A Numb3rs fanfic.
Title: A Body in Motion
Warnings: Incest. Angst.
Summary: Don’s messed up – in more ways than one.
Disclaimer: Not mine, just borrowed. And played with (and possibly permanently corrupted)
Word Count: 3,788
It’s all gone wrong and it’s all Dons fault.
The team notice that something’s up because, hey, they are FBI and they can see a thing when its right in front of their faces and he’s been snappish and Charlie’s been jumpy all day, and he overhears Terry mutter to David about ‘sibling issues’ and nearly laughs out loud because that is so not it.
But it’s not really funny. Because she’s right in a way, this whole thing is because of a ‘sibling issue’, because of the fact that Charlie and him are brothers. Because Charlie’s his brother for Christ’s sake; and he shouldn’t feel this way about him.
And though he knows it’s all gone wrong, Don doesn’t realise quite how badly he’s fucked things up till the end of the day when Charlie abruptly stands to leave and Don hears him tell Terry on the way out that unless something changes he wont be in tomorrow on this case, that there isn’t really that much else to do and the FBI accountants can deal with it – which is true, they’re just winding things up really, but then Charlie mutters about not being available for a while, that he’s got to work on one of his own equations – P vs NP.
And then Don knows how badly he’s handled things, because P vs NP is Charlie’s obsession, his avoidance tactic, always has been. It means he’s running away from having to deal and Don knows it. It’s what Charlie worked on when he first started teaching and was stressed; it’s what he worked on when their Mom was dying and it’s what he’s going to work on now if Don doesn’t stop him.
Work on while he doesn’t eat and doesn’t sleep, work on until he gets thin (thinner), and has dark circles under blank eyes and starts twitching slightly and babbling from lack of sleep and too much coffee. Until Don snaps him out of it; because it’s always been Don who did that.
Except this time he’s running away from Don, isn’t he? Don can see that – he knows avoidance, he knows running away. He should. It’s what made him pick the furthest away baseball team he could, it’s what made him grab the transfer to Albuquerque when it was offered, part of what nearly led him to the altar with a woman he now realises he didn’t love.
Don understands obsession as well. It’s what brought him back from baseball for so many holidays, what drove him away again to the FBI. It’s why, when Charlie’s cracked voice on the phone said “Mom’s sick, you need to come home” some tiny, hateful, unacknowledged part of him knew his willingness to leave Kim and everything else behind had nothing to do with filial love.
But he would have done nothing, nothing about it if he hadn’t worked out that Charlie was the same, felt the same.
It was the look on Charlie’s face that started Don working it out. When they were in the hospital and Don exclaimed without thinking
“But you can never keep secrets!”
And the quick look Charlie gave him before walking away was so… hurt, and angry, and ashamed and so, so weary that it made Don wonder what other secrets Charlie had been keeping from him. And how long he’d been keeping them for.
It couldn’t have been for as long as Don had been keeping his. Charlie had been sixteen that first time, Don twenty-one and he’d persuaded his boy-genius brother to take time off from his masters and do something ‘normal’ for a change on that sweltering hot June day – so they went swimming.
Charlie had seemed to be enjoying himself with everyone else and Don lost sight of him in the crowd of people that were at the outdoor pool, and then he’d spotted his brother standing alone on the side by the diving board and just knew from his stance that Charlie was gone, off in his world of numbers, calculating vectors and angles of the dives or god knows what, and Don had started to creep up on him meaning to surprise him and push him in.
Then, as he was a couple of feet away, in between one step and the next things changed. He was looking at his bratty, incredibly smart but still annoying baby brother and then Charlie cocked his head and reached up an arm to brush back his wet curls – and the sun hit the contour of him so perfectly it took away Dons breath.
His heart contracted as he suddenly saw Charlie, really saw him for the first time in years. He’d had this mental image of his brother as a gawky nerd for so long that he hadn’t noticed he’d grown up – not that much taller, true, and still slim, but that was a mans body there and there was the glint of stubble when Charlie turned his head and Don found himself unable to breath as he watched a trickle of water run down the line of his neck, cross his shoulder and track round the blade to go running down, down, down that honey-gold skinned, slim-back to the hollow dip just over the line of his swim suit to be caught with others in the small dusting of hair there, there above the swelling curve of his small, perfect ass… and the image of himself kneeling and suckling those water drops away before trailing his tongue down the crack flashed through his mind so vividly that he gasped and pinched himself to make sure he hadn’t really done it.
