|Agent Fox Mulder (i_want_2) wrote in multi_fiction,|
@ 2011-01-29 11:24:00
|Entry tags:||rated: teen, rps, slash|
Fic: In Sickness And Hell 1/1 RPS Leverage
Title: In Sickness And Hell.
Author: Lopaka Tanu
Disclaimer: None of this is real and is not intended in anyway to resemble those portrayed within in any actual way.
Characters: Tim Hutton, Chris Kane
Prompt: Tim comforts a sick Chris.
Fandom: Leverage RPS
Summary: The distance put between them by Chris is more than physical and it strains their relationship.
Author's Note: For usakeh, the generous Buy-it-now winner!
"I just don't see why it has to be now." Raising the arm rest, Tim checked for anything underneath. There were only four napkins and half a candy wrapper. He softly sighed at the sad state of his car. Six months in the hands of Noah and it had already depreciated by half the resale value. Thinking of one young man reminded him of another, he glared at the phone in his other hand. "You said you wanted to meet them."
"I do, darlin'." To his credit, Chris actually sounded remorseful. Too bad it was a crock of shit. He had made a choice to stay out there. "Speaking of which, I heard you got called back to the set for a day. How'd that turn out?"
Before he could respond, Tim's hand came away from the grip with something sticky and not entirely wholesome looking. He was going to have to have another talk with that boy. "We just finished reshooting that fucking scene again. I almost told that hack where he could stick his advice and my contract. He acts like two years out of film school with a golden globe and he knows everything. These idiot kids get younger every year. It makes me sick."
Chris' raspy laugh sounded tinny over the cellphone's speakers. "I told you."
"Don't even. I'm not going to be distracted from this." Tim slammed the arm rest down with a growl. Staring out the windshield, he checked to see if the light had turned. "You promised me time off from the touring. Adding dates, Christian, is not 'taking it easy'. I had no choice in why I wasn't here, but at least I did my job and made it back when I said I would. It's called taking some responsibility."
"You know, that sounds remarkably like my father." The other man was well aware of the effect it had on him when he said that. That's why he always said it when they got into it like this.
Traffic eased forward just enough that he had to move. Gritting his teeth, Tim clenched the wheel. After checking his mirror, he gave the car a little gas. "Don't start that, you know how much I hate that. I already feel bad..."
Clearing his throat, Chris rasped over the line. "Look, I'm sorry, darlin'. But, Steve's..."
"Don't you fucking dare!" It was already a bad day. After an eight hour flight across the country, he was no longer in the mood to deal with this shit. "Make up your mind. Are you ready to give this a shot or should I start looking around?"
Instead of giving the other man time to respond, Tim smacked the 'End Call' button on his droid. Just to be sure, he held the power button until the screen flashed and it turned off. Leaning back in the seat, he rest an arm on the wheel. Tim huffed, puffing out his cheeks to ease the stress.
The hall was poorly lit as he stepped off the elevator. The good thing about living in a private building was that he didn't have to fear the dark. Of course, this being a private building also meant there should have been working lights in the hall. He sighed with frustration and made his way to the front door.
Fobbing the keys to his apartment, he trudged the rest of the way with slumped shoulders. After more than twenty hours of being awake, he was dragging ass. He shouldn't have driven himself home. Two hours in city traffic had left him completely exhausted. That was almost as bad as driving drunk.
Great, he snorted, all he needed was to add an accident to his growing pile.
Finally, he reached the door. Cracking his neck, he inserted the key and threw the lock. Next came the keypad. Entering the code, he had to pause and blink a few times to make out the numbers. Then, he had to recall the right sequence. The shit part of working and living in two different time zones was the all the damned separate things he had to remember about living in two time zones.
Someone out there must have been smiling at him because he got it right on the first try. Hearing the secondary lock snick back, he grabbed the handle and pushed the door open. Cool air hit him like a wall of ice. Shivering, he closed his eyes to take in the sensation. After being out in the heat, this was a welcome relief.
He took a deep breath, then exhaled and opened his eyes. The apartment was just as he had left it two days ago. Milo's toys were still on the floor by the couch. One of Noah's cameras was in pieces on the table where it had sat for the past seven months. Nothing had changed.
It never did. At least, not the way he wanted.
Tim knew this was silly. He should have known it wasn't going to work out. Two months of hiding it and he still wasn't even sure what 'It' was.
After walking into his apartment, he softly closed the door behind him. After slipping off his jacket, he bypassed the living room for the bedrooms. He wasn't in the mood to watch some mindless entertainment to unwind. A hot shower would have to suffice.
On the way past, he cast a quick glance at the machine. The message light wasn't blinking. Shaking his head, he continued on.
