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Brush Up Your Shakespeare

by Elizabeth Kent

An F/M Double-Drabble in honor of Shakespeare's 441st birthday, April 23, 2005.

Quotes are from The Complete Illustrated Shakespeare except for the last line, which is a misquote.

"Love sought is good, but given unsought is better."

"Murdock; go to sleep!"

"To sleep, perchance to dream."

With a sigh, Face rolled over and opened his eyes. "Murdock, I think you're letting this whole Shakespeare thing get out of hand." Murdock's transvestite Puck had been the highlight of the VA Drama Club's production of A Midsummer Night's Dream. And in true Murdock style, he'd learned not only his lines, but everyone else's, and not just that play, but everything he could find in Face's Riverside edition of Shakespeare's works. He'd been alternately tormenting and amusing the team with quotable quotes ever since.

Murdock slid over to lay half on top of Face. "They do not love that do not show their love."

"That's fine, but do you have to show it at one o'clock in the morning?" Oh, hell. Murdock was wearing that kicked-puppy look. Okay, something Shakespearean. "Is it thy will thy image should keep open/My heavy eyelids to the weary night?"

"Sweet love, renew thy force; be it not said/Thy edge should blunter be than appetite."

"Hey!" Face twined his arms around Murdock's waist, pulled him down, and rolled over on top of him. "Does that feel blunt to you?"

"Ooh!" Murdock raised his eyebrows. "Is this a dagger I see before me?"

"Only screw thy courage to the sticking place," Face said with a wink, "and we'll not fail."

"Mm," Murdock rolled onto his stomach and looked at Face coyly. "Lay on, Macduff!"

"Why, then, the world's my oyster." He knelt behind his lover. "Which I with sword will open up."

Hours later, Face and his oyster lay exhausted, their arms and legs entwined, teetering at last on the edge of sleep. "Sleep," Face thought, "that knits up the ravelled sleeve of care." Damn, now Murdock had him doing it. Luckily, this drama club thing only happened once a year.

Murdock's lips pressed the back of his neck, and Face shivered. Well, the production wasn't a half-bad way to celebrate Shakespeare's birthday every year, even if it did wind Murdock up so tight it took all night to get him to go to sleep. Face closed his eyes and relaxed into his pillow.

"We're doing scenes from Hamlet next month in puppet workshop."

"Oh, crap."

Murdock chuckled and pulled Face closer. "Beware the Ides of May," he whispered.

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