ok but listen to me i know andrew is meant to have the emotional capacities of a toaster oven and i know he’s supposed to be all dead inside but don’t tell me that andrew isn’t the most sappy little shit in his own unique way bc like,,,

  • he literally dresses neil up everytime they’re having a night out?? like he actually takes the time to go out and pick something nice out for him to wear like whaaa. 
  • here take the keys to my home & oh btw i had duplicate keys made for you so you can drive my car around like whenever you want to so yea feel free also here are some custom made arm bands that match mine to like a tee 
  • he has no problems choosing his boyfriend over his brother 
  • “you are a pipe dream.“ 
  • he GIVES HIM A BATH ?!?! he towel dries him after??
  • he HelPS neil out of his t-shirt when he’s too sore to manage it by himself?? 
  • he’s so weak for neil that he’s constantly reaching out to touch him?? i mean c'mon people he was tapping his fingers against the pulse point of neil’s throat, i mean who does that, even with their crushes, who does that???? esp when it’s important to note he doesn’t normally enjoy physical contact & rarely ever initiates it but the tHIRST is rEAL !!! 
  • shitty middle school level flirting: "i’m not a math problem,” “but i’ll still solve you” “i need a new toy to play with” “i don’t like to share” like affghs this boy
  • matching phones, matching RINGTONES, wtf andrew we know you’re a twin but does everything have to come in twos??
  • he’s all about that rooftop romance aesthetic, chain-smoking at 2 am, trading retorts and kisses in the dark
  • he likes wearing fuckign skull caps. skull caps.
  • he has a thing for long drives 
  • he kissed neil like the world started & stopped at neil’s mouth, yea, you remember that line?? me too. i almost birthed my kidney when i read it.

But yeah Andrew is the softer one in the relationship:

