I never said I'm done with this story, did I? :p

After posting 'Misunderstanding' on LJ and getting another ton of reviews, I found the inspiration for the Sequel. Finally. Took me long enough. :D

For those who haven't read it yet, maybe you should, to understand this Sequel here.

Summary: It's about a year after that fateful evening, when Cody almost threw everything away they ever had over a silly misunderstanding. They've grown stronger now, though still struggling and fighting a lot, and after a day that could not have gone any worse for Cody, Randy knows it is finally time.

Warning: Slash, Cursing and lots of Fluff

Disclaimer: I only own the idea and the muses (though they aren't much help as of late)

You know those days when just about everything goes wrong? When something completely shitty happens and you think it can't get any worse, but yet it does?

This was what Cody had been going through his day. From waking up until coming back home from work, he had had nothing but a disastrous day.

It started with his toothbrush falling into the toilet when Randy had startled him by wrapping his hands around his waist from behind this morning. Then they had gotten into a completely silly fight, the topic of which he had already forgotten again. When he had gotten ready for his workout, his shoelace had decided to tear. Gym had been awfully crowded today and as he had retreated to the only free leg-trainer available, his gym-shorts had torn at the most inappropriate part possible, his crotch.

During the radio-interview he had been doing afterwards, the broadcaster had constantly bugged him because of his slight lisp until he had just snapped and called the interview off. Ten minutes later, he had gotten a call from Vince's personal assistant, demanding that he'd show up at his office upcoming Tuesday before the Smackdown taping, and had instantly warned him about how furious Vince had been when the broadcaster had called to complain about HIS rude behavior.

And just when he had thought it could not get any worse, his car had broken down 3 miles away from home. When he had called Randy to pick him up, his older lover had said he was in the middle of a phone-conversation with creative and it would take at least an hour for him to be finished. He had even gone so far as to suggest Cody to just WALK the 3 miles home.

And he had done just that. On his way, feet aching and shoulder sore from carrying his gym-bag all the fucking way, it had started to rain and when he had finally gotten back to their house, he was freezing cold, sneezing, coughing, and in no mood to do anything but to plop down on their bed and sleep.

What he had not expected were Ted and John being over to visit. The last thing he needed at that moment. Well, asides from Randy behaving like a complete jerk, not only ignoring the state he was in but also treating him like it had all been his own fault.

"You should've checked the tank before driving off this morning." Yepp, that had been the sentence he had been welcomed home with… and god, now he just wanted to punch his lovers face in.

If he had had the energy, he would have surely snapped then, but he had been barely able to lift his foot off the floor and kick Randy in the shin before stomping upstairs to their bedroom and slamming the door behind him… and Randy did not even follow.

For over an hour he lay on their bed, stripped off his dripping clothes and curled up into a ball underneath the warming, comforting blankets, face buried into the soft pillow on his side of the bed, fighting the urge to scream, silent tears falling down his red, strained cheeks.

He could hear them chattering downstairs, laughter filling the house while they rummaged through the living room, doing whatever the hell they were doing, and it only fueled his frustration even more. 'Screw them' was not the only thing going through his mind and by far not the worst. Days like this were what made him wonder why he even still kept up with Randy.

But the answer was easy: He loved him, all of him, with all his kinks, faults and tempers. Damn that guy for being what his heart needed, what his heart truly ever wanted.

Another thirty minutes later and he still had not managed to fall asleep, the frustration, anger and disappointment cursing through him keeping him from getting some much needed rest. It did not help that he was still shivering from the coldness outside, his skin prickling and goosebumps all over his body. He was sure he would get a cold. Who wouldn't after walking 3 miles in the pouring rain?

He could hear footsteps outside, the stairs creaking under the weight of someone making his way up, and only a minute later the door slowly opened, his lover peaking his head inside with an arched brow and that oh so fucking irresistible smirk on his lips. "Babe… You awake?"

He only managed a cranky huff as he turned his head to the other side of the room, not wanting to look Randy in the eyes in fear of getting weak again.

"We've prepared dinner. Come down and have some with us, please?" Randy's voice sounded remorseful, regretful even, the soft brush of his fingertips against the bare skin of Cody's neck making the younger man shiver even more, a whoosh of breath leaving his lips as his lids fluttered shut.

"Codes?" God damn Randy for owning his heart.

