Disclaimer: the A-Team and all characters belong to Stephen J. Cannell and Universal Studios.

Author's Note: TAT may possibly be the only fandom where a non-sexual version of this has actually happened on screen.

Morning. Dust motes winking in and out where the sunlight stripes through the cracks in the blinds. Already you can feel the mercury starting to climb, but the air's less lethal out here than it is downtown; you can still breathe. Sounds are better, too. The rush and slap of the waves hitting, somewhere way down below the bedroom window; shrieks from the gulls winging their way in from Santa Barbara Island. It's different.

Face loves living at the beach. He really ought to thank the actual owners of the house, but he figures that he's taking such good care of it for them that it kind of evens itself out.

There's always the very slim chance of it being shot up if the military trace them there, like the condo in Anaheim last month, but he did pay for the damages on that one.

Warm, but not too hot yet, just luxurious. Secure, with his M911 in the nightstand. Face stretches his calf muscles, allowing his toes to peek out from beneath the sheets. In that floaty, thoughtful place where you're no longer asleep, but not quite one hundred percent awake either, he's suddenly aware of feeling an odd sensation on his feet, and his forehead creases in the lightest frown. Something slippery and ticklish. Something wet. Something lapping at them? And when he hears an inquiring little sound that might have been a whine, he thinks, Did I scam a dog? Is there a dog in the house? before considering the fact that whether he has a dog somewhere in here or not, he does have a Murdock.

Face opens his eyes and looks down the bed to meet Murdock's big dark ones. Murdock is licking his feet.

He blinks.

Murdock doesn't stop when Face looks at him, just makes a happy greeting noise and carries on sliding his tongue all over them, sniffing, dipping his tongue into the spaces between his toes. It's not that Face has a problem with waking up to Murdock either licking or panting, just that the licking usually starts somewhere else, and this panting sounds closer in nature to something smelly and shaggy than it does to a bed partner. "Ah, Murdock - " he decides to say, after a minute, and Murdock leaves his feet alone and crawls, walks, on all fours, up the bed, sleep-hair sticking out in all directions, to swipe a lick across his face that ends in a wet, open-mouthed kiss.

Face doesn't have a problem with kissing, either, or with the erection he felt bump against his leg on the way. Murdock had stayed limp when they went to bed, talking and talking in that high, fast, chaotic way that always means he's afraid of something that he's trying to bury by heaping all the words he can come up with on top of it. He hasn't spent this many nights out of the VA in a while. Face keeps a checklist of what meds Murdock says they're giving him at the back of his accounts book, but whether Murdock will actually take what he procures while they're on a mission is another matter entirely. The last time he had one of those at night he kept shaking his head in the morning as if he was trying to jump-start his brain, and the way he slept on it made Face feel uneasy; more like he'd been hit by a two by four. That one he says makes his hands shake. Fun times, Faceman! Turns choppers into rollercoasters! Both of those send his blood pressure down to somewhere around his knees. Face finds it ironic that what Murdock needs to keep him functioning in the long term stop him functioning in the short one.

Letting him have a couple of sleepovers, stay out of the hospital for too long, is like walking a tightrope. There's a window, of how long he can keep those doors in his head shut. Sometimes it's wider. Sometimes it's narrower. He wanders less when the adrenaline's running high; he can focus.

The TV hadn't worked last night; just started him going with a dozen voices and characters a minute. So Face had shut it off, steered him into the bedroom, and stripped them both so they could just feel the warmth of each other's skin. And, finally, Murdock had slept. Face always sleeps more easily himself when Murdock's there. More often than not, he gets quietly up to pop something after a hour or so of tossing and turning, but when Murdock's pressed up against his back, he sleeps well.

"Hey," he says, now, as Murdock nuzzles his jaw and licks the curve of it, "what's with you, huh?" but it isn't without gentleness. Affectionate Murdock makes him feel a lot better than twitching, wired Murdock, even if it seems like there's something a little off about it. He reaches up and ruffles the other man's hair, and is surprised by Murdock immediately pushing his head into his hand, emitting throaty little whimpers.

"Oh, Face... oh, yeah, good, good, good... just a little lower..!"

Nonplussed, Face tries scratching behind Murdock's ear, and Murdock throws himself onto Face's chest and wiggles all over him in paroxysms of joy that somehow culminate in the vigorous sucking and tonguing of his nipples. Face has sensitive nipples, and it should have felt great, and does, except - He sighs a little.

