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Title: The Half Killed (1/2)
Author: monstrousreg
Word count:  2939
Warnings:  Angst, NC-17 for smut and violence.
Pairing: Erik/Charles.
Summary: Atonement AU or crossover, rather.
Notes:  Unbetaed, and stuff. This is really heavy on the angst, so i don't know why I'm posting it on a Saturday *shrug* I thought I'd try out a new format, an non-linear, non-chronological story for a change. Let's see how it works out.

Erik Lehnsherr goes to prison accused of a crime he didn’t commit—a crime he would never commit.

He stays there three years.

At the end of that time, his mind is such a warped, twisted place that he tears out the prison cell door, uses the bars to impale the policemen that try to stop him. He vanishes into the night, never to be seen or heard of again.

Charles Xavier finds him, three years later. He’s the first creature Erik sees and doesn’t feel the immediate impulse to slaughter. The impulse does surge a second later, though, when Charles reaches for his hand, and a moment later he wraps it around Charles’ slender neck and thinks of how easily Charles would die.

Come back, Charles whispers gently without moving his lips.

>>>>>>>>>>>>> 

Jt’s Charles that opens the door—of course it’s Charles, even though they have a butler to do that for them, and Charles never opens the door.

Erik swallows, but raises his chin, eyes open and clear. The end is coming, and he’s going to face it like the man he is. Charles turns on his heels and stalks away without a word or a single backwards glance, with the authority of the man that knows he will be followed. And Erik, the man that does the following, closes the door and stalks in his wake, longer legs striding forward and following a familiar path to the Xavier patriarch’s ancient library.

Charles whirls to face him. Erik steps inside and closes the door.

“No one was supposed to read it,” he says when Charles continues to stare at him, blue eyes on fire.

“Raven read it,” Charles retorts, voice hard. “You know how she is with letters.”

“It wasn’t the one I wanted to give to you. I’d written—that wasn’t the one.”

“No?” Charles sneers. “You didn’t want me to read the letter about how you’d like to put my cock in your mouth?”

Erik stiffens.

There’s a long moment of silence.

“You stopped talking to me,” Charles says, voice hard. “You wouldn’t look at me anymore. I thought you were sick of me.”

“Never,” Erik says brokenly. “I—it was self preservation. I didn’t want… you kept going home with—others. Girls. I couldn’t—“

“You never fucking told me,” Charles says harshly, crumpling the letter in his hand. “I thought you hated me. That you didn’t need to be around me anymore now that Father had paid for your education, you didn’t need to be nice to the spoiled rich brat any longer—“

“No,” Erik comes forward, stops himself just before reaching for Charles’ arm. “No, it wasn’t like that at all. I never thought of you as—“

“You let me think you hated me,” Charles snarls. “All you ever thought about when you saw me was ‘stay away don’t look at him don’t touch him stay away’. Have you any idea how much that hurt? You were my best friend, and then you stopped looking at me.”

“I’m sorry,” Erik says, voice breaking. “I didn’t want to—if I touched you you have known, I didn’t want you to know. I was afraid that—you like women, Charles, and I know what I wanted would have made you turn away—“

“You didn’t know anything,” Charles says furiously, shoving Erik away. Erik caught his arm, forcing the telepath to take a step forward along with him when he lost his balance and had to step backwards to redress it. Charles struggles to wrench his arm away and Erik, bereft and sick with longing after years of being denied the contact, only tightens his fingers.

“You’ve no idea—I thought you hated me, and I felt like I was dying. You wouldn’t look at me. I thought—it felt like I was bleeding out, every time I saw you and you wouldn’t look at me. Every time I saw you, it stabbed me. You were gone, you left me alone. You didn’t even—you didn’t know anything!

