Category: First time
Summary: You walk around this corner, take that bus, while your partner chooses another route and yet you end up at the same destination
Thanks to: Ladyivy for whipping my dreadful grammar into shape and for catching a few inconsistencies *g* - Thank you kindly for a job well done.
Ben looked across the table at his partner, who was contemplating his fries. Or at least what the waitress had brought when Ray had asked for fries.
Judging from the look on Ray's face, he was none too sure about them ever having had anything to do with potatoes at any point, either.
Focusing for a moment entirely on his friend, Ben took his time to look at Ray. They saw each other more or less every day of the week, but Ray rarely sat or stood still long enough for Ben to fully enjoy watching him.
And he did enjoy it. It was Ben's guilty pleasure; to watch and enjoy Ray's energy and his charm and attitude that, in any other man would drive Ben crazy, but in Ray it worked. Not that Ray could not drive Ben crazy. He did, several times a day.
There was the correcting whenever Ben said something slightly wrong, mangled an idiom or two, although Ben had to admit that these days it was not because he did not know the right words, but he quite enjoyed Ray's exasperation.
See, that was another of Ben's guilty pleasures. It was a slippery slope, because what had once been a short nearly non-existent list, was now a list as long as his arm, if not longer.
A lot of it involved watching or listening to Ray in any and every way that he could.
The pale lighting of the diner they were seated in would not make anyone look healthy, but Ben did not care. He kept watching Ray and he kept enjoying it. Although these past few days something had been slightly off, today even more so.
Ben had noticed an increase of the frown line between Ray's eyebrows. It was not much, but it was there and Ben could not help but wonder what had put it there, if in some way he was the cause for it.
Under the table Diefenbaker shifted in his sleep. They were all tired, they should be back in their beds, separate homes, if one could call Ben's office a home. It was, in a way, although Ben was not blind as to why he stayed there, why his belongings could fit into a bag and could be packed in a few minutes.
It did not, as Ray would put it, take a rocket scientist. Not that Ben understood that saying completely, because he would have thought a psychologist would have been more apt...
Like with Ray, there were a lot of things that Ben did not understand.
Across the table from him, Ray poked his fries experimentally. When they remained inanimate on his plate, he dared stuffing one into his mouth. Wrinkling his nose, which Ben was embarrassed to admit he found rather endearing, Ray chewed it down.
Ben looked down at his own sandwich and wished he had not ordered it. It was supposed to be a simple ham and cheese with lettuce and tomato, but it resembled no food Ben could remember having ever seen or attempted to eat.
Then again, who could be picky at 0300?
They had been at a stakeout for the past hours and once their turn had ended, and detectives Huey and Dewey had taken over, Ray and he had been reluctant to part ways. Hence they were sitting in a diner at 0300, possibly angling for food poisoning.
Ben took a sip of the water, not enjoying the faint taste of chlorine. He would have liked to ask for a cup of tea, although on second thought, he was not sure he dared, considering what Ray's coffee looked like with its shiny, oily surface. Actually, Ray had taken one sip and made a face. Considering the state of the coffee he normally drank at the precinct, it did make Ben wonder how much worse this had to be.
Ray looked tired, and still there was that worry line that fascinated as well as worried Ben to no end.
Suddenly said line deepened and Ray stopped chewing. He still did not look up, but Ben stared at him, watching and recognizing this state. He had seen Ray do it before when hashing out a problem. Every part of him seemed to still, all that vibrant focus turned inward and it never failed to make Ben feel warm and cold all over.
Ben had even, on occasion, wondered what it might be like to actually be the sole focus of Ray's. He shivered though he was by no means cold. On the contrary.
Across from Ben, Ray's face suddenly flushed with color. Before Ben could wonder what had caused that, Ray suddenly smiled, the frown line changing as the rest of the lines of his face melted into an entirely different constellation.
Serene was not a word Ben would ever use about Ray, especially not to his face, but Ben had trouble finding the right words to describe Ray's expression. Until it changed into simple, low-key happiness. Just a softening of the lines and a light smile on those maddening lips.
Ben licked his own and too late he realized that Ray had looked up and was watching him with a mixture of surprise and wonder. And something else that Ben was unsure how to decipher.
"Ray?" Ben was embarrassed as his voice did not come out in its usual strong timbre, but far rougher and huskier than he had intended.
Ray seemed to shake himself a little, blinked and then the smile was back, just playing at the corner of Ray's mouth. "Yeah, Frase?" he asked.
"Is everything as it should be?" Ben managed to ask, this time slightly more in control. At least that was of which he tried to convince himself.
"I... yeah," Ray said. "It is," he continued with a mild look of surprise on his face. Shaking his head a little, he pushed the plate away and yawned. "Let's blow this joint," he said, getting to his feet.
