"Sourpuss," Riley says, lounging on the expensive leather chaise. "You're back early."
Lemon flips him off, choosing the uncomfortable wingback chair on the other side of the expansive room.
"Hey, careful," Riley snaps, pointing a warning finger in Lemon's direction, specifically at the way he sat down. "When you're the one buying the furniture, you can treat it whatever way you want."
Lemon resists the urge to flip his stepbrother off again. "If I had money, I'd buy better furniture than this."
"Too bad you don't have any then," Riley says, stretching his legs out on the chaise and propping his arms behind his head. "By the way, how's your cat?"
"Fine," Lemon says, pursing his lips as he tries to find a more comfortable position in an impossible piece of furniture. "Mr. Sniffles is fine."
"See, I don't believe you," Riley says, bringing his arms back down to rest on the arms of the chaise. "Mostly because the vet called."
"What the fuck?" Lemon says, jumping to his feet and glaring at Riley. "That's private!"
"Glad I did, though," Riley continues, ignoring Lemon's outburst. "Apparently the poor thing's diabetic. If I hadn't answered, who knows how much longer the poor thing would've been suffering."
"I—is he okay?" Lemon asks, biting the corner of his lip in worry. Mr. Sniffles is the only one who listens to all his problems, especially since his mom had married Rich.
"He's okay," Riley says, sliding his feet to rest on the expensive Persian carpet. The room was recently redecorated after Rich had passed away a few weeks ago, leaving the insufferable Riley sole heir to his millions of millions.
"I thought you hated cats," Lemon says, wondering already when Mr. Sniffles could come home.
"I don't hate—besides, he's important to you," Riley says, with a soft look that makes Lemon uncomfortable all the way down to his toes.
"Don't worry," Riley continues, aiming a devilish smile to Lemon that's absolutely ridiculous in its attractiveness. "We can figure out a payment plan."
"I—what?" Lemon blinks, startled by what he heard. "Are you insane?"
"Your Mr. Sniffles has racked up quite the medical bill," Riley says, making a disapproving noise back in his throat. "Pity, really."
"I—you can't," Lemon says, even though he knows that Riley can and will. "I don't have any money!"
"You're going to college," Riley says, dropping his eyes to his perfectly maintained fingernails and rubbing them against the sleeve of his shirt. "Doesn't it cost money to do that?"
"I'm on scholarship," Lemon says, panic drowning the weird feelings he has for Riley. "And you're rich. What do you want from me?"
"You can't pay, hmm?" Riley makes the disappointed noise again, getting to his feet and brushing his slacks free of imaginary wrinkles. "Seems like I'll have to make you an offer."
Lemon stares at Riley, clenching his hands into fists when he takes in Riley's self assured smirk and the way his hair falls into his eyes in casual abandon. He's like Jude fucking Law, and Lemon hates Jude fucking Law.
"It's not so bad," Riley says, taking a step closer and hesitating.
Belatedly, Lemon realizes he's probably missed Riley's offer to settle the debt. He's not willing to tell Riley, of course, because Riley's just the kind of asshole to rub it in even more than he already has.
Riley closes the distance between them until he's practically pressing the buttons on his Thomas Pink shirt to the front of Lemon's tee.
"I, uh, what are you doing?" Lemon asks, having to clear his throat before getting it out. From here, he can tell that Riley's eyes are a shade or two darker than Jude Law's, not that he's noticing either one of them.
"You should really think about it," Riley says, his voice soft. "Maybe long enough for Mr. Sniffles to get worse?"
"Asshole," Lemon says, not bothering to keep his voice down. "Fine. Whatever."
"Not the resounding yes, Riley, of course yes," Riley says, sounding amused. "But I'll deal."
"Fine," Lemon says warily, watching Riley's expression as he slowly realizes that Lemon has no idea what he's just agreed to.
"I'm thinking of a June wedding," Riley says, like Lemon's on the same page. The look in his eyes is the only sign that he knows any different.
"What the hell?" Lemon says, and finally takes a step away from Riley. "What are you talking about?"
"You and me," Riley says, raising a hand to wipe at his grinning mouth. "I thought you'd make the perfect Mrs. Winterfields."
"I'm not making anything," Lemon denies, taking another step back. "Are you fucking insane?"
"Crazy for you, baby," Riley coos, holding a straight face long enough for Lemon to panic, then breaking out into a grin. "Fair trade, Sourpuss. You get your cat, I get married and keep my millions."
"To which I'm going to be a part of," Lemon says, even though the money doesn't' matter to him. He's more interested in love, but it looks like Riley was about to ruin yet another part of his life.
"If you want," Riley says. "In all honestly, it's a pretty good deal."
"Except for the fact where I'll be shackled to you for the rest of my life," Lemon says, dropping heavily back down onto the wingback and covering his face with his hands.
"Try not to think of it like that," Riley says, house slippers making a soft noise as he moves close enough to drop a hand onto Lemon's shoulder. "Think of it as a—"
"A mistake," Lemon mumbles into his palms, lifting his face after a moment. "Today's the fifth of June."
"How's the eleventh sound?" Riley asks cheerfully, squeezing Lemon's shoulder once before moving his hand away. "Luckily no one's going to be asking about how we met or anything like that."
