Title: Semblance Of Relative Dimension In Dreamspace
Pairing: Arthur/Eames
Rating: NC-17
Word Count: 11289
Summary: Somehow, Eames cajoles Arthur into watching a few episodes of Doctor Who with him. Little does Arthur know, that's just the beginning.
Notes: Warning for lots of Doctor Who references. Written for [info]reinventweather, who was patient enough to wait almost a year for me to deliver. You rock, dear, and I hope you like this. Thanks to [info]la_victorienne and [info]frek for reading through this for me. :)

Arthur's eyes slide closed, and in the next moment he finds himself walking down the sidewalk in a suburban town, Eames already walking in step beside him. "No wonder the son is looking for a means of escape," Arthur says as they approach the front door of the house. "This place is far too small for four people to live in comfortably."

Eames opens the door with a flourish, gesturing Arthur ahead of him. "It's bigger on the inside," he says, waggling his eyebrows.

Arthur raises an eyebrow. "Is that supposed to be some weird form of innuendo?" he asks, moving past the door.

Eames' eyes widen. "Don't tell me you've never seen Doctor Who."

Arthur shoots Eames an unamused look. "Hasn't that show been on since the sixties?"

Arthur is busy examining the interior space, so he almost misses Eames clutching his chest dramatically. "Arthur, you're breaking my heart! You really must let me educate you."

"I don't have time to sit around and watch TV, Eames. I have a job to do and if I'm not mistaken, so do you."

Eames huffs, exasperated. "There's more to life than the job, Arthur. Surely even you find the time to relax once in a while."

"Yes, Eames, even I, the most unimaginative being in the universe, make use of my downtime. I just don't intend to let you dictate how I use it." He picks up a plate from the kitchen table, comparing it to those he saw in the house. After a pause, he calls over his shoulder, "Oh, and don't call me Shirley."

Arthur smirks when Eames doesn't reply right away, knowing he's caught him by surprise. "So you do have some knowledge of pop culture," Eames says, examining the tablecloth with a slight frown.

"Just not in your carefully-selected areas of interest. My sincerest apologies." Arthur shakes his head, pulling at the tablecloth. "It hangs lower than this. Over their knees while they're eating."

Eames nods. "Yes, I remember now. The dog was tugging on it during our surveillance."

Arthur smiles to himself at that, already moving on to the living room. "This couch is all wrong," he shouts back at Eames. He laughs as Eames' groan carries over from the next room.

"There's just no pleasing you, is there, Arthur?" Eames asks, joining him in the living room. "I invite you into the privacy of my home, and all you do is insult my tablecloths and upholstery."

"This place is far too cookie-cutter for me to believe you would even pretend to live here."

Eames nods, conciliatory, dropping down onto the cushions. "You've got me there."

Arthur watches in amusement as Eames works to pinpoint what exactly is wrong with the couch. He examines the pattern, fluffs the cushions, even checks the height of it. Arthur doesn't bother to hide his enjoyment when Eames scowls and says, "Fine, I give up. Go on, we don't have all day; what's wrong with the couch?"

Arthur walks to the middle cushion, moving to sit down and therefore forcing Eames to the left side. "Hm," he says, looking around. He reaches for the remote and points it at the TV. "Let's see if your show is on."

"Bloody hell," Eames says quietly. He only curses when he knows Arthur is right.

At first glance, if you were just passing through, the couch should look perfectly positioned. But then there's the minor fact that, at this angle, the person sitting at the far left has their view of the TV obscured by a rather poorly placed low-hanging light fixture. The couch should be shifted about six feet to the right, as Eames has clearly realized.

"Don't expect me to do any of your heavy lifting," Arthur says, pushing off of the couch.

"You take some sort of sick pleasure in this," Eames says, utilizing the dream to move the couch to its proper position.

Two hours of dream time later, Arthur blinks awake in the warehouse, feeling much more confident about the job at the end of the week.

Eames hangs around as Arthur gathers his things, and Arthur intends to ignore him and head out, except Eames clears his throat and approaches him directly.

"Was there something else?" Arthur asks coolly, stopping just short of checking his watch.

"You should come back with me," Eames proposes. "We can pick up some dinner on the way, and I'll introduce you to the magnificent world of Doctor Who."

Arthur arches an eyebrow. "What makes you think I don't have plans?"

"You just told me you no longer had to bother with poring over your surveillance notes tonight. Those were your plans, and you canceled them."

Damn. He'd forgotten about that.

"Come on, Arthur. It's just one night of relaxation. I'm fairly sure it won't kill you."

Arthur feels the corner of his mouth twitching upwards. "I'd hate to take the chance, though. My untimely demise would ruin the execution of this job."
Eames smiles, sensing that the odds are tipping in his favor. "If you don't like it, you don't have to watch any more. I won't even mention it again."

It's the thought of the alternative that convinces him. He'd never be able to work a job with Eames again without hearing about how excellent Doctor Who is and how he's missing out. With a sigh, he says, "Fine."


Doctor Who, it turns out, is rather strange, but Arthur does enjoy it. It reminds him of the old Star Trek reruns he used to watch as a kid, so any giddiness he derives from it is probably just from the nostalgia. He never would have taken Eames for a sci-fi fan, though.

They watch the first three episodes on Eames' shitty portable TV while they eat takeout food. At first, Eames quotes most of the episode under his breath, but when Arthur snaps at him to keep quiet, Eames obeys.

Eames is eager to hear his opinion once they finish "The Unquiet Dead", but Arthur downplays it. Truthfully, he thinks that show is interesting, but he absolutely does not have time to watch five seasons of some sci-fi show in his free time, especially when he discovers Eames wants to watch it with him.

"We don't have to be together to watch it," Eames says. "We could use Skype! I know you have Skype, Arthur, I've seen the icon on your laptop."

Arthur likes the idea of Eames watching him watch TV even less, so he shoots that idea down immediately. "Sorry, Eames. Not interested."

After a few more minutes of Eames arguing fruitlessly, he finally gives up. As Arthur heads back to his hotel, he wonders why Eames was so determined for him to watch some show. Even if it is clearly Eames' favorite show, why does he need to share it with Arthur of all people?

Arthur shakes his head. Eames is certainly a mystery, one that he doesn't think he'll solve anytime soon.


They're 75% done with the job when things start going to shit. Eames has done his bit with the forgery in the house, and the father has gone to the mall as planned. But something must have happened, because suddenly the shoppers start turning vicious, backing Arthur into a corner of the nondescript kitchen shop where he'd been keeping watch.

Creating anything is far too risky with so many eyes intent on him, and Arthur mentally calculates how much time his team will be left without his defense if he's killed. But then with a loud bang, the door to his left unlocks and slides open.

Eames is there, eyes bright as he grabs Arthur's hand and says, "Run."

Arthur lets him lead the way until they hit the elevator, then he yanks his hand back. "You son of a bitch. You're enjoying this."

