Mopuro (info here
Slash!, language, eventual smut and M rating
Don't own. No profit.
Previous/Continuing chapters found here
Comments/Questions very welcome! email me
Buck hit the ground hard. He hadn't even realized he'd been falling until he was windless with a mouthful of snow. What the hell? What had he fallen off of? And when did it start snowing? He was groggy and weak, he must have fallen a good distance. It took all his strength to sit up and even then it took him nearly five minutes. God, his head hurt, it throbbed and ached, the cold didn't help and there was a horrible burning sensation in his side. Looking down, it took a minute for is eyes to adjust but he could see the red on the snow, he was bleeding.
"What the hell happened?" he mumbled to himself, clumsily opening his shirt buttons. He could see the blood was coming from his side but he couldn't tell how he'd hurt himself. Musta landed on a jagged rock when he fell. He turned and looked up behind him, seeing only the grey of the sky, white flakes fluttered down silently, blanketing the earth in more whiteness. It hurt his eyes though it wasn't sunny, just the stark whiteness of the land. What had he fallen off of then?
He sat shivering, knowing it was going to take even more strength to get to his feet and start moving. He was so tired and cold; he just wanted to curl up and go to sleep. He couldn't do that though, he was injured and if he fell asleep now he'd die in this cold. He was painfully aware of how alone he was, trying to concentrate and gather his bearings. Where the hell was he? For a long time he just sat in silence, listening to the snow fall around him, unable to stand. Maybe he could crawl?
The voice filled his heart with hope and suddenly hands were under his arms, yanking him swiftly to his feet. The smell of a cheroot sent a bolt of warmth and familiarity through him, making him feel a little stronger. Now he found his feet, turning to look into Chris' concerned gaze.
"What the hell are you doing out here?" Chris asked, shaking his head at his oldest friend.
"I'm not sure." Buck just frowned, wrapping an arm around Chris' shoulders, letting him take some of his weight. "I'm confused, I musta hit my head."
"What did I tell you about that?" Chris led them back the way he'd come, following his footprints as a trail. "You're supposed to tell me when you hit your head."
Buck hobbled around, holding his aching side with his free arm, trying to recall everything that had happened. "I fell off of something, something high but I don't know what. I don't remember."
"You're bleedin' like a stuck pig." Chris' wrapped his arm around Buck, careful of his side. The smell of the other man and the sound of his voice kept pulling Buck slowly from his haze; helping his strength and attention focus a little more clearly.
They walked forever it seemed, there was nothing to see, just blinding white above and below, no out croppings, no rocks, cliffs or variation in the terrain of any kind. Buck frowned then suddenly remembering something. He was dreaming like this before! It was a much nicer dream the first time, but maybe he was just dreaming again?
"Chris, am I dreamin'?" he asked the blonde, hopeful that he was.
"I guess you could be, but why am I here?" Chris slowed them down, stopping entirely a moment later. "Am I dreamin' too?"
"Could we both be having the same dream?" Buck flinched, Jesus, his side hurt. Looking back he could see a bright trail of red in the snow behind him. He was losing blood fast.
"This is a shitty dream." Chris offered, regarding the blood trail himself. "If we don't get you to shelter soon, you're gonna bleed out."
"I don't wanna die out here." Buck frowned, feeling suddenly full of dread. This wasn't anything like his other dream; there might be a reason for that. Maybe this wasn't a dream at all, maybe he was dead? If he was dead, was this hell? It certainly wasn't heaven, but why shouldn't he be in heaven? He'd done nothing wrong. "Is this hell?" he spun on his heel, surveying the landscape more attentively now.
"I thought hell was supposed to have fire?" Chris shrugged. "Guess it could be hell, what's the last thing you remember?"
