-1Like with pretty much everything else, sleeping together just sort of happened for them, without discussion, or planning, or even all that much in the way of acknowledgement.

It was right after Nathan had been shot; right after Sylar had returned; right after they had moved into Company housing; right after Molly had started having nightmares every night again.

It took about a week for Matt to get fed up with waking up in unfamiliar territory with Molly's terrified screams- or, when the man was too exhausted to keep himself awake any longer, Mohinder's terrified screams- echoing through his head, which is how one night Mohinder woke up to find Matt's twin bed being forced, piecemeal, through the door at four o'clock in the morning.

"Uh…" He couldn't quite figure out what a person was supposed to say in such a situation, so he settled for raising an eyebrow.

"When a kid has nightmares," Matt began, setting the bed frame flush against Mohinder's. "She's supposed to be able to sleep in between her parents for a night. It's supposed to be comforting. But Molly can't do that, because," here his voice faded as he went back to retrieve the box spring. "We don't sleep in the same room anymore, let alone the same bed. So, I'm fixing it."

When he came back in with the mattress and sheets, Mohinder was tying the two bed frames together with his scarf. "So they don't fall apart in the middle of the night," he explained.

"Works for me," Matt shrugged, heaving the mattress into it's correct spot.

When he came back next, he was only carrying Molly. They both crawled back in bed on either side of her without saying a word.

/Page Break/

There was no Nightmare Man to defeat this time, nothing they could fight so that Molly's nights would be fear-free from then on. It was a struggle, a slow process, to get her back to where she was before Sylar came back.

For a time, she didn't even bother falling asleep in her own room; she simply slipped into her pajamas, brushed her teeth and snuggled into the 'big bed', content in the knowledge that her fathers would join her within the hour. But as time wore on, as the three of them got used to the new apartment, and Molly got used to her new school, thing got better. She moved back into her own room, if only for the first few hours of the night at first, then eventually being able to get through a day or two at a time without having images of Sylar murdering her family haunt her sleep. By the time school let out in June, her nightmares were rare, and, at times, about normal childish things like going to school naked or having her teacher breathe flames on her desk and accidentally setting it on fire.

Matt and Mohinder's beds remained pressed together, however.

/Page Break/

Matt didn't think about how Mohinder slept, until he actually started sleeping in close proximity to him. He slept like- and he was sorry, but there was no nice way to put this- some sort of fungus, which clung to the nearest warm object and held on for dear life. And he left behind post-fungus ooze in the form of drool, too.

It wasn't too bad when Molly was between them, acting as a natural barrier. Then she sort of ended up half on top of him, half on top of Mohinder. But as the nightmares receded, it became more and more common to wake up with Mohinder's very annoying beeping alarm going off and a very uncomfortable wet spot somewhere on his chest. To say nothing of the fact that Mohinder somehow managed to sleep very comfortably in positions which cut the circulation to his arm and/or leg every single night.

The idea of moving back to his own room- or at least moving his bed against the opposite wall, like it had been in the old apartment- had occurred to him once or twice, but he'd dismissed it out of hand. It helped to orient him, waking up and being able to see Mohinder nearby, and it wasn't like the other man was complaining, either verbally or telepathically. No sense in rocking the boat. Besides, Molly could have a relapse, and then he'd just have to move the furniture back.

/Page Break/

The first time they ever acknowledged the fact that they were probably never going to change their sleeping arrangements was right before Thanksgiving.

The scarf had been sacrificed to the worthy cause that was Molly's school play, and the result was an old-school Doctor Who marathon and Mohinder managing to wedge himself between the two beds and falling to the floor.

The first night it happened, Mohinder had simply groaned in frustration, pushed the beds back together, and fallen back to sleep. The second night it happened, there was less groaning, and more cursing. Nights three through twelve he woke up with one foot crushed between the mattresses, clutching Matt's shoulders in an effort not to fall completely on the floor. Nights thirteen and fourteen were a non-issue, because problems at the Company kept him from sleeping anywhere, let alone at home in bed. Night fifteen, though, was the night the beds got pushed far enough apart that not only did Mohinder fall down, but Matt came tumbling after.

There was a bit of shouting (of the "Ow!", "Get off me!", "My head!" variety), some apologizing, and several minutes worth of scraping and fumbling.

