For Bonfire Night 2005, a little Luke and Walker. [more of their stories are indexed here]
Apologies that it's a day late. The first line beginning comes from squashed, because I was having a real blank-page-bad sort of day.
The night air was soft, like a well-loved blanket, still tinted with the smell of wood smoke and explosives, even though it was hours now since they'd set off the last of the fireworks and the bonfire was nothing more than smouldering ashes.
Behind him, the windows of the house glowed yellow, and if he listened he could hear Walker, Bri and Jenna stacking glasses and laughing about something, overlaid by the distant whisper of a late night train rocking it's way to a depot somewhere. It had been a good party, but he was glad Lee hadn't pressured them into going into town with his crowd to finish it off with clubbing.
Luke tucked his chilly fingers into his jean pockets and hunched his shoulders, allowing the reflected light of the city bouncing off the low clouds to light his final circuit of the garden. The wind made the hedge across the bottom rustle and rock, and Luke shivered a little, his warm wine glow finally loosing the battle with the season and with his body clock. He shuffled around the edge of the fire pit, checking that everything looked out and safe to him, and then crouched down, stretching out his hands and leaning over to catch the last warmth of the pale grey ashes. He dislodging a charred remnant of branch to poke at the centre with. A few fragments drifted up towards the clouds, but no flames stuttered back to life.
It was a quiet night, and Walker was no ninja, so Luke didn’t startle when his boyfriend crept up close and brushed damp fingers over the base of Luke’s neck, where his undercut left the sensitive skin naked to the cool night air. Instead he twisted his knee into the trampled grass and turned to grab Walker around the thighs, not caring that he was probably leaving charcoal smudges on those designer jeans. He faked shouldering Walker onto his back, before pulling him close and off balance so he squawked and clutched Luke’s shoulders to keep his balance.
“What?” Luke smiled back, unrepentant. “You didn’t think I was going to drop you, did you?”
“No! Yes? God - you … come here.”
Walker wriggled around so they could kiss, cold lips and smoky heat, until Luke started to feel a little drunk again, all warm and not quite real.
“Mmmm.” Walker broke away. “You taste good. And you’re distracting. I came down to say I’d saved us a couple of sparklers.”
“Romantic.” Luke deadpanned, and Walker swatted his shoulder.
“It’s flaming chemicals, not a bunch of flowers, you … you.”
Luke squeezed Walker tight for a second, before the pair of them scrambled to their feet, hindering as much as helping with all the touches. Walker rubbed his bare hands together, grimacing at the grime he could feel, until Luke took one hand, swinging it between them.”
“Nope, no fussing just yet. Fire first, and then I’ll help you clean up, deal?”
“Good deal.” Half of Walker’s face was softly illuminated by the house lights, the other side all shadows and the flash of white teeth as he grinned. Luke’s thumb found the centre of Walker’s chin, a quick pressure that made Walker smile again and shake his head, before he looked away to pull two short sparklers out of his gillet pocket. “Here you go, pyro-boy.”
“Thank you, enabler-man.” Luke teased, taking them both and holding his other hand out, making grabby-fingers for the lighter.
“Yeah yeah, nothing says ‘I love you’ like fifty quid’s worth of home explosives.”
“Trusting me enough not to go hide in the house when I set them off?”
“Well, yeah.” Walker shrugged. “Come here.” He flicked the lighter, the small flame casting flickering shadows as Luke held both sparklers right above the dark cone at the centre. The sudden magnesium flare made Luke’s vision spotty, and he blinked that away before carefully offering one hand to Walker, making sure to keep the spitting sparks well away from either of them.
“I feel like a kid.” Walker admitted after a short contemplation of the cascading sparkles.
“Well – yeah.” Was all Luke had to say to that, before inscribing his name in the darkness. Beside him Walker chuckled and copied him. Luke brushed his shoulder against Walker’s before spending the last half of his sparkler on a quick but clear ‘Luke 4 Dave.’, the last few sparkles landing and rapidly cooling on the back of his hand.
Walker tossed his spent sparkler into the fire pit, and made sure that Luke had done the same before he felt for Luke’s hand and brought it up between them to brush a kiss over Luke’s gritty knuckles.
“Love you too.”
Luke leaned and nuzzled his – apparently cold from the sudden movement – nose against Walker’s ear until Walker let himself be kissed again.
“Come on then.” Luke whispered into the small space between them. “Warmth and showers and suchlike await.”
“Mmmm. Naked Luke!” Walker began tugging Luke back towards the house.
“Naked you.” Luke retorted, following easily.
“Really good deal, yup!”