Finn wakes up before Rey gets back, and he wakes up a hero. He's surrounded by people, people who want to congratulate him, people who want to shake his hand and buy him a drink, people who like him. Poe floats around the edge of this crowd in the bar and does his best to--get noticed? Not get noticed? Even he isn't sure.
Jess notices, and she elbows him. "You're the Resistance's best pilot, and he's wearing your jacket. Just go talk to him!"
Before he gets a chance to explain, Finn spots him. "Poe! Poe Dameron!" he calls, leaping up from the booth where he's seated and waving him (and, by extension, Snap and Jess) over with a big grin. The crowd parts in front of them, and Finn catches Poe in a hug that Poe is sure he's imagining is a little too tight. He doesn't imagine Finn saying I'm so glad you're here into his ear, though, and that sticks his feet to the floor, heavy like ferrocrete, where a moment before he'd been ready to say his greetings and head away.
"They fixed my jacket," Finn says, breaking his grip on Poe to spin around and show them all the back of it, which has been stitched together pretty expertly and patched with a close but not quite swatch of nearly-matching fabric.
(When Finn had been dragged back to base after the battle with his jacket nearly sliced in half and a matching slice cut out of his back, Poe had thought it was the least he could do to rescue the thing and have it fixed--it does suit Finn, and it was something he could do besides hover awkwardly around the medbay.)
"Looking good!" Poe says, and Finn grins back at him.
Behind him, Snap pointedly clears his throat; Poe had very obviously forgotten that the other pilots were even there. "You gonna introduce us, boss?"
"Right, sorry. Finn, this is Snap Wexley and Jessika Pava. Guys, this is Finn."
"It's nice to finally meet you," Snap says, which is slightly more loaded than Poe had hoped for.
"Poe's told us so much about you," Jessika adds, elbowing her CO in a way that isn't helping at all--Poe can only remember telling his pilots about Finn maybe twice, but he's pretty sure he referred to Finn as that cute stormtrooper both times.
Finn gives them a skeptical look. "Didn't think there was much to tell--I didn't even have a real name when we met." There's a momentary awkward pause while they all digest that one, and Finn, upon realizing, plows through it with determination. "Would you guys like anything to drink?" He motions to an array of glasses on the table at the booth they're standing over. "People keep buying me drinks, and there's no way I can drink all of these myself."
Snap's face lights up, and he says, "Pretty sure we can take some of those off your hands," and they all pile into the booth. Jess grabs a tumbler of something dark and neat; Snap grabs a tall mug of ale; and while Poe is surveying the bounty of alcohol laid out before them, Finn pushes him a glass full of something bright blue with a small paper umbrella stuck in the top.
"This one tastes nice," Finn says in apparent explanation. Poe looks at the drink, then back up at Finn, who he now notices has a matching paper umbrella tucked into the lapel of the jacket. He smiles and tucks his own behind his ear before taking a sip of the drink.
The evening passes quickly, with other pilots and friends stopping by the booth, taking a drink or leaving a drink, visiting, well-wishing, bragging, flirting, remembering. Snap and Jess have commandeered all the paper umbrellas and are having a four-handed sword fight with them when Finn grabs Poe's sleeve and drags him close to whisper, "Do you know someplace I could stay tonight? A couple of people have offered, but I didn't think…" He flounders for a second, obviously embarrassed. "I don't think that's what I'm looking for."
"You don't have your own quarters? Where were you staying before?"
"Medbay," Finn says. "And before that, I just slept on the Millennium Falcon. I figured I'd get assigned something, but nobody ever said anything and I--sometimes it's hard to ask."
Poe checks his chrono--it's too late now to bug the quartermaster, but-- "I'm sure we can scrounge you up something."
"What are we scrounging?" Snap asks, only half paying attention.