He hadn’t pushed Charlie in the pool, hadn’t trusted himself to touch him – and he’d been silent on the way home and quiet all through dinner and he’d gone to his room as soon as he could as Charlie was just wearing an undershirt and fucking cut-offs because of the heat and there was too much smooth skin to look at and the second the door of his room was locked behind him he was tearing his pants open and jerking himself to the most amazing god-damn orgasm of his life to thoughts of his little brother!
And afterwards, when he’d come down and caught his breath it had hit him what he’d just done – and for the first time since he was ten he’d put his face in his hands and cried.
Don had run away, ran back to the baseball and the team, but he hadn’t ran hard enough because there had been other signs, other stuff – like the waiter in that pizza joint in Boston, the one he had flirted with for three nights running and decided that he’d ask back to the hotel. And then he was at the counter watching his prospective fuck-buddy serving a customer and the boy had lifted his arm to push back his hair: his slightly too-long, curly black hair – and Don had seen how much the guy had looked like Charlie, with his small frame and his olive skin, and worse, Don had realised that the reason he had been flirting with him in the first place was because he reminded Don of his brother.
He left the shop in a rush and didn’t go back.
And he knows their mom and dad thought that the reason he sometimes avoided Charlie on his trips back home was because of left over adolescent jealousy, and he let them think that, because the truth wasn’t possible to explain. He couldn’t tell his parents that the reason he sometimes got quiet and left when Charlie’s was in the room is because he was struggling not to imagine what his little brothers face would look like when Don’s fucking him.
And Kim, poor lovely Kim – the woman he wrapped his psyche around and used to prove to himself that, see – he wasn’t this monster that the twisted, sick part of him kept trying to make him into, because here he was, engaged to a woman who made him the envy of all. And he got very good at ignoring the tiny dark voice that whispered all the ways she contrasted with Charlie, woman to his man, blonde to his dark, curvy to his slim, fiery to his vague. And he didn’t – never, ever – imagine olive, gold skin instead of cream when he touched her in bed. Never wanted curls under his hand instead of long, straight hair. No.
Then Charlie’s voice on the phone, cracking like he was still thirteen instead of near thirty, and Don had gone without a backward glance, without a thought, away from his old life. Towards his brother.
Dealing with his mother’s illness and his dad’s pain and his own pain and Charlie’s withdrawal had left little time over for any other thoughts. And when the funeral was over and things had settled down he had thought distance and time had tamed the monster slightly, that he could see his brother and be casual about it, that he could ask him about a couple of cases. And then there was the rapist case, and the Charm School Boys and suddenly Charlie was always there and Don’s problem came screeching back and the monster was there full force all the time.
So he was careful not to touch Charlie but sometimes he couldn’t help throwing an arm around his shoulder as they walked across campus. It wasn’t nearly enough contact for the monster, was like having a cup of coffee when what you wanted was crack cocaine, but it helped when the need to just grab Charlie reached white-knuckle tension level. And he never touches Charlie after a night with the dreams, when flashes of the almost-memory of warm gold skin under his lips and a smooth slim back arching under him are constantly skittering across his mind.
But the tension is unbearable, and something has to give, so after the look that Charlie gave him, after the wild, impossible idea occurred to him that the other secrets his brother carried might be like his, he decided to actually watch what Charlie did, how he reacted rather than spend his time trying not to watch Charlie, not to react himself. And when he saw how many small glances Charlie sent him, always when he thought Don wasn’t looking, he decided to test his brother with what he knew his own parameters were.
He knew he couldn’t trust himself to be near Charlie, so if he stood this close to his brother how long would the other man be able to stand it? Because if it were Don he’d have to step back in five, four, three, two… and right on cue Charlie turns away.
And would Charlie let him sling a casual arm across his shoulder anywhere? Because Don usually only let himself have physical contact outside or with a group, where it was safe, where it couldn’t go any further, but would his brother be ok with it when they were inside, alone, not even their father in the house to keep them from… and Charlie would get anxious and jittery and turn away to tidy or grab something, anything. Don knew all about needing something to occupy your hands with to stop them from doing other things.
And then there was the other night. When he’d ruined everything.
