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     “Troy, how would you describe me?”

The response is just what Lionel expects , delayed and disoriented as Troy opens the bathroom door to expose a cloud of marijuana smoke long before his own figure materializes behind it. He walks out seconds later, exhaling another puff of smoke into Troy’s room for good measure, exaggerated as he always is as he swaggers over to Lionel’s bed. He drops his pipe onto the bedside table and flops down beside Lionel, the mattress jolting in time with the butterflies inside Lionel’s stomach. Troy leans over to look at Lionel’s assignment on his computer screen; he’s shirtless, his dampened skin glistening with water droplets and steam, and Lionel can practically feel the warmth radiating off him. He smells like clean soap and shaving cream, minty and fresh, and it takes Lionel a second to remember what planet he’s on, much less what he had been asking. 

Troy catches how flustered he is, of course. He alway seems to. He fights back a smile at it, the edges of his mouth curling up ever so slightly, and Lionel is rendered unable to tear his eyes away from his boyfriend. Yes, Troy is his boyfriend now and while Lionel has seen far more than just his naked chest, he’s only human. And he’s incredibly, incredibly gay and in love with him, his roommate, his best friend. Even just the brush of his hand against his arm makes his entire body come to life, anticipatory and yearning. 

     “How would I describe you?” Troy repeats, then pretends to think, his hand resting mock-thoughtfully on his chin. “Hmm…”

He settles back onto Lionel’s sheets, the imprint of his wet body sure to leave a stain. Lionel nudges him with his sweatpant covered knee but can’t bring himself to mind at all.

     “Funny, dependable, sweet, smart, attractive, sexy, thoughtful,” Troy rattles off as Lionel flushes and dutifully jots down his answers. 

     “Book-y?” Troy tries once he’s gone through the easy words and his suggestions hit a lull. “You know, you really like books. You’re always learning things. I’d say ‘smart,’ but I already said that.”

       “The word would be bookish,” Lionel corrects him, “but I guess it’s accurate.” His fingers scatter across his keyboard as he works to complete his assignment, some boring introductory busy work for his new psychology course. It’s due at midnight on a Saturday night, something that Lionel thinks should be outlawed considering that there are so many things that Lionel would rather be doing including the boy sitting beside him.

     “See,” Troy says, and Lionel notices his pleased smirk out of his peripheral vision. “You know things like that. Definitions and stuff. You’re super smart.”

Lionel lifts his head up, blushing, and just when he goes in to kiss Troy, his phone rings. 

     “Pizza’s here,” Troy tells him seconds after answering it and right before he presses a lingering kiss to his lips, the kind of kiss that makes Lionel’s entire being feel like it’s being shaken like a bottle of carbonated soda, fizzy and sporadic— and he means that in the best way possible. He’s giddy, always feeling good around Troy.

     “You ordered a pizza?!” Lionel asks, his face lighting up like a Christmas tree at the prospect of food, and Troy chuckles. He darts to his feet and throws on Lionel’s flannel, ignoring the fact that it’s too small for him, and he leaves it unbuttoned with no shirt on underneath. That’s a sight that’s not going to leave Lionel for quite some time. 

     “Of course I did, I knew you had a lot of work to do,” he says like it’s nothing. He grabs his keys and heads for the door, then stops to shrug out of his slippers and put on his sturdier shoes. It’s a snowstorm outside, has been all weekend, and Lionel can’t say he’s too upset about it since it means he gets to spend all day inside with Troy. 

     “Don’t forget to put down ‘adorable,’” Troy says just before he leaves, pointing at Lionel’s growing bulleted list on his screen before pressing another kiss, quicker this time, to Lionel’s cheek.