Blind Date


Bodie yawned and stretched, and attempted to turn over without falling off the sofa. The trouble was that Doyle's settee hadn't been designed for sleeping on -- unless you were four feet nothing, skinny as a rake, and a masochist to boot. Bodie would openly admit that he was none of those things.

The alternatives were less than appealing; he could sleep on the floor, and run the risk of having Doyle trip over him in the morning -- that would go down like a lead balloon. Or he could try to drive home, but given the amount of alcohol still swirling about his body, that option was a very bad idea.

He could ask Doyle if he could share the bed. It was certainly large enough -- but Bodie shied away from THAT solution like a frightened horse, because, if he once got into that bed, he would end up seducing his partner, and in the morning he would regret it, Ray would remember and be disgusted, and would ask to be re-teamed, or would resign altogether...And the thought of losing Doyle terrified him so much, that he was willing to hide his feelings, making do with the little of Doyle's life he did share at work or, as now, the aftermath of a pleasantly boozy night together. The one good thing was that Doyle seemed to enjoy his company socially as well as at work...

So Bodie opted for his final choice: staying awake. It wouldn't be the first. time he'd spent a sleepless night, and judging from his recent past, it probably wouldn't be the last.

He sat up, wrapped the blanket around himself and went to turn on the lamp that stood in the corner of the room. The soft glow made a pool of gentle light over the armchair, so he picked up the local newspaper and went to sit there. He started at the sports page and worked his way forward, through the large commercial advertisements to the small ads, which, to his mind, made more entertaining reading.

It was the personal column that attracted his attention, and he chuckled ruefully. Maybe he should write in -- does anybody want to love me, and look after me? How would he describe himself? Orphaned, lonely, and desperately in love with his partner -- the beautiful, mercurial, HETEROSEXUAL Ray Doyle... Not much to offer anyone, he thought gloomily. He ran his eye down the entries.

That was when he saw it. He stopped, blinked, and read it again, wondering if the light, or the alcohol, was playing tricks on him.

'Male, no spring chicken, but not quite over the hill seeks same for exciting experience together. Interested in all things relating to life, and existence in general. Any takers?'

There was a box number at the foot of the paragraph, and Bodie smiled. There was something a little -- wistful -- about the advert, despite the humorous wording, and it struck a chord in Bodie. Someone else out there was just as alone, and looking for a friend to share with...

Bodie went over to Doyle's desk, got out the writing paper and an envelope, and took them to the armchair. Then he stopped. He had no idea how to reply to this guy. What if he wanted more than just an 'exciting experience'? It might get awkward...But on the other hand, it might be very good...So Bodie shrugged, and scribbled a hasty note.

'To the old rooster with the mountain fetish. I'm interested. Engine sound, bodywork in immaculate nick, and willing to go places for exciting experiences. If I'm what you're looking for, let's meet at O'Malley's Bar, on Friday at seven.'

He slipped the single sheet into the envelope, addressed it neatly, filched a stamp, and then because it was two o'clock in the morning, and he was still feeling strangely reckless, he fished the keys out of Doyle's pocket, and went down to the corner to post it.

The night air was interacting with the alcohol in his bloodstream. Bodie managed to crawl back up to Doyle's flat and let himself in as quietly as he could, at the second attempt. He locked up behind him, and collapsed in the hallway, the blanket still draped around him.

Bodie was on edge all week. He felt a little guilty at meeting another man, as if he were going behind Doyle's back; but if he couldn't get what he so desperately wanted from his partner, he had no other choice, and at least this guy had a sense of humour!

They were working over-time on Friday, and Bodie was worried. Normally, he and Doyle would knock off for a drink together to get them in the mood for the weekend. how the heck did he tell Doyle that he wasn't going to the pub after work?

It was actually Doyle who solved the problem for him.

"Bodie, would you mind if I drop you at your place, only something came up, and I can't make it to the pub tonight."

"Serious?" Bodie was concerned.

Doyle shook his head. "Don't know. Might be."

"Ray, if you need back-up..."

