Title: What We Want - posted January 16, 2010
Author: Lacey McBain
Pairing: Dean/Carter
Rating: NC-17
Word Count: ~4400
Summary: Of course Carter noticed the boots.
Author Notes: Set after episode 1.5, "August", skip where Carter sees Jaimie's boots at Dean's place, and realizes they've been sleeping together.
Written for [info]smallfandomfest prompt: Carter/Dean, angry sex.
Beta: Much thanks to [info]obscuranb for listening and laughing in the right places.

What We Want

"We don't know what we want, but we are ready to bite somebody to get it."
-Will Rogers

Of course Carter noticed the boots.

Actually, Dean was surprised when Carter didn't say a word to either of them that day. There was the glance, the faintest recognition registered and filed away as Dean held his breath and Jaimie, oblivious, pushed on with the discussion, absently swinging her boots off the end of the table like a giant fucking flag. Carter let it go, moved on with the op, and Dean figured that was the end of it. Between the kidnapping investigation and the reappearance of Jaimie's boyfriend, there really hadn't been much time for a proper chewing out, and Dean figured if Carter wanted to blast them on it, he would've done it already.

So, Dean felt pretty safe tripping over to Jaimie's apartment after they wrapped. Carter was debriefing Captain Maynard, then doing whatever it was Carter did after an op. Disappearing into a bottle of some kind, Dean supposed. Usually they didn't hear from him until he needed them again. Ty had gone home to his wife—Dean had dropped him at the door with a shoulder punch and a stirring of envy.

But then a half hour later, Jaimie had shut the door in his face with a look that told him everything he needed to know. Three weeks of uncomplicated fun, rough up-against-the-wall, "fuck me harder, baby" sex was done. Finito. Kaput. This time it wasn't him running from questions about commitment or "why don't you call me?", and yeah, Jaimie'd been clear from the start she didn't want anything serious, particularly not with him. Dean had the feeling he was a little too much like some of the guys she'd left behind in her old life—whatever it had been.

He'd meant it when he'd said he just wanted to talk. He wouldn't have turned down a blowjob, or riding her hard and fast, but honest-to-God watching Ty walk up his suburban driveway and kiss his normal suburban wife had made something in Dean ache a little, and if anyone would understand that empty, not quite part of the regular world feeling, he figured Jaimie would. They were two of a kind.

But he should've known she'd take her opening with the button-down Assistant District Attorney. His conservative suit and matching tie, his middle-class good looks and good family; Dean got what she saw in him, got what she wanted, and couldn't fault her for trying, but he knew she was living a lie. Expunging the records didn’t make her any less the girl who used to have a habit, or the girl who'd been happy to handcuff him to the bed and scream herself hoarse.

Dean wasn't paying attention as he ambled back down the stairs and out into the darkness. He was too busy being pissed off for no good reason at someone who'd done nothing but stick to the terms of their deal—no strings attached.

Which was why he was now up close and personal with the concrete wall of Jaimie's building, and the guy holding him knew what he was doing because Dean was stuck fast with his arms hooked behind him, and his feet spread too far to be useful.

"What do you want?" he said, twisting his face to the side, but all he got was a slap to the back of the head. Hard enough to squash his nose into the concrete, but not hard enough to rattle his brain. Huh.

"You're really an idiot, you know?" Carter said.


Dean repressed the temptation to break Carter's hold, knowing it would probably end with him looking more like an ass than he already did—either because he'd be taking down a guy who had a good fifteen years on him, or … because he'd get taken down by a guy with a good fifteen years on him.

"You seriously gonna bust my balls for talking to Jaimie after hours?"

"Talking. That what you kids are calling it these days?"

"Oh, come on, man," Dean said, still talking to the wall, Carter's grip not wavering an inch. "I was up there, like, five minutes. Give me some credit."

Carter snorted. "She turn you down?"

"I told you, I just wanted to talk, but she was busy," Dean said, and the laugh that crept out of his throat sounded bitter even to him.

"At least one of you found some sense."

Dean's arms were suddenly free, and Carter was walking away even as Dean turned around. He stared at the back of Carter's leather jacket in frustration.

"That's it? You slam me into a wall, lecture me, and walk away?"

Carter reached the black Lexus, and the lights blinked twice as he clicked the fob. "I'm your boss. It's my job."

