Hi! I love your writing! Can you write an Andriel fic where someone (nathan's men, burglar, you decide!) breaks into Neil's apartment while he's face timing with Andrew and Andrew is all worried and stuff over the phone :)
thank you so so much, precious anon! ask and you shall receive. also on AO3.
“And if I move Davis to the left, then Salazar has way too much ground to cover. But if I don’t, then he’ll have to keep up with Rhodes, and we all know he can’t handle her…” Neil is going round and round with these ideas for new plays, mostly to himself. Andrew flicks his eyes away from the zucchini he is currently dicing to look at Neil on his computer screen, scribbling away in his notebook approximately 1,226 miles away.
He watches Neil stop writing. Tilt his head to left. Sigh. And draw a giant X over everything he’s been working on for the past hour and a half.
Andrew rolls his eyes and shakes his head, though he really doesn’t know why he is surprised. Neil’s new position as the leading striker on the Baton Rouge Pirates includes more responsibilities than he had on his first pro team. Neil will undoubtedly be up for several hours working on this one play, and Andrew will be a silent spectator, contributing the occasional snarky comment when asked for his opinion.
Finished with the zucchini, Andrew adds it in with the rest of the vegetables and tosses them into the pan with his already sizzling potatoes. He moves to the sink to rinse the knife he was using and return it to the knife block on the counter, a house-warming gift from Bee.
Neil is still thinking out loud, going on about Davis’s apparent lack of speed and general know-how. Truthfully, Andrew could not care less about any of it. But he finds that just the even sound of Neil’s voice makes him feel more relaxed, a little less on edge than usual. Even if he is just droning on about Exy, it’s almost like they aren’t on different sides of the country. They FaceTime at least twice a week, and it brings Andrew much more comfort than he will ever be willing to admit. He likes Denver, but not as much as he hates Neil.
“Ugh! I’m done. I’m so done. If I look at this for another second, I’ll light it on fire,” comes Neil’s exasperated complaint. Andrew is tending to his vegetables, but he can hear the shuffling of paper and what sounds like a pen hitting a wall.
“Luckily for you, I disabled your fire alarm,” Andrew says, purposefully ignoring Neil’s tantrum.
Andrew turns in time to witness Neil’s dramatic sigh, complete with his head rather forcefully meeting his folded arms on the table. Andrew rolls his eyes, yet again, and turns the stove off before plating his masterpiece. He walks over to where his laptop is sitting on the counter and picks it up, taking Neil with him to the table. Neil must notice all the noise because he finally sits back up and rests his chin in his hand.
They look at each other for a moment before Andrew drags his gaze away and settles his attention on something else, anything else. This is his least favorite part. The way they can see and hear each other, almost feel like they’re together, but then he can’t even make actual eye contact with Neil. It’s trivial, really. It shouldn’t bother him this much, but it does. The awkward cycle of looking at Neil, then looking at the tiny screen in the corner housing his own reflection, then attempting to look into the camera like maybe Neil will understand what Andrew won’t say.
“Staring,” Andrew says, mainly as a distraction from these unwelcome thoughts.
“Uh-huh,” Neil snorts in response, like he can see right through Andrew. He probably can.
Andrew looks back to see Neil look to his right and let a small smile creep onto his face. He vanishes from view for about thirty seconds, then reappears with an armful of Sir Fat Cat McCatterson.
“Oh look. It’s still alive. Joy.”
Neil laughs. “Shut up, you adore him and you know it.”
“I hate him slightly less than I hate most other things.”
Neil tosses Andrew a triumphant smile. “Exactly.”
Andrew offers only a noncommittal grunt in return.
“So what should we do when I’m off next week? I bought my ticket already, by the way. I get in at 9:45 Sunday night.”
“We could drive to the top of Mount Evans, and I could leave you there,” Andrew replies.
“Finally find a decent place to hide my body? I’m actually a little disappointed. You should at least cross state lines, getting rid of me a mere 65 miles away is too suspicious. You know they always suspect the boyfriend first.”
Andrew lets the term slide in favor of silently flipping Neil off.
Neil’s ensuing laughter is cut short when he turns his head sharply to the left, toward his front door.
“What?” Andrew asks.
Neil is quiet for several seconds, much too long for Andrew’s liking.