Adam isn't a patient man, but some things are worth waiting for: his first Grammy, the new Dolce spring line, Kris, Kris, Kris.
Adam can be patient when he needs to be, and he has; he's held back the declarations ever since he met Kris, content to be his best friend through the show and the tours, through the highs and lows of Kris's divorce, and even through Kris's rebounds. That was the hardest part—watching Kris date first his own PA, then Adam's PA, then Ryan Seacrest's PA.
While Adam could appreciate the discretion of keeping it all within the 19E family, it'd started to feel borderline incestuous.
For three years Adam bided his time, waiting until Kris was single—legally and emotionally—before making his move. Until last night.
He'd brought some sirloin steaks from Cut and a couple bottles of wine over to Kris's condo for movie night. They'd watched The Hangover together (Kris's choice) and cuddled on the couch in the flickering TV light, long past the credits and into the late-night infomercials, and it had ended perfectly, Kris's mouth soft and eager against his, Kris's hand on Adam's cock as he thrust into Adam's grip, and Adam had passed out with Kris wrapped securely in his arms, already enjoying their happily ever after.
So Adam's a little confused why Kris is asking him for the phone number of one of his dancers.
He'd just shuffled into the kitchen, with bed head and stubble, and god knows the state of his makeup, to find Kris humming to himself, doing that ridiculous bump-and-grind dance that makes Adam laugh and turns him on in equal measure. And Kris smiled at him, asked if he wanted toast, and then asked for Sonia's phone number, just like that.
"Why?" Adam blurts.
Kris shrugs. "She's cute. And I'm single again. What, you don't think she'd say no to this, do you?" He gestures cockily to his wiggling hips, but when Adam fails to respond, his face slips into a worried frown. The frown that makes Adam want to tear down all the obstacles in Kris's path and has him fishing out his phone to pull up that number.
No, wait. Fuck Sonia, Kris is Adam's now. Or he's supposed to be, after what they shared last night. He can still remember the sounds Kris made, whimpering into his shoulder, moaning against his cheek. And the way he'd tasted, sweet and tart from the merlot…. Oh no.
"How's your head?" Adam asks, trying not to let his panic show.
"Fine. A little dehydrated, but that's red wine for you." Kris points at Adam's grimace. "Your teeth are still purple."
Adam grabs a napkin and scrubs at his teeth while Kris smiles and bops some more, spreading apricot jam over two slices of wheat toast. If Kris isn't hung over, and he isn't freaking out about what they did…. Or maybe he is freaking out, and this is the denial phase?
"So about last night…." Adam says, not really sure how to put it but needing to make sure they both remember it, nobody's repressing anything, it wasn't just a beautiful dream.
"Yeah, thanks for coming over. I feel like I've barely seen you this month; I was starting to forget what you looked like. We should try to do it more often."
"Do…it," Adam frowns, trying to interpret Kris's expression.
"Yeah, just hanging out, you know? And the other thing, too. Sometimes you really need a friend to help let off some steam." Kris gives a saucy eyebrow pop and then ducks his head, laughing at himself. "You know what I mean."
Oh, Adam knows what Kris means, alright. Only it wasn't steam they'd let off last night, not the way Adam remembers it. "Yeah, sure. Totally," he says through gritted teeth, trying to play it as cool as Kris. Because he refuses to accept what's going on in Kris's head, not after all his careful planning, the hand jobs and making out, and his waiting finally, finally over. "Look," he starts, determined to set the record straight here and now.
Kris glances at the clock on the microwave and startles. "Dude, you're supposed to be at the studio in fifteen minutes!"
Adam checks the clock and stops thinking about his Kris-problems for 0.2 seconds, just long enough to remember: "Oh fuck, David Guetta!" The threat of missing his introductory meeting with the producer kicks his ass into gear, and he speed-dials the studio as he runs in search of his shoes.
He scoops up his jacket and belt, piles his boots on top, and runs for the front door barefoot, yelling, "I gotta go, talk to you later, bye!"
Kris catches him as he's throwing the dead bolt. His hand fists around Adam's shoulder, spins him around, and Kris leans up and kisses Adam hard on the lips.
For a few heady seconds, Adam forgets all about his quest for a number one dance hit. And then Kris pulls away, shoves half a slice of toast into Adam's gaping mouth, and grins.
