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“This still feels like a bad idea.”

It’s maybe the fourth time in two days they’ve had this conversation, and it probably won’t be the last. Eliot’s still got another 19 hours to get through before this stupid appointment forces him out of the safe and controlled environment of the condo and out into the world where other people can breathe on him.

“This argument in general would be more convincing,” Quentin calls out from somewhere in the direction of the dining room table masquerading as a workbench, “if you weren’t literally laying there with your eyes closed because you have a headache.”

Eliot— is lying here with his eyes closed because of a headache, but somehow it seems unsportsmanlike of Quentin to actually point that out. He would protest, except his head hurts too much. “I can handle headaches,” Eliot calls back, which is what they keep coming to. The potential risk versus benefit, and what Eliot considers worth the price of his own pain.

Quentin’s health, his own, their future together, all of that— worth the price of a few headaches. Pinching the bridge of his nose, he listens to the sound of Quentin getting up, the pad of his socked feet as he moves around the condo. Reaching up to pinch about the bridge of his nose, Eliot willsl the dull throb across his forehead to let up. It’s not even really like the headaches are new, he’s always gotten headaches trying to read for long periods of time. It’s just not something he tried to do often, and could usually turn to some kind of chemical assistance to endure. Longingly, he thinks of the days when he had access to Josh’s weed— yet another thing lost to pandemic, locked away behind the sealed door of the Fillory clock.

He’s barely paying attention, so it comes as something of a surprise when Quentin fully climbs up into his lap, weight settling onto his thighs. A surprise, but a nice one, the familiar warm compact little weight of him as he settles down, knees sinking into the couch on either side of Eliot’s hips. “Oh hello,” Eliot mutters, peeking one eye open to look up at Quentin, his earnest eyes and cute nose, hair sliding loose from its messy bun.

“Hi,” Quentin greets, a wry little quirk to his mouth. Eliot watches Quentin watch him, watches as Quentin reaches up to smooth both thumbs along the line Eliot’s beard, up his sideburns, to scratch deep into the curls, fingernails gentle and firm along his scalp. Sighing, Eliot lets his eyes fall closed, head resting back along the edge of the couch while Quentin’s clever hands draw shivers up his spine. Conversationally, he says, “There’s a lot of problems we have that don’t have easy solutions.”

Eliot just grunts in reply, which is maybe a little embarrassing since he generally likes to pretend he’s elevated himself above the monosyllabic communication practices of his immediate gene pool. But Quentin’s fingers are stiffening gently through his curls, and he hasn't bothered with any product today beyond leave-in conditioner, so there’s no tug or pull. Just a nice, steady touch, to go with his lapful of warm body. Almost without thinking, he reaches out to slide his own hands up the outside of Quentin’s thighs, petting him back.

“We can’t do much about most of your Monster pain, beyond managing it,” Quentin continues, gentle, repeating the line of reasoning they’ve gone over time and again. The first time he’d sounded like he’d been trying to convince himself as much as Eliot, but there’s more conviction in it now. “We can’t do anything about the pandemic. We can’t do more than what we’re doing about either of our mental health. But we can, maybe,” he pauses here, hand sliding forward to rub his thumbs gently against Eliot’s temples, “Do something about your headaches. As previously stated, that’s worth a little bit of mediated risk, I think.”

“I’ve gone almost 30 years without glasses, it just seems like I can wait another six months, you know?”

“I hate to be the one to tell you this, El, but this shit gets worse as you get old. You probably need glasses more now than you did a year ago. And I’m not convinced you didn’t need them then.”

Eliot groans, rolling his head over until he’s nuzzling at Quentin’s wrist. Nice, solid, furry wrists. He’s very fond of them. “I don’t want to get old.”

“Yeah you do,” Quentin says, gently, but— with weight. Eliot remembers, in the way he mostly manages not to think about, how impossible that had seemed, sitting on the floor of the throne room with peach juice running down his chin. Before all the other fucking impossible things— the fundamental truth. He’d lived long enough to get old.


“You’re right, I do,” Eliot admits, cracking his eyes open to look up into Quentin’s face. “So I probably shouldn’t get the plague by going to the optometrist right now.”

