notevery: (Default)
[personal profile] notevery

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 [ profile] pocketmouse, with last minute lifesaving help from [ profile] cruentum 

(Part one is here.)


Once he's done being sick Owen rinses out his mouth, hulking down over the basin to stick his head under the tap. The water dilutes the taste of vomit, but nothing gets rid of the rank traces of half-digested beer.

He can feel tomorrow hovering over him, waiting to hit


looking down at Tosh, come over her shirt, and feeling what they've done threatening to become real. Whatever the world might think Owen knows that he's a bloody good judge of character, thanks, and he can see exactly what a good person would do now: apologize, reassure her, treat her in return. 

But Owen's never been a good person
{ “what did I do?” his mother cries, curled in on herself on a kitchen chair with his half-made packed lunch on the floor. “What did I do to deserve you?” }
and so like always he does the right thing twisted, giving her what she wants but breaking it first. Pain shoots up his body as his knees hit the floor but he grits his teeth through it, ready to tug her in—

What breaks his heart is that Tosh reaches for him first.

He removes the top layer of stuff in his backpack—bandages, painkillers, pill bottle, antiseptic wipes—and finds the little tube of arnica, concentrating hard to twist off the cap in his clumsy fingers. It makes a little splash as it falls to the ground when he drops it, and Owen is half surprised to see water there, the fallen glass lying at the edge of the puddle.

He goes to pick it up, but his hands close on the air. Not yet. Not when the memories are still so close.

Tosh is exactly where he's left her, and Owen is careful not to touch her as he straddles her legs. The task at hand, that's what he needs to focus on: fixing. There are ugly bruises over her sides

where Owen digs in his fingers, pinning her hips to the floor by his bed. He's never been so aware of the smallness of her before: the tiny lines of her trapped in his fingers, the unblemished skin of her belly and the heat of her, all tenacious life caught up in his hands. He scrapes himself over her, each touch (not blonde not tall not her) opening old wounds. 

Owen?” she says, hopeful, and he ignores her: just brings down one hand to shove up her skirt and pull down her knickers, taking a greedy breath of the full smell of her cunt, looking with an appraising eye at the wet curls of her pubic hair, slick with her arousal. 

Owen,” and he pins her hip down again as she tries to move, spreading her legs wide and settling between them, seeing the muscles over her stomach tense as his breath presses over her. 

Owen, look—” 

But he doesn't, not once, just gives her a cursory rub, deftly slides his fingers over her clit, before resting his palm on her belly and twisting his hand to part her lips. She's flushed and trembling for him, her panting loud in the air, and whatever the fuck she's saying Owen doesn't care, just wishes she would shut up—and she does, more or less, as he licks and sucks and bites at her, always pushing just a little too far, forcing her to come until it hurts, until her fingers are tight in his hair, half-pulling half-pushing, and he's finger-fucking her through another jagged climax as he suckles at her clit. 

Owen takes her apart with the relentless efficacy of surgery, and he realizes that if this isn't fucking then it's vivisection.

There's nothing he can do to get rid of them, now: the arnica leaves her bruises glistening and pasty but it's all he can do and Owen forces himself to go on, because that's what they do, what they've always done, every last one of them. Tosh too. It's her he needs to do this for, her who's relying on him

You can't fix it like that!”

but he can, he is, and he focuses on all of the details—the bruises on her shoulder blades from hitting the wall, the lines of his nails over her back—so that he won't have to see the whole: Tosh lying

still and spent on the floor, her body splayed open for him, all undone in a way that fills him with savage joy. 

His cock's soft after the alcohol and his orgasm but he jerks himself roughly to hardness, his balls aching as he looks at her looking at him. He can't stand seeing her like this while he's so cold. He can watch her hurting and he feels nothing and he needs to leave her stronger, closed: not looking up at him like this, with all of that confusion underlaid by so much fucking hope, the nerves in her eyes and the lust burning on her cheeks. 