"Murdock, why are you a dog this morning?"

"What can I say, I woke up and I felt canine, I felt hirsute, I felt the call of the wild running deep in my blood and I wanted to chew on my sneakers." Murdock gives Face's nearest nipple another quick flick, and noses the sheet down further. "You got a dog toy for me hiding away?" he says, against his skin.

"I might have something you can play with, but I'd rather you didn't bite it."

"Not even a nibble, now?" Sad eyes. Murdock's real-life body hair scratches pleasantly against Face's smoother skin. Face used to imagine that another man up close would be like touching himself, except at the wrong angle, but he enjoys their contrasts; how he and Murdock are the same, yet different. Murdock always has warm extremities while Face runs cold. Where Face always feels like he's just taken his hands and feet out of a refrigerator, Murdock feels like he's come out of the hot tub. His abs are a little softer; his nipples a little smaller and darker; the angle of his cock a little different when he's hard. It had taken Face a couple tries to get things right there. Although they're pretty evenly matched, strength-wise, Murdock has three inches of height and fifteen pounds of weight on Face, and if he lies on him, Face can feel it. He doesn't mind that either. It's reassuring.

He strokes Murdock's hair again, feathering it through his fingers where it starts to thin on top. The line can be very faint and shaky sometimes, between the joke, and Murdock getting lost in it. Face shouldn't encourage him too much. It's only that it makes him feel softer inside when he can see Murdock alive and engrossed in something, just like it makes him hurt when he sees him empty and gone somewhere where he can't follow.

He capitulates. Just a little.

"If you were a dog," he says, "you'd need some serious training, you know? Stop you jumping on the furniture. Drooling all over these sheets, getting hair in the bed..."

"Dogs are programmed to seek out positive reinforcement, Face. Food, praise, play and love, and a little bit of all of them brings a whole lot of reward. We are simple beings, but with the right guidance, we can learn to be a man's best friend."

"Well, you look like you have a lot of potential, Murdock. But I haven't had all that much experience with dogs. I wouldn't know where to start."

"Basic commands."

"Stay, lie down, shake hands?"


"I'm not sure if I've got a dog-training kind of voice. All that strict but kind stuff?"

"Voice should be firm, but pleasant and nonthreatening," Murdock clarifies.

"And all I have to say is sit?"

Instantly, Murdock clambers off of him and kneels, smartly, his feet tucked beneath him and both of his palms flat on the bed before him. He tilts his head to one side a little way and looks hopeful. His cock is stiff in his lap.

Face scratches the back of his neck. Okay.

"Good dog?" he says, experimentally.

Evidently pleased, Murdock pants. He lifts a hand and puts it on Face's thigh. Face nudges it off.

"No. No pawing. And no jumping up again."

Murdock obediently retrieves his hand, grinning now. He wuffs a bit at Face. Face takes it that he's supposed to be doing some guesswork. It would be hard enough if he was actually talking to a dog, but at least then the options would be pretty limited. Food. Walk. Attention. He's not sure how far Murdock's going with this, or wants him to go. Trying to interpret the way the other man's practically bouncing on his ass, he takes a shot at it. "You want to play?" he asks, and when Murdock actually yaps just in sheer excitement, Face sits up and moves onto his own knees. "Lie down," he says, and Murdock swings his legs out and stretches onto his belly, pancaking himself, chin resting on his arm and expectant eyes looking up.

"Now roll over," Face instructs. Murdock rolls onto his back, all four limbs waving in the air. Face gives him a good rub and scratch with both hands, listening to the realistic whimpering, crooning sounds it produces. "That feel good?" He's surprised at how good such an easy action feels from his own side. There's something very nice about stroking Murdock's belly fur. He decides that he doesn't do it enough.

He tries running his fingers over his ribs, wickedly lightly, and Murdock snorts and chuckles, the effort of trying to hold his position evident in every muscle. Face drops onto his elbows, between Murdock's legs, throwing his full weight into holding the other man in place while he hunts out ticklish spots, until Murdock is howling with laughter and so hard that he's starting to leak. Face is laughing himself. His own erection is growing to something more impressive than the so-so state he woke up with.

