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growing, grounding

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Today Barnabas’ townhouse is empty, save for Barnabas himself: as had been requested, he’d sent the staff away for a day’s leave once they were finished cleaning up after breakfast. There is food left prepared for him and his future guests in the kitchen—“We shall be working on a project which will require our utmost concentration, and any interruption or noise would be detrimental to our progress,” Barnabas had said. It was a length to go to ensure a few hours of privacy, but Barnabas hopes that it will be worth it.

He checks the clock. He sips his third cup of tea. He browses his shelves for something suitable to read, only to put each volume back after a brief perusal.

And then, at half-past eleven, he hears a knock on the door. There is a puppyish sort of enthusiasm in the haste with which Barnabas goes to answer it; an eagerness for company.

Jonah Magnus enters first, looking as resplendent as he would for a day on the town. Being familiar with Barnabas’ home, he knows exactly where to put his hat and coat and exchanges his shoes for the house-slippers already waiting by the door for him.

Jonathan Fanshawe is close behind and follows Jonah’s lead. He has his leather doctor’s bag with him, which Barnabas offers to take—Jonathan allows it under the condition that he not look inside, which only serves to make him more curious.

Barnabas offers them tea once they are settled, but each of them declines. Jonathan takes his bag back and Jonah informs him that they will be waiting in the bedroom, so he had best tend to his preparations quickly. Which, all nerves and butterflies, he does: washing his hands and his clean-shaven face and looking in the mirror at his anxiously eager grin.

In the bedroom, Jonah sits primly on the edge of Barnabas’ bed, savouring the gentleman’s nervousness as he tries to decide where to go. Barnabas is glad to have the instruction when, at last, Jonah asks him to undress. He enjoys it when he takes it slow, his Jonah: devours with his gaze each unbuttoning, each slide of fabric, each reveal of bare flesh as it comes. Jonathan watches too, but his eyes are not nearly as transfixing as Jonah’s—they have intrigue and appreciation in them, not Jonah’s vast and stunning hunger. The power in his attention prickles the hairs on Barnabas’ arms, his chest, his soft belly—and when Jonah orders him to kneel, he does so without a moment’s hesitation.

From the doctor’s bag, set down atop Barnabas’ dresser, Jonathan removes a collar and passes it over to Jonah—a handsome thing, all supple brown leather and polished brass embellishments. Anticipating that he means to put it on him, Barnabas shuffles in closer and bows his head in deference, and Jonah buckles the collar around his throat tight enough to make its presence known every time Barnabas swallows, fixing it in place with a small padlock. Jonathan scratches him on the top of the head—like a hound, like a pet—and walks out of the room and down the stairs, Barnabas listening to each creaking step.

“Up on the bed, I think,” Jonah says, snapping him out of it. Barnabas lies down on his back when instructed to do so, and Jonah climbs on top of him, a knee between his legs nudging up against his balls and hands splayed out on the blanket, bracketing his shoulders. He kisses him on the jaw, on the neck, on the mouth, and repeats the cycle. The second kiss they share is luxuriously long and deep, and by the time it has finished Barnabas’ hands have moved to clutch Jonah’s hips and one of Jonah’s palms is pressed against his breast, thumbnail stroking over his areola.

“What do you have in store for me?” Barnabas coyly asks. Jonah does not respond except to pinch one nipple and suckle at the other, and Barnabas soon finds the importance of having that question answered fleeing fast from his mind.

Distantly in his awareness, Barnabas hears the footsteps of Jonathan’s return and the muted slide of glass on metal. Much to Barnabas’ confusion, he has come in with a silver serving tray, an empty whiskey tumbler from the liquor cabinet, and bottle of olive oil from the kitchen. The latter, he understands—he keeps a small bottle of the stuff in his bedchamber to facilitate certain illicit activities—but he cannot comprehend why Jonathan would fetch the other things without also bringing liquor along.

Barnabas scarcely gets a word out to ask before he’s cut off by his own sharp cry, Jonah’s grinning teeth and wicked nails stealing the voice from him. His attention is stolen back too, for a time, by freckled cheeks and rusty lashes and a paralyzing, bottle-green gaze, and he is breathless and still until Jonah has him sucking in a breath through a grimace.

