Beta: Kate, you wonderful, fucking amazing darling you. <3
Pairing (if any): Gabriel/Sam (Sabriel)
Genre/Tropes: Spy AU
Word Count: 38,382
Warnings/Spoilers: Spoilers for the Kingsman Movie, I draw very heavily from it in places, and though I don't own the Kingsman story, I do own some of the additional plot points I added that I wish I could have seen in the movie.
Summary: Gabriel Novak had known, since he was twelve years old that he would never amount to anything worthwhile. He'd be a drain on society until his dying day, just like his Dad. However, when Sam Winchester, a Kingsman agent, waltzes into his life with his bespoke suits, spy gadgets and devastating smile, to give him the opportunity of a lifetime, Gabriel can't say no. Oh, and they have to save the world.
“Merlin,” Sam said, ducking behind a corner as a barrage of bullets followed him. He opened his umbrella and fired back two shotgun shells in quick succession, scattering the men following him.
“Working on it Galahad,” Merlin’s clipped tone came through his earpiece.
Sam grunted and tried to make his way over to where Lancelot was pinned down, leaning past the doorframe to squeeze off a couple of shots every now and then. Another spray of gunfire came his way and he ducked back behind his own doorway. “Merlin!”
A soft plink of something metallic hit the ground not far away and Sam stared at it, looking frantically around for another solution. Not ten feet from Lancelot was a grenade. “Lancelot, grenade!”
Stunned eyes turned to him, and the last thing Sam saw before he was knocked unconscious into the doorway was Lancelot diving for the grenade on the floor.
When he woke up in medical, a day later, sporting some new and interesting scars, he already knew what Merlin was about to tell him before he even opened his mouth. “I’ll tell his family.”
“It was not your fault Galahad,” Merlin said, standing up to check Galahad’s chart, reading it over. “You should be able to visit them in a few days, you sustained minor injuries - several cracked ribs, a concussion and multiple other bruises and cuts from shrapnel.”
Sam nodded and sighed, staring at the ceiling.
“He was my son, what do you mean you can’t tell me anything!”
Gabriel looked up at his Dad and bit his lip before staring back down at his puzzle. Luci was late coming home and Dad never liked it when Luci was late. He’d get in trouble, and then Luci couldn’t play with him.
“I’m sorry, I truly am. But your son saved, my life, and I want to try to return that favor, should you need it.”
“I don’t want your favors!” Chuck spat, glaring at the man in front of him in the suit. “I want my son back, not dead and somewhere I am never going to see him again!”
Gabriel looked up, his face falling. They were never going to see Luci again? He was never going to come home? He rubbed his eyes, trying to keep from crying. Why had Luci left? He’d promised to come back, even to bring a present when he did.
He blinked up at the tall man and kept looking up when he knelt down. “Hi,” he said, biting down on his lip.
“Hello there, Gabriel. My name is Sam. I want to give you something,” Sam said, handing the medal to the boy. “Take good care of it, won’t you?”
“Is Luci coming home?” Gabriel asked, clenching his hand down around the medal. His Dad sobbed behind him and he clenched harder, until his hand started to hurt.
Sam sighed and pushed his hair out of his face. “No, he isn’t. He was very brave, and he saved my life.” Sam smiled at the boy for another minute before he stood up and turned to the door, closing it behind him.
Gabriel bit down on his lip and looked down at the medal. Luci wasn’t going to come home anymore. The nice man had said so. He stood up and walked over to his Dad, tugging on his pants. “Daddy-”
“Go to your room Gabriel!”
Gabriel flinched, pulling his hand away. “But Daddy-”
Gabriel turned and ran for his room, climbing into his big boy bed that Luci had helped put together and grabbed his stuffed platypus, hugging it tight. “Luci…” He blinked hard, squeezing his toy harder. Big boys didn’t cry and Luci had told him he was a big boy.
Gabriel finished sipping his pint and scowled when Crowley and five of his buddies sauntered into the bar. Bastard thought he owned the place just because Daddy’d struck it rich and was holding it over all their heads.
Just because he had a job and sucked a little bit of cock for money in his life did not mean that he wasn't as good as these bastards who tried to hold things up and over his head. Gabriel turned his attention back to his beer and pretended to ignore the assholes.
"Well, well, if it isn't our favorite buddy," Crowley sneered, walking closer. "Where are your friends, Gabriel?" He paused and then grinned. "Oh, that's right, I forgot that you didn't have any since you're so busy on your knees."
"Fuck off, Crowley, I don't have time for your shit," Gabriel growled, taking another sip of his beer.
"No? You had plenty of time for it last Tuesday-"
Gabriel stood up abruptly and glared at Crowley. Fucking asshole. He'd had to buy food for his sister, and he'd had to stoop low to do it and Crowley fucking knew it. "You shut your fucking mouth about that."
Crowley sauntered closer, raising an eyebrow. "Or what Gabey-baby? What are you gonna do without my money padding your wallet? Daddy certainly can't take care of you anymore."
He clenched his hands into fists and relaxed, stuffing his hands in his pockets as he walked closer. "Fine, do you want another show, right here, in front of your mates? Let them see how good you like it when you shove that tiny prick of yours into my mouth?"
Crowley really could turn an impressive shade of red, Gabriel mused as he ducked under the fist that immediately came his way. He was also damn insecure about his dick, along with every other fucking bastard on the planet. "That all you got?"
