By: Lyn

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WARNINGS: This story contains graphic descriptions of m/m sex.

DISCLAIMER: This fan fic has been written for my own and others’ enjoyment. No profit has been made and no copyright infringement is intended. All characters of The Sentinel are the property of Di Meo, Bilson, Petfly and U/A.

AUTHOR’S NOTES: The title for this story was taken from the song "Lover’s Cross" written and performed by the inspirational Jim Croce.

This is a birthday gift fic for Kira, list mom to a wonderful family. Thank you all for your kindness, encouragement and friendship.

Kira, Thank you for your friendship, love and support. I could not have wished for a better friend.

Happy birthday, Kira.

"Lover’s Cross"

Jim Ellison gave a deep sigh of relief as he inserted the key into his front door. It had been a long unproductive week. He’d been investigating a series of bank robberies that had been occurring up and down the state, culminating in an explosion in a bank in mid town Cascade, which had killed a security guard and a young woman. The Commissioner had been on Simon’s back, pushing for results. That meant that Simon was on Jim’s back, and, Jim was ashamed to admit it, he had been on Blair’s back.

Blair hadn’t even been involved in the case to now. He’d been caught up writing a new chapter for his dissertation and, despite Jim’s groveling and sneaky attempts to get a look, refused to tell Jim what it was about.

Jim opened the door and threw his keys into the basket on the cupboard. Blair looked up from where he sat, cross-legged on the couch, his earphones on. The faint thrum of tribal drums could still be faintly heard. He smiled at his lover and pushed the textbook off his lap, then stood up and stretched gracefully. "Hey, you’re home at last. Get over here and give me a kiss."

Jim’s smile split into a wide grin and he stepped over to the couch, wrapping his strong arms about Blair and leaning in to nuzzle at the soft curls that brushed his forehead.

"You smell," he whispered, "like red wine."

He felt Blair shrug under his embrace. "I cooked fettuccine. What’s a good bolognese without red wine?"

"Mmm, smells good." Jim bent his head and licked slowly along Blair’s upper lip, then traced the bottom. "Tastes good, too."

Blair reached up and cupped the back of Jim’s head in his broad hand and opened his mouth, darting his tongue deeply into his lover’s mouth. Jim moaned softly as Blair mapped his teeth, gums and tongue, going deeper until they were both gasping for breath. Jim pulled back for air, startled when Blair growled and opened his mouth even wider, pressing his lips and teeth deeper and grinding his erection hard into Jim’s hip. Jim withstood it for a moment but Blair’s panicked humping rang alarm bells and he pushed the younger man away, maintaining his contact on both shoulders.

"Whoa, slow down, babe," he panted, licking at his lip where Blair’s teeth had gouged into him. "I appreciate the welcome home but I need to breathe occasionally."

"Sorry. Sorry." Blair took a step backward and almost tumbled back onto the couch, Jim’s hands catching him as he overbalanced.

"Nothing to be sorry for," Jim assured him.

"Oh fuck!" Blair looked horrified. "I bit you. You’re bleeding."

Jim wiped at the split with his index finger, then sucked at the small drop of blood. "It’s okay. No big deal."

He looked closely at his lover. Blair’s skin was pale and sweat sheened, his eyes slightly reddened and his hands shaky. Jim tuned into the heartbeat and respiration and found them both racing. He took a step closer to his lover and held out a hand.

"Blair? What’s wrong? What’s happened?"

Blair raised his eyes from his perusal of the floor rug and bent to gather his books and other paraphernalia. He attempted a smile that didn’t reach his eyes and Jim allowed himself a small moment of panic.

"Nothing’s wrong. I was just glad that you were home. We haven’t seen much of each other lately."

"You’re right there," Jim agreed. "And I plan on making up for that tonight." He leaned in closer and whispered in Blair’s ear. "I am going to fuck you senseless."

Blair straightened and sidestepped along the edge of the couch. "You know what?" he said conversationally. "I am totally wiped, man. It’s been a really busy week." He motioned with his thumb over his shoulder. "I’m just gonna crash for a while. Can I take a rain check on your offer?"

"Sure," Jim agreed. "Blair…"

"Good." Blair nodded and headed toward the bedroom, his old bedroom.

‘Oh fuck.’


"Hmm, what?"

Jim pointed upstairs and after a brief moment of confusion, Blair smiled. "Oh, right." He shrugged, looking sheepish. "Must be more tired than I thought. ‘Night."

"’Night." Jim watched him trudge slowly up the stairs to their shared bedroom then sat down heavily on the couch.

