Author's note:

This takes place after episode 5 "Libretus" of season 2 of Spartacus: Vengeance and will most likely be invalidated when episode 6 airs. Please note it is written in the language of the show and may be difficult to read for those who are not familiar with it.

The young Syrian steals glances at the horizon while he makes his way through weather beaten temple. Walking past huddled groups of his fellow freed slaves settling in for the night, he finds a secluded corner of the grounds with enough privacy to guard against unwanted eyes. Nasir carefully lowers the small sack of his belongings and tightly wrapped bedroll to the ground, and kneels down beside them. While his wound still pains him a little he does not show it on his face or in his movements. Too long has he lain idle, resting while others toiled and worked doubly hard to compensate for his absence. It is a shame no longer to be born.

Alas, even in the hours spent laying in pain and silence little rest could be found. His thoughts ever turning to the small band of warriors that had, but a few days past, set out toward Capua on a mission born out of pure madness and the best of intentions.

Many in the camp have discussed the folly of attempting such a daring rescue, some even laying wagers upon the likelihood that any will return. Nasir pays their idle chatter no mind. He does not doubt that Spartacus will make good on his plans to see Crixus out of Roman hands and returned the loving arms of Naevia. If the gods are worth the prayers of the faithful, they will see all home in safety.

One comrade in particular, whose name has graced Nasir's own silent prayers, occupies much of his thoughts and dreams. The memory of Agron's bright, humor filled face appears unbidden, but not unwelcome, in Nasir's mind. The German's face shines in memory like the blinding rays of the sun, burning away all other thoughts and memories.

"Happy thoughts distract you," Naevia teases, kneeling down beside him and taking over the task of unwrapping his bedding.

He watches the woman he but a few days earlier saved from enslavement care for him like a doting mother and smiles. It is strange to allow one to do for him what he has done for other most of his life. Yet he does not protest, knowing that in these simple tasks she finds her own much need distraction. She, who too awaits news of the one she loves.

The thought stops Nasir. He should not be surprised that his feelings for Agron have grown to resemble those of Naevia for her man. Yet giving voice to them, even within the confines of his own mind, is a moment worth marking.

Love has long been a distant dream not worth the contemplation. In a life of service he could only hope to attain enough position to secure comfort, but never companionship so valuable as what he has found with Agron. Even though he is sure the German felt nothing more than close friendship for him, Nasir was satisfied with that gift of trust. Seeing the affection and forgiveness in Agron's eyes, even through his fever and pain, was yet another precious gift. To receive even more from the German was beyond belief and reason.

Nasir can remember how he and Naevia received the news of Spartacus' plan to rescue Crixus with shock and joy. After she left the chamber to seek out their leader, Nasir had struggled to stand and do the same.

"Nasir!" The sight of Agron's happiness did not shake Nasir's determination to be part of the mission.

He gave his dear friend a smile in greeting, gave himself a second to relish Agron's affectionate touch, but quickly turned his back to Spartacus. "Give me a sword, I will join you."

"I would have you rest yet a while longer," Spartacus replied, though Nasir could see appreciation and affection in his manner.

As he sought to launch protest, Agron gently tugged at his hair, drawing Nasir's attention back to the reason for his determination to fight. He could not abandon Agron again, not after the separation born out of Nasir's own compulsion to divulge truth of Naevia's imprisonment in the mines. Though it was a surety that all was forgiven between them, Nasir still felt the need to prove his worthiness to the group, and, in part, to Agron.

The German leaned closer, his callused hand tightening its hold on Nasir's neck, and his eyes seeming to brighten as he spoke. "This time you stay, and I go."

Nasir allowed a small laugh to escape, acknowledging Agron's meaning, but still wanting to summon another protest to their united denial. He told himself that his intention was to cease his idle rest and to join his comrades in their mission. But the truth was much simpler and far more selfish. He knew this was a dangerous mission and if Agron was to perish, Nasir desired nothing more than to meet his own death at his friend's side. It was his own understanding of the foolishness of his desire that forced him to concede and give Agron a nod of understanding.

Agron replied by closing the distance between them with a gentle kiss. Soft, warm lips pressing against his own, while strong fingers caressed the bare flesh at the nape of his neck. Breath mingled, but mouths did not open. It was but a fleeting moment of intimacy, gone almost before it had begun.

