Riff hid a yawn behind his hand, rubbing the back of his hand against his eyes in an effort to wake up more. Though he had been asleep most of the weekend, jet lag still hung heavily on his shoulders, and he felt as if he was moving through a hazy fog. One would think having three cups of tea in the morning would have been enough to make his steps less sluggish, but maybe Riff had been optimistic. As much as he would have loved to stay in bed all day, there were things he needed to do. Such as see Cain again (had it really only been a few months? It had felt far longer), work out if his credits were to transfer, and try to settle back into his classes, which would be in English and not French. It had taken him a while to understand what his mother was saying to him, he had gotten so used to French, which could have contributed to why she was so grumpy in picking him up.
Stretching, he made his way downstairs, shuffling in only his comfy pajama bottoms. School didn’t start for him again until tomorrow, and his mum had said if he was still feeling tired he could stay home, though he could only imagine what sort of chaos that would bring from his best friend. If he wanted the school to still be standing, he’d go to school, even if he wouldn’t be surprised if Cain showed up sooner or later. Running a hand tiredly through his hair and moving lethargically around the kitchen, fixing to make another cup of tea to wake him up (he didn’t care much for coffee) and a bowl of cereal. And now that he thought about it, he probably should call Siobhan and her family to thank them for letting him stay with them and to inform them he had safely arrived home…
Settling down at the kitchen table with a bowl of his little brother’s favorite overly sugared cereal, Riff started mentally composing what he was going to say to Cain when he inevitably arrived or what he was going to say to Siobhan when he called.
(XD No worries, long posts are my lifeblood. I’m a bit longwinded.)
The walk to Riff's house seemed at least three times as long as it usually did, even though he ran a good two-thirds of the way. Last he'd checked, it should only have taken him five minutes--why now, of all days, did the space-time-continuum decide to loop his existence into an endless trek towards his heart's only desire? It must have been at LEAST twenty minutes that he'd been hurrying towards his goal, getting nowhere. Frustrated, he glanced at his watch--he'd left the house at 4:06--
The little digital clock read 4:07.
Feeling inherently frustrated at the world in general, he quickened his pace and began reciting the alphabet in Spanish, hoping to distract his mind from going RIFFRIFFRIFFRIFFRIFF and trick it into thinking the trip took less time. It seemed to work, and he went on that way for quite some time.
Then, about a block and a half from his friend's house, he got into a fierce debate with himself over whether or not to stop into the little cafe Riff loved so much and bring him a drink, preferably laden with caffeine. One half of his brain was extremely stubborn on the point that Cain should start paying off all the kindnesses his friend had done him over the years, and that he probably hadn't had a chance to visit the cafe yet and would be thrilled that Cain had brought something for him. The other half snuck in with the point that Riff would be thrilled just to see Cain at all, and the sooner he could make an excuse to snuggle up to that firm, muscled chest the better--which was quickly cut off by the first half, which pointed out that Riff was probably jet-lagged and exhausted, and would need the caffeine boost to help him deal with Cain's surplus of gleeful energy. The second half couldn't think up a plausible response other than 'SEXYMUSCLESWARMRIFF', which the first half promptly laughed at and dismissed anyway, and so Cain ended up fidgeting in a much-too-long line of THREE WHOLE PEOPLE waiting for the barista to take his order.
Eight minutes, twelve seconds, and a near-harassment charge later, Cain was running as fast as his boots would take him the remaining block and a half to Riff's house, a chai latte in one hand and an iced black tea in the other. He slowed down a little when his bag jarred alarmingly against his leg; it wouldn't do to give his Riff a smashed bottle of cologne, after all. Fortunately, he became so preoccupied with keeping the bag safe that when he looked up again, it wasn't what seemed like miles of suburban sidewalk that kept him apart from the young man who unknowingly held his heart, but a mere slate walkway, a wooden porch, and a familiar, slightly chipped wooden door.
Unable to contain his euphoria any longer, Cain vaulted himself /up/ and over the stairs--a feat previously unheard-of in humans--and began ringing the doorbell repeatedly.
