26 August 2011 @ 11:04 am
A Stable Heart, Chapter 5  
Title: A Stable Heart
Written By: [info]_alicesprings
Rating: NC-17
Summary: AU. When Luke has to hide out from the Grimaldi family, taking a job as a stable hand in Dallas seems like the perfect solution. It’s too bad Luke’s new “boss” Dr. Reid Oliver is such a jerk.
Author’s Notes: This was written for the wonderful and very patient [info]peggin for her generous donation in the auction to help Japan. I hope it’s everything you wanted! This is my first multi-chaptered fic, and given how difficult it was for me to write, probably my last! I hope you guys enjoy it. :) The fic is complete and I’ll be posting a chapter a day for the next week or so.

Massive amounts of beta love to the incredible [info]rhiannonhero and [info]cindergal!

Previous chapters: 1|2|3|4

The Judds return on Friday morning, and now that Luke knows Annie’s sick, he sees the small signs he was missing before. How she tires quickly, and how she’s weaker than a kid her age should be. She’s not even walking on her own from the house this time, her mom’s carrying her against her hip, and they both look tired and upset.

Annie half-heartedly plays with Storm and Sonny for ten minutes or so, and then says she wants to leave. She holds her arms up for Reid to take her, and he looks surprised, but he takes her and lets her wrap her arms around his neck and rest her head on his shoulder. Laura smiles sadly, and rubs Annie’s back, and Luke sees Reid’s arms tighten his hold around her little body.

Luke shoots Reid an inquiring look, but he just gives an infinitesimal shake of his head and walks them out to their car.

Luke follows, and when Laura and Annie have driven away, he stops Reid from getting in his own car.

“Hey,” he says, touching Reid’s shoulder. “Is Annie all right?”

Reid sighs, and squeezes the bridge of his nose between his fingers. “I don’t know,” he says. “I’m meeting them at the hospital now, we need to run some tests.”

Luke nods, and lets go of Reid’s shoulder. He opens the car door and slips inside, and Luke closes the door behind him. Reid rolls down the window and starts the engine, sitting with his hands on the wheel for a long moment.

“Hey,” Luke says gently. “I’m sure she’ll be okay.”

Reid nods, then buckles his seatbelt and pulls out of the driveway. Luke watches his car until it disappears around a curve, then heads back to his quarters, hoping with everything he has that Annie’s all right. He thinks of Natalie, who’s just a little older than Annie, and he wishes he could give her a hug. He sends his dad a text: Miss you guys, and tries not to feel too disappointed when he gets a reply later: We miss you too. No progress, sorry.


Reid works late that night. Luke listens out for the sound of his car in the driveway all night, but by 11:00, he’s exhausted, and goes to bed. When he gets up the next morning, Reid’s car’s still not there, and Luke assumes he must have slept at the clinic. Reid’s never not come home, at least, not since Luke’s been living here. He wonders if it’s not just standard practice for doctors, sometimes. Then he wonders if there was some bad news about Annie, and his heart pounds hard in his chest, worry settling over him like a blanket.

Luke’s not sure exactly what time he’s supposed to meet Reid for their cooking lesson. Hell, he’s not sure Reid even remembers they’re supposed to be having one, or if he’ll even be home today.

He tries not to think about it while he feeds the horses, and mucks out the stalls, then takes Sonny and Storm out to the pasture for the day.

By one o’clock, he’s showered and had some lunch, and done a pretty good job of not thinking the worst, but when he hears Reid’s car pull in, he bolts for the door and heads for the house.

Luke knocks on the back door, and Reid opens up a few moments later. He’s still wearing yesterday’s clothes, and he looks rumpled and exhausted.

“You look beat.”

Reid nods and turns, and Luke follows him down the hallway to the kitchen, where Reid’s making a pot of coffee, then leans back against the counter, rubbing a hand over his eyes.

“How’s Annie?”

Reid sighs. “I admitted her to the hospital,” he says. “She won’t be visiting the horses for a while.”

“Oh, no,” Luke says. “Is something— did her condition get... worse?”

