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the island of conclusions

Thy firmness makes my circle just (White Collar fic, nc-17)

the island of conclusions

bright star

Thy firmness makes my circle just (White Collar fic, nc-17)

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bright star
Is someones still handing out cliche_bingo cards? 'Cause I could use one. Don't know why I've all over the well-worn tropes of dub-con recently, but there you go. And here's another.


Title: Thy firmness makes my circle just.
Fandom: White Collar
Rating: NC-17
Pairing: Peter/Neal
Spoilers: None. Takes place sometime before the events of the end of S2.
Warnings: involuntary arousal of the sex-pollen variety; captivity; semi-public sex; fever!sex.
Word Count: ~4K
Disclaimer: Not mine, no profit, no offense meant.

a/n: This is for a prompt from rabidchild at Running Hot: Would love Neal or Peter infected with some sort of plot-cakey sex pollen, and he spikes a dangerous fever that can only be relieved by, um, you know... . I don’t know if this scenario counts as the sex-pollen trope, but there’s involuntary arousal, fever and, um, relief. So. If something can be shameless h/c and shameless porn at the same time, this is probably it.
a/n: I think there are consent issues here of the “giving consent while not in possession of one’s full faculties” variety—so please don’t read it that’s a trigger or something that bugs you.
a/n: title from John Donne’s “Valediction Forbidding Mourning.”

Summary: If he’d seen Peter look this vulnerable more than once before, he couldn’t remember it. It was worrying, and it tilted the natural order of the universe on its axis. But more than that, it brought emotions to the surface that Neal usually liked to keep buried deep, a fierce tenderness the most respectable among them.


By the time they flung Peter back into the cell Neal had stopped pacing. He was squatting against the far wall, elbows on knees and head in hands.

He looked up sharply when the door swung open and a masked, rifle-bearing guard shoved Peter inside. A second faceless gunman slid a tray with a bowl of water and a few slices of bread toward them so roughly the water sloshed over the edges of its container. Then the door banged shut again.

“Peter.” Neal was on his feet, arms out but not daring to touch. They’d taken his watch, but his well-calibrated internal clock told him they’d had Peter longer this time than any of the previous ones. He hated to think what that meant. “You alright?”

“Yeah.” Peter was standing, at least, no visible blood on him, and he mostly looked disgusted, like he couldn’t believe he was having to deal with things as annoying as captivity or interrogation. Then he pushed a hand through his hair and swayed so alarmingly that Neal barely had time to catch his shoulders before he toppled over.

“Dammit,” Neal hissed as he eased Peter onto one of the two lumpy pallets in the cell. No bed frames, of course, in case they made them into lock picks or weapons or worse. Neal was still surprised that between them he and Peter hadn’t come up with a way to turn the soft mattresses into instruments of escape. “What did they do to you?”

“Nothing.” Peter gasped a little around the word and went even paler. Neal cupped the back of his neck and pushed his head down between his knees. “Just,” he amended, voice muffled now by his position. “They had this thing. Halfway between a cattle prod and Harry Potter’s wand. And fuck if they didn’t love their new toy.

Neal bit back a curse. “Where?” he said instead.

“Ribs, mostly. Chest.”

“Okay. Okay.” Neal fought down his rising anxiety. “Soon as you can sit up, I’m gonna take a look.”

“Why? Not like we have a first aid kit or anything.” But Peter sat up obligingly enough and let Neal push up the thin gray fabric of the scrubs they’d been given without protest. He was back to looking annoyed, which Neal took to be a good sign.

Sure enough, there was a vicious pattern of burns and bruises across both sides of Peter’s ribcage—a random sprinkling over his chest—they must have used the new toy as a bludgeon as well. None of the burns seemed worse than second degree, and the blows hadn’t broken the skin, but they looked heavy enough to have done internal damage.

Peter’s skin was paler on his torso than on his face and arms. Usually shielded from the sun by cheap suits and cotton button-down, Neal thought, with a twinge. The red and purple marks of his injuries stood out sharply in the cell’s glaring, unchanging light, and Neal fought the urge to soothe his hands over them. Three days of enforced proximity had, paradoxically, made them more chary than usual of violating each other’s personal space.

“Can you breathe okay?” he asked instead. “They didn’t break any ribs, did they?”

Peter experimented gingerly, drawing in a lungful of air. “No. They were pretty careful, I think. I didn’t tell them anything,” he said abruptly, although Neal had had no intention of asking.