(ooc--) I'm kinda glad. ^^; Evidence of my own equally-longwindedness below... >>; Just so I know whether to give Cain a massive nosebleed/heart attack when Riff answers the door...is Riff in the pajama bottoms and nothing else, or does he have a shirt on? x3)
(XD Don’t worry. If you let me I can write pages and pages. So really, no worries. I’m glad that you’re inspired enough to write so much. And I’ll be nice to Cain. Riff will wear a shirt so he doesn’t bleed to death on his front porch. XD)
Riff was on his fourth cup of tea and his second bowl of cereal, and was starting to feel slightly more human when the doorbell started to ring. Repeatedly. Sighing, but shaking his head affectionately, Riff got up from his seat, going to open the door before their electricity bill skyrocketed because of his overenthusiastic friend. He was halfway there when he realized he was hardly presentable. While he wasn’t necessarily ashamed of his body (he did change in a locker room full of his fellow peers on an almost daily basis), it was rather sloppy of him to answer the door half dressed. It was pushing the boundaries of décor that his mother wanted him to follow just by considering answering the door, even if it was just Cain, in pajama bottoms. Quickly, he pulled a shirt from the pile of folded laundry his mum had been steadily working through ever since he had gotten back, slipping the plain, long sleeved, button up collared shirt on before padding barefoot over to the door.
Undoing the numerous locks that his father had installed (being a bit paranoid, but rather justified since their neighborhood wasn’t exactly a gated community), he opened the door, quirking an eyebrow at Cain, a grin on his face. It had been too long, he decided, and while he had enjoyed being in France, it had not been the same without his spirited best friend. He looked flushed, as if he had run the entire way here, and managed to balance two drinks (caffeine? For Cain? Oh dear…) while he repeatedly mashed the button.
“Hey stranger. What has that doorbell ever done to you? And who in their right mind gave you coffee?” Riff teased, touched beyond words that Cain had decided to drop by as soon as he had heard he was back in town. “Though, I have missed you enough to put up with your hyperactive presence.” He stepped away from the door, gesturing for Cain to come in. “Come in. Are you hungry? Please tell me you put more things in your stomach than coffee, or I shall have to be very cross and make you some decent breakfast.”
((ooc--edited. The original post was kinda cramped because I was pressed for time, but I got ideas on how to lengthen it so I'm gonna. Note--beware the cheese-monster.))
Cain managed valiantly to squish down his first impulse, which was to tackle Riff to the ground and cuddle him like their was no tomorrow; instead, he calmly ventured inside to the kitchen and set the cups down on the table next to a half-eaten bowl of cereal and a mug of tea. He placed his bag very carefully on the back of a chair, turned, and drank in the appearance of his Riff, his only love, his best friend in the world. Ahh, it had been far too long.
When he was done, he implemented a rather impressive flying leap and latched himself to Riff, arms about his neck and legs squeezing his waist, while shrieking rather hysterically in utter, mind-numbing, earth-shattering ecstasy. He was yelling something, probably along the lines of 'I missed you I love you never leave me again I LOVE YOU!', but he couldn't quite tell; his voice was muffled in the wonderfully warm crook of Riff's neck. He squeezed tighter.
It took a minute for Cain to regain enough coherency to speak in full sentences. "It's not coffee. It's tea from the indie-hipster cafe you love so much," he mumbled, inhaling deeply, his nose tingling as it absorbed the familiar, slightly musky scent of Riff and laundry detergent and soap. Hmm, leave it to him to keep himself clean and tidy, even while jetlagged. "I figured you'd need the caffeine to keep up with me." He pulled back a little without loosening his grip in the slightest, just enough to get a better, closer look at Riff's handsome, finely-drawn features.
His friend looked tired, but healthy. His face was a little on the pale side, and there was darkness under his eyes that looked suspiciously like circles. There was a bit of a shadow along his jawline, and a brief exploration with his fingertips proved to Cain that it was exactly what it looked like--Riff hadn't shaved yet; Dear God, it was a sign of the apocalypse. But even so, his blue eyes were warm and filled with an emotion Cain couldn't quite put his finger on but looked a lot like affection, and his smile was genuine. Cain squirmed a little and buried his face in Riff's neck again, feeling for the first time in months that he was truly home.
"By the way," he murmured, unable to resist the impulse to lightly smoosh his mouth against Riff's pulse point in an almost-kiss, "It's after four in the evening. Hardly time for breakfast."
(ooc-beware teh cheese-monster.)
