Author: Skylla
Title: By the Book
Characters: Autolycus/Caesar
Rating: NC-17
Summary: Autolycus realizes that not everything works out the way it's supposed to.
This rating is for explicit m/m sex and some language.

The character belong to Studios USA and Renaissance Pictures and were used without permission. No copyright infringement was intended and no money was made.

This story contains explicit descriptions of male/male sexual relations and some potentially offensive language.


By the Book
by Skylla

Autolycus prided himself on being a methodical man, the kind of guy who never lost his head, stayed cool under fire and all that bit – it was partly what made him the King of Thieves. Now, however, he admitted that he was dangerously close to losing all of his self-control and swearing his head off, and all because of some priestess. Okay, she was a sexy, powerful, High Priestess of Aphrodite, with a smile like Cleopatra's and a voice like Xena's. And she had specifically sent him an invitation for the week she stayed at Caesar's palace to discuss the new temple Caesar wanted. In fact, she had all but dared him to sneak into the palace. But really, bragging rights weren't worth this much.

First there had been the guards. Those should have been easy; he got past guards all the time, and Xena had never mentioned that these guards were anything but the goons most warlords hired. For some reason, however, Caesar wasn't like most warlords, and his goons were top of the line. They had pointed out that his masterful disguise was really a bed sheet, his accent inconsistent, and his hunch faked. That had hurt, but at least they didn't know who he was. Then, when he had tried to get in through the lower levels, the maids had all seen him. He had played his usual card – Charming Bad Boy – but they had only giggled and refused to tell him anything. "You're wasting your time, Mister King of Thieves," they'd said in bad Greek.

Now, to top it all off, the dam – err, frustrating window wouldn't open. He'd climbed three stories, nearly falling three times, to get to the most random window he could find, hoping it wasn't the room of some really important guest that would have guards stationed at the door. And now the window was closed. Caesar must be the only warlord in the world who kept his windows closed on such a steamy summer night. *Now, don't swear, Auto, you've almost got it – there.* The thief slipped into the bedroom and had to bite down on another curse. This had just gone from bad to worse.

There was a man in the corner of the room, contemplating him from the darkness, sitting rather languidly on an ornate chair. *He's gorgeous.* The thought popped into his head randomly. Or he would be gorgeous, Autolycus amended, if it weren't for the fact that he was a violent psychopath. Cool green eyes stared at him from arching black brows as the madman brought his fingers together like all scheming tyrants eventually did. Was there some sort of manual for this job? The Idiot's Guide to Being a Merciless Warlord, maybe? Perhaps there was some sort of assembly that decided the rules – the Villains' Convention, or something like that. He'd have to ask Xena the next time he saw her.

"She's downstairs, probably expecting you." Caesar's cold voice snapped Autolycus out of his nonsensical musings. Right, Auto, focus. Priorities – escape the tyrant, find the girl, and then pontificate on the guidelines for being a Bad Guy. "What?"

"Agrippina. The priestess. Downstairs. Atrium." Caesar talked like he was dealing with some sort of idiot. Of course, he had just broken into the bedroom of one of the most feared men in the Known World, the man whose reputation for cruelty was nearly as great as the rumors about his sexual appetite. He couldn't really blame the guy for mistaking him for an idiot, right?

"You mean, you're just going to let me go see her? Just like that?" Great, now he was talking like an idiot too.

Caesar shrugged, his eyes never leaving Autolycus. "You didn't need to sneak in, you know. I told the guards to expect you after Agrippina mentioned her… relationship with you. All you had to do was say who you were."

The maids. That's why they had been laughing. And all he'd had to do was tell the guards… He refused to show his shock and made confidence enter his tone. And a little note of kissing up, just to be safe. "Surely, as a man of your… reputation, you know the uses a good entrance has." Of course, he hadn't exactly made a very good entrance, but it was the thought that counted, right?

Caesar smiled, and those eyes lit up. Not a happy, cheerful, Gabriellish type light up, but more of a possessed, obsessed, demonic Evil Man sort of light up. Maybe that was in the Guide Book too. It freaked him out either way – who knew what a guy like Caesar was thinking. "Yes, of course. Pity you didn't manage one. But like I said – she's downstairs, screaming at my maids and smashing my vases."

"Bad time, then?"

The Roman shrugged. "You might say that. She's just mad at me because she thinks I'm a conniving backstabber – which is, of course, an outrageous lie." The amused sarcasm and blunt self-judgment confused Autolycus for a moment. Wait a minute! That couldn't be in the guide book, could it? "I guess I'll be leaving then." He backed up toward the window slowly.

"Feel free to use the door." More of that dry humor. What a bas- what a jerk. And confusing too. "Aren't you afraid I'll steal something?"

Another shrug. "Like what? There is nothing you could steal that I can't easily replace. Except my wife's heart, of course." A glare that nearly approached Xena's.

