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Male Bonding by dee
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Author's Notes:
Zarah loves pretty boy action, both on and off the field. This one's entirely for her.
Final Score:
Manchester United - 4 - Cole (6), Beckham (27), Giggs (43), Solsjkaer (87)
Southampton - 1 - Le Tissier (55)



"I'm too tired to go surfing this weekend, Lij," Dom compained, collapsing into one of Orli's armchairs and swinging his feet up onto the coffee table. Dislodged, a pile of magazines slid off the other side into a creased tangle of pages on the floor.

"Oi." Apart from the single syllable, Orlando didn't move from where we was sprawled across the other armchair, staring straight up.

"Oh, you are awake." Sean sounded surprised. "I thought you'd completely zoned out. Or were communicating with the ceiling telepathically, or something."

"I'm contemplating," Orli stated, still not moving. "There's a difference."

"Orli, you don't contemplate," Dom told him. "You don't have the patience for it."

"Fuck you, Monaghan. If I wasn't so zoned out, I'd come over there and kick your arse."

Ignored, Elijah came around the couch. "Come on, guys," he wheedled, sliding Dom's feet off the table so he could sit in the vacated space.

"Don't start," Dom said warningly, but let his feet fall to the floor. "And don't flash those big blue eyes at me, Elwood. For future reference: the 'I'm so sweet and innocent' act works better on someone who hasn't seen you down half a bottle of bourbon and do the Time Warp, complete with actions."

Elijah stopped pouting and gave him the finger. Dom cheerfully returned the gesture, before leaning back and closing his eyes. "Guys, come on," Elijah tried again. "It's a rare weekend off. The least we could do is use it."

"Sod off, sonny," Billy chimed in from his position on the couch. "Some of us have been fighting the forces of darkness all week, not larking about Mordor looking fragile."

"Fine!" Elijah threw his hands up in the air. "I still don't see why we can't just go to the beach, though. Sean and I can surf, and you lazy bastards can relax all you like." Dom cracked open one eye, and Elijah grinned encouragingly. "Nice warm beach. The gentle sound of the waves."

"And the amusing spectacle of Lij wiping out every second wave," Sean chipped in, and ducked as Elijah threw a cushion at him.

Billy chuckled, and Orlando levered himself upright, using great willpower and skill. "I'll think about it," he said, and added, as Elijah bounced to his feet: "I'll think about it after I've had some coffee." He headed into the kitchen, hopeful Elijah in pursuit, and called over his shoulder: "Clean up the mess you made, Dom."

Grumbling, Dom managed to control his fall forwards so it turned into a bend, and he scrabbled after the fallen magazines, stacking them haphazardly back on the table. It was a typically Orli mish-mash. Some glossy travel magazines jumbled up with a couple of extreme sports publications, a local arts magazine, and a Sports Illustrated with a pair of pink-bikini-clad blondes on the cover. On the bottom was this week's TV guide.

"What are we going to do this weekend?" Billy asked from the couch.

"I dunno," Dom replied, flicking through the guide. Why did Orli even have it? Not like he ever turned on the TV that had come with the furnished house. "Go to the beach, I guess."

"You shouldn't give into Lij," Sean commented. "Just teaches him bad habits."

"At least he's house-trained," Billy commented blandly.

"Shit!" Dom suddenly cursed, and sat up straighter, blinked at the flimsy paper in his hand. "Orli!" he bawled.

"What?" echoed out of the kitchen.

"Did you know they screen FA Premiership League matches late Saturday nights?"

Half a second passed, and Orlando appeared in the kitchen doorway. "Bullshit." Dom just looked at him. "Who's playing tonight?"

"Man U and Southampton."

Elijah appeared in the doorway beside Orlando. "We're not going to the beach, are we?" he asked mournfully.


The first goal came five minutes in. The official record read six, but Dom always maintained it was five. At the time, he'd been in the kitchen with Elijah, washing up glasses.

"Why are we doing this?" Dom asked, passing another sudsy glass to Elijah, who was sitting on the bench beside the draining board, kicking his heels and occasionally flicking Dom with the teatowel. "I mean, we've got a perfectly good case of beer, and no reason to be squeamish about drinking out of the bottle."

"Some of us don't drink that filth," Elijah said loftily, holding the dried glass up to the light.

"Brat. So why am
I washing up again?"

