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fanfic: Cycle

This is the final chapter of my Connor/Becker 'Need' series. It's not the ending that I know a lot of you wanted, but it was the only way that I could see this realistically going (despite[info]thefakebook  's rather macabre suggestions of it ending in suicide).

Title: Cycle
Author: Athene
Fandom: Primeval
Pairing/characters: Connor/Becker (Connor/Nick implied)
Rating: 18
Warnings: Language, smut, angst, (implied abusive relationship).
Spoilers: none
Disclaimer: Not mine. ITV and Impossible Pictures own them.
Word count: approx 2200
Summary: What goes around comes around. 
AN: Follows on from The Substitute, Need, The New Order, The Next Roll of the Dice, Secrets and Lies, Tangled Webs, and Comfort.


            Connor turned up on his doorstep late at night. Becker stepped aside and let him in, taking in the slump to Connor’s shoulders, the hurt in his eyes, the fact that he looked defeated.

            For once there was no immediate grappling the moment the door closed, and Becker followed him and quickly moved his book off the other side of the sofa for him to sit down.

            “You okay?” Becker asked eventually when Connor didn’t speak.

            Connor was staring at his hands, his whole body hunched and defensive.

            “I tried to leave him, but I can’t.”

            Well, that was unexpected. Becker wasn’t entirely sure whether this revelation was good news or not. Whatever he thought, Connor clearly wasn’t jumping for joy about it.

            “You tried to leave him?”

            “He needs me.”

            Becker felt a surge of anger.

            “For fuck’s sake, Connor! Stuff what he needs for a change. What about you? What do you need?”

            Connor was on his feet in an instant.

            “Don’t! Don’t start that shit again, Becker.”

            Becker stood up and glared right back at him.

            “Why the hell not? What hold has Cutter got over you that you keep going back to him when all he does is hurt you?”

            “God, what is it with you? Why do you always want me to fucking talk about it? Why do you care?”

            “Because I care about you.”

            The words were out before Becker could stop them. The two men stared at each other in shock for a moment.

            “No.” Connor shook his head. He started backing away. “No. We are not doing this. You are not doing this shit to me.”

            Becker followed him, his patience finally fraying.

            “Doing what?” he demanded. “What exactly is it that I’m doing to you that you can’t handle? You’re the one who comes to me, remember? You’re the one who takes it out on me whenever the stress of dealing with Cutter gets too much. What do you want from me, Connor?”

            “Shut up!”

            “What do you want?”

            Becker shoved Connor back against the wall. He didn’t pin him, didn’t even continue to hold him, but he did stand directly in front of him, stared him down, his eyes demanding a straight answer for once.

            “Don’t,” Connor said again. This time his voice was no more than a whisper. His eyes were pleading.

            “What do you want?” Becker asked again, this time more softly.

            Connor abruptly shoved at him with both hands on Becker’s chest. Becker didn’t even budge. Connor tried to slip sideways past him, but Becker pushed him back against the wall, gently but firmly.

            “Just tell me, Connor. What do you want?”

            For a second Becker caught a glimpse of Connor’s kicked puppy expression. Then Connor slammed his whole body into Becker, wrapping his arms around Becker’s chest as he bodily pushed. This time Becker stepped back with the shove and let momentum take them for few paces. He thought for a second that Connor was going to hit him and tensed for a blow to the ribs, but it never came. Connor’s fingers twisted into the fabric at the back of Becker’s t-shirt, and he clung on, his face buried in Becker’s chest. Becker felt him twitching, heard an odd gasping sound until he realised that Connor was crying. Becker hesitantly slipped his arms around Connor and held him. He had no idea what to do. Absolutely none. His hand started rubbing Connor’s back, high up, mindful of where the bruises had been last time he’d seen them.

            “I want...” Connor’s voice was quiet, muffled by Becker’s t-shirt, and he had to strain to hear him.

            “I want something that doesn’t hurt,” Connor finally managed to say. “I want a relationship that isn’t wrong and broken and fucked up. I want someone who actually wants me.”

            “I want you,” Becker replied softly.

            “Why?” This time it wasn’t an angry demand, it sounded more like a genuine question.

            “If I asked you why you wanted Cutter would you be able to explain it?”

            Connor shook his head. Becker tried not to wonder if that movement had left a trail of snot and tears on his t-shirt.

            “I don’t know why,” Becker said softly.  “I just know I care about you.”

            Neither of them spoke for a long time. Becker’s head was spinning at this latest unexpected development. But the more he thought about it, the more he realised it really wasn’t that unexpected. The tension had been building between them ever since their first encounter in the locker room, and he had sensed that sooner or later something was going to give. He just hadn’t expected it to be like this.

