Title: Kissing strangers
Pairing: Chris Pine/Zachary Quinto/Milo Ventimiglia
Summary: This story is about Chris sitting in his tub naked - without water in it – reading poetry out loud to Zach. Zachary being confused and Milo being amused by all of it - maybe because he's the only one who has a clue here.
"You can lie down, you know, Zachary does it all the time,” Milo says. Chris gives him a look, takes a sip of his nearly empty paper-cup. Zachary, he thinks. He likes how Milo says it, he liked it when he heard it on the phone as well. It sounds close and forbidden in a way he can't really describe.
"Are you a messy person?”
"Because you are?”
"Because Zach isn't,” Chris answers.
Warning(s): kissing, mentions of sex, threesome
Author’s Notes: Poems by: Ellen Wade Beals (Between The Sheets ), D H Lawrence (Lies about love) and Octavio Paz (Touch). AWESOME Art by: therisingmoon. You guys, it's so lovely and fits this story so perfectly.
Word Count: 10.816
Beta: sabinaluvsrydon, tygermine (thank you so much!)
Disclaimer: Don’t know, don’t own, not real
His first kiss is with a girl who is a year older than him, and he knows she doesn't like him. Her name is Eva, and she has long dark hair that is usually pulled up into a ponytail. He’s only eleven, and everyone is clapping when it's over. His mom in the front. His father's absence is a pain he got used to. Or so he thought.
At fourteen, it’s the only way to get kissed at all. Kissing in front of an audience of people who don’t know him and by people who don’t care who he is or what makes him a human being. Don’t care that he likes to read Shakespeare and Schiller, that he prefers Lucky's to Marlboro's and that his brother lets him drink beer when their mom is out.
Kissing strangers is a business, a career. He gets really good at it, the kissing part in particular. He doesn't think girls hate it after they were kissed by him, because he has a technique, and it's a fucking great one. Years of training he supposes.
The first guy he kisses is a replacement for another actor. He only knows his first name. It's like kissing a girl, because all strangers are the same. Foreign. He doesn't freak out about it, cause he doesn't see the point.
Being an actor is like being a whore, or more accurately, a porn star. You get paid to fuck different people in front of a camera. Chris has never paid for sex in his whole life (not that he's old yet). He’s paid regularly for pretending to be someone he's not. So does a whore. He guesses he just makes more money.
For someone who didn't even want to be an actor he thinks he isn't that bad. He doesn't even know when the hell he decided to be what his mother didn't want him to be. She might still be a bit bitter about her own nonexistent career.
Sometimes, when he looks into the mirror, he can’t see himself. He sees fragments. Pieces of himself amongst the masks he uses for work. Things people find attractive. His lips, his eyes (maybe).
He hates his hair right now. Stupid Princess Diaries 2, he thinks, shaking his head. As soon as this is all over he's going to cut it really fucking short.
The thing is, he thinks, bemused, the thing is he is pretty by whatever standards Hollywood is measuring these things. He's also young, and that usually works in one's favour. So of course people want him in romantic comedies. Charming women from 14 to 40. He’s had enough of this. He wants to be something more, someone else, and he wants...a lot of things actually. Not kissing strangers for a living is sometimes one of these things.
He doesn't care. Kissing is not something he cares much about when he does it in front of a camera and it happens more often in front of one than not these days. He guesses he should be glad that it happens at all. He isn't freaked out about kissing guys.
Being a main character in a TV show has its merits. Kissing a girl for the first time he only had coffee with is...like kissing anybody else. The thing is that Alexis doesn't stay a stranger for too long. They talk and they date and they kiss and it feels different. And then they break up.
Heroes is definitely the turning point. Not only does he break up with Alexis, he discovers that she was also a stranger for the last year they were together. Maybe he was one as well.
"So, you're Spock now?” Milo asks. They’re drinking coffee outside the studio, because it's sunny and not too hot.
"Not sure. I think my chances are like anyone else's?” he asks back.
"Right,” Milo answers. It's not that he's jealous or anything. He honestly thinks Zach would be a really good Spock. It's in the profile, and how sometime he can be so fucking serious.
"Seriously. I’m not getting my hopes up, Milo,” Zach answers. Zach doesn't use a nickname often, he usually likes to call people by their full names.
"Right,” Milo repeats sceptically, taking a sip of coffee. Zach looks into his paper-cup, the coffee is lukewarm at best right now, he sets it down on the ground – there isn't a trash can in sight - and vows to throw it in the first he sees.
"Really,” Zach says.
"Any idea who's gonna play Uhura?” Milo asks. He used to watch Star Trek as a kid and won’t admit how excited he is at the idea of the remake. He’s a Trekky nerd at heart.
"At this stage? No idea...” Zach looks away from Milo's face, hiding a smile that way.
"Zach,” Milo presses the issue with a whine.
"There are rumours,” he finally admits.
"There always are,” Milo says.
"You had a thing for her when you were younger!”
"Didn't everyone?” Milo picks up Zach's abandoned cup and starts walking in the studio's direction.
"Zoë Saldana,” Zach says following Milo.
"So I hear,” Zach answers.
Zach knows Chris. Not because he watched the movies Chris was in, because…Zach has standards and his time is precious. Especially his free time. He prefers to read or watch something good. The people he hangs out with usually prefer that as well, or they’re just humouring him.
He knows Chris because they have the same personal trainer and yeah, he knows exactly how that sounds. But it’s not like that, his personal trainer is a friend and well, Chris is just a friend of a friend. They see each other on the way in or out of the gym mostly. So he hasn’t spoken more than three words to Chris.
Chris is here to audition for Kirk. Zach knows it’s the second time for Chris. Zach has no idea what J.J. might see in Chris, but it’s not really his place to wonder about it. He can work with anybody. It’s his job. He knows he was lucky to get the part that fast. He likes Spock, it’s something new. It’s someone new to be for a while. Also, Milo will be so jealous that he gets to kiss Zoë.
Chris isn’t even nervous. He thinks that maybe he should be, but he can’t muster up the energy to be nervous. He already messed up once. It can’t honestly get any worse than that. This part would be something great, different, and big. He knows it and he wants it, but he will not cry if J.J. decides he isn’t it after all.
Zach is fucking…present. He has his part down so perfectly, it gives Chris goose bumps. Something inside him wants to be worthy of playing Kirk in this movie alongside Zachary Quinto. He doesn’t even know what he’s doing or how he’s doing it, but Zach’s energy is infectious. He is Kirk. More importantly, he is the Kirk to Zachary’s Spock.
