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Finally Safe

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It's been two months and seven days since it happened. Not that Steve is counting. Or thinking about it… at all. Somehow they managed to defeat Vecna, it felt impossible, but they did it. El did it. And now she’s back and so is Hopper and the whole Byers family. The kids are all in school together and everyone is safe. Their school year is almost over and Robin is graduating with Eddie. Steve almost winces at the thought of him, not that they haven’t been seeing each other. They’ve been seeing each other a lot actually, Robin, Nancy, Jonathan, Steve, and Eddie have been hanging out a lot. The kids hang out in the basement and they either hang out at Eddie’s new trailer or Steve’s when his parents aren’t home. Sometimes they’ll all take the kids out to do cheesy childhood things when they ask because it's hard to say no to them knowing what they’ve been through. What they’ve all been through.

Steve looks over at the digital by his bed and can make out a three something glowing in red. His breathing has slowed down after reminding himself that everyone is safe, Dustin is okay, Robin is okay, Nancy is okay, he’s okay, Eddie’s okay.

Eddie.

He isn’t how Steve expected him to be, but he can’t even say what that would be. Obviously he isn’t awful if Dustin loves him so much. But he’s so caring, and sweet, and funny, and dramatic, and passionate, and cute, and he kissed Steve. The moment replaying in his head over and over again.

 

“Look Harrington, I don’t know if we’re going to make it out of this. If I’m going to make it out of this”

“No Eddie don’t say that we’re going to make it-”

“So please don’t punch me” and then Eddie was kissing him.

And before Steve could process it Eddie was running to his spot above the trailer and started playing. Steve stood there in awe and couldn’t look away. He was only knocked out of his trance when Nancy grabbed his hand and just started running.

 

But they hadn’t talked about it. Not when they almost thought they weren’t going to defeat Vecna and were really going to die, not when they did defeat Vecna and everyone was giddy and high on adrenaline, jumping up and down, screaming, laughing, and hugging. He and Eddie even hugged. Really tight, and probably too long for just bros but no one noticed. Or if they did they didn’t say anything. But neither of them brought up the kiss.
Steve’s eyes roamed his room, the night light, his dresser, the chair in the corner, and Eddie’s vest that hung on the back of the chair. Eddie never asked for it so Steve never gave it back. Just another thing they weren’t going to bring up.

***

Robin was already on her way to the car as Steve pulled up, her cap in hand and gown already almost fully falling off. She deadpanned and gave him the finger as he rolled the window down.

“My baby girl, graduating. They grow up so fast,” he said as he wiped a fake tear away from his eye.

She rolled her eyes and flopped into the passenger’s seat beside him.

“Let's just get this shit over with”

He looked at her with a smirk, “Whatever you say princess”

Her mom should probably be the one to take her to her graduation, the one to be there for it, but she practically begged him to take her. She just wanted her friends there and then after they could just dick around at Steve’s. His parents, of course, weren’t home so they were technically having a pool party, but it would probably just be the usual group with a couple others if they wanted.

“We are picking up Eddie right?”

Steve almost forgot almost driving straight past the entrance to the trailer park. He made a probably too fast turn in and drove to Eddie’s new trailer. Free of Chrissy, Vecna, and Upside Down remnants.

Eddie was already outside leaning against the trailer. His hair was down, framing his face perfectly with his cap on, holding his gown over his shoulder in one hand and a cigarette in the other. Effortlessly cool, Steve had no idea how Eddie did it. He was wearing stupidly tight black, ripped jeans and a well worn black band t-shirt that Steve was pretty sure said Black Sabbath on it, silver rings almost glowing in the sunlight. Steve felt his throat almost close up. Eddie looked gorgeous. It was then that Robin reached over Steve, honked the horn, stuck her head out of the window and shouted,

“You ready to graduate bitch!”

Eddie looked up and his smile grew into a devilish grin.

“Lets fucking DO THIS”

Steve knew Eddie would be the death of him, and he would gladly accept it.

***

Graduation went how all graduations go, but Steve was ready in the parking lot with his surprise. Nancy and Jonathan had met Steve in the parking lot with all of the little gremlins, streamers, confetti, and maybe even a bottle of champagne. Steve just leaned up against his beamer casually waiting for Robin and Eddie. Everyone else was hiding behind the car waiting for his signal. Steve spotted the graduates before they spotted him and he couldn’t take his eyes off of Eddie even if he tried. His cap was still on but his hair was pulled back with only a few face framing pieces. His full face on display and eyeliner??? When did he put that on? Steve choked on nothing when Eddie’s eyes finally met his. His initial smirk turned into the soft smile that he seemed to only use for Steve.

“Hey!! Are we doing this??” Steve heard Dustin whisper yell and shook himself out of the spell Eddie seemed to cast on him.

Once Steve knew that Robin had also noticed him he hit the side of the car two times and everyone jumped out.

