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fic: A Stiff Neck

Title: A Stiff Neck
Author: fengirl88
Fandom: X-Men: First Class AU
Pairing: Erik/Charles UST
Rating: R
Warnings: none
Wordcount: 1536
Disclaimer: These characters are not mine.
Summary: “Lie down,” Xavier says, gesturing to the bed.
Erik stares at him. He appears to be perfectly serious.
A/N: Part 4 of the Patterns of Light series. Many thanks again to [personal profile] kalypso for invaluable beta suggestions, and to everyone at ushobwri, dofp_marathon and #xmentales for their encouragement.

“Speedwell must be the original one-horse town,” Xavier says ruefully.

It certainly doesn’t look like the kind of place that’s going to have a hotel, or even a motel.

“Julie Lorimer who runs the basket shop has a room she lets sometimes,” the mechanic says. “Up along Mountain Peak Lane, the white house on the corner.”

One good thing – maybe the only good thing – about travelling with a telepath, there’s no difficulty in persuading Mrs Lorimer to put them up for the night. The room is sparsely furnished – Erik suppresses a sigh on seeing the double bed and hard wooden chair – but it’s clean, and the bathroom’s right next door.

Erik’s neck and shoulders are screaming with tension after the last couple of hours, and he’s going to take the longest shower in the history of creation, never mind if there’s no hot water left for Xavier.

Xavier winces, as if Erik’s thoughts pain him.

So don’t listen then, Erik projects at him.

“Lie down,” Xavier says, gesturing to the bed.

Erik stares at him. He appears to be perfectly serious.

“That’s not how this works,” Erik says, as if Xavier doesn’t already know.

“You’re planning to sit up all night again,” Xavier says. It’s not a question.

“I slept in the car,” Erik says.

Yeah, and look how that turned out. He should never have trusted Xavier to drive –

“Believe it or not, I didn’t cause the car to break down,” Xavier says, stung. “I want this to be over, every bit as much as you do. I would also like to get to DC in one piece, if possible, and you need to sleep tonight if you’re going to do the job Agent MacTaggert sent you to do.”

“I don’t want to lie down, I want a shower,” Erik says. “I have a stiff neck.”

He can see Xavier biting back You can say that again or some such crack.

“I know. Your shoulders are practically up around your ears.”

That gets an unwilling snort of laughter from Erik, and Xavier grins as if he’s scored a victory.

“Lie down,” he says again. “On your front. I’m quite good at this.”

Possibly the understatement of the year, Erik discovers, as Xavier digs his fingers into the painful knots of muscle and works to loosen them.

“Fuck!” Erik yells. He hopes Mrs Lorimer is out of earshot.

“Sorry,” Xavier says. Erik can tell he’s trying not to laugh. “Look, it’s better if you don’t clench your fists.”

Impossible fucking know-it-all. “Ow!” Erik says.

“Too hard?”

“No, it’s OK, just –”

“Here,” Xavier says. “It’s easier like this.”

He moves so he’s straddling Erik’s hips, the weight of his body pressing him down against the mattress. Erik tenses up at the contact; he doesn’t think it’s easier like this at all.

“Breathe,” Xavier says. He still sounds amused, but less obnoxiously so.

Erik breathes. Now and then he groans, or swears under his breath. Xavier’s hands are clever and strong, and he probably shouldn’t be thinking about that, because it’ll only lead to trouble…

After a while it stops hurting; Xavier’s touch is still firm but less hard now, and the pressure of his hands makes Erik sigh with pleasure. It’s been a long time since anybody touched him without wanting to inflict pain, and the relief of it is perilously sweet. He feels his limbs becoming heavy, waves of drowsiness pushing through his body, and he knows he’s very close to falling asleep, half-dreaming now.

He must be dreaming those strange sensations that seem so real: the pressure of Xavier’s cock, hard against the small of his back, and the touch of Xavier’s lips against the nape of his neck.

Erik wakes up to find it’s just after dawn. He’s still in his clothes, and – judging by the arm thrown over his waist – so is Charles. Xavier, he corrects himself. It’s difficult to go on thinking of someone formally after he’s massaged you into a state of near-boneless relaxation. Erik stretches a little, experimentally; nothing hurts. Clearly Charles Xavier missed a great career as a physio.

Whatever his career actually is: Erik’s never been quite sure. Apart from his role as Shaw’s lover and MacTaggert’s star witness, that is. Xavier’s not much of anything at the moment, apart from deeply asleep, his regular breaths stirring the short hairs on the back of Erik’s neck.

