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Stars Shine Only in the Sky

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Lance slumped in his chair, watching Coran fuss over Keith and make the last adjustments to his suit for the evening’s banquet—an event Lance would have loved to skip, and other different circumstances, he might have been able to, but with Zarkon’s declaration of war? There was no way he could get out of it now, especially since he had brought his half-Galran lover home. He trusted Keith with his life, but he knew not everyone would be as warm and welcoming to his companion. Of course, there would be old-timers who wouldn’t be as friendly towards Lance now as they were when he left. None of that bothered him, though he was sure Keith would blame himself for it all.

His eyes turned up to his lover’s face. The poor man was absolutely uncomfortable in the white Altean suit, though Coran was adjusting it to fit him more in the way he preferred. It wasn’t as stiff and tight as a regular suit might have been, but it wasn’t so loose that it would restrict Keith’s movement. The smaller man seemed to be more comfortable when his range of motion wasn’t hindered, and Lance hoped the whole spectacle tonight wouldn’t be too much for him. But the grumpy expression was not lost on Lance. Not with the way his eyes narrowed, and his lips curled downwards.

“Just for tonight.” He shook his head and managed a tight smile at Keith. He wanted the other man to know he wasn’t happy about this either. He would much rather stay home, hold Keith all night, and just be happy together. He didn’t want to go to this stupid banquet, not after the emotional day the two of them had. “At the very least, it’s free food and drink. I’ll be able to introduce you to my cousin and uncle. Then we can leave as quickly as possible, okay?” Anything to convince Keith, and himself, right?

“Yeah. No problem. I’ll charm the pants and skirts off everybody in that room.” Keith sighed, biting back a few curses. He didn’t care what people thought of him, but the he did care what they thought of Lance.

“Perhaps something more flowing? Something that …” Coran contemplated aloud before he shook his head. “It should be all right Viscount Keith.”

“How about just Keith?”

“Titles are important if you are rubbing shoulders with high society.” Coran waved his hand with a loft air.

Keith curled his lip at the title and gave Lance a pleading look. “I can go live on a nearby moon or something…”

Lance sighed and shook his head. “No.” He had a comment about charming everyone, but he bit it back, and instead he stood. “So you went through all that trouble to be with me, and you already want to leave?” He knew Keith wasn’t serious, but the comment still stung. “Fine. You don’t have to come.” He walked to the wardrobe and pulled out his own uniform, fingers clenching into the fabric. “I’ll make a good excuse for you, don’t worry.”

Keith winced and shared a look with Coran before the tall Altean left the room. “Don’t.” Keith stepped forward and turned Lance around to face him, catching a glimpse of himself in the mirror. The Galra looked pampered and feathered. His hair had been flipped back to curl up at the nape. Black and magenta side locks hung long and accented the sharpness of his jaw. His eyes caught something laying on the table. A cornet of typical Altean royalty but modified to look more like a collar. Keith cocked his head to the side with an ear quirking up in curiosity. The piece was pretty. Sapphire and crystal gems adorned each link with a softly glowing emblem of Lance’s house within the larger center stone.

“I don’t want to be the kind partner you need to make excuses for.” He replied in a slow distracted drawl as he pulled his attention back to Lance. He didn’t need to focus on expensive jewelry. The days of stealing and back street fighting were in the past.

“And I don’t want to force you to do uncomfortable things.” Lance sighed and took the converted necklace from the table, placing it in a box and tucking it into the inside of his jacket. “You’re clearly uncomfortable.” His brows furrowed, and he sighed. “So don’t come if you don’t want to.”

“You didn’t have a problem with that last night. I’m going to have a door handle shaped bruise for weeks! You’re lucky I’m flexible.” Keith’s ear twitched with the loving tease.

“You want me to be there. I’ll be there. I’ll bow and shake hands, eat with utensils, and leave the booze alone.”

For a moment, Lance’s eyes widened, and he stared at Keith. “You didn’t want it?” He did his best to keep the horror off his face, but he was sure he failed. Keith was joking with him, wasn’t he? And Lance didn’t pick up on it. Shame flushed his cheeks and he bowed his head a little. “I want you with me, but you don’t want to go. You clearly hate everything about this. The outfit, the title, the event. How can I make you do something you obviously hate?” He dropped his hands from Keith’s jaw. “And why would I want you to charm the pants and skirts off anyone? Are you looking for a new lover already?” His cheeks puffed out.

“It’s impossible to look when all I see is you.” Keith licked the tip Lance’s nose. “Of course I hate this. But it’s important I do it. It’s a small price to pay.”

“Okay.” Lance kept his cheeks puffed a bit, but his worries left him, well, mostly. He took Keith’s hands and looked down at him. “I suppose I should be more concerned about others looking at you instead. You’re so pretty.”

“Eh?!” Keith's ears twitched. “Where? Get rid of it!”

“How am I supposed to get rid of you?” Lance leaned down and kissed him. “I like how you look in every way. You could be all made up like this, you could be completely disheveled after sleep. It doesn’t matter. You always look amazing.”

“You...” Keith blushed, turning his head to the side. “Your quintessence did this.”

“No. It’s all you. All my quintessence does is heal your wounds and turn you on.” Lance nuzzled his jaw with his lips.

“I didn’t look like this before.” Keith shivered. “You should finish getting dressed.” Despite his words, Keith didn’t move other than to give Lance greater access to the column of his throat.

“You were always beautiful, and you’re right, I should.” Lance placed feather soft kisses to his cheek, his jaw, and then his lips before he stepped back and changed into his most formal uniform. He brushed off his pants and looked at him. “Ready?”

“As ready as I can be.” Keith gave Lance a lopsided grin. “How many Altean women will I have to fight off you?”

“None.” Lance grinned a little. “As soon as we walk in there, they’ll know.” He took one of Keith’s hands, bringing it to his lips and kissing it before letting it fall, though he didn’t let him go.

“So, no fighting?” Keith arched a brow.

“I’d prefer no fighting.” Lance tugged his hand a bit and led him out of the room. “You’re probably imagining all the women will be pissed that I chose you. But the truth is, I never had time for courtship, and anyone I knew, I only knew for a night.”

“We have that in common then.” Keith squeezed Lance’s hand as the doors opened. They were introduced through the booming voice of the cryer. Hundred sets of opalescent eyes focused on the pair. Deep in Keith’s gut, he wanted to crawl away, to find a shadow and wait it out. The Altean splendor surrounded them and the bright whites, blues, silvers, golds, pinks and soft pastels came at the half Galra in a flurry of lights, leaving him with no safe shadowy nook.

Then came the smells. Keith didn’t know how to describe them. It wasn’t the same as the toxic air back home, but oils, flowers, and sickeningly sweet manufactured perfumes forced a twitching of his nose. Altean’s appeared to be offended by their natural scent and went through the extra cost and effort to cover it up.

