The Blue Lights, The Scent of Water

Four linked scenes of intimacy, during Frau and Teito’s journeys. Teito is stubborn, Frau knows he’s doomed, Mikhail snarks briefly. Mild spoilers through issue 61. Drama, Fluff, Romance, Porn, I-4

Character(s): Frau, Mikhail, Teito Klein
Pairing(s): Frau/Teito

Translation into Deutsch available: Die Blauen Lichter, Der Geruch von Wasser by JanaTearce

A translation into Russian is available here, by Opossums


Frau leaned back on the hostel bed they’d secured for the night, every pillow in the room wadded behind his back, and lit a cigarette. They’d made it to Pirna by dark and the border and Neal were a day away. Capella was safe with his mother, no one was chasing them, and he’d gotten the shower first. Things were going about as well as could be expected.

He hadn’t failed in the people under his care, yet, anyway. None of the ones that really mattered, at least.

Some days, especially lately, he felt like there were too many of those. But compared to most of the Church’s bishops he had very few responsibilities. Host Zehel’s spirit in his own. Keep Verloren’s damn scythe contained. Protect Teito. Oh, and banish all the Kor he came across. Just a few, but they were heavy enough he didn’t have room for any of the others more normal bishops carried. Not any more.

Well neither did the brat, come to that.

So, yeah, it was probably a good thing that he’d been the one sent out with Teito. Sure as hell no other bishop would understand what the kid was carrying on his shoulders. And Frau admitted it: it was good to be flying again. He’d felt so fucking grounded the last nine years, locked up in that cathedral.

The end of his cigarette glowed as he breathed in the rough heat of smoke, eyes distant. If he could just keep the brat safe, he’d almost feel like this trip was a good thing.

Teito emerged from the bathroom rubbing a towel over his head, with the spare one slung around his hips. “You’re hogging the pillows,” he accused Frau after one look. “Hand over mine.”

Frau blew smoke at the ceiling. “Since I’m paying for the rooms,” he mused, “I think they’re actually all my pillows.”

“The Church is paying, you leech. Gimme.” Teito made to grab some of the pillows out from behind Frau, dodging his elbow. “Mortification of the flesh is supposed to be virtuous, isn’t it? You’re the bishop, act like it!”

“Since when do I give a shit about virtue?” Frau demanded, grabbing for those thieving hands.

Teito froze in his grip and his bared teeth slowly faded into a frown. “How long have you been sitting there in nothing but a towel?” The frown was turning into a real glare. “You’ve gotten cold again!” He stomped around the room pulling blankets out of the cupboard and threw them over Frau, tugging them roughly around him. Frau watched the performance with a certain sardonic amusement. Having Capella around had turned on the kid’s mothering instincts for good, it looked like.

“You do realize that, without body heat to start with, these aren’t going to do any good?” He took a drag on his cigarette, mouth quirked as Teito glared some more.

“Fine, then!”

Frau blinked as the kid marched over to the bed and slung a leg over Frau’s thighs, settling firmly onto his lap. Teito pulled the blankets around both of them and gave Frau a look that dared him to object. “There.”

Frau sighed. “You’re too damn stubborn for anyone’s good. It doesn’t hurt or anything, you know.”

“It isn’t right,” Teito said, low and fierce and not looking at him. “It isn’t right for you to be cold.”

Frau rested a hand on the kid’s head, ruffling his hair. “Yeah, it is,” he said quietly. “Because this is what I am.”

Teito frowned at him. “Well…! Well, then, fine! But…” he wrapped his arms firmly around Frau’s neck, “then this is warm too, isn’t it?” He leaned in closer and brushed his lips over Frau’s, unpracticed and unhesitating.

Frau stilled, eyes widening at that soft and completely unexpected pressure. “Wha…” He closed his hands on Teito’s shoulders, moving him back a little. “Haven’t you ever heard of a metaphor, you little maniac?” he demanded. All his damn church training was suddenly screaming in his ear. It was usually only the tedious rules about chastity that got him in trouble, and he didn’t give a damn about those. But the one law about what a person got up to in his own bed that he agreed with wholeheartedly was that no one should ever, ever abuse the trust of the children sheltered by the Church.

