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“...You're not gonna wear those all afternoon, are you?” Noctis asked, trying to appear deadpan but unable to fight the tug of a grin on his face as he hefted his over-packed tote bag onto his shoulder.

“You don't think they look good?” Prompto asked with a brief pout, fiddling with the bunny-ear headband he had been wearing during his morning shift at the chocolate shop, an eye-catching Easter marketing device for all of the staff. Noctis had waited outside for him to finish his shift, and Prompto had spent the last twenty minutes trying not to explode with affection as he watched his boyfriend's attempt to lurk unobtrusively outside. The day was sunny and brisk, and now sharp, warm breezes buffeted them randomly.

“I didn't say that,” Noct corrected him, giving one of the stiff white ears a playful tweak.

“Heh, I'm already dating the hottest guy in the world. I don't need any more attention,” Prompto chuckled, self-consciously removing his headband and eyeing the passers-by who were in turn eyeing the Prince and his friend. Although Noctis wore his baseball cap and baggy civilian clothes and looked to all intents and purposes a normal teenager from a distance, his face was not so easily hidden. Even if he hadn't been royalty, his masculine yet delicate features were more than enough to routinely draw envious or enamoured gazes. As usual, Prompto felt undeserving and inadequate, and he now fought to banish his depressive thoughts before they could take root in his consciousness and ruin his day.

Fiddling with the headband, Prompto slung his satchel over his shoulder and abruptly squeaked when he suddenly found warm skin and cool hair in his face, immediately followed by the sweet burn of Noct's lips against his mouth. He vaguely heard a distant wolf-whistle, belatedly identifying it as emitting from his boss within the shop, a plump and spunky middle-aged woman. She gave him a wink and a thumbs-up, and he groaned in dismay and ducked his head, shyly absorbing the Prince's laughter beside him.

“Cute,” Noctis stated laconically, ruffling Prompto's hair. “Ready for our date?”

Relaxing a little, Prompto nodded, flashing a bright and cheesy grin. “Been looking forward to this for ages!”

Whilst 'ages' may have been a slight exaggeration, it was true that they had not had as much time together recently as they would have liked, in spite of the fact that they were living together. Noctis was kept at the Palace late nearly every day, usually staggering in, guided by Ignis, at 11pm or later. He would eat a perfunctory meal, and then collapse into bed with his boyfriend, more often than not too exhausted to instigate anything sexual, though he always made sure to retrieve his goodnight smooch and snuggle. Prompto would coo at him soothingly and play with his hair, and he in turn would massage the blond's back and shoulders, giving him endless tiny kisses and nuzzling him with his nose.

Prompto's hours at the store had officially increased, due to his reliability, his sales acumen, and the simple fact that everybody, staff and customers alike, loved him. He, too, found himself AWOL on the most unfortunate occasions, most often on one of Noct's rare days off. To his relief, Noctis hadn't suggested that he give up his job, which he loved. He supported him whole-heartedly and was (often embarrassingly) vocal about how proud he was of him. But the current situation had sadly led to less-than-ideal levels of intimacy.

Now, Noctis took his hand and started to lead them away, raising his free hand to his forehead to shield himself from the watery but powerful springtime sun.

“You could just wear your baseball cap the right way round,” Prompto suggested with a wry smirk.

The Prince opened his mouth briefly to retort, and then relented with a mirroring smirk and a glare, twisting his hat so that the brim would actually do its job.

“You're too smart for your own good.”

“Maybe you're just dumb,” Prompto suggested with airy innocence. He chuckled hysterically as Noctis attacked him with savage tickles, and he held up both arms in defence.

“Domestic abuse right here!” the blond cackled, as the Prince finally ceased his assault, beaming at him.

“Guess the date's off then,” Noctis shrugged as they wandered down the street, adjusting the heavy bag on his shoulder with a small grunt.

“You wouldn't do that. Who's gonna eat all the vegetables that I know are in that cooler?” Prompto pointed out, gesturing to the heavy plastic cooler he could see nestled within the tote bag, amongst a picnic blanket and other things.

“Eh, I'll get a pet rabbit or something. It is Easter after all,” Noctis snorted. Prompto tutted loudly, grabbing his hand and jostling him fondly with his shoulder.

“You're an asshole,” he pouted.

“Yeah. But you love me, right?” Noctis turned his face, flashing a rare, bright grin, his eyes narrowed sweetly with happiness.

“Right,” Prompto sighed, rolling his eyes extravagantly and trying hard to look weary and downtrodden by the fact. However, trudging down the street hand-in-hand with the Prince, the sun shining warmly and their long-awaited date imminent, he found it very difficult to maintain his petulance.

 

~*~*~

 

“I thought you said the weather was gonna be nice?” Prompto asked playfully, as they entered the vast park, each hefting their bags anew over their shoulders and taking a short few seconds to survey the flat, extensive grounds. The royal park housed a few small lakes and ponds, two fountains, and miniature patches of woodland here and there. A few quaint food stalls and a gift stand also made their home here. Everything was maintained to perfection, the grass always short and vibrant, the trees neat and healthy, and not a single piece of litter to be seen. It was never completely empty, but the cooler weather ensured that the sun-worshippers and tourists were at a minimum this afternoon.

“Uh...well it was kinda sunny this morning, I thought it'd be okay, so I didn't check the forecast,” Noctis admitted, raising his eyes to the still-bright sky which was swiftly being encroached upon from the south by a gurgly, grey, vengeful-looking cloud bank. “There's plenty of trees, right? We should be fine.”

“I'm not complaining,” Prompto chuckled, as they began the trudge across super-short grass with no particular destination in mind. “I've only been here a few times. Never really explored it properly, you know? It's so huge.”

“We'll find a little nook somewhere. We'll be okay,” Noctis turned to him, giving him an ostensibly confident grin and his best sultry wink.

“Hope you packed a towel,” the blond teased, as a shudder of dormant thunder sounded overhead. Both teenagers unconsciously altered their direction and began heading towards a plump thicket of evergreen trees in the far distance.

 

~_~_~

 

By the time they were settled under an ancient and bedraggled-looking fir tree, whose spiny branches were providing surprising protection despite their slightly feeble appearance, the heavens had well and truly opened. The effect on the teenagers was minimal however, the vast evergreen was allowing only the most occasional cold raindrop to filter through to them, and they were fairly snug under its sprawling branches, nestled between two of its large, erupted roots.

The picnic blanket was spread on the bare ground, and the boys were nudged tight against each other, rummaging through the cooler and setting out their provisions, with Prompto needling the Prince affectionately.

“I can see the Gigantoads coming out,” the blond stated flatly.

“It isn't that wet out there,” Noctis tried, though he gazed out at the chilly sizzle of grey rain and fog despondently, pulling off his baseball cap with a sigh. The few visitors they had seen earlier had vanished like so much mist in the breeze, and the previously-bright sun was paddling in pigeon-grey, soaking clouds.

“It is that wet. I can see a new lake forming. You get to name it, since it's a royal park.”

Noctis made a show of giving it serious deliberation. “...I'll call it 'Prompto is a Dickhead' Lake.”

“Bit of a mouthful.”

“Like its namesake,” Noctis mumbled, opening tupperware containers and blushing as soon as he realised what he had said.

Prompto paused, and then jostled him, cackling. “Was that a dick joke? I'm flattered, by the way.”

“I didn't mean it like that,” the brunette attempted.

“You're not wrong, though.”

“Are we seriously having a dick competition at a picnic?” the Prince asked, looking faintly bereaved.

“Pft, no competition. After all, there's only one real competitor,” Prompto winked, prodding a thumb against his own chest and looking pleased with himself.

“Do you want this free food or not?” Noctis grumbled, letting the blond coo and fuss over him apologetically, though it was clear Prompto was still tickled by his unspoken victory.

“Aw Noct, sorry. Sorry I have a bigger dick than you. Thanks for the picnic!”

“Definitely Dickhead Lake,” Noctis mumbled, though he huffed a small laugh when Prompto gave him a hard, messy kiss on the cheek.

 

~*~*~

 

“I don't even know what this is,” Noctis confessed. “Ignis suggested it when I said I was gonna set up a picnic.”

Prompto glanced over at the tub of yellow grains mixed with herbs and vegetables that the Prince had just opened and was now frowning at. He sniffed appreciatively at the mouth-watering spicy scent.

“Dude, that's couscous. It's like tiny pasta.”

“Ah.” Noctis replied, looking unconvinced. He watched his boyfriend scoop up a plastic sporkful of the 'tiny pasta,' and was briefly mesmerised by the look of orgasmic bliss on his face as he chewed.

Noooct. So good. Have some, go on.”

Swayed, the Prince tried a mouthful, and hummed with interest. “...Yeah...kinda nice.”

The blond chuckled, and snuggled even closer to him. Despite the bone-soaking rain beyond their shelter, the temperature was not particularly cold, and he moved nearer to appreciate Noct's proximity, rather than his body heat.

“You really would be happy living on nothing but fries, wouldn't you,” the blond teased.

“And soda. And chocolate,” Noctis pointed out, raising a finger.

“The princeliest of diets!”

They had demolished a good deal of the food, various small tubs of omelette, meat and cheese, salad, breadsticks, veggies and dips, and bottles of iced tea. Now, they picked at the fruit – Noctis fished out and munched on anything that was red, whilst Prompto was happy to graze on the offending remnants.

Before long, they sat back, sighing and leaning in close to each other once again. Now that their hands had no extraneous tasks, they twined their fingers loosely and were content to watch the perpetual sheets of drizzle, and listen to the clatter of precipitation on the dense branches above them.

“Don't go to sleep,” Prompto warned the Prince, just as Noctis was thinking that he could absolutely nap right now.

“Ahh, why not? I've eaten and I'm cosy. It's basically guaranteed at this point.” the brunette shrugged, resting his head upon his boyfriend's shoulder and sighing peacefully. His hair, as fine as it was, felt very slightly damp, having absorbed some of the moisture from the cool air.

“...I'll give you half an hour. Okay?” the blond offered, his voice soft as he spoke into Noct's silver-black hair.

“Sorry. You know how it is with me. And I was working till ass o' clock last night,” he reminded him.

“Ass o' clock is the new midnight,” Prompto laughed musically, hooking his arm around Noct's torso and hugging him lightly. “Go for it. I want you to have lots of energy when we get back home,” he said with airy insouciance.

He felt Noctis tense a little and seem to become even more silent, the better to absorb any possible suggestion of later explicit activities.

“Sleep now, dude. I'll tell you my plans later. Let's just say you've been working super hard, and I wanna do something special for you for being so good and so awesome. Sweet dreams,” Prompto grinned, giving him a quick squeeze, and giggling gently at the small, tight groan of frustration that vibrated into his shoulder.

 

~*~*~

 

Chapter Text

Noctis assumed that it was raindrops filtering through his sleep, waking him with cool little tickles on the tip of his nose. His mundane dream ebbed away into instant amnesia, and he blinked under his closed eyelids, absorbing the dichotomous warmth and chill of his surroundings.

He resisted waking up for several long and splendid minutes, feeling blissfully peaceful, untroubled, and comfortable. It was only when a musical chuckle near his face startled him, that he opened his bleary eyes, instantly wincing and groaning at the brightness.

“Sorry! You were making me laugh, making these cute little sounds. And then I kissed your nose and you kinda squeaked.”

Noctis peered sideways at his boyfriend, the source of heat in the surrounding damp coolness of the park. He was nestled tight against him, and remarkably there was a not a single point of discomfort in his whole body. He was still reasonably dry, though he could feel that his hair had a spiderweb-like dusting of dew upon it.

“That was awesome. You make the best nap spot.”

“Just doing my job,” Prompto beamed, giving him a squeeze, and finally adjusting himself. The blond urged out an elaborate groan of pain, and then chuckled some more. “My ass is dead. I haven't moved in half an hour.”

Noctis got onto his feet with a slight stagger, his knees clicking, and he held out a hand to aid his partner. “Let's go home. I'll fix you up. I'm the world expert on your butt.”

“That's not...untrue, I guess,” Prompto sniggered, picking up his satchel and handing Noctis the tote that he had managed to re-pack with carefully-slow movements whilst the Prince slept. “You feel more rested?”

“As rested as I ever feel,” Noctis smirked, the mere thought of the sentence making him want to yawn. He surveyed the park, still washed-out and wet, the April rain falling steadily, and the absence of any other people still notable.

“Good. 'Cos it might be a long night. I've got tomorrow off and I am totally making up for lost time with you,” Prompto nodded, trying to sound confident, but betrayed by the peachy glow of his embarrassment, stark in the cold palette of the afternoon. “You're, uh, you're still free until tomorrow evening, right?”

“Maybe even longer, if Iggy decides to stop martyring himself and take a day off. I think I managed to persuade him. There's a farmer's market thing he's been dying to get to, and we've both been crazy busy. I told him we'd both crash and burn if we didn't ease up a bit.”

“But what you were really thinking was, 'damn, I haven't been able to bone Prom in ages. Let's tell Iggy to go fancy food shopping and maybe he'll bring back something that isn't vegetables.'”

“...Now that,” Noctis replied, his eyebrows raised and his grey-blue eyes gleaming with amusement, “is uncanny.”

He rewarded his perceptive boyfriend with a tender, lingering kiss on the mouth, and they smooched for long seconds under the brittle fir before sharing sweet laughter, and beginning to make their way home.

 

~*~*~

 

It became very apparent on their walk home that Noctis was unusually horny. Neither of them was particularly averse to public displays of affection, often holding hands or hugging in the street, even exchanging quick kisses if there weren't too many people around. But Noctis was being demonstrably handsy, his palm settled selfishly on the small of his boyfriend's back, drifting down frequently to give his ass a rough squeeze. The first time he did it, Prompto had nearly suffocated on his own surprise, letting out a feeble little shriek. Anytime on the journey that they had to wait to cross a road, the Prince nuzzled in close to him, kissing at his hairline and whispering praise and promises in his ear in his huskiest tones. Despite nursing a fine and fiery blush all the way to their street, the blond didn't chastise him or try to ward him off.

Their apartment building was tall and elegant, but not extravagant or even particularly notable in the affluent neighbourhood, which was a boon for security. As the building came into sight, Prompto dared to glance at his partner, and jolted in shock when he met grey-blue eyes boring hungrily into his own. The things Noctis had been whispering to him had been growing increasingly lewd and explicit as they neared their home.

“Uh...you can hang on for another five minutes, right?” Prompto asked with a nervous chuckle, moaning softly when Noct's hand once more groped his backside, staying there and pushing gently to shepherd him in the direction of home.

“Don't test me,” the Prince warned, speeding up his pace and herding Prompto swiftly to the heavily-guarded front door and glassy foyer.

 

~_~_~

 

Prompto was stunned when he found himself seized in Noct's tight arms and pushed down to the hardwood floor as soon as the apartment door had slammed behind them. They had managed to behave in front of the security guys and make their way to the top floor without incident. They reached their door and the hapless blond struggled to open it, as Noctis had pressed up against his back with obvious intent and a rock-hard erection digging sharply into his coccyx.

“Come on Prom,” the Prince had growled into his ear, grinding into his backside crudely. “Wanna suck you.”

“Oh, fucking hell,” came the weak and breathy reply, as the door finally accepted the key and code, and swung inwards to their dimly-lit living area, Noctis having left the blinds closed that morning.

Now, Prompto gurgled in surprise and pleasure as Noctis humped against him violently a few times, growling at him, and then wriggled down his body to start ripping at the buckle of his belt. The only sounds in the warm penthouse were laboured, sticky breathing and the dull thumps of Noct's elbows on the hardwood floor as he worked.

“Noct...ah, shit,” Prompto wheezed, his face burning and his head throbbing like he was suffering vertigo again. His limbs tingling and his heart punching against his narrow ribcage, he watched with dazed awe as Noctis yanked open his belt, nudged his button open with a rough thumb and pawed everything else out of the way to reach his goal.

The Prince used his last vestige of gentleness to pull out his boyfriend's stiff and sticky flesh without catching him on the open zip of his jeans, and sighed blissfully at the blood-heat pulsing in his grip. Parting his pale lips, his jaw cracking, Noct promptly wolfed him down, forcing the salty meat down his throat and swallowing reflexively, fiercely deep-throating him.

The blond hissed and sat up on his arms, the bone of his elbows digging into the hardwood and becoming distantly painful. He watched with guilt and fascination as Noct's eyes winced and immediately watered in concentration and the brunette made tiny gulping, strained noises around him, face reddening. Noctis had gone down on him like this before, and what he admittedly lacked in any real skill he made up for with dogged, single-minded determination. In the past, upset at the pain that Noctis was putting himself through for him, Prompto had begged him to lay off, tried to physically force him from his cock. Every time, he had been snappishly, almost viciously told to be quiet, and the tear-stained glare he had received had warned him to shut up and allow Noctis to do his self-imposed duty.

Prompto gritted his teeth and let his head fall back, panting at the dizzying feeling of the ribbed, strangling heat of Noct's wet throat rhythmically crushing him every time the Prince had to swallow. Whilst his unusual sensitivity could be an issue when pressure was focussed too long in one place, when he was fully sheathed in Noct's throat or inside him, the dispersion of pleasure over the whole of his shaft was just enough to be not only bearable but enjoyable. Now, his fingers clawed at the floor and his thighs jerked with the effort of not moving, of not making this any more difficult for his lover.

Prompto heaved out an exhale of relief a minute later as he felt the brunette suddenly pull off. No matter how incredible the sensations were, the thought of Noctis suffering for his labours was not worth it.

The Prince's face was dusky-pink, his eyelashes spiderwebbed with tears and his cheeks and chin glistening-wet in the gloom.

“Don't hold back,” Noct croaked, not bothering to wipe his face, and his eyes searingly-intense despite their bleary redness. “Fuck me.”

“Oh jeez...Noct, it feels good, but I really hate- ”

“Do it for me. I want you to come. Please,” Noct added, a rarely-uttered and delightfully husky plea.

The blond sighed in resignation, nodding, brows furrowed. “This is the last time though,” he said bravely.

The Prince looked surprised, his watery eyes wide and questioning. “I...okay. Last time.”

This time, Noctis took demonstrably more time and care, in order to try and soothe his anguished partner. He opened his jaw and sank down over Prompto once again, gulping him down with clamping swallows and almost-disturbing groans and sticky, choking noises. For his own sanity, Prompto laid down fully, closed his eyes, and refused to move. He nearly broke and called out for a complete stop when he felt a hot tear plop from Noct's face onto the trembling skin above his cock.

When, long minutes later, Prompto reached a climax that was hard-fought for both of them, the scream that tore from him was more one of reprieve than pleasure; the squeezing, stinging pulse of orgasm a shallow scratch that hurt rather than a deep bruise that throbbed and swelled and could be massaged to satisfaction. Noctis held onto his writhing hips for an anchor and swallowed everything, his breaths by now a manic sort of hyperventilation. Noct's entire face, and Prompto's entire crotch, were wet with tears and saliva.

The Prince finally sat up with a growl at the ache in his spine. Falling back on his knees, his chin was soaked and his expression frantic but peaceful, like a carnivore that had just delivered the killing bite. He grinned breathlessly down at his lover, who had an arm across his face, with the sort of unfettered victory that wasn't even seen after one of their record-breaking winning streaks at the arcade.

Fuck yes,” the Prince wheezed with infinite smugness, laughing brightly and finally smearing his sleeve across his wet face. “You're seriously not gonna let me do that again?” he teased, his voice notably raw and hoarse from his efforts. He gave himself a crude grab through his jeans, palming the erection that was as rampant as ever. With a little chuckle, he reclined exhaustedly beside his partner on the floor, tapping the freckled forearm that covered Prompto's face and then giving his torso a playful hug.

When he heard the unmistakable snuffle of a sob, Noctis' heart sank like a stone, his smile vanished and his hands started urgently shaking and caressing his boyfriend's body.

“Prom? Talk to me,” he demanded in a panic, his voice unusually loud, eyes cold with worry.

The blond rolled away from him, rubbed at his own tearful eyes angrily, and then sat up, sucking in a couple of grounding, sticky breaths.

“Sorry,” came the small murmur.

“Don't do this to me Prom, what is it? Was it me? Ah...fuck,” Noct whispered to himself, realisation dawning.

“It's just...I wish you'd stopped, is all. It's fine, really,” Prompto shrugged, totally unconvincingly. “But I...when I hear you all choking and you can't even breathe...it feels nice...down there,” he tried to illustrate, flinging a hand gesture down towards his still-bare and damp crotch. “But not...here,” he shrugged again, tapping the hand to his chest briefly and then bowing his head in embarrassment, audibly swallowing another threatening, vast sob. “I tried to get you to stop the other times too, but you're so damn stubborn...”

Noctis moved forward to wrap his arms around him from behind, the blond still determined to face away and hide his upset. “I'm so...so sorry, Prom. I had no idea. I swear, I just...wanted you to feel good. Don't cry, please?”

“M'not,” the blond muttered, sniffing mightily and wiping his face again, looking down and assiduously doing his jeans back up, his entire body quivering faintly.

“What can I do?” Noctis asked, letting go of him, fingernails digging half-moon dents into his own palms as he fretted.

“Don't do it again,” Prompto said quietly, finally getting to his feet, looking tired. Noctis hurried to follow suit, grabbing him in a tight hug as soon as he was standing, and pressing a hard, almost violent kiss into his partner's hair.

“I won't. I promise. I know I was kinda forceful. I thought......well, never mind what I thought. Are we okay?” he asked tentatively, words melting hotly against Prompto's scalp.

“Yeah. I'm the one being a complete loser, crying all over the place,” the blond sighed miserably, nuzzling into Noct's warm neck and breathing him in for comfort. “Mood's dead, huh,” he added, with a short and choked laugh.

“I'm happy if you're happy, Prom. I mean that, one hundred percent. I love you more than anything. You know that, right? More than picnics or sex and any of that stuff,” the Prince murmured, rocking him slowly where they stood.

“...More than video games?” Prompto asked, his voice tinged with playful curiosity.

Sensing the mood lightening and his boyfriend's spirits mercifully rising, Noctis nodded. “Yup.”

“Even Assassin's Creed?”

“Even Assassin's Creed.”

“...More than chocolate?” Prompto's voice was stronger now, sweetened with happiness.

“...Hmm...you're both tied at the top spot.”

“Guess that's the best I could hope for,” Prompto shrugged resignedly, finally pulling back and grinning at Noctis with a tear-stained, flushed, but beautiful face. The Prince sighed and ran a pale hand down his face, knuckles tender against a high cheekbone and freckled jaw.

Always talk to me. Tell me when I'm being a spoiled brat, okay? The last thing I want is to hurt you. Promise me now,” he asked gently.

The blond sighed and nodded, eyes down.

“Properly,” Noctis insisted, raising his right hand and extending his little finger.

“Pinkie promise? Seriously?” Prompto asked with a musical chuckle, though he mirrored the action immediately, hooking Noct's finger with his own. “Okay. Promise, dude.”

“Good,” Noctis sighed, relieved. He pushed a salty kiss to Prompto's mouth and was thrilled to feel the instant, loving response, the blond's hand rummaging in his own silver-black hair.

