As Robbe stepped out of the stall he yawned loudly.
He didn’t know how he survived uni today, he was beyond stressed and tired. It felt like all of his assignments had piled up at once and it was impossible to get enough sleep. It’s more than that though, he’s on edge.
He and Sander had been purposely avoiding each other ever since that night at the party and for good reason. Robbe couldn’t fucking believe he did that, slept with Sander Driesen. On a list of his terrible decisions that definitely ranked somewhere near the top. He’d let Sander get under his skin—well he let Sander get into his pants and now Robbe’s found himself looking around every corner on campus, so he didn’t accidentally run into him.
Robbe walked up to the sink and shoved the sleeves of his jacket up to his elbows.
He turned on the tap too hard and water deflected off the bowl, sprinkling the front of his t-shirt. He sighed and reached over to turn it down. The soap dispenser groaned in protest when he pushed it down, foam spiraling into his palm.
He rubbed his hands together briefly before sticking them under the running water and watched the bubbles rush down the drain.
He got a glimpse of himself in the mirror, the hint of a bruise mottled yellow curving over his jaw. He pressed a finger to it lightly, eyes narrowing at the slight ache. He flared with anger when he remembered how he got that bruise, but then it simmered into something hotter, burning slow deep in his stomach. He pictured Sander’s body pressed hard against his own, pinning him to the floor, licking into his mouth fast and sloppy.
He let out an involuntary shiver, bit down hard on his lip and focused on ripping paper towels out of the dispenser to clear his head.
As he ditched the last scrunched up paper ball into the bin there was a flush in one of the stalls behind him and the creak of the hinges as the stall door swung open.
Robbe glanced up, looking into the mirror to see who was behind him. He caught sight of wild green eyes. Robbe stilled, but his heart picked up and started beating double time.
He and Sander just stared at each other, Robbe was too stunned to look away. In his peripheral vision he saw Sander’s stupid doc martens and one of probably two-dozen David Bowie graphic t-shirts. There was a bruise on Sander too, where the skin of his shoulder met his neck, purpling and heart-shaped and made by Robbe’s mouth.
Seemingly in sync their eyes both dropped to each other’s mouths and Robbe swallowed harshly, the sound loud in the silence.
It must have been the last straw because in the next second Sander rushed towards him shoving him hard against the edge of the bench. It hurt where it connected sharply with Robbe’s spine, but he was quickly distracted by Sander’s mouth, bruising and relentless against his own.
Robbe pressed back just as hard, pried Sander lips open and curled his tongue inside his mouth. Sander tasted so sweet and Robbe groaned into their kiss, tugging him closer by his belt buckle until they were flush together, jackets catching with each move. Sander’s hands were hot on Robbe’s neck, the fingers on one hand twined desperately in the hair behind his ear.
Robbe wanted him closer, was frustrated with all the places they weren’t touching. He realized his hands were free and threw them behind him, his lips detaching from Sander’s so abruptly that Sander whined low and impatient, eyes opening in annoyance.
Robbe didn’t waste any time, hopped up onto the counter and gave Sander a wicked smile before he yanked him back in, one hand on the back of Sander’s neck the other fisted in his jacket. Robbe kissed him deep and wet, nipped at his bottom lip for good measure.
Sander crowded up against him, fingers scraping along Robbe’s thighs and Robbe hooked his legs around Sander’s hip in retaliation, grinded their zippers together and they both sighed out with relief.
It was too good, Robbe couldn’t believe how good it was. He was frantic, so turned on he could barely think, needed more, more, more. He slid a hand into the back pocket of Sander’s jeans, pulled him even closer, grinded against him harder and Sander gasped, released Robbe’s lips in a rush of air.
Robbe didn’t move to connect their lips again, waited for Sander to catch his breath. Sander’s hands trailed up his thighs and settled on his hips, gripping hard. Sander breathed out and hot air rushed over Robbe’s face.
