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Keith found himself standing in the middle of a church. It was a small one, modest and plain, but still beautiful in its own way. Its walls and floor were made of taupe wood that made the place seem dusty, but it somewhat matched the quiet atmosphere around him. The sunlight was bursting through a big window behind his left side, making the place beam with brightness.

He stood with his hands behind his back. He looked down at his white suit, at the red rose that was placed on the left pocket on his chest. His tie was red, too.

He realized soon: it's his wedding day. A wave of excitement washed him, but the emotion was soon replaced with worry.

Violet eyes scanning the altar and the small hall of the church, Keith had a feeling no one would show up. Even if he did invite anyone to the wedding, they wouldn't bother wasting their time on him. No one ever did, anyways.

He wondered who it is that he was going to marry.

Who would settle down with a man like him?

“You should stop looking so gloomy, Keith,” Shiro's voice reached his ears in a sweet tone.

Keith turned again, his heart racing, only to have his eyes open widely at the sight in front of him. Shiro was wearing an identical white suit, with a matching red tie and a matching rose to the left side of his chest. He walked slowly and calmly with a pleasant smile decorating his face that made him even more beautiful.

If that's even possible.

Shiro stopped in front of him on the altar. “It's our wedding, after all. It's a happy occasion.”

The shorter man still looked at his chosen one with wide, shocked eyes. Something in him still didn't know how to respond. “Our wedding…?” he repeated quietly. When his lover smiled more widely and nodded, Keith thought his heart was going to stop, right there and then.

“Don't you remember?” Shiro started, collecting Keith's waist between his arms, “We made a promise. When we go back to Earth, we settle down together. Make it official.”

“B-but Shiro. We're the only ones here. Don't we need a witness or something? Is it even legal to -”

“We don't need anyone else, love,” Shiro interrupted softly, and Keith's insides melted at the nickname. When a prosthetic hand cupped his cheek, he leaned into it instantly. “We only need each other. No one else matters.”

His lips finally curled up into a smile of his own; Keith nodded and shifted on his feet to stand in a steadier position, “Okay. What do we need to do?”

Shiro pointed at his rose with a playful grin. “Look inside your flower, Keith,” he hummed.

Keith's eyes rolled down. As he gazed at the upper side of the rose on his chest, he noticed a golden ring resting between the petals. A soft gasp left him when he took it out and held it gently between his fingers. It was a simple ring, just the way he liked.

“Now we need to present our vows,” his lover said. “I'll go first, okay?”

“Y-yeah,” Keith breathed bashfully.

Shiro closed his eyes and concentrated. At first, Keith didn't understand what his lover was doing, but soon he noticed a movement on each of Shiro's arms. He watched curiously as some types of flowers made their way on the limbs’ length, wrapping themselves around them in circles. When Shiro opened his eyes again, he smiled gently.

“These are my vows, Keith,” he said. He lifted his human arm, that was wrapped with ball shaped flowers that had tiny petals of purple, white and red. “The globe amaranth - an immortal love,” the explanation was soft between his lips. On his prosthetic, groups of small forget-me-nots made their way down the foreign metal, reflecting their blue shades all the way from his shoulder to his fingers, “And those you probably know. Another symbol of love and memories of loved ones.”

Keith looked at the flowers with watery eyes. He didn't know what to say - he had never been so emotional over flowers before.

A moment later, two types of white flowers decorated Shiro's forehead, creating a floral crown. One type was shaped as chubby bells facing down, as the other one's petals were small and went out and around, making shapes of circles that were made of white and green. “White clover and heather - promise and protection. I will always keep you safe, Keith. Just like you do with me, all the time.”

The breath that left Keith's lungs was slow and heavy with emotion. He couldn't keep himself from crying and laughing at the same time, as a wave of tremble made his back straighten. “Shiro… I… I don't know what to say…” he whispered.

“Then don't say anything,” Shiro smiled. “Think of your feelings towards me… And they will show.”

