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pillow fights and pillow talks

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"Ugh, I can't believe she did that! I mean, I'm her brother, damn it!" Ryan crossed his arms and huffed angrily, leaning against a locker as he waited for Chad to get changed.

"Yeah, that's fucked up," Chad agreed, getting rid of his apron. "But trust me, I know how that feels," he glanced knowingly at Ryan and smiled sympathetically.

Both Sharpay and Troy have just betrayed their closest friends by ditching them. Sharpay, turns out, didn't need Ryan for the Talent Show anymore, and as for Troy, he just decided that the Wildcats are too lame for him, apparently. Something about being a different league. So, yeah, Chad and Ryan were having kind of a bad day.

"God, I wish she'd understand Troy is off limits no matter what she does," Evans groaned, turning around so that Chad can change his shirt in peace.

"And I wish Troy wouldn't ditch us for some scholarship," he agreed, finally getting into some more comfortable clothes.

"I don't think I can stand seeing her at all today."

Chad hummed, packing his bag and thinking deeply for a while. He understood that Ryan was upset, rightfully so, and that he didn't want to spend the night at Lava Springs, or else he'd go crazy... So maybe...

"Hey, man, why don't you crash at my place tonight?" He looked at the blond boy, who was taken aback by Chad's proposal.

"Really?" His face lit up immediately. "I mean, are you sure you aren't just saying that out of pity?"

Chad rolled his eyes, heading for the parking lot and gently shoving Ryan's shoulder as he walked past him, stopping at the door to open it. "Dude, if I didn't want you over, I wouldn't invite you, simple as that. I like spending time with you, and you'll feel better if you get away from here for a bit!"

"Yeah," Ryan agreed, still smiling. He was about to have a sleepover with Chad Danforth. Maybe life wasn't so bad after all. "Let me get my stuff! You can wait in the car," he said, tossing the keys to Chad before running off.

-

Ryan pulled up to Chad's driveway, parking his car next to Mrs. Danforth's one. Though, instead of turning the engine off, his grip on the steering wheel tightened and he sighed nervously.

"What, you scared to meet my mom?" Chad raised an eyebrow, smirking at Ryan.

"I don't know," the blond muttered, shrugging. "Kinda. I mean, it's very possible that she won't like me."

"Dude, why would that be? You're easy to like," Chad admitted, the tone of his voice shifting ever so slightly as he said the last part, causing Ryan to look at him from the side. Huh. Anyway.

"Thanks. Let's hope you're right," Ryan finally complied and turned off the car, the two of them getting out of it after getting their stuff from the backseat.

Chad went in first after opening the door and stepping inside, immediately tossing his shoes aside and waiting for Ryan to come in. "Hey mom, I'm back," he announced loudly. He glanced at his friend, smiling to encourage him, and then lead him to the kitchen.

"Good evening," Ryan said awkwardly, unsure what to do. He fiddled nervously with his arms, looking around the house. It was cozy.

"Oh, Chad, you didn't tell me we're having guests tonight!" Mrs. Danforth looked up from whatever she was cooking on the stove to look at her son, who kissed her cheek as a greeting. She then turned around to face Ryan, smiling at him warmly. Chad really took after his mom. "Hello there, you must be Ryan? I've heard so much about you!"

Ryan glanced at Chad, who whispered something to his mom, and was that blush on his face? "Yes, it's good to meet you, miss," he responded, relaxing a bit. "What did Chad tell you about me?"

"Oookay," Chad quickly interrupted, causing Ryan to giggle as he dragged him out of the kitchen before his mom could embarrass him further. "We're gonna set the table, yell if you need anything."

Ryan, again unsure what to do, just stood by the table as Chad opened several cabinets and passed the plates to Ryan. "Four?" He asked, placing the dishes on the table.

"Yeah, unless my sister doesn't bless us with her presence tonight," he explained, taking care of the silverware.

"I never knew you have a sister!"

"Yeah, two of them. Though one's older than me and in college. She comes home for the weekend sometimes."

Ryan hummed. Just when they were finished with the table, the food was ready and Chad's mom brought it on the table. It was a casserole, and it smelled really good.

"Go ahead, dear, take a seat," she said to Ryan, and then turned to her son. "Go get your sister, won't you?"

Chad groaned, dragging his feet across the floor but speeding up as he reached the stairs, and a minute or so later, he came back down with a visibly younger girl.

