Title: Love Knot
Author: tsutsuji
Rating: M
Warnings: light bondage & m/m sex, and vaguely implied chan if you care to take it that way.
Written for Springkink round VIII, Prompt: Nov. 9, Pandora Hearts; Gil/Break, role reversal - "revenge is sweet."
Word count: 3131
Summary: Gil has learned a few useful things over the years... maybe. Like how to tie someone else up. Sort of.
A/N: I've only seen the anime, so please forgive any huge contradictions with manga canon. Assume this takes place shortly before Oz returns. This is one of those prompts that didn't have to be about sex, but I wasn't clever enough to come up with something else. ^^

"Well, I see you have learned a few useful things over the years, after all," Break remarked, frowning up at the ropes looped around his sleeve-covered wrists and the high posts of his bed.

He looked extremely displeased. Which was to be expected, Gilbert thought, but not quite what he was going for. That look of astonishment that had appeared on Break's face a few seconds ago, when Gil had shoved his way into Break's room, grabbed his wrists and tied them up there, all in the space of a startled breath - that was closer, but still not it, either.

In fact, Gil was just about as astonished as Break was that he'd actually managed to do it. All those times being tied up and tortured by Oz Bezarius had finally come to good use, he thought (and then winced). Anyway, he wasn't about to admit his own surprise at his success with the ropes - which was nothing new; he had accumulated quite a collection of things he never intended to admit to Break.

"I have the distinct impression you're angry at me, Gil," Break said, pouting up at him as if this was at least a minor tragedy. "Was it something I said?"

Gil was, or had been, angry, of course, about many things that Break had said, over the last ten years and right up to that very day. But that wasn't really what this was about.

Since the day they'd first met, Gil had found Xerxes Break to be creepy, annoying, fascinating, and infuriating, by turns, and sometimes simultaneously. It had taken him years after that first bizarre introduction to realize that he also found Break attractive, and a few more years after that to admit it - to himself. He had never admitted it to Break. Not even after the first or fifth or fiftieth time Break had indulged what he referred to as Gil's "adolescent curiosity" in various ways, most of which ended up with Gil feeling helpless and overwhelmed, a victim of raging hormones (so Break always said), while Break calmly got both of them off. And almost always, somewhere along the way, with Break bringing up the name of Oz Bezarius during the proceedings, as if he thought it would help - as if he was certain Oz was all Gil ever thought about.

Well. He was, in some ways. At least, his long-missing master was seldom very far from Gil's mind. The memory and hope of seeing Oz's smile, of saving him, was the only reason he found it bearable to live on at the Nightray house, and the only reason he continued to do all the other things he did for Pandora and much of what he did for Break.

But somewhere in those ten years since the day he lost his master and gained a one-eyed mad hatter, Oz Bezarius had stopped being the only reason for being around Break. So it was damned infuriating when Break kept acting like it was, and like Gil only breathed for Oz and Oz alone.

There were other reasons he did things. Sometimes. Showing up in Break's room unexpectedly in the middle of the night and tying him to his own bedposts before either of them knew what he was doing - this was definitely one of those times. This definitely didn't have anything to do with Oz.

Just like it wasn't just adolescent curiosity (he was way over 20 now, for heaven's sake) that pushed him down onto his knees straddling Break's legs on the bed. Conveniently, the man had not been actually in bed when he had burst into the room, only lying there on top of the neatly made bed with his arms behind his head, eye closed and the bedside lamp still burning, presumably thinking or maybe resting from whatever exertion he'd put himself through that evening. (Gil had sometimes wondered if Break ever really slept.)

Less conveniently, he was still dressed. Holding his gaze with a scowl, Gil reached back and shoved one of Break's boots off and let it drop to the floor.

Break's eyebrow went up again. "Ooho, this is interesting! What exactly are you planning to do with me like this, anyway? You're not really planning to....?" he said, letting the words trail off suggestively.

Gil glared at him.

"What do you think?" he growled. He pulled off the other boot and tossed it off the bed, then he settled with one knee in between Break's legs.

Break's eye widened. Then his pouty, disgruntled look dissolved into a much more familiar and annoying grin.

"Ah, is Gil angry because I've been neglecting his worldly education? I know it's been some time, but honestly, Gilbert, I assumed the ladies in town were keeping you occupied in that area these days. Perhaps I was too optimistic about that...you being you... "

Gil glared harder at him. Break tittered, obviously assuming that this meant he was right, and that Gil hadn't made any progress with "the ladies." He was only partially correct; Gil hadn't tried to make any progress with the ladies. He'd barely noticed that some girls seemed to have an interest in him. Another thing he didn't need to admit to Break.

"That's not the problem," Gil said.

"Oh? Then whatever could it..."

Gil thought of saying "shut up," but decided to take the more practical route of dropping down on top of him and kissing him quiet instead. He still made muffled sounds - an mmf! of surprise followed by a sort of 'aha I expected as much' chuckle - but at least he wasn't talking.

