined feelings of contentment and restless energy. At the moment, he really didn’t give a damn. It felt too good to analyze it to death.
So what now? he asked himself. He had no wish to join Jack and Jason and it sort of felt like a “Couple’s Day” to him, though perhaps that was just an explanation his mind generated to authorize his need for another companion. He could always hop on a flight and go see Dylan. He missed him, wanted to see him, and there was something to be said for giving him one hell of a pleasant surprise, but there was more to it than that. While Daniel didn’t want to interfere with his lover’s job, what was most relevant was that Dylan was an investment, as were Jack and Jason. He wanted something else.
He could drive up to the club, but searching out someone and going through the quick, initial introductions didn’t appeal to him. He didn’t want anonymous sex, but he didn’t want any attachments either. He could find Giancarlo, but that wouldn’t satisfy this urge. Daniel wanted a first time.
His memory latched onto something he’d forgotten about and his attention was drawn to the bureau where he kept his phone and keys. His gaze rested on the business card he’d set there, the one from the man he’d met at T.J.’s. Duncan. Walking over, he picked up the card and stared at the hand-written number, flicking at a crisp corner as he remembered how the touch of that man’s hand had quickly aroused him. With a hopeful smile and an agreeable swell from his dick, Daniel picked up the phone and dialed.
~ The End ~