Sharing a bed with your significant other, Ben has learned, is not beautiful and serene and romantic like it is in movies.
Most mornings, he either wakes up freezing cold, Beatrice having stolen all the covers, or he’s more than a little uncomfortable and overwarm where various limbs of hers are pressed up against him. Sharing space with another person so intimately isn’t always easy.
Today, Ben slips back into consciousness to find that Bea’s elbow is somehow poking him in the ribs, and one of her legs drapes over his as she sleeps on her side. The sun is shining through their window, the clock reading 9:00 am. It’s a Saturday, so they can afford to sleep in a little. Unfortunately, Ben kind of hates sleeping in.
Well, okay, the sleeping part is nice. Even waking up next to Beatrice is amazing- it’s been about a year since he almost lost her because of those ridiculous rules, and Ben is still grateful for every single day that he gets to spend loving Bea, every morning that she’s the first thing he sets eyes on. He’d just, you know, also love it if she was a heavier sleeper.
Beatrice Duke is not a morning person. Ben hasn’t missed that fact in their two years together, and now that they share a flat, it’s all he can do not to accidentally wake her up or piss her off somehow before she’s had her breakfast and plenty of caffeine. Early-morning Bea tends to be grumpy, especially when you wake her before her alarm goes off. His best bet right now is to remain perfectly still to avoid jostling her awake. But Ben can’t help it- Bea’s elbow is killing him, and also he needs to go to the bathroom.
Ben very gently and quietly eases Beatrice off of himself, doing his best not to wake her. Rolling out of bed, he starts to tiptoe across the wooden floor of their bedroom- and winces, as the floorboards let out what sounds like an absolutely deafening creak under his feet. Not bothering to look over his shoulder to see if his girlfriend has woken up, Ben makes a run for it, bolting for the bathroom down the hall.
When he gets back a few minutes later, he nervously slips into the room to find a bleary-eyed Beatrice glaring at him. Curled up on the mattress, her messy bedhead hair spread across her pillow, her blue eyes half-closed against the sunlight, she’s actually kind of adorable. Ben can’t help the little smile that turns up the corner of his mouth at the sight of her.
“Good morning, love! It’s a beautiful day,” he says happily, gesturing to the sunny morning outside.
“Dickface. You woke me up early,” Bea mumbles, running a hand across her eyes, rubbing away the crust of sleep gathered there. “I hate that. And I don’t like waking up alone anymore. Too lonely.”
“I’m sorry, Bea,” he says. “I tried not to-”
“C’mere,” Beatrice pats the empty side of the bed that Ben just vacated a few minutes ago. He crawls back in next to her, still smiling.
“You’re not going to hit me with your pillow again, are you?” Ben asks teasingly, leaving an exaggerated amount of space between them on the bed, just in case.
“That was one time,” Beatrice protests, reaching for him. “I apologized. And it was only because I was overtired from staying up late talking to Hero on the phone.”
“I’m kidding,” Ben admits. “I like waking up next to you, too. Makes it easier to do this.”
He leans in, cupping her cheek in his hand as he brings his lips to hers and she happily responds, in a soft, slow, lazy sort of kiss. When he pulls away, he wrinkles his nose.
“You taste like toothpaste,” Beatrice hums. “Minty.”
“You taste like morning breath!” Ben sticks out his tongue in disgust.
“Oh, shut up, you. I’m only human.”
“You’re a human who really needs to brush her teeth, love. I say this because I care.”
“You say it,” Beatrice challenges, cuddling up close and resting her head comfortably on his shoulder, “because you just want to kiss me some more, without it tasting bad.”
“And what if I do?” He presses a kiss to the top of her head to punctuate the question.
Beatrice drapes an arm across his chest, and the warmth of her body lulls him to distraction as she returns the favor with another quick peck on his cheek.
“You don’t hear me complaining,” Bea says lazily, enjoying the cuddles. “Mmm.”
“I still can’t believe we actually have our own place,” Ben admits softly, leaning his head against hers, savoring the feeling of Beatrice in his arms. After last year, he knows too well that this is something to treasure. “…Bea?”
She’s already asleep again, her breath warm and slow against his neck.
Ben settles in, figuring he’ll give Bea at least a few more minutes before he tickles her awake and they head, laughing, out to their kitchen to make a late breakfast together.
Their kitchen. Their flat. Theirs. Team B, together.
Yeah, okay. Forget morning breath and pillow fights. Ben could get used to this.