Nasir was too shocked to respond until after the German had pulled away, and even then he could scarcely summon more than a smile. As they gathered together to listen to Spartacus speak to the group, and even long after the small party departed for Capua, Nasir remained lost in thought and memory of the long desired kiss.

Even now, Nasir's lips still warm at the memory of the kiss and the promise he saw in Agron's eyes. Yet as he revels in the confirmation that his feelings are returned, an icy sliver of doubt creeps into his mind. What if the gesture was not true? Could Agron had meant the kiss to only pacify Nasir? A bone tossed to a injured pup, to stay his barking, while greater men deal with the business at hand. It was Spartacus' will that Nasir remain behind to heal his wounds. Was Agron's kiss and kind words nothing more than clever strategy?

"Nasir cease these thoughts that draw shadows over your eyes," Naevia whispers, brushing her hands across his brow, and eases some of the crease away with her loving touch.

"It is difficult when all one has is thoughts for companionship," he counters with a heavy sigh and lowers himself on to the bed with a wince of pain.

"Not all," she counters with a soft chuckle, gently unwrapping and checking his still healing wound.

"Apologies," Nasir concedes and bows his head, shamed by his thoughtlessness. "Your company is gladly received, but the mind and heart weigh heavy with...questions."

"Needlessly so," Naevia replies, re-wrapping his bandage and pulling a thin blanket over him. "All bore witness to his affection, there can be no doubt."

"Yet there-" Nasir's protests are quickly silenced by Naevia's slender finger pressed his lips.

"Silence doubt and listen to your heart," she speaks in a tone of authority and places a gentle kiss upon his forehead. "He loves you, Nasir. It was plain to see long before he kissed you."

Nasir eases his head down, letting Naevia's reassurances calm his mind for a time and allow him the freedom of escaping into his dreams.

Dominus led the way through the slave market, making crude jests about the endowments of the countless naked bodies on display. Nasir kept his eyes down cast, wishing his master would quickly satisfy his desire for a fresh body to warm his bed, so that they may hasten their return to the villa. The city always set him ill at ease. On this day...doubly so.

His feet pushed through the thick carpet of golden yellow flower petals littering the ground of the market and frowned at the strange decoration. It was not the usual straw and sand, nor was the smell the same. The market was usually perfumed with a mixture of spice and manure, but today it had a different aroma. One that Nasir could not place, though it seemed familiar to him.

"Nasir," his master called, beckoning him closer with a lazy wave of his hand.

"Dominus," Nasir replied without thought, raising his head but stopped mid-step.

At the center of a group of chained, naked slaves stood Agron, beaten and bloody. His bright eyes dulled by pain and defeat. A bloody gash cut across his bare chest, leaking onto the rose petals at his feet turning them crimson.

"Agron!" Nasir ran forward, his master and duty forgotten in the face of the broken form of his beloved friend.

Petals flew up from ground and took flight into the air around him, as if parting the way for his passage. As Nasir reached for him, the German fell to his knees. The Syrian cried out, catching the larger man in his arms. While crimson and gold petals swirled in the air around their huddled forms, the noise of the market died away.

Eyes, the color of a stormy sky, raised to meet Nasir's own darker ones. A hint of recognition passed over Argon's face and smile stretched his split, bloody lips. Nasir smiled weakly at the ghost of the man he once knew lying in in his arms.

Agron's cracked lips parted in a pained smile. "Nasir."

Tears burst from Nasir's eyes at the sound of his name coming from the other man's mouth. He could feel Agron's body grow heavy, as if death was already tugging his spirit down into the underworld. Nasir tightened his hold and schooled his expression to a facade of calm.

"Hush," he whispered brushing fingers over Agron's blood streaked brown. "Do not waste breath."

"Fucking Syrian," Agron scolded in a horse tone, tinted with humor and slowly shook his head. "It is as I told you before, you stay and I go."

"No!" Nasir protested as the light left the German's eyes.

Nasir awakens from the dream with a start, cold sweat clinging to his skin, just as a cry cuts through the air. He blinks at the brightening morning sky, slowly turning from crimson to gold and feels the icy grip of dread upon his heart. Many rush past him, their words too rushed to be understood, but the tone is filled with surprise and confusion.

He rushes to rise to his feet, pain, and his body's limitations, a dull throbbing to be easily forgot. His sword in hand, Nasir rushes forth to join with the gathering group at the entrance to the temple grounds just as the cries of surprise transform into cheers of celebration. Word quickly reaches Nasir's grateful ears. Spartacus triumphantly returns from Capua. The ever growing congregation of freed slaves roars with groggy exuberance.