“I know you didn’t, Peter,” he murmured. “I know.” And I wish you knew I wouldn’t blame you if you had, he added silently. He would have given half his secret horde for a couple of Vicodin and a tube of antibiotic ointment right now, but as it was Neal couldn’t do anything but sit silently and try to share Peter’s obvious pain.

He wished they knew what these guys wanted at least. For once, he and Peter had gone in as a double act, posing as private buyers of a new line of designer pharmaceuticals. But something or someone had blown their cover, and halfway through the second round of negotiations they’d been expertly cold-cocked, trussed up and transported to this cell in the middle of who-knew-where. Not in the city, Neal was somehow sure—even barely conscious he had a good head for reckoning distances.

They’d been interrogated separately but in the most oblique way Neal had ever experienced. No clue as to whether their captors knew they were Feds or what kind of information they wanted. None of their captors had taken off their masks yet, at least, which might mean they had no immediate plans to kill them. Or might mean something else entirely.

“They’ll find us soon,” Peter said. “Hughes, Diana, Jones. They’re a good team.”

Neal looked at him. Peter’s head was bent, his wrists slack on his thighs. Neal couldn’t see his face, but he sounded about as exhausted and despondent as Neal had ever seen him. Maybe more.

Then Neal noticed something that made his breath catch.

This time he did touch, circling the tiny puncture wound on the inside of Peter’s elbow with his thumb. “What’s this? Did they give you something?”

“Hmm?” Peter winced a little, as if the flesh were sensitive there, and looked down. “Maybe. Yeah. It’s a little blurry. Maybe something to soften me up? But it didn’t work. Don’t worry.”

“Don’t worry?” Incredulous, Neal swung around to face Peter again. “Just because they’re experimental drug designers--that’s no reason to worry. “ All respect for personal space forgotten, he laid one hand on Peter’s face and found the pulse point under his jaw with the other, looking for signs of drugging, poisoning, he’d missed. “How’re you feeling? Any weird symptoms?”

“Jesus, Neal. I’m not seeing flying pink bunnies, if that’s what you mean. Get off me.”

Peter weakly batted Neal’s hands away, but Neal batted right back, kept his fingers on Peter’s neck until he had a reasonable sense of his heart rate: somewhat fast and shallow, and his skin was slightly clammy, but nothing inconsistent with having been recently worked over with a high tech taser.

Neal took his hands away and sat back on his heels. “You’re sure, right? You’d tell me?”

“Yes, Neal.” Peter sighed. “If I’m about to transform into a giant human fly, I’ll give you a head’s up.”

“Thanks.” Peter’s sarcasm was reassuring, but it didn’t put much of a dent in Neal’s worry. “I appreciate it. Could you eat? They left the usual.” He gestured towards the bread.

“Nah. Just beat, y’know? Think I’m gonna lie down for a minute.”

Suddenly, Peter looked like he was about to pass out again, white around the mouth, eyelids fluttering. Instinctively, Neal reached for his shoulders and guided him into a comfortable position on the mattress. Peter didn’t protest, even when Neal smoothed the fabric over his back. His pliancy was just as disturbing as everything else, maybe more so and Neal would have given the other half of his horde for a blanket. Peter was asleep almost immediately, but Neal kept a hand between his shoulder blades until he was absolutely sure of the smooth, unobstructed pattern of his breathing.

Then he propped himself up against the wall next to the pallet and watched Peter sleep. If he’d seen Peter look this vulnerable more than once before, he couldn’t remember it. It was worrying, and it tilted the natural order of the universe on its axis. But more than that, it brought emotions to the surface that Neal usually liked to keep buried deep, a fierce tenderness the most respectable among them.

++

Luckily, or sadly, depending on how you looked at it, Neal had come up with any number of ways to amuse himself whilst locked in a cell over the years. And finally, to distract himself from both his wayward feelings and from speculating too wildly about just what kind of dangerous substance might be circulating through Peter’s blood stream, he resurrected one of the most soothing: ways to steal and fence the Tyrannosaurus Rex skeleton in the antechamber of the Museum of Natural History. He’d thought of about fifty during his first stint in prison, and maybe five more during his second.

He well was into number fifty-seven when a muted clicking noise disrupted his reverie. He blinked, and then saw that Peter had curled himself into a tight shivering ball, arms wrapped tight around his chest. The noise was Peter’s teeth chattering.

Neal’s first thought was that some kind of delayed shock from the beating had set in, but when he reached down to touch Peter’s cheek, the skin wasn’t cool, as he’d expected, but alarmingly warm.