"Fuck that, Carter. If you had your own life, you wouldn't be skulking around in alleys checking on ours." Dean knew he was pushing it, but he didn't care. Carter had the door open now, but didn't get in, just leveled a pissed off stare in Dean's direction. Good, Dean thought, and kept right on going. "Ty know that you keep tabs on him and his pretty wife? Maybe you sit outside and watch them have dinner? Maybe a little dessert?" Dean thought the leer was a good touch, and it did the job. Carter was back in his face in three steps, a fist clenched in Dean's shirt, and the muscles in his jaw were tight and angry.

"You never know when to quit," Carter said, and this close Dean could smell the scotch on Carter's breath, and hated himself a little for being right about Carter's after-ops routine.

But Carter was right about him too, and he didn't know when to quit, or couldn't make himself care enough to bother.

"You think maybe Jaimie can do better than me? Maybe a nice upstanding husband; you were awfully quick to cast her as your trophy wife today. First time I've ever seen you smile, man, when you put your arm around her—"

Maybe he wanted Carter's fist to slam into his face. It wasn't sex, but at least it was feeling something, and Dean spat out the blood from a torn lip, and smiled.

"Well, you're the boss."

Carter backed away, rubbing his knuckles, and underneath the anger Dean thought he looked a little lost. They were all so fucked up. He leaned against the wall and pushed at his bloody lip with his tongue, watching Carter's taillights get lost in traffic.

Maybe he'd still have a job tomorrow, maybe not. Right now, he really didn't care.


Carter must have driven around for a while because Dean was sitting at the office sipping scotch for a good twenty minutes before Carter rolled in.

"What, you take the long way home?"

"Wasn't figuring on company." Carter threw his jacket on the desk and picked up the bottle from where he'd left it. "Who said you could drink my scotch?"

Dean raised his glass. "Oh, is this yours? It's nice. Smooth." He took a sip and let the liquid sit on the back of his tongue. "I never figured you for the good stuff, Carter. Always thought you'd be a Jack man myself."

Carter poured himself a drink. He looked at Dean, picked up the bottle and joined him on the couch, topping up Dean's glass as he sat down. "It was a gift."

Dean's eyes widened. "Seriously? What's the occasion?"

Carter swallowed a mouthful of scotch, and leaned back into the couch. "Did you think I wouldn't find out, or did you just think I wouldn't care?"

Dean shook his head. "You're like a fucking pitbull with a perp's leg. Can't you let anything go?"

For a long moment, Dean thought about tossing back the whole glass and getting the hell out before this ended in the two of them trying to beat the crap out of each other, but it seemed like a waste of good scotch.

"I'm responsible for—"

"Jaimie's a grown-up. Nobody's getting taken advantage of. It's two consenting—"

"Yeah, I'm sure that's what it is."

Dean swallowed what he'd been about to say along with a mouthful of scotch. Of course Carter wouldn't believe Jaimie had been as hot for it as he had, that it had been her idea in the first place. They'd both known it was a bad idea, but that didn't stop them from doing it. Or from doing it again. And again.

"You know the rules, Dean. Personal attachments make you a liability."

Always the same old song with Carter, and Dean was sick of it. The job demanded everything, and Carter somehow managed to expect even more. Dean slammed his glass on the table and turned to look at his boss.

"You really want to go there, Carter? Really? Okay, what about Ty? Melissa? We already know that's a liability, yet he's still here."

"For the time-being, but maybe not for that long."

Which was news to Dean. Ty hadn't said anything to him about wanting out, wanting a change, and they'd been working together a long time. It pissed him off that Carter knew and he didn't, but then again, everything Carter said tonight made him want to hit him and not stop.

"Since when?"

Carter didn't answer the question, just kept on talking as if Dean hadn’t said a word.

"Ty's got a good thing. Can't blame him for not wanting to risk it, but for now, he's hanging in, making it work."

"You can't put him under and expect him to get with a woman if that's what the job takes; he won't do it." Dean knew if he was making the decisions, Ty would've been gone as soon as he'd married Melissa. "All he wants these days is a clean bust. No risk, no danger. You put him back in uniform, he'd probably be happy."

"You think so?" Carter asked, swirling the liquid in his glass.

