Through A Glass Darkly XI

TAGD 11 title

Banner by Bindingdiva

The low drone of the small jet engines overhead made Tam blow out a gusty sigh of relief. The plane was not yet on the tarmac and he wouldn’t be late. Mrs McClusky had kept him talking at the Glen Stores and it was only when a customer had arrived that Tam had realized how close he was cutting it if he was to get to the airport to pick up his employer. The Laird was a stickler for timekeeping and had been known to sack staff for being just a minute late. Tam loved his job, although he thought his employer was vain, rude and arrogant, and he didn’t want to lose the chance to continue driving the impressive stable of vehicles owned by Simon de’Vere.

Pausing for just a moment to check his tie and cap in the rear view mirror Tam hopped out of the Rolls and closed the door, listening with pleasure to the heavy thunk of the lock on the precision-made car. The old girl may have been vintage but she still had loads of class.

Walking quickly Tam made his way into the main passenger area of the small airport. He tipped a wink to the security guard who looked terminally bored sitting at the desk near the entrance. Wick airport only took internal, small plane flights and the chance of international terrorists was almost non-existent. Still the poor guy had to be there, his only excitement the odd irate traveler or drunk who wandered in off the main road to the town.

Tam’s thoughts were stopped by the heavy outer door swinging open. The plane was clearly visible on the tarmac and a small crocodile of passengers was being led across the apron and into the main concourse. The Laird stuck out, being a full head above anyone else traveling. At 6’4” the man was an imposing sight; his jet-black curly hair, only touched with silver at the temples, topped a soft but still handsome face. He wore a long military greatcoat fastened up against the ever-present wind which whipped across the flat land surrounding the runway. His cap was firmly pressed under one arm while a large black briefcase was clutched in his hand.

Simon swept the lounge area with a quick glance as he passed into the terminal building. Seeing Tam waiting for him de’Vere strode across the room towards the chauffeur.

“I have one bag in the hold,” he barked out, his comment sounding more like an order. He moved to the seating area, folded his long frame into a chair and pulled out a newspaper from his briefcase.

Tam tried hard not to roll his eyes. The Laird was a very important man in the Royal Air Force and no one was allowed to forget that. “Yes, sir,” Tam replied quickly as his woolgathering earned him a hard stare from his employer.

The baggage truck was soon pulling in to its docking area on the concourse and Tam moved quickly to make sure he was there to receive de’Vere’s luggage as soon as it was offloaded. Having secured the expensive leather bag he moved over to Simon’s vicinity and cleared his throat.

“I have yer bag, yer Lordship.”

With a curt nod Simon rose and followed Tam out of the building into the cold, blustery morning air. Dawn had not long broken, coming late as it did in this far northern end of Scotland, and the watery sun was just making its way over the horizon. Low gray clouds scudded across the sky, but it seemed there would be too much wind to allow rain to fall.

As they both entered the car Simon tapped the back of Tam’s seat to indicate that he was ready for him to drive off. The throaty purr of the vintage engine was dulled in the luxurious interior of the classic car and Simon settled back into the softness of the leather seats. It was a few minutes before a thought made him sit forward.

“Did you make any other trips to Wick while I’ve been gone?”

“Aye, sir, I did. I picked up Colonel O’Neill the day before yesterday and…”

Simon stopped him with a resounding thump to the back of his seat. “Good, good,” he said, a smile on his face wider than Tam had ever seen before. The Laird was not a dour man by any means, but he rarely showed anything but his stern command face to the staff. He leaned back, a signal to Tam that their conversation was over. Tam thought about letting de’Vere know Colonel Jack was not the only visitor, but he had been summarily dismissed and it was clear the Laird expected Tam to drive and not talk. So, as a conscientious employee Tam did as he was told. Privately he thought that the Laird was probably not going to like the surprise waiting for him at the Castle, but he kept that little nugget to himself, too. With a small, secret smile Tam drove carefully down the road and towards Glen Arach.