"Always," Eames says, beaming. He holds his hand out. "Nice to meet you, Arthur. I'm Eames. Run for your life!"

Arthur only stares at his hand, chagrined. "You would make yourself the Doctor in this scenario."

Eames hums, looking contemplative, and drops his hand. "I could never be the Doctor, not really. Though I certainly appreciate the comparison," he says, grinning cheekily.

The job is a success, in the end, when Arthur is able to cut in and draw away the projections from the father. Once they're in the clear, the extractor thanks Arthur for saving his ass, and Arthur defers to Eames saving his.

Eames looks at Arthur like he can't quite believe his words, but Arthur has always given credit where credit is due.

Still, Arthur begins to wish he'd kept his mouth shut when Eames sticks with him even after the rest of the team parts ways. He tells Arthur about a job in Rio, a quick, one-off thing that will take less than two weeks, citing that Arthur owes him and that he could show Arthur exactly why he's wrong about Eames being the Doctor.

Arthur reluctantly agrees, but he makes it clear to Eames: he's only accepting the job because he doesn't have another lined up. It has nothing to do with Eames and his Doctor Who obsession, and he's not agreeing to squander away his free time watching it.

And yet somehow, a week later, Arthur finds himself sitting in Eames' hotel room in Rio, watching the fourth episode. He's fairly certain Eames had used the excuse of a new discovery in his research to lure him here, but at least he'd followed through with the information before switching on the TV.

When it turns out to be a two-parter, Arthur purses his lips and agrees to watch the next one.

"I have a question," Arthur says when the credits begin to roll.

Delighted, Eames leans forward in his seat and says, "Yes?"

"I've seen an episode of Doctor Who before," Arthur begins, pointing at the screen, "but that guy wasn't in it."

"Ah," Eames says, sitting up straight.

"There was someone else," he recalls, "playing the Doctor. Is there more than one Doctor?"

Eames looks uncertain, so Arthur continues. "Or am I remembering it wrong?"

"No, you're right, I'm just trying to think of how to answer without giving it all away." Arthur wants to say that it doesn't matter, that he can give away as much as he wants, but somewhere in the back of his mind he knows it matters to Eames.

After a pause, Eames explains regeneration to Arthur. "So if he were to get fatally wounded, he has the ability to regenerate and stay alive, but the cost is that he will be an entirely new person, personality-wise."

The corners of Arthur's mouth turn down. "So it's just a ploy for the show to keep going even when the actors stop?"

Eames' smile is rather sad when he replies. "Maybe, but it's an integral part of the show. You'll find out, eventually, if you keep watching."

He looks so earnest that Arthur can do nothing more than nod in response.


Over the course of the job, they watch an episode here and there. Arthur admittedly takes a liking the show, especially the Doctor's smiling face. Despite Eames' arguments to the contrary, the Doctor still reminds Arthur a lot of Eames.

They're watching an episode called "The Long Game" after a long day of work, and Arthur finds himself zoning out a bit. He shifts on the couch every now and then, forcing his attention on the screen and ignoring Eames when he glances in Arthur's direction. Arthur resolves to leave just as soon as the episode is over and stop coming over here so often.

The next thing he knows, he's waking up, his head tilted at an awkward angle. He keeps his eyes shut as he gets his bearings, remembering the episode distantly. He can hear the typing of computer keys from very close.

"You're awake," Eames says quietly, his voice a low rumble above Arthur's head.

Arthur bolts upright, off of Eames' shoulder, his neck protesting the movement. "You should have woken me up," he says groggily as he massages the pain from his neck.

Eames continues typing for a moment before saving his work and closing the laptop. He looks at Arthur with a fond expression, but Arthur just glares at him as he rubs his eyes.

"You should crash here," Eames says. "Take the bed. I'll sleep on the couch."

Arthur shakes his head firmly.

"Arthur, you're knackered. There's no reason to go back to yours."

"Better to go now then to have to deal with it in the morning," Arthur protests, reaching for his coat.

Eames stands with him, stretching, and Arthur's eyes follow the movement of his body absently. "I'd be happy to bring your coffee to you in bed if you'd like," he says, smiling softly.

"You don't want to mess with my morning routine," Arthur says, mouth quirking up in a smile.

"You just want to go back to your posh hotel down the way," Eames says, moving past Arthur to open the door.

Arthur fixes him with a solemn expression, voice deadpan as he says, "They put mints on my pillow and everything."

He shares a smile with Eames, briefly, before heading out into the night. When he gets to his room, he has an email from Eames that simply says, 'have a fancy mint on me tonight love. Doctors orders'.


Arthur meets up with Eames the next night to go over some research relevant to Eames' forgery, and when it's still early and Eames says, "More Who?" Arthur can't think of an excuse why not.

Eames pops in the DVD while Arthur puts away his laptop, and he's already got it queued up as Arthur joins him on the couch.

"Wait," he says, reaching across Eames for the remote and pausing the episode. "I never saw the end of the last one."

Eames' eyebrows shoot up. "I didn't think you cared," he says, clearly pleased.

Arthur rolls his eyes. "If I'm going to keep up with this show, I can't just skip episodes."

"Right, of course not," Eames says, a smile playing on his lips as he presses the button to skip back to the episode before. They watch the episode all the way through and the next one for good measure.

It's the last one they watch together for several days, because Arthur has no reason to visit Eames' hotel, and he doesn't wish to encourage the obsession.

But then Eames has a particularly bad day on the job, arguing with the architect (and, in Arthur's opinion, Eames is right), so when Eames invites him over at the end of the day, Arthur says yes.

They pick up food on the way, and Arthur listens to Eames rant for most of the meal. After that, they get lost in conversation, both about the job and, to Arthur's surprise, their own lives. When Arthur realizes how late it's gotten, he suggests, "One episode before I leave?"

The name of the episode is "The Empty Child", and Arthur is on the edge of his seat when the episode ends.

"It's a cliffhanger?" Arthur asks, outraged.

Eames chuckles. "It's not going anywhere. We can watch the second part tomorrow."

Arthur shakes his head, glancing at his watch in annoyance. "You should have told me it was two parts. Now we've got to watch the next one."

Eames looks mildly surprised. "It's kind of late. I'd hate for you to fall asleep again."

Arthur takes the remote from him with a glare. "I'm not going to fall asleep. And if you're worried about falling asleep yourself, go right ahead. It's not as if you haven't seen it."

Eames drapes his arm around the back of the couch, settling in. "You still don't get it, do you, Arthur?"

Arthur ignores him and presses play.


A week later, they finish "Parting of the Ways", and Arthur is outraged.

"I told you he regenerates," Eames says mildly, as if cautious of Arthur's sudden shift in mood.

"You didn't tell me it was going to happen so soon," Arthur emphasizes. "I didn't expect him to only be around for one season."

"If I told you what was to happen, what would be the point of watching it?"

Eames explains, then, about all the past Doctors. How that was the Ninth Doctor and now he's become the Tenth. Arthur doesn't really want to hear it, though, and he doesn't like that there's a new one already. He was just getting used to the old one.

