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After talking with Lonny and taking some time to think Cole had told himself he was going to...talk to Hotch. He had told himself he would try to piece together what it was they even were, or...honestly just how the other man felt about him. Obviously Cole knew he cared for him, cared enough to try and teach him how to be a proper werewolf so that one day he’d have a pack, cared enough to make sure he had food before work and was clean. Not that the other man ever really did those things with any sort of gentleness but Cole had gotten relatively used to the harsh tone that Hotch often spoke with. At first he had thought that Hotch was angry with him all the time but that wasn’t the case, at least he hoped not.
He had told himself he would talk to Hotch because even with Lonny’s kind words and Lonny’s support the calm that had claimed his thoughts didn’t last forever. A nasty thing it was to find himself walking home from work with that black fog swiftly moving to cover up the ray of sunlight Lonny had shined through it. It had never been easy to brush the thoughts aside, but they had been much less frequent until he had started being intimate with Hotch. Of course they reared their head whenever an “incident” happened, but it had been awhile since that had happened. It had been awhile since he had put himself in that position, or been forced into it, and so the vile things he thought about himself had stayed tucked away. Talking to Lonny about it had only opened the wound again. Healed wasn’t the word for the strange calm he had been in before Hotch, between partners, it wasn’t healed but it had been ignored. The infection that had set in his heart had been ignored and he had torn it right back open and Cole found himself plagued with nasty thoughts more often than not.
The longer he refused to talk to Hotch the worse it got, but those thoughts were...so far away when he was really with the other man, when he was in Hotch’s presence those thoughts were so far off that it was easy to forget that they’d ever even been there. Then Cole would find himself alone, find himself walking back from work with nothing more to do than think and those thoughts would swarm to the wound he’d opened like flies to carrion. Then Cole would find himself back at the tent, back with Hotch and those thoughts would disappear for awhile and he found comfort in the fact that sometimes the other wolf was just there. Even on nights where they didn’t do anything other than simply exist in eachother’s presence Cole’s thoughts focused on nothing more than just being with the other man. It helped, perhaps, that Cole read more, kept his mind busy because Hotch wasn’t exactly the most talkative and at first Cole had felt a bit awkward but now he just found himself enjoying the quiet that strung itself between them at times.
He had shied away from talking to Hotch about his feelings. Part of it was because those thoughts seemed so silly when he was wrapped up in the other man and the other part of it was he was worried that if he spoke about them Hotch would pull away from him. Hotch would realize he was poison and he’d make Cole leave. Cole didn’t want to ruin whatever it was they had but the buzzing of flies only seemed to grow louder the longer he waited, tension building while he was away, tension that eased when Hotch was around but tension he felt was going to break soon.
Still, Cole was selfish in his want for the other man. Selfish enough not to speak on the things that swirled in his mind when he was alone. So lost he’d become in Hotch’s presence, lost in the smell of want and the feeling of being desired. It was intoxicating, and when he was with the other man, really with him those nasty thoughts were quieted and the buzzing seemed to stop. The ache of an infected wound disappeared for just awhile, just long enough for him to feel perfect. Was it selfish to take comfort in another person in the ways he did Hotch? Was that...Cole didn’t know and that too was a thought that gnawed away at him when he was away.
So very selfish Cole was though, selfish enough that when he returned from work this particularly night he had let himself find that comfort and warmth he craved all over again. He’d let himself feel perfect even if he didn’t deserve it, let himself get lost in his partner’s lips and touch. It was so easy to do. He never felt anything but wonderful when Hotch touched him, when the man’s lips moved over him in ways no one else’s had. The way Hotch touched him was so different from the ways others had, even when teeth and nails met his skin Cole never feared it, it was passion that he had never known and he was so absolutely trapped in it.
Trapped until it was over, trapped until he found himself curled beside the other man. Slick with sweat and burning in the most pleasant kind of way. A different sort of trap was encompassing him, and Cole fought with himself to keep it away but it was getting harder and harder to do that, even harder it was when he felt so fucking selfish for finding pleasure and comfort in someone else like this. He didn’t deserve it. He was disgusting and even with Hotch’s soothing touch it couldn’t keep the fear away forever. Lonny had told him that he wasn’t vile, that he had done the things he had to do in order to survive and that was true but...that didn’t ease him. Cole still felt disgusting, felt like he didn’t deserve the things Hotch gave him.
So he...pulled away. Slowly Cole pulled himself away from Hotch, feeling...sick? The tent they slept in wasn’t very large but there was enough space for Cole to move far enough away so that he wasn’t touching the other man anymore. He...felt like he shouldn’t touch him anymore. Cole’s touch was a filthy thing and he knew it, he knew he was disgusting. Cole felt like he could see it in the lines of how he touched his partner, see the decay starting to build and he felt awful for it. He had kept these thoughts buried before. They were usually quieted by being around Hotch, but he couldn’t keep them down forever and they had found the purchase they needed in his moment of weakness and now they would not be quieted. Cole said nothing as he pulled away though, said nothing as he shifted to sit up so that he could stare off towards the “door” of their tent.
Cole knew he should say something though, anything to assure Hotch that the disgust he felt wasn’t with him. It wasn’t Hotch’s fault, Hotch made it perfect but Cole’s jaw was clenched so tight that he couldn’t speak, and so he just...stared, drowning in the awful things that flooded his mind. He was a whore and for some reason the fact that he had found someone to share genuine pleasure with only made the thought...louder. He needed to say something anything but Cole couldn’t find his words.
It wasn't like Hotch wasn't unaware that their intimacy was something that should bring on change. He just...he wasn't going to stay? So it made him feel all the worse that he had...let it happen. Let it happen and keep happening because who the fuck was he kidding. He was weak for Cole. At first he had made him feel...antsy when he first met him. But it was because it made him feel trapped because he had just wanted to fucking leave. Even if he hadn't been able to make himself go with out finding Cole then finding him really just solidified it. So he had settled in doing the proper thing. He had made him into a werewolf and even if Cole didn't know it was his fucking duty to make sure Cole was going to be okay. His responsibility and he swore to the Gods that he would not fail at that. He owed it to everything he had ever done wrong. He owed it to the fucking coward he had been and still sort of was to prove that he could do this one simple fucking thing and not fuck it up.
So that. He was supposed to do that. Help Cole toughen up---hahahaha fuuucking ha--or at least just try to get him more wise to the ways of werewolves he knew. The real ones, he called them because these fucking city wolves were just.....why. He didn't understand it at all. The culture shift. He didn't get how wolves could live with being so alone from other wolves. The city ones that still had packs he guessed weren't so odd but other wise? He had a reason for being the way he was. He had to run. He had to hide. He had to keep fucking moving because it felt like if he stopped for too long he'd be found. Even if he wasn't it still itched in the back of his mind. Last year he had broken someone's arm because they touched his shoulder to tell him he dropped something and they happen to have....her hair color. It had been a fucking man but he hadn't cared because it was her hair color and it was all he could see and he touched him. He felt bad for it. Really bad for it and even worse that he just...dipped. But he couldn't do anything else other than that really. He didn't have money to help cover it. He apologized profusely and became a god damn panic attack sort of mess and then just ran.
