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No beta-ing. Language. Even sex. Not mine, no money. More's the pity.
Feedback always welcome.

Family Reunion 9/?

by Rosybug


Chris woke up alone the day after Christmas. He knew he was alone even before he got out of bed. Elliot's house had that unoccupied feeling. Everything was way too quiet and most of the lights were off. But mainly he just knew in a way he couldn't explain that Elliot wasn't home and had been gone for some time.

Maybe it was a twin thing. Very gradually over the past six months he was starting to find that his long-dormant "twin senses" were reviving. Maybe it was just that he was a good reader of human nature and Elliot was a lot like him or maybe it was that he really did have a bond with his brother that transcended logic or common sense. A tiny part of Chris wanted to believe the latter. He kept trying to stamp that out.

He got out of bed and pulled on the bath robe that Elliot had given him when he was in hospital. He had brought it with him to Elliot's house in case Kathy or the kids were going to be around. He hadn't bargained on the weather being so fucking freezing. His apartment had a great heating system, but in comparison to Elliot's place, even Oz had been well heated. He'd have to do something about the central heating sooner or later ...

He walked out onto the landing and looked down into the rooms below. As far as he could see no one was down there. Elliot's bedroom was too quiet too. He went downstairs, wondering if Elliot had left a note. The kids had said something about skating on an outdoor rink when he'd mentioned the Miss Sally ice show to rile Elliot during Christmas dinner. Maybe Elliot had taken them there. Without him.

There was no note. Elliot could have gone out to get milk or the paper. But he hadn't. He was off doing something else, Chris knew. He put some coffee in the coffee machine and sat down at Elliot's kitchen table while he waited for it to percolate. He'd felt something was off yesterday. Elliot had seemed wrapped up in his own thoughts all day. He must be taking the news that they were related to Russian mobsters pretty hard. Knowing how seriously he took his job he must be wondering how this news would affect it.

Chris had been so wrapped up in his own anger after leaning the truth about their father that he hadn't been able to spend more than a few minutes on Elliot's concerns. When they'd got into the car at the park on Christmas Eve, the closest he'd been able to get to thinking about it was worrying that he'd now be forced to come clean about the extent of his involvement with the Russian mob and that Elliot would want to put as much distance between himself and Chris as possible. Other than his relationship with Toby, his relationship with the Mob had been the cause of the best and the worst experiences of his life. He knew Elliot would never be able to cope with either end of the spectrum or anything between.

He called Toby. No answer. No message either. Was he fucking with him now? Chris thought they'd agreed that the phone call embargo was off. He drank his coffee. Then he gave up and called Elliot. No answer either. Fuck.

Half an hour later, with still no return calls or messages from either of them, Chris called again. And half an hour later again. By this time he was brooding.

He didn't want to call Kathy and raise the alarm. If he couldn't call Kathy he couldn't call any of the children. He didn't know Elliot's mother-in-law well enough to call her. He considered calling Bonnie and getting her to call instead on false pretences, but decided to leave that until he had no other card to play.

He flipped through channels on Elliot's TV. Christ, the guy needed a new TV too. Chris had got used to his plasma screen. This TV was out of the ark. What did they pay cops anyway? Not nearly enough. Crime definitely paid better.

Little by little his thoughts returned to the events of the twenty fourth. It made him feel tired just going back there. Why had the Spook never told him the truth? Everyone knew the man was cold as ice. All the same Chris had always felt a kind of bond with him. Maybe the Spook thought Chris'd failed him. Maybe that's why he never told him the truth. Chris knew the Spook had disapproved of his drug use. He liked to blame that on being made to help Junior with his nasty habits, but really he'd started using before then. Back as a kid before Lardner even, he'd dabbled in drugs. He didn't start seriously using until he went to prison though.

That wasn't all the Spook had disapproved of. He hadn't been too keen on Chris' sexual activities either. Back in the day the Spook had been the brains behind the organization, although his elder brother - Chris' uncle - had been the big boss. Big Daddy had relied on the Spook for smarts, for connections, for business acumen. Big Daddy was no fool, but he wasn't on the Spook's level and, unlike the Spook, he loved the more visible attributes of power - living large, the money, the recognition, the fawning staff, nice clothes, nice cars. The Spook liked the control. He liked to know that he could make things go his way. He liked to work behind the scenes. Chris liked that too. That's why he'd approached Chris to do some private work for him in the early to mid nineties. Like father, like fucking son.

