—Back again on English soil, Quartermaster. Safe and sound, as promised.
—Yes, I see how the first part of that statement is correct. It’s the ‘safe and sound’ bit I question. What did you do, drag your face through a gravel pit?
—Now, now. Is that any way to greet the man who’ll be eagerly—and I might add, attentively—back in your bed in… let’s call it 33 minutes or less?
—James, we’re at the office.
—Observant as ever, Q. We should rectify that. Take me home.
—You really do need someone to see to those cuts.
—And you have the best bedside manner of anyone I know, when you’re properly motivated.
—Just what makes you think parading around the latest evidence of your reckless disregard for your own wellbeing will serve as proper motivation?
—Because, darling, I happen to know just how much you like me—how did you phrase it when you attacked me in the broom cupboard after that last mission?—’roughed up just so.’
—I’ve changed my ways since then. I’ll not be had for the price of some scratches and a day’s stubble and mussed hair and my god, how can your eyes possibly look even bluer than when you left?
—It’s the tan. Tropical climes do a body good. Now come here and welcome me home properly.
—No one’s looking.
—Not the poin– mmphh.
—Now that’s a much nicer welcome. Thank you.
—James. You know I couldn’t bear it if you ever didn’t come home, don’t you?
—I do, love.
—And that despite how infernally sexy you look roughed up just so, I’d gladly never see you like that again if it would keep you safe.
—I know. And you know I care much more about making it back than I ever did, before you.
—Yes. … I suppose if you’re going to insist on coming back tan and filthy and bruised, then I should perhaps take you home and treat you like the rough trade you so resemble.
—I knew they were clever to promote you. Brilliant plan, as always, Quartermaster. Lead on, and I’ll watch your tight little arse as I follow.
Yes. It’s called cultural competency. Or just being fucking aware that you aren’t the only person on the planet.
Welcome, Mary Morstan...
John Pearson, James Bond, The Authorised Biograpy p. 47
There is something deeply Bridesheadian in the friendship between Burglar and Bond.