Chiisai Kitsune presents:
„Hnggh…I feel awful."
Sonic looks it, but Shadow doesn't think so. With his cheeks flushed, his fur matted and ruffled and his eyes shining from the mild fever, Shadow rather thinks of the blue hedgehog as adorable, although he knows telling Sonic would annoy him.
"I said, don't gawk at me. I gotta look like a pincushion on a bad day…"
Sonic turns over and pulls the covers over his head, the blanket making a funny shape over his back full of quills. Shadow snorts at the futile vanity of the blue hero, since Sonic doesn't know he has already taken a picture of him while he was sleeping anyway.
Down in the kitchen, Shadow hesitates. Protocol dictates that sick persons are to be served chicken soup, but he has hardly ever cooked in his life, never mind used a stove. Usually, he would leave such mundane tasks to Tails or Amy, or whoever of his servile friends Sonic seems to keep around, but the incredibly contagious nature of Sonic's disease – a mutated strain of human flu, not dangerous, but annoying – means the walking, talking immune-system wonder that is the Ultimate Lifeform is stuck having to take care of him.
Shadow stares hard at the can of ready-made chicken soup, knowing that the two of them are going to have a problem with each other.
A crash and a string of colourful (and rather inventive) curses from downstairs lets Sonic snap awake with a gasp. Confused, he turns his head to the door just as Shadow stumbles through. At a questioning raised eye ridge from the blue hedgehog, his noodle-covered dark look-a-like tries to explain: Despite having provided the necessary heat for cooking, a Chaos Spear maybe hadn't been the best option.
Nevertheless, he holds out a steaming bowl; triumphant at last.
"It's for your own good," Shadow insists.
"It's degrading," Sonic turns his head away. He doesn't like being spoon-fed, despite having dropped the bowl twice previously. He glares. "And I think you're enjoying this, aren't you." It's not a question; Shadow smirks. "Come on. After all I've done for you here I think I deserve at least a little bit of entertainment, no…?"
He smothers the salty lips of the incapacitated hero with a kiss afterwards and Sonic hungrily leans into it, proving the blue hedgehog also wishes for entertainment very much.
"I'll get you another blanket."
"Now I'm hot."
"I'll open the window."
"Now I'm cold again."
"…I'll kill you and end your suffering."
"Please?" On the second day, a wretched-looking Sonic is lying on his back in his bed, looking up at a towering Shadow with large, fearful eyes. He is obviously trying to play the pity card, knowing that it is the only one he has left. Shadow does not seem moved by it.
"Stop doing that look, hedgehog. Despite what you may think, you're not Bambi," he says, bending down and easily removing Sonic's arms futilely trying to cover up the peach-furred chest, the blue hero's muscles weakened from the sickness.
Sonic turns his head to his side, his wrists pressed against the covers beside his head and one can see he resents his defeat.
"You'd be the guy heartless enough to shoot his mother, anyway," he mutters.
"Nothing," the blue hero replies innocently, giving another useless bucking even though it helps little against the Ultimate Lifeform and Sonic knows that doom will commence shortly anyway.
"Quit whining," Shadow starts rubbing the greenish salve which is supposed to dissolve the mucus in his lungs onto his unprotected chest. It has a sharp, stinging smell of Eucalyptus and the hero's reaction is pretty much instant.
"No! Hahahah, NO!" The ticklish hedgehog now squirms wildly underneath his caretaker and his uncoordinated flailing eventually succeeds in taking hold of Shadow's left hand which holds the tube – and squeezing it sharply. A string of the abominable cream shoots out of it and there is a noticeable, immediate silence.
"Oh…" Sonic manages.
It is a very annoyed Shadow that now has a face full of chest ointment and when he assaults Sonic again, not even his doe eyes can save him.
"Sonic, I told you. You need to keep that thermometer in your mouth without fuss or else it can't take that temperature properly, so be quiet." The black hedgehog sitting on the chair turns another page in his book, the work entitled 'Over the (H)edge – What To Do When Your Partner Drives You Crazy', pointedly ignoring the other. Sonic himself looks deeply unhappy with the covers drawn up to his chin and the hated instrument protruding from the side of his mouth where Shadow took pains to wedge it under his tongue.
"Bug Haggow, I gonk hink-"
"One more word, Sonic, and I'll be forced to measure your temperature somewhere else."
Sonic doesn't get to tell Shadow what he doesn't think but is forced to lay down again. He sends a withering glare at the other, both knowing that Shadow would actually go through with his threat and that Sonic wouldn't be pleased to have to submit to the humiliating procedure. Thusly defeated he lays back with a suppressed sigh, instead staring at the ceiling.
Sonic is willing to bet his tail that measuring the temperature doesn't take an entire hour, no matter what Shadow claims.
