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spiralled-fury5 minutes ago
Area man-slash-hero Jack Cooper learns what a panic attack is.
He rates it 0/10, would not recommend, a lot messier than he imagined, more at 11.
Also the medics could stand to be more helpful some days.
I posted titanfall fanfic!
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dumbfuck-mojave9 minutes ago
Lily Chen SFW Relationship Headcanons
Character: Lily Chen from The Shadowhunters Chronicles written by @cassandraclare
Author鈥檚 Notes: This is the first thing I鈥檝e written in a while and it feels good to be back! I鈥檓 experimenting with post formatting as well, and I like the little squares (Tumblr won鈥檛 let me have my square bullet points :( ).聽I haven鈥檛 fully read all of Lily鈥檚 scenes but I have skimmed and done enough research that I think this is in-character enough. If it isn鈥檛, who cares? She needs more content, please and thank you. I will make that content. I have something else with her in it coming soon.聽
Warnings: I don鈥檛 know, nothing too in-depth/graphic. Vague mentions of trauma and talking it out because you should support your partner in a relationship. Since she's a flirtatious character, there鈥檚 some of that, but this is still SFW. Also, she鈥檚 a vampire, so general vampire stuff. It鈥檚 fine, this probably wasn鈥檛 even needed. Also just way too many emojis, I need to calm down-
Being in a relationship with Lily Chen:
(This was supposed to be written as a neutral thing as to whether the reader was a member of the shadow world or a mundane, but it turned into strictly mundane. Sorry about that).
You probably met at an establishment that caters to mundanes and the shadow world.
Has a preference for women but is into dating anyone, so get ready.
She鈥檚 with some of the other clan members and locks onto you and the others are like 鈥淪he鈥檚 at it again.鈥
Lays the charm on HEAVY. Slides up to you and is like 鈥滒煈馃憖鈥.
Whether you鈥檙e super flustered or not, she鈥檒l keep doing it.聽
She never comes off as creepy though, a real casanova in the ways of romance~
She鈥檚 on official business for the Alliance, picking something up from the little shop you鈥檙e both at (a drag because she can鈥檛 go out with you right now 馃檮) but she hands you her phone with a smirk so you can put your number in.聽
You might think she would鈥檝e taken yours to do some flirty nonsense like putting her name in as something鈥 flirty, but she wanted to see what you would put your name in as (Uno Reverse).
Made dead sure there was nothing you could see beside the number input screen though, not even notifications. She doesn鈥檛 trust like that.聽
You put a little heart after your name and smile at her and she lowkey freaks out. This feels different what鈥檚 going on, oh no-
Her phone case is a blinged out vampire smile Clary gave her as a gag gift. She isn鈥檛 being subtle (this should鈥檝e been your first clue, but nah).聽
So she and the others show up at the Alliance meeting (It鈥檚 at Magnus and Alec鈥檚 today because they鈥檙e dealing with warlock business) and she looks kind of uncomfortable? Not uncomfortable in the usual way, just a little blushy and nervous.
Alec is like 鈥淵ou good?鈥 and she鈥檚 like 鈥淢MMM YEAH?? I THINK??鈥
She isn鈥檛 IN LOVE right away but it does feel different from when she usually picks up hotties 馃槈.
The only thing she mentions about it during the meeting is a quick 鈥淵eah I saw some cutie before we got here 馃槑鈥 because if we only do surface level emotions we don鈥檛 have to discuss our actual feelings nice one Chen-
It doesn鈥檛 work that well. Sometimes she can pull the hiding stuff off but today is not her day.
Elliott and Jacob are looking at each other like 鈥??鈥 because Lily鈥檚 usually joking around and not taking anything seriously during smaller meetings like this. Alec is staring at her trying to figure out what鈥檚 wrong because he鈥檚 way too oblivious for this, help him.
Magnus KNOWS. He鈥檚 sipping on tea and raising an eyebrow at her and Lily notices and glares at him because he always gives her THAT LOOK like he knows her and Lily doesn鈥檛 vibe with it-
(Magnus wants to be a better support system for her, but he isn鈥檛 going to poke that bear. She鈥檒l come to him when she wants, if ever. He鈥檚 everyone鈥檚 dad.)
She gets back in her groove by the end of the meeting, it鈥檚 like 2 in the morning now and she pulls out her phone and texts you.
鈥淗ey, u up?鈥
She鈥檚 good at flirting but also sucks at it at the same time.
You text back immediately. Don鈥檛 ask me what you were doing the pretty girl with the cool hair just texted you it鈥檚 GO TIME.
聽While ignoring the implications of that type of message, you text back 鈥淵eah what鈥檚 up.鈥澛
So this breaks her. She honestly wasn鈥檛 expecting a text back right away and we鈥檙e back to square one. Stay cool Lily, stay cool.聽
After 5 minutes of staring at the phone on her end and you waiting for a response (a bit impatiently because it鈥檚 2 AM) she responds 鈥淲hen are you free? I wanna get to know you as soon as possible 馃槝鈥
鈥淚s that so? Well tomorrow night should work, pick me up at 9?鈥
Congrats, you unknowingly played her again. She鈥檚 off her mojo today.
鈥淥f course 馃槈. I鈥檓 looking forward to it~鈥 Not off her mojo enough to not be cheeky though.
You just barely smile and give the nerd your address. She better tell you what you鈥檙e doing before then though (You want to dress smart and also aren鈥檛 trying to get murdered)
You both end up talking throughout the day (Well, your day. She鈥檚 supposed to be sleeping) and you figure out where you鈥檙e going.聽
Earlier, she was literally breaking down over where to take you.
鈥淚s going to a club to cliche? What counts as trashy? Will they want something more intimate or casual? Taki鈥檚? Is Taki鈥檚 good?鈥
Elliott鈥檚 just standing there, watching her and waiting for his booty call to show up.
She may be good with flirting and casual hook-ups but relationships? Genuine, honest relationships? That about scares her right back into living.
She wants this to go well, to maybe lead to something more, and that makes her nervous.
Anyway she ends up taking you to a really casual but classy run by a nice couple (of Downworlders).
It鈥檚 really nice and fun, typical first date 鈥済et-to-know-you鈥 type questions. Stuff she can come up with while still being guarded.
You can already tell by the way she treats the staff and owners that she鈥檚 a good girl.
(She was a waitress, she knows the pain.)
She walks you up to your door at the end of the date and you turn to her and tell her you had a good time and maybe鈥 maybe if she did too, you could do this again.聽
Then you go inside.聽
She stands there in silence for a few minutes then skips back to the car she 鈥渂orrowed鈥 and speeds off to go brag about how well it went to Jacob because his last date ended up with the girl crying.
Magnus has many cars. Magnus knows Lily took one of his cars.
Ok just imagine getting more steady with her because I need to stop the set up and actually do what the title says:
She鈥檚 literally an amazing girlfriend.聽
Jokes around a lot but does a pretty good job at seeing when things need to be serious or if you鈥檙e uncomfortable with anything.聽
One night, she asked to come into your house. Which, mind you, she鈥檚 done before, but she had this look in her eyes like she needed to tell you something important.
That was the night she told you everything about the shadow world.
鈥淵ou aren鈥檛 supposed to do that!鈥 She does NOT care.
Because she genuinely feels bad hiding it from you if you鈥檙e going to go steady + the unknowing danger you can be put in if you鈥檙e with her.聽
She talked about it with Alec, he says he鈥檒l handle it if anyone gives you trouble.聽
They already went through it with Simon, they got this.
She talks a lot about you to Alec and that鈥檚 how he knew you were important.
No matter how you react, she knows what to say to make everything fine.聽
The first time she took you to the Dumort you were pretty amazed. Like, c鈥檓on. Your girlfriend did all of this. She shows you around and while you鈥檙e busy being amazed by the decor she鈥檚 side-eyeing anyone who tries to get out of place.
The other vampires show you a good time though, it鈥檚 great.聽
Now to explore my favorite headcanon: Lily鈥檚 a secret nerd.
She鈥檚 not as much of a nerd as Simon or Clary but she鈥檚 still with it.聽
Granny is hip with the kids you know.聽
Another thing I know is- she absolutely kills at Dead by Daylight.
If you don鈥檛 know what that is; PVP survival game.
She鈥檚 a fair but absolutely ruthless killer.聽
Tries to get you to play, if you don鈥檛 want to try, at least watch it makes her happy.聽
Has max leveled all the killers, doesn鈥檛 play survivor, if she ever let鈥檚 Simon know she plays she makes him cry.聽
Also, plays a lot of Nintendo games.聽
Got Animal Crossing: New Horizons the second it came out and that and DBD are like all she does when she鈥檚 free.
Absolutely the person to do the arm yawn thing during movies and laugh at horror movies.聽
Into pop culture, but doesn鈥檛 know ALL pop culture, so introduce her to stuff, she has an eternity to enjoy it.聽
This is getting kind of disjointed so end of Nerd!Lily for now.
Like I said, she鈥檚 a charmer- So if you鈥檙e in good standing with your parents and introduce them to her, she鈥檒l make a stunning first impression.聽
It鈥檚 important to her so no funny business.
Some funny business she鈥檚 a little comedian.
Speaking of little, there鈥檚 a good chance you鈥檒l be the taller one in the relationship.
She鈥檚 only 5 foot but don鈥檛 try to do the armrest thing she bites, literally.聽
It鈥檚 canon she鈥檚 polyamorous so if you鈥檙e down for it, she is too. If not, that鈥檚 also fine.聽
Just in all aspects, she鈥檚 down and flexible for most things if you鈥檙e comfortable.
Is really smart and knowledgeable, but no one can know everything so if there鈥檚 an aspect of you she doesn鈥檛 know a lot about, she鈥檒l research it and let you explain it yourself if you choose.
Never change yourself. She loves and respects you as you are.聽
You鈥檝e been on every date imaginable at this point.
Aquarium where she bought a huge shark (she bought you something too but she wanted that shark with all the passion in her tiny body).
She has an old projector so you can have private movie dates.
Elliott tries to sneak in. Lily yells at him to get out. Elliott gets out.
She likes planning them but you take her out sometimes too.聽
You both even went to Build-A-Bear one time and she did the whole bear ritual thing. Vibes with kids, so she wasn鈥檛 embarrassed or anything.聽
Kisses the plush heart you put in your bear aw.聽
Ok now to get into some more serious/angsty ones.
Has very vivid dreams. Not good when your dreams are usually nightmares.聽
She appreciates it if you wake her up and hold her (she likes being held regardless but it鈥檚 especially true in this situation).
Doesn鈥檛 usually like to talk about it.
You need to work with her to open up about things. Like REALLY work.
Feels bad if she ever gets snippy but she doesn鈥檛 like feeling cornered or pushed.
But she has A LOT of trauma and baggage that she deals with in unhealthy ways.
It happens eventually though, and it鈥檚 a really important moment in your relationship.聽
Obviously, will do the same for you. She鈥檚 good at giving advice.聽
Sometimes she鈥檚 really sad about never being able to have kids herself and sometimes is so thankful she can鈥檛, because while she loves kids and is good with them, she鈥檚 scared she鈥檒l mess up her own somehow.聽
Doesn't even know if she'd adopt because then she knows she took this kid away from having a better home than with her (even if it's all false and she would be an amazing parent).聽
Same with being a vampire. She flip-flops on how she feels about it.聽
Struggles with depression and it got even worse after Raphael died, so just support her with it.聽
I know she smokes, but she drinks a ton as well. Not even spiked blood, just normal alcohol because she feels a thrill in testing how much it takes to have some effect. It's frightening.
Misses her mom, like a lot. Many of her crying fits are over it.
It鈥檚 why she鈥檚 more susceptible to woman authority/mentor figures than men.
Hates her dad. She wishes she was the one to kill him after she got out of the brothel, but she couldn鈥檛 track him down in the few months she stayed in Hong Kong.聽
Really insecure and hates showing it. Always afraid you鈥檒l leave her alone and she despises she thinks that way.
I鈥檓 getting too sad. Roll out the last ones.
She may have a lot of sad memories, but she has a lot of happy ones too.
In all fairness, she doesn鈥檛 have the best memory, and although she really tries not to, she forgets a lot of stuff. Don't get too mad.
A really good driver. A fast driver, but a good one.
Takes you on motorcycle rides and one time she drove up the side of a bridge and almost gave you a heart attack.聽
Talks to her bike like it鈥檚 a horse. It鈥檚 semi-alive in a way, which both freaks you out and fascinates you.
Also good at roller skating/rollerblading and skateboarding.
Um,,, going back to biting; if you鈥檙e down with it she鈥檒l take blood from you. In鈥 many scenarios (you probably get what I鈥檓 talking about huehue).聽
Made you sign one of the consent forms as a joke but not really-聽
Smokes a lot but is respectful enough to control it around you. You have human lungs, regardless of if you smoke or not. Can't be damaging those.
Help her dye her hair and do her makeup! It鈥檚 bonding! She can鈥檛 see herself in a mirror!聽
Exquisite music taste like ugh 馃憣馃憣馃憣聽
Pretty good dancer too.聽
The girlfriend who hypes you UP. Wolf whistles included. You鈥檙e perfect to her and anyone who disagrees with that gets the knife馃敧.
Seriously, she'll fight and probably kill for you (something to probably discuss. Like more in-depth than that specific scenario.)
She likes to style things. Your room/house, you, your car. Get decorated.
She鈥檚 into nicknames and prefers 鈥渂abe鈥 and 鈥渂aby鈥 in a relationship.
Brings you trinkets constantly she鈥檚 like a bird.聽
鈥淏abe look at this cool rock I found.鈥
Surprisingly, doesn't have tattoos. YET.聽
Matching tattoos?? Maybe.
She has piercings, though, and will get more. Come with her and she'll let you pick out a charm.
Does that stupid "ahaha" f-boy meme thing constantly. If you don't know what I'm talking about you're lucky.
Is eternally 19, acts like it.聽
Party hard baby.
