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14 November 2005 @ 04:03 pm
Numb3rs Fic: First Thoughts  
Posted to numb3rs_slash


Title: First Thoughts (Sequel to Convergence and Divergence)
Series/Universe: Last Call
Pairing/Characters: Don, Charlie
Rating: NC17
Spoilers: Structural Corruption, Counterfeit Reality
Summary: Don and Charlie wake up in the same bed
Notes/Warnings: Read the disclaimer on my LJ


Charlie always woke slowly, more so when he was warm and relaxed.

His mind, so agile in a conscious state, always came to awareness much slower than his body did.

As he came around, he shifted a little and felt the warm mass next to him shift slightly in response. He pressed his body closer, craving full contact, as his hand slid up warm skin to encounter thick yet downy chest hair.

Chest hair… Don!

His mind registered the implications a split second later. He pulled away and sat up quickly. He paid for the sudden movement as his hangover headache slammed into his head full force.

Suddenly nauseous, he stumbled to the bathroom and waited to see if he'd be sick. After a few deep breaths, he recovered and headed over to the sink for a drink of water for his dry mouth. He hadn't turned on any lights, but the sun filtering through the blinds was enough for him to catch a glimpse of his reflection. He stared at himself for a moment as the events of the previous night came back to him.

He winced at his disheveled appearance as much as the memories flitting through his head. He opened the medicine cabinet and looked for anything Don might have that would be good for a hangover. He swallowed a few pills, then borrowed Don's toothbrush to brush his teeth with.

After another drink of water, he headed back to bed, rubbing his temples as he walked. The light in the bedroom was far dimmer, but Charlie could tell he'd practically torn the covers off the bed when he got up before, so he took a moment to cover Don back up again before he got in.

Charlie watched him sleep for a moment, glad he'd been the first to wake so Don wouldn't find out what he'd done. He lay down on his side, facing away from his brother. A part of him felt guilty about using his brother for comfort, but another part of him felt cold and alone on his side of the bed.

Five minutes later Charlie was asleep.

Five minutes after that he was curled around Don's body again.

+

Don normally woke up to the blaring of his alarm clock, a shock of adrenaline coursing through his system like fuel for the day to come.

Without an alarm he was disoriented, never quite sure if he was really awake or not.

His mind still in the gray areas of consciousness, he decided he was still dreaming. It was a nice dream so he didn't want it to end.

His lover was lying in his arms, asleep. Don's arms were casually wrapped around the warm body beside him and he felt warm… happy… loved…

He'd woken up that way a few times with Terry in their Academy days. She'd rarely let him sleep over, but when she did, she always woke first and slipped into his arms, knowing how much he liked to wake up that way.

Living with Kim had been totally different. She was so active in bed she would never stay still long enough to be held. She thrashed about so much in sleep, they rarely woke up with any covers over them since she'd have kicked them off overnight. A few times, Don woke up after being kicked awake and considered sleeping on the couch, but then she'd apologize the next day and he'd not want to hurt her feelings by making her wake up alone.

This though… This was perfect. Stillness, warmth, a feeling of wholeness that had been lacking in Don's life…

He let out a contented sigh as his hand caressed its way up his lover's back until it slipped to the nape of the neck beneath a mess of curls.

Curls… Charlie!

Don drew his hands away as if they'd been burned. The sudden removal of the warmth of his arms only made Charlie press closer against him, as if to reclaim some of the lost heat.

Don froze when he realized he could feel Charlie's erection against his thigh. Stunned and practically paralyzed, he looked down at Charlie as if to find some answers there.

He looked amazingly peaceful, content and, despite the hangover Don was sure he'd wake up with, rested. Charlie was always so energetic, driving himself hard between school and consulting work, Don rarely saw him when he wasn't in some state of weariness.

It hit Don all at once… Charlie had been upset before they went to sleep, feeling lonely and rejected. Now he looked like all that was forgotten; that he'd found what he'd been missing the night before. Don had been the one to give it to him. Charlie… He'd given Don what he hadn't even realized he'd been looking for. The feelings he'd had when he first awoke had been tremendously healing. He hadn't been aware of the void in his life since he and Kim split until Charlie somehow filled it.

Still not fully awake, and desperate to recapture how he'd felt when he thought he'd been dreaming, he pushed aside the questions in his head and closed his eyes again.

Before sleep could claim him, he wrapped his arms back around Charlie, soaking in the warmth and comfort he found there.

+

Two hours later Don woke alone.

He found a note on his nightstand, folded up on top of his alarm clock, which had been turned off.

