wow guys, this update for reggie and lee has been a year and a month coming. i'm the suck! i know there's probably not many readers left who could give a flying shit what happens to this couple anymore, but those of you who are reading, i hope this chapter is worth your wait, if only fractionally. i've been working on this (actively) for about a week, reconstructing an old scene that had been written since nearly the beginning--which was nearly three years ago! talk about guilt trip. heh.

glad you're still with me, and i love you all!

monday, 30 june, 2008. 8:50pm.

-- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- --

My smile warm, I stepped towards him again simply to exchange a brief kiss good-bye before I left, appreciating the hoodie he'd lent me as I sprinted back for my truck and went home to be chewed out by my parents for being out so late.

-- -- -- (chapter begins)

Halfway between Thanksgiving and Christmas break, Sumi received a phone call just as she was getting home from work; I was the one who picked up and heard heavily accented English asking for Sumiko. Figuring it was just one of her Asian friends, I told her the phone was for her, and walked into the kitchen to grab a cold can of Dr. Pepper from the fridge.

Sumi was visibly tired, but she answered the phone with a cheerful, "Hello?" before her voice genuinely brightened as she fired off a rapid spiel in Japanese.

There was a moment's pause, then more Japanese--more sedate this time--and then she broke off completely, breath hitched painfully. That small noise made me turn, stunned at the look of stricken grief on my step-mother's face.

I took a step forward in alarm, but she found her voice again--trembling, but still holding together.

I watched her talk a bit more before she hung up and went over to the couch, hands coming to her face before her body began to quiver; I hurried over and touched her back, lowering onto the seat next to the woman I loved as I did my mom.


Her head shook, and when she spoke, her voice was thin and watery; "Favorite cous'n, he die. J'pan. I go, mus' go, fo' family."

I hesitated, but then got up and went to my Dad and Sumi's bedroom, where I knocked on the door, waiting to hear Dad's call before walking inside.

I wasn't sure what he was doing, looking in the closet for something, but I said, "Dad, Sumi got a call from Japan about a cousin dying. She's really upset."

His head snapped over, eyes wide; "What?"

I shuffled a bit, my voice lowering, "She's cryin' in the living room."

"Oh," was all he said before he walked past me and went into the living room; when I followed, I found him holding her tendering to his chest, muttering lowly into her ear as they sat there on the couch. I bit my lip but decided to give them space, walking to my bedroom and picking up a novel I borrowed off Heidi; she'd offered it because I'd once mentioned I liked Dean Koontz.


About an hour went by before a light knock had me glancing over at the open door, where Dad stood stroking his chin, face and eyes drawn.

I sat up, and he walked into the room, standing next to the bed before he actually sat down, something he rarely does.

There was a moment of silence before he finally rumbled out, "Well…Sumi is going to Japan day after next for the funeral, be gone about a week."

"Ok," I said, voice quiet.

There was another long pause, and he finally looked at me, opening his mouth to speak, hesitating, and then saying, "She really wants me to go with her, Reggie, and I just don't see how I can say no."

I was surprised, my mouth working a few times before I collected enough to say, "You can't say no, Dad, I know that. …And you can't afford to take me. Not all three of us."

I knew it logically, but it was still somewhat disappointing when he nodded; even for both to go, it's an unexpected strain on the budget. Dad makes quite a bit as supervisor, but I can already tell that Christmas will be a tight holiday this year. Still, I wish I could go to Japan, having never been there; Sumi always says that one day, she'll take me over to meet her family and see the sights. Guess it won't be this time.

"Do you need me to stay at Xander's?" I asked, and Dad sighed, rubbing a hand over his hair.

"I don't know Reggie, I think it really depends upon you. You did well for Thanksgiving… I trust you, son. If you think you'll be alright here alone, then…."

I thought about it, seriously contemplating before saying, "I think I'll just see how it goes; I'll stay here first, and go to Xander's if I need to. I'll be alright."

He smiled at me, fondness on his face and coloring his voice as he leaned over and brushed a rare kiss to my temple; "I know, Reggie."

I blushed at the unexpected affection, but grinned.

He stayed a moment more before he got up and went towards the door again; almost instinctively, I called, "The sky is blue, Dad."

He turned, mouth pulling into a wide grin; "You too, punk."

