Appropriate Reactions
by Calico


"Wilde was a gay movie, my part was gay. I have a lot of gay
mates, and Atti is a good kisser. That's all I have to say about
this."

-- Orlando Bloom, making it far too easy




The eighth day of filming, Elijah was late.

After five minutes, he realised that everyone seemed to be grinning at him, in a less-than-professional way. After ten minutes, he caught sight of a piece of paper being hastily folded and tucked behind someone's hip, and he went up to the someone and squinted at them and then said, "okay, wiseguy, no more pipe until you hand it over."

"It's a prop," Dom protested, "you can't withhold prop privileges. That's not on."

Elijah squinted harder, and the note was eventually, reluctantly released into his imperious custody.

At twelve minutes, round by the water fountain, he caught up with Orlando.



"Aw, c'mon," he'd expected to hear, "it's just a laugh," and maybe a winning smile - but no, no, because what actually happened was Orlando spied the note and whooped and grappled him for it, hands sweeping intrusively everywhere before immobilising Elijah's wrists against his hips, no words save for a curse or two through breathless laughter as Elijah squirmed.

Remembering about the set and the public and stuff, Elijah decided he should stop that squirming, because it was slipping into something else, felt risky right now for highly inscrutable reasons. He wanted Orlando to let go, but this clearly wasn't the answer. Relaxing would be. Right.

He went still, ignoring the way his stomach still jumped about crazily, and was rewarded by Orlando slipping his thumbs across his hips and leaning in, lips parting near Elijah's mouth and then gliding onwards, mouth dipping to his ear.

"It's just a joke," he said, and Elijah flinched, because he hadn't expected a voice. Uh, hadn't expected anything, that is. Obviously. Like, said a treacherous part of his mind, he hadn't expected anything else, like cream, or a fridge to drop out the sky, or the twinkle of Orlando's tongue swiping across his ear.

He swallowed. "Aragorn better watch out?" he recited. Orlando's cheek was warm and smooth against his cheek - not elf-smooth, like, whatever, water running over pearls, moonlight trapped in velvet, but man-smooth, like, uh. A warm man. Who exfoliated. "Elijah 4 Liv 4 ever? I mean," he mumbled, trying not to tip his head back so Orlando's mouth hovered against his cheek, "that's not even. You mixed up the names."

Orlando drew back, hands still solicitously immobilising him, face adult-bearing-bad-news serious. "What, you mean, it should be Elijah for Aragorn?"

If Elijah'd had a hand free, he'd have hit him. "No," he said, as patiently as he could manage, which wasn't very. It came out like a negative squeak. "The movie names. With real life."

Orlando raised his eyebrows like Elijah'd cleared up something he'd been puzzling over all week. "Oh," he said, word stretching to the length of a sigh, "and there was I thinking you'd be objecting to the mildly embarrassing schoolboy prank bit of it, but no. You're caring about the continuity." His fingers had turned light on Elijah's wrists, but it was the lightness of a cat's paw stilled on a feather, the depth of touch that's poised to react by clamping hard. "Seems to me," Orlando added, leaning in again, mouth tilting back against Elijah's ear, voice breeze-soft, "you're ripe for a lesson in appropriate reactions."

He licked Elijah's ear - barely barely licked, Elijah's mind shrieked, feeling his eyes go huge; barely barely, probably didn't at all - and then, when all Elijah did was freeze up solid, ran the glide of his teeth against Elijah's earlobe. "What the hell," Elijah managed, "istheappropriatereactiontothat?"

"Well," a chuckle, choppy tropics on his ear, "there's all sorts, isn't there," and then Orlando was drawing back again, fingertips slipping across Elijah's palm, "but if you're asking my advice..." His glance cut across to the empty doorway, then back, eyes bright and unreadable.

"um," Elijah said. "Are you." He tried again. Bite the bullet, boy. Be brave. And quit with the alliteration. "Do you wanna make out?"

"Uh, no," Orlando said, "I've never wanted to make out with you," and Elijah blinked, stung.

