LJ username: Anonymous
Length: 2,096 words
Warnings/notes: A huge THANK YOU to aigooism for her speedy beta.
Disclaimer: All sexual activity portrayed in this fic is between two consenting adults who are at least 18 years of age. I do not own any of the characters.
As an Auror, Ron was required to stay fit. This meant that he spent at least an hour a day, five days a week in the Ministry's health and fitness centre. Most days, he saw at least half a dozen other Aurors or MLE officers exercising as well, but it was unusual to see anyone outside of the MLE using the facilities. Lately though, Ron had been seeing more and more of Malfoy there, jogging around the track, swimming laps in the pool, and lifting weights. At first, Ron had been convinced that Malfoy was just trying to annoy him by invading the one area of the Ministry Ron was able to relax in. He'd been angry. Didn't Malfoy have a private gym at home? It seemed that every time he went to exercise, there was Malfoy, running next to him on the track, swimming in the lane next to his, using the same magical weights as he was. Nothing was ever said, but it soon became a competition. If Malfoy was running next to him, Ron had to run faster. If Malfoy was swimming in the next lane, Ron had to reach the next wall sooner. If Malfoy was lifting fifteen kilogram weights, Ron had to lift eighteen.
When he mentioned Malfoy's sudden appearance in the gym, Harry suggested that maybe he had to be fit for his job now, too. They had very little idea of what Unspeakables did from day to day, after all. The suggestion only left Ron feeling more frustrated. He spent the next two weeks trying to find out all he could about what Malfoy did for the Department of Mysteries with very little luck. The best he could suss out was that Malfoy worked near the Veil, but not with it. His research only left him with more questions and a stronger urge to beat Malfoy in their exercises.
Within three months, Ron was the fittest he'd ever been and had started to see Malfoy's presence as less of an annoyance and more of a challenge. The burning curiosity he harbored to know what Malfoy's reasoning was faded into the background, replaced with more pressing mysteries within the Auror department. As the months went by, they fell into a sort of routine, and with it, Ron's suspicions lessened. He had an idea that Malfoy was trying to out-do him just as much as he was trying to out-do Malfoy, but there had been no exchanges of sneering comments or insults. Just challenging looks of determination. And then one day everything changed.
They had been swimming, each trying to reach the wall and turn around faster than the other. They were the only two people in the health centre as far as Ron could tell. His entire concentration was on Malfoy, beating him, getting to that wall faster, flipping over, and pushing off to do it all over again. They had been in the water for at least an hour, neither willing to admit defeat and stop, when Ron finally noticed that his throat was dry and his lungs were straining to get enough air in, and he grudgingly decided that it was time to stop. He reached the wall in the shallow end and stood up, chest heaving water splashing against his bare midsection. He'd beaten Malfoy to the wall at least, but Malfoy wasn't finished. The sound of his splashing was deafening in the large, high-ceilinged room. Ron turned in disgust and pushed himself up and out of the water, snatched his water bottle and towel up, and stomped towards the showers. He could still hear Malfoy's feet splashing against the water when he reached the showers, and he smacked the tiled wall nearest in frustration. It didn't matter how hard he worked—Malfoy was always going harder.
Frustrated and tense, Ron decided to take some time to relax in the sauna before showering. It would be good to sweat some of the chlorine out of his pores before he washed, he decided. He stripped off his swim shorts and hung them on a rack just inside the shower to drip. He grabbed a towel to wrap around his waist and walked into the sauna room adjacent to the locker room. A flick of his wand and the room was soothingly hot. He collapsed on a bench and took in the warm, relaxing smell of moist cedar. There were no more sounds of water splashing, just the steam coming up through the vent. It lulled him into a soothing doze.
He had almost fallen to sleep when the door to the sauna was slammed open and Malfoy stood there, eyes smoldering, towel barely clinging to his hips. Ron shook his head to knock the sleep from his brain and peered blearily at the blond vision standing in front of him. There was water dripping down his bare, toned chest, and his hair hung in wet tangles around his face. Suddenly, Ron's mouth was dry for an entirely new reason.
"What do you think you are doing?" Malfoy growled out, stepping into the room in a manner that was half-menacing and half-incredibly sexy. Ron couldn't keep his eyes off the glistening drops of water, and he had no idea what to say in response. "Why did you stop? I know you can still go another half an hour at least."
Ron frowned, eyebrows knit together in confusion. Why was Malfoy speaking to him? This wasn't part of their routine. Still, he said nothing. He knew that nothing but embarrassing spluttering would come out, and Malfoy didn't need the extra ammunition.
"That is, unless you've finally decided to take this little competition of ours to the next level." He all but prowled up to Ron and invaded his personal space, planting his palms flat on either side of Ron's hips on the bench. They were nose to nose now, and Ron still had no idea what Malfoy was playing at.