"No," Doyle smiled. "I can look after myself. Thanks for the offer, though."

"Anytime, mate," Bodie grinned in reply. "That's what friends are for."

"You -- don't mind -- about tonight?" Doyle almost sounded hurt.

"I'll forgive you this once," Bodie allowed magnanimously. "As a matter of fact, I was going out later myself."

"Oh," said Doyle, nonchalantly. "That's fine then."

Bodie got to the bar with ten minutes to spare. He bought himself a pint, and settled into a corner booth, where he could watch the entrance. He was prepared for a long wait. He scrutinised every man who came through the doors, but none of them had the look of anticipation he was hoping for. By five past seven, Bodie was getting strange looks in return, and having serious doubts about the whole affair.

Christ, he thought, the barman looks ready to bounce me out. What if he does? What if there's anyone else from the Squad in here? What if the old rooster turns up and I was seen? Cowley would have a field day!

Bodie took another tiny sip from his pint and almost choked when the door opened as he swallowed. His worst fears had been realised -- Doyle was heading straight for the bar. Bodie instinctively ducked his head. Tonight, of all nights!

Doyle was scanning the room, obviously looking for someone...He would automatically go to a position which afforded him the maximum field of vision with the maximum cover -- except that Bodie had already beaten him to it. Silently, Bodie prepared himself for the encounter, willing himself not to be sick.

"Bodie, hello." Doyle sounded nervous. "What are you doing here?"

"Waiting for a friend." Bodie smiled up at him, equally tense but hiding it better.

"Mind if I wait with you? I'm -- supposed to be meeting someone." He sat, "I was late. They may've already gone..."

"Important?" asked Bodie.

"Could be." Doyle was being evasive. "Do I know this friend?"

"Doubt it," Bodie replied quickly. "I'll give him until eight, and then I'm off home. Unless," he raised an enquiring eyebrow, "you want me to wait with you?"

"No. If this bloke doesn't turn up, I'll go back with you -- if you want me to..."

Oh, I want you to, Ray, thought Bodie desperately, but tonight, if I go home with you, I may not be able to keep my hands off ...They sat together, and watched, and sipped their beer.

Half past seven came, and went. There was still no sign of him. Bodie resigned himself to his fate, and finished his pint. Doyle still had a half left.

"Do you want another one?" Bodie offered.

"What?" Doyle was obviously miles away. "Oh, no thanks."

"In that case, we can grab a six-pack on the way home," Bodie suggested, "or a bottle of something stronger. What d'you fancy?"

"Anything," replied Doyle absent-mindedly. "Anything you choose."

Bodie trawled off to the bar, and returned with a half. Doyle looked so dispirited that Bodie wanted to hug him, just to make him smile. Instead, he sat down in silence and resumed his vigil. At five to eight, he got up to go to the loo, and left his partner alone at the table, still cradling his half-pint.

Bodie berated himself for a fool; of course that bloke wouldn't turn up. It was stupid to think that anyone would -- Bodie certainly wouldn't if he'd received a letter like that...well, alright, maybe he would, but if he'd seen his would-be friend waiting with someone else...With a sigh, Bodie washed his hands and went back to the lounge.

There was someone standing by the table, talking to Doyle. Bodie stomped by the bar, feeling unaccountably cheated: Ray's contact had obviously arrived, and he was speaking very earnestly to his partner, gesturing towards the door. Bodie switched his attention to Doyle: he looked annoyed -- something must have gone wrong, and in their job, that usually meant trouble. Sweeping aside all personal feelings, Bodie went to join his partner.

"...not interested," Doyle stated to the man who loomed over him. "Sod off!"

"Come on, you know you'd like to..." the man's voice trailed off as Bodie reached them, and he glared at the dark-haired agent. "Push off, mate, this one's spoken for!"

"I know." Bodie's smile was sweet and cold. "He giving you trouble, Ray?"

"Nothing I can't handle," Doyle replied tartly. "Ready to go?" He stood, and, as an afterthought, picked up his remaining half-pint, handing it to his would-be suitor. "That's all you're getting out of me, mate!"