"Someplace for Finn to stay tonight," Poe says, ignoring Jess' elbow in his side again. Poe knows for a fact that there are empty rooms in the pilots' quarters; they'd lost a staggering number of people in the assault on Starkiller Base. But it feels strange and a little morbid to put Finn into a dead man's room. Clearing the now-empty rooms of their effects hadn't been a priority, and Poe knows he'd feel weird sleeping in a space like that. There is an obvious answer he's trying to avoid, but it's enough that Finn trusted him enough to ask, he can't--
"You've got a bunch of extra space, right?" Poe stifles a groan at Jess' innocent-sounding question. She knows that he does. It's one of the perks of being CO, a larger suite with no roommate.
"Yeah, but I'm sure Finn wants his own place to stay. We can probably find him someplace--"
Finn looks a little surprised at the suggestion--that he might get his own quarters? Or that he wouldn't want to share? "I don't mind," he says. "Pretty sure I've shared a room my whole life."
Rather than let that one stand, Poe slams back what's left of his last drink and they all head to the pilots quarters. Snap knows a guy in Supply who lets them haul an extra cot out of storage and they drag it, wobbling slightly, to Poe's room. Finn basically demands that he be allowed to help, and while he and Snap are getting the cot situated, Poe pulls Jess aside in the hallway.
"Somebody had to do something," she says, before he can berate her, "Because you were lined up for those shots and you weren't taking them, and a good wingman--"
"I didn't need a wingman tonight, Jess."
She gives him a knowing look. "You called him 'that cute stormtrooper' a bunch, boss. Way more than was called for, that's for sure."
"Why do I ever talk to you?" Poe asks, mostly rhetorically.
"It's a real mystery, boss."
"He doesn't need that from me right now. He needs a friend, and that's what--"
"I don't think you get to decide that for him," Jess says.
At that point, Snap sticks his head out into the hallway to see if there are any spare sheets anywhere or if they're going to have to go scrounge some. ("She's right," he adds. "I didn't hear what she just said, but whatever it was, she's right." Jess looks a little smug.) Poe gives her a serious look and goes to dig through his closet.
Finn insists on putting the sheets on the bed himself, and Poe says, "We'll get you set tomorrow, get you in the system, get all the stuff you need. The Resistance takes care of its own, I promise." BB-8, in its charging station beside Poe's bed, warbles an affirmative.
Finn pauses where he's leaned over the bed, doesn't look up.
"But you're welcome here, for as long as you need."
He looks up then, and smiles. "Thanks, Poe," he says, and the words sound deliberate and sure.
"You're welcome, Finn." Poe can't help the warmth in his voice.
At his voice, Finn looks up. His eyes are big, his expression terrified. "I don't--you can't--I'm not going back. You can't make me go back."
Poe drops onto the bed next to Finn and looks him in the eye. "No one's going to make you go back. You're here. You're safe. You're good, Finn." He leans into Finn, puts an arm around his shoulder and a hand on his back until he feels Finn's breathing slow to a more reasonable rate.
BB-8 peeks out from under the blanket it'd managed to pull off the bed and whirs calmingly.
"I'm good," Finn repeats. It almost sounds like he believes it.
On the way home, BB-8 warbles a question at him.
"I imagine he's all situated," Poe answers. "You'll have me all to yourself, don't worry." BB-8's response is startled, and Poe laughs. "No, no, I know. I like him too."
What he finds when he gets back is Finn, still on the cot in his room, unconvincingly reading something on a datapad. Even from the doorway, Poe can tell that the contents of his closet have been disturbed. The most obvious signs of this are the things from it which are spread on his bed: a framed holo of him, his parents, and his sister, taken on Yavin 4; a box containing a number of medals he's been awarded; a container that's mostly full with homemade cookies; and an old model T-65 X-wing he's had since he was a kid. He looks at the bed and then at Finn. He asks instead: "Did you have any trouble with the quartermaster?"
Finn shrugs. "Got a room, got a few things to put in it. Clothes, a blaster, a datapad. I didn't have any--" He gesticulates here; whether he means to wave at the things on Poe's bed is debatable. "--any stuff. Any people stuff. Just assigned stuff." He changes the subject too quickly for Poe to respond to that. "Your cookies are awful."