"I'm not hungry." It was muffled through the pillow his face was currently pressed into, hands on either side of his head digging into the soft, white cotton sheets as he willed himself not to sniffle. He was not only mad with the older man, but mainly disappointed in the obvious disinterest his lover showed in him.

"I'm sorry, babe. I shouldn't have been so rude earlier. I should've picked you up." Randy let his hand brush over his neck again, up to his cheek; gently caressing the younger mans damp skin as he leaned down to whisper in his ear. "I'll make it up to you, tonight. Hmmm? What do you say?"

Cody turned again, shaking his head vigorously as he forced his eyes open to stare back at the elder man, lips drawn into a deep frown as he pushed him away. "I'm not in the mood… Just leave me alone." He had had it. Randy's arrogance and his brainless comment had been the last straw for him, anger taking over and replacing the frustration and disappointment from earlier. "Eat your damn dinner alone, with your friends. You obviously care about them more than about me anyways."

His lisp shined through again, only making him the more angry, the more furious as he hated that his little flaw showed up whenever he raised his voice like this. He hated it because it made him feel weak, and he WAS NOT weak.

Randy's face fell immediately at his young lovers outburst, sparkling grays losing their shimmer and face falling into a frowning expression as he stared at Cody, hands dropping back into his lap as he sat next to him. "But… we made that dinner for all four of us."

"They're still here, aren't they?" It was a statement rather than a question and as soon as Randy nodded his head, Cody slumped back down into the soft sheets and shook his head again. "Then eat with them. I'm not interested."

Randy sighed, raking a hand through his hair before slowly getting up from their bed in order to retreat, but then decided against it. This was not how he had planned the evening, and he wanted to go through with it whatever it took. Even if it meant to apologize, deeply and sincerely. Something Randy was not really a pro at.

Crawling over until he lay flat against his young lover, chest pressed to Cody's back, he could instantly feel the brunette tensing up, but raised his arm anyways to wrap it securely around his young lover's waist. Placing a sweet kiss right behind Cody's ear, he whispered a low "Sorry" again before leaning over to –at least- halfway look into the young mans eyes.

"Baby, look at me, please!"

Reluctantly, slowly, Cody turned onto his back, lips curled up into a pout, eyes blood-shot and puffy, body completely tense as he stared back at the older man.

"I'm really sorry. I shouldn't have let you walk home in the pouring rain today and I shouldn't have bitched at you when you came back. Instead, I should have comforted you. I know." He tried reading Cody's expressions for any signs of forgiveness, but so far, he only found an even deeper frown.

"I've been a jerk today." Now, that brought a reaction out of the younger man, head shaking slowly from left to right. "The past few days?" Again, Cody shook his head, lips twitching up into a small smirk. "Those past weeks?" Cody nodded; lips showing that oh so beautiful smile of his, but only for an instant before he turned back to his frowning expression.

Randy raked a hand over his face, sighing out and quickly thinking over how he had treated his lover those past weeks, coming to the conclusion that Cody was right. He truly had been a jerk for a while now already, ignoring his lover on more than just one occasion, spending more time with his friends or even with the TV than with the younger man.

"Baby, I'm sorry. I know it's only a word, but I truly am. Please… Please come downstairs and have dinner with us. And after that I send those two goofballs away and we'll do whatever YOU want us to do. And then… then you can punish me for being such an idiot and reminding me to never, ever be such a jerk towards you again." His face was buried in the crook of Cody's neck by now, inhaling the sweet scent of the younger man mingling with the fine sheen of sweat and salty rain, lips slowly worshipping the shivering skin as he waited for his lover's decision. "Please?"

He could feel Cody's body finally relax into his embrace, the younger man letting go of a long, drawn out sigh as he stared at the ceiling, hand slowly reaching out to brush his fingertips over Randy's thigh. "Okay." He still was mad at the older man, still felt the urge to just slap him and yell at him, but the majority of his frustration was gone now. And in all honesty, the promise of punishing Randy however he wanted to, had him change his opinion in less than a nano-second.

After peppering Cody's face with kisses, not leaving out a single part, giving his smooth, full lips an extra special treatment, Randy got off the bed and pulled his lover up with him. He could not help but stare as he caught a glimpse at the bare torso of the young man, mouth automatically watering as he took a deep breath to control himself. "You get dressed and then come downstairs, okay? I'll tell Cena and Ted that they're dismissed as soon as dinner's over."

He had to force his eyes up again to face Cody, smiling as the younger man nodded and wiped the last strays of tears furiously away from his cheeks, sending him a smile of his own in return.

