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Is This The Real Life? Or Is This Just Fantasy?

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Eric wasn't sure how he got roped into this but somehow the others had convinced him to join their stupid game of ultimate truths. The rules were basically like truth or dare but this game is truths only and you can't get out of answering it. Labib, Mikaela, Brandon, Tom, and himself were now sitting in a circle in Eric's floor. Brandon went first asking Mikaela if she had ever done anything illegal, she answered no instantly making it her turn to ask someone. Watching her eyes study everyone closely her eyes stopped on him looking like a lightbulb went off in her head. She smiles at him and he trys his best to smile back , "Eric, do you like men too?" Blinking he freezes up. I do. He does find certain men's voices attractive and has made out with several other men. There is the crush on Tom too. The silence seems to last forever until finally someone breaks it, "Mikaela he doesn't have to answer that it's not a fair questi-" his brain comes back online and he interrupts " no Tom it's fine I'll answer it. Yes I like men as well as women and anyone I end up liking their gender doesn't matter to me." He meets her eyes and sees she has her mouth hanging open a quick glance at the others confirmed their shock as well. Should I risk a glance at Tom? Oh why not. Glancing at his best friend he noticed he's the only one who's mouth is closed but his eyes are wide and he's frozen in place.

He looks back at Mikaela and she seems to realize the mistake she's made before he even does. "Uh Brandon, Labib. Let's go I'm getting hungry we'll go buy a bunch of junk." She's already grabbing her jacket and bag the boys following her to the door. "Be back in 2 hours!" Brandon yells closing the door behind them. Stunned Eric looks back at Tom and notices he looks hurt, his face scrunched up in a mix of confusion and sadness. Oh no what have I done. "Tom?" It's a risk but he has to know what the older man is thinking. This seems to snap him out of his thoughts and he looks up at Eric his brown eyes locking hazel into place causing Eric's stomach to do summersaults. Tom opens his mouth then closes it again a few times looking for the right words until finally speaking, "Why didn't you tell me. I. I thought we're best friends, that we told each other everything...." It's the most broken he's ever heard the man and it hurts he caused this. "We are Tom it's just...I mean this is..." He's choking on how to say the words because he's not even sure why he's never told Tom before, well besides the having a crush on him thing. Tom's eyes are searching his own again and he's suddenly nervous about what he's looking for there but he doesn't look away because wow. I love his eyes. God they're beautiful, I love how the color catches the light making them look like melted chocolate. God I want to kiss him so bad just to get rid of these butterflies. But he'll run away from me if I do because he's not into guys and it'll disgust Tom and oh god I can't have that because I need his friendship. But god he's beautiful and oh my God I'm in love with Tom. "Eric? Are you okay? I've been trying to talk to you for nearly five minutes and you're just staring at my eyes." Snapping out of it he looks away from Tom flushing like a tomato embarrassed he'd been caught staring. "Yeah I'm fine. I um just uh...." He's again at a lose for words because he's always had what he considered a crush on Tom but now that he realizes it's more than a simple crush on his best friend it's suddenly become hard to speak. Sighing in frustration he pulls at his hair a little bring his knees up closer to his body. Who knew this would cause him to have a panic attack, he'd just come out to them all about liking guys and whoever he likes and realized he also loves Tom and he suddenly can't breathe and he's shaking slightly. He's going to hate me forever, how can I tell him anything without telling him the whole truth? Oh fuck I'm screwed! 

Eric is aware of someone's hand on his shoulder and he can see someone kneeling in front of him through the tears that have started falling but he can't stop. If he finds out I have a crush on him, wait no that I'm in love with him, he'll hate me forever. And oh god. Suddenly the person slaps him hard on the cheek, "OW! What the fuck was that for?!" He screams at the person who he now realizes is Tom. He looks relieved but also guilty, "sorry you were crying and shaking and I just didn't know what to do and you weren't answering me and I was so scared and I just...." He breaks off looking at the floor ashamed. Sighing again he pulls Tom into a hug, "I'm sorry. It's fine thanks for snapping me out if it. I mean it thank you." Tom just nods into the hug but he doesn't make to move away, instead he hugs Eric back making the younger man's breath hitch. Everything is fine you've hugged before. It's fine. They've hugged before so Eric would survive. But then something that never happened before happens, Tom burries his head in Eric's chest and he momentarily forgets how to breathe. Oh my God. "I'm sorry for making you freak out Eric and I guess I understand partially why you didn't say anything before seeing as no one else really knew either. But I still wish you had said something to me." Tom's voice is muffled by Eric's chest but he heard him clearly. Fuck it I'm telling him everything.

Pulling back to look at Tom he takes a breath to calm himself down and mentally prepare himself for this. "I think that was part of it yes but the whole truth is something else entirely. But if you want to hear it I think I'm ready to talk about it" he says finally Tom nods okay and move to the couch. Sitting next to him he takes deep breaths in again "so you should know that I realized I liked guys too only a year before we met. I realized it a few days after we met that I had a crush on you and I've even had a few secret boyfriends since we met as well in case you were wondering." He pauses risking a look at his best friend nothing, he looks a little shocked but clam. Okay well that makes this next part easier. "I didn't tell you this because I didn't know how to explain I suddenly realized that I like guys without lying and I hate lying to you. So it wasn't an option. The truth is I've had a crush on you since we met and I uh always thought it was just that a crush. The reason I went into panic wasn't because I just told everyone my biggest and kind of only secret. It's because I realized something else even bigger I hadn't realized about myself before." Stopping again he looks away from Tom and to the floor. Come on Eric you can do this just fucking say it! "well I realized that I'm in love with you Tom. Which now that I think about it makes so much more sense than me just having a crush on you. It explains why I'm so comfortable with you, why everytime I'm without you I can't think about anything but you. How my stomach does summersaults whenever you smile at me or touch me. And I'm sorry if this ruins our friendship because I really don't want my unrequited feelings to ruin one of the best things that's ever happened to me. So if it does I'm extremely sorry and I mean that with everything in me." He takes in a deep breath because he said it all really fast and needs air. Glancing at the older man he notices that he's smiling a lot.

Opening his mouth he closes it again not sure what he should say, "It absolutely does not ruin our relationship becau-" Tom starts but is cut off as Brandon slams the door open. "We're back and it's time to get this party started!" He yells throwing a bag of junk food on the coffee table. Eric tries to smile but it comes out as more of a grimace. Damnit! Why couldn't they have waited another hour? Looking at Labib and Mikaela as they walked in he crosses his arms over his chest and slightly pouts. "who pissed in your Cheerios dude?" Labib asks handing Tom a bag of chips. Mikaela however seems to get what's happening and grabs them both by their jacket hoods and pulls them out the door. "It's getting late you two let's just go home and uh we'll do this another night. Bye Eric call me and tell me everything!" She shuts the door right as Brandon crys "but my chips!" Tom busts out laughing so hard he can't sit up anymore and ends up laying mostly on Eric for support and when he stops and looks up their mouths are inches away. Holy shit! Are we about to kiss? "What were you going to say to me? Before our wonderful friends interrupted?" Goddamn it! Why did I talk?! Tom smiles a little and then puts his palms flat on the younger man's chest and pushes up which makes Eric overly aware he is now straddling him on the couch and he's not entirely sure how they ended up in this position. The man in his lap seems to have more fun than he should wiggling around trying to get comfortable in his lap. "Well I was going to say. It absolutely does not ruin our relationship because I love you too Eric Beckerman. Why more than I ever expected to, well at least in the non friend kind of way." Before he's able to fully process his words Tom's lips are on his. HOLY WHAT?! He starts moving his lips back and soon they're making out on his couch. He slides his hands down grabbing the older man's ass and grinding up into him "Eric." He moans into the kiss. He's about to grid up again when "Eric!" It's louder and more annoyed than the person in front of him is. Wiat where did Tom go?!  Suddenly the man had vanished into thin air. "Eric come on!" He's shaking and suddenly everything has white light seeping around through the edges. What's happening?

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Screaming as he wakes up the first thing Eric realizes is everything was a dream, he didn't tell them all, he didn't tell Tom and he didn't make out with him. All of it was some werid fantasy. The second thing was he was painfully hard in his boxers, and the third thing was Tom was standing next to him fully clothed and staring at Eric's boxer clad erection now that the covers had been yanked away. The thing is Eric is at least 99.9% positive that Tom wasn't here when he fell asleep last night so how the fuck did he get in? "Tom?!?" He screams it while grabbing a pillow to cover himself. "Eric!?!" The man screams back mocking him. Snatching the covers back he better covers himself. "What the hell are you doing in my house?" This is honestly more important than figuring out why he just had a slightly sexual dream about the man in front of him he had time to panic about that later. "Uh... We had a sleepover. We played some games and uh you kind of panicked. How can you not remember that?" Shaking his head he kind of remembered it but his dream and reality kind of mixed together a little bit apparently. Sighing he pulls the covers tighter around him feeling slightly vulnerable and guilty from the dream. "Oh I remember it's just.... nevermind." He saw the erection you can't say you thought it was a dream. Jesus this is bad. Tom clears his throat and shifts his weight back and forth on his feet.