*****

Jack woke to the familiar and much loved scent of Daniel. Spooned tightly together they’d spent the night in the Blue Room, ensconced in the ornate four-poster bed. The initial heat of the night before had softened to caresses as Jack realized just how tired Daniel was. The younger man had eventually fallen asleep in his arms with Jack taking until the early hours of the morning to follow him. The relief of having Daniel in his arms had come as quite a shock. He knew he loved the younger man, but Jack hadn’t realized how much his happiness depended on having Daniel close by. The idea of a future without Daniel in it made Jack shiver with horror.

The first rays of weak sunlight piercing the half-open drapes spilled over the bed. Jack felt his morning erection grow and lengthen as Daniel moved sinuously in his sleep. Tipping his head back Jack looked down across the wide expanse of Daniel’s back to the dark, shadowed space between his butt and the soft sheets that were draped across them; the little hint of something sensual and almost forbidden hidden there made Jack’s cock lurch and his pulse race. Feeling compelled to touch and taste he gently pressed his lips against Daniel’s back, moving the tip of his tongue over the silky flesh, picking up the subtle tang of soap and sweat and Daniel. His hips gave an involuntary thrust forward which pushed his cock between the globes of Daniel’s ass and left the head tucked up behind the soft skin of his balls. Jack gasped as the stimulation made his latent arousal come to the fore. Daniel gave a soft moan and pushed his ass back into Jack’s lap, grinding his hips a little as he did so and Jack couldn’t help the breathy ‘ahhh’ that forced its way through his vocal chords.

“Are you awake?” Jack whispered into Daniel’s ear.

“Mmmmm,” Daniel replied, his voice rough with sleep.

Jack wasn’t sure if that was an affirmative or not; that was until he felt long fingers running trails of fire across the head of his cock. Daniel had reached down between his legs and behind his balls to find Jack’s cock in its erotic nest where it lay, already beginning to paint the sensitive skin with pre-come. Jack moaned, louder this time, as Daniel subtly squeezed his thighs together creating a tight space for Jack to thrust into. Without any words Daniel reached around and circled Jack’s wrist with warm, dry fingers and with a slight tug encouraged Jack to reach over his hip and take a hold of Daniel’s half-hard length. Jack didn’t need any more direction or encouragement and he circled the hardening flesh with his fingers, holding it just below the head just as he knew Daniel liked it. Slowly and smoothly Daniel began to rock his hips, putting delicious pressure on Jack, who was caught between his thighs, with every backward push, and sliding his own cock through Jack’s fingers on the forward thrust. The movement was slow and leisurely, neither man expending much energy, but the tactile stimulation was intense.

Jack swiped his thumb across the head of Daniel’s cock using the copious liquid there to smooth the passage through his hand. The slick fluid made the velvet skin slid easily through his calloused fingers. His own cock was getting double input, both the glide of his length between Daniel’s tensed thigh muscles and the continued stimulation of the head as it slid across Daniel’s balls. Daniel reached back and placed his hand against the side of Jack’s head, pulling the older man into the crook of Daniel’s neck. Jack growled, low and feral, as he took hold of the shoulder muscle with his teeth and worried it, nipping and sucking. This was love making at its most intimate. Jack snaked his free hand around Daniel’s chest and began gently pulling and flicking Daniel’s nipples, making the younger man whimper and moan a little louder, the tempo of his hips beginning to increase. A slight squeeze of Daniel’s thighs made Jack give an answering moan and they both began to feel the first slow embers of arousal becoming a fire.

“God, Jack! Il mio amore, la mio adorato. Fare l’amore con me. Dammi il tuo cazzo e mi fanno venire.” Italian fell from Daniel’s lips like sweet honey and Jack felt a surge of passion as the words were whispered between them.

“Il mio dolce, Daniel,” he replied, his voice rough with longing and want. “Mia vita, amore mio. Non lasciarti andare, mai mai…Vuoi sempre fottere per sempre.”

