Fandom & Pairing: Star Trek Reboot (aka AOS, ST XI, etc.), Pike/McCoy
Warnings: Non-con, slavery, mpreg
Word Count: around 6,700
Summary: Everything had changed on Burning Night, and Leonard was just surviving from day to day. Then a certain gray-eyed Commandant appeared and everything changed again.
Disclaimer: Any resemblance to anything whatsoever is purely coincidental.
A/N : This is set in an AU based on Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale. You should read Part 1 first or this won't make any sense.
After that, it was like a dam had broken, because Chris and Len couldn't get enough of each other. They fucked over practically every surface in the house, and quite a few spots in the back acreage as well. More than once, they'd been walked in on, either by Frederick or Hannah, and Len couldn't even bring himself to be embarrassed, not when Chris's cock was buried to the hilt in his ass and every hard thrust pushed him higher and higher toward some unnamable paradise. The vidcam had been removed from the bedroom, thank god - apparently even the bastards on the Council were satisfied that Chris was doing his "duty."
Len never thought he could be so greedy for it. Even in the Before Times, his sex drive had always been pretty average. But apparently he just hadn't been with the right person because now, he discovered, he was completely insatiable. He craved Chris's dick, and anytime he had to go without it for more than a few hours he found himself getting snappish and irritable, until Chris came home, bent him over the nearest piece of furniture, and fucked his brains out.
Then he'd be loose-limbed and relaxed, sarcastic but still affectionate, the way he'd always been with his lovers. The way he had been with Jocelyn. And Chris - Chris would have a sparkle in his eye and his entire face would be lit up with warmth and mischief, and he'd find a way to catch Len by surprise - maybe with a pinch on the ass, or maybe with a flying tackle followed by a tickle war.
The way they fit together was so easy, so natural, so damn rapturous that the realization that he was in love with Chris really shouldn't have taken him by surprise.
He was on his back on their bed - and now it truly did feel like their bed, and their room - and Chris was leaning over him, pushing Len's thighs up toward his shoulders as he pounded brutally into Len's already-sore hole. They were both slick with sweat and Chris was groaning pretty much continuously while Leonard was chanting Chris's name over and over, a litany of pleasure-pain and a plea for more.
And then Leonard was coming, and coming, and thick strands of semen were spurting out of his cock with every pulse of his blood through his body, and then words were coming out too, totally beyond his control: "Oh God, oh fuck, I love you, Chris."
And that sent Chris over the edge - as soon as he heard the words, Chris let out a broken cry and his whole body arched and spasmed as he shot his load deep within Leonard's body.
They were both shaking by the time Chris carefully withdrew and then collapsed onto the bed next to Leonard, immediately drawing him into his arms. Neither of them spoke for a long while, and then Chris said softly, "Did you mean it?"
Len hesitated, briefly considered lying, and then realized he'd never get away with it. Chris could read him too well. So instead he said, "Yeah, Chris, I meant it. I didn't know it until I said it, but it's the truth." He held his breath, waiting for a response.
Chris's face was infinitely sorrowful as he said, "Len, I don't - I can't - " he broke off, apparently not knowing how to finish the sentence.
Leonard looked away, blinking hard against the sudden stinging in his eyes. "Yeah, I get it."
"No, you don't," said Chris. He reached out, cupped Leonard's chin with his hand, and gently forced Len to turn his head back and meet his eyes. "I - care for you, Len, I do, but I can't afford to let myself love anyone. It would be used against me by my political rivals. Anyone I loved would be in danger of being taken from me and used as a hostage, or tortured for information, or killed as a 'lesson' to me. I can't do that to you. I won't."
Leonard could see the truth of Chris's words in his eyes, but the knowledge didn't much help. It still meant that he was in love with a man who didn't love him and never would.
He swallowed the lump in his throat and rolled out of bed, walking toward the bathroom. "Just gonna clean up," he said thickly. If he was in the bathroom longer than it should've taken, and his eyes were red-rimmed when he came out, well, Chris didn't comment.