"Nah," Dean said truthfully. "It's what Melissa wants. Ty's always liked the game, but she's got his balls in a vice. What's he gonna do?"

"Yeah," Carter said, thoughtful, and Dean thought this was the closest they'd had to a real conversation in a long time—more evidence that their working relationship was truly spectacularly screwed.

Carter poured Dean another finger of scotch, pushed the glass towards him with the edge of the bottle. "No point wasting it."

"Ever hear of saving something for a rainy day?" Dean asked, but he took the drink that was offered. They didn't get a lot of rainy days in their business; happy futures were for other people. They had late nights and pimps and arms dealers and coke heads. Every day was another chance to get shot or beat up or worse, and sometimes they didn't make a tiny bit of difference, but Dean still wouldn't want any other job. Whatever the cost.

He took a breath, and dived in again. "Look, I know you worry about us," and he punched Carter in the shoulder when he rolled his eyes at him. "You do, and I get that's why you're pretty much an asshole, but you really think me and Jaimie screwing around is going to mess us up?"

"Yeah, I do."

"Come on, man, get real. If anything, it's going to make me pay more attention to what happens to her." Dean didn't want to admit it, but he already knew what three perfumes she wore, the days when she washed her hair or didn't by the scent of her shampoo, how she liked her coffee. He told himself it was being a good operator, noticing the details, but it had happened without him even having to think, and that wasn't the job at all.

"And that's a problem." Blue eyes were looking straight through Dean, and he leaned back and swiped a hand over his mouth. Carter was fucking uncanny about reading them all, always had been.

"Why's that a problem?" Dean wasn't sure he'd ever understand where Carter was coming from. It was like he'd shut off a part of himself and there was no way he was letting anyone in again. "It's part of the job to care about what happens to the team, or have you forgotten that?"

Carter swallowed, but didn't look away. "The job comes first."

Dean took a drink, and he fucking didn't care if he sounded petulant. "If it were Ty, you wouldn't be acting this way."

"If you were boning Ty, I damn well would. In fact, it'd probably be easier if you were fucking Ty. Him, I know would dump you on your sorry ass if you stepped out of line."

Dean laughed because it was too goddamn funny not to. Carter obviously thought Jaimie was the one who needed protecting here. Like her second-chance virtue was worth something in their jaded world. Some day he was truly going to have to hack Carter's service record and psych evals. It was bound to be entertaining reading.

"I hate to fuck with your idea that Jaimie's some sort of innocent, but she's the one made the invitation, and she's the one who cut me loose, Carter, not the other way around. Boyfriend's back, and she's happy to pretend nothing ever happened. Harmless fun. What's a few orgasms between friends?" Dean wasn't used to being the one getting used in that kind of relationship, but he supposed it was karma after all the women he'd promised to call and never did.

"You don't have friends."

Dean laughed. "Neither do you. Guess I learned from the best." He finished his drink and set the glass on the table. "Thanks for the drink. It's been … something."

Carter stared at him like he was missing the point, and Dean was getting tired of all the bullshit. If he didn’t head out soon, he was going to end up saying or doing something really stupid.

"No, Dean, you’re not listening. Jaimie can’t be a friend, certainly not one with benefits. She's a cop, just like you, and I've got to know the two of you can do the job without letting anything get in the way."

"We can."

Carter looked doubtful, and Dean felt anger welling up like his broken lip and bruised ego. It was fine when he'd thought Carter was being protective of Jaimie—stupid and ass-backwards, but fine, because at heart Carter should've been somebody's dad instead of a police lieutenant, and he was goddamn awful at admitting anyone mattered. But this was something different. Carter's eyes said he didn't trust him on this. Not to keep it in his pants, or do the job, or be professional, and that was a completely different thing because as much as Dean might be a screw-up in relationships that didn’t involve guns, he was a fucking great undercover cop and he knew it, and Carter damn well knew it too.

Dean shook his head and turned toward the exit. “Fuck you, Carter.” He got halfway there, then strode back. Carter met him where the single light faded into shadows, and for a moment they stared at each other, breathing hard, and Dean wondered who was going to throw the first punch. Maybe it was time.

