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#anyone up for an aw chat tuesday
sunflowerstache · a year ago
I miss our AW babies! How is tiny coping? How’s Bella getting in at school? Xx
They’re doing well!! Tiny has a really really hard time for the first week of B being at school! not having her little footsteps around the house or hearing B talking to Peach or asking for snacks or peaking in and sitting with her during a nap or just hanging out has been a really big adjustment for her, and Harry, so they’re adjusting! so they’ve taken up old hobbies! Harry plays a lot more football with some mates, Tiny’s painting more but also took up baking so B has a cute lol treat after school! and they spend loads of time together now, lots of afternoon dates and such so they’re doing alright!
Bella however is having a great time! the first few days she had a hard time being away from her parents but once she settled in, she’s great! she already have friends - Owen happens to be in her class which she and H&T are very thankful for! She’s been a social butterfly and learning a lot and she comes home and teaches if all to her parents and Peach and her grandparents or Gemma/Michal or Niall - really anyone who’ll listen😂💛💛
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mandoalorian · 3 months ago
An AU in which Din Djarin advertises himself on Craigslist as a man who can assemble your IKEA furniture for 50 bucks.
credit for idea goes to @fleetwoodmactshirt and their post which you can read here; thank you to @clown-bae-anon for tagging me in the post!! 💓
Please please reblog!
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You wanted to cry.
Moving out of your childhood home was meant to be your way of asserting your independence and proving to your parents that you could make it on your own. But, as you sat in front of the collapsed television unit, surrounded by an abundance of miscellaneous screws, with broken and bleeding fingernails, you found yourself wondering if you had made a severe lapse of judgement.
Better yet, they were coming over for dinner today— and you knew your dad would give you a mouthful if he saw you hadn’t finished assembling your furniture already. Desperate times called for desperate measures.
Unfortunately, you were brand new to the neighbourhood and hadn’t yet made any friends. You had no one to rely on; no one to ask for a favour. You pondered for a few moments, trying to figure out where you could find a handy man willing to work such short notice. You had no other choice than to turn to Craigslist.
There were a few potential candidates. Boba Fett; but he couldn’t be there until Tuesday. Fennec Shand; but she was extremely pricey. Then, at the very bottom of the website, you noticed a small advertisement. Only a few words.
“Din Djarin: I will assemble your IKEA furniture for 50 bucks. Will take me no more than an hour. I will bring my kid. Call me.”
And underneath, he left his number. You guessed that was the catch: that he would bring his child while he worked. You didn’t mind too terribly, besides, you were out of other options. You just hoped it wouldn’t be a sticky iPad kid who was going to snoop around your stuff and make a mess.
Grabbing your phone, you dialled his number. He answered on the first few rings, but said nothing.
“Uhm, hi,” you greeted, scratching the back of your neck as you tried to figure out how to approach the handy man. You’d never hired anyone from Craigslist before. “I have this huge TV unit from IKEA and I need it assembled before 5pm today. Would you be able to—“
“Address?” he asked, giving you the first taste of his velvety voice. After giving him your address, you were about to ask him about the child, but he cut you off. “I’ll be over in ten minutes.” Then he hung up.
He was abrupt, to say the least. You stood there, phone in hand, reflecting on your short witted conversation you’d had with the handyman. Maybe he just wasn’t sociable? It was okay though, he’d be coming over to work, not chat. You just needed him to assemble the television stand before your parents came over.
And if he was true to his advertisement, he’d get it done in no time.
Din Djarin arrived on your doorstep after seven minutes, carrying his son close to his chest. When you heard your doorbell ring out, you smoothed out your outfit, fixed your hair, and checked your appearance on the mirror hanging in the entrance-way. After all, this would technically be the first person you met in your brand new neighbourhood. And first impressions mattered.
As you swung open the front door, you announced, with a beaming smile crossing your lips, “Thank you so much for com—“
You were awe-struck. He was… breathtaking. Not like the handymen back home. He stood there, blinking his chocolate brown eyes, and nursing a child who must have been no older than two years. His hair was only a few shades darker than his eyes, short and curly, and he had a light graze of stubble donning his jaw and upper lip.
You found your gaze quickly flicking to his hands, only to check for a wedding ring. You hated how that was your first instinct but you felt a hitch in your throat when you saw just how large and thick his fingers were.
Your wild thoughts were interrupted when he cleared his throat awkwardly, and you wanted to curse at yourself how long you’d been standing there, blatantly checking him out. Your grip on the door tightened as you felt a flush of heat cross your cheeks, and you offered the handyman a weak smile.
“S— am sorry, I— hi,” you extended your arm and shook his hand. “I’m new. I mean I’m Y/N. But I’m new too. I uh—“
“I’m Din,” he introduced, cutting your flustered response short. “This is Grogu.”
His child cooed slightly and you were in awe over just how big the little one’s eyes were. You smiled and closed in on the child, offering him a small wave.
“Hi baby,” you cooed back, completely enamoured with him. Now that you were more aware of how you were acting around the handyman, you turned to focus your attention more on him. “Uh, please come in. And make yourself comfortable,” you offered, opening the front door wider and ushering both the man and his son inside. “Can I get you anything? A drink?”
“No thanks.” Din replied, setting down his toolbox and then the child.
“Grogu, are you hungry?” you asked, kneeling down to the little child. He slurped and eagerly nodded his head, causing Din to roll his eyes.
“He just had soup before we left,” Din told you.
“Kids always have big appetites,” you laughed, and finally, your comment had caused Din to break a smile. Albeit it was a small one, you still adored the way the corners of his eyes crinkled with delight.
“You have kids?” Din asked curiously, briefly glancing around your living room in search for any signs of children; but he couldn’t find any toys or printed comfort blankies laying around.
Somehow, you got the idea that he didn’t get around much (other than for work, at least). You got the idea that maybe he didn’t have many friends.
“No, but uh— I come from a big family and I used to have a babysitting job when I was a teenager. Feels like I’ve been around kids my whole life,” you admitted, wondering if you’d offered the handyman a little too much personal information. You quickly made the decision to change the subject, grabbing Grogu’s tiny hand. “Come with me Grogu, let’s see what I have in the fridge.”
Grogu selected some dinosaur shaped crackers and a juice box, sipping on it merrily as he toddled back into the living room where his father was working. You silently leaned by the door frame, admiring Din as he constructed the television stand. You’d only been gone five minutes and he’d already made so much progress.
Unable to escape the feeling, you just couldn’t ignore the flurry of butterflies that were ecstatically circling around in the pit of your stomach. You couldn’t tear your gaze from the attractive handyman who was fixing up your IKEA television stand for only 50 bucks. All of this seemed too good to be true.
He could be a serial killer and you wouldn’t even know. But as you watched his bicep flex underneath his light grey sweatshirt, you considered the many ways he might kill you; and for a split second, you knew that if he decided to turn around and choke you with his strong hands, you wouldn’t be mad at all.
“You want kids one day?” he quizzed suddenly, the question causing you to jump slightly. You were so quiet, you had kind of hoped he hadn’t noticed you were just standing there, watching him work.
“Uhm, maybe. I don’t know yet,” you said, glancing down at Grogu who was just patiently sitting down on your sofa, munching at his cookies. He was so well behaved. Din must’ve been a really good dad. “Did you want kids before you had Grogu?”
You winced after asking the question, hating the way the words had left your lips. It sounded wrong; like you were asking your handyman if his son was planned or not. But thankfully, Din only laughed.
“Kind of a weird story,” He said as he tightened a screw using nothing but the strength in his left arm. “I found Grogu. Or more like, he found me.”
You pressed your lips together as you wondered what exactly that was supposed to mean.
You and Din exchanged more small talk, and you both found yourselves learning more and more menial facts about one another.
You: What’s your favourite colour?
Din: Brown. Like dirt.
You: Cats or dogs?
Din: Fish.
You: Fish?
Din: They’re nice to look at.
Despite the random quick-fire questions you both asked each other, it didn’t stop you from yearning to know more about the mysterious handyman who took his kid with him everywhere.
Din finished the job early. He always did. But he pottered around with the finished television stand simply because he just didn’t want to leave yet. He was enjoying your company so much, and you were so endearing and easy to talk to. Not to mention, you were brilliant with Grogu.
Eventually though, he stood up and dipped his hands into his jean pockets. “Uh, I’m finished. Does it look okay? I hammered the shelving unit into the wall so it looks neater. It’s more stable that way, too.”
You smiled, impressed with Din’s skillful labour. “It’s perfect,” you admired. “You’re my hero. Really.”
That tugged on Din’s heart strings. Your hero. His cheeks flushed pink and he prayed that you didn’t notice his warm blush. You reached into your purse and paid the handyman.
“Thanks again.” you said with gratitude as you saw Din and Grogu to the door. You passed Grogu some more dinosaur crackers for the journey home and he took them from you eagerly.
Din wanted to get your number so badly. In the short time you’d spent together, you had completely bewitched him, and he didn’t want this to be the last time he saw you. You had his number but… the chances that you’d call him again were slim. Unless—
“If you ever get more furniture, give me a ring,” Din offered awkwardly, shying away from the idea of asking for your number outright.
“I will Din, I promise.”
Din nodded and ran his fingers through his dark hair. “Okay. Thanks. Um— bye then.”
“I’ll see you around Din.”
See you around. The words rang in the back of Din’s mind as he drove home as he processed your open-ended goodbye. He really did hope that he’d see you again.
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chokemewanda · 4 months ago
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How different Avengers look after you while hungover
Warnings : vomit, swearing, excessive alcohol, talk of sex but nothing explicit, age gap in the Banner part, fatalist humor
“I thought I told you not to let me drink too much?” Tony groaned and you shoved your head under the pillow, trying to block his voice out along with the rest of the world. “J, turn the lights off.”
“That light would be the Sun, Sir. It does not have an off switch.” Jarvis told Tony politely and he groaned again.
“Close the blinds, fire a nuke at it, do whatever you can to stop it hurting.” Tony ordered, his hands reaching out for you across the large bed. You squirmed away from him, head pounding and stomach turning. “Make me breakfast?”
You retreated from under your pillow to glare at him, sure you looked awful. You hadn’t taken washed your face and your hair was a mess from Tony running his fingers through it last night. “You make me breakfast.”
“You’re the assistant.” He sighed and then groaned when you shoved him. Your body protested the move heavily and you paused in your mission to push him off the bed, holding a hand over your mouth. “Don’t get sick on the bed!”
“I’m not gonna-“ you paused again, swallowing roughly in an attempt not to vomit. You tumbled from the bed, sliding into the bathroom and collapsing to your knees against the cool marble and emptying your stomach into toilet. “I’m dying.”
“I assure you, you are not dying. You are just hungover.” Jarvis supplied unhelpfully. If you hadn’t been busy getting sick you would have told him to fuck off. As it was you just groaned and curled against the bowl, holding on for dear life.
A cool washcloth pressed to your neck and you looked up to find Tony with his head turned away from where you were puking. “If I look I’ll be joining you.”
“I’m okay. You can go back to bed.” You pushed yourself up off the floor and he grabbed your elbow, helping you the rest of the way up.
“Want me to call Steve and see if he’ll bring us breakfast? I’ll tell him you’re not feeling well.” Tony asked, a smirk on his lips and you laughed, leaning against him.
“He might take it away again if he knows we’ve been drinking. Captain America might frown upon that kind of thing.” You pressed your face into Tony’s neck, sighing when your headache flared with a vengeance. “He might be on to something.”
“I’ll order McDonald’s breakfast.” Tony ran a hand through your hair and you relaxed against his chest.
“It’s two in the afternoon, sir.” Jarvis spoke up again and you groaned against his neck before pulling away.
“I’m gonna brush my teeth, see if you can pull some strings and get me an Egg McMuffin.” You ushered him out of the bathroom and listened to him argue with Jarvis over breakfast times.
You took a shower while you were at it and felt marginally better when you left the bathroom. Your mood only improved when you found Tony with a huge McDonald’s breakfast spread.
“You did it!” You cheered before crawling up the bed to meet him. He only smiled when you you pulled him in, hands on either side of his face. “My hero.”
You kissed him softly, aware he hadn’t brushed his teeth yet and he chuckled against your lips. “Gonna need you to cancel my Tuesday afternoon meetings.”
You sat back, grabbing an egg McMuffin and unwrapping it. “Why?”
“I have to do a commercial.” He shuddered and you laughed loudly, forgetting both of your headaches and then flinching.
“Just so I could have breakfast?” You asked, oddly endeared.
“Anything for you.” He reminded and pulled a pancake from the pile, tearing off a piece and popping it into his mouth. “No matter how much Steve will complain about me endorsing terrible food.”
“Oh fucking shit.” You stared at you phone in disbelief, having been certain you set an alarm. Instead you had slept in. You barely paid your thumping headache a thought and barrelled from the bed, puling on your jeans from the night before. You grabbed a top, from your not-quite-dirty-not-quite-clean pile on the floor and gave it a cautionary sniff before pulling it on. You found shoes and then grabbed your bag and jacket before hurrying out the door and down the stairs.
Usually you’d walk to work but today you barely had a chance to hail a cab, stuttering over the address as the full effects of your hangover caught up to you. You searched through your purse and delighted in the fact you found a bottle of body spray and even had a pair of sunglasses to cover up your tired eyes. Today was already looking up. What you very noticeably did not have was your wallet, that contained your money and your ID to get into work.
Your phone was down to fifteen percent and you dialled the familiar number, praying that there would be an answer on the other line. The taxi cab was drawing closer to Avenger’s Tower and you clicked you tongue as the phone continued to ring with no sign of an answer. “Hello?”
“Angel, baby, my saviour and hero. Can you meet me at the entrance with money and a bypass for security?” You begged, pawing through your bag for any change you might have tossed down there. Nothing. “I’ve a meeting in ten and I forgot my money and I’m in a cab and my head hurts so bad and I might vomit and you never came home last night.”
“I arrived back at the tower less than a half hour ago. I figured you were already here and I was going to find you on your break.” Natasha laughed down the phone and you smiled and took a deep breath. “I’ll be at the entrance, have him pull right up, Oscar is on the door. I’ll warn him.”
“I love you to the moon and back again.” You swore down the phone and she laughed again.
“I love you to Jupiter and back.” She promised before hanging up.
“Where should I drop you?” The driver asked and you looked up after one final root through your bag and pushed your sunglasses on.
“Right up to the door please, I have a friend who’s waiting for me and she’s got cash because I’ve forgotten my money.” You explained in a rush.
“I’m not allowed park up front-“
“It’s okay, I’ve got it covered.” You promised and Natasha met you at the door, tossing money to the driver and giving you a hand out of the taxi. “Thank you.”
You shut the door and Natasha offered you a bottle of water and then opened her other hand to show you two pain relief tablets and you felt like dropping to your knees and worshipping her.
“I told you about drinking tequila.” She hummed and you nodded, taking the tablets and washing them down with water. She shuffled you in front of her, fixing your hair until it looked like something you’d do on purpose.
“It wasn’t my fault, people kept buying me drinks because my scary girlfriend wasn’t there to stop them.” You caught her eye in the reflective doors and she rolled her eyes at you.
“And what did you give the people who bought you drinks?” She asked idly, smoothing her hands over your shoulders and down your arms to hold your hands. You sighed happily, leaning back against her.
“Tony’s number.”
Your eyes have barely opened when there’s a glass of water being pushed into your line of vision and you laugh to yourself, taking a sip and another at Bruce’s insistence.
“You need to keep drinking water, it’ll make you feel better.” He assured you and you laughed, sitting up in the bed. You probably looked a mess but from the wipes on your left dresser at least you’d taken care to wash your face.
“I’m okay. I could actually go for a Sprite and something greasy.” You told him honestly, stretching your arms above your head.
“Are you sure? You were very drunk.” Bruce told you hesitantly and you laughed. He was sitting out of arms reach on the side of the bed so you shuffled down to him, arranging yourself on his lap, leaning against his chest.
“The joys of still being in my twenties.” You reminded him and felt his chuckle from the rumble in his chest. He kissed the top of your head and you relaxed against him. “A hangover can be easily dealt with by a drink full of sugar and burger dripping with grease.”
“Is that so?” He asked, running a hand up and down your spine. “I’m not sure if science backs that up.”
“Young adult science is different than old man science.” You told him safely, pulling away from his chest to kiss his cheek and ease the sting of your words, knowing it was something he fought himself over sometimes.
“Oh well in that case, how about I get you a McDonald’s breakfast?” He asked and you smiled happily before frowning.
“McDonald’s breakfast? What time is it?” You asked, twisting to look at the clock and finding it just before nine am. “Jesus, I think this is the earliest I’ve ever woken after drinking.”
“That might be my fault. I was trying to turn your phone off.” He told you, eyes careful again and you frowned.
“Why would you be turning it off?” You asked suspiciously, reaching for where it lay on the dresser. It was powered down and you hit the power button.
“Because I don’t think the phone calls you were getting were conducive to getting over a hangover.” He told you with a sigh.
“What did I do?” You asked slowly, watching your phone boot up and the notifications pour in.
“You wouldn’t let me delete it.” He whispered and your heart dropped, rushing to snapchat, the only app you really bothered with.
Bruce had been finding it hard to accept the age difference between you two for quite some time. You’d had to actively pursue him, promising that you were serious before he even gave you the time of day.
You couldn’t help it. You’d been working as receptionist for the lab floor for months and watching the gentle doctor come and go, always stopping for a good morning and a good evening chat had softened you up to him.
You weren’t telling anyone that didn’t need to know. The only people that needed to know was Bruce’s team at your insistence because they were too used to him being free all the time.
That and Tony had caught you both in the lab, Bruce in the act of lifting you up onto one of the tables while kissing your neck.
Your Snapchat story was a hodge podge of your night. It started with pictures of you and your friends getting ready and then of you all in some bar you couldn’t remember.
Then instead of going home you’d obviously returned to the Tower. The picture was a screenshot from who could only be Wanda or Peter. They were the only ones you had on Snapchat.
Bruce was laughing, trying to clean your face while you were attempting to kiss him.
You hadn’t captioned it, just posted it to your story. Where your family could see it. Where your friends could see it.
“I’m so sorry.” You whispered and Bruce frowned, furrowing your eyebrows.
“Why are you sorry? I should have take it down.” He told you quietly. “Now you’ll have so much explaining to do.”
“I don’t care about that.” You sighed. “This is an invasion of your privacy. You wanted to keep things quiet.”
“For your sake sweetheart.” He sighed, brushing your hair back. “I’m an old man. I don’t think your family will be happy.”
“My family will be happy because I am. Don’t worry about other people Bruce. I want to know how you feel about it all.” You dropped your phone, cupping his cheeks gently. “This is a lot and I have no doubt people have saved it and sent it on. People are gonna know about us.”
“Maybe it’s time they did.” He mumbled and you couldn’t help kiss him, lips closed because you were conscious of the fact that you hadn’t brushed your teeth yet.
“Good, guess it’s time you meet my parents. You and my dad will have a lot in common. You were both born in the same year.” You kissed his cheek before heading for the bathroom.
“You’re so lucky I love you.” He groaned and you looked over your shoulder with a grin.
“If you loved me you’d join me.” You beckoned and he jumped up from the bed.
“Oh my god.” You tried to get away from the voice, your head pounding before you realized that you should very much not be hearing a voice.
You sat up quickly, having enough thought to hold the sheet up because apparently you weren’t wearing clothes. Why the hell weren’t you wearing clothes?
Apparently you weren’t the only one because Peter Parker was currently pulling on his jeans, hopping around in search of a shirt. You stared at him before flopping back on the bed and groaning.
“I’m presuming we slept together.” You spoke carefully and Peter looked up quickly before shrugging.
“I’m uh not sure.” Peter shrugged honestly, taking a seat at the end of the bed and looking down at his hands. “I don’t remember.”
“I don’t either. So at least we’re on the same page. Except I seem to be more hungover.” You glared at him and he rolled his eyes. “Screw you and your super healing.”
“Want a drink?” Peter asked quietly and you nodded, shuffling up to lean on your elbows.
“A glass of water.” You sighed.
“Mr. Stark is approaching the room.” Jarvis warned and you shared a wide eyed glance with Peter.
“Lockdown, J.” You bolted from the bed, grabbing a shirt and a pair of shorts and pointing Peter to the en-suite.
The door handle jiggled but mercifully didn’t open as you took a glance in the mirror and checked your appearance. You sighed before unlocking the door and smiling brightly. “Hey dad.”
“Hey kiddo, you slept in.” He checked his watch and you nodded slowly. “Not really like you.”
“That’s very true. I was waiting to see how long it would take you to notice.” You told him, still nodding.
“Notice that you were hungover or that you were wearing Parker’s shirt?” Tony asked and you blanched, looking down.
A clatter from the bathroom made you wince and Tony narrowed his eyes before pushing the door opened wider.
“You know I thought the day of killing the spiders in your bathroom had passed.” He grumbled.
“This is not fair.” You grumbled as Bucky held your hair back and you emptied the contents of your stomach into the toilet bowl again. “You deserve a hangover. I should not be alone in this.”
“Doll, I’m right here. You’re not alone in this.” He reminded you and you glared at him over your shoulder before puking again.
When you finished he helped you off the floor and hoisted you onto the bathroom counter, popping your toothbrush in your mouth and beginning to wipe your face with a damp cloth. “Not fair.” You grumbled around your toothbrush.
“I haven’t had a hangover in over 70 years.” He smiled and you narrowed your eyes at him.
“Thought that was the prohibition.” You groused and he rolled his eyes, wiping the cool cloth over your forehead once more before catching a dribble of toothpaste.
“You’re trying to be smart but I was actually born before the prohibition. I was sixteen when it ended.” He told you and you glared at him before leaning over to spit in the sink and rinse your toothbrush.
“The point I was trying to make still stands. You’re old.” You told him and he laughed, nodding his head.
“I am old. Over a hundred years only and I still hold my drink better than you do. You big baby.” He teased, touching a knuckle to your chin so you’d look at him.
“You’re being mean.” You muttered petulantly and he huffed another small laugh before leaning in close and kissing your cheek.
“I’m-“ kiss on the nose. “So-“ other cheek. “Very-“ forehead. “Sorry.” He finally kissed you on the lips, slipping his metal hand behind your head and cradling your face as he deepened the kiss, pressing insistently between your spread thighs. “I read somewhere that orgasms help headaches.”
“I read somewhere that sudden movements like sex with you will make me vomit again.” You muttered against his lips, hands splayed against his chest. You shared a look before both speaking at once.
“Gentle morning sex.” He hefted you into his arms and you tangled your fingers in his hair, kissing him deeply.
It didn’t come as a surprise that Steve was a worrier. He’d been fretting over your little hang over all morning and you were growing agitated at his pestering. The others had all left the communal living room, choosing to suffer on their own if it meant not having to listen to Steve.
It was Clint’s birthday the night before and everyone had been drinking an unholy mixture of alcohol and were suffering for it today. Not half as bad as you were.
“It’s irresponsible. You know better than that. You’re not in your twenties anymore and it takes such a toll on you-“
“Stevie, baby, please know that I don’t really mean this. But a little part of me wished that I was still in my twenties so you wouldn’t be here ragging on me for having fun.” You grumbled and he paused in his speech, making you look out from under the cold cloth over your eyes to find him smiling softly at you.
Not the reaction you expected.
“You gonna wish me back in the ice because I worry about you?” He asked, teasingly. He came to kneel by the sofa, smiling still. “Turn me back into an icicle because I hate seeing you sick and not being able to fix it?”
“Yes.” You grumble and he laughed again, pressing a gentle kiss to your forehead. “But not for long.”
“Only a little frosted?” He asked and you nodded, pursing your lips for a kiss which he gave you.
“Just your finger tips and toes.” You promise, curling your hand around his neck and pulling him in for another gentle kiss, elevating the kiss by nipping on his bottom lip. “I’ll warm you back up.”
“Is that a promise?” Steve asked, shifting his weight so he could kiss you better, stealing your breath. “How do you plan to warm me up?”
“I have ways to do it.” You promise, tugging on his short hair. “I’m very talented.”
“You proved as much last night. I’ve never seen anyone take so many consecutive tequila shots. Bucky took less and he can’t get drunk.” Steve muttered against your lips.
“Talented.” You repeated and kissed him again. He ran his fingers over your face and you hummed to yourself. “Feeling a little cold.”
“Guess you better warm me up.” He grinned.
You woke up in a sweaty heap of limbs and groaned low in your throat as your headache began to thrum like Steve had thrown his shield at your head again ‘accidentally’.
“If you kill me, I’ll kill you.” Wanda promised, pressing back against your chest and pulling your arms tighter around her stomach.
“Suicide pact.” You muttered into her neck and she laughed before groaning loudly again. “Close the blinds, Jarvis.”
The room fell into darkness again and you both sighed in relief. Wanda shuffled around, coming face to face with you and pressed her face into your neck. “Last night was fun.” She whispered.
Last night had been fun. An old friend had begged for you to come to her engagement party, pulling every trick in the book and every guilt trip she could think of to convince you to come out but you had been reluctant, not wanting to spend all night with a bunch of people you barely saw anymore.
It wasn’t until your friend suggested that maybe it was better you didn’t come because everyone would be coupled up and you would feel left out. She hadn’t known about Wanda. And damn it but you wanted a chance to show her off.
You and Wanda spent all your time at the Tower with her team and she had been ecstatic at the chance to meet some of your old friends.
The party had been a disaster of people bragging about their jobs and their spouses and their kids. None of which either of you wanted to participate in. So you’d started a drinking game.
You’d both been fairly drunk when your friend had walked in on you both in the bathroom, Wanda’s hands in your hair and yours inching her dress up her thighs. With a flick of Wanda’s hand the door shut and locked, leaving you both with privacy.
You knew your friend had told anyone who would listen outside the party that she caught you two at it in the toilet but you hadn’t cared. Wanda was hot and you were damn proud to be the one she chose to trust.
So you’d both taken more shots and then stumbled into a taxi in the early hours of the morning back to the Tower.
You were a bit blurry on the details of getting out of the cab and all the way to bed but you were full sure you’d woken many people because of the giggling.
“We should do it again some time.” You told her, running your hand up her side, smiling when she flinched away, laughing from the ticklish spots. “Have some fun in every bar in New York.”
“That could take a while.” She told you, playing with your hair gently. “How many bars are there in New York, Jarvis?”
“According to there are 25,000 nightlife establishments in New York.” Jarvis told her and she smiled against your neck.
“Do the maths for me, J.” Your brain was much too tired to even attempt it.
“The most feasible way to deal with this would be to visit three bars a night for the next twenty two years.” Jarvis told them. “Alternatively, you could go to one bar a night for sixty eight years.”
“Sounds good to me. What do you think, baby?” You asked and Wanda hitched her leg over your hip, using the momentum to roll you onto your back with her thighs either side of your hips.
“Sounds good to me.” She whispered and leaned down to kiss you, pausing when she met your hand.
“As hot as that was, the quick movement is gonna make me sick.”
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writingsoftheloser · 5 months ago
A Change of Heart | Part 1
Nothing Less than a Dance on Tuesday
Summary: He’s rich, arrogant and vain and you have no intention of letting your pride go. You’ll soon find your lives entwined and discover that perhaps, perspective has more weight than you could ever think.
Pairing: Bucky x reader
Warnings: just some language maybe, and a sprinkle of angst
A/N: hello my friends, since the cat is out of the bag and at birthdays we give gifts, you get this! I’m just gonna wait impatiently to hear from you all because I’m actually even more nervous about this part than the prologue! so, enjoy and come talk with me please!
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The evening sky, slowly darkening, was clear of clouds. Crickets were chirping, announcing the upcoming nightfall and the Y/l/n’s old carriage was bringing the whole family to Coulson’s house.
You felt slightly uncomfortable in your dress - even if it was probably the least elaborate between all your sisters' ones. You kept fidgeting, pulling on your sleeves and attracting the attention of Margaret. “Y/n are you ok?”
Her eyes were concerned as she observed you closely.
“Yes, yes of course" you whispered, trying to not draw anymore attention to yourself, especially that of your mother.
“Then stop squirming”
“Peg, this dress is itchy,” you whispered urgently.
Peggy rolled her eyes. “C’mon, we're almost there and then we can flee.” You two had in fact already planned on ditching the rest of the family and enjoying the evening on your own - but obviously no one had to know. “Do you think there will be a lot of officials?”
“I don't know, Peg. But if there are, I’m sure all the attention will be on you" you smirked. You never lost any occasion to give her words of encouragement - in this case about her beauty but it was always over a range of qualities. You did this with all of your sisters, whenever you could; it gave you joy to see them happy.
Peggy giggled, waving you away with a hand and shrugging. “I hope so"
You softly laughed with her, covering your mouth with a discreet hand.
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Mr. Coulson’s house was big, bigger than yours, and was surrounded by a beautiful park. There were already a lot of people dressed to the nines mingling and dancing. Your favourite places might have been fields and woods but even you had to succumb to the idea that this too held a different kind of beauty: laughter and music flew from the open doors and windows, while the soft glow of the lights brought a warm atmosphere all around. It sort of made you feel strangely good.
“Let's go” Peggy whispered softly in your ear, tugging at your sleeve. You smiled at her and grabbed her arm, while dragging Wanda with the other and entering the big house together.
You would soon realise that the inside was even more magnificent than the outside. It was nothing like the mansions of the most rich but it was well furnished and elegant. Maybe, you reasoned, everything had been revived as the event held more weight this year because of the attendance, but still, you were in awe. Your gaze swept all over the room, examining every single detail, from floor to ceiling, while your sister's one was fixed on the people.
“Look, Y/n, there are a lot of officials,” Peggy smirked.
You refocused your attention on her, nodding and smiling too. You knew she was looking for a husband: she was the oldest and she still had to find someone right for her; she was looking for love, more than a convenient union, but she was also starting to feel the pressure of society's expectations.
Your mother, on the other hand, had always wanted you all to find someone who could provide for you. A good match was everything. That's why in just a short few minutes she was already dispersed in the crowd, looking for an occasion.
You soon lost Wanda to a group dance while you and Peggy started to wander around. It didn't take long for a very good looking man to ask Peggy to dance with him. She looked at you for approval, which you promptly gave. Peggy’s happiness was everything to you.
Now left alone, you started to wander on your own. You knew it was unlikely that someone would ask you to dance immediately; it had never happened before, at least. You also certainly weren't wearing a flashy dress, nothing that would catch the eye. Maybe you'll join a group dance after a sweep of the floor. Nonetheless, you were happy with how things were, because, in a certain limited way, you could do whatever you wanted. You had always valued your freedom of thought and expression, thankfully endorsed by your own father - to the displeasure of your mother.
You were nursing a glass of wine, which you had snatched from a server, when the big doors opened. A man announced the newcomers and a group of three people entered the ballroom. The first one was a tall, blond man. His eyes were a warm, sparkling blue and he was smiling at everyone, carrying himself with great elegance. At his arm there was a blond woman. She looked serious and kept her head high. The third and last man was the most interesting one: he was tall, with long brown hair tied neatly in a low bun. His icy eyes looked dull, like he didn't want to be there. He looked annoyed. He was dressed in all dark colours while his two ‘friends’ were wearing light colours like light blue, pink and cream. He was creating a nice contrast between them.
“So they're finally here” Wanda suddenly appeared next to you. She tended to do that, it was almost scary at times.
“Who are they?” you asked, not letting your eyes stray from the newcomers.
Wanda looked at you curiously. “Didn't you hear? That's Mr. Rogers. They say he is a true gentleman and has a great income. He is still unmarried and I bet he's going to be a great husband” she giggled.
You hummed. “And how do you know this?”
“I heard mom speaking.” You rolled your eyes, smiling with her. You should have known: those words were all your mom’s. “And who are the other two?”
“Well, the woman is Miss Sarah Rogers, Mr. Rogers’ sister. She is named after their mother who died in childbirth; they say she is nice but she has - you know - certain standards with friendships.” She waved her hands in a gesture and you wondered how many things did your mom actually know.
“And the man?”
“Oh, he is Mr. Barnes, dear friend of Mr. Rogers. He is said to be even richer than Mr. Rogers but he doesn't really like chatting. He seems a little bit on the brooding type - they say he is too prideful and now that I see him I have to agree.” She made a face while you just frowned. Yes, this man looked exactly like his description but he intrigued you.
“Good evening anyone!” Mr. Rogers was suddenly standing at the center of the room with a big smile on his face. Does he always have a smile or is it just the moment? “I’m happy to be here and I'm thankful for your kind welcoming! But please, let's keep dancing!” And with that the party continued.
Deciding to ignore the newcomers, you started roaming the rooms again. It was while you were walking next to a wall that you felt the icy stare on your back. Turning completely, you locked eyes with Mr. Barnes. He noticed your attention and averted his gaze, never looking back. You shrugged, ignoring the fact. You saw Peggy dancing with Mr. Rogers and when she then ran to you, dragging you in a group dance, you laughed and followed her.
It was when you noticed the insistent stare on yourself again that you decided to finally approach Mr. Barnes.
You gathered your courage and slowly walked up to him till you stood right at his side.
“Good evening, sir. Are you enjoying the party?” Mr. Barnes seemed a bit spooked but immediately masked his feelings well, sparing only a glance at you standing next to him. You were beaming and radiant, and he didn't know if it was the soft light of the room or the fact that you had been dancing. He averted his eyes as soon as they met your features, causing you to frown slightly.
“It’s quite boring,” he said, flatly.
“Well, sir, would you like to dance?”
“I don't dance. Please, have a good evening" and with that he scurried away, not sparing you another glance.
“Eh, trying is the key to success” you muttered to yourself, frowning at the retreating back of Mr. Barnes.
“What are you frowning at, sister?” Peggy’s voice reached your ears and you turned, finding her with a big smile on her face. “Oh, nothing Peg"
Peggy nodded. “What do you think of Mr. Rogers?”
“Uh, he seems nice? I really don't know him…but I heard he's a good catch”
“Well, we danced a lot so I’m going to take something to drink...want something?”
“No, thank you.” She skipped away and you turned, heading for a side door. That Mr. Barnes was quite rude and you felt a little stupid for even having tried to speak with the man. You walked around for a while, not thinking where you were going. You reached a small, enclosed garden when you heard voices coming from a patio.
“So, Bucky, are you enjoying the evening?”
“An actual waste of time, Steve"
You spied from the shadows and those were definitely Mr. Barnes and Mr. Rogers.
“C’mon, the girls are pleasant! The one I was dancing with was really pretty, her name’s Margaret"
A sigh. “Well, I don't care about your girl, Steve"
Steve scoffed. “Then let's talk about you. I saw you speaking with that girl in the blue dress"
Is he speaking about you? You were the only one Mr. Barnes spoke with, except for Mr. and Miss Rogers.
A beat of silence. It seemed like Bucky hesitated in answering. “The one that approached me?”
“Yeah, that one! I think she's a beautiful girl and a great dancer! She's Margaret’s sister!”
You felt a surge of pride hearing Mr. Rogers’ words.
Mr. Barnes laughed. “Hardly.” There was a pause before he continued, “She's definitely not as good at dancing as you think and as regards beauty, well, she's hardly average"
You clenched your fists. How could he insult you like this? He didn't even know you! Feeling tears prickling at the corners of your eyes, you scurried away in the direction you had come. You hated that man.
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“Where have you been?” Wanda inquired when you finally reappeared.
“Nowhere" you answered curtly.
“Hey, what happened?” Nakia, who was next to Wanda, asked. Her eyes and tone concerned.
“Nothing, I told you.” You didn't want to talk about what you heard, firstly because it was a bad thing eavesdropping and secondly because your pride was definitely hurt by Mr. Barnes’ words. You hated it with all yourself: who did he believe he was?
Suddenly Peggy and Jane appeared. "Girls, mom wants us to say goodbye to the Rogers’ family before going home. We should go"
You really didn't want to speak another word with those people but you let yourself be dragged away, for the sake of your whole family.
“Mr. Rogers, it's been an honour to meet you." You could hear your mother already speaking and laying up the charm.
“The honour was all ours, Mrs. Y/l/n." He then proceeded to say goodbye to your sisters, paying special attention to Peggy.