A chorus of surprises filled the air along with confetti and streamers. They all ran up to Robin and Eddie, enveloping them into a big group hug. Steve stayed behind and took pictures, he wanted to remember this. The sun was setting enveloping everyone in a golden light, everyone was happy and safe, and so was he. He was starting to believe it too.

“You look like you’re ready to tear up over here Mother Harrington” Eddie gave him a small smirk. Strolling over he leaned next to Steve, arms just barely touching. He rolled his eyes and elbowed Eddie lightly, maybe leaving his arm on his instead of pulling away.

“Yeah well.. Sorry if I care”

Eddie raised his eyebrows, ‘“Jeez man, I’m just joking. It think its sweet”

All of the sudden Eddie was reaching across Steve and grabbed the film camera out of his hand, fingers brushing, sending a jolt of electricity through Steve’s whole body. He felt Eddie’s other arm wrap around his shoulders and lean his whole body against Steve’s. Eddie flipped the camera lens towards them, and whispered against his ear

“Smile Stevie”

He let out a breathy laugh and smiled, knowing his whole face must have been heating up but he smiled. Then Eddie stepped away from him, leaving him cold even though it was stupidly hot.

“Mr. Harrington! Mr. Harrington! Strike a pose for the camera!”

He rolled his eyes but couldn’t wipe the fond smile growing on his face even if he tried.

“Please, please, Mr. Harrington is my father” and he tried his best model pose only for Robin to run up behind him and jump on his back.

“Whooooooo! Let's party!” She shouted while Steve did his best to regain his balance laughing through the whole time.

***

Despite all of his protesting Steve barely had any say in the music that was blasting through his house. Robin, Nancy, and even Eddie had made multiple mixtapes to get them through the night. Some of it he loved and others he could tolerate, or pretend to hate but secretly really love because Eddie loved it. But no one had to know about that, right?
He was walking into the kitchen when he heard the beginning of Let’s Dance hit his ears. He turned around, beer be damned, this was one of his favorites.

“Okay it is officially time! To! Party!”

Robin was already running over to him and as they locked eyes they were screaming the lyrics louder than the stereo.

If you say run
I’ll run with you
And if you say hide
We’ll hide

They both wrapped their arms around each other and when Steve opened his eyes again Eddie was staring at him. He had this small, fond smile on his face, his doe-like eyes crinkled around the sides, and it looked like he might have even been blushing. As the next lines of the song started Steve decided, fuck it.

Because my love for you
Would break my heart in two
If you should fall into my arms
And tremble like a flower

He sang to Eddie. He looked him in the eyes and decided to put it all out there. If Eddie really didn’t like him then this can just become another thing on the list of things that they don’t talk about. But hopefully Steve was wrong, and this could be the beginning.
He and Robin danced through the whole song, getting the rest of the kids to join in. Robin spun Max around and he drew Dustin in with the classic fishing hook move. Even El was laughing at Mike and Will for not knowing how to dance with their lanky bodies. It felt so good, he felt happy, and his kids felt happy. Maybe this wasn’t a conventional post graduation party, but they weren’t conventional anymore. And he liked it that way.

***

By one am the kids had finally crashed. Instead of spreading out through the available rooms in the house they set up an air mattress next to the bed in the guest bedroom. There was a tv, a night light, and a bathroom connected. None of the older ones could judge, and honestly they didn’t care. It meant less chaos, and less to clean up later.
Robin and Nancy were both lying on floats, sunglasses on even though it was dark. Jonathan had passed out on a lounge chair about half an hour ago. Steve and Eddie were both sitting on the edge of the pool with their feet in, passing a joint back and forth. Eddie had let his hair down and it was full and curly and Steve wanted to run his hands through it. He wasn’t even cold but grabbed Eddie’s old flannel that he had thrown on the ground at some point through the night just because. He got up and looked down at Eddie, who furrowed his eyebrows at him.

“What are you doing Harrington?”

He took a deep breath, now or never Steve. If he backs out or thinks you’re weird you can just blame it on the high.

“Can I braid your hair?”

Before Eddie could respond Nancy chimed in, “He’s actually really good at it. He used to do my little sister’s all the time, and if it wasn’t perfect for Holly he would have to do it again. Lots of practice”

Steve looked over at Nancy, shocked. He had been pretty obvious about his feelings though, and she’s quite observant. She moved her sunglasses down just enough to wink at Steve then pulled them back up. He looked back down at Eddie, whose cheeks had gone pink, probably matching Steve’s, along with all of the freckles that had developed over the past few weeks. He wanted to kiss all of them. Eddie just nodded.

