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Make Love to Me

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Vince hears the front door open, and is on his feet before his housemate has time to enter the hallway. It had been raining for some time now, heavy burts of pelting hailstones and raindrops tap tap tapping against the lounge window, and Vince feared the worst when Howard had not returned from work when scheduled. But here he is, long russet coat soaked through, the hem of his dark slacks dotted with splash from puddles kicked up by work shoes. Maybe his walk home had taken longer due to the weather, or maybe he was late because more work had been brought upon him, but it didn’t matter.

He is home now, safe, and freezing.

“Sorry for the late return, some new files came through and they demanded I sort through them.”

Howard shucks off his coat, and Vince takes it happily as they make their way down the hallway and back to the lounge where Vince lingered for some time, awaiting the return of his companion.

“Been a long day then?” asks Vince, dipping his head back to look at Howard as he throws his trench coat over the stand to dry, where it’ll still be dripping with rain in the morning when Howard goes to leave again. Vince will complain, and tell him he has many other coats he could wear that won’t give him the plague, but Howard will simply shake his head, and bid him farewell with a soft and tired smile.

Howard hums in approval, and reaches over to brush some hair from Vince’s eyes.

It’s long; longer than any man’s should be but it’s perfectly styled, and he suits it. Suits the pitch black feathering of hair that cascades past his ears and halfway to his shoulders. Suits the grown out fringe that blocks his tame eyebrows, and the awkward length to it. Vince’s hair feels like product: gels and hairspray, but it looks soft as a cloud as Howard runs a finger through the sides to tuck away stray strands of baby hair that Vince still keeps.

Vince’s ears tint scarlet, and he’s fumbling with his hands and searching in his mind for something to say.

But Howard moves to the bookcase, and paces slowly as he searches in their sea of records for something to listen to. His hands linger over a slip, and he’s tugging at the plastic and plucking the vinyl from its casing before taking strides towards their record player.

“Fancy a drink?” Howard offers, back turned to Vince as he runs a finger along the record, and placing the needle down into its grooves.

“When do I never?"

They sip red, Vinces legs drape over the arms of the armchair as Howard pours another glass, and they reminisce on their weeks cases. Noir is in the middle of one of his tales, spilling wine from his glass over his black-clad legs and hoping it doesn’t stain his pristine shirt.

 “Brand’s got a new car, y’know. A ‘49 Austin A90. I’m surprised he can drive, since he’s a bit Mickey Mouse, y’know?”

“That’s no way to talk about your friends, Vince,” Howard laughs gruffly, taking a sip from his glass before sighing heavily.

“They call me a closet case, so I deserve to tell them where to go every once in a while.”

Vince huffs, letting his wine glass hang loose between his fingers as his body hangs lazily across the arms of the armchair, arms behind his head and legs crossed. His shirt lies half unbuttoned, belt discarded to the floor and shoes partnering it.

The vinyl spins a new song, and Vince is slurring the lyrics through wine stained lips.

Take me in your arms and never let me go
Whisper to me softly while the moon is low
Hold me close and tell me what I want to know
Say it to me gently, let the sweet talk flow .”

Come a little closer, make love to me …”

His eyes are fluttering, ice blue falling on Howard, whose hair is curled and messy atop his head, and whose hands trace the rim of his glass with large fingers. Vince sends him a cheeky wink, and Howard chuckles.

“You have no right to call anyone a flooze ever, Vince Noir.”

Vince is rising, shirt draped open and hands letting his glass rest on the floor, legs moving with mock seduction as he drunkenly walks and dances to the soothing tones of Jo Stafford.

Howard’s cheeks resemble the drink he’s staring down at when Vince catches his eye and winks once more.

Kiss me once again before we say good night
Take me in your lovin' arms and squeeze me tight
Put me in a mood so I can dream all night
Everybody's sleepin' so it's quite alright

Come a little closer, make love to me….

Howard doesn’t know where to look; Vince's hips that sway awkwardly but perfectly to the soft sax and brass, or his hands that drag over his chest and click to the beat as he dances in front of his friend. Fingers ghost down Howard’s arm, over his wrist and to his hands, where Vince pulls at him in attempts to get him to loosen up a little.

“C’mon, Howard, dance with me .”

Vince tries for playful, but gets more desperate as he paws at Howard’s shoulders and attempts to pull him up to his feet.  

Howard has never been one for dancing, but no one can resist those icy pools of wonderment that beg for Howard to enjoy himself. The alcohol doesn’t help, only blurring his vision and making his skin numb every time Vince drags his fingers across it.

Before he knows it, he’s on his feet and he’s bobbing awkwardly side to side as Vince chuckles and shakes his hair out.

When you're near, so help me, dear
Chills run up my spine
Don't you know I love you so?
I won't be happy till you're mine.”

Vince sings, and it’s loud and airy and pitch perfect as he struts slow towards Howard, letting a hand run over the elders chest before pushing back against his shoulder. There’s a flame of blue passion in those eyes of his.

When I'm in your arms you give my heart a treat
Everything about you is so doggone sweet
Every time we kiss you make my life complete
Baby doll, ya know ya swept me off my feet.”

It’s like they’ve done this a million times, the way Howard’s arms are supporting Vince’s body as he turns and the younger kicks his legs up, into a very quick dip that leaves Vince's head spinning and a bubble of laughter spilling from his lips.

Howard doesn’t know what he’s doing, dancing with Vince like this. He’s just swaying, and walking back and forth wherever Vince’s hands push and pull him. There’s a hot breath on his face as Vince looks up, humming the next lines all sultry and sweet and Howard is blown away with how innocent the boy could look with a song this blue. There’s a small hand on his chest, one of Vince’s legs brushing against one of Howard’s as Vince drags his middle finger down the elders centre.

Now’s the time to tell you; make love to me...”

Shuddering, Howard chuckles, and fixes a hair on Vince's head.

There’s a saxophone moment, all fluttering notes and perfect melodies and Howard can’t help but to laugh at Vince’s mocking movements, playing his air-sax like nobody's business. He’s all sliding feet and exaggerated arms and dramatic head-swings. He’s so free, and living, so Vince .

Howard is momentarily smitten.

“I won’t be happy till you’re mine.

 When I'm in your arms you give my heart a treat
Everything about you is so doggone sweet
Every time we kiss you make my life complete
Baby doll, ya know ya swept me off my feet.”

Howard is chuckling when Vince exaggerates his movements, hands running up and down his arms and over his chest, making heart shapes with his hands.

“Now's the time to tell you; hey, baby make love to me…”

It’s the last lines, and he’s letting loose, Vince all swivelling hips and shaking his shaggy hair and Howard just waiting for something extravagant.

He gets it, on the last notes of the song when Vince is turning, and falling back into a trust fall with his arms high and poised above his head, and one leg raised with a bent knee and pointed toe. And lucky Howard is catching him with strong arms, the youngests dizzy head landing on a broad shoulder, both laughing and breathing like crazy.

“That felt good .”

Now the record spins, a faint hum and no lyrics, but they don’t move to change it. Vince just stays, head against Howard and large arms around his middle as he recovers from all of the frolicking he just participated in. Howard is chuckling, and helping him to his feet.

“More wine?"

“Yes please.