Author: Juxian Tang
Title: Cutting Edge
Pairing: Bush/other, Bush/Horatio UST
Summary: New Year night and no one wants to be alone. So, Bush finds comfort where he can.
Show: Horatio Hornblower
Disclaimer: Horatio Hornblower belongs to C.S. Forester; the show belongs to A&E Entertainment
Feedback address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Advertisement: Part of the Slash Advent Calendar of 2004
The illustration is made by Black Hound
There, behind the wall, was a female cracked voice purring a song in a quiet, mournful way - through the clinking of mugs colliding in toasts and drunken laughter. And here, for him, there was only darkness and metallic hot taste in his mouth - he had bitten his lip through not to make a sound when the man entered him. Pressing his forehead to the wall, Bush gave in to the rough, callused fingers gripping his hips, pulling him closer, deeper onto the thrusting cock.
The door to the inn was a thin line of light on the left of him - and on the right there was a door to the back yard, cold air coming through it. A tiny dune of snow was drifted on the threshold, white. They had had white Christmas and now it was a white New Year. He remembered how much it seemed to matter when he was a child. It seemed to be one more joy out of many - running out to the new, absolutely untouched layer of snow, playing with it - his sisters always shoved handfuls of it behind his collar.
Bush smiled thinking about it, even now - a strange distraction, while his body was yanked, handled like a thing, shoved down to meet the thrusts. But he was always good at distractions, at being able to create illusions - illusions that made life seem bearable for a while.
"So clean." The man was talking, non-stop - an endless stream of words pouring from his mouth as his pelvis worked, slamming wildly. "A real gentleman, ain't you? Do you like it?"
He made a meaningless half-snort in reply. A confirmation from him was not necessary. It was not the point whether he liked it.
And there was no denial that he did.
He was hard - despite brutality of copulation, despite shame, even despite pain: he'd got out of habit, hadn't been taken for a while and the man did nothing to make it easier. But pain was good - Bush wanted it like that, he'd chosen this man exactly because it didn't look like he would be kind.
He hoped it would be easier this way. This way he wouldn't be tempted to confuse, to imagine for a moment...
Dark shining eyes that used to be so warm - now ruthless, pushing him away almost like with physical force, warning: 'Don't come any closer'. As if he were an enemy. Then Bush wanted to scream - I'm not your enemy, I want to be your friend. But he knew he couldn't say that - Horatio wouldn't listen. Horatio, his beautiful Captain. His wounding blade. His poison.
Thinking of him hurt - much more than the cock sliding in and out of him.
"Come on, cry for me. Let me 'ear your voice, beg me now."
He didn't answer; the man might have had his own way to trigger the arousal but Bush didn't have to play his game. He wanted it as it was, painful, impersonal and humiliating, in the corridor of a dirty inn, pressed to the cold wall - with a stranger. And he wanted to feel torn, wanted every thrust to feel like a red-hot rod was pushed in his rectum.
He wanted his release and punishment both.
He did make a sound at a particularly hard thrust, with a twist, and the man laughed, and Bush felt his own mouth curve in a smile. He wished the pain could change something. Could batter the wrong thoughts out of him. But there was no hope - at least not when he couldn't stop thinking.
He thought about Horatio with his family this night - Horatio smiling at his wife with his charming, achingly warm smile - over the glass of wine - and catching her infatuated, adoring gaze. This night they would spend in their bed, together, the heat of their bodies mingling.
He pressed his palms to the wall. Stop thinking. Stop tormenting yourself.
It was madness. But what else could he do - except for what he was doing?
"I like blue eyes, d'you 'ear me? I like fucking you, you bastard, did anyone fuck you like me?"
And the coarse fingers played with his queue, pulling it, almost rudely, yanking - but the dirty words falling from the man's lips were lulling. He liked it. He enjoyed it. He needed it.
Horatio... I'm sorry.
There had been time when Bush tried to deceive himself. When he hoped he could be normal, could give what his sisters expected from him - a family, children. The war was going to be over one day - then it would've been possible. But he knew he would never do it. He was a lost cause.
A sodomite. Bush wanted to stop doing it - stop defiling Horatio with his thoughts, at least at this moment, when someone whose name he didn't even know - someone whose gaze he'd caught fifteen minutes ago in the crowded, celebrating inn - was slamming into him violently, shoving him against the wall, whispering obscenities to him.
"I'll make you tell me how much you like it, I'll make you..."
He thought about the Renown. How bright and happy and in peace with himself Horatio had been there. It seemed to Bush then that something was possible, when he met Horatio's gaze, so open... almost ready to answer him.
But nothing ever happened. Did he miss his chance, in his unwillingness to despoil someone who was so pure as Horatio Hornblower? Or did Bush never even have a chance?
It was the New Year night - the night when people were making plans and giving promises. But he knew everything that could have been was the past.
And so all he had was the heavy body pressing him against the wall, and heavy breath hot over his ear. And a soft clicking sound of a sling blade opened, cold metal at his throat.
Maybe that's how it's meant to end, Bush thought - and the fear in this knowledge was much more ephemeral than the hot joy suddenly washing over him. It would be over and he would be free, of his shame, of his perversion, of the haunting thoughts. Maybe it was what he always hoped for.
But the thrusts didn't stop, and his body was answering - to being taken, being filled - and he shivered, his teeth chattering, as the strongest surge of climax came over him. He pressed back, towards the entering cock, accepting it deeper - and came. And the man behind him groaned and rocked, also coming.
The blade was still against his skin, not even breaking it.
And Bush still liked feeling it. Maybe more than anything else this night.
"You fool," the man whispered against his ear, his voice harsh with exhaustion. "So this is what you wanted? You crazy son of bitch..."
And very slightly, aware of the sharp blade touching him, Bush nodded.
Yes, he was crazy. He was even worse than one could imagine. And he would live with the memory of this feeling - metal against his throat - and with blue bruises on his hips - for a long time, until it became unbearable again and he went looking for another man who would be able to quench his need.
But till then - he would be everything his Captain wanted him to be - everything Horatio needed.
"What is your name?" the man asked, his voice still husky, his body leaning heavily over Bush's. His fingers played with the untied ribbon of his queue.
Bush could have lied, it was easy - no one would know. But suddenly he thought of the pleasure than surged through him when he heard Horatio say his Christian name - which happened more and more seldom recently - and it a strange way it made him answer.
He didn't ask the man's name - and the man spoke up again.
"What ship are you from?"
He didn't say anything at that and the man chuckled - likely he didn't expect an answer. There had been nothing between them but a crime, a sin - something that was dangerous and corrupt and could destroy them both.
"See you... William."
And there was pain of the cock leaving his body - and cold when the man moved away. Even with this anonymous body against his it had been warmer than now, when Bush was alone.
He felt wide open and sticky - and dressed quickly, wincing in shame. And yet he knew he'd think of this moment many times, in his loneliness, think of the blade against his throat.
He knew what expected him in future - this year, 1804, would be just like the previous one. He would *never* be with Horatio. Sometimes it was difficult to live with this thought. All he would have would be an inn, and an exchange of glances, and a short, dangerous tryst somewhere at the back door. Until a bullet of a Frog or the sea cut his life short.
* * *
"I hope you had a good time last night, Mr. Bush."
"Yes, sir, thank you. And you?"
"I... It seems I anticipate certain changes in my family, William. Mrs. Hornblower... I suppose I'm going to be a father."
"Congratulations, sir. It is... it is a good news."