Fiction~~You Shall Know the Truth~~Ch. 3
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Know the Truth
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You shall know the truth, and the
truth shall make you mad. ~Aldous
Looking at his modern day Sleeping Beauty, Elias took another deep breath. First things first; he had to wake up Gabriel. If he didn’t push himself away from the wall and get over to rouse the man, nothing would come of their attempted escape in the first place. The pounding of his heart was so loud it was nearly drowning out his thoughts. It was the first time he’d ever cursed his lack of military training. The people in the holo-vids made this look so easy.
Rubbing sweaty palms on his pants, he stumbled across the room and reached underneath the table for the emergency kit. Based on how quickly his angel had gone down, there was a good possibility they’d shot him with Koryar. It always caused that telltale small twitch that Gabriel had exhibited just before his eyes closed, and it was used commonly enough in neurological research that there should be some Gonari to counteract it in the kit.
It was such an unbelievably cruel drug to have used, Elias thought angrily. He wondered how often it had been used in the months the man had been here. It was usually only used for a few minutes, hours at most, while someone had to be aware but unmoving while the mind was given outside stimulus. A number of conditions couldn’t be accurately diagnosed without it, proving it to be beneficial, but to be trapped in that state for the weeks at a time was unbelievable. If Gabriel was still inside the mad creature he had seen, it would be a miracle.
Recalling some of the tests he’d performed over the past few weeks, his legs began to shake again. Culture samples were not always pain free to obtain. If he’d known his patient could still feel, he would have added an analgesic. The poor man must have been suffering all this time. Hands shaking worse than his collapsing legs, he dropped the case on the floor with a deafening crash. Without another sound, he dropped to the ground, scrabbling at the slick plastic until he finally got it open and searched for the proper syringe. The brightly colored thing was easy to spot and he grabbed at it. He held it in his hands, staring up at the body lying still and silent on the table above him.
Moments ago his dream had been realized, his one true love had been a walking, talking, thinking being, and Elias would have ended it all if he hadn’t come to check on him this one last time. White spots danced before his eyes and he panted as he tried to keep from passing out. He paused taking several deep calming breaths. No matter what, he had to stay focused until Gabriel was safe. They didn’t have time for him to be weak right now! No, he didn’t understand exactly what was going on, and it made him feel sick and dizzy that his research had almost been used to kill someone, but it was irrelevant! He didn’t need to know why or how it had happened. Explanations had to wait, but freeing his miracle couldn’t. Getting out of this horrid lab was the top priority.
The palsy hand shaking was back again as he pulled himself up by the table and held the syringe to the man’s arm. He hesitated and closed his eyes for a brief second when the needle was close enough to penetrate golden hair sprinkled across Gabriel’s skin. If he was wrong about which drug was used, this could kill him.
Doing nothing meant the poor man would die anyway.
With a gasp and a screaming but ignored need to close his eyes again, he plunged the syringe through the smooth skin and depressed the trigger. For a few seconds, nothing happened. Panic nearly set in, had he been wrong? His breath refused to leave his lungs as he waited, watching. Perfect lips gasped hoarsely, eyes flew blindly open, and his body convulsed.
“Please, please let this work,” Elias prayed unconsciously.
Fierce blue eyes swiveled his direction immediately. Bonds strained as muscled arms and legs pulled against them with savage jerks. Elias found himself the recipient of a piercing stare that sent shivers through him. After seeing so many loving glances from those eyes in beautiful fantasies, witnessing an actual emotion in them was both heady and terribly depressing at the same time. His secret angel did not look happy to see him.
Gabriel growled an unintelligible order, his mouth obviously not quite free from the drug yet, and Elias startled back before he could control his reaction. Deep, slow breaths, he counseled himself, just control your breathing and you can do this. There was an unexpected stab of hurt to Gabriel’s reaction. This was not the Gabriel who he’d loved in his mind. He had to remember that. This was a stranger, and the only thing Elias really knew about him was that he needed help. Everything else was simply self-involved musings brought on by his family’s unproved theory, and they meant nothing.
Another feral growl and a fierce, pointed glare made Elias wince. He looked ready to tear him apart, like a magnificent beast. He’d been worried about something like this, but…god, it was so painful to be confronted this way! His Gabriel clearly didn’t even like him. Did he show any recognition at all? Was that it? Maybe he thought that Elias had been party to condemning him to this paralyzed half-life. If he thought Elias had anything to do with this, he would come after him the moment he was free, no matter what assurances Elias might offer.
