The persistent trill of the alarm roused General Hux from sleep. He cracked his eyes open, the sticky rheum that had nearly fused his lids together splitting apart unpleasantly.
“Ughhhhhhh.” he groaned as he raised his head. That was the moment he realized he had fallen asleep at his desk last night.
Back cracking loudly in protest, Hux straightened in his chair. He was still dressed in his uniform, and there was a half filled mug of tarine tea sitting off to the side of his desk. The ‘low charge’ warning light was flashing insistently on his datapad as he had neglected to set it on the recharge unit overnight.
Normally of late, he would awaken in his bed, with the warm and solid bulk of Kylo Ren pressed against his body. The long, strong limbs of the Supreme Leader twined around him; his humid breath gently puffing against Hux’s shoulder; shockingly tender kisses falling upon his neck as a delicate wake up call.
These past few days there had been entirely too many demands on their time, and slipping into each other’s quarters unseen had been impossible. Whatever this was between them - even in his own mind Hux cringed at the word ‘lovers’ - it was new, and along with a physical side there was some sort of bond developing that felt...strangely important and terrifying fragile. In the interest of protecting it, they were careful to not be seen as anything but Supreme Leader and General by the crew.
With an overage of tasks needing his attention and no chance of pleasant distractions, Hux had returned to his quarters last night and settled straight to work. Clearly he had kept at it blindly until he just dropped from exhaustion.
He pushed his chair back and swung his legs out to stand up. One black socked foot squelched horribly into the partially eaten plate of traladon goulash that had been last nights supper. Hux sighed, long and loud, and internally chastised himself for not taking his plate to the kitchenette and instead putting it on the floor.
“Not an auspicious start to the day.” He mumbled to himself, shaking his foot some what clean and stumbling off to the sonic.
Dressed in a fresh uniform, hair firmly gelled into place and a piping hot mug of tarine tea in his grip, Hux exited his quarters and strode toward the bridge.
As he stepped off the turbolift, one of the petty officers was rushing on to the lift, her nose buried in a datapad. Hux tried to sidestep, but he hadn’t seen her in time and she hadn’t seen him at all. So the collision was imminent, and the majority of a mug of gloriously hot tea slopping onto Hux was inevitable.
“Oh! Sir, I am so very sorry!” The poor girl was using her sleeve to try to mop up the tea that was seeping into Hux’s uniform. In fact all she was doing was jostling him and spreading hot tea further across his tunic.
“Petty Officer Solate, it’s fine. Solate, stop.” Hux tried to catch her wrist but she continued her frantic ministrations. “Coudia! Leave it!”
Startled brown eyes met icy green ones, and Officer Solate wisely nodded, snapped off a salute, and vanished into the lift.
With a sigh, Hux proceeded into his office, stepping over the mouse droid who had appeared to sponge up the tea from the floor.
As he closed his door he slumped against it, allowing himself just a moment of misery. The morning had been filled with trivial annoyances that ordinarily would roll off his back. Somehow today they had Hux nearly in tears. It was a strange turn of events.
As he stood there taking breaths and trying to calm himself, an odd sensation came over him. A warm pressure, sliding around his torso, surrounding him. It was not restrictive; he did not feel bound or trapped. Instead it was comforting…familiar. It lasted but a few moments; then the feeling was gone.
Exhaling, Hux was surprised to find himself feeling restored. Undoing the hidden clasps of his tunic, he walked to the small closet where he always had a clean spare tucked just in case.
Mid morning found Hux standing on the bridge, reviewing a course to a nearby planet that was friendly to the First Order. The plan was to venture planetside and meet with the wealthy trade barons. Supreme Leader Ren would attend, his presence certain to help part them from some of their credits. That funding would greatly assist plans to build additional ‘trooper training facilities, produce Ren’s newly designed TIE fighters, and more.
The sudden hush that fell, coupled with the sound of heavy footfalls, let him know that Supreme Leader Ren had just entered the bridge.
At that same moment, the feeling from earlier came over Hux again. Warmth surrounding him, beginning around his shoulders this time like a band, then another looping around his waist. A gentle constriction holding him in place. He felt as if a solid wall was at his back, although there was nothing there at all. It was such a marvelous sensation.
“Sir! Proximity sensors detect incoming Resistance fighters. A small squadron.”
Hux sighed and scrunched up his nose. This day really was determined to be a thorn in his side.
It was quite some time past normal midday meal break by the time the Resistance fighters had been dealt with. Plagued with a stream of bizarre equipment problems, taking out the tiny squadron of x-wing starfighters had been humiliatingly challenging.
Hux sighed and slumped in a very un-General like manner into his office chair. He was hungry, tired, and frustrated. All he wanted was something fit to eat, two fingers of aged Corellian whiskey on ice, and Kylo Ren in his bed tonight.
Opening his desk drawer, Hux pulled out one of the packets of crackers he kept inside for just this sort of emergency. He closed his eyes and sighed as he tore into the bag and popped one into his mouth.
For the third time that day, the mysterious feeling swept over him. From his shoulders, firm weight seemed to come from each side, sliding down and toward his center. They came together at his belly, seeming to meet and join, and softly pressing into him.
It felt strangely like someone was standing behind his chair, embracing him.
‘Yes, did it really take you all day to figure this out?'
Hux flicked his eyes open as he felt rather than heard Kylo Ren’s voice in his head.
‘That has been you? All day? Doing what…hugging me with the Force?’ He thought back, feeling a bit ridiculous.
He could sense laughter through their connection now.
‘That is really the most basic possible way to put it, but essentially, yes. I could feel your tension. You needed something, and physical touch tends to help center you. Unfortunately we cannot reveal our relationship as of yet, so psychic touch had to suffice.’
Hux considered for a few moments, as he finished off the crackers that were going to have to hold him over until dinner. The phantom touching did actually calm him. Obviously a real embrace from his Supreme Leader and soul mate would have been vastly superior in every way. However this could prove to be a useful solution for times when they had to be apart.
‘I liked it. We should experiment a bit more with this.’
Hux suddenly felt stroking on the fly of his trousers. He gasped and thrust a hand down, expecting to find something there, pressing on him. There was nothing.
‘Ren! Are you…ahhhh!’
His voice broke as suddenly he felt his nipples harden beneath his tunic and undershirt. He had a distinct sensation of someone rolling them eagerly between finger and thumb.
‘WHAT are you doing, Ren? Stop please, I am begging you.’
Once more laughter drifted gently across the bond, and the inappropriate touching stopped.
‘Just testing some options, General. Do not worry.’
‘I much prefer to keep those options to the hands on, in person style, if you don’t mind. And speaking of which…work be damned, I must see you tonight. Please?’
Hux felt the phantom bands encircle him again, the psychic version of Ren’s arms.
‘I feel the same, General. Tonight then.’
Reinvigorated, Hux stood. This day was still a disaster, there was no doubt. This evening, however, was looking better and better.