Not good. Whatever was causing that it couldn’t be good, Neal thought as he gently shook Peter’s shoulder. “Peter—wake up. Can you wake up for me now?”

“Mmmm?” Peter came around slowly, peered at Neal through reddened eyes. “Wha’s going on?”

“I don’t know. You’re running some kind of fever. Does anything hurt? I mean, does anything hurt worse than before?”

“N-n-no. Just cold. Kinda dizzy.” Peter curled further into himself and squeezed his eyes shut. Massively dizzy, Neal translated, if the world was spinning even while he was lying perfectly still. “L-lemme alone.”

“No can do, partner.” Neal tried to sound more level-headed than he felt. “I gotta look at those burns again.” He didn’t think enough time had passed for infection to have set in, but he was almost hoping it had. At least that would be a known quantity, unlike most of the scenarios running through his head.

He coaxed Peter onto his back, and slid his shirt up again. None of the marks looked any redder or more swollen than before, though Peter’s skin was goose-pimpling around them. Cautiously, Neal explored further with his hands, testing for tenderness around the wounds, across his abdomen in case Peter had sustained internal damage he couldn’t see. Peter didn’t try to stop him, though he shivered under Neal’s touch, twisted restlessly with something that didn’t seem to be pain.

“What is it?” Neal asked, concerned.

“N-nothing. J-just –you know.”

Neal didn’t. But he nodded, and on impulse stripped off his own top and tucked it around Peter’s shoulders. Another layer of thin fabric wouldn’t make any difference, he knew, but he couldn’t stand not being able to do anything.

With a continued feeling of futility, he got up and slammed his hands against the door. “Hey!” he yelled. “We need some help in here! My partner’s sick—we need a doctor.”

He shouted and banged for as long as he could keep up the conviction that someone might respond. Which wasn’t very long at all. As he’d expected, no one came.

When Neal turned back, Peter’s chills had subsided. He’d flung aside Neal’s shirt, and lay on his back, almost panting, limbs moving restlessly.

Scooping up the bowl of water, Neal knelt beside him again and felt his forehead again. Even more feverish than before, he was pretty sure.

“Still dizzy?” he asked.

Peter nodded. “Hot,” he added. His voice wasn’t shaky anymore, but it was thin and strained.

“I know, buddy. I’m going to help you up so you can drink some of this. You just let me do the work, okay?”

Peter nodded again, and Neal shifted around so that one knee was behind Peter’s shoulders, let Peter rest against him while he raised the bowl to his lips. This time, when Neal put his hands on him, Peter made a seemingly involuntary noise, almost a moan. Again, it didn’t seem like a sign of pain—more like his skin was hypersensitive to touch. Or it could have been just the pleasure of moisture in his dry mouth.

Peter gulped at the water, and Neal managed to save just enough to wet down his discarded shirt. Letting Peter slip back down to the mattress, Neal passed the damp cloth over his flushed face. Another of those almost moans escaped Peter’s lips.

Encouraged, Neal slid the cloth lower, along the sides of Peter’s neck and into the dip of his collarbone. But now Peter made a vague, hoarse sound of protest and squirmed away from him.

“Shhh,” Neal murmured, trying to steady him. “You need it—it’ll cool you down.”

“Neal—no,” Peter said more forcefully. He twisted so that his back was to Neal, and his face averted.

But not before Neal had seen the erection tenting out the front of Peter’s scrubs.

Neal froze. Then he carefully put the wet shirt back in the bowl and tried to gather his wits. All his life, he had prided himself on his ability to phrase anything in a charming and elegant manner. “Good morning, ma’am, we’ve come to steal your Picasso”; “My apologies, sir, but I’m afraid your document is a forgery.” Things like that. But this—this escaped even his quite considerable capacity for tact. Still, he had to know. Their lives might depend on knowing what they were dealing with.

So, throwing elegance to the winds, he said, “Peter—is that something that usually happens to you when you’re sick.”

Peter seemed to have reached the same conclusion about the need to be straightforward, because he answered, voice thin and taught as a bowstring, “No. The opposite, really.”

Neal digested that information. “Could be a side effect of the fever.”

“Yeah. Or the fever could be a side-effect of whatever f-fucked sex juice they injected m-me with.” Peter sounded furious now, and his voice was starting to shake again.

“Hey, hey, calm down—you’re just gonna make it worse if you get upset.” Neal put a tentative hand on Peter’s shoulder. The heat of his body bled right through his shirt—if anything, the fever was worse than it had been five minutes ago. “Turn around, okay, and we’ll figure this out.” Peter tensed. “C’mon. You’re not going to shock me—you know whatever shreds of virtue I might have had disappeared long before I met you.”

