Slashababy for littlemimm, who requested Marton/Orlando with smut and/or angst. Bring on the angst, baby!
Disclaimer: I do not know these men, it's all made up and I don't expect they would behave in this manner or have these feelings. No money is made.
Pairing: Orlando Bloom/Marton Csokas
Warnings: Angst (lots of it)
AN: Not my usual pairing, you could say, but hopefully not a million miles off the mark... oh, and it's angsty.
FB: Yes please, always appreciated.
Thank you so much to the incomparable baranduin for the beta and suggestions :)
God, I ache. All over. I've got a fantastic bruise coming up on my right elbow and a really attractive graze right across the bridge of my nose. Makeup are going to have to pull out the stops with that tomorrow. Never mind.
You can't beat a good, hot bath. With bath salts; not bubble bath but the real old fashioned salts. Can feel all my aches dissolving. This is the best I've felt all fucking day.
It’s, what, 10.46 p.m. He'll ring. I know he will. He wouldn't miss my birthday. And what a birthday! The cake from the crew was not totally unexpected but even so, it was great. And the women at the gate, screaming "Paris!" and "Will!" and "Casanova!" as I drove out. There were even a few screams of "Legolas!", though not as many as there used to be. Which is good. He's hanging in the closet, Legolas.
When I was eighteen, I used to think twenty-five was fucking ancient. When I was twenty-five I thought thirty was the time you knew it was all behind you. When I was thirty, I thought forty was the pits and I was never going to be forty. No way. Well, next year it's the pits, indeed. How did it come to this? To turn thirty-nine? I should have gone belly up at thirty-three, that's a good romantic age to die, thirty-three… Yeah, I should have died at thirty-three. No getting old or fading away. Jesus Christ died at thirty-three, I think. And so did Evita. No angsting over grey hair. Thirty-three. Six years ago, I should have gone then. Ha ha.
Yeah, should have gone then.
One of the joys of a good bath is letting some of the tepid water out and then refilling with more hot water. Showers are good in the morning but when you've been pushed out of an armoured personnel carrier, and rolled around in a quarry, all bloody day, a hot bath hits the spot. A hot bath and a double whiskey. Oh yes.
Kurt was cute. He was definitely giving me the eye. Twenty-three and a body to die for. Not that mine is shoddy. I still get asked to do the centrefolds, still can cut it in the sex scenes. I have no worries. For thirty-nine, I'm looking damned good. But Kurt has the body and the looks and the, well, the youth. He can't act, of course. He doesn't need to.
I need to ring Sadie and make sure I'm still on to take Lucas next weekend. Thank God this all wraps soon. It's been a slog. A real slog. But Henderson is a good role, he has real depth, he's not just a pretty face, he's got something to say. And I've nailed him! Didn't think I would, saw the script and was going to say "no." But then I ran it past Viggo and he said it would be the best role this year for anyone and I would be crazy to turn it down; he said if he was twenty years younger, he'd snatch it away from me! And, given that I trust Viggo with everything, well… and now it's nearly over. And it's been hard but the rushes are amazing and this feels so right, like the journey which began seventeen, eighteen years ago in New Zealand was all leading to this moment.
Right. Okay. It's late and even I balk at filling this fucking bath again. He's not going to call while I'm in the bath. Where's the towel? Right. Check the landline, just in case…
Messages. Ah! Click.
Message 1: Billy. "Happy Birthday, Orlando, you fucking great poncing Elf!"
Message 2: Billy. "Dom would also like to say Happy Birthday, Orlando, you fucking great poncing Elf, but he's very very drunk. Just so you know he does still love you and all that crap. Okay, going now. As in, going, going… gone."
Message 3: Viggo: "Hope it's a good one. Would have been there if I could, but Henry's first is due around about now, and you know I have to be here for that. But Orli… well, I'm here, you know that? Not just today, but always."
