Somehow, Samuel ended up in the hospital again. And, as the dutiful boyfriend he was, it was deemed more than necessary for Erik to visit him.
As he enters the room, Sam is waiting patiently for him, with yet another novel in his hand. As always, the cover image is a woman with flowing hair looking deeply into the eyes of an insanely built half-dressed man. As the door creaks open, Sam lifts his head and cheerfully hails Erik.
Pulling up a chair, Erik surveys the hospitalized boy.
"So, how are you?"
Samuel smiles lazily, "Fine. Better than usual. It was a good day, I didn't die, though the doctors think I will. And no long lines that I have to wait in, with the slowest cashier."
Erik nods, "So, what are you in for this time?"
"Last time I was here, they noticed I slept a lot. It got into their heads that I had narcolepsy or some other twisted sleep disorder."
A smile breaks through the surface of Erik's face. "That's plausible."
Samuel smiles widely, "I told them I'm kept awake by my boyfriend's incessant phone calls."
"It's a good thing I learned not to believe you."
Sam puts the book down, and falls back against the bright pillows.
"How horrible. You shouldn't speak to me like that, when I'm in such a fragile state."
A strained chuckle, and Erik pushes up his glasses, "Aren't you tired of this by now?"
Samuel doesn't answer, waiting for his unasked question to be answered instead.
Erik looks away, frustrated, "I swear, you're the same as when we were kids. You expect things to fix themselves. I'm asking about us. Why don't you do anything about it? We both know it was more of an apology than anything, so why are we still doing this?"
With his tired eyes, Sam is laughing. And he looks away, out through the window, even though the blinds are closed.
"Really? I'm not completely sure why you haven't done anything. You're the one who pushed me off the ledge, in theory. Oh, guilt is such a filthy word. It's an excuse, and you know better to try and use pretty words on me. So, tell me, exactly what is your role in all this, if I'm just letting things go, and you keep pulling them closer until you're so wrapped up in them you can't remember who did what or what you said or even what the point of it was in the first place."
Erik looks exhausted, "I did it because I wanted to. And I wish you agreed because you wanted to. However, I know you didn't and I'm left wondering why you're still here."
"You honestly have such little faith in me? I have never done anything I didn't want to, and you of all people should know that."
At this point, Erik is left smirking again. "I'm unsure whether to be happy, or upset because I realized this so late."
Samuel waves his hand dismissively, "All seriousness aside, I love you."
Erik stops himself for a moment before answering, "You continually astound me. I don't think I'll ever be so happy to take you seriously again. You are absolutely infuriating at times, and I don't think I could stand you if you weren't."
Samuel only smiles demurely in response, deciding that next time he is placed under medical care or requires extended bed rest, he'll have a normal conversation with his boyfriend.