Dark of the Moon


"Time, gentlemen."

Bodie gazed blearily at the bartender. 'Closing time already?' He finished his drink and got to his feet. The room tilted alarmingly as he did so and he hurriedly grabbed hold of his chair to steady himself. 'Def'nitely had too much to drink. Trouble is, not really interested in birds, lately. Not since Ray 'n' I've been lovers, any- way. 'N' when he goes off on these mysterious monthly trips of his, I get bored. 'S no fun doin' things on m'own, now. 'N' no one had any time fer poor Bodie to- night.'

Bodie left the pub walking very cautiously as the ground had an alarming tendency to jump up at him if he didn't keep an eye on it. He found his car in the car park, fumbled the key into the lock, got in the driver's seat and sat staring at the wheel. 'Bloody hell. 'Not in any shape to drive, t'night, am I? Cowley'll do his nut if I get done fer drunk driving. Taxi. Tha's what I need.' He dug into his pocket and pulled out a handful of change and a few crumpled notes, examining them anxiously in the light from a near-by street lamp. 'Damn. Not 'nough t'get to my place.' He counted the money again. 'Might just get to Ray's, though. Got his key. What more d'I need?'

He got out of the car and locked it, then proceeded to the street to hail a cab, diligently clutching his money. When one finally pulled over, he crawled in and gave Ray's address, then sank back against the cushions thankfully and closed his eyes.

'Where 'n hell does Ray go, anyway? Reg'lar as clock- work, right from the b'ginnin', he's disappeared for three days each month 'n' not a word t'anyone--not even me. Cowley must know where he goes, but he's not sayin', either. If Ray were a woman, y' could blame it on the wrong time o'the month, but he's definitely got the wrong plum- bin' fer that.' He contemplated his partner's body in de- tail for a short while. 'Didn't bother me a lot at first, but hell, even 'fore we became lovers the little sod'd wormed his way inta my feelings and now ... well ... any- way, I'm curious. Where does he go?' He pondered the question until he reached Ray's flat, with no better results than he'd ever had before.

Upon arrival, he painstakingly climbed out and poured the coins into the driver's hand, placing the notes on top and pat- ting them down care-fully. "Keep th'shange," he slurred.

He somehow got himself up the stairs and into Ray's flat, where he collapsed an the settee. K'strange, the lights bein' on. Ray must've forgot turn 'em off. Not like 'im, that.' He puzzled over the discrepancy for a while, furrowing his brow in concentration. Finally he hit upon a possible solution. 'Ah! Timer. That's it. He has them on a timer when he's gone.'

Thankful to have solved the problem, he put his head back and relaxed. It was quite warm after the cold night air, so he pulled off his jacket and tossed it aside. He lay there for a while waiting for the world to settle down, then decided that what he needed was a hair of the dog that bit him. He'd poured the drink and sat back down an the sofa when he heard a sound coming from the bedroom.

"Ray?" There was no answer. 'Nah, couldn't be. He's not home. Anyway, didn' soun' like Ray. Not too sure what it did soun' like. Better go see what it is.' He put his drink down on the coffee table and went into the bed- room.

He turned on the light and looked around, but saw nothing. He was just about to return to the lounge when he heard the sound again. It came from the cupboard. The Cupboard door was partly open. He went over and was in the process of opening it further when something ran past him into the room.

"Bloody hell!" He jumped back, startled, and looked around. There, in the middle of the room, was a very round, white cat, industriously washing the base of its tail. 'Oh, it's just a ... cat?! But ... Doyle doesn't have a cat. What in hell ... ?'

He started to close the closet door, then saw one of Ray's jumpers on the floor. He reached down to pick it up and it moved. 'What?' Bodie hesitated. "Oh. It's a female cat. Bet she's got kittens. Yeah, tha's it.'

He picked up the jumper and stared, horrified--shook his head, blinked his eyes, and stared again. 'No. I don't b'lieve it. 'Ve had too much t'drink and now 'm seein' things. Little pink Doyles. Christ. Must've had more ev'n than I thought. Better be careful or I'll end up in Ross' office on the couch.'