Gets you involved in her political life and responsibilities; she is an important figure after all.
Was kind of nervous her loved ones wouldn鈥檛 like you. Irrational; of course they love you.
A pretty decent artist. She likes drawing you :).
Nude modeling 馃憖. JK JK, unless-
Likes to take pictures and likes to send pictures so just be ready.
She's a big fan of karaoke and I'm sorry but you'll absolutely, 100% get dominated. She didn't come here to mess around, she has 80's songs on standby.
She's like a cat- fast and flexible. It's fun until it looks like she's broken herself.
She really likes your voice and talking to you.. which means you'll get hit up at midnight if you aren't with her. She just really, really loves you but please figure out a sleep schedule.
Has a lot of money. You're kind of concerned where she gets it from.聽
But that just means she can treat you 馃憦. Vacations to wherever you want baby.
Overall, it鈥檚 a very good, fun and healthy relationship. You teach each other things and make a ton of memories together.聽
Isn鈥檛 really looking forward to having to face your death if you don鈥檛 become immortal but hahaha we鈥檙e done with angst headcanons for now-
I鈥檓 done for now I could go on all day in more detail but I鈥檓 sick so thank you for reading and leave a comment, like, share, reblog, whatever ;)
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djpurple39 minutes ago
Tell them we鈥檙e survivors - Sanders Sides Fic
Word-count: 14,200(ish) words [under the cut]. Oneshot. Ships: Logince, theoretical/possibly implied moceit (if you choose to read it as such) also shoutout there鈥檚 some good good brotherly creativitwins in here bc i love remus :) Warnings: touch starvation, arguments, swearing, self-deprication/self-doubt, food / descriptions of food / some unhealthy eating habits, brief injury / blood mention, a panic attack. Hurt/Comfort :) Angst w/ happy ending (big romantic ending, too, sorry it ran away from me lmao)
bet yall thought i wasn鈥檛 going to post new stuff anymore huh. well im still kicking. also if you鈥檝e been tagged in this but don鈥檛 want to read it, all good!!! i just tagged a bunch of people on the Offchance u might have wanted a Fic. Read responsibly <3 ily
Roman is shivering.
He sits alone on the couch 鈥 and it is very late. He waits and listens for Patton go into his bedroom before he at all dares to leave his own. He鈥檚 sick of his surroundings, of staring at the same four walls, and so he comes downstairs and sits on the couch.
He might be waiting for something.
He doesn鈥檛 know what.
He curls up on himself and tips over sideways, lying in a ball on the sofa and closing his eyes, deciding on the fly that he鈥檚 sleeping here tonight.
He is still shivering. He is not necessarily cold.
Not cold in a temperature kind of way. But something in his chest is cold, which sets the chill across his skin like an apathetic blanket.
Roman鈥 wants a hug.
But it鈥檚 2am, and Patton鈥檚 just gone to bed. The others should be asleep, 鈥ut they all have terrible sleep habits, so no one probably is.
But Roman鈥檚 not going to ask. Because it鈥檚 embarrassing, it proves him to be weak, and honestly, it鈥檚 just too much effort.
He falls asleep on the couch.
He wakes up at roughly 5am, and slinks back upstairs before he can be caught, and tries to catch a few more hours sleep before he puts his clothes in the dryer, and then goes on to drag himself into a warm-warm-hot shower to try and chase the chill from his bones, and he fetches his warm clothes and taking a moment to change into them and enjoy the simulated contact. He can鈥檛 help the delighted shivers it sends down his spine, and he hates himself for it, because it really is pathetic, isn鈥檛 it?
He goes about his day normally. He tries not to stare as Patton gives Virgil a very big hug. Patton has not hugged Roman in a long time. Patton probably assumes that Roman does not want hugs from him.
鈥t is very much the opposite. But if Patton does not want to give Roman hugs, then Roman will not force the matter.
He turns around to continue into the kitchen when he realises that Logan is: a) already there, and b) watching him closely, and he turns red and carefully slips past, trying his best not to touch Logan.
They make toast side-by-side, and as Roman reaches for the jam jar, Logan passes it to him and their fingers brush, and fuck! Roman jolts because oh god, he really is sensitive now, isn鈥檛 he?
鈥淓lectric shock,鈥 he quickly excuses himself, even though they both know it wasn鈥檛 that at all, and takes the jar before either of them drop it. 鈥淭hanks.鈥
Logan picks up his plate and goes to leave, but he looks Roman up and down once more, with his now-shaking hands and his now-hot cheeks, and pauses.
He stops to pat Roman on the back before he leaves the kitchen.
It鈥檚 so warm warm warm Logan come back please god come back
Roman shivers and continues making his toast.
They have a movie night, and Roman is torn as he comes downstairs. Because his tradition is to hog all the pillows and build himself a throne, but this is an optimal chance to get some human contact.
Also, if he wanted the pillows, he needed to have shown up twenty minutes before in order to actually steal them before Virgil gets there.
They鈥檙e scheduled to start in five minutes. So he鈥檚 already fucked up that plan.
He heads downstairs and sees his friends already comfortable. Patton and Virgil are sitting together, Patton draped over Virgil鈥檚 lap like a cat. Logan is perched in his usual spot, sipping iced coffee. Roman glances to where he normally sits, which is very un-pillowed, and he doesn鈥檛 really know what to do as an alternative.
鈥fter the last video and all the confrontations that came with it, the others don鈥檛 like him very much. He can tell by how cold they鈥檝e all become to each other. He can tell by how strained Patton鈥檚 smile is when it turns on him, and he can see in the way Virgil raises an icily judgemental eyebrow.
鈥淎re you joining us?鈥 Virgil asks.
鈥淯m,鈥 Roman says, always so eloquent. 鈥淢aybe? I鈥︹ Stall for time stall for time stall for time stall for time stall for time stall for time stall for time 鈥淚 mostly came down for a snack, rather than a movie.鈥
He strikes a pose. 鈥淭hough I already am a snack, of course.鈥
鈥淥f course,鈥 Virgil echoes dryly. 鈥淪o鈥 we鈥檒l start without you, and you can sit down if you change your mind.鈥
Patton tries to smile at him again. Roman attempts to smile back, throws a peace sign of acknowledgement into the air, and hurries into the kitchen.
Logan turns to look at him, and Roman deliberately puts his back to Logan as he hunts around in the cupboard for something he doesn鈥檛 really want to eat, and he ends up making popcorn, leaning against the bench and watching the bag spin around and around, and before he knows it he鈥檚 emptying it into a big bowl and returning to the sofa.
He鈥檚 probably going to sit on the floor. He鈥檚 thinking about sitting closer to Logan, if Logan doesn鈥檛 object.
He loiters for a moment, and Logan鈥檚 the only one who glances at him. Before Roman can ask anything, the embodiment of logic pats the empty spot beside him.
鈥淗ere,鈥 he says.
It is not an order, but Roman doesn鈥檛 argue. He settles in beside Logan, and Logan glances at him once more. Unbidden, he shuffles closer just a fraction so that their thighs are pressed together. 聽Roman tries to keep the sound that the contact elicits from him down in his throat, and wordlessly offers Logan popcorn to avoid speaking.
They sit and watch the movie together, snacking, and Roman鈥檚 skin is on fire in a way that he has been craving for days.
He doesn鈥檛 realise how sleepy the warmth makes him until about three-quarters of the way through, where his head is nodding into his chest and he really, really wants to curl up against Logan and fall asleep鈥 but he just can鈥檛 do that. He doesn鈥檛 deserve it. Not anymore.
It doesn鈥檛 help when Logan gently takes the empty bowl out of his hands 鈥 it was what Roman had been focussing on not-dropping in order to stay awake.
Roman pulls away, sits upright, and tries to pinch himself to stay conscious.
Logan leans over to him, brow creased with something that Roman might even call concern.
鈥淎re you alright?鈥
鈥淢m-hm,鈥 Roman manages, and that鈥檚 about all he can manage.
鈥淵ou look tired.鈥
Roman shrugs, and nods, and Logan glances at the others, who seem to be purposefully ignoring them.
鈥淚f you want to sleep, you can,鈥 Logan offers, and he slinks one of his arms across the back of the sofa, behind Roman, and it takes a moment for the prince to realise what鈥檚 being offered.
鈥淚鈥︹ he clambers to his feet. 鈥淚鈥 yes, you鈥檙e right. I鈥檓 going to turn in for the night.鈥
鈥淏ut鈥︹ Patton suddenly speaks up, and his voice is strained. 鈥淵ou love Paddington, don鈥檛 you?鈥
Roman blinks, and his eyes flick back to the screen. He hasn鈥檛 really even clicked as to what they are watching. And鈥 yes, it in fact is Paddington that has been playing for the past seventy minutes.
鈥淯m,鈥 Roman says, and edges towards the stairs. They鈥檙e all staring at him now. His skin is burning and icy and crawling and he feels so many words, too many words trying to slip off his tongue like oil and he just swallows hard and tries to give them anything - anything at all - as an excuse. 鈥淚鈥 I鈥檓 sorry, I don鈥檛鈥 feel great? I鈥檓 sorry. I鈥檓 sorry, I鈥檓 just gonna鈥 go.鈥
And he bolts.
It is a very long, cold night. He can feel where Logan鈥檚 leg had been pressed up against his, and the absence of such a small but persistent touch leaves Roman crying uselessly into his pillow. And somehow, despite all that, he still manages to fall asleep.
Roman has a funny feeling that Logan鈥檚鈥 trying something. Because Logan鈥檚 hanging around him a lot, constantly making up excuses to be in the prince鈥檚 company. And he鈥檚 gotten kinder, which is certainly novel. Roman sees that, and he knows well how hard it is, so he does his best to return the favour.
But the thing that makes Roman truly think that that Logan is up to something is the fact that he鈥檚 quietly become鈥 well, handsier鈥 for lack of a better term.
He pats Roman on the wrist when they鈥檙e sitting brainstorming together and Roman鈥檚 made a good point. He presses his hand into the small of Roman鈥檚 back when he鈥檚 guiding him somewhere, or silently requesting for Roman to step out of the way. He pats Roman on the shoulder in greetings every morning.
Does Logan know what he鈥檚 doing? Most likely. Does Roman hate him for it?
God, he鈥檚 so fucking weak that he鈥檒l take anything he can get.
It鈥檚 not really gotten better yet. But! Roman can confidently say that it has not gotten any worse, so he鈥檒l take his small victories where they come.
He comes down one morning for breakfast, trying to make sure he keeps his habit of eating regularly, but he hears voices he isn鈥檛 prepared to hear, and he freezes at the bottom of the stairs, staring at the back of Janus鈥 head, who is talking to Patton, and chokes down a few choice curses before he can give himself away.
Patton looks over Janus鈥 shoulder. At Roman. His face pinches, expression going from smiling to guarded in a heartbeat. Janus glances over his shoulder to see what his new best friend is looking at, and their eyes meet.
The blood drains from Roman鈥檚 face. He turns promptly on his heel and goes back up the stairs.
They watch him leave, but do not call out to him.
鈥hat鈥檚 fine. He doesn鈥檛 deserve a second chance. He doesn鈥檛 want to ruin their morning.
鈥e wasn鈥檛 hungry anyway.
That, it promptly turns out, is a lie.
Roman is curled up in the corner of his room, on the floor. He has given up on sitting at his desk because despite all the tweaks he keeps making to its height and material and texture and breadth is just never a comfortable experience, and sits with his arms wrapped around his stomach, watching the digital clock by his bedside blink-blink-blink.
Hunger pangs fade. They always do. He can wait them out. Nothing he hasn鈥檛 done before. Though if Janus is still downstairs at lunch, he probably will have to skip that as well because there鈥檚 no real way he can explain himself for missing breakfast but not lunch when they clearly saw him walk away.
He curls up tighter and fights back tears, watching the seconds blink by.
Nothing less than he deserves.
There is a light knock at the door, and then Logan lets himself in.
He doesn鈥檛 spot the prince right away from his depression corner, giving Roman a good moment to figure out what the hell Logan has hanging from the crook of his elbow.
Finally, Logan鈥檚 eyes find his, and he smiles a tight smile 鈥 one of poorly-hidden concern. He lifts the (and yes, it really does seem to be a) picnic basket, and gestures for Roman to stand up.
鈥淚 thought, perhaps, you might like to join me, for a picnic. In the Imagination, perhaps? Or even the living room. Or right here. I, um, wherever you鈥檙e comfortable.鈥
He gestures to the basket like Roman hasn鈥檛 seen it yet, and the bewilderment on his friend鈥檚 face makes Logan shift on his feet awkwardly.
鈥淥r I can leave the basket with you,鈥 he murmurs. 鈥淚鈥 do you not like the basket? Is it too much? I thought you might like this sort of thing. I, uh, pardon me, if I misjudged.鈥
鈥淣o!鈥 Roman is scrambling to his feet. 鈥淚鈥 um, that sounds鈥 delightful. Thank you, Logan.鈥
Logan offers his hand, 鈥nd Roman forgets to hesitate.
Roman can鈥檛 stomach facing the Imagination, and Logan isn鈥檛 really that comfortable in there anyway. It was quite touching he offered it in the first place, now that Roman reflects on it. So instead they head downstairs and start pushing furniture out of the way, and Roman summons the nicest picnic blanket he can think of and they lay it out on the floor. Logan finds a three-hour youtube video of wildlife to play on the TV to simulate being outside, and they have a picnic.
Virgil comes downstairs at one point, scrolling on his phone, and takes a moment to take in what on earth he鈥檚 looking at, at Logan and Roman with sandwiches in hand, staring back at him. Logan is staring impassively, like he鈥檚 challenging him to say something.
Virgil finally turns his gaze onto the princely side he鈥檚 seen so little of recently, and flinches, because鈥
Roman looks terrified. And half-ready to sink out here and now.
