Another fill from the meme. Prompt was: Eames plays the piano.

Disclaimer: I do not own Inception!


It is an old house, but one that has been lovingly maintained. Arthur and Eames move in quickly, since they bought the furniture, too. Something about the old-style elegance appeals to their taste, and they carefully dust and polish all of the antiques.

Arthur finds it first, the old upright in the airy room by the kitchen, what they will call, appropriately, the music room. He grins when he sees it and lifts the key cover, plinking out a note or two. "Eames," he calls. "Check it out; we've got a piano."

The forger takes his time coming down to investigate, as he always does, but he seems to smile a little more genuinely than usual when he sees the instrument. "Can you play, Arthur?" he asks, leaning in the doorframe. "Your mother buy you lessons as a kid?"

"No," he laughs, but sits at the bench anyway. "I was more for sports, believe it or not. But I did pick up a few things from a friend." He hems his way through "Mary Had a Little Lamb" while Eames chuckles behind him.

"It's out of tune," Eames remarks. "We'll have to fix that."

"If you want to." Tuning a piano is expensive, but it isn't like they're strapped for cash. Or will be. Ever. Arthur doesn't quite get the point when no one will be playing it, though.

-aaa-

Thunder crashes and the trees outside sway in a crazy dance as the wind picks up again. Arthur blinks groggily, startled awake, and then just listens. The sounds of the house are becoming familiar to him after two months living there more or less constantly. They no longer remind him of intruders, but of home.

There is another noise, below the clamor of the storm. Someone is playing the piano? Arthur sits up, alert, and turns to wake his husband. But Eames is not in the bed beside him. Arthur wonders, and he puts on his robe and goes downstairs.

The closer he gets to the music room, the more he is convinced that it is Eames on the piano, though he originally has a hard time believing his scattered, sloppy love can do something so refined as play an instrument. Then again, he reminds himself, Eames is an accomplished dancer and painter as well, skills useful in a life of high-class crime and in leisure as well.

He opens the door to the music room further, as it is ajar when he arrives, and steps in quietly. It is indeed Eames at the piano, his hands gliding over the notes with ease. "What are you playing?" asks Arthur.

Eames does not falter in his song, but he does shift a little. Arthur thinks he is readjusting, re-relaxing. "'Comptine d'un Autre Ete'" by Yann Tiersen," he says, and nods for Arthur to sit on the windowseat, which he does. "I've always found it to be… bittersweet."

"I like it." Arthur smoothes the folds of his robe down. "But I didn't know you could play."

Eames laughs quietly. "Not many do."

"Why?"

Eames lets his hands rest lightly on the keys for a moment, letting the rest extend until Arthur is afraid he won't speak, won't continue, won't resolve. But he does, letting his hands go off again. There is a pensive look on his face. "Because I like doing it. It's something I truly enjoy, and I don't like to let out that kind of information. It's a weakness."

Arthur thinks about the novel sitting on his laptop under three levels of security, and nods slowly. "Then why show me?"

"Because I love you, darling." There is a faint teasing tone, and a stronger one of disbelief. Arthur, don't be silly, you always knew is in Eames's voice. "And I trust you."

This is the first time he's said that and Arthur feels the warm weight of it tugging at his heart and at his lips, until they've curved into a smile. He comes to sit on the piano bench beside his husband – six years married – and leans on Eames's shoulder. "Then there's something I should tell you," he says, and begins to talk, dropping words like 'protagonist' and 'exposition' while he rubs his hand gently, gently, along Eames's knee.


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