Disclaimer: They belong to someone else, they should belong to me, I let them have lots of fun.
Special Thanks: to Jesse and Sihn for encouragement.
"Excuse me?" was Ezra's shocked reply.
"No Way!" was Vin's.
Chris Larabee, leader of the region's best ATF team, smiled in grand fashion. "Yup." He looked down at the planned itinerary, "First Berlin, then Amsterdam. Should prove to be an interesting assignment." Chris couldn't help smiling at the expression on his agents faces.
Buck laughed out loud as he repeated Chris' bombshell, "Male models. What a hoot." He laughed even harder at Standish's grimace.
"But why?" the undercover agent almost whined.
"Travis picked the two of you. Said you both had the right look." Chris was working hard at containing his own laugh.
"Bullshit. I ain't doing it!" Vin had his arms crossed tightly with a 'don't fuck with me' look.
Chris sighed and became more serious. "Travis has received credible information that the 'That International Look' model agency is just a front for running weapons. Interpol and Scotland Yard agents are too well known and they have appealed to the FBI. While the issue was on the table some mindless twit mentioned our reputations and that as they say is that. Travis volunteered the two of you, as you have the look the agency uses." The ATF leader paused as he looked right at Vin and Ezra, "This group reportedly sells a billion dollars of weapons a year. If we can have a hand in stopping this, we should. Buck will be racing in each of the cities you visit, he'll be your contact. The rest of us will work this end, the model agency's last gig coincides with the international gun show held in Denver." Chris looked at the two men, and saw what he needed to see, resigned compliance.
"Hot dog, I get to race," Buck couldn't contain his glee.
"Don't forget why you're there," Larabee reminded his oldest friend, giving him the Larabee stare.
"When do we leave?" Ezra asked, poker face in place.
"Day after tomorrow. Two days before your interview with Jacques Delieu." Chris looked down at his notes. "JD, find out everything you can on Delieu, and his personnel. Josiah and I will go 'militant' for the gun show and will set up our own display. Nathan, I called in a favor and you'll be the permits manager. That way you can ask questions without raising suspicion. JD, you'll be handling all communication. Set up regular check-ins with all of us and it's imperative that we all adhere to it. JD will be the only one in communication with all of us and he will determine if someone is in trouble. Meet here tonight, six o'clock." With that he dismissed them, he called out, "Vin, Ezra." The two agents held back.
As the other four left the office, Chris looked at the two agents that were going undercover. "Even though this sounds like fluff, it isn't. This could get very dangerous, watch your backs." He paused, "You'll both need a wardrobe for this. Ezra, get the finest for the both of you. Wardrobe for two weeks minimum, dress to casual. Top to bottom, we can't let the little things trip us up." He handed Standish the agency American Express Gold card.
Ezra's eyebrows raised at the carte blanch look from Larabee. "Price is no object?" He really wanted the point clear.
Chris smiled, "It came from upstairs, price is no object."
Ezra smiled a real smile as he said to Vin, "Well, Mr. Tanner let's go have some real fun."
Vin rolled his eyes, "Shopping for clothes is not fun."
"Ah, today, they will treat you like a king." Ezra smiled enigmatically as he touched an imaginary hat brim.
+ + + + + + +
Ezra took Vin to the store he used regularly. He let the proprietor, Steven Stein, know that the alterations would need to be completed by the following evening. The look of horror on the man's face was replaced by a smile as Ezra waved the gold card in the air. His staff would be compensated for staying up all night to finish.
Steven knew Ezra's measurements, but had his staff work on Vin immediately. Vin stood uncomfortably as three men measured just about every part of his body.
"Mr. Stein, we need a full wardrobe, can we select what we want?" Ezra asked of the man. Vin didn't understand the question as he figured that of course they would choose what they would be buying.
Mr. Stein nodded, "Ten minutes."
The room cleared out just as a young woman came up to them, "Coffee gentlemen?"
Ezra nodded, Vin said, "Yes. Very strong." The woman smiled as she too left them alone. Vin looked quizzically at Ezra.