"You really do take good care of me. Thanks for always being there. - C"

=
 
 
 
The Writ of Kat: Numb3rs - Charlie - When He Smilessparklinblossom on November 15th, 2005 12:48 am (UTC)
So sweet, so adorable. :)
Emma DeMarais: BlueEyeemmademarais on November 15th, 2005 01:07 am (UTC)
Thanks. More to come... :-)
it only burns when I breathe: don&charlie_brothers_shantalanadevilspikedluv on November 15th, 2005 12:48 am (UTC)
Very nice. I love Don and Charlie each taking comfort from the other.
Emma DeMarais: BlueEyeemmademarais on November 15th, 2005 01:11 am (UTC)
Thanks. I do too. I think going down this path was easier for me once I made the connection between them based on need instead of mere lust. They both have voids in their lives that no one is filling. Even though they wouldn't have thought to turn to each other before, now that it's happened, the door is open...

Thanks,

Emma DeMarais
cat_willow (Jan)cat_willow on November 15th, 2005 06:33 am (UTC)
I'm really loving this series. You write beautifully.
Emma DeMarais: BlueEyeemmademarais on November 15th, 2005 07:11 am (UTC)
Thank you. I hadn't planned on a series but evidently I have one on my hands now! I'm getting close to calling this a full universe, even.

So far the initial Last Call fic has turned into the following series:

Safety in Numb3rs (Prequel)
Last Call
Convergence and Divergence (Sequel)
First Thoughts (Sequel)
Magnet and Steel (Sequel)
Turnabout (Sequel)

I have no idea if it will stop there or not but considering I just finished a first draft of SiN (quite the apropos abbreviation in this cest-happy fandom!) and I've started both M&S and Turnabout I'd say this thing officially has a life of it's own!

Either that or my muse has had too much chocolate. ;-)

Thanks,

Emma DeMarais
T.: carmine smokingmonkeyfun1 on November 15th, 2005 07:23 am (UTC)
More chocolate for the muse
I'm sending more sinful chocolate for your muse Emma. I adore your writing. I find it so very touching on a bone-deep level that you are making this about need and not just lust. It makes it less repugnant. I hate to use that word as I am in love with Don/Charlie. I find I have those cartoon people sitting on my shoulders...one is an angel the other a devil... you can guess who I listen to in this case? Heh.
At any rate, whatever it takes to keep your muse happy and well fed is what any self serving Numb3rs fic reader will do for you.
T
Emma DeMarais: BlueEyeemmademarais on November 15th, 2005 08:27 am (UTC)
Re: More chocolate for the muse
Ah, thank you so much.
/blushes a little/ /is touched/ /gratefully accepts more chocolate and passes it on to her greedy muse/

I've only just dipped my toes into the cest-pool ;-) but it looks like the handbasket just passed the sign that says 'Special Hell - This Way!' (Once I write the sequel Turnabout it'll be official, but for now I'm just headed down that path.) I understand the dichotomy at the heart of D/C and that's part of what my site is about - exploring the darker sides that tempt us.

I'm editing the prequel Safety in Numb3rs (since I am sadly beta-less) at the moment and hope to have it up later today. It's not cesty at all, but it does prove that the chocolate *really* fueled my muse's fire. :-)

Thanks,

Emma DeMarais
sydiansydian on November 15th, 2005 12:46 pm (UTC)
This is such a lovely series! I really like how they are slowly drifting toward each other while they realize how they complement each other. Great character development there!
Emma DeMarais: BlueEyeemmademarais on November 15th, 2005 12:53 pm (UTC)
Thank you. I just posted the prequel Safety in Numb3rs which is chronologically the first in the series, even though I published it after Last Call, Convergence and Divergence and First Thoughts.

Right now I don't have any plans to continue the series once I've finished writing Magnet and Steel and Turnabout, but then I never planned on Last Call being a series in the first place, so I may not know for some time if it's truly over or not!

Thanks,

Emma DeMarais
sydiansydian on November 16th, 2005 02:04 pm (UTC)
Hee, it's fun how some stories develop a life of their own and turn into a series faster than you can say stand-alone. ;) Anyway, I'm very happy to hear there'll be more to read!
Emma DeMarais: BlueEyeemmademarais on November 17th, 2005 07:08 am (UTC)
Thank you. I just finished the first draft of Magnet and Steel and am faced with the very *not* fun task of self-betaing it. /sighs/

The series is growing yet again! It was supposed to be that Magnet and Steel and then Turnabout were it, but now there's a new sequel before Turnabout I'm calling Being There. M&S was getting super long and it really needed to end at a good spot, so I took the original ending idea and will write it as Being There.

Okay, that's just my lame excuse. The truth is I couldn't write the cest just yet, so I postponed it. So the handbasket hasn't fully descended to that special hell yet. So sue me. ;-)

Thanks,

Emma DeMarais
sydian: ewan - deep in thought {me}sydian on November 17th, 2005 08:39 am (UTC)
Don't worry, no suing from this corner. ;)

As for a beta reader, did you try asking at numb3rs_slash? There are so many talented writers there, I'd be surprised if none offered to help. I'd offer myself, but English isn't my first language and I'd probably end up making things worse. Besides, from what I remember, your stories aren't exactly in dire need of editing. I like them just fine the way they are!

