It was late morning by the time Matthew woke up. He was surrounded by warmth and the knowledge that he didn’t have to work that day. When he reached over to Will’s side of the bed and found it chilled a frown slipped onto his face.
He really shouldn’t be surprised that the other man had already woken, but he enjoyed the few mornings that they spent together in bed. More than that he enjoyed how docile Will was in the morning, how he allowed him to properly press kisses to every inch of his skin and use his tongue to explore the body he had gotten to know so well.
After only a short time he forced himself to get up and tug on a pair of jeans from the floor, he could tell they were Will’s as soon as they were on by the way that hung off his hips. The muscle shirt he picked off the chair by the door was his own and hugged his body comfortably.
When he made his way into the kitchen the dogs quickly found out he was awake and swarmed him, looking up expectantly for pets and treats. Only then did he see the small note “Gone Fishing” Will signed it with his name and what looked like it was a heart before he thought better of it and scribbled it out. Matthew smiled to himself, the awkwardness that Will felt when trying to express his feeling only made the small things like this more special.
In a short while he made himself breakfast, sneaking a bit of his eggs to the dogs. He never would admit it to Will’s face, but he often treated them from his breakfast while Will was at work. Will would complain that it would spoil them and that they only should get treats after the two of them finished eating.
He felt particularly lazy and walked to the front door, sitting himself on the low bench in the sun. The weather was much warmer in Florida than he was used to from Baltimore, his skin darkened slightly from the sun he got now.
Tripod seemed to take his being outside for an invitation to play and brought him one of the many balls that littered their yard. It was easy enough to play fetch, and he soon had all the dogs chasing after the ball and bringing it back to him.
Just when he began to think of going back inside to wait for Will he saw a small limping form in the distance. It wasn’t until it got a little closer that he recognised that it was Will with a few fish slung over his shoulder.
The limp was enough to make him run to him in his bare feet, the dogs chasing after him, thinking he was still playing.
“What happened? Why are you limping?”
The concern made his voice tight as he stood in front of Will. He could see a bit of pink rise in Will’s cheeks.
“I slipped on my way out of the river and put my foot down in a hole. It’s just a little twist. Nothing to worry about.”
“It’s nothing to worry about if you let me take care of it.”
He bent and started to slip his arm behind Will’s legs to pick him up.
“Hey! Matthew I can walk, stop it.”
Matthew only pushed into the back of his legs forcing his knees to give out so Will fell back into his other arm. Once he had Will where he wanted him he lifted him up.
“This is just stupid.” Will grumbled the rod still tight in his hand as he was scooped up.
Matthew took his time walking back, making sure that his footing was good so that he did not drop his precious cargo. Will never stopped his continual stream of complaints, repeating a few times that he could take care of himself.
Matthew may not have been a real nurse, but he had learned enough that he could take care of Will. He could trust himself in that much. Will was important to him; he couldn’t let him hurt himself any more.
At the porch he carefully set Will on the bench, helping him get out of his fishing gear and setting it inside the mudroom for later. The fish went in the sink for cleaning, but ignored for the moment. Will was much more important.
“Matthew, I really am fine, I just need a little ice and I’ll be good to go.”
Will complained from the bench as Matthew worked on his boot, fully undoing the lace so that he wouldn’t pull on the ankle when he took it off. He could already see the swelling. Will’s perfect ankle was noticeably puffy as he slipped off the sock.
“Just let me take care of it Will, I can do this for you.”
Matthew tried to let Will hear how much he wanted to take care of him. The roll of Will’s eyes and the release of air let him know that Will gave into him. He may be difficult, but Matthew knew that Will was not used to having someone there for him, someone who wanted to take care of him.
He finished helping Will down to his underwear so that the smell of the fish no longer clung to him, the sun warming up his light skin.
Matthew was still damp from carrying Will and he didn’t even give it a second thought before he also stripped down to his boxers and helped Will stand only on his good foot. Will didn’t fight being picked up this time and fell into his arms, his face hiding in his neck. He could feel the scruff on Will’s cheeks as he nuzzled his face into his skin.
Will gave a happy little sigh as he started to fully relax into his arms. When he got him to the bedroom Matthew set him down on the edge of the bed, his arms beginning to feel the weight he had lifted.
“You are going to need to keep that foot elevated, so I am just going to set this up for you.”
“It’s really not necessary.”
Matthew ignored him, setting the pillows up so that Will would be able to lay back and elevate his foot. When the perfect nest for Will was created he helped him into it.
“Stay here, I’ll get ice and a bandage.”
Matthew could almost hear Will rolling his eyes as he left the room. He had to settle on a bag of peas, but he still had the bandages from when he was pretending to be a nurse. It had been in his bag when they had gone on the run. When he brought it back Will looked like he had happily settled down into the bed, his foot on the pillow, and nicely elevated.
He carefully took the foot in his hands, loving the excuse to touch Will as he settled the peas over it. Although Will did let out a little whimper he seemed to not be in much more pain.
Matthew took advantage of Will being stuck in bed and crawled into his side. He laid lower so that he could rest his head on Will’s shoulder, and then covered them with the blankets only up to their waists. It would help keep Will from feeling chilled while they iced his ankle.
“In twenty minutes I’ll take that off and bind it.”
Matthew let him know even though Will probably knew the procedure for a twisted ankle himself. He could feel Will watching him, and when he looked up he saw the small smile he had. Will’s cheeks were pink a warning that he was going to compliment Matthew. He waited patiently not wanting to stop it from coming out of Will’s lips.
“Thank you, I mean I didn’t need all this, but I appreciate it. Thanks.”
Matthew echoed the smile, letting his eyes roam over the face he had fallen so deeply in love with.
“Any time. I’ll always be here to take care of you.”
He pressed a light chaste kiss to Will’s lips before moving back down to rest on his shoulder. This time Matthew let his hands roam over Will’s stomach and abs. It felt good to be needed.