A/N: Hey there *waves* Here comes an update for this story. It was a bit surprising that this was what my bunnies wanted to continue, especially after the last week I have had...
Well it was either this or a new fic with Eliot having to pose as a stripper for a con (damn my friend forcing me to watch Magic Mike and giving me a new plot bunny), so I thought this was the better option, since I'm sure you really don't want to read another new one of my crazy stories *ducks and hides* and once again this story got away with me and will probably be a little longer than three chapters *sighs*
I just hope you will like the new chapter and comments would of course be most appreciated *smiles*
Thank you to SivanShemesh, Jesco123, fro-chan, CherokeeFireBird, Kim, krazylicious, Liv Scully, crazy4tv and LadyGaidin for all your kind reviews for the last chapter *hugs*
Warnings: Slash, mentioned dub-con and non-con (but really just mentioned, nothing that is even remotely explicit)
Disclaimer: None of the Leverage characters belong to me and I just borrowed them for this little story... this story doesn't mean to offend anybody… this is just for fun… and not for money either...
Nate really didn't like this whole thing and he had the feeling that things would get a lot worse before they got better, but honestly, there was not much he could do about it. And he hated to not be in control, especially when that meant that one of his team had to pay the price. He glanced at Eliot and sighed quietly. He really didn't want the Hitter to do this, but he needed to get Sophie and Parker out of this safely, even if it meant sacrificing Eliot. Well no, he wasn't sacrificing the other man. Eliot was doing this of his own free will and there was nothing Nate could do to talk him out of it.
Nathan just hoped that Eliot really could deal with whatever exactly Samuel Miller wanted from the Hitter. The mastermind once again glanced at Eliot, who was leaning almost casually against the car they had driven here, arms crossed in front of his chest. He hadn't said a word ever since they'd climbed into the car to drive to their meeting and Nate and even Hardison had left him alone, because there was nothing much they could say. And they also knew that the man didn't need their pity and he needed the silence to steel himself against what was most likely going to happen.
The three members of team Leverage were standing in front of Miller's huge mansion and were waiting for the man himself to arrive and greet them, not that they were in any hurry to meet him, no matter how much they wanted to put this whole ordeal behind them, which probably wouldn't be too easy.
Nate noticed that Eliot had actually dressed into the suit jacket and the shirt Miller had ordered him to wear, but he had kept on his jeans, not, Nate added mentally, that said jeans spoiled how good Eliot looked, quite the contrary, they only added to the appeal, because they were very fitting in all the right places. Nate wasn't sure why Eliot had decided to wear that particular outfit. The Hitter seemed to have noticed that Nate was looking at him and he seemed to read the other man's thoughts, because he simply shrugged.
"It's going to keep Miller distracted. No use getting him riled up before Parker and Sophie are outta there," he explained almost too casually and Nate found himself agreeing with Eliot. Even he had been distracted numerous times when Eliot had worn those jeans, no matter what the Hitter had been doing and that was a secret he'd probably take to his grave, especially when he once again thought what was going to happen soon. And Nate mentally slapped himself for having these inappropriate thoughts in a moment like this and he was thankful that Eliot wasn't looking at him anymore, because he feared he might have given some things away.
Nate couldn't ponder their situation anymore, however, because their host for the evening chose that exact moment to arrive.
"Well, at least you're on time."
Miller was all smiles and was talking as if they were good friends that had been invited over for a nice dinner. But that was nothing more than show, because his eyes freely roamed over Eliot's body, lingering in certain places and it was so obvious that even Hardison and Nate felt dirty and uncomfortable. Eliot was the only one who wasn't fazed even a little, or at least it looked like he wasn't, but Nate could see the tenseness of his shoulders and the tight set of his jaw.
"Where are Sophie and Parker?" he questioned, his voice as even as possible given the situation.
Miller pursed his lips a little.
"Straight to business I see," he said and waved his hand and suddenly Nate and Hardison were surrounded by armed men, wherever they had come from.
"Why don't we all go inside and discuss this matter further? It's way more comfortable than out here in the open."
Eliot growled, clearly not happy with that, but he knew, as did Hardison and Nate, that they didn't have much of a choice to follow Miller's orders, no matter how polite they were voiced. Also, if they wanted to get out of this alive, they needed Miller to feel secure and as if he had the upper hand, which unfortunately he had right now. If Miller felt at ease then maybe he would get cocky and they could exploit that weakness.
