Growing Up is Hard to Do

Title: Growing Up is Hard to Do
Author: Ladyholder
Series Order: 5
Banner Art: None
Pairings: None
Word Count: 10,583
Rating: G
Betas: Keira Marcos & Chris King
Warnings: Mentions of dubious behavior of a sexual nature. Nothing bad happens, but it is mentioned.
Authors Note: They were adults now. And that meant that they had adult responsibilities

 

Young Sentinel and Guide

Art by Fanarts

4. In the Fullness of Time

Early morning blowjobs were the bomb, Rodney decided as his mind was well and truly blown by the feel of John’s hot, wet mouth surrounding his dick. The feel of the suction, gentle at first and then jumping to something hard enough that he was worried about his nuts and then back to gentle, was driving him insane. There was no rhyme or reason to what John was doing, but it was wonderful.

When he finally came, Rodney felt his brain white out and he let it. Let his shields thin and surround his Sentinel with the pleasure the other man had given him. And as John nestled within his mind, Rodney could feel the orgasm that his pleasure sparked moving through him. It was times like this that he loved being a Guide. The ability to make John come all over himself with the feel of his pleasure was a heady thing. And he loved it.

Every morning since they had bonded, they had started it out by doing something interesting to each other. Impromptu massages, blowjobs, rimming, kisses… They were all things that they had tried on different mornings. Blowjobs though, seemed to be the favorite. Rodney hadn’t gotten up the nerve to ask John if he could feel the sperm in his cum moving. Not yet at least. He liked them too much.

Time to get up and have some coffee if he was thinking such insane thoughts. Right after he watched John’s naked ass walk towards the shower. It was good to be a Guide.

 

~//~

 

Over the last year Rodney had gotten his two doctorates: one in Sentinel studies, one in theoretical astrophysics from Northwestern. Plus one Sentinel as a bonus. Graduation meant that they were in Georgia so John could learn how to fly the Air Force way and more school, while fun, wasn’t enough. As he moved through some yoga forms, Rodney felt along their bond to check on John’s emotional state. Calm enjoyment and contentment were the topmost feelings, with excited glee running under everything. Whatever he was doing, he was enjoying himself and that was much better than the random flashes of anger he’d been feeling for the past few weeks.

The two of them had discussed what Rodney was going to do during John’s year long training and the idea of doing nothing had been tossed aside immediately. There was no way that he could sit at home and eat bonbons all day like some Guides, he would go crazy. Nor could he stay in Chicago to continue his schooling. So it was a certainty that he would have to have something, if not several somethings interesting to do while they were in Georgia. Their bond was too new, too strong to take the chance of anything untoward happening. So he had joined his Sentinel in the American South and was working part-time at the Sentinel/Guide Center and part-time on another degree, only this one was in Engineering.

His work at the Center was to help new Guides who were having difficulty constructing their main shields get them up and keep them up, in any situation. The work suited his gifts but not his personality and he had to work very hard not to bleed his irritation at how slow he thought people were over everything and everyone. His students were too fragile for him to be a total ass to them. Which he was willing to bet was why Dr. Sandburg had arranged the position for him. The man tried to be subtle about some of the lessons he tried to teach people, sometimes.

He was also getting the training he needed to be able to run his own Center. As an Alpha Prime Sentinel, it was expected that wherever John ended up, a Pride would form around him. Given that, his Guide need to know what he was doing in the care and protection of the group as a whole, not just the narrow focus his own Sentinel demanded. And with Rodney being a Wolf Guide, his need for the training was more urgent. His nature wouldn’t let him ignore any issues that came to his attention.

The work on his new Masters degree was going as smoothly as he could wish. That meant that he was tempted to rip his hair out frequently in frustration and confusion. He had gone through the basics of the work in his undergrad, but it had been several years since he had done any real, hands on work in the field. His advisers; Statler and Waldorf, found his frustration deeply funny and spent most of the time they were teaching him heckling each other’s efforts. Since they didn’t mind if he snarked back, they were his favorite people in the area, right after John. If nothing knocked him off schedule, Rodney was expecting to get his degree right before his Sentinel graduated flight school.

When clumsy mental fingers moved over his shields Rodney turned his attention outward from his yoga fueled meditation. Opening his eyes, he took in the worried look on the face of the shyest of his Center students. At 16 years old she was the average age for a Guide to come online. Once she had done so she lost any and all natural shields she had enjoyed before. The struggle to get them back and under her conscious control was making her clumsy, but he could see what she would be like after she was through the course. Right now, she only had four months of tutoring under her belt and that meant that she no longer slammed into his shields like a wrecking ball when she wanted his attention. He was very proud of her progress.

“What’s up, Hannah?” Rodney asked after he had moved out of the form he had been holding while he meditated. The prolonged stretch felt good, but he needed to not try and meditate and do yoga at the same time. He didn’t want to wake up from contemplating his navel to find he was permanently warped into a pretzel.

The younger Guide looked, outwardly at least, composed. But to someone of his abilities, she was a mass of conflicting impressions. Guilt, anger, shame, curiosity, determination, satisfaction and revulsion, all swirled around her. “Sir, I was at school and I really, really didn’t mean to!”

Ah. Well, then. “Let me guess… Someone saw your pendant, put two and two together and got five?” Rodney asked gently. Damn Dr. Sandburg for being right.

Hannah nodded quickly. “One of the bigger bullies in the school. He tried to get handsy with me and I requested several times that he stop. He didn’t and got even more aggressive.”

Oh, he had a good idea where this was going. Almost every Guide he knew at one point or another gone through something similar. Given that it had been the shyest of his students, he was going to insist that all of them got a basic level of hand-to-hand training before he left. No one was going to go through the same thing he had had happened to him before he bonded with John. No matter how good the whole experience had turned out to be. “Did he do anything else?”

Eyes grim, she nodded. “He tried.”

Well, shit. Pushing his empathy out a bit, he took another read on his student. The other, darker emotions were fading and the satisfaction was growing. “What did you do?” Rodney asked. He was expecting something interesting, because Hannah was one of his more creative students. Shy, but creative.

“I kicked him hard enough that it’ll take his nuts a full month to drop again,” Hannah said with pride. She was practically oozing satisfaction.

“Oh. Ouch.” Rodney winced in unwilling sympathy. It had been rare, but he’d been nailed there before. The pain had been blinding. He added vindictive and mean to his list of Hannah’s character traits. “So now what?”

