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A Dangerous Concept

By Nova
Page 2 of 5

**He wanted me and, at that moment, I wanted him too. But he had seen me vulnerable, which was insupportable. I pulled away and smiled at him. His heart in his eyes, open for anyone to read.

Although I dare say that melting look hardened when I strolled past him and returned to my bunk. Certainly, by the time he came to recruit me to his cause, he was surly and challenging, none of the manipulative techniques that he employed on my fellow convicts.

I was, I admit it, faintly piqued, even though I was safer that way.**

Folding his arms behind his head, Avon examined the incident. What if he had followed up on the smile by fucking Blake against the wall, then and there? No, the result would have been the same - he withdrawing afterwards to protect himself, Blake hurt and offended and, ultimately, angry. Better to imagine a situation where he rejected Blake initially and then regretted the rejection. More plausible and, in fact, closer to the truth, since he had at times felt a brief frisson of regret. Supposing he had acted on that transitory impulse, what might have happened next? Blake would, of course, have held onto his anger. He had a talent for sustained rage: against the Federation and Avon, at any rate. So it would have been necessary to plan a campaign of seduction. But how?

Interesting. I shall plan it now. That ought to keep my mind occupied for a while.

Over the next two cycles, all Avon's waking hours were spent courting an imaginary Blake. He worked on the fantasy as intently as he would have worked on one of Zen's programs, testing and adjusting and recalibrating. Inventing strategies and dismissing them in advance. Inventing strategies and watching Blake dismiss them. Inventing strategies and seeing that they would move him nearer to his goal, although not quite achieving it.

Exbar was a turning point, he decided. Shocked by having unintentionally put Blake in danger, he had abandoned his usual policy of armed neutrality and Blake had responded with an equally unusual show of ferocious protectiveness. And then, too, there was Blake's obvious interest in his pretty cousin, culminating in a farewell kiss that had made Avon wonder whether Blake was really the dedicated celibate he appeared to be.

**Ah. Jealous, were you?

A little, perhaps.**

Very well then, he could use that mixture of emotions as a prompt. He pictured himself sitting on the edge of his bunk late that night, still stirred by the day's events. Making a decision, rising and going to knock at Blake's door. With some plausible excuse: for example, needing help with the regen cast on his wounded arm, which would inevitably require him to slip off the dressing gown draped over his shoulders, offering a calculated display of white skin.

Then, as he paused to consider his next move, the dream-Blake reached out and ran a hand down his bare chest, tracking the swirls of dark hair as far as the navel, splaying a broad palm across the buckle of his belt with unmistakable intent.

Avon tensed. Up to that moment the dream-Blake had been under his control but now, suddenly, he seemed to have taken on a life of his own. It was a trifle unnerving, especially since his actions were remarkably consistent with what Avon knew of the real Blake, a man not notably given to equivocation or ambiguity.

**Well, of course. The dream-Blake is a projection, based on the data you have accumulated over the last year and a half. It has no objective reality. You are merely anticipating its reactions more quickly than when you began. 'Practice makes perfect,' they say and so your dream-Blake is now perfection.

Unlike the real Blake.**

Reassured that his enterprise was altogether reasonable, Avon allowed himself to continue. He imagined practised fingers working at the buckle. Closed his eyes and sensed the heat of Blake's body as he moved closer. Breathed Blake's remembered scent, rich as wild honey, flavoured now with an acrid tang of sweat. Leaned back and opened his mouth to Blake's kiss.

Ambushed by his imagination, he heard a gasp echo off the walls of the cell. For a brief elated instant he attributed it to Blake but even when he recognised his own voice, the spell remained unbroken. He could almost taste the slippery satin inside Blake's cheeks and the rough velvet of Blake's tongue. He could almost feel the mass of muscle under his hands and the pressure of Blake's erection, hard against his own stiff cock. So convincing - and so convincingly erotic that, after he had replayed the kiss several times to finetune the details, it seemed inevitable that he should start imagining what it would be like to fuck Blake.