The click of the heater kicking on was made loud in the silent bedroom. Tim realized he was dozing, too lazy to quite wake himself up. He didn't know how long he had been out, it didn't feel long enough, though. Body aching in several, now familiar places, he decided to just lay there.
He had at least another day before the ex brought Milo over. Tim didn't even want to think her name. Everything was still too raw, even a year after they had made the decision. Hell, he still couldn't bring himself to actually file the papers yet.
That was part of what this weekend was supposed to be about.
Snorting, he nuzzled his cheek into the satin pillow case. After the rough, scratchy material of those damned hotels, it was nice to be back in his own bed. God, he had missed this place. Hell, he had missed everything about being in New York. Even the screaming idiots in every other car during a traffic jam made him nostalgic.
It was all perfect, there really wasn't any other place like it on the planet.
The shrill ring from his bedside table made him jerk. Heart racing, he rolled over to grab the damn phone before it could ring again. Sucking in a quick breath, he cleared his throat to give himself a second to calm down. After he exhaled, he put the speaker to his ear. "Yeah?"
"Timothy?" The voice on the other end was vaguely familiar. He was a little hesitant in pronouncing the name, almost as if he wasn't sure how to.
Hearing his full name like that sent a chill through Tim. Now wide awake and wary, he stared at the phone. "Who is calling?"
"Are you Hutton or not?" Copping an attitude, the guy was obviously not the patient type.
Unfortunately for him, neither was Tim. "Get to the point or I'll have your nuts for waking me up." Checking the bedside clock, he found that it was three in the afternoon, Wednesday. He had been out for almost sixteen hours.
"You sound like the fucker's type." Now the man was amused. That didn't last long as he sobered up. "Listen, you need to get your ass to L.A.. I know he's totally going to kill me over this, but, I figured, you'd probably kill him first for not letting you know."
"Whoa, whoa, wait. Slow down and go back." Clenching his eyes shut, Tim fought off a sudden headache. He ran a hand over the top of his head to brush his hair off his face. "Who is in L.A., and why do I have to kill him?"
"Chris, man." He paused. "Uh, this is Steve, Carlson. You know, from the band."
Clenching his eyes shut, Tim tried real hard not to yell at the guy. It wasn't his fault Chris was being such a child about all of this. "Yeah, okay, I remember." He sat up with a groan. "What has Christian gotten himself into this time and how much bail money do I need to raise?"
"Nah, it's nothing like that. He's really going to be okay."
That froze Tim mid-yawn. Swallowing, he felt his heart skip a beat. "Okay? What's happened?" With some amount of strength, he managed to keep his voice above a harsh whisper. "How bad is he?"
"Uh, I'm starting to think this was a bad idea. Sorry about that, you know, the waking you up."
"Wait!" But, before he got more than that out, the line went dead. The phone dropped from his grip to the bed. He stared numbly had the receiver.
Tim barely felt it as the TSA agent's hands slid over his body. Staring out the concourse windows, he watched another large plane taxi down the runway. In just over six hours he would be in L.A. He hadn't been there in months.
A figure stood up, blocking his view. "All right, sir, you are cleared to go."
"Thanks." Nodding, he headed through the check point to pick up his carry-on from the scanner. It wasn't much, just enough to get him through two days in sunny weather.
Once he was clear of the line, he reached into his bag and took out the droid. He had to wait a moment for it to come back on before dialing. It was ringing before he put it to his ear.
"Are you on your way yet?"
"No, still got a half hour. I was just calling to check on you again." Hefting the straps from his duffel higher up his shoulder, Tim searched for the right gate. The flashing signs all looked alike to his tired eyes. "Do you have everything you'll need?"
"Yeah, dad, it's fine." Noah's exasperation was tempered with knowing concern.
He had taught him that much. It was okay, Noah was a great kid, he had a level head on his shoulders. "Thank you, again, for watching your brother. I know you have that new project..."
"It's fine, dad, seriously. Just, go be with your boyfriend. Tell him I hope he get's better fast."
"He's not..." Tim trailed off when the phone beeped at him. Frowning, he wondered what the hell happened. He stared at the phone for a second, the message on it taking several to register in his mind. When he realized that Noah had hung up on him, he was too worn out to bother feeling angry. Sighing, he turned it off and stuffed it back in his bag.
Once he was in L.A., he would think about it then.
Making his way through the airport towards the car rentals, Tim took each measured step with a quick breath. He ignored every other person around him. Eyes forward, there was just one goal for him here. Tim knew that, if he stopped even for a moment, he would snap. People seemed to know this and gave him a wide berth.