"Lead the way", Nate told , trying to sound nonchalant, causing Miller to chuckle.
"Just a second, Mr. Ford," he said and then he gestured to three of his men. Two of them walked to Hardison and Nate and cuffed their hands behind their backs. The third man handed a set of cuffs to Miller. And with them in hand, their mark approached Eliot, who stood unmoving, eying him with distrust. Miller held his eyes and then he told him, voice dangerously low: "If you resist, your friends will pay the price."
Eliot simply nodded grimly and put his hands behind his back, expecting the other man to cuff them too, but Miller shook his head.
"Hands in front of you," he instructed.
Eliot raised an eyebrow, but then he did as instructed and Miller fastened the leather cuffs tightly around both wrists, a lot tighter than needed and Eliot had to bite back a wince when they cut into his flesh. From the short chain connecting the two wrist cuffs together dangled a longer chain with another set of cuffs, which Miller now fastened tightly around Eliot's ankles, again making the Hitter wince a little, because they were too tight. The chain that connected the two sets of cuffs was so short that Eliot couldn't raise his arms anymore and he even had to hunch over a little. The even shorter chain that connected the ankle cuffs made it almost impossible for Eliot to walk normally, let alone fight properly. And the Hitter was pretty sure that this was exactly the plan. Miller had obviously done his homework and he had done it well, almost too well for him working on it alone...
And Eliot would probably have coped with the restraints a lot better if Miller hadn't added a leash to the mix and clipped it to the wrist cuffs. It was humiliating, because it made him feel like a caged animal and Eliot hated feeling caged more than anything and flashbacks of times spent in various prison camps came back suddenly and only his training and the fear for his team's safety helped him to stay calm and not lash out violently.
"Is that really necessary?" Nate questioned angrily. He really hated to watch Eliot just endure all of this for them. Well, considering what was probably going to happen to Eliot tonight, it didn't seem like a big deal, but still, it rubbed Nate the wrong way.
Miller merely gave him a look.
"You know better than I do that it is necessary, because we both know what Mr. Spencer is capable of, so the restraints are a safety measure."
Nate snorted and pointedly looked at the leash in Miller's hands. The man just chuckled.
"Oh that... that is just because I can and because it's a good look on him," Miller explained and for the first time since this whole mess had started, Eliot showed some emotions. He growled in his throat, low and dangerous and Nate knew that Miller would already be dead if Eliot didn't fear for Hardison's, Parker's, Sophie's and Nate's lives. And Miller was probably aware of that fact too, because he took a step away from the Hitter, out of Eliot's immediate reach, smile still in place.
"So, let's go inside," the mark told them with obvious glee and anticipation.
He then waved at his men again. And one each grabbed an elbow of Nate and of Hardison to get them walking. Eliot avoided looking at his teammates when they started walking and Nate hated that. He would have loved to assure Eliot that this would all work out, no matter how empty of an assurance that might be. But he wanted the Hitter to know that nothing would change between them, that he wouldn't be treated differently after tonight.
He didn't get the chance, however, because Eliot still had his eyes trained away from them and it didn't look like he planned to change that soon. And so they silently walked towards the mansion, anxiousness rising within Nate. He really needed to see Parker and Sophie now and judging by Hardison's subdued demeanor and tense shoulders, he felt the same way. The Hacker hadn't said a word since he had been handcuffed and his eyes darted to Eliot nervously, but he didn't dare to let them linger for too long. And Nathan could really understand that feeling. Hardison was still a young man and had sort of lived a sheltered life before he had joined team Leverage and he probably had a hard time coping with this, maybe even harder than Eliot... and that was a little disturbing in its own right.
They finally entered the house and on any other day, the art-fan Nathan Ford would have marveled at all the beautiful paintings decorating the walls in the hallway, but today his eyes were focused on Eliot's back, since he was walking behind the Hitter. And he could see that Eliot was embarrassed about his treatment, but he tried his hardest not to show it.
The Hitter was still staring at the ground in front of him, his hair shielding his face, but Nate saw how tense Eliot's shoulders were and Nate shuddered a little, because he knew what exactly Eliot could do when he was angry or cornered and once again he was glad that Eliot was on their side, because after this was over and they were all out save, Eliot would have his revenge. And it would be bloody and this time Nathan wasn't sure if he'd stop him like he'd done with Moreau.