Riff was impressed that Cain had not tackled him right on his own doorstep, considering that Cain was often wont to do whatever his emotions dictated for him, and he had said he was going to tackle him. Cain was perhaps the reason that Riff had been able to join the football team in the first place. He was so used to being tackled by someone full of enough energy to fill up a three hundred pound person, that none of the linebackers on most offending teams had anything on his best friend.
He was about to settle himself back down into his chair to finish the rest of his ‘breakfast’ when Cain tackled him, and startled, Riff almost bumped into the wall behind him, managing to regain his balance at the last moment. To help support his friend, he tucked his hands under Cain’s legs, trying hard not to laugh, though he didn’t succeed. It was so good to see Cain again, that he found himself hugging him back. While he couldn’t quite understand all the words Cain was yelling into his neck (they were all jumbled and muffled into his neck, even though the volume was impressive), though he understood the sentiment. “I missed you too. It is good to see you again.” He murmured softly, smiling affectionately while his best friend tried to speak more understandably.
“Tea?” Riff said, touched and content. The ‘indie-hipster’ café was one of Riff’s favorite haunts. They often had local artists come and sing every Tuesday, all the baristas knew him by name, and it generally had a soothing, sophisticated atmosphere. Of course he usually couldn’t go with Cain since any caffeine in his system was just asking for trouble, and that he actually thought to buy him tea from there… “Thank you for being so thoughtful. And you’re right, I will probably need it. You seem to be speaking a thousand words a minute. How have you been though? What have you been up to? No trouble I hope.”
He fidgeted a bit under his friend’s close scrutiny, avoiding his eyes while Cain seemed to take in everything, down to the stubble on his chin. “Contrary to what you might think, it does take work to look as gorgeous as I do, day to day.” Riff said jokingly, quirking an eyebrow when Cain burrowed back towards him, looking as if he would like nothing more to stay this way forever. He closed his eyes, trying not to shudder a bit at the feeling of Cain’s breath and lips against his neck, which always seemed to be rather sensitive.
“Nonsense. Any time is a good time for cereal. And by the way,” Riff said dryly, though his tone was still teasing, “I can’t hold you up forever. And have you gotten bonier? Tell me that someone at least has been making sure to feed you.”
Cain squeezed a little tighter, but reluctantly let his feet drop to the floor; Riff was tired and not at full strength, and Cain wasn't horribly keen on the idea of being dropped, injuring Riff, or both. Once he was standing on his own, however, he went right back to burying his face in Riff's collarbone (he couldn't quite reach his neck without being lifted; Riff was very large and Cain was very small) and attempting to hug him to death.
He couldn't help but smile; they were a perfect fit, with Cain tucked just so under Riff's chin, Riff's warm, strong arms at the perfect height to wrap securely about his waist...he felt a little like a southern belle, clinging to her big, strong, manly love interest. All that was missing was a huge dress, a sunset, and a horse with which to ride off into it. He snickered a little at the thought; peach really wasn't his color.
"I'm glad you like the tea," he said, and had a good laugh at the half of his brain that had argued so much against getting it. /See? He's happy!/ He pulled back a little and offered a dazzling smile. "I also got a chai latte for me. It's decaf, so don't worry." He pulled back, keeping his arms loosely wrapped around Riff's neck. He fixed his friend with a gaze, and held it confidently as he spoke again.
"Riff, love, if you rolled in pig excrement, didn't bathe for a week, got tarred and feathered, swam in a pool of engine oil, and had a misunderstanding with a bulldozer, you'd still look gorgeous." He finally let go and made his way to the table, pulling out the chair upon which his bag was carefully resting. He moved it to the table and sat, unzipping it and carefully lifting out the sweatshirt.
"I will never understand your irrational attachment to sugar-crap cereal, which is more dessert than actual food...YOU tell ME that you've been eating other things besides...whatever that is. Sugary frosted sugar frosts, or whatever." He flapped his hand uselessly for a moment, carefully evading the question of his own nutrition.
The fact of the matter was that if Riff didn't feed him, Cain tended to forget to eat; Jezebel was practically starving himself anyway, and his father couldn't care less. Merry started prodding him into taking her out to lunch every day when she noticed that his wrists were getting thinner than hers, but that had been a fairly recent development. Cain rationalized that his body had been put through worse--rat poison really wasn't too good for the system--he could ease himself back into eating like a normal person now that Riff was home; no need to make him worry.