鈥淐arry on,鈥 Virgil mumbles, dropping his head and hurrying into the kitchen. 鈥淛ust getting some Gatorade.鈥
Roman is still tense, but the fact that Virgil hasn鈥檛 shouted at him or told him to back off is reassuring. Virgil has the bottle tucked under his arm and he鈥檚 holding a鈥?
鈥淒o you鈥 drink it with a wine glass?鈥 Logan asks for the both of them, equally as confused.
Virgil shifts on his feet, rolling the aforementioned wine glass between his fingers. 鈥淚 like the irony of it,鈥 he shrugs. 鈥溾o, an indoor-picnic? Not wanting to face the rays of the death-star today?鈥
Roman laughs at that, and immediately claps his hand over his mouth like familiarity is not allowed. Logan rolls his shoulders.
鈥淭he sun is not a death-star,鈥 he deadpans.
鈥淎re you sure?鈥
鈥淛ust because you wear all-black in all weather doesn鈥檛 mean everyone suffers like you, Virgil.鈥
鈥淵ou wear all-black!鈥
鈥淚 wear a linen shirt. Far more breathable.鈥
Roman鈥檚 snorting the quietest laughter he can manage into his hand. Virgil鈥檚 watching him, trying not to be as obvious as he probably is being.
After a moment, Roman brings his hand down from his mouth, and it strikes Virgil that this is the first smile he鈥檚 seen out of him in a long time.
鈥淩oman,鈥 he says before thinking about it, and Roman鈥檚 joy is gone in a heartbeat. His hands fall to his lap, and he sits up straight, prepared to be鈥 reprimanded? Virgil doesn鈥檛 really know, and it sickens him.
鈥淚, uh,鈥 he stammers, backing away, clutching his Gatorade for moral support. 鈥淚t鈥檚鈥 nice to see you. Been a while.鈥
Roman鈥檚 lips ghost the words nice to see you with a sort of detached surprise, before a smile manages to fight its way back onto his face.
鈥溾ou too.鈥
Logan takes a moment to check the basket, and they all can see that there鈥檚 more than two people鈥檚 worth of food there. Logan looks up at Roman, a question in his eyes, and Virgil watches Roman take a breath, and nod.
Logan turns to him. 鈥淚f you would like to join us,鈥 he says softly, 鈥渨e would not be opposed.鈥
Virgil looks at Roman, who looks 鈥 for lack of a better term 鈥 fragile. He feels a stab of remorse for what鈥檚 happened, because he never really did get Roman鈥檚 side of the story, did he? But he sees a glimmer of the old prince as Roman winks at him, and returns to his sandwich.
鈥淵eah,鈥 Virgil agrees, croaking through a suddenly dry throat. 鈥淵eah, I鈥檇 love to. Let me grab a couple more glasses, then.鈥
Patton comes down for a snack at about 2pm and is surprised to find the three of them picnicking in the living room, wine glasses of Gatorade in their hands. He pauses, eyes scanning the back of Virgil鈥檚 head, Logan鈥檚 side profile, and鈥
Roman鈥檚 wide-eyed expression as they stare each other down.
Logan notices Roman鈥檚 expression first, and turns to see what鈥檚 wrong, and blinks as he realises who it is. Virgil turns and looks at him.
鈥淥h,鈥 he says, 鈥渉ey, Pat.鈥
The moment of silence is the tensest thing Patton鈥檚 experienced in a while.
鈥淗i,鈥 he replies slowly. 鈥溾hat鈥檚 all this?鈥
鈥淎鈥 picnic?鈥 Logan offers. 鈥淚鈥 I thought it resembled a picnic. Is it because it鈥檚 not outside? I will clean up after us, if you鈥檙e worried about that, Patton.鈥
鈥淥h, no,鈥 Patton smiles, but it鈥檚 a little strained because Roman鈥檚 there, Roman鈥檚 right there, and he still hasn鈥檛 figured out if he鈥檚 happy with Roman yet. 鈥淭hat鈥檚 alright. I was just wondering if I was鈥 missing out on something, I guess!鈥
Roman hasn鈥檛 said a word. Patton鈥檚 eyes turn back to him and Roman looks terrified, looks queasy, and his hands a gripping the blanket beneath them and Patton鈥檚 eyes widen and he goes to say something soothing but 鈥
Roman sinks out.
Patton鈥檚 鈥渨ait, Roman-鈥 comes a second too late and the prince resurfaces in his own room with a sharp gasp. He stumbles over to his bedroom door and locks it, before falling into bed and pulling the blankets over his head like it will protect him from the world.
Roman is cold. Roman鈥檚 so fucking cold and he鈥檚 really getting sick of it. After his run-in with Patton he is less willing to risk leaving his room while others are around, and it means that he鈥檚 been evading Logan as well.
He half-expects Logan to have given up on him. He鈥檚 almost hoping for it. Because it will be easier for them to accept that he鈥檚 just someone you simply give up on; rather than someone who deserves unfaltering support.
He knows what sort of person he is. He just wonders if Logan鈥檚 figured it out yet, too.
He slinks out of his room at 1am one night, ferociously hungry and thirsty and terrifically lonely. He creeps downstairs and as soon as he sets foot in the kitchen his midnight snack quest turns into a full-on raid. There are leftovers in the fridge, set aside, and Roman suspects they鈥檙e for him.
He eats them cold, in the middle of the kitchen, in his pyjamas. The fake-tiles are uncomfortably chilled against his bare feet.
There is the creak of footsteps on the stairs 鈥 fast but quiet, and Roman鈥檚 choking on his spaghetti as he tries to finish quickly, already hating himself for daring to come downstairs, but freezes as he realises it鈥檚鈥
His brother jumps over the bannister and crosses the room so quickly that he鈥檚 standing in the doorway of the kitchen, panting from his mad dash, and his normally unhinged expression is broken with a genuine smile.
鈥淩oman!鈥 he says, brightly but still hushed. 鈥淵ou are alive!鈥
Roman, who is frozen to the spot, makes a point of swallowing and loosening his joints from the tension that rooted him in place.
鈥淯m,鈥 he mumbles, putting the now-empty container down on the bench. 鈥溾 am? Hello.鈥
Remus shakes, a full-body shudder he can鈥檛 restrain, and then before Roman can blink, Remus is right there and he鈥檚 thrown his arms around him and pulling him in tight, buries his face in Roman鈥檚 shoulder, and Roman can鈥檛 keep the ragged gasp down.
His skin is on fire. His brother is so warm so warm so warm oh god! And he can鈥檛 stop himself from just melting on the spot, falling back against his brother with the most pathetic noise whining from the space behind his nose.
He has never really given his brother a hug before. Remus is very good at it. Roman would be feeling guilty if he had any capacity for logical thought in this moment in time. But he doesn鈥檛. All he can do is press himself into Remus鈥 chest as much as he can, blindly seeking warmth.
鈥淥h fuck,鈥 Remus hisses. 鈥淥h, dude鈥 Logan said he thought you were touch-starved, but fuck, Roman!鈥
Roman shakes his head in tiny, tiny motions, because fuck, he knew Logan figured it out! His face is hot with embarrassment and he does his best to hide it in Remus鈥 sleepshirt.
鈥淚t鈥檚 okay,鈥 Remus murmurs. 鈥淚t鈥檚 okay, I gotcha. Do you need anything else? You had enough to eat?鈥
Roman ends up pointing at the empty cup on the bench 鈥 he hadn鈥檛 gotten around to getting himself a drink, and Remus carefully negotiates the two of them (still holding him tight with one arm) and fills the glass in the sink, pressing it into Roman鈥檚 hand.
Roman downs it in a heartbeat, and puts it down on the bench so that he can get back to hugging his brother, gasping for air.
鈥淒on鈥檛, don鈥檛, don鈥檛, don鈥檛-鈥 he鈥檚 mumbling, and Roman knows he鈥檚 incoherent, but he can鈥檛 control himself anymore now that the dam has burst.
鈥淚鈥檓 not letting you go,鈥 Remus vows, hugging him tight. 鈥淚s there anyone we can go to right now? Anyone you feel comfortable around?鈥
Roman鈥檚 hands tighten on the back of Remus鈥 shirt. He has no reply. Remus doesn鈥檛 miss that.
鈥淟ogan wants to help you,鈥 he tells his brother in a low voice. 鈥淐an I take you to him?鈥
Roman鈥檚 shaking, but鈥 he nods.
鈥淕reat,鈥 Remus says. Instead of separating to climb the stairs, he sinks them down straight into Logan鈥檚 room.
The desk-lamp is on when they get there. Logan is sitting on his bed reading, but is noticeably not-asleep.
鈥淵ou found him,鈥 Logan notes, immediately setting his book aside as the twins appear, and Remus is already practically dragging Roman his way.
鈥淵ou were right,鈥 Remus declares. 鈥淭his bitch is so touch-starved I think he鈥檚 turned into a koala.鈥
Logan puts a hand on Roman鈥檚 shoulder, which makes him shudder, but he doesn鈥檛 let Remus go, and he doesn鈥檛 lift his head.
Remus and Logan glance at each other, concerned, before Remus jolts, and he鈥檚 patting Roman鈥檚 shoulders frantically.
鈥淥h, no, Roman, don鈥檛 cry.鈥
He can feel the wetness through his shirt.
鈥淚鈥檓 sorry,鈥 Roman mumbles out. 鈥淚 can鈥檛鈥 I can鈥檛 help myself. I know it鈥檚 so pathetic, I know I鈥檓 not allowed it, I know I have to be better than this!鈥
鈥淎ll those things you 鈥榢now鈥 are bullshit,鈥 Remus snaps back; not angry 鈥 just frustrated that Roman needs to be convinced of his worth. 鈥淎nd- hang on, let鈥檚 backtrack. You鈥檙e allowed to cry.鈥
鈥淏ottling emotions is never healthy,鈥 Logan adds, pushing his glasses up his nose. 鈥淥r鈥 so I鈥檓 told.鈥
Roman laughs, a harsh sound that sounds more like a creature in pain, and shakes his head.
鈥淵ou鈥檙e allowed this,鈥 Remus continues, squeezing his brother tight. 鈥淵ou鈥檙e allowed to want to be looked after, and we鈥檙e allowed to do it.鈥
鈥淚 don鈥檛 want to be a hassle,鈥 Roman mumbles.
鈥淵ou aren鈥檛 a hassle,鈥 Logan cuts him off. 鈥淵ou鈥檙e my friend.鈥
Friend. Roman doesn鈥檛 know if he has any of those anymore. Friend. Well, apparently, he鈥檚 got one.
鈥淩oman, would you like some physical company tonight? For sleeping?鈥 Logan offers, and he鈥檚 extended his hand.
鈥淚 don鈥檛 think it鈥檚 a good idea for me to...,鈥 Remus says quietly, patting his brother on the back even as Roman looks up at him. 鈥溾ou know I can鈥檛 control my thoughts鈥 sometimes. I don鈥檛 want to鈥 hurt鈥 you.鈥
Roman squeezes Remus in his arms once, tightly, before making himself let go. It鈥檚 almost painful, letting go, and as soon as he does step away, he鈥檚 shivering, and he takes a step back from the two of them and he already wants to throw himself back at his brother even for just a scrap of comfort.
Remus thrusts his hands into his pockets and smiles at him. 鈥淚鈥 I鈥檓 gonna leave you in Logan鈥檚 hands, alright? He鈥檒l look after you.鈥
Before Roman can argue, Remus sinks out, leaving the two of them alone.
Logan takes a hesitant step towards him, and instinctively, Roman takes a step back. God, he feels like a wounded animal. Logan stops dead, and clasps his hands deliberately in front of him.
鈥淩oman,鈥 he says softly. 鈥淩oman, Remus is right, I want to help you.鈥
鈥淚 know you do,鈥 Roman replies, voice equally as hushed. 鈥淚鈥 why?鈥
鈥淲hy what?鈥
鈥淲hy do you want to help me?鈥 Roman鈥檚 beginning to cry again, and he shies away as the tears start to fall. 鈥淚鈥檓 not worth it, Logan. I鈥檓 nasty and cruel a-and selfish! Why help me?鈥
鈥淵ou are not those things!鈥 Logan counters, immediacy in his voice. 鈥淵ou鈥 I want to help you because you are a sensitive and kind person who has been taught the wrong things. And it鈥檚 not that you are those things, it鈥檚 that you鈥檝e been convinced you are. That鈥檚 not fair, Roman.鈥
Logan closes the distance and pulls Roman into a warm and steady hug.
鈥淚 want to help you,鈥 he murmurs, 鈥渂ecause it figuratively kills me to watch what鈥檚 happening to you. Figuratively.鈥
鈥淔iguratively,鈥 Roman agrees, burying his face in Logan鈥檚 shirt. He鈥檚 in his pyjamas as well. 鈥淲hy are you awake, Mr Eight Hours of Sleep? Don鈥檛 tell me you鈥檙e breaking your circadian rhythm for me.鈥
鈥淚 might be,鈥 Logan shrugs, and he says it so nonchalantly, but it鈥檚 a big admission from Logan, if Roman dares to think about it too hard.
He doesn鈥檛, though.
He ends up in Logan鈥檚 bed, in Logan鈥檚 arms, against Logan鈥檚 chest, and he鈥檚 shaking, trying not to cry and failing miserably, and Logan鈥檚 got him, Logan鈥檚 there, and Roman can鈥檛 help but just鈥 sleep. Because he feels safe, and loved. And it鈥檚 been so long since he鈥檚 felt either of those things.
He might feel the press of lips on his temple as he drifts off. Roman decides he must already dreaming.
They spend the whole next day together. Roman hardly leaves Logan鈥檚 room except for a change of clothes plus a shower, and for food. And they don鈥檛 spend it working 鈥 or at least, Roman doesn鈥檛. Logan sits amidst a stack of beanbags and encourages Roman to sit sort-of straddling his hips, their chests pressed together and Roman clinging to him like a lifeline, and Logan has his laptop in arms reach, peering over Roman鈥檚 shoulder as Roman buries his face in Logan鈥檚 neck as he taps away at his keyboard.