Shrugging, Hannah dropped to the meditation mat in front of his. “I know it isn’t time for my class, but I need to calm down and all. Can you help?”

Nodding briskly, Rodney sank back down onto his own mat and dropped into the light, guided form of meditation he used when he taught the kids in his class. He needed to look after his student first. Then he could go hunt for the one who had caused her distress. After all, it wasn’t just Sentinels that people need to be wary of.

 

~//~

 

Flight school had turned out to be both breathtaking and deeply boring. Every chance John had to fly made his heart sing. The only other time he felt like that was when he was buried balls deep in Rodney’s body. However, no matter how much he wanted to try, he couldn’t stay in the sky forever and eventually had to touch the ground again. And every time he did, John felt the urge to fly again stirring in his blood.

John had fallen in love with flight the first time one of his father’s pilots had let him hold the yoke during a business trip. Awakening as a Sentinel had almost put the dream out of reach, then he’d gotten hold of his senses and now the experience of flight was even better because he got more out of it. Rodney helped in every way he could by giving him all the encouragement and help his Guide was able to supply.

The boring part of flight school was that he already knew the basics. Relearning what he already knew was tedious, but he needed to know the Air Force way of doing things. And he knew that even if he did have his civilian flight license, he still needed the knowledge on how the military did things. However, finding the differences wasn’t that entertaining. Really.

Flipping the page of his textbook, John tried to pay attention to the lesson he was attempting to absorb through the noise in the classroom. Ignoring the hubbub was second nature after college, but the assholes he was going through the course with weren’t helping by being pushy. And obnoxiously stupid.

“Hey Sheppard? Why don’t you go back and fuck your boy toy and leave the flying to those of us who don’t need a crutch to get through our day?” taunted one of his classmates. Going by the name Byers, he was the biggest braggart in the school and John couldn’t stand him. “I mean, as pretty as he is, he’s got to look great with a cock between his lips.”

Fuck. This. Shit. John turned to look at the other student, “You do realize that’s my Guide you’re talking about? I am well within my rights to beat the shit out of you for what you just said.”

The arrogant moron just grinned at him and opened his mouth again to keep up the taunting. “You can’t do that, Sheppard. Doesn’t matter what you think you are. That sweet piece of ass needs a real man. I think he would look great with his lips stretched around my cock.”

John felt a deep growl start rumbling in his gut, and reached for his control. He had too much training for some ignorant airman to get a rise out of him. Even if he was talking about Rodney. “Byers, if you value your life and your credit rating, you will shut up.”

“Why? You need a babysitter to get through life Sheppard. What do I have to fear from someone like you?” the other man jeered.

“You really need to get new material. Also, you need to actually read the information the Air Force supplies its personnel on Sentinels and Guides. You might learn something,” John said quietly, the growl that was rumbling in his chest clear in his voice. Getting into a fight with a mundane would be vastly inappropriate and he wanted to talk to the base Alpha before he took things into his own hands. John mentally sighed at the decision, but he had too much to lose otherwise. Turning his attention to his books, John tried to tune the moron out.

“Hey! I wasn’t done talking with you yet.” Byers said aggressively, and grabbed John by the bicep.

With speed born out of countless hours of training, John rolled out of his desk and grabbed the other man’s arm in a controlled take down. Then he put one boot in Byers’ throat and leaned forward, making certain the other man could see his expression. “This is your last warning. You do not talk about my Guide. You do not think about my Guide. If I hear that you are spreading shit about my Guide, you will live just long enough to regret your actions. Am I understood?”

John could feel the feral growl in his voice as he laid down the law. His classmates were milling around like so many sheep and he bared his teeth at them. The boy under his boot was shaking lightly and, from the changes to his scent, scared out of his mind. Good. Still, no one had moved or acknowledged his demand. Turning his attention to the onlookers, John stared hard at each of them. His voice rose to a roar as he demanded, “Am I understood?”

Frantic nods erupted throughout the room and the scent of fresh urine rose from the man under his boot. Satisfied with the level of cooperation he had gotten, John removed his foot from his prey’s throat and moved back to his desk deftly avoiding the offending liquid. He still had things to study.

 

~//~

 

Rodney kept a firm lid on his temper through the process of getting Hannah calmed down and her shields rebuilt. Every instinct he had said that the kid that had attacked her was bad news. People who preyed on Guides, marked or not, were rarely white hats. Hell, they weren’t even grey. He was going to need some help to get to the bottom of what had happened.

The Center was a decent sized place and it served that base and the surrounding area as well. The base had its own Alpha pair, but they were only Alpha there because they were the strongest S&G pair assigned to the base on a permanent basis. From what Rodney had found out from John, there had been several Alpha Primes who had passed through on training, but none had settled in the area. Which meant that as the only Alpha Guide Prime in the area, he was technically senior to everyone in the Center.

But then again, he was eighteen and didn’t have the experience to take care of this.

 

Claudia Quinn was a bit of an anomaly to Rodney. He had trained with female Guides and most of them were sweet, gentle women who put off the most calming of feelings. Claudia could do that, but most of the time, she radiated competence and security. He kind of envied her that. From what Daniel had told him, Rodney knew that he was putting out sex and happiness.

Not that he didn’t want to be everything John needed him to be but Rodney was tired of mundanes looking at him like he was tasty.

Knocking on the lintel of the office he was looking for, Rodney leaned in, “Claudia, can I get a few minutes of your time?”

“Sure Rodney, what can I do for you?” the other Guide asked as she minimized the document she was working on.

“One of my students is having a problem in school with a jock. It appears that he tried to sexually assault her. She got away by kicking the kids nuts into his throat, but I am worried since the assault happened in the first place,” Rodney explained.

“Who?” Claudia asked as she opened a new file and started a report on the incident. “And do you think she will be willing to push this?”

“Hannah? Yeah, I would say that yes, she is willing. She might be shy, but she has a lot of steel in her backbone,” he said after contemplating his student for a moment.

The other Guide smiled warmly at that news. “Good! So many don’t and we need to get the predators off the streets and away from the vulnerable.”

“Okay. Good. I have no idea how to get an investigation like that started,” admitted Rodney. He was thrilled to have someone else do this thing. He knew he wasn’t a people person.

The look Claudia flashed him was smug. “Well, you will be learning. Can’t let you out of my Center without all the training we can give you, now can I?”

Rodney sighed and nodded. Damn Dr. Sandburg anyway.

 

~//~

 

“Sheppard.”