He couldn't let shit like that happen. He just couldn't. It would catch up with him and then he was going to get tagged down and put in a fucking jail cell and then he'd be really stuck. Then he'd really be found. It was amazing honestly that he hadn't hurt someone thus far. He had already been in Mythril longer than he usually stayed somewhere....and he knew why really even if he didn't like thinking about it. Cole. Cole had a sort of...soothing effect. He had a way of calming him down and settling the itch of paranoia when it came. He had a way of just looking it and making his heart stop racing in the worst sort of way and race in another...that he again was trying really hard not to fucking think about. He told himself its because he had a purpose and the pull of that purpose was stronger and he had to do it because he couldn't fail. And that was why. He had to make sure Cole was going to be useful enough. A proper wolf. Protected by a pack that would respect him for it. That was why. Yes. That.
But back to the home point. He knew this was....just making a bigger mess and again he was so fucking weak to Cole that he couldn't even stop it even if he wanted to and lets be real he didn't fucking want to any time Cole was near him. Like tonight. He got home...home being their current camp grounds in the woods and he smelled like old books and dust but there was also that warm fucking vanilla and lavender and just Cole and it pulled Hotch in. He hadn't been able to stop himself while Cole had turned his back to him to settle into the tent. He wrapped his arms around his waist and nuzzled his nose into the top of his head and breathed in that scent of his that both soothed and enticed him and it had been over from there. Hands clawing at clothes to come off, fingers exploring, mouths clashing, tongues tasting, air being forgotten despite how desperately their bodies demanded and needed it as they came together in their need and pleasure.
Perfect. It was always so perfect. Cole was always so perfect and it was all he could think about once it was over...this round anyway. There was...always at least two it seemed. At least. Hotch and been trying to slow the roll seeing as Cole had to work and his poor fucking hips needed to be able to function for that. But in the inbetween of the first whirl wind he drew Cole close...not that he had to really tug Cole to himself. The young man had comfortably laid himself beside him and Hotch closed his eyes and wrapped an arm around him and turned his nose in against his soft green locks while they rested. His glow of their shared passions settling and he nearly drifted when Cole started pulling away. Those obsidian hues opened, dark lashes raising from strong cheeks. He thought maybe he was just trying to get comfortable. Sometimes he did that, moved around. Well not sometimes all the fucking time but Hotch didn't really mind it anymore.
But he didn't return and when he didn't and he put space between them when Cole was usually fucking koala after intimacy...well that had the warning bells going off in head. At first he simply stared, and then he started to frown and sat up slowly...had he....had he come onto him and Cole hadn't really wanted it? He had reacted normally, he had reached for him and grabbed at him and clawed at him as he took him in nothing shy of normal....but...maybe he read it wrong somewhere. Or maybe he did something wrong to him...some how. Maybe he hurt him and off his thoughts spiraled and his heart started to race because there it was the shoe was dropping and he was a fucking monster. He made Cole pull away and he was a Gods damn monster.
"Did....Did I hurt you?" He asked, voice low and gruff, scared honestly that he had. "I didn't mean to. You...you seemed like you were enjoying me...I d-....I didn't mean to hurt you. I'm sorry. I'm sorry if I hurt you....I'm sorry." He was starting to sound like a broken record and he had to clench his jaws together to silence the words of more "i am sorry, i am sorry, i am sorry." that he was so sure would just pathetically continue and just..Fuck. Fuck fuck fuck. "Cole I'm sorry." There we go again.
Cole knew he shouldn’t have pulled away without saying anything. He knew Hotch would worry because...Cole wasn’t stupid. Cole knew Hotch tried to be gentle and kind to him, knew the man worried about hurting him. He hadn’t, never did. Even when the man’s teeth sank into his skin it only inspired more passion in him. It only served to make him want more, make his body scream with desire. He knew Hotch cared though, knew the man feared hurting him and Cole tried to show him the things he did were good things, tried to show him in the way he lingered afterwards, tried to show it in gentle kisses he left against Hotch’s jaw.
Hotch had done nothing wrong, everything was perfect with him. He felt nothing but safe with Hotch and he didn’t understand why that made him feel disgusting. He had never liked sex before but he liked this and...he wasn’t sure why that felt so wrong? He didn’t feel the same sort of disgust with himself that he did when he was with strangers but he still felt wrong, felt his stomach churning. Whore. Whore. Whore. He was filth and he was poisoning Hotch and he fucking knew it and he was evil for doing it. He was awful for finding comfort in someone else, for using someone like he was Hotch.
Except he wasn’t using Hotch. If they had never started this strange whirlwind of a thing Cole wouldn’t have left, he would have been happy as things had been. Now that it had started though? Now that it was something Cole craved? He felt perfect in the ways Hotch touched him, he felt...beautiful? Hotch only ever looked at him with such genuine want and desire, the other man wanted to assure his pleasure and it made him feel so wonderful and he was awful for it. He wasn’t using Hotch but he felt like he was, felt like he was being selfish in letting the other man have him, in letting himself have Hotch.
Cole hadn’t even noticed Hotch sitting up, hadn’t even notice he was speaking at first because his thoughts were so far away. It sounded, for a moment, like the other man was talking to him through water but once his words registered Cole felt terrible for making Hotch feel as though this was his fault. Hotch’s apologies felt like daggers to his heart. It was hard to turn his head so that he could look at Hotch, but he did it anyway. It was a slow painful sort of thing, but Cole did turn to look at Hotch though he found himself glancing away when he was met with such worry. His throat felt like someone was closing their fingers around it, like he couldn’t breathe and after a moment Cole forced himself to swallow his own feelings because Hotch didn’t deserve to think he had done something awful.
”You didn’t hurt me,” he murmured. ”I’m fine I promise.” He absolutely wasn’t fine, but by some miracle of the god’s Cole kept his voice even, though he found his jaw clenching all over again when he spared a glance down at himself. He was...naked and as the glow of intimacy faded he felt nothing but disgust at the sight of his body, mangled and scarred and filthy. He wanted to ask for his clothes, wanted to ask Hotch to help find them because honestly he wasn’t sure where they’d ended up but after a moment he shifted to grab at one of his larger blankets, pulling it over his shoulders and wrapping himself in it so that he could...hide away.
He felt awful because even in his shame Cole wanted to crawl over to Hotch, wanted to curl up against him and find the warmth he didn’t deserve. He drew in a slow and shaky breath, making sure his lungs were good and full before he pushed it back out through his nose just as slowly. ”I’m fine.” Cole was mostly talking to himself, as awful as it was for him not to continue to reassure Hotch but he couldn’t...There were things Cole needed to tell him but he was terrified of doing that. He was terrified of picking at the wound he had reopened, terrified that Hotch would just...stick his hands into it and rip it open wider. ”Everything is fine. You’re fine. L-Long day you know?” Flimsy explanation but honestly Cole wasn’t used to talking about the things he felt? He did it with Lonny often enough but that too was hard. He was used to burying these sorts of things, used to ignoring them but it seemed he couldn’t really ignore this any longer, even as he tried to drown the nasty thoughts, dried to quiet them because he didn’t want to do this right now. He didn’t want to be...like this in front of Hotch.