As Logan scrolls over what he鈥檚 written, he leans his head against Roman鈥檚.
鈥淗ow鈥檙鈥檡ou going?鈥 Roman murmurs, and he feels Logan shiver under him as his lips ghost over Logan鈥檚 skin.
鈥淚鈥檓 just finishing up,鈥 Logan replies, wrapping one arm securely around Roman鈥檚 waist. 鈥淕ive me ten minutes.鈥
Roman does.
Logan hits all the appropriate buttons, before closing his laptop and pushing it away from him, before finally wrapping both arms around Roman. For a moment, they listen to their breathing. 聽
Roman鈥檚 stomach growls.
He whines and buries his face in Logan鈥檚 neck, and Logan can feel how the prince鈥檚 face heats up.
鈥淎re you alright to go downstairs?鈥 Logan asks, cupping the back of Roman鈥檚 neck with his hand and stiffening in surprise at how that just makes Roman melt.
Roman bites his lip, and curls into Logan closer.
鈥淚 guess,鈥 he mumbles. 鈥淲hy?鈥
鈥淟unch time,鈥 Logan says, and he begins to rock gently. 鈥淚 don鈥檛 know about you, but I am hungry.鈥
鈥淔air enough,鈥 Roman mumbles, and his stomach betrays him loudly once more. 鈥溾 guess we should go downstairs.鈥
He is being held so tight and secure, and it鈥檚 so warm. Roman doesn鈥檛 want to move ever again. He curls up even tighter before he realises what he鈥檚 doing, and mumbles apologies as he tries to loosen his grip.
鈥淚 wonder,鈥 Logan mumbles to himself, before Roman鈥檚 squeaking with surprise as the world lurches, and Logan鈥檚 on his feet still cradling Roman to his chest, and Roman instinctively crosses his legs behind Logan鈥檚 back, clinging to Logan鈥檚 shoulders as he stares at the floor, now several feet away.
鈥淵ou鈥檙e strong,鈥 he breathes.
鈥淚 suppose so,鈥 Logan smiles, and he hitches Roman more comfortably across his hips. 鈥淲ould this be sufficient to go downstairs with?鈥
Oh. Roman buries his face with what definitely isn鈥檛 a whimper.
鈥淎 鈥榥o鈥 is okay,鈥 Logan reminds him softly, trying to coax Roman out of his shirt.
鈥淧lease,鈥 Roman mumbles, not looking up.
鈥淎lright.鈥 Logan leans his head against Roman鈥檚 again. 鈥淟et鈥檚 go have lunch.鈥
They go downstairs, and only Virgil is there. And Virgil stares at them in amazement, and Roman refuses to look up from where he鈥檚 hiding his face in Logan鈥檚 shoulder, and Logan hitches the prince up higher over his hips once more.
鈥淕ood day, Virgil,鈥 he says easily.
鈥淗i,鈥 Virgil says distractedly. 鈥淵ou鈥檙e鈥 strong.鈥
鈥淗m,鈥 Logan jests lightly. 鈥淭hat鈥檚 what Roman said.鈥
Roman鈥檚 hands tighten against Logan鈥檚 shirt, and Logan gets the hint.
鈥淪o,鈥 Virgil starts, eyes flicking between the koala prince and the embodiment of Logic who has recently become a eucalyptus tree, it seems. 鈥溾hat鈥檚 all this?鈥
鈥淐uddles,鈥 Logan says, like it鈥檚 the most common thing in the world. 鈥淭hough I might have to put you down to make us food, Roman.鈥
Roman can鈥檛 keep the sound down 鈥 the pathetic one that is the embodiment of but I鈥檓 afraid that if you do you鈥檒l never touch me again.
Then he tucks his chin away and starts to loosen his grip, in preparation for letting go.
鈥淗ey, nah, don鈥檛 do that,鈥 Virgil jumps in suddenly, and they both look at him in surprise. Virgil looks between the two of them, and there is something sympathetic glittering in his eyes. 鈥淚鈥檒l make you guys something. Go sit down, Logan.鈥
Virgil does. He carries food over to where Logan is sitting on the couch, Roman curled up practically on his lap, and he hands them each a plate. Logan takes it with a thank you. Roman takes it with shaking hands.
鈥淗ey,鈥 Virgil says softly, and he puts his hand on Roman鈥檚 shoulder, which gets a sharp breath in from the prince. 鈥溾 get it, alright? Let me know if I can help.鈥
And Virgil walks away. Roman hunches over his plate and tries to hide his tears from Logan.
He has taken to sleeping with Logan.
That sounds bad, in his head, but he can鈥檛 help it because it鈥檚 currently Remus鈥 favourite joke. Roman hasn鈥檛 slept in his own bed in a while now. Logan鈥檚 bed isn鈥檛 as comfortable as his own, in Roman鈥檚 opinion, but he is very happy to give up a marginal increase of comfort for Logan.
Logan is almost always with him these days. When he can鈥檛 be, Remus is there, and to Roman鈥檚 surprise, so is Virgil. He remembers one afternoon in particular fondly, where Virgil and him sat back to back in Roman鈥檚 room, one earbud each and talking back and forth about their music, swapping tunes and sharing thoughts.
Roman feels better. It鈥檚 been a long time since he can say that.
It takes another three weeks of this before they have another movie night, and Patton and Janus are there.
Roman does not sit on his throne. He sits beside Logan, and Virgil moves from his usual spot behind Patton to sit on Roman鈥檚 other flank. Remus drapes himself over the back of the sofa, in the empty space between Virgil and Janus, cracking jokes between the two of them.
Patton stares at Virgil for a few moments, almost opening his mouth to say something, ask why he鈥檚 sitting so far away, but Virgil turns and murmurs something to Roman, who pauses, before nodding his head in tiny motions, and the words dry up in his throat.
Roman feels Patton鈥檚 eyes on them, and they look at each other.
He swallows hard, and smiles at Patton.
Patton looks caught out, before kind-of smiling back.
Then Janus hits play, and they don鈥檛 make contact again for the rest of the night.
A few more nights down the line, Roman wakes up in Logan鈥檚 arms terribly thirsty, and he carefully extracts himself from the bed. He takes a moment to look down at Logan, whose normally serious face is eased with sleep. Unconsciously, Logan makes a little sound of displeasure, and he feels around for Roman鈥檚 warmth. Roman puts a pillow in Logan鈥檚 arms to give him something to hug, and鈥 quickly, before he can overthink the rush of warm in his own chest, pauses to press a kiss to Logan鈥檚 temple.
Roman feels something. Something about Logan. And if he鈥檚 honest, he鈥檚 a little scared of it.
He slips out of the room and down the stairs, and he makes it all the way to the kitchen before he realises that actually, the light is on in the kitchen, and people are there.
Patton and Janus are there, to be precise.
Roman freezes, like a deer in headlights. But it鈥檚 too late to back out now, they鈥檙e both looking at him. And Patton is rubbing his arms uncomfortably and looking away, and it鈥檚 clear he鈥檚 just freshly been crying.
鈥淚鈥︹ Roman stammers. 鈥淚鈥檓 sorry, I, uh, didn鈥檛 mean to interrupt. I just鈥 wanted some water.鈥
Janus stares at him impassively, before he turns and fetches a glass of the shelf, moves to the sink, before approaching Roman and pressing the glass into his hand.
It is a clear dismissal.
Roman is shaking now, he鈥檚 spilling water on his foot and he turns away to take a drink to try and cover it up. It鈥檚 silent now, and Roman knows that it is once again his fault that the atmosphere has been ruined.
He drains his glass, puts it down, and glances at the two of them, before beginning to walk away.
They watch him go. It鈥檚 almost like they鈥檙e waiting for something.
鈥oman thinks he knows what.
So he stops, turns around, and walks back, raising his chin, and decides for the first time in a long time that he鈥檚 going to be brave, goddamnit.
鈥淚鈥檓 sorry,鈥 he declares, his voice loud in the silence.
Patton looks up at him with wide eyes. Janus鈥 eyes narrow in distrust.
鈥淲hat for?鈥 Janus asks, folding his arms and moving a little in front of Patton, protecting Patton, protecting Patton from him, and Roman swallows hard.
鈥淚鈥檓 sorry,鈥 he repeats slowly, 鈥渇or鈥 fuck, for everything. Where do I start?鈥
鈥淭he beginning is a good place, I hear,鈥 Janus deadpans, but his eyes are glittering with something Roman can鈥檛 place.
鈥淎lright,鈥 Roman shifts on his feet. Whilst he hasn鈥檛 been able to stop thinking about this moment; the apology; he still doesn鈥檛 know what to say. He hasn鈥檛 practiced. It鈥檚 not going to be good enough. But then again, it probably never will be.
He takes a breath in, and does his best.
鈥淧atton鈥 I鈥檓 sorry for all the pressure I put on you. I鈥檓 sorry for expecting you to have all the answers. I鈥檓 sorry for convincing you that you have to be all-knowing and perfect. It鈥檚 unfair to expect that from anyone,鈥 he starts, and Patton鈥檚 eyes are watering, but he鈥檚 nodding along. 鈥淚鈥 love you, padre, and I know I鈥檝e hurt you. I鈥檓 so sorry for my terrible reactions, because I鈥檓 working on it, but it鈥檚 not fair that you got hurt by my horrible behaviour and beliefs.鈥
They hadn鈥檛 been only Roman鈥檚 beliefs. Roman had been doing what he was told. But that鈥檚 not what would make Patton feel better. And besides, Roman is right, his behaviour was (and still is) awful.
Patton nods once more, before swallowing hard.
鈥淭hank you, Roman,鈥 he says softly, voice bubbling with emotions that are spilling over as tears, but it鈥檚 not weeping, nor sobbing, nor screaming, so it鈥檚 going better than Roman had hoped.
Janus seems impressed. Roman shifts on his feet once more, debating leaving it there and then hating himself for even having that thought. Coward.
鈥淎nd鈥 Janus,鈥 he says, formally, and Janus flinches because it鈥檚 the first time Roman鈥檚 ever used his name. 鈥淚鈥 am sorry for shutting you out and calling you evil. I鈥︹
Roman rolls his shoulders. He can鈥檛 say I didn鈥檛 know any better without Patton-related strings attached, and really, he should鈥檝e known better, shouldn鈥檛鈥檝e he?
鈥淚t was ignorant,鈥 he says instead. 鈥淎nd it was wrong. And I鈥檓 sorry. You are valuable and important, and I鈥檓 sorry for doubting you.鈥
Janus looks stunned. Roman turns and hurries away, choking down sudden and inexplicable tears. As he mounts the stairs, he adds one last thing.
鈥淚鈥檓 sorry for laughing at your name,鈥 he calls. 鈥淛anus is a good, strong name, and it suits you.鈥
And he hurries upstairs as they stare after him, but he doesn鈥檛 miss Janus turning away to wrap his arms around Patton in a tight hug.
Roman doesn鈥檛 return to Logan鈥檚 room. He crawls into his own bed, taking a moment to try and enjoy the comfort, and struggles to fall asleep for the rest of the night. He can鈥檛 stop shivering.
鈥e鈥檚 cold.
Roman knows it鈥檚 all too good to be true. That, he tells himself, is why he鈥檚 locking his door with him inside. He snuck back downstairs to steal a good few days worth of supplies from the kitchen, and he isn鈥檛 coming out.
Logan knocks on his door at 10am. Roman does not answer.
Logan comes back on the hour, every hour. At 7pm, he sighs, and Roman waits to hear the footsteps that signal he鈥檚 leaving, but they don鈥檛 come.
鈥淗ave I offended you, Roman?鈥
Roman jumps, and he knocks his glass off his desk by accident, and it shatters.
鈥淪hit,鈥 he hisses, and stumbles away from his chair to try and find something in his room to clean it up. The glass has gone everywhere. He accidentally steps in it. He should鈥檝e worn shoes. 鈥淪hit, shit, shit, shit-鈥
鈥淩oman, is everything alright?!鈥
鈥淚 just knocked a glass over!鈥 he calls, trying to make it sound a lot less painful than it is. He regrets having white carpet. This鈥檒l be a pain to clean.
鈥淩oman, let me in, or I鈥檓 picking the lock.鈥
Logan鈥檚 voice leaves no room for argument, and he鈥檚 beginning to freak out a little if he鈥檚 being honest, so Roman stumbles over to the door and unlocks it, cursing himself for breaking so quickly, and grabs Logan鈥檚 arms as his darling nerd rushes in.
鈥淢ind the glass,鈥 he says faintly.
Logan looks down, and his expression drops, and he scoops Roman up and carries him to the bed, away from the mess.
鈥淟et鈥檚 patch you up first, alright?鈥 Logan soothes, and he hurries off to find a first aid kid, and he returns with Virgil, who winces at the sight of Roman鈥檚 feet but fetches the vacuum cleaner to hoover up the glass thoroughly.
Logan kneels on the carpet, eyes flicking up to Roman鈥檚 every few seconds as he carefully removes the glass and cleans the wounds, before bandaging Roman鈥檚 feet.
Roman makes the mistake of making eye contact with Logan, and the genuine concern in Logan鈥檚 eyes chokes him and almost brings Roman to tears then and there. So his eyes flick around the room instead, to anywhere but Logan鈥檚 face.
Virgil quickly leaves, and they hear him call for someone, and then he drags Remus back into the room and points at the stains.
鈥淵ou know how to get blood out of carpet still?鈥 he asks.
鈥淵ep,鈥 Remus replies. 鈥淟et me get my shit together.鈥 And he hurries away to fetch whatever cleaning products he needs.
鈥淟et鈥檚 get you out of here, hm?鈥 Logan says, and he鈥檚 extending his arms to pick Roman up.
鈥淣o,鈥 Roman says immediately, curling in on himself. Virgil and Logan stare at him.