The sound of those words as they were whispered into his ear made Daniel lurch with arousal, his hips snapping forward pulling on Jack’s iron hard cock whilst pushing his own straining length through Jack’s firm grasp. Suddenly the heat was turned way up and they were both drowning in stimulation overload. Jack pulled Daniel firmly into his chest, taking over the rocking movement from Daniel and supplementing it with strong thrusts from his butt and hips as he held Daniel’s cock in a tighter grip. Daniel’s head fell onto Jack’s shoulder; his eyes rolling back into his head; his lips opening in a sensuous ‘O’. Turning his head to meet his lover’s, Jack pressed his lips onto Daniel’s in a shower of wet open-mouthed kisses, accompanied by his hot tongue mimicking the action of his cock between Daniel’s thighs. Sweat and pre-come were liberally lubricating Jack’s way through the tight confines between Daniel’s big leg muscles and he could feel the dark roiling bite of his orgasm as it wound its way around the base of his spine and began to spike in his balls.

“Danny…Oh fuck, Danny. Getting close baby; getting so close…nearly there.” Jack’s cries were becoming urgent and Daniel found this, coupled with his words, so very hot that he moaned loudly.

“Yeah, Jack…Oh yeah. I’m here babe…With you…Gonna come with you.” Daniel once again reached around, this time to pull Jack back into scorching hot kisses as both men raced to the inevitable conclusion of their now frenzied coupling.

Jack knew he couldn’t hold on any longer. Dragging his mouth from Daniel’s he growled roughly in his ear. “Now, Daniel, give it up now…Now…NOW!”

With perfect choreography their orgasms erupted from them, Jack pouring his seed across Daniel’s thighs and balls as Daniel came in long ribbons through Jack’s fingers and onto the sheet in front of him. Jack’s deep grunt of satisfaction was harmonized by Daniel’s long ‘Ohhhhh’ as he cried out in sheer ecstasy.

They both trembled with aftershocks for several minutes until, sated and a little shaky, they turned to face one another. Daniel trailed a gentle touch across Jack’s cheek and smiled, the deep dimple in his cheek making Jack’s heart give a little flutter.

“We need to do a lot of talking, Jack.” Daniel said earnestly. “We have to face the fact that we may well need to get back to the mountain, especially if it looks like there may be some off world influence here.”

Jack sighed and nodded in acquiescence. “Yeah, I know. But somehow I think this is only going to affect us. I have a feeling that…” He stopped and bit his lip.

Daniel placed a warm palm against Jack’s cheek. “What, Jack?”

“Daniel,” Jack started quietly, “I’m starting to think that everything – the dreams, the kids I saw, Izel’s visions – somehow it feels like it’s all linked to you.” Jack shook his head slightly, not finding the words he wanted to explain his uneasy feelings to Daniel. “I think they all point to…”

Before Jack could finish his sentence the door of the room was flung open. Jack looked up over Daniel’s shoulder to see the large form of Simon de’Vere stride into the room. The big man’s eyes landed on Jack and seemed to light up from the inside. The sight made Jack feel very uneasy although he couldn’t quite fathom out why.

“Jack, mo giollan bòidheach.” Simon beamed at Jack. “What are you doing in here, I told Mac to put you in my room? Stupid old…”

Jack felt Daniel stiffen at the Gaelic endearment at the same time Simon realized Jack was not alone in the big blue-draped bed. Jack looked down at Daniel and gave him a little sheepish grin. They were both still flushed and sticky from their lovemaking and Jack was sure the room must reek of sex. Daniel raised his eyebrows at Jack, took a deep breath and turned in Jack’s arms, making sure that they still encircled him by holding Jack’s hands against his sticky belly. Luckily the covers were high enough to hide the evidence of Daniel’s orgasm that was still slick and only just cooling on his skin.

“Si,” Jack began, “this is Daniel, my partner. We spoke about him in DC a few months ago.” Jack couldn’t subdue the surge of pride and caveman glee he felt as he watched Simon’s response to his first look at Daniel. Simon’s pupils dilated noticeably and the tall man sucked in a sharp gasp of breath.

The Lord felt his heart sink a little as he took in the sight of his first love lying in bed with the hottest man he’d ever seen. And Simon would be the first to admit there had be a great many men in his life. de’Vere had been under the impression that Davin was the most beautiful man in the world, at least that’s what Cosmo and Vogue had said last year. But this man in front of him was even more stunning than the model and even though (according to his conversation with Jack over six months earlier) Dr Jackson was fifteen years older than Simon’s young lover, he certainly didn’t look it. As Simon thought about Jack’s relationship with this man, a hard calculating expression crossed his face and it was not missed by the men in the bed in front of him.