"Purple isn't my colour," Elijah laughed, waving the towel at the bottle of detergent on the window sill. "Why the hell
does Orli have purple dishwashing liquid?"

"They were all sold out of pink?" Dom suggested, and they were laughing together when there came a roar from the TV, and Orli called out again.

"Dom!"

"Yeah, yeah," Dom called back, pulling the plug in the sink. "It's already started. We'll be there in a m--"

"Dom, get your fucking hobbit arse in here
right now. Andy Cole just fucking scored!"

In a new landspeed record, Dom was out of the kitchen in half a second flat, planting still-sudsy hands on the back of the couch to vault over the back and bounce on the cushion, landing beside Orli, who slung a jubilant arm around him. Dom returned the gesture, hugging Orli tight against him as the replay began. A smooth-as-silk manoeuvre - down the sideline, perfect cross, smacked straight into the back of the net.

"You fucking legend!" Dom shouted, free hand clenched in a fist and raised in the air.

"It didn't look that spectacular," Sean commented mildly from the armchair.

Two heads turned as one. "Shut up!"



It was a lazy Saturday afternoon, and across the neighbourhood, children were playing games in their back yard.

Dom and Orli were just two more.

Elijah watched them sourly from the top step, taking another drag of his cigarette. "We'd be at the beach by now." He squinted at the perfect blue sky. "Bet the waves are fucking great."

"You could go anyway, you know. Without us," Billy commented, from further down the steps. He was following the progress of the soccer ball as it bounced between the two players.

"Nah." Elijah grimaced. "It's too late now. Wouldn't get down there with enough time."

They watched Orli dribble the ball around the pillar of the clothes hoist, and fire it towards the makeshift goal between the lemon tree and the birdbath. Dom dove, made an athletic save.

"I thought they were tired," Elijah noted to no one in particular.

"Fanaticism." Sean, leaning against the doorway behind Elijah, didn't seem inclined to expand on his single-word answer.

Billy leaned sideways just enough to avoid the ball as it came bouncing off the stairs. "Watch it," he growled at Orlando.

All he got was a grin in response, as Orlando scooped up the ball. "Come on, you lot. Get up and have a go. The two masters versus you three slack bastards. Whaddya say?"

Billy turned around to look at Elijah, who looked up at Sean, then stubbed out his cigarette with a grin. Billy stood up, grabbed the ball from Orlando's hands. "I say we're going to kick your arse, pansy boy."


The second goal came at twenty-seven minutes.

Dom and Orli were halfway through their second beers, and getting rowdier by the minute. Billy had been trying to explain the finer points of the rules to Elijah, but they kept getting interrupted by screamed encouragement or abuse from the couch. Sean had long ago given up listening to the explanation, and was just laughing at the two fans. Elijah and Sean had been playing a drinking game, taking a sip every time one of them swore, but they'd had to stop after the third glass of bourbon and coke.

The whistle blew on the screen, and Dom practically bounced off the couch. "What the fucking hell was that?" he shouted, pointing at the screen, bristling with indignation. "I should fucking well think so too!"

("That Southampton guy was holding his arm - see there?" Billy said quietly to Elijah, pointing at the replay.

"Yeah, I got that. What's with the yellow card again?")

"
Fuck yeah!" Orli interjected, gesturing with his half-empty beer bottle. "Suck on that!"

("It's a warning."

"Oh right, I remember.")

They watched the number 7 line up his free kick. "You miss this, you gormless wanker, and we'll fucking skin you," Orli growled at the TV. The threats were unnecessary, as he curved the ball apparently effortlessly into the corner of the net, sailing beyond the keeper's outstretched fingers.

The two on the couch went up, bottles held triumphantly high. "You fucking genius!" Dom declared. He clinked the neck of his bottle against Orli's, and they both took a long drink, sharing a grin.

"Cantona he ain't," Dom noted, as they sat down again, while on screen the Manchester United boys continued to celebrate. "But this Beckham guy might just have some talent after all."



Billy was back on the back steps, his sleeve rolled up past his elbow. He was trying to twist his arm around to see if he'd missed a spot on the other side of his elbow. He heard the door open behind him, and turned around, holding the arm out. "Did I miss anywhere?"

Dom took the antiseptic-soaked cotton wool from his other hand, dabbed at a spot just under his elbow. "Sorry about that tackle, mate."

"Bastard."

"Hey, it would have been right if that bloody bush hadn't been there."

