A/N: Here we are again, with my random Chessfic ideas. Upon reading the Broadway libretto for Chess, as well as the Australian version, I was delighted to find that Freddie's character is consistently ridiculous and paranoid and cocky in all versions of the show. The yogurt in particular tickled me pink. So here's my brainchild, and I hope you enjoy it!

Disclaimer: Chess belongs to Tim Rice, Bjorn Ulvaeus and Benny Andersson. Not moi.

Клубника

"I came to apologize."

Anatoly blinked, then blinked some more at the earnest face of Frederick Trumper. Apologize? Was that even a word in the American's vocabulary? He opened his mouth to make a comment about this but as he was about to speak, Freddie waved a hand to silence him- that's more like him- and glanced down into the small book he held in his other hand, seeming to struggle for a moment before woodenly pronouncing the next word.

"Ya… So-ja…lei…you… Right?" He nervously met Anatoly's eyes again, insecure, and the Russian barked a laugh.

"Bad Russian apologies? What are you reading?" The darker-haired man reached and plucked the book from his opponents fingers, thoughts of meeting Florence at the bar flown from his mind as he read the cover. His mouth twitched into a smile. "English to Russian Dictionary, huh?"

"I thought you'd appreciate it more in your own language," Freddie muttered, running a hand through his short brown hair anxiously. He was tense, obviously not in his element, but Anatoly supposed that he wasn't used to handing out apologies with this much effort put into them- if he handed out apologies at all. He took pity on the American, sitting across from him at the table and banishing any vague wonder about where the hell Molokov had gotten off to.

"Well, your pronunciation leaves a lot to be desired." He shook his head and snorted again, endlessly amused by Freddie's stuttering attempt at speaking his language. "Tell me, what is it you're sorry for again?"

He grinned, figuring that as long as Freddie was feeling remorseful he could squeeze some harmless fun out of it, and the white-clad man blanched. He snatched his book back and flipped through the pages hastily, trying to memorize the foreign words that his mouth couldn't quite seem to form. "Uh…" He swallowed, using his fingers to mark pages he might need, and Anatoly could see his frustration growing in the reddening of his face. He sat back with his hands folded in his lap, fighting back another smile.

Finally, the American looked up from the book and furrowed his eyebrows, contorting his mouth as he spoke like he couldn't fathom how the words could possibly translate into anywhere near the same things he conveyed in his own language. "Po-zhal-l…" At a loss, Freddie shut his mouth and buried his head in the book again. "Klubnika?" he muttered, muffled by the pages.

"That's a start," the Russian laughed. "The good news is that you can pronounce 'strawberry'. I'll assume you're talking about the yogurt stunt?"

"I don't normally cheat," Freddie sighed, ducking his head in shame. He fidgeted, awkward and out of place in the oriental setting and in Russian company, to boot. As much as he didn't like the idea of dining with a Soviet, he had to admit that it was a necessary evil. Freddie wasn't a cheater, no matter how badly he wanted to win, and Anatoly shouldn't have been subject to his faux paranoia. The guilt had eaten at him all day, until finally he had gone out and bought the stupid book that was hardly any help to him at all, as it turned out. There was nothing more irritating than trying to learn a language on the spot. But it was worth Anatoly's forgiveness- the fact that he valued that at all was a miracle, but suddenly it mattered a whole lot.

"Hmm." Anatoly regarded him with a strange look on his face, tilting his head curiously. Freddie Trumper had more layers to him than he'd originally thought… Starting to feel that familiar excitement begin in his chest again, he suddenly smiled and inclined his head. "You're forgiven."

"Really?" The American looked as though he couldn't believe his luck, blue eyes wide, and the Russian just nodded again. Freddie couldn't place the vibe he was getting from the other man, only that it wasn't ordinary, and although he should probably have left with that he had the odd compulsion to stay where he was. "Why?"

"As much as I'm not supposed to like you, I find it hard to believe you're really as crazy as they say." A pause, and then he continued with a slightly more amused tone. "You've just proved my point. You're as human as I am."

