Recovery

Oct. 7th, 2007 03:15 am
heartofthunder: (Default)
[personal profile] heartofthunder
Ocelot and I decided it would be best to keep this "illness" of mine under wraps - I don't want the men to know there was an assassination attempt. Bad for morale. Ivan, in particular, would have a difficult time with it.

I don't want him to worry. It doesn't suit him.

So the official story is that I've sequestered myself to finish some essential reports, things I absolutely need to get done, now that we're so close to completing the first phase of our plans. I know Ivan won't like it, but he'll also understand. It sounds plausible, after all.

It won't be long until I'm better, in any case. Especially with Alexei close.

[livejournal.com profile] heartofthunder: Volgin was feeling a little better.

He sat in his bed, propped up by several pillows, resting quietly against the headboard.

He hadn't yet gotten frustrated by his enforced bedrest - it was still a welcome thing, to be able to nap at will, to simply close his eyes and succumb to sleep. He was stronger than he had been only a day ago, though, and could sit up for longer periods of time.

Alexei would be here soon, with dinner for them both. That was another welcome thing, these visits from Alexei, getting to spend time together while he convalesced. Catching up on the four years they'd spent apart.

And honestly, he'd been so busy before he'd been poisoned that this almost felt like a holiday.

Volgin heard a slight noise at the door, the sound of the security lock releasing, and his scarred lips pulled back in a smile.

Alexei had arrived.

[livejournal.com profile] snow_death: Volgin was particular about very few of the staff knowing the location of his secondary bunker.

He was so specific about who was allowed to access the bunker area, in fact, that he forced the cooks to leave his dinner on a cart in the elevator, where a trusted emissary- in this case, Lynx, would pick it up and wheel it to his auxiliary quarters.

It amused Alexei, after all his unpleasant jobs of killing and wetwork, to wind up for a brief and shining moment, no more than a de facto bellhop for his commanding officer.

As the security cleared, he carefully wheeled the cart past all the feet of the titanium door and into the clandestine quarters.

"Your dinner, uncle Lenin," he said, wryly. "Shall I chew it for you?"

[livejournal.com profile] heartofthunder: "I can manage myself," Volgin rumbled, affectionately.

Alexei was a welcome sight - tall and strong and handsome, bright blue eyes gleaming with good humor, lips curved up in a smile.

Mostly importantly, he was alive, and that little miracle still had the power to catch Volgin with wonder.

"It's good to see you, Alyosha."

It hadn't been long since they'd seen each other last, but long enough. This time, though, Volgin was feeling strong enough be able to carry a conversation over their meal.

"I must be feeling better," he mused. "I'm actually hungry."

[livejournal.com profile] snow_death: Alexei pushed the cart alongside the bed.

"That's good to hear. I'm starving too, actually. The smell of whatever they made you is incredible."

He sat down on the bed with easy impunity, feeling the dent caused by his weight far less than usual, with Volgin's breadth and largesse to balance him out.

Lynx smiled to himself as he reached for the silver cover of the meal service.

"Let's see what they made you tonight, shall we?" he said, as he lifted the domed cover and slid it underneath to rest on the lower shelf of the cart.

"Ah," he said. "Well, it seems we have a number of things. Some jellied meats and kulebiaka...and some hot green soup for a first course- and for the main course, it looks like goose with apples, comrade. Perhaps we should start with soup, so it doesn't get cold."

Alexei set a silver tray across the Colonel's vast lap, and carefully served him a bowl of the soup, which was steaming nicely and garnished with chopped hardboiled eggs and sour cream, sprinkled abundantly with fresh dill from the kitchen greenhouse.

He gave Volgin a vague smile and laid a napkin across his lap, setting a broad soup spoon on the tray beside it.

"Eat up," he said, encouragingly. "It's nice to see an appetite in your eyes again, Yevgen."

Then he sat back against the footboard to watch him, reaching for his own bowl of soup as an afterthought.

It was still a little strange, being served meals like this, and not only hot meals on trays, but meals in courses, earmarked for he and Volgin alone.

Even when they'd been younger men and lovers, their meals together had not been like this.

"It's nice," he remarked, dipping his spoon- but pausing, seeing the salt and pepper on the cart, and grabbing them both in his broad palm, setting them within Volgin's reach. "...that you want me to take your meals with you."

[livejournal.com profile] heartofthunder: Volgin smiled, fondly.

"I thought it might be a good way for us to spend some time together. Catch up."