“The tumors aren’t responding to radiation, they’re growing instead of shrinking.”

“Will you still be able to operate?”

“I don’t know,” Reid says. “I don’t know if I can.” A second later, he bangs his fist down on the counter. “Goddammit!”

Luke grabs hold of his fist. “Hey, stop that. You have to look after your hands if you’re going to save her life.”

Reid blows out a harsh breath. “The tumors are in a delicate position, it’s too risky to operate right now. If they don’t start shrinking, I may not be able to get in there at all. And if I don’t...”

“Hey,” Luke says, squeezing the hand he’s still holding. “You have to stay positive. Annie’s counting on you, and Laura, and Juan and Victoria. You can do this. I have faith in you.”

Reid snorts. “They’re all counting on me,” he says, a rising note of hysteria in his voice. “Juan, Victoria, Laura and Annie. And I’m letting them down.”

“You’re not letting them down,” Luke says firmly. “You’re doing everything humanly possible.”

“That’s just it!” Reid says. “I do what mere mortals can’t do. I’m the guy they call when no one else has the skill, or the balls to cut. I’m supposed to be better than human, but this time, when it counts the most, when it’s Victoria’s grandkid, I— I can’t...” Reid shakes his head.

Luke grasps Reid’s chin, forcing him to meet Luke’s eyes.

“Stop,” Luke says. “Stop, and take a breath.”

Reid’s harsh pants are hitting Luke’s face, and Luke tries to project calming, soothing thoughts through his expression.

Slowly, Reid’s breathing slows down, and Luke nods. “Okay, that’s good,” he says. “You need to stay calm, and focused. All you can do is wait for her to respond to treatment, that’s all anyone can do, Reid. Don’t beat yourself up about things you can’t control.”

Reid’s staring at Luke intently, his eyes blazing, and Luke realizes just how close together they’re standing. Luke would only have to move forward an inch or two, and their lips would meet. Reid seems to realize the same thing at the exact same moment, because his eyes go dark with lust, and his breathing picks up again. He licks his lips, and drops his eyes to Luke’s mouth.

Luke stares back, his own pulse racing. His skin feels prickly, his blood hot, and his dick is starting to stir.

And then something beeps.

Startled, lets go of Reid’s hand and pulls away.

Reid unclips something from his pocket, and Luke realizes it’s a beeper.

“Sorry,” Reid says, checking the number. “It’s just the hospital.”

“Do you have to go?”

Reid shakes his head. “No, it’s just an update on a patient.”

Luke nods and shoves his hands in his pockets. His heart is still thumping fast, but the moment’s lost. Luke’s not sure if he’s relieved, or disappointed.

Reid’s face shows a few warring emotions, too, and Luke decides the safest course is a change of subject.

“So,” Luke says. “I don’t know if you remembered, but we were supposed to have that cooking lesson today.”

“I remembered,” Reid says.

“We can postpone it,” Luke shrugs. “You’re probably tired. Did you even get any sleep last night?”

Reid pinches the bridge of his nose. “Not really,” he says. “Look, it’s probably a good idea if we do skip the cooking. I’m kind of crawling out of my skin right now, and would probably end up burning everything anyway. Raincheck?”

“Sure,” Luke says. “Some other time.”

Reid nods, and sways forward a little, like he’s unsure if he should move closer or not.

“I’m gonna take off,” Luke says, and Reid stills. “Let you get some rest.”

“I think I’m too wired to sleep,” Reid says ruefully. “But sure. I’ll see you later.”

Luke hesitates a second, then nods. “Bye.”

Luke goes back to his quarters and slumps down on the sofa, his mind whirring. Poor Annie. Poor Laura, and Victoria, and Juan. Luke feels awful for them, and he’s only known them a few weeks. He can’t imagine how badly Reid must be feeling, how helpless. He’d been so upset, so human just now, and Luke knows him well enough by now to know that he feels things a lot more deeply than he lets on.

