Jim can hear the buzz and whine of the mosquito; can feel the small, inconsequential shift of the air as it moves closer. He smiles. One of the perks of being a sentinel; no bug bites. They can't sneak up on him, the piercing of his flesh felt too late to save him from the maddening itch that follows; nope, not him. He expands his vision and teases it, lets it settle on the back of his hand, lets it choose a spot to stab and suck at.
He'll swat it before it does that, of course, but for now he's watching the light filter through its filmy wings, the vibrations as it beats them swiftly, poised to… to…
He jerks out of the brief zone and sees Blair studying a smeared patch of black and red on the table.
Jim stares at the unbroken skin on his hand and sighs in relief. Saved. "Thanks, partner," he says lightly.
"Glad I could help." Blair looks at his palm and grimaces. "Bug juice. Gross."
Jim squints at it. "It really is," he agrees, heartfelt. "I can see this bit of wing --"
"Jim!" Blair's face contorts again. "Dial down. Seriously."
"And it looks like a gallon of blood from this close up…"
"I'll wipe it off on your bed if you don't stop it."
"What? Hey! No!"
He chases Blair up the stairs and catches him just as Blair's palm is an inch off the pristine smoothness of the yellow cover.
Wipes Blair's hand clean, so clean he doesn't flinch as he presses a kiss into the cup of skin, all heartlines and lifelines and his to kiss, his to press against his own palm as they fall to the bed, mouths catching and kissing, holding hands.
Later, much later, with Blair drowsy, tucked up against him, Jim remembers the table.
"What?" Blair murmurs, grabbing at him with his eyes shut. "No. Stay."
"I have to clean the table," Jim explains. "That bug made a big mess for a little guy."
"'Guy'?" Blair sits up, all alertness now. "It was a male?"
Jim thinks back. "Yep."
"But they don't bite!" Blair looks upset. "I killed something for no reason. Oh, man… my karmic balance just nosedived."
"You're kidding, right?" Jim gives him an incredulous look. "Blair… tell me you're kidding. Blair?"
But Blair's already meditating, cross-legged on the bed, his back turned, his spine a stiff exclamation point of indignation.
"I was zoned," Jim snarls as he stomps naked down the stairs in search of bleach and rubber gloves. "How am I supposed to talk in the middle of a freaking zone?"
"Partners communicate!" Blair yells from upstairs.
"I knew there was a reason I worked alone," Jim mutters and bangs his head on the cupboard door as he turns.
Clumsiness. Not karma. Just clumsy.
"Say an om for me," he calls up to Blair, and begins to scrub the table clean.
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