“Now that the BJ crisis is over, how about we get cleaned up and then see what I can do for you, huh?” Prompto asked after he pulled back and winked.

The Prince frowned, concerned that now Prompto was forcing himself out of some misguided devotion. “You don't have to do anything for me. We can just chill.”

“Like you said, Noct,” the blond assured him, taking his hand. “I want you to feel good. This evening was my idea, and I still wanna make you happy. I wanted to get busy with you tonight and nothing's changed. I won't do anything I don't want, and I trust you to tell me to stop as well. Okay?”

“...I'm worried I'm gonna upset you again,” Noctis admitted.

“You won't. We've been having sex for ages, right? And this is the first time something hasn't gone as planned! I'd say that's normal. Hell, we're doing pretty well.”

“Just...don't act like everything's fine if it's not, alright? I know you too well, Prom,” Noctis warned him, affectionately but not without a real core of concern.

“Yeah, I know. That's my weakness,” Prompto agreed, laughing. “Come on, let's have a shower. And then if we wanna make out we can. If not, not. Deal?”

Noctis liked the sound of that. “Deal.”

“Oh, and Noct?” Prompto continued, leading them both through the dim, warm, silent apartment towards the bathroom.

“Mm?”

“I love you more than anything too.”

He chuckled as the hand holding his gave a powerful squeeze in response.

 

Chapter Text

Prompto sighed gustily as they exited the bathroom, a beaming grin on his face.

“You look better,” Noctis teased him gently, nudging his heat-damp bicep. They both had towels slung about their narrow waists, Noct's jet black, Prompto's a pretty pale turquoise. Heading back to the couch in front of the massive wallscreen TV, their favourite place in the apartment, they crashed down and tangled their limbs vaguely, snuggling up whilst Noctis fumbled for the remote. Turning on the vast flatscreen, it buzzed silently into life and the brunette spent a few minutes locating a sci-fi movie that he put on in the background, the volume low.

“I feel fine. Sorry about earlier,” Prompto nodded sheepishly, bumping his forehead gently against Noct's and cuddling into him.

“No apologies, I told you. I was in the wrong,” Noctis reassured him again, dragging fingers through smooth, damp blond hair that was now the colour of wet sand.

“...You still wanna do something?” Prompto asked coyly, his high cheekbones flushed coral pink and his eyes bright with muted excitement.

“Only if you want,” Noctis grinned, giving him an affectionate kiss. They had gotten through the shower without incident, Noct's own erection having rapidly deflated after the trauma of seeing his boyfriend cry. Right now, however, he couldn't hold back the tight groan in his throat when Prompto snaked his hand under Noct's towel and carefully took hold of him.

“I want,” the blond replied softly, his fingers cool on the warm flesh nestled under the towel. “I had all these crazy plans but right now I kinda want to just go sweet n' slow, you know?” he chuckled, and the sound and sight of his amusement made Noct's heart clench in adoration.

“Let's make love, then,” the Prince offered, mirroring the blond's grin, and then sighing again when Prompto gave his rapidly-engorging shaft a teasing squeeze.

“I wanna go to bed, though. We already spend way too much time on this couch,” the blond insisted playfully.

“I like this couch,” Noctis pouted, only half-jokingly.

“Yeah, but if we start getting busy here and I fall off and hurt myself I'll be crying again.”

“Please don't,” Noctis laughed, disengaging from his boyfriend and standing, taking Prompto's hand and helping him up. “I hate seeing you cry.”

“I know,” the blond nodded, smiling bashfully. “Come on, dude.” He tugged the Prince's pale hand and they made their way silently across their apartment, pulses elevating and breaths already shallow with anticipation.

 


 

Prompto found himself on the receiving end of a massage, and he wasn't complaining one bit.

Laying in the middle of their monolithic bed, his head turned and nearly buried in a fat black pillow, he sighed luxuriantly, eyes lightly closed and his naked body caught between the boneless lassitude of relaxation, and the taut excitement of having his equally-naked boyfriend's hands pressing and probing and manipulating him. His mouth was slightly open, mostly to enable him to breathe in the confines of the deep, dense pillow, and he distantly heard himself keening out croaky little sighs and long hums of satisfaction.

“...Noct, you're the best,” came the bleary, airless sigh of pleasure, muffled by the pillow.

The Prince, straddling Prompto's bare backside and using his own body weight to apply delicious pressure to the blond's upper back, sniggered happily. He smoothed his hands out across his partner's ribs, pushing down his sides and stretching aching muscles that were rarely pampered in this way, and Prompto shuddered, letting out a tiny 'oh' of surprised bliss.

“Want you to feel good,” Noctis murmured back, his words half promise, half private hope.

“S'working,” Prompto slurred, sighing happily into the pillow and groaning.

Noctis licked his lips, used his left forearm to try and nudge back his long, fine hair from his eyes. His room was as gloomy as usual, lit only by a heavy corner lamp, and the temperature was perfectly cool, one window cracked open and the relentless patter of light rain performing its own massage on his large windows. He adjusted himself silently upon Prompto's backside, his cock swollen with patient excitement, his own weight creating a buzzing pressure between his legs that was becoming hard to ignore.

He wasn't using any kind of oil, merely pushing and pressing as best as he could, trying to avoid dragging the blond's freckled skin. Leaning down, he indulged himself by kissing up his partner's spine, pecking lovingly at his warm skin, and then smirking and biting down gently upon the nape of his neck like a rutting lion. Prompto flinched and chuckled into the pillow, squirming.

“Yeah, okay, we can stop now,” he acquiesced to Noct's unspoken suggestion.

“Phase two,” Noctis laughed softly, getting off of his boyfriend and watching him sit up, a look of peace on his face.

“Aw yeah. Noooct, that was perfect. I'm gonna start not-so-subtly asking for massages from now on.”

The Prince shrugged in the dim light, not taking the bait. “Whatever you want.”

Prompto lay on his back now, easing onto the firm mattress with a shallow sigh. “C'mere, dude.”

“You keep calling me 'dude.' So romantic,” Noctis teased, laying down as carefully as he could on top of Prompto, and allowing himself to be pulled into a tight, two-armed hug, his mouth immediately sought out by thin, pretty lips and promptly gifted with noisy little suckles and nips.

Prompto muttered his reply in between kisses. “I've been calling you 'dude' for years, you can't expect me to stop now...”

Noctis huffed a laugh and kissed back, luxuriating in these fleeting moments before things got heated. Before long, tender pecks and delicate caresses would devolve into their atavistic counterparts - sharp bites and frantic clawed hands.

On this occasion though, many minutes later, they reached almost the point of penetration without ever falling into a chaos of lust. Though their composure was intact, it was utterly strained, and they kissed slowly but feverishly, hands restrained but visibly shaking with the effort of desire as they ground hard against each other, soaked in sweat and their breaths seething in sticky, febrile gusts.

Noct had three lubricant-glossed fingers deep inside Prompto, who was pushing back against him in long, grinding movements, his mouth open and his brows creased tightly. The blond felt dizzy with the steaming heat of their bodies in the gloom, and the ache of anticipation in his blood and bones.

“Noct, please, come on, fuck,” he muttered, before sucking in a sharp inhale, those few words exhausting his weak and shallow breaths.

“......Kay,” the Prince finally agreed, removing his slippery, heat-wrinkled fingers and shaking his head to attempt to flick the sweat-wet hair from his hazy eyes. A few soaked tendrils still spidered into them, and he used the back of his hand to smear his face, panting wheezily.

“Get...get in my lap.” Noctis surprised Prompto with this request, but the blond obliged immediately. The brunette was sitting back on his heels in the middle of the bed, and now he used his hands to wordlessly usher and tug the blond to sit astride him. It took a few seconds of breathless adjustments and a couple of accidental slips, but Prompto soon managed to sink down upon Noct's solid cock, hissing through his teeth at the relief of the tight, stretched burn.

“Okay? Prom?” Noctis asked urgently, desperate for confirmation of Prompto's consent after his earlier dreadful mishap. His arms hooked tightly around the blond's back, absorbing the pleasured shivers of his partner.

“Yeah...shit Noct, hurry up, I'm...” Prompto trailed off, hanging his head and dampening Noct's shoulder with his wilted blond hair.

“You're in control,” the Prince whispered back, though he gratified his boyfriend once by lifting Prompto's heavy, sweat-slick hips and pulling him back down gently, giving his own slow thrust at the same time. The stab of arousal he felt at Prom's resultant gasp of delirium was almost enough to send him over the edge, but he heaved out a few calming exhales and waited for Prompto to continue at his own pace.

The visibly-exhausted blond started moving on his lap, the shaky, rhythmic rise and fall of his hips nowhere near fast enough to be described as bouncing. The blood-hot pressure of Prompto's body squeezed Noctis agonisingly, a painfully-slow stimulation made unbearable by the soft, high-pitched pleas of his partner, the sobs of laboured breaths against his neck.

The Prince snaked one hand down to take hold of Prompto and loosely stroke his sensitive shaft, but the blond instantly flinched and pushed his hand away.

No, shit...too much...I can come like this,” the blond assured him, sucking in sharp, needy breaths as he sped up a little, gritting his teeth and growling at the ache in his hard thigh muscles. “Shit, fuck Noctis,” he seethed, throwing his head back and literally gasping for air.

The brunette keened, overwhelmed at the sight and scent of Prompto's sheened skin in front of him, the throb of his frantic pulse in a slim throat and the tiny, jerky noises he was emitting. He shifted his legs and cupped one hand around Prompto's shoulder, the other clamped around one prominent hipbone, and finally began thrusting in earnest.

Over the next couple of minutes the blond's hands slipped and scratched at his perspiring back, his voice croaking out brusque, wordless noises. Soon, a sharper, panicked sound heralded a denouement, the contractions of Prompto's pleasure abruptly grew crushingly-tight around Noct's cock, and the Prince could only hope, as his own sweat rolled down his forehead and stung his eyes, that Prompto was near his peak.

Only seconds later, his partner's breath seemed to halt, and a strangling silence ensued for several seconds as the blond tightened like a vice, shuddered with almost-disturbing violence, and then screamed, a gush of hot liquid spattering Noct's abdomen and trickling down to soak their conjoined bodies.

Noctis' husky voice broke at seeing and feeling Prompto's orgasm. Pushing up brutally hard inside his boyfriend, he bit down at the salty skin of Prompto's shoulder, and sobbed pathetically as he suffered through his own climax, shivering and panting and trying his best to punch out his aftershocks to reach complete satisfaction. Prompto was already lax and weak, a dead weight upon him by the time the last swollen pulses rocked out of his system; he felt his own seed pool about his deflating flesh as he pulled out as gently as he could whilst supporting the blond's heavy body. They both made small noises of discomfort and vague disgust at the sensation of lukewarm, musky wetness all over their crotches and bellies, but upon meeting each other's sheepish and shattered gazes, they managed a shared dirty giggle from throats that were hoarse with overuse.

Noctis extended one shivering arm to his side to retrieve a T-shirt to clean up with, utterly uncaring about potentially ruining it, interested only in making them comfortable as soon as possible. When he had swiped up the watery mess as best as he could, he flung the wet shirt to the floor and then used the last vestiges of his muscle strength to lay them both down on the bed, facing each other.

Prompto looked shiny, and red, and absolutely wiped out. His cobalt blue eyes were mostly closed, but he was managing to peer at Noctis every few seconds under heavy eyelids. Noctis suspected that he himself didn't look much better.

“I think that was the most intense yet,” Prompto told him in a conspiratorial whisper, grabbing one of his heat-wrinkled hands and clasping it lovingly.

“And no crying. Bonus,” Noctis murmured, licking his lips and tasting salt. “You're a firework, you know,” he said appreciatively.

“We never did it like that before. It was hot,” the blond confessed, grinning his thousand-watt grin and altering the constellations of his freckles in the process.

“Mm-hm. I love you,” Noctis said softly, his own muted grin flashing back at Prompto. “Um......” he started, hesitantly preparing his question. He felt his partner's hand tense slightly in his own in response.

“...What's up?” Prompto urged after a few silent seconds, faintly worried.

“You, uh...” Noctis began, licking his pale lips and betraying his nervousness. “You love me too, right?”

“Of course I do! Noct?” Prompto asked weakly, helpless against the instinct of dread in his gut.

“No, it's fine, I just...I mean, we're serious, right? You agree with that?”

“Noct, you're scaring me...”

“You can see us being together for...for a long time, can't you?” Noct urged.

“Well yeah, at least I hope so! Unless you're trying to break up with me and doin' a really crappy job of it...” Prompto replied, his voice getting higher and tighter with anxiety.

“I'm not, I promise...just answer me? It's important,” the Prince pleaded, his heart pained by the anguish in Prompto's suddenly-watery cobalt eyes.

“Yeah, I wanna be with you until you get bored of me,” the blond said shakily.

“Stop talking like that. I'll never get bored of you,” Noctis chided him, vaguely irritated by the accusation.

“You say that now...”

“I mean it, stop stressing out. I just...needed to make sure you didn't mind. Staying with me.”

“Dude, in case you hadn't noticed I already moved in with you, we live together. And if you weren't the Prince I would already have run away with you to go live in some little coast town somewhere,” Prompto laughed nervously, before looking scandalised that he had actually admitted to something that he wanted, and had never before vocalised.

“...Really?” Noctis asked softly, touched by the idea.

“...Yeah. I'd be a rich photographer and you'd, I dunno, fish and nap all day,” the blond said, looking enamoured with the idea to the extent that its practical impossibility appeared to have already broken his heart some time ago. A bereaved sort of excitement glowed in his watery eyes.

“That...sounds perfect,” Noctis agreed honestly, aching at the imaginary proposition. “One day, yeah?”

“Pft, yeah right,” Prompto sighed with a wry smile, stretching his limbs and snuggling up closer to his partner in the low light. “Let's not talk about stuff like that, okay? I don't wanna get all depressed.”

“I mean it, Prom. You're right, I am the Prince. And one day I'll be King. If I wanna abdicate and make freakin' Ignis leader of the country instead, then I can. He'd do a way better job anyway. And then we can retire aged twenty-five and go find your little sea village. I wouldn't be the first royal to do something like that for the sake of love.”

“Right,” Prompto laughed, nodding only to appease him. “Whatever you say, Future Ex-Highness.”

“Good,” Noctis replied firmly, aware that Prompto wasn't taking him seriously, but cheered by the mere idea, and by the fact that he had given it some sort of tangibility now that he had shared it aloud. “Don't think I don't have plans, you know? I'm not the airhead everyone thinks I am. I have a lotta time to ponder stuff like this. And if I make you a promise, you can believe I'll stick by it,” the Prince murmured, almost to himself.

“Okay, Noct, I believe ya.” Prompto moved forward and kissed him sweetly on the mouth, before letting his head fall back on the pillow with a drowsy sigh. “You wanna sleep a little?”

“...You really need to ask?” Noct smirked.

“Right. I'm just gonna doze. See you in a few,” the blond chuckled, hooking an arm around him and making an adorable, comforted noise as he closed his eyes.

Noctis continued to lay awake, deep in thought, his gaze unwavering from the peaceful features of his sleeping boyfriend.

 

 

Chapter Text

 

 

Hey come back – N

 

I am in the bathroom dude like five yards away from you - P

 

too far - N

 

lol! So sappy. Why dont you just talk to me – P

 

Noctis was about to jokingly text back that he had lost his voice from deep-throating Prompto not long ago, but it immediately struck him that it would bring back unpleasant memories and upset his partner, so he merely ignored the question.

 

come back we're wasting time - N

 

I wanna brush my teeth - P

 

later – N

 

In their en-suite, Prompto chuckled to himself as he read the message, and continued brushing his teeth anyway, humming cheerfully and loudly around the froth of toothpaste in his mouth. He had already inspected the fresh bite-mark on his shoulder with morbid fascination, and now he put his phone on the counter and used his free hand to give it a curious prod, wincing at the entirely-unsurprising throb of pain.

“You bit me again,” he called out, his words garbled by his toothbrush and echoing in the pristine bathroom.

“Huh?” came the distant reply.

The blond rolled his eyes, rinsed his mouth and finished off. He made his way back to the low-lit bedroom, completely naked. Noctis was on his back on the bed, also naked, and holding his phone above his head with both hands and peering at the bright screen. When Prompto's weight depressed the mattress beside him, he accidentally dropped the heavy device onto his nose, howling in pain and rolling onto his side.

“Shit, Noct,” Prompto exclaimed, trying his very best to sound supportive through his helpless laughter, rubbing the brunette's bicep soothingly.

“Aghh,” the Prince groaned, rolling back and rubbing his nose irritably. “Damn it.”

The blond sat beside him, trying to chew back his grin and failing. “I'm back. All clean and fresh.”

“...Hey,” Noctis replied after the pain had passed. He sat up a little higher, plumping pillows behind him, and smiled. “Ignis texted. He's going to that market thing tomorrow so we've got all day.”

“Sweet! What's the plan?” Prompto asked eagerly, turning toward the brunette and settling a hand on Noct's pale abdomen, distracting himself by tickling his fingerprints over the toned, lean muscle there.

“Snuggling?” Noctis suggested, smirking at him.

“No arguments from me,” Prompto beamed, resting his head on Noct's broad shoulder, eyes on his partner's soft, sleepy dick and pondering whether it was time to wake it up.

“...I need to go out tomorrow. On my own. It won't take long,” Noctis added uncertainly, turning his head to gauge Prompto's reaction.

The blond met his eyes and tried to look nonchalant. “Uh, okay! ...Palace stuff?”

“N-no...'us' stuff. I can't tell you yet. It's a surprise.”

Looking slightly relieved, Prompto nodded. “No problem. You'll be here when I wake up?” he asked hopefully. His question was met with a snort from the brunette.

“Have I ever woken up before you? Even with an alarm?”

“...Good point,” his boyfriend conceded with a chuckle. For a minute they listened, lax, to the continuous clatter of rain upon the window, the evening sky outside a crisp, wet indigo. Prompto was contemplating the chances of a full flood tomorrow as a result of the endless precipitation, when Noct's bare shoulder nudged him.

“You okay?” the Prince's familiar husky tone sounded.

“Mm-hm!” came the chirpy response, and Noctis, well-versed in his best friend's behaviour, waited for the inevitable caveat to Prompto's cheeriness. He didn't have to wait long. “...Uh...it's a good surprise, right?”

“Well...you see, that kinda depends on you,” Noctis chortled, turning further into Prompto and grinning into his hairline.

The blond's immediate tense silence, however, did not bode well, and Noctis regretted his levity. “Prom. Don't worry about it. Please,” he instructed. “I don't want you losing sleep over that when there's plenty more fun stuff we could do to keep you awake tonight...”

There was another brief silence, swelling with stifled amusement. “...How long were you waiting to use that one?” Prompto asked, just about managing not to burst out laughing.

“I have no idea what you're talking about,” the Prince shrugged airily, his pale lips down-turned in an injured pout.

“...That was like, the most rehearsed-sounding thing you have ever said.”

“...Actually, I was gonna use it the next time you starting stressing out about nothing. Which is always,” Noct added, laughing sweetly.

“Hey!”

The following play-fight devolved within minutes into giggly attempts to pin each other down, which in turn ended up with Prompto laying on top of Noctis and using his weight to affectionately crush his partner. Noctis scowled up at him, his discontent marred somewhat by the bright pinkish flush on his face and the excitement in his grey-blue eyes. He made a few attempts to wrest his wrists free from surprisingly-strong hands, but was thwarted, and he steamed slightly with their shared exerted body heat, and the carnal anticipation in the evening air.

Ceasing his struggles, Noctis let out a quick, husky laugh, and grinned up at his partner. “Stay up there?” he asked, before nibbling hopefully on his bottom lip.

Prompto tilted his head playfully, and smirked back. “Aw Noct, what are you trying to say? That...you want me to top tonight?”

The Prince rolled his eyes and said nothing, refusing to beg.

“Yeah?” Prompto continued, wriggling his hips slowly upon Noct's pelvis. “You want me to fill you up?”

Exasperated, but still belligerent, Noctis stared challengingly up at his lover in the low light. His wrists were still pinned and the rapid beat of blood in his veins throbbed with a tiny, exhilarating pain under the pressure of the blond's palms.

Prompto didn't back down, starting to push his hardening cock daringly against the Prince's, sighing and keening extravagantly. Noctis was almost ready to succumb, when the sexy talk grew decidedly silly.

“Want me to stick it up your ass?” Prompto cooed and moaned sweetly, whilst obviously struggling not to cackle.

“Damn it, Prom. You ruined it,” Noctis snickered, though he noted that neither his erection, nor Prompto's, deflated in the slightest. “But yeah. All of the above.”

Mm,” came the blond's eloquent reply, and Noctis was seized in a warm, damp and delightful smooch, Prompto's tongue soon lapping into his mouth and pampering his own with blood-hot, muscular ablutions. Almost immediately, Noct's wrists were released as Prompto cupped his face and tilted his head to get deeper into his mouth. The idea to use his newfound liberty to roll his partner and ravish him was tempting, but the Prince instead used his fingers to push marks of ownership in the blond's fair, freckled skin wherever he could.

“You missed this?” Prompto whispered wetly into his mouth, before giving his bottom lip a few lazy bites. To illustrate, he pushed his damp prick against Noct's, shimmying his hips slowly until he felt the brunette spread his legs for him. It had been a little while since Noctis had bottomed, in spite of it being his quiet preference.

“...Only fair that you got to try it for a bit,” the brunette replied, trying to kiss Prompto but finding himself repelled every time as the blond playfully pulled back, frustrating and arousing him.

“Come on,” Noctis continued, lowering his voice and making it as husky as possible. He growled out his order almost subsonically. “Take me.”

The Prince was thrilled to see Prompto shiver visibly and sigh, laughing breathlessly, his eyes afire with a barely-restrained fervour.

“Since you asked so nicely,” the blond replied, his voice breaking and creaking out as an eager whisper.

“Uh...and Prom?” Noctis murmured, sucking in a shuddery, airless breath.

“Yeah?” the blond's eyes fevered into his own, fine teeth biting down right upon the freckle on his bottom lip.

Noctis hesitated for a few self-conscious moments in the gloom of the bedroom, and then murmured in a voice like hot smoke.

“...Go as hard as you want.”

Prompto sighed, helplessly turned on. He rewarded his partner with a sudden, starving kiss, the first of many, and a guttural promise.

“Sure thing, Your Highness.”

 


 

Noct's limbs were clamped around Prompto's lean and slippery body, as tight as he could manage with the blond thrusting arrhythmically and frantically above him and almost dislodging the grip of his arms and legs with every solid, vocal push of his hips.

Positioned in the middle of the bed, the Prince's head was thrown back, his teeth gritted, whilst Prompto's was lowered against the crook of Noct's neck, alternating between sobbing and biting at the brunette's throat, and pulling back to gasp in sticky air. The room was smoulderingly-dim and achingly hot despite the open window, their conjoined, pounding bodies grimy with sweat and effort, skin practically steaming.

