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This story was written for Oz Gift of the Magi challenge (fics much better than mine at http://www.livejournal.com/users/oz_magi). It was my response to Rifka's request (pairing/characters: Keller/Schillinger; keyword/phrase: "So, who's your daddy?; a library should be at story too), and I'm glad she had asked for that, it was fun to write! Maverick was a wonderful beta, thanks for that, sweetie!
by Adriana B.
Keller left prison library scorted by Officer Metzger. He pretended to read while having a conversation with Schillinger, the guy was avid for fresh news about Operation Toby. Knowing about how Chris had been fucking with his ex-prag's mind made him smile, the plan had been a success so far. It wouldn't take much long to Vern end this game, destroying the ex-prag who had dared to be stronger and smarter than him.
Chris' face had the usual cocky look, but his thoughts were a turmoil. It was happening a lot those days, memories of his time at Lardner were coming back and making him sick. It was an unbelievable bad luck being at same prison with Schillinger again. The thought of being stuck in a pod for the next 88 years was hard to imagine, but having to share a minimum part of those years anywhere near his former podmate was sometimes an unbearable situation.
Ol' Vern knew his feelings, he wasn't stupid to believe there was any lost love between them. Living inside (no, *surviving* inside), though, required certain abilities, and being able to make allies was probably the most important one. Keller was good at it, the Nazi prick had already proved to be a very useful ally back at Lardner, helping a young Keller to cross those gates alive when he'd done his time. Of course it had a price - providing orifices to be fulfilled by Schillinger's come wasn't a pleasant experience, but *then* he didn't get off humiliating his prags. Keller sighed, thinking again what Beecher had endured during his months receiving Vern's special treatment. No wonder the guy had gone crazy and...
A brief smile threatened to appear, he'd heard about it here and there, he'd have loved to see Beecher doing his number on Schillinger at gym. Beecher... it was almost over, Vern was pleased with how things had been going, he wouldn't wait much more before ending that game. Their conversation at Oz library was very clear, the ex-prag was drinking again and acting like a hurt teenager who had lost his first love, so the time had come. And the most important thing: Keller wouldn't have to think about all that shit once it was over.
Yeah, he would be able to leave last months behind and forget all about Beecher. It was getting more difficult to think clearly those days, his podmate was on his thoughts all the time. Keller kept telling himself it was happening because he was focused on Operation Toby, but it sounded like a lie - no, it sounded like an excuse to think about the attorney from lights on to lights out. Anyway it'd be over soon, Schillinger was going to have his revenge and he wouldn't have to look at Beecher again. He wouldn't have to remember to fight that weird urge of leaving his hands just few more seconds on Beecher's nape; he wouldn't have to remind how hard was to stop himself before buring his noise in Beecher's curls; he wouldn't have to forget the feeling of Toby's hands on his shoulders; he wouldn't have to pretend Toby's kiss hadn't affected him; he wouldn't have to imagine what could have happened if Operation Toby wasn't happening...
Toby... since when he thought of Beecher as *Toby*? Once more Keller wondered how things had become dangerous along that Beecher situation. Lusting over the blond attorney wasn't unexpected, but that was all he could feel. That funny sensation he felt inside his stomach during wrestling, though, wasn't supposed to be felt. Having feelings for someone - that was a luxury he couldn't afford, not in Oz. What was he supposed to do but keep everything going on according to Vern's plan? Prison debts are always paid, and he owed Schillinger a huge one. His guts kept telling him he'd never be really free of Vern, he'd make sure Keller would remember forever how he'd saved his ass at Lardner, even after Beecher's death, but he refused to think about it. Just like he refused to think about Beecher's dead body somewhere, probably raped and with a sliced throat, life gone from those blue eyes. He knew it was going to happen, but it was a thought that made him very uncomfortable those days. The hell if he knew why. The hell if he didn't know why.
Moments ago, at library, Schillinger seemed very happy about Keller's participation at Operation Toby, he would be rewarded for it, and that was probably the only good thing that could be said about Vern, he used to keep his promises and being under Aryan Brotherhood protection would make his life easier on next years. But being Schillinger's protg would be enough to stand his jokes? He doubted that. He was able to disguise his real thoughts, but the idea of listening things like, "I care about you, Chrissy - tell me, who's your daddy?" made him sick. Vern would never let him forget old times, when there wasn't anything to be done but bit his lips and close his eyes while Schillinger was having his time.
That thought sent shivers up and down his spine. It wasn't a good sign, you don't show weakness in a place like this, he was relatively sure he'd never have to do that again, but it was better not letting those memories affect him. Like memories of that kiss at laundry, so shocking, so hypnotic, so passionate...
"I'll scort you to gym later, Keller."
Metzger words had startled him, he was deeply absorbed on his thoughts and didn't notice they had arrived at Em City gate.
"Schillinger told me you'll be the one with him at gym. You know, I'm very curious to see what Beecher's gonna do when he discovers you've been working with Vern", he said with a conspiratory smile.
"I'm sure the little bitch will look hurt, just like when I came back from the Hole, did you see that? You should sell tickets, Metzger, it'll be quite a show", Keller said with same conspiratory tone, before going to his pod - no, *their* pod, his and Toby's.
He'd be there, helping Vern to end the game?! He hadn't seen it coming, and that uncomfortable feeling came to surface again. He went to the sink, splashing water over his face and looking at mirror. That's great, Keller, just another shitty situation you caught yourself in. But it'd be over in few more moments. Then it'd be only a memory, something to haunt him on next 88 years, when he'd have to avoid thinking of what could have happened between he and Toby. Thinking about it could make him insane, he'd have to learn how to stop those thoughts and images. Yeah, the images could go to hell. He didn't want to think about that glimpse of love he saw on Toby's eyes at laundry, not again, not anymore. He'd already lost him, it was better to forget about it and get ready to help Vern.
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