"Here, take a seat and then we will pick and choose what we wish to try on." Ezra indicated two seat behind them. Their coffee already making an appearance.
Over the next several hours, the two of them saw evening wear to underwear. Ezra enjoyed seeing Vin try on the different outfits and found himself very much admiring how well Vin fit his trousers. He surprised himself. He had always thought that Vin was easy to look at, but his thoughts presently were quite a bit more.
Vin and Ezra teased each other on what looked good and average. Both picked out selections for the other. Vin was surprised at how much fun he was having. On his fifth cup of coffee, Vin said, "Ez, this isn't a bad way to spend a day." His eyes clearly mischievous.
"Especially when somebody else is footing the bill." Ezra felt a strange gripping feeling in his chest as Vin smiled a no holds barred smile at him. 'Lordy,' he thought to himself, 'I find Vin very attractive.' The moment was lost as yet another set of selections was paraded in front of them. By six o'clock they had everything selected, measured and purchased. It would be altered and packed, awaiting them tomorrow evening. Ezra thanked the proprietor profusely as they took their leave. They rushed back to the ATF building for their meeting.
+ + + + + + +
"One day with Ezra, and Vin is already picking up he's bad habits." Buck chuckled as the two agents walked in late.
"We only just finished selecting our wardrobe. We've had a grueling day." Ezra's facial expression gave nothing away as usual.
Vin smiled another enigmatic grin and confirmed Ezra's statement. "Damm hard work."
Chris looked at both agents and shook his head. He turned to JD, "Okay, JD what did you get?"
JD filled them in on the suspected gun deals that Delieu's agency was responsible for. Where the tracing of the goods stopped and how he managed to prevent himself from being caught. "They believe the exchange is done by the models. Although they be unaware of their complicity. A key is passed both ways, Interpol believes that the keys are for safety deposit boxes." JD had spent the entire day on line doing research.
"Nice work, Kid," Buck told him sincerely. Chris nodded at the Kid.
Chris looked at Buck, " You leave tomorrow, Travis has had your passport cleared. Mika Hakkinen has a car for you, but remember why you're there." Chris smiled at Buck's expression of getting to play with all the toys.
+ + + + + + +
The following day Vin and Ezra spent their time in front of a camera. Learning the lingo, the moves and procedures. While also getting pictures for a portfolio.
Two bags of luggage each arrived, packed with their new clothes. Their ID's also arrived by messenger. Ezra Simmons and Vin Talbert.
Chris dropped them off at the airport and told them to be careful and to remember the check-ins. The plane boarded on time. A stop in New York, then on to Berlin, Germany.
Vin sat in the middle seat, next to Ezra and took in their classy clothes. He couldn't figure what all the fuss was for. He looked at Ezra reading and asked, "What's the big deal with dressing like this?"
Ezra pondered the question as he let the book drop in his lap, then turned to Vin as he answered, "People generally judge others in the first few minutes. Expensive clothes, educated man, that is the image they keep, they leave the man alone."
Vin asked cause he was curious, "Is that what you want, to be left alone?"
"I thought it was before, now, I don't think so. The team has changed my priorities. At times, it's a bit fearful." Ezra answered with unusual honesty.
The fear that had gripped Vin released, and he suddenly realized that the answer had mattered to him. Surprised at the intensity of this feeling, he asked, "Are you fightin that fear?"
"It's difficult to change the ways of a lifetime. One needs an exceptionally powerful incentive." Ezra shared, thinking of the man beside him. Trying to comes to terms with the startling personal revelations of the past couple of days. He looked at Vin, he wasn't comfortable sharing inner thoughts, most weren't really interested. But Vin was looking at him, as though the answers mattered.
Vin smiled because Ezra had shared something real with him. Then he grew thoughtful, "Any change is tough. Guess the one changing has to really want to, but it's still hard." Obviously thinking about his own life too.
Ezra smiled with his eyes at man next to him. Glad that he had trusted Vin enough to share. He closed his eyes as he laid his head back.