The older man goes to say something but closes his mouth again deciding against it. Smiling at him Eric gets up and drops his blanket on his way to his dresser. Pulling out a random pair of jeans that happen to be a darker fabric he also grabs his red and black marble shirt throwing it over his head. Yanking the jeans up over his orange boxers he notices Tom is still standing there just watching him get dressed, "You know normally people watch other people get naked not dressed." He teases his friend causing Tom's cheeks to turn a slight pink and laugh. Walking out into the living room he notices that no one else stayed. Hm just like in my dream. Stomach rumbling he goes to the kitchen and spots grocery bags on the coffee table making his blood run cold. Oh shit. How much of that was a dream and how much of it was real? Tom walks in and notices him staring at the bags on the coffee table. "Eric? you look like you've seen a ghost." Switching his eyes over to the older man he feels like he's going to cry for some reason. I told them didn't I. Then they all left. But I didn't tell Tom how I feel. He still doesn't know. " Tom what exactly did we do last night?" It's a little quiet and his voice shakes more than he'd like it to.

Tom sits on the open chair at the table and sighs, "Eric I really don't know why you don't remember. You're starting to worry me. Are you okay?" He's looking him over possibly for anything out of the ordinary. Sighing and sitting in the chair diagonal from his friend he looks down at the table. "I'm fine I promise Tom it's just... I had a dream that we played ultimate truths with Mikaela, Labib, and Brandon. Mikaela asked me if-" "if you liked men." Holy shit. Nodding and looking at Tom he let's out a breath he wasn't aware he was holding in. "Did I answer it?" Tom nods his head looking deep in thought. "yeah you did. Then you looked at us all and when they left to get food to let us talk you had a panic attack. I couldn't get you to calm down. They came back and you were still panicking so I told them just to go home and I'd stay over to take care of you. Well you eventually stopped panicking and fell asleep on my shoulder so I had to carry you to bed. You're heavy by the way either that or I need to work out more." Laughing at his best friend it makes him feel a little better about what had happened. But he knows Tom is going to do everything he can to get him to talk about it now that he's awake.

Getting up he grabs some eggs out of the refrigerator along with some bacon. Turning around to grab a pan he ends up face to face with the other man who is holding a spatula and a frying pan smiling. Why is that so cute? Fuck I want to kiss him. God what is wrong with me?! Smiling back he takes them and turns back to the stove expecting Tom to go sit again but instead he grabs the bread throwing a few slices of it in the toaster. Grabbing a small bowl and a whisk he cracks four eggs into the bowl whisking in pepper. He is about to go get the milk when Tom's chest presses against his back and his arm reaches around him to hand him the milk. Oh... Eric suddenly can't breathe or think, his heart is in his throat and he feels like his back is on fire in all the places Tom's body is touching. Jesus Christ. Realizing that he's basically just been frozen he shakes his head with a sharp intake of breath causing him the drop the whisk loudly in the bowl and just yank the milk away from Tom. The moment it's away from the other man he thinks it'll be okay and Tom will move away but he thought wrong.

As Eric is pouring the eggs into the pan and stirring them with the spatula the older man decides to rest his chin on his shoulder and watch the process as if their being pressed together happened a lot. It does. But that was before your creepy self had an almost sex dream. Looking down at what he's doing Eric tries to calm himself. It however just makes his shoulders slump suddenly causing Tom's head to slide to the left. His lips brush against the younger man's ear right as he exhales in surprise making his breath ghost over it. Squeezing his eyes shut Eric makes an involuntary sound that if he's being honest was a straight up needy whimper. It doesn't help that to steady himself Tom grabs his hips right where the shirt meets his jeans waist band causing his fingers to land in between the two and brush the bare skin of his hip. Oh I am so screwed. And not in the good way. Breathing becomes a lot harder when, even though he's caught his balance again, Tom doesn't let go of him. The other man doesn't seem to realize what exactly his actions are doing to his best friend and if he does that makes it worse. The faster you cook the faster you  can get away from his touch and breathe. Finished with the eggs he pours them in equal parts onto plates Tom got down and throws the bacon into the pan. It's sizzles and pops making them both jump causing Eric to back into Tom. Again making the man off balance, this time though he just wraps his arms around Eric and laces his fingers on his stomach.

However this backfires and keeps Eric from getting his own blance back. Sensing what was about to happen he let's the spatula go and it falls to the counter. He tries to twist so his side is pressed to Tom's chest so that he doesn't land directly on top of Tom with his weight. They sway for a moment before they trip a bit and fall twords the floor. Tom's back hits first and Eric turns completely and manages to put his hands out at the right time making him stop inches away from landing right on the other man. His heart is beating fast and he's laughing because only they could manage to fall while cooking breakfast. His laughter catches in his throat though when he realizes Tom has his arms still wrapped tightly around him and that their faces are inches away, if anyone were to walk in this would look like something else entirely. His thighs are on either side of Tom's legs and his hands next to his head holding him up a few inches from the man below him who's arms still haven't moved from their position. Risking it he looks right into Tom's eyes and his breath is again taken away from his lungs.

Tom is starting right back, mouth partly opened in a quiet sound of surprise. He's breathing hard and has this look in his eyes Eric knows he'll never be able to explain to anyone. His hair is sticking in random directions even if the younger man isn't entirely sure how that happened. And god if he doesn't look like so damn kissable. What?! No stop it Tom is stright! He's stricktly into chicks! Why are you thinking like this?! Get a grip Eric what the hell! ?! Pulling back and standing up like he's been burned Eric goes back to cooking their breakfast like nothing happened at all. He misses the frown that over takes his best friend's face as he gets up. Taking the almost burnt bacon out and putting it on the plates next to the eggs leaving room for toast he turns the stove off. The toaster sounds, the now golden brown bread pops up and Eric yanks it out throwing it on the plates. He's actually so grateful his parents are gone because if they had walked in on that he'd have too much to explain and not just why he was in the kitchen floor on top of Tom. Opening the fridge he grabs the orange juice then turns to retrieve a glass, "Tom do you want any orange juice?" He looks over to the table where Tom is sitting with his toast ripped in half and he's chewing a small piece whilst pouting. Oh my god could he be any more adorable? Stop it! Bad Eric. Bad. The man's head snaps up at Eric's voice and he squints his eyes in confusion making it clear he hadn't heard the question.

Smiling at the man he then sits his glass on the counter. He turns his body twords him jutting his left hip out to make it dramatic. He holds the container out for Tom to see and uses his other hand to make a sweeping motion in front of it like Vanna White would do on Wheel Of Fortune. "Orange juice. Do you want some?" It's said in time with the hand motion making Tom lose his shit laughing. He nods his head, "yeah. If you don't mind." Turning away to grab another glass he pours two full glasses of orange juice and carries both over to the table sitting them down. Going back to the kitchen to grab his plate he sighs thinking about what had happened only moments ago. I wish now more than that I could read minds, this would be less stressful if I knew what Tom was thinking. Taking a bite of his bacon as he sits down in his chair he can't help but notice Tom looks deep in thought himself. It's insane to think that all this time he's been in love with the man sitting next to him and he always just thought it was a crush. That somehow he never realized that none of his relationships, if that be the secret ones he's had with men to his open ones with women, never made him feel like he feels whenever he's around Tom. But for some reason he's still shocked by the realization that he is in love with him. Maybe it's because he didn't want to admit that he has fallen hopelessly in love with his best friend, God the more he thinks about it the more it sounds like some overly expensive poorly written teen romance novel. The thing he still couldn't figure out was when exactly his crush went from being exactly that, a crush, to being in love.

Now that he's thinking about it he's not entirely sure it was ever just a crush, it's like somewhere deep down he's always known that he's in love with Tom. Breathing in he looks at his plate, has he just repressed it all so he wouldn't ruin anything? That's actually probably the most accurate thing I've thought so far. Taking another bite of bacon he considers talking to Tom about this. It'll be interesting to see what he says, maybe it'll be easier since I already told dream version of him. Then again I'm not entirely sure myself of my complete feelings so maybe I need to wait. Glancing up at the man again he nods his head slightly, yeah waiting is best. Laying his bacon down he picks up a piece of toast and scoops some eggs on it then takes a bite. Had he always been in love with him? Looking at his secret relationship with that guy Max it makes sense to say he has. With Max he didn't really feel anything with him, yes making out was fun, but anything else he just didn't feel anything. Max had also said he loved him and Eric hadn't been able to say it back. Because my heart belonged to Tom already? God it's all so confusing. He sits the toast down almost violently in frustration, he had barely touched his food but he really wasn't hungry and hadn't been to start with really. Tom jumps beside him and drops his bacon when the motion causes his fork to move making a scratching sound against the plate. "You okay Eric?" This only makes him more frustrated and he rolls his eyes. "I really wish you would stop asking me that. I know you're worried about me Tom I do but I just. When I'm ready to talk about it I'll talk about it okay?" The first bit comes out harsh and it makes the older man flinch a little as well as Eric even though he gets softer again twords the end. What's gotten into me? Tom nods and picks his bacon up again, "yeah I get it but I jus-" "Tom I'm serious. I'll tell you. In fact you'll be the first to know when I'm ready to talk. I promise." The man nods again and stays silent this time.