"Crixus!" Naevia's voice rises above all others, parting the crowd to grant her passage to reach the wounded Gaul as he is carried into camp.

Her happiness is overshadowed by concern over the injuries he sustained during his escape from the grip of death in the arena. By the looks of his injuries he remains well within its reach. Still, pain and death can not keep a smile from Crixus' lips as Naevia kneels down to cup his broad face between her small hands. The touch seems to ease the Gaul's pain as he speaks her name in reverent whisper that, causing many hearts in the camp to lighten at the sound.

Nasir watches in envy, but smiles with appreciation of his new friend's joy. Spartacus and Mira walk closer and greet him with friendly gestures, that he quickly returns with sincerity. As they pass, he catches site of others in the group, some familiar and some strange to his eyes. He continues to look, searching for the face that haunted his dreams. Prayer already upon his lips that he will find the German whole and in good health.

"Why do you watch so intently?" The familiar voice startles Nasir as much as the strong hands grasping his shoulders. "Is there someone you are expecting?"

He turns, heart thundering, to take in the German's smiling face. Relief floods mind and heart, but freezes form. Nasir can scarcely comprehend that his prayers have been answered in full. Agron stands tall and proud, sunlight bathing his face in golden light.

"Close your mouth, lest flies find home in it," Agron laughs, patting the smaller man's shoulder for emphasis and turns to look over the camp while yawning.

"It is good to see you...well," Nasir stumbles, struggling to find appropriate manner when his heart cries out for a more intimate display of affection.

"It is good to be alive," Agron replies with a smile and lowers his gaze to Nasir's bandaged side. "How fares your wound?"

"Quickly healing," Nasir says, standing straighter in proof of his renewed strength.

"A blessing to see!" Agron places his arm around Nasir's shoulders and casts his gaze toward the interior of the temple where others are already gathering to celebrate. "Come, let us find refreshment and hear tale of how the we reduced Capua's great arena to dust."

Agron leads way into the thick crowd of celebrating men and women. Cheers, laughter and snatches of conversation buzz around them. Nasir can hardly focus on anything but the hand that lay upon his shoulder and the feel of Agron pressed against his side.

"It was this crazy horse-cocked German that took to the floor of the arena with Spartacus to see our comrades free," Donar's voice booms above all others, and causes many to take notice of Argon and Nasir's presence.

The towering gladiator crosses the short distance to greet Agron with a hard slap upon the back, jarring Nasir in the process. Agron smiles at his friend, while holding fast to Nasir. Donar takes in the sight of the Syrian at his comrade's side and gives the smaller man a respectful nod.

"Do not boast of my cock you humble cunt," Agron laughs, slapping Donar's chest with the back of his hand. "You who brought down an entire arena armed with little more than your own pitiful cock and a couple casks of oil."

Donar roars with laughter in response and Spartacus steps forward, placing hands on Donar and Agron's shoulders. All within sight of their leader quickly grow quiet in anticipation of his words. Nasir still wonders at the thrall the Thracian holds over all who behold him. Even he can scarce take his eyes from the man.

"Twas efforts of all, that aided in victory," Spartacus says, eyes passing over all those gathered around him, a welcoming smile on his face. "Let us all share in the celebration!"

A cheer rises up from the crowd, while Mira tugs at Spartacus' arm and pulls him away. Nasir can only guess at the purpose of their departure and envy their escape for more intimate celebration. While Agron continues to trade friendly insults with his comrade others gather to join in the conversation and vie for Aron's attention. A few have cups of wine and fists full of meat already in hand. The sight summons Agron's mention of refreshment to Nasir's mind.

He pulls free of Agron's grasp, intent on retrieving food, but a firm grip upon his wrist stops him. Agron holds fast to the smaller man's arm.

"You tire of my company so quickly?" The gladiator inquires in a teasing tone.

Nasir shakes his head, heat filling his cheeks. "I but seek the refreshment of which you spoke."

Agron grins, giving a nod of acceptance. "Hasten your return."

Nasir's own lips split in a answering smile, reluctantly pulling free of Agron's grasp, and he turns attention to task. He quickly finds Chadara looking vexed, while she hands out bread and meat.

Her eyes lighten upon seeing her friend. "I see your man returns."

