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A Night In

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“Are you sure you don’t want any help?”

Kay claps her hands together, sending out a small cloud of flour. “Totally handled.” She grins and puts her hands on her hips, adding more white prints to the collection across the bottom of her tee and the sides of her sweatpants. “I told you, I’m gonna make you dessert all on my own, and I’m sticking to that!”

“Okay.” Nodding, Maya draws her legs up and curls around them, a faint smile on her face as she rests her head against her knees. She watches her girlfriend dart around the table, picking up ingredients and measuring spoons from where she’d haphazardly strewn them earlier. The almost-rhythm of movement and the faint tap of rain against the window next to her, combined with the warming kitchen, lull her into a comfortable haze.

Until Kay pokes her head up from under the table (and Maya can’t quite remember her moving to that spot, but whatever). “Hey, where do you keep your whisk? I thought I had it but…”

She points to the drawer on the far left.

A good stretch of time passes like that, Kay finishing a couple tasks and then skidding around collecting things as Maya points them out to her.

“Did you actually get any of the things you needed earlier or are you making this up on the spot?”

Kay waves a spoon dripping with batter. “Secret Faraday recipe! It’s all up here!” She taps at the side of her head, narrowly avoiding getting food in her hair again.

When Kay’s done, she slides the pan into the oven, dropping her mitts onto the counter. Making her way over to Maya, she stands on her toes to press a kiss to her cheek.

Laughing, Maya slides off the counter as Kay circles her arms around her. She throws her arms over her shoulders, humming under her breath. “You smell like cinnamon,” she mumbles.

“Might have used a bit of that.” After a moment, Kay slides one hand to grasp her hand and the other to the back of her shoulders. To some unknown tune, she begins leading her around the tiny kitchen, the steady 3/4 rhythm of their feet across the floor the only thing to mark the passage of time for them.

Until her foot slides into a puddle and Maya squeaks. Ignoring Kay’s grin, she leans her weight on her exaggeratedly to take off the now-wet sock. She leaves the room just long enough to change into another pair and comes back to find Kay squatting in front of the oven door, staring in through the window.

“I think it’s going to need a bit longer than I set it for.” Shrugging, but without a real hint of embarrassment, she gets up and leans against the oven.

Maya slides next to her, nuzzling her head into her shoulder. “Hi.”

“Hi.” Kay puts an arm around her waist.

“Mmm. …We should probably clean this up.” She gestures at the table.

They work in tandem, weaving around each other and only occasionally bumping into the other. Once the food is away, Kay starts dishes.

On the last load of bringing things over to the sink, Maya hugs her from behind, resting the side of her head against Kay’s back. She moves side to side with her as she grabs dishes and puts them to the other side to dry, loosening and tightening her grip as needed but refusing to let go. When that’s done, she pulls her back and sits her down at one of the chairs at the table, then immediately plops down in her lap.

Kay holds her, idly tracing the few scars visible on Maya’s bare lower legs until Maya stops playing with her hair and stands up again. Kay makes a pleading noise, stretching her arms out.

A laugh. “I’m just going to put things away.” Before stepping completely out of reach, Maya takes one of Kay’s hands and kisses it. “Watch me, okay?”

Adjusting her position so she’s sitting backwards in the chair with her head propped up in her hands, Kay stares dreamily at her. “Oh, always.”

“I meant so you know where everything goes.” Maya sticks her tongue out at her. “You’ve been here enough, you ought to know where things are in your girlfriend’s kitchen.”

“Well maybe if my girlfriend didn’t insist on making all of her food that she doesn’t order out, I’d get some practice more often.”

Maya swats her on the head with the towel the next time she passes her, then winks.

The alarm on the oven goes off then, Kay scrambling to check on it. She gets it out and cooling on the counter, and manages to locate the teapot on her second try. Holding it up triumphantly, she sets it up.

Another stretch of quiet, the two working a couple feet from the other, shooting glances and smiles and exaggerated gestures until the tea is done and Maya’s gotten two slices of the bread onto plates and they make their way into the living room.

Maya throws herself into Kay’s arms the moment everything has been set on the coffee table and the risk of spilling hot drink on themselves has passed. The force of it has them falling back onto the couch, laughing as Kay tangles her hands in Maya’s loose hair and Maya kisses her jawline half a dozen times or so. Slowly, they shift to sit more comfortably, Maya pulling a blanket over them as they cuddle together to enjoy their food, and the warmth and comfort of this space of theirs.