"Oh fuck."


By 4a.m, Jim got up and made his way downstairs to put coffee on. He sat on the balcony, relishing the chill breeze and thought back over the evening. After Blair had gone to bed, Jim had eaten dinner and finished off what was left of the red wine. The fact that there had only been a half glass or so left in the bottle had caused his concerns to skyrocket. There was no way that Blair had poured three quarters of a bottle of wine into the spaghetti sauce but Blair was not a big drinker. Not usually.

Jim had washed the dishes and tidied up. Then, after mindlessly channel surfing for the best part of an hour before he realized that his thoughts and senses were fixed on upstairs, he gave up the pretense and went to bed. He stripped off quietly, not wanting to disturb Blair’s sleep and slipped beneath the covers, automatically spooning up behind his lover. He reached one arm around to pull Blair closer to him and gulped in shock as he felt Blair’s entire body tense at his touch.

"Blair?" Jim whispered, stroking the lightly whiskered cheek next to him.

Blair’s breathing remained even, but his body felt wound tight as a spring and Jim realized with a start that his lover was pretending to be asleep. His mind plagued him with reasons for Blair’s behavior; none of them pleasant and he lay for more than an hour and watched Blair hug the edge of the bed instead of him. Finally, he gave up trying to sleep and opted for an early start to the day. He watched, a knot forming in his gut as Blair curled himself into a tight ball, even pulling his head beneath the sheets.


Watching the way Blair bounced down the stairs the following morning, Jim could have been forgiven for thinking the night before had been a terrible nightmare. He knew better.

"Hey," he said, smiling as Blair strode into the kitchen and sniffed appreciatively at the omelet cooking in the pan.

"Hey yourself." Blair smiled back and reached up to place a soft kiss on Jim’s lips. He busied himself pouring coffee for them both and set the table as Jim carried their plates to the table.

"These are great, man," Blair offered as he took his first bite.

"Thanks," Jim replied. He sat for a moment and watched Blair push the ‘great’ food around his plate for a while then sighed and threw down his napkin. "What’s going on, Sandburg?"

He watched Blair’s eyes dart right, then left and congratulated himself even before Blair opened his mouth.

"Nothing’s wrong, Jim. I told you last night. I’m just a little tired, that’s all. A few hassles at Rainier. God, what some of these football jocks won’t do to keep their grade averages up. What time did Simon want us in?"

‘Busted.’ Jim could spot a Sandburg obfuscation a mile away.

"We’re not due in until 9a.m."

He thought a moment then opened his mouth to tell Blair precisely what he thought of his cock and bull story and was beaten to the punch by the phone.


Jim braced himself against the roof of the ambulance as it lurched into a corner and reached a hand out to soothe Blair as he moaned in pain.

"Easy now. You’re okay. We’ll be at the hospital soon."

He watched Blair’s eyes flutter then close again as he lost consciousness and looked across at the paramedic.

Jack Davis let go of his patient’s wrist and nodded at the detective. "Looking good, detective. He’s going to be fine. The wound’s messy and probably as painful as hell but it looks as though the bullet missed everything vital."

Jim compressed his lips into a fine line and sat back on the bench, keeping one hand clutched in Blair’s as the events of the morning replayed themselves in his mind’s eye.


When the phone rang at breakfast, Blair had flown out of his chair to answer, looking vastly relieved when he recognized Simon’s voice. The bank robbers had struck again, this time abducting a bank manager and his wife from their home and forcing him to open the safe. They’d been caught in the act by the security guard who’d come into work early. He’d managed to escape and raise the alarm. The four perps were holed up in the bank with two hostages and a list of demands as long as Jim’s arm.

By the time Jim and Blair arrived on the scene, Simon was involved in a loud vocal argument with Bill Sykes, the captain in charge of SWAT, who was gearing his men up to charge. Blair, in his usual calm manner suggested to both men that they let Jim get an idea of the situation first before they went off half cocked and killed anyone, including themselves.

Sykes, gave in, still grumbling and Jim felt a thrill of pride as he watched his lover in action, smoothing ruffled feathers and deflating overblown egos. Blair grinned mischievously up at Jim as they walked away toward a corner of the mall, which housed the small bank. Jim laughed back and swatted him on the head, knowing that Simon was watching, not wanting Simon to know there was more to it than he saw. Not yet.