“And miss,” he turned to you,“we haven't had the pleasure to meet or dance but I really hope we'll see each other again"
Miss Rogers eyes were on you, she was smiling kindly but it definitely looked fake. Mr. Barnes, on the other hand, was still a stoic mask. It was impossible to read him. “Oh yes, Mr. Rogers, I hope that too, even though I heard I’m not so good at dancing”
Mr. Rogers laughed, as if only to disperse the suddenly tense air. “I think you manage pretty well, actually” he joked.
“I suppose it's because at least I try instead of hiding in a corner” you said looking directly at Mr. Barnes. “Now, if you'll excuse me.” Curtseying, you turned to leave with a satisfied smile on your face.
You definitely felt better.
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Part 2: It Started with a Sprained Ankle
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get-shiggy-with-it · 4 months ago
Book Drop Boy (Twice x Reader)
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✧ pairing: library student worker!Twice x afab!student!Reader
✧ word count: 9.9k
✧ ao3 mirror
✧ warnings: college au/no quirks, maladaptive daydreaming (twice), twice is chaotic af, commits library related crimes, use of the term sweetheart a few times, smut, vaginal fingering/sex, doggy style, afab terms, no pronouns for reader, gratuitous swearing this is potentially the softest thing I've ever written, like she's pretty tame idk what Twice does to me
✧ summary: In which Twice learns that sometimes dreams do come true, except those dreams are just the maladaptive fantasies of a broke library receptionist and, while sexy, also involve more fraud than he expected.
✧ a/n: Hey y'all, this is set in the same universe as my shiggy college piece, but you don't need to have read that. There are some fun little easter eggs though if you have tho. This is like the most tame thing I've ever written and it's way longer than it was meant to be but oh well. Anyway, Twice deserves some love. Enjoy <3
Logically, Jin was aware you probably had no idea who the fuck he was.
But that really didn’t have any effect on the wildly intricate fantasy life he had created for the two of you during his long shifts behind the library reception desk. That, in fact, was the only reason he hadn’t up and quit just to save himself the embarrassment of another loud outburst in the middle of the most silent place on campus.
What was truly more shocking was the fact that none of those said outburst had gotten his ass kicked straight out the door.
But he held out.
If only for you.
Late nights or lazy afternoons you were always in the campus library—studying he assumed or…
'Studying,' because a lot of the time he noticed you’d show up with a drink from the cafe a few blocks down, set out a line of colored pens and not touch a single one of them for hours, content to stare blankly at the chipped desktop. And even that Jin was more than happy to watch.
He did a lot of watching.
Mostly because he wasn’t permitted to leave the desk unattended unless there were piling up returned books which needed to be replaced quickly.
So instead, he pretended to be busy scrolling through something on his old as hell monitor—which was conveniently set up directly across from the comfy chair/desk combo you always managed to grab—and he indulged in day dreams where you’d bring him a coffee from the cafe when you came in and set it on his desk, maybe kiss him on the cheek, maybe loiter by his workstation and play with his hair and—
It was a lot.
But you were always in that chair, always working or pretending to work and you never seemed to notice the uninterrupted hours of staring Jin did, so what was the harm?
If you never knew, you’d never get creeped out—cause it was creepy, he knew that, oh fuckin' boy did he know it was real goddamn weird.
He just couldn’t seem to give it up. Especially when the conditions presented perfectly for some good uninterrupted, totally not stalker-y at all, fantasizing.
Sometimes he thought you might have some mundane superpower that let you always snatch that perfect seat right across from his computer, and made it so the library was just cool enough that he’d get to watch you shrug on that cute extra sweatshirt you always brought. So he could catch a glimpse of some skin—in a totally normal and not invasive way—when your arms went over your head. So he could imagine it was his ratty old sweaters you were wearing just so you could smell him on you and god he really wanted to get close enough to smell you—was that too weird? No. Yes? No.
Not at all.
But the best part, the part that really convinced him on those awful days when he really just could not be bothered to drag himself out of bed and walk the couple blocks to campus just to sit in awful silence alone, in his head alone with the fucking thoughts that made him want to rip his hair out—
What made it worth it was those times every few weeks when your classes would get new assigned readings. Because then you’d have to check out new textbooks, since you were one of those geniuses that had figured out the library kept a ton of those books in stock. Of course you were, cause you were fucking perfect.
And when you had to check out new books, you had to come to reception.
Jin got to watch as your lovely figure moved through the stacks like you were ballroom dancing along the halls of faded, sea-green shelves, almost floating over the linoleum trying to find just the right volume in the right addition before anyone else beat you to it.
It was one of the most gorgeous things he’d ever seen.
Spinner would call him a fucking simp if he ever dared to uttered any of that out loud, but it didn’t matter.
If it was you, he’d simp for fucking life.
And then, you’d walk that fucking glorious ass over to his desk and plop the books down, smiling—cause you were polite like that, so fucking perfect he couldn’t hardly believe it sometimes—and asking how his day was while he checked you out in every sense of the phrase.
In a completely platonic and not freaky way.
So Jin kept coming to work, to that god awful job he really hated and which hated him just as vehemently. He clocked in every day and waited patiently like a fucking puppy counting the hours till its workaholic owner arrived home, ears perking up when you walked through the door and flashed your ID to the attendant.
If only for that.
He’d put up with his boss’ complaints and the weird stares he got when the thoughts just wouldn’t stay in his head anymore and he had to start talking to himself to fill the silence.
If only for that.
Those few hours when he could lose himself in the fake inner life where you were waiting for him when his shift let out, waiting to gather him, tired and understimulated, into your arms. Where you’d sneak into the back room with him just to chat and lace your fingers with his and maybe sit that fucking wonderful ass up on the tables so he could stand in between your thighs and you’d pull him down to—
That was enough.
It wasn’t until Tuesday when he had to come in again that week, and he already knew it was gonna suck balls.
Friday he’d gotten another round of complaints from some stuck up fucking business students—it was always the fucking business majors with those silver spoons so far up their asses—snitching to his boss that he’s been ‘disruptive’ and ‘disturbing’ during his last shift.
“Not my fucking fault,” he muttered under his breath, kicking a rock along the side walk he’d picked up two blocks before. “Yes it is. No it’s not!”
Jin groaned and tugged at his hair, wishing he’d brought a Tylenol or something to curb the headache that was already sticking it’s ugly ass claws into his temples. He really, really heavily contemplated just ditching, calling in sick or some shit. Technically he was a student worker, so they had to work with his DRS accommodation and he was actually having a bad fucking time.
But one of his friends had already texted to ask if he’d try and reserve them that sweet ass study room on the third floor and Jin wasn’t really looking to disappoint anyone else this week. Besides, it was fun to abuse his minuscule power. Fun to go corrupt for once. Fight the system and all that.
He liked to think you’d be proud of him for it, based on the kinds of texts you checked out at least.
So, he dragged his sad ass back to the looming library looking far too much like a prison than was necessary and clocked in. Actually, the first thing he did was check the chair—your chair and nobody else’s chair, he might actually make a fucking scene if somebody ever did steal it—and his face visibly fell when you were not occupying it.
It was a bit early, Jin supposed as he paused briefly when he noticed the can of Monster and rando vending machine chips sitting next to it by the reception computer. The sticky note slapped to the top read 'For your troubles' in familiar handwriting and that pulled a bit of a smile from him as he quickly rearranged the scheduling of study room sign ups so the fancy third floor room would be free for the rest of the night.
Then Jin sat, staring at the study room schedules for a moment, feeling his eyes softly glaze over until a hand slapped down on the raised lip of the reception desk.
“Hey bro,” Spinner greeted him with a wild smile and a flurry of bright pink hair.
Jin had to blink a few extra times to get his vision to clear. When it did he saw, horrifyingly, that he’d been staring at the fucking blank screen for two hours without moving.
Why was it that his head was either deadly quiet, devoid of even a single errant thought or so loud as fucking shit at all times that he couldn’t physically keep the thoughts in?
“Hey, dude, what’s up?” Jin asked, running a hand through his unruly hair.
“Aren’t you supposed to like shush me or something?”
Spinner chuckled a bit at his own god awful joke and Jin couldn’t find it in himself to be annoyed, too glad for the company.
“I mean,” he shrugged, popping the can of Monster and ignoring the dirty looks he got for the sound. “I would if I was, uh, good at my job.”
“Which I’ve heard you definitely are not,” Spinner wrapped his fingers over the lip of the desk and leaned back on his heels, swaying side to side idly.
“You’re just figuring that out now?”
Jin didn’t bother watching while Spinner nearly tripped over himself fidgeting as he spun to stand at the little gate that corralled Jin inside like livestock. He was too busy glancing over to check you hadn’t slipped in while his brain had taken a trip to the astral plane without him.
“No, I been knew, but my sources tell me you’ve gone off the rails my friend,” long legs stepped over the wooden partition until the only friend he had who was quite possibly more annoying than Jin himself was sat on the counter next to his computer. “Finally been radicalized have you?”
Jin huffed and sipped his Monster, “Guess it fuckin’ took me long enough.”
“Yeah, no kidding,” Spinner was messing about with the stacks of multicolored sticky notes littered across the desk before glancing up to wink at Jin. “So what can I get you to do for me in exchange for free food?”
“Now I really am gonna fucking shush you,” Jin smashed his finger against Spinners grin only to get a hand covered in spit for his trouble.
“Right, right,” Spinner held his hands up in defeat, “can’t have you cheating on your sweetheart.”
“Not my—yes I’m in a committed fictional relationship thank you very much—ugh!”
Jin could feel the heads shooting up from laptop screens and textbooks to stick daggers in his back with their angry stares. Spinner at least had the good sense to look a little fucking guilty for egging him on.
“Sorry bro, I had to shoot my shot ya know?” a hand disappeared into the mop of bubblegum locks in apology.
“It’s fine…” Jin trailed off, mumbling and blushing more than a little profusely as he turned to check the book drop box. “Not like I’m ever gonna fuckin’ shoot mine anyway.”
“Oh we are not gonna have that kinda of shit discussion,” Spinner’s hand shot out and grabbed him firmly by the shoulders, spinning Jin in his chair. “On god bro, we’re gonna get you a date one of these days.”
Jin didn’t dignify that kind of lie with a response.
Spinner once again, had the good sense to not push the envelope any farther.
“And in the meantime, you can come to the League meeting tonight!”
“Your gaming club thing?”
“Yeah, it’s Smash night and we need to fill a space sooooo…”
Jin knew Spinner and his roommate—the same friend who he’d gone study room rogue for—had started a gaming club their freshman year. Spinner had been trying to strong arm him into attending ever since. To, as he put it, ‘socialize,’ and ‘make new friends.’ All things which Jin was patently horrible at and avoided like the plague.
Needless to say, he’d refused every time.
It wasn’t just the whole being alone with like two people he kinda knew in a room full of strangers. Games themselves were just a lot for him. The flashing colors and the loud noises made his head—which was already so fucking full all the time and he really needed to keep any extra scrap of space for extra random facts he picked up about you and your future married life together—get a bit misaligned.
They just weren’t his jam most of the time.
“I’m good, thanks for the offer though,” Jin twisted out of Spinner’s grasp and craned his head to check your seat again.
Still empty.
He sighed.
Spinner continued to ramble and Jin continued to only half listen. It wasn’t as pleasant to day dream when you weren’t there for the added visual aesthetic. And he was trying to not be a dick and ignore the one friend he had managed to keep around over the years. But it was hard when his mind had a mind of its own.
The voice—deep and dark in such a dramatically ominous way it might have been funny if it didn’t belong to his permanently disgruntled supervisor—interrupted his already derailing train of thought.
“Oh, uh, hello sir,” Jin stuttered, turning to find Kurogiri leaning against the reception desk with one arm, turning only slightly to accommodate Spinner’s form bolting over the gate and out the library doors.
He did manage to throw a fading, “See ya later, bro” over his shoulder before he disappeared around the corner.
Yeah thanks for the warning, bro.
“Aren’t you supposed to be reshelving the books from the drop box?” Kurogiri sighed, perpetually disappointed in a way that had Jin’s face burning and shame bubbling up in his throat.
He hated this job. He was objectively terrible at it, and so usually he wouldn’t give that much of a shit at not doing it well. Kurogiri just had some type of vibe—like daddy but not in the sexy way Spinner always joked about—that made it really, really upsetting to let him down.
Father figure? Yeah that's what it was called.
“Right, yeah um, sorry,” Jin nodded quickly and leapt from his chair, only mildly bruising his knee on the desk as he reached to empty the book drop.
Another incorporeal sigh was the only acknowledgement he received as he loaded the cart with wheels louder than Jin on a particularly bad day and rolled the pile of books back to the stacks. He paused once more, just before the sea green shelving units swallowed him up, to sneak another futile peak at your chair. But it still sat empty—empty and lonely with no you and cold without your body pressed against the worn upholstery.
Jin felt a chill too, a slow tingling thing that worked its way up from the base of his spine. It drove him deeper into the walls of books, away from the empty spaces.
It was harder to look.
Harder to be reminded of what he did not have.
Of what he’d never have cause he was too much of a goddamn pussy to ever just fucking talk to you—
But then what if he did? What if he did talk to you? What would happen then?
Those were the types of questions he tried to avoid when crafting your intricate, fictional lives together. Precisely because they were the easiest to answer.
You’d realize within the first five minutes or so of conversation—if Jin could even make it that far without embarrassing himself—that he was just a generic brand weirdo that all your pretty, normal, aesthetically pleasing friends would warn you to stay away from and because you were also pretty and normal and not a fucking idiot, you’d have the common sense to listen.
He’d lose you in the blink of an eye.
Your chair would sit cold and empty forever and the imaginary garden he’d been planting for you to come imaginarily home too would wilt and die like all the other happy thoughts in his head.
It was quite the conundrum and one Jin was not keen to solve soon.
Not that things ever really went his way. Cause problems could only be avoided for so long before all that time spent ignoring them came back to bite him full on the ass.
Which, apparently, came this time in the form of what had to be quiet, muffled sobbing drifting in between the shelves from the back hallway.
It was dark here in this section of the building—free of most windows so as not to cause any sunning damage to the books—and Jin had seen more than enough horror movies to know that it was a horrendous idea to follow the ominous crying sounds coming from the bowls of this old as fuck building. But even as he made up his mind to ignore it, the hand currently working one of the returns back into its proper place dropped the book to his cart as his feet slowly turned to face the corridor.
He looked around skeptically for a second, not entirely certain his poor brain hadn’t simply malfunctioned again, as it was wont to do, and fabricated the sound entirely. But as he peaked out from between the stacks, and down the dimly lit hall, he heard it again.
Echoey and soft in the wide, empty space it—was definitely coming from the hall and it was definitely a person.
Jin caught himself moving without ever meaning too, the books laying forgotten as he crept towards the source of the noise and paused just before leaving the stacks entirely. This hall was full of small alcoves built into the centuries old walls and led to the lesser used storage portions of the library that only the janitorial staff and the university librarians ever entered. He really didn’t want to stumble across someone from the special collections department bawling over a damaged or lost manuscript.
But his wayward feet pushed him forward, too sympathetic for his own good. He found himself shuffling down the abandoned hall, peering into each small dip in the walls to find the source of his distraction.
And when he did, Jin was—for once in his life—thankful for his lack of self-preservation instincts.
And cursed his blatant lack in interpersonal skills.
Because it was you.
You curled with your knees to your chest and your head in your hands, shoulders shaking, as you cried into your palms.
The universe had handed him maybe the only golden opportunity he would ever get on right on a platter.
But Jin didn’t have a fucking clue what do with it.
And there certainly wasn’t much time to formulate a game plan as his nervous breathing and sudden intake of breath upon discovering his imaginary lover sniffling right in front of him, had certainly alerted you to his presence.
Your head shot up in an instant, knocking dully against the stone wall with a thud.
“Shit,” you cursed and hands flying up to cover the area as Jin jumped on the spot at your outburst.
“Are you okay?” he asked lamely as you glanced over at him, eyes red and wet and so fucking sad oh fucking god, widening as you realized you’d been caught.
“Huh? Ye—oh uh, yes,” your words came out jumbled, legs unfolding quickly to push yourself off the bench and hands wiping furiously at your eyes. “I’m fine, sorry.”
“You sure about that?”
Jin cringed visibly and frowned at the way you deflated under his stare. God the first fucking time he actually talks to you and he already made an ass of himself.
Spinner’s roommate was such a liar, it really fucking sucked to be right sometimes.
“I mean,” you crumpled back down onto the ledge and Jin took a careful step closer, “no, but yes. Like I’m definitely having a breakdown in the back of the fucking library but I don’t wanna, uh, bother you with that. So, yeah I’m good.”
“You can bother me,” he replied way too fucking quickly.
But he couldn’t really be embarrassed about it. Your voice was just so captivating, and you weren’t talking to him in that raised pitch anymore like you usually did—the way everyone does when they’re trying to be surface level and polite. No this was your voice how you sounded when you were relaxing with your friends or making breakfast in the morning or talking to yourself in the shower (he liked to think you did that, or sang maybe as you worked the soap into your skin, one of the two but he always imagined you filled silences with how fucking pretty you were).
“No, really. That would be weird, right?”
Jin grimaced as you fixed him with a watery yet suspicious stare.
Yeah it was weird.
Everything he did concerning you was weird, objectively. He was definitely being over-familiar and too eager, especially considering you didn’t fucking know him.
But he knew you.
Jin felt like he’d known you for all months he’d spent pretending to be by your side.
And you were crying and he had to do something.
“I mean, yeah I guess,” he mumbled, taking a risk and plopped down on the opposite end of the alcove and resting his head on the wall. “But not any weirder than having a breakdown in the employees only section of the library building on a Tuesday.”
You kept staring blankly for a few moments before the most miraculous thing happened.
Jin had to physically stop his jaw from hitting the floor when the quiet giggle bubbled up from your chest and spilled out into the hall, warm enough to melt even the freezing linoleum floor.
“Yeah, you’ve got a point,” your voice cracked a bit as a few more tears slid like pearls down your cheeks.
“My name’s Jin,” he said, shocked stupid both by your laugh and the apparent success of his comforting methods.
“Oh, hi, well I guess I don’t have to call you book drop boy anymore,” you rubbed at your face again and tucked your legs back into your chest, though it looked a bit more relaxed this time.
Not so trying-desperately-to-fade-out-of-existence.
“You called me that?” Jin asked, brain still functioning at half capacity, only shocked at the fact that he existed as a concept in your head enough to have a name and realizing a bit too late how accusatory he must have sounded. “Shit, I mean it’s totally fine I just didn’t think you, uh, well I mean, like, knew about me I guess?”
You finally smiled and his brain power cut out another fourth at being personally graced by the expression this close up.
“Yeah, you always check me out—fuck sorry not that you check me out, just you scan my books and I just called you ‘book drop boy’ in my head cause I never got a chance to ask for your name but I have it now so that’s cool….”
Your head dropped back down to your knees as you groaned and Jin suddenly felt a lot less nervous than he had a few seconds ago.
You were weird too.
For so long you’d existed on this pedestal thousands of feet in the air, and now you were stepping down from the heavens and onto earth. Not in a bad way! Just, Jin had never really stopped to think that you might be a person too.
No, he knew you were a person, just he never thought you might get flustered and ramble and be nervous in front of him.
Cause he was a fucking train wreck—the bar was so goddamn low.
It was almost as comforting as your smile.
“Oh, yeah sorry I’m not the best at customer service if you couldn’t tell,” he sighed and ran a hand through his wild hair.
You looked back up with a wry grin, “I don’t know, I’d say you’re going above and beyond right now.”
And you were funny.
He was gonna fucking combust.
“Ha, yeah, I try,” he trailed off for a moment before glancing back at your curled in your corner, fuck he could just imagine sitting behind you, your head on his chest while you—”So uh, did you wanna talk about it or…?”
“Uh, yeah,” you picked idly at the grouting of the stone and mumbled, “I guess it’s not so weird if we’re on a first-name basis.
And that was how Jin discovered that you’d been hiding in the back of the library bawling your eyes out for hours—since even before his shift started. Apparently you’d gotten here extra early, even skipped a class, to snag some super specific required text for your final thesis and right before you got to the shelf some jackass swooped in, effectively hit and running with the only copy of that book on campus.
The book in questions was one of the newer additions that had special added footnotes you needed for your paper and was a whopping 500 fucking dollars to rent from every other place online. You couldn’t afford it, and honestly what fucking student could? But you needed it to complete the paper or you’d fail and Jin very much understood the need for a good breakdown after a catastrophe like that.
“Damn, that’s uh, fucking awful,” he frowned on your behalf as your head hit the wall a second time in frustration.
“Yeah so, I’m like royally fucked either way. Now I just gotta decide which hole I’m taking it in I guess,” you groaned.
Jin’s eyebrows raised at your choice of words but they were apt, he supposed. People really do get comfortable with each other pretty quick when bonding over shared institutional rage.
“Well,” he began, wringing his hands nervously at what he was about to suggest. “You might be in luck cause I’ve recently decided to abuse my library powers for good and I maybe, possibly, could try and see if there’s some strings I can pull?”
You perked up a bit, looking at him incredulously.
Jin felt comfortably full under your stare.
The word was soft and it bounced off the walls just as much as it did the inside of his skull.
Swapping study rooms to help a friend out was one thing. But falsifying checkout dates for someone he barely knew—had essentially married in his maladaptive fantasies—could get him fired.
He hated this job but he needed it.
Were you worth the risk?
Of course, he found himself thinking without hesitation.
You were everything.
“Yeah, sure,” he nodded, any lingering uncertainty washing away at the way you looked at him through your lashes. “I wouldn’t have offered if I didn’t mean it.”
“Are you always this nice?”
Jin didn’t answer right away. He was too caught up in how you’d leaned forward on your hands across the bench, peering like he was some exotic animal or a stray cat in the parking lot—all soft wonderment with fingers curling like they ached to grab hold and rescue him from this parchment scented monotony.
“Not always…”
“Should I feel special then?”
If his face wasn’t red before, it was now. Red and blistering under the summer campfire heat that radiated off you—woodsy and warm and so painfully familiar like an old friend’s hand.
“...I guess you—fucking definitely, ” he quite nearly shouted the last bit, startled by his own volume and already mortified at the outburst but then you chuckled again from beside him.
He turned to see you standing and offering a hand which he gladly too if only to feel the weight of your palm against his.
“Well, you’ll have to let me pay you back then.”
“Oh, no you don’t actually—”
You held a hand up and the words turned to ash on his tongue in an instant, mouth glued shut by your gesture.
“Coffee on me or something, there’s a nice cafe a few blocks from here,” you dropped your hand and your eyes were clear now, no sign of the previous afternoon sobbing alone in the hallway. Jin felt a surge in his chest knowing he was the one who did that. “You gotta pass off the contraband anyway, and I don’t think it would be that great of an idea to do it here.”
God you were fucking perfect.
“Can’t argue with that.”
Jin was sweating profusely as he snuck past the library attendant, totally inconspicuous and not not all looking like he was doing a single thing wrong in the slightest.
Yeah they definitely didn’t suspect a thing.
The process of fraud was actually a lot less complicated of an undertaking that Jin had expected. All he had to do was search up the book, find the student that had stolen the success of his sweetheart’s educational career and flag his account. They’d get an automated message about the flag, instructing them to return any borrowed items or they’d be forced to pay fines while the account was examined.
Technically he needed administrator credentials to report student accounts, but luckily Kurogiri had his login info written on a sticky note hidden on the back of the monitor. All in all it was a pretty easy job.
The whole thing had taken only a matter of days, in which time you had returned to the library only twice—the first to get confirmation on the success of Jin’s newest descent into low level crime which had set his heart thundering in his chest as you bent conspiratorially over his desk, your face just inches from his.
The second time, Jin had horrifically been absent from his desk, however he was met with possibly the most wonderful sight of his life upon returning from the labyrinth of shelves.
On one of the hundreds of post-it note pads that littered the library reception area, there were scribbles that he was sure hadn’t been there before. He almost tossed it, but upon closer inspection, you’d written your number there and signed just below it. In the cutest fucking handwriting he’d ever seen—cute not for any stylistic reason, but it simply felt that way just by virtue of it being yours—was written the digits and “-for book drop boy”
The noise he made reading that turned more than a dozen heads and almost got him fired there on the spot before any of his indiscretions were even discovered, but he couldn’t find it in himself to regret it.
So, nerve wrackingly, Jin texted you as he nearly sprinted home from his shift after that piece of shit asshole who made you cry had trudged angrily in and dropped off his ‘stolen’ book.
— from the library
— shit sorry that wasn’t meant to be in caps
— n e way….
— I’ve intercepted the ~package~ so whenever you’re ready for the hand off, I’m good
Most perfect fucking human being to…
Oh my god thank you so much!!!—
Is tomorrow at like 5ish good for you?—
Also send me your order—
so we don’t have to do that awkward waiting in line for drinks bit—
Holy fuck you multi-texted too! Spinner would roll over in his fucking grave, he hated when Jin did that. But there was always so much to say and he could never think of it all at the same time. Plus, you wanted to save him from that god awful silence where you both stand in line next but he can’t talk cause he has keep repeating his order in his head over and over or he’ll blank when he gets to the register so it’s just this painful weird glancing back and forth—
Ugh, maybe all the shit about manifestation that girl who always loaned him exacto knives in his sculpting class always talked about was real.
Cause there was no way you weren’t just heaven-sent, handcrafted especially for him and all his general brand of weird.
The hours which usually flew by without Jin’s notice dragged all that night. He was so full of excess energy that made his hand shake and his thoughts race, not sure what to do with themselves now that they didn’t need to fantasize about you.
He decided to use all that extra motivation to vacuum the kitchen at 4:30 in the morning, much to his roommates' chagrin. She liked to get a nice solid eight hours every night and constantly reminded Jin of this, trying to sell him on that sleepy time tea before bed, though he really hated the smell of camomile.
Magne may lose out on some of her beauty sleep—not that she needed it and Jin would tell her that constantly, even if he did have some patently horrible judgment most of the time so he wasn’t really the best at offering reassurance—but the kitchen would be clean when she woke up so win-win really.
When she did wake up—wandering out of her room looking effortlessly put together in a way Jin could never hope to emulate—she sat at the table, sipping her tea and appraising him worriedly.
Jin was still in his jeans from the day before, hair spiking in every direction but down, and chewing his nails nervously despite losing most of them to the hour or two of early morning floor scrubbing.
“Babe,” she shook her head slowly, “take a breath.”
“Yeah okay,” he sighed and inhaled deeply, letting himself slide off the couch cushions and to the newly sparkling floors on the exhale.
“There, now wanna share what the hell is going on?”
He glanced up at her from the hardwood and groaned as she looked back down, brows furrowed over her glasses.
“Huhh, okay. So that absolute work of art from the library is meeting me for coffee later cause I have trade over this book I sort of stole, it’s a long story, and I don’t know if it’s a date—it sounds like a date, cause that’s where people go for dates and shit—but it might just be to pay me back for stealing the book. And if it is I’ve only ever been on that one date before which was with fucking Spinner like two years ago so—”
Magne held up a hand to quiet Jin before the speed of his words tied his tongue in physical knots. She looked contemplative, taking another soft sip of tea and nodding her head for a moment getting up to crouch on the floor by his head.
“You think too much for your own good, but never about the right things,” she mumbled, smoothing some of the hair from his face. “Does it really matter if this is a date or not?”
Jin blinked. “What do you mean?”
“Well,” she chuckled in that way people do when kids ask them obvious questions—kindly, appreciative of the curiosity, “either way you cut it, you’ll be spending time with this person you like, yeah?”
“Mhm,” he hummed and sat up to face her as she stood.
“A date is just hanging out with a special name anyway,” Magne’s hands were firm but gentle as she hoisted Jin off the floor and onto his feet. “You’ll be fine.”
His shoulders slumped both in mild relief and dejection that he’d waisted so much precious time he could have been preparing possible topics of conversation or strategies to ask you out for real date on worrying over how this first time would go.
How did Magne always fucking know all this stuff?
Other people were such a mystery to him.
To be fair, though, Jin was a mystery to himself most of the time as well.
“Thanks, sorry for not saying anything about it earlier,” he sniffed as she smiled and pinched his cheek way fucking harder than necessary.
“It’s alright, I’m only a little insulted you waited until now to tell me about this massive crush you’ve developed.”
“Yeah it’s got its own gravitational pull at this point.”
Magne laughed at that and Jin felt the room lighten.
“I do expect details when you get back though,” she said pointedly, finishing her tea wandering back to her room to grab her bag. “Spinner asked me, very begrudgingly might I add, to fill in at another of his club tournament things tonight so I’ll be out late.”
“Really? I didn’t think you liked that stuff.”
Jin shuffled over to her doorway and peaked into the neat little space. Magne was rummaging through the meticulously organized closet and frowning as she answered.
“I do, Spinner just doesn’t agree with my battle strategies,” she huffed. “My alignment is far too ‘chaotic’ and ‘recklessly violent’ for his tastes apparently.”
“Oh, yeah that makes sense,” Jin laughed this time just envisioning the two of them stuck on a team. “Well have fun with that.”
“Yeah well,” she brushed by him into the hall, keys jangling as she went and calling over her shoulder. “Text me how it goes, and wear that new button up you got last week, it looks good on you!”
Much to Jin’s surprise and delight, Magne was right.
He was fine.
He was fine.
Fine was a bit subjective—as he was most certainly still highkey panicking on main as he got out of his last class and walked the short few blocks to the cafe on campus—but regardless he was perfectly okay.
Of course that all went right out the fucking window in the split second between him walking in and you already staring at the door as he entered. Your eyes widened just a bit and this smile broke out slowly across your cheeks when you waved him over and it was like suddenly every single creepy as hell day dream had just become reality.
It was a little overwhelming to say the least.
His heart may have actually stopped in his chest for a bit and he did contemplate the possibility that Kurogiri might have actually discovered his little plot, murdered him in cold blood and stuffed his body in the records room. This might all just be the afterlife, but that would mean that Jin had gone to some kind of heaven which didn’t really add up with his current tract record.
But it was fine.
Because you were really fucking easy to talk to.
Like, really fucking easy.
It was sorta strange actually, how you seemed to know all this shit he was into before he even really mentioned it.
After you traded off the goods, you both sat in the big comfy couches upstairs in the loft and you listened to him info dump, inevitably getting lost down innumerable unrelated tangents. You managed to keep up well enough though and not question the winding conversation.
“Damn,” he said, sipping at the last dregs left behind in his cup. “How do you know about all this stuff?”
“Uh,” you paused then, looking maybe just a bit sheepishly into your own drink. “I may or may not have spent a considerable amount of time eavesdropping into your conversations while you’re on shift.”
He saw flashes at that moment—dial up sounds going off between his ears.
Jin.exe has stopped working.
You grimaced and hid your face in your hands for a moment, “I know it sounds really creepy, my friends just sorta made a, um, game out of it? They tease me a lot about going to study at the library just cause of the cute guy that works there, so we all kinda stalk you a little bit just—wow this is sounding exponentially worse and worse every second.”
He gaped a bit despite himself as you cringed visibly and Jin tried to discreetly pinch his thigh to make sure this really wasn’t some sort of cruel, cruel fever dream.
“You think I’m cute…?”
He blinked once and your eyes shot up to meet his, a pained, half smile caught between your teeth. “I mean, yeah. I kinda thought I was being a bit obvious, sorry.”
“What no, holy fuck,” he spluttered, face on fire and legs bouncing restlessly against the couch across from you. “Don’t apologize, I have a, uh, staring habit too I guess.”
“I know,” you rubbed at the back of your neck and Jin didn’t think it was possible for you to be anymore endearing. “I’ve noticed, that’s like the whole reason I insisted on buying you a drink.”
“So wait is this a date?”
Jin wished almost immediately that he hadn’t asked, because Magne was right, it super didn’t matter but fucking shit on a stick he really wanted it to be a date!!!!
“Yeah,” you nodded. “If you’d like that.”
“Yes!—ah, I mean, uh yeah mhm,” Jin choked on his spit with enthusiasm, but it did earn him a concerned shoulder pat so he’d take the win.
It also afforded him the opportunity to walk you home after hours chatting until the streets were lit by burnt orange lamps and the cafe was closing. You didn’t live all that far from him actually and when you stopped to point out your door, the two of you were overcome by that telltale, charged silence.
Filled with potential.
Like a gas stove waiting for a spark to go up in flames.
It was you that struck the match.
“So, um, I promise I don’t just, uh, do this with everyone but, do you wanna maybe come inside,” you let your hand trail down his arm and slip into his palm, “I don’t feel like you’ve been properly compensated for saving my ass.”
Jin’s mouth was watering at the thought. He nodded slowly, eyes like saucers as you pulled him up your steps and through the door which shut promptly behind him.
Your place was nice in the sense that it fit you. He wasn’t really paying all that much attention to his surroundings as you locked the door and squeezed his hand in yours, leading him towards the end of the entrance hall.
When he stepped through to your bedroom, you toed off your shoes and he did the same, staring nervously and waiting for you to show him what exactly you meant by ‘further compensation.’
It was exactly what he’d hoped.
You approached him, still in the doorway, and stepped close so your chests brushed together. It was soft, the way you looked at him, sort of fuzzy around the edges while your hands trailed down his arms to place his palms at your waist.
It wasn’t like Jin hadn’t done this before—he totally had and definitely remembered all of it and wasn’t shit faced at all nope—but it hadn’t really mattered before. He knew in theory that he should take the lead, be a gentleman and make the first move and holy fucking god he was dying over there with the desire to finally live out his months and months of fantasies
But what if he did it wrong?
What if he ruined it now when he was so close to the finish line?
He’d never fucking forgive himself for it, and he could goddamn hear Magne in his head.
“You think too much for your own good.”
And he did, and he was right now, cause the room was only dimly lit by the street light streaming in through the window and you were reaching out to loop your arms behind his neck.
Should he lean down now?
Tilt left or right?
What if he clacked your teeth together?
What if—
Your lips were soft and hot against his, rubbing at the stubble on his chin before pressing close in that precious, puzzle-piece way human bodies fit together. He didn’t do much thinking after that.
His hands were too busy digging into the flesh of your hips separated by way to many fucking layers of fabric, and he couldn’t quite stop himself from indulging just a bit. Jin sucked gently at your lower lip, knees going weak at the glorious fucking sound you made in the back of your throat as he licked over the taught skin and tugged it between his teeth.
He could feel you smiling into his mouth, sharing breath and raking your fingers through the hair at the base of his neck. Jin groaned and you—fucking cheeky little bastard—slipped your tongue right past his lips and licked at the back of his fucking teeth like a popsicle in July.
Your hands in his hair hard tugged and his breath was coming faster, lips gliding against yours as the room turned to steam around him.
Through the haze he clung to the few remaining seconds of clarity.
Jin pulled away for one painful second to mumble against your lips.“You meant have sex, right?”
“Yeah,” your voice was barely more than a whisper, but you nodded frantically and rolled your hips against his.
“Ohh fuck, ‘kay good, thank god.”
For once Jin had nothing more to add.
And you weren't exactly willing to give him back his tongue long enough for any interruptions anyway.
“Holy fucking shit, look at you,” Jin gasped into your ear.
Both of your clothes had been discarded long ago, and he had your bare back to his chest while he sat propped against the headboard with your legs hooked on either side of his knees. It didn’t afford him the best view, but he got your head resting on his shoulder and pretty moans spilling right into his ear.
He didn’t need to see your pussy anyway.
The slick pouring out of your pretty fucking hole and coating his fingers as he pumped two of them into you was more than enough. His other hand wandered in the lovely expanse of space between your chest and your waist, running softly over the skin and pausing to pinch and roll your nipples just to hear you whine.
His cock was so fucking hard, trapped between your ass and his stomach, twitching every time you thrust your hips to meet the movement of his wrist.
“Jin, fuck please-”
You used his name every time you begged him for more and it was really going to his head.
“You’re so goddamn perfect, I’m gonna fucking ruin you,” he groaned and sunk his fingers deeper into your soaking cunt while his mouth dropped to your neck and sucked hard to mark you lovely skin.