Again Nate didn't have much time to contemplate this further, because suddenly they entered a spacious living room and his eyes immediately snapped towards Sophie and Parker.
The two women were sat on a white leather sofa, Sophie's hands cuffed and Parker's tied with a thick kind of rope and also secured with duct tape, probably so that there wasn't the slightest chance that the thief might be able to pick the lock. And again, Nate realized just how prepared Miller was for them.
/Too prepared/ he mused and there was this gnawing feeling that something else they hadn't really anticipated was in play here.
Sophie's voice, which shook just a little, interrupted Nate's thoughts and he looked at the grifter. She was pale and even though she had called his name, her eyes were focused on Eliot and for a second Nate thought that he had seen a tear in her eyes. Parker just sat there, staring straight at Hardison as if to anchor herself. And Nathan desperately wanted to assure the two women that this would be okay.
But before he could open his mouth, it was Eliot, who spoke. He finally looked up and stood as proud and tall as the chains holding him allowed and he even had a small smile on his face, directed at Sophie and Parker, who finally looked at him.
"Don't worry, I can handle this," was all he said, but his voice was so full of reassurance, that even Nate believed him for a moment, until he saw the way the Hitter's hands clenched into fists, nails digging into the skin.
"Eliot," he started quietly, but he didn't get further, because Miller once again made himself known.
"That's all really touching, but I have better things to do right now than listen to this," he explained, nodding to his men, who grabbed Hardison and Nate and forced them on the second couch in the room and all four members of team Leverage now had a weapon pointed directly at them.
Eliot grew rigid and yanked on his chains, because he knew what that meant.
"That wasn't the deal, Miller," he growled. "You said that you'd let them go."
Miller just shrugged.
"I lied," he simply said and his face was hard when he added: "They'll stay here for my own safety. Once we're done doing business you can all go. And you better come with me now, because there are ways to hurt them without actually breaking our deal."
Eliot simply stared at the man, ignoring the protests from Sophie, Nate, Parker and Hardison and after a few tense moments, he nodded slowly.
"Alright, lead the way," he said, suddenly calm and collected again, which was a sign that he was holding in a lot of rage and once again Nate was glad that he wasn't the one on the receiving end of that rage. But he really hated it when Eliot and Miller left the room, but there was nothing he could do about it, especially not with the rest of the team in danger and also with a gun pointed straight at his head. So he just sat there, ignoring the pleading looks from his team that wanted him to make things right, to assure them that everything would be alright.
Right now he just couldn't do it, because he knew things wouldn't be alright, at least not for a while after this.
/We'll get you through this, Eliot... I'll get you through this/ was the only thought running through his head while he tried to get comfortable on the couch, because he knew it was going to be an agonizingly long wait.
Once the doors to the living room had closed behind Eliot, Miller and two of his guards and they were a few steps down the hallway, Eliot finally spoke again through gritted teeth: "You do know that I could easily snap your neck once we're alone, don't you?"
He still followed Miller down the long hallway up a flight of stairs to what was supposedly the master bedroom, because Eliot had long ago figure out that this was exactly where they were going, no matter if it had never been said explicitly.
Miller turned his head and yanked on the leash, intent on making Eliot stumble a little to show who was in control here, but the Hitter didn't even bat an eyelash and held his footing easily, having been prepared for it the second he had felt the slack in the leash tighten. Miller only smiled at him then.
"Oh, I know all about you, Mr. Spencer, or Eliot, because I never call people I take into my bed by their last name," he stated and Eliot found himself flinching at those words, because finally the elephant was really in the room once it had been said out loud and it wasn't as easy to ignore anymore.
Miller grinned and then he continued: "Once I was made aware of who you are, I called a few more people and did my homework. So yeah, I'm fully aware what you can do, that's why the rest of your team stays here until you've fulfilled your part of our little deal," he explained and Eliot raised an eyebrow, especially when he thought about the wording Miller had used. He now really knew that there was something else going on that he hadn't figured out yet, but would probably find out sooner than he wanted.