Teito gave him one of those rare, clear-eyed looks that made Frau think maybe Castor hadn’t been completely insane to nominate the kid as a bishop. “You’re not dead,” he stated, like it was a known fact, and shook his head as Frau opened his mouth to protest. “You died, but you’re not dead. I’ve made a lot of dead bodies, Frau, and this,” he put a hand flat against Frau’s bare chest, “isn’t like that. Your heart doesn’t beat, but your blood still flows. You move and breathe, but you don’t have any body heat. That’s impossible.” He gave Frau a look like the laws of physics were his personal fault. “So. You’re a spirit-body, aren’t you?”

Frau settled back. He was just a tiny bit impressed. Maybe. “That’s pretty much what we figure, yeah. I mean, with the transforming into huge skeletons and all.”

Teito nodded, satisfied. “I thought so. So, it isn’t just physical heat that can help, right?”

Frau opened his mouth and closed it again. And here he’d thought they’d gotten safely onto theology and away from disturbingly warm kisses. “That doesn’t mean…” He trailed off.

Teito smiled, smugly aware he’d won that point, the little shit. “Yes, it does.” And he hauled off and kissed Frau again, more confident this time.

Frau got a hold of the kid’s nape to pull him back, which… didn’t actually help as much as it should, because Teito made an extremely distracting sound. “Look,” Frau said as flatly as he could, “you’re too young.”

Teito arched both brows, clearly unimpressed. “It’s the new year, right? So I’m sixteen.” He prodded Frau in the chest with a finger. “What were you doing when you were sixteen, huh?”

From the way the kid suddenly smirked, Frau was pretty sure he’d turned a little red. He considered it evidence of a cruel universe that that still happened to a dead man. “Yeah, and maybe if I were sixteen, like the girls I was, yes, okay fine, sleeping with whenever I could escape the damn robes, that would mean something. So how about we just say I’m too old?” And why couldn’t the brat have jumped his partner, like half the baby bishops always wound up doing once the exam heated up?

Teito folded his arms on Frau’s chest and remarked. “Funny you should mention that. I asked Labrador-san, you know. Turns out you’re only twenty.”

Frau closed his eyes, silently cursing Labrador to… to… to an annoying leaf-wilt problem or something. “Teito…” He broke off, breath catching, because Teito had taken the opportunity to press up close against him, skin to skin. The kid really was warm.

“I want you to be warm,” Teito said quietly against his ear. “And I want… to know what this is.” He rested his temple against Frau’s and muttered, “And I trust you, okay?”

Frau gave up and wrapped his arms around Teito, holding him tight and stomping as hard as he could on the stirring interest of the scythe. Sometimes the kid really did remind him so much of himself that it hurt. “You’re an idiot.”

It was time to deal with this logically, Frau told himself, ignoring the way he couldn’t make himself let go. The brat really was sixteen, scrawniness notwithstanding, and that was the age of consent across the Empire. So the rules could shut up. The brat was also world-bendingly stubborn (and kind of unfairly cute when he wasn’t growling and snapping like a bear after winter). So Frau needed a good reason, if he wanted to get out of this. Did he have a good reason? Did he want to get out of this?

Only silence answered that question, inside of him. Waiting silence.

Teito finally drew a shaky breath and pulled back enough to grin at him, almost as convincingly annoying as usual. “I mean, aren’t you supposed to know all about this stuff? Or do you just talk a good line?”

Just because a man’s heart wasn’t beating any more didn’t mean it couldn’t squeeze tight. Frau hadn’t loved all that terribly often, in his life, but he knew when someone was getting to him. This one… had gotten to him. His mouth quirked and he slid a hand up to cradle Teito’s head. “Brat,” he said, just a little husky.

For once, Teito didn’t take a return shot. Just looked at him, eyes dark and questioning. Frau didn’t know what the question was, or what answer Teito saw, but after a moment Teito smiled a little and leaned forward again. This time Frau kissed back, gentle and careful.

Frau had known from the moment he saw the kid move that Teito was trained, and trained to kill. Teito moved fast and sure and fluid, when he wasn’t in a rage, always poised, always ready. The readiness had quieted slowly, over the last few months, and Frau had hoped it meant Teito was relaxing from that edge. Maybe he was, but now, feeling how long it took Teito to unwind as he settled against Frau’s chest, Frau thought he still had a long way to go.

Which made him feel ridiculously fucking protective of the little brat.

So he kissed Teito slow and easy, with helplessly exasperated tenderness, until Teito was flushed and pressing close. Maybe it was just the heat of Teito’s body against his, skin to skin under the blankets; or maybe it was the way Teito’s tongue stroked over his and Teito sighed as he relaxed and stretched out against Frau’s chest; or maybe it really was Teito’s living heart touching his. Whatever the truth, Frau was warm again.

