Recipient: sanzorama
Author: uraneia
Pairing: Orlando/Elijah
Rating: NC-17
Summary: "It's a Wonderful Life" meets "Boys Gone Wild" meets "Donnie Darko"? An exercise in the Christmas Gothic. [AU]
Notes: For sanzorama, who requested: in order of preference orlijah, vigorli, domlijah, orlibean or vigbean. AU RPS angsty with a happy ending, also smut and playful bondage or other light kink fills me with the true spirit of Xmas.
Notes: This is my first Orlijah so I hope I didn't screw it up too bad!



"Man, you look rough."

Orlando whirled at the noise, trying not to trip over his stupid elf-shoes. He loved Christmas, he really did, or he wouldn't volunteer at the Salvation Army every year, ringing the bell and decked out in the truly ridiculous outfit to try to raise money.

It was Elijah who had spoken, another volunteer. He knew him by association -- had seen him every Christmas since he'd started volunteering, actually. They made it a habit to compete over who could raise the most money. Elijah had won three years running.

"You look the same as usual," Orlando responded a little bitterly. "I think they're closing up. You ready to go?"

It was Christmas Eve, after all, and the late rush of last-minute shoppers had finally tapered off until the wide hall of the shopping centre was completely empty, aside from the two of them. "Yeah," Elijah said. "Get me out of here, man. This place gives me the creeps when it's like this."

Orlando was frankly tempted to agree. In silence, they walked towards their designated exit. The volunteers always did this in pairs, just in case -- although Orlando would have liked to believe no one would steal from the poor on Christmas Eve, he knew too much about people.

"You're not going home for Christmas this year?" Elijah asked. "Usually you're on a plane by now, I mean -- you usually miss the last couple drives of the season."

"Too much to do," he shrugged, trying not to show how much it got to him. He was in his first year of a PhD in psychology with special interest in parapsychology, and he'd been grading assignments for his professor in his free time all week. "Sam's coming down for New Year's, though, and I'll see Mum when we go to the island on Spring Break." He paused. "What about you? No one to spend Christmas Eve with?"

Elijah held the door for him as they walked out into the brisk night air. "My family and I don't really talk much anymore. It's not so bad, except for at this time of year."

Awkward moment, thought Orlando with an inward cringe. He felt a little bit sorry for poor Elijah, who would probably not take kindly to the sentiment. "Sorry, man. That sucks."

Elijah shrugged and smiled. "You get used to it."

They met up with the Salvation Army truck driver and handed over their donation boxes to be counted. As usual, Elijah came out on top.

"It's those eyes," Orlando said enviously, aware that he was flushing a little as he said it, but thinking that, with the chapping wind, Elijah probably couldn't tell. "That's an unfair advantage, that is."

Maybe he was imagining it, but there might have been an extra little flush to Elijah's cheeks, as well. "As far as looks go, I don't think you should complain."

The driver put the donations into the safe deposit box in the truck and thanked them for their help once more before slamming the back gate shut and climbing into the front. The two of them watched him drive away in silence for a moment.

Finally, Orlando broke the silence. "So -- I don't suppose you have dinner plans?"

This time, Elijah definitely flushed. And bit his lip. And looked at the ground. He was really quite adorable. "I shouldn't --" he said, but then couldn't seem to come up with a reason why not. "Well, it is Christmas. Are you making turkey?"

"I am a student," Orlando pointed out, not defensively. "I am making cheese ravioli. With spinach, maybe."

"Garlic bread?" Elijah asked hopefully.

Well, that had been easy enough. He laughed. "Yeah, I think I can handle garlic bread. Come on, my car's this way."

It was only a short drive to the small house he shared with two other PhD students. Dom, a photography major, had left yesterday to go surfing with his boyfriend in Hawaii. His other roommate was in Chicago, visiting family.

"Nice place," Elijah commented, exhaling long enough that he could see his breath. "Kinda chilly, though."

