After the Goat Track
Rating R for smut with love
Word Count 1378
After the Goat Track
There was not much time at all between
the crunch of the jolly against the muddy sand, and the exchange of
money at the inn counter. Ten minutes at most, Horatio thought. They
had not run, precisely. That would have been pitifully undignified.
But they did scamper, faster and faster, until they came up panting
at the door of the inn.
They had the evening, they had the
night. Had the water casks been sound and sweet they would have had
neither. Had they not been sent to procure more yesterday they would
be on the Indy avoiding Captain Pellew until he calmed himself.
“At least we found that the water was
bad, while we were able to stop for more.”
And he was speaking it to the ceiling.
Archie had him pinned against the closing door.
“I've never seen the old man so
“ Well, the cost-- and the
“As he said: The admiralty can go
Archie growled at some length on this
subject, but his mouth was an indistinct buzzing against the skin.
And Horatio's ears were very happy, but not exactly listening.
Archie dropped to his knees, rubbing
all the way down, with the front of himself. And oh, the hardness
between them. His hands were at Horatio's flies when he noticed.
Archie reached behind, his hands light, gentle. Horatio winced.
Archie sat back, hands in his lap. His
mouth had gone to a flat line.
“What have you done to your hind end,
Horatio?” His voice was quiet.
“I fell down, yesterday. When we were
bringing the barrels back. Going down that goat track, or whatever it
was. I slid, for some distance, ha'hm. Over gravel. Into a
“Let me see.”
Archie worked the trousers down with
exquisite care. He did not touch skin, not the back which stung and
burned, nor the front which ached and needed. When the trousers were
crumpled at Horatio's feet. Horatio stepped out of them. He let
Archie lead him the few steps to the bed. Horatio stretched out,
bottom side up. He had left room, but Archie did not come to lie
Archie knelt again, beside the bed this
time. Horatio felt chilled and a little foolish, but he was still so
hard, so ready. He let his eyes close a little. Archie still looked
real and vivid, gold and white, but everything beyond wavered into
streaks of light. He felt Archie draw the shirttail up. He shivered.
“Oh, Honeybee.” Archie's voice was
soft. Horatio felt a sigh shudder through his chest, and out.
“It is glowing, ” Archie
whispered. He touched. He set his wrist against the near buttock,
like someone feeling for fever. Archie felt cool as water, Horatio's
skin too big, too hot.
“Poor Horatio.” Archie lowered his
head like a drinking deer. The kiss was just at the tailbone, soft,
brief. Horatio twitched anyhow. Archie drew back. He lifted the
shirt higher, the air was cool.
“It is not so bad,” Horatio said.
“I still want to--”
“So do I, ” Archie said. “But we
have to be...careful.”
Horatio wanted to say that there were a
hundred ways to-- and he didn't even care. He just wanted Archie
against him, within, everything. But Archie's gaze was avid, and his
hand was all along the inside of Horatio's thigh now. There was no
pain there, quite the opposite. It was slow and warm and Horatio
lifted himself a little to bring it more promisingly higher.
“Careful.” Archie said again. His
fingers rested now, at the junction of thigh, and everything, so
“It looks as if you've had your
bottom strapped.” Archie's voice was a slow growl. He hated to see
Horatio hurt, but this did not seem entirely that sort of growl.
“How many of those have you seen?”
“Oh a fair number. Surely you have
too, at school, I mean.”
“I didn't like to look.”
Horatio did not say, even to Archie,
that it had made him sick to look. That sweat had crawled under his
arms, and he had always fixed his eyes anywhere but upon the
Archie gave quiet huff of laughter.
Horatio thought he knew anyway.
“You saw it done to me.”
Punishments of midshipmen the Indy were
private matters. Young gentlemen could tell or not, as they chose.
The old men never said anything. Justinian had been quite otherwise.
Horatio had seen Archie caned, twice on the foredeck. He had not
looked away. It has been horrid. It had been --confusing.
He rolled to his side, needing close,
needing more. His breath was caught in his throat somehow. He pressed
his face to Archie, burrowing against the white shirt, against the
heart, heat, breath of him.
“And your father never either, did
he? My poor Horatio.”
Why this should make him poor Horatio
was a question that slid away with the caressing hand. Archie had
asked this more than once. Horatio had replied more than once.
“Hmm.” Archie's reply was not given
in words but in a burrowing nuzzling growl. It was a happy sound.
“You sound like a bear,” Horatio
“You are the one that is bare.”
He was unbuttoning Horatio's shirt, at
speed, to make it so. He helped Horatio out of it, flung it aside.
Horatio reached out to return the service.
The hand was at his hip now, stroking
the curve of flank and leg. He was aching, now, jutting. The stroke
of Archie's hand would be enough. And Archie was looking at him, not
touching as Horatio wished, but gazing long and full. His eyes were
dark, and his cheeks flushed now. He was gnawing his lip, and the
sight of him made Horatio's hips rock forward on their own.
Horatio had him by the hands now,
pulling them close, kissing the palms, tugging him forward.
“Lie down with me.”
Twined now like seaweed, slow as
underwater fronds, they rocked repeatedly in a warm and rising tide.
There was not levered purchase this way, no up or down. There was no
pressure on the bruised and outraged skin. There was only delight
down the fronts of them, spreading and melting and rising. And
Horatio's eyes had to shut. His own hand on Archie's hip pulled
forward once, and again.
“It's coming Horatio--”
Archie's breath was rasping now. His
head nodding with each move. He was shuddering at the apex, and he
was, and it was, and it did. And Horatio was slid in the salty tide.
He pressed to the shuddering heat. Pleaseplease--it came for
him too a moment after.
On the ship they were habitually swift
and careful. Here they could let the moment expand as it would, let
eyes caress, let hands delight.
Horatio reached up to push Archie's
hair back. His own hair was unruly loose but obedient once braided.
Nothing dislodged it. Archie's was the other way entirely. His hair
slid free over and over, flopping into his eyes. He had a way of
pushing it back with a swipe of the hand. He did it when he was
reading. It was impatient, careless, dear. Now Horatio pushed the
hair from Archie's flushed and heated face. He kissed the place of
it, brow, nose. He kissed the hand that would push the hair back,
tonight, as Archie read, and every night, just the same way.
Something rippled over his skin, a
shiver. He turned in Archie's arms. Archie snuggled close, already
half asleep. He pushed up to push Horatio's hair away from his nose.
Horatio caught the hand and pulled it around and close. The damp
heat was delicious against his sore places. He did not have to rush
to fall asleep, to get all the sleep he could. There was time to lie
in comfort and daydream. To let his thoughts range, to--
“You are snoring Honeybee.”