Modern AU, not sure how it will pan out, but very adult references, sex and violence, and I am going to see how it goes. I also wanted a story where Arthur was a complete victim, so I made him one.
Arthur walked out from the alleyway his throat burning. It was the only part of him that was warm. He stamped his feet as he walked out and shoved his hands back into his pockets, hunching his shoulders while he watched the man with the briefcase scuttle down the street. Arthur observed him without much feeling, despite the fact the man's cock had been down his throat minutes before. But he had seen the family picture in the wallet, as the man got the money out. He had flipped it quickly closed, maybe hoping Arthur hadn't seen it, or embarrassed because he just had. Either way Arthur didn't really care, the man had gone and he doubted he would see him again. Next time the man felt an urge, he'd pick another boy. Another time he'd return to Arthur but at that point they would have forgotten each other. It was entirely possible that Arthur had encounter him before, in another silent moment, nothing more than a transaction for him, and a furtive relief for the man with the briefcase. Who would no doubt be going home to his wife and children.
Coughing Arthur turned and spat into the shadows at the edge of the alleyway before stepping out onto the street. Cars were moving by slowly, others were speeding past trying not to get tainted by the road they were going down. Arthur watched them, waiting for the next one. He needed some more to pay his rent, he was behind, and it would be better to suffer another punter than have to go to the landlord empty handed. It wasn't much money to some, the amount that he owed, but it enough to Arthur to worry him. The small room he had wasn't a lot, but he needed it, and it was the best he would probably ever have.
"Here you go, get that in your mouth."
Arthur jumped and looked at Sophia, as she was known. It probably wasn't her real name. She held out a plastic bottle. Arthur took it and swigged a large mouthful from it. She had the bottle back before he had hardly lowered it from his mouth. He held the alcohol there for a moment before swallowing it down as slowly as he could, letting it burn, removing the taste in his mouth. He gave a strangled cough.
"That's a bit more pleasant," he strained to say. Sophia laughed.
"Make it last you cheeky git, how much did you get in your mouth?"
Arthur turned to her and grinned. "More than I wanted to tonight."
She settled back against a low wall. "You've had a good run, why don't you sod off and let the rest of us have a go, pretty boy?"
Arthur sat next to her on the wall, keeping a few inches distance from her. She didn't look offended by it; in fact she shifted a little further away from him. Arthur tried to push his hands deeper into his pockets and pressed his arms against his sides.
"The rent's due," he told her.
"Ah, bit behind are you, after the other day."
"Little bit," he confessed. "And as much as I have to accept the landlord fucking me a bit over the prices, he is not doing it literally."
Sophia started to laugh. "He's a letch. I was in one of his places over on the East Road. Tried it there as well."
"I think he'd try it everywhere," Arthur told her. Sophia however, had become distracted.
"Hello, who's this one for?"
They watched the sleek dark car move slowly down the road. It stopped just as it reached their position. Arthur slouched back as Sophia stepped forward, swinging her hips as she walked. The car moved, it didn't draw away from the kerb, it just hinted as it moved six foot down. Sophia paused, one hip dropping before she turned to look at Arthur, who was the only other person in the vicinity.
"Your lucky night, pretty boy."
Arthur shrugged and got up. The car could move on the second he got close, if whoever was in it didn't like the look of him. However as Sophia stepped back and he came forward the car stayed where it was. Arthur walked to it, looking at the length of it carefully. It looked expensive enough that the punter could be sitting in the back. It wasn't always the case, but he had one every other week that had a similar car. Arthur knew whoever wanted him now wasn't him. That one always came on a Wednesday.
He paused a few steps away, only moving when the back window slid down. Pressing his hands in deeper into the pockets of his jacket he stepped forward and bent down to look into the interior. The warmth hit him first. The heating was on, it would be worth getting into the car just for that, Arthur thought. He looked at the man in the back. It surprised him, he was younger than Arthur expected, in his thirties perhaps. His hair was slicked back, but curls were falling forward around his ears. He was well dressed, in a suit, and one hand was moving nervously over the leather seat, pulling on a seatbelt clasp, in an unconscious gesture. He eyed Arthur steadily but the man inside seemed unable to continue. Arthur took in the gesture, and reticent and measured that up to decide it was this guy's first time; paying for it anyway.
Arthur smiled and decided to open up proceedings. "Hi. What are you looking for?"
The man recovered himself. "You."
Arthur raised his eyebrows, and gave his best professional smile. "That's direct enough. What part of me do you want?"
"All of you."
"I don't get in the car without getting the money first." Arthur pulled one hand out of its pocket and put it into the car. At least one limb could benefit from the warmth. The man scowled at him.
"And how do I know you don't just take the money and run?"
"You don't, you just have to trust me."
The man looked less than impressed by that, but he seemed to think and then made a decision. Reaching into the inside pocket of his jacket he pulled out a roll of notes and pulled a few off. Arthur watched him, keeping his face impassive. The man held them up, but it was out of Arthur's reach, to get them he would have to either lean in, or open the door. He looked at the money, making a calculated decision. The man looked harmless enough, and a little nervous, Arthur thought that if it came it, he could handle him. He didn't know about the driver, the front of the car was shielded by a dark pane of glass. Still, he looked back at the money, which meant the rent would be dealt with, and some left over. That wasn't a bad thing, and with that money, and the look of the guy, Arthur guessed it would be a full monty instead of a mouthful.