Orlando winced. In his excitement not to be alone on Christmas Eve, he'd forgotten that that his house didn't have the most hospitable of atmospheres. He tried to shrug it off. "Yeah, the landlord's a bit of a skinflint." He gestured towards the wall. "Locked the thermostat. You want to borrow a sweater?"

"Sure, thanks man."

It took a few minutes of rummaging, but he finally found one that was clean. "Sorry about that. I don't entertain much."

"It's alright, I don't make too many house calls."

Orlando looked at him blankly.

Elijah flushed. "Forgot to mention I was a doctor, huh?"

Shaking his head, Orlando laughed incredulously. Maybe they should've gone back to Elijah's place instead -- he was suddenly a little bit self-conscious. Well, never mind. He wasn't in the mood to be alone today of all days. "You are just full of surprises." He took the ravioli noodles he'd prepared earlier from the fridge and held them up. "Hungry, doc?"

"Starved," Elijah smiled. "Where's the bread? I'll help."

Dinner was a simple affair, but tasty nonetheless. Orlando left the oven open after the garlic bread had finished broiling, warming the tiny kitchen to a comfortable temperature.

"This is good," Elijah commented, mouth half-full of searing hot ravioli.

Orlando smiled modestly. "It's the cheese. My one weakness is very expensive cheese."

"That's your only weakness?" he asked with a twinkle in his eye.

Suddenly the room was a little warmer than just comfortable.

They left the dishes soaking in the sink. Orlando detested dish-washing, and even though Elijah had offered to help he felt that it was somewhat blasphemous to let a house guest do his washing-up on Christmas Eve. "Television?" Orlando suggested, motioning towards the small living room.


In typical Christmas Eve fashion the only thing worth watching was It's a Wonderful Life. Not, Orlando thought, that that was such a bad thing. In fact, it was kind of nice to watch such an old-fashioned film on his old-fashioned television set snuggled up with someone he thought he could maybe care about.

"Sam and I used to watch this every year," Orlando said wistfully. "It sort of put everything into perspective for us, you know?"

Elijah's bright eyes peered up at him earnestly. "You'll see her soon," he said with an eerie certainty. Orlando believed him.

"Yeah," Orlando agreed, settling deeper into the old sofa with Elijah a warm weight against his chest. "What about you? You don't have any plans at all for the holidays?"

He made a noise between a hum and a sigh. "These are my plans." He only seemed a little bit sad.

Orlando, on the other hand, took those words straight to heart. What must it be like, to have nothing else to look forward to at Christmas time? He shivered a little and wrapped his arm a little tighter. "We'll have to make the best of this, then, won't we?" he said, keeping his voice as light as possible.

Elijah glanced up at him again curiously, as if he were trying to judge the meaning behind the words. There was a very attractive flush on his cheeks, Orlando noticed. "I guess we will."

Their gazes locked and the rest of the world fell away in a haze of blue. Orlando felt himself flushing. He didn't do this kind of thing -- this thing that he knew was going to happen tonight. He didn't take boys -- men -- home with him. Not ones he barely knew, anyway.

Somehow he felt like he had known Elijah for a very long time.

He wasn't disappointed when their lips met for the first time with an electric jolt followed by a steady burn. No one had ever kissed him like that before, like he was being drawn away through his lips and tongue. In his lap, Elijah exhaled heavily, running his hand up Orlando's side. "I shouldn't," he said unconvincingly.

"Like hell," Orlando growled boldly.

"Too late for that," he thought he heard Elijah laugh into his neck.

There was a frantic struggle to remove clothing -- Orlando managed to pull off both Elijah's borrowed sweater and his tee shirt before his own sweater tangled so desperately around his arms that he couldn't move.

Elijah's mouth fastened onto the pulse point on Orlando's throat at just the same time as his thumb grazed ever-so-gently across his nipple, eliciting a heartfelt groan as Orlando arched up to meet his touch. With their hips crushed together like this it was impossible to miss Elijah's arousal, pressed so neatly against his own. "Jesus!" he wriggled, trying half-heartedly to free his hands. "Elijah, take your fucking jeans off already."

