Jay and Emma Bergman were a very lucky couple.
Not only were they being offered an all expenses paid Christmas vacation to anywhere in the world, but their house would be fully taken care of while they were gone. The two men who brought them the cash were extremely convincing. It was only a matter of minutes between when they received the offer and when they basically ran from their house to enjoy their vacation.
The fact the offer came at the hands (and guns) of two of the greatest criminals in the world had nothing to do with it.
“Where do ya suppose they’ll go for their vacation?” Junkrat asked, thumbing through the Christmas cards in the little wooden stand by the fireplace.
Roadhog shrugged as he checked the reinforcements on the window of the Bergman’s cozy bungalow.
“Someplace warm I’d expect,” Junkrat continued, “Isn’t it supposed to be summer at Christmas?”
“Not in the north.” Roadhog replied.
“Well that’s a fine how do you do!” Junkrat leapt to his feet. As he did so, his peg leg poked a hole in the Bergman’s leather couch. “They’re off enjoying their holiday at the beach, and we’re stuck here holed up in some freezing cabin like a couple of second-rate fugitives!”
Roadhog coughed. “We are fugitives.” He left the window to go rummage around in the kitchen. Junkrat muttered to himself as he got bored with the cards, replaced the box by the fireplace, and started eyeing the pretty wrapped boxes stacked under the Christmas tree. He’d lost himself in thought when he felt a familiar tap on his shoulder.
“Tea, if you’re cold,” Roadhog offered, holding out a mug and saucer.
“Ta.” Junkrat replied, taking the mug and blowing on its contents to cool them. “Ya know what would really warm me up though? A nice hot bath.”
“On it, boss.” Roadhog replied, lumbering off to the bathroom. Junkrat cackled to himself as he heard the faucet turn and the water run into the tub. It tickled him to no end to have Roadhog wait on him, and to the big guy’s credit he didn’t seem to mind. He even seemed to enjoy following Junkrat’s orders, no matter how lazy or spoiled he might seem. Junkrat lost himself in thought again, trying not to think of all the things he’d like to ask Hog to do, and before he realized it, his tea was gone and the shadow of his companion had fallen over him. He opened his eyes and batted his lashes up at Roadhog.
“Carry me?” He asked flirtatiously.
Roadhog chuckled. “Sure.”
It was like this between them. Flirtatious, seductive advances from Junkrat, and a nonchalant acceptance from Roadhog. Trying to get the big guy to respond was like trying to make love to a brick wall. Junkrat gritted his teeth as Roadhog carried him, bridal style, into the bathroom. It was frustrating to no end, the way he tried to elicit Roadhog’s intimate attentions, and the way his each and every other request was met and honored. Roadhog would drive straight into an oncoming squad of police cars if Junkrat told him to, and in fact he had. On several occasions. But intimacy? Junkrat wondered if maybe his friend just wasn’t into sex. But the grunting and shuffling he’d overheard at night hinted otherwise.
When they reached the bathroom, he was shocked from his reverie when Roadhog made to drop him into the tub. He screeched like a banshee and flung his arms around Roadhog’s neck, kicking helplessly to avoid the water. Roadhog burst into laughter and patted his belly with one hand, holding tight to Junkrat with the other.
“That ain’t - “ Junkrat panted, “That ain’t funny mate.”
“Seems pretty funny.”
“Well it ain’t!”
Now safely standing on the floor, Junkrat braced himself against Roadhog’s strong shoulder as he unbuckled his prosthetics. Roadhog took them carefully and lay them on the counter, safely out of the water’s way. Junkrat pulled off his shorts and allowed Roadhog to help him over the ledge into the bath. The water was silky and warm, clouded over with foamy bubbles, and it smelled of peppermint.
“You dress this up for me, mate?”
Roadhog grunted in reply as Junkrat eased himself down into the water. It felt like heaven. He lounged back and sighed deeply, closing his eyes and relishing in the peace of their hideout.
Roadhog was starting to clean his prosthetics, something he did every time Junkrat took a bath. And that was another thing he did, something so intimate yet so unsatisfactory to Junkrat’s desires. He looked away and began to soap up his limbs.
“I’d never drop ya.”
Roadhog’s voice was quiet, serious. Junkrat ceased his splashing at looked at his partner. Apart from the steam clouding the mask’s lenses, Roadhog’s face was as expressionless and intelligible as ever. Junkrat wished that, for once, he could know what the big guy was thinking. He cleared his throat awkwardly.
“I know that, mate.”
Roadhog went back to cleaning the prosthetics, and suddenly Junkrat felt starved for his touch. He needed to stop being such a drongo and tell the big guy how he felt, what he really wanted from their partnership.
“Oi!” he started, like so many times before. But, like whenever he tried before, the words seemed to stick in his throat. Roadhog stopped what he was doing and looked at him questioningly.
