Sean turns out the light, pulls the duvet up around his shoulders, closes his eyes, and that's when he hears it. A suspicious rustling and crackling coming from Orlando's side of the bed.
Orlando, who Sean swears was asleep when he came into the bedroom ten minutes ago.
"Orli, what are you doing?"
There's no response. Of course there isn't. Orlando likes to pretend that if he doesn't acknowledge whatever it is he's doing, Sean will believe he's innocent.
Sean, however, knows better.
The last time Orlando was innocent, he was five and hadn't yet figured out what his penis was for.
But sometimes he gives himself away. So Sean waits for a few beats, holding himself perfectly still, and listens. There's only silence from that side of the bed. Well, silence except for Orlando's soft, even breathing.
Sean has to hand it to him. His attempts at faking sleep have actually got better over the last few years. At least now he no longer attempts to snore in an effort to lull Sean.
So Sean closes his eyes again, willing to give the lad the benefit of the doubt this time. Maybe he was just hearing things. Or perhaps Sidi's over there, doing God only knows what that dog does at times (Sean stopped asking years ago).
But it is entirely possible that the dog has gotten hold of an empty bag or whatever and is choosing now to play with it. Sean makes a mental note to ban him from the bedroom in the morning.
And there it is again. Crackling and rustling, only this time it's accompanied by furtive movements from beside Sean. That's it.
"Orlando, what in God's name are you doing over there?" Sean asks as he sits up and reaches for the lamp. Soft light floods the room and he sees Orlando curled up in a ball.
Which isn't all that unusual. Orlando has two modes of sleeping: curled in a ball or starfished all over the bed.
Either way, all Sean can really see is a mop of tangled, dark curls. "Orlando," Sean repeats, reaching out and poking Orlando hard in the hip. He's rewarded with a jerk before Orlando can catch himself. "What are you doing?"
"Nothing," comes the muffled reply because Orlando still has his face in his pillow.
Sean doesn't buy it, not for a second, and delivers another hard poke.
"Oi!" Orlando bounces over onto his back to glare at Sean, and Sean hears it again. Crackling and rustling and crinkling. Coming from the general vicinity of Orlando's bum.
"Orlando Bloom," Sean says very slowly, narrowing his eyes. "I know you don't have food in this bed."
"I don't," Orlando says with far too much innocence. "I wouldn't."
"You are a terrible liar. Shite, really," Sean says, now certain that there is a bag of crisps or cookies or something hidden beneath the covers.
"Nope," Orlando says and shifts. He promptly freezes when the crinkling and crackling comes again, accompanied by distinct crunching this time.
That settles it. Without another word, Sean reaches out and shoves Orlando from the bed.
He lets out a loud squawk and flails – it's really spectacular flailing, too, utilizing the arms and the legs, Sean notes with mild amusement – and manages to grab the duvet as he slips off the edge of the mattress. When the flailing and squawking cease, he's sprawled in a heap of arms, legs, curls, and duvet half beneath the bed.
How he managed to get even partially beneath the bed is something Sean chooses not to question too closely. There lies madness and all that.
The bag of crisps (and it is indeed crisps) do not make the trip to the floor with him.
"No food in the bed, eh," Sean says drily as he holds up the offending bag.
Orlando just looks at it forlornly. "They're all squashed now."
"Orlando," Sean begins, then sighs and shakes his head. There are better ways of dealing with this that will guarantee Orlando stops leaving crumbs in the bed. "You know that pair of pants that you like so much? The red ones with the bells and the bow?"
"My jingle ball ones?" Orlando asks as a look of horror slowly creeps onto his face.
"I'm going to burn them in the morning," Sean says without so much as a twitch of a smile.
"You wouldn't," Orlando gasps, staring at Sean with wide eyes.
"Actions have consequences, lad," is all he says as he drops the bag of crisp crumbs into Orlando's lap. Then he turns back over and switches off the lamp again.
"I'll kick you in your jingle balls if you do," Orlando mutters.
"What was that?"
There's a beat of silence, followed by a quite crinkling and "Crisp?"
Sean just smiles and closes his eyes.