Inspiration: prompt: "childhood"... didn't quite fulfill the prompt but it did get me here XD
Disclaimer: If I created Inception, I would not currently be packing to head for college
Note: Just some more A/E fluff – how am I supposed to resist with these two?
When Eames enters the workshop at quarter to one in the morning, he doesn't expect anyone to be there. Why should he? With all the Mal business sorted out, Cobb isn't getting drunk off dreams after hours any longer. And the new job is a rudimentary extraction so there's no need to test some new compound. Usually everyone is more than happy to hurry home after after a long day of work, as that day had been. So Eames has no qualms making as much noise as he pleases: scuffing his feet, whistling a jaunty tune. And when the overhead, industrial lights finally flicker languidly to they reveal someone indeed still at the workshop. Hooked up and dreaming.
"Arthur?" Eames murmurs, curious. Amusement shows over his face as his fingers toy within his empty pocket (Empty of important things such as a hotel card key; his motivation toward returning that night). He wonders if Arthur had gone the way of Cobb -only able to dream with PASIV. Though he can't see Arthur caring. A smirk teases Eames' lips. The Point Man's dreams wouldn't be anything to miss, he would think, what with the sufficient lack of imagination and all. A strikingly daring thought comes to him and he strides toward where the other man is laying out on a lounge chair.
He shouldn't. It's a terrible invasion of privacy and who knows what he would be getting into. But then Eames' had never really thought anything in his life properly through before just acting on it. And, some justifying part of his mind points out, it is after all Arthur. How dangerous could things get? The needle slides under his skin and he drops off against the empty chair.
When he comes to, it takes a second for his eyes to adjust. There's brightness everywhere, shingling sunlight and then the light breaks and he can see pale blue. Eames realizes he's outside, and, now that the light isn't all-consuming, that there's color everywhere. Flowers. There are flowers all over; he's in a garden. Eyes crinkle with a smile because apparently Arthur has got some imagination after all. Eames would be the first to admit that he was not a flower enthusiast but he was sure some of the flowers growing in this garden were not real. The ones setting off miniature fire-works from the stamen, for example. Chuckling softly, he wanders on the aisle of grass winding through the garden, curious as to where he'll find Arthur.
When he does finally find the Point Man, Eames is surprising to note that he is sitting on a bench and leaning into an embrace with a woman. Now, Eames knows knows of Arthur's preferences. Even if he weren't a Forger he would have picked up on it simply from Arthur appearing to be accustomed to having something shoved up his ass. At any rate, Arthur pulls from the woman and she presses a gentle hand to his cheek. After a second, Arthur's brow knits and he glances over the woman's shoulder His eyes light on Eames and the older man spares him a smirk. Arthur rises immediately, moving toward the Forger. The woman turns to watch him go, looking in Eames' direction. She's very pretty if a good deal older than Arthur: dark brown hair in loose waves with bright hazel eyes.
"Get out," Arthur says, now standing directly in front of him.
"Taking a page from Cobb, Arthur?" he asks, nodding to the woman. "She is very lovely, though. Older as well; didn't know you were into cougars."
Arthur's eyes show confusion, most likely in response to the cultural term, before he gives a sigh. "That's my mother. Now leave."
Eames eyes light up but there's something hesitant beneath them, something a lot like concern. "Your mum? Didn't realize you had one –just thought you sort of sprung into existence fully-formed one day."
"Very clever, Mr. Eames, thank you. Now please." He gestures to Eames' belt where a gun is strapped.
Eames frowns then, one thumb running over his bottom lip in thought. "Perhaps you ought to come as well, darling. Can't have you losing yourself like Cobb, hmm?"
Arthur rolls his eyes in a manner that has come to be reserved exclusively for Eames and telemarketers. "She's not a shade. My mother is alive and well; that's just a projection." A light blush finds Arthur's cheeks but he makes no notice of it: no averted eyes, no abashed smile. Just steady, stable Arthur. "I've found that this can sometimes be better than a phone call home."
Eames has to work at not jumping the Point Man then and there, a fond smile passing his lips. "Arthur, that might have been the most adorable thing I've ever heard you say."
Arthur blinks. "I'll kill you myself if you won't leave."
"Arthur! Is that anyone to talk to a guest?" A musically feminine voice interjects, chastising. Arthur's mother has appeared behind him. Smiling to Eames, she swats her son playfully. "Aren't you going to introduce me to your handsome friend?"
Eames sends a shit-eating grin to Arthur before pulling a little bow. "Sean Eames at your service, ma'am."
"Well, aren't you charming? Apparently my son has lost all the manners I passed onto him... I'm Laura Sharpe."
"Lovely to meet you. Tell me, is this your garden? Because it is stunning." Eames steps around a barely stoic Arthur (who seems to be seriously considering shooting Eames in the stomach for a slow and painful wake-up), leading his mother off. After a soft sigh, Arthur can only follow them to the bench, looking every part a pouting, put-out son.
"Time is running short," Arthur points out not quite an hour later. "I put only fifteen minutes on the clock and I was already two hours in when you–" a pause "–dropped in."
Mrs. Sharpe hums her disappointment. "I hate to see you two go..."
Eames grin and rises, hands in his pockets. "Well, I'll depart ahead, I think. I'm afraid I did intrude so I'll leave your son to you." Pulling one of her hands to him, he drops a kiss to Mrs. Sharpe's knuckles, ignoring Arthur's eye-roll. He heads off then and, just before dropping out, hears Arthur's mother gush, "Oh, Arthur! I just want to...bake him cookies or something!" followed by a girlish laugh. Eames wakes up chuckling
He ends up waiting for Arthur to come to as well, checking his totem only out of habit. A few minutes later and the Point Man is opening his eyes, glancing around. His eyes finding Eames still there, Arthur frowns slightly and rises. "I'll thank you to never enter my dream without permission again, Mr. Eames."
"Ah, don't be sore, darling." Eames ' grin is wide and cheeky as he add, "Think your mum fancied me a bit, hmm?" Arthur doesn't reply at all and Eames takes this as more of a victory than if he had. "Think that means that you like me too, Arthur."
Arthur has finished packing up the PASIV by then and is shrugging into his suit. "Projections are not a reflection of a subject's feelings but rather reflections of a subject's feelings toward the projections persona." They walk toward the exit, Arthur a half-step ahead of Eames, in silence after that.
Eames is more than happy to break it soon enough though, with another trying grin and a question. "So does that mean you think your mum would like me in reality?"
"Well, she is something of an anglophile," Arthur retorts dryly, moving to walk further ahead. Eames just grins, tossing his totem in his pocket absently. Following Arthur comfortably into the night, he wonders if Mrs. Sharpe passed that specific turn-on onto her son as well.
AN: Hope you enjoyed. Let me know what you think; please&thankyou!^ ^