Lio was sprawled across the floor of the Parnassus.
The fire had gone out. The ash slowly crawled up his limbs, disintegrating, decaying. Galo swallowed the fire Lio had left behind and breathed it back into him, kissing the flame back alight. Galo pulled back, scanning the body for any sign of life, and waiting.
The ash continued to climb, and Galo began to scream.
He screamed and cried out, wailing until the noise of it all woke him up.
“Galo. Galo. It’s okay, I’m here, shh, it’s okay,” he heard someone say. He was shaken up and confused, scared even.
”I- wh- Lio?” he stuttered out.
Lio turned on the lamp by the bedside and sat down on the edge of the bed. “You were having a nightmare, by the sounds of things. You were yelling for me and crying,” he said softly, wiping a tear away from Galo’s cheek with his thumb.
“Oh,” Galo began, sitting up in bed. “Sorry if I woke you up, I must’ve been yelling pretty loud for you to have heard me from in there.” Since the fight with Kray left the Burnish without their powers, Lio didn’t really have a place to call home. That is, until a certain overexcited firefighter decided to take Lio in as if he were a stray kitten. So, as of one month ago, Lio had been essentially living on Galo’s couch (not that Lio could complain; a pull-out sofa bed in an insulated apartment beats the floor of a cave any day).
”Well, you were, but I was awake anyway. Couldn’t sleep.” He checked the clock on his phone- it’s just past 1am.
There’s a strange silence, a heaviness in the air, before Galo starts again. “I was so terrified it wasn’t gonna work.” He took in a slow, shaking breath. “Bringing you back. In my dream, it didn’t work.”
”Oh, Galo...” Lio trails off, pulling Galo close to him and rubbing soothing circles into his back. “It did work, I’m here. You saved my life. I’m not going anywhere.” Lio held him, whispering quiet reassurances to him, until his breathing slowed and his tears dried.
They ended up both curled up on Galo’s bed, facing each other and talking, telling stories and giggling together.
”-and Remi just tossed the whole pizza box into the open manhole, can you believe that? I was so hungry! And he never explained why!” Galo whisper-yelled passionately, gesturing wildly as he finished telling the dramatic tale. Lio had his hand over his mouth as he fought back another bout of laughter.
Galo looked over at Lio and smiled a sweet, goofy grin. “Thanks for cheering me up, Lio. That dream really shook me up, I just- I care about you a lot! I don’t want to lose you.”
Lio looked taken aback. His violet eyes shone with surprise and wonder. “Galo-“ he began, but was cut off by the soft press of Galo’s lips on his. He hesitated for a second, taken by surprise, before gently kissing him back. It was a quiet and tentative kiss, gentle and hesitant, the kind that feels like the moment before you begin to fall, or the second before striking a match.
Lio pulled back for just a moment. “Stay with me?” he whispered. Galo grinned, large and lopsided and excited.
”Always,” he whispered back, before Lio pulled him in to kiss him again, and again, until he lost count.