Ben looked down at his own plate and nodded. Nudging the tip of his boot against Dief's side, he looked under the table and when the half-wolf finally looked up, he gestured toward Ray who was waiting next to the table.
"We are leaving," Ben enunciated clearly. Dief did tend to be a little slow when waking up. Ben was unsure if it was just a thing the wolf did to annoy him, or if Dief might just be getting on in years.
Dief stood and yawned widely before padding over to Ray to nose against his hand. Ray's smile made Ben shiver again. It seemed no matter what Ray did, it had the most unsettling effect on Ben's libido and his composure.
In silence they walked to the car, and Ben let Dief into the back of it before putting the seat back in place and sitting down himself.
Ray yawned again and turned the key in the ignition.
"Are you awake enough to drive?" Ben asked quietly. He knew what the answer would be, yet he felt the necessity of asking.
"Yeah, I'm good, Frase," Ray said. "I'm good," he repeated, the same odd smile on his face as before.
Pulling away from the curb, Ray turned the car in the opposite direction of what Ben had expected. "Ray?" he asked, feeling a little unsettled yet... oddly elated as well.
"You're not going to get any sleep at the Consulate," Ray said forcefully. "Come home with me."
It was not so much a request as a statement. One that Ben felt he could not turn down.
Ray took his silence as agreement anyway and hummed under his breath as they drove through the empty streets of Chicago. Ben tried to place the tune, but he could not and he did not really care. Ray was happy, it seemed, and that made Ben happy too.
Through the drive and entering Ray's building, they said nothing to each other. Ben felt so at ease with their silence that he wondered why he had never been introduced to this quiet, contented side of Ray before.
Once inside the apartment, Ray pushed Ben toward the bathroom. "Get ready for bed," he said. Ben opened his mouth to argue, to let Ray take his turn first, but he was silenced by a yawn taking him completely by surprise.
Ray laughed. "Go," he said. The last thing Ben saw as he went inside the bathroom was Ray kneeling down to ruffle Dief's fur, much to the animal's delight.
Ben quickly washed his face and found the spare tooth brush he knew Ray kept for him in the medicine cabinet. Taking one last look at himself in the mirror, he realized how tired he really was. His eyes were a little red and the skin under them was darker than he had thought it would be.
As he entered the living room, Ben shook his head. "Dief," he began, admonishing Diefenbaker, who had curled up on the couch. The couch was an adequate size, but it was by no means big enough for the both of them.
"Ben," Ray's voice, low and warm stopped him. Turning around, he found Ray watching him from the doorway to the bedroom. With a slight tilt of the head, he took a step backward, into the darkened room.
Ben stared for a moment or two, frozen to the spot in the middle of the living room. Ray had turned off most of the lights except from the string of chili pepper lights. The low lighting along with the shine from the street outside put the apartment into a near twilight setting.
The bedroom was like a dark void waiting for him to enter.
Ben could hear the rustle of the sheets on Ray's bed. Before he could stop himself he had taken two steps forward. Grinding to a halt he admonished himself for making presumptions as to Ray's hospitality extending this far.
Staying where he was, Ben had no idea for how long he simply stood there, like a statue. He could not move, not back, nor forth... There was another rustle of sheets and Ray reappeared in the doorway, looking slightly impatient and more than a little amused.
Dressed in boxers only, Ray's upper body seemed so very pale in what little light there was. Ben's breath caught in his throat and he wondered if he would simply stand there until he fainted from oxygen deprivation.
Ray shook his head and walked forward, though Ben still found no motor skills worth speaking of. At least none that could help him in any way. Ray stopped in front of him, cocking his head to the side. He said nothing, simply stared at Ben as if he could dissect his thoughts by sheer willpower.
Reaching out, Ray took Ben's hand, pulling him forward. Ben staggered at first, trying to find his feet, feeling like he thought a baby might, upon taking its first few, unsteady steps.
Ray kept walking backwards, leading Ben, step by step, closer to the bedroom. Stepping over the threshold, Ben took a deep breath, filling his senses with Ray's scent. This room was a scary but delightful experience. He could smell Ray's hair gel, and another scent he figured must be how Ray smelled when his body was overtaken by sleep. Warm skin, a little sweaty.
Ben closed his eyes for a moment and took a deep breath. He realized that Ray had stepped up close to him and he did not dare open his eyes. What if it was all a dream? A mere tease of his subconscious?
"You think too much." Ray's voice was barely audible, but what nearly undid Ben was the feel of Ray's breath against his own face. So close, so very...
Something soft and warm pressed against Ben's lips and his eyes flew open. Ray curled his fingers under Ben's chin and brushed his thumb over the bottom lip again.
