John X Kaiden = #41
Kaidan’s been looking at Shepard for years. He’s all muscle, lean and strong even without his biotics. A terrifying force of nature in his own right, which is likely why he was chosen for the N7 program in the first place.
But it’s still surprising that there’s a softness underneath it all, that Shepard bruises and bleeds like every other human. Kaidan always knew—had known from the start that Shepard wasn’t the invincible machine everyone else thought he was—but there’s something different about knowing that and feeling it under your own hands.
“See anything you like?” Shepard asks from across the room, as he’s pulling off a pair of jeans and stretching out his bad leg. Kaidan’s still lying in bed, propped on an elbow, watching and waiting for Shepard to join him.
Kaidan doesn’t answer, just reaches out to Shepard as he steps closer to the bed, catching him around the hips and running his thumbs over the dips and curves of his muscles. Shepard chuckles as he does it, and Kaidan’s heart swells with a kind of happiness he hasn’t known in years.
Kaidan’s still trying to find the words when Shepard leans down and kisses him. No rush, no pressure. When he pulls away, he’s smiling, drawing his fingers through Kaidan’s hair. “I love it when you do that,” he says, letting his eyes fall back closed, and wrapping an arm around Shepard’s waist so they can fall into bed.
“Just that?” Shepard asks with a roll of his hips against Kaidan’s. “I’m a man of many talents, you know.”
Kaidan chuckles, rolling so Shepard’s positioned atop him. “Definitely one of your finer points.”
“Yeah?” Shepard rests the weight of his upper body on an arm, using one of his legs to kick open Kaidan’s. “What are the others?”
Normally, Kaidan would laugh it off, insist Shepard’s begging for a compliment—but he’s been on extended shore leave for so long, Kaidan knows he’s struggling finding worth outside of the Alliance. “Your compassion,” he says, and lifts his head to press another kiss to Shepard’s lips. “Determination…”
“Reading off my resume?”
“The way you make me feel,” Kaidan adds. “Not sure there are words for how much I love you, Shepard.”
There’s a simplicity in the statement, sure, but it holds more weight for either of them than Kaidan thought it could. Shepard drops his gaze, an embarrassed smile playing at his lips, and when he drops his weight to rest on Kaidan, Kaidan feels the whispered ‘I love you, too’ against the skin of his neck.