He licked at the indents of his teeth, tasting your sweat on his tongue that tangled with yours again as your hand reached for his cheek and pulled him in. It was less of a kiss and more of a sloppy forming of your mouths that left you connected by a silvery string of spit that flashed in the low light. Jin sighed at the sight, rutting his hips against the cleft of your ass.
Your thighs twitched where they were spread and your hips lifted off the mattress to meet the languid thrusts of his fingers that curled up on every push in to hear the hitch in your breath.
He took pity on you and brought his other hand down to rub circles on your clit, listening for the telltale whimpers and the way your nails dug into his arm to find the perfect rhythm.
“I don’t really—mm, there fuck—feel like I’m paying you back right now,” you mumbled nipping your own trail of stepping stone bruises onto his throat as he picked up the pace and held steady on that sweet bundle of nerves.
“Are you fucking serious?”
He didn’t really mean to full on growl at you then, but just the thought that you’d really believe he wasn’t about to fucking drown in ecstasy just from watching you get off—just from touching, speaking, being in anyway acknowledged by you at all. Jin nudged your head to the side and bit down harshly into the crook of your neck, shuddering as you moaned and arched against his chest.
In any other scenario, he could never really find the right balance between too many words and not enough. The sheer volume of thoughts and interjections that raced like cars reaching the end of rush hour traffic made the formulation of any coherent conversation impossible, but now—
Now with your body so pliant in his hands, so willing and sweet and wanting him.
Wanting him.
What a concept.
He needed you to understand, to know how fucking over the moon, sunshine bright you had him burning.
And for once, he finally had the words to do it.
After all, he’d had months to prepare.
It was surprisingly easy to change your positions, to pull away from you for just a moment so he could roll and cage you on your hands and knees under him, ass in the air nestled against his cock.
“You really don’t think I’m getting anything out of this?” he groaned into you ear, rocking his length against you both for emphasis and because it felt so fucking good.
“Ah, well ya know,” your voice was so wrecked he was desperate to find out how much it would take for you to lose it entirely. “When you put it like that—mmh—I just feel bad you’re doing all the work. ”
You had this cheeky fucking grin on your face when you rocked forward so back so his cock slipped down to your dripping lips. The heat of your cunt was mesmerizing and it took a fuck ton of self control Jin was unaware he possessed to not ram straight into you right then.
“Yeah cause I’ve wanted to for fucking months goddamn it’s driving me insane.”
Now that he’d started, Jin couldn’t find it in himself to stop. His hands dug hard into your hips, rocking so the tip of his dick caught your clit and you shivered below him, hot skin sliding with the motion of your bodies.
“It’s all I think about whenever I see you,” he was shaking when his hand reached down to grip himself, spreading your folds and soaking his length in your slick. “When you come in to work I just fucking lose myself thinking about how bad I want you to be mine, my pretty fucking thing to bring me coffee while I work and let me fuck you in the backroom.”
You whimpered under him, face pressed into the mattress as he draped himself over you, chest to back with his breath ghosting over your ear.
“Literal hours I just sit there at that awful fucking job and I only keep coming cause of you, cause I can watch you sit all cute in your chair and watch the way your cheeks squish up when you put your face in your hands and imagine they’re my hands and I’m about to spit in your fucking mouth so you remember who you belong too.”
“I—” you were nearly choking on the drool that soaked through your sheets as Jin lined himself up with your pretty little hole, pressing just the tip into your heat. “I didn’t think you ever—nggh, shit—noticed much about me.”
The corners of his eyes burned as sweat dripped down his forehead, he had to hold back a sob as he sheathed another inch into those perfect walls.
“Notice you? You’re all I fucking think about,” he pressed his lips softly against your shoulder, hands running from your chest to your sides as you took his cock and every word that slipped from his lips without complaint. “I could take such good care of you. I just fucking know it, just please, let me take care of you?”
“Fuck Jin,” your voice was closer to a sob than anything else but he needs you screaming. “You don’t really have to convince me—”
His patience had run out long ago, not even willing to let you finish before he’d sunk in to the hilt, spearing you on his cock with one final thrust. You ass was flush with his hips and his balls hung heavy and tight against the back of your thighs. The strangled little cry that worked its way out of your throat had gooseflesh erupting across his arms where he held you to him.
Jin couldn’t really be sure—it wasn’t like his brain was all that functional on a day to day basis and it most certainly was not now—but your walls clenching around him and that addictive warm, wet feeling milking his cock was on a whole other level than any fuck he’d ever had before.
There was something about the curve of your back against his chest, and the way you seemed to suck him in, drawing his length back in just seconds after he’d pulled out. Some about the feeling of your chest in his hands, of the sweat on your skin that he licked off in a long strip up your spine. Like you really were made for him. As though all those months spent in dream land, concocting your pretend lives together had spilled over into reality, molding you into the perfect shape to take him deep and hard and cry while you came on his cock just like he knew you were meant to.
“Oh, fuck yeah, gonna make you feel so good, I promise,” he mumbled, forehead pressed to the nape of your neck as his hips drew back and he sunk into you over and over again.
He needed you to moan louder, needed your neighbors on the other side of every wall to hear what he did to you, how he fucked you dumb on his cock and made you drunk with the pleasure of it—slutty and perfect and better than any fantasy he could ever concoct.
The room was filled completely with the wet slap of your bodies—his balls tightening up just at the squelch of you taking him—leaving only enough space for your cries and his grunting, no room left for any bitter doubt to creep in and ruin the sweetness in the air.
He could feel the surge growing in his stomach, the tensing in his thighs as his hips stuttered, but he needed you to cum first. Wanted to tip over the edge to the feeling of you spasming around him, so he let a hand slip from your hip to your folds. Jin only paused for a moment to run a finger around your stretched hole, feeling himself plunging into you, before drifting back up to your swollen clit and working the sensitive bud.
The mattress creaked and rocked along as Jin increased his pace, shifting his hips until his tip knocked against something that had your hands fisting in the sheets and your tongue lolling out in between cries of his name.
You didn’t give him much a warning, not that he minded really. Just a muffled shout with your head smashed into the pillows and the tightening of your walls surrounding him before he felt your whole body wracked with tremors so hard he had to wrap both arms around your middle and hold you while he rammed into you.
Jin wasn’t really keeping track of the filth that was pouring from his lips as he brought himself closer to release. A lot of encouragement, that you were taking him so well, cumming so pretty for him, mixed with a lot of thanks—for letting him have this, have you, for not casting him aside like everyone else always inevitably did.
He did have the clarity to drag one arm up and link your fingers together, pressing hard into the bed while blood pounded in his ears and his hips stuttered in their relentless rhythm. When Jin did finally cum, it was a strangely silent affair, all the words and sound that usually roared inside him dying on his lips as his cock spilled milky release deep inside you and your walls fluttered at the fullness.
And then it was as though every muscle in his body changed physical states.
Boneless, he collapsed onto you with a little huff. You didn’t even complain, just squeezed his hand tighter in yours and hummed at the weight of him.
“Well I think that was a, um,” you panted while he nuzzled his face deeper into your neck, “pretty equivalent exchange yeah?”
“I don’t know,” Jin kissed and nipped at the sweet skin of your shoulder, “I think you might have over paid a bit.”
You laughed, the joyous movement of your chest jostled him from your back and had his soft cock slipping from you in a gush of combined release. “I doubt that very much, I didn’t know I’d be getting to take your fucking load as part of the deal.”
“Shit,” he felt his heart seize in his chest, raising up on his elbows to look down as you turned to him. “I’m sorry, I should have asked.”
Your hand came up to stroke his cheek, clammy but welcome. He sat up enough so you could lay on your back and pull him back down to your chest amidst the sweat and cum slicked sheets.
“Don’t worry about it, I would have asked you to anyway,” you kissed the baby frizz at his hairline and if Jin hadn’t already melted into a puddle, then he certainly was now. “If I’d been able to talk at all.”
“Ha, yeah….”
A short silence descended in your dark bedroom. The noise of cars and the occasional shout filtered in through the window, but there was no other sound than your evening breaths. Jin tried not to ruin the peace while he had it.
It was such a rare commodity.
But he couldn’t say he mourned the quiet when you finally spoke.
“Did you wanna stay the night?” you asked in that soft way he always envisioned you would.
Soft so he’d know it was just a courtesy.
That you didn’t want him to leave.
“Uh, yeah, yes I would,” he stumbled over the words a bit, trying not to sound too eager but wanting you to know he would work a thousands shifts at the reception desk if it meant you held him for just a second longer.
“Good,” you sighed.
He felt you scoot down the bed and flopped onto his back so you could settle your head on his chest and drape an arm across his stomach. After another few minutes he felt you go limp at his side, soft and relaxed as you slipped away into dreams.
But though his muscles ached and his eyes felt heavy, Jin resisted the call to sleep.
He didn’t need to now.
You were here, in the flesh, and he could study you intently while his eyes were open.
No need for his brain to conjure up scattered images of you.
Because he had you now, tucked safely under his arm for him to keep and hold and fuck and love the way he wanted.
So there was no more need for sleep.
And no need for dreams.
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broadstflyers · 4 months ago
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A/N: I am so excited to be starting my first ever series. This is inspired by Taylor Swift’s “Cardigan” because her music creates stories in my head that I must write down on (digital) paper. Please keep in mind this chapter is written in past tense, and the story probably won't be in present tense for at least another few chapters. Let me know what you think! If you want to be on the tag list for the next chapter, or drop any (constructive) feedback, you can take this survey here.
Word Count: 2.3K
Warnings: None
Summary: They say at fourteen you’re too young to know you’re in love. But what if you aren’t?
Navigation: chapter two
Grade: 9 Age: 14 --------------------------------- As sure as you are that spring comes after winter, the sun rises in the east and sets in the west, and seconds turn into minutes, you know you are in love with Joel Farabee. Not the gushy “I want to hug you and kiss you and never let you go” love, the intense “I want to burst at the seams because I just want to scream it on the rooftops and tell you and it literally crushes my heart that I can’t” love.
Yeah, that love.
The problem?
You were only fourteen when you knew.
Yes, the grand old age of fourteen. The age you were supposed to be nervously texting multiple boys, wondering if you were going to be asked to the ninth grade dance and worrying about who your first kiss was going to be, or even the first person you were going to hold hands with.
It started on the first day of school, but the start of it all was less than romantic. You shuffled up the hallway with one of your best friends, your feet felt like lead.
“What’s wrong?” Luna whispered in your ear.
“I really hate math,” you huffed. It was the last period of the day, eighth period, and you had to spend it in what was probably going to be a room full of rambunctious athletes who would be itching to burst out of the room at the very sound of the bell. How did you know this? Because you had been stuck in a class like that ever since the beginning of middle school. It made for some laughs, yes, but for some reason a pessimistic attitude bitterly swarmed around you in dark circles. Also, math in general made you anxious, and it didn’t help that the last few years you had to fend for yourself because of your lack of friends in said class.
“Well, at least you’ll have me this year,” Luna attempted to reassure you and your looming anxiety.
“Yeah, but I wonder who’s going to be in our class this year,” you mumbled. Your stomach swarmed with butterflies, but you’d rather call them icky moths.
Luna opened her mouth to respond, but you reached the door frame before her. Before you could even make it through the entrance, you made eye contact with a group of rowdy boys sitting at a table directly in front of you. You stopped dead in your tracks. They paused in their shouting to turn and look at you and Luna, since you were only about seven or eight feet away.
You scanned their faces, and you recognized most of them. They were mostly hockey players that played for the local team that looked for a shot at the NTDP in just a few short years. It was Syracuse, hockey was a pretty big deal there. There was also the prospective varsity quarterback and his star wide-receiver, these labels given to them at just fourteen. Of course, more athletes. Suddenly, you locked eyes with this boy you strangely have never seen before. His hand was hovering in air over his friend’s head with what you could only assume is his friend’s pencil in a lame attempt to keep him from grabbing it.
He blinked a few times, and you might have blinked a few times, you honestly couldn’t remember.
You snapped out of your trance and looked over to the board that said, “Welcome class! Pick your seats for the first day!”
“Hey,” Luna nudged you and grabbed your arm, “let’s sit over there.”
She lead you to a table adjacent to the boys’ table, despite your unheard protests of being “too close” to them.
You took your seat huffing, and you pulled out your binder and got ready for class, something you wished the crazy boys would pick up on. Thankfully the bell rang, your teacher shut the door, and class began.
That’s the first time you saw him. Not very eventful, but hey, you two were awkward fourteen year olds just entering grade nine. Of course things were not going to be all fireworks and love at first sight.
A few classes went by, and the only disturbance that occurred was when the class was taking one of those horrible diagnostic tests. See, you really hated disturbances, interruptions, anything relating to that matter.
So when this dude named Joel (you learned his name when he was yelled at for playing rap music in the middle of class) started fooling around with his friend while you were trying to figure out why letters were in math now, you weren’t happy, to say the least.
And when he locked eyes with you and made a silly face, yours did not move in a rather unamused manner. You simply blinked and looked back down at your test.
You missed his face slightly fall, but it was short lived when the teacher yelled his name from across the room and made everyone jump ten feet. He was quiet after that.
It was a random Tuesday in late October.
You and Luna were chatting about your previous classes, until you both stopped in your tracks and you raised an eyebrow. Everyone in your class was standing up and congregating away from tables. You could hear the ominous music creeping over everyone’s heads.
“Oh no,” you whined to Luna.
She winced. “We’re being assigned seats, aren’t we?”
You nodded. You both stood in the sea of kids and awaited your fate.
“Alright, everyone,” your teacher said. “You guys have been extremely chatty lately.” She paused to side-eye Joel and his friends.
He opened his mouth to protest, but he quickly shut it when she frowned.
“So you leave me no choice, but I must assign seats,” she dramatically said as she unveiled the new seating chart on the board.
Everyone pushed and shoved to the front to see where their name lied in the cards of fate. You heard some soft celebrations and loud protests.
You nudged your way in and scanned up and down the board. Luna wasn’t at the same table, but she was sitting facing towards you at another table. Hopefully you and her would be able to make eye contact. You scanned until you see your name fall right next to someone who you would rather forget you treated so poorly. It was there in bright, bold red.
Joel Farabee.
“Aw man,” you and a voice said in unison. You looked up at your side to see that it’s him. Oh dear brother. Did you both just admit out loud that you don’t want to sit next to each other? You and him rolled your eyes at each other, huffing that you’ll be forced to be in each other’s presence.
And you knew he was thinking some sort of variation of what you were: how dare your teacher.
You trudged over to your seat and plopped down. He threw down his stuff and sat next to you. You could sense his extreme dislike for your rather serious demeanor. Hey, you could crack a smile.
Just not around him. And for the life of you, you couldn’t figure out why. It’s almost like if you did, you knew you would never stop...
You both avoided eye contact, you played with your pencil as he yelled to one of his friends across the classroom about some stupid video game.
And that’s just how it was for weeks. You’d both come in, sit down, he’d scream to his friends, you’d fight shooting him a really dirty look.
Until one day, you accidentally did. Now, later when you told Luna, you swore up and down you didn’t mean to, and it was just the fact that seventh period gym was terrible (but when was it not). Okay, so maybe you were fed up with him yelling about whatever rap song came out, or whatever Instagram model popped up on his feed (that made you shutter).
But what you did wasn’t really admittedly the nicest.
“Joel, do you always have to yell so freaking loudly?” you snapped.
He feigned a stunned expression, or maybe he really meant it, who knows what goes on in that boy’s seemingly empty head.
“Do you have to be such a downer…like all the time? Kinda ruins the vibe bro.”
You rolled your eyes. “Thanks Joel, because the number one thing I care about is ruining your ‘vibe’,” you put that word in air quotes, “and not getting any work done in this class, bro.”
Now he rolled his eyes. “Look, you could benefit from loosening up a little, you know? You’re kind of just, not a fun person.”
A look of real hurt flashed across your face. One that he caught. “No,” you punctually state. Then you turn your seat so you completely have your back to him and you’re facing the board.
Meanwhile Luna and your table-mates watched the whole situation unfold. Okay, and maybe most of the class.
And when the bell rang and he called your name, you simply decided you didn’t hear it.
“He’s calling you,” Luna prodded.
You just shook your head as you continued down the hallway to the bus. On the bus, you had some thinking to do.
Did he really think of you as...boring? You usually didn’t let the immature words of boys get to you, but this, this really hurt.
“I’m sure he didn’t mean it,” Luna insisted that evening while lying on your bedroom floor that same Friday evening.
“Yes he did, and he’s kind of right,” you begrudgingly conceded. “I haven’t been the nicest to him,” you sigh into your hands, “and maybe I should be.”
“Well, what’s stopping you?” Luna curiously asked.
“I, I don’t know.”
The following Monday, you winced and leaned into Luna as you approached the classroom. To say you were terrified is an understatement.
But you took a deep breath, held your head high, and locked your face into a neutral expression. You never let anyone get the best of you, and you weren’t going to let Joel out of all people be one of the first.
Luna offered a small sympathetic smile as she made her way to her seat.
Your heart beated out of your chest anticipating his arrival. Sure enough, you caught him out of the corner of your eye. He took his time and strutted around the room to talk to all the friends he had. He was obviously looking to avoid you, too.
Eventually, he made his way to his seat. He cleared his throat, but you didn’t budge. Ever heard of being saved by the bell?
“I’m going to hand back everyone’s quizzes from last class,” your teacher announced. You audibly groaned. That quiz did not go well. Who puts diamonds and boxes and something called factoring in math?
Sure enough, she shoved a C- into your sweaty hands.
“Dang,” you whispered.
You glanced over at Joel’s paper. 100%.
Are you kidding me?
His prying eyes had the audacity to spot your C-, as if you didn’t pry on his paper seconds before.
“That’s rough,” he said, trying to make eye contact with you.
“I- um, yeah, it is,” you choked out with your eyes still glued on your paper.
His heart broke when he heard your wavering voice. He had to do something.
“Can I see it?” He quietly asked, when quiet usually isn’t typically his demeanor.
You furrowed your brows in confusion. “Uh, sure?”
He took the paper and started drawing stars around the C- mark, very messily, may you add.
You went to take the paper back, but he moved it away from your grasp.
“One second,” he pleaded. He stuck his tongue out in concentration.
You tried to see how badly he was defacing your quiz, but the position of his arm prohibited you from peering over to see.
“Done,” he proudly said as he slid the paper back over to you.
Instead of a plain old C-, there was now...a C- with stars around it.
“Joel, this is very lovely and all, but why the stars around the C-?”
He smiled with his sickeningly sweet toothless grin, and your heart absolutely backflipped into oblivion.
“That’s not a C-,” he goofily joked, “that’s the moon, y/n,” he said through a smile. “See it?”
You looked up from your paper and looked at him in the eye. Your hands shook from adrenaline, your heart was fluttering, goodness, you didn’t know how you could feel any lighter.
That smile was going to be the death of you.
“Yeah, Joel,” you cracked a smile, “I do see it. Thank you,” you sincerely said.
Crack a smile.
You cracked a smile.
His heart skipped a beat. He knew instantly he was going to do whatever it took to keep that smile on your face for as long as possible. He didn’t care what he would have to do.
He smiled once more, and he turned to his buddies to shield his face from you. He didn’t want you to see how red it was turning. He proceeded to explain to them how perfect his stars were and how no one could top them. Something along the lines of “Bro, you have to see this one, it’s so perfect bro…” He also told them how he made you feel better while slapping his chest, for some reason, as in yeah, I made the mopiest girl in school smile. He sounded like he was priding himself on it.
His smile, the way he talked about you, those freaking stars. You’d let him draw those all over your arm instead any day.
At that age, you may not have known why there were letters in algebra, but you knew that the way he made you feel wasn't the same as you did with your two other crushes back in middle school. This just felt...absolutely weird.
But absolutely right.
And that’s the story of how at just fourteen years old, you knew you were absolutely screwed.
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galactic-magick · 7 months ago
Careful Not to Lose Her: Agnes x Reader
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Request: Is it okay for me to request an Agnes x Female reader fic imagine where reader meets her for the first time and calls her beautiful? Like she just randomly compliments Agnes and Agnes is surprised by that and gets shy but returns it? And maybe the two start flirting with one another all the time and maybe reader stops for a bit as she spends more time with Wanda (helping her with the kids) and Agnes feels jealous and stops talking and reader is all confused and confronts her and Agnes admits her feelings for her are true? 😊 I'm happy ppl r writing for her lmao I love her! And maybe they share a kiss 👀 (sorry this was a long request hah)
Summary: You and Anges become very close, but when you have to help Wanda with the kids more often it strains your relationship.
Words:  1300+
Warnings: light angst
Author’s Notes: I wrote this imagining it happening in the 80s/early 90s era, but you can probably picture it whenever you want.
You hear the doorbell ring, and Wanda gets up and smiles, “Oh that’s probably just Agnes, I’ll introduce you,”
You nod, pushing yourself off the couch as well. You haven’t met many people in town yet besides Wanda and her family, so you’re interested to meet some more hopefully friendly faces.
“Hiya neighbor!” Agnes waltzes in. “Who’s your new friend?”
“Oh this is Y/N! She just moved in across the street,” Wanda says. “Y/N, this is Agnes,”
“Hey!” you shake her hand. “Wow, you’re beautiful,”
Her mouth falls open a bit, and her hand freezes in yours, “Well I…gosh you’re too kind,” after taking a moment to process what you just said, she bursts out laughing, “Not too bad yourself, hun,”
You grin, following Wanda back to the couches to chat some more. She and Agnes tell you everything you need to know about the town, who to befriend, who to avoid, and where to spend your time. Wanda introduces you to her twin boys and her husband when he gets home from work, who eyes you a bit suspiciously. Wanda assures you he just has a cautious personality towards new people, so you try to shrug it off and not take it too personally.
“Well, I think I’m gonna head out, maybe stop by the gym for a bit,” Agnes announces, heading towards the door. “Would you like to come, Y/N?”
“Oh! I mean, sure! But I didn’t bring any workout clothes…”
As if out of thin air, Wanda hands you a set, in your exact size and favorite colors.
“How did you-“
Vision sets a hand on her shoulder, “Darling I thought we talked about not using your pow-“
“Eeeeer you go! Have fun you two!” Wanda smiles, pushing you and Agnes out the door.
You look at Agnes as the door slams behind you, “Did I miss something?”
“Oh no, those two have always been weird,” she shrugs. “I’ve stopped asking questions,”
“Anyway, let’s go! Don’t wanna miss the evening cardio dance class!” she takes your hand and leads you into the town square.
Once you arrive and change into your clothes, you meet Agnes in the corner of the gym, “Agnes I’ve never done one of these before, I have no idea what I’m supposed to do-“
“Oh, relax. No one does. It’s just for fun!” she playfully pokes your arm, “I only started coming because my ex-husband Ralph told me I should find somewhere to get all my excess energy out, but now I do it to have a good time,”
You nod as you hear the teacher of the class crank up the music and lead everyone in some warm-ups.
Surprisingly it’s just as Agnes said, and you end up having more fun than you’ve had in a while. You just move and dance around with her, singing loud and off key to the tunes, and laughing so hard that you’re afraid you’ll disrupt everyone enough to get kicked out.
Thankfully you don’t get kicked out though, and you leave the gym still laughing and very sweaty.
“Alright I’ll admit, that was pretty fun,” you agree. “We should hangout some more sometime!”
“Oh, yes please,” she chuckles. “I’m free anytime you need me to be,”
And just like that, you spent as much time with her as you possibly could. You went to classes with her every Tuesday, went on errands with her, and went out for dinner a few nights a week as well. You were inseparable, and it shocked you how it was so after so little time. You just bonded with her so well, and you feel like you can be yourself with her.
One day while you’re headed out to meet up with her, your phone rings.
“Hey Y/N! It’s Wanda. So sorry to bother you, but would you be willing to babysit the boys tonight? I know it’s last minute, but something came up that I really need to take care of,”
“Is everything okay?”
“Oh yeah…everything’s fine, just, some things aren’t running as smoothly as usual, ya know…at work,”
“I didn’t know you had a job-“
“So will you be able to make it?”
“Yeah, I can be right over,”
You hang up the phone with a slight sense of unease. Something wasn’t right with Wanda, but you’re always open to helping a friend, so you try not to think on it too hard.
On your way over, you knock on Agnes’s door to tell her there was a change of plan. She’s disappointed, but she agrees to reschedule another time.
Unfortunately it’s not the only time this happens. Wanda starts asking for your help a little more often, and you have to cancel more meetups with Agnes. Sometimes Wanda sticks around and sometimes she’s gone, but either way you can tell why she needs so much help with the kids. They’re not awful by any means, but twins can be difficult for anyone, especially new parents.
Eventually you have to cancel so much that you just stop rescheduling, telling Agnes that you’ll just let her know when you’re free, but that time starts to exist less and less. Sometimes she’ll stop by the Vision household to say hello, but you’re not able to talk very much.
By the time Wanda lets you off the hook a bit and needs your help a little less, your friendship with Agnes is nearly gone. Whenever you see her in the grocery store or just around town, she avoids your gaze and turns the other way.
After a couple weeks of failing to get her attention, you’ve had enough. You aren’t going to let her get away that easily.
You knock on her door and ring the doorbell repeatedly until she finally caves and opens it, her face sadder than you’ve ever seen it.
“Why are you avoiding me?” you demand, harsher than you meant to.
“Well sorry I don’t want to hang out with someone who doesn’t have time for me anyway,” she scoffs.
“I do have time for you!”
“Oh really? Where was all that time for the past I don’t even know how long? Oh yeah, you spent it with Wanda instead,”
“I was helping her!”
“I’m not mad at you for helping her! But you couldn’t say you weren’t available at least sometimes?!”
“I was trying to be nice!”
“I’m sure you were,” she rolls her eyes. “But it wasn’t very nice to me,”
“Agnes, look, I’m sorry-“
“You know what? No. That’s not good enough,” she points a finger. “I like you, Y/N. I like you more than I’ve ever liked anyone. I thought we had something going, I thought we were special to each other. But I guess I wasn’t worth giving some effort back,” she starts to close the door, but you grab it first.
“Agnes, please,” you sigh, a tear falling from your eye. “I’m so sorry. I really am. What I did was wrong. I’ve always struggled with saying no to people who need help, but I know that isn’t an excuse to abandon anyone, and I won’t do it again. I like you too, and I’ll do everything I can to make this up to you,”
She looks at you a moment, taking in your words.
“I suppose I forgive you,” she finally says. You look up and smile. “And I suppose you can make it up to me by taking me on an official date,”
“Yes, yes, of course,” you nod vigorously, wrapping your arms around her in a tight hug. When you pull away slightly, you give her a quick kiss, barely a second, but enough to get a reaction. “Oh my gosh I’m so sorry, I should’ve asked first-“
Before you can finish apologizing for overstepping, she grabs you back and kisses you for real, hard and longer than you care to count.
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eminems-skittles · 5 months ago
wedding bells [spencer reid x reader]
spencer reid x fem!reader part three of family game night and lazy days warnings: none word count: 3.5k
☾ ⋆*・゚:⋆*・゚:⠀ *⋆.*:・゚ .: ⋆*・゚: .⋆
"Oh, Y/N! You look absolutely stunning!" Emily cooed when she saw Y/N in the white dress she was trying on. It was a slim dress with lace details on the ends of the sleeves. It didn't have a puffy skirt and it fit Y/N perfectly.
"Like a goddess sent to Earth," Penelope said in awe when Y/N did a small spin. Y/N walked in front of the mirror, her eyes scanning the dress. She let out a sigh of disappointment, Penelope's smiling face faltered. "What's wrong, sweet cheeks?"
"I really wanted this dress to be the one," Y/N sighed. She smoothed the dress down with her hands. She loved the dress but something in her told her it wasn't the one for her. Y/N bit her lip in an attempt to stop the tears from falling. She didn't even know why she was so upset about this. It was just a dumb dress. "I don't know if it is."
"Well, that's okay, Y/N/N," JJ said, coming over to stand next to Y/N. She rested a hand on her back, rubbing it gently. "There's so many dresses you still can try on. It's alright if this isn't the one."
"You're right. You're right," Y/N said as she leaned against her best friend. "I'm just so stressed about this whole thing. The wedding is only two months away and I'm just now getting a dress."
"I know, sweetie," JJ cooed. "But luckily you have most of the planning done and can just relax after this. And you have a kick-ass bridal party who will do anything and everything to make sure the day goes smoothly."
Emily and Penelope walked over to Y/N and JJ, joining them in front of the mirror. Emily gently grabbed Y/N's hand, squeezing it. "Y/N/N, it's all going to be okay."
Suddenly, Penelope gasped before running over to a dress that was hanging on a rack next to the mirror. She grabbed the dress, which Y/N had still not seen clearly, before thrusting it into Y/N's arms. "Oh! You have to try this one on! Look how gorgeous it is."
Y/N peered down at the dress and felt a tingle in her heart. She quickly excused herself from her bridesmaids before hurrying into her reserved dressing room. As quickly as she could, with the help of one of the saleswomen, she changed out of the first dress and into the one Penelope had handed her.
"Wow, sweetie, you look absolutely stunning," The saleswoman said when she finished helping Y/N.
"Thank you," Y/N said, taking a deep breath. She turned around and looked in the mirror for the first time. Tears sprung to her eyes as she looked at herself in the gorgeous dress. It was a long dress with a skirt that had small lace flowers on it. The sleeves were made of sheer tulle and stopped just above her elbows.The wait line had a white ribbon as a belt and the chest was decorated the same way the skirt was.
She stepped out of the dressing room and walked into the small sitting room where Penelope, JJ, and Emily were chatting. They were silenced by the subtle click-clack of the shoes Y/N was wearing. When their eyes fell upon the soon-to-be bride, gasps left each of their mouths.
"You're stunning!"
"This is the one!"
"You look amazing!" They all complimented at once.
"Do you like it?" JJ questioned.
"I love it," Y/N said through a watery smile. "This is it. This is the one."
"Okay so if we put him here and my mom over here, then we should be okay," Y/N mumbled, moving around a small paper with her mom's name on it. The wedding was in two weeks and she was just now getting to the seating chart. It wasn't like she was putting off finishing the planning, but when a serial killer is on the loose, a seating chart is the least of her worries. "Ugh but wait, he can't sit next to him otherwise there will be fighting."
"How's it going darling?" Spencer asked, setting down a cup of coffee and pressing a kiss to Y/N's cheek. She hummed when he rested his chin on her shoulder.
"I don't know. There's too many people who have tension. And a few people are bringing dates but I don't think we'll have enough seats unless we want to extend the seating area. But then some people will be outside and there's always the possibility of rain since it's Oregon in October," Y/N said without taking a breath. "I don't know what to do."
"Hey, hey, take a deep breath," Spencer said, as he moved to stand in front of her. "We will figure it out, my love. There's no need to stress."
Spencer helped Y/N stand up before taking a seat in the chair she was previously occupying. He pulled her into his lap and held her tight. Y/N sighed, leaning against his chest. "There's just no way it will all work. Ew, what's that smell?"
"The coffee?" Spencer asked, confused. Y/N nodded, before pushing the coffee as far from her as she could. Spencer grabbed it, sniffing the coffee before setting it back down on the table. "What's wrong with the coffee?"
"I don't know the smell is just bothering me," the same tone of confusion in her voice.
"Hm, okay," Spencer said, brushing off her strange behavior. He readjusted the two of them so he could look at the seating chart. "Let's see... What if instead of the two of us sitting at the front by ourselves, we have the whole bridal party sit in the front with us? The venue said that that was an option and it wouldn't cost more to add it."
"I forgot about that option," Y/N said, mumbling.
"See, it's not hopeless," Spencer said, hugging her closer to him. "So if we just move these guys up here, that opens up a whole table. Now we don't have to worry about anyone getting rained on. I'll call the planner first thing tomorrow to let her know we want it changed."
"What would I do without you?" Y/N said, leaning up to kiss Spencer's cheek. She looked back down at her left hand, her shiny ruby engagement ring catching her eye. "Two more weeks, and I'll be Mrs. Spencer Reid."
"I can't wait," Spencer said, interlocking his hand with hers. "How busy are we going to be in the next couple weeks?"
"Well," Y/N pulled out her phone to check her calendar. Luckily, Hotch gave the two of them the two weeks before the wedding off so they didn't have to worry about being on the other side of the country when they had to finalize details for the biggest day of their lives. "Tomorrow I have the final fitting for my dress and then we leave for Oregon the day after and meet with the DJ the day after. Explore Oregon Monday and Tuesday. Then the team and our families should all be flying in that night. JJ is picking my dress up before they go to the airport. Rehearsal dinner and final preparations on Friday, so that gives us a few days with everyone before the chaos begins. Saturday is the wedding and then Sunday, we have brunch with everyone. And on Monday we leave for the honeymoon."
"Wow...I don't think I've ever been busier," Spencer laughed. He pressed a kiss to the top of Y/N's head as she snuggled closer to him.
"Alright, Miss Y/L/N, we're going to have you try the dress on one last time to make sure it fits." The saleswoman, Allison, from the fitting said. "So when's the big day?"
"Next Saturday," Y/N said smiling, as she put the dress on.
"Aww how sweet," Allison replied. "How does the dress fit?"
"It fits really well, except for like right here," Y/N said, motioning across her stomach. "It's just a little bit tight."
"Oh, well that's an easy fix! I probably just wrote down the wrong number when I measured with you. Let me just get the correct measurements," Allison said, pulling out a pink measuring tape. She pulled the measuring tape around Y/N's midsection. "Oh that's the issue. I wrote down a four where a nine should be. Sorry about that, sweetie!"
"Oh, it's no problem!" Y/N said, flashing a small smile at Allison. "So will the dress be ready by next Tuesday?"
"Yep! Like I said, it's an easy fix," Allison beamed.
"Y/N!" JJ said, engulfing her in a hug. Everyone had just arrived at the small inn where the wedding is going to take place. "How are you doing?"
"A little nervous, but excited," Y/N said. She looked around the room to see where Spencer was. He was animatedly talking to Rossi about some unknown subject. If she had to guess, they were probably talking about the architecture of the cute inn, since Spencer kept gesturing to the ceiling and stairs in the small sitting room. She lowered her voice and leaned closer. "Hey, Jayje. I need your help with something."
"What is it? Everything okay?" JJ asked, concerned.
"Yeah, everything is great. I was just wondering if you could run to the store with me to grab something. I realized I left some stuff at home that I need for this weekend." Y/N explained.
"Oh, yeah of course! We can go right now if you want?"
"The sooner the better," Y/N laughed. "Oh, one more thing. Throughout the day, can you secretly switch out the champagne for sparkling cider?"
"Uh, sure," JJ said, confused. "Why?"
"Just want to make sure I remember the whole day, you know?"
JJ, Emily, Penelope and Y/N were currently gathered in the bridal suite of the inn. Like Y/N predicted two weeks prior, it was raining. Not that she minded, the orange leaves on the trees stood out against the dark gloomy sky. She'd be lying if she said this wasn't how she pictured her wedding day. The rain was softly tapping against the glass as the four of them got ready for the big day ahead of them.
Like they had discussed, JJ had managed to sneakily switch out Y/N's champagne for a glass of sparkling apple cider and no one had noticed.
"So, Y/N, are you and Spencer gonna," Emily paused, wiggling her eyebrows, "seal the deal."
"Oh come one, Em! Grow up," JJ giggled from across the room where she was getting her makeup done.
"We all know that they have hot and steamy-" Penelope was cut off by a sock being thrown at her.
"Hey! That's enough," Y/N all but shouted as a blush settled across her face.
"What? It's just a fact," Penelope giggled.
"Whatever, let's just continue getting ready, shall we?" Y/N said, taking a big sip of her apple cider.
After a few hours of getting ready and taking pictures it was finally time for the ceremony to begin. The ballroom where the ceremony was being held was decorated perfectly. Warm lights lined the walls and small details of orange lined the seats and the altar. White and orange pumpkins lined the aisle, along with small candles in glass lanterns. The room had a wall entirely made of glass and the orange of the trees brightened the orange details in the ballroom. Rain still tapped lightly on the glass and on the ceiling, but it the most serene way.
"Oh wow, this is something straight out of a fairytale," Derek muttered when he and Spencer walked inside.
