Title: Out of the Dark

LJ: http://kirathaune.livejournal.com/  
Character(s)/Pairing(s): Sanzo/Goku
Rating/Warning: PG-13, mild spoilers for Reload 10
Summary: Goku did some growing up while Sanzo wasn't looking... or maybe Sanzo hadn't wanted to look. 
Disclaimers: This is just for fun, no profit made.
Notes: This is a very belated birthday gift for rroselavy. As 3/9 approached, I thought, "Ooh! It can be both Happy Birthday and Happy 39/93 Day!" Rrose, I hope you enjoy it. 2,400 words.

Sanzo threw another log on the fire, poked it a bit and lit a cigarette. They were at least a day away from the nearest town and he had first watch, which Hakkai had insisted on so that he would get the most uninterrupted sleep. It was a little over a week since their encounter with Ukoku on the mountaintop, and they were getting used to being an intact group again.

Mostly intact, anyway. The kappa was still only speaking to him when necessary, and when it was necessary his words were laced with sarcasm and resentment. Hakkai's smiles were of the polite, oh-I-am-not-pleased-with-you-at-all variety, although his hands had stayed gentle when they healed Sanzo's myriad cuts, breaks and bruises. The monkey, however, bounced and laughed and yammered away as if Sanzo had never been apart from them for several weeks.

Of the three, Sanzo had expected Goku to be the one angry with him for leaving them to travel with Hazel. But it hadn't quite played out that way. Gojyo had been the angry, unforgiving one, which Sanzo found interesting since the kappa had left them to try and rescue those kids from Kami-sama. Hakkai had the air of a teacher that was disappointed with your test results – although Sanzo suspected that the healer had a good idea of why he had left. Hakkai didn't miss much.

But Goku seemed genuinely happy to have him back with them, and Sanzo took it at face value.

Almost as if his thoughts had summoned Goku, the teen stumbled out of their tent and headed off to take care of nature's call. Sanzo heard splashing as Goku washed up, then the monkey returned to their small campsite. Instead of crawling back into the tent, however, Goku shuffled over and plopped down on the large log where Sanzo was sitting.

"Hi, Sanzo." Goku yawned, a face-cracking affair that afforded Sanzo a view of nearly every tooth in the monkey's mouth. He then stretched, which caused his t-shirt to ride up and display an expanse of taut golden stomach.

Sanzo quickly looked away and concentrated on his cigarette. "You're up too soon. Your turn at watch isn't for another half hour."

Goku rubbed the sleep out of his eyes. "Ugh. I woke up an' had ta pee, an' I figured there wasn't any point in goin' back ta sleep. You can go ta bed now if you want."

"Tch. You're useless right now. I'll finish my watch while you finish waking up."

"Okay." Another toothy yawn, and then Goku moved on to cracking his knuckles while he watched the dancing flames of the fire. Sanzo lit another cigarette and a few minutes passed in a companionable silence, a silence Sanzo knew would not last for long. In fact, any second now…

"Hey, Sanzo… I betcha I know why Gojyo's still pissed at you."

Like clockwork. "And you think I give a flying fuck about the kappa?"

Goku grinned. "I betcha he's pissed cuz we didn't kick the shit out of you like we did ta him after we found him at Kami-sama's castle."

Sanzo's lip curled in a sneer. "Idiot kappa. He doesn't understand anything." Suddenly Sanzo's contempt turned inward. "And besides, we all know Ukoku took care of that job for you three."

Goku's grin faded. "I understand, Sanzo. I understood from the day you left. Well, the day I woke up, anyways."

Sanzo stared at the glowing tip of his cigarette, his chest tight. The last few weeks had been a complete cluster-fuck.

"I got hurt real bad right in front of you an' you thought I was dyin'," Goku said as he stared at the fire. He hung his head. "I was weak and let myself get attacked." He looked up then, swiveling his head to face Sanzo. "But I'll get stronger, I promise."

Sanzo snorted. "Stronger? Monkey, if you were any stronger you would be fucking titanium. Neither one of us sensed that bastard." He took a long drag off his cigarette and stared into the fire. "And if you think that way, then I 'let' him beat the fucking shit out of me, and 'let' him almost erase my existence." He blew out a puff of smoke. "I'm the weak one."