"Tis a blessing from the gods," Nasir replies and grabs a pitcher of wine and two cups. "How fairs Rhaskos?"

"Perished on the floor of the arena." A shadow passes over Chadara's eyes betraying the calm air of her tone.

"Apologies," Nasir says, attempting to catch her gaze, but she turns from him and feigns interest in refilling her already full basket with bread. "He was-"

"Rhaskos is dead and so too should be discussion of him," Chadara speaks in harsh tone, but her expression quickly softens. "Enjoy your fortune and leave others to find their own."

She thrusts bread and meat into his arms and pushes him away, a weak smile upon her fair face. Nasir gives her a nod of thanks and walks away, casting concerned glances after his friend. Long has he and Chadara been friends, companion body slaves to their Dominus. While he knows her to be as clever and ruthless as any man, she also possesses a kind heart, rarely shown to any but closest friend and lover.

Nasir finds his way to back to Agron's side, continuing to watch his friend while she moves among the boisterous men. Her body sways enticingly as she moves, but her eyes hold restrained grief. Many show open appreciation of her beauty and one bold man rises to take hold her waist, attempting to pull her into his lap. Before Nasir can move to intercede, Donar pushes past.

A few short strides brings the gladiator between Chadara and her would-be seducer. Words are few, but Donar's fist makes the point clear when it collides with the other man's jaw. He falls to Donar's feet, while Chadara watches the proceedings with a look of rage upon her face. Donar takes the food from her grasp and hands it to another of the women. Without further word the gladiator takes Chadara by the arm and leads her away. Nasir steps forward, but Agron grasps his shoulder.

"Still your concern," Agron whispers, his breath brushing the smaller man's ear. "He acts upon my urging."

"Where does he take her?" Nasir watches as the gladiator and Chadara disappears from sight.

"To private chambers," Agron reassure him, releasing his grip upon Nasir's shoulders. "Where she may grieve, away from prying eyes and disrespectful dogs who would attempt to mount her before her man's body has grown cold."

"What of Donar?" Nasir turns to give Argon a measuring gaze, while he trusts the German's judgement he does not know Donar enough to trust him. "Can he be trusted to stifle his desires?"

Agron raises eyebrow at the question, but his shining smile soon follows to assure no offense is taken. "He can be trusted. Though one wonders if Donar is the one for whom which we should not be more concerned."

Nasir nods, understand Agron's meaning. Despite Chadara's grief and apparent anger over being escorted away, she is likely to seek comfort in carnal pleasures. The image of the towering gladiator being brought to heel by Chadara's endowments, as she has done before with so many others, brings a smile to Nasir's lips.

"Many a mighty warrior has fallen prey to her beauty," Nasir chuckles softly, and gazes up at Agron to find the German staring back at him with an intent expression.

"Few men can stand strong in the face of beauty," Agron adds, touching his fingers to Nasir's jaw.

"Agron!" A shout goes up, calling Agron's attention away toward another gladiator who holds a pitcher of wine aloft. "Come share wine and words."

"Another time," Agron calls back, placing arm about Nasir's shoulders. "Other matters need attending."

"To be sure," the gladiator calls his tone threaded with lewd insinuation, while the others around him laugh and make crude gestures.

Agron only laughs, turning his back upon the group and leading Nasir away, deeper into the temple. They come to a small room, bedding already laid upon the floor. Agron takes a seat upon his bed and begins to remove his sandals.

"Yours alone?" Nasir gazes around the small chamber before sitting upon the ground in front of Agron.

"Benefit of being Spartacus' second in command," Agron replies, removing his sword and laying it beside the bed. "Come let us eat, and speak after our bellies are full."

Nasir watches Agron eat heartily, his own food all but ignored. Again his thoughts become entangled in doubt and questions. The gladiator's regard was quite plain while they were in the company of others, but now, in seclusion, the German's eyes rest on his food and his body lay a distance from Nasir.

Doubt again creeps into the Syrian's mind. This time, recalling the words and gestures of the other men as he and Agron departed. Many men, like his former master, take pleasure like others take air. Coupling with many with regard for none. Nasir has witnessed many of the warriors within the group take lovers in a similar manner upon returning from battle. Rhaskos was known for taking Chadara whenever the mood struck, pinning her against the nearest wall and thrusting his cock home with little care for where they were or who might bare witness to their coupling.

