Lunch was, Johnny later realised, a complete blur. He remembered where they'd gone -- Ernie's -- because he'd been taken by surprise. The tiny bar and grill wasn't the sort of place he'd expected someone like Kelly Brackett to go to. It wasn't very near the hospital; there were several dozen places to go which were closer, but as they'd walked in Johnny had appreciated seeing no one he recognised from Rampart. He didn't need gossip spreading back to Rampart, to the paramedics, and from there throughout the fire deparment. Love was one thing; losing your job because of it, was another.

They'd sat down and proceeded to enjoy lunch for the next forty-five minutes. At least that was Johnny's impression when they finally left. All he really remembered was that he'd eaten everything on his plate, and made Kel laugh four times. Now he was standing in Rampart's parking lot with Kel about to head back inside and himself about to head for his Jeep. Kel had a funny look on his face which was making Johnny's stomach tighten. It tightened further when he heard Kel ask, "Do you have any plans this evening?"

Johnny grinned. Kel sounded almost nervous. It made him feel better about the sensation in his own gut. "Not yet," he said as breezily as he could.

Kel smiled; Johnny's stomach did a small flip. He hoped it landed properly. "I'm supposed to get off work at 7. You know how it goes -- I'm not exactly sure when I'll get out of here."

"Yeah, I know. Don't worry about it -- any time before 8 tomorrow morning will be fine." Johnny couldn't stop grinning. His face was going to hurt later, he just knew it. But he couldn't stop grinning.

Kel looked surprised. "8 *tomorrow*?"

"I gotta be at the station at 9."

Five times. That made five times he'd made Kel laugh.

Finally Kel started towards the emergency entrance. "I'll try to be there around 7.30; if not, I'll call before I come over," he said before he got too far away. There was no one near to overhear them, Johnny was relieved to notice.

"Sounds good. I'll see you later, then."

Johnny watched him walk away, watched until Kel was nearly to the double doors. Then he realised he probably didn't want anyone asking him why on earth he was standing there, watching Kelly Brackett walk into the hospital and he turned away, heading for his Jeep.

It was nearly 1 now, that gave him at least five hours. He stopped, and groaned. And his place was an absolute *wreck*. 'Well,' he told himself. 'At least I have five hours to get ready.'

By the time the doorbell rang the apartment was clean -- and *he* was a total wreck. Johnny tried to calm himself down again as he went to answer the door. When he opened it, all the nervousness rushed to the back of his mind. "Hi."

Kel smiled back, and Johnny remembered how much seeing that smile could make his entire day. "Hi."

"Come on in." Johnny stepped back, out of the way.


"Have you eaten?" It was nearly 8.30; when Kel had called to tell him he was on his way over Johnny had forgotten to ask.

"No. I wasn't sure if--"

"I've got a pizza staying warm in the oven," Johnny said before Kel could continue. "I didn't want to inflict my cooking on you so I had one delivered."

Again that smile. Johnny felt that tightening in his stomach. He wondered if he'd get used to that smile.

"I wondered what smelled so good. John," Kel suddenly sounded serious.

Johnny had been about to lead the way to the kitchen. Now he stopped, frowning slightly. "Yeah?"

"I hope this doesn't sound to forward but I wanted to ask -- am I staying the night?"

Johnny wanted to blink. It wasn't like he'd never spent a hundred nights thinking about taking Kel to bed. Or to a shower, or the couch, or wherever was handiest. But he'd have sworn Kel wouldn't ever just come out and ask.

From Kel's reaction, Johnny figured he was grinning, again. "Yeah, if you want," he heard himself say calmly.

Kel came a step closer. "Then you won't mind if I do this."

He took Johnny's face in his hands, and kissed him. That was two. His lips were soft, and dry; as soon as Johnny noted those things Kel opened his mouth and he stopped taking notes.

Johnny blinked at him, when Kel finally broke away. Kel was looking at him and Johnny had no idea what he was thinking; he had the oddest impression that even if he tried to move, he would not be able to break Kel's gaze. He shivered.