I laughed even as he walked away, but sobered as I thought to call Xander, knowing he'd want to know what was going on. As soon as I told him, he mumbled something and hung up, and I could only interpret that he was coming over as soon as possible.

I was right, and he went straight into Dad and Sumi's room, where she was laying down, and crawled into bed with her so he could hug and offer physical support for his mother.

If I didn't love Xander already, I'd have just from that.


I found Lee with Ben and Erin the following morning at a cafeteria table; they were all talking about the next get-together, wondering if they should wait until after the winter break to have it or try to squeeze it in before.

"Mom will shit kittens backwards if we have it at my house; last year, one of you fuckers broke her ornament from Holland, remember?" Ben spoke to both of them, but his eyes narrowed at Erin, who grinned and gave a sheepish shrug of his thin shoulders.

"Can't have it at my house, guys," Lee said, and both boys rolled their eyes.

"Yah, we know, doofus; they're never at your house."

I sat down, tired of standing there eavesdropping; Lee looked at me and smiled, my responding one warm and automatic.

"If we have it beginning of next week, it can be at my house," I offered, and all three stared at me in something akin to shock.

Erin was the first to break it, eagerly grinning as he pressed, "Really?"

I nodded, and Lee pursed his lips before asking, "Your Dad'll let you, just like that?"

I opened my mouth but then closed it, rethinking a split second before I finally said, "I'll tell you later, okay?"

He was puzzled, but accepted the statement as the other two started re-sketching plans that involved having the meeting at my house. Shen came and sat with me, the other two at the table glancing at the tall and silent Asian a few times before they began ignoring him and going back to their plans.

I ignored them all, pulling out some homework and scribbling until the bell rang, tugging Lee's hoodie sleeve in goodbye before walking with Shen down the hallway.

"Hey, Reggie…."

I looked at Shen; "Yeah?"

He mulled his words before he said, "Your mom--I mean, Sumi…she's ok?"

I shrugged and then gave a brief nod; "She'll be better once she leaves tomorrow morning, yeah. Xander tol' you, huh?"

He nodded, hands in his pockets and looking like a dark-haired scarecrow.

"You going to be staying with Xander while your folks r'gone?" he asked suddenly, hands still in his pockets as he stared down the hall.

"I dunno, probably not. Unless I get lonely, I guess."

He was quiet a moment; "You want me to come over any of those days? I mean…whether or not Xander's gonna be there. I mean…we're friends…aren't we?"

His voice was so hesitant and unsure that I stopped, causing him to slow and then turn back, finally looking me in the face.

"Shen…other than Xander, you're my best friend. I'd still want you around even if…you know, you two broke up. Okay?"

He nodded as one side of his mouth quirked up, a large hand reaching out and buffing me on the shoulder, and I rolled my eyes with a toothy smile. Not long afterwards, he broke off to head to class, and I did the same, buzzed from the solid camaraderie I've managed to build up in my ex.

I've kissed four boys in my life, and have done more with just two; Shen, and Lee. Although, I guess I should count the awkward fumbling I had with the second boy I ever kissed, Derek; he touched me through my pants but only once or twice and never enough to bring me off. He made things weird and stilted, and now, there's little wonder why we didn't stay together long.

Sitting down in my first hour, I was dismayed to discover that I'd completed the wrong worksheet--one that wasn't due until Monday--and that the one I should have finished was still at home. Great.

-- -- --

My family spent the night scurrying around making sure everything was ready, myself included, and I don't think any of us slept very well. Their flight was the earliest available, which meant that I had to drive them to the airport at five so they could have time to be on their flight leaving at six-fifteen. They were going to be on a plane for most of the day, having to switch probably three times before even starting over the ocean.

I zombied myself up at four-thirty in the morning, blinking wearily as I dressed and made sure my school shit was together before leaving my room and finding Dad and Sumi sharing a pot of coffee at the breakfast nook table. I grabbed a cup for myself and slumped into my chair, and Dad reached over and ruffled my Rasta curls, causing me to grunt into my coffee.

"Never were a mornin' kid, Reg," he teased, and I glared at him, unable to repute it because I was too grumpy to have the will.

I hate mornings with a passion.

They let me soak in my caffeine until a little after five, before the three of us were bustled from the house; I rode with them in the backseat of Dad's car, dozing against the window until I woke around the time we arrived at the airport. The building was brightly lit against the still-heavy darkness, and there were very few people milling about out front.

