Exhausted, Starsky slumped down on the new armchair near the fireplace. In the last couple of days, they had moved their stuff to the new house near the beach. Dobey had given them a week off to get all the things done, and thanks to their friend Huggy, and Dobey’s son Cal, almost everything had been carried over to the new place. When Starsky ran his hand along the soft material of the armrest and snuggled deeper in the cushions of the chair, he felt something sting him. “Ouch! Damn! What…” He groped beneath him and held a screwdriver in his hand. “Hutch! Why the hell have you left this in the chair?” he yelled and rubbed his butt.


“What’s up, Starsk? By the way, have you seen the screwdriver? I need it in here,” Hutch said from the kitchen.


“Wait,” Starsky muttered, and approached his partner on tiptoe from behind. “No wrong movements, pal,” he hissed, using the tool like a knife that grazed against Hutch’ throat.


Starsky felt Hutch stiffen when he grabbed him, but then Hutch suddenly relaxed and leaned his head back. Light blond hair mingled with dark springy curls, and Starsky sighed, nuzzling Hutch’s earlobe, “You always knew how to persuade me.” He released Hutch and pointed the screwdriver at his partner, prepared to give him a telling-off.


“Thanks. Can you hold this shelf so I can fix it?” Hutch said, and started whistling a tune.


This left Starsky speechless—but after a moment he started whining about the screwdriver having hurt him seriously.


“Cut it off, would you?” Hutch sounded irritated and obviously wasn’t in the mood to listen to Starsky’s complaints. “Let’s finish with the kitchen furniture, then we can call it a day. Here, this one needs to be over there, and we still have to…”


Besides being exhausted, Starsky had started to feel dizzy, so he said, “If you don’t mind I’m going to lie down for a while. It’s been a long day and I feel a bit weird—no, not because of the screwdriver. Don’t know if I’m coming down with the flu or so.” Starsky put his hand on his forehead and rubbed his eyes.


He was about to move toward the sparsely furnished living-room of their new house, when a large hand held him back. “You aren’t feeling well?” Concerned eyes looked at him, and Hutch noticed the flushed cheeks of his partner and said, “Maybe you should go to bed. At least we have put up the bed, and the kitchen is almost finished.” He cupped Starsky’s neck and let his hand linger there. “I don’t want you to be sick. Take some Tylenol and go to bed. Tomorrow is a new day.”


Starsky felt Hutch pulling him close and melted into the contact. Then he drew away, gave a nod, and trudged toward the bedroom. He knew he had to pay attention to his health after the Gunther assault. His lungs got infected easily, and a cold could turn into pneumonia.


After Starsky had been shot in the police garage, Hutch had taken care of Starsky, and they had realized that their love had reached a new level. They had become lovers. Living together was a new goal, and Starsky was looking forward to it. He smiled while getting undressed. When the cold air hit his body, he shivered and dove under the covers. Getting some rest would be the best for him, and tomorrow they would hopefully find new owners for Hutch’s old place. They needed the money desperately, and the people that were coming to see Hutch’s little house, had sounded quite interested.


Starsky heard Hutch rummaging in the kitchen, and was about to drift off, when he heard voices at the entrance door. He turned onto his other side and pulled the covers over his head. He wasn’t up to any distractions only wished for a quiet night. Distant laughter and excited voices reached him, but he didn’t care.


“Starsk?” Hutch’s soft voice near his ear made him turn around. Sleepily, he looked into concerned eyes. “Our new neighbors have arranged a little welcome party for us in their garden. I’ve told them already that you aren’t in a party mood. Or do you want to join us? There’s everything to eat and drink.” Hutch smoothed his hand over Starsky’s sweaty forehead.


“No thanks. Enjoy yourself,” Starsky mumbled, and closed his eyes again. He felt Hutch’s lips on his cheek. Then it was heavenly quiet again, and Starsky cuddled beneath the covers.




Starsky awoke to a loud noise coming from the door to the bedroom. He opened his eyes to see Hutch toddling into the room, a shoe in his hand, leaving the door open behind him. He bent down and swayed dangerously. Starsky patted on the bedside next to him. “C’mon here. What’s wrong?”