Leonard got back into bed, lay on his side facing away from Chris, and closed his eyes. When Chris touched his shoulder gently, he shrugged it off. Eventually he heard Chris sigh, then Chris went into the bathroom to clean up, climbed into bed and stayed on his own side, not touching Leonard. Leonard told himself that was the way he wanted it anyway.
Things between them weren't the same after that night. Oh, they still fucked like rabbits - Leonard couldn't deny his physical ache for Chris, and Chris knew how to play him like an instrument, wringing pleasure out of him until he was left sobbing and begging for mercy.
But their conversations were stilted and awkward, Leonard wouldn't look Chris in the eye, and he shied away anytime Chris tried to touch him for any reason other than sex. He was desperately trying to make himself fall out of love with Chris, and he was failing miserably. But he'd be damned if he'd let Chris see him weak and vulnerable, so he kept up the pretense that he didn't want anything from Chris but his body. Maybe if he pretended long enough, one day it would be true.
It was against this backdrop that Chris announced one evening that they'd be adding another servant to the household - a combined handyman and groundskeeper. Leonard didn't know what had happened to the last person to hold that position, and he didn't ask. It was better not to know.
He merely grunted and continued eating his dinner, ignoring Chris's exasperated sigh. He didn't really care if there was going to be another servant, couldn't see how it could possibly impact him, and anyway he wasn't going to give Chris the satisfaction of showing any interest.
Which is why he was completely caught by surprise by the arrival of the new member of the household the next day.
He was in the library, trying to concentrate on a book, but the words kept swimming before his eyes. He was so exhausted that he couldn't properly focus, and trying was giving him a headache. At that moment, he heard the front bell ring. He wasn't going to go get it - wasn't his place, and Hannah was pretty pissy when she felt like someone was encroaching on her territory.
He heard the door opening, and Hannah murmuring, and then he heard Chris's footsteps crossing the hall, heard Chris welcoming the newcomer. At this point, his curiosity got the better of him, and he figured he'd at least take a peek. He stepped from the library out into the front hall, his eyes adjusting to the bright light streaming in from the open door. After he'd blinked a couple times, he was able to see the silhouette of a man, and as he took a few steps forward, he could see the man's face.
Leonard's breath caught in his throat. "Jim?" he said, aware that his voice was a barely-there croak. It must've been audible, though, because Hannah, Chris, and the newcomer turned to look at him.
Jim looked equally stunned, but only for a moment. Then he grinned widely and shouted, "Oh my god, Bones!"
Leonard felt frozen, but he managed to stumble forward one step, then two, and then he was grabbing Jim and crushing him in a hug that he knew was far too tight. He couldn't make himself ease up, though, and judging from the way Jim was clutching back, the feeling was mutual.
When he finally let go, he held Jim at arm's length, with his hands on Jim's shoulders. "Jesus Christ, Jim, I can't believe it. Never thought I'd get to see you again. Where have you been? What have you been doing? Why are you here now?"
Jim laughed and cut off his babbling. "Whoa, Bones, slow down there. Plenty of time for catching up. Man, it's good to see you."
Len's throat felt tight. Jim had been his best friend from practically the moment they met until the day everything changed. Jim was a survivor, always had been, so Len had hoped Jim had made it somehow, but he never actually thought he'd know for sure. Leonard blinked back tears and pulled Jim into another bone-crushing hug, which Jim returned enthusiastically.
A cleared throat finally broke them apart. Chris was looking at them with one eyebrow raised and an unreadable expression on his face.
"I take it you two know each other," was his comment.
Leonard couldn't respond - he was too busy grinning like a fool at Jim, unable to believe his own eyes. Jim, of course, had more control over his emotions, always had, and so he answered Chris, his eyes briefly flicking away from Len's.
"Yes, Commandant. We knew each other in the Before Times." Jim's voice was bland, and his eyes were shuttered as he looked at Chris, only softening and brightening when they moved back to Len.
The answer was obviously not as detailed as Chris wanted, and his jaw tightened in response. He seemed likely to demand more information, but Jim was already speaking again, this time to Leonard.
