Entanglements: Sequel to Gardening Tips

BY : Lursa_and_BeTor
Category: 1 through F > Andromeda
Dragon prints: 4483
Disclaimer: I do not own Andromeda, nor any of the characters from it. I do not make any money from the writing of this story.


Telemachus Rhade nods at Beka Valentine as he makes his way to the command deck. She strides down the corridor next to him. Pale skin peeks through the artful slashes cut in her black pants. Her red knit shirt clings to her curves and bares her middle. A quick sidelong glance tells him that she noticed his looking and is pleased by it.

She is an excellent pilot and a skillful con artist. Too bad those skills are overshadowed by her personal weaknesses. Rhade sniffs. Dylan’s scent is on her. Good. Between his relationship with Beka and Dylan’s ambivalence toward his ancestor, the Captain is unlikely to make advances to him. Beka, however, seems inclined to make advances to him and Dylan doesn’t seem inclined to object. Does the Captain think to control him through her? Are her advances a test of some kind? Is she doing it on her own or has Dylan asked her to try to fuck him or is it both?

“Good Morning, Beka.” Telemachus smiles and slows his stride to match Beka’s.

“Good Morning.” Beka moves closer and manages to brush lightly against him. She smiles at him. “Got anything planned for when you get off duty?”

“No.” Telemachus glances at her. What is she going to suggest this time? “Why?”

“I was just wondering if you’d like to meet in the gym and work out for a bit.”

Rhade sighs. He has to exercise sometime. He could efficiently accomplish two things at once; get his workout in and ingratiate himself with Beka. “I’ll consider it. Thank you for the invitation.”

Beka smiles widely as they step through the door to Command Deck. “Good.”

“Good Morning, Captain.” Telemachus takes his station. He glances quickly over the readings displayed on the console.

Dylan glances over at the Nietzschean and then Beka. “Rhade. Beka.”

Telemachus looks around. The young officers from Terazed man the other stations. They shift uneasily as he looks at them. Word of Tri-Lorn’s arrest of him and Dylan’s subsequent rescue has spread. To judge from the covert looks they are uncertain whether Dylan was right to free him from Tri-Lorn’s custody or if Tri-Lorn’s accusation that he allowed the Progenitor to escape are true. Then there is the little matter of his real rank and apparent rank. Many of these young officers are aware that he was an Admiral. They have to be wondering wis gis going on and sufficiently intelligent to be wary of him.

Rhade turns his attention back to the console as the Captain begins roaming the room, peering over shoulders and pausing for the occasional word of praise or correction. He looks up, questioning as Dylan stops behind him. The Captain smiles and sets a hand on his shoulder. “Telemachus. Good to have you back on the Command Deck. How about a game of basketball later?”

“I would like that, Captain.” Rhade smiles. He raises an eyebrow at the slow, stroke of Hunt’s thumb along his shoulder. Perhaps he should adjust his pheromones levels lower. After a moment Hunt moves away and leaves the Command Deck.

His boneblades flutter briefly as his thoughts turn to the Second Consort. He is curiously eager to see the human again. Their encounter had been brief but pleasant. Perhaps next time, the Consort will be more relaxed and willing to spend more time on him and with him.

&&&

Harper stalks across the wide expansive lawn, trying to ignore Rhade trailing warily behind him. He scowls at the neat stretch of green grass, the big gaudy mansion planted in the center of the clearing. This Collector guy obviously wasn’t hurting for anything. Harper eyes the big, gold dome with disbelief. What is Tyr doing here with this rich loser?

He glances over his shoulder, accidentally meeting Rhade’s dark eyes. His gaze skims past Rhade to the Nietzschean guard. The guard’s attention was on Rhade. Good. Harper jerks stiffly around to continue following the guard herding him across the lawn. The lean blond had been oddly considerate, never hurrying him and apparently content to allow him to pause and look about as much as he wanted. No shoving. No pushing. No hitting. Not even a few insults. Odd.

Must be part of this Second Consort business and because Tyr is here somewhere. Harper looks eagerly around. His eyebrows rise as a gaggle of barely dressed dancing girls drift across the lawn. His eyes narrow with temper then he notices that the girls are all humans. They must belong to the Collector guy since Tyr would hardly want a flock of addicted dancing girls chasing him around the universe. What was the name? Oh, yeah. Pish. Harper snorts. The herd of dancing girls kinda goes with the sort of guy who would build a mansion like that. Probably had animal print sheets on every bed and gold plated fixtures in every bathroom.

