A/N: Yet another slash dragged forth by a plot bunny residing deep in the recesses of my brain. This one has been growing for quite some time now, and I've only recently gotten around to typing it.

Why do hospitals smell so…weird? It's like a bunch of lemons and pine trees got together and had an orgy with a bunch of dead people. That's just what I'd want to smell if I had to drip my life away through tubes….

Dale stood up from the hard plastic chair and stretched. Ok, so Saul wasn't dying. At least, that's what the doctors told him. What the hell did they know anyway? He hadn't seen for himself that his best friend was fine. When he saw that Saul was ok, then he'd relax.

The nurse behind the reception desk watched him from the corner of her eye. Dale had tried to sneak into Saul's room three times now, and they were threatening to kick him out if he tried again. He slumped into the seat, legs stretched out in front of him. His ear still twinged, but he forced himself to ignore it. The docs had dressed it as best they could, but it wasn't like they could re-attach it. Saul had told him he was gonna start calling him Van Gogh from now on. That had been right before Saul slumped in his seat onto Dale's lap, completely unconscious.

Dale bit his lip nervously. He was going to be fine. It was just some second degree burns…that were almost third degree along his back. Paired with the pulled groin, beating from Carol the cop, Matheson roughing him up, car chases, being hit by a car, he'd just been done. Dale had to carry him in slung across his back, seeing as Red was nearly out himself, and there was no way Saul's grandmother could help them. She hadn't even stayed; just dropped them off and left with the hurried explanation of not wanting to miss bingo at the nursing home.

Saul couldn't make up his mind which was worse, being awake or being knocked out on pain killers. When he was conscious, he was alone. And Dale was just beyond the door, except he couldn't get up and walk out. Besides his back aching like a bitch, whatever meds the nurse had hooked him up with had left everything fuzzy, and he didn't quite trust his legs. Although for all he knew, they weren't even attached anymore, and were at that very moment in a cooler on their way to some seedy black market.

Shuddering at that thought, he reached for his sheet, just to check that he still had legs, but his hand didn't seem to be getting any closer to the sheet. In fact, it was waving slightly, at least to him, and he giggled at the sight. What the hell had they put him on? It was awesome! "Dale, we gotta get our hands on this shit! We'll make gazillions!" Nobody answered him. "Dale?" Oh. Dale wasn't there, he was still by himself. He wondered if Dale was worried about him, and had his ear all better. He'd looked worried when he'd last seen him, before everything went black. Maybe he was still here? Waiting for him to get better. Maybe he had a present for him! That'd be cool, as long as it was something good, Saul decided, rolling gingerly onto his side.

"Mr. Denton?" the nurse, a young, pretty brunette gently tapped Dale on the shoulder. He jerked his head up, starling her by accident. "Yeah?" "You can go see your friend now. But try not to excite him; he's got to lay still." What, did they think he was going to take Saul out rock climbing and ball room dancing? He agreed and turned his back on her, walking down the hall and trying not to limp. The door hushed open and closed as he crept in.

"Saul? How ya feelin' man?" Saul was curled on his side, his back to Dale, the cheap hospital gown gaping open and showing the bandages wrapped around his spine. The thin blanket was bunched around his waist, giving him some modicum of modesty. An IV dripped steadily into his arm. "Saul?" A soft groan issued from the long haired brunette, and he rolled over stiffly, drawing his breath in a sharp hiss. "Dale?" His eyes crossed as he tried to focus blearily on him. "Dale! Whas up?" Obviously it was morphine in the IV bag, and Saul was enjoying the effects. "Nothing. You?" Dale pulled up a chair, the twin of those in the waiting room. "Man, I got a sponge bath! And look," Saul lifted up a small Styrofoam cup full of wiggling red cubes, "Jell-O cubes! The red kind! Hey, y'think you could see if I still got my legs?" Oh yeah, definitely on morphine, coupled with the weed that's perpetually in his system…he's not feeling anything, Dale thought, but lifted the sheet the slightest bit and affirmed that Saul still had both his legs.

