Title: Games People Play
Characters:
Sylar/Peter Petrelli
Rating: PG-13
Warnings: Mild violence
Word count: ~1,300
Setting: Some unspecified post-BNW setting where Peter and Sylar hang out with each other a lot.
Summary: Sylar keeps playing this game that annoys the heck out of Peter.
Notes: Written for the 2011 Advent Calendar. Many thanks to means2bhuman for beta reading this.

Peter didn't respond to the shoulder check. Nor to the casual shove he got a little while later. But he finally snapped when Sylar flicked his ear like a god-damned kid. Peter swung at him, which wasn't a big surprise. Peter didn't try to hide his attack nor was he making much of an effort to connect. All he really wanted to do was impress on Sylar that if he kept messing with him, there would be a fight, just like there always was. Surely Sylar doesn't want an actual fight, right?

Sylar dodged, leering at him. He managed to check Peter out head to toe very quickly, just in case Peter hadn't gotten the memo as to what all the overly physical attention was about.

Okay, so maybe Sylar does want a fight. "Would you stop it?" Peter asked.

"Make me," was the expected, stereotypical response, complete with ducking in just enough to reach out one of his long arms, fingers extended, and poke them hard into Peter's chest to push him back a few inches.

Peter jumped forward and swung for real this time. He missed, again, which was also expected, but he managed to get close and nearly ram into Sylar in the process. His other fist caught Sylar in the side as the man was trying to get out of the way. It didn't have much impact, but at least it was contact. Hopefully it would get Sylar's attention and make him back off.

Sylar slapped him, open-handed.

So much for making him back off. Peter gritted his teeth and got away from him, his cheek stinging. He's playing with me, the asshole. This is his idea of … flirting? Jeez. Where does he think this is going to get him? Has he always been like this?

Sylar's eyes were positively twinkling at him. He looked like he was having a great time. Peter felt put-upon and felt a steadily growing dread at how likely this was to spiral out of control into a serious brawl. Even though he could borrow regeneration, it still hurt and he liked to think they'd put the constant fighting behind them. Sylar taunted, "Come on, Peter! You know this game."

He sighed, letting his hands fall. "Yeah, I do. And I'm getting pretty tired of playing it."

Sylar put his hands down as well, and walked closer. "Yeah? You know what? Me too." A second too late Peter realized Sylar wasn't stopping, but closing with him. Peter's hands came up; Sylar's hands came up. Sylar was grabbing; Peter was punching. For a moment, they got in each other's way enough that neither succeeded. Peter's fists dropped for body blows and they landed, though he didn't have much power in them yet. Sylar grunted from the pummeling, teeth gritted, and yanked Peter's face forward into his own.

It was not quite a head-butt because Sylar's face didn't actually hit his, but Peter yelped and quit trying to punch, instead switching to try to shove Sylar away. Sylar's lips landed on his own with more care than one would expect given the degree of motion going on. Peter's hands on Sylar's shirt immediately curled into the cloth, like some instinct kicked in. Peter sucked in air and kissed back, not even thinking about the seamless transition from anger to ardor. Sylar turned his head and kissed him harder as the fight bled out of Peter completely. His mouth dropped open under Sylar's lips. Peter was breathing hard for a totally different reason now. Sylar groaned softly and Peter echoed him, letting himself go in the moment because he had dreamed of doing this for so long it felt like years. Sylar's hands slipped into his hair as Peter stopped trying to pull away.

For a very long moment, they stood together and kissed, lips working passionately against one another, faint vocalizations making it clear that both were enjoying it. Peter's latest groan took on a louder and less pleased quality as he pulled his head to the side. No matter how much he wanted it, he couldn't do this. Not with a guy who kept starting fights with him. Sylar grabbed his hair with one hand and his head with the other, growling, "Peter …"

Peter was attracted, yeah, but the second the initial rush wore off, like it just had, Peter's personal standards started kicking in. He wasn't going to make out with someone who beat him up for fun. "I don't want to do this," Peter protested.

"Doesn't seem that way to me," Sylar said, pulling Peter back in close enough that the physical evidence of his desire was unmistakable.

Peter struggled, raising his hands up to throttle Sylar as the man mouthed with renewed abandon at Peter's face. Peter's hands on his windpipe only caused a surge of tension and a whine of desire from Sylar. Disgusted, Peter let his hands fall. Other than keeping his feet, he went limp and unresponsive. Clearly part of what was getting Sylar off was Peter's reactions. So Peter resolved to give him nothing.

It took Sylar a couple beats to work out what was going on. He shook Peter and growled at him again. "Come on!"

Raising his brows to try to communicate emphasis, Peter said, "I don't like this. Stop it."

Sylar kissed him again anyway, fighting to worm his tongue into Peter's firmly shut mouth. When that failed, he bit Peter on the lips, hard.

Peter jerked away. "Ow! Son of a bitch! That hurt!"

Sylar got a hold of the shoulder of his shirt and tried to pull him back a second time. His voice took on a desperate tone as he said, "Come on, Peter." This was the most overt their persistent, unresolved sexual tension had ever gotten. Peter was pretty interested in the ends - he just wanted some input on the means.

Peter twisted and yanked, not caring if he ripped the fabric. Sylar slapped at his face again. He missed, but it was still the last straw from Peter's point of view. He burst out, "Would you fucking stop it? I'm not that hard to get into bed, you asshole, if you'd stop hitting me and fucking listen!"

Sylar released him immediately and stood there stock still, blinking.

Peter scowled at him while he straightened his shirt. He didn't move away, for fear that might break the spell, or be interpreted as a rejection that neither of them would be able to recover from. "What?" he snapped at Sylar, who was staring at him intently.

"I'm listening," Sylar said simply, giving Peter every shred of his attention.

Peter did a quick review of what he'd said. Oh. "Be nice to me!" he said quickly, wondering if Sylar was serious here. He looked serious. Was this really just a case of advanced cluelessness and he was trying to woo Peter with all the cool of a thirteen-year-old boy with a crush? "You know, like, polite. Show some manners. Don't hit me. If I tell you to stop, you've got to back off and let me calm down before you try again. You can touch me without hurting me or shoving me around, but you have to wait for me to make at least some of the moves." Peter's voice softened a little as he reached up and wiped his mouth with the back of his hand. "And I will."

"Okay." Sylar nodded shortly, leading Peter to wonder if all he'd needed to do all along was just introduce a different game in order to make Sylar quit playing the old one. It also occurred to him that he'd just backed himself into something of a corner, virtually promising to deliver if Sylar just changed his behavior.

Well, Peter thought, that's not exactly a bad thing.

"Have you calmed down yet?" Sylar inquired politely and Peter couldn't help from bursting out laughing.