Hotch didn't feel like he was being used. He had been used before and he knew the difference...now. Because of Cole he knew the difference. It was hugely contrasting. What they did together? Did not feel disgusting and filthy and horrifying. It didn't make him whimper in fear and it didn't make him shrink away to a safer place to lock himself up in his head to keep himself safe. He had moments still..unable to help it really, when he had small feelings of panic, but whenever Cole noticed he was always so painfully sweet to him. He appreciated it just so fucking much. Cole was so Gods damn perfect he didn't know what to do with himself. He didn't know how he deserved to touch him. But while he was here with him he just couldn't stop doing it whether he deserved it or not.
He could only hope in turn that Cole didn't think he was using him either. There were so many fucking people in the world that he could do that with you know? And....though he hadn't said it. He thought it was shamefully fucking obvious that Cole was the first person had....gotten intimate with. Really intimate. Like the first time he actually had sex with and enjoyed it. He had been so fucking stupid and slow and unsure the first time they had sex for it not to be obvious. He hadn't even known what the fuck to do and when they had rolled their hips together before marrying their bodies he had come in but fucking moments and that just...he didn't think people normally did that. He wasn't so ignorant to know that what he done hadn't been impressive. But he hadn't been able to help it. There had just been so much and it had been so fucking overwhelming and Cole had felt so good and made him feel so safe with being with him that he hadn't been able to stop himself.
Luckily Cole hadn't held it against him. He had, again, been so fucking sweet to him, so eager to continue and it just...never stopped from there. It hadn't been very long since then, but they were like gods damn magnets usually since that night at the tavern. And each time they came together Hotch was always so sure to do what Cole liked, anything he learned that he seemed to like. So....the fact that he was pulling away from him was just...it was....it felt wrong. It was not like Cole. Again he usually clung to him and slowly Hotch had gotten comfortable with it. Not exactly....less gruff? But less stiff? If that made sense. His body wasn't as tense when ever Cole cuddled up to him, he didn't feel tense and then slowly had to wind down. He looked forward to the moment he simply got to lay with him. Enjoy the after glow with him. Play with his hair. Glide his hand up and down the softness of his skin, the sweet upward dip of his hip from his waist. He....enjoyed those things. He appreciated those things....and now he couldn't and because he couldn't he just really felt like he had done something wrong because it had always seemed so important to Cole. He always seemed so happy to be able to do it with him.
Even before he answered, he was shifty. His gaze unable to hold him and Hotch felt the tension seeping into his muscles, his fucking bones because Gods he had to have done something. He was the fucking worst. He was a Gods damn monster and he had...he had done something wrong to Cole and that above all else seemed like the most unforgivable sin in the world and Hotch usually wasn't one to give a shit about sinning but that was one he simply could not cross. And the fact that he felt like he had? His stomach rolled and he felt sick with himself. Then he watched as Cole looked down at himself and....he pulled from his moment of self hate to analyze that look. He seemed...disgusted? Had he felt.....disgusted? Doing this with him? Had he done something to make him feel like...he had taken advantage? But his gaze seemed to linger at his scars and if it were that then..."Stop. Don't. Don't look like that." His voice gruff, stern, but not...angry. He just had seen Cole look at himself like that before and he hated it. He hated how Cole seemed to get so disgusted with his scars. "S'nothing wrong with you." He said after a small pause and in that ignored how Cole seemed to try and tell him that he was fine. He wasn't fine. And he wasn't sure if he was disgusted with something they had done or just...himself.
Either way it still made him feel sick because Cole didn't deserve either of it. Any of it. "You don't want to be a fucking koala then?" He asked after a moment, giving a small snort because it was...some what his way of being worried but also longing for Cole being that koala he usually was. He wanted him curled back up to him. He wanted to try and make it better and was praying to the Gods he really hadn't been the one to make him pull away. Usually, if it had been anyone else, Hotch would have left it. He wasn't good at this shit. But it was Cole and that made all the fucking difference it seemed, especially if he was acting this way after intimacy. It just really really didn't feel right and because of that it nagged at him until finally he was forced to say something. "I call bullshit." He finally blurted after a moment. "Long days don't stop you from being a clinger monkey. Long days don't give you that look on your face."
Cole could never feel disgusted with Hotch, could never fault him for the way he sometimes stumbled during their more intimate moments. The first time had been a fumbly sort of thing on both ends. Obviously Cole knew what he needed to do during those moments, he had spent enough time doing it to know, but Hotch had been very different. Normally he wanted to rush through it, wanted it to be fucking over and while usually his wish wasn’t granted he tried. He hadn’t wanted to do that with Hotch, he had wanted to touch him and really feel the other man. He’d found he so loved the way the other wolf felt beneath his fingers and palms. He’d come to love the feeling of dark strands intertwined in his fingers and while sometimes he pulled at those strands a bit harder than he meant to Cole was always certain to make sure he stroked them gentler later. Cole was always absolutely certain to be gentle with parts of Hotch that he was rough with, certain to kiss at any scratches he left against the man’s skin or to simply run his fingers over them.
Disgusted with Hotch...he could never be. Himself? Yes. Absolutely disgusted with himself he could be and he knew now was the worst time for it. It was the worst time for those thoughts to pour into his mind because he didn’t want to be like this in front of Hotch. He didn’t deserve to think he had done something wrong because none of this was his fault. At least not...the filth Cole felt cling to his skin wasn’t Hotch’s fault. He hadn’t put it there. Cole had. He had done it himself over and over and he couldn’t wash it off no matter how hard he scrubbed and no matter how hard he just wished for it to go away. He didn’t want it, had never wanted it, but he got it nonetheless.
He couldn’t help but grimace at Hotch’s words, knowing the other man’s eyes had followed his own down his body. It wasn’t like Hotch needed to be the most observant man to notice the way Cole had practically cringed at the sight of himself, but his jaw still clenched so fucking tightly when he was told not to look at himself like that, not to look at himself with disgust burned into his features. Hotch thought there was nothing wrong with him and Cole knew he believed those words, he felt awful for letting him believe it, felt his stomach flip when they hit his ears. ”There is something wrong with me.” He couldn’t stop the words from coming out, and once they’d slipped out Cole only tightened his blanket around himself.
Cole felt bad that he couldn’t will himself to return to Hotch because he knew that the other man enjoyed their closeness after intimacy just as much as he did. At first Cole had noticed how stiff Hotch had been in those moments, how rigid he would become even as he tried to stroke at his hair. It hadn’t completely gone away, but Cole felt Hotch relax against him faster recently, felt the tension that coiled in the other man’s body unwind quicker and the younger man knew Hotch appreciated their contact. He appreciated it even after it had lost its electric charge and Cole desperately wanted to return to the other man and curl against him and just drown out the buzzing of flies in his head. The wound was open though, torn open all over again and he wished he had kept his mouth shut. If he’d never talked to Lonny maybe things would have been able to stay the same? Maybe he wouldn’t be fucking ruining it?
