Also, I apologise in advance that this is really just the plot of "Kissing Orlando" re-worked, but I really needed to find out how these guys are together. I definately feel like I'm getting there now. And I'm quite unrepentant, actually. I mean, if I can't plagiarise myself, then I don't deserve the title of "fan", do I? ;)
Title: Daredevil's Dilemma, part 2
Disclaimer: Lies, all lies!
Notes: Part 1, Part 3, Part 4
"You're just bitter," said Casey to Ben, as he chased an elusive pea around the bottom of an almost empty fried-rice box, "because I'm a better Daredevil than you are."
"In your dreams," said Ben, giving a final lick to his chopsticks before tossing the chow mein box onto the carpet alongside several other empties. He stabbed the chopsticks in Casey's direction, "and I have the scars to prove it."
"Oooooh!" said Casey. "Did widdle you get a hangnail while watching your stunt double? I'm so impressed!"
"Fuck you," said Ben, ripping open the packet of fortune cookies and picking one out.
"So," said Casey to Matt, "ready for another round of spectacular losing yet?"
"Nah," said Matt, pulling another fortune cookie out of the bag. "Ben and I should probably talk about Project Greenlight before I head off."
Casey gave him a sceptical look. "Don't think your weak excuse fools me. You're afraid!"
"Yes," said Matt, nodding solemnly as he took a bite of his fortune cookie. "I fear the dexterity of your thumbs. See me quail."
"And don't you forget it!" said Casey, grabbing the packet of fortune cookies and getting up.
"Hey," said Ben, as he carefully crushed his cookie in a fisted hand. "I haven't finished with those yet."
"The spoils of victory," said Casey, shaking the bag triumphantly. "Have fun with your schemes for total world domination. I'll see myself out." He pulled out a cookie and started to eat it as he headed out the door, leaving a trail of cookie crumbs behind him.
"Little shit," Matt said, affectionately.
"Dammit," said Ben, staring down at his fortune as he licked cookie crumbs from his palm. "This one sucks."
"What does it say?"
"'All that's old is new again,'" said Ben, flicking the paper into one of the empty cartons. "What about yours?"
"'Keep your enemies close and your friends closer,'" said Matt with a wry twist to his mouth.
"Isn't that the wrong way around?" asked Ben.
"Yep," said Matt.
They looked at each other for a long, loaded moment.
"Why do we even read the fucking things?" asked Ben. "They're designed to fuck with our heads."
"We're artists," said Matt. "We like being head-fucked."
"Oh, yeah. Artists," said Ben, as though it were a dirty word. "How's that working out for you, anyway?"
Matt see-sawed his hand. "I think it's made me kind of paranoid."
"Just because you're paranoid," said Ben, grinning, "doesn't mean they aren't out to get you."
"Or in this case," said Matt, "it doesn't mean your brother's not lurking in the hall with a video camera just because I haven't heard his car start."
Ben stood up. "I was just thinking the same thing."
"Is he even in his car?" asked Matt, rolling to his feet.
Ben pulled aside the edge of a curtain and attempted to peer out into the darkness. "I can't tell. All I can see is me."
"I hate cliched symbolism," said Matt.
As Ben turned to frown at him, twin beams from a pair of headlights strobed through the window, followed by the sound of an engine turning over and a blare of music.
Ben turned back to the window and pressed his middle finger up against the glass. He got a horn tooting the Blues Brother's theme in response, which rapidly faded into the distance.
"Alone at last," said Matt, sounding amused, and flopped onto the couch.
Ben let the curtain fall back into place, and circled around the back of the couch like a shark scenting blood in the water. He came to a stop facing Matt, a careful three feet of distance between them.
"So," said Matt, fluttering his eyelashes. "How do you want me?"
"I think that is quite possibly," said Ben, staring at Matt in patent horror, "the weirdest thing you've ever said to me."
"Really?" said Matt, looking interested. "Stranger than the time I told you I wanted to be a Bond villain with a strange and oddly camp prosthetic?"
"Not even in the same league," said Ben, shaking his head.
"What about the time my brother painted me blue, and I told you it was because I was going to be in a blue movie?"