Buck sat hard in the snow, trying not to let the pain and the cold affect him. He was either dead or this was a dream, if either were the case, then the cold and pain shouldn't be bothering him, it was all in his mind. Damn but his mind was strong because he hurt so bad it made him want to throw up. He tried to think instead. What did he remember? The meadow, finding JD by the waterfall, then the woods, eating with Josiah and Nathan. No, but that was a dream! There was something after that, he remembered waking up but what happened?
With a frustrated growl he could only shake his head. "I remember this dream I was havin'. Then something happened, something real but I can't remember what. This ain't like that dream."
Chris squatted next to Buck, swallowing as his sharp eyes surveyed the land too. "Are you dead then?"
"Well I must be, but I can't see why I'm in hell if this is such a place. I ain't ever done anything real bad." Buck was frustrated, if this was hell, why wasn't it like anyone said? Knowing he was damned for eternity would be better than this confusion. "If I'm dead and this is hell, what are you doing here?"
"Helpin' you." Chris shrugged. "I don't think you're dead, not yet anyways."
"Well why not? Where else would I be?" Buck tried not to pout. It was too cold out here. Why could he still feel cold at all?
"You've got too much to do to be dead. Who is going to muck the donkeys or mend the fences? I can't break all them horses on my own." Chris stood up, peering down at the still sitting man. "I can't negotiate with Bill Felson either, that man hates me. So how am I supposed to sell off the stock in the spring?"
"I'm dead and you're worried about selling the stock?" Buck looked incredulous. "Thanks a lot, pard."
"You can't be dead; you wouldn't feel this if you were." And with that Chris kicked Buck in the rear.
"Ah, damnit!" Buck jumped to his feet, his butt stinging where he'd been kicked. "You didn't have to kick me so damn hard!"
"Got you up, didn't it?" Chris smirked smugly. "Come on now, you got stuff to do."
"What can I do out here?" Buck gestured to the unending whiteness. "This ain't the Ranch, Chris."
"You gotta find Ezra." Chris reminded. His words were like a blanket of warmth being thrown on Buck's body. He shivered on the spot, feeling warmer by the second, the snow seemed to dim around him, the whiteness a little less blinding.
"Ezra?" And Buck remembered. His dream! He'd been looking for Ezra but something interrupted him, he lost the trail, but Ezra was waiting for him. Ezra wanted to be found. If Buck didn't find the Mopuro, he'd leave forever. As he remembered his dream, remembered his task he grew warmer. Now the snow melted around him, the landscape shifted until he and Chris were in the middle of the desert. The sun was so bright and warm now, Buck took his hat off and tilted his face toward the sky, letting the warmth wash over him.
"You gonna stand here all day or are you going to go find Ezra?" Chris nudged Buck's boot with his own. "I don't have all day to spend in your dreams you know."
"You knew it was a dream?" Buck growled at the other man, taking a step toward him but he was suddenly on his knees, blinded by the pain coursing through his side. He gripped it, feeling wetness there. He was still bleeding? But this was a dream! He hadn't really fallen, so why was he still hurt?
"I'm not sure what's going on Buck, I'm just trying to help you." Chris shrugged, looking off across the scrappy desert terrain now. "I just know that you gotta find Ezra right now, he's the only one that can fix your side."
"But why, he ain't a doctor." Buck groaned, trying to stumble to his feet.
"You're in your own head and you have to ask me? You're a romantic sap, that's why. You got feelings for him."
"This is stupid." Buck blushed. Ok, so he had feelings for Ezra, everyone knew that, there wasn't a reason to deny it. Still, why was he having a dream that he was hurt and Chris was telling him that only the power of love or whatever could heal him? He stomped his foot on the ground, wincing at the pain that shot down his side. It stopped him, stopped his thoughts. This hurt too damn much to be a dream. "Chris," he looked at the blonde. "Am I dying?"
"Maybe. Probably if you don't stop bleeding."
"I got shot, didn't I?" Buck half whispered, looking down at his hand, seeing the dark red blood there, the sort of blood that only came from deep within the human body. He was hurt worse than he thought.
"Go find Ezra."