He retracted his arm and opened the door, sliding in, slipping over the wheel arch by the door and keeping one foot on the kerb. Arthur looked at the man, who stayed where he was. He didn't offer the money out, nor did he pull it back. Arthur reached out and took it from his hands, then slowly he moved further into the seat, still keeping by the door, which he closed and he flipped through the notes as the car pulled away. Arthur tucked the money away in the top pocket of his hoodie and he zipped it closed.
As the car started to speed down the road Arthur settled down, keeping his own space. His companion didn't seem to press that issue, although he looked at Arthur closely. Arthur settled down and smiled.
"So, do you have a name?"
"Leon," his companion responded. "And you?"
"Ryan," Arthur said casually. He never gave his real name, but he watched as Leon's eyes widened a little, then he relaxed, and settled back. Arthur watched him curiously and then felt reminded of the money in his pocket.
"There's a place you can pull up, just over here, or do you want to keep driving while I do it."
"I know somewhere else," Leon said. "It's not much further."
Arthur slid down, putting his feet up against the seats in front of him. Leon looked a little pained and Arthur slowly dropped his feet.
"I won't get out of the car unless you pay me more," Arthur said.
"No, I don't expect you to get out of the car."
"Okay," Arthur said. It sounded like a stupid rule but Sophia would have the number plate in her mind and if needs be she would call it in. It was not a perfect rule, but it was, for Arthur, hardly a perfect world.
"I have another friend with a car like this, only his has a bar."
"Press the button there," Leon said. Arthur leant forward to do that and he looked at the door that moved back and the cabinet that swung out. Arthur gawped and laughed.
"This is like something from James Bond! That is just… do you rent this car out for stag nights and shit?"
"No, I do not."
"Fine, but, can I?" Arthur asked, pointing at the drinks cabinet. Leon shrugged and waved a hand.
"Do you want something? It seems a bit rude, I'm raiding your drinks cabinet without you getting something."
"A whiskey," Leon said. Arthur smiled at him. They were getting a bit of a rapport going. If this guy wanted regular stuff, it might do him another night, not his other Wednesday. Arthur had his guy for that, he paid well, and was nice. Arthur wasn't dismissing him for someone new. But new guy, Leon, could have another night.
"There you go," Arthur said, passing over a very full glass. "Oops, I think that shot size is 'alcoholic's wet dream' size. Sorry. Can I have a go at the vodka and coke, in less biblical proportions?" He kept the conversation inane, and friendly, as if what he was doing, and about to do, in a complete strangers car was perfectly normal. Even with the worst of customers it seemed to keep them calm.
Arthur got his drink and sat down on the floor of the car, facing Leon. He glanced outside seeing the city move around them. Arthur knew where he was, always good to know. He sipped his drink and eyed Leon.
"So… are we doing it while the car moves or parking up or what? And I know you don't look weird but I don't do anything strange. What do we do now, I don't want to waste your money."
"You won't," Leon said. Arthur sat back.
"Do you want to talk a bit first, because it's not exactly big on personal information, we can do the weather, and X-factor…"
"I hate that!" Leon said.
"So do I, Simon Cowell is a glorified pimp. Not that I would want him ever managing me."
"Do you have someone that does that?" Leon asked.
"Yeah," Arthur shrugged. "He's not bad, not great, but he doesn't screw you over as bad as some others might."
"You don't talk in names."
Arthur shook his head. "No, I don't. Can I get another?"
"Of course, have what you like."
"Are we just going to talk all night?" Arthur asked as he turned to get his drink. "Because I don't mind that, but I just don't do personal talk, if you are one of those people trying to do that whole get inside the head thing. I'll fuck you, but just don't expect me to… shit!"
Reflex made him throw the drink in Leon's face. The needle glanced off his collar bone as it missed and jabbed into his chest. Leon shoved the plunger down and pushed him back.
"Fuck! Fuck!" Arthur swore as he struggled away, lashing out at him. Leon shifted away from him and then kicked up, driving his knee into Arthur's body. Arthur felt himself lifted into the air, slamming himself hard against the partition between the back and front seats. The drinks cabinet shattered as he kicked it, shards of glass splintering everywhere.
Arthur was aware of falling onto the floor, feeling the wash of liquid over his back, hoping there was no glass shards involved. He struggled up again as Leon hit the pane of glass separating them from the front.
Arthur struggled up, but his body was starting to feel heavy. He tried to pull himself up but as Leon pushed him down again he went with the force. He felt his body moved on the floor to avoid the glass scattered over it. Leon rolled him carefully, so he was lying face down. Arthur blinked, breathing heavily as he tried to get up but couldn't seem to move. Leon sat over him, talking. Arthur couldn't work it out for a moment as Leon spoke to the open air.