Ben grinned. "Jesus. I'd forgotten about that."
"Or the time," said Matt, reminiscently, "I told you we should run away and join the circus."
"As the Incredibly Talentless Brothers of No Saleable Skills?" said Ben. "Okay, I take it back. You've always been a whack job."
"And don't you forget it!" said Matt, with an emphatic nod.
They grinned at each other for a moment, the tension between them easing.
"Come on then," said Matt, patting the couch. "Stop making such a big fucking deal out of it and just do it already."
Ben slid onto the seat, not quite within touching distance. "I know it's stupid. But it just feels weird."
"I know," said Matt. "I get it."
"I don't know where to put my fucking hands," Ben said, holding them up and waving them around.
"This is the undercover scene, right?" asked Matt. "It's kind of..." he paused, groping for the right word, and then, making air quotes, "uber-macho."
Ben nodded. "Yeah, I'm kinda," he lowered his voice into a John-McClaine-esque wise-guy drawl, "Bruce Willis in The Jackal." And then, dropping the imitation, "Except, not so much with the killing you part."
Matt considered that for a moment. "So, maybe put one hand on my neck. That's a dominance thing, right? And maybe the other one on my thigh," and at Ben's frown, "You wouldn't be hesitant. This isn't going to be a polite kiss. It's going to be..." he shrugged, "You know. Demanding. Ruthless."
"Yeah," said Ben slowly. "I'm seriously putting the moves on you. Making you want it. Not quite rape, but..."
"But expecting me to like it rough," said Matt. "Yeah, I think so."
"Okay," said Ben. "Okay, I can do this." He inched forward, rubbing both hands on his t-shirt, then reached out and awkwardly put one on Matt's neck, and the other just above Matt's right knee.
Matt looked down at the hand primly clutching his knee. "Very convincing," he said, with deep sarcasm, but leaned forward helpfully anyway.
"Don't laugh!" said Ben, staring at Matt's mouth with obvious trepidation.
Before Matt had finished rolling his eyes, Ben lurched forward and planted his mouth on top of Matt's. He held it there for a long moment, doing nothing.
With a rude sound, Matt opened his own mouth and licked Ben's clenched teeth.
Ben pulled away, blinking and swallowing. "Sorry."
"Don't be sorry," said Matt. "It's weird."
"Yeah," said Ben, letting go of Matt and rubbing both hands up and down on his jeans.
"It made me think of..." Matt trailed off, running a finger across his lips.
"What?" said Ben, offended. "Were you going to say an octopus? I didn't, like, slobber on you or anything!"
"No. That would have required you to open your mouth," Matt said, without any real heat. He reached over and ran his nails across Ben's stubble with a loud rasping sound. "I just had this sudden sense memory of my Dad kissing me good night," and at Ben's appalled look, "It wasn't anything twisted, you dirty-minded pervert. He was just prickly. Like you. And I'd forgotten he used to do that."
"My kiss reminded you of your Dad," said Ben, pulling Matt's hand away from where it was still tracing over his chin. "What part of that isn't meant to scar me forever?"
"I think it's psychologically interesting," said Matt. "I wonder if that ever happens for women?"
"God, you're a freak," said Ben. "I don't want to think about women thinking about their Dads when I'm kissing them."
"That's because you're a wuss. People think all sorts of weird shit all the time."
"Yes," said Ben, "but I don't have to know about it!"
"You do if you want to write good screenplays," Matt said, leaning forward. "Come on. Do it again."
With a heavy sigh Ben put his hands back into position. "Twenty million dollars," he said, as he leaned towards Matt.
"A best friend willing to put up with your shit?" said Matt. "Priceless!"
Ben was smiling as he pressed their mouths together, and this time, when Matt licked at Ben's teeth, Ben tentatively opened his mouth and licked back. For a brief moment their tongues came together, probing awkwardly at each other, and then they both pulled away, licking their lips.
"Okay. Technically?" said Ben, not bothering to take his hands away from Matt's neck and knee this time. "That was better."
"Better than what?" asked Matt. "A dental exam?"
"But it's still weird," said Ben, "because I know it's you."
"Gee thanks," said Matt. "Let me just change into my other identity."