Letting go of both Ben's hand and his chin, Ray started to undo the buttons of Ben's shirt. Ben thought he should stop him, but as he lifted his hand to intervene, Ray looked straight into his eyes and shook his head.
"We're only stopping here if this is not what you want," Ray said quietly. Tilting his head to the side, he smiled a little. "I go by instincts, Frase, you know that..." he waited for Ben to nod before he went on. "And my instincts are telling me that you want this as much as I do."
Ben let out his breath that he had not been aware of holding back. He could not find any words to convey how he felt, yet asking Ray to stop was the thought furthest from his mind at that very moment.
"I'll take that as a yes," Ray said, sounding every bit as breathless as Ben felt.
Slowly, but efficiently, Ray stripped him down to his boxers and his undershirt. Somehow Ray must have sensed Ben's nervousness and deemed it necessary that Ben kept a little more on than he himself had.
Stepping back, gathering the covers that he had obviously dropped onto the floor earlier, Ray climbed into the bed. Lying down as if there was nothing new about Ben being in this bedroom barely dressed, he pulled the sheets up, holding one side in the air as a gesture to Ben.
"Come on," Ray said, his voice still quiet as if he was afraid of scaring off Ben. "We don't have to do anything wild..." Ray chuckled. "I think we're too tired to anyway."
Ben felt his body warring with itself. He wanted so much to lie down and explore this fascinating new aspect of his and Ray's ...partnership, yet as Ray had so aptly put it, they were far to tired to attempt anything.
"We'll just cuddle and get some sleep," Ray said and even if the lighting was only enough to show him the outline of Ray on the bed, Ben just knew from the tone of voice that Ray's smile had turned to a smirk. "We'll see what we can get ...up to after a good night's sleep."
Feeling his face heat, Ben deemed it the right time to climb into bed before Ray's ill-veiled suggestions overrode his body's tiredness. Ben felt inelegant as he slid down next to Ray, all arms and legs.
"I'm dreadfully sorry," Ben said for the fifth time as he elbowed Ray in the stomach.
"Fraser...," Ray said with a laugh. "Ben...," he continued, as if trying the name on for size, the arms around Ben's body tightening. "Relax."
Ray pulled him in close, twisting until he lay with his front to Ben's back. Ben could feel the heat and hardness against his buttocks, equaling the one tenting his own boxers. It was not so bad, though. It was a pleasant ache now that Ben was fairly sure Ray intended to do something about it once they were more rested. And he was right; Ben knew if they started anything there was a real danger that they would both fall asleep mid-act.
Ben wondered if Ray might be related to an octopus with the way he seemed to have more than two arms and two legs, wrapping himself around Ben the way he did. It was ...oddly comfortable, even if Ben was unused to sleeping with anyone else in the bed.
Rubbing circles on Ben's stomach, Ray buried his face against the back of Ben's neck, his breath warm and slow against Ben's skin. It tickled a little, though Ben was not about to object.
Even with the light throbbing in his groin, and the semi-hardness that was now pressed into the cleft of his buttocks, Ben could not keep awake. His eyes drifted slowly closed with the jumbled images of what Ray could come up with in way of delightful antics come daylight.
Ben blinked sleepily at the wall. It did not seem familiar yet... The memories from the night hit him and Ben felt his face flush with color. Ray was still plastered to his back, but either he was having some very pleasant and vivid dreams or he was not asleep either.
Still, there was something off about Ray's scent...
"Sorry, didn't meant to wake ya," Ray breathed against his neck. Not that he sounded sorry at all.
Ben sniffed again. "You've been out," he said, his voice still fuzzy with sleep. He was surprised that Ray had managed to slip out of the bed without Ben noticing. He must have really been down for the count after last night.
Ray laughed a little, the puffs of air stirring Ben's body, quickly waking it up. "I was outside with the wolf," he admitted. "And," he continued, pulling at Ben until he rolled over onto his back. "I needed to pee anyway, so there," he finished before leaning in, quite unselfconscious, to kiss Ben. Just a small peck to the lips.
"You also brushed your teeth," Ben said, wondering if perhaps he should go do the same, unsure what the proper conduct of such a situation would be. Ray, however, made the decision for him by rolling on top of him. Sitting up astride Ben's hips, he pulled at Ben's undershirt.
"Lose the shirt," Ray said huskily and for once Ben did not argue with him, simply did so, compelled by the widening of Ray's pupils. There was hardly any blue left in his eyes and Ben gave in, arching a little to rub his awakening erection against Ray's backside.
Ray's eyes drifted shut as he leaned down, put his hands on either side of Fraser's head and pushed down hard against Ben's groin.
"Somehow I think we'll have to wait with the more advanced stuff," Ray panted, "I'm not going to last very long," he continued with a laugh.
