Relationships and their starts are awkward much of the time. There is that bright red blushing of the first moment your hands touch and both your fingers are clasped together. There is that fluttering in your heart whenever the person hugs you tightly, like they never want to let you go. There is that gasp of amazement when your lips first touch and you are kissing that person, sparks flying about your mind.
None of the beginning was awkward for Alfred and Arthur. They were comfortable with each other immediately. Being in public together was difficult. They could not do any of the typical couple things. They couldn't really be seen together, especially at school, either. In fact, Alfred still had to pretend to date the girl he referred to as The Girlfriend. He had to kiss her and hold her like he used to, to keep up the act. He noticed Arthur's sideways glare of anger whenever he saw Alfred and The Girlfriend together. He always felt his stomach sink when this happen. He hated seeing Arthur look at him like that.
The Girlfriend was none the wiser to Arthur and Alfred's relationship. In fact, she was completely oblivious to her own sinking relation-shit, (as Alfred called it, due to his unhappiness with her). The Girlfriend never really noticed that they didn't hang out anymore, or really even talk. In fact, he outright avoided her at lunch. It wasn't until he actually told her that they needed some time apart that she realized the deterioration that had been occurring.
She agreed wholeheartedly then, and the two of them remained friends afterwards. Alfred's other friends weren't very surprised at their break up and took everything in rather quickly, adapting instantaneously. They still poked fun at Arthur in the mornings, although the hilarity had worn off. Alfred was glad for this. His complaints over their teasing had remained caught in his throat. Arthur and Alfred hung out after school as normal, joking with each other on their way to Alfred's house.
They didn't go to Arthur's house anymore. Arthur himself didn't even go home most days. He stayed in Alfred's apartment, sleeping in the guest room. Alfred didn't mind at all. He was glad to have Arthur staying with him, safe and far away from Allistor.
In the comfort of Alfred's home, they would often lie on the couch, Arthur pressed against Alfred, Alfred's arm securely around Arthur's waist. They progressed slowly. At first, they just lay together, watching television, comfortable with just being together. But as time progressed, Arthur would often turn his head upward, pressing his lips against Alfred's. They would kiss for a long while, their lips pushing and pulling against each other, like the ocean tides, laughing softly against each other's lips or sighing quietly, causing one of them to smirk at the other. If Arthur didn't turn his head, Alfred would plant kisses, trailing from the base of Arthur’s neck to the outline of his jaw.
Arthur always shivered during this, not because he was cold, but because of the sudden tingle that swept through him when Alfred made his way up his neck. His kisses were like fire, burning pleasantly across his neck. Arthur had never had anything like he had with Alfred in his life.
Arthur always had to leave to go home at some point, though, to make sure his brother was alright or to get clothing or to get some form of supplies from his house. Those times passed Alfred by in a flurry of pacing and worry. Most times, Arthur came back without a scratch, having successfully snuck in and out of his house. But other times, Arthur's face or torso had a telltale sign of abuse on it. Alfred would always frown and immediately begin to help him.
The worst time was when he came home one Sunday night, about three months after they’d been dating, wincing and holding his side. Alfred knew he was obviously injured. "What'd he do?" Alfred asked, clenching his fists and watching Arthur walk into the house. He quickly went behind Arthur and closed the door as gently as he could manage in his anger. "Nothing, Alfred. It's fine. He just threw a punch." Alfred eyed him suspiciously. "Are you sure?"
Arthur nodded. "I'm fine." He forced a smile and wobbled toward the bathroom. Alfred waited until he had closed the door then quickly pushed himself up against the bathroom door. He heard Arthur hiss through his teeth. "Damn, it's worse than I thought," Arthur mumbled to himself. Alfred continued listening, hearing Arthur fumble for antiseptic material and a bandage.
After a short time of listening, Alfred decided to leave him be, feeling there was nothing he could do. Arthur didn't want his help, so if he burst into the bathroom, he'd just make him angry. He wandered into his own room, leaving the door open. Alfred left the main light of his room off, although the soft lighting from the living room still shone dimly in his room. He lay on his back, listening to the water running in the bathroom; probably Arthur washing out whatever wound Allistor had given him.