That cock, to begin with. He had seen it in the shower room on Liberator, of course, but he was surprised at how clearly he remembered it. The exact shade of rose: the precise set of the balls, heavy in their chamois sac: the lush dark curls around the groin, startling in their contrast to Blake's hairless chest: and, above all, the sheer size, large enough in its ordinary state but fit for a colossus when he pictured it erect.

He shivered pleasurably and laid a hand on his own cock, to assist his memory further. As his fingers circled the shaft, the dream-Blake settled over him and pinned him to the mattress. Avon's breath caught in his lungs, trapped by an imaginary weight. His hips bore down hard. His erection swelled and lifted and strained against the dream-Blake's thigh. He stroked it at a leisurely, meditative pace, sometimes turning his hand into Blake's hand, at other times turning his cock into Blake's cock. Shifting at will between illusion and reality, confident of his ability to enjoy and master both, until suddenly, without conscious volition, the grip around the shaft tightened in an ecstatic spasm that jerked an answering spasm of ecstasy from his balls. He writhed and twisted. Whispered, 'Yes, Blake, now' and came, thrusting into the dream-Blake's fist, feeling the dream-Blake's sperm fountain between his fingers, arching and crying out and slamming himself against the dream-Blake's solid chest.

It was appallingly real. Avon sat up, shocked and panting, barely able to believe that he was alone. He wiped his hand across the blanket in a quick, dismissive gesture and curled into a ball, clutching his knees to his chest and rocking back and forth. Images of Blake forced their way past the protective barrier that he had raised against them - Blake smiling, Blake naked and sweaty, Blake touching his cheek with a look of incredulous wonder - but he groaned and pushed the images away.

**This is madness. I have begun to believe in my own creation. What next? A descent into utter imbecility?**

He lifted his head and gazed at the darkness, his mind in chaos, unable to let himself think, in case he succumbed to the fantasy again. But as he stared and shivered, another image began to form in his brain: the pages of an article he had once read, imprinted on his photographic memory. The writer had been describing the effects of sensory deprivation - fugue, vertigo, heart fibrillations, self-laceration, an inability to differentiate between dreams and waking. Disintegration of the personality, far more complete than anything he had experienced so far.

**Stop feeling sorry for yourself. There are worse forms of madness than the ability to visualise a good fuck. Consider the alternatives and you will see that, under your present circumstances, it is in fact eminently rational to take refuge in a dream-world.**

He laughed and stretched and felt his muscles begin to relax. Lounging back on the mattress, he let the dream-Blake return. A momentary twinge of fear at the power that the image had over him and then he shrugged and accepted the situation.

**Lost in the desert, people will drink their own urine to survive. My dreams are considerably less bitter - and just as necessary for survival.**

The last of his reservations slipped away. Avon sighed and gave in to the dream. During the cycles that followed, he imagined fucking Blake in every possible position and mood. Rough, tender, imperious, suppliant. In haste on the flight deck. Slow and languorous in Blake's cabin. Stroking each other's cocks, thrusting against each other's thighs, coming in each other's mouths. The first heart-pumping instant of laying claim to another man's arse.

For hours or days or more, he was caught in a sensual obsession. **As one would be, were such a reversal to take place in reality.** And later, when all that yearning and passion and fulfilment started to seem a little too loaded with sentiment, Avon smiled in pleasurable malice and began to orchestrate their first fight. It was easy enough to imagine, given that he and Blake had fought so hard and so often, although he had not anticipated the regret that he felt when the dream-Blake, incurably sentimental, lost their war of words.

He tossed and turned on the mattress, lips pinched tight on an apology. If he had been asked where he was at that moment, Avon might have been able to reply that he was in solitary confinement on the planet Kaliferon: but at another level of reality he was in his cabin on Liberator, attempting, half-reluctantly, to find a way of healing the breach with the dream-Blake. What would Blake want from him? A retraction? No, too facile. Blake would demand more than that. He would want -

**Oh yes, of course. I should have seen it before. Blake, with his mania for certainties, could hardly be satisfied with anything less than a full account of my feelings. But what do I feel? I am obsessed with the dream-Blake but do I love him?

Yes.

Well now, could I tell him so?**

An uncounted period of time, during which the normal operations of body and mind seemed to be suspended, and then, finally:

**Yes. I must.**


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