After nodding once, Keith closed his eyes and thought of how he felt about his lover. He thought of the huge place Shiro has taken for himself inside his heart. He thought of how much he wanted to stay by his side forever, how much he wanted to shield him from any harm and keep him safe and at peace. He thought about how much Shiro has changed his life, and how grateful he was for having him.

His eyes blinked softly when he felt the flowers making their way down his arms. On one arm there were primroses in small groups and all kinds of soft colors. Their petals were heart-shaped, true to their meaning. His other arm was covered with big, purple flowers, with their yellow center standing in a tall and long position. The bittersweet flower, with the name far away from what it really meant to Keith. “Primrose and bittersweet flower,” he whispered with a smile. “Eternal love and loyalty… like I always will be with you.”

Keith puffed softly when he felt another type of stem wrapping itself around his neck, with big, green leaves tickling his skin. Red and pink wide flowers, with their petals placed on top of each other until they close in the middle, were taking their place underneath Keith's chin. “Ah - which flower is it?” he breathed.

Shiro blushed deeply. “Red and pink camellias,” he said. “The red one… Represents passion and desire. The pink one represents longing.”

The younger man gulped his excitement as much as he could, yet the color on his own cheeks was left as evidence. “I heard it also means… Lighting fire in the heart,” he murmured.

“That really does suit you,” a soft laughter escaped Shiro's throat in a joyful manner. “In Japan, the camellia represents divinity and spring coming. I'm sure that goes, too.”

Keith smirked. “Nothing about me is divine. But since it represents my feelings for you…”

“Oh, hush, you,” the slightly older man reached his flowering arms out and caught Keith's own, only to pull him closer. The tighter their hug became, the more their flowers bloomed and grew, flowing over each other and covering each other in mutual emotions. Rich colors and scents filled the church. The light from outside became stronger and brighter, but they didn't notice. They were in each other's touch at that moment, and nothing would make them part.

A sudden quake shook the wooden walls. They didn't mind at first, but then - it became stronger. When they opened their eyes and looked around, they discovered flora has taken over the place, brought it down and opened a wide, wide field around them. Peach, orange and lemon trees bloomed in the distance, as so many types of flowers decorated the grass with their colorful blossom: sunflowers, blue violets, stock flowers, myrtles, as well as salvias, daisies and honeysuckles. The variety only continued to spread in color and type, and neither of the two men standing in the middle were able to settle his racing heart.

They looked at each other again, eyes reflecting each other and the sun.

“I love you,” Shiro said, and finally slid the golden ring on Keith's finger. “Forever.”

“I love you too, Takashi… always. Only you,” Keith replied in his own soft tone, and did the same as Shiro did with his own ring.

For a small moment, they leaned their foreheads against each other. Their eyes were closing automatically with the feeling of safety and comfort.

“May I kiss the groom?” the question flowed out of Shiro's tender smile.

“... You don't even need to ask,“ the reply was whispered.

Eyes shutting, breaths meeting skin, Keith and Shiro leaned closer and closer towards one another, until their lips brushed delicately within the sweet contact.

 

*

 

Keith woke up with a single tear coming down his cheek. He only moved to wipe it away once it reached his ear with a tickle.

He just had the most amazing dream in his life. A dream every and each cell in his body wished would come true. It didn't have to be as grandiose or helplessly romantic; it just needed to happen, even as the smallest moment in a private conversion.

He yearned for those three little words that could be said with no need for any verbal expression.

But what were the chances they were ever going to be said to him, in that particular voice?

He sat up and sighed, leaning against the wall behind his bed, in his Altean bedroom. He didn't even know he remembered so many types of flowers and their meanings, though he wasn't even sure if they were as true or as accurate as he would like to believe.

A knock on his door got him out of his thoughts. He took a deep breath in before replying. “Yeah.”

The door swifted, and Shiro's tall figure appeared before him. He seemed hesitant for some reason, nervous. He asked to come in, and after an immediate nod from his friend, his feet dropped heavily on the ground, one after the other. Keith continued on watching him when he sat on his bed, his elbows leaning on his knees.

“Shiro… are you okay?” Keith asked, his eyebrows rising up with worry.