Ten minutes later, Alfred heard the creak of the bathroom door opening and the sound of bare feet padding along his apartment floor. Alfred had his eyes closed, wishing only to study the backs of his eyelids and try to stop imagining how horrible Arthur's wound could be. There was a sudden, swift knock on his open door. Alfred didn't open his eyes, although he did speak.
"Yeah?" There was silence for a moment. Alfred could picture the blond Brit nervously wringing his hands. "Can I lie down next to you? I'm too tired to go to my room." Alfred knew this was a lie. Arthur just wanted to be comforted and warmed by Alfred's touch. He felt his features soften and he opened his eyes slightly, watching Arthur’s silhouette for a moment before closing his eyes again. "Yeah," he murmured softly. Arthur shuffled into the room. Alfred felt the weight shift on the bed and a sudden warmth on the left side of his body. Arthur laid his head on Alfred's chest and sighed.
"For being an idiot. For always going back to Allistor."
"It's alright. I just worry." Arthur traced absent minded circles on Alfred's stomach. Although he was clothed, Alfred could feel Arthur's touch as if his midsection were bare. He bit his lip, trying not to shiver. He felt Arthur blink slowly, his eye lashes moving against his chest. "I know. It's not right. I just... I feel like I deserve it. All the punches he throws, I deserve every single one." Alfred opened on eye and stared at Arthur's blond hair, which seemed pale white in the dimness. "Why?"
Arthur laughed softly, dismissing his statement. Alfred felt his movements on the side of his body, vibrating through him. He allowed himself to shiver, but only slightly. "One day I'll tell you. I've done a lot of things that I regret. Too many things." Alfred heaved himself up, reclining against the head board. Arthur got up with him, looking back at him. "What's wrong?" Alfred shrugged. "Nothing." Arthur frowned. "Fine. Don't tell me." Arthur pouted afterwards, making Alfred chuckle. "You look like a fish." Arthur's pout grew. "I am not a fish, you git!"
Alfred laughed again. He cupped Arthur's chin and smirked. "It's also adorable." Arthur's cheeks turned florid. "S-Shut up," Arthur stuttered, averting his eyes from Alfred's. He wrapped an arm around his waist and pulled him close. "Gladly," Alfred murmured against Arthur's lips, leaning forward and kissing him. The kiss was gentle, like most of the other kisses they had shared. But soon, it turned passionate, lustful. Alfred ran his tongue along Arthur's bottom lip, attempting to his mouth open. Arthur smirked and kept his mouth shut.
Alfred traced a hand down Arthur's side and squeezed Arthur's thigh. Arthur gasped and Alfred took the opportunity. He pushed his tongue into Arthur's mouth. Arthur moaned softly into the kiss, encouraging Alfred further. The hand that had squeezing Arthur's thigh made its way upward again, towards the hem of Arthur's t-shirt, (technically, it was Alfred's t-shirt, but Arthur was borrowing it). Alfred began pushing Arthur's shirt up, tracing his fingers along the skin of Arthur's stomach. Arthur seemed to wake up at his touch. "No," he whispered. "Not yet." He grabbed Alfred's hands and intertwined his fingers with Alfred's. "Not yet," he repeated, kissing Alfred's cheek quickly, his own cheeks bright red in the darkness.
Alfred nodded. He knew Arthur was right. They shouldn't rush this. Besides, Alfred was still afraid of this new, unknown desire; the desire to keep someone by his side for as long as he existed, the desire to keep a person of the same sex by his side. Slowly, they went back to lying peacefully on the bed, their bodies intertwining, twisting together and clutching each other in the attempt to keep together. They fell asleep quickly. Just on the edge of his consciousness, however, something itched in Alfred's mind. Arthur's words from earlier echoed in his mind. They bothered him more than they should.
"I've done a lot of things I regret. Too many things."
A/N: Yo guys~! Um, well, I'm really sorry I didn't publish this sooner. I meant to, but I've been going through a lot of stuff lately. To sum it up: E.O.C's/Finals/Standardized Tests suck. Also, boyfriends. Boyfriends suck too. Like, royally. I'm glad not to have one anymore. God, it's like a weight lifted from my shoulders. Anyway, I'll try to publish this next chapter soon. Don't be surprised if it takes a week or two or more. Like, I probably won't be too busy after this week. Hopefully.... Anyway, Sayonara for now!