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Title: The Melody Lingers On
Author: MustInvestigate
Disclaimer: I only own action figures
Rating: hard R
Pairing: Fallout New Vegas, Benny/Swank
Summary: I like the delicious maintainer's summary: "Swank gets a last roll in the hay with Benny."
Note: Holy crap, I actually finished something...
Title reference here.


Benny was a mean drunk. It didn’t happen often (at least when compared to many of their permanently soused brothers in arms), but when the boss bellied up to the bar, all the boys knew to hit the deck. It always started with the bottle of scotch in his desk, then moved on to atomic cocktails in the Ace lounge, and ended with Swank peeling Benny off the barstool when he started heckling the acts more crudely than the rabble.

Back in the penthouse, Swank settled in for a long tirade. All the Chairmen talked about the old days, sometimes, when the boss wasn’t around, but Benny was too good for that. He vented his nostalgia by talking about everything the old days weren’t, as if he didn’t expect his oldest friend to peer right through that smokescreen.

“Bathing,” Benny insisted, stabbing his cigarette toward Swank. “The unlimited hot water alone…took me two full years to get the stink of ass-sweat outta my sinuses.”

Swank shrugged. He’d admit to appreciating that, if Benny asked, which he wouldn’t. His dry, deodorised skin made him feel quieter, stealthier…untrackable. It was different, in another life. When the wind was right, he could tell he was near camp from a half-mile away from the smell of smoke, rancid bighorn fat and the rankness of too many bodies living on a trickle of a spring. It hadn’t made his nose wrinkle, not then, only quickened his feet. It was the smell of home, the smell of Benny waiting in their lodge or, more likely, stirring the shit at the elder’s council campfire.

Not that the boss had been called Benny then, any more than he’d been Swank. They weren’t allowed to remember their old names.

“And clothes – I almost forgot, but, baby, real clothes! You leave ‘em on the floor, and next morning they’re folded up like new outside the door. Hell, maybe they are new.”

Hygiene kick tonight, Swank observed, and stifled a sigh. Benny rarely repeated his soliloquies, and Swank wondered for the hundredth time how much Benny remembered the next morning, and who he thought he was convincing.

Benny stubbed out his cigarette in the sink and lit a new one. He could have used the ember of the old one, but no. He never missed a chance to flash that lighter around.

“Everything but the jacket, boss. I guarantee they skinned a one-of-a-kind beast for that hide.”

Benny’s nostrils flared. “What’s a matter, Swank, pining for the filth?”

Swank snorted and sank back in the overstuffed armchair, crossing his arms. Once, he’d have kicked the legs out from under Benny for a smart remark like that, twisted his arm behind his back and not let him up until he begged. That’s why Benny would have mouthed off. Now he would only turn his gaze to the side, a deliberate insult the other man wouldn’t lower himself to acknowledge.

“I like clean things just fine.”

Benny flicked ash on the carpet.

Swank refused to rise to the bait. “Who’d prefer to die in the mud when they can live high on the Brahmin?”

He found it easier to throw Benny a soft pitch than let the sparring go on half the night. If Benny sobered up too much, he’d start throwing punches instead of words, and seven years of ceilings and soft beds hadn’t blunted his skills with either.

“Some people would.”

Finally, Swank thought. He stood, made a show of tugging his jacket sleeves over his wrists, and stepped toward the door. “I’m going to bed, boss.”

“People are noticing, Swank.”

He stopped, but didn’t face the other man. “Noticing what?”

“Your half-hearted efforts to make time with foxy high-rollers. All the hours you don’t spend in Gomorrah, despite a generous staff discount.”

“Runnin’ the Top’s a lot of work. You’d know that if you ever put your hand to it, boss.”

“But when I’m in the casino, you got nothing but time. You’re in this suite more than me.”

Swank shrugged, abandoning the pretence of argument.

“Don’t you – ” Benny grabbed his arm and physically turned him around, squeezing his shoulders. The forgotten cigarette twisted between two knuckles.

“Get this through your head,” he growled. “When everyone we knew could be counted up on our hands and feet, yeah. Then we had something. But with the pick of the Strip at our doorstep, you’re not even on my top-twenty. And that’s never gonna change.”

Expecting the words didn’t take away any of their sting. “Fuck you, Benny. You’re not the prize you think you are.”