"Break a leg," Kris says. He picks up the boot Adam dropped and stacks it on top of his pile. "I'll get the door for you," he offers when Adam just stands there, choking on jam and bread.
Adam makes it through his meeting with nearly half his attention on business—and Neil claims he can't multitask—but as soon as it's over he starts pacing and pulling at his hair. Everything had gone perfectly last night, exactly like he'd planned, but somehow it had turned out completely, utterly wrong.
Kris seems to think Adam was joking. That he wasn't serious. That last night was just…friends helping each other out, for fuck's sake. Granted, Adam didn't give the speech he’d rehearsed, but it'd happened so naturally—both of them moving into that first kiss, Kris tilting his head and pressing into it, his hand on Adam's hip pulling him close—declarations of intent had seemed superfluous.
Okay, Adam can admit that he fucked up.
Kris isn't a mind reader. Adam should have used actual words instead of talking with his hands and his dick. So now he has to make it right. They need a do-over as soon as possible…before Kris gets around to asking someone else out.
Twenty minutes later, Adam is prostrate on the break room sofa, still wracking his brain for ideas. Because he can't just call Kris and say "I love you," not the first time he says it. No, he needs to do it right this time. He needs a brand new romantic plan. And he already blew all his best ideas on last night's debacle.
So he does what he always, inevitably does when he runs out of ideas: he calls Gwen.
Gwen, the traitorous PA who went on two (two!) dates with the man of Adam's dreams, listens politely to his verbal flailing until Adam asks what Kris did on their dates. Flowers, chocolates, nice restaurants: all the romantic details he'd forbade her from sharing three weeks ago are now high-priority, need-to-know issues.
That's when she starts laughing at him.
Adam doesn't waste time on threats. The bitch knows his Twitter password; he's not suicidal enough to fire her. "Please," he says.
"He's a guy, Adam. How do you usually show a guy you like him?"
Adam bites his lip. He'd given his last boyfriend a black satin blindfold and a pair of padded handcuffs on their third date. And the relationship before that had started as a particularly memorable encounter in the VIP bathroom of a Toronto club. But Adam isn't ready to share Kris's body with the rest of the world yet—or ever—and he's pretty sure Kris would think sex toys were another joke at this point.
Besides, he wants to see Kris's eyelids flutter closed again, feel those guitar calluses catching against his thighs, sliding harsh over the head of his cock—
Gwen clears her throat knowingly, and Adam flushes and glares at the phone. "Just take him someplace nice for dinner," she finally says. "I'll get you a car and a resi at Geoffrey's. You can do the whole candlelit dinner thing, a moonlit walk on the beach, and then fuck him on the ride back from Malibu."
Adam pictures Kris's tan skin glowing by candlelight and gives Gwen the go ahead.
But when he texts Kris about their dinner plans, Kris texts back from rehearsal, can't tonight. people coming ovr. Adam blinks at the message, relieved that Kris is having multiple people over, not just him and a date. But Kris's next message reads, you should come! bring a date if you want.
Adam nearly throws his phone out the window.
Adam goes to Kris's party. He would've preferred a romantic dinner in Malibu (and the limousine-fucking—Gwen knows him so well), but spending time with Kris is the priority right now. If that means sharing Kris's attention with a dozen of his closest friends, so be it. He's making his declarations tonight, come hell, high water, or public humiliation.
That doesn't mean he wants to make a public ass of himself, though.
Knowing he's playing dirty, Adam rings Kris's doorbell a full hour before he's expected. Hopefully, he can straighten out Kris's confusion before anyone else arrives. And then Kris will cancel the party, and they can skip straight to making love in Kris's bed. Adam got to taste his mouth last night, but he's dying to taste the rest of him, get his mouth on his—
Kris opens the door in a t-shirt and board shorts, and Adam can't help the smile that steals over his lips.
"Hey," Kris says, clearly surprised, "you're early." He notices the bouquet of sterling roses in Adam's fist and cocks his head, chuckling. "For me? You shouldn't have." He's rolling his eyes, like he thinks Adam's still joking, and Adam thrusts the purple flowers into his arms.
"Yes, I should've," he says earnestly and leans across the threshold, cups Kris's face in his hands, and kisses him, sweet and gentle.