They crept carefully as close to the building as they could, and Jim positioned himself at the end wall, just shy of the big window that looked out onto the parking lot, tucking Blair behind him, safe. He extended his hearing, feeling Blair’s hand on the small of his back, warm through his shirt, grounding him. Five heartbeats, all pounding and unnaturally fast. Not surprising, he thought, considering the circumstances.

Five heartbeats? No, wait, that had to be wrong. And then he knew, in a gut wrenching split second as he felt Blair turn slightly then he was somehow in front of him, arms extended. Before he could react, he felt Blair slam into him so hard that both were driven to the ground in a tangle of arms and legs and blood.

After the single explosive gunshot, there was absolute silence and then everything went to hell. Jim clawed his way up from the ground and knelt on the ground, cradling Blair to him, murmuring assurances and trying to staunch the flow of blood that seeped through their entwined fingers and dripped onto the ground.

He watched dispassionately as the man who had shot Blair was felled by a bullet in his head and the other thieves were brought out handcuffed and followed by a weeping, grateful middle aged couple. He turned back to comforting Blair as the paramedics surged forward at the all clear and pulled Blair from his arms, administering first aid and IV’s and then placing him on a gurney for the rush to hospital. He looked away from the dawning comprehension and faint look of shock in Simon’s eyes as it all came together and he saw the situation for what it was.

Simon walked alongside him as he trailed the stretcher, one hand still firmly clutched in Blair’s.

"How’s he look?"

Jim shrugged, not trusting himself to speak.

"Damn fool kid. Throwing himself in front of you like that."

"He’ll be okay," Jim finally said, not sure if he was consoling himself or Simon.

"Yeah, and when he’s up to it, I’m gonna kick his ass," Simon growled.

"Get in line, sir," Jim answered, his voice cracking.

"I’ll catch up with you at the hospital. I’d better try to contain this before it’s all over the TV."

"Too late," Jim said, motioning at the Channel Four News car pulling up.





Jim looked up in surprise at the familiar sound of his father’s voice.

"Dad? What are you doing here?" Jim stood from his cramped position in the hard waiting room chair and strode toward his father. He caught him by the arms and looked him over carefully. "Is Sally all right? Stevie?"

William Ellison shook his head impatiently and shrugged out of his son’s grasp. "We’re all fine. It was on the news about the bank robbery and they said you’d been shot. Are you okay?" It was Ellison Senior’s turn to peruse his son and he looked up, confused.

"I wasn’t shot, dad," Jim said tiredly. "Blair was. They’re working on him now." He led his father back to the bank of chairs in the ER waiting room and slumped down once more, resting his head in his hands. "One of the thieves sneaked out through the back entrance of another shop. Blair was behind me. He saw the perp bring his gun up to fire and threw himself in front of me."

"Oh God." William sat down heavily in an adjoining chair.

"The doctor said he’ll be fine. He lost a lot of blood and the wound is going to take quite a few stitches, maybe some plastic surgery at a later date. But it missed his lung and heart and didn’t hit any major blood vessels. They’re keeping him here for a day or so. Then I can take him home."

He cursed the words silently even as he said them as he watched the accusation and disgust flare in his father’s eyes. "So, it’s true then," William whispered. "What he told me."


William nodded. "He told me he was in love with you and you with him."

Jim stood up, anger tensing his shoulders. "When did you speak to Blair?" Then realization flooded through him as he thought back on Blair’s behavior from the night before. "Oh God. What did you do?"

William had the grace to look uncomfortable. "I was trying to protect you," he said, pleading for understanding.

Then he straightened, unconsciously copying his son’s stance and glared at Jim’s glowering countenance. "I had heard certain …things," he cleared his throat, "I have contacts."

His voice changed to that of a wheedling child and grated on Jim’s nerves. "I thought he was using you, Jimmy. I looked into his background. A single mother, no permanent address, no means of support. He needed somewhere to live and you were kind enough to take him in. He’s a student, doesn’t earn a living, and has student loans and debts up to his neck. And there you were; Police officer of the year, earning good money, though you’d earn more if you’d just push for promotion. Not to mention a very attractive legacy awaiting you upon my death."

He paused and reached out to grip Jim’s shoulders, shaking him slightly. "It seemed obvious that he was using you to get to your money. It’s happened before. I didn’t understand why else you and he would be…"

"What did you do?" Jim asked again, his voice shaky.

"I phoned him yesterday. I asked him to leave town, made him a very attractive offer as a matter of fact. I told him that I was a good friend of the Dean at the University of California. He owes me a favor. I offered him a position there plus a substantial sum to assist with relocation. He refused at first. Told me that you were in love with him." William’s mouth wrinkled in distaste. "He said that if he were to leave, it would kill you both."