Chris' ruminations were interrupted by the doorbell buzzing. Wasn't likely to be Elliot. Chris tossed his cell phone onto the coffee table, next to his half-finished coffee, heaved himself off Elliot's couch and went to answer it.


Toby was standing in the doorway, bundled up in a dark winter coat and light blue scarf and woolen hat. His breath made clouds as he breathed out and he was rubbing his gloved hands together for warmth. Chris stared at him.

"Are you going to invite me in?" asked Toby, with a grin.

Chris stepped forward, looked out into the snowy street and pulled Toby inside. They kissed, wrapped in each other's arms for a very long time. "I take it Elliot and the family are out?" said Toby, a bit breathlessly, as they broke apart for air.

"Yeah, they're..." Chris wondered what to say. He waved his hand vaguely. "You're a little early, Toby. I wasn't expecting you back until the twenty ninth. Everything okay?"

"Yeah, everything's fine. Just thought I'd come back early and surprise you."

Toby stepped away to take off his hat, scarf and coat. He was wearing jeans, a polo neck and one of his nerdy sweaters. Chris could have eaten him alive.

"I missed you, Toby," his voice was breathy as he put his arms around Toby's wiry form again. This time he could feel much more of it. He felt Toby's arms go around him too. He slipped his hand from Toby's waist to between his legs.

"I missed you too, Chris," whispered Toby into his good ear. "I've been to the apartment trying to find you... doorman hadn't seen you in days...hoped you be here... Christ..."

"You went to the apartment?" Chris murmured, his hand continuing its ministrations.

Toby gasped.

"What if they come home?"

Chris grinned into Toby's neck, nipped him through the wool of his polo neck.

"Want to go upstairs?" he said. "Elliot's bed has got a great mattress."

Toby hesitated. Chris paused too. Jesus, now what?

"We're going to fuck in Elliot's bed?" said Toby doubtfully.

Chris smiled his best, most dazzling, winning smile. It seemed to win Toby over.

"I'll be really popular if he catches us," was all he muttered.

Yeah, thought Chris. Maybe Elliot'll finally get it. They hurried upstairs, laughing, their shoes making too much noise on the stairs.

"How was Martha's Vineyard?" asked Chris, pulling off his sweatshirt.

"Great," said Toby, dropping his sweater. "Clean snow, beautiful homes, Bessie's a great homemaker and Edward's been very good to us too."

"How's your Mom?" Chris tugged off his sneakers.

"Very happy, I think, at last," said Toby, yanking at his own footwear. "She's staying on with Holly and Harry for a few days until after New Year."

He came to stand between Chris' legs, as Chris sat on the edge of the bed, looking up at him.

"How are you doing?" Toby asked him gently. "After we spoke yesterday, I got to the mainland as soon as I could."

Chris flopped back on the bed and looked up at him.

"I don't know, Toby. I'm struck by the irony that I never knew until last year that I was adopted and it turns out that I've been working for my real father for years, while my brother, who's been looking for our family for decades hasn't found him until now."

"Where is Elliot anyway?" Toby knelt down between Chris' legs, put his hands on Chris' thighs, stroked them.

"He's out. Are you going to talk about him the whole time?" complained Chris, propping himself up on his elbows so he could see Toby.

"I guess not," said Toby, edging Chris' sweats down over his hips. "Got any lube?"

"Goddamn it." Chris lay back on the bed. "No. I left it at the apartment."

"Shit," said Toby. "I was in such a hurry to get here I didn't think to bring any."

He got onto the bed too, crawled over to Elliot's bedside table and opened the drawer. Chris watched him.

"Elliot won't have any," he said.

"We'll have to improvise. What about Kathy? Maybe she's got some lotion."

Toby started making his way to the other side of the bed.

Elliot's land line rang. As Chris picked up he realized he should just have let the answering machine do it, for no other reason than Elliot would have called him on his cell phone.

"Hey," he said.

"This is Cragen," said Elliot's captain. "Chris, I need to talk to you about Elliot."

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