The thrill of the hunt is gone, now; he's sickened of the blood of the kill, the way that she quivers. Instead he's left with this dull ache, a gnawing emptiness in his chest, and he wants to hurt her until she learns that she can't be like this, can't be open and trusting, that she has to fucking learn or she'll get really hurt someday, and he doesn't get why she doesn't know already, wants to find where all this hope comes from, wants to know what makes a person let themselves get hurt over and over and over—

When he's finished Owen carefully pushes back the sheets, pulling them up over her body and tucking her in, smoothing the duvet down over her shoulders. She looks very peaceful there, with the bruises hidden and the line of her eyelashes dusky over her cheek. The sheets hide a multitude of sins. Underneath them her body can be how he imagines it: untouched, undefiled, 

fleshy and so horribly human under his hands as he picks her up, carries her over to his bed. She arches up to him, pressing hot wanting kisses over his face, that tight hold she always has on herself loosened, and Owen jerks away. Even that's better, though, than the way she looks at him afterwards: with care, with sympathy, with fucking pity, and her hand is gentle on his arm: 

Owen, it's okay.” 

The fact that she has not learnt yet panics him, somehow: this knowledge that whatever is unbroken in her is strong, or perhaps it's just an appreciation of what is snapped in him, of that thing he's missing. Has been missing. Almost forever.

That's the thing about Owen, though: he's an arrogant bastard, and challenges make him determined. He finds the drawer without looking, pulling out the lube, a condom. When she begins to close her legs he reaches forward a hand, presses her thighs apart again, rubbing a finger warningly over her. 

You don't want to be done yet, do you?” he says, and Tosh looks from the condom to him and licks her lips and shakes her head no, not yet.
{ “No, Owen, I don't want to. No.” }
But no, not yet, this is this memory and she does want this, looks up at him with dark eyes and spreads her legs wider for him. 

When his fingers trace over her arsehole, though, she tenses: her thighs tightening again so Owen has to press one knee between them, twirling the tip of his index finger over her, feeling her quiver. 


His cock jerks, trailing precome over her thigh, and he presses a little harder, testing how tight she is. 

Tell me you want it.” 

What?” she says, but her legs are no longer trying to close and he can see her pulse racing at her neck, the flicker of blood under her skin. 

Tell. Me. You. Want. It,” Owen repeats, slow enough to see her flinch with every word, to see her cunt twitch. 

Tosh squirms the same way she moved in the club, embarrassed, and the sight makes Owen ache with lust: to know that she's just as filthy as the rest of them, under that posh exterior, just as much a whore as everyone else Owen's ever met. That terrifying trust is hidden under her awkwardness, the way she kissed him erased by how tense she has become. 

He leans close, breathing in the sound of her whimper as he trails his mouth up her belly, stopping to bite at her lips. 

You're a slut for me, aren't you, Tosh?” he whispers against her skin, sliding his tongue over her lips. “You want it.” He times the push of his finger to her intake of breath and slides it deep into her, feeling her tense about him, hearing the hiss that fades into “Owen, Owen, Owen...” 

He holds her apart with his free hand, forcing her thighs down, opening her up with an inexorable surety. He can see how much she loves it, how dirty she is, and his balls tighten as he sucks at her nipples and lazily fucks her arse with his fingers. Toshiko Sato's arse, Jesus, and three of his fingers opening her up, just for him. When she makes a little noise of discomfort he ducks his head further, finding her swollen clit with his tongue and licking it steadily 'til the whimpers drown in moans and he leans back, breathless. 

Tell me you want it,” he says, and she looks as if she'll cry. 

Owen, I can't—” 

It's easy to slide three fingers of his other hand deep into her cunt, watching her twist and arch and cry out. 

Tell me.” He's always loved pushing people to their limits and Tosh is right there ready to fall apart in his hands; he could push her over, has already pushed her far beyond her comfort zone, has left her face to face with what scares her most: what she wants. 

Please,” she chokes, and Owen ducks his head to suck at her clit, looking up at her from between her thighs, savouring the hot flush of shame over her cheeks. 

Please what?” 

She's sobbing now, great dry sobs, and he can't stop himself bucking against her knee. 

Tell me you want me, Tosh. You want my cock in you, don't you? You want me to fuck you up the arse. Hard.” 

