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23 November 2010 @ 09:19 pm
Shooting the Moon, 1/1  
Title: Shooting the Moon
Pairing: Arthur/Eames
Words: ~4000
Rating: R
Warnings: Sexual situations.
Summary: Arthur is asexual. Eames is ... not. A bedtime story for asexuals.
Author's Note: Based on this prompt: Arthur's asexual; but he finds himself romantically attracted to Eames. Problem is he sees Eames as a highly sexual person and he doesn't think Eames would be even slightly interested in a relationship with a nonsexual partner. So Arthur tries, very awkwardly, to initiate sex.



“That's just not legal, brother,” Yusuf is saying amusedly when Arthur first walks into the warehouse. “And by that I mean to say, some of us value our lives.”

“What's not legal?” Arthur asks curiously.

Eames spins around, his face lighting up the way it always does whenever Arthur opens himself up to a well-aimed quip or comment.

“I was asking Yusuf to whip up some sort of concoction that would help you loosen up,” he says. “Take away that stick in your arse. So that other things might replace it.”

“A date rape drug,” says Arthur.

“Not at all. Something to make you like me.”

Arthur doesn't even think about it. “Nothing in the world could make me like you, Eames.”

He's used to their sparring matches, Eames matching him barb for barb. What he's not used to is the expression that comes over Eames' features. He looks slightly crestfallen.

“Can't I try?” he says.

Arthur takes a moment to consider the words, decipher any hidden meanings, analyze his tone. It sounds clean.

“You can try,” he says doubtfully.

The next morning Arthur finds flowers on his desk.

“I don't like flowers,” he tells Eames, shoving them onto his desk. “They make me sneeze.”

“What do you like?” Eames asks, frowning as though he's taking this whole thing seriously. Which he can't be. Because he's Eames.

“No hints,” says Arthur.

Eames watches him all day. Arthur can feel his gaze, even while he's working his ass off to scrounge up information on the mark, exhausting himself on Cobb's orders.

The next morning it's a cup of coffee on his desk. He sniffs it and tastes it. It's brimming with caffeine and sugar, just how Arthur likes it, and it's really, really good.

He stifles a smile, but Eames must note his reaction, because the coffee becomes a daily occurrence, always made the exact same way, like it was tailored to Arthur's tastes.


+
Arthur has a problem.

The thing is this: Arthur has never been sexually interested in anyone before. Ever. In his life.

And he's not attracted to Eames.

But he likes him. And Eames has made it abundantly clear that he's attracted to Arthur.

He's screwed.


+
The first time Arthur realized he was different, he was twelve and at a classmate's sleepover with both boys and girls in attendance. There was giggling and blushing and talk of crushes. A group of them played Spin the Bottle in the basement and he had to kiss Annie Berry, who was pretty though self-conscious about her braces. Arthur then had to wonder why his friends would make themselves so voluntarily uncomfortable, before realizing: he was the only one who felt like that. He'd never even had a crush.

Arthur can appreciate a beautiful woman or an attractive man in an aesthetic sense, but whatever thing inside him that's supposed to make him feel physical attraction is broken. He suffered through puberty like everyone else and he got sexual urges now and then like everyone else; but, he gathered, unlike everyone else, he had no desire to do anything about them. Either by himself or with another person.

By the time he was seventeen and had never had a girlfriend, his friends started asking him if he was gay. Arthur identified as straight, but he was starting to realize, the reason for that was plainly that that's what was expected of him. Ultimately, Arthur is as unattracted to women as to men, no more and no less. He didn't think that made him bisexual. Instead, he started thinking of himself as having no sexuality. The word doesn't even seem to belong in the same sentence as his name.

The thing is, he wants a relationship. He does. He wants to have somebody he can be close to and trust and share things with. He maybe even wants to get married, someday.

He just wishes he could skip the whole sex thing.

He's only ever tried to explain this to one person, a friend of his in college who'd had several boyfriends and seemed to know what she was talking about. She had smiled knowingly and said: “I think you'll feel differently when you actually have a boyfriend or girlfriend.”

Arthur wonders when the hell it became more socially acceptable to be gay than to have no sexuality at all.


