A/N: There's a bit of boyxboy action, nothing explicit but if you ain't comfortable with it, you should skip this chapter. You won't miss anything from the main plot line so yeah.
Fred was curled up on his windowsill, his feet lying on his bed that was pushed up against the wall of his window. His mind was trying to focus on the words and pictures of the manga that he was rereading for the nth time, 'trying' being the operative word. Since the discovery, he couldn't stop mulling over a certain Italian. He was constantly remembering events such as when they were at the mall or when they talked at the skate park with blushing cheeks and a subconscious smile. He was so deep in thought that he didn't notice when his door opened and his visitor stood in shock at the doorway.
His visitor cleared his throat loudly and knocked on the door again but with more strength, effectively startling Fred and gaining his attention.
"Carlos?" Fred blinked in surprise. I've been thinking about him so much he actually appeared?
Carlos swallowed the newly formed lump in his throat and managed to say, "You…wear glasses?"
Fred's eyes instantly widened and he quickly removed the dark brown frames from his face, setting them down on the pile of books at the other end of the windowsill. "Uh, yeah, I'm nearsighted. I only wear them at home."
Fred wasn't too fond of his glasses despite them being more comfortable than contacts. He just hated wearing them in public since it was impossible for him to go a few hours without someone saying how cute and adorable he looked in them.
Carlos rubbed the back of his neck, "Your mom let me in. And, uh, they look nice." If 'nice' means 'adorably sexy', then yeah, 'nice'.
Carlos was trying to get rid of the image he was presented with when he entered Fred's room. The sight of the redhead sitting on his windowsill, looking down thoughtfully at his book with the retro-esque glasses perched on his nose had Carlos speechless, breathless, and everything in between. He almost didn't want to shatter the image but he knew just standing in the doorway and staring at Fred would be horribly awkward, not to mention creepy, if he were caught. Also, any more staring and he would have had a gradually growing issue in his pants.
Fred closed his manga and set it on the windowsill before getting up and clumsily crawling across his bed until he was standing on the floor. "Oh, um, thanks. What're you doing here?"
"Well, I finished 07-Ghost and it wasn't too bad but I didn't feel up to continuing it just yet, and the other day you said I could borrow Black Cat from you and I didn't have anything going on today and I've finished all my homework for tomorrow and Tuesday so…" Carlos trailed off before he started rambling and blurted something that would probably make Fred kick him out through the window.
This wasn't a good idea. He looked way too irresistible with the glasses. He still looks ridiculously tempting. Carlos stuffed his hands into his pockets so his hands at least were restrained.
"Oh, yeah, no problem. I prefer Black Cat as well," Fred said, feeling and odd sense of nervousness and pride. "Just give me a sec to find it, though it might take a bit longer."
Fred sheepishly looked around his room. The average sized room was quite literally filled with books from novels to mangas to comics. He had two bookcases that were dedicated to novels and a few shelves built into the walls for his mangas, but it wasn't enough so he had piles of books on the floor lined up against his mint green walls. He also had a few piled up at the foot of his bed, on the far end of his windowsill, and around the dark green and brown beanbag he used when it was too hot to sit on his windowsill.
Carlos shook his head and smiled, "My room's pretty much the same. The floor is barely visibly with all my books."
Fred chuckled, feeling less embarrassed about the state of his room. He didn't know why he was so self-conscious in the first place. His friends and strangers had seen his room in a much messier state and he never cared, but Carlos seeing it suddenly made it matter.
A knock sounded on his door and Fred's mother peeked into the room.
"Ah, Fred, just wanted to let you know that I'm going over to Natalie's," she said. Mrs. Fox turned to Carlos and gave him a smile, "It was nice meeting you, Carlos. It's always nice to see Fred making new friends. I'm surprised he has such loud and outgoing friends like Jimmy and Ty yet he's so quiet and doesn't socialize."
"Mom!" Fred groaned, face heating up in embarrassment.
Mrs. Fox rolled her eyes, "Don't 'Mom!' me, Fred. I won't be back until tonight so order something in. I left some money in the kitchen under your Bridge to Terabithia."
"Oh, I was looking for that. And alright, see you tonight then, mom."
Mrs. Fox nodded and after another polite smile to Carlos, which he returned, she left and was soon heard closing the door.