Maybe it was his appearance. His hair, while always considered unruly, was now a physical manifestation of his sheer manic state. There was three days worth of facial hair growth and the lack of sleep made his eyes burn, probably blood shot. If he didn't have a recognizable face, someone would have called security. Hell, the probably should have any ways.
Yet, this was L.A., not some where sane. Instead, by the time he crossed the concourse, he was hit with the flash of paparazzi. The look he gave the one who dared block his path made the man back away, his camera snapping away with a mechanical whine. Absently, Tim noted the man's gear was old and worn, probably an amateur or some idiot on vacation.
That was all he had time for before he stepped into the queue for a rental agency. Zig-zaging his way through the empty line, he some how lost track of his feet and floated to the desk. Upon reaching the counter, he stared at the girl with as much civility as he could muster.
She glanced up with a bored expression. It quickly shifted to one of alarm. "May I help you?"
"Yes, you can." Resting an arm on the counter, he smiled at her. "I'm going to need a car, chauffeured, preferably by someone who speaks English without an accent and knows his way around the greater Los Angeles area." Voice cracking from lack of use, he saw the girl tremble. "Please."
The only move she made was to inch slowly towards the opposite end of the counter towards, what he assumed, was the alarm button.
Stuffing his hand down the back of his pants, he grabbed the wallet from his jeans. "I have a black card and no regard for how it's used. Just get me the god damned car with a minimum of fuss and I'll leave you a diamond tip." Just to be an ass, he withdrew it quickly and threw it at her.
Upon seeing the plastic, her eyes went wide. Suddenly, her entire posture changed. Sticking out her chest, she flipped her hair. "Yes, sir."
Cracking his knuckles, he glanced out over the floor. The airport was busy for after midnight. Though, it wasn't really a surprise.
God, he hated these places.
Feeling adrift, Tim blinked slowly. He tried to stare out the tinted windows, but the road went by too fast for him to notice. After a full hour stuck in traffic just to get out of the airport, he wasn't used to the feel of the road. At least the air inside the car was breathable. He couldn't say the same for outside.
Curious, he frowned out the windshield. There weren't any street signs visible, but he was able to see that they were heading away from down town towards Santa Monica. Chris' apartment wasn't far from there. Realizing how close he was eased the weight in his chest. Without thinking about it, he relaxed back into the seat.
It would be at least another hour before he got there due to traffic and signals. It would have been quicker back in New York. There was at least some semblance of order on the streets there. Here, everyone was wandering around aimlessly.
He knew the feeling.
When the burning in his eyes became too much, he reached up to rub at them. It wasn't the smartest thing to do. His optometrist would probably throw a shit fit. The man said they were already bad enough since he refused to wear his glasses all the time. Snorting, he shook his head.
Swallowing past the thickness in his throat, he looked up, out the windows again. God, he hoped Chris was all right.
Taking a deep breath, he composed himself with a slightly raised chin. He exhaled slowly to buy a little more time. Then, he was out of excuses. Holding up one hand, he rapped three times on the door, ignoring the chime. All that was left to do was wait.
He didn't have to stand there long.
With a soft groan from the hinges, the door swung open wide enough for Steve's belligerent face to appear in the crack. He was instantly recognizable from the three days they had spent together filming that fucking music video. The moment the man got a look of him, he quickly paled and his features went slack. "I..."
He held up hand to cut Steve off. "Where is he?" Tim was almost startled by the sound of his own voice. It was that of a stranger, so rough and desiccated sounding.
That startled him even further. "Jesus, shit. Man, you look like hell!" Steve took a quick breath and backed up a step. "Have you slept in like, ever?"
Not in any mood for this, Tim raised his voice. "Where is he?" He took an angry step forward with the intent of pushing his way in the apartment if he had to. That wouldn't be very much longer.
"Uh, yeah." Taking another step back, Steve frowned. He seemed to compose himself as he pulled the door further open. "Right this way. He's in the back bedroom watching TV."
"Watching TV?" Walking through the door, Tim tried not to growl at the man. It was restrained when he did it. At least he didn't bare his teeth at him.
Once again, Tim found himself hesitating outside a door. His hand hovered reluctantly over the knob. Why he couldn't make himself make the final motion to turn it escaped him at the moment. There was nothing really dangerous on the other side. No matter how angry he was, confronting Chris wasn't exactly facing down a din of lions. Besides that, this is why he had come out here.
Yet, he still held back.
Dropping his chin, he caught movement out of the corner of his eye.
Steve was carrying a bowl of cereal into the living room from the kitchenette.
Being reminded of why he was here instead of back home with his kids made his fist clench over the handle. That was good. Anger gave him purpose.
He was in the process of turning it when he heard a distinctive hacking cough. It was painful and wheezing sounding, like the person was close to hacking up a lung. The noise came to an end with a hawking and spit.
