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Warnings: some homophobic slurs
Word Count: 2,800 on the MONEY



“I’m going to take you out tomorrow night, so make sure you wear something nice.”

Holding the phone between his shoulder and his cheek, Elijah thumbed through his closet with a dubious look on his face. “How nice? Like, fancy?”

“A club, so something . . . stylish.”

“Stylish?” Elijah rescued the phone with his hand. “Dude, have you seen my wardrobe? I’ve pretty much got geek-chic written all over me.”

“Well, you’ve got a pair of tight jeans in there. I know you do because I’ve seen you in them.”

Still frowning, Elijah pulled out the aforementioned jeans. “And what should I wear with them? My sweatervest?”

“Elijah if you don’t want to go, then just say it.” Orlando’s voice sounded irritated. He didn’t get mad often, so Elijah knew he was pushing his buttons.

“It’s not that. It’s just . . . I don’t know what to wear. I’ve never been to one of these clubs before.”

“You mean to tell me you’ve been living in Los Angeles for the past two years, and you’ve never been to a club?”

“Well, I’ve gone to the bar.”

“A bar is not a club.” Elijah could practically see the look of excitement on Orlando’s face. He pulled out a potential shirt—a black button-up with silver buttons. He put it back. Too gay. “Just wait until you see the men,” Orlando sighed.

“Are you taking me out or to find a new boyfriend?” The sarcasm in his voice was thick, but he still wanted to get his point across.

“Love, trust me. Do you know what a go-go dancer is?”

“Those chicks from the sixties with the knee-high boots who danced for money?”

“A go-go boy is like that, only he’s dance in all his half-naked glory for free. Now tell me that doesn’t excite you.”

Truthfully, it did sound hot, but the whole idea still made Elijah uncomfortable. And he had no idea what shirt to wear. He tried for a humorous approach instead. “Orlando, I had no idea you had voyeuristic tendencies.”

“Baby, you’ve only had a taste of my tendencies.”

That statement alone made Elijah’s cock jump to attention. “I could say something so inappropriate right now.”

“Say it.”

“No, forget it.” Elijah adjusted himself. At least Orlando couldn’t see that.

“Just wear something that would look good at a club.”

“What are you wearing?”

“That, my love, is a surprise.” He chuckled. “Besides, I didn’t think you were in to phone sex.”

To that, Elijah had absolutely no response. Orlando’s rich laugh echoed down the line again. “Pick out an outfit, get some sleep, and I’ll see you tomorrow.”

“Goodnight,” Elijah sighed and ended the call. Going to club would be an adventure, for sure.

*

Orlando showed up at exactly eleven p.m. like he promised. One thing Elijah could count on was Orlando’s punctuality. The man was like fucking clockwork.

When Elijah opened the door, his breath caught. If he thought Orlando looked good the night of their first date, he severely underestimated his boyfriend’s ability to dress up. Orlando practically oozed sex in dark jeans that hugged every muscle in his legs and a tight green t-shirt made Elijah want to run his hands all over Orlando’s chest. A black jacket completed the look. Elijah sighed inwardly. If only Orlando’s bike wasn’t totaled.

“What?” Orlando asked, glancing down at himself.

“You look fucking amazing,” Elijah said, launching himself at Orlando for a kiss. When they parted, Orlando was all a-grin.

“If I knew my outfit would get this kind of reaction out of you, I would have dressed like this a long time ago.”

Elijah wrapped his hand around the back of Orlando’s neck and pulled him down for another kiss. “God, you smell good,” he sighed, rubbing his face against the side of Orlando’s throat.

“You keep doing that and we’re not going to get out of here,” Orlando said patiently, running his hands up and down Elijah’s sides. The rough texture of Orlando’s cast felt weird through the cotton of Elijah’s shirt. He pulled himself away from the other man. “You ready?” Orlando asked, wiping his mouth on the back of his sleeve.

“Are you sure I’m dressed okay?” Elijah looked down at himself again. He was wearing the tight jeans Orlando suggested, and a black and white striped long-sleeve t-shirt.

“You still look like a dork.” Elijah wilted. “But it’s you. Baby, it’s how you look. I love it. I love you, you’re adorable.”

Elijah was sure Orlando missed the words as they slipped out of his mouth, so he didn’t say anything. He allowed Orlando to take him by the hand and lead him to the car. The bike would have been more exciting, of course, but it was out of commission.

They parked in a garage downtown and headed off along the busy Los Angeles street. Most of the clubs were already packed and the lines stretched around many corners. As much as he wanted to do this for Orlando, Elijah did not fancy spending his evening waiting in line.

Orlando marched up to the door of a club whose line was predominantly male. A gay club, of course. The bouncer seemed to recognize Orlando because he hugged him and clapped him on the back.

“Busy night?” Orlando asked, nodding to the line.

“Always,” the man replied. “Go on in, Orli.”

Orlando stepped past the rope. Elijah made to follow, but the bouncer stopped him. “Not you.”

Orlando turned around. “He’s with me.”

“Well, he’s not getting in.”

“Mate, he’s my boyfriend,” Orlando said, his tone growing agitated.