Eames pats Arthur on the knee. "If it's any consolation, I was right miffed myself when it happened."

He pushes off from the couch, milling about the kitchenette for a few minutes while Arthur processes everything he just watched. When he shakes himself out of his reverie and joins Eames, the coffee is just about done. Arthur had been considering heading back, but Eames doesn't drink coffee, so he feels obligated to stay at least a few minutes.

A few minutes turns into a few hours as Eames begins talking through the structure of the dream with Arthur. He's clearly been researching on his own, mistrusting of the architect or at least unwilling to rely on his incompetence, a fact which Arthur has to admire. He says as much to Eames, who, naturally, takes it as a veiled insult.

In the final days of preparation, Arthur finds himself with enough free time that he agrees to watch some more Doctor Who. He's hesitant to accept the Tenth Doctor, but he finds himself laughing and enjoying his mannerisms quickly as they watch the Christmas episode.

The next day, the whole team goes into the dream. Arthur is careful to match the architect's specifications, walking through with him as Eames hangs back with the extractor, talking quietly.

They're in a corporate office that largely resembles that of the mark. It more or less matches the building exactly, a fact that the architect has emphasized while Eames argues the obvious dangers of this approach.

"And be sure to close this off," the architect says pointedly, gesturing to the guardrail that overlooks the atrium and shooting a snooty look back at Eames.

"It is closed off," Arthur points out, brushing past him to head up to the next level.

Eames follows close behind as the architect stands there, looking chagrined that Arthur didn't give him an opportunity to gloat. Eames sidles up next to Arthur, a hand on his arm briefly as he murmurs, "Rude and not ginger."

Arthur fights a smile. "Can we cut off his hand?"

Eames glances back with a contemplative look. "Best not. If it grows back then we'll really be in trouble."

Arthur feels comfortable enough with the dream to wrap it up there, but he shares a look with Eames to confirm that they'll be doing their own personal dream critique as usual tonight.

Back at his hotel, Eames unearths a PASIV device from a secret compartment in his suitcase, and they plug in.

This time, the guard rail is not closed off, and Arthur is eager to test if Eames' theory works.

"What's the best way to provoke your projections without changing the dream structure?"

"Do something unexpected," Eames says, eyes challenging.

After several long minutes of milling about and testing out the mood of the place, Arthur decides to do a shoddy forgery of Eames.

"Not exactly what I had in mind," Eames says, turning to run with Arthur as the projections start advancing, "but quite flattering nonetheless."

The projections are hot on their trail as they approach the atrium, pouring out of offices to form a mob. Arthur feels awkward in the new form, but he keeps his composure and jumps to the concealed staircase just off of the ledge, Eames right behind him.

As predicted, the projections tumble past the guard rail, with a few smarter ones hanging back at the edge. They look particularly violent, but can't figure out the trick of how Arthur and Eames got to that point. Arthur slips back into his own skin, grinning triumphantly at Eames.


They accomplish the job as planned, with Eames' modification working in the extractor's favor. It's still early in the day when they get done, so as a result of his good mood, Arthur agrees to watch a few more episodes before heading out. Eames never quite asks where Arthur is going, and Arthur doesn't offer the information.

When Arthur's phone rings a few weeks later, he mentally traces the number back to an extractor he has worked with before in Brisbane. Arthur answers, listens to the details of the job and agrees readily, already heading for his laptop to book a flight and find a temporary apartment.

The phone rings again thirty minutes later, displaying one of Eames' many numbers. A bit surprised to hear from him again so soon, Arthur answers quickly. "If this is about a job, I've already accepted one to span the next two months."

"Hello to you too, Arthur," Eames says, smile evident in his voice. Eames only ever calls to invite him on a job, so Arthur doesn't know quite what to make of the pleasantry. "I'm aware of the two month deal. I just got off the line with Barbara myself."

Arthur raises his eyebrows. Thinking it over again, he supposes the extraction will be simpler with the help of a forger. They could certainly pull it off without one, but if the employer is willing to pay, this will help.

"The world of dreamsharing is far too small," Arthur says, "if it keeps throwing me back at you."

"I think the issue is that we're both far too good. I'm afraid you'll either have to start failing at your job or get used to me, darling."

"Actually," Arthur continues, still thinking it over, "if you were to take over the role of dreamer for the second level, the architect wouldn't have to enter the dream at all."

"As much as I would love to talk shop with you all evening, Arthur, that is not actually the reason that I called. I've found a lovely two-bedroom flat a close walk from Barb's usual headquarters. I wondered if you would like to share it for the duration."

Arthur is more than a little surprised at the offer. After a pause, he says, "Eames, you and I sharing an apartment is a bad idea. I get up early in the mornings, and I have very defined routines that I do not like to be broken."

"Naturally," Eames agrees. "I can accommodate your routines, darling, and I won't keep you up late at night. Unless you decide you want me to, which is perfectly agreeable with me."

Arthur rolls his eyes. "Living in the same apartment does not mean we are going to watch Doctor Who all the time," he says, catching Eames' implication. "I do a lot of my work on my own, and I can't afford to be interrupted. The job can't afford me to fall behind." Despite his protests, though, he supposes it would be more convenient. He and Eames both do quite a bit of work outside of the daily meetings, and it would be easier to coordinate their research if they were in the same place.

"Yes, I appreciate the observance, Arthur. I had momentarily forgotten you were such a stick-in-the-mud. Good thing you reminded me."

"You're the one who wants me as a roommate. I'm merely pointing out the differences in our living habits."

Still, Eames manages to convince him of the merits, and in a matter of days, Arthur finds himself standing in front of the apartment door, waiting for Eames to answer.

"That couch is hideous," is Arthur's first observation as he passes through the living area.

"I had it shipped in especially for you," Eames says, fingers sliding across the armrest in a gesture reminiscent of a caress. "I know how much you love plaid."

Arthur rolls his eyes, walking into his bedroom and dropping both duffel bags next to the bed. "On the Irish, maybe, but not on my couch."

Eames follows, leaning Arthur's suitcase against the far wall and dutifully depositing his messenger bag on his desk. Arthur is mildly impressed that he knew how Arthur organized his things.

"The refrigerator is well-stocked," Eames says as Arthur begins making up his bed. "We can take turns buying groceries if you like, or alternately we could split the space. You've got your own bathroom, laundry's downstairs, and I hereby promise not to keep you awake with my nightly dramatic Shakespeare retellings over Skype or 'whatever it is I get up to at night.'" He smirks. "Does that meet all of your demands?"

"You forgot about the small animals and children policy," Arthur reminds him. He pulls the sheet tight over the mattress, tucking in the corners precisely. He can feel Eames' eyes following his every movement.

Eames pulls the pockets out of his jeans, gesturing to them. "As you can see, I have no small animals or children on my person, and if there are any scurrying around the flat, I certainly didn't put them there."