He can almost feel Rhade’s watchful stare. He has to reluctantly admit that he is feeling better, more like himself since…color heats his face at the memory of discovering Rhade with pants undone lying beside him...the memory of Rhade’s cock filling his mouth. The Nietzschean seemed matter-of-fact about the whole thing but he felt mortified. To make matters worse the the underlying knowledge that he would have to do it again at some point. But not today, maybe not for a while now that Tyr is back.

They are heading toward a pair of gauzy tents pitched in front of the big house. The tents rather add to the surreal circus atmosphere. Harper glimpses a big, dark form through the drifting curtains and hurries into the tent. “Tyr!”

Tyr looks up. His beautiful hair is cropped short. A brown leather vest hugs his chest. A very young dancing girl is kneeling between his leather-covered thighs. He casually drops a grape into her mouth and murmurs, “Go.”

She smiles at him and rises in a graceful, flowing movement. Her sheer, dark cherry dress drifts around her dainty frame as she turns and glides out of the tent. Harper stares after her and then looks back at Tyr. He hardly knows what to ask first. What’s with the dancing girl? Why did Tyr send a message to Beka but not a word to him? What the hell is going on?

“You want to tell me…” Harper squeaks at Tyr pulls him into a too-tight embrace and kisses him hard, muffling the rest of the sentence. There is the immediate joy of being back in Tyr’s arms then the realization that something is odd. This isn’t right. It feels wrong. Tyr feels…wrong. The painfully tight embrace, the hard press of lips, the almost mechanical thrust of tongue…Tyr would never handle him that way. Harper wiggles in protest; his hands griping the wide shoulders. The skin feels wrong…smooth but lacking the rich, plush texture of Tyr’s skin. The taste is wrong. The way this…whatever it is…is touching him wrong. All wrong. Harper yanks his head back, his heart beating hard with fear and anger.

The thing nuzzles his throat, whispering softly, “Calm your fear, Harper, I will not hurt you. No one here is going to hurt you.”

“Put me down.” Harper squirms determinedly in the hard grip.

“Have you finished that project that I left you?” The fake Tyr whispers.

Harper stiffens and turns his head away as the lips slioftloftly across his cheek, heading for his mouth again. Tyr had left a pile of flexis filled with calculations and blueprints. He had found them under his pillows. The plans were for a device is like nothing that he has seen before. The closest things to it are that tesseract device that Satrina had used and the machine that he had later built based on that technology but the plans that Tyr left…those promised to be far more powerful and controlled. How does this fake Tyr know about that? Whose interest does it represent? “I said, put me down.”

“Not just yet, Harper. Not until you listen.” Tyr drops back in his chair, cradling Harper on his lap. He nuzzles the human’s throat and shoulder.

“Let go of me.” Harper glances around. He can see the Nietzschean guards through the gauzy flutter of the tent. Their backs are turned but he has no doubt that they are listening. Rhade is standing in the far corner of the tent, watching with a sardonic glint in his dark eyes. The lean blond guard is at the other corner of the tent watching all three of them. They seem to be waiting for some reaction on his part.

Wait. Wait. The pheromone thing…this fake Tyr wouldn’t smell right to any of the Nietzscheans so why are they going along with it? For that matter, why a fake Tyr? Damn it! Tyr is so going to pay for this when he catches up with the bastard. Harper presses back against the hard arms circling him and glares at the blond guard. “Where’s the off switch on this damned thing?”

Rhade walks over him and smiles knowingly. “Shhh. Not everyone knows.”

“You know. All the Niets know. I know.” Harper snorts despite the angry burn of his disappointment at discovering that Tyr is not really there. He shifts uncomfortably. Damned if the fake isn’t anatomically correct and sporting an erection. Did it have to do that?

“Clever, Harper. I’m so proud of you.” The fake Tyr smiles down at him.

He scowls back at it. How much intelligence does it have? It doesn’t seem to have Rommie’s level of self-awareness. Harper stares into the glassy eyes. “Who are…what are you?”

