He pushed his fingers roughly through Paul’s hair, forcing his head back. Paul... sweet Paul who would never hurt him... he pulled away from the kiss, his hand gripping the dark hair as he moved his mouth over Paul’s neck, watching the bones there move under the skin, watching him swallow. He dipped his tongue into the hollow above his collarbones, and heard Paul give a slightly choked sound.
Paul’s thumbs were resting behind his ears, one hand sliding shakily down to his jaw, and he released his hold on Paul’s hair. They were kissing again and fuck... fuck, he wished he could forget that bitch. This was Paul who he loved. He did love him. Oh God, he did. He loved him impossibly – so much that it hurt. And this was Paul who wanted everything for him. Paul, who would do anything for him.
He pushed and Paul made a short noise when his back hit the wall. He broke from the kiss again, swooping down to catch Paul’s wrists and pinning them to the wall beside Paul’s head. His fingers entwined with the other man’s and he watched Paul smile at him, and his heart broke.
Could you have your heart broken by someone who still loved you? Who was doing nothing to hurt you?
He closed his eyes and leaned down to trace Paul’s ear with his tongue, his lips forming around the lobe. Paul’s breath shuddered from his chest, and he cocked his head, finding Paul’s mouth again.
It wasn’t her he was thinking about... it wasn’t. At this moment it was only him and Paul – as it should be.
But life wasn’t like that, he thought. Life was a fucked up ball of getting high and crashing down. Crashing. Crashing.
Lives crashing, loves colliding and this wonderful man he had against a wall, who didn’t complain that he was holding his wrists too tightly. Paul loved everything he did, and it was in that moment, as their tongues slid against each other in a kiss that was slow and unfrenzied, but so fucking powerful, that he made up his mind. Realized what he had to do, because it would save Paul in the end. And he… he couldn’t shoulder this guilt anymore. It would only be confirming the truth that Paul feared anyway.
And so it was her name that he whispered against Paul’s mouth, when it was only Paul he was thinking about, only Paul his body cried out for in this moment – but he knew... he knew that the second she walked into the room, that all of that would change, and he would need her more than this boy – maybe because she was vulnerable – and the fact remained that he couldn’t let Paul - who had been so good to him, who had been more than he deserved and made him feel like he deserved it – be with him when he was in love with someone else.
Paul pulled away from him and he felt Paul’s hands jerk under his own, but he didn’t let go.
“What?” Paul asked – not believing... he had seen Paul watch him and Laura... he knew that Paul knew but would not admit what was happening – and now it was in the open... and he couldn’t say anything. Not a fucking thing. He forced back the tears that were coming long before they reached his eyes or his expression. He wouldn’t make this harder. He forced down the impulse to tell Paul everything because he always had been able to – things he thought he never thought he would tell anyone.
“What?” Paul asked, finding and clinging to that last bit of hope that it was a mistake – that he wasn’t going to... Oh fuck... fuck...
He pulled back, so much taller than Paul, even though he was younger. He kept Paul’s hands pinned to the wall, but his own hands had slid to Paul’s wrists, because only lovers could entwine their fingers like that. They weren’t lovers anymore.
He turned his face away, then let his hands fall slowly, and Paul’s arms made an odd spasm as though he was going to reach out for him, but didn’t...
Paul, I love you. I love you, I’m sorry. I love you.
But it wasn’t enough. He had ended it. And he knew the exact moment Paul accepted the fact that Chris Dervish no longer loved him.