It made Shiro smile. “... Yeah,” he exhaled and ran his prosthetic palm against the back of his head. “I just wanted to… talk you about something. It's pretty important.”

The younger man wondered why his friend's eyes wouldn't meet his, why his cheeks seemed to be colored in a deeper shade than they’re supposed to, just like his ears did.

What would be so important that it would make him -

Then, it hit him. He might not be particularly good with understanding social behavior or reading between the lines of people's certain words and expressions, but he knew Shiro. He knew him better than anyone on this ship, and maybe even more than that. He had seen him in so many different situations in his life, expressing so many emotions to so many people.

He had never seen him flustered before. Not like this.

His own heart began to accelerate.

“Keith… I… I've been thinking a lot about this. About… What I want to tell you. And I finally… I finally reached the conclusion that if I don't say it as soon as I can, I might miss the chance to say altogether… and I don't want this war to go by without letting you know.” Shiro spoke in a kind of tone his friend hasn't heard before, one of mixed emotions and uncertainty. “I don't want to regret it.”

Keith's wide eyes gazed upon Shiro with undivided attention. He gave his friend the space to think and gather his words.

Patience yields focus, after all.

“I…” Shiro finally looked at Keith, his grey eyes so shiny yet dark with enlarged pupils. His cheeks couldn't get any redder. “I love you.”

Three little words. The little words that could be expressed in so many gestures, signs and actions.

Yet those three little words were whispered so clearly, they left Keith's ears ringing and his heart on the verge of bursting out of his chest.

The air thickened with silence for a few moments. Two pairs of eyes were staring at each other until one pair was blinking repeatedly, trying to prevent any tear from running away.

Keith’s smile was getting wider by the moment, and when he held Shiro's hands in his and squeezed, his friend visibly relaxed. “I… I love you too, Shiro,” he whispered, feeling a pleasant sensation filling his body.

The both of them laughed shakily before pulling each other into a hug. They squeezed their bodies against each other so much, that if they could, they would merge together into one entity. They felt each other's hot breaths against their necks, ran their hands all over each other's back. Once, it was merely a touch on the shoulder. Now it could finally be so much more.

Shiro moved his head back to look at Keith properly. His human hand cupped the other's cheek with such tenderness, it made the hair on the back of Keith's neck stand. “Can I kiss you?” the slightly older man asked shyly, yet with enough determination in his eyes to appear confident.

A deja-vu played in Keith's head, and his smile reached his eyes instantly. “You don't need to ask,” he cooed, leaning forward while closing his eyes. The contact between his lips and Shiro's was so soft and sweet, that his entire body trembled with delight. Just like in his dream.

The kiss deepened gradually, as the two of them opened their mouths more widely, and two tongues reached out for the other, licking lips and teeth and wet muscle.

Slowly but surely, Shiro pushed Keith down on his back. His head hit the pillow gently, and the warmth that spread in his body from excitement and touch was making his mind spin. Impulsively, he made them turn, so that at the moment he was the one who lied on top of the bigger man.

“Keith…” Shiro moaned into Keith's mouth, wrapping his arms around the younger man and placing his palms on his lower back. “Um… d-do you want to… um…”

“Yeah,” he whispered back, cupping the other one's cheeks in his smaller hands and let his thumbs rub gently against those attractive cheekbones. He gulped visibly, but smiled all the same. “I'd love that. If you want me, too, of course.”

“Christ, believe me… There's nothing I want more right now…” Shiro said, licking his lips. He could already feel himself harden against Keith's own erection. “But… are you sure we should do it now? I mean, what if someone hears us, or Allura calls us to go to the lions?”

“Then we'll stop,” Keith hummed simply, his rose lips pressing every now and again against the other set - at first with hesitation, then more comfortably. “We can use the soap from the shower… It's much better than the soaps on Earth.”

Shiro blushed deeply, even more so when he saw Keith's grin. “And… Protection?” he asked carefully.

“I can look for something, if you want,” Keith murmured, looking away as his own shyness was catching up with him. “Even if not… I’m clean.” Even though he didn't need confirmation, Shiro told him that he's clean, as well. “Then… I'll be right back, yeah?”