The thing was he had expected him to arrive sooner. But it had been almost a full hour since the confrontation and John was still vibrating to the tune of ‘satisfaction’. Having the base Alpha coming to talk to him was hashing his smug.

“Sir?” John kept his tone respectful and looked at the Major who was nominally in charge of all the Sentinels on the base. “How can I help you?”

Major Liam O’Donnell looked around the classroom at the airmen studiously ignoring the two Sentinels and took a blatant sniff of the air, barely covering his wince at the faint smell of urine. Eyebrow raised at their behavior, he looked at his fellow Sentinel in question. John just shrugged, there was no way he could explain things right then and there without causing harm in one way or another. He’d managed to intimidate a full dozen members of the Air Force and that was going to cause some waves around base.

Jerking his head towards the door O’Donnell ordered John out. Swallowing a sub vocal growl of irritation, John packed his gear and looked at his instructor. Taking the nod as permission to go, the younger Sentinel moved around his Alpha and headed out of the building. All he wanted to do was learn how to fly and yet, assholes kept getting in the way of that. If Byers hadn’t been sent back to barracks to ‘Fix his shit’ per his instructor, John knew that he would be tempted to take his mood out on the moron.

Stopping under one of the many seating areas under some trees on the base, John looked at the Major, trying to figure out if the earlier confrontation was the reason behind his appearance. While he was working on what to say, he noticed Byers slinking back into the classroom. From the looks of the other man, pissing himself had brought him down a peg or two. Good.

“Lt. Sheppard, I caught the edges of your discussion with a fellow student this morning… Did I really hear another airman use sexually threatening language in regards to your Guide? Did he also lay hands on you in an aggressive manner?” the Major asked, eyebrow raised in inquiry.

John squirmed internally. He knew he had to answer, and he’d been planning on taking the whole event to the base Alpha. But he thought he would have a bit more time to calm down. Perhaps he should have gone earlier, but he and the base Alpha rarely interacted and he hadn’t wanted to cause too much excitement. That was no longer an option then. Taking a deep breath, John stood straight and laid out the whole series of events. Including that the instructor had been out of the room, and was mostly unaware of the events the Major had caught wind of. From the occasional nod that O’Donnell gave him, John was certain he had heard more of the mess that he was letting on.

As soon as he ground to a halt, explanation fully given, John snapped to attention. For all that the root of the argument centered on Sentinel/Guide issues, it still needed to be handled in accordance with the Uniform Code of Military Justice. Well, at least he thought it did. Northwestern hadn’t had problems like this between the ROTC there and the S/G students. John made a mental note to call Major O’Neill for some type of a primer on the Air Force and how Sentinels were supposed to report stuff. If nothing else, the older Sentinel might be able to let him in on the secret of growing a thicker skin concerning his Guide.

“Stay here. Do not listen,” Major O’Donnell growled. “When I get back, we are going to have a talk about what is and isn’t done in the US military and the Air Force in particular.” John could tell he was upset, the faint flush to the skin, eyes slightly dilated even in the face of the sun and the pungent aroma of anger were all clues to his emotional state. The younger Sentinel figured he himself was reeking with the lingering scent of anger and stress hormones. Since he had no idea how long the Major was going to be, John sat down and turned his attention slightly inward in an effort to bleed off the remaining emotional upset.

Even with most of his attention on his own internal landscape he heard the echoes of Major O’Donnell’s displeasure. With his attention inward, John found that the bond he had with Rodney was pulsing with mild irritation and curiosity. The Sentinel did his best to send some calm emotions back down the line to his Guide; trying to return the favor for all that the other did for him every day. From the brief pulse of disbelief and irritation, Rodney wasn’t believing him. He’d have to work on it later.

He really did try to give the meditation that he needed a try. For about five minutes after he had reassured himself that Rodney wasn’t suffering any ill effects from his bad mood. Then he listened in as Major O’Donnell ripped into Byers and his classmates. Phrases like ‘Disgraces to the Uniform’, ‘Future Rapists of America’, ‘Solitary confinement cells in Leavenworth’, ‘Chemical Castration’ and ‘Beating the ever living shit out of you until I feel better’ were at times growled out and others bellowed at the top of the Major’s lungs. John was very impressed. Especially since everyone in his class, including the instructor lost control of their bladders and pissed themselves. He took mental notes on the Major’s form and phrasing, he might need to use it someday.

John had to check his time sense to find out how long he had been sitting under the trees when the Major came back. Two hours was a long time for what should have been a simple dressing down, but he wasn’t going to push it. His talk with the Major about the rights, duties and responsibilities of a Sentinel in the military was enlightening and extremely mortifying. He was convinced that he never needed to know that he and Rodney were totally covered if there was ever a time when they needed to complete a full sexual bonding in public. The UCMJ covered that plus hand-holding, hugging, kissing and in general, getting into his Guide’s space to the point of insanity and more. Plus his ass was covered for what he had done to Byers and anything further if it had been needed. He was still going to call Major O’Neill because there were some questions that O’Donnell couldn’t answer, his Guide was also in the Air Force and O’Neill’s wasn’t. John snorted slightly in amusement at the thought of Rodney joining the military. No, that just wouldn’t be a good idea. For anyone.

 

~//~

 

The best thing about being bonded, as far as John was concerned was the license to touch his Guide. In fact, he had been encouraged to do so frequently. Today, after the confrontation with Byers and then the base Alpha only an hour later, John knew he needed to saturate himself in the physical reality of Rodney McKay. To watch his hands as he touched, tasted, smelled and listened to the sounds of Rodney’s body and mind as the whole of the man who brought his senses back to an even keel.

John slipped into the Sentinel safe married officers barracks he was sharing with his Guide, happy to find the other man home. Prowling forward, John let his senses flow throughout the apartment, looking for clues to how Rodney was dealing with the day. The air in the main room was filled with stale stress hormones and the residual bite of anger, but the scent was old, fading. Rodney had been leaking them for a while, but when John asked, he had been told that his Guide would let him know when he could. The freshest scents were coming from the bedroom, calm contentment layered with sleep, and there was no sign of stress from sleeping Guide. From the level of decay in the anger scents, John was certain they had nothing to do with his incident earlier in the week. He would have to ask what the cause had been later.

