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10 June 2005 @ 10:05 pm
Bona Fides, part 5 (Alias, J/V)  
ETA, 11:43 PM: Gah. Something important in the last few lines of this was *totally* wrong and I've changed it. Not obviously huge, but significant, if only to me, obssessively focused author.



Bona Fides

5.

It was Friday, it was the morning after, and it was--seven-thirty, Vaughn realized, eyes snapping fully open. He sat up in a mild panic, swung his legs over the edge of the bed, and rubbed at his hair to wake the top of his brain up. "Fuck," he muttered, then yawned widely.

He shambled like the undead into the shower and then hurried, half wet, into his clothes before heading to the kitchen. Jack sat at the table reading the paper and eating cereal. He had no suit jacket, no tie.

Vaughn's instinctive rush slowed as he tried to synchronize his mental calendar with the sight before him. "It's not Saturday, is it?"

"Friday. We're taking the day off. The weekend, actually."

Bemused, he sat and pulled the cereal box to himself on automatic pilot. "Cool." He had a slight hangover, but even so, his mood improved with the news. "You have a plan, I'm guessing."

"San Francisco."

"Live the cliché?"

"Hmm," Jack said into his paper with what might have been agreement.

There was still some chilled toast on the table and Vaughn buttered a piece, musing. "I didn't like that hotel we stayed at last time. The rooms were small."

"Yes, that was a mistake. I've booked us a suite at the Clift."

He'd never heard of it, but knowing Jack, it'd be swank. "There's no other mission, is there?" he asked as the possibility struck him.

Jack looked over at him with mellow regard and smiled. "No."

The weather was nice, which turned out to be one of the least important factors of the weekend's success.

"That's--I like that," Vaughn said with breathless surprise when Jack dug his fingers in deeper and twisted them. It was amazing that he could speak. "You sure you've never done this?"

"Roll over," Jack said gently, ignoring the question, easing his fingers out. "On your side." When Vaughn obeyed, Jack settled the length of his body against his own and pushed both fingers in again, deeper this time.

"Jesus." Vaughn pushed his knee up, giving Jack's hand better access. It was getting really good, all the details of the afternoon converging: the light through the drapes, the knowledge that the phone wasn't going to ring and force them back to the office, the weird new ache of pleasure Jack was raising inside him. He lay in a relaxed splay of limbs and realized gradually that he didn't have to do anything but breathe and let Jack take care of things.

Though he was aware at every moment of lying naked in a hotel room with a male coworker on what was essentially business, the situation was blurring at the edges into something more personal. Which was the whole point, so he let it happen.

He was sober this time around. That made it better, but also more difficult. He was highly self-conscious of his body and what Jack was doing with it, and of Jack. They had both showered but were now working up a sweat. The anxiety of being stripped raw in front of someone else was worse because it was Jack. It would be unbearable if, months down the road, Jack smirked at him during a meeting, and Vaughn was forced to remember that he'd once been naked with the other man's slick fingers in him. He'd have to shoot the guy, and that would be hell on Sydney.

Vaughn grabbed a handful of three-hundred thread-count sheets and groaned with a sense of desperate want as Jack's fingers picked up a hard, sharp rhythm. "Stop," he said, almost panicking, and Jack did.

"Did I hurt you?" Jack sounded concerned.

"No, I just. I need to catch my breath." He didn't release his twist of sheets. He was glad he wasn't looking Jack in the face.

"You understand," Jack said, "that there's nothing we *have* to do."

"I know." He breathed deeply and relaxed his shoulders. "This is okay." He paused. "A woman I was seeing wanted to do this once, but she had fingernails, and...well, it wasn't pretty."

"Was she a stupid woman?"

Vaughn smiled at the disapproving judgment. "No. Scary smart. But attached to her fingernails."

"Should I start again?"

"Oh. Yeah. Sorry." It was funny, strange funny--he got the impression Jack wasn't a man who usually asked a lot of questions during sex--actually, that wasn't quite right. He got the impression Jack didn't often *need* to ask, because he knew just what to do, and how to do it, and for how long, even when he hadn't done it before. Under all that skill, he had talent. But it was difficult to completely trust him yet, especially when he was doing things to parts of Vaughn's body usually handled only by doctors.