“Next level?” he squeaked out, voice faltering. Malfoy smiled a sly smile that made Ron want to squirm. And then he did the most unexpected thing of all. His tongue slithered out of his mouth and he licked Ron’s lips. Shocked, his mouth fell open in a small sigh. Malfoy took advantage, pressing their mouths together. Normally, Ron had a very quick reaction time. Fast reflexes were a requirement for field work as an Auror. But Malfoy kissing him was so completely unexpected that he wasn’t able to move a muscle until Malfoy’s tongue had made a full circuit of his mouth and his teeth were gently nibbling Ron’s bottom lip.
When he finally snapped out of his stunned trance, it took him another moment to decide what to do. He could push Malfoy away and storm out of the room, only to have to tug his clothing on over his sweaty, unwashed body, or he could kiss back, enjoy the feeling of being desired and pursued by an incredibly fit and attractive man for the first time in more months than he wished to think about. In an instant, he’d lifted Malfoy off the ground and had his back pinned to the bench, fingernails clawing into Ron’s back as Ron nearly swallowed him whole in an engulfing kiss. Towels quickly slid from damp hips, legs wrapped around Ron's hips, and their erections slid together. Ron sucked Draco's top lip and then his tongue into his mouth and Draco let out a high-itched keening noise that Ron never would have expected to come out of his mouth. Ron sucked harder on the tongue in his mouth as a show of how aroused it made him. Draco's hand slipped down his back and over his hip to grip his erection, fingers wrapping tightly around the shaft and giving a swift pull. Ron let out an appreciative moan and slid his mouth down Draco's chin, to his Adam's apple bobbing with every swallow. He stopped at a nipple to lav it with long strokes of his tongue before sucking it into his mouth. Draco's body arched into the caress, fingers moving to bury themselves in Ron's wet hair.
"Fuck, do you know how long I've been waiting for this?" Draco panted as he tugged Ron's head back up to kiss him again. The kiss was only a brief exchange of tongues before Draco was turning around and kneeling over one of the benches, saliva-wet fingers moving to prepare himself. Ron was momentarily disabled by the sight, enraptured by the delicious view of Draco's fingers slowly fucking in an out of his tight hole. He shook the sense back into his head and spit on his palm to coat his erection. The heated look Draco gave him over his shoulder was all the invitation he needed to kneel behind him and push in. The first inch was torture, so tight he nearly saw white.
"Merlin, you're tight. How long has it been since you were fucked?"
Draco pushed back onto him, head dropping down as his body quivered in pleasure. The ripple nearly pushed Ron over the edge prematurely. He snatched clamped hands on Draco's hips to steady him and pushed further in. "Doesn't matter, just fuck me now," came Draco's still-panting voice over his shoulder. Ron licked a stripe up his spine in answer and began to fuck him in earnest. Soon the room was filled with an intoxicating combination of the scents of cedar and sweat and sex.
After the encounter in the steam room, Ron’s relationship with Malfoy changed completely. They continued to push each other physically, but everything became so much more enjoyable. There was banter and flirting and random acts of groping throughout the fitness centre. Draco began to pop into the Auror offices at random, propping himself up on the edge of Ron’s desk and insulting his work ethic and wardrobe choices until Ron would become frustrated enough to covertly pinch him on the arse. Then, Draco would lean over to say extremely dirty things in Ron’s ear about what he was going to do to him in the weight room when they both finished working for the day.
Life continued on. Ron grew to enjoy his new relationship with Draco so much that he could no longer remember what it had been like when they still hated each other and were trying to one-up each other as a matter of pride rather than the intense, teasing foreplay it was now. But still, there were frustrations. They may have been all over each other a work, but they still never met outside of work. They never went to dinner or shared a bed. Ron had never been to Draco’s flat or held his hand on a crowded street. And increasingly, he wanted to. He felt this urge to owl Draco nearly every minute they were apart. He wanted to talk to him all the time, even if it was just to fight with him about whether or not the Canons t-shirt he wore occasionally should be made illegal.
He never gave into these urges. They still did not talk outside of the Ministry. It was as though they were still in silent competition and Ron hated it.
And then one day, things changed again. They were heading into the showers, Draco slapping Ron on the arse and making filthy comments about how good he looked in his swim shorts, when Ron stopped and turned to look at him. Really look at him. Draco stopped, too, and raised an eyebrow at him, but he ignored it. Instead, he cupped Draco’s face in his hands and kissed him for all he was worth. His entire body filled with warmth and he pulled Draco closer, held him tight.
“Move in with me,” he whispered, brushing wet straggles of hair from Draco’s cheek and staring intensely into his eyes. There was a gleam there, and for a minute Ron thought he might make a dismissive joke.
“Can I have the right side of the bed?” Astounded by such a simple request, he nodded, not even caring that the right side had always been his before. “All right then,” he agreed.
Elated, Ron hauled Draco up and carried him into the locker room, kissing him the whole way. The shocked exclamations of the three junior MLE officers already there went unnoticed. Ron was too busy shoving Draco into the tiled wall and kissing his lips off.
Later, they would both be given a stern warning for public indecency. They ignored them.