Even still, there were lines as we walked inside, and I waited with the pair and attempted to wake up more. Sumi was a bundle of nerves, her movements tight and fluttery as she fussed to make sure everything was in order for the millionth time.

Sparing her a soft smile, I reached out and pulled the short woman to my side, rubbing her shoulder comfortingly as I murmured, "Sumi, it'll be fine."

She sighed and turned the one-armed embrace into a full-fledged hug around my chest, squeezing tighter than a short Asian lady ought to.

"You are good boy, Reggie. Mother is looking at you, so proud, I know."

Her resolute affirmation struck me, but I hid it with another lopsided smile, shrugging my shoulders and standing a bit overly-cheerful when I was released from her grip. Dad seemed to see right through me, but he didn't mention it.

After they got their tickets and baggage in check, we left the line and headed over to a small lounge near the point where they have to go through security. There was about ten minute's idle time, so we sat there and ruminated silence for most of it.

Finally, Dad lumbered up; "Well, best we be goin', son."

I nodded, standing up and stepping into a tight hug, smelling his sharp aftershave and deodorant.

"Call me when you get there," I mumbled, and he hummed an affirmative before I let go and again hugged Sumi.

Then they were picking up their carry-on baggage and heading for the security check; I watched until they made it past the lines and walked down a hall out of my view. I lingered just a few minutes and finally walked back out to the car, the keys jingling in my palm, weightier than my own; they were hooked to Dad's heavy jackknife keychain, the one with attachments meant for emergencies on the road. He's had it since forever.

The sky was just turning light as I pulled from the airport sector drive and onto the interstate, and I headed back into the city; school starts in about an hour and a half, and I debated whether or not I wanted to head home first. In the end, my stomach decided for me, and I pulled into the parking lot of Denny's and ate a ham omelet, hash browns, an English muffin, and an extra side of pancakes.

With raspberry mango syrup.

I couldn't eat it all and took most of it home in a box, stopping off just long enough to put the food into the fridge before I head off to school in my truck, even though Dad's keys to the car clinked heavily in my pocket.

I just couldn't leave them behind.


It started snowing sometime around lunch, Heidi, Xander, Shen and I all guesstulating on how bad it would get by the time school let out. Shen figured it was going to snow all day and most of the night, his eyes flicking up to the sky visible from a window across the away as he made his prediction.

Xander teased him and asked if he was willing to wager money on it, and Shen snorted; "Don't be makin' bets you'll bitch about losing, Alex."

Xander pouted and stabbed me with my own chopstick when I laughed at him, having to rip the piece of wood from my grip to do so. The tip left a smear of ketchup on my sleeve--as I'd been eating French fries at the time--and I scowled as I wiped the condiment off my now-stained shirt.

The bastard didn't even apologize, his tongue flicking out in my direction before he let me have my chopstick back.

As the bell rang and we returned to class, I glanced outside once again and couldn't help but agree with Shen that it might snow for a long time.

And I was going to murder Xander if I had to smell ketchup the rest of the day.


Indeed, the snowfall was thicker as I drove my truck to my overly-empty house. I turned the television on first thing to dispel the lonely feeling that permeated the silence, and happened to catch the weather report. It forecasted that we'd get about five or six inches by the same time tomorrow, nearly half that falling during the night.

There were already school closings crossing the bottom of the screen, and though I waited to see mine, it wasn't there.

Sighing in disappointment, I got up and wandered into the kitchen, turning on the light and singing louder than I would have normally. The silence was oppressive, and I figured it'd be another couple of hours before Dad would call to let me know they arrived there safely.

I thought about going over to Xander's house for dinner and company, but didn't want to risk it in the snow and ice that was coming down, so settled for fixing myself a box of macaroni and cheese, eating half of it and putting away the rest for either tomorrow or some other meal. Hell, if I were completely honest with myself, I was sure I'd be eating it for a late night snack.

I was flipping channels when the phone finally rang, and Dad's voice was a relaxant for me as the tension I wasn't completely aware I'd carried melted away.

"You guys made it alright, I take it?"

