That He Can't


sonny_icon.gif teo_icon.gif

Scene Title That He Can't
Synopsis Sonny wakes up with the wrong face and has a few of his own ideas about saving the world and a pessimistic prognosis. Teo can't explain why he's a slut. They don't make it to the zoo.
Date February 7, 2009

Solstice Condiminiums: Sonny's Home

The apartment is large, sprawling and appointed in a cooly masculine, modern style. The entire far wall is made up of windows that reveal the drifting snow outside. The floors are a deep hardwood, the furniture leather. The modern, shining kitchen is open concept. There's a winding staircase to the left that leads to a small hallway, with two bedrooms. The space is open and roomy - perfect for entertaining high profile guests.

There were lots of handshakes at the party. Lots of political allies to schmooze with, lots of contacts to be made. There were also patients of his there, in particular a lawyer named Mark Colwood whom Sonny took aside to touch up a few crow's feet. Normally he doesn't do that kind of thing at a party, but Mark was among the people whose favours he called in to keep Teo alive.

For some reason, right after the procedure, the headache started. A few aspirin dulled it and the conversation with Teo distracted him for many hours. But now that he's lying still again, he has no choice but to acknowledge the thundering drums behind his eyes. He tries to ignore it, he tries switching positions, but nothing takes the pain away.

Not until he thinks about the pain directly, concentrates briefly on its source.

Then, there's a wash of relief that comes over him. His body relaxes and he falls quickly to sleep.

What Sonny doesn't realize is that he triggered some previously unknown aspect of his power - the ability to pick up a template from someone touched with an intent to use his ability. That's precisely what he did with Mark Colwood. And that's exactly who appears to be lying in bed next to Teo, right down to the last scar, blemish and tattoo on the left bicep. The feeling of relief Sonny felt was actually a transformation. Sonny's build is not so dramatically different from Mark's that Teo would notice anything in the dark, but now that the sun is rising and flooding the room with fingers of light, it's very obvious a change has taken place.

Mark is about ten years older than Sonny, with close-cropped hair, a stronger jawline and a stockier frame. Thanks to the work that the doc has done on him, he's certainly not unattractive, but he looks absolutely nothing like the young Hollywood prettyboy that Teo's expecting to wake up next to.

Sometimes, awakening for Teo is a matter of being asleep and then very abruptly not. Other times, there are phases of transition that come as gradually as daylight bleeds through the soupy darkness of the night-time sky. Saturday morning drops him somewhere in the middle of the continuum, a twitch of his fingers and a squirming torque of hips clad in skewed flannel. He pops halfway to upright on the support of an elbow, bare feet skimming linens, his T-shirt — Sonny's T-shirt — changing wrinkles as he twists to see—

Who the fuck?

His first thought, mortifying albeit short-lived, is of alcohol, some blackout of impossible magnitude and two decades' worth of insecurity manifested again in anonymous promiscuity, hideously timed to his first real opportunity at commitment. That idea is banished after an instant's rationalization. With a furrowed brow, a blink, he crawls backwards out from underneath the linens to the edge of the ponderous bed. The second thing he does is, of course, go and snag his gun.

One of them, that is. The weapon sits heavy in his hand as he squats light as a bird on the edge of the mattress, every line of his frame livewire with tension, his buzzed head ducking briefly to study the clothes this stranger is wearing. He's been around Evolved long enough to expect surprises, but those experiences go hand in hand with a certain degree of paranoia. The pistol ends up nose-down in Egyptian cotton, subtly hidden behind the line of his ankle. His heart doesn't come out of his throat. "Sonny?"

Sonny is still wearing just the boxers he was the night before. There's the discarded dress shirt and pants nearby. Nothing appears out of place, except, you know, that his appearance is all wrong.
At the sound of his name, the doc stirs, then rolls over onto his back. He slowly opens his eyes, blinks at the ceiling, scrubs at his face and then tilts his head to look at Teo. He studies the Italian and his perched, taut pose. Confusion knots the unfamiliar features.

