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Burning Calories

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Sometimes Monroe was scared for Nick's life.

Not in the police/detective sense, because in the years they'd been together as a couple, and the years before that when they were just friends, he trusted Nick implicitly. Sure, he went off the handle sometimes, but things always seemed to work out for him just fine. No, Monroe was worried about Nick having enough to eat to survive while Monroe was gone to a conference in Cleveland for two weeks.

Monroe didn't travel often, but the conference only happened every five years, so he had to make an exception. And even though Nick was in exceptional health, with great stamina, there was something in the Grimm genetics that, as soon as he hit 40, caused his cholesterol to boom. Monroe was helping him manage it by cooking all of Nick's meals, which he was happy to do. But even buying a second freezer and stuffing it full with dozens of home-cooked meals before he left might not be enough to last Nick and his wicked metabolism until Monroe was back.

After tipping the taxi and watching the lights disappear into the darkness, Monroe dragged his suitcase up the steps and quietly entered the house, expecting Nick to be asleep upstairs. But as he peeked around the doorway to the kitchen, he found Nick, head down on the table, snuffling quietly in the muted light. He was about to wake Nick, but as he reached for the light switch, Monroe realized that Nick had fallen asleep amidst a flurry of vegetables and groceries, his head resting on a cutting board sprinkled with chopped eggplant.

Monroe slowly pulled the knife away from Nick's grasp, then put a hand on his boyfriend's back.

"M'roe?"

While it was normal for Nick always to be aware of his surroundings, it was clear from the bags under his eyes that Nick hadn't been sleeping well. And when Nick stood to kiss Monroe, and Monroe let his hand slip into the back pocket of Nick's jeans, he could tell they were a bit looser. But instead of pointing it out, Monroe squeezed Nick, then took in the room around him.

"Mind telling me what happened to our kitchen, Grimm?" He flicked on the overhead light, figuring the flinch from brightness was punishment enough.

"I, uh," Nick said, then shook his head. "It's nothing. I just wanted to try something."

Monroe shook his head. "Nick, you know I love you, man. But we both know you're a disaster in the kitchen." With a small smile, he added, "And I think you've proven that yet again."

"I'll clean it up," Nick said as he stretched. Monroe found himself staring at the small swath of skin that appeared as Nick's t-shirt rode up, and all he wanted to do was drag Nick upstairs for some well-deserved alone time. "You can head upstairs and get ready for bed since you just traveled three timezones."

Monroe was about to take him up on it when he glanced around again at all the ingredients. "Wait," he said as the puzzle pieces fit together. "Were you trying to make me ratatouille?" All the ingredients for Monroe's favorite meal were there, and he found his stewpot perched on the end of the table with some vegetables already in it. "Nick?"

Monroe added, "Aww," and Nick blushed as he kissed his boyfriend again. As he deepened the kiss, he dragged his fingers down Nick's chest, then took Nick's hand into his. When they finally broke, Monroe dragged Nick up to the bedroom, stripped them both, and shared a hot shower before falling into bed together.

Much closer to sunrise than he expected, but still sated and happy, Monroe pulled Nick to his chest and threw the light blanket over them both. "You don't have to work, right?" he said as he glanced at the clock.

"No," Nick said, then yawned. "But Monroe?" he said, then looked into Monroe's eyes. "I'm kinda hungry."

Monroe sighed and dropped his forehead to Nick's chest. Sometimes he worried about Nick's life. And as Nick threw his head back, exposing the long expanse of creamy skin of his neck as he laughed, sometimes Monroe worried about his own life. Because one of these days, with his boyfriend being the definition of "sex on legs," Nick was sure to kill him.