Just like with Lonny, Cole didn’t want to talk about it. He had...wanted to talk to Hotch about how he felt but not like this, not while he was naked and felt sick to his stomach at the sight of himself. He didn’t want to have that conversation like this because what if...what if it made things worse? Doing it like this felt so unfair because if Hotch did find him to be vile it would be made even worse in those precious moments after intimacy. Cole knew he shouldn’t ever let this happen in the first place because Hotch didn’t deserve filth and even if Lonny had said he’d have no way of “feeling” it...Cole felt like that was a lie. He felt like he had been used so much that it didn’t matter and Hotch would just know.
He couldn’t help but grimace as he was called out. Cole was normally such a good fucking liar but not tonight, not about this, not when his emotions were too raw and so when Hotch told him flat out that he didn’t believe his bullshit excuses Cole’s gaze moved to his lap, staring at the blanket he had curled around himself. Sooo interesting it was. Not really. It just served to keep him from having to look at Hotch because he knew the other man was watching him with that ever dark gaze and he didn’t like it. There was no way for Cole to hide from it though, not with how small this tent was and so he just stared at his own lap, pulling at his bottom lip with his teeth.
Eventually he did look up, forced his eye back to Hotch and for a moment he did nothing but stare at the other man, gaze searching. Cole wasn’t sure what he was looking for, wasn’t sure what he expected to see written in those rugged features but whatever it was he didn’t find it. ”Why...do you let me stay?” Words so soft that if they weren’t in the middle of the forest with nothing but the sounds of crickets outside it was unlikely Hotch even would have heard them.
Cole knew Hotch cared for him outside of sex, knew that there was value in their strange sort of relationship but the other man wasn’t much for words and Cole only had his actions to go off of. Unfortunately Cole...Cole needed words, just one? Anything that he could use to soothe himself with, he wanted it desperately, wanted just one fucking thing he could use to shield himself from the roar of his own self-loathing.
The older wolf cursed himself internally as Cole didn't seem to react well to him telling him to not look at himself like that. He hadn't at all been trying to be an asshole. He had been trying to....assure him he was perfect. That there was nothing wrong with him or those scars and he....he liked him the way he was. But of course Hotch wasn't a normal fucking human being to which something that was painfully obvious to even himself and it pissed himself off if only, as anything else, when it came to Cole. Any other fucking person on this planet and he would not give a fucking damn or bat a fucking eye about or it. Think on it or acknowledge someone was having a fucking fit about something. He didn't care about people beyond getting mad when someone did something wrong or stupid because yeah yeah he didn't like scum bags. He might not like that lady that just got her purse robbed from her but he sure as fuck would run down the robber and beat the snot out of him and return the purse to the woman and then....just beat sticks. He liked justice. That was what he liked.
Back to the point though, he wasn't trying to be an asshole and he hated himself in moments like these where his branch to trying to be....good to Cole seemed to blow up. He hated himself that he knew the right words to say but some how they couldn't connect from his brain to his tongue. So fucking simple. "You are beautiful, Cole, scars or no scars you are beautiful." But he couldn't say it. He couldn't fucking say it and it was frustrating and it was frustrating that he felt like he should say it and why couldn't he just fucking know it because clearly he thought so??? Had he not been fucking obvious about it? He didn't look at Cole like he was meat when he was changing or something but sometimes he found himself looking to just admire. Sometimes he found himself reaching him in passing and drawing his hand up his spine while Cole was struggling to get on his shirt. You didn't do that to someone you didn't care for, find attraction to. Think of in a negative way.
It was frustrating and he swore to the Gods he didn't know how he wasn't having an epileptic fucking seizure right the fuck now or some blood vessel was bursting in his brain over how fucking frustrating this was and how sick he felt combine because something was fucking wrong here and he didn't know what and he couldn't know if Cole didn't tell him and he couldn't try and figure out how to fix it if he could fucking fix it until he knew. He wanted to shake his Gods damn shoulders like he was a Gods damn gumball machine to see if the fucking candy would just come the fuck rattling out. He closed his eyes, because getting angry was nothing that was going to help him here. Letting his frustrating turn to something familiar like anger was never good effect with Cole....and he was trying very fucking hard these days not to freak out in front of the other man when his emotions got too fucking overwhelming for him to handle or navigate.
Finally though, he spoke. Something wrong with him? Dark eyes opened and he frowned even harder because...was he sick? Did he feel sick? Was he keeping away because he felt sick? Did he worry about him getting sick? Did he have fucking medicine for a fucking cold on him? He had some...herbs and shit but...Fuck. This was getting out of fucking hand really. And he waited, for a few more blessed fucking moments for Cole to try and spit it the fuck out and just when he was about to open his mouth to tell him he needed to just fucking tell him what was wrong because he was not a god damn mind reader or some fucking magic eight ball with all the gods damn answers--Cole spoke up again. This time barely even a whisper and the question he asked had his blood running cold. Had a stupid look crossing his face as he simply stared a moment before his lips thinned and his jaw clenched together and those obsidian hues dropped and glanced slowly from spot to spot in the tent like there was a mother fucking art gallery up in this small ass bitch and he was a fucking twat strollin around to look at all the doodles.
"You....are...my responsibility." He sounded like a twat that was for sure. He sounded like a god damn asshole even if there was no real...harsh bit to the words despite how he was having a fucking hard time enunciating words right at the fucking moment because....why Cole? Why the actual fuck would you ask him something so fucking hard????? He didn't know how to fucking feelings with words and you literally had to ask the one question that he didn't know how to try and fenagle around in not sounding like a fucking user trashlord. He didn't know how not to be fucking literal in this one. He just....didn't. Fuck. Fuck. Just. Why the fuck..
Cole knew that Hotch wasn’t a mind reader and it wasn’t really fair for him not to be blunt with Hotch because he knew that there was no way that he could piece together the things running through his head. Hotch was very observant, that was something Cole had come to learn but he also knew that Hotch struggled with words. Well, he struggled with words of praise and kindness. That barrier seemed to come down when they were laying together, when they were swept up in the heat of passion Hotch said sweeter things.They weren’t always the most romantic things in the world but they were things Cole had never really heard before. He was used to hearing...awful things when he was with someone like this but Hotch never said awful things to him. Hotch only said things that made him feel good.
He knew Hotch was getting frustrated with his inability to fucking speak and Cole wished he could find his words, get to the fucking point because Hotch didn’t deserve the runaround but Cole was...scared? He was scared of what effect his words would have and as frustrating as it was for Hotch for him to dance around the issue Cole wasn’t sure he was ready to talk about it. Would he ever be ready though? Honestly Cole doubted it, he doubted he would ever really be ready to talk about things that plagued him in moments like this. He didn’t want Hotch to be angry with him, but trying to clarify what he meant about there being something wrong with him just made him feel like he was suffocating.
