Here's the thing: Even knows movies. That's his forte in the grand scheme of life. He knows Isak calls him a hipster; he'll act annoyed at the term but it makes him smile when he's sitting in obscure cafes, doodling characters on napkins.
So it's a true miracle that he somehow ended up with a boy so uncultured about great cinema.
(Isak admitted to having watched Romeo + Juliet after stalking Even online and growing the biggest crush and hard on for him - “shut the fuck up Even, I watched it for Leonardo DiCaprio”. And if that didn't have Even boxing Isak into the surface of the kitchen counter top to help with his hard on… well.)
Isak’s need for car chases, terribly edited action sequences and, God forbid, Michael Bay, has been a point of serious contention in their relationship. Movie nights means Even needs to sit there and kiss Isak pliant as a distraction to quickly get his hands on the remote first.
Although, it has gotten better. He came home the other day to Isak watching Sweet Home Alabama, swaddled up in their comforter on bed, crying out at the television, “Goddamnit, just talk to each other! Boys, what the fuck, they're all constipated shits.”
“I hope you're not talking about me,” Even drawled, putting a hand over his mouth to hide his smile as Isak’s head pops out of his blanket burrito. “I mean… I'm definitely better than a cowboy, right? Though I think I'd look pretty sexy in a vest and boots.”
“Considering you had as much of a martyr complex as this idiot does while we were getting together, I'd say you were both on par for being the biggest migraines in human form,” Isak muttered, squirreling back into his blankets. “Also, you'd look absolutely horrendous in a vest. I'd have nightmares for years.”
“Not even in a cowboy hat?”
He had almost heard Isak smile; it was nice loving a grumpy boy that melted into his sweetest self in Even’s presence.
“Yeah, I guess you could pull off a cowboy hat. Just passable though, like barely crossing the hottie line.”
And with that Even had walked over, jumped onto his boyfriend, hidden in blankets, and started kissing over where he thought Isak's face was. Isak's laugh was smothered into their sheets as he tried to twist out of Even's grasp. When he had finally got his hands on Isak's face, he had rubbed his thumbs across the smile lines next to his eyes.
“Halla, cowboy,” Isak grinned up at Even, tilting his chin up - waiting.
(And how could Even not kiss him at that point?)
This is the slow but sure win of Even’s high quality taste in cinema. If his interludes of screenplay and character rants have had any effect, it's this: Isak willingly watching movies like Sweet Home Alabama and the brat pack films. So he's not sure why he's being subjected to this after a tiresome morning shift at Kafebrenneriet. He was looking forward to coming home for movie night to have Isak spoon him and feed him popcorn.
But he's looking at Isak, standing in front of him with a cheshire grin, holding up a DVD of Transformers 6 or whatever the fuck number they're on.
“Look at what Magnus lent me, baby!” Isak beams at him, waving the box in Even's face. He can almost feel a vein throb on his temple. Even is most definitely going to have words with Magnus after this but that's already futile because Magnus will turn the sad eyes on him and whine out a pitiful “broooo”.
(Even is drawn to a sad pair of eyes; Isak is too, if the way they fell into each others is any indicator.)
“We've had this discussion already, Isak. No blasphemy in this house under the name of Michael Bay, J.J Abrams, and Brett Ratner.”
“You're being unreasonable. I watch all your old people movies and boring romances!” Isak whinges at him.
“Don't even think about playing that I-dont-care-about-Even’s-movies card. I saw the tears in your eyes during The Notebook.”
He doesn't mention that he hadn't been able to take his eyes off Isak's profile - drinking in his expressions as Noah and Allie, withered and frail, whispered their age-old love for each other - imagining himself and Isak.
“It was fucking sad okay, doesn't mean I liked it. But I know for a fact that I like these movies!”
“I don't think you do; you just say this shit to annoy me,” Even says.
He can see Isak's smile start to dim; he feels a little deflated. He was just excited for their movie night - it wasn't intentional jabbing at Isak’s preferences. He's got to remedy this situation fast.
Even takes his hand in his gently and rubs his thumb across the smooth bones of Isak's knuckles. “I didn't mean that, I'm just a little tired today,” he says, lips ticked up on one side, apologetic.