Jonathan says what Barnabas is thinking in telling Jonah, “Delightfully terrible, aren’t you.” Turning his head, Jonah lets his tongue soothe the peaked, tormented nipple and regards Jonathan in his drawers, arranging the straps and buckles of the harness around his hips. Watching that, Jonah has a pleased hum for him. Barnabas has a shudder, because no matter how many times he’s seen Jonathan wear the harness and his wooden cock it still affects him to a frankly mortifying degree.

“Would you like to begin preparing him?” Jonathan asks.

Jonah has the bottle of oil unstoppered in hand before he bothers answering, “I think so, yes.” Sitting on the edge of the bed, he reaches between Barnabas’ already raised-and-spread legs to start easing the first of his slick fingers inside. “Oh, you’re eager today,” he teases, only fuelling Barnabas’ embarrassment. As if he could read Barnabas’ thoughts as clear as printed word, Jonah reassures him with a soft, “Come now Barnabas, there oughtn’t be any shame in that. We appreciate your obedience—you are going to continue to be good today, yes?”

Barnabas pets over his thighs with his hands to will further relaxation into himself: he has nothing to fear from Jonah, but would like to experience the breadth of his expertise as soon as his body demonstrates that it is able. “Absolutely,” he sighs.

“Even if we are terribly cruel to you?”

Barnabas makes the dire mistake of looking at Jonah’s smirk as he says it. Any man or woman would submit to untold tortures, he thinks, for a flash of that enchanting, mischievous smile. There is only one thing to say to that: “Even then. Especially then.”

“That’s a good boy,” Jonah says, and slides another finger in deep.

As Barnabas moans and writhes, his head rolls on the pillow to see Jonathan buttoning the last of the clasps to hold his cock in place—it’s the largest one in Jonathan’s small collection, thick and wonderfully curved. From the downwards arc, Barnabas knows that it’s likely that he’s going to be taken from behind today, and he clenches down at the sense-memory of other evenings, other powerful fornications.

No sooner has he had this thought that Jonah is withdrawing and moving him to his hands and knees, upon Jonathan’s request. He doesn’t feel nearly ready enough to take Jonathan’s cock but he settles down on his elbows all the same, back arched, arse in the air. The glass shifts on the tray and Jonathan’s wrist brushes against his belly as he sets these down on the mattress underneath him—Barnabas doesn’t understand the purpose of this, but he does understand Jonathan oiling up his fingers and satisfies himself with the thought of pleasure soon to come. The mattresses bow under Jonathan’s weight as he takes a seat, leaning up against the headboard. A tap on the hip and a word, and Barnabas obediently shuffles back to be within easy reach of Jonathan’s skilled touch.

As Jonathan fucks him open, Jonah comes to sit on the edge of the bed next to Jonathan to share the very same view. The tray gets moved. Barnabas’ legs are spread, his cock examined by gentle touch. The sounds of deep kissing, behind him. Barnabas dares not look, but he hopes his partners are enjoying themselves.

It is unfair, frankly, how good Jonathan is with his hands. Barnabas cannot count the number of times he has brought him or Jonah to a shuddering, wailing peak on his touch alone. Jonathan is rubbing soft circles over that point inside of Barnabas that makes his all rational sense drip out through his cock, and he tenses and sighs in stages, happy to let himself drift and lose himself to the rapture of it all.

Jonah takes his time in undressing. After setting each garment neatly aside and before starting on the next, he lifts the whiskey-glass to touch it to Barnabas’ cock, ensuring that every bead of fluid that drips out of him is caught and collected. Barnabas catches on to this, naturally, and gives Jonah a questioning look: he, in turn, looks to Jonathan for a response because it was his idea, after all.

But before Jonathan answers, he presses down unexpectedly harsh on Barnabas’ prostate, since he finds it amusing to explain their intentions for him over the whimpering. “We aren’t going to allow you to release until you’ve filled the glass,” he neutrally explains. Barnabas raises himself up just enough to glance between his legs and see the size of the tumbler, wincing when he realizes that Jonathan cannot possibly be serious.

Jonah, a hand petting over Barnabas’ flank while he undoes his trousers’ buttons, is practically gleeful in his tone of voice. “If it takes hours, then it will take hours. We do have all day.”

Barnabas hangs his head in despair. “Is that even physically possible?”

