- Work in Progress
- Character Bashing
- Explicit Sex
- No Beta
- Violence - Canon-Level
- Alternate Universe
- First Time
- Future Fic
The chair seems a long way down as he sits at the desk with a heavy sigh. The long hours of travel and meetings are catching up with him, and he can’t imagine being any more tired than he is right now. Nevertheless, he must check through the messages from the club before he can finally undress, and rather than the strong, knowledgeable businessman that the investors expect to see, he can be the sub he really is again.
He knows that despite sinking their money into a sex club – albeit an upmarket one – the investors often only have small town experiences of strip clubs and lap dances, and they really have no idea what goes on behind the closed doors of a place like Douleur. They expect Ben and him to be just like them, with a vanilla outlook, and a business brain.
So that’s the face he shows them. Padraigh Connor Delacruz; clever, savvy entrepreneur. But if he’s honest, he hates him just a little. He can’t wait to be free; just wants to be his Masters ‘Paddy’.
But despite the stifling environment, the last three days was worth it. The contracts are signed on the building for the new club in New York, and they have more than enough venture capital to deal with the start-up costs and refurb of the prime location they had worked so hard to secure.
He couldn’t be more proud of his Dom. The success of the trip is all Ben’s doing. Just watching him work the room had left Padraigh half hard the whole time they were away. It was delicious, if not frustrating. Still, he knows his restraint will be rewarded…he shivers in anticipation. His Dom gives the best rewards.
He fingers the beautiful platinum collar that his Dom locked around his neck nearly four years ago. To the outside world it looks like an ornate chain; a medium sized, roughly triangular piece of lapis lazuli set in more precious metal hanging from it. The precious secret he holds dear, is that inscribed on the underside, pressed firmly against the hollow of his throat, is his Doms claim on him.
It simply reads, ‘Mine – BJD’.
Benjamin Joachim Delacruz; his lover; his owner; his saviour.
He flips through the sheaf of paper their PA has left them. Frances Desmond is an older woman who mothers them terribly, and for that they are willing to forgive her allergy to anything approaching 21st century technology. As he flips through the messages, three from the top is one from Daniel Jackson. Seeing the man’s name, the reason he needed saving comes to the forefront of his mind. Hearing Paul’s voice again had sent him into a spiral of depression, which had only been reversed by Ben taking him way, way down, as only he can.
He shakes his head to clear the memories that crowd in on him, not willing to go there tonight. That bittersweet emotion is quickly replaced by anger, as he reads Daniel’s message.
“Hey, hey, OK, I’m here. You sound pissed. What’s going on?” The calming presence of his Dom does very little against the deep concern Padraigh is feeling.
“Daniel Jackson was drugged in the club, taken home by the perpetrator, who watched over him all night in his hotel room, and then proceeded to try to con him.”
Ben’s eyes darken in temper as he takes the paper from Padraigh’s hand and reads it for himself. Paddy understands that; he knows his Dom needs to have all the information in order for him to make a considered decision about how the club should handle the issue.
“He’s sent us an email with a photo of the man…”
Padraigh quickly boots up his laptop and opens the email with its attached file. They are met with a candid photo of a face they both know quite well, albeit caught wide eyed with surprise – in fact he played with them once, but his aggressive style and drug taking didn’t sit well with them and they didn’t pursue him.
“I didn’t really trust him to play with, but you know my issues with people who aren’t in control during a scene. Despite our policy of accepting consensual drug taking, I would never have allowed him access if I had realised he was trolling the club for marks.”
Ben leans over Padraigh’s shoulder and opens the file for visitors to the club, searching both for the man’s name, and for his sponsor.
“Luc-Pascal Dufour. He was introduced by Claude Auberjonois. We need to instigate an investigation immediately. Who knows how many members this fucker has scammed,” Paddy rails. He looks up at his Dom, knowing his distress is written clearly on his face. This right here, is the kind of issue that all their vaunted security measures are supposed to prevent.
“And it has to be Daniel Jackson. Damn it, Ben, only the most famous man on the whole motherfucking planet.”
Ben places a warm comforting hand on his shoulder, his thumb drifting over the links of his collar, and Padraigh feels himself relax into the hold. His Dom is here and in control – he doesn’t have to face this total cluster fuck alone.
“He seems quite laid-back about it. The way his email reads it sounds like he handled it well, although we’re very lucky he doesn’t want to make a big deal out of it. It sounds like the bastard used GHB or something similar. Daniel’s atypical drug reactions seem to have been the only thing that saved him from being raped.”
Paddy feels sick to his stomach. How long has this been happening right under their noses.
“Do you think he had something on Claude? He’s such a sweetie, and I can’t believe he would knowingly bring a predator like that into the club, after all, it’s his investment too.”
Ben nods and digs his cell out of his pocket, as he walks away into the main room of their penthouse. Padraigh knows he’s ringing down to the club to see if Supreme Court Judge Claude Auberjonois is in tonight. This has all the makings of a major ball ache for all of them. They really need to call in the police, but the club has promises and liabilities to uphold first where its high profile clients are concerned.
