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For marius2045: Serva Me, Servabo Te

For: marius2045
Title: Serva Me, Servabo Te
Author: Brenda (azewewish)
Pairing: Karl Urban/Orlando Bloom (Sean Bean/Viggo Mortensen)
Rating: NC-17
Summary: What Karl and Orlando have isn't healthy, but it's better than nothing.
Notes: Written for marius2054, who wanted any combination of Orlando/Karl/Viggo/Sean and angst. I hope this meets your requirements. *g* Thanks to idiosyncratic for the original idea and inspiration, and to technosage for the beta and words of advice.

Disclaimer: This story is a work of fiction, which means that while the characters depicted are based on public personas of real celebrities, the events described in the story never happened. This story in no way claims to represent the truth about the people mentioned within or the way they would behave.



As far as bad days went, this had to rank right up there with the worst. And the day had barely begun.

But then, it wasn't every single day that your lover announced over breakfast that it was over and he was moving out that day. Oh, and, by the way, he was also in love with someone else, but it was nothing personal, nothing you did, mind, just something that had happened, and he hoped you'd understand in time.

Like that was supposed to somehow make it all better.

Karl waited until he heard the sound of the car engine starting before he felt he was strong enough to stand. The dishes were still on the table - Viggo's plate still right there in its customary spot - but Karl made no move to touch it. He didn't think he could touch anything of Viggo's right now. Instead, he made his way to the stove to put the kettle on.

He didn't really want tea, or anything to drink at all, really, but at least it gave him something to do.

"Fucking hell," he breathed, then placed a hand over his chest. The numb calm that had gotten him through the disastrous breakfast and Viggo packing his things had cracked wide open, leaving only a sharp, soul-deep pain.

Breathe in, breathe out. Focus on that. Don't focus on memory after memory tumbling forth, each one twisting him in knots, each one now tainted with the knowledge that, for the past two months, Viggo had been with someone else, kissing someone else. Falling in love with someone else. Two months...long before Karl had ever even suspected that Viggo was no longer his, something had been lying beneath the surface of their life together, waiting to rip his world apart. And he'd never even seen it coming.


I'm sorry, Karl, I am, but...I love Sean. And he loves me. You and I...it was good, but it wasn't... I'm sorry.


The loud knock interrupted Karl's thoughts, ricocheted through the room, the house. Screw whoever was at the door; he was absolutely not in the mood for company, not even his own. It wasn't Viggo telling him this was some sort of insane, sick joke and it wasn't yesterday before his life had been shattered. So he really didn't care.

The knock became a loud, continuous banging. Muttering under his breath, Karl stalked through the living room, snatched open the front door.

He stared at the last person he'd expected to see, and yet, somehow, he wasn't surprised at all to see Orlando on the steps. Misery indeed loved company, and he'd almost forgotten in his own private pity party that there was one other person - and not just any person, but one of his best friends - who would understand exactly what it was he was going through.

"Can I come in?" Orlando asked, normally melodious voice raw, splintered soul showing in his hollowed eyes. His hoodie looked far too big for him, as did the baggy jeans that swallowed his legs. He looked like total hell. For a brief moment, all Karl wanted to do was pull Orlando into his arms, assure him everything was alright.

Nothing was going to be alright.

Karl simply held the door open. Orlando stepped in, shuffled his feet, peered at Karl through absurdly long lashes. The look spoke volumes, but then, they'd never really needed words to know what the other was thinking.

"C'mon," Karl said after a moment, then walked with Orlando into the kitchen. It could have been any other day, any other of the countless times Orlando had dropped by for a drink, for company, just to hang out, watch the telly, to talk Karl into going surfing, or just for dinner.

Could have been any other day, except this was emphatically not like any other day.

"Tea?" Karl asked, heading for the kettle.

Orlando nodded, the movement jerky. Long, normally graceful fingers drummed on the scratched surface of the table as he sat down, eyes darting at everything and nothing. Orlando was normally full of nervous energy - it was one of the things Karl loved most about him - but the energy was bouncy, effervescent. This twitchy, muted stranger wasn't anyone Karl knew at all. Wasn't anyone Karl wanted to know. But then, he supposed he wasn't himself, either.