Now it was Goku's turn to snort. "Nah, you're pretty strong for a human. You fought him like crazy, an' Hakkai said Ukoku broke almost all your bones." He took Sanzo's free hand in his, turning the wrist so that Sanzo's hand was palm-up.

It was the hand that Goku had grabbed to yank him out of the coils of Ukoku's Muten scripture, and under the black glove his wrist still bore the almost-faded imprint of the monkey's fingers. Sanzo had found himself reluctant to have those bruises healed, choosing not to mention them to Hakkai. When Goku turned his hand over Sanzo winced at a twinge of discomfort, but didn't remove his hand.

"M' glad that I was the one that pulled you out of that dark," Goku said softly, running his fingers along the black silk that bisected Sanzo's palm. "This is the same hand, y'know. The same hand you held out to me, all those years ago. I still remember."

The feel of Goku's fingers moving on his palm made heat curl low and tight in Sanzo's groin. He started to tell the monkey to knock it off, but his mouth was suddenly dry.

Goku's fingers continued their lazy stroking. "An' this time I got ta reach out ta you. Isn't that cool?" Sanzo saw a flash of white as Goku grinned in the semi-darkness. "I mean, it wasn't cool that I threw you too far –  an' Gojyo shoulda caught you – but, y'know? It's super cool." A finger dipped under the silk and brushed against his bare skin.

Sanzo's breath hitched. He needed to stop this. His body was reacting to the monkey's innocent touch in a very NOT innocent way.

He was about to pull his hand away when the Goku spoke again. "Sanzo?"

Sanzo looked away from Goku's stroking fingers and glanced at the teen's face, finding himself fascinated by how the fire lit Goku's profile with fiery reds and golds. "Hmmm?"

You went ta go kill him, didn't you?"

Sanzo remembered that blinding, violent, murderous rage that had surged through him that night. "I… wanted to tear him apart with my bare hands."

"Cuz he hurt me?"

"…Yeah. Mostly." His cigarette was down to the filter, so Sanzo threw the butt into the fire. He really needed to get his hand out of the monkey's grasp. Now. The feel of Goku's fingers against his palm had not only gotten him hard, but he was beginning to imagine those fingers moving on to other places. He started to pull his hand away, but Goku tightened his hold on Sanzo's wrist, and Sanzo grimaced as the monkey's grip pressed against bruised flesh. But the stroking stopped, so Sanzo left his hand where it was... again.

Goku raised his head and looked at Sanzo then, and his eyes were luminous and intense. "That's just how I felt when that Rikudo guy hurt you. I wanted to rip him to pieces. I feel that way about anybody who tries ta hurt you."

Sanzo frowned. "I don't need you to protect me."

Goku shook his head. "S'not the same thing. I know you don't want that, though I gotta tell you m'always gonna look out for you. Just like m'always gonna look out for Gojyo an' Hakkai. S'what friends do. It's like the way you shot Gat when he was gonna shoot me." His mouth set in a stubborn line. "But nobody's gonna hurt you an' get away with it."

There was more than a hint of possessiveness in Goku's tone, and Sanzo wasn't sure how he felt about that. For awhile now, he had accepted the fact that Goku was "his monkey", but the thought that Goku was similarly possessive about him was both unsettling and …arousing.

Goku went back to watching the fire, but he kept his grip on Sanzo's hand.  "Anyways, maybe it was a good thing we all were apart. We saw stuff stayin' in that youkai village that we never woulda seen if you'd been there.' He added another log to the fire. "Not that I wasn't worried about how you were doin' with Hazel. He was weird."

"That's an understatement."

Goku's expression turned serious. "But all the stuff that happened in those two villages in the desert made me think a lot about why we're goin' West. An' I learned somethin', Sanzo. I learned that even though I came with you on this journey cuz I always come with you, now I wanna go West and get rid of the Minus Wave cuz it's real important. It's super important, an' I wanna be a part of getting' rid of it. Cuz I feel that way, an' not just cuz you're goin' there." He looked squarely at Sanzo, almost defiantly.

Sanzo matched that level gaze, and he felt a fierce pride swell inside him. Goku had gone and grown up on him while he was away. No, that wasn't right. Goku had been growing up all this time and Sanzo hadn't been paying attention.