Is it possible Agron is similarly inclined, seeking only to sate his appetite for pleasure? Does he simply crave a willing mouth for his cock or a tight ass to be quickly taken? Nasir's chest tightens at the thought of being no more than a body to warm the gladiator's bed.

It was his only purpose when in the service of his master, a task the Syrian found hollowing to the soul. To be treated as one would use a cup to drink wine only to discard once thirst is sated. It is a purpose he does not desire to be put to again, not even for one he loves.

He stares at his own shadowed reflection in his wine and considers summoning excuse to leave, thinking it best to depart before Agron confirms his fears with sweet words, and risk the temptation to shamefully accept any affection offered. No matter what pleasures the gladiator could bring they would only serve as salt to a wounded heart. Nasir attempts to ease the sting of disappoint by taking another sip of wine, but unwittingly reveals heartache in his expression.

"Does something trouble you?" Agron speaks around a mouthful of bread, and reaches out to touch Nasir's face. "Is it your wound?"

"It is nothing," Nasir insists, but the gladiator ignores his protest and moves hand to probe at the bandages covering Nasir's wound.

"Has it reopened from exertion?" Agron's hand gently moves down to the edge of the bandage, his fingers brushing bare skin and causing the smaller man to gasp at the contact. "Stubborn fool, you should be at rest."

Agron begins to rise, irritation twisting his face, but Nasir sets his hand upon the larger man's shoulder. "The wound does not grieve me!"

"I will not accept lie-" The lager man begins to argue, but again Nasir stops him.

"In truth, I am troubled, but not by pain," he says, pulling his hand away and gathering his courage to meet the other man's gaze.

"I would have you speak and see these troubles banished." Agron's irritated expression gives way to true concern.

"I fear a misunderstanding between us," Nasir confesses as a weight settles into the bottom of his stomach. "I have no wish to be an evening's distraction, even for a dearestfriend."

Understanding widens Agron's eyes, but an amused expression overtakes his face. He shakes his head and reaches for Nasir once more. Taking hold of the back of the smaller man's neck, he pulls him closer, so that the Syrian cannot evade his gaze.

"If my desire was only to wet my cock I could easily satisfy it with any number of willing cunts in this camp," Agron says with a soft laugh, causing breath to brush over Nasir's trembling lips.

The Syrian shakes his head, attempting to speak, but Agron speaks again. "Silence doubt and be assured, dearest friend. I desire a trusted companion to stand by my side and to wet my cock with beautiful lips."

Nasir's cheeks darken and Agron's face splits with a proud grin as their lips meet. Though there is a fierceness to the movements of the German's lips, the kiss is not of a hurried, greedy nature. It is purposeful and passionate. The gladiator's tongue caress the smaller man's lips with surprisingly gentle strokes. Heated breath follows, warming flesh and startling a moan from the Syrian. A callused hand tightens its grip upon Nasir's neck, while the gladiator's skilled tongue continues to steal the Syrian's breath and inspire his cock to stir.

When at last Agron pulls free of the other man's mouth, both are left in need of breath. The gladiator guides the smaller man down to the bed, shifting so that he may hover over the Syrian's prone form. With a hearty laugh thick with desire and intention, the gladiator lowers his mouth to the smaller man's neck. Tongue and teeth tease dark, delicate skin, inspiring moans that echo off the walls of the small chamber.

Nasir's hands caress the scar-laced skin of the German's well muscled shoulders. His fingers claw for purchase, while he struggles to steady his breath. The gladiator growls against the smaller man's collarbone, his teeth gently scrapping at skin. Nasir gasps at the strangely arousing sensation of intermingling pain and pleasure, while the German's mouth moves lower to take hold of a dusky nipple. Tongue teases sensitive flesh, causing it to harden, and teeth graze the tip, driving the breath from the smaller man's mouth in a horse cry.

"You seek to drive me mad," Nasir pleads breathlessly.

Agron laughs, sliding his hand between the Syrian's thighs to grip his hard cock through thin fabric. "I seek to make you call my name as you finish."

Nasir's eyes close for fear of coming in the other man's strong grasp if he does not regain some control. He takes a deep breath, and opens eyes to behold Agron's grinning face. The gladiator looks not unlike he does before battle, gleeful and slightly crazed. It is a sight that should instill fear, but only makes the smaller man harder, and causes him to buck into the gladiator's hand.

"Fuck, you are eager," Agron's voice takes on a tone of wonder and heat, his eyes moving down to where he holds the Syrian in his hand.

