In the end, it all came down to the fact that Enjolras didn't drink. Not much, anyway, keeping his alcohol consumption down to the occasional beer or wine at parties.
It was a gloriously warm, sunny Wednesday in mid-June. Not that Enjolras would have noticed much, seeing how he was walking around in his own storm front that would have put a Midwest tornado to shame. The others were already gathered in the back room of the Musain, the coffee shop and bar that was the usual meeting place for their little group of friends. A lot of them, like Enjolras, were politically active on campus, either as members of the student parliament or in various clubs and organizations that were dedicated to social change, both in and off campus.
Joly, Bousset and Feulli were halfway through completely humiliating Marius in a game of cards, with Courfeyrac watching and giving the occasional comment, which had everyone laughing, including poor Marius.
Enjolras let himself fall down into a chair next to Combeferre. His friend had had his nose buried in today's paper, but immediately looked up.
“I take it the meeting with the dean didn't go well?” Combeferre raised an eyebrow.
“No, it didn't,” Enjolras replied, running a hand through his hair before giving an angry sigh. “He's not budging an inch.”
All eyes were on him now, the card game and various conversations immediately forgotten. Only Grantaire was still nursing his beer.
“Well, fuck,” Bahorel said, summing everyone's thoughts up nicely.
Enjolras smirked. “Agreed. Not that I'd had much hope of him actually letting us go ahead with it, seeing how scared he is of offending that bunch of conservative money-grubbers that call themselves alumni. He might as well tie some strings to his arms and legs so that they can puppet him around even more effectively.”
“So, what are we going to do now?” Combeferre let his gaze wander through the room, finally settling back on Enjolras.
“I've got half a mind to go ahead with it anyway.”
Grantaire snorted: “One would think you're in love with the head of campus security, seeing how often you get yourself arrested and dragged to his office.”
Courfeyrac's elbow shot out, nudging Grantaire in the side, and Enjolras saw him mouthing something that looked like “shut up” while giving Grantaire an imploring look.
Enjolras didn't even grace that comment with a reply, but instead turned to the group as a whole: “I'm not inclined to just let this go. This is important, and we can't back down now just because the authorities want us to shut up.”
“Maybe we can take it off-campus?” Courfeyrac suggested.
“That's certainly a possibility,” Combeferre said with a nod, “but I think we should make some further efforts to sway the dean's opinion first. After all, this is a campus affair.”
“Maybe if we get enough support from the student body, so that the dean has no choice but let us go ahead with it if he doesn't want an even bigger problem on his hands?” Jehan piped up, tapping his pen against the sheet of paper in front of him. “It's a given that I'll write about it in the next issue of The Barricade. And maybe I can get an article in the other student papers as well. That should get us some publicity.”
“That's a good idea.” Enjolras nodded. “We need a new plan of attack here. See if we can't get those who usually just stand by engaged.”
“What you need,” Grantaire said, leaning back in his chair and grinning, “is a drink or two. I mean, look at yourself. You're so tense, I can hear you grinding your teeth from back here.”
Combeferre rolled his eyes: “Honestly, Grantaire.”
“You know,” Enjolras gave Grantaire a pensive look, then smirked, “that's the first good idea you've had in weeks. I really do feel like a drink or two.”
“Enjolras, it's five in the afternoon!” Joly was obviously aghast, looking at Enjolras as if their leader had just sprouted horns and a tail.
Enjolras gave him a withering look: “I know perfectly well what time it is, Joly. And I feel like having a drink. That, or kicking something.”
“I'll get us something from the bar, then.” Grantaire stood up, his grin even wider than before. Only two minutes later, he returned with two shot glasses and a bottle of tequila: “I figured you needed something stronger than beer.”
Enjolras didn't answer, filling both glasses before pushing one of them over the table towards the other man. Grantaire raised his glass in mock salute: “To the cause.” Enjolras didn't reply, downing his tequila instead.
“Anyway,” Courfeyrac said, the strange spectacle that was unwinding in front of their eyes having clearly thrown him off a bit, “if we want to get some more publicity, we should also try getting a few of the other groups on board.”
“Can you talk with the others on the student council, 'ferre?” Enjolras said, then smirked: “I'm afraid they won't listen to me. Too radical and all that.” He waved a hand dismissively.
“Sure.” Combeferre was eying his friend with obvious concern, but didn't say anything, knowing too well that opposition usually only served to make Enjolras even more hell-bent on whatever it was he was doing.