No… to be honest, he hadn't wanted to pay attention, because as Goku's attitude was maturing, his body was too. Gone were the chubby cheeks, replaced by a sharp, angled jawline. The babyfat was gone too – leaving lean, whipcord muscles that made Goku look every inch the young demi-god he was. And that new body was wreaking havoc with Sanzo's senses. He wanted to lick and nip along that jaw and run his hands over those taut muscles. Lose himself in that tight, sculpted ass and make the monkey be noisy in a whole new way. He'd been trying to overlook Goku's physical changes, but this new maturity added an appeal that was getting impossible to ignore. Just like the erection that was making his jeans uncomfortably tight.

He managed to find his voice. "That's the way it's supposed to be, monkey. You should have your own path, and not just be following mine."

Goku's fingers started stroking again, this time fingering the silver band at the top of the black silk glove. "But it's okay if our paths cross, right? If our paths go to the same place?"

This time Sanzo withdrew his hand, only to rest it on top of the monkey's head and thread his fingers through spiky chestnut hair. "Yeah, if you can manage to not be a pain in my ass."

Goku's bucked his head under Sanzo's hand like an attention-starved cat. Then, to Sanzo's surprise, Goku pulled the monk's hand off his head and cradled it against his cheek. "Hunh. Sometimes you're the pain, y'know?" Goku nuzzled his cheek against Sanzo's hand. "I think my path is to walk alongside yours. Keep you outta trouble." His voice became muffled as he pressed his mouth against a silk-covered palm. "I always wanna walk along with you."

The monkey's stroking fingers had been bad enough. But the feel of Goku's warm, moist breath on his skin unraveled what was left of Sanzo's self-control. He freed his thumb and dragged it across Goku's lower lip in a rough caress.

Goku went very quiet, and Sanzo cursed himself for that impulsive touch. But then Goku's eyes met his, and they were so dark that Sanzo could only see the barest rim of gold. His hand was still clasped to the teen's cheek, and Sanzo felt Goku's pulse hammering beneath his fingers.

"Sanzo?" The barest whisper.

Sanzo slid his hand from Goku's cheek to cradle the nape of his neck, giving a gentle tug to bring the teen's face closer, and then he pressed his mouth against Goku's. Goku's lips parted under his, and the teen let out a small, strangled sound somewhere between a moan and a whimper.  That little needy noise nearly undid Sanzo, and he deepened the kiss, teasing his tongue between Goku's lips. This time the noise was definitely a moan. Sanzo pulled his mouth away and laid a finger on the teen's glistening lips. "Shhhh. Wake up those idiots and I'll kill you."

"O-okay!  I'll be real quiet. Do it again?" Goku shifted closer and brushed his lips against Sanzo's. Sanzo slid his tongue into Goku's mouth and started a slow, sensuous exploration. Goku shuddered and managed to keep mostly quiet, although a few soft "Mmmmms" of pleasure escaped his throat. One of the monkey's hands reached up to slide through soft blond hair, and the other hand slipped beneath the opening of Sanzo's robe and splayed against the monk's chest, above his pounding heart.

Sanzo felt Goku's tongue tentatively touch his, and he decided to let the monkey take over the kiss. He just barely suppressed a groan as Goku lapped along his teeth and then began to eagerly push his tongue against Sanzo's. But when Goku drew Sanzo's tongue into his mouth and began to gently suck it, Sanzo knew he had to call a halt before his self-control totally left him. He hadn't counted on the monkey being so responsive, but he should have known better. Goku never did anything by half measures, why should this be any different?

Sanzo lifted his mouth from Goku's and pulled the monkey's hands from his hair and robes. "We need to stop," he murmured. "This isn't the time or the place to take this any further." He stood, putting several inches of much-needed space between them. "And you need to start your turn at watch."

"But we will, right? I liked it a lot." Goku looked up at him with a dazed smile on his face. His parted lips were wet and swollen from their kisses and it was all Sanzo could do not to drag the teen into their tent and fuck him senseless.

They were going to make it to a fucking inn tomorrow if it killed him.

He leaned down and took those tantalizing lips in a quick, rough kiss. Goku responded hungrily, and their tongues sparred briefly before Sanzo pulled his mouth away. "Goodnight, monkey."

"Goodnight," Goku whispered back. He caught Sanzo's sleeve as the monk started to move toward their tent. "Sanzo? I'm super glad you're back with us. With me."

too, monkey." And perhaps for the first time, Sanzo meant it.

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