“Huh,” Simon huffed dismissively. “Yes, I seem to recall you mentioning him in passing.”

Daniel felt Jack tense at this slight and he knew that if he didn’t do something to make things a little less tense then words could be spoken Jack might regret later.

“Pleased to meet you, Lord Granville,” Daniel said pleasantly, speaking as if they were meeting at a dinner party, not with Daniel half-naked in a sex-soaked bed. “Please excuse me not getting up, but as you can see you have us both at a slight disadvantage.”

Jack found himself smothering a grin at the elegant way Daniel had pointed out both Simon’s rude entrance into the bedroom and his subsequent treatment of two guests in his house.

“Yes…Well…” the Lord growled, “Perhaps you’ll be kind enough to meet me in the breakfast room. Maybe then I can get an explanation of what has been going on in my home while I’ve been in London.” With that he turned on his heel and strode purposefully out of the room. The door swung shut with some force behind him and the two lovers could hear his strident voice echoing down the stairwell as he yelled for Mac.

“Hmm.” Daniel grimaced as he turned back to look at Jack, who was struggling with the chuckles that were bubbling in his throat. “Why do I get the impression I may not be very welcome.”

“Nah.” Jack shrugged, finally getting the laughter under control as he saw the look of real concern on Daniel’s face. “Look, Danny, he’ll love you once he gets to know you.”

Daniel heaved a disbelieving sigh. “Oh, really? I doubt that, being as he thinks you are, and I quote, his beautiful boy and he just caught us in flagrante delicto.”

“Well, thankfully not so much in flagrante as post flagrante,” Jack quipped, but was met with an unhappy glare from Daniel. “Danny,” he tried again, his tone more serious. “I’m sure Simon will be fine when he gets over the shock of seeing you in all your amazing hotness.”

Daniel squirmed uncomfortably at the compliment, but was secretly very pleased.

“You know he really wasn’t expecting to see you,” Jack explained. “He was still here when Izel rang to say I was on my way, but he’d gone by the time you left La Troza.”

Reluctantly Daniel nodded in agreement. He wasn’t going to argue this with Jack, but he was sure he had seen something resembling hate on Simon’s face when he had realized that Daniel was in bed with Jack. Daniel could see that Jack still had a great deal of affection for Simon, but he was concerned it would blind his older lover to Simon’s true agenda. It was obvious to Daniel the Lord had seen Jack’s visit as an opportunity to reconnect with his first love and that made Daniel very nervous.

“We’d better get in the shower,” he sighed deeply. What he really wanted was to spend days and days in bed with Jack, making up for the long and painful hours they had spent apart. They were only just getting back on an even keel and now there was something, or rather somebody, else looking to put a spanner in the works. “I’m sure it won’t go down well if we keep breakfast waiting.”

Levering his long legs out of the warm bed Daniel stood and then turned to see a leeringly appreciative look on Jack’s face as his lover looked him up and down.

“Woof,” Jack growled lecherously.

“Shut up, giollan bòidheach,” Daniel goaded and then gave a most unmanly squeal as Jack leapt out of the bed, clawing his fingers as he reached for Daniel’s belly. Both men made a dash for the richly appointed bathroom, laughing uproariously.

*****

The breakfast room seemed to ring with the strident sound of Lord Granville’s apoplectic ranting. A fire popped and crackled in the large stone hearth, lending a warm glow that chased away the rather watery, pale light that struggled in through the leaded windows. The man himself was stalking around the large breakfast table that dominated the richly decorated room, his face a deep red veering towards puce.

