Lucio let out a long sigh as he pushed back from his desk, lifting a hand to his throbbing head. The pain had started just after his first meeting, and it had only worsened through the second and third. Now, a fair way into the stack of paperwork that was occupying his desk, the headache was impossible to ignore. A sharp spike in the pain caused the Count to wince as someone knocked on his door, and, a moment later, Consul Valerius entered.
"Lucio, good to see you're here working. I need you to-"
The Consul cut off as he noted Lucio's head resting in his hand, the way his eyes were squeezed shut, and the grit of his teeth. Valerius sighed softly and strode across the room, setting a hand on Lucio's back and taking his free hand to coax him up slowly.
"Come on, you can't stay here like this."
Lucio shook his head a bit, resisting the guidance. "No, 'm fine… Need to get the rest of this done."
Valerius frowned, tsking softly before urging the Count to stand again. "You're not going to get anything done if you keep trying to work like this, Lucio. Now, you can get up and feel better, or you can sit here and wallow in pain. I won't ask again."
A beat passed before Lucio slowly took to his feet, letting Valerius guide him out of his office and into his bedroom. The Consul lead him to sit, and Lucio obeyed, watching him with hazy eyes as he moved through the room to get Lucio's makeup wipes. When Valerius returned, he gave Lucio a small smile and a soft kiss to the forehead before beginning his task of removing the Count's makeup.
"You got a lot done. I'd say it's a successful day."
Lucio hummed as Valerius worked. "Didn't finish it all, though."
"But you finished most of it. Vesuvia wasn't built in a day, Lucio. If you overwork yourself, we won't have a Count anymore."
A few beats of silence passed between them before Lucio sighed in resignation. “Yeah, I guess you have a point. This is why you’re my Consul, Val.”
Valerius shook his head with a huff of a laugh, moving to sit against the headboard. “Oh? And here I was under the impression it was because you, and I quote, ‘want that hot piece of noble around 24/7’. That is what I overheard you saying just before you appointed me to my position, isn’t it?”
The count sputtered as Valerius guided him to rest his head in the Consul’s lap. Nimble fingers pressed gently against Lucio’s temples, rubbing in soft, small circles. The room fell into silence as Valerius worked, a smile on his lips as he watched Lucio’s face shift from strain to relaxation.
Soon, he was fast asleep, snoring softly. Valerius carefully shifted Lucio to properly lay in his bed, pressing a soft kiss to his forehead before turning to leave. He stopped after just a step, turning to look at the hand holding the edge of his jacket. He chuckled softly, shaking his head and slipping off his shoes before sliding into bed beside Lucio. Valerius sighed softly, unable to help but smile as the Count snuggled close in his sleep, and wrapped his arms around Lucio. As the sun slowly set out the window, the Consul let his eyes slide shut, content to stay with his love for the night.