Title: Private Meets Public
Series: Little Fantasies
Julien gasped for air as another coughing fit over took him. Finally, the coughing subsided, leaving him sweaty and with an achy chest. Before flopping back down, he turned his pillow over hoping that it would offer some cooling relief. He felt as though he was burning up from the inside out.
"Wait," Alex commanded as he came into the bedroom. "Lay down on your stomach, not your back."
Julien squinted at him and could just make out the thermometer in his hand. Groaning, he did as he was ordered. He'd been sick for over a week and Alex had been taking his temperature regularly. It wasn't nearly as much fun when he was sick, Julien thought, but he did get some comfort out of the ritual.
The air felt deliciously cool on his backside when Alex slipped his pajama pants down. Julien had forgone underwear a few days ago when they just kept getting in the way. The feel of fingers parting his nether cheeks and the small glass tube slipping inside him, had his stomach twisting in a not unpleasant way. He tried to lie still, but started to cough again. Alex quickly removed the thermometer.
"Ok. That's enough. It's time to get you seen," Alex said.
"No-cough, cough. I-cough," Julien tried to tell Alex that he didn't need to see a doctor. Working around kids all the time, he picked up the stray cold bug often. But he couldn't stop coughing long enough to get the words out.
Not that it mattered, as Alex was already on the phone making an appointment.
"Come on, let's get you into some clothes. The nurse said if I brought you in right away, they'd squeeze you in between appointments."
Julien watched, and coughed, as Alex pulled out some clean sweats and long sleeved t-shirt. He wished he had the energy to argue with him, but with this damn coughing and achy-ness, all he could do was lift his arm and put it in the shirt. By the time Julien was dressed, the clean clothes were wet with his sweat.
Leaning on Alex, Julien made to the car and dropped down on to the seat. The coughing had stopped long enough that he turned his head and said, "this is ridiculous. Its a cold." He wanted to say more, but Alex had shut the door.
"Just sit back and relax. You are going to the doctor and that's final," Alex said as he got in the driver seat.
Julien thought back to the time he felt that he had to coax Alex into taking a more dominant role. As soon as he could talk without coughing up a lung, Julien decided he was going to talk to Alex again. This time about how this dominance thing was supposed to work. It was supposed to be when HE wanted it. Not when Alex decided to just take over all control. Although, Julien admitted to himself, he really did enjoy it when Alex went all dominant on his own.
"Come on, sleepy head. Let's get you inside."
Julien startled awake when Alex's voice came so close to his ear. "What? We're here?"
Releasing the seat belt, Alex smiled at him and said, "yes, we're here. I think you fell asleep before we were even off our street."
Wanting so badly to give a grunt of manly dismay, but knowing a grunt, even a manly one, would only cause the coughing to start up again. And with his hot skin coming into contact with the cool fresh air, Julien started shivering. Nothing one can do is manly when your teeth are chattering from cold, Julien thought.
"Hi, can I help you?" The young woman at the receptionist desk asked in an overly perky voice.
"Yes, this is Julien Franks. I called earlier and the nurse said to bring him on in," Alex replied.
"You still have to check in." Came the still perky voice.
"That's what we are doing."
The growl in Alex's voice took Julien by surprise. Alex was always nice. To everyone. But a violent shiver and even more coughing took over and Julien's only thought was to breathe again.
"Does he have the flu? He can't wait in the waiting room if he has the flu," the perky voice held a bit of concern.
"We don't know if he has the flu. THAT'S why we are-"
Before Alex could finish, a large nurse came bustling over. "I'll get him in a room."
"But he didn't fill out the forms."
Ushering Alex and Julien through a door, the nurse tossed over her shoulder that she'd get that taken care of in the exam room. "Sorry about that. Cindy is a sweetie, but this flu outbreak has disrupted her normally orderly waiting room."
Alex and Julien followed her down the hallway and into an exam room. "I don't mind to fill out whatever form she needs me to, its just Julien really needs to sit down."
When the nurse patted the exam table, Julien sank down onto it and let gravity do its job. He gave a groan as his poor aching body was finally horizontal.
"That's right, you just lay on down, and we'll get your vitals," the nurse said as she gathered up the tools of her trade.
Julien rolled to his side and pushed his sweats down.
"I'm not giving you a shot yet. I just need to take your temperature, get your blood pressure and your pulse," the nurse commented.
Julien's eyes flew open and he looked at Alex. Even though no sound came from Alex, Julien could see the laughter bubbling in his eyes. He'd gotten so used to having his temperature taken rectally, he had just automatically bared his ass.
"Here, Julien, let's get those pants back up. She just needs your arm. Here, let me help," Alex reached down and with one swift move, Julien's butt was once again hidden from view. "He's been sick for over a week and running a temp, he must not have known what he was doing."
"Yeah, this flu has got everyone down," the nurse said as she pumped the blood pressure machine.
"Is it flu?" Julien croaked out.
"Well, we have to do a nasal swab, but I've been working here for 15 years and I feel safe in saying that its definitely the flu. Why didn't you come in when you first started feeling bad? We have stuff that'll work on the flu if you get in quick. But if its been over a week all we can do is giving you stuff for the symptoms."
Julien let the nurse ramble on as she took his blood pressure, ran the thermometer over his head and felt his pulse. He was too tired to think.
"Its the coughing that's probably making him the weakest. That and the fever," the nurse rambled on. "I'll just do a quick swab and let the lab run it. The doc will fill out the prescriptions and you two can get back home."
As Julien suffered through the indignity of having an extra long q-tip swab up his nose, Alex asked, "won't we see the doctor?"
Putting the swab in a test tube, the nurse said, "what's he gonna do? The test will come back positive, we'll get you some cough medicine and some stronger fever reducer and it'll run its course."
Julien let out a small laugh as the nurse went out the door. "Guess she told you, huh?"
"Yeah, I guess she did, Mr. Bare-It-All," Alex laughed back.
With another groan, Julien turned over and closed his eyes. He'd just rest a minute and then he'd come up with a smart ass remark. He woke to whispering a half hour later.
"Its the flu. Here's some samples of the medicines, we'll give it to him now and you can run out and get the full prescription filled," the nursing said handing Alex a white paper bag. "Oh, you're awake. Your friend here will help you home."
"Partner," Julien rasped out.
"Whatever you call him, he's going to get you home and get your medicine. You should be filling better in another week. This is a tough flu, most are down for 10 days to two weeks."
"Thank you. You've been a great help," Alex said as he helped Julien into a standing position.
"I didn't do anything, but you're welcome. Now get this boy home and into bed," she said and then turned to Julien. "And you keep those pants up, you hear me? You don't need to be baring it all until you've been fever free for three days."
Julien felt his face burn with red hot embarrassment. "Sorry," he mumbled.
Laughing as they walked out the door, the nurse said, "Ah, don't be sorry. I see so many butts, they all look the same to me. But I'm sure your partner here liked it."
Julien hurried as much as he could out to the car with Alex right behind him. Settled into the car and finally on their way home, Alex turned to him and said, "well that's a case of private meeting public, if I ever saw one."