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Title: The Possibility of Escape
Ratings & warnings: Adult (sexual content.) Dark. Issues of consent.
Characters: Tosh/Owen
Spoilers: Fragments. Set pre-series one.
Wordcount: ~6,800
Beta: [profile] pinstripe_owl and [livejournal.com profile] pocketmouse, with last minute lifesaving help from 
[livejournal.com profile] cruentum 

The past is not dead.
In fact, it is not even past.
- William Faulkner

 

Afterwards, Owen is left panting. There is a coppery taste in his mouth and it clings to his tongue as he spits, a splatter of saliva and blood dripping down from his swollen lip. He wipes it away with the back of his hand, grunting with pain as his knuckles brush his nose. The throbbing in his head intensifies, and he doesn't even know exactly what it is—the pain or something else, the sum total of everything that's happened. He wants to curl up in the corner and sleep. But there's Tosh, sprawled and motionless, and Owen doesn't even stop to think: he just crawls closer on his aching knees, coming to kneel by her body.

Tosh, sweetheart.”

Nothing. He fumbles for her pulse, feeling his own heartbeat still as it waits for the confirmation of hers. For a beat, two, they are totally in sync: her pulse tenacious under his fingertips, her chest rising and falling under her shirt.

Owen lets himself breathe out and squeezes his hands into fists until his fingers stop trembling.

Help her. He's got to help her. Fix this. Now.

She's heavier than he would have expected, her body a dead weight in his arms. With each step her head lolls back, her lips parted and one of her eyes half-open. Owen doesn't look at her eye. Doesn't. With a shift of his shoulder he tilts her head up and forwards, letting it nod against her chest. It's better, this way: from here she looks like when 

she's standing on the corner, her shoulders hunched against the wind, her hair plastered over her forehead by the rain. She looks so much like a dejected puppy that Owen would regret snapping at her before if he weren't in such a foul mood. Suzie's already given up, has moved on to search for the Weevils manually: Owen fancies going through bins about as much as he fancies a kick to the skull, though, so he's waiting. 

Any luck?” he snaps, and Tosh shakes her head. 

No, not yet. There must be something wrong with the tracker, I'm sorry. I thought it was ready...”

Owen grunts. The rain continues to piss down and after a bit, to put the icing on the fucking cake, a pair of drunks walk past and make loud comments about how Asian girls aren't supposed to have big tits. 

Oi, fuck off,” Owen tells them. 

Once they're gone Tosh says, quietly, “Thanks.” 

Owen shrugs. “Whatever.”

He lays her out carefully on her bed, resting her hands by her sides, brushing her hair away from her face. Like this it's as if she's sleeping, almost: pale and ruffled, yes, but asleep. He smooths down her clothes, refolding her collar and brushing beads of water from the skin of her neck. There are stains on the chest of her shirt that Owen doesn't look at, not yet, because she needs him to focus on the things he can fix, not what happened before.

He's a doctor. This is what he does.

She's still wearing the clothes she went out in, though her mascara has run and her hair is tangled about the little silver clip above her ear. Owen unbuttons her shirt, sliding his arm around her and cradling her to his chest as he slides down the sleeves, draws them over her hands. One catches on the silver bracelet she wears on her left wrist, with

a little charm. Owen leans closer and realizes that it's a plane. 

Who gave you that?” he asks as he takes the drink from her. 

Tosh looks at him as if surprised he's not still angry about the non-existent Weevils. “My parents were in the RAF,” she says finally.

I think you should get an alien,” Jack cuts in, waving his glass of water expansively. 

Suzie rolls her eyes. “The last thing she needs to do is think about aliens in the five hours a day she doesn't spend chasing Weevils.” 

Owen sinks back in his chair, downing another sizeable portion of his beer and letting the buzz of the bar drown them out. Everywhere he looks it's the eighteenth, the stupid fucking eighteenth, and
{ “Happy birthday, gorgeous,” he says, kissing her ear as he gives her the present. Underneath her shampoo he can smell her skin, the sweet animal softness of her, and it's almost enough to calm his nerves. 

A box?” she says, looking up at him with a half-unsure, half-knowing smile that makes him melt. “Owen, you didn't...” 