Arthur unfolds the comforter with a flourish, spreading it out over the bed. "Then I suppose, Mr. Eames, we're all set." He pulls the blanket straight and turns to Eames, offering his hand.

Eames shakes it, smirk playing at his lips. He tilts his head just slightly and says quietly, "Your comforter is uneven."

Arthur drops his hand and shoves him toward the door. "Out of my room, Eames," he says.

Eames is still laughing when Arthur shuts the door. Arthur finds himself smiling to himself even as he straightens the bedspread.


Living with Eames is a lot less annoying than Arthur would have expected, but then again, Arthur never expected he'd be sharing living quarters with Eames. For the most part, Eames leaves him to his own devices, and he's always available when Arthur wants to talk about something for the job.

As a concession, Arthur makes time for them to watch an episode of Doctor Who here and there. Over time, Arthur develops a special liking for the Tenth Doctor, and he gets reasonably upset when the Doctor has to leave Rose at the end of "Doomsday". Mostly, though, the two of them sit on the apartment's hideous couch and trade sarcastic commentary about whatever is happening onscreen.

Initially, most of their time on the job is spent with the architect. Barbara is another extractor who is a fan of a dream within a dream, and Arthur is in charge of the first level, a park that has particular significance for the mark, while Eames will handle the second, a generic bank where the mark will hopefully hide away her secrets for Barbara to uncover.

A couple of weeks in, they get to the point where Arthur needs more information on both the park and how the mark interacts there, so he makes plans to spend the afternoon there. He's mildly surprised when Eames volunteers to go with him, sarcastic argument notwithstanding.

"This way," Eames says with a smirk, "you won't be the creepy bloke sitting alone on a park bench staring at a single mother all day."

Arthur's eyebrows shoot up. "You'd know all about that, I suppose." Eames tilts his head to the side as if in agreement. "I intended to bring a book, you know."

Eames waves a hand. "Makes it worse, the creepy staring. You're much better off being there with someone. Conversation gives you the excuse to let your eyes wander," and he's proving his point by glancing over to where Barbara is documenting their game plan so far. A smile appears on his face as he continues, "Plus, you still haven't given me your full opinion on these last few episodes of our show."

"Ah," Arthur says. "Now the truth comes out."

Eames is full of surprises the next day, though. When Arthur emerges from his room, Eames is not only ready to go, he has breakfast from the little place around the corner and a cup of coffee for Arthur.

Arthur finishes rolling up his sleeves and accepts the offering gratefully, feeling a bit unsure what has brought the act of kindness on.

Normally these type of stakeouts drag on, especially when the mark doesn't bother to show up for a few hours, but Arthur finds the time passing quickly today.

"You still haven't spoken to your feelings on Ms. Martha Jones," Eames says at one point.

Arthur shrugs, glancing around the park again out of habit. "She's an intelligent, confident woman. I've enjoyed her so far. But I think she'd have much better luck in life if she'd just let the Doctor go."

Eames looks at him seriously. "You can't help who you fall in love with, Arthur."

Arthur doesn't know what to say to that. He glances back at Eames, whose focus is beyond Arthur. His posture shifts subtly and he murmurs, "Mark on your seven."

Arthur nods casually, shifting the conversation to something more mundane. Eames' accent changes, and Arthur tries not to smile when it closely mimics that of the Tenth Doctor.

Once the mark clears out, Arthur and Eames mill about the areas she spent most of her time in, Arthur taking in the details and the mood of the place while Eames provides insightful commentary.

Insightful enough, anyway, until Eames realizes this would make a great set for an episode of Doctor Who, and then Arthur never hears the end of it.

Arthur feels completely satisfied that he's got what he needs as they head back to the apartment. He's also having more fun on this job than he has in a long time. He attributes it to the nice Aussie weather and thinks little of it.


At the end of the week, Arthur locks himself in his bathroom and cranks up the hot water to de-stress. He feels his whole body beginning to relax as the warm water cascades over him, and with that peaceful feeling in mind, he reaches down to wrap a hand around his cock.

He imagines a nameless face settling in between his legs, smiling up at Arthur before taking him in his mouth. Bright eyes, sweaty, just a bit of scruff, not unlike the guy from last night's Doctor Who episode. Eames had maintained that "42" was a boring episode, but Arthur had rather enjoyed it. He didn't tell Eames that it was because Martha's temporary love interest, Riley, had caught his attention in a certain way.

He imagines fucking a mouth slightly fuller than that guy's, drawing out sharp noises from deep in his throat as he moves. Arthur's hand slides slowly over his cock, relishing the feel of it, warm water dripping into his eyes.

Suddenly, there is a pounding on the door, and Eames' voice carries through. "Arthur? I'm ordering out. Pizza, if you like? Do you have any preference?"

Arthur's cock jumps in his hand, and he gasps involuntarily. He swallows thickly and takes a deep breath before calmly shouting back, "Pizza is fine. Anything but your nasty pineapple."

"Pineapple it is!" Eames mocks, hitting the door once before moving away. Arthur can hear his chuckle for a moment before he's too far to hear, and when he moves his hand again, he's working from an entirely new mental image.

Everything is more intense as he pictures Eames kneeling before him on the shower floor. He imagines Eames' broad hands sliding up the back of his calves to cup his ass and pull him in, that gorgeous mouth a perfect heat as Eames sucks and licks. Arthur can't imagine why he never let himself picture it before, just how good it would feel, Eames' hands and mouth on him and the sarcastic responses they would trade as Arthur backed Eames up against the opposite wall and jerked him off, kissing fast and rough until Eames gasped into his mouth and came.

Arthur bites on his lip to keep from crying out as he spills out over his hand, the spray from the shower washing him off almost immediately. As his breathing returns to normal, he replays his last few thoughts in his head. He allows himself a few minutes to imagine pursuing the idea, crawling on top of Eames on the couch that Eames loves so much, that they spend almost every evening sharing and just going for it, then stamps it 'Bad Idea' and pushes it from his mind.

By the time the pizza arrives - without pineapple, thankfully - Arthur has moved on to more important things, like what they're going to do about the second dream level. If he gets momentarily distracted by Eames getting sauce on the side of his mouth, he doesn't allow the thought to linger in his mind.


The end of the job seems to approach quickly, though Arthur and Eames still find time at night to speed through season four of the show. Arthur loves Donna a lot. He loves that she's punchy and quick and says "Oi!" all the time.

It even gets to the point that Arthur is downright eager to watch the two-part season finale, but with only a few days left on the job, he pushes the excitement away and asks Eames to run through the dream with him.

Eames is thrilled with the opportunity to nitpick the structure of Arthur's dream, but Arthur pays him back in kind the next night, when they enter his dream.

"I don't know what you're so concerned over," Eames says petulantly. "You won't even be entering this dream."

"All the more reason for me to make sure you get it right," Arthur points out, getting in line to speak to a teller.

