Fair warning: all I know about skydiving comes from what I've seen on TV, and particularly from this one movie, the name of which I don't remember, which was about a skydiving team getting ready for competition. They showed some really cool stuff, and thinking about that movie inspired me to write this fic. If I've made any egregious errors of fact or procedure, please correct me; I'll be happy to repost a Rev. A if I can fix any authenticity bugs.
One thing I did for "research" was do a Google search on skydiving. And the first item on the hit list was a compilation of skydiving schools in... New Zealand! Is that cool or what?! When Orlando was skydiving in NZ he probably did it at one of these fields! [laugh] I couldn't believe it. Anyway, I saw some great mid-air pictures, including several showing people skydiving barefoot. Whodathunkit? But I figured that might be a selling point for Viggo, so I let him go up with no shoes. ;)
Title: Falling Free
Rating: R (barely, just at the end)
Summary: Orlando finally persuades Viggo to go skydiving with him. It goes about as well as Viggo’s venture into surfing.
Disclaimer: I don't own either Orlando or Viggo. I don't know anything about their social lives or sexual activities, more's the pity; this story is purely fiction. This is done as a labor of love and I make no money from it.
"Tell me one more time how you talked me into this." Viggo’s voice nearly faded into the low engine-drone, but Orlando could hear the tension in it as clearly as if his nervous boyfriend had used a megaphone. He grinned and leaned against him, one hand snaking around his waist for a reassuring hug.
"Hey, come on, luv, what’s with the pouty face?" he teased, his voice gentle. "You’ve already done it once! It’s just fun now, yeah?"
Viggo scowled but still leaned into the hug, moving one hand down to his waist and closing it tightly over Orlando’s. "I was just along for the ride, before. It’s not the same thing."
Orli grinned. Their last jump had been Viggo’s first, and he’d gone out harnessed in tandem with the instructor, strapped in tight with his back against her chest. Orlando still felt a twinge of jealousy at the thought. Not the thought of his incredibly sexy boyfriend spending time practically in bondage with a cute woman, per se; he knew that Viggo was devoted to him and relationship-type jealousy was pointless and silly. Rather, he was jealous at the thought that anyone else got to spend time in bondage with a gorgeous body that he very firmly believed was his.
"Five minutes!" Carny, Viggo’s instructor, shouted the warning from her place in the front of the small plane, right behind the pilot. She grinned at him over Viggo’s head and gave him a thumbs-up. He grinned back and rolled his eyes, getting a silent giggle out of her.
Since coming out last year, their lives had changed, sure, but the worst-case scenario they’d been silently dreading had never quite materialized. Studios like Disney had snubbed Orlando, sure, but he’d still been able to keep busy, and the extra free time to spend at home in LA with Viggo had outweighed any roles he might’ve lost. And what seemed to be missing out of the stack of offers since that time was mostly the "Aren’t I cute, don’t you want to buy a poster of me?" type projects anyway, and he hadn’t really missed those. He’d done more skydiving, among other things, and had actually, finally, convinced his reluctant lover to give it a try.
"Just think of the great paintings you can do once you’ve got this kinda scenery in your head!" he coaxed, giving Viggo another squeeze. "Last time you were raving about it once we got down, remember?"
Viggo’s bare toes clenched as though he could clamp them onto the deck of the plane and never have to move. "I’d rather not talk about it, angel. Really." He swallowed hard, looking like he was about to be sick.
"OK, no problem," Orlando said quickly. "Umm, hey, I got the final script for the new Bluth cartoon! It’s gonna be a blast, mate! I never really thought of doing cartoon voices as acting, you know, but when Don took me out to lunch Mark Hamil came along – he’s done a bunch of cartoon stuff before, you know? – and we were talking and...." He chattered away about his upcoming project, doing his best to be a distraction until Carny moved to the back of the plane and tapped Viggo on the shoulder.
"Time to go, Ace! This’ll be great, even better than last time! Promise!" She winked at Orlando before tugging Viggo to his feet. "Remember, you’re going first so Orli and I can keep an eye on you. All you have to do is jump; the hook’ll open your chute automatically, nothing to do but check out the scenery. Remember to roll when you touch the floor and you’re golden!"
Viggo swallowed again and nodded.
Carny opened the door and attached his ripcord to the hook, then slapped him on the back. "Whenever you’re ready, Ace!"
Orlando lowered his goggles and lined up behind Viggo. "Come on, luv, I’m right behind you!"
Viggo nodded once and clutched the doorframe hard, then flung himself out at the Earth, ten thousand feet below. His chute burst from its pack, then streamed behind him like a gay crimson ribbon, fluttering uselessly with the speed of his plunge.
Orlando’s heart stopped and every drop of blood in his body pounded in his head. Then he blinked and the world started up again. He howled "NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!" and threw himself out after his lover.