The next punch that came his way landed in his stomach and he coughed, curling up when a few more fists immediately started flying his way. He really did need to learn to shut his trap one of these years. Maybe not this year, but sometime in the future, he really needed to figure his shit out.
When the blows finally stopped and Crowley’s crowd of cronies settled into one of the tables, Gabriel stood and brushed himself off, keeping the keys he'd swiped clenched tightly in his fist. He made his way outside and stretched, grinning at Balthazar and Uriel, who were both giving him hesitant looks. "How's it hangin' boys?"
Gabriel forestalled the worried looks that were coming from Balthazar by holding up the keys that he'd nicked, looking at the bright yellow monstrosity of the car that was parked in front of the bar. "What do you say we take Crowley’s precious baby for a ride, boys?"
Balthazar’s eyes lit up and Gabriel smirked, unlocking the car and climbing in. He gave a gleeful smirk when Balthazar and Uriel climbed in after him and he put the car into gear, peeling out. It only took two donuts and a nice loud rev of the engine for Crowley and the rest of the asshats to come tumbling out of the bar. Gabriel flicked them off from the window and enjoyed the stunned looks before he gunned it and took off down the street.
Less than five minutes later, he had three cops on his tail, but he couldn't give a flying fuck about them. In those old fucking cars, they would never be able to keep up with him. Gabriel took a hard turn and laughed as he managed to lose two of the cars as he gunned it down another side street. He glanced back behind him to see if he could figure out a way to make sure that he lost the last car when he realized there was a dog in front of him.
He cursed and slammed on the breaks, yanking the wheel hard and sending Crowley’s precious baby into the nearest lamp pole. The airbags deployed and he rocked in the seat, groaning loudly. Fuck. Fucking fuck, this wasn't good. He looked at Balthazar and Uriel. "Both of you get the fuck out of here."
"Gabriel, we can't-"
"I meant it, get the fuck out of here, now," Gabriel snarled, leaning back against the seat, closing his eyes. At least his father would be too drunk to get the phone call that the police would make to his house for this. Hopefully the bastard at least remembered to feed Anna.
Several more sirens came screaming up moments later and Gabriel closed his eyes, sighing. Time for the usual song and dance. At least Uriel and Balthazar had fucked off and gotten out of here in time and he didn't need to worry about them. It wasn't their fault that he'd decided to cock his life up further and steal a car.
The door was yanked open by an officer looking to intimidate him and Gabriel raised an eyebrow at him before he was pulled out of the car and pressed against the hood. The heavy weight of the medal stuffed in his shirt pocket pushed against his chest and he smirked, closing his eyes. He had his get out of jail free card, and fuck he was definitely going to make sure that he used it.
"Joyriding, Gabriel, really? I knew you were a fuckup, but I had no idea-"
"Oh, come off it," Gabriel said, opening one eye to look at the detective across from him. He recognized the guy, someone who'd found him on Smith street more than once. He wasn't the type to pick up boys there, but he drove by often enough that he was easily recognized as a cop.
"You aren't getting out of this," he warned.
Gabriel snorted. "What makes you think I want to?"
The detective raised an eyebrow. "So you want to leave your little sister in the hands of your alcoholic father? You surprise me, Gabriel."
Gabriel scratched his nose with his middle finger, glaring at the bastard. Fucking righteous prick, trying to judge him and guilt him with Anna. He wasn't any fucking good at it. "Haven't surprised anyone since I won a spelling bee in second grade. Guess there's first times for everything."
A sigh from the detective and a file folder dropped on the table. Gabriel opened his other eye and looked at it warily. Manila folders didn't tend to mean good things for anyone involved. How long would he go away for after joyriding? A month? Dad had enough money to last him a month, and Anna had enough food to do that. She’d be fine.
"You're looking at eighteen months, Gabriel, and that's if a judge feels lenient. With your prior convictions, I'm doubting that he'll feel that way."
Gabriel gave the detective a bland look and tried not to let horror curl in his stomach. Eighteen months? Anna would starve. Dad would drink himself into oblivion. He closed his eyes and leaned back in the chair. "I want my phone call," he demanded.
"No lawyer is going to get you out of this-"
"Phone. Call," Gabriel repeated, staring at the detective until he crumbled and nodded, smiling a little bit more. He'd get the fuck out of here, call Naomi to take Anna, and then he could go get good and fucking toasted. This had better work.
A phone was placed in front of him and Gabriel eyed it warily. The detective, wasn't his name something weird? Gads or something. "Could I get some privacy, Gads?"
"It's Gadreel, Gabriel, which I know you know."
Gabriel laughed. "You assume that I care enough to remember your name."
Gadreel scowled, but nodded and shut the door behind him.
Gabriel looked over at the mirror in the room and grinned, flipping it off. Fuckers think that he didn't know a two-way mirror? Dumbasses. He picked up the phone and pulled the medal out of his pocket, running his thumb over the design.
He'd tried googling what the symbol meant, years ago, trying to understand what the medal was for, but no matter who he asked, they didn't know what the symbol was. Not even historians. What the hell had his brother died for?
Gabriel flipped it over and fingered the numbers on the medal gently before picking up the phone and dialing. He took a deep breath and brought the phone to his ear.
"Kingsman complaints department, how can I help you?"
