A Life not Spent with You

BY : Rin-chan
Category: DarkFic > Slash - Male/Male
Dragon prints: 4294
Disclaimer: Any resemblance to any persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental - this is a work of fiction.

 

TRIGGER WARNING: This story contains details of sexual assault that can be upsetting to some readers! Thank you for reading!

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A sudden movement pried him from sleep. Ivan blearily opened his eyes and for a flash of a second couldn't figure out why he was looking up at an unfamiliar ceiling. Damien jerked against him again, one of his arms still flung across his chest. The memories of the long night before, of waking periodically to calm his lover with his hands and soothe him back to sleep, came rushing back to him. Blinking away his tiredness, Ivan warily swept a hand across the younger's shoulder. Damien cringed away from his touch, “N-no, please don't!” His frightened stammer was heartbreaking to hear as it was during the night. Stroking his fingers gently along his shoulder again, the blond held his breath, not wanting to hear more of his lover's scared pleas. It worked this time as the slighter man's breathing evened out as he cuddled closer against him with a whimper.

 “Shhh, its only a dream, darling. I'm right here with you.” Turning his head to the side just a little, Ivan pressed a light kiss atop his lover's crown and murmured reassurances until his sleep became peaceful again. What a wretched night... Turning his face so it was staring up at the ceiling, the blond stifled a yawn with his free hand and wiped at his eyes. He'd lost track of the times he'd woken to hear Damien trapped in a nightmare. A couple of the times the younger jolted awake and in a near panic. Oh the crying and apologies... Closing his eyes, Ivan winced slightly at the remembered frustration of trying to convince Damien that he wasn't being a nuisance; it'd taken a couple deep breaths to reign in his anger at the stranger man who'd caused this. The last thing Damien needs is to think I'm angry with him...

  In response to this thought, Ivan pressed another kiss upon the younger's head, smiling briefly as long dark locks tickled his face. His smile faded as he began to wonder how the day would go. It was Saturday, and turning his head to the right to see the digital clock, 9:24AM. Having never known how police go about processing a crime scene, Ivan wasn't sure if they could go back to their apartment, or if it would take days. Maybe we have to go to the hospital again or go to the police station...? Damien would definitely have to talk to his manager for some time off or maybe even paid vacation.

 With some effort, Ivan slowed his thinking, of making plans as he always did. Frustration seeped back into his heart as he reminded himself that it was up to Damien on what he wanted to do. He was the one who needed all the control he could get, and make decisions on his own. As much as I want to I can't save him from everything my job is to support him as best as I can...God maybe he won't ever be able to step foot in our apartment again...I probably wouldn't if it happened to me... As he mused, Damien began to stir.

 The first thing he was aware of was warmth. Curling closer, he knew the curve of Ivan's arm that loosely draped around his waist. The perfect spot where his cheek fit on the older man's chest. His face felt stiff though, sore, drawing him from sleep into waking. With a start, Damien remembered why his cheek, his body hurt. A hiss escaped him as a sharp pain coursed through his lower body. Trying to sit up despite his body's protests, he fought not to shake at Ivan being so close and touching him. Hot embarrassment warmed him uncomfortably from a vague memory of crying and apologizing in the night. His lover had drawn his arm away from holding him the second he tried to sit up,

“ Hey, morning, luv.” Was all he said, smiling faintly. He looks so tired... The older man's face looked puffy from sleep, dark shadows under his eyes. Damien finally half wriggled himself into an awkward sitting position, guilt and disgust at himself growing as Ivan fought a yawn.

  “I, uh, sorry about waking you last night. I can't seem to-” His sore throat made him break off his sentence, wince at the dull ache. Shyly, Damien glanced at his lover's face, tried to read any hint of negative emotions and was slightly happy to see no sign. God my head feels so ugly... There was a constant, stirring whirlpool of doubts and fears – the sheer amount drained the minute happiness he felt. Last night seemed to eclipse everything, it was debilitating. He'd spent less than a minute awake and already he was tired of thinking and fretting. As he met Ivan's eyes, he managed to dredge up a small smile from somewhere. “I mean...Thank you...” His boyfriend smiled back, a tiny crease under his eyes crinkling in that way he loved. Looking away, down at the blankets, he fought the urge to kiss him good morning as he always did. Despite showering before bed, he still felt covered in filth. And kissing lead to things he couldn't bear, couldn't fathom ever enjoying again.

