“We’re gonna get out of this. You. Me. Everybody. We’re gonna make it. I promise.”
“Thank you. But that’s not what your eyes are saying.”
“I guess my eyes aren’t good at comforting either, huh?” Rodimus said, and his eyes were as wan as his smile. He’d aimed for levity and the gravity of their situation refused to allow it.
The corner of Drift’s lips lifted a little higher than before. “Well, they have their moments,” he replied.
Rodimus chuckled, thin though it was. He gave Drift a longer look before he planted his hands on the ground and shuffled his aft closer, near enough now that their armor touched. Their fields came into sizzling contact, buzzing sharply before settling into a warm, familiar thrum.
Drift ached for it. He’d missed Rodimus so much.
“I really am sorry,” Rodimus said, another scoot making it so that he was all but notched against Drift’s side. The heat of him was so familiar. So welcome.
Drift straightened his leg, resting the Great Sword across his lap. “You’ve said that already,” he murmured as the pulse in Rodimus’ field grew stronger, better an embrace than a gentle touch.
“Yeah, but it bears repeating.” Rodimus nudged him gently with a shoulder, their armor in careful contact. “Hey, is this okay? Me sitting here, I mean.”
Drift rested his free hand on the sword’s hilt and leaned in against his dear friend. Their heads rested together intimately, until they shared the same ventilating space. “It’s fine.”
“Good.” Rodimus cycled a ventilation and dared to lay a hand on Drift’s upper thigh. The weight and touch were appropriately chaste, yet they sent a trill of warmth through Drift’s spark. “I’m going to keep saying it, you know.”
Rodimus turned his head, face shifting inward, nuzzling against the side of Drift’s head. “I missed you so much.” His lips brushed Drift’s cheek, a barely present point of contact that nonetheless made Drift ache.
“I’m glad you came back,” Rodimus added, his fingers trembling minutely where they rested on Drift’s thigh. They moved neither up nor down as though waiting for permission.
He really had changed. Perhaps not by leaps and bounds, but honestly, it was the incremental changes which tended to linger anyway. They were more genuine.
Drift worked his intake. “Yeah, well, look how much trouble you get into without me.”
Rodimus laughed quietly. “Get into a lot of trouble with you, too,” he murmured, his nose brushing over the arch of Drift’s cheek again. “I am so sorry.”
Drift swallowed down a sigh. He turned his head and brushed his lips over Rodimus’, a sweeping contact that made his mouth tingle. Rodimus’ lips were as warm and soft as he remembered.
“And I said I forgive you,” Drift said against Rodimus’ lips before he claimed them again, in a kiss with more presence behind it.
He would still term it chaste, but that didn’t make it any less fierce. He heard Rodimus make a noise, like a sound of surrender, before Rodimus curled a hand around Drift’s head, though gently.
His field crashed over Drift’s, relief and apology and affection all swirling within it. He had yet to forgive himself, Drift realized.
Well, if they survived this, they had plenty of time to work on that.
Whatever it took.