And now Erik’s aware of that, he’d better get up before something disastrous happens. He can feel his cock stirring and taking an interest already at the nearness of Xavier’s body, warm and heavy with sleep. At least Xavier isn’t naked this time, Erik thinks – and that thought sends a jolt of desire right through him, remembering yesterday morning and what he’d wanted to do to Xavier as he slept.

Get out of bed while you still can, he tells himself, though his treacherous body is clamouring to stay, to press back into Xavier’s warmth and drag his hand lower to where Erik wants it, to close Xavier’s fingers around his cock and thrust into the ring of his hand…

Erik moves Xavier’s arm carefully from around his waist, and rolls out of bed, heading for another useless cold shower.

Xavier is still asleep when he comes back into the room, but stirs at the sound of the door shutting. He opens his eyes and stares at Erik as if he’s never seen a man with a towel wrapped around his waist before. Erik drops the pile of yesterday’s clothes on the bed and turns away to fish the last clean shirt and underwear out of his attaché case. He can feel Xavier’s gaze burning into him.

“Morning,” Xavier says, sounding so warm and unguarded that Erik turns round in surprise.

Xavier’s still staring at him hungrily, as if he can’t get enough of looking. Erik thinks about saying Take a picture, it’ll last longer, but he doesn’t need to: Xavier flushes up to the roots of his hair and looks away.

“Did you sleep OK?” Erik asks, because MacTaggert would want him to deliver her witness in good shape, after all.

“Fine, thanks,” Xavier says, not looking at him. Erik gets the feeling he’s lying, but there’s no point in arguing about it.

“You knocked me out,” Erik says. “Best night’s sleep I’ve had in a while.”

Xavier looks up at that and grins. For once Erik doesn’t feel like punching him for looking smug.

“Told you I was good,” Xavier says.

You can say that again, Erik thinks, and feels Xavier’s warm amusement in response.

It’s properly light now, the sun coming bright through the thin striped curtains.

“We should get going,” Erik says, and Xavier sighs.

Can’t blame the guy for not wanting what lies ahead. Erik knows it’s tough for telepathic witnesses in the court system – Xavier will have to wear a collar or take suppressant pills so he can’t influence the jury. And then there’s what comes after, even if the trial goes to plan and Shaw ends up permanently behind bars. Witness Protection, a new life somewhere away from everyone Xavier knows and cares about. If he has anyone in his life –

I don’t need your pity, Xavier’s voice says, sharp in his head. Aloud he says “I hope you’ve left me some hot water.”

Erik isn’t about to mention the cold shower; he just nods.

Breakfast is a silent affair; Mrs Lorimer seems less friendly than she did last night, and Erik wonders whether Xavier’s telepathic influence has worn off. Or maybe she heard the noises he was making in response to Xavier’s massage and drew her own conclusions. At least she’s not likely to call the cops: he’d flashed his badge at her last night when she asked to see some ID for her records.

He pays her what she asks, and gets her to write out a receipt, which she does grudgingly – MacTaggert is a stickler for paperwork. And then he and Xavier sit stiffly in her front parlour, not speaking or making eye contact, waiting for the car to turn up.

Erik tries not to stare at Xavier’s hands or remember how they felt on his body last night. He should never have agreed to that, however tired and aching he was. Why the hell Xavier even offered is a mystery, given the way he’s acting now.

It’s only half an hour, sitting there in silence, but it feels like a lifetime. Erik heaves a sigh of relief when he feels the car approaching: he was beginning to think the mechanic hadn’t passed the message on, though probably Xavier could have done something with his telepathy.

The driver is a young black man he doesn’t remember seeing before, Armando Muñoz.

Is he OK? Erik asks Xavier. His ID looks real enough, but the last thing they need right now is another abduction attempt by Shaw’s people.

Yes, he’s safe, Xavier says. And he’s a mutant, he adds, sounding pleased.

Xavier and Muñoz talk genetics – well, Xavier does most of the talking – for the next solid hour, while Erik stares out of the window. For the record, he is not sulking, just preoccupied.

Also posted at http://fengirl88.dreamwidth.org/147695.html with comment count unavailable comments.


( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
Apr. 17th, 2014 01:02 am (UTC)
Oh yeah. No jealous sulking there. *shakes head*
Silly boys are in denial. *pets them*

Yay for an update. :)
Apr. 17th, 2014 01:47 am (UTC)
thank you! and no, of course Erik is not sulking... *grins*
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )


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