Milo knows that Zach is doing the big movie now. He knows and he understands, but it somehow still stings that he is spending so much time with the Star Trek crew. He misses hanging out with Zach. Just the two of them. Maybe he’s a bit childish when it comes to Zach, but for all of the ‘we are sworn enemies on screen’ thing, they are really good friends.
He throws his empty coffee-cup into the trash can and pulls out his cell. If he’s lucky, Zach will be at lunch now, with the Star Trek crew…he shoves the thought aside and writes a text.
"Eating, but I’m nearly done. Call you?” Comes his reply.
"Yeah,” Milo types back and waits.
"Hey,” Zach says and Milo just listens for a few seconds to his voice, lets it flow through his body.
"Hey, so what are you doing?” he asks.
"Eating lunch, filming, hanging out with people…work,” Zach answers with a laugh.
"Are you asking me out on a date, Milo Ventimiglia?” Zach says.
"Would you like that, Mister Zachary Quinto?”
"Maybe,” he admits. “It’s been a while.” And Milo thinks: more like months.
"Hmmm…” Milo answers, listening to Zach breathe on the other end of the line. He can hear people in the background. People he doesn’t know.
“Wanna come over then?”
“Am I gonna sit through another boring movie?”
”I can humour you, I suppose.”
”You better,” Milo answers.
“Have to go, see you later.”
“Later,” Milo says and hangs up. He leans against the nearest wall and breathes. In, out, and in again. He puts his phone back into his pocket and goes back to work.
"So, you free tonight?” Chris asks, bouncing on the balls of his feet. He feels pretty good about the day. Everything went okay. J.J. seemed pleased as well.
"Why?” Zach asks and he does the eyebrow thing. Chris keeps his face straight.
"Me and the guys are going out for drinks and stuff,” Chris says. He has no idea why he and Zach clicked, but he isn’t going to theorise about it either. Sometimes things just happen. His sister could tell him stuff about souls meeting and parting, but he doesn’t really believe in that.
"I have to decline,” Zach answers. Chris feels a pool of disappointment spreading out inside his body.
"Why?” he asks and well, he totally can be childish about shit, okay. So he is. He is adorable, that’s how he gets away with stuff.
"I’m meeting someone for…to hang out, actually.”
"…Milo,” Zach says.
"Hmm…” Chris answers. “Tomorrow then?” he asks, blue eyes wide.
"Sure,” Zach answers. Chris smiles, but he knows it’s not his usual grin. Zach gives him a look, but he shakes his head.
"Have fun!” he says and leaves Zach staring after him, frown across his forehead.
Okay, so Zach totally has other friends. He knew that and those friends don’t see him that often either, now that he is filming Star Trek. He understands that Zach wants to spend time with other people as well. He understands, but why does it feel like someone is stealing Zach from him? He doesn’t feel like that when Zach is hanging out with John or Zoë or Karl. So, why is he freaking out because of Milo? He shakes his head. What the hell? He isn’t five anymore.
"What’s with Zach?” Karl asks.
"Has other plans…with his other friends.”
"Lies! He doesn’t have any other friends!” John says.
"Well, apparently he is cheating on us,” Karl throws in, laughing. Chris smiles, but somehow he doesn’t really feel it.
"Let’s go!” he says, shoving everything else away from him. He is just over thinking things again.
Not the first time and not the last for sure.
He breaths the air in and it tastes like sunshine and smoke.
The thing with Chris, kind of bothers him all the way home. He can't really put a finger on it, but somehow it seems as if Chris was...jealous of his other friends. It's stupid and he shakes his head, parking the car and stepping outside. The air is hot and smells like smoke. He leans against his car, takes out his pack of cigarettes and lights one. He supposes he could call Chris and ask him over. They could hang out together. He’s sure Milo and Chris have a few things in common, being actors for example. Being loved by women from 14 to 40 and all that stuff. On the other hand, he really wants to spend some time with Milo. Just Milo without Chris being all...well, Chris.
He inhales smoke and lets it out again, watching it mingle with the too hot air.
There are things Milo doesn't like to think about too intensely. One of these things is his easy, too easy, friendship with Zach. Sometimes it feels like he is falling, sinking slowly into it. On other days, it feels like he couldn't possibly sink any deeper, any further without drowning. It's a bit scary and a bit exciting.
Zach is rolling his eyes, Milo knows it. He doesn't need to see it to know it. They're watching 'Blind Dating' because it was Milo's turn to pick a movie and he never saw anything with Chris in it and he knows that Zach hasn't either. He might possibly be a bit evil as well. Just a bit.
"That's your hobby, right?” Zach asks.
"Because you’re a vegetarian who doesn't smoke or drink. This has to be your dark side,” Zach clarifies.
"Trust me, that is so not my dark side,” Milo answers. Zach gives him a look, but he ignores it.
"What is your dark side? Does it have cookies?” he asks. Milo should have seen that one coming. It’s inevitable when hanging out with Zach. He closes his eyes briefly and then looks at Zach. Zach's eyes are intense and he always feels like Zach really is interested in what he's saying or thinking, even if he mocks Milo's opinion. It's just how Zach affects people.
"You're the genius, figure it out,” he answers, blowing him off. Zach laughs and then tells him about this one scene he has with Chris on the bridge, just before he strangles him.
Milo is really disturbed by how this short anecdote makes him feel.
Zach is snickering at him. Chris just knows it. He doesn't need to see to know it.
"Okay, what is it?” he wants to know, putting his sandwich down on the green napkin and turning to look at Zach. He wipes his hands on his jeans and looks down at Zach. Zach takes a sip of his horrible soy latte, without sugar (it's so alien to drink coffee without sugar) and shakes his head. A soft gesture that makes his hair fall into his eyes. “Why do I get the feeling you’re laughing behind my back?” He asks and then: “At me.”
"I saw 'Blind Dating' yesterday,” Zach says.
Chris is taken aback for a minute. “Why would you waste your time on that?” He feels the embarrassment creep up his neck.
"Milo brought it over,” he shrugs and pushes his hair out of his eyes, taking another sip of his latte.
"Milo...” Chris mumbles.
"The guy from Heroes?” Zach is being an ass.
"I know who he is,” he waves a hand and Zach laughs. “You don’t need to be an ass about it.”
"Are you watching his movies secretly?”
"Gilmore Girls,” Chris says with a grin.
"Yes way,” He takes his sandwich and bites into it with delight. Zach shakes his head; Chris can see it from the corner of his eye. “I didn't promise anything,” he adds after swallowing.
Zach is drumming his fingers against the tabletop. It sounds like a heartbeat, an erratic heartbeat. But maybe it's just Chris' imagination. He shakes his head mentally. What the hell is wrong with him?
"You wouldn't have kept it even if you did. I know you,” Zach says, he is looking at something over Chris' head.