Lemon presses his hands back over his face. "Jude fucking Law."
Exactly one week after they got married, Lemon finds out that he might have underestimated his new husband. It's not like he and Riley ever really talked before they got married, and it's not like they've talked since.
That's too easy, Lemon tells himself, and it's also exactly what Riley would want. He doesn't want to do what Riley wants, either. It's bad enough that Riley was thoughtful and hired a nurse to help out with Mr. Sniffles, giving him his shots in the morning because the thought of it still makes Lemon squeamish.
Thing is, it's boring being rich. They hadn't even had a ridiculous expensive and romantic honeymoon—not that he's complaining, but it's the principle of the thing—and there's nothing to do in mid-June when he's loaded.
Also, he'd had to quit his job, because they wouldn't let him take a day off. It's a total bitch. His frigging wedding day and everything, and they'd expected him to come in and work. So Riley told him to quit and Lemon did, but not because Riley got this look.
That's another, actually, because Lemon hasn't been rich for very long, but even he knows that it's impossible to plan a high society event in six days, let alone one on the scale of their wedding.
Lemon still isn't sure how Riley found an Elton John impersonator on such short notice, and Riley had gotten all teary at the string quartet's rendition of Your Song, no matter how much he denied it.
"Hey, Sourpuss," Riley says, knocking on the door to the study before stepping inside. "I'm taking the rest of the day off."
"Whatever," Lemon says, taking a moment to save the game of the Sims that he's playing.
"What're you doing?" Riley asks, sounding interested as he comes into the room.
"Absolutely nothing," Lemon mutters, trying to flip out of the house so Riley can't see that his Sims look eerily like the two of them.
"What is this?" Riley prods at Lemon's shoulder, smelling like the expensive after-shave Lemon had nearly knocked off the bathroom sink that morning. "That looks like you."
"It's nothing," Lemon says, flinching away from Riley's touch and rolling his chair to the right. "Did you get bored being rich?"
"What?" Riley laughs, unsure of how to take Lemon's question. "No, I'm home because I missed you."
Lemon goes red, feeling the heat of his blush on his ears and down the back of his neck. Riley traces his fingers just above the collar of his shirt, so Lemon knows that Riley sees it.
"Do you want to do something?" Riley asks, his fingers still stroking Lemon's neck. "We could go out for dinner."
"No," Lemon says, but he can't move away from Riley's hand. "Appearing in public was not part of the deal."
"The deal was you'd marry me," Riley says. "I'd hate to have to divorce you because of irreconcilable differences."
Lemon grimaces, biting back a few choice words and finally pulling way from Riley's touch.
"I'll even let you choose the place," Riley says enticingly, trying to convince Lemon. "You can drive the Beemer, too."
"Tempting," Lemon says sarcastically, pushing back from the computer desk and hoping Riley's still standing right behind him.
He's not, too busy tugging on his tie from a few feet away. "Well?"
"I'm busy," Lemon lies, turning his back to Riley so he doesn't figure out that it's not the truth.
Riley snorts, the tie making a soft noise as it drops to the floor. "With what?"
"Stuff," Lemon says.
"I don't believe you," Riley tells him, and Lemon chances a look over his shoulder to see Riley grinning at him, undoing the cufflinks from his shirt.
"Fine, whatever," Lemon says.
"You don't do this much, do you?" Riley asks, moving closer to set his solid gold cufflinks on the computer desk.
"Do what?" Lemon turns and folds his arms over his chest, aiming for casually unimpressed.
Judging by the smirk on Riley's face, he's not doing a very good job. "Date. You didn't date much, did you?"
"Neither did you," Lemon points out grumpily, wondering why Riley's making a big deal out of it now. "We didn't date before we got married."
"We got married because we were already so in love," Riley says dryly, the words not as convincing as they were on their wedding day. "Don't you remember?"
Lemon snorts. "Whatever."
"Don't say that," Riley tells him, and backs Lemon up against the wall of the study. "You sound like an idiot."
"So send me for vocal training," Lemon says. "So I don't embarrass you and your money."
"That's an idea," Riley says softly, bringing one hand up to hold Lemon's jaw still. "But I think you're the one embarrassed of me and my money."
"Whatever," Lemon says, choosing his words carefully.
"That's it," Riley tells him, and closes the distance between them with his fingers tight around Lemon's chin and his mouth brushing against Lemon's softly.
Lemon doesn't try to get away, head still pinned by Riley's hand as his mouth.
Riley snorts, his breath warm against the side of Lemon's cheek. "If I had known this was all it took to get you to settle down, I would've married you a long time ago."
"We're going out for KFC," Lemon says suddenly, and Riley's eyes flare with amusement as he processes what Lemon's said.
"Are we now?" Riley asks, sliding his hand over Lemon's clean-shaven jaw and settling at the bottom of his neck. "Are we still taking the Beemer?"
"Of course we are," Lemon says, sniffing disdainfully. "We're going to the KFC with the Big Chicken."
"Of course we are," Riley echoes, but Lemon's not pulling away from him anymore, so he really doesn't mind the trip. Even if there's no way they'll make it in time for dinner.