"Yeah. There was a bit of trouble with the flight to the island, some delays, but we made it only an hour behind schedule. Staying with Sumiko's cousin's wife. Um, on Honshu, the mainland you know, and we're in Chiba…not far from Tokyo, I believe. Anyway, it's simply amazing here, I'll take a billion pictures. …You wouldn't believe the looks I get, Reg, I swear; I couldn't stick out more'n if I were blonde."

I laughed; "They love you, Dad, go with it."

He chuckled; "I'll do that. I ought to go, long distant is a bitch. Love you, Reggie."

"Yeah, love both of you, Dad."

We hung up and I felt loads better, able to watch television in peace as I finally ate the last bit of that macaroni. I again checked the school closings before I went to bed, and still didn't see mine.

Shit. School in the morning.


My alarm woke me up at six with its annoying blare, and I zombie-shuffled over and killed it by flipping the switch, voice a grumble as I bad-mouthed having to wake up so early, in a language indecipherable to anyone not sharing the same sentiment. I scratched myself through my shorts and moved over to the lamp, blindly waving my hand about until I found the switch and turned it on, light blaring against my gummed-shut eyelids before my eyes grew used to the light enough that I chanced opening them.

I dug out a random pair of jeans--that just happened to be moss green--and a yellow shirt boasting, "Ronnie's Burgers are HOTrageous!" My hair was all clumped together on one side of my head, and I ran fingers through it until satisfied enough to leave it be; Rasta curls don't take much maintenance beyond careful washing in the shower.

Done dressing, I walked from my room into the dark living room, which was strange enough to shock me into being more awake. I still turned on the television first thing, not liking how empty the house felt with just myself living in it; I have no idea what I'll do once I move out on my own, I swear.

The station with the news was on commercial, and I had to wait until the program came back on to see the scrolling band of school closings, which had expanded greatly in the night. Holding my breath, I was ecstatic to see my school roll down the bottom--closed all day.

Heck yes.

Switching off the television, I returned to my room and kicked off my pants, slumping into bed and curling back into the darkness I'd had to abandon too soon. I didn't plan on waking for another three hours at least.


As luck would have it, I woke up near nine-thirty to the sound of the doorbell. Rolling sleepily from bed and smacking sleep-thick lips, I stumbled back into my moss-green jeans and out my room, discreetly looking through the window just next to the door. Lee was standing on the porch rubbing his hands together and putting them beneath his arms, face tucked down into his hoodie that was pulled up tight around his face.

I quickly opened the door for him, grinning somewhat lopsidedly as I let him in and scanned the street and driveway.

"Lee, where's the car?"

He stomped into the house, shaking off snow that had accumulated on his shoes, jeans, and hoodie; "S'at home."

His voice was muffled before he loosened his hood and pushed it back, his cheeks bright red and his nose beginning to run; even as I watched, he embarrassedly wiped his sleeve across his nose, but I could only see that he looked near frozen.

"Don't tell me you walked."

He nodded; "Yeah, it's colder than I thought it was."

I rolled my eyes but offered a pleased grin that he'd come over at all; leaning in, I pressed a kiss to his cheek and jumped back from the frigidness of his skin.

"Jesus fuck, you're cold! C'mon, come lay down."

I led him back into my room, shimmying from my pants and getting back into the bed that was still warm, and he removed his hoodie, wet jeans, socks, and shoes before joining me. I jolted at his icy hands and legs, but as we lay there in comfortable silence, he grew warmer and I moved closer.

"You jerk, you shouldn't have walked here," I murmured in a tone that let him know I was glad he did.

He shifted because of my movement, his mouth somewhere close to my forehead as he hushly said, "Ann and Mya are already clawing at each other's tempers, and the twins got busted twice for throwing ice chunks at each other and the side of the house. My house is a zoo; I'd have braved five feet of snow to escape."

I snorted; "Ah, so it wasn't for the pleasure of my company."

His laughter was warm and cheerful, his mouth lowering to mine for a light touch before he said, "I'd brave snow over my head to be here with you."

I laughed, finding the remark cheesy, if not deeply gratifying. I just wouldn't ever tell him that.

The warmer he became, the warmer his affections, until I soon found myself with one of his larger thighs thrust up between my own and his mouth not surrendering mine anytime soon. I was wearing briefs, and his thigh only grazed my groin ever so slightly, but it was enough to have me blazingly erect, my dick scalding my skin where it was pushed to the side, unable to escape its confines.