鈥淚鈥檓 fine, thanks.鈥
鈥淩oman,鈥 Virgil shakes his head. 鈥溾ou don鈥檛 want to be in the room when Remus starts on the stains. Those chemicals, man鈥︹
Roman puts his head in his hands, before forcing the tension out of his shoulders, and silently gets to his feet.
鈥淟et me-鈥 Logan鈥檚 already fawning.
鈥淣o,鈥 Roman cuts him off, and he hobbles out of his room with his lips set in a hard line. They are calling to him. He hobbles to the bathroom, and once again locks the door.
Footsteps stop on the other side of the door as Roman perches on the edge of the bathtub. The door handle rattles uselessly.
鈥淩oman,鈥 Logan calls again. 鈥淚 wasn鈥檛 joking about picking locks.鈥
鈥淚 don鈥檛 care,鈥 Roman snaps back, and he hears the tense silence that follows it. 鈥淟eave me alone, why don鈥檛 you?鈥
鈥溾oman, what鈥檚 happened?鈥
鈥淣othing,鈥 Roman pulls his hair and tries not to think about Janus and Patton and Patton and Janus. 鈥淣othing that matters.鈥
鈥淚f it upset you, it matters,鈥 Logan shoots back. And Roman is taken aback by how upset Logan sounds. 鈥淩oman, please, let me help you.鈥
鈥淚f you want to help,鈥 Roman calls back, not really thinking, 鈥渢hen spend your time on something useful, why don鈥檛 you? Has Janus gotten fully settled into his new room yet? And perhaps you can move Remus into mine.鈥
Dead silence.
鈥淛ust go make yourself useful,鈥 Roman pushes on, and he鈥檚 crying before he knows it. 鈥淎nd leave me behind.鈥
鈥淚 don鈥檛 want to leave you behind,鈥 Logan snaps, and it鈥檚 sudden and raw and grieving. 鈥淩oman, you don鈥檛 think you鈥檙e useful? You have stripped us down to pure utility? That鈥檚 not healthy.鈥
鈥淚鈥檓 not healthy!鈥
He can almost hear how Logan and Virgil must be glancing at each other.
鈥淚鈥 Don鈥檛 you guys get it? Thomas is unhappy because of unhealthy thinking, thinking which I participated in and perpetuated. Everything that鈥檚 gone wrong is because of me.鈥
鈥淔alsehood,鈥 Logan breaks his silence. 鈥淚鈥 I have been the root of the problem before.鈥
鈥淟ike, once,鈥 Roman scoffs. 鈥淧atton would have learnt what we were believing was actually wrong if I hadn鈥檛 been there backing him up. Perpetuated it.鈥
鈥淚 don鈥檛 think that鈥檚 right,鈥 Virgil calls softly.
鈥淚 don鈥檛 care what you think,鈥 Roman snaps, and immediately hates himself for it. The ice in his tone is unmistakeable and oh, he just can鈥檛 stop himself from hurting people, can he? He can hear Virgil鈥檚 sharp inhale through the door.
鈥淚鈥檓 sorry,鈥 he immediately follows up. 鈥淚鈥 I didn鈥檛 mean that.鈥
鈥溾 know,鈥 Virgil says, before Roman hears one person move away from the door.
鈥淩oman,鈥 Logan says, and it makes sense, Roman supposes, that Logan is the last one there. 鈥淧lease鈥 You aren鈥檛 at fault for Patton鈥檚 mistakes.鈥
鈥淣o,鈥 Roman cuts him off. 鈥淵ou鈥檒l upset him if you word it that way.鈥
鈥淲hat, if I hold him accountable for what he鈥檚 done?鈥 Logan shoots back, and he sounds angry now. 鈥淩oman, you can鈥檛 magically make Patton pure and innocent by taking all the blame. Patton made mistakes. So has Janus. So did you. So have I. And Virgil!鈥
鈥淩emus hasn鈥檛.鈥
鈥淵es, but Remus is a kettle of fish all of his own. 鈥t鈥檚 a strange metaphor. 鈥楰ettle of fish鈥. Why would you keep fish in a kettle?鈥
鈥淔ocus, nerd,鈥 Roman says tiredly, and he shakes his head though Logan can鈥檛 see it. 鈥淟ook, I get what you mean. I don鈥檛 think you鈥檙e right, but I get what you mean.鈥
There鈥檚 a quiet, and then there are footsteps, and quiet voices. Roman strains his ears, staring at the bathroom wall, and flinches as Patton begins to talk.
鈥淗eya, Roman.鈥
He doesn鈥檛 trust himself to reply. He鈥檚 shaking. The blood is roaring in his ears. Patton says something else and Roman can鈥檛 reply because he doesn鈥檛 actually hear what Patton says. He can鈥檛 hear, he can鈥檛 breathe, he can鈥檛 compute anything and he can鈥檛 help himself when he stumbles towards the door and fumbles with the door handle before he distantly remembers he had locked it.
鈥淚 can鈥檛鈥,鈥 he gasps out, voice shrill and panicky. 鈥淚-I can鈥檛-鈥
There is a sound of rattling and jostling from the other side of the door, before it opens, and Roman falls forward onto someone, who barely catches him but now that Roman鈥檚 attached he鈥檚 not letting go, and he鈥檚 crying in earnest and trying to gasp for air and failing. They sink to the floor. It鈥檚 nice to have nowhere left to fall.
鈥淚t鈥檚 okay,鈥 someone tells him. 鈥淩oman, I need to you take nice and deep breaths for me, okay?鈥
Roman does as he鈥檚 told, but everything鈥檚 racing too fast, and the air wooshes in and out of his lungs too fast and he鈥檚 lightheaded but he can鈥檛 stop.
鈥淪low,鈥 the voice corrects, and they pull him in close, whoever鈥檚 holding him. 鈥淣ice and slow breaths, Roman. I need to follow my instructions, okay? I鈥檓 going to count to four, Roman, and I want you to breathe in until I get to four.鈥
The voice does, and Roman obeys.
鈥淣ow, hold it while I count to seven, okay?鈥
The voice counts to seven and Roman holds his breath.
鈥淕reat, now breathe out as I count to eight. Go slow, your lungs should be empty on eight.鈥
And the voice counts, and Roman tries to control it but his breath still leaves him a little fast. But the voice isn鈥檛 angry. In fact, it seems to be quite the opposite.
鈥淕reat,鈥 it soothes. 鈥淎nd again, Roman. In for four. We鈥檙e going to go until you are calm.鈥
And they do.
When Roman finally blinks back to himself, he鈥檚 on the floor, on his knees, with his arms locked tightly around Logan, who鈥檚 been the one guiding him through the breathing exercises. There is another set of arms around them, and Roman doesn鈥檛 lift his head from Logan鈥檚 chest to see who it is, because if it鈥檚 who he thinks it is, he鈥檚 going to break.
His steady breathing hitches, and he starts crying on the spot. 鈥is feet hurt.
鈥淟ogan, can I?鈥 says the person-he-doesn鈥檛-want-to-identify, and Logan hesitates, before pulling away, ripping a whimper out of Roman, before he鈥檚 pulled against someone else鈥檚 chest 鈥 someone soft and steady and warm and light-blue and Patton pulls Roman into his lap and cradles him close as Roman can鈥檛 stop shaking.
鈥淚鈥檓 sorry,鈥 Patton whispers to him. 鈥淚鈥檓 so sorry.鈥
The floodgates open. Roman falls sobbing onto Patton鈥檚 shoulder and finally lets Patton hold him tight.
They need to talk. In fact, they probably should鈥檝e done it then. But Roman is exhausted, and he can鈥檛 help himself but fall asleep in Patton鈥檚 arms, still clutching him tightly because even in unconsciousness Roman can鈥檛 let go, can鈥檛 let that touch escape.
Patton staggers to his feet with Roman cradled in his arms, struggling a little but not accepting Logan鈥檚 offer to carry him.
鈥淗e just鈥 fell asleep?鈥
鈥淩oman has been struggling with many things, recently. Touch starvation and sleep deprivation are two of them,鈥 Logan tells him, gently reaching out to brush Roman鈥檚 hair back off his forehead.
Patton doesn鈥檛 comment on how tender the look on Logan鈥檚 face is. He winces, however, as Roman murmurs something in his sleep, and curls in closer to Patton鈥檚 chest.
鈥淚 imagine he feels safe,鈥 Logan continues, hand falling back to his side. 鈥淪o he just鈥 shut down.鈥
Patton tears up, and looks away.
鈥淚 don鈥檛 deserve that,鈥 he hums, and he hefts Roman in his arms. 鈥淚鈥 I don鈥檛 deserve his trust.鈥
鈥淚 don鈥檛 think that鈥檚 right either,鈥 Logan tells him quietly, a hand on Patton鈥檚 shoulder, and Patton shivers at the touch. 鈥淵ou two鈥 you two seem to assume everyone hates you. I can assure you that is not the case.鈥
Patton鈥檚 eyes are wide and watery, and his arms are beginning to strain.
鈥淗ere,鈥 Logan offers. 鈥淟et鈥檚 go downstairs, and you and Roman can sit on the couch together, alright?鈥
The moment Logan gets them settled, Patton has leant back into the corner of the couch, stretched out, and settles Roman against his chest, between his legs. With a sleepy murmur, Roman settles against Patton and hums to himself, and Logan鈥檚 heart wrenches at how gaunt the prince looks.
There is someone at the top of the stairs.
Logan turns on his heel and looks up. Janus is there, taking his hat off and pressing it to his chest as he watches Roman.
Janus watches him, his and Patton鈥檚 eyes meeting before Patton鈥檚 flitter away. Only then does Janus seem to be aware that Logan is looking at him.
鈥淗e certainly is a good actor,鈥 Janus says, his voice hanging in the air.
Patton flinches, and his grip on Roman loosens.
鈥淎 good actor?鈥 Logan echoes, and he can鈥檛 help the ice that creeps into his tone. 鈥淚s that what you think, Deceit?鈥
Janus looks at Logan in surprise, like he doesn鈥檛 expect Logan to disagree with him.
鈥淵ou think everything Roman is going through is for attention?鈥 Logan鈥檚 voice is rising and he can鈥檛 help himself, because Janus doesn鈥檛 know the first thing about what Roman has done to himself. 鈥淵ou鈥檙e saying he acted out a panic attack? You鈥檙e saying he acted out starving himself? Walking on glass for attention? You鈥檙e saying his touch starvation is a lie? Because I have eyes, Deceit, and I鈥檝e been using them, and Roman鈥檚 not鈥 Roman鈥檚 not been okay for a long time.鈥
Logan takes a physical step back and has to wipe the skin under his eyes because he鈥檚 not sure when he of all people started crying but here they are, before pressing on - 鈥渁nd just because you are so accustomed to seeing him fake being okay, it does not make you the expert on when he isn鈥檛.鈥
Janus has recoiled, and as Logan looks back up at him, Logan can clearly see in his mismatched eyes that Janus is beginning to realise his mistake.
鈥淎 lot of what Roman is struggling with,鈥 Logan grits out, forcing himself to lower his voice again, 鈥渉as to do with your meddling, Deceit.鈥
鈥淚 have a name,鈥 Janus says quietly, and he sounds fragile enough that Logan winces, regret finally dulling his anger.
He takes a moment to gather himself. He adjust his tie.
鈥溾anus,鈥 Logan corrects himself, and he sees how Janus鈥 eyes widen once more, like he didn鈥檛 actually expect Logan to be the bigger person here at all. 鈥淚 know you pride yourself on being observant, but you have spent your time comforting Patton. I know this, and I appreciate that, at least. But you have neglected Roman. You have used Roman. I know you are in a better position because of your efforts, in Thomas鈥 books and in your own, but you have dragged him down in order to get there.鈥
Logan is breathing hard. He鈥檚 struggling to keep his composure.
鈥淟ogan,鈥 Patton says, and Logan flinches, balling his fists. He鈥檇 forgotten Patton was there. He鈥檚 shaking. He doesn鈥檛 know why. 鈥淟ogan, it鈥檚 okay. We鈥 we know.鈥
鈥淒o you?鈥 Logan shoots back before he can think.
鈥淲e do now,鈥 Patton replies sombrely. 鈥淚 led Roman astray, and I need to make it up to him.鈥
鈥淵ou don鈥檛 owe him anything,鈥 Janus counters, and it sounds like a conversation they鈥檝e had before.
鈥淭hat鈥檚 not really true,鈥 Patton shakes his head, voice suddenly thick with emotion. 鈥淛an, we both owe Roman something. An apology. He apologised to us, and we can鈥檛 even return the favour? We aren鈥檛 blameless.鈥
Patton drops his chin.
鈥淚鈥檓 not blameless,鈥 he repeats, and he brushes the hair that oh-so-wants to fall over Roman鈥檚 forehead back once more.
He is quiet.
Logan turns back to Janus, who is shaking his head silently.
鈥淒o you really think,鈥 Logan whispers, in awe 鈥 but not in a good way 鈥 鈥渢hat you are faultless here? You think you have nothing to apologise for?鈥
His voice is rising again. He can鈥檛 help it.
Janus doesn鈥檛 reply, but he looks away, and that鈥檚 answer enough for Logan, who鈥檚 flushing with the audacity of this bitch.
鈥淚 can鈥檛 believe you,鈥 he hisses. 鈥淚 can鈥檛 believe you! When will you learn that actions have consequences? That if you try to silence someone enough they will bite back? Why can鈥檛 you accept that when you beat someone down enough times they will stay down?鈥
Janus is staring at him, his gaze calculating.
鈥淭his is personal, isn鈥檛 it?鈥 he asks quietly.
Logan rakes his hands through his hair. 鈥淣o,鈥 he lies through is teeth, before relenting. 鈥溾ctually, you know what? Yes. Yes, it is, Janus. 聽I do not take kindly to being silenced. And also, as someone who for the past two months has been dedicated to Roman鈥檚 recovery, you also made it personal the moment you made him spiral.鈥
Janus flinches, before his eyes narrow.