"I left. I couldn't...couldn't watch him...pack." Orlando's voice trembled on the last word.

Karl gripped the edge of the stove. So much pain, and he didn't know how to stop it. Didn't know how to help Orlando or himself. "You can stay here as long as you need to, you know that," he offered finally. "I reckon Vig" - and when would saying his name stop hurting - "is probably on his way to your place to...to get Sean."

"Yeah, I guess." Orlando sighed. "You got any whiskey left from the other night to put in that tea?"

"I should." Karl shrugged, found the strength to face Orlando. Normally laughing, lively brown eyes were lifeless, dull. A normally smiling mouth was thin, flat. Karl wondered if he looked that bad, and figured he probably looked worse. He felt the urge to pull Orlando into his arms again, offer comfort, offer solace, and suppressed it. Comfort wasn't going to do either of them any good right now and it sure as fuck wasn't going to set anything to rights.

He opened the cabinet over the sink, but didn't see the whiskey bottle. However, he did come up with a mostly full bottle of port - a birthday gift from Orlando. Seemed only fitting to share it here.

He set it on the table. "Tea'll be ready in a minute. Unless you'd rather just skip it."

"Reading my mind like always," Orlando smiled. It was painful to watch, but Karl forced one of his own. He never could resist Orlando's smile, no matter what prompted it.

"Yeah, well." Karl turned off the stove, got two clean glasses, and set them on the table next to the bottle. Then he forced himself to clear the breakfast dishes. It helped that Orlando was there, watching him, his presence somehow comforting, even though they weren't making jokes or taking the piss or even just chattering on about nothing the way they normally did. Karl didn't need chatter anyway.

Once everything was in the sink, he turned back around. "So...you, um, want anything to eat...?"

Orlando grabbed Karl's wrist before he could move away again. The simple touch almost destroyed what was left of him. "Please. Just...sit."

Sit. That was the last thing Karl wanted to do. He wanted to move, wanted to pace, wanted to do something, anything. But he sat across from Orlando, stared into his own pain reflected back at him.
Unsteady hands opened the bottle, spilled some of the port as Orlando poured them each a generous glass. Orlando's smile was self-deprecating as he held his glass up. "To making it through today."

A far cry from their usual lighthearted toasts to everything and nothing. But it would do. "Yeah." Their glasses touched together, clinking softly, and Karl watched as Orlando took a healthy swallow. "And to making it through tomorrow," he added, and picked up his glass. Fuck. He swallowed half the contents in one long pull, the burn smooth.

Orlando drained his glass, then set it down in a silent invitation for Karl to pour the second glass. "You know, this would be so much easier to take if either of them even acted like what they're doing to us is wrong," he said, his tone conversational, leaning back in his chair. "But there's...no regret. No guilt. No fucking guilt at all. There should be guilt," he added, quietly.

"What should be and what is are two entirely different things," Karl murmured, lifting the bottle to pour another generous amount in Orlando's glass, topping off his own at the same time. Just two friends sharing a bottle, like it was someone else's life, someone else's pain. "They've justified it to themselves. Nothing to do about it."

"They're in love." The bitterness in Orlando's voice matched the bitterness Karl's soul. He slid his glass back towards Karl. "Another."

They downed that one in silence. And the one after that. The alcohol began its insidious path through Karl's bloodstream, made his head swim when he opened his eyes. He saw Orlando's face in a gloriously bleary close-up before Orlando's lips were on his, sharper than the alcohol. And just as deadly.

The dark thrill of the kiss - of Orlando, who he never, despite all of the flirting around and physicality of their friendship, thought of like that (and not just because of Viggo, either) - was terrifying, intoxicating. Wrong in so many ways, but right in the only one that mattered.

Finally, he wasn't alone.

"This...this isn't...healthy," Orlando murmured when he lifted his head. He drained his glass again, small droplets of alcohol clinging to his upper lip.

"Fuck healthy," Karl heard himself say seconds before his tongue was flickering across Orlando's lips, capturing the taste. Then Orlando's mouth was opening, tongue sliding out to duel with Karl's, sending another dark thrill zinging through his body. No, this wasn't healthy - they were both hurting too much for this to end well, this was one of his best friends, a person he loved like a brother. But it was here and now and good enough.

