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Story Notes:
This is completely off Canon for Tea and Miltancy !!
It had been a long day, and Matty had feasted well, and drunk more than he perhaps intended, his irritation with Susie now faded to a sibling's respect for a trick well played. He had been nursing a late night drink for some time, trying to decide if he wanted to finish it and get another, when Tristan returned to the room quite suddenly, and sat down beside him, nursing his own glass, and saying nothing bar a brief hello.

Matty felt a spark run through him, that buzz of alertness, adrenaline, that feeling that he kept trying to fool himself was an illusion, a fuzziness that hit him now whenever Tristan was nearby. The very fact of him being in the room was hard enough to ignore, but now, he was sitting beside him, his indefinable smell and sound tantalizingly close. How could a man smell of sheet music, and pianos? Violin resin, and somehow a slight whiff of chalk, despite the fact that he hadn't been near a school room for days. Brandy and the slight sweetness of christmas itself mixed with Tristan's own smell, and Matty knew all at once that he had had too much, that he was not sufficiently in control of his emotions to be this close to Denny.

He ought to remove himself, go to bed, he wouldn't be able to hide his feelings after this much wine and brandy. Yet he stayed, unable to make himself break the spell, unwilling to leave this tiny bit of intimacy so soon. He tried to focus on something else, to stop his mind from wandering, his senses from telling him to move even closer. There was no way that he could do that, despite the aching of his body, the buzzing of his brain. He was paralysed by fact, a fact he was trying to ignore- that Tristan had come back to be here with him, had sat down so close and not said anything yet. After all, his drunken brain continued, Denny could be trying to send a message, after all the room was empty, there were many other chairs to chose.

Matty felt himself automatically wanting to check the emotional weather on Tristan's face, but torn between needing to know if his instincts were playing tricks on him, and not wanting to lose the tiny hope he had, this warm feeling of closeness. He couldn't trust that the longing he felt wouldn't show, and much as he wanted his feelings to be right, he was depressingly sure that they weren't, that Tristan wanted only friendship.

He searched his mind in panic for a topic of conversation that was sufficiently light, but couldn't make his voice begin anything. The companionable silence between them, Tristan's closeness, the family feeling of the day. They all combined to make Matty feel a longing he had done his best to ignore, had pushed a long way back in his mind.

He had to switch his point of gaze, and tipped his head back, briefly looking upwards, then colouring. He was sitting beneath the mistletoe. All his joking, all the banter through the day, and now, here he was, alone, below the mistletoe and beside the one person he would have most wanted to kiss. He quickly looked away in confusion, but his movements appeared to have woken Tristan from being so deep in thought, and he looked up, coloured himself, and obviously registered the position they were in. Matty was determinedly looking elsewhere, so only sensed the fact, he didn't dare look at his friend. He felt uncontrollably drunk and stone cold sober all at the same time. This was dangerous, and he needed to establish a safer situation, but he just couldn't bring himself to do so. This should be the point where Tristan got up and left, or sat forward at least, made the gap between them larger. Made a comment about the lateness of the hour, stood up to stretch, and say goodnight. This should be the point that one of them did that.

There wasn't a rush of cold air, an awkward collection of words. There wasn't a clearing of a throat, a deepening of the voice, subconscious projection of more masculinity to send a message. All there was, was a pause, a sense of that warmth, that smell getting nearer, and then lips, soft and gentle on his cheek. Hair brushing against his face and a rush of feelings too complicated to explain. Matty wanted to turn his mouth, change the peck to more, but the shock was almost too much, then the face was gone, the warm body next to him had left, as if catapulted away.



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