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Deliberately

Deliberately

by stompy sara

rated: r

warnings: language, slash (m/m situations)

notes: frustration. this is utter nonsense, by the way. enjoy, or not. either way, it's out there now. lyrics from aimee mann's 'you could make a killing.'

~~~~~~~~~~

His eyes were sore from not crying.

He told himself he would not talk to Face. Deliberately he cat-footed down the stairs of the borrowed townhouse, ignoring the silent figure on the couch below the landing. He marched into the kitchen.

Where the hell was the vodka.

Ignoring the silent figure on the couch (again), Murdock stomped into the living room, swung the door to the bar open. Yes, Stoli did make a cheaper, yet just as Russian, vodka. He pulled it to him, stalked into the kitchen. Better to get fucking smashed than to feel this pain. The carton of orange juice in the refrigerator beckoned him. He poured himself a damn good Screwdriver.

Better than this pain. . .

Face did not stir as Murdock crept back up the stairs. He stared at the back of Face's head, pausing on the landing. The television droned beyond them, trying to intrude on the tableau. Murdock drew in a deep calming breath.

(ignore ignore ignore your heart breaking)

Back up the stairs. The vast bedroom was cold. The vaulted ceiling did nothing for conducting or keeping the heat from the furnace. He abandoned it for the smaller, cozier study. Books, mostly his, lined the shelves. Murdock slumped into the leather chair. Downed half the drink absently (deliberately).

He felt numb.

That was better.

He stared vacantly. Put Aimee Mann on the stereo.

There is nothing that competes with habit
And I know it's neither deep nor tragic
It's simply that you have to have it
So you could make a killing. . .

He knew the man's habits. Why try to change them? Why think that Face would become a different person just because he'd found love? Why think that love was the answer to everything?

Because he'd always felt that way. Even the oppressing Texas summers of his neurotic childhood had elicited a few rare instances of passion. Emotional fire. Although never this way...

Never the way he thought it would be.

Dammit, he knew he was being unfair. Knew it was all part of the con, that it had to be done sometimes. But did Face have to enjoy it so much? Did he have to act surprised when Murdock needed a little reassurance? Did he have to get defensive? Did he. . .

Face opened the door to the study. Leaned in the doorway. His blue, blue eyes were flat with hurt. He said nothing.

Murdock stared, his own brown eyes burning with unshed tears.

"Yeah?"

Nothing.

"Ya got some great excuse for today? Or you gonna blame me for over-reactin'?"

Something flickered in Face's eyes, but he didn't move.

"Nothin' ta say, Facey? Cat got your tongue?"

"I can't talk to you," Face said shortly. He wouldn't or couldn't look in Murdock's eyes.

"You think everything's my fault," Murdock said to his glass. Took another long swallow. He was very close to not giving a shit. Close, but not quite. "Play the tragic hero, Faceman."

The hard look in Face's eyes crossed over into frustrated anger. He stood there blocking the doorway, chest rising and falling rapidly.

"It. Was. A. Job. Okay? Hannibal needed me to seduce the fucking villain. Villainess. So I did. End of story."

"Uh-huh." Murdock finished off his drink. Maybe one more would tumble him into oblivion.

"If you can't handle it, then just say so," Face said loudly.

"I can't handle it," Murdock retorted instantly. They looked at each other, startled. Murdock stared into the empty glass. Frosted. Just like Face to see to the details. "You still like it, Facey. Admit it. You like the way they look at you. The way you turn heads when you walk into a situation and take charge. The way it feels to have them pressing themselves against you." Murdock stopped himself, listened to his crushed heart struggling to function. "And I'm just props for your stage."

Face was kneeling in front of him. Took Murdock's hands in his, gently. "You're being silly," he said softly.

Murdock felt a tear slide down his cheek. "Yeah," he said, his voice hoarse. He looked up then. Face's eyes were bright.

"I can't do this if you won't help me," he said, pressing Murdock's hands more urgently. "You know how hard it is for me to - "

"So don't."

"I have to."

Murdock closed his eyes. He hated himself sometimes. "I know," he managed. He leaned forward, closed Face in a tight embrace. Hugged him even tighter. "I know."

The bed was cold, but the blankets were soft, and thick, and many. Murdock laid Face down gently. Traced his lover's cheekbone. Slid his fingers down the lean muscles of the chest, the hard stomach, to the hip. Face inhaled sharply.

"Don't ever doubt me," he whispered.

Murdock smiled.

"Wasn't you I was doubtin'."

***

In the bedroom window, two candles guttered, then steadied. The flames were lean and bright.

Otherwise, the room was dark.

~end


Deliberately by Stompy Sara

 

 


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