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God, the girls in America were good; not Russian girls, sure, but they moved what they had and they did it with style. Geno grinned down at the one wriggling between his hands, and jerked his chin at her friend dancing at her back. She faltered, turning her head, and then laughed, twirling out of his reach and into her friend's arms. The beat changed, the spotlights whirled, and when Geno blinked both of them were lost to the crowd.

Geno brought his arms into his chest and shuffled, shaking his head. Someone stumbled into him, and then Sergei was pushing him off to the bar.

"What?" Geno yelled. "I was busy."

"No one needed to see what you were doing out there," Sergei said. "It was like watching Bambi's first steps. You embarrass the whole of Russia."

"Fuck you," Geno said, throwing his arm around Sergei's shoulders. He grinned. "What are we drinking?"

Sergei elbowed him in the ribs, and held up two fingers to the bartender. "Two specials!" he yelled in English, and then "Boilermakers," he said in Russian. "You pay, rookie."

"Hey, three—"

"Years Superleague," Sergei overrode him. "Ha. That works on Wonder Boy, fine, but I've actually seen the Superleague, okay? Get out your wallet."

Geno groaned, but reached into his pocket anyway. He bobbed his head to the music as he dug out a twenty, and slapped it on the bar. The bartender set two beer bottles and two shots of something green and faintly glowing next to the money.

"Pretty sure this isn't how you drink Boilermakers," Geno said.

"Pretty sure I don't care," Sergei said, tossing back the green shot.

Geno laughed, glancing back over the packed club floor. The blacklight spotlight turned Jordy's hair into a beacon, and then swirled away. He couldn't see the other guys, but hell, in this club he probably didn't want to anyway. Geno squinted.

"Where's Sidney?" he asked, picking up his own shot, and sniffing it. It smelled like medicine, and wasn't… He sniffed again. Huh. Toothpaste?

"Took you long enough," Sergei muttered, and clinked his beer bottle against Geno's shot glass.
Geno tossed the shot back, tilting his face to the fan above them and breathing in to keep from coughing. Fuck, he hated mint schnapps, what kind of club was this anyway? He set down the empty glass, and licked his lips, grimacing.

"What?" he asked.

"Forget it," Sergei said, rolling his eyes. "He's at the table, where else?"

"He just stays there," Geno said, swirling his free hand in the air in Sid's direction.

Sergei tilted the beer bottle to his mouth and drained it, shrugging. "Looks like," he said.

Geno looked back towards their table, barely able to make out the peak of Sid's hat in the dark corner he'd found himself. He'd even said something about watching their coats. Geno frowned.

"Why does he even come out, then?" he asked, letting the crowd on the dance floor bump him into Sergei's space.

Sergei raised his eyebrows. He blinked, glanced down at his empty bottle and then back up at
Geno. "Seriously?"

Geno crossed his arms. "What?"

"Fucking hell," Sergei said, shaking his head. "When I'm less drunk remind me to get you better English lessons."




In the car, Colby draped himself across the back bench of Jordy's SUV, which meant his head landed in Sid's lap and his feet in Geno's. "Fuck," he sighed. "Fuck, Sid, you gotta...I'm in the middle here!"

He waved his arms above him, and Sid laughed too loudly, catching Colby's hands before they smacked him in the face. Geno leaned his head back against the seat, and raised his eyebrows. The street lamps made dark hollows of Sid's eyes, and gleamed off his mouth.

"You gotta," Colby said again. "Dude, it's..."

He said something that made Sid tense, knuckles whitening around Colby's wrists. Geno sat up, pushing at Colby's feet, and looked towards the front. No one else had turned around, but no one was talking either, not even Max. Geno glanced at the back of Sergei's neck, and saw him rub his hand over his mouth and shrug. He looked back as Sid pushed Colby's arms down to his chest. Sid laughed again.

"Too much for you, huh, buddy?" he asked. "Just sleep it off okay?"

He glanced over at Geno, and shrugged without looking him in the eyes. Geno smiled, and shrugged back.




There was a weird thing in the locker room the next day, a heaviness that Geno couldn't just put down to hangovers. Colby looked pretty sick, though. Practice hadn't gone well, and it was like Sid had spent the entire time looking for an excuse to slam someone into the boards. Coach had finally set him to running drills until he could calm down. He was still out there.

Geno tied up the laces on his street shoes, and stood. He stretched his arms over his head, and yawned loudly. "Sergei!" he said, dropping his arms. "What are we doing tonight?"

Sergei looked up from his own shoes. "The fuck am I, your girlfriend? Do whatever you want."

Geno rolled his eyes, and scratched through the wet spikes of his hair. "Stop being a bitch, and tell me what the guys are doing tonight."

Sergei grunted, reaching into his locker to pull out his windbreaker. "Drinking, what else? Is there anything else to do in Pittsburgh I don't know about?"

Geno rolled his eyes. "When I'm your age, will I be as pissy as you?"

He walked across the locker room, stepping over Max and Flower wrestling on the floor for what looked like Max's pants. Jordy looked up from Sergei's left, and whipped his towel at Geno's knees.

"Hey," he said.

Geno grinned. "Hey," he said back. "Is night? Club?"

Jordy nodded. He snapped his towel at Sergei's back, cackling when Sergei thumped him on the head. "There is a new one," he said, just a bit more slowly and loudly than Geno knew he normally spoke. He understood more than he could speak these days, but it was still a close call. "It's called Pure."

Sergei muttered something too fast for Geno to catch, and red blotches spread across Jordy's cheeks. He hit out with his towel again, and Sergei grabbed the end of it.

"Knock it off," Sergei said.

Jordy grinned up at him, and yanked on his towel. "Make me."

Geno glanced back behind him, waiting out the point in the tug-of-war when Sergei remembered he was an adult with children, and saw Sidney slink into the locker room, drenched in sweat. His dark hair was flattened against his forehead. He marched, head down, to his seat, and started taking off his skates. Colby sat down next to him, hunched over like his ribs still hurt, and Sidney barely twitched. Colby put his hand on Sid's knee; Sid looked up at him. Geno swallowed, and pressed his thumbnail into the meat of his hand, hard.

"Enough!" Sergei yelled, and Geno whipped his head around just in time to catch Jordy's towel in his face. Jordy's honking laugh sputtered underneath Sergei's grumbling. Geno stumbled back, shaking his head, and let the towel flutter to the ground. Behind them, Max started yelling something about Flower's mother.

"Pure," Sergei said. He raised his arm, and tapped his wristwatch. "We'll pick you up at ten-thirty. Don't wear anything you think looks good on you."




"Black t-shirt and jeans?" Sergei muttered, looking up to the ceiling. "You look like a thug."