Message 4: Elijah: (Music. Very loud. Drums. Someone howling. Volume is turned down low) "Hi! Happy, happy birthday, Orlando Bloom! You very old git person, you! Did you get my present? Do you like the new band? Miss you. You're still coming out here next month, right? Don't make me have to hunt you down and do bad things to you, man. Love you!"
13th January, 2016.
He will ring. It's still my birthday. He will ring. I will hear his voice.
Fuck! Check the mobile… yeah, it's plugged in by the bed, you cretin. Just as it was when you plugged it in before you got in the bath. Charged up. Ready. Same ruddy phone you've had for the last eight years. Will never get rid of that phone or that number. Never.
When I open the drapes I see a skyline which has become familiar over the last twelve or thirteen weeks of filming, but one which I hardly ever really notice. How odd, the way cities meld into one another until Vancouver might as well be Los Angeles or London might morph into Melbourne… just a mass of tall buildings and neon. Wellington, now that was unique.
Thirteen minutes of my birthday left. Viggo's present was delivered yesterday by special courier. It's propped against the chest of drawers. I will never quite understand his paintings but I know I like them. And I like that he painted this one for me. For years, every birthday has been fantastic for presents from Viggo and the guys. But mostly from Viggo. And his works are worth a fortune now, of course. This one is at first glance fussy and chaotic and there's more than paint on there and maybe you don't always want to know what the not paint is - but when you look closer, you see a road and the road is leading somewhere and it's getting lighter the further into the distance it goes… I think it's got a message and I will work it out. Then impress him next time we meet.
I pull on my pyjama bottoms and lie back on the bed. Somewhere in the bowels of the apartment block, I can hear music, but it's an exclusive place and the noise is subdued and subtle. A clock is ticking, too; I think it's the one in the hallway. I rely on my mobile in the bedroom, never have a clock in here. Tick tick.
I can feel it starting and I let it. It's always a clenching in the gut which works its way up and up into my throat and explodes behind my eyes. That sounds ludicrous, right, yet I can't explain it any other way. It's never really not there, of course. When I married Sadie and we had Lucas, it was there, just stamped down. I thought I could control it. I was wrong. It never goes, it just-
Oh thank fuck! I reach for the phone, fumbling and almost dropping it, yanking out the charger cable. I take a deep breath and click to receive the call. I'm giving off aromatic vapour from the hot bath and I sink into the mattress and suddenly everything is alright.
The pain is subsiding at just the first hint of his voice. I glance at the time on the phone – eleven minutes of my birthday left.
"Marton," I say and close my eyes. I knew he'd call. He always calls on my birthday. Always. He's the only one who has this number now, the only one.
"How've you been?" he asks, and his voice is so gentle and wonderful on the end of the phone, and I know I'm crying and I don't care. I turn on my side and pull the pillow right in until it's moulded to my body and there's just me and the pillow and the phone against my ear and the moonlight competing with a hint of neon streaming through the gap in the drapes.
"Fine, fine. Nearly done filming. It's gone great, the best yet, Marton. You'll love it."
"That's great, Orli. You eating properly? Not burning the candle at both ends?"
"I swear, three meals a day. All healthy! Cut right back on the booze like you asked me." I lie about the drink, grateful he can't see the glass by the bed. It's just a white lie between lovers. "And Marton – "
"Yes? Tell me, Orli."
"I know this one is going to be the best. No more sequels of sequels, no more chasing the money. This one is so fucking good, Marton. I'm really proud of this one."
"I'm proud of you, baby."
No one calls me baby. Sadie never called me that in the year and a half we were together. Lucas is only two so he just calls me dada and it’s the greatest sound in the world. But baby? Only Marton can call me that and not have me reaching for a bucket.
"I'm proud of you, too. So proud. How are you? Tell me how you are, please." I am so eager, so twenty-three again, it's ridiculous!
"Have you heard from Viggo today? Did he send you a present?" he asks, and I find myself moving my hand between my legs and squeezing. It's just a very slow, gentle wank and I don't care if I come or not. I smile into the pillow and into his voice.
