by Critical Strike
illustrated by olukemi
May 16th, 2006
Seamus made sure to be on time. He had a few stops to make before he met up with Siobhan, and he absolutely refused to be late. With a medium-sized disposable cooler tucked under his arm, Seamus crossed Eighth Avenue and headed into Central Park, narrowly avoiding being run over by a few skaters not paying enough attention. He left the path for the grass on Strawberry Field, already grinning ear to ear at his own cleverness. He had a few surprises tucked away for Siobhan. The blond hadn’t been quite as perky as usual the last few days, and Seamus was going to make it his mission to correct that. He looked about, checking to see if Siobhan had beaten him to their meeting point.
Seamus noticed quickly that Siobhan was in fact already there. The blond faery was lying on a blanket, his shoes kicked off, and was just relaxing while he waited for Seamus to arrive. His eyes were closed and hair fanned out beneath him as he soaked up the sun, perfectly aware of the attention he was getting and ignoring it just the same. One leg balanced on the other, his foot bobbed lazily up and down as he waited.
Seamus had to pause for a moment and just look at Siobhan. He had no idea how the blond had managed to look like a human creamsicle, but the orange and white outfit had exactly that effect. It entirely preempted the salutation he’d planned in favor of a simple, “Wow. You look amazing.”
It had to be the stockings, he decided. Thigh-high orange-patterned white stockings, the kind he’d been dreaming about. Literally. He swallowed and dropped to the ground, putting the cooler down on the blanket.
At the sound of Seamus’s voice, Siobhan’s foot stopped moving and a slow smile curved his lips. “I keep telling you, precious, flattery will get you everywhere.” Eyes fluttering open, he sat up, and that smile only brightened. “Good afternoon, my dear gentleman.” Shifting to sit on his heels, he noticed the cooler and eyed it curiously. “What’s this?”
Seamus grinned at that. “Does it counts as flattery if I’m just being truthful?” He kicked off his shoes so as not to track dirt on the blankets. “What’s what? Oh, the cooler! Well, I thought we might want some drinks. And dessert. But you don’t get to know what they are just yet.”
“It counts as flattery because it’s you,” Siobhan teased as he inched closer to Seamus, as if going for the picnic basket. “And no fair, you brought a surprise. I’m terribly curious now.” And Siobhan was curious, blue eyes alight with it, but he was smiling past his pout. Leaning across Seamus, he tried to lift the lid of the cooler to sneak a peek anyway.
Seamus stuck out his tongue and shifted the cooler behind him. “No, no peeking! It’s a surprise and I’ll show you later. We haven’t even started to eat yet!” He positioned himself squarely between Siobhan and the cooler – as if that would somehow stop the devious blond – blue eyes twinkling. “Okay, how about a trade? You’ve got lunch in there. Bring out the goods, and I’ll start bringing out drinks. But you don’t get the surprise until we’ve eaten.” He leaned forward a little. “It’s definitely worth the wait, I promise.”
He watched as Siobhan held firm to the pout for a moment as if debating. Then, rather suddenly, hands braced on Seamus’s thighs, Siobhan touched their noses together in a quick playful movement, then sat back and went for the picnic basket. “Fine. You win this round, Mr. Callaghan. But it better be good.” Opening the basket, Siobhan started to pull out plates and silverware and napkins, then a large dish of fried chicken, then potato salad.
Seamus could only gape for a moment. It had only been a little gesture, that brush of noses, but coupled with warm hands on his thighs… It had Seamus starting, catching himself, trying to remind himself he had a girlfriend. It had been easy at first, but it was just getting more and more difficult the more time he spent with Siobhan. The logical idea would have been to stop seeing him, even if they were just friends. But they worked at the same bar, and it was hard to avoid the captivating blond, and harder still to say no to him.
After they’d polished off their lunches, Seamus glanced sidelong at Siobhan, smile tugging the corner of his lips, and pure mischief in his eyes. “So are you full or ready for dessert? Close your eyes first.” He waited until Siobhan had complied and reached into the cooler, pulling out a container of freshly washed and cut strawberries. The stems had been snipped, leaving just the green tops. They were really only half of the surprise, but he laid the now open container in Siobhan’s hands. “Okay, you can open your eyes now.”
Siobhan did so and his eyes went wide with delight. “Strawberries! I love strawberries!”
