He was having that dream again, the one with the sexual deviancy and the warm, silky silver. The one he often had after being anywhere near Jon Stewart for an extended period of time. The one that was the reason for any hostility between them. And surely it was all Jon's fault, anyway. It always made him wake up clammy and ashamed and sick and painfully aroused, and it was always a miracle if he didn't have to run to the bathroom immediately after. And it was always so vivid, too; this time was no exception. He groaned at the touch of soft, pale skin against his own.
The dream was a little different on this particular evening, and much more realistic than usual. Strong fingers pressed into his hips and he moaned, looking deeply into bright blue eyes. Odd; much more striking than the normal version of this dream. Almost icy blue, and such sad-looking eyes. Beautiful still but not quite the same.
God, he hated himself for indulging in it, this horrible, unholy fantasy. It made him sick to his stomach that he didn't want to wake up until it was done. It made him want to heave that his own hands caressed and kneaded the snowy-white flesh of the man on top of him, desperately needing and hopelessly detesting every last morsel of physical contact. He heard himself call out a name with too many syllables as he reached climax; a voice groaned into his neck in return but not the one he was expecting to hear. Not the one he normally heard during these private moments of inner turmoil... but he was too hazy to worry about it. In fact, it almost seemed as though he was falling asleep...
A band of sunlight through the blinds rather rudely rested across his eyes, waking Stephen up from a nice, comfortable sleep. After the dream he so detested enjoying, he'd managed a good few hours of interesting and bizarre fantasies, most of them involving Bill O'Reilly and something to do with Westerns. Squinting against the morning sun, he rolled over, wondering why on Earth he had confined himself to the one side of his exquisitely decorated king-sized bed.
The answer lay right next to him. No wonder his dream had been so different.
No wonder it had been so real.
Sprawled out next to the quivering Colbert was the very, very real Anderson Cooper, snoozing like a kitten in the sun. An adorable image, sure, but not after a dream - no, an experience - like that.
All of a sudden the nausea was back and the acid started to rise in the back of Stephen’s throat. Nope. This wasn’t happening. It hadn’t happened. Anderson was just… tired and… stopped by to… sleep next to Stephen because… he was scared of the… incoming storms.
Even with the sun beaming down so brightly, the lie would have worked just fine for Stephen if it hadn’t been for the fact that his guest had woken up and those captivating ice blue eyes were staring right at him. The younger man smiled.
“Morning,” he murmured sweetly, not unlike a cute kitten purring at him. No, Stephen! He berated himself quickly at the thought, scrunching his eyes closed and shaking his head. No, he’s a polar bear; do you hear me ColberT? An evil polar bear!
“Morning,” he squeaked back, trying to control his breathing. How had he let this happen? Homoerotic fantasies were supposed to stay fantasies, buried deep within his mind alongside childhood memories of his father that were just not important enough to remember and certain special field trips that had apparently helped to develop some of his ‘quirks’. “How’s it going? Good?”
Anderson frowned, looking as though he didn’t know whether to cackle maniacally or just stare triumphantly. At least, it looked that way to Stephen, who was already beginning to convince himself that the journalist had somehow put him under some kind of twisted, erotic spell.
“Um… I’m comfortable?” he offered in confusion, propping himself up on a well-muscled arm. The older man successfully tore his gaze away. “You feeling alright, Stephen?”
“Never better!” he lied, pulling the covers up over his chest, only serving to reveal more of the nicely toned body of his guest who, to Stephen’s dismay, didn’t seem to be body-shy. Just cold, he noticed. “Say, why don’t you… go take a shower and leave? Sound good? Does to me. Let’s do that.”
“What?” His guest still didn’t seem to be following his logic.
“Look, it’s very simple.” His self-brainwashing was going spectacularly. He already half-believed the notion that the journalist may well have put him under some sort of charm. He’d have to go find the guy who taught him the technique online and give him a five-star rating. “Go take a shower and get the hell out of my apartment.”
