Title: Some Nights
Word Count 325
Some nights they dared it. Some nights, the watch rotation, and the sea, and the Gods that love young love made it safe enough to gamble. Some nights they could not stand it any longer.
“I'll be so quiet, Oh, oh. Archie.”
Horatio was the noisy one. They both knew it.
They had been given two tiny chambers, divided by a canvas partition, weighted with lead shot. They had tied the partition back, the first day. This gave them one room, still tiny, with room for two sea-chests, two washbasins, two little desks, and two hammocks. There was enough room to lie on the deck together, close.
Now they stood in the dim light of Archie's half, and Archie, smiling drew Horatio in. He could feel Horatio's hands in his hair, undoing the tight black ribbon, pulling Archie's hair free to spill down his back, and mark the end of the day
Horatio's hands were warm under it, on the back of Archie's neck. Horatio's fingers were knowing on him, rubbing his shoulders. Archie's shoulders were strong. They were solid. They were the widest part of him. When they were clothed in his uniform they looked as if they had been made to Naval standards specially. But they ached, by the end of each day. Here, alone with Horatio, he could sag, if he wished. He could root his nose and cheek and up under Horatio's chin. He could deliquesce,
“Hmmm.” Archie let his head fall back.
“You sound like Jeoffrey Mittens.” Horatio's mouth was muffled, pressed as it was to the angle of Archie's jaw. Archie opened his eyes and blinked slowly.
“He must be doing something right-- everybody strokes him.”
“You want to be stroked? By-- everybody?” Horatio was both amused and dubious.
“No. Just by you.”
“Ah. Well then. That's all right.”