by elfin

Baja, Mexico

(Brian’s POV)


I didn’t hear Dom come out of the house but I know he’s standing right behind me when something cold drips onto my bare chest.  Opening my eyes, sitting up, I grab the beer from his hand.  “Bastard,” I repeating, grouching, and he chuckles – that low rumble of his – as he drops into the battered beach chair beside mine, swallowing half his beer before reaching out to me.

His hand hovers half an inch from my face for a second before he drags his fingers through my hair.  He keeps looking at me with this… weird expression.  And I get it.  I understand.  He and I… it wasn’t what I’d expected either.

Not that we didn’t have a clue.  We’d been digging on each other since that first night – all meaningful stares, sharing things we couldn’t have told our best friends, saying stuff to each other just to be talkin’.  Nothin’ and no one would have got us to admit it.  Not in a million years.  We’re guys.  We like girls.  Period.

He fucked Letty with my name on his lips.  I took Mia to my bed cos in a strange way it was one way of being close to him.

That was why he introduced me to the charger just after threatening to break my neck if I broke Mia’s heart, why he chose then to tell me about his Dad and to explain why he’d beaten that guy half to death.  Cos in a way I’d pledged myself to Mia in that moment - he’d made me do it - and by telling me what he’d never told anyone else he was re-staking his claim.

Yeah, Dom.  Saw straight through you.  Wish you’d seen straight through me.  I really do.

Don’t suppose it matters now.

'Come with me,' he’d said. 

I couldn’t think why he’d want me near him after what I’d done.  With all the lies between us stripped away, was there anything left?  There’d been somethin’, that was for sure.  Something unspoken, something indefinable.  Something silent.  Best left that way.  Both of us together are like two combustible chemicals just waiting to ignite.

But in the end, what did I have to hang around for?  Tanner and Bilkins weren't about to let this one slide.  I could have said Dom put a gun to my head but it would only have given them one more charge to add to his rap sheet.  I'd made my decision.  I'd chosen my side.  Might as well accept it, go with it.  See where it leads.

The Toyota would have gotten us where we wanted to go but it was like a marker sticking out on the roads.  Might as well give the cops directions.

Dom drove us to a garage outta town.  Gotta give it to him, he'd always planned on one day having to leave in a hurry.  He handed over the key to the Toyota.  All the work we'd put into it - Jesse's engineering, Mia’s artwork, our craftsmanship - didn't count for shit now.  We couldn't keep it.  In return we picked up an inconspicuous brown Mustang.  Despite what it looked like, under the hood was a whole different story.  Yeah.  Dom had definitely planned.

We showered together at Max’s place just to save time.  Dom was injured from the crash – a couple of cracked ribs, he thought, maybe a concussion. 

So it was me driving when we hit the road.

Four straight hours, crossing the border with so much ease it seemed impossible and I was suspicious all the way through to Ensenada.  No way was Tanner letting us go.  But no way they hadn’t figured it out either.  Bilkins is dumb but not that dumb.  He knows we’d run for the border.

Dom hadn’t said more than a couple of words the entire trip but that was cool.  We both had a lot to say but I think that was the point - we both did.  Sure, I’d been lying to him about who I was.  But we both knew it was the only lie I’d told.  He was guilty after all.  I’d known it all along.  Tanner was right.  I’d known I just hadn’t wanted to admit it.  Hadn’t wanted to accept it. 

The first night, when Dom told me he’d die before he went back to jail I believed him.  I couldn’t let that happen.  I wouldn’t.  I won’t.

(Dom’s POV)

Everything changed.  In the space of a day.

Race Wars.  I’d watched Letty make two grand off some poor unsuspecting guy.  It's always been the same with her.  A lot of guys see her behind the wheel and figure she's just playing catch-up with her boyfriend.  How wrong can they get?

I took five grand off one of Tran's gang that afternoon.  So did Brian.  A strangely proud moment, watching him race my ten second car away from the line, watching him leave the other guy choking on his dust.

After that, everything went straight to hell.  My life was blown apart and all I could think of right then was the open road and listening for the sound of a chopper on our tail.  That and the man driving the car I’d stashed at Max’s a couple of months back.