P-Prom...Pro-om!” Noctis uttered, throat tight and tired, his voice desperate to roar but his exhaustion only fuelling the shakiest of growls. The sheer force of the blond's weight shoving into him, flattening him from above and forcing the air from him with every punching thrust, was truncating his words and shortening his breaths into wheezy, asthmatic gasps. Noct was shuddering hugely; full-body, hypothermic spasms. Prompto was well aware of his best friend's impending climax, the contractions that squeezed and burned him were growing tighter, more frequent.

Noct...fuck...please!” Prompto begged vaguely, his muscles sore with overuse, his own orgasm tremoring and stinging in his core, ready to rupture.

Not quite on cue, the Prince groaned out an anguished noise a minute later, his head sinking back in utter surrender, his hair wet on the black bedspread. His jaw cracked open and his eyes squinched shut as he came, his long, torn sighs of utter defeat almost anti-climactic. Noct's blood-hot body, however, crushed Prompto to the point of pain, and the blond was urged into his own peak, snarling and sensuously grinding into his lover, whose sheened body writhed out his impressive orgasm almost in slow-motion.

~*~*~

When it was over, Prompto slid out a little more roughly than he had intended, listening to Noct's small noise of pain and then his groan of discontent at the warm, watery fluid that immediately flooded from him. Prompto went to lay beside him and ended up essentially collapsing onto the damp bedspread, his head and limbs pounding, his throat sore and dehydrated. Beside him, Noct was shivering and frowning, smearing sweat from his face and wheezing audibly, the air in his lungs crackling from tiredness.

Shit, Noct...” Prompto murmured, his eyes closed. He pressed his face into the bed and gave an almighty groan. “This is how I die,” came the muffled complaint.

“...Yeah,” the Prince agreed, not having the energy to elaborate further.

The only superfluous movement they made before passing out together on the bed, was to loosely link their wet and heat-wrinkled hands, and turn their bodies towards each other.

 

Chapter Text

When Noctis awoke and sat up the next morning, he was hard-pressed to decide whether the fact that he was conscious before Prompto was a portent of blessed serendipity, or one of terrible foreboding. He allowed himself a few pensive, awed moments to absorb the novel experience of being the only wakeful person in the apartment, but soon found himself staring down at the rumpled blond tucked up beside him.

“...Hey,” he offered in a weak whisper, resting one hand on the huddled form of Prompto's shoulder. “I'm going out soon.”

The curtains were open a crack to allow watery light into the room, which had a damp, grey quality. Leaning over to remove his fully-charged phone from its wire and check the time, Noctis was astounded to see that it was half past eight in the morning. He genuinely couldn't remember the last time he had woken up before an alarm. Heck, he barely managed to wake up with an alarm, plus ten snoozes and usually some sort of borderline assault from Ignis (or more recently, Prompto, whose assaults were of a decidedly more sexual nature).

The blond groaned and wriggled deeper under the black duvet, tucking it tight under his chin, eyes closed. When he spoke, it was clear he was far less conscious than Noctis.

Nn...hey baby...”

The Prince chuckled softly, and turned to interrogate his best friend, amused by this new turn of events.

“'Baby?' You never call me that. You dreaming about someone else? Something you need to tell me, Prom?”

Prompto peeked an eye open and winced up at his partner, his freckles crinkling in a wry grin. “I'm too embarrassed to say it when I'm awake. Now I'm half-asleep and can totally pretend I didn't know what I was saying...”

Noctis shuffled down the bed a little so he was reclining, eye to eye, with Prompto. “You can call me that if you want. I like it. It's better than 'dude.'”

“Ah, shut up dude,” Prompto snorted, sneaking a bed-heated hand out to swat at him. The Prince grabbed it and gave it a few playful swings before kissing the knuckles. The blond shifted a little and mumbled sleepily. “Anyway, what the hell's goin' on...why are you awake before midday...”

“You're dreaming that you're in a parallel universe,” Noct smiled conspiratorially.

“Ah...so I'm a lazy Prince and you're my cute, energetic boyfriend...makes sense...”

The brunette sniggered and ran his thumb across Prompto's. “That's right. Did you hear me before? I'm gonna head out soon. Won't be long.”

“Kay. Love you,” the blond sighed happily, giving Noct's hand a weak squeeze before letting it go and rolling over. Noctis suddenly saw a deflation of the bedspread and heard a sharp yelp, and realised that Prompto was about to fall out of bed. Grabbing the blond's bulk and hauling him back safely onto the mattress, he indulged himself whilst his hands were bunched in the heavy duvet and his lover's body was prone beneath him.

“Klutz,” he told the blond affectionately, before leaning in to give him a firm smooch, Prompto's lips dry, warm and lethargically enthusiastic against his.

“...So this is what it feels like to be rescued by a Prince,” Prompto muttered in a croaky, playful tone.

“Go back to sleeping, Beauty,” Noctis smirked, giving the tip of his nose a peck and sitting back, smoothing the covers around his best friend and patting the lump that constituted his torso. “Oh yeah...can you do me a favour while I'm out?”

Prompto had snuggled back to his previous position, a little further from the treacherous drop at the side of the bed than before. “Anything.”

“Can you change the bed? It's all jizzy.”

There followed a tense, concentrated silence, in which Noctis sensed he had perhaps been foolhardy in his request and was about to get quite badly hurt.

The tension dissipated, however, in a soft, delightful giggle a few seconds later. “Fine. I guess I'm as much to blame as you for all the mess. Right, off you go, and bring me back something wonderful.”

“I'll do my best,” Noctis nodded to the unseeing blond, and he meant it.

 


 

Remind me why you couldn't do the bed yourself - P

 

You were in it - N

 

Ha ha (ー ー;) - P

 

And I'm tired out from all the boning - N

 

Hey my ass got boned too - P

 

I'll change the bed next time – N

 

I'm getting a screenshot of that msg – P

 

Noctis huffed a little laugh to himself as he approached the chocolate shop that Prompto worked at. It was just opening, but he was loitering across the street in his cap and tracksuit, scuffing his feet and trying to psych himself up to go in. Prompto's boss, the older woman who winked or wolf-whistled at him every time she saw him, had already noticed him and given him a not-so-subtle thumb's-up. He had offered a shy and sheepish wave in return, and then pretended to check messages on his phone. It was only when the fluffy-grey sky started drizzling cold rain that he decided to move, crossing the narrow street, taking a deep breath and steeling himself.

He was about to cross the threshold, where artificial warmth from the heater inside the shop clashed nauseatingly with the damp chill outside, when his phone pinged again.

 

Is everything going ahead as planned? - Ignis

 

Noctis thumbed out a reply, suffering a nervousness that he felt was entirely justified.

 

Phase 1 is happening right now – N

 

Keep me informed! - Ignis

 

The Prince sighed shakily, silently thankful for his advisor's support. Thinking of how he had gotten to this point, he took a moment to revisit the memory of one of the most terrifying conversations he had ever had in his life.

 

~~~~~~~~~

 

- 2 weeks earlier -

 

“Uh...Iggy?”

Ignis was surprised to feel a tug on the sleeve of his shirt as they were both leaving the dimly-lit and sparsely-populated conference room that night. The advisor was instantly and fondly reminded of the same action executed by a much younger Prince who wanted his attention.

Ignis nodded politely to the handful of tired-looking councillors who were leaving, allowing them to file past and out of the room, which echoed eerily despite its relatively small size. The ceiling was inked in darkness; the guttering candles bordering the room in their ancient sconces too distant to illuminate it. Gesturing, he indicated the long blackwood table at which they had been sequestered for the past few hours, sensing the evening grow long and dim until night was well and truly upon them. As Noct returned to his high-backed chair, Ignis checked the time on his phone. Just past 11pm.

“Can we talk?” Noctis asked quietly.

“Of course. Do you wish to text Prompto first? To let him know you might be late?”

“I already did,” the Prince assured him, his hands on the age-scarred table top, his fingers fiddling with each other and his eyes down. He appeared tentative, but not unduly fearful.

In the peaceful silence, Ignis sat opposite him and adopted a casual position, merely waiting and listening to tiny crackles and fizzes as a fat candle in the corner of the darkening room drowned in its own wax. When Noctis finally looked up and met his eyes, the advisor realised he had been gravely mistaken. Noctis wasn't fearful. He was terrified. His silver-blue eyes were mutely wild, and suddenly the Prince's hands were clenching together so hard that his already-pale knuckles turned white.

“...I need to talk to you,” Noctis murmured, somewhat redundantly.

Ignis smiled and nodded in what he hoped was a reassuring manner, even though his own heart was threatening to start pounding in empathy. “So I gather. In your own time, Noct.”

“I need to talk to Dad too, but...that can wait. I need to kind of test the waters. I need advice but I'm scared that you're gonna tell me something I don't want to hear. Actually, I'm almost sure of it,” the Prince started rambling, eyes down on the tabletop again. Ignis stayed silent, seeing that Noctis was trying to sort things out in his own head, and that this was clearly the first time he had tried to vocalise whatever was bothering him. They both flinched at a loud fizz from another guttering candle, and Ignis got up, prudently going to turn on a heavy lamp in the corner of the room, its weak bulb brightening the musty gloom somewhat, though tenebrous shadows still shrouded everything. He returned to his seat, and waited for Noctis to continue.

“I...I'm serious about Prompto.” When the Prince licked his lips and glanced up at Ignis, the advisor realised he was meant to answer.

“I know. You're best friends. You live together. Anyone can see you are devoted to each other.” He was surprised to see Noct's eyebrows raise and his posture deflate in relief, as if he had been expecting Ignis to argue.

“You think so?”

“Of course,” Ignis replied with total honesty, shrugging. “You are superb for each other. It heartens me to see you so happy together.”

Noctis actually laughed, sighing out a few long exhales and ruffling his hair. “I...Wow, okay, that's good to hear.”

“Did you expect me to chastise you?” Ignis asked, both confused and concerned.

“No, not that...well...not exactly. Y'see, the thing is...I was...” the sentence trailed off in a husky sigh of frustration as Noct tried to pick his words.

Ignis took a gamble and rested his hand briefly upon that of Noct's, which was fidgeting anxiously. The Prince calmed a little, and took another long breath.

“Iggy, I know what I'm supposed to do...with regards to...everything,” he started tentatively, and a little vaguely. “But it's...I just want to know if there is any way I could...if there was any kind of loophole. Some precedent......something that means I can be with Prompto for the rest of my life,” he said, the last words barely a whisper.

The advisor swallowed down a palpitation of affection, and was mildly alarmed to find his throat constricting a little. “...Noctis, nobody is going to separate you. We're not jailers, neither are we heartless.”

Noctis licked his lips again. “I know that. I mean...I mean officially, is it possible? Shit,” he muttered, resting his head on one hand and staring at the table. “It's stupid, I know. Dad doesn't even know we're a couple. I think he thinks we're just fucking roommates,” he hissed, his brow creasing in irritation and bitterness.

“He need only swap the last two words around,” Ignis couldn't help saying, smiling, and was gratified by Noct's glance of surprise and the resultant dirty chuckle.

“You're a dark horse, Specs.”

“Quite. At any rate, I'm fairly certain your father is aware that you and Prompto are more than just 'buddies,' even though he hasn't said so explicitly. Since I'm sure that he would be supportive, I think that you should at the very least tell him that you're together before you surprise him with any nuptial bombshells.”

“Noted,” Noctis smiled wryly, before his expression fell into one of thoughtful pessimism. “...But it is impossible, isn't it.” He didn't bother to enunciate it as a question.

“I didn't say that, Noctis.” The advisor waited until the younger man looked up at him before continuing. “It...may interest you to know that I've done a little research of my own. I thought I was well-versed in royal history, but I wasn't expecting some of the things I discovered. Did you know, for example, that I found detailed evidence in the archives of two separate rulers from your lineage that were in homosexual relationships? One King, and one Queen, over the centuries that your family has reigned. It's all written extensively, and openly, for anyone to see if they only looked – provided they have access to the archive, naturally. Therefore, anybody belonging to the Palace community is potentially aware of this. And I personally know of a similar situation in a neighbouring kingdom, some decades ago. I have no doubt that your father knows about it too, perhaps even planned on telling you about this himself if the issue ever arose.”

Ignis paused, noting the open-mouthed expression on the younger man's face.

He cleared his throat and carried on. “The only people who don't know about it, it seems, are the public. But the Palace, at the time of the respective reigns, were completely aware of the situation. Records were kept, duties performed, the monarch ruled as normal. They had a spouse 'for show,' to appease tradition and avoid alienating any citizens. The spouses were members of the Court picked for their loyalty, their own nobility, and their ability to uphold the system as protocol dictated. They also provided vital heirs, via artificial insemination. However, the monarch's true life partners lived with them in the Palace. They were officially betrothed, and existed as any married couple would – though of course, an amount of discretion was imperative. The 'public' spouses, too, had their own lives, their own partners. As of yet, I haven't read anything about 'open' homosexual couples, but this new information is intriguing, don't you think?”

There was a long, mute and tremulous pause, Noctis merely staring at him in the lowering shadows. Eventually, the Prince spoke.

“So...So you...went into the archives and researched it...for me?”

Ignis cast his eyes down in embarrassment, pushing his glasses higher up on the bridge of his nose. “Well...I could see what Prompto meant to you. I anticipated that the issue might come up, sooner or later, and thought it best to be prepared for any eventuality.”

“A true strategist,” Noctis grinned, and the grin was one of his rarest – bright, genuine, and beaming with happiness. “I can't believe it, Iggy. It's...”

“Remarkable,” Ignis finished, and Noct nodded in agreement. “Of course,” the advisor continued, "I get the feeling you've never discussed any of this with Prompto.”

“No. I know he loves me, but...I can't help thinking that if I asked him, he'd do it just to make me happy. Even if he didn't want to. He's a frickin' martyr,” Noctis sighed, licking his lips.

“I'm aware of his penchant for self-sacrifice if he thinks it will keep the peace and avoid strife, but I think even Prompto would hesitate to marry a future King just because he thought he ought to. You should give him a little more credit,” Ignis smiled. “At any rate, this is something which absolutely must be discussed before you even think about proposing, Noctis. And you have to talk to your father. About everything. I have no desire to keep you from happiness in your personal life, indeed I am thrilled that you have found what you're looking for at such a young age. I trust your judgement, and I know that Prompto is a fine match for you in every way. If such a relationship was allowed to exist openly, I know that he would do a flawless job of being royal consort, his heart is certainly in the right place. But you must never forget that your priority is the Kingdom, the Crown, and the Crystal. Your bloodline is sacrosanct, and has to be perpetuated for the good of the country. I don't need to tell you this. I know you are fully cognisant of the burden of your duties, and I want you to know that both I and your father think you are already doing a splendid job. You will make a fine King.”

Ignis took a deep breath, nearing the end of his oration. “Everybody will do their best to ensure that whatever happens, you will have every possible support. If that future includes Prompto, then so be it. We all consider it an honour to serve you.”

By the time the advisor had finished his speech, Noctis was biting down on his bottom lip hard enough that a dark pearl of blood had appeared, and as he kept gnawing, it popped and smeared scarlet stains over his front teeth. Tears sheened his face and made wet spiderwebs of his eyelashes, and his breaths were sticky and laboured.

“Don't feel you have to say anything now, it's a lot to take in. This probably calls for a considerable amount of thinking, and a lot of discussion. Come, let's go home, it's late.” Ignis offered his hand and the Prince took it, standing up with a groan. Noctis used his other arm to smear tears from his face.

“Ah, shit. Sorry, that was kinda...wow. Roller-coaster.”

“I understand. I'll drop you home?”

“Yeah, thanks. You know, I was expecting you to tell me I'm just an idiot kid who doesn't know anything about life or love. That I should get this stupid idea right out of my head.”

The advisor demurred. “You're an adult now, Noctis. Besides, when it comes to love, trust me, age is no guarantor of wisdom or judgement. I know couples who have been together since they were barely teenagers, who have celebrated many enviable decades of happiness together. They're as much in love now as they ever were. I trust you to know your own heart.”

The Prince smirked at the older man. “...You seeing anyone, Iggy?” He laughed sweetly at the irritable tut that he got in return.

“That, your Highness, is neither here nor there. Anyway, consider what I said about talking to your father, and to Prompto. Promise?”

Noctis sniffed mightily and let out a wheezy laugh.

“I promise.” Without warning, he threw his arms around his advisor and hugged him tight. “You're the best.”

Coughing self-consciously, Ignis accepted the impromptu hug and gave his ward a slightly awkward pat on the back. Blushing at the unexpected attention, he murmured a reply.

“My pleasure, Highness.”

 

~~~~~~~~~

 

 

Chapter Text

Noctis was greeted warmly by Prompto's boss when he entered the shop. Susie, a short and spunky older lady, chatted with him briefly, and he could feel the eyes of the young female shop assistant on his back. Glancing in her direction, he saw her blush deeply and turn back to the shelf she was filling with truffles, dropping a couple of gold-coloured boxes as she did so. He didn't know who was more embarrassed, the girl or himself. After making small talk he went to browse the pleasantly-cluttered little shop. He knew what he was looking for, but he indulged himself by wandering around and picking up a few extras. He could not deny that he was a bona fide chocoholic, and that it was all he could do to only take three of the free samples and try not to look too gluttonously pleased with himself afterwards.

He filled his little black basket slowly, conscious of the other customers filtering into the shop despite the early hour. He tilted his cap further over his face and tried to shield his basket as best he could, irrationally fearful of a passer-by seeing the contents either by accident or design.

When he eventually wandered to the counter (which was strewn in colourful merchandising and cramped by boxes and trays of chocolates), his basket contained exactly what he had been looking for, as well as more than a few impulse buys.

“Hey again sweetie. You find everything you wanted?” Prompto's boss grinned, taking his basket and signing into her till.

“Yeah, thanks Susie. Could you...not mention this to Prompto? It's kind of a secret.” Noctis asked, fidgeting with his wallet.

“Sure thing. But I don't know why you need all these chocolates. Looks like you two have already eaten,” she winked, and pointed a finger to her own neck whilst she rang up the Prince's purchases.

Noctis peered at her neck, nonplussed, seeing nothing. It took him an embarrassingly long time to realise, in horror, what she meant. He slapped a hand to the corresponding place on his own neck, feeling the slight burn of the lovebite that Prompto must have left there at some point yesterday. Susie chuckled warmly at his mortification.

“You'd never expect it from somebody who looks as cute and innocent as our Prom, right?” she grinned, and Noctis nodded in reluctant agreement, his face flaming almost as much as the mark on his neck, which seemed to be throbbing relentlessly now that he was aware of it.

“Don't worry about it, honey. I bet you gave as good as you got,” Prompto's boss continued, in perfect earshot of the other people in the confines of the small shop. Noctis groaned and glanced apprehensively at the customers and the other sales assistant, who was blushing brightly as she pretended to make notes of stock levels on a shelf of hard candy. The Prince distractedly thought that an earthquake right about now might actually be welcome if only the earth would swallow him up without trace.

When he finally exited the shop into cool and clammy April air, Noctis sucked in a deep, cleansing breath and zipped up his hoodie as high as he could to cover the bite mark. He hefted his shopping bag and began the trek home. Pulling out his phone with his free hand, he sent a slightly-garbled message to Ignis, the dexterity of his thumb affected by his brisk walk.

 

Hey got the stuf hows the farm matket – N

 

The reply was almost instant.

 

I have found some wonderful truffles. Let me know when the next phase begins – Ignis

 

Noctis laughed to himself at the mental image of his advisor rooting through piles of fragrant truffles like the proverbial pig and interrogating every vendor about their wares.

 

Will do. I gota get P out of aprtmt first – N

 

What's the plan? - Ignis

 

No idea yet :/ - N

 

As Noctis trudged, he saw no sign of further incoming messages, and replaced his cellphone in his pocket. As much as he tried to urge his brain to think of a reasonable excuse to get Prompto out of their apartment alone without arousing suspicion or provoking his boyfriend's insecurities, his mind seemed adamant on replaying the recent meeting with his dad. It had taken an indescribable amount of courage to finally, finally open up to the King. Noct had barely had time to speak with his father about even the most mundane things over the last six months or so, let alone something as monumental as his relationship with his best friend. It had been a cathartic experience, to say the least.