"If I find Ezra, I might still die." Buck frowned, feeling his knees threaten to buckle out from under him. Suddenly he jolted again, fully awake and feeling way less sorry for himself, rubbing his now stinging rear. Chris had kicked him again, harder this time.
"Quit your belly achin'. At least if you go and look for Ezra it's something to do, would you rather just sit here feeling sorry for yourself until you die?" Chris pointed East, handing Buck the reins to his horse which suddenly appeared out of nowhere. "Now get your ass going, if you wanna catch up you're going to have to ride hard."
Now Buck didn't argue, he climbed as quickly as he could into the saddle and without looking back he urged the horse onward, riding East. The sun baked him as he rode for hours, he could feel the heat on his back, the sweat dripping down his neck, dripping down his torso, the salt of it getting into his bullet wound, stinging painfully but still he rode. He had no water and his lips were cracked and chapped, his tongue stuck to the roof of his mouth, swallowing was painful but he ignored it, remembering what Chris had said. Riding and looking for Ezra was better than sitting around just waiting for death to show up. So he wasn't dead yet? That filled him with hope, for a while there in that snowy wasteland he really thought he was in hell.
Hell. He hadn't feared the place before because he was quite sure if there was an afterlife he was going up and not down. Why shouldn't he go up? He really was a good man. Wait. Go up? He'd been through the meadows, woods, snow filled mountains and now the desert but he wasn't any closer to finding Ezra. He hadn't tried up though. Slowing the horse, Buck eased down into a slow trot, regarding the cloudless sky above him. Maybe Ezra was up there somewhere? If so, how could he get to him? But why should Ezra be up? Because, he thought suddenly, heaven is supposed to be a place where you're happy and when have you been happier than when you get to play with that little Mopuro? To see him smile at you so slyly, looking all cute and helpless in your night shirt, tucked in your bed. My bed!
As suddenly as Buck thought it he found himself in the clouds. He floated, weightless and light and yet his feet were able to land on the fluffy soft material below him. It didn't hurt up here, his side didn't ache. He bounced slightly, the cloud dipping from his light weight then springing him gently forward. He laughed with glee, bouncing from one cloud to the next, he'd always wondered what a cloud felt like; pondered it sometimes as he worked and saw them passing over head, taking shapes from time to time.
It was turning evening but the sun was still casting light upon the earth. It was a purple light now, glowing orange closer to the sun, washing out into soft pinks before blending together almost seamlessly. The cloud world was covered in a relaxing evening glow, the purple soothing Buck's worries. That purple was sorta like the jacket Ezra had. Then he remembered the half breed.
Buck felt his heart soar, turning toward the southern drawl. There not more than a few feet away was his feather bed, and nestled on it in his own night shirt, smiling so widely at him sat his Mopuro. "Peach!" Buck was so happy he shouted, bounding across the bouncy clouds toward his intended. "Ezra, I been lookin' all over for you!"
Ezra sat up on his knees, his ears perking in delight, his tail bushing as he eagerly awaited Buck to come to him. He just smiled widely, looking so relaxed with his slightly lidded eyes. "Ah've been here, waiting for you."
Buck made it to the bed and climbed on quickly, it felt even softer up here. Suddenly he could feel Ezra's hands on him, actually feel them like it were real. He groaned in an almost despaired happiness, gathering the half breed into his arms, he pulled him close and hugged him tight. Ezra hugged him back just as tight, nuzzling his ear, pressing soft kisses to his cheeks.
"Mule, why didn't you come sooner?" his voice was a soft whimper. "Ah waited and waited."
"I couldn't find you." Buck told him, rubbing one hand down the other man's back, reaching his free hand up to pet through those soft, gorgeous locks. "I looked everywhere!"
"But Ah was right here, all the time." Ezra clawed his nails down Buck's back gently, squirming in his embrace. "Ah've been waiting to copulate."