Poe laughs. "Snap's mom keeps sending them."
"They're awful." Finn looks away, and then back up. "I shouldn't have gone through your stuff, but--you're not the first person who's left. Rey left, and then you, and I didn't have any things and I started thinking about what would be left of me here if I left…"
That's a question Poe doesn't have a good answer for. Instead, he says, "It's okay. I wouldn't have left you with my stuff if I didn't trust you with it." He doesn't realize it's true until he's saying it, but it is--he's trusted Finn, really, since the moment Finn pulled him aside on the Star Destroyer. He's trustworthy and handsome and it looks a little like he may have raided Poe's closet for clothes too and Poe is having a little trouble handling all this.
"You should come see," Finn says, standing up from the cot and watching Poe's face carefully. Poe's curious what it is he's seeing, so he shrugs agreeably and before he knows what's happening, Finn has said come with me and has grabbed his hand and is pulling him down the corridor. There's a moment--of maybe defensiveness, maybe realization?--where Finn looks back at him and Finn's grip falters for a second, but Poe says nothing, just smiles at him. The hand-holding is unexpected, but nothing he's going to complain about. (He can hear BB-8 trailing along behind them, making inquisitive noises.)
They weave through a maze of corridors. The pilots' quarters are close to the hangar, and Poe's pretty sure he's never been back this far into the base. Eventually, they stop up short in front of a door that looks identical to every other door on the hallway, and Finn doesn't drop Poe's hand to open it. When it does slide open, Poe sees a room a little smaller than his own, with a bed and a closet and chair (with the patched-up jacket slung over its back) and a table, and on the table and the floor and the wall are things: some small carved statues, a portable holochess board, some seashells, a long scarf, a ceramic vase, some rolled-up sheets that look like they might be equipment blueprints. Most prominently, there is a large framed holo of Yavin 4 hanging over Finn's bed that makes Poe stop in his tracks. Even BB-8 lets out an impressed whistle.
"Where did you get all this?" he asks, not taking his eyes off the holo.
"You know that guy Snap knows in Supply? I went back to talk to him about when he needed the cot back, and it turns out they've got a huge pile of stuff you're allowed to have. He let me take anything I could carry."
Poe looks around the room, raises an eyebrow.
"Well, a couple of trips-worth of what I could carry." Finn looks pretty smug. "I don't know if you've heard, but I'm kind of a big deal now."
Poe chuckles, and his eyes drift back to the Yavin 4 holo. It's a shot of the Massassi temple, surrounded by trees, the sky a brilliant blue above, Yavin hanging overhead. Looking at it, Poe aches with a homesickness he hadn't known he still had left in him. BB-8 seems to notice, nudging at his leg, and on his other side, Finn gently knocks their shoulders together.
"It's yours, if you'd like it."
"Really?!" The offer blows him away, but he realizes quickly: "I mean, no, I couldn't. It's yours, Finn."
"Yeah, and since it's mine I can do whatever I want with it, and maybe I want to give it to you." There is a pause, and Finn gives him a little smile. "You gave me your jacket."
"It suits you," Poe murmurs, stepping closer to the holo. "This is great, Finn. Thanks." He stares at it, shakes his head in disbelief. "I'm so happy I could kiss you." He had not meant to say that out loud. It has been a long day on little sleep, and he had not meant to say that out loud. He manages not to cringe at himself, and risks a glance over at Finn, who appears to be studiously trying not to look at him, but otherwise...unfazed?
"When I went through your stuff," Finn says, "I didn't see anything in there from a girlfriend." It's not exactly an answer.
"Don't have a girlfriend," Poe replies, trying his hardest to keep his voice neutral. "No boyfriend either."
And that's apparently all Finn needs to step up to Poe and kiss him. It's exactly what he's wanted since they met, and it's everything he hoped it would be.
Somewhere, Jess Pava is laughing at him and she doesn't know why.