John kept his mind calm with an effort since he wanted to be naked and in bed before he woke Rodney with his need. Slowly, carefully John climbed under the covers, taking care not to let any of the rooms cool air slip under with him to wake Rodney up. As soon as he relaxed into the comfort of the mattress, his Guide turned towards him and flowed over him like a blanket. John tucked his face into the hair on the top of the other man’s head and breathed deeply of the scent of his Guide. Exhaling carefully John felt the need to sleep crawl over and let it. Right now, he needed the peace of sleeping with Rodney more than he needed to bond or even sex. They could get to the whole bonding thing later.

When the morning came, John woke up slowly, content to lie in bed. Stretching his senses out the Sentinel made certain his small territory was secure. At night, no matter what his intentions were before he fell asleep, his senses expanded to cover everything that was his. They never really went beyond the limits of his territory, but it was always hard to pull them in, to maintain his daily level of paranoia. This morning he had something, no someone, better to wrap them around than a building.

First came scent and taste. The two senses were so closely entwined that it was hard to have one without the other. Burying his nose in the hair at the nape of Rodney’s neck, John breathed deeply. Opening his mouth, John lipped the other man’s ear, drawing the lobe in to suckle on. The taste of Rodney was there, but it wasn’t enough. Letting go of his Guides earlobe, John trailed his lips down the length of his neck, tasting each bit of skin as he passed.

Sound and touch joined in as he moved his lips over the sleeping man’s jugular. The steady beat of his Guides heart pulsed against his lips and ears in a steady rhythm. The echo of his Guides blood rushing through his veins was like listening to the ocean, soothing and immense in its ability to move the planet to its will.

John ran his fingers down Rodney’s sides, enjoying the feel of soft smooth skin. His Guide, like every Guide who graduated from an American Sentinel/Guide program, was basically hairless. Well, he had the hair on his head, his eyebrows and eyelashes, but that was it. It made for a wonderful sensory experience for their Sentinels and less chance for unintended drama due to grooming. John was just glad that Rodney had had the procedure done before he met him. His own journey to hairlessness had been painful in ways that he still didn’t have words for. If Rodney had done it after they had gotten together, he wasn’t certain that he would have been able to control his reaction to his Guide being in pain.

Impatient to see the skin that he was touching and tasting John slowly peeled back the layers of blankets they had covered themselves with during the night. Their combined scents rose from the folds and he drew in a deep breath. To John the combination of their scents meant home and it was another indicator that at all was well in his world.

Dawn looked good on Rodney, John decided. The other man had milk white skin that glowed in the pale light. The shadows and light were fascinating to see and the Sentinel was happy to trace the dips and valleys of his Guides body with his lips and hands. John had his lips around a dusky brown nipple when he felt Rodney’s cock stir against his leg.

John looked up and saw two slivers of blue eyes staring down at him, showing the haze of sleep and quickly building lust. Giving the nipple in his mouth one more firm suck, John let it go to kiss his Guide further awake. While he was there he took the time to explore every nook and cranny of Rodney’s mouth. When the other man was shifting against him, hips thrusting against his own, John broke the kiss.

Pressing a final kiss to his Guide’s lips, John worked his way down Rodney’s neck, nibbling on the tendons running its length. When he hit the spot where shoulder met neck, he sucked and gnawed a deep red hickey mark on it. The urge, the need to cover Rodney in vivid possession marks was stronger than normal and he could only blame the leftover mess at flight school for the slip.

Whatever the cause, his Guide apparently liked it from the pulse of lust that hit the air and their bond. John groaned under the onslaught and pushed his cock against the bed, enjoying the stimulation. He moved down Rodney’s body, making certain to pay special attention to his nipples. The little spots of flesh were so very sensitive and John adored playing with them. Licking, sucking and rolling the sensitive nubs with his lips and mouth, John teased Rodney until his Guide cried out and came. His hips bucked against his belly, cock pulsing long jets of semen over John’s skin. The Sentinel could feel the shields that surrounded his Guide’s mind blur and wrap against his own, brushing the edges of his own mind.

Sitting up, John leaned over to get the slick and dropped it beside him on the bed before leaning over to clean up Rodney with his tongue. There was a faint sweet taste to the other man’s cum and John knew it was from the fruit he insisted his Guide eat instead of the candy he wanted. Humming lightly as he chased every bit down, John took Rodney’s cock into his mouth while his fingers carefully circled his anus, brushing lightly over the guardian ring of muscles. When he felt them relax, John reached out and grabbed the slick, carefully coating his fingers before going back to slowly, carefully opening his Guide up for more intimate play. He had the time and the space to take it slow and he wanted… No, he needed to do this right.

John let Rodney’s cock slip out of his mouth as he sat up again, watching the sight before him. Rodney’s head was thrown back, hands, gripping the headboard of their bed as his hips flexed against the thrust of his fingers and moans were falling from his lips like water. John loved that he was able to drive his partner so far out of his mind that he just let the physical take over and enjoyed himself. It was a heady feeling. Gently withdrawing his fingers, John made sure to coat his cock with the excess on them. When that wasn’t enough, he grabbed the bottle of slick and drizzled more on. The feel of his hand was great, but John held off, squeezing the base of his cock in an effort not to come. He had a better place to be before he lost it. And as much as he wanted to slide into the wet heat that Rodney was offering, he needed a bit more. “Rodney? I need you to flip over babe.”

Lust hazed blue eyes just looked up at him and then Rodney smiled and turned over. John swallowed heavily as his Guide pushed himself up so his ass was presented and his shoulders were still on the bed. The position screamed submission and that tripped all of his triggers. The grip he had on his dick was just short of painful and he was grateful that he had it. Coming now would be both embarrassing and a downer.

Sliding into the slick heat of his Guide’s body was always a glorious rush of sensation. Today? Sliding into Rodney when he was offering up everything was a feeling like no other. He held still, his body blanketing his Guide’s, his cock sheathed to the hilt inside the other man. John could feel the minute tremors of Rodney’s previous orgasm, and he let his senses loose to surround him. From the way that his Guide went absolutely boneless, John was certain that he knew what he had done. He used each senses, wrapping them around his Guide until they all blended together into a whole that was… Rodney.

When the last faint shiver and quake of his Guide’s pleasure had finished moving through the man below him, John sat up and started to move. Each snap of his hips caused his cock to scrape over the small swell that denoted his partner’s prostate, drawing a moan or a sigh from the lips that were hidden from his view. The smell of sex was heavy on the air and John breathed it in, savoring the flavors on his tongue.

