New York

Adam and Kris are real people but this is a work of fiction.

On the way to New York, Adam gets this text: sore this morning, jerk. Id be mad if u werent such a hot fuck. Ty.

It's from Drake and he'd be stoked except he hasn't seen Drake in, like, two weeks. So. It's not any kind of big drama or whatever. They aren't exclusive; in fact, they aren't supposed to be anything, just friends with benefits. But Adam has this big dumb heart that's never as cool with these kinds of situations as it's supposed to be. And he knows exactly what Drake must have been smiling like when he sent that text and it's kind of killing him that the smile wasn't for him.

About five minutes later, Drake calls him, sounding totally ashamed of himself, and apologizes for being a classless, technologically stunted loser who can't even send a text to the right contact, and Adam laughs as convincingly as he can and says it's fine, and they talk about nothing for a while, and it's uncomfortable and fucked up, and then Adam pretends they're at the hotel and ends the call.

For a few minutes he sits at the table of the bus's kitchenette with his chin propped on his arm, poking his phone around in a glum circle with one finger. Then Kris wanders out in his sweatpants and an enormous t-shirt, hair sticking up all over his head, and grabs a bottled frappuccino out of the fridge. He opens it and takes a long sip and then scratches his belly and yawns and then finally sees Adam at the table. "Oh, hey," he says.

Adam spins his phone again. He makes a noise that's vaguely hey-like, except without opening his mouth.

Kris screws the cap back onto his bottle and slides onto the bench next to Adam, bumps their shoulders together. "What's wrong?"

Adam sighs and lets his head fall sideways so he can look at Kris, resting his temple on his arm instead. "Boys are dumb," he says.

Kris narrows his eyes, presses his lips together grimly. He nods a couple of times. "Do I have to mess somebody up?"

Adam smiles. Kris lifts his eyebrows. "Are you...hey. Is that doubt in your eyes? Are you doubting me right now? Because I want you to know, I am straight gangsta when I have to be." He plucks at the front of his t-shirt, aggro.

Adam feels his smile turn into a grin. "Represent," he says, softly.

Kris nods again. "Damn straight." He sets his half-empty frappuccino bottle on the table and nudges it toward the centre, folds his own arms like Adam's and rests his head on them. They look at each other in silence for a few seconds.

"I suck at the friends-with-benefits thing," Adam says finally. He rolls his eyes at himself. "Too much of a romantic."

Kris wrinkles his nose, sympathetically.

"I mean, it was my idea, right? So it's totally illogical to be freaked that he's actually sleeping with other people. But I kind of really wanted him to--" He frowns, waves a hand. "Not take me up on it, I guess."

Kris presses his lips together. Adam swallows hard and closes his eyes. Next to him, Kris shifts and puts a hand on Adam's back and Adam is about to sit up and get hugged when the bus stutters to an air-braked halt at the hotel.

So instead of hugging, there are several minutes of chaos while everybody tumbles out of their bunks and passes bags to each other and gets their room assignments sorted out and it intensely sucks, even though Adam's usually pretty glad to get to the big comfy bed part of the daily program. But Kris grabs Adam's spare keycard when the lady at the front desk hands it to him and then shows up about half an hour after that, toeing his sneakers off in the dark by the door and then kneeing his way across Adam's bed until he's propped over Adam himself, braced on one arm so he can look down into Adam's face. "Hey," Adam says.

Kris smiles. "Hey. I owe you a hug."

Adam spreads his arms and Kris lowers himself into them, tucking his head under Adam's chin. He smells like hotel shampoo; his hair's still a little damp. Adam closes his eyes and rests his cheek against the soft spikes until he can feel the warmth of Kris's scalp instead of the coolness of his damp hair, Kris's t-shirt bunched up under each of his palms.

"I suck at saying the right things," Kris says, muffled in Adam's hoodie. "In these kinds of situations."

Adam huffs a laugh. "You don't have to say anything. This is perfect." He gives Kris a grateful squeeze and Kris squeezes back, and then Adam relaxes his grip a little. But. Kris doesn't get up. Instead, he sighs and sniffs and says, "Can I just stay here, maybe?" all wistful and sleepy and sweet and even though this is suddenly edging toward a whole different kind of messed up, Adam doesn't have the heart to tell him no.

"Well," he says. "I guess." He slides a hand up to cup the back of Kris's head, scritching a little with his fingers.

Kris wriggles, settling in, and then wriggles again, his compact body pressing into Adam's pretty much the whole way down and it's kind of torture, because yes, Drake, but on the other hand Kris, and Adam sucks in a breath and holds it for a few seconds before he slowly lets it go. But then Kris squirms again, and slides one thigh up over Adam's and it turns out that Adam does, in fact, have a line.

