It was late in the morning. Cisco was spooning Hartley under their thick, heavy covers. They were both so, so warm. And they didn't have to do anything that day. Nothing to wake up for. Nothing to dress up or suit up for. Both of them having all day off…
Cisco cuddled closer. Hartley sunk back into sleep.
Hartley woke up to the most handsome sight in his life: Cisco smiling at him. Cisco's smile was even warmer than the covers. It brought a smile to Hartley's own face. Hartley wanted Cisco's smile burned into his memory like a brand.
They touched noses. Soft and quick. And, Cisco would readily admit, while Hartley would publicly deny yet privately admit, cute. And their own home was very private.
Cisco said what Hartley assumed was "good morning". Hartley quirked a smile and tilted his head. Cisco blushed a bit, realizing that Hartley couldn't hear him. But before Cisco could apologize, Hartley cupped his cheek and kissed him again.
Cisco signed, "Good morning."
Hartley signed, "Good morning, handsome."
Cisco blushed even more. He even looked away from Hartley.
Hartley had the most adorable boyfriend in the world.
Hartley cupped Cisco's head with both hands this time. They kissed so much. Hartley didn't stop until he'd kissed the shyness away. He wanted Cisco to be proud of how cute he was. Hartley didn't call just anybody cute, after all.
Hartley ended the session with a kiss on the nose.
He signed, "My cute boyfriend."
Cisco gave him a loved, relaxed look.
Finally, they got out of bed. Hartley left his hearing aids in their case. He didn't need them right away. He was glad to not need them on all hours of the day. He loved the sound of Cisco's sweet voice and laughter, as well as his own laughter and music, and the sounds of his rats. It was all the other sounds in the world he could do without.
Hartley fed and watered his rats. Annie and Jump were sleeping in too, but Cannon ate out of his hand. Hartley smiled at her ticklish whiskers. Hartley stroked her when she was finished.
Cannon soon went back to the cuddle puddle, so Hartley went in to the kitchen to find Cisco making waffles. Cisco had recently gotten a mini waffle maker that made skulls into the waffle. He hadn't gotten to use it as much as he'd like. It only made one waffle at a time, so it wasn't practical on busy mornings.
Hartley dug it out of the cabinet for him. Cisco's eyes lit up with excitement. The anticipation of skull waffles!
When they first met, Hartley never realized that appreciating simple pleasures was a good thing. He used to deride Cisco over it. There were a lot of regrets he had over how he used to treat Cisco…
Cisco smooched Hartley's forehead and gently bumped his shoulder. He smiled at Hartley before plugging in the waffle maker.
After breakfast, Hartley put in his hearing aids and asked with a smile, "What do you want to do now?"
"I'm going to play more Crash!" Cisco said. Hartley had gotten him the new one while Cisco was at work, and Cisco had given him a hug. Hartley had been surprised by the move. Later, he'd learned that Cisco hadn't gotten a chance to play the older games. No money for games at the time.
Apparently, this installment of the franchise was rather difficult too. Cisco wrapped himself up in a weighted blanket and played with a wireless controller so he could stay warm.
Hartley, meanwhile, wrapped himself in a lighter, fleece blanket to read one of his favorite books. It was so gay, Hartley could've only dreamed about reading it out in the open at his parents' house. But now it was out in all its rainbow glory.
Hartley didn't have to hide books anymore. Cisco could be bi and a man. They could kiss each other whenever they wanted.
"What are you thinking about?" Cisco asked.
"I'm thinking about how gay I can be now," Hartley blurted out. "It's amazing!"
Cisco paused the game to wipe his eyes.
"Yeah," Cisco said. "It's pretty great."
Hartley laid his head on Cisco's shoulder, book abandoned for the moment. Cisco leaned his head on Hartley's. Bittersweet joy was one of the most overwhelming emotions Hartley ever experienced. It sounded pretty rough on Cisco's end too.
They stayed like that for several long minutes. Collecting themselves took a bit. Hartley nuzzled Cisco's blanketed shoulder; the shorn fuzz of the material comforted him.
He got back to reading, and Cisco got back to gaming. Hartley cheered when Cisco completed another level. He encouraged him when the next level provided even more challenges.
Everything eventually got so frantic and exciting that Hartley had to put his book down. Cisco was timing his moves perfectly. His eyes were on fire with focus. Hartley loved to see it. It was more relaxed than when Cisco was building something to help their teammates. It didn't have the panic of urgency behind it. That and Hartley wouldn't get wrapped up with him. Then they'd both hone in on the project and neglect themselves.
Hartley gave Cisco a victory kiss for completing a time trial. He didn't get a relic or whatever, but he was determined to try again. Hartley admired that. Cisco hopped right back into it.
Hartley watched, rapt with attention, and wrapping his blanket tighter around himself. Cisco was jumping and sliding all over the place, and bouncing on boxes. Anything to grind his old time down. Crash was spinning all over the place, it was great!
When Cisco finally got that relic, he cheered. Hartley congratulated him with another kiss. Something long and just the right amount of heated. Hartley then pulled back with a teasing grin. Cisco gave Hartley a kiss of his own.
Both the controller and the book soon lay abandoned.