Personajes: Brasil, Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay, Colombia, Francia, España y ambas Italias.
Warning: It’s brarg. And they show it and there’s a little something so it’s not safe for work.
Resumen: No way. I write it so you read it. Read.
The evening was warm. The soft friendly air was seeping into every corner of the house. More than half the family was still there, but since the family was huge and covered more than one continent, the house felt empty by now. The tired mumbling voices danced lazily around the ones that fought the heat of the afternoon to stay on their feet, and through the back door the loud drunk laughter of the ones that stayed outside echoed in the kitchen. Martín’s country house seemed more than enough to celebrate Christmas, now that it was less crowded. Most of the guests had already left the house to get ready for a night celebration with their closest ones. Some had tried to stagger to the door and decided they could stay a while longer until they could stabilize and go home while, amused, they rejected Martín’s unbelievable amount of food.
Sebastián frowned at his younger cousin’s dizzy smile while he pushed him from the table to place the paper packages he was helping Martín carry. The ripped paper showed the dozens of facturas that most of them thought they wouldn’t be able to digest. Sebastián went back to the kitchen to help carry the mugs filled with coffee that was making Luciano and Coquito giggle while they made it. Italian hands did the dishes while Martín leaned against Feliciano and begged him to stop doing so. He laughed and pushed Martín away, and Luciano turned from the little cups with different colors and different flowery patterns he was handling to hear the soft Italian murmur, and it was something sweeter and more homely than he could ever remember having.
He took one more mug from Catalina and watched her nudge Martín with her elbow to get his help carrying the rest. Martín leaned over her the same way he had done with Feliciano and tickled her, while keeping her body close to his so the cups wouldn’t be shaken too much. Luciano laughed and pushed them both out of the kitchen.
He could be there, if he wanted. He was welcome to tickle Martín’s side, and laugh at the mess his hair was, and back Catalina up while she pinched his waist and mocked him about his love handles. But he couldn’t have been there some years ago. He could have been with his sisters now, and he had not even called his dad yet today. But he couldn’t have been right here, putting down mugs in front of Sebastián and watching Francis refuse the coffee Martín offered. And it was exactly where he wanted to be. He knew Martín had expected him here before he came. He had heard him say he found it natural to have Luciano here, he was expected to take part. But it had taken so much time, so many years to come to this, that he now found himself ashamed that he hadn’t recognized it yet.
Francis leaned back in his chair and tried to pour some more wine ‘into’ his glass. His dazed smile almost reached his ears when María gently pushed the tip of the bottle to prevent the little red stain on the mantel from being a puddle.
“Thank you, ma cherie,” he started, abusing the last syllables of the very forced spanish he used when he was around them. “If you’re going to be the one serving me like this, I might as well miss that stupid flight and stay here with you. There’s little to miss from Europe right now.” His delicate gestures were magnified by the little control alcohol allowed him as his body swayed with the strength of his words. “The pressure, the crisis. I’m tired of this. I’m too tired right now to stand this one more time.” He focused his eyes in Daniel’s as the little one raised them to look at him. “You’re all so young, you know so little about making this once and again.” He jumped from his seat as if an electric jolt went through him. “That’s it! ANTONIO! You’ll have to kill me to get me onto that plane with you. Do you hear me? I’ll spend this Christmas with my lovely nephews, I’m enjoying myself here,” he said as he gave Martín’s leg two strong pats.
Antonio turned from his own conversation, rubbing his ear and glaring at Francis. He didn’t seem to care about his reasons, but he did find a way to make it Martín’s fault that he found trouble on his plans to get back home.
Luciano couldn’t find the strength to be bothered by what Francis could do or say once he was away from them, once he was sober and back in real life. When they stopped being his lovely nephews with their lovely meals and their tamed smiles, and went back to being markets, real problems, and competitions. And there it was again, that little thing Francis wasn’t part of. That place where Martín expected Luciano to be. He remembered the time when he wouldn’t be caught dead under Martín’s roof, looking at that goofy drunk smile while Lovino stood between him and his father, flailing his arms like a crazed chicken because Antonio had once again found something in his son to complain about. And then he not so suddenly realized he was the only one besides the three of them paying attention to their noisy argument.