More food than Keith had seen in his entire life lined the outer wall. Plant-based and meat-based assortments next to continuous fountains of red wine. Keith fought the urge to curl into Lance, to bury his face in his shoulder to hide from the eyes and the smells, but he held strong and nodded his head with confidence. Lance owed him big.

Lance ignored the stares. He held Keith’s hand tightly, both for support and to offer it. A manufactured smile found its way to his lips as he descended the short staircase into the main hall. He had been to so many of these before, he had just grown used to the pomp and circumstance. But today, with someone he wanted to be with, he found it all so dreadful. Was it always this ridiculous? He glanced around the room and snorted at the opulence as he led Keith towards a small cluster of Alteans. Coran was already there, so at least there was one more friendly and familiar face for Keith.


He paused, blinking as the small crowd parted and his cousin stood in the center, as lovely as she had always been, though her eyes bore into him like a mother about to scold her child.

“Allura.” He stopped in front of her, still holding Keith’s hand. “You look lovely as usual.”

“Oh stop it.” That disapproving look vanished, replaced with a warm smile as she embraced him. “I’m so glad you’re home. Father was dreadfully worried about you.” She pulled back enough to turn her attention to Keith. “And you must be Keith? Thank you for taming my rash cousin.”

“I-ah oh!.” Keith bowed. “He was fine. I mean he got me out of prison so—” Keith blinked as he saw the look of panic on Coran’s face. “I mean found me after a mission…or whatever.” Keith sighed and shrugged opting to bow. “I’m unfortunately the one who’s been tamed, Princess.” He took her hand and kissed the back of it because that’s what rich people did.

Lance groaned slightly at the quick glare Allura shot him, but he waved his hand a bit. “I’ll explain everything later.”

Allura smiled at Keith. “Oh, well, I’m glad to finally meet you. Lance sent such gushing praise of you in his correspondences that my father and I knew we had to see for ourselves. He’s never spoken highly of anyone else before.”

“And where is Uncle anyway?”

Allura snorted. “Probably getting lectured about that declaration. Again. Each council member has something different to say about it, though they’re all saying the exact same thing.”

Keith made a study of the room. His ears twitching and swiveling toward their conversation. He counted the exits and open windows. “And what is that, Princess?” Keith asked absently.

“They’re blaming him for everything that happened in the past movement.” Allura shook her head. “And yet at the same time praising him too. He should be here soon.”

Lance glanced at Keith before turning his eyes back to Allura. He knew he didn’t have to say anything to remind her to be careful of her words. They both knew why the old ones would praise her father for his actions. And that was a subject they didn’t need to address. He squeezed Keith’s hand and nodded to the tables of food off to the side. “Are you hungry? Should we get something?”

“Sure. Need anything?” Keith looked over his shoulder indicating he could make it there on his own. “I’m sure you two have a lot you need to discuss. I’m just in the way.”

Lance blinked, but he dropped his hand when Keith turned away from him and towards the tables. “Oh. No…I don’t.” He forced a tight smile to his lips.

“No?” Keith cocked his head, one ear hiking higher. He picked up on Lance’s distress but couldn’t place the reasoning. “It’s just food. I can get you at least that.”

Lance shook his head. “I know.” He knew Keith didn’t understand the real reason he wanted to go over there, so he just dropped it. It was easier, and it would keep the elders from bothering him too much. “Get whatever you want, that’s what it’s there for.”

Keith looked at Lance then back at the food then back at Lance. “O-kay?” Somehow Keith got himself into a damned if he did and damned if he didn’t situation, and his self-preservation skill told him just to stand still. “I can wait.” He rolled on the balls of his feet, drawing a few endeared reactions.

Lance shook his head and kept his hands at his side. His jaw tightened when some of the older council members started heading in their direction, the scowls on their faces clearly directed at Lance’s companion. He clenched his fists before he glanced at Coran.

“Ah!” Coran moved to Keith’s side and rested his hand on his shoulder. “I’ll show you what’s good and what to avoid.” He nudged Keith towards the tables.

Keith nodded his head and went along with the jovial attendant, but not without casting a wary glance over his shoulder at his lover.

Coran leaned over and spoke quietly into Keith’s ear. “They’re going to be stuck in that unpleasant situation for a while. Best to busy ourselves with more fun things.”

Lance stood next to Allura, allowing her to take his arm, her hand gripping his bicep, which she squeezed in silent communication. His other hand clenched into a fist, though he relaxed it and forced one of those mechanical smiles back to his lips as the old men stopped in front of them.

At first the conversation went much in the way Lance expected it to. The situation with Zarkon. The escalation of the of war, which planets had already been targeted. All of it dreadful and brutish, of course. Lance somehow kept a straight face when one of the councilmen started a tirade about the disgusting nature of the Galra. Another tried to bring that back around to Lance and blame him and his lover for the events that transpired. But he controlled his temper and kept up that manufactured smile.

“And aren’t you being reckless, bringing one of -them- here? He’s probably going to kill each and every one of us, and you led him straight to us.”

“My Lord, that’s inexcusably rude.” Allura squeezed Lance’s arm.

“Oh, of course you condone such behavior, Princess. You lack the knowledge and experience to know any better.”

“Excuse me?”

“Ah ah. What my lord obviously meant to say was that it’s no surprise that you support your cousin.” Another man shrugged. “Despite your positions, you two need more experience with other races in order to fully comprehend how serious this is.”

“Oh, but my lords. I do comprehend the seriousness of the situation. After all, I’m the one who fled for my life, hm? I’m the one who was the target of an assassination attempt not that long ago.” Lance smiled through all of it. “And the one you’re talking about? He is the one who stopped it. He is the one protecting me when the guards you appointed can’t. So if that’s reckless, so be it. But he is here with me, and he is staying with me.”

Keith stood at the bountiful table, trapped in his own misery. A misery made tolerable by Coran at his side. Though the red-headed Altean was eventually pulled into other affairs, leaving Keith alone with the roasted hide of some kind of flightless avian creature and endless glasses of wine. Not that wretched nunvill but real alcohol. The kind of drink that left Keith’s cheeks pink and his body buzzing.

“His ears are furry.” Keith twitched.

“He’s smaller than I expected.” A purple lip curled up.

“That’s the one the King’s nephew brought back? I’m not surprised. He always had a compulsion to do tasteless things.” Keith notched his head in agreement. Couldn’t argue there.

“He had his pick, and he chose a primitive species.” Keith heard a growl emanate from his chest. These people were trying to start something.

“Keith? Is that you?!” Keith’s ears perked and spun around.

“By the Stars of Oriande it is!” Keith turned his body and blinked until he found a middle-aged Altean with dark auburn curls and a closely cropped beard. “I never thought I’d see the day!” A red marked hand clapped on Keith’s shoulder.

