Wrote about a sunset in "Armchair" and wanted to keep the theme.

A partner piece to "A Blanket of Stars" and "Exchange." Can be read in any order.


Naruto looked like a specter in the waning sunlight.

Lee sometimes wondered how he had gotten the god of daylight to fall in love with him.

Sometimes, he realized he might be conceited, because Naruto never actually said how he felt about Lee.

Other times, Lee was broken from his own reverence over Naruto's beauty. Like now, at three in the morning, as the blonde snored as though his throat was closing up, even on his side.

Usually, the dull thud of his trachea against itself would lull Lee into a comfortable rest. But not that evening. Lee watched the moon from the edge of their bed for a long time.

It had been two weeks since Gaara had come home. Naruto had told him not to worry too much. Gaara was the most successful of the three of them, and his business ventures often took him out of the country.

Still, Lee couldn't help but wonder if Gaara was sleeping well, if the rising sun woke him as easily when they weren't there. He wondered if anyone else had noticed how Gaara's crystal eyes reflected that light yet.

"Lee," Naruto groaned in the semi darkness, "Why're you up?"

"I am sorry," Lee said, rubbing Naruto's sleepy face and kissing his forehead, "Did I wake you?"

"No," Naruto grumbled and slurred , "Bud I can' go back a sleep if yah don' lie down."

Lee felt his heart squeeze, even though he didn't think that was true at all. Naruto was like a lead weight when it came to sleep.

"Okay," he whispered happily, pushing Naruto closer to the wall. The blonde rolled and shuffled, letting Lee put his arm underneath him. He put his fingers over Lee's bare heart, rested his head in the crook of Lee's chest and shoulder, and began to snore softly once more.

Lee listened, burying his face in Naruto's hair. He smelled like a sweet shampoo. Lee tried his best to relax into that smell and that feeling.

His mind wandered to where Gaara might be, and he drifted off to a troubled sleep.

"Budge over," a voice murmured in his ear. He shifted sleepily. He could feel Naruto's saliva drying on his chest.

"Hm," he murmured, "Gaara..?"

"Correct," Gaara said, "Make space."

There was no need for him to make space. There was plenty of room on their extra long California King. All Gaara had to do was slip in behind him. But Lee knew how the red head liked it.

He carefully put his hand under Naruto's head and slipped from beneath him. The sun was just beginning to rise. The sky dusted him in a delicate blue powder that Lee was enamored by.

Still, Gaara wouldn't be able to sleep if he left the windows like that. Lee was the early bird, the other two were not. He moved to get out of the bed while Gaara slipped in.

"No," Gaara said firmly, "I'll do it. Just get ready."

He drew the curtains closed and tied them carefully. Lee watched him remove his shirt in the darkness and make his way back to the bed. His sleep deprived brain wanted to ask how his trip was, how he felt he had done, if he had missed sure had missed him.

Instead, he let Gaara crawl over him in silence and attach himself to Naruto. The blonde took a deep, deep breath into Gaara's neck, and his snoring quieted to a nothing more than a calm buzz.

He slipped his arm under Gaara's side and began his nightly duty of drooling on their other partner. Gaara's sigh was bone weary, and Lee could feel him drifting off to sleep.

He lie on his back, staring at the blue streaks of light that were trying to peek out from the curtains. The feeling of loneliness sunk him deeper into the bed. He felt the drag of it keep him awake. He wondered what he was doing in bed with two people who probably only felt pity for him. He wished he didn't feel pity for himself. His heavy thoughts disallowed him sleep.

Lee began moving to get up. He moved slowly, knowing how easily Gaara woke up. A hand grabbed his wrist, tugging on it firmly.

"Lee," Gaara said menacingly into Naruto's hair, "What are you doing?"

"... It is morning, Gaara. I am going to get ready for the day," he whispered.

"Can' sleep if yah don' lie down," Naruto reiterated. Lee felt his heart zing up into his throat. The blond reached out from beside Gaara, grabbing Lee's side. The tallest of the three men was pulled back into a comfortable position.

Gaara dragged his arm so that he was wrapped around them both. He pushed his legs back so their knees fit together. Lee curled up behind his lover, pressing his lips to the base of his neck so that he could feel his heartbeat.

"S'better," Naruto slurred and wiggled as if getting comfortable. Without much time at all, he began snoring once more. Gaara grunted in agreement, and Lee listened to his breathing even out.

He let the mixing sounds of their heartbeats pull him under, leaving his loneliness in the waking world.


I need to work on setting specific scenes. Or is it better to let the readers use their imagination?