            Eventually Becker said, “Come to bed.”

            He felt Connor tense in his arms. Becker closed his eyes, and wondered how the hell he was supposed to deal with this. For a moment he wondered if he even wanted to deal with this. He wasn’t stupid, he knew the score, and he knew this wasn’t going to involve anything remotely like a happy ending. If he had any sense, he would push Connor out of the door and close it behind him and end this right now. But, probably for the same screwed up reasons that Connor couldn’t leave Cutter, Becker knew he couldn’t turn his back on Connor now.

            Connor and Cutter weren’t the only ones with a fucked up relationship.

            “It’s okay, no pressure. No expectation. Just come to bed.”

            Connor nodded, and pulled out of Becker’s arms. He turned away for a few moments and wiped his face, and Becker gave him time to sort himself out. They went through to the bedroom and got undressed in silence. Becker couldn’t help but notice the change in the atmosphere between them, the change in Connor. In their earlier encounters Connor had always been the one in control, he demanded what he wanted and Becker went along with it. Now, though, it was like having a skittish animal in the room with him. Becker couldn’t quite shake the feeling that Connor was going to bolt if he said or did the wrong thing now. It was as if the front of aggression and dominance had only lasted as long his relationship with Cutter remained secret, and only now was Becker seeing the real Connor Temple.

            The real Connor Temple was a very angry, very determined, and very lonely young man.

            Once in bed, Becker pulled Connor into his arms and just held him. For once Connor didn’t fight him, and he lay beside him and pillowed his head on Becker’s chest.

            “Why do you let me do this to you? Why do you put up with it?” Connor asked quietly.

            Because it’s the only time I ever feel needed, Becker thought.            

He had asked himself the same question many times over the past few weeks, and the only answer he had found was that being with Connor was the only time he ever felt like any of the team wanted him around. Cutter had no interest in military involvement, Abby never wanted to let him shoot any of the creatures, no matter how dangerous, and half the time the team refused to follow orders and just ran around doing whatever they wanted. And the fucking worst thing about it was that even despite all that, they usually managed to make things work out in the end. They really didn’t need Becker around. They didn’t want him around. Becker felt superfluous. The only time he felt like he was performing a useful function, the only time he ever felt needed, was when he was with Connor. 

Becker considered telling Connor the truth, but decided against it. Connor might have finally stopped trying to hide his vulnerabilities, but Becker had no intention of doing the same just yet.

Out loud he said, “Because you’re a good shag.”

Connor glanced up at him and the guarded expression in his eyes told Becker that Connor had picked up on the lie. After a moment he apparently decided not to push it, and simply nodded.

“It doesn’t bother you, knowing that I’m with Cutter?” Connor said. “You’re alright with being ‘the other man’?”

            “As alright as you are with being Cutter’s substitute for Stephen,” Becker replied bluntly, wondering if his words hurt Connor as much as the question had hurt him.

            Connor shifted and squirmed for a few moments, but his head was ducked and Becker couldn’t see his expression. Connor wasn’t stupid, though. Becker guessed he had to know the truth; that neither of them wanted it to be like this, but that neither of them were looking for the same thing from each other.

            “Connor,” he said a little more gently. “We both know this is never going to end with happily ever after. This is just...”

            “Convenient,” Connor finished for him.

            “Yeah.” Becker tried not to sound bitter.

            They remained quiet for a while, until Connor’s hand tentatively wandered lower and closed around Becker’s cock. Becker’s breath caught for a moment, and then he relaxed and let Connor slowly stroke him.

            “Do you want to... turn over?”

            Becker wasn’t surprised by the request. Actually, that wasn’t entirely true. He was surprised that it was phrased as a request, rather than an order, but he wasn’t surprised that in the end it always came down to sex. He turned onto his side, facing away from Connor, and there was a few moments delay while Connor sorted out the condom, and then the younger man pressed close behind Becker and carefully prepared him with well lubricated fingers. Within moments Becker’s cock was achingly hard, but he resisted the urge to touch himself just yet. He almost didn’t need to when Connor’s fingers found his prostate. Becker gasped and pushed back against Connor instinctively, and it took him a few seconds to realise that he was surprised when Connor didn’t slap him down for that. Instead Connor continued to stroke that spot, making Becker writhe and desperately bite down on the whimper that wanted to come. This was nothing like the last time they’d had sex. This was... this was almost like Connor actually cared about satisfying him, as well as finding his own release.  

            Becker knew he was deluding himself. He was no longer sure he cared about that fact.