"I do not," Geno said, following his gaze. "I'm hardly wearing any jewelry."

He adjusted his necklace without looking, settling his pendant under the collar of his t-shirt.
Pure had turned out to be three levels of neon tubing and a glass dance...cube thing that made Max insist they grab a table on the first floor to enjoy the view. Jordy laughed, and shook him from behind by the shoulders, craning his neck upwards.

"It's mostly dudes," he said, and Flower snorted from his spot in the chair next to Max's seat.

"That's why he likes it," he said, ducking Max's arm.

"I told you we were too early," Sergei said, ruffling the springy red bristles of his hair.

Geno laughed, and glanced over at Sid, sitting to his right. Sid smiled tightly back at him, the same toothless lip stretch that he gave in all the press conferences. He sat with his back straight, hands clasped between his knees. His purple button down shirt was open at the neck. The hostess the staff had assigned to them at the door hovered at his back. She leaned forward, putting her hand on Sid's shoulder for balance. Her entire upper body dipped in between him and Colby, and her long blonde hair fell in a wave down her front.

"We've..." she said something quickly, smiling into Sid's eyes.”...VIP..."

Geno looked away from her painted nails on Sid's arm, and realized his hands had clenched into fists in his lap. He forced them to relax. Sergei shifted next to him, and stood up with a groan.

"You are so lucky my Xenia is out of town," he said, squinting down at him. "Come on, the power of Crosby's name got us the VIP skybox."

"You're the lucky one," Geno said. "I save you from being boring and old."

Sergei snorted. "You mean you make me old," he said.

Geno grinned. He stood up, and suddenly Sid was at his shoulder, nearly stepping into him. Geno backed up, stumbling off the legs of his chair, and stared. Sid nodded, chin bobbing up once and then down again. The hostess was standing next to him, and for a moment he was stuck staring at them both, and the creepy plastic smile they shared. He blinked, and the hostess was moving past them, and Sid's smile had a crack at one end.

"This way, gentlemen," she said, still smiling.

"C'mon Sid," Colby said, and led the way behind her to the elevator.

Somehow, Geno wound up at the back of the car, standing shoulder to shoulder with Sid while everyone else squeezed into the front. Colby was talking to the hostess, occasionally smacking Jordy in the face with a wild hand wave. Geno looked down and over, amused all over again at how short the Great Crosby was next to him, and realized Sid was looking back up at him. He smiled automatically, and Sid's lips twitched. His eyes were a little too white around the rims, and Geno leaned a little closer than he normally allowed himself. Sid didn't like to be touched.

"Lots of pretty girls," Sid said, and coughed, glancing away.

"Yes," Geno said. "Is good?"

"Sure," Sid said, eyebrows growing together. "It's great, just...perfectly great. Yes."

He coughed again, and shifted back and forth on his feet. His shoulder brushed against Geno's and stayed, pressing lightly through Geno's t-shirt. Geno blinked. He breathed in and Sid usually just smelled like soap, or sweat.

The elevator shook to a stop, and Geno looked up to see the double doors slide open. He straightened up, clearing his throat, and followed the guys out, pulling on the hem of his t-shirt. The third floor was open to the dance floor on the second, with wide corridors lit by neon panels that cycled red to pink to yellow to green and back again. Their skybox was one of two, on opposite ends of the walkways, and the walls were clear glass.

Music thundered from speakers Geno couldn't see, loud enough that the bass rumbled the floor beneath him. He stepped into the skybox, nodding at the hostess holding open the door, and threw himself down onto the padded couch pushed back against the far wall. The low table in front of him had everything he liked in a club, trays of water bottles, Heineken and vodka still frosted with cold rattled in time with the music. The hostess closed the door behind them, still smiling, with her on the outside. The noise level dropped.

"How is this supposed to work?" Geno asked, putting his feet up. "If I wanted to just watch girls dance behind glass I'd go home and watch porn."

"The point is to have somewhere to bring the girls back to, dumbass," Sergei said, shoving Geno's feet off the table. "And your porn never has girls in it."

Geno drew his legs up to let Sergei pass. "It has girls sometimes," he muttered, resettling.

Sidney sat down next to him, balancing on the edge of the leather couch, and gripping his knees with both hands. Geno flicked his eyes at Colby on Sid's other side. Colby shrugged.

"Pegging doesn't count," Sergei said, grabbing the neck of the champagne bottle the staff had left in a bucket on the table for them.

"Hey, you're all red," Colby said, reaching over Sid and poking Geno in the shoulder. "No fair talking in Russian all night."

Geno slapped his finger away, and cleared his throat. He met Sid's eyes, and coughed again. "We are Russian," he said.

"Whatever, you're in Pittsburgh now, man," Colby said. "Do as the...everybody does."

"It's like talking to Tolstoy, it really is," Sergei said.

"Fuck you, Gonch," Colby said, flipping him off. "Can we get down to the floor now? Or are we gonna pre-party first?"

"I'll have a drink," Sid said, and grabbed the nearest Heineken.

"And I will drink to that," Jordy said, pouring himself a vodka.

"That's the spirit!" Max said, standing up to clink his own bottle against Sid's. "We'll have your shit squared away in no time."

Flower smacked him, rolling his eyes. Sidney's shoulders drew up to his neck and squeezed. Jordy snorted his drink. Colby groaned, and sat back against the couch, pressing both hands to his face. Geno frowned. He looked at Sergei.

"What'd I miss?" he asked.

Sergei hesitated, rubbing his thumb against his lower lip. His eyes flicked from Sid to him. Geno sat up on the couch, pulling on the hem of his t-shirt. Fucking thing must have shrunk in the wash.

"Sid? Geno wants to know what's going on," Sergei said in English.

"You mean he didn't—" Sidney cut off. He shrugged tightly. "Go ahead."

"I am seriously so sorry," Colby said, staring up at the ceiling.

"Colby talks too much when he's drunk, and Sid is a virgin," Sergei said, switching to Russian. "Apparently tonight's brilliant plan is to get him laid."

Geno blinked. "Excuse me?"

"A virgin," Sergei said, nodding. "Who knew? He went to boarding school after all."

"What does—no, never mind, I don't..." Geno held up his right hand, and pushed up off the couch with his left. He felt the back of his throat tremble, like he'd caught a lungful of smoke somehow, and cleared his throat. "Why are—am I here? I mean, shouldn't this—he—really?"

How different was hockey over here? He'd had his virginity taken care of almost before he'd realized it'd been a problem.

"We're supposed to be giving him a pep talk, or something," Sergei said. "Jordy's idea."

Geno looked down at Sid's frozen face, and then around the room. His throat tightened. A lick of heat flared at the base of his neck.

