disclaimer: disclaimed.
dedication: to v and mori, who are both terrible.
notes: literally a bomb mechanic and her psycho boyfriend like what more do i need
notes2: my headcanon Murphy's family comes from Quebec, and bc he grew up speaking French whenever he gets really flustered he forgets how to English. all translations at the end.

title: the church of hot addiction (chariots of fire)
summary: It's like drowning in gasoline. — Raven/Murphy.

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"This tastes like shit."

"How do you know? Have you ever tasted shit?"

Raven's smile is a dark curved thing in the firelight, but it isn't happy. The flames dance shadows across her skin, and it's the most colour he's seen on her in a week. Finn's—Finn leached the colour out of her, left her empty of it for days. Even now, the pallor of her skin is wrong, somehow. It sets all his teeth on edge, and that's saying something, because not even killing people does that.

(John's kind of fucked up. Raven's not much better. Mort fait cela pour le pire et le meilleur d'entre nous, même maintenant. Même ici.)

"Nah, but I've smelled it. Almost counts, right?" she says, and the smile splits as she opens her mouth wide and tips her head back to take another gulp of the moonshine. Her neck is a long unbroken line. It dips with her every swallow.

He can't help but stare.

(God, he wants to put his teeth on her.)

Something clicks in the back of his throat, chewing down on unswept broken glass. He takes the bottle from her fingers, her skin under his a flare of heat but only for a moment. He puts it to my mouth, takes a swing.

Thinks: baiser indirecte.

"Hey, asshole, give that back, you're gonna finish it all—!" Raven grabs at it. She's small and hardscrabble and her ribs are sharp things, her hip jagged like a knife where it presses into his side. She doesn't eat enough—none of them eat enough, there's never enough food—but that doesn't seem to matter. She's strong, bum leg and all.

Not as strong as he is, though.

John bends away, bends back, his spine cracking sickly with the movement. Feels good, though, that pop not quite like anything else in the world. He holds her off, chugs back the moonshine. It runs down his throat hot like burning, clenching deep in his gut.

He's trying to fend her off and keep himself upright at the same time.

It's a losing battle.

The world tilts crazily, ce qui la baise Monty n'a mis en dans cette merde? And he's too distracted to notice as Raven makes a furious little noise, and launches herself at him.

Suddenly, John's got a lap full of reaching girl, and he has no idea how this happened.

"I didn't know you fought this dirty," he grunts at her, manages to keep the moonshine out of her grip via sheer tenacity and also a couple of inches of height put to good use. She's got him pinned, though, her weight settled even in between her thighs, and as long as they're like this, no one is moving very far.

"You don't know me very well," she says, grinning faintly, and yeah, that's true.

"You don't know me very good, either, Ray," he says, mouth twitching up, and pulls some voodoo ninja shit he learned fighting with the other boys in the compound when he was a kid. Yeah, Raven's strong, and settled low, and smart, and vicious. John's all those things, too, but he's also bigger than she is.

He flips her like she weighs nothing (she does weigh nothing), hands up to pin both her wrists down in one of his. Her nails bite into his skin, and for a second there's something hot and wild in her gaze, but then it's gone.

"Let me go, Murphy, game's over," Raven says. In the firelight, her eyes are mirror-black: there's no difference between pupil and iris, all too dark.

"Is it?" he asks, voice gone low over her ear.

"Yeah, it is," she says, something strange in her voice now, the rhythm breathy, too quick. "Get off."

He hovers, for a second.

But John, for all he's a murderer, is not a piece of shit. He's still his mother's son—she told him stories about before the bomb when he was a kid, and he hears it in her voice even now: aucune femme ne devrait jamais regarder un homme dans la peur. Ne soyez pas comme eux, petite, vous êtes mieux que cela. Tuer, oui, mais tuer propre. He sits back, gets off her, staggers into standing.

"Sorry," he says, shoving his hands in his pockets to hide the tremble. "Sorry."

He can't remember the last time he apologized. Doesn't want to, honestly.

(He never was any good at it.)