They spent some more time discussing strategy before going back to cards, newspapers and Courfeyrac's latest cause of heartbreak. By the time most of the Amis went home, Enjolras and Grantaire were at the half-mark of the bottle, with Enjolras feeling undeniably unsteady but, too his disappointment, not all that more relaxed. On the contrary, the booze seemed to have put him into an mood for even more rants than usual. Finally, Grantaire put the bottle down and pulled him out of his seat.
“Time to go, my friend. Seems like you're one of those people who get drunk but not happy drunk.”
“So much for your great ideas,” Enjolras mumbled.
Grantaire just shrugged: “You should've known better.”
They left the Musian, Grantaire still seeming admirably sober, and turned in the direction of the dormitories. The cool, fresh air made Enjolras' head clear a bit, but he still wasn't sure how they had ended up in front of Grantaire's tiny apartment. He had probably missed his turn somewhere.
“Come on, I'll make us some coffee,” Grantaire said, unlocking the door and giving Enjolras a slightly tipsy smile. “You look like you need some so you can remember where you live.”
Enjolras gave a derisive snort: “I know where I live.”
Still, he followed Grantaire inside. The room was as chaotic as he had always imagined it to be, with clothes and books and sketches piling up on every available surface. He looked around, searching for some place to sit down while Grantaire busied himself in the small kitchen, and finally decided that the pile of stuff on the swivel chair in front of what was probably a desk was easiest to move.
Carefully, Enjolras piled the stack of books and papers on top of another stack that was resting on the desk, creating a precariously swaying tower of novels, biographies and paperbacks. The last one was a sketchbook, and Enjolras started to idly flip through it while he sat himself down on the chair. You had to hand it to Grantaire, even though he was a nuisance and a boozer, he was a really talented artist. His favorite medium seemed to be charcoal, and Enjolras quickly became mesmerized by the myriad of subjects that Grantaire had put in his sketchbook. There was a whole sheet covered in hands, old and young, an evocative sketch of the campus quad at lunch break, and... him. Enjolras blinked in surprise. Yes, that was definitely him. On several pages. His face at different angles, with different expressions, giving a speech, sitting in the Musain joking around with Courfeyrac...
And suddenly, the sketches were gone, having been snatched up by Grantaire, who was pushing a mug of steaming hot black coffee into his hands before turning around and shoving the sketchbook underneath a pile of clothes, looking as flustered as if Enjolras had just found his porn collection.
“You shouldn't snoop around in other people's stuff,” Grantaire muttered, pushing some clothes off the bed and sitting himself down.
“Why not? They're very good. And you want to be an artist, don't you? So you're going to have to show your drawings to someone, eventually.”
“Yeah, but not those.” Grantaire pulled a frown. “Those are private.”
Enjolras raised his mug to his lips, contemplating Grantaire through the mists of steam that rose off the black surface. “Well I think I have a right to see them,” he finally said, his lips twitching into a wicked grin, “seeing how I'm on a lot of them.”
Grantaire's ears actually turned red at that, and he looked away. “Still.”
There was a long silence while Enjolras sipped his coffee and Grantaire continued staring at a pair of socks on the floor as if he were seeing them for the fist time.
“...are you in love with me, Grantaire?”
Enjolras wasn't sure if it was the alcohol that made him do it, or the way Grantaire was looking at him from the corners of his eyes, drunk and shy and pining. Either way, he put his mug on the floor, took two steps over to the bed, grabbed Grantaire's face in his hands and pressed his lips against Grantaire's.
Grantaire gave a surprised noise, and for a short moment Enjolras thought he would pull back, but then Grantaire pressed into the kiss with a heated whimper. When Grantaire nipped at his lower lip, Enjolras took it at a sign to deepen the kiss, pushing his tongue between the other man's lips, which opened without a moment's hesitation.
By now, Grantaire's fingers were clenched into the fabric of Enjolras' shirt, fumbling and pulling until it came loose, giving Grantaire and opening to slide his hands underneath. Enjolras moaned, Grantaire's fingers leaving a trail of goosebumps in their wake, and moved his lips down over Grantaire's jawline, peppering kisses all along the way until he was halfway down Grantaire's neck, where he started sucking and nipping at the sensitive skin.
Grantaire, in response, arched his neck and sighed, his fingers raking over Enjolras' ribs. Enjolras dimly remembered someone saying that being really drunk inhibited one's arousal, but he sure as hell wasn't feeling it. Pushing Grantaire's collar out of the way, he sought out Grantaire's collar bone and let his tongue trace its shape before biting down hard enough to leave a mark.