“Lost my shoe,” Hutch mumbled, and let himself fall onto the bed, burying Starsky halfway under him. “Oops,” he slurred apologetically, when he heard Starsky’s strangled yelp.


“Sorry, didn’t mean to hurt you.” Hutch rolled off Starsky to lie on the back, looking at the ceiling. Suddenly he started giggling uncontrollably and ended with a hiccup.


“Must’ve been some party”, Starsky chuckled, and ran his hand through the disheveled strands of Hutch’s blond hair.


“There was a lot to drink. They said we should empty the bottles. In the Tequila bottle, there was only this much left.” Hutch raised a trembling hand and showed two fingers. “The Whiskey took a bit longer to finish and the Bacardi…”


Suddenly, Hutch sat up and bolted from the bed. “’M gonna be sick.” He made his way to the bathroom, butting against some packing cases. Then Starsky only heard retching and pitiful moaning.


He crawled out of bed to assist his partner if needed. They had always been there for each other no matter if one of them had been hurt or drunk.


Hutch embraced the toilet bowl like he’d never let it go.


“You’re finished? Then let’s get you into bed.” Starsky reached for a washcloth to clean Hutch’s face.


“’M so sorry,” Hutch mumbled, and tried to get up from the floor.


Starsky forgot his own indisposition, put his arms around Hutch’s chest, and hauled him upward. “That’s my boy,” Starsky said, and slowly they made their way back to the bedroom.


“Wait a moment.” Starsky released Hutch and stepped over to the light switch. He squinted his eyes against the bright light and turned to Hutch again to help him get undressed. His partner stood unmoving, a silly grin on his face.


“Hey, you mind helping me a bit?” Starsky smiled, reaching for the belt of Hutch’s jeans.


“Sure, well, dunno why I drank all the stuff. It was fun and we laughed a lot. We’re lucky with our new neighbors and…”


Hutch continued rambling about the party and the drinks he was offered, when Starsky finally got off the jeans. He frowned and said, “Hutch, why are your jeans that dirty?” Starsky held the soiled denim in front of his partner’s nose. Hutch’s face showed a concentrated expression.


“Well, I had to pee, and as all the others used the compost heap at the end of the garden, I did the same. Must have lost my shoe in the process and trying to find it again, I think I fell and… Somehow I found back, but without my shoe. I’m really sorry.” Hutch leaned heavily against Starsky and seemed to be half asleep.


“We’ll look for it tomorrow. By the way, you do remember you’re expected to show off your old house tomorrow?” Starsky said, and led Hutch to the bed, helping him to get rid of the damp shirt. Without any response, Hutch dove under the covers, curling up into a ball.


Starsky looked at his lover and smiled. Hopefully, Hutch would be well enough the next morning to manage the inspection of the old house. Starsky went into the bathroom again to fetch a basin for Hutch, just in case. Then he switched off the light and lay down next to Hutch.


As if he had sensed his lover’s presence, Hutch uncurled a bit, and leaned back till he felt Starsky’s body against his. “C’mon here,” Hutch mumbled and raised his left arm. Starsky snaked his arm under Hutch’s and encircled Hutch’s waist.


“Stomach hurts a bit,” Hutch said softly and moaned when Starsky’s warm hand rubbed soothing circles on his taut stomach. Soon they were both asleep.




Bright sunlight flooded the room when Starsky woke up the next morning. He wasn’t used to the new surroundings, but as long as Hutch stayed by his side nothing else mattered. Automatically, he reached over but found an empty space. He frowned and listened for noises that indicated that Hutch had gotten up already. Then Starsky heard the shower in the bathroom. He snuggled under the covers to savor the remaining time. A bit later the door opened, and Starsky heard Hutch moving around.


“How are you today?” Starsky’s voice sounded muffled from under the blanket.


“Don’t ask. What about you?” Hutch sat on the edge of the bed, a towel draped around his hips. “Hey, look at me. Are you still running a fever?” He drew the covers back, put a hand under Starsky’s chin and turned his face in his direction. “You still look a little off. Need some more Tylenol?” Hutch’s hand caressed Starsky’s face, but it was batted away vigorously.