"No," he said to the apparition. "I don't b'lieve in you. You're not there." And he shut the door firmly and turned to leave the room.

The little Doyle strode forward in the dark, feeling for the door; then, when he found it, kicked it several times as hard as he could. 'Be damned if I'm gonna spend the night in here!'

"Bodie!" he shouted, his voice very high-pitched be- cause of his size. "Bodie! Get the hell back here and open this door! Bodie!"

Bodie, an the other side of the door, shook his head. 'Hearin' things as well. 'M really 'n bad shape.' He tried to ignore it, but the noise continued. 'Door's rattlin',' he rationalized. 'That's what's causing it. I'll open the door and it'll stop.' He did so, then walked over and rested on the bed, closing his eyes, trying to put the whole incident out of his mind.

After a while, however, his curiosity got the better of him. He sat up and looked around. No cat. No miniature Doyle. Everything was perfectly normal. Feeling better,, he decided to go make a cup of coffee. He measured it out while the water boiled, then added cream and sugar and took it back to the lounge to drink.

When he walked through the door, he stopped short. There was the cat, curled up in the middle of the rug. All right, there could be a logical reason for Ray to have a cat. He'd ask him when he got back. He went over to sit on the settee and stopped again, this time almost spilling his coffee.

The miniature Doyle was sitting cross-legged on the coffee table dressed rather like Robin Hood, though with- out the hat. As Bodie watched, he picked up a plastic thimble from beside him, dipped it into the glass of scotch Bodie'd left on the table earlier, and took a sip from it, balancing it with both hands.

"Oh, sit down before you fall down," Ray said, in an exasperatedly indulgent tone when Bodie showed no sign of ever moving again.

Bodie did as he was told, then closed his eyes, still refusing to believe what he was seeing. Unfortunately, when he reopened them, the apparition was still there. He took a large swallow of coffee, then put the mug down with a thud. The coffee had made no difference to what he was seeing except that the mannikin was now on his feet, looking at him.

Reaching forward, Bodie poked at it with a finger, expecting his hand to go right through it. Instead, there was a small "Ooof!" and it sat down on the table with a thump, nearly knocking over Bodie's drink.

"Bodie!" came the protest. "What did You want t'go and do that for?" Standing up and brushing himself off, Ray strode forward to the edge of the table and stood, hands on hips, glaring at Bodie.

Finally compelled to believe in what he was seeing and hearing, since he had felt it as well, Bodie managed to croak out, "Ray, ish that really you?"

"'Course it's me. Who in hell else would it be, eh?" Ray squeaked, annoyed both at Bodie's actions and at being caught. "Why couldn't you stay away for just one more day? Was that too much to ask?"

"But ... whash happened? Why are you only a foot tall?" He couldn't believe he was having this conversation.

Ray sighed. He really hadn't wanted any of this to come out, but guessed that was too much to hope for. Especially since they'd become lovers. He was trying desperately to think of a way to salvage the situation, now that Bodie had stumbled upon him. 'He's pretty drunk ... Maybe if I can keep him that way, tomorrow I can convince him it was all a dream.'

"It's a long story. Might as well make yourself comfortable. Here, let me top up your coffee for you." He hurriedly splashed a couple of thimblefuls of whisky into the coffee, then hopped over onto the settee and perched on the arm.

Bodie picked up his mug, leaned against the back of the settee and put his feet up. "Okay, I'm comi'table. Tell me."

"Well ... the main thing you need to know is, I'm an elf."

"An elf?" said Bodie, blankly. "Ash in fairy talesh?"

"More or less," agreed Doyle. "See?" He pushed his hair back from his ears, and Bodie could see that the ears came to tiny points.

"But..." Bodie couldn't quite take it all in. "I've kisshed your earsh and they've alwaysh been perfec'ly normal."