“Oh, fuck, Enjolras.” Moving back a bit, Grantaire gave him a grin before pulling his t-shirt over his head and tossing it to the floor. He then attempted to do the same with Enjolras' shirt, but only ended up snapping off two buttons before Enjolras caught his wrists, pushed him away and did it himself.
For a short moment, Grantaire just stared at him, his eyes wide and his lips half opened, as if Enjolras was the most beautiful thing he had ever seen in his whole life. Then he moved in again, licking at Enjolras' sternum before homing in on Enjolras' nipple.
Enjolras gave a sharp hiss and slid his fingers into Grantaire's dark curls. Why had he never done this before? ...oh, yeah, because this was Grantaire, who was annoying, cynical to the point of being nihilistic and Jesus Christ did he look good with his shirt off. Enjolras pushed one of his hands down over the back of Grantaire's neck, following the line of his spine, which got him a strangled moan from Grantaire, still busy with tonguing Enjolras' nipple.
Enjolras spread his fingers, his hand exploring all of Grantaire's back, the little bumps of his spine and curves of his shoulder blades.
Meanwhile, Grantaire was moving down over Enjolras' body, placing a line of hot, sucking kisses all down towards Enjolras' navel, at which point he slid off the bed, pushing Enjolras' legs apart before kneeling down between them.
Leaning back on his elbows, Enjolras looked down at Grantaire, watching as Grantaire fumbled with the buttons on Enjolras' jeans and laughing when Grantaire started cursing whoever it had been who had made these things so damn hard to open. As soon as he had overcome that obstacle, though, Enjolras helpfully lifted his hips while Grantaire pulled down Enjolras' pants and boxers in one hectic movement. You had to hand it to Grantaire, when he did put his mind on something, he was amazingly focused, even when he was thoroughly sloshed.
And those people who had said that thing about alcohol and sex really did have it totally wrong. He was half-hard already, and it took only a few licks from Grantaire's tongue before he was completely erect, at which point Grantaire took him in his mouth.
“Shit, Grantaire, you really don't waste any time, do you?” Enjolras moaned, leaning his head back and closing his eyes.
Grantaire just chuckled, sending some utterly amazing vibrations down Enjolras' cock.
For a while, Enjolras just stayed the way he was, eyes closed and simply enjoying the sensation of Grantaire's hot, hungry mouth moving up and down over his length, Grantaire's tongue occasionally swirling around its head.
After a while, though, he felt himself getting dizzy, and he sat up again, looking at Grantaire and oh shit did Grantaire look sexy, lips wrapped around Enjolras' cock, his eyes closed and his whole expression radiating pure bliss. Enjolras moaned, pushing one hand into Grantaire's hair and threading his fingers through the curls.
Grantaire opened his eyes and looked up at Enjolras through his lashes, smiling at him with his eyes. Then, Grantaire reached down, pushing one hand down the front of his own pants, stroking himself in time with the movements of his head, and that sight alone was almost enough to make Enjolras come.
In the end, it was Grantaire who got there first, but only by a few moments, whimpering around Enjolras' cock and looking so wanton and happy that Enjolras just couldn't, tipping his head back with a deep, drawn-out moan as he came.
Panting, Enjolras collapsed back onto the bed, his head swimming from both the alcohol and Grantaire's blowjob, sighing when Grantaire finally pulled back and crawled onto the bed next to him.
“So you're not in love with me, huh?”
Grantaire kissed him, and if he hadn't just come, Enjolras would have gotten hard again from that kiss, tasting himself on Grantaire's tongue.
“No, you drunk idiot. I'm not. I always give guys blowjobs when I invite them over for coffee.” Grantaire's voice, even though it was slurred, was still able to carry enough sarcasm to remind Enjolras why he had thought he didn't like the guy, who was always either making fun of him or trying to derail any argument Enjolras put forth.
But when he turned his head to look at Grantaire, the scathing remark that was on his tongue got stuck on the way out, because Grantaire was looking at him with a love and devotion that Enjolras would have never thought the other man capable of.
For a while, both of them didn't move, just lying there looking at each other, until the silence turned somewhat awkward.
“...you still want some coffee?”
Grantaire got up, picking up both of their mugs on his way to the kitchen, where he poured out the cold coffee into the sink before filling them again.
“Here you go.”