Warm, soft, so very soft...and not the lips he was used to, not the taste he was used to. Yeah, he'd laughing placed his lips against Orlando's before, shared kisses, but it had never been like this. Orlando was certainly an expert, knew how to respond, how to coax and persuade. And Karl wanted so badly to forget, to sink into warmth, to throw away memory, thought, anger, fear, and take.

Orlando's tongue slid over his, slick and enticing. Karl lifted his hand, caught on the bristles of Orlando's mohawk, anchoring himself so he could deepen the kiss. Tongues dueled, teeth clashed, lips molded and conformed to the other.

Dark, lush, forbidden, the kiss was everything Karl had never even known he'd wanted...and its very wrongness, the very fact that this wasn't Viggo, these weren't his lips, weren't his hands tangling in Karl's hair, gave Karl strength, made him bold, made him want. So long, it had been so long since he'd even thought about another person's skin, scent, texture, taste. He wanted to erase the past, erase himself. And Orlando was just the person to help him.

Maybe they could help each other forget.

Karl pushed his chair back, stood, dragging Orlando up with him. Didn't let go of the lips on his, the tongue twining with his, the hands still in his hair. Stepped closer, into a lean chest so different from Viggo's broad one, and the arms around him that had hugged him, held him a thousand times, were familiar, yet different. Karl wanted more.

He pinned Orlando against the counter, pressing into him, holding him in place, rubbing against him as his hands slid up Orlando's back.

"We...fuck, we...shouldn't..." Orlando gasped, pulling back just enough to rasp the words against Karl's lips, fingers still tangled tight in Karl's hair.

"Yes." Karl stared at Orlando, stared into those beautiful eyes, now alight with passion and lust. He didn't see any pain, and it was enough. It was more than enough. "We should. Or you wouldn't have started it."

And, with that, he dove straight back in that addictive mouth, pressed right back against that hard, leanly muscled chest. And Orlando met him, raw emotion unleashed in his kiss as their tongues fought for dominance, took, then gave back.

Orlando growled, yanked on Karl's hair, the movement sharp, bringing tears. More. Karl tore at Orlando's hoodie, ripping it off in one motion. He wanted naked flesh under his fingers, wanted Orlando's naked flesh under his fingers. No, it wasn't healthy, this wasn't them. But Karl didn't care. He removed Orlando's thin t-shirt and licked along the smooth plane of bared shoulders. Moved his mouth back up to Orlando's neck, nipped his throat with rough teeth, unzipped and shoved Orlando's jeans down with impatient hands.

"Fuck..." Orlando's voice, low and guttural in a way that Karl had never heard before, was loud in Karl's ear, teeth sharp as they bit the lobe. With a quiet ripping sound, Karl's own shirt became a casualty. Orlando's hands were warm and firm as he unbuckled Karl's belt, unzipped his jeans, and slid under boxers to the firm flesh beneath.

"I want to erase him," Orlando murmured, biting on Karl's jaw. "Completely."

Karl arched into the warm fingers enclosing him, lips moving over Orlando's cheek, rasping across a thin line of stubble. "Then do it." Offered himself up to whatever Orlando wanted from him, to whatever comfort he could provide.

They stumbled together, lips locked, hands pulling, shoving off the rest of bothersome clothing. Karl bit hard on Orlando's lower lip, and Orlando retaliated by shoving him into a nearby wall so hard that Karl's vision swam.

"Yesss..." Karl hissed between his teeth, breath shuddering to a stop when Orlando's hand closed over his cock, then dragged up, brutal and fast.

God, yes. This was exactly what he wanted. Hard, rough and bruising. He wanted everything Orlando could dish out, and more. He wanted to forget, wanted his body to forget paint-callused hands that had tangled with his just last night, wanted to forget the soft whisper of Viggo's voice in his ear, wanted to forget everything that wasn't here and now.

Orlando lowered his head, teeth closing on Karl's shoulder. "Faster," Karl groaned, fingers closing around Orlando's cock, showing him exactly what he wanted.

