m/m urban fantasy
Chapter 2: Pinned
Luke awoke to a sharp metallic vibration in his mind and he opened his eyes in confusion. His dragonlings were flying in circles around him exuding anger and trying to protect him from something. Someone. Eric was at the door and Luke winced and shook his head, trying to think amidst the roaring vibration.
“Stop,” he managed to say.
The dragonlings instantly became sweet and landed on him and cooed. He sat up and mentally scolded them for being so loud in his mind that he couldn’t think. They needed to learn to control their volume. Protecting him was good, but not to the extent that it disabled him. They nuzzled him. They were confused and missed their mother. He reassured them. He had fed them immediately before drifting off to sleep so they weren’t hungry, but they were scared and it took several minutes to calm them down. The entire time he was aware of Eric watching him.
When the dragonlings were taken care of and he had even convinced them to sleep for a bit, he stood up and took two steps towards Eric, crossing his arms and scowling.
“What do you want?”
“You didn’t eat all day at the café and it’s been several hours since then. You have to be starving. Come eat with me.”
Luke glared. It hadn’t taken him long to figure out that the waitress had been spying on him. She had seen him with Daniel before, after all. And he was starving. He had already left the room to use the bathroom, but leaving it for more than that seemed a betrayal.
“You can bring me food here if you don’t want me to starve,” he said, hoping Eric didn’t want him to starve.
“I want to eat with you,” Eric said. “And they won’t let me in.”
Luke stared at him. He couldn’t figure out why Eric wanted to eat with him. Eric already had his cooperation, after all. That was all Eric needed from him. But Eric kept looking at him the way Daniel occasionally looked at him, and he couldn’t figure it out. He remembered Eric stroking his cheek, and then saying that he was threatening Luke. It didn’t make sense.
“Please,” Eric said, reaching his hand out to bridge the space between them.
Luke’s gaze went from his outstretched hand to his eyes, and he felt flustered. He wanted to remember that this man was not only kidnapping him but his dragonlings as well, but Eric seemed so sincere. And he was so handsome. Luke took a hesitant step forward and accepted his hand. Eric squeezed it and led him out, making sure to close the door behind them quietly so as not to disturb the sleeping dragonlings.
Eric’s henchmen were nowhere to be seen as Eric helped him sit in a small booth at a table already set with food before sitting across from him. The food was Asian and Luke wasn’t exactly sure what all of it was but it looked delicious.
“Have you had this before?”
“No,” Luke said.
Eric showed him how to eat it without the slightest hint of condescension, and seemed genuinely happy when Luke got the hang of it. It was delicious and when Luke had finished, Eric was only partially done. Luke looked longingly at his food. Eric stopped, took Luke’s plate and left. He returned with another plate for Luke. He had truly been starving, Luke realized. When he was finally finished, he realized Eric was watching him.
“There are going to be several new customs you’ll have to learn, but you’ll get used to them,” Eric said. “And people won’t judge you.”
“You realize Daniel’s going to come after me, don’t you?”
“I would expect nothing less. But he’s not going to get you.”
Luke glanced down. “You didn’t hurt him, right? Or anyone else?”
“No. We just needed them out of the way.”
Luke felt heat rising in his cheeks. They had needed the others out of the way to grab him, and he had made himself completely vulnerable by being out in the open instead of in one of the safe houses. If he had just listened to Daniel, he wouldn’t be here now. He would be safe with Daniel. The dragonlings would be with their mother instead of clinging to the metal airplane hull.
“Why do you need me? What happened to your dragon tamer?”
“How did you become a tamer?”
Luke was startled for a moment. “What does that have to do with anything?”
“Depending on how much you know about tamers, I don’t have to explain as much. And there’s potentially a lot to explain, so it’s easier if you go first.”
Luke was puzzled, but didn’t mind. “I’d always heard dragons, but never known what they were. I was an outsider. When I was twelve I first heard one clearly. It was when the sickness first fell. She was the first to die. She called me to her so I could raise her last litter. I ran away from home to find her and luckily her tribe took me in until her dragonlings were raised. After the dragonlings left, Daniel’s tribe took me.”
“So you’ve been kidnapped before?”
“No, it was a dragon swap,” Luke said sharply, insulted that Eric would think Daniel and his tribe capable of kidnapping. “It was her last litter, as I said, and at the time Daniel had two dragons. Their tamer didn’t have the range to care for both so I went to them and she went to another tribe.”
“How old were you then?”
“How old are you now?”
Luke hesitated. There was something predatory in the way Eric asked that he didn’t like.
“How many litters have you raised for Daniel?”
“This is my third.”
“Have you lost any?”
“Of course not,” Luke said, appalled. He knew he would be devastated if he lost a dragonling. In truth it had never occurred to him that he might lose one, since they were always so content in his care. But he supposed accidents and disease did happen.
Eric tapped his fingers against his lips.
