Prompt: #067, Snow
Word Count: ~800
Summary: In which there's a snowstorm, and enough fluff to choke on.
“Look, look, snowing!” Zack's childish and grammatically incorrect voice rang out loudly in the previously quiet house as the not-quite-but-almost-four-year-old bounced up and down in pure delight at the sight in front of him, beyond the frosted and foggy window.
Ryan muttered something he wasn't sure he understood, it being too early for him to try making sense to anyone, up to and including himself (and he being himself, he couldn't even use coffee to make him more coherent; the only effect coffee had on him was making him exceedingly whiny). Whatever he might've said, however, was lost to Kit's statement of, “It's not snowing, Zacky, it's blizzarding!” The teenager seemed just as excited as the little boy by the prospect of building snow forts and having snowball fights – all of it was making Ryan quite annoyed, just like when the boys would play in the mud or something equally unsavory. He'd grown up in that respect far too long ago, and all that snowstorms like this meant to him now was that he'd be cold to his bones before ever stepping out of the house, and he'd wet and freezing and sore from shoveling snow (once the blizzard actually stopped, anyway) and from walking in the drifts that were well up to his waist by this point. And it meant snowballs to the ear, which was always about fifty times more painful than you'd think, and being so cold that showers at room temperature would make him feel like he was being boiled alive.
It was tough work, being as disillusioned as Ryan Galloway.
He was knocked out of his brooding (oh, he'd deny it all over the place, but he was most definitely pouting) by a sudden half-tackle from behind and complete blindness. He flailed desperately in the seconds it took his sleepy mind to realize that this was most likely Max, and it was nothing more than a blanket covering his head.
“Damn it, Max!” Ryan cried instead of other curses that rose to mind – after all, he had an example to set now, which was right up there with the scariest thing he'd ever thought about thinking. And if that was a confusing sentence, he blamed it entirely on the fact that he was only half awake and fighting it all the way.
Max didn't seem to be suffering the same problem, as he easily clamped Ryan's arms to his sides and held the blanket over his top half, despite the other man's struggles. “Hey, kids!” Max called cheerfully. “Why don't you go and get dressed?” There were shouts of joy and a stampede, and Ryan was beginning to feel quite disoriented. “And I mean dressed warm, both of you! Do it right, or you'll do it again.”
Now, Ryan would be lying if he claimed that having Max's arms wrapped around him wasn't incredibly nice, and warm, and comforting. But the blanket over his head was sort of dampening his enjoyment of the moment. “Geroff!” he grunted, wriggling in an attempt to escape.
“Now, now,” Max said, and Ryan could hear the grin in his voice. “There's time enough for that when the kids leave the house.”
(Ryan was momentarily glad for the blanket covering his head, despite his escape attempts, as he was pretty sure his face and possibly ears had turned a neon shade of red.)
There was a thumping noise that Ryan took to mean either a robber had broken in through the kitchen window, or the kids had decided they were dressed enough and were falling over each other in an attempt to be out the door first. He was sort of hoping for the robber scenario, because then there was at least a chance Max would take the stupid blanket off of his head.
“Now, you two keep an eye on each other, and be back in an hour for breakfast, okay?” There was a chorus of “OKAY!”s in response, and then the shrieking and slamming of doors that indicated the house was now free of all those of the under-eighteen persuasion.
“You gonna let me go now?” Ryan asked. Definitely did not whine. Ryan Galloway did not – oh, who was he kidding, Ryan Galloway did nothing but whine.
“Ryan.” Max's voice wasn't bright and mischievous, as it had been only moments before, and Ryan's shoulders slumped. “I know you're not a big fan of snowstorms. But...” his voice trailed off ominously, and Ryan felt himself tensing up, rather irrationally, since Max was actually loosening his grip.
And then there was light, as Max lifted the blanket up and stuck his head up close to Ryan's, a grin on his face. “You forgot, the adults don't go out and freeze in the snow. The adults stay in.” His grin grew, and Ryan found his face matching the grin.
The kiss that Max gave him still wasn't enough to keep Ryan from exacting a middle-school-like revenge by tackling Max and wrapping the blanket around his head.