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The Pros and Cons of Breathing

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After years on the force David Starsky and Ken Hutchinson retired and get married. Kind of.

Marriage between two men isn’t legal yet, but Starsky and Hutch have been married for years now anyways.

But, see the problem is they don’t know they’re married. They never have, and it’s getting a little sad and frustrating for Huggy Bear. He’s been watching them for a long time, and he just can’t figure out why they aren’t together already. He’s ready to lock them in a closet or bang their heads together.

They’ve dated so many women; it’s not even funny anymore. Quite frankly all of their friends are getting tired of it. It’s up to Huggy though, to get the two together. Before one of them makes a mistake.

Huggy looked down at the invitation. He read it again; just to make sure he wasn’t dreaming.

You’re invited to the wedding of David Michael Starsky and Lucy Maire Preston!

****

Hutch stared at the invitation Starsky had handed him.

“What’s this?” he asks.

“Just read it.” Starsky beams at him and Hutch can’t not read it.

Hutch reads it twice before looking at Starsky. “You didn’t tell me you were going to ask her.”

“I didn’t know either! It just happened. Well, you gonna be my best man?”

Hutch smacks Starsky on the back of his head. “Now, that’s a dumb question. Of course I am!”

Starsky beams at him again. “Great! I have to go now. I have to phone Ma before she gets the invite in the mail. She’d box my ears if I didn’t tell her first.”

Hutch laughs as Starsky leaves. As soon as his door shuts, he sighs and sinks back into the couch. He never thought Starsky would get married for real.

What am I going to do now, thought Hutch. I had it all planned out. Now, I think I’m going to have to wait.

****

Starsky sighed as he and his fiancée went to bed.

“What’s wrong David?” Lucy asked.

“Nothing. Just feeling old.”

Lucy giggled. “Oh, honey. You’re not old. I am glad you retired though before we got married. I’d hate to be worried about all the time.” She bit her lip.

Starsky pulled her close. “You wouldn’t have worried. Hutch would’ve been there.” He sighed again. “Ya know, I’m kinda glad Hutch and I retired too. Now maybe we could do something fun for a living and not get shot at.”

Lucy frowned into Starsky’s shoulder. “Maybe Ken could meet a nice girl at our wedding. He seems kind of lonely.”

“Yeah, he does. Maybe one of your bridesmaids, seeing as he’s gonna be my best man.”

“Wonderful.” Lucy leaned in and kissed Starsky.

****

Days passed and Huggy had no plan on how to get his two friends together. He was contemplating kidnapping, when Hutch walked in the door.

“Hey Hug. What’s wrong with you?” he asked as he sat at the counter next to Huggy.

Huggy shrugged. “I’m not sure about this wedding man. It seems kind of sudden.”

Hutch nodded. “Yeah, I know. Starsk is happy though and that’s all anyone wants for their friends.”

Huggy stared at Hutch for a long time. “You love him don’t you?”

“What kind of question is that? Of course I love him!”

Huggy shook his head and turned to get a better look at Hutch. “You don’t want him to marry this Lucy.”

“I have no idea what you’re talking about.” Hutch made to get up, but Huggy grabbed his arm.

“Here me out man. You were gonna say something to Starsky when he gave you that invite, weren’t you?”

Hutch blushed and turned his head away. “Maybe. It doesn’t matter now. Starsk is getting married and having kids and I’ll be Uncle Hutch and that’s fine with me. Listen, I was just here to tell you the rehearsal is in two days. Don’t be late. Bye, Hug.” Hutch left.

Huggy watched him go. And that’s when he got the best idea he had ever had.

****

Huggy brought his plan to fruition after the rehearsal. Starsky had recruited him and Hutch to plan the bachelor party. Lucy’s brothers, father, and other male family members were going to be there. So was Nick, Starsky’s brother. Huggy talked him into helping. It wasn’t hard.

“I don’t like her,” Nick had said to Huggy at the rehearsal.

“Why?”

“Well, she doesn’t seem that fond of Hutch. And that ain’t gonna work with Davey.”

“That is true.”

“Plus,” Nick’s voice lowered to a whisper. “I though Davey would end up with Hutch. Ya know, they’d finally give in and shack up together and garden or something.”

Huggy was surprised. Nick was a lot more excepting and observant than people gave him credit for.

“Do you want to help me?” Huggy asked.

Nick looked at him skeptically. “Help you what?”

“Get Starsky and Hutch together. I have a plan.”

Nick didn’t even pause. “Sure. What is it?”

****

Starsky was not happy. He and Hutch had been stuck in a storage room for hours now. He had a bachelor party to go to. Hutch was looking pretty sick as well.

“Hutch, you okay?” he asked.

“Yeah. Just a bug or something. It’ll go away.”

Starsky nodded, but he was panicking inside. He didn’t like it when Hutch was sick. It brought back memories of the plague.

“You need something? Medicine or whatever?”

“No. I just need rest.”

“Okay.”

There was silence. Starsky was the first to break it; he hated being trapped and being quite. At least there was light and air.

