Chapter Fifteen: Thanksgiving

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Betto drove slowly up the road, eyes darting around the familiar neighbourhood of Todd's childhood in the small chance that one of the local children would rush out in front of his car. It had happened before, a young girl after a soccer ball, and Betto had nearly hit her. Todd was sure the experience had traumatized his friend.

Betto glanced at him as he parked the car in the driveway of the salmon coloured house, a smile on his lips as he cut the engine. Todd just sat tensely in his seat, unsure who he was annoyed with. It might be Betto that had irritated him, talking non-stop about how excited he was to be seeing Ophelia. Maybe the radio station that had been playing shit music the entire fucking drive. Maybe it was because Levon hadn't texted him since that morning and he wanted to talk but he didn't want to seem clingy after the three-hour phone call they had had two nights ago. Betto was still teasing him about the call.

"You planning to get out?" Betto asked, humour in his voice, and Todd narrowed his eyes at his friend.

"I'm preparing to be forced through a dinner with you and Ophelia acting all gushy and disgusting," Todd sneered and Betto chuckled, not phased by Todd's shit mood. He climbed out of the car then moved to grab their two bags from the backseat. Todd heaved a deep sigh and glared at the house. The front door swung open and Ophelia came racing out. Todd grimaced as she sprinted right into Betto's arms, nearly toppling the larger man over, the bags hit the ground.

"Betto!" She half shouted against his chest.

"Hey, ciccino," Betto spoke lowly to her, holding her tightly against him. They shared a quick kiss that was enough to make Todd look away and finally get out of the vehicle.

"Hello, boys!" Bree called from the front stoop. "You're just in time for dinner!"

"I made sure we weren't late," Betto smiled his charming smile and Todd snorted.

"He broke several speed limits to do that," Todd told Bree and she narrowed her eyes between the two men. Todd snatched his bag up off the ground and slung it over his shoulder and ruffled Ophelia's hair while she hung off her boyfriend's arm.

"Was that them?" Gwen called before she stepped out, smiling warmly at the men while she dried her hands with a dishtowel. "Ophelia took off the second she heard the car."

"I have the right to be excited!" Ophelia told her mother defensively. Betto grabbed his things and they all started moving to the door. And then Levon stepped out, clearly wanting to know what the commotion was.

He looked as amazing as ever. Hair styled, vibrant pink shirt on with a pair of white shorts with bright green flowers. He was already smiling, feet bare as he stepped past his mother and onto the grass. Todd went still, watching his boyfriend with uncertainty. It had been close to three weeks since they'd last seen each other in person, and he wasn't sure how to respond, how to be reunited with someone he had missed too much for it to feel real.

"What?" Levon tilted his head, still approaching, a smirk playing on his lips. "No 'hello'?"

"Hi," Todd murmured. And then Levon was hugging him, squeezing them tight together. Todd inhaled deeply marvelling at how good Levon's smell made him feel. How amazing it felt to be back in Levon's arms, seeing his face, holding him. Todd felt himself melt into the embrace, his nose pressing into the warm skin of Levon's neck.

"I missed you, Toddy," Levon whispered, resting his forehead on Todd's shoulder. Todd could only nod. It felt like he'd been away from this man much longer than three weeks. But now, he was warm and all the shit he's been feeling seemed to fade. He felt like he was home. Levon felt like home.

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