The discussion took a little turn and Francis looked positively disgusted to find his wine glass empty. He lifted himself from his seat and took the hand Martín offered him. He loudly announced he needed to see for himself that so called great collection Martín took so much pride in. They got their uneven steps to it, and Luciano joined. He put his hand in Martín’s waist when they went down the wooden stairs, pretending not to notice his balance was much better than the other. There was a dark short corridor, and there it was, one of the many little prides of Martín Hernandez. The temperature dropped when they stepped into his beloved bodega.
The argentinean turned on the soft lights and closed the door behind them. He had acquired this place from an old local family wine company, so there were still some empty barrels resting against the stone back wall. The other two walls were filled with perfectly arranged dark bottles and Martín’s long strides paraded in front of them, as he proudly gave them a speech of each and every option they had for the lunch and the dessert, stopping to mention which family of his unbelievable amazing people was responsible for each bottle, and where they had been made. Francis was ready and quick to question with a cocky smile every assumption and suggestion Martín made, so they ended up with fine tall glasses in their hands, four different bottles opened by their sides, and all three of their asses on the floor. There was some aggressive exchange of laughter and some nostalgic exchange of critics, and at some point they added a little plate with diced cheese to the gathering, as well as the remaining European guests.
It was almost dark outside when Martín raised his voice so his command would reach upstairs.
“Can someone call a taxi for these old fogeys?” he yelled, leaning against the side of the door.
But when the others shared their goodbye words, their goodbye hugs and their goodbye kisses, Luciano didn’t stand up. Martín only looked at him once while he was seeing off his beloved mamma, and then leaned against the door while they shared a few more comments and a couple more laughs. There was a mumbled excuse from Martín when he locked the door with the little lock, but it was impossible for Luciano to hear it when Martín’s lips were curved in a lazy, confident smile. Luciano’s back was resting against the wall and there still was a half empty glass on his hand, and he had a hard time taking his eyes away from that smile while Martín got closer. Martín sat by his side and made a little gesture towards the bottle Luciano was drinking from.
“So you did like the rosé better, you delicate flower,” he said, pleased, and Luciano’s own smile spread as he fixed his eyes on the nearly transparent shades inside his glass. He wanted to tell Martín what he had thought earlier. He wanted to let him know there was something new between them, and he had recognized it. He didn’t want to frown like he was doing now, and didn’t want to look concerned. He knew exactly what he wanted to say, and just couldn’t find the words to do it.
It wasn’t the first time this happened, but he had to admit it was one of the sweetest. He could see a question starting in Matín’s concerned eyes, and chose the only way he could manage to express what he felt.
He didn’t need to hold Martín’s face, because he was also leaning into a kiss. The only thing he needed to do was hold his waist and bring his body closer. He was barely conscious of the glasses still in their hands, and he was sure Martín would forgive him for the occasional waste. They slid on the floor and Luciano reached for Martín’s hair, trying to get on top of him. He felt the tension from all day’s work drain from Martín’s body as he rested in the floor. His hand was lazily caressing his back, his leg leaning against Luciano’s. The Brazilian took a moment to breathe and take the glasses out of the way. He set his dark hands on each of the blonde’s sides and licked his lips before trying to speak again.
“I just wanted you to know it’s nice to be here with you now,” he managed to blurt, and he had no clue how inebriated he sounded until he saw it reflected in Martín’s mocking smile as he slid a hand to Luciano’s neck.
“You’re one cuddly, sensitive drunk, you know?” he answered, hiding how touched he was with a fast strong move. Martín pushed Luciano off him, to the floor next to him and sat down on top of his stomach. Luciano fought off vertigo and panted while trying to get his bearings. “And I’m glad you’re feeling so grateful.” The heavy weight of Martín’s body shifted on top of him as he took off his shirt. “Because I have a favor to ask you.”
“Does it have to be right now?” Luciano smirked, trying to regain control of himself and the situation. “Seems like the perfect moment to me,” said Martín, leaning closer to Luciano’s face. Touching his lips with the tip of his nose.
“Alright, tell me.” Luciano’s hand wandered again to Martín’s waist and there it clenched around his muscles when he answered slowly, determined and amused:
“Please fuck me.”
Luciano would love to swear he managed to call him ‘son of a bitch’ before, and not while he moaned, and that the moan happened after and not before Martín’s hand had reached his pants.
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