The movement of his hips was as steady as he could make it and John held onto this control with both hands. Each time he buried his cock in Rodney’s body the pleasure of it threatened to make his eyes cross. When Rodney clenched down on him as he pushed in, actually holding him in place for a moment before he could repeat the movement, they did cross. God, he loved his Guide.

The added pressure, the heat, the smell of them, of sex was too much. Leaning forward, John reached around and gently gripped Rodney’s cock, stroking it in time to the thrusts of his hips. Hot and heavy, the pressure of his orgasm rippled out of him and John bit his lip in an effort not to roar out his satisfaction. His hips stopped moving and he could feel the reaction each pulse of his orgasm was drawing from his Guide. He had just enough coordination through the haze he was feeling to stroke one more time on the cock in his hand and then he could feel Rodney joining him in the pleasure. His shields were thin due to the overload and when Rodney reached his peak, they blended together.

If his balls hadn’t been empty, John was firmly convinced that the feel of his mind and Rodney’s mind blending together would have sent them over the edge into another orgasm. As it was, the pleasure of the whole event caused him to give it another try. Once he recovered, and maybe had some coffee and breakfast, he was going to see if he could talk Rodney into doing that again.

Rodney rolled over and opened his eyes just enough to see the sleeping face of his Sentinel. His body felt deliciously well used and the bond between the two of them was strong and solid. Smiling lightly at the sight before him, he sighed in contentment. Maybe the whole flight school/American South/repeating grad school thing wasn’t so bad after all. For mornings like this, he would put up with a hell of a lot more.

Snuggling down into the blankets on their bed, Rodney went back to sleep. The world would be there in the morning.

 

~//~

 

Monday morning came way too soon and Rodney had something that needed to be settled. The Center had moved quickly on the events surrounding the incident with Hannah and her assailant. Each and every student Guide and Sentinel had been interviewed and a list of possible suspects had been drawn up. Only then did S&G pairs go out and talk to the parents of the kids in question, and let them know that they were going to be interviewed as well. For the kids who were under-aged, they had made certain to get parental permission for Rodney to interview them. It hadn’t been easy in a few cases, but eventually even the most stubborn of parents had come around.

On the drive up to the school where his baby Guides were going, Rodney reflected that there were many good things he liked about living in the American South. The sense of community, the ability of people to support each other, the food was a definite plus, the sense of civic pride was outstanding, and the preponderance of little family run stores couldn’t be beat. But there were a few cons to the place and one of the biggest for him was the heat. He was Canadian for Einstein’s sake! Thank goodness he had taken Dr. Sandburg’s advice and gone for linen based clothes. Anything else and he would be melting.

Parking the car he and John shared in the shade, he gathered his messenger bag, water bottle and the paperwork on of all the students who had pressured, propositioned or even attacked his kids and tucked it into the main compartment of his messenger bag. There was no way he was losing that. The walk up to the school was hot, sticky and in general, miserable and he was glad to reach the air conditioned comfort of the main office. Rodney paused as soon as the door closed and enjoyed the cool air running over him. He was going to find out who had invented air conditioning and send that person flowers, he decided. They were geniuses and that deserved something.

“Well hello sugar! Don’t you look warm. There’s water in the fridge over there if you want some,” said the older lady sitting at what had to be the receptionist or secretary desk. Her hand was pointing in the direction of a mini-fridge against the outside wall of the office and Rodney nodded.

“Thank you, but I am fine,” he said as he waved his water bottle. Both his and John’s levels of paranoia regarding his allergies were happier if he brought his own beverage with him when he went out. There was no way he wanted to go through another trip to the ER for anaphylaxis.

“Okay sweetie. If you need a refill, just grab a bottle out of there. Now are you here to register for school?” she said. Rodney walked closer and took a discrete look at the desk to look for a nameplate or something to clue him in on who he was talking to. Spying the nametag pinned to her shirt, Rodney took note of it quickly. Apparently ‘Susan’ thought he was here to be registered for High School. Must be because of how young he looked.

Reaching into the pocket of his suit jacket, Rodney pulled out his S/G Center ID and flipped it open. The flash of red and gold was instantly recognizable to anyone in a position of authority and he wasn’t above using that to get his way. “No, thank you. My name is Dr. M. Rodney McKay and I work for the Sentinel/Guide Center here in town. I am here about a situation involving a number of my students who are enrolled here and their classmates. I need to speak to the Principal. Please.”

Susan just looked at his badge and then back at him. He could see her assessing him and reaching an erroneous conclusion. It must have been him being polite. “Really, dear. The Center will not be happy that you are trying to impersonate one of their people. What grade are you here to apply for anyway?”

Cocking an eyebrow at her words, Rodney stared at her and then took a look at his ID. It was right side up, had his picture and the fact that he was a Guide written in bold letters on it plus it had the crest of the Center. Where was she getting fake? Quietly, with the push of his abilities behind the words, Rodney tried again, “Lady, I have no idea what in the hell you are talking about. I am here on Center business and I need you to get the Principal of this school. NOW.”

The push, the weight of his gifts seemed to break free something in Susan’s head and Rodney waved the ID again when she gave it a harder look. He could tell the moment that she fully caught the clue, because her face went very white and he felt a small bit of vindictive glee at her fright. He knew that he looked young, but there was no reason to disregard him just because he didn’t match her preconceptions. She took a deep breath and then plastered on a smile before asking, “Is there anyone else you need to see today, Dr. McKay?”

Better.

“I will need to talk to Hannah Titum after the Principal and I get finished. Now this will be a private discussion, so we need someplace other than here to talk,” Rodney said quietly. He was not going to use his abilities to get what he wanted. Too much and he could burn out the secretary and leave her mentally exhausted for days. Mundanes weren’t built to handle what he could dish out. The only one that realistically could was John. Rodney followed Susan as she quickly escorted him to a small conference room and settled in to wait for the Principal to show.

When the administrator finally did show up, Rodney had been waiting for fifteen minutes and was massively irritated at the man. He had set himself up in the power position for this meeting and there was no way that he was going to relinquish any of his. As soon as the door opened, Rodney stood up, watching the other man enter for any clues as to how this was going to go.

Strike one.

The man held out his hand to shake Rodney’s as he introduced himself, “Hello, my name is Principal Barry Cummings. I understand that you are Dr. McKay from the Sentinel/Guide Center? How can we help you today?”