"Oh." Um. "So, why--"

"not once in my entire life," Orlando added, as if for good measure, and Elijah wondered if the trapdoor could just open now, please, and then, in an entirely different tone of voice, Orlando added, "I've wanted to kiss you," and then, "and fool around," sounding like a confession, making Elijah's mouth feel prickly inside, "but make out?" Orlando finished, normal voice, highly critical, "er, no."

Right. Um. "Riiight," Elijah said, hoping he didn't look all that confused. "Aren't they... kind of all the same?"

"No comment," Orlando said, smirking. Elijah's foot twitched. He had the worst feeling he wanted to stamp and demand to know what Orlando was getting at - why he wasn't getting to it already, one way or the other - but he had a feeling he'd get mocked. Orlando seemed to be all about the mocking, today. Among other things.

"So, uh," Elijah said, light as he could. "Where were we?"

"I was thinking of writing another note," Orlando said, equally light. The curve to his lips carried more than mockery, Elijah was pretty sure. Was vaguely sure. Hoped.

"Another one."

Orlando shrugged. "Since the first one went down so satisfyingly."

Elijah punned distractedly, but managed to keep it in his head. "That's what you call satisfying?" Mostly.

Teeth, Elijah thought, when Orlando flashed a smile. "I can write on the back," he said.

Fine, Elijah thought, he'd take the bait - and then wanted to know if Orlando was aware that his hands were still at Elijah's wrists, that his thumbs still rested on his hipbones, that his grip was almost coaxing Elijah's hips to ease forwards and tip up. From the light in Orlando's eyes, he figured, yes. Maybe bait worth taking, then. "Whatcha going to write."

"Mm. I was thinking, Frodo for Legolas forever?" Orlando said, grinning a little. It was like watching someone else carry out a dare.

"We're not even the same species," Elijah said, and Orlando's grin widened.

"Again, that's what you're challenging?"

"Not forever, either," Elijah added.

"No?"

"See if I spend forever with your scrawny ass." He let himself enjoy it, allowed his voice to go assertive and warm. "Elves live hundreds of years."

"okay," Orlando said, in an entirely different tone of voice, fingers curling against Elijah's hands and then sliding up, up - and he was tall, tall, but curved down when Elijah's hands somehow collided with the side of his chest.

"okay?" Again, the squeak. He felt a couple of struggling braincells hope Orlando wasn't gonna remember the squeak aspect, before they lost interest and concentrated on how Orlando's breath was against his cheek again.

"So how about," Orlando was saying, soft voice, hands suggesting that Elijah's face should tilt up, mouth finding his jaw and this was sudden and a random day and delicious gossamer shivers were skidding across him, "just a night?" and Elijah closed his eyes and then broke out laughing, because it hit him that, yes, they we gonna make out in a corner after a charade without the slightest hint of professionalism, and that had just the right chord of random to it to make him giggle right now. And sorry, wait, no, not make out: fool around, how could he forget.

Orlando backed off, suspiciously, and Elijah's stomach panged nervously, his breath still hitching. "Sorry," he managed, "sorry, sorry," finding he really didn't like having his hands free to wave about like a fool, "um, no," and then, "come back, c'mon," and Orlando's eyes were narrow, and Elijah found himself swallowing. "um."

"This is a joke?" Orlando said, suspiciously, and Elijah shook his head quickly. C'mon, now. Big guileless alien-blue eyes, do your work. Please.

"Not a joke," he promised, and tugged one-handed at Orlando's tunic, because he had a crazy sense that two hands would be too forward, then telling himself not to think so much and blatantly ignoring the sudden wild flash that maybe it was a joke and please don't let him be humiliating himself, please, please, "please, um. It's not. Unless it is for you. But. I'm hoping not. Uh. Orli? Speak to me?"

"Okay, you're not giving me a nickname, for one," Orlando told him, and Elijah started to wince because whoops, nicknames, but then the room was tilting because everything looked exactly the same apart from Orlando being that much closer and nuzzling at his mouth, and then the room was gone because Elijah's eyes closed and that was that, was heat and wetmouth and big hands cupping his head, was the press of the wall into his back in a sort of peripheral blur.



On the ninth day of filming, Elijah was late. So was Orlando.


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