Absolute Beginners
by Janete
April 2001

Disclaimer: If they were ours, there wouldn't have been issues
starring Howard the Duck.

Fandom: Generation X

Summary: The boys hang out in the basement.

Pairing: Skin/Chamber

Ratings note: NC-17

Authors' notes: See, there was Sheila, and she told Te all about
Angelo, and she knew she had to get her hands on the little
'mano. Then there's Jane sick fascination with Chamber. <g>

Jane sez: My fascination with Chamber is not sick.

Acknowledgements: To freakish mutations! Title snitched from
David Bowie.

Feedback makes your penis bigger. janestclair14@hotmail.com,


Jono lives in the basement because he likes it down there.  Even if
sometimes he's so miserable he can hardly stand to get up.  Paige
doesn't *get* that on some very fundamental level.  She keeps trying
to drag him outside, make him go running with her.  Whereas Angelo
just comes down and sits with him.  Reads comics or flips through the
albums in their fruit-crate shelves, or occasionally just curls up with
him and talks softly into Jono's hair.

Mostly nothing things, like his theories on how the collective shame
over boy band love (once it's finally over) will drive the entire
earth into a worldwide depression, and how spandex is an FOH plot
to humiliate all mutants, everywhere.

Jono smiles into Angelo's head and dozes for the most part.
Sometimes it seems that's all he ever does, but it's warm, and it's
safe, and it's his in some way that he can't quite puzzle out.
Sometimes Angelo shapes his face into these eerie grey doppelgangers
of people they know, people from TV.  People from the album covers.
Jono knows how much it hurts, but it's kind of amazing, still.

Face to face with a young David Bowie and more than a little
embarrassed. Old phase, old wants. Glad of the bandages to hide...
what? Hide something, as if all that energy might show a blush,
somehow, while Angelo did a *horrible* British accent and talked
about what a terrible lay Mick Jagger was.

Once upon a time, Jono would have kissed him for it.  And it
wouldn't necessarily have even meant anything except that he was
happy and grateful.  Not a possibility now, and he can't seem to
gather himself up to do much more than sort of nuzzle into
Angelo's neck.

And Angelo strokes him.  This strange, intimate thing that he isn't
going to resist and doesn't want to.  Long, long fingers trace his
vertebrae, pushing the bandages down a little to stroke the still-
intact skin there and teasing at the fine, slightly sweaty hair he
finds there.  Tells him about the bizarre adventures of Artie and
Leech and Howard the Duck, and then sings a slightly obscene
version of "The Man Who Sold the World," which Jono wouldn't
have bet was possible.

Reaches over Jono, eventually, and nabs a plate to serve as an
ashtray, lights up.  Lays the plate on his stomach and lies on his
back with Jono pressed against his side and smokes, quiet and
happy and holding forth on MTV.

At the end of a blown-out breath, he turns his head to the side
and kisses Jono's forehead.

Too easy to think he's simply doing all the things Jono can't,
living life a little larger so Jono can fit *in* it. It's a pretty
thought, and a nasty one, too. The kind of thought that, at this
point, he's pretty fucking good at thinking.

Almost easier to surrender to what's left of living down here in
the basement, knowing you've got someone to do the *work* of
it up in the world.

Angelo showers upstairs. There's still lots of jagged tile left on the
floor of Jono's own shower, from the time when the water suddenly
went scalding, and he lost control.

Too much to clean it up, using it just a little more mortification of
the flesh.  Thinks about asking Angelo where the quote comes from,
but then they never really talk about things like that. Jono rants,
and sometime Jono cries, but talking about it is... too much.

Also easy to imagine the kiss as a function of pity, a useless apology
for everything's Jono's lost and is losing by drying up and curling up
down here, waiting for the energy to maybe get bored and leave his
corpse still for a moment, forever.

Sometimes he wishes that just knowing it's all bullshit was enough
to make it go away. Those are good days, when he jokes to Angelo
about being the poster child for Troubled Mutant Youth. He even
plays the guitar... but only on the really good days.

Light punch from the side. "I did it because I wanted to, angst

Smoke drifts around Angelo's head, not helping his demon image
at all.  Jono wonders vaguely what it says about him that he deals
better with being kissed by a demon that he did getting kissed by
an angel.  Never touching Paige again, most likely, after the sheer
destruction of that first attempt.  But they're both just monstrous
enough that maybe he and Angelo won't break anything apart.