“Was it a bad day?” Isak questions, letting go of Even’s hand to brush the hair off his forehead. He twirls the hair curled at the soft spot under Even's ear, reminding him that he is here - a grounding presence in a sea of anxiety. Even brings his hands up to Isak's hips and squeezes, feeling the surety of the moment in the way his fingers fit into the bone and skin; it's the way he fits there that lets him exhale in relief.
“Not that bad, but you know how customers can be sometimes.”
“Were they trying to take your pictures again?” Isak says cheekily.
“Ha! If only it was that. Just feeling a little heavy here,” he replies, pointing to his forehead.
He can see Isak start to frown, eyes lined with worry, ready to ask if he's okay - and he is - but it's not the moment for that discussion. “How about I raise you a Transformers movie for an even better one with epic sized robots and monsters? You can't deny how good that sounds.”
And Even knows he found the right boy because Isak takes his change of topic in stride and goes along, “I'd say you were bullshitting me and no movie with that tagline could possibly be good.”
Even scoffs, “that's rich coming from a Transformers fan. I'll add that there's no misogyny, actual people of colour, the world coming together with one initiative and the most badass female as the main lead. What'd you say then?”
Isak fake ponders on this question for a total of 15 seconds - this dramatic shit, Even thinks fondly. “Alright, I'll bite and watch your overachieving film but we have to watch Transformers after,” he says, leaving to get the popcorn.
“If the power of this movie works, I won't ever have to hear that disgusting word in my house again,” Even mutters under his breath.
“What did you say, baby?” Isak asks from the kitchen.
“Nothing, love! Just settling in, come quickly, I'm getting cold without you,” Even replies quickly. He settles into the bed and created a small fort of pillows behind and around him, with the blanket around his shoulders - fully equipped for all the cuddles.
Isak comes in holding the popcorn, settles the popcorn onto Even’s lap, and fits into the space behind him. He wraps his around Even's middle, tucking his chin into his shoulder.
“Alright, let's start your outrageous movie, Even.”
“Pacific Rim it is! I'm telling you baby, jaegers versus kaiju, that's where it's all at!” He says this as he opens up their Netflix account.
Even settles back against Isak's chest and he can't help but feel victorious - the man of his dreams is holding him, while they eat buttery popcorn and watch a cinematic masterpiece. He picks up a popcorn and reaches behind his shoulder and places it into Isak’s mouth, his lips sliding against the pads of Even’s fingers.
Yeah, it’s going to be a good night.
“That's a kaiju holy shit, I wouldn't wish that on my enemies, damn.”
“His brother fucking dies, what the fuck Even, I signed up for explosions not emotions!”
“Jesus Christ, I want Stacker Pentecost to be my dad.”
“This Newt guy is pretty cool… hey baby, how would you feel if I got a tattoo sleeve of constellations and the galaxy?”
“Okay look baby, don't get mad, but I'd suck Raleigh's dick and then marry him and Mako both. She'd kick my ass though, look at her fight! I'd worship the ground she walks on. Purely platonic love but we'd all work out.”
“It's not her fault! They're perfect together, oh my God, why won't her dad believe in her?!”
“Oh shitttttt, she schooled Raleigh so bad. This woman is a badass. Can she be our prime minister?”
“The baby kaiju died and came back to kill again… learn about dedication for your craft from this guy, damn.”
“This Australian fucker is so annoying… oh my God no why are they crying?? Even, what is this, this asshole has emotions. The dog also has an emotional story.”
“Yes I fucking knew Hot Dad Stacker would come through for Mako.”
“She has a fucking sword Even!!!! I love her!!!”
“They're saying farewell to each other in Japanese… no I'm not fucking crying Even.”
“They're drift compatible; I've never heard anything more romantic than this.”
As the movie unwinds to the credit scene, with Raleigh and Mako, foreheads bent together, arms around each other in desperate relief at being alive in each others presence, Even can feel his bad day dissipating away in the arms of his own beloved.
He feels Isak’s sigh against his back reverberate through his own chest; in a scant moment, it feels like they’re almost one.
Even turns his head, still cradled in Isak’s shoulder, to ask him, “so what’d you think? Be honest.”