Getting up with his plate in his hand Eric walks into the kitchen and opens the trashcan throwing all but the three bites of food he ate into it. He hates wasting food but he can't eat, to be completely honest he only made food at all because he knew Tom would be hungry. When he gets like this he can't eat anything without getting sick, he blames the nerves. Turning the sink on hot he grabs a sponge putting soap on it, reaching behind him he grabs the things he used to cook off the stove. Scrubbing the frying pan until the egg and grease are gone replaced with bubbles he holds it under the water to rinse. Putting it over onto the dish towel to dry he starts on the spatula, but his mind starts to wonder back to his current issue, Tom Phelan. They're best friends, they've seen each other practically naked before many times. They hug of course but what friends don't, there was that time in Jeannine's vlog that he kissed Tom on the cheek and even though they were on camera he said aw instead of being grossed out so maybe that's something to account for? Sighing and rinsing the spatula sitting it with the pan he picks up a plate. He's positive that as long as they've been friends that Tom would have said something by now if he had any sort of feelings for him, then again up until last night they had all thought he was straight. The only way I'll ever know the way he feels is by asking him. But I don't think I'm ready for that yet. They joke about it so much it's hard to tell if anything has ever been real on Tom's side, not that Eric has ever let it seem real either because that would give too much away.

He jumps dropping the plate in the sink with a clatter and a small shout of shock when Tom comes up behind him wrapping his arms around him, his hands resting on his stomach again and resting his head into the back of his neck. "Sorry if I made you angry Eric. I just, I worry about you. It just- I care about you a lot and I just don't think I could handle if you needed me and I wasn't there? Does that make sense at all?" He's frustrated and Eric can tell by his tone of voice along with the little huffs of air hitting the base of his neck. If you only knew how much I actually do need you. God if you only knew. He smiles despite the bitter taste the words his friend says put in his mouth, "It makes sense Tom, and I know you care. The feeling on this is mutual, and I'm not angry. I'm just trying to figure something out for myself so I need you to be patient with me." Turning around in his friends arms he grabs the towel from the oven handle drying his hands then tossing it to the counter and putting his palms flat on Tom's upper back holding him to his chest. The older man nods a little, "I can do that." It's a whisper and Eric doesn't have anything to say back so he stays quiet. They fall into a comfortable silence just standing there holding each other in his kitchen. Is this something normal friends do? Sighing he can't fight the urge to burry his head into the side of Tom's neck to breathe in his scent. Tom smells like all the things he loves, the smell is distinct but not something one can explain, for Eric he smells like home. Which is amusing to him because his actual home smells nothing like Tom but he thinks that if it did maybe he'd feel more comfortable here and never want to leave.

Nothing can explain how guilty he feels for having an even slightly sexual dream about his best friend. It's not fair to Tom to dream about that when the other man is completely stright and has no interest in men or Eric whatsoever. God I'm an asshole even if he doesn't know it. He shouldn't be apologizing to me I should be apologizing to him! But how can I say sorry without telling him... He's about to just apologize for last night when his entire world flips upside down with two words "I'm bisexual." They're quite and mumbled into his neck. Eric's heart stops because oh fuck this changes everything.

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Pulling back to look at Tom's face he takes in a sharp breath. He's Bisexual. He likes men too. Oh my God. There's the tiniest bit of hope that we could be a thing. Oh fuck. Trying his best to calm himself he pulls the older man back in because he needs something to hold on to, it's all too real too quick. Eric knows it probably seems bad that he's hopeful that this can mean something for them because him being out as bisexual doesn't mean he's willing to throw himself at the younger man for a relationship. The thing is he's had these feelings for so long that even if he didn't realize it until last night part of him always knew that Tom Phelan was it for him. That even if friendship was all they would have it was okay with him because he was fine with being single forever. Just the realization that this was all he had wanted was to be with Tom as anything the other man allowed was enough to take a huge weight off his shoulders. Essentially he had settled for friendship because when they met it was apparent to him that the older man was completely stright. But now he's not. Now there's that tiny bit of hope. Am I wrong to hope? Is it wrong that I want that tiny shard of hope to be more than a tiny shard? There's an intake of breath from the man in his arms and he realizes he's not said anything yet. He's been too busy internally panicking that he didn't even think about how hard this must have been for Tom to say. I'm a shit friend Jesus. "Tom I..." He's not sure what to say. I'm so glad he told me but it changes so much on my end of things. The older man pushes away then turns to face the stove taking in a deep breath. "Really? Jesus Tom why did you talk. Fuck." The man in front of him says yanking his hair clearly angry with himself for saying it.

This makes Eric worry even more about what he should say but he has to calm Tom down. His friend needs him so he has to pull his shit together and be there. "Tom calm down, it's fine. I'm happy you told me. Really I am, it's just. This is a lot for me to take in I'm sorry if it seemed like I didn-" the other man whirls around on him and throws himself into Eric's arms letting out a choked sound that the younger man identifies as a sob. Wrapping his arms tightly around the man he let's a few tears of his own out but reminds himself he has to keep it together, for Tom's sake. You can do this. Just act like your own feelings don't exist. "Tom it's okay. I... Please don't cry. Just please don't I can't handle seeing you cry." His voice cracks with emotion. Tom sniffles a bit and takes a shakey breath, "I know. I, I'm sorry I just. I was worried you were angry or I don't know that you hated me. You were quiet and I realized it was stupid to think you would ever stop being my best friend because of something like this and I just got so pissed at myself. There were too many emotions at once I. Sorry." His arms tighten around him more and he realizes that they're pressed chest to chest, arms tightly holding each other with their faces burried in the others neck. Eric was very aware how intimate this moment is for both of them even as extremely close friends who touch each other any chance they get to without making it werid. Finally tired of fighting his instinct to kiss Tom's cheek he turns his head left to press his lips there not really even thinking about how the motive could come across as. This is Tom, he isn't everyone else. His mind doesn't automatically go to the things other people's minds do. What he wasn't expecting to happen is for Tom to turn at the same time making their lips touch for the briefest of moments. He pulls back immediately as does the older man, Tom looks shocked but not disgusted or angry. Eric however busts out laughing gripping onto Tom's forearms to keep himself up right. Oh my God, that was not my plan. Taking a moment to compose himself he finally looks at the man in front of him the panic and worry hit. Did I just fuck everything up? Oh god I did didn't I?

Blinking Tom leans against the stove, well he more or less slumps back against it. If the stove hadn't been there Eric thinks the man would have fallen into the floor. "Eric do you uh.." The older man can't form the sentence but Eric is one hundred percent sure he knows what the question is. If I answer this it will change everything. Our friendship is worth fighting for and I always will, I would hate to be the one that tears it apart... Taking in a deep breath he looks his best friend right in the eyes, the man looks so nervous, afraid, and so many different things at once. "Yeah, I do. God Tom I really do, always have." His voice comes out more steady then he expected it to, he feels like he's drowning without air. Tom suddenly reaches forward and grabs handfuls of his shirt then he's pulling him forward. Using the older man's hips to steady himself Eric leans his head back, "wait. Are you sure. We don't even know what this is. What it means for us. I..." Stopping he looks at Tom's eyes and he let's his heart melt but keeps his urge to just kiss him burried down. The other man nods and pushes up enough to get free of Eric's grip and walk into the living room sitting on the couch. Following him Eric sits close but far enough that it's comforting but not weird. Sighing he prepares himself for the real confession to happen, You can do this. It's okay, he knows and he's still not running away. "So I'll go first?" Tom says it in almost a whisper as if the moment is to fragile to ruin with speaking. Nodding in agreement Eric decides maybe if the older man goes first he can better think about what he wants to say.