Sander was a sight, his lips shined with saliva, his cheeks flushed the colour of a red sunset, eyes closed. Robbe had to resist the urge to mouth across his hot cheeks and down his jaw.
Finally, Sander opened his eyes, pupils blown wide and dark and he knocked their foreheads together.
Sander’s voice was so gravelly and Robbe felt a thrill quiver down his back, “one more time?”
Robbe grinned, “one more time.”
Sander hauled Robbe up to his lips, kissing him boneless and reached a hand down to pop the button of Robbe’s jeans.
It was decidedly not one more time.
The third time happened much the same as the first. Their shoulders knocked as they passed each other in the walkway, Robbe snarled out a harsh insult and Sander fired one back and next thing Robbe knew he was being manhandled into the sheltered archway between the arts and social sciences buildings, Sander’s deft fingers had already worked their way inside of his jeans and his teeth bit teasingly at the delicate skin of Robbe’s throat. Robbe couldn’t do much more than stifle his moans and hoped Sander didn’t notice the way his legs shook.
They parted ways after without so much as a word and Robbe tried not to consider the fact that this was becoming a frequent occurrence. One time was a mistake, two was a coincidence, but three was a bona fide trend. Robbe knew he should stop, nothing good could come of this. He still couldn’t stand Sander and there were way less complicated people to sleep with. But none of that changed the fact that the sex was good, some of the best he’d ever had.
The animosity between them fueled something raw and primal. It was like fighting, but better, hotter and with a much more satisfying end result. Plus, it wasn’t like he and Sander had entered into some binding agreement, they just wanted each other in the moment, nothing more nothing less.
They still hated each other, Sander was still the asshole that ditched him, and Sander hated Robbe for whatever fucking reason and that was the way it would stay. They had just found a more mutually beneficial way of channeling that hatred.
One day they would fizzle out and that would be the end of it.
He and Sander came into contact more often than Robbe had realized before.
They were both in the arts block; Sander took most of his visual arts units in the studios on the first floor and Robbe had different classes scattered around the building with the other film majors. They passed each other in the hallways and Robbe always had a barb ready on his tongue that didn’t at all match the heated look in his eyes.
Their constant proximity did not help their already scarce self-control. They made frequent use of empty classrooms and semi-concealed stairwells; it was like the university was purposely supplying them with convenient places to get it on.
The sixth time they hooked up Robbe was in the library. He was still riding high on the ninety-two percent grade he’d received for his mid-semester film project. He’d decided to roll with the sudden burst of motivation the good mark had brought and had spent the last hour and a half at the library getting ahead on his mandatory reading.
It was later in the afternoon, five thirty or so, the rich light of a dwindling sun splashed over the tabletops and cast golden ribbons over the tall bookshelves lined end to end.
Robbe wandered between the aisles, weaving deeper and deeper amongst the shelves. The area he was looking for was in the back right corner. The technology section had an instructional book he wanted on how to operate some older editing software he needed to become familiar with.
There was more minimal light the further he ventured between the stacks and even less people. He hadn’t seen another person since he started looking, no one had made awkward eye-contact with him or shuffled passed him in the narrow passage.
Robbe trailed is gaze idly along the shelves, his eyes rippling over the multicoloured spines. He saw a snatch of black leather through a gap in the line of books and then the flash of a silver ring. He knew that ring, had felt it smooth and warm on almost every part of his body. Robbe knew he should turn around, gather his stuff and leave. The library was dead but not completely empty, being alone with Sander in a dark corner was a very bad idea. But Robbe was already buzzing with anticipation and he couldn’t fight the want settling heavy in his stomach.
He strolled around the end of the aisle and found Sander, leaned casually against the bookshelf, flipping through a novel, the top right corner of the cover curling over his pointer finger. Sander’s hair was artfully messy, whipped around his hair by the wind outside, the blonde strands tousled. He looked fucking hot, though Robbe hated admitting it.
