By Kay

Disclaimer: I don't own Everworld. Everworld is un-ownable. Like the ocean. Or muffins.

Author's Note: Implied David/Christopher SLASH, though perhaps one-sided. Post!series timeline, mention of drunken antics and stuff. Huzzah. Watch out for the little OOC bits. They have teeth.

Christopher doesn't touch him anymore except when he's drunk.

David doesn't care. There's something even relieving about it; the familiar dance steps in a pattern he's given up on figuring out, it makes things easier. Less thinking involved. That's how they both like it.

But still, it becomes their secret obsessive ritual, this sort of step-back-step-back-back-back-lurch, in which Christopher loops a heavy arm around his neck and irritates the short hairs growing there, and still David can't bring himself to give a damn. Cheap wine, grape-like but not grape, sours the breath that exhales into his face. "You're not drunk," Christopher says, almost disappointed, and pulls away. David doesn't know why- he hasn't touched a drop of alcohol for months and it won't change now.

"You've had enough." He'd gone from disgusted to angry to tired every time this happened. Now he's not even tired, David just does it, a chore or action automatically preformed like cleaning his sword or checking the infirmary every time he returns to see if any familiar faces are still peering up from the bedding. And the easier it becomes, the more Christopher seems to do it- he tests his boundaries, pulls at the ribbon tape, lets more truths blurt out unhindered into dangerous pathways they both can't travel, but David- well, he lets him, anyway.

It's the way Christopher is, funnily enough. He's starting to get it. Except for when he doesn't get it at all.

The tavern is musky and full of too many bodies. It smells like mold and sweat and frequent sex, something that clings to Christopher now like a tangible list of where he has been day after day.

The arm around his shoulders slips more comfortably around his neck, like a noose gently slung with warm, awkwardly soft flesh. Christopher is more heat than the summer night. When he pulls David close, David can't help but notice the glazed, unfocused blue of his eyes or the weathered pallor to his face, drawn as it is, somehow desperate, but then Christopher mumbles drunkenly, "I want to go home," and he's afraid to ask if home is Daggermouth or home is that fractured place in their memories back there where they can't get to anymore.

Christopher's head lolls against his shoulder, sticky blonde hair pressing imprints into the bare skin exposed between his neck and ridge of his shoulder, and David leads them towards the doors. It's easy. Christopher moves with him like water, rolling his footsteps and wavering between movements, struggling through the fog of too much ale and not enough sleep. It feels like the sea again, like this, waves pushing into David's hipbone and ribcage, and he walks with Christopher like he would on the shiny wooden deck of one of his father's precious ships- sway with her, keep her steady by flowing with the crests and lulls- and inhales the sharp crispness of the air outside once they are clear of the swinging panels.

Christopher makes a funny sound that isn't funny at all. "I think I'm going to be sick."

"Don't," David says, sharp. Then, "It's because you don't know when to stop."

The shift of movement could have been a shrug, but Christopher mixes the signals up somewhere in between and ends up just holding tighter around David's neck. He's pressed his face into the damp spot behind his right shoulder, as if by pushing hard enough he could force thoughts straight into the bone. "If I got what I wanted, I'd stop."

David doesn't think even Christopher knows what the hell he wants anymore.

"You're a pain in the ass," he says, but he feels as if he has missed the point entirely. Like he's the one drunk. The one who hasn't come to his senses.

When they get back to Christopher's room, David waits to make sure he can fumble his way through unlocking the door. The key slips once. Twice. Christopher swears with a thick tongue, something vaguely not-Christopher he had probably picked up in the bars and kept for his own. David is about to step forward when it clicks.

Christopher doesn't move. "You're goin' to bed?"


The door shuts on his answer almost before he's said it. David stares at it a while longer, quiet and face dark, then turns to walk down the hallway on legs that feel like they're still adjusting to land.