Isak rolls his eyes at the satisfied grin on Even’s face. “You already know I liked it. If my running commentary wasn’t evidence enough,” he says, tightening his arms around Even, “I’m glad you convinced me to watch it.”
And maybe Even lives life multiple film reels at a time, storyboards scattered through his mind, but in this instant he’s just a boy gazing at another boy, who is his world, who will love him back longer than any movie could ever run.
They sit there smiling softly at each other, while the credit scene runs in the background.
Isak traces patterns along Even’s arms, fingers lingering on his pulse point. He asks quietly into the still air between them, “do you think we’d be drift compatible?”
Even… wasn’t expecting that. He’s stupefied that the concept stuck with Isak, but also that he would imagine himself and Even in the scenario. But then again, what did he expect from his boy, so equally full of logic and longing dreams about celestial bodies.
He stays quiet for a moment, closing his eyes, feeling the warm touch of Isak’s nonsensical traces on his skin, feeling it burrow into the lines of his veins, straight to his heart. Yeah, he thinks they’d always find each other in the drift, in any in-between.
“I think our minds know each other and I’d trust you with everything I have in in mine: happy or painful,” he answers honestly, surprised at his own truth. He opens his eyes to see Isak smiling softly at him, cheeks a little flushed. “What do you think?”
“I think we’d kick kaiju ass and sync up better than any pilot duo has ever done before,” Isak replies, laughing.
His fingers on Even’s arms stop at the pulse on his wrist, expression turning serious he says, “I know we’d be compatible because you’d treat my mind well, with all the fuckton of shitty memories I have, I’d never have to worry about you judging me. I’d know I could fall back on you - in every fucking universe where we’re jaeger pilots and the ones where we’re not.”
Even’s heart is thundering in his chest right now, he wonders if Isak can feel that and the pulse at his wrist as well. He’d never quite known how much Isak loved him and he might never be able to quantify it, but with these words he knows what they’ve got goes beyond a lifetime. He never thought he’d be able to place his soul in someone else’s hands, but Isak not only treasures him, but gives Even himself in return. Isak noses at skin of Even’s temples, bringing him back to the moment.
“I love you,” he whispers as he places a kiss on Even’s forehead.
“Mm, I love you too,” Even says, bringing Isak’s face to place a kiss on his nose. He feels wholeheartedly warm inside; the pink on Isak’s cheeks make him want to pepper kisses across them, so he does.
Isak lets him do this for some time and as Even gets nearer to his lips, he rears his head back excitedly saying, “wait! So when does the second movie come out? Tell me there’s a second movie, baby.”
Holy shit, Isak pulled away from a kiss to keep talking about the movie. And Even can take pride in his clear power in converting the most uncultured of cute boys into liking quality films. He’ll take this as a point for himself and zero for other directors that cannot be mentioned.
“Soon, baby. We’ll go watch it together!” Even replies. “Does this mean this is a household that appreciates movies of actual substance now?”
“Yes, definitely. I’ll concede and say this one was really great,” Isak says, smiling cheerfully down at him. “But we’re still going to watch Transformers now.”
“I’ve had it with you!” Even yells while turning to grab Isak into a crushing hug. Isak starts laughing and makes weak attempts to break out of Even’s arms with no avail. They fall into an entangled and perfect mess on their bed.
Even ends up bracketing Isak in from above after the small scrimmage. They’re both smiling goofily at each other. Even’s not ready for this scene to end; he places butterfly kisses along Isak’s cheekbones, smiling into his cheek. He feels Isak’s fingers cradle the back of his head and pull him closer to rub their noses together. He doesn’t know if they’ll ever stop smiling.
In this moment, they’re happy. In this moment, they’re in love. In this moment, his entire vision is made up of Isak.
In this moment, they trust.
And with that, Even kisses Isak and it feels like coming home. Even is used to living multiple film reels at a time, but right now, this is the only scene he has to think about.
A boy with a wild mind and a passion for cinema kissing and kissing and kissing a boy of stars and science; the two finding joy in the overlap of their lips, in the hollows where their tongues fit, and the heat that wandering hands leave behind.
He feels Isak grinning into the kiss; he can already imagine the droopy-eyed look Isak has on. Even is so fucking in love that all other thoughts can be put to rest, if only for the moment.
Suck it, Michael Bay.