Elusion

Dakin wakes suddenly. It takes him a moment to think where he is – in Irwin's flat. Irwin is asleep beside him, sprawled awkwardly with one hand flung over the edge of the bed, exhaling in soft snores.

It's very early. Dakin squints at the clock. Half past six on a Sunday morning. He's never stayed the night before. Well, never in the handful of times they've done this now. Nor has he taken Irwin round to his own home, making the excuse to himself that he lives on the second floor of his building and there's no lift. It's only an excuse. He knows that Irwin could manage two flights of stairs if he needed to, perhaps slowly, but he could do it.

No, the reason why Dakin hasn't asked him is the same as the reason why he's never stayed overnight before. It frightens him, letting this become real. He didn't mean to stay last night, but he must have fallen asleep.

Cautiously he slides out from under the duvet and pulls on his clothes, now rumpled from lying on the floor. He could leave a note – there's no shortage of paper and pens in Irwin's study – but he doesn't. He'll wait three days, four, five, but then there will be an itch in his mind and he will punch in the numbers on his mobile, impatient to meet again for a drink... and more.