“Jonah has done it,” Jonathan answers, easing off on the intensity.

Barnabas’ mouth goes dry at the thought of the visual those words conjure: Jonah, his cunt swollen and pink and sopping wet, damp curls shining, kneeling over a glass to catch every last drop of arousal. Fingers sunk into him as they are sunk into Barnabas now, massaging his most tender, intimate places. Jonah with his voice raw from vocalizing his exquisite torment; tears on his cheeks, drool on his chin. Probably tied down, too, for practicality’s sake—he doesn’t tend to beg so much as he commands, and a firebrand like him would likely not allow himself to be tortured so without a bit of struggle.

All that Barnabas can say to that is simply, “Into a glass?”

Barnabas feels Jonathan’s laughter in the base of his spine. “No, no, but enough to fill one, most certainly.”

“Yes, I have been known to come voluminously,” Jonah chortles, folding his trousers and draping them over the changing screen with his other clothes. The over-shirt soon joins them. “Would you like to attempt making me do that, Barnabas?”

Barnabas swallows, licking his lips in anticipation of their service possibly being called upon. “I would.”

“Ah.” Grinning, Jonah locks eyes with Barnabas as he spends time unlacing his short stays. With his shoulders back and chest on display, Barnabas thinks about how much he enjoys Jonah’s figure both in and out of shapewear—bared under his hands, Jonah’s softness is a fine thing, but so too is the firm shape he cuts in a well-tailored waistcoat and jacket. To be just a touch horrible when he sees Barnabas watching, he leans forward to display the cleavage revealed as he loosens the lacing, only straightening back up again when he needs to lift the stays off. “Oh, dear. I know how much you love to please, but wouldn’t it be more fun for you to earn it?”

It is beyond Barnabas to tear his gaze away from Jonah as he strips off the last of his clothing. He is red-haloed and luminous under the afternoon sunlight, but Barnabas focuses on the golden glitter of his remaining adornments: two barbells, piercing through his nipples; his earrings, swinging with every slight movement; his spectacles, a signifier of his bookishness, of his haughty cleverness. “I did promise to behave,” Barnabas quietly reminds him.

“That you did.” And Jonah, sweet Jonah, graces him with a kind hand carding through his hair and a cruel one raising the tumbler to touch his cock. “But promises are only words. I need to see the proof for myself.”

And so, with that, Barnabas consigns himself to whatever challenges his owners have in store for him.

But God, it isn’t easy. They may have emphasized their patience, but after what feels like hours pass speared on Jonathan’s fingers, Barnabas is having a frustrating time keeping it together. His toes curl with pleasant heat, and he tries to approach when teased and flee when overwhelmed. His dripping cock aches. His knees chafe on the sheets.

Jonathan is careful with him, but Jonah is cruel. He sits, pillowing Barnabas’ cheek on his thigh, petting Barnabas’ hair and telling him how cute he looks, all subservient and helpless—which would be bearable, but then Jonah’s praise takes on a humiliating bent as he starts describing fantasies to him. Some of them play off of what he’s shared with Jonah before in the cheery afterglow when most anything seems possible to turn into an arousing idea, but many more of them are purest filth and Barnabas finds himself both mystified by the depths of Jonah’s creative depravity and mortified that he agrees with Jonah whenever he insinuates that Barnabas would enjoy all manner of depraved acts.

Jonah would like to see Barnabas in stays and skirts, he says. He says he would like to take Barnabas out for a walk in the park as a lovely lady on his arm and fuck her on his fingers in some secluded corner of the gardens. He speaks of the sound of distant hooves on cobblestone and the close insect hum and the overwhelming fragrance of the flowers, cloying and intoxicating, each in equal measure.

Jonah—and Jonathan too, for that matter—would like to see Barnabas as their slave, restrained to the bedpost by chain and manacle. Without identity or name, the whole of his existence reduced to a hard cock and a bed-warming body. Jonathan suggests that the only time Barnabas would be allowed clothing is to transport him to parties where he is to be the plaything of all guests in attendance. Jonah smiles his approval. Barnabas groans it.

“Why don’t you take over for me, Jonah? Since you seem so keen on ruining Barnabas with your words,” Jonathan says.