Cole was growing frustrated with himself too, another thing to throw into the tornado of negative thinking spinning around in his mind. He wanted to make it stop but he didn’t really know how and he just found himself fidgeting anxiously. He needed to find his words, needed to say what he meant and not play run around with it but he was so fucking scared to do that. He was scared because there had been people who had known and those people had treated him with such disgust but they had still used him, they knew he was filth and they still used him. Hotch didn’t use hm and Hotch didn’t know he was ruined and it felt unfair that he didn’t know. Surely Hotch had some vague idea as to...those sorts of things or assumptions? Cole wasn’t as reactive as Hotch could be during intimacy, but there were obviously things he struggled with. His clinginess afterwards was...a tell in its own way? Perhaps?
He wasn’t sure what he had expected Hotch to say to his question, wasn’t sure what answer he was looking for. To be told he was Hotch’s responsibility...that wasn’t the answer he had been searching for and for a moment Cole was hurt, for a moment he was crushed and his eye moved from the other man’s face to stare back down at the blanket in his lap. Hotch let him stay because he was...his responsibility. Surely having sex with him wasn’t part of that? There was...there was affection in the ways Hotch touched him, in the way the other man pressed his face to his hair every so often. Those weren’t...responsibilities were they? That wasn’t part of Hotch teaching him to be a werewolf was it? Cole...Cole didn’t know and for a moment he felt his breath shake, tears stinging in his eye. ”Then...why…” He had to pause, pause to take in a quivery breath because he didn’t want to cry. It made Hotch uncomfortable when he cried and these weren’t happy tears and so he tried to bite them back, teeth meeting his cheek harder than they probably needed to honestly.
Cole fell silent, letting his words die on his lips. He didn’t want to think that Hotch only let him stay out of obligation because he knew that couldn’t be the entirety of it and he knew it was unfair of him to ask Hotch something so loaded. Again he took a steadying breath, inhaling nice and slow through his nose before breathing out. He was twitchy, shifting about beneath his blanket. He couldn’t look at Hotch when he spoke next, ”do I feel used?” His words bled with shame, but he forced himself to ask anyway even if he couldn't look at Hotch this time. He didn’t want to because surely he would disgust on the other man’s face.
Lonny had said Hotch wouldn’t know. Lonny had told him there was no way for Hotch to know about the things he had done unless Cole told him but...he couldn’t shake the fear. Hotch never acted like he felt...bad? Odd? But Cole wasn’t sure Hotch knew what...something good felt like? As awful as that was. He knew people had hurt Hotch, and when people hurt you like that there was no focusing on how that person “felt.” It was just terror and wishing it was over soon. Hotch had never reacted negatively to the way he felt, he seemed to find pleasure with him easily enough but Cole was scared that he’d realize that he was missing out on something better? Gods Cole knew it was far more complicated than that, knew that Hotch wouldn’t just abandon him because he knew intimacy was hard for Hotch but he just….paranoia was a strange sort of beast that wouldn’t fucking stop nagging at him, wouldn’t stop picking at old wounds and tearing them right the fuck back open.
It was then that the tears came, that gnawing on his cheek didn't serve as a good enough deterrent and he felt them in the corner of his eye, felt the steady trickle of them along his cheek and Cole grimaced, dabbing at his face with his blanket.
It was easier to say sweeter things. As sweet as they were going to get anyway, when they were tangled up in each other. He supposed maybe that was kind of shitty and sometimes he found himself utterly embarrassed by the few things he said later when he had time to think about it, but it seemed to make Cole happy and it was the fucking truth so he tried hard to swallow the pill of embarrassment. It was a work in fucking progress that shouldn't keep progressing because it wasn't going to be fair in the end. He was going to have to leave and each time he said it, it felt less real in his head because leaving meant leaving Cole here with a pack after they sorted him to be a proper fucking werewolf. It was for the best though. His life was violet. It was dangerous. But even as thought about it sometimes it felt so fucking empty like a picture in history that you knew happened but you felt no connection to it because it was the past and you were in the present. And that was wrong. It was wrong because it couldn't be an alternate course there could never be. He had to keep reminding himself of that and it was getting hard and harder to do and think about even with that nagging voice in the back of his fucking head.
But he had to. He had to.
He kept telling himself though, despite that he had to, that right now he didn't and right now....right now...was right now. Such a fucked off thing. He was a fucking off thing though. So fucked off and Cole didn't even know and he didn't deserve this and he should be a fucking dick but he couldn't. Not over stuff like this he couldn't push Cole away when it came to stuff like this because that was so fucking wrong and that was the line Hotch could not cross because again unforgivable fucking sin that even he abide by in not crossing. But it left him stuck in a rock and a hard place because he couldn't push him away any other time either because that would feel wrong too and he needed Cole close so he could fucking teach him how to fucking survive.. It was just...all fucked off.
And now he was sitting here in this fucking tent not sure what the fuck was going on and Cole was throwing riddles and asshole answered questions at him and he just....fucking Gods nothing was easy for him was it? Nothing could be served on a nice neat silver platter with some grade A fucking stake that you didn't need a fucking knife to cut through because it was just that fucking easy to bite into. Nothing was easy. Everything involved a knife he had to hack his mother fucking way through. Sadly, the shift in Cole's posture, watching the sadness roll over his smaller frame was the thing to simmer down his mood even if he was still a bit overwhelmed and just you know. Just a pinch frustrated. His tone, the way he spoke, he didn't have to see tears. Fuck it all he knew they were coming even as he sat there trying to breath and steady himself and just. Everything in him tensed. His fists tightened. Clenched and unclenched, and clenched again. Gods damn why with the tears? Why? He had talked to him about the mother fucking tears and he just....what the fuck was going on here? What had he done wrong? Aside from the stupid answer of his just...what the fuck wa---
Used? He froze again, that same stupid blank look swallowing up the hard expression on his scared face. Used? It echoed in mind and his eyes widened a moment, heart hammered and he hoped his hands to look down at his palms like they were the most vile fucking things on this planet because....he felt....used? And he had used those fucking hands of his and he had made Cole feel used with them and......Did it not matter? That Cole seemed to enjoy him? Was that not enough? Was he missing something? Was Cole...was he playing pretend because he felt like he needed to? Had he fucked up somewhere and made him think he needed to do something like that because holey fucking fuck he had thought this was all fucking mutual here. Perfectly mutual and pleasant and---he felt like he was going to be fucking sick. Gods he felt like he was going to be fucking sick in ten, nine, eight...
He was scuffling out of the tent, only managing to get the stupid zippers undone enough to pop half his fucking body out the gods damn thing before the bile rolled up his fucking throat and had him shaking as he heaved and hacked and couched, the color all but gone really from his usually tanned skin and perspiration was a thing to quickly form anew. Gods he was so fucking sick. He was so fucking awful and he had made Cole feel used. He was a Gods damn fucking monster.