He couldn’t be left like this.
Breathing deeply one last time, Elias moved in close and started working on the bindings, ripping off monitoring attachments where they clung to Gabriel’s skin.
“I’m sorry,” he whispered softly, keeping his eyes on the thick straps to avoid any accusation in Gabriel’s. He missed the softening of Gabriel’s face as the man watched him move to the second strap. “I’m so sorry. I didn’t know. What they had done to you; I didn’t know. I swear it! But I’ll make sure they can’t touch you again like that. I can do that.”
Elias moved on to the other side of the table and worked on the second set of straps. “I c-can’t get into the communications station and call for help, but I think I might have someone who can get you on the next shuttle. We have to hide you until then.” Elias concentrated on the last strap, trying not to panic as the clasp refused to budge.
“There’s nothing but wilderness outside the lab, but if you can hide there until the shuttle comes, you can get out. You need to hide there until I come to get you. We c-can get you off this station and the Planetary Force will help you. I’ll testify what they did to you,” he concluded fiercely. He would get him out of this.
A large hand suddenly slapped his out of the way, startling him so badly he yelped. His angel finished undoing the last strap by himself. Elias swallowed nervously as Gabriel sat up, ripping the last few wires from his skin. He barely glanced at Elias as he slid his legs to the side and stood, turning until he’d examined the entire room. Staring up at his face as Gabriel finally turned to look at him, Elias wondered for a moment if he was going to die.
The cold stare directed his way was so predatory it hardly felt human. He’d never really thought about just how large Gabriel actually was, he realized, his neck tilting back. Knowing intellectually he was a big man never registered, he’d always been laid out on the table and helpless. However, he was so obviously capable of beating Elias senseless it was terrifying. He deliberately let his eyes drop to the pulse in Gabriel’s throat; if he was going to be beaten to a pulp by the man who might have been able to love him, he didn’t want to look at the expression on that beloved face while it hurt him.
“Look at me.”
Elias shivered at the smoked-liquid falling from lips he’d tasted a thousand times in his head. The sound was exactly like he’d imagined, deep and sweet like syrup. His head rose slowly until he saw brilliantly blue eyes. They drilled into him so coldly that he winced away after a moment, following the line of Gabriel’s jaw down to his chest where the skin was already beading with sweat. His eyes widened when he realized what he was doing and he snuck guiltily back up to Gabriel’s face, hoping that his lapse hadn’t been noticed. He was so used to being able to look at his love with none the wiser, it was going to be extremely difficult to remember to keep his gaze in safe areas only.
He wasn’t sure that face qualified as safe, however. The man was mocking him with his eyes and Elias flushed uncomfortably. He’d never imagined that expression on Gabriel, like he was contemplating something cruel and enjoying the thought. He didn’t think he liked it all that much.
“Your name.” The tone was sharp and Elias visibly flinched.
“Uh…I…Elias,” he whispered, licking his lips nervously. Gabriel was so…harsh. He wasn’t supposed to be like that, was he? “W-we need to go. I don’t know how long we have before someone comes, and people will be getting out of the dance soon. We have to go now. If- if you’re not going to kill me, we need to hurry.”
Focusing past his own worry, Elias realized with a horrified jerk that his gaze had wandered again and was completely focused on Gabriel’s groin. He whipped his head away and stared at the door. Yes, you insensitive clod, that muscled body was naked. Gloriously, beautifully naked, but that didn’t mean Elias should be ogling him. It wasn’t the man’s fault he didn’t have clothes. He kept his face turned to the door for a minute only, every muscle jittery and tense while not one word broke the brutal tension. When he couldn’t stand it any longer he looked back up, and trying not to let himself be completely intimidated by the hard, blank expression on Gabriel’s face.
“Please. We need to leave this place,” Elias said. Why couldn’t he raise his voice? He needed to tell the Not-Gabriel what to do so that the man would be able to survive, but all that was coming out was a pleading near-whisper.
“Then we should go, little man.”
“E-Elias,” he corrected faintly. At least there had been no attack, he tried to reassure himself. It wasn’t what Elias had expected, but it wasn’t as bad as it could have been. He could have charged at Elias the moment he was free, but he hadn’t. Actually, he hadn’t taken more than a moment to absorb the room before he’d started talking. How could there be this much coherence? He’d only just been awakened from a drugged paralysis, after being beaten and taunted; he should be confused, and needy, and softer so that Elias could…
“Weapons?” Elias stared dumbly at the curt question. Gabriel raised his hand and made gestures in front of his eyes. “Do. You. Have. Weapons?” Gabriel repeated slowly.