Quentin’s mouth twists into an unhappy frown, and for a moment Eliot feels bad— fuck, he’s only making this harder on both of them, Quentin with his nervous worry, his unbelievably big heart. “I also don’t super want either of us going out, but— I got out on pick-ups and drops a couple of times a week, and that’s not nearly as important. Plus the new wards coming in through the hedge network are 86% effective for small periods of time,” Quentin recites at him, more lists they’ve treaded time and time again. Reaching up to run his palm back off Eliot’s forehead, Quentin gives a thoughtful little hum. “And everyone will be wearing masks on top of that. You’ll be okay, and then you can watch TV and fuck around online and read without getting headaches. Which is pretty much all we can do right now, so. I don’t love it either, but I maintain that it’s worth the risk.”

Eliot sighs, letting his eyes slide shut again, sinking into the feeling of Quentin’s steady, solid hands. “If I die, I’m going to haunt you.”

“That goes without saying,” Quentin agrees, then he’s shifting, his weight settling until he’s laying on top of Eliot, warm and heavier than he looks, head tucked in against the ball of Eliot’s shoulder. The breath of a heavy sigh tickles Eliot’s neck as Quentin mumbles, “I wish I could go with you.”

“Well, that definitely doesn’t make any sense,” Eliot points out, pushing his palms up under the hem of Quentin’s sweater to pet at his lower back. “No point in both of us taking risks.”

“No, I know. They’re probably not letting non-patients in, anyway, I just. I dunno. Stupid protectiveness, I guess.”

“It’s not stupid,” Eliot says softly, feeling all wriggly and warm inside, because— fuck, he doesn’t need to be protected, generally, but it’s alway nice, the reminder that Quentin would try. Has, many times before. “Just not particularly practical, right now.”

“Yeah. You’ll be fine, though?” And this time it does sound like a question, Quentin’s own anxiety subsuming his conviction.

Petting, petting, petting, his skin, Eliot tips his head over to rest against Quentin’s, eyes still closed. “Yeah, sweet boy. I’ll be fine.”


“So it turns out, I can’t see,” Eliot announces to the condo, letting the front door close behind him while he goes to drop two take out bags onto the counter. “Also I picked up Indian on my way home, so that’s dinner tonight. And probably tomorrow. Where are you?”

“Bedroom, be right out,” comes the echoing call of Quentin’s voice.

Eliot washes his hands on autopilot, then kneels down to pet Dessy, who had bothered to come out and say hi to him, thank you very much. She puts her little feet up on his knee, which they’re supposed to be discouraging her from doing, but just this once maybe it’s okay. She is, after all, very cute. He pets her soft little ears and listens to the sounds of Quentin puttering around in the bedroom, letting the tension of being outside slowly fade. The hedges’ antiviral wards were incredibly taxing to cast, a nearly continuous draw of power to keep them up, and he’s feeling the fatigue of it set in now. And on top of that, the goop that made his eyes dilate still hasn’t worn off yet, so everything feels too bright. Maybe a nap before dinner might be a good idea.

“So, glasses?” Quentin asks, emerging from the bedroom with his laptop under one arm, pushing his hair back out of his face with one hand.

“Glasses,” Eliot agrees, nudging Des off him so he can— with some effort— stand up. “Or contacts, maybe. Were you watching porn?”

“Wha— no?” Quentin splutters, turning just the cutest shade of pink all over. Delightful. “Oh, fuck off, stop changing the subject. How’d it go?”

“Fine. You were right, it was probably worth it. Wards took, everyone was masked,” Eliot sighs leaning into the edge of the counter so he can loop his arms around Quentin’s waist and reel him in for a kiss, tender and sweet. “So I have astigmatism, which is likely the cause of the headaches. On top of that I have some issues with like, close up stuff? Which could just be an age thing, but I’m a little young. But...”

“You’re a little young for arthritis too,” Quentin fills in, smoothing his hands up Eliot’s sides, inside his blazer. “Who knows what the Monster did.”

“Exactly.” A wave of frustration rises in Eliot’s chest and he— makes himself stop, and feel it. Fights the urge to push it down and put it away with all the other shitty circumstances he’s weathered in his life, because he had no choice, because all he could do was make the best of what he had. When he opens his eyes, Quentin’s watching him, thoughtful and quiet. Forcing out a laugh, Eliot reaches up, catching a loose strand of Quentin’s hair and tucking it back. “I’ll talk to Patrick about it on Saturday.”

“Okay,” Quentin says, an edge to his voice like he’s not sure if he should push or not. “You can talk to me, too, you know? I mean, I didn’t suggest you find a therapist because I’m tired of listening to you or anything.”

