Prompt: In Darkest Hour Before Dawn we learn Darla has a new beau. Can we see Calvin and Ethan having dinner with Darla and her new man? Also, Dex gets himself invited.
“Tell me again why I’m doing this?” Calvin grumbled for the hundredth time as he held up two shirts in front of him. He’d been at this for hours. Ethan didn’t mind. It meant he got to ogle his boyfriend in various stages of undress from several angles. This was shirt number twelve. Or was it thirteen? No, twelve. Maybe. Ethan lost count.
“Because it will make your mom happy,” Ethan replied, smiling big when Calvin turned to peer at him.
Calvin let out a sound of disgust, and tossed the two shirts onto the growing pile at the foot of the bed. He headed back to his side of the closet in search of more options. A few months ago, they decided to knock down the wall that separated their bedrooms. After some heavy remodeling, they turned their two-person bachelor pad into a home they shared as a couple. It was strange how so much had changed, yet stayed the same. His relationship with Calvin hadn’t changed as much as he’d thought, and where it had changed, it was all good changes. Sometimes he still freaked out about messing up, but Calvin was always there to reassure him, just as he’d always been. Sometimes it caught him off guard, how much he loved Calvin. He’d always loved him, but now it was a different kind of love. The kind that had Ethan getting lost in his boyfriend’s profile when they were watching TV together. Or how Ethan sought Calvin’s touch, how he itched to have his hands on Calvin whenever he was near, even if it was just the two of them at home.
Ethan loved their apartment. It was big and roomy, yet had a warm cozy feel to it. They kept Ethan’s bed instead of Calvin’s since it was Therian size and had the best mattress ever. Even with Ethan’s weight on it, it didn’t sink which meant Calvin wouldn’t end up rolling down any inclines and getting crushed under Ethan when Ethan turned in his sleep. Ooh! Ethan slyly removed his phone from his pocket and shot off a quick text to Dex about Therian mattress woes and ended it with hashtag Therian problems.
“Are you and Dex still having your little Human/Therian problems hashtag battle?”
So much for being sly.
Ethan shrugged. It was fun. Though now he knew better than to open a text from Dex during a briefing. Maddock was so not impressed, though Ethan had gotten off lucky since their sarge knew exactly who was responsible for Ethan bursting into laughter in the middle of a talk on avoiding fleas. Ooh! He had another one. Hashtag fleas.
“Are you paying attention?”
Ethan nodded. Personally, he thought Calvin looked good in everything, but Calvin wasn’t having any of it. He was too worked up, and had been steadily getting worse since Darla announced she and Armel Kearney were dating.
Armel seemed like a nice guy, and whenever Ethan saw him with Darla he was always sweet and polite. It was early days, but Calvin was taking no chances. The second Darla told him about Armel, Calvin had run the bear Therian’s name through Themis and every international database Themis was connected to. Armel came back squeaky clean. Not even a parking ticket.
After that, Calvin contacted the college where Armel had coached football before he retired. Not one bad thing was said about the guy, not from staff member or student. Calvin had followed the guy’s career way back, talking to everyone he could. Everyone said the same thing. That Armel was a great guy.
“It’s just not possible.”
Ethan studied Calvin as another two shirts were judged.
“What’s not possible?” Ethan asked.
“Armel. There has to be something.”
Ethan got up off the bed, and walked over to Calvin. He took the shirts from him and placed them on the bed before turning to take Calvin’s hand. With a warm smile, Ethan sat, spreading his knees so Calvin could stand between them. His boyfriend was being all pouty and miserable and stubborn. He was adorable.
“Why does there have to be something?” Ethan drew his partner close, ignoring Calvin’s grunt, and wrapped his arms around Calvin’s waist. “Maybe, just maybe, he might be a genuinely good guy.”
Calvin snorted. “Right.”
Maybe it was time to distract his partner for a little bit. Otherwise Calvin would be here all night trying to find something to wear, and they had to be at Darla’s for dinner in less than two hours.
Ethan traced Calvin’s spine with his fingers, loving the feel of Calvin’s soft skin and the way Calvin shivered involuntarily. Smiling, Ethan slid his other hand around Calvin’s side to his abdomen. Calvin inhaled sharply, his big blue eyes darkening.
“What are you doing?”
Ethan leaned in and brushed his lips over Calvin’s, trailing his fingers up from Calvin’s spine to the back of his neck to hold him in place.
“Distracting you,” Ethan said, his voice husky and laced with promise. “Is it working?”
Calvin opened his mouth to reply, and Ethan pounced, grabbing Calvin, turning, and throwing him onto the bed. Calvin yelped before he ended up under Ethan.
“Jesus, Ethan. What are you—”
Ethan kissed Calvin, Calvin’s smaller frame pinned beneath Ethan’s much bigger, heavier body. Calvin moaned into Ethan’s mouth, and when Ethan came up for air, he smiled at Calvin’s flushed cheeks. He loved that he did that to Calvin. Made him blush, got him all flustered.
“Where something blue. It makes your eyes really pop.”
Calvin nodded, dazed. He ran his hands up Ethan’s arms. “I’m being ridiculous, aren’t I?”
“Maybe just a teeny bit,” Ethan said, chuckling when Calvin playfully smacked his arm.
“You’re not supposed to agree with me.”
Ethan laughed and kissed Calvin once more, making sure to put as much eat into it as he could. He thrust his hips against Calvin’s before moving his mouth to Calvin’s neck and nipping at his skin.
“Oh God, Ethan. I can’t show up to dinner with a boner, so you either get up off me or finish what you started.”
Ethan gave Calvin a wicked grin. Hashtag challenge accepted.
Part Two next week 5/18/17.
Copyright © 2017 Charlie Cochet. THIRDS Published by Dreamspinner Press.