"You get your hair from your mom?" Carlos asked. The first thing he noticed when the front door had opened and he met Lorelei Fox was her shock of red-orange hair and bright blue eyes. She was small, slender, and pale, like a porcelain doll with an abundance of freckles.
Fred nodded and played with a strand of his curly red locks, "Yeah, but I got my dad's eyes. Boring brown."
"Your eyes aren't boring, they're like creamy chocolate, beautiful," Carlos responded immediately and cringed when he realized what exactly he had said. He didn't want to make Fred uncomfortable by reminding the boy that Carlos had a crush on him.
Fred blushed and turned around, facing one of the manga filled shelves, "Uh, um, thanks. Do you want anything to drink or something? It might take a while to find it."
"No, I'm fine. I'll help you look," Carlos offered though he was already scanning the book piles.
They searched in a comfortable silence and Carlos couldn't help but steal a few glances at Fred, watching him frown in concentration as he looked for the volume. He was wearing a simple, oversized, dark grey t-shirt and a pair of long, black shorts. It was late afternoon but he looked like he had only woken up a few hours ago.
"Dammit, where the hell is it?" Fred grumbled as he stood in the center of his room and did a 360 spin. He stopped when he faced one of his bookcases. On top was a pile of books and he squinted, unable to read the spine without glasses or contacts.
"Hey, what're the ones on top of the bookcase?" he asked Carlos. He didn't want to put his glasses back on with Carlos in the room. The only people he could wear his glasses around were his parents, otherwise it was contacts. Even his friends rarely saw him in glasses, the only times being when they came to his house unannounced.
Carlos walked towards the bookcase and peeked at the books piled on top. He grinned, "It's them."
"Great," Fred smiled back and went to his desk to roll his chair to the front of the bookcase.
"Hey! That's dangerous," Carlos exclaimed when Fred climbed up onto the chair that shifted forebodingly under Fred's weight.
Fred waved Carlos' worries off and reached for the books, "Nah, it's fine. I do this all the ti—waaah!"
The chair rolled out from under his feet and Fred screwed his eyes shut as he felt his body get thrown backwards. His stomach shifted nauseatingly and he waited for the explosion of pain from landing on the wooden floor. To his surprise and relief, instead of hard flooring, he landed on a warm body.
Carlos groaned quietly in pain from the landing. When Fred was falling, he caught the boy but momentum made Carlos fall backwards right onto his ass, but he managed to shield Fred from the fall with his body.
"Shit, are you okay?" Fred asked, craning his neck around to look at Carlos.
Carlos gave him a reassuring smile, "Yeah, I'm fine. I told you it was dangerous."
Fred cringed slightly, "Sorry. I don't usually fall."
Carlos leaned forward and rested his forehead on Fred's shoulder, unconsciously tightening his hold around the redhead's waist and pulling him closer into Carlos' body that acted like a human sized glove. "You scared the hell out of me," he breathed quietly.
Carlos' heart had practically halted in fear when he saw Fred falling. It was like in movies where everything was in slow motion and all he could think about was making sure Fred was safe and unharmed.
"S-sorry," Fred shivered when he felt Carlos' breath caress his back and his soft blond hair tickled his blushing cheeks.
Carlos knew he had to move away from Fred, and fast, but he couldn't. He loved the feeling of the smaller boy pressed up against him and he wanted to be selfish for once.
"Fred," Carlos murmured. "I really do like you. I can't stop thinking about you and even though I've been so careful to keep my sexuality under key, just being in the same room as you makes we want to throw caution to the wind—excuse the cliché."
As he spoke, Carlos pressed gentle, soft kisses along the back of Fred's exposed neck. He wanted to have just this one thing because he knew that he had crossed a line that there was no going back from.
Fred felt his heart pounding and his mind swimming, he didn't know what to think. His body was over sensitized and overheating, his breathing turned shallow, and he couldn't help the warm clench of his stomach.
Not knowing what to do, Fred screwed his eyes shut, but that only intensified the feeling of Carlos' warm lips on his flushed skin. He wasn't too sure how he felt about that but he knew he didn't exactly want to push Carlos away.
Carlos slowly made his way up and around Fred's neck, lightly going along his jaw. He detached his lips from Fred's skin and brought up a hand and gently turned Fred's face around.