"Mmm copulate?" Buck enjoyed the squirming, giving Ezra's ears a little tug, trying to nose his way toward the Mopuro's face. He wanted to kiss Ezra real bad. "What's that?"
"We won't be friends if you wake up..." Ezra babbled, keeping his face away from Buck, not allowing the kiss.
Buck felt his heart beat slowing, his side suddenly ached again, painfully so. "What, why? Ezra..."
The squirming Mopuro pressed more kisses to Buck's cheeks. "Because if you wake up Ah want to make love."
Buck's eyes widened, he hugged the Mopuro tighter on instinct, crushing their bodies together as the burn stopped in his side and radiated out through his body, pooling down toward his groin. He swallowed and smiled shyly, not sure why but this was a dream after all, wasn't it? "You wanna make love, Ez?"
Ezra sat back, regarding him with a cool gaze, his accent thick when he spoke next. "Only if you fight, you stubborn fool." And before Buck could respond Ezra's lips were on his own, kissing ever so sweetly. The Mopuro suckled his moustache gently, nuzzling into it with a soft purr, warming Buck to his very core. He could only melt against his Mopuro, laying out on top of that warm body on his warm soft bed, allowing himself to be kissed in such a gentle, enticing manner. This dream wasn't so bad after all.
Ezra picked at the food on his plate. He wasn't hungry and it was no surprise as to why, but he didn't know what was coming up. Any moment he could be hearing from Vin and need to go rescue JD. He needed his strength, he needed to eat but it was a hard chore getting the food into his mouth alone, let alone swallowing it. Each bite made him gag and he wasn't sure why, he figured it had something to do with guilt. That seemed about right.
He sat in Buck's bedroom beside the still man, refusing to leave his bedside at all now. So he just sat, quietly thinking to himself, keeping his sharp eyes on Buck at all times. He smelled constantly, afraid each sniff he took the acrid smell of blood would meet his nostrils. If Buck lost any more blood...
Shaking the thought from his head he tried to focus on something else, something positive. Ezra had been cynical most of his life and with good cause, so simply jumping to the brighter side was much easier said than done. If he sat here simply wallowing in his self-pity however he knew he'd go crazy. Perhaps he could merely get by with a good memory rather than a positive thought?
Now he just needed a good memory. Immediately he thought of the incident in the bathtub with the Mule. He smiled slightly to himself, a slight blush coming to his cheeks at the memory of the way the Mule handled him. The way those big hands assisted him in his release, the way Buck smelled so aroused, the way he could sense the other man was just dying to kiss him, to hold and cuddle him afterward. The Mule was a big softie, that was for certain. He tried not to think about this with regret, though he wished now he'd simply turned his head and kissed Buck like he wanted to.
Oh the way that man could kiss! The way that wonderful moustache tickled and stimulated his lips and skin... Surely the Mule could write a book on kissing. Now he thought to the incident with the honey thorn and blushed in shame. He hadn't been as truthful as he should have been when he explained the effects of the root on Mopuro. He lead them all to believe the root simply made Mopuro horny enough to launch themselves at the closest person and hump away; this is not how the root worked at all. While it was a sexual stimulant, the root simply intensified feelings that already existed. Had Buck not been there, the root would not have affected Ezra to the extent it had. It may have made him slightly aroused for it was a potent dose, though it was Buck that caused the wicked reaction. Ezra had been lying to himself even, but his body told the truth. He wondered now how he had the strength to fight it? How did he not simply leap across the table onto Buck's lap and beg for some form of attention and release?! Stubbornness, that's how. The extent of his own stubbornness surprised even him sometimes.
The thought of Buck arousing him naturally brought his mind to their last sexual encounter. The one in which the Mule used his moustache to tickle the most intimate places on Ezra's body. It had been wonderful and he'd let it happen without much remorse. It wasn't just that it had been sexually satisfying; it was something deeper, something on another level that made the half breed's heart flutter wildly in his chest. The way Buck held him so close, kissed him even after he'd achieved his own release, the way he looked at Ezra and gathered him back into his arms... If the man had simply been seeking pleasure he would have done his business and moved on, but he had not. How could Buck look at him in that manner? Like he was the most wonderful thing the other man had ever seen?