+
With Arthur's go-ahead, Eames tackles this courting business with abandon over the course of the three weeks the job takes. Mainly it's espressos and books he thinks Arthur will like. When Arthur finds his favourite brand of rich, extra-dark chocolate on his desk -- several bars, in a wrapped basket -- he frowns.

“Are you cheating? Did you ask Cobb?”

“I've been paying attention, that's all,” Eames says, looking quietly gleeful that his offering has been deemed worthy. Arthur notices he isn't even wearing paisley.

“You probably cheated,” Arthur says, but he accepts the gift and it's maybe kind of a nice thought that Eames has been paying attention to what Arthur likes.

That's when Arthur knows he is very screwed, because he's already been romantically interested in Eames for awhile now; and now, with each passing day, he wants more of him. Eames could be that person he finally lets himself trust and get close to. But he knows Eames, an out-and-out sexual being who flirts like it's an Olympic sport. There's no way he could ever settle for a nonsexual relationship with anyone. Arthur considers telling him he's straight and will never be interested, but it's not true. He is interested. Just not in the same way as Eames.

It's hard, though. He wants this. And Arthur is used to getting what he wants.

It maddens him that he can't just order his brain to flip on the switch connected to his libido. Normally Arthur gets along so well with his brain.

He sips his coffee from Eames, pops open his laptop and opens a new text document.


THINGS I COULD FIND ATTRACTIVE ABOUT EAMES.

He has nice eyes.
I like his voice.



That's all he can come up with.

He runs a search for determinants of male physical attractiveness and finds that they're all things he's never paid attention to before. Like Eames' waist or shoulders. He tries to imagine how those could be sexy.

He concludes that he is really bad at this, and that's even more frustrating, because Arthur has never been bad at anything. Not even kissing, which he does find some enjoyment in. (Also because it's a bit of a social experiment for him. He likes to attract people and then note their reactions. He never meant to project this in Eames' direction, though.)

Eames blows him a kiss from across the warehouse when he catches Arthur's eye. Arthur deletes the list and goes to his hotel that night with renewed determination.


+
That night he spends hours painstakingly researching the mechanics of sex. He researches the way he does with work, till he's uncovered every scrap of information to be had and, frankly, knows a lot more than he'd like to. At this point in time he could probably give a passable blowjob, if he had any desire to, which he doesn't.

It's all guesswork, though, because he just can't imagine himself enjoying any of this.

He moves onto porn.

Eames would be so proud.

It's men and women at first, heterosexual sex, throbbing male genitalia and bouncing breasts filling up his screen. It's ... frankly unpleasant. He hopes Eames' penis doesn't look like that.

Ariadne's instant message startles him:

ArchitectStudent: what you up to??

He types back.

Paradox89: Watching porn- trying to figure out the appeal.
ArchitectStudent: ooooh risque!! :D Try this, maybe youll like it better? [link]

He clicks the link. This time it's two women. He blinks, somewhat interested in a scientific way. He's vaguely wondered before how women have sex together. As far as he can gather, it's a lot of rubbing together and moaning.

ArchitectStudent: getting you off at all?
Paradox81: Why? Does this get you off?
ArchitectStudent: ARTHUR!! ARE WE CYBERING??
Paradox81: I really hope not- are we?
ArchitectStudent: thank goodness, I know youre all Eames's!
ArchitectStudent: ooops shouldve thought of that, maybe this will be suited to your tastes ;) [link]

He opens that link too. This time, two men appear on his screen. They're both naked. One is on his knees, gripping the headboard of a bed, and the other is just pushing inside him.

Arthur's breath hitches. It's the most uncomfortable thing he's ever watched in his life. And that includes seeing Cobb cry at Mal's funeral.

He leans away from the computer like it's a horror movie and watches guardedly. The one on top is thrusting vigorously in and out of his partner, who seems to be enjoying it, since he's fully hard and tugging his penis rapidly, and they're both making noises and it's all very ... yeah. Uncomfortable.

The window at the bottom flashes.

ArchitectStudent: you stopped typing!! Enjoying the video are we? ;D
Paradox81: Why are you even watching this smut?
ArchitectStudent: sorry DAD
ArchitectStudent: dont you like it though?