Angry, though, because at this particular moment he'd really like
to be able to return the kiss.  Something small enough not to steal
what little energy he has, but enough to let Angelo know that,
bastard that he is, he's grateful.

Just snuggles closer, though, letting his residual sense of smell
pick out the waft of Angelo's cigarette and a quiet, sharp aftershave,
and something warm and barely present underneath that has to be
Angelo's body.  Hair and the day's sweat lingering on his undershirt
and bare arms.  One of which comes around Jono and pulls him
closer in.

And Angelo goes back to telling him about the evil tendencies of
Monet's collection of porcelain dolls.  How each one of them has
an individual personality, and at night they come out to stalk the
school, and possibly murder people in their beds.  Something like
the movie they watched last Saturday, or all of them except M,
who decided she'd rather be elsewhere.

Rubs Jono's back while he's talking.

Just through his t-shirt at first, but eventually underneath it.
Along the narrow strip of skin between the waist of his jeans and
the bottom of the bandages.  Eventually around his waist to follow
that elastic line.  Up onto his hips and down, inside Jono's jeans to
rest on the small, too-prominent point of his hip.

Asking with his touches, and somewhere deep inside Jono wants to
be arching into them, wants to beg, demand, plead, *feel* this, but
it's all dull.

Calling it grey an insult to Angelo's skin.

He *can't* do this, can't be this for his friend, and he squeezes his
eyes shut against it, stiffens until Angelo pulls back, still talking
about vapid little doll eyes, and the scratch of lace on your cheek
that tells you it's much too late.

Screaming. Screaming now would be so fucking *good*, but Jono
tries to channel the energy into his limbs instead, gets himself up
on an elbow and looks down at the other boy. Waiting until the last
of the smoke is gone before pressing his forehead against Angelo's
mouth. His eyes and the bare edge of cheek.

Jono rests there for a moment, letting his fingers find the rucked
edge of Angelo's t-shirt. Settle there and stroke cotton and warm
skin that jumps beneath his fingertips. Feels the confusion in
Angelo's mind and tries to send something like his feelings. The
warmth and affection, the need to answer *Angelo's* need with
whatever he can give.

*I need to touch you, Jono...*

*I can't I can't just please let me...*

And Angelo settles back, stubs out the cigarette and deliberately
puts his hands beneath his head, sends something like the
approximation of a kiss that doesn't hurt, never destroys and Jono
slips his hand beneath the t-shirt and presses down.

The heartbeat under his fingers is, for some reason, unexpected.
Jono traces the shape of it, the way he can touch the rhythms in
music and the tone of people's voices.  Curl of it around Angelo's
ribs and the slightly, smooth muscles of his abdomen.  He feels
Angelo tense and then deliberately relax under the trace of his
fingers, stay very still while Jono draws out the line of each of his

The V of his breast bone descending.

Follows the line down to Angelo's navel and loops delicately around
it, catching his guitar calluses on the dark hairs he finds.

Angelo's hand comes down on his shoulder almost convulsively.
Needing to touch and jerking almost instantly away with a breathed
apology.  And Jono wants to tell him it's OK and can't.  Just goes
back to detailing Angelo's chest with his fingertips.

He finds a very small nipple while following the stretch of a rib.
Rubs over it, letting the roughness of his finger work, and feels
Angelo gasp in response.  Pinches.  The whole of Angelo's torso
heaves in answer this time, almost knocks him loose, and he can
feel Angelo working to hold himself still.  Wordlessly begging for it.

A hand ghosts along Jono's back again.  Jono jerks away from it.

"Sorry, amigo.  I just...  You..."

*Shut up*

Not angry or even particularly paying attention.  Focused on the
nearness of Angelo's skin and how it thins as he moves down.
Almost translucent by the time Jono pushes the waistband of
Angelo's pants down the couple of inches he needs to follow the
hairline down.  He knows, intellectually, that he's roughly where
Angelo was when Jono pushed him off.  Reaches out with a little
mental touch and gets permission to keep going.  Lets his fingertips
trail farther down, under the elastic of Angelo's boxers, and combs
them through the rough hair at the base of his cock.

Fingers touch his hair.  Jono's got his head cushioned on Angelo's
belly, and he turns to look up at his friend.  Who's fierce and
wide-eyed and utterly unapologetic.  Aroused and *needing* to
touch, sending that need at Jono in as focused a way as a non-psi

He whispers, "Please."

And with his own fingers buried in the dark curls at Angelo's
groin, Jono can't say no.