Chris has no idea what to answer to that so he keeps quiet.
Zach is kind of out of it the whole day. It's not that his acting is suffering, but he is really glad he doesn't have that many scenes with Chris. After lunch things got a bit messy in his head.
He isn't really sure why he said what he said, and why it bothers him now. For someone who is usually very careful with his words, it unnerved him that something so glib slipped out. He takes out his pack of cigarettes and lights one, leaning against his car. The metal is hot. Too hot, but he doesn't care right now. The sun is unforgiving as always, and he wishes he were somewhere else. Home maybe, where he can smoke in peace. He inhales, keeps it in a bit too long, like when he was a teenager, and lets it out again, slowly. He closes his eyes against the sun's glaring reflection on the hot metal and the glass under him.
"You're getting sunburned,” Zoë says. He opens his eyes to look at her.
"Maybe that's my intention?”
"Right,” she answers with a look.
He is pretty sure she is going to ask any minute now why the hell he is here, after work. Leaning against his car in a nearly empty parking lot. Smoking. He has no real answer. Well, he doesn't have a good one.
"On my way home,” he says, taking a last drag and dropping the butt on the pavement. She gives him a dirty look. He bends down to pick it up again and she follows him to the trash-can. “Just wanted to smoke a cigarette before I get in my car.”
"You were brooding,” she states.
"I don’t brood,” he narrows his eyes at her.
“Then what do you call it?”
“Being charming?” He smiles over his shoulder at her and she rolls her eyes.
"You’re okay, right?”
"Yes, Zoë, I am,” he says it without really thinking about it. Most people don't want to know if you are okay when they ask. They don't even mean it when they ask. That's what he has experienced. She keeps quiet, but walks him to his car. Leans against it and closes her eyes, soaking up the sun. He thinks she looks incredibly beautiful at that moment and says as much. She laughs without opening her eyes.
"You really are charming.”
"I know,” he answers with a laugh. He doesn't know how she does it, but she always manages to make him feel better.
Chris is brooding. He is not really the brooding type, but today is a free day and he has nothing better to do, as Zach is hanging out with Milo. Chris is not really jealous, because that would be stupid. And Chris is not a stupid guy. Well, not often.
He’s lying in his bed, the sheets a mess around him. It's too hot to move anyway. And he is staring at the ceiling. He is actually thinking about painting it another colour, maybe green, to reflect nicely off the white walls. He has always liked green. He just didn't have the time to paint his ceiling yet.
Today is not the day for it though. Too hot to move. He rolls over onto his side, the sweat cooling on his skin, in the dip of his back and between his shoulder-blades. He doesn't really want to think about what Milo and Zach are doing now. Sitting on the couch and watching movies maybe. Maybe reading poems to each other out loud...he grins. Not even Zach would do something that geeky on a day like this. He closes his eyes. Why the hell does he have the feeling that someone is stealing his best friend? He knew Zach had other friends, everyone has other friends. For god's sake, he has other friends. But on the other hand, Milo is one of those other friends he doesn't know. He never met the guy in his life. He watches Heroes when he has the time. Milo is kind of attractive and he and Zach have a chemistry you can almost feel through the screen. It looks a little like what he and Zach have. He shifts again and then gets up to get some water.
His bare feet make funny sounds on the hardwood floor. The house is too quiet.
Zach sits on the floor against the fridge and Milo looks down at him, amused.
"It's too hot to do...anything,” he sighs, closing his eyes. When he woke up, naked with his sheets kicked aside, he asked himself what the hell Chris will do today. Chris kind of hates it when it's so fucking hot, he turns into a vegetable, just lying around wherever. It was a strange first thought even for him and then Noah jumped on the bed and he got up and showered.
Milo is leaning against the counter, a bottle of cold water pressed against his neck.
"No shit,” he agrees. His phone rings and Milo gets it because he's closer to the table than Zach.
“Zachary Quinto's residence. Who may I announce?” he asks and Zach rolls his eyes at him. Milo smiles. “Yeah, he is here,” he says and hands the cell over. “For you.”
"No kidding,” Zach answers, taking it. A glance at the display tells him it's Chris “Christopher,” he says. Milo gives him a look.
"So, you're hanging out with Milo after all. Even if it's too fucking hot to hang out or move,” Chris sighs on the other end of the phone.
"I bet you’re lying in your bathtub and doing nothing right now,” he answers.
"I'm sipping cold water and talking to you. I'm bored out of my mind. Read some of the poems to me as well.”
"The ones you’re reading to Milo. I know you guys do more than just watch my crappy old movies,” Chris sounds between tired and amused.
"I'm thinking about painting my ceiling green.”
"In your bedroom?” Zach asks and Milo gives him a look, he smiles and then pushes loudspeaker, so Milo can listen in on the conversation. Zach feels bad leaving him out and Christopher obviously only wants to chat.
"Where else would I want a green ceiling, Zach?” Chris wants to know, he sounds like he’s smiling. Zach can hear him put a glass on the edge of his bathtub.
"Is there water in your tub, Christopher?”
"I'm naked,” Chris answers and Milo gives him another look, not weirded out, but kind of bemused.
"Of course you are, but that doesn't actually answer my question,” Zach says. The hand that isn't holding his cell is drumming out the beat of Smoke on the Water on the kitchen floor.
"If you think about it, you would come to the conclusion that of course not, as the metal is cold against my naked skin. I don't need water in my tub...and besides, we are saving the world by not soaking in water just because it's hot.”
"That so?” Zach says.
"You're letting him listen, aren't you?”
"Kinky,” Chris answers. Zach laughs and so does Milo.
His clothes are plastered to his skin when he leaves his car and enters the living room. He strips on the way to his bathroom and leaves the clothes scattered all over the house.
The water is cool as he leans against the tiles, letting it cascade down his body. When he thinks back to the evening and Zach's conversation with Chris: there was a certain familiarity in the way Zach was talking to Chris Pine. He can't put his finger on it right now, but maybe it's because he is too hot and tired. The weather makes everyone lethargic. He considers jerking off, but then just closes his eyes and lets the water wash over his face and body. Cool and refreshing. It would just be too messy, too much effort. And he can't come up with a fantasy right now anyway. His mind too slow and sluggish.
He meets Chris by chance. He was on the way out of the coffee shop with a cold latte when Chris bumped into him. When he thinks about it, he knows he pictured this somehow differently. Zach would have been there.
"Mister Ventimiglia,” Chris says with a grin. They are standing in the door, but no one is complaining so far.
"Christopher Pine,” Milo answers.
Chris makes a face. “No one calls me Christopher except my mother and...”