"Bones, I can't believe it. What are you doing here? I would've thought a world-renowned surgeon would've been snapped up by the Regime to treat its highest-ranking members." Jim's tone as he spoke of the Regime bordered on disrespectful, but never quite crossed the line. Len couldn't help shaking his head ruefully as he remembered how often Jim had used that almost-impudent tone to piss off authority figures.
"Naw, Jim, didn't you know that science is passé? Now prayer is the highest form of medicine. Doctors are out of style." His voice was sardonic, playing perfectly off of Jim's near-disrespect. He almost laughed in delight - damn but he had missed this easy rapport, the interplay between them.
Chris was obviously not amused. "Leonard, get up to the bedroom, now. Jim, Hannah will show you around and explain your duties. You can start by mucking out the cow's stall."
Leonard winced - it was easily the least pleasant job on the estate, but Jim just tossed off a snappy salute and said, "Yes, Commandant!" in a tone that flirted with the edge of sarcasm but that Pike couldn't quite call him on.
Leonard felt a surge of resentment at Chris's orders. He turned to go, but just before he did, he caught a wink and a mouthed "Later," from Jim, and suddenly his heart felt lighter than it had in a very long time.
Chris followed Leonard up to the bedroom, closing the door firmly behind them. "What was that about? What is Jim to you?" he demanded, voice hard.
Leonard felt his ire rising. He'd just seen his oldest friend, one he'd thought was dead, and Chris had pulled him away from their reunion to grill him about Jim, out of some petty sense of jealousy or territorialism? Oh, hell no.
Leonard clenched his jaw. "What did it look like, Chris?" he all but sneered.
Chris's face was stony. "It looked like my bearer, my property, draping himself all over some other man."
Leonard felt the blood drain from his face. It was the first time Chris had ever made Leonard feel like a thing, a possession. A slave. All the excitement, all his happiness at seeing Jim was ashes in his mouth.
Seeing his reaction, Chris sighed. "Come on, Leonard, you know I didn't mean it like that."
Looking straight into his eyes, Leonard said, "Yeah, Chris. Yeah you did."
Their eyes locked and held for a moment. Chris looked away first, and Leonard felt a bitter surge of satisfaction.
"Look, just - don't do it again," Chris said, finally.
"Don't do what again, Commandant? Don't smile at a man who was my best friend for years, who I thought I'd never see again? Don't hug him? Don't interact with him? What, specifically, are my orders, sir?"
Chris winced, but then his face hardened. "You want specifics? Fine. Don't go near him. Don't talk to him. And Leonard, don't you ever touch him again."
Leonard gaped, aghast. "I can't even talk to my best friend? What the hell, Chris?"
"Maybe at some point. But not - not until I can be sure I can trust you around him."
Any possibility of Leonard explaining that he and Jim were friends, nothing more, flew out the window with those words. Chris didn't trust him. Didn't believe that he could stay faithful, or that he would choose to. Well, fuck him. Leonard had no intention of staying away from Jim, no matter what Chris said.
With a massive effort, Leonard suppressed the urge to tell Chris exactly what he could do with his orders. Instead, he snapped, "We done here?"
"Not yet," Chris said, obviously holding onto his own control by a thread. "What did he mean, a 'world-renowned surgeon'?"
"The words aren't that difficult, Chris, I'm pretty sure you understand them. But there's a dictionary in the library if you need some help."
"Do not get cute with me, Leonard, I'm not in the mood," Chris ground out. It only pissed Leonard off more. Of course it was all about Chris's mood, Chris's needs and wants and preferences. When it came down to it, no matter what fancy words he spouted about not believing in owning slaves, that's what Leonard was to him. Suddenly Leonard couldn't contain his anger, and didn't even want to try.
"You're not in the mood? You're not in the goddamned mood? What about my mood? That doesn't matter, though, does it? What Commandant Pike wants, Commandant Pike gets. Fine - you want to know? I'll tell you.