“Lord Voral.” Keith smiled. “So you did manage to dig your way out of the slums.”

“So you’re the one everyone is making a fuss about?” Voral smacked Keith’s shoulder. “Of all the chances.”

“I guess.” Keith drank from an ornate glass. “At least someone is glad to see me here.”

“Glad? I’m ecstatic! You are causing a stir! Just the shake-up this stuffy court needs to brighten their marks.”

“I’m hoping to be forgettable.”

“Not even remotely. But I see you got your hand into picking one of the biggest pockets there are!” Voral teased, the fondness never leaving his eyes.

“It’s not exactly like that.” Keith sipped his wine.

“No?” A finger graced the edge of Keith’s collar, slow, tender as that of an exploratory lover. Keith’s ear twitched and he stepped away from the touch. He had nothing against Voral. In fact, he had enjoyed their time together. He viewed him as a good man. A good man who got lonely and sought comfort like anyone else. Back home Keith would have leaned into the touch, he would have pressed up close and allowed the Altean to woo him with pretty words and money. That wasn’t Keith anymore.

“No. Please forgive me. It was good seeing you. I’m glad you’re well. But I gotta go.”

“So soon?”

“Yeah, need some air.”

“I can-“

“No, I can find it. Kinda surrounded by it. Thank you.” Keith back stepped out of the banquet and through the doors they’d entered moments ago.

Keith held his arms as he walked down the empty halls. The lights had been dimmed to heard everyone toward the banquet. The effect cast an eerie teal glow over the steel and metal walkways. He thought he’d feel something, being inside the famous Castle of Lions, but the atmosphere felt crypt-like, and inside his emotions remained cold. He wanted to go back to Lance, but if he had to spend one more moment inside that room, he was sure he’d snap and give every one of those nobles exactly what they wanted. Instead he sighed and continued forward. The echoing of his shoes down the corridor his company.

He didn’t know how long he wandered, but he caught the scent of fresh air. He searched for it and came upon a giant archway leading out to a steel and chrome balcony. White curtains billowed in the breeze, beckoning Keith like a curling finger.

Keith stepped out and took his first real breath. The city below was a wonder of ivory and lights. Each glimmer mirroring a star in the sky with buildings gracefully sweeping through the streets to mimic stationary clouds.

The air smelled so fresh and sweet, and Keith smiled. He already knew this scent. It clung to Lance’s skin.

“Amazing isn’t it?” A low voice came from behind him. Keith turned with bristled hair.

“A-Alfor!? I mean King Alfor!” Keith stepped back.

“Oh please. I’m not your king any more than Zarkon was your emperor.” The king smiled warmly. “I’m just some jerk everyone pretends to listen to.” Keith arched a brow, but he wasn’t going to argue. Something about his expression must have expressed his agreement because the man laughed.

“Not even going to argue? Well enough.”

“Well you didn’t say anything that was wrong.” Keith shrugged earning, another laugh. He hopped up on the balcony, legs dangling in the air.

“I can see why he picked you. He always had a knack for finding hidden treasures.”

“Nah. I just happen to know how to breathe when the air is trying to suffocate you. I thought him how.” Keith smirked. He could feel Alfor’s eyes studying him.

“You’ll have to teach me that someday.” A warm smile reached up and brightened weary eyes.

“Maybe I will.”

“Uncle.” Lance stood one step out onto the balcony, looking as though he hadn’t slept in ages. His eyes were dull, and a frown seemed to be permanently etched on his lips. “So this is where you’ve been hiding.” He glanced over at Keith and arched a brow before he turned his attention back to the older man. “Allura is about to lose it on a bunch of cranky old men. Coran is holding her back, but he won’t be able to stop her for long.”

Alfor clapped Lance on the shoulder and squeezed. “Well, I better go back into the den of the wolves then. Thank you for fending them off as long as you could.” He glanced at Keith and smiled, nodding his head before he disappeared into the building.

Lance waited until he heard the footsteps fade before he looked at Keith again. The frown on his lips only deepened, and his eyes started to narrow at the slight flush on Keith’s cheeks. “It looks like you already found someone to replace me, but Voral? Really? And you’re drunk. It’s like you really do want to leave me.”

Keith sighed. “Just someone I met once.” He laid across the railing on his back, the breeze tossing his soft bangs as his arms folded behind his head. “I’m not drunk. Just relaxed.”

“You’re drunk, and that didn’t look like something an acquaintance would do.” Lance frowned and took a few steps towards him. “I thought I was the first who treated you well and made you feel good, but I suppose that isn’t true?” His lips twitched, and the frown remained. “What else have you hidden from me?”

“I only drank enough to stay calm. I didn’t want to embarrass you and give them what they wanted.” Keith turned his head toward the city. “Voral was kind enough. Not all of my customers had a pension for cruelty. I didn’t hate him, and I liked his money.” Keith shrugged. “Did you forget how you found me? Is it a problem now?”

“No, but I just spent the last who knows how long defending you, and yet you’ve got him hanging all over you and touching you…” Lance’s lower lip stuck out. “I don’t want to hear you liked it with anyone else. I don’t want to look over and see you getting that kind of attention from anyone else. Do you know how badly I wanted to tear myself away from everyone and go punch him for touching you like that?” His shoulders slumped, and he bowed his head. “I hated seeing it. And what if you decided to go with him? It would have broken me, and I would have killed him.”

Keith stuck an arm out and wrapped around Lance’s waist, pulling him in. “He knows what I was. And now he knows who I am and where he stands.”

Lance stopped just before the balcony and turned his body enough to lean down and rest his forehead against Keith’s shoulder. “You’re not very good at comforting me and restoring my confidence, are you?” One of his hands rested against one of Keith’s hips, and he sighed. “Especially when you won’t even lie to me and tell me you’ve only ever liked me. I know I’m selfish and possessive…you probably hate it when I get jealous, but I can’t help it. I want to hurt everyone who ever touched you…”

“You’re the only one I’ve loved.” Keith whispered into his hair. “The only one I’ve allowed to dress me up and show me off. The only one I took on a rocket for. The only one who makes me feel desire. Do those amount to anything? And I think your sexy when you’re jealous.”

Lance’s hands slid around Keith’s waist and he pulled himself closer, moving himself so the position was more comfortable for him without him having to climb on the railing too. “Yes, of course. I’m just being pouty because those stupid old men insulted me and insulted you. Allura tried to defend me and they insulted her too. And they just kept going on and on about how you’re going to betray me, and I looked over and that man was touching you. I was so angry…”

“People like them don’t rule us.” Keith shrugged. “We’ve always made our rules.”