He looked Carter in the eye, and laid it out for him. “You know what? You’re wrong. Dead wrong. You think this works because we’re outside the department, because we’re looking at the law and only the law, no ties to anyone. But that’s crap. The only reason this works is because we’ve got ties. Maybe not to the department, but to each other. We trust each other. If I didn’t care about Ty and Jaimie and even you, you bastard—”

Carter smiled, the same kind of smile he used on drug cartels and murderers he’d just busted. “You think that’s enough? You think if we hug it out, we’re better cops? By that logic, we should all be getting it on for the greater good.”

Dean shook his head in disbelief. “Your head is a scary place.”

Carter leaned forward, and Dean willed himself not to back away because Carter never would. “Yeah, maybe that's what we should do. Call it team-building or trust exercises, or whatever the hell the psych guys are labelling it these days. A good fuck might make you listen up when Ty tells you something's not going to work, or when I tell you to keep your head in the game. Would that help? If we were fucking, would you care that you're risking your life when you act like a cowboy out there?"

“Is that what you want?” Dean asked, and he was already getting hard thinking about the answer. Carter was angry, not for-the-job angry, but deep-down pissed off and ready to come out swinging, and Dean felt the anticipation of a fight all the way down to his toes.

“You knew the rules coming in. You don’t want to follow them, you can leave.”

“You’re a fucking hypocrite.” They were almost the same height, and Dean didn’t give a damn about personal space at the moment because Carter could piss him off like nobody’s business. “You’ve got nobody, so you think we should all suffer right along with you. When’s the last time you got laid, Carter, huh?” Dean put a hand on Carter’s arm, not surprised when he shook it off and took a step back. “When’s the last time you let somebody who wasn’t trying to kill you or con you get this close?” Dean took another step, and Carter matched it like they were doing some kind of dance. “Maybe you should worry less about my sex life and more about your own.”

Carter looked away, just for a second, and Dean pushed closer, lowering his voice to something dark and dirty. “You’re so damn jealous you can’t even see straight. It all too much for you, sitting here in the dark and thinking about me and Jaimie doing it? You want it to be you?”

“Don’t push me,” Carter said, his voice strained, muscles tight, and through the tension Dean could see the guy who always had his back, who’d protect his ass to the fullest extent of the law, and then some, because Carter cared about him, all of them, probably more than he cared about himself most days. It was like a revelation, and Dean couldn’t believe he’d never realized how Carter tried to keep them at a distance because he was so damn afraid of getting hurt again. It was there in his eyes, in the very fact he was retreating when Dean had never known him to back down from anything.

“You stubborn son of a bitch,” Dean said, and this time when he reached for Carter’s arm, he anticipated the shift, and held on, locked his other hand on Carter’s bicep.

Dean expected the shove, two-handed and hard, sending him three steps backwards into the nearest wall, but he hung on, dragging Carter with him, and it was no effort at all to hook an arm around Carter’s neck, a leg around his calf, and hold him there, angry and caught.

“You don’t want to do this,” Carter murmured, low in his throat, and Dean’s body, never too fussy about who was pressed up against him in the dark, immediately disagreed. Apparently he wanted this more than he’d thought; he’d just always figured Carter was completely out of bounds, and, well … straight.

“Maybe you should stop telling me who I can sleep with.” Dean shifted his weight, pulling Carter with him, a thigh moving between his legs, and Dean wasn’t the only one who was hard. That close, in the half-dark, with Carter’s uneven breaths on his face and silent need in his eyes, it felt like permission. “Clearly, you don’t know what the hell you’re talking about.”


“Shut up,” Dean said, and kissed him hard, hard enough to convey how absolutely necessary this was, and Carter didn’t so much kiss back as bite him, drawing blood from his split lip, then soothing it lightly with tongue before opening up and kissing him properly, wide lips and warmth, wet and needy, and Dean felt every inch of Carter’s bigger frame trapping him against the wall, and it was all good.

Holding Carter wasn’t necessary anymore. Dean was damn sure he wasn’t going to run, not with one hand running over his abs to twist his nipple, make him arch away from the wall with nowhere to go but closer into Carter, and the other hand working open Dean’s pants with desperate efficiency. He felt almost dizzy, Carter’s tongue fucking his mouth, expert and experienced, and maybe it had been a long time, but that hadn’t affected Carter’s ability to focus or do the job, and right now Dean figured he was going to embarrass himself like a horny teenager in under five minutes if Carter didn’t stop doing that thing with his tongue.

