Josh leant lazily against the doorframe to Kevin's room, smirking slightly.
"Whatcha doing, darkness?" He teased, his amused smile growing.
"Up until now, successfully avoiding you." Kevin rolled his eyes, making his way over to the doorway. "What are you doing here, Josh?" Josh shrugged, biting his lip and trailing his eyes over Kevin's body. Kevin shifted uncomfortably.
"Listen, I got some stuff I gotta do, so if you're done here-"
"Oh, come on!" Josh laughed. "What's your issue with me?"
"Seriously? You don't see it?" Kevin raised his eyebrows.
"Whatever." Josh pushed his way into the room and sat down on the bed. "You wanna talk?"
"No- I mean, what- Why would I even- No, Josh. Just leave me alone." Kevin remained by the open door, his eyebrows still raised.
"Oh, relax! How about you ditch the adorable, moody emo routine and try a smile?" Josh smirked, pushing his hair from his eyes.
"Did you just call me adorable?" Kevin frowned.
"Just sit with me, yeah?" Josh ignored Kevin's question. Of course he called him adorable. He was adorable.
"I'm not emo." Kevin mumbled, before sighing and pushing the door closed. As he made his way over to the bed, he felt his heart rate increase, though he couldn't quite understand why. He dropped heavily onto the bed beside Josh.
"Do you wish you could touch me?" Josh asked quickly, the words escaping his lips before he could stop them. "I mean, people. Not just me. Do you wish you could have skin to skin contact?"
"Well, yeah. Of course, I do. Wouldn't you, if you were me?"
"What if I told you I could fix it?" Josh lowered his voice slightly.
"How, Josh? How could you possibly help me?" Kevin's words adopted a harsh tone.
"Take your gloves off." Josh ordered, his voice calm and steadily.
"No. Why do you think you can tell me what to-"
"Do it. I want to try something." There was a strange, comforting hint in Josh's voice that confused both of them a little. Kevin sighed quietly and peeled the gloves from his hands cautiously.
"Okay. Now what?" He looked down at his hands, avoiding eye contact with the golden skinned mutant beside him.
"Take my hand." Josh held a hand out between them, causing Kevin to pull back, a panicked look in his eyes.
"No way! Are you crazy?! I mean, you're not my best friend or anything, but I don't want to- I might-" he pushed back on the bed more, shaking his head.
"It's okay. I can handle it. I know my mutation, what I can and can't do. I can do this." He reached out for Kevin's hand, but the other boy retracted quickly.
"I don't want to hurt you, Elixir." Kevin whispered.
"I'll heal. That's my thing." Josh teased, his voice a whisper to match Kevin's.
"Josh..." Kevin breathed his name, allowing their eyes to connect.
"Here," Josh took Kevin's wrist in his hand, their skin separated by only the thin fabric of Kevin's cheap, black hoodie.
"Josh, please... Don't." Kevin protested, but didn't attempt to pull his hand away.
"I won't let you hurt me." Josh looked deep into Kevin's eyes as he lifted the boy's hand to his face and touched his fingers to his cheek. He could sense Kevin's mutation attempting to eat away at his skin, but felt no pain. There was a strange buzz of electricity where their skin contacted.
"Oh my gosh..." Kevin cautiously flattened his hand to Josh's cheek, his breath wavering. "How?"
"My mutation is more impressive than you may think." Josh teased, reaching out and taking Kevin's other hand.
"Josh... I never thought I'd be able to-" he took a deep breath, his eyes watering a little. Taking his hand from Josh's face he laughed a little.
"What?" Josh chuckled.
"Umm... You might wanna..." Kevin picked up a small mirror from the dresser beside the bed - not even disconnecting their hands for a moment - and passed it to Josh, biting his lip to suppress a smirk. Taking up the mirror, Josh inspected his appearance.