Again, he reached for the book in Freddie's hand and let it linger there for a moment, their hands brushing. Freddie blushed uncontrollably, trying to quell his deafening heartbeat. He wondered if the signals Anatoly was sending him were intentional- those dark eyes were as enticing as they were intimidating from across the table, and he shuddered to think of what that might mean.

It had been a long time since Florence had graced his bed with her presence, and since, his tastes had changed…

Meanwhile, Anatoly felt the electric current between them and relished it, really excited for the first time in what seemed like forever. Florence may have been beautiful, but Freddie was… Well, he was Freddie. Handsome, devilish, and oh-so-corruptible. The Russian would place every last penny he had on the American being a latent homosexual. God only knew the things he could teach him…

Svetlana and Florence and Molokov and the chess tournament in general had fled his mind the moment his skin had touched Freddie's. He leaned across the table, a seductive undertone to his voice. Maybe it was the drink he'd had earlier in his room, or maybe it was just the effect Freddie had on him… "Is there anything else, then, or is this meeting adjourned?"

Freddie glanced around nervously. There was no sign of his second or the Russian's, so where was his excuse to stay? As he was concocting a shoddy story to keep Anatoly engaged, his mouth- as per usual- ran without him. "How do you say 'fuck' in Russian?"

God damn him and his mouth. Anatoly was so suave, so obviously in control of his words. Freddie could hardly form a sentence without stepping all over his own feet.

Anatoly barked a laugh, shifting to disguise the subtle bulge in the front of his trousers. He hooded his eyes and leaned forward, smirking, lacing his words with seduction. "Yebat," he purred, relishing the way the American's eyes widened like a deer caught in the headlights.

"Oh." Head swimming undeniably pleasantly at the implications, Freddie licked his lips and asked hoarsely, crossing his legs tightly as his cock stirred in it's confines, "… What about- what if I wanted to ask someone?"

"To fuck?" Smirk still playing on his lips, Anatoly reached across the table and plucked the dictionary away from him again, tossing it to the side. "English will suffice."

There was no way to misinterpret that. Maybe Anatoly could teach him a thing or two… About pronunciation. And- and the Russian language-

Yeah. Right.

Freddie slammed his hands down on the table, standing and staring at him with blue eyes darkening, muttering almost shyly, "My room?"

"Please," the Russian nodded, grinning at his success, and as Florence and Molokov entered they blinked as the two brushed urgently past them, arm in arm, completely ignored.

Florence narrowed her eyes suspiciously. "What do you suppose they're up to?"

The other second just shook his head in exasperation, recognizing the anxious strides of the desperately horny. "Sergievsky, you whore…" he muttered under his breath. Florence gave him a baffled glance but he just shook his head and faked a smile. "Ah- I'm sure that they'll behave themselves. Come, let me buy you a drink since we are here…"

Internally, he groaned.

Another one?

And this one was a man…

Molokov sighed as he ordered the drinks, pointedly ignoring Florence's questioning glances. He would never understand Anatoly's libido. Or his taste.

"You don't think they'll hurt each other, do you?" She seemed anxious, nudging him as though this was a real concern and earning a derisive snort.

"Miss Vassy, I encourage you to forget about them for the next… twelve hours or so. They won't want to be disturbed."

"What? What does that even mean?"

He lead her to the table the opponents had recently evacuated and handed her a wineglass as they sat down. Sipping the dark liquid, he glanced down at the dictionary and nearly choked as he began to laugh. The Hungarian woman looked ready to institutionalize him, watching in concern.

Unbidden, an image of the smart-mouthed American man with his hands tied behind his back, gasping out the words in Russian to beg for more as Anatoly slid his hands down his torso popped into his head and wouldn't leave. As disturbing as that was… it was probably accurate. He coughed, making an effort to compose himself.

To think that it had all begun with a cup of yogurt… That poor man wasn't going to be able to sit tomorrow.

"I believe he is giving him an- ahh… cordial lesson in diction."