Disclaimer: Written with love, not for money
Summary: Well, if I'd tell you, you wouldn't have to read it.... ;)
Still 4 days to Christmas
Kevin looks at Scotty, who looks back at Kevin. In the short silence their eyes convey a story that requires no words. Shock, hurt, confusion, care, love and seeking forgiveness. Kevin eventually breaks the silence with a shy and careful smile.
“You still love it, don’t you? When you look at someone, and they don’t look away?”
The memory of his words to Kevin, during their first date, puts a gentle smile on Scotty’s face too and he nods that Kevin is right about that.
“Can I come in?” Scotty asks. Kevin opens the door further to let Scotty in. He quickly closes the door. It’s gotten even colder outside, with night falling.
“I’m sorry, I tried to call you. I .. I know what I did was wrong… It was not necessary for you to come all the way here… I’m fine.. I just needed some space… I hope you’re not too angry with me?” Kevin stammers and he brings up his best ‘puppy dog’-face to make Scotty forgive him.
Scotty, who had walked in until halfway the room, now walks back to Kevin. Ridiculous as the thought is, Kevin wonders if Scotty will have a swing at him for being such an idiot. Now that he’s had some distance and perspective, he can see that he had done things wrong. And how he should have worked harder to get through to Scotty.
“I know you must be angry, but I just saw no other way to deal with what was going on in my head and …. Mhmph….” Scotty silences Kevin with a strong kiss on the lips.
“Kev, I love you… You should have…”
“I should have… I know…” Kevin lets his body lean against Scotty’s.
"You shouldn't have had to..." Scotty tries.
"I know... I just..." Kevin hesitates. "I'm sorry."
“I’m sorry too, I should have known that you needed me and I should have woken you up as you had asked me to. I was just so incredibly tired. And I just wanted to go to bed.”
Scotty caresses Kevin’s back and Kevin relaxes at the touch.
“I should have realized that you might have been too tired… My reaction was so childish…”
“No, you told me that you needed me and I just didn’t react as I should have….”
“And I knew that you had a lot on your mind. It’s nearly Christmas, you have a restaurant that is booked full and you want to offer everyone a wonderful evening….” Kevin lets his head rest against Scotty’s shoulder.
“Yes, but it shouldn’t have been at the expense of you.” Scotty kisses Kevin’s hair.
“It wasn’t.” Kevin shakes his head. For a moment they are quiet, just holding each other, enjoying how it feels to be so close.
“How are you?” Scotty now asks.
Kevin opens his mouth to give the usual ‘fine’-routine, but then he breathes out rather loudly and when he breathes in again, it sounds like a sob. Suddenly the tears that he’d been holding back, the anguish, the guilt... it all comes back to him. With Scotty holding him and not angry with him, it is as if all the barriers go down.
“I’m sorry…” Kevin cries. Scotty holds Kevin tightly and he lets him cry out his pain. He kisses Kevin’s hair and whispers that everything will be alright. Kevin wraps his arms around Scotty and pulls him even closer.
“You know that I love you, right?” Scotty asks softly.
Kevin nods against his shoulder.
“You and the kids are the most important persons in my life. And I’m here…”
“You shouldn’t have to be here…. I’m sorry…. You should be at Café 429... Taking care of all those people who come to have a great night and enjoy your cooking…” Kevin sobs.
“Right now, my patrons are in good hands. The kids are safe and well-fed by your mother. Right now, my only concern, and my biggest concern is you… and the only person who will get the benefit of my delicious cooking tonight is you.”
“I only have green beans and some chicken. I wanted to do some shopping tomorrow…”
“I brought a few things along.” Scotty nods with a knowing smile. “Where’s the kitchen?”
“Over there… I’ll show you…”
“Help me get everything inside?”
“Yes. Okay… And Scotty? I’m so sorry.” Kevin says again.
There’s so much pain and regret in his eyes that Scotty caresses Kevin’s face with a gentle smile on his face. Kevin is feeling more guilty for making Scotty leave the restaurant, when all he had needed was just a few of minutes of Scotty’s time and a warm hug.
“I know. Me too. I screwed up. I should have realized that something was wrong. You needed me…. So, first, can we get something to eat, because I’m starving and then we’ll see what we’ll do… Don’t worry. My first place is with you and not the with the restaurant. Got that?” He asks and Kevin nods.
