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What, was "Rudy" on cable last night?

. . . Yes.

Eliot Spencer vdistinctive
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75 Godiva Street, Monday morning
Eliot didn't sleep nearly as much as Parker and Hardison did, so he was pretty used to being up before they were, getting coffee ready and sorting through his fridge for what to make for breakfast. He'd've been perfectly happy to stay in bed and just stare at his partners and make sure they were still there, but whatever the aliens had been using to sustain them all over the week hadn't really been much more than minimal, and Eliot was pretty sure he wasn't the only one who'd be waking up today starving.

He may have stuck comms on everyone so he could still hear them the whole time, though.

It was weird being in his kitchen without Val sitting at his feet in her eternally frustrated hope for scraps (eternally frustrated from him, anyway, he was pretty sure she still did it because Hardison and Parker were sneaking her things), but Kathy had texted the night before to let him know that her little sister had been taking care of the puppy, and that Kathy was going to keep her in the dorms for one more night. Considering how much time he and the others had spent yesterday in constant physical contact, Eliot could guess why Kathy wanted to keep a nice, warm, happy puppy around for the night, so he didn't insist. He was used to getting shot at and nearly killed, after all, and what had happened in that sim --

Eliot's hand spasmed around his knife and he dropped in to the cutting board and stepped back, leaning his weight into his hands on the counter and just breathing through it as the image of Kathy silhouetted in the doorway ran through his head. He kept his head down a moment longer once the scene finished playing out in his memory, then straightened up, stretched his fingers, and got back to chopping.

He'd have to watch out for that for a little while.

[ooc: for those in the house and the one stopping by -- and anyone else who might decide to drop in and visit. Note: linked thread contains violence and simulated death.]

Kathy had 100% needed Val last night. Flick hadn't been in the room at all and spending a night in a completely empty room would have been unbearable. She probably would have ended up crashing on a common room or hitting up one of her friends with a single, just to have someone else there. But Val was the best of all possible companions--she hadn't complained when Kathy had cried, just given her puppy kisses until her tears dried. She'd also been warm and happy to cuddle, just pleased to be with a familiar person and given all the pets and attention she could handle.

There were times when Kathy really, really wished she could get a pet. A dog or a cat of her very own would be well-appreciated right now.

She'd gone back to her room after classes were over for the day, taken Val for a very long walk, and then eventually made her way over to Eliot's place on Godiva when she couldn't in good conscious draw out returning Val any longer.

Val pulled her around to the back and over to a sliding glass door. Through it, she could see Eliot puttering around the kitchen, looking thoroughly domestic. Smiling a little, she tapped lightly on the glass to get his attention.

Eliot looked up, and his heart rate leaped when he saw Kathy silhouetted in the doorway. Jesus, this kid was going to be the death of him.

He didn't do more than stiffen momentarily as an outward sign -- he was far too used to these sorts of moments -- and headed over to open the door. "Hey." He smiled and gestured for Kathy to come in. Val was already bounding into the kitchen to sniff at absolutely everything. "You doing alright?"

"Hi," Kathy said, giving him another small smile and following Val in. "I hope you don't mind that I didn't bring her over right away last night. Once I got back to my dorm, I was pretty much done in."

She thought about giving Eliot a bright smile and assuring him she was fine, but she was pretty sure he'd see right through that. So instead she skipped around the question and hoped he wouldn't notice--or that her non-answer was answer enough.

How did you say, I dunno, I died but it's hardly been the first time or Well, it wasn't really real, so I feel stupid for letting it bother me?


"I figured," Eliot said, crouching down to give the puppy a thorough welcoming rub-down. "Val was probably just as happy with whatever familiar face she could get." And having a puppy around to interrupt what he and the others had gotten up to last night could have been . . . awkward. "You want something to drink? I could get some tea going."

Not whisky. Eliot would not be facilitating that again.

And yeah, he noticed her lack of answer. And was willing to respect her dodge for the moment.

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Hearing voices in the kitchen, Hardison made sure to put boxers on before padding out of the bedroom. It might be Eliot talking to himself, or Val, or a random vampire who'd crashed in his attic for all he knew. "Hey," he said, coming out to press a kiss to the back of Eliot's neck. "Whatcha makin'?"

Mmmm. Eliot could absolutely get used to that kind of morning greeting. He leaned back a little against Hardison's chest. "Hashbrowns, bacon, french toast, maybe some sausages. . . ." Everything, Hardison. He was making everything. "And maybe some fruit to balance it all out."

"Yeah, well, what are you and Parker s'posed to eat?" he teased, wrapping his arms around Eliot's waist. He debated tucking Eliot's head under his chin, but decided he didn't want to turn this into an argument quite yet. "I was gonna throw a hissy when I woke up an' saw you'd abandoned the bed, but smellin' all this means you're forgiven."

Also, he'd noticed the comms and smiled, understanding perfectly.

Trying to tuck Eliot's head under his chin would get Hardison grumpily and very gently headbutted. No one wanted that first thing.

"Well, you know. What kind of boyfriend would I be if I didn't make sure everyone kept their strength up?" He held up his hand before Hardison could respond. "Don't get excited. I'm just tryin' it out."

Definitely not first thing. But later? Oh hell yeah would be be annoying Eliot with this later. It was how they bonded.

"I didn't say nothin'," Hardison said, though his grin rivaled the sunshine outdoors. "Not a damn thing."

Boooooooooooooooyfriend. Because Eliot looooooooooooved them.

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"Why are we out of bed?" Parker questioned, yawning, then sniffed the air. "Never mind, question answered." She was wearing one of Eliot's T-shirts. And his boxers as well.

"Look, we match!"

"Hey, mama," Hardison said, holding his arms out for a hug. "Lookin' good, yo."

Parker meandered over to hug him, burying her face in his shoulder. Hardison-smell. Reassuring. Warm. Nice. Almost as yummy as money-smell, and much more promising. "I had a dream we were in a Renaissance fair and someone asked me if I were a duck or a witch, and you weren't there to ask what the right answer was."

"If you weighed as much as a duck, then you might be a witch," Hardison said, with a smile. He dropped a kiss on her cheek--and then another one for the other side. Because he liked things being even and not because her skin was soft and smelled good. "I always have the right answer for you."

And then nibbled her ear because...reasons. "Did you wanna go to a Renn Faire?" Cause he could make that happen.

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Eliot took in her outfit with a smile. "Darlin', you're killin' me here."

"Why?" Parker turned to him with a grin, then sashayed over to sniff at the food. "I could take off the shirt so we match more, if you want." But if it got chilly, she was using the guys as space heaters.

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