When the last movie ended, everyone else was asleep. JC had slid down
till he was slumped across Chris's lap, and when Chris glanced at the
other couch, Justin was draped over one of Joey's shoulders and Lance
was curled up against the other. Lance was snoring almost in Joey's ear,
but Joey slept on obliviously.
They were all getting older and slower, Chris thought. Even Lance with
his souped-up heart, even Justin with his workouts. Even JC with his
shining eyes. Then again, Star Wars movie marathons just took longer
than they used to. It was really more surprising that Chris himself was
still awake to see the first rays of sunlight creeping in the corner of
JC's breaths came gently and steadily, warm huffs of air against Chris's
knees, though he wasn't snoring at all. Chris let the tape run all the
way through the credits to the end, till it reversed itself
automatically and began rewinding. He kept his legs as still as he could
under JC's side.
After the VCR finally clicked to a halt, Chris glanced around
reluctantly for the remote. It was lying on the coffee table between the
empty salsa bowl and a half-full glass of milk. He thought he could
reach it without getting up, so he bent forward carefully, resting one
hand on JC's shoulder for balance. JC felt warm, his bones so solid
under Chris's fingers that Chris allowed himself the slightest of
squeezes as he leaned over.
JC rubbed his thumb in a small arc back and forth across Chris's thigh.
Startled, Chris bore down harder on JC's shoulder. JC rolled a half-turn
under the pressure, winding up on his back. His hair brushed silkily
against Chris's leg. The remote slid sideways across the table. Chris
stared at it and took a slow breath.
He looked down at JC, and JC's eyes were as open as the clear blue sky.