The Residue of Design
by Lar

The publicity tours are normally a pain in the ass, but this time around Chris is less likely to be hiding vodka in his water bottle. It's not out of some misguided attempt to claim he doesn't want to have the vodka, because Chris can bullshit about a lot of things but his drinking habits are not one of them. This time around, he's in a good enough mood to skip the drinking simply because he has Nick waiting when it's over.

He'd laugh at himself - hell, he has laughed at himself for thinking those kinds of things. But Nick is a good time and Chris is due some fun. It's not like he's going to go shopping for rings or any crazy shit like that. He's just damn well ready to be with someone who's not hiding behind some insane sense of what the public wants to see.

He loves Dave, he always will, but Dave is big name enough to worry. Image is everything, and Chris does not fit with the image that Dave has decided he needs to have. The only consolation Chris has is knowing that it broke Dave down inside to admit that he wasn't going to be able to be what Chris wanted. It's wrong to feel better because someone else is hurting, he knows this. But since he's spent more time hurting over it than Dave has, being the one to recognize the end coming around and all, he's adjusted to being a selfish bastard.

Nick is not the rebound guy. Rebound guy was three months ago, some pretty, messed up little starfucker who followed Chris around and trapped him in the bathroom at the Bellagio and then refused to leave Chris' side until Chris let him suck him off. It was brief and it was shallow, and it ended with Chris telling the pretty boy that he was leaving town to shoot and wouldn't be back for months. The rebound boy shrugged, smirked and said it'd been fun enough, and that Chris had the prettiest mouth he'd ever seen. Every ending should be so painless.

So Nick is not that at all. Nick is something else entirely. Every damn day, Nick has something to tell him about the set, something about the shoot that will leave Chris laughing over dinner, or in bed, wrapped up in Nick's long arms as they flip through the channels and pause to mock the promos for each other's shows. Nick is good for Chris and Chris is smart enough to recognize it.

Nick is the warm body that curves around Chris in bed every night, tangled limbs that refuse to be pushed aside. Chris has grown used to it now, unable to sleep until Nick settles down around him and wraps him up. His chin fits in the curve of Chris' neck and shoulder, his breath is warm against Chris' ear, and when his body goes slack with sleep, he seems to melt into Chris' body. Most nights they're both worn out from the day's work but there's always enough energy when they get into the bed to carry them through casual groping that will invariably lead to more.

It leads to kisses and they lead to nips on shoulder and neck, the slide of full lips over tight muscle and warm skin. There is an inevitable scramble for the tube in the drawer by the bed, the slickness of fingers pressed in and up and

oh fuck yeah, again, right there

the tumble of thighs as someone's belly hits the bed and someone's knees spread the other's apart. Arched back, flexed bicep as it takes the weight of a body bent over, lips pressed to an ear so the whispers

god, now, jesus fuck yes

aren't lost in the panting breaths that fill the room. So that the groans that come after are as much a feeling as a sound, a burst of moist warm breath against the curve of ear as each word is expelled.

Nick is all of that, and when Chris sits on the stage and listens to the reporters ask Jennifer again how she thinks this show will appeal to working women, he grins to himself. This bullshit might be endless and he might have to grit his teeth when he explains for the hundredth time that he's sure that most men today are just like Jack and sell it when he does it. But when he gets off the stage and out of the car tonight, Nick will be waiting at home. And that's enough.


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