"Zach,” Milo finishes and Chris grins at him, nodding.
"Yeah. It's a thing he does.”
"Tell me about it,” Milo answers, not quite rolling his eyes.
"You heading somewhere?”
"Want some company?” Chris asks and Milo nods, without really thinking about it.
Chris leaves his shoes in the hall and takes off his socks and Milo doesn't even bat an eyelid. That's how he knows they're going to be great friends. Here is what Chris was thinking about after he hung up that evening in his bathtub: He and Milo need to become friends so he can hang out with Zach more. He may or may not have stalked Milo to find out where he usually gets his coffee. The internet is a curse for every celebrity or half celebrity or whatever. Sometimes it's a blessing. Like when you need to know where Milo Ventimiglia gets his coffee. Thank you Perez Hilton. So, here is the truth, he stalked Milo and it was not a coincidence that they met. Chris, of course, would never tell Milo that.
"Nice place,” Milo says, he puts his latte on the table and looks around. Chris is a messy person and he doesn't really care. Zach is a neat freak, so they balance each other out. He would like to know if Milo is a messy person as well.
"It's okay.” He answers shrugging. It's kind of his home now and he really likes it.
"Gonna paint that ceiling in your bedroom after all?” Milo asks, he's sitting on the edge of the couch. Chris is sitting on the cool floor. He really, really wants to lie down, but that would be a bit weird, maybe. He knows of course, that Milo is friends with Zach, but between him and Zach, Milo seems like the normal, boring, sane person.
"Yeah,” he answers, because he will. It's sitting at the back of his head. Milo nods.
"You can lie down, you know, Zachary does it all the time,” Milo says. Chris gives him a look, takes a sip of his nearly empty paper-cup. Zachary, he thinks. He likes how Milo says it, he liked it when he heard it on the phone as well. It sounds close and forbidden in a way he can't really describe.
"Are you a messy person?”
"Because you are?”
"Because Zach isn't,” Chris answers. Milo nods, but it doesn't mean he is a messy person, it only means he can follow Chris' logic. It's something, Chris thinks. He lies down and folds his hands behind his head, closing his eyes.
"No, I'm not,” Milo says after a while. Hmm, Chris thinks. Maybe they don't need to balance each other out. Maybe it's something else. “I'm not you, you know.”
"Yeah,” Chris says, softly. He knows that, but he can't help but wonder how they fit, if it's so different from how he and Zach fit, but still so similar.
"I was hanging out with Milo today. He's a nice guy,” Chris says by way of greeting. Zach balances his phone between his shoulder and ear while he's dealing with his new scripts and Noah.
"I know,” he replies. It's an answer to both statements.
"Milo told you.”
"I hang out and work with him, I know he's a nice guy,” Zach answers and can hear Chris roll his eyes on the other end of the line. “Are you sitting in your bathtub again?”
"There is water in it this time,” Christopher says, and splashes some water. Zach doesn't wonder anymore. That's just Chris for you.
"Read to me,” he says and Chris doesn't miss a beat.
"Between The Sheets
to sleeping with books,
covers spread open and waiting -
a fluttering of leaves
like lapping tongues.
Oh, their smooth embossed spines.
The tawdry ones are good for a night.
Rumpled, smelling of smoke,
usually borrowed and broken.
They're anybody's book,
sorry, sticky maybe,
used and returned.
The worldly wise leave an exotic taste,
others have the common language
of guttersnipes but
provide good tale.
Some disappoint -
summer flings, read
important as the sand
shaken from my shoe.
I can't help but embrace them all,
stroking the ones I love,
smelling their words.
After a good read, I'm bushed.
Lying across my chest,
the latest listens to my heartbeat
while I take in what else it says,” he finishes, his voice soft.
Zach is lying on his bed, listening as the last words fade away. He thinks that it sounds like it's about lovers.
“Ellen Wade Beals.”
"It's like she's talking about lovers,” he says into the phone. He hears water splashing against the metal of the bathtub as Chris shifts; it's so quiet on the other end of the line.
"Was my first thought too. But maybe she just loves books. A lot of people do,” he answers. Zach turns around so he’s lying on his stomach, his head half buried in the pillows. Chris' quiet breathing in his ear, too close and familiar.
"Hmmm...” he says. Chris laughs.
"You're tired. I can tell. What were you doing?”
"Painting my bedroom ceiling,” Zach answers. It's not true and he knows Chris knows as well.
"Fine, don't tell me,” he sounds amused, but doesn't press for more details. Zach is glad, he was out, fucking some random stranger. It's nothing he is proud of, but it's nothing he's ashamed of either. “Milo says he isn't messy,” Chris says.
"Hmm...” Chris says.
"Just wondering how you work,” he answers.
"We just do.”
"Like you and me,” not a question.
"Yes. Like you and me.”
Being with girls is easy. Girls are nice and soft and he doesn’t need to think about being with them, because it’s natural. Boy meets girl, boy sleeps with girl. Boy leaves in the morning (sometimes after breakfast, but he usually doesn’t stick around that long).
Her name is Jennifer and Chris knows her one hour and 34 minutes. He already knows that she’s going to take him home tonight if he wants. He isn’t sure he wants that. He is sure he wants to get laid, he needs to get laid is the thing, but he isn’t sure it’s her he wants today. He looks around carefully. But really, they are all the same, different hair, like different flavours of the same thing.
None of them are interesting.
He smiles and orders another drink, when the hell did it happen? When the hell was ‘interesting’ something to be desired? It’s the shallow girls who put out, who want fun. She touches his arm with her warm soft fingers and he looks at her.
"Wanna get out of here?” she asks.
He nods, he really does want out of here, maybe even with her. So she can tell all her friends tomorrow and maybe they even will believe her.
He doesn’t really know if she’s into him or into it, or into fucking a celebrity. It used to be clearer before the whole Star Trek thing started. On the plus side, Chris thinks, it’s way easier to pick up girls now. Not that it was hard before. He thinks it will get easier still.
"So…” Chris says and Zach looks bleary eyed at him. It’s three in the fucking morning.
"Christopher, come in,” he says, stepping aside. He has no idea why Chris is here in the first place, but it’s three in the fucking morning, so it must be something.
"What the hell…?” Milo asks and Zach just shrugs. He has no idea.
“Coffee?” he wants to know already walking over to the kitchen.
Zach nods at Chris to follow him.
"Didn’t know you and Milo…” Chris stops, waving a hand. Zach raises an eyebrow.
"You didn’t know me and Milo what, Christopher?” he asks, he is fucking amused, or could be if he wasn’t so tired.
"Hung out today,” Chris finishes lamely. He sits down and leans his head on the tabletop.