Sander must have felt Robbe’s presence because he looked up, smirking when he realized who it was. “Stalking me IJzermans?”
Robbe folded his arms over his chest and gave him a mocking smile. “Who would willingly be near you?”
Sander pouted, but there was a predatory look in his eye. He slinked away from where he was propped against the shelf and stepped slowly into Robbe’s space. Robbe didn’t move a fraction, refused to give in to whatever game Sander was playing. Sander smelled like musk and cigarette smoke and Robbe wanted to taste his skin.
“You would.” Sander leaned in close, his lips brushing the shell of Robbe’s ear, his breath hot. “If I remember correctly you like being near me, in fact, what was it you said? Yes Sander, harder deepe –“
Robbe threw him against the bookshelf and it teetered precariously on its wooden base, rocking back and forth for a moment before it settled. Robbe couldn’t care though, was too busy flattening his body against Sander’s and shoving his tongue into his mouth.
Sander’s hands flew to Robbe’s hips, worked their way under his old t-shirt, his fingers clawed roughly at the skin and Robbe hoped it would leave marks. Robbe couldn’t control himself around Sander and that was very, very dangerous. Anyone could walk down here and see them and if this was going where Robbe wanted it to go there would be a lot to see.
Robbe littered open mouthed kisses along Sander’s jaw and down his neck. Sander’s pulse jumped under his mouth and Robbe lapped at It greedily, sucking on the skin until Sander’s breathing turned ragged.
Sander let out a partly strangled laugh. “This is pretty ‘near’ don’t you think?”
Robbe pulled away sharply to growl, “shut up.” Before he dove back in, licked into Sander’s mouth with renewed vigor, wanted to make Sander weak and pliant. Robbe couldn’t decide on a place to put his hands, he ran them over Sander’s shoulders, down his back, wrapped them around his neck.
Robbe curled his hands in Sander’s hair and pulled. Sander’s mouth slackened and he made a sound that Robbe swore was a whimper, but then Sander spun them around and hiked Robbe’s thigh up over his hip and Robbe forgot about the whimper entirely.
Robbe had begun to lose count after the ninth or tenth time, which coincidentally, is when his brain started to catch up with his dick.
He knew he had developed a habit and worse than that one he had no interest in breaking. He hated that he didn’t want to stop and hated even more that Sander had so much power over him. He felt like he couldn’t resist, couldn’t control himself, not when Sander would stand there looking so pristine and perfect wrapped in smooth leather and staring at Robbe with dark eyes.
Robbe wanted to be the one to mess him up, to swallow all of his harsh words and turn him into a quivering mess. Robbe wanted to ruin him. He liked being the one to make Sander lose his cool exterior, tasted victory on his tongue when he watched Sander’s body pull taut like bowstring and then come undone, reducing him to nothing but shuddering moans and breathless praises.
That desire didn’t seem to be going away any time soon and that was dangerous because Robbe didn’t even know what this thing was. He and Sander didn’t spend much time talking and ninety percent of the things Sander said were infuriating anyway.
Robbe was frustrated with himself for letting Sander affect him so much, for making him so impulsive and reckless and horny all the goddamn time and that frustration just made him want Sander more. It was an endless cycle that always led back to him and Sander pressed up against some hard surface, trying unsuccessfully to smother their cries of pleasure.
Robbe was seriously starting to consider counselling.
“Ow Sander can you—”
“Just move your leg right—there”
“Oh, oh. ”
Robbe slumped against the car door, his neck crooked uncomfortably against the inside handle, but he was too exhausted to move. His pants were somewhere in the passenger seat footwell and his hair was plastered to his forehead with sweat.
Robbe blinked up at the roof of the car, waited for his vision to clear and for the blood to stop rushing in his ears. He felt relaxed and achy in all the right ways, loose and weightless.