“I would love to.” Jonah oils his fingers and kneels beside Barnabas, since he has been entertained by the play of expressions across his face during the storytelling and does not wish to sacrifice the view. While Jonathan attends to the concrete matters of fetching water and ensuring that Barnabas drinks some, Jonah gets a feel for fucking him, for what best makes him shudder and whine.

“Are you having fun, love?” He asks, and watches Barnabas nod. “Would you like to hear more?” The nodding does not stop. Jonah has a sip from the glass Jonathan offers him, wets his lips, and returns to spinning fantasies.

“Picture a graveyard, Barnabas. An ancient one, choked with weeds. You are scarcely able to read the headstones, covered with moss as they are. It is cold, and the fog is heavy on the air and in your lungs, making every shape indistinct. That could be a tree trunk in your view—or it could be a person, standing. Do you have that?”

Barnabas’ cheek is resting on the mattress and his brow is furrowed, but still he makes a soft sound of assent.

“Good,” Jonah says, and checks to make sure that the half-filled tumbler is still in a proper position under his cock—which it is. Some fluid has dripped on the tray instead, but that is likely Barnabas’ fault for shifting around, which can hardly be helped.

“You’ve brought flowers, today. The graveyard is too old for you to have met anyone resting there, but you are going to visit someone—a playwright, perhaps? A poet? You heard about the grave, and you find tragic the thought that nobody has likely visited it in years. And so you, ever the romantic, brought flowers.”

Barnabas scowls on principle, though he knows that Jonah’s right in saying so. It does seem like the sort of thing that he would do—and even if it weren’t, Jonah’s storytelling voice has such a way of enrapturing him that to doubt the plausibility of the tale would be unthinkable, at least while it’s being told. Barnabas has teased him plenty for his ghost stories before, but only in the aftermath of hearing them. It’s rude to interrupt, and he especially does not wish to draw Jonah’s ire when he is the current authority over Barnabas’ pleasure.

“You find the grave and cross. With your kerchief, you brush away leaves and seeds from the cross and dirt from the headstone. You kneel. You set down the bundle of flowers. And you pray.”

To immerse himself further in the story—though he is not quite sure what Jonah is getting at—Barnabas props himself up on his elbows and presses his palms together in mock-prayer. Jonah, seeming to approve, graces him with soothing pets over his upper back, skimming over the dip between his shoulder blades.

“The ground is soft, you notice. It is comfortable to kneel. The earth seems as though it wants you there, damp and welcoming. You want to smell the scent of the flowers you brought and how they combine with the grass and the dirt and you bend over, just as you are doing now.”

Jonah pauses in the story to say something to Jonathan in whispered German—Barnabas can recognize the language, but he is much too addle-brained to even begin to decipher it. Whatever it was, Jonathan joins them on the bed, kneeling at Barnabas’ other side.

“You think about burial. You think about how, someday, you will be the grass and the dirt and the flowers, and you find a certain comfort in that. A strange beauty. Poetic, one might say. Or dramatic. You shake your head to banish the flight of fancy that you’ve been lost in, and you realize that you’ve been a fool, kneeling here in the dirt—your trousers and your coat are going to be caked with dirt, and you can’t have that.”

Jonah’s hand slides up to scratch at the hair on the nape of Barnabas’ neck. “You go to straighten up, but you find that you cannot.” And with those words, Jonah’s grip tightens around the back of his neck, over the collar, shoving Barnabas’ face down into the sheets. He cries out in shock, but he does not attempt to struggle. Jonah continues to describe the scene with all the passion of a poet, possessed. “There is something wrapped around the back of your neck—a root, perhaps? You try to reach up to touch it, to tear it off, but your praying hands have been bound together with stem and vine. You try to push off against the earth with your elbows and you start to sink—surely the ground wasn’t always this muddy. And so you try with your legs instead, hoping to have more luck, but the ground beneath you is too soft here too—and you feel something wrapped around your ankles, wrenching your legs apart.”

At that, Jonathan grabs him and does precisely that. He maintains his grip and leans his weight on Barnabas’ ankles despite the attempts to move and kick, keeping him pinned as securely in place as he does to any of his suffering patients. In fact, all that Barnabas’ fighting accomplishes is his legs being spread out wider, and his thighs tremble from the exertion of having to hold himself up. To pacify him, Jonah tries to overwhelm his senses by vigorously fucking him on his fingers, until his shrieks settle into resigned and panting stillness.

