Title: Tempting Fate
Fandom: Law & Order
Pairing: Michael Cutter/Jack McCoy
Disclaimer: This is entirely a product of my own imagination, and I make no profit from it. I do not own Michael Cutter or Jack McCoy, just borrowing them for a while. Please do not sue.
***Mike sighed softly as he turned the corner on one of the streets leading to Jack's house; he usually didn't walk to his lover's home, but it had been such a mild night that he'd felt like going out. Besides, he needed some time to think.
How long had they been going on now? It had been over three months, and he was only getting in deeper with each passing day. He'd known that he wanted Jack McCoy, but he hadn't expected their involvement to be so .... intense.
That intensity was a part of what drew him to Jack; he didn't want to end their relationship, but it was moving so quickly. And he still had no indication of how Jack felt; there had never been any indication of whether or not the other man intended for this to last.
Mike bit down on his lower lip as he walked along, his head bowed, watching his feet as he placed on in front of the other. If he was honest with himself, it wasn't how long their relationship lasted that was really worrying him.
What bothered him more than anything else was the fact that Jack had never given him an indication of whether this was meant to last. He didn't want to keep on with this indefinitely, with no kind of assurance that they would have a future.
Did he mean something to Jack? Or was he only a slave, a toy to play with whenver they weren't in the office? Mike sighed at that thought; Jack had already taken their relationship into the office, judging from what had been happening there during the past few days.
He'd been shocked at the fact that Jack had seemed to find it so easy to be intimate behind the dubious protection of an unlocked door, but maybe that was the thrill of it. Anyone could walk in on them, and it would be perfectly obvious what was going on.
Jack was tempting fate by leaving that door unlocked -- just as Mike was tempting fate by leaving the door to his heart wide open. He was inviting Jack McCoy to push that door open wider, to take what he wanted, in any way that he wanted.
The problem was that the door was also wide open for him to turn around and walk out. Mike wasn't going to close that door; he wasn't able to. Now that it had swung wide to admit Jack into those precincts, it wouldn't be easy close it again.
He'd kept that door closed for so long; he hadn't let himself truly feel for anyone in longer than he could remember. He'd always kept a tight rein on his emotions, even keeping the people he considered his friends at arm's length.
How had Jack managed to push that door wide open -- and keep it open? There was more to his feelings for the other man than mere physical attraction; Mike hadn't wanted to admit it at first, but now, he was forced to do so.
Jack was more than just a lover. He'd fascinated Mike from the first moment they'd met; he had wanted to be more to Jack than just a colleague ever since the day he'd begun to work for the DA's office. And that fascination had only grown.
He had no explanation as to why he'd been so drawn to Jack. It was one of those attractions that no one could explain; there was nothing in his past to show that this was the kind of man he would develop an interest in. In fact, quite the opposite.
Mike had always dated men who were his own age, classically handsome men who couldn't be seen to be more or less on the dominant side than Michael himself. Jack was someone completely out of his sphere, an unexpected element.
Jack wasn't at all the kind of man that Mike would have thought he'd be attracted to. The force of that attraction had shocked him, but he'd accepted it. He knew better than to question his own needs and desires; he let them take him where they would.
But he'd known better than to tell Jack how he felt. He'd thought that he would simply suffer in silence, work for this man and never give him an inkling of how he felt, other than surreptitious longing looks that Jack would never acknowledge in any way.
He'd tempted fate by working in the DA's office at all -- and even more so when he'd become ADA. He was around Jack all day, every day; he couldn't keep his eyes from the other man when Jack was near him, and he was sure that Jack had noticed that.
No one could have been more surprised than he himself when Jack had called him into his office and made his little proposition. At first, Mike had recoiled from the idea; he wanted to be more to this man than a slave, a plaything, which was what Jack seemed to want.
As time had moved on, he'd come to think of himself as less of a slave and more of a .... necessity. He had noticed that Jack wanted to spend more time with him lately, that the other man had seemed almost -- well, possessive of him.
Jack had nearly snarled at anyone who'd come into the office lately when the two of them were working. Even though there had been no outward sign of his possessiveness, Mike could feel it in the air; Jack was asserting his alpha male rights over his property.
And to his surprise, he didn't mind being thought of in that way. He wanted to belong to Jack; their arrangement was something that he'd slipped into just as he would a warm winter coat, something that he'd grown comfortable with.
But now, he wanted to tempt fate further by asking for more. He wanted to be more to Jack than just a toy that the other man might eventually tire of. He wanted this to be a real relationship, not something that could be severed by either one of them at any time.
He wanted commitment. He wanted permanency. He wanted something that he was damn sure he couldn't have, even if he got down on his knees and begged for it. He wanted more than he thought Jack McCoy was willing to give him.
He wanted to be loved.
Love was one word Jack had never used in their relationship. Mike had no way of knowing how he felt; and he wasn't sure that he wanted to find out. He might not like what he heard, and he wasn't prepared to know that he meant nothing to Jack.
His footsteps slowed as he approached the block that Jack's house was on; taking a deep breath, he looked up, wondering if Jack was waiting by a window and watching for his approach, or listening for a car to pull into the driveway.
Jack was there, in that house, waiting for him, knowing that he couldn't stay away. Jack, the man he loved, the man he wanted to spend his life with. The man who was still an enigma to him, even after all the intimacy they'd shared over the past three months.
Was he tempting fate to ask for more than what he had with Jack? Was he something more to this man than just a colleague to work with during the day and to play with at night? Or was he only that -- a mere footnote in Jack's life, nothing more?
Mike wanted to be more than just a body to Jack. He wanted to be loved -- for himself, not just for the physical satisfaction he could provide. And he had no idea if Jack thought of him as more than that -- or even if the other man wanted to see him in that light.
He had no way of knowing unless he brought up the subject with Jack. But he couldn't do that in the office, where anyone might hear them -- and certainly not in Jack's house, where the other man was not only his lover, but his master.
Would it be tempting fate too far if he did bring it up with Jack tonight? Would Jack want to listen to him, or would his lover end their relationship if he thought that Mike wanted more? He had no way of knowing. Not unless he took that fateful step.
Mike looked up at Jack's house, directly in front of him. Taking a deep breath, he walked slowly up to the front steps, taking them one at a time, his feet dragging. This was the first time since he and Jack had begun their relationship that he hadn't wanted to go in.
It wasn't that he didn't want to see Jack. He wanted that more than he'd ever wanted anything; but he wanted to see Jack in a different way. He wanted them to meet as lovers, both of them on solid ground, confident in their relationship and what they shared with each other.
With a shaking hand, he reached for the doorbell, taking a deep breath and closing his eyes for a moment. Yes, he'd bring this up tonight. Even if he was tempting fate more than he should, he had to have an answer -- no matter what that answer might be.