Not able to resist, Randy leaned down another time to brush his lips against those sinful pinks of the younger man, murmuring a warm "I love you" against them before retreating out of their bedroom and leaving Cody alone to get dressed and ready for dinner.

It was another thing he hated about the older man, the power he had over him, the spell he obviously held over him. He could never stay mad at him for long, Randy always finding a way back inside his heart, may it be with some loving words or a few caring gestures. It was not fair, though he knew he had the same affect on the older man, too. Maybe Ted had been right and they were really made for each other.

He took his time getting dressed, still feeling as though he might be getting sick any time, skin still damp and muscles already sore. He was far away from being hungry, but decided to at least eat a small portion in order to prevent his stomach from any pains during the night… and to please Randy.

With that thought in mind and a small smile on his lips –despite their earlier argument-, he headed out of their bedroom and down the stairs, only to stop dead in his tracks in the middle of the staircase. Rubbing his eyes in disbelief, he was sure that he must have been dreaming.

The living room was dimmed in a small, warm light, candles neatly decorating the cupboards and sideboards as well as their couch table. Their was a vase full of pink roses on it as well, the couch pushed aside and instead replaced by two chairs from their kitchen on either side of the table.

Ted was standing at the bottom of the stairs, neatly styled in a white button-up shirt and black dress pants with a napkin slung over his arm, obviously waiting for him.

"Mister Runnels. May I show you your place?" Despite his utter confusion and with an arched brow, Cody nodded his head and made the last strides down the stairs before the blond gently placed a hand on his lower back to lead the way over to the table. "Ted… what is… I mean…"

He did not get to finish the question, as Ted interrupted him with a wide smile, pulling out the chair for him and motioning for him to sit down. "Mister Orton will join you in a second. The chef is still busy with the soup. Can I offer you a drink?"

This was too much to register all at once, Cody's brows furrowing in confusion as his lips formed a suspicious frown, words forming in his brain, but not wanting to make it past his lips as he incredulously stared at his blond friend.


At the mention of his nickname though, the young man slowly recovered, scanning his best friends features closely before shaking his head and at least managing a choked out "Uhmm… no."

Ted seemed okay with that answer, though slightly taken aback, hesitantly nodding before turning around to make a beeline for the kitchen.

"Ted… Wait! What the hell is this all about?"

Either the blond had not heard him or had chosen to ignore the question, as he did not turn back, did not even budge at the mention of his name, leaving Cody even more confused and slightly frustrated by the lack of explanations.

He waited for what seemed like an eternity, eyes glued to the kitchen-door as if it might magically open just by staring hard enough at it, the frown long gone and replaced by a pout of his own while he tapped his fingers onto the wooden-surface of their table. Everyone who knew him well enough was able to figure that he was pissed but also curious on what was going on, a sigh of defeat escaping him as he forced his eyes away from the kitchen to scan the room once again.

And he could not stop the small smile forming on his lips as he took it all in again. Either Randy was really sorry or… well… yes, he probably was really sorry. Why else would he do something like this? He obviously wanted to 'buy himself free' once again. Something he so often did before whenever he got the younger man pissed.

Randy was not good with words, never had been and never would, instead he let actions speak, thinking that, the more money he spent on Cody, the more he would show him how sorry he was. However, that was far away from being the case. The money did not matter to Cody and never had. What mattered the most was that Randy actually DID something to prove him how much he wanted him to forgive. Tonight was no different. Though, tonight there did not seem to be any money in play, not yet at least.

A few felt hours later –actually, it had only been a few minutes-, the kitchen-door finally opened again and his partner stepped outside, the man he had loved for so many years now, the man he had shared everything with over the past four years. His former mentor, his former friend, his soul mate and hopefully, one day, his future husband.

"Hey, handsome. Sorry it took me so long, but John…" With each step Randy took towards his younger lover, his voice grew lower until it finally faded off altogether when seeing the expression on Cody's face, one he knew all too well.

Sighing heavily, he made the last few feet towards the table, stopping right in front of a stone-faced, frustrated, silent young man who had followed his every movement with hard, blank eyes. "I'm sorry, babe. Really… I just needed to make sure John wouldn't burn the kitchen… or him and Ted wouldn't start screwing on our counter instead of taking care of dinner, ya know… and…"

His ramblings, however, fell on deaf ears as Cody had long gotten lost in those beautiful stormy grays, something he so often managed to do without any intentions at all, at all the wrong moments… and the right ones, too.


