AN: Request for fleya :) You have no idea how happy it made me to get a request. She wanted WillXRon, and here it is! It was hard for me to write this, actually, because honestly I'm more of a Grelliam 'shipper. But it was fun anyway. The reason this is a little off is that it was originally an EricAlan thing. (The idea. I wrote the idea, then I made it WillRon instead of EricAlan) So, Will has some Eric-like tendencies(see: hitting on Ron in the last bit) and Ron is acting a bit like Alan.
SORRRRY. Read and review, and fleya, have a WillRon fic!
Also, the EricAlan fic I wrote, "Of Course" turned out to have people asking for a second chapter. So I've started that, it's from Alan's perspective.
William had catalogued every one of Ronald's smiles. The tiger's grin, when someone made a dirty joke or something along those lines. The easy smile, when he was genuinely comfortable or happy. The tight smile, when he was nervous or faking it, or taking a picture. The sad smile, when he was nostalgic, wistful. The reassuring smile. The quick smile. The list went on. But this was a new one, and William wasn't sure quite what to call it. As he did whenever he had something to figure out, William retraced his steps to do so.
He'd woken up this morning, intensely comfortable, with his young lover curled peacefully in the circle of this arms, snuggled against his chest. Once he'd managed to extricate an arm and put on his glasses so he could actually see his surroundings, he'd noticed that the clock on the bedside table read 6:00-time to get up. Loathe as he was to wake the sleeping blonde when he was so cute asleep, duty called, and that was far more important than remaining in bed with his beautiful subordinate.
...There were times William regretted being so duty-bound.
So, he'd reluctantly woken up Ronald-with a kiss, not that it was really relevant- and was rewarded with the sweetest smile the junior Reaper had ever given him. It was closest to the "easy smile", William supposed, as it was relaxed, happiness radiating from it. But something else radiated from it, too, something William couldn't identify. He felt as though he'd seen it before, somewhere, but he couldn't quite put his finger on it.
Now, he was sitting in his office, trying desperately to concentrate on his paperwork-he had to fill out an accident report(a near constancy when Grell was one of your subordinates). However, he was having issues focusing on exactly how many buildings his redheaded partner had damaged. He was still trying to figure out what this new smile of Ronald's was about.
"Wiiiiill~" Grell sang, oozing around the door of William's office. "Do you still have my scythe? Can I have it back yet?"
"Yes I do, and no, you can't have it." William replied absently, not looking at the flamboyant Reaper. Attention would only encourage him.
"Will, your words lack their usual bite and brutal sarcastic sexiness!" Grell said, widening his eyes in dramatic dismay.
"Sutcliff, kindly remove yourself from my office and complete your reports. I am having to fill out damage and incident reports for your latest escapade, and I am running quite low on patience for your ridiculous antics."
"There it is! Good morning, Will!" Grell said, dancing out... and turning the wrong way to get back to their unit office. Clearly he had no intention of filling out any kind of paperwork.
That man was just a lost cause.
William finally finished counting the number of structures Grell had demolished-and how many merely had irreparable damage- somewhere in midmorning. It would have been easier if he didn't have to do it by memory, but damned if he was taking a trip out to the figurative and literal "scene of the crime" unless he absolutely had to. Now, his unit been alone in that office for the better part of two hours, and it was time to check on them and make sure they hadn't destroyed anything. As he headed towards the office, he made internal bets with himself about what he would find his subordinates doing. Alan would (thankfully) be working, unless he was trying to keep Eric from hitting on him. Grell would not be working, in fact, he probably wouldn't even be in the office.
"Ah, sweetheart, come on." He heard Eric say. He'd been correct on the first guess, Alan would be fending off Eric's advances. William entered the office. Yes, the smallest Reaper in his command was indeed trying as hard as possible to ignore the tall blonde, who was lounging at his desk, a slightly obscene grin on his face. Grell was, surprisingly, also at his desk, although, unsurprisingly, not working. He didn't see Ronald, though.
"Slingby." He said, mostly for the quiet fun of watching the athletic man jump out of his skin. "Get to work. You too, Sutcliff." He said, rounding on his partner.
"Oh, but Will-"
"Sutcliff-" William inserted as much venom as possible into the name, while keeping his face absolutely stationary.
"Good morning, William." Alan said, able to focus on his work now that Eric wasn't bothering him. "I'm sorry about him." He pointed the end of his pen at Eric and returned to his papers.
"You don't have to apologize for me, sweetheart." Eric smirked. Alan looked pointedly at him.
"Where's Knox?" William said to Grell as the other two bickered.
"Loverboy's down the hall, making coffee for everyone." William gave Grell a glare, then turned to find Ronald. He wasn't interested in Grell's petty harpings. He was only interested-especially when he entered the hall and came within sight of Ronald-in his youngest subordinate.