"What? What is it?"

That. That was not his voice. At first he just looks confused, then a hand goes to his throat, then to the hair that should be a mass of curls. "What the…what the fuck?" If he really is someone trying to trick Teo, he's a good actor. He looks absolutely thrown and startled.

Past a certain level of competence, Teo is aware that the only desirable outcome of conflict is to make somebody dead. He isn't dead. Enlisting an actor this good to do— what? Doesn't make any sense. He relaxes fractionally, the razor-edged geometry of his shoulders finding a slightly more organic curve; the line of his shin stands out slightly less against the curve of his foot. He doesn't move a lot, otherwise, pallid eyes roving that familiar progression of sleep-padded reactions and personal tells.

"I — you —" his brow finds a deeper knit. "D-don't freak out too much, I'm… I'm sure these things happen. But you have the wrong face on, amico." The Glock angles further back, vanishing behind the alignment of his calf. He shifts forward on the balls of his feet, the fingers of his free hand curling against the urge to touch, verify, clarify.

Sonny stumbles out of bed quickly and goes for the light. Despite the semidarkness, he has no trouble finding the switch - which is further confirmation that he is who he should be. He then goes to the full length mirror on the closet door.

"Holy shit." A beat, "Holy shit." He said that already. "It's…it's….Mark Colwood. A lawyer I did some work on last night at the party. But why…?" He turns back around to face Teo. "This is fucking weird. It would take me hours of conscious effort to do this." He looks down at his hands, then reaches up to touch the top of his head.
By then, the gun is underneath the bed again and there's a Sicilian padding in, coming through the bathroom doorway out which Sonny is making his panicky eyes. Concern wins out over caution. Almost every fucking time.

Teo's brow is slightly furrowed from consternation or curiosity, his arms crossed over his chest and bare hands hidden from the imaginary nip of cold underneath his shirt-sleeves, shoulders up, chin low. He swings one foot up onto the counter, agile as a cat; pulls himself up to squat on its marble lip. The mirror shows Sonny his back, his pale irises reflecting the man's new face on him, miniaturized and tinted a wintry hue of blue. "Did it feel different?" he asks, chin on his forearms. "Last night?"

"I…I was so tired, I guess…I felt relaxed, kind of loose. But that's not how it usually feels. I usually have to focus on everything. I had this shitty headache and…" Sonny stops himself and turns back to blink at his reflection. "…I got the headache not long after I did the work on Mark. Jesus…" he reaches up to rub at his chin, then looks at the tattoo that's also been recreated faithfully. "I didn't even know he had a tattoo." He fingers a long scar on his chest. "He's married. I've never…" seen him naked, for the record.

"Do you think maybe…he's some kind of Evolved? Or is it…" He looks down at his hands, with a pinky that cocks to the right a little and is swollen at the second knuckle as if an old break didn't heal well. He purses his lips. "Fuck. I can't have this out of control. Not now."

Blunt fingertips grate on the insides of Teo's arms, hanging onto himself, not quite hugging, trying to determine how best to — offer comfort? Fix it? How? There are two Max Colwoods in Manhattan, now. Maybe. The bulk of the body turning in front of the mirror most certainly isn't the one he's only begun to test the texture and temperament of, and he doesn't know enough about metamorphs or anything to know what to do.

Teo bites his lip and stares, tactful as a box of hammers. And coincidentally fails to make the connection between the lawyer's being married and never having seen him naked.

"You— I could call him. You could get your assistant to call him. He might be. Or— it could be your gift douching around with something new. I know a girl who's just growing into hers now. She has a lot of— accidents," blinding herself in the mirror, burning holes through the walls, "new discoveries. Maybe you should try changing your voice back. See what happens?"

"It's actually easier to change my face than my voice." Sonny drops his hands to his side, then rolls his shoulders back. He closes his eyes and his face begins to twitch with concentration. It's perhaps a little surprising that the morphing begins almost immediately. There are brief fluctuations over his skin, a few ripples, then his appearance morphs seamlessly from that of Mark Colwood to his true appearance.