He nods and takes a deep breath again, "okay. Well I realized I was bisexual before we met, Around maybe two years before. Then when we met I had these strong feelings that I couldn't understand, because how could a stranger immediately feel like home? It was confusing and overwhelming. So I didn't say anything, not even when we became best friends because it meant too much to me to fuck it up. I didn't think you liked men and if you did I didn't want to assume it included me. But my feelings never go away they just get stronger with time. I love you Eric Beckerman and I'm willing to give us a chance, because I really want it to work." He finishes by grabbing Eric's hand and holding it in his. Okay my turn. Now or never, lay it all out. "Well I mentioned I was working through something, that something was how I felt about you and when the feelings started. I didn't realize until last night I was in love with you, at least realize that's what it was. I just always thought it was a crush so I ignored it because I thought you were stright. But deep down inside me I've always known you're it for me, so I settled for friendship because I was willing to be whatever you allowed me to be to you. I had found out a year before us meeting I was into men too. So it wasn't something I went around screaming at the time. But I also think it was something to do with my feelings too as to why I never told you. Tom Phelan I love you so much it hurts, you mean everything to me and I really don't want to fuck this up so I'll take this however fast you decide to." Squeezing his hand Tom pulls him on top of him, they land with Eric straddling his lap and his head on the older man's chest. Wrapping his arms around the man beneath him the best he can he's sighs, this is perfect. He let's out a soft almost moan when Tom starts to card his fingers through Eric's crazy hair. Nope, now it's perfect.

They stay like this for a long time, in perfect silence just holding each other in the moment not wanting to move for fear of breaking it. Moving his head to lock eyes with Tom he smiles, "I really do want this to work. You mentioned earlier that you wanted to know if I needed you so you could be there. I remember thinking that if only you knew exactly how much I do need you. That if you knew you'd run away from me. I know it was stupid to think but it was an actual fear I had. But I was so happy you decided to tell me. You telling me means you trust me with that and it means so much to me." It's kind of all whispered into the little space between them. Eric knows talking was a risk because it could ruin everything, they'd been laying like this for an hour in silence and if that had given him time to think it had given Tom that same chance. The older man leans forward and kisses Eric's cheek sending shocks through his entire body making him shiver slightly. Pulling away to smirk at him Tom kisses his cheek again causing his heart to flutter. Suddenly a thought occurrs to the younger man and for once he doesn't have to keep it to himself. "As many times as you've kissed my cheek before but now that I know it's with a different purpose it makes my heart do crazy things." Closing his eyes as the man places another soft kiss there. "Anything else change?" It's quiet in his ear and makes his entire body shiver for the second time. Nope, that always made me weak. Shaking his head no makes him realize that it implies Tom has always had this effect on him, which he has so it's not a lie it's just suddenly terrifying.

Tom let's his fingers trail over any inch of exsposed skin on his arms just lightly touching. This also causes the younger man to shiver, "Tom." It's not a moan but it's soft and quiet. He's extremely embarrassed to finish his sentence but it has to be said so the older man can understand. "You've, uh, you've always had this effect on me. I just learned to repress the reaction or hide it from you and anyone else in the room." The thing is the shiver wasn't sexual, it's just simply his reaction to the man. Being touched by Tom feels like he's been without oxygen and is suddenly getting it, the cheek kisses make his heart skip a beat because it means the other man is comfortable with that even if they weren't together. But now we are together. Wait... Will we tell anyone? Sitting back he looks at the man as panic over takes him. "what's wrong Eric?" He's sitting up to press back into the couch arm. Trying to steal his panic so he doesn't worry the man with his stupid thoughts, "what? Nothing is wrong why would you think that?" It's very obvious to everyone something is wrong now because his voice cracks a little. Fuck! The older man shakes his head, "I know you well enough to know the signs of when you're getting inside that pretty little head of yours to the point of panicking. Well now that we are together you're going to have to promise me you'll talk to me." It's like he's had it written down for years, like a speech he has to deliver at an awards ceremony. Sighing Eric shifts to where one of his legs in in between Tom's and the other one in the same place on the outside but his knees aren't bent. He lays his head on the man's chest burying his face in it to hide his slight blush. "I promise. It's stupid but. I'm afraid to tell the others about us. It's not that I'm ashamed or anything but what if they make it this big deal and it changes everything. So far nothing really has changed, we were close friends and now we're still close friends that just make out on occasion. Well actually we've kissed once and it was on accadent." It's muffled by the older man's shirt but he knows he was heard. There's a little quiet laugh from the man holding him and it makes him feel a little better. "Eric we don't have to tell them until we're ready, but for the record and to their credit I don't think it would be a big deal to them. Like you said we were already very close and now we're still close friends but we do things normal friends don't. They're used to us basically being a damn couple around them so I don't see how throwing in a few kisses or hand holding into the mix will bother them." His words seem to make every single worry that had entered his head disappear. Tom was the only one that seemed to make that happen, it's why he always called the man if he couldn't calm himself down. He was overwhelmed with the greatest feeling, leaning back enough to look back into Tom's eyes he whispers into the tiny space between them "kiss me."

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The older man wasted no time and the moment his lips met Eric's the younger man had found his favorite thing. Kissing Tom felt like coming home, their lips fit perfectly like they were a two piece jigsaw puzzle. The man's lips are surprisingly soft and taste faintly like candy. Moving their lips together in a slow but very passionate kiss Eric let's his arms pull the older man as close as possible while Tom's hands tangle into his hair. This was something the younger man never wanted to end, the feel of Tom's lips on his taking his breath away in the most spectacular way possible but also giving him oxygen to breathe was already addicting. God I love him. Much to the younger man's dismay the other man pulled away, he keeps their lips inches apart as he takes in as much air he can. Fuck air. Not able to contain the feeling his heart is slowly spreading through him he places kisses around Tom's face, on his nose, the corner of his mouth, anywhere he can. The man beneath him laughs at his antics, "Eric, slow down you need to breathe." Stoping his adorable attack on the man's face he leans back enough to look at him. His eyes are shining with emotion, mostly love, his lips are shiny and puffy from kissing. The man has his mouth slightly parted as he takes deep breaths trying to fill his lungs with air. I can get used to this. He's gorgeous. "Sorry I'm just so happy. I just love you so much." He punctuates the statement with another kiss to his nose.

He laughs again and pulls Eric into a hug. "We're going to be late. Come on get up." Sighing he pushes up off of the man and stands. Grabbing everything he normally takes with him he's about to get his shoes on when arms wrap around his waist and pull him backwards into Tom's chest. "I love you." There's a small kiss pressed to his neck that causes him to smile like a maniac. How did I get so lucky? Pushing out of his arms to finish getting ready to leave the other man grabs his keys. Walking out the door he desperately wants to grab Tom's hand but he refrains because it was his idea not to say anything to people. Why did I ever decide that? Sighing he settles for walking in step with him, opening the driver side door the other man hands him the keys. So glad he grabbed those or I would have had to go back in. He sends a quick smile in thanks and gets in. Buckling up he makes sure his mirrors are adjusted right then puts the keys in the ignition and starts the car. He hears Tom's seat belt click and pulls out, the dirve to the FBE Studio was quiet besides the radio playing music on a low volume. When they pull up Eric feels panic taking ahold of him, what if they notice. What if we are acting different than before and they figure it out. Will they take it okay if they do? Before he can worry to much there's a hand grabbing his. Turning to face the other man he is surprised when he's met with a quick soft kiss to the lips. "It'll be okay." He nods and unbuckles getting out of the car.

The first person they run into on the way inside is Mikaela, she gives Eric a look that means she knows something but she simply waves as she goes to leave. Taking another breath he tries not to think about the conversation they'll have to have later about this. Of course Mikaela knows, she's too smart for her own good. Shaking his head he walks in the door and they run into Brandon. "Oh hey guys! What's up?" Eric smiles because at least someone doesn't see right through them. "Just trying not to run late." Tom answers but it makes Brandon pull a confused face. He seems to have a thought and his eyes widened. "Uh well have fun I got off early today so I'll just be um going." The man walks out the door in a slight hurry. That was strange, I wonder what th- oh shit. He knows. Looking at Tom he frowns a little this day was not going how he expected it to. "I want to leave." It's quiet enough for the people around them not to hear but loud enough the older man hears it. He glances up at Eric concerned but nods, Tom walks off and comes back three minutes later with a piece of paper. "Okay so we have to work today no excuse. So I asked if they needed anything from the store we could go get because we both had to much energy to stay inside. Now let's go buy.." he glances down at the paper, "a shit ton of duct tape, Oreos, pens, chapstick, water, and baby powder?" Laughing he turns to open the door and walk out. This I can do. At least he can work and not be stuck inside with people he's hiding something from.

