Title:  Threats and Promises - posted May 8, 2005
Series:  Comrades in Arms
Author: Lacey McBain

Rating: Slash. R. Bruce/Wally.
Summary: Bruce had said if Wally didn't come back, he'd come and get him. It wasn't a threat. It was a promise.

Threats and Promises

Wally pushes through the door of his apartment and collapses on the couch.  The mask is the first thing that goes, then the boots.  He kicks them off and flops onto his back, hazarding a tentative sniff at the shoulder of his uniform.  It smells like sweat and smoke, and something else.  He sniffs again.  Hm, the smallest hint of musk in the air and …

“Wet dog and seaweed,” Wally says aloud.  “Gross.  That’s the last time I’m saving anyone who falls into the bay.  They can call Aquaman.”

“He’s just as likely to send a shark to the rescue, you know.”

Deep voice, smooth as dark chocolate.  He knows that voice.  Actually, he knows the cologne and the shadow in the corner, too, and he can’t help the little thrill of excitement racing through his body at the idea that Bruce came to Central City to find him.

“Maybe people wouldn’t fall in the bay as often.”  And maybe he’d come home smelling like seaweed and fish just a little less.  There’s a reason he runs on top of the water—he doesn’t necessarily like to get wet, but sometimes he doesn’t have a choice.

“Good point.  Bad day?”

Wally nods and decides not to move.  He can feel himself relaxing, which is strange because that’s not usually the reaction when people come home to find Batman lurking in the shadows of their apartment.

“It’s getting better,” Wally says as Bruce steps into view behind the couch.  He’s not wearing the cape, just dressed in casual clothes—or as casual as Bruce ever gets—dark pants and a silk shirt in some shade between blue and black.  Wally thinks he could get used to this.  Coming home to that handsome face, blue eyes shining at him, and whoa, a hand offering him a …

“Is that a triple cappuccino?”  Wally sits up and grasps the extra-tall Styrofoam cup by the cardboard heat-shield.  The cup’s piled high with swirled whipped cream and chocolate shavings.  There’s a cherry nestled obscenely on the top, its long stem pointing skyward.

“Just the way you like it.”

“God, Bruce.  I hope you realize this is as good as an engagement ring for a speedster.”  Wally sips the coffee, and it’s wonderful.

“Does that mean I can have your cherry?” Bruce asks, and Wally grins at him wickedly.  Bruce is gorgeous when he’s flirting, and it doesn’t happen nearly enough.  He isn’t sure how he got to be so lucky.

“You can have anything you want.”  Wally means every word of it, and it’s not just the caffeine talking.  Well, maybe a little.

Only great sex or cappuccino makes Wally vibrate involuntarily, and Bruce lifts up Wally’s feet and lays them down across his lap, bemused as the couch trembles beneath him.  He smooths a hand over the leather and grins.

“Didn’t know you had a vibrating couch,” Bruce says matter-of-factly.

“It’s the cappuccino.”

Wally sucks in another mouthful of whipped cream and coffee.  It’s warm and sweet, and Wally can’t help but let out a relaxed, happy moan.  Bruce is gently massaging his aching feet and Wally thinks he’s died and gone to heaven.

“Hm, I thought maybe it was me.”

“Oh, do you vibrate when you’re happy too?”  

“Sometimes.”  There’s a smirk in Bruce’s tone.  Wally feels like he’s wafting on a summer breeze, clouds of cream all around him, and the caffeine is hitting just the right spot.  He almost feels human again as he drains the cup and drops it beside the couch.  He closes his eyes.  Maybe he should be concerned Bruce is rubbing his feet—his aching, sweaty, smelly feet that have been in leather boots and spandex all day.

Bruce’s fingers are kneading the muscles of his soles harder now, his movements firm enough not to tickle, although Wally knows Bruce must be tempted.  He seems to like tickling Wally, and quite frankly, Wally’s not about to complain as long as Bruce wants to keep touching him.

“Wally, relax.”

“Who’s not relaxed?”  Wally knows he’s still vibrating, but it’s kind of soothing and he can feel the tension of the day seeping out of his body.  It’s always better when it’s like this, when he doesn’t have to control the vibration, when it just sweeps over him naturally.  He feels Bruce’s hand traveling slowly up his calf, massaging his leg, and stroking the outside of his thigh.  Long fingers move higher, and Wally groans as a large hand cups his groin.