“Mac, you stupid old fuck. Didn’t I tell you to put Master Jonny in my room? If we had to accommodate Dr Jackson – and I don’t know why he couldn’t go to the Arach Hotel – then he could have been put in the Blue Room.” Simon rounded on Mac who was standing straight and stalwart in the center of the room, looking not at all harried by the tongue-lashing that was being directed at him. “I think you’re losing it, old man. You may have been a favorite of my father, but I’m wondering if it’s time we put you out to pasture,” Simon sneered over at the elderly man. “Just one thing I ask you to do, one simple, solitary thing and you can’t even get that right.” The younger man slammed his hand down on the table in his temper, causing the cutlery and glassware to jump into the air and land back in disarray. “Well?” de’Vere demanded, “What excuse do you have this time.”

Mac looked piercingly at the Laird and felt saddened that the once personable young man he had helped to raise had become this bitter, vituperative martinet. The old retainer knew that Lord Simon’s reputation as a hardball career officer was well known both in the ranks and along the corridors of the Ministry of Defense. However, in his own home and with his own staff he had, at first, been a considerate and fair employer, as had his father before him. Over the last five years, however, it had become harder and harder to please the man. His moods were as many and varied as his boyfriends – all of whom were much younger (to the point of impropriety sometimes) and mostly brainless pretty boys, out for what they could get. Mac was reserving judgment about Mr Davin for a while longer. There was something about that particular young man that Mac was beginning to like, albeit grudgingly.

Right now though he was aware that his master was waiting for his answer and Mac wanted to be sure he got it. Right between the eyes.

“I am eighty four years auld, Master Simon,” he began, purposefully using the mode of address he had always used when the Lord had been a boy. “I have worked in this household for nigh on seventy of those years and this is the first time I have been spoken ta with such disrespect.” Mac drew his gray beetling eyebrows together in a forbidding scowl and was gratified to see Simon pale a little under his gaze. “I din’nae have ta be here and if ye wish ta dispense with ma services then I can’nae stop ye. Is that what ye wish?” The old man waited, his cold gray eyes piercing Simon like a stiletto.

“I didn’t say I wanted you to leave,” the Lord mumbled, turning his back on the heated disapproval Mac was throwing his way. “Just that I should think about…” He trailed off as he realized how stupid he had been. Of course he didn’t want Mac to go; he didn’t even know why he’d said it. He was just upset, miserable and confused.

When he’d heard that Jack was on his way from Mexico and that he had left there in some distress, Simon had let himself believe that perhaps this was the reconciliation he had waited for so patiently for the past twenty-five years. There had never been anyone who had come close to replacing Jack in his heart. Every pretty boy he’d bedded had been compared and found wanting. They never passed muster in bed or in their conversation and often the sex was mediocre at best. Simon didn’t like to analyze why that was the case. He had a ‘type’: tall (at least 6’ but preferably 6’2”), dark hair, a tanned complexion and a cheeky smile. They had to be really well endowed and, finally and most importantly, they must not be military.

There were no rules about him having a gay relationship – in this respect British Airmen were much better off than their US counterparts and had been for many years. No, it was more that having been with the best flyer, fighter and strategist of his generation (in Simon’s not so humble opinion) there was no one who could even come close to Jack. So he had filled his life and his bed with actors and models, financiers and lawyers; some of them bright enough, some of them no more than pretty faces. They all had one thing in common though; they all left him feeling hollow and alone. The nearest he had come to a long-term relationship was with Davin and he really couldn’t put his finger on why that was. He hadn’t really cared once he heard that Jack was coming for a visit. If things worked out Davin Garvin would be on the plane to Edinburgh in an instant.

Now everything was falling down around his ears because of the appearance of one Dr. Daniel Jackson. Simon felt his lip curl as he thought about the unbelievably stunning man he had seen sharing Jack’s bed only minutes ago. Jack had waxed lyrical about him when they had met in DC, but Simon had been too star-struck at being in the same room as Jack to take much notice of what Jack had to say.

Simon was used to beautiful men. Their beauty was often couched in artifice and their manner false and fawning. But this man, the man who Jack introduced as his partner, for God’s sake, had a sort of inner luminescence that made him more than just a pretty face. He was àlainn anam; a beautiful soul. It shone from inside him and Simon wasn’t sure he could fight that kind of presence. Jack meant so much to him, though, that he was hell bent on trying. He had guessed Dr. Jackson would follow Jack from Mexico and had put a plan into action that would hopefully alienate him from the colonel and drive Jack safely into Simon’s arms.