“No, I know. It’s just—” Floundering, Eliot casts around, trying to put a thought together. God, he’s tired, and his head hurts. Helpless, he focuses back on Quentin. “I don’t think I have the bandwidth, right now. But I tell you things, I promise.”

“I know you do.” Q looks down, a little downturn to his mouth, hands tightening on Eliot’s sides. “I just hate that I couldn’t go with you, I guess? I feel like a shitty partner. I wanted to help, I wanted to be there. Just like— fucking pandemic, you know? I couldn’t even go with you and wait in the waiting room.”

God, Quentin and his big fucking heart. Every single fucking day, Eliot loves him. “Hey,” he says gently, tipping Quentin’s face up until he can rest their foreheads together. “Want to take a nap with me?”

“That, I can definitely do.”

They don’t really end up napping so much as curling up together in the dim light which can’t help but leak in around the edges of the blackout curtains. There’s spells that could fix that, but Eliot honestly feels like if he has to cast anything else today he might totally lose control of it, so— they can deal with a little light. It’s nice enough to be in the dimness, stripped down to underthings with Quentin’s warm little body in his arms, Dessy a little ball against the back of his knees.

“They gave some recommendations for places to get glasses online,” Eliot says, into the quiet space between their bodies where Quentin’s playing with his fingers. “I ordered a pair of contacts through them, but I don’t know— seems like a good idea to have some back up as well, in case it turns out I don’t like having plastic stuck to my eyeballs.”

“Also glasses are sexy,” Quentin points out, a little sparkle in his eye, as the tips of his fingers slide along the sensitive insides of Eliot’s, sparkly little jolts of sensation.

“That’s your professor kink talking. Are we going to be role-playing Dr. Jones and his class of horny co-eds now?”

Quentin’s face scrunches up a little. “See, usually in my Indiana Jones fantasies, I’m Indiana Jones.”

“Uh-huh. Sure.” Quentin snickers, and Eliot frees his hand long enough to catch Quentin’s chin and hold him still long enough to kiss him, lick out gently along the sweet plush swell of his lower lip. “I think you’d look fetching with ‘fuck me’ written on your eyelids.”

“That’s not movie accurate,” Quentin complains, rolling away enough to glare at him, and then they disturb the dog for a bit wrestling playfully until Quentin’s flat on his back, one of Eliot’s arms and legs hooked comfortably over him. “So they told you about places you can get glasses online?”

“Yeah, seems like the best idea might be to get a couple of styles from someplace cheap to figure out what I like,” Eliot muses, tracing the tips of his fingers along the line of Quentin’s rib cage under his t-shirt. With his head on crook were chest meets shoulder like this, he can feel the expand and contract of every breath, slow and steady. “I can get a better pair, you know— After.”

“Says the man who owns three watches and doesn’t even wear them,” Quentin mumbles, an edge of fondness to his voice. The shoulder under Eliot’s head shifts as Q reaches up to catch a loose strand of Eliot’s curls, playing with it gently. “You’re going to have a pair of glasses to match every tie pin.”

“Why pass up an opportunity for self-expression?” Eliot murmurs, eyes falling closed again. This is maybe even better than napping. Why be unconscious when he can feel Quentin’s fingers in his hair, Quentin’s body under his, the feeling of worn-soft cotton and the scent of citrus shampoo?

This is so much better.


Several days later, they find themselves parked in front of the full length mirror in their bedroom with a selection of new frames spread out between them. Q’s got the puppy in his lap; she’s mostly content to be held, though watching the new items with intense curiosity. The box, which has already passed a sniff-test, thank you very much, gets kicked aside so Eliot can stretch out his bad leg, leaving only the 3 new pairs of glasses on the ground, waiting.

“Well. I guess I just...” Eliot mutters, and then reaches for the first pair, glancing up to catch Quentin’s smile, small and in the corner of his mouth.

The whole lack of ceremony involve feels really weird, somehow, but— they’re fucking glasses, it’s not the crown of the High King or anything. Decisively, Eliot picks up the pair of thick black frames and slides them onto his face, blinking and— oh.

“Oh,” he says, not even looking at his own reflection in the mirror, just— looking at Quentin, who’s tilting his head quizzically, the little smile on his face. “Um— I can see your hair.”

