Claude doesn’t have a lot of regrets in life.
He has an incredible, gorgeous wife, the best kid in the world, and he’s the captain of a team of wonderful assholes who would severely maim Sidney Crosby given the slightest opportunity - there isn’t exactly room in his life for a lot of regrets.
Now, though, sitting at his dining room table at ten in the morning with his head buried in his hands, he has a few.
“Okay,” he says, the words muffled by his palms. “Walk me through this one more time. Use small words.”
“Alright,” TK says cheerfully, snagging another one of the fancy little mini-pancake-and-fruit stacks that Ryanne made especially for Claude. Claude scowls and pulls the plate away, tucking it out of reach of TK’s thieving hands. “Aw man, come on. Those things are fucking delicious.”
“Words, Travis.” Claude demands.
“Fine, fine. Ok, so, me and Patty are together.”
“You sure are.”
“And we have sex together.”
“Unfortunately, I know that very well.”
“And we want to try something new.”
“But it’s something we don’t want to do alone, ‘cause we’re worried about something going wrong and we want someone there to look after us.”
“So I’m asking you! And Patty’s asking Kev.”
“Nope, you lost me.”
“G, come on,” Travis whines, slumping down over the kitchen island, and discretely reaching towards the pancake plate as he does. Claude moves it further away again.
“Why are you asking me,” he asks, because he just…doesn’t get it. “What is it about me that says ‘yes, you should come and talk to me about being involved in your sex life’, exactly?”
“Well, you always say that we can ask you for help with anything,” TK says, shrugging.
“I meant calling me for a ride home when you’re drunk, or bailing you out of jail if you get arrested for being a public nuisance, not this.” Claude says, waving his hand in TK’s general direction.
“Does that mean you won’t do it?” TK asks, looking at Claude with what he probably thinks are sad-looking puppy-dog eyes, but actually make him look like he’s about to sneeze. “Cause, like, I don’t want to pressure you or anything. Consent is important and shit, Patty and I read all about it.”
Claude sighs and leans back in his chair, looking up at the roof and contemplating, just for a minute, moving his whole family out to the backwoods of Ontario and becoming a reclusive lumberjack and never having to deal with anything more important than choosing what cereal to have for breakfast ever again.
“Stay here,” he finally announces, his chair screeching against the floor as he stands up. “There’s seven stacks on that plate, and if there’s not seven when I get back, I’m going to bag skate you on Friday until you puke, got it?”
“Got it,” TK says sulkily, slumping down in his seat and crossing his arms.
Claude rolls his eyes and marches out of the kitchen, making his way through the house until he finds Ryanne, lounging in the sunshine on one of their giant couches. He takes a few seconds to admire the view, because he loves her so fucking much and he’ll never, ever be sick of seeing her.
Eventually, though, he has to move, because he knows if he takes too long TK’s miserable self-restraint is going to fail and he’s going to eat Claude’s pancakes, the little rat bastard. He shuffles into the room and gently worms his way into her space, nudging her book out of the way until he’s laying down over her legs, face buried in her stomach.
“What’s up?” she asks, and he feels the bottom of the book come to rest on the back of his head, and the soft thwip of a page being turned.
“TK and Patty want me to scene with them.” he mumbles into her belly button, and scowls as he feels it start to jump with contained laughter. “It’s not funny!”
“Sorry, Claude,” she giggles, and there’s a soft thump as she puts her book on the side table. “I just think it’s sweet!”
“Why me,” he moans, propping his head up so he can look at her.
“Aw, hun,” Ryanne coos, putting her book down and running her hands through his hair. “They trust you. They know you’ll look after them, that’s all. Do you have any objections to doing it?”
“…I guess not,” he admits after a minute, grumpy and reluctant.
“Alright then. As long as everybody is consenting and being safe, I don’t have any problems with it. You have to come home and tell me all about it though, it sounds exciting.” She pauses for a minute and then smirks at him, and he can feel himself start to stir in response, because he knows that smirk. “Maybe I could even get out the strap and you could tell me about it while we have a little bit of fun ourselves, huh?”
“Yeah?” he asks eagerly, squirming upwards until they’re face to face, digging his hands into her waist. “With the red one?”
“Oh baby, we can even use the green one, if you want.” she says, laughing into the kisses he peppers onto her face. “Go on, you’d better get back to him before he gets himself into trouble.”
“I love you,” Claude says, kissing her one last time and hauling himself off the couch. “Best fuckin’ wife ever.”
“I know,” she calls after him, smug and confident, just like she should be.
He’s not surprised to find TK making a mess when he gets back to the kitchen, but he is disappointed.
“You better pick all those up and eat them before you go,” he growls, as TK frantically tries to gather the grapes currently scattering themselves over the counter. “I was gone for like two minutes Travis, what the fuck.”
“It’s fine! They’re fine.” TK says, stuffing the grapes into his pockets. “I’ll eat them I promise! I was just, like, grape bowling. I got bored. Did you decide?”
Claude blows out a breath and looks to the roof, begging whatever entities exist out there to give him patience. It’s hard to be an NHL captain when you’re in prison for murder.
“Yes, I will scene with you and Patty and Kev. I will not be having sex with either of you, and I’ll be telling Ryanne about it. Fair?”
“Totally fair!” TK exclaims, nodding his head frantically. “I’ve got, like forms and shit, Patty printed them out. Do you wanna do them now? Or we can wait for another time, but Patty kind of wants them back ASAP.”
“No, we can do them now,” Claude says, sitting back down at the counter. He pauses for a second, and then does a quick mental recap of the bench and its contents. “Travis, why are there only six stacks on this plate?”
“Uh, I…don’t know? I think maybe the dog took one?”
“You’re gonna die on Friday, and I’m going to laugh at you while you do.”