Maz's Diner was a beacon for weary travelers lost off of I-5 and a home away from home for residents of Gravity Falls. One-eyed Maz had run the greasy spoon for longer than anyone could remember. She was kind, the way she could effortlessly insert herself into your life for the space of a meal and treat you like she was your grandmother, and she did good business.
Everyone stopped by during the week. The regulars were fixtures of the joint, as much a part of the place as the flickering light in the bathroom or the brown stains on the ceiling tiles.
Hux liked to stop in after his shift at work. His boyfriend often claimed to hate the place, but could always be persuaded to meet him for one of Maz's famous blue milkshakes. They, like everyone else in town, have their own way of doing things here.
Kylo always waits there for Hux. He slouches menacingly in a booth while Maz gets him a cup of black coffee. The lights in the diner shine a golden incandescent light on everything as the sun starts to set behind the trees. No one is out on the road. Hux walks in to the tune of a few bells tied to the door frame. Maz shouts a greeting from the back and a few people on bar stools wave over their shoulders. Hux doesn't really pay them much mind and joins Kylo at their booth. He tosses Kylo's black sweatshirt that he used to save Hux's seat back at him, and the boy jumps a bit as though he's being woken up. Maz comes over with the coffee, the small woman teetering with a mug and fresh pot. She asks Kylo if he'd like milk to soften it up and Kylo growls back darkly. Hux kicks his boyfriend under the table and Kylo smirks.
They've lived the same routine for almost two years now. Most of Hux's friends cannot believe their relationship has lasted anywhere near this long. They've told him that Kylo is weird, not really Hux's type at all. Since Hux started working at Skywalker's Mystery Shack he's been strangely fond of weird. He can deal with the black hair extensions and the eyeliner and the nail polish. There's nothing wrong with the black sweatshirts and skin-tight skinny jeans (He's oddly aroused by the last bit).
Kylo is an acquired taste and Hux finds himself liking it more everyday. Except when Kylo is an arrogant, obnoxious pain in the ass, which is a mood he gets into every once and a while. When he does, Hux is always ready to put the bastard right back in line. It's one thing to go through a goth phase and another to try and shove it down everyone else's throats and be an asshole about it.
Hux has kicked Kylo under the table for being an asshole hundreds of times. So often, that even block-headed Kylo understands that refusing milk in his coffee, despite the fact that he hates the taste of black coffee, is an asshole-ish move. He refuses milk again tonight, but it's mostly for Hux's benefit at this point. Even Maz was likely aware of it at this point.
Kylo kicks him back under the table when Maz goes behind the counter again to fix Hux a blue milkshake.
Hux mutters a halfhearted, "Watch it, dumbass", while absently pouring room temperature milk into Kylo's coffee.
"Wendy, is something wrong?"
Hux puts the milk back and begins opening sugar. Two pink packets, just the way he likes it. "No," He stirs the sugar into the drink, now a dark caramel color. "Mr. Skywalker's just on my case again. I don't understand why I keep trying to organize his stupid shack. He never appreciates the fact that he's no longer tripping over every piece of junk he hoards in there. Today, he even asked where the three headed gundark piece went, and I told him I moved it from the employee bathroom to the exhibition room and he...."
At this point, Kylo would take a sip of his coffee, find nothing in it to complain about and zone out of Hux's tirade. His boyfriend was so smart and so motivated and really... on, all the time. His drive to work was that of a lightbulb or a bull dozer. It was nearly impossible for Hux to "turn it off" so to speak without Kylo's help. He wasn't sure if Hux was aware of Kylo's role in the dynamic of their relationship, but Hux had his entire life mapped out. It was unlikely he had overlooked any detail of their symbiosis.
Their booth was the kind with two benches facing each other and a table fixed between them. It was hard to be intimate from opposite sides of a table, but Kylo tried to make it work to ease his boyfriend's ire. By the end of the night they'd be in the same bench, Hux leaning his head against Kylo's shoulder and Kylo nearly falling asleep with him there. Then Hux would suggest they get out of there before Maz asked them to help close up, and they'd escape to Hux's pickup truck.