“There you are, Barny. We’ve got you,” Jonah reassures him with a kiss pressed to his flank. “Are you fine to continue?”

Through gritted teeth, Barnabas chokes out a, “Yes.”

Jonah, seemingly not entirely convinced, tries to get a look at Barnabas’ face to confirm. “Are you?”

Barnabas, upon noticing that he is being closely watched, smooths out the strain on his face so that he may properly convey his assent. “Yes, Jonah. Tell your story.”

Jonah temporarily releases his grip on the back of Barnabas’ neck to offer comfort by scratching behind one of Barnabas’ ears. “Very well, then. You are bound in the graveyard by the soil and plants that want you—and do you remember how I said it was foggy out? The fog settles on you, like something heavy, something solid, touching you like a physical thing. It caresses your cheek, the inside of your thighs. You shudder, trying to arch away, but the roots hold you fast. The touch trails up the inside of your thigh and settles over your groin—you’re still wearing your trousers, naturally, but it feels as though there is an ice-cold hand cupping you directly. Your thoughts turn to ghosts, and you wonder that if you looked back over your shoulder you might see a spectral face in the fog—but you cannot, so you’ll just have to continue wondering, won’t you.” Playfully, Jonah strokes a fingertip along the shell of Barnabas’ ear, and his grin broadens at the unnerved shiver it draws from him.

“Whatever it is, it does not bother to pull your trousers down as it begins to touch your entrance, stroking over the rim. It relaxes you, and between that and the cool touch on your cock, you do not notice the climbing roots growing up your thighs. You do not notice, in fact, until you feel the tearing of fabric as the roots snake their way in, splitting the seams.”

Barnabas, by now, is back to being very thoroughly aroused, rocking back onto Jonah’s fingers, gasping softly into the sheets. His cock bobs with his motions, little droplets of precome falling onto the serving tray.

Jonah chuckles at the spectacle Barnabas is making of himself. “What a picture you make. Our little harlot.” He shares a look with Jonathan and sees that he too is of the same mind in his amusement. “But I don’t think it’s entirely fair that only I get to work you into a frenzy. What do you think, Jonathan?”

“I am inclined to agree,” Jonathan admits. “I went through all this trouble of putting my cock on, and I’m not even using it.”

“A pity. Although the real question is: will Barnabas be able to behave himself? We did give him that challenge, after all.”

Softly, demurely, Barnabas speaks up. “Please... I can try. I will try.”

Jonathan gets up from the bed, squatting down to put himself on the level of meeting Barnabas’ eye. “Do you promise not to come?”

Barnabas huffs out a pitiable sort of laugh. “I promise to try my best not to.”

A fond smile, a kiss on Barnabas’ cheek. “All right.” With that, Jonathan makes the necessary preparations of oiling his wooden length, rolling his eyes at the way Jonah watches him with a fierce hunger as he touches himself. Then back on the bed and into Barnabas once Jonah withdraws: slow and gradual even in spite of Barnabas’ body being open and accepting of it.

Barnabas is a vision, taking Jonathan’s cock: all shivers and tight muscle and curling toes. When Jonah wraps a hand around his length, milking it for a couple of strokes into the whiskey glass, Barnabas all but screams.

“Why, if I took you into my mouth, you may just release on the spot,” Jonah taunts, delighting in Barnabas’ broken cry. But he does stop, for the sake of giving the man a fighting chance.

Gripping onto Barnabas’ hips and enjoying the plush, luxurious give of them, Jonathan fucks into him with measured patience. Wryly, he tells Jonah, “I’ve half a mind to just let him have it.”

“Jonathan. That’s not very sportsmanlike. Be kind to the poor man.” Jonah gives Jonathan’s arse a playful squeeze before settling over the curve of it, pressing forward in time with the thrusts, as if encouraging him along. “Besides, I do know how much you love ruining him when he’s already been ruined. After he’s been drained of spend, there are still tears to be given aplenty, yes?”