In fact, Frau might just have been a little flushed himself by the time Teito drew back and tucked his head down against Frau’s shoulder. “You okay?” he asked, husky, running a hand slowly up and down Teito’s back.

“Yeah,” Teito answered softly, not moving. After a moment, Frau felt Teito’s lips curve against his shoulder. “I guess you’re not all talk. It might be nice to do that some more some time.”

Frau snorted, trying to stifle the enthusiastic votes yes from both his cock and the scythe. “Damn brat.”

“Now give me half those pillows.”

Frau grinned against Teito’s dark hair. “What if I say no?”

The fight for the pillows left the room a mess, but Frau had to admit it took care of any awkwardness.



Frau had managed to kick Castor and Labrador out of his room in F3’s frozen tourist trap by the time Teito was done with his bath, and had stretched out in his bed, arms folded behind his head. He watched the kid through half-closed eyes as Teito neatly and automatically folded and hung his towel and laid out his clothes for the next day of the race. He didn’t look too much the worse for his encounter with the scythe, even though Frau’s fingertips still tingled with the sensation of reaching into Teito’s chest, stretching out after his bright soul.

Well, Frau had always known Teito was a tough little bastard, and too stubborn to quit.

Every inch of that stubbornness was in Teito’s eyes as he pulled on his nightshirt and made for Frau’s bed instead of his own. Frau stiffened. “Teito…”

“Shut up,” Teito told him, burrowing under the blankets and wrapping around Frau like one of Labrador’s climbing vines. “You’re an idiot, you know that? The more I think about it, the more obvious it is.”

Frau breathed in and out, carefully, holding down the leap of the scythe’s hunger. “Are you actually trying to get eaten?" he bit out. "After you saw yourself what can happen…”

Teito pushed himself up on one elbow, glaring. “I told you! I’ll pull you out of that scythe as many times as it takes! So quit using it as an excuse!”

“Excuse?!” Frau was glaring now, too. “Listen, brat—” He had to break off, jaw tight, and fight down another surge of hunger from the scythe. It growled silently, nearly drooling in Teito’s direction.

As if he could hear it, Teito growled back. His right hand flashed over to clamp tight on Frau’s forearm, over the name incised there. “You,” Teito said, low and cold and deadly, “back off.” A flicker of red shone around his hand for one breath, and Teito’s grip tightened. “He’s mine.”

That was outrageous enough that Frau opened his mouth to protest. His jaw just hung there, though, when the scythe grudgingly settled under Teito’s hand. “What the fuck?”

Teito’s grip eased a little and he glanced aside. “Mikhail,” he muttered. “There’s still a connection even when we’re apart. I guess I don’t have to do anything formal, when I really need him.”

That did, actually, explain a few things. Just not the one about why Frau should mean enough for Teito to risk stressing his soul that way. “And you have the nerve to say I’m an idiot,” Frau scolded, closing his other hand on Teito’s nape to shake him. Teito shrugged and looked up again with a tiny smile.

“It was important,” he insisted, completely unabashed.

“Important, huh?” Frau narrowed his eyes, an expression that sent lowlife of all kinds running in terror and had no effect whatsoever on Teito. Damn it. He tried another tack. “And what’s this about me being yours?”

Teito lifted his chin stubbornly. “You are. My bishop. My mentor. Mine, not the scythe’s!”

Frau let his head fall back against the pillow, groaning. “Fuck. And I always thought Castor was joking when he said God would punish me some day.”

Teito pressed close again, arms wound around Frau’s shoulders. “I’m sure He’ll get to it eventually.”

Frau’s mouth quirked and he slid a hand into Teito’s hair. “Think He has already.” He sighed, more or less resigned to being the kid’s pillow and just glad that Teito hadn’t gotten all metaphysical about warming Frau up again. Castor really would break in and try to strangle him, then.

On the other hand, it was awfully cold out there, and temper was supposed to heat people up too, right? Frau smirked at the ceiling for a moment before reaching down to lift Teito’s chin and kiss him, light and gentle. He forgot the part about yanking Castor’s chain for a moment as Teito relaxed against him, eyes softening as he smiled up at Frau.

“Go to sleep, brat,” Frau said quietly.

Teito made an agreeable sound and snuggled down into the blankets and Frau, and a completely helpless smile tugged at Frau’s mouth.

It turned wide and wicked a moment later, when he heard faint, muffled yelling over the sound of the storm outside, rather as if some manipulative bastard of a bishop was losing his grip and being wrapped up in ice roses by his partner to keep him from breaking in.