Tilting his head in a bare acknowledgement of the other man’s introduction, and avoiding the hand offered to him like it carried plague, Rodney pulled his ID out again and set it on the table between them. Then he pulled the envelope containing the names and investigatory information on of all the students he wanted to see that day out of the messenger bag. Some of them were his Guides, some of them were the little asshats that needed to get dealt with and the rest were the names of students that his baby Guides said were interesting. Interesting to a Guide had a number of meanings and he planned on exploring all of them. The rest of the paperwork stayed inside the envelope.

As soon as the ID case was set on the table, Cummings withdrew his hand and fisted it at his side. “Ah. It isn’t often that we get a fully trained Guide out here, Doctor. Forgive me if I gave any offence, I truly didn’t mean to. How can we help you today?” He asked as he sat down opposite Rodney.

Rodney waited to sit until the other man had settled in. “We have a problem, Principal Cummings. Some of your students are making my Guides deeply uncomfortable. I want it to stop.”

“Have the Guides caused any trouble? We have several that I know of going to school here,” the older man asked as his fingers twitched towards the envelope.

Strike two.

“The Guides haven’t been the problem and from all that we have determined, the problem has involved enough of your students to get us concerned about their safety,” Rodney said evenly. “I am well within my rights to pull every Guide, latent or not and every Sentinel, latent or not, out of this school. Tell me why I shouldn’t.”

Eyes hard, Cummings stared at him and Rodney stared back, eyes equally hard. “What happened, Dr. McKay? Will you tell me? Or should I try and guess?”

Rodney raised an eyebrow at the man’s tone. “Several of my Guides have reported physical altercations with students here, ranging from pushing to attempted assault. There has also been an upswing in verbal and mental abuse being sent their way. The incidents have been getting more and more blatant. You can count yourself lucky Principal Cummings that the latent Sentinel that goes to this school hasn’t blown his top at how his tribe has been treated. If he does, you will be lucky if he only beats on people until he feels better about them.”

They were quiet for before Cummings spoke again. “Understood. Well, then. The first thing I will need to do is start an investigation of my own. I know that the parents would want us to have one that id independent of the S/G Center’s findings. To be frank, we have found too many instances where teenagers have lied about things like this and I would hate to see someone innocent be taken down for something like that. I won’t tolerate a witch hunt in my school.” His face was blank and Rodney let his shields thin enough to get a read on the other man. Panic, worry and calculation were running across the man’s emotional landscape. Time to completely wreck his day then.

Reaching forward, Rodney pushed the envelope sitting beside his ID towards the other man. It was legal sized and big enough to hold all sorts of things. In this case, it held a sanitized copy of the investigation he had conducted as soon as Hannah had come to him with her problem. “The Center has already run its investigation, Principal. And submitted it to the school board along with the parent of the students. There is a list of students in that envelope. I need to see all of them, one at a time, today. They can line up and wait to be interviewed in the hallway outside.”

When Cummings opened the envelope and pulled out the list of students, Rodney was almost overwhelmed by the panic that radiated from him. The names listed were most, if not all of the star athletes in the school. Not all of them were part of the ‘Junior Rapist Club’ as one of his baby Guides had called them, but given everything, they needed to know who was involved and how deeply the rot went. And from what Hannah had said, the latent Sentinel that was going to school with them was one of the football players. Rodney needed to see how close he was to coming on line.

“Dr. McKay… These are all good kids. I think that I am going to have to decline you the chance to interview them. At least until I have informed their parents as to what is going on,” Cummings murmured as he looked over the case against his students. Rodney knew the case was airtight. It had to be. The Sentinel/Guide Center was not in the habit of accusing kids of being dangers to anyone without just cause.

Strike three.

“You don’t get that option, Cummings. Moreover, all of the parents were informed of the investigation already. For the kids under eighteen, their permission slips have already been signed.” Rodney said, his voice carrying the weight of his position.

He could see the moment that he accepted the inevitable. The man folded in on himself. “Alright, Dr. McKay. You win. I’ll have Susan get them and start sending them in.”

 

 

 

It took him six hours to work his way through all the names on his list. Well. Minus two. He had found another latent Guide and a sensitive, plus a whole lot of jocks who thought that the Guides that they went to school with were their own private playground. He had been very happy to inform them that wasn’t the case. Most of the morons had dropped the idea quickly, only a few of the more aggressive boys had pushed the issue with him.

A judicious use of Voice and some very pointed comments as to what they could expect when the local Pride showed up to talk to them had finished the job. Somehow, Rodney was fairly convinced that the football players he had had to deal with in that fashion would be hesitating to touch anyone in a sexual manner, ever again. That had been what he was aiming towards after all.

The final two were in the halls and Rodney looked over at Hannah. If he was right, there was no way that he wanted her in the room with him while he dealt with her attacker. Thankfully the conference room they had taken over had two exits. “Hannah, I know you want to stay in here when I talk to Ethan. But I can’t let you, because I am going to be talking to Beauregard first. This needs to get settled and if you are within reach, I have a feeling that he will try something truly stupid.”

His student huffed in frustration. She had sat through all of the other interviews and had been quiet enough that most of the kids he had seen hadn’t noticed that she was in the room. The few who had, had all been talented to one degree or another.

But the last two on his list were different kettles of fish all together. The latent Sentinel was on the varsity football team as the quarterback, and was being looked at by a number of colleges as a possible scholarship candidate and he was also a straight ‘A’ student. Rodney was quietly wondering what his character flaws were because no one was that perfect. He was even in his coach’s good graces.

Frankly he was looking forward to talking to Timothy a lot more than he should.

The other one, the student who had started this whole mess off? He wasn’t looking forward to talking to Beauregard Carter much at all. There were way too many red flags on this kid for him to be comfortable in his presence when his Sentinel wasn’t available. Thankfully, Rodney knew that he had back up.

When Beau walked in the door, he was broadcasting aggression and irritation for all to see. He was also trying to use his larger size to intimidate Rodney. He didn’t even bother to sit down before leaning into the Guide’s space and growling out, “So, I’ve been sitting out in that hall since nine am. I figure you get to tell me why. And then make it up to me.”

Rodney stared at him, unimpressed with his posturing. “Sit. Down,” he commanded quietly. He was using the barest touch of Voice to keep on top of the meeting. Beau dropped into the chair across from him and deliberately sprawled out in a position of lazy relaxation.

Eyebrow raised at the show, Rodney stared back at the high schooler. “My name is Dr. Rodney McKay. And you are Beau, right? Any idea why I called you in here?”