“Oh my god,” Quentin chuckles, incredulous. “Could you not see my hair before? Jesus, why did you wait this long?”

“I mean the individual strands!” Eliot protests, but it doesn’t matter, Quentin’s dissolving into giggles, his ridiculous donkey-laugh making Dessy squirm around in his arms, trying to twist around to lick his face.

“How can you be as detail oriented as you are and not be able to see individual strands of hair,” Quentin wheezes, forcing in a deep breath. “I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to laugh at you.”

“Sure you didn’t,” Eliot grumbles, but really, he can never be too upset, if Quentin’s smiling. Q smiles are hard won, and never to be taken for granted. Turning his attention to the mirror, Eliot— blinks again, adjusting to the odd clarity of his own face in the mirror. It’s not like he doesn’t know what he looks like, but it’s still a little jarring. “It’s like watching a movie you watched on VHS a million times as a kid, but now in like ultra-high def.”

“Except the movie is your own face?” Quentin teases, sticking out one of his legs so his toes can poke at Eliot’s thigh, wriggling there.

“Kinda, yeah.” Eliot twists his head this way and that, assessing. The glasses pull a lot of focus, that’s for sure. Definitely a good possibility for a day he doesn’t want to bother with eyeliner. Maybe they draw a little too much focus— he hasn’t really been this aware of his nose in a while, and it’s not like that particular feature needs an accent. “What do you think?”

“Sexy,” Q says, smirking when Eliot glances over at him, rolling his eyes.

“Is that going to be your feedback for every pair?”

“Probably,” Quentin retorts, shameless.

The second pair is a browline style, a thick band of dark blue with a silver nose piece and silver wire at the bottom. The blue might be a bit restrictive, in terms of color matching, but then again he’s not married to this pair specifically, if he likes the style. Picking them up, he slides off the first pair and puts on the new ones. They sit differently, he notices immediately, more securely than the last pair. The nose piece is different, little plastic grippy feet verses a contour built into the frame. They feel less like they’re going to slide off his face, which is potentially nice, but looking in the mirror, he’s not sure about the overall silhouette.

“I like the other pair better,” Quentin muses, tipping his head towards the mirror to get a better look. In his lap, Dessy makes a bid for freedom towards the frames on the floor, but Q gets his hand around her belly in time, tugging her back to sit. “You kind of look like an old timey reporter.”

“You gonna be my Lois Lane?” Eliot teases, fond, leaning over towards them so he can steal a kiss, still marveling at just how fucking beautiful Q is in HD glory. How had he missed looking at him like this for years?

“Hey, Lois is a badass, I should be so lucky,” Quentin cuts in, then makes a face. “Well most Lois, DCU Lois was— I mean, it’s not really for me to say she was kind of lame, but Julia also thought that—”

Smiling, Eliot looks back in the mirror, listening to Quentin ramble with half an ear, truly one of his favorite sounds in the world. Yeah, Eliot’s kind of with him on this one— this pair might fight a very specific aesthetic, he definitely owns some 1950s inspired suites, but that’s hardly an everyday look. These will probably get about as much play as the watches sitting on top of Eliot’s dresser. The last pair is maybe the simplest, golden wire frames around circular lenses, not much of a statement to them. They sit lighter on his face than the other pairs had, comfortable, like a pair of sunglasses.

“Oh,” Quentin says, a soft under current to his voice that makes Eliot look up at him first, rather than into the mirror. His face is open, tender and vulnerable, looking at Eliot like he’s seeing something he didn’t expect. “Those. I like those.”

Glancing in the mirror, Eliot can see immediately why. They’re not really the same as the glasses he’d had towards the end of their other life, not really. These are rounder, and the wire is thinner, but— they feel familiar. They look like they belong on his face, in a way the other pairs hadn’t, not quite. “Yeah, I. Me too.”

When he looks back over at Quentin, he’s already moving, setting the dog aside so he can crawl over towards Eliot. Grinning, a little embarrassed without really knowing why, Eliot tips his face up to let Q touch the temple of the glasses gently, look at him close up.

“Still sexy? Do I look like an old man now?”