He pulls in a sharp breath and blinks to stare at his real face in the mirror. "…o…kay." That's his own voice too. But rather than look relieved, he looks troubled.

Some part of Teo feels awful. Probably the same part of him that feels cold, deprived of tactile companionship by better judgment. You don't coddle all over an Evolved a minute after new manifestations have whacked through control. Two minutes in, though…

Two minutes should be okay. Mumbling a curse, the younger man throws his hands out like a lasso, dragging Sonny — who's Sonny again — up against the flat of his chest, huffing a warm breath down on his shoulder. "It's fine," reassures the least reliable source on the planet. "It's kind of cool. You can borrow shapes now, right? Faces?

"Shapeshifting. That's handy. That's what this means." He twists his head to look at the good Doctor in the eye. Though he's too close to focus on, he's also close enough that Teo doesn't need to.

Sonny is still in a little bit of shock. He's pulled easily in, but it takes a second for him to relax and put his arms in response. He exhales a warm breath against Teo's chest and swallows. "It shouldn't have been that easy for me to change back," he murmurs. "But I could…I could feel my real shape. All I had to do was concentrate on it…yeah. It's not bad. I just have to figure out how to control it. I don't wanna go turning into my clients at random."

He bends his face and presses his lips against the curve of the young Italian's neck. "Can't believe I slept all night like that." His body tenses subtly, then there's a rough laugh. "At least I didn't turn into you or something." He reaches his hand up under Teo's borrowed shirt. His fingers curve slightly and he scratches in a gentle way, then flattens his palm to caress.

Wonderfully, handy is proportional to dangerous, the way they live. Already, Teo can think of a dozen applications for stolen faces; he assumes that assholes who like abductions and drugs that cause memory loss could think of a hundred more. A conversation for a different time, he knows: Sonny is not a stranger to discretion, nor to doing righteous things. That'll keep him out of trouble until it drowns him in it.

Unfortunately, the distinct awareness that he can't talk about it doesn't mean Teo doesn't think about it. He's a little too still, a little too quiet, despite the rocky pattern that overlays his breathing and the kiss pressed through Sonny's curls; doesn't manage to shake it off until he feels the hem of his shirt riding high, remembers the mirror behind him, the bruises across his back.

"You should be so lucky," he replies, little of the cheer in his voice false. He topples off the counter, haphazard, using Sonny like a disasterous pole-vault to the floor. His feet slap bare on tile and he leans into both a kiss and a stride toward the door at the same time. "Who do you want to be?"

Sonny has already tried to push bite marks and bruises out of his mind. He's fairly good at pretending things didn't happen. Perhaps a little too good. The silence and the sudden stride away has him a little concerned. He moves quickly up behind Teo and encircles him from behind.

"This…doesn't weird you out, does it? I mean, it must be kinda…strange for you, despite the fact you've always known I can…" His shoulders lift, then he slides into another subject. "Mmmgh. Did you still want to go to the zoo today? Did you get enough sleep?" He rests his chin on Teo's shoulder and closes his eyes.

When bathroom tiles give way to carpet floor, Teo stops walking and stops Sonny with him not withstanding the possibility that the circle of the other man's arms should unforseeably break from the impact. He looks at the bedroom and listens to the beat of someone else's breath on the side of his neck. "Maybe a little. Doesn't really fucking matter, though. I'll get used to it.

"I already think it's kind of cool." Blunt as head trauma. Sometimes it's for the better. "Never really understood why you didn't like the existential implication of your gift, or what you do. I don't see anything wrong with making things beautiful." Held, Teo… allows himself to be held, mostly. Reaches back with his hands, thumbing through black curls, glancing sidelong at Sonny's profile, back-lit by the bathroom. "You didn't," he says.

"It matters, man. I could avoid doing it in front of you." Or so Sonny hopes. That's the problem with new manifestations of power. Unpredictable. "Existential implication?" he chuckles and kisses the back of Teo's neck, at the top of his spine. "What do you mean?"