He tasted the same as ever - sweet, dry, and warm, like sherry, or some fruity kind of tea. It made Gil realize just how long it had been since he'd sampled that distinctive flavor, all the time lately that he'd been so occupied with the supposedly impossible task of contracting Raven, and watching over the Nightray household, and gaining control, at last, of the power that might save Oz. He knew he'd missed this. Tasting it again, he discovered he missed it even more than he realized. Much more than he liked to admit, naturally.

It was a few seconds before Break started really kissing him back. That might have been surprise, Gil thought, and tried not to listen to the doubt that told him it was reluctance and that Break really didn't want him here at all. But when he finally did respond, it was with as much skill and enthusiasm as Gil remembered.

It was wonderful. He didn't realize how much he'd wanted this kiss again - and the scent of Break's skin, and the feel of the older man's body stretched out against his own - until his head started to spin with it. Blood rushing right to his groin, he started mindlessly clawing at Break's clothes, and his own, scrambling to loosen both of their trousers at once. He didn't usually have to do all of this himself; Break's hands were far too clever about undressing him thoroughly (but only as much of himself as he cared to, which often wasn't as much as Gil would have liked...) but Break's hands were otherwise occupied at the moment.

It took a few seconds before Gil really remembered why he'd felt it necessary to tie Break to the bedposts in the first place, and to realize that Break was already trying to regain control of the situation simply by kissing him senseless. It took a few more seconds for him to decide that this really wouldn't do.

He pulled out of the kiss sloppily, and pushed up on one arm above Break, with the other hand still determinedly working on Break's trousers.

Break stared up at him with one heavy-lidded, red eye, and for a second, Gil thought, he looked dazed, as if maybe that kiss had got him all breathless and dizzy, too. But before he could even be sure, the slightly dazed look turned into a grin, and Break wiggled his dangling fingers in the air.

"I could help, you know," he suggested.

But at that moment, Gil succeeded in getting his hand around Break's already fairly good-sized erection. And the look of helpless surprise that crossed Break's face just then, well, that was a lot closer to what Gil was going for.

"I don't need your help," he grumbled.

And (for once) it was true, because, just as Gil had somehow learned how to tie a person up in ropes when he'd been the one tied up by Oz Bezarius, he'd also learned exactly what Break liked, what made him hard and what got him off - even while he was the one distracted and overwhelmed by what Break was doing to him.

So he did everything he could remember, everything that came back to him as he remembered Break's scent and his touch and the sounds he always made, only it was all a little different now. He was as tall as Break now, lying stretched out over him, and his hands were larger, and he was stronger - he was Raven, now, not just little Gil anymore.

But more than that, it was different because he could watch Break's face when he licked under his ear, when he stroked him with just the right slow twist of his hand. When he bent down to kiss Break again, the sounds the older man made were different; instead of coaxing, teasing words and pleased sounds for his own pleasure, they were muffled little moans in his throat, as if he was trying not to let them all out.

When Gil finally paused and rolled back to remove his own clothes, Break's gaze was definitely unfocused for a few seconds, before he caught himself and made the effort to revert to his usual cynical grin. His eyebrow shot up again when Gil grabbed a small bottle out of a pocket before tossing the last of his clothes aside.

"You're really going to do that to me?" he said. He sounded amused, but not at all unhappy about it.

Gil glowered at him, which just made him grin even more widely. Of course, Break had also taught him how to do this to him, but always under his own terms, usually with Gil flat out on the bed and Break humming happily, grinning like a mad clown as he lowered himself onto Gil - and usually, at that point, Gil lost track of the details. But he remembered enough to know how to get Break ready for him, and he didn't skimp on any of the preparations.

And now that Break had managed to imply that he might not be capable of doing it like this, well, of course, he had to. Although, goading him on like that - knowing Break - may have been the point.

In fact, he could tell that Break was getting a little impatient, and trying very hard not to show it, before

Gil finally pushed his knees back and settled in between them.

With his wrists still tied to the bedposts, Break didn't have much leverage, and he squirmed around a bit trying to get it. Gil wasn't giving him any help on that point. He placed himself in position - hiding his own impatience, aching to feel Break's body tight and hot around him just as he remembered - and went down on his elbows, his arms under Break, twisting his hands in the shirt that Gil had left on him (just as Break had always left it on, no matter what else they were doing, and Gil only belatedly realized he could have finally had the chance to see all of Break, for once, but since that would have required untying his hands, Gil didn't bother to change that part of the routine after all).

His face hovering above Break's, watching him closely, he reached back and guided himself in - slowly. Not for Break, but to keep himself from feeling overwhelmed and lost in the sensation of the familiar, tight muscles clenching around him. He tried to watch Break's expression try not to change, but before he was halfway in he gave up on that and kissed him instead.