            Connor’s fingers slid away and Becker involuntarily tensed. Even now he was still expecting it to be hard and fast. Connor’s cock nudged at his entrance, and when there was resistance Connor’s now-free hand found Becker’s cock and started to trace up and down the length again. Becker forced himself to relax, and as soon as he did Connor started to push in again, slowly filling him. Once he was fully in, he stopped, and they stayed like that for a while, the only movement being Connor’s hand on Becker’s cock. Then Connor pulled out a little and started to thrust, his movements still slow and careful, his hand still teasing Becker’s cock. When Connor found his prostate again, Becker couldn’t hold the whimper in any more. Connor seemed to hesitate for a moment, and then pushed again, hitting the spot unerringly until Becker was crying out and pulsing all over the sheets and Connor’s hand. Connor came a moment later and then they both lay still, Connor still buried deep inside him, his hand still curled around Becker’s cock, and Becker trembling gently as he came back to himself.

            Movement or coherent sentences were still beyond him when Connor slowly pulled out and dealt with throwing away the condom and cleaning up a bit. Then he was back, and he tugged Becker closer, away from the damp patch on Becker’s side of the bed.

            Apparently Connor had decided to stay this time instead of running out on him. Becker felt the smile on his face, and wondered how he could explain it if Connor asked. Connor curled against Becker’s side, and his arm slipped around his waist. Becker tentatively allowed himself to believe that maybe they had finally turned a corner. Maybe it really could be like this every time.

            “Thank you,” Connor murmured. “That was... I needed tha-”

            He stopped abruptly, and Becker turned his head to see Connor staring at him, his eyes wide and horrified in the near darkness of the room.


            Becker realised he had no words.

            Abruptly Connor buried his face against Becker’s shoulder. Hiding.

            “I’m sorry,” he whispered, his voice muffled. “God, Becker, I’m sorry.”

            Becker slipped an arm around Connor’s shoulders and held him.

            “Promise me something, Becker. Promise you won’t let me turn into Cutter. Don’t let me do the same things to you. Don’t let me hurt you.”

            Becker’s breath caught in his throat and his stomach flipped. The really fucking tragic thing was that it was already too late to prevent that, and Connor didn’t even realise it. Cutter had been Connor’s teacher in every way possible, and Connor had learned his lessons well.

            And now there was absolutely nothing that he could offer to Connor except empty words and comfort.

            “I promise,” Becker lied as he stared into the darkness.


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55 comments or Leave a comment
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sadera992 From: sadera992 Date: May 24th, 2009 06:14 pm (UTC) (Link)
ah. ugh. how powerfully bad that is. i see why its called cycle now. its painful but awfully likely. its so horrible that connor cant even see it.

i'm glad at least that it didnt end in suicide like i kinda expected it to. brilliant stuff, well done.

i shall be mulling this over for weeks now.
deinonychus_1 From: deinonychus_1 Date: May 24th, 2009 07:03 pm (UTC) (Link)
thanks. It was quite hard to write something this depressing, which is why it's taken me so long to get on with it. I was dithering over the title, actually, trying to decide if 'cycle' would either be too obvious or too obtuse, so I'm glad you got it.
fredbassett From: fredbassett Date: May 24th, 2009 06:58 pm (UTC) (Link)
Oh ouch, that really was a painful ended, but I'm glad you took it in this direction. It's realistic and perfect for this series.

The abused becomes the abuser. But I'm still left with the feeling that at least together they have a better chance of working something out.
deinonychus_1 From: deinonychus_1 Date: May 24th, 2009 07:09 pm (UTC) (Link)
I remember everyone's reactions when Telperion posted the not very happy ending for her Victorian AU series, so I was dithering for ages over this fic. I kow a lot of people have been commenting that they wanted Becker to stop Cutter from hurting Connor, but that was never on the cards to be honest.

The abused becomes the abuser

Yep, that phrase kept going round in my head all the time I've been writing this series. And despite Becker's good intentions there's really not a lot he can do at this stage.
sunsets_dinos From: sunsets_dinos Date: May 24th, 2009 07:13 pm (UTC) (Link)
I. Love. You. *pounces* *kisses* *cuddles* Um... sorry... *picks you up, dusts you down* *clears throat*

You have no idea how much I needed that. I've actually been rereading parts of this series today in my short 5 minutes breaks while studying and I was so longing for more. SQUEEEEEE!!! I'm so happy you posted! Brilliant series, one of the best Primeval series in my humble opinion.