I sent a hand blindly fumbling between us and touched his erection, his mouth pulling from mine as he gave a soft groaning version of my name, his thigh moving higher and making me gasp.

"Lee…ah…Lee I want you…."

My low murmuring had him stilling, his eyes finding mine; I was surprised by the wild fear that was there.


I swallowed; "I want you to fuck me."

His mouth worked as his face turned red, and my lips turned down; his reaction didn't seem very promising.

"Please?" My eyes begged him not to reject me; I don't think I'd be able to handle rejection.

He turned his eyes from me, silent for a long time before he grudgingly admitted, "I'm a virgin, Reggie, I ain't never had sex a'fore."

I had suspected it, but it still came as somewhat of a shock, enough to where my voice was more forceful than I'd wanted as I said, "But I'm not."

Seeing his flinch, I pressed my face against his chest, curling up as best as possible as I mumbled, "I think about you all the time, want you ever'day. …Sometimes it hurts at night, when I want you the most, n'you might not want me, and it…hurts…."

His body was stiff, unyielding, and slowly--ever so slowly--a hand came up and touched my head, fingers moving just slightly against my dreads. His whisper was so low I barely heard it even though it was pressed close to my ear, "Sometimes I look at you and don't know if what I think about is even possible, but I really, really want you too…."

I shuddered, my breath a ragged gasp before I pushed away from him and half sat up, his face frozen in shock before I reassured him with a grin. I leaned down and over for a brushing kiss before I crawled over him and out of bed.


The room was cold as I padded over to my dresser, pulling open my sock and underwear drawer and feeling around in the far back. A terribly unoriginal hiding place, but it was the only place I was certain I wouldn't ever lose something. Only, the awkward silence dragged on as I searched and couldn't find it, only to finally see my tube of lubricant laying on top of the dresser and beneath a small mound of socks; I forgot I pulled it out when searching for a particular pair the other day.

Flushing slightly, I held up the tube and Lee's face turned bright pink as he realized what it was, and its purpose. Even still, my step had a cheerful bounce to it as I returned to the bed and pushed him onto his back, straddling his stomach and leaning down for some deep kisses.

His hands found my thighs and moved up to my waist, sunk beneath my shirt and hot against my cooling skin. When I pulled back again, my breath was heavy as I self-consciously removed my shirt; it had never really been an issue for me to be shirtless around him before, but the heat of his eyes made me nervous, despite seeing his mouth pull into an appreciative grin.

"Your skin has got to be…the best color I've ever seen," he finally stated, and my face heated up with a blush even he could see, his low laughter making me grin.

"Do you find black guys sexy, or jes' me?" I teased, and that same playful light came into his eyes in response.

"Oh, didn't I say? I got five more just like you what sleep 'neath my bed ever' night. I just pop one out when I feel the need."

I gave a sage nod before leaning down and nipping his shoulder through his shirt, causing him to jump from the unexpected maneuver. He relaxed into the moist kisses I pressed to his jaw line in shallow apology, feeling faint stubble against the velvet of my lips but wasn't bothered by the sensation; it wasn't harsh or prickly, more soft than anything.

My clothed erection pressed against his belly with my movements, and he finally groaned my name and touched it, fingers boldly demanding as he said, "Please…."

My smirk was somewhat coy as I nodded, sitting up and getting off him so I could shimmy out of my underwear, then remained kneeling beside him on the bed, his eyes scalding as they raked me up and down. This is the first I've ever been completely naked with him, and all doubts I might have had fell away by the way he automatically reached down and pressed against the base of his dick through his briefs.

"Like it?" I asked lowly, and he could only nod.

He didn't even protest when I reached over and began tugging at his briefs, encouraging him to lift his hips so I could work the material down his ample thighs and ass, finally dropping them on the floor near his jeans and shoes. If he was self-conscious, it wasn't enough to cause him great discomfort; maybe it had something to do with the fascinated way he eyed my form that allowed him to forget most everything else.

I knew I was somewhat clinical in the way I opened the tube and applied the lubricant to my fingers, leaning forward and over him as I reached back and pressed those greased fingers around my entrance and finally inside, my eyelids lowering as I gave a soft grunt.

"Oh my lord, you're not…you are," his breathy exclamation trailed off as he stared, eyes wide.

