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New York State of Mind

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David exited the bathroom fresh faced and pajama-ed. He made his way to his side of the bed and watched as Patrick put his bookmark in between pages, closed the book, and turned out the light. As Patrick slipped beneath the covers, David could hear and feel Patrick scoot down to find a resting place next to him. While his body stilled, David was fairly certain that Patrick’s mind still churned. David’s fingers started walking their way to the right in search of his fiancé’s but when fingers touched fingers, Patrick jumped a little. David’s blood turned to ice for a split second, thinking Patrick would pull away. When Patrick settled again and grasped David back, David let out a breath he didn’t realize he had been holding.


They both began at the same time and fell silent at the same time. A moment passed before David felt Patrick squeeze his hand in silent permission to speak first.

“I didn’t mean for it to happen like that.” David grimaced a bit at the especially high pitch his voice landed on. “I realize I should have talked to you about it first…it’s just Alexis was looking for apartments for us before I even realized what was happening…and you know goading she can be.” The last sentence came out in a rush, words tumbling over each other, and then faded out as he realized he didn’t really have a way to end the sentence.

David felt Patrick squeeze his hand again as he took a deep breath to begin speaking: “I know, David.” They both laid there in heavy silence for a few more moments before Patrick spoke up again. “It would benefit the business if we’re expanding…and I know it would be hard for you to be away from your family.” David opened his mouth to protest but snapped it shut when Patrick leveled him with a look that said “cut the bullshit.”

“It’s just….” Patrick let out a sigh as he looked for the right words. He shifted his body so he was lying on his side facing David. “I just…God, David. I hope you know I’d do anything if I thought it meant making you happy.” David’s eyes welled up, and he nodded as Patrick continued. “I just…I guess…I thought we’d be making decisions like this together.”

David’s voice came out as a whisper. “I know. Me too.” Patrick reached out and curled his fingers into the hairs at the nape of David’s neck. “We're ok,” he whispered. David nodded again as he attempted to clear his throat around the lump that had taken up residency. He turned his head to face Patrick as Patrick pulled him in for a chaste but tender kiss. As they broke apart, Patrick, sweet Patrick who proved time after time that he would go to the ends of the earth for David, asked, “What do you need?”

David knew instantly what he needed, but hesitated before speaking. “I think…I just…I want….can I hold you for a little bit?” Patrick’s mouth turned down into the cheeky upside down smile that charmed David so much. “You want to hold me? You love being little spoon.” “Not tonight,” David declared and tapped Patrick’s hip indicating he should turn over. The look of love and tenderness that Patrick gave David threatened to tear down the thinly built composure that David had cobbled together for this conversation. Patrick seemed to sense this and leaned in to give David another quick kiss before complying.

As Patrick settled on his other side, David scooted up behind him and wrapped his arms tightly around his fiancé. David could feel the moment that Patrick began to melt into him, his muscles relaxing, his breathing slowing and deepening. David wound his hand up to plaster it against Patrick’s sternum, feeling the lub-dub of his heart beneath it. “I love you so much, Patrick,” David whispered as he placed a light kiss to the sensitive skin behind Patrick’s ear. “I love you too, David. Goodnight.”