From the way his hands are roving, it's clear there's something he'd like to do before the go to the zoo. "Don't worry about my energy levels," he murmurs, lips vibrating against Teo's neck. "They're just fine."

Teo's neck — has a bite-mark on it, disguised by cloth now but not— well. There's an odd jittering of the nerves underneath the older man's mouth, an insectoid fluster in his stomach, worry mangled by lust. "Nnnnothing." Lie. Not a very good one, either, albeit not exceptionally meaningful.

Unable to clear his mind, he clears his throat instead, a rough, tangible tremor through the small bones of his spine. "You resent your vanity. 'N' I don't. 'S all. That's all I mean." As pertains to that particular subject, in any case. Other, less abstract concepts erode to the surface under the care of Sonny's hands and it's about seven seconds before the young thug is twisting around in his grasp to solicit a kiss, circumventing the clumsiness of his angle with an extra token of ferocity.

He hadn't done anything last night besides drowse, argue, and think too much about doing something. It shows. "Nope." Belated answer, growled through Sonny's hair. "Don't have to hide."

"I know I'm a vain bastard. And yes, I feel kind of shitty about it." Sonny returns the kiss. He'll keep his blinders firmly in place and do his best to ignore the signs that another man has ravished his…well, whatever definition or label you could give their relationship. Lover? Companion? Boyfriend? It's his turn now. "Wait. You don't resent my vanity, or you're not vain?" he chuckles, partly with lust, partially with an odd bit of playfulness.

The doc's hands push roughly back against Teo in a series of shoves to traverse the distance between door and bed. He pulls back long enough that the hunger in his eyes is evident. Time for warm affection is over. Time to do something he's been looking forward to since before Teo's brush with death.

'Boyfriend' seems oddly high school, but it's served better than any of its alternatives in Teo's mental lexicon so far. He swings his legs forward without bending his knees, allowing himself to be bullied toward the bed, an equally playful parody of laziness not to be mistaken for reticence. "I don't resent yours, Sala," he replies, in a scrape of syllables through teeth that Sonny may or may not recognize as English. "I'm vain as fuck."

Which is at odds with how much he resents wearing his father's face, but what can you do? Through some accident of push and pull, they finally end up face to face. Teo's palms flatten on the other man's shoulder-blades, spread to starfish, fingers greedy to absorb every available inch of contact; he pushes them down into the concave of Sonny's back until his fingers pry underneath the hem of boxers.

"We still going to the zoo?" he inquires, a little more coherently.

"Please," Sonny murmurs, "I've met vain bastards and you're not one of them." The fact that Teo hasn't asked him to tweak anything is how he came to that conclusion. Conversation at this point only serves as something to pass the time as what clothing they're both wearing gets taken care of. He shoves Teo firmly down and onto the bed and moves atop him a second later. He leans close, kisses up his neck, nips his earlobe gently and then whispers, "After."

Time passes.

By now, the seals have eaten their morning fish and the morning chaos of aviary birds is over. It isn't too late to go, but it isn't as early as Teo wanted to. They don't.

He's memorized the ceiling. It's very plain. Probably means Sonny's going to find writing on it, at some point. Until then, however, the ordinarily restless kid from Sicily is breathing even on the mattress beside him. Linens are tended over his knee, bent toward the ceiling, and his foot is tucked underneath one of Sonny's calves, the weight of shin and muscle weight providing a firm foundation that prevents Teo's leg from falling over. There's yogurt liquefying in the bowls on the nightstand under the curls of discarded fruit peels.

His shorn skull makes a rasping noise against Egyptian cotton. "So you're going to be like Batman."

Sonny has the peels of a mandarin on his chest. He chuckles as he pulls off a segment and pops it into his mouth. He tilts his head and grins at Teo. "Batman? Maybe. If you replace fighting crime with sewing wounds. And I'm not going to be doing it in any nipple-y latex suit," a beat, then an amused, "Sorry. Hate to disappoint." He tugs off another segment and offers it up to Teo's lips, Roman-style. "I hate to go through all that bother, y'know. But it would be safer for everyone. Can your friend set me up with real medical credentials under a new name?"