Fred opened his eyes, no longer feeling Carlos' light kisses and wondered what he was going to do now. He didn't have long to ponder though because Carlos once again had his lips on him, but this time it was on Fred's lips.
Carlos closed his eyes and firmly pressed his lips to Fred's. Countless times since meeting the redhead, Carlos had wondered what his lips would like against his own. He was not disappointed.
Fred's lips weren't soft as rose petals, but rather lightly chapped and felt a little rough against Carlos'. The texture felt nice as Carlos moved his lips against Fred's, catching Fred's slightly plump bottom lip between his.
Fred froze the moment Carlos pressed their lips together. It felt different. Stronger. Fred had had his fair share of kisses in the past, but none of them were with a boy. A book loving, blond haired, amber eyed, Italian boy who made his heart race and mind swim.
After a moment of Carlos moving his lips with a gentle but firm touch, Fred felt his eyes flutter shut. Before he could kiss back, Carlos moved away and Fred's eyes flew open again from the lack of contact.
Carlos didn't look at Fred and quickly got the two of them to their feet. He kept his gaze on the floor and muttered a quick, "I'm sorry," before quickly walking to the door.
"W-wait!" Fred blurted when he shook out of his dazed state. Carlos ignored him even though he so badly wanted to stop, but he didn't want to hear or see Fred get angry at him so he continued to walk, increasing his pace.
"I said wait, dammit!" Fred growled, grabbing the back of Carlos' shirt and pulling him to a stop right before Carlos put his hand on the doorknob. Fred hated when people ignored him when he was speaking directly to them, but he was even more pissed that Carlos was just walking away. Like fuck I'll let him just waltz out after completely screwing my mind.
"Don't you even fucking think about just walking out after doing that," Fred threatened.
Carlos turned around and saw the anger in Fred's face. He hates me. "I'm sorry, Fred. I couldn't control myself and it was a mistake coming here. I promise I'll stay away from you and I understand if you completely despise me now."
The thought of Carlos avoiding him sent a bolt of sadness and hurt right to Fred's chest and he hurriedly grabbed onto the front of Carlos' shirt and gushed, "W-wait, look, just stay for a bit and we'll talk about…what happed."
Carlos opened his mouth to protest, he didn't want his memory of their kiss, though one-sided, to be followed by hearing Fred asking him to stay away.
"You are getting on that bed and we are talking," Fred cut him off sternly. He didn't let Carlos try again and pulled the blond to his bed, making him sit down on the edge while Fred stood in front of him to block Carlos if he tried to stand up and run. He was sure Carlos could still escape, but Fred held onto the suspicion that Carlos wouldn't do anything that could cause Fred physical harm, even by accident.
Fred crossed his arms over his chest in what he hoped to be a stern and determined manner, but now that he had Carlos sitting down in front of him, he didn't know what to do next. He just didn't want Carlos to leave, especially after he had said that he would completely stay away from Fred.
Fred took a deep breath and decided to start by saying, "I don't despise or hate you, Carlos. I'm…confused."
Carlos looked up quizzically. He was not expecting that. Yelling, disgust, threats, and name-calling he was more or less mentally prepared for, but not an admission of confusion.
Fred dropped his arms and played with the bottom of his shirt, looking down at his hands. "I liked hanging out with you at the mall and talking to you about books, I don't get to do that often seeing as none of my friends are huge fans of reading. I don't hang out with many people outside of the gang and spending some time with you was different and I enjoyed myself. When Ty slipped and I figured out that you…like me, I was flattered and felt…strangely happy. Strange, because I've had some girls say they like me and a few guys – but those guys pissed me off by calling me cute, which I am not, but anyway, it wasn't the same. I don't even know what I'm saying right now, but I don't want you to just ignore me. I like having you around even though we haven't known each other for long."
Fred took another deep breath and closed his eyes, whispering, "And…I think I might be getting a crush on you or something."
Carlos stared at Fred with wide eyes. "A-are you sure?" he stuttered.
Fred rolled his eyes and chuckled nervously, "That's why I said I was confused. I'm not sure about my new feelings. All I know is that I'm constantly thinking about you with a blush on my face, even my parents think something's up with me, and that I was about to kiss you back before you pulled away five minutes ago."
