Ezra is breathing hard. Kanan’s body, hot and huge and heavy, presses against him so tightly that Ezra can feel every shift of the man’s powerful muscles. His rhythm is steady, strong. In the semi-darkness their skin glistens with a film of sweat. They pant through their open mouths and breathe each other’s warm, moist air. Though Kanan is trying to be gentle, it’s still more than Ezra can bear; he breaks with a reedy whimper.
“I can’t,” he croaks. “It’s too much.” He defies Kanan’s advice and begins to squirm.
The movement causes stars to explode behind Kanan’s eyes, which are now rolling. “Force, Ezra, please, you have to let me—”
“It’s not gonna work!” Ezra shrills. His face is pale, blanched with suffering. “You’re too big and it’s… there’s no more room. I can barely breathe. I feel like I’m gonna suffocate.”
Kanan, beads of sweat clinging to his forehead and dampening his hairline, does his best to reassure his frightened Padawan. “It’s okay. It’s okay. We’ll just”—he thrusts gently and Ezra lets out a mewling cry—“just take it slow. A bit at a time.”
“Kanan, it hurts.”
“I know, I’m so sorry, Ez, but I can’t… I gotta get some relief. I can’t take this a minute longer, I’m almost numb.”
Ezra gazes at him with pleading blue eyes. “Can’t you change your angle?”
“I would if I could, believe me. Look, I’m almost there. Just… stay still and bear with me. You can do this, I know you can. You’re strong and brave and I… I’m so proud of you, Ezra. Really.”
“Stop trying to butter me up.”
“There’s an idea. We could use a little butter now, huh?”
Ezra gives him a withering look.
Kanan’s hopeful grin flatlines. He swallows and a drop of sweat runs down his neck. “Sorry. Okay, listen, just… clear your mind. Enhance your calm. Focus. Breathe.” He inhales and exhales in demonstration. “Feel me, Ezra. Be like me. Relax. Breathe. In… and out.”
Ezra does as instructed, closing his eyes and breathing in time with the swell of Kanan’s chest against him. He can almost feel the man’s heart pumping.
“That’s it,” Kanan whispers, gazing at Ezra with half-lidded eyes and a faint smile. “Just like that. I’m gonna move, but you just keep breathing, okay? Breathe…”
He thrusts. Ezra winces but keeps his breathing steady. Kanan thrusts again. And again. The muscles in his thighs bulge, trembling from prolonged exertion.
The tension slowly drains from Ezra’s face. “Oh. Oh yeah, that’s better. Ah, I can feel…”
Shaking, Kanan thrusts with as much force as he dares.
Ezra gasps, an ecstatic smile on his face. “Oh, God, Kanan, you almost got it, keep going.”
Kanan grits his teeth and begins to roll his hips. The motion pushes Ezra a little more each time.
“Yes, yes, right there! Harder, Kanan! C’mon, do it!”
Kanan shuts his eyes tightly and groans long and loud, ramming with all of the energy he has.
Ezra howls in rapture—and his hands pop free from the durasteel cuffs.
Kanan sags in relief, heaving for breath. Not that there’s much room to sag; the air shaft they’re crammed into is a claustrophobe’s worst nightmare, and he and Ezra are chest to chest, squashed together like two butterflies on a pin. Only Kanan’s rhythmic rocking was able to free Ezra’s arms from between their trapped bodies and allow him to get the leverage he needed to slip his wrists from his oversized bonds. Now Ezra reaches over his head, grasps the edge of the T-juncture, and drags himself forward.
Kanan grunts in pain. Unlike Ezra, his hands have been bound behind his back. He flexes them, trying to get the feeling back after having been jammed into the side of the air shaft.
In the juncture, Ezra maneuvers around to face Kanan, boots and elbows banging. He pulls the lock picker from his jumper pocket and reaches out to him. “Here, let me get those offa you.”
Kanan bends forward so Ezra can reach his binders. For a few moments the only sounds to be heard are the little metallic clicks and scrapes as Ezra works the locking mechanism on the cuffs.
In less pain and a better mood now, Kanan hazards a grin. “Kind of a tight spot we got ourselves into this time, huh?”
Ezra narrows his eyes in both concentration and exasperation. “If you start with the dad jokes, Kanan, I’m gonna leave these things on you.”
“We should hang onto them.”
“What, the cuffs?”
Kanan looks over his shoulder, his ponytail disheveled and face still flushed and sweaty. “Spice things up in the bedroom. We can do a little roleplay.”
“Oh my God,” Ezra mutters under his breath.
“You can pretend to be my Imperial captor and interrogate me by sucking my—”
“The only person who’s gonna be sucking anything is you.”
“I can’t talk with my mouth full, honey. That’s kind of the whole point of an interrogation.”
Ezra smirks despite himself and shakes his head. “I hope I’m still as horny as you when I get to be your age.”
“And just what do you mean by that? You calling me old?”
“No, I’m calling you horny.”
There’s a bright clink and suddenly Kanan’s hands are free. He sighs and rolls his shoulders, flexes his numb hands.
“Nnghuhh, thank you.”
“You can thank me later. In bed.”
Kanan’s eyebrows leap up. “Really?”
“Maybe.” Ezra grins coyly. He pockets his picking tool and crawls into the lefthand shaft. “Come on, I think this is the way out.”
Kanan grabs Ezra’s collar, plants a quick kiss on his lips, then crawls past him to take the lead. “Age before beauty.”
Ezra grumbles. “Beauty is going to cuff age as soon as we get back to the ship.”
“Age is really looking forward to that.”
Ezra sighs, shakes his head, and follows his Master.