"So Douglas," Martin began conversationally, after they were finished the takeoff checks and were heading along nicely. "I recall there being a lot of... oh how shall I put this?" Martin pondered that for a minute. "Touching. Yes, that's it. I recall there being a lot of touching. Especially your hand and my hand. Almost constantly." He narrowed his eyebrows. "What do you have to say about that?"
"Heterosexual hand-holding," Douglas said firmly. "I had to pretend we were partners, remember? I figured it was the least I could do without them questioning it."
"Of course Douglas. Although," he pointed out, "You did hold my hand before you knew you were supposed to be partners."
Douglas glanced at him. "How do you even remember that?"
Martin shrugged. It was foggy, all slow and muffled, like he was trying to run under water, but the basics were there, Douglas holding his hand while he struggled to breathe.
"You said yourself you weren't told until later."
Douglas only scowled.
"It was only because you thought you were dying."
"I'm sure," Martin agreed. "Although, really-"
"Sir?" Douglas interrupted.
"Do please shut up. Just remember who has the picture of a certain someone with another certain someone fallen asleep across the first certain someone, clutching an otter."
Martin frowned. "What?"
"I suppose that wasn't very clear. I have a picture of Arthur sprawled across you clutching little Oliver while you're both asleep."
"Oh," Martin said faintly. He didn't remember that, although since he was asleep, he probably shouldn't.
"My only regret is that I didn't get a picture of you in the pyjamas."
The memory of the footy pyjamas flashed back to him, Arthur giving them to him the night before, putting them on, getting twisted up in them, Douglas carrying him to the car with them on, being at the hospital wearing them.
He groaned and put his face in his hands.
"That's right," Douglas said, and Martin could practically hear the gleeful smirk he was sure was on his face. "It was an interesting week filled with footy pyjamas covered in aeroplanes, stuffed otters named Oliver, O's with lines through them that shouldn't be there, giraffes that love giraffes, and, of course, heterosexual hand-holding."
Martin frowned. "Giraffes that love giraffes?"
Douglas waved a hand. "It's an Arthur thing."
"Ah," Martin said knowingly, like that explained everything. Because it did.
And so they flew off into the sunset, the bloody ridiculous sunset that refused to end.
Such was their luck.
AN- And that's it! Thanks for coming along for the ride. I hope you enjoyed it, since this story sucked a large part of my soul out. If you do happen to get some of the references, of which there are quite a few, MESSAGE THEM TO ME. DO NOT LEAVE THEM IN A REVIEW.