“Okay,” Shiro nodded, and finally let go of Keith. He watched him go to the further part of the room and into the bathroom, and the moment the other man was absent from his field of view - the black paladin took the pillow and groaned into it. His chest swelled with such excitement, disbelief and so much happiness, he thought he was going to explode.

Keith loved him back. Keith wanted him, too.

It may have been the best day of his life.

He breathed hard when he felt that his pants got so tight on him that it hurt. Up until now, he would have concealed it, ignored it, willed it away by distracting himself or simply took care of it himself when he found the time.

Thinking about the option of Keith being with him that way after such a long time without being touched really did sound like a dream come true.

He heard a clearing of a throat and sat up. His face couldn't get any hotter when he saw Keith standing by the bathroom’s door, entirely naked, head bowed forward with embarrassment. Keith's hand was moving to his hair, pushing a lock of it behind his ear. His lean, muscular body looked perfect in the room's light, and the obvious shyness of his body-language had him appear ethereal.

“Um… I - I couldn't find any kind of protection… I mean - nothing that I could… identify,” Keith said softly. He took slow, hesitant steps towards Shiro, still insisting on looking down at his feet. His right hand held a bottle of soap.

Shiro got up and stood in front of him. He leaned forward and kissed Keith's right shoulder, on the scar from a blade that sliced it when he was just beginning to find out who he is. A smaller palm reached his side, caressed it softly, while a forehead was leaning on his chest.

“It's okay,” he finally said, and let his arms pull Keith closer. “I trust you.”

Keith finally looked up. “Do you mean - ”

“Yeah,” Shiro smiled.

The violet of Keith's irises pushed back into thinner circles, as his pupils dilated within them. “Are you sure? Even if it's our… first time together?”

A warm smile decorated the taller man's expression. “Yes,” he confirmed. “This is what I want. If it's okay with you.”

Keith nodded firmly. “I - yeah,” he blushed. “Sure.”

With one more kiss shared between their lips, it was Shiro's turn to get rid of his clothes. Keith helped him, instinctively, like he always would with anything else. His hands were delicate against the other one's body as more and more of his skin was exposed. Shiro watched him, as if testing to see his reaction to all of those lighter and darker scars that spread all over him.

But Keith didn't make a sound.

When they both were equally exposed, one in front of the other, a quiet atmosphere settled in the room. For a few moments, all Shiro could hear was his own heart beating faster when the two of them were scanning each other in their eyes, at first too shy to touch.

Shiro felt a sting in his chest. What was Keith thinking when he saw him this way? What if he didn't like what he witnessed? What if -

“You're beautiful,” the whisper cut through his train of thought. Shiro looked up and saw Keith beam with sincerity and kindness. “Christ… So beautiful…” he repeated and pulled Shiro in his arms, just to have their lips reunite in a deep kiss. They squeezed themselves against each other again, and the shorter man pushed him back until they sat together on the bed.

It took a long while for the to part. When they did, a line of saliva hanged between their lips, one that they brushed away with their thumbs. They smiled at each other while blushing.

“Can I ask you something?” Shiro asked rather softly. After Keith nodded, the slightly older man bit his lower lip while thinking how to form the question. “Um… Is it… Is it your first time? In general, I mean?”

Blushing, Keith shook his head. “No. I mean… I - I don't have much experience, but… I did it a few times… You?”

A metal hand tugged gently through the deep brown mullet, grey fingers traveling in between the locks with ease. To Shiro's amusement, the man he loved leaned into the touch like a kitten. “I did it a few times in the past, too,” he confirmed. “But as you can imagine… not recently.”

After a hum and a nod, Keith got off of Shiro to let him turn around. He took the soap bottle that apparently fell on the floor while they kissed before, and stared at Shiro's behind for a moment. Who wouldn't, in that situation? “I ah - I've never -” he muttered and blushed.

“It's okay,” Shiro told him. “Just… Try to apply it. I'll tell you if I need more.”