"But not the priestess's?" Like he was stupid enough to sleep with Caesar's wife… well, maybe if she were hot enough and he knew he could steal a ruby or something at the same time. *No, bad idea. Don't flirt with Caesar's wife and next time pick another window.*

Another smile, but this one was less creepy. "She can take care of herself."

Autolycus bet she could. "Guess I'll be leaving then."

"Goodbye." Caesar started to light one of the lamps on the desk, looking ready to turn to the mountain of paperwork before him.

Autolycus turned to go, and then paused. Now hang on just a second. This couldn't be Caesar. The man was the madman of Rome , the conqueror with a destiny to rule the world, the man who cut off the arms of his prisoners to discourage the enemy. His orgies were legendary. Heck, even Xena, albeit a very drunk Xena, had once admitted that Caesar was good in bed, if a total control freak. And the man hadn't even called the guards on him, even though he'd just broken into his bedroom? Or at least hit on him? This could not be Julius Caesar. "Who are you?" Autolycus demanded with authority that surprised him.

Caesar seemed vaguely irritated at the sudden outburst. "My name is Caesar. And you are Autolycus. Why is that confusing?"

Good question. Autolycus, his wit already crushed by the laughing maids, stumbled for words and wound up saying the first thing that came to his mind. "You – you just don't act like I thought you would." *That's right, Auto, order the man around and then say you're disappointed with him. Brilliant. No wonder you've lasted so long in this business.* How close was he to that window? Was Caesar armed?

Caesar looked surprised now, then bored, and then like Xena when she met up with something that disgusted her and she had to talk to it. Now he was in for it. "I see. You were probably expecting something more like…" He stood and stalked toward Autolycus slowly, making sure his sandals echoed his footsteps. Caesar stopped an inch away from the thief's face, his dark eyes boring into him. "This? And then…" A cold hand trailed down Autolycus' chest. It left as Caesar clasped his hands behind his back and circled the thief slowly. Autolycus didn't move. "And a line like: So this is the renowned King of Thieves." Caesar came to a stop in front of the thief again, and his fingertips traced Autolycus' jaw, forcing him to stare head on into those now completely soulless eyes. "I look forward to watching you scream after I've had your hands chopped off in the arena."

Autolycus shivered. This had just gone from strange and embarrassing to frightening and creepy. It was definitely by the book, and he definitely didn't like it.

"And then, of course," that cold voice continued mercilessly, "I'd push you onto the bed, like this, and pin you down." His grip was iron, and not the iron he liked, the kind that made locks and chains, things he could escape. "And since I'm such an evil bastard, I'd rape you and cum at the sight of your blood." Hard lips descended on Autolycus', smothering his protests. He really, really, didn't want this. This was terrifying, and not in an exciting way. How had he screwed this up so badly? All he'd wanted was a good lay with a hot girl, and now he was trapped under a sadistic tyrant. He'd even been given the chance to leave, but no, Mister Cool Under Fire King of Thieves couldn't just go, could he? He had to question his luck, didn't he? Gods, he really was an idiot.

Finally Caesar withdrew. "Is this what you wanted? Hmm? Answer me, thief."

"No," Autolycus managed. Another brilliant witticism.

"Of course not. But I bet you'd enjoy something a little less… Caesarian, something like this." Caesar's hands abandoned their death grip on Autolycus' wrists for a hold on his shoulders. Those lips descended again, but this time they were soft, exploratory instead of conquering. He was so startled he forgot to resist when that skillful tongue slipped past his lips and met his own. Their tongues rolled around each other, and Autolycus let his hands wander, feeling the smooth muscle under the immaculate toga. When Caesar withdrew again he found himself with his arms wrapped around the conqueror. More importantly, his cock had also taken an interest in the proceedings.

Caesar grinned, leering and triumphant. "More your style, I assume?"

He hoped that little laugh didn't sound too nervous. "You sure you're not going to kill me?" *Autolycus, you fool, you're supposed to be steering away from that subject. Priorities man, remember?*

"Hardly. I couldn't."

"Because I'm such a brilliant thief you would be ashamed to kill me?" There was always hope.

Caesar snorted. Wow, the man could even snort condescendingly. "Yeah, right. No, Rex Furorum, I can't kill you for three reasons. The first is Agrippina. The second is Cleopatra, and the third is Xena." Caesar gave him a once over. "That and you're cute."

Now that was uncalled for. Violent psychopath or no, nobody called him cute. "Excuse me, Mister Divide and Conquer, but let me correct you on that last one. I am not cute. I am suave, charming, and devilishly handsome. I am in control and cool under fire and never swear. I am irresistibly sex- mmmph." Caesar was kissing him again, in that really good way that was nothing like it was supposed to be. "This isn't in the book," he muttered when Caesar let him breath finally.