"Now I really need to leave," Carlos muttered, forcing his gaze to his hands in his lap.
Fred frowned, "What? Why?"
Carlos gave him a crooked smile, "Because after that admission, I doubt I'll be able to restrain myself from pinning you to the wall and kissing you senseless."
Fred blushed crimson at the mental image Carlos' words painted in his head. "I don't think I'd mind that," he murmured quietly.
Fred wasn't quiet enough though because the next thing he knew, his back was flat against the wall next to his bed while Carlos was pressed up against his front.
Carlos took Fred's lips prisoner with his own, hungry to taste the redhead of his late night fantasies. Fred, after the initial shock, closed his eyes and responded willingly, using a stray drop of courage to gently nibble on Carlos' bottom lip.
They didn't go far, just mouth on mouth with the occasional nibbling and odd lick here and there. The only differences from their first kiss were that Fred was given time to respond, it was longer, and despite not going to deep, it was hungry and passionate on an emotional level new to them both.
When they finally parted to breath, Carlos rested his forehead against Fred's with his eyes closed in bliss. He couldn't believe that Fred was actually squished between a wall and Carlos' own body. That Fred had responded to Carlos' kiss. That Fred had confessed to being attracted to Carlos. That Fred didn't hate Carlos.
"Does this mean you'll consider being my boyfriend?" Carlos asked breathily, the lust heavy hoarseness of his voice sent a pleasant shiver down Fred's spine.
Fred chuckled and nodded, not able to speak quite yet. Even though they hadn't had a full-blown make-out session (though he found he wasn't too opposed to the idea), he still felt breathless and knew his voice would crack in an embarrassing way.
Carlos opened his eyes and grinned, "I can only imagine what Ty is going to say."
Ice-cold realization crashed upon Fred and his healthy blush disappeared in almost an instant. He had forgotten about the real world, the world that existed outside of the little bubble he and Carlos had been in from the moment they were the only two left in his house. He had been acting in the moment, caught up in the rush that was Carlos Rizzo.
Carlos noticed Fred's sudden paleness and cursed himself for moving so quickly. He, too, had been caught up in the moment, unadulterated joy flowing through him at Fred's confession.
He backed away from the more than pale redhead and gently directed him to the bed, "Calm down, Fred. Breathe."
Fred let Carlos lead him to the bed and sat down on the edge, trying to even his breathing. Carlos sat down beside him but made sure to leave a small gap of a few inches between them. Far enough so Fred didn't feel trapped by Carlos' presence, but close enough so that Carlos could act quickly if something were to happen, like Fred passing out or having a panic attack.
Fred gripped his head, his thoughts running wild. "I…I don't…Shit. I can't tell my parents and this is the first time I really don't want to tell anyone of the gang," he whispered. Realizing how his words could be taken, his head shot up to look at Carlos, just barely catching the expression of hurt that ran across his face. "I don't mean it like that, it's just that I never thought I'd be attracted to a guy! It's not like I don't want people to know that you and I…um…that I… I just need some time…It's kind of a lot to think about when you realize you might possibly be gay after years of not feeling any sort of sexual attraction to anyone," he stumbled, looking back down at his limp hands in his lap as he felt his face light up.
Carlos smiled, immensely pleased that Fred had never felt like this for anyone before. He wanted to monopolize Fred and that incredible streak of possessiveness surprised Carlos, though he didn't mind it all that much. He reached forward and gently ruffled Fred's hair, making him look up. "I understand. We can move as slow as you like and keep everything under wraps. Take all the time you need and I promise not to say anything to anyone. Only when you're ready."
Fred held out his pinky finger to Carlos, lips set into a firm determined line.
"Pinky promises?" Carlos questioned, barely hiding his amusement. He's just so adorable.
"Yes. You have a problem with that?"
"No, no problem at all, volpino," Carlos chuckled and interlocked his pinky with Fred's.
Fred's brow furrowed in confusion, "Volpino? What does-ack! W-what're you…"
Carlos grinned slyly as Fred flushed bright red, right to the tips of his ears, his warm brown eyes wide in startled surprise.
"Nothing, you wanted to pinky promise didn't you?" Carlos answered calmly. He had brought their linked fingers to his lips and was gently nibbling on Fred's pinky.
"Y-yeah, but, but, you…y-you, don't d-do that," Fred stuttered.