"Here's your sweatshirt. That box is for you as well. Be careful with it; it's breakable," he continued. /Nice evasive maneuvering, Cain./
((Oh God...monster post. @~~@))
“I appreciate anything you give to me, Cain.” Riff said once Cain had loosened his grip on him, picking up the tea in question, taking a long, grateful drag of it. Oh, was it his favorite? Iced black tea? He gave a soft, appreciative little sigh, smiling at Cain. “Delicious, thank you. I feel more than half alive now. And if you did get a decaf, all the better. I don’t know how many more tackles I could have taken. Are you sure you don’t want to join the football team?” Riff joked, in between generous sips of his tea. Tea more than cigarettes were his one vice, and once when he had tried to stop drinking copious amounts of it, he had even gotten slight withdrawal symptoms.
He laughed slightly at Cain’s exaggeration, pleased nonetheless that his friend had such faith in his ‘ability to be gorgeous’. “You have far too much faith in me. It is flattering nonetheless. You must tell this to all your best friends.” He mused, humming happily as he drained the last of the tea down. Bliss. He closed his eyes contentedly, reveling in the way he could almost feel the tea flow through his veins, waking him up. Glorious.
“I like dessert. I have been apart from it for too long. If you must understand, my relationship to this cereal would be like yours to getting piercings” Riff said, eating a spoonful of the cereal to prove his point. “Though this has some nutrition to it, I believe, though my host family couldn’t be talked into getting some.”
He got up, pouring a bowl for Cain, sliding it across the table to his friend. The avoidance of the subject meant that indeed, he had been not taking good care of himself. He knew he should have checked up on his best friend more often, and he felt slightly guilty for not ringing every day like he had told himself he was going to do, but he had gotten so distracted… “Have some. In exchange for the tea. Did you eat breakfast or lunch before you ran over here?” He asked in concern. While he knew that Cain probably would get annoyed at his mothering, he couldn’t really help himself. No one looked after Cain, even though he was such a remarkable and giving individual. Cain had helped him when no one else had, and Riff knew he would never be able to repay his best friend’s kindness in this life.
He took the sweatshirt and the box carefully, draping the sweatshirt over the back of his chair and looking at the box curiously. “First tea and now this? You must have really missed me. You really didn’t need to… But if we’re going to exchange presents, I might as well give you the souvenirs I got you.” Holding the box carefully, he went into his room and grabbed two wrapped parcels before going back into the kitchen, handing them both to Cain. “The pink one is for you. The other is for Merry.” He said teasingly, wondering if Cain even needed anymore piercings or thick books on serial killers, and really, he had only meant to bring back one souvenir per person, but best friends were an exception he supposed.
((Okay, totally just realized that they don't have football in England. Well, they do, but it's what we call soccer. >>; Oh, well.))
The image of himself on the football team sent Cain into a small fit of giggles, but beyond that, he chose to ignore the comment in lieu of taking a swig from his own cup. Ahh, chai.
"Of course I say it to all of my best friends. All of my best friends being you," he responded saucily, hopping up onto the table and taking the proffered bowl of cereal. He poked at it lightly; he'd never been terribly fond of sweets, but now that he had food in front of him, he really was hungry. His stomach happily demonstrated its agreement by making a noise not unlike a lawn mower. Blushing, Cain appeased it with a large bite of cereal, grimacing as it went down.
"I'm glad your host family couldn't be persuaded to get this for you. Maybe we can delay your inevitable onset of diabetes a little." He stared pointedly at Riff, his eyes narrowing as the other began his mother hen-ing. "Really, Riff, you needn't worry about me. It's not your job to make sure I'm eating regularly," he responded firmly, even as he continued to munch on the disgustingly sweet cereal.
Cain privately thought that he wasn't worth all the fuss Riff made over him. From his slightly sleepy emails, it sounded as though his best friend had integrated himself perfectly into French culture, and probably would have been happy to stay there. Cain couldn't help but think that if he'd never entered Riff's life, the other would have been better off.
He shook himself from those thoughts as Riff handed him two parcels, one of them wrapped in garish pink paper. He raised an eyebrow at his friend.