“If you were fifteen when you joined Daniel, it would have been up to him to teach you about tamers. You would have been too young before and since you weren’t raised in our society, you wouldn’t have soaked up any knowledge that way. But you’re still young. How much has he taught you?”
“He’s the leader of the tribe,” Luke said slowly, wondering if this was a trap of some sort. “He doesn’t know about dragon taming.”
Eric’s eyes narrowed and he looked furious. “He kept you in the dark, then.”
“The dragons teach me what I need to know,” Luke said angrily. He didn’t know why Eric was so mad but he knew it was because of some perceived imperfection on Daniel’s part and Luke wasn’t about to allow that. “That’s how it’s supposed to work. The dragons would have told me if it were otherwise.”
“If all you’re supposed to do is sit around and hatch dragonlings, yes, the dragons can tell you what to do just fine,” Eric said. “But that’s not what a dragon tamer does.”
Luke knew his confusion was showing. “What else would a dragon tamer do?”
Eric closed his eyes and took a deep breath and when he released it, he opened his eyes and seemed calm again.
“I apologize, Luke. You are not to blame for what you do and do not know. I can’t tell you why we lost our dragon tamer, not yet. It would be too much to explain. I will, I promise you that. Now please, come with me.”
He stood and extended his hand again. Luke took it, expecting to be taken back to his dragonlings. Instead, Eric took him to a small but lush room with a bed in it. Luke looked at Eric. A flutter of fear ran through him. Daniel had told him time and time again never to be alone with a man because men were dangerous and would take advantage of him. He already knew Eric was very dangerous. What else was Eric planning to do?
Eric pulled him forward but Luke dug his feet in and refused to enter the room. Eric sighed.
“You need rest before we get there. Real rest. You’re not going to get it lying on a metal bench. As long as you’re comfortable, your dragonlings won’t care that you’re not with them.”
Luke eyed the bed. It looked comfortable and incredibly inviting. The sheets were crumpled as if someone else had been lying on them, however, which made him suspicious. It also looked big enough for two.
“If I go in,” Luke said, “You aren’t.”
A hint of a smile played at Eric’s lips. “Oh, I’m coming in with you.”
Without warning, Eric grabbed his waist, picked him up, and threw him over his shoulder. Luke was too surprised to protest. Eric closed and locked the door, then threw Luke on the bed. Luke tried to leap up but Eric pinned him in place with his entire body. Luke gasped.
Eric’s face was inches from his, eyes boring into him, noses practically touching. He could feel the heat from Eric’s lips. Eric’s hands were pressing down on his upper arms, keeping him in place. Their chests were nearly touching. One of Eric’s legs crossed his right thigh to hold it down. The other leg lay between his and while it wasn’t pinning him directly, it was such clearly sexual positioning that it was paralyzing in a different way.
Luke was terrified and could feel his body pulsing as it tried to figure out whether to fight or flee. Eric still had that soft smile and Luke blushed. It was oddly arousing being pinned like this. Eric was studying his reaction, he realized, and blushed further. Eric shifted his hands so they weren’t pressing his arms but rather positioned on the outside of his arms. He didn’t move anything else, though.
Luke wanted to tell him to get away but with Eric’s lips so close to his, he couldn’t. He knew he could turn his head and speak but he found he didn’t want to. He trembled in confusion. His body was sending him so many mixed signals it was hard to think straight and with those beautiful dark eyes staring at him, all he could focus on was the fact that he had never been kissed and Eric’s lips were so close to his.
Eric backed away from him a little and he gulped for air. But even though he could talk now, he found he had nothing to say. Eric was so beautiful framed over him, and even though he knew he was in danger he didn’t want this moment to end. Finally, Eric spoke.
“Do you want me to leave?”
Luke stared at him in confusion. He was tired of being confused around Eric. The man was infuriating with how confusing he was. First he threw Luke into a bed and pinned him in place, now he was asking if Luke wanted him to go?
Eric patiently repeated the question and Luke bit his lip. He knew the answer he should give. The answer he had to give. It was the only answer he could give in these circumstances. Daniel would kill him otherwise.
“No,” Eric said, to Luke’s surprise. “I don’t care what he thinks. Do you want me to leave, Luke?”
Those dark eyes were staring into his again and Luke shivered. He knew his answer but he was afraid to give it. Ever since he was twelve he had been under someone’s control. He hadn’t been allowed to make decisions for himself. Aaron, his first leader, had been cautious with him, and Daniel had been strict. He knew both had been watching out for him. But neither had ever really taken into account what he wanted. It was frightening to have that kind of control.
“Should I leave, Luke?” Eric asked again, gently.
“No,” Luke whispered.
Eric shifted his weight so that one of his hands was free to stroke Luke’s face. He stroked Luke’s cheek and brushed back some of his hair before cradling his jaw. Luke leaned into the caress. Sometimes Daniel touched him like this, but it was rare and Luke craved it. Whenever he did, Luke would dream about the touch for days afterward.