The stroking pressure of Jack inside him started up again, making Vaughn squirm and rock needily in place. He liked how Jack's hand was wedged between his thighs, knuckles brushing him in incredible ways along the seam of his body. With a surge of comprehension--this was how it worked--he clamped down everywhere to hold that feeling in place and rocked harder until he was gasping.

"Easy." Jack drew his fingers out again.

"Fuck!" he complained. Or had that been a whine? That was just embarrassing. "What are you doing?"

"Putting on a condom," Jack said matter of factly.

"Oh." Ambivalence tumbled his thoughts around in circles. Yes yes, oh hell no, bad idea, good, good idea. Not all of him was thinking, though, and he pushed his knee up further in anticipation, a reflex he hadn't known his body was capable of.

"Relax." Jack shifted back against him, touched his hip, nudged a leg between his thighs.

"Easy for you to say."

"You'll have your turn."

"I will?" That put a new spin on things. Briefly caught up trying to picture this, he didn't remember to freak out when Jack's dick began working against him like pestle to mortar, the way Alice used to grind herbs when cooking, except more gently. And wow, he hadn't just had that train of thought, had he? He really wished he hadn't.

The light friction went on and on until Vaughn's thighs were trembling. "More," he finally rasped. It was maddeningly good, and Jack was so patient. Vaughn's hands were damp, creasing his pillow and sheet. "Please."

Jack pushed in and they both choked out low sounds at the same time and then he was in deeper, opening Vaughn up. "Push," Jack said.

"Me?" But he did and then cried out and did it again, harder. "Oh my god."

"Easy." Jack's hand clasped his hip, then slid around to hold his dick, stroking it in time to his thrusts.

Vaughn lost his words in swirls of disjointed vowels. He braced one arm against the bed and then his free hand, and shoved back. Jack gave a sharp, breathless cry and Vaughn wondered who the last person was to hear him make that sound. He hoped Jack liked what he was doing with his hips, because it felt fucking incredible from his side. He ground his ass back and arched and panted and drove forward into Jack's hand and it got better and better until he spilled with toe-curling spasms that didn't want to stop.

A minute later Jack finished, fingers digging hard into Vaughn's hip, breath warm against the back of his neck, warmer when his noises got louder. Vaughn shivered with aftershocks, still liking it.

Later, showered and dressed again, they wandered downstairs and out for dinner. They made a sincere effort to find pot roast and failed, and ended up somewhere overlooking the water, eating sea bass and scallops.

The rest of the weekend was pretty good too.

In the office on Monday, Vaughn felt rested and satisfied. The mission was back on track. Also, there'd been sex. Good sex. He couldn't find any angle from which this didn't work out well for both of them. He felt a little sheepish, knowing this was a complete turn-around. Sex had a way of doing that. Showing someone a good time had a way of doing that, especially when they were making a real effort to show you a good time in return.

Damn. He stared blankly at an insignificant e-mail in his inbox. He really did like Jack. Jack was an okay guy for a psychopath once you got past his defenses. In fact, he might not even be a psychopath. It was a disturbing realization.

"Hey," Weiss said, coming up to his desk. "You disappeared on Friday. We had a great meeting. Three hours. Did you know that 'homeland security' anagrams to 'Alice donut rhymes'? Also, 'clued rhino steamy'."

Vaughn nodded with a straight face full of regret. "Sorry I missed that."

"That's okay, I took notes. So where were you? Walk with me. I need caffeine. Non-government caffeine."

"Jack and I went to San Francisco."

They reached the elevators. Weiss didn't say anything until they were inside and moving. "What, work?"

"No. Just to--" He shrugged. "Relax."

"'Relax' is the universal code word for sex."

"It is not," Vaughn said, giving him a dry look.

"Oh, yeah. Along with 'cigar' and 'monkey'."

"You're insane." Vaughn laughed.

Weiss was looking at the floor with a half frown, hands in pockets, and didn't say anything right away, then glanced sidelong at him. "I thought you were insane, you know. All that stuff you told me about being with him. Just, wham, out of the blue. I really thought you might be brainwashed or that I'd have to stage an intervention."

"You're serious. You acted like--"

"I *know* what I acted like. I'm telling you now. I freaked a bit, man. Sydney had to talk me down."

Imagining that conversation made him wince at the painful absurdity of it all. He didn't look forward to the day when he'd have to confess the truth. "I'm sorry. You could have told me, you know."