“Maybe. Maybe not.” Low cunning flashed across the boys face. “But I bet you can tell me.”

McKay held his peace and watched. He was honestly curious to what was going to happen in this interview. To push things along, he let the anger he was feeling about the whole situation trickle out to wrap around the room, then he watched to see what his guest would do.

Beau sat still for several minutes as the impression of large predator moved through the room. As a Wolf Guide, Rodney knew that what he was doing was on the far end of appropriate, but he wanted the punk in front of him to know that there were bigger and badder things out in the world than him, and that they wouldn’t tolerate his behavior.

Finally, after five sweaty minutes, Beau broke. “What are you?”

Rodney stood up and leaned across the table before smiling slowly. “The bigger predator.” he said softly before pushing the report on the kid’s behavior over to him. “And you have pissed me off enough that I am going to rearrange your whole world.”

The whole, unredacted file was a work of art in its total lack of mercy for anyone in it. Hannah had even been mentioned in a negative light and that was rare in altercations between S&G personnel and mundanes. “Read it,” Rodney commanded.

The sections on Beauregard Carter were the most damning of the whole document, and the only thing he was letting the kid see. He certainly didn’t need to know the personal failings of his classmates. The investigative team had laid out a scathing expose on the senior’s personality and how the traits he was expressing would be serving him in the future. The general consensus was that they were going to get him a straight shot into a jail cell without interference.

And the interference was coming. Beau’s parents had been horrified at the direction their son was heading. They had been determined that the boy was going to be put in counseling to see if they could break the thought patterns that were leading him astray. Rodney wasn’t convinced that what was wrong with the high school student was as simple as fucked up thoughts. But he had been given permission to reinforce the lesson of ‘No Touchie’ in any way that he had to.

Apparently Beau had enough of a conscience left (or could act like he had one) to realize where he was heading. Or at least, project the physical cues that would fake it for anyone who wasn’t a Guide. Rodney let his eyes narrow in suspicion before reaching out with his gifts. Carter had no shields and couldn’t stop, or even notice the scan. What Rodney found was what he had been expecting, but had really hoped that he wouldn’t find. Beau Carter was… warped. He was thrilled that his behavior towards Hannah was unwelcome. And from the anticipation coloring his mind, he wanted to go further than he had.

Rodney sat quietly and quickly slotted the newly confirmed information he had in with the impression he had gathered before the scan. He done a brief surface scan of the kid’s parents during the interview process and they were totally… normal. There were no hints from them that they had a child like this. But they did. And he had a feeling that the revelation was going to break their hearts.

He had no idea what the technical term was for the mind sitting across the table from him, but he was betting it was bad. Beau hadn’t escalated to hurting humans yet, just pushed his weight around and loomed, but Rodney could see that the day for him to cross that line was coming. And he wasn’t qualified to deal with it all. After all, the mental, physical, and emotional health of the Sentinel in his care was his specialty, not mundanes. That was a different kettle of fish all together.

When Beau reached the end of the report and looked up, Rodney raised an eyebrow at the perfect façade he projected. “Dr. McKay…”

Decision made, Rodney shook his head. “Yeah, no. You aren’t going to get a chance to wriggle out of his. And you are going to be evaluated to see what is wrong with you and what can be done to fix things,” he said quietly. He was tempted to use a shade of Guide Voice on him, but given what he now knew, he wasn’t certain if it would even register.

The pleasant look on Carter’s face dropped off and it smoothed out into a blank canvas, perfectly matching the lack of emotions behind it. There was still no shield around the other’s mind, just nothing. Head tilted in a manner that Rodney would call curiosity in others, Beau asked, “And what do you think you can do, Doctor? You are as weak as the girl. Guide.”

Looking across the table at the predator in front of him, Rodney smiled grimly. Always with the underestimating. “Sorry to disappoint you, but I’m not as harmless as you seem to think I am.”

Rodney took a deep breath before lowering the boom on the student before him. “By the authority invested in me by the Department for Sentinel and Guide Protection, I pronounce you guilty of attempted rape and potential Pair Bond interference. Punishment is to be sealed within your own mind for however long it takes us to get you to the Center and turned over to people with more experience with this shit than I have.”

Reaching out with his mind, Rodney wrapped it around Beau’s and twisted. He used the technique that Dr. Sandburg had taught him to lock up the minds of those who were a danger to others. And themselves. He wasn’t able to get his hands under the now unconscious students head before it hit the table with a meaty ‘thud’ though. He really hoped that wasn’t going to leave a mark. Because the kids parents were going to freak at what he had done. Sealing someone ‘in’ was horrific to say the least.

Rodney leaned back in his chair and looked at the ceiling. What a fucking can of worms this had turned out to be. “So, Sentinel Grimes, if you would be so kind as to come in and get this kid out of here?”

The door to the lobby opened and the final student to be interviewed peeked in and Rodney cocked an eyebrow at the sight. He hadn’t shouted, and neither had Beau before he had locked him in. Plus the sound of his head hitting the table had been pretty muffled, all things being equal. “I am guessing that you are more online than we thought then?”

“Oh, yeah,” Timothy muttered. “Do you want me to take this guy out to Sentinel Grimes?”

“Hmmm… In a minute,” Rodney said as he carefully examined the young man in front of him. Like Beau, he was seventeen, on the football team and a jock. However this kid seemed to be… decent. “So I’m guessing that you have heard everything said today?”

Face showing a rueful look, Timothy nodded. “My hearing was the first thing to come online and well, yeah. I won’t be saying anything, but I will be keeping a closer eye on the Guides here in school. I had no idea that we had so many assholes trying to get an education here.”

“Better get used to it. There are a lot of them out in the real world,” Rodney said dryly.

He fell silent as the team he had arrived with entered the conference room. They were eerily efficient and had Carter contained and on his way to the Center in minutes. Grimes paused and talked quietly with Tim before ushering him out the door, but Rodney wasn’t paying attention just then.

From the other side of their bond, John had noticed the rush of power moving against the edges of it and was pressing against his side, demanding attention. Love, concern, worry and frustration leaked down the link into his mind and Rodney pushed calm back up it. He was fine, just tired from manipulating a mind that was both blind and wholly unwilling. And irritated that he had had to seal the kid in.

It took longer than he liked for their bond to settle and once he was calm enough, Rodney fired off a text message, making sure that John was okay. He got an unhappy face and nodded. They both needed some meditation and full bonding session. No sex. He got another unhappy face for that last bit, but oh, fucking well. Sex could wait.