The German moves his hand away, causing the other man to give a small groan of disappointment. Agron shushes him, moving to remove the Syrian's breeches to reveal his rigid cock. "By the gods!"

Nasir chuckles at other man's astonished expression. His hands finds the German's cheek and pulls him closer so their lips meet again. The gladiator is only distracted for a moment, his eyes eventually return to gaze upon the Syrian's impressive erection.

"Do you hesitate?" Nasir's concern is plain to hear causing Agron to immediately lifts his gaze.

"Only for need of confession," Agron sighs, rising up to sit on his heels and scrub his fingers across his scalp.

"Oh," Nasir says, sitting up and shifting his legs away from the other man.

"Do not mistake hesitation for rejection," Agron insists, grabbing the smaller man's wrist and shifts closer with a heavy sigh. "Nasir, I have never...lain with a man."

It is Nasir's turn to have eyes widen with understanding. "But you have been with a woman?"

"Many women," Agron says with emphasis and humor, moving to sit down beside the Syrian. "I am not unknowing of how such things are done. One only need to spend one night in a ludus to gain intimate knowledge of the many ways in which men fuck one another, but I have not done so myself. I would not mislead and by lie cause embarrassment or injury."

Agron nods toward the Syrian's cock for emphasis, and grins. Nasir laughs taking the gladiator's hand in his own and places a kiss upon the rough, scared knuckles. Agron's smile shifts to a smirk as his breath becomes ragged.

"I would not have your mind weigh heavy with worries that are easily remedied." Nasir says, moving to straddle the German's hips.

Nibble fingers quickly untie the gladiator's subligaculum, removing the fabric from Agron's groin to expose the German's own ample cock to the air. Nasir licks his lips and receives a throaty laugh in response. He echos laughter, raising eyes to look upon his lover's questioning expression.

"How does one remedy such concerns?" Agron's face still holds a shadow of doubt, but the Syrian quickly banishes it by tracing tongue over cock.

"I am well versed in the art of pleasuring men," Nasir answers, his breath cooling the strip of flesh dampened by his tongue and elicits groan from the gladiator's mouth. "Trust that I will see to your desire without injury or embarrassment."

"You have my trust, my cock and whatever else you crave," Agron groans, leaning up to take hold of Nasir's hair and pulls him into another fierce kiss.

Nasir eagerly accepts the gladiator's tongue, sucking and lathing it with his own, demonstrating the ways in which he wishes to pleasure his lover's cock, and eventually drives a moan from the now shaking German. They part, both breathless again. The Syrian quickly lowers his lips onto the larger man's cock, using mouth and tongue to drive more hoarse cries from his lover. His skilled hands slide between the gladiator's powerful legs to cup and gently massage his sack and lightly probe the tender skin of his anus.

"Remember promise of no injury!" Agron lets out a startled laugh, jerking at the touch, and Nasir slides the gladiator's cock from of his mouth.

"Calm yourself," he commands, wetting his fingers with his mouth and returning it to circle the delicate skin. "I will use a gentle touch."

Agron can only pant in reply while the Syrian returns his mouth to work on the German's thick cock. Nasir works steady, driving gasps and curses from his lover's mouth with torturous circles of his fingers and strokes of his skilled tongue, until he is sure the gladiator will spend if pushed further.

Nasir reluctantly removes his mouth from his lover, shifting himself up so that their cocks touch. Still breathless and trembling, the gladiator pulls the Syrian down upon his chest. The smaller man slides up to place a kiss upon his lover's sweat dappled chest. The German hums in contentment and wraps his arms around the smaller man, his smile ever bright as he places a kiss upon Nasir's lips. "By the fucking gods you will be the death of me."

Nasir laughs again, shifting his hips against the German's to slide their cocks against each other. They both moan their pleasure at the contact, and the larger man grasps the Syrian's hips. His body arches to increase the friction and they begin to move in unison, until the smaller man is the one left breathless and trembling.

"A moment," Nasir begs, reaching out to retrieve an unlit lamp that lay beside the bed and rises up to sit upon the larger man's thighs.

Agron watches while the Syrian removes the wick from the lamp and carefully pours the oil into his palm and onto both their cocks.

"Fuck! It chills the skin." The gladiator hisses a complaint.

"It will warm soon enough," Nasir says with sly grin and sets down the lamp.