He swore and resisted the urge to curse. Of course the fucking number hadn't been anything. "Hey, so, look, I got given this number about a twelve years ago and-"
"I'm sorry sir, I believe that you have reached the wrong branch, let me transfer-"
"Oxfords, not brogues," Gabriel blurted, the phrase that the man had told his father rolling off his tongue. There was silence on the other end of the phone. What the fuck did that even mean?
The female voice piped up again. "Your complaint has been registered. Thank you,"
Gabriel sighed and dropped the phone to the table as a dial tone started to beep in his ear. So much for that doing anything for him. He should have fucking known better. He really, really should have fucking known better.
Maybe if he played his cards right, he could get that Gadreel dude to give him another phone call so he could call Aunt Naomi and talk to her about picking up Anna and making sure that she would be all right. Fuck, would Anna even remember him in eighteen months?
No one entered the room after he was done with his phone call, so they were probably leaving him to stew in his own guilt and stupidity. Gabriel grinned and leaned back in his chair. He might feel a little guilty about what would happen to Anna, but guilty over what had happened to Crowley’s car? Not a chance. The fucking bastard deserved it.
Gabriel hadn't realized that he had dozed off until the sound of the door opening woke him up. He focused on the doorway and grinned when Gadreel walked back in. "Here I was thinking that you would let me rot here all day. Good to see what I wasn't wrong."
Gadreel sighed and opened the door. "You're free to go, Gabriel."
Gabriel blinked and stood up, walking to the door. He tried to contain his grin and failed miserably. "Awesome, thanks Gads!"
He sauntered through the rest of the police station, rolling his eyes when more than one pair of eyes watched him go. Were they watching because they wanted a piece, or because he'd managed to wreck a fifty thousand dollar car that he'd stolen and walked away unscathed? Fuck it, he didn't care, it was awesome either way.
Gabriel stuffed his hands in his pockets and started to make his way down the steps of Scotland Yard and chewed on his lip. If the police had called his father, then it was probably a good idea that he didn't go home until he knew for certain that Chuck would be passed out and not able to bother him. Not the easiest thing to do, but he should probably make sure that he did. Anna was going to need food and he needed to call Naomi-
"Gabriel," a voice called.
Gabriel turned around, a cocky remark ready for the cop that had trailed him out of the building when he froze. Leaning against the wall was him. The man who had given him the medal, the one who had told him that Luci was dead and never coming back. He crossed his arms over his chest and raised an eyebrow at the bastard. "Who's asking?"
"The man who just bailed you out of prison, naturally," Sam said, moving closer. He held out his hand. "Sam Winchester, it is a pleasure to meet you, Gabriel Novak."
"Can't say the same," Gabriel said, taking the man's hand and giving two quick pumps. He was not going to think about how big that hand had been. He snuck a glance down at those expensive trousers of the bastard and smirked. Bet he was well-hung. He wouldn't mind going down on his knees for someone like him.
Sam raised an eyebrow. "A thank you would be appreciated for just saving you from a prison charge."
Gabriel shrugged and stepped back, eyeing the man. "You owed me,"
"Correction, I owed your family. And I certainly did not expect this to be how I would repay that favor when I offered it back then," Sam said, adjusting his glasses. "Come," he ordered.
Gabriel barked out a laughed and followed the posh bastard towards his car. He gave a low whistle when he caught sight of it. Looked like something straight out of a Bond film. Impressive. Wonder what he did that he could afford a car like this. At least he'd be able to pay for his services if he did end up on his knees, so that was a perk.
He slid into the front seat and waited for Sam to join him. Almost immediately, the car was put into gear. "We going somewhere we can be alone?" he drawled, relaxing back into the seats.
"I am taking you home, Gabriel."
Gabriel groaned and covered his face with his hands. "No fucking thank you."
Sam smiled. "You say that as though you have a choice."
"I do. I could get out of this car right now," Gabriel said, reaching for the handle.
Sam locked the doors and sealed them. "You can try to open them if you want, but you aren't going to get anywhere," he said as he pulled out into traffic.
Gabriel fought with the door for a few more minutes before he gave up and settled back into the seat. "Who are you?"
"I believe that I already introduced myself."
Gabriel scoffed and rolled his eyes. "Quit it with the fucking act, you bastard. Don't take me home, either."
Sam hummed and made another turn, pausing at a light. "What happened to you, Gabriel?"
"Nothing," Gabriel spat, turning to look out the window.
"One of the highest IQs in your year, a year of service in the military as a marine, you were set to move up as long as you could keep your mouth shut, and now-"
"You can get the hell off your high fucking horse. You know nothing about me," Gabriel snarled.
Sam looked over at him and frowned. "You ruined your career. Dishonorable discharge. Returned home, have never held a job, proceed to be nothing but a drain on your father and your sister."
"Fuck off," Gabriel said, glaring out the window.
Gabriel tightened his hand around his arm and fought down the surge of anger. "You think it's so fucking easy. To climb out of the shithole. You can take your judging attitude and go fucking throw it at someone else. I don't need it."
Sam looked at Gabriel as he pulled up to another stop. "Why did you leave the military?"
"You just said it, dishonorable discharge. I didn't make the choice," Gabriel said, closing his eyes again.
"Something happened," Sam said.
"It might have to do with my father fucking falling apart. Anything he gets in welfare, he ferrets off on himself, drinking into oblivion. My sister, who is fucking five years old, called me and begged me to come home because she was hungry," Gabriel snarled. He didn't notice when Sam pulled into a parking lot and stared at him.