Dean wasn’t the best undercover operative in L.A. for nothing, and while he tilted his head to give Carter better access to his neck—Jesus Christ, he was going to have stubble burn and hickeys to explain tomorrow—Dean undid Carter’s pants and shoved them down, briefs and all, not caring they hindered Carter’s movements or looked ridiculous, just wanting to feel that heavy flesh in his hand. Carter was hard and leaking, and gasped when Dean stroked him tentatively, then again, and soon it was a race to get their clothes out of the way, stumbling, still kissing or biting, or whatever the hell they were doing with their mouths that felt so fucking good, back to the couch. There was a momentary struggle to determine who came out on top, but Dean couldn’t honestly say he cared at this point, and let Carter roll him on his back, straddling him with their cocks lined up, slick and lovely, Dean’s hand helping keep them tight, while Carter ground their hips together, finding a rhythm that made Dean arch and Carter swear, an eloquent stream of expletives peppered with Dean’s name, and he laughed because it was weird and goddamn sexy at the same time. He shut Carter up with a bite to his shoulder, a line of kisses up his throat, then there was nothing except heat and the slide of flesh, grunting and rutting against one another until first Dean, then Carter, came, sticky and satisfied, still reeling from the shock.

Dean was breathing hard. He could feel Carter’s shaky breaths against his chest, their groins warm and wet with mingled cum, and he tentatively ran a hand through Carter’s hair, ridiculously thick for a guy pushing fifty, and maybe this was the stupidest career move he’d ever made, but maybe it wasn’t.

It took a minute for Dean to realize Carter was mumbling into his chest, and Dean rolled his eyes and resisted the urge to slap his boss senseless because this was exactly the reason none of them knew what the hell was going on in Carter’s brain. He didn’t tell them anything important that they couldn’t figure out on their own, and Dean opted for biting Carter’s ear—gently—until he lifted his head and looked him in the eye before dropping back to Dean’s chest, muttering, “We’re so well and truly fucked,” and Dean knew Carter didn’t mean it in the good way.

He knew laughing wasn’t the appropriate response, but he couldn’t make himself stop, and with his legs and arms wrapped around Carter, there really wasn’t anywhere for him to go that didn’t involve leveraging both of them onto a cold, hardwood floor. So Carter propped himself on one elbow and said, “Why the fuck are you laughing?” and Dean reached up and kissed him, soft this time and deep, so maybe Carter would get that being close didn’t automatically mean either of them was going to get hurt or need to start looking for a new job.

They might have slept after that. Dean lost track of time until dawn was creeping across the floor and his back was aching from the stiff leather couch and 200 pounds of Carter still mostly draped over him.

“Hey, sun’s coming up,” Dean murmured and Carter nodded against his sternum and rolled off, stretched and headed for the bathroom. He turned around once, gave a look that was halfway between an order and an invitation, and Dean grinned and scrambled off the couch saying, “yes, sir, coming sir,” until Carter bit his lip again and shut him up. Dean didn’t have a clue what this was or what it could be, but it was part of why this unit worked, and he wasn’t stupid enough to question it when Carter was murmuring filthy promises in his ear under the pounding water.

They got dressed and Dean started cleaning up the mess from last night, picking up clothes and glasses while Carter did something that involved shuffling papers and tapping occasionally at the computer keyboard. He was humming—a halting and off-key rendition of something Dean couldn’t place, but suspected was from an era of music he didn’t listen to. Dean had to bite his tortured lip to keep from grinning and making a snide comment that would either end in getting his jaw cracked or more sex. At this point, he figured the punch was more likely, and there was no way he was going to be responsible for screwing up Carter’s decent mood. It was such a rare thing.

Dean picked up the almost empty bottle of scotch, and finally thought to ask, “What was the occasion?”

Carter looked up, his face more open than Dean had ever seen it. “It was my birthday.”

It figured, Dean thought, and he shook his head at Carter, who shrugged it off and said, “It was better than most years.”

Dean blinded him with a stupid grin, quick and honest enough to make Carter laugh. “Okay, okay, get the hell out of here,” he said, but Dean merely planted himself in front of the desk, full of bravado and hope.

“Make me.”

Yeah, things were going to be just fine.


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