He’s struggling in earnest now, shoving at Erik’s chest with surprising strength, but Erik is taller and harder, stronger. Charles’ fingers catch in the lapel of Erik’s suit jacket, and with the newfound leverage he manages to pull himself almost free. Erik feels almost physical pain at the distance. He wraps his fingers on Charles shirt collar and pulls him back, puts his long arms around the smaller man to contain his arms.

Charles thrashes like an animal out of its mind with fear. Erik backs him up against the book case and pins him there, unable to find any words in the face of Charles’ formidable anger.

“I didn’t want you to know,” he manages to say finally, gripping Charles’ wrists. “I knew you wouldn’t—“

“You didn’t know anything,” Charles repeats fiercely, and surges forward to kiss him.

>>>>>>>>>>>> 

They don’t live together in Oxford, because Charles’ family owns a magnificent flat in a good part of the city and Erik rents a room in a run-down student house near the University.

Charles spends much more time lying on Erik’s bedroom floor than sitting to his beautiful desk in the flat.

Erik, consequently, spends more time staring at Charles flat stomach than at the books he should be reading.

“Do you ever think,” Charles says, one afternoon as they lie in the terrace sharing a smoke. “about Poland?”

Erik shrugs, “I hardly remember it. I was three when we left.”

“You should have the English citizenship.”

Erik shrugs again.

“You could get it if you married.”

Erik snorts, “Who is going to marry me, Charles?” and he carefully doesn’t think of the birthmark Charles has on his right hipbone, the small, cherry-shaped dot of darker skin he envision running the flat of his tongue over. It’s easy, not thinking about it—he knows how to keep things from Charles. He keeps those thoughts behind doors plated with mirror panes, and Charles keeps respectfully away.

“I’m sure you could ask Raven,” Charles blows smoke through parted lips. “She would marry you in a heartbeat.”

Erik laughs. Raven is nine, and has a deep, sometimes even unsettling hero worship for him because when Charles is busy with Xavier family obligations, Erik spends time with her so she won’t feel lonely.

If he married Raven, he could live in the manor and keep seeing Charles every day. He puts that thought behind a mirrored door and slams it shut.

No Xavier would marry a servant, anyway.

>>>>>>>>> 

Behind mirrored doors in his mind, Erik imagined the salty taste of Charles’ skin. The taste of his lips, of the long line of his throat, of the skin taught over collarbones and stomach and hipbones and between his shoulder-blades.

>>>>>>>>>> 

Charles is a rubbish flirt, but he’s beautiful and charming and truly good-natured. It’s a rare woman that can resist his advances.

When Charles drinks, he becomes even more tactile and demonstrative than normal, draping himself over Erik’s shoulders, laying his hands on Erik’s arms, leaning in close so as to avoid yelling over the music on the bar.

Then he finds his target for the night, and leaves Erik alone and cold in a bar in the company of a beer.

>>>>>>>>>>>>> 

Charles likes pretty girls with long hair and almond-shaped eyes.

Erik likes lanky boyish men with dark hair and blue eyes.

>>>>>>>>>>>>> 

At the beginning of the second year of his Engineering career, Erik starts subtly telling Charles that he needs more time to study. On his own. Charles, ever graceful and good-natured, easily complies to his needs.

It isn’t until about six months later than he realizes that Erik purposefully makes sure they only ever see each other once a week, and in public, open places. They sit across the table at a café in Oxford and Charles’ blue eyes are wide with shock and hurt, and his mind scrambles against Erik’s vaulted, mirrored one.

What have I done wrong? Why are you angry at me? What did I do? Erik? I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to.

Erik doesn’t answer.

Soon he starts making excuses and skipping the weekly meetings.

He catches Charles in a bar one night, leaving as Erik arrives. Charles’ hand shoots out and he grabs Erik’s arm. His fingers are warm against the cold of Erik’s skin.

Erik, please—

Erik disentangles his arm, thinks don’t look at him don’t touch just move away—thinks it so desperately to himself he only realizes minutes later that he didn’t put it behind mirrored doors. Sick to the stomach, chest crushing inwards, he stumbled out into the night only to find that Charles is gone.