"I..." Geno coughed. "We go dance. Meet girl and...If you like? Go home. Is no big deal."

For a moment, no one moved, especially not Sid, who looked like he was carved out of sweaty ice, but then Sergei sighed, and Max snickered into his drink which made Fleury smack him, and suddenly Geno felt like he could breathe again. Sid wiped his face with his palm. He stood up, carefully edging out of Geno's space. Colby followed him to the door.

"Good talk, guys," Jordy said.




Sid was a virgin, and tonight was supposed to change that. Twenty minutes on the dance floor had Geno working on the beginnings of a truly spectacular migraine. Everything that wasn't clear glass was white glass, or a neon panel, or a mirror for the spotlights to rebound in his eyes. He'd lost sight of everyone else three remixes ago, and now the crowd was nothing but a blur of movement. Max had been right; the only people with a good view were the ones downstairs. With this crowd, Sid must have—there must already be...

He shaded his eyes; the girl he was dancing with laughed, and threaded her arms around his neck. He looked down at her, pulling her closer with his other arm. He rested his hand low on her naked back, and pinched the tie of her halter top with two fingers. Her arms tightened, holding him closer, as the beat pushed his hips into hers. Her breasts felt good against his chest. He wasn't picky, but tonight was probably looking up for everyone because she was beautiful, and didn't seem to care that he couldn't string three words together that weren’t about hockey.

"You...good?" he heard her ask, candy-gloss lips brushing his cheek.

He grinned, and nodded. She stepped away, dancing him backwards towards the booths lining the cube opposite the bar. The crowd pushed them sideways, caught up in the bass line rippling up from the floor and vibrating against their skin. The collar of his shirt was soaked with sweat, heat rising up from all sides of him. He clutched the girl closer as the light panels switched to purple and the crowd swerved towards the bar. They tripped into an open space, close enough to hear each other laughing, and Geno looked for the elevator, and suddenly there was Sid with a tiny girl. Sid with a girl's hand on his chin, long nails glittering on his cheek, tilting his mouth to hers, and Geno let go of his girl, already moving.

He broke through lines for a living, a crowded dance floor was nothing—even with the heat on all sides and the pounding in his head from the lights and the music. His throat felt tight, a bitter taste lurking at the back of his mouth. Sid's hands were at his sides, fingertips pressing into his thighs, and his neck was twisted only as far as the girl's hand on his face had bent him. Geno ducked around a table littered with empty plastic cups, dripping spilled liquid. Their lips were touching, the girl's fingers stroked Sid's cheek, and then Geno's hand was between them, covering Sid's collarbones and pushing him free. The girl stumbled, and Geno gripped Sid by the collar, pulling him away from the pillar he'd been backed up against.

"What the fuck?" the girl yelled out over the music, hands on her hips.

Geno opened his mouth and...nothing, like his head was nothing but skin and hot air. He looked at Sid’s blank face and red lips, and then back to the girl. She was small and curvy, jeans painted on beneath a tube-top stretched over the kind of breasts people bragged about in locker rooms; perfectly good for what Sid needed.

Geno's stomach turned over, folded, and wrapped itself around his spine. He swallowed, heavily, and still nothing came. The girl was fine, she was fine.

He felt calloused fingers touch the back of his hand. "Geno?" Sid shouted. "Look, Monica, I'm sorry...I..."

Geno turned his head. Sid stared back at him, his face alternately lit and shadowed by the changing lights. "We go," Geno said, holding Sid's eyes. "Is bad business."

"Holy fuck,” the girl said again, “What—"

The crowd drowned out whatever she said next, because Geno let go of Sid's shirt and pushed him by the elbow towards the wall. The pounding in his temples matched the house music pouring out from the speakers. Sid moved ahead of him, shuffling sideways to avoid the crush. A pocket of space opened up just off towards the side. Geno steered Sid into the narrow corridor between high-backed leather booths, where the only light came from the lit exit sign over the fire door. Sid let him push him a few steps further before shaking him off, and twisting around to face him. Geno shook his fingers out. The back of his hand tingled where Sid had touched it. Fuck, he hadn't even had a drink tonight.

"What the hell," Sid said, moving in closer to be heard. "What the fuck, or something?"

Geno shook his head. "No! No camera, she..."

He shrugged, and Sid rolled his eyes. "What?" Sid asked again. "You wanted her?"

"No," Geno said, flinching back. "I not—Sid, you like her?"

Sid blinked. The tip of his tongue flickered out over his lips, pressing in the corner of his mouth.
Geno leaned in again, because it seemed like Sid was allowing that tonight and it was...he took what he could get with Sid. He liked to be close to him, was all. He smelled like himself again, a little more sweat that cologne but...fruit? Like fake strawberries. An ugly thread wound around the back of Geno's skull, and tightened.

"I do," Sid said, "I do, I just..." His eyes fell to Geno's chest. "I don't hate her."

"No hate, so you take home," Geno said, forcing the words out.

Sid glared up at him, crossing his arms in front of his chest. "No people in my place," he said. “You know I hate that.”

Geno snorted. “Is sex, not Mario Kart competition.”

He...why did it matter? It hadn't mattered to him when it'd happened. He'd been sharing a room with six other guys during a tournament, and the only thing that'd mattered was not waking anyone else up. Why—it was such a stupid tiny thing to fixate on, Sid's problem. It didn't mean anything.

"This is why I'm here," Sid said, pointing at the floor. "Right? Since Colby can't shut up? Is...matter now? "

"Don't be baby," Geno said. "You busy before? Fit in schedule now? Is no..." He waved his hands between them, forcing Sid to jerk back. "You know! I know—I know—"

"Everybody knows!" Sid yelled, stepping up and into Geno's space. He grabbed Geno's shirt and shook him. "Everybody fucking--fuck, how long or—"

"Too fast," Geno said, smacking at Sid's arm. "You go too fast again."

Sid's knuckles pressed into his chest. He took a deep breath, and spit his words into Geno's face, one by one. "I. Want. This. Done. Before. Someone. Talks."

Geno shook his head, and felt his jaw clench. "Who talk?" he said, dropping his voice low. "I stop it."

A horrible smirk cracked the line of Sid's mouth, bending his lips in ways Geno had never seen them before. He ground his knuckles into Geno's chest again. "Everybody, Geno," he said.

"Not Col—not everybody," Geno said.

Sid shrugged, jerking his shoulders up and down. "Everybody talks."

"Colby drunk," Geno said, swallowing. "Get funny sometimes."

Sid shrugged again.