Gulping, Keith nodded and filled his hand with creamy soap. It was smoother than any other soap he has ever used, colorless and aromatic in a bit of a sensational way. He spread it on his fingers while licking his lips nervously. He couldn't stop the blush that returned to his cheeks, either.

After taking a deep breath, he pressed one wet finger against Shiro's hole. He circled it on his entrance first, and gradually let it get deeper and deeper inside. When he heard Shiro's approving moan, he continued more confidently.

While taking care of Shiro, Keith decided to gather his courage and kissed the curve of Shiro’s bottom, massaging it with his free hand. The louder his lover's breaths became, the more he pushed against the finger inside him. The younger man found it gave him more confidence to try, to dare, and when he thought the time was right, he slid his finger out - only to push back two. He was careful but audacious, trying to make the movements gradually faster and stronger. The entire situation was leaving his as red as the rose from his dream, and as breathless as Shiro was. Hearing his name being called all of the sudden in that begging voice made him feel like his heart would explode.

After adding a third finger and opening Shiro wide and smooth, Keith bit his lip as he felt his stomach getting filled with butterflies. The soap was making the entire area as slick and wet as one can be, and feeling Shiro tremble and move against his touch was much more than satisfying.

“A-ah, Keith… I - I'm ready…” he said and turned around, revealing a flushed face and half closed eyes. His hardness was leaking already. He leaned in and kissed Keith eagerly, making him lie down on his back again while catching the smaller hands above his head.

Their cocks were meeting each other between their bodies, and if Keith’s lips weren’t captured between Shiro's, the moan that escaped him would have been much louder.

“Shiro…” Keith cried, “oh, God… I -”

“Shhh… let me take care of you, love,” Shiro's whisper cut through his words, making him shiver with anticipation. “Let me show you… what the head of Voltron is made of.”

Keith laughed and kissed Shiro some more, his breaths hasty and warm against the larger man's skin. “I didn't know you could be such a flirt,” he hummed, letting his legs run against Shiro’s longer ones.

“I can be… When I want to,” Shiro grinned, and with that, took Keith's cock in his human hand and squeezed his fingers around it, just once - a test. The groan that burst through Keith's throat couldn't sound any sweeter.

He then left Keith and turned to take some soap as well. He spread it on his human palm and, without missing the chance to catch the red paladin’s gaze and smile, he caressed his wet hand up and down the length of his lover's hardness. It continued for a small blessed while, in which the younger man released beautiful sounds of pure satisfaction.

When Keith's slick member swelled and pumped hard enough, Shiro straightened his back. Keith's eyes, dark and half closed, gazed upon him with an undeniable lust. From down there, Shiro looked like a divine creature sent down from heaven.

He swallowed hard. Despite the shadow that Shiro’s figure cast upon him, he felt like his blush was very clear to see. “Are you sure you’re ready?” He made sure though he could barely whisper without trembling.

With a soft nod and a quiet confirmation, Shiro lowered himself on the younger man's tip.

Keith’s breath was caught for a moment.

It was the movement, the deepening, the heat and wetness that made him breathe again, along with releasing some whiny sounds. He did his best to keep it quiet, but only managed to some extent.

It's not his fault that Shiro felt so good.

“Shiro...” he sighed as he felt his palms, that were still resting above his head on the pillow, curl into loose fists. His thighs started moving up and down, ever so softly. The mutual movement helped Shiro settle and eventually fully sit on top of his new boyfriend, and they stopped to let the taller man get used to the feeling inside of him.

The wait wasn't long, though they paused to look at each other again. They smiled rather shyly, and Keith raised his hands to run them against Shiro's chest and sides. He leaned against the prosthetic palm that cupped his cheek.

“You're beautiful,” they told each other simultaneously, and it made them laugh.

Their eyes were still focused on each other when Shiro resumed his thrusts. His smile was so tender, Keith found it hard not to get lost in it - until pleasure took over him again, and his eyelids covered his sight. His own movement renewed automatically, finding Shiro's rhythm with ease and syncing itself to it. When he heard those beautiful moans again, he let himself relax and get a bit loose. He lifted himself a bit faster, a bit harder, and Shiro in return rolled his hips back and forth with more might.