"Riff, you didn't have to get me anything," he said quietly. He knew the older boy wasn't blessed with a surplus of money, and to spend it on him...a small pang of guilt shuddered through him.
2008-07-03 06:23 am (UTC)
XD Oh snaps. Obviously I do not live in England.
((XD Oh man, fail on my part. Sorry! I think they call it American Football there too, but do you know if it’s widespread or whatnot? If not, rugby could be good.))
“I should hope that you haven’t replaced me in six months. I would have been rather displeased.” Riff said, mockingly stern, though quirked an eyebrow when Cain’s stomach rumbled audibly. Typical. He knew he should have convinced Oscar or Crehador to take care of him while he was away, though Oscar would probably have been too busy chasing after Merry and Crehador would have been more interested in a different type of Cain’s health to be trusted.
He pouted a bit, eating another spoonful, pointing his spoon at his friend. “The likeliness of me getting diabetes is about the same as Oscar marrying your sister, so I am not too worried. And a few months of strictly healthy eating should have been good for something…” He shot his friend a look though at the sentiment that it wasn’t his job to make sure Cain ate right, and while he knew it wasn’t, someone had to worry about him. “It should be someone’s job, and no one else would be able to fill my shoes. I have the most experience.” Riff said, tipping his head to the side to look at him. “If you were to cut my pay though, I’d have to resign.” Riff teased, half serious, half joking. If Cain really didn’t like him pestering about eating, Riff would stop. Somewhat.
He waved off his friend’s words, knowing exactly why Cain felt the need to say it. Riff knew that he was far inferior to his best friend in terms of finance, but it didn’t mean that he couldn’t buy his friend presents, especially when he hadn’t seen him in six months. “I promised Merry I would get her souvenirs, and I didn’t want you to die of jealousy.” He said lightly. “And these things reminded me too much of you not to be yours. It would have been a crime for you not to have them. And you got me something too, so we’re even.”
((For convenience's sake, let's just call it American football from now on. xD I'm not English either, so you don't have to worry about offending anyone. Oh, and sorry it took me so long to respond; I've been a tad bit on the wildly uninspired side lately. T_T))
"I'm more concerned about you replacing me," Cain grumbled under his breath, poking viciously at his cereal. Riff had barely stopped talking about some girl--the daughter of his host family, if Cain was remembering correctly--in the few half-awake emails that had been exchanged between the two this morning. What was her name? Chayenne? Yvonne? Whatever it was, it had sounded like a stripper name.
He looked upwards and pasted a smile onto his features, leaning in close and poking Riff's stomach through his shirt. "What exactly were they feeding you? I do hope nobody made you eat snails. Whatever it was, I daresay you've gotten a bit pudgy over there," he teased, using the joke to surreptitiously fondle Riff's stomach. The pudginess was an outright lie; if anything, his friend seemed to be in even better shape than when Cain had last seen him. /Why, God, must you tease me so?/
He pulled away before he embarrassed himself, avoiding Riff's eyes and focusing on polishing off the remains of the sugar-crap cereal in his bowl.
"Maybe I should pay you. It's not like you haven't earned it, with all you do for me; it would take care of the souvenir issue as well," he said carefully, trying to keep the tone light. They'd had falling-outs over money more than once; even though they'd never gone without speaking for more than a week, those days of cold silence had hurt more than the six months they had just spent apart--at least he could call and hear his friend's warm, burgundy voice over his mobile.
(XD It’s fine. I’ve been ridiculously busy. Finding a new apartment, starting summer classes, and trying to find a better paying job. Wah, I want more free time. T.T)
Riff frowned, hearing Cain’s mumbled sentence, not quite sure how he should address the sentiment. Of course he could never replace Cain, he was his best friend. Had six months really been that long? How could Cain ever doubt his affection and friendship? Cain had done more for him than perhaps any other human being, and Riff would always be grateful for him, for reaching out to him and being a friend to him when no one else wanted to go near him. Who could replace that? However, before he could address the matter to see if Cain was being silly or serious, Cain was poking him, smiling. While a bit strained, maybe Riff was only hoping Cain had missed him as much as he had his friend, and thus seeing the signs he wanted to.
