Title: Pressing Luck
Character/s: Gwaine, Leon
Summary: Gwaine wins more than he expects in a game of craps.
Warnings: Modern!AU, mention of a minor gambling problem
Word Count: 1,993
Prompt: #404 - "I daren't stay long. I just had to see you."
Author's Notes: I'm sorry for being late and I'm very sorry about the length. I'm not sure where this came from but it was fun to write. Much of the story takes place around a game of craps but I tried to keep the specifics to a minimum. It's not necessary to know anything about craps. They win, that's all that matters. :)
Gwaine wandered through the casino, letting the floor noise rattle away the chaos of the dinner he'd just left.
It was intoxicating.
The call of the dealers, the clatter of chips, the constant beeping and ringing of the slot machines. Gwaine was tempted to join in but somehow, miraculously, he knew better than to give in; perhaps Leon's sense of responsibility was finally rubbing off on him. It wasn't that he had a gambling problem as much as a gambling weakness. Gwaine had always loved games of chance but he was terrible at recognizing when a streak became a slump. He always played until the end and the end was usually when he ran out of money.
Vegas hadn't been Gwaine's first choice - or any choice, for that matter - in destination for this trip. However, Arthur was paying so he was hardly complaining. He had more than enough to occupy him that didn't involve odds, wagers, or the shuffle of cards.
If only Gwaine could find him.
A few more minutes of wandering led Gwaine through a narrow corridor of slot machines that opened into a wide room of table games. He finally spotted Leon at a table and sauntered over to him, ignoring the itch in his fingers when he saw that the table was as craps table.
No part of craps agreed with Gwaine, not the dice, nor the many bets, nor the crowd that would turn on a stranger after one bad roll - or ten.
He focused on Leon instead, who was dressed in a suit with no tie - scandalous - and holding a nearly empty glass of whiskey. Gwaine grinned at the sight; he was a big fan of one drink Leon.
"Need a good luck charm, handsome?" he asked, stepping up next to Leon.
Leon turned to him, looking pleased at the intrusion into his personal space.
"There you are," he said, offering his glass in the same motion as Gwaine took it. He smiled as Gwaine finished his drink. "I heard that dinner was over but I didn't know if you had other plans with Merlin."
Gwaine shook his head. "Merlin has his hands full, as does Gwen. Is Arthur always like that with Morgana?"
"Always," Leon said with a somber nod. "They were actually very close before their father pitted them against each other for succession of the company. Their relationship never recovered, even after Uther died."
"It's ridiculous if you ask me." Gwaine passed the empty glass off to a passing server. "Those two own multiple pieces of property around the world, on top of being able to afford any venue they like, but they both insist on getting married at the same place, on the same day." He slumped onto the table's edge and muttered, "Talk about first world problems."
Leon laughed but his attention was drawn away by the dealer.
"Sir? Your bet?"
Leon placed a single red chip on the pass line, the smallest bet he could make while still being in play. He still had half a row of chips on his rack which meant he wasn't playing to win, just passing the time. He turned back to Gwaine as the person next to him rolled the dice.
"So you're free for the night?" he asked.
Gwaine stood tall again even if his full height still came up under Leon's natural eye line. He never minded looking up at him.
"Yes," he answered, moving closer. He'd been forming a plan all throughout dinner. "I thought we could get some wine and head back to that absurd room Arthur is paying for. Did you see the tub-"
"Seven! Seven out!"
The dealer's call headed a collective groan from the rest of the table. Chips - money, so much money - were cleared mercilessly off the table and into the casino's coffers. It was a natural stopping point but Leon didn't give any indication that he was done playing.
Gwaine surprised himself by making another responsible decision.
"I daren't stay long," he said, touching Leon's arm to get his attention. "I just had to see you. I'll wait for you in the room?"
Leon's arm was around his waist before Gwaine could step away, pulling him close, closer than Gwaine had been earlier, closer than Leon was usually comfortable with in such a public setting.
"Where are you going?" Leon asked, his smile as intoxicating as the entire casino floor. "You're my good luck charm."
Gwaine regretted having to bring down the good mood. "You know craps doesn't agree with me."
Leon gave a small nod, concern settling over his features. Gwaine was ready to take his leave but instead of loosening his grip, Leon pressed an unexpected kiss to his temple. It was soft and gentle and highly out of character; it wasn't that Leon was against all public displays of affection but he usually preferred a more discreet approach.
"We won't stay long," Leon assured him. The warm support of Leon's embrace in the overly cold casino offered an additional sense of ease. "I promised Celeste I would play the money she gave me."
Gwaine shrugged. "Your sister's going to be disappointed when that money is gone in five minutes."
"When it's gone you can tell me more about the tub in our room," Leon said.
Gwaine was caught off guard when Leon kissed him an unprecedented second time, the hand at his waist dipping into the back pocket of his jeans. He quickly realized he made an incorrect assumption earlier. The glass of whiskey he finished off was Leon's second drink, not his first. Gwaine settled into Leon's side, reveling as Leon dropped two chips onto the table.