When they’d gone back to the house after leaving the office and there was wine with the dinner they shared with their father and after pop had said goodnight and gone to bed they’d stayed up and had beers and Don knew Charlie hadn’t much of a head for alcohol and he’d sat too close to him on the sofa anyway and leaned in laughing too far and stayed there too long and he’d been so caught up in these head games he’d been playing on Charlie, thinking so much about his fucking experiments and how far he could push his brother that he forgot what stakes they were playing for.
And he’d let Charlie’s arm come up and felt his hand on the back of his neck and been pulled into the kiss and his only thought was of pleasure and how good this was, how good Charlie tasted and how He. Had. Been. Right. He’d been right! and this was, this was…
This was his brother.
The realisation had hit him like a .44 slug and he had gasped and torn himself away because yes, he wanted this – wanted it so much it made his bones ache, and yes, he’d wanted it for years but he’d never, never thought it would actually happen and so he’d never had to think about what to do now and he didn’t know what to do now and he, he –
He panicked and ran. Again. He gabbled some sort of words, not knowing if they made sense and not being able to meet Charlie’s horrified, devastated eyes and ran out of the house with his brother’s cry of “Please, Donny, don’t… I’m sorry, I didn’t mean…” ringing in his ears.
So here they were. And after a night of no sleep and a long day of work and stress and not meeting Charlie’s eyes and always keeping space between them but still feeling his presence like a halogen buzz on his skin and still being able to feel his lips – slightly chapped and dry against his, and feeling the heartsick lump in his throat get higher and higher until it mixed with the sour taste of too much coffee in his mouth and felt like it was going to choke him… After all that Charlie was going home and Don was going to loose him to the numbers because he didn’t think he’d be able to pull him out of it this time.
And his coat was in his hand without knowing it and he was after Charlie without saying goodbye to Terry and David, barely seeing their surprised looks out of the corner of his eye, and before the elevator closed in Charlie’s drawn face Don had slid inside and barked at him
“You’re coming back to the apartment with me. We need to talk”
Charlie stuttered “Don… I – “ but he cut him off with a look and when they reached the ground he clamped his hand on his brother’s elbow, dragged him to the SUV and nearly forced him inside.
Charlie tried again when Don got into the drivers seat
“Look, Don, I’m sorry. I didn’t mean – “
But Don just said through clenched teeth
“Be quiet till we get to the apartment. We talk there”
And so Charlie shut up and Don concentrated on driving and on not remembering how his brothers lips had tasted and not on thinking about how the faint chalk smell that was an essential part of him got inside your mouth and somehow dried it out until the only thing you could think of that would get your juices flowing again was more of Charlie.
They’re both silent throughout the rest of the drive, and in the elevator ride up to Don’s floor and Don hasn’t grabbed Charlie’s arm again but Charlie’s still acting like a prisoner, all stiff and silent, and then they’re through the door of Don’s apartment and he’s thrust Charlie down on the sofa and he’s pacing, he’s pacing and he looks at his brother and suddenly –
Don sees how still Charlie is. How hunched. How he’s not meeting Don’s eyes and how the feeling emanating from him is –
He’s made his little brother afraid of him.
And the shame of that, and of what he’s done, what he’s become, and the tension of the past day, of the past weeks, Christ! of the past years hits Don all at once and in two strides he’s over in front of Charlie and he’s hit the floor before he knows his knees have buckled and he’s grabbed Charlie’s legs with both hands and when his brother’s head shies up he’s looking into those huge, brown eyes with their wet lashes and he’s blurting out
“It’s not you! Oh Christ – Jesus Christ Charlie, it’s not you! It was all my fault. I… it’s just that I was trying to see if you felt the same and I kept pushing you, and I knew that if it was me I’d want… and I wanted to see what you’d do, what you’d want and I, I, it’s just that I’ve felt like this for so long and I just couldn’t stand – “
He sees the understanding in his brother’s eyes as he talks, sees that brilliant brain making the connections and then Charlie’s eyes spark and his hands come up to Don’s face and he stops his mouth with a kiss.
Oh, dear god. This is heaven. And this is hell. And if he’s damned for all eternity he doesn’t care because this is what he’s wanted for sixteen years, this is his brother, this is Charlie, and he knows what Don is, what he wants, he sees the monster and doesn’t care and he –
He wants as well.