“Snails were not so bad. You might like them. I should take you out to eat them sometime. Might slow you down long enough for me to keep up with you.” Riff joked, trying to swat Cain’s hand away from his stomach, unable to help grinning. “And I have not! I made sure to take proper care of myself!” He said, making a mock face at Cain. “And even if I have, it is not so life altering as a tongue piercing. It has not gotten infected or anything, right?” He asked, concerned. The horror stories he had heard about piercings made him worry constantly that one day he would see his friend leaking pus or something as dreadful.
And Riff sighed, shaking his head. “You don’t need to pay me. It is what best friends do, to look after each other and bring each other tea is it not? Don’t worry about it.” Riff said, keeping his voice carefully neutral, while indicating the subject was closed. He was well aware how rich Cain was, and that the money he had could easily help him in anything he planned to do. However, he was not the sort of friend to accept money from another. He would rather earn it.
( I'm suddenly feeling very young. v__v Good luck in your ventures! ^^; )
Cain wrinkled his nose. "If you ever make me eat snails, I will officially disown you and make Oscar my best friend," he threatened, clutching at his stomach. The concept really was making him vaguely ill. "Oh, and ha ha. You've won worst pun of the century. Shall I make you a trophy?" He smirked, hopped down from the table, and shifted close to his friend, swinging one leg over his hip and effectively straddling the older boy. He put his tongue out to display the piercing.
"Examine," he tried to say, though it sounded a little more like "Eggs that eat" around the body part containing the piercing in question. He had to admit that he was ever-so-slightly disappointed that the money issue had been dismissed so quickly; he knew Riff preferred to earn his keep by his own means and rarely accepted charity, but it didn't stop him from feeling bad, dammit. He reminded himself to buy Riff tea more often.
(XD Now I feel old. Ugh. Great. And nah, don’t worry about length. I’m just wordy. I believe I had said this often. Sorry. Shortness isn’t in my vocabulary apparently. O.o)
“It wouldn’t hurt to try something new. They might become your new favorite food.” Riff insisted, bemused at his friend’s expression. “Though I would hate to lost a best friend over snails, much less lose a best friend to Oscar. I don’t know what I would do with myself after that. I’d probably be so dismayed that I would find even Jezebel’s company rewarding.”
While he was used to Cain’s rather physical way of showing affection, nonetheless he was shocked when his best friend all but straddled him. He had Cain to blame, he knew, for finding nothing wrong with such displays between two boys, but he couldn’t help but wonder what, as he was wont to do, was going on in his best friend’s mind to make him feel remotely comfortable settled on his lap. At least his mum didn’t throw a fit over it anymore. One would think she thought the both of them were queer as folk…
“You proved your point, your tongue looks perfectly healthy.” He paused, considering. “If I ever got a piercing, in exchange would you try snails?” Hypothetically speaking, of course, since the last thing Riff wanted to do was set off metal detectors in his spare time.
((Sorry! ^^; Now I feel bad AND young. T_T It's cool. I <3 your long posts. :D They give me more material to work off when I'm in a lazy mood.))
Cain gently tucked Riff's hair behind one ear, brushing his fingertips over it, memorizing the shape with his hands. Nothing extravagant would suit him--Riff wasn't wild enough to look good with a ring through his eyebrow or lip, but Cain could absolutely see him with a small stone in one ear. Maybe topaz, to offset and draw out the striking blue of his eyes. Such an image made the pit of Cain's stomach squirm a little in happiness, and caused a small problem, though he was good at suppressing such things and managed to keep it mental only.
It could be said that that particular problem was what caused Cain's next action, or maybe it was the charming way Riff's cheeks took on a bit of a flush when Cain placed himself in his current, slightly compromising position, but, as he would tell himself later, it was probably just the fact that he was close, and his tongue was out already, why not use it? So he leaned forward, almost without thinking, and playfully, like a puppy, licked his friend's (surprisingly soft) lips.
"Mmm. You can take me out to eat snails after we go to the piercing parlor. I know you too well; if I fulfilled my half of the bargain first, you'd try to slither out of yours later. Of course, if you prefer, I could just pierce you myself. I'm thinking this earlobe," he replied, tapping the ear in question. "Though I almost think a tattoo would suit you better than a piercing." He sat back, content to stay exactly where he was for the time being. What was a little sexually inappropriate behavior between friends, as long as Mrs. Raffit didn't walk in? Cain involuntarily cringed at the memory of that particular incident.
