chlorhexidine: (Iggy)
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Cor's words rang through Gladio's head through all the rest of the evening. Every time he looked at Ignis, at the soft way Ignis met his eyes, at the way Ignis positioned himself nearby, always within Gladio's reach, the implications struck like a gong. Holding hands was a mark of love, real bone deep, swallow you whole, stay in bed watching the other one sleep just because you could love. It wasn't sexual, like kissing, and it didn't make demands of another, and it wasn't just words. It was someone, in Ignis's position, someone who had little enough time for themselves, dedicating some of that time to another.

To him.

He'd been such an idiot. Ignis had made time for him in a crazy busy schedule, night after night he'd cleared a space in his day to just be with Gladio, and he'd taken Gladio's hands and looked up at the stars, and there Gladio had been, second guessing whether Ignis would want to come with him. He'd been showing every sign a collar could of not just liking Gladio but loving him, with a self sacrificing intensity he'd been loving him, and Gladio hadn't seen it. He hadn't realised because he'd been too caught up in his own intentions.

Holding hands. It was so chaste, so adorably, ridiculously sweet that it threatened to rot his teeth, but it meant so much more than a kiss. Of course it was something like that which meant so much. Words were cheap, and companions were trained to twist words around a master in order to play them, work them, get what they needed from them without ever having to ask. Collars, as a whole, as a culture were people of action. They could need permission to cut their hair, had to ask for new clothes, had to ask for permission to pursue a relationship with another collar because they were both property and the only crime that could be committed against them was to reduce their value. Of course they said they loved one another with something a freeman wouldn't even see.

Of course Ignis had balked at a wrist leash, he realised. Only spoiled companions, he'd said. Holding hands was a sign of love because their hands symbolised their ability to work, and giving it to another meant you couldn't. Of course Ignis had gone wide eyed at Gladio proposing he lead him around by the hand instead of the neck.

Gladio wondered what Cor would make of that one, if he knew about it. He'd probably give Gladio another one of those looks, like the only reason he wasn't clipping Gladio upside the head was because he was his master's son, and even then, it was still a very close thing.

Ignis had made Iris a hot chocolate for supper. He'd whipped cream for it, and put marshmallows on it, and served it with a slice of cake. Cor and Gladio had declined the offer, sticking with a beer each, and Gladio had watched as Ignis had indulged himself, and Iris stole one of his marshmallows. Then they'd retreated to bed. With Cor having the sofa, it meant retiring a little earlier than usual for Gladio, but he didn't mind doing that at the moment. He wanted the time alone with Ignis.

He sat up in bed with a book while Ignis showered, his attention caught by the sound of running water more than it was the passage in his book. He wouldn't be washing his hair, he knew, just rinsing himself clean of the grime of the day, changing into pyjamas he'd washed fresh that day, and brushing his teeth. You could almost time him.

Gladio put his book down a minute after the water shut off. He sat up a little and waited, smoothing the sheets out idly and realised that was nervous behaviour, and what did he have to be nervous of? Ignis had just been telling him he loved him for weeks, this was just the first night he'd understood the message.

Ignis emerged, wearing his black brushed cotton pyjamas and carrying his glasses. The indoor collar was a thin band of black around his neck. If it wasn't for that, Ignis would look like any free man. He didn't have the vivid, bright coloured hair, or eyes of companion stock. He had pretty green eyes, and tawny hair, and pale skin that had become peppered with a few freckles recently, always there but the summer had made them stand out a little more. He could pass, easily, for free. All you had to do was take the collar away.

But he'd never think like he was free. He didn't view the world the same way Gladio did. The world in here was safe, and the world outside was frightening, and Gladio meant safety for him. He panicked when his routine was disrupted. He grew bored without having Gladio around to serve. Ignis's world was the same and yet so different from the one that Gladio knew.

And then there was this.

Ignis put his glasses on the bedside cabinet and slipped under the covers. They'd never discussed anything like the possession of sides of the bed, and Gladio strongly suspected it would be a nonsense to Ignis because it wasn't his bed, and in his view, never would be. It was Gladio's bed. Ignis simply shared it, a phrase which could as readily imply that Gladio shoved him to the floor after having had his way as the reality, which was that Gladio tucked Ignis into his arms and curled up to him like a child to a favoured teddy while he slept.