Cole had forced his gaze back to Hotch when the man had fallen unusually silent. Quiet wasn’t something that was uncommon from him but this wasn’t the almost calm sort of quiet that they often shared. Even with his emotions and worries running wild in his head Cole could feel the tension coming from Hotch, could feel it filling the tent and Cole knew he wasn’t being fair at all. He was being so unfair and so awful and he knew the other man was worried he had done something wrong and he hadn’t. He hadn’t done anything wrong, nothing Hotch had done was wrong. Cole felt that his liking it was wrong, that it was a shameful sort of thing that he shouldn’t like doing with Hotch but...he enjoyed it and it was wonderful with Hotch.
He watched wordless as the color drained from Hotch’s face, watched as the tense expression on his features became something else, something empty but there was fear in his eyes and Cole…”...Hotch?” His name a mere whisper on Cole’s lips because he knew something was horribly wrong, he had said something awful and he wondered if he had...no he didn’t wonder. Cole knew he had triggered something awful in him, and guilt twisted in his stomach as he did nothing but stare at Hotch. The other man didn’t look angry just horrified, horrified as he looked at his hands as if they were awful fucking things and Cole wondered if Hotch thought that he had meant…
Did Hotch think that Cole had meant that he felt used by him? Was that the thought his question invoked in him? Cole felt his own eye widening, horrified that his words might have had that meaning, horrified that Hotch would think that Cole felt used by him. Used was not how he felt. For the first time Cole didn’t feel used by someone. It was freeing in a way, but he also felt conflicted on how he felt about it, conflicted even after he had spoken to Lonny and even after Lonny had assured him that if Hotch cared he wouldn’t think of him as something disgusting.
The tension broke like glass shattering and as Hotch scrambled towards the zipped entrance of the tent Cole’s head snapped to watch him, and he felt his heart fucking drop when he heard Hotch throwing up. Gods he was throwing up. Cole had said something that awful that he was vomitting. Cole felt frozen, unsure of what he should do. For the moment his own worries were forgotten because he had said something so awful that it had made Hotch actually sick and he had never seen Hotch’s face twist the way it had moments before it had happened. Cole wasn’t sure what he needed to do to help though, if touching him was the right thing to do or if it would just...make things worse. It would probably make things worse but Cole still shifted to crawl towards Hotch. When he was close enough and could comfortable do it Cole reached out to run his hand down the man’s back. ”I’m sorry. Oh my god I’m so sorry Hotch. I’m sorry. I’m sorry.” He was so fucking sorry and Cole could have kept repeating it but he forced himself to stop, forced himself to lift his other hand to wipe at his eye as he...tried so hard to soothe the other man. ”It’s not your fault. I promise it’s not your fault. It’s not you. I don’t feel like you use me I promise I don’t. I promise. I’m sorry. I’m so sorry Hotch.” Suppose this was what he got for beating around the bush, suppose this was what Cole got for being a fucking pussy about his feelings but right now he just wanted Hotch to understand that none of this was his fault. He desperately needed Hotch to see that and while it felt wrong to touch him, felt wrong to touch him with hands that Cole felt were toxic he...couldn’t stop. He wouldn’t stop unless he was told to, or Hotch made it obvious his attempt at comfort wasn’t working, if it was making it worse.
Hotch couldn't even hear Cole say his name. There was nothing but the sick fear of having done something wrong, that he had crossed the line and he had become the very thing some way some how that he had been trying so fucking hard to not be. Logically, logically there was no way in the care he took with Cole, the care he gave him and how he did actually care about him but it was such a huge fucking fear that even if Cole told him before that sex with him felt good, that it felt perfect for him too it was like a pin being taken out of a gods damn grenade and you couldn't think yourself out of that fucking thing other than to throw it and pray. Except he really couldn't do that right now he apparently was going to be the dumb mother fucker that just stared at it and allowed it to blow him the fuck up because he couldn't logic it. He couldn't allow the echos of Cole's voice in his head telling him sex had been good with him and use that as the hand in which people tossed the grenade away with. It blew the fuck up and it came out as bile until his stomach was fucking empty.
He dry heaved, tears stinging at the corners of his eyes for how hard and how quick and how violently he had gotten sick. Fuck. Fuck this was a mess this was a gods damn mess and he was a fucking monster and he had missed something so fucking vital and he was so fucking selfish and fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck. There were but two words that could only echo against his skull at the moment and that was "Fuck" and "monster." He hated himself, he so hated himself in that moment because Cole had said it. He made him feel used and he hadn't even realized for honestly a while that Cole was touching him, and sadly his words went on deaf ears and he felt so fucking badly that Cole was sitting here trying to sooth him and he was so fucking disgusting but still Cole was trying to comfort him and he just....he didn't deserve it.
He shook after it seemed to stop, fingers curling in the dirt and he stared sightless at the mess he made of whatever the fuck it was he had eater earlier he honestly didn't fucking know and later he would made an attempt to move the fucking tent away from it...probably after Cole left because surely he was going to leave him now and just fuck fuck fuck fuck he had messed up so fucking badly. He couldn't leave. He couldn't. He needed to make sure he was going to be okay apparently more than one fucking way now but no no no no he didn't deserve to be around him. He needed to go home. He needed to go back to that fang banging friend and that vampire that looked after him and he....he had to write to them or some fucked off thing to let them know just how fucking imperative it was for Cole to have someone teach him so that no fucking wolf ever hurt him or no one else for that fucking matter.
"I'm sorry, I'm sorry. I didn't know. I didn't know. I didn't mean to. I didn't know." He felt fucking disgusting. He felt like his spine was crawling with infestation and he couldn't....he couldn't stay here like this he couldn't sit here hovering over fucking puke and so, broken and stuck in his own head out of the fucking overwhelming shock of it all he robotically got up and started, with out clothes mind you, toward the pond he had made camp near. He needed water. He needed to scrub at his fucking skin. And maybe he just needed to fucking drown because he was a fucking monster and he deserved that.
This was wrong this was so wrong this wasn’t what Cole wanted. This wasn’t what he had meant to happen and he felt a little sick himself but he swallowed that down because they couldn’t both be messes. He and Hotch couldn’t take turns throwing up and Cole...Cole was good at caring for people. Even when he was terrified he was good at putting it aside to take care of someone, good at pushing his own emotions away just for the while to make sure someone else was okay and he needed to do that now. He needed to shut everything down for just awhile and it was sad that he was good at doing that. He had done it so often at home, shut the terror off long enough to tend to his mother or long enough to make himself invisible just long enough for things to blow over.
He had made a mistake. He had said something awful and he knew this was his fault. He knew Hotch was hurting because of him and he was trying so hard to help but Hotch didn’t seem to appreciate the comfort he was trying to give. Cole wasn’t stupid enough to think that everyone needed comfort in the same ways. His mother had appreciated touches and kind words and favors but he wasn’t sure how to comfort Hotch so all he could do was try. It wasn’t working though it wasn’t fucking working because he felt Hotch shaking under his hand, heard him retching and he heard the splatter of bile hitting the ground. Cole wasn’t helping. He was making it worse he was making it awful and he felt so helpless because this was his fault and he couldn’t make it better.
