Sam was a bastard, Gabriel concluded after six days. In truth, he'd already suspected as much after three, but the point was firmly cemented after six days. Six days of pure torture, as far as Gabriel was concerned. Because following the tulip incident Sam had spent every evening with Gabriel, and yet, despite previously having been the one to initiate intimacy, for some unfathomable reason Sam suddenly... didn't.
He came over, made dinner, and told Gabriel about his day. They then settled down on the couch, watched a movie and inevitably started making out barely halfway through. But then Sam would pull away, say something vague about studying, and then go home to his ratty shared apartment, leaving Gabriel with a hard-on and massive doubts. Every goddamn night.
Gabriel had his theories, but none of them seemed to fit. Sam could be punishing him for being a major douchewad, but first of all, Sam claimed to have forgiven him already, and punishing anyone for anything seemed very out of character for Sam. Not to mention the fact that he was also punishing himself, because the effect all the making out had on Sam was absolutely impossible to miss, pressing insistently against Gabriel's leg night after night.
Which brought Gabriel's next theory to mind. Maybe Sam was just kinky, and had some sort of frustration fetish. Gabriel sure hoped not, because as open as he was to kinky things, that particular preference would really not help his blood pressure at all. Besides, six whole days was pushing it, even for a masochist.
So in the end, Gabriel was just lost. But at least he had never been too proud to beg.
“What am I doing wrong?” he blurted out over dinner, flushing slightly at Sam's baffled face. Okay, so Gabriel might not have been proud, but he couldn't really boast of being subtle either.
“I'm sorry, what?” Sam frowned, still mostly focused on his food.
“I mean... are we even on the same page here? I'm not saying all I care about it getting into your pants,” Gabriel babbled. “I'm just confused, since you, y'know, kinda jumped me that first time and now all of a sudden it's like there's no getting past second base and-”
“Woah, hang on, what?”
“It's just, you keep going home every night, and while I'm totally a fan of all the heavy petting I'm not gonna lie, I'm kinda at an age where not getting anything more is really frustrating, you know what I mean?”
Sam gaped at him. “But... I've been waiting for you!”
“For me? For me to what? Die of perpetual blue-balls?!”
“No!” Sam said. “No, you... never ask me to stay...”
Gabriel's entire line of thought screeched to a halt, complete with cartoony sound effects in his mind. “Say what?”
Sam pushed his plate away, clearly having lost all interest in food. “Look, I didn't wanna rush things this time, since you were the one to slam on the brakes both times I tried going for it, and I figured since you never really went below the belt that you just... weren't ready or something.”
Gabriel was sure his eyes were wide as saucers. “Seriously? I'm over forty, Sam, it's not like I'm a blushing virgin or anything, here.”
“That's not what I mean. You can't deny you wigged out a bit when things got emotional, so I just thought maybe you wanted to... ease into it or whatever,” Sam explained, hands moving restlessly on the table.
It took Gabriel a few long moments to rearrange his thoughts. Had he really never gone below the belt? As he thought about it, he had to admit it was probably true, but not for the reason Sam thought. In all honesty Gabriel had been worried he might actually end up creaming his shorts like a teenager right there on the couch if he didn't keep himself in check.
“Well... clearly we need to work on our communication here,” he said dryly.
“No shit,” Sam sighed, and rubbed a hand over his face.
Silence descended on the kitchen, both of them lost to their thoughts. Eventually Gabriel shook himself out of it, determined to get it right this time.
“Would you like to stay here tonight and get hot and heavy with me?”
Sam's smile lit up Gabriel's whole world.