Yeah, the cest is tricky to write, isn't it? I was pondering to try my hand at it but so far, Don and Charlie have refused to cooperate. But I'm sure we'll both make to that special hell in the end. ;)
Emma DeMarais: BlueEyeemmademarais on November 17th, 2005 09:07 am (UTC)
As for a beta reader, did you try asking at numb3rs_slash? There are so many talented writers there, I'd be surprised if none offered to help.

Well, I figured I'd need to post in a comm at least a few times before I asked there. I'm new to this fandom, so I assumed I wouldn't get any offers until I had enough stuff out there to establish some reasonable credentials as a fic author.

I'd offer myself, but English isn't my first language

It isn't? Well I'm impressed then. Your English is very good indeed! You should remember that not all betaing is about typos and grammar. Content betaing is also really important and you really don't need great language skills for that! Then again, I've never offered to beta for anyone who writes in French, so take what I say with a grain of salt. ;-)

Besides, from what I remember, your stories aren't exactly in dire need of editing. I like them just fine the way they are!

Well thank you. I do try very hard to edit them carefully. That, actually, is my problem. Since I don't have fresh eyes, it's a lot of painful work to step my way through my fic to edit it. I not only despise the process, it robs me of valuable *writing* time.

Yeah, the cest is tricky to write, isn't it?

OMG! Yes! I had no idea! Here I thought it'd just be slash with a dash of wrong, but it's much harder, much more complex, and much more resistant to my muse. ;-)

But I'm sure we'll both make to that special hell in the end.

Yes, I can see the big arch with the neon sign over it just ahead... The handbasket is slowing down now... I just have to make it that final distance...

Thanks,

Emma DeMarais
sydian: [num] d/c - love you too much {me}sydian on November 17th, 2005 09:58 am (UTC)
I'm new to this fandom, so I assumed I wouldn't get any offers until I had enough stuff out there to establish some reasonable credentials as a fic author.


Well, I'd say you've established those just fine by now. :) I see where you're coming from, though. True, people might be unwilling to jump into cold water with a new writer, but I think I'll give it a try anyway once the muse stops being stubborn. Perhaps there are more kind and daring souls in the comm than we think. ;)

Your English is very good indeed!

Thank you very much! I get to practice a lot, both at home (damn internet addiction) and at uni. Plus, most books I read are in English, because there's nothing like the original experience. The English language is so much fun and much more economic than, say, German.

You should remember that not all betaing is about typos and grammar.

True enough. To me, smoothing the plot and getting the characters (and their voices) right is just as important as having near-perfect grammar - if not more so. Right now I'm pretty intimidated by Charlie's (narrative) voice because I feel like I have to factor in his genius math skills and my own grasp of math is shaky at best. Ah, well, there's always Don. *g*

Since I don't have fresh eyes, it's a lot of painful work to step my way through my fic to edit it. I not only despise the process, it robs me of valuable *writing* time.

Oh, I feel you. Boy, do I ever. Editing is a chore, especially when you have a tendency to read over your own mistakes 4 times out of 5.

Here I thought it'd just be slash with a dash of wrong, but it's much harder, much more complex, and much more resistant to my muse.

Is it ever harder. It's really not as easy as I thought to look past the fact that they're brothers. There are so many issues playing into their relationship that I feel like I have to write that big, long story of how they talk about everything and grow closer slowly and then become comfortable with the idea of being lovers before I can even think about writing the smut. But then, it looks like you're doing all that work here so maybe I can convince my muse to let me skip straight to the hot action. ;)

Gosh, sorry for hijacking your comment thread like this! I really didn't mean to, but it's all kinds of fun to talk to a fellow writer easing her way into special hell territory. :)
Emma DeMarais: BlueEyeemmademarais on December 7th, 2005 12:52 am (UTC)
True enough. To me, smoothing the plot and getting the characters (and their voices) right is just as important as having near-perfect grammar - if not more so. Right now I'm pretty intimidated by Charlie's (narrative) voice because I feel like I have to factor in his genius math skills and my own grasp of math is shaky at best. Ah, well, there's always Don. *g*

Well I have pretty good grammar skills so I like having someone focus on the story and characters for me. I get too close to my fic in writing it and fresh eyes help point out places where the flow might be off or things might not be clear.

