Word Count: 4.272
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That said, no copyright-infringement intended; none of the characters used in this story are mine and I do not claim to own them.
Summary: It starts on a Tuesday afternoon.
Alex says something ridiculous, something that’s meant to brighten up the mood (now that over a week’s passed, he doesn’t even remember what it was), and everything goes downhill from there.
Author's Note: Yes, this is RPF, I admit. The song that inspired me to write this would be 'One week' by the Barenaked Ladies; it's a really awesome song. Once again, a huge thank-you goes to my darling aboutademongirl for taking the time to beta this and straightening out everything that sounded wrong. ♥
It starts on a Tuesday afternoon.
Alex says something ridiculous, something that’s meant to brighten up the mood (now that over a week’s passed, he doesn’t even remember what it was), and everything goes downhill from there.
Stark’s face closes up and he narrows his eyes, turning his whole body towards Alex. He’s in full shooting gear: MOPP suit, SAW in hand, his Kevlar secure on his head. Stark does some weird flailing motion, before grinding out between his teeth, “You’re crazy.” He storms away, his heavily booted feet whirling up sand and dust all around him, and Alex finds it hard to bite back the laughter that is bubbling up in his throat.
It’s not that he finds the fact that Stark seems really fucking pissed funny; it’s just that he looks kind of amusing when he is.
(The funny thing is, Alex can’t remember the right word to describe the way Stark moved until he hears Eric Ladin telling the other guys about it later on; Eric describes it as a “flailing chicken”.)
The director, Simon Cellan Jones, looks at Alex and shakes his head. “Fucking great,” he sighs, taking off his baseball cap to rake his fingers through his hair. “Now what?”
Alex shrugs, dropping the SAW they handed him in the same second, and follows Sands. It’s not hard to find him; there are guys rushing up to him from all corners of the set, asking him just what the fuck happened, because Stark stormed past them, looking like he wanted to throttle a certain somebody, the second he comes within shouting distance.
He waves them off, calling out over his shoulder as he picks up his pace to catch up with Stark, “I’ve got no idea, catch you later!”
Are you sure about that? a voice in the back of his head asks. Everybody’s been feeling rough the past few days, homes, and you just made it worse.
It kind of freaks him out; the voice sounds a fucking lot like PJ Ransone, and what the fuck is that guy doing in his head, anyway?
Alex shakes his head and pulls a face. There are just some lines that should not be crossed, and this is one of them.
Thanks to his long legs (bless both his mama and his papa for that, and maybe the whole Swedish population, because everybody is so fucking tall), catching up with Stark doesn’t take him long, and Alex stops him with a hand on his shoulder.
Stark whirls around to him, a sour look on his face. Before Alex has a chance to explain, to apologize, Stark is cocking his head to the side, before stating, “I’m angry.”
No shit, Sherlock, the voice in Alex’s head says again.
Alex waves his hand, as if trying to shoo away a fly, and Stark huffs out an annoyed sigh before walking away, his fists still clenched by his sides.
Alex is aware he must look like a complete idiot, the way he’s standing there with his shoulders slightly slumped forward, his head – with the Kevlar still on it – ducked, hands still raised in some sort of apologetic gesture.
That doesn’t stop him from quietly mumbling, “I’m sorry?”
He stays there for a good five minutes, just waiting—waiting for Stark to come back and tell him he was just joking, but it looks an awful lot like this is the last thing Stark has planned, when he walks into some empty-looking trailer, slamming the door shut behind him.
Alex rubs his eyes and pinches the bridge of his nose, but since that doesn’t make Stark come back either, he shrugs in defeat, before walking back to the set.
PJ joins him somewhere along the way, resting his hand on Alex’s back, in a sympathetic gesture. “You fucked up big time there, homes,” he points out, his voice carrying the same sympathy his hand does.
“No shit,” Alex mumbles, before standing in front of the camera again.
“Action!” Simon shouts, and Alex films his scenes, pretending it doesn’t both worry and amuse him how mad Stark is. Alex isn’t one to enjoy the misfortune of others, but there is just something so highly amusing about Stark when he gets angry, that he simply can’t help himself.
Two days later is their free day off, and nobody would thinks about declining, when Wilson Bethel suggests they all meet up in his little bungalow and have a few beers.
(Looking back, Alex should’ve known that ‘a few beers’ translate to ‘at least five beers, a whiskey and doing Tequila body shots’.)