"Don't do what?" Carlos asked, feigning innocence. He continued to nibble on the small digit before slipping the finger into his mouth, making Fred gasp and turn scarlet.
"That!" Fred squeaked, pulling his hand away from Carlos and holding it to his chest. "Who are you?"
Carlos tilted his head to the side with a confused smile, "I'm Carlos. What's wrong?"
"B-but, you're usually so calm and collected and you have that polite smile but now you're all playful and…and…"
"And…?" Carlos pushed Fred to continue, his smile not lessening in the slightest.
"A horn dog!" Fred abruptly stated, blushing to the roots of his hair once again.
Carlos stared at the redhead for a second before bursting out in laughter, clutching his stomach.
"Quit laughing at me, it's true! You turned into such a sex crazed horn dog!" Fred exclaimed indignantly.
"Well that's your fault, Fred."
"Nuh-uh, you're not pinning your horn dog behaviour on me. That's all on you," Fred argued, jabbing Carlos' chest with his pointer finger.
Carlos smirked and grabbed Fred's wrist, bring his hand up to his mouth and licking his finger. "I can't control myself around you so it's your fault I'm breaking out of character and loosening up," he murmured against Fred's finger before sucking it into his mouth.
Fred's breathing hitched and he swore his heart stopped as he watched Carlos suck on his finger while keeping their gazes locked. He couldn't look away from Carlos' heated amber eyes, the twin orbs burning with desire and affection.
He didn't notice when or how, but Fred soon found himself in Carlos' lap, straddling the blonde as they sucked the air out of each other, tongues battling for dominance. Fred's hands were threaded deep in Carlos' hair, pulling him impossibly close while Carlos' hands were roving Fred's back, feeling and memorizing every dip and curve of his body through the thin shirt.
When Carlos' hands slipped under Fred's shirt, pulling a moan from Fred's kiss-bruised lips, Fred immediately backed away, eyes wide open. He jumped back so suddenly that he stumbled right off the bed, landing with a loud thud on the floor.
"Oww," Fred groaned, rolling to his side and curling up into a ball as he held his now throbbing head.
"Fred, are you okay?" Carlos rushed to Fred's side, desire and want replaced by worry and concern.
"Yeah, just my head. Shit this floor is hard."
"Here, let's get you back on the bed and let me take a look," Carlos gently helped Fred to his feet and sat him down on the edge of the bed.
Carlos stood between Fred's legs and carefully ran his hands through Fred's red curls, searching for any signs of swelling.
"Ouch!" Fred yelped when Carlos' fingers skimmed the back of his head.
"Good news is that there's no bruising but take it easy and if you start feeling dizzy spells tell someone immediately."
Fred rolled his eyes, "Yes, mother. But I doubt I'll get a concussion from falling off a bed."
"Speaking of falling off beds…" Carlos suddenly pushed Fred backwards so he was lying flat on his back before crawling over Fred's body and caging him with his arms on either side of his head. "Why did you jump away?"
Fred turned his head away as his cheeks and neck heated up, mumbling, "No reason."
"You're lying, volpino," Carlos murmured, running his nose up Fred's chest and along his reddened neck, up to his ear.
"Now I know how Ty feels when you guys use Italian on her and don't say what it means," Fred muttered, trying and failing to ignore the way his body was reacting to Carlos' touch.
Carlos breathed on Fred's ear before taking the lobe between his teeth, grinning at the obvious hitch in Fred's breathing. "So, why did you run away?" he whispered.
Fred mumbled incoherently, trying to wriggle away, but Carlos was having none of that. He pressed his lower half down onto Fred to keep him still. Fred immediately stopped squirming, slightly afraid and incredibly conscious of how close they now were. He could feel Carlos' body heat seeping into the lower half of his body and he desperately hoped that his body wouldn't start acting up.
"You're gonna have to speak more clearly, volpino. You tell me clearly, and I'll tell you what volpino means. That's a fair trade."
Fred grumbled and looked up at Carlos through his lashes before looking away again. "It's embarrassing," he mumbled.
"What's embarrassing? I still want a clear answer," Carlos asked. If Fred wanted to draw this out for as long as possible, Carlos was going to take advantage of every second. He began to slowly lay languid kisses along Fred's exposed jawline, moving to suckle on Fred's neck and make his mark.