"Wild night?” Milo asks, putting a mug in front of him.
"Got laid,” Chris mumbles into the hard surface of the table.
"Shouldn’t you be more…I don’t know happy?” Milo asks, pouring coffee into mugs. He fixes Zach’s with no sugar and soy milk. Zach nods and takes a careful sip.
"You bet, but I’m not,” Chris answers the tabletop.
"Okay, how do you like it?”
"Ehm…dick in vagina?”
"Your coffee, idiot boy,” Zach says with a soft laugh.
"Oh…black like my soul,” he answers.
"Right,” Milo says. He looks to Zach, who just shrugs again. “Do you guys need some time alone? For a manly heart to heart?”
Chris looks up to glare at him, Milo waves it off. “I just wanna crash here,” he says after a brief silence.
"The couch is taken,” Milo answers.
"I’ll take the floor if I have to. I just can’t go home…”
"You left your one-night stand in your bed?”
"Give me some credit Ventimiglia.”
"We can share the bed,” Zach throws in. It’s no big deal after all.
"So not fair Zachary,” Milo says, taking a sip of his coffee.
"He just loves me more,” Chris tells the tabletop.
"You just look much more miserable,” Zach clarifies.
Milo feels disoriented when he wakes up to a pale blue ceiling and pale blue walls. The blanket doesn't smell like his at all, it smells like fresh laundry. He turns and his nose meets the back of the couch he was sleeping on. Zach's, he thinks. Right. He stayed over at Zach's house because it was late or something like that. His head feels a bit fuzzy, because he had coffee in the middle of the night he remembers. Chris, Chris Pine is sleeping in Zach's bed right now. He closes his eyes again. He is sure it's far too early to be thinking about it or to think coherently at all. Noah is licking his toe, so he makes a noise to make him go away, but it doesn't work.
"You know it doesn't work,” Zach says from somewhere to his right. Milo turns around to look at him. He’s only wearing a t-shirt and his boxers, his hair is a mess and he’s wearing his glasses.
"Coffee...” he answers, drawing his feet back under the blanket.
"Sure,” Zach says, shrugging.
"Is he still sleeping?”
"He was a mess last night. What do you think?” Zach answers, already on the way to the kitchen. Milo is considering just staying on the couch and yelling at Zach. But he is not an asshole. So he gets up, wrapping the blanket around him. The floor feels cold under his bare feet, so he crosses his legs under him as soon as he is sitting on the chair.
"Does he do that often?”
"Showing up in the middle of the night? Sleeping in my bed?” Zach asks, Milo can only see his back as he is preparing breakfast. How the muscles are shifting under his pale green t-shirt. The line of his neck, his elbows. The scar on his upper arm, just above the elbow.
Both, he thinks. “Coming here when he's out of his mind,” he settles on.
"He is always out of his mind, Milo,” Zach answers. Sometimes Milo is sure Zach hates that his parents didn't give him a long name. You just can't be that stern saying 'Milo'.
"I'm sure you can tell.”
"Toast with your coffee?” he wants to know, ignoring Milo's words. Milo smiles into the blanket.
"Yeah, jam, no butter,” he answers.
"I know,” Zach says, turning around with two mugs.
"So, you're Christopher Pine's babysitter?” he asks taking a sip of his coffee. Zach leans against his fridge, mug between both hands. The hem of is shirt is wet and Milo has no idea how he managed that, he is sure Zach couldn't tell either anymore.
"A friend. You were sleeping on my couch as well when what's her name broke up with you.”
Milo shrugs, it's true. He lived for days on Zach's couch, that's why he knows that making noises at Noah doesn't make the dog stop licking his toes.
"Those were good days,” he mumbles and Zach gives him a look.
"Not the breaking up part...” Milo adds.
Zach shakes his head and takes a sip of his own coffee. They keep quiet until a yell from the bedroom makes them laugh.
"Seems Noah found a new victim,” Milo says. Zach only nods.
Sometimes Chris has no idea why he does something. It's the honest to god truth. He still has no idea why he went to the second audition. He supposes that he will never know. It was just something he did. Sometimes he just does things without really thinking about them. Like being together with Audrina. She knows he doesn't love her and he knows she doesn't love him. They are friends with benefits at best. It's not that he doesn't like her. She is easy to get along with, so it's easy to like her.
Chris knows that Zach doesn't like her much. He even has an idea why.
"Because she is kind of...” Zach waves his hand, too polite to actually say it.
"Stupid?” Chris supplies.
"I'm sure she is charming and clever in her own way.”
"You think she's fake,” Chris states. Zach doesn't correct him, so Chris takes it as a yes. “I can't really argue the point, you know?”
"Yes, I do know.” Zach stretches and his shirt rides up. Chris' gaze is driven to the small patch of exposed skin. He doesn't analyse it, it's just something he does.
"It's easy with her, it's better than kissing strangers. And maybe you'll like her when you meet her,” Chris says. He doesn't really believe it and if Zach's look is anything to go by, he doesn't believe it either.
Zach is bored to death by her. It's the simple truth. He has to admit that she is nice to look at, but he finds it stupid and childish how she is all over Chris, like he belongs to her. Like a new shiny bag or something. It doesn't make things any better that he is dateless at the moment. They have nothing in common and every time Chris tries to steer the conversation away from The Hills and all her co-workers she shoots Zach a look and her hand disappears under the table. Zach doesn't want to know what she is doing, but he can't help knowing anyway, because he is not stupid and he knows all about those tactics.
"I'm going for a smoke,” he says and gets up without waiting for her or Chris to answer.
The air outside is still warm from the hot day, the pavement warmed by the sun, like the brick wall. He leans against it and takes out his pack of cigarettes. The alley is quiet and no one is going to bother him here, hopefully. He lights one and inhales deeply, letting the smoke out slowly and takes out his phone. One message from Milo: I bet you are ready to strangle her.
He smiles and pushes two, his brother is on one.
"Let me guess,” Milo says by a way of greeting and Zach waits, “you’re lurking outside smoking, but you were polite enough to wait after dinner...before dessert?”
"Yes,” he answers, taking another drag of his cigarette.
"Is she really that boring? She looks kinda hot.”
"Please don’t tell me you just googled her.”
"Of course not, I might be watching crappy movies staring Chris, but I won’t sink that low. So does she look hot in person as well?”
"I guess,” Zach answers. He takes another deep drag and wonders how long he can get away with it. Maybe ten minutes. He is a slow smoker and Christopher knows it.
"So, you don't like her because you think she's shallow or because...” Milo trails off.
"Just spit it out, Milo,” Zach says, sometimes he hates it that Milo's name is so short. 'Milo' never sounds stern.