“I don’t care if he’s the fuckin’ messiah. He’s not getting in. He can wait at the back of the line like everyone else.”

Elijah stared at Orlando helplessly. “It’s okay. I’ll just meet you inside.”

“Like hell you will.” Orlando stepped out of the doorway and ducked back under the rope. “Come on, Elijah,” he said, wrapping his arm around the shorter man’s waist. “You don’t want to see a rubbish club like that, anyway.”

Behind them, the bouncer shook his head and unclipped the rope to allow to guys inside.

“That club is a sodding joke, anyway. Nothing but wankers and cunts there.”

Elijah nodded but remained silent. Personally he could care less if some bouncer thought he looked too “uncool” to get into his club, but he secretly loved when Orlando go angry and his English side came out.

“So are we headed back home, then?” Elijah asked as they got into the car. A small sliver of hope blossomed in his chest.

“Of course not,” Orlando replied, flashing Elijah a grin that sent heat through his body.

Elijah watched with trepidation as they drove past club after club. He really would have preferred to just go home, but didn’t have the heart to say that to Orlando. They pulled into a parking lot. Elijah looked at Orlando, a confused expression on his face.

“Are we just stopping here?”

“Nope,” Orlando replied. “It’s not a club, but like hell they’re going to deny you entrance.”

Elijah got out and followed Orlando into the bar where he worked. It was just as busy as any of the clubs, typical for a Saturday night. Orlando made his way to the bar, keeping ahold of Elijah’s hand so he didn’t lose him.

Billy looked up at the newcomers and a smile split across his face. “What’s going on tonight? None of you can find a better place to hang out?”

Orlando glanced around the bar. “Who else is here/”

“Dom,” Billy said, pointing to a table where Dom was entertaining three or four women.

Turning back to Billy, Orlando shook his head. “I’ve no idea what they see in him. Can I get a vodka cranberry and a bottle of Budweiser?”

“Sure,” Billy said, reaching for the bottles.

Blake passed Billy and looked up at Orlando. “Hey,” she said, her dark eyes assessing Elijah.

“Hey yourself,” Orlando replied grinning. “This is my boyfriend, Elijah,” he said, pulling him closer to the bar.

“Nice to meet you,” Elijah said, holding out his hand.

“Blake,” the girl supplied, shaking his hand.

“Blake is our resident bitch,” Billy said, setting Orlando and Elijah’s drinks on the bar, “but we love her, anyway.”

“Fuck you, too, Billy,” Blake said with a smile.

“See what I mean?”

Blake rolled her eyes and walked away.

Orlando paid for their drinks and walked over to Dom’s table with his beer in the hand without a cast.

“Orli!” the other man crowed. He nodded at Elijah. “Orli’s boyfriend.”

“Hi,” Elijah said, giving a small wave.

“Ladies, I’d like you to meet Orlando, one of my coworkers, and his boyfriend, Elijah. They’re gay, so do get any ideas.”

“The word ‘boyfriend’ kind of gave it away,” one of the girls said.

“Are you sure you’re gay?” another asked, leaning over so that her ample cleavage was practically falling into Orlando’s lap.

“Sorry, love,” Orlando said. “Your breasts are the equivalent of the home shopping network. They just don’t do anything for me.”

The girl made a face and cuddled closer to Dom. Winking at Orlando, Dom reach around and pinched the girl’s bum. “So what brings you guys here tonight?”

“Ever heard of Eros?”

“That gay club downtown? Yeah, why?” Dom’s eyes slid to Elijah. “Let me guess: boyfriend couldn’t get in.”

Elijah gave an exasperated sigh. “Is it that obvious?”

“Well, you don’t exactly scream ‘club kid.’”

Elijah rolled his eyes. He took a sip of his drink.

“Well, what are you doing here?” Orlando asked.

Dom shrugged one shoulder, leaning back in his chair. “I don’t need to pay covers to pick up women.”

“Neither do I,” Orlando shot back, smiling as he took a sip from his beer bottle. “I just figured since we were all ready to go out, we’d just come here.”

“Works for me,” Elijah said, making a face. “I’m not really one for clubs, anyway.”

“What, you don’t dance?” Orlando asked, giving him a sideways glance. Orlando set his bottle on the table in front of Dom. He took Elijah by the hand. Elijah hurriedly set down his own drink as Orlando dragged him back out into the crush of people in the middle of the bar.

The music Billy played wasn’t club-thumping bass, but it was still good music for dancing. Orlando splayed a hand on Elijah’s back and pulled him close. Elijah wrapped his arms around Orlando’s neck and smiled up at him.

“I know this isn’t a club, but I’m having fun.”

“So am I. It’s always enjoyable when I’m with you.” Orlando leaned down and pressed a kiss to Elijah’s lips. They stayed there like that, foreheads pressed against one another, just swaying gently to the music.

“I didn’t know this was a fuckin’ queer bar,” a voice said behind them.

Orlando and Elijah released one another. Elijah could practically see the blood boiling under Orlando’s skin. They stared at the two men behind them. “You got a problem, mate?” Orlando asked, his dark eyes narrowing.

