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When It Rains, It Pours

Chapter 1, Part 3: Keith

Katie is hunched over an assortment of papers, pen in hand, and actively scribbling notes when Keith finally arrives at her lab. He pauses in the doorway and reaches out to knock softly on the open door.

“Keith,” she says as she looks up at him briefly.

Keith smiles. She’s not surprised to see him, she never is. In the years that they’ve known each other, Keith has made a habit of randomly stopping by.

“Busy?” Keith asks.

“Not really, just working on reports.” She sets her pen down and rubs her eyes. “What brings you here? Must be good for you to trek through the rain.”

“Eh. I was already out.” Keith shrugs. “Wanna get lunch?”

“Keith, it’s nine in the morning.”

“Brunch?”

She rolls her eyes and chuckles.

“I can’t just take off from work, but you’re welcome to hang out here,” she says.

Keith doesn’t have much to say, but they chat idly about his work at the afterschool program and about the projects that Katie is working on. It’s nice.  It’s good to catch up. It feels like it’s been too long, even though it’s only been about two weeks.

“Hey, Pidge! You joining us for lunch?” one of Katie’s coworkers shouts from across the hall after about an hour. “We’re getting Mexican!”

Katie groans.

“No, thanks!” she shouts back. “I hate the Mexican place they go to,” she tells Keith.

“Pidge?” Keith raises an eyebrow in question. He’s never heard that nickname before.

“Ugh. Don’t ask.”

“Too late.”

She levels Keith with a flat stare before shooting her eyes toward the ceiling and huffing a sigh.

“It’s a terrible story,” she says, turning back to her work.

“So? Tell me anyway.”

“It really isn’t funny. I was feeding the pigeons one day, just brainstorming ideas. Kinkade, one of the other researchers, saw me and started calling me ‘Pigeon.’ Then ‘Pigeon’ changed to ‘Pidge,’ some joke about my height, or something. And they haven’t stopped calling me ‘Pidge’ ever since. I hate it.”

“You’re right, it’s not that funny, but I am definitely going to call you that from now on.” Keith can’t help his smile.

“Please don’t,” Katie says.

Keith’s smile only grows. They chat and joke until Keith has to leave for work.

— — —

Keith is exhausted when he gets back to the apartment that night.  He pushes open the door and shoves off his shoes.

When he rounds the corner into the kitchen, Lance is sitting at their small dining table.

“Keith, we should talk,” he says.

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Reading about when Keith heard the news about the Kerberos mission makes me cry every fucking time because he doesn’t deserve all this hurt, you know? He was hurt enough by his dad’s death and growing up without another parent and it was like the world was out to get him. The world really didn’t want him to be happy, and the biggest factor wasn’t his parents, but Shiro. He lost Shiro more than once and like I wanna say that that could have given him severe separation anxiety but that makes him sound like a dog? But obviously nobody would ever figure out that he has separation anxiety because it makes him feel weak and he doesn’t want to seem weak so he just suppresses it.

So yeah, I don’t like reading about Keith hearing the news of the mission.

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“Just because people are crappy sailors doesn’t mean that someone else is always to blame,” muttered Lance, “And plus. We don’t drown people for fun.” He leaned close, face inches from Keith’s. “We drown them for dinner.”

My piece for the amazing Watercast, from @fishwrites. Keith’s design is from @lowaharts

Without a doubt one of the best works out there ♥ Took me 5h and I’m so proud of it. I loved how the colors turned out | ptSAI

dearshouyou
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Plance AU Lance is a Demon that is supposed to torment Pidge for all eternity as part of a curse but instead gets sidetracked by stuff like video games and milkshakes so becomes less of a curse and more like a room mate.

here you go @hushman. Please let us know if you enjoyed it!

Lance enjoyed torturing and maiming mortals as much as the next demon, but he found a special sort of pleasure in uncovering his victim’s pet peeves and pushing her buttons in just the right way. 

Stealing her headphones and blatantly wearing them in front of her so she’d snap “Quit touching my stuff, Lance!” gave him even more of a rush than inflicting a thousand paper cuts on a pinkie finger. Leaving the GameCube controller wires kinked and tangled for her to deal with while she glared at him was a sweeter satisfaction than the tune of an agonized scream.

And the sharpness of her elbow digging into his side when he flirted with her friends in front of her was a small price to pay for her rolling her eyes and her heated, barely comprehensible grumbling.

Yeah, Lance quite liked this job. He leaned back in the threadbare lazy boy with his feet - shoes on, of course - propped up, obnoxiously slurping on his strawberry milkshake - he’d have to save some for when his victim returned from work because the noise would drive her crazy - and surveying his latest ploy.

A clean living room - an uncluttered floor and table - with not a single exposed wire out of place.

She was going to hate it. She’d come from work tired, longing for a quick game (with him as her player two because that was a line even Lance wouldn’t cross) before taking a shower and throwing herself back into work, only to be stopped in her tracks when she couldn’t find the GameCube or any controllers or game disks or even the TV remote.

And Lance would smile innocently as she rounded on him. He’d slurp on his straw, sucking in more air than liquid, and ask her if she’d like him to make her a milkshake too.

And then she’d explode - maybe this time she’d even threaten to kick him out - and it would be beautiful.

(She really was cute when she got riled up; maybe he should step up his game?)

Lance straightened, eager to see his handiwork play out, when the deadbolt clicked. The door swung open, and his mortal roommate entered, slouching with her eyes downcast.

“Pidge!” he greeted her cheerfully, raising his glass as if toasting her. “You’re late today. Work that bad?”

Her only response was a sideways glance - were her eyes red? - at him before she turned her back to close and lock the door. She slipped her shoes off and tucked them in the coat closet with a sniff.

“It was…fine,” she told him at last. She sniffed, rubbing at her eyes - though she kept her face angled away from him. “I’m going–I’m g-going to bed.” She walked behind the couch, ignoring all his hard work, towards her bedroom.

“Wait!” Lance shot up and rounded the couch, an unfamiliar worry churning in his gut. “Do you at least want a milkshake first?”

She shook her head, and a heartbeat later her door slammed shut, leaving Lance slack-jawed and staring after her, wondering where his devious plan went so disastrously wrong.

Did he…choose the wrong button? Or…well, she seemed upset…maybe he should talk to her? She liked him prying into her personal life about as much as she did if he dared rifle through her diary (which he tried once but she threatened to cut off his hands if she caught him again and, well, he quite liked his hands).

It was still worth a try, Lance decided; the sooner he knew what bothered his victim, the sooner he could cheer her up, and the sooner he could get back to his usual harassment.

(Not to mention the thought of her so upset tied his insides into knots; and how was that even possible? It’s not like he had intestines like a mortal!)

Lance knocked on her door. He held his breath while he waited, bracing himself for disappointment, but from inside floated a soft, unsteady, “Come in.”

Well, Lance thought as his heart skipped a beat, here went nothing.

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