There'd been some news program a month ago, Geno remembered, a video about what life was like living with Sidney Crosby at school, and then in Juniors, filled with people Geno'd never heard Sid mention before. Whitney had found it on pay-per-view sports while they were on the road. Geno wrapped his hand around Sid's wrist, feeling the thin skin shake with Sid's pulse. He shook his head again, and Sid moved back, cold air rushing in between them, to lean against the wall. Geno swerved with him, keeping his back to the corridor's entrance.

"So girl keeps quiet?" he asked.

"Jesus, who cares?" Sid asked, rubbing his free hand through his hair. "At least she shuts Max up, you...lucky Sergei's lazy."

"Not lazy," Geno said automatically. "Old."

Sid snorted, and his mouth resettled into a more familiar curve. "Right."

Outside the corridor, the music changed, an electronic shriek chased by a synthesizer solo. Sid looked past him as spotlights suddenly swirled, clusters of tiny dots of lights splashed across Sid's face. He shook his wrist free of Geno's grip and stuffed his hands in his pockets.

"Well," he said, standing away from the wall with his media smile in place. "I think we should go."

"Sid—" Sid stepped to the left, and Geno mirrored him. "Sid—" He stepped to the right, and Geno held up both hands, fingers spread wide. "Sid, wait."

"Geno, what?" Sid asked, crossing his arms over his chest. "We gotta—I have to—"

"Don't have to," Geno said, sour bubbles at the back of his throat.

"Want to, then," Sid said, rolling his eyes. He fidgeted. "It's time, right?"

"You make sound so nice, too," Geno said.

"Oh fuck you," Sid said.

Geno swallowed. His stomach tensed. Sid's eyebrows drew together as his mouth curved downward. Geno put his hands on Sid's shoulders; Sid's muscles felt like iron bars underneath his fingers.

"Geno?" Sid asked.

The music was starting to echo the pounding at the back of Geno's head, ringing out 'stupid, stupid, stupid' alongside every note. Stupid. Stupid to think this mattered, because it didn't, really, only to girls. No one cared anymore; it was just Sid's problem, and they were here so Sid could deal with it. Could get it done, and then do whoever he wanted.

"Why not just fuck before?" he asked, as if it mattered, really, as if it was any of his business in the first place. "You want...special?"

Sid wriggled out of his grasp. "No," he said, taking his hands out of his pockets and crossing his arms. He looked away. "Fuck that, I was busy, okay? I had to go pro first."

Geno pulled down the hem of his shirt, wiping the sweat from his palms. "I not too busy," he said.

Sid's head whipped around, dark curls bouncing off his forehead. He blinked rapidly, and then chuckled like a broken chord. "Right, no, you wouldn't be, huh? Started early, right? All the...whoevers you have on a string."

Geno opened his mouth, and closed it. Sid glared at him, tucking his chin into his chest.

"Have...on string?" Geno repeated, finally.

"You think I...clubs...see you with all them?" Sid asked, waving his hand over Geno's shoulder. "You—" he cut himself off, dropping his eyes.

Geno glanced behind them to the mouth of the corridor, he could see the crowds milling around, but no one looking their way. He stepped towards Sid. "What?" he asked. "Is point of club, meet people and dance."

"Yeah well, I see the way you meet people," Sid said, clenching his teeth. "You think I—"

"You never leave table!" Geno threw his arms up. "You sit and drink one beer, two beer, and watch coats."

"I watch you!" Sid snapped. He lunged, and grabbed the back of Geno's neck, nails clamping down on his skin. Geno's blood shot through him on a rush of adrenaline. His fists flew out to either side, and then unfolded around Sid's elbows, keeping—he didn't know, he—the air he sucked in smelled like Sid, and tremors shook his body.

Sid pulled his head down, tilting his own face upwards until their foreheads touched. "I see you," he said, breath hot in Geno's face, "On girls and—and on that guy—and you just—you—I am right here, I am right here."

Sid pushed forward, yanking at Geno's neck, and crashed their mouths together.

Geno flinched automatically. He stumbled back, and Sid's other hand grabbed for his shoulder. Their mouths broke apart, and Sid lunged closer, snagging Geno's upper lip. Pain flashed up from between Sid's teeth; his tongue pushed the taste of hot copper inside Geno's mouth, licking in and out with rapid swipes and harsh, whining pants of air. Sid's blunt nails drilled into Geno's neck. His tongue was everywhere, on Geno's lips, outside them, dragging up the stubble on his chin in wild spurts like he couldn't figure out how to settle. Fire burned up the center of Geno's chest, throwing sparks along his ribs. He dragged his hands up Sid's arms and wrapped them around his back, pulling him close by his belt loops.

The music grew louder; they were close to the mouth of the corridor. Geno threw his weight forward into Sid's chest, forcing Sid down towards the fire exit, and ran his back up against the wall of the corridor. His knuckles skidded against the rough plaster. Sid's head hit the wall with a dull thud; he moaned, tilting his head upwards, and Geno tasted blood again. He rolled their heads to the side, forcing the kiss to his pace. He thrust his tongue deep and licked over the ridges behind Sid's teeth. He drew back to catch Sid's lower lip between his teeth, diving in again and then slowly pulling out until Sid was shaking against him, mouth open and following where Geno led, jerking his hips in tiny spasms. Geno slid his left hand from Sid's back and around, dipping in between Sid's legs and cupping his inner thigh, gripping just where the heat threatened to burn through Sid's carefully made jeans. He squeezed the meat of Sid's thigh, and rocked the back of his wrist against bulge of Sid's cock.

Sid's nails dropped from Geno’s neck. His arms faltered, and then clenched around Geno, muscles shivering in place. He broke the kiss, knocking his head back into the wall again, and exhaled against Geno's throat, shaking—shaking and pushing the point of his nose into the underside of Geno's jaw. His skin felt feverish; his breath hitched on every inhale. Geno shook his head, trying to clear it, trying to see Sid through the fog of getting what he'd never thought possible, and the hounding of his blood to push his cock into Sid's hip and rock them together.

He leaned his upper body away, and Sid tried to follow, hands scrabbling at Geno's shoulders. Geno pushed him back, untangling his arms and pushing his hands flat on Sid's chest. His palms molded over Sid's nipples, and Sid jerked like he'd been bitten. Geno took a step away, still in the grip of Sid's arms. Sid's head came up off the wall, lips darker than he'd ever seen them, full because he'd been sucking, been biting—

Geno pushed his thumbs underneath Sid's collarbones, and cleared his throat, tossing air into his lungs as fast as he could. Sid glared at him, but his eyes were white all around, and his heartbeat under Geno's palm felt like a jackhammer.

"What?" he snapped. "Don't—don't—" he twitched his head towards the club noises a few feet away from them "—you don't need to—"

"Sid, here?" Geno asked.

"I'm fine," Sid said. "I want it."