When he stops, the two of them are only a few inches apart. Murdock lifts his head, and darts a lick at Face's cheek. Face taps him on the nose. Pleasant and nonthreatening. "No," he says, "no. Bad dog."

Murdock's ears almost visibly droop in disappointment. "You want your toy?" Face asks, and is immediately assaulted by a barrage of sloppy kisses. Tapping Murdock's nose one more time, he rights himself, and moves up again to lay against the pillows, plumping for extra comfort. Murdock rolls back over, but stays watching him from the prone position, eager and curious.

"Come on, then," Face says. Encouragingly, he pats his own leg, and feels faintly idiotic afterwards. But then Murdock is in his lap, furry, cuddly and happy, licking and mouthing his chest and his navel, and, okay, so this makes up for it, more than makes up for it. He rubs Murdock's flanks, encouragingly. "Good boy," he says, out loud.

Murdock dips lower, nosing into the hair between Face's legs, snuffling around his balls and the base of his cock. He looks up and whines, questioningly, asking permission. His eyes are dancing. "Suck," Face tells him, and his breath catches in his throat as Murdock runs the flat of his tongue directly over Face's crown before closing his mouth around his cock.

Face has never had head from anyone quite like Murdock gives it. Not such a wet, sensual love-fest. Maybe it's because Murdock enjoys it so much and does it without any obligation, only delight. He can't help thrusting up as Murdock sucks harder, but the other man takes him quite comfortably and easily, only shifting position to re-accommodate him, matching his angle to Face's. Face only realizes after they've been going for a minute or so that this is going to be completely hands-free on Murdock's part, because dogs don't have hands. Murdock lets his cock slip almost completely out of his mouth until he's only bathing the head with his tongue, then slides deeper again, twirling around his shaft as he does. He speeds up, slows down, and teases. He knows exactly what to do to Face and when to do it.

Face reaches down, stroking Murdock's hair, his shoulders, anywhere he can reach. "Good boy," he says, hoarsely, "what a good dog." He can feel Murdock's hard cock where he's straddling Face's leg, and the quivering in his muscles as he rocks and humps against it, never pausing in his enthusiastic sucking.

Face can feel how close both of them are, but when Murdock pulls back and licks deeply and broadly at his underside, right over the sensitive little knot, it takes him by surprise, and he gasps as he comes, straight into Murdock's mouth. Somewhere at the outskirts of his fuzzy perceptions, he's aware of Murdock's hips thrusting frantically. It isn't very long before their rhythm becomes juddering and erratic, spreading wet warmth over Face's leg.

They rest for a time, listening to the roar of the ocean and each other's breathing. Murdock thoroughly and meticulously licks Face clean, then rests his head on his belly again. Just being together is as good as sex.

"You okay?" he asks.

Murdock considers it; comes to a decision. "I don't think I have to stay a dog."

Face nods. "That's good," he says. After a moment, he adds, "But it was kind of fun."

Murdock lifts himself, and scoots up to sit over Face's thighs. The press of his ass and his balls feels nice. Face wraps his arms around Murdock's back. Fingers resting lightly on Face's cheekbones, Murdock gives him a slow, sweet, very human kiss.

"Who's crazier, Faceman? The crazy guy, or the guy who agrees with him?"

Face turns his head just far enough to be able to brush the inside of Murdock's wrist. He can feel the pulse point fluttering beneath the skin. Still faster than it should be right now? Too slow? Normal? Where along the line did he take over as Murdock's part-time MD? He cares too damned much.

"Not all that crazy. Maybe you just called a timeout. Dogs don't have to think about all that much, do they? They feel, and do. Must be pretty good, sometimes."

"Dogs have to do everything with their mouths, Face."

"I never said I hated you being a dog."

Murdock uses his thumb to trace Face's lips. "Just don't get too far away, huh?" Face says. Murdock kisses him again; holds the kiss, like he can ground himself in it, in Face's touch, in the smell of sweat.

They stay in bed for a couple of hours, while LA goes about its business outside. When they're both ready again, Face goes on his hands and knees and lets Murdock work him open with fingers and lube, mount him, and slide home. He never used to be able to imagine himself liking this, but he always does. Murdock's thrusts build him up to it slowly, in waves, different to pleasure in his cock.

Murdock howls when they finish. Or it might have been Face; he isn't completely sure. It's all good.