He felt Break stiffen under him with the effort of not reacting, but his breath betrayed him with little gasps, almost moans, into Gil's mouth. Then his body took over and his hips jerked, driving Gil all the way inside. Gil opened his eyes in time to see Break's startled expression, apparently surprised at himself, before his eye fell half-closed and he gave up and rolled his hips up again, on purpose this time.

Gil was determined to stay aware, in possession of himself, under control, no matter how good it got... and determined to watch Break be the one who was lost and desperate and overwhelmed before the end. He flexed his hips and thrust until he found just the right angle and felt Break sigh and sink into the sensation, with that expression on his face that he'd only seen looking up from underneath him before.

That was exactly what he wanted to see.

So he made sure he watched, as long as he could, holding on against the urge to screw his eyes shut and get utterly lost in the sensation of Break's body so tight and hot and solid around his, underneath him - against the urge to drop his head and nuzzle his face against Break's neck like the child he'd been ten years ago when they first met, when Break first terrified and fascinated him -

It was Break who turned away, eye closed, hair falling over his face almost enough to hide it completely, trying to muffle his cries against his arm.

"Gil..." he said, his voice high and strained through gritted teeth. "If you.. wouldn't... mind!"

It took Gil a few seconds to figure out what he meant.

"Oh yeah," he muttered, feeling red in the face, as he fumbled to reach down between them again and found Break's gloriously hard erection waiting for him. "Forgot...sorry... "

By the way Break groaned and arched up under him, he guessed the apology went unheard. But then he finally, finally got to see it when Break threw his head back with a long, whining, panting sigh, and his cock pulsed hot and spilled out in Gil's hand.

And all Gil could think was that he was beautiful like that and how it wasn't fair that it didn't mean anything to him that Gil thought so.

Then, somehow, Break moved under him just right - and he ended up helpless and overwhelmed after all, gasping against Break's neck as he came, so long and hard he began to wonder if he'd ever get his breath and heartbeat back to normal again.

A few deep, panting, slow breaths later, he decided he was probably going to live. He also decided that all he really wanted, now, was just to stay here like this, breathing in the scent of Break's skin, with the familiar tug of Break's fingers twirling in his sweat-damp hair....

Wait, Gil thought, eyes flying open with his face still plastered against the side of Break's neck. How the hell were there anyone's fingers twirling in his hair?

"Gil," he heard Break sigh, before he could get over the shock enough to move. "No matter how much you learn, you're still an idiot." The words were murmured so softly Gil barely heard them, and then, even more quietly: "No one should ever say that name like that, least of all you..."

The last was barely a whisper, making Gil feel guiltily certain he was not supposed to have heard it. Then he realized what it must mean, as he suddenly - vaguely, but certainly - remembered moaning Break's name over and over when he came.

Which meant, he realized with a sense of horror turning his limbs to lead, that he might have just admitted something he never intended to admit.

Slowly, he raised his head - with, sure enough, Break's hand still petting him, and the other arm lightly around his shoulders. The loops of rope dangled from his sleeves, like some new clownish fashion in bracelets.

He was afraid of what he'd see on Break's face after what he'd apparently said out loud. Prepared for terrible, triumphant glee, he was surprised to find only a sad-looking smile gazing back at him. Almost an apologetic smile, and that was definitely not what he expected, or wanted, to see.

It vanished immediately. Break just relaxed back against the pillows and settled Gil beside him, with his arm around Gil's shoulder like it was the most natural thing in the world - like they weren't both sticky and half-naked lying on top of Break's rumbled bedspread, as if they hung around together like this every night.

"You really have become very useful, Gil!" Break said cheerily - and waved his other arm with the rope dangling from it as if to counter the point.

Relieved and happy to ignore something he now wasn't sure he'd really heard Break say anyway, Gil scowled at the flapping hand.

"You mean you could have gotten yourself free anytime?" he grumbled, combing his fist through his own extremely tousled hair.

"Well, no, of course, not!" Break answered, mildly shocked. "Not while you were watching!"

He grinned as if this was ridiculously obvious. Gil almost caught himself smiling back. Instead he ducked his head, feeling the heat creep into his face as he started to think about what he'd just done. Before he could say anything else, self-recriminating or otherwise, Break whipped a blanket up from somewhere and threw it over both of them, and flopped back onto the pillow, pulling Gil in next to him.

"It's the middle of the night, you know!" he scolded. "People need their sleep! Don't steal the covers."

So, after awhile, Gil fell asleep. Sometime before he did, he realized that, for once, Break had not mentioned Oz's name this time, not even once.

When he woke up, his rope was on the pillow next to his head - completely tied in knots; it looked like some kind of big rope-knot animal, staring back at him.

Break was gone. And, he was not entirely surprised to discover, so were all of his clothes.

~~ end ~~