Geno shook his head, thinking of being quiet and then not being quiet enough, and Georgi not looking at him the next day. "Is public, is problem. Isn't what you say?"

"I didn't think you were listening."

Sid's hands twisted the fabric of Geno's t-shirt, yanking hard enough to unstick it from his sweaty back. He bit his swollen lower lip, white teeth and red mouth, and Geno hissed, licking the spot on his own mouth where he was pretty certain Sid had broken the skin. Sid froze, eyes wide, and fuck it, fuck, Geno wanted—he wanted so much to hear Sidney make noises, his first—

Geno squeezed his eyes shut. He took a breath. He took another, and when his blood sizzled instead of burned, he opened his eyes.

"We go to my place," he said.

Sidney's jaw flexed, and fuck, the whole of his jaw was red from Geno's stubble. His lips twisted. He let go of Geno's back, pressed his hand to Geno's cock, and squeezed.

Geno groaned. He fisted Sid's t-shirt and dragged him off the wall, close enough to use those extra inches he had on him. Sid licked his lips, mouth open below Geno's.

"Skybox," Geno said. "You go first. I follow."

Slowly, Sid's mouth closed enough to smile.




Geno slumped against the wall of the corridor, and swiped the back of his forearm against his cheeks and chin. He closed his eyes, and pushed his hand down over his cock, shuddering. Home in winter, Sergei in a dress, Jordy eating celer—fuck, oh fuck, Sid had been all over him, like he'd been scared stupid enough to think Geno would pull away,, he had to have been kissed before. It was Sid. Thousands of people wanted to kiss Sid; they even made signs about it, there was no way he'd get to—have to teach Sid how to kiss. His cock twitched beneath his fingers. Geno took his hand away, and drove his thumbnail into his palm until the rest of his body calmed enough not to embarrass him. He winced, feeling out the puffy tissue on his lower lip with the point of his tongue. His neck stung; Sid needed to cut his fucking nails if he was going to do that again…

Right. He opened his eyes, and stood away from the wall. Five minutes was up with change, he was sure. He walked to the edge of the corridor, and stopped until the memory of Sid moaning into his mouth was drowned out by the noise of the crowd and the thudding pulse of the music. Something wet trickled down his chin, and he wiped it away, glancing down at both hands. A thin, dark smudge squiggled across the back of his hand, just a little cut then, it'd probably be gone by morning. Geno flexed his fingers, and grimaced. His knuckles were scraped up; that wall had been rougher than he'd thought.

He dropped his hands and looked around him. The elevators had been near this corridor, the right? No, the left. The right was for the other skybox, the empty one. Geno pushed forward into the crowd, dodging around a lit checkered pillar. A siren went off above his head, splintering into the throb of a drumline. The light panels were flickering between green and blue. The lights turned yellow and held, letting him see through the crowd. He turned sideways to edge past a full table, raising his chin and smiling. A little bubble of space opened up around him as he walked, for some reason. He wiped his chin again. It didn't feel like he was bleeding. He ran his hand through his hair.

The speakers embedded in the wall nearly made him overshoot, but the crowd parted at just the right moment, and Geno dived for the break in traffic. The girls lurking near the elevators fluttered away from the doors as he punched the recall button. Geno grinned and ducked his head, trying not to notice the way they were eyeing him as the doors opened and he stepped in alone. Damn it, he must look like he'd been fucking Sid right into the wall. Geno licked his lips, and took a deep breath. Later.

This time, it felt like the elevator had barely started before the doors trundled open on the third floor. Geno clenched his hands in his pockets as he stepped out. Their floor—their landing really—was empty, not even the hostess they'd been assigned had bothered to stick around. The ground rumbled beneath his feet as he turned towards their skybox. Strip lights he hadn't noticed before lit his path as he walked. He tapped his fingers along the glowing waist-high hand rail. Below him, he could just make out the swirling tide of the dancers. Geno felt his throat tighten.
His breath stuttered in his chest.

He raised his head at the door of the skybox and paused. The glass door and wall were covered. They had blinds? How had that happened? He looked across the open space, just to make sure he was on the right side, but the other skybox was all glass, empty and dark. Right. Okay. He turned back to the door and grabbed the pull bar, poking his tongue back into the sore spot. The door opened easily, and Geno slipped inside.

Sid stood in the space between the table and the L-shaped couch, head down and arms crossed tightly over his chest, squeezing something that looked like a remote control for Star Trek in one hand. His head bobbed up quickly and stayed there as Geno let the door close at his back. Sid's mouth looked scrubbed raw, like he'd been biting his lips, but the corners were pinched. His eyes shifted back and forth. He swallowed, and Geno's gaze locked on the wave of his throat muscles.

Geno's hands twitched. The memory of Sid's body against his own flashed through him. Maybe Sid stood so awkwardly because he’d been touching where Geno had touched him, rubbing his hand against the stiff cock Geno could see pushing at Sid's zipper. While he'd been waiting for Geno. His dick twitched. He stepped forward. Sid's chin lifted and his lips pressed together into a thin line.

"I—they have these privacy screens," he said, gesturing with the hand that held the remote. "The hostess showed me how to use this thing."

"Good," Geno said, still moving.

Sid nodded abruptly. He licked his lips, and rocked back on his heels. "I...could you put the chair against the door?" he asked.

Geno wavered to a stop, caught with one foot in the air. "Sorry?"

Sid unwrapped his arms from his chest, and waved his free hand at something over Geno's shoulder. "The—the chair," he said. "I don't—there's no lock, and I didn't want to... It's some...some kind of fire code, or something."

Geno looked behind him. A cushioned hotel chair leaned against the wall near the door, tucked back behind the shorter section of the couch. He shook his head, and put his foot down. Little tremors of cold were starting to run up and down his spine.

"Sure," he said.

Two quick steps brought him over to the chair. Sid wasn't… Geno glanced over his shoulder as he bent to pick it up with both hands wrapped around the seat. He wasn't—he hadn't changed his mind, had he? Sid looked back at him, breathing hard through his nose; eyebrows drawn together so tightly the skin between his eyebrows was pinched. His thumb was flicking the buttons on the remote so hard they clicked against the casing. Geno whipped his head to the front, and straightened up, holding the chair in front of him. He swallowed. His fingers tapped against the metal frame, one caught on the rough edge of a screw and skidded off.

The back of the chair was just high enough to brush the bottom of the pull bar on the door. Geno slid it in at an angle as closely as possible to covered glass. He stood, and wiped his suddenly sweaty palms down the front of his shirt. He could hear Sid fidgeting behind him, something he only did when he was unhappy, or unsure. Sid didn't believe in wasted movement, Sergei had told him once, after Geno had spent a week convinced Sid was hiding some lower body injury that made him stand so still. Geno's chest...did something to itself, hard enough that it ached all of a sudden, like he'd... He half-turned, and stopped. His face felt hot, but his stomach was cold.