Gabriel kept his eyes clenched shut and didn't look at the bastard that wanted to judge him, his family and his life. "My sister was hungry, she hadn't eaten in two days. She’d had to try to feed herself, because my father couldn't sober himself up enough to go fucking food shopping for the kid."
Sam frowned. "Your commanding officer-"
"Didn't give two fucking shits about my family and told me that I should have been glad I climbed out of the shithole and should forget about my family!" Gabriel shouted, yanking at the door of the car. "Let me out!"
"No," Sam said.
Gabriel turned to glare at the other man. "What the fuck do you want from me? Let me go, let me go back to fucking up my life, and you can go back into whatever woodworks you rose up from and forget that I ever fucking existed!"
Sam considered Gabriel for a long moment and then unlocked the car door. "Beer tomorrow, at your pub, Gabriel, three in the afternoon, just before tea should be perfect."
Gabriel opened the door and slid out without responding, stuffing his hands back into his pockets and hunching his shoulders as he walked away. Fucker needed to mind his own fucking business and not come sniffing around him again anytime soon. The last thing he needed was someone trying to get involved in his life and trying to improve the shitstain that it was.
He pushed a hand through his hair and glanced back at where the bright silver car had been parked. There was nothing there. He scoffed. Of course the bastard hadn't stuck around. He was probably glad that he'd gotten off so damn easy and without him trying to pick his pocket.
He called his Aunt Naomi that night and had her come over to pick up Anna the next afternoon. His father was passed out in a drunken stupor and didn't even notice. He ignored the looks from Aunt Naomi as he showed her out and waved goodbye to Anna, pressing a gentle kiss to her forehead. "I'll see you around baby sister," he whispered. Even though he wouldn't.
Naomi didn't look at him as she carried Anna and her things out to her car. Gabriel watched her go and sighed, turning back into the house. It took only one look at the trash heap to send him walking in the other direction.
He needed to be as far from here as he could fucking get, and he needed a fucking drink.
There was the distinct possibility that Crowley and those asshats would show up and beat him senseless after that stunt with the car, but if that happened at least he wouldn't need to think about how he'd probably never see Anna again. Gabriel pushed his fingers through his hair and ordered a beer for himself, sitting in a booth at the far end of the bar. He took a sip and stared at the ceiling.
Not even ten minutes later, the front door opened and the sound of a low voice echoed through the bar. Gabriel cursed. He'd fucking forgotten, how the fuck had he forgotten? Sam had told him to meet him here and now it looked like he'd showed up on purpose, not because he wanted to drink his sorrows away.
Only a minute later, Sam was sitting in front of him, holding a pint of Guinness and Gabriel scowled at him. "What?"
"You did the right thing, calling your Aunt," Sam commented.
"Fuck you," Gabriel growled, taking another few gulps. He would finish this and then get the fuck out of here. No more thinking about Sam and his fucking suit and how he exuded competence from every pore and how he would actually enjoy getting on his knees for the twat.
Sam chuckled and took a sip of his beer. "I would like to apologize, Gabriel," he said.
Gabriel warily looked up at Sam and scowled. "What the fuck for?"
"The assumption I made in regards to your discharge in the military. I do not agree with the methods you used, however, upon further investigation-"
"You had me investigated?" Gabriel growled.
Sam gave a mild smile. "Of course I did, Gabriel."
"Who the hell are you?"
"Someone who is interested in you, and what you have done to get where you are," Sam said simply.
Gabriel snorted and took another sip of his drink, watching as Sam did the same. Fucking hell, the bastard was handsome, especially with that tie. "I'm not interesting, nor do you give a shit. What do you want?"
Sam leaned forward and looked at Gabriel. "You know I knew your brother."
"Yeah, and he died because of whatever he was doing," Gabriel said. "None of which you could tell us, right?."
"True," Sam conceded, smiling. "However, there is a reason for that. I would like for you to-"
"There you are you little prick!" Crowley snarled, stalking into the bar.
Gabriel sighed and looked up at the ceiling. Dammit he'd wanted to finish his beer first. He looked over at them. Six of them. Of course Crowley had thought to bring backup. At least he'd get properly patched up at the hospital.
"Hello Crowley, darling, what can I do for you?" Gabriel called, batting his eyelashes at the bastard, watching as they all stomped closer. They weren't going to beat his ass with someone sitting across from him, not yet. But they were going to get Sam out of here damn quick.
Crowley glowered. "After the shit that you pulled with my car, Gabriel, you’ll be lucky if you walk out of here alive!"
Gabriel gave him a bland look. "Why? No insurance? Pity, I would have thought you were smarter than that."
They all stepped closer and Gabriel was about to suggest that Sam get the hell out of here, since he didn't need to feel guilty about collateral damage to those posh suits of his. "Sam-"
"Now, boys. Whatever your beef with Gabriel is, I'm sure that it's well-founded,” Sam said, smiling at the men in front of him. “However, we were in the middle of a conversation, and I would appreciate it if you would hold off your own discussion until I have finished this lovely pint of Guinness," he added, taking another sip.
Crowley turned his attention to the old man and scowled. "Get the fuck outta here Grandad. Don't want to hurt you."
Sam turned to look at Gabriel and raised an eyebrow. “Friends of yours?”