  “And thank you, I'm glad I could be here. I'd have understood if you wanted to sleep alone.” Stretching his legs out, Ivan twisted to the side away from the other and let out a short sigh. His stiff muscles were easing, his back a little less tense. Their comforter pad on their bed back home was beyond superior to this mattress. The younger man was staring down at the covers, his face pensive and lost. Sitting up, slowly as not to startle him, the blond rolled his neck once and licked his dry lips. “Hey...” Blue eyes met his, wavered before dropping back to the blankets. Concerned, Ivan tilted his head to the side in hopes to catch his gaze again.

 “ I thought I'd feel better, I feel worse though.” Damien meant to say more but it seemed impossible to explain. To him, it felt the world should have stopped because his world had stopped, was forced to stop. His body ached, the torn part of him throbbing slightly with every heartbeat, a constant reminder. Snippets of last night's events ran through his mind - why didn't I its my fault we're even here in this unfamiliar room. His stomach growled, but wondering what to do about breakfast made his stomach churn at the thought of leaving the room. The idea of going outside or being amongst people seemed impossible. Damien blinked, “Oh fuck, I don't know what to do about work. I can't-”

 The younger halted, a hand coming up to his throat. Ivan fought to keep his hands to himself as he watched Damien half cough with a grimace of pain. “I can't tell them, I-I don' want anyone to know.” His lover looked to him sharply, his face suddenly pale. “Did you tell any of our friends? B-Bailey?” Surprised that his best friend was singled out, Ivan offered his hand, pleased his lover took it, gripped it to be exact. “I haven't, and I won't. Whatever you wish to tell others, its your decision. I promise I'll respect your privacy.” His dearest nodded, face tinged with pink as he wriggled closer, leaning into his torso. Wrapping an arm around him, Ivan gave him a hug, kissed his temple. His boyfriend remained at his side, even brought up an arm to hold him as well. A minute passed by, then another.

 “ I don't think, do you remember if that doctor wanted me to go back today?” Damien inwardly cringed at his fragile voice, no doubt making Ivan want to protect and coddle him. If you look like a girl you should act like one! A dagger pieced his heart - perhaps Ivan thought him less of a man now? Everywhere, in movies and television shows, a man is a man and never a play toy. Pinned to the floor and made helpless and begging. The pleading words he'd uttered in a choking whisper ran through his head; Damien hid his face in Ivan's chest and gritted his teeth as tears prickled in his eyes. That can't be me saying that. Although he craved it, he still jumped slightly as Ivan's other arm wrapped around him, held him loosely. “Not that I recall, though he did give you a couple week's antibiotics for the...tearing.”

 Where the younger's face was pressed against his chest grew damp. Ivan began to draw away, froze as the slight man's arm tightened around him, trembling like the rest of him. Relenting, he remained where he was, brushed Damien's cloth-covered shoulder his thumb. The younger man didn't sob, only cried silently, which was somehow worse. Everything, Ivan would have given everything he had to somehow rewind the last twenty hours. Grappling with what were surely unhelpful sentiments, he kept his mouth shut and simply was there.

 Being held eased some of the despair, and after a while of drifting in the calm security, Damien this time couldn't ignore his growling stomach. I can't just sit here in bed the rest of my life... The day didn't seem so bleak, at realizing that one thought was just like him, not some weeping wailer he'd suddenly become. Doesn't what happened merit some crying? Turning his head, he pressed a kiss to the fine line of Ivan's collarbone. The older man grew still, his tracing thumb on his shoulder paused. A shiver of pleasure tingled in his heart at being able to give sweet gestures still. Maybe he doesn't want me to kiss him like that anymore...  Not knowing was agonizing; far too confused now, Damien regretfully shuffled from his arms and suggested they start moving about.

