...I'm kind of falling for this pairing.
Disclaimer: Don’t own ’em, making no profit off ’em, etc.
Word Count: 2,128
Summary: Yusuf had indiscretions of his own, aside from drugs, mostly revolving around syrupy fruit pastries and any video games that involved cars. The man possessed an abiding affinity for all things Grand Theft Auto that Eames couldn't ever quite bring himself to mock. Particularly when it involved jostling to see who could wreak the most havoc and trying to outdo each other with variations on the word fuck.
Notes: Inspired by a prompt from inception_kink: Yusuf makes the best drugs. Whenever Eames stays in Mombasa, they have a weekly standing date to get high and have sex.
The architect, Edita, was a bore.
When Edita built, even for trial runs, it was always neat and impersonal, nothing well-worn or comforting. Eames saw dreaming as a wonderful way of pampering yourself from the inside out, treating your subconscious to a bit of whatever it liked best. As long as the dream world got the job done, there was no harm in livening it up a little.
Infiltrating the mind of an Italian fashion designer was almost embarrassingly simple, but it went over without a hitch and paid well, which was all that mattered. Another success for his unpublishable resume.
Eames had a habit, quite often, of taking off on his own between jobs. It didn't make sense to spend too much time in one place, though there were a few he preferred.
Mombasa was an amalgam of many things, all of them fascinating. Back-alley betting dens paired with resorts for the filthy rich sect trying to get away from it all and slip under the radar. Socialites hunting expensive thrills, politicians and magnates looking to hide their indiscretions. Chemists with humble shops situated above far less reputable establishments.
Yusuf had a very decent apartment, not close enough to the ocean for a view but more than close enough for the scent of it to waft in through the windows, large enough to offer plenty of privacy and plenty of work room. If Yusuf needed a holiday, he took one close to home, dipping into one of his bank accounts and going to Kizingo to live it up with the social elites for a bit simply because he could and Mombasa was too beautiful to want for anywhere else. He was fully capable of sounding like a travel brochure about that sort of thing.
Eames argued that if he was going to paint the place as being so appealing, he should be prepared to deliver. Yusuf always scoffed but obliged him anyway, albeit not in any way that would befit a typical tour guide.
It had gotten to the point that he was no longer surprised by Eames turning up in his shop every few months or so. Eames didn't mind being a little predictable, if only to Yusuf.
Alaka recognized him first, blithely hopping onto his lap and purring. Yusuf had his back to the door, hands busy with an array of bottles. Eames waited for a full ten seconds before clearing his throat. “Hullo there. I'm bored out of my skull. Got anything for that?”
“Chemistry is a noble discipline,” Yusuf said loftily, not turning around.
“Indeed it is,” agreed Eames. “Now please allow me to nobly take advantage of it.”
They'd made a routine of it before, back when Yusuf established he wouldn't use Eames for a test dummy and Eames established he wouldn't make off with half Yusuf's supply. He and Yusuf had solidified the truce by taking turns clipping each other in to try out a new compound, then toasting a chemical success afterward by breaking out the good stuff to celebrate.
Good stuff, even for a chemist, was a remarkably simple concept.
“I hope your address is the same,” Eames continued, “because I've already ordered pizza. Three of them. You have thirty minutes or less to lock up and battle the traffic.” It seemed like such a ludicrously long time to wait. Spending so much time in dreams he forgot, sometimes, how slowly time moved in the waking world.
“Bloody hell,” muttered Yusuf, clearly not sharing Eames's opinion at all, but he was already reaching for his jacket.
“Also, I'm afraid you're paying since I seem to have mislaid all the currency I exchanged and no banks are open at this hour.”
“What did you mislay it on this time?”
Eames smiled and scratched behind Alaka's ears.
Yusuf wisely allowed him no time whatsoever to answer, rushing off to leave word with his associates to keep the dreaming den running and the cat taken care of.
It was just as he had remembered, and Eames drank in each moment like time could never be long enough because so few things were. Polishing off spliff, hashish, and pizza and he relearned what Yusuf's arms were like and what his bed was like, being enfolded in softness and ease and gasping and groaning as he slid into him from behind, on their sides. Drawing it out into a long, slow, lazy fuck until one of Yusuf's hands reached around and brought him off. All capability, gentleness, lips and skin and palms and the way Yusuf somehow went about losing stodginess as he lost clothes. Exactly as he remembered. The way he was meticulous about forcing Eames off the bed in order to swap out the sheets afterward, and the way he insisted on donning a hideous robe and checking his email, only to end up snorting over some website full of stick people until Eames physically pulled him back towards the business end of the bedroom.
Face-down on the mattress, squirming and naked and the comforter down around his thighs and one of those positively fucking excellent hands slipping beneath to work him all over again until Eames's brow was damp against the pillowcase and every breath was bound up in more words than he thought he was capable of uttering. “Oh, God, that's it, just like that, perfect.”
“You've done all right for yourself these days, haven't you, doctor?” he asked later, when he'd caught his composure together somewhat and locked Yusuf against him before he could insist on remaking the bed yet again.
Yusuf made a face at him. He had never officially finished his doctorate and the one on the wall of his shop had been a gift from Eames. More solemnly, he answered, “Since January, I've sold enough opiates to kill a small town for the price of a small country. My father has been living very well.”