“No,” Gabriel sighed and pushed a hand through his hair. "He's right, get out of here before you get hurt." He also didn't want an audience while he got his ass beat, other than the ones who were planning on doing the beating itself.
Sam hummed and looked down at his beer. "Very well," he said, taking his umbrella and standing up. He walked towards the crowd of boys and smiled at them. "Excuse me, pardon me, please." They parted easily for him and he stalked towards the door as they advanced on Gabriel.
"If you want another rent boy that's just as good at cocksucking, they're on the corner of Smith street!"
Sam tapped the point of his umbrella on the floor and sighed. He looked at the door and walked a few steps closer to it. The group of boys had advanced on Gabriel. There was no fear in his eyes. Brave. Foolish, but brave.
He hummed and reached up for one of the door latches. "Manners," he said, his voice ringing across the bar, making the crowd of boys freeze. He slid the lock into place and reached for the other. "Maketh," he added, latching the other door. "Man." He slid the deadbolt home and glanced in the mirrored plaque, watching the group turn to him. Excellent. Now he had their attention.
Sam waited for them to step closer, tapping his umbrella on the floor. "Do you know what that means?" He could see Gabriel's surprised look in the mirror and smiled. Incredulous looks from the group of boys. Perfect. "No? Then let me teach you a lesson."
He spun and hooked the handle of his umbrella around the glass mug still sitting on a nearby table and threw it at the ringleader of the group. He was the only one carrying a gun, taking him out first would allow him to dispense the others with ease. The mug connected, shattering and startling the other five, dropping the ringleader to the floor.
Sam turned around and gave another smile, walking towards them, planting the umbrella calmly in front of him as the remaining thugs all stared at him in shock. "Now, boys. Are you going to sit there and stare at me? Or are we going to fight?"
Sam spared only the briefest second to meet Gabriel's eyes before he leaned back from the haymaker that was swung his way. He sighed. Unoriginal.
He ducked under the next punch and dodged the knife that had been aimed for his stomach. Sam sighed as they came at him, one after another. No coordination. They were used to being in the commanding position together, taking turns, but it was clear that none of them had ever fought properly together. No challenge. He threw the last one into the bar just as the first boy, Crowley, was reaching for the gun in his waistband.
“You fucking fuck, I’m going to make you fucking pay for that!”
Sam opened the umbrella and ducked easily behind it, waiting for him to empty the clip of the gun. Once he heard the telltale click, he flicked the latch at the base of the umbrella and spun it. The screen in front of him showed ‘Stun’ and he gave a small sigh, firing the rubber bullet and kicking the boy on his arse, this time for good. He stood, folding his umbrella, stepping over one body towards the bar. A hushed voice from the bartender had him looking over and he smiled blandly and lifted his wrist. He checked his watch, sending a dart into the bartender’s neck, waiting for him to fall to the floor before raising an eyebrow at Gabriel.
He settled back into his seat and smiled. “Sorry about the interruption Gabriel.”
Gabriel stared at Sam, not even winded, his suit still immaculate and his hair still gelled and pushed back from his face. Sam drank down the last of the Guinness as though he had all the time in the world. Fucking prick.
He swallowed and crossed his legs to make sure that no one noticed exactly how much he had enjoyed watching Crowley and his cronies get their asses kicked. "Who are you?"
Sam only smiled at him again and Gabriel stood up, tugging his sweater low enough that no one would see him at half-chub.
"Come with me," Sam ordered, walking back through the mess towards the front door. He didn't check to see if Gabriel was following him as he unlocked the door and strode out into the sunlight, but as he opened the car, Gabriel was on the other side of it, still staring at him.
Gabriel slid into the car, his heart still hammering in his chest. Sam looked like that had been nothing for him, hell, his bloody posh suit didn't even have a wrinkle in it. "Where are we going?"
There was no answer from Sam, and Gabriel watched the streets of London fly by as Sam drove them into the city. He was surprised when they pulled into a small garage near Bond street, and Sam climbed out. Gabriel followed him to a shop and stared at the suits in the front window. “Kingsman?” He asked. A tailor? What the fuck were they doing here?
"Gabriel, come," Sam ordered, opening the door for him.
Gabriel turned and headed into the shop behind Sam. What was going on? At the very least, he owed Sam for keeping him from getting his ass kicked, so there was no harm in following him, at least for now. "Are you going to answer any of my questions, or are you going to just keep giving those fucking know it all smiles at me?"
There was no one in the shop, only a selection of clothing on display. He didn't bother looking at the prices. When a shop carried bolts of fabric, it was easy to know that one suit cost more than he could make in six months on his knees.
Gabriel frowned when Sam led him into one of the dressing rooms. He'd definitely blown blokes in worse locations, and at least there was some sort of hideous carpet that they were standing on. "So what now?"
"Gabriel, look in the mirror."
Gabriel rolled his eyes and crossed his arms over his chest. "What exactly are you trying to get at here? I mean, I'm all for kinky shit, but I like to know exactly what you are thinking before I start-"
"Gabriel," Sam interrupted. "Look in the mirror."
Gabriel sighed and turned to glare at the mirror. Nevermind that now, he had a perfect view of how Sam towered over him, his height obvious in the small room. He'd have to play dirty to get out of here when he wanted to. "Okay, I'm looking."
"What do you see?"