"You won't want to stand in that queue," Eames says, a hand sliding under Arthur's elbow to guide him away. They round the corner to discover a separate line, one that no one would notice upon entering the place from the main entrance.

Arthur raises his eyebrows, impressed. "Never ending line?"

Eames nods. "Should keep the mark busy while Barbara comes in the back way and gets to the safety deposit box."

"You never mentioned this to me before."

"I'd hate to ruin the surprise," Eames says, and they smile at each other for a moment until the teller politely clears his throat and Arthur realizes it's his turn.

Arthur easily gets access to box 1936 - the year the mark's favorite park bench was dedicated - but since these are his projections, it's not indicative of the actual rate of success. That will be up to Barbara.

Feeling good about where they stand, Arthur helps Eames pack away the PASIV, saying, "Think there's time for a season finale?"

Eames' broad smile is answer enough.

Two hours later, Arthur is incensed. He turns to Eames, his voice hard as he says, "The Doctor will do something though, right? He can fix her."

Eames frowns, looking sympathetic. "If he could have, he would have done it already."

Arthur huffs, pushing off of the couch. "I need a drink."

It's just a TV show, Arthur reminds himself. Just a TV show, and there's no reason for him to freak out. He's got to admit, though, that he's overinvested, and it's all Eames' fault.

When he tells Eames this, Eames just smiles.


The job ends. Arthur accepts an offer of a job in Athens, not realizing until he's ready to leave that Eames won't be there too.

Eames adds Arthur on Skype shortly thereafter, and through some persuasion, convinces Arthur to watch the Doctor Who specials that way. Arthur is reluctant about it, but it is enjoyable when they go through the three episodes. Arthur makes Eames laugh with his commentary; Eames makes Arthur smile with his replies.

Eames surprises Arthur by flying out to watch "The End of Time". Arthur doesn't know what to say when he shows up, but he manages a, "What the hell are you doing here?"

"He will knock four times," Eames says gleefully, holding up a DVD case.

Arthur rolls his eyes and lets him in. "I'd offer you a cup of coffee, but we both know how that would go, and I don't have any tea."

Eames doesn't seem too bothered. "We'll order something," he says. "In the meantime, why don't you show me the dream for this particular job of yours? I've heard so little of it."

"I'm not dreaming this one," Arthur says. "The architect is going in. He won't trust anyone else to do it."

Eames snorts. "Yeah, but I bet you've got it all figured out, how you would do it." Arthur makes a face; Eames is right. "Show me?"

Arthur firmly shakes his head, feeling unsettled. "What do you care? You're not even on this job."

Eames frowns, and for a moment Arthur considers taking it back, but it's against everything he's ever done to show a dream to someone not on his team. "Ordering out," Arthur repeats. "What would you like?"

They watch "The End of Time". Arthur cries during the episode, but Eames doesn't even point it out. Arthur suspects that it's because he was crying too. As the credits roll, Arthur feels strange and unhappy, like something was taken from him. He decides that he's just too damn invested and tells Eames that he's not going to watch any more.

"What?" Eames says, incredulous. "Arthur, you're almost caught up. Series five is really--"

Arthur shakes his head. He's gotten way too invested - in a TV show - and he needs to put a stop to it now.

Eames' mouth thins minutely, and he seems to decide something as he fixes Arthur with a knowing look. "You know what, you're right. You should stop here." He stands up, expression closed off. "I won't even mention it anymore."

Arthur blinks in surprise. Eames' tone isn't at all cutting, and yet Arthur suddenly feels like shit.

"If I leave now, I can catch the red eye back tonight."

Arthur's brow wrinkles in confusion. "You should stay," he insists, fighting that weird twisting feeling in his stomach. "Take the bed."

Eames smiles, but it doesn't reach his eyes. "No thanks. I'll see you around, Arthur."

Arthur stares at the door long after Eames leaves through it. He takes a deep breath and, not knowing what else to do, goes back to his research.


True to his word, Eames doesn't bring up Doctor Who again. Two weeks pass, and Arthur feels strange, almost sad. As he goes about his days, he sees some guy wearing red Converse shoes, somebody on the train says 'fantastic', and Arthur starts to feel a bit ridiculous. He texts Eames to say, 'You must be one of them aliens', and Eames replies back right away, 'yeah but dont shout it out ;)'.

Arthur takes on a new job, back in the states, and feels the difference when he doesn't have anyone to run through the dream with him a second time, smirking at all his inconsistencies. He heads home and is reminded of Eames again when he goes to order pizza, almost ordering a separate one with pineapple.

Suddenly, Arthur realizes giving up the show was really distancing himself from Eames, and he wants to take it all back. He spends some time figuring things out, and then he formulates a plan.


"Where, when, and what's the take?" Eames says, answering his phone on the second ring.

"What, no hello?" Arthur says, smiling. "To answer your question: Warwick, Rhode Island, as soon as you can get here, and a sufficient amount."

"Warwick," Eames repeats, laughing. "What the bloody hell kind of job is there to do in Warwick?"

Arthur's mouth twists. "How soon can you be here?"

"I can be there by week's end, darling, if you need me to be."

"Great," Arthur says, making a note in his moleskin notebook. "I'll have more information by the time you get here."


Eames checks into a hotel before calling, so Arthur has to modify his plans just slightly. But he gives Eames the address to meet him and waits, fighting his compulsion to straighten up.

Eames starts complaining about the choice of location as soon as he gets to Arthur's apartment, but then he goes strangely quiet in the middle of accusing Arthur of tempting him into the middle of nowhere so his body will never be found.

"What?" Arthur says, returning from the kitchen with a mug of warm water and a tea bag. Eames accepts both absently, his eyes trained on the picture frames on Arthur's desk. "Ah," Arthur says, mouth quirking into a smile. He picks up his favorite of the group and hands it to Eames. "Me and my family. Go on, make fun of my haircut."

Eames studies the picture for a moment, smiling warmly. He hands the picture back, stating simply, "You live here."

"I would have thought that was obvious," Arthur responds, but he knows what Eames means. He heads back toward his kitchen, continuing to speak to Eames and hoping he will follow. "I've got some bad news about the job."

"Other than the thrilling location?" Eames asks, but his tone has shifted, more of a pleased ribbing than the genuine complaint he seemed to have previously.

"The job will be delayed for a short while. The extractor won't be able to make it out as early as hoped." He pours himself a cup of coffee and then turns to Eames. "Think you can bear to wait it out in Warwick in the meantime?"

"I'm afraid you'll have to enlighten me on what I might be able to do to stave off the boredom."

Arthur nods. "There are a couple of museums - please don't rob them - lighthouses, a public library. And I suppose, well." He meets Eames' gaze. "We could always watch Doctor Who."

Eames' eyes brighten as he takes a sip of his tea. "Could we?" he asks. "I don't know, I may not have the time. All those sites to see in scenic Warwick."

"True, I'd hate to keep you from playing tourist. I know how much you love that. Except," Arthur pulls a face like he's just remembered some awful news, "everything closes by 8."