"Hmmm?" He was still transfixed in the sincerity and the deep truth not of Randy's words, but of Randy's eyes, dreamily staring, smile back in place as Randy chuckled lowly and shook his head before leaning down to brush his lips against Cody's forehead.

"How about we just enjoy the evening and forget about today?" It was worth a try. He knew it. It would not be the first time that Cody got so lost in his dreams that he forgot about a fight or an argument.

"Not before you tell me what this is all about."

Well, damn it. No chance today, obviously. Cody was now glaring at him again, brow arched and lips tightly pressed together in a frown as he took a step back and sighed.

"I just… well… I didn't treat you exactly right today… and those past days. Just thought it would show you that I still care. HOW MUCH I still care." It was only partly the truth and –with his hands almost nervously fidgeting with the hem of his shirt and his shoulders shrugging-, he just hoped that it was a good enough explanation for the young man to buy.

Cody's eyes scanned his face for a long time, searching it for any hints of lie, for any signs of insincerity, but he gave up again when he remembered what he had gone through that day. He just did not have the energy to argue over it, to fight or discuss, just deciding that going with whatever Randy said would be the best, for now.

Nodding his head, he let a small smile grace his lips again. "Okay."

The relieved sigh emitting from Randy's lips should have been enough indignation that there was indeed more behind it, but he did not pressure it, not now, not today, just wanting to enjoy the evening and the –for once- caring treatment as long as it lasted. Who knew when he would get something like that again without begging and whining.

Taking his own seat, Randy's eyes stayed fixed on his younger lover, smile widening with each passing second he took in Cody's features. He loved that boy with all his heart, with everything he had, even though they had faced a break-up more than once already.

It was not surprising at all, with both their tempers, that they fought more regularly than other couples, harder, more passionate, louder. However, they also made up harder than any other couple, with more desire flashing and more need and want than others could even imagine. It was just the way they were, and in all honesty, Randy did not want it any other way. No one could ever come close to what he felt for Cody. He not only needed him to breath, to live, he also needed him to feel whole.

And he was quite sure that the young man felt the same.

While Randy had grown softer over the past years, more emotional, less cold, less immature, Cody had grown stronger, more confident. Not TOO confident by any means, but while he had been insecure, unsure and emotionally unstable, he was now confident in who he was and what he wanted. Randy. And he also KNEW that Randy wanted him, only him.

Gone were the times when he feared competition in almost any woman or man who looked at Randy for longer than a split second, he now just smirked at them in the knowledge that Randy was all his and his alone.

It had taken some time for Randy to assure the younger man of his undivided love, but they had gotten there eventually, and Randy would make sure that after tonight even the last single doubt was going to vanish into thin air.

Before either of them could say anything –that was IF they had known what to say anyways-, Ted came slowly striding into the living room, plate in his hand filled with two glasses and what looked to be a bottle of wine.

"Gentleman." He nodded his head to them as he placed the two glasses on the table and opened up the bottle, the seriousness of his features and in his tone almost enough to make Cody burst out in laughter as he tried to keep himself under control.

"The appetizer will be served in a few minutes. Can I bring the two of you anything else?"

While Cody just blinked at him, suppressing a chuckle that wanted to escape so very badly, Randy just shook his head, smirk firmly in place on his now rather relaxed features.

Nodding at Randy's silent answer, Ted retreated again, but not before pushing the start-button on their stereo-system on his way out. The room filling with the soft sounds of romantic music, Cody's surprise rose even higher, brows furrowing in confusion as he stared at his older lover in suspicion.

And Randy just smirked at him -that damn smirk that at times drove him nuts and at other times made him melt with resistance-, before taking a rather cautious sip pf his wine. "Hmmm…" The soft moan drowned out the slow music playing in the background, going straight to Cody's groin and making it twitch as his eyes stared disbelievingly at the older man.

"Cheers, babe! To us and to a night full of surprises!"

He really had no words for that, his brain trying to figure out not only what this was all about, but also what Randy was talking about, blinking several times while racing his own glass in a trance.

Both simultaneously sipping at their glass, Randy smiled widely at the realization that his plan was obviously working out.

"So, how was your interview today?"

Cody only shrugged at the question, his body slowly relaxing as he took another sip from the truly delicious wine, mumbling something incoherently into his glass.