There have only been a few times in his life that Alex has done body shots, and he really doesn’t mind doing them, but the person he wants to do them on isn’t exactly up for it, judging by the angry glare and the vehement shaking of their head when asked by somebody else.
“C’mon, Stark, it’s fun!” PJ whines, his arm around Stark’s shoulders, as he pats him repeatedly on the chest.
It doesn’t matter that PJ’s smaller than all of them; somehow he always manages to do things like this — get close enough to them to pat their backs, chests and arms, like he’s just as tall as them.
“Thanks, but no thanks, PJ.” Stark forces a smile on his face, all tight-lipped and showing no teeth, as he declines as politely as he can without throwing a fit.
Alex has been watching this for a while, never quite giving up the hope of Stark being won over; he’s not stupid, after all, and if Stark doesn’t mind offering his body for shots, Alex doesn’t mind licking salt and Tequila off of Stark.
When Stark gets up to use the toilet, Alex realizes that his bladder’s been impossibly full for a few hours now, and when he sees Stark leaving the bathroom again, he gets up and walks over to it.
Stark twists his upper body out of the way, avoiding physical confrontation with Alex, but Alex leans in and mumbles, “Get your act together, and then come back and see me, all right?”
If looks could kill, Alex would drop to the floor in convulsions, foam around his mouth, before dying a very painful death, judging by the look on Stark’s face.
Alex can see Stark chewing on the inside of his cheek as he waits for Stark to punch him in the face, but instead, Stark turns his head and walks back to his table, his whole body tense.
When Alex is done with his main goal in the bathroom, he stands in front of the mirror as he washes his hands.
He’s tall, always has been (back in Junior High, he was the tallest kid in his class), and even here, on the Generation Kill set, he’s the tallest.
There are only a few guys who are almost as tall as him, one of them being Stark. When Alex closes his eyes and concentrates, he still feels the tingling feeling of Stark’s breath on his chest when he rests his head on Alex’s shoulder, his face fitting perfectly into the crook of Alex’s neck.
He feels Stark’s hand curling around his hipbone, feels Stark’s skin beneath the tips of his fingers and hears him chuckling lightly, when he rubs his fingers over a particularly ticklish skin on Stark’s belly.
When he hears somebody rapping their knuckles against the bathroom door, Alex blinks, trying to shake his head free of those thoughts.
“You fall asleep in there?” He hears Rey Valentin asking through the door, sounding like he’s in desperate need of the bathroom.
“I’ll be out in a few seconds!” Alex calls out. Looking at himself in the mirror one last time, he turns off the water and dries his hands, before unlocking the door he doesn’t even remember locking.
“Sorry,” he mutters as he passes Rey, who immediately rushes into the bathroom, the buckle of his belt already open as he slams the door shut behind him.
Everything quiets down after this, and, one after the other, the guys start leaving. Around 2 a.m., it’s only Alex, Stark, PJ, and some of the other guys, and since the three of them, along with Billy Lush, live practically next to each other, they decide that going together is the best for them.
(“I don’t think Simon would like it if any of us got arrested because our drunk asses couldn’t control themselves!” PJ states as he gets up, rubbing his hands on his thighs.)
They walk to the front door, followed by Wilson, who claims he’s just “making sure they don’t steal anything”, but Alex knows he just wants to find out whether Stark and Alex will make up, or if they’re going to “continue behaving like an old married couple”, like Rich McDonald put it earlier.
“Don’t you guys wanna make up?” PJ asks him in a low voice, looking over at Stark meaningfully. Alex knows that, if it weren’t useless anyway, PJ would offer to play relationship therapist, but since his own relationship was fucked to hell and back just about two weeks ago, PJ doesn’t bother.
Alex shrugs, answers, “I don’t know,” in the same low voice before touching Stark’s back to gently push him out of the way, so he can grab his own jacket. It’s not his fault Stark is standing in the way, and besides, Alex figures, doing it like this is better than talking to Stark, judging by the look he gave him earlier when Alex dared to open his mouth. Or maybe it just has something to do with what he said?
At least, that’s what he thinks.
There’s a blur of motion and then Alex is being tackled to the ground, knees rubbing over Wilson’s floor, as he’s trying to figure out just what the fuck happened and what is going on.
He makes a surprised noise in the back of his throat and starts fighting back, catching a glimpse of Stark’s face, scrunched up in anger, before Stark manages to pin him down, his knee on Alex’s chest.
