There are these things inside Jim that he never knew were there until Doyler came along, these feelings and desires that he (ignored, was afraid of) never fully understood; Doyler's touch burns like he is branding Jim with his fingers, reverent and slow-moving over his skin until Jim gasps quietly and (dies a little, blushes fierce and red) begs for mercy.
Maybe those parts of Jim never existed until Doyler; maybe Doyler brought him to life, awakened the real Jim that was sleeping inside him, the Jim that can meet Doyler's wet open mouth with little more nervousness than a slight skip of his heartbeat.
He doesn't know half of what comes out of his mouth during that time they spend together--a mess of low noises and Doyler's name and incoherent praise--but most likely it would set his ears on fire if he heard himself later; afterward, they lie together and just breathe, Jim inching his fingers over hesitantly until they brush against Doyler's stomach; the wickedly contented smile Doyler aims at him warms Jim throughout; he wants to stay in this moment forever.
Jim is all too eager to get his hands on Doyler's bare skin, tearing at his clothes with an immensely flattering eagerness, but more often than not Doyler has to coax Jim out of his own clothes; what Jim is fine with him seeing when they are in the water together is apparently not as comfortable for him when Doyler looks him over hotly, letting his eyes linger over slowly-pinking skin and long limbs; anyway, Jim says with a blush, I'm not as nice to look at as you are.
Doyler raises an eyebrow; And which of us has the experience here? he asks pointedly, and grasps Jim's length with a casual friendly hand, delighting in Jim's surprised little gasp, if I say you're enough to keep me interested forever, pal o' me heart, then you had better believe me.
Jim ducks his head, looks up through his lashes; he does not look convinced, but it's no matter; Doyler will convince him one way or another that he's the most beautiful thing Doyler's ever been gifted with, no matter how long it takes him.
"Please," Jim gasps, blushing hot at the needy sound of his own voice, and Doyler's tumbling laugh sounds in his ears, and Jim focuses on the white flash of his teeth in the darkness, the seemingly careless, endlessly careful touch of his hands on Jim's body.
"Don't need to ask that with me," Doyler whispers into his ear, the soft brush of his lips against Jim's skin almost more consuming than his steadily stroking hand. "I'll get you there, never you worry."
"Drive me mad in the meantime," Jim chokes out, hands curling tight around Doyler's arms like he could join their flesh together with will and strength alone.
Doyler kisses him, teeth and tongue and parted lips, wet and burning, and Jim shakes all over with this wanting he has that's larger than his body. His skin feels too small, and when Doyler pulls away and wets his mouth, lips shining, and says, "Come on then, pal o' me heart, don't leave me waiting," Jim cries out Doyler's name in a voice tight with need and gives in to the rushing in his body.
After, Jim lies drowsy and tucked up into Doyler's body, hums softly as Doyler runs a thumb over his hip. Doyler shifts slightly, as if he might get up, and Jim asks, "You aren't going anywhere, are you?" Doyler stills, and Jim frowns, unsettled for a reason he can't quite name.
"Not going anywhere as long as you don't," Doyler says quietly, and he's smiling, but his eyes are sad, and Jim doesn't know why. There's a slow pain starting up in his chest.
"Good," he says at last, and pulls Doyler closer, closer, until they're just tangled arms and legs. They could stay like that forever. Jim falls asleep to the sound of Doyler’s heart, beating steadily under his ear.
He wakes slowly, eyes blinking open, and it’s as if his heart comes properly awake before the rest of him—it gives a great painful clench, an old gasping pain, and the empty space next to him is both familiar and agonizing.
Jim runs his shaking fingers down his body—it’s wet with his own release, only his own, no one else’s. There was no one else there, Doyler, Doyler, where did you go?
He gets out of bed like an old man, limbs slow and leaden, and goes to open the curtains and let the day in. He looks back over his shoulder at the empty bed, whispers to himself, “Ghosts,” and tries not to wish he were one of them.