May The Devil Keep Me Warm
Janos hated it when they came to Russia in the winter. Shaw didn’t heat their base here very well since he didn’t want pay for something he only used a handful of times a year. He’d also kept them to warmer climates, so Janos, who had grown up in warm climates, never adjusted to the cold. Every night he went to bed shaking and every morning he woke with sore muscles and stiff joints.
“Comrade,” Azazel said, lightly placing his hand on Jano’s shoulder. “You are not well.”
That touch. The warmth of it seeped through his clothes and soothed the dull ache in his shoulder. If he could, he would crawl under Azazel’s clothes and warm himself against that bright red skin. “Just cold. Didn’t sleep well.”
“You don’t like the cold?” Janos shook his head. “You’re not used to it.”
“And you are?” It was a stupid question, and Janos internally winced. Of course Azazel was used to it. He was Russian.
The grin Azazel gave him made his heart flutter, and he, never took his hand from his shoulder. “I know ways to keep warm. I’ll show you later, da?” Janos nodded, and Azazel vanished, leaving behind a few wisps of smoke and the faint smell of sulfur.
I’ll show you later, yes? Azazel’s words lingered in his mind all day while he tended to his duties around the base, and Janos tried not to let his mind twist them into more suggestive forms to fit his fantasies. The attraction had been there since he joined Shaw’s group, but he never acted on it. Azazel was something of an enigma still. His preferences were unknown, save for that he liked his knives and hand to hand combat, his favorite card games were poker and solitaire, and that he became quite irritable if he was offered anything other than vodka.
The decision not to pursue Azazel had been a painful one, but one that in the end Janos decided was necessary. Azazel was perhaps the first true friend he’d had in a long time, and the friendship they’d developed over card games and shared stories was too valuable for him to risk.
Despite himself, Janos was desperate for any physical contact with Azazel. In what he thought was one of his more brilliant moments he came up with a solution. When he sparred with Azazel, he would let him win if he could make it look natural. Most of the time, Azazel would just knock him to the ground, help him up and they’d start over. But sometimes he would pin him down, and he’d have to wriggle and writhe underneath Azazel
Janos snapped out of his reverie to find Shaw and Emma standing behind him.
“You’ve hardly gotten any work done.”
“Sorry, sir. I haven’t been feeling well.” He cast a quick glance to Emma, worried that she would have seen his thoughts, but if she did she didn’t say anything.
“Then you should get some rest. You don’t look so good,” Emma said. Janos nodded and retreated to his room.
His room was exactly as he left it that morning, save for the new bottle of vodka and two glasses on his nightstand. It wasn’t just any bottle of vodka, either. It was expensive, the type Shaw might bring out to have with a client.
Janos sat on his bed and waited for a half an hour staring at the bottle, waiting to see if Azazel would join him. That was what the second glass was for, right?
“Guess it’s just me tonight,” he murmured as he poured himself a glass.
The vodka was every bit as smooth as the bottle suggested it would be, and it filled his chest with fire as he drank. Soon, he was drowsy as well and curled up on the bed.
He was somewhere between waking and sleep when the familiar scent of smoke filled the room, and seconds later the bed shifted with additional weight. There was more warmth, too, at his back then covering him. The latter he soon realized was a thick, wool blanket.
“You’re in bed earlier than I thought you would be,” a voice with a thick, Russian accent whispered, and it sent a pleasured shiver up his spine.
“Azazel?” He would have turned but a pair of strong arms wrapped around him and held him in place.
“Shh, go back to sleep.” He nuzzled Janos’ neck.
A smile crossed his lips. “So, this is how you keep warm here?”
“Vodka. A good blanket.” There was a pause, and the gentle caress of Azazel’s tail against the back of his leg. “Someone to share both with.”
Janos felt his heart flutter against his chest, like a bird in a cage. Please, God, let this not be a dream.
“Azazel?” The word came out in little more than a breath.
Azazel was silent for a long moment, but his tail kept tracing along his leg. “You are bad at pretending to lose. I’ve seen you fight for real.” Janos could feel Azazel smirk against his neck. “Your desires are very transparent.”
This time, Janos turned enough so that his lips could brush against Azazel’s. “I’m still freezing, you know. Thought you were going to keep me warm?” he said with a challenging smirk.
Azazel returned that smirk and wrapped his tail around Janos’ waist, bringing him even closer. A warm hand slipped underneath his nightshirt and Janos soon forgot he’d ever been cold..