"I know," Spencer breathed out, a large smile on his face. "I can't wait to see her."
"I know, pretty boy," Morgan said, laughing. That was easily the millionth time since the night before that Spencer had told him. "I have super secret intel from a certain tech analyst that says your soon to be wife looks breathtaking."
"She always looks breathtaking, Derek," Spencer said. "Have you, uh, have you noticed her acting weird?"
"What do you mean?" Derek asked, raising an eyebrow at Spencer.
"I don't know, never mind," Spencer stammered.
"Mr. Reid, we're starting now," One of the ushers told him.
In a whirlwind of flowers, fabric, and faces, everyone hurried to their places as they awaited the beginning of the ceremony. Y/N's little cousins led the way down the aisle, tossing dried white rose petals at peoples feet. Spencer went out next, taking his spot at the altar. Next down the aisle were Emily and Penelope, who waved enthusiastically at Rossi and Hotch. Their orange and red dresses flowed elegantly behind them as they marched to their place. Following the two, Derek, Spencer's best man, and JJ, Y/N's maid of honor, walked down the aisle their arms linked together. JJ's soft orange jumpsuit fit her perfectly and matched the orange tie that Derek was wearing. Everyone held their breath as they anticipated Y/N's arrival.
Music swelled as the doors opened, revealing Y/N in her gorgeous dress. Her hair was pulled into a half up half down bun that was adorned with small gold butterfly clips. She wore a gold necklace that Spencer had given her for an anniversary and several gold bangle bracelets.
As soon as Spencer saw her, his eyes filled with tears that threatened to spill over. His heart burst at the sight and for a second he forgot that she was human. He always believed she was a goddess from the heavens above but now he was sure of it. There was no way any other human being could ever rival her beauty. As soon as she got to the altar (Spencer could have swore she floated down the aisle), Spencer pressed a gentle kiss to her cheek and took her hands. "You look so very beautiful, angel."
"You look very handsome, as well, my love," Y/N beamed. And he did. He was wearing a simple black suit with a flower on his lapel that matched the dark red roses Y/N had handed off to JJ. His hair was short yet still held the same fluffiness that it always had. When she looked in his eyes, he was the only person in the room, in the world, who mattered.
"Dearly beloved, we are gathered here today to witness the union of these two beautiful souls," The officiant began. Y/N barely paid attention as her attention was on the groom in front of her. "Y/N, did you prepare your vows?"
"I did," Y/N replied. She kept her gaze on Spencer as her grip on his hands tightened. "Spencer, you have been my rock, my love, and my best friend for more years than I can count on one hand. I knew from our first date that you would be the person I spent the rest of my life with. I think we both knew then that we would end up here. On our fourth date, I mentioned you proposing and you weren't scared off or upset. You wanted to talk about it as much as I did. I knew then that you were in this relationship for the long haul. I promise to love you like you have loved me for the rest of my life. I promise to care for you on your good days and your bad days. Spencer Reid, I love you with my whole being, forever and always."
Spencer removed his hand from Y/N's grasp to wipe away fallen tears. The officiant turned to Spencer, "Have you prepared your vows?"
"I have," Spencer said nodding, before turning his attention back to the beautiful bride in front of him. "Y/F/N, you are the light of my day, of my life, if I'm being honest. You're the only person who can manage to turn a terrible day into an exceedingly amazing day. You are my one true love and I have never doubted for a second that you wouldn't be. I want to spend every second of my day with you for the rest of my life. I want to take care of you on your good days, and especially your bad days. I want to raise a family and grow old with you. I want to love you for the rest of my life. I love you forever and always, Y/F/N."
"That was very beautiful," The officiant remarked. "Do you, Y/F/N, take Spencer Reid as your lawfully wedded husband, in sickness and in health, until death do you part?"
"Hell yeah, I do," Y/N said, earning a few laughs from the bridal party. Spencer beamed at her, tears sliding down his cheeks.
"Do you, Spencer Reid, take Y/F/N as your lawfully wedded wife, in sickness and in health, until death do you part?"
"I do," Spencer said, squeezing Y/N's hands in his.
"By the power vested in me by the state of Oregon, I now pronounce you husband and wife. You may now kiss the bride," The officiant said. As if his life depended on it, Spencer cupped Y/N's face with his hand and smashed his lips onto hers. Their tears mixed together as they kissed for what felt like an eternity. When they broke apart, their foreheads resting on each other, they were greeted with applause and cheers from their family and friends. "Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you, Doctor and Mrs. Spencer Reid!"
"We're married," Y/N whispered against Spencer's lips before he kissed her again.
"That we are, Mrs. Reid," He said after breaking away from the kiss.
Everyone stared in awe at the gorgeous decorations in the ballroom. After the ceremony ended, the ballroom was quickly converted to have a dance floor surrounded by several round tables. Warm yellow string lights hung from various spots on the ceiling. The tables were decorated with small pumpkins and white candles. Spencer and Y/N were currently talking to their teammates as people were slowly filing into the reception.
"Y/N, you look amazing, caro," Rossi said, hugging Y/N. "Congratulations, you two. The ceremony was so beautiful."
"He cried," JJ said as she was walking by with Will.
"I did not," Rossi said, earning a playful glare from Y/N. "Okay, fine, maybe I did."
"I cried too," Penelope said, wiping her nose. She was, in fact, still crying.
"We know, babygirl, we know," Derek said laughing.
"I'd like to propose a toast," Rossi said, raising his glass. He turned to where Y/N and Spencer were standing. Y/N had her back against Spencer's chest and Spencer had wrapped his arms around Y/N's midsection. They were both holding glasses filled with champagne, or so Spencer thought. "To the newly weds. May life bring you happiness and fortune."
"And to becoming a badass married couple who takes down serial killers," Emily said, laughing loudly.
"Cheers!" All of them said at once.
After everyone had begun eating, it was time for Spencer and Y/N's first dance.
"Everyone may I have you attention," the DJ's voice filled the room. "I'd like you all to help me welcome the couple of the evening, Spencer and Y/N, onto the dance floor for their first dance."
Their friends and family started clapping and cheering as Spencer and Y/N walked to the center of the floor. 'The Way You Look Tonight' by Frank Sinatra played through the speakers. Spencer placed a hand on Y/N's waist and took her hand in his other hand and Y/N looped her free arm around his neck.
"I can't believe we're married," Spencer said, looking in her eyes as he twirled them across the dance floor.
"Me neither," Y/N said, smiling back at him. "I can't wait to spend the rest of our lives together."
"Me too, my love," Spencer laughed softly before kissing her cheek.
Y/N pecked his lips before laying her head on his shoulder, letting him know she just wanted to stay in one spot. They swayed to the song, quietly conversing.
"Spence?" Y/N questioned, her breath tickling his neck.
"Yes, my love?" Spencer replied.
"I'm pregnant."
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shireness-says · 8 months ago
The Set-Up Scam
Summary: They’ve always been friends first and foremost - Emma and Killian, Killian and Emma - until suddenly, they’re something a little more too. But with a $600 betting pool on the line about when they’ll actually get together - well, maybe there’s incentive to keep the good news a secret. ~5.5k. Rated T for language. Also on Ao3. 
A/N: Merry Christmas, @nevertothethird! I was delighted to be your pair for @cssecretsanta2020. It’s been wonderful chatting with you, and I look forward to a full stalking. ;)
You said you liked secret dating, friends to lovers, and characters being forced to work together - so I, like a fool, tried to include all three. I hope you like the result!
Special thanks, as always, to my beta, @snidgetsafan - the greatest treasure under any tree.
Tagging: @ohmightydevviepuu, @welllpthisishappening, @thisonesatellite, @let-it-raines, @kmomof4, @scientificapricot, @thejollyroger-writer, @superchocovian, @teamhook, @optomisticgirl, @winterbaby89, @searchingwardrobes, @katie-dub, @snowbellewells, @spartanguard, @phiralovesloki, @profdanglaisstuff
Enjoy - and let me know what you think!
They’re friends, first and foremost. Best friends, really - Killian and Emma, Emma and Killian. Partners in crime and two peas in a pod and every other cliché there is (and Killian would definitely know all of them). It’s been that way since the very beginning, when Killian let her peek at his attendance quiz answers in that awful intro to astronomy class in college. Their relationship had grown from there: late nights in the library and each others’ dorm rooms, studying or watching movies or chatting, all the way through graduation and eventually grad school. They get each other in a way that usually doesn’t happen for Emma, both coming from rough backgrounds and determined to make the world a better place because of it. Hell, they even work together now at Misthaven County Middle School - Killian as an English teacher, and Emma as a guidance counselor. 
And all that time, it’s been strictly platonic. 
It’s not like Emma hasn’t looked. He’s an objectively good looking man, and smart and sweet and funny. But he’d been in some “it’s complicated” situation with a grad student when they’d met, and then Emma was in that weird period where she and Graham gave it a shot, and by the time they were both available… well, by that time, they’d been Emma and Killian. Killian and Emma. A collective, a pair, absolutely entwined every way but romantically. He’d become her person, and it wasn’t worth risking that. There was no guarantee a romantic relationship would work out, anyways - or that Killian felt the attraction too. 
The thing, though, is that they’re Emma and Killian. Killian and Emma. Always together, always in each other’s stories, two birds of a feather. People constantly think that they’re together - or should be.
Emma doesn’t really mind, most of the time. She and Killian usually think it’s pretty funny, trading stories back and forth on his or her couch. Where it gets annoying is when each and every one of their friends are determined they should be dating. It’s been years of meaningful looks and hints about “so why aren’t you seeing anyone, Emma?” - but the last straw is the stupid, stupid bet.
“I just don’ unnerstand why you and Killian aren’t a couple!” slurs Mary Margaret, assistant principal and friend, at her yearly end-of-summer bash. “You’re ovviously in loooooooooove.”
“Sure we are, Mary Margaret,” Emma placates. 
“But why haven’t you yet?” she demands. “You made me lose the pool!”
That draws Emma up short. “I’m sorry, what?”
The little pixie-haired brunette frowns. “Don’t you know? We’ve had a betting pool going for ages about when you’d get together this year. I thought for sure it’d be the Fourth of July.”
It’s a good guess, actually - Ruby throws a famously boozy bash every year at her grandmother’s diner, conveniently situated right below the inn. It’d make sense for them to get drunk and take things upstairs - except for the fact that none of this is rooted in sense in any way, shape, or form.
“That obviously didn’t happen,” Mary Margaret frowns sorrowfully, staring down into her plastic cup full of god-knows-what. It doesn’t last long, though, as she perks right back up. “But they let me make a new guess! I’ve got my money on the Friday after your birthday.”
“How much money are we talking here?” Emma can’t help but ask. It’s like a compulsion, one she doesn’t like or understand. 
“Five hundred and fifty dollars.” At least that’s what she thinks Mary Margaret says; the slurring gets particularly bad on the f-sounds. It’s an astounding sum. Truly stupid.
Kind of tempting.
“And everyone bet that it would happen this year?” she makes sure to clarify.
“Yup!” Mary Margaret pops the p-sound and then giggles to herself about the noise. 
“Then I’m putting fifty dollars on it not happening this year. That Killian and I won’t get together.”
She means it at the time, too. Because yeah, there’s sometimes that niggling little what if?, but they’ve known each other for eight years. Emma and Killian. Killian and Emma. It’s not going to happen - honestly she’s not even sure she would want it to.
It’s not the Friday after her birthday, when they’re all going to hit the bar, but it’s the night before her birthday - a Tuesday. Killian comes over to grade vocab quizzes and eat greasy pizza, and stays to drink beer and watch stupid baking shows with her on the couch. Honestly, in so many ways, it’s a night like any other: two friends, just enjoying each other’s company.
Maybe it’s the beers. Maybe something’s been building for longer than she ever thought. Maybe it’s just that they’re both feeling good and, well, it is her birthday. But Killian kisses her - or she kisses Killian - they kiss each other and it’s like something slots into place. Like of course this was going to happen - they were just waiting for the perfect moment. It makes sense, in a way that Emma hasn’t let herself think about; he’s the person she trusts most, the best man she knows, probably the most important person in her life. Her best friend - and, probably, something more.
“That was…” he gasps, some indeterminable amount of time later. Somehow, he’s wound up on top of her on the couch - not that she’s complaining.
“Only the beginning,” Emma completes, smirking in a way she definitely picked up from him. 
Now that this has started, she has no intention of stopping. 
“Ok, don’t kill me - or, like, run away immediately - but I need a favor. A huge one,” Emma says much later, both of them naked and sated beneath her sheets.
Killian laughs beside her, peering up from the pillows with a smile. “After that, darling, I’m predisposed to give you just about anything you want.”
“And I’ll give it to you again,” she quips back, mostly to make him keep laughing. It works. “But seriously. Did you know that everyone’s got a bet going on us?”
That pops his head up. “I’m sorry, a bet? I… What? Who?”
“Seems like pretty much everyone. Ruby, Mary Margaret, David, Robin, Belle… I could go on and on. A six hundred dollar pool on when we get together.”
“Typical,” Killian mutters - though Emma catches a fond note in his tone. “Who’s the lucky winner, then?”
“Ok, this is where the favor comes in.” Hopefully this isn’t a breaking point for him; Emma would hate to have this taste of them, only to have it ripped away from her. “See, Mary Margaret told me about this when she got trashed at the back to school party, and I’d had a few too and was all hopped up on righteous fury or whatever, and I kind of… put fifty dollars in the pot that we wouldn’t get together this year at all.”
Killian stares at her for a moment, and Emma’s frankly scared that he’s going to get out of bed and go - but instead, he bursts into a near-hysterical cackle. “So you want to keep this a secret until the new year, so you can win the pot?”
Emma grins, knowing she must look like the cat that ate the canary (or however that weird-ass saying goes - again, English is Killian’s thing). “Exactly. We could spend it on a weekend getaway or something.”
“I’m in, then. Under the radar.”
“It’s just two months and change,” Emma says. “It’ll speed by. How hard can it be?”
Turns out - their friends are determined to make it as hard as possible. Even if they don’t know it.
Things are fine, at first. In fact, nothing really changes: Emma and Killian still show up at each others’ doors most nights, and Killian comes to hang out and grade papers in her office during his free periods most days. It’s just that their evenings are now filled with kisses and touches, and those afternoons in her office with all kinds of promises of things to come. It’s thrilling, in a way, to put on the front of normality for everyone else while only they know the truth. It’s nice, too, to be able to get their feet underneath them in this relationship without so many prying eyes watching them figure it all out. 
Just because they don’t know, though, doesn’t mean their friends stop trying. There’s a bet on the line, after all, and their friends have never exactly been ones to step back and let things naturally run their course. Not for those busybodies; not with six hundred dollars and Emma and Killian’s supposed happiness on the line.
(The fact that they’re right - that the two of them really are happiest together - is irrelevant.)
David, of all people, is the first to start meddling.
“Do you guys want to get dinner?” he asks out of the blue one day - calls Emma up on her phone and everything. “You and Killian and me and Mary Margaret, I mean.”
Emma’s antenna raises immediately. “What, like a double date? C’mon, David —”
“No! No,” he says hastily - a little too hastily, Emma thinks. “No, a cousin of mine - Kris, you’ve met him - he’s opening up his own restaurant. Some place with Scandinavian food, I guess?”
“That’s actually a thing?” 
“I guess. I don’t know, he studied abroad in Norway in college. Anyways, he could use a little business, support or whatever, so Mary Margaret and I figured we’d bring some extra people along. You know, help him out. And maybe Scandinavian food is good after all.”
“Yeah, maybe.”
The line sits silent for a moment, before David breaks. “So… you in?”
And as much as Emma suspects this is all some elaborate set-up - well, it’s supposed to be to help someone else. David’s cousin, who she has in fact met and is really a good guy. And so she reluctantly agrees. “Yeah, I’m in. One of us will have to check with Killian if he’s available —”
“What, he’s not right there with you?”
(He is, his lips kiss-swollen and pulled into a delicious smirk, but that’s not the point and none of David’s business.)
“ — but yeah, I’m down.”
In the week between the call and the dinner, Emma actually finds herself starting to look forward to it. Yeah, it won’t be a real date - not with David and Mary Margaret there - but it’s still a chance to wear a pretty dress that’ll make Killian’s eyes bug a little. She’ll have to pick something he’ll have fun taking off of her later, once they’ve pretended to go back to their own homes. 
Emma’s just pulling into the parking lot, however, when her phone rings, David’s name popping up on the screen. 
“We’re not going to make it tonight,” he says without preamble, followed by the most fake-ass cough Emma’s ever heard in her life. “We’re sick.”
“Yeah, sick off your own lies,” Emma mutters. “Alright, well, I guess we’ll go another time —”
“Oh no, I insist you guys still have dinner. You and Killian deserve to have a night off!”
“David, c’mon, don’t play dumb —”
He ignores her. “Besides, you’ll be doing me - and Kris - a huge favor. I already told him to charge whatever you guys get to me. Splurge a little, have dessert and a bottle of wine. It’s all on me.”
Killian climbs out of his own car as David pleads his case, cocking his head in confusion at the no doubt frustrated look on Emma’s face. He looks like he wants to kiss it better; Emma wishes he could actually do so.
“Fine,” she caves. “If you’re sure. But I’m running up the bill.”
“You say that like it’s a surprise.”
Emma takes particular glee in ending the call. She should have seen this coming. “Looks like David has come down with a possibly fatal cough, so he and Mary Margaret aren’t coming tonight,” she tells Killian, rolling her eyes. No need to resist that particular urge.
He snorts. “Ah, liar-itis. I thought he might be coming down with a case.”
“Complicated by meddler’s cough. Don’t forget that.”
“Of course not.” He dips down to capture her lips in a gentle, lingering kiss - another urge they don’t have to resist with none of their friends around to see it. “You look lovely tonight, Swan.”
She smirks back. “I know.”
“Of course you do,” he laughs. “I’m sure you wore that just to torment me through dinner. Now, shall we?”
“We shall.” Emma slips her hand through his offered arm. “Dinner’s on David, by the way.”
“I’d expect nothing less.”
“So, how was dinner?” David asks the next day, his cough mysteriously cleared up. 
“Good,” Emma replies, knowing exactly what he’s digging for. “Your cousin’s got a good lingonberry cheesecake. Don’t worry, Killian and I totally ran up the bill. Kris has been well supported. You’re welcome.”
“And?” he demands.
Emma makes sure to play up her confusion. “And… what? It was a great dinner, might even go back if I ever have a date, and then I went home. Honestly, what did you expect to happen, David?”
Even through the phone, she can almost hear him audibly deflate. Something like a sigh, or perhaps the sound of his entire plan collapsing in on itself. Personally, Emma thinks it’s hilarious.
(It’s especially funny when she vividly remembers the way Killian had stripped her out of that dress, can still feel the scratch of his beard on her inner thighs.)
(But again - those are things that David doesn’t need to know.)
The set-ups multiply like rabbits, and Emma starts to notice her and Killian being forced into more and more situations together, just the two of them. Fuck only knows why they think these clumsy attempts will work; after all, Emma and Killian held out for 8 years of each other’s company before finally getting together (without anyone’s help, she might add). Still, 
Trivia night is a weekly tradition for them all, down at the Rabbit Hole. Some weeks, the turnout is good; sometimes, not so much. They usually meet up at someone’s house and carpool from there because there’s not a ton of parking spots outside the bar, and it’s always worked well - two, maybe three cars instead of a half dozen or more. It’s a good time, and Emma always finds herself looking forward to Thursdays. 
Tonight, they’ve met at Robin’s, Killian’s former roommate. It’s a good crowd tonight, too - Robin and his fiance Marian, Mary Margaret with David, Belle the librarian, Ruby and Mulan, even Graham and Lance and Tink. The gang’s all here, probably trying to let loose a bit before holiday obligations set in, and they’re raring to go - all twelve of them.
Emma hopes that it’s not planned - that there just happen to be two cars and then some worth of people here - but it’s more likely planned. Robin probably twisted their arms to come, just for this.
“Emma, would you mind checking the door one more time?” he calls as they congregate in the driveway. “I’m sure I locked it, but I’ve just got that niggling little feeling…”
“Sure, no problem.” And it isn’t - it’s checking the damn door. Except it’s actually winding down his stupidly picturesque front garden path to the front door, and then having to maneuver around the always-unlocked outer glass door to make sure that the real door is locked, and then maneuvering and winding and everything back… and by the time Emma makes it back, everyone’s already piled into Mary Margaret’s station wagon and Robin’s little SUV, even the middle seats everyone usually hates, leaving just the conniving man himself and Killian standing on the asphalt. 
“Sorry, looks like the two of you will be riding together,” Robin says, not seeming remotely sorry. “This is convenient anyways! I know how much time you two spend together, if you decide that it’s easier to crash together afterwards… it wouldn’t be a problem for the extra car to stay here overnight.”
“Oh, I’m sure it wouldn’t be,” Emma grumbles. “I don’t suppose you have any underlying motive here, do you Robin? Say, to the tune of six hundred dollars?”
“I don’t know what you’re talking about!” he responds cheerily. “I just really, really want you to know that you can keep your options open. And, you know, other euphemistic things if the urge moves you.”
(Emma does not leave her car at Robin’s overnight - but that doesn’t stop Killian from meeting her at her place afterwards.
“This euphemistic enough for you, love?” he teases as Emma pulls at his shirt, trying to tug the cotton tee over his head.
“How’s this for a euphemism: fuck me.”
“That’s not exactly how that word works, Swan.”
“I could not possibly give fewer shits about semantics than I do right now, Killian, unless it somehow relates to you getting your pants off.”
Somehow, even in the midst of their frantic stripping, he manages to laugh. “As you wish.”
She’s always preferred straight talking anyways.)
“Thank god I found you both!” Mary Margaret declares, bursting into Emma’s office a little too dramatically for her tastes. Until now, she and Killian had been having a wonderful lunch together, but that’s obviously a thing of the past now. 
“That seems a little extreme for a Friday,” Killian comments mildly as he sets his cafeteria burger back down on the styrofoam tray. Personally, Emma thinks the cafeteria food is disgusting, but Killian’s got a real fondness for the cheeseburgers, and especially the french fries. No one’s perfect, she guesses. “What terrible impending tragedy can Emma or I save you from, Mary Margaret?”
“Kathryn’s father is in the hospital, so she and Fred can’t work their assigned booth at the Winter Carnival tomorrow.” Storybrooke County School District’s charity carnival is a tradition every winter - one Mary Margaret takes very seriously. Something that’s clearly about to come back and bite them all in the ass. “Would you two be able to cover tomorrow? You’d be doing me such a huge favor…”
Killian raises a single eyebrow as he turns to meet Emma’s eye - that eyebrow that always seems like a dare. “My schedule’s clear this weekend. Count me in. What do you say, Swan, think you can find room in your schedule to save Mary Margaret from the tragedy of all tragedies?”
Emma rolls her eyes at the way he’s putting it on thick, but truth be told, her only plans had been spending the day with Killian. Might as well. “Sure, what the hell,” she says, reaching for another bite of her microwave pizza. “I don’t have anything else going on.”
In retrospect, Emma realizes that Mary Margaret could have done something terrible with this - assigned them to the kissing booth or something. God, she hopes that there’s not a kissing booth at a middle school carnival, but it feels like just the kind of thing she’d pull. Thankfully, they’re set up at the ring toss game. It’s not strenuous in the least; they don’t even have to take money, just paper tickets. Really, the only questionable thing is that they’re crammed right together in the box formed between the booth walls and the counter and the table of bottles behind them. Maybe that’s something that would have bothered her a few weeks ago, back when they were Emma and Killian but not Emma and Killian. Now, it’s just an excuse to get right up in his space and enjoy all those little touches, right under everyone’s nose.
(Maybe, every time they have to duck under the counter to retrieve poorly-thrown rings, Killian takes the opportunity to steal a quick kiss while no one else can see. And maybe - just maybe - Emma uses those same opportunities to steal her own kisses right back.)
“Soooooo, how’s it going?” Mary Margaret chirps when she pops up out of nowhere mid-afternoon. It’s like she thinks she’ll find them making out in the middle of the carnival or something. Which… fair. The urge is there. But they’re professionals - and Emma wants that money, dammit. She’s not caving here.
“Just fine, Mare,” Emma replies. “Nothing worth reporting.”
“There’s not? You two are looking awfully cozy in there… nothing to report?”
“Well, you’re the one who set up the booths, so…”
“Aye, just making the best of it,” Killian helpfully adds.
Emma almost feels guilty about the way that Mary Margaret visibly deflates.
“You know this was another ridiculous set-up, right, love?” Killian asks once their friend has walked away. “She probably never even needed our help. It was all a ploy.”
“I see it now,” Emma sighs. “I had just weirdly hoped she’d be above all that bullshit.”
Killian quirks that eyebrow yet again. “Mary Margaret? Infamous meddler? Of course not. It’s cute that you thought that though, darling.”
“Oh, shut up.”
(“Mary Margaret told me to take the weekend off, that they’d over-scheduled,” Kathryn tells Emma later when she tries to ask how the other woman’s father is doing. “Was that not the case?”)
(Fucking figures.)
Ruby, frankly, is not a surprise. In fact, if there was one person Emma would figure would be pulling this bullshit, it’s Ruby. The girl’s too competitive for her own damn good - not to mention that mile-wide chaotic streak running through her soul.
“Pucker up!” she crows, thrusting what Emma assumes is a sprig of mistletoe over her and Killian’s heads. They’re at Ruby and Mulan’s place for… some party; it’s probably, maybe holiday themed, but Ruby’s never needed an excuse to throw a party. Anything to get them all drunk and laughing and forgetting about the stresses of the week.
“Are you fucking kidding me?” Emma demands. “Ruby, don’t be stupid. This isn’t college anymore.”
“Oh, like we ever did this in college,” Ruby scoffs with that devious twinkle in her eye. “Besides, college shenanigans are a state of mind. And I’m not giving that up. Now c’mon, no weaseling out of this.”
“It is the rules,” Mulan points out, appearing to slip her arm around Ruby’s waist and drop an affectionate - if slightly tipsy - kiss on her shoulder.
“Yeah, you hear that? Smart half says it’s the rules. So go ahead and pucker up and kiss him. And then go make out for a while and maybe bone each other so I can win the pool.”
Killian blushes a little bit at the phrasing - something that’s surprisingly cute on him, knowing how often he usually tosses around the innuendoes and exactly how dirty a mouth he has when they’re alone. Before Emma knows what he’s doing, he leans in to press a gentle kiss to her cheek, and then another, smacking one for good measure. “Who are we to deny the great, determined Ruby Lucas?” he proclaims grandly. “One kiss: delivered.”
Ruby’s face gets a bit mutinous; it’s the only word for that particular storm cloud, really. “No it isn’t! That’s cheating!”
“Eh. Technically, it was a kiss.” God bless Mulan for being the only one willing to go against Ruby when she’s got a plan; perks of being the girlfriend, Emma supposes. 
“And more importantly, Rubes, that’s all you’re going to get from us.” And that’s Emma’s last word on the subject.
(“Happy Christmas, darling,” Killian whispers into her neck later once they’re back at her place, dangling his own sprig of mistletoe over their heads. “How about it? C’mon, give us a kiss.”
Emma is more than happy to comply.)
Emma wouldn’t say it’s common for her to get calls from the school librarian, Belle, but it’s not unusual either. So when Belle calls her up in mid-December, shortly before Christmas break, Emma doesn’t think twice about it.
“The new Scholastic catalogs are here,” Belle informs her. “I haven’t started sending them to classrooms yet, but if you want to take a look now…”
“I’ll be right there.” Yes, the catalogs are full of books for middle school students, but Emma still loves those things. They’re chock-full of nostalgia.
“I haven’t even taken them out of the box yet,” Belle explains when Emma meets her at the check-out desk. “They’re all still in the back room. Here, I’ll let you in.”
That should have been Emma’s clue here. Why would a box of new catalogs, just arrived in the mail, already be shoved into the storage closet? But Emma’s too excited about the prospect of those newsprint magazines to think about it. By the time Emma realizes there’s nothing in this little closet but printer paper and old yearbooks… Belle’s already closed and locked the door, trapping Emma inside. 
So it’s yet another set up, most likely. It’s a good thing she’s not claustrophobic, at least.
Sure enough, not five minutes later, Emma can hear Killian’s voice outside the door. 
“How many boxes did you say it was, Belle? I’m happy to help haul, but I’m just wondering if we should get a hand cart to assist.”
“Oh no, I’m sure it’ll be fine,” Belle’s voice responds. “Just a few trips for each of us. Right in here…”
And suddenly, Killian’s in the cramped little closet too, and the door is shut and latched behind them. Gee, what a surprise.
“Fancy meeting you here,” Emma comments dryly. Somehow, probably on some kind of ridiculous romantic instinct, Killian’s hands have already found their way to her hips. It’s nice, really, ignoring the circumstances.
His face is adorably confused, looking around the room and back to the door and then to Emma’s own face and all over again. “Did she just lock us in here?”
“Yeah, keep up, Jones,” Emma teases. “I assume another stupid set-up effort.”
That makes the confusion disperse alright, a smirk full of promise creeping across his face instead. “If that’s the case… we’ll just have to make the most of it.”
“Oh no you don’t,” she warns. “There’s a camera in here.”
“So? It’s not like she’s watching the monitors.”
“So, Belle recently started dating Will Scarlet in IT. You want to take the chance she locked us in here, and forgot to have her boyfriend monitor us?”
“Fuck,” Killian swears, dropping his head back in dramatic emphasis. “They’re really going overboard, aren’t they?”
“I’ll make it up to you later. I promise.”
Thirty minutes later, when Emma and Killian have done nothing but talk and try to find some little extra space in the crowded closet, Belle finally lets them out, just in time for the end of Killian’s free period.
“I’m sure you have no idea how that happened,” he comments, sarcasm dripping from every word.
“It’s just the weirdest thing,” Belle agrees.
Well, that’s one way of putting it.
(Emma makes it up to him, several times over, at her place that night, with a take-out pizza to boot.)
After what feels like an eternity, it’s finally here: New Year’s Eve. As long as they make it to midnight and the new year proper without anyone finding out, this whole ridiculous farce is over, and they can be the couple they’ve technically already been since October. Emma and Killian, Killian and Emma - but more than they had been before. 
They’d spent Christmas together - not that that was anything unusual. With everyone else going to visit family, the two of them often spend the day together, eating take-out Chinese and watching holiday movies. Killian’s got a brother back in England that he makes sure to call, and some years Liam will fly over, but Killian usually saves his visits for summer vacation, when he can stay in whatever little English hamlet his brother calls home for weeks at a time. There’s always something nice about spending the holidays together, just the two of them, but it was extra special this year. Who knew Emma was the kind of girl who wanted to trade kisses under the Christmas tree between swapping gifts?
(Killian, apparently - but then again, he’s always claimed to know her better than she knows herself.)
“Just a few more hours,” he murmurs against her neck, twining his arms about her waist from behind as Emma carefully brushes on mascara. “Few more hours, and then it’s all in the open.”
“Thank god for that, too. After all the PDA we’ve gotten from certain people all these years, I’m looking forward to rubbing it in their faces a bit.”
They carpool to Mary Margaret and David’s, just like they do every year. It’s routine, really; Emma always crashes at Killian’s after the annual New Year’s Eve party so that someone is there to help her with the hangover in the morning. Killian makes better hashbrowns than anyone she knows - even Granny - and they always manage to pull her out of the worst of her misery. He’s good about taking care of her, too, with water and Advil and making sure to shut all the shades as tightly as possible. They even share a bed a lot of years; it’s just that tonight, Emma knows there will be a lot fewer clothes involved.
They drink. They eat. They mingle. Sometimes, they’re together, carefully not touching, and sometimes they drift apart. That’s how this party usually works, after all - and Emma is nothing if not committed to seeing this entire thing through, pretending nothing is different this year, that she and Killian definitely aren’t together. Nothing to see here, folks.
God, she’s so fucking lucky he didn’t cut and run once it became obvious just how much of a competitive lunatic Emma is.
Finally, though, it’s the moment - less than a minute left. Killian is already waiting for her by the patio doors, just like he promised. Emma is only too happy to wind her way over there, grinning when she finally finds herself in front of her boyfriend - about to be secret no longer. Behind them, the assembled drunken crowd loudly counts down the last seconds of the year. They keep their hands determinedly to themselves - just as agreed, so no one can try and claim anything happened before the strike of the new year - but Killian still looks at her with that twinkle in his eyes and wiggling eyebrows. It’s anticipation, and excitement, and a good bit of joy - knowing that soon, this will all be out in the open. No more keeping their hands to themselves. 
“You ready for this, love?” he says just loud enough for her to hear as the clock hits ten seconds. 
“Hell yeah,” she grins back - because she is. She so is. This has been a long time coming - years in the making, really - and you know what? The whole secrecy may have helped her wrap her head around the whole thing, as well as win her the pot, but she’s ready to take it public. Maybe rub it in everyone’s faces just how happy she is and how she did this on her own schedule. Why the hell not?
Cheers erupt all around them, and Emma’s grin stretches to something that almost hurts her face. Killian looks much the same. “Happy New Year, love,” he says, finally pulling her towards him by the hips. “I think it’ll be our best one yet.”
Fireworks are going on outside, lighting up the snow on the ground, but Emma can’t be bothered to pay attention - not when Killian attacks her lips with purpose, grinning happily into the kiss before she insistently deepens it, slipping her tongue into his mouth to play. It’s just another in a series of kisses, they know - but it’s more than that. It’s a display, in the best way, declaring them them.
Emma and Killian. Killian and Emma. A pair, a unit, a couple. 
“HA!” shrieks someone across the room as their make-out finally gains attention. Emma thinks it might be Ruby - though, at this point, it might be Mary Margaret. Maybe both. It’s definitely Ruby who materializes just as Emma and Killian finally break apart with a laugh. “It’s about fucking time!”
“Yeah,” Emma agrees - something that seems to short-circuit Ruby’s brain for a moment, if that look on her face is anything to go by. “It really was. And you know what else?”
Ruby shakes her head mutely, that twist of her eyebrows demonstrating that she’s still trying to get her bearings about what the fuck is happening here.
“It’s the new year. That pot is mine.”
“That’s my girl,” Killian whispers in her ear.
Best. New Year’s. Ever.
On January 1st of the new year, Emma and Killian - Killian and Emma - they, them, a pair, a unit, a couple take their six hundred dollars in winnings and treat themselves to a goddamn massive lunch at Granny’s. Together. In public. Because they deserve it. 
Grilled cheese has never tasted so good to Emma - especially the crumbs off the corners of Killian’s lips. 
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justanotherblonde23 · 9 months ago
I Think I Need A Hero - A Marcus Moreno Story
Author’s Note: Hello again, internet friends. I’m here again with the next installment of my Marcus Moreno x Reader (nicknamed Iris) fic. I hope you’re all liking and enjoying it so far. Still playing around with setting and such, I appreciate your patience. A massive thank you to @autumnleaves1991-blog for letting me bounce ideas off her her, as always. You’re my partner in crime! This installment comes with a very special dedication to @hdlynn who is invested in this story and this couple! Enjoy reading about our favorite superhero dad, Marcus Moreno. - xo Kat
Warnings: mentions of kidnap and torture (I wasn’t graphic or anything), mentions of blood and vomit, mentions of a hospital setting, male masturbation, mentions of trauma
Please leave me feedback, I’d love to know how you feel about this series!
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Dr. Iris Johnson was pissed, absolutely furious. Here she was, a terrific Tuesday, and she was tied to a goddamn chair in some evil corporation’s torture chamber. She wasn’t even technically a hero; she was a scientist and an engineer. She did not sign up for this shit in any way, shape, or form. She wasn’t even publicly associated with the Heroics, and yet here she was, Changeling Incorporated had found her anyhow. 
Was she surprised that someone had snatched her up on her daily commute to work? Actually, yes. In her years working with the Heroics, this was a bit of an unprecedented situation. She’d sure as hell never gotten snatched before, so it wasn’t like she had been looking out for something like that when she was sipping her large iced chai and listening to her favorite medical podcast as she meandered through the city streets. Fuck, she didn’t even live in an exceptionally secure apartment building. Sure, there was a lock and a buzzer, but that’s about as far as security went. Regardless, she was here now, and she was in a heap of trouble. 