The bright, frothy blue milkshake arrived at their table after about twenty minutes of waiting. Maz had perfected the art of knowing just how much time a customer could wait for their meal before asking when it would be ready or getting angry. Knowing what they were going to order in advance helped a little, in the case of Hux and his boyfriend, but it still managed to take twenty minutes to make a simple blue milkshake.
Kylo tore the paper wrapping off of a straw and plopped it across from Hux's in the whipped cream. Hux swiped the cherry first before taking his first sip. Between the two of them, the drink was gone in a minute. Without a word, Maz came over with a second.
"-and it really bothers me when you call me Wendy. Use my full name or call me Hux-"
"You don't call me Kylo Ren-"
"Because that's ridiculous, you are the dark lord of nothing."
Kylo leaned across the table to brush a few stray pieces of hair out of Hux's eyes. It was an excuse to touch him, to get closer. "I could be your dark lord."
Hux let a small sideways smile across his lips. "Sometimes you sound almost as crazy as your uncle."
The conversation slipped for a while. Kylo moved to sit next to his boyfriend. They both drew their feet up on the empty bench.
"Your cousins are coming to town for the summer."
Kylo didn't move. "Cousins?"
"Rey and Finn Pines. Your uncle told me today. Looks like I'll be adding babysitting to my resume. It's not like Poe is going to be of any use with children."
The dark eyebrows Hux loved were furrowed in confusion. "I don't have any cousins. Luke told you about them?"
"Just before I left. They're both fourteen. Should be getting into town tomorrow."
Kylo still looked as though someone had slapped him. "That's.... sorry, this is just really weird."
Someone else might have suggested he talk to his parents about mysterious relatives coming to town, but anyone who had even heard of Kylo Ren knew not not to suggest that to him. Hux had met Mr. and Mrs. Solo before and didn't really mind either of them.
Kylo could hardly stand to be in the same room as them anymore. When he turned eighteen he legally changed his name, but until he graduated high school next year, he was pretty much stuck in Gravity Falls.
Hux's parents were strict, but they didn't seem to mind Hux's friend sleeping over every once and a while. They were completely clueless on the whole gay thing, and didn't object to them sleeping in the same room. Other nights, Kylo would sneak into his bedroom after climbing the tree just outside. Still other nights, Hux wasn't sure where his boyfriend slept.
They finished the second milkshake, tossed whatever wadded up bills they had in their pockets on the table, and left with a brief wave to Maz as the door slammed shut. Hux put his arm around Kylo's shoulder as they walked to the car. A few fireflies roamed the edge of the highway.
With the keys in the ignition, the truck's dashboard lit up and they were off into the night. Kylo placed his hand on Hux's thigh as he drove. Coyly, slowly, it swept higher and higher.
"Stop that." He couldn't help the laugh that escaped his throat. His eyes didn't have to leave the road to know that Kylo was smiling rakishly.
The headlights illuminated the dark road ahead. He was headed home though, as he looked in his periphery towards his boyfriend beside him, other plans might be in the works.
They couldn't stay out too late, tomorrow he began his internship at Starkiller Enterprises. He didn't doubt his ability to make a good impression on little to no sleep, but he'd rather not put in the effort.
"Alright." he said at last. "But you'd better be worth it. You know how much tomorrow means to me."
Kylo had gotten the lecture hundreds of times. He wasn't sure why this internship was such a big deal when Hux's dad was an executive in the company. His boyfriend's ambition was boundless. He wanted to a general, then a senator, then the president, then... well, Kylo wasn't sure what could possibly come after that. He thought Emperor Hux had a nice ring to it.