"If you do that again...."

"What?" There was the faintest look of a smile.

"I'd better turn the oven off. If I get a fire in my kitchen the guys'll never let me hear the end of it."

Six. And he hadn't even been meaning to make him laugh that time.

"Did you want to eat first?" Kel asked, still touching Johnny's face as if the answer would mean nothing, as if the question had barely been asked.

Except the answer wasn't going to be yes, so it didn't matter. Johnny shook his head and tried to remember where the bedroom was from where they were standing. Something about the way Kel was looking at him was making it very difficult to think.

So Johnny kissed him, and didn't worry about such things as beds. He slipped his arms around Kel's waist and held onto him; the sensation of the other man's body, pressed against his own, brought this all crashing into his awareness. This was real; this was actually happening. No mere dream at dawn -- Kel was kissing him, holding him, asking him....

"Do you want to go someplace more comfortable?"

"Like what? Oh!" Johnny shook himself, then grinned. "Yeah. Yeah... come on." He slid his hand down Kel's hip, then took Kel's hand. One step back, and Kel was following. Smiling, and still staring at him like he wasn't ever going to stop.

Johnny swallowed nervously, and kept his mind and eyes on that smile, instead. That got him down the short hall, into the bedroom, and facing Kel once again. He gave Kel a light kiss before bringing his hands to Kel's jacket.

"Can I?" he asked.

"I'd be disappointed if you didn't. That jacket is dry-clean only."

Johnny laughed, and suddenly the nervousness vanished. He felt hands on his back and responded as they nudged him forward. Once again he was tight in an embrace, kissing and being kissed, holding and moving his hands, being held and being touched.

He managed to scoot Kel's jacket off his shoulders; that broke them away long enough for him to remove it completely and drape it over the back of a chair. Kel was watching him again, a burning gaze making Johnny feel as if he were already stripped and being held down. He shivered, then removed his shirt. The gaze never wavered.

With a grin Johnny decided to test that gaze. He brought one hand to his chest; Kel stared. Johnny lowered the hand to his waist slowly; Kel's eyes dropped with it, widening slightly as he fingered the waistband. He toyed with the button -- and found Kel giving him a bemused look.

"Are you saying I'm staring?"

"I was just checking," Johnny returned easily.

Kel came forward again. He slipped his arms around Johnny's waist and placed his hands flat on Johnny's back. "I like finally being able to stare at you. I think I'm gonna look forward to staring at you a lot."

"Oh yeah?" He felt Kel's erection, hard against his own. Real, his mind whispered. Oh, so very real. "You figure on just watching the whole thing, then?"

Kel's eyes went dark. "Maybe another time." He kissed Johnny, hard. When he broke off he said, "Definitely another time. For now -- get the rest of those clothes off before I tear something you'll have to replace."

Johnny felt Kel's hands at his waist -- not sure when they'd moved from his back, but they were definitely tugging at his waistband in a very clear and determined way. "Since you put it that way...." He quickly moved to finish undressing.

Luckily for his nerves, Kel didn't simply watch. He stepped back and removed his shirt. Johnny found himself staring as Kel opened his pants, made to push them down. Johnny kicked off his own and moved forward, taking the cloth in his own hands and drawing them down. He was on his knees, holding onto Kel's legs, feeling them trembling slightly.

He realised he could hear Kel gasping softly, and he ran his hands up and down again. Another gasp, and Kel grabbed onto his shoulders. Johnny looked up and found Kel staring down at him. "Can I?" Johnny whispered.

Kel just nodded. Johnny brought his hands up, pressed them flat against Kel's hips where he could feel the muscles contracting as Kel tried to remain balanced. He traced one with his fingertips: the muscle over each hip, tightening as Kel tried to brace his legs. "Tensor fasciate latae."

Kel laughed.

Johnny looked up at him and grinned. He moved his hands in, towards the front. "Ilaicus."

This time Kel caught his breath. His face still looked amused but his laughter was replaced by a long inhalation.