"Dude," he says. "I don't want to freak you out but jesus christ, you have to stop moving. You're kind of...driving me crazy."

Kris goes really still. "Oh," he says. His leg twitches, then stops, tense and uncertain on top of Adam's. "Shit. Sorry."

Adam sighs. He pats Kris's back a couple of times, leaving his grip loose and casual in case Kris wants to panic and get up or something, but Kris doesn't, of course, because Kris is perfect in every way. Instead, he puts his hand on Adam's chest, slow and careful, stretching his fingers out straight. Then he makes a fist again, just as slow and careful, bunching up a little of Adam's hoodie as he goes. Then he takes a breath. "I would, you know," he says, softly.

Adam rests his hand on Kris's back. He's sleepy now, but mostly just because he's so desperately tired. "Would what?" he says.

Kris swallows. "Be into it. With you. Hooking up with you. I mean, if I wasn't already married."

Adam's eyes fly all the way open. He looks up at the ceiling, the far away ceiling in this not-cheap hotel room that is bigger than his studio apartment back home, and he thinks about how his life is totally surreal and amazing and different and yet also totally the same. He puts the hand that isn't on Kris's back over his eyes and then he laughs out loud for a while.

Kris screws his whole face up in a grimace, then buries it in Adam's chest. "I'm sorry," he says. "Shit. That was the wrong thing to say."

"Yeah," Adam says. "Yep. So not helpful." He wraps both arms around Kris again, though, squeezing him close, and Kris holds him back just as hard. A few seconds pass. Kris takes another breath and doesn't use it, holding himself still in Adam's arms.

Adam winces in advance. "What?" he says.

Kris lifts his head so he can look Adam in the face. "Do you think it would help, maybe, get it out of our systems if we kissed one time?"

All the breath leaves Adam's lungs at once. "No?" he says.

Kris nods, quickly, lowering his eyes to Adam's mouth, to his chin. "Yeah, you're right," he says. "That was dumb." And there are dark smudges under each of his eyes and this sweet worried line between his eyebrows and Adam thinks wow, this is really fucking stupid as his hand finds the side of Kris's face, his thumb stroking lightly over Kris's lips before he presses his own mouth there, warm and dry and then cool and wet when Kris takes a sharp breath in and opens his mouth a little. Adam licks at Kris's bottom lip, tentative and careful and Kris moans into Adam's mouth, his fingers tightening in the cotton hoodie over Adam's chest. Adam pushes his hand up into Kris's hair and pulls him down a little, pulls him closer, kisses him slow and sweet, the other hand sliding all the way up Kris's back and then down again to the sliver of bare skin at his waist. Kris shivers hard when Adam's fingers touch him there and Adam says, "fuck fuck fuck," and rolls away from him, rolls right off the edge of the bed and onto his feet.

Kris flops onto his back, breathing hard, and puts both hands over his face.

"That's. Not good," Adam says. "We should not have done that."

Kris breathes out. "Nope."

"I mean, this is kind of becoming a ridiculous infidelity spiral. Drake sleeps around so I help you sleep around? Where's the logic in that?"

"No logic," says Kris, from underneath his hands. "Bad logic. Bad or missing logic."

Adam nods a few times. "Exactly." There's silence for a little while. "That was seriously hot, though," Adam says finally, into it.

Kris takes his hands away from his face. "Yeah," he says earnestly. "It really, really was." They look at each other and the look kind of stretches and then all of a sudden, Adam's finding it hard to breathe. He closes his eyes. "Kris, man, I love you, but you really really can't be in my room right now."

Kris swallows. "Yeah," he says. He scrubs his hands over his face again and then he rolls off the bed on the other side and pads barefoot out the door.

[AUTHORIALLY INTRUSIVE EPILOGUE: the donor asked for a story about what might have happened in New York and so I'm leaving this where it is. But in my head, at least, Kris later confesses all of this to Katy, who is pissed, but mostly just because he didn't talk to her before the kissing happened, because it turns out she a) has a long involvement with slash fandom and once wrote an epic Smallville AU in which Clark and Lex were pilots together in the first World War, and so b) thinks the idea of her husband with another guy is smoking hot and also c) once wrote a whole paper for her Gender Studies class about the continued relevance of The Ethical Slut in post-Bush America.

"You couldn't have just talked to me about this?" she asks Kris. "I bet you didn't even read that book when I lent it to you. Dumbass." And he hadn't, as it happens, so she makes him buy a new copy and read it for real and by the time the tour gets to Manchester, the three of them have negotiated a pretty mutually satisfactory arrangement in which everyone's needs are met and nobody feels left out.

And those public tweets to Drake? Totally a diversionary tactic on Adam's part, because middle America might be ready for a gay pop star but they aren't quite ready for a polyamorous one and he is pretty fucking determined to get himself that house.