Characters: Theon Greyjoy, Robb Stark, mentions of others
Warnings: allusions to crime and violence
Summary: Written for asoiafkinkmeme: Thief!Theon & FBI or Interpol!Robb trying to catch him all over the world.
The first time Robb sees him it’s only a photo, a slap of a handsome man’s face on a screen with a secret smile and a laugh on his lips. But the picture does nothing; the picture doesn’t tell him about a throaty chuckle and strong, slim fingers that grasp at his jacket. The picture doesn’t prepare him for a hot mouth on his or the silent satisfaction of fucking in a bathroom stall. It doesn’t warn him about getting too deep or the twinge of I wish while lying in tangled sheets or the sheer terror of the single sentence, “Did you think I didn’t know who you are?”
It’s not Robb’s fault they lose him – he slips out during a huge shooting between some Lannister goons and men who are supposedly under Petyr Baelish. They’re all given new assignments and Robb gets a girlfriend, almost marries, and catches other bad guys. And it’s years later when Robb is handed a manila folder that holds a thick stack of blacked out papers and a series of photographs that make his heart stick into his throat.
“I believe you’re familiar with Theon Greyjoy,” Jon Umber (junior) says coolly. The picture smirks.
They meet in Paris, at a museum of all places. Robb’s at a social thing at behest of his mother and is about to drink his fifth champagne when the man he’s memorized walks up and takes the glass he’d been reaching for.
“I think you’ve had enough soft stuff,” Greyjoy tells him in a serious tone that’s ruined by his grin. He’s in a suit (Dior Homme) and his eyes are raking down Robb’s chest with what can only be appreciation. Robb smiles back.
“Trust me, I haven’t.” He wishes to god one of his team was here because he’s meeting Theon Greyjoy and he can’t take him in because that would cause a panic and his mother would kill him. So Robb does the next best (next most stupid) thing he can think of:
“You wanna ditch?” he asks, miming taking a shot. Greyjoy laughs.
Germany is colder than he remembers. It feels like even his tongue has frozen and is only waiting to snap off once he opens his mouth.
“I see him,” Jon calls; Theon’s sitting at a café with his sister, who’s dressed much plainer than her sibling in designer shoes. They’re smiling bitterly and Robb remembers other smiles, better smiles.
“This is personal,” Alys notes on the comm.. The talk is growing heated and Theon looks ready to strangle his sister. Robb wants badly to hold Theon’s face, to say fuck you and your lies, to hit him until they’re both bloody.
Robb wants to hold him and never let go, but he doesn’t dare admit that to himself.
Jon Umber (senior) heartily allows Robb to continue his growing friendship with Greyjoy – and anything else that occurs – as long as he can separate the job from what little twinges of real emotion are building. Robb says yes, of course he can do it, but one day he comes home to find Greyjoy sitting on the steps of his apartment with a black eye and a bloody smile.
“Hey,” Greyjoy croaks, and doesn’t protest when Robb drags him inside and gets him a pack of frozen peas. He lets Robb fuss over his scraped knuckles and pull off his shirt, even lets Robb gasp at the bruises on his shoulders. He doesn’t let Robb ask, “What the fuck happened to you,” but Robb doesn’t need to when he’s got Interpol and a bored hacker on his side.
And Robb doesn’t know it yet, but that’s the day Greyjoy becomes Theon.
Rome is good to Theon. He flirts with tourists and locals and a very drunk politician’s wife who tells him national secrets. He walks the streets without a shirt and Robb can count every tan line, see every inch of pale skin slowly creeping into gold. The skin will be warm, touched too long by the sun but with no trace of burning. Theon never burns.
Robb burns. He’s already got a patch of peeling skin on the back of his neck, flaking red and pink under ten Euros worth of sunburn lotion. His hands burn with need, with want, but they do nothing as Theon walks away not knowing he’s right there.
The first time they kiss, Theon’s drunk. Robb’s dragging him to his apartment (Theon hasn’t told Robb where he lives yet) and Theon’s snickering about something that isn’t actually funny. They’ve just gone through the door when Theon slips, grabbing Robb’s shirt and dragging him halfway down with him.
Theon bursts out laughing and Robb scowls, which only makes him laugh more.
“You’re so stupid,” Theon giggles, and grabs Robb’s face before he can comment. The kiss is long and sloppy but it’s good, really good, and Robb forgets he’s on a mission when he leans down for one more.
Robb’s pretending to be security at a large social event, an event not large enough that anyone would recognize him. There’s no comm. up right now because their superiors are getting shitfaced and no one’s supposed to acknowledge it. He’s walking through a hallway that’s been blocked off when he hears the tell-tale click of a gun.
“Hey,” a voice says behind him. Robb swallows hard and turns to find Theon, dressed in a very expensive suit and holding a very expensive gun. “Long time, Stark.”
“Greyjoy,” Robb returns, though he wants to say Theon, Theon, Theon. Theon smiles coldly.
“I really do love a man in uniform,” he sighs flatly. It’s not said suggestively at all but Robb feels heat flushing up his neck. “But honestly Stark, you couldn’t find a better way to get my attention?”