"Dude!" Josh moaned, his free hand flying up to clutch his cheek. "Not cool!" Josh's golden skin had taken a slight grey tint where it had touched Kevin's hand. He smirked at the strange sight. "You are so dead!" He laughed, tackling Kevin back to lie on the bed and punching him playfully in the stomach, before digging his fingers into the other boy's ribs.
"I'm sorry! Stop! Please!" Kevin begged through his laughter.
"Never!" Josh announced proudly. "My poor, flawless, gold skin!"
"N-no! It's almost back to normal already! I swear!" Josh gave up on his assault and both boys fell back onto the bed laughing. "I hate you." Kevin smirked, turning his head to look at the mutant beside him.
"Ditto." Josh sighed with a small smile, as he stared up at the ceiling. He shifted awkwardly until he lay on his side, facing Kevin. He ran his fingers over the few spaces of exposed skin on the other boy's body. There was something inside of him that wanted this for Kevin. He couldn't imagine what it would be like to not be able to touch anyone else.
"Josh?" Kevin sat up on the bed, pulling his knees up to his chest. Josh quickly mimicked his actions.
"Mmhmm?" He hummed mindlessly.
"Why did you do this? I mean, me and you... We've never really got along. Everything with Laurie and... Just... Why would you risk your health to give me the slightest bit of happiness?" Kevin didn't look at Josh as he spoke. He didn't understand what was going on and he concluded that feeling the familiar confusion he always got from seeing Josh wouldn't help the situation.
"I don't know." Josh lied, his voice a weak whisper. He knew exactly why he did it, he just wasn't sure he was ready to admit it yet. To anyone. Even Kevin. Even himself.
"Do you know how long I've wanted this?" Kevin sighed, staring at the wall. "Do you have any idea how long I've longed to touch somebody without hurting them?"
"No." Josh replied simply.
"A long time." Kevin still didn't look back.
"I'm glad I could help." The words were small and sounded strangely insincere as Josh stood from the bed. "I should go..."
"Wait!" Kevin reached out and took Josh's hand, smiling a little as he did. "Don't you see how amazing this is?"
"I... Urr... I guess." A red hue took Josh's now-once-again golden cheeks.
"Don't go." Kevin ordered softly, pulling the other mutant back to him. Josh swallowed hard and blinked once at the close proximity of their bodies.
"I never really hated you, Kevin. You're actually pretty cool." He smiled slightly.
"Elixir, I-" Kevin closed his eyes, pushing their faces together so that their noses and foreheads touched. "Thank you."
"What do you miss most about being able to touch people?" Josh pushed.
"Little things, mainly. It's more knowing all of the things in my future I'll miss out on." Kevin's voice was quiet, barely audible.
"I want to help you." Josh whispered, stroking his fingers through Kevin's hair.
"Josh..." Josh felt his heart skip a beat at the way Kevin spoke his name - as if he was begging him to stay.
"I'm here." He reassured him. "I'll always be here."
"I'm glad it was you." Kevin confessed reluctantly. Josh knew what he meant. He meant that he was happy that Josh was the one who could touch him. No one else. He wanted it to be Josh.
"I'm glad it was me too." As Josh spoke the words, Kevin opened his eyes and connected them with Josh's once again.
"Shut up." Josh cut off Kevin's words with a smirk. There was a moment of silence and anticipation between them before they finally kissed. The kiss was brief, both of them pulling back abruptly to begin with. Josh bit his lip to hide the unbreakable smile threatening to take his mouth.
"Are my lips grey now, Ford?" He smirked a little, still slightly unsure what Kevin's reaction to their kiss would be.
"Not enough." Kevin chuckled, before kissing him again, this time slightly deeper than the last. Josh knew how important this must be for Kevin. He'd most likely spent every day since his powers manifested believing he would never kiss anyone ever again. Josh had high standards to live up to!
"It's always been you." He whispered, his lips briefly touching Kevin's as he spoke. Their eyes locked for a final time, the close proximity distorting the sight slightly. "Always."