 

~~~~~~~~~

 

9 days earlier

 

Noctis had been putting it off for days, despite Ignis' frequent reminders in person and over the phone. He absolutely agreed with his advisor that he needed to have a good, long Talk with his dad. He was just shit-scared to do it. As it happened, he had almost dredged up the courage to organise a meeting, when he himself was summoned via a messenger from the Palace. Ignis had taken the opportunity of Noct's visit to schedule some other routine appointments for the sake of efficiency.

Noctis strolled down warmly-lit corridors of his former home towards the King's private quarters, scratching the back of his head tiredly. It was nearly 8pm and he hadn't napped today, so he was pretty drained. He was also feeling maudlin because he hadn't seen Prompto since that morning, as his boyfriend was doing his boss a favour and working a late shift at the shop.

The Prince had spent a fairly busy day training with Gladio, as well as enduring his routine medical check-up and clothes fittings so that the tailors would be ready for any impromptu formal occasion Noct's handlers could possibly throw at him. He had been quietly thrilled to find that he had grown an inch taller, and that his shoulders had broadened. He imagined informing Prompto of this new fact when he got home, letting the blond strip him and double-check the measurements. That train of thought turned very lewd, very quickly, so he cleared his throat, grinning to himself, and tried to cool his head before meeting his dad.

He pushed open the door after greeting the guard by name and having a quick catch-up chat with him, and was met with a dark and cosy room and his smiling father. King Regis was sipping whiskey in an armchair, a hardback novel bookmarked with a quill on the antique table in front of him. A low, crackling fire was gorging oxygen in the blackened grate, and the resultant shadows that flooded the far corners of the room made Noctis feel like he wanted to curl up and sleep.

Sitting down with a small groan in the armchair next to the older man, he stretched his arms and listened to the joints pop, before pulling down the sleeves of his black T-shirt.

“S'up, dad,” he said laconically, smirking as he made his typical opening gambit, goading his dad playfully with his informality.

“Evening, Noctis,” the King replied evenly, laughter in his wrinkled eyes and a mirroring smirk on his face. “I take it you want to get right down to business. You look like you're about to drop. You're welcome to a whiskey if you want,” he offered, gesturing to the decanter on a glossy sideboard.

“Hey, you called me here, remember?” the Prince replied, sprawling in the chair in a further attempt to irritate his dad. “And no drink, thanks.”

“...How is everything?” Regis asked, in a low and smiling tone.

“Everything's fine. Training's fine. All the paperwork and meetings are fine. The apartment's fine and I'm eating fine,” Noctis drawled, feigning boredom.

“Is Prompto fine?” Regis asked, not missing a beat.

Noctis carefully crushed down his surprise at the question, and shrugged, though he had a feeling his dad had caught the millisecond's pause. “Yeah, sure.”

“Ignis says the apartment looks better than ever since Prompto moved in. It's been a while now, what's it like living with someone your own age? The freedom must be gratifying.”

Glad that the topic was shifting slightly away from his best friend, Noctis shrugged again. “I like it. We're surviving, the place is clean, and we manage to feed ourselves. I like feeling more...normal,” he said quietly.

“No squabbles, no fights? They do say that you don't really know a person until you live with them.”

“No,” Noctis replied, a little taken aback. He realised that he hadn't actually considered it. “It's been...surprisingly good. Feels really natural, you know? He's a good roomie.”

“Does he pay rent?” Regis asked casually, as though Ignis hadn't already informed him all about the arrangement.

“No, he pays in kind.” Noct said. He sensed his father turn to him sharply, and realised what he had said. “No! Shit, I didn't mean it like that. He, uh, buys the groceries and stuff. He insisted.” The Prince groaned under his breath and rubbed his forehead in embarrassment.

“Sounds like it's working out well.” the King said, taking a sip of his drink to conceal his amusement. “What are your long-term plans?”

“Uh...plans?” the Prince turned to properly look at his father, mystified. “...Uh...be the Prince?”

“Noctis, don't be flippant. You can't stay in the apartment forever. I know you don't like to think about it, but we are both aware my health has been declining recently, and I don't expect it to recover. Now, I'm not threatening to drop dead without warning. But I think you should start considering...all eventualities. Does Prompto have plans?”

Noctis bit his bottom lip, feeling far more unnerved and discomfited than he had five minutes ago. “I dunno,” he retorted, frowning defensively.

“Noctis,” The King's address cut through his petulance, as did his sharp gaze.

“I don't know. Really. I don't wanna know. I don't even want to think about the future. I don't look forward to any of it. Being King. Being alone. Prompto...leaving and going off to do Gods know what. And the thought of you being gone. I know it doesn't help to bury my head in the sand but if I think about it I'll lose my frickin' mind. Right now I'm...really happy. I want to enjoy it while I can. Before all the shit hits the fan.”

Noctis was startled to hear his father laugh warmly, and he stared at him.

Well, don't be too optimistic or anything. You want to rein in that mindless positivity, or you'll end up being disappointed,” Regis replied, shaking his head in merriment. “Honestly, it's not going to be as bad as all that. Why the cynicism? For starters, why on earth would Prompto leave you and 'go off?' He loves you, doesn't he?”

Noctis, in his alarm, somehow managed to have the brief thought, 'good thing I didn't take that whiskey.' He would have spat it all over the stone floor. As it was, he merely aspirated, soon coughing raucously and wheezing for breath as he hunched over. His father patted him on the back, managing to be both ameliorative and supportive.

“I'm sorry about that. You didn't think it was a secret, did you?” the King teased gently.

“Dad, what the hell,” Noctis managed to murmur once he had finished spluttering, his voice weak and his heart thundering. Leaning forward on his own knees, he lowered his head a little and breathed deeply, feeling suddenly overheated and faint.

“Noct – are you alright?” the King asked in concern, putting his drink down.

“You think me and Prompto are dating?” Noctis asked, forcing out a little laugh, and feeling wretched that he was even trying to deflect the insinuation.

“Are you denying it?” Regis asked softly, patting his shoulderblade.

There was a long, long pause that itched with silent half-formed excuses, before Noctis shook his head.

“No.” The Prince sighed shakily, and rubbed his aching head. “...I'm so sorry.”

King Regis sat back a little, his next words gruff and stern. “Don't you dare apologise, Noctis. Don't apologise for being in love with someone who loves you back. You haven't done anything that requires forgiveness.”

The Prince nodded mutely, his head still lowered and his silver-black hair masking his features. His father could tell from the shivers in his hands and the hitch in his breathing that he was fighting back tears.

“Noct,” he continued. “There is absolutely no reason to be upset. I daresay I knew that the two of you were soulmates even before you did.”

The Prince let out a sticky, muffled laugh, talking in the direction of his lap. “Way to be dramatic, dad.”

“I mean it. Listen to me...you lost your mother and you had been badly injured. You had no siblings, and I wasn't around for you as I should have been. Ignis did a fantastic job, but leaving you to fend for yourself like that – the both of you, just children – is something I will always regret. You shut yourself off emotionally, socially. For years. And I despaired that you were broken, and it was my fault.”

“Dad...” Noctis tried to interrupt, though he didn't know what he was going to say.

“Let me finish. You had people around you at school but you never had any friends. I didn't know what you were thinking, ever, and I knew you weren't confiding in anybody else either. When Prompto made his way into your life it was a miracle. You smiled. You laughed. If anyone mentioned his name you started beaming and it lit up your face. I'd honestly given up hope of seeing you as happy as you used to be before your mother died. I would have given anything to see you genuinely at peace again, and suddenly there was Prompto. I remember when we were doing the routine checks on him for security, I was torn apart with nerves. I dreaded finding something out about him that meant you couldn't be friends. The relief when he passed the inspections was...well, you can imagine. After everything you'd been through, you deserved some joy. And anybody could see that the boy was head over heels for you, too.”

Noctis had lifted his head now and was staring at his father with clear, watery eyes. He had never heard any of this before, not even through Ignis.

“I'm so glad that you're still friends. And...well, something more than that now, obviously. I know you didn't date or seem interested in anybody in school, but I assumed that was part of your introversion. Not because...”

“Because I like guys,” Noctis laughed, sniffling. “Well, I like Prom, anyway. I never thought much about anyone else,” he said honestly.

“Whatever your tastes, it's none of my business, and it's not a concern. I'm glad he's in your life, one way or another. I know you wouldn't have asked him to move in with you if he wasn't special.”

“Dad...this is really sweet and everything, but...seriously, how can you say that? You want me to marry a princess or whatever and give you loads of grandkids. For the good of the bloodline.”

“Correction, I wanted that back when I thought that it was what you wanted too. Things have changed.”

“Yup, Prompto's not exactly the child-bearing type,” the Prince tutted, sighing. “I can't believe you're not kicking my ass over this. Saying it's a phase or some shit.”

“Language, Noct, please. Anyway, mooning over your best friend for three years is not a 'phase.' Everybody could see it. I'm informed that Ignis and Gladio even had some sort of running bet on when you would confess to each other.”

Ugh, dad,” the Prince groaned, hanging his head again and ruffling his hair in embarrassed irritation.

“What? Would you rather I condemn your relationship? Exile Prompto? Disown you for being with a man? It's clearly what you expected.”

“No, I...I didn't expect that, but...it can't be all 'fairytale ending,' no matter what you say. Despite what Iggy told me, I just don't think it's gonna be that easy.”

“What did Ignis tell you?” the King asked, watching his son pause in his fidgeting and grumbling.

“Oh, uh, it's......” Noctis began, privately cursing himself for his slip of the tongue. He huffed out a noisy sigh of frustration, his palms moving to cover his face briefly. He inhaled hard against his skin and abruptly stood up, going to the decanter on the shadowy sideboard and proceeding to half-fill a heavy crystal glass. Staring at the amber drink, he downed it with a wince, and then poured another while his father watched without a word.

When he sank back into his armchair, Noctis licked his lips and cleared his throat, shuffling forward to the edge of his seat and hesitating for a few final seconds.

“You took this really well, Dad, and I'm...relieved. And grateful. But...it's kinda only half the story.”

Meeting his father's eyes, he took a deep breath, and told him everything.

 

~~~~~~~~~~

 

Chapter Text

 

I have an idea. Are you ready to start Phase 2 now? - Ignis

 

Noctis paused after checking his phone, and ducked under the awning of a closed restaurant to remove himself from the steady stream of pedestrians in the street and give himself time to think. Wild palpitations thrilled his heart, and he made a spontaneous decision in less time than it took him to swallow down a bolus of excitement.

 

Let's do it. I'll be home in 20mins – N

 

I'll make sure he stays out until you are ready. - Ignis

 

It won't take long – N

 

I'll start operations in half an hour, then. - Ignis

 

Thanks Specs – N

 

Out of interest, have you actually discussed ANY of this with Prompto? - Ignis

 

Kinda – N

 

The resultant radio silence that Noctis received after his less-than-reassuring text was enough to perfectly convey to him that his advisor was Displeased. He could sense the calculatingly paternal judgement of the older man as if he was standing in front of him right now, his arms crossed and his eyes boring into him. After what seemed like an unnervingly long time, Ignis responded.

 

On your own head be it – Ignis

 

It'll be fine. We can't change what's gonna happen now. Gotta let Fate decide. - N

 

I recall that you used to say that about exams that you hadn't studied for. - Ignis

 

Yeah, exactly. - N

 

You often failed those exams. - Ignis

 

The Prince tutted loudly to himself, drawing the attention of some schoolkids passing by. He cleared his throat self-consciously and glanced back down at his phone, thumbing back a quick reply. He didn't know how Ignis always managed to sound so blunt and so damned polite at the same time.

 

It's all in motion now so let's just do this right. Prompto wants to be with me long-term so what more is there to talk about? - N

 

Quite a lot, actually. - Ignis

 

Just let me deal with this. It'll work out perfectly. You'll see. - N

 

Very well. – Ignis

 

Ur not filling me with confidence – N

 

I would feel more confident if Prompto was even remotely aware of the immense lifelong contract you are proposing to invite him into. - Ignis

 

He can always say no. - N

 

That seems an unlikely eventuality. - Ignis

 

:) I'll tell him absolutely everything. Promise. Gotta go – N

 

Good luck. - Ignis

 

Feeling something of a weight lifted from his spirit, Noctis looked up, bolstered with a sense of purpose. He took a deep and sustaining lungful of damp morning air, and trudged in the direction of home. He held the key to his future in his hand, in the most unlikely guise.

 


 

Noctis was only a few streets from home when he belatedly remembered to text his boyfriend.

 

Are you awake? Don't cook anything I bought breakfast - N

 

A minute later, he got a text that made him grin.

 

I'm barely out of bed. I wanna just take root there – P

 

Welcome to my world – N

 

Pausing to heft the two bags in his left hand, he sent an extra message, suddenly inspired.

 

Get back into bed we'll eat there - N

 

so fancy – P

boy you treat me right - P

 

...the hell lol – N

 

im half asleep – P

 

ur forgiven. nearly home x – N

 

Picking up his stride, Noctis bit his lip, feeling a little naughty, and sent one last (probably utterly transparent) text to his advisor.

 

I'll text you when we're ready - might need more time - N

 

The reply was, as usual, almost immediate.

 

Roger that. Play safe. - Ignis

 

Noctis rolled his eyes, sighing. Of course Ignis would see right through him. But the idea of his partner sleepy and warm and bed-rumpled obviously necessitated a slight postponement on the 'get Prompto out of the apartment' plan. He may have been a Prince, but he was only human after all.

 


 

“Prom? I'm back! You'd better be in bed,” Noctis called out as he closed the apartment door behind him. Glancing around cursorily, he saw no sign of his boyfriend, but was soon hailed from the direction of the bedroom.

“Hey dude! I can smell food!” came the hopeful greeting.

Noctis, as he had spoken, was trying to think of a good hiding place for his chocolate-shop purchases. He considered the small cloakroom where they kept their coats and some of their shoes, until he remembered that with any luck, Ignis' text would be luring Prompto out of the flat soon, and he would be visiting the closet to get his jacket. Biting his lip, he instead pulled open the door of Prompto's darkroom, where the newest range of photos were pinned to a clothesline and drying. He slung the bag inside, against the wall, and winced as he tried to close the door again as quietly as possible.

“I didn't know what you wanted, so I got a mix of stuff,” the Prince spoke aloud, finally shrugging off his own hoodie and kicking off his sneakers, leaving them on the floor in the living area along with his cap. “Eggs and sausage, pancakes, pastries...”

“I guess today will have to be cheat day, then,” Prompto chortled in the distance.

“I'll help you burn the calories off,” Noctis said as he made his way into the bedroom, grinning as he met the blond's gaze, and seeing the narrowed eyes and flirtatious smirk of his boyfriend.

“I know exactly what you meant by that. And I am totally not opposed to it,” Prompto chuckled, biting his bottom lip. He lay in the massive bed, propped up by a collection of fat pillows, his hair damp against his freshly-washed skin. He had apparently changed the bed, because now a slightly different set of black sheets and pillowcases was in place. The blond had his phone in hand, and Noctis could see tiny goosebumps on his bare arms from the breeze of the open window and curtains.

“You must be cold?” the Prince asked in concern, sitting beside him and meeting his mouth in a firm, dry kiss, closing his eyes and enjoying the brief pressure before pulling back and awaiting an answer.

“Just airing out the dick smell,” the blond shrugged, before laughing warmly.

“You had a shower and cleaned everything in time to make another mess?” Noctis teased back.

“Hey, at least I'm trying to keep some propriety here. Stopping the royal apartment becoming some kinda gross den of sin!”

“You can't talk about propriety after you let me pop your cherry against the window. Where the whole city could see you. Kinky,” the Prince purred, nuzzling at Prompto's jawline.

“Dammit Noct, I wish you'd stop bringing that up. You said nobody could see me but it'd serve you right if some blackmail demand comes through the letterbox one of these days.”

“If anyone got naked pictures of you, I'm sure they'd have the good sense to keep them for their own enjoyment...” Noctis muttered back, moving his mouth back to Prompto's and kissing him affectionately.

The blond accepted it with a small sigh of pleasure, then leaned back with an amused, calculating look on his face. “You taste like chocolate. You really can't help yourself, can you?”

“Huh?” the brunette replied dumbly, his mind belatedly fogging back to the free samples he'd eaten in the chocolate shop. Crap. “Oh...yeah, just a croissant thing,” he fibbed. “I was hungry.”

“You and your chocolate, I dunno,” Prompto said fondly, kissing him again. “...Hey baby.”

Noctis chuckled against the blond's mouth and nuzzled him with his nose, pleased to be called a pet name other than 'dude.' “You're in a good mood.”

“The sun's out, I had a lay-in, my hot boyfriend is back and he brought breakfast,” his partner shrugged.

“And you're horny,” Noct asserted, smirking. Prompto laughed and blushed a little. He often woke up 'in the mood,' but usually his work schedule, and Noct's various appointments, didn't allow much time for sex first thing in the morning. “You've been naked since I left, haven't you,” the Prince added, his words a statement rather than a question.

“Adulting like a pro!” Prompto grinned back, pushing back the covers and laying openly nude in front of his partner, who laughed sweetly.

“Don't you wanna eat first?”

“Mmmh...yeah, okay. Then we can get this shiny new bed all dirty again.”

“Deal,” Noctis nodded in gleeful affirmation.

 


 

The bed, for once, avoided being tainted. After Prompto had polished off his omelette, and Noctis had devoured a chocolate croissant (his first, unbeknownst to his boyfriend), they chatted about nothing across the dark marble of the kitchen island. They had ventured out of the bedroom because Noctis had forgotten to get any coffee from the breakfast place, but he preferred the one Prompto made at home anyway.

The blond in question was utterly naked, perched on his barstool like a pin-up, and it was limiting the Prince's ability to concentrate considerably. Prompto distractedly lifted his palm against Noct's and compared their hand sizes.

“Oh shit, that reminds me. Completely forgot to tell you. You know I had to go to the Palace the other day for a bunch of routine stuff? I got measured. And I'm bigger,” Noct grinned with blatant smugness.

Prompto burst out with gusty giggles, squeezing Noct's hand playfully. “I'm guessing this is one of those things that I get to follow-up later, right?”

“Right now, if you want. Actually, I wanna do something for you. If you're up for it.”

“I'm listening,” Prompto said airily, resting his chin in his other hand and affecting mild interest. His attention was suddenly seized and his facial expression betrayed his excitement as Noct pulled off his T-shirt casually, standing up and removing the rest of his clothes without a word. Sitting back down on his own stool, Noct challenged the blond with a predatory glare, and patted the top of the marble counter illustratively.

Prompto looked down, and his cobalt-blue eyes widened, narrowed and winced variously as he considered the practicalities but also the carnal possibilities of making love on top of it. In the end, he shook his head mournfully.

“I dunno, we eat up here, dude...”

Noctis chuckled, shaking his head too. “I wasn't thinking of that. Not exactly. But come on, do one thing for me. Call me 'baby' or something. 'Dude' is what you call the guy sitting next to you in chemistry class.”

“You were that guy,” Prompto reminded him, poking Noct's bare forearm fondly as he relented. “Okay, gorgeous, tell me your big plan.”

“You remember before we actually, you know...slept together. And I kinda dry-humped you against the kitchen counter,” Noctis murmured, quietly aroused by the memory.

“Yeah...that was really hot,” his partner admitted, his bright blue eyes glazing briefly as he reminisced.

“I want you to bend over it again. Right here,” the Prince replied, patting the surface of the island again. “I wanna get you ready right here.”

“...Only get me ready?” Prompto asked, laughing breathily, his sharp front teeth already nibbling his lip in anticipation.

“That's right. Trust me? And tell me if you don't like something?” Noctis asked cautiously.

“Course, dude. Uh, I mean...”

The Prince laughed. “I was kidding. 'Dude' is fine once in a while. Come here and kiss me, you're too far away.”

Prompto obeyed with a flash of a grin, going to his boyfriend, straddling his naked lap and smooching him luxuriantly.

 


 

“Oh...oh shit, Noct...dammit...”

Prompto was murmuring weakly to himself, the side of his face resting on the countertop, the cool marble now warm and damp from him feverish exhalations. He had one arm gripping the far side of the island, the other flung loosely over his head, his fingers unconsciously rummaging in his own hair as he became slowly overwhelmed. Every now and then he would lift his head to suck in deeper breaths, or attempt to shift his position, but his skull would soon fall back onto the marble with a soft 'donk.'

From his kneeling position on the hard kitchen floor, Noctis hummed in pleasure as he continued to eat his boyfriend out. Prompto was definitely more into being rimmed than he himself was, and Noct was happy to oblige him. The blond kept trying to talk to him as he lapped and sucked and tongued his wet opening, and he fought not to laugh.

“Noct...ah shit, go deeper...”

Prompto turned his head blearily and managed to rest his knee on one of the slats of the barstool to one side; he let out an agonised groan when the Prince rewarded him with a rough, slick thrust of his tongue.

“Y-you okay? Ah Gods it feels so damn good...”

Noctis sniggered against the damp, soft pink flesh he was feasting on, and used one of his hands to slap the rambling blond's backside lightly. He was gratified to hear a small, high-pitched squeak, and wiped his saliva-slippery chin before going back to using his thumbs to spread his boyfriend wide.

“...You can do that again,” Prompto murmured hopefully, somewhere above him.

Noctis got off of his knees and stood up, gritting his teeth at the sharp ache in his joints and the low throb of pain in his jaw muscles. He roughly spread Prompto one last time to get a look at his obscene handiwork, and then smacked the blond once, hard, on his right asscheek.

“Ah! Gods...” Prompto swallowed hard, lips slightly parted as he panted. Noct enjoyed the view of his flushed, peaceful expression, and then spanked him again, watching the blond's face contort in a sweet clench of excited pain. The Prince bit his lip fiendishly, and gave him a few more indulgent smacks. Prompto was slim and not especially well-padded, but he still had enough meat on his ass to make a nice handful, and a pleasing ripple when Noct's hand connected.

“Stay there. Gonna use my fingers,” Noctis told him, grabbing the half-empty lube bottle they'd brought from the bedroom. It was a matter of minutes before Prompto was rocking tenderly on his three fingers, his inhales wispy and his exhales shaky and wet.

The brunette watched him lick his lips repeatedly, watched his freckled eyelids twitch every time he grazed his prostate.

“Noct...sometime you gotta make me come just with your tongue...bet I could,” he challenged in a croaky voice, grinning and blushing.

“Challenge cheerfully accepted. Hey get up, I wanna take you,” Noctis told him, amused.

Prompto stood up with a small groan, turning round and leaning back against the counter, immediately reaching for his boyfriend and trying to pull him closer for a kiss.

“Agh, no, come on, I've just been in your ass,” the Prince tutted and turned his face away, though he knew from experience that it was a trite and unwinnable argument.

“You know I don't mind it,” Prompto cooed, making puppy-eyes. Noctis sighed and nodded, quietly entertained. He had never asked whether Prom actually got off on the idea of them kissing right after Noct had used his mouth on him, but as the blond's damp prick twitched and poked him hard in the abdomen, he strongly suspected it. The Prince accepted the kiss, enjoying it, but he was eager to move things along.

“You say you grew? I believe it,” Prompto chuckled, looking down as he grabbed Noct's cock and gave it some long-awaited attention.

“Ah, man...Prom...come on, I gotta...I wanna do you against the wall,” the Prince admitted abruptly.

“...Yeah? Wow, I'm up for that,” the blond laughed, nodding enthusiastically. “But where'd you get that idea?”

“...I had a dream about it the other night,” Noctis confessed.

“I hope it was me you were dreaming about,” Prompto grinned. “So...in here?”

Wishing that he had planned this a little better, Noctis glanced around the open-plan living area. Apart from a few of Prompto's artier photographic prints, there wasn't much adorning the walls in the way of either decoration or utility.

“I want you to hold onto something,” Noctis added, still scanning for possibilities. “I'm strong, but not that strong,” he admitted.

“You did not just make a fat joke,” Prompto muttered sulkily.

“Don't be ridiculous, you are the opposite of fat,” the brunette tutted again, rolling his eyes. He wasn't going to go anywhere near that discussion right now, because Prompto could be obsessive about his body, and arguing about it was guaranteed to turn the atmosphere sour. He gave one of Prompto's impressive biceps a firm squeeze to illustrate his next point. “But you got some decent muscle weight.”

“Hm...I'll accept that,” the blond shrugged, still looking a bit aggrieved. Noctis had the good sense to kiss him hard to distract him before he could start sub-plotting and angsting properly.

“I got an idea. Come on, sweetheart...” the Prince offered, taking his hand. The blond beamed at the term of endearment but his face fell and he groaned in embarrassment when Noctis finished his sentence. “...before you dry out.” Prompto gave him a sharp smack on the arm, and he chuckled.

They made their way to the walk-in closet in the bedroom, lube in hand. They both took one look around, and then spoke simultaneously, their eyes meeting with knowing glee.

“The garula horns!”

The hooks on the back wall were not, in fact, garula horns, but they looked very much like miniature versions of them. At the moment, they were draped in various neckties, belts and sleep masks, and Noctis stored this little fact away for future reference. The horns were moderately sharp, ivory-coloured, and curved, and weren't so much attached to the wall as embedded in it, and set about a foot apart from each other. Noctis had never been very keen on the way they looked, but right now, they would serve the requirements well.

The closet itself wasn't actually as full as might be expected. Noctis was always being given clothes that he didn't wear, and a few years ago he had decided he was sick and tired of rooting through rails of endless brand-new formal outfits to try and find things he actually needed. Since then, he made a trip to the local charity shops every six months or so with bags full to bursting, as anonymously as he could manage. He had no idea if the clothes ever got sold. If not, maybe his unwanted shirts were being used as blankets in a cat shelter or something, with strays giving birth and puking hairballs all over the priceless apparel. The thought made him smile.

Prompto went up to the row of three hooks, and gave one a sharp tug. “Seems secure,” he shrugged, flashing a grin back at his lover.

Noctis approached him in the close confines of the room, the wallpaper dark, and the lighting unchangeably low and sultry. Cupping one hand around the blond's slim back, and hooking one under his muscled thigh, he hoisted him up and pinned him against the wall, whilst Prompto yelped in surprise and wrapped his own arms around the Prince's neck.

“Hold onto one,” Noctis said, nodding at the hooks and trying not to exhibit the strain in his voice from the effort of supporting Prompto's surprising weight, all lean, strong muscle. The blond turned his head and picked off a few rogue neckties, dropping them to the dark-carpeted floor, and gripped the smooth hook.

“Alright down there Noct?” he asked, breathless and fighting giggles.

Starting to sweat, the Prince took a few fortifying breaths and pushed up into his partner experimentally, gaining a soft moan in response. He flicked his long fringe from his eyes as best he could and looked up at Prompto.

“You think this'll work?” he panted.

“I'm close,” Prompto nodded, assuring him. “Ready when you are.”

With the aid of the blond supporting himself with one hand whilst the other tugged at his slippery cock with desperate speed, Noctis managed to push his partner to the brink of his peak in no time at all.

The novel situation - the scrape of the flocked wall against his hot and sweaty back, the feeling of semi-weightlessness, the look of absolute exhaustive effort on Noct's face were all explosively exciting to Prompto, and he was shivering and hissing breath through clenched teeth within a few minutes. His guttural groans and whispery sighs had evolved into sharpened, almost angry-sounding cries, and his head banged back against the solid wall, not because he was losing stability, but because his dormant orgasm was surfacing with agonising, slow-motion urgency in his organs, burning in his blood.

“Ah...ah, Noctis...fuck!” his voice seemed muffled in the small room, insulated as it was by racks and shelves of material, but at the same time, curiously sharp and clear. Prompto almost laughed through his torture as his orgasm loomed and then ebbed again, so very close, but leaving him trembling and bereft and dizzy with need. Noct was seeing literal stars in his vision as he struggled to keep pounding up into his lover, who keened and shuddered dangerously, begging him to go harder and faster.

Please, come on, so close, please,” the blond urged him, tightening his body cruelly around him, glossy with perspiration and undulating sinuously, as impossibly fucking seductive as anything Noct had ever seen.

He had vague words on the tip of his tongue, wanted to curse or worship Prompto, but the Prince was utterly devoted to this cause, his muscles boiling with overwork, sweat dripping from his soaked hair like a broken tap, his breaths sounding ugly and coarse and wet against the blond's heaving chest.

He could have burst into tears with relief when Prom finally came, yelling in a fury, bucking and twisting and almost falling to the ground. Noctis only barely managed to anchor his boyfriend's squirming hips and catch the twitching muscle of one damp bicep. As the blond suffered wonderful aftershocks, letting out long, pretty sounds of satiation, Noctis lowered him to the carpet as gently as he could, laying him down on his back, spreading his shivering legs and finally thrusting out his own climax with sobs of complete surrender.

The Prince, once he had pulled out of Prompto's lax, warm, wet body in a gush of lukewarm seed, collapsed onto the dark carpet and closed his eyes, feeling almost sick from physical exertion. Obviously there were a whole bunch of muscle groups that training with Gladio was not addressing.

It wasn't long at all before the happy hormones from Noct's orgasm faded and the pure pain in his body made itself known. His calf muscles and shoulders throbbed, his fingers had pins and needles and his head was pounding. He started giggling without warning, wiping his weak arm across his face, and he couldn't stop.

“Noct?” the glowing blond beside him asked, inching closer on his elbows and nuzzling into his grimy, saturated hair.

Helpless with exhausted laughter, Noctis finally managed to reply in a cracked, husky voice. “Every time we do it I hurt more. I'm a wreck. I'm never gonna be able to satisfy you when we're old and grey.”

“Old and grey, huh?” Prompto asked him with a sweet, knowing smile, and Noctis froze briefly, before deciding that perhaps he hadn't said too much after all. He met the blond's pleasure-sleepy blue eyes hopefully.

“That okay with you?” he asked quietly.

The pause nearly killed Noctis, but the warm chuckle and eager nod of affirmation brought him back again. Prompto gave him a salty kiss and beamed at him.

“More than okay.”

 

Chapter Text

 

Prompto staggered from the walk-in closet after he had gotten to his feet, groaning through his laughter. He pressed one hand to the small of his back and hissed, closing his eyes and snickering.

“You did a real number on me this time, Noct.”

The Prince pulled in a deep and fortifying breath, and managed to drag himself from the carpeted floor where he had almost been prepared to give in and just fall asleep. Standing up and swaying slightly, he cast fond eyes at his partner, before frowning and swearing.

“Shit, I did. Your back,” he said vaguely, pointing and going closer. He approached the blond, who was trying to look over his own shoulder, and very gently pressed a few fingertips to the angry red abrasions on his shoulderblades.

Prompto sucked in air noisily through his teeth, grimacing. “Ah man, what the hell?”

“It musta got all scraped on the wall,” Noctis pondered aloud, looking both guilty and sympathetic. He shot a brief accusatory glare at the velvety flocked design which had caused the friction.

“It only hurts now that I know it's there,” Prompto chuckled, pulling a face, his nose wrinkling sweetly.

“Let me wash it. I'll put some cream on as well,” Noctis offered, rubbing Prompto's upper arm.

“You mean the ass cream?” the blond smirked.

“Yeah. Exactly that one,” Noct nodded, deadpan, knowing that the medicated cream they had been using for when things got a little too rough was indeed good stuff.

Prompto reached over his shoulder and touched his scapula, unable to resist. He hissed again.

“Stop prodding it,” the Prince chided fondly. “Go run the bath. I'll be there in a sec.”

“...At least I burned off that breakfast,” the blond was saying to himself as he wandered out of sight.

“And then some,” Noctis called back distractedly. Once he heard the bath running, he made his way as swiftly and silently as he could to the kitchen, where he fished his phone from his tracksuit bottoms and quickly sent a text.

 

Text him in an hour pls – N

 

Ignis' reply was predictably swift.

 

Affirmative. Will he be able to walk or should I choose a non-strenuous distraction? - Ignis

 

Haha. >_> - N

 

I'll keep the exertion to a minimum – Ignis

 

What exactly are you gonna do? :/ - N

 

I was considering an impromptu training session with some new weapons we have had commissioned. But that will likely be out of the question – Ignis

 

-_- go easy on him – N

 

Perhaps you should follow your own advice some time. - Ignis

 

Noctis groaned in embarrassment, returned his phone to his discarded tracksuit and made his way to the en-suite, hearing Prompto's sigh before he entered the room. He grinned when he saw the blond reclining in the still-filling bath, absorbing the steamy heat of the water and resting his head back, his Adam's apple bobbing temptingly. His skin was golden and damp-looking, and his breaths were shallow and relaxed. It was going to be a real shame to make him get dressed and leave the apartment.

“Hey,” Noct said, kneeling beside his lover on the tiled floor and absent-mindedly trailing a few fingers in the hot, shallow water. His voice echoed softly in the humid confines of the room.

“Hey,” Prompto responded wispily, sighing again and weakly opening his cobalt-blue eyes. “You getting in too?”

“You go first, you need it more,” Noctis sniggered, getting up again with a groan of pain and fetching the cream from a sleek black cabinet on the wall. “Lean forward.”

The blond obliged with a faint rush of water, and began swirling his hands playfully in the tub, lightly splashing. Reaching for a dark purple bottle on the side of the bath, he poured a considerable amount under the gushing tap, watching happily as thick, luscious violet bubbles and foam started birthing from the tumult under the faucet.

Sniffing the heady, musky-floral scent before replacing the bottle on the side, Prompto closed his eyes again just as Noctis knelt and started gently washing the friction burns on his back, which looked extra sore and pink in the steamy heat of the bathroom. The Prince merely used his hands, scooping and splashing water over the scrapes, trying to avoid any more irritation. When he was done, he grabbed a small towel and dried off the freckled shoulderblades so that he could apply the cream.

“Don't get this wet,” he warned, encouraging the blond to scoot back so that he could sit up straight and resist sliding down horizontally into the water. He applied the balm as carefully as he could, giving his partner a kiss on the top of his head as he finished.

“Thanks dude,” Prompto replied dreamily, adjusting himself in the water, finally turning the taps off with heat-wrinkled fingers.

“Don't go to sleep, kay?” Noctis chuckled, ruffling his partner's hair and earning himself a little noise of dissent.

“Isn't that my line? And don't mess my hair up,” Prompto scowled mischievously.

“Trust me, it's already messed up. You look like you've just had sex with a Behemoth.” Now that he thought of it, he hoped that Prompto would be able to make himself presentable before he went to see Ignis.

Prompto immediately grimaced. “Ack, Noct, enough with the mental images! And man, a Behemoth? You wish,” he winked.

Noct huffed a little laugh. “Want more coffee?”

“Actually...yeah. Thanks.”

“No problem,” Noctis shrugged. “Love you.”

“Love you too,” Prompto replied, opening his heavy eyes and flashing him a bright, beaming grin.

Noctis felt his heart actually palpitate roughly in his chest, and he swallowed down a heady burst of affection, almost laughing to himself with the joy of it. Giving the blond a final kiss on the lips, he left him to his well-deserved bath, and went to plot his next move.


 

An hour later, Prompto was dry and clean and dressed again, his hair a little damp and his new wounds safely medicated under his Moogle T-shirt. Noctis, too, was dressed, as elaborately as he ever did at home, in a fresh black hoodie and tracksuit bottoms. He had opened the blinds and a few windows in the living area, allowing bright, cool sunshine to flood in and highlight dust motes floating in the morning air.

“We gotta swap next time. My ass can't even right now,” Prompto said as he sipped his coffee at the kitchen island, enjoying the spring breeze through the open windows.

“Fine by me,” Noct replied, toying with his own mug and trying not to let the caustic burn of anxiety in his mind and body show. Any moment now, Ignis would summon Prompto from the apartment, leaving the Prince to fulfil the next, crucial part of his plan. If he chickened out now, he would have to plan it all over again. If he didn't, there would be no stopping the chain of events that would follow.

Seconds later, the underwhelming 'ping' of Prompto's text alert was as monumental and horrifying a sound as Noctis had ever heard.

“Ooh, Iggy texted!” the blond chirped, picking up his phone and unlocking it, intrigued. “He doesn't text me, like, ever. Hmm...he wants to talk to me at the Palace......sounds bad.” Noctis watched his freckled face fall and then twitch with imminent distress.

“Don't worry about it,” he was quick to comfort him, reaching across the marble island and stroking his forearm. “Probably just about that Crownsguard stuff you were looking into.”

“You think? I'm nowhere near that level, dude,” Prompto chuckled. “Unless maybe you put in a good word for me?” he winked.

“Trust me, my word counts for nothing at the Palace,” Noctis laughed, loud and sweet. “Is he coming to pick you up?”

“Nah, he's sending a car over.”

“Ah, right. I got some paperwork to do here. You'll be okay? We'll maybe do some cooking and watch a movie when you get back. We got the whole day.”

The chances of actually doing either of those things, given the upcoming circumstances, were fairly small, and Noctis felt a twinge of guilt about the white lie. He didn't know whether to feel better or worse when Prompto beamed.

“Yeah, that'd be awesome. We got stuff for lasagna, how does that sound? And I kinda fancy an action movie! Okay! Let's do this thing,” the blond asserted to the room, pumping his fist energetically. Noctis grinned, helplessly in love, and watched his partner trot off to fix his hair and find some shoes and his jacket.

As Prompto departed, the Prince suffered a sudden, icy shiver of anxiety that rocked him motionlessly, making him feel queasy. Seeing faint stars in the corner of his vision and feeling distantly dizzy, he tried to take a deep breath, but only managed one that was shallow and feathery. He wondered if this was what a panic attack felt like.

Prompto was ready in no time at all, swooping up behind him as he sat on his barstool and hugging him tight, nuzzling his nose into the long, sleek black hair at the back of Noct's neck and making a humming noise of pleasure. He didn't seem to notice the Prince's imminent meltdown.

“Love you dude. Be back soon.”

“Love you too. So much,” Noct murmured almost without thinking about it, and he blushed at the unusually vocal burst of sentiment. Turning his head, he let Prompto tuck his face close and smooch his cheek, delighting in the soft, warm pressure of his boyfriend's lips and the heated gust of air as he giggled.

“Sap,” Prompto told him, grinning.

“Dork,” Noctis replied softly, sighing against his partner's skin.

 


 

After Prompto had vacated the flat, Noctis gave himself five minutes just in case the blond had forgotten anything and needed to return, and also to ensure that he wasn't actually going to pass out. Finally, standing up on fear-wobbly legs and clenching his fists in anticipation of putting the next stage of his plan into action, the Prince headed for the darkroom. Opening the door, retrieving the pretty shopping bag, and carefully upending it on the coffee table was the work of a moment, and the start of a lifetime.

 


 

It took Noctis longer than he anticipated to complete his task, but it was still only 45 minutes later that he was settling into his own bath, using the same dark purple bubble bath and soaking in absolute bliss. His eyes were closed more often than they were open, peeking occasionally at his phone on the black tile at the side of the tub. He hadn't received any messages from his boyfriend, which was unusual. He wondered what Ignis had planned for his diversionary tactic, and he suffered a sudden, swooping jolt of panic that maybe his advisor had taken it upon himself to randomly educate Prompto on certain aspects of royal protocol. Weddings and marriage, for example.

Shit,” he whispered into the steamy, humid air.

Still, he was unlike his partner in that he tended not to worry unduly about things that hadn't actually happened, and if he did, he didn't panic for very long. Prompto, on the other hand, could spend weeks or even months agonising over something that might not ever come to pass. Noctis preferred to burn bridges as and when he came to them. One bridge in particular, of course, was approaching at alarming speed, but Noctis found that his worry came in waves; he oscillated between a cool numbness and disorienting terror.

He was massaging his sore and tender muscles, wondering at the amount of energy he was expending on sex these days. He was surprised he wasn't wasting away, and he was certain Prompto had nothing to worry about in terms of putting weight on.

Relaxed and soothed as he was, when his phone finally pinged, he took a few seconds longer to pick it up than his thrill of fear dictated.

 

Hey we've gone shopping lol just stopped for snacks. Iggy's being kinda weird but its fun haha. what ya up to? Wish I was there! - P

 

Massively relieved that Ignis had apparently not taken it upon himself to give the blond The Talk that he felt Noctis was avoiding, the Prince sat up a little in the bath. It was a futile effort, he slid back down the tub and mostly under the warm, frothy, violet bubbles. Giving up the fight, he texted back eagerly with damp, heat-wrinkled fingertips.

 

Thought you would be training ha – N

 

Yeah he was going to but saw me limping shit! HAHA – P

he says ur in trouble – P

 

worth it (⌐■_■) - N

 

ikr (⌐■_■) - P

 

whys he being weird – N

 

I dunno hes acting kinda like he wants to say something but isnt. And asking about you and how we're getting on and stuff - P

 

Noctis felt a twinge of alarm at this.

 

what did you say? - N

 

that ur a terrible boyfriend who's always either asleep or crippling my ass for life – P

 

sounds about right - N

 

lol j/k I love you loads - P

 

you too sweetheart x – N

 

its so hard to tell if youre being sarcastic when its in a text – P

 

not being sarcastic ha buy me something nice – N

 

what do I get in return – P

 

i'll bottom tonight ;) – N

 

LOL! As if you dont like it best that way. Kay deal Ill find something chocolaty – P

 

Another stab of panic penetrated Noct's peace, and he could only silently pray that Prompto wasn't anywhere near the chocolate shop, and if he was, that his boss would keep quiet about Noct's little escapade as she had promised. Between her and Ignis, there were two potential spanners in the works, and he fought hard to maintain his cool. He sent back a slightly desperate text.

 

Dont worry bout that just come home safe – N

 

You know youre kinda sweet youd make someone a good husband someday lol – P

 

Noctis thought his heart might have actually catapulted itself up into his throat from the shock of exhilarated nausea he felt as he read that text. 'Someday' might be a lot closer than Prompto thought.

 

 

 

Chapter Text

“How is His Highness?” Ignis asked Prompto with a small smile, as they sat in a compact, expensively-hipster tea café. Ignis sipped chai latte, his companion was enjoying a green tea at their table crowded into one corner. The blond put his phone down self-consciously after his texting bout with the Prince, and ducked his head in apology.

“Sorry! Being totally rude there. He's cool, he says we're gonna cook and watch a movie tonight. Sweetness!”

The advisor smiled, beneficently watching the blond fidget. Prompto was clearly a little nervous, unused to being alone in his presence, but he was as cheerful and chatty as ever. Ignis suspected that both of those things were defence mechanisms for stressful and social interactions. It certainly wasn't his intention to intimidate the younger man, so he tried his best not to.

“I apologise again for postponing the training session. Some of the new weapons really are something. In particular, I think the long-range options will be good for you to examine. I hear you excel at the use of firearms?”

“Uh, well, you know, too much time in the arcade, I guess,” Prompto laughed bashfully, scratching his head. He prudently decided against pointing out the fact that the training had only been postponed because Noct had shagged him half to death, and that Iggy had nothing whatsoever to be sorry for.

“I disagree, I think you have natural talent. Noctis spent as much time as you at the arcade and he's nowhere near your level.”

“Thanks! I'll definitely check them out next time,” the blond grinned, fiddling with his mug and nearly knocking it over.

“...So, do you have any plans for the future? Do you think you'd consider continuing the training, perhaps officially joining the Crownsguard?” Ignis asked, sipping his foamy latte.

“Eh...I...don't really know,” Prompto admitted. “I like my photography and the shop, you know? I guess it started as a stop-gap while I figured out what to do with my life, but I do enjoy it. It's not glamorous, but I get all the free chocolate that Noct could possibly wanna eat,” he chuckled. “Photos and stuff I can do in my spare time, same as the training. I used to think...I used to think that you were going to make me leave Noct. Not you personally, but people at the Palace. People in charge. Even before we were dating, I figured that there was no place for me in his life. We were friends at school, sure, but after that, I thought he would do his thing and I'd...well, I just had this mental image of armed guards literally barring access to him, crossing their swords across his door. And then quietly kicking me outta town with a bunch of threats, and telling Noct I'd been hit by a bus and killed or something,” the blond laughed, though he looked utterly distraught. “Thought I'd never see him again. Which is why I started training. I wanted to get stronger so I could work for him, a guard or a solider. I wanted to stay close to him and I thought that was the only way. And even though Noct says that no-one's gonna try and separate us now, I still kinda worry. Anything could happen, you know? That's why I still do the training whenever I can. Just in case. Sorry, totally rambling now, I'll shut up,” Prompto chuckled again, looking down at the table and going silent.

Ignis was gobsmacked. Apart from the fact that the depth of the younger man's paranoia really was troublingly impressive, he hadn't expected quite such an unprovoked outpouring of honesty, and his heart softened at Prompto's obvious devotion to the Prince.

“I...I didn't know you felt that way. I'm sorry.” Before Prompto could refute his apology, he raised a hand and continued. “I promise, right here and now, that you have nothing to fear from any armed guards, the council, or anybody else. You and Noctis are more or less common knowledge at the Palace, and I hope you can rest a little easier knowing that the relationship has the blessing of the King too. I happen to know that he thinks very highly of you.”

“...For real?!” Prompto asked, dumbstruck.

“For real,” Ignis answered, smiling warmly.

“I barely even know His Majesty,” Prompto shrugged, eyes going unfocussed as his memory wandered back to the few times he had met King Regis. “...You say everybody knows about us? And they don't wanna kick my ass for corrupting Noct?”

“Even if anybody truly disapproved, it was Noctis who chose you. His Highness isn't an easy person to corrupt,” Ignis chuckled. “He takes after his father; loyal and steadfast.”

“...Yeah,” Prompto said quietly, looking down at the dregs of his tea. “That's something, I guess. Still...until Noct gets married, I'm screwing them out of a bloodline. They've gotta hate me. One way or another, I'm on borrowed time.”

Ignis stared at him, and then closed his eyes slowly, trying to calm himself. Noctis. He obviously hadn't said a single word to Prompto. If he hadn't pledged his life to serve the Prince, he would be tempted to go to the apartment and strangle him himself.

“You okay Iggy?” the blond asked, peering at him.

“Yes, I...I'm fine.” Clearly, he had much to do, in little time, as delicately as possible. His work, truly, was never done.

“I'll just be a minute, call of nature!” The chirpy blond stood and ambled off through the busy café, looking for the bathroom.

Ignis watched him go, and then rapidly texted his ward under the table.

 

Noct, I've said it before and I'll say it again. You will be the death of me. - Ignis

 

The reply appeared twenty seconds later.

 

Huh? - N

 

Ignis sighed deeply and removed his glasses, rubbing at his temples and putting his phone away, fully intent on letting the confused Prince wonder what he had done wrong this time. When Prompto appeared again a few minutes later and sat down with a bright, wide smile, the advisor cleared his throat and addressed him.

“Prompto, do you have anybody to talk to?”

The younger man paused at the surprising question, his expression guileless and slightly pathetic. The rumble of muted conversation and the vague tinkle of cutlery and chinaware in the café continued to buzz around them. “Talk to?”

“...About problems. About anything, really. Apart from Noctis, is there anyone you can confide in?” Ignis shrugged.

“I, uh...I guess not,” the blond laughed awkwardly. “......Why?” he added softly.

“If you ever have need of advice or simply someone to listen...someone who isn't so intimate that openness might be detrimental in some way...then you can always talk to me. Alright?”

Prompto stared at him, his freckled face open and sweet and full of awe. “...Alright. Thankyou,” he said honestly, his façade of overt optimism slipping a little to a gentler, warmer, more genuine calm.

“So...did Noctis tell you he would have to get married?” Ignis asked carefully, as Prompto started plucking at his napkin, creasing it irrevocably. The surreal irony of the question, on this day, at this time, was almost enough to make Ignis' head spin. He felt slightly ill.

“Not exactly, but I know how it works, we learned about it in school. Everybody knows about the Crystal and stuff - he's gotta have kids and continue the bloodline, right? Like any other king, I guess, even the ones who aren't magic...” The blond scratched his head thoughtfully as he sought confirmation.

“Well, yes, but...” Ignis let out a sharp breath, aggravated. “...Noctis hasn't told you anything about his duty beyond that? About his actual plans?”

“Well...no, I figured it goes without saying,” Prompto laughed. “Guard the Crystal, have some babies, keep the peace,” he ticked them off on his fingers. “Noct doesn't like to talk about it, he says it depresses him. I've kinda come to terms with it, anyway. The fact that he's gonna be King and like, protect the whole world is way more important that him and me being...y'know.”

“That really isn't the case!” Ignis told him sharply, hitting his palm down on the tabletop in frustration, his voice raised. He immediately deflated with guilt when he saw the blond flinch at his outburst and shrink back, as did one or two neighbouring customers. The advisor took a stabilising breath and apologised. “I'm sorry, Prompto. It's not you I'm angry at. The fact of the matter is, your boyfriend is an utter moron,” the advisor stated simply.

Prompto laughed nervously. “...I think I'm missing something here, Iggy, you've kinda lost me.”

Ignis shook his head briefly to clear it, and then reached across the small table, taking Prompto's hands in his own and clasping them firmly. Cobalt blue eyes went wide, staring at him.

“Do you care about Noctis?”

“Yeah, of course,” Prompto replied with a gulp, casting his eyes briefly to the handful of spectators around the café who were surveying the strange scene. As he wavered under Ignis' fiery gaze, he was briefly reminded of the imagined official threats that he had just been talking about, the idea of which had haunted him ever since he realised he was in love with his best friend.

Ignis nodded cursorily, having expected no other answer. “And I know he loves you very deeply too. You will forgive my mysterious manner and what must seem like intractable reticence, but I can say very little at this time. Certain things are afoot, and frankly, Noctis has not kept you as well-informed as I, or anybody else, would have liked. In fact, he seems to have told you almost nothing of particulars that involve...aspects of his royal duties. But I can assure you whole-heartedly that if all goes well, you will not have to leave Noct. Not ever, if that is what you wish.”

Prompto gasped, having ceased wondering what 'intractable reticence' meant just in time to catch the end of Ignis' small speech. He swallowed again, a cautious hope rising in his throat and making his eyes water.

“Not ever?”

Ignis released Prompto's hands and nodded in affirmation. “That's what I'm saying. And it's what Noctis should have said, too.” The blond watched Ignis' green eyes flicker as though some kind of rage bomb was going off inside his head at the mere mention of the wayward Prince's name.

“...You sound like you really wanna go full Mortal Kombat on Noct's ass,” Prompto managed to chuckle, still feeling a little choked up and determined that he wasn't going to cry.

“You have no idea.” There was less humour in Ignis' words than the blond had expected, and he decided not to provoke the advisor's silent fury any further.

“Welp, I still mostly have no idea what you're talking about or what's going on, but I do feel better knowing all that. Thanks, Iggy. And I believe you.”

“I should hope so,” the advisor responded, finally cracking a wry smile.

“Have, uh...have we got time to make a detour? I kinda wanted to buy Noct a little something.”

Biting his tongue, aware that rewarding the miscreant Prince would only reinforce his bad behaviour, Ignis acquiesced nevertheless. “Of course. Anything in particular in mind?”

“Well, I was planning to treat him to something nice anyway, I've been saving my wages a bit. Y'know, one of those 'just because' presents. I'd been debating, but after everything you said, you helped me make up my mind,” Prompto told him with a sweet, sunny grin.

“You may lead the way,” Ignis smiled, gesturing briefly out the window towards the shopping precinct behind them.

They finished their drinks, making enjoyable small talk, leaving the serious topics behind. Once done, Ignis arranged their tray neatly and returned it to a staff member, whilst Prompto checked his bank balance on his phone with an indecipherable look on his face. They soon made their way outside the cramped café into a pleasantly cool, damp grey day.

The advisor was glancing down the street, planning possible routes to their next destination, when he was startled by strong arms around his torso and a happy blond hugging him enthusiastically.

“Thanks, Iggy! I feel a lot better now!"

Ignis laughed a little at the déja vu he felt, harking back to the same hug of gratitude delivered by the Prince not very long ago. He gave the same honest answer he had before.

“My pleasure.”

 

~*~*~

 

Chapter Text

Iggy sent me a weird text I think he wants to beat me up- N

 

I think ur right lol! Im at front door see you in a sec x - P

 

Noctis gasped, feeling the tingle of blood draining from his face, a fizz of terror electrifying his veins. There was no going back now. He stared at the fine pixels of the message from his barstool at the kitchen island, and didn't know what to do.

He didn't have much time to fully appreciate his own mute panic, because in minutes Prompto was pushing through the front door, holding a silvery gift bag and glowing with amusement, a fantastic grin on his face, his eyes crinkling almost closed. Noctis sighed with helpless adoration, swallowing down a throb of affection.

“Hey dude! Close your eyes a sec, I bought something secret. No peeking!”

Noctis stared at him, watching the blond fold his arms and attempt to look stern until the Prince obeyed and covered his own eyes with his hands. Maybe it would have saved a lot of trouble if he had just done the same thing with his own secret purchase. He heard Prompto trot off in the direction of one of the kitchen cupboards, and couldn't help wonder what he was hiding, and where. They both rummaged through those cupboards on a daily basis, so it wasn't exactly the most secure place.

“Kay, you're safe,” came Prompto's voice, nearby and getting nearer. Upon opening his eyes again, Noctis grinned at the sight of the familiar freckled face, and reached out, pulling it towards him so that he could kiss it.

The smooch deepened pleasurably, until the blond placed a tender hand on Noct's cheek and pulled back a little.

“Gods, what a trippy morning. Iggy wants to kick your ass but he won't tell me why.”

“I, uh...I think I know why,” Noctis muttered, gnawing on the inside of his cheek.

“You're both keeping secrets from me. I feel so left out,” Prompto laughed, stepping back and kicking his shoes off, unzipping his jacket.

Noctis tried to ignore the sizzle of anxiety in his body, thrumming in his joints, making all his arteries ache.

“...It's a good secret,” he offered weakly, though the more he considered his concealment of the finer details of his plan from his own lover, the more unwise it seemed to him to have done so. It hit him like a sledgehammer in the dark how woefully unprepared he was. In all of about three seconds, he came to regret utterly his decisions over the past week. He hadn't even brought the topic up as a hypothetical, casual chat. He had wanted to make it all a big surprise for the blond, but he suspected that it was going to backfire. Horribly. And now, with the means of his proposal dotted around the apartment in a multitude of innocuous hiding places, waiting to be found by his partner, there was not a single thing he could do about it.

“So you keep saying,” the blond grinned, moving close to him again and draping his arms over Noct's shoulders, knocking their foreheads gently together. “But when Iggy gets involved, you can bet your butt it's serious.”

“Did he...did he tell you anything?” Noctis physically winced, dreading the answer and feeling pathetic at having to express his fear so openly. Still, it would be better to know than not know.

“A lot of vague crap about you being King. But one good thing came of it! He seems to think we can be together longer than I thought. Until you get sick of me, that is,” Prompto chuckled, rubbing their noses together. “I mean, I believed him and everything. But maybe he was just saying that 'cos he felt sorry for me. Doesn't want me to go throw myself under a train the minute some hot princess gets sent your way.”

“Prompto, listen,” the brunette told him firmly, his expression soft and defeated. He was both saddened and irritated at hearing his boyfriend talk about himself so carelessly. “It's you and me, okay? Always. Don't you believe me?” he beseeched.

“Yeah, I do. But...Noct, half the stuff in your life is out of your control, you know? You're gonna get forced to do a lot of things you don't want to do. You're always telling me that already happens,” the blond shrugged, pulling back a little and bewitching Noctis with his calm, winsome gaze.

“This is different,” Noctis urged, feeling altogether helpless. He knew, to some extent, that Prompto was absolutely right, and was echoing his exact same fears. His pessimism didn't run nearly as deep or strong as his boyfriend's, but he held a very healthy scepticism that neither Ignis nor his father had been able to entirely dispel. His feelings for Prompto were completely, one hundred percent real; he was wildly in love with the man, and prepared to move heaven and earth to spend the rest of his life with him. But he knew that on some small, quiet, vindictive level, he wanted this because he needed to make his own choice for once, to rebel, to call the shots in an environment where he had been systematically repressed since childhood, at the same time that the people around him pampered and praised him to ease the burden of his enchainment.

“Okay, I got it,” Prompto nodded peaceably. “I guess all this stuff will become clear in time. I hope! Or I'm gonna go crazy,” he chuckled. “So, you ready to cook? I don't mind doing all of it if you just wanna chill! Lasagna still okay with you?”

As he spoke, the blond was going to the cutlery drawer to look for a wooden spoon, knife and other utensils he would be needing, but he was startled when Noctis swept up behind him, slammed the drawer, and turned him around against the counter with a look of ferocious panic in his eyes.

“Wait a bit,” the Prince begged, appearing as distraught as Prompto had ever seen him.

“What the-mmf,” the blond managed before Noctis forced a searing, desperate kiss to his mouth, deepening it with dizzying speed, groping him and dragging one strong hand through his hair. It was overwhelmingly good.

When Noct pulled back for air, he saw that Prompto's lips were sweetly kiss-bruised, his cheeks pink with surprise and arousal. The Prince gulped down the chaos of panic he had felt when Prompto had nearly found the first of his clues, realising that he was in no way ready for all of this to come to a head yet, as much, paradoxically, as he dearly wanted it to. With growing urgency, he distracted his partner with another hard kiss, and what he hoped was an irrefutable plea. He could imagine his own face as if he was looking at a photo of himself, and he saw blatant fear. Right now, however, he didn't have the luxury of caring about that, fixated as he was with trying to postpone the inevitable as long as he could. He had never felt so elated, so excited, so frightened in his life, and he had no idea how to deal with it.

“Make love to me. Please,” he murmured, his voice broken and husky.

This was another facet of his motive for marriage– genuine desire for his partner. Yes, he wanted to claim him, make him legally his. His own insecurity, though not as extreme as his lover's, was enough that he was fearful of Prompto being stolen away from him, regardless of his position, regardless of his best friend's obvious and undoubted feelings for him. Prompto was beautiful, funny, lovable, perfect; Noctis was certain that he was not the only person who saw him and coveted him. Right now, he wanted Prompto not to find the first clue. Right now, he also just wanted Prompto.

To his dismay, Prompto shook his head. “No. You're upset. I always want you to be happy when we have sex.”

“I...” the Prince replied, unable to refute this fact and feeling too shell-shocked to try and press the matter further.

“Maybe later you can tell me what's wrong, if you feel up to it? No pressure, though,” his best friend shrugged sweetly.

Noctis nodded dumbly and let his partner give him another kiss, and then watched as the blond turned and opened the drawer with no preamble or fanfare. Noct's dismay deepened when he watched Prompto take out the first clue, giving it the briefest of confused looks, and slide it carelessly onto the counter.

“You left some of your stash in here,” came the blond's thoughtful voice as he rummaged noisily through cutlery and various culinary tools. “Damn it, where's my spoon?”

“It's...it's not mine,” Noctis managed, staring helplessly. Prompto turned to frown at him, and then picked up the palm-sized piece of chocolate wrapped in colourless cellophane.

“It can't be mine, I hardly ever eat chocolate. I thought your stash was in the bedroom, though, so this one got lost,” the blond laughed, offering the candy in question to him.

Fuck's sake. “No, Prom,” Noctis tried, almost laughing in despair at the agony of the situation. “It's for you. It's part of the secret thing.”

“Uh...alright,” Prompto replied, appraising the chocolate in his hand, looking slightly baffled. “What is it?”

“What does it look like?”

“A circle,” the blond suggested, holding it up.

“Well...yes and no,” Noctis sighed, rubbing his forehead, the dormant twinge of a stress headache making itself rapidly known. “It's an O. A letter. And there are more of them.”

“Oh! O-kay, I get it now. Gods, I am such a bimbo,” Prompto chuckled. “So it's a treasure hunt, right? Find the letters and work out the message? How many are there?”

Noct's quiet anguish at the misunderstanding dissipated and left him heady with relief at Prompto's enlightenment.

“There are fourteen,” he told him, feeling calmer and happier, and almost in control of the situation again.

“It better not be too hard! You know I'm dyslexic, right?” the blond laughed heartily, merry tears in his eyes.

Damn it. Noctis hadn't forgotten exactly. He just hadn't remembered.

“...Eh, it should be fine, it's pretty simple,” Noctis said, sounding more confident than he felt. “But you gotta find them all first. And I'm not gonna give you any hints.”

“Hey, I don't need help! I totally got this,” Prompto nodded, pumping one fist in anticipation of victory. “This is gonna be fun. But dude, you and Iggy freaking the hell out over a chocolate hunt? You two are crazy,” he laughed affectionately. “There's no time limit, right? I can start dinner and we can watch the movie first?”

“Sure thing,” Noct agreed.

“And now you look like you're in a better mood, perhaps I can give you a nice, slow blowjob,” Prompto shrugged innocently, turning away from the Prince, but hearing the brunette's sharp, shocked aspiration and resultant coughing as he rooted through the deep cutlery drawer.

“I'll take that as a yes.” Sniggering to himself, the blond soon let out a bright, happy noise whilst Noctis was still recovering his breath. “Sweet! Found my spoon!”

 


 

Prompto was browning the meat with a deafening sizzle and humming along to his pop playlist that was playing loudly on the massive wall TV, whilst Noctis crashed on the sofa and played with his phone. He had repeatedly tried to help, but he had ended up getting underfoot, and his partner had insisted on soldiering on alone. Except, of course, that Prompto adored cooking, and was more than happy to do it all himself.

The cool mid-afternoon had turned tumultuous and harsh, arrhythmic rain battered the windows behind closed blinds. The apartment, as a result, was snug and gloomy, just the way Noctis liked it best. Prompto hadn't found any more clues, but then again, he hadn't been looking for them. The Prince felt far calmer at the prospect of their discovery now than he had a little while ago, and he kept finding a silly smile creeping back onto his face as he scrolled absently through his phone.

His heart plummeted when Ignis finally got back in touch with him. He wondered briefly why Ignis hadn't been blowing up his phone with messages since he and Prompto parted ways earlier.

 

What is the current situation, Noct? And why didn't you tell him anything when it was clearly in your own interest? - Ignis

 

Noctis rolled his eyes, his face flushed as if he were being reprimanded in person, and tried to word his reply as succinctly as he could.

 

I wanted it to be a surprise. If I started casually talking about marriage n stuff he might have said that he didn't want it or believe in it or he might have freaked out and want to split up or something. - N

 

So you chose to just propose instead?! - Ignis

 

Noctis could see the dichotomy, he really could. He also knew that he could have handled the whole thing a lot better. For one thing, he had absolutely no clue as to Prompto's stance on marriage, royal or otherwise. It was something they had never found cause to talk about, whether seriously, jokingly or in passing, including before they were dating. They knew about and had compared their own parent's courtships and relationships, but that was all, and no particular opinions had been aired one way or the other.

But, Noct had pretty much dug his way into a deep hole and even if he wanted to change things now, it was too late. Better to just muddle through at this point. He tried to convey this in slightly more mature terms to his advisor.

 

I think it's gonna be okay. Once I've asked him and he answers I'll fill him in. Its not like im gonna force him or say we have to do it like RIGHT NOW. And its all gonna be good news for him I mean it sounds like you already spilled the beans today anyway -_- - N

 

You know that isn't the case, I haven't spoiled the surprise. But the poor boy was so disillusioned and resigned to being taken away from you, and you had done nothing to reassure him despite having ample knowledge at your disposal. His heart had clearly been broken at some point by the prospect of your separate futures. It has mended a little, but it's up to you to make it better, Noct. On a lighter note, has he found any of them yet? - Ignis

 

He found the first one we gonna eat dinner nxt – N

 

I wish you all the luck. And Noctis, if you don't tell him this time exactly what he's getting into, then I will. - Ignis

 

The threat could hardly even be described as veiled, and Noctis sighed to himself as he thumbed his reply.

 

I know. I get it. I don't want him hurt or scared any more than you do. But im still low-key terrified – N

 

Have you changed your mind? - Ignis

 

Never. - N

 

Then you have nothing to fear. - Ignis

 

The Prince heard liquid being poured into the pan of sizzling beef somewhere behind him, and the sound deadened to a soft, meaty bubble. Prompto started talking, so Noctis hastily pocketed his phone and twisted around on the sofa to watch his boyfriend at work. Catching another glimpse of him wearing the royal-black apron made his heart hurt with affection.

“So I figured that you must have got the chocolate from my shop, right? I didn't recognise it at first,” Prompto said, glancing over his shoulder and offering an amused grin.

“Yeah, I just took the outer packaging off. There was a shit-ton of unnecessary plastic on that,” Noctis replied.

“I know,” Prompto agreed solemnly. “I actually emailed the area manager and said about that. Customers have been mentioning it too.”

“My little eco warrior. Look at you,” Noctis cooed, his adoration only semi-affected.

“Aren't you gonna ask about your present?” the blond teased him.

“Oh yeah, I forgot. I bet you're not gonna tell me.”

“Correct! I'm entitled to my own secrets sometimes, dude,” he laughed. “Anyway, I want to pretty it up and put the Prompto mark on it before I give it to you.”

“The 'Prompto mark?' What's that, a bunch of kid's chocobo stickers plastered all over it?” Noctis smirked.

“Ooh, that's low, Noct, that's really low. Those stickers make everything better. Maybe I won't give it to you at all.”

“Yeah you will.”

“You are really pushing your luck now. At this rate you won't get a present or a blowjob.”

“Okay. I'll behave. That last thing is too good to pass up,” Noctis admitted, and Prompto blushed, chuckling.

“You know it.”

“Can I have a hint, though?” the Prince asked hopefully.

“Eh, well, let's just say it's a good job Iggy was with me. He knows so much random knowledge about everything, he helped me pick it out. And he knows you inside out, down to the weirdest little detail.”

Noctis was not comforted by this. “What? Why, what did he say?” he asked somewhat urgently.

“Nothing kinky, don't worry,” the blond grinned. “I can't say any more, sorry.”

Noctis let out a dramatic sigh of discontent, and crossed his arms. “Cruel. So anyway...once that stuff's in the oven, we'll have time to make out, right?”

“Gods, you make it sound so seedy,” Prompto whined.

“Blowjobs on the couch are always gonna be seedy,” Noctis shrugged.

“Yeah, you're right,” Prompto acquiesced, putting on a mournful expression before bursting out with a giggle. “Gimme ten minutes, then we can put the timer on, and I'm all yours.”

“Forever?” Noctis asked, his overt playfulness containing a core of vulnerability.

“Ever at your side,” the blond nodded, giving him a surprising, endearing wink, and turning back to the stove.

 

 

Chapter Text

“You weren't kidding – about going – agh, s-slow,” the Prince managed to seethe out, blinking hair from his half-closed eyes, his voice wheezy and halting with his breathlessness.

Mmmm,” Prompto agreed wordlessly from between his legs. Noctis shuddered hard at the vibrations, his teeth clacking together briefly before he gritted them, clenching his jaw. Squirming weakly against the corner of the sofa where he was sprawled, he adjusted his right palm, his sweating skin skidding and squeaking on the expensive black leather armrest. His left hand was squeezing into Prompto's hair, mostly unconsciously, though every now and then he remembered to try and loosen his grip to avoid hurting his lover.

The blond was on his knees on the floor, busy in Noct's lap, where the Prince's black tracksuit bottoms and underwear were pulled down only far enough to grant access to his cock, and the contrast between his milky-pale skin and the dark fabric was startling. Prompto had scooped one hand slightly awkwardly under his testicles, and was randomly rolling and fondling their swollen weight like blood-hot stress balls. The other was gripping the base of his slick shaft with almost telepathically-perfect pressure.

The Prince's boyfriend didn't go down on him very often, but it wasn't because either of them disliked it. On the contrary, they both enjoyed both giving and receiving (apart, of course, from that one time that the Prince would rather blot from his memory). It was just that they were still in an experimental phase in their relationship, and the sheer scope of things that they liked to enjoy together left less occasion for each individual act. Besides, both of them liked, when possible, to include penetration in their sex, because the unsurpassable intimacy was mutually treasured, and quite often they ended up in that position rather spontaneously, with little or no extra foreplay.

Noctis would readily admit that Prompto had become very skilled at oral sex, very quickly. The blond was a master of stealth attacks and speedy dispatch, usually a whipcrack orgasm only minutes after Noct vacated the shower or before he was due to leave the apartment. It wasn't that Prompto's technique was particularly hasty, but Noct's climaxes always were.

Right now, though, instead of his usual breakneck, swiftly-concluded ministrations, his partner was doing nothing less than torturing him. The brunette had been brought, shivering, to the very brink of his orgasm three times now, and he swallowed groggily, groaning aloud. He let his head fall upon the back of the sofa, the sensation of his sweat-damp hair crushing against his occiput slightly unpleasant. A feverish sort of chill ran through him as he tremored near his peak again, the cool air of the apartment balming his blisteringly-hot face.

“Prompto...Gods, please let me,” he begged, far too advanced in his desperation to even consider being embarrassed. He was very, very tempted to cheat and snake his fingers down to his cock, rubbing one out just to mercifully get it over with, but he suspected that this was going to be worth the wait, and he wanted to see how the blond would play out his denouement.

“Mm-mm,” came the calm, negative response, and as Prompto shook his head in disagreement, the Prince's cock bounced sweetly against the inside of the blond's cheeks. Noctis growled, his deep and husky voice breaking as his climax ebbed away again once the fresh vibrations had ceased.

It was nearly another ten minutes before Noct was allowed to come, and he felt like it wasn't a second too soon. His mouth hung open to allow him to gasp in dry, stuttering inhales, and his whole body was damp, and trembling, and hot to the touch. He could see through bleary eyes that Prompto's expression was focussed, a frown on his face, probably in pain from kneeling for so long and working his jaw so assiduously. Noct's tracksuit bottoms and hoodie had been dragged off and flung away, and Prompto was similarly naked.

The Prince felt that he couldn't have held back his orgasm even if his partner pulled off and abandoned his pleasure right now. He was very nearly at the point of no return, and the desperate anticipation of his long-awaited release had almost turned into fear of how intense it was going to be.

Prom...Prom,” he hissed, the muscles in his legs sore from endless shifting and clenching, and the fruitless and urgent pumping of his hips reaching a swift, almost violent peak of speed. He found no resistance, looked down again at Prompto's red face and saw the blond give him a slow blink of permission. With a feral yell of relief, Noctis let his head fall back, eyes tightly closed, and thrust as hard as he dared into his boyfriend's throat. Cupping the back of his head roughly, he was nearly suffocated by the delight of sloppy sighs and slick squelches as Prompto ably deep-throated him.

Coming...coming!” the Prince managed to wheeze, muscles all through his body contracting with what felt like bone-breaking power, forcing his limbs to a brief, utter stillness, before his orgasm blessedly crested, feeling like the freezing pressure of an ocean current washing throughout his tortured body. His eyes opened and stared wildly, seeing the ceiling through his dizziness, before he was compelled to squeeze them shut again to try and endure the orgasm obliterating his senses.

A different sort of panic shocked through the punishment of his climax when he felt Prompto pull off of him, but when he peered down and saw the blond tugging at him with his hand, holding the jolting head of his cock against his tongue and smearing globs of fresh semen there with what appeared to be ecstasy, Noctis nearly came again. Prompto jerked him skilfully, aiming Noct's prick back against his stomach to watch the last sharp, musky spurts of seed splash there, glossing the brunette's abdomen and the base of his ribcage.

Mindlessly tripped out from his peak, Noctis winced and shuddered and sobbed, both hands now fisted as best as they could into the moist leather of the couch. His head had once more crashed back, his eyes closed, having utterly succumbed to his practically-tectonic aftershocks. There was no opportunity to speak, even if he had been able to in that moment, before the blond crawled onto his sticky lap, grasping hold of his shoulder for support and yanking at himself with his other hand. It took less than ten strokes before Prompto suffered his own climax, teeth gritted, skin sheened, belly quivering with effort. With a coarse, familiar and yet shocking yell of near-pain, Prompto's own blood-hot semen splashed to meet Noct's, watery fluid pooling randomly in dents of hipbone and lean muscle and dripping down to soak the couch.