Suspiciously arching a brow, Randy let his arm reach out towards his younger lover, placing his warm palm over the back of Cody's hand and asking again. "How did it go?"

"You really wanna know?" Their was a slight anger in the younger mans voice, eyes gleaming with something akin to disbelief as he stared at Randy, brow raising when the other nodded. "Why? You didn't seem to care before."

Well, he did deserve that, he thought, sighing slightly as he looked down at his glass before glancing back up at his young lover with a sheepish smile. "Well, I realized that we barely talk anymore about…" He shrugged again, fidgeting to find the right words to say as he felt his cheeks slightly blush. As if Randy Orton would ever do such a girly thing. "We barely talk anymore at all. Just thought… You know I do care. I just often fail to show you."

Cody stared at him for a few seconds, apparently searching the else so cold, icy eyes for sincerity and warmth, finding it hard NOT to believe those kind words. Nodding his head, he shrugged again, taking another swig of the red pearls before sighing. "That guy had the nerves to bug me because… well… because of my lisp. So…" He could see the instant change in Randy's body language, the older man tensing up in anger at the story, at the interviewer as he listened on very, very closely. "…So I cut off the interview and stormed out. Vince was not really amused, but…"

"…But you don't care since you know it was the right thing to do." It was not a question, but a statement, Cody's eyes lighting up and his smile widening as Randy automatically finished his thoughts for him. When did that man learn to read him like an open book? When did he learn so many things about him that he always knew how to lighten his mood?

"That guy's probably been just a huge fucktard with a pretty small dick, picking on you only cause he was jealous of your incredibly self-confidence. Heck, if he doesn't even realize how fucking hot that small lisp of yours is… How it turns me on all the time."

He squeezed Cody's hand tightly, never once faltering from his intense gaze as he saw his younger lover blush despite smirking.

Damn bastard managed to get to him again. "Well…" Cody just couldn't help it, slightly chuckling as he shook his head at the way Randy once again had managed to not only turn the talk around, but also the complete atmosphere, suddenly feeling all his anger from earlier completely disappearing. "You're a goof, you know?"

"Yeah, but I'm your goof… and you can't deny that I'm right about everything I just said."

God, that cockiness. He so often just wanted to smack it right of Randy's face. However, there were also times, times like now, that he just could not refuse it, could not get enough of it. "Oh yeah? So… I turn you on, huh?"

"All the fucking time, yeah."

It felt like one of their first dates again, Randy trying to charm him into his pants while Cody played all coy and shy, neither of them ready to give up to the other. And god, that fucking low, rumbling whisper still managed to send chills down Cody's spine even after all those damn years.

"Even in the morning when I've morning-breath, or am all grumpy and violent? Or on my bitchy days? How about when I tell you, how much of an ass you are and kick you out? That also turns you on?"

"Shit, yes. You get me all riled up, no matter what you do or say."

The smile on Cody's lips lightened the whole interior, his Adams-Apple bopping up and down in a hard swallow while their eyes stayed locked, staring at each other with pure longing and sheer love… until the kitchen-door flew open and Ted decided to ruin their little moment.

Marching inside, eyes glued to the tray he was carrying, trying not to spill any of the soup, Ted did not even realize his bad timing at first. Only when Randy's feral growl reached his ears, he looked up for an instant, meeting the cold, icy glare of his former mentor and now friend.

"Uhmmm… Sorry if I… well… interrupt anything, but… the soup's ready and all." Standing in front of them rather awkwardly, scratching the back of his head with his free hand while balancing the tray in the other, Ted had the same sheepish expression on his face as he had when walking in on them kissing for the very first time. Shit, he even felt exactly like back then.

Swallowing down, he decided it would be best for him to just serve the appetizer and hurry back out again. He placed their plates in front of them quickly, as quickly as possible without spilling anything, and then nodded his head, tiniest of smiles on his lips as he chewed them in.

"Enjoy the soup. John will have the main-course ready in a bit." And as quickly as he had marched in, he was gone again, letting go of a whoosh of breath once he finally slammed the kitchen-door shut behind him.

It was quiet for a while, a minute, maybe two, before finally a low, amused chuckle broke through the silence, Cody's eyes sparkling back at his older lover as he shook his head. "He always has a shitty timing."

Despite being pissed that Ted had chosen a rather bad time to bring their appetizer, Randy could not help but grin at the younger man. His chuckle always had that affect on him, always infected him, mood swinging over once again as he, too, let go of an amused rumble. "He'll probably never learn."

