32. “Your eyes are red… Were you crying?” Robron please :)
32. Your eyes are red… Were you crying? (spoiler alert: he wasn’t. and this is all the fault of @capseycartwright you can’t go around putting stuff like that in my head lorna!)
Aaron doesn’t do much of the cooking. Not because he’s lazy or anything, it’s just. Well, Aaron’s idea of a hearty meal is four slices of toast and Robert’s actually good at it so. Aaron does other stuff, alright? You’ve never seen Robert clean the bathroom have you? Didn’t think so.
The point is, it’s not that he can’t cook. So there’s really no reason for Robert to look so bloody surprised when he gets home to find Aaron most of the way through Vic’s cottage pie recipe. It’s a Sunday, he’s been home alone all afternoon. It’s not that weird.
“Well this is a surprise,” Robert says. Aaron can hear him taking his coat off, crash of keys into the fruit bowl on the counter that’s never seen any fruit, boots thumping against the wall. Aaron’ll have to tidy those away later, he just knows it.
He feels Robert step up behind him at the cooker, hands smoothing over his shoulders, soft kiss to the back of his neck. Aaron stirs the stew, sets his wooden spoon back down in the puddle of gravy it’s left on the counter. He’s got a while before he needs to turn the potatoes off.
“Cottage pie?” Robert asks, just from the smell apparently.
Aaron nods, distracted as Robert levers himself up on to the counter. He’s wearing the jumper Liv bought him last Christmas, soft and grey, sleeves shoved up to his elbows and Aaron loses himself for a minute watching the bunch and release of the muscles in Robert’s forearms. Has to check the food again before Robert notices or he’ll never hear the end of it.
“Smells good,” Robert says, which makes Aaron feel inexplicably shy. He’s given up trying to understand his body’s reactions to Robert by now.
Before he can say anything else Robert’s long legs are reaching out, catching . Aaron around the waist. He stumbles into the vee of Robert’s thighs, can’t help but laugh.
Robert ruffles a hand through Aaron’s hair, squeezes him in tighter with his knees. “Thanks for this,” he says. “I was dreading having to sort something for tea after the day I’ve had.”
Aaron shrugs, dropping his hands to Robert’s thighs, rubbing a little because he can’t help himself. “Well, I’ve got my uses.”
Robert’s smile could power the sun. “You really do.”
He’s got that look in his eye, Aaron thinks, that look like Aaron’s about to get good and kissed and he better hold on tight. It makes him shiver. He can feel himself wavering closer before Robert inclines his head sharply, face worried.
“Your eyes are red,” he says. “Have you been crying? What’s wrong?”
Aaron shakes his head and the smile that spreads across his face is completely outside of his control. “I’ve been chopping onions, idiot. What have I got to cry about? I’ve been sat on my arse all day.”
Robert huffs a laugh. “Sorry, it’s just-”
Aaron hurries a nod. “I know.” Robert doesn’t like to take any chances anymore, neither of them do.
They stand for a moment, just nodding at each other. It feels utterly, ridiculously romantic to Aaron. To be stood in their kitchen, the kitchen Robert built for him, the smell of Sunday food in the air, April shower tapping at the fogged up windows. It feels like home.
Aaron can’t really get any closer but he tries his best, hands sliding around Robert’s waist in a hug. He has to lean up further than usual to get at Robert’s mouth but that’s okay. It makes the sensation of Robert kissing down into him that little bit sharper, Robert’s hands on his face, fingers soft against his jaw.
It’s the sort of kiss they don’t often have time for. Starts slow and gentle, slick slide of tongues. Robert tastes like salt and the inside of Aaron’s own mouth, familiar and exhilarating like it’s always been.
Robert’s thumbs are pressed to the pressure points at the hinges Aaron’s jaw, fingers rubbing up into his hair. It makes Aaron want to writhe, push into the touch like a cat until Robert pets him. He settles for arching his neck a little, muffles the noise he makes on Robert’s tongue.
He loves it when it’s like this, kisses long and sloppy, mouths moving in a rhythm they perfected a long time ago. Aaron’s lips feel used already, he knows Robert’s will be red all through tea and he can’t wait to see it.
It slows up a little, has to, windows down to soft brushes of lips, shared breath, Robert’s tongue flickering over Aaron’s bottom lip until Aaron can’t stand it anymore. His hands find Robert’s hips with a groan, tug so Robert slides forward on the counter and now they really can’t get any closer.
He can feel Robert, hard against his belly, a matching ache to the one Aaron is trying not to subtly grind against the cutlery draw. It doesn’t feel urgent though, more like a promise.
Robert eases back eventually, when his stomach grumbles loudly enough to have Aaron laughing into his mouth.
His palms cup Aaron’s jaw, eyes bright. “You want to be careful,” he says, nudging their noses together. “I could get used to this sort of treatment.”
Aaron gives him another kiss, feels warm and soft behind his ribs. Robert always does this to him. “Maybe you should,” he tells him. It’s easier to be soppy when Robert’s too close to see clearly.
Robert winds his arms around Aaron’s neck and Aaron lets him because he’s not an idiot. Hugs from Robert are the best kind of hugs. He hides his warm face in Robert’s shoulder, breathes him in.
He really needs to finish tea now, can probably he can talk Robert into sorting the potatoes if he plays his cards right. But he’s just going to hug his husband for a bit longer first, it’s what Sundays were made for, after all.
Issue edited by Walter Robinson and Edith deAk. Statements about artists’ books by Kathy Acker, John Baldessari, Luciano Bartonlini, Roberta Allen, Ulises Carrion, Daniel Buren, Robert Delford, Brown, Robert Cumming, Ted Castle, Agnes Denes, Peter Downsbrough, Mary Fish, Jon Gibson, Peter Grass, George Griffin, Judith A. Hoffberg, Douglas Huebler, Alan Kaprow, Richard Kostelanetz, Sharon Kulik, Robert Leverant, Sol LeWitt, Lucy Lippard, Christof Kohlhofer, Jane Logemann, Paul McMahon, Robert Morgan, Mauritio Nannuci, Richard Nonas, Adrian Piper, Lucian Pozzi, Marcia Resnick, The Roseprint Detective Club, Carolee Schneemann, John Shaw, Bob Smith, Pat Steir, Ellen Sragow, Ted Stamm, Peter Stansbury, Richard Tuttle, Fred Truck, Lawrence Weiner, Robert Winters, Rachel Youdelman