鈥淵ou think you鈥檙e so pure?鈥 he spits out. 鈥淒o you even know what you did to Remus?鈥
Logan stares, and his gaze then falls. He hasn鈥檛 really thought about it much. Never really considered it. Remus never seemed to be anything other than amiable to him. But now he thinks about it鈥 His heart is in his throat.
鈥淒on鈥檛 talk to me about making someone spiral,鈥 Janus hisses.
鈥淚 had no idea,鈥 Logan says limply. 鈥淚鈥 I am not good with the consequences of my actions. I will strive to reconcile with Remus, if he is willing.鈥
Janus flinches again. The look on his face shifts into something almost more unhinged. Desperate. 鈥淗ow do you do that?鈥 he demands, clinging to the bannister. 鈥淛ust鈥 accept you were wrong?鈥
Logan is wringing his tie.
鈥淲ith a lot of grief,鈥 he says quietly. 鈥淎 lot of introspection. A lot of guilt. A lot of anger. And a lot of 鈥ractice. I am not perfect, but I am getting better. I am not saying I鈥檝e never made Remus spiral. Or Roman spiral. Or Virgil. Or even Patton, because I know I have. But I want to be better than that.鈥
He shakes his head, and he鈥檚 pacing now.
鈥淚 hate being wrong,鈥 he says. 鈥淒on鈥檛 you understand? Being wrong goes against all that is expected of me.鈥
He hears a hum of sympathy from Patton.
鈥淏ut I need to understand when I am, or I鈥檒l never grow. I can鈥檛 do that to Thomas, and I can鈥檛 do that to all of you. I now realise I鈥檝e hurt Roman many times in the past and I refuse to continue doing so. But I need you to understand what you鈥檝e done, Janus. And I need you to understand that there are things you need to fix.鈥
鈥淚 know that,鈥 Janus says faintly. 鈥淚鈥 my life is full of mistakes that I need to fix. I have exactly one stable relationship, and he is avoiding me right now. I know that.鈥
鈥淭hen do something about it,鈥 Logan snaps. 鈥淩egret gets nothing done.鈥
Janus looks at him with wide and tired eyes, and realises that everything Logan has said is raw and real 鈥 if the haggard look in Logan鈥檚 eyes is anything to go by.
He goes to say more, before the sound chokes him, stops his breath in his throat, and Janus pauses, before his eyes fall on Roman, and he loses his courage, turning on his heel and sweeping away to his room.
Logan watches him go, and tries to unclench his fists.
He turns slowly on his heel, gaze downturned as his eyes prick with shame as he faces Patton.
鈥淟ogan, look at me, hon.鈥
Logan raises his chin, and the breath rushes out of him like he鈥檚 been punched in the stomach as he realises just how soft the look on Patton鈥檚 face is.
鈥淵ou鈥檙e right,鈥 Patton says softly. 鈥淵ou鈥檙e exceptional, Logan, and you鈥檙e observant and kind. Thank you for being there when I wasn鈥檛.鈥
鈥淚鈥檇 do anything for him,鈥 Logan says before he can think about it, and Patton watches the heat rise to Logan鈥檚 face, before Patton rolls his shoulders and scrunches his face in concentration.
The sofa shimmers and expands in width with a thought.
鈥淗ere,鈥 Patton says softly, extending one arm to Logan, and Logan can鈥檛 help but notice how Patton鈥檚 hand is shaking. 鈥淐ome lay down with us, if you want.鈥
Logan has all but crossed the room before he can think about saying no. He takes Patton鈥檚 hand and kicks off his shoes, taking off his and Patton鈥檚 glasses and setting them aside, before he finally hesitates.
鈥淚t鈥檚 alright,鈥 Patton hums, and he gently tugs Logan down. Logan goes easily. He curls up against Patton鈥檚 side, face heating up, and loops one of his arms around Roman鈥檚 waist.
He shivers as Patton wraps his other arm around him.
鈥淵ou look tired,鈥 Patton hums, and Logan yawns despite himself. 鈥淗ow鈥檚 about you get some sleep, too?鈥
Logan decides to just nod and close his eyes. He doesn鈥檛 have the spoons left to argue.
They all end up falling asleep like that.
Roman wakes up surrounded by warmth, and he is pressed flat against someone鈥檚 steadily rising-and-falling chest. There is something playing in the background, like the TV. There are arms around him, more than one person鈥檚 arms, unless that person has more than two arms.
Janus has more than two arms.
Roman bolts upright, jerked awake by that alarming thought. All he does is jolt Patton and Logan awake too, and they stare up at him blearily as Roman鈥檚 heartbeat slows back to its normal tempo, and his face is hot with embarrassment as Logan sits up.
鈥淗ello,鈥 he says softly, and his voice is gravelly from sleep.
Roman has to bite his lip, because it sounds really cute.
鈥淗i,鈥 Patton also says, and Roman lets him sit up properly, and they all end up in a sort of triangle, facing each other. 鈥溾ow are you, Roman?鈥
Roman is fiddling with his sash. He is cold and shivering, and Logan opens his arms and Roman can鈥檛 stop himself from crawling towards him and letting Logan wrap him up in a tight embrace.
鈥淥kay,鈥 he says, because he doesn鈥檛 feel awful. Well, he sort of does, but鈥 like, he鈥檚 certainly felt worse. And his feet are very sore. But he has, again, had worse.
Two pairs of spectacled eyes turn on him, with various disbelieving looks in their eyes.
鈥淲hat?鈥 Roman sits back, peels Logan鈥檚 hands off him because now he鈥檚 self-conscious. Logan makes a noise of protest, and reaches for him again, but Roman鈥檚 scooted out of the way.
Logan shivers, and wraps his arms around himself instead, mumbling an apology.
鈥淩oman,鈥 Patton says firmly, and both of their eyes are on Morality now as Patton runs his hand through his hair, swallowing hard. 鈥淚 owe you something.鈥
鈥淵ou鈥?鈥 Roman looks confused. 鈥淵ou don鈥檛 owe me anything, Padre.鈥
鈥淚 owe you an apology,鈥 Patton pushes, shaking his head firmly. 鈥淵ou gave me such a beautiful apology the other night, and I just stood there and took it.鈥
Logan blinks at this information, before turning and looking at Roman with a worried sort of look.
鈥淲hen did this happen?鈥 he asks.
鈥淚t was, like, two in the morning, specs,鈥 Roman shrugs it off as best he can. 鈥淚 went to go get some water and鈥 they were downstairs. So I, you know, thought I pull a Virgil. Rip the band aid off, and all that. They deserved an apology.鈥
Logan glances at Patton, and Patton shifts in his seat.
鈥淚 don鈥檛 know if we did,鈥 Patton counters quietly. 鈥淚鈥 plus, it鈥檚 not fair of us to take your apology and not offer one back when we鈥檝e also hurt you.鈥
鈥淚t鈥︹ Roman goes to say something, but he can鈥檛 figure out what, before he shrugs again, and settles on 鈥渋t doesn鈥檛 matter much, Patton. I just want you to be happy.鈥
Patton recoils, glancing panickedly at Logan, who has turned to Roman and reached out to him again. Roman looks away.
鈥淧lease,鈥 Logan says, and his voice is tiny and vulnerable in a way neither of them - Logan鈥檚 oldest friends - have heard before. 鈥淧lease don鈥檛 push us away.鈥
Roman is rooted to the spot, and Patton realises the prince is crying again.
鈥淲e love you, Roman,鈥 Logan continues, and Patton鈥檚 nodding but he has a funny feeling this admission is a lot more personal than Logan will let on. 鈥淎nd we can鈥檛 stand seeing you break yourself like this.鈥
鈥淚 deserve it!鈥 Roman suddenly snaps, and Patton is too stunned to reply but Logan has already moved closer, and he鈥檚 taken Roman鈥檚 hands in his own.
鈥淵ou don鈥檛,鈥 Logan says firmly. 鈥淵ou do not deserve this. This is a fact.鈥
鈥淚 didn鈥檛 mean to drive you so hard,鈥 Patton pipes up, causing Roman鈥檚 head to snap towards him. 鈥淚 didn鈥檛 mean to put the blinkers on, you know? Just angle down on what we thought we knew, about good and bad and stuff. I鈥 I鈥檓 shaken up about it, still, and I will be for a long time.鈥
Patton rubs his throat and looks away. His face is hot with shame but when he does meet Roman鈥檚 eyes, they are sympathetic and gleaming.
鈥淎nd you鈥檙e allowed to be shaken by it too,鈥 Patton finishes. 鈥淵ou should be. Everything we know has been altered. It鈥檚 not necessarily completely wrong, but鈥 we turned to the wrong page, is all. Got the wrong edition out at the library. We鈥︹
Patton shrugs hopelessly again.
鈥淚 get it,鈥 Roman says, and his voice is low and wobbly and he looks like he probably won鈥檛 be able to stop crying for a while.
鈥淪o what I鈥檓 trying to say, Roman,鈥 Patton holds up a shaky finger, 鈥渋s I鈥檓 sorry. Both of our worlds have been turned upside down, and I was so caught up in my own head that I didn鈥檛 stop to think about you.鈥
鈥淵ou have to focus on yourself sometimes,鈥 Roman shrugs. 鈥淚 don鈥檛 blame you.鈥
鈥淲hile I realise that Roman鈥檚 insinuations with that last statement are self-deprecating,鈥 Logan jumps in, 鈥渉e鈥檚 right. Taking time for yourself is not something one needs to apologise for.鈥
Patton notices, while Logan is facing him and talking to him, that Roman is looking at Logan鈥檚 face, admiring his profile.
Patton sees the little smile on Roman鈥檚 lips.
They鈥檒l be good for each other, Patton thinks with satisfaction.
Logan looks back at Roman, to check in with him, and catches that little adoring look before Roman can wipe it away, and he flushes.
鈥淯m,鈥 he says.
鈥淯h,鈥 Roman stammers.
Patton giggles at them, and swings his legs over the edge of the couch to put his shoes back on.
鈥淐鈥檓on,鈥 he says, 鈥渓et鈥檚 have some lunch! Can we have a picnic?鈥
He likes the way Roman鈥檚 face lights up at the idea.
They have a picnic, and everyone is invited. It is a repeat of Logan鈥檚 and Roman鈥檚 from the other day, the living room transformed into a suitable space.
Everyone is invited, and they鈥檙e waiting for the last two to arrive. Remus is loitering at the top of the stairs, talking to someone just out of sight.
鈥淚t鈥檚 okay, Jan,鈥 Roman hears him coax. 鈥淭hey invited all of us.鈥
There鈥檚 a quiet reply that Roman doesn鈥檛 catch, but he has already gone stiff.
鈥淭hat鈥檚 not true,鈥 he hears Remus murmur. 鈥淵ou know that鈥檚 not true.鈥
He doesn鈥檛 catch the reply.
鈥淲ell, I鈥檓 not going without you,鈥 Remus declares. 鈥淪o either we both come down or we鈥檙e chilling in your room today.鈥
There鈥檚 a moment, before Roman watches his brother nod, and go back upstairs. 鈥淭hat鈥檚 okay,鈥 Remus murmurs. 鈥淭hat鈥檚 okay. Let鈥檚 go, alright?鈥
The four sitting on the floor are watching this, watch them walk away, before they all exchange quiet glances. Patton鈥檚 and Logan鈥檚 are far more knowing than Roman is probably comfortable with.
鈥淚 think鈥 I need to talk to them,鈥 Logan mumbles, and he鈥檚 picking at the inside seam of his jeans as he shoots glances at Patton. 鈥淚 think I made it worse.鈥
鈥淚 think you gave him something important to think about,鈥 Patton shakes his head. 鈥淛ust like he did you.鈥
Virgil is glancing around at everyone, thoroughly bewildered. 鈥淲hat the fuck happened,鈥 he demanded, gesturing pointedly at them with his wineglass of Gatorade, 鈥渨hile I was asleep?鈥
They fill him in.
鈥淗uh,鈥 he says, very quietly, and doesn鈥檛 say anything more. In fact, the conversation lulls as Virgil sips at his drink, and the clouded look in his eyes gives them the impression he鈥檚 thinking about something that he鈥檇 rather not discuss.
Roman shivers, and curls up on himself a little, staring at the blanket beneath them. He鈥檚鈥 he鈥檚 certainly set something into motion, here. And he鈥檚 not sure whether it鈥檚 a good thing or a bad thing. But鈥 well, progress always starts rocky, right?
It does in his experience, at least.
It takes Logan a day to work up the courage to talk to Janus, and another day to find him. He鈥檚 like Roman 鈥 very good at being slippery when he wants to. And when he does find him, in Remus鈥 room, Remus blocks the door with a too-casual lean, and smiles a smile that is all-teeth and all-threat, and Logan bows his head and accepts the terms silently.
鈥淟et him in,鈥 Janus calls, his voice absolutely not wobbling, and Remus steps aside and gestures Logan in, closing the door behind them.
Remus鈥 room is like Roman鈥檚 room, except more of it is black and silver, and there is far more electric green everywhere. But it鈥檚 still cosy, and it鈥檚 tidier than he expected.
Janus is sitting on the floor, holding a hand of cards. It looks to be Uno, now Logan looks closer, and Remus sidesteps him to take up his place on the floor across from Janus and pick up his own hand of cards, before they both look up at Logan. Asking what he wants.
Janus looks fragile. Remus鈥 eyes meet his own with a challenge, and Logan immediately feels the dramatic irony of this situation.
After a moment, he sits down on the floor as well, turning their line into a triangle, and shuffles backwards a little to give them enough breathing room.
鈥淚f you鈥檙e busy,鈥 he says softly, nodding to the card deck, 鈥淚 can come back another time.鈥
They aren鈥檛 busy. It鈥檚 just Uno. But Logan is offering Janus a choice here 鈥 the choice to do this now, to do this at all.
Janus purses his lips, thinking for a moment. Then he takes seven cards from the pile, face-down, and slides them towards Logan.