Orlando made a ragged noise, lips moving against Karl's neck as Karl pushed his hips forward, asking for more. Orlando obeyed the demand, twisting and squeezing, thumb flicking over the head of Karl's cock in a way that had Karl seeing stars. He sped his own hand up, welcomed the heavy weight against his palm.

His strangled gasp was lost in Orlando's kiss as he came, rode wave after black wave of pleasure.

A strong arm circled his waist, held him up through the aftershocks. Then Karl found himself supporting Orlando as he stiffened, then groaned, coming in Karl's hand in a hot, thick rush. "Jesus..." Orlando choked out a short moment later.

"No." Karl forced himself to focus, to look into Orlando's passion-filled eyes. So fucking debauched and beautiful and everything that Karl needed right now. "Just you and me." Just the two of them, here for each other, and so what if no one else understood this. He didn't care what anyone else thought, didn't care about anything outside this room, outside this tiny bubble of need and want.

He sank to his knees, licked the come from Orlando's hand, using his own sticky slick fingers to curl around Orlando's cock as he sucked the head past his open lips, filled his mouth with the bitter-almond taste of someone else. Orlando's hands thudded against the wall over Karl's head, supporting his body as his head fell forward. Karl glanced up, saw those big, beautiful eyes on him, watched as Orlando's tongue slid out to moisten full lips. Cold linoleum hard under his knees, Orlando's cock hard in his mouth - it wasn't ideal, by any means, but Karl wasn't going to argue. He pushed his head forward, took all of Orlando down his throat, choking, gasping his pleasure. Gagged on the unfamiliar length and width, moved in messy, short strokes as he fucked Orlando's cock, tears forming in the crease of his eyes.

Sharp pain exploded behind Karl's eyes when Orlando jerked on his hair, slammed forward. Yes, that was it, that was it right there. He suffocated around Orlando's cock, throat numb with the force of Orlando's thrusts. He knew he'd be hoarse the next day, knew he wouldn't care. Another hard jerk on his hair had him whimpering just as Orlando's hips snapped forward, so deep that Karl wasn't sure he could continue breathing. But he did. Breathed and swallowed as Orlando emptied himself, body trembling, shaking, held up by just his hand braced against the wall.

"Karl..." Orlando breathed, fingers loosening just a little in Karl's hair, eyes opening, trying to focus as he stared down.

He shook his head, swallowed, throat hurting, the sting as sharp as the acidic, foreign taste of Orlando's come. No...he wasn't ready to talk yet. Wasn't sure why Orlando would be. Instead, he pulled Orlando down to the floor, pushed his tongue past Orlando's teeth, shared the sweet decay, the corrupt taste, tried to let Orlando know that this was exactly what he wanted, that they were exactly where they needed to be right now. If they couldn't use each other to forget, then what in God's name was the point?

Orlando's tongue met his, tangling and twisting, sliding into his mouth and taking. And Karl gave, and took, both of them biting and clawing at each other, slipping until Karl was flat on his back on the floor, Orlando's body covering him, grinding into him.

"Take me." Karl forced the whisper past the lump in his throat. He couldn't remember the last time he'd wanted anything this much.

"Need..." Orlando's mouth moved down Karl's throat, sucking and biting, as his hand reached for, opened a nearby cabinet door. Karl caught a glimpse of the small bottle of olive oil Viggo used to use for his famous marinara sauce, and the irony was enough to make him smile. Then two fingers were pushing inside him, corkscrewing, stretching, and irony was forgotten. Orlando's teeth closed over his collarbone hard enough to leave a mark, and Karl wanted the brand, wanted the abrasion. Wanted Orlando's mark on him, wanted his marks on Orlando in return.

Karl lifted his hips, spread his legs, pulling Orlando's lithe body on top of him. Ran his hands down a supple back, felt the scars, dug in. Held on. "Now." Closed his eyes at the first tear of flesh, relished the pain as Orlando pushed inside him.

"Fuck..." Orlando groaned, sinking in until their hips were flush against each other. He paused, eyes closed, jaw clenched. No...no pausing, no adjusting. Now. Karl shifted, tightened his muscles.

"Now," he managed, then groaned again when Orlando hooked his arms under Karl's knees, pulling them up, pulling out, then slamming back inside, the thrusts unexpectedly deep, strong. Yes. Exactly like that.

