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11 March 2011 @ 04:48 pm
Will you put my hands away, will you be my man  
Title: Will you put my hands away, will you be my man
Fandom: Inception
Disclaimer: The movie Inception does not belong to me and I am making no money from this story, just a good-ole fanwork!
Pairing/Characters: Arthur/Eames; mentions of Dom and Ariadne.
Word Count: 3,030
Rating: PG-13
Summary: No, you don’t hate him as everyone thinks. Yes, his clothes hurt your eyes and he smiles sometimes too wide and he looks at you just once too often in every day. You like that he’s smart and you’re less annoyed, more charmed. But you can’t be charmed; you won’t be charmed, not by him. But when he says your name you feel something even though you don’t want to.
Author notes: I randomly started writing this stream of conciousness, second person in a meeting at work. From there is just flowed out in this style I don't usually do but I rather like how it turned out! (title is from an Interpol song)

You start with annoyance.

“Pleasure to meet you, Arthur, I am Eames.”

No, you don’t hate him as everyone thinks. Yes, his clothes hurt your eyes and he smiles sometimes too wide and he looks at you just once too often in every day. His hair is short, he always has stubble, he’s broad, looks strong, and once you caught a flash of ink on skin. He comes off brash and arrogant but also strangely kind, holding doors, carrying boxes, casing the building, following the mark.

He does his job.

“If we use the wife we have the problem of the dual feeling, the love and the confinement. His daughter he doesn’t see as a burden; she’s all daddy’s girl, better choice.”

Eames is smart, very smart. You know a degree hides somewhere in the folds of his charm but you won’t dare ask him.

‘Where did you attend university?’

Maybe you’ll quietly rip through firewalls and turn over some rocks yourself to find that psychology degree. God forbid he turns out to have a doctorate or something else terribly civilized.

“Two levels down and I can impersonate the partner; he has a lovely wrist flick that I have to try.”

You like that he’s smart and you’re less annoyed, more charmed. But you can’t be charmed; you won’t be charmed, not by him. You lead by action, you move by careful thought and planning. You live your life with regimented technique. You don’t do charm, not even his, not even those lips or those eyes.

He always has something to say, words like darling begin to slip off his tongue around you and you think… you think maybe you want to punch him just a little. Or maybe you want to kiss him. Fuck. Neither, you want to do neither; he’s just the forger, a thief, just a coworker, just Eames.


But when he says your name you feel something even though you don’t want to.

One level dreams. You walk the busy metropolitan street together, gun in your holster hidden away just in case, a notepad in his hand inside his newspaper. You case the mark together sitting at a coffee shop two tables down and just a bit behind that dying plant. He takes his coffee with cream and no sugar. You remember this.

Next time you order his coffee for him absently. He smiles and why did you do that?

Two level dreams. When you hit the ground running, Dom still tight on the mark somewhere far back, Eames hits right beside you. When you shoot over his shoulder he’s firing over yours. And you make eye contact and he smiles and you smile. So many smiles and maybe his smile isn’t too wide, maybe it’s just right, maybe you like it. Projections fall on both sides, never stood a chance and he says,

“What a team we make, my dear.”

You don’t tell him not to call you dear. You should. You should say ‘don’t call me that.’ It’s simple but maybe it’s not so simple anymore.

Three level – no, no three level dreams, back to one level. He hands you a file full of photos, notes from following the husband, his forge; things like glasses prescription, tie color, muffin choices, a finger wag, shoe size.

“You learned all of this?” You gape at him. “There are twenty pages here!”

He smiles and shrugs. “Just because you’re the point man does not mean I don’t research too.”

He smiles again and you feel it creeping at the corner of your mouth. You can’t not smile back and he mouths ‘darling’ at you. You want that to be your name. You want him to always say ‘darling, darling,’ to call you ‘Darling Arthur.’ It’s absurd but maybe it’s not.

So – so maybe it turns out he’s something more and maybe you are too.

You dream. You keep dreaming together.

“The maze is three levels deep and Arthur will take point.” Dom instructs to you all in a circle. “Eames will keep the mark distracted as the boyfriend while we go for the safe.”

You see him in many forms; you see him with blond hair and ankle boots, with a goatee and horn rim glasses; you see him with perfect teeth and a purple dress, with painted nails and pink cheeks, with tight jeans and wide hips, with only five feet and deep chocolate eyes; you see him with suits and scarves and t-shirts and pencil skirts and military jackets. You see him in so many faces.

Somewhere along the jobs, along the hallways and streets and broken coffee cups and turning corners, somewhere you miss his stubble, his eyes, his lips, his hands, his form. You miss Eames when you see him as someone else.

It starts to scare you.