"Sure, I make 'em that way. Don't want people thinkin' I'm some Trekkie who's had plastic surgery if they happen to get a glimpse of my ears, now, do 1?"

"No." It made sense in a weird sort of way, Bodie decided.

"Anyway, my eyes are a dead giveaway. I can't do anything about them. You've even mentioned the way they slant oddly."

"True." Bodie always noticed his eyes, but Ray usually brushed any comment aside, so Bodie had come to accept them. "But your shize ... ?"

"Yes, well, that's because it's the dark of the moon."

"Dark of the moon?"

"You know! The three nights of the month when You can't see the moon because it doesn't reflect any sun- light." He was getting very impatient with Bodie, who didn't seem to be taking any of this in very fast. Even if he was pie-eyed, he should be able to assimilate facts quicker than this.

"Yeah. Okay. Sho what doesh that have t'do with your shize?"

"Well, it's a bit complicated. Y'see, first, I'm a sylvan elf. That means I can be out in the daylight, un- like some other elves who can only be Out in the dusk or dawn or at night. But more than that, my magic comes from the sunlight." He leaned forward, trying to make it all perfectly clear.

"Magic?" Bodie was losing what little grasp he had on this conversation.

"Yes, magic. What's the matter with You, Bodie? All elves have magic, by definition. I'm an elf, therefore I have magic. Simple logic." He frowned, then continued. "Now, pay attention. Y'see, I'm really four-five ..."

"A'coursh you are. 'Ave been 's long's I've known y'."

"No," Doyle shook his head agitatedly, "my height. I'm four-five."

"What're ya talk-..in' about Ray. You're five-ten."

"Would y'just listen for a minute? I'm four feet- five inches tall. I know You think I'm five-ten, but that's because I use my magic to increase my height. After all, I could hardly be in C.1.5 if I were only four-and-a-half feet high, now could I?"

"True, but..."

Doyle didn't give him a chance to go on. "Anyway, I'm okay at night, usually, because moonlight is reflected sunlight. So even though it's not as strong, I can continue on-going magic. I just can't initiate new magic. It's only during the dark of the moon, when there's not even reflected sunlight, that I have trouble. Then, it kind of rebounds and I shrink down to twelve inches." He stopped, waiting for Bodie to comment, but his partner just sat there, staring at him, trying to visualize him stretching and shrinking as if he were made of plasticene.

"Why twelve inches?" Bodie seemed to be stuck on that one point.

"I just told you! Weren't you even listening?!" Doyle never did have too firm a grip on his temper and now he came very close to losing it. He stalked forward and shook his small fist in Bodie's face, tempted to pop him one on the nose.

Bodie batted at him ineffectually, as Ray was much to close for him to focus on at this point. "Yesh, I listened!" Bodie could lose his temper, too. "But why twelve inches? Why not fifteen? Or twenty?"

Ray calmed down a bit when he saw that Bodie was trying. "I don't know why it's twelve. That's just the way it is. I didn't have any choice in the matter."

Bodie really didn't know quite what to say. He'd never heard a more improbable explanation in his life. On the other hand, the whole situation was rather improbable. In which case, he might as well just accept anything Ray told him without protest.

"OK-ay," Bodie finally said. "How did y'get into C.1.5? Have elvesh in the C.I.D. now, do we?"

Ray couldn't quite understand Bodie's reaction. He'd expected disbelief, protests, something more than this calm acceptance. 'Oh, well...' He shrugged mentally.

"'Course they don't have elves in the C.I.D." Doyle stopped and thought a moment. "Well, none that I know of," he added fairly. "It was just a background Cowley and I put together."

"Cowley 'n' YOU! He knowsh then?"

"Well, of course he does. He'd have to, wouldn't he? I sure couldn't take off for three days every month if he didn't know why, could 1?"

"Guessh not," Bodie agreed.

"And giving me the number '4.5' was his way of making a joke. I don't see much humour in it, but if it amuses the old Scottish so-and-so..."