He blushed and fidgeted, frowning at the unconscious man as if he had just done the act in that moment. Foolish Mule, Ezra was no bargain. He was a stubborn, prideful, cynical and cautious man at most times. But the Mule didn't seem to see that. What was it exactly that Buck saw? Ezra wasn't sure, but whatever it was the big man liked it, liked it a lot apparently.
"Buck," he sighed and set his plate aside, petting a cool hand against the other man's burning hot forehead. "You are a fool, sir. Do you know that?"
He got no response though he did not expect one. Buck Wilmington was a fool! A large, loping, big hearted, smitten fool. He knew that even Chris would agree with that assessment. Hell, Buck would probably agree to it as well. Ezra thought to their first meeting now, how he'd been on the ground looking up so incredulously at the tall oafish Mule. Buck seemed surprised as well, though smiling in that easy way of his, but upon seeing Ezra closely that smile had widened into something else. Why hadn't he seen it then? He couldn't have avoided Buck if he'd been half way out of town on his horse; the pull was far too strong. He'd have been sucked into the other man's presence no matter what happened; it was easy to see now.
Thinking of that smile had Ezra smiling in a sad manner himself. He longed for Buck to open his eyes and smile like that now. To have his eyes lid in that relaxed manner, making him look almost sleepy as his moustache stretched and almost hid his lips... Many nights Ezra sat up in bed and read out loud to the Mule, he'd catch that smile out of the corner of his eye and feel flustered, trying not to stutter in his speech. How could just a smile make his insides knot up in such tangles?
Buck whimpered uncomfortably, breaking the silence of the room. His features strained as pain or a bad dream seemed to wash over him. He was still fighting, fighting with everything he had Nathan told him, and there was something in the Healer's voice that lead Ezra to believe he didn't think Buck would make it. That he was surprised that Buck was still alive at all. The idea that Buck could simply give in at any moment was the most sobering slap in the face the half breed had ever been dealt. Green eyes roved the shifting form on the bed as he pet and calmed him the best to his ability, whispering soothingly.
It may have been foolish on his own behalf to think such things but Ezra knew that Buck was not a quitter. He was going to make it, he was quite sure of it. Buck wouldn't give up, he couldn't give up and Ezra would be there the moment he opened those mischievous blue eyes. Maybe being so certain of such a thing made Ezra just as big a fool as he thought Buck was. In that case, he and Buck could be fools together.
Vin eyed the other man with great care, this vaquero, Raphael? He was a Mopuro too, not just any Mopuro, also a feral. For a long moment he said nothing, staring at the darker man. JD was just a few feet away. Did he make a run for JD? Did he try to deal with this vaquero? Was he even a threat? The hair on the back of Vin's neck stood on end and he growled deeply in his throat on instinct.
Raphael smirked slightly, giving his head a little shake. He was right in his decision; this particular feral was just the man he'd been waiting for. The other men of the camp were near the fire, further away from the two feral men so it was safe enough to speak here for now. The vaquero knew if he made any sudden movements, the shaggy tracker would be on him, teeth bared before he could blink.
"I think we can help each other, amigo."
"I ain't your friend." Vin spoke finally, his blue eyes narrowed in caution. "You helped them get the kid, give me one good reason why I shouldn't gut you here an' now."
"There is much to tell and maybe now is not the time and place." Raphael slowly lowered his hands, hooking them in his gun belt. "There is much going on that you do not know. Your friend, the half breed feral gambler? He is in much trouble."
While Vin knew this Raphael was feral, he was startled to hear his knowledge of Ezra's feral nature. He just cocked his head, keeping one ear turned toward the camp and his nose on the kid. How did Ezra play into this then? Was he walkin' straight into a trap? This was their Mopuro tracker, the one that helped them catch JD.