“And you? Propped up the bar!” Starsky sounded angry and concerned at the same time. “How could you drink all that different stuff? Losing your shoe, puking your guts out... Can’t leave you alone, Blondie. Hey, you are cold. Let me get you warm.”


Starsky pulled Hutch down on the bed, helping him to remove the damp towel. Then he pulled the covers over them and embraced his lover, running his hands along Hutch’s body, till the skin felt warm again.


“I love you,” Starsky whispered, and felt Hutch’s kisses feathering along his neck and shoulder. Starsky knew that they would be short of time if they continued this way. He drew back and said, “Let’s continue later, okay?”


Hutch disagreed with a soft moan and a tender bite in Starsky’s shoulder.


“Hutch, don’t you remember that someone is coming to look at the house, and maybe, if you are lucky enough, they are going to buy it?”


Hutch tensed. “Oh my God, I forgot. I feel lousy.” He rolled onto his back and stretched. “Thanks for putting the basin out, I had to use it.” Hutch blushed lightly before he got out of the bed and went over to one of the boxes, where he had stashed some clothes.


Starsky shook his head. “You were sick again tonight. You should have told me.”


Starsky got into his clothes. He still felt a bit weak and had a slight headache, but he would drive Hutch to his appointment with the potential buyers.


After some cups of tea and toast, they were ready to face the day. Starsky felt much better as soon as he sat behind the steering wheel of his dark red Thunderbird Convertible. Hutch even smiled, remembering the welcome party last evening. He shared some of the funnier moments with Starsky, and when they arrived at Hutch’s old place, both men were laughing heartily.


“That was a good one, really,” Starsky said. Then his smile froze. An older couple was standing at the entrance door of Hutch’s house, looking around searchingly.


“Shit! We’re late!” Hutch hissed, and hurried out of the car.


Starsky muttered something unintelligible and followed his partner.


Hutch introduced himself to the older people and shook hands with them. They entered the house, and Starsky decided to sit down on the front porch to kill the time.


Warmed by the morning sun, Starsky closed his eyes and thought of the past months, their search to find a new home for both of them, and their efforts to sell the old one. Young people didn’t have the money to buy a house, and older ones weren’t interested in the greenhouse or of the way Hutch had arranged the garden. Starsky snorted. It wouldn’t be an easy task to get the house sold. Kiko had offered his help with the garden, and he and one of his friends had tidied up a bit. Now it looked quite good, Starsky had to admit.


He heard voices from behind the house and straightened up. Soon, he could see Hutch and the older couple walking along the small path that led to the greenhouse. Hutch explained something to the couple, and they looked at the plants. Hutch turned toward the house and took a few steps. Starsky was about to make a remark, when Hutch suddenly threw up. The liquid left Hutch’s mouth in a wide bow. Hutch turned his head, and the vomit landed in the flower bed.


“Oh my God,” Starsky whispered. That was the end of this endeavor to sell the house. But then Hutch took a rake that was leaning against the house, and raked along the bed.


The couple was whispering to each other and approached Hutch.


“Young man, you needn’t clean the flower beds now. We’ve seen enough. How thoughtful of you to take care of the garden even now. We’re buying the house, aren’t we, Albert?” The woman beamed at her husband, who agreed wholeheartedly.


Hutch took out his notebook and scribbled the date for their meeting at the notary’s in it. Then the couple left, but not until they had smiled happily at Starsky, who was sitting petrified on the porch.


Hutch slumped on the bench next to Starsky, exhaling a long breath. “Ugh, that was close.”


“My God Hutch, you were killing me here. It was smart of you to grab the rake, hide what just had happened...”


“Yeah, thanks to Kiko, who must have forgotten to put the rake away,” Hutch muttered.


They exchanged a glance and started to laugh hysterically. Hutch held his stomach and hissed, “Don’t make me laugh more, Starsk.”


They calmed down and Hutch said after a moment: “Now I’m really feeling better.

