He stops paying attention.
Olivia actually has to snap to bring him back to the matter at hand all because Rafael had shook his and Sonny’s heart fell to his stomach at the pang he knows means “soulmates”.
Rafael’s hand is still in his as he apologizes to Benson, as the ache spreads up his arm, across his torso. She squints, but nods and continues the introductions.
When Sonny lets go of Rafael’s hand, he watches Sonny with a wry and amused expression. Like he knows why Sonny’s staring.
He does though. He does and Sonny has to remind himself that Rafael is his soulmate and that he feels the same ache, pooling at his ankles.
When Rafael’s shoulder brushes his moments later, Sonny doesn’t- Sonny can't even try to focus.
Rafael’s hand is on Sonny’s back and Sonny forgets to breathe.
It’s like Rafael knows that the only way to distract him is to place his hands on his body below the fabric of his shirt.
Rafael is what Sonny looks for when there’s a difficult case. Sometimes Sonny calls him, asks for a hand so he’ll forget the stare of a woman that can’t form her name.
Every time Rafael puts a hand to his back, Sonny’s grateful for the way the case falls to the back of his mind. How his head throbs and his memory slips.
Comfort’s never felt so painful.
Rafael’s eyes haven’t left him once and the way he’s supporting Sonny with a hand on his hip promises that there’s love somewhere beneath the surface. Bruises that match the raw of Sonny’s skin rest just below where Rafael keeps his hand and sometimes Sonny goes to pull away but he knows he’ll regret it.
The way Sonny looks right now, skin like chalk and eyes like fire, that’s what Rafael likes to picture.
When Sonny kisses Rafael, Rafael’s breath is warm, and Sonny's tongue thaws.
Sonny is sitting on Rafael's thighs, hands knit to his hair, and biting at Rafael's lower lip. The man below him licks his chin and rolls his hips as their breath laps the air.
They shouldn’t be doing this, not at the office. Anyone could walk in with Carmen’s OK and find them with lips pressed together and no explanation other than the obvious. They could be transferred. They could be suspended. They could easily be separated and that's-
Rafael shifts his weight as he sucks on the blush of Sonny’s skin.
He’s frantic, and Rafael’s never frantic but right now he is, and Sonny has to slow him with the drag of his hand and the pull of his kiss. Rafael's tongue licks at the seam of his lips, once, twice, before tasting the rum, sweet and rich, coating the brim.
It’s rum Rafael had poured into a glass as Sonny’s fingers ran up and down his back.
Rafael would have dragged him to the cabinet, let the rum soak his skin as to lick it from his chest, but Sonny looked too focused on Rafael’s mouth to change positions.
It’s Sonny who interrupts Rafael from his thoughts. He takes hold of Rafael’s waist, moans as his lips swell and sore from the tug of Rafael’s kiss. Compared to him, his moans are soft. Like there’s no ache as Sonny licks his lips and nips his tongue.
Sonny begins to think the touch isn’t worth the ache as Rafael’s hands climb up his back.
It’s not all hard though.
Rafael’s hands, despite his rough tongue and sharp edges, are soft. Sonny has touched Rafael’s hands before, that first day they met and Sonny’s heart fell to his stomach, and yet each time his fingers run over Rafael’s, he aches more than before.
Rafael’s fingers, whether still in his or twitching against the heel of his palm, leave him struck and raw, and his heart ticks at the thought.
With the way his touch comforts Sonny, Sonny’s sure Rafael is his soulmate.
When Rafael’s palm sits in his, he feels exposed, falling to pieces and thinking maybe he can deal with the pain.
He’s not sure how it started, but Sonny’s body is pressed to Rafael’s and he’s not sure he cares.
They’re not even past the door yet before Rafael’s hands meet Sonny’s shoulders and he’s dragging him to his chest, inches apart.
Sonny knows how he holds Rafael. He holds Rafael as he holds his family; at arm’s length.
Rafael, though, always stays as close as he can.
He clings to Sonny, hands gripping at his waist where the skin is pink and red and raw, as if he lives off the ache of Sonny’s hips.
It’s almost too much to handle and when Rafael pushes Sonny against the bed, strips him, Sonny moans, sure Rafael knows he’s falling apart.
But that’s Rafael's intent, isn’t it? To touch him. Why else would Sonny’s body be pressed flush against his if not to spread the ache to his thighs?
He’s never stood a chance, has he?
They don’t last forever. He hadn’t thought they would, though Sonny had dreamed of the possibility.
He still remembers the day early in May when Rafael, thighs pressed to his hips, said the ache had dulled, but that this, this would be forever if that’s what Sonny wanted.
Sonny swore to him that an ache doesn’t define a relationship. That even if they felt nothing they’d still have always because a relationship is so much more than physical.
Sonny had said “always” and he’d almost believed it.
Sonny knows it’s only “always” for one.
Sonny never regretted the ache of Rafael’s touch, never thought he’d have to, until now.
Until the day Rafael said he did.
Even gone Rafael is able to cause him pain, except now there’s nothing to balance out the ache.
Maybe he should have told Rafael that there's not only pain in being together, but pain in being alone.