Lance mumbled a bit when Keith shrugged, since it moved his head, but he just used it as an opportunity to press his face into Keith’s neck. “They should still shut up about stuff they don’t know. And they called me the ignorant one.” He sighed and nuzzled Keith’s neck. “Comfort me.”

Keith grinned closing his eyes. “Okay. But someone might hear how comforted you are.” He laid his head back against the railing again, to get a better look at Lance’s face as he opened them again.

Lance looked up at him, his eyes half closing. “Then they’ll all know to leave you alone.” He lifted one of his hands from Keith’s hips to touch his cheek. “I’m the only one allowed to touch you like this.”

Keith leaned to his hand, closing his eye and pressing a kiss, feather-light against the fingertips.

Lance smiled slightly at Keith’s actions, his fingers moving and dancing lightly over Keith’s soft, pink cheek. “Keith…”

“Hmmm.” Keith licked his lips. “Comforted?”

“Not nearly enough. I need more” Lance pouted at him. “Lots more. There’s a lot of hurt that needs comforting.”

“Out here. Like this?” Keith licked over his fingers, stretching his neck up to taste the salt of his palm, before he laid back on the large balcony a dramatic arm poised above his head, legs twisting about each other. “Is this what my lord wishes?”

Lance looked down at him and laughed, tears coming to his eyes. “Keith, I just wanted more kisses. There’s no way I’m going to fuck you here with my uncle and cousin around. And I’m especially not going to let Voral or anyone else see or hear you.”

Keith gasped. “You mean you didn’t want the whole room to hear, ‘Ah! Lance! Ah-ah please! Harder! More! Fuck me!” Keith lifted his hips and squirmed, urged on by Lance’s laugh. He got to his elbows and grinned. “Perhaps you’re right.” Keith tried to fight the wicked grin on his lips but gave in to it. “All those old men would die of heart attacks.”

“You can do that when we get home.” Lance laughed and pulled him up even more, so he could kiss him. “I’m the only one allowed to hear you like that. I don’t want to share you at all.”

Keith wrapped his arms around his shoulders to force Lance to hold him. “As you wish.”

“Kiss me.” Lance nipped at his lips and held him closer. “Kiss me until we’re both dizzy.”

Keith pulled Lance in, his hand gripping the hair at the back of his head and he forced their lips together in a heated sloppy crush of every urge he denied himself since stepping into the reception hall. He licked at the corner of Lance’s mouth as he pulled away. “I’m feeling pretty dizzy now, after that, and having a fake orgasm ten stories from the ground does that.” Keith nuzzled Lance’s nose and then leaned up for one more kiss.

He was barely able to catch his breath and focus on the words that Keith uttered after a kiss like that, and for a moment he just moved his lips against the soft ones of his lover before the fog cleared. “Oh? You’re dizzy now? Is that your way to tell me you don’t want to keep kissing me?” Lance pouted against his lips and started to pull himself up, though Keith’s hand was preventing him from moving his head too far.

“My way of trying to make you laugh.” Keith kissed him again. “I love your laugh.” Though his pout had an admirable quality. He kissed the protruding lip then pulled at it gently.

“Oh?” Lance half growled at the tug to his lip and he kissed Keith hotly, pulling him off the balcony and holding him in his arms. “You really want me to laugh? Let’s go home, but let’s walk through there looking as happy as we can.” He kissed him again. “And we can laugh at their disapproving looks.”

“Like this? Really?” Mischief glittered in Keith’s dark eyes. “Your Uncle?”

“Well I can carry you out like this.” Lance chuckled and kissed him. “But maybe it’s best not to give him or Coran a scare about my lack of decorum hm?” He set Keith down on his feet and kissed him again.

“Why stop now??” Keith smirked but found himself disappointed at the ground now below his feet.

Lance shook his head and laughed. “Well, I didn’t attack Voral when I wanted to, so I still have some. I can at least fake it while we go in there.” He spun Keith around and kissed him once before taking his hand. “I can look the part, can’t I?”

“Better than I can. Should we make a second first impression?” Keith grinned, flashing his fangs, ear perked.

“Absolutely.” Lance brought his hand up to his lips and kissed the back of it. “Let’s go.”

“Lead the way, my lord.” Keith poked Lance’s nose, if his hand was there anyway.

Lance smiled and held his hand, pulling him closer to his side as they reentered the room. He ignored the pointed stares of the older men, and he grinned when some of the women started whispering to each other. He kept his eyes forward. He didn’t need to see the disapproval on others’ faces. He didn’t need to get distracted by the lights that shimmered and seemed to make Keith look even more ethereal, though there’s nothing else he would rather look at. So he led Keith towards his uncle, his grin widening with each step. And when they stopped in front of him, he bowed his head before grinning more. “Uncle. Allow me to officially introduce you to my love, Keith. I hope you’ll accept my declaration of partnership.”

“I thought I made my opinion clear.” Alfor smiled and raised his glass. “In times like these I will gladly endorse the happiness of my people where ever they find it.”

Keith leaned against Lance and kissed the back of his hand curling it around his waist. “Well I’m already here and you can’t send me back.”

Coran leaned over to whisper to Allura, “I thought this was supposed to be done tomorrow? Why now?”

“Since my father accepted, now everyone has no choice but to accept Keith and treat him appropriately. Lance is rubbing it in all their faces.” Allura whispered back.

Lance laughed and held Keith closer to his side. “Thank you, Uncle.” He shot a glance over at Voral and smirked before he kissed the top of Keith’s head, holding him closer to his side for a moment before he let him go. “But the most important thing…” He pulled a box out of his uniform jacket, his eyes seeming to shine as he opened it and held up the necklace that was fashioned out of one of his coronets. He moved in front of Keith and smiled down at him. “And now that my uncle accepted, let’s make it official.” He clipped the necklace around Keith’s neck, his fingers grazing the skin and lingering before he pulled his hands back. The crest of his house seemed to glow against Keith’s skin. “There.”

Gasps moved in a wave around the room as the gathered crowd realized what Lance had done. Keith’s skin shivered with the touch, and the gentle glide of Lance’s fingers as he clasped the necklace around his throat. The simple alteration of the Altean headpiece allowed the decoration to be visible but prevented the irritation of Keith’s sensitive ears. Lance had put some serious thought into this and all Keith could do was stare at him.

“Oh? You’re speechless?” Lance whispered as he leaned in. His ears twitched as he heard the murmurs in the crowd, and Allura’s startled gasp only made him grin more. “Then you must really like it.” And without any more hesitation, he leaned down and kissed Keith in front of an entire room of snobs.

His senses returning to him, Keith smirked between their lips, pushing the kiss up and making it harder as he dipped Lance down. His arm around his waist and a smirk on his lips as he pulled away as the crowd rumbled in a mix of laughter and disdainful gasps.