"Sid," he said, and took one full breath. This was fine; this was okay, if Sid had...if Sid still thought he had to go through with anything, he didn't. He swiveled on his heels to face him, tucking one hand underneath his right arm.

"Sid, is not—"

"I took off my shirt," Sid blurted out over him, his face clearing. His tongue flickered out over his lips.

Geno blinked. “Right.”

He tilted his head to the side, taking in Sid's dark purple shirt with each of its silver buttons buttoned all the way to the top, the neat tuck into the tight waistband of his dark jeans. Sid took a step forward, and then rocked back.

"Well, I put it back on again," he muttered, ducking his chin to his chest and looking away. The pinch was back in the middle of his eyebrows.

Geno paused. "Is nice?"

Sid glanced up, and coughed. The corners of his mouth rose and hung there; Geno could still see the flush his stubble had left along Sid's cheek. He clenched his hand under his arm into a fist, and pressed down against his ribs. He smiled back at Sid, feeling like he was showing too many teeth. They stared at each other. Geno forced himself not to look at the flex of Sid's shoulders and focused on his face. Sid's eyes never stopped moving. Geno swallowed. It wasn't his call here, and nothing—nothing was going to make it weird. Weirder. He should just say it, make sure Sid knew he wouldn't tell anyone if Sid didn't want to after all. So what if he was still hard, Geno’d been hard for Georgi. Either way, maybe this was better, now, if it was something he couldn't have.

Geno pressed his fist into his ribs again, and cleared his throat. "We stop?" he asked.

Sid flinched, dropping the remote. It bounced off the table with a sharp clatter of glass bottles and thudded to the floor. His head snapped up, eyes growing wide. "What? No! Why—why would—I'm not wussing out here!"

"Is not wussing," Geno said, moving forward to the edge of the couch. "Is sex, is no wuss in sex."

Sid's mouth opened. He paused, and then went on, "Well, I'm not doing it!"

The strained muscle, or whatever it was, in Geno's chest twisted. He crossed both arms, and forced his shoulders to relax. He focused on the point of Sid's chin; somehow it was easier to look there.

"Okay," Geno said, "but is no..."

He waved his right hand between them, hissing his breath out in frustration. There was a word for this, an English word, and he knew it, it was right there, lurking in the back of his brain... He threw his hand up and dropped it back down. A quick glance up showed Sid staring at him, a muscle in his jaw winding into a knot.

"Is no...penalty?" he finally tried, raising his eyes and already wincing. Fuck, he must sound like a child. "I like, but if you…no, then is fine."

Right, fine. After he drained the entire club of its booze. Sid's eyes widened. His mouth dropped open, and Geno's hands were only half-way raised between them before the flood of words splashed over him. " penalty?" Sid raised his voice, "are you fucking kidding the guys...and are you with...because I am not...I do not...just...and then you fucking...move...fucking try and...I keep ho—"

Geno dropped his hands, and moved in close, kicking an empty beer bottle out of his path. "You know I need slow," he said over the top of Sid's sharp voice.

"I kissed you!" Sid shouted. He jabbed his finger into Geno's pectoral, glaring up at him. "What more do I..."

He pushed his finger deeper into Geno's chest, and then his entire hand, pressing warmth into his skin. Sid shook his head, and suddenly Geno realized Sid's entire body was vibrating in place. Geno's right hand jerked up, and then hovered; his fingertips brushed the cuff of Sid's shirt, skimming the edge where it met Sid's skin. Sid's eyes caught his, and Geno held very still.

"Geno..." Sid said. "Geno, I..."

Sid shook his head, snorting air out of his nose like a bull, and fell back onto the couch. He pushed himself to the edge, hands clasped between his knees, and bowed his head. He shrugged.

Geno licked his lips. The muted noise of the crowd below them swelled around them, almost enough to cover the sounds of Sid's breath. He glanced around the room, at Max and Fleury's jackets tangled together on the back of the couch, and Sergei's blazer half-sliding off the armrest. He looked at the floppy tufts of black hair sticking up all over Sid's bowed head. Sid must have been running his fingers through his hair while he'd waited, to loosen all that gel he'd begun the night with. Slowly, Geno sat down, leaving space between them. He gripped the couch on either side of his knees, and nodded to himself.

From the corner of his eye, he saw Sid peek over at him, before looking away. Tension rubbed holes in his chest, breaking out to scratch its way down his arms and legs. He pressed his lips together, and carefully leaned over to budge his shoulder into Sid's. Sid froze, he could feel it, and then Geno felt the pressure of Sid's shoulder pushing back.

"It's dumb," Sid said. "I'm dumb. I'm supposed to be...I'm a guy and I'm not supposed to..."

Geno leaned a little harder. "Is okay if you not—want me," he said, swallowing.

Sid shivered back from him, just far enough that Geno had to catch his weight on his hand to maintain his balance. His face turned and they looked at each other.

"It's not—I'm nervous, okay?" Sid's face bloomed into red from his forehead to his cheeks. "I'm a fucking punk."

Relief felt like breathing in the first cold air off the rink. Geno's spine uncurled along the back of the couch, and he let his head loll against the leather cushion. He grinned, reaching out to clamp his hand on Sid's shoulder and then shaking it. Sid twisted his upper body to face him, knocking his knee into Geno's leg.

"Nervous?" Geno repeated. "Is only nervous? You still want..."

"Yes, asshole," Sid said, glaring. "I'm fucking not—"

Geno shook his head, and then Sid's shoulder again. "No, is good!" he said. "Is...Sorry, is...Sid, Sid, come."

He pulled at Sid's shoulder, tugging on the fabric of his shirt with two fingers, and Sid toppled into his side like a piece of wood hinged in the middle. Geno let his hand slide along Sid's back, angling out of the way so that Sid's abnormally sharp elbow landed in the couch and not Geno's stomach. Sid's free arm landed across Geno's lap, his hand fumbled and then squeezed Geno's thigh as he leveraged himself up.

"The fuck you smiling at?" Sid muttered, tilting his chin upwards.

Geno half-swallowed his laugh, and shrugged. "I like you," he said.

Sid blinked rapidly, and the angry flush that had been draining from his face flared to brief life. "Fucking...fucking right, you do," he said.

Geno nodded. He leaned his head forward, and brushed his mouth against the tight line of Sid's lips. Sid's hand clenched on his thigh; his thumb beat a nervous drum.

"I never do..." Geno hissed, and tapped his head against Sid's. Fucking English, why couldn't the world speak a real language? "You no want, I never, yes? Any...time."