Still, Gladio thought of the right side of the bed as Ignis's side, and he let Ignis slip down under the covers before he rolled over and invaded Ignis's space. Normally he'd kiss Ignis. Ignis would slip under the covers and settle down, and Gladio would roll over and kiss him swiftly, and then bury his nose in his hair and sigh, and Ignis would speak, and Gladio would kiss him a little more and tell him he was beautiful and keep kissing until he had a problem. A problem he had yet to resolve with Ignis, and one he had yet to introduce to Ignis because the one and only time he'd tried to touch Ignis below his hips he'd frozen up and pulled away. He wanted to go at Ignis's own pace, so he'd stopped, and apologised, and then Ignis had taken his damn hand again and rolled him over and smothered Gladio in returned kisses that had left Gladio walking on air the following day.

Today he didn't. Today he reached across Ignis's chest and found his hand. Ignis's palm was warm against his own, and he lifted their hands up, watching as he caressed Ignis's hand with his fingers, and then slowly, one by one, pressed his fingertips into the spaces between Ignis's own, and curled his hand around Ignis's own. Then he pulled Ignis's hand towards him, and bent to kiss the back of it, softly.

Ignis was blushing when Gladio lifted his head again, and Gladio met his achingly soft, unguarded expression with a small smile of his own. “You're amazing,” he said, awe in his voice as he brought his other hand up to brush his fingers against Ignis's blushing cheek.

“I've done nothing special,” Ignis replied, a hint of confusion tainting the genuine modesty.

“You are something special,” Gladio replied, squeezing Ignis's hand gently. “I hadn't realised how special until today.”

Ignis was silent for a moment, his eyes on their joined hands, and his cheeks still flaming red. “Did Cor say something?” he asked.

Gladio grinned a little at the question. “Yeah,” he admitted, “he told me off for kissing you.” Looking back on it, Cor had more been telling him off because he hadn't let Ignis know that collars and masters weren't supposed to do that together. Maybe Cor did have a point, he thought. Maybe he would have to reconsider companion training for Ignis too. Just not now. He wanted to get used to Ignis first, to let Ignis get used to him, on their own terms, and in their own ways. If Ignis was going to benefit from learning how to handle other people then that was fine, but for now, he was learning about Gladio, and Gladio was learning about him.

“I'm sorry, sir,” Ignis said, quietly, his eyes turned away. “I shouldn't have said anything.”

“Ignis?” Gladio asked. “Do you know why I kiss you?”

Ignis faltered at the question, making a small noise that hesitated in his throat and failed to become an answer. His cheeks were still bright red when he turned back to Gladio, eyes slightly downcast as he suggested rather than said, “It feels nice?”

Gladio couldn't help a small smile at the answer. It was right, and yet so far from the mark at the same time. He brought Ignis's hand up to his mouth again, kissing the back of it tenderly. He unlaced their fingers and shifted his hold so he could press a lingering kiss into the centre of Ignis's palm, and then another at his wrist, Gladio's nose resting just inside the cuff of Ignis's sleeve.

He looked at Ignis, and his wide eyes and flushed face. He was biting his bottom lip and didn't seem to be breathing, but he was also too rapt to look away, his eyes on his hand, and then Gladio's mouth, and then up to meet Gladio's eyes. Gladio leaned in and pressed a lingering, chaste kiss to Ignis's mouth, until he felt Ignis sigh through his nose and part his lips a little, enough for Gladio to press in and kiss deeper, stealing away what was left of Ignis's breath.

Ignis's eyes remained closed for a moment as Gladio broke away and pulled back enough to look at him. He looked stunning, flushed and breathless, and shy as he opened his eyes once more. Gladio turned to watch as he carefully laced his fingers with Ignis's again, and this time Ignis squeezed his hand first. “I kiss you because you're not just a collar to me,” Gladio said, quietly. “You've got my heart, and I want to give you the rest. That's why I kiss you; because I'm all yours.”

He leaned and pressed another kiss to Ignis's mouth, immediately deepening it at the soft murmur from Ignis. His tongue played against Ignis's, delighting in the way Ignis gave back as good as he got, that he didn't just lie there passively and accept Gladio's affections but worked to return them. Gladio growled happily into Ignis's mouth when he felt fingers sink into his hair, brushing over his scalp, and he rolled a little so he was properly over Ignis.

He pulled back for a moment, taking the second to enjoy the sight of Ignis, breathless with pleasure and joy in his arms. Gladio brought Ignis's hand up once more to kiss at it, loosing his hold so he could kiss Ignis's fingertips in turn, Ignis's breath growing shorter and his cheeks darkening with every press of Gladio's lips. Then he leaned in and captured Ignis's mouth once more.

Ignis kept one hand in his hair, but the other brushed over Gladio's back, following the dip of his spine along its path and then stroking a warm hand over his shoulderblades. Ignis's fingertips dug into the top of his shoulder as Gladio shifted slightly again, pressing his thigh between Ignis's legs and sliding his free hand under Ignis's back.