Brian Spilner – O’Connor – or whatever his fuckin’ name was.  What was freakin’ me out then was that hearing him say he was a cop, out in the desert, was worse than holdin’ Jesse’s dead body in my arms.

All I could think was that he’d betrayed me, betrayed everythin’.  I’d taken him into my family and he’d fucked us over.  Except that he hadn’t.  He didn’t. 

Vince… couldn’t be helped.  He’d have died out there if Brian hadn’t risked his neck and my rage to get him airlifted out.  He’s goin’ to jail but hopefully he’ll make things easy on himself by singing like a bird once he’s sure we’re clear.  Letty and Leon headed to the border same as we did.  We’ve agreed to stay apart for now, until we’re sure we’re clear.  Besides, I’m more than happy with the company I’m keeping.

That left Mia.  The longer we drove for the more desperate I got to call her, just to let her know we were okay.  I didn’t know then if she’d care about Brian or not but I knew she’d be worried sick about me.  I left her with Jesse’s body….  I knew she’d knew what to do.

I could have blamed Brian for bringing this down on us but it’d have been a lie.  No point in deceiving myself.  I’d brought this down on us.  We’d all known sooner or later the truckers were gonna arm themselves and start fightin’ back.

Ironically, Brian had stood between us and the cops.  If it hadn’t been for him we’d all be coolin’ our asses in cells right about now, not warmin’ ‘em in Mexico.  Or maybe not….  I meant what I told him – I’d die before I’d go back.

It’s not easy to admit it but if Brian wasn’t the person he was we’d all be in jail.  Instead he’s here with me and we’re sharin’ that dream of a beach in Mexico.  Odd the way that’s turned out.  I’d always thought it would be Letty with me. 

Scares the shit outta me to think that I’m glad it’s Brian.

Once we reached Ensenada I opened my eyes and told him, “Pull in at the next diner.  Hungry.  And I need to call Mia.”

We hadn’t eaten since the chow out in the desert – Max offered sandwiches but we were too strung out to swallow anything more than black coffee. 

Crossing the border had been too easy.  Even with a couple of false passports – one of which was supposed to be Leon’s… I’d at least expected the Feds to have an APB out on us.  I know it had worried Brian for a few miles.

In the diner Brian ordered more black coffee, I had to order food for us both.  He scowled at me, told me he wasn’t hungry.

“Eat it, Brian, or I’ll shove it down your throat myself.”  Not the first time I’d wished my threats sounded more convincing when they were aimed at blondie.

Not that it was needed.  When the burgers and fries were put in front of us he tucked in like a starving man.

 “Why were you doin’ it?” I asked him, watching him eat with faint amusement.

He glanced at me, finishing his mouthful.  “Doin’ what?”

“Comin’ after me.  What was it?  Promotion?”  I couldn’t help but add, “Respect?” with a smirk.

His sideways glance was at the very least amused.  But it was a while before he answered.  “My Detective’s badge.  After we’d shaken down Tran….”

“You were in on that?”  I couldn’t believe it.  Tran’s gang was fuckin’ dangerous and my Brian….  When the hell did he become my Brian?

“Yeah, man.”  He tossed a grin my way.  “All black Kevlar and Browning Automatics.”  Shaking my head I had to shift on the sticky plastic seat.  It was like he knew he was turnin’ me on.  Sneaky little fuck.  “Tran was clean.  I knew it was you, so did Tanner.  He thought it was Mia blindin’ me to what you were doin’.  I told him, you wouldn’t go back to jail.  I think he knew then.  He told me you’d have to choose.  And so would I.”

I know the choice Brian made.  Me over that detective badge he’d wanted for however long.  Truth is, I was touched by that.

I made the call home from the payphone outside.

“Hello.”  It was a relief to hear Mia’s voice, to at least know she was okay.

“It’s me.”

“It’s not a good time now.”  I knew the cops were there just by her tone.  Brian had said they would be, waiting for me just in case I was stupid enough to return home.

“Brian’s with me.  We’re both fine.”  She might want to hear that, Brian had mentioned with a wan smile - the cops had probably told her we were both missing, that in all likelihood I had the body of a certain blond undercover cop stowed in the trunk of his own car.  It had amused me to think that the cops thought that, even for a second.  “We’re heading south.  I’ll call again soon.”

