Brian awoke with a start as a fist smacked into his face. A jolt of pain ran through his nose as he peeled the afore-mentioned fist off and flung it back in the direction of its rightful owner.
"Jesus Christ Justin"
There was no reply. Of course not. Justin was still fast asleep unaware of the wrath that was about to befall him.
"Justin" this time a little louder with a swift prod thrown in for good measure.
"Mmm…" came the sleepy reply as the boy shifted slightly.
"Will you watch where you're flinging your oafish hands? You nearly took my eye out"
"Mmm…k" and he promptly fell back asleep.
Brian looked down at the boy next to him. The sheets were bunched up around his waist leaving the top part of his smooth pale body exposed to Brian's wandering eyes. The older man licked his lips at the thought of trailing his tongue all the way up that perfect chest. His head was turned slightly away from Brian leaving his neck exposed. The perfect invitation. His hair was spread round his head like a halo. His right arm was stretched out across the bed and his left lay across his stomach where it had landed when Brian had thrown it off his face. Most fags in the city would give their right arm to have this kid in their bed. Who wouldn't? He was fucking hot. Brian cocked his head as his gaze travelled all over Justin's body. He looked good enough to eat and he briefly considered doing that until a dash of pain through his face reminded him of exactly why he was awake at the ungodly hour of… SHIT… 8.10AM. Fuck! He had to be out of the door in 20 minutes – they both did. He reached over and grabbed the alarm clock only to discover that nobody had set it. Piece of crap. He threw it back in the direction of the nightstand and heard it crash to the floor.
"JUSTIN" he tried again, shaking him vigorously and pulling the covers off him "GET UP NOW"
"Briiiiaaan… its cold"
"Justin it's after eight. GET. THE. FUCK. UP ."
Justin sat bolt upright in such a fashion that any other day Brian would have laughed out loud. His dishevelled hair was sticking out in all directions. He turned to look at the clock to make sure his lover wasn't playing some kind of joke. The clock wasn't there. Huh?
"Why the fuck didn't you set the alarm" Brian growled at him as he pulled clothes out of the closet and threw Justin's duffle bag at him.
"Since when is it my job to set the alarm?" Justin asked incredulously
"Since I told you to"
"No you didn't"
"Brian you didn't" the blonde protested as he clamboured out of bed and followed the retreating back into the bathroom.
"Whatever… I really don't have time to argue with you" Brian slammed the shower door shut and started scrubbing himself.
Justin sighed and opened the door again to let himself in. He poured shampoo into his hands and reached up to Brian's hair.
The man flinched "Just watch what you're doing with those hands"
"Why?" Justin's brows furrowed in confusion.
"Because I don't think a black eye would really go with my new Armani suit."
"What are you talking about?"
"What am I…?" Brian looked down at him in disbelief "What am I talking about?" He stopped, pulled away from Justin's hands and breathed. "I'm talking about you nearly blinding me this morning."
"Oh" Justin vaguely recalled Brian harping on about something while he'd been trying to sleep in the moments before his rude awakening. "Oops."
"Jeez Brian lighten up. I didn't blind you and both your eyes are still firmly in their sockets."
"Yeah you just decided to break my fucking nose instead."
"Don't be such a drama queen." He turned under the spray and rinsed out his own hair. "Besides, if I hadn't woken you up we'd both still be asleep now. So really, when you think about it, I did you a favour." He beamed at his non-boyfriend who didn't deign that comment with a reply. Instead he opened the door and stomped out the shower.
Brian stopped the car just around the corner from Vanguard. The ride to the office had been a silent one. Brian was still in a bad mood and Justin knew better than to risk agitating the man further. He'd flicked on the radio at one point only to have Brian grunt something and flick it back off again.
"Do I get a kiss goodbye?" he asked batting his eyelashes in a last ditch attempt to rid Brian of his mood before his poor employees bore the brunt of it.
"I'm going to see you in five fucking minutes. Get out."
Justin rolled his eyes and climbed out the car. He couldn't believe that Brian was so mad about something so stupid. Sometimes the man was so unreasonable. What a fucking drama queen. Now his bad mood was rubbing off on him. Great. He slammed the car door for good measure and stomped off down the street towards the office.