"Bossy," Elijah muttered, focusing instead on Orlando's belt buckle. With one firm yank he had the too-large jeans down to Orlando's thighs.

"Or you could take mine off," Orlando hedged agreeably as Elijah wrapped his hand around his erection. His stomach muscles tightened in pleasure, and his eyes fell closed. "Just as long as they both come off eventually-"

His voice tapered off into a low groan as Elijah mouthed a wet trail from his navel to the head of his cock, finally engulfing it entirely. Orlando stopped even trying to free his hands and concentrated on breathing. "Fuck fuck fuck," he swore gently, panting. "Uh --- Elijah, condoms --- between the cushions."

Elijah stilled for a torturous moment, then pulled away briefly when he came into contact with his prize. "Got to love college students," he panted, sliding his denims down. "Keeping lube and condoms in the couch."

"Roommate's a slut," Orlando groaned as Elijah slid a slick finger inside of him. "Never saw the attraction til now."

Elijah watched him hungrily as he added another finger. The stretch burned a little until he curled his fingers up just so and Orlando nearly bit through his lip. "Me, neither."

The struggle to remove Orlando's jeans was four seconds of agony; then Elijah was inside of him, and those condoms (thought Orlando almost hysterically) were definitely ribbed for his pleasure. With his arms still bound it was all he could do to close his eyes and grasp with his legs as Elijah thrust steadily into him, cadence slowly building up speed until --

"God, yes," Orlando gasped out, vision going white around the edges as orgasm took him, breaking him apart from the inside.

He just barely heard Elijah calling his name, and then everything went black.


Orlando awoke in his bedroom -- at least he thought it was his bedroom, only it had never looked quite so bright before. The white walls and sheets shone with a light that was almost their own, and the sun sparkled merrily through the window. Jeez, Orlando thought. Had it really been that long since he'd gotten laid that the world changed this much afterwards?

Orlando was about to doubt it when Elijah appeared in the doorway, naked as the day he was born and suffused with the same brilliant glow as everything else seemed to be. Oddly enough his eyes were drawn first to Elijah's, the bold blue stare raising the hair on the back of his neck. "Good morning," Orlando said, noticing for the first time how quiet the house was. "Merry Christmas."

An expression Orlando couldn't identify flickered on Elijah's face. "Orlando, there's something you should know."

He didn't even leave time to wonder whether this relationship -- whatever it was -- was coming to a premature end. "It's not Christmas."

What? Orlando wondered. "I missed Christmas?"

"In a manner of speaking." Elijah sat gingerly at the end of the bed. "Do you remember when we made the garlic bread in the oven?"

"Yes...." Orlando hedged. Do you remember when we had sex on the couch? Where is this going?

Elijah shifted. "Well, you left the oven on. And your cheap landlord, well, he'd suspected there was a gas leak, but of course he never told you. The whole house went up in flames last night."

Orlando's jaw dropped as the implications hit. "I'm dead?"

"I'm afraid so."

The news wasn't as shocking or upsetting as he'd imagined. In fact, he felt somewhat removed from any emotion. Curiosity, though, still had a pretty strong hold. He could probably still handle arousal, too, by the way he was reacting to Elijah's naked body. "Where are we? And who are you?" he added for good measure. "Doctor, my ass."

"I was a doctor," Elijah protested. "In 1887, when I died." He sighed. "They call me Morty here, but I prefer Elijah if it's all the same to you. Being Death's apprentice is sort of an odd job."

Shit. Orlando looked up. "So, about where we are...."

"Look out the window."

Orlando did. White street, white houses, white picket fences. Lots of people walking around with the same sort of luminescence he attributed to Elijah. "I guess I'm not in hell."

"That's a fair assumption," Elijah smiled. "Come on, I'll show you around."


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