Vin was all set to smooth Ezra's hair back when he caught himself. 'What in the hell am I doing?' he asked himself. 'Why did I want to touch him.' Vin wasn't sure that he wanted the answers just now and closed his eyes too. Thinking.
They made the plane change in New York, where a briefcase was waiting for them with more updated information from JD. They slept most of the flight to Germany. After they made it through customs, they grabbed a cab and located their hotel. Ezra's German had a Southern accent, but the cabby understood him perfectly.
Vin grinned, "You never said you spoke German."
Ezra returned the same grin, "You never asked."
"Oh, so if I ask the question, you answer?" Vin asked mischievously.
"Never said that." Ezra answered with enigmatic overtones. Vin playfully hit Ezra on the shoulder as they entered the hotel.
After they were settled, Ezra wanted lunch. "Rabbit food, Ezra?" Vin asked.
"I'm sure we can find something we both will enjoy, Mr. Tanner." Ezra stopped at the concierge and asked for a restaurant that would please them both. Joining Vin outside, the Southerner said, "We can walk or hail a cab."
"Walk, you Ezra?" Vin kidded him.
"We're in Berlin, it's a way to see the sights, the culture. If you're not up to it, I understand." Innocent green eyes stared at blue eyes, hoping for the reaction he got.
"I'm up for whatever you can do." Vin grinned. The two men set off for the restaurant the concierge spoke of.
They both found food to satisfy them. Then they set off on a walking tour of downtown Berlin. In an art museum, Vin found himself tiring quickly of the odd art pieces. Ezra suggested they try one more area, so Vin followed his friend. As they passed through huge bronze doors, they came to the garden. Vin was entranced with the sight and smell of the outdoors. As far as he could see, a forest on one side, grasslands on the other. Flowers in all stages of blooms. He turned to Ezra and smiled to acknowledge his finding the great outdoors in a middle of a city.
They spent the next day sightseeing some more and ended at the racetrack to meet up with Buck that evening. Buck looked in his element as he donned his helmet and climbed in his car. The watched as he drove a decent time, enough to qualify.
The following morning was their meet with the head of 'That International Look', Jacques Delieu. Portfolios in hand the entered the office and sat in the chairs provided. Graceful, was the only word that could be used to describe how the two moved. The agency head was surprised at the contrasting beauty the men had together. He could already see the shots. He asked and received answers, he checked how the camera saw them, and was pleased at how their sex-appeal showed on the flat paper.
He talked with them all morning and then had a catered lunch brought in. He also brought in many beautiful women. Ezra looked appreciatively at the women as they paraded by. Jacques watched Vin and asked him, "Why Vin, you look downright uncomfortable."
Vin answered without missing a beat, "I just don't like it when my partner, that is bi, sees someone better looking than me." Vin looked directly at Jacque all during his reply. Then he turned to meet Ezra's glance.
The surprise that Ezra felt was not reflected in his features, he just smiled serenely at Vin. "It would be hard to match your beauty, lover."
Jacque Delieu smiled, "Ah, so that's how it is. I can accept that. Many of those that work for us have alternate live styles. I wish for you both to dine with me tonight. Seven o'clock. My limo will pick you up."
The two agreed and left shortly before two. They took a cab to the hotel and planned to call JD.
+ + + + + + +
As they were preparing for the evening, Ezra paused and asked seriously, "Vin you sure you want to handle it this way?" Ezra asked of Vin. "There will be certain behavior expected from us, you're aware?"
"Yes, Ez. I don't want a parade of girls brought before us each day. This way it would be accepted that we spend a lot of time in each other's company. Are you uncomfortable with this?" Vin asked, wondering why the hesitation on Ezra's part.
'If you only knew,' Ezra thought to himself. Aloud, he replied, "No, I am fine with this. I just don't want you to recoil when I put my arm around you." Ezra smiled at his partner.