The bottle lies glinting at his feet, glass bending the rippling blaze into shards of diamonds. He bends down, picks it up. It's a comforting weight in his palm. Raven watches him do it—pushes herself up off the ground, shoulders hunched forwards, face a dark slate. Raven watches him watch her watch him do it. Her nails contract in the dirt.

John breathes in through his nose, and spins away.

"Hey, Murphy," she says, and he turns towards her because he can't help it. The crinkle of his jacket sounds so loud and he stares at the crease of her elbow because he won't look her in the eyes. Her mouth is open, and she licks her lips and goes "I want my moonshine back."

"Fucking Christ," John breathes, and then he's back on her like he never left.

Sex is just bodies.

But Raven isn't just a body.

Raven kisses like the end of the world. There's a savage joy in her mouth, a knowing that every single minute they had could be the last. She bites down, hard, bites down. His brain goes screwy with bright pain-pleasure, digs his fingers into her skin with enough pressure to leave bruises.

She's got his shirt off faster than he can blink.

"How do bras work?" he asks, because she's stripping and suddenly there is a lot of soft warm skin in his face and John, for all his bravado, may or may not suck at this.

(Hint: he sucks at this.)

"It's all in the clasp," Raven says, a little wary, a little drunk, her chest burning as she pulls him down against her. "Uncomfortable, though."

He snickers into her shoulder. "Fucked up."

"You don't even know," she sighs. "Like hell I'm—woah!"

Her hip knocks into his and they slot together, snapping into place in a way that he didn't even know bodies could. She yanks him back by the collar and their teeth clack. The blaze roars behind them, burning up the night. John feels it buzzing in his blood, poisoned blood, bad blood, god, he wants to smear it all over her, hold her down, push his thumbs into her throat, make her bleed

He jerks back, because that's fucked up, and there is a line.

She takes tiny little breathless gasps in, like she can't get enough air.

"No, no, get back here, Murphy, I swear to god, I'm going to—"

"Raven," he says, breathes her in, breathes her out. "Raven."

"Are you gonna take my clothes off, or do I gotta do that myself?"

John doesn't laugh, anymore.

He laughs at that.

"Careful, careful, my leg—" she chants, close to that breaking edge of pain as they both struggle with her pants.

"Shut up, you can't even feel it—"

That startles a laugh out of her, clear and sharp. If the entire camp wasn't already a walking brewery, someone might have come to see what the fuss was about, but as it is, they're all drunk and no one gives a fuck. But John stops, looks at her.

"You okay," he says into the crease of her thigh. She smells like sweat and dirt and musty clothes, and he's so hard it hurts.

"Yeah," she says, laughing still. "Yeah. No one's—no one's that chill about it. Thanks."

The button on her pants gives, finally, which is a good thing because she does this sinuous little body roll and the clothing carves off her like snakeskin. John skims his hands across her waist, fabric at her hips pulled taut.

"Can I—fuck, Ray—"

She hooks her thumbs into the elastic, drags it down her legs. For a second, the fire glows white-hot, and in the relief of it, he can see the scar where the bullet pierced her through. She's lucky she's alive.

(He's lucky she's alive.)

He doesn't say sorry. His fingers linger there for a moment longer than they should, and she catches his eye. It'll have to be enough.

"Je ne jamais voulu te blesser," he says into her stomach, just above the scar. It's like drowning in gasoline. "Jamais."

"What does that mean?" she asks.

"Open up, Raven," he says, his palm curling clammy around her knee.

She smiles. "Weak, Murph, I'm no lady. Are you freaking out?"

He looks at her, her dark eyes. She sees right through him, always has, always picks fights and picks him apart and stands back when the explosion takes them all. He's leaving the morning, and he's drunk, and Raven's beautiful in a fierce way that has his guts squeezing.

Baiser un canard.

John drops his head between her thighs.

(Open up, Raven—that's a lie.)

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fin.

o1. Death does that to the worst and the best of us, even now. Even here.
o2. indirect kiss
o3. what the fuck did Monty put in this shit?
o4. no women should ever look at a man in fear. Don't be like them, little one, you're better than that. Kill, yes, but kill clean.
o5. I never meant to hurt you. Never.
o6. fuck a duck.