"These men are no stranger to Mopuro; in fact I would say they know us better than we know ourselves."
"What are you gettin' at?" Vin tensed, ready to leap away at a moment's notice. He didn't like being in the open like this, not one bit. "Who shot the kid?"
"It is for Fernando that I do this, but I have been waiting for you amigo; waiting for you and the half breed for a long time."
Vin softened a little, smelling the guilt and worry washing off the other man at the mention of that name. "Who is Fernando?"
"Mi hermano," Raphael looked at the ground suddenly, shaking his head. "This is what they do, amigo. When they want a certain Mopuro, they take one he cares for the most. I do not know where they take them. If we refuse to do what they ask, they will torture them. If we still refuse..?"
He knew the answer already. "They kill them."
"They took your brother and made you track the kid." the pieces were suddenly falling into place. "They want Ezra?"
"I have done some work for them before." Raphael paused to sniff the air. "I have been waiting to find strong men such as myself to end this, to find the captured Mopuro and free us all. I wait a long time, amigo."
There was commotion by the fire, the men were getting ready to turn in for the night and begin their first bout of night hawking. Raphael shifted uneasily.
"Leave the boy here for now; we will talk more away from here."
Vin eyed JD and then looked back to Raphael, his mouth a tight line. He had a chance now to take the kid and go, they'd be discovered sooner than he'd like though.
"Trust me, amigo. I will help you save him but there is more you must know."
It seemed a long moment passed as Vin turned the decision over in his head. Finally he spoke, nodding at the vaquero. "Alright, I'll play your way for now. If you go back on your word..? I'll kill ya."
Raphael smiled now. "Si, seņor. I believe you would."
They hadn't bothered to discuss where to meet. Vin moved away from the camp and disappeared into the thick foliage. This Raphael was no fool; he'd be able to find Vin easily. He made no effort to hide his trail, knowing the humans wouldn't pick up on it and while this could be a trap something inside told him Raphael was being honest with him. He didn't put it past men to have captured a Mopuro's loved ones to manipulate his actions. It was a story as old as time itself. Besides, getting JD away from the camp was only part of the problem. They still had a lot of questions they needed answered. It made sense too, since JD hadn't been hurt further.
But who had taken the shot at JD and why? Why were these men after Ezra particularly? It seemed to stand to reason the men chose their Mopuro carefully, Ezra was most likely desired for some skill he possessed or some service he could provide. He could guess a thousand things and none of them could be right. Best to wait for Raphael.
He didn't have to wait very long. Not long after midnight the vaquero stepped into the small clearing, his hands once again held up to show he was hiding no secret weapon. Vin sniffed the air, smelling no one else waiting before he dropped quietly out of his tree perch.
"You are cautious, amigo. That is wise." Raphael let his hands lower slowly once more, dropping into a similar squat as the other Mopuro so they could whisper together. He wasted no time telling what he knew. "They do not tell me much, so I will tell you all I know. There is a man here that I have not seen before, amigo, but I have heard much of. The one who is boss."
"You think this man is the one that started all this? The one that calls all the shots?"
"Si, seņor. I know he is. Jack Wesley."
"Wesley?" Vin frowned; the name didn't ring a bell.
"He is un hombre malo. Never has he come out to work like this. He speaks of the half breed personally. I think they have met, amigo."
Vin's blood froze. Could Wesley be...?
"They argue, the trail boss and Wesley. He would say the half breed was not worth the trouble, but Wesley he will not listen. When the half breed stayed on the Ranch the boss got uneasy, too many guns against them now."
"He tried to shoot the kid." Vin brightened, shifting on his feet. "So Wesley would give up on Ezra?"
"Si, but the big man..."
"Buck took the bullet. They're trying to lure Ezra out with JD, damn." Vin cursed. "What do they want Ezra for?"
Raphael shrugged and shook his head. "They do not tell me. It is something big, amigo. Muy grande."
"Do they know about me?"
