At the End of the Day

by TheRimmerConnection

Disclaimer: Not mine, even though I'm the only one who knows what they were eating :)

Illya, you know, when you smile like that, it makes my stomach do the weirdest things. I wish you wouldn't, at least not at me. I'm having enough trouble already, you know? No. I guess you probably don't. Ah... How can I put this? Your voice drives me crazy. Even the way you pronounce my name all wrong... but then, I know you're not all that impressed with the way I pronounce yours, so perhaps we're quits. But your voice makes me feel calmer, even when you were yelling at me earlier for being so stupid, and yes, I'll admit it now, I was stupid. I was in a hurry and I was more worried about getting back to you than getting myself through safely. Waverly would kill me himself if he found out. You're not meant to take those risks if you're carrying the files we need, I know that. I know.

You won't tell Waverly. You could, but I know you won't. Well, I won't tell him you could have gotten the file five hours earlier if you'd just damn well slept with the woman. I know I didn't want you to, and I know neither of us knew it at the time, but the silly girl had it right there, on her nightstand, and she wanted you, my friend. Of course she did. Who wouldn't? I sometimes wish I could figure you out. You've had girls. You like them. You get more genuine offers than I ever do, but you don't take them up. Why? I'm not saying it's a bad thing. I'm not actually too proud of my record, but if you'd just let yourself have a good time there... Ah well.

The light is shining on your hair, just on the back there. You don't know it, it's only just Spring so it's not hot enough yet to be a nuisance, but it's bright enough, it's making your whole head glow. I'm surprised the waiters passing behind you don't have to shield their eyes.

And would you, please, stop wiggling your eyebrows at me like that. I know your story is funny (even though I also know it's second hand), and it deserves the eyebrows, but you're making me respond in kind, and that feels like is flirting, you just don't realise it. You're the only person I've ever met whose eyes genuinely twinkle. Especially now, when you're happy and relaxed again. They spark lightning bolts when you're angry though. Really. It's bad enough when it's directed at me, but then I know what I've done, and I know it'll be okay. You always forgive me in the end. God knows why. It's a hundred times scarier when you're angry with an adversary. You always look like you're going to kill them, even when you don't. That's why I remind you not to do it sometimes. Not that I don't trust you, but you turn into a much more terrifying man when you're actually angry. Sometimes I think you're angrier if they've been getting at me, but I think I'm just projecting myself onto you there. Because I get that much more mad if they hurt you. Not that you need my sympathy. Not that you'd take it. Hell, you'd slug me one if I showed it too much.

Hell Illya, if you knew what was going on in my head. If you knew how I can't help undressing you with my eyes when we're alone and safe like this. If you knew the ideas I had about how those stunning lips of yours might taste... I guess I'll never know what you'd think. You might kill me. Or you might return the favour. But wishful thinking never got anyone anywhere. Just quit laughing and smiling and knocking your knees against mine under the table like it doesn't matter. Then, perhaps I could listen to your story properly.

Napoleon, are you even listening to me? Oh, a smile, okay, I forgive you. This is quite funny. Mitchell told it to me... well, sort of. I've changed some of the details, so you can believe it's mine if you want. You know, when you smile like that, it throws me right off. Where was I? Oh yes, the dark-haired man... let's call him...Smith. Really, we should call him Napoleon. I bet his hair is just like yours, almost as floppy as mine at the moment. I can't believe how long you've let it grow, after all the grief you've given me about mine in the past... Doesn't matter, I like it that could run your fingers through that, especially when you don't bother to oil it properly and that stray lock of hair hangs down over your forehead. Hah. Good work Illya Nicovitch... now you've really lost your thread. What was I saying..?

This is the best bit Napoleon, and you don't seem to be paying full attention again. I think your mind's wandering as badly as mine, though you're probably thinking about the affair. How idiotic you were? No I don't suppose so. Though I wish you wouldn't take it for granted that you're forgiven for that. You scared the life out of me. That little blonde you met at the station when I stupidly left you alone for five minutes then? Thank goodness you didn't go to bed with her, or you might not have felt quite so keen to pick up that woman who was throwing herself at me earlier in the evening. Then we'd never have found the file by her bed, because I certainly wasn't taking her there. Not my type. I'm fussier than you. Besides, I'm finding it harder and harder to pretend with them. I don't suppose you have that problem. But after all, I have the same needs as you... if slightly less often, and it's so much easier just to take the pretty girl to bed and not have to worry about it. It's not what I want though.

If I could stop myself, I would. You're wiggling your eyebrows at me, and it's just... I can't help responding, and I know I'm grinning like an idiot, and I know it could easily come across as flirting and... it is. Oh well, at least you're listening now. If you knew how little of my brain I'm devoting to telling this story... I'm too busy mentally removing your trousers and imagining what the skin feels like on the inside of your thighs when it's not running with blood or bandaged up. If you had any idea what I want to do with that beautiful mouth of yours... Well, you'll never know what I think. You might kill me... or perhaps you'd let me do it, after all... Now that really is fantasy. If you could just stop smiling, and needlessly shooting your cuffs, and knocking your knees against mine under the table, as if it doesn't matter. Then perhaps I could finish my story properly.

Story over. Pay the check. Get up. Grab jackets. Brush Napoleon's shoulder. Straighten Illya's lapel. Extend a hand to gesture Illya to go first through the narrow gap between the tables. Let Napoleon go first through the door. Onto the street. Right turn. Walk to the car - too close together. Get in. Napoleon's car. Drop Illya home. Call him back to remind him about... Pull away. Turn at the bottom step just to check... Park up. Go in. Have a nightcap. Go to bed.

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