[identity profile] http://users.livejournal.com/_beetle_/ posting in [community profile] neroayelslash
Didn't know this comm existed until I stumbled across [livejournal.com profile] fluffysparkle's journal and she kindly pointed me hence.

It feels so good not to be alone in slashing Nero/Ayel :D

Want, Need, And. . . .
Author: [livejournal.com profile] _beetle_
Fandom: ST:XI (film canon only)
Pairing Nero/Ayel
Rating: Hard R
Wordcount: 800
Disclaimer: Why, I barely know her! Seriously, though, just borrowing the hotness and making no profit.
Notes: Set post wormhole and during the movie.
Summary: Nero's thoughts on Ayel. Originally written for a [livejournal.com profile] slashthedrabble prompt, opposite. A drabble, droubble and ficlet.




I


Since the wormhole, and the commander's . . . accident . . . the young Lieutenant's been the perfect Second.


He's a capable, calmly amoral man; a dangerous cur kept docile by fear of and loyalty to a stronger, more cunning master.


In a life that longer exists, Nero would not have trusted Ayel near his wife, his child, or his Bridge. Principled fool that he was, he would've despaired over commanding a man with burgeoning atrocities in his eyes and smile, and incipient horrors in his heart. . . .


In this life . . . there's no one better suited to serving under Nero.


II


Nero once took joy from lovely things, but no more. For him, the universe has been emptied of lovely things.


Ayel, whatever he might once have been before the supernova, is the epitome of unlovely.


His face isn't heart-shaped, his eyes don't laugh. His thin, sneering lips aren't supple--aren't the dusky pink of desert roses. His smiles are strained, brittle grimaces: a mockery of satisfaction, and easily the unloveliest thing about this unlovely man.


His voice doesn't lilt gently, coquettishly . . . it's as low and underused a croak as that of any other crew-member, after years of dank, recycled air.


His skin isn't soft and fragrant. Also like any other crew-member, Ayel carries an intensely copperish-tang, is branded with the hot, metal-grease stink of hull repairs and constant work on the massive warp drive. Is always clammy, and pale from lack of sun.


He's a typical, two-dimensional villain who isn't quite real--doesn't come into focus until Nero's pinned his narrow hips--is trapped tight by long thighs while Ayel smirks up at him. Eggs him on with sneers and whispered filth.


Not a lovely man, no, nor good. Never will be.


But he's exactly the man Nero needs.


III


Sustaining rage strangely absent, Nero leaves the interrogation of Pike to Ayel.


While the breaking of honorable men whose only crime is loyalty doesn't turn Nero's stomach--at this late-early date, nothing does, nor ever will again--he has no taste for the prolonged witnessing of such expediencies.


Ayel is another story.


Ayel is not a good man. Nor has he ever been, Nero's long suspected. Like a rabid animal, Ayel needs only a direction in which to loose the demons he nurtures. Demons that existed long before Romulus ceased to.


And Nero isn't--has never been one to let former sensibilities (as useless as his dead heart) stop him from doing what's necessary. Even if it means leaving behind a smoking wreckage.


But unlike Ayel, he takes no satisfaction from destroying someone as unfortunately duty-bound as Captain Pike.


Once in his quarters, despite the pervasive chill and damp of the Narada, Nero shrugs out of his greatcoat. Lays down and stares up at the ceiling. He used to see her up there. See the family and world that's lost to him. Now . . . he sees only panels and grates, so he closes his eyes.


Were Pike Romulan, Nero reflects with some irony, they might have been comrades. In his quietly formidable way, the Captain has drawn both Nero's curiosity and his respect. Something that's surely not lost on Ayel, or the others. Pike will suffer, yes, but no more than is necessary. Not a whit past the codes they need, or heads will roll. Possibly even Ayel's, though the idea of sanctioning his Second after so long is . . . problematic, for many reasons--


His door whoosts open and shut, followed by the familiar sound of another greatcoat hitting the floor. Of clunking boots approaching his bed. Nero knows what he'll see should he open his eyes: his Second, stripping quickly, efficiently . . . ghostly in the faint lighting.


“Pike's condition?”


“Stable. As commanded. Sir.” There's a sneer in that sir. Not insubordinate--insubordination from Ayel, should it ever occur, will be in the form of a knife to the throat--but frustrated.


Frustration that Nero doesn't understand, and doesn't care to. He and Ayel are not confidants, nor is it essential that they be.


“We also got the codes.”


Nero smiles. Opens his eyes as Ayel straddles his hips: a grimacing, hypnotic pallet of pale skin and starkly shadowed hollows that's strung tighter than a Tholian lyre. He's hard, as always after interrogations, but unusually grim. “Thank you, Commander.”


Sparing a last thought for Pike--for Christopher, Nero wonders what it would be like to simply sit and talk with the man. . . .


But he can't quite imagine that. Not when shortly, Romulus will finally be safe. When Pike and everything he stood for will be dust.


There's no room or time for regret, only relief.


Soon, Nero thinks, as spidery, clever, musician's fingers make quick work of shirt and trousers. Quick work of flaccid flesh and wandering mind. Soon, it will all be over, and then. . . .

*

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