Arthur really doesn't. It bothers him more than the other videos put together. He wonders if it's because he can relate more easily to the man on the bottom, can't help but wonder how it feels, since that's what Eames wants to do to him, after all. It's easy to detach when he's watching women, but this is the situation he's getting into, glaring right here at him on his computer screen, and he so doesn't like it. It's not attractive. Not even psychologically, the way Eames attracts him. It just isn't.

He closes the window. His chat screen pops up instead. Ariadne misinterprets his radio silence.

ArchitectStudent: you could do that with Eames, you know
ArchitectStudent: youd only have to ask him
ArchitectStudent: he REALLY likes you
ArchitectStudent: Arthur, this jobs over in a few days
ArchitectStudent: if you dont make a move, hes going back to Mombasa :(

He buries his face in his hands, partly to give his hands something to do other than blurt out his predicament to her. This is the only relationship he's ever wanted and he'll never be able to have it unless he puts out.

He hates that Eames can make him feel this way, when he's spent so long not caring in the least. He wonders if this is how women feel when their boyfriends pressure them into sex. He hopes, irrationally, that Ariadne never has a boyfriend (although based on the first video, that may not be a problem).

He types back.

Paradox81: I know.
Paradox81: Fuck.
ArchitectStudent: :( are you ok?
Paradox81: I'm fine.
Paradox81: See you tomorrow.

He shuts down the computer.


+
In the morning Eames pounces on his desk as soon as he takes a seat.

“For you, my darling,” he purrs, handing Arthur a sheet of printed paper.

Arthur takes it and reads it over. It's some sort of confirmation Eames has printed out. Confirmation for--

“A cruise?” Arthur says. “You bought tickets for a cruise?”

“A Mediterranean cruise,” says Eames cheerily. “You'll love it. There's a ballroom. Formal dinners. Tuxedos. For seven days. Our room has a balcony.”

“Our room? We're sharing?”

“There's a couch that pulls out,” Eames says, hastily. “Please say yes. I know you'll have fun. And you need a break after this job, you've been working like a dog and I thought to myself, 'How can I make Arthur relax without the aid of chemicals?' And then I thought, well, everybody likes a cruise when they want to relax, the very word is relaxing. So ...” He beams, self-satisfied.

Arthur considers. “What if I say no?”

Eames' face falls slightly, but he recovers, smiling crookedly. “Then I suppose I'll take Ariadne and we'll make a holiday of it. But I would really like you to come, Arthur.”

“You're crazy,” Arthur says, shaking his head, “to spend this much money, on me--”

“No, I'm not,” says Eames, and suddenly he's very serious, his gaze very intent, not teasing at all.

Arthur swallows tightly. He doesn't want to say that he's never been on a cruise or that he loves the Mediterranean. He's pretty sure Eames knows these things, somehow. He doesn't know what to say. He's not made of stone, despite what most people think -- Arthur wants to have someone make him feel loved. Special. And fuck if Eames doesn't make him feel like that right now.

“Okay. Sure,” he says, and huffs out a quick, sheepish laugh. “Yeah. Let's do it.”

Eames positively lights up. He leans down and presses a swift, chaste kiss to the corner of Arthur's mouth. The skin his lips touch seems to tingle when he moves away.

“That makes me feel a lot more confident about asking you to dinner tonight,” he says.

“Dinner?”

“Normally I'd stretch out the wooing process a bit more, but I know as soon as this job's done you'll vanish off the face of the earth till the next one, so I'm hurrying a bit.” Eames smiles again, and it seems to Arthur to be a little ... nervous. “Well? Can I expect the pleasure of your company?”

“I suppose so,” says Arthur, since he'd be a dick to say no now.

The forger beams at him and Arthur feels a little sickly by now.

He doesn't have a sexuality to speak of, but he's not naive. He knows what happens next.

At the end of the day Eames hovers dutifully around the warehouse until Arthur has finally packed up his work and gotten ready to leave, at which point Eames swoops on him and promptly leads him away from the warehouse, away from the job where Arthur knows the script and the roles they're expected to play, to a restaurant where the expectations are all different. He feels self-conscious about everything he does, how he walks, for God's sake; but Eames seems to take no notice. Over dinner he does most of the talking and he just seems actually, genuinely happy to be here with Arthur.

And Arthur isn't naive, so when the meal is over, and Eames is taking care of the bill, he takes a deep breath, gazes vaguely somewhere over Eames' left shoulder and says, “Did you want to come back to my hotel room?”