The gentle feel of another Guide brushing against his shields caught his attention and Rodney looked up to see Claudia. Her eyes were kind as she looked down at him and he saw she was holding out a cup of hot chocolate. “You look like you need this.”

The cup was warm in his hands and he sipped at it gratefully as he brought his emotions under control. “Am I going to be needed to bring him out of where I sealed him in?” he asked his senior Guide. Again, while he might be more powerful, he wasn’t the most learned in the mental arts. In this, and as many other things, he was deferring to Claudia’s depth of experience.

Claudia shook her head. “No. I was able to follow what you did and you didn’t isolate him like you would one of us. We’ll get some mundane mental health people in to diagnose and ultimately, deal with him in a humane manner. If that means that he gets locked away, at least he won’t get a chance to hurt anyone.”

The relief Rodney felt at that news was immense. He had gone though several Psych classes to get his doctorate in Sentinel Studies, but he had hated them. Medicine was such a soft, squishy, imprecise field that the whole thing had driven him bonkers. If there had been a way to get the degree without the medical side, Rodney would have jumped at it. As it was, he had to stay up to date in it to be an effective aid to John’s health. But there was no way he could handle Beau.

“Thanks,” Rodney said softly. “In other news, Timothy needs training. He is coming online slowly, and I got the impression that his Guide wasn’t here at this school.”

“So your baby Guide isn’t for him?” Claudia asked.

“Nope. She’s got a while yet before she is ready to take on a Sentinel,” Rodney said as he shook his head. Rubbing his hands over his face, he tilted his head back again. “Geeze. What a day. I am so glad that this mess is over.”

Laughing lightly, Claudia shook her head. “Me too. And you’re right. Hannah has a while. No rush.”

Rodney let his hands drop and pushed away from the table. “I need to talk to Hannah for a bit and then I am heading home. Call me if you need me to come in to pull him out of where I stuffed him?”

“I can do that,” the other Guide agreed. “Now shoo!”

Rodney shook his head at her and headed out. His bed was calling and he wanted to sleep for a week. If he was lucky, John would be there to curl up with him.

39 Comments:

  1. Always great to gain a glimpse of the young pair learning to find their path together.

  2. Statler and Waldorf! Bwahaha! The only two beings in any universe that can match Rodney’s snark levels. Thanks for a great read!

  3. So glad to see more of this! 😀

  4. This was a really good read. I enjoy this series and I love how strong Rodney is.

  5. Very good addition. Thanks.

  6. Awesome update…thanks so much!

  7. Yay for another chapter! Very nice addition to this universe. I love Rodney having to learn how to deal with people and with teenagers, something completely foreign to him. I also love how John and Rodney are completely wrapped around each other. I’m also glad Beau won’t have a chance to hurt anyone. I hope Rodney’s baby guide will be okay and that Timothy finds his guide.

    • They will be. That is one reason for places like the Center to exist. It helps the members who need a hand in finding their other half. But not in the same way that Rodney & John found each other.

      ~L

  8. You know, I’ve always enjoyed this series. I just love getting a glimpse of young John and Rodney. This chapter was the best by far! It has such depth and power. John and Rodney are maturing, their bond is growing, they are learning how to be leaders of their future pride. I love it! Of course I can’t help enjoying it when the bad guys get smacked down either! (Go Hannah!) This is some really fine work, hon. My compliments.

    • Hannah is gonna come out of that shell of hers and be hell on wheels. Just a quiet hell on wheels. The type that you don’t notice until you feel your knees getting cut off. Give her a few years.

      ~L

  9. I really need to stop checking on things when I’m getting ready to go to bed. I check and here was this lovely, lovely story just begging to be read. 😉 I like how the harassment was shown from both sides. While I was not surprised at guides being harassed, I was surprised that someone would harass a sentinel. Death wish maybe?

    • He wanted Rodney & didn’t bother to pay attention to anything anyone tried to teach him on what a *bad* idea it was. The humiliation will last for a long time & the chances of him touching another Guide are about nil.

      So is his career. If he makes it to full Lieutenant it will be a miracle. Really.

      ~L

  10. Two of my favourite shows and you’ve created a universe that has joined them together in such a fantasic way! Both Sentinel and Guide are growing into a pair of young men that will surely rock the world in the future!
    Thank you for sharing this universe with me/us…

  11. Greywolf the Wanderer

    freaking *awesome*!! am muhly enjoying this world and series, kudos!!

  12. Such a wonderful story. Glad to see how things are progressing for our heroes. Love the insight into how society sees the S/G pairs.

  13. Interesting, i like the way how Rodney handles those interviews, poor baby he’s a mess at the end. Loved to see John being suck a badass.
    Great part.

  14. Excellent story, as usual! It was great to see Rodney stick up for Hannah, especially since we seldom think of him as good with kids. I absolutely love it when I read Rodney ripping someone to shreds. That never gets old – not sure what that says about me! Thanks for a great read!

    • The thing is, he isn’t good with *kids*. But he is decent with young adults and anyone who wants to learn from him. As he is finding out thanks to Dr. Sandburg being pushy.

      And you are welcome. I am glad that you liked it!

      ~L

  15. I can’t wait for the next part!

  16. Wow! This is awesome. I’m so glad that you share your writing with us.

  17. great chapter, really loved it

  18. Really love this universe your created! Looking forward to more!

  19. Brenda ten Brinck

    I loved this.
    Especially how Rodney deals with al things a Guide does for his Sentinel.
    Loved a young Rodney and John.
    Really really hot steamy sexscenes.
    And yet they seem so intimite it almost made me feel like a voyeur 🙂
    Thank you so much for sharing this story.

    Brenda

  20. A fantastic series! I read the first two installments when they first came out. I wanted to reread them and found that you had several new posts! What a happy surprise! They were great! I hope you decide to continue with the series. Happy writing!

  21. I’m really enjoying reading through all your stories today! If you ever decide to continue with this story I will be waiting eagerly! Thank you for sharing your vision with us 🙂

  22. Pingback: In the Fullness of Time | Ladyholder's Blog

  23. Oh yeah, growing up sucks. I loved the peek into S/G society. This is a wonderful series, the blend of the two shows is perfect. Thank you!

  24. I’m really enjoying this series, but I think this was the first piece that I actually decided to post a comment on. I always am particularly enthusiastic about creeps getting taken down!
    At least this time I had the sense to click through to the page for the series, and start reading in the proper order.

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