Bodie waited until Doyle was well clear before following him, leaving the bustle of the bar for the comparative quiet of the street. Doyle was leaning against a streetlamp, hands thrust into the pockets of his jeans.

"Did you drive across?"

Doyle shook his head. "Taxi."

"Fancy a walk?"

"Don't mind," Doyle shrugged. He fell into step beside Bodie.

"I -- er -- take it he wasn't who you were waiting for," he began. "what did he want?"

"Can't you guess?" asked Doyle bitterly.

Bodie could, but the thought of anyone trying to pick up his partner casually was ludicrous -- not that he didn't look good enough to eat at the moment, with his spray-on jeans, and shirt half-open to give a tantalising glimpse of his lightly furred chest.

"You've got to admit, you were asking for it, flaunting it like that!"

"They happened to be the only things to hand," Doyle snapped, annoyed at being found out -- and by Bodie, of all people.'

Bodie raised his hands pacifying. "Alright, don't bite my head off. I was stood up this evening, too, and I'm not exactly happy about it."

"Ah, it was my own fault, for being late. Should've been there for seven," explained Doyle. "Should've sussed it was a set-up. I mean, who ever bloody well uses a bar like O'Malley's as a meeting place?"

"We do," grinned Bodie, punching him lightly on the shoulder. "Now, are we going to find an off-license, or are we going to spend the rest of this evening agonising over a couple of time-wasters?"

"Off-license," replied Doyle. "As long as you're buying."

"You paying for the taxi?"

Doyle nodded.

"Okay," Bodie agreed.

They tumbled out of the cab, laden with several carrier bags containing an assortment of bottles: Doyle had decided to replenish his stock, and he and Bodie had spent a cheerful half-hour choosing the next month's supply.

It was nearly ten when they arrived at Doyle's flat, having stopped en route for refreshment, and they were pleasantly merry. Doyle let them in, and Bodie brought up the bags.

He made it as far as the lounge, where he collapsed on the sofa, while Doyle used the bathroom.

"Want me to fix you a drink?" Bodie asked.

"Yeah, whatever you want, and I'll have the same."

Bodie found the whisky, and broke it open, pouring generously. Doyle emerged and slouched in against the doorway. Bodie swallowed the lump in his throat: Christ, but the man was beautiful -- a dream in denim -- and how Bodie ached to touch him, to take him...He didn't need a faceless stranger with a weird sense of humour: what he wanted was standing before him, clad in blue jeans and a cotton shirt, with an odd expression on his face.


"Huh? Oh," he recovered, and flashed a disarming grin, holding out Doyle's glass. "Was miles away."

"Penny for 'em?" Doyle stepped forward.

"Was just thinking tonight was NOT an exciting experience, was it?"

"WHAT?" Doyle took the drink from Bodie's hand and went a little pale. "What did you say?"

"I said," Bodie repeated, "tonight was not --" Something clicked then, and Bodie took the biggest risk of his life. "I was just thinking, your body-work's in immaculate nick."

Doyle was staring down at him, and swallowed noisily. "Engine's sound, too," he whispered hoarsely. "Bodie?"

Bodie's eyes widened in disbelief.

"The old rooster with the mountain fetish..."

Doyle closed his eyes, suddenly feeling very ill. Next moment, he found himself on the couch, right beside his bewildered partner, who had one arm round his shoulders and was steadying the whisky glass with the other hand.

"Why'd you do it, Ray?" Bodie was amused, amazed and a little hurt at the same time: Doyle couldn't have known he would answer that advert. Doyle shook his head.

"Seems so -- stupid now," he murmured miserably. "Let it go, Bodie." Bodie held him tighter.

"Tell me. If I've made a charlie of myself, I'd like to know why." He took Doyle's whisky glass, set it on the floor, and cupped Doyle's chin, tipping his face towards him. "Tell me."

"I can't..."

That decided Bodie: he would have to make the first move.

