"Those things are gonna be the death of you."

Rusty paused, then raised his eyebrows mildly at the chili dog he was holding. "What, this?" he asked. "There's a lot to be said for a good chili dog. You can't find one of these just anywhere."


"— besides, look at me. I don't look like I'm in any danger of dropping dead because of the fat clogging my bloodstream."


"...and they taste good. It takes a certain kind of bravery to eat like this nowadays, you know."

Danny nodded solemnly, adjusting his cufflinks to cover his delight at having gotten Rusty so defensive. "Better living through gastronomic cliff-diving," he said, flicking his wrists and admiring the cut of his shirt. "I had no idea you were that dedicated to an existence on the edge."

"Hunh." Rusty carefully set the chili dog down on the suite's bar counter and fastidiously wiped his fingertips on a napkin, then took a careful swallow from his perfect glass of bourbon-and-soda. Danny watched each movement with a slight smile, the flash of Rusty's manicured nails in the low light, the bramble-dark glimpse of his tattoos through his shirtsleeves, the droplet of condensation that dripped from the bottom of the glass onto the plush cranberry-coloured carpet.


Rusty set the glass down, ran a thumb across his lower lip, and Danny couldn't take his eyes off the elegant wing of his collarbone that showed under his shirt when Rusty leaned forward to kiss him. He tasted like wood-aged alcohol and peppered heat, prickling the vulnerable insides of Danny's mouth and flooding him with warmth.

Once flick of his soft tongue and then Rusty pulled away in a shimmer of fine cloth and expensive cologne to settle back on his stool, picking up his drink again with that enigmatic little smile. Danny licked his lips thoughtfully.

"Hmmmmmm," he said.

"That's what I've been saying," Rusty murmured, and this time Danny let himself grin.

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