Brian winced as the car door came crashing back to its frame. Didn't he know that this was a classic car? Little shit – he was going to pay for that later.
He drove past Justin and rounded the corner before turning into the parking lot at Vanguard. It was annoying that they had to keep their relation… erm no… their… special friendship… no not that either, that sounded creepy. Well whatever it was they were doing it sucked that they had to keep it a secret at work. But he knew that Vance wouldn't go for it and he didn't want anyone to think that Justin had used anything but his artistic talent to get the job.
He made it to his office at 9.06am
"You're late" Cynthia chirped from behind her desk.
"Fuck off" he snapped back "and get me a god damn coffee." He slammed the door and ran a hand through his hair. That was not a morning he wanted to repeat on regular occasions. He threw his briefcase down onto the desk and flopped down in his chair. He picked up the mirror which was resting on his desk and tentatively touched his nose. If he got a bruise he was going to kill that kid.
There was a timid knock on the door and Cynthia peeked in
"Is it safe to come in?"
"Why the fuck do you bother knocking if you're going to barge in anyway?"
Cynthia ignored the dig and plonked his coffee cup down on the desk. "What's up? Justin dump you again?"
He shot her a look that said more than words ever could and she held up her hands in mock surrender.
"Ok I'm going. Don't forget, staff meeting in twenty minutes" and with that she scurried out.
Brian glanced up as Justin walked into the conference room chatting to one of the girls from the art department. They sat at the far end of the room and never looked in his direction once.
Vance came in and started prattling on about a big new account they were pitching next week and how it was vitally important for everyone on the team to give 110%. Brian zoned out and stole regular glances in Justin's direction. Few enough so that nobody but Cynthia realised he was doing it – Brian made a mental note to personally wipe that smirk off her face – but enough to be fairly sure that the boy didn't look his way once. That was odd. Usually he couldn't keep his eyes off him.
Brian realised that Vance had stopped droning on and was looking at him expectantly. Shit. Had someone asked him a question? Cynthia's smirk doubled and then she shook her head, no, nobody had asked anything it was just his turn to speak. Brian wondered when exactly Cynthia had become able to read his mind. Relieved he added his two cents about the boards for the Stockwell campaign and then the meeting was finished.
Justin's new best friend – no of course he wasn't jealous, he wasn't a lesbian for fucks sake – motioned that she needed to talk to him so he headed over. She had some irrelevant questions about some unimportant boards and Brian's mind was more occupied with why Justin was studiously avoiding eye contact. Was something wrong? Had something happened? Was someone giving him a hard time? Was his hand playing up? Was he in pain?
The girl chose that moment to end their pointless conversation and she and Justin turned in the direction of the art department. Brian's mind was still somewhat in over-drive and he called out to the blonde
The boy turned back round to face him
"Bring those boards up to my office as soon as they're done"
"Okay" his face was devoid of expression and his eyes were cold. Suddenly it dawned on Brian. Justin was pissed at HIM. What the fuck? He wasn't the one who had woken up with a fist in his face and it wasn't Brian's fault that they were late this morning. He distinctly remembered telling his lover to set the alarm. Well… he vaguely did. He scratched his head. Well he'd definitely thought about telling him to. Whatever. The point was that this was not his fault and Justin had no cause to be pissy with him. What a fucking drama princess.
Brian's mood worsened. He was now even more pissed that Justin was pissed that he was pissed when he damn well had a right to be. To think he'd been worried that something was wrong. As if he didn't have enough to deal with already. Little twat. He stormed back to his office and slammed the door.
In the art department Justin and his new found friend Rachel were putting the finishing touches to the boards for some crappy eye cream company. Miracle cure for wrinkles. Sure it was.
Rachel turned to him and grimaced "there… guess it's your turn to go and face the wrath of Kinney!"
"Yeah" Justin mumbled back. Really, she had no idea
"Well at least he knew your name. I still don't think he knows mine" she laughed and nudged him with her elbow "he's pretty hot though eh?"
Justin grinned despite himself, proud that other people thought his boyfriend, well, non-boyfriend was hot "Yeah he's okay."
Justin resigned himself to seeing Brian and trudged upstairs to his lord and master's office, not sure what would await him there. Hell, he wasn't even sure Brian wanted the damn boards; it was probably just an excuse to exercise his power over him and show him that he was pissed – as if he hadn't worked that out already.