“Yeah sure man, g-go for it I guess”

Steve plopped down behind Eddie, laying his legs next to Eddie’s sides. He shook out his hands and then just went for it. He ran his hands through Eddie’s hair. He couldn’t hold back a small gasp as Eddie sighed and leaned into Steve’s touch. It was so soft, even after all of that swimming. It was the best hair he’s ever felt. Eddie should have had the nickname ‘the hair’ because Steve’s was nothing compared to this. He ran his hands through it again, and again, and again. This went on for probably less than a minute, but Steve could have done it forever.

“You gonna just give me a comb through or are you actually going to braid my hair Harrington?” and Steve could just hear the smirk in his voice.

Steve cleared his throat and tugged lightly on a strand. Now it was Eddie’s turn to gasp quietly. He leaned in, lips brushing Eddie’s ears as he whispered

“No problem Eds” and got to work.

There was music playing faintly in the background, he’s pretty sure that it’s Black Sabbath since Eddie is tapping along with his fingers. Whatever it is, it doesn't sound bad. As the song went on Eddie started to move his head along to the song. Without even thinking Steve whispered,

“Hold still sweetheart” and keeps braiding for about four seconds.

Then he freezes, and so does Eddie. Steve is only halfway done but he can’t will himself to keep going. He just called Eddie sweetheart. He didn’t even know that was one of things he wanted to call Eddie, and he spent a lot of time thinking about that.

“I’ll um, I’ll be right back” and he ran into the kitchen before he could hear Eddie respond.

***

He was freaking out. He kept pacing around the kitchen, his head in his hands.

“Shit shit shit shit shit”

Steve was too busy freaking out that he didn’t hear the door open and close behind him, or the footsteps walking into the kitchen.

“Steve”
He looked at Eddie through his fingers. God even with an unfinished braid he looked beautiful. When Steve met Eddie’s big, brown eyes he was greeted with nothing but kindness. Eddie wasn’t mad.

Eddie cautiously stepped towards Steve. He reached up and took Steve’s hands away from his face. He felt like he was about to cry. Eddie let one of Steve’s hands drop, and then slid his fingers between the other. Without breaking eye contact he slowly moved Steve’s hand toward his lips, slow enough that if Steve really wanted to back out he could have. Instead he nodded, and Eddie brought his hand to his lips. He pressed a gentle kiss to Steve’s hand, who let out a breath he didn’t know he was holding.

“Are you sure you want to do this? Because I don’t know if I could handle it if tomorrow you regretted it and refused to talk to me anymore.”

Eddie looked down, anywhere but Steve’s face. He used his free hand to gently move Eddie’s chin, forcing him to look at Steve.

“God Eddie it's like you don’t even know what you do to me”

And then Eddie’s arms were around Steve’s neck and his lips were on his. They melted against each other, Steve wrapping his arms around Eddie’s bare waist and Eddie’s hands moving to Steve’s chest. Steve turned Eddie and pressed him against the counter making him gasp and Steve deepened the kiss. Hands roaming, he swiped his tongue across Eddie’s bottom lip and felt the moan Eddie let out through his whole body. Steve eventually settled his hands in Eddie’s hair as Eddie laid his on Steve’s chest, making small circles with his thumb against Steve’s sternum. Breathless, they rested their foreheads against each other’s and Steve let out a light laugh.

“Why didn’t we do that sooner?”

“Because I was so scared that you hated me for doing it in the fucking upside down of all places. But then you didn’t fully shun me, which honestly was all I thought I was going to get. So I didn’t want to even push my luck. You never brought it up and I assumed that I read the vibe wrong and that you were straight or at least not into me because honestly who would b-”

Before he could keep going Steve cut him off with another kiss. He wanted to show Eddie just how much he wanted him, maybe even loved him.

“I want you Eddie. I haven’t stopped thinking about when you kissed me in the upside down, you weren’t reading it wrong Eddie. I like you. I like you so much.”

Eddie pulled him into a bone crushing hug, and Steve held back just as tight. He never wanted to let go.

***

Eddie had lifted him onto the kitchen counter and was standing between his legs, fingers tracing his arms. Steve was twirling Eddie’s curls between his fingers. He looked perfect in the dim lighting, eyes closed with a small smile on his face. Their faces were so close Steve thought he could count every single freckle on Eddie’s face. He wanted to kiss one, so he did.

“I like being the one sitting on the counter”

“Hmm?”

“Like, whenever I’ve been with girls they were the ones who got lifted onto the counter. Now I get why they like it so much.”

He felt like it was a valid thought, and he wanted to share it. He closed his eyes and leaned into Eddie’s touch, a soft smile appearing on his face. Eddie took a deep breath,

“Well then hopefully you’ll like this too.”

Steve was being lifted bridal style by Eddie, who was carrying him out of the kitchen like he weighed nothing. He couldn’t stop the yelp that escaped his mouth and had to wrap his arms around Eddie’s neck.

“Okay first of all I had no idea you were this strong and second of all what are you doing?”