Charlie is kissing him, and he’s kissing back, and their tongues are tangling together and there’s that oh, so wonderful taste of chalk and it doesn’t dry his mouth out now because it’s the two of them together and two together cancels the result out and he must remember to ask Charlie about that…
Panting now, tearing his mouth off Charlie’s and holding him as close as he can and half panting, half sobbing into his neck.
Charlie smoothes his hair, and kisses his neck and then he pulls Don’s head back and just say’s
Don’s floating now. Some part of him’s still there to get up off the floor and be pulled along by Charlie towards the bedroom, but most of him is off somewhere – towards the ceiling he thinks – observing all of this and wondering what he did in a past life to deserve this. And whether it was good or bad.
But then he’s being pushed backwards onto the mattress and Charlie’s there on top of him and suddenly his brother pauses, freezes, and Don sees the uncertainty creep back into those eyes and he can’t just observe anymore. ‘The act of observing changes that which is being observed’ – Charlie’s told him that before. And now Don has to act.
He strokes Charlie’s neck, down the pulse point and over the collar bones to the top button of the shirt, and as his brother stay’s still above him he slowly unbuttons the shirt all the way down.
Beautiful, smooth flesh. Wiry muscle over bone and that too-sharp dip past the ribs to the stomach. Thin smattering of hair across the chest that somehow, miraculously thickens down to the navel in a tempting trail beyond the top of the jeans. Don smoothes both hands across over the nipples and down till his spread fingers are just ghosting inside the denim, then he stops and meets his brother’s eyes.
“Are you sure, Charlie? I’ll stop if you want”
Charlie meets his eyes and Don can see the trust that he’s always had in his older brother reflected there, and Charlie say’s
“I don’t want to stop. I never want to stop”
And their lips crash together again and then its heat and breathless sound and touch, touching everywhere and their clothes are gone, shucked off in the chaos theory of their coming together and then its that one, first, perfect moment when bare skin and hard cocks meet and they’re just rutting. Clutching each other and rolling over and their mouths are everywhere and Don’s on top of Charlie thrusting against him when Charlie’s teeth bite down on his shoulder and it’s like wrestling when they were kids, when Don was the bigger one, the older brother and then Don knows, he can see what this needs, what they need if there’s ever going to be a ‘them’ like this again and he rolls them over so that Charlie is on top and grasps his brothers face in his hands and pants out
“I want you inside me”
Charlie stills again, and he slowly meets Don’s eyes and now its his turn to ask
“Are you sure Don?”
But Don has already read the answer in the heat that’s in Charlie’s eyes and in the jump that his cock gave when he said it, and he’s scrambling in the bed-side drawer for the lube and slapping it into Charlie’s hand and pulling his brother close and saying
“Please, please Charlie. I want you to fuck me, I want you inside of me. You’ve already been inside of me for so long. Please, Charlie, please”
And Charlie doesn’t say anything more and he runs trembling hands down Don’s torso as he slides down between his legs and Don gasps and rears up as his brother places a wet, open-mouthed kiss on the head of his cock before the first slick finger slides inside him. And then its two fingers, and three. Scissoring inside him and reaching to brush that spot that makes starry specks explode behind Don’s eyes. And he looks down to see that dark curly head dip as a kiss brushes his hip bone and Charlie’s obviously done this before and Don has one tiny breath to feel jealousy spark inside him before his brother’s crawling back up his body and then all he can see is Charlie’s dark eyes looking wild and feral, all he can feel is the blunt head of his brother’s cock as it breaches his body and slides in – far, far inside him, all he can hear is Charlie’s breathless whisper of
“Don. Oh, Donnie – so good, feels so… good”
Then sight and feeling and sound all mix together and coalesce, and the Charlie whose been inside him for so long and the Charlie whose inside, outside, all around him mix and join and fill him, saturate him with pleasure until he just has to
The sweat is drying on them now, and they’re still wrapped around each other – holding on as they drift into sleep, when Charlie say’s, clearly and fervently
“I’m not letting you go Don”
And Don knows what he means, and he strokes his brother's shoulder for a moment before he answers. His voice is low and raspy, like he’s been shouting for a long time
“I’ve been trying to avoid this since you were sixteen Charlie. And I don’t want to run anymore”