Lance wrapped his arms around Keith’s neck, but couldn’t hold a straight face, and he laughed, half tossing his head back in his mirth. When he found his voice again, he slid his hand over the back of Keith’s neck and let his fingers slide into his hair. “How charming of you, Keith, sweeping me off my feet like that.”

“Told you I’d charm the pants off all Alteans who matter.” Keith grinned, letting Lance right himself.

“I’m the only one that matters.” Lance chuckled as he righted himself and kissed him again. “But not here hm? Well, at least not any more of this.”

“Oh thank goodness.” Allura smiled. “If it got any worse, who knows what we’d see.”

“Nothing for the eyes of a Princess, I’m sure.” Keith slipped his arm back around Lance, letting his nose nuzzle right into his neck. “Permission to take our leave, Alfor?”

The immediate group’s eyes widened at the casual use of the Kings name. Once again, a smile glittered in Alfor’s eyes as he nodded his head. “Very well.” He turned his head about the room. “Is that, purring? His he purring? Are you purring?” He asked his wife, then Lance and Keith with a perplexed brow.

Lance nudged Keith a little when the purring started, as if to indicate he didn’t really want anyone else hearing such a precious sound, though he knew there was nothing he could do about it. “He’s your uncle now, too, so just call him that.” He bowed his head to the others and grinned. “Allura, Uncle, we will see you later.” He started to tug Keith along with him. The faster he got them out of there, the better.

“See yea, Old Man.” Keith grinned running off with Lance, laughing as the doors closed behind them. He swore he heard Alfor’s voice one last time.

“Zarkon never purred.”


“You know he’s going to bring that up next time he sees you.” Lance shook his head, holding Keith’s hand as he helped him enter their carriage. But as he climbed in himself, he offered his companion a smile. “I know we kind of came right here when we landed, so you haven’t seen my villa yet, but…” He leaned in and nuzzled his cheek. “Let’s go home. You can purr as much as you want there.”

“Well, this is going to sound lame but…” Keith nosed into Lance’s cheek, his fingers absently tracing the collar. “I’m already home.” He purred into the soft skin.

“You’re right, it does sound a little lame, but I like it a lot.” Lance turned and kissed his cheek, nuzzling it with his lips. “You are my home, too, you know, even if you’re purring for other men.”

“I can’t control it! It happens when I’m happy.” The pout on Keith’s lips reached ridiculous levels of indignation.

“I know that, but do I have to like that Voral heard it?” Lance nuzzled Keith’s pout with his lips before kissing him. “Maybe you just wanted to make me more jealous?”

“Why would I want that?” Keith’s ears twitched, and he stared over Lance’s shoulder, leaning into him to sit on his lap but place his head in the window. Trees rose out of the earth. Their waxen leaves catching the moonlight and glinting in shades of pink, blues, and deep green. The forest stretched out as far as Keith could see and overwhelming his toxic urban senses.

“I’ve never seen so much green…” He whispered in stupefied awe.

“You seem to like it when I’m jealous.” Lance muttered before the subject changed. He nuzzled Keith’s neck and pouted against the flesh. “It is a lot of green. Well, the good kind of green, not the polluted sky kind of green. The trees make everything feel cleaner. We can always go for a walk tomorrow. I can show you the gardens and the grounds.”

“Gardens?” Keith titled his head.

“There’s a large courtyard garden in the villa. I spend a lot of days out in the gazebo. It’s warm, and the flowers are pretty nice to look at.” Lance kept his lips against Keith’s neck as he spoke.

Keith canted further. “I don’t know what that is.”

“You don’t know what? What a garden is? It’s green. Lots of it. And a lot of other colors.” Lance smiled.

“Lakes too? Like actual lakes?”

“There is a lake in the forest. We have some fountains on the grounds though.” Lance smiled and held Keith closer. “Would you like to see it? The lake?”

“Yeah!” Keith’s back straightened to sit up on Lance’s lap. Even without the large eyes, the perked deep indigo ears would have betrayed Keith’s excitement. “I mean, if there’s time.” He cleared his throat.

“There’s definitely time. Don’t worry about that.” Lance rested his hand on Keith’s back as the carriage came to a halt. “We’re here.” He nodded out the window. Though they were parked just outside the door, it was easy to tell that the villa was more expansive than the penthouse on Tralgnar. Large white columns led to archways that partially shaded the path to the door. Flowering vines curled around and up each column, the closed buds giving hints of purples and magentas. “Ready?”

“Okay.” Keith swallowed and clutched Lance’s hand as he chewed his lip. “This. This is your home?”

“Yes. Well, it’s our home now.” Lance helped him out of the carriage and nodded to the large building in front of him, but then he turned his gaze up to the sky and nudged Keith. “And see how clear it is here?” He smiled, distant stars, unbothered by any foreign light, pierced the dark curtain of the sky with their glittering magnificence. “Maybe it’s too much to take in all at once?” He took a few steps towards the large double doors that led inside.

“I-I…” Keith walked forward, awe dropping his jaw as he appraised the dark canvass. “I’ve never seen anything like this before.” His eyes adjusted to the dark, and he was thrown back by the brilliance streaking over the sky. Gold, blue, red, millions of stars, planets and galaxies filled the infinite expanse. He felt small. Insignificant. Peaceful. “All of that. Going on up there. I wonder if anyone is staring back."

Lance’s lips twitched, but he shrugged. “Probably. I mean we’re looking up, so someone somewhere must be doing the same thing, right? He took Keith’s hand and looked at him. “Let’s go inside.”

“Inside?” Keith started forward but stopped short. “This?” He slipped his hand from Lance and stepped over to one of the buds hadn’t closed for the evening and he crouched to be level with a palm-sized pink flower. His finger reached out and with a gentle touch he stroked over a petal. “It’s soft. It smells like.” He leaned further in. “Like something from your bath.” He pulled his finger back as if afraid prolonged contact would ruin the delicate plant.

“Oh. That’s because we use those flowers to make the oils.” Lance let his hands drop to the side as he watched Keith, but then he stepped forward and carefully plucked the blossom the smaller man was admiring. “Here, take it.”

“You don’t hav--” Keith blinked at the flower in his hand, cradling it with a feather’s touch. “Will it die now?” One ear dropping forward.

“The plant will not die because I took a flower. A new one will sprout in its place soon. This will not last long, but there are ways to preserve it.” Lance stroked Keith’s drooped ear. “Don’t be sad.”

“I’m not sad.” Keith leaned his head to Lance’s hand, weak to his touch. “Do, do I look sad?”

“You did for a moment.” Lance leaned in and pressed his lips to Keith’s forehead. “I was wondering if you needed me to cheer you up.”

“Pretty stupid to get worked up over a flower.”

“Is it?” Lance kissed his nose and led him through the door. “So you don’t want me to cheer you up?”