He couldn’t contain the little bounce of excitement as he plucked one from the container and took a slow, deliberate bite, eyes closing in pleasure as he savored the taste on his tongue before chewing. Swallowing, he looked at Seamus, smiling slowly. “You are… amazing. Thank you, Seamus.”
“If you think so now, just wait.” Seamus couldn’t have hoped for a better response to that and while Siobhan was distracted by the berries, he pulled out two hard plastic champagne flutes before his hand dove back into the cooler. “That’s not all. What could go better with strawberries than,” and he pulled out a bottle, “a little champagne?” From the moment they decided to meet in Strawberry Field, he knew he had to get strawberries. The accompanying champagne had been a given.
Siobhan was clearly charmed, an amusing thing since he himself frequently and literally charmed mortals. But Seamus had beaten him to it, and with his own sweet kind of magic. Still clutching the strawberries, he flung himself at Seamus, pressing a kiss to his cheek, only barely resisting the lure of his mouth. He leaned back slightly, arm still curled around Seamus’s neck. “Did I say amazing?” he asked, a little breathless. “I don’t think that even begins to cover it.”
Seamus didn’t quite expect such an effusive reaction and he reddened a little, more from the compliment than anything else. His arms tightened almost automatically around Siobhan for just a moment before the blond pulled away. The little brush on his cheek was becoming standard now, but it didn’t stop a little thrill of pleasure from running through him. He knew he was treading some dangerous waters. It was one thing to know Siobhan liked him. It was another to realize he was starting to feel the same way. Or that the little things he kept doing with or for Siobhan really should have been with his girlfriend, Sunny. He looked away, busying himself with opening the champagne, the cork popping out with such force it frightened some nearby birds. He poured a glass for each of them and handed Siobhan his glass first. Watching the blond over the rim of his own glass, he said, “Now we can really enjoy these strawberries.”
Seamus was unable to tear his eyes away as Siobhan plucked a strawberry from the carton and pressed it to Seamus’s lips. Seamus’s brain shut down then, and had him automatically opening his mouth for the strawberry. And when his brain started working again, it played him images of his first date with Sunny. When she had fed him strawberries for dessert. Well, shit. He washed the berry down with the champagne, the bubbles tickling his throat, but mingling perfectly with the strawberry.
“Try holding the strawberry in your mouth a bit while you sip the champagne,” he managed to croak, trying to pull himself together. It may not have been fair to Sunny to be out with Siobhan – this was far more like a date than he realized – but it was just as unfair to Siobhan to be anywhere else in his head than right here.
Siobhan didn’t seem to be at all aware of the turmoil in Seamus’s mind; he laughed a little and picked out another strawberry. “Hate to burst your bubble, precious, but I have done this before. Never enjoyed myself this much before, though.”
He bit off only half of the strawberry this time, taking a sip of champagne and letting it linger on his tongue with the strawberry before swallowing both, enjoying the fizzy sensation. And then he offered the other half to Seamus, holding it to his lips.
“Ah.” Seamus gently took Siobhan’s wrist in his hand that time, and gently guided it back to the blond’s own mouth. He didn’t want to hurt Siobhan’s feelings, but he wanted to get the subtle point across that perhaps this wasn’t exactly the best idea. But by way of a small concession, it took a very long time for him to release his hold. In fact, his hand sort of slid up to grip Siobhan’s smaller one before he finally let go. It just felt far too comfortable holding it. As comfortable as looking down into those blue eyes.
He broke the mood. He had to. He packed up their little picnic when they had finished eating and then raced Siobhan to Bethesda Fountain, giving the tiny blond a huge head start. It didn’t matter; Seamus’s legs were long and he caught up and surpassed Siobhan with ease. He then took off shoes and socks and climbed right into the fountain. It took one bright smile and an extended hand for Siobhan to doff his own shoes and those stockings and climb in after him.
The first splash of water was an accident, but it was swiftly followed by an all-out water fight. Giggling madly, Siobhan raced through the fountain, Seamus close behind. Bare feet threatened to slip on coins littering the base, and every moment was just a moment longer that could have been caught by park officials. And every moment, Seamus felt his control slipping farther and farther away.