Kevin hums in appreciation as Scotty’s food melts on his tongue.
“I swear. I don’t know how you do it, but you’re such an amazing cook that you could make a 5 star dish out of a wooden chair….” He moans again and Scotty laughs out loud.
“That's quite the exaggeration. But thanks.”
From the other side of the table he takes Kevin’s hand and their fingers entwine for a few seconds.
“I’ve missed this. Us.” Scotty then says. “It’s like time stands still here. Like nothing else matters anymore. Not the restaurant, or your work, or the kids, or any other worry.”
“I agree. Wait until you’re in bed tonight. It’s so quiet here too.” Kevin agrees.
“I can’t wait to get some sleep. I’m exhausted. I never knew travelling could be so tiring.”
“I was dead to the world last night as well.”
“Kev, I want to know what happened exactly, but … can we talk tomorrow about the court-case and the boy and the reasons you ran away?… I feel like if I close my eyes for more than 5 seconds, I’m asleep.”
“Of course.” Kevin nods, glad that he doesn’t have to bring up the story just yet.
Though that night the temperature drops to the lowest point this year, Kevin and Scotty don’t really notice. The fire still emits a bit of warmth and they’ve kept the door between the bedroom and living-room open, and under the two layers of blankets, the bed is warm and comfortable.
Bodies entwined, arms around each other, Kevin and Scotty had quickly found their sleep. Scotty, tired from the travelling and from the change of place. Kevin, from the relaxing day and from Scotty’s forgiveness that allows him to clear so many negative thoughts from his head.
3 days to Christmas
Scotty stretches out, but immediately sticks his arms back under the covers. It’s very cold in the room. He turns over, but finds the place next to him in bed empty.
“Just a second!!!”
Kevin enters the bedroom, carrying a tray with bread and coffee. He places it at the foot of the bed.
“I’ve already made a fire in the fireplace. It should be warm here soon too. Don’t worry. Meanwhile you can warm your hands on this.” He hands Scotty a mug with hot coffee.
“Nice.” Scotty shivers as the cold tries to penetrate his clothes. Kevin, who’s already wearing a sweater, takes another blanket to put around Scotty’s shoulders. Scotty gives Kevin a grateful smile and pulls the blanket closer around him. “It’s really cold in here.”
“Yes. Temperature is near to freezing outside, I think.”
“But no snowfall?”
“No. Just a lot of ice. I suggest that after breakfast we go into the village and get some more food… You never know.”
“Good idea…. Wouldn’t mind having a look around this place though.”
“The cabin is great and so is the land around it. From a bit further up the hill, you have a beautiful view on this place. It’s just breathtaking. And not just because the wind up there is ice-cold.” Kevin grins.
“I’d love to go up there and see for myself.”
“Then we’ll go there once we’re back from getting groceries.” Kevin decides. Scotty nods that he agrees.
“Sounds like a good idea. These sandwiches are really delicious. You’ve made a breakfast made in heaven.” Scotty smiles, making Kevin a bit shy with the compliment.
A few hours later, Kevin and Scotty climb up the hill to have a look at the house from up there. With lunch in their bellies they are in a good mood. They move slowly due to the fact that they’re both out of breath easily.
“We should get back to the gym more often…” Scotty stops to catch his breath.
“Tell me about it.” Kevin is less tired. He had already climbed up once before. Still, he doesn’t mind the short stop. “It’s just a bit further up there. There’s a ridge and you can see the house from there.” He encourages. Scotty nods and follows Kevin further up the mountain.
The last few meters are steep and Kevin gets there faster than Scotty, who keeps slipping away on the iced snow. Kevin reaches out to Scotty to help him up. Scotty gives him a grateful smile. Out of breath but satisfied Scotty looks around. It’s definitely worth the heavy climb.
The view is magnificent. Though the first thing they see is the cabin, once they look past it, they can see the valley further below. The snow-covered mountains around the valley create a scene from a Christmas-postcard.
“It’s gorgeous.” Scotty sighs
“I know. It’s very pretty.” Kevin agrees, breathing in the fresh air and liking the cold breeze on his face. There’s a silence between them, until Scotty looks at Kevin.
“We need to talk.” He says softly. And Kevin takes a deep breath and then he breathes out. He nods. Yes. It’s time to talk.
END OF CHAPTER FIVE