In their surface, see two young savage things, barely worth remembering.
Carlos rested on the bed, flushed and breathless, fingers tracing the dark, winding tatoos that crept up his husband's back and caged his ribs. Moonlight filtered through the blinds, casting Cecil in soft evening light. He hovered over him, one hand propping himself up and the other playing with Carlos's hair as he kissed him softly.
A long strand of white-blond hair drifted from the ponytail where Cecil had bound it back, flowing down and tickling Carlos's cheek. He kissed him once more and then smiled, drawing back to free his locks completely. His hair had grown since their wedding. Before, it was always in that slightly jagged undercut which never seemed to obey the laws of gravity, but now it just barely brushed the tops of his shoulders and Carlos adored it.
Cecil leaned down to meet Carlos's lips again, running a thumb across his cheek. He knew his husband didn't like being without contact for too long.
Slowly and gently, he pressed a careful kiss to the corner of Carlos's mouth, then dropped lower, breath ghosting across his jaw, his neck. Carlos sighed, winding a hand into Cecil's hair. He was in heaven, it felt so good.
All of a sudden, his chest tightened. It was too good, to gentle.
He couldn't have it, it wasn't meant for him.
His best friend's house, eight years before his arrival in Nightvale. Carlos's hair was tangled, but brushed back in a hasty attempt to look put-together, to put himself back together.
A bruise marred the skin of his neck. He ached all over, but in a detached way, as if he was floating outside his own body, and someone else was telling him what happened, what he felt. It didn't feel his.
Carlos's knuckles were white around the mug of tea he had been handed, and he hadn't taken a sip. How long had it been since he drank anything? The fabric of the couch was rough against his arms, but he barely took notice. He was vaguely aware that it hurt, but not any more than the rest of him.
He finally took a sip of tea. It was cold, weak.
The teabag must have been old, Carlos thought. It was just like him, worrying over a teabag after what had just happened.
"You disgust me." The words had been said in a joking manner, but their meaning was not lost. His friend hated him, he thought him revolting.
It wasn't his fault, he didn't know how they made Carlos feel like his bones were being broken one by one. It wasn't his fault, right?
You're lying to him.
You need to tell him what happened.
Cecil had noticed Carlos fall silent and drew back, something like worry in those beautiful eyes. It was strange to see it on Cecil's face, strange to see anything there but fondness and enthusiasm. "Carlos?" It was not a shaky sigh anymore, it was strong, steady.
Carlos's eyes were squeezed shut, trying to push the memories away. He forced a smile onto his face. "Yeah. Yeah, I'm okay."
He hadn't noticed that he had been crying until Cecil pushed a curl off of his damp cheek. "Carlos, love, please talk to me-"
Cecil isn't him, just let it happen.
He loves you, just give him what he wants.
Carlos tried to say Cecil's name, but it stuck in his throat, morphing into a shaky sob in the cool night air. He silently cursed himself for sounding so weak, but Cecil climbed off of him immediately and pulled Carlos close, rubbing soothing circles on his back through the cotton tee shirt he wore. "Oh love, I'm so sorry."
"I," Carlos tried. His voice shook and his mouth didn't quite work the way he wanted to, but Cecil understood. He kissed the top of Carlos's head and ran a hand through his hair, straightening it out and gently working his way through the tangles. It was something that Carlos always loved, and he melted into his husband's touch.
"Shh, you're alright," Cecil said, holding Carlos close and brushing locks of hair behind his ears.
Carlos sighed. "I'm sorry, Ceece," he said.
Cecil tipped Carlos's head up and looked at him, smiling gently. There was so much love in that expression, so much that he didn't deserve. "You needed to stop, don't blame yourself. You have nothing to be sorry for." Carlos blinked up at him and nodded, tears pricking his eyes. "Do you need water? Something to eat?"
Carlos nodded, and Cecil pressed a kiss to his cheek before pulling out of his embrace and swinging his legs over the edge of the bed. Carlos sat up and rested his elbows on his knees. His husband slipped out of the bedroom and a few minutes later, returned with a glass of water and a couple crackers, wheat and wheat byproduct-free, of course.
Cecil sat next to him and as soon as his churning stomach was settled, he tucked Carlos into his chest and stroked his hair, murmuring soothing words in that soothing radio voice of his. He could be reciting the phonebook for all Carlos cared, but there was nothing he loved more than to hear that voice. "I don't deserve you, Cecil."
"But you do. My lovely Carlos, you deserve so much more than me."
And when the sun comes, try not to hate the light. Someday we'll try to walk upright.