"Sorry, I should have put the sedative in the drinks, he'd have drunk one without hesitating. I don't think I waited long enough, I just took a chance, the drug isn't taking."
Arthur lifted his head enough to realise that Leon was talking on the phone. Leon applied more weight to hold him down as he met Arthur's gaze. Arthur put more work into his fight, concentrating on his limbs and trying to move them. He felt the car take several corners on its flight, to wherever it was going. The rocking of the car told Arthur it was going at speed. He put a little more effort into getting up, knocking Leon sideways.
"Shit!" the man swore and dropped his phone. They had another brief tussle. Arthur was almost up when the car lurched suddenly, sending him head first into the door, stunning him for a moment. Leon took the advantage, he kicked Arthur in the ribs and got him back on the floor of the car, taking an arm and twisting it up his back and planted a knee into the small of his back. Arthur gasped as most of Leon's weight bore down on him. His vision was starting to blur but he wasn't sure if that was the drug, the knock to his head or the lack of breath. Leon released the pressure and Arthur gasped.
"Get off me!" he snarled trying to control the panic rising in him as he wondered what the hell he had got into. Sophia might wonder what was going on if he didn't return within time, but if she got distracted by a customer, then she might not even bother to remember.
"Sorry," Leon said, sounding like he actually meant it. Arthur twisted, trying to look over his shoulder. He managed to glimpse Leon, looking worried but with another syringe in his hand. Arthur struggled again as Leon pressed down on his shoulder and arm, pulling at the neck of his top, trying to find somewhere to inject him.
Arthur swore, and then rolled his eyes. "Don't," he begged Leon.
He didn't listen, he gave up trying to get Arthur's clothing out of the way and just slammed the needle into the muscle of the arm he had pinned. Arthur gasped, gritting his teeth and panting as he felt the sting of something injected into him. His muscle burned for a moment. He saw the syringe thrown into the mess of glass and liquid on the floor. Leon stayed on top of him, holding him down as Arthur blinked, trying to keep his vision clear, fighting to stay alert.
They both jerked as the car went over a bump at speed. Arthur gasped for breath again, feeling his body weakening. Leon didn't release him, even though he felt Arthur's body relax under him. He didn't dare. Arthur struggled again as the car came to a halt but there wasn't as much fight in him as previously. Arthur's eyes flickered closed then he opened them again, but it was a fight, his eyes rolled in his head and Leon risked letting him go. Arthur attempted to struggle up away from him, but he sagged back onto the floor as the car door opened. Leon looked up, his face filled with shock and remorse.
"I'm sorry sir, he put up a hell of a fight." Arthur heard him say.
"Is he injured?"
Arthur flinched as the person by the door touched the back of his neck. His body wasn't co-operating so he put as much effort as possible into at least staying conscious. He could see two figures by the door but they were nothing more than blurred shadows.
Uther looked down at the semi-conscious boy and then turned to the one stood next to him. Merlin looked back before eyeing Arthur's prone form.
"I don't think so," Leon said. He tried to check, Arthur gave a groan and flinched again, not wanting to be touched by any of them. He did little more than raise himself a little and then crash sideways into the seats. Uther looked at Merlin in concern. Merlin shrugged and then reached out a hand to lay it on Arthur's head, making him whimper.
He had to put up people touching him, if they paid for it, but he didn't have to tolerate it when he had a choice. Arthur was also fairly certain he didn't have to tolerate being kidnapped and drugged but that appeared to be happening. It was his last thought before Merlin calmly said.
His eyes flashed gold as he spoke and Arthur relaxed completely, closing his eyes and lying still. Leon huffed out another breath and sat back against the far door of the car. Uther looked up and glared at him.
"What the hell happened?"
Leon cringed a little, and opened the door, clambering out of the far side. He walked around the back of the car to stand with them.
"I thought I caught him at a distracted moment, he turned round before I could get the first injection in. Then I didn't get enough of the drug into him, and he started to fight."
"Hardly surprising," Gwaine said, getting out of the driver's door and walking round. "Maybe Merlin should have done the pick up."
"That wouldn't have been very believable," Merlin reasoned, glancing down at himself.
"And Uther would have just been too… well… ew!" Morgana announced, her heels clicking as she crossed the floor to join them. "At least we got him."
"Is there any sign of hostility?" Uther asked.
"Other than your boy there, no, but I dare say they know we've tracked him."
"I need to get him into the circle. That can fix any damage to him as well. It will conceal him until we can make arrangements to move him," Merlin said. Uther nodded looking down at the boy sprawled on the floor of the car. Reaching out he brushed Arthur's hair back off his face.
"He has his mother about him."
His fingertips traced over Arthur's cheekbone. Arthur didn't react, he lay still and silent.
"Why did she do this to him?"
"We don't know what happened, or what Igraine did," Merlin said calmly. "Or even how she did it."
"How long will he sleep for?" Uther asked Merlin.
"A few hours, I just helped the drug in his system. Enough time that I can get the spell set up around him."
"Is he going to stay in there?" Gwaine asked, looking over the open door at a now sleeping Arthur.
"Actually, I think we have to make him."