He thinks of going to the flat, stumbling in and laying his heart bare to his friend, let him see everything he keeps away, apologize for hurting him until Charles holds him like he used to when the death of Erik’s father was fresh and spent nights crying until he hurt. 

He doesn’t.

>>>>>>>>>>> 

Sometimes he thinks maybe Charles would understand. Sweet, charming Charles that can read people’s mind.

He’s probably already been in the minds of men that love other men. And Charles has an open, accepting mind, he never judges, never rejects. He embraces Erik’s religion as easily as he does his own, seeing in them no differences.

So sometimes he thinks maybe Charles will understand.

But then he remembers that sodomy is illegal, and if Erik is to be found one day he will be arrested and go to prison. He won’t make Charles an accomplice in his crimes.

So he bows his head, and when he sees Charles in Oxford, he thinks don’t look at him, move away.

>>>>>>>>> 

By the third year in Oxford, they don’t talk.

Charles stops looking for him at the bars, stops staring at him sadly.

Erik feels like he’s dying.

>>>>>>>>> 

Erik pins Charles against the book case and kisses him like his lips are the air he needs to live. He licks into Charles’ open mouth and surges up against him, almost crushing him against the books. Tangles his fingers in Charles’ combed hair and tugs and when Charles gasps, he presses his hips forwards in a roll and blood sings in his veins when he finds an erection against his own.

Charles’ fingers undo his suit jacket. Erik opens Charles and tugs at his shirt until it pulls free of his pants and slips his hands inside and yes, miles and miles of gloriously smooth skin, muscles flexing underneath the pads of his fingertips. Charles gasps again, hips bucking against Erik’s.

The only sound in the library is the combined rasp of their pants and breathless moans and gasps. Erik drags Charles shirt up until he can swipe fingertips over Charles’ nipples. Charles fumbles with Erik’s belt buckle, manages to open it and slips his hand inside his trousers.

Erik pushes a knee between Charles’ thighs, undoes with his mind his belt buckle and both their buttons and zippers. He moves an inch away so that Charles can shove his pants and underwear down to reach and wrap his long, fine-boned fingers around his length. Erik struggles not to come then and there, pants harshly against Charles’ open mouth.

“That what you want?” he asks breathlessly, thrusting in Charles’ hand. It’s dry and the angle is wrong and there’s no room to maneuver between them, but it’s Charles’ hand on his bare skin and it’s perfect. “You want to touch me?”

Yes yesyesyes

Erik plants open-mouthed kisses along the slender length of Charles long neck, thrusting in time with Charles clumsy hand, nearly blind with pleasure. He presses his thigh up against Charles’ balls and growls when Charles throws his head back and chokes on a moan.

He bats Charles’ fingers away, drops to his knees and yanks Charles’ pants down to free his cock. Charles squeaks, but he has no time to protest before Erik’s sucked his length into his mouth, bobbing his head up and down expertly. Charles’s fingers card into his hair, but he doesn’t tug. His mind is an endless, senseless loop of yesyespleasesogooderikyesfuckyesfuck

Erik thinks yes, go ahead and digs his fingers into Charles’ thighs when Charles’ hips snap forward. Charles hesitates, but Erik pulls him forward encouraging and there’s really no way to fight that kind of offer.

It’s messy and wet and Charles doesn’t last long at all. By the time he comes he’s so deep in Erik’s mouth that Erik doesn’t even have a taste, he just swallows around the head of his cock. Then he gets up again and Charles tugs at his hair and kisses him, doesn’t even mind the bitter-salty taste on his tongue.

Charles’ fingers are on his erection again, eager and warm. A moment later he brings his hand up and spits into it before grabbing hold of him again. Erik wraps his own, large hand around him and shows him how he likes it best, a slow rhythm and a firm hand, a tug and a twirl at the end. He snakes his arm around Charles shoulders until Charles’ head rests on the crook of his elbow, a position he knows is
commanding and possessive, but Charles seems to like it.