"That's it!" Matt declared, as they finally managed to extradite themselves. "First thing tomorrow, we're getting a bigger bed!"

/Page Break/

After the obligatory disaster that was mattress shopping, it was only a matter of time before things began bleeding over into the rest of there lives. Mohinder set the alarm to the less irritating radio setting. Matt began moving his clothes into the room, claiming more and more closet space with each new load of laundry. He came home one night to find his dresser moved in next to Mohinder's, and a perfectly even line dividing the closet. As a thank you, and because the room was starting to get a little cluttered, Matt returned the favor the next time Mohinder had to work late and moved the work stuff into the now-empty room, converting it into a study.

Slowly, but surely, they began noticing more subtle changes as well. Like how Matt no longer suffered from pins and needles in the morning, and barely even noticed the drool. Like how on nights when Matt was tied up at work, Mohinder found himself watching the news (a channel well-know for it's favor table coverage of the city's police force) and dropping off on the couch rather than actually going to bed. Like how whenever the one was away for an extended period of time, the other found himself sprawled diagonally on the bed, feet implanted in their own territory, face pressed against the other's pillow.

And that was just the stuff that had to do with sleeping. There were other things too, like how it no longer seemed uncomfortable to go into the bathroom while the other was showering, like how the first one up would make both coffee and tea without a second thought, despite only being able to stand one of the drinks. The way Mohinder would straighten Matt's clothes and tolerate action/adventure movies if he could tell Matt really wanted to see them. The way Matt let Mohinder fuss over him, and watched animal planet documentaries without falling asleep.

It happened slowly, and realization was even slower, but by the time school let out for Christmas, each man had come to his own separate conclusion about the situation.

/Page Break/

They also quickly came to the conclusion that this wasn't something they could simply move on to without acknowledgement, planning, or, God help them, discussion. There was Molly to think about, for one thing. Not to mention themselves.

Thankfully, an ideal opportunity presented itself not too long afterwards.

Christmas was normally a bit of a catastrophe, if you could classify anything that had happened in the past year as normal; Matt had a rudimentary understanding of the American secular traditions, and Mohinder was aware of the back story of the religious traditions, but neither were entirely sure where to strike the balance.

They had ended up with a huge Christmas tree full of every sort of ornament they could beg, borrow, buy or make, which kept falling over and almost caught fire. It was a great pleasure to throw it out the window- literally- into the waiting dumpster below.

This year, however, they had a modest-size, fake Christmas tree in the corner, decorated tastefully with a string of lights and several home-made decorations. Molly's paper-plate snowflakes were taped to the windows, creating odd shadows when the lights from the building opposite them shone in.

It also afforded a perfect opportunity for the two men to be alone with each other without fear of intervention, in the form of Molly's post-candy cane crash.

"So," Matt began awkwardly, packing away the wrapping paper into a garbage bag. Mohinder looked up from where he was packing away the leftover cookies. "We're kind of married, aren't we?"

"Yes," Mohinder exhaled, with a small, relieved laugh. "I noticed."

They grinned weakly at each other, not sure how to articulate exactly what they were.

"Yeah, I mean, how did that happen?" Matt continued. "When we moved in we could barely stand each other and now…" He made a helpless sort of gesture.

"We're gay!" Mohinder blurted out. "I mean-"

"Oh thank God, I thought it might have just been me," Matt interrupted him.

Mohinder nodded. "I- we have a lot to talk about, don't we?"

"And we're going to actually have to talk about it, aren't we?"

Mohinder nodded again. "We should probably finish cleaning up first, though."

"Yeah, we sort of wrecked the place today," Matt agreed. "Better than last year, though."

"Parenthood does seem to largely be a trial and error process," Mohinder mused. "I just hope the errors don't have a lasting impact on Molly. " I hope this thing- this relationship- isn't one of them.

"It isn't," Matt assured him. "A trial maybe…"

Mohinder's laugh was less nervous this time. And after they got the apartment back under some semblance of order, after they had a long overdue conversation that lasted until the sun crept through the blinds, it wasn't nervous at all.

/Page Break/

What happened next was something private.

Suffice it to say both men were very, very glad that there was no chance of falling between the beds.