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Title: When the Sky Falls
Author: HawkEyesPrime
Disclaimer: This author does not own any of the characters or locations or even the plot of this story. She does not make any money off this work of fiction.
Summary: Skyfall AU. Ten years ago, Quinn (Q) and James met, fell in love and got married. What neither of them knew was that they both worked for MI6. When James, on a mission to Bolivia, captures a snapshot of his husband chasing a known terrorist over rooftops, confronts him. The resulting fight sent Q fleeing the house and unable to reach James, M sends Q to Istanbul after a missing hard drive.

Read it at My AO3

Part 3


~*~

Quinn had directed James to the warehouse complex where Quinn’s things had been put into storage after the botched mission in Istanbul. As James killed the engine, Quinn and M got out of the car and Quinn began to unlock the gate.

“I’m not sleeping in there, if that’s what you’re planning,” M said waspishly.

“We’re changing cars,” Quinn said as he shoved the door wide open and flicked on a light.

James knew immediately what they were here for. He remembered far too well how much it had hurt to drive that car; the same vehicle that he and Quinn often laughed about whenever they parked together; taking simple joy in the innocuous hilarity of seeing a 2003 Jaguar and a vintage Aston Martin parked side by side in the garage.

When Quinn and James had gotten married ten years ago, Q—Boothroyd that is—had given Quinn the modified and weaponized 2003 Jaguar X-Type as a wedding present. When Quinn had been shot in Turkey, Boothroyd had driven Alec and James to Quinn’s flat so they could sort his effects and it had been James who had driven the Jaguar to the warehouse to be put into storage.

James remembered how choked up he had been when he looked more closely and finally noticed the similarities to his Aston Martin, because Boothroyd, brilliant as he was, was predictable in how he weaponized cars. He found the eject button hidden in the gearshift and the switches and dials that controlled concealed weaponry and the panels that hid updated GPS and on-board computers. James had dug around in the interior and found a personalized Sig Sauer tucked into the underside of the driver’s seat, a dozen throwing knives in the glove compartment, and a button in the trunk that would raise the false bottom to reveal a small armory.

It had been the miniature armory that told James the most about Quinn, who was good at working with his hands, but was also a very good shot if the half dozen different sniper rifles and scopes were any indication. There were grappling hooks and air rifles and dart guns. He’d even found a water pistol meant to shoot acid and small caliber handguns. There were a ridiculous number of knives and of all things, an actual set of Japanese swords. He’d even found no less than four burner phones and three state-of-the-art laptops.

James had felt absurdly proud at what he learned about his husband from the armory, because it meant that Quinn was good at what he did, and was especially well suited to the type of missions that required him to either get in close or kill from a distance. James had felt so proud of Quinn and the things the car told him his husband had accomplished and was capable of, but he was also sad that Quinn would never be able to share this with him. This better understanding of his husband had been what had broken James the most, the knowledge that they would never talk about this unknowingly shared secret that had lain between them. They would never be able to talk without any secrets between them. There would always be this; the type of agents that they were but never knew; that would be between them, and James had been left behind to live with this knowledge.

It had hurt.

It had hurt so much that James had been hard pressed not to activate the car’s self-destruct protocols and sit inside as he and the car went up in a ball of flames.

But he hadn’t. He hadn’t been able to bring himself to destroy all he had left of Quinn. And as he watched Quinn pull the tarp off his car, James felt weary. What good luck that he hadn’t killed himself at his lowest, because what would Quinn have come home to?

Quinn grinned, “James, you’re driving. I’ll lay down some breadcrumbs for Silva to follow as we go. Get in the car, M.”

Green eyes gleamed in the dim light, and James felt a swell of love so strong that he would have staggered if he were not still leaning against the car they’d essentially kidnapped M with.

“Brilliant boy,” he murmured, stalking to his husband and pulling him close, “My brilliant, beautiful boy,” James murmured into riotous black curls, “Wherever would I be without you?”

“Dead in a ditch possibly,” Quinn said pithily, “Now stop pawing at me and get in the car, Mr. Bond.”

James laughed and pressed a kiss to his temple before doing as he was told. M was already in the backseat as Quinn tossed in a blanket and climbed into the front passenger seat with his laptop bag. He drove the car out of the warehouse and left Quinn lock the gate before getting into the car and opening his laptop.