“Hmm, maybe a bit more cheering up. It was a very pretty flower.” Keith stilled and gazed around the foyer. Twin staircases wrapped down to the center floor leading up to open hallways, with doors and archways three times the size needed for Altean height. White, sapphire, and silver lined the walls and floors with etchings and hanging tapestries in a variety of styles the street rat didn’t pretend to recognize. Sigils of Lance’s house showed in random locations through the space. Markings to show ownership and to claim territory to politely avoid confrontations from others of lesser or greater status. Even colors could be owned, as Keith observed. A claw etched over the centerpiece of Keith’s necklace as a hand pressed against his stomach searching for the small dent of his navel ring. Two months ago he would have scorned anyone who’d willingly allowed themselves to be branded, and here he was.

Lance led him through the opulent Hallway and up the left staircase. “Then I will do more than cheer you up.” Their footsteps echoed throughout the large marbled hallway that led from the center of the villa. They passed under one of the carved archways, and Lance pushed open the door at the end of the hallway. “This is our suite.” He led Keith into the sitting room, the echoing of their footfalls now muted by the blue and silver rug that almost filled the entire room. Plush, blue sofas rested against three of the four walls. Marbled end tables held lamps or vases of flowers from the garden. Blue and silver cushions rested in front of an unlit fireplace. Beyond the fireplace was another ornate door. “Here, or in the bedroom? Perhaps the bath?”

“I don’t know. I’ve never… the hotel was one thing. This… I’ve never—” Keith walked into the room, his large, dark pupils taking in all they could. He dragged his hand across the back of the couch and shivered. He’d never touched anything so soft. A purr rose up from the core of his body. “Is this real?”

“Yes. All of it is real. I know there’s way more here than there was in the hotel. So I’m sorry if it’s overwhelming.” Lance sat on the couch and looked at him, offering him a little smile. “But I wasn’t kidding when I said I would spoil you. Everything that’s mine is yours.”

“I get it, but…” Keith moved about the room, his fingers taking in the texture of the objects he passed. The table was glossy and polished, the wall had a stone deco feel, and Keith liked the scratchy roughness. The tempered glass windows, infused with alchemy, bubbled in tasteful imperfection. “How could anyone get used to this?” He knew Lance’s eyes watched him and the back of his neck grew hot. His posture changed in reply to show the slope of his hip.

“Then don’t get used to it. Be awed every time you walk into a room, so I can see how utterly charming you are. But for now, should I light the fire?” Lance’s eyes moved to the slight curve of Keith’s hip, and he licked his own lips.

The atmosphere shifted, and Keith relaxed. He knew this sensation. He recognized the thick air and the subtle scent of arousal. “Light a fire? An Altean doing something so primal?” Keith glanced over his shoulder. “Don’t you just snap your fingers and control the temperature of the room?” In time with his words, Keith snapped the shoulder hook on his top, letting curl back and down from his shoulder blade.

“But a fire is so much…cozier, and it’s sexy, isn’t it? But if you don’t want me to, I suppose that’s all right.” Lance lounged back on the couch, eyes lingering on that now bare shoulder.

The dance of muscle moving under velvet skin drew the eye as Keith pulled his arms from the confining top. “Are you telling me, that’s something you can actually do?”

“Light a fire? Yes. Heat you up? Yes. Make you sweat? Yes. I can do all of those things if you’d like me to.” Lance watched him and leaned forward.

“And how do you do that?” Keith slipped one striped thigh out of his pants, coming down to slow revealing bend as he removed the other.

Lance’s eyes darkened to a deep smolder, watching each movement of Keith’s thigh, and then the other as they were both exposed. “Do what?”

“Heat me up?” Keith allowed his Galran accent to thicken around the words he spoke. “Make me sweat.” He hooked his fingers back into the band of his under-cloth, pulling them halfway over the curve of his ass.

“Well, I certainly can’t do it if you’re that far away from me.” Lance’s gaze moved as Keith’s clothing did.

Keith pushed the last bit of clothing down and stepped from the puddle of cloth. He smirked knowing he had Lance’s line of sight captured by his fingers. He dropped his hand and dragged his finger up the side of his leg and around his hip. “Do want to come to me? Or should I come to you?” He turned, the gems around his neck and over his stomach catching the light as he faced his lover.

“Well, aren’t you supposed to be the one comforting me after all of that before? Or did you forget?” Lance’s lower lip stuck out and he looked up at his face. “Don’t tease me anymore.”

“I wonder which of us is spoiled.” Keith chuckled. “I thought you enjoyed games.” He sauntered over to Lance, his touch now gracing across each stone of the collar around his neck. His walk slow with exaggerated rolls of his hips, coming to a stop between Lance’s legs. “You come home and become so serious.”

“I do like games, but I don’t like waiting to play them.” Lance reached up and slid his hand over Keith’s hip when stopped. “Do you think you spoil me?” He leaned forward and grinned. “Or is that what you plan to do?”

“I think you’re spoiled plenty.” Keith motioned around the room and dragged the back of his claws down the side of one soft cheek.

Lance pulled him close enough that he could rest his forehead against Keith’s stomach, though he didn’t allow the contact just yet. “I suppose that’s true, and I never claimed otherwise, but do you spoil me?”

“I’m wearing all the evidence you should need for that.” Keith’s nails carded through Lance’s hair.

“I suppose that’s also true” Lance slid a finger over the small chain against Keith’s stomach. He turned his head up towards his lover. “But right now you’ve gotten me all worked up from that tease. Kiss me.”

Keith hooked his finger under Lance’s chin. “Simple enough.” He purred, ears twitching forward. “What else should I do?” Keith pressed in closer, getting his knee up on the couch and between his legs. “Maybe you should teach me some Altean things.”

“Hm. That depends on how well you kiss me.” Lance slid his hand down his back, the tips of his fingers stopping at the small dip just above the gentle swell of his backside. “And what sort of Altean things do you want to learn?”

“Anything you want.” Keith pressed the length of his body closer to Lance, making sure to drag his thigh against the building heat between his legs. He took his mouth before a sound of protest could escape and he devoured the hot cavern as he forced Lance’s head back with a gentle pull of his hair.

Before Lance could say anything, he was lost to Keith’s kiss. His eyes started to close, and he dropped his hand from Keith’s back and started to fumble at the clasps of own uniform top. “Nn…”

“Good enough, Altean?” Keith stroked Lance’s jaw as he broke the kiss, licking himself from his lips.

Lance let his uniform fall open as he leaned forward to try to catch Keith’s lips again. “More.”

“More?” Keith purred and kissed him again, this time forcefully tugging the top of Lance’s shirt down to the bend of his elbows, binding his arms to his sides. He ears perked forward as he studied the sight. Dark sapphire eyes, flushed brown skin, and short ragged breaths, Keith was wrecking him and enjoying every second of it. “How much can you handle?”