The sounds they made exclusively for each other were still muffled, yet were filled with growing need.

Keith's hands found their way to the other man's sides again, then extended over to his back and pulled him down. There was no resistance, and soon lips kissed lips again, tongue licked tongue, exhales mixed together within heated breaths. The palms that pressed against Shiro's back only a moment ago were now catching his cheeks, then slid to his undercut and kept him as close as possible. In return, the black paladin ran his fingers through Keith's hair, fingers that soon found their way to the back of his neck and settled there.

The kisses stopped when the need for air was stronger.

Shiro rocked himself on top of the younger man, making him moan with a wide opened mouth. Their movements against each other were harmonious, almost in unison, even when the pace was higher.

Shiro … Oh… Ta - Mmm… ! ” Keith moaned more loudly, almost begged, and the sound was nothing less than heavenly in the other's ears. The right hand of the red paladin reached down from the other's neck and cupped Shiro's cock, which was already swollen and wet with precum - and began to stroke up and down its length.

Now was Shiro's turn to become louder.

“Keith! Oh! F- ahh yes ,” he cried, as sparks of pleasure made him quiver. “You're so good… So good - - inside me…”

“Inside you…” the repeat is soft and flooded with sentiment. Without even feeling, Keith's free hand landed on Shiro's behind in a loud slap, squeezing it hard and pressing it down against him.

The best feeling the both of them experienced was when Keith hit Shiro's sensitive spot. “ OH! ” the shout is instinctive, primal, automatic to every direct hit. Without thinking, he leaned his forehead on top of Keith's, needing to find some sort of balance within the ever growing gratification. “Yes! Keith! Baby, I'm - !”

“Me too!” Keith cried in a high pitched voice. The bigger body on top of him slapped itself against him in powerful thrusts ; their rolls and twists all at the same time made him feel electrifying solace.

The only sounds that filled the room were those of rapid breaths, name groaning and thunderous moans, begs and pleads for more. Soon those sounds were speeding, intensifying, I'm almost there, baby, yes, oh, I'm cumming -

Ejaculation spread with an undeniable splashy sound on their stomachs and chests. It came from Shiro, who couldn't help but squeeze his eyes shut as much as he could when the final long orgasmic shout erupted his throat. Keith released both a scream and his cum less than a moment later, and his wetness filled the bigger man up as if their sizes were the same. Their trembling was uncontrollable. The uneven exhales and deep sighs of the end of the action escaped them both.

After the euphoria of release, came an unending peace.

Their hands were finding each other again, and their fingers entwined. A soft pair of grey eyes were searching for the violet ones, only to discover they have been lazily staring back for a while now.

Two smiles shrank into a kiss so tender, that even when a moan resumed every now and again, it was calm and quiet.

Shiro slid off of Keith with a soft sigh and lay beside him. The both of them caught their breaths.

Keith found his smile curling up again when a prosthetic arm encircled his head, metallic fingers fondling his dark locks of hair from behind. He leaned into the touch, loving the warmth it gave him despite being made of foreign material.

He slid his left hand to cup the taller man's cheek, letting his thumb caress over his cheekbone. “Did you have a good time?” he asked in a adoring tone.

Can't help but chuckle, Shiro nodded and pushed himself even closer. “Yeah. I had a great time.” Their bodies were warm against each other, still sweaty and sticky, but for this moment - they didn't mind. “I can safely say it's the best sex I've had in a long time.”

A laughter escaped him. “Me too,” Keith said, blushing. With a burst of courage, he lifted himself up to kiss Shiro's cheek softly, then his forehead, his nose, his chin and the rest of his facial features. Shiro laughed and let Keith continue as much as he wanted, while letting his prosthetic arm fall on the bed underneath the other man's body. Eventually his lips were captured by the red paladin’s, and neither of them could keep their inhales from deepening.

“I hope - that we weren't - too loud, though,” Shiro giggled in between Keith's lips, gladly letting the softening smooches disturb his words. His breath calmed down gradually the lazier the kisses became.