Before Anderson could protest to attempt to devour Stephen like a giant albino black widow spider, there was a harsh rapping at the door. Uh-oh. Turning to the clock at his bedside, he swore loudly and jumped out of bed. There was no doubt in his mind who that was outside. He’d agreed the previous evening that he’d meet Jon at ten. It was now eleven. Oh, Jon was going to be mad. Grabbing two robes from the closet, he ambushed Anderson with the larger one, covering him up nicely. Though the younger protested and made a fuss about how ‘bizarre’ and ‘stupid’ Stephen was being, he quickly agreed to be quiet when threatened with a visit from a certain Papa Bear... although the visit was a lie and he wasn’t sure that Anderson quite believed that he had the power to send Papa Bear to all his enemies’ houses. Which he totally did. He just chose not to use it.
The rapping at the door became impatient banging.
“Just a minute!”
Stephen hastily wrapped the second, far-too-small robe around his damp, naked form and wrenched the door open. He wasn’t totally shocked to see Jon standing outside, his hand resting tensely on his hip as he glared impatiently up at his friend. The younger man felt his cheeks flush a bright pink as he realised that the robe not only indicated that he wasn’t going anywhere soon, but also left very little to the imagination.
“Jon, what are you doing here?” was all he could think of to say. Jon sighed.
“Stephen, I asked you to meet me at the studio early today,” he said, clearly trying to take on the tone of a disappointed boss and miserably failing, sounding more like a wounded friend. The latter, Stephen decided, was worse. “You said you were having problems with your script for tonight so I kind of figured it was important that you, you know, show up for our meetings on time.”
The blush was growing ever redder, and the younger knew he had to come up with some bullshit excuse fast. Or at least, before his midnight visitor got up.
“Oh yeah, right right right,” he began, fumbling with the belt on his slipping robe. “I’m sorry; I had a… a difficult night last night… got home and… my head was spinning. I’ve seriously just woken up; I had no idea what time it was and —”
“Okay, okay Stephen.” The silver-haired man held his hands up as though to halt him. “I completely understand, I’m just glad you’re okay. You had me worried.” There was an agonisingly awkward pause before Jon broke the silence. “So, will you go and dress yourself so I can come in for a moment?”
“Uh, no.” He’d said it so bluntly that his mentor had laughed nervously, unsure whether it was his actual answer.
“You’re serious?” “Yeah. You can’t come in; sorry.” Jon frowned in confusion. “Uh. Can I ask why?”
Oh crap. He had to think of something, quick quick quick! The floorboards are rotting, the ceiling caved in, there’s no furniture, someone smashed all my windows!Suddenly, he heard the shower click on and the cascade of water seemed to echo loudly through the building. From the way Jon peered past him into the apartment, he was certain that he’d heard it, too.
“I-it’s monsoon season,” was his lame excuse. The older man just stared.
“I can’t come into your apartment,” he repeated slowly, watching Stephen’s face closely. “because it’s monsoon season.”
“Yeah, and you don’t want to be around when the storms hit, Jon,” he insisted, attempting to usher the smaller man away from the door. “It’s a mess in here.”
“Your apartment has its own climate? Is that what you’re telling me?” The look on his face told the half-naked one what he had feared since he’d opened the door: he was not buying it.
“I know not all of us can afford it, Jon, but I like a little rain during my relaxation hour every now and then.” Trying to shepherd Jon away, he’d left a gap between himself and the door which the smaller man gladly took advantage of.
“Bullshit, Stephen; who’s in here?”
Panicking, Stephen slammed the door shut. “No-one! A-and even if it was a someone and not my super advanced climate simulator it would definitely be a woman.”
Before either man could say anything else, another, paler silver-haired head poked itself out from the bathroom. Growing a similar shade of pink to Stephen, Anderson smiled nervously.
“Hi Jon,” he managed. The oldest smirked and looked around at the totally-poker-straight Republican, who looked (and felt) like he might explode with fear, anxiety and crippling humiliation. “I can see where you were confused, Stephen,” he said, shaking his head. “Rippling muscles, strong jaw. The picture of femininity.”