Mac stood patiently, watching and waiting, seeing the fleet flow of emotions as they passed over Simon’s features. The old man was nobody’s fool and once he had realized that he had been used to try to hurt Daniel he was determined to show Simon the error of his ways. There was something about Jack’s younger lover that stirred Mac’s soul. There was a gentle strength about him that reminded Mac of his own love, Gordon. He was not about to let Simon push the two Americans apart. Mac wanted more than anything to see Simon settled and happy. McGregor knew that his time was limited and every year was likely to be his last. He certainly would not be able to carry on as general factotum for much longer so he had started to groom Tam for the job. The young man had a lot to learn, but he showed initiative and an ability not to be phased by the unexpected. But for Mac to retire a happy man, his employer would have to be far more stable than he was right now.

“Sit down,” Mac demanded quietly.

Simon’s head shot up, an angry scowl settling on his face. “Excuse me, but who do you think you are, telling me what to do in my own house.”

Mac took a step forward, getting into Simon’s personal space. Mac was only an inch shorter and his bearing was straight even with his advanced years, so they were almost eye to eye. “I’m the man who changed yer nappies, wiped yer shitty arse and snotty nose. I’m the man who held ye when yer mother died and yer fayther was heart sick.” Mac’s anger was apparent in the quiet steel of his voice. “I’m the man who keeps this house running while ye’re awa ta London. I’m the man who loves ye like a fayther and right now I’m the man who’s ashamed of ye.”

Simon blushed as the old man took down all his false bravado and carefully constructed defenses. He sank down into one of the dining chairs and was unable to look away from the forbidding face of his oldest friend.

“I know,” Mac continued relentlessly, “that ye tried ta drive a wedge between Master Jonny and his man. And worse,” Mac spat out, “ye tried ta use me ta do it. Now I din’nae care what ye do with all yon empty-headed pretty boys. They are naything ta me. But Master Danny is something different. The man who gets his love is privileged. Ye already know how special Master Jonny is. Well, I think they were meant ta be tagether. If ye want ta try ta rip them apart, then be my guest. I happen ta believe it’s impossible. Just don’t ask me ta be part of it because I won’t, not even for ye, Master Simon.” The old man shook his head and moved towards the doorway.

“But he’s mine,” Simon whined petulantly. “I was with him first.”

“Wheesht man!” Mac rapped out. “Will ye listen to yersel. Yer a fifty year auld senior officer in the Royal Air Force, not a thirteen year old girl with a crush.” Mac made a noise of disgust and waved a hand in the direction of Simon’s pout. “Ye’ll trip over yon bottom lip if ye don’t watch it.” Mac sighed deeply. Things were much worse than he’d thought. He’d hoped that a stiff talking to would convince Simon to back off and be happy for his friend and the older man’s lover. But it seemed that Simon’s pride and possessiveness with regard to Jack were blinding him to what was glaringly obvious. Jack and Daniel were made for each other. Mac decided he would let nature take its course. Once Simon saw the two men interacting and had time to recognize his folly then he would come around to a sane way of thinking.

“They’ll be down fer their breakfast any minute now. I expect ye ta behave like a gentleman not a love-sick child. Do ye understand?” Mac’s tone was forceful and brooked no argument.

In reply Simon simply shrugged his shoulders and busied himself with the newspapers that were folded up and arranged at the end of the large table. Sighing deeply Mac shook his head and left the room to arrange for breakfast to be served.

As Mac had predicted it was only minutes later that Jack and Daniel arrived in the breakfast room. Simon couldn’t help the rush of want that the sight of Jack engendered and the bite of jealousy that was allied with Daniel. Pasting on a smile that did not reach his eyes he stood to welcome them.

“Jack,” he called, opening his arms for a hug. “God, it’s so good to see you, sweetheart.” Simon didn’t miss the flush of irritation that bloomed on Daniel’s face as he caught the endearment. But de’Vere chose to ignore the frown Jack was throwing his way. “And Dr. Jackson,” he continued after he had hugged Jack soundly, his tone formal and a little less warm. He put out his hand and Daniel reciprocated. The handshake itself was little more than a formality, quickly discarded. Again, Simon refused to see the narrowing of Jack’s eyes.