“I am a simulacrum of Tyr Anasazi.” The fake Tyr pulls Harper closer and strokes his back.

“You’re not an android.” Harper looks the fake Tyr over. The thing’s resemblance to Tyr is positively creepy. “If you were I would know it. You’re not. What are you?”

“I am more than machine, less than man, much less than Nietzschean.”

“Thanks for clearing that up for me.” Harper rolls his eyes. Yep. It had been build by Niets alright. “How about clearing something else up for me. Where is Tyr…my Tyr?”

“He asked that I give you this.” The fake Tyr places a small orb on the table next to his chair.

“I will leave you to your message, Second Consort.” Rhade bows and steps back.

“Wait.” The fake Tyr orders. It strokes Harper’s cheek as it looks at Rhade. “The message is for your ears as well Telemachus Rhade. Stay.”

Rhade glances at Harper and asks softly, “Would you like me to remain, Second Consort?”

Harper perches stiffly on the faux Tyr’s knees. He wishes it would let him up. He thought that he had experienced some embarrassing moments in his life but getting publicly groped by this thing is worse the vague memories of putting his mouth on Rhade. He does not feel comfortable with this thing even if it is from Tyr. Of course, he could say the same about Rhade. Harper looks up, meeting Rhade’s black eyes. “Yeah. Actually I would.”

“As you wish.”

Harper looks from the orb to the fake Tyr. What is it waiting for? He wants to see Tyr again. The real Tyr. Even if only for a few minutes of message. “What are you waiting for? Turn it on.”

“The device will only respond to you, Harper. Your DNA activates it.” The fake Tyr leans back in the chair, watching Harper.

“So what do I do?” Harper asks in exasperated tones. “Spit on it? Pee on it?”

The blond guard snorts. Rhade’s dark eyes glint with amusement.

“Nothing so dramatic. Touch it.” The fake Tyr pats his shoulder.

Harper reaches out hesitantly and touches the orb. A small holographic image of Tyr appears. He leans close, peering at the image. The long, beautiful braids are really gone. Tyr looks just as handsome with the short hair but he’ll miss wrapping his hands in the long braids. Tyr looks good. Healthy and well. Where is his lover? When will he see Tyr again?

“Harper. I don’t have a large window of opportunity so I must be brief. This simulacrum is my representative…a probe if you will…so I may gage the strength of my enemy.”

“What enemy?” Harper asks tartly. Which enemy might be a better question? One of Tyr’s enemies or one of the Progenitor’s enemies? Or someone who qualifies as both?

The tiny figure folds his arms over his chest. “We met him over two years ago. You call him the living lava lamp.”

Harper frowns. He doesn’t like to remember his own run-ins with the lava lamp and its assorted minions. His hand touches his dataport. If Tyr is taking on the Magog and their god…his mouth hardens. If this will get rid of the Magog threat for good, he will back Tyr’s plan all the way and endure whatever he must until he can have Tyr again. “Ole Red Eyes himself.”

“Indeed.”

Details would be helpful. Such as how those tesseract plans that Tyr left him fit in with the whole of Tyr’s battle plan. Harper leans closer. “What has all this got to do with him…it…whatever?”

“I can reveal no more at this time.”

Great. That’s just peachy. Very helpful. Harper sighs and peers at the tiny Tyr standing on the table. “Are you okay?”

“I am well. You look ill.”

Harper sits back and scowls. He knows what he looks like. He has a mirror and while he’s on the subject just whose fault is it that he isn’t getting what he needs? Huh? Tell me that, Big Guy. “Gee thanks.”

“Rhade.” Tyr looks across the table at Rhade.

Rhade takes a step closer, watching the tiny figure with equal parts fascination and wariness. “Yes, Progenitor.”

Tyr’s image frowns. “Have you been comforting my consort?”

Rhade glances sidelong at Harper and mutters, “I am trying…”

“Harper.” Tyr turns a stern look on Harper.

Harper glares at the small image. Does he have to discuss this in front of Rhade and the guards? They’ve had this discussion before. He only wants Tyr. He isn’t a casual encounter kind of guy. “I don’t want him, Tyr!”

“I am not eager to think of you with him, love. Necessity requires it for your sake.” There is a stern expression on the tiny, dark face.