Steve was attempting to stay quiet but it came out more as a whisper yell. Eddie just smirked at him.

“I’m taking you to bed, obviously” and then winked at him.

Steve felt his cheeks heat up and jaw drop, speechless all the way to his bedroom door. Eddie then effortlessly spun around and leaned against the door to open it, pushed it shut with his foot, put Steve down, and crowded Steve against the door placing his hands on each side of his head smirking.

“I can’t believe I was able to leave The Steve Harrington speechless.” Steve rolled his eyes as he leaned his head against the door

“Shut up”

“Make me” and Steve didn’t need to be told twice.

He took Eddie’s face in both of his hands and pulled him into a kiss. It started as soft and sweet, but then Eddie bit his lip and Steve surged forward. Hands roaming until Steve’s landed just at Eddie’s waist. He hooked his arms under Eddie’s thighs and lifted him up. Steve felt Eddie’s hands pull on his hair just enough for him to let out a soft moan.

He walked blindly towards his bed where he leaned forward and dropped Eddie on his back. They were both panting, and Steve let himself just look. He looked Eddie up and down, there were more tattoos than he could count. The braid Steve tried to do was fully undone, his hair laid out against the pillow like a halo. There was a tattoo of a bat on his right rib cage that Steve was ironically already obsessed with. And then he realized he had made Eddie hard. His stomach erupted in butterflies and a blush was surely creeping its way down his chest but he couldn’t bother to be embarrassed. He knew that Eddie had done the same thing to him. Eddie was looking up at him, half lidded and pupils blown out leaving his eyes almost completely black.. It was the most beautiful thing he’s ever seen. Before Steve could say it Eddie spoke,

“Steve you are so beautiful” He threw off Eddie’s flannel and crawled on top of him.

“You’re not so bad yourself Munson”

Their legs were tangled together and Eddie moved his hips against Steve’s in just the right way. His eyes fluttered shut and he threw his head back, lips parting. He felt Eddie’s thumb brush over his bottom lip. While making eye contact he took Eddie’s thumb into his mouth and sucked.

“Fuck Steve” Eddie’s voice came out low and raspy.

Steve lightly bit his thumb before releasing it from his mouth. Eddie flipped him onto his back and sat up straddling him. He could feel Eddie against him, and when he leaned forward just enough to lay his hands on Steve’s chest the friction was almost too much to handle.

"Eddie" he moaned, arching his back and gripping Eddie’s thighs so hard he might leave bruises.
The hands on his chest traveled up past his neck, one tangled in his hair and the other cupping his cheek. Steve doesn’t think he’s ever felt more cared for in his life.

“Steve” Eddie was looking into his eyes but it felt like he was looking deeper, into his soul.

“Yeah?”

“Let me take care of you. Is that okay baby?” Steve nodded, speechless from being called baby.

Then Eddie’s lips were on his. He felt him slowly travel to his neck and Steve angled his head back to give him more surface to mark his neck. He grinded upwards and felt Eddie moan against his neck, the vibrations rocking him to his core.

Steve tangled his hands through Eddie’s hair as he felt the other man travel down his body. He pressed a gentle kiss at Steve’s hip looking up for permission.

He let out a pained, “Please”

Eddie hooked his fingers around the swim trunks and slowly pulled down revealing Steve. He threw them across the room and made eye contact with Steve as he swiped tongue along his length before taking him into his mouth. Steve tightened his grip on Eddie’s hair releasing moans and profanities while being sucked off.

“Eds, I- I’m close” and if he was being honest? So was Eddie.

Steve looked down one last time at Eddie and that was it. He came into Eddie’s mouth, who swallowed and worked Steve through his orgasm. Steve pulled him back up to his mouth into a bruising kiss.

“Eddie let me-”

“Honestly I think if you just touch me I’ll come” he laughed lightly.

Steve moved his hands down Eddie’s body, waited for Eddie to nod, then pulled down his trunks. This was the first time Steve was seeing another man like this, but he couldn’t feel scared even if he tried. Eddie made him feel so comfortable and safe.

“You’re so gorgeous” he whispered into Eddie’s ear as he began to stroke him.
It didn’t take long before Eddie was moaning Steve’s name, spilling over into his hand and onto his stomach. Before Eddie could grab a towel he watched Steve bring his fingers to his mouth and lick.

“God you taste so good” Steve said, laying on his side next to Eddie, who turned to face him. Eddie grabbed a t-shirt that was crumpled on the floor and started to wipe off Steve’s stomach.

“I know we should clean up but I really don’t want to move away from you right now.”

“Then don’t.”

Steve grabbed the shirt and finished wiping himself off before tossing it into the corner. He laid his head down on Eddie’s chest and began slowly tracing his fingers up and down his forearm. Eddie pressed a kiss to the top of his head and whispered,

“Goodnight Stevie”

“Goodnight Eds”

***