Frau closed his eyes, still smirking, and composed himself to sleep.



Frau was aware of all the reasons that restoring the Eye of Mikhail to Teito was necessary, both for Teito and for the rest of the world. He didn’t exactly regret it.

But the first time he looked down at Teito, curled up against him in bed, to see a pair of vastly unimpressed red eyes glaring up at him, he swore his heart started beating against just so it could stop.

“You,” Mikhail declared, as if it were the worst insult possible. “You have been taking liberties with my master.”

That was unfair enough to snap Frau out of his shock. “I damn well have not! Do you have any idea how stubborn the brat is? It’s all I could do to convince him he’s still too small to be fucked by someone my size!”

Mikhail tossed the covers back and looked him up and down disdainfully, which was the kind of thing that could give a man a complex. “Hmph.” He settled back against the pillows like they were a throne, crossing Teito’s arms sulkily. “Well, since you seem to belong to my master now, I suppose I won’t do anything about this.” He held up a finger and eyed Frau sternly. “As long as you don’t get above yourself!”

And then he was gone, and it was Teito’s eyes staring up at him again.

Teito, who promptly dissolved into laughter. “Your face!” he managed.

Frau sputtered. He couldn’t help it. “Belong to you?” he demanded, outraged. “The cat-eyed bastard doesn’t mind as long as I don’t get above myself?!” His voice was echoing off the walls. Teito was still laughing, collapsed among the pillows with his arms wrapped around his stomach. Frau gave him a dour look. “And if you think you’re getting anything out of me tonight…”

Teito caught his breath and crawled into Frau’s lap, grinning. “Would that count as getting above yourself, if you don’t do what I want you to do?” he asked, winding his arms around Frau’s shoulders.

Frau growled and flipped them over, pinning Teito to the bed under him. “…show you ‘above myself’…” He caught that laughing mouth and kissed Teito deep and hard.

Of course, given the breathy sounds Teito made and the way he arched up against Frau, that might have been the whole idea. “Mmm. Frau.” Teito wrapped his legs around Frau’s hips and rubbed his ass against Frau’s cock.

“Not until you’re five inches taller, goddamnit,” Frau gasped, and tried not to show his response when Teito growled. If the brat ever realized just how close he was to getting his way, Frau knew he’d be doomed. And the fact was, Teito was way too impatient to keep from hurting himself, so Frau was the one who had to have self control for both of them.

Frau expected a goddamn sainthood out of this, he really did.

Fortunately, Teito was also pretty distractible, as long as you came up a good enough alternative. Frau slid down his body, tracing the hard muscles of Teito’s stomach with his tongue by way of suggestion. He grinned when Teito let his legs fall back to the bed with a pleased sigh. Teito wasn’t actually unreasonable in bed; he just had a knee-jerk reaction to being told he couldn’t do something. Frau actually kind of sympathized, at least when the brat wasn’t driving him crazy.

Which was why, when he closed his mouth around Teito’s cock, he didn’t tease, just sucked wet and hard until Teito’s hips came up off the bed. Frau smiled around him a little and flicked his tongue back and forth over Teito’s head. Teito moaned, hands working hard against Frau’s shoulders, and rocked up into Frau’s mouth.

It was always moments like these that made Frau reconsider his “not for five inches” rule. Teito was pretty well developed, and there wasn’t an inch of childish softness anywhere on his body. When the weight of Teito’s cock was sliding over his tongue it was a little hard to remember why he kept insisting they wait.

“Frau,” Teito gasped, body pulling taut. Frau made an approving sound and sucked Teito down all the way, and swallowed slowly around him. The cut-off moan that answered as Teito came undone, shuddering under him, would have made him purr except his mouth was full. So he just thought it.

Well, that and smiled smugly down at Teito once he’d kissed his way back up his body, head propped up on one hand. Teito laughed, breathless. “You look like one of the cathedral cats who just stole fish from the fountain,” he told Frau.

“I got you to stop arguing,” Frau pointed out. “I think that’s pretty damn impressive, myself.”

“So why are you reminding me of it again now?” Teito wanted to know, reaching up to trace his fingers over Frau’s mouth.

Frau smiled wickedly. “Never said I didn’t think the arguing was fun.”

Teito growled, and locked one leg around his and flipped them over. Frau smirked up at him, folding his arms behind his head. “Yeah? Something to add?”