Ben squirmed and slid his hands along Ray's thighs. Going up onto his hands and knees, Ray grinned down at him. "Boxers too."
It was quite amazing that Ben had enough blood left anywhere in his body for his face to flush with heat the way it did, but he felt like doing whatever Ray demanded of him this morning. He wanted to be with Ray every step of the way.
Once his own boxers were off, Ben watched as Ray bent his neck and looked down between them. With a low whistle, he looked back up, heat in his eyes. "Very impressive piece of Canadian wood there," he teased huskily.
Ben forced his own shyness down and took hold of the elastic of Ray's boxers. Slowly, he pulled them down over Ray's buttocks, eased them down over the angry erection that bobbed close to Ray's body, defying gravity.
Ray breathed a little harder, but he lifted first one leg, then the other to get the boxers down and off. With a moan he lowered himself on top of Ben, depriving Ben of the view of Ray's erection.
Not that Ben would complain, because now it was nested next to his own and as Ray began moving, Ben could no longer keep his eyes open. Sliding his hands up and down Ray's back, he finally settled them, cupping Ray's buttocks.
The movement, the touch, seemed to spur Ray on and finally they were moving, pressing against each other, rubbing and sliding and Ben wondered if he might not survive. Sweat slicked their bodies and Ben bit at Ray's jaw, feeling the stubble against his tongue and lips.
Ray tilted his head and finally, finally they were kissing for real. Deep and passionate and Ben knew that he would not be able to survive such pleasure. It was pure overload of his sense. He held, squeezed and stroked Ray's body, feeling the warm skin against his own.
Ben moaned as Ray deepened the kiss. The slick and warm tongue filled Ben's mouth and he could not help but suck on it, teasing the strangest and neediest noises from Ray's throat.
Even if the world had ended they would not have been able to stop what they were doing. Rolling around on the bed, Ben found himself on top and as if this was a dance they had done a thousand times, they did not break stride.
Ray spread his legs further, hooking his heels under Ben's thighs and arched up against him, driving their erections against each other, trapping them harder between their bodies.
Twisting his mouth from Ben's, Ray rolled his head back, eyes wide open but unseeing. A long, drawn out shout made Ben's ears ring. Coupled with the warm heat and the shaking of Ray's body, it drove Ben onward. With a growl he bent his head down and bit into the skin where Ray's shoulder met his neck.
"Ben!" Disbelief and joy seemed to war in Ray's voice, but Ben could not bring himself to care. Driving harder down against Ray's body, he could feel his own end drawing nearing.
Slamming down against Ray again, and again, Ben finally felt his body tightening with its release. He was sure that Ray would have some colorful terms for it all, but the only way Ben could describe it would be that he came so hard his soul must have momentarily taken leave of his body.
Collapsing on top of Ray, it took a minute or two of trying to draw in enough oxygen to think before Ben realized he might be too heavy.
Ray put a hand firmly in the middle of Ben's lower back and licked at his shoulder. "You're not to heavy," he said as if he had guessed what Ben was thinking about.
Their bodies were already sticking together from the mixture of sweat and semen, but Ben could not bring himself to care. All he could think about was the fact that Ray was holding him and that they had just...
Ben's body futilely tried to react to his thoughts of what Ray and he had just done.
Ray's laugh was low and warm against Ben's ear. "We'll do more later," he promised and Ben realized that obviously, their silent communication had carried well over into the bedroom.
Leaning up on his elbows, Ben looked down at Ray, wondering what he had done to deserve such a proud and brave man. Ray stared up at him, eye clear and warm, lips red from their kissing and his hair even more experimental than normally.
"What?" Ray asked, licking his lips and grinning when Ben unconsciously mirrored the move.
"You are a very brave man, Ray Kowalski," Ben said, feeling his sincerity and admiration filling his voice.
"Nah, you're not that dangerous," Ray joked, his cheeks flushing a little from embarrassment.
"I can assure you," Ben said quietly, "I mean every word. All I did was yearn, Ray. You are by far the braver of us, taking the chance that you did last night."
Ray swallowed visibly but before he could say anything to oppose the words, Ben leaned down and kissed him. The kiss might have lacked the insane passion that their previous ones had held, but it had every unsaid word and emotion that Ben could ever hope to share with Ray.
It felt odd to be kissing a man, feeling the stubble against his lips, but Ben did not care and nor did, it seemed, Ray.
When they parted, Ray looked completely shell shocked, until his lips finally began turning up at the corners. "I had my hopes," he said before he reached up and pulled Ben down for yet another kiss. And another.
Really, Ben was glad that neither of them had to be at work until much later, because he would be happy to stay in bed, kissing Ray for as long as possible.
Ray's hands, warm and sweaty landed on Ben's buttocks, squeezing lightly. And maybe do a little more than just kissing, Ben amended silently.