one night, after the alphabets have gone home and the Major is working late,
Eroica drops by NATO headquarters to show the Major his new outfit. Of course,
everyone's already seen it on television, but he wants to see Klaus's reaction
The reaction is as expected.
"I thought the tight pants you always wore were bad enough," he says
sourly as he looks the Englishman up and down.
Dorian slightly bends one knee, accenting the snugly fitting boots, and
twirls."Don't you think my legs are nice enough to show off?"
Naturally, this doesn't help. "I've always said your abilities were
wasted. You have a good brain and steady hands, you could have-"
"And a great body, don't forget that."
"-been anything, but you wasted your abilities on crime. That this should
have happened to you...."
"I know, it's a scandal." Dorian hovers just out of punching
distance, smiling beatifically. Not that Klaus is likely to try to punch him
now. German efficiency doesn't allow wasted effort. "But since it did, surely
you must approve of how I've been using the opportunity."
Klaus's reply is grudging. "You could use it in a less flashy
"But red's my best color." Dorian tilts his head to one side.
"You know, you remind me of some of my old lovers."
The Major steps back, as if being six inches farther away will make a
difference, his eyes wide with outrage. "You sick demented-"
"Some of them made a big fuss before they gave in. They wanted me to sweep
them off their feet. They wanted the excitement of being overwhelmed."
Klaus's face is almost the same color as Dorian's skintight suit.
"Your problem, darling, is that you're a six-foot-two trained killer. Very
few men could hope to overpower you, and those few aren't very attractive, are
Then the former thief moves like lightning, pinning Klaus to the wall, pressing
"Until now, that is." Eroica's voice is as soft as the caress he
gives Klaus's cheek.
Klaus tries to wrench free, but of course he can't. He settles for glaring.
"Well? Are you finally going to rape me?"
"Don't be silly. But perhaps I might steal a kiss."
The green eyes darken. Before Eroica can carry through on his promise-threat,
he abruptly turns his head, listening, his features intent.
"What is it?"
"An explosion. About five miles away." The next instant, the Earl is
on the windowsill, and the Major is regaining his balance.
Dorian pauses, looking over his shoulder.
Klaus hesitates, but there isn't time. "The cape's too much," is all
Dorian smiles. "I'll take that under consideration." Then he
disappears in a streak of red arching through the sky towards the disaster.
The Major goes to the phone to find out what caused the explosion. People who
haven't been hit by meteorites still have things to do.