Eames raises his eyebrows. "Surprising."

In the end, they have to download the episodes onto Arthur's computer, and in the meantime, they get into a rather in depth conversation about the Tenth Doctor.

Eames begins raiding Arthur's cabinets as they talk, citing that this is a 'good snacking episode'.

"I'm warning you," Arthur says as he points out where he keeps the popcorn, "I probably won't like this new guy."

Eames beams at the microwave as he puts in the bag and presses the popcorn setting. "That's what you said last time."

Trusting Eames not to burn his kitchen down, Arthur goes in search of a cord to connect his computer to his TV.

"This couch is heavenly," Eames says when Arthur returns. "Not as visually appealing as our Brisbane one, mind, but I could very well settle here for the winter."

"Don't get any ideas," Arthur says without conviction as he nudges Eames out of his way.

Arthur watches the first episode of season five with a thrill of excitement sitting just under his skin. He attributes the feeling to the episode, that atmosphere of newness and discovery, or at least that's what he would say if Eames caught on to his current mood.

Still, Arthur insists he is withholding judgment on both Amy and the Eleventh Doctor, at the end. He's perfectly willing to keep going tonight, but Eames maintains that Arthur will be more receptive if given a day to think on it.

Arthur pulls his loaded die from his pocket and peers at it curiously.

"What's this? What are you doing?" Eames asks.

"Nothing, just... I want to watch another episode, and you want to wait. I thought surely this must be a dream." Arthur looks at him solemnly for a whole three seconds before a smile breaks out on his face.

"Piss off," Eames mutters, shoving at Arthur's shoulder as they both laugh.

Arthur shows Eames around a bit the next afternoon. Warwick might be a bit dull, but it's still home to Arthur, and Eames seems to understand that. He even keeps his insults to a minimum, at least while they're out in public.

They get caught up in conversation back at Arthur's apartment, until finally Arthur starts setting up his computer while Eames tells an intricate story about spending summers with his cousins.

They breeze through another two episodes before Arthur admits out loud, "I love this guy."

"He's brilliant," Eames agrees. He stretches dramatically, invading Arthur's space momentarily. "I suppose we should stop here for the night, given the hour. This next one's a two-parter, and I know how you feel about cliffhangers."

Arthur glances at the clock. "Let's watch it anyway; I want to see it. I don't have anywhere to be in the morning, do you?"

It doesn't take much to convince Eames, and Arthur queues up the next two downloads before making himself comfortable on the couch. He's on the edge of his seat as the first part ends, excited to find out what will happen with the weeping angels and Amy, but when he glances over at Eames, he discovers he's fallen asleep.

"Eames?" he says, not whispering but still quiet. He looks back to the screen, where the teaser for next week is still running. He really wants to see what happens, but...

With a sigh, he gets up and closes out the video player.

"Eames," he whispers, shaking his shoulder gently. "Eames, wake up."

Eames makes an unhappy, whimpering noise that does something strange to Arthur's insides. He will not think about what Eames looks like when he wakes up in the morning. He won't. "Arthur?" he mumbles, eyes blinking open slowly.

"Come on," Arthur says, hauling him up and leading him down to the guest bedroom.

When Eames blearily stumbles onto the bed, he's got his poker chip held firmly in his left hand. Arthur tries to pretend that doesn't make him smile, but he mostly fails.


The next morning, Arthur tells Eames there's no reason for him to pay for a hotel room; he should just stay in Arthur's guest room. Eames raises his eyebrows, but accepts the offer with a thank you.

They knock out the rest of season five in a couple of days, then spend an entire afternoon discussing the Doctor and his companions. Arthur still maintains that Donna is the best one; Eames doesn't disagree, but he has a certain partiality to Amy and Rory. And Martha.

"What about Rose?" Arthur asks, indignant. "She was absolutely incredible. Her ingenuity, happiness, and compassion? She just became extraordinary, because of the Doctor. How can you not count her?"

Eames looks back at him with such fondness that Arthur has to fight the impulse to look away. "I do, darling, but you didn't let me get that far."

"We were discussing the best companion," Arthur says, petulant. "They can't all be the best."

"I beg to differ," Eames argues.

Their conversation continues well past dinnertime, and neither of them even think of the supposed job.


The next day, however, Eames brings it up. "Honestly, Arthur, is there a job in this town or not?"

"I'm glad you asked," Arthur says. "If you brought your PASIV device, I'd like to try out the dream our architect was describing to me earlier."

"Oh, you've already spoken with the architect? Is everyone working from home on this one, then? Why not just call up the mark and just ask him to fax over his secrets? Keep everyone unnecessary out of Warwick."

Arthur follows him back to his room, a smile playing on his lips. "I'd hate for you to have to suffer alone."

"Your concern for my well-being is much appreciated, Arthur, but I should be saying the same to you." He hands the case to Arthur with a smile that takes the bite out of his teasing.

They prepare the PASIV with a quick precision, stretching out on Arthur's guest bed. Arthur takes a deep breath and presses in the button.

Arthur opens his eyes to a recreation of the park about a mile from his apartment. Eames, ever the adapter, already has his coat on and immediately hands Arthur a cup of coffee. "So the mark lives nearby," he comments.

Arthur makes a noncommittal noise, accepting the coffee with a small smile. His other hand slips into his pocket so he can remind himself that, yes, he is in control of this dream. "The park is just a starting point. The important part is just around the corner."

"Did you have to make it so bloody cold?" Eames says, sipping at his own drink. "It's bad enough dealing with it in reality."

Arthur shrugs as they turn the corner, feeling a bit strange in his own skin. When he doesn't get an instant reaction, he glances at Eames and is surprised to find him staring back intently.

"You seem jittery," Eames observes, studying him.

"You seem distracted," Arthur says, his confidence returning when he realizes Eames hasn't seen.

Eames' eyes brighten, like he's happy to be caught out, and then his gaze slides forward again. Arthur sees the exact moment when his eyes light on the blue box, his lips parting in genuine surprise.

Eames approaches it reverently, eyes roving over it in disbelief, while Arthur goes around to lean against the side and watch Eames' reaction. He crosses his arms and waits, content to watch the emotions play over Eames' face.

When Eames finally breaks out of his reverie and makes eye contact, Arthur arches an eyebrow and says, "It's bigger on the inside."

Eames curses appreciatively under his breath, moving forward to run his hand across the material of the door. "Can I see?"

"I hardly expect you to simply take my word for it," Arthur says, waving him toward the door. "Oh, wait."

He walks up to Eames and takes his hand. Eames just stares back, his hand uncooperative as Arthur tries to maneuver it into the right position. With a sigh of frustration, Arthur drops his hand and says, "Just snap your fingers, you idiot."

Eames' look of confusion transforms into one of sheer joy. "No," he says, disbelieving. "Arthur, did you...?" He trails off, snapping his fingers dutifully, and the TARDIS door creaks open. He utters an appreciative 'Oh' to rival the Tenth Doctor and bounds inside with the enthusiasm of a newborn puppy. Arthur bites his lip, following him inside.