“I still thought you were sexy even when you were an old man,” Quentin murmurs, and—

It cuts in sharp, an ache behind his breastbone as memory surfaces, hazy vaseline filtered recollection impossibly beautiful and impossibly perfect for all it’s imperfection. Head-spinning, unbelievable, incomprehensible, to have been loved for a whole life time, and to be loved again, still, better. They had fucked, as empty nesters, as often as their bodies allowed— Fillory didn’t have Viagra, but they had magic and enough experience at that point to make it fit to purpose. At no point had he ever wanted Quentin any less, loving every laugh line on his face, loving the care it took to grow old together— how rubbing soothing salve onto Quentin’s achy knees would turn to whiskery kisses, that damn beard Quentin was so proud of getting in the way of everything but— Eliot had loved it. Eliot had loved him.

Loves him still.

The kiss happens like a bloom, unfolding and sweet and wonderful, Quentin’s lip petal soft between his own. Darting his tongue out against it earns him a sigh, sweet and content, as Quentin shifts closer, close as he can get, kneeling on the floor by Eliot’s hip. It’s not an ideal position for kissing, and yet Eliot can’t be bothered to fix that, really, much more interested in getting his hands up under the back of Quentin's sweater to pet at the silky skin of his lower back, flirt fingertips under the waistband of his pants to— yeah, make him squirm just like that.

They break apart to breathe eventually, and Eliot— planning to move on to kissing Quentin’s neck— gets totally, embarrassingly distracted by his eyes, the texture of the crows feet at the corners. Whatever’s happening on his face makes Quentin blush, pinking up adorably on the apples of his cheeks, looking down and away for a moment, then back up, shy and pleased. “You’re still sexy, by the way. And not an old man, in case that wasn’t clear.”

“What, we’re not going to progress to you erotically calling me Grandpa?”

“See, I was going to suck your dick, but now I’m reconsidering doing that. Like, ever again.”

“Yeah, I’m really worried about that,” Eliot sighs, fondly, brushing his thumb against the corner of Quentin’s mouth. His lips are so fucking pretty, all of him is so gorgeous, it’s going to be a problem if Eliot suddenly functionally useless now that he can actually see how hot his partner is. Then Quentin’s tongue darts out, soft and sweet and wet, brushing just against Eliot’s thumb, and— swallowing, he says, “Put the dog out in the living room?”

He gets up on the bed because—

— because he wants to watch, wants to see, in this new 1080p world suddenly available to him, the way Quentin slides between his knees. Laying on his back on the floor would afford him an excellent view of the ceiling, sure, but— Good god, Quentin on his knees...

“Hi,” Eliot murmurs, stupidly, reaching up to brush his fingers along the apple of Quentin’s cheekbones as Q’s fingers go for his belt. Quentin’s eyes flick up and linger flicking around Eliot’s face.

“You’re like— so hot right now, it’s insane,” Quentin says, matter of factly, cupping his palm over the front of Eliot’s pants to rub— oh— across the swell of Eliot’s cock and balls.

“I want to kiss you.” Eliot drags his thumb down to rub at the corner of Quentin’s sweet pretty mouth— He can see Q’s stubble. What the fuck. “Why can’t you kiss me and suck my dick at the same time?”

“Because there’s no justice in the world,” Quentin teases, eyes sparkling. “I’ll kiss you after, how’s that. Let you taste it.”

“Oh fuck,” Eliot groans, hips lifting up into Quentin’s hand of their own accord as a sweet pulse of pleasure shoots down to pool in his pelvis, his cock twitching where it’s filling under Quentin’s hand. “I remember when you were shy.”

“Was I?” Quentin asks, feigning innocence, big guileless eyes as he pulls Eliot’s cock out, helping him adjust the fabric so the zipper isn’t biting at Eliot’s balls. Blinking up at Eliot, he says, voice high, “Golly, I dunno if it’s gonna fit.”

“Fuck off,” Eliot laughs, reaching out to get his fingers in the hair at the back of Quentin’s head, tugging him forward sharply so Quentin moans, and then his fucking beautiful mouth is flirting along the edge of Eliot’s half-hard dick, tongue like liquid velvet.

It feels incredible, Quentin knows Eliot, knows how to play him like a fiddle. But he can’t really get lost in it, doesn’t want to, when there’s all this newness. Gathering Quentin’s loose hair up, Eliot watches, watches the stretch of his dick sliding between Quentin’s pretty pink lips, stretched wide and wet. And there’s the fact that Quentin keeps looking up, straining at this angle but trying to see Eliot

Because he really does like the glasses. Of all things to make Eliot feel unexpectedly sexy on a weekday afternoon— but it does, it really does. Or maybe that’s just Q.