“Arthur, would you like…” He starts talking to you, talking, not charming.

Then the job is over and his doesn’t finish his sentences. He stops saying ‘darling’ and – damn your iron will – but you miss it.

“Arthur, I… Arthur, you and I…”

Then you start to see. You see he’s scared too.

Fuck it.

“Darling.” Then he touches you and he wins the race. “Haven’t we run enough?”

So, you fall with him, fall for him and he’s right beside you, lips on your cheek, hands on your hips, your fingers crumpling his shirt.

“Shut up,” you say, “I think we’ve talked enough.”

He hums against you, he holds you, he kisses you and you think that change is good and for once you have no plan. Fuck plans. You don’t need a plan with hands like these.

You begin.

You think, what’s so wrong with restaurants? Steak or cheese soufflé? Or is that too classy for his temperament? Beer, fish and chips, perfectly English. Anything, just a dinner, a night out with shoes off under the table and his sock climbing up your leg. Doesn’t hurt to try sixteen again.

“Two pints is just an appetizer, love.”

Try a movie, then. Too normal? Too boring when you can create dreams? Maybe 2D isn’t so bad. Following a plot line, twists and turns, guess the end; his fingers creep over yours, playing piano on your fingernails.

“Two to one, the blond gets it and they let the brunette live.”

His lips by your ear whispering, neither of you caring really what he says because it’s about the touch, the breath, any reason to ease closer.

But no. You don’t do that. You don’t do movies, neither of you. Restaurants maybe, maybe sometimes – maybe white table cloths with three forks, crystal glasses, and jackets required.

Or not.

Dreams. You do dreams.

You dream him in blue. You dream his 1970s inspired spots, dull orange, baby-puke green, petal pink, metallic silver. His smile sparkles and his eyes track, his eyes chase – his eyes are perfect.

“Just look at me,” you say.

“Do I have to pick one part? Hmm, lovely arse.”

“Just look at me.”

“Your lips?”

You smile.

“Slicked back perfect hair?”

You laugh. “Eames…”

“Your eyes then.”

Your eyes.” You touch his face, turn his head, thumb his lips. “Look at me.”

And he looks at you.

He dreams you. He dreams you one inch taller, hair dark, endless racks of suits, spectrum black through brown, splash of olive green.

He always laughs, says, “Balance, pet, you have to wear something dark when I wear pink.”

“Which is always,” you fire back.

You dream for him.

You dream Olympic-sized swimming pools twelve feet deep and five diving boards, guarded by high granite walls. You give him ten cocktails to choose from, no beer this round. Noon sun for six hours. You tan him like leather and watch yourself watch him in his sunglasses. You pitch the temperature just right at 74 degrees Fahrenheit (23.3333 degrees Celsius), June weather in dream-land.

“You could skip the bathing suit,” he teases.

You dream London. A trip home without the relatives. Busy streets, double-decker buses, unused police boxes.

“What? Taking your cues from Doctor Who, Arthur?”

The bite of the cold of England no matter the season, his accent making yours the odd one out in the homeland. Big Ben towering over parliament and maybe you’ll get him into Buckingham palace, ornamental architecture and ballrooms with high ceilings. Screw the queen.

“It’s yours for the night,” you tell him, “You’re the king of England.”

He just laughs and you love to make him laugh.

You dream him casinos, garish lights, too many chandeliers, clashing patterned carpets with blue diamonds, mustard stripes, maroon circles inside red circles inside maroon circles. You flash lights, bright kiosks, chuckling dealers, loaded dies, so he always wins.

“But that does ruin the point, Arthur.”

Mazes like the Bellagio or the Mirage like Las Vegas, like Atlantic City, like Monte Carlo but paths which crisscross to always lead him back to you.

You dream him hotel rooms. You dream the both of you hotel rooms.

Five-star with down comforters, three pillows a person on a queen sized bed, no headboard. Or maybe satin? Or maybe checkered sheets? Or a four-poster bed with a mirror on top?

You lie on silk, king sized bed with one long rectangle pillow and you wait for his hands to slide across your chest, for his lips to trace your jaw and blot out any semblance of reality.

“I couldn’t dream it better.” He smirks and watches you.

You will him to move, to move toward you but dreamers don’t change at your will.

“Come here,” you command instead, “now.”

His hands are artist hands; they move with grace. He maps you with touch, finger tips circling your knee and palm over your ass and lips cataloging each crest of muscle as he slips down and up, up and down. You kiss him and he kisses you and all you think is, ‘touch me.’

You dream – you dream a job.

“What the hell!” you shout.

You chase after him just two steps behind as projection bullets destroy architecture, rip wall paper.

“Here, here!” He pulls your lapel and you don’t care, you don’t care, you run. “Stairs!”