I wouldn't worry about Charlie's voice when it comes to math. Treat him as having two modes: normal guy mode and math genius mode. Considering he's only in math genius mode when he's working an equation or a case, you're good to treat him like a fairly regular guy the rest of the time. Almost all the fic I've read pretty much ignores the math or treats it only peripherally, so it's not a major factor unless you are writing a very case oriented fic. I play with his genius level a bit, but I tend to divorce that from any actual math to keep people from getting bored with the story. ;-)

But then, it looks like you're doing all that work here so maybe I can convince my muse to let me skip straight to the hot action. ;)

LOL! Yeah, nothing like having an established universe to take care of that pesky backstory! I'll definitely be reusing this Last Call universe for a while!

Gosh, sorry for hijacking your comment thread like this! I really didn't mean to, but it's all kinds of fun to talk to a fellow writer easing her way into special hell territory. :)

Speaking of, I thought I'd post that I'm officially a card carrying member of the Special Hellfire Club. ;-) (Okay, I won't get my card until I actually publish Being There, but I finally wrote my first D/C sex scene so I'm in! Hehehe)

Thanks,

Emma DeMarais
rubynye: I Will Not... (Justabi)rubynye on November 15th, 2005 05:23 pm (UTC)
Awwww. That was warm and sweet and comforting. Like cocoa. And yet tinged with a delicious edge of Wrong.
Emma DeMarais: BlueEyeemmademarais on November 16th, 2005 07:42 am (UTC)
/snaps fingers/
I *knew* my hot cocoa was missing something! And here I thought it was marshmallows. ;-)

This series getting more and more Wrong as I go, so stay tuned.

Thanks,

Emma DeMarais
Karen: Charlie (numb3rs)byrons_brain on November 15th, 2005 08:06 pm (UTC)
wonderful.... very sweet!
Emma DeMarais: BlueEyeemmademarais on November 16th, 2005 07:42 am (UTC)
:-) Thanks...
(Deleted comment)
Emma DeMarais: BlueEyeemmademarais on November 16th, 2005 07:44 am (UTC)
Thank you. I know men don't write notes like that often, but then Charlie's not your average guy. I'm glad you liked it.

Thanks,

Emma DeMarais
mrs. hotchquixotic___ on December 29th, 2005 04:41 am (UTC)
Le giant gasp.

Okay, don't quote me on this, but I actually loved this piece, even though it alludes to / hits you over the head with the incest of the Eppes. I just loved how you handled the emotions of each brother (although I find it hard to believe that Charlie, at least the Charlie that lives in my mind, to equate sex with comfort... to have sex because he was miserable / lonely / rejected. Then, that's probably my own perception of sex having nothing to do with love, which stems from my complete and utter lack of experience... *psychoanalyzes self into the wee hours of the morning*).


ANYWAY, I loved this piece so much. My absolute favourite part was your description of Don and how he awoke that day, and the comparisons to his previous sleeping situations. Good gravy, that's some of the best metaphor I've ever read, definately the best online metaphor I've ever read.


While I wish I had a trophy / lovely pastry to give you, I can only say that I'm adding this to my tiny collection of absolutely superb Numb3rs-related writing, and that I really... really loved it. :)

Thank you so much for writing and posting it!! :D
Emma DeMarais: BlueEyeemmademarais on December 29th, 2005 05:54 am (UTC)
Wow, I thought you'd be too scared off to read any of the Last Call Series. I'm glad you decided to give it a try if you liked this that much.

And while I'd adore a lovely pastry :-) inspiring self-analysis is far more fulfilling than empty calories. /smiles/

Thanks,

Emma DeMarais

mrs. hotchquixotic___ on December 29th, 2005 08:22 pm (UTC)
Well, of late I've been trying to read some / most of the Don/Charlie things, because I've found that the best writers... write it. :P Some are tamer, and I usually skim the thing first and decide if I can handle it.

I actually read the first of your *Jewish holiday coinciding with Christmas that I cannot spell* series, but skipped over the more intense parts. I loved the 'Penguin movie' reference; I just watched the clip from Numb3rs where he mentions that movie, and thought it was absolutely adorable. :D


I've got to be brave as far as Numb3rs-fic goes; it's worth it to find stories like yours. :)
Emma DeMarais: BlueEyeemmademarais on December 30th, 2005 12:51 am (UTC)
Well, thank you. The best writers in this community do seem to gravitate to D/C. They are both such amazing characters that you want to write them. Somehow that ends up as cestfic ;-), but I'm learning not to struggle and just to go with the flow...

Once you realize that D/C cestfic has *nothing* to do with real life incest, it becomes a lot easier to just enjoy the interaction between the two brothers who obviously (in canon) love each other very much.

So be brave... If you ever decide you are up for the ultimate, read Parallel Connections Over Symmetric Spaces. It's kind of the Numb3rs slash/cest masterwork. I read it and it pretty much destroyed me. I think I walked around for several days afterwards feeling just *broken*. That's powerful...

For now, more stories to come on this LJ, so stay tuned... /grins/

Thanks,

Emma DeMarais