Tosh shudders and clenches and stammers “please, Owen, fuck me, please,” and he sucks at her clit in warning and she chokes out “please fuck me up the arse,” and the feel of her breaking in his hands makes Owen heart skip a beat. He's hardly aware of fumbling for the condom and slicking himself up, just positions himself between her thighs, one leg up over his shoulder, and pushes his cock into her arse and Jesus fucking Christ, she's tight and hot and the look on her face— 

Owen, Owen, Owen...” 

He holds her wrists above her head with one hand, forcing them down on the mattress 'til her skin blanches under his grip, bracing himself to pull out and push back in with a jerk of his hips. He can see her twist with pleasure as she keens, all that reserve and fucking composure gone and she's human like everyone else, the smell of her cunt in the air, her breathing and her pulse. He digs his fingers into her hip and fucks her, relentless. The sweat glistens between her breasts and he can see his bruises over her thighs and his cock throbs inside of her making her whimper, so fucking responsive it's almost like not being alone. 

When he's close, his approaching orgasm tearing at the rhythm of his thrusts, Owen brings his hand from her thigh and rubs at her clit, pressing at her until she cries out and tenses as she comes and fuck, fuck, fuck he presses into her again and again and comes so hard he can't breathe, emptying himself into her, still not empty enough. 

They lie there in the wreckage of her boundaries, and Tosh is finally quiet.

Owen puts her dirty clothes in the washing machine, and finds her shoes' place in her wardrobe. As a last-minute thought he turns off her alarm clock, slipping it into a drawer.

And then...

Another silence bleeds into this one,

Tosh lying there still, the bruises surfacing under her skin. 

The silence. The silence. 

That, Tosh,” he says as he throws away the condom, not looking at her not-Katie hair and her not-Katie body, “is why life is shit. You love people and then they fuck you over. They hurt you or they leave you or they die, and there's nothing you can do about it. So just grow the hell up.” 

The silence, and her feet twisting in the sheets, over and over and over,
{ as his mother sleeps fitfully, twitching with dreams. All of Owen's hatred has burnt itself out, leaving an aching deep in his chest, and though he hasn't done it since he was a kid it's the easiest thing in the world to toe off his shoes and stretch out beside her. 

His mother moves towards him instinctively, wrapping herself about him like a child hungry for gentleness, and Owen watches over her. }
You'd better go home,” he says, quiet and harsh though his throat is aching and he hurts all over, each and every inch of skin. “Work tomorrow.” 

He's pushed for years, put endless pressure on these wounds, and still as she walks out the door they're bleeding.

It feels strangely intimate: turning out her lights, checking the gas, finding her keys so he can lock the door from the outside and slide them back under. He hesitates with them in his hands before putting them down on the table, looking at the door

hard under his hands as he hammers on it, breathless after the long run from his flat to hers, his legs still pounding with impact of his trainers on concrete. 

Tosh! Open the door, Tosh!” 

There's a moment where he thinks she won't, that he's succeeded in making her closed, and the thought makes him feel sick. The door swings in soon enough though and she's standing there: small and curled in on herself and looking up at him with something verging on fear. He thinks he can see a tinge of hope, still alight. 

What are you doing here? You made it perfectly clear that you wanted me to go.” 

Owen curls his hand around the door frame just in case, trying to show all of his earnestness and all of his regret
{ and the fear of sitting there, after she'd gone, alone with himself, and the sinking in of it by drip, drip, drip }
Just let me in, yeah? Please.” 

After everything, she does, and he is so glad not to be alone that he can hardly talk: just looks at her, arms curled protectively over her chest
{ closing her legs, the bruises sliding up over her skin }
and her kitchen counter between them, a half-finished glass of water with a trace of her lipstick at the rim. 

What do you want?” 

He takes a deep breath, tries to find some composure, and his voice is shaking and he can feel everything in his backpack, every last tube and packet. “Listen. I thought—what happened there, Tosh. It was.” He swallows, and she's just watching. “We can fix it.” 

A silence again, and just before Owen starts choking on it Tosh relents, scraping her nails over the back of her hand and nodding, just once. 

I know something's wrong,” she says, and the sinking feeling starts in the depth of Owen's stomach before she even finishes. “I want to help you, Owen. I've always wanted to help you.” 