"It's totally personal," said Ben, his lips quirking up at one corner. "It's you. I'm having this internal systems error, telling me I shouldn't know what your mouth tastes like."
"I'm so utterly flattered," said Matt, "that the taste of my mouth provokes unreasoning horror in you, that I can't begin to express it."
"'Unreasoning horror's' a bit strong," said Ben. "It's more like, I've seen what you regularly put in your mouth. It's not pretty."
"Fuck you!" said Matt, putting a hand on Ben's chest and attempting to push him away.
"I'll keep that in mind if I ever have to do a gay arthouse flick," said Ben with a mock leer. "Come on, gimme a kiss."
"Fuck off and find some other man to kiss," Matt said, not relenting. "I can live without your aspersions about my oral hygiene."
"I'll let you fondle my stubble," said Ben, looking at Matt from beneath half-lidded eyes.
"I'm never telling you anything ever, ever again," said Matt, but his hand slid an almost imperceptible increment up Ben's chest.
"You're the only man I want to practice kiss," Ben said, dropping his voice back into Bruce Willis mode, and tightening his grip on Matt's neck. He slid his other hand up Matt's thigh until his thumb was provocatively resting in the crease in Matt's jeans where thigh met body. "I bet we can make it not totally suck if we practice long enough."
"You're a--" said Matt.
Ben didn't let him finish, leaning in and taking Matt's mouth hard while it was still half open, an unspoken word poised on his tongue. He kissed Matt ruthlessly, stroking his tongue into Matt's mouth in the brutal, raw rhythm of sex.
Matt tensed up for a moment, hands fisting in Ben's shirt as though about to push him violently away.
Ben twisted his fingers into Matt's hair, but backed the kiss off a little, sliding his tongue out of Matt's mouth, sucking Matt's bottom lip between his teeth, and biting down not quite hard enough to break skin.
Matt blinked twice, mind catching up with what was happening, and then, very deliberately, he unclenched his fists, smoothing them up over Ben's chest and around his shoulders, holding on tight.
Ben made a little questioning sound into Matt's mouth, and in reply Matt slid his eyes closed and went with it. Let Ben push him back into the couch and take his mouth in another long, hard demand for more, full of teeth and pressure and thrusting tongues, until they were both panting for breath, chests heaving, and it was only when, finally, the kiss began to gentle into something else that Ben broke it off.
Ben rested his forehead against Matt's while they got their breath back.
Matt lifted a hand and pressed it against Ben's stubbled cheek. "I think you got it," he said, still sounding breathless.
"Yeah," said Ben. "Yeah, I think so."
"Just take a snapshot," said Matt. "Remember what this feels like and channel it during the scene. You'll be great."
Ben frowned, letting go of Matt and flopping against the other end of the couch. "I don't know," he said. "It'll be weird kissing some other guy."
"It was weird kissing me," said Matt, frowning back at him. "I'm the guy with disturbing oral issues, remember."
"Yeah," said Ben, with an airy wave of the hand. "But I'm over that now. I could kiss you again anytime."
"So close your eyes and think of me during the scene," said Matt. "Jesus, you just love to make a production out of this crap, don't you?"
"I can't think of you while I'm kissing some other guy," said Ben, looking deeply offended. "It wouldn't be right."
"Sure you can," said Matt, thumping Ben on the shoulder. "I give you permission."
Ben chewed on that idea for a moment. "Or, on the other hand..." he said, but then shrugged, obviously having second thoughts about whatever he'd been about to suggest. "Nah. Forget it. Dumb idea."
Matt just looked at him shrewdly for a long moment. Then sighed and pointed at the script lying on the floor by their feet. "So," he said, voice full of long-suffering resignation, "how big's this fucking part?"
And if you're wondering where this "drabble" came from?
"I'm not gay. I've never even had a gay, you know, thought. The only man I've ever kissed is Jason Lee, in Chasing Amy. The only thing I regret is that I had such a hard time with that scene. The kiss wasn't very convincing, which reflects poorly on me. I just couldn't do it all the way. It was a closed-mouthed kiss, a bullshit false moment. I just blew it." Ben Affleck, Vanity Fair March 2003, p. 200.