Eames actually looks startled for about two seconds -- then he grins.


+
Arthur is definitely out of his depth. It's not a nice feeling. He's shot people with the rock-steady hands of a neurosurgeon. Now his fingers slip over the key card to his room and he fumbles to jam it in the slot.

If Eames takes any notice, he's nice enough not to say anything.

The little light on the door flashes green and Arthur grips the door handle, taking another few deep breaths. Stupid how he can be so stone-cold confident at everything he does and be so nervous now, alone with the man he wants.

Wants in such a painfully platonic way. If he gives up now Eames is going to laugh at him. Or be angry with him. Or -- something. Something not good.

Arthur pushes open the door and swallows, saliva tacky in his dry mouth, and says, “So--”

Eames immediately crowds him gently up against the wall and kisses him. Arthur drops the key card and instantly, awkwardly, moves a hand to grip Eames' hip. Eames prises into his mouth smoothly, and, okay, it does feel kind of good. Arthur kisses him back, because kissing he can do. Kissing is the easy part. He relaxes a bit.

Eames' hands deftly work his shirt free of the waistband of his pants, and when his hands slide under Arthur's shirt and up his back, Arthur jerks.

“What?”

“Your hands are cold,” Arthur doesn't quite lie.

Eames grins wickedly and grips Arthur's waist with both hands before kissing him again. Arthur wonders what the hell he's supposed to do with his own hands. Should he be undressing Eames? Or is that somehow poor etiquette? Why didn't any of the websites tell him what he's supposed to do at this part?

He thinks, hazily, that Eames must guess how unsure of himself he is, because the forger manfully takes control and maneuvers Arthur over to the bed, so carefully Arthur scarcely realizes it until he's sitting and Eames is half standing, half kneeling over his lap, his hands making their way down the line of buttons on Arthur's shirt until he can push it down Arthur's shoulders. Eames leans back and touches his stomach, reverent, and Arthur squirms away on reflex.

“Hey.” Eames follows him onto the bed, pushes him down gently and leans over to kiss him. His voice is soft and reproachful. “Don't go running away from me now I've finally got you where I want you.”

So Arthur goes still, just watching as Eames sheds his own shirt. In the back of his mind he wonders wildly if any part of him appreciates Eames' shoulders now. He doesn't think so. They're too broad, looming over him on the bed like a trap.

Then Eames' hands are back, working at his pants now, and Arthur thinks, distantly, God, I'm going to have sex. His heartbeat thunders in his ears.

He jerks involuntarily when Eames slides a hand into his boxers, touching him where no one has ever touched him. Eames pauses.

“Everything okay?”

Arthur nods, feeling queasy. He's not hard, not even a little. He wonders, is Eames? Probably, by now, he surmises, and that's somehow terrifying.

“I just -- need a minute,” he says, because irrationally, he's certain that if he can't get it up, Eames will know his secret. Eames just nods like he understands, strokes him languidly a few times, and Arthur closes his eyes and shuts out everything except where Eames' ministrations feel sort of nice, if alien. Eames kisses him again and it catches him off guard, and he breathes a shuddering gasp into Eames' mouth that could probably be mistaken for pleasure.

Eames stops anyway.

“You're not into this.”

“Yes, I am,” Arthur says stubbornly.

“You know how tense you are right now?”

“I'll relax,” Arthur says. “Keep going.”

Eames gives him a strange look. But he obligingly pulls Arthur's trousers down partway, before Arthur can even protest, and wraps a hand around him again. Arthur shivers, and thank God, his body's responding now; he's managed to will himself into a weak erection. Eames makes a soft sound.

“Christ, Arthur,” he murmurs. “I've wanted you so bloody long.”

His hand goes away, and Arthur looks down in time to see him pulling down his own pants, freeing his cock, and Arthur has to swallow hard, because it's not quite as unpleasant to look at as those in the videos, but God, it's intimidating -- flushed dark, the whole considerable length of it, red at the tip where the foreskin's slid back a bit. And all Arthur can think, bleakly, is that it will never fit inside him.