He dashed a bit of salt and pepper into his soup. His fine motor control had improved rapidly, and now his grip was sure, if somewhat weak.

Carefully, he ladled the soup into his spoon and managed to lean forward just enough to get it into his mouth without spilling.

"Delicious," he murmured.

That single bite was an accomplishment, an improvement over his stay in the infirmary when he had to be fed by hand.

He paused to regard Alexei with a gaze of the quietly settled blue of a becalmed sea.

"There are some things I want to tell you about...just so you understand," he said. "It's been so long. Circumstances have changed...even if my feelings for you haven't."

[livejournal.com profile] snow_death: Lynx drew a breath, and held up a hand.

"I know," he said. "You can save your breath and your strength, Zhenya."

He paused, nodding, setting his spoon down, letting it slide gently into the broth.

"...I know about your lover."

Alexei smiled slightly.

"I've known since the day they told me you took me out. They made sure of that."

He reached for his spoon again, lowering his eyes.

"I've even seen his picture."

A quiet laugh.

"Not what I'd have expected, but then...well, what has turned out like I expected?"

[livejournal.com profile] heartofthunder: Volgin blinked in surprise, then let out a single laugh.

The motion hurt his chest a little, made it twinge with a lingering ache, but the pain was not wholly unwelcome. It sharpened his focus, reminded him he was alive.

"All right," he said, softly. "I didn't realize you knew."

He regarded Alexei for a few moments, but he saw no trace of pain or resentment in Alexei's face, no tension in the broad hand that dwarfed the spoon within it.

"I was despondent for a long time after you..."

Volgin paused and shook his head.

"...after you were gone. And then, I met Ivan, and he made me smile. It had been so long. I wasn't sure if I deserved something good, after what had happened, but..."

He shrugged, the slightest rolling motion of his massive shoulders.

"But I was grateful, just the same."

Volgin glanced down to eat another mouthful of soup.

"I can't leave him, even though you came back, but at the same time, I'd like it if you and I could continue where we left off."

He studied Alexei for a few moments.

"I don't know how you feel about that," he said quietly. "I don't want to ask you for something that's not fair."

[livejournal.com profile] snow_death: Alexei looked up, his gaze steady.

"I don't feel anything about it, Zhenya. Why should I care who you choose to love? It's not as if it's within a man's control. I want you to be happy- and alive."

He finished off his soup and set it aside with a gentle clink of china.

"You know that I would do anything for you."

[livejournal.com profile] heartofthunder: "I know, Alyosha. I know."

The whorl of scars at the side of his mouth tended to ache when he talked, but Volgin was long used to the pain from those disfiguring marks. The strain pulled his smile into a rictus, turning it sinister, even though he meant it to be otherwise.

Alexei knew, though, what was truly in his heart.

"I trust you like no other," he murmured.

Not even Ocelot had Volgin's faith so absolutely.

"I am alive...thanks to you. And also thanks to you, I'm happy."

Volgin smiled, and even his scars were gentle.

"You came back to me when I thought you were gone forever. I couldn't ask for anything more. But yet..."

His gaze ran down Alexei's broad torso, remembering.

"Once I'm feeling a little better...well, there are a lot of things I'd like you to do for me," he began, his voice thick and indulgent.

"...and to me."

[livejournal.com profile] snow_death: Alexei smiled slowly.

"Really," he said, in a low voice.

He took the soup bowl away from Volgin's tray and replaced it with another plate, heaped with goose breast and slow simmered, spiced apples.

"Then you had better get your strength up, sir," he said, without moving his eyes from Volgin's face. That gorgeous, scarred face, which made him think of the body below, also scarred and powerful, worthy of his desire and devotion.

He handed Volgin a fork, a satanic smile touching the corners of his mouth.

"You know I don't pull punches."

Nor did he pull thrusts, bootstraps or submission moves.

[livejournal.com profile] heartofthunder: Volgin chuckled, darkly.

He let himself bask in Alexei's expression for a few moments, imagining what was behind the promise of his wicked gaze.

"I know that. It's one of the things I love about you," he murmured.

He began to eat, savoring the succulent meat. The cooks had spared no expense or effort in the meal, as always. That was why Volgin had hired them.

"It's been far too long. I'm very motivated to get well soon."

Volgin glanced up, eyes gleaming.

"It's good to know that some things haven't changed."

[livejournal.com profile] snow_death: "Some things," said Alexei, pouring Volgin a cup of kvas, and taking some for himself, "will never change, Colonel."