“Hm?”  It’s a languid hum, and it makes Wally vibrate more that Bruce can be this casual about touching him, as if they’ve been together forever instead of just days.

Wally’s wearing protection, but he can still feel Bruce’s hand, and his hips are lifting to meet Bruce’s touch before he can stop himself.  He thinks about the kind of day he’s had—running in circles around Central City, dealing with a handful of arsons in the warehouse district, and a sinking luxury liner on the bay.  Wally’s had his fill of wealthy matrons who won’t let go of their luggage while he’s trying to carry them and their yapping little mutts to shore.

“Bruce, I stink.  I’ve been running all day, and I think I soaked up half the bay.  There could be fish in there for all I know.”

“Maybe I should check.”  Bruce stops massaging him, and Wally opens an eye to see where Bruce is going.  Oh.  He shifts flat onto his back as Bruce braces himself over top of him, one hand tracing the lightning bolt on his chest.  Bruce nudges his face until he turns away.  A tongue tickles the edge of his ear, and Wally shivers.

“No aquatic lifeforms here, but I may need to investigate more closely.”  Fingers trail down his chest, finding his nipple and rubbing, and Wally gasps and twitches, and wonders if he should be worried about the new and increasingly-attentive Batman.
“Bruce, I’m serious.  I need a shower.”  And a new uniform.  Wally’s pretty sure that wet-dog-and-seaweed smell isn’t ever going to come out.

“I’m almost ready to declare you a fish-free zone, but I think I should really check under the suit to be sure.”

A hand finds the hidden seam of his costume, slips inside and strokes the muscles of his abdomen, tracing small swirls in the fine hairs growing there.  Wally shakes his head as Bruce’s fingers slide underneath the waistband of his uniform.

“What’s with you today?  You get a shot of Joker’s happy gas?  Ivy’s plants hit you with pollen again?”

The tongue is replaced by the gentle tug of teeth on his earlobe.  Wally takes a deep breath and slides his arms around Bruce’s back.  He’s wearing silk and Wally tugs at the soft fabric until he finds skin.  And scars.  Sometimes he thinks he would know Bruce’s body anywhere.  It’s beautiful, and absolutely human.

“Are you actually complaining that I’m in a good mood?”

“No, I’m just checking to see if you’ve been replaced by a clone, a robot, or otherwise taken over by psychotropic drugs, pheromone-producing plants, or mind-control.”

“You watch too much science fiction.”

“Hey, when the pod-people invade, I’ll be ready.”

Bruce stops touching and looks at him closely.  “And how exactly would you be able to tell I’m not a … pod-person?”  The words sound funny coming from Bruce, and Wally’s pretty sure he’s never said them in his life.

“I have my ways,” Wally says confidently, earning him a raised eyebrow.  Bruce makes an unconvinced sound and goes back to nuzzling his ear, alternatively sucking and biting at his earlobe until Wally’s vibrating starts to rock them both.

“Tell me,” Bruce whispers.  “How would you know it’s me?”  He shifts his hips and Wally feels Bruce’s erection pressing against his thigh.

“You smell like silk and expensive cologne.”

“That’s Bruce Wayne.”

“You’re Bruce Wayne, you idiot.”  Wally says it carefully, and presses a kiss to Bruce’s cheek.

“Only partly.”  The mouth at Wally’s ear has teeth that graze the soft curve and settle on the lobe.  Wally arches at the sharp tug of skin.  “I’m also Batman.”

“Batman smells like leather and rope and flash-powder.”  Wally slides fingers up the bones of Bruce’s spine, feeling the ridges under his hand.  “And I’d know your scars in the dark.”

“Signs of failure.”

“No, survival.  You’re alive, Bruce, and you’re here.”  Wally pulls back a little and looks at him.  “Why are you here?”

“This is the last time I show up unannounced,” Bruce murmurs, but he isn’t serious.  


“It’s been five days.”

“You can’t go a few days without--?”

“That’s not what I meant.”  There’s a nip at his ear, and Wally wonders when he started responding so intensely to bites at his skin.  He never knew it was a turn-on before.  “I wasn’t sure when you were coming back.”

He says “when,” but Wally knows he means “if.”  He doesn’t know how to reassure him this can work.  Wally knows it can.

“I haven’t been out of touch.”  Wally’s puzzled.  He missed Bruce—of course he did—but they both knew this was going to be a challenge.  “I’ve got a JLA communicator, email I check every day, a direct link to Oracle, and I know you put one of those little bat-tracers on my suit somewhere.”

