In moments such as these, when the world was half-broken into the midnight sky-blue lace cloak of slumber, and pain was simply a faded memory like old newspaper print, the entirety of everything was undeniably perfect. The evening was not a lifestyle as it was on weekends in the bustle of the city. Instead, upon this sunset, most were spending the night inside- some at their desks, some in their homes alone or with the ones they loved, and a very select few in dark alleyways.
Residual rainwater from earlier in the day dripped down the sides of the gutters, clogged from leaves and muck and unlikely to be cleaned until the half-dead residents of the building called their landlord to do something about it before winter snowfalls began. Bricks lined the alleyway, some burnt from time in being created, and the other side perfectly uniform due to the building being one of the new ones in a city where novelty overtook the need for authenticity. In any case, the dumpsters provided a small, dark space where less than moral encounters could occur. Though in all honesty, anyone that found themselves in such a place on purpose could be less than concerned with such things as morals.
There, in a dark, wet alley, where footsteps squelched and the air stank with stagnancy, was where Alexander Hamilton stood, in the shadow of the green metal dumpster as he awaited the words he so desired to hear from his partner on anything but romance. Next to him was a man whose heart was so dark it made his tall shadow seem like the first glint of sunlight when one opens their eyes in the morning. With smoke billowing around them like beaded curtains, the taller man leaned over Hamilton and trailed his fingertips along his forearm. The sudden touch on skin that was typically left untouched left a strange, yet not unwelcome, ripple down through his mind. Turning, Alexander felt the taller man step forward and hold him gently by the arm as he leaned low enough to speak quietly and be heard by the ears his words were meant for.
“Let’s kill tonight,” Thomas whispered, each syllable as sharp as the blade of the knives hidden in the lining of his waistcoat. His eyes were narrowed in adamancy, making the other man well aware that answering anything but in the affirmative would surely end in his demise.
Luckily, Alexander could never say no to Thomas Jefferson.
Turning around with a pivot of his feet, the leather squeaking against the rough gravel, he gazed up at Thomas intently. “And pray tell, how would we get away with any of this?” Alexander inquired playfully, the teasing in his tone only evident to those that had heard such words before. “Murder is a crime, you know- premeditated murder, especially.”
“Has that ever stopped you before?” Thomas asked, cocking an eyebrow in a mocking front of confounding curiosity. Reaching forward, he pulled Alexander close by the waist, his grip so tight it almost death-like, and his eyes even more deadly in their gaze. He could almost sense the flow of electricity that was sent down the shorter man’s spine from the edges of Thomas’s touch, and he would be lying if he claimed not to have grinned at such knowledge. “Have you ever seen their last look of shock and not been utterly delighted at such a lovely sight? Never reveled in the echoes of a final scream shrieking through the cold, biting air of an empty city and half past midnight? Do you claim that the world has never fit into perfect pieces as the last little droplets of crimson fall to the ground, dripping from their perfectly torn skin?”
Alexander moaned softly at the mental image of such a sight, such blood strewn on the ground with gore, and lighting that pulsed inside himself as he cut ever so perfectly into their skin- pale, dark, tan… It doesn’t matter the shade, as long as it finds itself clouded with that shade of red that could never be replicated. Not in the roses of the gardens, nor in the high noon sky of smog-filled air, nor in his cheeks when Thomas pressed their bodies together as he did so perfectly. Their breath in the cold air puffed out like pale cotton balls, although the words spoken would not be soft ones. At least, they would not sound such a way if one did not know that this was a conversation they’d replicated many a time.
“I wish to have no part in these ‘festivities’- which is a kind way of putting what you wish to spend your night doing,” Alexander spat, lower lip caught in a slight pout as he looked up at the taller man through his long eyelashes. “And if you wish to not be reported to the local authorities and locked away for a very long time, I suggest that you let me go, you foul excuse for a man.”
“Foul excuse for a man?” Thomas repeated, pulling Alexander even closer, their skin almost touching if not for the thick coats they wore in contrasting colors. “Now now, my Alexander, that is no way to speak to me. After all, you seem to have forgotten that I am more than well aware of the ‘festivities’ you have taken place in. I have even witnessed them; while they lack in finesse, they are certainly a lovely scene to set one’s gaze upon, and I would truly hate for an artist such as yourself to be lost to the powers of publications of the Times. Is that what you wish to happen, puppet?”
“Well, if you call me by that name one more time, I think you’ll be able to experience my abilities firsthand,” Alexander countered, halfheartedly making an attempt to free himself from Thomas’s grip and failing miserably. He sighed softly in defeat and gave in to the embrace of the dark man before him- not like he was actually desiring to be free, anyway. “But I haven’t forgotten the leverage you have over me, although you must have forgotten that you couldn’t inform the police of my whereabouts without revealing yourself as well.”
“See? This is why I stay,” Thomas murmured, leaning into Alexander and pressing a soft, somehow threatening, kiss to the crook of his neck. “Could never trust someone with my hobby unless they were as absolutely brilliant as you are. Now come; it’s already time for us to get back to work. Our smoke break is nearly over.”
“Smoke break my ass,” Alexander spat, taking in a deep breath as Thomas let go of his waist- restricted airflow was good enough for most people, but for someone as small as Alexander? It was nearly torturous. “Might as well just say that we’re fucking out here- would give the office something to talk about for once. We wouldn’t need to sneak around anymore.”