"Or because she's with Chris?” Milo finishes. Zach can hear him breathing on the other side of the line. Familiar, regular breaths.
"You’re saying I’m jealous?”
"Of course,” Milo answers with a soft laugh. It makes everything inside Zach tingle with something warm. He takes a last drag of his cigarette, not even finished, and throws the rest of it into a nearby trash can.
"I won't,” Milo says and then: “Are you going back or are you going to tell them your friend has a crisis and you need to leave right now. I could make something up.”
"Nah...it's only dessert. I think I can manage. But thanks.”
"What are friends for?”
"Helping you move?” Zach says and Milo laughs before he says goodbye and hangs up on Zach.
Chris is smiling at him when he re-enters the restaurant and Zach smiles back. Just a tiny smile, he doesn't really feel it. But it's Chris and he tries to be a good friend. He doesn't think about the stuff Milo said too deeply, he just...he has no idea. He watches Chris with Audrina and tries to figure out if he really is kind of jealous. He doesn't think so, but he isn't sure.
"Zach doesn't like Audrina,” Chris says. He is lying on Milo's floor, his feet bare. His head pillowed on his arms, his eyes closed.
"Why do you care? He doesn't like a lot of people.”
"He doesn't know most of the people he dislikes,” Chris says to the ceiling. True, Milo thinks.
"Still, why do you care?”
"She’s my girlfriend?”
"It's not like you love her,” Milo answers, because he knows that Chris doesn’t.
"I care about her and I want Zach to like her.” There is a sulk fluttering around the edges of the words.
"Yes, because you want to keep Zach close and he won’t be hanging out with you if you're hanging out with her,” Milo answers. Chris sits up, his hands splayed out against the floor. Star-shaped flesh on dark wood.
"I'm not that selfish… or childish.”
"Christopher, you stalked me because you didn't want Zach to divide his time between us,” Milo answers. Chris looks surprised. “Oh, please,” Milo laughs. “You honestly thought I wouldn’t figure it out?”
Chris laughs. “That was kinda insulting, hmm?”
"Yeah, it was,” he shrugs. It's no big deal. People make that mistake often, because he's kinda pretty.
"Should have known,” Chris says.
Yeah, Milo thinks, yeah, because he is sure a lot of people made that mistake with Chris as well. Thinking he was only a nice face in a crowd.
"Zach cares about brains. He thinks it's important to have thoughts and opinions,” Milo says quietly.
“To be informed, alert.”
"I wonder if he is,” Chris says, looking Milo directly in the eyes.
"He gets there, eventually.”
There are things Chris doesn't think about at all and there are things he constantly thinks about. The last thing in his 'constantly thinking about' box is Zach and Milo.
"You aren't listening at all, are you?” Audrina whines. He thinks she sounds annoyed, like she was talking for fifteen minutes straight while he was zooming out.
"No, I'm not,” he answers, because honesty is important in a relationship. Her lips press into a thin line and her nails drum a beat against the tabletop. It’s super annoying, especially when she’s angry.
"I guess your mind is elsewhere. And I think I should be as well,” she says. He is pretty sure she wants him to tell her to stay, but he has a thing about not telling people what to do. She is old enough, she is a thinking modern woman, she can figure out for herself if she wants to stay here, with him or if she wants to leave. It's her choice.
"It's your choice,” he says.
She gets up, her heels making an angry staccato beat against the floor. He likes her legs. She smiles down on him as she notices him looking at them.
"I'm going home,” she answers, bending down to kiss his forehead.
"Sure,” she replies.
He knows she is still mad at him, but he can't muster up the energy to worry about it. He grabs his cell from the table and calls Milo instead. He has no idea when Milo became his number two on speed dial, it just kind of happened.
"Christopher,” Milo says. Chris kinda likes how Milo says his name. His full name, different from Zach, but somehow still the same.
"I think I just had a fight with my girlfriend,” Chris answers.
"She was pissed off and went home, I wasn't pissed at all and stayed at my place. It is a bit unclear, you see?”
"You are a hopeless case,” Milo laughs into the phone.
"Is Zach with you?”
"Wanna talk to him?”
"I have him on speed dial as well,” Chris answers.
Zach is not worried about his two best friends kinda falling for each other. Not worried at all. He watches Milo laugh into the phone while he’s making something to eat, and he doesn't even know anymore what the hell it is that he is making, but he is sure it will taste okay.
Milo is talking with Chris. Milo is often talking with Chris, or hanging out with Chris or talking about Chris.
And Zach is not jealous. Not at all. It's a good thing. Them slowly falling for each other. He doesn't know, isn't sure Chris is self aware enough to notice his slow slide down the Kinsey Scale. As far as he can tell, Chris still sees himself as a ladies man. Straight.
"What did he want?” Zach asks as Milo wanders into the kitchen. He leans against the counter and puts the phone down.
"Talk. He thinks he had a fight with his girlfriend,” Milo answers, shrugging. There is a smile playing upon his lips, something soft and secret.
"She walked out on him and he didn't stop her.”
"It's not like they're in love.”
"Yes, I know,” Milo is staring a hole into his back, so he turns around, wiping his hands clean on his jeans. “He likes you,” he clarifies.
"Yes, I know,” Milo answers and Zach is wondering if he maybe didn't get the meaning after all.
“And for the record, I’m not freaking out. So save your after school special speech about how liking a guy is not a bad thing.” Milo huffs slightly, crossing his arms.
"It’s not the first time for you,” Zach says.
Milo nods. “This job, you know. Guys, girls, it doesn’t really matter. When you close your eyes, all you know is that you’re kissing a stranger,” he shifts his weight, his hands gripping the edge of the counter hard. Zach can't look away from Milo's hands.
"Not sure Chris is realising it,” he says after a short silence, looking up, but not into Milo's face. His eyes fixed on a point a bit to the right of Milo's head.
"Zach...” he says with a sigh, words failing him. He tilts his head. “What are you making anyway?”
"I have no idea, something with tofu and vegetables and...I think rice,” Zach admits.
"I hope it tastes good, I'm starving,” Milo says.
"We'll just have to wait and see, won't we?”
"Yeah,” Milo replies, but Zach isn't sure they are talking about food anymore.
If Milo had to be honest with himself, he wonders at how easy it was to slip slide into this zone with Chris, where he likes Chris just a little more than he should. He wonders if Chris is sliding into the same area unaware or if he realised what was happening and is blindly clinging onto what he was, what he knew. Chris is smart, so Milo knows he’ll let go eventually. Zach, however, worries him. Chris is not the only one who needs to figure things out. Zach needs to do that as well. Maybe Zach has figured stuff out, but just came to the wrong conclusions. Milo can't say for sure.