“We both know that ain’t true,” Benny smirked, and stepped back, letting his hands slide down Swank’s arms before he released him. “Keep on as you have been, and so will everyone else. We got a good thing, here, as long as – ”

“Yeah,” Swank interrupted. “The House Rules, I know. I follow every goddamn one of them.”

There weren’t any official rules, actually. Swank just liked that sound of the phrase, particularly when spat out at high velocity. House had put Vegas together like a baker gathering ingredients, and the tribe that became the Chairmen received a box of loose holotapes when they took up residence in the casino, old songs and interviews.

Live up to this exactly, or I’ll find a tribe who can.

“Yeah? You ever seen Lawford leering at Davis’s tight little ass, or Martin and Sinatra canoodling in the coat check?”

“Maybe in the holotapes House kept for himself,” Swank shot back.

A moment passed in silence.

Benny heaved a deep, theatrical sigh. “What are we going to do with you?”

“Time for your patented ‘Vegas in a vial’?” Swank sneered.

“No, no, no.” Benny shook his head. “You’re not a lost cause, just an underperforming employee who needs better…motivation.”

“And you have in mind…?” Swank asked, putting on a weary front. He jammed his trembling hands in his pockets.

Benny leaned on the pool table, crossing his legs at the ankles. “I throw you one last bone, if you use it to get this yen out of your system.”

Swank winced. “You’re all class, you know that?”

“I know I’m a very generous employer.” Benny tilted his hips, emphasising the growing bulge there pushing the pressed pleats into disarray.

Benny’s come-ons had always been lousy, even back in the days they were limited to “bighorn” puns, but never exactly untrue.

Swank told himself he was better than this, and made for the door.

“It’s a limited time offer, open for the next thirty seconds,” Benny called after him. “Take it or leave it.”

His hand hesitated over the doorknob.

“Swank, buddy…”

He flicked the lock, then muted the intercom for extra security. “Get those fucking clothes off, now.”

Benny took his time, undoing his tie with insolent leisure. Swank was down to his socks (and those were staying on – the boss kept his suites downright cold) before Benny was even out of his jacket.

“Can’t do anything for yourself anymore?” Swank groused, impatiently unbuckling his trousers.

“Why else would I keep you around?” Benny’s sneer was almost a grin, but still a desert mile away from the raw lust tinged with amusement Swank remembered. “Put that mouth to better use, will ya?”

Turnabout being fair, Swank dragged his heels. He unzipped Benny’s trousers and let them slide from his hips, revealing the other man’s half-tumescent glory (though House had included crates of crisp white jockeys with the rest of the uniform, not even the boss had ever quite got the hang of underwear). He knelt, but turned his head to nip sharply at one soft inner thigh. Benny yelped and clipped him with a knee.

“That’s not a better use,” he warned.

“Sorry, boss,” Swank snickered, palming Benny’s partial erection. “Guess I need firmer management.”

Benny cleared his throat, eyes narrowing to coin slots. Swank felt a spark of pity; the boss might have the constitution of a dipsomaniacal Brahmin, but that much booze would do a number on anyone’s presentation.

“At least ditch the jacket,” he said, and licked his lips.

For all of Benny’s rhapsodies, 200-year-old polyester was not particularly conducive to maintaining shower freshness. With his eyes closed, Swank could pretend the smell of sweat and alcohol was right. The old ways came back to him quickly; sliding his tongue into the foreskin’s crease, sucking hard enough to pull him toward the back of his throat with a low rumbling hmmmm, languid in-out rhythm for a few strokes, and repeat. He fancied his gums tingled with a secondhand nicotine buzz.

Swank let himself fall into the soothing motion, cupping himself through his pants, but had to admit after several long minutes that Benny was getting no harder. He silently cursed the man as the biggest prick tease to walk the Mojave and revised his impromptu plans.

Maybe it was better this way.

Benny watched him with glazed eyes, forgotten hands clutching his own lapels.

“Off,” Swank growled, tearing the offending jacket from his shoulders and flinging it across the room. He stripped away all traces of civilization, then almost wished he hadn’t. Aside from his face and hands, the other man’s skin was ‘lurk-fin pale under the harsh fluorescents, and he was starting to go soft around the middle. Civilization had sunk in from House’s clothes, branded him.