"I didn't want to harsh your buzz unless I had to."

Vaughn hid a smile. "That's nice of you," he said, meaning it. "Thanks, Eric."

"De nada. I'm just glad it's working out." Despite his apparent sincerity, there was a smoothness to his face and speculative focus in his eyes that made Vaughn suddenly wonder what the drift of his conversation with Sydney had been. For all he knew, he and Weiss could be going at it façade to façade, friends playing the game with each other just because the agency said they had to. The possibility sucked, but for now he was stuck with not knowing.

***

"From monitoring Darien Frye's calls, we've learned he'll be meeting tomorrow in Paris with Keran Demarkian, another of the Authority's directors."

Making it casual, Vaughn glanced across the table at Jack as Dixon spoke, but Jack's face gave nothing away. No one other than Dixon knew that they were already under cover to eventually infiltrate Demarkian's organization. The mission, whatever it was, had to relate to that goal, even if it was only tangential.

"Sydney, Jack, and Vaughn--you'll be going to Paris. Your objective--"

"Wait," Sydney interrupted, frowning. "It's against policy for Michael to work with my father in the field."

People projected different levels of discomfort, Marshall and Weiss the most. Vaughn suspected that if the relationship had been real, he'd be thinking of Sydney right now as one of those prim girls in class who always had to be a stickler for the rules, and yet she was the farthest thing from that. He wondered if she just had an axe to grind, or if there were other motives at work. Whatever the case, the soap-opera tension in the room was thick.

"A policy against married agents working together exists," Dixon said. "After further discussion with the director, this has been waived for Vaughn and your father. It's a grey area."

Sydney's lips compressed and she gave her father a piercing look. "For the record, I don't think that's wise, sir," she said, turning her attention back to Dixon.

"Your concerns are noted." Dixon remained impassive. "To continue, your objective while in Paris is to shadow Frye to the meet and find out everything you can about a project called 'Drifter'."

"Drifter," Vaughn repeated. The name meant nothing to him.

Jack took over smoothly. "We don't know if it's a person, or plan--or even a new technology. But the keyword frequency in communications captured by ECHELON indicate it's very important to the Authority."

"You leave in two hours," Dixon said.

***

"What was that back there?" Vaughn said, cornering Sydney after the meeting. "Did you really have to undermine us in front of everyone?"

"It's better than going behind people's backs." A straight arrow from her posture to her honesty, Sydney was unrepentant and unintimidated, even though Vaughn was in her face.

He eased off. It was impossible to sustain a front of offense that was basically false. "I'm just saying that could have been handled better."

"You need to stay detached on this mission. You're already making it personal, Michael."

He blinked, trying to read her. Was she serious, or was she still unconvinced by the cover--his gut said it was the latter, but at this point he couldn't tell any more. "I'm not the one making this personal." He heard the words come out of his mouth as if someone else spoke them.

Sydney's whole face drew in on itself with incredulity. "You think *I'm* making this personal?"

"I think you like to embarrass your father." The knowledge clicked into place even though he'd never articulated it before. "You shouldn't do that to him."

"Oh my god." She stared at him and her eyes welled with tears in a single, long, terrible instant. "You really are sleeping with him."

A flush spread through his face and into his ears, and he began to speak, but had to swallow convulsively before he could manage it. "Sydney--"

She turned and strode away, her movements jagged as if emotion were flashing in lightning arcs through her muscles. Vaughn watched her go, knowing he couldn't run after her. His chest ached, and the bridge of his nose and sockets of his eyes flared with sympathetic pain. He couldn't cry in the corridor in the middle of a government agency. Sydney could, but he couldn't. He couldn't cry at all.
 
 
 
abbyleeabbylee on June 11th, 2005 05:29 am (UTC)
I know, I haven't had a chance to read this yet, but you totally made my night.
The Alpha Beta: JM-jeansdiluvian on June 11th, 2005 05:45 am (UTC)
both choked out low sounds at the same time

::slides off chair::
Anaxila / Babbles: alias jackvaughn by struttermsanaxila on June 11th, 2005 06:04 am (UTC)
I had no idea you'd be posting this tonight - yay! And yep, it's still hot the 5th time through.

And (::points to new icon::) look what you made me do. It's a sickness, I tell you. I need to go grab screenshots and make my own. You wouldn't believe how much time I had to spend scrolling through the icon communities to find an icon with Jack & Vaughn together. Or maybe you would. You're a trailblazer, you.