Kris is right there with him for a brief moment, kissing back, until he turns his head away and laughs again. He retreats to the kitchen with the flowers, saying some bullshit about saving that stuff for after the party, and Adam's ego takes another hit before he sucks it up and follows.
"I can't wait that long," Adam tells him, and Kris gives him a smirk, like he thinks Adam's talking about sex. Adam kind of wants to strangle him.
"Well, you're gonna have to try," Kris says, opening a cabinet and looking inside. "'Cause I've got guests coming over and I'm not even dressed yet, unlike some people." He gives Adam a fond once over before opening a second cabinet. "You look like you're heading to a premiere. That's a new jacket, isn't it?"
It is, in fact. He bought it this afternoon, a sartorial pep-rally for his second attempt to woo Kris, and Adam loves Kris just a little bit more for noticing. Before he can answer, Kris huffs and moves on to a third cabinet. What's he looking for, a flower vase? Should Adam point out the empty vase on the windowsill?
"Didn't I say it's a low-key barbeque?" Kris shakes his head. "I don't know why I bothered. You're always over-dressed anyway. It's like you don't realize everybody already wants you; you don't have to try so hard." He finally runs out of cabinets and gives Adam an amused, exasperated look.
"I don't care if everybody else wants me," Adam says, voice rough around the sudden lump in his throat. "Just you."
Kris blinks at him.
"Just you," Adam repeats, and Kris looks away, his cheeks turning red.
"I think I proved that last night, don't you?" Kris asks, voice soft.
Adam spots the crack in Kris's casual act, and his heart throbs. "I was trying to say something last night," Adam says, taking a step around the counter. Kris's face gets even redder, his eyes going wide. "But I don't think you got the message. So I'm gonna try again. I wanted to take you to a fancy restaurant tonight. I bought flowers, a new jacket—" The corner of Kris's mouth twitches up, and Adam suppresses his own smile, growling, "I'm trying to romance you, you asshole! Stop making this hard!"
He doesn't get to see Kris's reaction to his words, because Kris is suddenly in his arms, and Adam's eyes slip closed as Kris kisses him. It takes Adam a few seconds to remember that this isn't any better than last night, to find the strength to push Kris away.
"No way," Adam pants. "Not until we're on the same page. I'm talking joint touring, shared closet-space, and maybe even rings someday. Not fuck-buddies, or whatever the hell you thought we were doing last night. If you can't—"
Kris cuts him off with another kiss, mumbling words against Adam's mouth that sound like "I wasn't," and "Please," the consonants tangled up in Adam's lips as Kris's hands run through Adam's hair. Kris makes that whimpering sound again, the one that had nearly killed Adam last night, and Adam stumbles back until he's pinned against the counter, Kris all over him. He still wants to talk about this; he knows they aren't finished—he hasn't even gotten to the L word, yet—but Kris feels so good in his arms. Okay, they can make out a little longer and then get back to the talking.
But when Kris starts pushing Adam's jacket off, like he's done talking for the night, Adam tries to get them back on plan. "The party—"
"No party," Kris says, breathless and beautifully flushed. "No one's coming."
"But you said…."
"I wasn't sure," Kris blurts, his gaze dropping nervously to Adam's collarbone. "I didn't know what to think, so I just. I lied."
"About?" Adam asks, his pulse suddenly tripping all over itself.
"Last night, tonight. I didn't ask before I seduced you, and if you didn't think it was…. I wasn't gonna assume…."
The sudden, expanding crush of joy in his chest steals Adam's breath for a moment, and he has to kiss Kris again. Kris groans into it, tugging at his jacket. When Adam can finally breathe, he whispers into Kris's ear, "I meant it. And for the record, I'm pretty sure I seduced you."
Kris's laughter brushes his cheek. "No way, I totally made the first move."
"I bought you dinner. And wine," Adam reminds him, finally letting the jacket slide off his shoulders. "And flowers."
"And I invited you over," Kris says. "Twice. So can I lure you into my bedroom this time, or are you gonna keep us on the couch again?" He waggles his eyebrows and wiggles his hips under Adam's hands, and Adam is torn between laughing and going down on his knees right there in the kitchen.
"Hmm. Why don't you show me what you've got planned," Adam decides, and lets Kris tug him upstairs to his bed.