*for him* he thinks, as internally as he can, and endures the
gentle touches at his scalp, gentle massage and gentle *everything*,
as if Jono could break even more, lose it all with one
misunderstood physical message.

Angry at that, angry at it being even remotely true, and Jono dives
at Angelo's cock, raw satisfaction as he feels individual hairs give at
Angelo's surprise, as Jono nuzzles the shaft with his ears and that
scrap of cheek.

A little too hard and dangerous, but the bandages don't so much
slip as *warn* him and Jono remembers *taste* as finally something
more than an abstract, something thick, the feeling of *tang* and
the ghosting presence of a weight he can't suckle.

Eyes shut and grip much too hard on Angelo's thigh and he sends
his wishes to the other boy, gives him what he'd so much like to
take. Shaping his face from mirror-memory, shaping psi-lips around
a cock the color of drying blood on a deep charcoaled canvas.

Sends more, and more, overpowering Angelo's mind with
sensations they'll never feel, memory and imagination and need
until he's moaning, they're both moaning, silent and not, and Jono
can finally settle for using his hands.

Surprised by how steady they are.  He's shaking all over and it
doesn't make any *sense* for his hands to be steady.  Hot and rough
on Angelo's cock, crueler than he wants to be, even angry as he is.
Slick with Angelo's pre-come and nothing else, and that's not quite
enough, but Angelo just moans every time Jono tightens his grip.

He finds he's pulling at Angelo's pants and underwear with his
other hand.  Gets them down to grey knees and a bit below, traces
back up.  Bright awareness that has to be Angelo in the back of his
head, feeling the unnatural warmth of Jono's touch on bare skin.
Scrape of his palm along the inside of one thigh, up higher and
high enough that his elbow gets in the way and he can't *reach*
properly. Pulls back and comes in again, under Angelo's knee, holds
the weight of the thigh above him on his shoulder.

The hairs he caught his fingers on before trail down below Angelo's
cock, haze the texture of his balls and slide father down, towards
the small darkness of his body.  That Jono approaches and then pulls
back from, aware that he needs to slick his fingers and moves
automatically to lick them before he realizes he *can't*.  The
realization hazes his vision for a second, draws a tiny sob up from
inside him.

He doesn't think he's obvious, but Angelo must notice.  Because
the fingers in his hair are suddenly entirely comforting, and
Angelo's curled himself up to be suddenly a tight, *present* body
without moving his hips at all.  Doesn't say anything, but gives Jono
a very serious look that details exactly how much Angelo wants him.

That's what he has to concentrate on.  Angelo.  His body, his
reactions, giving him this and if there's no Jono in the process,
maybe that's for the best.

So.  Stroking Angelo's cock.  Cradling his balls in one palm and
stroking the place where they join his body with rough-gentle
fingertips.  Rubs his thumb over the grey, swollen head, and draws
out a searing gasp, does it again and gets a moan.  Slick and sticky
and trailing after his fingers.  Psychic lips and long strokes and with
Angelo's legs and body pulled up so far, he doesn't seem to notice
Jono's fingers traveling until they're deep between his ass-cheeks,
stroking the collected wetness over hole and pucker and drawing a
sound out of Angelo that's half-begging and two-thirds curse.

Angelo's fingers in his hair tighten convulsively, and the body
against Jono's cheek twists hard enough to knock him back a little.
He's careful, though.  Keeps stroking and teasing and he can *feel*
it, the seconds building up to Angelo's orgasm wire-tight against
his mind and shockingly bright.  Wanting and begging and the
screamed mental *JONO* so loud in his head that Jono jerks back.
Squeezes with his grip hand and pushes with the other and goes
*in*, touches and finger-fucks him at the right moment and gets a
bright, pure moan and a warm, wet spill over his fingers.

Jono slides off the bed.  Knees beside it and presses his head to
the wood frame and shakes.  Can't quite bring himself to pull his
semen-slicked hand away, though.  Leaves it flat on Angelo's belly,
body-cued to the steady pulse underneath the skin.

So close to slipping back into himself, that pulse maybe the only
thing grounding him to the real. Jono's own wet hand a goad. To
taste Angelo like some cosmic *tease*, like all the gods and the
angels and the powers are just the infinite form of the schoolyard
bully. All open mouths and gritty mean laughter.

After a while, Angelo takes him by the wrist and brings his hand
to his mouth. Tastes himself there, and sends everything he can
about it to Jono, psi-ghost of it behind his bandages making him
gasp deep inside Angelo's mind.