Harsh grunts filled the room, the sound of flesh slapping against flesh obscenely loud. Karl welcomed the ruin, fell into perversion, clashed his teeth with Orlando's as they kissed, dug nails into Orlando's back, scraped skin, tested the strength, met each thrust with his own. This time, the orgasm blazed through him, burned the memories of another life, another man, another cock inside him, into cinders.

Orlando collapsed on top of him, shuddering, shaking, body wracked with his own orgasm, breath hot against Karl's throat. "Fuck," Orlando whispered. "Fuck...oh, God, fuck..."

"No." Karl's retort sent more pain screaming down his abused throat. Rough, trembling fingers framed Orlando's face, and Karl looked deep into Orlando's eyes, willed him to get it, the way they'd always gotten each other. "Not today," he breathed, his kiss one of infinite gentleness.

Orlando blinked, and something - something Karl didn't want to think about, didn't want to study, not right now - flashed through Orlando's eyes. "Not today," he echoed, nodding as fingertips callused from hours of archery practice traced Karl's cheekbones. "Tomorrow."

Not if Karl had anything to say about it, but he'd deal with tomorrow once it got here.

"So..." Orlando sat up, tentative fingers barely brushing Karl's cheek. The gesture was intimate, familiar, and completely them. "Um...tea, maybe? For real this time?"

"Sounds good," Karl murmured, and turned his head, brushed his lips across Orlando's fingertips.

Orlando nodded, smiled, and some of the haunted look left his eyes. "I'll..." He shook his head, just cocked his head in the direction of the hallway. "I think I need a shower."

Karl nodded. "Yeah, good idea. I'll...make you a cup of tea while you hop in."

He waited until Orlando had made his unsteady way out of the kitchen before he moved. Tried to ignore the clothes scattered all over the floor, tried to ignore the table, ignore the memory of Viggo walking out the door, the fact that he'd just let one of his best friends fuck him. Tried to ignore the train wreck his life had become literally overnight.

He drummed his fingers on the counter, eyes fastened on a bit of peeling wallpaper as he waited for the teakettle to heat up. The minutes stretched out, seemed to last several lifetimes. He didn't know if he could do this, didn't know what he was supposed to do, how he was supposed to act. Didn't know how he was going to make it through today, let alone tomorrow. Didn't know how he was going to face Orlando know that he had no answers, no magic that would make this better.

The soft whistle of the kettle caught his attention. Get your shit together. Easier said than done.

Slowly, carefully, he carried the mug back through the house, down the hall and into the bathroom. Just stood there for a moment, watching Orlando's shadow through the curtain. One foot moved, then the other...

God, Orlando was right, they shouldn't be doing this.

He reached out, pulled the curtain back. "Brought your tea," Karl murmured, smiling a little when Orlando opened his eyes.

He watched in fascination as Orlando shook his head, droplets flinging everywhere. "Thanks."

Water flowed over Orlando's body in thick rivulets as he leaned against the slick tile, steam rising, curling around him, making already impossibly beautiful features even more beautiful. He'd seen Orlando in countless states of undress, both while at set and out and about, but somehow, this was different. Karl's gaze roamed greedily over Orlando's body, shoulders, supple arms, a toned chest, the sun tattoo cresting over a lean hip, then down to the coarse hairs at Orlando's groin, half-hard cock nestled between muscled thighs, then skating over long legs. He looked nothing like Viggo. Karl couldn't help but be grateful for it.

Fingers brushed against his when Orlando grabbed the mug, sipped the hot liquid, smiled gratefully. "Join me?" he whispered, sounding very young and unsure, so much like the boy he'd been when Karl had first met him.

Karl knew the smart thing would be to go back to the kitchen, put on his clothes, wait for Orlando to finish. "Sure."

Orlando continued to lean against the tile, sipping his tea, but one hand curled around Karl's as he stepped under the spray, the touch one of comfort. "Thanks for the tea."

"Welcome," Karl mumbled, tilting his head back, letting the water wash over his face, flow into his mouth, and his fingers tightened around Orlando's, squeezing hard. Jesus...