He looks over the note from Franny. It looks like Dr. Jackson has left California, but he left them his cell number, and has requested a report on the outcome of their investigations.
Wanting to make contact as quickly as possible, he dashes off a quick email, assuring Jackson that as soon as there is something to tell him, they’ll definitely be in touch.
As he signs off and clicks ‘send’, Padraigh anticipates it won’t be too long before that happens; after all they do have several strategies in place for this kind of event. He stretches his aching back and thinks longingly of a glass of wine, a hot bath and his spanking bench in the bedroom. Maybe if they can get this all wound up before too long, it might not be too much of a forlorn hope.
But then he catches the sound of his Doms raised voice from the other room,
“What do you mean, ‘One of the Monitors already raised concerns about this man.’ Just when was I going to be fucking apprised that we had a black-mailing rapist with open access to our club…”
And right there, with a sinking heart, he realises hope is over-rated.
Today has been a really crappy day.
He puts the finishing touches to the fuselage of the jet fighter he has doodled at the top of his page of notes, wishing with all his heart that he was flying it right now, rather than trying hard not to show his irritation at the other people around the conference table.
He’s already disguised Daniel’s travel information with a ring from a coffee cup, and a file reference number. He’s also added the General’s travel information for today, just to throw them off the scent even more.
Hiding in plain sight. Not exactly what he was taught in SERE training, but he’s dealing with a man who’s been involved in the Blackest of Black Ops. Paul can’t afford to take a chance.
The Colonel wouldn’t have brought the paper into this meeting at all if he hadn’t been waylaid by his new CO and his ex-CO in the corridor, and practically frog-marched into the room.
Jack O’Neill is sitting directly opposite him, and the newly retired General looks like shit; grey-skinned and red-eyed. Too many sleepless nights and not enough food have left him looking ten years older. Unsurprisingly, the changes have all happened since Danny left DC.
Paul thinks it couldn’t happen to a more deserving guy.
So far, the meeting has been all operational information sharing. Paul wishes he could just stand outside with the Secret Service operatives, while these three obnoxious old men chew the fat about the minutia, most of which they will simply push onto him anyway.
That is if he stays.
Paul was informed just an hour before the meeting started that he has been removed from the ‘task force’ considering violations of the UJMC in the Stargate Program, particularly in relation to the new draconian measures that replaced DA/DT. At first, he was relieved, but now he feels in his relief he is letting his fellows down. At least when he was part of the system, he could help some of them, even if it was only to get them a dishonourable discharge rather than a term in Leavenworth. Now even speaking out of turn could find him on the receiving end of the law he was supposedly upholding.
He knows that Daniel believed he could do more on the inside, but as time passed, he found it harder and harder to hold his tongue.
So now he’s really considering retiring and going into civil rights law. He could support the gay servicemen and women just as well from outside, especially considering the regime that is in power. He is far too constrained by his rank to be able to speak out like he wants to, and there are things he knows that could really help.
“Any news on Jackson?”
Paul’s ears perk up at the question Sandsome aims at O’Neill, but he’s too much of an old hand to show it. He simply continues to jot down notes from the last item they discussed and feigns disinterest.
“I know he’s accepted a job in England…” Jack begins.
Paul knows that’s not common knowledge, so one of the geeks at the Mountain must have a contact in Oxford and has told Carter. Or maybe, the General is closer to finding Daniel than they thought – he hopes not, but he’ll contact Daniel as soon as he can to let him know that Jack at least knows where he’s headed, if not exactly where he is right now.
“Well, we need to put a stop to that, ASAP.”
He’s far too shocked not to react at the President’s comment. Paul clears his throat, and looks up, trying hard not to show his anger as he’s subjected to the laser-sharp gaze of the three most powerful men on Earth.
“Dr. Jackson has resigned, sirs. We have no legal means to keep him in the Program.”
“I don’t believe in absolutes, Davis. I want you to look into opening gambits so that we can… shall we say…encourage him to stay. I don’t know, increase his salary by 50k, 100k…offer him a bigger lab – a house – or a goddamned library named after him or something. I don’t know.”
Out of the corner of his eye, Paul sees O’Neill wince. Yep, the General knows as well as he does that Daniel has never been motivated by money or things. And surely the Old Bastard must realise declassification has made Jackson a multi-millionaire.
Then again, maybe not – the man is blind to so much he doesn’t want to see, that the US is fast becoming a laughing stock in the International arena. Not seeing the health of Daniel’s bank balance is small potatoes compared with Sandsome’s continent sized blind spot where the Russians are concerned.