                                                                                                                                                         *

The hotel room had a coffee machine, which made the day seem a little more manageable. After starting the machine, Damien let out his breath in a quiet sigh and rummaged through the backpack Ivan had brought from home. Home...I wonder if the police are done with it... As he pulled out a clean t-shirt, his jaw clenched in an attempt to stop the memories. Every thought seemed to lead to being attacked, each word he could think of. Glancing at the bathroom door where Ivan was doing his ablutions, Damien carefully tugged his shirt off and quickly slipped on the clean one. His shoulder ached at the movement, brought a wince to his face. Slowly, he reached up and carefully sought for the the bite wound with his fingertips, found the upper crescent of where he'd been marked. What if it scars Ivan will have to see it every time my shirts off...

 While coming out of the bathroom, Ivan saw Damien tracing the circle on his shoulder. Letting his feet scrap slightly on the carpet, he noted how fast the younger dropped his hand, made himself look busy rifling through the backpack. Folding his sleeping shirt, the blond gave his boyfriend a wide berth as he set his laundry down on the coffee table. “I'm kinda nervous about leaving the, uh, room...” Damien looked away, his face reddening. “I'm not going to turn into a hermit or anything I just...I don't know what to do, about work or going back to the apartment, I can't seem to make up my mind I just-” He shrugged tiredly, disappointment ripe on his features. Dark shadows under his eyes blended with the one deep bruise on his cheek. Pausing from his folding, Ivan glanced at Damien, clenched his jaw at how vivid the injuries were on his lover's pale face. The younger's gaze faltered, a hurt expression crossing his face. Ivan immediately relaxed, hadn't noticed his shoulders were tight with anger.

  “ No, hey, I'm not angry with you.” The older's whole demeanour changed as he took a step closer. Damien fought not to to show the twinge of anxiety – part of him craved to be touched and another loathed it. “Its just hard to, know someone's hurt you so badly. I'm-” His lover grappled at what to say, his eyes bright with emotion, “I'm angry at him. God, I'm so furious, seeing all those-” He gestured to his own cheek, fingers forming a fist. Stepping back, nervous at the sudden change in atmosphere, Damien felt panic start to flood his system. All his life, he'd been good at gauging people's moods; unhelpfully, his attack had him constantly sensing any hint of threats. He couldn't look away as Ivan gave off frightening waves of rage, an unrelenting force, and again he was helpless against it. Breath coming fast, the younger felt faint, -calm down! Not angry with me he doesn't blame me! His attempts to calm his agitated state nearly worked until Ivan let out a sudden shout of anger.

  A sharp whimper broke through his dark thoughts, the swelling pit of fury that had clouded everything around him. Ivan blinked, appalled that he'd lost control of his emotions. The black haze his head was in cleared instantly as his eyes fell on his lover's warding stance. Disgust rose within him, threatened to choke him at seeing the younger shake slightly, his eyes wide and fearful. Shit! How could I be so fucking stupid!? “Oh hell, sweetheart I didn't, I'm not-” Without thinking, he stepped forward, made to sweep him in a reassuring embrace. Damien stumbled back, bumping into the dresser behind him, made the television resting on it teeter violently. “I-I'm sorry, puh-please don't get mad, I tried so hard to...” Tears sprang to his blue eyes, a trembling hand darted up to hide the dark bruise under one eye. The evidence that the younger mistook for a mark of his fault. With shaky breaths, the slighter man cupped his hurt cheek with both hands and began to sob.

 “ Oh no, no, Damien, thats not what I meant!” Hating himself, remorse bitter on his tongue, Ivan surged forwards, reminded himself at that quarter second not to touch him without asking.  It shred his heart to see the total misery plaguing the younger, even more so at causing him to cry and apologize. Unable to stop himself, he carefully touched his lover's shoulder; Damien cringed and halfheartedly shrugged his offending hand away. “-couldn't stop him, I tried but he p-punched me so hard I fell I-I couldn't move only feel him spin me over, I-I should have yelled or anything.” Eyes growing moist, Ivan shook his own head, ghosted his hands along the younger's shoulders, tilted his head to catch his lover's faraway gaze. “No, shh, its not your fault, luv, look at me, Dami!” Whispering, he tenderly brushed the slighter man's damp cheek with the back of his fingers, saw those tearing blue eyes glance at him miserably.

