Slashababy 2004 Stories

  FANFICTION: This story depicts real-life public figures engaged in completely fictional, false and untrue activities. It never happened, it never will happen. This story is a work of fantasy and satire which in no way professes to express the truth about the life, thoughts, feelings, desires, opinions, beliefs, activities or sexual orientation of any person mentioned herein.


For broken_rook
by cesare

It's nothing he ever expected, but when Dom kisses him, it's the most romantic moment of Billy's life to date.

Romance isn't something he ever particularly expected for himself, and certainly not something he associates with Dom, who's a mate and a laugh and a brilliant partner in crime, but romantic? Never that, surely. Only...

They're standing on the patio of Orlando's house, looking out over the back garden. The air is sweet with night-dewed plants, and sticky-fragrant smoke from marijuana and Elijah's clove cigarettes drifting from inside.

The warm tumult of noise and music brims from the house and occasionally vibrates the glass of the yellow-lit window pane. Its gold square illuminates Dom's back, his shoulder blades and his spiky short hair, while his profile's lined in white-blue moonlight.

Billy's just squiffy enough to look over at him and think to himself that Dom is a bit like a line graph, or a backwards check-mark, in loads of ways. He can be moody, but no matter how stroppy he is, there's always that tick up at the end when he gets his perspective and makes peace with it all. Even his nose turns up at the end, even his eyelashes curl up, his hair sticks up, his good humor always comes back.

A good mate, Billy's best mate, really; and though Billy had loads of friends back home, now it seems a poor sort of life he led then, because there hadn't been a friend quite like Dom in it.

That's the exact thought in Billy's head when Dom turns to him and leans toward him-- almost sways toward him, as though it's not quite voluntary, as though gravity's somehow a bit stronger just where Billy's standing-- and kisses him.

It's a close, lingering kiss despite its brevity, and Billy's lips were already parted, pursed to take in the night air, they came out to get some air, it's smoky inside and his mouth is just a bit open already and it doesn't occur to him to shut it as Dom sways and kisses him and then Dom's mouth opens as well and his tongue is a gentle brush of heat that crosses Billy's suddenly sensitive lips and feathers against his own tongue, and that faintest wet touch makes it something a bit more than just a kiss-- it's no snog but it's not only a friendly smack on the mouth either.

Dom doesn't taste of beer or salt and vinegar crisps, though he should, as Billy knows Dom's had quite a bit of both in the past hour. Instead there's the faintest flavor of something spicy that Billy hasn't enough time to place in the moments between Dom swaying toward him and Dom's mouth lifting away from his.

Dom's eyes flick up and down Billy's face, and whatever he sees there prompts him to ask, "All right, mate?" though his slight smile never dwindles.

"All right, yeah," Billy says easily. He's surprised, there's no doubt about that; he's never really thought seriously about kissing a bloke before... but oddly it's completely all right. They go back to looking out over the garden, both sipping their beers. It's not til later that night, alone before sleeping, unable to think about anything but the kiss in an endless-seeming loop, that Billy realizes it was the most romantic moment of his life to date.


Dom sneezes for the fiftieth time, and Billy patiently hands him another tissue.

"Zhanks," Dom sniffles thickly. "Ab I fuggig ub by makeub?"

"Yeah," says Billy. "They've already called Darcy in to fix your face up before your next shot."

"Fugging blants," Dom mutters darkly, glaring around them at the glorious meadows of mingled grasses and wildflowers, swaying gently in the light breeze under a sunny blue sky. In the midst of so much verdant, fertile plant life, even Dom's inhaler is failing him.

"Seems a bit ironic really," Billy comments. "You liking nature so much, when your nose really doesn't seem very keen on it at all."

"Very fuddy."

"Are you sure you're really allergic?" asks Billy. "Maybe it's all in your head, eh? Psychosomatic."

Dom stares up at him in watery-eyed surprise.

"That's right. Something to think about, innit," says Billy sagely.

Blowing his nose mightily, Dom answers, "I'm just shocked you know what that word means."

"You see? You see? Took your mind off it a bit and look at you. You're already clearing up." Billy casts about, looking round til he finds a nearby clutch of white flowers that come up in a tidy handful. "Here, smell these, I bet you won't sneeze at all."