“Uh…no.” Elias said, chewing at his lip nervously before he realized what he was doing and stopped. This wasn’t what he’d been expecting.
Elias shook his head, flushing. “N-no, I didn’t have time. I-I didn’t think… ”
“I’m naked.” Gabriel’s voice was annoyed and Elias flinched again. Overlaid in his head were the warm, loving murmurs from Gabriel as they’d made love. The fact that Gabriel was speaking about something Elias hadn’t thought of first, combined with the frustrated irritation he used when he did, was still too much for him to take in. It felt like someone had recorded another person’s voice over his lover’s and must be waiting in the wings to jump out and say ‘surprise!’
“I- I think there’s a warming b-blanket here we could use,” Elias stuttered, turning away and blinking fiercely. This was not turning out how he’d expected at all. Stay focused, he admonished in his own mind. He fumbled as he opened the nearest cabinet. His entire body stiffened, every inch suddenly prickling with awareness as Gabriel’s arm reached over his shoulder to pull the thin, insulated cloth out himself. The muscles in his forearm flexed as he grasped it, the naked length of his arm taking up the entire side of Elias’ field of vision and reminding him that the man’s entire body was sky clad. Millimeters from him, huge and gorgeous, was Gabriel. Naked. Elias stood frozen, his breath coming in small pants as he could feel the heat of another male body behind his own. Why wasn’t Gabriel saying anything? What was he doing?
“Too small.” Gabriel’s voice slid into his ear along with a small caress of heated air and Elias shivered.
“I’m s- sorry. Maybe I can find –“
“Supplies? Emergency kit?”
“I-ah- the kit is by the table, on the floor,” Elias said hoarsely, still staring at the empty shelf as Gabriel stood, unmoving, so close behind him that he could smell him, salty with sweat he could imagine trailing across his abs and lower. “But what about –“
“It is easily remedied.”
He heard Gabriel walk away and his stomach quivered in reaction. After a few short breaths, he finally felt safe to turn and look. Saliva pooled in his mouth. He watched the harsh lighting cast shadows along the cleft of the man’s bottom as a golden braid flicked in time to his step. God, he loved those cheeks. They were so firm and taut; he could almost feel his palms gripping them tightly. Gabriel started to turn and Elias looked away quickly. He had to stop this. This was a rescue, no more. Anything else would have to wait for later. The man was obviously more irritated than interested; Elias had to deal with that. He had to wait.
At least he could comfort himself with the thought that help hadn’t been rejected. He should be thankful for that much and worry about anything else at a later date. Taking a deep breath, Elias walked forward, his breath hitching just slightly as he passed within touching distance of golden skin on his way to the door. Would he ever get to touch him again? He knew they would be perfect together, but the thing invading his dream lover’s body didn’t, and the odds were against him having any fond feelings for Elias. Too much had been done to him for that.
Elias felt tears prickling again and angrily blinked them back. He hated weeping. Taunts from his time in the university over his inability to control his tears still bothered him; it indicated a lack of control that was unacceptable in a professional. And it was horridly embarrassing to show this level of upset in front of the one he was supposed to be strong for. He felt like a complete fool.
“We’ll need to be quiet,” he whispered, sniffling once as he reached for the door.
“I am not the one making noise. Clothing and weapons first, or no one will survive anything.”
Elias couldn’t think for a moment as the heat of the passing body emanated through the thin fabric of his dress shirt. A manacle made of hard fingers held his eyes, strong fingers rubbing against the inside of his wrist as the man shifted. Hard hips pressed against the side of his waist and the smaller man almost froze feeling the pressure and heat from there all the way along his back to his shoulders. He was being leaned on as casually as Elias would shake someone’s hand. He nervously cleared his throat, trying to remember what he was supposed to say.
“Two corridors over, th-there’s a cleaning room. But then we need to leave! There’s a door in the opposite direction that leads t-to an emergency exit. I listed it as something that should be fixed because the alarm for the door is faulty but I don’t believe they’ve done anything to it yet. ”
“Then we shall use it.” Gabriel determined.
Pulling Elias back in an unexpected protection and moving forward, he carefully peered out the door, looking up and down the hallway. Elias watched that fluid body, casual in its nudity as though he escaped from secret labs in the buff all the time. After a brief inspection, Gabriel moved out into the corridor with prowling grace, releasing Elias’s wrist. He held the kit and blanket in one hand and gestured impatiently as Elias stood in the doorway, staring at him. Gabriel’s body was just so…
“You! If you are to lead me out of here you must move from that position.”