Peter huffed a tiny laugh at that, and turned over very slowly—all those bruises and burns must be really starting to ache, Neal realized with a pang. He kept his eyes fixed resolutely on Peter’s face, but even that was wrenching. He looked wretched, eyes too wide, too bright, and a little desperate, for all the bravado of his earlier words.

“Okay,” Neal said, in what he hoped was a calm and soothing voice. “Mind over matter, right? Think about something cold and, um, quelling. Your grandmother. Those hideous Norman Rockwell scenes in the Saturday Evening Post.”

“Not helping, Neal,” Peter growled.

“Really?” The things you learn about a guy.

“Really. You don’t wanna know.”

They both succumbed to slightly hysterical giggles over that. But something about the tone of Peter’s laughter told Neal he was rapidly becoming too ill to deal with anything of this coherently.

“Alright, find your own images, then—no need to share,” he said hastily, and looked away.

Neal held his peace, listening to the increasingly ragged sounds of Peter’s breathing. Whatever Peter had come up with, it didn’t seem to be working. Neal could sense him becoming more agitated, almost thrashing, making tiny helpless noises just this side of pain. Then, out of the corner of his eye, he saw Peter start to reach for himself, only to draw his hand back sharply. A moment later, the same thing happened. When Neal saw the hand starting a third time, he couldn’t help himself.

“Go ahead, Peter—it doesn’t matter. Won’t be anything I haven’t seen before.” Yeah, and that’s too much information, right there, he chided himself. “I’ll turn my head and close my eyes, okay. Stick my fingers in my ears and go la-la-la if it’ll make you feel better.”

“No.” Peter’s voice was a thread of sound now, a rasp. Whatever was working on him, it was pushing him downhill fast. “Don’t wanna give them the satisfaction. They’re probably watching, the bastards.”

Neal wished he could believe that fever was making Peter paranoid, but he couldn’t. The idea made a sickening kind of sense.

But if that was the problem—

“Hey,” he said, turning back towards Peter and trying to ignore the flushed misery of his face. “I’ve got an idea. Give me your shirt.”

“Wha’?” Peter blinked at Neal, obviously trying hard to focus. “Uh-uh. More nakedness isn’t gonna help, Neal.”

“Just give it a try. Please?”

Peter made a tiny shrugging movement and didn’t try to stop Neal when he lifted the bottom of his shirt. Even so, it took a surprising amount of manhandling to get Peter out of the thing. He was heartbreakingly hot and heavy in Neal’s grip, too weak to help much at all. Finally, though, Neal got the shirt free—it was damp and rank with sweat, but he thought it would do the trick.

Next, he nudged Peter back onto his side, and lay down facing him, both of them bare-chested now. He laid the shirt over their facing shoulders and hips, and found that if he scooted just a bit closer he could position it so that it would block out the brutal light of the cell.

“There,” he whispered, Peter’s face now just inches from his own, “privacy. They may be watching, but there’s no need to give them a floor show.”

It shouldn’t have worked—a thin, dirty scrim of fabric to block out the rest of the world—but it did. Something--the intimacy of their positions, the relief of relative dimness—swept away the last of Peter’s defenses. With a shuddering sigh, he leaned forward, pressing his hot face into Neal’s collarbone. He was trembling again, but whether from fever or arousal Neal couldn’t tell. He might even have been shaking a little bit himself.

“Go ahead,” Neal murmured, not bothering to hide the tenderness in his voice. “Do what you gotta do—I’m still gonna close my eyes. We’ll forget this ever happened.”

Peter muttered something into Neal’s shoulder—he could feel his lips move against his skin, but couldn’t make out the words. He tilted his head so that his ear was closer to Peter’s mouth.

“Hmm?”

And the current of desperation in Peter’s voice would have wrecked Neal even if his words had not. “Touch me,” he was saying. “Please—Neal—just—touch me.”

Neal canted his head down further, shifting until Peter was forced to look him in the eyes. “You’re sure?”

Peter nodded—wide open and pleading in a way Neal knew he had never seen before.

“What about Elizabeth?” he asked, and felt ridiculous that after all this he should be the one with scruples.

“She knows,” Peter answered.

For a moment, Neal thought that Peter had truly fallen into delirium, for how could Elizabeth know anything about what had happened to them here? When he realized that Peter meant something altogether different, a feeling swept through him that might have been akin to joy. Whatever it was, it gave him courage.