Someplace safe and *real* to lose himself, though what he really
wants, what he thinks he *needs* is the opposite. Jono crawls
back onto the bed and lies atop Angelo, tries to feel the slip and
slide of bandage against flesh, and presses his face against the other
boy's, eyes open and waiting, at least for this.

Understanding there, that in order to be taken he must give, and
Angelo... Angelo wraps his arms around Jono and kisses the
bandages over his face again and again, holding him close and
*touching* him. Friend and lover, smile evident in every inch of flesh
that touches him.

As though of course, of *course* this is what had been needed the
whole time. Some strange *broadening* inside Jono, terrifying and
brighter than the sun through the dusty windows.

Slipping beneath the waistband of his jeans, and it's OK, more than
OK, absolute necessary that every inch of skin be touched. Exposed
and loved by Angelo. Shifting up to undo the fly, push and kick
them down along with his ratty boxers and move close again. Safer
to be on top of Angelo, instead of risking shifting the bandages by
lying on his side.

Awkward, but Angelo just huffs out a breath and laughs a little,
and now each breath moves them both together, cock to cock. Skin
and *feeling*, beyond the spirit and psi, just flesh. Carnal, but not
base.  Together, and as they move Jono feels himself spiraling down
to an arrow of consciousness fletched to his cock.

Feels Angelo get hard again, and waits for the moment...

Angelo closing his eyes and whispering. Just Jono's name and yes
and God, over and over as his hands find Jono's ass and squeeze.

Tickle back at the tops of his thighs, dip between to caress and heft
his balls. Touched there not with experience but with pure *want*,
like his fraction of a body is something to be desired.

Too huge to comprehend, making Jono close his own eyes and
spread wider.  Brace himself up a little and move with it, catching
Angelo's cock between his thighs, and even in the cleft of his ass.
*Moving* with it as Angelo gasps and begins to struggle a little.
Holds Jono tighter, holds Jono still and *pushes* at him.

Instant where the head of Angelo's cock slides wet and determined
across his asshole.  Makes Jono start.  Makes him aware of the
softness in him there, this *path* into his body, and he suddenly
*wants*.  Wants that in him.

Jono drops his head into the curve of Angelo's shoulder and rubs his
nose along the skin.  Concentrates until he can produce some
approximation of breath.  Asking and not, because the words he
knows have all crawled off elsewhere, and all he can manage are
these almost-kisses and a soft, wordless telepathic *beg*.

Shift of the chest under him that almost knocks him loose, and when
Jono pulls his head up, he sees Angelo straining to reach the body
lotion on the floor.  Unscented so that at least he doesn't have to
feel like a freak, and terribly necessary.  All of him cracking in its
absence.  Scooped out on Angelo's fingers.  He expects them pushed
into him and gets this new surprise when Angelo warms it first, then
rubs Jono's lower back and his ass with slick hands.  Digging into the
shell of his body so deliberately, the fingers inhumanly long and
stretching to cover him from the bottom of the bandages to his
tailbone.  Warm and comforting and not enough, and Jono begs
again, closer to words.  Rubs his face against that grey shoulder and
then up, letting his nose and forehead read the angles of Angelo's
face and the hair-roughness around his mouth that he's been calling
a goatee.

"Hey, *fuck* you.  I'll have you know I've had *compliments*."

*If you say so, mate.*

There they are.  Words.  Jono digs and finds the one to ask,
*C'mon, Angelo.  Fuck me.  Please.*

"Shhh.  In a minute."  Steady and calm and nothing like the
occasional hump-twist of Angelo's hips against his belly.

Angelo's tongue's tracing the rim of his ear when the finger goes in.
Little curve of it in him, *crooking* and pushing and *in* him in a
way that he wouldn't have believed.  Like a real body.  Delicate
little wet swirl in his ear punctuating the first rub against his
prostate.  Chuff of laughter on that wetness when Jono's eyes
widen and he jerks helplessly.  "Steady, amigo."

*'M steady.*

He gets an arm around his waist while two fingertips push in.
Making him hold still, careful of the bandages and somehow careful
too of the too-thin lines of Jono's body.  Loses the arm and instead
gets hands spreading his thighs wider, then two index fingers
pushing into him together, spreading him open.  Stroke of other
fingers across the openness, half-teasing and edged with reverence.

"Es lindo, Jono."



Kisses him again, deeper.  Pulls the fingers out and scoots Jono's
knees up around his ribs, steadies Jono and strokes him while he
lifts, carefully, and pushes himself down on Angelo's cock.