(::points to new default icon too::) My icon wants to make out with your icon.
Moral Whiplashbkwyrm on June 11th, 2005 06:05 am (UTC)
Oh, god, he's totally right about her too. The sex is hotter than hell and this line: Jack was an okay guy for a psychopath once you got past his defenses. made me laugh hard enough to scare the cat.
vi, miss vylit if you're nasty: alias vaughn smilingvylit on June 11th, 2005 06:19 am (UTC)
This has made my night.
julia_herejulia_here on June 11th, 2005 06:25 am (UTC)
Also, there'd been sex. Good sex. He couldn't find any angle from which this didn't work out well for both of them. He felt a little sheepish, knowing this was a complete turn-around. Sex had a way of doing that.

If I'd had time to load the icons Yin made today, this would have gotten the "Big Sexy Brain" one. You're so damned good at dealing with precisely the points that my own brain brings up when I'm supposed to be dealing with my own projects (or while I'm weeding, which is conducive to analytical reflection). Orgasms change the neurochemistry, true fact, and intimacy creates emotions which are difficult, after time, to differentiate from loving desire.

The process is being surely depicted here, in entirely convincing fashion.

Julia, floating a little from Vicodin, whee!
Fandom: karass or granfalloon. Discuss.sherrold on June 11th, 2005 06:30 am (UTC)
I don't know which I liked better --
the awesome guh-ness of the sex (is *too* a word!), or the beautiful pain of that final Sydney/Vaughn scene. Thank you for not making me choose, and giving them both.

(I love the idea that two guys with more overtly in common would have probably never had to have had sex to make this op work -- they would have been able to make friends and appear intimate in a more straightforward way; Jack and Vaughn (huh -- why is it always Jack and Vaughn to me, instead of Jack and Michael...?) have to get to friendship in a more roundabout (and hot) way.)

This is lovely. How'd you have time to watch Hot Zone and do this too?
Anna S.: agent-coopereliade on June 11th, 2005 06:40 am (UTC)
Re: I don't know which I liked better --
the awesome guh-ness of the sex (is *too* a word!), or the beautiful pain of that final Sydney/Vaughn scene. Thank you for not making me choose, and giving them both.

Yay! :) I had to change the last Syd/V scene a tiny bit--I realized that it hinged on something entirely backwards and wrong. Gah. I hate when I do that *after* posting.

Jack and Vaughn (huh -- why is it always Jack and Vaughn to me, instead of Jack and Michael...?)

I know, I think that often when I'm writing. *g* And didn't I mention as we were watching that Syd called Michael "Vaughn" during his--well, to avoid spoilers in unwarned comments, during that *most* intimate moment on the plane when he gave her the thing and asked her that thing. *eye roll* Which is pretty obvious now that I put it out there.

This is lovely. How'd you have time to watch Hot Zone and do this too?

Um...skipped work. *cringe*
Trepkos: Not a slut by Catvampcrazinestrepkos on June 11th, 2005 09:46 am (UTC)
"he didn't have to do anything but breathe and let Jack take care of things."

Hmm. Nice feeling.

""You'll have your turn."

"I will?" That put a new spin on things."

Aw! Bless 'im! Both of 'em.

""I think you like to embarrass your father." The knowledge clicked into place even though he'd never articulated it before. "You shouldn't do that to him.""

Go Vaughn! Again, I don't watch the show but I'm sure this is true.
Good for him for defending Jack and calling her on it!
Humairahumaira_k on June 11th, 2005 09:58 am (UTC)
Serves her right! Sydney shouldn't be mean to Jack or Vaughn and what a startling realisation for Vaughn! *Huggles Vaughn* There There, you can cry here dear...
WesleysGirlwesleysgirl on June 11th, 2005 12:13 pm (UTC)
Gah.

*Is small whimpering puddle on floor*

"Oh, yeah. Along with 'cigar' and 'monkey'."

"You're insane." Vaughn laughed.


