ultracosmicrays: (ray/ray just another day)
[personal profile] ultracosmicrays
Cosmic!Rays AU, Part 13

Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5 | Part 6 | Part 7 | Part 8 | Part 9 | Part 10 | Part 11 | Part 12



A cloud of pinkish-grey dust billowed around Ray as he leapt the few feet from the hatch to the ground. He coughed and wiped his streaming eyes, blinking furiously to get rid of the grit. Behind him there was a roar and a thud as Riviera set down echoed by a smaller thud as the hatch touched ground.

"Looks like those extra couple of seconds were well worth it." The reverb the bay leant to Vecchio's voice amplified the sarcasm.

"Get out here, Vecchio. We got terrorists to catch."

"Yeah, yeah, hold your horses. They're not going anywhere."

Ray thought about conceding Vecchio's point and then he saw it. Subura cutting down through the air, coming in to land. It was lit with a strange, orange glow and for an instant Ray thought the terrorists had set fire to themselves. Then he noticed the blurred edge to the light and realized it was almost SOL-set. They were going to have to move quickly if they wanted to get this done by dark.

He strode across the distance that separated the two ships, ionizer pistol drawn and shouting into his Com.

"Get out, get out, get out! Hands on your head. Hands on your head. Get out now. Get out, get out, get out!"

It wasn't the proper procedural spiel but Ray always favored a more direct approach. And it appeared to be working for him too. As Subura touched down the hatch began to open. Ray trained his pistol on the dark opening. Bring it on. There was a rumble of vibrating metal and then a triker raced along the ramp which was still a couple of feet off the ground, the bounce as it hit dirt the only reason that the shots fired at Ray missed their mark. Ray flung himself out of the way as the triker made straight for him then veered sharply, heading for the hills.

"Yeah," muttered Ray, face down in the dust, "Didn't see that coming."

There was a screech of brakes and a shadow fell over him. Ray lifted his head and squinted. Vecchio loomed above him on their triker. He quirked an eyebrow. Ray leapt up and got on.

"Don't say a word," he said as Vecchio gunned the engine and they screamed after the escapees.

"They're following us!" Ray heard one of them yell. Then the air was filled with the monotonous rat-a-tat of bullets firing off one after the other, none of them managing to find their target. What the hell kind of terrorist has no weapons training? thought Ray.

Ray unholstered his gun, keeping it as steady as he could as they bounced over the rocky terrain. He fired off one shot, then another. Nowhere near. Dammit. He patted himself down. Where were the damn things? Beside him Vecchio reached into his top pocket and pulled something out. He waved it under Ray's nose.

"Looking for these?"

Ray decided to leave asking what exactly Vecchio was doing with his glasses until later. He took them and put them on, blinking as everything came into focus.

"Mother! They're just kids."

"I know." Vecchio's voice was grim.

Despite the head start there were three suspects on a vehicle meant for two. The COPS gained ground, Ray taking shots only when he felt safe he wouldn't accidentally harm any of them, hunkering down behind the visor in between. The only problem with getting closer, Ray realized, was that it would make it harder for the terrorists to miss. The way they were shooting he'd probably die from a bullet meant for Vecchio. That didn't seem fair. Ray felt something whistle past his ear, proving his point.

"Okay, I've had enough now."

He leaned out to the side, down low, the ground speeding past underneath him. He took aim and fired. There was a loud bang and the triker in front lurched and veered to one side, flinging one of the suspects off. His head met rock with a sickening crack that could be heard above the roar of the engines. The boy lay still.

Ray sat up, horrified. That was not good. That was not meant to happen. They were supposed to stop. They had almost caught up now; there was no way they could run. But still they charged, torn rubber flapping uselessly as the wheels span. The remaining shooter had stopped, was casting wildly about him. Ray reckoned he had maybe ten seconds before the boy reloaded. He took a deep breath, stood in his seat, aimed and fired again. There was another bang as he took out the other rear tire and the triker stumbled to a dead stop.

Vecchio screeched to a halt beside them and Ray leapt from the triker, knocking the shooter off his perch and barreling him on to the ground. The gun flew from the boy's hand and skittered to a stop in the dust. Ray slammed him onto his front, wrenching his arms around to the back and binding his wrists together.

"You have some rights," he snarled. "I forget what they are. Make 'em up."

To his right there was a blur as the driver started to run, followed by a thump as Vecchio's feet hit the ground a couple of feet from Ray.

"Stop!" Vecchio yelled. "There's nowhere to run."

The boy did stop. He swiveled round, knife in hand. Vecchio stopped too.

"Come on," he said, holstering his pistol and holding out his hands in front of him. "Don't do anything dumb. Drop the knife."

But the boy put it to his own neck. Ray winced.

"I'll kill myself. I'll ... I'll be a martyr and people will talk about me and they'll see we're serious. I die for the cause!"

Vecchio took a small step closer, then stopped as the boy backed off.

