It had been raining that night, too.
Edward sat on the edge of the mattress, elbows on his knees. Rian still lay in bed behind him, curled under the sheet and sleeping deeply. He had not noticed Edward shift out from under him, although he had sleepily curled toward the indent in the mattress where Edward had rolled away.
The power had gone off about an hour ago, and while the rain had not let up, thunder only rumbled occasionally in the distance. It was relaxing, laying in the bed and listening to the rain pound against the window, a warm body pressed to him, completely sated.
It was relaxing, and still it felt wrong.
Edward had not expected company; he had not expected for Rian to turn up on his doorstep again. The young alchemist had taken an interest in him, he liked being around Edward and had all but taken over Havoc's usual role as weekend babysitter for Edward-who-got-distracted-by-everything.
This wasn't the first time they'd had sex. The first time was weeks ago, Rian full of confidence and a bravado that had partially evaporated as soon as Edward had touched his cock. He was inexperienced but eager, and he stared at Edward so intensely, with dark eyes that should be masking emotion instead putting it on full display.
They were a silly little fling, Edward kept telling himself. Rian would get tired of this game soon and there was no point to getting attached to him, or this.
He glanced over his shoulder at Rian, whose sleeping face was visible in the very faint natural light. It was honest and open, and so very, very young. It made Edward feel old to look at him - sometimes he felt a thousand years old with the weight of everything he had been through in his life. Rian was so young by comparison.
Edward sighed and looked back to the window as lightning lit up the night sky. He should break it off. He couldn't keep playing this game, he couldn't keep pretending that this was just sex, that this was nothing at all. The way Rian looked at him lit up his insides like a generator; it made his stomach curl into this little ball and he wanted so very badly to reciprocate the feeling. But he couldn't. He couldn't tell if this was genuine affection, or if this was colored by nostalgia. The dark hair, his dark eyes ... even occasionally, in the tilt of his grin. Rian hadn't learned to smirk like him, and that was a blessing.
The memories of the man he loved were dulling with the passage of time. If he didn't have photographs, would he be able to remember his face at all? Edward ran a hand through his hair, brushing his bangs back past his ears with the gesture. It made him feel sick to realize it.
Rian didn't stir as Edward got up off the mattress. The electricity might have been off, but Edward knew his home forward and backward. A half-burned pillar candle in a sconce cast flickering shadows in the den, but Edward didn't need the light for much. He hid his good whiskey in the bottom of cabinet. There was half a bottle remaining; one of the few things he was able to scavenge from Roy's home before it got taken to pieces by the military.
Whiskey burned his throat and opened his sinuses. He sat, holding the glass by his fingertips as he stared into the warm, flickering light. Edward had no idea what to do, and that was unlike him. He and Rian would have to have a very long talk about this, whatever this was, in the morning. He couldn't deal with Rian turning up on his doorstep every weekend. The sex was good - not fantastic, although Rian was learning and it was more than Edward had gotten in years - but he wasn't ready for whatever it was Rian was offering him. He put his whiskey glass down and sighed deeply, leaning back against the couch and staring at the shadows on the ceiling. Why could nothing in his life ever be easy?
When Edward opened his eyes again, it was morning. Dull gray light filtered in through the window, and he felt too warm. The candle he had lit had burned out in the night. Edward shifted, intending to move forward but being stopped by the heavy weight on his side.
Rian had dragged the comforter out of the bedroom and snuggled up against him on the couch, wrapping the comforter around them both. Edward's arm had fallen from the back of the couch and Rian had tucked himself under it, sleeping against Edward's side securely.
Edward ... smiled. Then he pulled Rian just that little bit closer to him and closed his eyes again. Maybe, just maybe he could be allowed this small measure of comfort.
He could only hope.