He nearly runs into Eames, who has halted abruptly just inside the door. He stares at the expanse in awe. Arthur doesn't blame him; he'd done the same thing when he first created the scene, even when it wasn't quite right yet.

Eames runs around flipping switches and pressing buttons. "I can't imagine all the research that must have gone into this," he says quietly, almost to himself. His gaze slides slowly across the console to where Arthur is standing. He looks intent, licking his lips for a moment before saying, "Arthur."

Arthur clears his throat. "Don't you want to see the other rooms?"

Eames swallows thickly. "There are other rooms?" Arthur shoots him a dubious look, and he continues, "I mean, of course there are other rooms, but we've never actually seen them, which means you came up with them, which--"

"There's not a lot of time left on the clock," Arthur points out. Eames' mouth snaps shut, and he hurries down the nearest corridor.

He skips the first three doors and goes for the fourth, making Arthur reach into his pocket for his totem. He's gone straight to Arthur's favorite room: the library. Arthur wishes he would've picked one of the others first, though, because that room was mostly for Arthur's own enjoyment.

Eames doesn't seem to mind. He goes immediately to the bookshelves, running his finger along the spines, as if cataloguing the titles.

Arthur watches him move around the room for a few minutes, but the waiting just makes him anxious, so he distracts himself by walking up to a shelf and flipping through one of the books. Suddenly, Eames walks up behind him, startling Arthur with hands on his hips. His breath ghosts over Arthur's ear as he murmurs, "Arthur."

"I knew it," Arthur says, replacing the book on the shelf and turning. Eames' hands drop from his hips, but he doesn't step back. "I give you a TARDIS and you're already bored of it in 10 minutes."

Eames begins fiddling with Arthur's clothes, straightening his tie and pulling at the lapels of his suit jacket. "There was never any job, was there?"

Arthur's hands find their way to Eames' hips. He's standing so close, it's hard for Arthur not to touch. "You were the job," Arthur admits. Eames smiles like Arthur has just said the nicest thing, so Arthur continues. "Yusuf helped me with the research. Ariadne helped me with the building."

"Yusuf's already seen it?" Eames scoffs. His right hand has come to rest on Arthur's neck, his fingers tracing idle circles into the skin there. "That bastard's never gonna let me live that down."

"No," Arthur contradicts, his hand creeping under Eames' shirt. "No one else has seen it. Just us."

Eames' hand stills against Arthur's neck, and he licks his lips. "I'm not going to kiss you," he says, but with the way his nose is nudging against Arthur's, it's a little hard to believe. "Kissing in a dream is a waste. It's like undressing you with my eyes. Enjoyable enough at the time, but nothing like the real thing."

Arthur hums in contemplation, tilting his head so that his lips are a breath away from Eames'. "Well I'd hate to waste your time."

He feels Eames' sharp intake of breath, and then--

He blinks awake, smiling to himself even as he hurries off the bed. He sees the moment Eames follows him to wakefulness, a few seconds later, his body tensing minutely. Arthur gathers up the items for the PASIV with precision, and when he glances up, Eames is staring back at him, his eyes intense.

Arthur smirks, concentrating on his current task. He replaces the lead and snaps the case shut, and Eames reacts as if it was a gunshot, lifting up off the bed and pulling Arthur close.

Arthur hauls him in the rest of the way, bringing their lips together. His hand slides under Eames' shirt across the warm skin of his back as Eames' lips part and he lets Arthur in.

Arthur lets himself get lost in the kiss, body arching into Eames' as their tongues curl against each other. "Bloody hell, Arthur," Eames says raggedly when Arthur pulls back for breath. His hands are resting comfortably on Arthur's ass, showing no sign of moving anytime soon.

"You should be wearing fewer clothes," Arthur says, beginning to work on removing Eames' shirt.

"I could say the same of you," Eames replies. He gets with the program a few seconds later, and it's not long before they tumble back onto the bed, kissing hungrily, hands roaming over newly exposed skin.

Eames moans into the kiss and arches his body into Arthur's, creating a perfect friction that Arthur maintains by pushing back. He bites at Eames' bottom lip and starts to think that he could come just from this when Eames pulls back a fraction and says, "Wait."

Arthur stills, his body aching in protest, and fixes Eames with a displeased look. Eames doesn't look bothered, though, as he surges forward to flip their positions, maneuvering Arthur under him and kissing him before he has a chance to protest.

Thoughts of protesting don't linger for long, however, when Eames begins kissing down his chest in a southward trajectory. Arthur moans and tilts his hips upward at the thought of Eames' mouth on him. Eames pauses, his lips on Arthur's hipbone. He looks back up at Arthur slowly and grins. "Now you're getting it."

Eames has every opportunity to draw this out, to tease Arthur mercilessly until he begs Eames to put his mouth on him, but he doesn't take it. Arthur would be surprised, if he had the spare mental capacity for anything else as Eames swallows him down in one quick movement.

God, it's better than Arthur imagined. Eames makes all these filthy noises, as if he's enjoying sucking Arthur off, which just sets Arthur off even more. He gasps as Eames' hands slide under his ass, urging him further forward. Arthur doesn't last long after that, pushing into the wet heat of Eames' mouth and coming down his throat.

"Jesus Christ," Arthur says roughly when Eames pulls away, smiling in satisfaction.

Arthur takes a moment to gather his wits, and in the meantime, Eames makes his way up to kiss him thoroughly. Arthur does his best to show his appreciation for Eames' mouth as he urges Eames over onto his back.

Eames' mouth goes slack when Arthur wraps a hand around his cock. Arthur smirks and nips at his lips, pulling a gorgeous moan from him.

"Fuck, Arthur. I never thought I'd have you properly," Eames murmurs as he pushes into Arthur's fist. He cuts himself off with a gasp when Arthur twists his hand and slides his thumb over the head of his cock.

Satisfied that he's seen Eames sufficiently lose control, Arthur shifts down and makes to take Eames into his mouth. He pauses, one hand firm on Eames' hip to hold him down and says, "Don't move."

Eames curses and swallows thickly, nodding after a moment. Trusting Eames not to choke him, Arthur moves to swallow him down.

He can feel the tension in Eames' hips as he moves, hands fixed at the base of his cock. He has a steady enough grip that the couple of times Eames seems to lose control and arch up just a bit, he can move his hand to the side and push him back down firmly. Eames moans every time it happens, which is a curious fact Arthur may have to find out more about later.

When his jaw starts to protest, Arthur lets his hands do most of the work and reaches back to roll Eames' balls in his hand, earning an appreciative groan. Eames' cursing gets more pronounced and Arthur slides one finger back, just edging around his hole. Long fingers slide into Arthur's hair as he takes Eames in once more, and Eames has given up on coherency, and the next thing Arthur knows, Eames is coming with Arthur's name on his lips.