They almost kissed. They would have, if Reid’s beeper hadn’t interrupted them. Luke closes his eyes, picturing Reid’s face, and the desire in his eyes, and he groans. His dick is definitely with the program now, and his face feels hot.

Luke sighs, and gets a bottle of water from the fridge, taking a deep pull of cooling water.

He turns on his laptop, and his word processing program is open right where he left it.

Lukas frantically untied Jude’s neckcloth, uncovering the soft expanse of his long, creamy neck. He latched his mouth there and suckled as he rode the hard shaft in his backside, while Jude thrust up into him from below.

Luke groans again, and slams the laptop closed. His dick is definitely paying attention, and he presses his hand against his hard-on, getting a little friction.

Luke stands up, hesitates for just a second, then deliberately doesn’t let himself think about what he’s doing. He heads back over to the house and knocks on the door. There’s no answer, and he pounds harder.

“Hold on! Hold on,” he hears, and then Reid’s there, wearing just a pair of jeans, his hair and chest still damp from the shower. “What are you—”

Luke doesn’t let him finish, just slams his mouth against Reid’s and gets the kiss he’s been aching for.

It’s good, and when Luke pulls back and presses back in more gently, and Reid’s mouth opens up, it gets even better. Reid’s mouth tastes minty fresh, and in the back of Luke’s mind he thinks that Reid must have just brushed his teeth. But then he stops thinking, because Reid’s taking control of the kiss, gripping Luke’s face in his hands and tilting Luke’s head sideways, his tongue delving into Luke’s mouth.

Luke whimpers, clutching at Reid’s shoulders, and hair, his fingers grabbing hold of a handful of damp curls and kissing back with everything he’s got.

Reid pulls back and opens his eyes, steering Luke backwards down the hall with a tight grip on his shoulders while dropping pecks against his lips the entire time. They come to a stop by an open doorway, and Reid shoves Luke inside, his mouth never straying far from Luke’s.

A moment later, Luke finds himself flat on his back on what he assumes is Reid’s bed. He’s never seen Reid’s bedroom before, and he cranes his head as Reid’s hot mouth leaves wet, sucking kisses against his neck, his fingers busily undoing the buttons on Luke’s shirt.

Luke can’t see much, just a bedside table with a lamp, and a bunch of journals and books. And then his shirt is unbuttoned and Reid’s mouth moves down to his nipple, and Luke stops thinking about anything except how good Reid’s mouth feels, lips and teeth tugging his nipple to hardness and then moving over to do the same to the other one.

Luke sinks his fingers into Reid’s hair, holding him down against Luke’s chest, and groans at how good his mouth feels leaving wet trails across his chest.

Reid tears his mouth away and kisses Luke’s mouth again, nipping at Luke’s lower lip with his teeth, sucking it into his own mouth and running his tongue over it.

Luke whimpers into the kiss, humping his hips up against Reid’s and trying to get some friction on his hard cock.

Reid presses him into the mattress as they kiss, his own hard cock rubbing against Luke’s through the barrier of their jeans.

Reid’s fingers move to Luke’s zipper, and he tugs it down, then pulls away from Luke’s mouth, leaning back to yank Luke’s jeans down.

Everything’s moving so fast. Luke’s head is spinning, and if his brain was fully engaged, he’s pretty sure he’d be running for the door right about now. As it is, Reid’s next move is to tug down his own jeans, and then he’s standing there, completely naked, his big, hard cock bobbing in front of him, and all rational thought flies out of Luke’s mind.

Reid settles back down on top of Luke, and the slide of their hot, naked bodies makes Luke shiver at the goodness of it. Reid’s tongue is back in Luke’s mouth, and his kisses are so heady, and so deep, Luke feels like he can hardly breathe.

“Roll over,” Reid says against Luke’s ear when he finally tears his mouth away.

Luke hesitates a second, but rolls anyway, settling on his front and humping against the sheets below. Reid rummages around inside the bedside table drawer, and pulls out a condom and tube of lube.

Luke’s cock is leaking, and hard as a rock, and he takes a deep breath, preparing himself for penetration. Luke buries his face in the pillow. He’s so horny, it’s been months, and he hasn’t felt this worked up in a long time. His hole clenches, wanting to be filled up.