Cynthia gave him a sympathetic smile and waved her hand, indicating that he was okay to go in.
Brian looked up as he opened the door
"There's this wonderful concept known as knocking, ever heard of it?"
Justin bit back an equally sarcastic reply and simply rolled his eyes.
"Here's the boards you wanted" as he all but threw them on the desk "Is that everything?" He looked his lover right in the eye to let him know he wasn't even the slightest bit scared of him.
"No it fucking isn't – sit down."
Justin hesitated. He didn't really want to have the inevitable "whose fault it was" argument in their workplace.
He gave in and plonked himself into the chair, resting his leg against the desk – much like he had done a little over 2 weeks ago. He smiled slightly at the still fresh memory of that night. He knew Brian had been somewhat surprised by the way he'd walked in and demanded that the older man take him back – both into his job and his life. His smile got slightly bigger as he remembered what happened after that. Brian's frantic kisses, his hands running all over Justin's body, he beautiful hard cock taking Justin's tight little…
Justin looked up abruptly. Shit. Had he been thinking out loud again?
Brian sighed "I said – What. The. Fuck. Is. Up. Your. Ass?"
"Christ I think we need to get your hearing checked"
Justin shook his head in amazement "No I heard you… but shouldn't it be me asking that?"
"Well I think we both know what my problem is… now I'm asking you"
"You. You're up my ass"
His lover smirked at that so Justin quickly amended himself before he had any time for wisecracks
"Your bad attitude is up my ass"
"Is that right?"
"Yes. I said I was sorry about this morning and…"
Brian cut him off "I believe your exact words were 'oops'"
"Oh well I'm sorry. Terribly sorry. I'm a horrible boyfriend, no sorry a horrible 'person you fuck more than once', a despicable human being. I hereby pledge to devote the rest of my life trying to make up for my awful mistake. Happy now?"
"I'm almost giddy from joy"
"Christ Brian it was an accident"
"Like not setting the alarm?"
"You didn't tell me to set the alarm"
"So you admit you didn't?"
"I didn't fucking admit anything"
"You know what, I think you should spend more time with your son, you have the same mental age. You'd get on great."
Justin sighed. This was getting them nowhere. But he was damned if he was going to apologise for something he didn't do. He stood up and made a move towards the door.
"I should get back downstairs"
There was a brief grunting sound from Brian's direction and a rustle of paper.
"Well we're just going round in circles and we agreed to keep it professional at work"
There was another grunting sound which Justin took as his cue to leave. Sometimes this man was so exasperating.
"I'll see you later?"
"Yes Justin you will see me later" he snapped.
Brian's head ached. It was half-way through the afternoon and he was exhausted. One of his major clients was being a major pain in his ass and he'd just about had it with them. If he heard one more moan or complaint from them he would not be held responsible for his actions. All he wanted to do was go home, order some Thai and watch a movie with Justin curled up to him.
Oh. Justin. Right. He felt a bit bad about their morning shout-a-thon. The more he thought about it, maybe he hadn't asked Justin to set the alarm. And his nose seemed to be fine now. He decided to let the whole thing drop as that would work out much better for the evening he planned on having. He buzzed Cynthia on his phone.
"Yes?" she stuck her head around the door.
"Do me a favour... go grab me a couple of movies from across the street"
"Erm ok" she was pretty sure that wasn't in her job description but Brian seemed to have calmed down somewhat after this morning's horrendous mood and she'd do just about anything to make that remain the case.
"Oh and grab some ice-cream too... you can put it in the freezer downstairs for now"
Cynthia's eyes widened "ice cream?"
"yes, you know that cold stuff that Ben and Jerry made their fortune from"
"YOU want ice cream? Brian you hate all things containing fat and sugar... Justin said you won't even let him bring junk food into your apartment"
Brian rolled his eyes "just get it."
Justin was becoming increasingly worried. Since Brian had picked him up from around the corner after work he'd not once mentioned that morning. He had in fact been surprisingly pleasant to him. He'd ordered them some take-out, rented some movies... hell he'd even let Justin choose the first one. Was this some kind of calm-before-the-storm? Was he being lulled into a false sense of security? The final straw came when Brian sauntered back from the kitchen holding a tub of Chunky Monkey in one hand and two spoons in the other.