Of all of them he thinks he is the only one who knows that they are kind of meant to be. There was no other way, not since Christopher bumped into him one Wednesday morning while he still wasn't caffeinated. Looking back he can't find it in him to regret any of this.
"I already talked to Zach,” Chris says.
"Hello to you, too. How unexpected to see you,” Milo answers obnoxiously.
Chris grins. “Are you letting me in?”
"Sure,” Milo replies.
Chris takes of his shoes and socks and walks into the kitchen to grab a bottle of water from Milo's fridge. It's like he's already living here. “You keep oscillating between my place and Zach's, right?”
"I'm sometimes at Audrina's as well,” Chris says.
"To get laid.”
"Yeah...” he leans against the wall and takes a sip from the bottle.
"So you talked to Zach?” He prompts.
"Yeah, about me and Audrina. He, of course, says I should do what feels right, but he never liked her,” Chris says.
"And now you want what? That I talk you out of it? I can only repeat Zach's words: Do what feels right,” he answers. Chris looks up at him and Milo's breath hitches. He could do something, anything, but he actually doesn't want to. He watches instead. Watches Chris putting the bottle of water down, watches him take a few steps to close the space between them, watches Chris' fingers close around his biceps, feels it. And then he feels Chris' lips on his. Wet and soft. And just pressing lightly against his. Hovering, but not uncertain. Chris is like Kirk, throwing himself into things and hoping for the best.
“This,” Chris whispers against Milo's lips, “this feels right.”
Something snaps and his hands come up to grab handfuls of Chris too soft shirt to drag him closer. His kisses back fiercely and maybe a bit desperately. “Yeah,” Chris mumbles, giving as good as he gets. “Yeah...”
Zach knows as soon as he sees Milo. They know each other for a long time now, he just knows.
“Okay,” Zach says and Milo gives him a look. One of the Peter ones, the unbelieving but understanding one. Zach kind of hates that one when it is directed at him.
“What are you talking about?”
“You and Christopher,” Zach states. He leans against the door frame, looking at Milo. Milo shrugs.
“You saw it coming, didn’t you?”
Zach nods. “Yeah....”
He knows he should be happy, but it seems like he can't be happy for his friends and he knows it isn't because he is afraid they will not want to hang out anymore. It's something else, something deeper, darker, uglier, something he doesn't want to face at all.
“I knew as soon as I stopped for a second and thought for a minute about how we met...”
“He stalked your coffee-place,” Zach says.
“I know. It's kind of ridiculous.”
“That's Christopher for you.”
Zach says 'Christopher' like it's something special. Like he is someone special. He cocks his head, looking at Zach. How his lips are forming the letters to make up a word like Christopher. How his eyes soften just a little bit, how his breathing seems calmer for just a few seconds.
“Coffee?” Zach asks, turning to leave and walk over to the kitchen. For a moment he thinks about just stopping Zach, grabbing his arm, pull him back, but he doesn't. Zach is not quite there yet.
“Sure,” he answers instead. He sits down on the couch, his legs folded under him and closes his eyes. Trying to not think. Sometimes you just need to let things go, let them develop on their own time. Milo is sure Chris has no concept of letting things develop, he smiles.
The smell of fresh coffee makes him open his eyes and as he does, he sees Zach, watching him.
“Coffee...” Zach says and Milo nods. There is the urge to grab Zach again, to pull him down, to feel his body against his own. He takes the mug instead, his fingers brush against Zach's in the process. Zach's fingers are warm and he can feel the bones under the skin, they're so thin.
Zach doesn't say anything about him and Milo and Chris doesn't either. He doesn't know how to broach the subject with Zach. After all Milo was Zach's friend first.
He's lying on Zach's wooden floor, staring at the ceiling. Chris can feel Zach's gaze on him. Settling on his chest, not his face. It's not exactly awkward, but it's not what it used to be either.
“Okay, whatever, I kissed Milo,” Chris blurts out, without looking at Zach.
“I know,” Zach answers. He sounds amused, Chris thinks, but he is still not looking at Zach.
“I broke up with Audrina...”
“I know that too.”
“You are not a total asshole,” Zach says.
“Thanks so much, Zachary,” he answers and Zach laughs. Zach's laugh is like a caress, like something forbidden. His world has tilted since Milo and maybe Zach can tilt it back.
“How?” Zach asks and Chris realises that he said the last part out loud. He can hear Zach's steps on the wooden floor, soft and wet and then Zach's face is hovering above Chris'.
Chris sits up, coming face to face with Zach's legs. Zach takes a step back. It's like a slow dance. Choreography. Intuition. Knowledge.
He shakes his head. “Just something,” he answers and Zach nods as if he understands. Maybe he does. You can never know what Zach understands.
“Wanna get up any time soon?”
“Nah...” Chris answers and lies down again, closing his eyes. Being with Zach is easy like this. Everything with Zach is easy.
“ Lies About Love
We are a liars, because
the truth of yesterday becomes a lie tomorrow,
whereas letters are fixed,
and we live by the letter of truth.
The love I feel for my friend, this year,
is different from the love I felt last year.
If it were not so, it would be a lie.
Yet we reiterate love! love! love!
as if it were a coin with a fixed value
instead of a flower that dies, and opens a different bud. ”
Chris puts the book aside and leans his head on the back of the couch. Maybe, Milo thinks, maybe Chris is figuring things out. He watches Chris breathe. It's slow, like he is counting the breaths: in and out and in again. Meditating over this short poem, over the words, the letters, how they are telling you something. Something important. How life changes, how relationships change, how love changes.
“You ever thought you love someone?” Chris asks.
“Usually I know if I love someone,” Milo answers. It's the truth. He doesn't need years to figure things out, he usually has to wait for the other party to figure it out.
“No, I mean...when things start to change and you just fall into it, without realising it?”
“Are you realising something right now?” Milo asks. Chris turns his head slightly to look at him. The book between his fingers.
“You knew I’d fall for you,” Chris says. It sounds like he's surprised at the realisation.
Milo nods. “Yeah,” he says and then: “And Zachary knew as well.”
“Hmmm...Do you think...” Chris starts and then just stops, closing his eyes again. “Never mind.”
Yeah, Milo thinks, yeah, Chris is starting to figure things out.
“So, I was reading this poem last week,” Chris says. His voice directly in Zach's ear.
“Are you in the bathtub again?” Zach asks, a bit bluntly.
“Are you making dinner?”
“Yes,” Zach answers. “You didn't answer my question.”
“I thought it was a rhetorical one.”
“No, it wasn't.”
