Back before that bastion-fucked magician's plague, I'd have never thought I'd be where I am now. Even when I was stuck in the Basquiat with Royston and his child-bride and that damned kid kept making jokes about the sickness, I didn't like him.

I certainly would never have imagined I'd like the way he tended to take even a grunt as conversation, the way he bounced and vibrated when he got excited, his sighs, his delicate shivers. Recently I've found myself doing things just to hear him sigh in irritation, and wearing the ugliest damned clothes I could get my hands on just to see him shiver. And I sure as hell would never have believed it, even if I'd gone back in time and told myself, that I'd fucking let Caius fucking Greylace snuggle to my side for warmth in the middle of the damn winter. Well, okay, late fall, but that doesn't matter, does it?

We were walking to his 'surprise' and there he was, pretty as you please, freezing his ass off in that thin-ass silk thing from Ke-Han, so he snuggles in to my side. Only, I don't really feel like pushing him off. But the way he was shivering, I had no choice. Hated it, though, the little whimper he made and the way he shivered so violently when I pulled my arm out of his grip. I could see he was trying not to pout as he stood there shaking, telling me he wasn't cold. I don't know if it was gallantry or just a ploy to get my arm back, and I really didn't—and still don't—give a flying fuck. I threw my jacket around him, keeping my arm around his shoulders too keep him warmer. He let out one of those beautiful sighs—of relief or happiness or something—and snuggled in, sliding his thin arm around my waist. I shivered, thinking that I could get used to this, his arm around my waist, those little sighs, the way his body fit just right under my arm and pressed against my side when he suddenly pulled away. He had one of those looks, like when he's fussing about my temper. Oh fuck, I thought, What'd I do this time?

"You are cold!" he chastised.

I grabbed him back to my side, holding the coat on him, keeping him from throwing it off to give back to me."No. Not cold." Just incredibly aroused, but I wasn't telling him that. It'd just make his head bigger. Though, that may not be such a bad thing, depending on the head. "We there yet?" I asked, chuckling when he told me my voice sounded funny.

When we finally got to his 'surprise'—which was a bastion-be-damned cabin that he was gonna live in 'to give me space.' Like hell that was gonna happen—we ended up having a bit of an argument. The result? I'm moving. He's coming with me. We sealed that deal with a kiss—about damn time. I didn't realize I'd been waiting so long.

I would have never in all my years imagine I'd have a very naked Caius Greylace curled against my body with his head on my naked chest and his leg thrown over mine and looking so fucking gorgeous in the moonlight that I just gotta kiss him. And, not being a man to be completely unreasonable, I did. He sighed—that little cross-dressing shit-stirrer, he was awake the entire time!—and raised up a bit to see me. I loved the little content smile on his face at that moment. He seemed so happy to be practically laying on me. I know I sure as hell was happy with the moment. But it didn't last long.

"So?" he asked, looking for all the world like a lost child, all of a sudden.

"What?" I grunted, irritated with the change of mood.

"Are we friends, or—"

"Caius, if we were friends, I wouldn't have just fucked your damn brains out." I said. Suddenly, he was shifting, getting up. What the hell had I said this time? I grabbed his wrist, determined not to let him go. "Why're you upset?" I asked in a gentler tone. It wasn't his fault I was hard as all hell—well, actually, it was, him being all naked and stuff, but that's beside the point—so I really shouldn't take it out on him. He pulled at me, trying to make me let go. I just pulled him closer, grabbing his face. "Caius, what'd I say?" I asked, leaning my forehead against his. "You know me. I don't get the emotional shit. You're gonna have to tell me, okay?"

"You said we weren't friends—"

I grunted, cutting him off. "No. We aint. I'd say—"

He pulled suddenly, angry with me for something again. I grabbed him around the waist, pulling him into my lap, holding tightly with one arm while my other hand went to his face, forcing him to look at me. "Why don't you fucking let me finish!" I growled. He settled down, watching me warily. "I was saying that I don't think that we're just friends anymo—" another jerk, bastion damn it all. I flipped him over using my body to pin him to the bed. "I don't do 'friends with benefits,' Caius, so I guess—hold still damn it and let me finish!" He was still bucking and jerking around, trying to get loose. I kissed him--hell if I know why. He resisted a bit, then moaned as I slid my tongue along his lip. He bucked again, but this time I didn't think he was trying to get away. Seemed more like he was trying to get closer. He moaned again, and I let his hands go and raised up, breaking the kiss.

"Oh," he breathed, "I get it." Ah, there it is, I thought as that content smile slipped back onto his face, replacing the frightening angry and hurt look from before. "Alcibiades, my dear, you could have just told me you wanted us to be lovers."

"What the hell do you think I was trying to tell you? You jumping all over the damn place didn't make it easy for me to make my point."

"Oh," was all he said as he grabbed me around the waist, pulling me down on top of him.

I just kissed him again, bucking a bit myself. He seemed to like the idea and opened his legs and mouth, granting me access on both fronts.

Another battle won for General fucking Alcibiades of the fucking Glendarrow.