Junkrat shrugged and giggled a little. “Help wash me hair?”
Jay and Emma Bergman had been planning a delicious Christmas dinner for two. By sheer luck, it seemed, they were both vegetarian, and Roadhog delighted in preparing their stuffing, sweet potatoes, Brussel sprouts, and roasted vegetable pie for his and Junkrat’s Christmas dinner. He couldn’t wait for Junkrat to try some of the vegetables, things they had never had access to in the irradiated outback. He had particular high hopes for the Brussel sprouts, because he would love to add more nutritious vegetables to their diet. After years of travel and adventuring, Junkrat still seemed malnourished, and Roadhog had made it his personal goal to reverse that.
Roadhog wasn’t good with words. He was a man of action. He didn’t quite know what to make of his feelings for his younger companion, and he definitely didn’t know what to say about them. But he could act. Make sure Junkrat was warm, make sure he was fed, make sure he had every little comfort his heart desired that Roadhog was able to provide. Roadhog was happy to serve him in this way, and he hoped the actions spoke louder than the words he could never say.
Especially because he was certain that Junkrat could never return his feelings.
Junkrat was stupid.
He needed to tell Roadhog how he felt, consequences be damned. Freshly wrapped in warm clothes, hair still damp from the bath, Junkrat stood in the middle of Jay and Emma Bergman’s living room, hands balled into fists as he gnashed his teeth together.
“Dinner,” Roadhog rumbled from the kitchen, emerging with a hot pie plate. He set it in the center of the dining table, then stood at attention when he noticed Junkrat’s tense posture.
Junkrat took a deep breath. “I gotta tell you something,” he said.
Roadhog nodded, silent but all ears.
“I - “ Junkrat stammered, “This ain’t easy for me.” He took a deep breath in, and the breath was ragged and panicked on its way out. His non-mechanical fingers were trembling; he clenched his left hand into a fist and covered it with his steadier right. Roadhog was waiting, and damnit if he knew how but the look on his companion’s mask’s face was one of concern.
“I think I - “ he started, then gulped. Again. “I fucking love you, mate.”
The two stared at each other in silence. Junkrat’s mechanical fingers played nervously along the knuckles of his balled fist.
“Fuckin’ say something!”
After too long of a moment, Roadhog coughed. Then he turned away, his head turned down in shame, or - embarrassment, probably. When he finally spoke, he sounded rough and tired.
“I’m… too old for you.”
Junkrat nodded, his heart fluttering in his chest, trying to tamper down the heat that was rising in his cheeks.
“Yeah, yeah, I get cha, mate. Well, that’s that then.”
He leapt to his feet, making quickly for the door to escape. He tried to stop babbling, but his mouth was like a faucet that he couldn’t turn off, saying all sorts of things he’d never thought to say. Stupid Junkrat.
“Probably for the best anyway, never much of a companion, I shouldn’t a said nothing, if that’s how ya like it mate, I’ll quit bothering ya now…” And with that, he stepped out into the snow, slamming the door behind him.
Roadhog was stupid.
He slammed his fist into the tile counter top, wincing as it cracked beneath his strength. Jay and Emma would have to get that fixed. Their dinner was getting cold on the table while Junkrat was out in the snow, and Roadhog was just letting it happen.
Not acceptable, he thought, mentally shaking himself. A man of action who stands there like a big idiot when actually faced with a choice. A man of action who lets the only person who matters to him run out into the winter night without even trying to stop him.
And even though Roadhog didn’t deserve… wasn’t worthy of Junkrat’s affections… he still wanted them. Wanted approval, wanted attention, wanted… to be wanted.
Looking out the window, he noticed that the snowfall had picked up. A man of action, he grabbed their coats and marched out the door.
They found each other in the snow.
Roadhog crouched, hands on his knees, breathing heavily.
“Hog, mate, what’re you doing out here?” Junkrat sounded concerned, his hands traveling all over Roadhog’s chest and shoulders. His face was red and crumpled, wet from tears or the snow perhaps. “Don’t let me worry you anymore, I ain’t worth it!”
“Rat,” Roadhog breathed, bringing his hands to Junkrat’s face. “I fucked up. I -“ He took a deep breath, then moved his hands down to grasp Junkrat’s in his own.
“I ain’t good with words,” he began, “You know that. But… I fucking… love you too.”
Junkrat’s chin trembled. “Ya mean it?”
Junkrat seized either side of Roadhog’s mask in his hands. He brought their foreheads together, pressing against the cool leather of the mask.
“I don’t give a damn how old you are,” he whispered, “That ain’t never mattered to me. You protect me, you take care of me, you’re everything I need. You’re mine, mate.”
Roadhog hummed contentedly, wrapping his arms around Junkrat and holding him close. He sighed.
“Let’s go home.”
Jay and Emma Bergman returned the next week to find their house empty, their Christmas dinner gone, and their bed extremely unkept.