"I guess we have a little problem here, I won't fulfill it until I've seen my team released safely and unhurt, because there is no reason for me to trust you that you will let us all leave once we're done," Eliot stated, the team's security the first thing on his mind and also the thing that helped him to stay calm. The Hitter knew that he was walking on thin ice and that essentially Miller held all the cards, but he'd try his damnest to keep them all safe.
Miller simply tilted his head.
"You do realize that I could simply kill all of them right now if you don't cooperate," he stated and unfortunately he was right, but Eliot refused to be intimidated.
"And you know that you'd be dead within seconds if you did.
Eliot and Miller stared at each other, both men not ready to back down. And both men were very aware of how dangerous their opponent was and that they had kind of a dead-end-situation here.
Eliot would kill and die for his team and Miller of course knew that and was very aware of the fact that that made the Hitter even more dangerous. And Eliot knew that, yes, he could kill Miller and there was nothing the other man would be able to do about it, but that wouldn't bring him back the team if Miller made good on his threat. So he sighed and made another offer.
"Listen, we both know what the other can do, so I'm gonna make you an offer. You let them, except one, go so I see that I can trust you and you still have leverage over me," he started and Miller looked at least a little interested.
"And what do I get in return of my show of good will?" he asked intrigued and Eliot knew that he'd at least get three of them released if he played his cards right. So he took a small step closer to Miller and leaned even closer so that he could whisper into the other man's ear, his voice a low whisper: "In return I'll make this night the best of your life, because I will show you what I can do instead of just lying there and taking it... and believe me, that will be worth-your-while."
When he draw back, he made sure that his breath ghosted over Miller's ear and cheek and when the other man shuddered, he couldn't help a small grin. Sure, Eliot still didn't want to do this, but it had to be done, so he had accepted it as a necessary sacrifice.
He then took a step back and looked at Miller, his voice back to normal levels now: "And once our deal is done, Nate can leave with me," he suggested, finally wanting to get this over with.
Miller looked at Eliot hungrily and, to Eliot's small surprise, he finally nodded and then told one of his men: "Go down there and release the two women and the Hacker, let them have their ear buds back, so that Eliot can hear them being released."
The man nodded and left and Miller fished another earbud out of his pocket, probably confiscated from Sophie or Parker, because Nate, Hardison and Eliot hadn't worn one when they got here. Eliot had insisted on that, because he didn't want them to listen to what was going to happen.
He put the earbud in Eliot's ear, using the close contact to grope the Hitter, but Eliot tried to ignore it, concentrating on the sounds coming through the little transmitter in his ear. At first he only heard shuffling and protesting voices, but after a few minutes, Sophie's shaking voice came through: "Eliot, Parker, Hardison and I are off Miller's property and heading back to the headquarters now and we're not being tailed. Nate is still with them, but he's okay." There was a short pause and then Sophie continued: "But Eliot, you don't have to do this, we'll get you out, we got you into this mess after all..."
Eliot's heart clenched a little at the guilt in Sophie's voice and his face softened a little.
"Soph, as I said, don't worry about me. I can take the punishment," he reminded her of a talk they had had a few years back when they'd taken down Jed Rucker.
"I'll see ya tomorrow, Soph," he finished and then motioned for Miller to take the earbud out, because if he listened to Sophie's broken and guilty voice some more, he knew he wouldn't make it through this night...
Miller immediately did so and then crushed the earbud under his feet and he put one of his hands on the handle of the door in front of them.
"Now that this is done, we can get to the more pleasurable things, Eliot. And I think I've kept my other guest waiting long enough."
Eliot's eyebrow shot up and he gave Miller a dirty, but questioning look, that made the other man chuckle.
"Oh, I probably forgot to mention that I'm not alone, Eliot. There is an old friend, who really wants to see you again to get reacquainted," Miller said with a wide grin while he opened the door to what was a huge master bedroom and Eliot stood rooted to the spot, paling a little when he saw the tall, dark haired man that sat on a comfortable looking armchair, looking at him with a smug smile and a glass of champagne in his hand.
"Hello Eliot, I guess you didn't expect me to see," the man said, his voice smooth and deep and it somehow helped Eliot to focus and he spat: "Shouldn't you be rotting in prison, Damien?"
to be continued...
So, did you like it? Hated it?
Maybe I should have gone with the stripper!Eliot plot bunny *ducks and hides*
Comments would be most appreciated none the less...