They shared the meal in silence, only broken by the occasional sigh of content and moan of pleasure –who would have know that John could actually cook that well. Randy's hand was still covering the younger man's in the middle of the table, never once pulling away, squeezing ever so often only to make Cody look up from his plate and get lost in deep, warm grays.

When it was time for the main-course, this time, Ted first stuck his head out of the kitchen to investigate, making sure he would not ruin some kind of magic moment once again.

It tasted good, magnificently good even. However, to Cody it was more important that he was sharing that meal with Randy, in their house, their home, all by themselves in the most romantic scenery he had witnessed in ages. He was still sure that something was up, but he did not push it anymore, just enjoying the certainly unique and special night with his lover.

The only thing that made the meal even worth it for Randy was the content smile on his young lover's beautiful features. The sparkle in his eyes and the slight blush on his cheeks whenever their gazes met. It was perfection in his opinion. The food could taste like a pile of shitload as long as Cody was there and kept him grounded with his stunning presence.

Instead of silence, the air was soon filled with lusty, hazy rumbling again, the two of them falling back into a playful yet seductive fight of words while they ate. Forks were pointed at each other's noses, winks were flying back and forth, smirks replacing their smiles from earlier and feet rubbing against the other's thighs.

Evenings like those had become rare, very rare and while Randy blamed his own selfishness for it, Cody never once doubted the older man's good intentions and his warm heart. In his opinion it was all a mix of bad timing, exhaustion and falling into some kind of routine over the years, the two of them barely seeing each other once a week if not only once every two weeks due to their different schedules and hectic lifestyle.

The few days they had together, they usually spent lazily in bed, or not so lazily, trying to make up for lost time, physically and emotionally, which often wore them out even more so.

It was very rare that relationships like theirs lasted that long, overcame all odds, but –despite many fights and break-ups that barely ever lasted for a week-, their love for each other seemed to grow even stronger with each passing day.

Main-course long finished, Randy's gaze flicked over to the kitchen-door repeatedly now, as if it would help to get Ted in there quicker. His behavior had changed as soon as Cody had dropped the fork down onto his empty plate, signaling that he was done, his stomach full. Even when the younger brunette had playfully rubbed his abs, whining –ever so jokingly- that he 'had surely gained 4 pounds now and that dinner had ruined his dashing looks', Randy had barely reacted.

He seemed nervous now, less relaxed, smile gone from his handsome features and eyes constantly trying to prey themselves free from Cody's growing curiosity. Until he could not take it anymore and suddenly jumped out of his seat, startling the younger man to the core.

"I better check on them."

Quickly glancing over at his frowning lover, Randy was trying to come up with something unsuspicious, something that would lower Cody's already curious nature, would work as a good excuse for his sudden outburst.

"Don't want them to fuck on our precious counter, you know… and completely forget about our dessert."

He winked at the smaller man, unsure if it had worked –knowing Cody, it had not- before retreating quickly towards the kitchen. Practically storming inside, door falling shut behind him, he let go of the breath he had been holding ever since speaking those last words, unaware of the two matching blue sets of eyes staring at him with arched brows as he leaned against the door.

"Fuck." It was muttered under his breath, more so to himself than to anyone else, as he shook his head before finally raising it up to meet a dimpled grin and a curious frown.

"Did something go wrong already?" It was Ted breaking the silence first, as he stared at the older man in worry, brows furrowed and lips drawn together in a frown from where he was leaning against the counter.

John was still preparing the cake for them, small but enough for the plan to process, enough for the case it was meant for, his head turned to glance at his long-term best friend. "Yeah… Did ya say something wrong again? Blown it?"

"No… No… I just… I…" He raked a shaky hand over his face, breathing ragged as he slumped down against the door, mumbling something incoherently, inaudible.

And Cena just grinned. "You're not getting cold feet, Orton, are ya?"

He was rewarded with a cold glare, one that would have made everyone else freeze and instantly retreat, but not John. Not his best friend, who just started chuckling, in return getting a defeated sigh out of the heavily tattooed male.

"Yeah, and… What if I am?" It was true after all. The only reason he had jumped up and ran had been his nerves, the few that were still left. He needed to get his composure back, needed to rethink his whole plan, reassure himself that it was indeed a good idea.