“I can’t get over,” Eliot breathes out, running his mouth off just so he doesn’t get fucking overwhelmed, snatching for a measure of composure wherever he can. “—how fucking gorgeous you are. God, it feels so good, sweetheart.”

Quentin moans in response, the vibrations bouncing up Eliot’s jangly nerves, a wave pleasure making his dick twitch and his balls ache, fuck— Quentin’s clever tongue rubbing up against the underside as he works the head and shaft, hand working in tandem at the base. His blowjob technique has improved dramatically, Eliot thinks wildly, but it’s still— wet and sloppy and good, god, so good, everything Eliot likes best, he’s everything Eliot likes best.

“Still want me to come in your mouth?” Eliot murmurs, once he’s teetering on the edge of it, fucking sweating through his shirt, rivulets of sweat streaking down from his temples but— fuck, he’s right there. Quentin looks up at him, just a little bit blissed out, good god Eliot’s guy likes sucking dick— petting his fingers through the silking strands of Quentin’s hair, he gives a quick tug, watching Quentin’s eyes sharpen. “In your mouth, sweet boy?”

Quentin’s only response is a moan, pulling back until the head of Eliot’s dick is resting on his lip, just, on the edge of his wide open mouth.

“Oh fuck, Q,” Eliot gasps, hips snapping forward, brushing the edge of Quentin’s tongue, but— in fucking high definition, he gets to watch— the thought of it is hot enough to tip him over the edge, the snap of bright sweet release, as white streaks paint out across Quentin’s tongue, the edge of his lips. Q works him through it with steady pulls of his hand, until Eliot’s shying away from the friction. “Oh, Jesus, come up here.”

Hauling Quentin up onto the bed is a frantic scramble, Eliot scoots back so Quentin can actually get purchase on the edge, tucking his hands against the backs of Quentin’s thighs just under the perfect swell of his ass. Then they’re kissing, wet and messy, sharing the bitter taste of Eliot’s come between them. God, Quentin’s thighs, his ass, Eliot just came and he can’t stop from feeling him up, solid structure of him, dense tight compact little body, moaning in Eliot’s mouth as Eliot’s hands squeeze at his ass, fingers digging between the cheeks as much as he can through the layers of thick denim.

“What do you want,” Eliot pants into his mouth, once Q stops sucking on his tongue long enough to let him form words. The hard line of Quentin’s dick is rubbing against Eliot’s stomach, and he wants just about whatever it will take to make Quentin come. “Want my mouth, baby?”

“God— fuck,” Quentin pants, hands dragging through Eliot’s curls and down his neck, until Quentin’s pushing him back flat on the bed. “Not gonna last— I want you to get your fucking shirt off.”

Eliot just— laughs, delighted, god, horny Quentin who’s forgotten to be awkward about it is a certain special kind of thrill. There’s a moment of confusion where their hands collide, Quentin trying to push Eliot’s shirt up his torso while Eliot goes for the buttons, neither of them getting very far in the process.

“Here, get your dick out,” Eliot instructs, catching Quentin’s (lovely, solid, square, fuzzy) wrists and pushing them back towards his groin demonstratively. “I got this.”

“It’s unfair,” Quentin groans, scrabbling at his own pants while Eliot has the actual presence of mind to cast a spell, undoing all his button’s at once. Whatever protest of unfairness Quentin had been about to elaborate upon dies in his throat, one hand curling around his dick, the other flailing forward to land on Eliot’s chest, tangling into the hair.

“What’s unfair?” Eliot prompts, getting his hands on Quentin’s hips, and then back, down, taking advantage of the open waist of Q’s pants to get himself two palmfuls of ass, encouraging Quentin to rock into his own hand.

“That you’re already the hottest person in creation,” Quentin groans— god, he’s so lovely like this, all pink everywhere, mouth red with use, hair sliding loose from it’s little bun, riding into his own hand while he just stares at Eliot, mouth open. “And then you put on glasses, and you get hotter. God— can you—?”

“Yeah, I got you,” Eliot murmurs, petting the fingertips of his left hand inwards until he’s stroking just over the pucker of Quentin’s rim, dry, too dry to do anything but touch while Quentin loses himself to sensation, braced on his knees over Eliot’s chest. “You gonna come on me? Hmm? That why you wanted my shirt off? C’mon, give it to me, get me messy.”