"No, I do not tell them."
Vin smiled gratefully at that. Raphael smelled to be telling him the truth. The man was only doing what he had to to keep his brother alive; Vin couldn't fault him for that. It would be difficult for one man alone to try and take out a force like Wesley. There's no telling how many men the other man employed. Wesley held a trump card in all of this, if the Mopuro tried to rebel against him, he would simply alert the world to their existence.
"We need human help." Vin said out loud as he thought it. No wonder Raphael has been waiting a long time.
"These Ranchers," Raphael turned and gazed the direction of the Ranch. "They can be trusted? They would help us free Fernando and the others?"
"They can be trusted alright." Vin nodded, giving a slight nod thinking of Bucklin. "An' if that big one lives to tell of it you can bet he'll help free the others. I reckon they all will, but I ain't gonna swear to it until we ask 'em. Reckon the Preacher will help too, he ain't likely to let such wrong doins continue."
"And the half breed?" Raphael couldn't help the hopeful expression that crossed his face. Nothing had been promised but it was a chance, a chance he could finally free his brother and be rid of these bastards. It's more than he'd ever had to go on.
"He don't know he's half feral. Reckon there's gonna be hell to pay when he gets his hands on them that shot Buck. Got a feelin' he'll help, the kid too. First we gotta get the kid outta there."
"They do not know of you, I will release him and tell him where you wait. They will think he has escaped in the morning."
Vin smiled, knowing the other feral Mopuro could get JD out of the camp silently; they'd have plenty of time to get back to the Ranch at this rate. "Well what about you?"
"If I leave..." Raphael blinked slowly, swallowing the lump in his throat. "Fernando will be killed."
"You stay with them." Vin rose to his feet, his voice stern. "I mean it, Raphael. You stay with them until we get Fernando out. You get that kid to me and I swear I'll help you save your brother."
Raphael stood too, staring at Vin with respect and relief, his shoulders slumping slightly from the weight of his burden being lifted - even if only slightly. "I will release him. If we need to speak further, if they plan more I will signal you. Get the half breed away from the Ranch and the others will follow him. Then start in Tascosa, that is where they hire from, amigo."
Vin nodded. "Trust the men at the Ranch. Someone will always be there. I will tell them of you and what you've done for us. If you need to get word to me, leave it with them."
"You are leaving?"
Vin just nodded, a slight smirk playing on his lips. "I'm goin' to Tascosa."
Buck's eyes blinked open slowly and with great effort. He could see the ceiling of his room first; he knew that's what it was logically and not on sight recognition. His eyes were bleary and unfocused. He swallowed, feeling a sharp pain in all his actions, his side hurt a lot, so he had been shot? He couldn't really remember much, but that seemed natural for this sort of thing. He recalled sometimes when men got shot if it were bad they'd sorta forget.
The room was warm and there was a weight on one side of his chest. He was trying to work up the strength to lift his head but moving his eyes around took all the energy he had. The soft scent of ginger and chestnuts met his nose, he knew that was Ezra. The half breed had to be right there and Buck willed the man to look over and notice him before he couldn't keep his eyes open any longer. He didn't want to fall asleep again, he kept having weird dreams but that last dream, the last part wasn't so bad.
"Mule?!" he heard his name and waited, hoping the owner of that beautiful southern lilt leaned into his vision because try as he may he couldn't turn and look. Fortune smiled upon him, a blurry shape hovered close to his face then, it was too blurry to see but he knew it was Ezra, knew by the sound of his voice, by the smell of him, by the two dots of pure green he could make out of the blur.
A hand was in his hair, smoothing it back and he fought not to close his eyes. That felt wonderful. Now their positions were reversed, he was the injured one and Ezra was tending to him it seemed. But Ezra was still hurt; he frowned remembering that, wondering about the Mopuro's ankle. He should be lying in bed resting.