“And if by some chance that doesn’t work,” Sandsome continues, almost as if it’s a done deal. “Then I want you to investigate ways we can use his status in the program, to cite him as a danger to operational security. That should be more than enough to prevent him leaving the country. The fucking Brits have no right taking one of our foremost minds, and I’m damned if I’m going to let that little pissant make us look like fools in front of them. He’s a citizen of the USA…”
Paul swallows down his delight as The Old Man walks right up and sticks his foot into Daniel’s rabbit hole. Davis is glad he had that conversation with his friend a few days ago, and that Danny gave him permission to delve into the issue, well as much as he was able anyhow.
“Well, sir. I pre-empted your questions on this issue and explored where we stood in regard to Dr. Jackson’s continued employment and residency…”
In another life, he would have been pleased to see the admiration in the gaze of the three men around the table; but now it just fills him with unholy glee to burst their closeminded, controlling little bubbles.
“…But I’m afraid I found that Dr. Jackson’s contract gives him an indisputable out clause; total control of his intellectual property and… Even if we could cite him as a high-level security risk…”
“Which we can’t. Daniel Jackson may be many things, but he knows how to keep a secret. I’ve seen him tortured to the edge of death by a Goa’uld System Lord, and he gave nothing away. Daniel would rather die than endanger the Earth.” Jack pipes up firmly, and surprisingly, Paul thinks, with more than a little pride in his voice. It’s obvious his regard for Daniel is gone completely – not in the professional arena anyway.
Faced with such surety, the other two can’t bring up any real counter argument; after all O’Neill’s the one who’s most au fai with the ins and outs of the SGC, being only a few days retired. And even though he has little to no respect for the General any more, Paul has to admit that the New Guy would be hard pressed to ever learn just a little of what O’Neill has forgotten about the Program.
Paul is more intruiged that O’Neill is sticking up for his old team-mate, especially considering how he’s treated him recently, but the General’s interjection gives credence to Paul’s information which it might otherwise lack – him being a lowly Colonel and all. So, he gives the guy a perfunctory nod of thanks before he continues.
“…As to his nationality status, it appears that Dr. Jackson is in fact a British Citizen, and holds a UK passport. Any attempt by us to prevent him from leaving the country would no doubt be met by a robust reply from the British Government. Given the status of their investment in the Program both before and after declassification, that could be problematic.”
Glancing across the conference table, he catches O’Neill giving him a considering look.
That is not good.
The man is far too sharp to miss anything that might give him an angle, and while Paul is sure he isn’t on board with the kidnapping idea that Sandsome is muting at the other end of the table, O’Neill obviously has some investment in keeping Daniel this side of the pond.
“You seem very well informed, Colonel. I have the highest level clearance and yet I was not aware of this information.” O’Neill’s tone is razor sharp. “Have you discussed this with Da… Dr. Jackson. Do you know where he is?”
Paul, however is ready for him. “It’s my job to make sure my CO’s have the legal and operational data they need, sir. I had the option to delve a little deeper than usual due to my post as your XO, and my links with the British liaison to the Program. Unfortunately, the fact of his citizenship was all I could find before my access was blocked. The circumstances under which Dr. Jackson received his British Passport are filed under MI6 Ultra-Violet clearance and appear to have taken place before his initial confirmation as a member of the Stargate Program. Unless the information is released to us by Prime Minister Mayes, there is no legal way of finding out. And to answer your second question, no, I am not privy to that information as I have not spoken to Dr. Jackson since his departure from DC.”
The lie falls easily from his lips. He only ever speaks to Daniel on his own personal, and very secret number, so there is no way he can be caught out. But his paranoia makes him think it might be a good idea to buy a couple of burn phones.
The General’s disappointment is clear. O’Neill no doubt hopes that if he can catch up to Danny, he can worm his way back into the man’s good graces. Any other time, Paul would have laid good odds that being the case. Daniel gave the clear impression in the past that he was willing to lay down and let Jack O’Neill trample all over him.
Well the last few days have shown them all that that isn’t the case…not any more. And about time too.
Paul will lie, cheat and falsify records if it means his friend can get away. This whole meeting has proved to him once and for all, that it is what he should do for himself too.
And while he’s putting his own departure into play, Colonel Paul Davis will use his position in the belly of the beast to uphold his friend’s freedom, and to his last breath the right for Danny to celebrate his Independence Day on the ashes of his friendship with O’Neill.
As he watches the bastards at the table clutch at straws to get the greatest mind of the age back in their greedy hands, he is aware of the despair that is creeping over the grey, tired countenance of one General Jack O’Neill.
‘Oh, how the mighty have fallen’, he thinks, gleefully.
As quickly as it started, the meeting winds up. Paul gathers his papers and courteously reminds the General of the timing of his impending flight to Minnesota. Dealing with Jack’s travel plans to his cabin is Paul’s last act as O’Neill’s XO, and coincidentally, gives him a way to help his friend get in and out of the SGC without Danny having to ‘accidentally’ meet the bastard there.
As he leaves the room, a smile is tugging at his lips and he realises that he’s changed his mind.
Today has actually been a really good day