|By Any Other Name
Author: Guede Mazaka
It's a dark, humid night when Sands asks, and the blankets are rough and scratchy, peeling away with every movement. El doesn't reply because he's thinking about the dried blood still under his nails, the cordite sting in his throat, the smell of death in Sands' hair.
"You know what mine is." The other man presses close, running fingers over El's face. They won't find any expression curving beneath their tips. "Is it that important to you?"
"It isn't important," El finally says. "That's why I don't have one anymore. That's why I've forgotten it."
Sands is very quiet, and very still. His breathing halts almost imperceptibly, then continues on as usual. "Right. Never mind. No one cares, anyway."
"You can call me whatever you want." Under El's hands, the other man relaxes and bows his head. He doesn't offer any suggestions, and in the morning, they'll be the same men as always.