It's only the third day and Sonic shouldn't be out of bed yet, Shadow reminds himself. But nevertheless, this is Sonic, so the Ultimate Lifeform is currently staring at the blue hedgehog leaning in the doorway of the living room. He still doesn't look very healthy, his ragged fur, as with all Mobians, an indicator that he's still not over the virus. The scowl on his face seems to be caused by a different reason, however.
"You took my clothes," Sonic states, leveling a gaze at Shadow raising himself from the couch he's been camping out on. It's not entirely clear whether the flush on his cheeks stems only from his fever.
"Yes," Shadow replies simply, crossing his arms. "Because if I hadn't, you would've snuck out of the apartment while I was sleeping and would be outside already, getting yourself sicker."
"…not true," Sonic protests, the blue hedgehog self-consciously crossing his own arms, gloveless peach fingers digging into forearms of the same colour, as a bare, blue left foot rubs against his right calf. Both know that that is a total and utter lie, of course.
"And besides," Shadow purrs at this, "I kind of prefer you without clothes anyway…"
Sonic flushes again and this time it's very clear where it comes from.
"Mmh…don't do that," Sonic mutters in a half-hearted complaint at Shadow's hand petting him. The Ultimate Lifeform smirks, but doesn't stop. He has finally succeeded in getting some medicine down Sonic – even if it did involve some blackmail in the form of Chili Dogs and some coercion in the form of a water bucket – and the drugs have made the blue speedster drowsy enough to keep him lying down. Both hedgehogs are watching 'Mouse, M.D.', a kind of medical drama about a very bad-tempered rodent doctor, but neither is paying too much attention. Shadow just enjoys sitting next to the curled-up hedgehog, stroking Sonic's side, which he doesn't get to do often. The blue-furred hero usually refuses on the grounds of 'not being Shadow's pet' (which the Ultimate Lifeform wishes) but right now he can't fight it, too tired to make Shadow stop.
"I'm gonna get you back for that," Sonic defiantly mumbles instead, clearly declaring the battle lost, but not the war. Shadow only snorts faintly, mainly because he knows that secretly the other enjoys it when he sometimes pushes his head underneath Shadow's hand or purrs under the touch when only half-conscious anymore.
Later, when Sonic has eventually fallen asleep completely, Shadow stays sitting on the couch for quite a while with the blue hero's head on his lap before he finally picks his love up and carries him back to bed.
The couch in the living room is barely recognizable as such anymore. Hedgehog quills have torn it up every which way already and its condition has not been improved by Shadow camping out on it for the last few days, knowing that 1) sick people need their own space and 2) miserable sick, spiky hedgehogs need lots of it. Right now the black-furred slender frame of the exhausted Ultimate Lifeform is draped over the abused furniture once more, the striped hedgehog barely able to believe he is finally able to catch a bit of a break.
But of course, it's Sonic he's dealing with.
It's 77 pounds of happy hedgehog landing on top of Shadow and it's not only the couch that is rapidly developing homicidal tendencies at this point.
Shadow quirks an eye ridge and one black lid slides up for a red iris to focus on the enthusiastic hedgehog.
"The medicine has worked, then, I take it?" Shadow asks dryly, pretending the wagging tail of the blue hero kneeling above him wasn't proof enough. Sonic nods quickly.
"Yeah! Fit like a butcher's 'hog, I say it's time to partay!"
Shadow briefly considers checking the medicine ingredients for any hallucinogens, but dismisses the notion. If only behaviour like this of Sonic was caused by any external influences.
"Fine. Glad to hear it," the black hedgehog replies instead, and a part of him means it. It does make him feel a certain joy to see his partner back to his usual cheerful self, Sonic obviously over the moon that his own body is no longer feeling like a bloated, hurting hot air balloon.
"Will you let me up now to make breakfast, then?" Shadow prods him into the chest, raising an eye ridge at the toned form of the blue speedster still hovering above him, not getting off. To his slight surprise, Sonic only bends closer.
"Oh?" Shadow asks back in challenge as he notices that the blue hedgehog's grin has turned predatory. Sonic places his hands on both sides of Shadow's head, emerald eyes sparkling wickedly.
"Yeah." He grins. "'cause, you know, after half a week completely at your mercy, doing unspeakable things to me…"
"Which you brought on yourself, hedgehog, by going snowboarding when still completely drenched from Frog Forest, I may add-" Shadow tries to point out, but to no avail as Sonic merely continues:
"…I think it's time for me to 'play doctor' with you. Wouldn't you agree?"
Shadow swallows. Maybe that thermometer threat has been a bad idea after all…
Well, there you go. Short, fluffy and just a little bit of entertainment while I'm taking ages to upload the next Chapter of He Is My Master, but this one hopefully keeps you from murdering me in my sleep... :P If you read, please review? ;)