“Okay,” he murmured, and moving past a momentary qualm about believing the words of someone so obviously not in full possession of their faculties, he slid his fingers under the waistband of Peter’s scrubs.

Peter gasped-groaned hard into Neal’s chest at the first touch—his sensitivity seemed only to have increased with his fever. By the time Neal had curled his fingers around the rock-hard length of his sex, Peter was panting, clawing at the flesh of Neal’s side like he was scrabbling for purchase in a rock slide. It wasn’t something Neal talked about much, and certainly not with Peter, but he had held his fair share of cocks in his hand. Never once had he felt the need for the old clichéd adjective of “throbbing.” But he might have used it now. He could feel the hammer beat of Peter’s heart through the outmost layer of his achingly hot skin, and he panicked for a moment, thinking he was just as likely to send Peter into cardiac arrest as to relieve anything. But if the disjointed, urgent thrusts Peter was making into Neal’s fist were any indication, they’d gone too far to turn back now.

“Easy now,” he murmured into Peter’s hair. “Go slow.”

It shouldn’t have been this sweet, Neal knew, a semi-delirious hand job on the floor of some prison cell. But it was Peter. And even though this was nothing like Neal had imagined it, on the rare occasions when he’d let himself imagine, it was sweet, so sweet, to touch him. There was something almost heady about it—the weird intimacy of their makeshift grown-up blanket fort, Peter’s uncharacteristic neediness, even the wild heat of his fever. If he let his control slip, even for a moment, Neal knew he’d respond to it all so strongly Peter wouldn’t need to lay a finger on him. He’d be done.

But he kept himself in check. This wasn’t for him.

And yet, for all the fervor of Peter’s need, it took a while. Something, general weakness or residual shame, seemed to hold him back. Neal tried to go slow, imagining that easing Peter through a gentle orgasm would be best. He stripped his cock with an easy rhythm, played with the skin around the head, the slit. But it only seemed to heighten Peter’s distress. Finally, worried that Peter might exhaust himself without release, Neal switched tactics. He sped up the pace until he had Peter fucking into his fist, and then reached behind his balls and pushed one finger into his hole.

That did it. Peter went completely still for a moment, then bucked his hips violently once, twice, three times, even his spunk burning hot as it splashed against Neal’s bare stomach. When it was over, he collapsed face down on the mattress with the most heartfelt sigh Neal had ever heard, little tremors of aftershock rippling across his back. Feeling a little shell-shocked himself, Neal tucked their erstwhile tent around Peter’s shoulders, and kept a hand on the nape of his neck until he felt sure that his heart rate was actually slowing. He might have been imagining it, but he though Peter’s skin felt cooler too. There was a film of sweat on him now, at any rate, as if the fever might be on its way to breaking.

He cleaned them off as best he could with the other shirt—no help at all from Peter, who was now in some blessedly peaceful state of unconsciousness. And then, because he couldn’t imagine doing anything else, he lay down next to Peter again. He’d be cold soon if he didn’t, Neal thought—they both would.

++

And that’s where they were when Jones, Diana and a team of New York State Police broke down the door of the cell—located, it turned out, just west of Utica. Peter’s obvious illness overrode any questions about what they might be doing, tangled together on a single pallet, and for a while everything was a flurry of 911 calls and EMTs.

Jones was angrier than Neal had ever seen him, muttering about “crazy motherfuckers, with their motherfucking drugs and their motherfucking videos.” The pit of Neal’s stomach went ice-cold at those words, but Diana touched his elbow and whispered that no one was ever going to see footage like that of her boss if she could help it, and Neal thanked all the gods that he was going to come under the umbrella of Diana’s fierce devotion to Peter in this instance.

And if, when Elizabeth came to find him in the hospital waiting room to tell him Peter was going to be fine, even if no one could identify the drugs in his system, she seemed to have some extra knowledge in her eyes, Neal was determined not to worry about it. They were alive, they were free, and they could figure everything else out in due course.

the end
  • This. Was. Perfect.

    First of all, the image of them having a little slap fight over neal trying to feel for Peter's pulse is hysterical, and a well-placed bit of humor.

    Second, you've rendered Peter's vulnerability so very well. It's just filled my imagination up.

    I love that the story's from Neal's POV, and you've converyed his voice very well. And the sex scene between them is really sweet. What a wonderful idea to put the shirt over their heads. And of course, Diana and Jones are such loyal friends in the end.

    Such a great fill for my prompt - Thanks so, so much.