Tim winced in disgust. On an impulse, he looked over at Steve again.
The other man was staring at him with an equally disgusted expression. His spoon was paused halfway to his mouth. He gestures for Tim to go in with it.
Narrowing his eyes, Tim silently promised the other retribution. He sucked in a quick breath and pushed the damned door open. Then a wave of hot, humid air washed over, nearly staggering him.
A mountain of tissues over flowing a trash can at the foot of the bed was the first thing he saw. Most still looked moist and it sent a shudder through him. The room was stuffy and had the smell of antiseptic and Vick's. In fact, the menthol smell was so strong it burned his nostrils.
"Close the damn door." The voice was so hoarse and scratchy that it was almost unrecognizable.
Looking over, Tim found the owner bundled up in no less than four blankets like a colorful mummy. Bathrobe laid open at the chest for the vaporub, only this and his face were visible above pile. His greasy hair hung around his head in thick clumps. Every visible inch of skin was waxy and pale except his nose. That was bright red and rubbed raw.
Opened at half mast, hazy blue eyes struggled to focus on Tim. Chris gave every indication he was sick. "What are you doing here?" Voice scratchy, he winced from having to speak and cleared his throat.
Hearing Chris speak snapped Tim out of his observation. Blinking a few times, he cleared his eyes of the dry spots. "I'm here for you."
"You're supposed to still be in New York." Rustling around, Chris wrestled a hand free from his blanket cocoon to raise a tissue to his nose. With a loud honk, he blew into the tiny tissue.
"Yes, and funny thing, so are you." Tilting his head a little to the side, Tim tried not to show his disgust. He had never been good with people and bodily fluids. "Instead, I find you here, one foot in the grave." Raising a hand, he gestured at the general vicinity of the bed. "Care to explain this one and why I had to get find out about it from your drummer instead of you?"
"Traitor," came the shout from the living room. It was quickly followed by, "Hey! I play..."
"I don't give a damn!" Kicking the door shut, Tim shoved his fists into his jacket pocket to keep from doing something he might regret. He advanced on the bed with an irate expression. "What the hell is going on, Christian? I thought..." he trailed off with a sigh and looked away. "I have no idea, not any more."
All the while, Chris had laid there braced against the pillows, staring at Tim. His half-open eyes narrowed even further and he sneered. "What? Think this is somethin' I..."
"Deserve?" It was out in a whisper. Yet, he looked up in expectation. Tim didn't know whether he really felt that way or not. All he wanted to do was get something out of the other man. "I don't know. What is going on here, between us?"
Chris just continued to stare at him.
After a full minute, Tim clenched his lips and glanced down at the floor. "Please, Chris, give me something. Anything."
Tim closed his eyes, nodding his understanding. "What part?"
"Everything. It fuckin'..." Chris gasped. Wheezing, he tried to draw breath for a heartbeat, then he was coughing. Eyes bugging out, he started hacking. His breaths came in short gasp between coughs.
Jerking his hands free, Tim rushed to the bed mindless of the emotions of a second ago. At the bed, he dropped down to Chris' side and wrapped a supporting arm around his shoulders to help the man lean forward.
Putting out to brace himself, Chris leaned against him. His entire body contorted in the coughing fit. Between each one, he sucked down a painful groaning breath.
Locking his lover against him with the man's arm, Tim used the one he had around the other's shoulders to smack his back. The blows were firm, but not painfully so.
After a few moments, Chris was able to clear his throat and breathe easier. Sucking in a shuddering breath, he nodded his thanks and lowered his weight backwards.
Tim helped ease his lover back into the covers. He tried to be as gentle as possible. Once Chris was fully settled in, he reluctantly pulled his arm free. Instead of taking it completely back, he let his hand linger on the other's shoulder.
When he had the strength to open his eyes, Chris looked up at him. There was an unreadable expression in them.
Unable to stop himself, Tim reached over to brush the greasy hair from the other's face. His fingers remained behind, brushing knuckles over the sweaty skin. When no protest or rebuke came, he settled his palm against Chris' cheek. "Will you let me be here for you?"
Chris looked away. After a second, he nodded once.
Sighing with relief, he closed his eyes. He nodded his acceptance and stood up. "My driver is waiting down stairs. I'll just get my bag and send him back."
Turning for the door, he heard Chris exhale with relief. It rekindled his anger a little, but, for the sake of peace now, he let it go. They would work it out later. Now, he was needed here and this was what they both wanted. He paused at the door to speak one last thing. "When you're better, I expect you to make room for me in that bed."
"Fine, darlin'', when I'm better."
With another nod, Tim walked out. They both knew what he really meant.