Sander was sprawled across the seat, looking similarly blissed out, his eyes closed and chest heaving. Robbe could still feel his weight on top of him, Robbe’s fingers searching the smooth planes of his back and the hard lines of his shoulders, so undeniably male.
Robbe glanced down at his own chest, observed the pink splotches Sander had bitten into his skin. He was completely fucked out, sticky and undone. He must have looked thoroughly debauched.
Robbe had been craving this. He was unusually wired, had gotten barely any sleep the night before and woke up late for his first class. He felt pent-up and angry, kept snapping at people and got irritated at the slightest provocation. By the time he finally crossed paths with Sander, he was a livewire, stripped bare and sparking.
Sander had taken one look at his tense posture, the agitation bubbling just below the surface and taken Robbe’s arm and dragged him out to the carpark. Robbe had practically tackled him into the backseat, his hands ripping eagerly at Sander’s clothes and kissed him with too much teeth, though judging by the noises Sander had made he hadn’t seemed to mind.
Robbe caught movement out of the corner of his eye and watched as Sander reached up and traced a little smiley face into the condensation on the window. Sander noticed him staring and gave him a lazily grin, drawing a dick right beside the smiley face looking immensely pleased with himself. Robbe rolled his eyes and tried to focus on getting feeling back into his legs.
Robbe grabbed his shirt from where it was draped over the headrest and pulled in on, ignoring the way the sweat plastered it unpleasantly to his skin. Sander started tugging on his own clothes, Robbe watched him shimmy into his jeans with some difficulty and then put his own shirt back on. He leaned forward and grabbed Robbe’s jeans for him, tossing them to him and Robbe caught them before they smacked him in the face.
They were silent as they rearranged themselves, Robbe pulled on his jacket and Sander tied up his converse and then there was nothing left to do but leave. Sander didn’t make any move to get out of the car so Robbe unlocked the door and climbed out. He stood awkwardly for a second, hand still resting on the open door.
“Thanks,” Robbe said and then wanted to hit himself because who the fuck says thank you for sex . But for once Sander didn’t make fun of him, just looked at him, an intensity to his gaze that made Robbe want to squirm.
For a second Robbe thought he wasn’t going to say anything at all, just leave Robbe to his humiliating silence, but then he murmured, “Anytime.”
Robbe slammed the door shut so Sander couldn’t see his blush.
To say Robbe was drunk would be an understatement.
Moyo had talked him into tequila shots at the pre-party and he’d been downing beers since they got there. Not to mention they’d smoked a joint on the walk over and now Robbe was very buzzed.
He staggered off the dancefloor where he’d been with the boys for the last half an hour while they attempted to hit on some girls from their psychology class. Robbe had eventually gotten bored and gone off on his own.
The lights were turned low and moody, the people around him nothing but shadows melting into the dark. Ever now and then he’d see snippets as the disco lights splashed over people’s faces, illuminating their eyes or glancing off their booze-slick lips.
He tried his best not to knock into anyone as he moved across the room, but it was difficult to judge distance while he was inebriated, and he found himself stumbling over his own feet more often than not.
He was going to go in search of the kitchen when he saw a flash of brightness in the otherwise inky black room. Sander was leaning up against the wall an open can of Coke in his hand. The neon lights carved over him periodically, staining his white hair red and gold.
He looked ethereal, gorgeous and unreal and Robbe wanted to touch him. He walked over, fighting his way passed people until he reached Sander. He turned and rested against the wall beside him. Their shoulders brushed and Sander’s skin was warm, not wearing his leather jacket for once and Robbe liked the feel of his skin so he pressed closer, so they were aligned from knee to thigh.
“I think you’ve had enough,” Sander rasped, his breath stirring Robbe’s hair.
“Of you? Definitely,” Robbe slurred, giggling at his own joke and leaned more of his weight on Sander’s side.
Sander laughed under his breath, but he still had that infuriating smirk on. “Then why are you here?”