Eames shifted until their heads rested on the same pillow and his nose was brushing the sage-scented darkness of Yusuf's hair. “I had a job offer from some bacchanalian executive who wanted me to forge a set of twins. Couldn't do it, couldn't admit that I couldn't do it, so I ran before he knew. Won't be going back to Caracas any time soon, I can tell you that.”
“I lost a patient a month and a half ago. He wouldn't wake up, so I took him to hospital and he's been there ever since. He hasn't got any family and I've been paying for his stay rather than allowing him to go off life support.”
It would happen like this, too many puzzle pieces coming too close to forming complete images, but the world was like being wrapped in a warm, comforting blanket and nothing could ever go wrong. Yusuf like a fossilized footprint in his mind, something endlessly immutable that could never be convinced to stray by means of bribery or blackmail. It would happen like this, and Eames would permit himself a few silent seconds of lenience before drawing that line taut and easing it back.
“I once,” Eames told him, voice susurrous as the shadows shifting in the back of his mind, “won a pie bake-off with my aunt's recipe for cherry crumb.”
“I slept with the son of my host family when I stayed in Bristol. I was sixteen and had a penchant for cricket. He was captain.”
“And did you like it?” Soft, looking at him askance, letting his body arch back.
Yusuf kissed him, tasting of smoke and indulgence, and Eames hummed quietly and allowed the euphoria to buoy him up, mouth opening and allowing, tongue curling into Yusuf's mouth as his fingers curled into his hair. Wonderfully soft smiles against his throat, velvet-warm mouth against his jaw, and Yusuf looking almost childish when he drew back and fixed Eames with a rather sulky expression.
“It wasn't my fault.” Breathless, between tastes of him. “They put me up in his room and he was meant to sleep on a cot on the floor, only it wasn't comfortable at all.”
Eames felt a laugh rippling the edges of his words like a flame licking at wasps-nest paper. “Oh, really? I think I can see where this is going.”
And when he tittered, Yusuf shut him up again for several elated seconds. “Since it was more logical, we shared the bed, and he never wore more than underpants and couldn't ever keep still, so we'd smoke up and go at it.”
“And now,” said Eames, “history repeats itself.” Gloriously unbound, lolling in blankets, tangling them and Yusuf around himself and pillowing himself on anything he could. Taking another drag from the red glass hookah and feeling like he was in military school all over again, sneaking rebellious moments in wherever he could. It was a wonder the military had still wanted him, what with all the trouble he had caused.
“Another Ingraj bastard who can't keep his hands to himself,” Yusuf agreed, and drew him on top of him to illustrate the extent of his disapproval. Eyes liquid black, mouth parted and full and like heaven under Eames's own. Saying, “Oh my God,” over and over again when Eames wriggled lower under the blankets and sucked him down, skin flushed dark, incarnadine. And Yusuf watching him slide a hand up over his hip and commenting, in a voice like an overtightened guitar string, “You look like a bloody porn star.”
Eames smiled. “I've looked like worse, believe me.”
Yusuf had indiscretions of his own, aside from drugs, mostly revolving around syrupy fruit pastries and any video games that involved cars. The man possessed an abiding affinity for all things Grand Theft Auto that Eames couldn't ever quite bring himself to mock. Particularly when it involved jostling to see who could wreak the most havoc and trying to outdo each other with variations on the word fuck.
There was a lot to be said for it, wearing a pair of plaid boxer shorts and a kurta he'd stolen out of Yusuf's perpetually-ignored ironing pile and spouting things like, “Bloody flaming shitbollocks.”
And later, toppling back on the rug amidst game consoles and half-emptied bags of crisps, backs to the couch and Eames sucking remnants of chocolate wafers off Yusuf's fingers until he could hear his breath stutter and feel him tensing. He bent forward, murmuring at his ear, “You can put them somewhere other than my mouth, if you like.”
Yusuf was snickering. “It's very amusing when you think you're James Bond and then end up sounding like a woefully unqualified phone sex operator.”
In retaliation, Eames slid a hand down the front of his trousers, brought him off with what he thought was very impressive efficiency, and went out to make a drink run.
Everyone had their youthful failings. Not everyone could make a living out of them.
“Wine is not meant to come in cans,” Yusuf insisted, when Eames came back from a convenience store.
“And grown men aren't meant to come in their pants, but there's something deliciously lowbrow about both, isn't there?”
Yusuf halfheartedly shoved him against the couch arm.
“You've got too many damned pillows.” Pausing, holding a throw thoughtfully. “Do you know what would be perfect?”
“Oh,” Yusuf said, “for God's sake.”
Eames shrugged. “I wasn't aware you were so opposed to having fun.”
“You can go into a dream and build skyscrapers, so what's the point in building a pillow fort?”
“There isn't one,” Eames answered. “That's why it absolutely must be done.” He proceeded to demonstrate.
Yusuf smirked and changed the channel, but left him to it.
“The Matrix? Are you fucking joking?”
“Smoke more, speak less,” Yusuf told him, and fetched another coal for the shishah. ”One drink each time someone says 'Mr. Anderson' and one each time someone puts on or takes off a pair of sunglasses. There is a science to this. And there is a lot to drink.”
Eames could only go without work for so long without feeling antsy. He would have to line up something sooner or later. At the moment, none of it concerned him at all. He stayed, sipping canned wine under an architectural nightmare of cushions, with his head tipping against Yusuf's shoulder and something terrible on the television.
“Two drinks any time a character wearing leather exhibits impossible elasticity,” said Yusuf.
Eames smothered a very undignified giggle and drank.
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