Surprised, Arthur pulls back quickly, causing Eames to shoot all over his chest, chin, and neck.

"That was supposed to be a warning," Eames says roughly, fingers sliding through the mess on Arthur's chest as he sits up and pulls him in for a filthy kiss. "Though I can't say it wasn't one of the hottest things I've ever seen in my life." He licks across Arthur's neck, pulling a moan from Arthur that he then mirrors, the sound vibrating against Arthur's neck. "Honestly. Top five."

Arthur can't really hold it against him when he does things like that. He'll just have to even the playing field later. He wraps a hand around Eames' shoulder and says, "Shower. Now."

Eames allows Arthur to pull him up, but he pulls Arthur in for a slow, languid kiss before they can get any further. "I wasn't aware showering was a two-man operation," he says with a smirk that Arthur can't stop staring at.

"Clearly you haven't been doing it right," Arthur says, tearing his gaze away and heading for the bathroom.

"You'd better teach me, then. I do hate to live on in ignorance."

This time, when Arthur leads, Eames follows.


"I can't believe you built me a TARDIS," Eames says that night, when they're wrapped up in Arthur's comforter and each other.

"We can go back and see the rest of it later," Arthur says, sliding his leg forward to hook around Eames'. "Not for long, though. It's hard to maintain a TARDIS, even with my imagination."

"Even with your love of paradoxes, you mean." Eames says, edging forward to brush his lips against Arthur's.

Arthur makes a noise of protest, tilting away from the kiss. "I build you a fucking TARDIS, and still you insist I have no imagination."

"I can think of a few ways you could prove it to me," Eames says, leering. His hand slides up Arthur's leg in a slow tease.

Arthur normally has no intention of indulging Eames in his implications, but in this case he's willing to make an exception.

"You should consider yourself lucky," Eames says as Arthur crawls on top of him. "I don't usually put out until the third date."

Arthur rolls his eyes. He'll show Eames 'lucky.' "I'm pretty sure we're far past the third date, Eames, even if you count all the marathons as one." He leans in to nip at Eames' neck as he slides his hand under Eames' ass and brushes at the sensitive place behind Eames' balls.

Eames pushes into the touch, his eyes dark. He licks his lips, his voice pitched low when he says, "Well in that case..."

Arthur leans down, his lips just barely brushing Eames' ear and his finger just barely brushing Eames' hole as he murmurs, "I'm going to draw you out nice and slow until you're begging me to fuck you, and then I'm going to pin you to the mattress and slide into you."

Eames exhales shakily. "Keep talking like that and we might not get that far."

Arthur takes his time preparing Eames, cherishing the slow buildup of arousal as he watches Eames react to his every touch. As he slides in a second finger, he wonders aloud how long Eames will be able to hold out.

Eames exhales shakily in a semblance of a laugh. "As much as I appreciate the challenge, darling," he cuts himself off with a gasp as Arthur slides his fingers out and back in, "haven't the years we've spent working side by side been enough of a torturous tease?"

Arthur pulls his hand back, slicking up a third finger and lining them up. "You tell me," he says, sliding all three in at once.

Eames curses creatively and arches his back up off the bed. Arthur watches him heatedly, growing harder just seeing Eames all flushed. He honestly agrees with Eames, it's been a long road and it's unfair to draw it out longer, but he's not about to go back on his word now.

Luckily, he doesn't have to wait long before Eames is gasping out, "Arthur, please."

Arthur pushes into Eames as slowly as he can manage, watching him closely for any signs of discomfort. Even though every muscle in his body is screaming for him to move now, Arthur waits for the look on Eames' face to look less pained, and after taking a deep breath, Eames looks at him and nods.

It takes them a moment to find the right rhythm, but when they do, Arthur grips Eames' thigh with one hand and leans in to hold him down with the other as he pumps his hips in an out, the two of them gasping in tandem.

After that it's just a haze of movement and skin on skin, punctuated by certain moments like Eames' moan when Arthur wraps a hand around his cock and the perfect pressure Arthur feels when Eames wriggles his hips. When Eames spills out over Arthur's hand and his own, he pulls Arthur impossibly close and kisses him within an inch of his life, the sensations overwhelming Arthur until he's gasping into Eames' mouth and coming.

Arthur shifts to breathe out heavily against Eames' collarbone as he comes down, waiting to get his wits about him again. "That was..."

"Fantastic," Eames says in a fairly accurate impersonation of the Ninth Doctor, his laugh ruffling Arthur's hair a bit.

Arthur gives him a smack on the shoulder that is belied by the smile on his face and the kiss he gives him right after. Both of them wince a bit when Arthur slides out, going away for a moment to find a towel and dispose of the condom.

"Always so concerned with being clean," Eames says warmly as Arthur wipes at the mess on his chest. "I expect we'll be having another one of those communal showers in the morning?"

"I hate to think of the state of your sheets if you don't clean up after this sort of thing," Arthur says. He tosses the towel expertly into his hamper as he climbs on top of Eames, pulling the comforter back over them and settling into a kiss that doesn't look likely to end anytime soon.

When they pull back, Eames' lips are so red he could have been wearing makeup, and Arthur imagines his own are much the same.

"You do realize," Eames says, "now that you've invited me into your bed and your home..." He trails off, running his thumb along Arthur's lower lip in a gentle caress. "I don't actually intend to leave, especially not before the airing of the Christmas special."

Arthur raises his eyebrows. "The bed or the home?"

Eames shrugs. "Both?" He runs a warm hand down the skin of Arthur's back, holding him close. "I may be convinced to leave for short periods of time, but not if you remain in either of the aforementioned."

"Eames, we can't put our lives on hold for Doctor Who."

"Says the man who spent a month building a dream TARDIS."

Arthur cuts his eyes away, feeling his ears burn. "That was--"

"--the sweetest thing anyone has ever done for me," Eames says sincerely. He shifts his hand up to Arthur's neck and pulls Arthur for a slow, sweet kiss that Arthur returns with an unrestrained smile. "Anyway, it's only for a few weeks, and I'll pitch in for rent." Arthur doesn't reply for a moment, looking back at Eames blankly, so he adds, "I'll take you out for fancy dinners!"

Arthur takes in Eames' mischievous expression and thinks of Eames' tweed suit. "You're going to dress up as the Doctor, aren't you?"

His grin widens. "Bowties are cool."

Arthur shifts to his side, stifling a yawn. "I should probably have more of a problem with that than I do."

Eames turns to him and snuggles in close, pressing a kiss to Arthur's neck. "Does that mean I can stay?"

Arthur sighs, mainly at himself for what he's about to do. "There's room in the song for you."

Eames stills completely. He jerks his head back, looking Arthur in the eye. "Did you just quote Ood Sigma?"

Arthur maintains a straight face. "I don't know what you're talking about."

Eames kisses him soundly, his mouth stretching into a smile before he even pulls back. "That decides it, darling. You are never getting rid of me now."

Arthur smiles back. "Go to sleep, Mr. Eames."


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