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"Are you aware," Nate hisses in Brad's ear when they're both getting coffee at the super slow machine in the teachers' lounge, "that the students think that we are together?"

Nate doesn't understand this. He doesn't understand how Brad can just calmly wait for the coffee to be ready and pour himself and Nate a cup each. And then take his own sweet damned time to sip as if his mug contained freshly-ground beans from Columbia. He does, however, appreciate the subtle sigh that Brad lets out after his languorous sip, but that's a different matter altogether.

"Ray Person is at fault," Brad says thoughtfully, pushing his glasses upwards with a long finger. "I think he was encouraged by the fair Walter of English Literature. I always knew Shakespeare had the power to corrupt the brains of an overenthused hick."

Nate groans. "I don't have time for this, Brad. The students are gossiping in class when they should be taking their History notes—the exams are in two months!—and I overheard a group of them speculating about the shape of my ass."

"You do have a nice ass."

Coffee splashes onto Nate's favorite shirt. "Not the point, Colbert. The point is that they're concentrating on the wrong things, and that we need to do something about it."

Brad's smile is shark-like. Good. Nate's glad for Brad's analytical brain for once. Ray Person will never know what hit him.


"You are a very bad man." Ray says the next day, storming into a lounge and brandishing a computer printout. "Both of you are very bad men, and not in the kinky sexy way either. I was merely stating the truth regarding your unsexy unkinky uncreative relationship that's filled to the brim with vanilla sex that is not even sex, and you wound me like this. I trusted you, Colbert!"

Nate grins, and leans against the counter beside Brad as Walt walks in, cheeks flushed. Ray becomes noticeably more high-strung, flinging the piece of paper at Brad and Nate before busying himself with the coffee machine, swearing under his breath.

"Ray," Walt begins, hand hovering over Ray's back. "Relax, Ray."

Ray doesn't move an inch.

"It's only a Facebook status change… thing," Walt says, palm finally landing on Ray's shoulder. "Besides, 's not like I'm protesting particularly hard, or anything. Unless you want me to change it?"

Ray turns around slowly, his tie soaked in coffee; Brad looks appropriately disgusted. "I don't want you to change it."

Nate's actually pretty impressed at how red Walt is getting, and kind of wants to see how this will progress, but Brad's clearing his throat and announcing that he's ready to gag at the potential mutual reading of Shakespeare's sonnets, so he allows himself to be led out of the lounge and pressed against the staff entrance, hidden from view by a couple of trees.

"That was resolved quite satisfactorily," Nate murmurs into the curve of Brad's neck.

Then a flash goes off from the window beside the two of them, and Brad's bounding back into the lounge, glasses utterly askew, snarling Ray's name.