"Couple of things, kid. First, look around you." Vecchio's voice was soothing and gentle as he gestured at the empty plain. "Besides us, who's going to know you're dead? You think we're going to give anyone a chance to care? The only reason people will talk about you is because your sister's mad at you for leaving her with all the chores and not coming back for your mom's birthday. Not exactly what I'd call martyrdom."

He took another step closer. This time the boy didn't back off.

"Second, what the hell kind of cause is worth dying for? You all go killing yourselves there won't be anyone left to explain what you're fighting for in the first place, let alone benefit if things pan out your way. Which, incidentally, they won't because you're terrorists. What is wrong with logic and reason, anyway? Why do you idiots always resort to bombs?"

He moved closer again. Ray held his breath.

"Give me the knife, son. Your mother went through hell to give birth to you. Don't you go making it a waste."

Vecchio stepped into the boy's personal space, hand held out flat. Somehow he managed to look commanding and totally non-threatening at the same time. Ray was impressed.

"Give me the knife. Your buddy here doesn't need another fallen comrade. Come on." Vecchio's voice thrummed with empathy. It was irresistible and made Ray wish he had a knife to hand over.

Slowly, not taking his eyes off Vecchio, the boy laid the knife across Vecchio's palm.

"Thank you," said Vecchio, still in the same tone of voice. "On your knees."

The boy knelt and Ray realized exactly why Vecchio would never have any difficulty getting laid.

*

It had been slow going back to the ship. With the prisoners tied to the back of the triker they could only go at walking pace. They had stopped at the third suspect but there was nothing they could do, the fall had broken his neck and cracked a hole in his skull the size of a fist. Ray and Kowalski had balanced his body across the back of the triker and Kowalski leaned over the back of his seat, holding it in place until they got back to the ships.

By the time they had returned, dusk had given way to gloom had given way to pitch black, the only lights the soft glow from Riviera. With brisk efficiency Ray and Kowalski had stowed the dead body on Subura and closed up the ship. Now one of the boys was safely locked up in the holding cell and the other sat on the walkway outside, tied to the ladder whilst an argument raged up in the rec room.

"We can't put them in together, I don't trust them."

"What, you think they're going to conjure up a scheme to overpower us with their bumfluff?"

"No. But I don't want them working each other up into doing something dumb. You saw how high strung they were."

"We can't just leave the poor boy tied to a ladder. It's inhumorous."

"What?"

"Mean."

Ray rolled his eyes.

"I'm not intending to leave him there. It violates all sorts of human rights codes. He's going in a cabin."

"Not mine!" came the chorus of three followed by an indistinguishable clamor of why exactly it couldn’t be theirs. It was no less than Ray expected. He walked away and started to make himself a cup of chava. Eventually the hubbub died down but Ray kept ignoring them until he was sure all eyes were on him. He turned and smiled. This was evil and he was going to enjoy it.

"Obviously Frannie can't be expected to share with any of us as she's of the female persuasion." Frannie punched the air. "Which leaves the three of us. And as I'm senior officer I'm taking the executive decision that MacDonald will bunk in with Kowalski. There will be no arguments. Ian, clear out anything movable or valuable and put it in the storage cabin. Oh, and find a bucket."

Ian beamed.

"This will be fun. We can have slumber parties and tell stories in the dark and ..." he was still chatting as he disappeared.

Ray looked at Kowalski who glared back and pointed at him.

"You'll get yours. I will see to it."

Ray grinned.

"I can deal. I'll have had a good night's sleep."

Kowalski's eyes narrowed. Ray's grin widened. He was enjoying this far too much.

"Come on, Kowalski, suck it up. Take one for the team. I'll even make dinner by way of a thank you. How's that?"

Kowalski twitched his head to one side. He looked slightly mollified.

"It's a start."

Ray nodded and opened a cupboard.

"But if I have to hear one story about how he rescued some alien princess from some other alien evil foe and was rewarded by alien sex that involved any kind of alien tentacle-related device then I am killing you as you sleep."

"That's fair."

*

What with filing reports, making dinner, checking on the prisoners and a whole bunch of random stuff that always fell Ray's way, it was late by Titanian time by the time he got to bed. He felt fully entitled to sleep the sleep of the just. Only it wasn't happening, his brain and body were still buzzing from recent events. It had been one thing after another and Ray was struggling to remember when the last time he'd had a decent sleep cycle was.

He tossed and turned, his only solace the grim enjoyment that Kowalski must be having just as bad a time trying to get to sleep in a bed containing an over-excitable Ian. There had to be something he could do. Maybe if he- Ray slid a hand into his shorts and gave himself an exploratory stroke. That felt good. He stroked again, and he felt a little light-headed as his blood decided to abandon his brain for more interesting regions. Yeah, this might do the trick; jerk off, ease the frustration, sleep the sleep of the just-laid, even if it was by his own hand. He closed his eyes.

And saw Kowalski, dressed as he had been for the gym, only this time he wasn't punching anything, he was pulling his singlet over his head, exposing taut, pale muscle. Ray's hand stilled and his eyes flew open at the same time as light spilled across the bed and he turned and looked. There was Kowalski in the doorway, naked but for a pair of shorts, light haloing his hair, face cast in shadow. Ray froze.