“Maybe you’d rather we found a hotel room, Simon,” Jack asked, feeling more than a little aggrieved at Simon’s dismissal of his life partner. “Neither of us want to intrude,” he continued pointedly.

“No, NO!” Simon was a little panicked that Jack might actually consider leaving. His plan needed Jack to be at close quarters. Simon had already decided that the stunning Dr. Jackson would be better suited to the equally stunning Mr. Garvin. If he could just get them in the same room for a while he was sure there would be some mutual attraction. Once Jack saw that his ‘special’ man was not so special any more then Simon would be on hand to give him comfort. Once Jack remembered what he was missing there really would be no contest. “Look, let’s sit down and enjoy our breakfast. You can tell me how you come to be here and why you came all the way from Mexico.”

Reluctantly Daniel sat at the table only to see Simon swoop down and catch Jack’s arm, pulling him over to the mantle to show him some framed photographs. Daniel was starting to get irritated with Simon’s blatant flirting and they had only been in the room for a minute or so. Daniel had realized that Simon might be hopeful about rekindling his relationship with Jack, but he also thought once the Lord had seen the depth of the bond between Jack and himself he would back off and realize his chance had passed twenty-five years earlier.

Jack gave Daniel a wry smile over his shoulder as he was once again moved to look at yet another photomontage. He could feel Simon’s hand in the small of his back and he could also feel the twin blue lasers of Daniel’s eyes boring a hole in the back of his head. He needed to nip this in the bud. Simon was a dear friend and a cherished ex, but Daniel was his soul mate, his literal other half, and Simon needed to understand that there was no chance of him coming between them. Jack had made one big mistake in Mexico and he wasn’t about to let anything or anyone else hurt Daniel.

Jack opened his mouth to gently let Simon know he was on the wrong track, but a voice from the doorway interrupted his train of thought.

“So, Simon, are you going to introduce me to your friends?” Davin’s smooth and definitely sexy baritone voice floated across the large room. Daniel turned to look at him and was struck by the sheer physical beauty of the man with his humorous twinkling green eyes, chiseled features and flawless skin. He was tall and well built and his clothes, although very casual, looked as if they were bespoke and fitted like a glove. Daniel felt positively dowdy in his borrowed sweats and sweater; even though they were ‘designer’ and wished he had packed more than just a single change of clothes.

“But of course.” Simon gave Jack a dazzling smile and with an arm around his shoulder drew him in to his side. Daniel felt a rush of possessiveness course though him and he had to work to keep his butt on the chair.

“This handsome bastard is Jack O’Neill. Actually Colonel Jack O’Neill, US Air Force. He’s a very dear friend from way back,” Simon explained proudly. “We spent a beautiful time together.” With that he looked into Jack’s eyes and tried to send him all his love and longing.

This little speech was a step too far for Daniel and he stood abruptly his face set in an irritated scowl. Simon was pleased to see he had got under the younger man’s skin and bit back on a smirk of triumph. “This is his friend, Dr. Jackson, who I know absolutely nothing about,” the Lord continued, his tone giving the impression that whatever there was to know about Daniel would be boring.

“Alright Si, that’s enough,” Jack interjected heatedly. “You know damn well what Daniel does and that he’s my best friend and my life partner.” With a less than gentle twist Jack moved away from Simon and went over to sit on the chair next to Daniel’s. Happy that his lover had not been swayed by Simon, Daniel turned and held out his hand to Davin.

“Hi,” he said, pumping the man’s hand heartily. “You can call me Daniel. And you are Davin, is that right?”

Davin nodded, his eyes flitting over to Simon who was standing at the hearth glaring into the leaping flames. “Yeah,” he drawled. “Davin Garvin. I model – you know, photo shoots, fashion shows, magazine covers.”