Nasir wraps one hand around both their cocks in a firm grip, while moving to the crevice of his ass. He easily slides a single finger inside himself, while steadily working his other hand over their joined cocks. Agron moans his approval, his hands gripping Nasir's waist to steady him.

He slowly readies himself, shivering with delight with each added finger and presses teeth to lip in anticipation of replacing fingers with his lover's cock. Agron gasps, rising up to still the Syrian's hand on their cocks and places other hand on his lover's face. The gladiator's eyes fix on the smaller man, his expression unreadable and still as stone. Nasir attempts to speak, but the larger man stills his lips with a brief kiss.

"Never doubt my affection," Agron whisper the words against his lover's still parted lips.

"I swear I will not," Nasir promises, shifting forward to press the German's cock against his ass.

Agron groans, pressing his forehead to the Syrian's shoulder and grinding his teeth to keep from violently thrusting home. Nasir smiles at his lover's struggle, brushing his lips over the German's furrowed brow and slowly lowers himself onto the larger man's cock. The gladiator growls a curse, hands gripping the smaller man's hips to steady him until he is firm seated inside the Syrian's body. Nasir begins to move, but the German quickly tightens his grip upon the smaller man's flesh.

"Still yourself or I will spend too soon," Agron pleads in a strained whisper.

Nasir grins proudly and presses his lips to his lover's ears. "I care not, as long as you spend inside me."

"Fucking Syrian," Agron growls, sucking breath through bared teeth and wraps an arm around the Nasir's back.

The gladiator rises from the floor, causing a startled cry from the Syrian's mouth and stands holding his lover upon his cock. Wall meets Nasir's back, strong arm gently cradling his weight and allowing him to focus on their connected bodies.

"I would see you to end with me," Agron says, voice heavy with need for air, as he places a hand against the wall to brace himself.

"Then do not be gentle," Nasir replies, wrapping his arms around the gladiator's neck and tilting his hips to sink down further onto the German's cock.

"What of injury?" Agron sighs, eyes lowering to the bandage still wrapped around the Syrian's waist.

"Of no concern," The Syrian insists in a commanding tone, and places his mouth to the gladiator's chest, capturing flesh between his teeth in a fierce bite.

"Fuck!" Agron howls, shifting his hips and thrusting hard into his lover's body.

Their bodies move at a fevered pace, filling the air with sounds of sweat-slick flesh and labored breaths, each meeting the other's body with strength and fervor. Agron's expression is fixing in concentration, his mouth a tight line while his eyes never leave the Syrian's face. The smaller man gives himself over to pleasure, holding fast to the larger man's shoulders and meets him thrust for thrust with hungry glee. His eyes drink in the German's glistening body and bright eyes that fix upon him with intensity and love.

It is a sight that drives Nasir to climax. He cries out Agron's name, fingernails digging into hard, unyielding muscles as his body contracts with each wave of his orgasm. The German soon follows, snarling a string of curses that threaten to set the air on fire and gives one last powerful thrust.

After a moment of heavy panting, Agron carefully lowers the smaller man to the bed and collapses beside him. Stealing a quick kiss from his lover, the gladiator wipes the sweat from his face, heaves a sigh and closes his eyes. Nasir receives the affection gladly, in awe that the gladiator was still able to stand, much less hold the smaller man in one arm, when his own legs were trembling from exertion. Thirst overrides exhaustion and drives the Syrian to fetch them both wine, but when he turns to offer a cup to Agron he finds the German snoring softly.

Charmed by the sight of his slumbering lover, Nasir quietly settles back into the bed and sips his wine. He savors the sweet flavor while watching Agron sleeping and smiles at his good fortune. Chadara is right. He should be thankful and turn thoughts from trouble.

Nasir finishes his wine, puts away his cup, and lays down to sleep. Agron shifts in his sleep, his face darkening into a scowl of confusion. His hand reaching out to wrap around the smaller man's waist.

"Nasir," the gladiator mumbles, eyes still closed, while he pulls the Syrian against his body.

"I am here," Nasir whispers, shifts to face his lover and pulls a thin blanket over their bodies.

The Syrian kisses the creases from his German's brow, watching as the gladiator quickly relaxes under his touch. He closes his own eyes and seeks slumber, a silent prayer of thanks drifts through his mind before sleep finally claims him.

Afterwords: I would like thank Prassacut for her invaluable assistance and fantastic suggestions (including suggesting the edition of some scenes) and Chele681 who did a great last minute beta (and has given in and starting watching the show).