I loved this so very much. Fucked up!Connor can only be made prettier when he's shagging Fucked up!Becker. Obviously very hot, lovely smut. But there was so much more in this. God, I love all these emotions, because, as you know, I'm of course an epic angst whore.

I really love Becker's way of dealing with this, the way he tries to get Connor to say what he wants. Lovely. And I so wanted to cuddle him when he was thinking about being superfluous, it hurts me because it's too close to the truth. Though in my series it's more like they need him to be someone else, they need him to be Stephen, and he just can't be him obviously. I think that element was present here too. Which is brilliant bc that's Connor's problem too. God, I could kiss your fic.

And of course the ending was perfect. Just when I thought omg, oh god, it's going to go all fluffy, and was about to hide... then you came with the big bang at the end and totally saved my miserable day.

*cuddles you again* *bounces happily*
deinonychus_1 From: deinonychus_1 Date: May 24th, 2009 07:25 pm (UTC) (Link)
wow, that was some reaction! I'm very glad you liked it, and it was a nice distraction from studying for you.

I'm of course an epic angst whore.

Me too! Becker needed to have a reason why he let Connor get away with what he was doing, and the fact that no one wants him around in the work context was the obvious reason. I could really see Becker getting frustrated by constantly being sidelined, so being with Connor offers him the oportunity to actually do something useful (as well as the fact that for some reason he's actually attracted to Connor as well).

LOL, re the ending. I was totally trying to lull you into a false sense of fluffiness before that bit at the end *evil grin*
bigtitch From: bigtitch Date: May 24th, 2009 07:17 pm (UTC) (Link)
That's a fab and darkly real end to this.
deinonychus_1 From: deinonychus_1 Date: May 24th, 2009 07:26 pm (UTC) (Link)
dark, nasty and scarily inevitable. Glad you liked.
telperion_15 From: telperion_15 Date: May 24th, 2009 08:25 pm (UTC) (Link)

Not very happy, but a very realistic feeling ending. Sometimes you just have to write what is right for the story, even if it desn't end in flowers and fluffy bunnies.

The moment where you suddenly realise that Connor has been doing the same to Bekcer as Cutter was doing to him is very powerful because I honestly hadn't quite realised that, being swept up in the story, so it really packs a punch... *meeps more*
deinonychus_1 From: deinonychus_1 Date: May 24th, 2009 08:39 pm (UTC) (Link)
The moment where you suddenly realise that Connor has been doing the same to Bekcer as Cutter was doing to him is very powerful because I honestly hadn't quite realised that, being swept up in the story, so it really packs a punch...

I'm so glad you said that, because that was the bit that I was really unsure about, whether it was telegraphing too early, or whether it needed to be more blatant at the end. Poor Becker. Poor Connor as well, for that matter.

I think it would have felt wrong to give this series a happy fluffy ending, even though my normal inclination is for a positive ending in some way, even if not completely happy.
lukadreaming From: lukadreaming Date: May 24th, 2009 09:08 pm (UTC) (Link)
Meep! The angst, the angst!

This has been an awesome series and I think this was the only possible ending -- and the title is scarily appropriate.

Sometimes you just have to write something and accept that it can't be a fluffy bunny ending *g*.
deinonychus_1 From: deinonychus_1 Date: May 24th, 2009 09:23 pm (UTC) (Link)
Meep! The angst, the angst!


Thanks. This series has been quite hard to write, because despite my reputation, even I don't normally break them this much. Glad the title worked.
verito295 From: verito295 Date: May 24th, 2009 09:12 pm (UTC) (Link)
This is so painful and then when you make us think they might be seeing a little light ahead you just twist the knife and make it hurt all overagain.
Absolutely brilliant
deinonychus_1 From: deinonychus_1 Date: May 24th, 2009 09:27 pm (UTC) (Link)
This is so painful and then when you make us think they might be seeing a little light ahead you just twist the knife and make it hurt all overagain.

Hee, I guess that woud be why they call me Little Miss Maim and Kill *grin* And since that was exactly the effect I was aiming for, yey!

jaynedoll From: jaynedoll Date: May 24th, 2009 11:07 pm (UTC) (Link)
The title is very apt. It's very dark but brilliantly written. *hugs the poor broken boys and hopes they would work it out eventually just because I'm soppy like that*
But this has been a great series.
deinonychus_1 From: deinonychus_1 Date: May 24th, 2009 11:25 pm (UTC) (Link)
Thanks, glad you liked the series. I suppose there's still a chance that Becker could get through to Connor and break the cycle, but the longer it goes on, the less likely that is to happen.
From: vampire_rey Date: May 24th, 2009 11:48 pm (UTC) (Link)
Oh, ow, ow, ow. My heart hurts. As stupid as that sounds. *hurts for poor Connor and poor Becker*