He loved two drink Leon.
Gwaine could hardly think about gambling when he had such a first-class distraction at his fingertips - fingertips which he slipped under Leon's jacket, tracing idle patterns low on Leon's spine.
Leon didn't question the touch, instead leaning forward to select two dice from the six that had been pushed in his direction. Apparently it was his turn to roll.
Gwaine laughed sharp and loud when Leon held the dice up to him in the flat of his palm, waiting expectantly.
It was all Gwaine could do to not kiss Leon's warm, easy grin. Casinos had lots of rules about dice handling and blatantly snogging the shooter was probably an infraction against all of them. He took a breath to calm his excitement and blew gently over the dice in Leon's palm.
Leon, completely unfazed by how ridiculous they were being, winked at him.
Gwaine didn't watch the dice being thrown.
"Four! The point is four!"
Activity around the table picked up as bets were placed. Chips were tossed onto the green felt from all directions, betting requests being placed entirely in jargon; it was a wonder the dealers could keep up with all of it. Still with his hand in Gwaine's back pocket, Leon tossed a handful of chips onto the table, more than he'd previously been playing.
"$5 on six, eight, and ten," Leon said when the dealer looked at him. "$5 on all of the hard ways."
"Like your evens?" Gwaine asked, curious as to Leon's strategy.
Leon shrugged. "It's easy to remember."
The dice were pushed towards him again and all bets were closed. The people around the table were watching but Leon didn't hesitate to hold the dice up for Gwaine again. Gwaine blew on the dice, struggling to keep a straight face when the hand in his back pocket squeezed his arse as he did.
The subtle curve that grew on Leon's smile was sinful as he said nothing and threw the dice.
"Eight! Hard eight!"
The other players at the table cheered.
"The perfect good luck charm," Leon whispered as bets were being paid out, his tone rather than the scent of whiskey making Gwaine feel heady. The tone was gone in an instant when Leon spoken to the dealer. "Press the eight and the hard eight."
Gwaine was suddenly very confused as to why they were still there on the casino floor when they could be in their room, making very good use of its massive soaking tub. He wanted to go and stay in equal measure, dying to know what else two drink Leon would do.
The table settled, bets were closed, and Leon held the dice up to Gwaine again.
The game became a blur of chips and dice and cheers after that.
Gwaine tried not to think about what was happening as dice were rolled and chips were dolled out because he knew from experience that the moment he acknowledged a streak was the moment it was over. He purposefully stopped listening to Leon's bets, focusing only on the warm heat of Leon's hand in his back pocket, the solid presence of Leon at his side. Someone offered Gwaine a drink at one point which he was grateful for because it gave him something to do other than watch the roll of the dice.
The inevitable eventually caught up to them.
"Seven! Seven out!"
The crowd - it was as crowd now - around the table groaned as the dice rolled seven, bringing Leon's turn as the shooter to an end. Stacks of chips, mainly green when they were previously red, were cleared off the table in quick, efficient strokes. Expecting all to be lost, Gwaine was surprised to see a full row of chips in the rack in front of Leon, all of them either green or black.
Leon took his hand out of Gwaine's back pocket and checked the time on his watch.
"I'm sorry that took so long." Space opened between them as Leon placed a hand on Gwaine's shoulder. "I said we wouldn't stay long. Are you okay?"
The shift was subtle, soft, and quick. Leon's expression was remorseful, having lost its earlier spark of mischief. His tone was gentle, lacking any of its previous suggestive undertones.
He was sobering.
Gwaine missed two drink Leon from the second he slipped away but he was comforted by Leon's concern, a trait that was ever present and ever aware of him.
"I'm fine," he answered, grinning at how Leon seemed to notice Gwaine's hand under his jacket for the first time. Their hands fell away from each other as Leon looked reassured. "It was fun. I didn't know it was possible to shoot for that long. Celeste will be happy with her winnings."
Leon took chips from his rack and tossed one to each of the dealers, a tip. He picked up the rest of the row and slipped half into his pocket, offering the other half to Gwaine.
"They're not all her winnings," Leon said as they eased away from the table. "What should we do with ours? I believe you said something about wine?"
Gwaine looked up at Leon, still feeling caught in the whirlwind of the game.
"How about we get married?" he asked without thinking.
"Maybe in the morning," Leon said, only giving it a moment's thought.
Gwaine felt oddly disappointed. He asked in jest - mainly - but he'd expected Leon to at least pause over such a huge proposition. They had talked about it once or twice. He worried for the first time that Leon hadn't felt as strongly about those talks as he did.
Leon grabbed the sleeve of Gwaine's jacket, turning Gwaine towards him as they stopped near the keno lounge. Gwaine was still holding the pile of chips in his hands.
"I'd like to hear more about your tub proposal before we embark on such a commitment."
It was all Gwaine could do to not drop the handful of chips as Leon took his face in both hands and kissed him, openly and wholeheartedly on the casino floor.
Gwaine's head was a rush of thoughts, all centered around Leon and the promise of the morning.
It was intoxicating.