And that's when Eames does something unprecedented. His hand returns to Arthur's prick, and he starts to slide back down the bed to hover over his waist, and leans down, and as soon as Arthur figures out his intention he jerks away like he's been electrocuted, nearly kneeing Eames in the chin.

“Stop, stop,” he pleads, and he's done, just like that, erection killed. “I can't, Eames, I can't have sex with you, I'm sorry--”

“Why not?” says Eames, sitting back and looking understandably blindsided. Arthur tugs his pants up, flushing.

“Because I'm not attracted to you,” he blurts out without thinking.

“What, you're straight?”

“No, I mean -- I mean I'm not attracted to anyone. I just can't have sex, Eames, the thought, God--” This is probably the most embarrassing moment of his life. “I'm sorry,” he says, again. “Fuck, I thought I could do this, but I really can't. It's too much.”

Eames has pulled his own pants up, and is looking bewildered. “Why on earth didn't you ever just tell me you're asexual?” he asks.

“I'm not a fucking amoeba,” Arthur snaps, and inexplicably, Eames chuckles.

“I know you aren't, darling. I know what asexual means. You should have told me. I wouldn't have pushed you, you know.”

“I thought ... I thought you'd lose interest,” Arthur says, starting to feel equally bewildered. “I mean ... you can't seriously be telling me you'd be interested in having a relationship with no sex.”

“Well, I don't know,” says Eames. “We'll have to talk about it. I don't really understand asexuality, Arthur, but it's not like I'd drop you by the wayside just for that. I've been after you for years.” He reaches over, grazes Arthur's knee with his fingers, lightly. “Some asexuals have relationships. If they can make it work, maybe we can too, yeah?”

Arthur takes all this in numbly, one thing sticking out prominently: Eames knows what he is. Eames knows.

“I thought I was some kind of freak of nature,” he admits, sheepish now.

Eames chuckles again. “All that time you spend with your laptop, don't you ever browse the Internet? There are lots of people like you.”

Arthur's so relieved he's almost trembling. It had seemed an impossibility, before: being himself, and having a relationship with Eames. He can't believe he could have both.

“I like you,” he says, “and I want a relationship. And I'm not completely -- I mean, I like kissing you--”

“Shush,” Eames says, stroking his knee again, and it's somehow a very platonic gesture, soothing. “We'll figure it out.”


+
Eames sleeps over and in the morning, they make a list.

“I know how you like lists,” Eames says, pressing a kiss to Arthur's temple and sliding the pad of legal paper and pen over to him.

There's a yes column and a no column and a maybe column. They go over it together until they have a list under each.


YES:
  • Kissing.
  • Sleeping in the same bed.
  • Touching (casual/intimate).
  • Handjobs (giving).
  • Massages.


  • NO:
  • SEX (penetrative, oral, etc).
  • Handjobs (receiving).
  • Blowjobs (receiving).
  • Touching (sexual).
  • Frottage.



  • Underneath “maybe”, after a minute's consideration, he writes “blowjobs (giving)”. Eames pretends not to look thrilled.

    “It's a maybe,” Arthur points out warningly.

    “I know, I know,” says Eames, but he's grinning, and Arthur thinks maybe it won't be such a sacrifice if he can make Eames grin like that more often.

    But then Eames is examining the list carefully again, and he tilts it like it will reveal something new when observed at a different angle, and he says, a little plaintively: “Are you certain you'll never want to try sex with me? Even knowing it'll probably feel good?”

    “Eames,” says Arthur. “Would you ask Cobb the same thing? Knowing he's straight?”

    Eames looks at once appropriately chagrined. “No.”

    “Lists aren't concrete,” says Arthur. “But I don't want you to be with me because you're holding out for -- real sex. Because that might never happen, Eames, and to be honest, it probably won't ...”

    He stops, because Eames has raised a finger to his lips. “I know.”

    “And -- you still want this?” Arthur says, feeling an almost overwhelming sense of bewilderment again.

    Eames smiles. “Yes.”

    He leans down and kisses Arthur's temple again, humming softly in a way that makes Arthur think of a contented purring cat.

    “I like you just as you are, with or without sex,” he murmurs into Arthur's hair. “We'll make it work.”

    He entwines his fingers with Arthur's. Arthur believes him.