"Don't." Soft, insistent whisper in his ear. "Focus on me."

Karl's head fell forward, eyes closed tight against the image of Sean and Viggo, together, just like this...

"They..." He stopped, swallowed hard, turned his face blindly towards Orlando's voice. "God, Orlando..." He slipped into the kiss, the warm lips on his, tasting of honey and chamomile and something indefinable, something Orlando. Not remotely like Viggo. Precisely what Karl wanted.

"Don't think," Orlando told him, voice soft, soothing, hand stroking over his back.

"Yeah." Karl could hear the catch in his voice. He didn't want to think, couldn't think. If he did, he'd shatter into even smaller pieces. He turned his body, pressed against Orlando's, felt the press of gloriously wet, naked skin against his.

"Hold on..." Orlando knelt, placed the empty mug on the tub ledge, slid back up Karl's slick body. "They don't..." Felt Orlando tremble, felt the answering tremble ripple under his skin, had his lips back on Orlando's before Orlando could finish. They didn't. Karl didn't want to know beyond that.

Orlando's tongue slipped over his, and it was all Karl could focus on, all he'd let himself focus on. Kiss slid wetly into kiss, hands roamed, moved, gentle to the point of pain. Orlando pulled Karl against him, rubbed water into his skin, tongue massaging, teasing. So good. Felt so good...different hands on his body, a different low moan skittering across his lips. Orlando curved a hand against Karl's ass, rubbing their hips, groins together. "You want me to...?"

"Please..." Karl breathed, licking at Orlando's lips, tongue tracing, hands sliding over wet skin, trailing over the tattoo, then lower. He wanted, he needed. Wanted to forget, wanted to help Orlando forget, wanted that slide into madness with Orlando by his side.

A hand curled over his cock, tongue stroking against the roof of his mouth, water hot on his back. "Fuck...yes..." he gasped, hands sliding down Orlando's back to cup his ass, squeezing, fingers teasing along the cleft. He arched into Orlando's hand, wanting more.

Orlando shifted, moved, hand gliding over Karl's cock in fast, slick movements. "Yeah..." Orlando rasped, licking the shell of Karl's ear. "Like that?" Thumb flicking across the head of his cock, long fingers coiling over him, each stroke bringing him closer to oblivion. Karl couldn't speak, could only nod. Water dripped in his eyes, down his body, streamed over him as Orlando's hand worked to bring him that blessed numbness. He groaned, then sighed, hips moving. Just a little more, a little... His fingers tightened, dug into Orlando's hips as his back arched and his body trembled, shaking as his orgasm tumbled through him, swept him under.

Long minutes passed, and Karl held onto the numbness, sank against Orlando. "Better?" Orlando asked, hands once again soothing, soft.

"Some," Karl whispered, tasted water and Orlando's skin. He lifted his head, lips touching Orlando's ear. "You want me to...?"

"Could you...just...?" The words were mumbled against Karl's shoulder.

"Yeah, of course," Karl replied, knowing exactly what Orlando wanted. He wrapped his arms around Orlando, wondered how they were all going to get through the next few hours, days, months. Orlando clung to him, fingers digging into his back as his lips moved against Orlando's bristled hair in a soft kiss.

Orlando lifted his head, looked desperate, hopeful. So vulnerable he made Karl's heart hurt. "Would you...just...I don't..."

Karl met brown eyes, smiled, tenderly stroked a wet cheek with his thumb. Still Orlando, even under all of the pain and hurt. "You...do you need me to?"

"Yeah." Orlando swallowed again, tightened his hands across Karl's back. "Yeah, I do."

Karl nodded. Simple as that. "Then I will."

"Rough, alright," Orlando whispered, voice a low purr sending sparks igniting over Karl's skin. "Can you...?"

Karl was more than happy to oblige, more than happy to return the favor, give this to Orlando. One hand spun Orlando to face the tile wall as the other reached for the conditioner on the shelf.

He watched in fascination as the conditioner squirted out of the bottle and hit Orlando's skin, trickling down the crack of his ass. Karl smiled, leaned forward to bite Orlando's shoulder, tasting water. "This what you want?" he asked, two fingers corkscrewing into Orlando.