Robbe shuffled as close as he could get, curved his body over Sander’s and spoke into his ear, “You looked so lonely standing over here by yourself.” He tugged at Sander’s earlobe with his teeth. “Was gonna offer you some… company.”
He kissed across Sander’s cheek, wet and uncoordinated and then licked along the seam of his lips. Sander’s mouth parted in surprise and Robbe seized the opportunity, kissing him deeper and messier. Then Sander pulled away with a sigh, eyes blown wide, “Robbe we’ve gotta, stop you’re drunk.”
Robbe grumbled, knocked their noses together. “Don’t you wanna fuck me?”
Sander threw his head back against the wall, eyes closed in anguish. “Fuuuck Robbe you can’t say stuff like that.”
“Come on,” Robbe whined and slipped his hand up Sander shirt, felt how his stomach contracted under his fingers.
Sander rubbed a hand down his face, and groaned loudly, “Fuck, I’m taking you home.” Robbe grinned in triumph, but Sander shook his head. “I’m taking you home and putting you to bed and that’s it.”
Robbe pouted and opened his mouth to argue, but Sander shushed him and Robbe allowed himself to be led out the front door and into Sander’s car. Robbe fumbled with his own seatbelt for a while before it clicked into place. He glanced up in time to see Sander fiddling with the air-conditioning, cold air hit him his sternum and Robbe leaned towards it, trying to catch the air on his face.
Sander pulled off the curve and started driving, only asked for Robbe’s address before letting the car lapse into silence. Robbe was bored, studied the interior of the car looking for something to hold his interest. He twisted around and looked into the darkness of the backseat and let out a giggle, turning back to the front and sliding down in his seat.
Sander looked over at him in confusion, “What?”
Robbe pointed to the backseat, “We fucked there.”
Sander snorted loudly, “Yeah, I’m aware of that.”
Robbe just shrugged and reclined back in the seat, closing his eyes. He must have dozed off because he woke up when Sander turned off the car.
Sander got out and opened up the passenger door, helping to haul Robbe out of his seat. Robbe was a little annoyed at the attention and grumbled, “I can get up myself.”
Sander tutted at him, “I’d like to see you try.”
Robbe scowled but didn’t protest when Sander helped him inside and up the stairs to his apartment. Sander took over opening the front door when Robbe dropped his keys for the second time and ushered Robbe inside the apartment.
Robbe went straight to his bedroom, crashing face first onto the bed. He heard Sander moving around in another part of the house, but he was too tired to care what he was doing.
He was just beginning to drift off when he heard footsteps in his bedroom and he forced his eyes open. Sander was standing in the doorway with a strange look on his face. Robbe tried to decipher it, but it was dark and he was tired so he just mumbled, “Night Sander.”
He was asleep before Sander could say it back.
When he woke up the next morning it felt like his head had been carved open with an axe. He groaned, but quickly cut himself off when it echoed painfully inside his skull. He dragged himself closer to the left side of the bed looking for his phone to check if he had any unanswered messages from the boys when he noticed two little white aspirin tablets and a glass of water propped on the bedside table.
Robbe sat up. He remembered Sander taking him home and helping him to bed but didn’t remember him doing that. It’s strangely kind, a thought that wouldn’t have struck any of his friends to do for him, but then again, his friends were kind of oblivious most of the time.
But it definitely wasn’t something he expected from Sander. Sander didn’t do anything for Robbe unless it had the outcome of making him pissed off or horny. This was something else entirely. Robbe was confused and a little unsettled. Suddenly he’s reminded so vividly of that boy he met in the coffee shop in those first few weeks, the one who told lame jokes just to hear Robbe laugh and drew him little pictures on the napkins that came with his coffee cup. This glimpse of what Sander used to be like, what they could’ve been has thrown him off-kilter.
Sander was being almost sweet and the pleased smile on his face meant that Robbe liked it.
And fuck that was the last thing Robbe needed.