"Oh," Bodie replied, then grinned suddenly. "Oh, I get it.'" He absentmindedly started to take another drink of coffee only to find his cup was empty. He stared into it owlishly. "I'm out of coffee. Let me get shome more be- fore y'go on with thish enthrallin' shaga." He pried himself up from the sofa. "D'you want shome?"

"Yes, please. Just pour it into an egg cup for me, thanks." He leaned back against the sofa while Bodie went for the coffee. He'd no more than relaxed when the cat jumped up beside him. "Go away, Snowball." He pushed at the cat but didn't make any noticeable difference in her position. She butted her head against him and he tumbled backwards onto the floor.

Before he could recover, Snowball was down beside him. She placed a paw in the middle of his back and began to wash his hair for him. Ray propped his chin on one hand and lay there, resigned to suffering her ministrations. Early on she'd apparently decided he was just an odd kind of kitten. She seemed satisfied to concentrate on his hair, but he was getting fed up with having cat lick on his hair and his curls were definitely in need of a proper wash.

When Bodie came back into the room, he took one look at Ray and the cat and roared with laughter.

"It's not funny," Doyle said angrily. "C'mere and get this bloody cat O-F-F me."

Bodie put down the coffee and picked up the cat, still chuckling. He put it down and gave it a light swat on the arse causing it to scamper into the other room out of reach.

As soon as the cat was removed, Ray picked himself up, brushed himself off and hopped back up on the table, helping himself to another thimbleful of whisky from Bodie's glass.

Bodie sat back down an the sofa and picked up his mug, blowing on the coffee to cool it. "Why th' cat, Ray? Where'd it come from?"

"Bloody moggy. If it weren't for her, you'd never've found out about any of this. She belongs t'my neighbor, Cindy, doesn't she now? The brunette with the long hair. Anyway, Cindy's just moved to town and doesn't really know anybody very well yet. And it turns out the damn cat's preggers."

Bodie looked up in alarm. It had seemed awfully fat, now that he thought about it.

"Relax, she's not due for a couple of weeks, yet. But it's her first litter and she's purebred and temperamental, and Cindy didn't want to leave her at the vet's. Didn't want to leave her at all , but this family emergency came up and the cat hates traveling. So she sweet- talked me into taking her. Said all I'd have to do was give her food and water twice a day, change the litter box, and talk to her now and then.

"She said ... she promised she'd return before I had to leave. But when she was ready to head back, her car broke down and they had to order the part and I couldn't very well tell her why it was so important for me to leave, so I was stuck, wasn't I?"

He took another swig of whisky, disgustedly." Got through two nightsh more or lessh--less okay, though I could have done with lessh attention from the bleedin' cat. Then, tonight, YOU show up." He clambered to his feet and staggered over to face Bodie, glaring at him. "Why Couldn't you have shtayed away just one more night?" he asked plaintively.

"Shorry, shunshine. I wouldn't've intruded if I'd known." He looked at the swaying elf. "Think you'd better lay off the hard shtuff b'fore you're as shloshed as me." He took, the thimble from Ray's hands and dumped the whisky back in the glass, then handed it back , shoving the egg cup over to him. "Have shome coffee, inshtead."

"Sh'pose yer right," Ray slurred, not arguing with him. He dipped the thimble into the egg cup and slurped at the beverage. "You drink that, then. Can't have perfectly good malt scotch goin' to washts."

Bodie could see the logic in that, so he finished the drink with a few quick swallows, then stared into the glass, contemplating the universe. "Well, what're we gonna do now?" he inquired after a few moments of silence, put- ting the empty glass down on the table.

Ray set the thimble down, abruptly. "Don't know about you, but I'm gonna have a leak." He hopped down from the table and headed for the loo, Bodie following behind him. Doyle turned after a few steps and stared up--way up--at his partner, feeling at a distinct disadvantage. "What'd'ya think yer doin'?"

"Wanna watch. Never sheen an elf take a leak, before, have I?"