“God, we’re so weird,” Quentin laughs, leaning forward so his weight is baring into his hand on Eliot’s chest. “All this come shit— remember when you came on my face for Valentine’s day last year?”

“Baby, the come shit is hardly the weirdest thing about us,” Eliot says dryly, petting his fingers gently around where Quentin’s hole is clenching, chasing pleasure. “It’s not even the weirdest thing about our sex life, if we’re being honest.”

“S’ good though,” Quentin slurs, barely audible over the slick sound of his hand on his dick, already dripping wet from his own precome.

“Yeah, it is,” Eliot murmurs, giving Quentin’s ass an affectionate little squeeze. “Come on sweet boy, come all over me, mark me up.”

Quentin’s face knots up when he comes, brows drawing together on a grunt as it hits, and god Eliot’s seen it probably hundreds of times across two lifetimes but never quite like this, with the crystal clarity of clear vision all shiny and new. He almost doesn’t notice streaks of hot come landing on his skin, up across his chest, except he can’t not notice Quentin noticing it. Can’t help but arch his back in response, pushing his chest up just to see the way it makes Quentin shudder.

“Wow,” Quentin sighs, sinking back to sit on his heels once Eliot retrieves his hands, settling them instead on Quentin’s hips. “I don’t know how I was expecting this to go, but—”

“You mean you didn’t wake up this morning planning to maul me?” Eliot teases, nudging Quentin back enough that Eliot can sit up without smearing come all over his shirt in return. “Gee, that seems like an oversight on your part.”

“It does, in hindsight,” Quentin agrees, still— a little come-stupid, maybe, and cute as hell, smiling when Eliot noses in to kiss him. Sweet, slow, lazy kisses leading nowhere, kisses simply for the sake of being kissed. Quentin’s hands are on his face when he pulls away, and one of them drifts to touch the temple of Eliot’s new golden frames. “You really do look— I dunno, I keep thinking handsome? I don’t think I’ve ever thought someone was handsome before in my life, but— you look all classical. It’s good. Goes with your vibe.”

“Hey, I’ll take handsome.” He’ll take another kiss, too, with Quentin right there for the kissing. But short, brief this time, because— “I really need to take a shower before this cools.”

“You’re a magician,” Quentin reminds him, like Eliot’s somehow forgotten this fact. “You can just—” He wiggles his fingers in some loose approximation of a tut, but Eliot scoffs.

“Nasty, Coldwater. Some of us have standards.”

The TV is playing when Eliot emerges from the shower, the familiar audiotrack of Into The Spiderverse audible even from the bedroom. It’s not a favorite of Eliot’s, when it comes to Quentin’s comfort movies, and he briefly debates just hanging out in here until the movie’s done. But that’s not really what he wants, if he’s being honest with himself, and that’s more or less habit these days, even if it hasn’t quite become the immediate instinct yet. Sliding the golden frames back onto his face, he blinks the world into focus, marveling still at the difference even as he walks out into the main floor of the condo.

Quentin’s laying on the couch on his back with his head twisted towards the tv, but he raises his eyebrows at Eliot as he immerges, lifting his legs a little in invitation. Eliot nods, detouring long enough to scoop up his tablet and the puppy, gently dropping Des down onto Quentin’s stomach as he settles in, tablet propped up in Quentin’s shins.

He’s all set to tune the movie out, except well. He keeps kind of getting sucked into it. The vibrant colors and flashing effects which in the past seemed nauseating now really do seem like— interesting texture. He’s heard Quentin’s spiel about truly interesting use of computer animation at least three times in the last eleven months, but now he— kind of gets it. The tablet ends up laying abandoned on the couch next to him as he sinks further into it’s depths, hands on Quentin’s shin as he watches the visual language of the movie spill out in front of him: animation as artform.

By the time they reach the sequence in the collider, Eliot has to admit, “Okay, this is a lot cooler when I can actually see it.”

“Oh my god,” Quentin groans, pulling his foot back to kick at Eliot’s side. “That’s it, you have to listen to me when I tell you to do stuff now.”

“I will do no such thing,” Eliot lies blandly, catching Quentin’s foot and digging his thumb into the arch of his terrible white and grey gym socks. “I swear this movie made me seasick before.”

“Unbelievable,” Quentin sighs, toes wiggling in Eliot’s hand. Eliot grins, and settles in to finish the movie.