(Oyye. Sorry it's so short. v__v I can try to make it longer if you want...))
(Starting a new line because the comments were all squished.)
"I don't know what sort of piercings you are imagining," Riff drawled with slight amusement as Cain caressed his ear loving, "but I am not getting any. The tattoo is only being considered at this point. I wouldn't push for anything more." His friend had a sort of far away look on his face as if he was imagining what multiple piercings at the top of his hear would feel like, and as much as he thought that such ornaments were fine on Cain, it was another matter for him. Besides, such things would be uncomfortable in his helmet and he had more important things to spend his money on then to fulfill a fancy of his best friend.
He made a face and a surprised noise when Cain decided to lean forward and lick him (right on the lips!), jerking away from him in case Cain decided to continue. As affectionate as Cain was, there were certain boundaries that even Riff was not willing to cross for him, even if he left the taste of sugar on his lips. Wiping at his lips with the back of his hand, he frowned at his best friend. "Do you want my mother to kill us both?" He asked, shaking his head, tapping at the outside of his friend's left thigh to signal for him to get off of him. His mother liked Cain well enough, but she often warned him that he was nothing but trouble and would be the reason she never had any grandkids.
"Seeing you eat snails would almost be worth getting pierced. Almost. What would you do in exchange for me getting a tattoo?" Riff teased.
(Yeah, they were, weren't they? xD)
In a fit of defiance, Cain scooted closer, a devious grin pulling up the corner of his lips. "Just one. A little one. Topaz, or maybe opal, to draw out your eyes. Though you're right; that tattoo would be better," he said nonchalantly, trying to hide the slight trembling of his fingers as he undid the top three buttons of Riff's shirt.
"Right...here," he murmured, tracing his fingers against Riff's pale skin. His heart clenched, a wad of messy, aching emotion lodging itself in his throat at the action, at the way his fingertips tingled from the contact. He leaned closer, partially to whisper in Riff's ear, but mostly to avoid looking into those eyes; he had a feeling that he'd break down if he did, and he knew Riff wouldn't believe any half-baked excuse he fed him as to why.
His next words were whispered, and he allowed a bit of the emotion in his throat to leak out with them, though the words themselves would most likely cancel it out. A good thing, as far as Cain was concerned; he was a bit of a masochist, and even though it tore at his heart to do so, he couldn't resist the temptation to let his feelings out every so often, as long as he covered adequately for himself.
"But Riff...it's Be Sexually Inappropriate With Your Friends Day."
Riff quirked a brow, sighing a bit but rolled his eyes affectionately nonetheless. He should know better than to try to ask Cain to do anything he didn’t feel like. “Have you been giving this much thought? Talking about drawing out my eyes… Was six months really that long for you?” He mused, half apologetic half amused. The trip to France had been a once in a lifetime opportunity for someone of his financial background, not to mention how it would look on future applications. He hadn’t been aware that it would affect his friend so, if he was waxing on about the color of his eyes.
He stiffened a bit under Cain’s fingers, trying to catch the expression on his friend’s face as he watched him undo the top three buttons, suddenly aware at how closely pressed they were against each other. If he had thought he was a bit uncomfortable before, he was now. “Cain…?” He asked, trying not to sound too bothered. Toying with his ear and sitting on his lap was one thing. Toying with his clothes was something else entirely.
He wasn’t sure whether he was supposed to laugh in relief or at the joke, and while the explanation seemed a bit off, it could have been something stranger. “Well then…” He said, leaning forward next to Cain’s own ear, just to show he could take a joke, and if that was the case, that Riff could dish anything back out that Cain would. “If you don’t want it to be Castrated by an Angry Mother Day because of Inappropriate Actions, I would get off.”
(What be these sexual innuendos you speak of? o.O)
(Which, Be Sexually Inappropriate With Your Friends Day? xD)
"Ooh, I can get off, certainly," Cain countered, grinning wildly in an attempt to bash the emotions in his throat back down to the pit of his stomach, where they would be suitably ignored. He playfully shoved his hips forward and thought of his aunt Katina to keep any possible physical reactions at bay. "Mmm, I could probably get YOU off, as well..." he teased. At the look on Riff's face, though, he decided to be merciful and extract himself from his lap.
