This isn't the first time Tazzik has been in the Shadow Broker's personal chamber, and it isn't the first time he's been naked on the bed either.

But this is the first time they've been about to do this.

The yahg has taken his translator and put it somewhere behind a desk. This is standard, something he's gotten used to by now. But every time the Broker speaks to him in a perfect salarian dialect, he can't help but be a little unnerved. Maybe it's the knowledge that if the man keeps the device, he won't be able to communicate with the rest of his ship. Or maybe it's the alien accent, the yahg's threatening mouth making sounds Tazzik has once grown up around. Whatever it is, whenever the much larger man speaks, it sets his teeth on edge.

The first time he'd been called into the Broker's office, he'd thought it was going to end in a gunfight; not that the Broker had taken an interest in him. Since then, they'd adopted this routine.

For the entire first year Tazzik hadn't been allowed to see his boss' face. He'd accepted it as a non-issue though, since no one saw who, or what the Broker really was. Hell, Tazzik still doesn't know what the man is exactly, but at least he can put a face to the hands touching him now.

One red, armoured knuckle lingers along the bottom of his back as he kneels on the sheets like a dalatrass would, facing away from the man behind him.

He doesn't have any real need to go through with this, but like most men of his species, there's always been the vague curiosity about sex. No real desire to try it, but more a petty inquisitiveness toward a theme that's so omnipresent throughout the whole goddamn galaxy. And while he's been propositioned by asari before, they've never held any interest to him. This though, this is different. It's almost a challenge.

The Broker slides a finger up the knots of his spine and Tazzik grits his teeth, fighting off what might be either a shudder or a shiver.

"Are you prepared?"

The voice is deeper than anything a real salarian can imitate and there's a persistent rumble behind every word that Tazzik can feel in his bones. It makes his skin crawl and his fists ball up on either side before he forces them to relax.

"Just fucking do it already," he snaps maybe a little too quickly. Still, he doesn't turn around.

It isn't smart to curse around the boss; he knows that. But he also knows that the Broker enjoys antagonizing him. And honestly, right now he's in no shape to be level headed.

The yahg chuckles, and the noise crawls over Tazzik's skin like some bug with too many legs. He steels himself, willing his heartbeat to slow. He knows he's larger than most salarian men, and by far the largest of all the Broker's current hired guard.

He can take this, he tells himself, he can take whatever the Broker will dish out. He always has and that's what makes him capable of being the man's personal agent. He's the Broker's most trusted enforcer – and more importantly – his only one.

"You know how this goes," the Shadow Broker says, temporarily removing his hands. "Fight it and it will only end worse for you."

And actually, Tazzik has no idea how things like this go. Yeah, he's heard some stuff over the years, but it'd never really been a priority; nothing had ever been worth remembering.

Wasn't there supposed to be some sort of preparation though?

The sheets rustle and the mattress sinks with the Broker's movements and Tazzik keeps him eyes firmly on the headboard, focusing on breathing evenly. He's been shot before, burnt and stabbed too. He's only ever sent out on the most vital and dangerous of missions. Nobody expects him to come back unscathed – and he rarely does.

So there should be nothing intimidating about this. But, when something cold and viscous touches where the back of his legs meet the rest of his body, it makes him jump. From the dip in the bed he knows the other man is back now and closer this time.

He tries not to squirm when he feels that same alien substance rubbed lower. It isn't uncomfortable, but it is foreign and cold. The cold. It gives him something to focus on, something to get stirred up about. Why are the Broker's hands so damn cold all of a sudden?

And then abruptly, without any further warning, the yahg is pushing a finger in.

Tazzik doesn't have the capacity to appreciate the gel, nor the foresight to understand that this is only preparation. That the Broker is being more charitable than necessary in indulging his best operative like this.

Tazzik exhales sharply, all his muscles straining. He presses his cheek into his shoulder and tries to stifle any noise, tries to bite back the sounds clawing up his throat.

Four dark eyes track every minute movement of the salarian's body. Every twitch gives away what Tazzik is feeling more than he'd ever be willing or able to communicate. The way his shoulders and back are tensed, the way his arms are shaking, the darker shade of green to his skin. It all tells the Broker what he needs to know.

Tazzik is built differently than any salarian he's had the privilege to see alive first hand. There's more muscle to him, so he's heavier, denser. It means the Broker can allows himself to push this man further than he might a weaker, more fragile person.

So he buries his finger in deeper and seeks something out. It makes Tazzik flinch with a feeling that can't really be described. The Broker laughs when the salarian arches his back and raises his hands as if he doesn't quite know what to do with them. Slim fingers grasp at the air before Tazzik grabs the headboard and bowing his head, squeezes his eyes shut.

It isn't pleasure he's feeling but it's something just a strong. It's like trying to force two repelling magnets together, and that's the sensation running down Tazzik's spine. He doesn't know if he likes it. The finger alone is enormous and already too much. Still, he says nothing, only grimacing and panting when he can't remain silent.

A large hand runs over him, groping at his shoulders, his arms and his knees. Somehow the motions feel greedy, but he doesn't have the faculties to dwell because buried up to the knuckle, the Broker curls his finger just a bit, and Tazzik convulses. It makes the salarian suddenly want to grab something, to hold something living under him. He badly needs to wrap his arms around someone. Instead he clutches at the sheets, trying to maintain a slipping grip of control over himself and to keep from begging.

This is what the Broker wants to see. It isn't about the sex for him, but more an opportunity to observe. He's never seen Tazzik reduced to so little before; he simply hasn't known him long enough. Salarian lives are altogether entirely too short.

