home is wherever i’m with you
baz has a thing for simon’s wings, especially when he’s having a bad day
I can tell Baz’s had a bad day the moment he enters the flat, slamming the door behind him and muttering about daft professors and fucking study groups and–for some reason–his father. Baz has bad days and then he has Bad Days, and I can tell today is the latter. His face is pinched, his frown is deep, and I’m not shocked when he doesn’t stop to kiss me on his way in.
Baz doesn’t live with Penny and me, but he’s over here often enough that it feels like it sometimes. He’s even got his own key and drawer. His shampoo is next to mine in the shower. It’s not much different than when we were roommates at Watford, except it feels more domestic now, means something different. There we cohabitated because we had to, now we do it because we want to. It’s scary sometimes how okay I am with that.
Baz claims it’s just because Fiona is gone so much and he can’t be bothered to buy food, but I know better.
I also know better than to push him to admit things.
It took us a while to get to this point, if I’m honest. We still get into it, even now that we’re together. Some things never really change. He’s overdramatic, Baz is. And stubborn. And I suppose I can be a bit stubborn at times too, which isn’t very helpful when you’re having a row and neither side will back down.
But I’m always careful around him when he gets like this and I always know what he needs.
The first time it happened, we’d been on the couch watching Masterchef reruns. I’d been about to get up to get a snack because the show always makes me hungry, when I felt Baz’s fingers brushing my right wing. My first instinct was to pull it back until I noticed his expression. He looked peaceful as he stroked it and I found I didn’t mind the sensation all that much. Or having to give up my snack.
Actually, that’s a lie. I pushed him away about 10 minutes later and got some crisps from the kitchen. He looked ready to throttle me until I handed him his own bag (salt & vinegar) and we resumed our earlier position.
It’s turned into a routine. Most days it’s just idle touches here and there, but on bad days, especially Bad Days, Baz likes to snuggle under them like a child. I don’t mind. I spent so long making him miserable, I’d do most anything to make him happy.
Fucking Snow is waiting by the door when I get home, looking like a kicked puppy when I shove my way past him to the bathroom. I strip down once I’m there and turn on the shower, hotter than it needs to be. I need to wash this day off of my skin, scald myself until it’s completely gone and I can forget about every little thing that went wrong.
I know he won’t try to talk to me about it. It’s one of the (many) things I love about Simon. He understands that sometimes it’s okay to just… not talk.
I can hear him bustling around the flat even through the bathroom door. He’s not exactly quiet, especially when he’s always bumping things with his wings or tripping over that damn tail.
I step under the spray and let the water run down my back. The slight burn feels good. Therapeutic. Grabbing my shampoo from the shelf where I’d left it the last time I was here, I start to wash up.
Occasionally I think I should stop pretending and just move in properly, but we really do need space from each other sometimes. Still, I’ve left so much over here. Like clothes. And shampoo. My shampoo that Simon used once, when his ran out, and I hated it. He smelled… wrong. Which is about a thousand times worse when you’ve got a vampiric supernose.
I finish up in the shower and put on a pair of Simon’s trackies. I briefly consider nicking a t-shirt as well, but the holes on the back always feel weird, like a draft right on your shoulder blades.
When I enter the lounge Simon’s waiting with a cup of tea and his wing open at his side. He’s put in the dvd for the first season of Downton Abbey, a major acquiescence on his part (although he does occasionally get into the storylines).
I sit next to him and lean into his side. He rests his wing on my shoulder, effectively wrapping me up, and I exhale and reach for the cup. He’s made it just the way I like it, the way only he knows: with lots of sugar and light on the milk. The exact opposite of him. His own pale brown cup is sitting half-drunk on the coffee table, probably already cold. Simon has a habit of doing that.
“I like this.” I say and take a sip. It’s perfect.
“I know,” he replies, “you don’t exactly keep it a secret.”
It’s true. I’m a bit obsessed with Simon’s wings. Sue me. I’m always finding excuses to touch them, especially on days like this when nothing seems to be going quite right and all I want to do is curl up on the couch and hide from the world.
Once I’ve finished my tea, we rearrange ourselves on the couch so I’m almost in Simon’s lap and both of his wings are surrounding me. We lay like that until the first episode fades into the second and I realize that Simon’s fallen asleep behind me. I feel his warm breath against the back of my neck as he begins to snore softly. It’s comforting, this routine.
I suppose it’s not quite normal–normal, not Normal–to enjoy being cocooned by a pair of wings belonging to your boyfriend, but then again, nothing about our life is.
And that’s perfectly fine by me.