Vin returned the smile, "I'm a professional. I can handle it." The thought assailed him that it would be nice to sit close to Ezra's soft body. Vin coughed and cleared his throat. "What should we wear?" Ezra picked out dark slacks and silk shirts. They would bring jackets in case they needed them.
They left to meet with Jacques at the restaurant. After dinner they went to a club. Ezra wasn't surprised to find themselves in a men's singles club. As the waiter brought their drinks, Jacques asked, "How'd you two meet?"
Ezra smiled at Vin as he answered, "At work."
Jacques grinned at Ezra's gaze, "When did you know?"
Again, Ezra answered, his gaze never wavering from Vin's eyes. "I looked into the cerulean pools and decided it would be an excellent way to drown."
Jacques turned his head to look at Vin. He held a happy, bemused look on his face at Ezra's words. "And you, Vin?"
"It was the first time he spoke, that Southern accent rippled up my spine and I was lost." Vin told him as he continued to meet Ezra's eyes.
Jacques was about to ask another question when the music changed and Ezra recognized what was coming. He said, "Excuse me Jacques, but I must have this dance with Vin." He held out his hand as the opening cords of a tango began. Vin smiled as he placed his hand in Ezra's.
Ezra led him to the floor and whispered in his ear, "Can you follow?"
Vin whispered back, "Yes, a good leader."
Ezra grinned wickedly as he said, "At the end of the dance, I will dip you back and then I will kiss you." At the slightly puzzled look on Vin's face Ezra continued, "We're in a gay club, it's what's expected of us."
Ezra put his hands on Vin's hips and guided him through the opening moves of a tango. Vin was preoccupied with the upcoming kiss, he never gave any thought to the dance and moved in time to every one of Ezra's moves. Ezra twirled him out and snapped him back. Vin's eyes never left Ezra's as Ezra repeated the turns and snaps of Vin's body. As Vin's body was pressed against Ezra's chest, the Southerner became aware of just how much he loved the feel of this man against his body. He was lost in the sensuous moves of the tango.
To all the onlookers in the club that had stopped dancing to watch the sensuous couple, these two worked a magic that only long time dance partners could achieve. They moved as one together, and with the music.
As the concluding strings of the music began, Ezra ran his hand up Vin's thigh, then around to his back and down to his cheeks. Grabbing one firmly, Ezra dipped Vin back, arching his back so that he was draped over his arm, hair touching the floor. The song ended and applause erupted from all the spectators in the club.
This was all lost on the two men. Ezra lifted Vin to an upright position and then brought his hand up to Vin's head and grasped a hand full of soft ash brown hair and brought him tightly against his body. The Southerner's lips descended slowly, allowing Vin to see the naked desire that was in the green pools, directed at him. Vin waited as the lips finally connected with his and the kiss took on a life of its own. They explored the caverns of each others mouths, tongues danced together as if they had done this before. The surroundings were lost to both men as they were completely caught up in the passion that flared between the two of them. It was only the need for air that separated the two, then they heard the applause that was still going as the onlookers too, felt the passion that the dancers shared.
Any last doubts that Jacques had about Ezra and Vin were erased at the tell tale bulges that were straining against their trousers, evident to all eyes. The two men stared at each other a full minute before making their way back to the table. As they sat down and pulled their chairs closer together, Ezra said lowly, "Thank you for the extraordinary dance."
"My pleasure." Vin said throatily. Desire still coursing through his body. 'The dance was so passionate. Was it the dance or Ezra.' Vin tried to sort his thoughts. He missed most of the conversation, so preoccupied was he.
As the limo took them back to their hotel, they sat close but said nothing. Ezra knew that he was completely infatuated with one Vin Tanner, but he believed that Vin was just playing a role. Ezra did not want to cross the line without being sure where Vin's feelings lie.
The undercover man noticed the limo driver looking back at them and so he rested his head on Vin's shoulder. Vin rested his head on the bent one and closed his eyes. Ezra watched as the limo driver smiled to himself and focused his eyes on the road once more.
Vin assumed that Ezra was playing a part. He saw the desire in his eyes at the end of the dance, but the dance was so damm passionate. He wasn't even sure what he was feeling. He stole a look at the cryptic man beside him. He gave nothing away.