Getting back in the car they drive to the nearest store that has the stuff on the list. Eric turns the car off and pauses before unbuckling, "Thanks. For uh, for finding something to do outside the office today. It means a lot." Tom just smiles at him brightly and leans in for a kiss. Their lips stay together just moving for a few minutes until they really need to go inside. Looking at the list again Tom rasies his eyebrow, "I think this is just stuff Alex wants." The younger man shrugs, anything to get out of there for awhile. Opening his door he gets out, as they're walking twords the entrance their fingers brush lightly and Eric wants nothing more than to just grab his hand but he can't, luckily they make it inside before he just gives in. Walking in they head straight for the office supply, there's so many different types and colors of pens they decide to get a bunch of Black, blue, and red. They're standing looking at the duct tape when a girl walks up to them, she smiles at Tom shyly. "My friends uh dared me to come over and talk to you. I'm Lola." She's got a sweet quiet voice that Eric would almost find adorable if she wasn't ogling Tom. He smiles at her and suddenly the younger man wishes they had just stayed in the office. At least there no one is going to flirt with him. Well not and mean it that is. "Hi, I'm Tom. This is Eric." He gestures to him as he mentions the other man. She looks over at him for a moment then seems to think for a second before smiling at him and going back to the older man. "Well I'm sure one of my friends would like him. I was just wondering if you were single and wanted to go on a date." She bats her lashes at him and Eric's blood boils. What the fuck?! She has no right to do that in front of me! Wait this is your fault because you made the stupid no telling rule.

Before he can tell the girl to kindly leave them alone Tom speaks, "Actually I'm taken by a really lovely guy I've been in love with for a while so I'll pass Lola." A frown takes over her face at the same moment a smile takes over Eric's. "Well what the boyfriend doesn't know won't hurt him. If not a date how about a little fun?" He pretty sure his jaw just hit the floor, she's running her hand up and down his forearm looking at the older man through her lashes. What the hell does she think she's doing?! Having enough of the display happening before him he grabs Tom's elbow and pulls him back so he can step between the girl and him before the other man can even respond. "He said no. Also I can assure you his boyfriend would indeed find out, plus Tom said no and I don't appreciate you trying to force yourself on him so please leave now." The words are venom said in a low growl making the girls eyes widen in shock. He had his arms crossed in front of him pinning her with a glare. "I'm sorry who are you to him? you don't make his choices for him do you? What do you say Tom wanna ditch this loser and go have fun?" The girl once again bats her lashes as she twirls a piece of her hair around her finger. Eric is aware of the older man's hand on his shoulder as a sign they could just leave but he's not done here. This girl has to learn you can't just try to pressure someone into sex. "The loser happens to be his boyfriend. Also you can't just bat you lashes at someone and try to pressure then into something they've already said no to. The fact you even had the nerve to press is sicking." He said it loud, louder than he had meant to but he was so pissed off at her pressuring his boyfriend for sex with him standing right there. She doesn't get the right to touch him, he's not hers and he doesn't want her. He doesn't want her. It doesn't come as a shock to Eric that most of this anger was stemmed from jealousy, he wasn't the most confident person in relationships and the girl was very beautiful. But he trusts Tom anyway plus he had said no. He notices that Tom's grip has tightened on his shoulder and her mouth has hit the floor. She starts to stutter but before she gets anything out he's being pulled out of the store and back to the car leaving the list and cart behind.

Tom opens the back driver side door the moment it's unlocked and pushes the younger man inside on his back. Groaning as the older man climbs in on top of him whilst shutting the door behind him, immediately the man's lips were on his in a desperate kiss. Holding onto the man's hips he let's his tongue slide across his bottom lip begging for more, Tom opened his mouth almost instantly to let Eric's tongue slide in and explore. He taste like toothpaste and something distinctly Tom, god did he love it. Their tongues battled only a moment for domance when Eric gives in letting the older man win. While this was the hottest thing ever it wasn't sexual for them, yes it was doing things to him but that wasn't his goal. They both had the same goal and that was to kiss the other until they couldn't breathe, then catch their breath and do it all over again. "I love you." Tom said between kisses. As hard as he was trying Eric couldn't get the thought of that girl putting her hands on his boyfriend, growling he flips them over as quick as the small space of the backseat allowed. Breaking the kiss he looks at the man beneath him, "hold still." It's a demand not a request and from the look on the other man's face he doesn't mind that. Latching onto his Boyfriend's neck right above where his shirt collar is Eric sucks on the skin there, he's gentle at first then bites down hard enough to bruse it. Tom groans under him and fists his hands in the younger man's hair, "Oh fuck. Eric what the hell everyone is going to see that!" He doesn't sound angry just shocked. Well I did say I wanted it to be secret. But screw that I want everyone to know he's mine. I'm not sure where this came from, I blame the girl in the store. Licking it once to soothe the sting he pulls back to smile at the man, "that's the point." It's another deep growl. Tom's eyes go wide and he touches Eric's face, "but you said that you didn't wan-" "I know. But seeing that girl touch you like that, it made me so angry with her and myself. Because she didn't know you were mine and no one else's because I wouldn't let you say it. God I'm a horrible boyfriend. I'm sorry I should have-" the older man lunges up to capture his lips again but this time the kiss is softer and shorter.

Opening his eyes when they part enough to let their lips ghost over the others Eric's hazel eyes meet melted chocolate. Tom's eyes are shining with love and it's all for him, "Okay." The older man whispers into the small space, "let's tell the world we belong to each other. I love you." Eric presses a kiss to his lips and mumbles against them "I love you too." And he just holds Tom like that for a long time not even thinking about what anyone else says because this is who they are, they love each other and that's all that matters for now. This is enough for me.

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Getting out of the backseat and hoping in the front Eric starts the car and drives back to the office. Pulling into the parking lot Eric looks over at Tom to see if he's okay. "You sure you want to do this?" He asks it like he himself isn't sure. The older man nods his head, "I'm positive Eric. But are you sure you want to do it?" His smile is replaced by worry and the younger man knows he has to hide his panic. Just breathe damnit. Taking a breath he nods trying his best to smile, "Yeah I'm sure." The other man's face goes serious and he pins Eric with a glare. "Babe, don't bullshit me." His tone leaves no room for argument. Sighing the younger man looks at his boyfriend and drops his fake smile, "You're right, I'm not sure I can do it. It's not that I don't want to tell them, it's more I'm terrified of what they'll say when we tell them." Admitting it out loud made him feel even worse because these people are his friends and family, they've always been so kind and welcoming to him. They won't think any less of you. But what if they do? They won't. Tom puts his hands on his face making them hold eye contact, "it'll be okay, we've got this Eric." He leans in and kisses him quickly so no one around will see. Nodding his head they unbuckle and get out to go inside.

The first person they run into is Alex, "Uh... Guys where's my stuff?" They both stop short and look at each other. Shit. Tom shrugs and looks back to Alex. "Forgot to go back in for it. Also we have something to say so go get everyone please." The man's face has confusion written on it but he nods and walks away to get the others. Eric pulls the older man into a hug and kisses his cheek, they're just pulling away when Alex comes in with everyone behind him. Once everyone has taken a seat a silence falls over them as everyone awaits their surprise announcement. Looking at Tom and taking a deep breath Eric decides he should be the one to say it, the older man nods ever so slightly to signal him to start. "Okay so uh, m me and Tom are d dating." He stutters over the words at the end and the older man takes his hand and squeezes lightly smiling at him. Before the other man can add anything Alex, Brandon, and Sean jump out of the seats they were in, that happened to be in a row, at the same time to scream. "Finally!" Everyone exspecially Julie, Tom, and Benny gave them looks that could kill making the Trio sit back down suddenly and stay quiet. Again squeezing his hand the other man speaks, "We weren't going to say anything until we were a few days or weeks into things but... something happened at the store that changed Eric's mind." Looking over at him Eric smirks thinking about the events in the backseat of the car. Not here. Turning his attention back to the people he considers his family he smiles more. "By something he means this girl shamelessly flirted with him and pushed for sex after he said no he was in a relationship with someone and I got pissed and slightly jelious and told her off." He can see the man's lips turning up into a smile as he continued, "so then he tugged me out of the store and um we made out in the backseat of my car where I decided I couldn't handle not being public because that meant people could flirt with him and I wouldn't be able to intervene." It came out rushed and breathless. Thank God the kids aren't here today. 

Everyone smiles and takes turns congratulating us on the relationship. It's all supportive and sweet, then when the two fairly new people walk up the short ginger haired one turns to the girl and says , "I want a relationship like this Lu." Then their eyes widen and they turn to face Alex, "Hey wait a minute you owe me twenty dollars Wex!" Then the girl he's assuming is named Lu smirks as her friend runs after the dark haired man as he takes off down the hallway. "That's the right attitude Skylar, go chase the man if you want him!" She yells after the ginger now identified as Skylar. Tom's eyes widen a little next to him. " two were fans before right?" The girl nods and smiles while walking away and twords Sean and some other girl he didn't recognize. Benny and Rafi are the last people to talk to them. "Why don't you both go home for the day." Rafi says as his brother nods in agreement beside him. Thanking them all they head back out to the car. Deciding Tom's place was better than his house since his parents were coming home soon he headed there. The car ride is filled with longing looks from both of them, the older man occasionally seeming to undress him with his eyes making him shiver. Pulling up they waste no time getting inside, the moment the door is shut Eric is pushed against it by the older man. His arms pinned to the door above him by his wrists as Tom's lips attack his neck making him shiver in excitement. The man nips the skin where his neck and shoulder meet making him groan, "What brought this on?" He breathes out. Tom only bites down again in response making the younger man buck his hips into him. Holy shit. When the man finally stops his attack on his neck he kisses the man's lips still holding his wrists in place. "There's just something extremely sexy about you telling everyone I'm yours. It also helps you made me think about what happened in the car before." He mumbles against the younger man's lips whilst letting his wrists go.