Ezra's heart fluttered so wildly in his chest he couldn't help but cry out, seeing two dazed blue eyes staring up at the ceiling. Buck had his eyes open! He wasn't moving his head, so Ezra leaned over him, seeing those eyes try to focus on his face. Could Buck see him? He noticed the frown then and a slight panic gripped him. What if Buck couldn't see?
"Ah'm here, Mule." he whispered, leaning down to nuzzle Buck's neck and ear. "Please, Buck. Please don't die."
Buck smiled a little at the soft plea, wishing he could lift his arm to soothe his Mopuro. How bad was his injury then if Ezra seemed this pleased to see him merely open his eyes? Hadn't they talked after he'd been shot though? Why couldn't he remember? Maybe he'd been in shock.
"Ah'm sorry." Ezra breathed against his ear, kissing a trail up to Buck's lips. He gave him a loving, apologetic kiss, letting their lips touch a little longer then he meant. The kiss was like a wind to Buck's sails, he felt slightly stronger, romantic notions aside, injured or not it aroused him that Ezra was kissin' him, and that might be where the strength was comin' from but regardless it was a good thing.
"What for?" he croaked after a minute, wincing at how raspy his voice was.
Green eyes widened as the Mopuro pulled back to regard him. Oh Lawd, Buck was speaking. Buck spoke. Maybe... maybe... he leaned down again, pressing a hungrier kiss against the injured man's lips, devouring Buck in a desperate kiss. He lost control of himself, relief flooding through his body as he suckled and nibbled Buck's lower lip.
Damn. Buck's eyes widened, he almost wanted to get injured more often if it made Ezra kiss him like this. He sure did love kissin' Ezra. But he was feelin' tired and he knew sleep would claim him again any moment now, no matter how good it felt to have his Mopuro kissin' him.
"Sleepy, Ez." he answered groggily, blinking his eyes against the heavy feeling.
"You need to rest." Ezra whispered against his lips. "Go to sleep, but only if you promise to come back." Don't die Buck, he begged and pleaded, guilt wracking every fiber of his being. No matter what the Preacher said, no matter what he knew logically to be right, he couldn't stop feeling like this was his fault. That if Buck died, he'd be to blame.
"..'ome back.." Buck murmured. "To copu..late?"
Ezra sat back rather startled. Buck had heard him after all? He really was a stubborn mule! The half breed stroked a hand through Buck's hair, soothing him to comfort once more but he couldn't help the smirk on his lips. If Buck heard nothing else, he bet he at least picked up on that part of it. "Yes Mule, to copulate."
"...that mean...make love?" Buck snickered, wincing as the action sent a bolt of lightning fire into his side. Ok, no laughin' for a while.
The Mopuro smiled, wrapping Buck in a large hug. He pressed their chests together, leaning over the recumbent man from his position on the chair next to the bed. Nuzzling Buck's neck, he dipped his nose into Buck's ear before letting his tongue trace it lazily, sending a tickling rush through other man. Buck's heart surged and warmed again, Ezra was warm and felt so nice against him. He hoped the Mopuro stayed right there for a while.
"It does. Make love," Ezra teased. "Would you like to make love to me, Mule? Would you like to fuck me?" he added with an excited whisper.
Buck groaned, unable to open his eyes but still the excitement poured from Ezra right into his own body. He wanted that, wanted that very badly. Wanted it so long now it seemed it's all he could ever remember wanting. "..'d never... just ..fuck you." he managed instead.
"Ah know." Ezra pressed closer, hugging the taller man even tighter, as if attempting to pour some of his own life into him to help him hold on. "And that's why you can have me."
Buck smiled slowly at that, letting the sleep take over. This time, he better not dream. If he did? He just wanted to dream about Ezra saying that over and over and over again, asking Buck to make love to him. Asking and asking, begging and whining for it. The idea made his lips purse before he finally gave in to the urge. This time, knowing Ezra was right there, so close, just waiting for him, he felt warm and relaxed. This time, sleep was welcome.
<-- Chapter 18
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