“W-well, yes, I was just saying…”
“An obvious habit for you. Now, which way to the laundry?”
Elias stared and shook his head slightly before walking out into the hallway. Gabriel was so short with him. He was even rude. There was no doubt that he must be upset after what had happen, still he should realize that help was being offered, shouldn’t he? Shouldn’t that grant a person some measure of simple courtesy as a rescuer? Even if they hadn’t been lovers in real life, the least he could do is be polite. Then maybe someday they could be lovers. A sudden image of Gabriel and he kissing slammed him in the gut just before a hand clamped down on his shoulder and jolted him to a stop. “W-what?”
A beleaguered sigh, and then, “Wall.”
Elias looked ahead and flushed as he realized he was centimeters away from having run face first into another wall. They’d already hit the end of the corridor where it dead-ended into another. “I- well, it..”
“Attacked while you weren’t looking? Do you truly know where you’re going?” he asked skeptically.
“Yes! I just…I was thinking.”
“That type of ‘thinking’ will get me killed. Pay attention.”
Stunned amazement and outrage came boiling up inside as he worked the words in his head. HIS distraction would get the other killed? Was nothing in his dreams real? What about Elias’s safety, the people of the outpost? Did he even care? With all that had been done… Elias stared at the wall as his shoulders sagged. All they’d done, which had been absolutely nothing, of course.
Although the man didn’t have to be so blunt about how selfish a creature he was.
“You know…you never told me your name,” he muttered, still staring at the wall while trying to regain his composure. He just needed a few seconds, and then he could face him without flushing like some pulp fiction heroine.
“No, I didn’t.”
It took a moment before he realized that was all, and he humphed to himself. Rude and cold, it described his personality completely, making Elias like him less and less. Maybe the one true love thing was a mistake. After all, ‘the one’ had never magically appeared before, maybe he’d made an error in interpreting what he’d felt. He tried to examine the feelings inside his head for flaws as he finally began to turn from the wall and he let out a muffled yell as he was suddenly yanked backwards, a hand over his mouth.
Hands dragged him from the wall far back into the original corridor. They stood hidden nearly at the door they had just exited. Elias flailed, kicking back with his legs ineffectively as he pulled at massive arms. What was he doing?!
The grip tightened sharply in warning. “Quiet,” he hissed into Elias’ ear. “And be still; someone’s coming.”
Elias stopped struggling to get free but soon started struggling for breath instead. They would be caught! They didn’t have any weapons at all and who knew how many of the guards would catch them? His beautiful man would be killed. He gulped in air as quietly as possible. Hands had moved away and soon he was left standing alone while his ‘helpless partner’ crept silently up to the corner, head cocked to listen. What was he doing?! Elias grabbed at his arm frantically.
“Hurry,” his whisper seemed too loud. Lightning calculations ran through his head. How long was the length of the hall, and the rate of sound disbursal through an oxygenated atmosphere? They could still be safe. “If we run we might be able to make it to the other end before anyone sees us!”
“I told you to be still,” Gabriel growled softly, turning to glare down at him and spoke slowly. “I will deal with this. You will take your hand off my arm, stay here and be quiet! Understand?”
There was no time to respond before Mr. Gung-Ho suddenly sprang from their concealing corner and into the corridor crossing it. There was more than one voice crying out in surprise and Elias hurried after him. They should have run; they should have run! It didn’t matter anymore. They had been found out, and with more than one person, he couldn’t leave Gabriel to deal with it on his own! He’d need help!
He gasped as one of the room guards from before turned as soon as he came out. A stix swung out at his torso and he hunched protectively, ready to feel the shock of it burning across his skin. A pained grunt that wasn’t his own was heard instead. The offender was flung to the side as Gabriel swung one bare leg throwing his opponent into the wall. With a pause long enough to glare at Elias ferociously, Gabriel turned back to the other two men he was engaging, his body fluid as he blocked and dodged their weapons. One guard swung too eagerly, throwing himself off balance. Gabriel danced close, spinning abruptly so that his elbow connected with the man’s nose with a sickening crunch.
There was an incandescent, joyous glow on the face of this stranger. The Gabriel known in his dreams was a kind and gentle man. One with no desire to harm those around him, how could he accept this new being in front of him? The last guard visibly screwed up his courage, yelled and charged. Elias lost track as the guard from before was suddenly coming at him again, his face swollen from it’s impact with the wall.