"Hi," Ryan awkwardly smiled at her. God, meeting your friends' teenage siblings was so awkward for no reason.

She nodded his way, taking a seat next to her mom and putting some of the casserole on her plate without a word. Chad also sat down, between Ryan and his mom, leaning towards his friend to whisper something to him. "She's in her angsty phase, excuse her. It's nothing personal." Ryan giggled, nodding his head understandingly.

They started eating, Chad's mom flooding Ryan with questions, but thankfully, Chad helped him with answering a bit.

"By the way," Chad said while chewing his food. "Ryan's staying the night, if that's okay?"

"Of course it's okay," Mrs. Danforth answered. "Door stays open," she added with a smirk, making her son blush furiously again.

"God damn," he said under his breath, standing up to take his and Ryan's empty plates to the sink.

"Language!"

"Sorry," Chad shouted from the kitchen, and when he came back, he looked at Ryan, suggesting that they should leave now. "It was really good, mom."

"Yeah, I'd come over sooner if I knew you cook so well," Ryan complimented her before leaving the room, flattering the woman and making her laugh.

-

"Nice room."

"Thanks, I like it too," Chad said, tossing his bag into a corner and throwing himself onto his bed, putting his arms behind his head and looking at Ryan.

The blond looked around, gently placing his backpack near the bed. The room was quite spacious, with a desk in the right corner and the bed next to it. Then there was also a closet and a chest of drawers, some posters on the walls, a few bookshelves, and what do you know, a tiny basketball attached to the door. And a TV! It was simply cozy and very Chad.

He sat down next to the brunet, looking down at him, unsure how to start a conversation. "So."

"So?" Chad sat up, holding himself up with his elbows. "Wanna go get some snacks? We can play some board games later. Or watch a movie."

"Or both," Ryan suggested, making Chad smile. It was about to be a great night.

"Hell yeah. Can I drive?"

"Oh, not a chance."

-

"So now I can play a land?"

The two boys were back from a local 7/11, having bought all their favorite snacks, now sitting on Chad's floor, listening to music and playing Magic the Gathering. Chad had a lot of nerd games. It was pretty cute.

"Yes, you get it now!" Chad smiled at the other boy, happy that he's finally understanding the rules after two rounds. "So now, if you want to play a creature, you look at the cost and tap the correct number of lands."

"Mhmm," Ryan nodded, knitting his brows and thinking really hard before he played the most basic creature possible. Nonetheless, he was proud of himself. "Okay, your turn."

"Sure, but remember to take a card," Chad reminded him before quietly doing his moves. He was really good at spotting Ryan without getting him to notice it. "You go. Now you can attack me, because your creature doesn't have summoning sickness anymore."

Ryan nodded along, trying to think of what to do. "What's an enchantment?"

"Let me see," Chad leaned forward to take a peek at the questioned card, and he was close enough that Ryan could feel his breath. He couldn't help but notice the freckles on Chad's cheeks and nose, his immediate instinct to count them all. It was hard to breathe, all of a sudden. Chad looked up, an unreadable emotion written all over his face. "So this just means that whatever creature you play this on gets a health and damage boost," he explained, his voice soft, almost a whisper. "If I were you, I'd save this until I get a better creature."

"Why not shoot your shot now?" Ryan whispered back, glancing at Chad's lipa for a split second.

The brunet's breath got shaky. "I'd be scared I'll waste it."

Finally, Chad leaned back and sat on his place again, clearing his throat and focusing on the game again.

"Okay, so, uh," Ryan carried on. "I play this one. And then attack you with the other one."

-

Chad laid on his bed, already changed into his pajamas, looking at the paused movie. Of course Ryan picked a musical romcom. And of course Chad agreed to watching it. He was alone, because Ryan started getting tired and decided to get ready for bed too.

When he finally came back, Chad couldn't take his eyes off him. It was very... Unusual to see Ryan in sweatpants. Not that he complained. He looked good. And also, whenever he got to see Ryan without his hat, his heart skipped a beat, and it did so right now too. God damn, why did he have to be so pretty even in his fucking pajamas.

"You didn't have to pause," the blond boy said as he sat back on the bed, leaning against the wall and hugging the pillow. Chad really wished that was him.

"I don't want you to miss any of this," he answered, smirking as he grabbed the remote and unpaused. Whatever was happening on the screen was... Raunchy? And weirdly enchanting. Chad stared at the screen, seemingly very focused.