“Even if we were - mm - it's none of anyone else’s business - - babe,” Keith replied. The stubbornness was clear in his hushed tone.

“Well,” the other's cheeks turned red both by the statement and by the nickname. “I - I agree, I mean -”

The younger paladin’s grin seemed somewhat victorious. “Takashi Shirogane is blushing… now that’s a sight I can get used to...“

“Oh, hush,” Shiro chuckled, pushing Keith’s shoulder playfully, only to pull him closer again right away. “You have no idea how happy I am that we're together.”

“I'm happy too…” the reply was sincere and warm, wrapped in a smile that wasn't finding its way to Keith's face often. “You're the most important man in my life, Shiro. You always have been. Finally being with you this way… It feels like a dream.”

“Do you want me to pinch you, to see if it's real?” Shiro joked, and got a pinch on his nose in return. He chuckled with such joy in his throat, that his lover's smile only grew wider.

“Speaking of dreams… I had a dream about you before you came here earlier,” Keith said, the embarrassment clear in his voice.

“Really? What was in it? It was good dream, I hope.” Shiro's eyes lit up with curiosity. Their foreheads almost touched, bodies so close that they were practically on top of each other. They tangled their legs together and pressed one to the other's torso.

“Mm, well…” Keith began, bringing his hand to Shiro's nape and let his fingers circle against the undercut, “we were back on Earth, in a small church… And we… Um…” he laughed and felt his cheeks heaten up - both from the embarrassment and the fear of creeping his new boyfriend out. “N-no, never mind… “

“What? No, please, tell me! You know you can trust me, I won't laugh,” he ensured.

“You promise you won't freak out?”

“I promise.”

Biting his lip for one moment, Keith occupied his gaze with Shiro's beautiful lips. He didn't want to look into his eyes as he felt his shame creeping into his chest, but the lips were much more than a good enough of a sight. “W-well… We - we were getting married. We made our vows in flowers and their meanings… I mean, they grew on our bodies and all around us and brought the church down… And we… Um… yeah. That sums it up, I guess…”

When Shiro didn't reply, Keith felt his lungs tighten. Did he make the wrong choice by telling Shiro? Did he just doom their relationship before it even began?

He did, didn't he? He -

- Suddenly felt a set of thin, warm lips against his. His eyes widened but his body responded accordingly, despite the surprise.

When their lips separated in a gentle sound, he finally gazed into those grey, kind eyes. “So you're - you're not creeped out?” he managed to ask.

Shiro smiled. “Not at all,” he whispered. Human fingers reached the younger one's cheek in such a warm manner, that it made his heart beat in a different kind of a fast pulse. “I think it's endearing… And I'd love that to happen one day.”

Keith released a quiet gasp. “Really?”

“Really,” he beamed. “Once it's all over… Spending the rest of my life with you will be the best case scenario.”

A breathy chuckle burst out of Keith's mouth, along with a few chubby tears that trailed down his cheeks. A set of thumbs, one human and one robotic, wiped them away just before delicately caressing his cheeks.

“I love you, you know that?” Keith finally said again, as if afraid that Shiro didn't catch it.

“And I love y-”

Paladins, please come to the bridge immediately ,” Allura’s voice said through the speakers. “ We have much to discuss before our next mission .”

The two paladins looked down at themselves before their gazes crossed again.

“Shower?” Keith asked.

“Absolutely,” Shiro started to sit up, but then paused. “... Wanna go together?”

Keith's face heated up at the thought, but his nod was firm, as if pleading.

When Shiro smiled and took his hand, he didn't need any other reply.

They went to the bathroom and closed the door. They left a messy room behind them, with a pile of two types of clothes by Keith's bed. Between the soft materials was Keith's utility belt, with its pouches slightly opened from the rush of their previous ministrations. From the left one, two bookmarks made of laminated pressed flowers poked out.

They were two matching bookmarks of two identical red roses, which were left, safe and sound, forgotten until rediscovered, by Keith's side.