Harper looks away. No one will ever feel completely right to him but Tyr. “He doesn’t feel right.”

“It pleases me that you take no joy in the acts. However, you must use your comforter or risk all.”

“What do you mean?” Harper asks, turning back to the image.

“I need you to complete the project. I need you whole wel well when I return.” Tyr’s expression softens as he looks at Harper.

“When are you coming back?”

“When we have vanquished this foe and emerge victorious.”

Harper frowns. That sounds like he may be apart from Tyr for a long time. Like he might have to be with Rhade for longer than he wants to consider. “What about this fake Tyr? What am I supposed to do with it?”

“Its purpose will be revealed soon. You will know what to do when the time comes.”

Great. Another non-answer. He’d been working on the new tesseract device more out of curiosity and a desire to keep busy than anything else but knowing that it was something that could help stop the Magog, that added a sudden urgency to his tinkering. “I’ll get to work as soon as we get back.”

Tyr looks from Rhade to Harper and his lips tighten but his gaze meets Harper’s. “Move Rhade into our quarters.”

“NO!” Harper stiffens in pure fury. How can Tyr ask that of him? He couldn’t bear to go there after Tyr left so he had returned to his old quarters. Rhade had taken Tyr’s rooms when the Nietzschean arrived. No way is he going to…the mere idea of having to allow Rhade to be intimate with him is hard enough…the idea of being intimate with Rhade in that room, that bed…No. Absolutely not. Definitely not.

“He must remain in close proximity to you. Remember, Seamus. He is yours to control. You may use him as you will.”

Harper glances across the tent at the sound of a hastily muffled snigger. The blond guard is grinning and Rhade looks stunned. This does not make him feel any more reconciled to the idea of being intimate with someone who was not Tyr or any less angry at being urged to touch Rhade, to allow Rhade to touch him. Tyr had already told him that he could do as he would with Rhade; that he would be in control of whatever happened. It might not be a bad idea to be sure that Rhade was clear on that. “So I can do him. He doesn’t have to do me, right?”

“That is correct.” Tyr nods “Pr “Progenitor!” Rhade gasps. His black eyes are wide and shocked.

“Silence. You will yield to my consort.” Tyr’s face is cold and hard as he stares at Rhade. “You will assist him in any way he requires of you is that clear?”

Rhade bows his head. Hot color washes over his face. “Yes, Progenitor.”

“Good. Harper. My time grows short.”

Harper stands, ignoring the way the fake Tyr’s hands slide over his waist and hips. He stares down at the tiny Tyr standing on the table. It’s been so long since he has seen Tyr; been with his lover. “Don’t go…not yet.”

“I must. Stay strong. Complete the project. All will work according to plan.” Tyr image flickers and vanishes.

Harper sweeps the room with a glare. The fake Tyr is leaning back in its chair; it’s face blank and indifferent. The blond guard is eyeing Rhade with speculation and amusement. Rhade is standing stiffly; his black eyes blank and dazed.

“Come on Rhade. Let’s get out of here. I think I’m going to be sick.” Harper stalks out of the tent. Had the other guards heard any of that? Yeah. The sudden ripple of interested looks at him and Rhade answer that question. Great. Why don’t they just make a recording and stick it in the All Systems University Library database?

Harper strides across the lawn, through the wandering herd of dancing girls. Rhade is walking beside him. Harper glances over his shoulder. The fake Tyr is watching from the tent. The blond guard and his dark partner are strolling along behind them.

“Did you see the look on Rhade’s face?” The blond guard’s voice is pitched to carry as he addresses his partner.

The dark guard snickers. “I did. Comforting the Second Consort is one thing. But allowing it to top…well, Rhade doesn’t look too eager to play ‘bottom’ to a kludge ‘top’.”

He is in a mood to sink his boneblades into something right…like two overly bold Betas. The Second Consort’s announcing a lack of desire for him is bad enough but added to the Progenitor’s equally public announcement that he must allow the human to take him…no wonder the Betas guards doubt his Alpha status enough to taunt him…Rhade growls and turns sharply to face the two guards, his boneblades snapping out. The dark guard immediately steps back and falls silent. The blond also falls silent but holds his ground and smirks. The smirk fades as Rhade steps toward him.