"You're mad and you're obviously trying to kill me. I'm only letting you cos I'm banking that there's no such thing as sinuses in the afterlife." Dom tilts his head as Billy brings the flowers near and inhales tentatively. Nothing happens.

"Told you," Billy says smugly, taking back the flowers to smell them himself.

Two seconds later the wind shifts and Dom has another violent sneezing fit, scrambling to dose himself with his inhaler again. Once he's got back his breath and wiped his eyes, he reaches for Billy's handful of white flowers and sniffs them without a twitch. "I can't believe it," he blinks. "You've found the one plant on this entire bloody island that I'm not allergic to."

He makes Billy show him the plant that the flowers came from, and pokes at it until his pills finally kick in and Darcy redoes his makeup and he's ready to wait round on set for another two hours with the rest of the hobbits before the A.D. finally gets the shot.

Later, excited, Dom pulls Billy aside and says, "Olearia cheesemanii."

"Come again?"

"Olearia cheesemanii. That plant! Kathleen helped me look it up. Cheesemanii, isn't that cool? The cheeseman plant. The only green thing in all of New Zealand that doesn't hate my nose."

"That's what we're farming, then," Billy decides. "Cheeseman bushes."

"I thought we were going to retire here to become shepherds."

"I've decided that plan lacks ambition," Billy says grandly as Dom falls into step beside him and slings an arm around his shoulders. "We should be gentry! Landholders. We'll have a farm here, and as cheeseman plants are the only thing your nose can bear, cheeseman plants we shall raise."

"I hope they're good for something," Dom says in a rare pragmatic moment.

"They're good for your breathing," Billy says, "and that's good enough for me."


The morning after the party, Feet is exactly the same as always. The music is too loud and they all peer blearily into their coffees for the first half hour, thawing and coming alive and bickering happily by the time the girls apply the hair on their toes.

At the afternoon break Billy's pulled aside by the makeup girl to fix an ear that's going a bit crooked, and when he goes to rejoin the hobbits, Dom and Elijah are speaking.

With peculiar clarity, Billy's suddenly perfectly certain that Dom is confiding to Elijah that Dom kissed Billy last night in an un-mate-like and strange but thoroughly romantic gesture, and that Billy stood there afterward saying absolutely nothing like a complete pillock, that Billy didn't kiss him back, that Billy obviously doesn't fancy him or care that way about him, and that Dom feels a fool.

Only in the next moment, Dom's expression breaks into sympathy, and Elijah looks grateful; it's obvious, they're actors, after all, their faces broadcast those feelings as clearly as if they were written across their foreheads.

Of course. It's something else entirely. Bit egotistical really, thinking just because Dom's talking to someone twelve hours after kissing Billy, Dom must be talking about that. This is ridiculous, it's like being in school again; Billy's far too old for this sort of thing, assuming the worst about whispers at the interval. Next he'll be passing notes to Dom between scenes.

Dom's an affectionate sort of bloke, he hugs and kisses everyone. For all Billy knows, he's the last of their friends that Dom's kissed with a hint of tongue and a mysterious taste.

It was Billy's most romantic moment, the moment that turned open something inside him as easy as flipping a washed shirt right-side-out, and showed him that he was in love with his best mate. But that doesn't mean it was anything like that for Dom.


Dom spins a story, with Billy's straight-faced nods and corroboration, of a news item back home about a dog that was acting strangely, eating grass and mooing for weeks and no one knew why.

Elijah and Sean don't really believe a word, but they don't exactly doubt it either. Billy loves those moments, loves stretching them out as long as possible, keeping people balanced on the thin edge between incredulity and outright disbelief. Dom's become rather good at it as well. Between the two of them, they can keep a good line going for half an hour without ever giving the game away.

"So they take samples and that, get the magnifying glass after it," says Dom, "and what do they find? Mad Cow."

"You can't see germs with a magnifying glass," Elijah scoffs.

"Some germs are quite large," Billy puts in, deadpan. "They chain together, yeah. You can spot them with a strong enough glass."

"Wait, I think I might have read something about that," Sean frowns.

"'S truth," Dom agrees, "in fact some germs are big enough to see with the naked eye."

"What?" Elijah all but shrieks.

"Some germs," Billy says, "can be used as footballs."

Dom falls against him laughing helplessly, and throws his arms around Billy in a delighted hug.