You run and you shoot, two more down. Militarized projections with guns bigger than yours. How did that happen?

“Don’t stop!” you shout.

And where is Dom? And fuck all if you told Dom this, you told him the mark had to be trained and why are your clients always corporate? You’re starting to hate hotels and their lay outs and Eames trips but you regroup and you don’t stop.

“Next floor!” he screams. “Ariadne made an extra – Christ!”

A bullet takes him down, blood staining his patterned shirt into a solid. Ruby red, black red and it’s a chest wound to give him just a bit of time for gasping, to feel real pain in the mind.

“Eames! No, fucking –”

You shoot the four projections in the stairwell with you like its easy target practice, barely seeing, barely trying – bang bang bang bang! He just gasps below you and it’s a sound like tearing, like hollow bubbling pain.

“Go on, I’ll hold them… two minutes.”

“No, I’ll –” gun up but he grasps your hand.

“You need the time; the safe is still four floors up.”

“I’m not leaving you to bleed!”

He pulls you down, kisses you. He always knows how to kiss you, when to push and bite and when to touch you, coax you, pull your heart up to your throat. His fingers curl over yours, touch your hair and still you.

“I’ll be fine, I’ll die soon.” You hear the pain in his voice and he looks at you – those eyes – really looks at you. “But I can buy you time before that.”

“No…” you try.

“Just bloody go!”

You run on up the stairs, hear gunshots behind you. Focus clicks in, point-man coat on, and to the job, the secrets to learn – not the man left behind.

You love him. But you hate him, hate his changing eyes, hate his English heroics, hate him for how much you love him. His blood on your lips.

You dream something quiet. You dream yourself a room. A room alone. You dream a chair and a fire, cozy like story book Christmas nights. You dream one window with no world outside. You dream a table, coffee cup in the center, empty picture frames on the walls. The chair feels comfortable but makes you sit up straight so you can’t sleep twice. Your hand lies on the table, fingers just far enough from the cup. The room’s furnishing come only in browns, caramel wood and muddy carpet.

This room holds only you and your thoughts. This room holds you and your thoughts and all of him. Your thoughts and how you didn’t realize how far down the levels went until you fell in love. You didn’t realize you’d fallen into your own limbo and it is him.

“I can’t.”

You can’t love him like this. It could hurt you both. And it’s not just this dream, not just this job, not any time either of you take bullets or get hurt or maimed or mauled. It’s that you forgot, you forgot the job when your eyes only saw him.

Maybe you run. Maybe you hide. Maybe you leave him. Maybe you curse him, hate him, tell him to fuck off, ‘it’s over!’

“We can’t do this anymore.”

“What?” The smile would fade from his face and the serious forger eyes, the ‘to the job’ look would squeeze in.

“You are a liability.”


“I can’t do this anymore. You and I. I just can’t.”

“Stop it, Arthur, you don’t mean it.”

“Shut up, Eames.” You wouldn’t look at him. “I can’t be with you. It could hurt both of us, it’s too…”

You wouldn’t say ‘it’s too strong, I love you too much.’


“I don’t love you!”

He’d be cold, he’d say, “You’re a fucking coward.”

Or maybe you don’t do any of these things.

No, not maybe – you don’t. You don’t do it.

Maybe you suck it up. Maybe you realize that this is just another thing to manage. Maybe you’re an adult, maybe you’re smart. Maybe you realize that life relies on balance like Eames always said, learn to balance love and work and life, learning to keep what makes you happy and protect it, damn the rest of the world.

You stay.

You buy an apartment.

“Do you like curtains or blinds?” he asks.

“I would say I’d let you decorate but that would just be a disaster.”

You try metal counter tops, marble counter tops, wood fixtures, IKEA, Pottery Barn. You go shopping together, pick out towels, domesticate.

“We are never getting a cat.” You point a finger. “Never.”

“I did not say a thing about cats.”

“No sneaking one in just to annoy me.”

He smiles, that smile, that charm straight from the first time. “I prefer dogs anyway, dear, you know.”

“No dog either.”

“Why do you hate fun, Arthur?”

“Pets are not fun; they’re work.”

The feeling, the place, almost scares you. But you call it home and so does he.

You dream. You dream a courtyard where the mark drinks his tea. You dream office buildings with elevators going up thirty floors. You dream the Australian outback, a ramshackle hut and bones. You dream planes, three rows and two isles with sleeping passengers on their way to France. You dream him sitting in the front row at the theater, glasses on his face and rose red lips. You dream his hand coasting down your back as you run through an open street when the dream cracks.

You dream you smile. But you don’t just dream that, you do it. You smile for him, you laugh for him.