"A tall fucking bastard standing behind me trying to be intimidating," he quipped. He caught the hint of a smile as Sam stepped past him and towards the mirror.
"That isn't what I see."
"Well, you're used to your height. Trust me, you're tall," Gabriel shot, his breath catching as hazel eyes shot to him again. Amusement glinted in them and he grinned back. This is where he was comfortable, he could deal with this. Might enjoy it even.
Sam hummed and turned to face Gabriel. "I see a young man with potential."
Gabriel scoffed and rolled his eyes. "You're about five years too late for this speech mate-"
"I'm offering you a chance at a job, Gabriel," Sam said. "A chance to become a Kingsman."
"A tailor?" Gabriel snorted. "Mate, I've never met a tailor before, but I know that you ain't one."
Sam smiled at him again and Gabriel couldn't help the curl of pleasure at that smile. Sam didn't seem like someone who smiled often. Pity, since the man's dimples were devastating when used effectively. Who was he kidding, the guy probably had a wife and three kids stashed on the side.
"A Kingsman agent," Sam clarified.
"You mean a spy," Gabriel said.
"Something of the sort. Interested?"
Gabriel glanced to the door. It was closed, but not locked. He could walk out of here right now and never think about Sam again. "I only get this offer once, right?"
Sam inclined his head and Gabriel swore. If he didn't, he could avoid Crowley and the other twats for a few weeks, maybe months. He wouldn't see Anna again, Naomi would keep her far away. Chuck, well, his father knew how to sign his own fucking welfare checks.
Gabriel shrugged and stared at Sam, tilting his head up. He wasn't going to take any fucking handouts, but he didn't have anything worth going back for either. "Don't think I have anything to fucking lose," he said.
Sam grinned at him, and fuck his dimples were unfair. Gabriel watched as Sam turned away from him and pressed his hand to the mirror. A red laser suddenly appeared and scanned Sam’s hand. His breath caught as a loud click echoed in the room. Sam stepped back beside him and the shitty carpet they were standing on suddenly started to descend. "Holy shit," he whispered.
"Indeed," Sam said, both of his hands on his umbrella as the floor continued to lower.
Gabriel stared up at the dressing room as they went deeper and deeper. He couldn't even see the details of the bloody room anymore! Fuck. "How deep does this fucking thing go?"
"Deep enough, Gabriel."
Gabriel snickered, earning him a mild glare from Sam. Not his fault that everything Sam said could be turned into a double entendre. Bastard with all of his 'come Gabriel's and shit.
"Back in the late 1800s, a group of men gathered together with the intent to form a private protection service of sorts. They called themselves the Kingsmen, modeled after Arthur's knights of the round table," Sam said, glancing back at Gabriel.
Gabriel stared up at the tunnel that they had dropped down and slowly brought his attention back to Sam.
"By the early 1900s, with several of their heirs dying as a result of World War One, that left a great deal of money, property and resources available with no direction. Thus, the modern existence of Kingsmen was formed."
"Uh-huh," Gabriel said.
When they finally pulled to a stop he was surprised to see a shuttle waiting for them. "Christ on a fucking cracker, Sam, could you get anymore Bond?"
Sam chuckled and hit a button on the wall, opening the door to the shuttle, gesturing Gabriel in. "Come on now, we're late."
"Late for what?" Gabriel asked, stepping into the train car after Sam. The door slid shut behind him and he settled into a seat.
"You'll want to buckle up," Sam suggest, pulling the seat belt over his lap.
Gabriel scoffed and settled into the seat. "These things never go that fast, I'm not worried."
When the car jolted into motion, Gabriel flailed and managed to hang on to the armrest hard enough to avoid being thrown. He pushed himself back as they reached a steady speed and glared at Sam. "You could have warned me!"
"I did suggest buckling up, Gabriel," Sam said, looking down at his watch. He hummed and leaned back against the chair. "We'll be there in a few minutes."
Sam opened his eyes to look at him and Gabriel stiffened under the assessing gaze. "What?"
Sam hummed and didn't say anything more. Gabriel glared at him and decided that he needed to rethink his whole theory on how much he wanted to be on his knees for the smarmy bastard.
He didn't miss the hint of the smirk that Sam got when he put his seatbelt on either. Fucking asshole.
When the car finally pulled to a stop, Gabriel cursed and stretched, standing up and walking out into some sort of bunker. He looked around.
"Shit, we are late," Sam muttered, holding open a door for Gabriel. "This way now, hurry."
Gabriel rolled his eyes, debating whether it was worth it to ask Sam where the fuck they were going when he caught sight of a massive aircraft hanger. "Holy shit," he breathed, stepping closer to the window.
"Your brother had the exact same look on his face when he first saw this facility for the first time," Sam said, stepping closer to Gabriel, reaching out to touch his shoulder.
Gabriel definitely didn't shiver when Sam's hand wrapped around his shoulder and gave a slow squeeze. "Jesus, is that a B-52 bomber?" He looked up at Sam and raised an eyebrow.
"Yes. And for that matter, so did I. Now come, we're late."
Gabriel trailed behind Sam as they went further into the bunker. He looked around and couldn't help grinning. Fuck, his life was a spy movie. How fucking badass was this!
Sam leaned back and smiled at Gabriel. "My code name."
"We were beginning to wonder if you would present a candidate at all."
"Always a pleasure to see you, Merlin," Sam said, inclining his head. "All right Gabriel, in you go."