"Yeah. I mean, I guess it depends on how in-depth you need it to be," Teo muses aloud, the mumble of his mouth bumping into the lobe of citrus until he takes enough pause to open his jaws. He squishes fruit between his molars, polite enough to close his lips before juice stings the linens with orange dots. "If you need letters of recommendation from deceased med school professors or Deans of Medicine, that could take a little time.

"But if it's a money trail, government-recognized ID, and and your name in a couple databases… I hope you aren't planning to do something that needs to survive a lot of backgrounds checks." His brow furrows at this notion. Ghost that he's become.

"I doubt anyone's going to look too closely at medical credentials if someone's willing to work at a free clinic." Sonny chews an orange wedge thoughtfully. "They wouldn't want to find anything wrong with them. They're desperate for people." And he could never go down as Doctor Bianco. For one, he'd get people hounding him for cosmetic procedures. For two, he wouldn't be safe. Some kid with misplaced anger might shiv him in the gut.

The doc moves the orange peel aside to join a slowly growing pile. Those things are addictive, man. "I'm gonna cut back on my clinic hours permanently. Don't care how much the socialites yell and scream. There're more important things to do than nosejobs."

Not like Sonny's running out of money anytime soon. That makes sense. Why not? Helping those who need it. It— brings a knot to Teo's brow, when he puts phrase and phrase together. A brusque shove of his heel into the mattress, and he rolls onto his side, pillowing his head on the good Doctor's bicep. "This isn't just Ferrymen shit, is it?" he asks, recognizable wonderment etched across his angular features. As ever, the curse word is spoken in as neutral a tone as stuff or issues. "I— you're talking about doing something else.

"More." It's hard to say whether Teo's surprise broaches the line to disconcertment or not.

Sonny stares up at the dull ceiling. He exhales through his nose, then nods slowly. "Yeah." Then, "I'm tired of sitting on my hands. Whatever you did. Whatever all of you did, it made a difference. I'm tired of being passive." His jaw works in a slow, thoughtful motion. "There's…a clinic near the trailer farm that badly needs doctors. I've been sending anonymous donations, but it isn't enough."

There is a twitch in the leg that Teo's now laced flat through the other man's thigh and knee, like a running reflex aborted mid-synapse. While he's always appreciated that the older man knows what he does for a living, or close enough, and enjoys his approval and ideological agreement, it's a thing apart to see the whole Batman metaphor threatening manifest in all the ways that matter. Sculpted nipple armor markedly does not. "We killed and blew up a bunch of people because they were going to commit mass murder.

"That is somebody else's fucking job — and we only did it because they weren't cashing in their fucking cluepons. We should've been doing something else. Can't you—" his mouth finds a thinner line; his gaze falls, already knowing how this sounds even before he says it. "Do some more fund-raisers or something?"

"I'm planning on doing that too," from the way Sonny says this, he's thought a lot about it. "I've been doing research on some pro-Evolved group. I'm trying to find the most reputable one to ally myself with." He rubs his forehead. "But it's not enough."

He rolls over and props himself up with his elbow. A hand reaches out to caress Teo's jaw. He smiles a small, almost sad sort of smile. "I have to do this. I have to do something worthwhile with my life."

Severity is an odd look for Teo, which is probably why that expression wrinkles to more annoyance the next moment; the sort that Hana would easily have identified as childish. In running Phoenix, he makes a policy of keeping his nose out of their lives. To the point of error, according to some, who want more of a family than he honestly cares to — is capable of providing. It's different with Sonny, a little. Whether because they're living together or because they're together, he couldn't say. His expression darkens further, realizing that—

Allying himself with a some pro-Evolved group. He'd regret mentioning fund-raisers, except Sonny's thought a lot about it. "That's fucking dangerous, you know," he points out, idiotically, his jaw grinding palpably in the bracket of the other man's hand.