“Yeah, I think I do, mate,” the first guy said, emphasizing the last word in an irritating parody of Orlando’s accent.

“Well, if you’ve got something to say, why don’t you say it to my face?”

Sensing the impending escalation of the conversation, Elijah tugged insistently on the sleeve of Orlando’s jacket. “Orlando, just let it go. They’re not worth it.”

“I said I didn’t think this was a fag bar,” the guy hissed into Orlando’s face. The man glanced at Elijah. “Can’t even fight your own battles, can you? You need your fag-bitch to tell you when to back down.”

Elijah’s own back stiffened at the comment, but Orlando ignored the barb. “No,” he said, taking a step into the man’s personal space. “This is between you and me. If you’re so worried about being in a fag bar, then maybe you should leave.”

“Now he’s telling me to leave,” the man shared a look with his buddy. When he turned back to Orlando, he pushed him in the chest with both hands. “Make me.”

In seconds, Orlando and the man were tussling. Two bouncers came out of nowhere. Billy was suddenly next to Elijah, who was anxiously debating how to step between the two men.

“What the hell happened?” Billy asked as the bouncers hauled Orlando and the other man apart.

“Some guy was calling us fags,” Elijah sighed, but his eyes were on Orlando. The bouncer walked him over to them while the other escorted the homophobe out the door.

“I’m sorry, Billy, but that guy was a total asshole,” Orlando said, shaking his head.

“You’re bleeding.” Elijah reaching out for Orlando, but his boyfriend jerked away.

“I’m fine,” Orlando said, wiping at the blood in the corner of his mouth.

Billy’s lips were set in a firm line. The tension and the emotion in the bar was still high. “Don’t let it happen again. I can’t have fights in my bar.” His green eyes flicked back and forth between Orlando and Elijah. “I think you two should go.”

Elijah nodded, glancing tentatively at Orlando.

“Yeah,” Orlando said. Without looking at either of them, he headed for the door. Elijah gave Billy an apologetic look and headed after Orlando. He found him pacing along the sidewalk in front of the bar. The blood had dried on his mouth, and he would definitely have a fat lip. When he saw Elijah, he just started walking towards the car.

Elijah had to jog to catch up with him. He pulled his cigarettes out and lit one, blowing out a deep breath.

“Can I have one?” Orlando asked softly.

Elijah gave him an odd look, but handed him the pack, anyway. “I didn’t realize you smoked.”

“Not anymore,” Orlando said, blowing the smoke out of his lungs. “I quit in high school after I started doing yoga. It helped control my anger better.”

Elijah raised an eyebrow, but Orlando just shook his head. Elijah still couldn’t help the heat that spread through his body at the sigh of Orlando angry. Something about the man losing control just made Elijah want to fuck.

“Yours or mine?” Orlando asked as they got into the car.

“Doesn’t matter to me.”

“Mine, then,” Orlando said, turning the ignition. He was still angry when they got back to his apartment, and it only served to fuel Elijah’s passion.

As soon as the door shut, Elijah pressed Orlando against the wall and slid their mouths together. Orlando gave a small ‘oof’ of surprise. “My lip,” he said, tilting his head away and drawing his lip in under his top teeth.

“Sorry,” Elijah said, painting wet kisses down Orlando’s neck. “We don’t have to kiss.”

“Fuck it,” Orlando said, melting against Elijah’s body. He crushed his mouth down against Elijah’s again.

“You are so fucking hot when you’re angry,” Elijah panted when they parted.

“Yeah?” Orlando breathed the word into Elijah’s mouth. He slid his hands down the back of Elijah’s thighs and lifted him up in one fluid motion. Elijah went willingly, wrapping his arms and legs around Orlando’s fit body. With his hands held securely under Elijah’s bottom, he walked them to the bedroom. Channeling passionate anger into passionate sex wasn’t necessarily a bad idea.

Later that night, they lay sated in Orlando’s bed, Elijah on his back with Orlando’s cheek pillowed on his chest. Elijah traced random patterns through the cooling sweat on Orlando’s back.

“Did you hear me earlier?” Orlando asked, his voice a mere rumble against Elijah’s nude skin.

“Hmm?” Elijah asked, tilting his head down to see Orlando more clearly.

Orlando laid his unbroken arm across Elijah’s chest and propped his chin on it. His dark eyes considered Elijah seriously. “When we were leaving your apartment earlier.”

Elijah’s heart began to pound so hard, he was sure Orlando could feel it beneath his face. Maybe Orlando had meant what he said. “I’m not sure,” Elijah answered honestly.

“I said I love you,” Orlando said.

Now Elijah’s heart really began to pound. He almost couldn’t hear Orlando’s words over the blood rushing in his ears. “I love you, too,” he said softly, a small smile curling his lips.

Orlando moved up and over Elijah’s body once again, and Elijah’s thighs spread to accommodate him. They were both to sated to feel excited by the contact, but the closeness felt good, felt right.

“I was really hoping you’d say that,” Orlando confessed, leaning down to claim Elijah’s mouth again.

Elijah wrapped his ankle around one of Orlando’s legs. Maybe he could go again. Confessions of love seemed to have a positive effect on one’s sex drive.

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