He took up residence on the kitchen counter, resisting the temptation to kick his feet against the cupboard under him in case Mrs. Raffit decided to peek in.
"You've no idea, darling," he said in response to Riff's earlier comment. He let his gaze wander to the yard outside the window. "But it was a wonderful opportunity for you, and it would be horribly selfish of me to try and tell you not to go. Yes, I sorely missed you, but I'm thrilled that you got to go," he answered, honestly and decisively. He turned to face Riff and gave him a little smile. "If such an opportunity were to come up again, I'd even finance the thing for you. You deserve better than this place." /You deserve better than me./
"Enough of that," Cain interrupted himself gaily. "Open your present, and then I want to hear absolutely everything about France." His friendship with Riff was the most important thing, after all; unrequited emotions were painful and tedious, but they'd go away eventually. He just needed to give it time.
(XD Ja, and getting off and whatnot. Good times?)
Startled when Cain jerked closer to him, Riff griped his friend’s hips, in an effort to steady him, bring him closer, or keep him still. Honestly, he didn’t know which deity to thank that his mother hadn’t walked in on the scene. “I have no doubt. How many love sick admirers have you gone through while I was away?” Riff asked dryly, letting go of his friend once common sense overcame him and he slid off his lap. “And while you often wear clothes of the gender I prefer, I doubt you have made me as depraved as Oscar or Crehador. Which is good for you, since unlike them, I have easy access to your bedroom. Think of what bad could happen.” Riff said, slightly amused at the thought. Honestly, him taking advantage of Cain?
His gaze softened when Cain exhibited the rarely seen but always there generosity and thoughtfulness that so endeared him to his friend. Though some would believe he was spoiled and childish, Cain had his moments. It just depended on present company. “Next time you should come with me. It wasn’t much fun without you.” Riff said, before complying with Cain’s request and picked up the present Cain had shoved at him earlier. “Open yours too. I’m no good at receiving presents, and worse when I know you’re watching me.” Riff said, nudging his carefully wrapped gift towards his friend.
“France,” he started off, “has the absolute best architecture I have seen. It’s so elegant and breath taking and all so delicately crafted. My host family took me to Notre-Dame de Reims and it was all so beautiful I could have wept. They don’t make buildings like that anymore…”
(^^; Sorry; Cain's a bit of a minx, ne?)
Cain KNEW Riff was straight--he'd ALWAYS known Riff was straight--and yet, some little part of him wanted desperately to believe that the other would someday return his feelings, if he could just be pretty enough--smart enough--sweet enough--but Cain was missing something, the something that would make Riff love him back.
In the first few months since he had realized that his feelings toward his best friend were considerably more than normal, he had spent hours analyzing the situation, trying to break it down into a formula, to figure out the Key Ingredient That Would Make Riff Love Him, but he had never quite succeeded. It took him another few months to realize that the missing ingredient was estrogen, but even so, Cain was too stubborn (or possibly too stupid) to give up just yet; that had been the birth of Gender-Ambiguous Cain, but it still hadn't been enough. Riff persistently pursued women, and only women, and Cain gradually began to lose hope. And yet--and yet, there was one minuscule part of him that refused to give in, and persistently maintained the possibility that maybe Riff was very slightly bisexual, and just hadn't realized it yet. It was that part of him that Riff's casual words burned and stung, and that small part wept a little from it.
/What if I wanted--/
Cain took slow breaths, using the package shoved towards him as a welcome distraction, enabling him to gather himself discreetly. He took his time to open the parcel, focusing on the words Riff was speaking now, instead of the ones spoken earlier.
"I shall consider it, though I think France would end up worse for the wear if the two of us were to take it by storm," he replied, wincing a little at the depth of his voice, which had dropped slightly due to the hurt he'd been surprised with. He reached for his forgotten tea and took a drink, clearing his throat lightly when he was done.
Feeling composed enough, Cain looked up as Riff began describing the architecture in France. His eyes looked far away; dreamy, really. Cain smiled softly. This side of Riff was very rarely exhibited, and usually only when he was discussing tea.
"It sounds beautiful," he murmured. "Please tell me you have photographs." And oh, look, the package was open. Riff hadn't finished his yet.
Carefully, Cain peeked inside.