He lost it entirely when he finally caught Siobhan. They froze there, like a picture, Seamus’s arms around Siobhan’s waist, Siobhan’s up around Seamus’s shoulders. The kiss was inevitable. Maybe Siobhan raised up on his toes to close the last inch between them, but Seamus didn’t try to stop him. Not when it felt like every fiber of his being was reaching for that kiss, begging for it. He gave in and pressed his lips against Siobhan’s. The connection was undeniable, and he wasn’t going to try any longer.
He had to talk to Sunny.
February 14th, 2007
Getting the ring had been easy. It was his grandmother’s ring, a beautiful gold ring with three diamonds set into the band. It was an interlocking ring, one that had had a gold band specially made to fit perfectly. It was unusual, unique, and one of a kind.
It was nothing short of perfect, and it was currently resting in a box in Seamus’s right pocket, held in his hand. His other hand was twined in Siobhan’s as they walked through Central Park. They paused, spreading a blanket on the grass in the middle of Strawberry Field.
Seamus was recreating their first date, and with some astonishing detail. The same blanket, the same picnic basket, the same chicken and potato salad, the same caffeine-free iced tea, and it was obvious how much Siobhan appreciated the sentiment. It almost made him wish he’d chosen the same outfit to wear that day as he had eight months prior.
They worked through lunch, ignoring the chill in the winter air. It was definitely colder that it had been in May, but neither of them much minded, not when they were wrapped tightly in each other’s arms, their body warmth enveloping them like a cocoon.
The picnic was short; Seamus was in a hurry to get to the fountain. It was pretty empty there this time of year, but there were still a few people about. Seamus led Siobhan right over to the same spot they’d had their first kiss, and turned to look down at him. “Eight months may not be long enough for some people, for some relationships. But when you know exactly who and what you want, when you know who you want to spend the rest of your life with, when there’s not the slightest bit of doubt or hesitation in your mind or heart, eight months is long enough.”
He dropped to one knee and smiled as Siobhan’s eyes when wide. The ring box came out of Seamus’s pocket and opened in one fluid motion and he stared up at the blond faery with hopeful blue eyes. “Siobhan, will you marry me?”
There was a split second that seemed to last forever as Seamus looked up at him, completely unaware of what was running through the blond faery’s mind. Siobhan had had plenty of lovers over the years. Some were as flighty as he and some professed undying love for him. A few had proposed marriage before and Siobhan’s instinctive reaction was to laugh, the edge of cruelty from his faery nature showing through. Never once had the thought of marriage entered his mind seriously, not before he met Seamus. But now there wasn’t even a bit of hesitation before his blue eyes filled with happy tears and a small series of ‘yesses’ fell from his lips. He could barely see as Seamus slipped the ring onto his finger, and he launched himself at his new fiancé, lips pressed to lips as a quiet cheer erupted from the few people who’d just witnessed the engagement.
February 14th, 2008
The strawberries couldn’t help it if they weren’t perfect; they were out of season. But fresh fruit it had to be, and strawberries in particular. Seamus was insistent about that. Chocolate was out of the question – they were both allergic to the caffeine. Well, maybe allergic wasn’t the right word. The substance didn’t break down in a faery’s system, and though small amounts merely made them ill, larger doses could kill them both.
Seamus gave up and left the berries alone; he was no good with plants, not unless they were barley or hops. Okay, he was good with the grapes too, and pretty much anything after it went into its alcoholic form. Not only was he a bartender, but he was also a clurichaun; it’s what clurichauns did. He couldn’t cultivate plants like Siobhan could, couldn’t make everything green and vibrant, and certainly couldn’t make the strawberries the perfect amount of sweet and juicy.
Instead, he went to fiddle with his camera. He caught sight of the clock, but he didn’t bother to hurry. He’d sent Siobhan shopping and the little blond would be gone for hours before he came bursting through the front door, laden with bags full of clothes, shoes, and jewelry. Seamus had plenty of time to set up. The champagne was chilling, the strawberries were being left to their own devices, and Seamus had plenty of film, enough to last them all night. He was ready when Siobhan came though the front door, all smiles, with five bags in his two arms and a secretive smile on his delicate mouth. Seamus thought one of those bags held a present for him, and he swept down on Siobhan, dropping a lingering kiss on upturned lips.