Cole flinched as Hotch shifted away from him, and he thought for a moment that the man was going to snap at him to stop but the words that came from him were...not words of anger and again Cole felt so fucking sick with himself. His touch was making it worse and he knew it would. Cole knew he wasn’t going to be able to help but he wanted to but he didn’t know how to make this better. He didn’t know how and-
Hotch was...crawling out of the tent and Cole watched him for only a second because he needed to follow. The man wasn’t like his mother and Cole doubted he was going to...harm himself if he wasn’t there but what if? What if Hotch decided to hurt himself because of something he had said? Cole needed to follow him and so he clutched his blanket around himself again, pulling it over his shoulders as he followed Hotch out of the tent, stumbling just a bit before he managed to catch his footing. ”Hotch!” He was more panicked than anything else, terrified that Hotch was going to do something awful to himself. ”Stop. Stopstopstop.” He wasn’t grabbing for his boot though, the boot that Cole knew he kept his knife in, he was walking towards the pond they had made camp by but Cole was still fucking terrified that he was going to go in and refuse to come out and he just-
”Please stop. Stay with me. Please stay with me Hotch I’m sorry please.” He was begging through frantic tears, holding his blanket around his shoulders with one hand while the other reached out to grab desperately at Hotch’s arm.
It honestly wasn't either of their faults when it came down to it. Cole was just trying to express himself and being that the were both pretty fucking awful at it, shit sometimes happened. Hotch just didn't know how the fuck to deal with it at the moment because he didn't know what was going on was one great fuck up being that his mind was just....a bit fractured at the moment. He hadn't heard a damn thing Cole had said which didn't help. Not at all, and all he could feel was this....was it odd to say a whirl wind in the center of calm sort of feeling? On the outside he looked fairly calm despite his pale appearance and the sheen that coated his skin from activities not at all fun for once and all he could think was that he was a gods damn monster.
How fucking awful. He was fucking awful. He had done something awful and he just...he didn't know what else to do and some how dunking himself in fucking pond water seemed to make sense. No he wasn't actually going to hurt himself but he just...needed to sit in water. For whatever reason he just needed to and he needed to scratch at his itchy feeling skin and just. Fuck. Everything was fucked. He hadn't even realized that Cole was coming after him, again not even hearing his pleading until Cole reached to grab his arm which....of course didn't go down exactly smoothly either becaaaauuse the moment he felt something touch him he jerked, and when he jerked he fucking lost balance and fell.
You think someone would be concerned walking around naked, falling naked but nope. Even if his mind weren't a little woo-hoo at the moment just nope. But there he was and he only grunted when he back on his ass from the twist he made in his body to try and prevent himself to falling on his gods damn hip. At least he got something some what right but he grit his teeth as his hands caught himself so that is spine didn't hit the earth too. Just his fucking ass and tailbone and just. Fuck. He spine arched some, eyes closed as he road through the short spurt of pain before he bottled it all the fuck down because he had lived through far worse shit then falling on his gods damn ass.
Once his eyes opened however and they landed on Cole again he bent his knees, raised his hands to rack through his hair, not caring about the dirt they brought with them as he shook his head. "I'm sorry. I'm sorry. I'm sorry." Apparently he had reached that broken fucking record stage. Glory be. Try sticking a quarter in it and maybe it'd flip a fucking page.
Cole knew his words weren’t reaching Hotch. Cole knew the place he was all too well, knew that strange disconnected sort of panic where everything just sort of shut down for awhile. He experienced it often enough, went to somewhere far away when things became too much but seeing Hotch in that place made his heart fucking ache because it was his fault that he was there, it was all Cole’s fault. He should have talked to Hotch sooner, should have approached this when he’d felt it starting to seep in when he was around the other man. His presence had been a thing of comfort, something to make the nasty thoughts go away but...it couldn’t last forever and he had been selfish in not talking to Hotch sooner. Selfish so selfish and Hotch was hurting because of it.
He didn’t expect Hotch to stop honestly, if his words weren’t reaching him it was unlikely that his touch would either and Cole already knew that the other man wasn’t going to respond to it. If he did it would be to pull away. Except Hotch didn’t yank away from him as he tugged desperately at his arm, pleading and crying with him to just fucking stay. Instead he watched as Hotch wobbled on his feet, lost his balance and promptly fell on his bottom. More panic flared in Cole’s chest, burning hot like a fire that threatened to consume him. Was he hurt? Had he hurt himself when he’d fallen? Had he pulled to hard on Hotch? He felt awful for the pained hiss that hit his ears, but...Hotch had stopped.
Unlike Hotch there was no strange sort of calm that crept over Cole in this moment. Perhaps Hotch was the eye of the storm and Cole was the goddamn tornado because he was freaking out even if he knew he needed to ground himself so that he could help. This wasn’t Hotch’s fault and Cole just needed him to see that, and before he could stop himself Cole dropped down to his knees beside the older man. He was hesitant to touch him, hesitant to reach out and grab at his hands but he did it anyway, hardly caring that he was getting dirt on himself. He did care a bit when he felt his blanket slip off his shoulders, sliding down along his back to bunch up behind him, and despite the panic he felt Cole shivered because honestly it was cold outside.
”Hotch,” He tried so hard to keep his voice even, tried so hard not to let his tears interfere with the comfort he was trying to give, and as gently as he could Cole pulled Hotch’s hands away from his hair. ”Hotch listen. Please listen.” Just as slowly, just as hesitantly Cole moved one of his hands away from Hotch’s wrist, instead moving it to cup at his cheek, cup at him and try to turn the man’s face towards him. He wasn’t helping. Cole wasn’t helping he was making it worse and-
”I don’t feel like you use me. I promise. I promise. I kno-know you aren’t using me. You make me feel good. You make me feel so safe and good and I’m so sorry Hotch I’m sorry please listen.” Hotch just...Hotch was the only person who made him feel so good, the only person who touched him and it didn’t feel like acid. When Hotch pulled at his hair it didn’t feel like claws dragging against his scalp it was just...it was just Hotch. ”You make me feel so perfect Hotch I promise. I know you aren’t using me. I know I know.” Suppose now it was Cole’s turn to be the broken record, repeating himself over and over again on shaky breaths because he just wanted Hotch to listen. He needed Hotch to understand that this wasn’t his fault.
If he had a more.....with it sort of mind he would have bitched Cole out about being naked while outside. Not because he thought it was a shameful thing but because it was getting colder and apparently he was fucked off in he didn't stay as hot as a werewolf should and it was fucking concerning. It was just another reason he tried to get him to eat properly because he wondered if it was because he hadn't been eating properly and he just didn't know. He worried about those sort of things. But he wasn't all there and yes, he felt very...not at all there. He had but one simple thing he wanted to fucking do and he couldn't even do that. Couldn't even make it there because he had been thrown off enough to fall on his fucking ass and just. This was not his night was it? But then when ever was it really his night? He could think of a few recently honestly. But he didn't want to think about the good things right now. He didn't deserve to think about the good things and what if those good things had been a fucking sham?
