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507. No better place for me

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Richie’s kisses are bruising, desperate, thin lips puckered, and mustache stabbing at Eddie’s cupid’s bow but he doesn’t care. It’d been building and building from the second they saw each other, and although Eddie tried to resist the magnetism by pressing his back firmly against the wall beside the elevator until they could all climb in and go upstairs to their own rooms, Richie held him back by the elbow and said he and Eddie’d get another one, and Eddie’s mouth wasn’t even working enough to object. Maybe because he didn’t want to.

“I missed you,” Richie says between the press of his lips, hand hovering beside Eddie’s head, and the other by Eddie’s hip, along the wall. It’s impossible to ignore the way his tone is begging. Begging for reciprocation like he might not get it even though he’d drowned Eddie with a look, asking for permission, before kissing him, and Eddie had nodded, giving away to it.

“Missed you too, Richie,” Eddie breathes back, pressing just as firmly into the kisses before he finally surges forward at Richie’s responding whimper of a growl, wrapping his arms around Richie’s middle. ‘You’re okay,’ Eddie wants to tell him. Reassure him. As he’s holding Richie together with his body and his arms, because he thinks Richie might just fall apart if he doesn’t.

The kisses slur away from Eddie’s mouth to his cheeks, and jawline, and then Richie’s telling him, “I love you. I’ve loved you, Eddie, and I wanna take care of you.”

It makes Eddie’s heart hammer, as if it weren’t already, and he feels the pulse in his ear drums and in his finger tips, and his knuckles might be white from clutching at Richie’s back. And he realizes, in the back of his mind, that he thinks if Richie’d remembered to hit the button for the elevator once their friends went upstairs, it’d be here by now. But it’s not and it makes him want to shake his head and laugh, but it also makes him want to pull Richie in by his collars and kiss him till they're floating.

“I love you too,” Eddie says, breathy, into Richie’s cheek, with its pretty lines etched there, the corner of his mustache trying to hide some of the age around Richie’s mouth. “I wanna take care of you, too.”

And Richie freezing over him is momentarily frightening, until Richie pulls back with this lost-puppy of an expression, mouth turned down and eyes shaped like teardrops. Incapable of looking Eddie in the eyes, so pressing his forehead into the tip of Eddie’s little nose, so he doesn’t have to... Until Richie says, “You do? Gee, Eds... Never had anyone take care of me before. Sounds like a lotta work...”

Eddie has to swallow something down, but it doesn’t help because his eyes sting at that, and he could tell. He could tell that Richie hadn’t, from the second he saw him.

“I want to, Rich. If you’ll let me?”

“Well sure, pal, if you really want to,” Richie says, finally gathering Eddie up in his arms, but Eddie tenses because it’s not quite where he expected. It’s at his thighs. Richie’s pulling him up by his thighs and Eddie doesn’t even really think about it before he’s moving his arms up around Richie’s neck and letting himself wrap his legs around Richie’s hips.

One of Richie’s hands leaves him momentarily, and Eddie feels it against his back. And a few short seconds of Richie just nuzzling at his earlobe with his nose later, the elevator is opening, and Eddie knows Richie remembered, what Eddie had then forgotten. “Eddie,” Richie says, soft and a little earnest, even though he has something light about his voice, “Wanna take care of me upstairs, in a room, for starters?”

Instantly Eddie’s boiling hot under his suit, the suit that’s stretched because Richie’s holding him the way he is, even as he’s tipping them into the elevator, right up against another wall. Probably for stability, which Eddie appreciates. “Yeah. I do but I’ve never -”

“Me either. Not with - Well, anyway not exactly in a way to go full-throttle, if you know what I mean, are you?”

Eddie squints, then shakes his head. He’s not really... sure he knows what Richie means but that’s as good as any reason to say he’s probably not.

He watches the elevator doors close behind him, and then feels Richie’s open mouth at the corner of his jaw, hot and wet, and making him press his head back against the wall and close his eyes behind his wire-rimmed glasses, probably mussing his blond curls and making them static. He wonders if Richie’s even all here enough to tease him for it, if he is.

I’m in love with you, Eds.”

It’s murmured into his skin, like it’s supposed to be a secret that Eddie wasn’t meant to hear. It clenches at his heart and makes him ache, and clutch tighter around Richie’s middle with his legs, fingertips digging up into Richie’s hair at the bottom of his neck. “I’m - me too, Richie. Forever. Even before I realized it, I was. I promise.”

He promises, because Richie might confuse himself, otherwise. Try to find a reason to rationalize that Eddie doesn’t mean it. So Eddie promises, like they’re saying these things as kids, when a promise means something and you say it with wide open eyes and a solemn duty in your heart to keep it.

Goosebumps rise up on Eddie’s neck, and he’s sure he’s turning red as Richie begins kissing down his neck with fervor, opening his lips, the feel of his mustache gone soft in its prickliness, expected almost, now, but still new and punctuating each and every kiss Richie is leaving on his skin. And then he finds this spot, below Eddie’s ear, and he drags his teeth over it, making Eddie shiver in a way he’s only done at the movies - during horror shows when something stings familiar despite the obscenity of such a thought - makes his hips jut into Richie’s belt buckle, and a little huff of something, a laugh probably, come out from Richie’s nose. But it cuts short when Eddie begins petting at the back of Richie’s head, and says openly, “Right there, Richie... Good boy.”

Words falling from his mouth, and catching in Richie’s skin like they’re made of barbs, and anchoring him down, pressing Eddie even closer to the wall as he begins ravishing his neck, a little whine caught in his throat that Eddie can practically feel there.

“You like that, Richie? Wanna be my good boy? You always have been. Rowdy, but good. No matter what I made you think, you were so, so good. So good I thought about you all the time. Coudln’t get you out of my head, Rich.”

Speaking of when they were kids, of course.

Eddie can’t explain what happened after that, and he doesn’t even think that part of his life exists anymore anyway. But this does. Richie shoving his nose into Eddie’s strained upward neck, and panting against his skin and holding so tightly at Eddie’s thighs like he just can’t get fucking close enough. Eddie’s heart is breaking that this is affecting Richie so much, and yet there’s something proud and molten forming at his hips, and the elevator doors open, and close again, with them clinging to each other and breathing in the air that’s thick with want and love and desperation.

Eventually, Eddie swallows, and is able to say, smoothing Richie’s hair back in a way that makes him meet Eddie’s eyes, “Come on, Richie, be good and let me touch you. Let me make you feel good. Please.”

He doesn’t even know where it’s all coming from. Fantasies, he guesses, Fantasy after fantasy when they were growing up. He doesn’t know how he knows what to do, but he’s going to figure it out. Going to see if what’s in his head actually works in practice. Makes Richie’s breath hitch, and fingers clutch. And he’ll let Richie tell him, what’s good. What’s better. And Eddie’ll take care of him just like he said he would.

Richie nods, looking deep into Eddie’s eyes, before gently lowering him to his feet, and then turns to press their floor button again before the elevator starts moving and invites in unwanted company. First, Eddie catches his hand though, and holds it tight. Lets Richie’s thoughts reel in silence until they’re in Richie’s room and the lights are on, and then Eddie takes his face in his hands, where Richie still looks soft and lost like a little boy, and kisses him sweetly.

“It’s gonna be okay.” Eddie gets to say it, now. And Richie breaks a little more, in his hands, but in a good way that means Eddie can put him back together the right way. Make Richie happy.