Bruce tries to look innocent, but it doesn’t work.

“It’s in my boot, isn’t it?”  Wally hasn’t been able to find the damn thing, but he knows it’s there.  Bruce just shrugs as if he doesn’t know exactly what Wally’s talking about.  He’s pretty sure it’s in the boot, but he doesn’t feel like ripping the sole apart to find out.  And after today, he hopes whatever electronics Bruce put in there are waterproof.

Wally kisses Bruce with a smile.  “I talked to you on the phone.  Well, I talked to your voicemail the one day.”

“Yes, Alfred wondered who the obscene phone call was from.”

“Jeez, Bruce, I thought that was a private line.  A cell phone or something.”  Wally’s suddenly horrified.  He tries to remember exactly what he said, but he thinks it might’ve had something to do with whipped cream.  He blushes.  He’d been hopped up on cappuccino at the time, and he’s pretty sure he can’t be held responsible for whatever he might’ve said.

“It is a private line,” Bruce admits after he lets him blush and stammer for a minute.

“Jerk,” Wally says and runs a fingernail down Bruce’s spine.  There’s a slight shift, but it’s enough.  Wally does it again.

“Wally.”  Bruce sounds breathless and Wally plays his fingers across Bruce’s spine in rapid trills.  His breath hitches.  “I just--”

“What, Bruce?”

“I wasn’t sure you were coming back,” Bruce whispers, eyes closing.

“God, Bruce, I would’ve run straight to Gotham if I knew you were worried.”

“I wasn’t worried,” he lies, “but I did say I’d come and get you if you didn’t come back.”  

Wally kisses him because he’s as transparent as glass, and everything he’s afraid of is right there on the surface.  Wally’s pretty sure Bruce doesn’t realize that.

“I thought that was a threat.”

“It was.”

“Is that what you’re doing here?  Coming to get me?”

Wally’s never known this side of Bruce, the person who pursues something he wants.  He’s always known Bruce to be determined, driven, dedicated, but he’s never had that single-minded attention focused on him like this.  It makes him feel like he’s under a spotlight, and he can’t say it bothers him.

“Yes.  Do you mind?”

“Can’t you tell?”

There’s a frustrated little sigh, and Wally knows Bruce is getting tired of talking.  Wally slides a hand around Bruce’s neck and pulls his mouth down to meet him.  The first kiss is little more than crushed lips and smashed noses until they find the angle and then it’s perfection.  Wally moans into the kiss and it only makes Bruce kiss him harder.  Harder and deeper.  Wally loses track of time between the feel of Bruce’s lips, the quick nips of teeth at his throat, and the caress of Bruce’s tongue.  He sucks it into his mouth and feels Bruce groan with wanting.

“I still need a shower,” Wally murmurs.  “Why don’t you join me?”

Bruce groans and sits up, pulling Wally with him.  His uniform top’s gone in an instant, and Bruce doesn’t stop kissing him the entire way to the bathroom.  Wally knows he should wonder how Bruce knows exactly where his bathroom is, but then again, Bruce was in his apartment before he got home.  In spite of his security system, a deadbolt, and living on the fifth floor in a building with no elevator.  By now, Bruce probably knows where his diary is and what drawer he keeps his underwear in.

Wally decides Bruce would make an excellent stalker.

Somehow they manage to fumble out of their clothes and one of them gets the hot water turned on.  Wally tries to remember when he cleaned the tub, and hopes Bruce doesn’t notice the pile of laundry in the hamper, or the purple dinosaur toothbrush that stands on little dinosaur feet.  He’d like to be able to pretend he’s a grown-up when Bruce is around.  At least some of the time, and especially if they’re going to have sex.

Bruce steps in behind him and tugs the shower curtain across the tub.  It’s got penguins in top hats dancing across it, and Wally wonders if that’s going to bring up bad memories for Bruce.  He’d thought it was cute when he pulled it out of the dollar bin at the grocery store, but then he’d never really thought about having Bruce in his shower.  Bruce glances at it oddly, shakes his head, and pushes him under the stream of water.  Wally lets out a sigh as the jet pulses down on him, plastering his hair against his forehead.