This though, this is new. It's interesting. And in this self-imposed prison of his, any novelty is immensely valuable. More than that, this is fascinating. Here lays the Broker's best guard; a man hardened, vicious and cruel. Yet, with just a few of the simplest touches, he's completely undone.

The tableau makes the yahg feel possessive, and he wants to see more of what he's making the other man feel. He finds it unacceptable how thus far Tazzik has been allowed to keep his back to him. Luckily, even with one hand occupied it is no difficult task to grasp the salarian around his thin hips and lift him. Turning the other man around, the Broker maneuvres the two of them until he can see Tazzik's face and is effectively leaning over him.

Yes, this view is much more appropriate.

Tazzik's entire body is shaking, his narrow chest rising and falling frantically and his face is pinched tight as he struggles with himself. His fists are balled back into the sheets, knuckles white with tension.

It isn't enough for the Broker. Not yet.

So, with an expression of smug satisfaction, ever so gently he pushes Tazzik onto his back. The salarian makes a weak, pitiful attempt to resist, pushing himself back up by his elbows; but his arms can't gather the strength for their quaking, and he can't fight the Broker's increasing pressure on his chest. The effort doesn't last long. Soon he allows one of his legs to be gripped and bent at the knee as the Broker presses it back, and then back further still. The yahg only stopping when the bent leg is resting beside Tazzik's body on the dark sheets. The position isn't painful, but it is unnatural and leaves the smaller man feeling strangely vulnerable.

It pleases the Broker that even with all the extra muscle, the salarian still retains a measure of flexibility. He's pleased too, by the way Tazzik is openly gasping for breath now, though his eyes are slowly regaining their sharpness and an increasing edge of suspicion.

The thumb of the Broker's free hand follows a bulge of hard muscle running up a line of the salarian's leg toward his inner thigh. He stops only when his hand comes to rest against the edge of Tazzik's skin, beside the other one.

"What-" Tazzik starts to say, having trouble finding the words and having to swallow. "What are you-" he trails off, hating that he sounds so stupid but knowing that the Broker probably loves it.

"This has been adequate preparation," the yahg says in a voice the salarian knows he will never get used to.

"Shit," is all Tazzik can say, and even to his own ears, his voice sounds weak.

He doesn't have the presence of mind to realise that the next digit has the same coolness as before because he is too consumed with swallowing down an infuriating panic. It bothers him that he can't focus on the fury and stay concentrated. He feels like an animal bending to the Broker's whim.

When the second finger pushes in beside the first, he wants to scream – needs to – but doesn't. The sound that escapes him instead is almost a whine, and when he understands that he's responsible for the noise, he feels disgusted and angry. He hates himself for his reactions, hates the Broker for doing this to him, and hates the way his own hands seem to have found the man's chest and are clutching almost desperately at the fabric of an expensive shirt.

The Broker's unoccupied hand is meanwhile free again to roam over Tazzik's body, and it makes the salarian feel like he's on fire. When it strokes the side of his face, Tazzik leans into the touch. It's ridiculous, but it's the coolest thing in the room; cooler than the smooth sheets, cooler than his own body with its molten blood, and cooler even than the climate controlled air against his skin. The yahg hums with something that could be approval, and when a red finger passes over Tazzik's lips, the salarian opens his mouth, takes it in and bites down on it. It's something to do and it feels right. There's a need to reciprocate somehow and the only thing he can do is clench his jaw down harder.

He's surprised despite himself when there are no repercussions to this, the Broker instead allowing him to worry at a thick digit with his teeth. Eventually Tazzik thinks he might be tasting blood but the finger stifles the noises he can't control and so he doesn't relinquish it. He can't stand being so idle throughout this all. The inactivity seems wrong, like he should be doing more somehow.

His jumbled thoughts are interrupted when he feels something hot puff against his already too-hot face. Opening eyes that seem to have closed on their own, he sees the yahg bent over him, large red mask so close he can feel the man's breath. The proximity of those four, beady, staring eyes makes him feel dizzy and slightly nauseous but he doesn't look away. Or at least, he tries not to.

Tazzik curses himself for being so unaware of his surroundings. He's so caught up in all this that he doesn't immediately notice the Broker's other hand – the free one – until it's worming its way under him and cupping the back of his head. There's a momentary spark of delirious panic and he wonders if the man is going to crush his skull with that enormous hand.

When the yahg instead runs the pad of his thumb roughly along the sensitive tissue between his horns, Tazzik is completely unprepared. He howls, and jerking himself up, grasps at the Broker's collar with both hands as his vision burns white.

Looking down at the trembling mess of a man clinging to him, the Broker waits only a minute before dispassionately prying off Tazzik's hands. The salarian collapses back onto the bed soundlessly, apparently too shocked to do much more than pant. Staring at nothing, he curls up on his side, turning away.

It is tempting for the Broker to want to push this man further, but for now this is acceptable. There is time yet to test other limits.

Removing both his hands from Tazzik's body, the Broker wipes them off on the still quivering man's skin. "Clean this mess up," he says, pushing himself off the bed and standing. He doesn't elaborate on what the mess is exactly, but it isn't too hard to figure out.

And though Tazzik neither expects nor finds any tenderness in all this, somehow it's still enough for him. Done now, he turns his focus inward as he collects himself. He's back to being a soldier, and with every shaky breath, his bearings return in greater force. Still too sore to move, he rolls his eyes over to watch as the Broker prepares to leave the room.

The capacity in which the Tazzik can adapt, endure and recover are some of the abilities the Broker prizes most in the man. He is in no way disappointed to see the guard's silent recovery as the distrust and cynicism inch back into place.

This is all very good. He may not need to search for the agent's replacement for a few cycles at least.

And while Tazzik is neither the first, nor the last alien to see the room, for now, his brief life is enough for the Broker.