“I don’t know what you’re talking about,” Robb says, forcing himself to look at Theon’s gun. Step this way, reach for his arm, reach for his neck…Theon smirks.
“Really?” he asks, and he reaches in his jacket pocket to throw something down. It’s photos of Robb, of Jon, of Dacey, from Japan to Russia to Greece. “You’re a shit spy.”
Robb watches Theon’s back, moonlight cutting through the blinds to paint white lines on his skin. He runs a hand across the naked skin, feeling Theon shudder beneath his touch. Theon’s hair melts into the shadows and the curve of his neck glows white, smooth against Robb’s fingers. There are red marks on his arm as souvenirs of their enthusiasm but none on his back; Robb slides forward to fix that.
“Mmf,” Theon murmurs as Robb sucks at his shoulder. Robb sighs, discontent churning in his stomach. He feels guilty as he brushes a finger against Theon’s eyes, and the worst is that he doesn’t know why: Because this isn’t real? Because (because, because) it is?
“I love you,” he whispers into Theon’s skin. Theon stiffens.
“…right,” Theon says thickly, and it’s the last time Robb remembers any semblance of peace.
“Put the gun down,” Robb cautions. Theon rolls his eyes.
“You should have stayed away,” Theon says. His gun is steady but his lips are thin and a vein throbs at his neck. “I gave you the chance, you should have taken it.”
“I couldn’t,” Robb says, stepping forward. Theon tenses. “Not after…I couldn’t.”
“Well you’re an idiot,” Theon snaps. He steps backwards, nearing the entrance to the party. “We’re both liars Stark, even if you can’t bring yourself to believe it. And you’re going to let me go, or I will shoot you.”
“Try,” Robb challenges. He spreads out his arms and Theon looks hesitant, too hesitant. Robb steps forward and Theon raises his gun to his face.
Something crashes in the other room and Theon whirls; Robb jumps at him, knocking the gun away and shoving him into the floor. Theon kicks out, clawing and cursing as Robb pins him down. It doesn’t take long for Robb to slam his elbow onto Theon’s hand, locking their legs together and pressing his arm against his throat. Theon stills beneath him, eyes livid.
This is all so very familiar, as is the desperate want burning beneath his skin. Robb doesn’t think – doesn’t even try to think, doesn’t try to remember this is wrong – and kisses Theon like he’s wanted to since he saw him in Germany eight months ago.
When Robb comes home to a gun, it’s about the last thing he knows to react to. All his months of training, all his practice of yes, it was a lie, come crashing apart as he stares past the barrel of a gun at the man preparing to shoot him.
“Theon?” he asks blankly.
“Robb?” Theon mocks. He picks up a bag on the floor and slings it on his shoulder, and Robb can see American dollars peeking out. Robb doesn’t know what to do, or what Theon’s doing, so he goes for denial.
“Theon, what are you doing?”
“I’m ending our relationship,” Theon says pleasantly. He nods at a chair and Robb sits down reluctantly, itching to reach for the gun on his ankle and talk Theon down. “I mean, really, what did you expect from any of this, Stark?”
Robb goes cold. “What?”
“Not the brightest, are you?” Theon asks with a smile that clashes with the deadness in his eyes. “Did you really think I didn’t know who you are?”
Any words Robb might have had die in his mouth. He knew. He always knew. And it’s stupid, it’s hypocritical, but he feels betrayed. Everything in him hurts and he feels sick, feels faint and angry and justified, and he wants to say you shouldn’t have broken the law, you shouldn’t be smuggling for your sister and half the syndicates in London, this is your own fault, but mostly he thinks don’t, don’t, please, don’t.
“I’m sorry,” Robb says helplessly. Theon snorts.
“I bet you are,” he says. All the life and laughter is gone from his eyes and it’s Robb’s fault. Robb sits in silence and when Theon goes to cuff him, he grabs Theon’s arm and drags him closer. Theon stiffens and Robb knows he might shoot him for this but he kisses him, desperate not to forget his touch.
Theon leans in for a moment and when Robb opens his eyes, he looks sad.
“Fuck you,” Theon murmurs. There’s pain and when Robb wakes, everything is gone.
“This is Dunhill you idiot,” Theon hisses as he pulls on his suit jacket. Robb ignores him, kissing his neck and his jaw and every part of him he can. Theon shoves him hard and Robb falls back, dragging Theon by his dark tie. Theon half-lands on him and slaps Robb’s hand away from his waist.
“Theon,” Robb pleads. I’m sorry, I’m sorry, don’t, stay, please, I want you I need you I –
Theon looks down at him, eyes dark and angry.
“Fuck you,” he says without heat. He turns his head away when Robb kisses him, eyes closing as lips slide across his skin.
“This is Theon Greyjoy,” Jon Umber (senior) says. “Left the family business but does a lot of smuggling for his sister and has connections to the Boltons. We’re going to be tracking him, look for a way to get him to cooperate with us.”
“Gotcha,” Alys chirps. She immediately whispers about how good-looking he is and Dacey snickers. Robb looks at the photo (just an empty picture of a man, just one look at the shell of a person made of layers of things unsaid) and he repeats the name to himself.