“God, that feels good.”  Wally’s talking about the hot water and not the hand touching his chest, which Bruce seems to realize because he laughs, but he doesn’t stop rubbing slow circles around his nipples.  There are teeth and fingers on his skin, and wet, wet lips sucking on his nipples while the water rushes past his ears like the ocean in a seashell.

“This’ll feel better,” Bruce murmurs in his ear.  He bends his knees and reaches behind Wally, then tells him to turn around.  Wally’s vibrating again, anticipating, remembering what happened last time Bruce told him to turn around in the marble and glass shower at the mansion.

There are fingers in his hair and something that smells like papaya, and it takes him a moment to realize Bruce is washing his hair for him.  No one’s done that since he was a kid, and he feels a tightness in his chest he can’t explain.  He’s been looking after himself so long, he’s forgotten what this feels like, to just let someone do it for him.  He squeezes his eyes shut, braces a hand against the blue tile wall he’s been meaning to re-grout, and tries not to think about what it means that Bruce is here, in his shower, washing his hair.  He’s not sure he’s ready for this relationship, after all.

“Sorry about the shower,” Wally says, not knowing what to say to someone who’s massaging his scalp with gentle fingers.  Even his hairdresser doesn’t make it feel that good.  He’s starting to feel self-conscious, and he notices the broken tile around the faucet, and he can hear Bruce’s shoulder brushing the shower curtain as he works his fingers through Wally’s reddish hair.

“There’s nothing wrong with the shower.”  Bruce reaches for the hand-held attachment and starts to rinse out the shampoo, one hand stroking along Wally’s forehead to keep the water out of his eyes.

“Yours is a lot bigger.”  He blushes because he’s pretty sure that’s true of more than just the shower.

“I like this.”  Wally feels Bruce’s hand chasing the last of the bubbles out of his hair.  “It’s … close.”  He isn’t sure what he’d do if Bruce had said “cozy.”  Start checking for the other pod-people, maybe.  “Less room for you to run.”

“Who’s running?” Wally asks breathlessly.  Bruce sets the shower nozzle back in its holder, wraps his arms around Wally from behind and just holds him.  Wally’s still braced against the wall, and Bruce’s weight against his back is solid, warm, and perfect.  He can feel Bruce’s cock hard against his ass, and looks down to see his own responding.  God, what was he thinking staying away for five days?  Was he out of his mind?  Did he really think Bruce needed space?

Wally turns in the circle of Bruce’s arms fast enough to surprise him, and kisses him with everything he has.  Bruce takes a step backwards, right hand tangling in the cheap plastic curtain.  It tears away from the hooks at the top, and Wally knows there’s going to be water on the floor after this shower.  Well, he probably needed to wash the floor anyway.

“Sorry,” Bruce murmurs, still kissing him, and Wally shakes his head.

“I was thinking of replacing it anyway.  Penguins are so last year.  Maybe cats.  You like cats.  Or bats even.”  Bruce’s fingers are tightening on his waist, frustration bleeding into his touches, and Wally smiles.  Oh yeah, he knows what Bruce wants.

“Wally, stop talking.”

“You know what I told you, Bats.  If you want me to stop talking,” Wally slides to his knees and looks up at Bruce, “put something in my mouth.”

“Fuck,” Bruce groans, and Wally doesn’t hesitate as he takes Bruce’s cock into his mouth.  It’s a lot all at once, but Wally doesn’t care.  So far, he’s let Bruce take charge, let Bruce lead the way.  He thinks it’s time to remind Bruce he’s an equal in this, and that he knows exactly what he’s doing.

He braces his hands on the back of Bruce’s ass as he slides his mouth up and down the slick cock.  Bruce smells musky and the curling hairs are almost black against his skin.  Wally remembers to use his tongue as he moves, helping Bruce set a rhythm as he fucks his mouth.

There’s a steady stream of grunts and moans, and Wally knows Bruce isn’t ever going to be a talker, but he’ll settle for this.  It’s sexy and visceral and Wally feels every sound as if he were making it himself.  He feels like Bruce is doing it for both of them, and the thought makes him need to reach down and stroke himself with one hand while he squeezes Bruce’s ass with the other.

He sucks hard as Bruce pulls back, opening his throat at the push in, and swallowing around it so Bruce can feel it all along his cock.  Wally can taste the salty tang of pre-cum in his mouth, and he doesn’t know if it’s a good sign or not that Bruce seems to have found words after all.

“Oh, God, Wally.  Fuck.  Yes.”