“Good God, Jonah.” Those words are fit to drive the air straight out of Jonathan’s lungs. He is terribly, horribly correct—whether Jonathan is driving Barnabas half-mad on his cock or making Jonah weep with well-applied force, he has always had a weakness for making his lovers cry. It’s an intellectual sort of enjoyment for Jonathan, and it doesn’t present the same issues as regular types of interaction, given how infrequently he likes to be touched himself. Making his lovers suffer—with their approval, naturally—is proof of his power, well-fought, hard-earned.

“Weren’t you going to continue your storytelling?”

“Hm? Oh, I can.” Mischief blooms on Jonah’s face. “Where were we...?”

“Getting molested by a ghost, was it? And something about roots,” Jonathan prompts.

“Right, that was it.” Jonah clears his throat and closes his eyes to better imagine the scene he was conjuring. “The roots are snaking their way in through the seam of your trousers and you feel them caressing your most sensitive places. One wraps around the base of you—” and Jonah does this, wrapping his hand around Barnabas’ cock and balls both, marvelling at how tightly they are stretched, “—keeping you from even thinking about releasing. Another begins to push into your arse, and though you are concerned about its thin sharpness, you are also thankful that it is wet, somehow. Dew? Nectar? More of the fog-sorcery? It doesn’t matter. But it tastes like the way the earth smells after a rain, and you know this because the ground reaches up for your mouth too, slipping in while it is open from your gasping.” Jonah offers him a couple of fingers to suck, and Barnabas enthusiastically obliges him. He is filthy with it, all tongue and damp moaning. “It settles over your molars, hooking in, pulling your jaw down to the ground. The flowers you left brush against your cheek. You think that you may just become them sooner than you thought.”

Now that Barnabas seems to have adjusted to the treatment, Jonathan picks up the pace of ramming into him. He knows, from long experience, exactly how he needs to angle his hips to get Barnabas’ body responding in earnest—which he does, by sputtering and half-choking on Jonah’s fingers. Jonah elects to withdraw them, instead grabbing a handful of Barnabas’ hair so that he may take in the most of Barnabas’ tortured expressions.

“Ah— Jonah, Jonathan, please—”

“Please what, pet?” Jonah asks.

“Let me finish, please, I-I can’t—”

“Has he earned it, do you think?” Jonah squeezes Barnabas’ balls even tighter, pointedly ignoring his cry of despair.

Jonathan does not even consider pausing while fucking him. “Mm. Make sure he comes into the glass.”

Finding this to be agreeable, Jonah holds the glass and angles Barnabas’ cock towards it, jerking him off as much to keep the angle steady as it is a genuine attempt to make him come. Barnabas is weeping now, tears of relief at being granted permission to finish after being so long denied it—he wants so badly to thrash about, to lose himself in wild abandon, but he forces his hips to remain as still as they possibly can, tensing up whenever Jonathan bottoms out inside of him. It is a wonder to him how he was able to speak at all a minute ago, because now he’s been reduced to animal groans and desperate, pained whimpers. The fire that has been sitting inside his nerves, in his legs and in his belly, pours out of him in spurts, and all his want for movement is channelled into his fist, pounding against the mattress.

The tray and glass are set down on the dresser, and once they are gone, Barnabas nearly collapses under his own weight. Instead, Jonathan guides him down easy to straddle his kneeling lap and tries to settle some of Barnabas’ trembling by petting over his lower back. He needs closeness now, Jonathan knows: and though the unyielding cock in his arse may be less pleasant a sensation than it was, he doesn’t want the vulnerable Barnabas to feel abandoned by its absence. Jonah pets him too, scratching his hair, palm dancing over his shoulder blades. When it seems as though Barnabas’ breathing has levelled out, Jonah puts the tray on the bed before him, and Barnabas doesn’t need to be told to lick it clean. He shudders at the taste of himself, undercut by the bite of silver, and his tongue runs over every square inch of the platter before he even thinks to look up at Jonah, a noise of inquiry in his throat.

“Good boy,” Jonah tells him, wearing an open look of fondness.

Barnabas closes his eyes, satisfied. When he feels a pointed tap on his hip, he assumes that Jonathan means to move, and so he lifts off from his lap, wincing as the cock slides out of him. Jonathan gets up and fiddles with the harness, stripping down to his drawers when he removes it, watching Barnabas curl up on his side, being petted by Jonah all the while.