"I was happy, Chris, in the Before Times. I was successful. I was educated. I had two Ph.Ds. and an M.D. with board specialties in general surgery, neurosurgery, and exobiology. I developed a brain-stem grafting technique that revolutionized the field. I wrote a text on comparative alien anatomy that was required reading at most med schools. Oh, and by the way, I also had a wife and a beautiful three-year-old daughter. All of it's gone now, Chris, all of it. My wife dead, my little girl - " he choked. "God knows where Joanna is, or if she's even alive. There, Chris, does that satisfy your curiosity?"
There was silence. Chris looked like he'd been gut-punched, and normally Leonard would have felt awful about that, would have even tried to comfort him, but at the moment he didn't give a shit. He gritted his teeth, refusing to let the tears fall. He never thought about Joanna. Never let himself. This was why. It hurt too much. So goddamn much. So much that some days, he thought about just ending it. It wouldn't be too hard - he didn't have any drugs left in his med kit - all of those had been confiscated - but he had a small laser-scalpel tucked into the lining of the satchel that either no one had ever found or didn't care enough to remove. It wasn't big enough to make an effective weapon anyway, but it was more than enough to do the job he had in mind. Just a quick slice across any of his major arteries, and his suffering would end. It was a compelling thought.
But - he couldn't. Every time he thought that this time he'd had enough, he was going to do it, Joanna's image would come into his mind, still in her fuzzy purple pajamas - she'd been peacefully sleeping when suddenly everything went to hell on Burning Night - her dark hair mussed and tangled from struggling against the uniformed thug who was dragging her away. He could see her face, her eyes wide with panic, her cheeks red from screaming "Daddy, daddy!" over the shoulder of the man carrying her. It had taken three men to hold him back in his desperate struggles to go to her.
He'd never seen her again, had no idea what had happened to her. But if there was a chance, however infinitesimal, that she might still be alive, that one day he might find her, then he couldn't give up. Had to hang on, no matter how much it hurt.
He turned away from Chris, unwilling to let him see Leonard so vulnerable. He felt Chris approaching him from behind, felt the light touch on his shoulder. "I'm sorry," Chris murmured. Leonard didn't know what Chris was sorry for - for what had happened to Leonard? For being a jealous asshole? But Leonard wasn't in a forgiving mood. He shrugged off the hand.
"I'm going for a walk," he said gruffly. Then he practically tore out of the house, ignoring Chris's shouted "Leonard!" from behind him.
He stayed out until it was dark and cold, and only his need for warmth drove him back to the house. The house was quiet and still, with only one light on. Chris was waiting for him in the living room, looking haggard.
"Sit down, Leonard. I'm going to make you some hot tea and get you something to eat. Just stay there."
Leonard was too weary in body and soul to put up a fight. He just nodded briefly and sank down onto the leather couch. He tilted his head back and closed his eyes, wishing for the millionth time that things could just go back to the way they were in the Before Times. It was a foolish dream, though, and he didn't let himself linger over it for long.
When he opened his eyes again, Chris was standing in front of him, watching him, and for one infinitesimal moment Leonard could have sworn that all the sorrow and love he felt for Chris was reflected back at him. Then it was gone, Chris's face locking down. He handed a plain white mug to Leonard - chamomile tea, from the scent of it. Chris set a plate down on the low table in front of Leonard - bread, cheese, and sliced sausage. Suddenly Leonard was ravenous. He ate, taking sips of tea, and slowly he started to feel some of the ice that had built up inside him since the fight with Chris start to thaw.
Chris watched him as he ate. When he'd had his fill, he sank back into the couch cushions and sighed. Chris seemed to take this as his opening.
"I'm sorry for your losses," he said quietly.
Leonard shrugged and looked away. "Not like I'm the only one. It's a pretty common story."
"That doesn't make it any less painful. I'm sorry for your losses, and I'm sorry that I never bothered to ask you about your life before. I should have."
This time Leonard looked back at Chris. "It doesn't matter now. What's done is done. Where do we go from here?"
Chris looked a bit startled at this. "What do you mean, where do we go from here? We go on, the same as we have been. What else would we do?"