“Yeah, right,” Thomas replied, righting his jacket and smoothing out the newly formed creases in his pants. “Then we’d have to act like a real fucking couple- and you’d be too cramped hiding under my desk when you gave me head, anyway; it’d never work.”
Alexander felt a shiver travel down his spine at the very thought spun by the threads of Thomas’s words. Biting his lip to contain a soft not-quite moan, he nodded solemnly, turning around and buttoning back up the last few buttons of his shirt that had come loose from his and Thomas’s fervent, hushed planning. “We wouldn’t have to be a real couple- just act real enough that if suspicion arose about us, it’d be easily shrugged off. We couldn’t keep up a life of… This, if we were committed to a long-term partner.”
“Yeah, that’d work, if you weren’t already in a relationship,” Thomas pointed out, crossing his arms and leaning against the semi-damp brick wall beside him as he waited for Alexander to finish up. “Or have you just up and forgotten about dear Gilbert and his Johnny boy?”
“Our John- not Johnny boy,” Alexander corrected, turning back around to face Thomas once his jacket had been set to rights. “Why do you always insist that he’s only Lafayette’s?”
“Because John doesn’t love you-”
“Of course John loves me!” Alexander cut him off sharply, eyes narrowed in the low flame of fury that had been sparked in his heart. “Why wouldn’t John love me? We’re in a poly with Laf where all of us are sexually and romantically involved with each other! We’re equals in the relationship, and John and Lafayette know that if they wanted something else out of our relationship, they could just tell me, and I’d be okay with it because I love them and they love me.”
“They love you?” Thomas asked, the mocking tone from earlier having found its way back into his voice. “Well, I’m sure they’d absolutely still love you if they knew exactly who you are. Exactly what you are.”
“You wouldn’t fucking dare,” Alexander growled, leaning forward in a feeble attempt to seem threatening to the other man as if Thomas knew of but had not assisted in his murderous tendencies. “You know that if this got out, we’d both be ruined- hell, we’d probably share a jail cell before they put us into maximum security. Face it, Jefferson. If either of us tells anyone, and I mean anyone at all, we are going to spend our last day in the fucking electric chair. So do me a favor and shut your bitch ass mouth with those threats. The only thing you’ll get from those is overheard.”
Thomas scoffed at the idea, leaning forward and tightly grasping Alexander’s wrist before the shorter man could leave up the stairwell and retreat back to his office, where papers and pens lay strewn on the desk and floor haphazardly. His grip was tight enough to whiten the skin where he gripped Alexander and pulled him back toward the brick wall.
“Then tell me, Hamilton,” Thomas spat, the syllables of Alexander’s last name harsh on his tongue with the sharply spoken tone he took. “Why aren’t you out celebrating your anniversary with them? Isn’t that tonight?”
“John’s swamped with work tonight, and so am I. Lafayette is fine with rescheduling, and we have a lovely dinner planned for tomorrow night, since tomorrow’s Friday. John will get home about an hour before I do, like always when he has to do extra paperwork, and in that time he will comfort Lafayette because Laffy doesn’t like being put after work. I’ll get home with cupcakes and we’ll have a wonderful night together before we can celebrate properly.”
“Then I don’t think your texts make sense,” Thomas pointed out, a sick sort of amusement filling his dark, glimmering eyes as he stood in the pale light of the cloudy autumn sky. “I ate dinner with you in Washington’s office, then we went out on our ‘smoke break’. In all that time, Lafayette or John never called or even texted you to wish you a happy anniversary?”
Alexander’s eyes widened at the sudden realization, pulling his phone out of his back pocket and felt his heart sink just the slightest bit at his call history. No missed calls from John or Lafayette in the past week. Checking his texts as well, his heart sank even further down in his chest- the last text he’d gotten from John was one reminding him to get milk yesterday, and his last one from Lafayette was from earlier this morning when being asked about if he’d remembered to bring his lunch.
Nothing at all even resembled a word about their anniversary.
“That’s none of your business,” Alexander spat, tucking his phone back into his pocket with little caution or care as to if it fell to the ground or not. “And you shouldn’t even be concerned with things like this- we’re partners, not boyfriends.”
Despite his words, Alexander’s mind flashed back to earlier that morning- the sunlight streaming through the open windows as city air flowed in. John’s curls caught the light and spun them into strands of gold like the rings on each of their left hands. Lafayette’s mouth had been half-open, small drops of drool spilling out onto the pillow beneath his head. Instead of waking with his husbands, Alexander had risen an hour before their alarm was set to ring, knowing he had far too much work to do. Sure, he would have absolutely loved to stay in bed, but on a morning like this one? When Lafayette was tangled in with John, and Alexander had been resigned to the corner of the bed?
He didn’t particularly need to stay in bed, those mornings.
That was not to say that he had been inconsiderate toward the needs of his partners, however. In fact, he had acted quite the opposite. He’d cut up two apples, the ones John loved so much, and put them in a bowl on the table, even going so far as to leave a small note addressed to both of them that said ‘happy anniversary’ in glittery gel pens. He hadn’t been able to say it in person, so a note would be a fair replacement.
He hadn’t received any sort of replacement of his own. Not one.
“Fuck you, Jefferson,” Alexander cursed as if the occurrences of the day were the other man’s fault. “Fuck you.”
And with a few steps away and up the stairs, Alexander left Thomas in the alley, with only the stale city air and an empty grasp on the cigarette smoke that hadn’t been purposefully inhaled.