"Hello, Will." Ronald said softly as William walked up to him. He only called William by his nickname when they were alone. Then he gave William that sweet, happy smile that his dark-haired lover couldn't classify. How beautiful Ron was when he smiled like that, William wanted desperately to pull the slender young man so close he'd be able to feel every inch of that gorgeous body against his. How much he hated that he knew doing that would be unprofessional.
"Mm, hello." William replied, moving just a little closer than necessary to the young blonde. Not close enough to draw stares-unless he stayed there too long.
"Will, are you smelling my hair?" William cleared his throat and moved back. Truthfully, he had been, but he'd never let that on. It was just, well, Ronald had taken his morning shower in his lover's flat, and when he smelled like William's shampoo, it was impossible for him to not find that enticing. "Well, I've got the coffee... so I should get back to the office..."
"Yes, yes." He said, moving back a step to allow Ronald to pass. "Forgive me." Ronald turned his head back and gave William another one of those smiles. Sometime he would figure out what it was that made that smile so different from the others, but right now he was merely trying to keep from knocking the coffee out of Ronald's hands and pushing him back against the wall. Yes, he knew it was terribly inappropriate in the workplace, but it was that smile that was doing it to him.
I know I've seen that smile before somewhere. Or something quite like it.
"Miss Grell, there's no cinnamon at the coffeemaker, I'm sorry." William heard Ronald say as he turned into the office. He headed to his own office, sitting down heavily in his chair and resting his head in his hands. What was that smile? And why did it do that to him?
"Hey, Boss." William looked up as Eric walked in, throwing down a stack of papers onto his supervisor's desk. "Alan's and my paperwork."
"Thank you, Slingby. Now, how much of it did you do?" Eric sat down in the desk chair across from him.
"I signed where Alan told me to. Oh, and I filled out that one." Eric pointed to one of the sheets. William glanced at it and looked back at him.
"All it required was a checkmark and a signature."
"You're right. Alan did the checkmark. So, what's bothering you?"
"Nothing's bothering me." Actually, it's been a pretty great day, especially if I can figure out what's up with that smile.
"Ah, give it up, man. It's OK, I've already got overtime, just talk to me. If you don't start acting normal again, Grell's gonna try talking to you. So, spill. Trouble with Ron?"
"Slingby, there's nothing wrong with me. I'm simply trying to figure something out. It's not important." William sighed, dwelling on that lovely smile. "Although, if it keeps Sutcliff away from me, please make something up that I told you."
"You're going to regret telling me to make something up. I'm very creative when it suits my purposes." Eric grinned evilly. "It's the smile, isn't it?" He said, face suddenly serious. William's eyes snapped up to meet his, unable to keep the shocked look off his visage. How had Eric known that?
"Yes," He replied, "how-"
"Ah, I got it from Alan. I really hope I didn't do it, I never want to see that expression on my face." Eric said offhandedly, putting his feet on William's desk. Oh! It was Alan where William had seen it before-although it had been directed at Eric, not him. "You're going to figure out what it means. You're gonna like it, too."
"You're not going to tell me?"
"I'm almost sure you'd rather I didn't. I asked Grell." Eric answered. "Well, I've had enough touchy-feely, so I'm going to go tell everybody you've got some kind of STD-or maybe a kid you didn't know about!" He finished brightly, getting up and leaving the room. William thought about calling after him and realized it'd be no use.
He finished filling out his reports for the last Reapings, in addition to one more incident report that came in-Grell had somehow managed to bloody one of the poor fools who worked in accounting. When lunch break came, William was grateful for it, though, again, he would never tell anyone that he wasn't ecstatically happy to continue work. Or, at least "kind of pleased", William didn't do "ecstatically happy".
"So I heard about 'Bardella'." Ronald said, entering the office and closing the door behind him.
"STD or daughter I didn't know about?" William said drily.
"You really can't tell with a name like that," Ronald replied, "but it's your daughter." He sat down in the chair Eric had vacated a few hours before. "So, what is bothering you?"
"There's nothing bothering me. I told Slingby that, too."
"And then you gave him liberty to make something up. Well, I don't think even Miss Grell bought it-he'd not actually stupid, you know." Ron raised an eyebrow and smiled. Not that smile, not the one he'd been obsessing over all day. But, as with most of Ronald's smiles, it was amazing, in William's opinion. "Oh, and I have my work mostly done-"
"By which you mean you've spent the morning trying to keep Sutcliff from destroying something."
"Well, yes. I'm sorry about the guy in accounting, but it was him or the accounting building."
"Day well spent." William rolled his eyes. "So, did you want to go get lunch?"
"Do you have any idea how much your speech relaxes when you aren't in 'supervisor mode'?" Ronald smiled that new, wonderful smile-and William almost wasn't sure he cared what it meant as long as Ronald kept doing it. "Yes, let's go get lunch."
"Mmm, never mind, let's stay in." William said, standing up and walking around the desk to kneel by Ronald's chair.