"Yeah, well," Billy replied, flexing his arm a little, "it really is a bloody bush now."

Dom laughed. "I think we killed it, actually."

"Two grown men falling on top of it will do that."

"Well, I'm grown, not sure about you." Dom didn't manage to duck quite fast enough to avoid the clip around the ear. But he did swipe antiseptic on Billy's nose, and bolted back inside the house, laughing.

Billy followed more slowly, heading into the living room, wiping his nose. "Shouldn't the others be back by now?" he asked. "I mean, they only went to get beer." He sat on the couch, picked up one of Orli's magazines and started flicking. On page 6 he paused. "Come to think of it, why did we send Elijah, the boy who doesn't drink beer, and Sean, who only drinks American beer, to get it?"

Dom came in from the kitchen, took the armchair. "Don't worry. Orli's with them. He'll keep them out of trouble."

Billy started laughing. "Yeah, right."


The third goal came with two minutes to spare in the first half.

Sean and Elijah had gone into the kitchen to get more bourbon, but that had been ten minutes ago. They were still in there. From the stray snatches Billy had overheard, it sounded like they were talking about basketball. At least some of the time. Himself, he was only half watching the soccer game. For the other half, he was watching the home-grown entertainment that was Dom and Orli.

Their eyes hardly moved from the screen. They muttered comments to each other without turning, just leaning closer against the other, turning their head slightly but never shifting their gaze. Never moving at all, unless it was to go and get another beer, a task they alternated at without actually talking about it. Just when one finished the bottle, the other would drink the last few mouthfuls, pass the empty bottle over. And whoever's turn it was would stand up carefully, eyes still not leaving the screen, and sidle around the couch, dash into the kitchen, and return with two full bottles.

They were constantly shifting on the couch, now poised on the edge, elbows propped on knees, now slouching back against the couch, limbs splayed. At one stage, full of nervous tension, Dom had levered himself up the back of the couch, sat on the back with his feet on the cushion. Orli hadn't even commented on that. He'd been too busy repeating: "Defend, defend, defend," like a mantra.

Now, Billy watched the light of the TV spilling over their open faces, now grimacing, then quickly into exultation, and then they were all animation, leaning forward, lips moving in a jumble of encouragement; "That's it, take it to 'em", "Go Giggsy!", "Hah! You fucking suck, Southampton", "Watch him fly", "
Go you good thing!", "Take it all the way", "Go you - YES!"

And as one, their arms went up in the air, twin shouts of exultation matching the noise from the television. Billy looked back to the TV to see a pile of red-shirted bodies mounting up in celebration, and he laughed and stood up.

"I'm out of here, guys. Some of us are still tired."

"Bye, Billy," they chorused in unison, eyes still not leaving the TV, and Billy went into the kitchen to say his farewells to those two.

When he came back through the lounge room on his way out, Dom and Orli had an arm around each others' shoulders, and were singing along with the crowd on the television: "Giggs, Giggs will tear you apart, again..."



It was getting late by the time Orlando, Elijah and Sean came tumbling up the front steps and in the door, swearing and shouting. First Orli, kicking open the screen door because his hands were occupied with a pile of three deliciously fragrant pizza boxes. The door swung shut behind him, just about catching Elijah in the face as he followed, a bottle of bourbon clutched in his hand.

"Bastard!" he called after Orli, barely breaking his stride or the flow of his conversation over his shoulder with Sean. "And there's absolutely no way he would have missed, even if he had, which is why he didn't."

Sean was last in, carrying the case of beer. He grinned at Dom and Billy, still sprawled in the lounge room, as he followed Elijah through into the kitchen. "So what was the purpose of Lucas showing it like that?"

"Because he's a moron!" Elijah insisted, as they disappeared into the kitchen.

Dom raised an eyebrow at Orlando, who'd collapsed over the back of the couch, keeping the pizza boxes steady with one hand. "The 'Greedo-shot-first' argument again?"

"Fucking hell!" Orlando said explosively. "Ever since the pizza place. They even got the guy behind the counter involved." He prised open the lid of the top box, letting out pepperoni-scented steam. "Want a slice?"

An Elijah-coloured blur sped in from the kitchen. "Me me me!" it insisted, performing a drive-by pizza-snatching.

Orlando growled as Elijah threw himself into the armchair, winding stray cheese around his finger. He grinned. "Don't snarl at me. It wasn't all my fault. The trolley jousting was Sean's idea for starters."