"I answered that advert because I wanted something I couldn't get from you. I wanted to love you, Ray..." he stopped. He couldn't go on: he had already committed professional suicide by saying that much. Come Monday morning, Cowley would have him in, and he would be reassigned, or out of the Squad. Either way, he would never see Doyle again.

"You were -- going to go with -- a stranger?" Doyle found his voice at last. "You would've gone home with someone else?"

"I might have gone out with them, but I couldn't go home. I know who I'd've been thinking of the whole time..."

"You want me -- want to come to bed with me?" Doyle was trying to read Bodie's expression.

"Yes," said Bodie. Oh, damn, he may as well know the rest. "I love you. I want to make love to you. I couldn't --"

Doyle had moved fast, had his arms around Bodie like a boa constrictor, and had flattened his partner onto the settee. He pressed frantic lips to Bodie's mouth, his face, every bit of Bodie-skin he could find.

Bodie found himself pulling his frenetic mate closer, revelling in the sensations of Doyle writhing sensuously on top of him.

" -- want to do it to you -- so long -- wanted -- loving you, driving me crazy -- need you -- got to have you, Bodie! Bodie!" Doyle was gasping for air as Bodie daringly slipped one hand over the tiny behind and clung on.

"Bodie." Doyle looked up, his eyes shining, face aglow. "Do you want to --with me now?"

"In case you hadn't noticed," Bodie chuckled drily, "I've wanted to since you grabbed me. Ooh." he groaned as he eased his back. "You'll have to get a bigger sofa, if you want me to do this more often."

"There's a bed next door," Doyle pointed out hopefully.

Did that mean what Bodie prayed it did?

"Is that an invitation? Is this what you want?" he needed to be sure.

Doyle slipped to the floor and watched Bodie's face as he undid his jeans, lowering the zip carefully over the bulge. His penis sprang free, hard and hot.

"I want --" panted Doyle. "I want to do it, with you. Right now."

Bodie reached for his own fly, to find that nimble fingers were already Busy there, easing him clear of restricting material. Bodie kicked off his shoes, and peeled of his slacks and briefs. Doyle's mouth descended, lips delicately brushing burning flesh, paying homage to the beauty of the man.

"Bodie, can I suck it? It's so --" Doyle's eyes were bright, enthralled as he was by his half-naked partner.

"Anything, Ray. Anything you want. Can I suck you?"

Doyle nodded. "We'd better go to bed, then we can do it properly." He struggled to his feet, and shed trainers and jeans quickly. Then he reached down to pull Bodie to his feet, and they took turns at helping each other to strip. When they were finally both naked, Bodie brushed the back of one hand against Doyle's misshapen cheek.

"Beautiful old rooster," he sighed, touching his other hand to Doyle's balls. "Cock-a-doodle-do?"

Doyle giggled breathily. "You willing to go that far?"

"All the way with you, Ray," Bodie nodded.

Doyle took hold of the hand that rested against his face.

"Come on," he whispered. "There's a place I know, not a million miles from here..."

Bodie woke, warm and relaxed beneath a heavy blanket that looked, and smelt, and felt suspiciously like his partner. He heaved a contented sigh, and grinned up at the ceiling. No better way to wake than under his lover, he decided.

The curly head on his chest stirred, a tiny gust of moist breath across hot skin, and two huge blue-green eyes blinking up at him.

"Hello," Doyle greeted him a little uncertainly.

Bodie smiled sweetly in reply. "Hello?"

"Er, Bodie -- um --" Doyle shifted a little. "Did we do what I thought I dreamed we did?" He wanted to be certain.


"And this isn't just a one-night stand?"


"Are you sure? I mean, you weren't just humouring me last night, were you?"

"No, Ray, it's real. I love you."

Doyle sighed with relief. "That's okay, then."

"I'd better give you fair warning, though," Bodie told him, "what's mine I keep, and I don't share."

"I'll take the advert out of the paper today," promised Doyle. "Apart from that, is there anything you want to do this weekend?"

Bodie couldn't resist it. "Yes, there is."

Doyle eyed him suspiciously; Bodie's grin should have warned him.


Laughing, Doyle let him.

-- THE END --
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