The first group of houses are all the kind that show up on the cover of Architectural Digest with the tacit understanding you don't live in them so much as revel in the fact you can afford to own them. Or conversely, are of the type where someone thought gold-leaf was the ultimate in home decorating.
On one hand, they make Adam question the sanity of the realtor; on the other, the sheer horror forces Kris to actually express a vocal opinion, on the order of, "No way in hell, Lambert," at the terrifying mirrored bedroom, which proves that someone can take something as beautiful and wholesome as mild exhibitionism and make it so very, very wrong.
"We could take down the mirrors," Adam says as Kris concentrates on the road with the look of a man who barely escaped death, or staring at himself from five thousand separate angles. "Repaint--well, okay, everything."
Kris gives him a look just on this side of panic.
"Granted, the murals were a little--" Adam searches for the right word to express the feeling of being watched by flat, painted eyes that followed you from room to room. Sure, they could paint over that, but they'd always know beneath the paint, they were still there. "Okay, yeah, that was unsettling."
"Someone actually lived there."
"I'm trying not to think about that too much," Adam answers carefully. It's not that he has anything against murals or modern art, but there's expressing artistic vision and then there's whatever the fuck that was supposed to be. "Call me crazy, but was there a Dante's Inferno going on in the dining room or--"
"Oh, there was," Kris says, fingers white-knuckled around the wheel. "Imagine coming home to that after Burning Man this year and tell me we can repaint."
"I might find religion," Adam says, not sure he's joking. "Or a psychiatric disorder. Okay, so. First group: fail."
"Maybe talk to her about less avant-garde and more, I don't know, a place where the dogs won't be afraid to come inside?"
Adam looks at Kris thoughtfully. "You want a dog?" Kris had been involved with a fundraiser for some animal shelter a few months ago, and being Kris, now volunteered on alternate weekends and dragged Adam along whenever possible (read: a lot). Adam had been watching for escalation. "So we're at the dogs place now?"
Kris shrugs, shoulders set to defensive. "Maybe?"
"You're thinking of a specific dog, though," Adam continues cheerfully; he's been curious how Kris would approach the subject for a while now. "Specific dogs, plural."
"I was thinking of eventually getting a dog," Kris says, like this hasn't been obvious for fucking ever. "Maybe a cat," he adds in the spirit of compromise or something. "The lemon tree is still alive."
"Which we both admit may be the first verifiable miracle of the twenty-first century."
"Alive," Kris says firmly. "And I mean, after we get a house. The condo wouldn't really work--"
"That's why you agreed to start looking," Adam says, enlightened. "Fuck like, space and traffic and paparazzi living on our doorstep; you were thinking of the best place for us to raise puppies."
Kris doesn't deny it.
"I have never found you more adorable," Adam says, trying unsuccessfully to fight down the giggling that if he starts now will never ever stop, and Brad's couch is way too short to risk that. "Seriously. Puppies."
"It doesn't have to be puppies," Kris mutters half-heartedly, maybe thinking of the current crop at his pet animal shelter. "Forget it."
"I didn't say I was opposed to exploring your maternal instincts," Adam starts, enjoying this way too much.
Kris' left eyelid twitches.
"Just, do you think we're ready for such a big step?" Adam settles back on the seat, keeping his eyes carefully off the road. Kris is a very good driver, which is a problem, because that makes him very different from the population of LA, who most definitely are not. "If you're thinking couch, let me remind you that means no sex, and it's not like you're a ball of sunshine the next morning when that happens." Not that Adam is either, but Adam isn't interacting tomorrow with people he actually likes in a small, confined space where everyone is armed with objects that could double as weapons of blunt force trauma.
Kris meditates that. "True." Then. "It doesn’t have to be puppies."
"I don’t know." Adam considers the possibilities. "Will they have your eyes?"