Ron had woken up that morning to William's lips. It had been a pleasant way to awaken, to be sure. It had been at that moment that Ron had realized that, somewhere along the line, he'd fallen in love with this man. He'd smiled at the realization, looking up at his thin, dark lover.
"G'morning, Will." He had sat up, feeling William's eyes on his bare back. William. He loved William. "I call dibs on first shower."
"Mm, go ahead. I'll make breakfast."
'Breakfast' had been toast. As good a supervisor as William was, he wasn't a great cook. Work had been business as normal, excepting that encounter in the hallway, and that had brought them to where they sat now-or knelt, in William's case.
"Did you drink something Miss Grell gave you?" Ron asked, as his lover took one of his hands and turned it over, kissing the palm. "I told you that was a bad idea." William laughed, something even Ron rarely got to see. "Seriously, Will, you're acting really..."
"I'm acting perfectly normal."
"You're really not." Not that Ron minded. In fact, he kind of enjoyed how William's eyes glinted with desire so often today. If only he knew why, especially in light of his new revelation about his love for William. "Anyway, we're at work." Those words snapped William out of whatever trance he was in, and his handsome supervisor stood up, a slight flush of embarrassment on his cheeks. Ron had known it would-at work, work always took top priority for William, something Ron occasionally resented, but saw the sense of.
"I'm sorry." William said, extending a hand. "Let's go get lunch." Ron took it and stood up.
"Are you really going to hold my hand in the hallway?" He asked as they reached the door.
"Uh, no." William dropped his hand. "Sorry."
"Oh, stop apologizing, Will." I love him. I love him! Ron smiled again. He seemed to be doing that a lot today. Suppose love does that to you.
Ronald was smiling that smile again. And oh, what a smile it was. He'd done it almost all the way through lunch, and, as they walked away from the Dispatch Building(work was finally over), he was doing it again. That lovely, willpower-destroying smile. William was sure it was his favorite of all of Ronald's smiles, despite it's newness.
"Will?" Ronald's eyes met his, and William wanted to reach down and take him by the chin and kiss him.
"Yes?" He replied, only wishing they were out of sight of the Dispatch Center so he could put an arm around the man walking next to him.
"How long has... this..." Ronald gestured between the two of them. "been happening?" If it were anyone but Ronald, William might have found that slightly offensive. But Ronald was so honest he knew the blonde was merely asking, no double-meaning.
"Why?" William might have kept count, almost to the second, but that didn't mean he had to let on.
"I was just wondering," Ronald said, "I mean, I thought it was important." It is important. Everything about you is important. Especially figuring out what that smile meant. "My apartment?" William nodded. Anywhere, really, would do. Should he just ask Ronald about the smile? Would that seem odd? It would, wouldn't it?
As they stepped into Ronald's flat, William contemplated skipping dinner and conversation and even hanging up their coats, and just pushing Ronald down onto the couch and-
"Are you going to take off your shoes?" Ronald said, cutting into William's increasingly crude train of thought. It was that smile, must be, because he could swear his mind wasn't usually this dirty. "What do you want for dinner?"
"Not hungry." William said, kicking off his shoes and coming up behind Ronald. He put his arms around the smaller man's waist and pulled him back against his body.
"Your sentence lacks a subject and it doesn't bother you?" Ronald asked sarcastically. "Will, I-oh." William chuckled against the blonde's neck. Ronald elbowed him softly in the stomach as the taller man slid a hand down to his lover's hip. "Get off me, Will. Wait until after dinner, will you? I'm hungry."
"I am, too."
"You just said you weren't."
"Not in the same way you are." Ronald rolled his eyes and shook William off, walking over to the fridge.
"Ah, go take a cold shower."
"Only if you come with me."
It was only later that William forced his mind back to the smile. He still hadn't figured it out, although he'd certainly gotten plenty of it. "You'll like what it means", Eric had said. But what did it mean? Ronald leaned his head up against William's shoulder, giving him that smile again.
"I love you, Will." He said quietly, so quietly that William wouldn't have heard it if it hadn't been absolutely quiet in the room. In fact, even through the silence-which fell even heavier when he stopped breathing- he wasn't sure he'd heard Ronald right.
"What?" Ronald's smile turned down at the corners in a mock frown and his hand came out to smack the back of William's head, disturbing his previously perfect hair.
"You dolt, I've just confessed my love to you, and all you've got to say is 'what'? I said I love you, William." William drew back a little, a shocked look on his face. His mouth moved soundlessly for a moment, and then he spoke, his voice slightly hoarse with emotion.
"Well, I... you... oh." Ronald raised an eyebrow at the slim, flustered man. "I... I love you too." Was that what the smile was, was it love? William smiled too, fairly certain he looked just as silly as Eric had been worried about looking, but not caring.
"Good boy." Ronald's voice was low now, and burning with an entirely different feeling. "Now kiss me."
As William complied, mentally cataloguing Ronald's new, "in-love" smile, he wondered idly whether love always made people this happy.