He didn't understand the blind ambition, the ceaseless need to achieve. Kylo had never met anyone like that, certainly no one in Gravity Falls. The fire in Hux's eyes was endlessly charming. He'd perform a sacrifice later, he decided, something to ensure good luck for his partner tomorrow.
Kylo slid across worn leather seat and leaned against Hux. "I get it." He didn't get it, but he didn't have to, just as Hux didn't have to answer with words. Sea green eyes held his before his gaze lowered to rosy lips. They met decisively and Kylo made an effort not to yield to the sudden force of his boyfriend.
Despite Kylo's exterior, he was far softer than Hux. The black eyeliner and hair dye hid a boyish face and satellite dish ears. Others might assume Hux was the gentle one, being physically smaller and with a more socially acceptable aesthetic. Kylo was kisses and closeness. Hux was tangles and teeth.
A hand found itself under the waistband of Hux's jeans. Light from the moon overhead caught the pearly gleam of Hux's grin. They hadn't planned on it, but why not? When he was with Kylo, the plans he was making for his future seemed all the more possible. He wasn't a distraction, he was an asset. Though he would have been hard pressed to actually recall some way that Kylo had aided his political pursuits, if asked he would have answered unquestionably that he had. Everyone in town saw Kylo Ren as a joke, a phase, a lunatic waiting to happen. Maybe there were days that Hux did too.
Hux knew that Kylo Ren made him powerful, and he couldn't explain how.
More nimble hands found the zipper of Kylo's jeans and expertly relieved him of them. Supported by the steering wheel and front seat, Kylo trailed tender kisses like raindrops on the pale white skin of Hux's neck.
Hux did nothing to stop the sigh of release when touched just there and Kylo's kisses were placed just under his jaw. He was almost there and knew Kylo could feel him, knew that with just a bit more he would-
Three thuds against the driver's side window brought everything to a halt.
Looking Hux in the eye, Kylo's mouth fell open. Slowly, he rose his head to view the officer outside the window. Hux, mortified but not getting up, rolled the window down.
The woman gave Kylo an uncomfortable look. She didn't want to do this as much as they didn't want it to happen, but she took her job seriously.
"What are we up to tonight, boys?" Officer Tano asked while trying to avoid looking too far into the truck.
"Oh, for heaven's sake-" Hux pushed Kylo off of him and ignored how disheveled he probably looked.
"Hello, Officer Tano. We'll be on our way now."
"Please don't let it happen again. Isn't it a school night?"
"School let out last week, officer."
Her eyes rose to the sky and her braids rolled off her shoulders. "Don't let me catch you out here again. You know it's private property."
"Understood, officer." He flashed her a small smile that was an attempt at bashfulness. It came off a bit smug.
"Say hello to your father, and Ben say hi to your parents from me. Luke too."
Kylo muttered something darkly under his breath.
"Will do, Ahsoka. Good night."
Officer Tano waited until he had started the truck and pulled back onto the road before gliding past on her motorcycle.
"Why didn't you tell me I was on private property?" hissed Hux.
"How was I supposed to know?"
Hux shook his head. He was starting to feel the hour in his tired eyes. "Where are you staying tonight?" he asked Kylo.
His boyfriend didn't answer right away. "I met a guy who has a place out in the woods. He said I could stay there whenever I wanted."
Hux was confused on several fronts. "That- you didn't- " He started several thoughts, but couldn't seem to find the right one to settle on.
"He said I could pay a little rent, he hunts a lot and doesn't use the cabin when he goes on hunting trips so..." he spoke quickly as though his actions needed defending. "He said he wouldn't be around a lot and I told him it would just be for the summer. Then, he said- if I wanted- I could stay there until I go off to college."
"Who is this guy?" Hux didn't ask why staying with some sketchy stranger was better than living with Hux. He didn't ask why he couldn't get a job and rent an actual apartment. He didn't ask where he was getting the money to pay for the 'small' amount of rent. He wanted to know all of these things, but knew better than to ask them.