Just open it. Go on.” 

He gets on one knee and everything in the end, down between the plates of half-eaten banana pancakes. When he knocks over the roses it's okay because she laughs, already saying “yes” as she slides into his lap, warm and alive. }

He holds Tosh safe against himself for a moment too long before he settles her back down. Bruises are already appearing over her skin, sliding up to the surface and resting there. Owen touches one with a fingertip, catches his breath.

Help her. He has to help her, even if he's hurting, even if all he wants is for her to open her eyes and for it not to have happened, even if he can't bear looking at the traces of it—

She trusts him, and he's her doctor.

You have to trust me,” he says, so desperate he's almost choking on it. “I'm going to fix it. I promise. Just let me help you, Tosh. Please.”

Her skirt unzips on the side but his fingertips are shaking too much and he has to stop, take a deep breath.

She's going to be okay. Tosh is always okay.

He keeps her legs together as he slides the skirt off, the smooth black fabric slipping easily over her skin. There are more bruises over her legs: paler discolourations over her hips, and a blemish the colour of decay on her thigh. Red scratches trail down over her side.

He gathers up her clothes and folds them before putting them down on the floor, resting his palm on them. The fabric of her shirt is smooth under his hand,

clings over her breasts. If there's one thing that's getting through Owen's bad mood it's that: the sight of Tosh's cleavage as she bends over for a chickpea, the soft curve of intimate skin that calls out for teeth and tongue and touching. Sex: it's simple and animal and it's always been Owen's favourite means of escape. You can't deny the flesh, that's what Owen's learnt: it's always there, always dragging you down. There's no point fighting it. Owen stopped a long time ago. 

He shifts, raising one leg up to rest his ankle on his opposite knee, moving his hips to minimize how obvious his growing erection is. Tosh keeps talking, and maybe she's actively trying to avoid his eyes—God knows she's been on the receiving mood of his bad temper enough times today. Maybe she's finally learning.

Owen doesn't think so, though. He's known for years that Tosh wants him.
{ the way she looks at him over her coffee }
{ the sandwiches she brings him }
And yeah, she knows he's watching her: she squirms, moving awkwardly in her chair, and the blush over her cheeks makes Owen hungry. 

He's never been interested in pursuing Tosh before, but he's already ugly drunk and getting more so and the way she shifts under his eyes is delicious. This is the taste of power, and now that Owen's smelt blood he wants more of it. He lets his eyes fix on her tits and imagines his cock between them, fucking lazily over her skin. 

Later, when Jack and Suzie leave, Owen catches Tosh's arm. 

Don't go,” he says, and she looks at him with a trust that hurts. He's had enough hard knocks, Owen, to figure out that everyone lets you down, if you let them. 

She's got to learn sometime, he thinks and it's like
{ “Father Christmas is a pile of shit,” he tells Peter McNabb. “It's just your parents fucking with you,” and those tears are their own sweet reward, minimum effort for maximum distress }
and his whole life has been that, in retrospect: a prolonged experiment on the most efficient way to hurt others. 

He jerks himself away, runs a hand through his hair. Right. He needs to check her over. But first her shoes, and he can hardly look at them: just carefully undoes the straps, slipping them away. She has the smallest feet, Tosh: her toes neat little curls, her nails painted the lightest of blues,

and all he can see is her feet all tangled up in the sheets, the only part of her moving: twisting and curling, her toenails leaving red traces as they scratch over her skin.

Vulnerable, that's how Tosh looks: her secret skin exposed, that razor-sharp brain quieted. It makes Owen feel sick to his stomach, and he forces himself to stand taller. She's there, and there's nothing he can do about it except help her. Heal her.

He takes a deep breath. Outside it's dark, night pressing heavy over the city, and inside her apartment Tosh is lying here, her body soft and small and

hot against him, her hand in his as he pulls her into the crowd. She stays close, and the way that she looks at him makes something inside of him hurt. He wants to tell her how fucking stupid it is, this adoration. This is all she's wanted, and he wants to bite it into her skin: be careful what you wish for.