"Whald'ya think, we do it with our earsh? It'sh jusht the shame as you, mate." He turned and stalked off.

"Shtill wanna shee," Bodie said, following him. He stood in the doorway and watched as Ray jumped up on the toilet seat.

Balancing an the edge, the elf opened his fly and peed into the bowl. When he'd finished and was tucking himself back in, he looked up at Bodie, speculatively. "Long ash you're here, how 'bout turning on the shower for me and puttin' the shampoo down here, so I c'n wash my hair. I'm tired of having it all over cat lick."

Bodie did as he was asked, turning the shower on low so it wouldn't wash Doyle away. Then, sat on the pot and watched, fascinated, as Ray stripped and began washing his hair. When he was finished, Bodie turned off the shower and handed the elf a flannel to use as a towel .

Doyle glared Lip at him peevishly. "Wha'cha starin' at? I haven't added or subtracted anything since the last time y'saw me." He'd finished drying his body and had started on his hair.

Carefully picking him up, Bodie put him on the dirty clothes basket where he could examine him more carefully. He reached out a finger and ran it carefully down the miniature cock.

Ray jumped, nearly falling off the basket. "Bodie! What'n' hell 're you up to? Leave me alone."

"It's such a dinky dink," Bodie giggled. He stroked it again and it began to enlarge.

Ray looked down at himself, then stared across at Bodie. "An' what d'you expect t'do now?" he asked. "We're hardly a compatible size to make love t'night." He put his hands on his hips.

Bodie giggled, " 'M sure You'll think of shomethin', clever little elf like you." He buried his face in his hands, still giggling. 'Suppose I should be sorry,' he thought. 'Startin' somethin' when there's no way I c'n finish it, but ... a miniature Doyle ... he's just . . . So. . . ' He didn't have the words to describe what his feelings were at that time. 'Anyway, not perfectly sure 'm not just dreamin' all this. Don't usu'lly hallcin...hollu ...see things, but guess there's a first time for ever'thin'. All that booze I drank...'He looked up to apologize to Doyle, but all that was on the basket was a damp flannel. He looked around confusedly. 'Jus' a dream. Tha's all.'

He stripped down and showered, then dried off and tied the towel around his waist. He went into the lounge to turn off the lights before going to bed and there was Ray, curled up in his jacket, face buried in the lining, wankin' away. He came while Bodie watched, and lay there, panting.

Bodie returned to the bathroom and dampened the flannel with warm water. He went over to the settee and sat down beside Doyle. He cleaned him up, then stroked the still-damp curls with a gentle finger. "I'm shorry, Ray, really." He ignored the hint of moisture in the elf's eyes.

"Tha's all right. Just...'s lonely doin' it by m'self. An' elves turn on faster than humans."

"That why it doeshn't take much t'get you goin?"

"Yeah. Tha's right. Whereas you, an the other hand..." He looked over at Bodie's bare torso, then got up and scrambled onto Bodie's thigh. He could just comfortably reach his lover's nipple with his mouth. He suckled with great determination, but while it hardened satisfactorily, nothing else happened. He let go and stepped back. "See? If you were an elf, no matter how drunk you were, that'd set you off right away."

Bodie looked down at himself in disgust. He could still feel the little quivers of electricity going from his nipple to his groin, but Ray was right, there was no reaction there at all. He flushed, embarrassed by his lack of response.

The elf smiled up at him, forgivingly. "Tha's all right, love. I'll take you over another elf any day. After all, I joined 0.1.5 just to be with you, didn't 1?"

"You what? You joined ... ? You went through every- thing-- Cowley, Macklin, shtretching, shrinking--jusht for me?" Bodie was having difficulty believing his ears again. He knew Ray loved him, but hadn't begun to realize how much.