"He was right," Jim said softly. Then he looked up. "What do you mean at first?"

William Ellison squared his jaw. "I explained to him that something like this could ruin you. I tried to make him see what he could do to your career if something like this got out. Then I told him that while he was living with you, I would have nothing to do with you. I lost my temper. I told him that as far as I was concerned, you were dead and Steven felt the same way. He told me he’d think about my offer and call me back."

William slumped back down into the chair, looking suddenly twenty years older. "Then I heard over the radio that you’d been shot and I came straight here. Jim…"

Jim’s head cocked to one side then he wheeled abruptly away from his father and headed for the trauma rooms. "I’ve got to go," he called back over his shoulder. "Blair’s asking for me. We’ll talk later." He made it a promise.


Jim placed a hand on Blair’s uninjured shoulder and pushed him back gently against the pillows. "You’re staying," he said firmly.

Blair sighed and rolled his eyes. "I told you I’m fine. I have things to do, Jim." He struggled from under his partner’s grip and sat up, swinging his legs over the side of the bed.

"The doctor said you’re not fine," Jim argued.


"No," Jim said. "You’re staying."

"Jim, I’m gonna…"

"Oh man. Here, quick." Jim placed the emesis bowl under Blair’s mouth as his stomach protested his sudden moves. He waited until the heaving finished, then pushed Blair back once more onto the bed, covering him with the blanket and reaching for a damp cloth to wipe his brow. "You want to argue some more?" Jim smiled as he leaned down to place a kiss on Blair’s warm forehead.

He looked over his shoulder as he heard the door open. His look of curiosity was replaced by one of rage and he stood up and turned to face his father. "I said we’d talk later," he said, his anger barely repressed.

William pushed the door open the rest of the way and came in. "I wanted to apologize," he said.

"It’s not me you should be apologizing to," Jim answered.

He looked back as Blair struggled up, wincing, accepting Jim’s helping hand with a smile.

"It’s okay." The voice was shaky but the deep blue eyes held a challenge. "Let him say what he needs to say, Jim."

William walked over to the bed and held out his hand, waiting for Blair to place his IV laden one in his. "Mr. Sandburg… Blair, I…" He paused and took a breath. "Admitting I’m wrong does not come easily to me nor to any Ellison. It’s not the way we were raised. I have never had anyone who loved me enough to sacrifice his or her own life for mine. I find that concept overwhelming and a little frightening. I’m sorry, Blair, for having offended you by my actions and my words. And I want to thank you for saving my son’s life."

Blair nodded and accepted William’s handshake. "Jim’s saved my life more times than I can count, Mr. Ellison. I love him."

"I still can’t accept this relationship of yours." He held up a hand as Jim began to protest. "No, Jim, I’m sorry, but I believe this behavior to be morally and ethically wrong and you will not change my mind on that. Having said that, I am willing to accept that this is the lifestyle you have chosen for yourself and I will respect that choice. That doesn’t mean that I have to like it."

"It’s not a lifestyle, Dad," Jim said quietly. He sat on the side of the bed and pulled a reluctant Blair toward him defiantly. "It’s my life. It’s our life."

William nodded. "You and Blair are both welcome at the house anytime, Jimmy. As a matter of fact, Steven is bringing his new lady friend over for dinner on Saturday night." He turned to look at Blair. "Do you think you’d be recovered enough by then to join us all for dinner."

Blair looked up at Jim. "Why don’t we get back to you later in the week when we’ve all had some time to think things through?"

"Fair enough," William agreed. "I’ll leave you to get some rest. Take care and thank you again."


"Damn it, Sandburg! Will you leave the bag there? I said I’d come back for it. Christ, what do you carry in this backpack anyway? Bricks?"

"Just the usual, Jim. Look, it’s fine. I can manage a small overnight bag, for God’s sake. Oh! Ow! Ow! I’ll just leave the bag here for you, man."

"Go sit down, Sandburg."

"Yes, mother."

Jim shook his head in mock anger as he watched Blair shuffle over to the couch and sit down. He deposited the backpack in Blair’s old room and then turned back to retrieve the overnight bag Blair had left at the top of the stairs.

"It really was pretty nice of your dad to send the flowers and stuff," Blair said.

"I guess," Jim answered as he walked into the kitchen to put water on for tea.

"No, really," Blair continued. "I think it took a lot of courage for him to apologize and then thank me for saving your life. You didn’t thank me. You just yelled at me and then moved aside so Simon could tear me a new one as well."