Whatever they had dosed her with to knock her out was messing with her powers, at least her ability to move objects with her mind. Her brain was perfectly fine, as far as she could tell, but everything was quite fuzzy around the edges. She felt exceedingly nauseous, as the world began to tilt in her eyes, she leaned over the chair and wretched, coughing and gasping. Okay, so maybe her mind wasn’t on the highest functioning level, but it could be worse. She wasn’t dead or actively being interrogated yet, so that was a win in her eyes. 
The doctor closed her eyes, willing the dizziness to the back of her mind, taking deep, calming breaths to center herself. What could she hear? The drip, drip, drip of water hitting the floor, muffled voices from another room, something was clanging - possibly metal. What could she smell? Dampness, as if she was in some sort of underground area, maybe a basement of a commercial building. What could she feel? The icy metal cuffs digging into her wrists and ankles, the stiff back of the chair contraption she was sitting in, and oh fuck, the pressure of an IV sticking out of her arm. They were actively drugging her; that was never good. She wondered what they were giving her. Something to keep her complacent, perhaps? She wasn’t sure how long she sat there, eyes closed, waiting for whatever was coming next. She figured that she might as well be as calm and as still as possible until the information presented to her told her to do otherwise. 
The clacking of heels prompted her eyes to shoot open. She was face to face with a sinister-looking woman who was smiling coldly down at her. Well, a woman, that was a bit of a surprise. Far be it for Iris to eliminate women from any position, she just wasn’t exactly expecting to see her interrogator be one. Well, there was a first time for everything. 
“Ah, Dr. Johnson, it’s good to see you’re awake. I wasn’t sure how far your enhancements went, so I opted to drug you a bit heavier than I normally would, just to be safe. I didn’t want your powers interrupting our little chat.” 
Iris returned the cold smile, “We wouldn’t want a fair fight, of course not. When Changeling Inc gets their grimy hands on someone, they won’t play fair. It’s not as if we could have an office chat, hmm?” 
Her captor laughed, smacking her across the face with a resounding smack, whipping her face to the side. She could taste blood in her mouth, so this was how they were going to play it. What a fucking surprise. 
Marcus was working in his office, baby Jules playing with her favorite stuffed animal on his lap. He didn’t like having her in the nursery all day, so he kept her with him if he was doing desk work. Missy was in school, so it was just Daddy and baby time. He frowned when a memo popped up, an alert for his friend Dr. Iris Johnson. She helped him contain Jules’ powers until she was old enough to learn how to use them properly, and they had grown quite close in these past few months. The memo detailed that she was missing. Her apartment was searched, she had been called multiple times, she wasn’t in the lab or her office, and the records detailed that she hadn’t used her ID card to get into the building this morning. She always showed up to work; it was her passion. He was eternally in awe of her boundless energy, determination, and inventions. He had seen her sleep in the small living quarters attached to her lab space when she was onto something huge. He’d never seen her sick, unable to work, or not in the mood to work. She was a force he could never dream of taming, nor did he want to. The fact that she hadn’t turned up was concerning. 
The information he had detailed that she had used her credit card to purchase a coffee from her typical Starbucks just like any other day; there was no variation in her routine. Somewhere between that coffee shop and the Heroics headquarters three blocks away, she had disappeared. He sifted through the footage that was attached. That was a smooth snatch and grab, plain and simple. They took her when she was walking past an alleyway, and from that glint he saw by her neck before she collapsed, they had drugged her with something. Whoever was behind this, they were smooth, professional. 
An idea popped into Marcus’ head, and he remembered that at one point, the doctor had mentioned that she had installed a tracking beacon in his uniform for when he went out on missions. He was pretty sure that she did that for all of the active heroes that were employed here. He wondered if she did it for herself, too. She didn’t have a uniform, though. Would she just wire up all of her clothing? Maybe a piece of jewelry? Her bracelet, of course! She always had on a delicate bracelet. It looked pretty high end, something that she could wear in both her personal and professional life. He didn’t think that he’d ever seen her without it on her person. He stood up, holding onto Jules and her stuffie, running down to Iris’ lab. 
He’d never actually been in this space without her before. He felt almost as if he was intruding on her personal space, but he needed to follow this hunch. He knew the code to get in; he’d been down here with his favorite doctor multiple times to run tests on Jules. Technically, this was probably considered breaking and entering, but he was way past caring. He flipped on the lights, looking around. Maybe he should try getting Iris’ AI’s attention. Was that thing active all the time? Would it respond to him without its creator? There was one way to find out. 
“Uh hello, B22 the AI? Are you awake? This is Marcus Moreno, and I need your help.” 
A disembodied voice echoed through the lab, “Good afternoon, Marcus. How may I be of assistance to your today?” 
He jumped slightly. He still wasn’t used to her AI system. Technology always amazed him, but voices without a body weren’t his particular cup of tea. Still, he needed to be friendly to the system if he was going to try and get what he wanted. 
“So I don’t know if anyone let you know or if you’re wired up to the building’s mainframe, but Dr. Johnson, Iris, is missing. She didn’t show up here today, and we have footage indicating that someone has taken her,” he began.
“I am well aware,” the AI system replied. 
“Okay, that’s good, that’s good. I remember that Iris once mentioned how she had wired all of our uniforms with tracking technology in case the Heroics team ever had to find a missing member. Did she do that for herself? I know that she wears that one bracelet every day; I’ve never seen her take it off. Has she, by any chance, wired that up with the same thing? Is there any way that you would be able to track her?” 
A holographic map of the city popped up on the table in front of him. It zoomed in to one of the industrial area’s seedier parts, not too far away from the docks. Marcus knew that area. Some of the villainous underground groups operated out of there. If he had to bet who had taken the doctor, it was most likely Changling Inc. They were always searching for information and tech that might help them in their eternal crusade against the Heroics. If the Heroics didn’t stand in their way, their darkness would encompass the entire city, maybe even farther. On the surface, there was absolutely nothing wrong with Changling Inc. It had the appearance of the average city’s high-rolling business. Only if you dug deep enough would you find the dark underbelly full of seedy business dealings, illegal experiments on human subjects, and a secure foothold in the black market. Overall, they were continuously up to no good and willingly put the city’s citizens at risk. 
He didn’t want to know what they had done to her in their quest for information. He knew Iris was sturdy, that she could hold her own, but she also wasn’t a field agent. She wasn’t trained for enhanced interrogation and torture. He hoped that his friend would be able to hold on until he could come and get her. 
Iris’ world was repeatedly tilting and moving around her, the drugs coursing through her system, skewing her perception of reality. She wouldn’t admit it to anyone, but she was terrified. She couldn’t tell the difference between what was real and what was a huge mind fuck from the drugs or her interrogator anymore. Her entire body felt as if it was on fire, burning her from the inside out. She couldn’t even tell that her screams were echoing through the building, the pain so intense that it overrode every other sense. She wouldn’t talk, she couldn’t speak, she wouldn’t risk the lives of thousands. She was more than willing to die to keep the information from getting into the wrong hands. She just didn’t want to have to. There was so much more that she wanted from life; dying wasn’t her favorite option. The doctor knew that if anyone could figure out how to track her, it would be Marcus. All she had to do was hold on until Marcus came to get her. Most of the time, she would insist on doing things herself, but she knew she was out of her depth here. Dr. Iris Johnson needed Marcus Moreno; she needed a hero. 
He made his way into the warehouse silently, his recovery team with him the whole way. They had taken out every threat they had encountered so far, but he could hear the doctor’s screams echoing off the walls. They couldn’t find her, they knew she was here, but the question was where? They had cleared each floor meticulously, searching for some sign of her. It was difficult, this place was mostly empty, and the concrete floors made every sound bounce around. He could hear the agonized wails, but where the fuck were they coming from?!
After sweeping the building at least three times, Marcus saw a crack in a wall. It was barely there, and you wouldn’t notice it unless you were looking for something. Carefully, he probed the area around the crack, trying to find the latch to pop the hidden door open. A screech echoed through, causing him to try and hurry. He didn’t want her suffering more than she already had. At last, he pressed a brick that caused the door to spring open, letting them through. 
By the time he got to Iris, her attacker was long gone. All that was left was the doctor, limp in an interrogation chair, barely conscious. He took in her form; from what he could see, she was a mess. There was an IV running something through her veins. She had two black eyes, blood dripping from her nose, ears, and mouth, and multiple gashes littering her body. Her clothing was drenched in red, tattered, barely covering her anymore. The sight before him shattered his very soul. What had they done to her? 
Carefully, he unhooked the IV, taking the needle out of her skin. He proceeded to uncuff her from the chair, picking up her fragile body in his arms. The only thing that let him know that she was awake was her indiscernible murmurs and her groans of pain every time he accidentally jostled her. He tucked her head in the crook of his neck, keeping her as close as humanly possible. She wasn’t going to leave his sight any time soon, that was for sure. 
He kept holding her on the ride to HQ. Iris’ distress was evident, so he gently smoothed her hair, humming words of comfort for her, kissing her forehead every so often. He had gotten her into a somewhat relaxed state when they arrived at their destination. He walked her to medical in his arms, refusing to put her down. Only when they got to a hospital bed did he put her down, ever so carefully. A doctor began to wave him out, but a hand shot out, grabbing onto him with surprising strength for someone so injured. 
“Please, please, Marcus,” her faint voice begged him. 
He looked into her heavily lidded eyes, seeing the pain and panic in them. He grabbed her hand, holding it in both of his, rubbing slow, soothing circles with his thumb. He sat in the chair next to her, staying by her side. If she wanted him here, there wasn’t a force in the world that could stop him from being there. 
Marcus watched all the medical personnel work diligently and quickly, trying to take care of their fellow doctor. At one point, they knocked her out so that she wouldn’t have to withstand the pain while they put her back together. They all warned Marcus that this healing process wouldn’t be pretty, that it would take time for her to get back to herself how she would need a support system in place while her body and mind healed. He didn’t know what their assumption was of him, but he was one of her closest friends, as far as he could tell. He would take care of her, no matter what it took for him to do so. 
She was out for over 24 hours, and Marcus was never far from his side. Missy and Jules spent time in her room, too, both somehow understanding that she was seriously hurt and that their daddy needed to be there for Iris. Missy would make her way to the doctor’s bed every thirty minutes or so, kissing her on the cheek, squeezing her hand, and asking her to please, please wake up soon, we miss you, Daddy misses you. From the mouths of babes, Marcus mused. 
He was thankful that HQ offered childcare and was also where Missy went to school. Staying by the doctor’s side didn’t disrupt their lives too much. He spent his time doing computer work, entertaining the kids quietly, and reading to his unconscious friend. 
In the cover of night, as he rocked baby Jules and gave her a bottle, he concluded that he loved Dr. Iris Johnson far more than as just a friend. The thought of losing her had put him in a panic, his stomach dropping. He didn’t know how to broach the subject; he was so out of practice. He would table that conversation for later. He needed to focus on her healing, first and foremost. He would find a time to eventually tell her how he felt and see how she felt about him. If she didn’t feel the same way, he would deal with it. All he knew was that he needed her in his life in some way, shape, or form, even it was as only his friend. 
A soft groan pulled him out of his thoughts. He looked up to see a beautiful pair of eyes staring back at him from a very awake Iris. She smiled weakly; it was all she could muster up. She blinked a few times before rasping out a “hi,” in a scratchy, disused voice. He used his free arm not filled with the baby to prop her up on the pillows, grabbing the water by her bed, helping her lift it to her lips, watching as she greedily gulped it down. 
“How long was I out?” 
He smiled at her, and it didn’t quite reach his eyes. “A little over 24 hours. The doctors knocked you out while they fixed you up, giving you time to heal a little bit. How are you feeling?”
She chucked a bit, wincing at the movement. “Like I’ve been tortured, which technically I have been. I- I want you to know that I didn’t tell them anything, not a word. The names, the tech, the information they wanted, I promise they didn’t get any of it from me. I wouldn’t say anything.”
Marcus squeezed her hand lightly, wordlessly telling her that he had never doubted her, not once. He sat there, holding her hand in silence for a while, letting her process everything in her own time. 
“I wanna go home. I don’t want to be in a hospital bed.” 
He frowned, biting his lip; he wasn’t exactly sure how much he should tell her right off the bat. “I think they want you here for a few more days to make sure that you stay hydrated and stable.” 
“I’m a doctor, and I know how to put in an IV for liquids, and if anything goes wrong, I can always come back here. It won’t, though; I know what I’m doing. I just want my bed, my own home to heal in.” 
“That- well, it might be a problem, honey. Your place was pretty ransacked when we came and started looking for you. It doesn’t look like the intruders took anything, but I think they were trying to see if you took anything home from work. You’re terrific about keeping everything here, though. There was nothing for them to find. HQ is having someone come and clean everything up so that you won’t be coming home to a mess when you can get outta here. You won’t have to worry about cleaning it up yourself. I have a bag packed for you full of stuff from your place, so at least you have some things.” 
Iris pursed her lips, her brow furrowed, she hated not being in control, and she certainly wasn’t in control right now. She was grasping at straws, attempting to find something, anything that could be within her control. 
“Well, if I can’t go home, I’ll check into a hotel. I am not staying here; it’s not necessary, and fuck Marcus, it’s making me antsy. Please get me outta here. I can’t be here anymore. I need out of this place.” 
He was conflicted, he wanted to give her what she wanted, but he wasn’t sure how to. He couldn’t let her go off and check into some hotel. That wasn’t safe. Someone needed to keep an eye on her and make sure that she didn’t get worse. Then, it clicked.
“Come home with me, honey. If you don’t want to be here, I’ll take you home with me. That way, someone can keep an eye on you, I’ll know you’re safe, and you won’t be in the medical wing anymore. It’s the smartest option, and I don’t mind; I just want you safe. Plus, Missy and Jules will be more than happy to have you around for a bit.” 
It had all come tumbling out before Marcus could stop himself. He knew that it was bold, that he was asking a lot of her, but it seemed like the perfect compromise. She had some independence while still being monitored by someone. If she were at his place, she would be safe. 
A grin broke out on her face for the first time since she had woken up. She was relieved, and she wasn’t about to fight her friend on his suggestion. If he were offering for her to stay for a bit, then she would take Marcus up on it. She knew she would be safe with him. 
The next few hours were full of arguments with doctors, packing everyone up in Marcus’ car, and heading home. Pulling up to the house, Marcus felt the tension slide off the woman next to him. She was ready to be anywhere but a medical building. He knew that doctors made the absolute worst patients, but she was living proof of that. He couldn’t blame her, though; how could he? She had been put through the wringer after all. 
Once he got in the house and Missy had hopped in his bed, he left Iris with the kids. She had insisted that he take a shower and change clothes, allowing him a moment to himself. He had tried to argue with her, but it was no use. She was feisty, willing to hold her ground with him. She reminded him that she knew her limits and would be fine getting the girls into their pj’s and getting herself into a spare t-shirt and boxers that Marcus had loaned her for sleep in. He made her promise not to strain herself too much and to yell for him if she needed anything. 
He groaned as the water hit his tired body, the warmth seeping into his bones. Fuck, sometimes he felt like his age was finally catching up to him. He was in great shape, to be sure, but he was almost 40, and the life he had chosen to lead took a toll on one’s body. As he washed his body, thoughts of the captivating woman in the room adjacent swirled through his mind. He could feel himself grow hard at the image of her plush lips, her eyes that bared her soul to him, the laugh that would ring out in times of joy that played behind his closed lids. He let out a broken moan as he gripped his length in his hand, slowly pumping himself. He hadn’t let himself relax in months, not since before the baby was born. He had so much pent up energy, just waiting to be expelled. 
He was already leaking, his tip red and angry, begging for release. He worked his hand faster, twisting it every so often, just how he liked it. He imagined Iris on her knees in the shower with him, his hand replaced by the thought of her mouth around him so warm and wanting for him. He almost came right then and there. He knew it wouldn’t be much longer, imaging her touch on him, her hand working what she couldn’t fit in her mouth, the other caressing his balls. He could almost feel her tongue circle around his tip, coming hard with a gasp. He rode out his pleasure, shivering at his touch on his sensitive length. Fuck, holy shit, he had come hard, proof of his orgasm covering his hand and stomach. He sighed, washing himself off. He felt better, less pent up. The exhaustion from the past few days began to creep in, telling him that it was time to get out. 
He dried off and redressed quickly, realizing that he had spent more time than intended in the shower, thanks to his little interlude. He threw on a soft shirt and boxers, not forgetting his glasses in the bathroom. He figured that he would get everyone situated and then crash on the couch or in the rocking chair in Jules’ room. He didn’t want to push anything on his guest. 
What he saw walking into his bedroom took his breath away. Iris was wearing his clothes, an IV bag full of fluids hanging from the headboard and attached to her arm. She was in the middle of the large bed, warm under the covers. What completely stopped him, though, was his two girls. Missy was curled up asleep against the doctor, an open children’s book balanced between them, abandoned. Jules was snoozing with her binky and her stuffie in Iris’ other arm, her tiny fingers holding onto her second favorite person. A few tears ran down his face at the sight of his three girls all curled up peacefully together, lost in slumber. He took his phone out, snapping a picture so that he would have the visual with him always. 
Without waking Jules, he took her and placed the baby in the bassinet by the bed. The movement caused Iris to open her eyes, blinking blearily at him. She reached out, patting the space next to her, trying to get him to climb into bed with them. He didn’t hesitate, nodding as he took off his glasses and turned off the lights. 
Cradling her in his arms, along with Missy, he sunk into the mattress. One of his last thoughts was that she fit perfectly with his little family. He never wanted her to leave. Fortunately for him, she never did. After staying for that first night, she never went back to her apartment.    
Tags: @autumnleaves1991-blog  @hdlynnslibrary @frannyzooey @jollyrancher87 @cyaredindjarin​ @dindjarindiaries​ @madness-roses​ @softpedropascal​ @flightlessangelwings​ @bisexual-space-slut​ @takemepedropascal​ @pascalispunkie​ @revolution-starter​ @mrschiltoncat​ @maybege​ 
Let me know if you’d like on or off of the tags list xo
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some-dr-writings · 11 months ago
Kokichi, Rantaro, and Shuichi x SHSL Military General Reader
Kokichi Oma:
·       The Super High School Level Military General, that title sounded to be a mere invitation for a challenge to Kokichi. The moment he heard of you, your reputation of being so cold and distant, more stoic and silent than even stone, he knew you were his next target. He was determined to get you to crack that façade somehow!
·       There was just one problem.
·       No matter what he pulled you always either didn’t react, or effortlessly avoided it. You had to have some weakness. He just needed to snuff it out! And so that was how Kokichi began to follow you. The moment you exited class he’d be there to greet you at the door with some prank, after which he’d momentarily complain about how you were emotionless in a joking tone before hugging your arm talking nonstop about anything and everything that slipped through his mind. Not once did you ever utter a word or make a sound during these encounters.
·       One day after class you sat in the library, studying for an upcoming test. “Ugh, Y/N, this is soooo boring. We don’t even need to study at this school, just improve our talents. What are you dooooing?” You simply jotted down some notes before flipping to the next page in the textbook. Groaning he took out a drawing pad and crayons and started scribbling on it. Loudly humming he worked away, even when in the corner of his eye he saw how you had closed your text book, daintily placing the book onto your lap, your hands properly held atop one another on the cover of the book. “… Give Tojo Kirumi a task in the gym.” “Ah HAH! You do speak!” You stared at him, standing on the table, pointing, his finger touching the tip of your nose. “… Tomorrow is Tuesday. Normally she’d be doing laundry by eight, but yesterday Yasuhiro Taeke, more commonly known as Ludenberg Celestia, will be hosting a card gaming tournament at the behest of the principle since a well renowned group of talent agents will be coming here. Tojo Kirumi will be asked to assist with setting up the hall. In order to get as many of your targets as possible give her a request immediately before nine. That will lead both Yasuhiro Taeke and the talent agents to the sight of your prank and keep Tojo Kirumi from intervening and cleaning up the aftermath too soon after your prank is ignited.” So, a peak into the mind of the SHSL Military General.
·       Since that day you would occasionally speak to Kokichi, it was always abrupt and short, but it was always to assist in his scheming and nothing else.
·       Eventually Kokichi got bored following you, saying it wasn’t fair that you two only ever did what you wanted so he’d begin to drag you around. You never resisted, not even once. Kokichi didn’t think much of this, just that you likely went along since it was the better option than fighting against it.
·       Then he realized that was not the case.
·       You and he were meandering around the school festival, Kokichi making fun of the sad horror house effects much to Korekiyo’s chagrin. It was then one of the students from your class told you things had gone array at your booth, and they needed your help. They were about to take your hand and lead you there when you jerked your hand away, a harsh snap sound cracking the air. You look down at them with a cold steelie gaze and in an intimidating, confident voice you said “No.” Then you began to walk away at a brisk pack. “Come now, I know you can keep up.” And that same tone immediately got your classmate to walk in time with you, in your exact stride too. Not long later you returned to the haunted house where Kokichi still was. “Y/A What was that all about? Wait! Hey, hey! That’s your weakness, isn’t it! Tell me, tell me. It’s your weakness! Come on! Just admit it!” You didn’t do a thing for a moment before taking his hand. “Letting one of my soldiers lead the way would be a sign of weakness. The same however can not be stated about the closest thing I have to a friendship with another.” “… Aw~ You think of me as a friend? That’s so sweet!” … closest thing you had to friendship… What exactly was your life like before entering Hope’s Peak, he wondered. He had some guesses… Likely awfully lonely. But that’s exactly why he’s here. Kokichi is a clown, and he was determined still to get a reaction out of you.
·       It was strange. For the longest time he thought your stoicism was a façade, but truthfully that was just how you were. It just made the moments when he did get a reaction all the more special and mesmerizing. He wanted to be there to see each and every one of your little reactions. “Hey, Y/N!” He let go of your hand, spinning around and stopping before you. “Want to go out with me?”
·       You blushed.
·       Your eyes slightly widened, your posture laxed and your hands held the hem of your shirt. “I… l-like a date?” “Nishishi.” Your blush swiftly spread to the tips of your ears as Kokichi took your hands into his own. “Heh, who knew. Honesty is your weakness.” Suddenly he started skipping away, still holding one of your hands. “For a liar like me, this might be difficult but, if being honest with my feelings plucks at your heart strings, I guess I have no choice.” Seemingly out of nowhere Kokichi had a megaphone in hand and held it up to himself before taking a deep breath. “HEY WORLD! I’M IN LOVE WITH Y/N!” “Ah, O-Oma! I- uh Yes? I’d like to go out, b-but…” You covered your face with both of your hands, too embarrassed and loving how Kokichi smiled, continuing to announce his love for you to the world.
·       Equal opposites yet exactly the same you and Kokichi seemed to be a reflection of one another. You almost unemotive and Kokichi very emotive. Both of you were fantastic leaders always trying to manipulate the world as to protect your own even if it meant manipulating them too. As the Ultimate Supreme Leader and Ultimate Military General, nothing could stand in your way. You could own the whole world if you wished. Luckily for the world, all you wanted was for all you cared about to be safe and happy. Safe under both of your watchful eyes and happy at the silly shenanigans you’d plan out for your own but mostly other’s amusement. After all the fighting you had been through it was therapeutic to use your skills outside of fighting and perhaps… that was Kokichi’s goal the whole time. Maybe, for as smart and clever as you were, you were outmatched by the emotionally intelligent Kokichi. Whatever his true intentions he had for approaching you that even he possibly didn’t know, you were still together and something you were forced to accept as a Military general is that sometimes it matters not how you reach a goal, just the end result and though that thought often weighed heavily upon you, maybe just this once, a single clown had helped you lift up and carry that burden, even changing it to something lighter. Something with no blood, just tomfoolery. And… after all you had been though, it was like a dream to have it be this way.
   Rantaro Amami:
·       The pair of you had met only once before joining Hope’s Peak. Rantaro had stumbled upon a training camp you were temporarily heading. Impressed he was even able to make it there since it was near impossible to get through those snowy ranges without a helicopter or some way to just skip over manually trekking through the dangerous terrain, you allowed him to rest for the night after thoroughly checking he didn’t have anything dangerous or was a spy that is. Promptly the moment the sun rose you kicked him out, but he was still appreciative you let him stay at all. So when he saw you at the entrance ceremony he took the opportunity to thank you since you never gave him the chance to back then.
·       Since that day whenever Rantaro was at school and not traveling he’d make sure to spend time with you. You never spoke much mostly keeping to yourself or intervening into our class’ affairs should a leader be helpful, even so Rantaro would still chat with you. That was actually something he quite liked about you. The few times you did speak, there was always purpose and power behind it. No matter what was happening, even if you quietly muttered a single short word, you’d instantly garner the attention of all those around you and even if they were preoccupied with something else, you did not need to repeat your words, for they already knew what they were.
·       Others always though the two of you to be a strange pair. You were strict and up tight while Rantaro was more relaxed and laid back. Seemingly opposites, yet you did have a common thread. Nurturing. Rantaro, often his big brother instincts would kick in and he’d comfort and help just about anyone, even if he wasn’t all to great at the task at hand. You on the other hand always push those around you to their limit, motivating them to work as hard as they could independently while still being good team players. Rantaro more so focused on being the emotional side or being the rock others could lean on while you were their leader, assisting them in finding the best plan of attack that was most efficient but least costly on materials whether it be monetary or their health, you took all that into consideration as costs. A mentally damaged soldier can’t properly fight with their everything after all.
·       Sometimes when Rantaro was planning his next trip away from school you’d join him. “If you cut through the mountains, you’d have a direct path to the town.” “Well… Yeah, but I don’t know. There’s supposed to be wolves there.” “You said the town you’re coming from is known for fishing.” “Yeah.” “Surely one of them would have a boat or shipping route you can hitch a ride on. There’s a large river that cuts through the mountains, unless there’s white rapids I’m sure someone uses it for transport. If not, with your persuasion skills I’m sure you can convince someone to do so.” “Persuasion skills? I don’t know about that, but thanks.” You looked to him with that icy glare, one that would make most anyone flinch, but not Rantaro. His regular demeanor was just so calm and relaxed he was one of the few people who was unaffected by it. “Never doubt yourself. Hesitating for a moment will get you killed.” Rantaro simply smiled with his eyes closed, patting you on the head. “Okay, I won’t. Thank you.” “ah!... don’t, don’t patronize me. We’re friends, don’t treat me of a lower station, we’re equals.” “Huh?” He looked to you in confusion. There was still power in your voice, but did it waver? Your cheeks and tips of your ears were dusted with a bright pink. He retracted his hand. “Sorry, I wasn’t doing that. I forgot you don’t like touch. It’s a habit I guess.” “… Please refrain from doing so in the future. It’s common practice to treat a child in such a way. Not to say children are lower than us, but most often with head pats and that sickeningly sweet tone you took is used for looking down on those younger, those one sees as beneath them… Children are not given enough respect.” “Oh? I don’t look down on my little sisters.” The blush on you face kept darkening as you made unwavering eye contact with Rantaro trying to not show just how flustered you were becoming. “Well, I, I mean… Often people only treat others they see as lower like that, and, I…” You then abruptly stood up. “I need a moment to collect my thoughts.” You then ran off wondering what the hell you were even doing. Meanwhile Rantaro simply smiled watching you as you left. “Cute.”
·       As Rantaro thought about it, he did appreciate what you were trying to say. He knew how highly you treated respect, and you give that to children as well… Perhaps you’d be a good person to be around his sisters.
·       For all of Rantaro’s life he had always gone with the flow, so it was not surprising that the same happened when getting together with you. Neither of you ever confessed, you just knew you were together and that was that.
·       On occasion you’d go with Rantaro on his trips. Though he never had much luck before, Rantaro felt that with you by his side, perhaps he could find his sisters again. With a person as strong and smart and dedicated as you, he was sure you’d come up with some ingenious plan to find them all. If anyone could do it, it would be you. These trips, when these thoughts appeared, it reminded him of all the reasons why he fell for you, how kind and caring you were under that cold exterior. You just always wanted the best for others so should you be separated, you didn’t have to worry about them, because you knew you trained them well to be independent and a team player when needed. You were the best partner he never could have even dreamed of and with you by his side, he felt that just maybe anything was possible.
   Shuichi Saihara:
·       Shuichi was introduced to you through Kaito. Kaito acted like you and he were the best of friends, but you seemed to be so distant. “Kaito… Are you sure you’re friends?” “Huh? What do you mean, Shuichi? Of course we’re friend’s, just look at how happy they are to be here with me!” You did not even take a glance at him as he draped his arm across your shoulders, pulling you closer, he so brightly smiling. “They’re like Akamatsu and me, a great leader! I actually brought them here to see if they’d take you on as a sidekick as well!” “Soldier.” Shuichi’s breath got caught in his throat hearing that quiet, yet powerful voice. “Yeah, soldier, sidekick, they’re the same for you.”
·       Not long after you ended up joining he, Maki and Kaito for their training in the evenings. As the SHSL Military general, he thought it was going to be hell, but… it was not? You gave Maki, Kaito and Shuichi different amounts of push-ups or whatever exercise they had decided to do. Every one of you were pushed to your limit. You’d correct them on their form, but more so, you’d encourage them, saying you knew they could do better and asking that they not disappoint you, which was surprisingly motivating. Though he hadn’t known you for long, he didn’t want to let you down, something about you made him want to do better. Perhaps it was that commanding tone that made him feel he had too or how you were working out with all of them, not taking a break or slowing your impossibly fast pace till everyone was done. Whatever it was, some part of Shuichi wanted to make you proud of him as odd as that may sound.
·       You also ended up following Shuichi around. Nothing stalker like. You’d just sit by one another in the library or at lunch. Being more introverted, Shuichi actually rather liked this. Neither of you had to speak much but your friendship still blossomed.
·       One day you spoke up. “Shuichi, are you free after school?” “Yeah, I am.” “I’ll meet you at your classroom then.” And you just left. Indeed, when Shuichi left his classroom you were there waiting for him by the door. Locking eyes for a brief moment you began to walk away, and he followed. You lead him out of the school, down streets and alleyways till you arrived at a small building.
·       Once inside you were immediately greeted happily by men and women. “Hey, General, who’s this kid. A new friend of yours?” “Yes. A childhood friend of mine introduced us and I was asked to take him under my wing. I believe this place may be useful to him. I’ll be heading to my therapy session now.” With that said you walked up the stairs and left Shuichi behind. “Uh, therapy? What is this place?” It looked to be a large cozy house. There were not too many people about ten or so but most were of different ethnicities or were injured in some way. One of the people sitting at a table eating baked treats approached Shuichi. “A drop-in center. A place for us retired soldiers to gather and… just talk with others with similar experiences. You don’t seem like the Ultimate fighter or anything so a civilian like you must have been through something rough. Come, let’s share some snacks till the General gets back.”
·       And there Shuichi was told many a story of the battlefield, stories of you, how you always tried to take as little life while still being realistic. How you’d push everyone to the breaking point but also be tender. War is not kind but that didn’t mean you couldn’t be. “So… what about you?” “Eh- Me?” “Yes, Shuichi. You feel up to sharing your experiences?” “I… I can’t. My problems must sound so trivial compared to what you’ve been through.” “Enough! You never fought in a war but that doesn’t make your pain any less real.” “Exactly. This is a safe space to share any troubles, but if you don’t want too you don’t have to. I know it sure took me a while before I shared any of my stories.” “Well…” And Shuichi told them. About how he got his title, about the look the killer gave him, the guilt he carried on his shoulders, the fear of finding the truth only to cause more pain. And… everyone was so supportive. Some even saying that in some ways they weren’t sure they could deal with what Shuichi had gone through and fighting seemed easier to them. It seemed so surreal to Shuichi. So surreal in fact he didn’t notice you came back down those steps, briefly smiling before sitting in a corner to do your homework.
·       It was around dinner time that Shuichi had noticed you and realized how late it had gotten. You both quickly left, not wanting to miss out on Teruteru’s delicious cooking. About a block away from the building, you spoke up. “I go there just about everyday after school. Even if I don’t go, you’re welcome. A drop-in center is for everyone, not just soldiers of war.” Shuichi knew what you were getting at and accepted your offer. It was nice and quiet there. There were different regulars for each day, so conversation never got stale and… it was just so pleasant.
·       Eventually after you and Shuichi started going out you were occasionally teased at the Drop-in center, but it was always lighthearted. Some even shared stories of their spouses or past romances.
·       With Shuichi’s life seemingly being a rollercoaster, always so fast, loud and busy, he loved being with you. You were able to help him clear his mind. You were one of the few truly stable things in his life. No matter what happened he could always seek your guidance and you’d help to an extent but make sure Shuichi did most of the leg work. And you… truthfully you could say the exact same about Shuichi. He still needed to gain confidence, and independence, but you knew that you could rely on him. Should all the spilled blood seem overbearing, Shuichi would help you out of that dark place. You relied on him just as much as he relied on you. You were truly equal partners and neither of you could want for more from a partner.
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burnedbyshoto · a year ago
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“Aphrodite is just a stage name, but the persona is still you. You might be a total dork, but the person you think you present has always been apart of you.”
— Or, in which Pro Hero Shouto falls in love with a dominatrix cam girl, only to find out that she’s quite a weirdo in real life. — 
pairing: todoroki shouto x fem!reader
warnings: 18+, smut, fluff, stalking fan, cursing, unexperienced shouto, camgirl!reader, dom!reader, marking, blowjobs, praise kink
word count: 8,834
a/n: honestly, I did love this fic but mind is BUZZING at the thought of finally getting to write my todoroki family gangbang because I have that shit fucking outlined and I never outline anYTHING!!! but this was fun!!! i did a lot of extensive research into camming to only realize that if I wrote it realistically I wouldn’t be able to write this the way I intended... so camgirl is sorta really inaccurate and im sorry ;-;
Being a Pro Hero was one of the most rewarding things Todoroki Shouto had ever done. With his day consumed with being in an element where he saved and protected people, there was nothing he could ever hope to improve. Well, as long as you only considered things in a job aspect.
As a Pro Hero, his job was his life.
Day in and day out, he was working. 
From the first chime of his alarm at six in the morning until he was crashing on his bed at eleven at night, he wasn’t just anyone, he was Shouto, the Pro Hero.
But Heroes were overworked, with the recent downfall of the League of Villains and the aftershocks that came from defeating a group that changed the world, there was a lot to do. He was twenty years old, two years free from Yuuei, and was a Pro Hero, not a sidekick.
After graduating from school, most individuals had assumed that he was going to work with his father as a sidekick for a few number of years, but that wasn’t right. Bakugou and Midoriya had created an agency together, so with them, the creators, Shouto made up one of the many founding members of this new agency. An agency that was constructed of only graduates of Yuuei,  it was strong, promising, and already one that had him and his friends well within the publics’ favorite heroes.
As goes any new Hero Agency, they had to prove themselves, after all, their alma mater was not enough to carry them through everything. Experience was valued higher than name-value after all. So Shouto, along with the thirty members of the agency, worked hard every day to swallow the fear of the reemerging Japan, fulfilling every and all tedious and significant need.
But for all his hard work, Shouto had been neglecting his own needs.
Two years of hard work for a man without a sexual relationship translated to two years without any sort of lover — romantic and sexual.
At first, it was easy to ignore. He made do with sloppy jerk offs in the shower, the warm water soaking into his skin while he came in loads against his fingers, but eventually, it grew tiresome, lonesome, and tedious. 
That is until something happened one day.
A single link had been sent his way by Kaminari, the blond man unknowingly sending this to Shouto and not the intended Sero. Shouto had just gotten home, his tired eyes looking at the highlighted hyperlink on his phone. Sighing, he had thrown it up on his laptop, wanting to figure out just what he was sending him of all people, he hoped maybe it was an article on his major rescue today. Kaminari was much better at tracking those articles than he was.
But what he got was not an article on his heroic deed today. No, there was no cold day in hell that this was a news article.
His eyes widened, the texts furiously coming in on his phone, apologizing for the mistake, but Shouto wasn’t paying attention. No, he was transfixed on the video before him and fire, unlike any heat he had ever known burned through his veins. Simmering heat rolling from his skin while he watched on, and just like that, Shouto found a way to feel anew.