“Yeah?” Charles breathes, blue eyes wide and dark. “Is that good?”

Erik can only manage a whine-like yes.

He doesn’t last long either, comes in long spurts on Charles’ bare stomach and fingers, crying out into the inside of Charles’ mouth.

They are tangles to intimately into one another, physically and mentally, that neither one notices the opening of the door or the new mind in the room.

“Charles?” Raven asks shakily.

>>>>>>>>>>> 

Everybody thinks Erik is guilty. Everybody but Charles.

All of the inmates in his prison think they are entitled to punish the monster in their midst, the freak, the pedophile.

Erik worsens his sentence by killing the first three men that try to rape him. It’s self defense, but it’s apparently not something he’s meant to do—defending himself, saving himself. He’s a freak and a monster, and deserves to be raped and killed.

The next day he’s moved to a different wing of the prison.

Here he meets Sebastian Shaw.

>>>>>>> 

Erik’s always had a way with children, and knows the sprawling grounds better than anyone. He knows where the Summers boys might have fled to in their desire to escape the stifling confines of the manor. He finds them in the lake, huddled for warmth beneath the great willow tree. He stays there with them for a little while, sitting in the grass, and finally convinces them to come to the manor with him.

Scott is tired and sleepy, so he picks him up and carries him. Alex babbles excitedly about how Erik’s agreed to persuade Charles to teach the boys to ride horses—Charles is a superb rider, and delights in teaching children. Erik gets he added bonus of watching him ride, a sight worth a hundred nights of helpless, hopeless fantasies. Then he remembers the feel and weight of Charles’ cock against his tongue and realizes they need not be either helpless or hopeless any more.

He knows something is wrong as soon as he gets to the circle of light around the manor. Charles, sitting on the steps to the front door, gets to his feet, shoulders slumped and face pale and sad. Erik shifts Scott’s heavy weight in his arms, alarmed, and starts when a police officer yanks the boy from him, eyes outraged and full of hate.

Alex kicks the man’s him. Another officer grabs him, pulls him away. Charles stalks forward, shoves at an officer attempting to contain him and crashes against Erik, gripping his neck in cold, clammy hands.

I’ll make it right, his mind says desperately. I’ll make this right, Erik I’ll get you out, I’ll straighten everything out and tell the truth, I’ll save you, trust me, believe in me, Erik, Erik I promise Erik

An officer wraps his arm around Charles’ stomach and throws him away into the arms of other two. Charles snatches his arms away, glaring murderously around, standing straight and tall, the proud and dignified son of a wealthy English nobleman. The policemen hover but don’t touch him.

Flimsy metal cuffs are forced around Erik’s wrists, twisted behind his back.

Erik and Charles look at each other and Charles looks broken and furious and helpless. Alex and Scott are screaming. Charles says nothing.

Erik’s mother slaps and bats at the officers, but they pull her back. Erik is grateful at least that they treat her kindly, that they do honestly try not to hurt her even though she’s fighting and kicking and screaming in several languages.

“Don’t touch her,” Charles says icily, steps forward and wraps his arms around her thin frame, hiding her face in his chest. “Don’t fucking touch her.”

Edie shakes like a leaf, fisting her hands in the fabric of Charles’ new, clean shirt—he had to change after what they did in the library—what they did—the library—

Erik is taken away in the back of a patrol car and all the while he stares at Charles’ eyes, until a bend in the road steals him of even that.

>>>>>>>>>> 

“I wouldn’t believe everything Raven tells you,” Charles Xavier says, voice cold and eyes like icebergs, and exhales smoke through his nostrils. “She tends to be—fanciful.”

>>>>>>>>>> 

In his cell, at night, Erik Lehnsherr thinks of broken promises and mirrored doors inside his mind.




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