    *is glowing*
    • Yay! I'm so glad you enjoyed it! I was hoping it might be a little bit funny without being absolute crack--and now you know I have a total vulnerability kink ;)

      Thanks for the prompt!

      (and consider this a tiny down payment on the other fic I owe you! not that that one is going to be much longer--just, late. I'm more than 1K into it, though, and I'm planning to get more done over the weekend)
  • Oh wow, so hot and tender all at the same time, with the cute banter near the beginning giving way to total need. Wonderful!
  • Awwwww, this was really sweet. You really made me feel Peter's sickness and fever here. I like Neal taking care of him.
    • heh, leave it to me to turn sex-pollen!prison!fic into something sweet--sometimes I just want to smack myself!

      But I'm glad you enjoyed it--I have a soft spot for getting Neal to take care of Peter. Thanks for reading!

      Edited at 2011-06-10 06:07 pm (UTC)
  • My button. You have pushed it. Furiously. F:lsjafl;sdjaklfj;alfjlka fdlksajfl kas;jfdlk
  • Oh I love this!!! Seriously just LOVE it. Thank you!
  • Grinning like a big, grinning loon XD

    And hey, look what was directly below this post on my flist: http://hc-bingo.livejournal.com/59642.html? did somebody say prompts? Would these do? *eyebrows*
  • Beautiful!!!
  • Found through wcnewsletter (the way I find most things, actually). So surprisingly perfect - sex pollen (or drugs) is such an old trope, and yet you use it so cleverly here, letting the focus rest on the character's interactions rather than on the plot point that leads to revelation.
    • Thanks so much for the nice feedback! I guess that's the fun of these old tropes--figuring out exactly how they'd fit on specific characters. I'm glad you felt the focus was on the interactions/relationship!

      Thanks for reading--I'm really glad you enjoyed it!
  • That was a great little plot even if this a fan fiction trope. It's not what the idea is so much as how you write it and you wrote this one very well. The scenes were vivid and the emotions rang true.
    • Thanks so much for the lovely feedback! It's fun, I think to see how a conventional scenario will play out in a specific setting with specific character :)

      Thanks for reading--I'm really glad you enjoyed it!
  • This was lovely!
  • I really enjoyed this. Nice seeing the roles reversed and having Peter be the one that needed help. Good job.
    • I'm so glad you enjoyed it! I do like to see Peter getting some comfort sometimes :)

      Thanks for reading and commenting!
  • I loved it! I loved that Neal was the one who had to take care of Peter and take control. Nicely done. :D
  • I love how you were able to play this straight (so to speak) and make a completely unrealistic fandom cliche into something sweet (yes, I agree) and plausible. I also loved the touch of Neal using his shirt to cover them.
    • Thank you! I'm not great at crack, so I did want to play it straight, as it were--I'm glad it seemed even remotely plausible. And I am glad it seemed sweet--this pairing is my pairing of sweetness, actually--they are very straightforward in their affection and respect for each other on screen, whether you slash them or not, and are canonically quite caring.

      Thanks for reading! glad you liked the shirt :)
  • I have never actually seen White Collar, but sex pollen is a kink of mine >> *no shame whatsoever* so uh yeah. Very hot. And awesome, despite me not knowing the characters. And loved the touch of sweetness too. ^^
    • Oh cool! I'm glad it was satisfying even if you don't know the show :) And yeah, they are a very sweet pair, even on TV, whether you slash them or not, so I'm happy if even their sex pollen!prison sex came off that way :)

      thanks for reading and commenting!
  • This was a joy to find (as there aren't a lot of Woobie!Peter fics out there) and a joy to read! :-) I think it's great that Peter tries to be all macho and pretend nothing's wrong before promptly collapsing. And I agree with rabidchild about the humour and awesomeness of the hand slapping showdown. *g* Most of all, I love the way Neal takes care of Peter so tenderly. Usually, fic involving sex pollen is all PWP, but this wasn't. You managed to make it hurt/comforty and emphasized the emotional bond between Neal and Peter over anything sexual.
    • lol, you should read my bloodplay!fic ;) I seem to be compelled to take these wham-bam-thank you-ma'am PWP tropes and make them all sappy and and h/c-y.

      But I'm very glad you enjoyed it! These two are really a paring of sweetness to me--it's very easy to imagine them being tender with each other--and I love giving Peter a chance to be taken care of (even in kind of awful circumstances here).

      Glad you found some humor too--it seemed like it was going to be hard to get through the situation without a few laughs :)

      thanks for reading and commenting!
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