Trying to catch his breath Eric thinks about the fact they might be moving to fast, that they're risking everything good they've already built by doing anything now. Then again wevwe been playing cat and mouse since we met. Gay chicken if you will. To be quite honest with anyone the younger man has been sexually frustrated for months because anytime he tried to fix it by jerking off he would think of the man in front of him making him feel guilty. Screw it I need this. I'll stop if he tells me to. Grabbing the man's hips he smiles softly, "Tell me to stop and I will immediately." With the instant nod of the man's head he leans in to kiss him and pulls their bodies together. Backing them slowly twords the bedroom door and pushing the man against it, he grids his hips hard making their clothed cocks rub together making Tom's breath hitch. "Fuck, Eric." Their lips don't break apart as they deepen the kiss, tongues dance around wrapping and twisting around each other. Reaching a hand down the older man trys to open his bedroom door, he fumbles for a moment before it swings open and they stumble in. The younger man kicks it closed to be immediately slamed up it. "Mmm" gripping the back of Tom's head he knots his fingers in his hair as best as he can. Breaking apart the kiss Eric keeps his head there so after a few deep breaths he can give another sloppy kiss with tongue to the man. His oxygen supply isn't much but with the lust, love, and rush he has it makes his skin and brain buzz pleasantly. He's about to suggest moving to the bed when the older man puts his hands on the backs of his thighs signaling him to jump. "Uh Tom are you sure I don't think you can- AH!" Before the sentence is fully out the older man is picking him up and they stumble a little until Tom loses his footing and lands in the floor with the younger man stratling his waist, his head laying on his chest as he breaks down laughing. "Shut up." The man beneath him protests smacking his arm playfully making him laugh harder. "I tried to warn you. Also are you okay? Did you break anything?" The man turns a beautiful red and he squeaks. "I'm fine, nothing broken. But can you imagine the look on the doctor's face when we explained that one?" Snorting he leans down connecting their lips together again in a soft but demanding kiss.

Pulling back he leans down to whisper in his ear, "bed. Now." Standing up off of him and helping him up. Tom lays down first and the younger man stratles his hips once more. Running his hands down the man's chest he pushes his hands under his shirt and up his warm skin slowly mapping him out. Moaning the older man grips his hips rough and bucks up into him when his thumb ghosts over his left nipple. "Eric." His name is a broken whisper spilled from the other man's lips. Doing it again Tom groans beneath him and jerks again, on the fourth time repeating it the man growls and all of a sudden Eric is on his back with the older man holding his wrists above his head again . "No teasing." He growls as he lowers himself to nip his neck again. Hooking his fingers on the hem of the man's shirt he pulls it up over his head and tosses it in a random direction, Tom then repays the favor by taking Eric's off too. The man leans back down and latches on to his neck again as he begins rocking his hips down into the younger man's. Moaning he wraps his legs around the man's waist and his arms around his upper torso pulling them closer together as they grind their hips.

Eric is having a hard time forming a thought that makes any sense and he couldn't care less. His mind is short circuiting in the most amazing way possible, at this point he's gripping onto the older man for dear life as they thrust together. Letting out a frustrated growl Tom leans back and grabs the younger man's jeans waist band pulling them down off his legs to leave him in boxers. His jeans soon follow and soon the man's back above him and grading down harder than before. Oh god I love him so much. Ah fuck. The added factor of there being less fabric between them makes the friction sweeter, "Ah, Tom." It comes out as more of a whimper than he meant for it to. But he can't help it, he's desperate for the man above him. Eric had spent years pinning after him, years feeling guilty about his feelings and the inappropriate dreams or fantasies they caused. So who can blame him that when he suddenly learns the feelings are mutual that he is reduced to a moaning mess just from this. His grip on Tom is the only thing keeping him grounded anymore because his mind is fogged and nothing but pleasure is relevant. The older man takes his hand and puts it between them using his thumb and forefinger he pinches the younger man's right nipple. At the same time he grinds down hard whilst biting down hard enough to bruise right where his neck and collarbone meet. Arching his back off the bed Eric comes, his vision going white he shuts his eyes. The only words he remembers are Tom and Love, they mix together in his brain making him giddy as he moans loudly. He's only slightly aware of Tom coming in his own boxers before he's collapsing into him. They stay like this until Eric is overly aware of the mess in his boxers. "We need to clean up." His voice comes out strained and gravely.

Tom gets up and walks to the bathroom, he comes back moments later with two wet wash rags. He throws one at the younger man and turns to his dresser. Taking this as a chance Eric takes his boxers off and wipes away his mess throwing both the rag and boxers in the floor. The older man comes over handing him a pair of blue boxers that he slides on. When the other man slides back into the bed to lay on top of him he smiles, I love him so much. "Eric?" It's whispered into his neck. Wrapping his arms around the man's lower back as his arms rest under the younger man's biceps with his legs between his. "Yes?" Fighting off sleep to see what the older man wants. He places a kiss right under Tom's jawline as the man turns his face more into his neck. "I'm glad we told them." A yawn breaks through his words cutting him off, "I love you." Eric hums in the back of his throat and kisses that spot again, "I love you too." They're silent for a long time and Eric thinks Tom is asleep as he himself is almost there when the man whispers in his ear. "I promise to not mess this up." Squeezing the man a little with his arms he falls asleep and Tom follows shortly after.

They could be moving too fast in everyone else's eyes but for Tom and Eric this is the perfect speed. Years of waiting and pinning after the other ended and they needed to let of some steam. So yes it is fast but not for them.

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Eric was pretty sure he knew all of his favorite things, like listening to Fleetwood Mac in the rain. But that was before waking up next to Tom, he finds his new favorite thing is something he never expected to actually happen. The way the early morning light filters through his dark brown hair and the lone strand that falls in his eyes, his mouth slightly parted as he breathes making his chest rise and fall slowly. He looks so peaceful laying there with not a care in the world and it makes the younger man's chest tight. How did I get so lucky? Of all the women, hell of all the men that are out there why did he pick me?  What goes through his mind when he sees me? God I love him so much. He knows it's pathetic but sometimes he can't help but feel like he's not attractive enough to be with Tom. Deep down he knows it's stupid but he really can't help it, exspecially when thinks about all the people the older man could have if he just said something. The thought that the man laying next to him doesn't know how truly amazing he is puzzles Eric, how could someone like him settle for someone like me?

He thinks back to all of their time together as friends then to best friends, about all the deep conversations with the things he's told the older man that he's told no one else. Thinks about the inside jokes and the laughter they've shared, about the time he couldn't sleep because he was depressed and his parents weren't home but didn't want to be alone, so he texted Tom and he came over to sit with him. He remembers he actually fell asleep crying that night in the man's arms and woke up to him making pancakes. They work great together so I guess maybe it does make sense he picked Eric. Smiling at the memories he also thinks about what Tom said last night about not messing this up but decides he doesn't want to think about them breaking up or not being together. So instead he thinks about that if he doesn't want it to end what does he want? I love him that much I know but where do I see this going if I don't see it ending? There's no doubt that I would marry him if given the chance. To tell the world we are together forever would make me happy beyond belief. I can even see us having a few kids together that I play ukulele for while we sing them to sleep. Living in a big house together with a few pets too. God I can even see us sitting in rocking chairs both with grey hair and holding each other's hands. Fuck I want to spend my whole life with him. This realization hits the younger man like a brick wall and he gasps in a breath. He wants to grow old with the man beside him and it would surely kill him if that never happens.

Tom stirs awake next to him stretching his body making his joints pop. "Mmmm morning babe." He says in a half sarcastic half seductive tone. Launching himself into the older man he connects their lips in a desperate desire to convey all of his feelings for the man. "Hmm I don't know what I did to deserve this but I am definitely not complaining." His lips move against Eric's and he pulls him into his lap. "I just." The younger man gasps for breath as Tom  rocks his hips up into his. "Ah! I just really really love you." He grids down onto him and the older man growls. "I love you too." He says as he flips them over. After that everything is a blur of pleasure and moans, Eric's pretty sure he came twice and he didn't think that was possible. He doesn't mind though because he's here in Tom's arms, he's here with the man he loves and wants to spend the rest of his life with. It doesn't matter because he loves him back and even if he doesn't want to grow old together this is enough for him.