There was a faint little noise from Ignis as Gladio tugged his night shirt up, exposing just enough skin above Ignis's waistband for him to brush his palm over it and under. Ignis was always warm to the touch, he was like a hot water bottle at night, and Gladio held him thankful that the apartment was cool despite the summer heat. Gladio moved his mouth from Ignis's, planting his lips at the joint of Ignis's jaw, and working down with slow, sucking kisses. He heard Ignis gasping for breath, practice having not been enough yet to teach him how to keep his breath while Gladio kissed him senseless, and Gladio would like it to stay that way.

“Sir.”

Gladio murmured wordlessly, working down to nip at Ignis's collarbone, which barely poked out from below his shirt collar at the base of his throat. He tugged Ignis in closer to himself and felt fingers dig in to his shoulder and rake down his back in a way that was wholly pleasant.

“Sir, please?” The hand that had been on his back landed on his arm and pushed, and Gladio stopped.

He pulled back, leaned up a little. “Sorry,” he said, immediately, “I'm sorry.”

Ignis shook his head, his expression unhappy and ashamed. “You don't have to apologise,” he said, quietly, “it's not you.”

Gladio frowned, bringing his hand up from lurking under Ignis's shirt to rest near his shoulder instead. “What is it?” he asked.

Ignis met his eyes very briefly, and then glanced away again. His blush couldn't turn darker without him passing out from blood loss, but if he could have blushed harder, Gladio knew he would be doing. “It's embarrassing,” he said quietly, “I'm sorry.”

“Whatever it is,” Gladio began, concern taking over from his ardour, “you can tell me.”

Ignis squirmed, shuffling down a little against the pillow and this time he didn't make an attempt to meet Gladio's eyes. “When you kiss me like that,” he whispered, “it,” he began, and faltered, and tried again, “I get--”

Ignis frowned and turned his head down, and Gladio frowned at him. “You get?” he asked, waiting for Ignis to finish.

“Aroused,” Ignis murmured, eventually, looking deeply unhappy about it.

Gladio stared at him for a moment, for a long, beautiful moment, and then his face broke into a wide and devilish grin. He leaned in again and nuzzled Ignis happily, chuckling against Ignis's neck as he pressed another kiss there. “Ignis?” he called for his attention, “that's supposed to happen.” Cor was right, Gladio thought, Ignis really didn't know what kissing was all about. Affection, yes, but he clearly hadn't realised the depth or type of affection involved.

“But you don't,” Ignis protested, sounding strained and unhappy. Gladio rolled his hips down to press against Ignis's thigh, letting him feel Gladio's own problem. “Oh.” It was a tiny little noise, and it was followed by a swallow.

Gladio kept his face tucked in against Ignis's neck. “We don't have to do anything you're not ready for,” he said. Just because Ignis's body wanted it didn't mean Ignis himself was ready for it. Gladio knew that. “If you want me to stop for whatever reason, just say so. Even if you said yes a minute ago, okay, you can change your mind at any time. I want to do something, if you'll let me?”

Ignis still looked thrown by this turn of events, and Gladio looked up at him and the wary frown he wore when he asked, “What do you want to do?”

Gladio smirked a little, the memory of his scolding from Cor coming back for a moment before he answered, “I want to put my mouth on you.”

Ignis stared, his lips parting briefly and then closing again as he obviously struggled to give a response. “Masters aren't supposed to--”

“You're not just a collar to me,” Gladio repeated, softly, but firmly. “This has got nothing to do with me being your master, of you being my collar. I want to do this because you're you, and I'm me, and I want to put my mouth on every single inch of you, everyone else be damned.” Ignis looked at him, clearly nervous of the idea, and Gladio smiled at him. “I promise,” he said, “if you're not enjoying it, I'll stop.”

Ignis sighed, a tiny little noise of defeat, and Gladio pressed in and kissed him sweetly. He drew it out, let it last, let Ignis forget about the embarrassment of a moment ago and lose himself in the press and slide of Gladio's tongue against his, and the brush of Gladio's lips over his, and the scratch of Gladio's beard against his chin. Gladio felt Ignis relax by degrees under him, and this time when Gladio slid his hand under Ignis's back and tugged him close, Ignis let him do it.

Ignis's hand found his waist, brushing up the side of his body as Gladio murmured happily into the kiss, and fingers wound through his hair, fingertips toying idly over his scalp. Gladio pulled away once he was sure Ignis had settled, and moved his hands so he could unbutton Ignis's shirt. There were four buttons on it, and they came undone easily, allowing Gladio to push it out of the way and expose Ignis's chest and stomach.

