Ray Doyle took another long drink from the nearly empty glass. He noticed with something like amusement that his hand was shaking; small tremors racking his body, after-shocks of the ripping hurt tearing his soul. A quick swallow emptied the glass for the fourth time. Everything hurt so much and despite the alcohol haze, his tears started again. An anguished wail escaped his clenched jaw as he drew his knees up; pressing them tight against his chest as he sat propped against the bedstead. Rain had started to beat down against the windows, cold and hurtful. For one crazy moment, he couldn't bear the thought of his lover laying alone in the dark earth unprotected from the rain. He ran his hands over his face fighting the almost overwhelming desire to go to the cemetery and dig until he found the only person he had ever really loved. To take him from the hateful earth and bring him back into safety and warmth.

It was too soon to say goodbye. Should have stayed with him, gone with the ambulance. Even if he were already dead, at least there would have been time to look at the still features, touch the still warm flesh. The last chance. It seemed funny now that he had ever cared what anyone would think if they had known. Cowley, the other agents. He was past all caring about that now. This morning, he had stood by the casket and placed his hand where he imaged his lover's face would be. He had imagined the features, the dark hair, expressive eyes, fair skin. He stood and remembered until Cowley had led him away.

If anyone understood, it was Cowley. Cowley had seen beyond the surface of the cold, hard killer to the man beneath and had given him a chance with the Squad. Cowley had trusted him. But Cowley had not loved him. Only Ray had done that. And if that love had not been returned, it was not for lack of desire. Sometimes, after making love, Ray had seen hesitant confusion in those eyes. And Ray had just held him tighter; knowing that someday those eyes would be filled with trust and love. It would just take some time to repair all the hurt that had come before.

But, of course, there had been no time.

The door buzzer was ringing. He knew it was probably someone with the Squad, and after his performance at the funeral, if he didn't answer they were likely to call security services to come over and unbolt the door. He bashed the intercom button, "Yeah?"

"Its me."

"Go away, don't want company." He shut the intercom off.

The buzzer started again. "I said sod off."

"Listen, Doyle. The old man is worried, sent me over to have a look at you. Let me in."

Resigned, Ray pushed the entry button, unlatched the door and then made off to find the scotch.

He heard the door close and the locks reset, "Where are you mate?"

"In here. Fancy a drink?"

The bedroom was dark. Ray had crawled back into the comfort and forgetfulness of the blankets.

Unsure, his partner moved to the bed and then sat down. "I'm sorry."

"You hated him." The tone was angry, bitter.

"No, never that." He bit his lower lip, remembering the things he had said just hours before Tommy had died. "I . . . I didn't understand about you two."

Doyle snorted, "Won't wash. Even if you've forgotten what happened at the Huntington job, I haven't."

Bodie had not forgotten. It had been a security job. CI5 agents guarding an estate at which an international conference was taking place. They had been there three days and Bodie had gone to Ray's room to ask him if he wanted to grab some lunch. The image of what he had found when he'd unlocked the door was burned into his memory. Ray had lain beneath McKay, head thrown back, face alight with a look of absolute pleasure.

Almost immediately, the pair had registered his intrusion, Doyle bringing his weapon from under the pillow and aiming whilst McKay had done the same with a gun that had appeared from nowhere. For a moment, McKay looked like he was going to pull the trigger. For a moment, Bodie had wished that he had drawn his own weapon and could return the favor. The anger he felt at the idea of McKay touching his partner had pushed away all other emotion.

Ray had lowered his gun and with a degree of self-possession that was amazing under the circumstances, had given Bodie an ice-cold look and ordered, "Forget it Bodie."

They had never spoken of it.

Bodie tried again, "What I mean was, I thought it was just sex . . . I didn't know you loved him."

Ray whirled around on the bed, "What do you know about it?"

Bodie looked down at his normally strong, capable partner who had been brought to such utter ruin and knew with an aching certainty that if he lived to be a thousand, no one would ever love him the way Ray had loved Tommy. The possessive jealousy he felt at the thought of Tommy fucking Ray was nothing compared to the envy he now felt upon realizing the extent of Ray's love.

"You're right Ray. I don't know anything about it." He paused, needing to say something more. "Except, in some ways, I think Tommy was lucky."

Ray said nothing and for a while they sat and listened to the rain. It was too soon to talk, maybe it always would be.

-- THE END --

Circuit Archive Logo Archive Home