I reached out and put my hand on his waist to steady myself. He shivered.
“You’re cold. Damned heater doesn’t work past midnight.” My voice felt thick and clumsy in my mouth. “You want me to get in there with you? Sleep beside you.”
I felt him tense up. “What is this, suicide watch? The nightmares are over now.”
“No, not that, of course not. I…it makes operational sense, doesn’t it?”
He was smiling, I could see; his teeth were white and sharp in the dim light. “You mean to conserve heat – to protect team members?”
He snorted. “This isn’t the Antarctic, Riley. And we’re no longer on watch. We’re off duty, remember?”
I nodded. “Well, that’s true, too.” I watched the light play on his face, the slow blink of his eyelids. “So maybe I have another, selfish reason.”
He sucked in his breath. I knew I was taking a risk – but reaching out for something, too. I didn’t know if I could keep things hidden for much longer. I kept staring at him, hoping he wouldn’t look away – wishing he felt the same. He’d never touched me after the kiss that evening on the beach. Not that way, anyway. Admittedly, there hadn’t been much of a chance for time alone together, and he’d been the same as usual toward me, there’d been no extra tension. But there’d been no positive mention of it, either.
I sighed. “Adam, okay, forget it…”
Then he nodded to me, just the once. I bit back my words – I didn’t need any more.
I scrambled to my feet and went to fetch another blanket from my own bunk. When I came back in, he’d scooted over to the far side of his bed and left the sheet turned back for me. I did some wriggling as I slid in beside him. Half of me was trying not to crowd him, the other half was desperate to be close. Another part of me that blew the hundred per cent equation was my cock, hot and swelling by now, even though I was trying – probably unsuccessfully – to keep it closeted in my boxers in case he thought I was coming on to him in all the wrong ways. Or the right ones. Whatever.
Adam lay back down again, arms behind his head, the muscles of his torso shaded in the dark room like the sand dunes around the beach. The sheet lay pooled around his waist, hugging the shape of his hips and thighs. It wasn’t as cold in the room any more, or so it seemed to me: I dropped the extra blanket on to the floor and stretched out beside him. The thin mattress creaked from our combined weight and Adam let out a small, soft breath. I propped myself up on my arm and turned to face him. I could breathe in his smell from there; hear the slightest whisper. The sliver of moonlight missed most of our faces and lit up the curved edges of our bodies, making parts of us look like sinister shadows from a black and white movie. My cock shifted impatiently at my groin, tugging at the fabric of my boxers. I fiddled aimlessly at the hem of my tee shirt.
It didn’t sound like a question, but I knew it was. “Only what you want, Adam. I’d never ask anything more.” And I’d settle for less, if I had to.
He relaxed and nodded. He was smiling again. His voice echoed softly in the still air. “On the beach that time… you remember?”
I smiled at how ridiculous that question was, and then I reached for him.