鈥淣o,鈥 he says, 鈥渨e鈥檙e not busy.鈥
And thus begins the most emotionally charged game of Uno Logan has ever experienced. But after a few rounds, it becomes clear they are waiting for him to start with what he has come here for.
鈥淚鈥︹ he begins, and immediately cringes as he fumbles for what to actually say, crucially aware they are both staring at him now. 鈥淯m, oh, fuck, this isn鈥檛 how I wanted this to go.鈥
And the soft swear from him gets a snicker out of Remus, and that鈥檚 enough to sort-of break the ice, and Logan smiles even as he rubs his temple. 鈥淛ust, let me get my thoughts in order.鈥
And then Janus places a reverse card, and Logan takes a moment to make an indignant noise that makes Janus laugh too, before returning to trying to figure out what to say.
He sets his cards down (face down) as Remus plays his next card, and they turn to him, waiting to see what he鈥檒l do next.
鈥淯m,鈥 he starts again. 鈥淚鈥 I have a mental checklist, and I鈥檓 going to run down it. Forgive me if this is crude or impersonal.鈥
He takes a steadying breath in, and out, and turns to Remus.
鈥淚鈥檓 sorry,鈥 he says, and watches Remus blink in surprise.
鈥淲hat for?鈥 the duke hazards, cautious, but his eyes are surprisingly bright.
鈥淔or鈥︹ Logan trails off, rubs his forehead, before sighing and forging on. 鈥淔or鈥 how I treated you, your whole introductory episode.鈥
Remus freezes, like that was not what he expected Logan to say.
鈥淚 have been informed there were some鈥 undesired consequences of my actions towards you, and I never intended nor wished to hurt you. In fact, as I have grown to know you more, I can only respect you,鈥 Logan continued, stealing glances at Remus to check he was still listening.
Yes, he has Remus鈥 whole attention now. Those intense eyes are boring into his, growing brighter by the second, and then Remus pushes a hand to his mouth as he tries to keep his emotions at bay. The saltwater leaking down his cheeks does not obey his wishes.
Logan starts to reach out to him, before he catches himself, knowing that this isn鈥檛 his place.
鈥淭hat鈥檚 what I鈥檓 sorry for,鈥 he finishes lamely. 鈥淚鈥檇 go as far to call you my friend, Remus, and I cannot stand the fact that I have clearly done something to hurt you, and never rectified that.鈥
鈥淚 accept,鈥 Remus whispers. 鈥淚 accept your apology. Thank you. I鈥 I鈥檒l be frank, I just assumed you secretly hated me.鈥
鈥淚 do not,鈥 Logan immediately counters, shaking his head imploringly. 鈥淚 really do not hate you.鈥
Remus lets his hand fall from his mouth 鈥 to reveal he鈥檚 smiling.
鈥淚鈥檇 say I鈥檓 sorry for throwing shurikens at you,鈥 he banters, 鈥渂ut I鈥檓 really not. That was fun.鈥
Logan snorts. 鈥淔un鈥檚 certainly a word for it,鈥 he agrees, pointedly rubbing his head where they had once been lodged. Sometimes, he gets headaches 鈥 pain flaring up from those old and non-existent wounds, and it doesn鈥檛 make sense but he has no choice but to live through it. And besides, it鈥檚 a small price to pay for getting back onto even ground with Remus.
And now that he has found that even ground with Remus鈥
Logan turns to Janus, and bites his lip.
Janus is watching him very closely. And Logan realises he鈥檚 looking for dishonesty. Looking for any proof that Logan is playing with them. But Logan doesn鈥檛 like to think he could be that cruel.
鈥淚鈥檓 sorry,鈥 he blurts, and personally, he is amazed at how quickly tears have sprung to his eyes, though they haven鈥檛 leaked over yet 鈥 and he can see how Janus all but flinches at how raw Logan鈥檚 voice is.
This is good. This shows Janus that Logan鈥檚 being genuine. Because Logan isn鈥檛 a good actor, and they both know it. And Logan is trusting them with a lot right now 鈥 with his real, genuine emotions, and those are things he鈥檇 rather take to his grave if he could.
But it鈥檚 important to be genuine, so genuine he shall be.
鈥淚 will not deny that I meant a lot of what I said,鈥 he continues, taking off his glasses so he can rub his eyes as subtly as possible, 鈥渂ut the insults were fuelled by my own frustration, and were not only uncalled for, but鈥 bloated, if that makes sense.鈥
鈥淚t does,鈥 Janus nods, and when Logan dares to meet his eyes, Janus also seems on the brink of tears 鈥 fragile indeed 鈥 but is offering him a surprisingly understanding smile. 鈥淚 think鈥 it might be a safe statement to make that I was also fuelled by frustration.鈥
鈥淚t鈥檚 easy to take sides,鈥 Logan agrees, putting his glasses back on. 鈥淏ut I think it鈥檚 the last thing any of us need. And 鈥atton and Roman have made up, it seems.鈥
鈥淭hat鈥檚鈥 good,鈥 Janus murmurs, and his gaze falls back down to his cards. 鈥淭hat鈥檚 good.鈥
His tone makes Logan think that maybe Janus doesn鈥檛 actually believe that. But he doesn鈥檛 push. He just picks up his cards and puts one down.
Maybe there鈥檚 more to say. Logan isn鈥檛 sure if he鈥檚 said enough. But this is where Janus wants to end it, so Logan will not drag it out any further.
God, he doesn鈥檛 know how much more emotional shit he can take. It鈥檚 exhausting.
The next movie night, Roman shows up first and constructs his pillowed throne, and is lounging when Virgil and Logan arrive. He鈥檚 comfortable, he鈥檚 in his element, and he鈥檚 ready for anything.
Janus walks downstairs.
Okay, he鈥檚 ready for most things. This is perhaps one of the few things that he would have to admit that he did not consider himself 鈥榬eady鈥 for.
Well, it鈥檚 probably overdue, right? If Roman can鈥檛 learn to play nice, then they鈥檒l never be able to pick up the pieces for Thomas 鈥 and that鈥檚 what it鈥檚 all about, in the end. And Roman鈥 Roman has been selfish for too long.
(is selfish bad? It always felt like a loaded term and now he doesn鈥檛 know what to think about it)
Janus is not in his usual attire. In fact, he almost looks less comfortable, despite the comfort clothes he鈥檚 wearing. And Roman can鈥檛 help but stare 鈥 because he鈥檚 wearing pyjamas, of all things. A plain yellow sleep shirt and a pair of black linen trousers, and as he draws closer Roman can see the yellow plaid on them.
Janus clears his throat. 鈥淚 apologise,鈥 he rubs his arm, not really looking Roman in the eye, but not really looking away. 鈥淚 don鈥檛鈥 I don鈥檛 do onesies.鈥
It鈥檚 okay, because Roman鈥檚 also just in normal pyjamas and not in a onesie either, but鈥 Janus has made a clear effort, and it鈥檚鈥 it鈥檚 a nice effort.
Roman scrambles to his feet before he realises it, like a host greeting his guests. Logan and Virgil are on the sofa, and their conversation fell silent the moment Janus walked in, but they don鈥檛 seem too concerned. Maybe they didn鈥檛 expect this to be as civil as it is. Roman doesn鈥檛 know whether that鈥檚 a compliment or an insult.
鈥淭hat鈥檚 alright,鈥 he manages to force out, because the silence is getting a little long and they鈥檙e all looking at him for a response. 鈥淭hat鈥檚鈥 thank you for coming. Thank you for鈥 yeah.鈥
Wow. Real eloquent, Roman.
But Janus smiles, and it鈥檚 a nice and genuine smile and one Roman never expected to receive, and for the first time in a very long time there鈥檚 a flicker of hope in his chest that things might even work out.
Everyone trickles in, and Janus ends up sitting on the end of the sofa, beside Roman鈥檚 pillow throne. And he lounges there, elbow on the armrest, and they spend the evening slowly warming up to each other. By the end of the night, they are throwing barbs and references and jokes like no-one鈥檚 business, and when Janus stands up and leaves when it鈥檚 all over, Roman is crying before he knows it (just a little, it鈥檚 not like he鈥檚 sobbing, he鈥檚 just a touch overwhelmed).
But whatever noise he makes must be enough to reach Janus, because he snaps back around with wide eyes.
鈥淒id鈥 did I offend you?鈥 he asks, his voice thin, and he looks genuinely afraid.
鈥淣o!鈥 Roman is quick to drag the back of his wrist over his face and smile. 鈥淚 just鈥 I didn鈥檛 expect this to work. I鈥檓 glad it has, don鈥檛 get me wrong! I just鈥 didn鈥檛 expect it.鈥
And Janus smiles again, and nods, and Roman knows he understands, and says nothing more. Well, nothing other than,
鈥淕oodnight, Roman.鈥
Janus holds his gaze for a beat, a beat long enough to see the tension bleed out of the prince.
鈥淕oodnight, Janus,鈥 he replies, infusing Janus鈥 name with all the thanks he can, hoping it鈥檚 enough. 鈥淪weet dreams.鈥
Janus leaves, not one to drag conversations out, it seems, but he sees the little hop he does at the top of the stairs, where he thinks Roman can鈥檛 see him, and Roman screams into his hands for a moment to gather himself.
Thomas is hesitant to bring up Roman and Janus in the same sentence next meeting, but they show up, they are civil, and they even stand next to each other.
And Roman cracks a grin at Thomas鈥 bewilderment, and when he shoots Janus a glance, it widens as he sees a similar look on his face too.
鈥淟et鈥檚 say,鈥 he addresses Thomas鈥 careful question, 鈥渢hat we鈥檝e done some鈥 backstage work. We can work together. Especially for you.鈥
鈥淚 second that,鈥 Janus nods. 鈥淲e all have. Don鈥檛 worry about us.鈥
And Janus nudges Roman with his elbow, making Roman snort, but he still can鈥檛 help but rub the spot of contact as it burns delightfully.
His touch starvation has gotten better, especially with Logan helping him, but it certainly isn鈥檛 gone. And he can鈥檛 help but be ashamed, at times, of being that way and needing the help he needs, and sometimes it鈥檚 easier to hide away.
The thing is 鈥 now he doesn鈥檛 get away with it. It鈥檚 annoying, at times. But on the whole, it鈥檚 refreshing. Thomas eyes the two of them, searching for anything amiss, but Roman gives him a smile. A whole smile. A genuine smile. A smile he had fallen out of the habit of giving.
And Thomas sees. And Thomas beams back. And in that look, Roman can almost hear him saying welcome back, welcome home, I missed you.
He missed him too. So very much.
鈥淣ow,鈥 he declares, clapping his hands together and twisting his smile into something more mischievous, 鈥渨hat鈥檚 the plan, ocean man? What do you need us for?鈥
鈥淲ell,鈥 Thomas draws out, before pulling out a notebook and spreading it out on the coffee table, 鈥淚鈥檓 been roped in to help with a function, and I need you guys鈥 opinions.鈥
With a fluid movement, Janus sinks down to sit beside Thomas on the floor on one side, and Roman moves to the other, and the focus shifts into work mode without a second of arguing.
By god, Roman missed this.
A couple weeks later, it almost feels like loose ends have been tied up. Well, all but one. Because now Logan鈥檚 being flighty, and Roman鈥檚 going through the motions of being frustrated and terrified that he鈥檚 upset him 鈥 and that now he鈥檚 going to lose him.
But it鈥檚 about lunchtime when Logan knocks on his door, and when he opens it, Logan has a picnic basket tucked into the crook of his arm and a well-hidden look of apprehension on his face.
鈥淕reetings, Roman,鈥 he says formally, and Logan only gets extra formal when he鈥檚 nervous. 鈥淚 was wondering if you were busy.鈥
Roman is in the middle of something, he won鈥檛 lie, but one look at Logan鈥檚 face, and the basket, and his plans are out the window in a heartbeat.
鈥淚鈥檓 not busy,鈥 Roman folds his arms, cocks his hips, smiles, and notices that Logan swallows hard. 鈥淲hy, what鈥檚 up?鈥
鈥淚, uh,鈥 Logan fumbles, and he adjusts his tie, 鈥渨ould鈥 I was wondering, well, that, um. Would you join me for lunch?鈥
Oh, he鈥檚 cute when he鈥檚 flustered. And Roman takes that thought and shoves it down, hoping it doesn鈥檛 colour his cheeks, and smiles warmly.
鈥淚鈥檇 love to.鈥
鈥淕reat.鈥 Logan turns on his heel, and offers Roman his arm. Roman stares for a moment, before taking it and closing his bedroom door behind him, letting Logan lead him onwards.
They don鈥檛 go to the living room, like he expects, but Logan actually leads him to the Imagination, and the Imagination is active, and the scene is a beautiful little park with a fresh breeze ruffling soft grass and a blue sky that goes on forever, and it鈥檚 the most picturesque thing Roman鈥檚 ever seen.
Logan leads him over to a picnic blanket, already set up good to go, and helps Roman get seated, even though he really doesn鈥檛 need to, and Roman鈥檚 chuckling a little at him as Logan fusses, before setting down the basket and quickly unpacking with strangely practiced motions.
It鈥檚 pleasant. It鈥檚 extremely pleasant. Roman鈥檚 having a wonderful time. Patton and Virgil must鈥檝e helped with the food because it鈥檚 very good. Logan brought a book of sonnets and they pass it back and forth, reading their favourites, and Roman can鈥檛 help but compare Logan to a summer鈥檚 day at this rate, with how his smile is bright and his eyes shine with life, and the radiant way he watches Roman speak.
Roman has never felt so loved in his life. He wonders if he looks as moonstruck as he feels.
Logan finishes his last sonnet, letting the words ring in the air, before setting the book down slowly. It falls closed in Logan鈥檚 lap, and Logan stares down at it, like he鈥檚 waiting for something, and Roman lets himself fall still as he waits as well.
Logan closes his eyes, takes a deep breath in, and reaches into the basket one last time.