"Yeah, I did. And yeah, he did. A painting. I swear, I have more of his art than anyone save Henry. I told you Viggo's going to be a grandfather any day now? Did I tell you that? He's such a great dad and he'll be a fantastic granddad."
"That's wonderful, Orli. Viggo's a good man." I can see him as if he's here with me in this bedroom in this city I have called home for the last three months. He is standing framed in the doorway, so tall, so solid and beautiful.
"I love you very much, you know that, yes?" he asks, and I see him now in the shadows, the phone in his hand. He's wearing the shirt I bought him one Christmas and the snake buckle belt we picked out in Hawaii.
"God yes. I know you do. I want to be with you. Why can't I be with you? Why does it have to be this way?" I ask, plead. He sighs down the phone and I regret the whining tone. He hates this as much as I do.
"It won't always be like this, Orli. I swear. But for now, promise me you'll look after yourself. You're so beautiful, baby. And there is so much more to you than you realise. You never give yourself credit for your accomplishments."
"I'm a face, Marton. I know that. Dom and Elijah and Billy and Viggo… all of them could act me off any screen and any stage…"
"Stop that. Only you think that. They don't. I've seen how you've worked to prove yourself, the lessons. You did the indie films, worked with directors willing to take chances…"
"Yeah! Right. They bombed! So it was back to "Pirates of the Caribbean Part Seven" but Johnny quit after the second and Keira after the third. Only I couldn't say no. And then Sadie came along and then Lucas… I just wanted to make sure my son never wanted for anything."
"So you've made a few turkeys. So has Elijah, so have all of them, Orlando. But you were never bad in any of them. You always lit up the screen."
"Casanova was bad, Marton. But that's the one they remember now, the girls at the gate – girls? Women, they're women. The girls all scream for Kurt Klyne, I just get their mothers now…" I can hear him chuckling softly at the other end of the line at that and I begin to smile, too. Well, some of the mothers are fucking gorgeous.
"You like him, yes? This Kurt?" he asks, and there's no hint of jealousy or anger. I turn the question over in my head for a few moments before answering. But my hand between my legs has speeded up a little.
"No. Well, maybe. He's so young and flawless. And he's not a bad kid. He'd let me fuck him, no doubt. But it's you I love, Marton, not him."
"But he's beautiful, Orli. He's young and beautiful and you want him, yes? Then take him. Enjoy him, touch him, make love to him."
I come hearing Marton's deep voice and remembering his heavy, toned body as it wrapped itself around mine; and I come seeing Kurt's young face and I don't know whether I should be ashamed or not.
"When can I be with you, Marton? It's wonderful to hear your voice but I need to be with you. I can't live like this," I say and I don't want to look at the clock on the phone but I know it must be almost midnight. And the end of my thirty-ninth birthday. Maybe if I try hard enough, I can make time stop…
"Then don't live like this, Orli. Let it go. Be with Kurt or whoever makes you happy. Be the best father you can be and the best lover you can be. You've become a really great actor, Orlando. You just need to believe in yourself."
"You make me happy! You, Marton."
"And you made me happy, Orlando. The happiest years of my life were the ones I had with you. But they're over, baby. For me. But life goes on for you. Take it and make it yours. Do it for me."
I'm clutching the phone now because I know he's going. I don't need to look at the clock to know it's midnight. As the first minute of 14th January 2016 ends, I am alone again.
I lie for a while, the phone still in my hand. There are messages coming in from around the world, from good friends anxious to know that I'm fine on this, my thirty-ninth birthday, the 13th of January in whichever time zone they are in. I have such good friends. And they always make sure I hear their voices on this day. But for me, in my zone, it's over.
My life is over. It ended on my thirty-third birthday. It's just that technically I didn't die. There have been so many times I thought I should put that little anomaly right, set the record straight, engineer the kind of freak accident which nature, sadly, manages so easily. Let go.
But then I throw myself into work and into the next affair. And now I have Lucas and with him a duty to go on. So I will.
And next year, 13th January 2017, I will turn forty and I will wait for a phone call.
Because Marton always calls me on my birthday.