“Tell me what you want, Luke,” Eric said softly, those dark eyes still gazing into his.
Luke blushed. Again, he instantly knew the answer but this time he knew it was completely inappropriate. He didn’t need Daniel to tell him; it would be obvious to anyone. Eric grinned.
“Something naughty, I see. I won’t judge you. Tell me.”
Luke turned his head to the side but glanced back to see if Eric was still watching him. He was. Luke let his eyes lower to Eric’s lips and linger there. He ached to feel them. He blushed again and shut his eyes. He knew from Eric’s confident positioning that Eric was sexually experienced and might laugh at his request, or refuse it. He felt so insecure and inexperienced.
The hand on his jaw drew his head back until he was facing Eric again and he hesitantly opened his eyes. The grin had vanished from Eric’s face.
“It’s all right, Luke. Tell me.”
He wanted it so badly. He gathered all of his courage. After all, the worst that could happen was that Eric would laugh and say no.
“I want my first kiss to be with you,” he said, trying to sound confident but barely managing more than a whisper.
Surprise flickered across Eric’s face, then the man became tender. He stroked his thumb across Luke’s cheekbone and Luke was taken aback by how gentle he seemed.
“I would be honored,” Eric said in a serious voice.
Luke let out a breath. He hadn’t laughed, and he hadn’t refused. Now Luke was nervous, because he felt totally unprepared and he had no idea what was about to happen. Would Eric just kiss him? Would Eric warn him? What would the kiss feel like? He had read about kisses in books and seen them in movies, but he had never seen real people kiss. He knew Daniel would have liked to shield him from the books and movies if he could, but while Daniel could outlaw straight out romances, he didn’t prevent Luke from other genres and nearly every book and movie had some sort of romance in it. He suspected if Daniel knew that he would have banned books and movies completely, but luckily Daniel was too busy with the tribe to bother himself with popular culture. He did put heavy restrictions on Luke’s internet use, though, and on his cell phone.
“Don’t worry, Luke,” Eric said. “I won’t kiss you until you invite me.”
“I don’t know how,” Luke said, scared. He wasn’t talking about the invitation and Eric clearly knew it.
“It’s okay,” Eric said gently. “I’ll guide you. Hold me.”
Luke realized he could move his arms. He reached up and cautiously set his hands on Eric’s shoulders. The fabric was silky and he could feel strong muscles underneath. He took a deep breath. He wanted it. He did. He was just so scared. But as he looked at Eric, at those eyes that were so unexpectedly warm, he realized he wasn’t as scared as he thought he’d be. Those eyes wouldn’t hurt him.
He slid his hands behind Eric’s neck and shut his eyes, raising his lips towards those beautiful lips he wanted so badly. The hand on his jaw glided behind his head and supported him upward until he could feel the heat of those lips, then they locked onto his. Eric’s lips were silky and smooth and caressed him deliciously for several long moments as he clung to the man. Then he felt something else caressing him and realized with a start that it was Eric’s tongue. His tongue traced the outlines of Luke’s lips and he relaxed against Eric, luxuriating in the pleasure, and then Eric’s tongue dove between his lips. Luke opened his mouth without thinking and Eric’s grip on his neck grew tighter as Eric began really kissing him.
At first Eric did all the work as Luke clung to him and nearly drowned in the sensations, but Luke didn’t want to be the helpless victim in this kiss. He wanted to kiss back. As Eric touched places that made him moan, he attempted to do the same to Eric. At first he failed, he knew, but it seemed like Eric was guiding him, teaching him, and soon he could feel Eric pressing against his body, hand tightly clutching his hair as Eric moaned as well.
He felt empowered by the kiss, and extremely turned on. He was aroused and he knew that with Eric’s leg between his legs, Eric knew exactly how aroused he was. Eric must have been monitoring that because just before Luke worried he would have to pull away or risk it being a problem, the kissing slowed in intensity. Finally, Eric broke away, pecked him on the lips, and Luke felt him lean back.
Luke opened his eyes. His lips felt swollen in the most pleasant way imaginable and his heart was pounding. Eric wore a gentle smile and there were crinkles at the corners of his eyes that Luke hadn’t noticed before. He was young, though, probably only a few years older than Luke. He must smile a lot. Luke couldn’t help but smile back, though he blushed when he did it.
“That’s the first time I’ve seen you smile,” Eric said. “Now I do want you to get rest. Sleep as long as you want. No one will disturb you and you can return to your dragonlings when you’re ready.”
Luke nodded, exhaustion already creeping over him. He knew the dragonlings were all right. They were awake and extremely curious about what he had just been doing, but they were fine. They would settle into sleep again as soon as he did. Eric kissed him gently on the lips one more time before standing. He lingered in the doorway for a moment and seemed about to say something, but then left and shut the door without a word. Luke closed his eyes and clutched the pillow to his lips, trying to relive every moment of his first kiss.