“Don’t you fucking touch me!” Stark hisses, his hands fisted in Alex’s t-shirt. He’s shivering with anger, Alex notes as he wraps his hands ever so gently around Stark’s wrists, prying him off and getting up to his feet.
He offers Stark his hand to help him up, but instead, Stark snorts bitterly, his lips forming a perfect pout as he struggles to get to rise.
Once again, Alex finds it hard to suppress the smile that’s forcing its way onto his face, and when Stark’s eyebrows draw together in anger, he knows he failed. “Fuck you,” Stark grinds out between his teeth, before walking out, almost ripping his jacket at the seams as he’s struggling to put it on.
Wilson, Billy and PJ just stare at Alex as he bends down to touch his sore knees, huffing at the knowledge of having rug burns for at least a week.
When he straightens, towering over them again, they’re still staring, although PJ’s moved to stand closer to him. “Are you all right?” PJ asks, that shit-eating grin of his clearly visible.
“Yeah,” Alex sighs, rubbing his hand over his cropped-short hair. It’s weird like this; he’s still not used to having it this short. He shrugs, pulling on his jacket, then he turns around and opens his mouth, before closing it again, not even sure what to say.
He settles for, “I didn’t know he’d react like that.”
All three of the guys nod understandingly, before walking him out the door. Alex can see Stark, although he’s already put some distance between them. Hell, maybe it’s for the best.
When they reach their bungalows, Stark is still standing outside, struggling with his key. Not that he really knows, but Alex’s guessing Stark’s still so angry, he can barely stick the key into the hole and twist it.
“Hey, Stark! It’s like fucking: stick it in, twist a bit, and a whole new world opens up for ya!” Billy calls out, trademark smirk on his face.
Stark glares at him, the expression on his face turning even grimmer when both Alex and PJ begin chuckling.
“Want me to help you?” Alex offers, standing in front of his own bungalow for a few minutes, as he watches Stark become even more frustrated. Billy and PJ have both gone inside already, probably to spare Stark any more humiliation, and Alex can’t say he minds.
Stark neither accepts this offer nor declines it, so Alex walks a few steps and stops when he’s standing only a few feet away from Stark.
“C’mon,” Alex says quietly, holding his hand out for Stark’s key.
Stark huffs, and then hands over the key. Standing there, he quietly glares at Alex, watching as the taller man unlocks the door before, pushing it open.
Alex has just opened his mouth to wish Stark a good night, or anything else like that, when Stark snatches the key out of his hands, slips into his bungalow and slams the door shut.
“Good night, I guess?” Alex offers, waving ‘good night’ at the door, before walking into his own bungalow.
Should’ve apologized, homes. Maybe he would’ve let you in for some angry make-up sex! The voice in the back of his head again.
“Right,” Alex answers, it as he’s unbuttoning his shirt. There’s a bruise on his chest, still red, with the slightest hint of blue; probably the punch Stark got in when he wrestled Alex to the floor.
He touches the tips of two fingers to it, flinching at the pain. Funny, he hadn’t even felt the punch, but now he feels it twice as much.
“Fuck.” Letting out a heavy sigh, Alex drops into his bed, falling asleep almost immediately.
The next two days of filming almost turn out to be a disaster. All of them claim to be professional actors (most of the time it’s jokingly, Alex won’t deny that), but nobody’s able to act professional enough when Stark isn’t talking to Alex, which really fucking sucks, especially when the two of them have to film scenes together.
They dance around this subject, because nobody wants to risk Stark getting even more pissed off, but everybody wants to know what’s going on.
Alex shrugs whenever somebody asks him. It’s not like he doesn’t want to talk about what happened, it’s just that he doesn’t remember. His brain probably categorized it as ’silly incident, not worthy of remembering what you said’, and no matter how hard he tries to remember it, Alex can’t.
He tries to ask extras, camera people and everybody else who had happened to be there when this whole clusterfuck happened, but nobody remembers it. Either because they agree with his brain – it was silly – or because they weren’t close enough to understand him at the time.
So Stark still continues to be angry, and Alex is still as clueless as he was two days ago.
During their lunch break, which all of them spend together, Alex, sitting in a corner, unbothered for once, realizes it wasn’t his fault.
These past few days, everyone has been quite aggravated those last few days, and usually Stark gets his humor, no matter what Alex says. Sure, maybe he picked the wrong moment, but Stark didn’t really need to flip out like he did.