Reid’s shuffling around on the bed behind him, and Luke tenses automatically at the thought of his thick cock breaching Luke’s hole.

He takes another deep breath, and forces himself to relax, and a moment later he feels Reid’s hands on his ass. It’s not his cock, though, he feels a second later, nudging at his hole. It takes him a few seconds to realize it’s Reid’s tongue. Oh. God. It’s Reid’s tongue.

Luke groans into the pillow, and Reid takes that as his cue to move things along. He pulls back from Luke’s hole, swiping his tongue up and down Luke’s crack a few times before returning to his hole, stiffening his tongue and spearing it inside.

Luke cries into the pillow, the sound muffled, but he can’t stop his hips from pushing back against Reid’s mouth and forcing more of his tongue inside. It feels incredible. Noah’s never done this to him, he never liked the idea of it, and Luke was fine with that. He didn’t know what he was missing. But now? Oh, God. Luke doesn’t know how he’ll live without this now that he’s had it.

Reid’s alternating between long, wet licks up Luke’s crack, and pressing his tongue inside, fucking Luke’s ass with just his mouth.

Luke’s whole body is damp with sweat, and flushed red from desire. His cock is leaking onto the sheets below, and he thinks he might even be close to coming, without even touching his cock. He’s never felt this turned on before, and he’s not sure what he wants more; for Reid to keep doing what he’s doing, or to fuck Luke instead.

Reid makes the decision for him, pulling away a moment later and slapping Luke’s cheek lightly as he tears open the condom package and puts it on his dick.

“Turn over,” Reid says, his voice rough, and Luke somehow manages to heave himself around on shaky limbs.

Reid’s panting, his chest moving rapidly. His face is shiny with spit from where he’s had his face buried in Luke’s ass, and Luke groans, throwing an arm across his eyes. It’s too much.

Reid tugs his arm away, forcing him to look, and he sees Reid slick his condom covered cock with a little lube, before coating two fingers and sliding them in Luke’s ass.

He clenches down on them, the fit too tight, and Reid pulls them back out slowly, before sliding just one back in. “So tight,” he says, his voice deeper than Luke’s ever heard it.

“Sorry,” Luke says. “It’s been a while.”

Reid snorts. “Oh yeah,” he says sarcastically. “Please, apologize for being tight.”

Luke blushes at that, and looks up at Reid through his eyelashes.

Reid shakes his head, and leans down for another kiss, his fingers still opening Luke’s ass.

Luke pulls away after a while with a shaky breath, and Reid’s fingers slip out and are replaced by his blunt cock head a moment later. He slides inside in one slow, smooth stroke, and Luke can’t help but clamp down at the intrusion.

“Relax,” Reid whispers against Luke’s ear. “Open up and let me in.”

Luke groans, and takes a deep breath, relaxing his body and bearing down so that Reid can slide inside. He’s big, and Luke feels so full, so deliciously full.

He squeezes his eyes closed, trying to adjust to the feeling, and after a few moments, Reid touches a fingertip to Luke’s forehead, and he opens his eyes.

“You okay?” Reid asks, his voice gentle, and concerned.

Luke nods, his hair scraping against the pillow. “Yeah, yeah, I’m good.”

Reid nods, and pulls out slowly, until just the head of his cock is still inside, the widest part stretching the rim of Luke’s hole, then he slides back in, just as slow and smooth. Luke exhales, and starts moving his hips up, meeting Reid’s strokes, and it stops hurting and starts feeling amazing instead, really, really fast.

Reid kisses him, his body still moving steadily, and Luke smiles into the kiss, darting his tongue out to lick at the sweat on Reid’s upper lip. Reid smiles back, the slight gap between his two front teeth striking Luke as ridiculously cute in that moment, and he laughs a little.

“What’s so funny?” Reid asks, confused, but still smiling.

Luke just shakes his head and slings his arm around Reid’s neck, pulling him back down for another kiss.