There was a tube of Gomorrah brand “Hot’N’Heavy” on the bedside table. Swank knew that if he picked at it, he’d find “Vault-Tec All-Purpose Industrial Lubricant” and a list of warnings underneath the bright red letters, so he left the label be.

Forget the bed. That was never how they’d done things. Pool tables weren’t exactly traditional, either, but jostling the eight ball completely off the felt as he pushed himself home was its own satisfaction.

Swank set a slow pace, shivering at the contrast of goosepimple chill and tight heat. Benny’s eyes were closed, maybe finding the thread of memory Swank had lost. He stopped bracing himself against the edge and let himself slide bonelessly forward, cheek dragging to and fro on the red felt as he mumbled, “Yeah…yeah.”

Swank watched the body moving beneath his, pale and swaying like something trapped in one of House’s weird little globes. He reached down to run his fingers through Benny’s hair, much longer and softer than when they’d ran in the Mojave.

Benny stiffened and rolled his head, trying to dislodge Swank’s hand. He glared over his shoulder, contempt flaring between them in an instant.

“Just get on with it, you fuck,” he snarled.

Swank tightened his fingers and dragged Benny upright by his hair, throwing his other arm tight around his neck. Benny squeaked just before his wind was neatly cut off with a hard squeeze.

“You’re the boss,” Swank whispered.

He released Benny’s hair and roughly grabbed his crotch, and yeah, the bastard was hard as a cazador’s stinger now. He pushed forward so Benny’s legs were trapped between his and the pool table and thrust, matching the pace with brutal pulls on the other man’s cock.

Benny’s hands scrabbled at the arm around his neck – but not gaining a grip, purposefully so – and fell away as his entire body twitched, splattering the felt and one unfortunate 6-ball. Swank released his throat and grabbed his hips instead, driving into his body with vengeful force. He wanted it to last, but he wanted it done with more. The spasms of Benny’s gasping coughs pulled him over.

He cleaned them both, resisting the temptation to use that damned jacket for the job, and tumbled Benny into bed. A good fuck had always knocked the man out cold, which was bound to get him in trouble some day. The Omertas alone had many multi-skilled girls on the payroll.

“Hold me, willya?” Benny mumbled into the pillow, but Swank wasn’t tempted. It would ruin everything if he was there in the morning, and anyway, he had an errand to run.

On the way to his own room, Swank stopped by the Ace lounge and picked up a fresh bottle of scotch for the boss’s desk.

Date: 2010-11-17 11:51 pm (UTC)
scarlet_carsons: (Default)
From: [personal profile] scarlet_carsons
Ok, I'm probably one of the flakiest commenters on the internet, but I'm compelled to make terrible fangirl squealy noises at this fic. There are so many details I loved, and it brought up a lot of things that I never thought about during the game - things which now seem really obvious to me, so I could kick myself for not noticing them. Like: the Chairmen (and possibly the other casino tribes) would've had different names before Mr. House turned them into a 24/7 historical reenactment of pre-war Las Vegas. And he'd require them to stay 'in theme'. Creepy.

Live up to this exactly, or I’ll find a tribe who can.

Eeee.

For all of Benny’s rhapsodies, 200-year-old polyester was not particularly conducive to maintaining shower freshness.

That's... another thing I never thought of before. They need to make a Fallout game with Smell-O-Vision. Or not.

“Hold me, willya?”

Oh Mr. Benjamin.

You managed to take two characters who didn't get a whole lot of development and give them more background in a way that made thematic sense. Slightly melancholy rough sex between post-apocalyptic members of the fake Rat Pack is good too.

Date: 2010-11-18 10:11 pm (UTC)
scarlet_carsons: (Default)
From: [personal profile] scarlet_carsons
I had to off House after I realised he had forced actual living people to populate his personal themepark on pain of death or banishment.

That's a really great bit of Fridge Horror. When I first played the game, I just thought Mr. House was your garden variety ruthless capitalist - nasty, sure, but still fairly sane and pragmatic. However, dressing people up like little dolls suggests a whole new world of fucked up solipsistic wrongness. I'm... starting to see the appeal of Yes Man, actually.

Benny: thief, would-be murderer, and…snuggler.

It almost stopped me from killing him. Almost. :(

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