"What are you doing?" At least he couldn't be intending to kill Ray in his sleep, what with him not having any.

"I'm killing him. I swear I'm killing him. I'm doing it nice and slow, taking my time. First I'm shoving my fist down his throat and ripping out his vocal cords."

Kowalski advanced into the room, shutting the door behind him, plunging them into pitch darkness which was a pity because in a bizarre, panicky way Ray had been enjoying the almost-nakedness. Ray felt his bed sag as Kowalski sat on it.

"What are you doing?"

"I'm getting into bed. I thought about the rec room but no, I've had enough sleeping on floors to last me a lifetime and I thought maybe you would disapprove if I tried to bunk in with your sister. Move over."

Ray moved before he realized what he was doing.

"No! Go back to your cabin."

"Nu-uh," said Kowalski, pulling the covers down and sliding in. "Will you move? I know I'm skinny but I don't just take up negative space."

Ray suddenly remembered where his hand was and why and he twisted violently round, getting as close to the wall as he could manage. He hoped Kowalski hadn't noticed.

"Just tonight," he said. "I'm too tired to kick you out. Tomorrow you're going back in with Ian."

"No, I'm not."

"Yes, you are."

Ray lay perfectly still as Kowalski fidgeted behind him, bits of limbs brushing up against Ray as Kowalski went through what appeared to be a whole encyclopedia of sleeping positions.

"I'm not."

"Do you ever stop moving?" Ray demanded, throwing a hand out behind him and clamping it on what he thought was Kowalski's side. Only Kowalski had moved again and Ray found his fingertips grazing the top of Kowalski's thankfully fabric-covered ass. It was not an altogether unpleasant experience. In fact it was- He snatched his fingers away and smacked himself quietly in the head with the heel of his hand. This could not end well.

But Kowalski said nothing. He fidgeted some more and then seemed to resign himself to the fact that the only way they could both fit comfortably into the narrow bed was by lying on his side, facing Ray. Ray'd done this with Stella plenty of times. Only then it was him in Kowalski's position, arm around Stella's waist. There wasn't really anywhere else to put it. He wondered what Kowalski would do. Kowalski shifted again and Ray felt the press of a forearm along his back, fingers resting lightly against the outer wing of his shoulder blade. Oh, it was going to be so easy to sleep now.

"G'night, Vecchio," mumbled Kowalski.

"One night only," reminded Ray. Not least because it was prisoners who were supposed to get the sleep-deprivation, not their captors.

"Sure." Kowalski's knee bumped against the back of Ray's sending a shiver up Ray's spine.

And now Ray was going to get to spend the night wondering if Kowalski was doing this on purpose. They never mentioned this in the brochure when he signed up. 'Badly-designed ships will lead to inappropriate work-crushes tormenting you sexually to make sure you take out the tension on your prisoners. This leads to earlier confession and resolution of cases.'

Somewhere in the middle of his internal diatribe Ray fell asleep.

He woke some hours later, nose pressed to the wall, as the natural light timer clicked on.

"Man, I need to take a leak," he heard and groaned quietly. It hadn't been a dream.

Ray felt the bed shift as Kowalski stood up. He heard the door open and couldn't resist twisting around and leaning up on one elbow to take a peek. Kowalski stood just outside the door, turned towards the sanitation cabin. He yawned and stretched, scratching his belly, the shorts riding down low enough to let red-blonde curls escape over the waistband. Ray's dick liked this. Ray told it to shut up and reminded it what had happened with Stella. It didn't shut up.

Across from Kowalski another door opened and Frannie came out.

"Morning, Ray."

"Morning, Frannie."

Ray actually saw the double-take as Frannie figured out whose room Kowalski had come out of. He saw her smile freeze and her eyes try to figure out where exactly she could look.

"Three times," she said, staring resolutely in the direction of the storage cabin. "I'm calling it. Hurt him and you die. Got that?"

"Frannie, you got it wrong," Kowalski tried to explain but Frannie had already swept past him and shut herself in the sanitation cabin.

"Man, I need to take a leak," repeated Kowalski.

Ray pulled a pillow over his head and whimpered.






Part 14
From:
Anonymous( )Anonymous This account has disabled anonymous posting.
OpenID( )OpenID You can comment on this post while signed in with an account from many other sites, once you have confirmed your email address. Sign in using OpenID.
User
Account name:
Password:
If you don't have an account you can create one now.
Subject:
HTML doesn't work in the subject.

Message:

 
Notice: This account is set to log the IP addresses of everyone who comments.
Links will be displayed as unclickable URLs to help prevent spam.

Profile

ultracosmicrays: (Default)
ultracosmicrays

August 2007

S M T W T F S
   1234
5 6 7 8 9 10 11
12 13 14 15 16 17 18
19 20 21 22 23 24 25
262728293031 

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags