They’re almost to the check-out when Boris dumps a bag of tangerines and a bottle of Arizona into Theo’s arms and says, “Go pay for this. I’ll meet you outside.”
Theo gapes at him. “Wait, what? What are you doing?”
Boris waves a dismissive hand and turns away down the aisle. “I’ll meet you outside!” he yells over his shoulder.
Theo sighs, knowing there isn’t anything he can do, and heads towards the check-out. Ten minutes later, as he’s scuffing the heel of his shoe against the sand-dusted curb and swinging the plastic sack of their oranges and tea around, Boris finally catches up with him.
“Sorry, sorry!” He’s slightly out of breath. "Had to grab something and there was suspicious mom I was trying to avoid.”
Theo eyes him. “What’d you get?”
Boris pulls two skinny black tubes out of his inside jacket pocket. “Eye marker!” he says with a grin.
Theo squints. “You mean eyeliner?”
“Why the fuck did you shoplift eyeliner?”
Boris shrugs, trading the pens for the tea from the grocery bag before they start walking down the sidewalk. “Because I wanted to try it?"
“You just want everyone at the party tonight to be looking at you,” Theo says, rolling his eyes. He can already see it: Boris and his new goth-looking makeup, strutting around some senior’s house with vodka sloshing over the rim of his Solo cup, pretending to be the mysterious Slavic desert kid everyone seems to think he is (Theo doesn’t know why they think that - he’s literally the complete opposite).
“Not true. Can a man not try new things?”
Theo scoffs, taking the tea back. “Sure, but don’t come crying to me when you end up looking like a raccoon.”
“Come on, Potter. Will be fun! You can wipe it right off if you don’t like it.”
Theo sighs. He’s sitting knee-to-knee with Boris on his bed, an hour before they’re supposed to be at the party, and Boris has decided that he wants Theo to be his eyeliner test subject.
“Makeup is for girls, Boris.”
Boris rolls his eyes. “Chush sobach’ya. Does it say just for girls on it? No!”
“Why do you even want me to try it?”
“I need practice. And who knows, maybe you will like it!”
Theo groans and falls onto his back. It’s pointless though, because Boris just climbs right on top of him.
“Please, Potter,” he whines, hair falling into his face as he looks down at Theo. “Just this once. For me.”
Theo glares at him. Half of his attention is on whether or not he’s going to give in, and the other half has gotten sidetracked by how close Boris is. It’s nothing new, nothing unfamiliar, but the proximity still flips Theo’s stomach over every single time. He can see how pink and chapped Boris’ lips are, the hint of a new sunburn on his cheeks, the intensity in his black eyes that are sometimes deep brown, depending on how the light hits him. Not to mention each loose curl of hair brushing Theo’s forehead because they’re so close.
“For me, Potter,” Boris repeats, bringing Theo’s focus back. Theo lets out a heavy sigh.
“Are you sure it comes off easy?”
Boris grins. “Yah! Says so on it! Trust me,” he adds, climbing off of Theo so that he can sit up, “is going to be great.”
“Yeah, sure. Can I at least have a drink first?”
So Boris grabs the vodka off the dresser, turns on all the lights in the room (“To do it well,” he says) and then clambers back onto the bed in front of Theo. “Ready?” he asks, uncapping one of the eyeliner pens.
Theo takes a big drink of vodka, winces against the way it burns like lighter fuel down his throat. “Yeah. Let’s get it over with.”
Boris nods. He gently pulls Theo’s glasses off - something Theo had completely forgotten about - and then carefully brings up the pen. Prods the skin under Theo’s eye, testing, and then he starts drawing or whatever the hell it is that you’re supposed to do with eyeliner. Theo wouldn’t know.
He hadn’t realized how…intimate of a task this would be, for lack of a better word. They’re as close as possible, cross-legged with their knees pressed together, and Theo doesn’t have anywhere to look but at Boris. All his expressions are clear as day, his eyebrows knitted together as he concentrates on not fucking up Theo’s face, crooked teeth practically chewing through his bottom lip. It’s nice, being able to look at him without needing to search for an excuse. He’s always been so magnetic that Theo is always catching himself staring, especially when he shouldn’t be.
And then Boris’ eyes flick up and meet his, sharp and earnest, and Theo’s train of thought dies completely. He hears someone’s breath catch, but he isn’t sure if it was his or Boris’. They’re too close to tell.
Theo wishes he didn’t know Boris as well as he does, because a part of him knows what Boris is thinking. He can tell by the look in his eyes and the way his gaze is roaming all over Theo’s face. Theo knows what he wants to do and the worst part is, he doesn’t mind. He really, really doesn’t fucking mind.
But that’s not - it isn’t - they don’t do that. They aren’t that. So it won’t happen, and that’s the way it should be.
“Are you done?” he chokes out past the dryness of his throat, needing to break through the silence between them. Boris blinks, and then shakes his head.
“With first one, yes.” As normal as his voice sounds, Theo can hear the slight strain in it. Boris grabs the vodka and takes a long drink. “Not bad at all, actually.”
“I don’t believe you.”
Boris laughs and presses the pen against the corner of Theo’s other eye. “Stop being a baby and let me finish.”
So Theo shuts up, sits patiently, and continues to ignore the twist in his gut as he slowly times his breaths to match Boris’ while pretending he isn’t.
A minute or two later, Boris leans back to scrutinize his work. “Hm."
Theo frowns. “What’s hm? Are you done? Is it bad?”
Boris shrugs, chewing on the end of the pen. “Is not bad, just…”
“I don’t know!” he says exasperatedly. "Is just not you, I guess. Too…dark.”
Theo groans and puts his glasses back on. “I fucking told you, asshole.” Boris waves a hand.
‘Yah, yah. But I got practice and now I can do mine!”
Theo shakes his head and climbs off the bed. “Have fun with that. I have to wipe this off before my dad comes home.”
He flicks on the bathroom light and his expression turns horrified as soon as he sees himself in the mirror. “Boris, what the fuck is this? This is so bad!”
Boris laughs, following him in. “Is not!”
“I look like a horrible goth version of a Founding Father,” he deadpans. Boris snorts.
“Is really not that bad, just looks weird on you.”
He’s right. Objectively the eyeliner is fairly nice, but it’s just in all the wrong places. Definitely not something Theo could ever see himself actually wearing.
“God, I hate you,” he sighs, sticking a washcloth under the faucet before going at his eyes with it. Boris cackles, leaning close to the mirror to start his own eyeliner.
“At least you can say you tried it.”
“Why would I ever want to say that?”
All he gets in response is a shrug and he gives up, going back to scrubbing at his eyes. For a minute all it does is smear, but eventually the corner of the washcloth is black and there’s only a hint of a shadow on his eyes.
He looks at Boris in the mirror - he’s barely started, taking his time.
“I have to feed Popper. You want a tangerine?” Theo asks. Boris nods so he heads downstairs, taking the bottle of vodka with him. Eyeliner. Ridiculous. He is kind of curious though, he thinks to himself as he fills Popper’s food bowl, to see how it’s going to look on Boris. He’ll probably pull it off, honestly, with the whole early 2000s emo teen look he’s already got going. Theo almost laughs. Boris doesn’t even try for that look, probably doesn't even know what it is, it’s just what comes off when he doesn’t wash his hair and avoids the sun and wears exclusively black.
Theo makes sure Popper drinks his water and eats a little food, and then cuts open the mesh bag of oranges. Two for himself, two for Boris, a bowl to throw the peels in. With Popper at his heels, he heads back upstairs.
“Is there even going to be anyone we know at this party?” he asks as he enters his bedroom, setting the vodka and oranges down. “Like, why are we even going?”
“Don’t know,” Boris says from the bathroom. “Something to do? I don’t want to sit here and watch movies again.”
“Yeah, I guess so.”
Theo starts towards the bathroom at the same time that Boris leaves it and he barely stops himself from running smack into Boris’ chest. He steps back, and as soon as he registers Boris’ face, his stomach flips over.
“Finished!” Boris says, grinning. “How is it?"
All Theo can do is stare. He’s lost the ability to speak, to think, to do literally anything. His brain is skipping like a broken record.
It’s just eyeliner. That’s all it is. Black lines of makeup. But holy fuck, holy motherfucking shit, it looks good on Boris. Theo can barely think about how good it looks on him. It fits with him perfectly, not too blatant but prominent enough that it draws attention to his eyes and outlines the rest of his face and just - fuck. Theo’s having a breakdown. Fuck, that’s hot. Fuck fuck fuck. It’s hot. I think it’s hot - he’s hot - fuck. Mother fuck.
Boris’ glee slowly fades when Theo doesn’t say anything. “You don’t like it. Is it really that bad? I thought it was okay, but maybe is too much -“
Theo shakes his head, grabs a fistful of Boris’ shirt, and kisses him. Hard. It’s a shock to both him and Boris, but Theo’s too busy thinking about the eyeliner and the fact that he can’t do anything else when Boris is looking like that. He really didn’t have any other option. Now they’re here, pushing at each other, breathless, and Boris moans when Theo bites his lip and it just winds him up even more.
“What the fuck, Potter,” Boris pants once they’re forced to take a breath.
“It’s fucking hot, Boris. The eyeliner.” Theo can’t open his eyes but he feels his cheeks burning. “Really, really fucking hot.”
Boris nods, forehead moving against Theo’s. “Good to know. I’ll wear it more often, yes?”
Boris laughs. “Okay.”
Theo finally opens his eyes, but then he’s met with Boris and his eyeliner and he loses it again. He pulls Boris back down, crashing lips and teeth together.
“Let’s not go to the party,” he mumbles at some point, when he’s got his hands in Boris’ hair and Boris has started marking up his neck.
“Done. Cancelled. Staying here all night.”
They don’t ever get around to eating the tangerines.