What’s for lunch?”







Exhausted, Hutch climbed down the ladder, eyeing the drape of the new curtains for the living room.


“Starsk? Would you have a look?”


“Just a moment,” came a strained voice from the bedroom.


“What’re you doing? It’s been an eternity since you disappeared in there. And I’ve been working my ass off…”




Starsky emerged from the bedroom, breathing heavily, and holding a screwdriver in his hand.


“That isn’t needed,” Hutch said impatiently, and took it from Starsky. “Look at the curtains. I got the feeling that the left side doesn’t look right…”


“Nothing against your feelings, Blondie, but there’s more important stuff to discuss. I want to show you something.”


Starsky motioned Hutch to follow him into the bedroom.


“Voilá!” Starsky looked expectantly at Hutch, who didn’t look impressed at all. Everything seemed to be in place.


“So what?” Hutch turned to leave when he saw the big wooden ladder leaning against the wall. “What did you need that ladder for?”


Hutch looked up—and froze. There was a huge mirror on the ceiling over their bed.


“Aren’t you running riot here, Starsk?” Hutch asked, blushing at the same time. He remembered their first times at Starsky’s, when he hadn’t dared to look at the mirror while they were exploring each other’s bodies. Later it had been a lustful experience, but he had never told Starsky that.


“Running riot? That’s what you’re good at,” Starsky said pointedly. Then he smiled. “Let’s have our own welcome party.” He walked over to the window and drew the blinds shut. Stunned, Hutch watched his partner light some candles and fill two glasses with champagne.


“If you don’t mind, I’ll grab a shower first. You can fetch the plates from the fridge. I’ve prepared some snacks. ‘M always getting hungry…” Starsky disappeared into the bathroom.


Full of anticipation Hutch went into the kitchen. He took out the plates with various snacks and recognized some Starsky must have made especially for him. On his way back to the bedroom, he put down the screwdriver, he still held in his hand, on a chair.




Starsky was just shampooing his hair when cold air hit his body. The next moment strong arms snaked around his waist, and a naked body pressed against his.


“Let’s get ready for our party,” Hutch’s husky voice whispered near Starsky’s ear. He took over to rinse Starsky’s hair, while Starsky soaped his lover’s body.


When they stepped out of the shower, huddled under a large towel, they couldn’t wait to get into bed. They dried each other, not missing a single spot.


Hutch braced himself on an elbow and looked down at Starsky lying on his back beside him. He leaned forward and started kissing the scars still visible under the chest hair.


Starsky moaned and feathered his hand through the silky wet strands that covered Hutch’s forehead. He tugged at a lock of hair till Hutch looked up, and their lips met for a tender kiss.


Suddenly Hutch drew back and sat up.


“What about the champagne?” he asked. Starsky tried to reach over to the nightstand, but Hutch held him back.


He took a sip from the glass. Then he lowered himself over Starsky’s mouth and filled it with the sweet content.


“More,” Starsky demanded eagerly. Spoiled this way, Starsky finally licked his lips, a contented expression on his face. He drew Hutch close and licked his lips too. They kissed again, this time more urgent and passionately.


Hutch felt Starsky’s firm body arch against him, and his arms reached around Hutch’s broad back. When Starsky dug his hands in the tense muscles, Hutch gave an appreciative groan and moved his erection against Starsky’s groin.


An idea hit him, and in a swift movement he rolled off his partner and lay on his back, drawing Starsky on top of him. Now he had full view of the mirror above them. Starsky’s dark body covered his, the gentle pressure of his thighs provoked Hutch to spread his legs. Starsky braced himself on his arms and caressed the sensitive spots on Hutch’s neck and shoulders with a wet tongue. Hutch followed Starsky’s movements in the mirror, and his excitement grew.


He shivered when Starsky’s talented mouth went further down, trailing kisses along his belly and hips. Whispered words of love were exchanged, hands stroked heated flesh, and finally Hutch’s vision in the mirror blurred. He was carried away by the sensation of the love and passion they felt for each other. Nothing else mattered.



The end



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