"Pectineus," Johnny whispered, as his fingers moved in again, barely any distance away from the erection he could see, its hard silhouette in white cotton.

"If you want an anatomy lesson," Kel began, in what Johnny guessed would have been a threatening tone had he been able to speak clearly.

Johnny moved his hands anyhow, and closed his eyes. Kel hissed sharply as Johnny's hands touched him; Johnny felt, slowly, the entire length of Kel's erection. Twice, up and down, then he pulled Kel's underwear out of the way.

He traced the bare length with one finger, then brushed the scrotum lightly. When he heard Kel try to speak again he moved forward and took it in his mouth.

Kel cried out something unintelligible. Johnny took him into his mouth as far as he could, then let go and began licking. He held onto Kel's testicles with one hand, held onto Kel's leg with the other. He could feel his lover start to sway, and took one moment to rearrange things. He stood up and took Kel by the arms and walked him backwards two steps.


Johnny gave him a nudge, and Kel took a half-step more and came up against the wall. With a grin, Johnny went back to his knees.

"Oh god...."

Johnny gave Kel's leg a push, moving it to the side as he resumed his ministrations. He gave another lick, tugged ever so gently on one testicle and heard the resulting moan. He rested his hand on Kel's knee once more, but now, without worrying about him falling over and requiring a call for the on-duty paramedics, Johnny could ignore the way Kel's legs were shaking and the way he was exclaiming incoherently.

A hand grabbed his shoulder; Johnny opened his mouth again. He heard his name, then nothing more as he began to suck. Only the clutching of the fingers on his shoulder and the thrusts of Kel's hips told him that Kel was still there. Glancing up, Johnny saw him -- head thrown back, throat tight, face tense -- teetering on the edge that Johnny was about to tip him over.

He gripped Kel's leg tightly, and took him as deeply as he could.

Kel screamed. Johnny held him as well as he could, still sucking and still rolling the testicles in his hand. He could feel every tiny thrust that preceded every shot of semen hitting the back of his throat. As he swallowed, he felt Kel beginning to relax; just before Kel would have fallen, Johnny was on his feet, gathering him close and turning them towards the bed.

As they fell, Kel opened his eyes and grinned. He rolled Johnny onto his back, and whispered, "Now, hold still."

Johnny was completely unable to comply.

The next morning the alarm went off at 6.30. Johnny reached out and shut it off by instinct, barely aware he had done so until the warm body in his arms asked, "Do we have to get up?"

"Not if you don't want to," he answered, smiling. He felt Kel snuggle closer by way of reply.

They lay there for a moment before Kel asked, "How much time *do* we have?"

Johnny looked over at him, and grinned. "An hour."

Kel blinked. "An *hour*?"

"Yeah. I like having plenty of time in the mornings."

"For what?"

Johnny wriggled a little, until he was closer to Kel's face. "For anything." Then he kissed him.

When he stopped, Kel smiled back. "Oh, really?"

"Yeah, sometimes," Johnny paused for another kiss, then continued to do so after every third word. "I like to read the paper, or catch the news... or something I like an extra long, hot shower."

By the time he'd finished his sentence neither of them were listening.

They ended up eating reheated pizza for breakfast, after a quick shower. When they finally made their way out it was nearly 8. Kel gave him one last kiss, before Johnny opened the door.

"Ah, you do that we're gonna be late." Johnny reminded himself that traffic would be bad, and he didn't need to spend even five more minutes delaying.

"You'll be late. I don't have to be at work until this afternoon." Kel said, wholly unapologetically.

"Yeah, and I bet you know the boss, too," Johnny replied, giving Kel a nudge out the door. He managed to get it shut and locked behind him without giving into that voice in his head which was telling him he ought to stay home.

Kel just laughed.

They chatted on the way downstairs, and as Kel headed for his car he said, "I'll probably see you later, at Rampart."

"Yeah." Johnny stopped. Kel was smiling again. He had to stop himself from touching that smile. "I'll see you," he finally said, and turned towards his jeep.

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