"I can't believe they let you have these in the force," says Bruce, thumbing the delicate silver ring that loops through John's left nipple.

"Couldn't wear them on duty," replies John, eyes crinkled in a lazy smile. "Or, more specifically, couldn't tell anyone I was wearing them on duty."

"Did you ever get caught?" Bruce leans in close, rumpling the bedlinens as he wraps his lips gently around the right ring and tugs.

"Once," replies John, and hisses a little as his nipple tightens in Bruce's mouth. "Just after I got 'em, in fact. I think it was the last time I went on vacation, two weeks off the beat and I got 'em pierced the first day. They weren't- nnnngh- they weren't healed by the time I got back, and fuck if Sergeant Spiels didn't clock 'em within the hour. They were bigger rings then. Snagged on my shirt."

The metal had begun to warm under Bruce's mouth, and he slipped the end of his tongue through the tiny loop just enough to tug at it while he flicked the pebbled tip of John's nipple underneath.

"God that's good. Ugh. Bruce-"

"Go on," said Bruce around the ring, and set his hand to flicking the left ring back and forth, enjoying the tremors that chased through John's flesh.

John took a shaking breath. "I told Spiels that I got them for a girlfriend, met her on vacation, figured I would take them out before I went home but I thought she was keeper material. He- hunh- he let me keep 'em, but I was practically chained to my desk for the next two weeks while they healed, until I could switch to the smaller ones and get away with it. Bruce-"

No longer satisfied with merely tormenting John's nipples, Bruce rocked his body forward to make contact with John's, ignoring- or perhaps enjoying- the sheen of sweat that still gleamed on his body. "Girlfriend," he murmured, still not releasing the ring.

"Not a real one," says John, laughing in protest. "Not a boyfriend, either, before you ask."

"Why, then?"

"I don't know. I needed something that was just for me, you know? The force took everything I could give it. You just... you have to have something to call your own."

"Oh yes," smiles Bruce, wrapping one arm around John and pulling him closer still. One of his legs winds around John's, toes and heel following the slim strong lines of his ankle, and he closes his eyes, satisfied and content. "Oh yes, I know."