The Prince was still shaking minutely by the time his boyfriend had rocked out his climax, grinding sinuously on his lap and making endless tiny, soft, delicious sounds of satisfaction. Noctis grabbed him with both arms and pulled him close, breathing raggedly against his wet skin and kissing randomly, biting to claim him, hugging tight to offer himself in return.

“...Prompto,” Noct finally managed to grunt after a long, wordless, sweat-steaming minute. “Gods, you're a fucking firework. I love you so much...you're incredible,” he muttered deliriously to the blond still nestled on his lap, who was nuzzling affectionately into his damp hair and burning neck.

“And you're beautiful...and perfect...I love you too,” Prompto whispered back, sighing peacefully and wriggling impossibly closer, desperate for an even tighter cuddle as they both enjoyed the surge of bliss hormones after their peaks, muttering to each other as if drunk.

It was a long while before either of them even considered disentangling from each other, as clattering rain continued to pound the apartment's unseen windows.


An hour later, after they had both recovered and cleaned up, they were back at the kitchen island, fully dressed, because they couldn't bear to look at the couch for a while. The television buzzed with soft music in the background. Prompto had turned off the oven as soon as he had been able to stand up and stumble to the kitchen, just in time to avoid burning their dinner. Noctis had thought he was going to throw up as soon as his hormone crash set in, and he had staggered away from the site of his devastation as rapidly as he could. His partner, who was slightly less wrecked, then volunteered to take care of the residual mess on the furniture and their bodies and it wasn't long before things were essentially back to normal.

“I'm going to die,” Noctis moaned in a small voice. He was slumped on the cool marble of the counter, looking spiritually troubled, and his head was pounding.

“I'm sorry, dude,” Prompto answered as he turned the oven back on to heat up the lasagna, before retrieving plates and cutlery. He did look partially apologetic, but there was a quiet glint of victory in his eyes. “I didn't think it would be so...y'know, crazy. It was so hot though! And damn, good thing I had the oven on low. You ready to eat?”

“Ugh,” Noctis replied succinctly, raising his head and sniffing the air. “...Yeah...I need some energy after that. Smells good.”

They were soon eating hungrily, the Prince making regular wordless sounds of appreciation, and Prompto too wolfed down his portion rapaciously. When they were nearing the end of the meal, the forkfuls of food slowing slightly on their way to being devoured, the blond cleared his throat and spoke carefully around his mouthful of pasta.

“So this treasure hunt,” he began, and Noctis gave him his full attention. “It's a romantic-type thing, right?”

“Mm-hm,” the brunette nodded, chewing his final mouthful. You could say that.

“Don't people usually do that kind of thing, like, in a park or something? Dotted around by the fountains and flowerbeds. Like in a TV drama.”

Noctis pulled a face, putting his knife and fork down. “If I had done that some dog or homeless guy would have found them and eaten them long before you got there. Or the rain would have got into the packets and melted them all to shit.”

The Prince was surprised and amused by Prompto's immediate cackle of laughter.

“Oh dude, wow. Way to bring things down. You're right, though, come to think of it,” his partner snickered. “I'm gonna try and find the rest tonight.”

Anticipatory fear dropped through Noct's chest like a cannonball. “Uh, sure. I mean...please.”

“I'm super-curious now,” the blond pondered, twiddling his fork, his eyes going distant as he lost himself in thought. “And they're all here, in the apartment?”

“Yeah, shouldn't be too hard. I do need you to actually find them, after all,” the Prince grinned.

“You need me to, huh? Definitely intrigued,” Prompto winked at him, before looking back to his plate and scooping up lasagna pensively. Across the counter, Noctis chewed on his thumb until he had almost drawn blood.

 


 

It was evening, and they were almost at the end of the Assassin's Creed movie, snuggled once more on the couch (“Couch of Death,” as Noctis had christened it). The rain outside had ceased, though it was forecast to start again and continue throughout the night. In the cool darkness of the apartment, the only light came from the massive wall television, and by its illumination Prompto occasionally looked down and fiddled with the second of his clues, a chocolate letter 'P.' It had been wedged amongst the Blu-rays in the sleek wall cabinet, and he had come across it by chance. Noct's arm was around him, and his boyfriend turned to peck him on the side of the head every now and then, giving his shoulders a fond and protective squeeze.

They were watching a rather lengthy scene with a lot of wordy and unnecessary exposition, when Prompto nudged his partner and spoke conspiratorially.

“So, I hear you have a phobia of blue toothpaste.”

“I...huh?” Noctis asked after a dumb pause, bemused. Both of them kept watching the screen.

“Ignis told me. When we were talking about you and all kinds of weird factoids were coming out,” Prompto chuckled.

“He did what...” Noctis muttered, mostly to himself, a half-hearted threat evident in his tone.

“I told you, it was nothing kinky. But I thought that toothpaste thing was super-cute and childish. Better than being scared of bugs like me.”

“I'm not scared of blue toothpaste!” Noctis retorted, indignantly. “It's just...weird. And unnecessary. And unnatural.”

“Yeah,” Prompto nodded sagely. “I prefer the natural white look toothpaste has when they farm it right outta the ground.”

“Shut up, dork,” the Prince tutted fondly, giving him a tiny head-butt and then kissing his hair. They watched the movie in silence for a few more minutes, before Prompto stretched elaborately and stood up.

“This bit's kinda boring. Gimme a shout if he looks like he's gonna start, like, actually jumping off buildings and stuff. I'm continuing the search!” he announced, chuckling.

“Okay.” Noctis was distantly aware of his own curious calm, and as his partner trotted off, he focussed his complete attention on anticipating movie parkour, instead of on having a nervous breakdown because sooner or later, Prompto would have all fourteen letters in hand. Then, he would have to arrange them into the right phrase. If Noct had known the level of anxiety that the waiting would cause him, he would have just got down on one knee like a normal person, ripping the proverbial plaster off in one quick, reasonably-painless movement.

 


 

The movie was nearing the end, and Noctis had tried not to simultaneously scream and die a little inside every time he heard a distant “A-ha!” as another letter was found.

The Prince cleared his throat and called out to his boyfriend, who was pottering around in his darkroom.

“It's getting to a big fight scene. Think it's nearly over.”

“Kay! Oh man! Only two left! I can't even right now,” came the faraway-sounding, excitable chatter.

Two left. Shit shit shit.

Noctis glanced at the coffee table in front of him, where a rough pile of cellophane-wrapped chocolate letters were collected, ready to be deciphered.

“Wait, can you pause the film a second? I got another one! Nearly there!” came the hyper-sounding announcement.

The Prince grabbed for the remote with a visibly-shaking hand, almost knocking it to the floor. Pausing the movie with numb obedience, he stood up, making his way to the sound of Prompto's voice and feeling sickly dizzy.

“R-really?” he managed to ask, in a pathetic voice.

“Last one's gotta be here too. I've looked everywhere else,” the blond reasoned, getting into his knees and opening random boxes full of new photographic paper and bottles of chemicals. Noct stared helplessly at the penultimate box in the row, where he knew for a fact that a letter 'T' was nestling in his boyfriend's vintage camera case. It was only a minute or so before the blond located it, but it felt like even less, and the Prince was leaning his weight against the doorframe by that time, necessitated by his anxiety. When Prompto shrieked in victory, grabbing the innocuous little chocolate and thrusting it into the air like a trophy, he sucked in his breaths as carefully as he could, trying to dispel his light-headedness.

Noctis reeled a little when his partner gave him a brief, surprise hug, and managed not to stagger backwards.

“...Well done,” he murmured, managing to feel genuinely proud of Prompto's success despite the dominant and turbulent miasma of chaos in his own mind.

“Woo-hoo! Come on, let's catch the last fight and see if I can unscramble this thing. That's gonna be the hard part,” Prompto chuckled, before pulling back and giving Noctis a proper appraisal. “You don't look so hot dude, you feeling okay?”

“Yeah...I'll be fine when this is over,” the brunette nodded, huffing out a small and slightly hysterical laugh.

Prompto could be unexpectedly perceptive, and right now was a prime example. He raised a fair eyebrow, and gave Noctis a little chuck under his chin with his curled fingers, looking concerned.

“...This isn't just a dumb little treasure hunt, is it?”

Noctis could only shake his head mutely, his right hand raising to take hold of Prompto's wrist, giving it a loving squeeze, and then manipulating their hands into a tight link. The blond nodded in understanding, and gave his boyfriend's hand a squeeze in return.

“Come on, let's go do this thing,” Prompto cheered him, his cobalt eyes paradoxically dark and bright at the same time.

“...Let's go,” Noctis affirmed, feeling a little stronger.

 

Chapter Text

Neither Noctis nor Prompto were big drinkers, especially having only been legally able to do it very recently, but currently, the Prince was in the warm kitchen and casting his eye about for something to calm himself down a little. It occurred to him that the only suitable thing in the apartment was some Champagne in the back of the vast fridge that had been a gift from Ignis and was being saved for some vague and distant special occasion. Tempted as he was to open it, Noctis felt it would put an unbelievable jinx on the current situation. If and when he popped the cork, he wanted it to be in celebration, with Prompto. Right now, he didn't even know if his boyfriend was going to say 'yes.'

Behind him, Prompto was scooting the plastic-wrapped letters around on the coffee table with one finger, his chin clasped intently in one hand and a look of fearsome, frowning concentration on his face. The lighting in the room was so low that Noct almost had to squint to make out which letter was which.

Noctis sighed silently, giving up the search and scratching his head. Watching his boyfriend puzzle over the anagram and waiting for the outcome was truly tortuous. He stood listening to the battering evening rain on the apartment for a few seconds, before raising his voice slightly above the downpour.

“Uh...is it okay if I put on some music?” the Prince asked, going to sit snugly beside the blond on the couch and glancing over at his admitted lack of progress.

“Sure, no problem...man, this is hard,” Prompto laughed, sitting back a bit. He pulled out his cellphone, and Noctis glared at him in alarm. “I'm not cheating!” the blond assured him. “Just gotta write stuff down cos I keep forgetting what combinations I already tried.”

Feeling a little calmer, Noctis reclined, wedging his shoulder tightly against his partner and turning on a bass-filled instrumental rock playlist, which was accompanied by a swirly, bulbous, visceral-looking screensaver. It was something they usually listened to when they made love, and the Prince was gratified to notice the small smirk and blush appear on Prompto's face.

“You can't be horny again,” the blond murmured fondly.

“I can when I'm this close to someone so gorgeous,” Noct shrugged in return, getting a giggly nudge of reprimand from his boyfriend.

“Too cheesy, Noct. Right, I...I think I have a word. But I dunno, 'cos then the rest doesn't make sense.”

Holy shit, don't be THAT word, Noctis found himself screaming mentally, heart trip-hammering inside his ribs, and he was briefly surprised by his own semi-hysteria. Honestly, he wanted this to be over. He wasn't sure what was worse, waiting for the code to be solved, or the fact that after all this effort, he was potentially going to be rejected. He hadn't considered what on earth he would do if that were the case, but he was certain that it would be the closest thing to total grief he'd felt since his mother died.

“So my dyslexia's making this about fifty times harder, ha! But look, see...” Prompto nudged a few letters around and then pointed at the word he had discovered. Noctis stared at it.

 

ROOMMATE

 

The Prince almost lost it. He sucked in a long, long breath and let it out in a feathery sigh.

“It's...wrong, sorry.”

“Really?” Prompto asked in disbelief, looking totally crestfallen. “Aw man, I was proud of that...” He pouted and then rested his chin in his hand again, frowning at the pile of chocolate miserably.

“Why don't you take a break? You've been at it a while,” Noctis suggested.

“Yeah...yeah, good idea. Let's snuggle!” Prompto laughed, abruptly burrowing against his partner and smooching him relentlessly on the cheek.

Noctis giggled huskily, allowing the enthusiastic treatment. “No sex though, or I will literally keel over and die.”

“Could be worth it?” Prompto asked, nuzzling his fine, dark hair and hugging him.

“Not quite. If I died I wouldn't get to see you any more,” the Prince replied, in a voice that contained a notable tone of seriousness within his jocularity.

“Aw, but then you wouldn't have to deal with any of my crappy photographs hanging everywhere or all the vegetables in the fridge,” the blond snickered, turning the volume down on the rock song that was pulsing through the dark apartment. As he did, a surprise thunderclap exploded like dynamite outside the window, and both men jumped reactively, Prompto yelping and pressing his body harder against Noct. The Prince grinned and grabbed his partner, dragging him down on top of him in a weighty bundle of limbs. The simple sensation of his heat and heaviness was touchingly exciting.

“Your photos aren't crappy. They're amazing. And I know you know it too because they're pretty much the only thing in the world you're not insecure about,” Noct smirked fondly, enjoying the pleasantly-crushing, solid weight of his boyfriend above him.

“Ah, you got me there dude. I kinda like them,” the blond shrugged as best as he could from his precarious position, shifting his hips upon his partner's and almost overbalancing. Noctis caught his waist with one hand and steadied him, following up with a sharp smack on Prompto's backside, which earned him an unexpected, breathy noise of shock.

“Stop getting me all worked up again,” Noct dared to chide him, trying and failing to bite back his amusement. The indignant retort was immediate.

“Dude, what the hell, you're the one touching my ass,” Prompto giggled, lowering his head self-consciously. Noctis closed his eyes briefly and enjoyed the soft scent of the blond hair in his face, tickling his eyelids. When Prompto lifted his head again, none the wiser, he shimmied his weight a little, and the Prince winced slightly at a sharp hipbone poking his abdomen. The blond noticed his discomfort and sat up, and Noctis grudgingly followed suit. They were soon bundled next to each other again.

The pair were startled by a secondary smash of thunder preceding a rogue gust of wind, which drove sheets of rain brutally against the apartment windows with a messy spatter, before settling back into the steady, hissing gurgle of spring rainfall.

“You didn't have to move,” the Prince sulked playfully.

“Nah, I could see you were getting squished. Plus, I want you sitting up and able to see properly for this,” Prompto grinned.

For an instant, Noctis thought that maybe he was going to get a striptease, and his eyebrows raised, an intrigued blush tingling in his cheeks.

“Hey! I saw what you were thinking just now. No sex, I promise,” the blond smirked. “But...while I take a break from the puzzle, I wanna give you your gift, okay?”

Finding this a suitable substitute for a striptease (which he just knew he would not be able to get out of his mind now), the Prince nodded, before he was hit with a barrage of instructions from his rambling and clearly-nervous boyfriend.

“Right...I need you to not ask questions yet, okay, because I'll explain it when you see it. And it needs explanation because it's got a backstory and I want to be clear about it.”

Prompto abruptly got up and trotted to the kitchen cupboard where he had hidden his gift earlier in the day. Peering through the gloom, Noctis watched him rummage in an oversized white box and pull out the silvery gift bag, which he quickly hid behind his back.

“You hid it in your cereal bars?” the Prince asked incredulously, smiling.

“I knew you would never go anywhere near my 'hamster food.' You don't touch that diet stuff with a bargepole, especially when it's got raisins in it, which according to you are just pickled mouse poops.”

“Genius,” Noctis agreed whole-heartedly, feeling his expression soften with fondness, and he saw Prompto mirror him with a barely-visible flush and a little chuckle as he stood awkwardly in the kitchen.

“...Like I said, just hear me out til the end, okay? 'Cos otherwise you'll be confused and everything I say will sound totally weird and random.”

“Just like normal, then,” Noctis shrugged.

“Ack! You are this close to not getting a present, Noct,” Prompto threatened, pinching his finger and thumb tightly together to illustrate as he made his way to sit beside his boyfriend once more, bringing the item out from behind his back and holding it protectively in both hands.

As promised, the Prince didn't ask any questions, but he did eye the small, shiny bag with some curiosity. Prompto cleared his throat.

“Promise me, no interruptions?”

“Yeah, promise,” Noctis nodded distractedly, giving him an encouraging little nudge. “Tell me.”

O-kay,” Prompto nodded in satisfaction, taking a deep breath. “I'd been planning to get you a present and I had a bit of a browse when I was with Iggy. Like I said, he's like an encyclopaedia so he was super useful. I wanted something personal, so I was thinking...maybe your birthstone? Which Ignis said is a green one, can't remember what it's called. Peridot! That's it. Anyway, that seemed kind of wrong because no offence, but we agreed that green isn't really your colour. So I thought about your star sign. Which is apparently just a symbol of some random woman, and I didn't like that either,” Prompto chuckled.

Slightly bemused, Noctis nodded anyway, encouraging him to continue.

“Then Iggy said your birth flower is Gladiolus, of all things! But that was no good, because I wanted you to be reminded of me, not Gladio,” the blond said, still laughing fondly.

“Good thinking,” the Prince nodded, briefly wondering at the chances of that particular flower being apparently important to him. In an arbitrary, hipster-ish kind of way, of course – he didn't really go in for astrology or any of that stuff, but he humoured Prompto, not wanting to burst his bubble after he had clearly put some thought into this.

“And we kinda got into random talk about things that were specific to you, favourite animals and things like that. That's how we got to discussing your toothpaste phobia. It was a pretty enlightening conversation,” Prompto smirked, as Noctis rolled his eyes. “So, anyway, uh...I sorta think of you as watery, you know? 'Cos of your blue eyes, and the fact that you like fishing,” the blond shrugged, looking a bit embarrassed by his own simplistic explanation. “That's when we started getting on the right track. Suddenly I knew what I wanted to get you.”

Feeling like this long-winded and slightly backwards explanation was finally reaching some sort of climax, the brunette nodded again, his heart-rate picking up excitedly, even though vague mental images of bunches of fish-shaped flowers were now bobbing around in his head.

“So...Mother-of-pearl, right? It's pretty, it comes from the ocean so it's natural. And it's rare, and precious, and it looks royal,” Prompto said, blushing noticeably and looking suddenly more flustered. “Now, this is the bit where it's really important that you don't interrupt,” he added, clearing his throat. He finally lowered his gaze and opened his little gift bag, pulling away floaty silver ribbons and removing a small, square black box. He picked at the lid with shaky fingers, laughing breathlessly when he failed to open it twice.

The box was opened with a small pop, and Noctis found himself staring down at a ring.

It was a matte black metal band of fair thickness, with a big, flat oval cabochon of mother-of-pearl. The rainbow-shimmering white centrepiece was set in a steely grey square of metal with ornate, obscure geometric patterns etched into it. The overall effect was one of regal simplicity, and it was perfect.

“It comes with a chain. Ignis told me what size to get for your finger but I figured you'd maybe want to wear it under a shirt or whatever, not have it on show,” the blond hurried to assure him, and his speech hastened as he finished his clarification, the fine freckles on his face now totally masked by a rosy blush. He scratched his head in agitation and continued talking, more quietly, almost as if he hoped Noctis wouldn't quite hear what he was saying.

“I mean, that's if you like it at all. You don't have to keep it if you don't want it. Maybe I screwed up, I dunno,” the blond murmured, looking a little fretful. “...But, uh...it's a symbol. Of...of us, and how I feel about ya. In case anything happens, you know, what with your job and all...in case we're ever apart or we can't be together...well, it's just something to remind you that I'll always love you.”

A few times in his childhood, Noctis had fallen into deep water and been in there long enough to feel sick, and headachy, and with a numb and dizzying buzz in his ears when he emerged. Right now, he felt just like that all over again.

He stared at the robust but delicate ring in front of him. Despite instinctively knowing he should be conscious of more than the tiny pulse of blood he could feel twitching hotly in the back of his eyes or the choking dryness of his throat, he could do little more than keep staring.

Prompto pulled the ring from its foamy housing, and shakily moved to push it onto Noct's right forefinger.

Something dawned on the brunette, and he sucked in a short, sharp breath.

 

Ignis. Ignis had a part in this. And I know exactly what he did.

 

Even before he felt the budge of skin on his finger that indicated that the ring was too small, the Prince found himself speaking softly.

“It won't fit.”

Prompto's face fell heart-breakingly as the ring nudged to a premature stop. “...Ah...fuck, I just got the size Iggy told me...shit,” he whispered coarsely, tears shimmering in his eyes almost instantly. He looked completely distraught, and he floundered, lower lip wobbling.

“Right size. Wrong finger,” Noctis murmured, and he had never heard his own voice sound quite so strange – somehow robotic and tender at once.

His boyfriend frowned at him in confusion, his chin crinkled and one fat, translucent tear spilling over to drop from his high cheekbone. Automatically, Noctis thumbed away the warm wetness under Prompto's eye and then guided him to the ring finger of his left hand. He let out a wheezy breath of shock when he was proved right, and the ring slid flawlessly onto the digit, nestling there and looking like it was made for him.

“I...I'm confused. That's wrong, Iggy said...” Prompto mumbled, still frowning.

“It makes perfect sense. Iggy's a goddamn genius. Look, Prom. Look,” Noctis urged, finally escaping the vacuum of shock that he had been labouring in, mute and actionless, and he twisted to face the coffee table. He arranged the cellophane-wrapped letters into their correct order, solving the anagram, as quickly as he could manage in the low, reddish light from the wall TV screen.

“Look,” he whispered again, pointing a dangerously-shaky finger to the simple phrase that was now spelled out.

 

MARRY ME PROMPTO

 

The blond clamped both hands hard over his own mouth, eyes wild and glaring with intense bewilderment. The tight, strangled cry he made into his own palms would have been funny, if Noctis didn't feel like he was about to faint. The brunette lowered his trembling hand and sat watching his partner, waiting. He was distracted by a hoarse, rushing sort of sound, and it was a few seconds before he realised that it was his own heavy breathing. In front of him, Prompto looked like he was nearly hyperventilating, his ribcage rising and falling dramatically as his breath hissed behind his hands.

The blond's cobalt eyes frowned and blinked dazedly at the words on the coffee table, and Noctis couldn't tell if the bright glitter of tears in his eyes were residual from the ring not fitting, or the result of some new, unknown emotion. Just as Noct was getting ready to say just about anything to break the silence, Prompto dropped his hands, panting and stuttering.

“Noct...oh fuck, Noct?!”

The Prince met his glistening eyes, and then looked away, biting his bottom lip hard. He didn't dare to make eye contact, didn't dare witness the potential dead glint of rejection, knowing how utterly it would destroy him.

“Noctis, is this serious?” Prompto whispered loudly, his voice breaking a little. Noct would ordinarily have chuckled at the very rare use of his full name. Instead he nodded, sensing his partner shift closer on the couch and take hold of his biceps, squeezing him. About to try and soften the blow?

“I, I have a ring for you too,” Noct managed, with a pathetic huff of laughter even as frantic urgency spurred him to speak. He sucked in a deep breath, and courageously lifted his gaze to meet Prompto's again. The blond's expression was still one of weepy disorientation. “It's what all of this has been about. I talked to Ignis about it, and Dad. I've been waiting to ask you. And the best thing is that we can do it. For real. Legal, and valid, and legitimate. I promise, I will look after you, always. You're so insecure, saying I'll get bored of you, that you're not good enough and that I can do better than you. But it'd be impossible to do better than you, Prom. You're the one who can do so much better. You're the luckiest, happiest thing that ever happened to me, and I'm so freaking scared of losing you to somebody else. Somebody who doesn't have all this royal shit going on.” Noct's voice rose higher in pitch and speed as he breathlessly, desperately continued, his hands unconsciously clenched into terrified fists. “You deserve to have a simple life. A normal life. But I'm selfish. I love you. And I want you. I want you to be with me, as long as you'll have me,” the Prince finally beseeched him, his husky voice cracked.