    A/N: Public Service Announcement time! The main theme I had in mind while writing this fic was that asexuality can be just as difficult as anything else that falls outside the "norm" to come to terms with -- as an ace myself I did base some of the emotions here on my own experience, but of course, your mileage may vary. Here is a link to AVEN if you're interested to learn more!
     
     
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    ( 89 comments — Leave a comment )
    superhero baseball.: your condescension is much appreciated.acidpop25 on November 24th, 2010 03:00 am (UTC)
    Awwww, SIGH, EAMES. ♥ This is such a touching, lovely story. Arthur is so very Arthur, and his insecurity and longing just made me ache. Fandom needs more ace fic.

    Rereading forever.
    Whiskywhiskyrunner on November 24th, 2010 03:14 am (UTC)
    Fandom needs more ace fic.

    I agree!!

    Thanks for reading <33
    little baby bird cheep cheepplatina on November 24th, 2010 03:06 am (UTC)
    I loved this ♥, especially being able to identify with Arthur's insecurities so well. And I love your Eames for being so accepting and for wanting to make this work and for just being able to take Arthur as he is. Thank you for writing this.
    Whiskywhiskyrunner on November 24th, 2010 03:15 am (UTC)
    Haha, I need an Eames :'|

    Thanks very much <33
    just_a_boyjust_a_boy on November 24th, 2010 03:11 am (UTC)
    I'm ace myself, and reading this brilliant piece of writing felt like looking into a mirror.

    Thank you so much for this story.
    Whiskywhiskyrunner on November 24th, 2010 03:15 am (UTC)
    Thank you for reading!
    (Deleted comment)
    Whiskywhiskyrunner on November 24th, 2010 03:20 am (UTC)
    I'm surprised how many aces are into slash fiction! But I know in my case I cannot read het because being able to project myself onto the female makes me waay too uncomfortable, haha.

    Thanks for reading <3
    midnite_visionmidnite_vision on November 24th, 2010 03:19 am (UTC)
    There are a lot of areas of sexuality, or lack thereof, that aren't explored in fan fiction. But I suppose that's mostly because people don't feel they understand the variations enough to try writing about them (or they just don't know about the variations). I think you did a wonderful job conveying how Arthur feels. I'm glad he has a shot at happiness with Eames. :)
    Whiskywhiskyrunner on November 24th, 2010 03:20 am (UTC)
    Yeah, I definitely wouldn't have attempted this if I weren't asexual myself xD Thanks for reading <3
    (no subject) - thequetxalcoatl on March 10th, 2011 08:59 am (UTC) (Expand)
    A sexy, fun bitch you just bought you a piñata!loverly on November 24th, 2010 03:46 am (UTC)
    I think the first Inception fic I read was about asexual!Arthur, that and this fic just cements the fact in my head that Eames is the best ever ♥ And oh haha Ariadne is trying to be helpful with her porn collection, bless. Sounds like something I would do, tbh :[
    Whiskywhiskyrunner on November 26th, 2010 04:04 am (UTC)
    Everyone needs an Ariadne. And an Eames. xD Thanks for reading <3
    kii: INCEPTION :: Arthur :: glancekiyala on November 24th, 2010 04:14 am (UTC)
    YES. Thanks for writing this. I loved it!
    Whiskywhiskyrunner on November 26th, 2010 04:05 am (UTC)
    :D Thanks for reading it!
    sarahcrimson_adder on November 24th, 2010 04:20 am (UTC)
    Very lovely. :D I love how Arthur's asexuality fits so easily in with what I already think of as his regular personality, you integrated it really well.