"What are you doing?"
Brian looked down at the carton in his hand and then back up at Justin, confused
"I got you some ice-cream"
"Well I was thinking maybe you'd like to eat it"
"Well… that's what ice-cream's for Sunshine"
"Cut the smart ass comments Brian, what's going on?"
"Last time I checked we were eating dinner and watching a movie"
"I swear to god if you say 'why' one more time I'm going to kill you"
Justin sighed "what happened to 'Christ Justin you're such a twat, you broke my nose, Justin, you didn't set the alarm Justin blah blah blah"
"Oh that… forget about it" Brian sat back down and tried to pull Justin closer to him.
"Forget about it? Just like that?"
"Well I thought you'd be pleased. I'm forgiving you"
"YOU'RE forgiving ME?"
"What about me?" Justin spluttered
"What about you?" Brian looked confused again.
"Don't you want to know if I've forgiven you?"
"What the fuck did I do?" Surely if Justin was pissed that he was pissed, now that he wasn't pissed Justin shouldn't be either.
Justin clamboured to his feet and had to stop himself from shaking the man
"Gee, I dunno, how about acting like the biggest dick on earth"
"I had reason to"
Justin pinched the bridge of his nose in a very Brian-like gesture "No. You didn't. You did NOT tell me to set the alarm and it's not like I hit you on purpose – I WAS ASLEEP."
Brian sat and stared at him in disbelief. Here he was willing to forget this morning ever happened and Justin actually wanted to fight about it. Fuck that. He stood up and moved towards the bedroom.
"Now where are you going?" Justin marched after him,
"I thought you didn't want to go out tonight?"
"I changed my mind" Brian grabbed some clothes out of the closet and pulled his shirt off. Justin opened his mouth to speak and Brian smirked as the boy was clearly distracted by his half naked state. The blond shook his head and focused his eyes back on Brian's face.
"And that's your answer is it?
"Yup" He threw his pants on the bed and tugged up his jeans. He grabbed his wallet out the pocket of the discarded pants and strode off towards to door.
Justin sank to the bed and listened to the loft door slam. That went well. Maybe he should have let it drop but dammit, it wasn't his fault and he didn't need Brian's gracious 'forgiveness'. Asshole. And now as usual Brian had gone out to fuck away all of his problems.
Well, two can play that game Kinney. He wasn't going to sit around waiting for him to come home. He dug out his favourite 'fuck me' outfit and quickly got changed. He called a cab and helped himself to a drink from Brian's extensive collection. No point going out completely sober.
He knew Brian would head straight to Babylon so that's exactly where he went. As he entered he did a quick sweep of the dance floor but he didn't see Brian anywhere. As usual Michael, Ben, Ted and Emmet were propping up the bar so Justin made his way over.
"Hey boy wonder" Michael greeted him with a half wave. Things were still strained between the two of them.
Emmett grabbed the blonde into a hug "Hey baby, you look hot"
"Thanks Em, have you seen Brian?"
"Er… not for a while" The look on his face told Justin exactly where Brian was. He'd clearly wasted no time. He shrugged at the group and turned to order a drink. He downed it and headed out to the dance floor. If there was one problem Justin never had it was finding someone to dance with him. As soon as he hit the floor there were hands grabbing at him and sweaty bodies rubbing up against his. He picked the hottest guy he could see and started dancing close to him. The guy picked up the hint and positioned his body up behind Justin's. The blond was soon lost in the music and the feeling of a lean hard body grinding into his.
Brian left the backroom and made his way over to the bar. His friends were still there – with the exception of Emmett, Brian doubted they'd moved all night. They eyed him nervously as he approached.
Ted looked down, Ben looked away and Michael looked slightly on edge.
"What?" he snapped again. He saw Michael's eyes travel out to the dance floor so he turned to follow his gaze. What he saw was Justin practically fucking some over-styled twink in the middle of the dance floor.
"When did he get here?" he demanded
"Er... about 10 minutes after you went into the backroom with that guy" Michael looked decidedly uncomfortable "are you gonna go over there?"