“Thanks for all your hard work!” Midoriya yelled after Shouto, who was three strides out the door once they traded places. 
It was Tuesday night, one of three nights that Shouto ever really looked forward to. For the past year, he had always made sure that he was never scheduled on these nights, and well, no one had objected, so he was still taking them. The travel back home was a five-minute commute via train, but always, as Shouto sat there, he felt as if the train was barely inching along.
But as soon as the train docked, there was no time to waste. Shouto was out of the crowded train and practically racing to his house. 
The door was slammed and locked behind him, and while practically stripping in his hallway — he didn’t need to care about a trail of clothes as he lived alone — he made it into his bedroom.
7:59, his clock read, and he cursed, moving even faster to set himself up.
Shouto couldn’t help but feel the burning embers of shame igniting in his chest, his heart rate soaring to the sky, when he clicked the join button. This was utterly shameful… twenty-one years old and he was in love… he was infatuated with someone he couldn’t have.
The screen darkened for the room he was looking into was dark, nothing but fuzzy pixels where you sat on the bed, legs crossed, and a sly grin on your face.
“Hi, love,” you coo. Shouto couldn’t make you out exactly right now, but on god, he already knows your lips were painted a deep red that always captivated him, your eyes insanely large with the thick and long strand of eyelashes you wore.
He wants to say good, he wants nothing more than to respond to your greeting, but he’s speechless. Besides, he knows you wouldn’t be able to hear him anyway.
“Now, now, don’t be shy,” you pout, standing up and nearing the camera, your strides were slow, smooth, terribly seductive and Shouto was taking you all in.
However, Shouto’s heart stops when your figure becomes more distinct. Red leather lingerie and toys strapped to the iconic utility belt you don. Even in the alluring lighting of your room, Shouto can see that your eyes are dark with amusement, glee, and lust. He groans lightly, the fabric of his boxer briefs tightening when you lean in close.
“I want to hear you cry my name…”
Shouto splutters at the whisper, feeling submerged into your show despite his brain telling him you didn’t know him. Regardless, his finger trails the trackpad and clicks the blue ‘donation’ button, the amount put at the full maximum the site would allow.
“Aw, thank you for the donation icy-hot,” you purr, your eyes fluttering on the camera, almost as if you were looking right at him. And Shouto delights at the sound of his username dripping like honey from your tongue. “I knew your slutty needy cock wouldn’t disappoint me. I wonder if you’re already touching yourself at the thought of me…” he watches your pretty red lips stretch from a pout into a Cheshire grin, and a pleasurable wave encases his body, his cock twitching against his restraint. “I hope you’re not, after all, I haven’t given you permission yet, have I?”
Shouto exhales shakily, the sultry confidence in your face, tone, and stature overwhelming him.
He watches your eyes fall to where he knows the chat is located on your screen, and the bell-like giggle swims in his mind while you amuse the many different viewers on this chat.
Aphrodite, that’s what you went by. 
The goddess of love, beauty, procreation, and pleasure.
With the way your eyes pierced the camera, legs spread open to reveal your cunt for your viewers, Shouto hissed in need for him to grab his cock, he knew better by now.
“Don’t you wish you were here so I could ride your small cocks instead of my fingers,” you sigh, and Shouto wets his lips, fingers that ached to give attention to his pulsing cock digging into his thighs. “If you want me to let you touch yourself,” you sigh, tossing your head back, your eyes glinted with power and coercion in this position. “Throw in a little donation for your goddess, whores~!”
It pained Shouto to admit it, but he had a sincere and deep attraction for the girl behind Aphrodite. He didn’t need to check his bank account to know that outside of his daily things, the thing that he was freely spending money on was your shows. The more people donate, the more you would do, the more dominating, demeaning, and almost sadistic you would get. Most nights, like last night, Shouto would collapse on his bed. His cock a flush red from the aggressive fisting he had done, a desperate attempt to make himself pretend it was your tight and sopping cunt around his cock and not his heated hands. The room was always foggy, steam pouring from his skin because his control still went up to smoke whenever he watched you on the screen.
There was nothing more to say except that he would do everything in his power to make sure you were gaining enough money from these shows, and that his screen name would drip past your lips every show. Even if you would never do private shows, he would make sure you knew who he was.
But this wasn’t the time to think about you.
“Todoroki!” Bakugou yelled from a distance, and Shouto looked up to see Bakugou staring at him, his face set in annoyance. “Ponytail has a job for you.”
Shouto had just walked in through the door to the agency, but his lips pulled into a slight smile. His head nodding, “Okay.”
In the agency Momo, Iida, and Midoriya were the ones who were best suited at handing out missions and assignments. With Iida on temporary leave as he was on vacation with his family and Midoriya, who was on a week assignment with Bakugou, there was only Momo to hand intensive things out right now. 
Saying his good mornings to the people he passed, he eventually made it into the back room with the door closing behind him. He made eye contact immediately with Momo, who seemed to be jabbering with the client, but he knew her well enough to see that under the cheerful personality, there was something worried in her gaze.
“You wanted to see me?” Shouto asked the second he stepped in.
“Ah, yes, Todoroki-san!” Momo nodded her head, the smile on her face remaining keen on her face while she gestured to the person before her. “This is y/l/n y/n!”
Nodding, he looked down at the client and stiffened only slightly when you turned around.
Y/l/n… y/n… you were Aphrodite.
Shouto’s mouth went dry but also began salivating at an extremely high rate the second your lips pulled into a greeting smile. Was this real?
Would you be dominating in public? Your dominatrix bleeding into your personality outside of the screen? Would you rise to his eye level when you finally stood? He always imagined you would. Were you wearing something flirty, cute, or alluring underneath that jacket you had on your body? Your make up was done in the same matter as the shows, but the red lipstick he loved was substituted with a natural lip color, brightening the shimmer in your eyes. 
“It’s nice to meet you,” you greeted, and Shouto nodded dumbly, words failing him entirely at this moment.
Was that what he expected you to say as a greeting? Well, he guessed you saying something along the lines of ‘welcome you dirty fucking slut’ was a bit out of the picture considering they were in public and you didn’t know him. But still, a part of him craved to have heard that utter from your lips, because there would have been no stopping the way that he would have sank to his knees for you.
“Y/l/n-san is here with us because she’s been a victim of a past B&E’s,” Momo’s voice pierces through Shouto’s thoughts, and he breaks his stare on your — sweetly? — smiling face to look at his friend. “We also have reason to believe that such offenses are because she also has a stalker.”
“A stalker?” Shouto repeated Momo’s words.
“That is correct, and said stalker seems to be in possession of a strong quirk,” Momo nodded her head, her face still kind for you, but her eyes calculating and sharp. “I’m assigning you on her case for a few reasons, firstly because you are capable of handling the perpetrator, and two, you live a block from her apartment, so defending her will be accessible to you.”
Shouto’s stomach jumped at those words, all this time you had been a mere block away from him?! 
“Isn’t that a bit too much?” you laugh, rubbing the back of your neck. Shouto blinks, that was a move most people made when they weren’t confident… you were always confident. “I mean, yeah, I don’t want to be like… hurt by this man, but there’s no way he’d do anything bad, right?”
“Are you serious?” Shouto asked, his voice leaking with his evident discontent to your answer.
Momo, however, redirected your attention back to her by grabbing your hands in hers, “There’s a possibility that there’s nothing bad that he’ll do, but that’s not something we wish to risk.”
“I have pepper spray, a stun gun, and a strong uppercut; I think I can handle this,” you say, pulling your keys up, showcasing the arrange of weapons you carried casually around you. 
“The pepper spray looks like you haven’t used it in ages,” Shouto immediately pointed out. “You need to use it about once a month to ensure it works.”
“Wait, really?!”
Momo giggled, watching in the way that Shouto looked down at you with a raised eyebrow, and how you looked up at him with wide eyes. “I can understand that you believe that you’re confident in your ability to take care of yourself! We aren’t trying to imply that you couldn’t, but your cousin brought you here or a reason! It’s easier to let us do our job, to make sure that you don’t ever have to put into a trying situation.”
Your bottom lip juts out into a small pout, but ultimately you sighed, nodding. “Okay… how long would this take, do you think? It’s just that I can’t have Shouto by my side at every instance of the day.”
Momo’s eyebrows quirked into a questioning stare, and Shouto could feel his body temperature rising at those words.
“Oh? How come?”
You still, as if you hadn’t expected Momo to further question why you didn’t want to be watched at all hours of the day. Loudly you splutter, unable to come up with an excuse through your panicked and while Shouto watched and listened with crumbling hope that your dominatrix personality was something that you held in every aspect in life. Your cries that you were an up and coming YouTuber — which explained the stalker — and needed to film your muckbang videos in peace made Shouto realize that you were not some sexy, confident woman at every instance of the day. No, you were awkward, weird, and dorky, but it still did nothing to calm his hammering heart when you stood up at the end of the meeting, clad in something that had to be pulled from the Lisa Frank collection and you hurried out.
“If I analyzed all of her police reports correctly, the stalker should be back by next week, falling on either Tuesday, Thursday, or Saturday night,” Momo informed Shouto, passing the case folder his way. “Take care of y/l/n-san, and be safe.”
Shouto nodded; that was something he didn’t need to be told twice, “Of course.”
You were a camgirl.
For most of your life, you had been someone who was overlooked by most. Being quirkless in a world where having a quirk, even the most useless quirks, was needed to gain success in your peer’s eyes truly sucked. It hadn’t stopped you from being successful, of course, you had worked hard in every aspect of your life, but it kept you from attaining your dream job because having a quirk was essential for it — even though you didn’t need one.
So with a minimum wage job to cover the costs of living and your long journey to prove your worth to get your dream job, you were quick to realize that you needed more money.
And one day, after a long day at failing to find a second job, you were in bed, reading over fanfics to distract yourself from a failed day when a particular story caught your eye. 
A story about a camgirl, and then it hit you.
You could be a camgirl!
It took a month of planning, nights spent on creating a persona, a person for you to become when the camera went on. 
You would turn into Aphrodite.
With such a stage name, you knew that you had to become the goddess of love herself. Your personality was quirky and dorky in real life when you only had to be you, but Aphrodite was all leather, lacy, skimpy hotness. She was daunting, commanding, dominating. It was almost as if the second you turned on your Livestream, the goddess herself possessed your body, turning you into someone that you could only dream to be.
You performed three times a week, precisely at nine and end sometimes even at two in the morning. Within a matter of ten streams, you had exploded in viewers and donors. You had been making around five hundred thousand yen a month, that is until your most special viewer icy-hot had made his first appearance. 
Icy-hot was someone who seemed to have a deep interest in you, and even deeper pockets because he alone doubled the price of your average income from camming. You were obsessed with him.
There was also another reason why you were obsessed, and it might have a little bit to do with the tall man walking behind you, just far away to make you comfortable, but close enough to keep you from harm’s way. Oh yes, in a world of celebrity crushes, you were in love with Pro Hero Shouto. 
It was stupid really, but as a fifteen-year-old girl watching Yuuei students who were your age beating the shit out of each other left an imprint of his then fifteen-year-old abs in your brain and you were hooked. Your crush was always shallow, of course it was, you didn’t know him, but he still provided you with a sense of comfort. The fact that he had lived so close to you for so long sent embarrassing flames to your face, how would he ever react to knowing that you needed time away from him so that you could control people into fucking themselves online? Or about how your stalker was a possessive man who watched your streams?
You had been fine with just informing the police, but apparently, the man had been apprehended before and had his quirk registered. He was dangerous, and with you being quirkless and the cops being unable to use their own quirks, your cousin dragged you to the local hero agency, proclaimed you needed help, and left.
Little did you remember that this was the hero agency that a lot of recent Yuuei alumni were at, and of course, the one that Shouto worked at. Heroes latched at your side, worried for you while taking you to the back to talk to the Everything Hero: Creati. With the police files on her computer, the two of you discussed everything that was happening with ease and sharp detail, and then Ground Zero barged through the door, yelling about something Deku was doing.
Creati talked with him, both of them coming to some understanding and a simple line from her mouth, effectively ending your entire life.
“Will you call in Todoroki-san when he gets here?”
It wasn’t that you were dressed ugly or wrong, but you were definitely dressed up in bright colors because you were trying a Lisa Frank aesthetic before your cousin dragged you off. Tugging at the ends of your hair, you looked back at Shouto, who was silent, his eyes looking at you.
“Are you okay?” he asks, his buttery voice soothes down your spine, and you threw a large thump up in his direction with a nod.
“Never been better!” you lie. This was bad this was so very bad, you wanted to push him into an alleyway and run away, why must the world curse you into looking like you were related to booboo the fool on the day you finally crossed paths with Shouto. Not to mention should he find out about your career? Would he think you deserved everything coming your way?
“It’s okay to be not okay,” he spoke up, his head tilting to the side, trying to figure out where your thoughts are. “You know that, right? You’re going through a lot right now.”
You blow a raspberry, your ears burning when you look back in front of you, your head shaking. “I’m perfectly fine, I wasn’t even in immediate danger! Besides, I have you here now, don’t I?”
They were familiar words heroes heard every day, maybe not those words exactly but similar enough that they weren’t unusual. But still, to Shouto, those words curled warmly in his chest, vibrating deep within his sternum while he nodded.
“You do.”
To say the least, Shouto was genuinely shocked to figure out who you were as a person. 
The biggest thing he could put together about you, the most essential detail he saw was the fact that you were stupidly a dork. You had just about one hundred colorful mugs with weirdly dumb inspirational quotes on them. Whenever he showed up at your apartment in the morning — the nights you insisted he couldn’t sleep on your couch because of your recordings, which worked out because he would just go home and watch your stream with only the slightest guilty conscious.
You had a colorful arrange of sweaters and shirts, none of which were anything that he would have assumed initially you would wear, to begin with. Leggings and sweaters, joggers and tank tops, that seemed to be your style in the warming days of spring, and he was all for it.
With nothing more to do with this assignment, then stay close to you because the police where in charge of trying to find the man, the two of you grew close. Shouto often amused himself by asking you about the videos you were making for ‘YouTube,’ each time you came out with a poorly failed excuse of a lie for him, and every time you believed that he believed you.
It was a month into the assignment, and nothing had happened so far, nothing but late-night conversations and late-night cam sessions. Still, Shouto was a devoted watcher, and with each passing day, his ears no longer blushed scarlet at the sight of you the following mornings. 
The two of you were proper fans, and the crushes you had for each other still held true, only now reenforced with the appropriate images of each other.
“You have to go now!” you complain, trying to shove the much larger man out of your apartment’s front door. It was Thursday evening, and with only an hour until you were to stream — an accident on both of your parts because you had been distracted with watching an anime with him — you needed to get ready quickly. “Shouto, oh my god, I swear if you don’t leave, I’m going to pepper spray you!”
Shouto was pretending to be lost in thought, his body stable and unshifting while you attempted your hardest to get him to move. “I don’t remember you ever cleaning your pepper spray… it’ll end up hurting you more than me in the end anyway.”
“You don’t know that!” you grunt, your hands pressing against his spine, your feet slipping against the wood while you push with all your strength. “Even if it hits me, it’ll hit you too!”
“I’ve been pepper-sprayed before, apart of hero training, I can handle it, y/n,” Shouto points, and he finally takes a step forward, your body stumbling into his side where he graciously steadied you. There’s a silence between the two of you when he realizes just how he caught you, and you feel the temperature fluctuate around you when he pushes you to your feet, throwing on his shoes and leaving with a stiff wave.
“See you t-tomorrow!” he rushes out, leaving you with a burning face in your doorway. 
But as you closed the door, rushing yourself to get ready for tonight, you didn’t get to see the way that Shouto stopped at the staircase, his eyebrows scrunching when an uneasy feeling filled his gut. Could it be that the perp was finally going to make their move tonight?
In thirty minutes you had managed to get your makeup done, the sharp black eyeliner paired with large full eyelashes, your skin perfect from foundation and contour, and of course, the painted red lip. With only ten minutes to spare, you threw your camera set together, connecting it at eight minutes to spare. You sweat in nerves while you hastily threw on your lingerie. Black lacy panties that sculpted your ass, and a bra that left your breasts looking delectable. Then the leather garter belt hung around your waist, attaching to your thigh high stockings with a cute red bow. 
With the countdown on the screen, you flopped on the bed, cameras rolling as soon as your clock read 9:00.
“Hi, love,” you began as you usually do, confidence flooding your person while you sat up from your mattress, your hands smoothly gliding against the soft fabric of the comforter. 
Your show went as it normally did, harmless flirting with your viewers who craved more, thanking donator after donator, your smile growing into a smirk with each passing minute. You noticed that icy-hot was on, his avatar always pinned to your screen when he joined, but he was silent. Not a single donation.
Normally this would scare you, drilling ice-cold anxiety through your veins, but you weren’t you right now; you were Aphrodite. 
“Icy-hot,” you drawled, your voice husky and low, a subtle show to your dominance while you leaned forward, your cleavage only accentuating between your pressing arms. “What are you doing?”
But before you could continue on, before you could utter more phrases to get some sort of response from your favorite viewer, there was a rustle in your apartment. You froze immediately, was Shouto in your place? No, that couldn’t make sense.
Then in an almost slow-motion horror, you watched your bedroom door slam open, and a man you didn’t recognize appeared before you. His transfixed on you as if you were a true goddess, his muscles taut, lips perked into a lusting smirk.
“I finally found you, Aphrodite,” he whispered like a prayer, his feet taking several fast strides in your direction, and as the chat exploded in their confusion, your jaw dropped in an ear-splitting scream.
>> ‘Is this for real?’
>> ‘Is aphrodite finally fucking a man for us? I’m jealous it’s not me!’
>> ‘Holy shit, I think this is real?!’
The facade of Aphrodite was gone on you, no longer possessing you, but instead the meek and weird you. There was no stopping his conquering pace when his hand outstretched for you until he was frozen in place.
“Shouto?!” you squeak, looking to see your hero standing at the door, his cheeks flushed from most likely rushing over, his eyes deadly and severe. His eyes glanced you over, and embarrassment shrouded you when he eyed over your lingerie, but he said nothing of your state of appearance thankfully.
“Go into your bathroom, and don’t come out until I tell you it’s over,” Shouto commanded, and breathlessly you nodded, stumbling over into the bathroom as the perpetrator broke free from the ice. One lustful eye turning sinister and dark, and with an animalistic bellow, he charged Shouto when you closed the door.
You weren’t sure how long you lasted in the bathroom; the only thing you knew is that for ten seconds, it was loud with the clear sounds of battle before quieting. There had been no crash, nothing to tell you that the action had been taken elsewhere, only that you had heard the familiar sound of Shoutos singing ice and then silence. You pulled on your fluffy white bathrobe that hung by the door on your bathroom, your pacing unstoppable in your inability to calm down.
Was Shouto alright? They didn’t both die out there, right? No, Shouto was more durable than that, you reasoned, your hands aching with your nerves.
The pulsing beat of your heart sat heavy in your throat, your fingers trembling with shot nerves and fearful thoughts until a soft knock on your door alerted you that someone was there.
“H-Hello?” you stammer, unable to keep yourself from speaking.
“It’s me,” you hear Shouto’s voice tiredly stated, and without so much as wondering if it really was him, you threw open the door.
Shouto stood there, a bruise on his jaw, a visible injury he had sustained from this fight. 
There was no stopping you throwing yourself into his arms, your own arms throwing around his neck in your dopamine surge. He had saved you, he had finished this.
“Sorry that took so long,” Shouto murmured into your ear, his head burying into the crook of your neck, sending intensive static down your spine. “Bastard took us seven blocks away; apparently, he has a pretty shitty teleportation quirk.”
“That’s okay, I’m just glad you’re okay,” you sigh, not wanting to let go of him anytime soon. “Was it just the bruise?”
“Mhm,” Shouto informs you, his fingers running against the thick fluffiness of the robe. “Quirk side effect is that it makes you stupidly dizzy after using it, and that includes everyone he takes with him. So I nearly was throwing up when he landed one on me. The police will take you in for questioning tomorrow morning if that’s alright? I figured it was too late, and you went through too much to be questioned tonight.”
“That’s perfect,” you agree, not at all caring when the interview would be, just as long as he was with you. 
Shouto eventually pulled away, his hands remaining on your waist while his eyes looked at you warmly, “Okay, well let’s get you on your bed, I want to make sure you’re okay.”
You nodded dumbly, following after Shouto when he guided you back into the room that was liberated from his ice but had obviously been fought in on account of your fallen books. You sighed when you sat up on your bed watching Shouto stand in front of you, observing you in your fluffy white robe.
“Shouto?” you asked while Shouto observed your face in the better lighting of your room, his finger soothing tear streaks you had long ago cried while he made sure you were okay.
“How did you get here so quickly?”
“I thought something was going to happen tonight. I had this feeling when I was leaving and decided to stay until it happened.”
“Yeah, but it’s not like I had screamed until after he was in my room,” you accuse, your eyes narrowing. 
Honestly, you had no idea how he knew… unless…
“I’m icy-hot,” Shouto states simply, but you couldn’t ignore the way that your body literally rejected this claim, how it sizzled to life because he knew what you did on these nights, and how you sparked at the thought of how he’d been supporting you for a year.
“You’re — ?”
“Yeah,” Shouto smiled, pulling away from you with a soft sigh, his arms folding across his chest. “A friend of mine accidentally sent me a link to your cam sessions when you first started, and I was hooked.”
“You’re telling me all this time, you knew?!”
Shouto nodded, unsure as to what you weren’t quite understanding.
“Why didn’t you say anything?!” your voice raised dangerously, your spine shot straight while your world both crashed and built around you.
“I didn’t think it was appropriate to tell my client that I watched her strip and fuck herself on my leisure time,” Shouto sighs, his eyebrow-raising in amusement.
“You’re a dick!” you exclaim, but your words were one of wonder, your eyes brightening in this new knowledge. “I can’t believe you, honestly!”
“Well then, I guess I can tell you a string of truths, and you can do nothing about it,” he challenges, his face nearing yours, dangerously close. His warm and mint breath fanning across your face. “I have feelings for you — deep and honest feelings for you, I think this piece you’re wearing under the rob is by far one of the best pieces you’ve ever worn, and I’m hard right now.”
“You know that Aphrodite is a facade,” you disclosed, your eyelids feeling like weights while you stared up at him, unmoving, unchallenging.
“I don’t think it is,” Shouto challenged his hands, tugging at the fabric that held your robe closed. “Aphrodite is just a stage name, but the persona is still you. You might be a total dork, but the person you think you present has always been apart of you.”
Your tongue is dry, but still, you wet your lips, confidence, and fear meeting in the middle of your chest in an all-out war to see which would win. It was to no one’s surprise that you wanted Shouto, but for it to be reciprocated was a bit beyond you, and finally, you inhaled a bit sharply through your nose, “If you want me to fuck you, you better ask properly. Like a good boy.”
His eyes glint in an unreserved way that sends fire through your spine and a heat flashing in your core. It had been a while since you’ve fucked anyone, and here was Shouto implying that you fuck him. He also seemed to want to be dommed, and if there was something you weren’t expecting from him, was that.
Shouto licks his lips, his hands moving from your waist and pressing onto the mattress so that he’s forcing you to lean backward, trapped in his hold. 
“I want you to fuck me,” he breathes, and in a similar exhilarating thrill of Aphrodite possessing you before a show, that electrifying courage courses through your veins and grabbing onto the thick fabric of his costume and bring him into a simmering kiss.
Your fingers wound in his hair, the intensive heat and passion exchanging between your lips were insane. It was mind-boggling as it was breathtaking. Your head tilted, and you pressed in more, feeling the weight of the bed dipping as Shouto climbed onto the bed with you. Shouto was bigger than you, in just about every way of the word, but still, with your stocking covered leg, you wound it around his waist and spun in your place.
Straddling his torso, you pressed incessant kisses to his mouth, his desperate return sending confidence to your head, a warm pulse in your body. 
“I wouldn’t have pegged you as a bottom,” you murmur against Shouto’s throat, your hands pressing flat against his chest, moving to unravel the restraints holding it together. You get the top of his jumpsuit undone, watching has his pale and toned chest slowly peeking through the growing opening. Your fingers move against the plains of his abs, nails moving against his hardened nipples while you sigh against his throat. “Such a good boy.”
Shouto heaves, his breathing uneven, unsteady, and unsure. For someone so confident thirty seconds earlier, he seemed to be crashing from that stream of confidence quickly, almost dangerously. Skirting around this knowledge, you removed your robe, discarding it onto the dirty floor with a content smirk. 
“I, um,” Shouto swallowed hard, his eyes fluttering at the sight of the lacy black undergarments and, for the first time, genuinely getting to appreciate them in real life. His fingers grab onto your waist, his hot as fire hands tracing your smooth skin, tracing against the hem of your panties until he got to the cleavage of your ass, stopping where your body met his. “I’ve never done this.”
“That’s alright,” you say, hands pushing the blue fabric of his costume off his shoulder, making quick work of it, and finally, your get to press your hands against his broad and naked shoulders. Your lips move unhurriedly against his neck, moving down until you reach his collarbone, taking a long swipe of your tongue against the protruding bone.
The words that had meant to come from Shouto’s lips drifted towards the ceiling, no longer viable with the way that he folded against your touch. With your lips back against his chin, your right hand stretched behind you and pressed firmly against Shouto’s hard buldge palming against the clothed erection. His eyes close immediately, the touch of another on his growing cock was foreign to him, but it was igniting something within him while you continued your ministrations. A strangled moan vibrating at the back of his throat, his hips rising to buck and grind against your cupping hand, only hindered by your teasing retreats and bell-like giggles.
“So desperate already, baby?” you whisper against his ear, your mouth coming back to his, meeting his trembling lips into a passionate kiss. When you pull away, he makes a noise similar to an animal in heat but is quickly silenced by your teeth biting gently against his lower lip. “Let’s get you out of this uniform.”
Shouto helps you make little work of removing his costume, the dark navy blue material joining your robe on the floor, and you straddle him one again. Only this time, it’s your cunt rolling against his clothed cock. 
“Do you want me to suck you off?” you ask, your lips pressing painted marks against his chest. The red of your lips shining like rubies against his pale skin, but it does nothing but stirs you on. It wasn’t a mark like a bite, but it was an acknowledgment that as of now, for this very moment, he was yours. The red lip print proof of this bond. “Do you want my mouth around your pretty cock?”
Shouto shudders at your words, his hips involuntarily bucking at your ask, and he nods his head. His cheeks dusted red, and his heart hammering in his throat, “Y-Yes, please suck me off.”
“Aww,” you coo, your fingers hooking around the waistband of his underwear, your cunt grinding against him. “You said, please!”
The underwear joins the rest of Shouto’s outfit on the floor, and you stare at Shouto’s cock in its full glory. The long thick length bouncing against his stomach, precum dripping slowly from its tip. The knowledge that he was already leaking from your gentlest attempts of domination sent power through you once again, and you smirked leaning down so that you were level with his cock.
“Such a pretty cock,” you sigh, wrapping your hand against his length, your mouth watering at the fact that you couldn’t encompass it in your hand. “So beautiful… now, I want you to stare at me the entire time I’m doing this icy-hot. I’m putting on a private show for you, and I expect my favorite viewer to watch the entire time.”
There was no need to wait because Shouto was ready for your mouth, and with one final roll of his pink head with your fingers, you began.
You brought your mouth to Shouto’s cock and licked a clean line from balls to crown, the back of your tongue swirling around the head.
Shouto’s moan was nothing short of pornographic, and near animalistic in the way that it sent shivers down your back. Most definitely caught in the feel of things, Shouto arched his ass from the bed to thrust right into your waiting mouth. With the confidence of who you tried to be as Aphrodite, you decided to be the best at what you were doing for Shouto, hopeful this would be something he would ever forget. Adjusting to his lifted hips, you gripped and pumped the lower half of Shouto’s cock while slathering and sucking attention at what you could fit into your mouth – he was a lot bigger than the dildos you used for your show.
Your mouth was heated sin to Shouto, unafraid to choke a little, gagging ever so often to send incredulous vibrations through his sensitive sex. You were also a bit sloppy, saliva and drool leaking with his precum down his length, dribbling from the corner of your mouth while he pressed further into you. You then pulled from his length, oxygen burning your lungs to take each of Shouto’s balls into your mouth and delicately roll them with your tongue as your fist capriciously switched between fast and slow over his throbbing cock.
Mouth hanging wide and silent, Shouto stared intensely at your slowly blinking form. You nuzzled your nose against the trimmed fuzz at the base of his hot dick, your lips creating a wet pop noise against his balls. The soft touches of your nose against the vein on his cock ignited a broken and almost needy rasp against Shouto’s chest. And when a thumb, wet with your spit and his precum, trailed a line down the backside of his cock, Shouto’s heavy tongue caught up.
“That feels so good!” Shouto moaned, his voice gruff and near unrecognizable by its tenor. “More, y/n, please, more.”
And who were you if you didn’t comply? 
You groaned at the lewd position you were in, his intense duel eyes focused on every move you made while his cock twitches in front of you, your tongue flicking out of your mouth licking the bead of pre-cum on his tip making your cunt throb in anticipation. 
“Look at you, so needy, so innocent,” you giggle, using the hands that had been sensually traveling up and down his cock to angle it better for your await mouth. Brushing his head against your tongue, his pre-cum gathered on the slick surface, you delighted when his stomach contorted with his tightened breathing. You wouldn’t close your mouth to taste him, so saliva dribbling down your tongue against his length. Your hands rubbed it against his cock, using it as natural lubrication as you continue, “desperate for my mouth, aren’t you?”
Shouto tried to nod his head, which made you giggle, grinning down at him as you once more push his cock inside your heated cavern. Pulling it out slowly when you notice that his eyelids close for a little longer than a soft moan. 
“Keep your hands on me, icy-hot,” you coax, tangling his fingers onto your scalp. Keeping your left hand against the back of his thigh to land a slap against his skin to keep him focused. It was something that he found to be shocking, but the hair tugging that followed the surprising hit sent a proper shiver down your spine. You pushed his cock forward again, pushing inside you deeper this time, so his length hit further than the back of your throat. 
The motion once more sending Shouto to some other dimension as he hissed your name. The tightness of your throat, the muscle contracting against his thick cock, and the cold drool the dribbled from your lips sent his mind spinning. He only wanted more, and he craved more. With ragged breathing and the sight of his contracting stomach, his hips began to thrust into your mouth, pressing his cock further into your throat. Each desperate thrust had him hitting the back of your throat, drool slipping out of your mouth as you tried to breathe through your nose, groaning against his length, sending vibrations along Shouto’s cock. 
Your eyes began to water at the slightly suffocating sensation. Still, you were excellent despite the tears slipped down your cheeks, his hips thrusting into you roughly, the sign of an inexperienced man. Moving your hands to his upper thighs, you tried to slow his forceful thrusts, trying to allocate for time to adjust to his size in your throat. Instead, Shouto’s thrusting hips only stammered more, the sinful noises in your throat, sending only better feeling through his body. His eyes can read your eyes that told him this was okay.
“Fuck, you’re so good,” Shouto babbles, his hands clutching your hair, fingers digging into your scalp using it as leverage to move you against his length. “I never thought, shit, I never thought it would feel like this, yes, yes do that!”
Your moans vibrated around his length as you let the larger man manipulate your wet cavern. Your tongue now rolling along his length, tracing the sensitive protruding veins on his cock, and with the speed in which he was thrusting into your mouth, it only heightened the desperate noises pouring from his mouth. So much so that he almost stopped shifting his powerful hips all together.
You felt Shouto’s thrusts stagger as he came closer to his release, his hips speeding up, your head bobbing with his final desperation as he gave a final hard push into your mouth. His tip hitting the far back in your throat, and he came inside you with a snarl. His hands held your head down on his length as you grunted, trying to take in all fast release in one swallow, but some spilled out of your mouth. His hot sticky seed dribbling down your chin. 
When you moved pulled to remove his length from your mouth, you immediately closed your mouth, tongue lapping at the cum that escaped your lips. 
Crawling back up to Shouto’s face, you gave a tight-lipped smile when his clammy hands rested against your waist, and with fluttering eyes, you connected your lips again. The minority of his cum still sits in your mouth and is pushed into his mouth with your tongue.
You sat up, your lips still connected to his with a string of entangled saliva and cum, his hands coming around to cup your ass, and with the sexiness, only one could achieve through countless times of stripping, you were finally free from your own lingerie.
“What’re you—”
A gust of air ricocheted from Shout’s lungs as his back slammed into the mattress once again, your hands planted against his shoulders, your head cocked to the side with a mischievous smirk. Shouto doesn’t know how to react, for someone who couldn’t shove him out of the doorway was suddenly handling him just fine in bed. But the thought of that stirred his cock back to life, something you noticed the second it rested against your ass. Shouto groaned in embarrassment, but it didn’t matter to you, who arched down to nuzzle his nose. Then you were licking searing stripes along his neck, teeth nibbling and pulling at his ear, digging at the joint of throat and shoulder, Shouto’s tilted chin and swollen wet lips.
Knees dug into the sides of Shouto’s chest, your nails cutting crescents into the slick shining mountains of his shoulders, Shouto hands grasped onto your naked form for dear life, coercing the storm of your shared desire. The impatient and growing unignorable weight of Shouto’s cock slotted between your slick and sopping cunt. Sloppy wet with your untouched arousal, a ticking timebomb of pleasure each time you thrust back against his rehardened cock.
“Y/n, please—” Shouto choked on his words, a lusting cry when he cracked his head back against the soft mattress at the moment you carted his hot cock against your dripping, aching cunt with one firm and delicate palm and your other pressing your weight against his chest. “Oh shit, yes, fuck – yes, more. Please, put it in, y/n. I want, shit, I want you to fuck me properly, y/n—”
“So fuckin’ needy,” your breathlessly giddy reply came, your words soaked the ear and filled Shouto’s head completely. Tightening his grip on your waist to accommodate a stronger hold on you in a desperate thought to sane himself, you began a more frantic rhythm of work-roughened humping. “Is this how you responded back to me when I stream? Do you listen to my instructions the entire time, Shou-to?”
The squelch and wet noises of your hips dragging staccato against Shouto’s throbbing skin was maddening, dumbing him down to strangled huffs and squeaks against your swollen lips. The pulse against Shouto’s own lips raged, a frantic desire for him that both weakened and empowered him to the bone.
Shouto’s finger dug into your skin, leaving imprinted bruises where he touched, his hips slamming up into yours. Wanting more, craving more, and with nothing more to hold from him, you complied and with a wet noise, sunk all the way down against him.
“Shit, shit, wait,” Shouto hoarsely whispered, his nails ripping moons into your skin while he panted against your skin. “You’re too tight, Imma cum, fuck, wait…”
You laughed against his mouth, but you didn’t move, allowing him the time to adjust his brow slick with sweat, eyes closed in concentration. Regardless, your walls fluttered around him while you adjusted, and he shivered with every involuntary move. “You good?” you murmur against his mouth, tongue lapping at his pressed white lips.
He nods once, and you grin, taking that as means to push as far up as you could, and with your entire weight and clench of your muscles, sunk back down against him.
A savage snarl ripped from Shouto’s throat, more animal than man as he tore at your lips, his mouth open with a hot tongue and teeth that tugged at your lips. You had no choice but to open up, letting his tongue meet yours while you felt his cock throbbing against your clenching walls. You met him in full innocent need, your kisses were uncoordinated attack from all angles, his hand working their way to your ass, once again gripping and pulling that the soft and warm flesh.
Your hips rolled against his, lifting up and falling with growing forces, 
The small of Shouto’s waist burned raw from how it kept curling into the mattress, his shoulders singing with sharp pain from your fingernails. Your breaths puff against Shouto’s lips as if you had never taken a single deep breath in your life like you’d flung yourself into the open flames just to fuck Shouto. The fill of his cock, the maddening way that his cock filled you out, it made your head spin and your knees tremble. With each twitch of his cock, his protruding veins pushing against your spongey walls, increasing the sensation, sending fire to your curling toes. Your weight pushing heavy on Shouto now, sandwiching him hard against the gentle mattress when he couldn’t meet you in an upwards thrust, too lost in the sensation of your smoldering cunt around his cock. 
