It was autumn in the City and the buildings bled into the fog. There was a sharp wind that howled around corners, and it rained often enough that the people caught outside without an umbrella walked the streets with their shoulders hunched up and their heads down. All over the City people were hurrying home, wanting only to be out of the cold and the rain and the dull, grey skies, ignoring those around them with a lifetime of practice.

Hunk watched them through the window of the little café and wished that he could be one of them. He didn't want to be here, not really, not when he knew what was going to happen.

At least they were in public today.

The bell over the door jangled loudly and Hunk looked up, mostly expecting a stranger and oddly startled when it was Lance instead.

"Sorry." Lance dropped into the empty chair and shrugged out of his leather jacket. The old leather was splattered with dark droplets from the rain and the hair on the top of Lance's head was plastered firmly down.

"You came," he said and his surprise would have seemed more real, more honest, if he hadn't pushed the café latte with the double shot of espresso towards Lance.

"Of course. I said I would."

"I know. I just." Hunk picked at his croissant. "I didn't think you'd actually show up."

"Yeah. Me either." Lance grinned and, for a moment, it was almost like time had moved backwards for them and there wasn't this dull, sick, heavy feeling lying between them. Hunk even started to stretch out a hand to grasp Lance's--because they'd always held hands when they went out for coffee--before he caught himself and just let it lie on the table. Lance's smile faded and he took a large mouthful from his too hot drink to cover his embarrassment. Hunk just looked out the window until the present came rushing back.

"I guess we should get down to business," he said after a while.

"Yeah." Lance reached into his jacket pocket and pulled out several badly folded pieces of paper. "It's all signed. I got Keith to witness." He pushed them across the table and smiled, weakly, foolishly. "I guess. I guess this is really it, huh. We're really."

"Yeah." Hunk put the papers into his backpack and looked down at his mangled food. He should probably get up now and pay and leave before he made a scene or Lance did or they both spontaneously decided to do something that would only lead to pain and suffering and screaming matches. But he didn't really want to go.

"I still love you," Lance said, so soft and desperate that Hunk thought maybe he'd misheard. But Lance was looking at him so intently, so longingly. "Every day."

"I know." Hunk sighed and rubbed his eyes. "I know. I love you to. But we agreed."

They'd had to after Lance's accident. It had been a stupid little fight but Lance got so mad so very quickly and he shouldn't have gotten on his bike because he was a terrible driver when he was angry; he never paid enough attention to things like oncoming traffic when he was angry. It had only been pure, dumb, blind luck that only the bike had been crushed. But all Hunk could think about when the hospital had called and told him, his first, involuntary thought was, "Good. Serves him right."

Because while Lance's anger burned bright and fierce and brief, Hunk let his rage simmer.

"It's a stupid agreement." Lance was pouting and it took all of Hunk's will power to not lean over and kiss the pout away. "I can't." He took a deep breath. "I hate not being with you."

"I just. I don't want to be the reason you get hurt," Hunk said. "I don't want to cause you pain."

"Yeah, well, it's a little late for that." Lance fiddled with his coffee cup. He chewed on his bottom lip and gave what was probably a grin but was mostly just pain and want.

Hunk pushed away from the table and stood. He rolled the check between his fingers, wanting to leave and wanting to stay and wanting Lance more than anything else. "I'm sorry," he said instead of "I love you". "I have to. I have to go." He grabbed his backpack. Lance looked down into his coffee cup. He had his shoulders hunched like the people outside. Hunk's hand hovered above Lance's shoulder and he shoved it into his pocket.