They got to their doors and Ezra hesitated, looking at the blue eyes that showed so much confusion. He knew that now was not the time to pursue this. He smiled softly at deceptively gentle man. "Thank you for the dance." He entered his room and closed the door.
+ + + + + + +
The next four days was a whirlwind of activity, location shots, studio, posed and spontaneous. There wasn't time to eat, let alone ponder life's oddities. They didn't turn up any clues. They wouldn't know what was out of place. Another four days here, then it was on to Amsterdam. If they hadn't any leads, they would continue to Denmark. Buck had relayed that Chris felt that is was probably better if they were to stay with the assignment until it concluded in Denver. He gave them box seat tickets to the races, enough that they could share.
Jacques seem pleased when Ezra shared them and they all planned on going in the evening. That evening was the first time the agents saw a face from their files.
As they spent the entire evening with Delieu, they played the couple. They touched, held hands and a few times they would look at each other and share a kiss. Each time, the kiss was like its own entity. With no planned thought, their tongues would explore, suck and lavish the other, leaving both men breathless. Anyone watching would think they were lovers of long standing.
Vin remained confused, but Ezra was worried that he was falling hard for the long haired tracker, and he didn't know how to truly protect himself this time. Running away was not an option. He didn't think a relationship was either. He just soaked up each minute, being honest with each touch and caress.
That he spent each night in the shower jacking off to thoughts of Vin, was the price he paid, but each touch of Vin was worth the lonely ache at night. His dreams were of such an erotic nature that he'd have to take another shower in the morning, jacking off, just to take a leak. But Vin was such sweet torture, that all the discomfort was worth it. That in itself was a startling revelation. Discomfort and denial worth it because of another human being, a man at that. Ezra realized in a rush of emotions, that this was very serious for him. He truly hoped he could cope.
The last night in Berlin was the party blast thrown for the agency. The shoot was better than billed and the shots were some of the very best ever. Jacques was pleased at the sensuous quality of the duel shot of his two newest models. They should do well in Europe, were their relationship wouldn't interfere with their career. He now understood why they hadn't done much in the United States, they were such prudes there.
Delieu asked the band to play a rhumba, he figured that if they mastered the tango, the rhumba would be a cakewalk. He hadn't seen the rhumba done well in a long time. He walked over to the couple that had their hands entwined and whispered in Ezra's ear, "A rhumba is coming up, I'm hoping that you both will grace us." Though it sounded as an optional thing, both men knew it wasn't. Ezra smiled and nodded.
He whispered in Vin's ear, "Follow my lead, you'll do wonderful." For the onlookers, for himself, he pulled Vin's face close and kissed him, in a slow sensual way. Receiving several wolf whistles, the men broke apart.
The music started and Ezra took Vin by the hips and led him through the steps. Vin placed his hands on Ezra's shoulders and gave himself up to Ezra. The music was just a buzz in the background. He was mesmerized by bewitching green eyes, and a body so sensual that he was afraid that he would burst into flames. Ezra moved them about the floor, adding more and more to the dance. Never losing contact with his partner, he was the music. His passion flowed throughout his body and spilled over to Vin. As their body's brushed together, their erections grew unnoticed by the dancers, so lost in the magic they created together. As the music hit its crescendo and the final stands played, Ezra slid on his knees as Vin arched over his lap, eyes on each other the whole time.
The applause was deafening, the band themselves stood up and clapped at the display of dancing that could rival the greats. Jacque was more than pleased at the interpretation they had given.
Vin and Ezra still stood on the dance floor, eyes locked together, still lost in their own web of magic. Each afraid to break the spell. Ezra leaned forward and kissed his partner, rapture flooded his veins. Vin felt like his blood hummed.
The claps on the back drew the men to the here and now and then headed for the bar. Delieu approached them, "Thank you. That was fabulous. I won't forget it."
Under his breath, Ezra whispered, "Neither will I."
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