“Yes, I am in the bathtub, and for further information, I am naked.”
“Uhmm...”Zach replies, shifting his phone to open the fridge and taking out vegetables.
“As stated before, I was reading this poem.”
“D H Lawrence ,” Chris answers, Zach just knows he is waving it away already, because that is not the conversation Chris is having.
“Hmmm...”, Zach says, just to tease a bit.
“Do you know it?”
“I may have read it once,” Zach admits.
“Wait,” Chris says. Zach can hear water splashing around and then Chris' voice again reciting the poem. Something inside Zach clenches and shifts. It's not entirely unpleasant.
“Things between you and Milo starting to make sense?” Zach asks as Chris finishes the poem.
“No. I had that figured out a while ago,” Chris says.
Zach adds pepper to his vegetables and stirs. Chris is breathing in his ear. Clear and regular. Like he's standing beside Zach, the only difference is that he can't feel Chris' breath on his skin. He kind of misses it.
“What is this about then?” Zach wants to know.
“You, Zachary,” Chris replies.
Zach takes a deep breath. “What are you trying to say?”
“Exactly what you think.”
Zach bites his lip. “You are with Milo,” he says.
“I know that, genius.”
Zach can hear water splash against the cool metal of the bathtub as Chris shifts. Can picture Chris naked. Knows how Chris looks – most of him, anyway. Zach has no idea what Chris is trying to do, but part of him wants whatever it is. “Are you still there, Zachary?” Chris asks and he says 'Zachary' like Milo does.
“Yes, I'm still here,” he answers.
“Good...I mean, good,” Chris says and then there is silence. It's clear to Zach that Chris is done talking, but he can't hang up now, Chris knows that and that's why he is still on the phone with Zach: quietly breathing in and out and in again.
“I talked to Zach,” Chris says. Milo stops kissing his spine and Chris makes a distressed sound. That was actually feeling really good.
“You did what?”
“Talked to Zach, about the poem,” Chris answers. He turns around when he can't feel Milo's body heat anymore. “What? Stop looking at me like I’m crazy. I am not...not more than yesterday anyway.”
Milo gives him a stern look. He turns fully and lies down on his back, staring at the ceiling. The sheets are soft and smell like them. He misses Zach's stupid aftershave suddenly, painfully. “I figured things out. You figured things out. Let me ask you something.” Chris does a funny waving motion with his hand.
“Yes?” Milo asks.
“If he had figured things out earlier than me, would you be with him then? Trying to woo me?” Chris smiles at the word, pursing his lips.
“That's what you are doing right now? Wooing Zach?”
“I'm reading him poems, Milo!”
“You were reading him poems back when you only knew him a few weeks,” Milo counters.
“Exactly,” Chris says and thinks that this point doesn't need any more discussing. “You didn't answer the question.”
“Yes.” Milo says, getting up. His naked feet make a soft sound on Chris' floor.
“Yes, what? And where are you going?”
“To call Zach,” Milo answers by the door. Chris feels cheated. This was supposed to be sex, hot and sweaty and with orgasms.
“You talk to him naked all the time,” Milo counters from the living room. Chris groans and closes his eyes. It seems he can't win. It doesn't really matter.
“Make him take off his clothes!” he shouts and hears Milo laugh.
“Things between you and Christopher are okay ,right?” Zach asks. Milo smiles.
“Yes, they are. Really good, Zachary,” Milo answers.
“He was weird when I spoke with him,” Zach isn't looking at Milo.
“He’s being Chris.”
“He was...yeah, okay. You are right. It was a Chris thing to say and do. Still...you are my friend and I don't want...” he waves a hand and Milo nods.
“It's not like that.” Milo sits up to look at Zach's face. Zach is sitting cross-legged on the floor, his hands beside him, fingers splayed out. Star-shaped. His whole posture reminds Milo of how Chris sits, usually a book beside him he doesn't read anymore. Talking about poems or Zach. Or Zach and poems.
“How is it then?”
“He asked me if you had figured things out earlier than he, would I be with you instead?” Milo says, watching Zach closely.
“And?” Zach wants to know, he is staring at his fingers.
“Yes.” Milo answers and Zach looks up. “See,” Milo continues, “I didn't need time to figure things out. I knew. I knew you liked him, I knew he liked you...I just wasn't sure how things were between us,” he finishes shrugging and hoping Zach gets it.
“And with 'us' you mean, you, me and Christopher,” Zach answers.
“I love how you say his name,” Milo says. Zach's fingers twitch, but that's the only indication he is aggravated. Milo really wants to kiss him now. Just pull him close and watch Zach give in, break apart, but it will be so much more beautiful watching Chris do it.
“This is kind of insane,” Zach says eventually.
“It's really not, if you think about it.”
“I'm afraid to think about it...” Zach says and Milo brushes his fingers against Zach's.
“I figure you spoke with Milo and he knocked some sense into you?” Is the first thing Chris asks as he opens the door. Zach rolls his eyes.
“Are you letting me in?”
“Yes, wherever you want.” Chris says it with a big smile, stepping back.
Zach thinks he should feel weird about this, but he really doesn't. It feels like the next natural step in their relationship. Chris runs a hand through his hair and bounces a bit in place. He feels nervous, but Zach really can't figure why. After all Zach is the one who is intruding on a relationship.
“I keep thinking that if he didn't...” Chris starts and stops suddenly. “If it wasn't Milo, it would've been you, sooner or later.”
“But it is Milo?” Zach asks. He feels disappointed.
“Right now, but only because he was there first. He...it's like you are there as well. Always. I was thinking about your stupid aftershave while we fucked, because I missed you there,” Chris says. Zach's breath hitches, he can't help it. “With us,” he adds, as if Zach needed any more clarification. His fingers itch to just grab Chris. “I want to hear you moan my name, Zachary,” Chris says with an evil smile.
“Well, yes that is the general idea,” Chris answers. “Come here, you’re too far away.”
Zach can't make himself move, just can't. Chris takes a step closer, reaches his hand out, strokes his fingers lightly over the back of Zach's hand and Zach grabs him, pulls him closer. “That's more like it,” Chris says just before their lips touch.
Chris knew it would be hot. But he didn't know how hot it would be watching Zach and Milo kiss. He had no idea at all. There is something achingly beautiful in the way Zach gives in, how Milo's fingers look around Zach's wrist. The line of Zach's neck.
“Zachary,” Milo says and Zach closes his eyes.
open the curtains of your being
clothe you in a further nudity
uncover the bodies of your body
invent another body for your body ”Chris recites and Milo looks at him.
“In the spirit of things...” Zach says quietly.
“Nudity,” Milo nods and Chris thinks, yes, yes this will work.