Gabriel trudged into the room and stuffed his hands into his pockets. Fuck, look at all these posh bastards, standing about like they've got nothing better to do.
"All right everyone, fall in," Merlin ordered, stepping into the room behind Gabriel.
Gabriel immediately settled in next to the group and faced Merlin. He glanced at the woman beside him and then copied her pose. She was not the kind of bird he wanted to piss off, she'd probably tie him in a knot and fucking enjoy every second of it.
"Congratulations everyone, you are about to embark on the most dangerous job interview in the world."
Gabriel resisted the urge to roll his eyes. These bond-types were too dramatic for his tastes. Ah well, at least he was going to have some fucking fun.
"Fill out the name cards on these body bags. Add in your next of kin. If you tell anyone what you see, or do here, you and your next of kin will find themselves in one of these bangs," Merlin added. "Now, settle in, and I will see you in the morning."
Gabriel felt dread settle into the pit of his stomach. He stared down at the body bag for a long moment. Never see Anna again? He swallowed hard and stared at it.
“Here, need a pen?”
Gabriel looked up at the woman in front of him and smiled, taking it from her. “Yeah, thanks.”
“It’s just tricks. Scare tactics.”
Gabriel looked to the other woman and stood up, shaking her hand. “Yeah?”
She nodded. “Military uses them all the time. No one is actually going to die. Kali. Call me anything else and I will murder you while you sleep.”
Gabriel laughed and grinned at her. “I like you. Kali, nice to meet you. Name’s Gabriel.”
“Gabey-baby! Where did they get you from? The dumpster out back?” a voice sneered.
Gabriel straightened his spine and glared at the bastards walking closer. He tilted his chin up and smirked. He knew the type and knew how to handle them. “None of your business where I came from.”
“Hey, hey, just trying to make some honest conversation,” the guy said, raising his hands before holding one out. “Baldur.”
Gabriel shook his hand once and then turned back to Kali.
“You sure you’re ready for this kind of a commitment, I mean, you seem like someone who prefers...ah, temporary situations.”
Gabriel scowled and swung back around towards Baldur. “Say something like that again and I’ll put my fist through your face.”
“Now boys,” Kali said, narrowing her eyes at Baldur. “Let’s not give them a reason to be angry with us the first night.”
“Aw, come on, just chitchatting with Gabey here!” Baldur said, winking at her.
Kali glared at him. “Fuck off, Baldur.” She turned her attention to the other woman in the room. “Victoria, right?”
Victoria nodded. “Yes. Pleasure to meet you, Kali, Gabriel.”
Gabriel gave her a quick smile and grinned at Kali. “Thanks for keeping me from killing them. Wouldn’t want to get kicked out on my first night. Bad form and all that.”
“You’re welcome, just don’t expect me to help you when it counts,” she said, looking at him.
Gabriel laughed and settled into bed, closing his eyes. “Kali, I would expect nothing else.”
Kali gave him another nod and Gabriel relaxed, flopping back onto his bed. He kicked off both of his shoes. Might as well get settled in and see exactly what Sam had signed him up for.
It was easy to ignore the rest of the insults that were tossed his way by Baldur. Mostly because he was used to it, but more because the prick wasn’t even fucking original with his insults.
Eventually though, Victoria pointed out that they were likely to have an early morning and that they should settle the hell down. Gabriel hid his snicker (though not well) and relaxed back into the bed. Wasn’t anywhere near the comfiest he’d slept in, but it was a bed and there’d been a few years where that had been a luxury.
A snore echoed in the room across from him and he gave a low groan. Of course Baldur or his douchebags had to snore. Of course they did. He closed his eyes and took another deep breath.
Gabriel felt his bed get soaked and had a momentary flash back to sharing the bed with Anna and her wetting the bed before the water covered his thighs. He shoved himself to his feet and watched as the water continued to rise.
“Shower heads!” Kali shouted, diving for their communal bathroom.
Gabriel stared as her and the rest of them all immediately dove for the showers. “You just have to open the bloody door!” He glared at all of them and took a deep breath as the water hit the ceiling before diving for the door.
He yanked on it, hard on the damn door handle. Fucking fuckers not thinking logically. Gabriel turned around and looked at them. They were all managing to breathe somehow with the tubes from the shower heads. Fuck, he might as well.
Wait. He squinted at the window behind them and ignored the burning that was starting in his chest. He was running out of time. He pushed off the door and swam for the window. He debated asking Kali for a breath of air and swam past them, gripping on to the base of the window.
He knew a fucking two-way window when he saw one. And that meant they were being observed and that this was a fucking test. Gabriel focused on the window and punched it, hard.
The glass immediately cracked, more under the pressure of the water than his fist, but fuck if he cared, his vision was starting to get a little darker than he was comfortable with and he wasn’t about to drown here. He slammed his fist into it again. The crack got bigger. Once more.
Water was starting to leak through. Gabriel shifted himself and shoved his foot through the crack before falling through with the cascade of water. The rest of them fell through the window shortly after as the water carried them through.
Gabriel took a few seconds to suck in some much needed air. Fuck. Well that hadn’t been a scare tactic. That’d been about as real as it could fucking get! “Jesus,” he panted, blinking when polished shoes suddenly appeared in his line of vision.