Clearly that kiss was nothing at all for Dom like it was for Billy, because that night they converge at Elijah's house, and this time when the reek of smoke grows heavy in the air, it's Dom and Elijah who disappear, and with rather more flair than Dom leaving with Billy the night before, as Dom tugs Lijah to his feet and says with a cheeky grin, "Let's find out, shall we?" and leads wide-eyed Lijah into the next room.

Billy firmly thinks of it as the next room, and not, for example, the bedroom, which it also is. But never mind that: the next room.

He's used to losing things, people, and it's not as though he ever really had Dom to begin with. He only really knew he wanted him starting last night. It won't be that hard to let go.

It's hard, though, to watch Dom and Lijah reappear after a few minutes, to see Dom's cheeky grin replaced with a much sweeter smile as he gives Lijah a peck on the forehead. To watch Lijah pull Dom into a heartfelt arms-full hug.

"Any time," Dom says, not quite softly enough.

Thinking back on it, that odd spicy flavor in Dom's mouth tasted rather a lot like clove cigarettes.


"Okay, look, Dom, I don't mind you stealing my fries," says Elijah, "and I don't mind you stealing my ketchup. But at least don't bite off the fries and then dip them back in the ketchup again."

"Why not?" Dom asks through a mouthful of half-chips, swabbing the bitten ends of his handful through the ketchup.

"Billy, make him stop," implores Elijah.

"I can't make him do anything," Billy says; he can't help thinking that if he could, stopping Dom stealing Elijah's chips would be rather low on his list.

"You're such a bitch, Dom! Haven't you ever heard about how like, people's mouths have more germs than a toilet?" Elijah demands.

"Are you sure they weren't just talking about you and your potty mouth, Lijah?" replies Dom politely.

"You're turning my ketchup thing into a fucking septic tank."

"So you're saying that people's arses are cleaner than their mouths?" Dom inquires. "That'd make rimming more sanitary than kissing, eh? Good on you, Elwood. That sort of thinking's going to make you a popular guy."

"Man, what the fuck is wrong with you," Elijah says admiringly, and gives Dom the rest of his chips.


All Billy's expectations are scuttered two days later, when they've only just been de-hobbitized. As they leave the trailer, Lijah catches Sean's hand, tugging him to stay behind.

Left walking with Dom, Billy can't quite help saying, feeling uncommonly bitter, "Are they leaving us alone for a reason?" After all, he's sure Dom much owe him an apology somehow. And they're always so in tune, Dom must know it by now.

"Go easy on them for a bit, would you Bills?" Dom asks. "Lijah's about to confess a bit of a crush on Sean, and I happen to know it's mutual," he sounds jealous, Christ, Lijah's jilted Dom for Sean, and Billy is a horrible friend not to notice any of this going on just because he was stupidly brooding on one tiny idiotic little kiss. "But it's not going to be easy on either of them, coping it out."

"Why would you have to tell me to go easy on them?" Billy demands, though as soon as he hears himself, he knows the sharpness in his own voice is answer enough.

Dom suddenly sounds exhausted. "I'm not going to apologize for kissing you, Billy." So they are still in tune after all.

Even so, Billy's drawn up short; he thought they weren't talking about that, and now suddenly they are. "Are you going to apologize for kissing Elijah?"

"What for? He asked me. He's trying to sort out the difference between kissing a bloke and kissing the bloke you're in love with. You know, before he goes and admits to a huge pash for his married best friend?" Dom shakes his head.

"There's a difference?"

"Big difference, yeah." Dom hesitates, finally admits, "Maybe I was sorting that as well. There's a difference."

And this is easy, suddenly, as easy as joking with Dom, acting opposite him, walking with Dom's arm wrapped around his shoulders; so easy Billy can't believe he was ever unsure, can't believe he was worried about it at all, as he turns to Dom and says, "Show me."


The next morning, Billy wakes up to the smell and sound of frying breakfast and finds a small white-flowered plant, hastily potted, sitting on the windowsill in his bedroom. A cheeseman plant. There's a sticky note on the side bearing Dom's loopy scribble: It's a start.

Combined with the fact that Dom's still here, that contrary to his usual morning habits Dom has managed to wake up before Billy to find him a cheeseman plant and start breakfast, that Dom is here... it's easily the most romantic moment of Billy's life to date.

Billy begins to think that, contrary to anything he ever expected for himself, his life is going to contain a lot of romantic moments from now on.