Rating: NC-17, for mild pr0n
Characters: Barry Zito, Huston Street
Dedication: lastcatastrophe, who introduced me to baseball, and littlestclouds, who requested Zito smut once upon a time. Hey, I'm only, what, 3 years late?
Disclaimer: It's all lies!
Author's Notes: This takes place the night the A's clinched their division, 2006. Zito's POV.
Tonight Doesn't Count
You're pretty drunk, and hell, you should be.
The hotel hallway is bright and blurry, and the loud, drunken laughter (not yours, of course), might be a problem if your team didn't have the whole floor. And a couple of them do literally have the floor, rolling around on the carpet together, fists full of shirt as they try breathlessly to wrestle each other into submission. It's a pointless competition, because the moment one pins the other down, he starts laughing and the strain is too much for him; next thing you know, he's the one flat on his back, trying to sit up.
"Swish," you nod at the current winner and he makes eye contact with you, a move that leads to his downfall.
Someone runs past you, bumping your shoulder in the process, and you laugh inside as you watch him disappear down the hallway. You've never seen him smile this much before; there's this magical thing called the playoffs that takes twenty years off a man's life. You rub your shoulder where he hit you, but it's nothing, and it's the wrong shoulder, anyway.
You swipe your keycard through the reader; once, twice, three times before it finally turns green, and you blame it on a faulty lock rather than the fact that you were swiping the card the wrong way. You swing the door open, and someone barrels past you (bumping the wrong shoulder again) into your room, kicks his shoes off, then takes a flying leap onto your bed, moonlit dust swirling in his wake.
Maybe this isn't the right room, and you stare at the door, reading the numbers. 815. This is your room, isn't it? You should have written it on your wrist, like Kielty does. Too many road trips, too many cities, too many room numbers, he says. But tonight that wouldn't have helped you, because tonight the champagne would have washed it off, and tonight that thought makes you smile.
If this isn't your room number, you don't know what is, because nothing else is coming to mind. There's a thought in the back of your mind, worming its way around in there like it's the answer to everything--the "aha!" moment in CSI: Anywhere when they figure everything out and it goes to commercial break. The body - it's not a body, it's a person (too many fucking crime shows) - hasn't moved, so you don't think it's going to help you out much.
You're standing in the doorway, keycard in hand, as your feet won't step into the room because your brain hasn't told them to yet. It hits you then, of course, the keycard. Your keycard is yours and it unlocks your room, so of course this is your room, no matter what the fucking number says. God, you're brilliant, you solved the case.
But there's always one more mystery, one more twist, and you step quietly into your room, closing the door behind you. Approaching the bed, your heartbeat pounds loud in your ears, and you feel a little dizzy. He's resting comfortably on his stomach, arms by his side, his head resting on the pillow turned away from you so you can't see who it is. Who was that masked man, anyway?
You walk past the foot of the (your) bed, and now you can see that it's Street lying there, sleeping like an angel. Maybe it's just the moonlight, but he looks like he's smiling, and hell, wouldn't that be perfect? If Huston Street smiled in his sleep?
The thought crosses your mind that you could just leave him there and go sleep in his room instead. But you'd have to get his keycard, which is probably in his wallet in the back pocket of his jeans, and you don't exactly want him to wake up with your hand cupping his ass. It's not that he'd get mad at you; the problem is that he wouldn't.
Kick him out it is, then, and you sit down on the edge of the bed, shaking his shoulder gently to wake him up. "Mmm," he grumbles softly, as he eases his eyes open, and he wakes up just like in the movies; there's no series of scrunched up, ugly expressions, or drool trickling out the corner of his mouth, it just takes ten seconds and then he's blinking up at you, his face blank.
"You're in the wrong room," you say, softly. "You have to go back to your room now."
Recognition flickers in his eyes, and then he strikes, so quickly that you can't do anything about it. Only it doesn't feel quick, it feels slow, his arms moving through molasses as his fingers lace behind your neck and pull you down so that he can kiss you. You're surprised, at least you think you are, but your brain doesn't buy it, and when your lips meet, you don't pull away, when his lips part, you part yours too, when he teases his tongue into your mouth, you taste champagne. You kiss lazily, forgetting for a moment why you shouldn't kiss him, and he runs his fingers through your hair, your scalp tingling at his touch.
He releases you finally, his "mmm" not a grumble now, but a sound of contentment. You sit back up and look away, trying to keep your voice even. "I think you should go back to your room now."
You feel him sit up abruptly, shaking the bed. "Why?" he asks, full of puppy confusion.
"Because this is my room, and I want to go to sleep."
"Don't what?" you ask, turning to look at him, and this time you really are surprised, because he looks anything but confused.
He's got fire in his eyes as he leans forward, kissing your neck hotly as his fingers slip into your jeans, tracing a path along your skin from your sides to your navel, but his lips are all you can concentrate on, burning soft against your neck and your jaw, and he whispers harshly, "Don't go to sleep."
You try to lean away from him, but you end up cupping his chin in your hand and tilting his head up, readying him for your kiss. You have a very bad feeling about this, like you've just placed a bet that you can't cover, but the debt won't be collected until later, and Street's in front of you now. You kiss him hard and he bites your lip; you run your hands down his shoulders and slip them around his waist, holding him close, feeling how warm he is, hearing how much he wants you with every breath he takes, knowing you want him just as badly and thinking that makes it all okay.
He fumbles with your fly; drunk fingers take longer to work, but he figures it out, and then you're lying on your back, fingers laced behind your head, breathing shallowly as his mouth does things to you that blow your mind. You're arching your hips, making him speed up, letting him know you're getting close and he's got his hands on you now as well, fingers inside you, and you're pleased you've taught him so well, in every way.
He kisses lightly along the crease of your thigh afterwards, and you pull him up, dragging him slowly over your body. The cold metal of his belt buckle grazes your dick, still sensitive so it hurts, and you jerk your hips away from him. He looks at you strangely for a moment, then reaches down and starts to undo his belt. You grab his wrist firmly, holding his hand in place, and you want to say "no" but your voice says "I'm sorry" instead.
"Z, let me." He isn't whining or begging; he sounds like he knows what he's doing, like he just needs you to listen to him right now.
"I said I didn't want this anymore," you say softly, the words sounding hollow even to yourself.
"You didn't mean it." He kisses you, but it feels like he's trying to silence you.
"I meant it. I'm just not doing a very good job of showing it," you sigh.
He starts laughing, and it's like the drunkenness is rising in him. "You said other things that you don't mean. You said I'm like a little brother to you."
"You are." You smile, and you roll onto your side and he does the same, so you're facing each other, hands on each other's hips.
"I don't know about you, but where I'm from, guys don't fuck their little brothers." His lips are wet, swollen, and somehow they make every word he speaks seem obscene.
"Really? I thought you were from Texas," you joke, but he doesn't laugh, and neither do you.
You finish the job he started, unbuckling his belt, and you kiss him, tasting yourself on his tongue and easing back into what it's like to be with him, because there's a magical thing called the playoffs, and that means that tonight doesn't count, and you can do anything you want.
"It's okay, Z, I don't need--I don't care if you've got someone else, other people. This is no strings attached."
You push his pants down and take him in your hand, effectively shutting him up. You used to think that it could be like that, no strings attached, that there was no cost, but you found out that it wasn't true, that all it meant was that you just paid later, when you said goodbye, and you know you'll say goodbye to Street when the magical thing ends.
But there's no place for any of that tonight, and you kiss him hard, so he knows that you are everything he needs, and that he is everything you've got.