Reid’s fucking him faster now, his hips snapping with each thrust. Luke’s panting, he can’t get enough of Reid’s mouth, and his kisses, and he can’t stop touching Reid’s skin, which is silky smooth and damp with sweat. His hair’s damp with it, too. The curls along his hairline are dark and wet, and Luke can’t stop looking, he can’t stop touching.

Reid shifts his angle on his next stroke, and pushes back in, and then Luke’s crying out, because Reid’s cock is raking across his prostate, and Luke’s seeing stars.

Reid pulls out and then thrusts in again, hitting the spot on each stroke. Luke can’t think, he can’t breathe, he’s just a shivering, sweaty mess of sensation, and he’s so worked up, and so horny, it only takes a couple of strokes of Reid’s hand on his cock before he’s coming hard, in thick spurts on his belly. His toes curl, and he feels the orgasm slam through his entire body, and it’s so, so good.

Above him, Reid’s still moving, picking up the pace and fucking into Luke’s ass hard and fast. A few strokes later, he groans loudly as his own orgasm hits him, and then he collapses against Luke’s chest, smearing Luke’s come between them, and burying his face in Luke’s neck, his harsh pants hitting Luke’s collarbone.

They lie there for a few minutes, until their breathing levels out, and then Reid reaches down and holds the end of the condom as he pulls out.

Luke winces a little at the withdrawal, while Reid ties the end of the condom and tosses it somewhere over to the side of the bed.

He collapses on the bed next to Luke, swiping lazily at the remnants of Luke’s orgasm smeared on his chest.

“Well,” he laughs. “That was one hell of a way to get rid of some nervous energy.”

Luke turns his head on the pillow and catches Reid’s eye. His lips twitch, and Reid grins, and a second later, they’re both laughing.

Reid turns on his side, and nudges Luke’s hip until he does the same, then he spoons in against Luke’s back, his legs slotting in behind Luke’s, pulls the sheet up over them both, and falls asleep.


When Luke wakes up, he’s momentarily disorientated by the unfamiliar surroundings. Then he remembers. Reid. Kissing. Reid’s tongue in his ass. Sex. Really, really good sex. His ass is a little sore, and he feels sticky and gross, but he also feels warm and safe, tucked in against Reid’s chest, with Reid’s arm wrapped around him.

The room is dim, and Luke guesses a couple of hours have passed. He shifts as carefully as he can, not wanting to wake Reid up. He was up all night and he needs the rest. Luke turns around without dislodging Reid’s arm, and studies his sleeping face. He looks softer than usual, with no frown lines wrinkling his forehead, his mouth lax, and his body relaxed.

Luke smiles, drinking in the sight of him. His hair’s messy from where Luke grabbed it while they were kissing. He’s handsome, and strangely funny, surprisingly human, and brilliant, and Luke’s slept with him. He can hardly believe it himself, but the twinge in his ass tells him it’s true. Luke has never been with anyone except Noah. Until now. But now there’s Reid Oliver. He thought he’d be more freaked out, but he’s not. Maybe he’s just too sated to even contemplate freaking out. His body’s practically humming with contentment, but as he watches Reid sleeping, his dick starts to stir again, wanting him again

Luke sighs and slides closer on the pillow, until his nose nudges Reid’s forehead, and he takes a deep breath, inhaling his scent. Reid stirs, and Luke slides back away, not wanting to wake him up, but it’s too late, and his eyes blink open sleepily, then soften with a smile when he sees Luke. “Hey,” he says quietly.

Luke smiles back. “Hey,” he whispers. “I didn’t mean to wake you.”

“S’okay,” Reid says, then clears his throat, rousing himself awake. “Hey,” he says again, and leans in for a kiss.

Luke and Reid stare at each other for a while, then smile like a pair of dopes. Luke shakes his head and laughs, and then crawls on top of Reid, flattening him into the mattress and dragging his now hard cock against Reid’s, which has also hardened again.

