Chapter 17 - On The Precipice
Shadow's brain entirely shut down as lips captured his mouth. He drowned in sensation of the lips, hot against his own and tasting strongly of chilli. Sonic's hands were on him, now, he could feel the buzz of Sonic's bright Chaos Aura against his skin as his hands curved around his shoulder and hip, pulling him in closer, deepening the kiss.
Butterflies swirled in his stomach, his heart pounding so fiercely he felt like it was about to burst through his ribcage. He had no idea what to do, his muscles frozen even as his blood sang with joy. Sonic was moving against him, his lips softly caressing, urging Shadow to respond. Awkwardly, Shadow matched Sonic's motions of lips and tongue, his knees and spine suddenly feeling like they were melting as they found a rhythm, hot and wet and just so... perfect.
When Sonic finally let him up for air, Shadow gasped, trembling under the onslaught of hormones that had suddenly and forcefully reminded him that whatever his chronological age, physically he was still a teenage hedgehog.
Sonic, of course, was grinning like a maniac, "Wow." the blue speedster breathed.
"What..." Shadow tried to control his body, which was still trembling despite all the mental commands he could throw at it, "Why..." he cleared his throat, trying to gather his thoughts despite the sound of his blood still pounding in his ears.
Sonic looked at him oddly, still smiling, "C'mon, Shadow, you wanted that, right?"
Shadow froze again, any possible reply catching in his throat. All the secret thoughts he had carefully hidden even from himself surging suddenly to the forefront of his mind. How had Sonic known? Was he really that transparent?
Sonic was starting to look worried at Shadow's total lack of reaction, the self-satisfied grin sliding slowly off his face, "You did... right? Cos if you didn't I..."
"I wanted it." Shadow interrupted, surprising even himself, "But I didn't... we hardly know each other." Shadow finished, his grasp of language still shaky after that single kiss had managed to just about shut down most of his higher functions.
The smile had crept back onto Sonic's face by now and he gently took Shadow's hand and led him over to the bed so they could both sit down. "Listen, Stripes, I know you haven't been here long, but one thing we learned around here is that sometimes... you just gotta go for it. If you hold back, you might not get another chance." Old pain clouded Sonic's eyes for a moment and Shadow knew he was remembering loss, "You and me... hell, dude, I ain't blind, I can see how you act around me." his grin turned into a brilliant smile, "An' besides, you're hot."
That almost shocked a laugh out of Shadow, which he carefully restrained, "So, basically what you're saying is 'Carpe Diem'?"
Sonic blinked, "Uh... maybe, if I knew what the hell that meant."
Shadow shook his head in exasperation, "It means 'Seize the Day'. It's Latin."
"Oh. Well, sure. If it works out, that's awesome, if it doesn't that's too bad, but we've got nothing to lose by trying," Sonic gave Shadow a sly look, "And you sure seemed to be enjoying that kiss - and let me tell ya, that was just a warm up. "
Shadow felt his cheeks heat up slightly and he once against cursed his lack of control over autonomic functions.
Sonic chuckled, "C'mere, Stripes, and I'll give ya the main performance..."
Shadow found himself completely unable to resist as Sonic drew him in for another kiss. This time, Shadow's brain felt less clouded as he leaned into the kiss, his own hands coming up to caress Sonic's chest and sides carefully avoiding the razor-sharp quills on his back. Their hands lanced together for a few moments and Shadow felt Sonic's Chaos aura pulse in time to the heartbeat that thundered in Shadow's head. He felt, dizzy, intoxicated at the feelings coursing through him as Sonic's tongue tangled with his own, his hands possessive, pulling him closer as waves of heat and desire surged through Shadow.
The door opened and the two hedgehogs suddenly pulled apart, startled.
Tails stood in the doorway, his namesakes swishing, "Hi Sonic, hi Shadow." He greeted them both. The little fox looked between them for a moment, "Were you making kissy-faces just now?" He asked matter-of-factly, "Cos if you are, I'll go hang out with Rotor for a while, cos eww - kissing is so gross." the kit made a face at that last pronouncement.
The two hedgehogs stared, dumbfounded for a moment. Sonic recovered first, "Uh, no little bro, I think we're done for now."
"Cool." Tails replied, "Want to come play dirt hockey with me, Sonic?" the fox said cheerfully, "Shadow can come too, if he wants."
The fox kit looked up at his big brother with such totally open, innocent eyes, trusting, accepting completely and without question. Shadow could only stare in astonishment, a distant part of him praying that other people found this... development quite as easy to accept, though Shadow's cynical side doubted they really would.
"Not right now, Tails," Sonic smiled, ruffling his little brother's head fur affectionately. "We've got some mission planning to do. We'll hang out later, ok?"
"Kay," Tails replied placidly, grabbing a hockey stick and a puck from one corner of the room before ambling back outside, where the rain had finally cleared to leave pale blue skies in its wake.
"So, business before pleasure, then?" Shadow asked slyly. Sonic looked up at him and two spots of colour suddenly bloomed on the blue hero's cheeks as he processed what shadow had just said and, more importantly, the low, sultry way Shadow had said it.
Sonic was never one to take that kind of challenge laying down, however, so he grinned back, "Oh sure, Stripes. We got loads of business to take care of, so I guess we'll have to match that with the pleasure later, huh?" Sonic's eyes sparkled mischievously even as he turned to search the cabinet at the foot of his bed for something.
Shadow regarded him for a moment, at last able to allow himself to admire the lines and contours of Sonic's form. Thoughts set free by Sonic's actions bubbling away inside Shadow's head. He actually felt better than he had in quite some time - relaxed, comfortable, energised. He was, also, frankly, astonished by his own daring - Sonic seemed to have a way of bringing out the worst in him (or the best, depending on your viewpoint), regardless of universe.
Shadow's sultry smile vanished, however, when he saw Sonic twitch in pain as he moved unwisely, stretching the bruised areas on his side.
"Careful." Shadow warned quietly, gently taking hold of Sonic's arm, "Don't make it any worse than it already is."
"Eh, I'll be fine," Sonic replied, waving Shadow off as he rose, clutching a stack of papers.
Shadow raised a sceptical eye ridge at him, "Are you sure you're capable of going on this mission?"
Sonic rolled his eyes, "C'mon, Stripes. We've been through this. I need to be there. Besides," he added with a cheeky grin, "I've got you as back-up, don't I?"
"Always." Shadow said very softly, his garnet eyes intense.
"So chill out, huh?" Sonic said with a tone of finality. He carried the papers over to the bed, unfolding them on the only flat surface on the room. Shadow realised quickly that it was a hand-drawn map of Robotroplis. Not everywhere was displayed, and some areas were more detailed than others, but it was still a very good depiction of the Machine City.
"Is this yours?" Shadow asked with some curiosity.
"Yeah," Sonic replied casually, "I copied the base plans from Sally's master copy, then I fill in the details every time I go in there and find something new."
Shadow blinked, surprised. He never would have figured Sonic for a draftsman, but then, knowing his environment did seem to be important to this version of Sonic, at least...
"These are the places we're going for," Sonic began, pointing out a couple of locations on the map. Shadow drew in closer, his shoulder brushing up against Sonic's, feeling the warm, pleasant buzz of Sonic's chaos aura as he did so. Shadow listened carefully and attentively as Sonic explained their route in, feeling comfortable and relaxed for the first time since the Robotnik of his universe had awoken him from the pod.
Author's Note: Short chapter just to reassure you all that this fic is NOT abandoned. I will finish it even if it kills me. Which it might. I have been insanely busy between changing jobs three goddamn times and planning my wedding. But this fic WILL be finished. I promise you!