Jim walked over and knelt in front of his lover. He leaned forward and kissed the lush lips. "I could thank you now, if you want."

Blair pretended to think. "Okay," he agreed. He stood up and pushed Jim down onto the couch, then straddled his lap. He reached down and stroked the hard length of Jim’s cock through his pants. "Very okay."

Reaching up with his good arm, he pulled the sling over his head then rested his injured arm by hooking it around Jim's neck.

"You’re supposed to keep that arm supported," Jim said in exasperation.

Blair scratched the back of Jim’s neck with his fingers. "It is supported," he argued.

Blair reached down between them and pushed his hand under the waistband of Jim’s pants, reaching for the hot hard shaft and began to pump it steadily. Jim moaned and leaned back, arching his hips up and sliding a hand beneath Blair's shirt to scratch through the soft chest hair and stroke a soft nipple to hardness.

Blair continued to pump Jim’s cock steadily, bringing him to the edge of orgasm before Jim had the presence of mind to reach down and still his hand. "I thought I was supposed to be thanking you," he panted.

"Oh, you are. Trust me," Blair answered with a smile. Jim groaned as his lover slipped off his lap and reached into the pocket of his pants, grinning as he held a condom and a tube of lube aloft triumphantly.

Jim’s eyes widened in shock. "You had that with you in the hospital?"

"Hey, a guy can dream, can’t he?"

Blair handed the lube and condom to Jim, then leaned forward and kissed him. "Want to help me get rid of these clothes?"

"I can do that."

Jim unzipped Blair’s jeans and pulled them and his boxers off, bestowing a quick kiss to the tip of his erect cock before he stood to slide the shirt from his body, taking care not to jostle Blair’s injured shoulder. He rubbed a gentle finger over the reddened scar tissue still held together with a row of tiny stitches. Blair reached for his hand and brought it to his lips. "It’s okay," he assured him. "I’m okay, we’re okay."

Jim took a deep breath and nodded. He stripped off his own clothes then collapsed onto the couch as Blair shoved him backward. He watched as Blair climbed back up onto the sofa to kneel astride Jim’s legs, facing away from him. "Get me ready, babe. I can’t do this one handed."

Jim nodded and squeezed a generous amount of lube onto his hands before reaching around Blair to stroke gently at his lover’s weeping erection. Blair sighed and began to move slightly back and forth in counterpoint to Jim’s motions. He waited until he felt Jim’s other hand begin to trail down the cleft of his ass, then he leaned further forward, his injured shoulder cushioned on Jim’s upper thigh, his body stretched languorously along Jim’s lap like a satisfied cat.

He moaned as he felt a slick finger push gently past the sphincter of his ass and begin to stroke softly in and out. "So good, babe, so good," he whispered.

Slowly Jim stretched his lover, working up to three fingers, watching dry mouthed, his cock screaming for attention as his fingers circled and stroked in and out of the loosened hole.

As Jim pulled his fingers away and tore open the condom wrapper, Blair suddenly sat up and turned around to face his lover then bent and lapped at the small drops of pre-ejaculate that oozed glistening from the slit of Jim’s cock. He looked up at his lover and smiled, licking his lips in satisfaction. "Now, Jim."

Blair reached behind and grasped Jim’s cock then lowered himself so the tip just touched the entrance to his body. Jim could feel the muscles beginning to clench already and forced himself to wait and not thrust up into the welcome heat. Blair lowered himself slowly, pausing now and then to allow his internal muscles to adjust to Jim’s bulk. Finally, his ass was resting on Jim’s lap and he sat still for a moment. "I love you," he whispered.

"I love you too," Jim replied. He placed his hands on Blair’s hips and began to slowly raise and lower him onto his cock. He watched as Blair threw his head back in ecstasy and began to undulate above him, moving his ass in a circular motion. Jim began to thrust upward hard as Blair moved downward until both were thrusting frantically in counter time. Jim reached for Blair’s leaking cock and pumped it hard, delighting in the feel of the hot, slippery come that gushed from his lover onto his hand moments before he shot his load into his partner’s clenching channel.

Blair slumped forward and rested his head on Jim’s heaving chest. "You’re welcome," he said, chuckling. Both men were silent a moment, gathering their wits and strength before Blair spoke again.

"So, do you want to go to this dinner party your dad’s having?"

"Do you?"



"Do you think I could accept his apology and still hold onto my righteous anger for a little while longer?"

"Sure, you can. You’re entitled."




"Can I thank you again?"





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