Steve Sloan tried his hardest to look surprised, he really, really did, and he even fooled most people, but the person he most wanted to fool knew him better than that... but seemed pleased enough that Steve at least acted surprised for everyone else.
BBQ Bobs was filled to the gills with many of Steve's friends from the station, and the hospital. Presents were piled high on one table, while food was covering many others.
Steve may have known that his young lover was planning this party, but it still awed him to see just how many people had shown up, and just how well thought of his really was.
It seemed like such a small number sometimes, when you heard of people living longer and longer, more people than ever before hitting 100, but there were other times it felt like he was really old.
Now was one of those times, the party had been in full swing for a few hours, Steve had opened the mountain of presents, receiving everything from a hand knitted sweater (from old nurse Bettie - who'd always had a soft spot for the Sloan men) to a gold watch from his lover, engraved with his name, and a 'promise' of another present when they got home.
Jesse was bouncing eagerly through the guests, making sure everyone had a drink, or whatever else they wanted or needed... he had seemingly boundless energy, although admittedly he had calmed down a lot since he and Steve had first met.
Steve smiled watching Jesse... yes he'd calmed down somewhat, but he was still very much the youthfully exuberant Doctor he'd met years ago.
"Steve?" his father appeared beside him, giving him a slight shock.
Mark didn't say anything, just stood beside him and watched him watch Jesse.
This time last year was completely different. Steve and Jesse had been arguing, baiting each other for weeks, something had to give, and when Mark had gone away for a few days for a seminar that unfortunately clashed with his son's birthday, he'd come home to find clothes strewn throughout the living room, and two very contented looking men sleeping in Steve's bed... he still didn't really know what had happened, all either of them were saying was that it happened on Steve's birthday, and a few muttered words about chocolate cake... Mark had the feeling he was better not knowing.
Jesse chose that moment to bounce over Steve's direction, practically jumping up to give the man a kiss.
"You okay Steve? I know you knew, but your still having a good time right?" Jesse asked.
"They best love... got a drink, good friends around, and I get to indulge in my favourite past time of Jesse watching... what's not to like." Steve said cheekily.
"Steve!" Jesse said, batting him lightly on the arm, mock admonishment on his face.
Jesse stayed close to Steve the rest of the evening... although they were discreet... everyone knew about them, they just didn't rub it in by making out in the corner like a couple of teenagers.
Eventually though, Jesse deemed it was acceptable for him and Steve to sneak off, which suited Steve just fine, because he wanted his 'private – for his eyes only' birthday present.
"Steve behave." Jesse laughed as Steve grabbed him and pushed him against the car.
"In a minute babe." Steve promised, kissing Jesse long and deep.
"Now I'll behave, wanted to do that all night." Steve said.
Jesse managed a laugh between his valiant attempts to regain use of his lungs for breathing.
"Mr Impatient." Jesse teased.
"Well of course! Have you seen my lover, he's gorgeous!" Steve said, jumping back and laughing out loud as Jesse made to move on him.
"Nah ah! Now who is Mr Impatient... home and too bed where I can make love with you properly," Steve announced, much to Jesses' amused dismay.
Steve and Jesse arrived back at the beach house, all was quite from the outside, but inside was a wonder of candles, seemingly leading to the kitchen, and/or Steve and Jesse's bedroom.
Deciding to check out the kitchen first, two very red faced men missed the hidden camera filming them.
Sitting on the kitchen table in full view was a triple chocolate fudge cake, much like Amanda had presented Steve with on his last birthday, the words "Happy Anniversary" written neatly in the place where "Happy Birthday" had been last year, and a note at the side of it.
Have a wonderful evening.
Dad and Amanda
"Think they know?" Jesse asked.
"You mean what we used that cake for last year... no I doubt it... at least I hope not... I don't spot any whipped cream... though maybe we should eat this one the normal way, just encase." Steve suggested.
"Maybe... but I liked it much better our way," Jesse said with a grin, remembering just how much fun that had been... oh yeah, food fights and clean UP duty... not a bad way to spend a day.
"Come on Jess... lets stash this and go to bed... I want my present." Steve said.
"I already gave you the watch Steve." Jesse teased like he didn't know exactly what Steve meant.
"And it was very nice for show, but now I want my real present... in other words you, in my bed, very naked, and very horny." Steve said trying to sound sexy... not quite pulling it off, but Jesse let it slid, after all it was Steve's birthday and who was he to turn down such a fine request.
The next after saw two very happy, very tired men appear at the Sloan dining table, and a grinning Mark and Amanda who handed them each a piece of triple chocolate fudge cake... with whipped cream on the side.