So it’s only a few words, but they’re the important ones, and Wally smiles around the cock in his mouth and lets his teeth scrape along its edge just a little as he moves.  Bruce groans and bucks at the sharp pressure, and Wally matches it with the slide of a fingernail down Bruce’s spine.  There’s a thrust that pushes him backwards onto his heels, but he bobs back up and licks along the shiny cock before taking it in again.

He strokes himself faster, wants to be there when Bruce is, and he can tell by the ragged thrusts and the incoherent sounds that he’s almost there, almost … there.  God.  Wally makes quick, short strokes and sucks harder, and lets that trailing finger find the space between Bruce’s legs and he can just push … push … push a knuckle in.  Bruce says “Yes” with the hardest thrust of all, and Wally swallows and swallows and comes, choking, grinning and moaning all at once.

Bruce is on his knees now too on the rubber mat shaped like a fish, the two of them wet and limp and red on the floor of the shower that Wally hopes is clean.  Their skin is starting to pucker from being in here too long, and the water’s gotten colder all of a sudden.  Wally leans against Bruce’s shoulder and kisses him, hears a tile slip from its grouting and shatter on the tub.

“I think I broke your shower,” Bruce says, and Wally thinks he might be right when he hears another tile crack.  He obviously wasn’t paying enough attention, and maybe there’s a good reason Bruce has marble in his shower instead of $1.99 pale blue tiles from the discount bath place.

“It was worth it.”

“I’ll buy you a new one.”  Bruce sounds happy and tired, and Wally reaches to turn off the cold water because Little Wally’s already retreating and doesn’t need any help.

“I don’t need a new shower,” Wally says, although maybe he does.  Tile number three hits him on the thigh.  It’s broken in three pieces, and Wally’s forgotten exactly what Bruce’s fists can do.

Bruce kisses him suddenly, tongue snaking into his mouth, and Wally knows he tastes himself there.  “You didn’t have to do this.”

“My shower, my rules,” Wally whispers.  “Besides, why should you have all the fun?”

Bruce moans and kisses him again, and Wally’s pretty sure he could fall asleep right in the damn tub, but before he can blink, he’s being hauled to his feet.  There’s a towel wrapped around him, and Bruce is pulling him towards his bedroom.  He would’ve like to give Bruce the grand tour, even though the apartment’s only three rooms and a bathroom, and Bruce is already well-acquainted with that, but there’s something nice about knowing Bruce doesn’t feel like a stranger here.

The sheets are pulled back.  Wally’s glad they’re the plain blue ones and not the set with laughing horses that he thought were a scream, but which probably belong on an eight year old’s bed.  He lets Bruce push him between the sheets and take his towel.  It seems like a fair trade for Bruce’s skin against his.

“Do you need to eat?” Bruce says, and there’s a hand brushing through his hair, and kisses against his cheek.

“I need to sleep,” Wally says.  His metabolism rules him sometimes, and he wishes he weren’t drifting away, but he is.  It’s only because he feels safe here, with Bruce, and he knows that’s important and he should tell him, but his lips aren’t cooperating.

“Then sleep.”

“Are you staying?”  He hopes the answer’s yes, although he knows his double bed’s going to feel awfully small after Bruce’s king-size.

“For awhile,” Bruce says, tucking the blankets around them and pulling him closer.  “Just until dark.  Then I have to go back to Gotham.”

Wally thinks he nods, but he isn’t sure if Bruce sees it.  All he knows is the world is warm and safe, and this is the happiest he’s ever been.


Wally wakes up hard and hungry.  He takes a deep breath and wipes the sleep out of his eyes.  He glances at the mirror and remembers there’s a reason he shouldn’t go to bed with wet hair.  It’s sticking up like a bad anime cartoon, and he’s sure he’s going to need another shower.


He takes a minute to remember Bruce being here, touching him, kissing him, and it’s still amazing that they’re doing this at all.  Wally spots a folded piece of paper on the dresser and reaches for it.  He figures it’s probably set to self-destruct after he reads it.  The Bat-family all likes “Mission: Impossible” a little too enthusiastically.

“W --
        Had to go.  See you soon.  Or I’m coming back to get you.
                                                                                          P.S.  It’s in the boot.”

Wally grins.

“I knew it,” he says to his reflection.  He also knows he’s going to leave the tracer there.  So Bruce can always find him.

Because Bruce coming to get him isn’t a bad thing at all.


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