But first the strawberries. Siobhan didn’t seem to care they weren’t just right. They tasted perfect to him when held to his mouth by Seamus’s fingers. It didn’t matter they were out of season when he returned the favor and slid one into Seamus’s. And by the time they worked their way through the whole basket, licking and sucking red juices from each other’s fingers, neither of them would remember that the strawberries hadn’t been quite ripe enough.
Siobhan did have a present for him, but it hadn’t been in the bags. No, the faery had already been wearing the present he’d bought. It involved stockings and garters, a little peek of which Seamus got when Siobhan stood and his skirt swirled just a little high. The table was forgotten. The champagne was empty and the strawberries had been savored and eaten, eliciting flashbacks to that first date. Seamus’s camera, set on automatic now, clicked away merrily, a non-living voyeur watching eagerly as Seamus’s hand skirted up a stockinged leg. The fabric was light and teasing beneath his fingers; Seamus took his time touching, but inevitably his hand strayed up higher, feeling the bared skin of Siobhan’s thigh over the stocking’s edge.
Siobhan wore something that could neither be called panties nor a skirt. He’d found it at Frederick’s of Hollywood, and knew he had to have it. Pale pink and pleated, the tiny skirt offered little coverage at all. It had garters that connected to the stockings Seamus loved, something Siobhan had learned early on in their relationship and abused terribly. The expression in Seamus’s eyes, sky blues gone dark with lust, said everything Siobhan wanted to hear in words unspoken. With a mischievous expression in his own blue eyes, Siobhan rolled over onto his stomach, presenting both Seamus and his camera with the perfect picture: milky white legs curving up to the rounded rear end that peeked out from beneath the nearly nonexistent hem of his so-called skirt.
Seamus didn’t think twice before replacing hands with mouth. His clever tongue licked its way up the inside of Siobhan’s thighs, paused to suck and bite little red patches into otherwise unblemished skin. Seamus liked leaving his marks on Siobhan, every bit as much as the blond faery liked receiving them. He teased and tortured Siobhan with lips and teeth and tongue until the latter was writhing and begging for more.
Seamus gave him more, pressing one long finger in past the tight ring of muscles Siobhan eagerly presented him with. A knowing smirk tugged at Seamus lips as he curled his finger, unerringly finding the spot that made Siobhan buck and moan, his voice going breathy and high. And then it vanished to be replaced by an open-mouthed moan of his own when Siobhan’s muscles squeezed around him, a blatant demand.
Siobhan liked being teased, and Seamus liked teasing him. But they both loved it when Seamus’s control would snap and he’d drive into Siobhan relentlessly. Like he did just then. Seamus pulled his finger free and pulled Siobhan up onto his hand and knees. The only warning Siobhan got was a sound that was something between a moan and a growl before Seamus drove in with one long, hard stroke. Siobhan let loose a scream that was all pleasure, once again eternally grateful he was fey and that they never needed to waste time with lubrication and preparation. He wanted it all immediately and he would beg Seamus for it.
“Fuck! Harder, Seamus, harder!” Siobhan’s voice came out a hoarse plea, mostly muffled into the soft pillows.
The sheets tore. Clenched in a pale hand that twisted them so tightly and sharply, they had no time to slide or give before they ripped entirely. They were stained red in various spots from the juice of the strawberries that had once been on the dining room table, berries that had gone from the table, covered in whipped cream, to the bedroom, still the same.
Seamus couldn’t tell whether Siobhan’s body was stained red from the berries or the ministrations of his own hands and mouth. He didn’t stop to try to figure it out. He just drove in harder, deeper, faster, giving them what they both wanted. All it took was Seamus’s hand wrapping itself around Siobhan’s cock and stroking him in time to make Siobhan’s entire body tense, arch, hold… And then orgasm raced through him, crashing over him in wave after wave as he shook and shuddered beneath Seamus. And all it took was the vise-like grip of Siobhan’s muscles around Seamus that had him following swiftly behind, his own climax every bit as intense.
It would be hours later before they finally collapsed in sweet exhaustion, to lazily eat the very last of the strawberries. Half-conscious, sticky, and spent, they curled in each other’s arms, warm breaths mingling. The “Happy Valentine’s Day” that hung on their swollen lips was uttered seconds before the joint “I love yous” that came in unison.
It hadn’t been an easy road that got them to this point, but Seamus knew he wouldn’t have made any different choices if he had to make them over again.