  A sudden ringing made him jump, jarring his semblance of control. Its work, its my boss, its one of my friends or family oh my god I can't ever tell them! The enormity of possibilities weighed heavy on his soul; Damien fought hard not to cry again as Ivan fumbled around in his backpack. “Whoever it is can wait, I'm so sorry I shouted, I wasn't thinking!” Black phone in hand, Ivan glanced at the screen and faltered. Not wanting to hear more apologies, Damien quickly dug around in the bag for the white paper bag he vaguely remembered receiving at the hospital, and fled to the bathroom. “Just answer it, I'll be fine!”

  Cringing at the door slamming, Ivan bit his lip, watched his friend's photo icon jiggle slightly at each ring. I totally forgot should I just let it ring? Remorse tasted bitter on his tongue at his lack of self-control. Bailey's call finally went to voice mail and the connection lost. Blindly stepping back, Ivan slowly waited for his legs to brush the bed's edge and sat down. He said he was hit so hard he was dazed... Was that how it happened? A hand shakily rose to his mouth, clamped over it as he breathed in sharply through his nose. Was he aware of being flipped over and unable to move or react? The horror of it made him feel nauseous. His phone began to ring again – irritated, Ivan flipped it open and was ready to take out his frustration to his early-bird friend. Before he managed to growl out a snide remark, Bailey's concerned voice made him blink and listen.

“Hello? Ivan, are you and Damien okay?” Ivan barely got out a hesitant yes before the other barrelled into a hasty explanation. “I came by your apartment building for, you know, to pick you up for tennis and I ran into your landlord at the front door! He said something happened last night and the police were at your place all night? Are you and Dami alright?” Mind drawing a blank, he glanced at the closed bathroom door and swallowed in hopes to moisten his drying throat. “Bailey, calm down. I-” Ivan paused, unsure what he was going to say. Dami made it clear he didn't want anyone to know... “We're okay, something came up so I can't play today...I'll call you later?” He finished lamely, fervently wishing to be off the phone.

                                                                                                                                                           *

 It was hard to read the antibiotic instructions with tears blurring his vision. As much as he tried, Damien couldn't stop them from sliding down his cheeks. A constant tremor rippled through his stomach as he tried to calm down. The quivering was uncomfortable, and as much as he wished to sit down, the certain stab of pain kept him standing and alone in the small bathroom. Over and over he agonized about what he said exactly in his fear, the few brief seconds where Ivan's shout rattled him deeply. Angrily wiping away the damp trails from his one unhurt cheek, he blackly glanced at himself in the mirror, the sick feeling in his stomach growing. Ivan hates seeing this...All this proof I can't hide the fact I'm used goods... Unable to bear his reflection any longer, he planted his palms on the counter top and bowed his head, tried to turn around his thoughts.

 A shy knocking at the door made his heartbeat jump a little, his body tense. Closing his eyes, the slight man tentatively dried his face, careful of his swollen bruise. “I'm here, I didn't mean to panic or freak out...” His body felt hot, made him worry again about infection, sent another weary jolt of fear through him. Hopelessness swelled, made his throat tighten with emotion. Torn between wanting to hide from his lover and hide in his arms, Damien took a deep shuddering breath and opened the door. Suddenly exhausted, he only scanned the older man's face for any hint of anger before tiredly embracing him.

 All the things Ivan intended to say drained from him as he instantly folded arms around the younger, keeping his hold loose. Pointless sentiments trembled on his lips – instead, he kissed the slighter man's forehead. “I can't focus, I keep assuming the worst...” Voice muffled slightly, Damien suddenly held on tighter. “M-my head feels so ugly, I know you're not angry with me.” The harsh whisper brought a sting of sorrow deep in his chest, it felt strange to feel so much sadness. Smoothing the tousled long locks strewn over the younger's shoulders, Ivan rested his cheek atop his crown, “I'm definitely not, and I definitely won't lose my temper like that again, it just came out.”