Leonard rolled his eyes. "Chris, one thing I've learned is that nothing ever stays the same. So, what about Jim? I'm not going to stay away from him. He's my best friend - nothing more, nothing less. And Chris, I hope you know, if you send him away to keep him from me, I will never forgive you. Anything you want from me, you'll have to force me to do, because I will never willingly let you touch me again." It was a hell of an ultimatum for a slave to give his owner, but it was the truth. Some things were unforgivable. Pulling him away from Jim when he'd just found him again was one of those things.
Chris blinked as he absorbed this, but otherwise showed no outward reaction. Finally, he gave a brief nod. "I won't send him away. I won't forbid you to talk to him. But Leonard - be careful. Don't cross any lines. If I find out that you have, he'll be gone so fast you'll hear the sonic boom, and I'll make sure he can never get back to you again."
Leonard gritted his teeth against the wave of fury and humiliation this threat brought on. Still - he'd started it. Chris had just finished it. So it seemed like they had a deal. He nodded shortly, not trusting himself to speak without exploding. Chris relaxed back into the couch, apparently satisfied at having made his point.
Leonard rose from his seat, wanting nothing more than to fall into bed and sleep for an eternity. But Chris's voice, soft but steely, stopped him in his tracks.
"Oh, I don't think so, Leonard," he said. "Take off your clothes and come over here."
To Leonard's shame, his cock leaped at the words, hardening so fast it was painful. Maybe his mind was pissed at Chris, but his body had other ideas. Well, it wasn't like he had a real choice here anyway, so he might as well go along with it. He turned back, stripping his shirt over his head. When he could see again, Chris had undone his pants and pulled his cock out, but was otherwise still completely dressed. He was stroking himself lazily, looking at Leonard with predatory intent.
"Now the rest of it," he ordered, and Leonard helplessly obeyed. For a long moment, he just stood there, naked, nipples and cock erect, his whole body ready to follow Chris's slightest command.
"Very nice," Chris said approvingly. Then he took something from his pocket -- looked like a small packet of lube -- and tossed it to Leonard. Yup, lube. "Get over here and fuck yourself on my cock. Ride me hard. Don't touch yourself. Come if you can, but without touching yourself."
Leonard shuddered slightly, his feet already moving him toward Chris before he'd fully processed the words.
Surmising from his tone that Chris was low on patience, he quickly ripped the packet open, slathered the lube all over Chris's stiff purple cock, and then straddled Chris's lap. He aimed Chris, lining him up with his hole, and then started to ease himself down. Chris was having none of that. He gripped Leonard's hips firmly and pulled him down hard, impaling Leonard on his cock in one harsh movement.
Leonard's breath caught -- it hurt, so damn much -- but his cock twitched eagerly, and with Chris's hands on his hips, urging him on, he began a rhythm that was fast, hard, and just shy of unbearable. Leonard was gasping and groaning, now, and Chris was speaking, like he usually did when they fucked.
"Yeah, Leonard, like that. Good boy. Fuck yourself harder for me now. You're mine, all mine. God, look at how gorgeous you are, and how hard. You love this, don't you. Love it when I fuck you. You can't get enough, can you?"
Luckily he didn't expect Leonard to answer in words, because Leonard was far beyond the ability to speak anyway. He was close, so close, he was on the edge of coming, but Chris was too, and if he didn't get off before Chris did then he wouldn't be getting off at all. He leaned forward a bit, bracing his hands on Chris's strong shoulders, and slammed himself down hard before pulling back up, getting what friction he could against his cock from Chris's abdomen. His eyes were closed and he was reaching for his orgasm - it was so close now. Just -- there. Yeah.
He let out a shout of completion, opening his eyes to see Jim standing beyond Chris's shoulder, in the shadows of the room, a look of mingled anger, sorrow, and disgust on his face. Leonard choked on a sudden wave of shame, but he was too far gone to stop now, and he shuddered his way through his orgasm while Chris pulsed inside of him, letting out his own triumphant howl. He looked down, taking in the expression of unalloyed ecstasy on Chris's face, and when he looked back up, Jim was gone.