He can see the words coming before they're said and he has to jump in, saying “No, not like that. I mean we can start again.” He slides his backpack from his shoulder, unzipping the first pocket and reaching in. “We can—” 

Tosh is suddenly pale,
{ whimpering and twisting under his hands }
taking a step back and looking at him with wide eyes. “Owen,” she says weakly before repeating it stronger: “Owen, don't tell me you mean that.” 

Mean what?” he says, trying to keep his voice light. “Tosh, it was—I was—look, I'm sorry. Something's so bloody wrong. Here.” He points vaguely to his temple, the rattling of the pills in their box close to his ear. “Bad—everything. But we can fix it. I can make it better.” And for every step she takes one back, her hands up now between them, slim clever fingers holding him away.

No. Not that, you can't fix it like that.” 

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.” 

No, Owen, I don't want to. No,” she says, but he knows it's for the best, knows that this is what they need—to make things better, for him to stop her hurting. He hates to see her so afraid but he has to do this, wants to tell her that he's doing it because he cares for her, he's doing this to say sorry, but she's fighting too hard to hear him—kicking, hitting, scratching, lashing out with all of her strength. A part of him is so glad to see her fight like this, feels better to know that she's strong. 


There's fear in her eyes that hits Owen harder than all of her cries and he wants to apologize more than anything but her fist impacts with his nose and he's suddenly spitting blood, half-dazed by the shock of it.

She fights as hard as she can, Tosh, and still she can't get away: he presses her hard against the fridge, pinning her body with his, forcing the retcon and then the sedative into her mouth, reaching for her glass of water. She struggles against him desperately
{ her body grinding against his, curved and hot }
and he's tilting her head back, fingers pressing white marks on her jaw as he raises the glass. 

Swallow it, Tosh. I'm helping you, I promise, I promise,”
{ “just swallow it,” and she's choking on his come, a trail of it over her chin and dripping down onto her shirt }
and finally she does, her whole body shuddering and her eyes wet with tears and it's spilling everywhere, down over her jaw and onto her shirt.

Once he's finished being sick again Owen stands still in the darkness. He has to go; needs to get back to his flat, take his own pill, collapse for a few hours' sleep before work. He can't though, not yet. In the quiet and the emptiness there's only him and what he's done, with no loud music or strangers' bodies through which he can escape his own company.

Owen can't think of anything more horrible.

It's just for a moment, he tells himself as he slips back into her bedroom. Only one moment of weakness.

Tosh is sleeping soundly, her hair spread out over the pillow. Owen lowers his bag down, toeing off his shoes, and stretches out beside her. She is silent and dreamless, and Owen watches over her.


(no subject)

Date: 2009-05-18 03:55 pm (UTC)
ext_2955: black and white photo of flying birds and a lamp-post (Default)
From: [identity profile]
Beautiful. And sorted: all the fighting paid off. I like the use of right-align.

(no subject)

Date: 2009-05-18 05:10 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Intriguing format! I've done two-timelines before and loved it but definitely wasn't this clever.

Printing it off now as [ profile] cruentum says this is worthy of utmost concentration and attention. Looking forward to this!

(no subject)

Date: 2009-05-19 12:00 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
A too-short lunch hour yesterday forced me to stop reading 10 pages in (I did print it off). Didn't get back to it until late last night, but I cannot deny that the story haunted me all afternoon as I was working.

So much to say! I have never seen such powerful characterization of Owen in my life. Not only was the whole setup ingenius, but the path you took Owen, and yes Tosh, through was compelling, painful, beautiful, tragic all in one.

Damn, this is good fic.

You really have written something special here. This is the first fic of yours I've read, but with this quality of writing, your work is definitely tops on my list.

Congratulations on an amazing piece of work. (Can you tell I absolutely LOVE this?)

(no subject)

Date: 2009-05-18 09:04 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Lord, that is powerful. I was totally captured. This was gutwrenching. (Sorry, more complicated sentences are apparently beyond me right now... long day at work paired with a strong gin-lemon *takes a swig* does it to you...)Dark and solemn and full of despair. Intriguing formatting, made it all the more intense.
Bloody well done.

(no subject)

Date: 2009-05-19 12:22 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I read this this morning and I have been kind of percolating on it all day, trying to think of what I wanted to say.