End of phone call.

Not only was the car ready to roll at Max’s but I had somewhere to go too.  Not all the cash from the hijacks had been spent on parts for the cars.  There was a house in Baja, bought outright under a false name.

That’s where we were headed.  And when we hit the road again, I told him to get some sleep.  He must’ve been wiped cos within minutes of us leavin’ the diner his breathin’ changed, became a soft snore.

I couldn’t help look at him with some kinda awe.  He’d given up everythin’.  He was running from his own friends, his own colleagues.  If he was caught – aidin’ and abettin’ – if he went to prison, his ass would belong to every fucker in the joint.

There must’ve been about a million cops looking for us and he was sleepin’ like a baby.  Like he was absolutely certain he’d made the right choice and he was willin’ to take whatever came after.

I still wanted to tear his pretty head off at that point for lyin’ to me – to us all.  But I knew I wouldn’t and so did he.  He was safe – he is safe - and somehow even then he knew it.

Of course he’s safe.  That smile, that cocksure attitude, saw to that three weeks ago.  ‘Dude, I almost had you.’  It’d been a long time since anyone had spoken to me with quite that much self-assurance.  If I ever ask him he’d say I drew him to me.  Mia always tells people that.  It’s not true.  I was drawn to him.  Not so much the pretty blond sitting in the store munching on tuna sandwiches (no crust) and pluckin’ up the courage to ask my sister out.  But the street racer – the guy he was when he wasn’t around Mia.

The guy he was that night when he rescued my ass.  Planned, I realised as I thought later, hard, about clues I should have picked up on.  They let him go – they let us go – to get him in, get him close to me.  How did he put it?  In my good graces.

But they couldn’t have known Tran would put in an appearance and blow the car straight to hell.  They couldn’t have known we’d walk and talk for miles until we flagged down a cab.  And then back home he just threw in a careless ‘take care’ and started off to… wherever.  Back to ‘The Racers Edge’ I guess.

It was me who invited him inside.

They put him next to me but I kept him close.

The next day when he turned up with that wreck of a Supra at the garage, that shit-eatin’ grin on his face, blue eyes sparklin’ like the ocean - just listen to me! – it was Brian who owned me, not the other way around.  Not that I was ever goin’ to tell Mia that.  She’d have fried my balls in garlic and fed them to me.  Besides, I have a reputation to keep up.

Or I had.

Not that it ever had any impact on Brian.  He’s the only guy who’s never seemed afraid of me.  Not ever. 

Not even when we caught him sniffing around Hector’s.  Should have known then, that horseshit excuse he fed us.  But I didn’t want to believe my new-found goldenboy was a cop.

And not when he ID’d himself as a narc right in front of me. 

I wanted to kill him then.  But Vince’s life depended on him, and afterwards – standing in the driveway aiming at one another, shotgun against handgun – I’d lost the fire I needed to wrap my hands around his throat or pump a slug into his chest.  How could I?

I couldn’t ever hurt him.  I couldn’t even smack him one. 

It was my fault although I’ll deny it until the day I die.  Some part of me must’ve known about him, what he was.  Out at the beach that morning in the Supra, him telling me he wanted in on whatever I was in on.  The trucks.  Every instinct I had should have been screamin’ ‘COP!!!’ but all I could think was that I wanted to bring him in on it.  I wanted him there at my side, wanted to draw him closer, keep him with me.  I wasn’t thinking straight then and I sure ain’t now.

It’s that disarming smile of his.  It still throws me sometimes.  He looks like an angel and drives like the devil.  And God help me, I’ve never felt this way about anyone before.

(Brian’s POV)

For an adrenaline junkie, Dom can be as lazy as they come. 

For me it’s great.  I can sit here while he’s working on his tan, lookin’ my fill.

We’re waiting for the parts to turn up for the cars sitting in the small garage attached to this place.  We’re waiting for Leon to make contact.  We’re waiting for a couple of favours Dom’s called in to pay up.

We’re waiting.  That’s the reason – one of two reasons – he’s happy to sit still for a couple of hours.

We’re safe, relatively speaking.  There’s a legit circuit down here and I think Dom’s interested.  I know I am.  But at the moment it’s not racing that’s occupying either of us.