He'd never seen him half stripped before. Ignis went from a state of fully clothed in his daywear to fully clothed in his nightwear out of Gladio's view. His skin was pale, and warm, and he was slender. Gladio had expected him to be skinny, because he looked it under the clothes he wore, but instead he was just slender. With a bit of the right kind of exercise, you'd be able to pick out the muscles beneath his skin. A lifetime of housework had certainly not left him flabby, that was for sure.

Gladio murmured, running a hand from Ignis's hip up to his shoulder before he bent down to kiss at his chest, and then slowly work his way lower. Ignis murmured quietly above him, keeping one hand in his hair, and Gladio worked his mouth down to Ignis's last rib before he jerked and yelped.

Gladio looked up to see Ignis looking wide eyed at him. “What?”

“That tickles,” Ignis replied, his eyes still wide in that unmistakeable expression of someone in a vulnerable position whose partner has just discovered a critical weakness.

Gladio grinned like a shark. “What, this?” he asked, and bent down to press a fluttery kiss to Ignis's stomach. His reward was another jerk of Ignis's body, and Gladio held him in place as he squirmed. “So it does.” He flicked his tongue along Ignis's midline, letting the short clipped hair of his beard touch Ignis's skin for good measure.

Ignis gave another yelp, louder this time, and Gladio bent down again to trace the bristles of his beard over Ignis's sensitive stomach in a teasing back and forth motion. “Stop!” Ignis cried, fighting against laughter and desperation. Gladio only grinned back up at him. “Cor is in the next room,” he hissed.

Gladio considered this for a moment, and wondered what sort of lecture he'd get for making Ignis squeal with laughter due to being tickled. “Don't care,” he replied, leaning down to press another gentle kiss to Ignis's stomach and make him twitch and squirm again.

“Your sister is in the other,” Ignis protested, the words coming out muffled as he clamped a hand over his mouth to stop himself crying out again.

Gladio laughed again, and pulled away, rising back up so he was face to face with Ignis once more. “Fine,” he conceded, “but I'm going to remember this.” He peeled Ignis's hand away from his mouth and bent down to press a deep kiss to his mouth once more. “You sound good when you laugh,” he purred, pulling away briefly to adjust his position, and then bending down again to kiss Ignis with every ounce of affection he could muster before Ignis could reply.

He kept kissing Ignis as he worked his fingers into Ignis's waistband. He could feel Ignis's nerves trying to creep back in, so he stilled, keeping his tongue and his mouth busy occupying Ignis's mind before he started to ease his pyjamas down. Ignis went tense under him again for a moment, and Gladio slowed, whispering, “Just say,” against Ignis's mouth.

He felt Ignis swallow, and then tilt his head to press his mouth against Gladio's and play his own tongue into Gladio's mouth. Gladio murmured happily, accepting the returned interests, and pushed Ignis's pyjama pants down as far as he could reach. Then he broke the kiss, and kept his eyes locked with Ignis's as he moved down until he was between his legs.

Ignis's erection was not bad, Gladio thought. He wasn't built on the same scale as Gladio himself, of course, but if he was, Gladio would probably have second thoughts about doing this. He'd never done this to anyone else before, only received it from certain girlfriends. He had a pretty good idea of what had felt good for him, and it would probably feel good for Ignis too. Men, he knew, tended to be simple creatures.

He watched Ignis as he stroked his cock with his fingers. The skin was warm, and delicately soft. Ignis took a breath, but nothing more, and Gladio curled his hand gently around Ignis's length and gave him a few gentle strokes. Ignis settled back a little into the pillows, his cheeks tinged pink, but his eyes fixed on the display.

With Ignis's attention firmly on him, Gladio shifted a bent down. He opened his mouth to press the flat on his tongue against the head of Ignis's cock, and heard him take a gasp as Gladio licked it firmly. He held Ignis's cock in place with one hand as he licked at the head again, and then moved down to press an open mouth kiss to the underside. He ran his mouth slowly down in a series of languid, wet kisses against the hot flesh of Ignis's cock, hearing Ignis's unsteady inhales and quiet restrained murmurs in response.

He pressed the broad of his tongue against Ignis's cock and drew up, slowly and firmly, stroking his hand up as he did so that Ignis gasped, and then Gladio took just the head of Ignis's cock into his mouth and sucked.

The noise Ignis made was indecent. Gladio wished he could record it and listen to it over and over. He was going to be remembering that one in his lurid dreams, and idle fantasies he knew. He gave another suck, although the next noise wasn't quite as good, and then he moved down to take as much of Ignis into his mouth as he could. He didn't want to go too far; choking or gagging would spoil the effect, and he didn't want Ignis to even think about stopping this for Gladio's own comfort.