“I think so, yes.” Teito’s eyes glinted down at him, and then he was sliding down Frau’s body and pushing his legs apart to settle between them. The look he gave Frau as he leaned over was nearly as wicked as the one Frau’d given him.

Frau managed to stay relaxed and casual right up until Teito’s mouth closed on him, and then he had to grab for the headboard. It was the same every time and he never got used to the heat of a living mouth. If fire could be slick and wet, it was like having fire slide down his cock, and Teito took his time about it. Frau moaned, low and open, and rocked up a little; Teito moved with him, lips wrapped just around Frau’s head. Frau swore, breathless, and Teito snickered.

Evil little bastard was learning Castor’s sense of humor.

When Teito finally slid his mouth further down, Frau shuddered. The heat, the life, the intensity of it were like nothing else, and the strength of Teito’s hand working up and down his cock, slick and confident, felt like the only thing anchoring him to the world.

“Teito,” Frau gasped, warning. He never lasted long when they did this. Teito drew back reluctantly, tongue flicking over him one last time.

“Mm. Just think what it would be like if you were inside me,” he murmured thoughtfully, hand stroking hard down Frau’s cock.

Frau couldn’t quite help thinking, about heat and tightness, and the headboard creaked under his hands as pleasure hammered through him. “Teito…!”

When he caught his breath, the brat was still laughing. “I’ll have to try that again,” he grinned, elbows braced across Frau’s chest. Frau growled and hauled him down to a rough kiss that Teito leaned into readily.

A fucking sainthood, Frau swore.



It hadn’t been Frau’s idea, the first time he wound up in bed with Teito Klein. It hadn’t been his idea to start sharing a bed, whether they did anything more interesting with it than sleep or not. It had been his idea to teach the kid how to use his hands and mouth, but only in self defense. Because the biggest thing that wasn’t his idea was actually fucking someone as slight as Teito with what was, no undue modesty, a damn big cock. He’d held tight to a rule of “not until you’re five inches taller” and insisted that he was not going to fuck someone who didn’t at least come up to his chin.

Teito had pouted. He’d called Frau a chicken. He’d done some really, really unfair things with his mouth and asked Frau again immediately afterward. And eventually he’d gotten quiet and looked up at Frau all clear-eyed and said, “Please”.

Which was how Frau had come to be leaning back against a handful of pillows with Teito straddling his lap and lying against his chest while Frau rubbed slow, gentle fingers between his cheeks. “We’re taking this slow, understand?” he murmured against Teito’s hair.

Teito nodded against his shoulder, arms tightening a little around his neck. “I know. I won’t push.”

Frau’s lips quirked; he didn’t trust that to last very long at all. It was a good start, though. “Okay. Try to stay relaxed, then.” He dipped his fingers in the jar of gel he’d wedged against their pillows, because he’d damn well bought economy size this time, and circled his fingers over Teito’s entrance, slow and hard. Teito’s muscles clenched and gradually relaxed as he breathed out. Frau kept his fingers moving slow and easy, and after a few more breaths Teito gave a soft moan. Frau took a tighter grip on his self-control and pressed a finger into Teito.

Teito’s muscles tightened again sharply, and Frau waited for him to relax again before moving. “All right?” he asked quietly, stroking that one finger inside Teito.

“Yeah.” Teito sounded a little breathless. “Yeah, it’s okay.”

“How does it feel?” Frau pressed, because if Teito was uncomfortable with the length of his finger, he’d need to hold himself back hard from thrusting into the kid later.

A breath of a laugh, and another quick clench of muscles. “It feels like you.” After a moment, Teito added, “I like feeling you.”

Frau closed his eyes and pressed his mouth against Teito’s hair. He’d long ago given himself up for lost. Teito had gotten to him, all the way into him, right down to the heart. Just knowing didn’t mean it wasn’t new and terrifyingly warm, though, every time Teito said something like that. “Glad for that,” he said, husky. Teito looked up at him with a small smile and flushed cheeks, and Frau smiled back wryly. “Ready for more?”

Teito nodded and laid his head back down on Frau’s shoulder, breathing in and out and deliberately relaxing. Frau gathered him up a little closer and pressed a second finger in. It went easily, and Teito made a low sound that Frau was pretty damn sure wasn’t discomfort. He worked them in and out slowly, and Teito stretched against him a little, muscles working around his fingers easily now. He could feel Teito was half hard against him, and spent a moment breathing deeply himself.

“Mmm.” Teito pushed his hips against Frau’s. “Frau…”

“Yeah, okay.” Frau pulled out carefully and scooped up more of the gel. “Tell me if it hurts at all, right?”