They kiss, wet and deep, as their hips circle together, their cocks rubbing against each other, and then Luke slithers down, pulling the sheet away as he goes, until Reid’s exposed, and his tight, hard body is on display. Luke licks his lips, then grasps Reid’s erection in his hand, ducking down and licking around the head of his dick a few times before descending and swallowing him in with one long suck.

Reid grunts, and his hips push up off the bed, almost choking him. Luke grabs his hips tightly and pushes him back down against the mattress with a strong grip, and Reid grunts again, but stills, and lets Luke suck him at his own pace.

Luke sets up a steady rhythm, loving the feel of hard cock in his mouth. Reid’s cock is pretty. It’s thick and his skin is flawless, stretched tight around his hardness, and Luke loves the weight of it in his mouth.

Reid’s panting above him, his defined abs quaking with each of his breaths. He grips Luke’s hair in one hand and pushes him off. “Turn around,” he says. “Sixty-nine me.”

Luke groans at the thought. Just like his story. Luke scrambles to turn around, his hard-on hovering above Reid’s head. Reid grips him and swallows him down, and Luke’s body shakes with pleasure. Reid makes a sound, his mouth full of Luke’s dick, and humps his hips up a little. Luke takes the hint, and leans forward, swallowing Reid back in, and they set up a delicious rhythm of sucking each other in tandem.

Reid easily takes Luke all the way into his throat, and Luke moans around Reid’s cock in his mouth. He knows he won’t last long, not like this, with Reid’s talented mouth and lack of a gag reflex.

Luke increases the movement of his mouth, wanting to get Reid off first, and he jerks the shaft with a tight grip as his mouth focuses on the head of Reid’s cock, lapping at the pre-come at the tip, and digging his tongue into the slit. Luke massages Reid’s balls with his other hand, and speeds up his strokes, urging Reid to shoot. A moment later, he does, pulling off Luke’s cock with a loud grunt, his body stiffening beneath Luke.

Luke gives him a moment, then wiggles his hips, anxious for his own orgasm. Reid sucks him back in with renewed vigor, his hands massaging Luke’s ass cheeks as he works Luke’s cock. Luke rests on his elbows, his ass push backed as he fucks Reid’s mouth, and it’s not long before he comes too, shooting thick streams down Reid’s throat as he swallows every drop.

Luke collapses, spread eagled, his face pressed against Reid’s thigh as he pants and shivers through aftershocks.

Reid’s hand lands on Luke’s ass with a gentle slap, and he lazily rubs Luke’s cheeks.

Reid’s voice is husky, yet teasing. “This is some view, Mr. Walsh.”

Luke stiffens, and immediately scrambles away, sitting up and drawing the sheet back over them.

“You okay?” Reid asks, a note of concern now in his voice.

“I’m fine,” Luke says. Hearing Reid call him Mr. Walsh, even in a joking way, has thrown a bucket of cold water over him. He leans over the side of the bed and scrabbles around for his underwear, pulling it on, and then his jeans.

“You sure you’re okay?” Reid asks again.

Luke nods. “It’s late,” he says, pointing to the window where the light has faded. “I have to bring the horses in for the night, get them fed and stuff.”

Reid nods. “Okay,” he says. “Come back afterwards and I’ll feed you.”

Luke smiles, despite himself. “I thought you didn’t cook?”

“You’ll just have to wait and see,” Reid smirks.

Luke buttons up his shirt, and swipes a hand through his hair, which is no doubt a total disaster, and hesitates.

Reid sits up and grabs a fistful of Luke’s shirt, dragging him down for a kiss before letting go and falling back against the bed. “Go on,” he says, and Luke nods, closing the bedroom door behind him. He exhales, and sags against the door for a moment before shaking his head. He has horses to look after.


Luke gets the horses squared away for the night, and takes a shower, scrubbing away the dried semen flaked on his chest, and washing his hair.

He stares at himself in the mirror while he brushes his teeth, thinking about what needs to be done, then pulls on clean clothes, pausing on the threshold. He has to tell Reid the truth. He can’t lie, not anymore. Not after what they’ve done together. Reid’s gonna be pissed that Luke lied, but he just can’t keep it a secret anymore. He likes Reid too much.