Jonathan snaps his fingers, snatching up Barnabas’ attention, and he opens his eyes to see Jonathan appraising the fluid in the tumbler. It is very nearly full of cloudy white, and Barnabas takes a moment to marvel at the fact that all of that came from him. But then Jonathan simply must be horrible to him by making him watch as he dips a finger in, examines the viscosity as it drips back down, and then puts it into his mouth. Barnabas isn’t ashamed to whine—he can’t help it, not when his flagging erection is making an honest attempt to awaken again.

Jonah approves as well, if his chuckle is anything to go by. “Don’t be selfish, Doctor, pass it over.”

Which he does, and Barnabas cannot possibly tear his eyes away from Jonah as he takes a sip in precisely the same manner as he would any other cordial. That is a sight he will be carrying with him for months, at the very least. It’s torture, plain and simple, and Jonah is well-aware of that fact—Barnabas would beg, but in the haze of release and the stupefying nature of the sight before him, he finds himself quite unable to find the words.

“Oh?” Jonah teases, the rim of the glass still resting near his bottom lip. “Want a taste, do you?”

Somehow, Barnabas manages to both nod and sit up on the bed. Language may be a bit of a jumble right now, but he can handle the physical when it is asked of him. He opens his mouth when instructed, and allows Jonah to pour his own emissions over his ready tongue. Barnabas feels as though he’s been punched in the gut with the intensity of the taste, bracing and medicine-bitter. Before Jonah, before Jonathan, he has always had a shameful appetite for his own come: all the way back to the first time he’d pleasured himself and licked it off his hand, just to see. He’d found it startling, invigorating—the perfect capstone on a pleasant time.

But this—the volume is immense, and Barnabas is caught up in an involuntary, full-body shudder. He remembers to swallow only when his throat is massaged, his collar catching on his Adam’s apple when it is shifted up. Whoever is doing it—Jonathan, probably—it grounds him just enough to drink, swallow after swallow, until he is left huffing breaths into the glass as the last little trail slides down the side.

“There you are, love. Let’s lay you down.” Jonathan lets go of Barnabas’ throat, makes sure to set the collar right, and helps to guide Barnabas down onto a pillow. Over the course of this he cannot help but notice the man’s cock resting firm against his thigh—and he scoffs as he climbs into bed to lay against Barnabas’ back. Jonah comes to join them too, on Barnabas’ other side so that he may be surrounded with as much affection as they are willing to give.

Jonathan takes Barnabas’ cock into his patient, tender hand. Jonah finds a use for Barnabas’ idle lips on his chest, kissing and suckling and licking at his leisure. There is no need to rush.

When Jonathan has had his fill of kissing Barnabas on the back and shoulder, he catches Jonah’s eye and engages him in quiet conversation. “Those were some... innovative ideas you were coming up with. Describing the fantasies, I mean.”

Jonah sighs out a soft moan before speaking. “I cannot take credit for all of them, I must admit—the whole scene with the graveyard and the plants, I borrowed from one of the accounts at the institute.”

“You had someone write you about being sodomized by roots?” That cannot possibly be true, Jonathan thinks.

Jonah’s bright laughter is a reassurance, and so too is the friendly pat he gives to the arm that’s jerking Barnabas off. “No, no—bound by roots, not sodomized. I simply embellished it.”

Jonathan responds with a smile in kind. “You really ought to make a living of writing fiction.”

“What, and invite persecution for obscenity? No, thank you. I would much prefer to keep to spinning tales for you—this one seemed to appreciate it.” Jonah brushes the hair from Barnabas’ eyes to look down at him, seeing the corner of his mouth twitch into a grin before he returns to playing with the bar through Jonah’s nipple, his tongue piercing clinking against it every so often.

Jonathan and Jonah continue to chat over Barnabas as if he were not there at all—Barnabas has admitted before to finding this relieving, not being expected to participate in conversation, where he is free to simply listen to and enjoy the voices of his friends. He pays attention to the content, sure, seeing as how they are discussing whether or not they are interested in making some of those earlier fantasies a reality and how best to go about doing so, and naturally he also pays attention to how he’s being touched: the hand around his cock, the skin under his lips.

All of this is an indulgence, not an urgency: they do have the whole evening ahead of them, and beyond that, the night.