- This is a part of him he thinks must be in new bloom. The world says rough, the world says weapon, the world says joyless and so there must be some truth to it, right? Yet he finds himself wanting to cradle Neil’s hands to his chest when he needs steadying from a nightmare, have Neil’s bare wrist pressed flush against his ribs so that he can feel their pulses thrumming against one another. And he can’t sleep at night until he’s ran slow, deliberate fingers through Neil’s soft hair, every comb-through an indulgence, fingers massaging Neil’s delicate scalp, learning the structure, the very shape of it. He wants to press his lips to every scab, every contusion, everywhere Neil tore himself apart in hopes of survival. He wants to alleviate and cradle and absorb. 
- Neil often ends up kicking his own blankets off of himself at night, and in the winters it drives Andrew absolutely crazy, so he’ll wake up a couple of times in the middle of the night just to fix Neil’s blanket and pull the covers back up over his shoulders to keep him from shivering too much, right before closing his arms down over Neil’s middle like a brace like a ring of fire.
- Andrew likes to tease Neil about being clingy, but there are times when it’s difficult to say if there’s something wrong with his system or if being separated from Neil for longer than a few hours at a time has him emptied and aching in more ways than one. One particular evening at Sweetie’s, while watching Neil, Nicky and Kevin engage in some idle conversation he doesn’t remotely care to pay attention to, Andrew subtly tilts his cone in Neil’s direction. Neil regards it a moment before gladly accepting the soft serve and taking a small bite out of it. They share the rest of the cone together. Nicky attempts to tease them about it at one point, but stops mid sentence when he catches Andrew’s murder-glare from his periphery and changes topic. Andrew will never admit it, but once it becomes a quiet, shared ritual; he likes getting a little ice cream on his nose on purpose so that Neil has the urge to kiss it off. Slowly it becomes ok, even in  public.
- There are nights when Andrew lets Neil wrap his arms around his stomach and pull him close, his chin on his shoulder, Andrew’s back digging into Neil’s chest. Andrew sleeps better when he can feel Neil’s heart beating against his spine. It leaves him strangely warm and punch-drunk. 
- Sometimes in the midst of exploring, Andrew will take Neil’s hands and press them to his own diaphragm over his t-shirt so that Andrew’s breaths can do the speaking for the wordless, happy hum that he’s feeling. He likes Neil’s palm resting there, at the centre of him.
- Andrew anchors his fingers in the back collar of Neil’s sweatshirt whenever he feels Neil tense by his side. As soon as Neil’s on edge, all it takes is for Andrew to hook his fingers and give a light tug on his clothes to reground him. Other times he’ll bunch his hand in the hem of Neil’s t-shirt and twist or press a steering hand around the back of his neck, but never to control. Always to guide. Neil will never not be amazed by the impact the slightest contact with Andrew can make on his nervous system.
- Andrew strives to smoothen out his hard edges, catches tail ends of hushed conversations where the Foxes relay mutual shock at noticing the incurvated places where Andrew lets himself cave in, allowing himself to be vulnerable, allowing himself to be worshipped. The devotion and unrepentant trust that builds a monolith within him when Neil fiercely defends him. “I don’t need your useless concern,” he’ll mutter. “Too bad because you’ve got it,” Neil will usually reply. “They have to stop preying on you at every given chance. You’re not a monster to me. You shouldn’t be a monster to anyone. If they fail to understand that, they’ll be sorry.” Andrew’s tone is offhanded. “I don’t care about what they think. Nor should you.” Neil just shakes his head. “We’re family. We have to treat each other like one.” The words bite at the crumbs of Andrew’s nonchalant demeanor and he lets his guard down wholeheartedly. It’s an understanding. He and Neil have something that the rest of the world can only dream of, and nobody can take that away from them.
- Neil often spends time bare-chested with Andrew so that he can further familiarize himself with the feel of Neil’s lacerated skin and by the time they’re falling asleep, Andrew almost invariably ends up wearing Neil’s oversized hoodie he shed earlier to bed.     
 - He doesn’t feel particularly gentle, but Neil insists that he is. “You’re always so careful,” Neil’s voice is thick with some unchained emotion, yet conversational as he runs fingers over Andrew’s split knuckles. The night air is humid and dark, rain-heavy clouds blot out the stars. They feel exhausted after a particularly grueling game, like battlefields after war, but the heat of Andrew’s body is lilting and makes Neil feel kind of dreamy. “With me, I mean. Nobody else has ever been that considerate.” Andrew’s blank amber eyes stare back at him, shone like opals in the campus lights reflecting from down below. “It’s not concern,” Neil nods in agreement. “No, it’s not.” Andrew then wordlessly takes their entwined hands and holds them against the side of his jaw, just below his cheek. Neil reacts with an elaboration. “Even though it’s always yes with you, you understand that some days it might be a difficult yes. You don’t touch to feast, you touch to steady. You make me feel safe and like I exist. You go about it like flower picking, if that even makes any sense. Cautious but hot, never incomplete and still somehow leaving me wanting more.” Now Neil’s smiling and nudging Andrew’s foot with his own. Their hands still twined at Andrew’s throat. “It’s really sweet.” Neil expects a comeback, an evasion, an immediate it is not but instead Andrew’s silence is pensive. Neil can feel him swallow against his fingers. The swift bob up and back down. “I don’t ever want you to feel like you have to.” He finally declares. Neil’s heart enflames as he leans in, close enough to Andrew’s mouth that he can taste his breath on his tongue, an inch keeping from tipping over into a kiss. “And I don’t ever want you to feel like I don’t want to. Because I do. I want so much it scares me. Pretty weird, right? Going from being nothing to wanting so much.” They gaze patiently at one another, not kissing, breaths spreading against lips like ripples in a pond. “What if I stopped asking?” Andrew’s voice is barely a whisper, hoarse; afraid almost. “I would like that, but only if you feel comfortable with a decision so big. You don’t have to make it now. Not for me.” Neil replies. Andrew closes his eyes. “Tell me one final time.” Neil traces one of Andrew’s eyelids with a barely-there finger and takes a breath. “Yes. Eternally yes.” Andrew crushes his lips hard against Neil’s: a chemical reaction. The kiss is a languid drink sipped by a man who’d been thirsting for years. The kiss is a game changer and Neil feels it in every single one of his arteries. If such a gesture could be measured, it’d stretch on for eternity. Neil is so thankful when they come apart for air that he’s stunted speechless. Andrew’s expression, once an uprising, now lays its armor down and then, the barest, shortest of burning smiles. Neil thinks he’ll forget how to inflate his lungs. And sitting there, atop their little pocket dimension of a rooftop, with Neil’s face moon-bright and stained red with surprise, Andrew thinks this gentleness will become a bad habit.