“Kali, Baldur, excellent work. For those of you who are still confused, the u-bend of a toilet can offer an unlimited supply of air should you require it. Simple physics, and worth remembering.”
Gabriel watched as Merlin made some sort of checkmark on the clipboard he was carrying. What, no recognition for actually getting them out of the damn room filled with water?
“Gabriel, great job recognizing that was a two-way mirror-”
Gabriel allowed himself to grin for a minute. Suck on that you overly cultured dicks.
He snapped his attention back to Merlin and froze.
“As far as I am concerned, each and every single one of you has failed. Completely failed. You forgot the most important thing. Teamwork,” Merlin explained, pointing to the broken window.
Gabriel was up on his feet instantly. He padded to the window and stared at the body laying sprawled halfway across the room. Victoria. “Fuck,” he whispered.
Kali came to stand beside him a moment later and he glanced at her. “So much for scare tactics.”
Gabriel was glad when Kali gripped his forearm and gave it a slow squeeze for a second. He took a deep breath and stared at Victoria’s body. None of them had even bothered to check that they had all made it to the showers. He’d swum right by her. Not once. Twice. Gone right past her and hadn’t even fucking noticed.
“It’s all our fault, not just yours,” Kali said, her voice calm. “She signed on, and knew the risks. I think it’s likely she couldn’t swim.”
“She died,” Gabriel snarled.
“She did,” Kali agreed. “But people die every day from their choices Gabriel. This is no different. Maybe we could have saved her, or maybe one of us would have drowned trying to save her. We won’t know, and if you spend too much time regretting what happened today, you will not succeed tomorrow.”
Gabriel exhaled hard and looked up at her, giving a firm nod. Fuck her for being right. Dammit. “Yeah. All right.”
“All right, now that I’ve hammered home exactly how dangerous this job interview can be, does anyone want to leave?” Merlin asked, looking at each of the recruits.
Gabriel shook his head when Merlin’s sharp eyes turned to him. Kali was right. He needed to focus on tomorrow and whatever the hell they were going to do to them next.
Maybe he’d get a chance to play with some spy shit.
Gabriel picked at his jumpsuit and scowled. Fucking hell, did it have to be this pukish yellow color on top of being plaid? Why did the rest of them get more earth-toned colors? He had three jumpsuits in the same color and he wanted to fucking hurl every single time he saw them.
“As some of you may have realized last night, there are no shortcuts to this training, and it will not happen overnight. Becoming a Kingsman agent takes a great deal of patience, time and training. Which is why you are going to pick a puppy.”
Gabriel looked at the dogs in the small cages in front of him and grinned. There were several walking around and pacing in their cages.
“Your puppy will go everywhere with you, and you will train it, care for it, and help it grow. You will find that when your puppy is fully trained, you will be too,” Merlin said, picking up his clipboard and gesturing to the cages. “Now. Choose your puppy.”
Gabriel immediately strode for the cages. There was a German Shepherd in one of the lower cages, and he’d barely been able to sit still. He recognized a listless kindred spirit if there ever was one.
He was halfway to the cages with Kali a step behind him when he looked at the cage beside the German Shepherd he’d had his eyes on. Gabriel froze and stared at the puppy. He was in the very back of the cage, hunched over, his ears drooping. The other candidates were at the cages, picking dogs, debating the merits of each.
Gabriel walked closer, and he couldn’t take his eyes away from the Corgi that was huddled in the back of his cage. With every other puppy that was picked, his ears drooped a little more. He counted the cages. Nine candidates. Twelve puppies. There were always leftovers.
He stopped in front of the cages, distantly registering that the rest of the candidates had picked their puppies. The excited German Shepherd puppy was still in his cage, bouncing and yipping excitedly. Gabriel looked at him and smiled. The Corgi whined and curled up, hiding his face in his side.
Gabriel looked at him. How many times had that little guy been passed over? How many times had he gone unwanted in favor of another breed? He was beautiful.
There really was no decision. He opened the door to the cage and held out his hand. “Hey there,” he said, his voice soft. The Corgi didn’t look at him, so he swallowed and reached out to run his hand slowly down the soft fur on his back. “Hey, mate, come on, I’m picking you.”
The puppy immediately perked up and stared at him. Gabriel couldn’t help the way his heart turned over at the hope in those brown eyes. Fuck, he knew that look. He’d seen it less than twenty-four hours ago in a mirror in a tailor shop. “Come on, yeah, we’ve got to get a move on.”
He had an armful of puppy a moment later, licking enthusiastically at him and Gabriel laughed, clipping the leash to his collar. “All right, yeah, yeah, I’m excited too, let’s go.”
Gabriel settled into his place beside Kali and grinned down at the puppy. He already had a name picked out too. Loki. It suited the little bugger.
“A Corgi?” Kali asked.
Gabriel raised an eyebrow at her and glanced down at her dog. “A poodle?”
Kali met his gaze and smirked. “They’re gun dogs. One of the oldest breeds. Easy to train.”
Gabriel looked back down at Loki and grinned. “A Corgi,” he agreed. He wasn’t about to share his reasoning. He knew what it was like to be left behind. He wasn’t about to let that happen to Loki.
“Excellent. You will all begin training your puppies this afternoon, attending a basic dog behavior class. I suggest you pay attention, as you will not have time for repeated lessons.”
Gabriel swore and looked up at the sky. Fuck. Hopefully these puppies were at least house-trained.