And this was great. :-)
another_mary on June 11th, 2005 01:40 pm (UTC)
I'm loving these. In themselves, but particularly reading them together with your other J/V stories - I love the way in which the characters are entirely recognisable but different, because of the different plot circumstances you put them in. I don't watch the show, so your Jack and Vaughn are like original characters to me, and I'm really intrigued by the differences (the J/V interaction - jokes, awkwardness etc, not to mention The Sex - but also the way in which the other characters play off it) in the different stories. It's one advantage of fanfic over canon, I think - once canon chooses a direction for a character it has to stick with it and the possibilities get limited. Whereas fanfic writers can come back again and again and reshape the characters and their relationships completely every time, as they please, without actually compromising characterisation... it's so cool! And you do it so well! *giddy*


(Deleted comment)
flaming museflaming_muse on June 11th, 2005 02:33 pm (UTC)
Excuse me.

Eeeeeeeeeee! *beams*

That's all.
Dlastadlasta on June 11th, 2005 02:34 pm (UTC)
This is what porn with plot should be. :)

Ps. You're making me like Vaughn! *Evil!*
cindershadow on June 11th, 2005 02:56 pm (UTC)
They made a sincere effort to find pot roast and failed . . .

That was the moment I understood how truly, truly hot and involving the sex had been, because I started laughing in relief/release, and couldn't stop.

And then the moment with Weiss, and the great scene with Sydney.

You are a genius at pacing and mood and character and . . . you don't know what you are doing to me. The reaction I get each time I see another piece of your writing go up is just--indescribable. "Thanks" is too weak.
wyoluvrwyoluvr on June 11th, 2005 03:37 pm (UTC)
i like the fact that it's this utterly normal remark that convinces (appears to anyway) Sydney that Jack and Vaughn are sleeping together. 'cause right there, Vaughn's not *trying* to be under cover, he's just defending Jack.

oh, sex! sex! hot sex! i think Vaughn should work Jack over. licking! biting! sweaty sex, yay!

ahem.
Pamgoosegirl9 on June 11th, 2005 04:20 pm (UTC)
I can't believe I read slash, and it was great. I don't *like* slash.
E. Stardustemstardust on June 11th, 2005 09:10 pm (UTC)
Squee! I've been offline since yesterday midday and now I have two lovely prizes waiting on my flist. These are great. The sex is great - I have no idea how you got them there, but I am grateful for it!
tafkarfanfictafkarfanfic on June 11th, 2005 10:06 pm (UTC)
It would be unbearable if, months down the road, Jack smirked at him during a meeting, and Vaughn was forced to remember that he'd once been naked with the other man's slick fingers in him. He'd have to shoot the guy, and that would be hell on Sydney.

I laughed aloud, and then read this to my other half.

Jack was an okay guy for a psychopath once you got past his defenses.

This too.

I'm very, very much enjoying this.
kittygoslingp on June 12th, 2005 02:34 am (UTC)
I have had a soft spot for Jack for the longest time (mostly since a scene where he totally anihalated some guys in a cinema)and I've always felt that Vaughan was, in some ways, too nice and too normal for Sydney; it almost felt as though she'd end up having to protect him or something because let's face it, she's out of his league. The fact that it would be hard to imagine anyone imagining that, in the normal way of things, they should at least try to take on the role of protector in a relationship with Jack, means that and I can't articulate why, I just don't see the roles being so strained by a Jack/Vaughan pairing. I don't think anything I just said made any sense but thank you, thank you, this series is so amazing and I am going now to read it all over again from the beginning.
Herself_nycherself_nyc on June 16th, 2005 02:41 am (UTC)
Oh man. The complexities, the insight into character and people's motivations, the push-pull, it's just so damn beautiful.
karaokegal: daddybarbiekaraokegal on December 14th, 2007 05:55 pm (UTC)
Whoah! Just, whoah, but not just whoah, because I'm utterly fascinated with how you're constructing this in terms of the physical and emotional progression that Vaughn in making. I love how you're keeping it in his POV so that Jack is a mystery to us as well as to him. I thought it was a little abrubt to go from the line about the weekend being a success to the fingers up the ass without even a transition marker and that I might have lost a page or missed something, but on multiple readings, it really does work to throw us into purely physical part that Michael is going through and how much he's getting into it.

The last section was actually touching and I love the fact that you're not eradicating the existing relationship between Vaughn and Syd to make Jack/Vaughn happen.

One of my beefs with a very long slash story that shall remain nameless is the character assassination of Sydney Bristow that happened along the way. I think your Syd is spot on and I'm genuinely curious to see how that part of the story will develop as well.