Orlando thrust back, met Karl's every movement with one of his own. "More."

Karl replaced his fingers with his cock, slamming into Orlando with one hard, deep thrust. He groaned as muscled walls gripped him tight, drew him deeper. Another groan was dragged from him as he pulled out only to slam forward again, Orlando's muscles clenching tight around him.

Orlando only grunted, hand moving back to dig into Karl's hip, fingers scoring the skin. More bruises, more marks to add to Karl's collection. He slammed forward again, and Orlando shoved back, growled low in his throat, body demanding more. The water grew cool, then cold, neither noticing nor caring, lost in each other, in this.

"Fuck, you feel..." Orlando's words were cut short, muscles contracting around Karl's cock in sublime friction.

Karl didn't reply. His mouth was too busy tasting every damp inch of Orlando's neck and shoulders to worry about speaking. He watched in satisfaction as small, purple marks bloomed on Orlando's slick skin. With a guttural growl, he picked up the pace, slamming into Orlando over and over. His cock stroked over Orlando's prostate with each thrust, moans echoing off the tiles. His fingers clenched lean hips hard enough to hurt as he sent them both hurtling towards a blinding orgasm.

Orlando sagged against the smooth tiles, breath harsh, a staccato beat that matched the shower spray and the roaring in Karl's ears. It felt like all the blood had been sucked out of his body by a vacuum. He slumped over Orlando, licked sweat mixed with water from his neck. Tried to formulate words, but they seemed hazily out of reach.

"Feel better?" he asked when he could finally talk. Knew the answer, didn't need the shake of Orlando's head to confirm it. He wondered if either one of them would really ever feel better again.

"I might be able to nap for a little while, though." Orlando's next words were low, almost inaudible. "You think I could...stay for awhile?"

"Yeah," Karl said, pulling away. Figured the both of them could use the downtime. "Come on."

He knew Orlando knew where the guest room was, but wasn't quite ready to leave Orlando and go to the master bedroom, with sheets that were still rumpled from last night and still smelled like Viggo, like Karl, like the two of them mingled together. Laundry was the first thing on his list to do tomorrow.

"Okay." Orlando's first attempt at a smile seemed forced, but the second one seemed better. They stepped out of the shower, dried off in silence, each of them stealing small glances at the other, exchanging small smiles.

Karl snagged Orlando's hand as they walked down the hall, and stopped at the foot of the bed. "Think you'll ever sleep...you know...there again?" Orlando finally asked.

"No clue," Karl replied, subdued. He tugged Orlando close, kissed him softly. "Maybe I will...in time."

Orlando leaned into the kiss, licking his lips when they finally parted. "You don't have to sleep alone, you know," he said, fingers gentle as they trailed over Karl's cheeks.

"Neither do you." Karl captured Orlando's hand, kissed each fingertip. He questioned Orlando with his eyes, lips sliding to rest against his palm. "That is," he continued, lips barely moving against warm skin, "if you don't want to..."

"I don't." Soft lips captured his again, the kiss unexpectedly sweet. Shifted something deep inside him, cracked the ice encasing Karl's soul. "I don't want to sleep alone," Orlando repeated, breath warm against Karl's lips.

"I don't either," Karl whispered as he pushed Orlando down on the bed and followed him, bodies shifting to align as his lips found Orlando's again.

"Karl..." One of Orlando's hands cupped Karl's cheek, slid across stubble. "I want you to know..." he licked his lips, and Karl's eyes followed the movement, "...I don't...I don't regret this." His hand slid around, cupped the back of Karl's neck. "I don't."

This time, the smile was easy. "I don't either," Karl replied, rubbed his nose against Orlando's. "Still friends."

"The best." Orlando was still smiling when their lips met again, still smiling when Karl lifted his head. And it was almost the same carefree smile Orlando used to have. Before yesterday.

"I'm glad you came by," Karl said, softly, sincerely.

"There's nowhere else I'd rather be."

"So you'll...you'll stay, then?"

"Yes." Orlando nodded, eyes wide, solemn. "I'll stay."

They would pick up the pieces and move on, Karl thought, as he let Orlando tug him into another kiss. Somehow...they'd get each other through this.


***
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