    Also Eames. \♥/ Too sweet.
    Whiskywhiskyrunner on November 26th, 2010 04:06 am (UTC)
    Haha, I always tend to think of Arthur as being at least demisexual (ie. only attracted to Eames) anyway, and I think it shows in at least a few of my fics xD Thanks for reading!
    Becca~*twilights_blue on November 24th, 2010 04:27 am (UTC)
    Holy shit, this really hit home. I'm an ace, but didn't figure it out until after my first relationship (which was rather rocky for several reasons, one being that my girlfriend thought I was "broken" because I didn't want sex). The thoughts that Arthur has through most of this fic match the same thoughts that have crossed my mind several times before. So yeah, you definitely scored with the emotions and everything. Excellent writing. :3
    Whiskywhiskyrunner on November 26th, 2010 04:07 am (UTC)
    Thanks so much! Gotta say, I've never felt so connected to other aces as I do now, heh xD
    delilah_lilithdelilah_lilith on November 24th, 2010 04:34 am (UTC)
    Very cute. Poor Arthur. Good thing he has Eames.
    Whiskywhiskyrunner on November 26th, 2010 04:07 am (UTC)
    Thanks for reading!
    陌路人: fieldmoluren on November 24th, 2010 05:49 am (UTC)
    Thanks so much for writing/sharing this. Extremely well done!
    Whiskywhiskyrunner on November 26th, 2010 04:07 am (UTC)
    Thank you! :D
    chibifukurouchibifukurou on November 24th, 2010 07:03 am (UTC)
    Can I just say that you read my mind. I was just thinking that I somebody needed to right an ace!Arthur story and here it is.

    This is just lovely and I love how you wrote Arthur and Eames' courtship. It's all very sweet and romantic in a way I truly enjoy.
    Whiskywhiskyrunner on November 26th, 2010 04:08 am (UTC)
    I like to think that Eames is a hopeless romantic when it comes to Arthur :D Thanks for reading!
    clair3clair3 on November 24th, 2010 08:38 am (UTC)
    this is brilliant glad your wrote it!
    Whiskywhiskyrunner on November 26th, 2010 04:08 am (UTC)
    Thank you!
    Diana: eva.dreamerthe_grynne on November 24th, 2010 08:57 am (UTC)
    Arthur wonders when the hell it became more socially acceptable to be gay than to have no sexuality at all.

    Oh my god. THIS. I think this every time someone tries to convince me that I just haven't "done it" enough times, or with the right person.

    I've yet to meet anyone who adjusts so quickly to the idea of asexuality as Eames here, but I do love asexual!Arthur.
    Whiskywhiskyrunner on November 24th, 2010 01:36 pm (UTC)
    Ironically, it was my bisexual, polyamorous friend who accepted my asexuality completely as soon as it came up xD But it's because she's already part of an open-minded community, and has been exposed to so many different kinds of sexualities, and that's roughly how I pictured Eames here. In terms of people he's a little more worldly than Arthur, and he's probably been exposed to asexuality before.

    Anyway, thanks for reading <3
    theheartsfriendtheheartsfriend on November 24th, 2010 09:13 am (UTC)
    This hit so many of my personal buttons. I'm an ace as well, but it took me years to stop feeling guilty about not wanting a sexual relationship. It was so easy to identify with your Arthur OMG you have no idea. You portrayed his insecurity so perfectly.

    I can't even begin to thank you enough for this! ♥
    Whiskywhiskyrunner on November 26th, 2010 04:12 am (UTC)
    Thank you for reading! <3 Glad you were able to connect, makes me feel less insecure about myself xD
    ❝ H A K U ❞: ]/[ some kind of loyalclimb on November 24th, 2010 10:30 am (UTC)
    There's a knowing caliber of decency your Eames exerts here. It's not overt despite him being to-the-point, and it's not what I would call lighthearted either. It feels like the kind of committed kindness that a window of pursuit that long warrants and I don't mean that in a way that would sell the emotion short, just that one has to be kind (I think, I imagine) to keep at it as such. I really like that as giving as he seems there also feels to be a weight to him. I don't know I'm rambling. But it felt good and contained and solid and a number of other words that make a piece resonate as whole.

    Arthur was wonderful too :/ though if I get on that I'll be here rattling your eyes off until Doomsday about what I liked, so I'll leave it at that.

    Thanks for sharing -- the angle as well as the writing.
    ❝ H A K U ❞: ]/[ some kind of pointclimb on November 24th, 2010 10:31 am (UTC)
    SOMEHOW I forgot to mention that Ariadne's cameo of sorts made me unnecessarily, unexpectedly happy. It was a glance but it was effective and lkfjldjflddflkj so.

    THAT TOO* basically!
    (no subject) - whiskyrunner on November 26th, 2010 04:15 am (UTC) (Expand)
    (Deleted comment)
    Whiskywhiskyrunner on November 26th, 2010 04:16 am (UTC)
    You're welcome, and thanks! :D
    [sara] a nostalgic color: inception ae dream biggerosaraba on November 24th, 2010 03:23 pm (UTC)
    I loved this; I'm so glad you filled that prompt!