They were so close; he felt it when Sid's tongue flickered out across his lips. Sid's jaw flexed.

"Yeah," he said, quietly. "Yeah, I know."

Geno nudged his face back up, and set their mouths together. Sid's mouth opened wide, tongue snaking out, but Geno leaned his head back, and curled his fingers in the hair at the nape of Sid's neck. He kissed the corner of Sid's mouth, catching Sid's upper lip between his with soft pulls.

He shivered when Sid’s nose brushed against his own, sliding his lips to the center of Sid's mouth and dipping his tongue inside. He rubbed his open hand up Sid's arm to his shoulder to the side of his neck, sinking a little further down into the couch under his weight. Sid's mouth opened, lips sloppy against his, tongue sliding out and then falling back. Slow, syrupy heat dripped down the back of Geno's throat, and pooled in his belly. Sid's hand pushed and pulled at his thigh, fingers rubbing in deeper and deeper circles. He whined high and soft in the back of his throat. His trapped arm dug into Geno's ribs. Geno's cock hardened against his zipper. He bit down on Sid's lower lip, drawing it out until it slipped free, and then nipped the round of his chin. Geno kissed his jaw, kissed his cheek, and the baby soft lobe of his ear.

"Is good? Okay?" he asked, remembering to open his eyes as he pushed Sid's head to the side to mouth his neck above the collar of his shirt.

Sid shuddered, and nodded, blindly. "Feels—God, feels...yes."

Geno grinned against the line of Sid’s jaw. He set his teeth around the bone and pressed in, right where people couldn't help but see. Sid's entire body spasmed against him, a garbled half-gasp caught in his throat. He pulled back and exhaled like he'd been punched. Sid rocked forward, and straddled him, twisting his jaw free of Geno’s teeth. He settled across Geno's lap, knees digging into the outside of his thighs, hands digging into the meat of his shoulders, and forced his head back against the top cushion, locking their mouths together. Geno groaned, and sucked at Sid's tongue, then chased it back between Sid’s lips. His hands tightened in Sid's hair, nails scraping his skin. He could hear the pounding of his blood racing against the sound of Sid's quick, high breaths.

Sid's heat teased him, inches from his own body and never touching more than a second. He had to be hard, as hard as Geno was, straining beneath him—maybe already leaking in those designer jeans—but Sid’s body wouldn't move, perched over Geno's lap like he was afraid to get close. Geno's hands slipped from the nape of Sid's neck and down his back, stroking along the curve of his spine. He gripped him tight at the waist, and rocked upwards from the couch, holding Sid in place. Sid moaned into his mouth, and shuddered. He twisted his head, wet lips stumbling along Geno's cheek, and Geno dug his fingers into the flex of Sid's muscles as he tried to thrust down to meet Geno's hips.

Geno dug his heels into the carpet, and pulled Sid closer, forcing those legs to spread. Sid's back arched; his ass ground downwards. His hands gripped the couch on either side of Geno's head, mouth open and panting at the ceiling. Sid’s head fell forward on a grinding shove, and hot breath scalded Geno's temple. Fuck, fucking hell, Sid felt good. His weight pressing Geno into the couch, the thick hard feel of his cock, burning even through two sets of jeans. Fuck, he wanted him naked, wanted him stretched out and spread open on his bed. He wanted it so badly, his bones shook.

Geno twined his fingers around Sid's belt loops. He latched his teeth on the collar of Sid's shirt, and tugged at it. The little silver button clasped shut below Sid's Adam's apple sneered at him. Sid's head tilted to the side. His hands clutched Geno's shoulders. Their cocks rubbed together, riding the edge of not enough, and Geno couldn't stand it any longer. He stroked Sid's back to the tangled hair at his neck and then down again, bringing his hands around Sid's waist and rubbing up his chest to his throat. Sid hiccupped, his head rolled up as his eyes met Geno's.

Time stretched to a crawl, heat boiling between them up as Geno inched his fingers underneath the points of Sid's collar and around the button at his throat. Sid swallowed, licking his lips, and Geno's fingertips rode the swell. Sid's breath came like a bellows, deep from his chest, and it was weird that this was the moment; Geno could feel that strangeness poking at them, like he was looking at it from a different room. But it was here for Sid, who'd been naked in so many locker rooms but never for anyone else. Geno held his hands still, and stopped his hips from jerking upwards into Sid's heat as much as he was able. He let Sid breathe, let him vibrate above him, let him press heavy fingers into his shoulders until Geno thought he could feel the whorls of Sid's fingerprints embed into his skin.

Sid watched him, licking his red lips with that sloppy tongue, and when Geno smiled, the corners of his mouth lifted and held. He nodded, one move up and one move down, and Geno kissed him as he unbuttoned that first button. He pushed his mouth down the line of Sid's jaw, setting his teeth against Sid's pulse as the next three opened and settled at his collarbone as Sid lost the next five. Sid kissed the top of his head. His right hand gripped the back of Geno’s neck as he bit down, pressing him closer as he sucked up a bruise and pushed Sid's shirt off his chest.

Sid shivered, dropping his hands and Geno moved away. He pushed his thumbs down the center of Sid's chest, wincing at the sight of his busted knuckles leaving thin red lines on their path to Sid's belly. His skin felt thin on his ribs, and the indentations around his muscles, smooth and pliable, pale like milk. Geno wanted to see him sunbathing, turned golden and smelling like summer grass. He bucked when Geno uncurled his fists and stroked his palms upwards from his flat belly, and groaned when he thumbed the points of his nipples. Geno licked over the red splotch curving over the wing of Sid's collarbone.

"I think you..." he tilted his head up and nipped Sid's lips. "You say, you not—don't? Like touch, yes?"

Sid's eyes squeezed shut. He nodded jerkily, and ground down into Geno's lap. Geno groaned, digging his fingers along the curves of Sid's ribs. They rocked together, harsh and out of rhythm. Sid's hands were wrapped like vises around his shoulders, he'd have bruises tomorrow. Geno sucked at Sid's fat lower lip, and scraped his hands down to Sid's waist. He circled Sid's belly button with his forefinger, dipping in and fighting the urge to topple Sid to the floor and screw him until he could remember as little English as Geno did right now. Fuck English. Fuck the whole language raw.

"I think," Geno gasped, repeating himself. "You much, you cannot have."

Sid's eyes fluttered half-open. His full mouth parted. Geno tucked his hands under the waist of Sid's jeans, his thumbs tapped Sid's belt buckle. This time Sid's nod was so slight, Geno almost didn't catch it.

"I touch you," he said, breath heavy in his throat, the sounds of the club around them a dim rush in his ears, nothing to the harsh buzz of white noise building up from the back of his head. "I touch all of you."