Lance hissed slightly when he couldn’t move his arms with the way Keith pushed his top down, but he looked at him, lips curving upward. “I can handle you, if you’ll let me.” He leaned up again and tasted Keith’s lips. “All of you.”

“All of me?” Keith’s laugh came out low, but not mocking as he straightened his back, still petting Lance’s jaw. “How would you handle me?”

“Unbind my arms and I’ll show you.” Keith’s laugh warmed Lance in ways he couldn’t quite express with words, and he squirmed and pulled at the top keeping his arms at his sides. “While you’re at it, help me with the rest.”

“Are you in a position to give orders?” Keith grinned. “Does my Altean not like being bound?” As he spoke he dragged his hands down well-toned arms. “I suppose I can release you.” He teased with a curling lick at the tip of Lance’s nose.

“You are spoiled.” Keith tossed the shirt aside and made quick work of his pants where they joined a similar fate as his top. Grinning he rolled a finger over one perking nipple, not willing to give Lance the upper hand. At least, not yet.

Lance’s muscles seemed to jump with each of Keith’s touches, and he settled back with no complaints once he was freed from his clothing. “I never said I didn’t like it. I just wouldn’t have been able to handle you if I couldn’t move my hands.” He suppressed a shudder as Keith teased him, and he looked up at the other man. A glint came to his eye as his hands both moved around to Keith’s ass and gripped it. “And I know you like this.”

Keith leaned forward, his knees to either side of Lance’s hips. The position hid the quiver running through him as those large hands gripped the flanks of his backside, squeezing soft plaint flesh and pulling the smaller man closer. “I’m not hard to read.”

Fire burned in the half blood’s eyes, ignited by the flush on his cheeks and rushing into a full plum colored bloom over his cheeks. He leaned down, pressing their foreheads together, their lips close enough to share heated breaths. “Tell me what you want.” His claw gently dimpled Lance’s lip as he pulled it down.

Lance’s eyes began to close at Keith’s proximity, and his hands squeezed once more as he pulled the half-Galran’s body against his, though he was careful not to press his heat into the flesh of Keith’s thigh more than was necessary for him to feel the warmth that surged through his body. “I want you.” He whispered, pulling his head away from Keith’s only enough to free his lips before he was close again, crushing their mouths together with a half-moan.

Keith finished his moan as he pulled his head back, fire meeting determination as their gazes clashed. The arch of Lance’s brow, the focus in his eyes, the need for him burning into his leg. Lance belonged to him. Keith knew it. Lance knew it. Everyone at the banquet knew it. This silver and burnt honey haired godling with perfect flesh and sea-colored eyes belonged to him. A thought passed through his eyes. One he never dared to dwell on for longer than a second until now.

“Lance,” Keith whispered and twisted his neck to nibble across the shell of his ear, his tongue twisting over the blunt tip. “I want something.”

Lance’s eyes closed, and his head tilted as Keith paid special attention to his ear, the action causing a jolt of pleasure to shoot through his body, and his sex twitched against Keith’s thigh. “Nn…What is it?”

The warm coil of heat in Keith’s stomach sparked, making his muscles jump and his throat start to close as the words tried to leave his mouth. Outside of passionate pleas and manipulative begs, Keith had never asked a partner for anything more than what they freely gave him. As a creature purchased for their pleasure, he had no right to ask for anything on his own. Lance was different. Lance never treated him like the others. Not since their first night, and even that had been something unlike anything Keith experienced before. All he had to do was ask.

His lips moved again, “I want…” Keith swallowed the words down again. To speak it would acknowledge themselves as equals. To ask it would be for Lance to lower himself to a station unbecoming of him. Keith didn’t know what would happen if he clipped those wings and brought his heavenly creature further down to where the demons dwelled.

“Hm?” Lance didn’t bother hiding his confusion when he opened his eyes and looked at his lover. Moments before he made a declaration. He wanted something, but now he didn’t seem to have the confidence to say what it was. “What is it, kitten?” He lifted one hand from its comfortable position against Keith’s backside and stroked one of those velveteen ears. “Tell me. You never ask for anything, so I will do my best to grant you what you wish.”

“Really?” Keith leaned toward his hand, the coil getting hotter and melting lower in his gut. “You won’t get mad?”

“What? Of course I won’t get mad.” Lance slid a finger over his ear. “Tell me.”

“I want to know what it feels like.” Keith’s eyes opened half way. “Your mouth. On me. I want to know.”

Whatever Lance was expecting, it certainly wasn’t that. The request was so simple, and yet it carried so much weight. If Keith was afraid to ask, then he must have thought something was wrong it with, but that could only be because no one had ever done that for him before, right? Lance’s eyes darkened at the thought and he leaned in to kiss him. “Yes, I will gladly do that for you.”

Keith blinked into the kiss, not sure what answer he thought Lance would give him. He instantly wished he could undo it, so he back peddled his words. “You don’t have to. Not right now. What we do is good for me.” He nosed Lance’s cheek. “You like this.” His thigh moved to press his need.

“I…nnn. I know I don’t have to. I want to.” Lance kissed him again. “Let me show you. Let me give you what you want.”

“You want to?” Keith lifted away to peer into Lance’s eyes. The scrutiny obvious even as lust filled wake of his amethysts orbs.

“I do.” Lance offered Keith his warmest and most sincere smile. “You never ask for anything, and I don’t want to deny you this.”

With Lance’s smile, Keith caved. “Okay.” A long awkward silence filled the space until Keith spoke again. “What do I do?”

Lance nudged Keith off his lap. “Lay back and get comfortable.” He tapped that purple nose. “Let me take care of you.”

“O-okay.” Keith laid back, his motions jerky and hesitant until he found his head back against a pillow staring back at Lance. The bigger man leaned over him causing Keith’s heart threatening to gallop away and to take his breath with it.

“I-should I shower or something first?” Keith twisted to the side in a rare display of modesty. The virginal insecurity telling Lance more than enough about his lover’s sex life until now.

“Keith…” Lance smiled and slid his hands over his lover’s thighs, pushing them so he couldn’t turn away from him anymore. “You don’t need to shower. Just try to relax. I will treat you the way you deserve to be treated.” The fact that Keith was so nervous caused a little pride to swell in his chest. Lance was about to have another of his firsts, and that calmed the jealousy that constantly surged inside him. It still made him hate everyone who ever had Keith, but he could get over that a bit. At least he could try. “Hold onto me if you need to,” he whispered against Keith’s lips before those kisses progressed down his chin and neck.