Ironically, it seemed that Chris didn't have anything to worry about, between Leonard and Jim. After what Jim had seen, Leonard couldn't face him. He avoided Jim like the goddamn coward he was, turning tail and fleeing anytime he saw Jim, despite Jim's obvious desire to talk to him. He didn't need to talk to Jim to be reminded how far he'd fallen. He was nothing more than a whore now, spreading his legs whenever he was told to, and practically begging for more.
He didn't hold out much hope that he'd be able to avoid Jim forever. Honestly, though, he'd expected to do better than three days. He'd forgotten how determined the kid could be - and more than that, how devious.
Leonard was enjoying his customary afternoon ramble around the property. He'd just reached his favorite spot - under the branches of a large spreading oak tree - and was sinking down to sit a spell, when there was a rustling above him and suddenly Jim Kirk was landing lightly on his feet, grinning down at Leonard.
"Gosh, Bones, if I didn't know better I might think you've been avoiding me. That could kinda hurt a guy's feelings."
Leonard rolled his eyes. "Nice to see some things haven't changed."
"You mean my persistence, physical prowess, and quick wit?"
"I mean you're still an infant."
Jim just grinned again, plopping down to sit facing Bones.
"Make yourself at home, why don't you," Bones muttered.
"Thanks, I will. Now, what gives? You looked happy to see me at first and now you're acting like I've got Andorian Plague."
Leonard looked away. "You know damn well what happened, Jim."
Jim's face darkened. "You mean I saw Pike raping you. Bones, you didn't honestly think I'd hold that against you, did you? I thought you knew me better than that."
Leonard was at a loss. He wasn't prepared for a Jim who wasn't disgusted with him. But Jim had got the wrong end of the stick. "Jim, I - "
"Don't worry, Bones, he'll get what's coming to him. No one hurts one of mine and gets away with it."
Leonard was a bit bemused at Jim's easy claiming of Leonard as "one of his," even after so long. He felt honored that Jim was so protective of him, but he couldn't let Jim believe something that wasn't true. He didn't want to say it, didn't want to see the disgust on Jim's face that this time would be for Leonard. But he wasn't a liar, not even a liar by omission, and he wasn't going to start now, with Jim of all people. He blew out a sigh.
"Jim - it's not like that. With me and Pike, I mean."
"It isn't like what?"
"It isn't - rape." He had to look away as he said the word. "I - I'm a willing participant, okay? You saw - I got off too, after all."
He dared a peek back at Jim, expecting anger and revulsion, but all he saw was concern. "Do you think whether something is rape is determined by whether the victim gets off or not? Come on, Bones, you know as well as I do that certain physical reactions are involuntary."
Shit. He really didn't want to go there with Jim, didn't want to explain, but he was going to have to. "No, Jim. You've got it all wrong. I - I'm in love with him, all right? Now you can go ahead and hate me." He looked at Jim defiantly.
Jim just shook his head sadly. "Shit, Bones, you've been Stockholmed."
"Stockholm Syndrome, Bones. It's when a hostage - "
"I know what it is, Jim. I haven't been 'Stockholmed,' all right?"
Jim was unconvinced. "Oh yeah? You telling me you'd be here willingly - you'd have chosen to be Pike's bearer, his property - if you'd been given a choice?"
"Well, obviously I'd rather not be property. And maybe I wouldn't have chosen this life, or Chris, at first, but I've gotten to know him. Jim, he's not a bad person. He's been good to me. Patient. Gentle."
Jim muttered "Stockholmed" under his breath but Leonard pretended not to hear him. Silence fell for a few moments, and then Leonard suddenly remembered something that Jim had said earlier.
"Jim - what did you mean when you said that he'll get what's coming to him? And that no one hurts one of yours and gets away with it?"
Jim stared at him for a long moment, seemingly trying to peer into the depths of Leonard's soul. Then he shook his head slowly and regretfully. "I'm sorry, Bones. There's too much at stake. I wish I could trust you, but - I can't. Not your fault, man. But I can't."