 Gently caged in his lover's arms, Damien felt tension drain slowly from his body. Sensing the older's disappointment still, he pressed a reassuring kiss to his collarbone after a quick turn of his head. A shock ran through him in his surprise at his own boldness. Maybe it wasn't such a big deal if I can still do this... His lover's breathing halted for a moment, made him flush with nervousness. Resting his cheek against Ivan's chest again, wanting to hide his reddening face, Damien blinked as he tried to form a simple sentence that seemed impossible to say. It poisoned him, the weight of it leaking a great deal of pain and shame that would lessen greatly if shared. I can't its too hard to even think of let alone say it out loud what will he think of me I couldn't stop it...

 The half-smile at the sweet, affectionate gesture slid into a frown as Damien started to tremble again. He didn't seem to realize he was doing it, his arms around him tightening. The atmosphere grew heavy again, unspoken words lazily floating in the air, gathering strength. “I-Ivan I need to-” Holding his breath, Ivan waited as the pause grew longer; he wanted to ask so badly what was so difficult to say. Whatever it was seemed vital, something important to get out, like the location of a trap or something equally unpleasant. “Damien its okay, whatever you need, its okay.” Drawing out of their warm embrace, Ivan noted how quickly the younger looked down at the floor, like his eyes were filled with lead. Tenderly, he slowly touched his sweetheart's unhurt cheek and brushed his thumb across the soft skin. To his surprise, Damien gave the barest of cringes.

 The words died in his throat at the loving touch, what shimmer of pleasure it gave. A shiver ran through him as his stomach fluttered, his nerves singed almost painfully like fire in response. Shaking his head, the younger hugged himself, hating his lack of courage. “I need to eat before taking the antibiotics...B-but I don't really want to leave the room.” Glancing at the older man, heartened and curious at his mirth-filled eyes, Damien tilted his head in a silent question.

“Thats why we're in a hotel - when was the last time we ordered room service?”

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The concierge was happy to accommodate their request and sent up two continental breakfasts. After eating and coffee, Damien called his manager, explaining that their apartment had been broken into and vandalized. Ivan heard the concern in the woman's voice as she asked if he was alright and whether he had a safe place to stay. Sitting on the bed they'd slept on, he noticed how uncomfortable Damien was as he tentatively explained what a shock the intrusion was and asked for some time off. The affirmative chirrups and reassurances smoothed some of the clouds on the younger's face, and after thanking her, he placed the phone back in its cradle with a faint sigh.

 “ She said I could have a week off, paid. I haven't used any vacation time in a couple years anyway.” Voice quiet, Damien ran a hand through his hair, pushing it away from his face. A week...What will happen in a week? We will be back home?  Doubting they'd stay a week in this hotel, he pictured their living room, the black rug on the cream carpet, the red sofas. A rush of fear as he remembered lying face down, staring at the dark fabric. “Thats great, your boss seemed pretty understanding.” Glancing from the blankets he was staring down at, to his boyfriend, Damien nodded. “Her sister apparently had a break-in a few months ago, she remembered how upset her sister was...” Taking the one step to the bed, he steeled himself and lifted one leg and carefully rolled onto the mattress. Being close to the older man sent a shiver through him, as if they were magnets reacting. Shyly, he lay on his side and offered his hand.

 Green eyes regarded the uncertain expression on the younger man's face, vulnerability there in his pensive features. Smiling softly, Ivan took his hand, longed to kiss his fingers. “May I lie down too?” After a tired nod of approval, he slowly positioned himself on his side, giving the slighter man some space while still holding his hand. Automatically, his lover wriggled closer, intent on being held. Happily, Ivan quickly rolled on his back, lifted his arm as the younger snuggled into his side, cheek docking on his chest. Lightly resting his arm around him, he closed his tired eyes, listened as their heartbeats blended. Before he mentioned eating he was on the verge of telling me something... The clouded atmosphere then was stifling, whatever it was, it was certainly about the attack. The rape. What a terrible hateful word...

 To try to comprehend everything that one word and all it entailed was painful. Smoothing his hand along his lover's back, mindful of the injuries underneath his shirt, Ivan kissed his shoulder. “I feel better after eating, I saw a sign in the lobby for a garden or courtyard on the main floor...Maybe after sleeping a bit, we can go?” Fighting a yawn, Ivan gently squeezed a hug, inwardly cheering. “For sure, luv, its up to you.” His lover settled closer; Ivan could feel his smile against his chest.

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