"Don't you worry, he's not a new boyfriend." Hux turned red and looked up at the traffic light he had just pulled up to.
"He calls himself Snoke." continued Kylo. "Super old, not really my type." Hux punched Kylo in the arm before accelerating at the light.
"Ow." He rubbed his arm as though mortally wounded. "I haven't met anyone in town who's heard of him. He says he's lived out there all his life."
Hux sensed something else in Kylo, like he felt bad for the old man or something.
"Pull over for a sec."
"I'm not about to get arrested for having sex with you-"
"I have to say something." Hux hated when his boyfriend tried to be serious. He was the serious one, the one who worried about his future, the one with a job, the one trying to be an adult, the worrier.
The truck bounced to a stop on the grassy shoulder. Hux turned off the lights and the engine, in hopes that it would prevent them from being seen off the road.
"I don't have the future you do, Hux." He started. "Stop that, you know it's true." Hux had been about to object.
"I can't live with my parents anymore and being in town means living with them even if I'm not under their roof. I can't leave Gravity Falls until next year and even then it'll be for Sasketchem."
That was the local community college, for students who didn't know what they wanted from life, didn't have the grades to make it anywhere else, or who had done poorly in high school but needed a college degree. It was a smart choice to go to community college, lower tuition meant you weren't gambling away your future on the first few years of college. For people like Hux though, people with high grades and massive dreams, community college seemed like a failure.
"This will be a chance for me to try making it on my own. I can't bother your parents for the rest of my life. They're already sick of me." Hux could try to refute that, but they'd both know it was a lie.
"Fine." said Hux, trying to sound reasonable. "Okay."
Kylo's big brown eyes lit up underneath clouds of black eyeliner. He kissed Hux sweetly and pressed closer.
"No, no. Not again." Hux pulled back from Kylo's lips, refusing to be drawn back in. Kylo grinned and bit his red lower lip.
With a flip of the keys, the engine roared back to life. "So tell me where I'm headed."
It was past one in the morning when the truck sputtered to a stop in front of a dark log cabin in the woods, a half mile from the main road and three miles outside of the center of Gravity Falls.
"This is the place." said Kylo, just as Hux was thinking 'this is the place?'.
There were no lights on in the house, so perhaps daytime would shed a kinder light on the cabin. It appeared in serious disrepair, he could swear he saw a bowling ball sized hole in the roof. The step leading up to the door was caved in and the porch was missing a few planks.
Kylo was beaming. Hux decided he could give the place a chance, at least until his boyfriend hurt himself on a loose floorboard or a mousetrap.
"I'd ask you to come in, but I know you have a busy day tomorrow." Hux appreciated him remembering the internship.
"You know it." They shared a chaste kiss, Hux's hips rucked up against Kylo, his boyfriend's hands around his waist. He buried his head into Kylo's chest.
"Maybe you can come by after work." suggested Hux. "We'll come back here and I can explore your new place?"
Kylo was hesitant to be anywhere near his uncle, but soon relented. "Alright, see you then." They kissed one last time, before Hux turned back, smiling despite himself to get back to the truck.
He was almost back to his parent's house when he remembered that those kids were coming tomorrow. After the internship orientation, he would have about an hour to himself before heading to work, his first day as babysitter. Maybe it wasn't a good idea to have Kylo around the children on their first day.
He pulled the truck into the driveway and hoped, prayed that he was quiet enough not to wake his dad. The lights were out in the house, which was a good sign, but he wouldn't put it past his father to lie in wait in the dark living room.
There was no time to worry about Kylo and the kids. The threat of his uncle would probably keep Kylo at arm's length.
Hux counted himself lucky when all the lights stayed dark as he shut the front door. Navigating his house in the dark wasn't hard and he settled into bed in his clothes. He felt his smartphone hard and cold against his leg and dug it out of his jean pocket before closing his eyes to the relief of sleep.
It lit up.
good night n good luck tmrw
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