"Yeah. And so's walking down the street these days," Sonny looks Teo in the eye. His mind is made up. "I'm doing this, one way or another. There's any number of ways this city could kill me. I'd rather be doing something useful than lounging around up here while other people risk their lives to try and make things less shitty." People like the guy whose face he's touching right now. This is the trickle-down effect of how useless he felt leading up to the unknown armageddon.

More annoyance. The annoyance, it compounds, multiplies, fills Teo's lungs with droning locusts and enough desert heat to have killed everything else. "You're just a silly boy trying to fold your PhD into an origami soapbox.

"There's a reason why you have armored limos and cabs, and I'm completely wasting my time, but as long as I have time to waste—" He doesn't even know why that proto-argument collapsed inward on itself. It's very annoying. He isn't supposed to be smart enough to pick his battles. He sighs with enough force to puff his cheeks out, looks elsewhere. "I'll have to move out or something. You'll have paparazzi crawling all over your shit. Maybe helicopter assassins too."

You're being dramatic," says Sonny dully. "The paparazzi have better things to worry about. Or rather, they have more superficial things to worry about than who I speak up against. Teo…I can do something. People might listen to me. Otherwise people're going to just keep turning on the Evolved. And this shit will get worse and worse." He grits his teeth and sighs.

"Maybe you should move out. Like I said. We'll find an apartment. My other identity needs an address anyway." His throat tightens. Confronted with their issue again. The elephant in the room keeps lifting its trunk. "Those…people. That you see. What do they give you?" That he can't? Those three words are not spoken, but it's implied by his tone.

So what if Teo is being dramatic! "I'm not wrong." Fundamentally. He isn't the one planning to strut around on camera and headlines talking about how he's going to change the world, and by the way, his home address is publically accessible and he's destabilizing the government in his free time by being party to terrorists and— "If people listen to you, so will the fucking paparazzi. There's a pattern of causation to this stuff. Goddamn muck-rakers. And helicopter assassins." His toe weaves irritable patterns in the empty air.

And then there's a mild start when Teo remembers, realizes again, that he might have just been about to do that. Leave. Permanently. The startle sinks into a weight of lead when amiable discussion circles into a question that seems laced with razor wire and sharp stones. "I… Lo— noth—" He breathes in twice, about ten seconds apart, like he's generating breath to answer with, but none come; empty syllables, the best approximation for an honest answer.

Which the question so badly deserves. The air in his lungs has gone quiet, quiescent, and cold. "'S not like that. They — take — things away, and I don't…" So many languages, so much to say. Shit happens. "I'm sorry, you know." Pointlessly, he turns his head, hides half his face in the hemisphere of Sonny's arm, sealing his eyes with fringy lids and the bulk of bicep, kisses the large vein under thinner skin.

"And you're not a target? Homeland Security isn't after you?" Sonny sighs again and rubs at his cheek. "I have a right to risk my life, same as you do. And I think this is something worth risking it over. Besides…" he twitches a smile. "Even if my father disowned me over this, he'd never stop protecting me." And he is the mayor.

As for other issues. He pinches his eyes shut and exhales slowly, suddenly wishing he'd never asked that question. He doesn't really want to know what the honest answer might be. "Why would you want to have anything taken away?" he murmurs, "I'm…trying to understand. I mean, I always had meaningless flings because…because I…" he has difficulty getting the words out, "…because I had nothing else." He rubs his forehead, then down his cheek. He swallows the lump in his throat. "Just…forget it. Forget…that I asked." He's gone a bit flushed, embarrassment.

Harry is the Mayor— for now. Teo doesn't add that peevishly paranoid notion aloud, Exhibit Q in an endless, revolving catalogue of worst case scenarios. Possibly, his priorities are all fucked up now. Or Sonny's are. Anyway, death seems dwarfed by the chilly, fungal shadow cast down by this line of questioning. After a moment, it makes Teo hackle, as an Italian is wont to do.

