Carlos sat at his desk, staring at the blank Google Doc on his screen. He had wanted to get a head start on his History essay but had been unable to concentrate all day. Seb was coming over for a sleepover in – he checked the time again – any minute now, actually. Carlos had been surprised when his mom had agreed to let his boyfriend stay overnight, but he wasn’t going to question her decision. He narrowed his eyes at his screen and started typing an introductory sentence for what felt like the hundredth time when he heard the doorbell ring.
Carlos shot up from his desk chair and slammed his laptop shut, running down the stairs to get to the front door first. He stopped in front of the door, taking a moment to run a hand over his hair and make sure it was still in place, before gingerly turning the handle. He opened the door to see a grinning Seb with his backpack hanging off of one shoulder and a hand holding onto the strap.
“Hiya!” Seb beamed.
“Hey!” Carlos stepped to the side so Seb could walk in but he didn’t right away.
“Just a sec,” he said, turning and waving to the car stopped on the street before it drove away.
“Georgie?” Carlos asked as Seb walked in.
“Yep,” Seb rolled his eyes. “She’s ridiculously overprotective…”
“But it’s sweet!” Carlos chuckled, shutting and locking the door out of habit.
“If by sweet you mean annoying–“ Seb began, but cut himself off when he saw Carlos’ mom emerge from the living room. “Hi Mrs. Rodriguez!” he smiled. It was so cute how he perked up every time Carlos’ parents were around.
“Hi Seb, how have you been?” Carlos’ mom replied.
“Great! We’re starting to get busy around the farm, but I’m used to that.” Seb responded, polite but comfortable.
As cute as it was, Carlos didn’t want to get stuck in small talk with his mom. They would have plenty of time for that during dinner. “Sorry mom, we’re going to drop Seb’s bag in my room,” he grabbed Seb’s hand and began to pull him up the stairs.
“Ok, but dinner will be ready soon!” she called up after them as Seb shot her an apologetic look.
Carlos smiled back at Seb whose blush was rising on his cheeks and gave his hand a squeeze before letting go. He swung the door to his room open and walked in with Seb behind him, stopping in his tracks when he spotted the stuffed animal perched on his pillow. He spun on his heel and pushed his boyfriend against the door, hoping to stall and distract him.
Seb looked flustered but Carlos wiped the expression off of his face as he kissed the boy and pressed his body against his. Seb’s arms lifted in surprise at the kiss and ghosted over his boyfriend’s back, and Carlos almost let himself be wrapped up in the embrace when he remembered the issue at hand. Before the opportunity passed, he pushed himself off from Seb’s shoulders and leaped across the room onto his bed, grabbing ahold of the stuffed animal behind his back.
Seb dropped his arms in confusion and hovered in front of the door for a few moments. “Carlos… what are you doing?” he raised an eyebrow in amusement as he slowly took a few steps into the room.
“Nothing!” Carlos blurted out, trying to make his position seem nonchalant by leaning one hand by his side but still clutching onto the elephant behind his back. “Just– getting comfortable,” he added with a weak smile.
“First you kiss me out of nowhere and then you run over and jump onto your bed? You’re clearly hiding something,” Seb gave him a knowing look. “Come on, what don’t you want me to see?” he grinned.
Carlos let his mouth fall into a small pout and pulled the stuffed elephant out from behind his back, setting her down on the bed next to him. “Ellie,” he muttered, avoiding eye contact with his boyfriend.
“The elephant?” Carlos couldn’t tell if Seb’s expression was more smirk or smile, but in either case he was mortified.
“Ughhhhh,” he sighed dramatically as he threw himself back on his bed so that he was staring at the ceiling. “Please don’t judge me.”
“What? Of course I’m not judging you,” Seb laughed and reached out to grab his boyfriend’s hands, pulling him back up to face him. “I think it’s adorable,” he leaned down and pecked his lips, but Carlos still groaned.
“It’s embarrassing…” Carlos persisted, gently swinging Seb’s arms. “But in my defense, she’s the perfect size for hugging.”
This earned another chuckle and Carlos finally cracked a smile. “You shouldn’t be embarrassed!” Seb let go of his hands and reached down for his bag which he had dropped on the floor. Carlos raised an eyebrow before his boyfriend pulled out a stuffed cow and beamed. “This is Moo Moo!”
“Oh my God…” Carlos grinned as Seb came over to sit down cross-legged on the bed next to him. “Of course you have a stuffed cow,” he laughed and propped up Ellie with his hand.
“You really should’ve seen that one coming,” Seb smiled and nudged Carlos’ elephant with his cow.
“Ok but you laughed at Ellie when you named your cow Moo Moo?” Carlos raised his eyebrows at his boyfriend.
“Fair point,” Seb nodded, “but for context, that was just what I called all cows until age five.”
“Not sure if that makes it any better,” Carlos laughed, pulling his legs up to his chest.
“Well what’s your story?” Seb retorted, gesturing to the stuffed elephant.
“I got Ellie on a trip to the zoo when I was seven and, I don’t know, I just got used to having her next to me when I sleep,” Carlos blushed, still worried that it sounded dumb.
Clearly Seb didn’t agree. “That’s so sweet!” he gushed, running a hand through his hair and making Carlos temporarily lose all awareness of time and space. “But does this mean that you won’t cuddle me?” Seb pouted, and Carlos thought that he might combust.
“Honey, I have two arms,” he smirked, resting his chin on his arms to look up at his boyfriend through his cheekily fluttering lashes.
“Come here,” Seb rolled his eyes, grabbing Carlos’ cheeks and leaning forward to plant a kiss on his lips.
Carlos sat up and let his legs fall back down, dangling his arms around Seb’s neck. When his boyfriend began to pull away, he gently tightened his grip to keep him close and felt him smile against his lips. Seb’s hands dropped from Carlos’ face, one landing on the bed and the other squeezing his thigh. Carlos’ breath hitched and he deepened the kiss in response, unable to resist running a hand through through Seb’s oh-so-soft hair in the way that he knew the blonde boy loved. When this earned the expected reaction, Carlos giggled against Seb’s lips. He was surprised at how urgently his boyfriend recaptured his mouth, the force pushing him against the wall behind him. Carlos repeated his actions, hoping to ensure that the kiss would keep feeling this good. He had almost completely lost himself in it all when they were interrupted by his mother calling up the stairs.
“Dinner’s ready, boys!” they heard, and Seb reluctantly broke the kiss as Carlos sighed.
“We should head down so she doesn’t get suspicious,” Seb bit his slightly swollen lip and Carlos chuckled.
“It might be too late for that,” Carlos brushed his thumb over Seb’s lip to illustrate his point – and because it was another excuse to touch him.
A look of genuine worry crossed Seb’s face and he went over to the mirror to assess the situation. “Do you really think so?”
“No, no, she won’t think anything of it,” Carlos reassured him and got up to cross over to him. He wrapped his arms around Seb’s waist and planted a kiss on his neck. “Besides, we’re the epitome of innocence. We both still sleep with stuffed animals,” he grinned.
Seb laughed and pulled him out of the room and downstairs for dinner. Carlos couldn’t believe that all of this happiness was really his to keep.