I love, love, love the formatting. I love the idea of Katie all through this, and the whole element that Tosh wants to fix Owen, and that Owen then decides to fix Tosh. The rawness of Owen's anger really hits me hard, and Tosh, while rather pitiful, isn't weak, and I think that's a delicate balance here, as she is filtered through Owen's bitter lens.

Thanks for writing this.
Edited Date: 2009-05-19 12:22 am (UTC)

(no subject)

Date: 2009-05-19 06:43 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
and ouch
but this
Owen wants to make it the worst, because then life can't give him any more surprises.
sums up owen for me exactly and perfectly

(no subject)

Date: 2009-05-20 08:54 am (UTC)
jo02: scared-kitty (Default)
From: [personal profile] jo02
This was compelling on such a base level.
The use of right-justify and the chopping back and forth was a powerful mode of pushing the rawness forward.
I felt a stab of disappointment when the retcon came out, but I don't think it's all going to go back to normal and sweetness and light in the morning so I hung onto that. And I'm glad she fought for her life at the end and I hope that he forgot to put arnica on her bruised knuckles so there's just the small hope she'll look from them to Owen's damaged nose and draw her own conclusions.
This was brilliant, thank you.

(no subject)

Date: 2009-05-24 11:37 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I've had this page open for days until I could come up with a cogent comment worthy of the careful effort that went into this piece, but I can't apparently come up with that, so I'll just say that I loved this, I'm hugely impressed, and I think the technique is incredible. Good idea, terrific execution. My favourite bit was "so fucking responsive it's almost like not being alone." So much contained in that phrase.

Thanks for this.

(no subject)

Date: 2009-06-16 05:31 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I've been hoping to read something this raw and real and sick and beautiful in TW fandom. It woke me up in a way today in which I haven't experienced in a long time. So, often in life we have to be wary of what we wish for.
I love the weird contrast of form that Owen's care takes in each alternating narrative.

(no subject)

Date: 2009-08-03 08:24 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]

This was just oh, so very painful and real and Owen and Tosh that I think I might be bleeding a little too. This line, in particular...

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

...killed me, because it voices everything and makes it tesselate like your lines and, yes, wow. So good that it's a little scary.

(no subject)

Date: 2009-09-05 02:43 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Owen/Tosh is definitely something I crave, and there's not enough of it in the fandom. What little there is generally leaves me unsatisfied, but this is something else.

I loved your use of the right-align (something I've NEVER thought of before, and so very clever!) and the way present flowed into past and vice versa. There were a couple of moments I was confused (I had associated the {} brackets with Katie and I think Tosh was mentioned inside one of them), but I think you've managed to very expertly weave the past and the present into the story while still giving us a very clear look into Owen's head.

I liked that you waited to reveal the retcon card -- leaving a little bit of mystery in a story is apparently a concept many authors, published or not (Dan Brown I'm looking at you!), don't understand.

While I would love for Owen and Tosh to, you know, be alive and together and happy, I do know it's not possible, so it's wonderful to read a fic that explores them both so truthfully and without reservation. Owen was destroyed by losing Katie and I'm sure continues to resent Jack for the whole situation, but it is so absolutely like him to channel that anger and rage into an emotional wall. He is calculating and scientific, so it takes something huge to integrally change him, and of course once it has, he merely uses the same formulae he's always used, but he's using them to prove a different theory. He would have done anything to save Katie from pain, and failing that, he's going to do anything to save himself from pain. Poor boy's wrong, though, 'cause he's just causing himself more. He's trying to save Tosh pain, too, but he seems to forget that he can't transplant his own life experience into someone else's head. I love that he watches over her.

Sorry, this is super long! This has spurred me into discussion mode. Man, I'd kill to see a follow-up to this story!

(no subject)

Date: 2010-01-08 07:55 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
An interesting and well written story. I'm glad I read it as I don't usually go for Tosh/Owen stories but it just sucked me in.

(no subject)

Date: 2010-02-11 03:09 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Wow. This is raw, and powerful, and I think it captures so much of Owen's struggles and conflict. Absolutely wonderful. Thank you!


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