"Just for you. Was goin' along my merry way, took one look at you and fell heels over ears in love, didn't I? Thought I'd never talk Cowley into lettin' me in. First I had to convince him I was an elf--no easy task, I'll tell you. Then I had to devise all the spells for stretchin', for handlin' steel (invisible insulation on the gun butt--'s why I don't let people handle my gun, much), for changin' my ears." He gave Bodie a brilliant smile. "But it was worth it. Even if we hadn't become lovers-- just being with you every day would've almost been enough."

Bodie stared at him, glassy-eyed. It had been a very long day; he'd had way too much to drink and this was just too much to take in all at once.

Ray smiled at him again, tenderly. "C'mon, lover. Time for bed. It'll all be right in the morning." He took Bodie's thumb in both hands and tugged until he finally got up.

Bodie turned out the lights in the lounge and bath- room, then went in the bedroom and crawled into bed. As he turned out the bedside lamp, he felt a tickly kiss at the side of his mouth.

"I'd better sleep on the settee, love. Wouldn't want you t'turn over in your sleep an' squash me. Sleep well, Bodie."

"Mmm," Bodie answered, half asleep already. He pulled the duvet up under his chin and knew nothing more for the rest of the night.

Ray was never so glad to see a sunrise in his life. He had heard Cindy arrive home during the night after he'd tucked Bodie in. Since she lived next door but one and al- ways had trouble with the lock, his elven ears had no trouble distinguishing her arrival from anyone else's. As soon as the dawn light was streaking the sky, Ray got clothes from his closet, (quietly, so as not to wake Bodie), gathered up Snowball and all her paraphernalia, and was on Cindy's doorstep, ringing the bell.

The girl was thrilled to have her darling back so soon, and profuse in her apologies to Doyle. He brushed them aside with a word or two, mentally vowing never to be put in such a position again.

Back in his flat, he removed all traces of his smaller self, a putting the egg cup back on the shelf and returning the thimble to the sewing kit he'd found in the flat when he moved in. He didn't move Bodie's glass and mug from where they'd been left the night before, but went into the bathroom to gather up his miniature clothes from the floor, slightly damp with the water from his shower. He locked the door, then drew a door in the air and stepped through it, disappearing for a moment, before re- turning the same way, having left the clothes in a place Bodie would never find them, all ready for him next month.

He then undressed and crawled into bed beside his lover, snuggling up to his warmth with gratitude.

Bodie awoke with the sun shining full in his face, to find his lover propped up on one elbow, grinning down at him. "'S nice surprise findin' you in my bed when I got home. Should happen more often."

"Ray?" Bodie blinked up at him. "You're back to normal."

"Normal? What're you on about now?" Ray looked puzzled.

"You know. You were only a foot high. And there was this cat," Bodie explained, not too coherently.

"Ca t? I don't have a cat. And me a foot high? You must've really tied one on last night. Better lay off the booze for a while." Doyle ran a hand down to Bodie's groin fondling his tumescent cock. "I can think of better things for you to do."

"But . . . "Bodie tried to pull the details out of his hazy memory, but they were already fast disappearing as his body responded to Ray's ministrations. He gave it up as a bad job and gave in to his lover's wiles--three days without Doyle causing him to react eagerly to Ray's every touch.

He gave as good as he got, using hands and mouth to cover every inch of his lover's body until they were both flying. When Ray took his hard shaft into his hot mouth, Bodie cried out with delight and reached for his lover to reciprocate. The smell of his musk and the taste and feel of Ray in his mouth, were all it took to set Bodie off, arching up involuntarily. Ray came moments later and Bodie swallowed everything he gave him, then dozed off with Ray's cock still in his mouth, spent by the intensity of his climax.

When he woke again, Ray was cuddled around him and the wisps of memory that still hung around he dismissed as a more-than-usually fantastic dream and never mentioned it again.

It was only every once in a while, when he was puzzling over Doyle's mysterious still-unexplained three day absences or chuckling quietly over a vaguely remembered explanation of 4.5's number or when he noticed the slant of Doyle's odd green eyes; that he wondered ... merely wondered ... if it really had been a dream.

-- THE END --

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