"Trolley jousting?" Billy repeated, leaning over to snaffle a slice of pizza.

"Hey, that was a good idea," Sean objected, coming in from the kitchen. "Orli's just upset because he couldn't talk that girl into pushing his trolley."

"It would have worked," Orli objected over the noise of Dom's laughter, "if some bastard hadn't told her that I was off my medication."

Elijah waved the remnants of his pizza slice, his words muffled by a mouthful. "That was just a misunderstanding."

Orlando made threatening gestures at the giggling hobbit, as Sean pilfered the last piece in the open box. "Anyway, you have Coke, but I can't find any clean glasses."

Orli leaned across to smack at Dom's shoulder, but it didn't seem to have any effect on his helpless laughter. He sighed, and tossed the empty box aside to get at the next pizza. "Nah, no clean glasses. Someone'll have to wash up." He bit into the slice, chewed thoughtfully for a few moments before swallowing, and grinning. "Dom and Elijah can do it."


Southampton scored ten minutes into the second half.

At half time, Dom and Orli had come barrelling into the kitchen, raucous and laughing, tossing their empty bottles into the carton with a clink of glass. Orli levered Elijah away from his position leaning against the fridge so they could get two more beers, and Dom bounced up onto the bench beside Sean. "What the fuck are you doing in here?" he demanded, as Sean eyed him. "You're missing one hell of a game."

He laughed, exhilirated, as Orlando passed him a beer, ruffled his hair with an echoing laugh.

Sean smiled, bemused. "Good, is it?" He shook his head as Dom offered a swig of his beer.

"Good?" Orli repeated, laughing. "It's fucking fantastic. We're
killing them."

Dom crowed his agreement, and the pair clinked the necks of their bottles together, took matching swigs.

Elijah shook his head. "Whatever. Anyway, I was just saying, guys, I'm going to leave. Go home and call Liv, see if she wants to go to a club or something."

"You uncultured swine," Dom declared. He turned to Orlando, shaking his head. "Honestly, the youth of today."

"Shameful," Orli agreed, and grinned at Elijah, who cheerfully gave him the finger.

"Ah well," Dom said philosophically, slinging an arm around Sean, "at least some people appreciate quality sport, right?"

Sean rolled his eyes, but smiled apologetically at Elijah. "I'll catch up with you later, Lij."

And so it was only the three of them sitting there, Dom and Orli back on the couch, Sean in the armchair, when Southampton got a surprise interception. Immediately, the two fans on the couch were up, Dom leaning forward, Orli bouncing on the couch, berating, urging, shouting at the Man U defense, caught entirely unawares, to do something - anything - about the sudden attack.

"Come on, get back, get on him," Dom urged quietly.

Orli just frowned in silence. And then animated suddenly, as the ball went sailing past the outnumbered keeper. "No!
Fuck!"

Dom groaned, sliding down in his seat until Sean thought he might slide right off. "Bloody fucking buggery," he muttered into the hands covering his face.

"How embarrassing," Orlando muttered, swigging disconsolately from his bottle.

"You're still up by two," Sean pointed out.

Dom's hands fell, and two glares fixed upon him. "That's not the point," Dom stated.



The game over, Orli was slumped half underneath the coffee table, balancing his beer bottle on his stomach. Trying to, at least. Failing. He was laughing too hard, and the bottle slid off sideways, thudding to the carpet.

"Thank God it's empty," Dom remarked from where he was lying sprawled across the couch, one leg lolling off so his thigh bumped Orli's shoulder where it leant against the couch. "That'd be a hideous waste of good liquor which you obviously don't need because you're already pissed and that's why you can't balance a bottle on your stomach." Pronouncement made, he drained his own beer, fumbled the empty bottle onto the table.

"I could do it if you'd stop making me laugh," Orli retorted, retrieving his own bottle, and settling it back on his stomach. "I can do this, I tell you."

"The fuck you can," Dom laughed. He went back to channel-surfing, looking for something good in the late-night post-soccer television desert.

The bottle thudded against the carpet again. "Ah-hah!" Orli crowed. "It's the buttons on the shirt."

"What the hell are you doing?"

"Unbuttoning my shirt. Obviously. How fucking drunk are you, Dom?"

"Not as much as you, obviously."

"Fuck you. Look; sober enough to balance a beer bottle on my stomach."

"You're a god. A drunken god, but a god nonetheless."