“Isn’t there already GPS in this car?” James asked when he realized that Quinn was creating a digital trail, “There should be since it’s a—well, we can’t exactly call it new now can we?”

“Shut up, James,” Quinn said without heat, “and yes, there is GPS in this car. Normally it would be enabled from Q Branch, but I disabled that particular function ages ago when I went off grid in Bucharest. If this car is tracked, it’s only because I want it to be.”

“Where are we going then?” James asked.

Quinn’s fingers stilled on the keys. “I should think that was obvious,” he drawled, “We’re going to Skyfall. You promised to show me your childhood home, remember? Now is your chance.”

“So demanding,” James sighed, “How have I never notice what a high maintenance little shit you are?”

“Because you were too enamored with my mouth and my hands,” Quinn quipped.

In the backseat, M sighed, “Stop flirting, the both of you. You’re making me ill.”

Both men laughed and the drive was silent but for the clicking of laptop keys.

~*~

Once at Skyfall, the three stepped slowly into the house, James at the front, M in the middle and Quinn to watch their backs. As they entered the lodge, Quinn could understand how James could have grown into the man that he was. The house was large, dark, and hard while the moors were damp and featureless.

There was a footstep from the depths of the house and Quinn and James immediately reached for their guns. James took several cautious steps forward and Quinn moved to place his body between M and whoever might appear.

“Who goes there?” an old man carrying a shot gun emerged from the shadows asked a gruff voice. James’ shoulders relaxed slight as the old man lowered his shotgun slightly. “Well,” he said, “If it isn’t James Bond.”

“Good gods, man,” James said as he strode forward, “are you still alive?”

The two men laughed and embraced briefly and James turned toward M and Quinn. “This is Kincade,” he said, “He’s been here as Gamekeeper for as long as I can remember.” He reached forward and drew Quinn toward him, “Kincade, this is Quinn. My husband.”

Quinn gave James an incredulous look while Kincade said wryly, “I know. I was at the wedding.”

James went silent and Quinn smiled gently, brushing his hand down James’ arm reassuringly. “I’m sorry about James,” Quinn said to Kincade, “I came back from the dead less than a week ago and James is still getting used to it.”

Kincade blinked and nodded slowly.

James cleared his throat. “M,” he said, “meet Kincade. Kincade, this is M.”

“Pleased to meet you, Emma,” Kincade said as he shook M’s hand.

“The pleasure is mine,” M replied.

“So,” Kincade turned to James, “What brings you to Skyfall? Never thought you’d come back here after the wedding, especially when that one,” he tilted his chin at Quinn who had the good grace to look abashed, “died.”

“Some men are coming to kill us,” Quinn replied.

“And we are going to kill them first,” James declared, blue eyes flinty.

“Well,” Kincade said after a pause, “let’s get started then.”

~*~

Once all the preparations to trap Skyfall had been finished, Quinn had sent a message to Tanner. He then blocked all further communications from MI6, unwilling to leave his or James and M’s lives in the hands of the incompetent new Quartermaster. From there, there was nothing left to do but wait. There was possibly time for a quickie, but James and Quinn were professionals and the situation was far too volatile to risk being caught with their pants down.

If they survived what was to come though, well, there would be plenty of time for that. Their marriage was damaged, but they were Double-Ohs and they could work together. They would cooperate and treat each other as colleagues rather than life partners to protect M and keep her safe, and then they would deal with repairing their relationship after. Neither man intended to die in the back end of nowhere in the Scottish highlands. They would survive, come hell or high water.

Everything was ready. Skyfall had been trapped in such a way that they would likely have to spend thousands of pounds to repair. M was seated on a cloth covered chaise in a drawing room while Kincade was in the kitchen. James and Quinn stood shoulder to shoulder in the door of the drawing room, arguing quietly about who would man the Jaguar outside. Quinn was determined to do it on grounds that it was his car and James was unwilling to let Quinn take such a risky position, Double-Oh or not.

In the end, Silva’s men put an end to the argument when they arrived and Kincade called the warning. James was the one to make it out of the house and into the Jaguar first, to Quinn’s dismay, and Quinn huffed but went back inside to take his position one of the side doors.