And it’s not Alex’s fault.
Stark seems to have come to that realization, too, judging by how both of his eyebrows shoot up when Rudy flops down next to him, asking him just why he’s mad at Alex, anyway.
Squinting, Alex tries to read Stark’s lips, and right in the moment when he answers, everybody around them seems to quiet down—and Alex is able to understand what Stark says.
“I don’t…” he pauses, chewing on his index finger for several seconds, before picking up on his sentence again, “I don’t remember!”
The surprise is clearly written all over his face, as he looks over at Alex, their eyes meeting. Stark studies Alex for another few seconds, some sort of longing in his eyes, as he slowly turns away again.
Rudy continues talking to Stark for a little longer, before their break is over and they go separate ways again.
It’s shortly after the shooting is over for that day, when Rudy catches up with Alex as he’s walking back to his bungalow.
“I think you’re both to blame,” Rudy affirms, his voice sounding as thoughtful as the expression on his face looks.
Alex raises one eyebrow, a slight smirk on his face. “You think?”
Considering what Alex just said, Rudy nods, his head slightly cocked to the side. “Yeah. You’re both tired and just need some time off. Give him a few more days, brother, and he’ll be all right again.”
He waves goodbye, before entering his own bungalow, leaving Alex to walk the rest back to his own alone.
Rudy’s probably right, Alex thinks, only to have the voice answer, Fucking Fruity Rudy is always right, haven’t you noticed?
Alex nods, looking over at Stark’s bungalow, like he always does. It’s become routine, him checking up on Stark. Tonight Stark’s outside, sitting on the small porch of his bungalow.
He’s got his legs pulled up to his body, chin resting on his knees. When Stark looks up, there’s a pleasant smile on his face. He calls out, “Hey!”
Alex smiles back at him, answering with the same “Hey!” until Stark realizes he’s still supposed to be mad, turning his head away from Alex again.
When he walks inside, Alex realizes that, even though Stark’s pretending to still be mad, he couldn’t wipe the grin off his face.
Alex considers this a success.
The next morning, when Alex leaves the bungalow to go back to the set, Stark is already standing outside, looking ready to go.
Alex raises his eyebrows in surprise, but he’ll be damned if he were stupid enough to object.
They walk in comfortable silence, side by side, until Stark has to go into the make-up trailer while Alex goes to the clothing one to get into his uniform.
Stark brushes his hand against Alex’s, and Alex nearly stumbles over his own feet. When he turns around to just stare at Stark, he notices that he latter has quietly slipped into the make-up trailer, but the happy face on Tess’ face, the girl that’s responsible for the make-up, is enough for Alex to forget about this embarrassing little moment.
Everybody seems happier that day, even Yair Lotan (who, luckily, isn’t as grumpy as Doc Bryan is, and usually doesn’t make a single mistake while filming) has to re-shoot at least two scenes, because he can’t wipe that silly grin off his face.
When he walks past Alex, he claps him on the back, before catching up with some of the guys.
Since tomorrow is another free day off, they meet up in Marc Menchaca’s bungalow that night, beers already cooled and snacks out and ready.
Alex flops down on the couch, his arms immediately resting on the back of it, as he lets out a loud, content sigh. As he’s still relaxing his weary bones, he feels somebody sitting down next to him, their body radiating heat as they hand him a beer.
He cracks one eye open, eyeing the person next to him, and when his sleep-deprived brain realizes who exactly it is, both his eyes fly wide open.
It’s none other than Stark, who grins at Alex, before taking a long gulp from his own bottle of beer.
“Hey,” Stark breathes out, his hand on his own thigh, comfortably curled into the denim of his pants. The smile on his face is relaxed, and maybe Alex is wrong (could be; that’s been the case quite often the last few days, after all), but his eyes seem to shine just a tad brighter, and it makes Alex feel as loose as Stark looks.
“Hey,” he murmurs back, turning his hand to put it on the back of Stark’s neck. When he scratches at the nape of Stark’s neck with his thumb, Stark’s eyes flutter closed and he leans into Alex’s touch with a blissful sigh.
When Josh Barrett passes them, he gives Alex a thumbs-up. Alex grins back.
It’s fucking nice like this; in fact, it feels so fucking good that, no matter how hard he tries, Alex can’t wipe the silly grin off his face for the rest of the night.
Then again, it’s not like he really wants to; this is too good, after all.