Once I got it best I could, I pulled my hand away and leaned closer to him, pressing a kiss to his cheek before I murmured, "Finish up for me?"

He didn't need an explanation, although his face turned a bright red as I gave him the lube and wordlessly instructed him how to do it. Soon enough, his fingers tentatively entered my ass, and the nerve endings there flared in ways they hadn't for my fingers alone. He thrust and twisted until I was stretched and ready, my breath already gasping with lust.

"Th-that's good, Lee," I finally told him, and shuddered as his fingers were regretfully removed.

After collecting my personal self, I shifted to my knees and again straddled him, this time sitting on his lower thighs as I took my time applying lube to my palms before wrapping both hands around his dark-colored erection, the tip straining and ready…overly ready. I kept my touches slow and sensual, and he finally let out a keening cry of my name, pleading with me to stop torturing him; his face and voice was enough to make up my mind, even though I leaned down and flicked my tongue just over the head. It didn't taste very good, as my lube isn't meant to be edible although it won't kill you, but his reaction was off the charts.

I didn't give him time to rethink this through before I was clambering up and positioning myself over his erection, his eyes wide as he watched my every cautious movement. It'd been a long time, and I could feel how tight I was despite the stretching and bit of foreplay; my face screwed up as I pushed downwards until breached, giving a grunt of effort and having to still a moment before continuing until fully seated.

Once I was able to, I moved with less caution, and Lee groaned deep and loud, calling, "Oh fuck, it's…fuck…!"

I chuckled; "Right."

The tight, tingling, full sensation was the one I'd been aching for, but as satisfying as it was, it wasn't near enough; I just didn't have much experience in the Cowboy position, and couldn't keep up a decent angle and rhythm, my movements disjointed. Not to mention my thighs were on fire.

"Reggie," Lee suddenly said, startling me into pausing.

"I want to…I mean, do you think you want to…," he bit his lip as he trailed off, the blush that hadn't ever left his cheeks rebounding with full force.

"You want to switch positions?" I guessed, unable to keep the hopeful tone from my voice.

He nodded, relieved that I'd guessed correctly, and a huge grin split my face as I pulled off and moved to his side, leaning over and giving him a deep kiss in gratitude. It quickly devolved into something heavier, and both of us were breathless as I finally lay back and allowed him to get to his knees between mine. I was able to pull my legs back to my chest, but he made it easier for me by moving so my legs could rest on his shoulders; a bit awkward, but not such a strain on the backs of my thighs.

He was clumsy on the re-entry, and I winced and hissed, "Ah, slower."

"Fuck, I'm sorry, I just…," he trailed off in helplessness but seemed unable to go any slower than he already was.

In a bout of desperation, I touched his upper chest and made him pause, my voice strained as I lowly asked, "Take off yer shirt?"

He didn't even hesitate, giving a nod and pulling back just enough that my legs dropped from his shoulders, one hand coming up to pull his shirt from his back and over his head before dropping the article next to the bed. He had a farmer's tan, but he still looked fuckin' sexy, my lips twisting up on one side.

"M'kay," I breathed, and he grinned, moving back into position.

I found it easier for me to leave my legs down, my knees hugging his sides as I waited for him to hit that perfect erogenous zone deep inside…he was always just shy of the mark, until he thrust especially deep and hit it straight on, my body tightening up with a soul-wrenching groan.

"Fuck, Reg…." His voice was shaky with awe and pride that something he had done had pulled such a involuntarily strong reaction from me, and though it took him a few near-misses, he managed to find a groove that allowed him to keep striking that zone for me.

Before long, my long fingers were twisted up within the blankets near my head, my muscles taught as expletives of every nature spilled past my lips; I'm always more vocal the closer to orgasm I get, and Lee had me teetering for a good five or ten minutes--though it felt like a torturous twenty from my body's perspective.

When I finally came, I whimpered and cried at the white-hot lava that engulfed my body, spasms occurring outside and within; the tightened grip must have set him off as well, because he came not after me, which was simply amazing. I wasn't truly aware of his, as I was still floating within a lethargic coma just after mine--or rather, the closest thing to being comatose.

His breaths were near-sobbing afterwards, and we finally moved apart and lay in damp silence for a few minutes before he could manage to say, "You're really vocal, you know that?"