"That's great, sponge bath and jell-o cubes," Dale helped himself to one of the cubes, trying to eat it without a spoon and nearly dropping it. "When're they going to let you out?" "Huh?" Saul looked up from spooning his dessert into his mouth, his expression more confused than usual. "When will they let you out of the hospital?" Dale asked again, speaking slowly and clearly, like he would to a two year old. "Oh. Umm…shit, I dunno. The nurse told me, and I don't remember," he laughed like it was the funniest thing ever to not remember something, until tears stood out in his eyes and he doubled over, clutching his ribs and spilling his jell-o in his lap. But that just made the burns hurt, despite the pain medication, and he lay back with a whimper. Dale winced in sympathy, and laid a comforting hand on his shoulder. Saul lay his cheek against his hand, sighing.

"Hey Dale?"


"Your place is pretty much trashed right?"

"Probably. Why?"

"And Red's wife is gonna be out of jail soon, so they'll be all busy and shit, y'know?"

Dale grimaced, really not wanting to think about Red's sex life, even if they were friends now. "Yeah? What about it?" "You wanna maybe, move into my place? Since yours is all trashed?" Saul rolled his eyes up to look at Dale. "You got room?" "Somewhere," Saul moaned. "Damn, I think the meds're wearing off. It hurts everywhere." His eyes squeezed shut as he rode out another tremor of pain.

They must have like sonar, or mind reading power or something, Dale thought as a nurse came in right away. She switched out the IV bags, and he watched as Saul relaxed one muscle at a time, and the dopey grin slid back onto his face. The nurse smiled shyly at them both, her eyes flicking to his hand on Saul's shoulder, and Saul's cheek on his hand, practically nuzzling him. She backed out of the room. Dale frowned after her, "What the hell was with her?" "She gave me my sponge bath," Saul mumbled, his lips moving against the back of Dale's hand. "Take it you and her chatted?" Saul struggled to sit up, and grinned at Dale. "Way to sound totally jealous Dale." Dale raised an eye brow, "Rrriiiight."

"You're jealous. But you don't gotta be jealous, or go all crazy defendin' my honor. You're my BFFF," Saul threw his arms awkwardly around Dale's neck, hugging him. Dale was jerked over the bed, cold metal bed frame digging into his ribs. "Saul, get off me!" Saul snored in response, the morphine and other pain meds wrapping him in a warm fuzzy blanket and pulling him under. He snuggled against Dale, who had to force himself not to shove the other man off him. Dale stretched out his leg, hooking an ankle around the leg to pull it closer so he would try and sit down and untangle himself. He had almost gotten it when Saul cracked open his eyes and blinked at him. "Dale?" "Just sitting down. Chill, I'm not going 'til they kick me out." "Damn right you're not," Saul said sleepily. He yawned wide enough that Dale could hear his jaw crack. He slid down the bed once more, letting out another soft whimper as the hospital gown rubbed against his back where the bandages didn't cover.

The plastic chair creaked ominously, but held as Dale sat back in it, sighing in relief. Saul had let go of his neck, but was still holding onto his arm. His hair fluttered in front of his face as he breathed, clean for once. He actually smelled good too, not like weed and slushies. Nor did he smell like the nasty cleaning products. The nurse had used something that was sweet, and musky, but not too flowery. It was nice, sort of, in a Bed, Bath, and Beyond way. Saul twitched in his sleep, obviously dreaming. He reminded Dale of a dog running while it slept, chasing dream squirrels or whatever. Saul tightened his grip on Dale's arm, and Dale smoothed his hand down Saul's hair, trying to calm him. Surprisingly, it worked, and Saul fell deeper asleep. After shifting around so he could be comfortable despite his arm nearly being wrenched from its socket, Dale leaned back in the chair and joined him.

The nurse, when she peeked in to check on Saul, let him stay there.

A/N: so? What d'you think? Good? I know, it was on the fluffy and short side, but that's just how it works. Next chapter will be longer, promise.