Suddenly, he got interrupted by a pillow hitting him straight in the face. He flinched, hearing Ryan giggle. "Are you really enjoying it that much?"

"Fuck off," he snickered, grabbing another pillow and throwing it at Ryan, who tried to shield himself. "You wanted to watch this, first of all!"

"And you never argued!"

"Bitch," Chad laughed again as he ducked, barely missing Ryan's swing. "Don't forget I can throw you out at any second."

Now, Ryan got hit by a pillow and he fell on his back, all the giggling making his stomach hurt. "You don't have the balls," he said, watching Chad lean over, looking at him from above.

"Oh, you don't want to try me," Chad smirked mischeviously. "Do you accept defeat, pretty boy?"

Ryan stopped for a second, feeling his face heat up as his chest filled up with butterflies. He panted slightly from the pillow fight, looking right into Chad's eyes, still unable to decipher the emotion in them. He smiled, sneakily reaching for the nearest pillow and catching the boy above off guard, causing him to fall over as he groaned. He quickly sat up and now, he was the one above Chad. "Not a chance, Danforth."

Breathing heavily, they looked at each other for a while longer, and Chad realized just how much he enjoys looking at Ryan from below. His cheeks were so rosy and his lips were slightly parted, his hair now even messier, his eyes sparkling... He had to physically restrain himself from doing something he might regret. He cleared his throat, blinking and looking elsewhere. Ryan also shifted, and although Chad could look at him like that for an eternity, he felt relieved.

Quietly, they went back to watching the movie. It was nearly ending.

Chad glanced at Ryan, noticing that he's desperately trying to keep his eyes open. It was a really cute sight.

"Are you tired?" He asked softly, making Ryan flinch as he momentarily woke up.

"A bit, I guess," Ryan yawned, rubbing his eyes. It was getting late, after all - it was well past 1 AM.

"That's okay," Chad said, sitting up to get off the bed, stretching his arms as he stood up. "I'll go get a spare mattress," he said, slowly heading for the door, but Ryan quickly stopped him.

"Um, actually," he looked at Chad, but as soon as their eyes met, he looked at the ground, clearly embarrassed. "I can sleep here. I mean, with you. I mean-" He stuttered. "If you don't mind, of course."

Chad's entire chest felt warm, as if someone just started a forest fire in there. "I don't mind."

Wordlessly, they both got under the blanket after finishing the movie. Chad stared at the ceiling, definitely too tense to fall asleep right now. He expected Ryan to be falling asleep, but instead, he started a conversation.

"To be honest," the blond boy said, his voice a bit raspy. "Despite everything, I'm really enjoying this vacation."

Chad wasn't sure what to say.

"Uh, what I mean is," Ryan carried on, scared that he just made the atmosphere really awkward. "I'm really glad that we got closer."

The brunet rolled over to his side, facing Ryan, smiling slightly.

"What I mean is-" The blond struggled. "I really like spending time with you, and I really-" He sighed, covering his face with his hands before resting them on his sides again. "I don't know. I don't think anyone ever made me this... Happy. Like, really. Every day feels so worth it and special, and it never feels like I'm wasting time with you."

Finally, he gathered the courage to look at Chad, and as soon as he saw the boy's smile, he couldn't help but grin aswell.

"You're the best thing that's happened to me, Chad," he whispered, the tone of his voice making Danforth fire up even more. In the heat of the moment, he reached with his sweaty hand and took Ryan's smaller one, intertwining their fingers and breathing heavily.

"I'm..." He tried to think of something proper to say, but his mind was just a really gay mess right now. He wanted to confess how much he loved Ryan right now. I mean, maybe he's reading too much into it, but Ryan's speech kind of seemed like a love confession. "I'm glad you feel like that. I want to keep making you happy," he said after an awkwardly long moment. "And you make me happy, too. You make me feel... All the good feelings. I'm really glad to have you."

They were both confused, unsure of what they even were at this point. Were they friends? Was this just a one time thing? Would they never speak of it again?

But none of that mattered. What mattered was that Chad's hand was extremely warm, and it fit perfectly with Ryan's hand, and the motions Chad was doing with his thumb, caressing the back of Ryan's hand, was really calming, making the blond boy really sleepy. His eyes involuntarily closed, his breathing got slower and steadier. When Chad was sure he was asleep, he brought Ryan's hand up to his face and kissed it gently before drifting off to sleep, too. He really hoped they'd wake up like this, too.