OK, this is my first post...took me long enough!
Comments are extremely welcome. Job offers, chocolate, or Chicago cops are even more welcome, but I figure I've got a better chance of getting comments.
Warnings, like y'all need them: m/m premise, a little strong language, nothing much resembling a plot, and it *wasn't* supposed to end like that...
And the disclaimer: Due South is the property of Alliance, not me, and this story does not intend to supersede that copyright. It is a work of fan fiction, done out of love for the characters, not for profit.
It was a hell of a lot easier just to pretend he was asleep.
That way, Fraser couldn't ask any more questions, or provide helpful suggestions about finding the woman who'd nearly run Ray over a few days before. Ray could just lean back in the chair and watch Fraser through half-closed lids.
Life had gotten so complicated, these past few months. It wasn't even a question of "Does he he want to...." It hadn't even gotten that far; it was still strictly a question of "Do *I* want to?" His life had fallen into a comfortable pattern since the divorce: the occasional date; even more occasionally, something that lasted long enough to be called a "relationship"; but always, at the end of it, he was alone. It had been years since he and Ange had split up, but it was too soon to change things. It was easier that way. Simple.
Fraser seemed pretty simple, on the surface. And maybe he was, as long as, by "simple," you meant honest, direct, straightforward. As long as you didn't make the mistake of equating "simple" with "stupid." But for a simple man, he could make things unbelievably complicated without even trying.
For example, Ray would've bet his entire paycheck on the fact that there was no ulterior motive in Fraser's mind when he got up from the table and stretched. He was tired of sitting, and maybe a little stiff, that was all.
Which did absolutely nothing to change the fact that Ray sat transfixed by the contracting and relaxing of long, well-defined muscles, surreptitiously admiring the casual grace with which Fraser moved. Trying to visualize what it would be like to lie wrapped in those solidly-muscled limbs.
No need, really, to be so careful. Fraser probably wouldn't mind him looking. Probably wouldn't notice any intent behind it; Fraser didn't seem to realize that other people didn't let their better nature control their behavior. No need at all, for faking sleep. For pretending--to the best of his limited acting ability- -that simply watching Fraser stretch wasn't enough to have sent shockwaves of arousal through his body.
No need at all. Except that things would get complicated, and he didn't know what to do with complicated.
He hadn't been serious about finding that blonde--well, not really. He'd been in shock when she kissed him, and it *had* bowled him over, but that had faded. Only...it was easier to keep on being interested in this mystery woman--this woman he'd never find-- than to deal with the way he felt about Fraser. This could keep his mind off Fraser for days, maybe weeks, even though he'd never find her.
Or so he'd thought, until Fraser had pinned him down with a question about how you knew you'd met the right person. "You just know," he'd said, breezily. Then, with dread growing in the pit of his stomach, "You just know." _Oh, shit._
He just knew, all right.
Which would make one serious mess out of his life, the way Fraser had been doing for months. And it wasn't like he really needed things to get any more complicated than they already were.
Fraser was looking out the window now. Ray could see his reflection in the glass, but he doubted Fraser could see him. He could open his eyes all the way, letting them hungrily travel the length of the other man's body. Devouring with his eyes what he wanted to taste, to touch... One hand slid down his stomach, halting just above his rigid cock. _No._ Fraser might notice the movement. Best to keep his hands at his sides and just watch.
His actual feelings toward Fraser weren't in question, and he was fairly sure they were obvious to all and sundry. Even to Fraser. Simple, straightforward: Ray liked him, Ray loved him (though not quite like a brother, unless your family was a bit more interesting than Ray's had been), Ray frequently wanted to strangle him. Nothing that would leave Ray's stomach twisted into knots when Fraser smiled at him. Nothing that would leave him sprawled in a chair, hard and aching, almost dizzy with the need to touch Fraser.
But in addition to being a good friend, Fraser had to go and be, quite unconsciously, incredibly sexy. Maybe it was because it *was* unconscious. Nothing calculated about it at all, about the way he moved, the look he got on his face when he was lost in thought, that slow, sweet smile. He didn't seem to know what he did to people. What he did to Ray. That was the best part of it; you knew it wasn't just a game, something to get attention, because Fraser didn't know he was doing it. Even though he was *very* good at getting attention, and not just Ray's.
Even the moonlight (well, a streetlight, probably, but that wasn't very atmospheric) was caressing Fraser; Ray traced one shaft of light as it stroked the thick, dark hair, lingered over the broad expanse of shoulders. Followed the light down Fraser's back, down to where it curved over his ass, stroked the solid thighs.
And if it were his hands tracing their way down Fraser's body, and not just a trick of the light? What would he do then?
His hands were shaking; he curled them into loose fists, trying to control the trembling. _You are not going to touch him. You are *not* going to screw this up by blundering in like a complete idiot. It's too soon. Wait until you're sure._
_But I am sure,_ he argued back.
_Wait until you're sure you won't make a fool of yourself telling him._
_That long, huh._ Oh great, now he was talking to himself-- *arguing* with himself. Fraser brought out the latent nut-case in him, Ray suspected; he never *used* to talk to himself.
He realized, suddenly, that Fraser had started speaking some time ago. For a moment, he concentrated on the sound of his voice rather than the actual words, the low, gentle tones that Ray's body responded to like a touch. He clenched his teeth to prevent himself from blurting out everything he wanted to say. _Too soon. It's way too soon to tell if this would work._
"...and it snowed for a day, and a night, and a day," Fraser was saying. Snow? What on earth was he rambling about now? If it was another Inuit story, Ray didn't want to hear it.
Then the actual *sense* of what Fraser was saying began to penetrate his skull, very much like an ice-pick. _Oh my God. A woman._ It was inevitable, he supposed.
But then Fraser went on. "It ended...badly. She had a darkness in her."
It had ended. It was over. And she must've hurt him, from the way he sounded now. _Forget her, Benny. Turn around._ If he turned around now, Ray would ignore the voice telling him it was too soon, would get up and take Benny into his arms and...
"...and the most beautiful voice."
And it didn't *sound* over, after all. He risked another look at Fraser's face in the reflection. _Definitely not over. Damn, damn, damn..._
Ray closed his eyes again. If Fraser turned around now, Ray would keep pretending to be asleep, ignoring the hunger his body felt for Fraser's, ignoring the stab of Fraser's quiet confession through his brain and heart. He dug his nails into his palms, trying to will his erection to subside. _Things are back to being simple, at least. He's not interested in you--or anyone, it sounds like. That'll teach you to complain about things getting complicated._
And the voice in his head changed its tune to _Too late._
-- Rache Jacobs email@example.com "I got the anti-Christ in my kitchen yellin' at me again..." --Tori Amos