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illuminate & obscure

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When Jack - he asks to call him Jack - kisses him it's like a breath of fresh air. A sudden and crushing feeling. But in a good way. Always in a good way. The warmth comes onto him in waves. Swallowing, lulling. Fills him up from the bottom to the top. Covers him, sheltering.

Timothy wonders if that's what home feels like. What bliss supposed to taste like.

It's... giddy. He feels elevated and safe. Euphoric. Like everything he could ever wanted, ever dreamed of. He aches and craves, moves to the beat, eager to give, to worship and admire. To follow anywhere. Even into delirium.

And he wants to laugh, to giggle mindlessly, a sweet and bubbly sound. But Jack steals another kiss from his lips. Drinks away that happiness, sealing it with his own grin, his own yearning, and pulls them further. Together. Two beings, but as if they are one.

"You already gave me so much, Timmy, now, let's spice it up. Tonight I want you to take".

*

And when the morning comes Jack shines ever so brightly - resplendent dawn contained in a human form. But Timothy panics. His hands trembling. There's a patch of small brownish spots on his skin. Which weren't here yesterday. And it's bad. It's wrong. His breathing fastens. They're supposed to look like him. He's supposed to look like him.

Timothy takes pride in being the closest, nearly similar, the almost perfect copy of Hyp – Jack, right, Jack. It's like fate, his destiny. A god wearing a face so strikingly identical to his own. A mortal with no initial ties, but with a body type just right and the bone structure so alike. Maybe his skin tone is a bit paler, but it’s fine. He’s fine, he tells himself. There’s always enough sun to tan in.

The only problem so far was his eyes. Obviously. It’s hard to have eyes like Jack. Radiant yellow, swirling golden rays, honey sweet and dangerously sharp like the edges of a star. Perfect. As perfect as only a god can have.

Timothy considers magical rituals, maybe some experimental potions. But then they’re alone and Jack blinks away the amber. And suddenly there’s the same mismatched pair of green and blue staring back. Just like a mirror. And Timothy is breathless, stricken, blessed. And Jack laughs, deep and content, because he messed up the placement.

But that’s different. That’s bad. The spots… There's more. On his arms. His collarbones. His shoulders.

He needs to do something. He has to do something. Try to scrub them off. Erase, wipe away. He has to get up. He can’t let him see. Disrupt their similarity, destroy the carefully crafted illusion. He knows, he knows he’s nothing special. Just another cleric, who was a bit more fortunate, a bit prettier and funny to talk to. In the right place, at the right time. But just as replaceable.

But Jack's hand rests on his cheek and Timothy freezes. The warmth slips away from him and all he can feel now is that cold sharp dreadful fear. His body felt numb, paralyzed. He failed. He’s done. Bit off more than he could chew. Oh, god.

"Huh. Forgot that happens sometimes. Well, aren't you pretty, hmm? Literally sun-kissed".

Uh.

Jack smiles widely, blinding, and slides his fingers over the freshly put freckles. His own damn handiwork. And Timothy thinks that his heart stops at that moment. Jack likes this. He can keep them. He doesn’t have to change it. Doesn’t have to go.

He leans in. Breathes shakily. And he melts.

///

Kissing Jack is suffocating. He's overwhelming and Rhys wants to give up and drown in him. The lack of oxygen burns his lungs. His whole being is burning. And maybe that's just how Jack wants him to feel. Dazed and ablaze. Feverish.

There's something akin to swimming against the tide in their collision. Rhys tries to move freely, but keeps getting swallowed up by waves. Jack is everywhere. It should be frightening. Rationally he should be horrified. But it just riles him up.

He moves, but Jack moves faster. Bites, but Jack's teeth are sharper. Gasps and hears a low chuckle by his ear.

Rhys wants more. He's greedy like this. Hungry and ambitious. And Jack understands it all a little too well. And sometimes he's willing to share.

"Sharing is caring" he whispers, static and echo piercing each word. And Rhys' hand doesn't feel like his own again. As if it ever was.

*

He inspects the aftermath of this curiously. The scratches and bruises. Teeth marks buried into his neck. Sometimes they heal just as normal injuries would. Sometimes they fade after hours. Rhys traces each one, maps them out. There's a pattern in Jack's chaos and he wants it engraved in his mind.

After a while he starts to notice small dark dots. At first he blames it on the ink and his own clumsiness during studies. But they won't come off and Rhys observes, theorizing.

When the bigger dot replaces quite an impressive love bite - if can he even call it that - Rhys is hooked. It's black. And elegant in a way. Like a birthmark he wasn't born with. And there's an array of this spots on him by now. All in the places where Jack bit, sucked or just pressed his lips rather passionately. So he concludes.

"What's up with that?" Rhys asks when Jack shows up again.

"Oh, kiddo. So that's how it is now.... Should I go easy on you or something? On the one hand, ha-ha, ooh... Your hand's already inky black, but with our frequent rendezvous... let's say you might end up just totally... obscured".

There's that dumb grin on Jack's face now and Rhys purses his lips, squinting. Jack huffs and moves quickly. Yanks Rhys' chin up and stops. Admiring. Thoughtful. The dots on his neck form an almost perfect triangle.

"Don't get your panties in a twist, Rhysie. I can control it. Well, if you ask me nicely".