Gazing Upon the Sky With Dampened Eyes

[500 Themes: 201]

The fact that he nearly killed Kotetsu is impossible to erase from his thoughts.

The fact that he wanted to kill the man is so damnably opposite, so strange that Barnaby has to shudder, deep down to his bones, hands shaking and teeth worrying his lower lip. He barely registers tearing the disgusting so-called 'new' model of his suit from his body, tossing it to Saitou, and sagging back into a seat. Barnaby barely registers anything at all that isn't Kotetsu.

Was it bad that his first thought was that Kotetsu is as sweet as Barnaby remembered?

Most lovers probably thought about how their significant other was as handsome as they remembered, or something along those lines, but – even as awkward as it was, even as much as it through him off-kilter, left him flushed and uneasy and attempting to smooth his hair reflexively, the sheer affection in Kotetsu's embrace, the fumbling hug and the genuine relief in his gaze –

It made Barnaby melt.

And it leaves him wanting to reach for the man next to him, leaves him wanting, so badly, to simply wrap his hands up in his hair and kiss him – memorize for the umpteenth time what his lips felt like, what his teeth felt like nipping into his lower lip, what his tongue felt like dragging against his own, what it felt like to be made breathless by Kotetsu and Kotetsu alone.

How dare Maverick try and take that from him.

"You've been lookin' at me for awhile, Bunny-chan."

Barnaby flushes, then, gaze flickering to the side – to Saitou and Kotetsu's friend-apparent, Ben. Some things, like everything he wanted to say and do to Kotetsu just then, were not meant for the company of others. "I… well – "

"Don't worry." And Kotetsu smiles, a hand reaching out, the knuckles of it brushing against one high cheekbone and fingers curling, just slightly back through his hair. Barnaby wants to melt again. He wants to grab hold of that hand, to pull it close, to kiss it and to nuzzle his face into it, to tell Kotetsu how much he missed him, still misses him, because they can't do anything in this little space, can't do everything with so much still on the line.

He wants to tell him how much he loves him.

"I'm here now. I'm not gonna let you leave again, Bunny."

Now there are tears in his eyes, and Barnaby can't suppress a shiver. Kotetsu's hand is warm, so warm, and Barnaby wishes, more acutely than ever, to be enveloped in everything that is Kotetsu – his smile, his eyes, the wrinkles at the edges of them from smiling too much, the strength and breadth of his arms and god, it aches to think about it, even being so close to the man he almost forgot.

"Good." The response is watery, strained – Barnaby doesn't care. "Good. Don't let me leave. Please don't."

For the moment, all he can do is reach up and clasp Kotetsu's hand – and that's fine, just fine, as long as there is that one, simple promise between them.