"Fuck you twice." Orli set the bottle on the table, made sure it was actually going to stay there as he sat up straighter. He stared at the images on the television screen in frowning silence for a moment, before carefully asking: "Dom, what the hell are you watching?"

"Sshh," Dom hissed, waving the remote. "This thing apparently slices and dices. If it can balance a beer bottle on its stomach I'm buying one."

Orlando stared at the screen, eyes wide, for a moment, then twisted around to look at Dom, who appeared entirely enraptured by the screen, face thoughtful.

"Besides," he added. "I'm trying to figure out whether the assistant's breasts are real."

Laboriously, Orlando clambered up onto his knees, shuffled around until he was facing Dom on the couch. "Domininic," he said seriously, "I'm arresting you for being drunk in charge of the remote." He held out a hand. "Give it up. You've got nowhere to go."

"Fuck off," Dom replied, laughing. "It even comes apart easily for washing."

Orlando pushed himself up to his feet, balanced one knee on the edge of the couch to lean over Dom, reaching for the remote. "Hand over the remote and no one gets hurt."

"I won't go quietly!" Dom declared, snatching the remote away, holding it above his head. "Never surrender!"

"Listen, Braveheart," Orli growled, leaning further, reaching after the remote. He stretched, and his knee slipped. He landed hard on Dom, breath whooshing out of his lungs.

"Fuck!" It was strange, hearing Dom's voice and feeling it through his chest at the same time, slightly breathless.

Orli had half-collapsed laughing, his head against Dom's shoulder. "Come out with your hands up," he wheezed. "We have you surrounded."

Dom laughed with him, lying together on the couch. The laughter diminished, trickled away, and Orlando realised they were still lying here, his face against Dom's shoulder, Dom's hand, holding the remote, draped across his back. Comfortable.

He raised his head, and Dom turned slightly to look up at him.

"You're not that drunk," Dom said quietly.

"Neither are you," Orli replied.


The final goal came with three minutes remaining.

Sean was long gone, seizing his opportunity to flee while Dom and Orli were distracted by the yellow carding of one of the Manchester defenders. While they were swearing and gesturing, he grabbed his coat and crept out the door, grinning back at them. Orlando hurled his bottle cap at the screen.

It had been ten minutes later that Dom had looked around, blinking, and asked: "What happened to Sean?"

"Huh?" Orli didn't even look away from the screen. "Sean?"

"Yeah, he's gone."

"Oh. Shame. Ref! He's fucking offside!"

But generally, it had been a half of mucking about in the midfield, changeovers, messy tackles, and abortive manouevring around the goals. They were both restless, shifting uneasily on the couch as they watched the clock ticking down.

Then, suddenly, it was on down the right wing, Giggs flying past the defense, and there were two men on the inside. He wound up for the cross...

But the ball ricocheted off an incoming defender, bounced out. Manchester United corner; four minutes to go.

"Make it count, boys," Orli breathed, leaning forward so far he was barely still on the couch. Dom was curled up at the back of the couch, chewing on a thumb nail.

There was pushing and shoving in front of the goal, and the corner came floating in, high and true. The pack went up, and a Manchester striker connected beautifully, sent the header straight at the goal, only to be blocked by the keeper's hastily extended hand.

"No!"

The loose ball bounced back out, through a tussle, and then a lithe figure swept in, boot connected, and smacked it straight into the back of the net.

"Yes!"

Orli was on his feet, arms stretched triumphantly to the ceiling. He staggered as Dom's weight hit him in the back, arms wrapping around his neck.

"Yeehah!" Dom screeched in his ear. "The baby-faced assassin strikes again."

"Solsjkaer is the fucking
man," Orlando agreed. He hooked his hands under Dom's knees, hitched him higher on his back. "We need a beer to celebrate."

"No fucking kidding," Dom agreed, and stretched one arm out. "To the fridge!"

And that was the ball game.



Dom came back from the toilet, down the corridor, and Orlando was leaning in the doorway to his room, shirt unbuttoned, a mysterious half-smile on his face. As Dom came closer, Orli slipped sideways, slid into his room, his back against the door.

Dom kept moving forwards, stopped Orli's sideways slide with a hand against the door, above his shoulder. Kept moving forwards, moved his other arm up, slid his palms up the grain of the wood, braced his forearms against the door above Orli's shoulders. Pressed Orli to the door with his arms beside his ears and their bodies warm together.

