Stripes of peach-gold across his bedroom ceiling, muted brightness turning the air hazy soft, floating. Spectral colours tilt and fade across the cream walls as he lies still, counting breaths. His heart feels heavy, each beat thudding and there in a way he’s never noticed before. The drumline of his pulse rushes through his ears and the tremble of it in his neck is jarring.
Then a hand strokes across his side, calloused and coarse but gentler than anything Clint’s ever known. And there are people, even now, even still, who will say that this is wrong - that he is flawed and something broken. But Clint, he knows broken. He’s spent his whole life in jagged pieces and flinty shards. Now, he doesn’t feel like the dark confessional booth, like the sharp edges of a rosary, like a sin.
He feels like an altar to be worshipped at.
And Phil leans across, soft eyes and lips curled at the edges, and Clint can’t think of anything more right.
When Phil’s lips press against his, he stops worrying about his pulse.
When Clint kisses back, he feels the whole world inside his chest, and thinks he can get used to the weight of having Phil locked away inside his heart.
Things with Phil have gotten serious. Like, double playdate with the kids every weekend serious. Having Kate watch Leo and Skye on Friday nights so they can have grown-up sleepovers serious. Carpooling the kids to school every morning so they have a chance to see one another before work since they don’t get to wake up to each other serious.
They’d both agreed, going into this, that they needed to be totally up front with Leo and Skye about the dating thing because they were both used to spending the majority of their non-work time catering to the wishes of five-year-olds.
From what Phil had told him, Skye had been inordinately excited that her daddy had a boyfriend. She always grinned happily when greeting Clint, the gap from her first lost tooth adding all kinds of adorableness to her smile. She’d even taken to hugging Clint goodbye recently, so as far as Clint knew, things were all good on that front.
Granted, he’d also thought things were totally square with Leo, but he’s currently plopped in Clint’s lap, keeping Clint from getting them ready for dinner at Phil’s place. Leo’s doing that horribly heartbreaking thing where he holds in his tears, only a few slipping free every now and then as he snuffles and gnaws on his lip. And apparently it’s Clint’s relationship with Phil that’s got his favorite little guy upset.
'the outfits were real pretty inappropriate’ - i’m getting visions of some emma frost level shit. thank god adult phil has toned it down a bit??
LMAO, yeah, like all those Hawkeye Initiative outfits, but not satire, completely in earnest. His Captain America redesign was like a red, white, and blue triangle to cover the essential bits, and maybe star pasties for the nipples.
(BB!Phil’s logic was that the shield would protect everything else so more clothes were totally not needed).