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It had been a week since Tom and Eric had started dating but sadly they were extremely busy at work and the only time they really got together where they could talk was lunch. They loved their friends and co-workers but there wasn't a possibility of them being left alone at lunch even though they could talk. Eric was becoming frustrated that he didn't have time to spend alone with his boyfriend. In complete honesty he was furious that he hadn't been able to go on a proper date with the older man, when he saw them together finally this was not what he thought. What if he wants to leave me? What if he's already bored of me and knows he can do so much better? Glancing at the man across from him he sighed in frustration then went to open his mouth to speak before being rudely interrupted. "Hey Eric I was wondering if you wanted to hang out with me this evening since a lot of us are getting off early today. I really want your opinion on something." Brooklin appeared in his line of sight her head tilted to the side in question. He looked at her and then to Tom an unspoken question in his eyes. The older man looked at him sadly, "go on have fun. I don't get off till late." Nodding he leans across the table to plant a kiss on his Boyfriend's lips and then barley got to throw away his trash before Brooklin was dragging him away.

~Time Skip 1 Hour~
They had been in the same store now for almost an hour because his friend couldn't decide if she wanted to buy the dress she was currently holding up. It was solid black with some red glitter around the hem at the bottom, she was rambling on and on about how it looks cute but she's torn between getting it for herself or for Tori. Sighing Eric runs a hand through his hair. Damn I need a haircut desperately. Maybe I should ask Instagram what they think first? Pulling his phone out he takes a picture and put a poll up asking if he should get it cut or stay looking like a poodle. The woman looks up from the dress annoyed at him for not paying attention. "Seriously Eric. What are you even doing?" Her eyes narrow at him but she's clearly amused. "I'm asking Instagram if I should get my haircut. I look like a human poodle." Brooklin laughs her Beautiful full laugh and smiles at him. Suddenly it hits him that Brooklin is his best friend besides Tom so he can voice concerns to her that he can't to his now boyfriend. "Hey um Brooklin?" The woman whips around to look at him again he take notice she ended up picking the dress in the size for Tori. "Yeah?" Her voice has this Strange tone to it like she's been waiting for him to ask something.  "I...I'm worried that. What if....ugh." his words fail him. It's not even something he's let himself think about because the one time he did he had a panic attack and ended up in his bathroom floor hyperventilating. Which was embarrassing because Brandon had been on his way there and he had the door unlocked for him to just walk in resulting in the man walking in on his second panic attack. He walked him through it and asked him if he wanted to talk about it but Eric had shrugged it off as no big deal. "You're worried one day Tom's gonna lose interest and decide to end it especially now since you haven't even been able to go on a date?" His eyes snapped up to meet hers wide and fearful. Am I really that obvious!? Words again failed him so he just nodded. The question is how did she know all that, as far as he can remember he hadn't told anyone. "Brandon told me. Said you had a panic attack a few days ago and he calmed you down but not before in a trance haze you replied to his 'it's okay eric.' with 'it's not okay! He's going to leave me and I'm going to break.' didn't take much for him to put it together." She lays the dress and a few items he didn't remember her picking up on the checkout counter for a red haired man to ring up then places her hand on his shoulder. Fuck I wonder if he told Tom? What if Tom wants to leave now because I'm clingy. What if he hates me now. He's aware she's speaking to him but his ears fill with white noise and his breathing becomes quick and shallow making him feel like he's not breathing at all. It's like he's fallen through a thin sheet of ice in a snow storm and is drowning in the lake. The room is becoming fuzzy just like his mind and his lungs are burning in a desperate cry for oxygen to fill them. There's a hand on his face followed by a muffled voice, now there's a wall against his back and a hard cold force under him. Am I dying? Is this what dying feels like? He can hear panicked voices talking but nothing is clear through the fog and noise. Eric's slowly curling in on himself into a ball because suddenly he's freezing to death. I'm going to die. I don't want to die not without Tom here holding me. Why am i alone? Where's Tom? Did he finally realize I'm not good enough for him? That must be it. His breath is fading and he's positive these are his last moments but then there's lips on his warm and familiar. The man is trying desperately to figure out who the lips belong to but his mind is scattered.

There's a voice saying his name against his ears and the sound is flooding in. Tom. He's here. I'm not going to die he's gonna make it okay. His vision is still blurry but his hearing is back and he's uncurling himself to wrap around the warmth that's pulling him from the cold lake of ice. "Tom. I.." he can hear himself trying to talk and someone shushing him. "Eric it's fine, it's okay I'm here and I am not going anywhere." The younger man can't respond so he just kisses the older man. But then his vision starts coming back to him and he realizes that they're in the floor in the store Brooklin standing there with wide wet eyes the cashier with the red hair standing worriedly behind her. The realization that the cold hard surface was the tile floor and the wall the checkout counter hit him and his cheeks lit up in embarrassment. I just had a panic attack in the store. I was crying in the floor. "Can you walk to the car?" His boyfriend was rubbing his cheek as he spoke in a soft voice. The younger man tried to get up but his body was jelly causing him to fall forward into Tom as the man caught him to hold him up right. He was about to let go and walk when he registered he was being picked up. Oh no he's gonna drop me again. "Tom I can- AH!" He squealed as an arm wrapped under his knee and one around his waist as his side pressed into a hard chest. Tom is carrying me. Bridal style. Through the mall to the car. Ohmygod. He heard an audible squel of delight from beside him and his eyes met with the red haired cashiers, wait a second.... Markiplier?! "Holy shit. You're Markiplier. But wait why are you here?" The red haired man smiles "doing a video so I had to learn to be a cashier. Also you remind me of my boyfriend Sean with how he acts when I pick him up like that." His eyes crinkle at the sides as he talks about Sean, wait what?! "Holy fuck Septiplier Away!" He yelled as his boyfriend took that as a cue to carry him away.

Once at the car he was placed on the ground as Tom unlocked the door. He wobbles to get in and shuts the door, the older man slides in the driver's seat and pauses looking at him then shaking his head starting the car. The ride is silent and he can see the gears turning in his Boyfriend's head. Silence becoming suffocating he looks out the window to see they're pulling into a park and that it's become dark out. "Uh Tom I thought you were taking me ho-" "shush. Get out." He does as told as the man gets out to meet him at the front of the car. Taking his hand he drags Eric down a path lined with trees, they walk for awhile when they come into a clearing. The grass is short, there's a thick blanket on the ground with a shit ton of pillows and other blankets on it with a basket in the middle. Theres a weeping willow tree farther back into the clearing that has Mason jars lit up and hanging from branches. It's the most beautiful thing Eric's seen. Turning to his boyfriend he smiles and kisses him softly, when they pull away for air Tom's eyes are sparkling. "Surprise! Welcome to our first official date Eric. Alex helped set the lights up and Tori helped pick out the perfect picnic food. Oh and Brooklin helped find the location, she also distracted you while we set it up." Their lips meet again in a soft kiss, lips unmoving instead just pressed together loving the way it feels. The younger man runs his hands up between them onto the older man's shirt to fist his hands into the fabric, Tom's hands go to his waist both of them pulling the other closer. "I love it. I love you. I- mmm" Eric's rambling is cut off with another kiss, he realizes he's being moved backwards and then he's pushed down into the pillows. His boyfriend is on him in seconds kissing at his neck and his hands roaming around his chest. A moan excapes the hazel eyed man as he pushes back on the other man's chest. "Fuck as much as I'd love for you to fuck me under the stars on this blanket I'm hungry." He eyes the picnic basket and Tom laughs sliding off of him but snuggling into his side. Grabbing the basket he starts pulling things out, sandwiches wrapped up in a piece of paper with a string holding it closed. Following that is a bunch of fruit in a container, what looks like a giant piece of chocolate cake, then two bottles of lemonade. Taking a sandwich and the bottle the brown eyed man is handing him he smiles. Finally, alone time.

"I was hoping we could talk about the reason you've been having panic attacks." His head snaps up like a rubber band as he looks at his Boyfriend's eyes again. Fuck. Not now. Not here. I... Despite his entire body telling him to run or say no he nods his head yes. Pushing him away is Eric's worst fear, making him think he doesn't trust him would break him even more than him leaving. "Yeah we can. I don't know exactly what Brandon told you or Brooklin for that matter but Tom I love you a lot. Almost too much for my own good." Finishing his sandwich he takes a few sips of lemonade giving the older man time enough to process. "He told me that you had a panic attack, that you seemed to think I was going to leave you for someone else. Brooklin said you were talking about that when you had the attack at the store. She said you kept mumbling something about you being a freak and that you were going to push me away." Eric flinches back a little when Tom's hand lands on his cheek to turn his eyes up so they're holding eye contact. He wasn't aware he had started crying until he felt his Boyfriend's thumb wipe away a tear. "Babe don't cry. Eric you need to understand something. I. Am. Never. Going. To. Want. Anyone. But. You. You're the only person in forever that's made me feel like this. Eric I love you so much and even if I have to tell you every single day we're together that I only want you then I fucking will. Because I'm never going to leave you, you're stuck with me okay?" The man's eyes are shining with love and admiration for him and his heart is in his throat blocking the words so he just kisses him hard. Calming down he pulls back a little to look at the darker haird man. "I can't promise you that I won't have days where I get sad or have a panic attack. I'm insecure, im always afraid you're going to realize you could do better than me. Tom you mean so much to me it hurts." The older man leans forward the few inches it takes and kisses him. "Eric I love you okay. Next time just talk to me. Please?" He kisses him again then leans back to get his food. "I promise." He smiles taking a bite of his sandwich.

