“Reesh, what the fuck is this shit?”
There’s a jar of brown sticky liquid-y looking stuff on the bathroom counter. Till prods at it suspiciously. The container feels slightly warm to the touch.
Richard appears at the doorway holding a large mug full of steaming water. He’s dressed only in low slung sweatpants. Sweatpants that despite being comfortable and baggy, still manage to cling to his ass in a most flattering way. Till knows the fabric is worn and soft.
“It’s waxing sugar. I need to do my armpits and chest but then Paul called.”
“Can’t you just shave?”
“No?” Till looks a mixture of intrigued and exasperated. “Why not? Isn’t the point just to get rid of body hair?”
Richard sighs and settles in for the long haul. It’s no use trying not to explain now that Till expects an actual answer. Or maybe he’s only bored.
“Do you really want to know or are you just bored and want sex?”
Till raises an eyebrow, like he knows Richard is trying to distract him.
“Okay, fine. You asked for it but don’t even think about using this against me in some weird ‘Richard is a princess’ joke.”
Richard used to fell for Till’s best innocent expression but those days are long gone. Not that he doesn’t enjoy the way Till bats his eyelashes and smiles shyly at him. Manipulative bastard, that’s what he is.
He sets the mug on the counter and places the jar into it.
“The sugar needs to be warmed up so it’s consistency is right for application.”
Till nods and for a minute or so they observe in comfortable silence as the sugar gets glossier and more liquid. Richard fetches talcum powder from the cupboard under the sink and daps some onto his armpits. He tests the sugar with a finger. It’s warm but not unbearably so.
“You take some of the sugar and sort of work it into a right consistency. It needs to be sticky and warm but not too sticky or too hot. Then you spread it on the hairs,” Richard explains as he goes along, “And then you lift one corner so you can pull the whole thing off.”
“It rips the hairs out? Doesn’t that hurt?” Till frowns.
“Not much, the sugar doesn’t stick to the skin so it’s not so bad. And the talc prevents that too.”
Richard inspects the first armpit. The skin looks a bit red but hairless. He moves to do the other one, while Till tracks his every movement like he’s doing something new and wondrous instead of a routine he’s done hundreds of times before. Albeit, it’s the first time he’s had such a keen audience. Usually Richard likes to put on a show but it’s difficult to make waxing sexy. It feels too domestic and everyday. Once the idea of domesticity would’ve scared him. Till too, he knows. He wonders if this means they have finally grown up.
“So, anyway, the sugar is gentler and it takes longer for the hairs to grow back than with shaving.” Talking is always a good option he doesn’t want to dwell too closely with his own thoughts.
“Because you rip them out, roots and all.” Till seems oddly fixated on the fact.
“Yes, that’s why.” Richard is finished with his armpits and concentrates on his chest. He’s happy his chest isn’t very hairy to begin with.
“But you don’t even like pain!” Till’s exclamation makes Richard look up and find Till’s gaze in the mirror.
“This is so not about liking pain, Till. I want my some parts of my body to be hairless and this is the least annoying way to achieve it.” Richard deals with the last stubborn hairs and rolls the used sugar into a ball.
Till has his contemplative (bordering on sullen) face on and Richard’s not in the mood for any deep conversation. Nor does he want to spend the rest of the night coaxing the singer out of whatever headspace he’s managed to dig himself into over Richard’s beauty regimen. Time for that distraction.
“Want to help me with the aftercare?”
Richard waves a bottle of lotion in front of Till’s face. The singers eyes focus on it and his hand snatches it from Richard’s.
Till prompts Richard to raise his hand and then he’s smoothing the lotion on Richard’s armpit. It doesn’t tickle but the feeling is an unusual one and Richard giggles before he can help himself.
Till smiles but doesn’t otherwise comment. He’s much more thorough than Richard would be and rubs the lotion up the arm almost to the elbow and down Richard’s ribcage as well. He repeats the process on the other armpit and by the end of it Richard is almost quivering.
Till takes more of the lotion and places his hands on Richard’s chest. Richard expects a squeeze or at least a lewd comment but Till just gently massages the lotion into his skin. He reaches up and over Richard’s collarbone and sweeps down the shoulders. Till curls his hands loosely around Richard’s wrists and sighs. They stand in silence for a moment before Richard can’t stand it anymore and tilts his head and kisses Till on the corner of his mouth.
“Thank you.” He says quietly. It feels like he’s thanking for more than just the lotion.
Till ducks his head down with a small smile on his lips.