Wow. Um. *looks for words... hunts under the bed... hunts in the other rooms... finds a few* That was amazingly painful in all the right ways. I'm sorry it's over, but that was a perfect ending.
deinonychus_1 From: deinonychus_1 Date: May 25th, 2009 12:11 am (UTC) (Link)
thanks. When I decide to break the boys I don't do half measures! The ending wanted to be as angsty and hopeless as the rest of the series, and who was I to argue with the plot bunnies?
auntypam From: auntypam Date: May 25th, 2009 02:08 am (UTC) (Link)
Ever the optimist, I like to think Connor and Becker can fix each other. Unfortunatly same fixit nature kept me in a bad marriage to a Peterpan wannabe for 13 years. So yes I understand sometimes things are just messy. But at least they can offer each other a bit of comfort. Truly loved:)

Edited at 2009-05-25 02:27 am (UTC)
deinonychus_1 From: deinonychus_1 Date: May 25th, 2009 08:52 am (UTC) (Link)
thanks, glad you liked. It would be nice to think they could have a happy ending, but unless someone deals with the root cause of the situation - Cutter - that's just unlikely to happen. As you say, at least they can comfort each other in some way.
From: lilisange Date: May 25th, 2009 07:22 am (UTC) (Link)
I'm kinda new here but since I've read your story and loved it, I think it's only fair that I let you know :p Well, when I say I loved it, I mostly hated it because I was looking for a story to take my mind off an horrible thing called exam and I just ended up more depressed than ever after it, but there's a thin line between love and hate and the fanfiction is just so well written that I think I crossed it :)
deinonychus_1 From: deinonychus_1 Date: May 25th, 2009 08:54 am (UTC) (Link)
thanks, and welcome to the fandom. Glad you liked it, despite it being a bit depressing. Sometimes with fic you just have to wallow in the angst.
x_bellaitalia_x From: x_bellaitalia_x Date: May 25th, 2009 08:39 am (UTC) (Link)
That crack was my heart breaking.

This is fantastic, so dark and angsty, but so real.

I like how there was some comfort and fluff in the middle, but you dragged it back to reality at the end with the idea that Connor is likely to become an abuser.

Brilliant job.
deinonychus_1 From: deinonychus_1 Date: May 25th, 2009 08:58 am (UTC) (Link)
*looks around for sticky tape or glue for the broken heart*

I really did go for maximum breakage with this one, I think. And I'm really glad the ending worked so well. Poor Connor, he's already broken and he doesn't even realise it yet.
reggietate From: reggietate Date: May 25th, 2009 10:55 am (UTC) (Link)
Oh, Connor, you poor boy.... but sometimes, you need to write an unhappy ending. It can't always be fluffy bunnies. Brilliantly done :0
deinonychus_1 From: deinonychus_1 Date: May 25th, 2009 11:28 am (UTC) (Link)
Poor Connor indeed. He understood exactly what Cutter was doing to him, but he kept wanting to believe that he could handle it, and that he was doing some good for Cutter. For all his intelligence, it probably never even occured to him to see the parallels between his relationship with Cutter and his relationship with Becker.

I know you wanted Becker to confront Cutter and get him to stop what he was doing, and I did originally consider having Connor finally being able to end it with Cutter, but in the end this way seemed to be the right way to finish it.

Edited at 2009-05-25 11:29 am (UTC)
fififolle From: fififolle Date: May 25th, 2009 01:50 pm (UTC) (Link)
Oh man! Wow. This was so amazing. Poor boys. It doesn't surprise me that Connor won't leave Cutter, but the way this worked out, with Connor finally realising what he was doing to Becker, and Becker's thoughts about feeling needed... *oh MEEP* it was brilliant.
That was a fantastic and heart-breaking drama. Thank you!!
*huggles Becker and Connor*
deinonychus_1 From: deinonychus_1 Date: May 25th, 2009 02:10 pm (UTC) (Link)
thanks. I really went for the angst big time with this series. I think I need to write some extreme fluff now to compensate. Or maybe just a wee bit more angst, while I'm in the mood...
talliw From: talliw Date: May 25th, 2009 08:35 pm (UTC) (Link)
A fantastic realistic end to a great series.
Often there isn't a happily ever after.
deinonychus_1 From: deinonychus_1 Date: May 25th, 2009 08:47 pm (UTC) (Link)
thanks, glad you enjoyed it. The ending to this one *really* didn't want to be fluffy bunnies.
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