“I will,” Teito promised, and Frau could just about hear him rolling his eyes. He snorted softly and pulled Teito close, so he could listen to his body as well as his words, and pushed three fingers into his ass. It was tight, and Frau went very slow, listening to each hitch in Teito’s breath, waiting out each clench of his muscles. Eventually, though, his fingers were all the way in and Teito was moaning softly against his shoulder.

“Frau, move.”

“Pushy,” Frau muttered, a bit husky. But he did as Teito asked, sliding his fingers out to the knuckle and then slowly back in. And again. Teito moaned every time his fingers slid all the way home, and Frau was starting to wonder if he was going to have to eat his words because it sure as hell sounded like Teito really liked being stretched open hard. And it felt like he could take it.

“Not pushy,” Teito panted. “Just… ohh… want to feel you.” He ground his hips against Frau’s and they both groaned.

“Fuck, all right, you win, okay?” Frau kissed the start of a grin off Teito’s mouth, fiercely, and Teito wound his arms tighter around Frau’s neck and kissed back, eyes dark and half closed. Frau groped for the gel again, still kissing Teito, and slicked it over his cock. Teito obligingly slid up a little, and Frau’s arm tightened around him. “Slow,” he growled against Teito’s mouth, guiding his cock against Teito.

Teito huffed, but let Frau set their pace. His head tipped back and he gasped sharply as Frau started to push in. “Ahh… oh…” His arms tightened as Frau hesitated. “Don’t stop.”

Frau, already breathing hard with the burn of pleasure down his nerves, clenched his jaw and pushed up into Teito bit by tiny bit. And then he was in, sliding in smoothly, and Teito’s gasps turned into a throaty moan. The alarming tightness of his body eased and he lay against Frau’s chest panting as Frau pressed most of the way in.

“You okay?” Frau managed, husky, holding him tight, lightheaded with the burning heat of Teito’s body.

“Mm, yeah.” Teito slowly pushed himself upright against Frau’s chest, lips parted as he settled down a little further onto Frau. “Oh…”

Frau swore fervently, hands tight on Teito’s hips, and Teito grinned breathlessly at him, the little bastard. “I am going to be so glad when you are five goddamn inches taller,” Frau growled, “so that I can pound your ass into the mattress like you fucking well deserve.” In lieu of that, he flexed his hips slow and hard, drawing back and driving up into Teito again, careful not to push in too far. Teito lost the grin, at least, as he clutched Frau’s shoulders and moaned out loud.

“Feels good,” Teito breathed as Frau fucked him slowly. “Hard…”

And, yeah, Frau could feel how hard Teito was stretched around him, and it was driving him a little crazy to have all that living, branding heat locked so tight around him. “Teito…”

Teito arched over him and sighed, eyes half closed as he pushed down to meet Frau, and Frau groaned. One of these days, he swore, the kid really was going to kill him.

Today, though, was his first time doing this, and Frau knew going too long would be a mistake. So he stroked a hand down the leanness of Teito’s body to wrap around his cock and pump it slow and hard.

“Ahh!” Teito’s hands clenched on Frau’s shoulders again, and Frau watched him, drinking in the life and brilliance of him, the abandon as Teito rocked wantonly between his hand and his cock. The way his name spilled from Teito’s lips made something hot and possessive tighten through him. When Teito’s body finally clamped down around him, he growled, driving up into that tightness with short, hungry thrusts until pleasure raked him over the edge.

When the fire finally stopped wringing his nerves out, Frau gathered Teito back down against him and eased carefully out. Teito winced, and Frau rubbed a hand up and down his back. “Okay?” he asked softly.

“Yeah,” Teito answered, just as soft. And then he poked Frau in the chest. “And it didn’t hurt.”

Frau snorted and slid his hand down to cup Teito’s ass gently. “If you can ride the damn hawkzile tomorrow and still say that, I’ll be impressed.” He could feel Teito’s face heat against his shoulder and chuckled, threading his fingers into Teito’s hair. “I’m a little impressed already,” he admitted.

Teito glanced up with a rare, unguarded smile, bright and sweet. Frau held him closer and tried not to self-evidently melt into a puddle of pathetic gooeyness.

Teito would seriously be the death of him, some day. Frau was becoming increasingly sure of this, and not in a metaphorical way, because life was a bastard like that.

For as long as he had, though, Frau would stay close to the pure warmth and insane stubbornness of Teito’s heart, and be grateful.