Shouto’s thighs and stomach quivered in your conquest, his words an unclear babble in his prayer to you. The air was filled with the scent of sex, sweat, cum, and something else. Something you couldn’t put your tongue on, but it stirred you on more with the wet slapping noises of your meeting hips.
It was too much, too much, yet nowhere near enough.
“Y/n, I’m gonna—” Shouto searched for his words a short raspy cry, his cock swelling up and pulsing in your clenching walls, his fingers clenching around the nape of your neck. Bringing you in for another hot kiss. “Gonna—”
“Cum for me,” was the only thing you rasped in his mouth, your lips a deceivingly soft push against Shouto’s bruised lips.
Shouto shot off inside of you like an exploding fire, his eyes squeezed shut so tightly he could only see white and feel you. His grip tightened around your body, pressing you slick against him. But the increased angle is what sends you over the edge, your eyes rolling when your body tenses, pleasure, and relief swallowing you whole when your orgasm overcomes you.
“Shouto,” you mewl in a cracked croak of a voice, your face buried in Shouto’s shoulder as he feels your walls spasm against his cock in almost insane ways. 
“That… shit,” he breathes, unable to think.
“Yeah, same,” you mumble, moving to press a kiss onto his lips.
His body rolls off warmth from his skin, and together, the two of you fall asleep on the bed, entangled in sweat and cum and only elation in your blood.
“TODOROKI-KUN!” Iida’s voice pierces through his phone when Shouto wakes up the next morning.
“Iida,” he greets, watching while you brush your teeth, studying the various marks on your body from the night before.
“I don’t know what you’re talking about, Iida?”
It was then that the two of you realized you had never turned off your session.
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artificialqueens · 7 months ago
Me and You Together, 1/? (Taywhora) - Ortega
fic summary: The cardinal rule of having flatmates is that you Do Not Catch Feelings For Your Flatmates, because everything inevitably goes to shit and gets made horrifically awkward. A’whora and Tayce both know this, but being in first year of uni and making good decisions have never really gone hand in hand.
a/n: i honestly have begun this wip with glitter and jesus. i have no idea how many chapters it’s going to have or what exactly the plot is going to be…all i know is that it’s fwb (flatmates with benefits) to lovers taywhora with a background love triangle involving Ellie bc she’s my fav. pls enjoy and pls leave me love because i am a keyworker so really one comment = one 6pm clap xo
P.S. the Friday mentioned in this fic is the one A’whora’s obsessed with and was dancing to on her insta…not the popular Rebecca Black song. also 100 points to anyone who knows the song Lawrence and Ellie get excited about in the club.
content note: they’re freshers at uni in the UK and this country has a binge drinking problem xo. please don’t expect any of these girls to be acting responsibly. if you think you might be influenced by a fic talking about alcohol, smoking, sex and drugs, this might not be for you luv xo
December- Fell in love with her in stages
A year ago if you had asked A’whora what she was doing on a Tuesday night, the answer would’ve been mundane.
Homework, maybe, if she could be bothered. She could always copy it from Mocha in registration, after all. Making tiny outfits for Barbie dolls out of fabric scraps, very probably; she hadn’t stopped doing that just because she was older, the only difference from when she was nine was that she didn’t make her Barbies talk anymore. Invariably she’d stay up til’ well past her bedtime, earphones plugged in to her laptop and trying not to sing along to the playlist of dance music she’d spent a year cultivating. She’d poked fun at her Mum for still giving her a bedtime at the big age of eighteen, but she’d maintained that while her girl was living under her roof it would be bed by eleven on a weeknight and out no later than three on a weekend.
These rules, however, were quickly disposed of as soon as she’d got the keys to her uni flat. As soon as she’d found out her other flatmates were just as riotous and chaotic as she was and loved a night out just as much, her weeks had been filled with nights she’d never forget in bars she couldn’t remember, heads against speakers and sore feet from heels and ridiculous pre-drinks with even more ridiculous cocktails.
One such cocktail is the one her flatmate’s making for her now. Ellie doesn’t have any of the professional equipment a usual bartender would, but that doesn’t seem to stop her- the messy countertops are a treasure trove of obscure liqueurs and alcopops, and Ellie twirls a yellow-blonde curl around her finger before giving a gasp of satisfaction as her hand settles on a sticky green bottle.    
“One shot of apple soors, half a can of blue Monster, top up the rest with vodka,” she explains as she works with the various bottles and cans quickly, pouring into the pint glass they’d stolen from one of the pubs on a bar crawl during Freshers Week. She hands it to A’whora with a cheeky, mischievous grin on her painted face.
A’whora sniffs her glass and feels her nose wrinkle up involuntarily at the concoction her flatmate’s poured for her. “Els, if I drink that I’ll die.”
Ellie, to her credit, simply gives a snort of disapproval in response. Her pink acrylics click against the quarter bottle of vodka as she tightens the lid and replaces it in their freezer, all shiny and slick with frost. “Well if you are gonna take three hours to get ready then you’re gonna have to deal with the consequences of playing catch-up, babe.”
“Bitch,” A’whora jokes, rolling her eyes before sipping from her glass. The mixture makes her screw her face up so she takes another sip, then another until the weird sour-sweet-burn in her throat becomes more like a cocktail than cough syrup.
“Good, right?” Ellie prompts her, leaning against their kitchen counter proudly.
“No,” A’whora deadpans, causing her friend to burst out laughing. Then, realising something, she cocks her head. “Wait a second. What the fuck did you call the green drink?”
Ellie frowns. “Soors.”
“…Sourz?” A’whora says back to her, already giggling at the difference in dialects.
“Don’t play the pronunciation game with me, bitch.”
“Oh, I absolutely will when you’re just saying it wrong.”
“Lawrence!” Ellie shouts through to their other flatmate, sitting on the sofa and frowning at the bluetooth speaker as if it’s personally committed some crime against her. Ellie holds up the bottle as Lawrence snaps her head round, dark curls flying over her shoulder. “What’s this?”
“Liquidised heartburn,” she says instantly. A’whora snorts as Ellie rolls her eyes.
“Fuck’s sake. What’s it called?”
“Soors,” Lawrence shrugs back at her, and Ellie gestures triumphantly at A’whora who can only pout in reply.
“Listen, I can get Tia, Bims and Tayce through here and they’d all outnumber you, so. Shut it.”
“Yeah bet you’d love to get Tayce through here, A’whora,” Ellie smirks, raising both her eyebrows at her in an infuriatingly smug expression.
A’whora is clamped for a couple of reasons, the first being the God-awful nickname all her flatmates use against her. She’d managed to acquire it the first time they’d all played Never Have I Ever together and A’whora had drank for pretty much every situation or scenario presented to her. Before she’d known it, her very lovely, very Disney Princess-esque first name had been replaced by a pun that Bimini had come up with in the midst of their third rum and coke, and thus Aurora was dead and A’whora was born.  
The second reason for her silence is a result of the mention of one of the girls she’s living with. A’whora had never really expected to develop a crush on any of her flatmates, which had been a ridiculous thing to assume- given the fact she’s attracted to girls and was going to be living with other girls, the odds would dictate that at least one of them would be her type. Luckily, though, she hasn’t developed any feelings for any of them. At least, that’s the lie she’s telling herself, as the cardinal rule of having flatmates is that you Do Not Catch Feelings For Your Flatmates because everything inevitably goes to shit and gets made horrifically awkward.
Tayce is different to Ellie, Lawrence, Tia and Bimini, though. None of the others get A’whora so flustered when they speak to her, none of the other others get her heart racing so fast it threatens to fly out her ribcage. She doesn’t feel the same sense of dizzy joy when she’s alone with any of the others: only when Tayce makes dinner with her, or when she comes to her room at ten at night for chats, or when they play Tayce’s stupid video games together and she beats her way-too-many-consecutive-times in a row to be considered fair. A’whora has tried to explain it away as just wanting to be liked, just wanting to be good friends, just just just until she can’t justify her own excuses any more and has instead resigned herself to repressing the feelings she has for her friend. The tension between them is building, though, and it’s only a matter of time until something happens.
A’whora jumps a little, flinching as she realises she’s gone too long without a comeback. Ellie’s expression is expectant and impatient as she clicks her fingers once, twice, three times in her face.
“Shut up, Ellie-phant,” A’whora manages to mumble almost incoherently as she turns on her heel, walking through to the living room area to sit with Lawrence and join her on her quest to making their speakers work.
Their flat is an odd one. The front door leads to a prison cell-style line of equally pokey rooms- Lawrence’s, Tayce’s, A’whora’s, Bimini’s, Ellie’s and Tia’s respectively- and two bathrooms. Then another door opens out onto two hobs, endless cupboards and grimy, cluttered countertops, and a scrub of shitty green carpet and three worn out red-purple sofas that look as tired as Bimini does when they come home from a random afterparty just as A’whora leaves for lectures. It doesn’t in any way look like a normal flat, but A’whora supposes they’re about as far away from normal as a sentient slice of cheese.
“Oh babe, you must be crushing crushing. I don’t think I’ve heard you come out with a comeback as shit as that in the whole four months we’ve lived together,” Ellie continues the conversation, buzzing behind her like an annoying fly.
“It wasn’t shit, it was good!”
“Lawrie, what’s a good comeback to me calling A’whora a whore?” Ellie appeals to her friend again.
“Rich of you to be calling anyone a whore. You come from a long line of whores. You’re a whore, your maw’s a whore, your maw’s maw was a whore. There’s cave paintings of your ancestors wi’ twelve dicks in their mouths. There’s tapestries of them gettin’ shagged left, right an’ centre. There’s clay sculptures of them being whores. Pipe the fuck doon,” Lawrence reels off, Ellie growing more and more breathless with hysterical laughter beside her and A’whora falling into giggles too.
“Well this was a weird time for me to enter the conversation.”
A’whora feels her heart lift and her face light up when she turns around and sees Tayce walking through to join them, the posture of a model with her fingers curled elegantly around the stem of a wine glass. She flicks her long, dark hair over her shoulder as she sits down on the small sofa beside A’whora, and she wonders how Tayce can sit in a way that makes the stained, battered, scratchy upholstery seem like the set of a high fashion photoshoot.
“Just talking about you,” A’whora sticks her tongue out at her, laughing at the way Tayce reels in fake horror and Lawrence explodes with laughter across from them.
“The valour, the bravery and the backbone,” Tayce grumbles, rolling her eyes. Her gaze rests upon something behind A’whora- the back of the sofa. Maybe there’s a new rip in it, God knows how that can have happened. She holds back a gasp, though, when Tayce reaches out and runs a gentle finger down her spine against her bare skin; an advantage of the sparkly backless cowl neck top she’s wearing that she hadn’t known existed until now. “Speaking of backbones, you’re such a skinny minnie.”
“Did you go to the school of backhanded compliments?” A’whora teases, deflecting from the way her heart’s still thrumming in her chest at the contact.
“Shush, you. You know you look bloody gorgeous,” Tayce says back to her, and even though there’s a laugh to her voice A’whora knows she means it. Her heart’s still going like a train but she can chalk that up to the half can of Monster Ellie’s dumped into her drink, so when she mutters out a thanks hun, same to you she hopes it doesn’t sound as insincere as it feels.
The thing is, she does look gorgeous. She’s dressed in a black lace bodysuit with straps that criss-cross up the back and a tight leather skirt that makes her legs look even longer than they already are. She’s opted for heels like A’whora has (unlike Ellie and Lawrence who have designated night-out trainers stained with spillages of drinks gone by) but hers have straps that are laced all the way round her calves and tied with a knot at the top. Everything about her outfit makes everything about her look outrageously good, and A’whora thinks it should be illegal for anyone to be this ethereal.
Tayce looks as if she’s about to fire something back at her judging by the little smile on her face but she’s interrupted by an outrageously loud boom from the speakers, as something that could be Lady Gaga but is too deafening to be deciphered screams through it. As the girls all flinch there’s a frantic diminuendo that comes from Lawrence mashing the volume button until the pitch is finally bearable and they can all take their hands off their ears.
“Lawrence, did you get the speakers working?” Ellie quips sarcastically, to which Tayce and A’whora burst out laughing and Lawrence almost elbows Ellie off the sofa opposite.
In the melee A’whora almost doesn’t notice Bimini and Tia come in, and they look ready to start the night if a little panicked.
“What the hell was that?” Tia asks quickly, opening the fridge and grabbing her bottle of premixed Malibu and pineapple before perching herself on the couch beside Ellie. “I thought part of the building had exploded.”
“Nah that was just my vagina, babes,” Lawrence says offhandedly, the others either screeching with laughter or groaning in anguish. Bimini crosses the room with their selection of drinks cradled in their arms and budges Tayce and A’whora up with an oi, oi!, A'whora’s pulse thudding at her wrist as a result of her close proximity to her crush.
No- her friend. Her friend who’s never going to be anything more than that.
With the six flatmates assembled, drinks poured, and tunes on, their pre drinks can begin. Pres at their flat often look like drinking games, yelling along to early 2010s pop, tipsily booking taxis and then touching up their makeup in the waiting time before they arrive. Tonight is no different; they bicker about where they want to go and eventually decide on the union because although it’s “too het” according to Ellie, it’s admittedly cheap and a good night out. A’whora chips into the conversation every five minutes with shady, catty jokes that Tayce howls at and leans into her side and clutches her arm or her hand or her thigh.
The contact is nice. They’ve reached that stage of their friendship where they’re touchy and close a lot of the time- A’whora’s constantly playing with Tayce’s hair and Tayce thinks nothing of just walking into A’whora’s room and getting under the duvet with her. They throw their arms around each other and bump shoulders as they walk and touch legs on the sofa, much like they’re doing now. A’whora has never been a cuddly type of friend- to be honest, she still isn’t- but there’s something about doing all this with Tayce that she doesn’t mind. It’s a comfortable kind of intimacy, a knitted blanket of sorts, but it’s a fragile space for Tayce to occupy too and A’whora knows it’s risky to let her rip a wall down she’s never been aware of til now.
The night rolls along and with every refill of A’whora’s glass the music gets turned up a little more, a little more, a little more until they’re all having to yell over each other as they play wiggly wiggly woo, who’s most likely to. It’s all fun and games until it gets to who’s most likely to sleep with a flatmate, and there’s a confusing mess of finger-pointing where Lawrence points to Ellie, Tayce points to Lawrence, and Bimini, Ellie and Tia point to A’whora.
“Fuck off, why’s it me?” she screeches in outrage, trying to cover up the fact her cheeks are burning and that Tayce seems suddenly all too close to her.
“Because! It’s you! It’s A’whora!” Bimini laughs, their accent making them seem all the more mischievous and shit-stirring.
“Well! If I’m sleeping with a flatmate that must mean one of you’s gonna be involved, doesn’t it?!”
“Right, sorry, yeah,” Bimini nods understandingly, before immediately switching to point to Tayce. There’s an arena-crowd roar that erupts from the others, one that makes A’whora laugh and blush scarlet at the same time. She sneaks a look at Tayce, who’s regarding her with much the same expression.
“I’m down if you are, hun,” A’whora jokes-but-not-really, shaking Tayce’s arm as if it’ll take away from the weak joke she’s trying to make. Tayce only shoots her a wink with her tongue trapped between her teeth.
“In your dreams, love.”
A’whora’s glad of the others laughing so she can pretend to join in, occupy herself with something other than the overwhelming urge to reply to Tayce with exactly.
The rest of pres fly by tipsily and incoherently. They get a noise complaint from the weird flat underneath them which seems solely comprised of six boys who never go outside, which prompts them to book taxis even though the union is only about a ten minute walk away. A’whora helps Tia re-glue on her eyelashes in a rush and Bimini spontaneously fills a hipflask with Ellie’s apple sourz, “for the road”. When the taxis roll up outside Lawrence hurries them all out the door with the urgency of a mother of five, and before long they’re standing in a queue around the block, Bimini and A’whora sharing Tia’s huge puffer jacket because neither of them thought to pick up coats in their haste to leave.
Tayce pulls a packet of cigarettes out of her pocket, flips the little cardboard lid of them open and offers them round to the others. A’whora takes one because Tayce is offering, and really Tayce could offer them grenades with the pins pulled out and A’whora would accept if only to get her smile flashed at her again or the chance that their hands might touch during the transfer. A’whora thinks Tayce is every public health campaign’s worst nightmare as she watches her hold the cigarette between her index and middle fingers, wrap her lips around the end and inhale. Her cheekbones are razor-sharp as she drags then lets the breath go, red lipstick on the paper and the smoke curling up into the sparkly, dark night sky.
She is beautiful.
It’s because she’s beautiful that A’whora shouldn’t be surprised by the events that begin to unfold as they enter the club. Ellie immediately makes her way over to a booth, picks up the little sign that says it’s reserved and chucks it onto the dancefloor to get trampled underfoot and covered in sticky cocktail spillages. Tayce’s round is first because she lost Ring of Fire back at the flat so she goes over to the bar for shots, promising she’ll be only a couple of minutes and the others believing her; the way she looks ensures she never has a long wait time at the bar.
So they wait. And they wait. At first they don’t even notice how long they’ve waited- the tunes are good and loud and so they all yell along happily. Until Lawrence turns to the others with narrowed eyes.
“Here. Where the fuck is Tayce? She’s been ages.”
They all scan the bar, and Ellie suddenly points dramatically over to the other end of it. “Oh!”
Because Tayce is standing at the bar with no drinks and no interest in any of the bartenders taking drinks orders. She’s talking to a tall blonde with a dazzling smile and a low-cut crop top, and something inside A’whora burns and sinks at the same time. Tayce is allowed to be talking to a pretty girl. She’s not not allowed to. But it doesn’t make her any less jealous of the attention she’s giving her.
It’s a horror movie she can’t look away from. She’s aware that Ellie has gone to get the drinks instead, but that’s all she can absorb from her surroundings. She tunes out of the conversation at the table as she continues to watch the two of them interact. The girl’s got muscles, and her hair falls in neat waves on her shoulders, and she’s smiley and charming and doesn’t talk much, preferring instead to listen to Tayce. A’whora is different. A’whora is constantly on transmit; loud and opinionated and gobby and, okay, sometimes a little bit judgemental. She can’t do charming and demure. She can’t be what Tayce is very clearly interested in.
A thud next to her causes A’whora to whip her head round, tearing herself away from the scene playing out in front of her and ripping the plaster off.
“Fuck’s sake. Jaegerbombs with Red Bull? Puh-rison!” Ellie half-whines, half-shouts.
“Red Bull is the standard, not everyone can have the same taste in energy drinks as a sixteen year old virgin gamer,” A’whora narrows her eyes, gratefully accepting the drink from her nonetheless and shotting it back as if it’ll help blind her, or perhaps forget what she’s seeing.
“God. Who pissed in your coco pops?” Ellie fires back, rolling her eyes dramatically.
“Bold of you to assume anything specific has happened to make her this bitter, mean and salty,” Tia jokes from A’whora’s side, and as the others scream and laugh A’whora in turn fixes her with a glare, wishing momentarily she had laser beams for pupils.
“Ooh, that’s made me want a tequila,” Lawrence cries enthusiastically, too loud even from the other side of the booth.
“Eh, excuse me! I just got you a Jaegerbomb, finish that first,” Ellie chastises her like a world-weary parent, pushing the glass towards her friend and sliding her hand over the table, sticky with the ghosts of questionable drinks’ past. A’whora has to snort at her tone.
“Yeah Lawrence, finish your Jaegerbomb or you won’t get any dessert. Listen to your responsible Mum whose eyelash is coming off.”
A big roar of laughter flies up from the others, and it’s Ellie’s turn to glare at A’whora this time. She looks as if she’s about to say something back when Bimini sniffs their glass and frowns.
“Is Jaegerbombs vegan?”
Everyone apparently wishes to ignore the lack of grammatical sense to their sentence, and it’s Lawrence who responds first. “They’re vegan in the same sense that bleach is vegan?”
Bewilderingly satisfied, Bimini raises their glass to the middle of the table and the girls join them, cheering as they all clink them together and chuck the drinks back. The fact A’whora can’t join in leaves her eyes to fall on Tayce and that girl again. Tayce is smiling and it’s the brightest thing in the club, laughing as the girl flips her hair and touches her hand and tells some joke that’s obviously not as funny as anything A’whora could say. She wonders if she’s ever made Tayce smile like that. Maybe it’s the alcohol, but she can’t remember.
“You know they used to use Jaeger as cough medicine? And for ages it was drunk by, like…old Tories who went on deer hunts,” Tia reels off excitably, and A’whora can’t help but roll her eyes affectionately at her friend’s bizarre general knowledge. “There’s this rumour that it’s got deer’s blood in it.”
Bimini splutters, coughs, and chokes all at once. As Lawrence slaps their back entirely too roughly in a way that’s about as helpful as a water gun at a house fire, A’whora can’t help but turn to face Tia incredulously.
“What the fuck did you say that for?!”
Tia shrugs, too tipsy to register A’whora’s disbelief. “Fun fact.”
“You didn’t think to pipe up with that when Bims was asking if it was vegan?”
“It’s just a rumour!” Tia says defensively, then turns to Bimini to check they’re okay. A’whora huffs in exasperation, folding her arms and throwing her back against the supposedly cushioned walls of the booth. As she stares straight ahead and ignores the fuss her friends are making, her eyes fall on Tayce again and her heart hurts more than it should to see her with her phone out and the girl beside her doing the same. They’re so clearly swapping numbers. They’re allowed to swap numbers. It’s not like A’whora’s got dibs on Tayce, it’s not like she’s got any right to feel a burn in her stomach and a flame in her heart and a feeling of something slipping away.
“Right!” Lawrence all but yells, forcing A’whora to tear her eyes away. “I’ve finished my Jaegerbomb, Mum, can we get tequila now?”
Ellie sighs. “Fine! But you’re buying me this one, bitch.”
“I’ll come with,” A’whora says, thinking she’ll need at least ten more units of alcohol to stop feeling feelings.  
“We’re going for a boogie, catch us up,” Bimini decides, as Rhythm is a Dancer blasts on the overhead speakers and Tia lets out a whooo! that’s way too white for a mixed-race girl.
So they move, A’whora bum-shuffling her way out of the booth and following Lawrence and Ellie, her feet sore in her heels. She purposefully blocks Tayce out of her peripheral vision as she leans against the bar, but she’s only separated from her by about six people also waiting and if she tilted her head forward she could definitely catch her eye if she wanted.
“Rhythm is a dancer, two for one at Asda,” Ellie sings along, bopping her head enthusiastically. A’whora laughs weakly, her proximity to Tayce and that bitch she’s talking to entirely too distracting.
“Shut your hole and tell me what you’re wanting,” Lawrence orders her. Ellie drums the palms of her hands against the bar as she semi-shouts sambucaaaaa, and A’whora asks for a vodka. She’s aware she’s mixing entirely too many spirits and her hangover tomorrow will be potentially life-threatening, but she doesn’t care.
“Tayce is still there. Should we shout her over and see what she wants?” Ellie suggests, craning her neck. A’whora firmly shakes her head.
“She’s wanting that baby Hulk she’s been talking to all night, apparently,” she all but spits, shocking herself at her venom. It’s clear she shocks the girls as well, and Lawrence turns around and simply raises her eyebrows at her.
“Men’s dress trousers in a hotel.”
A’whora can only blink. “What?”
Lawrence pauses for dramatic effect (or perhaps that’s just the Jaegerbomb making its alcohol content known). She points a finger at A’whora, then finishes whatever point she’s making. “Pressed.”
“Purrr!” Ellie laughs in agreement, grabbing A’whora’s shoulder and shaking it in an action that’s probably meant to be gentle but almost shakes her bone out of its socket. “Oh my God, that totally explains why you’ve been such a bitch all night.”
“This wee cow’s been a bitch her whole life,” Lawrence joins in. A’whora knows she’s got a proper face on by now, Dot Cotton licking piss off a nettle, but she can’t help it. She hates being wound up and she makes this perfectly clear to her friends via her furious silence.
“Nah, but tonight she’s a jealous bitch,” Ellie sticks her tongue out at her, and A’whora huffs.
“I’m not jealous!” she lies. “I’m just pissed off that she comes on a night out with us and she spends it talking to some random bitch she barely knows instead of her friends.”
“Wait. Oh my God, do you fancy Tayce?” Lawrence asks, a bull in a china shop on cocaine. Before A’whora can defend herself Ellie barks a laugh.
“Aw Lauzza, come on to fuck! Have you ever walked in when it’s been just the two of them? They’re so fucking flirty it’s disgusting.”
“DISGUSTEN!” Lawrence shouts, and it goes about ten percent of the way to drawing A’whora out of her mood.
“I don’t flirt with Tayce! I don’t fancy her either!” A’whora cries, exasperated. She realises too-late that her volume may have been too loud, but when she looks over at the topic of conversation again she’s both disappointed and relieved to see that she hasn’t registered a thing. “Anyway, you know you can’t shag your flatmate. It’s like the first rule of having flatmates. It would just make everything awkward.”  
“That the only thing stopping you?” Lawrence looks at her pointedly.  
“The bartender’s free,” A’whora glances just over Lawrence’s shoulder, and she turns around so fast it almost makes her feel dizzy. While Lawrence orders it leaves Ellie to turn to A’whora and pat her hand sympathetically.
“Why don’t you just go up to her?” she suggests. “I mean would it be so bad if you did just shag and get the pent-up tension released and then you can both just move on? I mean it’s not like you want to be her girlfriend or anything.”
A’whora presses her lips together and doesn’t reply. Her silence seems to communicate too much as Ellie’s mouth drops open a little and she fixes her with a pointed stare. “Oh, A’whora.”
“Look, I don’t know,” A’whora rushes to defend herself, her words spilling out over themselves in the way they sometimes do when she’s tipsy. “Like obviously she’s gorgeous but also, like…I do like her as a person as well, and I like being around her and just enjoying her company-”
Ellie splutters a giggle. “Enjoying her company, are you eighty years old in a care home?”
“I’m gonna slap you in a minute, shut up!” A’whora laughs incredulously. “But, like, I just…I don’t know if she likes me back like that, you know?
Ellie frowns. “I think, then, my advice would be…don’t shag her if you don’t think you can keep it to just that. ‘Cause obviously you don’t want to end up getting hurt.”
“Right, yeah,” A’whora replies, nodding.
If she’s honest, she’s disappointed. Obviously she’d be lying if she said she didn’t want to sleep with Tayce- because fucking look at her- but just like Ellie said, she knows she would end up getting hurt if anything happened between them. Tayce would probably consider it a one-time thing and A’whora would be let down, or it would turn into some long, drawn-out friends with benefits scenario that would probably make everything worse.
The thing is she can only repress her feelings so much and tonight she’s feeling like one of Ellie’s cans of Monster that Tia shook up as a joke and ended up spurting out its contents so violently that there’s still a green-blue stain on their kitchen wall. A’whora’s way too close to telling the girls about every time she’s pictured her and Tayce falling asleep together and waking up together, every time she’s imagined them planning actual dates, every time she’s wanted to kiss her on the sofa- not necessarily even a kiss kiss but just a peck on the cheek, a soft one pressed to the crown of her head, a little one against their knuckles as they hold hands.
It all sounds ridiculous and silly and way too high school. Nothing seems to work the same at uni. Everyone just seems to shag, hook up, kiss strangers they’ll never see again in the shadows of grimy clubs. Everything seems to happen when everyone’s drunk. Everything’s done out of lust rather than love. Everything is so short-term because you can’t plan for the long term if you wake up and don’t remember the night before.
A’whora loves uni, but she doesn’t like that.
Besides, she’s already done all that in high school anyway. Sixth form had been like a crash course in freshers’ week; if she wasn’t drinking in parks or going to house parties she was sneaking into nightclubs using a fake ID that even Stevie Wonder could’ve seen right through. She’d half-heartedly slept with boys and figured out she liked girls when a sleepover after a party took a turn. She’d tried smoking and she came to the conclusion that she didn’t like it enough to buy her own cigarettes, she’d tried mandy once and that was once too much for her. All of that has prepared her well for uni- she’s street smart and has her head screwed on (for the most part- she’s still testing her limits as far as alcohol’s concerned). But feeling like she’s feeling for Tayce is uncharted territory, and out of everything she’s already done and experienced A’whora finds it hard to believe there’s not an age limit on this sort of thing because it all feels more risky and dangerous than smoking roll-ups in a children’s playpark at one in the morning ever did.
A wayheyyy! from Lawrence cuts through her thoughts and she accepts the shot she’s holding out to her, wordlessly clinking it together with Lawrence’s and Ellie’s and slamming it back as if it’s some form of medicine she desperately needs.
“It’s so weird that you don’t do the whole lime and salt thing,” Ellie wrinkles her nose at her friend, who in turn punches one of her own tits with what seems to be pride.
“‘Cause I’m made of strong stuff, babes. Right, what’s the conclusion on this one? Does she fancy Tayce or no?”
“Surely this is a bathroom stall conversation?” A’whora pouts, annoyed that her feelings for Tayce have been brought back up.
As Ellie relays to Lawrence what she’d said to A’whora, A’whora momentarily wonders if she’s in control of anything in her life any more.
Lawrence nods when Ellie’s done. “Smart advice. ‘Cause it would make things awkward for the flat. ‘Magine trying to make a Pot Noodle in the middle of a live-action episode of Eastenders.”
A’whora screws her face up in confusion. “All episodes of Eastenders are live action?”
“Y’know what the fuck I mean,” Lawrence rolls her eyes in exasperation. “Well we’ve given you our blessing and basically we represent the whole country, so. Go for it.”
“Thanks, Nicola Sturgeon, good to know I have your approval,” A’whora smirks at her, amused. When some Becky Hill song comes on over the speakers she takes it as her cue to smooth down her skirt, flip her hair over her shoulder and rest her little shot glass back on the bar. “Right, we going to have a dance or what?”
As she takes her friends’ hands they all but strut over to the dancefloor, and A’whora can see Bimini and Tia pulling shapes that they probably think make them look mysterious and sexy but actually just make them look as drunk as they no doubt are. Before A’whora can push through the crowd, Lawrence tugs her and Ellie back a bit.
“Here, I think I’ve remembered something Tayce told me once, if this is of any use to you?” she begins.
All of A’whora’s nerve endings light up like one of those colourful optical fiber lamps she had when she was small. Her eyes have clearly flown open and her mouth’s dropped slack without her even having to try, so desperate is she for what Lawrence is about to tell her. Ellie’s beside her equally expectant and anticipative, and Lawrence laughs at the pair of them before she continues.
“It was the pair of us and Tia…Christ, when was it…cannae mind. Think you’d gone home for the weekend and Ellie was doing something wi’ Bims…anyway, coupla’ bottles of wine in and we start playing wee stupid games. We’re doing snog, marry, avoid and Tia gives her…fuck, cannae even remember. Let’s say it was Ellie, Bimini and you. Now I can’t remember what she said for the other two but…” Lawrence pauses dramatically, and A’whora is a hair’s breadth away from practically begging her for the information she’s taking so long to impart. “…she said she would marry you because then she’d get to shag you more than just once.”
A’whora doesn’t think her eyes can go any wider but she somehow manages it. She doesn’t really know how to react but Ellie’s doing enough screaming to suffice for the two of them.
“When the fuck were you gonna tell us that?! Fuck, I can’t believe you never told me that! When did this happen?!” Ellie practically screeches in her face.
“Telt you I cannae mind! Maybe like…a month ago? I don’t know,” Lawrence supplies unhelpfully. Usually A’whora would try to rip the piss out of the way her accent’s gone ten times more Braveheart than usual after her series of drinks, but all she can think about is what she’s been told and, well…she can’t help the butterflies in her heart and the way a satisfied, triumphant grin spreads slowly onto her face.
Ellie’s equally as excited beside her. She whacks A’whora on the arm as she squeals with enthusiasm. “See! Now we know she likes you too!”
A’whora feels as if she’s made of glitter and confetti as she spins around in the direction of the bar. Her heart gives a dip on its rollercoaster of emotions as she sees that Tayce has somehow caught the attention of a different girl- long, dark hair and a blue and orange outfit and a mouth that’s moving at about a mile a minute.
There’s a second before A’whora makes to turn away in disappointment when Tayce’s pupils suddenly flick over to rest on her. Tayce’s self-assured expression and body language seem to falter when she catches A’whora’s eye, and she shoots her a little smile that- if A’whora didn’t know the girl better- she’d say was shy.
“Now the challenge is actually getting a chance to talk to her,” A’whora pouts. Chatting up Tayce and maybe getting to fall into bed with her really isn’t a time-sensitive issue; it doesn’t need to happen tonight, but A’whora’s had a chaotic combination of alcohol that makes her think there’s really no time like the present and hey, maybe this is her one and only chance.
“Well, we can keep an eye on her and when she’s free, then that’s your chance,” Ellie smiles, supportive and excited.
“What chat-up line are you gonnae use? I’ve got a cracker you can have if you want,” Lawrence insists, and A’whora and Ellie share a doubtful look.
“Go on.”
“What did one haggis say to the other haggis?” Lawrence begins. Without giving the other girls a chance to interject, she finishes. “…’Gonnae shaggis?’ ”
“And on that note,” Ellie shakes her head and rolls her eyes, taking both of them by the hand and pulling them into the crowd to join their other friends.
It’s amazing how easy it is to forget about the object of her affection chatting to random girls on the other side of the room when Bimini’s grabbing her and almost launching her across the dancefloor with their euphoric pogo-ing along to each and every song that gets played. The five of them drunkenly bum-ba-ba, bum-ba-ba along to Head & Heart and cheer for Tia when she does Nicki’s rap in Swalla without even stopping for breath. A’whora laughs in confusion with the other girls as Lawrence and Ellie get way too excited, squealing and clutching each others’ hands when some clubland tune that’s apparently much bigger in Scotland than it is in the other three corners of the UK gets put on, the lyrics of which seem to consist solely of the words up-up-up and awayyy. Bimini and Lawrence collect more drinks from the bar and A’whora very nearly knocks Ellie’s out of her hand when Friday comes on and she punches the air.
And then Tayce is on her own.
A’whora’s heart almost siezes up with how fast it jolts into full-blown palpitations because this is the moment she can finally go over and talk to her, the chance to turn their friendship into maybe something more even if that something more is only a random hookup after a night out, but it only takes the time for her to shake Ellie’s arm and point in Tayce’s direction for her to see that, yet again, she’s been approached by someone tall and confident and stunning and everything that A’whora wishes Tayce thought about her.
Her face falls and Ellie snaps her fingers in her line of vision, forcing her to look at her and the motherly expression of tough love she’s wearing.
“Hey. When has anyone ever stopped you getting your own way?” she yells at her over the music, and A’whora laughs half in amusement and half in agreement. As she falls silent, Ellie jerks her head towards the bar. “Go get her, bitch.”
It might be the alcohol, but it hits A’whora with a ironically sobering clarity that Ellie’s right.
So she takes a breath in and struts confidently over to the bar, practically able to feel the adrenaline coursing through her veins (although that could well be the caffeine from the second Jaegerbomb she’s downed this evening with Bimini’s encouragement). She smooths down her skirt so the split runs up the front of her thigh and not the side, adjusts the neck of her top so it’s framing her chest the way she wants it to. She could be nervous but the combined alcohol she’s drunk so far this evening pushes that feeling to the back of her head, replacing it with all-consuming confidence that she can feel from the inside out. She looks good, better than good, and she knows she can flirt even though she’s never really tried to flirt with Tayce. Well, never intentionally.
Okay, that’s maybe a lie.
The realisation that she’s actually going through with this is enough to make her want to freeze to the spot but by some miracle she’s still walking forward until she’s three, two, one steps away from her flatmate and the girl at the bar with too much plastic surgery and hair the shade of a vomit-coloured highlighter pen. A’whora wedges her shoulder in between the pair of them, hears the girl give a little tut/sigh hybrid from behind her but A’whora’s not really interested in bickering with her, not when Tayce’s eyes have fallen on her and she’s looking at her, really looking at her with a little playful smile on her painted lips.
