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Sasha’s buried in blankets with only his head sticking out. The hotel room is chilly, cold enough that Misha’s skin is going goose-bumped, his nipples pebbling on his bare chest.

There is too much to think about to worry about the cold. Tomorrow they play for more than just pride and bragging rights. Tomorrow there will be scouts watching, scouts from all the Moscow KHL teams, rumor has it, and Nazarov said St. Petersburg was even sending someone. That seems slightly farfetched, Misha thinks, and it’s not like Nazarov would know, but Makeyev hadn’t said anything one way or the other and the idea of it is impossible to stamp out.

Misha shifts slightly, slumping further down the headboard of the lumpy double bed. He needs a shower, he thinks idly, scratching at the dried spunk on his stomach. He needs more time to sleep, too, but he’s more relaxed now than he would have been otherwise, even if he didn’t nap as long as he wanted, so. That’s all right.

He yawns, reaching over to ruffle Sasha’s hair. “Don’t fall asleep,” he warns Sasha as he pulls the blanket further down Sasha’s back.

Sasha curses at him and pulls it back up, over his head, this time. When he speaks his voice is muffled. “I’m not,” he says.

Misha snorts. “Ten minutes.”

“I know.”

Despite the cold, Misha is half asleep himself when Sasha pulls the blankets off his head moments later. “The first thing I’m gonna do when I get drafted is buy a plane ticket somewhere tropical.”

Misha blinks down at Sasha’s face. His dark hair is standing up in fluffy tufts. It makes Sasha look younger than he is, soft and blurred around the edges. “That’s the best idea you’ve had all day,” Misha says. He slides the rest of the way down the headboard and snuggles under the blanket himself, curling around Sasha’s warmth.

Sasha grins, gaze sharpening. “I have the best ideas,” he says, snaking a hand over to cup Misha’s soft cock.

Misha huffs out a laugh and rolls over, trapping Sasha between him and the bed. “You have the worst ideas. We gotta get dressed, like –” he glances over at the clock. “Now, idiot.”

Sasha makes a face. “Fine. Let me up.”

Misha pushes himself up on his arms, pausing before he gets off of Sasha’s body to just look at him; his familiar face, the strong muscle of his shoulders, the cut of his abs. Sasha shoves him when he takes too long and Misha slides out of bed then, sighing. He watches Sasha get up, all long lines and graceful movements, and go dig in his suitcase for a pair of clean underwear.

The first thing Misha is going to buy is a house. He thinks about it while he watches Sasha dress: the kitchen it will have, the bedrooms with new beds, the television he’ll put in the living room.

“C’mon,” Sasha says, shaking Misha out of his reverie. “We’re gonna be late.”

“Yeah.” Misha goes over to his own suitcase. “Sorry.”


There’s always a moment as they walk out the door where Misha feels things reshuffling, snapping back into Just Teammates from whatever else they are to each other behind closed doors. There’s suddenly more space between them, and a different kind of silence.

Most of the team is already milling about the lobby when Sasha and Misha make it downstairs. Yegor spots them and comes over immediately, pulling Sasha into a corner with a hand on his arm. Misha sighs. They’ll be talking of nothing but the game for the rest of the night.

He heads towards the door where Dima is leaning against the wall, hat pulled low over his eyes. “Hey,” Misha says when he’s close enough.

Dima nods at him, just barely. “Did you see Vasily on your way down? I’m starving.” He sounds half asleep, still, and more than a little grumpy. Misha’s mouth quirks up.

Vasgen had promised to treat them all to dinner that night, and past precedent suggests they’re in for a feast. Dima’s impatience is understandable. “Nope, sorry,” Misha says, laughing a little when Dima scowls and pulls his hat down further. “I’m sure it won’t be long now, though.”

The thought of the games coming up is still sitting like a lump of stone in Misha’s stomach, but he’s hungry, too. Some of the guys give a cheer when Vasgen finally exits the elevator into the lobby, and Misha doesn’t raise his voice but he appreciates the sentiment.

He ends up sitting between Yegor and Sasha at the restaurant, across from Kisliy. It’s funny, he thinks, a year ago he might have been the buffer zone that prevented a fight from breaking out over the table, Schukin and Kisliy at each other’s throat every other minute and Sasha picking all the worst times to stick his head in. And now Sasha’s looking across the table, asking Kisliy’s opinion on that one forward from MHC Spartak, and Yegor’s nodding his agreement to Kisley’s analysis.


Makeyev sends them out from the restaurant with a reminder to get enough sleep. Misha watches as his teammates peel off in groups of two or three, some headed further downtown, some wandering across the street to the park, some turning back towards the hotel. He’s still standing just inside the door, finishing wrapping his scarf around his neck, when a hand falls on the back of his neck and squeezes gently.

“Hey,” Sasha says. “You got plans tonight?”

Misha turns to look at him, then shoves the door open. “Nope,” he says, feeling Sasha follow after him. “You?”

Sasha catches him a moment later. “I thought I’d go back to the hotel,” he says. “If you were.” He flushes a little when Misha cuts his eyes sideways, but doesn’t look away.

Misha shrugs. “Yeah, I am,” he says, looking back at the sidewalk. He shoves his hands deeper in the pockets of his coat and grins a little. “Lucky you.”


Sasha is good at kissing. He kisses like he enjoys it, like it’s not just a prelude to other things but the main event itself. It would be easy to get distracted, kissing up against the door of their hotel room, but Misha pulls himself away once Sasha starts mouthing down his neck. “No,” he says, when Sasha leans into him. “C’mon, over here.” He pushes Sasha back towards the bed they’d been fooling around on earlier. “I wanna lay down.”

Sasha sits down on the edge of the bed and works his shoes off, then gets started on his pants. “Did you lock the door?”

Misha huffs out a breath but goes to double check anyway. “Yeah,” he says as he bends down to take off his boots. “It’s good.”

Sasha is already under the covers when Misha climbs into bed. He reaches for Misha and pulls him close, but he squirms away when Misha’s hands come to rest against the bare skin of his ribs. “Your hands are cold.”

Misha rolls his eyes, then in a flash of inspiration digs his fingertips into Sasha’s side, tickling him until Sasha retaliates with a wrestling move that nearly puts them  both on the floor. “I have an idea,” Misha says, rolling onto his back and letting Sasha pin him flat against the mattress.

“Yeah?” Sasha is breathing hard.

“When you take your trip somewhere warm,” Misha says. “You can take me with you.” He raises his eyebrows. “Brilliant, right? No cold hands to deal with.”

Sasha grins. “Perfect. It’s a plan.”

It is a perfect plan. Life doesn’t work out like that, Misha knows, but it’s beautiful to think of nonetheless. “Alright, then,” Misha says, sliding his hands up Sasha’s back. “I’ll hold you to that.”