Pairing, Rating: John/Cam, NC17
Summary: The most important thing is to come home.
Warning: vague possible-spoilers for S1 of SGU. Also, curtainfic. (version with photographs @ Archive of Our Own.)
Hey, John calls when he gets home, and Cam hollers hey back so that John knows where he is and can make his way to him or not, depending on the mood he's in. Cam figured out even before John moved in that he doesn't know how John thinks. John's brain's a weird soup of simple and cryptic, and Cam's given up being baffled and has settled for more of a whatever attitude. But he's seen the way John looks at him from the corners of his eyes when UNC's playing, and he thinks the confusion's mutual.
It takes John two minutes to make his way from the kitchen door, carefully kicking mud off his boots on the back steps before coming in, down the back hall to the bedroom, mainly because he grabs himself a beer on the way.
Want one, he asks, and Cam says nah. John leans in the doorway, ankles crossed, and doesn't say anything as he watches Cam, standing sock-footed on the desk, fight with the goddamned hooks on the curtains.
Hell, Cam says, one evil pointed metal spike sliding through the material and into his thumb. He sucks the blood off, and then looks around at John. You laughing at me?
John shakes his head, and then lets one side of his mouth twist up. You're doing it wrong.
Hand over the beer, then, and you do it, Cam says, jumping down and letting the curtains sag in a sorry pool of fabric all over the desktop.
He collects a kiss from John first, because John's been offworld for a week and Cam feels like he needs to reconnect. John smells like the Mountain, disinfectant soap and filtered air. He should smell like motor oil and dirt and the aftershave Cam gave him his birthday last; better yet, he should smell like Cam, like home.
But John's mouth is just the way it should be, always holding back at first, just a brush of lips and a hint of breath before some internal restraint loosens. When John's mouth finally opens, his head falls even more to the side and his fingers slide into the short hair at the back of Cam's head. Cam catches John's bottom lip between his teeth and licks; and there, right on cue, John's eyes fall shut and he's shifting restless on his feet.
Cam loves being able to get inside John's walls like this. He guesses maybe only two or three people alive are allowed past John's defenses, and he's the only one of them who gets to roll around with John naked.
That thought makes his dick come to attention, making it his turn to squirm. John laughs against Cam's mouth and does wet, suggestive things with his tongue as he shoves Cam around and up against the wall. Cam's all for that; he gets his hands on John's ass and pulls his hips in for friction. It'd be good to come like this, fast and hard, and then strip and get into bed to mess around some more. He can't imagine that John's not on board with this plan, until John does that lingering pull-back thing and then takes a step away. John hands Cam the beer bottle and grins.
The curtains can go hang, Cam tells him. Come back here.
Yeah, right. John shakes off his clunky untied boots, considers, and then peels off his socks as well. Damn, but Cam's missed John's toes, and not being able to play with them is just cruel. You gave me hell for messing with the kitchen, this is kind of a milestone.
Cam figures maybe it is. There's a kind of doublethink that goes hand in hand with the double lives they're leading. They're living together, everyone at the Mountain knows that, but it's the kind of living together where no one's surprised that John bought a crappy old Chevy Nova that's up on blocks in the yard, or that Cam has a basketball hoop in the back. John putting gauzy red things on the kitchen windows had freaked Cam out, because that was a whole other kind of living together.
What the fuck, Sheppard, he'd said, and John'd shrugged and said screw you, his tone easy but his eyes hard. After, Cam realized that he'd drawn a line circumscribing their relationship, and he'd had to work his ass off to convince John that he wasn't just fucking around with him, that whatever they were was real. Real enough that without John the house was off-kilter and empty.
Don't blame me for the curtains, he says as John gets up on the desk and uses some kind of superpower to separate the inside lace part from the heavier outside layer, which he starts hooking quickly onto different rails. John pauses to shoot Cam a dark look, and Cam raises his hands. I didn't buy the damn things.
John's already got the left side hung and pulls the lace over with the blue panel shoved back, and okay, it gives the room a totally different look from the broken roller blind Cam had been using.
John's also not saying anything, and it's an incomplete, uneasy kind of silence.
I got a package from my mother, Cam says, and sticks his thumbs in his jeans pockets, beer bottle dangling between his fingers to rest cool along his leg. There's this matching blue and white thing that goes on the bed, and like pillowcases.
Huh, John says.
She's not real happy, Cam adds. I mean, I never said, and I let her assume that, you know, maybe there'd be grandkids some day. You kind of come out of left field. But after bringing Vala home that one time, well. She knows straight isn't a prescription for being happy or normal.
John finishes up the last row of hooks and fixes that side like the first before crouching to jump down.
I know you're not normal, he says, rocking a little as he curls his bare toes against the wide wooden floorboards. You happy?
Yeah, Cam says. He crosses over to put the bottle on the desk and get his arms around John. He pulls so John's back is snug against his chest and John's hair is soft on his face. I'm pretty damn happy, he says, and nuzzles against John's ear. You make me happy.
I don't know how to do this, John says, his voice sandpapery raw.
Cam thinks that's funny. You think I do? He asks. Man, I can't even put up curtains.
The people I'm working with have started killing each other off, John says flatly. Cam's pretty sure he means that literally; John was reassigned to Project Sampaati and he's not allowed to talk about it. Cam knows it has to do with the Icarus fuckup and an ancient ship called Destiny, and he knows that sometimes after missions John's horribly uncomfortable in his own skin. He wishes things could be different, but if they were John wouldn't be here. John's still talking, saying, and your mother just bought sheets for you and some guy, when Cam puts two fingers over John's mouth.
The important thing is, you come home, Cam says, mouth on the rough whiskers along John's jawline. Just... keep doing that.
Like you can talk, John says, and it's true that Cam's probably in the line of fire more often.
Get on the damn bed, Cam says, and John laughs, so Cam throws him on the bed and pulls his clothes mostly off and sits on him.
How're you planning on fucking me with your jeans still on? John asks.
There isn't a romantic bone in your whole body, is there? Cam says, hauling his t-shirt up over his head and dropping it on John's face before getting off the bed and stripping the rest of the way. This isn't fucking, it's making love.
Oh yeah? John says.
Cam smacks him in the head and tells him to pay attention.
John's pretty distracted, though. Cam gets John sweating and gasping for release before he presses the point.
You think this is fucking? he asks, holding himself up over John, back tensing and arms stiff with the need to get back to the business of sex.
John shakes his head, wild-eyed, and reaches for Cam's dick.
Damn straight, Cam tells him. Don't you forget it. And he comes so hard he sees darkness and stars.
John rags on him after for making John wait for his orgasm, but Cam doesn't really care. John gets up to get a towel and finds the box from Cam's mother.
John drags the big blue comforter up the bed and rolls himself up against Cam's side, even though the afternoon sunlight is dancing through the curtains and they're neither of them old enough to need naps. Cam breathes slow and lets John settle an arm around his waist.
Don't let me screw this up, John says, real quiet, probably mostly asleep.
Always come home, Cam answers; and after a minute has to add, Just tell me when I'm the one screwing things up.
There's a pause, and then John says, Deal, and yawns.
Tomorrow, Cam figures, he'll ask John if he's happy. Right now, there's sun and warmth and John smells the way he should, so Cam closes his eyes and dreams.