14. things you said after you kissed me
Hawke always talked a lot. Anders knew he wasn’t exactly reserved himself, but next to the way Hawke could fill up a room with chatter, he felt like it at times. Hawke always seemed to have some kind of observation, ranging from the pithy to the banal to the utterly absurd, but they were all, well, charming, at least in Anders’ well and truly besotted opinion (look, he could admit it, but it was). So it shouldn’t have surprised him when after each kiss, Hawke would pull back, warmth in his eyes, and slide his hands to cup Anders’ face or around to the back of his neck or knock their foreheads together and say … something. ”I never thought I’d feel this way about anyone,” had taken Anders’ breath away, even though Hawke had followed it with a crooked, wryly self-deprecating smile. Anders had never thought anyone would say anything like that about him. No one ever would have, not in the Circle. He’d just been left staring, hardly able to breathe, heart pounding in his throat and chest warm all through.
Hawke had put his hands on his waist, warm and broad, smiled and moved in, and then, belatedly, Anders was grabbing his wrists, scrambling back, and his mouth was moving again. ”I thought with Justice, this part of me was over,” he had babbled, how Hawke would be hated for being with him, hunted—but he hadn’t been able to keep himself away, in the end. And Hawke had kissed him again, and again, so many times since then. And sometimes, sometimes he was laughing self-consciously, his eyes crinkling up, holding Anders’ hand to his face, and saying, “Don’t ever leave,” eyes flicking down so that his long eyelashes hid them from view, and sometimes he was laughing and curling his fingers through Anders’ hair, telling him he should wear it down, or that he tasted like a health potion, or teasing him about having a noble Tevinter nose. There was always something, with Hawke.
Once, on Sundermount, Hawke turned toward him and took his wrist, pulled him in close, heedless of the fine, drizzling mist in the air, and pushed Anders’ hair back from his face even as he was asking what it was he wanted, and leaned in with a soft smile to press a kiss to his lips. It was warm, gentle, tender, and he leaned in just enough to steal Anders’ breath before pulling back. Anders found himself grabbing his shoulders and pulling him back, pressing closer, and Hawke slid one hand around the back of his skull, into his hair, and kissed him more soundly, breaking away laughing, grinning at him.
"What was that for?" Anders asked, starting to laugh himself, somehow, and Hawke smiled.
"You just looked like you needed a kiss," he said. "Besides, rain is a good look on you, very fetching."
"It makes me look like a drowned cat," Anders said with a frown. "It’s a good look on you.”
"Most things are," Hawke said, and winked with a laugh when Anders punched him in the shoulder.
Anders thought about that, randomly, of all things, when Hawke, travel-stained and weary, came striding through the trees toward him, breaking into a run even as Anders looked up and saw him. Anders was frozen at first, barely able to breathe—he had half-convinced himself that Hawke was never coming back, had spent the last night teary-eyed into his pillow with fears that Hawke would do something reckless while he was with the Inquisition, would die, that Anders would lose him and never know, his throat aching with fear, unable to sleep for the song in his dreams. His heart was pounding in his throat, just like their first kiss all over again, so many years ago now, and then he was dropping the bucket of water he held on the ground, and Hawke’s arms were around him, his thumb catching on Anders’ cheek and smearing through the wet there.
"It’s raining," Anders said, choking on the tears, smiling so widely he thought his face might burst.
"Yeah, you look like a drowned cat," Hawke said, and kissed him. It seared every other thought out of Anders’ head, and all he could do was surge up into it, his hands naturally gripping at Hawke’s collar, against his neck, sliding back into his unruly hair. They kissed until Anders no longer remembered how to breathe, like all he needed was Hawke’s mouth, his breath, the touch of him, the sturdy solidity of his body against Anders’. Finally Hawke pulled away, tracing Anders’ face with his hands, bringing them close together, tilting their foreheads together. "Love," he said, gasped, and said nothing else, just gripped at the back of Anders’ neck and swallowed, panted for air, closing his eyes and not saying anything at all, his chest heaving.
"You’re back," Anders said, and his own voice was hoarse and rough and broken and he could hardly breathe, could hardly think. Hawke was back, and the joy bubbling up in him felt like its own kind of healing magic.
"I’m back," Hawke murmured, and opened his eyes and smiled, covering Anders’ hand at his jaw with his own. "I’m back, love. Kiss me again."
So Anders did. Hawke’s arms went around him and pulled him even closer, and Anders forgot all about the rain.