And this time, he pulls out an impossibly huge bouquet of red roses, and he hands it straight to Roman.
Roman takes it with shaking hands, admiring them with wide eyes. 鈥淭hey鈥檙e beautiful,鈥 he whispers, trying for the life of him to think of something more to add but he can鈥檛 help but be stunned.
鈥淚鈥︹ Logan rubs the back of his neck. 鈥淩ed roses鈥 are, in the language of flowers, associated with romantic love.鈥
Roman鈥檚 grip on the bouquet tightens. 鈥淭hey are,鈥 he agrees loosely, heart in his throat.
鈥淎nd,鈥 Logan forges on, 鈥渢hey are my gift to you. A-and those鈥 those statements are related.鈥
Roman is staring. He can鈥檛 help it. This is the most romantic thing anyone has ever done for him and also the most Logan thing he鈥檚 ever heard, and he鈥檚 extremely impressed that these two categories have actually crossed over in this way.
He doesn鈥檛 realise he鈥檚 spoken til the word leaves his lips.
Logan looks at him, looks at him with pure fondness that stops doubt dead in its tracks.
鈥淵ou,鈥 he confirms. 鈥淗ow could it be anyone else?鈥
Roman looks down at the bouquet in his hands, and suddenly his eyes are burning with unshed tears.
When he doesn鈥檛 reply, Logan quietly speaks again. 鈥溾 understand if this is unexpected, and you need to think on it, or too soon, or鈥 unwanted.鈥
And Roman realises his silence has been taken the wrong way, and he sets the bouquet down with the utmost of care, before getting up on his knees and pulling Logan into a tight, tight hug.
鈥淚t鈥檚 a surprise to be sure,鈥 he shakes his head, words pressed into Logan鈥檚 shoulder, 鈥渂ut I assure you it is a welcome one.鈥
鈥淒id you just Prequel-meme during my love confession?鈥
Roman snorts. He can鈥檛 help it. And he can鈥檛 keep it to one snort, either, and before he knows it he鈥檚 all but cackling into Logan鈥檚 chest, before he looks up with all the fondness he can muster.
鈥淚 might have,鈥 he says. 鈥淲ill my sins be forgiven with a kiss?鈥
Logan鈥檚 breath stops, and he looks like Roman鈥檚 just stunned him with a fish to the face. But the shock quickly breaks 鈥 breaks into a beautiful joy that lights up his eyes and that Roman just adores.
鈥淵ou鈥 absolutely,鈥 he agrees. He sounds breathless, like he didn鈥檛 think he鈥檇 get this far. 鈥淎t least one kiss will be enough, I think.鈥
Roman slips his arms around Logan and pulls him in close. 鈥淚鈥檒l pay your toll, though you drive a hard bargain,鈥 he jokes, and leans in.
Logan kisses him sweetly. It鈥檚 perfect except it鈥檚 far too short for Roman鈥檚 liking, but Logan pulls back to study his face, trying to commit this moment to memory. And how could Roman deny him that? Not when the weather鈥檚 so beautiful, the breeze is so gentle, and Logan鈥檚 hands are on the small of his back so warm and steady, and he can feel the rise and fall of Logan鈥檚 chest and know that they are here and are together and everything鈥檚 alright.
鈥淚s this okay?鈥 he asks, because despite himself he can鈥檛 help but wonder if he鈥檚 enough for Logan, but Logan gives him another quick peck that is more smile than kiss.
鈥淚t鈥檚 adequate,鈥 he banters, that gleam of life in his eye. 鈥淏ut there鈥檚 only one thing that鈥檇 make it better, I think.鈥
鈥淥h, I know,鈥 Roman smirks, before in a flurry of movement, he has Logan 鈥榩inned鈥 by the wrists on the picnic blanket. 鈥淢ore kisses. You think you鈥檙e going to end this anytime soon? I鈥檓 not letting you go for at least another hour.鈥
鈥淥nly an hour?鈥 Logan smirks back. 鈥淚 have three set aside just in case.鈥
鈥淚 think we鈥檒l manage,鈥 Roman rolls his eyes fondly as he dips down to kiss him again.
They spend the afternoon like that, giving each other little moments of sweetness and pressing silent thank-yous again and again into each other鈥檚 skin. Roman is no fool. Logan probably saved him, not that Logan would see it that way.
And Roman wouldn鈥檛 know it, but Logan feels the same way.
Patton is right. They鈥檙e good for each other.
And for once, it鈥檚 finally the start of something good.
--- --- --- --- --- ---
<|:) howdy guys hope that fic was as banging as i think it is. gonna tag some people who expressed interest (AKA interacted with the posts i made about this) for this lmao <3
@ironwoman359 @larkiaquail @ab-artist @treeni @i-really-like-dragons
and a some friends/people who mentioned a聽鈥榞eneral taglist鈥 might be a good idea :) @broadwaytheanimatedseries @leiasolo77 @merlybird500 @madamedraconis @witchesgetstitchesblog @quackerz-creations
anyway uhhh have a good night/day
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aberfaeth10 minutes ago
going a little crazy about for better or worse we change together. like that is a marriage vow. for better or worse. thats a MARRIAGE VOW, parker
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jacubesilvora10 minutes ago
Day Six of Bumbleby Week 2021: Found Family!
Sometimes, the journey is the real reward. That doesn't make the destination any less worthwhile.
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cacowhistle12 minutes ago
Notos Rising
Fandom: Dream SMP Relationships: Platonic SBI, Tommy & Tubbo & Ranboo Chapters: 2/? Additional Tags: Modern Fantasy & Supernatural Elements, Werewolf!Tommy, Fae!Wilbur, Vampire!Techno, Phil is just a guy
Fic Summary:
Tommy is a packless werewolf moving from house to house while his social worker tries to find a place for him to call home. Philza Minecraft is a human man whose house and farm sits in the crook between two ley lines, with two sons that are just as strange as the land itself.
It鈥檚 temporary, Tommy tells himself. He won鈥檛 stay here forever.
Don鈥檛 get attached, he reminds himself. The winds blow in from the south, and he begins to call this house home anyway.
Chapter Preview:
Once breakfast is all said and done with, Tommy finds himself left to his own devices. Phil heads out to the garden, Wilbur hasn鈥檛 come downstairs since he left, and Techno seats himself in the living room with a book.
Tommy doesn鈥檛 want to just sit up in his room all afternoon. So he tucks his hands in his pockets and heads out the front door, not bothering with shoes. He pauses in the front garden, curling his toes into the grass and the dirt. It feels good. The last place he鈥檇 been at had been more urban--but here, he鈥檚 got a whole鈥 however many acres, mostly to himself. He has to share with the farm animals, he supposes, but that鈥檚 fine.
Read the rest on AO3!
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zosonils12 minutes ago
me: nah i鈥檓 not hyperfixating on funny stickman game too hard, just enjoying a bit of a nostalgia trip in between more prominent interests
me less than one week later: so anyway here鈥檚 my au where ellie and charles are both present from the start of the series [or at least much earlier than ftc and ita respectively] i鈥檝e already mentally drafted the character arcs and story parallels and several more jokes about charles ramming his helicopter into something
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sparkleshinejoe13 minutes ago
Morndas, 18th of Last Seed 4E201
I met Lucien while I was drinking.
I had been exiled from my stronghold outside of Skyrim and was burying my woes at the bottom of a mug of cheap ale.
I had killed my father, done what had to be done to become chief but the reaction I had to his death shamed me, I had a change of heart, trying to mend his wound and sobbing. chieftain was different, he encouraged me and my pursuits, allowed me to buy odd tomes from traveling traders and spend hours reading rather than hunting.
So Malacath smite me I wept over his death, I did not beat my chest and feel proud.
So I find myself sitting in the town I rode into on the back of a wagon of a traveling trader, a shitty little graveyard town when a guy who barely looks mature comes up to me.
"I have a proposition for you." I snort into my ale and say "Friend I am drunk but not that drunk, you'd need more hair on your chest to interest me."
The Imperial (by the looks of him) hems and haws, all apologies and misunderstandings; turns out he thought me being an orc, I'd be willing to swing a mace in his honor; keep him safe.
"I'm not that kind of orc, I don't pick up steel anymore, never again."
He doesn't pry, he just sits and looks disappointed.
I sigh and ask him why he's in Skyrim anyway given the provincial opinion of his people.
"I'm here to research the province and the Dwemer presence specifically."
My eyes widen and my mind drifts back to my room in the longhouse back in the stronghold; full of tomes on Dwemer Architecture and relics I bought for septims I earned hunting with traps.
"That's...interesting." I figured I'd take a chance...this once.
"If you let me tag along and do my own research, we can be a team."
The guy grinned like I just gave him a gift.
"It's a deal!"
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the-z-part20 minutes ago
Hey so I've got a short story out! I don't super want my real name on this blog, but if we're mutuals and you want to read it, dm me! It's gay and it's about magic and public opinion <3
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mindninjax20 minutes ago
I literally cannot believe @lady-bakuhoe roped me into this Collab. Your mind is too sexy. I hate it here.
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@ketslketslketsl The things I do for love. 馃え馃槖
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mythgirlimagines22 minutes ago
Saito鈥檚 turn! I don鈥檛 think there are spoilers this time around but tread with caution just in case :)
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ardawyn22 minutes ago
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Sage and Spirit | Mini Character Intro
禄 Imraa led me through the palace with a bounce in her step. Just as her smile, her laugh, this excitement that seeped out of her, even if it was subtle, was contagious. She did not tell me where she would bring me, but I knew she had a plan, I sensed it, and I did not ask. Something in me trusted her. I shouldn't be following her. I should stay away from her, as far as I could. This path was wrong, and yet I walked it, pushed away all that had threatened to crush me these past days.聽芦
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鉂 Evara Galetha | 26 years old, oryth mage (鈥漵econd tier鈥 mage), bisexual (leaning towards women), middle child, war survivor, stepdaughter of a sovereign, artist, taught herself herb lore, troubled, resilient, adaptable, open-minded, liar
鉂 Imraa Haleesa | 23 years old, Princess of Baduraan (third in line, two older siblings), bisexual, trained in combat/sword fighting since a young age (like every royal), 鈥渞ebel princess鈥, charming, curious, selfless, tries to see the good in people
WIP Tag | Intro | Excerpts
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1990aaron22 minutes ago
Don鈥檛 cry little one
The words I heard at birth
So long I obeyed
But now I say the name
Wisdom comes when you look beyond words
So do cry
The wounds are fresh and need to mend
Little one, it鈥檚 okay
Cry to me, and I鈥檒l cry for you
Something I wrote
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writtendevastation27 minutes ago
So, I have a question for you guys. im autistic myself.
In my wip Raising Hell, theres a very new Hunter of the supernatural called Alice who is autistic and very new to the job of being a Hunter and she is naturally very nervous about the whole thing but she actively wants to help, but its clear she鈥檚 new.
My character Laura wants to confront Alice鈥檚 family about the fact she wants to be a Hunter and asks if its wise, but not because she鈥檚 autistic. I want to make it clear Laura is worried about her because she鈥檚 obviously new and she鈥檚 twenty four whilst everyone else who is a active Hunter is in the age range of 30-50+. Alice needs training and theyre approaching a war where its the Hunters vs Heaven vs Hell
If I specified that they鈥檙e worried about Alice because she鈥檚 new to the whole thing and she doesn鈥檛 really know how to fight, but made it clear that they鈥檙e not worried for her because she鈥檚 autstic, is it considered offensive?
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fromtheboundlesssea30 minutes ago
A Choice Not Mine Chapter 30
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Celia X
It was simply a quiet breakfast.
They talked a little, but both were exhausted from the night before and knew they needed to get up eventually. Celia blushed at the memories of the previous night. She remembered the way her husband had held and kissed her and she was only partially angry at herself for denying herself that pleasure for so long.
Yes, there was some regret, some memories of Jaime that came into her heart, but she knew that this was her life now. It was cruel to Jaime and herself to pretend that they could be anything else. Once she returned to the Red Keep, she would talk to Jaime about everything and things might be better for both of them.
Celia glanced at her husband and smiled, warmth emanating from her chest at the sight of him. He was exhausted too, his eyes with slight dark circles beneath them. But she looked at his hands and remembered them on her body as well as his mouth.
鈥淵ou鈥檙e staring,鈥 her husband said gently.
Celia simply smiled. 鈥淐an鈥檛 I admire my husband?鈥
鈥淚 should be the one admiring you, my lady.鈥
Celia set down her fork and knife and stood to kiss Daeron鈥檚 lips tenderly. 鈥淚 think you are much more handsome than you seem to think you are.鈥
Her husband blushed a deeper scarlet and Celia smiled, kissing him tenderly again. Daeron鈥檚 hand went to her cheek and the kiss became deeper, deeper by the second.
Continue on Ao3
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rhyspent-ffxiv31 minutes ago
Any glazier worth their salt knows that a crack in the glass is never just a crack.
It starts small, unnoticeable to the untrained eye and the unfamiliar. A pebble kicked up by a passing carriage, or perhaps a bird, whose life is cut short by the inability to comprehend. The first whisper white streak appears, in the corners or the center, seen only in the right light.
It starts small, and so it is overlooked.
On the magnificent stained glasses full of stories what is one crack, one small imperfection with cause unknowable?
But it grows, as all things do. With time and age the single line splinters, cascading outwards and outwards, slivers turning to lines and lines turning to fractals.
It grows and grows and grows until there is no denying it. Until the pictures and sights that the glass once held are warped, damaged beyond repair, and near unrecognizable.
If treated early the glass can be saved, the story prolonging.
But this requires someone to notice, to speak up.
To not overlook and assume that someone else will fix it.
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moonlitmirror33 minutes ago
You hurt me with your fragile words;
lonely is the new day's speech
and the quiet beholds a solemn time
filled with empty promises, I hear you speak
of nothing more than darkness folding
consuming all to sit and see
a new day filled with quietly spoken
words absent now
of your cruel mind and damning speech
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