Rhade pivots at the sound of approaching footsteps. Three people. A quick glance reveals that the two Betas aren’t reacting. Rhade sniffs. The breeze brings him the scent of Beka and two strangers. She must have been sent for after Harper left the tent.

Beka walks around the path curving through the trees. Two guards flank her. She strokes her collar and smiles at Harper. “Harper. How did it go?”

“How did what go?” The Second Consort’s voice is decidedly snappish.

Beka frowns, pausing as she comes even with Harper. “Your meeting with Tyr, what else?”
“Pretty much exactly the way I expected,” Harper shrugs. His lips thin with pain and anger as he stares off into the trees.

Rhade studies the Second Consort thoughtfully. This could be his opportunity despite the embarrassment of being ordered to allow a human to top him. He has already noted Harper’s loyalty to and affection for those that the human values. Harper’s anger at the Progenitor might well give him an opening to attach some of that loyalty and affection to himself. And give him the opportunity to show the Second Consort how much pleasure he could provide if given the chance.

“Well, that’s a good thing, isn’t it?” Beka asks cheerfully.

Harper glances back at the tent where the fake Tyr is back to feeding one of dancing girls. “I suppose so.”

“Rhade,” Beka smiles and sweeps her gaze approving over him, lingering casually over the bulge filling his snug, black pants. “Good to see you.”

“Beka.” Rhade uses a cool, distancing tone. He moves to stand closer to Harper. Probably too soon to touch the human but he can begin to ease the way by adding seductive overtones to his pheromones. If the human does not do something with him soon, the Progenitor might begin to doubt the choice and replace him. He will not have that added humiliation. He can only imagine the glee with which his enemies would greet the news.

Beka lifts her eyebrows at his tone and glances at Harper. She tilts her head in Rhade’s direction. “What’s with him?”

Harper glances over his shoulder. His lips curve into a smug, taunting smile. “He received a bit of disturbing news.”

“Oh.” Beka eyes them curiously. She looks toward the tent. “Well, guess I’d better see what Tyr has to say.”

“Yeah. Go ahead.” Harper turns away. He suddenly turns back to her and calls, “Oh, and, Beka, take your time. Rhade and I have a few things to discuss.”

“Sure. No problem.” Beka glances over her shoulder at them.

Harper eyes the tents on the lawn and the dancing girls coldly. “Maybe Tyr will let you stay in one of his circus tents.”

“Really? You think he might?” Beka gives him a quizzical look.

“Never hurts to ask, Beka.”

Harper turns to Rhade. The blue eyes are cool and angry still. “Let’s get back to the Maru. I may need a little ‘comforting’ before Beka returns.”

So this it. His opportunity to offer pleasure to the Second Consort and prove his worth in that area. He is not pleased, not at all, with the idea of permitting a human to…but it is the Progenitor’s order and if riding him occasionally is what it takes to make the Second Consort accept him…then he will tolerate it. Rhade lowers his eyes under the human’s gloweignaignaling his acceptance of the required submission. “As you wish, Harper.”

“Yes. Exactly as I wish.” Harper snaps as he stalks off. “Although I’m undecided.”

“About what, Harper?” Rhade asks as he falls in next to the human. Does he really want to know with the Second Consort in this mood? At least, the Betas are wary enough of his own mood to have dropped back, out of hearing distance of their conversation.

Harper adopts a thoughtful air and slants him a mocking glance. “I’m not sure if I want to take your ass with you on your back or on your knees.”

“Whatever you prefer, Harper,” Rhade murmurs mildly, refusing to be pushed into angry reaction. He can scent fear under the human’s mingled anger and desire. He must not scare the Consort off with a display of the real anger smoldering under the surface of meekness that he is offering now. Once they are intimate, he is confident of his ability to keep and hold the human’s interest.

Rhade eyes the human in sudden speculation. Perhaps the Consort hopes to provoke his anger. Perhaps there is more that one reason for the human’s public demands. A need to establish control and dominance over him…that would be explained by Harper’s past and the human’s fear of him but he is being to suspect that the human is hoping that he will refuse the embarrassing orders and give the Second Consort yet another excuse to avoid contact with him as long as possible.

“On your knees then.” Harper flicks a quick, sidelong look at him as if assessing his reaction.

TBC


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