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'Tis The Season

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The lights were off in the bedroom, and Rupert could only make out Ethan's form with his hands, warm on bare skin, with his mouth, following and tracing ancient, long-forgotten lines. Ethan murmured words of magic and love in his ear, a breathless laughter ending with a moan and a kiss.

"You forget, sometimes, that we are enemies," Giles whispered later against Ethan's chest, against the heartbeat and the solid warmth and the faint sheen of sweat.

Ethan laughed again. "We are not enemies," he said, words loud and crisp in the utter silence of after midnight. "You are your own enemy, and I am but the face that you put to your shame."

In the morning he was gone, nothing of him left but the crumpled sheets and the memories. Giles drank his first cup of tea for the day alone in his kitchen, and glanced at the calendar. December twenty-first. Another apocalypse averted, and Christmas coming soon.