Nathan was surprised by the fact that there was no difference in temperature between the air in the warehouse and the air outside. The wind still blew from the north, and it bit at Nathan’s exposed skin. He shivered, dreading the prospect of three whole months of weather like this.
“Cold?” Tom displayed no sign of discomfort, and he wasn’t even dressed as warmly as Nathan was, Nathan having borrowed the jacket Emmy had made for Tom.
“Very,” Nathan replied. He could not keep a grin from his face; however, as he thought of the ways two people could combat the cold.
“It is getting colder. And dark. Perhaps…” Tom trailed off, obviously thinking. “I wonder if Dimitri will set the fire again?”
“Probably.” It was the man’s job, however annoying it was. Dimitri had not visited them since the first day Nathan had woken. Now, though, heat seemed rather necessary, and Nathan grimaced as the wind picked up again. Sensing it, he felt nothing out of the ordinary, no storm, but it would definitely not slow anytime soon, and a north wind never meant warmth. There were ways to light fires without a mage, but perhaps not on a scale necessary for the fireplace.
“Let’s head back.” Tom was looking at him, and Nathan smiled reassuringly.
As they neared the house, Tom stopped, Nathan following his gaze. Cold pinpricks touched his skin.
“This is snow,” Tom said, happiness suffusing his tone.
The snow surprised Nathan. It was not pure ice falling from the sky, but rather a quiet fluff that made no sound. The air was dead, the snow falling uninterrupted. Nathan breathed in the cold, the warmth of his breath melting one of the snow puffs as it fell.
The tiny freezing dots fell onto Nathan’s face, their sting quickly deteriorating into nothingness.
“Is this what you sensed?” Nathan asked his lover.
“I don’t know.” Tom quietly watched the snow fall. “Maybe.”
Nathan walked over to Tom putting his arm around his lover’s bare shoulders. He had to admit, for all its cold, the snow was beautiful.
The water mage raised his arm slightly, making a circular motion with his hand, and the snow puffs around his hand whirled with the motion before they suddenly grew bigger and fell to the ground. These did not melt immediately into the loam as the rest did, but remained as little clumps of ice. Nathan felt the muscles in Tom’s shoulders move as his arm did, and he appreciated the mage’s strength anew, both magical and physical.
Tom looked him in the eye at that moment, and smiled. “I should explore this.”
“Not now,” Nathan gently chided, keeping his voice low. “It’s late.” He put his other arm around Tom, enfolding the other man in a hug, kissing his neck lightly.
Tom flushed. “You’re right.” He awkwardly disentangled himself from his lover and started inside, Nathan close behind.
The house showed no sign of entry, and the fireplace was cold. Nathan grinned. Perhaps Tom could be convinced to do more than huddle for warmth. Nathan was feeling much better.
He walked up behind Tom and began to massage the other man’s shoulders, shocked at the amount of tension he found. Tom groaned and leaned against him, letting the blond work out the kinks in his tight muscles.
“Tense, aren’t you?” Nathan asked.
“Of course.” Tom hung his head, letting Nathan’s fingers work further up his neck. “I was worried for you.”
Nathan stopped his ministrations, pushing so he turned Tom to face him. “I’m fine.”
Tom couldn’t meet his eyes. “You…you were hurt. Because of me. Because I wasn’t ready.”
Nathan tilted his head, sitting on the couch and pulling Tom down to sit next to him. “It wasn’t your fault.”
“But…I wasn’t ready.” Tom met his eyes, his blue eye dim with guilt. “I didn’t know anything. Even talking to Dimitri for five minutes made me realize that. I was so…stupid. I thought I was strong, but…”
“You are,” Nathan replied. “But you were alone, young and inexperienced. That’s all. There’s no shame in that.”
“I got you hurt.”
“No, I got myself hurt. I wanted to help you. I thought I was strong too, that Ruthen was a sitting duck. But I was wrong, just as you were.”
Tom sighed, looking up at the ceiling, and Nathan was filled with a desire to kiss him. “What if I can’t do it? What if I’m not strong enough, and can’t change anything? What if Ruthen stays in power, and nothing changes? Mages will be killed or sickened, weakened…”
Nathan put a finger to Tom’s lips. “Don’t think that way.” He moved closer, putting his arms around the muscular man. “For now, focus on what you can do.”
Tom’s breathing quickened, and Nathan kissed the underside of his chin. “Let me help you,” Nathan said. He trailed his hand down to Tom’s member, stroking it firmly, relishing as it hardened in his hand. “Just relax.”
Tom gasped, laying down on the pillows and letting Nathan lay on top of him, his hand never leaving the brown haired man’s growng erection. He stroked it firmly, with varying speeds, Tom moaning and gasping underneath him.
Nathan bit back a sigh as Tom’s hand found him, stroking him in turn. The sensations built quickly, Nathan’s hips thrusting of their own accord, Tom smiling up at him. They both breathed hard, Nathan’s balls tightening. It had been too long.
“It’s going to be fine, Tom,” Nathan whispered. “I’m not hurt.” Tom nodded once, jerkily, his hips bucking in Nathan’s hand as the blond leaned down and nibbled his neck, moving up to kiss him. “I love you.” Nathan mouthed, then shut his eyes tightly as he succumbed to his orgasm.
Tom pulsed too, moaning, ribbons of cum shooting and overflowing out of Nathan’s cupped hand. Nathan caught him in a kiss, relishing his effect on the other man even as he shuddered through his own climax.
“Nathan…” Tom managed as he broke the kiss, putting an arm around Nathan’s shoulders and pulling him closer. “I love you. I was so afraid…”
“I know.” Nathan kissed him on the cheek, resting his head on Tom’s chest. “But it’s alright. We’ll figure things out. But for now, just rest.”
Tom closed his eyes, and Nathan did the same, sleep stealing over them both. The cold, for now, was forgotten.