He didn't jerk this time around when Cole reached to touch him, but he felt fucking filthy and though he didn't try to stop Cole out of fear of scaring him, he felt like he didn't even deserve that sort of simple touch from the other man. He didn't want to hear the things he said because clearly he had done something wrong and Cole was too fucking nice to tell him the truth and he had hurt him, he had made him feel used he had fucking hurt him. Made him feel like there was something wrong with him and he was just. A monster. That was the thing that kept coming round fucking circle.
Obsidian gaze was an unfocused thing even as Cole released one wrist to cup his cheek. He winced, if only because again he didn't deserve it. His touch he didn't deserve it and he didn't deserve how fucking gentle he was being toward him and he didn't deserve his words and just didn't fucking deserve it and he wanted to scream it at him until his throat was raw but that was effort and at the moment he felt so.....he felt so fucking weak too weak to even do that. Useless piece of shit. He was a piece of shit. He was never going to be anything more than that no matter how hard he made himself against the world. This just proved it. He couldn't have these things. He didn't belong with these sort of things. He had been ruined. Fucking ruined. He and been perfectly fucking fine with out it all but now he fucking knew he was a monster.
He hated it, he hated hearing the desperate little lies falling from Cole's lips. He hated it because it wasn't right. He had done something wrong and people who did things wrong didn't deserve to be comforted by their victim. "You're lying!" He snapped, brows furrowing though it was hardly angry it was...wild and desperate because he needed him to stop this and stop being so fucking kind to him. His own hands reached to cup Cole's face, jaw clenching, lips thinning a moment before they parted, words trying to form, "I hurt you, Gods fucking dammit! I hurt you. I don't need you to fucking lie to me about it. I know what the fuck I am Cole and I fucking hurt you and you need to stop fucking lying." His hands shook and when he realized he was shaking he let him go, balled them to fists before catching himself because surely that would scare Cole too and instead he gripped them into the earth, fingers digging snapping grass and roots.
"I made you feel used. I made you feel used you said it you feel used. I didn't even......" His voice broke at that and he turned his head from him, lips parting to let out a ragged shaky breath as he felt the same of fucking tears of all things form at his eyes. He didn't mean to. He didn't mean to. He hadn't wanted to be a monster. He hadn't wanted to be like her. But he was. He fucking was. "I didn't mean to hurt you." He near whispered. Fuck it. It was a thread on the wind. So light you might miss it.
Cole didn’t like that Hotch had flinched away from him, didn’t like that he...didn’t like that he wasn’t helping. He wanted to help, wanted to reassure Hotch that none of this was his fault but it wasn’t working. It as the other man started shaking? Cole’s stomach knotted, twisting into a sick little ball and he didn’t know what to do. He was trying to reassure him, desperately, but it wasn’t working Hotch didn’t believe him and when the man snapped at him it was Cole’s turn to flinch. Not out of fear, because he knew Hotch wouldn’t hit him, wouldn’t lash out at him, but there was such desperation in his voice that Cole had never heard from him before and it made him so upset. He felt sick. He wasn’t helping. Cole wasn’t helping.
Cole hadn’t expected Hotch to reach out to touch him, didn’t expect the man’s hands to cup at his face but he caught himself before he could flinch. If he flinched Hotch would pull away, Hotch would think he had hurt him and Cole didn’t want that he didn’t want to make this worse so he simply stared at the other man, vision a bit blurred because of his own tears. ”I’m not lying.” He wasn’t. He wasn’t lying he wasn’t lying he needed Hotch to know but the other man didn’t believe him and as Hotch’s hands fell from his face he let out a raggedy breath of his own, biting at his bottom lip because...it wasn’t his turn to cry? He had hurt Hotch. He had hurt him so badly and Cole never wanted to do that but he had.
He was awful. He was so fucking awful and he was hurting someone who had only done good for him and he was so fucking awful. Cole watched as Hotch’s hands balled into fists, watched his fingers curl in against his palms only to loosen, fall to the ground where he dug his fingers into the dirt and Cole knew it was because the other man didn’t want to frighten him. He had noticed that too, noticed that Hotch tried to curb his temper when it flared, but right now Cole felt as though he deserved to be screamed at. He deserved it for being so selfish and so awful.
Hotch’s words made him feel cold. Cold beyond just the chill of the night air, the wavery breath that followed them as Hotch looked away from him...the threat of tears that he didn’t even know the other man had chilled him to the bone. He’d never seen Hotch cry, and Cole felt like a monster. He never wanted this, never wanted to make Hotch feel like this. He had only ever made him feel good! Cole couldn’t let Hotch believe this was his fault, let him think that he was the reason Cole felt filthy. It wasn’t. Hotch made him feel perfect, perfect in the way the other man touched him, perfect in the ways their lips meshed and…
Slowly Cole lowered his hands to his lap, gaze following as he tugged his blanket over his legs, fingers clutching at it. ”It’s not you.” Cole said slowly, unsure if his words would even reach Hotch but...fuck he had to try. ”I fucked for money. A lot. All the time. Not even...money sometimes. Just...just because I wanted...I don’t know what I wanted.” He had to bite back the shame in his voice when he spoke, had to breath slow and even to keep from sobbing but this wasn’t Hotch’s fault, it wasn’t and he needed to know. ”I hated it.” He’d hated it so much, hated the way people touched him, hated the way people looked at him. He hated when people...took from him when he said no, when he tried to get away and they were always...stronger than him and Cole had to shake his head because he couldn’t think about it. He couldn’t. Instead he stared at his lap, unable to look at Hotch as he forced himself to continue in shamefully soft tones. ”I never...liked sex. It was always...scary and awful and it hurt and people did...things I didn’t like.”
He fell silent, just for a breath because he didn’t want to keep talking but he needed to. Hotch was crying, he knew he was and he couldn’t take it so after a moment Cole took another long and slow breath. ”I...thought it was supposed to be like that. It’s not. You...you showed me it’s not. It’s perfect with you Hotch. I feel so good when I’m...with you.” Desperation was leaking into his voice as he spoke, voice cracking just a bit. ”I’m a whore you know? I’m used and I’m...You make me feel so good but I don’t deserve it I’m disgusting and I’m ruining you. I know I am. I know I am. I’m sorry. I’m sorry. You never hurt me you make me feel so perfect. You make me not feel...disgusting but I don’t deserve it I don’t I don’t.” Cole’s words tumbled out of his mouth, falling off his lips in a messy sob and his fingers curled into the blanket on his lap. ”I don’t want you to think I’m disgusting. I just- I’m sorry. I’m sorry.” His eye closed, clenching shut because he was trying not to cry because this wasn’t about him but here he fucking was, sobbing naked in the grass and he couldn’t even look at the man that made him feel perfect, couldn’t look at the man that made him feel so light. He couldn’t because he was disgusting and he didn’t deserve to look at Hotch. He didn’t.
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