He takes a deep breath, then heads for the house, and knocks on the back door.

“Come in!” Reid calls out, and Luke follows the light down the hallway to the kitchen, where Reid’s assembling a couple of huge sandwiches. He’s showered again, too, his hair’s damp, and he’s wearing a t-shirt and sweatpants. Luke’s never seen him dressed so casually, or seen him this relaxed. He smiles widely when he sees Luke, and Luke smiles back.

“Sandwiches?” Luke asks skeptically.

“You haven’t tried one of my sandwiches,” he says smugly. “They’ll change your life.”

Luke snorts, and pulls out a stool, watching as Reid finishes putting them together.

“Horses all tucked in?”

“Yeah,” Luke says. “I read them a goodnight story and everything.”

Reid snorts, and slaps the top slice of bread on both sandwiches, sliding a plate over to Luke, and then heading for the fridge.

“What do you want to drink?”

“Soda’s fine.”

Reid grabs their drinks then sits next to Luke. “Dig in,” he urges.

Luke picks up his sandwich, and a slice of tomato falls out and lands on the plate. “There’s too much stuff in this,” Luke says, trying to maintain his grip without losing any more fillings.

“Tsk tsk,” Reid says, picking his own sandwich up with a practiced hand, none of his ingredients falling out. He takes a huge bite and moans appreciatively, his jaw working overtime.

Luke takes a smaller bite, and moans too, as the delicious combination of meat and assorted ingredients hits his taste buds.

“It’s good, right?” Reid says, still chewing.

Luke nods and takes another bite, and they polish off the sandwiches in silence, both of them having worked up an appetite during the afternoon. Luke’s face heats up a little and he clears his throat at that thought, taking a pull from his soda can.

Reid clears their plates when they’re done, and suggests a move into the living room. Luke nods, and follows him, settling onto the couch.

Reid sits next to him, and moves in for a kiss, but Luke pulls away.

Hurt flickers across Reid’s face for a brief moment, before he schools his features. “Something wrong?” Reid asks, his voice cautious.

Luke takes a deep breath. “I have to tell you something,” he says. “And you’re not gonna like it.”

Reid’s eyes narrow, and he looks worried, but interested. “O-kay,” he says. “What is it?”

“I— I lied to you,” Luke says. “My name’s not Luke Walsh, it’s Luke Snyder.”

Reid’s eyebrows knit together. “Is that all?”

Luke shakes his head. “I’m not really a stable hand, either,” Luke says. “I run a charitable foundation. And own a shipping company, sort of.”

“And what? You just thought it’d be fun to be a stable boy for the summer?"

“No,” Luke snorts. “It's complicated.”

“Obviously. But if you want to fill me in, I'm all ears.”

Luke bites his lip. “I’m in trouble,” he says. “There are people trying to kill me, trying to hurt my family. I needed to hide out somewhere for a while, and that ended up being here.”

Reid sits back, and folds his arms across his chest. “People are trying to kill you? What do you ship, exactly? Drugs? Guns?”

“I wouldn’t put it past Damian,” he mutters.

Luke takes a deep breath and then he tells Reid about Damian, and the Grimaldi family, and the threats that have been made against Luke. He tells him about Faith almost being mowed down in a hit and run, and the danger to his family, and all because some distant relative of Damian’s wanted revenge. All because of money — Luke’s money that he put into his foundation. He tells Reid about how he took a job with Damian’s shipping company — which was supposed to be legitimate — in an attempt to learn business, but how when it turned out not to be so legitimate after all, Luke left and returned to his Foundation, but then all the trouble started. He tells Reid about his father and grandmother doing all they can to make it safe for Luke to return to Oakdale, and how in the meantime, they decided it was best if Luke left town and disappeared, fell off the Grimaldis’ radar.

“Where the hell is Oakdale, anyway?” Reid asks when Luke’s done.

“Uh, Illinois,” Luke says. “Is that your only question?” Reid looks flabbergasted by all the information, and Luke nervously runs a hand through his hair.