He pointed himself at the ground, head down, his spine stiff, his toes pointed and his arms tight against his sides, thinking of speed. Viggo was a tiny, tumbling splotch far below and behind him. He imagined he could hear terrified screaming wafting up past him, and he moaned. He felt tears pressing and closed his eyes for a moment, hard.
Will not cry, won’t, can not cry, gotta see, oh fuck, Viggo!
He used his arms and legs to aim himself at the falling body and flew, like one of Legolas’ arrows. And slowly the rolling, flailing splotch stopped shrinking, hovered, then began to grow, floating nearer with agonizing slowness. Until....
"Got you!" Synching up with Viggo’s panicked rotation, he grabbed him out of the sky, wrapping him in trembling arms and legs, as though he could press his lover into his own body and hold him safe.
"Orli! Oh, god, angel!" Viggo latched onto him in a grip that was actually painful, but Orlando didn’t care. He could hear his lover sobbing and saw that his goggles were awash in tears.
"I’m here, luv, I got you, you’re safe, I won’t let anything hurt you I promise." Orli wanted nothing more than to just hang on to and comfort him, hug him and rub his back and kiss him until the tears stopped and the shuddering relaxed, but he knew they didn’t have that kind of time. He squirmed a bit, unwinding his legs from his lover’s, then said "Wrap your legs around my hips, now... right, there you go. Your arms... there, around my chest, yeah? Don’t choke me, OK?" He managed a grin. "You just hold on to me and we’ll be fine." He forced himself to smile into Viggo’s fear-stricken eyes, projecting calm and reassurance.
A moment later, Carny came swooping down and made a neat turn in midair, matching their velocity and orientation. "Good catch, Orli! I’ll take him now." She latched onto Viggo’s arm and said "Come on over to me, Viggo, and we’ll get you down just fine, just like last time!" She tugged, but Viggo didn’t move. Orlando felt his lover’s grip tightening, felt the shaking return.
"Viggo?" Carny managed somehow to put a gentle note into her shout. "Hey, everything’s fine, Ace, really! Come on over and I’ll take care of you!" She gave him another tug, with no more result than the last time.
"Viggo? You all right, luv?" Orli rubbed his back and pressed his cheek against Viggo’s, or at least as close as he could before their helmets clunked together.
"I can’t. I can’t let go angel I just can’t I’m sorry I can’t...."
He could hear his lover fighting to calm down, to hold back the sobs, the panic. "Shhh, it’s OK, luv, it’s all right, it’s fine, hang on." He looked up at the instructor and called "He’s fair clamped, here -- not going anywhere! It’s OK, I can take him down!"
Carny scowled, then glanced down. "All right!" She wasn’t happy, but nodded. She knew what Orlando knew, that they had no more time for discussion or persuasion, and that nothing short of a crowbar was going to shift Viggo any time soon. She pulled out a knife and hacked Viggo’s fouled chutes free, letting them flutter off as the last of the lines parted. "Let me get clear, then pull! And be careful landing!"
"Yes, Ma’am!" Orli grinned at her as she swooped off to one side, then turned his attention back to Viggo. "I’m gonna pop the chute, luv. I need you to hang on as tight as you can. Keep your head tucked and your mouth closed, yeah?"
Viggo gave a jerky nod and tightened his grip, arms around Orlando’s chest and legs around his hips. Orli felt him struggle to slow his breathing down from hyperventilating to merely panting. He managed to croak "Ready."
"There’s my Viggo! All right, then, here we go!" Orlando pulled the cord. His bright yellow chute exploded out with a whuff! and a pop! and then a sharp yank, and seconds later they were floating gently, head up, feet toward the ground. Their descent was still faster than Orli was used to with an open chute, but compared to their earlier headlong plunge it was a gentle, lazy drift.
"There we go, see? Nothing to do now for a bit but admire the view. Look, there’s the beach!" Orlando pointed to a strip of sand, pale against the deep blue of the Pacific, but Viggo’s face was still buried in the crook of Orli’s shoulder. Orli’s smile faded.
"Vig? You can look up now, luv. Come on, look at me, please?" Orlando coaxed and encouraged, one hand rubbing gentle circles on Viggo’s back, the other squirming in between his collar and the back of his helmet, lightly stroking the soft skin at the back of his neck. "Come on, lover, come up and breathe, that’s it, slow and deep...."
Eventually Viggo took a deep breath and looked up.
"There, see? Isn’t the view great?" Orli smiled and gave him a hug.
Viggo looked up into his eyes and said, "Yes. It’s beautiful."
Orlando felt his eyes tearing up again. "Aww, dammit, Vig, don’t make me cry, I gotta be able to see." He took a deep, hitching breath, then looked into his lover’s eyes. "I’m sorry about this, Viggo. This is all my fault and I’m so sorry I can’t even say it." Viggo opened his mouth to speak but Orli shook his head. "Don’t. If I hadn’t nagged you for years, you wouldn’t be here in this mess. But I’m gonna get you out of this. You’ll be fine, I swear it. Believe me?"