He tugs her close, a vicious pleasure to chase out the ache, and she comes with that same stupid trust. But fuck, it's good to have her here: her body pressed close and willing, her curves under his hands. She whimpers, a soft hot sound against his neck, and Owen grimaces in some kind of victory. His hands are gripping her hips hard enough to hurt her but he doesn't give a shit, thrusting against her like he's fucking through all these clothes. She's pliant and wanting and has no idea how she got so lucky and he loves that, her look of shock. He can hear her say his name under the music but he doesn't reply, just pushes his leg between her thighs and grinds her down on him, watching the way that her eyes flutter shut and colour floods to her cheeks.

Everyone...” she begins, half-pulling away, but Owen catches her close and smirks against her ear, rolling his hips against her 'til she moans. She's coming apart in his hands, slowly losing herself, and Owen fucking loves it: he twists her round on the beat, pulling her back to him and feeling the pound of the bass between the small of her back and his hips. He thinks of her cunt, hot and wet and ready for him to fuck, and the thought makes him burn.

That good?” he murmurs against her ear, low and harsh. “How long's it been for you?” But he's not interested in her embarrassment: he's all caught up in the way her arse moves against him, how uncomfortable his jeans are getting. He wants more too: slides his hands up over her belly, feeling her shiver against him, cupping her breasts. He's always been a breast man and fuck, they're good: full and firm in his hands and he rolls his thumbs over them, savouring the way her arse presses into him as her back arches.

Not here,” she's saying, but her hands on his wrists aren't really even trying to push him away and he pulls her back tighter, his breath on her cheek as he rocks his hips, thrusting his erection against her arse.

You want to come back to my place, Tosh?” he growls.

She looks at him, eyes wide, and he loves the way she squirms as he presses his lips to her ear, says hot and slow: “'Cause I'm going to fuck you senseless.”

The clock reads four ten and shit, there's no time. He's got to go, get back and get ready and get this over with, finish it all up before dawn so he can contain it safely in one awful night. The space suddenly seems smaller, and as Owen steps back he trips over her heels, swearing,

and she laughs, breathless and nervous. What kills Owen is the way she leans against him, trusting and soft, her breath on his neck.

Sorry,” she says, and he grips her shoulders and spins her back to the wall, feeling the impact through her bones. He presses his mouth to hers so hard that their teeth clash and her hands twist up in his shirt, half pushing him away and half fucking pulling him in and he wants to shake her 'til she cries, 'til she'll listen and tell him why—why she persists in the face of the overwhelming evidence that life is shit (the taste of Katie's favourite cocktail trapped in her mouth, fading.)

He wants to cut it out of her, this capacity for love, or else it'll kill her.

Owen stops, presses his hands so hard against his eyes that he sees sparks. The blur of the alcohol remains, though: a thud in his head, a cloud over his mind. There's none of the comfort of unreality: every moment feels honest as only painful things can.

Her head. He comes to crouch beside her, carefully feeling for bumps or blood. There's a pocket Maglite in his bag and with it he checks out her pupils before smoothing down her hair, careful not to touch the little clip

which is hard under his hands as he traps her close to kiss, the metal biting into the skin of his palm. He wants to tell her to take it out, wants to rip away every trace of control and neatness that she wraps herself in, but she's already dropping to her knees and he grimaces with sharp pleasure, gathering her hair into his hand and holding it tight. This is what he means, he tells her in the conversation that cuts silent through all of this: that underneath everything, beneath her care and affection, she's just like everyone else: needy and made of flesh.  He watches her reflection in his windows, her body half-invisible over the empty blackness of the Bay, and knows that she'd be like him, Tosh, if she had the balls for it: she'd screw and lose herself in strangers and dark streets, and the thought of her no better than him makes his cock twitch as she takes it into her hand
{ slides up under her skirt, pressing her thighs apart deftly. She says something, pushes back, but it's muffled against his neck and he ignores it, scrapes a finger over her wetness and feels her hips buck. He can smell her cunt in the air and her body stops fighting, her legs spreading wider for him, her mouth moving against his neck saying the opposite of her rolling hips as he fucks her, thrusting two fingers in and out of her body.