I sighed, not really all that apologetic as I reached up with lube-sticky fingers to rub away an itch just above my eye; "I'm sorry."

Giving off a low hum, he turned and wound his left arm across my abdomen, pulling us a bit closer together as he murmured, "Nothin' to be sorry for."

Stretching, I purposely pressed against him and loved how he wrapped more of his body over mine, as if he needed my touch as much as I was giving it. He gave a low giggle at the realization of what we'd just done, and reached out with a hand so he could pull my face forward enough for him to kiss me.

Our 'moment', however, was interrupted by my phone abruptly ringing, startling both of us into jumping and staring at the interloping noise-maker. Once I ascertained that, yes, it was my phone, I groaned and shifted away from it, only to have it ring for another six times.

I'd hoped Xander would give up and let it die, but after the ninth, I sighed and crawled over Lee so I could answer the phone, using his chest as a prop for my upper torso.

"What the fuck do ya want?" I growled, shifting the phone to my other ear so I could slump against Lee and have him continue using one hand to draw patterns on my arm.

"Have ya finished, or are ya guys just takin' a breather?"

Xander's knowingly teasing voice shot me upright, my heart jolted in my chest as I asked, "Where are you?"

He laughed; "In your kitchen. …I just…damn, Reggie, you made Shen blush."

Mortified beyond belief, I still narrowed my eyes as I ground out, "Xander, I'm giving you ten minutes, or so help me, I'll--"

"But I want to go out for breakfast!" he whined, attempting to sound pitiful and unable to fully pull it off with the glee dripping from every pore and positively saturating his voice.

I sighed and closed my eyes; "It's ten-thirty, most places are going to be switching to lunch, and it's snowin…and why are you out in it?!"

He pshaw'd; "It ain't bad out, and I was hungry! And how were we supposed to know you were gonna be having a tumble with the Lee-boy, huh?!"

There was a long pause, and I finally stated, "It wasn't just a tumble."

"Oh, then what else was it?"

I pinched the bridge of my nose; "I don't know, god! This isn't the time to be having this conversation!"

"I know, I'm hungry!"

Lee's hand brushed along my spine, and I glanced back at him as he mouthed, 'What does he want?!'

I rolled my eyes, and said into the phone, "Fine, just give us fifteen minutes to shower and dress, and we'll go out somewhere n'eat."


"Fuckin' asshole."

He snickered, and I hung up the phone and groaned, slumping bonelessly back onto Lee and causing him to 'oomph.'

My boyfriend shunted me around until we were both comfortable, and he admitted, "I'm not really all-fired to get up and take off somewhere with Xander--and I'm assuming--Shen."

I winced; "Well, seein' as how they're in my kitchen as we speak…we don't have much choice. Xander has had the ability to pick my lock since the sixth grade."

"What?! They're here?!"

I nodded somewhat sheepishly; "I forgot to mention that, didn't I?"

He snorted; "Yeah, I'll say so. Oh my god…how long have they been here?"

"Um…I dunno, but long enough."

"Oh god…," he moaned, twisting away and burrowing his face into the blanket to hide his steam-engine-red blush.

"Lee, it's ok. …I mean, they understand."

He groaned; "It's so fucking embarrassing! Your brother and his boyfriend," he looked at me slightly, "your ex… hearing us as we…oh god."

Uncomfortable, I pointed out, "You're not the one who was yelling whatever, I was."

Then, moving closer to his ear and planting a kiss just below his earlobe, I breathed, "Because, you are fuckin' great at what you do. That's nothin' to be embarrassed about…it's kinda cool that anyone could hear you're the best lover I ever had."

When I pulled away, he stared at me with wide, questioning eyes, "You mean that?"

I nodded just once, too embarrassed by the admission to do anything other than press a small kiss to his lips, allowing him to turn it into a silky-lusty swirling of tongues, our breath again short when we broke apart. I always forget that I can still breath when he kisses me.

I hadn't lied to him at all about the 'best lover' bit; with Shen, sex had been all lust and pleasure, hot like wasabi. There hadn't been much passion involved, not like it'd been with Lee, even at its most lustful and rutting. There had been something different, and it was already inducing a craving for another go, my body suggesting that we had indeed been merely 'taking a breather', as Xander put it.

When I pulled away from Lee completely, I was pleased to see his crestfallen regret, but tapped him on the nose as I said, "We really need to get outta here and into the shower, I wasn't kidding about Xander picking the lock."