“I love you.”

Who says it? Is it you? It’s him. It’s both of you.

“I love you.”

He lies beside you in bed, in your bed. His head on the pillow always looks like heaven, like Eden, like Elysian Fields. His eyes are half asleep but he still smiles at you. The sheets cover both your legs, your hips, creeping up your chests. You want to push it back, curve your hand over the jut of bone and down his leg. You want to map him out as a sea, your hands the water over his ocean floor.


His voice always sounds soft when he’s thinking the word ‘love,’ when he’s thinking your name.

Stubble still peppers his chin, his eyes still look gorgeous, his lips still kiss with perfection. You slide across your pillow and kiss him. You kiss him awake. You widen his eyes, wake him up with your kisses.

You trace the lines of his tattoos with one finger tip. You kiss his chin and dance a cha-cha on his chest. You write your name with invisible ink from your finger nail over his heart. You press down a stamp, a claim and he does not stop you.

“Good morning,” you say.

Restaurants and hotel rooms. No movies but maybe DVDs, curled together on the couch like normal people’s Saturday nights. You play the piano for him, Frank Sinatra “Fly me to the Moon” and he draws you the Thames flowing through Victorian London. He cooks dinner, baked Ziti with glazed Brussels sprouts and you take his hands to dance.

Dreams and floors and deserted streets and twisting mazes and even sometimes broken glass or crumbling stone. Gun shots and blood and too many dream hours fitting into less minutes of your shared past.

Maybe he did win you with his charm. Maybe he was a bit annoying and English and far too beautiful. Maybe you won him with your earned smiles and smart suits. Maybe you loved him from the start.

“Good morning, darling.”

But his head lies beside yours. His pillow is your pillow and he kisses you, slow and deep and possessive and it says, ‘I love you.’

You stay.

It started, you started and you keep on running straight through. You stay, stay, stay.
(Deleted comment)
Becca the Wonder Penguin: Inception // Arthursunnyrea on March 12th, 2011 01:44 pm (UTC)
Thank you so much! I'm glad it worked for you despite the oddities! And wow "new standard." *blush*
D: eamesepithalamium on March 12th, 2011 03:12 am (UTC)
The language, dear god, the language! As chara_ter said, I usually stop reading at the use of the second person POV, but the language pulls you in from the moment you wrote that first line as surely as Eames's certain brand of charm pulled Arthur in. This was romantic, bittersweet, and perfect. Thanks for sharing!
Becca the Wonder Penguin: Inception // Eamessunnyrea on March 12th, 2011 01:43 pm (UTC)
I can't ask for a better reaction than "The language, dear god, the language!" Thank you so much!
Ebil Oneebilgatoloco on March 12th, 2011 06:25 am (UTC)
I really liked this =]
Good job
osaki_nana_707osaki_nana_707 on March 12th, 2011 07:04 am (UTC)
I'm not usually a fan of second-person POV. It always makes me thing "THIS STORY IS ABOUT MEEEEEE" too much, but you surprisingly pulled it off very well in this piece. You've done a really good job here, and I'm glad I took the time to read it.
Lore: Inception - Dream Bigger Darlinganimelore on March 12th, 2011 10:10 pm (UTC)

So much love for this!
Becca the Wonder Penguin: Inception // Arthursunnyrea on March 13th, 2011 06:40 pm (UTC)
Why thank you darling! (You're on a plane right now!)
clair3clair3 on March 13th, 2011 07:58 am (UTC)
(Deleted comment)
Ralna Malfoy: Tom Hardy: breathtakingralnamalfoy on March 15th, 2011 08:54 am (UTC)

Beautiful. Lovely pacing and the pov fits perfectly.

No idea why, but I'm crying right now ~.~
Becca the Wonder Penguin: Inception // Eamessunnyrea on March 15th, 2011 12:51 pm (UTC)
*gives you a tissue* So sorry to make you cry, dear.
Ralna Malfoy: Tom Hardy: smileralnamalfoy on March 19th, 2011 02:59 pm (UTC)
Don't be ^^; Sometimes you need to cry, you know?! It's all better now ^^;
Ran: thumps up - orlandodark_oracle_ran on March 15th, 2011 04:05 pm (UTC)
This was my first second-person story. It was a bit confusing at first but I really liked it. :) I never thought of that pairing while I was watching Inception but know I think it's a great idea to pair them. Thank you for that great piece of fanfiction. :)
littlenotebooklittlenotebook on March 15th, 2011 04:23 pm (UTC)
Well, I'm excited to be your first second-person!
Ran: smile jenniferdark_oracle_ran on March 15th, 2011 04:32 pm (UTC)
You'll always have a special place in my thoughts for being my first second-person. ;)