Agonising seconds passed in the gloom, until Prompto's head tilted forward, his gaze down in his lap, his breathing laboured. Under his furrowed brow, another pearly tear dropped from one cobalt eye.

This is it, Noct thought. He's gonna say no.

“Damn it, Noct,” came the ragged whisper, and the Prince's heart jolted so painfully, so disturbingly in his chest, that he panicked for a moment that maybe you could actually, literally die of heartbreak.

Prompto looked back up at him, his expression softer than before. Startling Noctis, he suddenly gave a bright, wry grin and began giggling, even as the salt of his tears was drying on his cheeks.

“Of course I will, dude. Of course I will.”

 

~*~*~

 

Chapter Text

It wasn't often that they went to the penthouse roof, but now Noctis was leading his partner out into the brisk dampness of a blackish night. Prompto had been shaky and giggly and needed some air, and the Prince had felt very much the same, so he had used his keycard to reach the exclusive top floor where they could cool and calm down. The evening rain was still falling steadily, the drops cold and fat and soaking, but the sleek seating area of the roof had a wide wood-and-glass overhang that provided ample shelter from the elements.

The entire space was predictably well-appointed, with prohibitively expensive furnishings and impeccable design. A waist-high white wall bordered the roof area, which was tiled with glossy black stone. The small outpost where the elevator docked was the foundation for the al fresco ceiling. It protected the cube-shaped, black rattan chairs and couch, several heavy blackwood tables and a series of potted plants with bright but soft backlighting. More spotlights were embedded in the tiled stone floor, and weighty silver lamp heaters squatted unobtrusively in the corners of the roof.

Their apartment building was not actually particularly tall, though there was enough space around it to allow excellent views of the surrounding city. For security, the building looked little different to its neighbours, limiting the chance of it being identified or possibly targeted for insidious reasons. One or two nearby high-rises were taller, with glittering silver-blue windows that were currently soaked in tearry cascades of rain.

The couple had taken the time to put on their jackets before venturing out onto the terrace, but they still shivered reactively. Giggling randomly with each other, they made their way, hurried and hunching a little with the cold and wet, towards the edge of the sheltered area. From where they sat down breathlessly upon the solid rattan sofa, their view was mostly uninterrupted, and the altitudinous breezes were invigorating and gusty enough to be almost unnerving. The sense of the height of the building was strong enough to make both men feel a little giddy.

Prompto glanced up to the glass-and-wood awning above, which was very solidly built. He watched the heavy rain splatter down upon the thick, clear glass, momentarily entranced by the wobbly and ever-changing watery mosaic. Beside him, Noctis huddled up closer and held his hand, his gaze upon the drenched, bright cityscape beyond the wall. Distant car horns and the occasional siren, very faint music, and vague industrial sounds could just about be heard from their lofty viewpoint.

“We're on the couch again,” the blond laughed, shifting slightly to turn his body towards his partner, the tight wooden weave of the sofa squeaking beneath him as he moved. He had raised his voice to be heard over the downpour.

“We're on a couch,” Noctis corrected him with a grin. “This one doesn't have a TV.”

“No,” the blond conceded, nodding toward the glimmering skyline, inundated with softly-pulsing lights. “But I'd say that this is a fair substitute.”

“Are you okay?” Noctis asked simply, his voice shaky. He could feel his skin already dampening with the cold humidity, his fine hair soaking up microscopic molecules of water.

Prompto had pinched himself multiple times on their way up to the roof, convinced that he was dreaming. The back of his left hand now had a sore pink mark upon it. In the elevator, when his partner hadn't been looking, Noctis had given himself a single pinch too. As it turned out, he really was conscious, and his boyfriend really had accepted his proposal.

The blond nodded, his lips parted and his arms wrapping around himself, taking deep and stabilising inhales. When he let them out, the faintest damp cloud of expiration disappeared into the air.

“And to think I thought you were proposing to me back at Christmas,” he chuckled sweetly.

“I should have just offered you the ring and straight-up asked you. Like a sane person,” Noctis mused, smirking. “You have no idea how stressed out I've been the last few weeks. All the mini heart attacks I've had. Plus as well as this whole thing, I came out to my dad. I guess since he already knew, that was one less thing to worry about,” he rolled his eyes.

“Oh man, talk about turmoil,” Prompto grinned. “Iggy already told me that your dad thinks I'm good for you. To think that the King knew we were boning this whole time...” he murmured, pulling a pained face.

“...Do your parents know? About any of it?” Noctis asked. He usually tried not to bring up the subject of Prompto's essentially estranged parents, because it didn't evoke very happy emotions. But in this case, he figured it was probably wise to broach it once and for all.

“I...” the blond started, awkwardly. He unclasped his arms from around himself and fiddled with his hands instead, head down. “The last contact I had was a long-distance phone call to say I moved in with you. So they would know where to find me if there was a emergency. But they never call me. I mean, you know that already,” he shrugged, and Noct nodded in agreement. As far as he could tell, Prompto's adoptive parents made little or no effort to communicate with their son. It was as if, now that he was an adult, they had finally shrugged off every last vestige of responsibility, although he knew that Prompto had been largely alone in his childhood and teenage years too. Their loss.

“And I figured the other stuff...y'know, being with you...wasn't really their business. I don't really care whether they approve or not. I never see them anyway – what are they gonna do, disown me?” Prompto continued. “I bet, even if they knew that I was marrying freakin' royalty, they couldn't manage to get 'time off work.' That's just how they are.”

“Well, I'll follow your lead. This isn't gonna be public knowledge anyway, so you don't need to worry about them randomly finding out from a newspaper or something,” Noctis pondered aloud.

“Yeah. We'll see. That part can totally wait,” the blond laughed again. “Hey! Jeez, I'm your fiancé! Holy crap!” The resultant giggles and look of unadulterated glee on Prompto's face made the Prince's heart thud in his ribs like a punch.

“Yep. I totally proposed to you,” Noct conceded, hugging him fondly and kissing the side of his head, which was a little damp with the chilly moisture in the air.

“...When you think about it, I kinda proposed to you first. Accidentally. Through Iggy. Holy shit, that guy is cunning. I bought you an engagement ring and I didn't even know it. I was legit just buying you a nice everyday ring, ha!”

“Specs knew all about the proposal. That's why he switched the ring size. Sneaky bastard. He helped a lot, with everything. As well as wanting to repeatedly kick my ass.”

“...'Cos he didn't agree with it?” Prompto asked, looking instantaneously fretful.

“Oh no, not that. He's totally up for it. He was the one who researched all the history, and told me that it was possible in the first place. He said I was being kinda shitty for not telling you everything. But I had a plan, I knew what I was doing,” the brunette shrugged again, having a hard job of convincing himself, even in hindsight and with the benefit of a positive outcome.

“So since Ignis coerced me into proposing to you, is it even valid?” Prompto asked playfully.

“Even if it wasn't valid, I'm the Prince. I'd make it valid. But you said yes to me anyway, so you can't back out now.”

“Gods, Noct, I'm not your boyfriend any more. I'm your fiancé,” the blond uttered, eyes distant and voice husky with awe.

“You're gonna be a husband. My husband,” Noctis teased him, enjoying Prompto's blissful bewilderment, and luxuriating in his own happiness too. “Your ring's in the bedroom, hidden. I'll give it to you when we get back down, okay?”

“How did you know what ring size I am?” the blond queried, casting a mischievous glance at his fiancé. “Even I don't know that.”

“Ignis told me. He said he knew just by looking at your hands and I believed him. He's basically a wizard,” Noctis told him, as if it explained everything.

“That explains everything,” Prompto confirmed, chuckling. “Dude, we are gonna have to have a serious, mega chat about all this. I am so out of the loop.”

“Yeah. We've got loads of time, I promise I'll tell you everything I know. Iggy can fill in the rest of the technical stuff. There's no rush. Maybe we can go see Dad, too. He'll want to hear the good news,” Noctis smiled. “Oh, and that reminds me. I can't believe you said 'dude' when you accepted,” the Prince scowled, though his amusement shone through.

“You can't believe it?” the blond winked.

“Well...actually yeah, I can totally believe it. It's kinda fitting,” Noctis replied, squeezing his partner lovingly. The rain still battered the sleek roof above them, getting louder as harsh breezes swept the freezing droplets in sheets across the glass and wood, and dashed wild cascades of water over the now treacherously-wet stone of the floor in front of them.

“You wanna go downstairs? I'm getting cold,” the blond suggested, bundling against the Prince and wriggling a little.

“Of course. We've got a lot to talk about. And we've got Champagne in the fridge. Seems like the right time to open it.” Noctis stood up and led his partner across the slippery roof, skidding perilously on the wet stonework a few times in their retreat from what was becoming a torrential deluge. Prompto yelled to be heard.

“Sounds good to me! After we've dried off, I mean!”

Noctis allowed himself one diversion, halting abruptly before they got to the elevator so that he could give his fiancé a firm, wet, giggly kiss in the rainstorm, before they fled the roof to seek warmth and shelter.

 


 

They finally ended up in the bedroom, where the mood was more one of romance than of lust, even though they were naked in bed, having towelled off the cold rain and stripped their wet clothes. They huddled together under the covers, chatting in the low light offered by a single lamp and the amber nightlight. Each of them nursed a thin flute of Champagne, which Noctis had retrieved from the back of the refrigerator and popped open with a flourish. The heavy bottle was sweating icy droplets onto the black bedside table nearby.

“For a moment earlier I thought you were gonna say no,” Noctis confessed, swirling his drink before taking another long sip of the sweet, fizzy alcohol.

“Seriously?” Prompto asked, raising an eyebrow and giving him an affectionate poke.

“Yeah. It's such a huge thing, after all. It must have totally thrown you.”

“Well, I don't really know what I was expecting. To be honest, I figured it was some kind of proposal, but more along the lines of 'BLOW ME' than marriage,” the blond chuckled.

“You can do that too if you like,” the Prince sniggered, and was given a playful nudge in response.

“Pssh, maybe later. If you're lucky,” Prompto smirked. “I'm gonna frame those letters, by the way.”

“You don't want to eat them?” Noctis asked, pulling a confused face.

“Are you kidding?! No way! They're precious!”

“You can't just frame chocolate and stick it on a wall.”

“Sure I can. I'll find a way,” the blond promised, curling his free hand into a determined fist.

“Won't it look weird?”

“Who cares how it looks? I got proposed to by a freakin' Prince,” Prompto insisted, and the brunette grinned, nodding in defeat.

“Whatever you want. Listen, Prom...I'm not gonna lie, it won't be the easiest road. The future's gonna be hard. For both of us. You really sure you want to do this?” Noctis murmured, watching the blond's face carefully.

“I know. But I think it'll be okay, so long as we're together,” Prompto replied, face calm with acceptance. “We can look after each other. I'll be fine as long as you're with me.”

“Agreed,” Noct replied softly, placing his chilled glass to one side and turning towards his fiancé, shifting in the bed so that he could cup his face and give him a tender kiss. The blond sighed in response, accepting the smooch and deepening it with cautious exploration, as if expecting his best friend to taste different, to respond in new ways now that they were engaged.

 


 

By the time the long and increasingly-delirious kissing session had morphed into physical ardour, twenty minutes had passed, and both men were breathless, and wordless. Prompto nudged aside the bedcovers blindly and slid onto Noct's bare lap in the gloom, grinding against him with soft little noises of pleasure, his hands splayed upon the Prince's chest. Noctis sucked in sharp, shallow breaths through his teeth, fingers massaging his fiancé's hips and backside greedily.

“Ride me?” he asked the blond in a coarse whisper, the first dialogue exchanged since they had started kissing.

“Will I finally get my ring afterwards?” the blond teased, panting, and lifting his left hand with a delicate flourish.

“If you're really good,” Noctis murmured back, smirking at the blatant double meaning in his husky words.

Looking pleased with himself, Prompto bit his lip and wriggled his hips a little. His next words were unexpectedly gentle.

“Tell me, Noct, have I ever disappointed you?”

“Not once,” the Prince replied easily, shaking his head, grinning affectionately. “Now come on, baby. Get yourself ready. Let me see.”

Blushing so rapidly that Noctis could actually see the blood diffusing across his fiancé's freckled skin, Prompto laughed, and nodded. “Pervert.”

“You got a whole lifetime with this pervert.”

Prompto snickered with laughter, reaching across to the bedside table for the lube.

“I can't promise my ass will survive that long.”

 


 

Prompto's left arm reached out behind him, his hand clenched on Noct's bent knee. The Prince had raised and braced his legs to support his fiancé's shivering weight as he knelt above him, fingering himself assiduously just inches above Noct's abdomen. The blond was glowing with perspiration, his skin reddened, and the anguish on his face as he gritted his teeth and winced at his pleasure was nearly overwhelming.

The Prince smoothed his damp hands randomly up Prompto's naked thighs, where strong muscles squeezed with the effort of keeping him upright and gently grinding upon his own heat-wrinkled fingers.

“N-Noct, I'm ready,” Prompto wheezed, the breaths catching in his lungs and throat with a faint crackle, his features looking tormented in the gloom.

“Bit more,” the Prince muttered, almost inaudibly. His hands slid up to feel the rise and fall of hips that gleamed with exertion, and then back to roughly massage his best friend's backside, pulling his cheeks aside with mute greed.

“Ah shit, I'll come,” the blond warned, slowing his fingers and taking a short, gasping break from movement to try and calm himself down.

“Alright, turn around. Let me see everything,” Noct commanded huskily, his own arousal achingly hard and burning with near-pain every time it so much as pecked Prompto's skin. The blond sighed, nodding weakly, and Noctis was quick to seek consent.

“If that's okay?” he asked, rubbing the base of his partner's spine.

“Yeah,” Prompto laughed in reply, panting. “Just needed a breather there...Feel free to step in and help with this,” he teased, with a croaky chuckle. He obliged the Prince by turning away from him with a few awkward joint clicks and a small groan, facing the end of the bed and Noct's feet. “Legs down, dude.”

“Always 'dude,'” Noctis answered, letting out a dramatic, world-weary sigh. As he obeyed, straightening his legs on the bed, he was rewarded with a fond little slap on his own thigh.

“Always.”

The blond cracked out a little moan as he sank tentatively down upon Noct's shaft, tremoring to a halt as soon as he was fully penetrated.

The Prince loved to see his best friend's face during intercourse, but he couldn't help but indulge his slightly-less romantic impulses now and then. He shivered mightily as he stared at the lean line of Prompto's back, the wet hair at the base of his neck, and of course, the perfect, tight, sinfully-muscled ass that was beginning to ride his dick with mind-blowing slowness. He knew Prompto wasn't trying to tease him, merely getting used to the burn and pressure of having something inside him, but the speed was tortuous, letting him feel every blood-hot centimetre inside his lover, twitching and contracting and pulling him in.

“Ah...shit,” Noct muttered suddenly, feeling a pulse of threat in the base of his cock, a dizzy excitement in his belly. He dropped his head back on the pillow and swallowed, closing his eyes for some respite from the tantalising view. “...Won't be long.”

“Same,” Prompto's voice sounded out, seeming strangely distant because he was turned away. The blond braced his hands once more upon Noct's legs, and nodded, mostly to himself. “I can come like this. Help me out?” he asked sweetly, glancing back over his shoulder with a devastating grin, a shimmer of sweat on his forehead.

The brunette obeyed without hesitation, beginning to pump his hips urgently upwards into his lover, who in turn, leaned forward, bravely showing Noct everything, and sobbing with the sharp force of the Prince's movements.

Noctis' breaths were rasping, guttural, whilst Prompto threw his head back and cried, his wordless, noisy sounds jolting and breaking with every hard stab into his body. The Prince looked down under his wet fringe and whined at the sight of the glossy meat of his cock disappearing with blurring speed into his fiancé. His fingertips squeezed into Prompto's hips, the marks appearing white on scalding skin, and then almost immediately reddening into baby bruises.

The blond soon began to shudder, his voice grating out and his insides contracting brutally tight around Noct. The Prince watched a warm droplet of sweat trickle down the dent of Prompto's spine in the dim light, and he smeared it with one shaky thumb, pushing the salty digit into his mouth and sucking deliriously. Unable to bear being so far away from his lover, he sat up on the damp bedspread with a wheezy exhale and hugged Prompto from behind, letting the blond take over with frantic gyrations.

Noct's right arm was hooked across Prompto's torso, and the blond held onto it tightly like the bar of a rollercoaster, knuckles white and fingers hot with sweat.

Noct, gonna come,” he whispered viciously, bouncing harder and grunting and growling with effort.

“That's it, sweetheart,” Noctis hissed into wet blond hair, kissing his fiancé's scalp and holding him even tighter. “So beautiful.”

Prompto's wild weight was numbing him, their mingled perspiration stinging his eyes and skin, and the ragged yells emanating from his fiancé were nearly deafening, making his ears ring in the gloom. It was perfect.

Oh...oh, fuck...Noct!” Prompto finally screamed, trembling with violence, coughing out angry-sounding yells in his agony. The Prince held him crushingly through it, feeling every deep shudder and every maddened thud of his racing heart. His own climax oozed through him, slow and bone-melting and paralysing. He merely held on tight, sobbing and sighing into the back of his partner's neck, marking him with weak bites every couple of seconds and revelling in the burning salinity of his skin.

Gods, yes, Prom...” Noctis eventually sighed, as they rocked to a steaming, shivering and aching halt, still physically connected.

The blond rested his head back in exhaustion, his throat bobbing as he swallowed hard, wincing through his aftershocks. Beads of sweat glistened on his upper lip, his cheekbones, his forehead, his skin flushed and glowing in the warm shadows. His thundering heartbeat was gradually slowing against Noct's chest.

“Perfect,” the Prince murmured, cuddling him sweetly.

Prompto groaned tiredly and turned his head, nuzzling his fiancé's mussed, damp hair affectionately. “Love you, dude.”

The Prince managed a dry-throated chuckle. “Dude.”

“I'll stop calling you dude when you give me my bling, 'kay?” the blond offered, giggling croakily.

Noctis nipped his nape gently. “The bargaining begins. What have I gotten myself into?”

“Heheh. I'm pulling off,” Prompto warned him, bracing on the bed and hissing as he disengaged from his best friend's softened cock, before collapsing forward with a tremble of pain. “Ah man...that was a rough one,” he managed to laugh, pulling a face as he twisted around and settled back against the pillows at the head of the bed once more, teeth gritted in discomfort.

“You want some ass cream to go with that bling?” Noctis teased, sitting beside him and rubbing his arm.

“Right now I think that's the least you could do,” Prompto told him, trying not to laugh and provoke the twinges of pain in his backside.

 


 

Half an hour later, they were drinking Champagne in bed again, snuggled together. Prompto had been suitably medicated, and Noctis was rummaging in the bottom drawer of his bedside table.

When he pulled out a small, dark red box with a knowing grin, his partner rolled his eyes, tutting.

“Oh man, in your chocolate stash. I should have known.”

“Right? I figured there was as much chance of you stealing my high-calorie junky chocolate as there was of me stealing your crappy diet bars.”

“We know each other so well,” Prompto teased.

“Inside and out,” Noctis agreed, and they both let out dirty chuckles at the mental images resulting from this statement. “Okay, no more distractions. Moment of truth.”

“Ah, I can't believe this,” the blond whispered to himself, turning a little more towards Noctis and trying not to cringe too hard at the pain. He watched the Prince open the little box, and then sucked in a sharp breath, letting it out in a long coo of awe that made Noct's heart palpitate with fondness.

“Noctis...it's absolutely...” Prompto picked up the ring with unnecessary delicacy, cradling the heavy silvery band like it was made of eggshell. The Prince wondered if his fiancé had even realised that he'd used his full name again.

“...It's incredible. And...it fits perfectly,” Prompto beamed, his face creasing into a stunning, heart-meltingly joyful smile as he slipped the ring carefully onto his left ring finger. “...Good old Ignis.”

Noctis started pointing out the ring's features, his voice tight with sudden nervousness. “It's rhodium and platinum. The swirly bit is shell, so it kinda matches you the ring got me, with the pearl. Which is awesome, because we chose the same thing. And, uh, the blue bit's from a real meteor. It's outta this world, just like you.”

The blond met his eyes, and was both surprised and tickled to find no trace of mischief. Noctis looked back with calm affection and a small smile. Prompto looked closer at the ring, a bright and vibrant design. The metal base was solid and a clean, glossy silver colour. An almost neon-blue line cut around the middle of the ring, and it had an intriguing holographic quality. It was bordered on both sides by muted turquoise-purple bands of some sort of sea shell, iridescent and hypnotising.

“And, the colour...it's like your eyes. And you see how the pattern's kinda crazy but overall it all fits perfectly? And it looks amazing? That's kinda like you too,” the Prince smirked, though his pale face was deeply flushed with self-consciousness.

“Oh, Noct...don't make me cry,” Prompto admitted, laughing stickily and biting his bottom lip to avoid sniffling. “That was so cheesy, by the way. I love it,” he confessed, wiping his eyes.

“Pft, if I can't be cheesy when I'm proposing, when can I be?” Noctis shrugged. “Besides, it's all true. Love you.”

“Love you too, Noct. Say, um...could you ask me again? Out loud, I mean?” Prompto asked quietly, as though he were begging a monumental favour.

Noctis flashed a grin. “Stand up, by the bed.”

Prompto obeyed, with some more wincing and groaning, and grasped his left forearm with his right hand bashfully.

“I feel weird standing here naked.”

“Shh. I'm proposing.” Ignoring the fact that the blond was already wearing his engagement ring, Noct got down on one knee before him, unclasping his fiancé's hands and holding them tightly within his own. He cleared his throat, and asked softly.

“Prompto Argentum, will you marry me?”

His partner giggled, head ducking down in amusement and embarrassment, tutting and shrugging as he tried to absorb the intense moment and endure it with the help of levity.

“Yeah. Yeah, I guess I will.”

 


 

After they had finished the Champagne, they got into bed and chatted and made out for a good long while. It was only when Prompto fell asleep, his hair utterly ruffled and his features peaceful, that Noctis went to retrieve his phone and text his advisor. He didn't try to fight the smug grin that tugged his face.

 

Hey Iggy guess what. I'm engaged. - N

 

The reply came with the usual swiftness.

 

I am overjoyed, Noct. Truly happy for you both. Did Prompto's ring fit as I estimated? - Ignis

 

Like a glove. You're some kinda genius – N

 

It has been said. - Ignis

 

Thanks for helping with everything. Imagine if he'd said no after all this – N

 

I calculated the chances of that to be very low indeed. Do you understand the ramifications of all of this? It's going to be a long and potentially very difficult journey, and it's only just beginning. - Ignis

 

The Prince nodded subconsciously, still grinning, typing without hesitation.

 

Bring it on. - N

 

~*~*~