His lip bent darkly, and he raised his glass slightly.

"Prosit," he declared wryly. "As your friend Krauss would say."

[livejournal.com profile] heartofthunder: Volgin scowled.

"He's not my friend," he grated, eyes narrowing as he thought about the German. "I'm upset with with him, for not telling me about you, and what he did, sending you away."

A faint, absent spark crackled between his brows.

Volgin blinked in surprise, almost startled by the spontaneous manifestation of power. It had been the first he'd seen since he'd fallen ill.

He chuckled darkly.

"I guess I must be getting better. I'll be electrocuting Krauss in no time," he said with a smirk.

[livejournal.com profile] snow_death: Alexei blinked slowly, unperturbed.

"There's a vatrushka for dessert," he said. "I thought you might not want to look at chocolate for a while."

Yes, he could cheerfully watch Krauss frying under Volgin's sparking fists. Although he doubted it would come to that. The German would find a way to squirm out of his day of reckoning, cockroach that he was.

"Are you getting sleepy, Yevgen? Did you want me to take this away?"

It wouldn't be wise to tax him too much so early.

The effort of speaking seemed to exhaust him still, though less now than at first.

[livejournal.com profile] heartofthunder: "No..." Volgin said. "I'm all right, Alexei."

The meal made him feel warm and relaxed, it was true. But he wanted to bask in Alexei's company for a while longer.

He couldn't finish all of the meat the cooks had prepared for him, however. They gave him as much as usual, though his appetite was not what it had once been.

With a sigh, he lay back, and watched Alexei eat.

"Are you getting along all right? Is there anything you need? Ocelot took care of you and your men, didn't he?"

[livejournal.com profile] snow_death: "I'm good. And my men are good."

He paused.

"Ocelot is a good soldier, and a competent man. He's been nothing but accommodating, according to your wishes, sir."

Alexei put aside his plate and removed Volgin's tray, setting it on the cart and closing the cover.

Hesitantly, his fingers sought the Colonel's shoulder.

"I'd like to lie with you for a while, if you don't mind," he said, eyes averted.

Lynx paused.

"It was close, Zhenya. Too close. I need to reassure myself."

[livejournal.com profile] heartofthunder: Volgin smiled, sleepy and sated.

"Come here," he said softly. "Lie next to me. I'm not going anywhere."

He needed help to lie back down prone - the effort of sitting and feeding himself had taken a lot out of him. Alexei's hands were gentle and sure, though, and got him settled.

"Thank you, Alyosha," he murmured. "I think I'm going to sleep well tonight, so I'll say good night now."

[livejournal.com profile] snow_death: Alexei whispered 'da' and lay down beside Volgin, one massive celestial body curving to cup another. Despite the fact that he lay above the beclothes and Volgin lay below, Lynx felt very close to Yevgeny once more.

For the first time since his near death, since Zhenya's near death- they were alone and content. It had been four years since he'd felt this particular familiarity and closeness.

Alexei pressed his lips to the scarred brow, letting the touch linger and be felt.

The tiny buzz of electricity against his mouth made him secretly pleased. He was recovering. He would be fine.

"Should I stay?" he whispered. "Until you fall asleep?"

[livejournal.com profile] heartofthunder: "I'd like that," Volgin said, closing his eyes.

"To know you're here with me...like before."

He settled, relaxing, drawing warmth from Alexei's body, so familiar, as close and comforting as a blanket. The hands and mouth that could draw aching pleasure from his body could also be gentle and tender.

"Only...it's better than before. I appreciate it more now, after having lost it."

Drowsily, he sighed, and felt himself drifting.

The last things he knew were the press of Alexei's body, his masculine scent, and his quiet, steady breathing.

"Good night, Alexei, " he murmured.

[livejournal.com profile] snow_death: "Dream sweet, Zhenyasha," Alexei intoned, letting his arm wrap around the broad torso, as his hand came to rest over Volgin's.

With his body pressed against the mamontov's, he felt a twinge of loss. It would have been nice to stay here, ensconced in their private subterranean world for a night at least, but Alexei knew he had other obligations to deal with first.

When Volgin fell asleep, he would need to find Leshovik, make sure he was all right. The guy had been like another person since the event with Aryol, and Alexei sensed that Viktor needed him- not in any concrete way, but more just his presence.

That and-

Alexei winced slightly.

He needed to keep an eye on his men, in case they got any entrepaneurial ideas.

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