I crawled over him and off the bed, hunting about for my clothes, though most of them were in a heap nearby. I heard him sigh and the mattress grumble as he did the same, and I pulled my jeans on without bothering to put on some underwear first.

Just about to fasten the top button of my pants, I was pleasantly startled to feel arms wrap around my midsection from behind, Lee's naked stomach and chest comfortably pressing against my back as he pulled us together.

"You're beautiful," he cautiously whispered, as if unsure how I'd react, but having to say it anyway.

I melted back against him with a hum, and he took that to mean it was ok for his mouth to find the concave of my neck and shoulder, brushing wet kisses to the skin before he wandered over to my pulse and bit down, sending a searing rush of more sex through my system. My god, where'd he learn that?!

Biting back an indulgent moan, I pressed my palm against his face and pushed him away from me, turning so I was facing him and out of his far-too-tempting embrace.

"Ugh, cut it out, jerk," I scolded, and he offered a lopsided grin that had me rolling my eyes.

After he pulled on the remainder of his clothing, I led us out of my room, not bothering to wear a shirt; clouded-white semen was streaked across my belly, some of it even seeped in the concave of my navel. It was already starting to dry and itch. In the hallway, it was easy to hear that Xander had helped himself to the cable television, Spongebob sounding off, followed by the insane cackling of my brother, and accompanied moments later by the deeper chuckle of Shen. I shook my head with a grin, wondering if Xander had to fight his boyfriend to watch it or if the Chinaman went along willingly. He never would with me.

Instead of dragging Lee in the bathroom at the end of the hall, I led him into Dad and Sumi's room--which seemed unnaturally still and empty having not had their presence for only two days--and into their master bath. Their shower was big enough for a dual effort, and I turned to him and raised a shoulder.

"Why waste water and time?"

He snickered, but didn't object, and that's how I found myself alone and fully naked with him for the second time within the space of an hour as we entered the shower together. The specialized shampoo for my Rasta curls was in the other bathroom, so I kept my head free of the water but soaped down the rest of my body before allowing him to do the same to himself.

I watched as he spread soap wherever he deemed necessary…which included his crotch in abundance, and he blushed beneath the weight of my constant stare as he touched himself back into semi-plumpness. I love his blush; I've gotten him used to so very much, and yet, his blush has remained, and I rather hope it never goes away. I definitely feel it's the best thing about his shy nature.

As preoccupied with my thoughts as I was, I was startled when he moved close and kissed me with damp lips from where he'd washed his face; the pad of his thumb slid over the corner of my mouth when he pulled away, our gazes caught together.

"What was that for?" I asked, flustered warmth heating my face enough that I was sure he could feel it against his hand.

He smirked; "You were moonin' away in outer space. Just thought you could use a pull back to reality."

I ducked my head, voice caustic as I muttered, "Jerk," but was countered by my smile.

After he shut the water off, I put a hand to his shoulder and told him, "Thanks, babe," and left the shower, standing on the mat as I dried off with a clean towel. Looking back, I saw him follow me, but his face was shadowed with a strange emotion, causing me to pause even though I handed him a towel.

"What is it?"

"…Please don't call me that."

His tone was soft but firm, and I bit back a question and simply nodded, "Alright."

Our return to my room was uneventful, and I redressed in my moss-green jeans and yellow shirt, causing him to snort as he read the exclamation of "HOTrageous!" emblazoned in black lettering across my front. His clothing was all the same as before, and he grimaced as he put his legs into the wet jean bottoms before he could pull on socks and shoes.

When we joined Xander and Shen in the living room, Lee's face was once again burning brightly, but nobody called attention to it other than Xander snarking that we took twenty minutes and he'd starved to death in the meantime. I flipped him off and tackled him on the couch, where Xander begged Shen or Lee for help and received nothing but laughter.

There was no weirdness between us as we went out and acted our usual goofy selves at IHOP--for their twenty-four-hour breakfasts--and even Lee grew to where he forgot that his sexual status had changed. There was just a dull ache to remind me, and eventually, even I became unaware of its presence.

But I never forgot how good it'd been. Not once.

-- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- --

a/n: conclusione del capitolo. ...o, final del capítulo. :laughs: ah, the simple things are so amusing.