"Es lindo, es bonito, te quiero oh *fuck* JONO!  Yessss."

More than he could have said himself.  Stretched and suddenly
somehow *human* inside himself and *aching* hard.  Jono
snatches the hand reaching up to stroke his chest and closes its
fingers around his cock, bucks into the new touch and then wails
silently at the sensation of Angelo moving inside him.  Hard and
*deep*, and for a minute he has to work himself on it any way he
can.  Just to get the worst edge off.  Then leans forward and feels
Angelo angle his hips up.  So that by the time he's laid back down,
arch in his back but hips and chest touch and that's all he wanted,
Angelo's thrusting gently.  And the kisses on his cheekbones are
their own startling worship.

Moving to rock together, feel it, feel Angelo inside him and all that
*heat*. Slick and full like nothing else, one hand twined in Angelo's
and the other bracing him. Muscles straining but nothing, *nothing*
could make him want to find a better position. There *is* no better
position suddenly, not one that doesn't include Angelo's cock and his
mouth and his scraggly

*Fuck you*


hair on his face.

Somehow whole to be fucked, no fraction could possibly be
allowed this.  Flexing and working knees and thighs to take it
faster, harder and the funny-sick and hot thought of even more
skin --

-- followed immediately by an even deeper fuck, one that makes
him scream in Angelo's mind before he can even think and
they've stopped.

Or Angelo's stopped, a fact Jono's barely aware of as he grinds
himself down and begs.

*didn't hurt just... do that again...*

*are. are you sure?*


And Angelo bucks just as he was grinding down again and stretches
inside him. Not much, not as much as he *could* but it's good, it's
bloody fantastic

*doomed to be a size queen*

Angelo laughing at him and holding him a little tighter, fucking a
little harder, in control for maybe seconds before Jono knows he's
going to come, just like this, spitted and stroked and. Loved.
Despite everything.

And can't do anything to stop the rush, even as Angelo hitches at
the flood of awful images Jono inadvertently shares just before
coming hard, forehead pressed to Angelo's and shuddering.

Feels Angelo slip back to his normal size with something like
relief and

*couldn't come like that, Jono, sorry...*

apology, focusing on the friction and the burn, amped a
dozen-fold after his orgasm. Resting slack and pliant while Angelo
buries himself inside again and again, biting back moans that make
his lazy cock want to twitch.

*so good*

Jono gets something like his breath back and clenches down, in and
out of rhythm until Angelo goes ragged, yelling a little now but Jono
feels as though he's watching from a distance. This man, his friend,
fucking his body and desperate with it, enjoying it, *needing* it more
than anything else in the seconds before he comes.

Needing whatever he sees as Jono, bruised and bandaged and --

On his back before he can do a thing, gasping as they separate and
Angelo *glares* down at him, still panting, still half-hard.

But neither of them say a word, and eventually Angelo lights
another cigarette.

Very quiet in the basement for a while.  Just Angelo's breathing and
the small shifting noises of people above them in the house, and the
light coming in through the dusty windows gets dimmer.  And Jono
gets to contemplate the ache in his ass, how it's more of a good
thing than he would have thought.  Quiet, separate from Angelo,
though the grey fingers keep playing over his bandages, just softly,
like Angelo can't help himself.

And eventually Jono says, *I'm sorry, Ang*

Grey-black look.

*I don' know what I did, but I'm sorry*  Too aware of the anger that's
crushed out with Angelo's cigarette.  Wanting to fix it, wanting back
the undeserved moment when Angelo looked at him like Jesus.


*I'm sorry*

"C'mere."  Angelo extends the cigarette-less hand and arm and
makes a space that contains Jono when he moves into it.  Curls
himself around Jono's bare shoulders and pulls him in.  Hugs him
tight.  Kisses his hair.


Mental touch, sharp and loud to get his attention, and

*Jono Jonoeyes Jono'scheekbones Jono'snose Jono blackredwhite
hands lashes hips legs eyes eyes Jono'seyes purer deeper brown
than anything I've ever seen*

wave of Angelo's sight and touch pushing in at him.  All of it *of*
him, skewed somehow to miss the obvious damage.  And he knows
it isn't accurate and somehow he's still thankful.  Wonderful
kindness of it, this moment when he's a complete person and in
which Angelo loves him.

*No shit, amigo*

Not something he can assimilate, and so he doesn't think about
it hard.  Just wiggles in closer and lets Angelo hang onto him.


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