“Are you serious?” Reid says, shaking his head. “Stuff like this only happens in the movies. Have you been diagnosed with schizophrenia? Should I arrange a psych eval for you?”

Luke snorts, and smiles, glad some levity’s been brought back into the heavy conversation. Reid doesn’t look too angry though, more like surprised, and Luke thinks briefly about what Noah’s reaction to him lying would be, how pissed he’d be.

“Great,” Reid mutters. “First time in years I actually like someone and he’s got a price on his head. When did my life become a mob movie? What is this rabbit hole I’ve fallen down?

“It's okay if you want me to go,” Luke says. “I’d understand. Just give me some time to set something else up, and I’ll get out of here.”

Reid shakes his head. “I didn't say I was gonna kick you to the curb. I mean, after that blow job earlier? I’d be crazy.”

Luke ducks his head, not exactly used to discussing blow jobs. Noah thought that sex belonged in the bedroom and shouldn’t be discussed outside of it.

“Besides,” Reid says. “I kind of... think you don’t suck, and I might even care about you. A very little bit.”

“A very little bit?” Luke repeats, amused.

Reid holds up his thumb and forefinger, about half an inch apart, and Luke grins.

“It’s probably best if you just stay here and keep having sex with me,” Reid says sagely. “Instead of going off somewhere and getting killed by the bad guys. You know, for your own safety.”

Luke bites back the smile that’s threatening to engulf his face.

“For my own safety?” Luke repeats.

Reid nods seriously. “I think that’s best.”

Luke grins, unable to hide it anymore. “You’re really not mad at me for lying?”

“Why would I be mad?” Reid looks confused. “You’re in danger, you did what you had to do. And besides, you told me now.” Reid shrugs. “I’m glad you did.”

“I couldn’t lie to you, not after... what we did this afternoon. Not if we’re gong to do it again.” Luke blushes, looking away.

Reid smirks. “Oh, we’re doing it again,” he says. “And again, and again.”

Luke smiles, then bites his lip. “What about Victoria?” Luke asks. “And Juan, and Laura. I don’t want too many people to know the truth about who I am. Not that I don’t trust them, because I do,” Luke hastens to add.

Reid shakes his head. “It’s fine,” he says. “That’s smart. I don’t think there’s any harm in not telling them.”

Luke frowns. “But I hate lying to them,” he says. “I’ve hated it this whole time.”

Reid looks at him for a long moment, then nods once. “It’s safer the less people know, so we’ll keep it between us for now, okay?”

Luke nods. He’s relieved he doesn’t have to lie to Reid anymore, and he just hopes Victoria and the others don’t hold it against him if and when the truth comes out.

“You okay now?” Reid asks, his eyes concerned.

Luke smiles briefly. “Yeah,” he says. “Thanks. For being so understanding.”

Reid shrugs. “I’m an understanding guy,” he says, and Luke snorts disbelievingly.

Reid grins, and drags him close for a kiss, before pulling back. “So, you’re loaded, huh?”

Luke groans and rolls his eyes. “You are so crass, Dr. Oliver.”

Reid just grins again. “And you’re rich, Mr... Snyder. That’s kind of hot.”

“Hotter than being a poor stable hand?”

“Stable hands are pretty hot,” Reid agrees. “But truthfully, I’m actually kind of glad it worked out this way.”


Reid nods. “I’m your boss, or I thought I was. Well, I am, still, I guess. Technically. I’m technically still your boss—”

“You’re babbling,” Luke says, cutting him off.

Reid takes a breath. “I wanted you,” he says. “Almost from the start.”

“You did?”

Reid nods. “But I didn’t want to take advantage of you. You know, employer/employee relationship and all that. This is better,” he says. “We’re equals now.”

“It is better,” Luke agrees, and leans close to place a kiss on Reid’s lips. “But we’re not equal,” he says. “I’m way richer than you.” Luke grins cheekily.

Reid growls angrily, but his smile peeks out anyway as he straddles Luke on the couch, bending down to kiss him deeply.