"This!" Fred finally exclaimed, managing to bring his arms up to cover his heated face and detach Carlos' lips from his neck. "You keep doing things like this and I don't know how to control how my body reacts and it's just embarrassing because it's only with you! I mean, I fucking moaned just because you slid your hands up my shirt and shoved your tongue down my throat!"
The room was silent after his abrupt outburst but Fred still kept his face hidden behind his arms. He only realized exactly what he had just said after blurting it out and his face was burning brighter than the center of the hottest sun.
Carlos was still caging Fred with his body and gently pressed his lips against Fred's crossed arms. "Hey, Fred, let me see your face."
"No," Fred mumbled his weak protest, turning to his side and still keeping his arms over his face.
"Fred, please?" Carlos pleaded quietly.
Fred blamed it on the tone of his voice and slowly lowered his arms. "Don't laugh at me."
"I wouldn't laugh at you after that. If you'd look at me you'd see that I'm ecstatic."
Sure enough, Fred turned slightly to peek at Carlos and saw that he was indeed grinning happily. He was speechless, especially when Carlos fell down on him and engulfed him in a tight hug.
"As long as I'm the only one who affects you like that, I'll be the happiest man alive," Carlos said, burying his face into Fred's hair.
Fred slowly relaxed in Carlos' embrace, closing his eyes and relishing in the feel of Carlos' warm body wrapped around his. It was different than being embraced by one of his friends, but it was a good different. He just couldn't pick out the specific emotions he was feelings.
"Hey, you said you'd tell me what volpino means," Fred remembered. He shifted around until he was facing Carlos, only belatedly realizing that their faces were now extremely close together, their breaths fanning the other's face.
"It means 'little fox'," Carlos answered, eyes zeroed in on Fred's lips that pulled into a small frown.
"I'm not little," he said, slightly put off.
"But you are, to me at least," Carlos pointed out. "Or would you rather I call you mio carino piccolo amore?"
"What does that mean? Jeez, I'm sympathizing with Ty more and more now."
"It means 'my cute little love'."
Fred once again blushed right down to the tips of his toes and ducked his face into Carlos' chest, as it was the only place he could hide in. "I prefer the fox one," he mumbled against Carlos' shirt. Normally, he would have gone ape shit and made Carlos think twice about calling him cute, but Fred was too embarrassed and he didn't know what to make of the warm tingly feeling he got in his stomach at the words.
Fred felt Carlos' chest vibrate in laughter and he was pressed closer to Carlos' warmth as Carlos tightened his hold around him, resting his chin on the crown of Fred's head.
"I'm almost terrified that this is just a dream and I'm going to wake up any second now alone on my bed," Carlos murmured. He rubbed mindless circles at Fred's hips, making the smaller boy slightly drowsy.
"Well that'd be weird cuz then I'd be havin' the exact same dream. I don't think you can share dreams," Fred responded sleepily.
"Yeah, you're right," Carlos agreed. "Although, sharing dreams would be interesting."
They stayed silent for a while, Carlos still rubbing circles into Fred's side until he asked, "Hey, Fred, how long do you want to keep this a secret? I respect your decision but I also want to let everyone know that you are mine and mine alone."
Fred didn't answer and Carlos frowned, shifting them slightly, "Fred?"
His frown turned into a soft smile as he saw that Fred had fallen asleep, his soft lips lightly parted as if he were about to speak.
Carlos gently traced Fred's lips and brushed his hair away from his face, carefully getting up and picking Fred up to place him on the bed properly with his head on the pillow before crawling up next to him and pulling Fred back into his arms. He reached over and closed the blinds so the light wouldn't disturb Fred.
Carlos wasn't planning on staying long, knowing that Fred's mother or father could walk in on them if he chose to take a nap too. Still, he wanted a few more moments to cherish in his euphoric state and decided to just watch the redhead sleep for a few minutes before writing a quick note and leaving. Never would he have thought that one spontaneous decision to borrow a book would have led to his crush agreeing to become his boyfriend, among other things.
That decided, he pulled the boy closer than possible and kissed the top of Fred's head when the sleeping teenager unconsciously snuggled into his chest, "Sweet dreams, volpino."
Volpino - little fox
Mio carino piccolo amore - my cute little love