Because Lance is a good and honest soul, he has no decent excuse to get out of this.
(Even if he could use the health seminar credits.)
It's essentially blackmail into hosting "Free Condom Friday" in promotion of safe sex education—which meant sitting for all hours, on a fold-out chair with cramping legs. And being an attraction to people snickering behind their hands at the oversized bowl of colorful squares.
In a way, Lance wishes and doesn't wish he had to endure the humiliation alone.
Merlin doesn't really feel shame.
He watches in morbid fascination as Merlin expertly unrolls a neon green condom onto one of the bananas.
"… What do you think you're going to do with that?"
Merlin's purposeful, sideways look just oozes mischief.
"What do you think I'm going to do?"
Lance sighs, raking his fingers through his hair and shoving it out of his face. He needed it cut soon. The dark brown strands were nearly to his chin.
"Merlin, I don't want to see you put that down your throat," he says outright.
Because subtlety also wasn't in Merlin personality, nor being chaste-minded. Lance has seen a number of things get deep-throated by Merlin … simply because Merlin loved an audience.
Merlin huffs out a laugh, tilting back in his own metal fold-out chair.
"It's not the worst thing that's been in there," he comments idly, glancing up at the person approaching the table.
Immediately, the condomed banana passes Merlin's lips, dangling out.
"Speak of the devil," he muffles, grinning with the object still clenched between his teeth.
Even with Arthur's upper lip giving a sneer, Lance is curious to why the normally unflappable Arthur Pendragon turns so red.
"What the hell are you doing?" he barks at Merlin.
Merlin shrugs as if completely innocent, mouth bulging with fruit and lifting his arms to cross behind his neck. He spits the neon-green banana onto the table. It bounces onto the floor.
Lance's mouth twitches up as the other man curses and scrambles for it.
"What else does Merlin do but fool around?" he replies softly, gazing at Arthur.
With Lance's attention now on him, Arthur seems to temper, eyebrows less furrowed.
"How's the sprain?"
It takes an obscenely long moment. Lance stares blankly until it clicks. Right, he had injured himself during their—his—last match.
"Better," he responds. "It's, um, better with rest after a few weeks."
Arthur's knuckles rap periodically on the tabletop, and if Lance didn't know it, he thought Arthur was going to say something else. A discomforted cough escapes him.
"Good, very good," Arthur says, avoiding their eyes and quickly turning away. In fact, he practically flees.
And shite, Lance just can not keep himself from staring at his arse.
Falling for a Pendragon was asking for an early grave. An unfulfilled sexual grave.
"Ooh, he fancies you," Merlin announces at Lance's right, tuning him back in.
"How can you tell?" he asks, trying to not sound too pleased. But Merlin's doing that I'm on the top of the world, preening about a juicy rumour and sucking on the tip of his tongue.
"That's easy. I've seen the look already."
Lance narrows his eyes.
No. No way. No damn way Merlin has…
He says, uncertainly, "Have you both…?"
"I sucked him off yesterday after footie practice. Mind you, the sorry bloke almost begged me for it." To Merlin's credit, he acts very nonchalant about this. "He made me swear not to tell anyone," Merlin adds, grinning big enough to make his ears flex. "Or I'd get a thrashing of some sort. I wasn't quite sure what he meant. It probably wasn't the image in my head—"
Lance interrupts, holding up a hand. "—Merlin, you told me."
A typical 'who cares' shrug.
"I tell you everything," Merlin says, matter-of-factly. But for a moment, he looks solemn and possibly rueful, uncrossing his arms and righting his hair. "That's not going to change."
With a humored smile, Lance squeezes Merlin's shoulder.
Merlin could be a lot of things, mostly a horrendous exhibitionist, but he was Lance's friend. Merlin trusted him with his secrets, every line of his past and present, and he was honored.
"I'm glad," Lance tells him, locking their gazes.
Something always interesting happens when Lance attempts to meet someone's eyes during a conversation. They become too timid or bashful to hold it long.
Even Merlin's cheeks go slightly pink.
"Lance, if I didn't love you so much…" Merlin pauses for dramatic effect, grasping onto Lance's bigger, sandy-gold hand between his. "I probably would have buggered you by now."
"Cheers," he says deadpan, taking a sip of his bottled water.
Gwaine stops by when Lance excuses himself for the loo.
While it's a rubbish idea to leave Merlin and Gwaine to flirt through the next two hours, he desperately needs to stretch his legs.
And so Lance does, ending up at the sink and washing his hands when Arthur exits his stall.
Those big blue eyes seem to get bigger when he spots Lance. He wonders if Arthur might flee again, but stoicism returns to Arthur's expression. The other man discovers the only sink left available and pumps soap onto his fumbling hands.
"You left Merlin in charge?"
The incredibility in Arthur's voice draws a short, breathy laugh from him.
"Probably not the best idea," Lance admits, eyes still on rinsing.
He finishes, automatically shaking off water droplets, and peers at the broken paper-towel dispenser. Brilliant.
"No, it isn't," and his voice—Arthur's voice—sounds a lot closer.
Lance isn't sure when he faced him, but his damp hands clutch onto the sink's edge, nails scraping chipped, aged porcelain.
Arthur crowds him, in every feasible abstract meaning and then not so much when his body presses a hard, unyielding line into Lance. They fall heavy to Lance's sink. The lumbering pressure of Arthur's lips opens to his unresponsive mouth, thankfully going no further. Lance feels the day-old scruff on his teammate's face, like a low, sweet burn.
He presses back into sensations without thinking, grinding and arching his hips into Arthur's waiting hands, dick already thickening and craving the right kind of friction, and he…
Lance breaks apart the lip-contact, gasping.
"I know that you…"
He couldn't destroy Merlin's confidence in him, but… Arthur…
"I know," he tries again, painfully aware of his vehement erection and Arthur's erection pushed against his leg and the deafening silence. "I understand that… Arthur, you may need to feel something with someone. Whatever it is, whatever form it is."
"Do you think I'm using you, Lance?" Arthur asks, offended.
He shakes his head after a moment, Lance's heart thundering within his ribcage.
"I would like you to be honest if you were."
Arthur eyes him. "You know what happened with Merlin," he concludes, less offended.
"It's none of my business."
"You're right, it isn't."
Instead of Arthur's voice lacing with the venom Lance knows and hears often to the majority of their acquaintances, it remains easy, agreeable.
"This might be hard to believe concerning everyone's view, but I don't like Merlin."
"But… you like me?"
Arthur's features are turning that curious shade of red again.
"Is that so hard to believe?"
And shite, Lance just can not keep from smiling.
"No, it isn't," he repeats, shaking his head once more, thumbs hooking Arthur's worn belt loops.
BBC Merlin is not mine. Eli or avalonsguardian on Tumblr won an ask game and requested: Arthur/Lance - "and shit, he just could not stop staring at his ass"! I've never tried my hand at the OTP, as much as I admire it, so I hope this was a good read for everyone! Any comments/questions are always looooved! Please don't follow a oneshot. It's not being updated.