~*~

When there is a lull in the fighting, or to be accurate, when the Director of MI6, two Double-Oh agents, and an aging Gamekeeper kill all of Silva’s advance guard, they put away the gun collection in favor of the guns Silva’s men were no longer using. Quinn takes the time to pack his arsenal back into the Jaguar for safekeeping.

None of them are hurt, except for M, but it’s a flesh wound and the bleeding stops after a bit of pressure is applied.

“Are you sure you’re alright?” Quinn asks quietly later. “There is a first aid kit in the bath and I can fetch it if you need it.”

“For goodness sake, Quinn,” M says, exasperated, “who is the mother here, me or you? I said I’m fine. My pride stings a bit, but I never was the best shot.”

Quinn studied his mother, though no one knew except maybe Mallory and Tanner, and nodded his acceptance. “If you’re sure, M.”

Suddenly, they hear something distinctly out of place on the Scottish moors: Music.

“Is that AC-DC?” Quinn wondered out loud, “It seems Silva has a sense of humor.”

James glanced out the window and cursed in Russian, drawing everyone’s attention toward him. “Behind the wall!” he barked.

They all move to comply, and not a moment too soon, because once the sound of rotors can be heard over the music, the Lodge is peppered with bullets. The projectiles rip apart the shutters and the furniture. Quinn quickly calculates the trajectory and realizes that the helicopter is going to keep shooting while it circles the house. They’re sitting ducks because the wall doesn’t provide very much cover. But there is a corner in the kitchen that would.

“Into the corner!” Quinn shouted, pushing M toward the kitchen.

James gets the idea at the same time and drags M with him. Kincade and Quinn follow. Quinn does not get behind cover quite quickly enough, because he feels hot searing pain in his side just as he crams into the alcove with the others. He gives no indication of the pain and is grateful that his jacket is dark in color and for the poor light inside the house. If he does up his buttons, the wound will not be visible. Outside, the shooting stops.

“Well,” he says, voice strained, “that was fun. Let’s not do that again.”

James chuckled breathlessly, “It’s in the job description to get shot at, Quinn.”

“Shove it, you old dog,” Quinn retorted, “Kincade, get M out of the house. James and I will meet you both in the chapel once we’ve dealt with Silva.”

Kincade and M quickly left the alcove for the library. James shifted and placed his hands on Quinn’s shoulders, gently turning him to face him. Faintly, they hear Silva shouting outside.

“You’re bleeding.”

Quinn cursed inwardly. Apparently, James was more perceptive than he’d thought. Well, no point hiding, and said, “Yes.”

James studied him briefly and said, “You should go with M and Kincade.”

“James-“ Quinn protested and James laid a finger on his lips.

“No, listen to me,” James said, “They might not make it across the moor unmolested. Someone has to be with them. Kincade is an old man and M hasn’t been on the field in ages. I swear I won’t take any risks, but I can’t lose you, not a second time.”

Quinn lunged forward and grabbed James’s lapels and dragged him down to capture his lips. He feels James’s hands slide off his shoulders and down his arms and snake round his waist even as James nips at his lips, desperate and hungry. They part.

“Don’t you dare die on me, James Bond,” Quinn whispers.

“Ressurection is my specialty,” James murmured.

Quinn nodded and pulled away. Moments later, James is standing in the alcove alone. Clatter cuts through the silence and James turns as a grenade explodes in the hall. James darts through the kitchen toward the pantry where the kerosene is kept. He grabs the last stick of dynamite while he hauls the two large canisters into the library and takes only a breath to mourn his father’s books before he starts winding the fuse around the canisters. Outside, he hears gunshots ricocheting off the armored panels of Quinn’s Jaguar. The explosion catches him by surprise and his face hardens when he realizes that Boothroyd’s wedding present for him and Quinn had just been destroyed. James hopes Silva survives, if only because he looks forward to seeing the revenge Quinn would deal out for that particular insult. He lights the fuse and makes his way to the priest hole. Just before ducking into the tunnels, he takes one last look at his childhood home.

“I never liked this place anyway,” he mutters and bolts into the tunnels.

~*~

TBC


Part 2
Part 4
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