Sid inhaled, body jerking away, and Geno froze, hands curled over the belt buckle. Sid's nostrils flared, twin red spots burning in his face. He stared at Geno, face caught on some expression Geno couldn't figure out, and then Sid shook himself, all over, squeaking the leather couch beneath his knees. Suddenly, he was grinning, and Geno was grinning, and Sid's hands were at Geno's waist, and it was on. He tore Sid's belt open a second faster than Sid's hands on his own button and zipper, and then popped the buttons on Sid's jeans with both hands.

He pulled and Sid sat forward. They toppled sideways, Sid's gasping laugh falling against the side of his face, as they wriggled together, shoving at each other’s jeans and boxers. Geno swung his pendant around to his back, one-handed. Their hands smacked into each other, fingers tangling together until finally Sid was on his back, Geno sandwiched between him and the couch. He slid his left arm up, curving his elbow above the fall of Sid's hair, and flexed his other hand along the hard, curving line of Sid's cock. Sid's thighs opened for him, stomach tensing as Geno's fingers dipped down to his balls. His leg fell off the couch, the heel of his shoe hit the floor. Sid's left hand fumbled at Geno's naked hip, thumb sliding down the groove between his leg and his cock.

Sid licked his lips and looked up at him, panting. His hand shook off Geno's hip; his fingers dragged through his hair before gripping his cock and squeezing tightly. Geno shuddered, and dropped his head, fumbling their mouths into a kiss. He wrapped his fingers just under the sticky head of Sid's cock, and circled his fingertips around the slit until his entire palm felt slick and Sid was whining into his throat. He pumped harder, pulling to the right so that Sid's hips twisted towards him rather than away. Sid's hand clenched and unclenched around Geno's dick, loose enough for Geno to thrust and tight enough for perfection. Sid turned on his side, whipping his loose belt buckle into the side of Geno's knee. Geno hissed, nipping Sid's lip, and curled his free hand around the back of Sid's head. Their knuckles bumped, Geno's foreskin caught on the head of Sid's cock. Sid wriggled, panting into Geno's neck. His fingers opened, sliding to meet Geno's opening hand, and then they were gripped together, slick and tight and hot in each other's grasp, and fucking perfect.

"God, the shit I want to do to you," Geno said, clenching his fingers around Sid's and shuddering. "I want--" he bucked as Sid twisted his fingers, such a fast learner, so fucking good "--you and me in my bed--fuck you, I want to see you in my mouth."

"What are you even saying?"

Sid laughed, a gasping, broken chuckle that vibrated from his body to Geno's and straight to his cock. The couch shook beneath them, rattled on its metal frame, and the heat was going to fry Geno to a crisp, burn him into ash and salt the earth, because Sid was laughing against his skin, sweaty and hard and moaning like he'd forgotten he needed to breathe. Their cocks slid against each other, their fingers met and twisted, and Sid bit down on Geno's arm, teeth half-caught on his t-shirt. He groaned, twisted and shook once, hard and all over, and Geno felt hot liquid splash over his knuckles, slipping down his arm to the couch.

Lightening threw itself along Geno's nerves, clawing out from each point of contact. Sid's fingers fluttered in Geno's, rubbing in tight circles on his shaft, stroking his foreskin, and then the back of Geno's head hit the couch, and Sid's teeth sunk deeper into his arm, lips a lazy pulse on Geno's skin, and Geno was coming, shooting out across Sid's skin.

Sid slumped against him, boneless in a way Geno had never seen or felt before. He rubbed his nose in Geno's biceps, hair a sweaty, gel-sticky mess against Geno's face. Geno closed his eyes, and breathed in. He couldn't smell anything but them, sex and sweat. Slowly, they broke free of each other. Sid leaned back and Geno put his arm around his shoulders to keep him from toppling over to the floor. Sid blinked up at him, mouth bruised, covered in Geno's marks like he'd been mauled, and Geno tried to breathe like a normal person.

"I... I think we ruined your shirt," Sid said.

Geno blinked. He followed Sid's eyes to the shiny, wet streaks decorating his t-shirt, and snorted. He froze, glancing up, and found Sid biting his lip, the corners of his mouth jerking up helplessly. Their eyes met, shivered away, and Sid's honking laugh burst out and Geno found himself giggling into the space between their bodies, red in the face and not caring.

"I...maybe napkin?" Geno asked, and Sid clutched at him, body shaking.

They pulled each other up, still laughing, and Sid leaned against his arm as they used up every cocktail napkin they could find, raiding the trays of mostly untouched booze on the table. Sid rebuttoned his shirt as best he could, turning in a slow circle to find the ones Geno had accidentally popped instead of opened. He stared out at the covered glass walls of the skybox, fingers poking the bruise at his collarbone, and Geno paused with his hands on the top button of his own jeans.


Sid started a little, and looked at him over his shoulder. The corners of his wide smile tightened. Geno swallowed. He ducked his head, and closed his pants. His shirt was a wash, nothing for it. He wiped his hands on his back, grimacing as his sweat turned cool.

"You..." Geno coughed. "You okay?"

He turned before Sid could answer, a tiny dull throb building up the back of his head. Stupid club noise, he always left with a headache. He grabbed Sergei's blazer and stuck his arms into the sleeves. If he buttoned the front, he might be able to pass. He looked up, and Sid stared back at him.

Geno's breath stopped in his chest; his hands clenched on Sergei's blazer. Sid's arms were at his sides, fingers twitching. Sid rubbed his palm along the side of his neck. His mouth pursed, in and out. Geno wanted to shake him, or...shake himself, why it was suddenly so...he hadn't...Sid wasn't--

"It's an optional day," Sid said, blinking. "Tomorrow."

Geno nodded, slowly. "Yes."

Sid walked around the far side of the table towards him, and stopped a foot away. "What were you saying?"

Geno dragged his hands down the lapels of Sergei's blazer. "When?"

"Before...uh, during," Sid swirled his hand in the air towards the couch, and cleared his throat. "I mean, you kinda stopped with the English...there."

Geno inhaled, held it, and stepped forward into Sid's space. He exhaled, and straightened his back. This was ridiculous, this was more than ridiculous, it was stupid. He'd--they'd just fucked on a couch they were probably going to get billed for later, and here they were, acting people who wouldn't ever look each other in the eyes again. As if he'd ever turn Sid away for wanting too much. He reached out, and brushed his fingers along the backs of Sid's hands.

"I say," he said, licking his lips. "I say come home with me. I show you bed; make breakfast. Kick your ass at Mario Kart."

Sid bit his lip, tilting his head to look Geno in the eyes. He turned his hands, and caught Geno's fingers between his own. Slowly, he smiled.