Viggo closed his eyes for a moment, then looked back at Orlando, his gaze full of love and trust. "Of course I believe you, angel. We’ll be fine."
Orli swallowed hard, then glanced down at the rapidly approaching sand. He pushed aside the thought that he’d never done a tandem landing, that his first jump had been solo and he had no idea what to expect in... only another minute. Twisting his neck, he fitted the two helmets together and pressed his lips to his lover’s, kissing him hard while the back of his mind counted seconds.
Pulling his mouth away and glancing down once more, he said "All right, just a few more seconds. As soon as you feel us..." he was about to say "hit" but thought better of it, "...touch, you can let go. If you want to. And stay relaxed. Please! I’ll take care of you but I need you to relax for me." He held Viggo’s gaze until he got an answering nod. He felt the arms and legs around him loosen just a little, then a little more.
"OK, almost there--!"
The packed sand of the beach slammed up into his feet. Still clutching his lover to him, trying to shelter Viggo’s entire body with just his two arms, he rolled as he’d done dozens of times. But the extra weight hanging off his front threw him off balance. It felt like landing on concrete, and Orlando gasped, clenching his teeth against a howl of pain as he felt a snapsnap!
Then it was over. He lay in the sand, panting fast and shallow, his eyes squinched closed against the sun. He felt a warm, familiar body still curled around and over his own and his arms tightened. The body groaned.
"I swear, elf boy, if I ever see a parachute again I’m going to faint."
Orlando felt an elbow poke him in the ribs. He was about to answer when Viggo rolled over and jostled his legs. A cry of pain escaped before he could clamp down on it.
"Orli?" Viggo’s voice was tight with alarm. "Angel, are you all right? Talk to me, babe, please?"
"M’all right, I’m fine..." wince, "I think I... sprained my ankles a little. I’m OK, though." He took another impending wince and reshaped it into a shaky smile.
Before Viggo could reply, they were suddenly surrounded. Carny came running up and skidded to her knees next to him with earnest questions and a gentle hand on his forehead. A mob of EMTs converged from the other direction, bearing chests of equipment and two lightweight stretchers. The next thing Orli knew, he was being bundled into an ambulance, Viggo at his side, and they were speeding away, siren blaring.
Viggo parked the truck in front of their house, then hopped out and came around to the passenger side. Reaching in, he lifted Orlando out and picked him up in his arms, careful not to bump either of his casts. He pushed the door closed with his foot, then strode up to the porch.
"Can you get the lock, angel? Keys are in my left pocket."
"Sure." Orli bent his waist some more and fished out the key ring. "You know, you could’ve just grabbed the chair and pushed me. Better than making two trips." He opened the door and Viggo carried him in, then bumped it shut with his hip.
"I’m not making two trips. You won’t be needing your chair for a while. At least a week, I’d say." He flashed Orli a wicked smile, with a raised eyebrow for good measure, then started up the stairs with him.
"Uhhhh.... Umm, wait, just what does that mean?"
Viggo carried him across their room and gently set him down on the bed. "It means that you’re not going anywhere. You’re staying right here. If I want you to be somewhere else, I’ll take you."
Orlando’s eyes widened, then slowly closed as his face fell. "This is some kind of punishment, yeah? I told you I’m sorry, Vig. I don’t know what else to say or--"
Viggo shut him up with a kiss. He stretched out on the bed beside his lover and cupped his cheek with one hand. "Don’t even think that, angel." His wicked smile was gone, replaced by an earnest stare. "You saved my life. Why would I punish you for that?"
Orlando looked away and murmured, "But if I hadn’t--"
Another kiss. "Not another word. It was my choice. If I’d told you, seriously, to shut up about it and never mention it again, you would have, wouldn’t you?" Orli nodded, still not meeting his eyes. "There you go, then. You didn’t force me, Orli. I’m an adult and I made a decision. And when it didn’t work out and I knew for a fact that I was going to die, you came swooping out of the sky like the most beautiful guardian angel there ever was and you saved me. Don’t even think I’m punishing you. This is a reward, to show you just how grateful I am and how much I love you."
Finally, Orlando looked up at him. "You’re not letting me move around by myself? That’s a reward?"
Viggo’s smile widened and his eyes clouded with passion. "Yes, the best kind. Because while you’re stuck here, unable to get away, I’m going to kiss you, and touch you, and give you the best blowjob you’ve ever experienced in your life, and then I’m going to fuck you into the mattress. And when I’m done I’m going to start all over. I figure I’ll be done expressing my gratitude in about a week or so. Then you can have your chair, if you think you're capable of sitting down." He planted a quick kiss on Orli’s nose and winked at him.
Orli’s face had taken on a dazed expression somewhere in the middle of the explanation. He swallowed hard and said, "Sounds like a plan."
"Good." Viggo searched his face for long seconds, then whispered, "I love you so much, angel." He cut off any response Orlando might have made by kissing him long and deep, then proceeded to demonstrate his love and gratitude.