"Jim, what the fuck are you talking about, and why are you being so goddamn mysterious?"
Jim grinned his quicksilver grin. "You know me, Bones, I like being cryptic, especially because I know how much it drives you crazy." Then he sobered again, so fast that Leonard almost doubted he'd seen that grin at all. "You've got to be careful, Bones. Things aren't what they seem on the surface."
"What things? How the hell can I be careful if I don't know what the I'm supposed to look out for?"
Jim considered that for a moment, then nodded. "All right. I can give you this much. Watch out for Hannah. She's a Regime spy. She watches all of you, but mostly she's here to keep tabs on Pike."
Leonard blinked at Jim in confusion. "A Regime spy? Jim, why on earth would the Regime need to spy on one of its own officers?"
Jim barked a laugh, then leaned forward and patted Leonard on the cheek. Leonard pulled back and glared.
"Oh, Bones, I'd forgotten how charmingly naive you can be." Then he sighed. "Look, all governments are paranoid, but one like the Regime? Doubly so. Look, just - watch what you say and do around her. And you did not hear that from me."
"Sure thing, Jim." Leonard's head was spinning with Jim's revelations - why did everything have to be so damn complicated? He shook his head as if to clear it, and Jim gave him a sympathetic smile.
"Bones, you don't have an underhanded bone in your body. Everyone always knows where they stand with you. It's one of the things I always liked most about you."
He sounded so wistful that Leonard's heart ached for him. "Jim, I - "
Jim shook it off and stood up. "Got to be getting back before I'm missed. But Bones - something to think about - do you know exactly what it is that Pike does for the Regime? And don't you think you ought to know before you decide that he's not a bad person?"
And with that, Jim took off jogging into the trees, back towards the house. Leonard stayed beneath the tree for a long time, sorting through everything that he just happened. The things Jim had said, and just as importantly, the things he hadn't said.
Leonard may have been naive, but he wasn't stupid. So - all right. There was a spy for the Regime in the household. Hannah. Presumably to make sure they were all loyal to the government. He wondered if Frederick knew, if that was why he didn't like her. He wondered if Pike knew - knew that one of his own household was spying on him, reporting on him. Not that Leonard thought there would be much to report - from what Leonard could tell, Chris's loyalty was beyond question.
That, then, led to the topic that he'd been avoiding thinking about, from the first moment he'd been here. What was it that Chris did? It had to be something pretty important, for him to hold the position he did, have his own estate, servants, and his own private bearer.
Anything that was that crucial to the Regime... well, it couldn't be anything good. Frankly, Leonard didn't want to know what it was. He slept better at night not knowing. But Jim knew him too well - now that the seeds of doubt and curiosity had been planted, there was no way he'd be able to let it go. Damn Jim for coming along and wrecking his comfortable state of willful ignorance.
That night, getting ready for bed, watching Chris undress, he knew that he wasn't going to have a moment's peace until he'd taken Jim's advice. He took a deep breath.
"What's your position with the Regime, Chris?" He winced a bit at how blunt the words sounded, but subtle had never been his strong suit anyway.
Chris looked at him, mouth tightening. "I'm a Commandant. You know that, Leonard."
Leonard flushed, pissed now. "Don't play games with me, Chris. You know what I mean. What, exactly, is it that you do in your duties as Commandant? What do you do for the Regime?"
If possible, Chris's mouth tightened even more. "Goddamn Jim Kirk," he said, instead of answering the question.
Leonard immediately caught the implication and his mouth sagged open. Slaves and servants, after all, didn't have last names. "How do you know his full name? Did you know him in the Before Times?"
For a moment, Leonard thought Chris wasn't going to answer. Then, reluctantly, he spoke. "I knew George and Winona. I knew Jim when he was a young child - too young to remember me."
Leonard gaped. "You knew his parents? You knew his father? Good god, man, you've got to tell him. He knows next to nothing about his father and - "
"No." Chris's voice was harsh. "Looking backwards does no good. Jim needs to learn that. You've just got to accept what is."
