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Understanding

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"You doing anything tonight?" He isn't expecting an affirmative answer, so he's a little surprised when Starsky, with that twinkle of his, tells his partner that yes, he has a date.

"With a woman," Starsky adds, as though if he didn't Hutch might think that the date was with a man. Hutch wonders if that would feel like a bigger betrayal than Starsky having drinks with a woman.

Of course the betrayal part only exists in his own head. Starsky has no idea that Hutch has stopped dating. That he lost interest in it the moment he put his lips around Starsky's cock. He pretends that he does have dates, always careful to name places that Starsky would never go. He spends those nights thinking, thinking about Starsky.

"Hutch?"

He's let some of what he's feeling show on his face.

"Cancel it."

"What? Why?"

He can't explain, not here, surrounded by the other detectives. He wants to tell Starsky that casual sex in his apartment is no longer working for him, that he wants more. Long walks, holding hands in the middle of nowhere, snuggling up in front of the television, and waking up in the same bed.

Starsky is still looking at him, waiting for his answer.

Hutch reaches out and touches Starsky's leg. It is the briefest of touches by their standards but he looks directly at Starsky while he does it and he sees the understanding in the other man's eyes.

Starsky smiles, slowly at first and he looks happy, Hutch realises, really happy.

Then he shrugs. "It's already cancelled."

And Hutch, drawn in by his partner's blue eyes, feels a thrill deep inside that he hasn't felt for a very long time.