Everything started like this, the first time — Alex’s hand on the back of Stark’s neck: Stark, loose and so relaxed, next to him. The first time they had a day off, all of them got together, and Alex spent the whole night talking to Stark, before they walked back to their bungalows. As they said good night to each other, Stark leaned in and kissed Alex.
Just like that. It was open-mouthed, soft, no pressure behind it. This kiss was the best kiss Alex had ever had.
He feels Stark shifting beside him, closer to him. Wrapping his arm around Stark’s shoulders, his hand curling around them, Alex grins at him. “You wanna get out of here?” he asks, quietly.
Stark nods, placing both their bottles on the little table in front of the couch, before he walks them out of the bungalow.
Rudy just raises one eyebrow at them, before grinning, his own arm loosely wrapped around Josh’s shoulders.
“There you go,” he mouths at Alex, smiling at him.
Alex leads Stark out of the bungalow, his hand curled around Stark’s hip. They walk like this until they reach their destination, Stark pressed comfortably against Alex, his hand tucked into one of Alex’s back pockets.
When they pass a bunch of extras that wave at them, grinning broadly and chit-chatting, Stark uses his most charming smile, snow-white teeth showing, his eyes twinkling, pinching Alex’s behind in the exact same moment.
His smile faltering for only a second, Alex whips out his grin, too, the one that always manages to win everybody over, only to flutter the tips of his fingers against Stark’s belly, fully enjoying the way Stark almost doubles over in a nearly fruitless attempt to not start laughing.
Stark goes completely still when Alex leans in, murmuring against his ear, “Don’t start what you can’t finish.” His lips graze the shell of Stark’s ear and linger for a long, long second.
The extras seem to notice nothing, continuing on their way past the two actors, all the while talking and laughing.
Stark wriggles around in Alex’s embrace and, before Alex really has a clue about what’s going on, has him pressed against a wall, grinding their hips together.
“I’m so hot for you right now,” Stark whispers: he’s biting at Alex’s jaw, his hands grappling for hold and finally settling on Alex’s hipbones.
Laughing breathlessly, Alex tilts Stark’s head back, pressing a kiss to his full lips. “I think it’d be better if we continued this somewhere private,” he chuckles, lacing his fingers with Stark’s, leading the way to his bungalow.
The door to it is barely closed when Stark is all over him: his left hand under Alex’s shirt, the other one fumbling with his belt buckle while, he raises one leg to press between Alex’s, letting the taller man ride it. Alex shifts, closer to the friction that Stark is providing so willingly, and pulls him closer, watching how the other man shivers, enjoying the feeling of Stark moving against his leg.
Saying that he minds would be a complete lie, so instead, Alex kisses Stark back for all he’s worth, all the while pulling his partner into the bedroom.
Stark gasps loudly, grinding against Alex. His eyes closed in bliss, Stark drops his head against Alex’s collarbone, barely able to hold himself still, as Alex rubs his thumb over his co-actor’s hipbones in slow, lazy circles.
Sucking on a particularly tender spot on Stark’s throat, Alex thrusts his hips upwards, moaning at the friction. Stark tastes sweet, like he had pineapple juice for lunch. Maybe he did.
“I’m gonna… fuck, fuck…” His voice only a hoarse whisper now, Stark grinds against Alex once, twice, and then he’s groaning loudly, their come mingling on Alex’s belly.
Alex carefully rolls Stark off him, before strolling into the bathroom to get a wet washcloth to clean up. He brings one of the soft towels the cleaning crew always puts in his bathroom with him, just in case.
Stark whines quietly when Alex touches his sensitive flesh. He waits for Alex to finish, before he curls up on his side, still facing Alex. He reaches a hand out to his co-star, wiggling his fingers lightly.
Discarding the washcloth, Alex crawls onto the bed, pulling Stark close to him, as he gets comfortable.
Blinking up at Alex with drowsy eyes, Stark smiles lopsidedly, his face flushing when he asks, “What were we fighting about, anyway?”
Alex chuckles, rubbing his thumb over Stark’s cheekbone. “I have no idea,” he admits. Apparently, he wasn’t the only one thinking this whole fight had been as ridiculous as almost everything that comes out of PJ Ransone’s loud mouth.
Stark’s voice is barely more than a mumble when he says, “I’m sorry,” but Alex understands him nonetheless.
It starts on a Tuesday afternoon.
Stark apologizes on a Thursday night, and it ends with that.