It’s fucking.

The other reason we’re happy to sit and chill this afternoon is that we’re both too exhausted and too sore to do anythin’ else.

What actually started as a fight in the garage almost became something approximating rape; neither of us realising the other was so aroused we were both ready to shoot in our shorts.

We were supposed to working out some of the crap between us – fighting it out.  So many lies, so much betrayal.  We might trust one another on some level but there are a lot of levels we don’t.  One or two less now for sure.

Next thing I know he’s got us up against the fender of the Mustang, his groin pressing into mine and we both froze.  His fist that I think was meant for my face uncurled around my crotch and in the next few insane minutes we were up on the hood of the car, scrabbling to connect dick to dick.

It was frenzied, no grace, no style.  Absolutely no tenderness.  We came in seconds, all over pawing fingers, breathing like oxygen-starved madmen, staring at one another like we’d just become total strangers.

As if things weren’t complicated enough.  And for a couple of heartbeats I thought we’d fucked things up so much it would be impossible to untangle the web we’d made.

Then Dom smiled.  As simple as that.  And he said, ‘That was a long time comin’, Bri.  Don’t sweat it.’

I wasn’t sure after that.  But Dom seemed to be.  He moved into my personal space and stayed there, leaning against my back in the kitchen, a casual arm around my shoulders in the garage, a hand on my ass on the stairs.

We messed about, nothin’ serious, nothin’ heavy.  Until a couple of days ago when he went out with the Mustang and came back with a Mazda RX-7.  Typical.  I had to smile, had to laugh.

And then, apparently, he had to fuck me on the hood.  And suddenly he was all tender kisses, sweet caresses and more consideration than I’d give to a couple of heavy, ready to blow NOS canisters.

God forbid he should leave marks on the angel’s perfect skin.  Yeah, I know how he thinks of me.  Had to bite his shoulder just to get him to exert some pressure in some important places.

It took a whole can of engine oil just to get him up against my ass.  But once he was inside, once he was buried balls-deep and I could feel him hard and hot inside me, tearing me apart in the best way possible, he lost the iron control and started to move.  Clutching my T-shirt with one hand, his other curled in my hair almost obsessively, he bit the back of my neck and nibbled on my ear as he pounded into me, crushing me against the cold metal of the car’s hood, my face up against the windshield.

I was more aroused than I’d ever been in my entire life.  I kept making these little noises and as embarrassed as I was about them he lapped them up.

He came inside me and I came, my dick jacked off by the slide of warm metal and my own sweat-slick skin.

And as he lay on my back panting for breath he whispered he loved me.

I have no idea how or why.  But after that I kinda knew.  I just wasn’t sure about my own feelings.  I’m still not.

(Dom’s POV)

These last couple of weeks life’s fucked with my mind.  Catching Brian’s grin as he rolls out from under the Mazda makes me realise how lucky I’ve been.

Lucky he was the cop the Feds chose to send after us.  Lucky he’s a resilient kid who doesn’t waste effort thinkin’ about how things might have turned out if he’d made a different choice.

Lucky because believe it or not, they couldn’t pin the hijackings on Vince.  No evidence.  He kept his mouth shut and I didn’t know it but Brian had told the medics in the chopper that Vince had been attacked by a hitchhiker he’d picked up.  Brian had just been passin’ by.

The truck driver could only swear to three black cars - two of which the cops discovered the wrecks of but they weren’t registered to anyone and there were no prints – and an orange one, which had vanished off the face of the earth.  He wasn’t goin’ to admit to carrying a shot gun in his cab and firin’ it with intent to kill so they couldn’t get Vince on the gunshot wound either.

I’d have paid to see the look on their faces when Vince had walked free.

In no immediate danger, Vince let us know he was gonna stay in California until the heat was off and then come down to join us.

Not sure what he’s gonna make of me and Brian, what any of them are gonna make of us.  I don’t care.  They’ll deal or they’ll leave.

For as long as I can remember they’ve looked at me and seen a big brother, a fellow racer, someone to lead so they can follow.  Brian looks at me like I’m lunch.  I love the way he looks at me.

I’m keepin’ him.  End of story.