A few minutes had passed in silence eating their sandwiches and other foods. "Chocolate Cake time?" Eric is embarrassed by how excited he sounds. Tom nods and grabs the plate along with two plastic forks handing one to the younger man. Together they dig in. I should feed him a piece. Getting some on the fork he smiles at his boyfriend. "Here let me." Tom opens his mouth and he places the fork between his lips letting him take the food. "Mmmm, so good." There's icing on his lips and the younger man can't control himself. Leaning forward he licks it off his lips moaning at the taste, he pushes his tongue between his lips and swirls it around his mouth. Tom kisses back eager to taste him too, getting more cake on the fork without parting he brings it back up and parts long enough to let them both take a bite and then continues kissing. This leads to Tom straddling him and pushing him back into the pillows. "Tom." He runs his hands up his back under his shirt feeling his skin. Kissing his neck and shoulder. We're in a park we shouldn't. "Tom we're in public." The older man grinds down in him and moans out an answer "I know, it's exciting." The accompanying smirk makes Eric hard in his jeans but he hesitates. Am I really open to having sex in a park? Even if it is at night and no one else is here or even comes to this clearing? Catching Tom's chocolate brown eyes he smiles up at him. "Fuck it let's do it." The Younger man says grabbing his lips. Tom moans above him.

Chapter Text

Eric shudders from his spot on the couch remembering Tom's hands on him last night. Remembering the way it felt when Tom opened him up under the stars shielded from the outside by the thick blankets. He never imagined that his first time with Tom would be under the stars like that and it made it all the more special. The younger man had promised to get help from a professional about his insecurities so now he's sat on his couch, as Tom sleeps peacefully in his bed, looking for a therapist. He's been scrolling for hours when he stops deciding to just ask his doctor for a recommendation. Taking a sip of his coffee he sighs letting the liquid warm his chest. I wonder if Tom wants to tell the fans? Most of them have suspected for years that Teric is real anyway so I can only assume they'd be accepting. Setting his computer aside he stands up stretching his muscles out moaning in satisfaction when a few joints pop. Walking into the kitchen he places his coffee mug into the sink then turns to start making breakfast.

They stopped on the way back from the park to get the ingredients for french toast. He quickly goes through the process of making it and has just put the first piece in a skillet to cook when Tom walks into the room. The older man stands in the doorway leaning on the frame admiring his boyfriend as he cooks. The light from the kitchen window bathes him in rays of soft morning light casting shadows across his shirtless torso. His grey pajama bottoms hang low on his hips revealing the band of his boxers and the lighting makes his dark brown hair almost black. He looks like a Greek god. Eric smiles even though that thought starts a wave of negative ones. Finishing the toast he turns the stove off and arranges it on plates before pouring powdered sugar on it. Tom takes one of the plates and presses a short soft kiss to his lips making him sigh. They sit at the table together legs intertwined under it, Eric wonders if maybe he should tell the other man why he's insecure. He won't laugh, he loves me and he wants me to be okay. Just explain why you feel this way, that it's not just him that causes you to think you're not worth the trouble. He lays his fork on the plate and sighs in frustration, for once could he just get his thoughts out when not on camera.

One of his problems isn't that he's bad at speaking it's that he's never able to do it with out some form of frustration when certain words don't fit right. He can talk on camera, something about the setting and the fact he knows if he fucks up it can be edited out calms him enough to breathe. But face to face he can't edit it out and pretend it didn't happen. Eric knows the fact Tom is still here even though sometimes his mind and mouth don't work together and he says things that don't make sense or just says things at the wrong time is amazing. All of your friends do that Eric. They all care about you. It's something he reminds himself daily, something no one knows he says on repeat when they playfully pick on him. Which is what it is just playful jabs nothing meant to be taken seriously, sometimes though he let's it cut to deep even though it shouldn't bother him. It's because you take things to serious. You're a buzz kill most the time. He shakes his head because he knows that he isn't always like that. No. I'm not, my friends love me and my jokes and anything else that comes with me.

He didn't realize he'd zoned out until he feels the nervous touch of the other man's hand on his. "Eric?" His voice is laced with concern and it makes his stomach flip flop. Their eyes meet the intense emotions in the beautiful warm eyes makes his head swim. When he looks into them it gives him that feeling of drinking a cup of hot chocolate after being in the snow. That how when he takes a sip the warm liquid runs down his chest melting away the cold feeling that the chill of winter caused in his bones. He takes a shuddering breath letting that warmth melt the false winter chill that he's come to know as panic away. Now Tom isn't the only one able to get him calm when he's been pulled into his own head but he certainly is the best at it. Unlike everyone else he didn't force him to talk about it right after, he gave him time to think and figure out why it happened before asking. He let's me talk when I'm ready, he doesn't want to push me. Eric's not sure why this realization causes his heart you clench in overwhelmed emotions and for his breath to be taken away, he assumes it's from the pure amount of love he holds for the other. "Are you okay?" The hand on his is stroking soothing circles into his skin. A small lazy smile finds his face and he nods. "I'm..." He goes to say he's fine but he's not completely so he changes his words. "No. Not completely but I think with time I could be...with talking about it and learning why I feel these things." Hearing his own uncertain voice makes him mentally slap himself. Great now he'll worry.

There isn't much time to scold himself for his choice of words because Tom is smiling this wide full of teeth smile that makes his heart flutter. "I'll be there to help. So will everyone else, you... You know we don't actually mean to make you upset when we poke fun at you right?" Of course he'd noticed how it made him react, Tom noticed a lot of things he tried to hide and it made him nervous but also happy. "I know. I also know that I shouldn't let it bother me like it does sometimes, it's one thing to work on." Instead of the normal response he gets from people of 'stop being so sensitive it's just a joke geez!' the man nods seeming to think something over. I should talk to Brooklin later and thank her for calling him. When a pair of lips touches his he jumps out of his thoughts again. Eric responds instantly to the kiss and sighs feeling the last of the cold panic from before that was still left over seep out of his bones being completely replaced by the warmth that is Tom. It was short and soft but held so much emotion it made him dizzy and happy he wasn't standing up for fear he would have fallen over. He found his body, mind, heart, and soul longing for this forever or as long as Tom allowed it. If breakfast was like this everytime with him, all soft touches and quiet conversations with loving kisses. Well Eric thinks he really hopes Tom allows forever.

Chapter Text

As I said now that I have internet let me go into more detail as to why I disappeared. My family, me, my brother, and our mom, became homeless in June. We had no place to go at all. My mom decided to get a hotel room and we used most our money but we forgot to check for bedbugs before leaving. So that night at like 1am when everything was in storage and we were all tired me and my mom got to the room first. I had my purse on me and was holding my service dog Ashlyn. Mom decided to check before we brought our stuff in and risked getting them in our stuff. There were bedbugs so we left to stand outside the room. Long story short they refused to refund us and we slept in friends cars. We found a hotel the next day and the owner let us pay for a night there and told us to let him know if we found anyone to help us pay for a week. Mom contacted friends and one who never got on Facebook had been checking his messages and they were eating at a place right in front of the hotel. They payed it for us said not to worry. We payed few weeks on our own but we needed help still. I think I made an update while there can't remember. I know I was writing a few fanfics for a back log but then my mom's phone battery messed up and I had to let her use mine and me and my brother shared. Which was rare, so I had to use the laptop and the internet there was shit.

We ran into some bumps even more so after that but we have a house now and are gonna be okay. I'm really sorry this story suffered along with me but I'll make it up to you by figuring out a way to get my story on the laptop and posting two chapters soon. Also look out for a Rhett and Link fic, A House M.D. Hilson fic (if I ever figure out what I want to do with that one.), Maybe a few others like Darray, Desteil, sabriel, and many more in the future. I'm also working on an original book but I didn't like the way it was going so I'm gonna restart. I really hope you all forgive me for the lack of updates or even an explanation as to why there weren't any. Sadly I can't predict the future so even if this was never my intention it happened again; this time longer. Just know I will not give up on this fic. If I ever need a break for my health, mental or physical, I will tell you. If I ever disappear without warning again please don't worry, most likely something happened beyond my control and I will do my best to inform you of what when I get the chance.

Thank you all so much for supporting this story and helping me improve my skills.
Sincerely a truly grateful wannabe author,