It's Toshiko Sato in the back of a cab, crude and cheap and animal and Owen feels a vicious surge of pleasure.  He meets the cabbie's eyes in the rearview mirror and bares his teeth in a smirk, his fingers thrusting in and out of Tosh's body and her little whimpers hot against his neck as she presses closer, hides }

her face peaceful where it is cushioned against the pillow.

It's okay, darling,” Owen says, because she needs to know even if she can't hear it: “I'm taking care of you. We'll have you good as new in no time.”

Tosh lies there, silent and still, and Owen thinks he can hear the kid downstairs' stereo again, the bass bleeding through the walls. This is Tosh's flat though, and it's quiet as the grave. The tiles in the bathroom remind him of a morgue and Owen keeps the light off because of that and the brightness of it, the way that everything under it would be revealed in all its stark ugliness. Instead he fumbles through the cabinet half-blind, holding packets and bottles up to the light coming through the doorway to read. Tampons, contact solution (hardly touched), antihistamines, and then finally a packet of facewipes.

Coming out of the bathroom and seeing her, lying as if in sleep, is like

Katie sleeping soundly, her cheek squashed against the pillow. Owen lowers his bag down, toeing off his shoes, and stretches out beside her. She continues to snore quietly, utterly oblivious to him, and Owen watches over her.

The alcohol comes up in him with a vengeance and Owen leans back against the wall, shutting his eyes and taking slow breaths 'til the nausea subsides. For Christ's sake, he has to focus: finish here. Clean up. Leave her to sleep.

When he reduces it to what he's been taught, unpicking her body as an impersonal mechanism, then it's easy. He kneels beside the bed, takes out a wipe, and cleans her face. The eye-liner leaves thick black traces over the wipe and Owen has to cup her jaw, pressing on her cheek to hold her still as he clears away the marks of the night.

We've got to get you being more careful,” he tells her as he moves down to the smeared traces of her lipstick. “Don't want you getting hurt, do we?”

His hand trembles over her mouth and her lips catch on the wipe, parting to reveal the line of her teeth and the soft pink of her tongue

hot on his cock, sliding over the underside as she sucks. Owen leans back against the wall lazily, letting her work on him, and thinks distractedly that she's not very good, not in the objective sense, but she's eager, and that's all he needs: the sight of Tosh on her knees in front of him, her cheeks drawn in as she sucks him with all the infuriating keenness of someone who thinks this means something more than an aching jaw and a mouthful of spunk.

He wouldn't let her do it if she didn't want to, and a tiny part of him wishes she didn't, but the much bigger part of him is in motion, now, this inexorable momentum hurtling him forwards. It's the same part of him that considered telling her to blow him in the taxi, the same part that wants to push her back and jerk off over her face. He's always been like this, he knows: if fate is coming to get him then Owen would rather turn and kick it in the balls than run.
{ “You always want to know the worst in people,” his mother says, her face filled with quiet disgust, }
and she's right, almost: Owen wants to make it the worst, because then life can't give him any more surprises.

Tosh pulls back for a moment to catch her breath. A chain of spit links her lower lip and the head of Owen's cock and that's hot, but what gets Owen is the way she looks up at him: hopeful and fucking naïve as ever.

When he pushes her head towards him again she doesn't protest, just takes him into her hand and mouth. Gripping her hair tighter he flexes his hips, slowly thrusting against the soft dampness of her tongue, feeling her mouth move as she accommodates him. So helpful, Tosh, so eager to please after the challenge of Suzie, and Owen moves harder, pressing his cock deeper into her mouth. He's always loved this, the pleasure of destroying always hidden under the pleasure of fixing. He's had people in his hands at the edge of life and death and Tosh, here, now, struggling to please him, is on the edge of something just as terrifying. It's fascinating, watching how far she'll go for him: watching as he fucks away all of that infuriating decorum and she's left closed-eyed and open-mouthed, drooling around his cock.

It gets better when she lets him use her, but that's not what makes Owen come. What does that is the moment that he pushes too far and he feels her gag around him, her hands scrabbling up to push back at his hips.

The look on her face stays burnt into the back of his eyelids as he comes.



( Part Two )

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November 2012

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