"Randal Keith Orton!" It was Ted's turn to speak. Despite being slightly amused by his friend's sudden nausea, his expressions were those of seriousness, one brow arched as he walked over to the heavily breathing brunette to swat his chest, hard. "How many times do we have to tell you that this is going to work, you moron?"

An icy glare was shot into his direction, one he chose to ignore, as he knew it was only the older mans way to show he was right. "Damn it, Cody loves you with all he's got. I know it, John knows it, and YOU definitely know it, too. You said it yourself when Cody found out it's meant for him… how happy he was, how his eyes started to sparkle. He wants this as much as you do."

John listened to Ted's explanations, only butting in with a "Yeah" or "Right" ever so often to prove the blonde's points right.

"And don't start with that whole 'Things have changed' shit again. We've already heard it often enough. Yes, things really have changed, but you two proved often enough that you can overcome all odds. Hell, you two are miserable without each other. Even if it's only for a day. That alone shows that this is meant to be."

"Not to forget that every man who's able to be with you for four years… well, let's just say that the boy is worth it. Even though he must be insane wanting to be with you."

Now it was John's turn to receive the icy eyes, though the oldest was already so used to it that he just shrugged it off and sent a dimpled grin into Randy's direction. "Face it, Orton. He's the one… and if you don't do it now… then when? The evening's perfect, the time's perfect. He's not expecting it today. Go back in there and swipe him off his feet, man!"

"You know we're right, Randy… Now, come on. I'll bring the cake out in a minute." Ted was practically shoving on him, cocky smile on his lips assuring Randy enough that it WAS the right thing to do. Well, that and the speech they had given him. It had been exactly what he had needed.

Taking a long, deep breathe and letting it go again in a whoosh, he straightened his shoulders before nodding his head towards his friends, taking Ted in a quick, friendly hug and then he turned around, steadying his nerves one more time before opening the door.

Wide, cerulean eyes stared at him curiously as he made his way back into the living-room and sat down in his chair again, as if nothing ever happened, though the slight blush of embarrassment on his cheeks told otherwise. "Sorry… Just had to check in on them. Never know what they're up to."

It was mumbled, voice with a pang of guilt and eyes clouded with shame as he avoided eye contact with his younger lover, tongue nervously wetting his lips as he instantly took hold of his glass of whine.

While he had sat there, left alone, Cody had gone through all kind of different emotions. Starting with curiosity over anger over frustration over guilt. And it all had ended in sadness. Somehow, and he had no idea why.

"Are you okay?" That was one of many, many questions he had wanted to ask, he had thought about during the seemingly endless time Randy had been in the kitchen, and his hand immediately reached out to squeeze the older mans wrist. Eyes blown over with blue worry and brows furrowed in a frown.

Slowly raising his head and lifting his gaze from the red liquid in his hand, Randy's eyes met those deep, warm blues, filled with love, with concern, worry edged all over the younger mans face. Worry instead of anger as he had expected to be greeted with. And he instantly felt his lips twitch up into a soft smile, nodding his head as he stammered out a quick, almost breathless "Yeah… yeah… everything okay."

Just then, the door to the kitchen opened again, Ted coming out with two plates of chocolate-cake and a grin gracing his features as he locked eyes with the older man. "Monsieur's, dessert is served. Bon appetite." As quickly as he had walked in, placing the plates in front of them, as quickly he was gone again, knowing that if he stayed longer than needed, he would probably give away the plan.

Cody's gaze dropped to the plate in front of him, mouth watering at the sight of that huge piece of chocolate-cake –his favorite ever- and his smile widening. Feeling Randy's palm envelop his own again, he looked back up only to be met with a sea of loving gray.

"Good appetite." Randy's eyes were transfixed at his lovers clearly happy features as he spoke the words, squeezing the younger mans hand slightly only to gain an even wider smile from him as he nodded his head and started digging into the cake as if he was starving. Yepp, his boy loved his chocolate, probably even more than him, but he could live with that… very easily, especially tonight.

He had not even touched his own piece of cake when Cody suddenly went very quiet, the moans of content dying as his fork hit something hard inside the calorie-bomb. His nerves fluttered, teeth worrying his lips until he tasted a slight sheen of blood, muscles tensing in his jaw and forehead starting to transpire as he stared at the young man in hope.

Cody digged further with his fork until something red caught his eye, something looking a lot like a velvety box. "What's that?" His fork had already been dropped as his fingers fought to pull the tiny item out from its surroundings and held it up in front of his own face.