"The past has lessons, Chris, if we look for them. And Jim's father was a hero. Don't you think that's something we could use more of in this day and age?"
Chris's eyes hardened. "That's dangerously close to treason, Leonard."
"What, saying that we could use some genuine heroes? That maybe some things need changing? That things aren't perfect and that maybe the Before Times were better?"
Chris stepped forward and grabbed Leonard, one hand behind his head and the other clapped over his mouth. "Shut the fuck up, Leonard," he hissed, as furious as Leonard had ever seen him.
Against his will, his body reacted to Chris's proximity. His heart started racing, and his cock hardened in his pajama pants. He let out a muffled whimper against Chris's palm, hating how easily Chris turned him on, but unable to deny it. He saw Chris's pupils dilate and his nostrils flare as he took in the heavy musk of Leonard's sudden arousal.
Chris leaned forward to whisper in Leonard's ear. "I'm going to let you go now, Leonard, and you're going to get naked and get on the bed, face up. Don't say a single word unless I ask a question that requires a direct answer. Do you understand me?"
Leonard nodded helplessly, his eyes squeezing shut as his arousal threatened to overwhelm him. Chris chuckled darkly.
When he laid himself down, Chris surveyed him with an air of possession. "Let's give Hannah something to report back to her handlers."
And with those words, suddenly Leonard was pissed off, all over again. So Chris did know about Hannah - had known about her for who knows how long - and he'd done nothing.
"You goddamned coward," he spat. For a moment, there was a shocked silence as they both realized what he'd just said.
Then Chris was on him, twisting his arms up over his head painfully, pinning him to the bed with his body.
"You've got a smart mouth, don't you?" Chris asked conversationally. He sounded completely disinterested. It was the most chilling thing Leonard had ever heard. "You want to know what I do for the Regime? Fine, I'll tell you. I'm the Director of Domestic Security. I control the Home Guard - recruiting, training, and deployment. Riot control. Counter-terrorism. Sometimes I even handle prisoner interrogations personally. It's something I'm good at." At this, he gave Leonard a bleak smile, looking at him with eyes that, for the first time, held no hint of emotion. They were empty. Leonard shivered. "Is that what you wanted to know? Or would you like more detail?"
Leonard closed his eyes and shook his head. He didn't want to hear any more. Hell, he didn't want to hear what he already had.
"You have such lofty ideals," Chris said with a small smile and still with that empty look in his eyes. "But, Leonard, you knew I didn't pet fluffy bunnies for a living, didn't you? What I do - it's what allows me to have this home that you live in, the grounds that you ramble. The books you love to read and the food you enjoy so much. Hell, it's what lets me have you - if I didn't have the standing to acquire a private bearer, you'd still be in that hellhole, bending over for anyone who wanted to fuck you.
"Tell you what, Leonard - if you're so offended by my ill-gotten gains, if you're so revolted at the thought of what I've had to do for us to live like we do, then I'll let you go. I'll take you back to the Centre tomorrow, pick out a different bearer. You can go back to the way things were before you met me. Is that what you want? Tell me, Leonard. Yes or no."
Chris's body was rigid as steel over his. Leonard couldn't move a muscle. And he was trapped by Chris's gaze, frozen like a mouse in a hawk's shadow.
He should nod. He should open his mouth and say "yes" and get himself out of this whole situation. But - despite everything, he loved Chris. And he didn't want to leave Jim behind. And, in his heart of hearts, he had to admit that he didn't want to go back to the Centre. He'd been dying there by inches, a death of a thousand cuts. If he went back now, after having what he'd had with Chris - he knew he wouldn't last long. He wouldn't want to.
Slowly, painfully, he shook his head. Then he forced himself to say the words. "No, Chris, I don't want to go back."
He felt Chris's body relax against his as some of the tension left his frame. He felt Chris's lips, skimming his ear. Felt Chris draw in a breath as he prepared to speak. Then he heard a soft whisper. "I'm not the only coward in this bed, Leonard."
Chris rose from the bed and walked out the door, closing it behind him.
Continue to Part 3