I have been in love with SBJ's More Than Human for years, which you don't need to read to get this story, but you should read anyways because it's so good. But you know what else I love? Her short fics, such as the one this fic is based on, "Sign", which you should read as well, because this is a part two of that short fic.
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When Buttercup pulled away again, Butch chased her with his lips, stopping millimeters away from hers, his breath lingering between them. He was tempted, oh so tempted, to close the gap again, but Buttercup swallowed hard and pulled away, reaching down for her phone and keeping her eyes firmly on the safety of the small screen.
Butch's mouth felt dry and his chest felt heavy as he watched her. A million thoughts ran through his head, willing him to say something, anything, to interrupt the heavy silence between them.
"Well," Buttercup said finally, turning off the screen of her phone and pocketing it, sneaking a quick, almost shy glance up at him, her cheeks the faintest shade of pink against the harsh streetlight that they were standing under.
Any other moment, Butch would have laughed. A year ago, he would have teased her for it. But tonight? He asked himself why the smear of pink was so funny in the first place. And stranger than that, why he couldn't seem to keep the heat away from his face either as he recalled the imprint of her lips on his.
Buttercup squared her shoulders and started walking ahead. "I was right," she called out over her shoulder. "You wouldn't last longer than me."
Butch's lips parted in confusion as he took a second to process the meaning behind her words.
Oh. Right. The bet. This had all been about the stupid bet.
He forced out a laugh that had a little bit too much of an edge and jogged up to catch up to her.
"You used hands. That wasn't part of the deal."
"You were the one who wasn't supposed to react no matter what I did. It's not my fault that you can't keep your hands to yourself," she retorted.
Butch thought back to where his hands had been during their kiss, but the only thing he could remember, the only thing he could feel, was how his lips parted for her, how her hands felt at the nape of his neck, and how he now felt like an ink splatter left on the paper after the pen had been lifted away.
His hands were the last thing on his mind. He found himself sneaking a glance at her mouth again, and quickly fixed his eyes on the distant silhouette of the Townsville skyline, stuffing his hands deep into the pockets of his jacket.
"How are you so sure you'd last longer? You were allowed to do whatever you wanted." He pulled his mouth back in a snarky grin, the one he knew she hated, as he leaned into her space. "And, as I seem to recall, you got so into it that you dropped your phone, which means you don't know how long I actually lasted."
"So, what are you suggesting? That we try again?"
Butch almost tripped over an imaginary crack in the sidewalk as he moved away from her. "Nope, I already know that it was longer than you."
"So you want to time me this time?"
Buttercup had stopped walking, standing underneath another streetlight, this one a block away from the one where she signed herself into his memory.
Butch turned around and lingered under the streetlight in front of the one she was standing under. He shrugged. "Why not? But it's fine if you don't want to. We both know that I was going to last longer, anyways."
Her eyes narrowed and she stalked up to him to stand under the same streetlight as him.
He swallowed as he tried to keep the nonchalant expression planted on his face.
This was just a bet after all. A stupid bet, that he found himself hoping she wouldn't decline. He told himself it was because he wanted to win. He was competitive after all. They both were.
"Okay, so time me."
Butch blinked, and considered coming up with a witty reply, but found himself silently opening the timer on his phone and placed it in her open hand, his thumb lingering on the start button.
He inched closer, until nearly every part of them was inscribed against each other, save for their faces, their eyes not quite meeting each other. Hovering over her face, he pressed the start button and shoved the phone in her hand before using his free hand to cup the back of her neck and tilted her face up and closed the final hairsbreadth of a gap between them.
True to her word, Buttercup stayed as stoic as a statue as Butch snaked an am around her waist and pulled her closer to him, his fingers digging into her like a pen digging into thick paper, searing and molding itself into the shape that would remain long after the ink had eroded away.
Now that his lips were brushing over her upper lip with the softest touches, Butch was thinking about how it felt when she moved against him, when she wasn't so still, when she signed herself into his mouth. A signature that would be seared on his lips forever.
And he found himself wishing that they had never made the stupid bet in the first place, never signed the imaginary contract that had determined that this would never become anything more than a game.
He used his lips to part hers as he deepened the kiss, and vaguely felt a shudder of what felt like acceptance flow through her.
The crickets changed the tune of their songs in the darkness beyond their shared streetlight and Butch was aware that the terms of their agreement had now changed as well. Buttercup tossed the phone onto the grass, and reached up to pull him closer, one hand on the back of his neck, where he hadn't yet stopped feeling the ghost of when her hands had been there before, and the other over his jaw, using the tip of her tongue to trail a path along his lower lip, deepening the kiss and signing a new contract.