"What are you talking about?" Caesar asked, irritable again, as he started to strip, revealing a hard, toned body and an even harder cock. Autolycus followed suite numbly. Well at least his cock knew how to handle the situation. It was directing his hands to take off his vest and his pants. His mind seemed incapable of anything but running around in nonsensical circles. "The book. The book that tells you how to be a warlord."

Caesar stared at him like he'd just suggested world peace, and then laughed. "Yeah, well, I never did like to go by the rules. Come here." They moved fully onto the bed, and Autolycus saw, or felt really, that Caesar's hands had warmed up considerably. He groaned when they reached his now hard cock. There was something he was forgetting. Oh, right. Xena. Crucifixion. Caesar Evil Man. "I'm not supposed to do this."

"Do what?" Caesar's tongue began laving his nipples, and Autolycus arched into the touch.

"Sleep with you."

"Why, is it not in the book?"

"What book?"

There was that demonic smile again. "The book that tells you how to be a thief." Caesar nipped on Autolycus' nipple and made the thief gasp.

Well, if Xena could sleep with him, Autolycus could, his cock reasoned. And besides, it wasn't like they were plotting to rule the world together. He was just adapting to his surroundings, avoiding Caesar's wrath by placating him until he could escape. Yeah, that would work. Now what was this conversation about? Oh, right. "Yeah, well, I never did go by the rules." Autolycus waited for another comeback, hoping he would still be coherent enough to answer it, when Caesar's mouth descended onto his cock, and all his thoughts vanished. By the gods, Caesar might be a sadistic madman, but he could give a blowjob like no one else. That maddening tongue twirled around the head of his cock, and then it did this really weird rippling thing up and down his shaft. The pressure increased suddenly, almost painfully, as Caesar sucked hard, letting his teeth rub ever so lightly along his cock. Autolycus arched his back, gripping the linen sheets and trying to thrust up, only to feel Caesar's hands on his hips, steadying him, controlling him. He nearly whimpered in frustration, and then really did whimper, but in ecstasy, as his cock slid all the way down Caesar's throat. Holy Mother of Zeus.

He was going to cum soon. He could feel it. Almost there… Suddenly the warm sensation disappeared. What?

"Wouldn't want you to finish before we started," Caesar purred. Autolycus looked at the Roman's leaking cock. Well, at least the man wasn't smug for no reason. Autolycus gripped the hard shoulders as Caesar rolled them over. "What are you doing?"

"There's some oil on the bedside table. On your right." Autolycus retrieved it and stared at it stupidly, like it would tell him why Caesar wouldn't just behave like a normal warlord. He nearly jumped when he felt Caesar's legs hook over his shoulders and switched his questioning gaze from the oil to the dictator.

That condescending voice was back. "Oil. Your fingers. My ass. Your cock. That order. Do you need a diagram?"

"You know, for a renowned orator, you certainly make terrible conversation." Where the hell was that wit five minutes ago?

"Funny, you seemed impressed enough with my oral skills a moment before."

Autolycus was tempted to argue further, just to show Caesar he wasn't a complete ninny, but the dictator had a point. And besides, he wasn't here for the conversation. The sight of Caesar bent double for him was more than enough incentive to start moving. If Caesar wanted to defy all the rules of Evil, then who was he to argue? Gods, the man was tight. "Don't do this often, do you?"

Caesar didn't answer, but he did moan, and that was more than enough. Enough for his cock, anyway, who was directing his fingers as they stretched Caesar's ass. His stupid mind had gone back into shock mode. "You know, this really isn't-"

"Shut up and fuck me, you idiot." He nearly came at the words, but managed to dump the rest of the oil on his cock and slam into the man instead. Caesar's long legs tensed, and his tongue dove into Autolycus' mouth with the same intensity Autolycus rammed his cock into Caesar's ass. He picked up speed, felt Caesar's nails dig into his back and his teeth join his tongue. And to think he'd come here for some priestess.

Finally, plunging deep, Autolycus came, and felt warm semen coat his stomach as Caesar joined him. He collapsed, exhausted and panting. After a moment Caesar shifted his legs, and Autolycus moved to his side. They stared at the mosaic on the ceiling.

"Xena's gonna kill me if she finds me."

"Join the club."

More staring at the mosaic. Autolycus tried to think of something brilliant to say, something fit for the King of Thieves, but his mind had quit, probably overwhelmed, so he settled for the truth. "You know, for a violent psychopath you're not half bad in bed."

"And for a good guy you're a pretty good fuck."

"I won't tell Xena if you won't."

"Hmmm. I don't know, Autolycus. I think the book might require it." Autolycus sat up, furious, until he saw that those green eyes were laughing at him.

"But Caesar, didn't you know? There is no book."

"Gee, really?"

He managed to ignore Caesar's mocking tone. "No. None. No damn book at all."

They slept peacefully the rest of the night.

The End

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