“I don’t... it’s…” Keith flattened his hips at Lance’s gentle urging. “This isn’t really comforting you.” He whimpered out, his earlier bravado evaporating in a cloud uncertainty. Though with each hot soft kiss Lance placed over his skin, Keith relaxed further into the couch. The metal spring turning tighter inside, then slacking as Lance found a particular spot and released the tension mounting in his taut muscles.

“It is comforting me.” Lance murmured against Keith’s flesh as he placed open-mouthed kisses down his chest and over his stomach. His tongue flicked out to circle his navel and trace the jewel there. “I’m very comforted knowing that I’m the only one to do this for you.” His hands slid up his thighs and pushed them open more as he settled himself between them. “That no one else has pleasured you like this.” He slid one finger up Keith’s length, teasing him just slightly as he shifted to lower himself more.

“Ng!” Keith arched, then settled back into the garden scented couch. His mind started to wander, his eyes drifting shut as Lance messaged his flesh with his perfect lips and practiced tongue. His hesitation melted away and he started to long to feel those attentions on over his sex. The same tongue that often twisted expertly in with his own and left him breathless and dizzy would be moving over the hottest part of him. Another tiny cry escaped him, and Keith’s hips thrust up. His need already aching as his imagination got the better of him.

“This is how you make me feel.” Lance kissed down Keith’s lower abdomen, smirking as he got closer to Keith’s sex. “You really like it, don’t you?”

“Un.” Goosebumps moving in a wave caused a tingle and a squeak to raise from his throat and cut his agreement down to a simple syllable.

“That’s a yes, right?” Lance looked up at Keith as best he could without lifting his head.

“Yes. I couldn’t finish… Don’t stop… please?” Keith begged from behind nail nibbled fingers.

“All right.” Lance licked down one of Keith’s love-lines towards his heat.

Instinct drove Keith’s hand into Lance’s hair, gripping the fine locks until his back arched from the cushion. “AH!”

Lance dropped lower and slid his tongue up along the length of Keith’s heat and over his tip, licking up the first precious drop of precum.

“W-wai- LANCE!” Keith pulled at Lance’s hair and his own in a sudden fist full of blissful agony.

Lance was only encouraged by Keith’s actions and sounds as he took Keith into his mouth, his hands holding the half-Galran’s thighs open, so he wouldn’t crush his head.

Keith’s jaw clenched, fangs bared as keened out another note of pleasure. Lance’s mouth encased him in heat; lips held tight providing a wet friction unlike anything Keith had ever experienced.

Lance took more of Keith in, his tongue pressing against hot flesh as he pushed his head down. His eyes half closed, and he groaned around his lover to add a little vibration, hoping to nudge Keith closer to the edge. He was already so worked up already.

“Fuck!” Keith’s spine went ridged and both hands lowered, gripping Lance’s ears to pull him down more against him.

“Mmph!” The slight spike of pain that surged in his ears caused Lance to whimper around Keith, but he took in as much as he could, fingers pressing into the soft meat of Keith’s thighs.

With one last tug of warning, the burning coil snapped, his muscles spasmed and quivered as his body let loose all the heat it built up. His eyes dilated, breath panting, and his heart about to burst his ears, thrumming with enough force a shiver echoed every pump. He sank into the couch, one leg slipping to the floor, thighs spread wide, the other curled and resting over Lance’s lower back.

Lance took all of Keith’s warmth in, feeling it fill him and not pulling back until Keith was done. When he was, he lifted his head and grinned up at him. “You enjoyed it, didn’t you?” Although the answer was obvious, Lance wanted to hear Keith’s voice.

“Nmn.” Keith’s voice was rough and used. Had he used it that much? He couldn’t remember. “I…” He hugged the other’s head gently against his stomach with a lazy purr.

“You must have if you’re acting like this.” Lance chuckled and placed a soft kiss to the skin beneath him.

“Amazing…” Keith stared down at his lover, catching his eyes. “I didn’t… I should have warned you. I’m sorry.”

Lance chuckled. “You don’t have to apologize for your orgasm, you know. Your enjoyment was worth the slight surprise.”

Keith danced his fingers over Lance’s lips. A smile, drunk, and lazy curving the edges of his own. “My Altean.”

“Yes, yours.” Lance kissed those fingers and smiled against them. “The only one for you hm?”

“Only and always.” Keith whispered, touching the collar on his neck.

Lance smiled and shimmied up, looking down at his face. One of his hands lifted to stroke Keith’s cheek. “Don’t ever leave me.”

“Never. I’ll always be beside you.” Keith captured his hand and kissed from his palm up to his finger tips.

“Good. You are my everything.” Lance shivered with those kisses. “I’ve only ever done that for you, so you’ve had my first too.”

Keith blushed darker, leaning up to kiss him, blinking at the taste of himself on Lance’s lips. “You’d lower yourself to that degree for me.”

“The only lowering I did was down your body. That’s not something you need to consider as low or beneath anyone. You are my partner, and it’s my pleasure to do that for you.” Lance nipped Keith’s lower lip.

Another shiver ran through the young Galra’s body. “It was so hot and warm… your tongue. It’s so nnmm...” Keith moaned as his hips arched up.

“And its only for you.” Lance grinned and licked at his lips. “Whenever you want it.”

“And now, Altean, what can I do for you?” Keith licked back and kissed him before he snuffled his cheek and jaw.

“Come to bed with me, my kitten.” Lance’s eyes half closed. “I want to hold you in our bed for our first night home, together as partners.”

“Are you going to carry me in there too?” Keith twirled his fingers in the back of Lance’s hair.

“Only if you want me to.” Lance chuckled and kissed him before he sat up. “But if that’s too much, I won’t.”

“I’m the one getting carried. Why would it be too much?” Keith hung from Lance’s shoulders.

Lance lifted him from the couch and grinned, supporting his full weight as though it was nothing. “So you won’t complain this time?”

“I’ll let you lay me down in our bed.” Keith continued giving those purr-puffed nuzzles to Lance’s skin.

“Oh you’ll let me hm?” Lance took slow steps through the large door that led to the bedroom after nudging it open with his foot. A large, four poster canopy bed took up the majority of the far wall. It was covered with pillows, just like the bed in the hotel, only somehow even more lavish. There were so many that several of them had rolled off the bed onto the floor. On the left side of the room, large billowing curtains covered huge arching windows and the door to the balcony. The right side had a large fireplace, even larger than the one in the sitting room. Plush carpeting and pillows in front of it. Lance stepped towards the bed and grinned. “Is this room okay for you?”

“I’ll look at it in the morning.” Keith kissed him again. “You’re all I see.”

“I suppose I can accept that.” Lance grinned and set him down on the bed, returning his kiss.

Keith allowed Lance to settle down as he cradled him between his thighs. “I can spend every night like this.”

“Then we should.” Lance pressed closer and kissed him. “I can’t say I’d be against it.”