Daniel smiled and Davin couldn’t help but grin right back. As far as Davin was concerned Daniel was very attractive, but really not his type. In fact there was only one man for him and right now that particular man was sending heated looks of longing at the silver haired man sitting next to Daniel.

“I’m an archaeologist, anthropologist and linguist.”

“Tell him how many languages you speak, Danny,” Jack interjected.

“Jaa-ack,” Daniel complained, but seeing the look of utter love and pride on Jack’s face, he decided to swallow his self-deprecating tendencies.

“Um…OK…well, at the moment I speak twenty-three languages fluently, both living and dead. I can read several more and have a working knowledge of pictographic communication.”

“So which one is your PhD?” Garvin asked with genuine interest.

Daniel cleared his throat.

“All of them,” Jack crowed as proud as if they were his own achievements.

“Wow!” Davin was truly impressed. “Three Doctorates.”

“Yeah,” Jack continued much to Daniel chagrin, “and all of them by the time he was twenty nine.”

Davin looked awed by Daniel’s achievements. “God, that’s very impressive; makes my work look like nothing. All I do is either stand around all day, posing or walking up and down a catwalk.”

“I’m afraid I’m not doing a very good job of wearing your designer stuff, Davin,” Daniel apologized, looking down at the expensive loungewear covering his body. “I only have two sets of clothes with me and both are being laundered.”

Davin’s grin got wider. “They look great on you.” The model suddenly had an idea. “Oh man, I have tons of clothes here.” He moved to sit opposite Daniel at the breakfast table and Simon almost bit his tongue in frustration. He wanted the two of them sitting together so that he could monopolize Jack. Now he would have to sit next to Davin which was not what he wanted at all.

“You and I are pretty much the same size,” Davin continued, unaware of his boyfriend’s chagrin. “After breakfast you could come and try some stuff on.”

Daniel looked at Jack who shrugged nonchalantly. Actually, the idea of Daniel dressed in designer clothes was quite hot and as much as Simon would have liked him to, Jack didn’t see Davin as a rival for Daniel. Jack knew that despite his devastating good looks Davin was not the man Daniel had spent his morning making love to. Smugly, Jack gloated at his good fortune knowing that Daniel loved him, was in love with him.

“But I couldn’t,” Daniel began. “All those expensive clothes…”

“Are given to me by the designers,” Davin cut in. “They don’t cost me a penny and I could never wear them all.” He smiled and Daniel felt that this man was someone he would love to know as a friend. “You are exactly the right proportions for my stuff and you’re only a little shorter than me, so the leg length won’t be far off. You are so hot you could make a lot of money. People think it’s a young man’s life, but more mature male models can make a lot of money”

When Daniel lifted his brows in surprise the model gave a snort. “It’s part of my job to know how the clothes work and the best way to show them off. So I have a good eye for fit and proportion. I have to look good in anything from a loin cloth to a suit of armor.” At this Daniel laughed out loud and both Davin and Jack joined in. With a happy smile Daniel agreed to visit Davin’s designer closet after breakfast and Jack indicated his intention to tag along.

Simon seethed in the background, unhappy that both Jack and Daniel seemed to be striking up some kind of fledgling friendship with the man who was supposed to be the means to getting Jack away from Daniel. Taking a hold of his resentment and disappointment and pushing it down, Simon decided that he could be patient. He would make sure that Jack stayed for several days so there would be plenty of opportunity to drive a wedge between the lovers.

Simon was so intent on the men in front of him that he didn’t see the tall form of Gordon McGregor watching them from the doorway. It was now obvious to the old man that just talking to the Laird was not going to be enough. Mac decided he would watch for now and bide his time, but if Simon decided to make trouble for Master Jonny and his love, then Mac would not hesitate to stop him.

Il mio amore, la mio adorato. Fare l’amore con me. Dammi il tuo cazzo e mi fanno venire: My love. My adored one. Make love to me. Give me your cock and make me come.

Il mio dolce, Daniel, Mia vita, amore mio. Non lasciarti andare, mai mai…Vuoi sempre fottere per sempre: My sweet, Daniel. My life, my love. Never letting you go, never, never…Want to always fuck you, forever. 

mo giollan bòidheach: My beautiful boy.

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