“You little bastard,” He hissed. “I’m going to fuck you up. Shitty little fag.” Elias stumbled back from him, brain working at furious speed trying to think of what to do. Instinct had him ducking and darting under the upraised arm when the man took a swing at him. Swinging rapidly around he saw the same arm coming back at him, about to smash into his face. A rapid whoosh of air left his lungs as he was suddenly yanked away by the stomach and flung to the side. He caught himself on the wall and turned in time to see Gabriel use his elbow again on the man’s solar plexus. The force of the hit had the man doubling over in pain. He threw a hard uppercut as the guard collapsed forward in pain. His knee crunched into the man’s face driving shattered fragments of skull into his brain when he shifted and leapt towards Elias again.
“Gaaaaaah!” Elias had his hands over his face for a moment before he realized he hadn’t been hit. It seemed that one of the earlier guards had thought to take him as a hostage while the fighter had been distracted. Amazingly enough, his surprise defender had been close enough to get to Elias himself. He had…helped him?
“Get back into the other corridor!” Gabriel grunted, blocking one man only to get hit with a shock stix in the leg by the other. Apparently his rage was enough to drive any thought of an actual effect from the electricity out of his body.
“I only want to help- ieeeee!” Elias’ eyes stung and his head was on fire as he was yanked sideways by his hair, and out of the range of the downed men’s knives. Half-dragged while he tried to regain his feet, he grabbed the man’s hand holding onto his sensitive head while he was shaken. “Stop!”
A flash of pale brown, an agonized half-cry silenced with a sharp thrust, and Elias’ head was suddenly free. He could barely register the change before another strong push had him stumbling away. The stix hit Gabriel’s arm instead of Elias’ head where it had originally been aimed. There were harsh grunts and heavy breathing, sharp smacks and the sickening sounds of bone hitting flesh. Elias finally regained his equilibrium with enough time to turn at final sharp crack. The last man fell to the ground, his head tilted unnatural angle. Gabriel turned without pause at the bodies surrounding them and stalked over to Elias where he stood leaning and pale against the side of the corridor.
Elias clasped his hands together, knuckles white with stress as he looked at the three men on the floor. Not a single one looked like they were breathing. Gabriel had killed them all? He thought he might throw up. The two of them were murderers, now. They’d killed the guards and any chance at a quiet escape! Now the police would be after them as well as the company and - He jumped startled as Gabriel punched the wall next to his head with a heavy, metallic slam of his fist. Brown eyes looked up, still stunned and unable to process what had just happened.
“The next time I tell you to stay hidden, you do it! Understand?” The menacing tone, combined with the other hand that suddenly gripped his jaw, froze his mind. What if Gabriel killed him, too?! What if he wasn’t really his true love and now…
With a frustrated growl, Gabriel leaned down and his lips slammed over Elias’. Harsh pressure shoved lips into teeth and his mouth was forced open as a hot tongue invaded, taking control. His lips instantly bruised as his mouth was taken. A minute at most, and then Gabriel pulled back, nodding to himself as he looked at Elias’ dazed, slightly aroused face.
Gabriel released his grip and Elias nodded jerkily. There was no reason to have done that, he thought, feeling like a part of him had just been violated. He shouldn’t have done that. Kissing was not a punishment. It had been three against one, a normal person would welcome a little help in a situation like that! Gabriel had no right to get angry over this. He’d just been trying to help. As Gabriel turned away, Elias swallowed, touching his swollen lips. He really didn’t think he liked this version of Gabriel.
“Stop fondling your lips,” Gabriel ordered, standing by one of the guards. “Go open the door to the room. These guards need to be somewhere before they’re found. I can’t hold the door open and move these at the same time.”
Elias stared at him. He’d just finished forcing himself on Elias’ mouth, and now he acted as though it were nothing. How could his prince do that!?
“Now, little man! Move!”
A nervous scrabble against the wall had him standing, and Elias turned and trotted quickly down the hallway. It was his responsibility to save the victim, he reminded himself. It didn’t matter if Gabriel didn’t like him, or was rude, or… or even if he was so deadly it was making his heart thump out of his chest with fear and a bit of excitement that made him afraid all over again. His mistake in this matter was his to rectify, after that, he’d have to decide if he ever wanted to see the man again.
It didn’t seem likely, he thought as he reached the door. The reality of this Gabriel was simply too….real.
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