Not at Sonny, but at the difference in temperature, however imaginary or metaphorical; he pulls closer, an arm closing around the other man's waist, dragging his shoulder up and his head. He kisses Sonny's forehead, cheek, as if the hand he'd passed over there had left tracks of abrasion. Predictably, he smells like oranges. "Said I think about it," he reminds, pale eyes searching out Sonny's. "I will. Figure it out."

For the first part of Teo's motions, Sonny avoids eye contact. There he goes, feeling stupid again. Feeling ashamed for expecting things beyond the scope of their original terms. For feeling more than the other seems to.

Predictably, it takes some effort for Teo to find that eye contact. But when he does, a small, fluttery smile appears, then darts off just as quickly. "Yeah…yeah I know, T." Rather than turn away and make the awkwardness highly obvious, he closes his eyes instead.

There's something so commonplace about being scared to kiss a pretty person that it's just pathetic. Teo watches his lover — boyfriend — companion's face in the neutral light diffused through blinds and the deepening angle of the sun somewhere up there in the sky. They're new yet. The two of them. Feeling stupid comes parcel of being new to things. Wobbling around on some narrow ledge, the gravitational pull of taking this and other blessings at face-value whistling down one side, two decades of pathological terror and guilt a sheer wall behind.

"I've figured you out," he decides, after a moment. "You're not brave, you're fearless. You d'no what it's like yet, principessa." The voice on the other side of Sonny's eyelids sounds like it's smiling at first, but there's no curve to the mouth Teo presses to the corners of his eyes, one by one until all four are crossd, left to right.

"Or maybe I'm just an idiot," murmurs Sonny. An idiot in more than just politics, perhaps? Those words are certainly coated with shades of self-deprecation. He starts to nuzzle at Teo's proximity, then turns his head and huffs gently. "But at least I'd be an idiot trying to do shit instead of continuing on like the world isn't falling apart around me. Money only insulates for so long." And, yes, daddy won't be Mayor forever. A few more years and he's out of office one way or another.

They all start out like idiots. Then some girl gets shot or a redhead happens and then everything goes to Hell and you get stuck grappling with overelaborate metaphors that basically just mean you too scared to behave like a kind and rational human being. Teo frowns when the nuzzling gives way to Sonny's face turned away.

"It's a safety net too, I guess," he answers. "If things don't work out and you get tired of it, you can run away and find a nude beach in… fuckin'… Brazil."

They're talking about politics. They aren't talking about politics. Teo puts his nose in Sonny's ear and follows the curve of the other man's brow with a gentle thumb and forefinger, circling around to eyelids. Which he then attempts, in a fashion as obnoxious but inscrutably gentle as he'd once run around catching moths and dragonflies, to pry open.

As much as he wants to enjoy the gentle touches and somewhat strange…prying open of eyelids, Sonny just feels…reminded of that damn elephant. He needs time like before, to try and forget about it, to ignore it once more. He does open his eyes, but eye contact remains fleeting. He reaches up to catch the hand doing the prying work to hold it and squeeze it. He attempts another little smile, but it's troubled.

"I could run. But you can only run for so long too. Eventually it all catches up to you and you've gotta face it. I'd rather face things now. Maybe I can be useful for once." Bitterness, but at himself, then a rough chuckle. "Be the surgeon I actually wanted to be instead of the sculptor I've become."

To Teo, that all sounds more like a curse of damnation to those who've already done things Homeland Security could inculpate them for, rather than an excuse to experiment with activism. While no one's asking him, however, he shuts the Hell up this once. Lets his hand be taken away and pressed between Sonny's fingers, round calluses and diminutive scars grating the grain of smoother hands. He's about to say something when he decides not to.

"Or a superhero, eh?" His wrist torques in the other man's grasp, pulls free; he lets his weight essay to the side, drops his head back onto the pillows and his shoulders to the mattress. "A sculptor never hurt anybody fucking up whatever he was working on," he says, turning his head to exchange blank stares with the television.


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February 7th: Common Sense Is Debateable
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