“So, who do you think did this?”

Hutch just looked at him. “Huggy. And probably Nick.”

Starsky was confused. “Why would they do that?”

“I don’t know.”

Starsky stared at Hutch for a long time. Hutch was blushing!

“You’re blushing! You do know why we are stuck in here. Cough it up buddy.”

“What? No.”

Starsky advanced on Hutch. “You do. Tell me or I’m gonna get it my own way.”

“Really, partner, I have no idea why.” Hutch hated lying to Starsky, but having Starsky hate him, even a little, made his chest ache.

Starsky pounced on Hutch. Which was surprising since both men were pushing 50. Hutch wasn’t expecting it and fell backwards with Starsky on top of him.

“Now what are you going to do?” Hutch asked warily.

Starsky grinned. “This!” He then proceeded to tickle Hutch.

“Stop!” Hutch laughed.

“Not until you tell me!”

“No!” Hutch howled with laughter.

“Come on! Give!”

“Okay! Okay! Just stop!”

Starsky stopped, but stayed on top of Hutch just in case he had to tickle him again.

“I…” Hutch panted. “I know you would never hate me and I know you will always be there for me. So, just hear me out before you say anything, okay?”

Starsky nodded. He mimed zipping his lips and throwing away the key. Hutch smiled up at him.

“I had something to tell you when you gave me the invitation. I wasn’t expecting it. The invitation I mean. I had this little speech all planned out. I even had several of your reactions planned out as well. I was going to say, ‘Starsky I love you’. And you would say, ‘I know that’. Then I would have to say, ‘No. I love you and want to move in with you in a big house in a quiet suburb and live happily ever after’. Then it went one of three ways, one being you kiss me and say ‘Me too’, the second where you punch me and never want to see me again, or three you say, ‘Hutch. I love you like a brother, but I don’t care if you’re gay’. Then you’d try to set me up with shady men instead of shady women. Huggy figured that out and I guess recruited Nick into locking us in here so we would divulge our secret passion, have sex, and then live happily ever after. I just…never figured on the wedding invitation,” Hutch finished. He looked at Starsky sadly. “You can talk now.”

“Hutch. I’d never in a million years hate you. No matter what. I would never punch you. I don’t know what to say.”

Hutch winced. “Yeah. So, do you know any shady men?”

Starsky didn’t laugh. “Don’t joke about this.”

“Why not? You’re getting married. You love me like a brother, I’m fine with that. Really. I can’t wait to be Uncle Hutch.”

Starsky growled. “I don’t love you like a brother, damn it!” He leaned down and kissed Hutch.

Hutch moaned and reached for Starsky. Starsky pulled back though. “I love ya, Hutch. I need some time to figure out what do to about Lucy.”

“I know. Now, how about you get off me and we bang on the door until Huggy lets us out.”

“Okay.”

****

Starsky went over to Lucy’s apartment as soon as he was out of the storage room. Technically, it would be the closet. he thought. He snorted and went in.

“Lucy!” he called.

“Back here David!”

Starsky found her in the bedroom. “I need to talk to you.”

She hugged him and said, “I thought you were at the bachelor party.”

“Well, I left. This is important.”

“Okay.” Lucy sat on the bed and he sat next to her.

“Hutch just told me he loved me.”

“That’s not new. He always says that.”

“I know, but it’s different this time. He loves me like a lover. And…”

Starsky never got to finish. Lucy started yelling. “WHAT? That’s so gross. How could even be friends with a pervert like that? Oh my god. He talked to my nephews at the rehearsal. What if he touched them? He certainly can’t be your best man anymore David. I never wanted him to be anyways. Larry will be more than happy to step in. I don’t even want that freak at the wedding, do you hear me David?”

“Yeah. I hear you. And I don’t like it. I love Hutch and I’m gonna be with him. Even if I didn’t want to sleep with Hutch, I still would haven’t have married you. No one talks about my best friend like that,” Starsky growled at her. “Ma and Nicky didn’t think this was a good idea, but they wouldn’t tell me why. I’m glad I found out on my own what a bitch you are.”

“Fine! You fucking faggot! Go and be with your little wife! I hope the two of burn in hell! And I’m telling everyone what you two fags get up to!” she yelled as he marched out the door.

“At least come up with some better insults first!” he yelled back. “Originality is key!”

****

When it all came out, no one who knew the two men were really surprised. Mrs. Starsky was much happier with Hutch as a son-in-law than Lucy as a daughter-in-law.

“What about those grandkids you always wanted to have?” Starsky asked his mother.

“Nicky can have some. You and Ken can always adopt as well.”

Hutch looked thoughtful. Starsky sighed. He just knew kids were coming.

All of their friends called and wished them good luck. And the ones that didn’t call weren’t good friends anyways.

“Huggy, thanks for locking us up,” said Hutch one day when they were at the Pit.

“Yeah well, if I didn’t get you together, you would have been locked up somewhere else.”

“Yeah, most likely,” Starsky replied. He leaned over and kissed Hutch.

Hutch smiled into the kiss.

THE END