He sucked Ignis's cock into his mouth, and then sucked harder as he drew back up, almost pulling him out completely. Gladio worked his tongue against the tip, firm edge of the muscle playing against the slit briefly before he sucked Ignis back into his mouth again and stroked his hand down the length of Ignis's cock too. Ignis gave a gasp, his hips shifting slightly as his restraint failed him, and Gladio would have grinned if his mouth wasn't occupied.

He worked like that for a while, stroking with his hand what he daren't try to take into his mouth, sucking as hard as he comfortably could. It made his jaw ache, and his position wasn't the most comfortable, but the noises from Ignis, the increasingly heavy gasps and quiet moans were worth it. Next time, and there was definitely going to be a next time, he was going to have Ignis's legs up over his shoulders while Gladio was on his knees on the floor.

Ignis's fingers brushed against his hair as he sucked him in again. “Sir,” he said, his voice a groan, and Gladio murmured low in his throat in answer. It earned him another, sharper gasp that was cut off as Gladio drew back up again. A brief upwards glance told him that Ignis had clamped a hand over his mouth once more, but Gladio didn't stop to make him pull it away, no matter how much he liked the noises. If Ignis wanted to keep himself quiet, he'd let him. For now, anyway. When Cor wasn't around would be another matter.

“Master,” Ignis stuttered, a few moments later, “I'm--”

Gladio sank down to take Ignis into his mouth again, keeping his lips firm around Ignis's cock as he drew back to the very tip, and then sank down again once more. “Gladio!”

Ignis came, and Gladio pulled back enough to swallow without gagging. He didn't want to get a shot in the face either, if only because Ignis would be mortified, and that kind of thing was definitely going to be something masters didn't let collars do, and Gladio didn't want to spoil the moment. Ignis came with a hand over his mouth, his hips rising slightly off the bed, and Gladio sucked until he relaxed back again, spent.

Then Gladio swallowed, wiping his mouth indelicately with his hand as he sat up. Ignis was out of breath, flushed, with his eyes closed. He made for a truly stunning sight. “You've never said my name before,” he said, softly, as he leaned over Ignis to take in the view.

Ignis opened his eyes to look at him, and looked chastised. “I'm sorry, sir, I wasn't,” he faltered, and then murmured, “coherent.”

Gladio grinned down at him, resting one hand on either side of Ignis's shoulders. “Glad you enjoyed it,” he replied.

Ignis looked up at him, his smile small and shy. “It felt,” he began, haltingly, “better than anything I'd imagined.” Gladio's grin turned predatory at the admission. “Do you want me to do that for you?” he asked.

Gladio shook his head. “Nah,” he answered. “Some other time, maybe, whenever you're ready. Not now.”

Ignis reached a hand up to Gladio's chest and slid it up to his shoulder, offering him a gentle smile. “I want to do something,” he replied.

Gladio was struck by how ridiculously lucky he was with Ignis. He could have had a companion. He could have had some brightly coloured pretty thing that had been taught to suck cock like a vacuum cleaner, some master of the art of conversation, with stunning looks that had taken generations of breeding to achieve. Instead he had Ignis. Ignis and his green eyes, and tawny hair, and slender frame, Ignis who held his hand because he loved Gladio and wanted to spend time with him even though he didn't know the first thing about being a companion. Ignis, who shyly insisted he wanted to return the favour after being told he didn't have to.

He could have had a companion, but he'd have never had this achingly sweet, bone deep, quietly ferocious love from a companion, and he wouldn't have felt it for them.

He leant down and pressed his mouth to Ignis's, taking him into a deep kiss while he settled his weight on top of him and wrapped his arms around him. He put the force of every I love you into the kiss, holding Ignis tight to himself, and then he broke away, and rolled over so that Ignis landed atop him, bare hips pressing delightfully against Gladio's lingering erection.

Ignis steadied himself with one hand at either side of Gladio's shoulders, and his spread his legs, pressing his knees into the bed astride Gladio's hips.

“Just kiss me?” Gladio asked, looking up at Ignis with a soft smile, and softer eyes.

Ignis looked down at him and smiled, giving a short, brief nod before he brought one hand up to Gladio's cheek and bent down to kiss him. Gladio relaxed back, letting Ignis lead, letting Ignis take. Ignis's tongue pressed into his mouth sweetly, and danced with his own tongue rather than battled. Fingers stroked into the hair at the side of Gladio's head, and then pulled away, rested on his shoulder, and then trailed down to find his hand.
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