"Why would I do that?" Brian asked
"Well... to... umm... tell him you're here and break that up"
"What Justin does with tweaked-out club kids is his own business. Got nothing to do with me"
His friends all exchanged concerned glances but knew better than to push the issue.
"Just like what I do" Brian paused to grab the arm of a good looking stranger "is none of his business".
With that he walked off once more in the direction of the backroom, good looking stranger in tow.
Michael looked at Ben, clearly confused "I thought those two had sorted everything out"
Ben shrugged "you know Brian... maybe he didn't mean anything by it"
"But he said that what they both do has nothing to do with the other... that it's none of their business"
"What's none of whose business?" came a voice in his ear.
Michael turned to find Justin standing at his side sandwiched between himself and Ted.
"Oh... erm, well I was just talking to Brian" Michael stammered nervously
"And?" Justin raised his eyebrows.
"He... he was just talking about you and him... you know?"
"Not really" it was Justin's turn to look confused "What did he say"
"Oh nothing really... only that you and he aren't... you know... cos I thought you guys were together again... but he... well... erm..." Michael trailed off when he saw the hurt shine through Justin's eyes.
Ben stepped forward and touched Justin's arm "He didn't really say anything Justin... he just went back to the backroom."
Brian tucked himself back into his pants and refastened his belt. The blow job had been okay – not the best he'd had (it was pretty hard for anyone to beat Justin in those stakes) but by no means the worst.
He turned round to find Justin next to him, an unplacable expression on his face.
"So that's it?" he demanded of Brian
The older man looked around, confused. What was with this kid and his cryptic questions tonight?
"Is what it?" he asked
"It's over again?"
It was then that Brian placed the blonde's expression. It was the one that Justin wore just before he had a major princess fit. He glanced around the backroom and decided that whatever his young lover wanted to say he'd rather he said it somewhere else – away from the curious looks they were already receiving. He tried to walk around the boy to exit the backroom but Justin grabbed his arm
"Don't just walk off"
"I'm not… but whatever this is about I think I'd rather be somewhere more private". He grabbed Justin's hand and pulled him out of the room. Once out he turned to his young lover whose princess face had merged with his angry one.
"Don't pull me round like a doll."
Brian pinched the bridge of his nose with his thumb and forefinger. Justin had his arms crossed in front of him and his bottom lip stuck out in a petulant pout. He looked like a kid who didn't get what he wanted for Christmas. It made Brian want to put him over his lap and spank him.
"This is hardly more private" he continued.
"Fine" Brian took hold of his arm again and dragged him into the bathroom. He pushed him into a stall and locked the door behind them.
"I told you not to drag me around. I'm not your toy"
"Get to the point Justin"
"The point is I hate you"
"Is this just a game to you?"
"Well if it is, it's not a very fun one. Even I'd have trouble selling it"
"Are you trying to get back at me for Ethan?"
"Am I going to start understanding you at some point?"
"What? Take me back so that you could be the one to end it. I knew it was too easy, that you couldn't just let it go."
Brian looked down at him. His eyes were glistening with tears he was trying to hold back but his face was still showing anger.
"What. The. Fuck. Are. You talking about?"
"You know what"
"Justin I really don't"
The blonde furrowed his brow in confusion. That combined with the look of unshed tears in his eyes made Brian want to hold him and never let go.
"You told the guys that we were finished"
"No I didn't"
"But they said…"
"Why the fuck would I say that" Brian cut him off
"Well today… the fight and everything…"
"That was just a stupid fight… it's not like we've never had one before" He pushed Justin's hair out of his eyes and gently touched his cheek. "You really thought I'd… finish… this... over today?"
Justin shrugged "No… but then the guys…" he trailed off
"Fuck the guys – what the hell do they know?"
The blonde gave a slight smile "so you still love me?"
Brian snorted "let's not go crazy sunshine"
The slight smile developed into a grin and Justin flashed his 'I know you do' look. His older lover rolled his eyes and reached over to unlock the door. Justin stopped his hand
"Everything's cool right?"
"Yes Justin. Everything's 'cool'" he leant down and kissed his boy on the lips. Justin sighed into his mouth and wrapped himself around Brian. The older man re-locked the door.
"On second thoughts... let's stay here for a while."