"Where do you think you're going?" Dom breathed.

"Nowhere," Orli replied.

He grinned, and Dom grinned, and they grinned together, mouths meeting, opening. Dom felt Orli's tongue slide along his own, nipped at his lip, parted with his breath coming short.

"Hey Dom," Orli said conversationally, his hands pushing up under the back of Dom's shirt.

"Yeah?" Dom responded, fingers curling into Orli's hair.

Orli's arms tightened around him. "Get your fucking hobbit arse in here. Someone's about to fucking score."

They laughed, and Orli pushed and Dom staggered, and Dom pulled and Orli fell forward and then they were on the bed. They wriggled upwards, getting comfortable as Orli pushed his tongue past Dom's teeth, and Dom pushed Orli's shirt off his shoulders, ran his hand over a stomach flat enough to balance a beer bottle on.

Orlando flinched away from the contact, and Dom grinned against his mouth. "Are you ticklish?"

"Fuck you, Monaghan," Orli growled, then subsided as Dom pushed him back, attacked him with lips and teeth and hands until Orli was happy to just lie there, hands in Dom's hair, gripping his shoulders. Happy to obligingly lift his hips for Dom to slide off his jeans and boxers in one go.

More than fucking happy when Dom's hand closed around him, grip firm and easy and certainly not wasting any time. Orli gasped, his head falling back against the pillow. He arched upwards into Dom's hand, breath hissing through his teeth. "Oh, fuck," he grated. "Oh God."

Dom grinned in his ear, breath fast and damp, licked against the lobe. "In bed, you can just call me Dom."

Orli's laughter sounded breathless. "Fuck you." Dom chuckled, and changed something, the rhythm, the grip. Orli gasped again. "Oh, fuck."

But an instant later, his hand was on Dom's, slowing, stopping, and he was pushing at Dom's shoulder. "No. You... you're still fucking dressed." Dom found himself on his back, and Orli was quick and efficient. His mouth was back on Dom's the instant his shirt was over his head. They stretched out together, naked, and when Orli moved against him, Dom inhaled sharply.

"You know," he confessed, "this wasn't in my plans for this weekend."

Orli moved against him again, and fuck that was good. Orli grinned. "It was in mine."

"Do that again," Dom demanded.

"What, this?"

"God. Yeah, that. It was in your plans?"

"Yep. Eat pizza, sleep in, shag Dom."

They'd established a rhythm now, rubbing against each other, and when Dom laughed, it sounded strained even to his ears. "Nice to know where I rank in the scheme of things."

"Well, you don't have that melty cheese."

"Would you like me to?"

"Kinky - fuck! Kinky bastard."

It was good - God, it was good - this friction against each other, but it wasn't quite enough. Dom wrapped his knee around Orli's legs, tried to press closer, but it still wasn't there. It needed something else.

His hand was moving almost before he thought of it, slipped between their stomachs. And there it tangled with another hand.

Dom met Orli's eyes, and they grinned. Hands separated, found what they were looking for. They took deep breaths in unison. Hands began to move, slow, steady, and Dom suddenly chuckled.

"What?" Orli demanded.

"I just wondered," Dom began, grip firm, rhythm leading, the promise of momentum. "Do you think they do this?"

"Who?" Orli asked, head dropped to Dom's shoulder, where it had been before, and he bit lightly at his clavicle.

"Soccer players," Dom gasped, beginning to move now, matching pace. "After a game. An away game. High on adrenaline. Horny as f- fuck!" Orli's mouth covered his, tongues moving like their hands, together, deep, and he fell back, gasping for breath. "Horny as fuck," he repeated, trying to remember what he'd been saying, trying to remember if it was important. "But the girls... far away. And teammates just there. In the showers."

"The showers," Orli repeated, breath rasping in his throat, against Dom's throat where his lips moved against Dom's tilted-back chin.

"Yeah." Dom squeezed his eyes shut, arched against Orli, swallowed hard with his Adam's apple under Orli's tongue. "Just there. Naked. Skin. Soapy. It slides. Togeth- oh fuck, Orli."

And he came, they both came, hands and bodies and breath shaking together. Orli's head against his shoulder where it had been before. Before, when he realised how much might be possible. Before, when he realised how much he wanted it to be possible.

"Fuck you, Dom," Orli panted, lips moving against the skin of his shoulder. "I'm never going to be able to watch a soccer game with a straight face ever again."