    In particular, I was really pleased with how open-minded and accepting Eames was of Arthur's asexuality and yet how, the next morning -- while still being accepting of it -- he still had questions and needed clarification in order to... I guess, give it the right shape in his own head? This, maybe, is the difference between sympathy and empathy?

    In any case, it felt so real, and I appreciated the depiction of it that way.

    <333!
    Whiskywhiskyrunner on November 26th, 2010 04:17 am (UTC)
    :D Thank you!
    Profiterole: Inception - Eames Arthur and Girl!Eames_profiterole_ on November 24th, 2010 07:37 pm (UTC)
    That was such a beautiful fic. ♥

    Ariadne trying to help was a lot of fun. :-)
    Whiskywhiskyrunner on November 26th, 2010 04:17 am (UTC)
    Haha, thank you :D
    connie_sunny on November 24th, 2010 09:35 pm (UTC)

    "... Or is that somehow poor etiquette? Why didn't any of the websites tell him what he's supposed to do at this part?"
    This story is gorgeous, and heartbreaking and lovely all at once!!!
    I love the way you describe Arthur's insecurities, and the research, haha, that's so like (I imagine) him, always being prepared:)

    Very interesting and lovely fic, Eames is the perfect gentleman! ^_^

    Fantastic piece of writing as always! Mooore fics!!! Yes? ^^
    Whiskywhiskyrunner on November 26th, 2010 04:17 am (UTC)
    Yes :D Thank you!
    Beff bEFFbethycool on November 24th, 2010 10:28 pm (UTC)
    Aww I loved romantic Eames!
    And the little bit of sexy time ;D
    Arthur's so cute when he's nervous :D
    Whiskywhiskyrunner on November 26th, 2010 04:18 am (UTC)
    Arthur's so cute always <3 Thanks for reading!
    jaxinthebox: Textless: I Had The Worldjaxinthebox on November 24th, 2010 11:14 pm (UTC)
    Ahh!
    There so needs to be more ace fiction!
    I am so endlessly pleased by this. Thank you!
    Whiskywhiskyrunner on November 26th, 2010 04:18 am (UTC)
    Thanks for reading :D And yes, moar ace fiction!
    synonym spice!fiercynn on November 24th, 2010 11:41 pm (UTC)
    Oh, I love your Arthur here so much! And Eames of course, trying his best and still having questions, but willing to keep on asking and learning and loving Arthur. ♥
    Whiskywhiskyrunner on November 26th, 2010 04:20 am (UTC)
    Trying his best, haha -- such a perfect description of Eames <3 Thanks for reading :)
    Parallel Monsoonvillis on November 25th, 2010 02:04 am (UTC)
    As a 30 year old asexual virgin, thank you for writing a fic on this subject matter that doesn't end with the asexual character changing their mind.

    Lovely writing, and very honest...I liked that Eames still tried to push a little, even when he was trying to be understanding. It is so hard for "normal" people to understand a total lack of desire to engage in sex.

    Anyway, thank you so much for writing this. It's always nice to see a part of yourself reflected in the fictional world.
    Whiskywhiskyrunner on November 26th, 2010 04:26 am (UTC)
    Thank you very much :) I knew I didn't want Eames to be like, "no sex, okey-dokey!" when in reality it'd be more like "NO SEX EVER??" In the end I wanted them to compromise without changing who they are; I think Eames would be pushier if he wasn't allowed to touch at all. Thanks for reading <3
    Ms. Rachelsoundproofd on November 25th, 2010 12:49 pm (UTC)
    Ah, this is so positively lovely. They both seem so very much like themselves and just... arrgh. I love it. ♥

    This also makes me want to cry in pure joy that somebody actually seems to understand asexuality isn't about finding the right tail. I'm homosexual myself, but have a few friends that have gone through the stigma and push and overall uncomfortable feelings of not really wanting anyone in a world that is so sex-driven. Seriously. I really must thank you for that.
    Whiskywhiskyrunner on November 26th, 2010 04:27 am (UTC)
    Aces need more friends like you around <3 Thank you.
    ( 89 comments — Leave a comment )
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