“Honey? You awake?”
“I’ve brought you some ice water. How’re you doing?”
“I feel really shit, Starsk. And my arm’s hurting like a bastard.”
“Poor baby. Gil said it’s fine for you to take some Tylenol now, but if you made that face.....yeah, that face...... to tell you to drink a lot of water and you should feel better tomorrow.”
“Don’t tell me you dragged Gil out of retirement so he could tell me to take Tylenol, keep hydrated and if I don’t feel better to....”
“....call him in the morning!” they said together, and Hutch managed a laugh.
“He didn’t mind. Anyway, he’s already been dragged out of retirement- he’s down at Walmart vaccinating people. He says they’re really starting to get moving on the program. That’s great, isn’t it?”
“You still shouldn’t have...”
Starsky took Hutch’s hand and put it against his face.
“I was worried. You were tossing and turning and you kept muttering about being too hot and your head hurting. It suddenly reminded me of.......” His voice trailed away uncertainly and Hutch hurried to reassure.
“I’m fine, babe. They warned me I might feel worse after the second shot. It means my immune system’s been woken up. Did Gil say anything else?”
“To put a cold washcloth on your poor sore arm-I’ve got one here and there’s more in the icebox. Oh and....” Starsky brightened considerably “It’s fine for you to have a shower.” He wiggled his eyebrows questioningly.
“If you think you might feel dizzy, I could always.....”
“Give me that glass of water. David Michael Starsky, if you think for one minute I’m letting you within 12 feet of that bathroom while I’m in the shower until I feel much better than I do now, then ...oh this water tastes good. So cold.”
Starsky laughed and busied himself straightening the bed and turning the pillows.
“Would you like some applesauce?”
He was rewarded with a smile that made his heart melt, and kissed his lover very gently, mindful of his headache, his aching arm, his queasy stomach, and what his mother had called “alloverness”.
“I’ll get you some. And more water.”
He picked up the empty glass. At the door he paused to glance over his shoulder.
“How would you feel about a sponge bath? No-don’t throw that-you’ll hurt your arm.....!”