"You are such a wanker!"
"Well at least I'm not being an immature little bitch! Grow up, Vince."
"Don't you dare tell me to fucking grow up! You started this! I was drunk, what did you expect?"
"You fucking wanted it."
"I did not! He touched my arse, it caught me off guard!"
"What, and you just happened to stick your tongue down his throat? You just happened to cop a little feel? Just stop it Vince, you're being pathetic. Just grow the fuck up and stop being such a drama queen. It's nothing but attention seeking and you know it. Just cause you had a crap childhood and got your way via a few hissy fits in the past doesn't mean they'll work on me."
Vince froze. His angry, furrowed face melted into a neutral expression. The anger faded from his eyes, yet his fists stayed clenched. He stared at Howard for a moment before storming from the room. The slam of the door that followed was almost deafening.
Howard sat heavily down on the sofa, running his fingers through his fine hair and sighing.
He ran over the situation in his head. He knew he shouldn't have called Vince all those names - he was surprisingly sensitive - but Vince knew what he was doing. He was fully aware of the bloke he'd been kissing when they were at that bar, and he knew it would piss Howard off. And it had. More than Vince expected, Howard thought. He'd called Vince every name under the sun, eliciting the response "You are such a wanker!" Howard had been acting a little arsey before they went out and Vince knew that a little snog would do no harm, but he certainly hadn't expected such an eruption of anger.
In hindsight, calling Vince attention seeking probably wasn't his smartest move. Vince was attention seeking when it came to fashion and experimental makeup, but Howard knew that he couldn't stand being accused of acting deliberately provocative. Vince felt like he didn't deserve someone as "perfect" as Howard, as he said many times, and he always tried his best not to reciprocate when people flirted with him.
Vince loved Howard, he really did, and when people accused him of seeking attention he always kicked right off.
Howard groaned inwardly as he realised what he'd done. He'd found Vince's Achilles' heel and pummelled it. And that remark about his childhood... Christ, what was he thinking?!
He knew Vince hadn't had a particularly nice childhood. His parents hadn't been the most caring people and had eventually realised this, hence his later upbringing by Bryan Ferry. He didn't like discussing it and Howard knew that he'd been subject to a few panic attacks and lashings out when confronted. The tall man winced as he realised what a sore spot he'd hit. And it was irrelevant. Gosh, he felt like such a twat.
Groaning inwardly, Howard stood up and cautiously approached the bedroom he and Vince now shared. He knocked gently on the door and, hearing no response, decided to go in anyway.
Vince was lying on their shared bed, wrapped in one of Howard's old jumpers and clutching Howard's pillow, staring up at the ceiling. He was fully aware of his boyfriend's presence but didn't move a muscle. In spite of everything, Howard couldn't help but smile at the sight. The smaller man always looked positively adorable when he wore Howard's clothes. Whenever he was upset or sulky he wore them, just so he could be near his love's musky scent. Howard sighed sadly.
"Vince?" he inquired gently from the doorway, feeling too worried to move anY closer. God, he'd fucked up.
"I have nothing to say to you," Vince retorted bitterly, the cracks in his voice giving away the fact that he was close to tears.
"Not even that?" Howard smiled sadly, sighing when Vince said nothing. He sighed and closed the door, carefully approaching the bed. "May I sit?"
Vince shrugged, eyes not leaving the ceiling. "It's your bed too."
Howard settled onto the soft duvet, the silence screaming at him to say something.
"Gee, thanks," Vince spat, the effect of his tone ruined by the tear slipping down his cheek.
"No, Vince, I'm sorry. I really am."
"Sweetheart, look at me? Please?"
It took a few seconds, but Vince tore his eyes away from the slightly cracked ceiling and gave Howard a 'well?' look.
The Northerner took a deep breath and reached out to hold Vince's hand, feeling slight relief when the small man didn't pull away.
"I'm sorry about what I said. All those names... That was wrong of me and I don't mean any of them. It was a spur of the moment thing and I am truly, truly sorry. I love you so, so much, you know that, right?"
Vince stared at Howard for a moment before suddenly bursting into tears, face crumpling.
"Oh, baby," Howard soothed, scooching closer to his boyfriend and pulling the crying man into his arms, heart breaking as he felt Vince's hands clutch to him like he was going to leave. "Please don't cry, baby. It's okay."
"It's not!" Vince wailed against Howard's chest. "I was being a bitch, and I wanted you to get angry with me for kissing that bastard but I didn't mean it, Howard, I swear I didn't!"
"Shh," Howard soothed, rubbing Vince's back, "I know you didn't, I know. It's okay."
Vince took in a gasping breath, pulling away from Howard to look at him. "I fucked everything up, didn't I? I know I totally overreacted, I'm sorry."
"You have nothing to be sorry for," Howard insisted, gently wiping away Vince's tears. "I shouldn't have called you those names, that was awful of me."
"But I was a bitch. I am a bitch."
"But you're my bitch," Howard chucked, laughing as Vince swatted his chest, eyes beginning to twinkle again. He suddenly threw himself into Howard's arms and held on tightly. "I forgive you. I hate fighting with you; you mean the world to me, Howard Moon."
Howard blinked away tears, pressing a kiss to Vince's hair and breathing in the familiar scent of sweet shampoo and hairspray. "I love you too, Vince Noir. So damn much."