Surely Cody already had to have a suspicion what it was, right? "Dunno… maybe you should open it?" And of course, Randy fucking knew, his voice trembling to the same extend his hands were shaking, Adams-Apple bopping as he swallowed hard.

The click of the small box was the only sound heard in the big room, Cody's eyes transfixed on the little item in his hand while Randy practically stared at him, mesmerized, angsty, scared to get a reaction he would not be able to handle.

The young brunette slowly opened the red velvet, taking in a chest-heaving breathe as he raised the upper half, eyes widening with each passing second as he seemed to recognize what lay inside. An expression of shock… or was it excitement?… or confusion? –Randy did not know- crossed his face as his lips opened to form words, coherent words, but only gasped babbling came out. "Randy… That's… Is it…"

"It is." He moved slowly, yet fast, getting out of his chair and in front of his stunned partner without hesitation. "You remember the promise I gave you a year ago? That evening in the kitchen? When you found out?"

Cody looked up from the tiny yet huge golden ring in his hand –in the box- a sting of fresh tears already clouding his vision as he rapidly blinked his cerulean eyes and slowly nodded his head at the taller man standing in front of him, between his legs.

A small smile was playing across Randy's features, tongue unconsciously snaking out to wet his very dry lips as his breathing picked up and his heart felt as though it might explode. He lowered himself to one knee before Cody could even react, picking the ring out of its case to tangle it between long, slender fingers while his other hand grasped Cody's, eyes closing for a second to compose himself before staring back, longing, love, warmth all transpiring in his else so icy grays.

"You remember me saying 'When the time is right'?"

Again, Cody nodded, brain not able to formulate the words he actually wanted to say, as he was completely lost in the intensity of that very moment, the intensity of Randy's warm stare.

"I think it is right. You know I'm not the best at expressing feelings… and I truly hope that this evening showed you everything I feel for you. How much you mean to me, how much I need you. God, Codes… I'm lost without you. Whenever we're apart, even if it's only a day, I feel as if a part of me is missing. I feel shallow and empty… but as soon as you are around, even if you're only on the phone with me… I can't even express how I feel then. All warm and giddy, happy, content. Like I am freshly in love. Hell, I AM freshly in love. Even after all those years, all the troubles we've gone through, the fights, the arguments, the break-ups. We're still here, together… We're still… We still love each other like we did in the beginning… even more I think. We've grown stronger, more confident, happier, wiser… all of that together. And I don't think I would've ever become the man I am today without you by my side…"

He surely had not planned to say that much. Hell, his plan had been to only ask one question. But, magically, once Randy had started, he had not been able to stop his ramblings anymore. Asides from the occasional gasp for air in-between words, he had practically just spilled his heart to his younger lover. One question, though, the most important one, was still for him to ask.

"Cody Garrett Runnels, my soulmate, my best friend, my partner, my lover, my everything… Will you marry me?"

He had waited for that moment ever since that day almost a year ago. That day when he had found out about the ring and whom it had really been planned for. Him. That day Randy had made that promise to him. That day he had almost given up on them forever. That day everything had changed in the matter of seconds. Completely.

Hell, he had even dreamed of this question long before that day. Ever since they had decided to stop being friends and start being lovers.

And now he was not even able to form ONE simple word, tears streaming down his flushed cheeks, lips quivering and hands sweating as Randy anxiously waited for his decision. Fuck, even a girl would not break down the way he just was.

'Get your composure back, Cody!'

"Yes… Yes, I want to…"

His voice was shrieky and shaking, the words just spluttering out of him, but they were all Randy needed to hear.

Shooting up from his one knee, he was quick to press his lips against Cody's, urgent and needy, a sigh of relief escaping him as he pulled Cody close.

"Wanna congratulate them?"

They were both standing in the kitchen door, John leaning against the doorframe with his arms crossed over his broad chest while Ted was leaning against him, his head resting onto his lovers shoulder. Smile on his lips, proud and happy, he shook his head. "Give 'em some time."

As Randy finally pulled away, breathless and speechless, staring into those beautiful, tear-clouded cobalt blues, the smile on his face was worth a million watt. With shaky fingers, he barely managed to slip the tiny gold onto Cody's finger, with that sealing their fate, their future. Together, forever. "I love you."

I truly hope I'll get the next chapter of "Our story thus far" out soon, but I can't promise anything. My head's so empty that you could play paintball in it without ever hitting something.

Review, pretty please?