“Hey baby boo,” Tayce says by way of a greeting, and A’whora feels her heart melt just a little. She’s being adorable, but she’s not going to let that damage her confident, composed exterior. Until Tayce follows up by running a hand down her arm and lacing their fingers together. “I haven’t seen you all night, I missed you.”
With that, A’whora feels the little cocky smirk she’s wearing break out into a shy grin, one that she hopes doesn’t look as ridiculously goofy as it feels. “Well. Maybe you would’ve seen more of me if you hadn’t been playing Take Me Out with half the bloody girls in here.”
“Who, me?” Tayce gasps, clutching the gold chain around her neck and pretending to be affronted. A’whora doesn’t mean to roll her eyes but she clearly does, and the small giggle she draws out of Tayce as a result makes it almost worth it. The squeeze Tayce gives her hand turns that almost into a definitely, as does what Tayce follows up with. “You’re cute when you’re jealous, you know.”
“You’re cute…all the time,” A’whora claps back, wishing she had some sort of drink in her hand to press against her face as she feels her blush start to bloom across her cheeks.
“I know, babe, that’s why I’ve been getting my drinks bought for me all night,” Tayce winks.
If Awhora uses that as a signal to pull her bank card from her bra, that’s nobody’s business but her own. The way Tayce’s gaze flicks to her chest lights a match in her heart. “Well…let me buy you one and then you won’t have to miss me so much.”
Tayce’s awed smile spreads slowly onto her face and they agree on tequila shots, the phase of the evening where they were nursing their drinks left firmly in the dust as the bartender hands them a salt shaker, two little shot glasses and two wedges of lime. The way Tayce’s tongue slides over the side of her hand before she sprinkles the salt and the way their eyes meet as she licks it up makes A’whora’s mouth dry, so the tequila’s welcome for a split second before she remembers why she hates it, the flavour and sheer strength of the alcohol akin to being hit by a truck.  
As she grabs desperately for the lime like it’s an oxygen mask on a crash-landing plane, Tayce laughs and shakes her head pityingly. “You always end up ordering tequila and you always, always hate it.”
A’whora blinks as she composes herself, gives a little shiver of recovery. She cocks her head at Tayce inquisitively. “I didn’t know you remembered that.”
Tayce looks to the ground as she smiles, tucks a piece of her long hair behind her ear. It’s endearing and soft and it makes A’whora panic, so she presses her lips together and raises an eyebrow at Tayce questioningly. “So, how’d your little episode of Blind Date go anyway?“
"Gosh, you’re really pressed about this, aren’t you?” Tayce’s eyes are narrow as she smirks at her, and now it’s A'whora’s turn to look embarrassed. The soft laugh Tayce gives is reassuring so A'whora’s gaze drifts back up again and their eyes meet as she speaks again. “Well, there was, uh…blonde lady. Blonde lady with the muscles and the eyeliner. God, what was her name?”
“This is off to a flying start.”
“Kameron!” Tayce yells in her face as she remembers. It makes A’whora snort with laughter, something that’s probably wildly unattractive but she knows Tayce has seen her do it before. “And then there was, uh, Priyanka. I remember her name because she kept telling me every two minutes. That was a wild conversation.”
“Uh-huh. Who was the bitch I elbowed out the way?”
Tayce smirks at her, wobbles a little in her heels and steadies herself against the bar. “That was…Detox.”
Tayce splutters. “Detox!”
“Should’ve called herself Botox, would’ve been nearer to the mark,” A’whora turns up her top lip. Tayce explodes in an outraged laugh beside her, clutches her wrist in a way that makes A’whora hope she won’t be able to feel her rapid pulse.
“Says Aurora Georgia Boyle, who asked for lip fillers for her eighteenth and was actually allowed to get them!”
“Don’t full name me, piece of shit!” A’whora gasps in mock-offence, shakes herself away from Tayce’s grip but finds her inexplicably nearer to her than she was before. She’s not necessarily complaining, though, because her whole left side is against Tayce’s right and there’s some form of other-worldly magnetism that seems to keep them pressed together. It makes her heart flutter so she tucks a section of hair behind her ear before she frowns. “I never told you that. How come you know that?”
“You did tell me! Back in freshers week! You just don’t remember,” Tayce giggles, poking her cheek with one acrylic nail. It should hurt more than it does. Maybe it does hurt and A’whora can’t feel it. She’s had a lot to drink.
It’s the alcohol she blames when she hooks an arm around Tayce’s waist, tilts her head and drops her volume to a murmur. “You seem to remember a lot of things about me.”
Tayce’s eyes widen just that little bit. “Well you’re a bit of an unforgettable person, really.”
Her words make A’whora’s heart light up so much that she can feel herself glowing from the inside out. She brings her other arm around Tayce in a tight hug, her hands joining at the small of her back, and Tayce mirrors her so they’re both anchoring each other. It’s hard for her to remember whether they’ve ever shared a hug like this before. It seems too intimate for friends, but A’whora doesn’t mind.
“Rory,” Tayce replies, mimicking her whine and the way she draws her name out. A’whora likes the nickname she gives her probably more than she should; she supposes it’s because only Tayce uses it and because it’s rooted in her actual given name.
A’whora pouts, squeezes Tayce’s waist. “I missed you tonight, you know.”
“Missed you too. Missed you so much,” Tayce murmurs back.
She’s already said it, A’whora knows she’s already said it, but with the way they’re both gazing at each other it seems to mean something more, something different. It’s ridiculous- they’re both drunk, and famously no good decisions have ever happened when two people have had this many assorted shots, but somehow it feels like all of this is just right.  
A’whora drops her head to rest it on Tayce’s shoulder and she feels her arms tighten around her in response. Her lips graze her neck as she murmurs against it. “Not leaving me again.”
There’s a pause where she can’t really see Tayce’s expression or how she’s reacted. Her heart freezes, and the terror and reality of having crossed the line between friendship and whatever the hell this is suddenly consumes her whole body. She’s relieved, then, when Tayce eventually mutters against the crown of her head.
“All yours, baby.”
And she presses a kiss to her hair. Just like A’whora’s been dreaming about for so long.
She feels giddy and dizzy with absolute euphoria, so it’s that she blames when she puts her lips against Tayce’s neck again and plants one, two, three little kisses there in quick succession.
“Tayce,” she whispers again. She doesn’t really know what she wants to say or how to say it, but she knows she doesn’t want to go back to the dancefloor, and she doesn’t want to be with their other friends. She just wants her and Tayce together for however long she’ll let it be that way, and she doesn’t even care about the busy bar or the drunk students that bump into them every so often or the stares from the rowdy group of rugby lads that would usually make her feel intimidated, but not when she’s with Tayce.
When she’s with Tayce everything seems a little bit better somehow, just by her being there.
So maybe it’s that, or maybe it’s the tequila, or maybe it’s the feeling of having Tayce’s arms around her that makes A’whora tilt her head back up again and meet Tayce’s waiting lips with her own. There’s none of the usual hesitation or awkward pause that comes with kissing someone new because really the amount of times A’whora’s imagined this, dreamt about it, thought about it in daydreams that completely unhook her from reality, it’s as if it’s happened before.
Nothing has prepared her for the real thing though. How Tayce brings a hand up to rest at her jaw and how the other stays placed against the bare skin of her back, warm and supportive. How the both of them sway a little, unsteady in their heels as if they’ve been knocked for six. How Tayce’s body is close against hers and A’whora pushes a hand in her hair in an attempt to somehow bring her even closer. How kissing Tayce leaves her breathtaken and satisfied yet somehow amplifies her feeling of longing, because the more she gives to her the more A’whora wants and with every second that Tayce’s lips are on hers she can only feel the heat that’s pooling in her stomach growing more and more intense.
When Tayce pulls away and A’whora can only catch her breath, she fixes her with a lazy, half-lidded smile that makes her insides turn to melted honey.
“That was nice,” she blinks, and she’s a second away from kicking herself- because, really?- when Tayce giggles softly under her breath. She brushes a little piece of A’whora’s hair off her face, and the gentleness of the action throws her a little. A’whora brings her arms up to loop around her neck, and she leans in close again. “I wanna do it again.”
“I want to do…a lot of things. With you,” Tayce says, casual and chill as if her words haven’t just sent A’whora up in flames.
“Like…maybe come back to mine and I’ll show you, baby.”
The whole moment’s perfect enough for A’whora to almost overlook the blunder Tayce has just made, but her nature dictates that she can’t let her get away with it. “We…we live together.”
Tayce lets out a snort, bumps her forehead against A’whora’s as she despairs of herself. “Right. Well…we gonna go home, then?”
A’whora doesn’t need to be asked twice. She laces her fingers in Tayce’s, resolves to text the others to tell them they’ve left, and stumbles towards the exit with her heart thumping wildly in her chest.
When she blinks, she’s tired, she’s in bed, it’s bright, and she’s confused as all hell.
The headache hits her like a sledgehammer to the face and she blinks slowly and heavily, adjusting herself to her surroundings. She’s in her own room, she can tell that much from the photos of her and her friends from back home on the cupboard and the fairy lights on her desk that aren’t switched on. Her mouth feels like a badger’s shat in it and her eyes are all achey, and as she throws an arm up to rub at them she’s surprised when she doesn’t see any leftover eye makeup on the back of her hand.
“The kraken awakes.”
“Jesus fucking Christ,” A’whora flinches, her head whipping over to the foot of her bed to find Tayce sitting cross-legged leaning against the wall, her phone in her hand. She’s wearing her old leggings with the bleach stains and the hole at the calf, and a purple tie-dye sweatshirt that’s a size too big for her. Her hair’s loose and framing her face and the only makeup she has on is the little scattering of eyeliner that’s hanging tight to her lash line and has managed to escape the makeup wipe.
She looks disarmed and shy. There’s something comforting about it, because A’whora feels confused and completely on the back foot and she has no idea what’s going on. But there’s a warm smile on her face and it meets her eyes, so despite her disorientation A’whora feels safe.
“How long’ve you been there? Were you just watching me sleep like some…creepy Twilight vampire?” A’whora groans, sitting up and leaning forward and taking a deep breath as if it’ll make her headache go away.
Tayce laughs in a way that makes A’whora think the question’s flustered her, but she’s not sure. “The others went to get breakfast. I said I’d stay with you. Didn’t want you to be on your own feeling like shit and maybe having the fear.”
“I am having the fear. I don’t even know how we got home.”
The way Tayce’s face drops in what looks like abject panic makes her wonder what did happen last night. “Wait. What do you actually remember?”
A’whora’s heart is racing as she scans her mind for memories. Pres, club, drinks, booth. Tayce talking to some girl. Dancefloor. Tayce. Talking to Tayce. Kissing Tayce-
Kissing Tayce.
“Oh, no,” A’whora blurts out involuntarily. Her eyes are wide as she looks at Tayce. “We…did we? We did?”
Tayce’s face seems to relax as she bursts out laughing, and it all comes flooding back to A’whora and hits her like a train. Everything that had seemed like such a good idea last night now seems like the most awkward situation in the world now that Tayce is here, on her bed, and they’re both sober.
“Tayce, no,” A’whora whines, putting her head in her hands as her friend keeps laughing. “No! That’s so awkward. I’m so sorry.”
“Don’t be sorry, it was a good kiss,” Tayce smiles back, somehow both coy and self-assured at once. It’s her reaction that causes a new wave of cold horror to crash against A’whora, a wave on a rock.
“Oh, Jesus. Did anything else happen?”
Tayce grows animated. “God, yeah, we had the best sex ever. Sixty-nines, scissoring, we got the vibrators involved. It was bloody lush.”
A’whora’s too hungover to realise that Tayce is winding her up until she screeches with laughter right in her horrified face. “Oh my God, Rory, your face! No I’m joking, ‘course I’m joking.”
“Thank fuck,” A’whora sighs a world-weary sigh of relief, throwing herself back down against her pillows and immediately regretting it for the way her brain ricochets against her skull and makes her headache ten times worse. “So what did happen?”
“Well, you wanted to walk back because you wanted to look at the stars, so when we got to the square we lay down and looked at the stars for a bit. And then I wanted to go get chips and cheese but you were dragging me back home because you were so horny,” Tayce looks at her pointedly, and A’whora groans with embarrassment, grabbing her pillow and shoving it over her face. “But then after we got up the stairs and in through the door you said you felt sick, so I then had to hold your hair back while you threw up last night’s pasta bake and what looked to be about fifty different kinds of alcohol into the toilet bowl. Then I had to put you to bed and stay up half the night making sure you didn’t choke on your own tongue while you were asleep. Best one night stand I’ve ever had.”
When A’whora takes the pillow away, Tayce winks at her. She feels like putting the pillow back.
“I’m honestly so sorry,” she pouts. She is sorry. Part of her wishes she could at least properly remember what it had felt like to kiss Tayce. All the memories of the moment are much too paper-thin and flimsy, butterfly wings that’re all too rapidly flying away. Tayce isn’t giving her any cause to be embarrassed, but A’whora is anyway.
So she’s not sure what Tayce is going to say when she leans forward, takes her hand and gives it a squeeze. “Go brush your teeth.”
A’whora thinks she might be the first person in history to have cause of death: cringe written on her birth certificate. “You’re really adding insult to injury, aren’t you? Telling me all the embarrassing shit I did while I was off my face and then basically telling me my breath smells like dog shite.”
Tayce laughs as she shakes her head. “Just go do it, idiot.”
She’s never been one to say no to Tayce so A’whora drags herself out from under her duvet towards the little sink tucked away in the corner of her room, the cold chill of the freezing air hitting her bare arms and her feet and rendering her even more miserable. It’s only when she’s halfway through scrubbing at her teeth when it registers that she’s even got pyjamas on.
“Did you have to put my pyjamas on for me?” A’whora asks around her toothbrush, realising all too late that trying to talk through a mouthful of toothpaste is probably as unattractive as vomiting into the toilet bowl.
(The toilet bowl is definitely worse, but she’s just thinking this to help herself feel better.)
Tayce looks up from her phone and raises an eyebrow. “Nah, you managed to do it yourself. You did make me watch you put your stick-on bra on your forehead, though. Apparently it was the funniest thing in the world.”
A’whora just groans as she turns back to the sink, spitting out the toothpaste and following it with mouthwash just to completely clean her mouth of the various alcoholic sins of the night before. She crawls back into bed with a wearied sigh, and she’s surprised when Tayce falls on her side and scoots up beside her, laying on her side and facing her so their noses are almost touching. A’whora feels her heart lift and her pulse speed up, and it’s not helped by the way Tayce reaches out and tucks a little piece of hair behind her ear.  
Tayce trails her fingers across to cup A’whora’s cheek, and she’s almost whispering when she speaks. “Thank God. Just wanted to do this again.”
When she leans in A’whora shuts her eyes, meets her halfway, and feels every cell in her body electrify when their lips touch. If kissing Tayce in a club when they were both drunk was good, then kissing her hungover in bed is somehow even better, and A’whora’s mystified at the way her headache seems to completely disappear with every second she spends with her lips on Tayce’s, kissing her gently and softly as if they’ve got all the time in the world. Tayce smells of everything comforting- Tresemme shampoo, snow fairy shower gel, the fabric softener she uses that’s way too expensive for a student budget. Fresh and clean and somehow new. It’s the simplest heaven A’whora has ever experienced.
Tayce pulls away and they both giggle, embarrassment and awkwardness gone now that the elephant in the room’s been addressed. A’whora only realises Tayce has taken her hand when she lets it go, pushes herself off the mattress and crosses the room towards the door.
“We should do that again some time,” she smiles wickedly by way of a goodbye, and A’whora can only nod bashfully in reply and agreement. Tayce has given her hope to hold on to, and she knows she’s going to cling to it ridiculously until whatever this is happens again.
She can’t wait.
Just as Tayce opens her door and A’whora resigns herself to her leaving, she lifts her head off the pillow when she hears her flatmate’s voice again as she disappears into the hallway.
“And go have a shower. You smell like tequila.”
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ultradoux · 8 months ago
Why is “Dia duit” pronounced like that?
We on Gaelblr really love (and for good reason) to moan and gripe whenever those awful “Haha Irish is FAKE wtf is this spelling” posts pop up again and again. After all, we all know that once you figure how séimhiú/urú and caol le caol, leathan le leathan work, the language is very phonetic, much more so than English or French. 
And then you look at Dia duit/Dia daoibh. 
Now, caveat, I’m not Irish, and I’m far from an expert on the language (anyone who wants to chip in with useful info is welcome!) For all I know this is an issue covered very early in the Irish schools, and I’m over here trying to reinvent the wheel. But for those of us learning on our own, the fact that “Dia duit” is not lenited in writing yet is pronounced as if it were can throw us for a loop. Are the assholes who refuse to learn how to say Siobhán and who have made Saoirse Ronan’s life hell on every chat show since 2007 actually right? Are the rules arbitrary? Is Irish unpronounceable?? 
Obviously not. Yet again, it’s all about the dialects. 
Basically, each dialect has its own way of pronouncing the “d” in the declensions of “do” (if you’re just beginning in Irish 1) Congratulations!! Amazing!! and 2) prepositions like “do” (meaning “to/for” in English) are declined based on the person they apply to, i.e. “duit” = “do” + “tú”, “to/for you”, etc. It’s less complicated than it sounds but is also off topic!). In Ulster Irish, the declensions are not lenited, and would be pronounced as “D”s (is this why everyone studies Ulster Irish?). In Connacht, however, it’s the opposite -- these words are always lenited, meaning that “duit” and “daoibh” are pronounced with the back of the throat sound that usually comes out as “gwitch” for learners (believe me, I’ve been there). This is why the phrase is sometimes written “Dia dhuit”/”Dia dhaoibh”, by the way. And then there’s Munster Irish, which dances around a bit, not leniting in some cases but then doing it in others, including after vowels -- meaning that it’s “Dia dhuit” in Munster, too. When forced to choose between the variants, the creators of the Caighdeán Oifigiúil decided to opt for the non-lenited “duit/daoibh” -- yet, due to the strong presence of the other two dialects, especially in the Republic, everyone lenites it anyways. Got a headache yet? 
So what does this mean for you and your Irish? Is it Dia duit or Dia dhuit -- and what about pronouncing “duit” outside of this expression? It seems that pronouncing it as “Dia dhuit” is the go-to choice across the board (I’ve been told that “Dia duit” is not commonly used as a greeting in Ulster Irish -- is this confirmed?), so we might as well all hop on that train as learners. As for the declensions of “do” in other contexts, however -- well, it depends on your preferred dialect! Within the Gaeltachts, the rules will follow what I’ve written before (although obviously with much more detail/linguistic structure -- I’m just trying to fill my Tuesday morning between work assignments here, guys). If you’re just trying to get a grasp on the language, though, keeping the non-lenited “d” sound will work just fine, too. 
Hope that helps someone out there -- it’s taken me years to figure out why it works like this! Slán go fóill!
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mcytwriters · 4 months ago
[archive] in this together || dreamwastaken x gn!reader  
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written by @/cannicorn [no longer active]
warnings: Negative thoughts, talk of being sad/stuck in slumps, harassment (not sexual), arguments
word count: 4.8k
disclaimer: mcytwriters is not claiming this work as our own, we are reposting it for archive purposes only
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Alright, so maybe Clay was a little jealous. He wasn’t possessive- he swore, it was just that [Y/n] had been spending an awful lot of their time with George lately, and Clay couldn’t help it.
He knew George wouldn’t do something like that, George was his best friend, he had been there for every stage of their relationship together, when Clay had finally realized he liked [Y/n], when he mustered up the courage to ask them out, when they met in person for the first time, George had always been there. So rationally, there was no way George was purposely doing this, he wouldn’t do that to Clay, knowing how much he liked [Y/n]. But Clay wasn’t thinking rationally, it had been a long week and [Y/n] had been busy with college, and yeah they had spent some time on call that week but their schedules seemed so conflicting lately. 
Clay had to do so much editing and filming to get his new video out this week, and it was finals season again, plus sports season for [Y/n], and luckily they were in the final games, but as soon as they played their last game [Y/n] had plans to study because exams would follow in the next weeks. George on the other hand had a much different sleep schedule than them, living in the UK, but it had started to align with [Y/n]’s more and more because they were constantly staying up late to finish homework. And [Y/n] usually stayed on call with Clay to focus, preferring the background noise and comfort of someone with them while they did their homework, so when they saw George active on discord, they had no excuse not to call (George didn’t mind, he did the same with Clay, what difference did it make?) So yeah, they had barely been able to call or watch their show or do anything this week, and [Y/n] seemed to be spending a lot more time with George, and now Clay was starting to get jealous.
He looked over to the clock that sat on the corner of his computer screen, seeing the 1:50 AM in bright white lettering. He had finally finished editing, but he wasn’t tired yet. His sleep schedule was just as fucked up as [Y/n]’s was, if he was gonna be honest, but he liked to spend the later hours of the night in silence, either that or he tried to sleep and help his hopeless sleep schedule.
As he glanced over his computer, looking for things to entertain himself this late into the night, he skimmed through his discord, checking for old notifications. Clicking on the discord server that he had with his closest friends, he scrolled through the recent messages in the chat. Most were just talking about plans for recording or chatting about their days, but he noticed that one of the VCs was active. He had a good idea of who was in VC, as much as he didn’t want to believe it, seeing both George and [Y/n] sitting there with a music bot confirmed his suspicions. 
Don’t get him wrong, he loves George and he’s definitely in love with [Y/n], but still, they had been hanging out so much recently, and he was starting to feel a little weight on his chest whenever he thought about how much time they spent together. He couldn’t place a name on the feeling, but it sat at the bottom of his chest, weighing him down in mood and whenever he moved. Whenever he thought about it he just lost his motivation to do anything, resolving to sit around and sulk about it.
But this was his chance! He could hang out with [Y/n] and see what George talked about with them, and maybe it would settle the feeling in his chest. (Deep down, he knew going into VC would just make it worse, he knew it would cause him to feel worse at the sight of their dynamic and how well they got along- not that Clay and [Y/n] didn’t get along, sometimes he just forgot that [Y/n] was his and his only). 
The sound of the discord notification rang in his and the other’s ears as he joined VC, and Clay could almost hear [Y/n] perk up when they saw his name. He couldn’t lie, that settled the weight in his chest, just a little, the way [Y/n]’s mood seemed to become a little happier whenever they were together.
But soon that relief went away when he heard the two talking.
“I just don’t get it, if N is- Oh! Hey Clay!” [Y/n] said upon his entrance.
“Dream,” George said, dragging out the end of his name.
Right. [Y/n] had been asking George for help on their college work, not Dream, cause he wasn’t able to talk as much. (He also wasn’t a big fan of math, which [Y/n] knew, but he elected to ignore that, in favor of focusing on the negative).
“Um, hey. What are you two talking about?”
“My work for math class. I really despise this teacher, I told you about what they said in class the other day right?” No, they didn’t.
“Uh, I don’t think so. Go on,” He said, trying to stay optimistic.
“He said that since we’re online for final exams, to prevent cheating the teachers are making everyone take the test in the same time margin. Worldwide. Which for me isn’t a huge problem since I live in America, but we have to stay in my class until 2 AM for everyone to finish the test, so that I don’t go off and text someone the test before they start. Like what bull is that? Why not just teach us that we don’t have to cheat!”
“What the hell? That’s so fucked up, I’m so happy I graduated early.”
“You should be,” [Y/n] said, sighing and seeming to return to their work.
“How was editing going?” George piped up, after a bit of silence while everyone did their own thing.
“Boring, but I think I’ve finished. I might send it to you guys to watch it before I post it to make sure it’s good, cause I’ve been editing late until I get tired, and I’m afraid I didn’t catch stuff.”
“You confuse me,” [Y/n] said, “Why do you edit so late? Your sleep schedule worries me sometimes,”
“You’re the one who’s up at 2 AM on a Tuesday doing homework when you most definitely have classes tomorrow.”
“Yeah, but that’s justified!” [Y/n] retorted, the air starting to get tense, the playfulness draining out of their voices.
“Yeah, but so is my schedule, I’m grown and my responsibilities are different,” before [Y/n] and Clay could go any further, George interrupted, in favor of them not fighting in front of him.
“I mean, at least you don’t have Tubbo’s sleep schedule, have you talked to him recently? He wakes up at like 6 PM my time. He doesn’t even care, he’s living the life!”
[Y/n] chuckled stiffly, “Yeah, I wish,” and then, “Hey, can I send a pic of this problem in general cause I just don’t get it.”
“Sure,” George said, and Clay zoned out for a bit as he helped [Y/n] with their homework.
He knew that [Y/n] was only saying that to look out for him, cause they were honestly worried about him. He knew that because [Y/n] cared too much sometimes, and often forgot to take care of themselves. It was their fatal flaw, but sometimes Clay just thinks too fast, cause he’s human, sometimes humans snap. Although this snap was barely anything, compared to the inevitable conversation of what had happened. Jeez, he thought, we can’t even start a conversation without arguing. 
“Dream? You good? You’ve been awfully quiet,” Clay was pulled out of his thoughts by George’s voice, noticing that he hadn’t been chiming into their conversation, which had long since moved on from math.
“Yeah, sorry. Just tired,” He said, making an excuse.
“Maybe you should go to sleep,” [Y/n] said, hesitating as to not start another argument.
And he almost did retort something that would start another argument, about how [Y/n] doesn’t have to worry about his sleep schedule, but that was just unnecessary, and he was just tired and grumpy, right? So he mumbled a goodbye and shut off his computer, opting to sleep on the couch in his office to not interrupt anyone sleeping this late, although he didn’t get a wink of sleep.
Maybe it was the business that came with finals or new updates with “the Dream Team,” but [Y/n] and Clay rarely got to talk one and one in the upcoming weeks. Other than their dry conversations that consisted of “Did you see ____?” or sending each other TikTok and memes, they didn’t talk at all. When they were in VCs with other people on their server it was tense between them, even if others couldn’t tell. 
The worst part was, Clay, didn’t even know how to talk about it. 
“How do I even start the conversation? ‘Hey [Y/n] we haven’t had a conversation that consists of more than 50 words for the past 2 weeks, can we talk about that?’ How do I even go about this?” Clay complained, his head his hands.
Across the breakfast table, Sapnap spoke.
“I mean, maybe you should just hint at it? Start a normal conversation, I dunno? Just be like ‘Hey, we haven’t talked recently,’ and let it play out?”
“Dude, I’ve tried.”
“Be patient?”
“I believe in you,” He said, a hint of sarcasm.
Clay chuckled and looked up from his hands, “Yeah, thank you. It’ll be fine, she’s probably just stressed from exams and sports.”
“Yeah, relax for now, plus, you’re in a long-distance relationship. Things are bound to get rough sometimes, but you guys are Clay and [Y/n]. George and I have been waiting for this to happen since like last year.”
Sapnap was already up from his table, scrambling to wash his dish, “I’m not getting kicked out just yet,” and then he was gone.
Meanwhile [Y/n] was busy- or rather, quite the opposite, they had plenty of work to do, but instead they were procrastinating. From talking to Clay, from doing homework, from living. They finished their final games for sports, [Y/n] had thought they did well, using the fact that they scored twice in their game as an excuse to relax. For about a week, they used that excuse, until in their roommate’s words, they “needed to go outside! Refresh your mind! Walk a dog! I don’t know, but you can’t sulk all day, otherwise, I’m gonna shove your homework up your ass. I get the hype, but watching TikTok all day instead of graduating is not the path you want to take,” It was a little violent, but effective nevertheless (plus, [Y/n] did not want to explain to their roommate that they currently weren’t on the best terms with their boyfriend.
It’s not that Clay and [Y/n] had been fighting (well they had, but not constantly), it was more that they seemed to be skirting around each other recently. And [Y/n] was already so stressed with everything going on recently, and they could feel themselves slipping into another slump.
Every time something seemed to get better and people were there for them, [Y/n] would feel themselves start to slip. It made no sense, they were happy, content, perfectly satisfied with their life, and then suddenly it would get bad again. And just the thought that it was getting worse seemed to push them deeper into this black hole that constantly sucked them deeper, even when they made progress.
Clay was supposed to be there as well, he was the one who told [Y/n] needed a support system, someone to fall back on. They had been dating for what? 3 months? And here they were, back again in the same situation, stressed with finals. This time around though, [Y/n] was supposed to have Clay to fall back on, but they didn’t. They couldn’t just blame Clay for it though, there were a ton of factors, and [Y/n] was frankly being a dumbass as well.
They knew it would be hard, this long-distance thing. They knew about it before they started dating, Sapnap and Clay’s plans to move in together had been in place for months, [Y/n] knew this was irrational. But they were stressed.
In summary, to randomly go off on a tangent about boy problems to excuse laziness would not help [Y/n]’s situation. Their roommate would tell them they had to talk to Clay eventually and that they should do it now and so on (Logically, [Y/n] knew that was the rational answer to their problems, but they chose not to face that).
When their roommate had suggested they go outside, walk a dog (they didn’t have a dog), do something, they slumped out of bed and made themselves somewhat presentable to go out to get coffee or something.
“I’m heading out to get coffee across campus. Trying the new coffee shop we’ve been putting off for a while,”
Their roommate, Alex, looked up, “Oh nice! Can you get me something? My only request is that it has caffeine, I’ve got my art history exam tomorrow and I’m gonna be up all night,”
“Yep, gotcha, take care though, alright?”
“I could say the same to you,” They deadpanned.
“I’m going now!” They sing-songed as they closed the door to the hallway of their building.
[Y/n] stepped outside of their apartment building and took a quick look at their phone before deciding to ditch the directions, they were gonna find their way to the Cafe. It was on campus anyway, so it’d be hard to get lost, especially walking. They had considered taking a bus, but in favor of getting out of their room and “being all spontaneous and shit,” they decided to walk.
The coffee shop was located in south quad, which essentially was the worst part of campus. The people there were nice, [Y/n] had plenty of friends who took majors that were located in south quad and had to stay in dorms their freshman year, but the buildings were located so far from the main campus that it was almost vacated aside from a few shops.
[Y/n] supposes that’s why it had been so hard to actually get up and try this new place, it was across campus and there was nothing around it, and since the majority of their friends were either sophomores or upperclassmen, they had no one who lived in the dorms there to hang out with.
The weather was mostly nice, it was sunny and the ground was damp from rain the past few days. It helped brighten [Y/n]’s mood as they walked, but as they got farther from their dorm, they started to feel like they were being watched.
Not only did south quad not have many stores, since no one willingly chose to live in the apartments or houses near south campus, it was usually not super busy. So the feeling of being watched was especially strange. But [Y/n] continued walking, figuring they were feeling unwell from not being out much lately. Plus, the small cafe was in sight now, and [Y/n] was hungry.
Ordering the food was quick, although the waiting was a little nerve-wracking. [Y/n] really couldn’t shake the feeling that they were being watched. Once they grabbed their food, they quickly started walking home, and as soon as they were outside of sight and hearing distance of the cafe, things went south (this time, a little more figuratively).
“You gonna eat that?” [Y/n] froze. From right behind them, a raspy voice spoke. 
Without turning around they murmured a little “Yep,” and started walking quicker.
But this time when they spoke, the person came into view, identifying themself. A woman, no taller than 5’ 8” (173 cm) stood in front of [Y/n]. Her eyes were bloodshot and when she smiled her face tilted, giving her an aggressive stance.
“You sure?” [Y/n] backed away, but the person stepped forward, and that’s when they realized the woman had a knife in her hand. [Y/n] froze.
“Yeah, I’m sure,” The shake in their voice was clear when they spoke.
The woman advanced again and placed a hand on [Y/n]’s shoulder. If it weren’t for their instincts in this situation, where the person holding their harm was also holding a knife, they would’ve jerked away immediately. But they didn’t, they stood perfectly still and assessed the situation.
“Listen, all I need is a few things-” as she spoke, [Y/n] looked at the person, more specifically, their stance and their body, “-and it’s not much! I’m just trying to make my way along-” she looked strong, but [Y/n] figured she wasn’t the fittest, considering her dirty reek and red eyes, “-but I need some money, just for food-” if they run now, with no warning, could [Y/n] outrun her? “-and if I don’t get that, there might be some consequences-” they didn’t have much of a choice, did they? “-you got that?” 
[Y/n] paused for a second, as if they were waiting to answer, but then they took off.
Running as fast as they could, [Y/n] bolted to the most populated area they could find nearby. Unlucky for them, they were in south quad, and they were only about halfway to the nearest store. But [Y/n] didn’t look back, and kept sprinting until they reached the shops with people nearby, earning a few weird looks when they finally stopped and crouched to catch their breath. They quickly took in their surroundings, making sure the lady was nowhere in sight.
[Y/n] spotted an empty bench, and resolved to rest for a bit to calm down. They would need to call someone to pick them up, because there was no way they wanted to walk home now, with well over half of their walk home left. Out of muscle memory, they opened their phone contacts and called Clay.
He picked up before [Y/n] realized that he was not even in-state, nowhere close [Y/n], and in no way able to pick them up.
“Um, hi,” Shit. Their voice was still shaking. Or maybe it had just started shaking.
“Are you alright?”
“I- I didn’t mean to call you,” Shit again. That’s not what they meant to say, they were just in a tense situation and blurted it.
“Oh,” He said, his voice suddenly much smaller.
“I mean- that’s not what I meant, I don’t mind talking to you, I- I just needed to call someone to take me home, and uh, muscle memory, if you know what I mean,”
“Oh,” This time Clay’s voice was much less small, “Are you alright? Why do you need to be picked up?”
“Um, well,” [Y/n] paused, this was a lot to take at once, they needed a minute, “I just- I just feel unsafe right now. That’s all. I don’t feel safe walking home,”
Clay could tell there was more to it, but he didn’t pry, “Oh,” He needed to stop saying ‘oh,’ “Do you wanna text your roommate then? Or someone who can pick you up?”
“Yeah, I’ll shoot them a text, give me a sec,” This time, when they navigated through their contacts, [Y/n] selected someone who was in state. 
To -> Alex
Hey, r u able to pick me up?
Usually, Alex responded within a few moments and considering they were at home and “studying” right now, [Y/n] figured they wouldn’t hesitate to pick up the phone if it buzzed.
[Y/n] almost forgot they were still on call with Clay until he spoke, 
“Did you text Alex?”
“Yeah,” They responded plainly.
The silence that followed was painful. [Y/n] and Clay hadn’t been speaking much lately, and now they had called him out of the blue, and they didn’t even know how to start a conversation. What had become of them?
At the same time as [Y/n] said, “So, how are you?” Clay blurted, “Why haven’t we talked much recently?”
“You can go first,” [Y/n] spoke first, breaking the awkward quiet.
“Uh, I’m good. Sorry for asking a weird question.”
“Yeah, um. I’m glad you’re good. Sorry, we haven’t talked much, I guess I’ve just been busy with exams and stuff. Sorry.”
“Or have you been busy talking to George,” Clay mumbled, just loud enough so [Y/n] could hear.
“Oh, uh, I said, I hope you’ve been taking care of yourself,” Even if [Y/n] hadn’t blatantly heard what Clay had said, they could’ve detected that lie.
“No, I heard you. But what? Is this why you were grumpy that night a few weeks ago? Cause I was talking to George? Listen, I’m sorry if I’ve been busy lately and my schedule has lined-”
“It doesn’t matter anymore, don’t worry about it. I figured you were busy.”
“Come on Clay, we can’t just breeze past this like we haven’t been talking to each other for the past two weeks! You’re obviously bothered by it, speak your mind,” [Y/n] urged.
“I told you, it doesn’t matter, I was thinking irrationally,” He retorted.
“Your feelings aren’t irrational,” Back and forth,
“Stop! Why are you just being so kind? Why can’t you just snap?” 
“Cause I care about you, and you’re valid,”
“But you are too! Remember when I told you you needed people to rely on? [Y/n], I can tell it’s getting bad again. I know you, and I don’t want to pry, I don’t want to force you to tell me things, but I want you to be able to fall back on me. You don’t have to explain yourself to call me in the middle of the night when you’re crying because you’re doubting yourself again. I’ll be there.”
“I- Ok, you’re right. But you’re also making this about me, what were you saying about George? Is that the entire reason you were grumpy?”
“Stop trying to change the subject,” 
“Oh, I’m trying to change the subject?” Things were getting tense now, and they knew they should’ve stayed calm, but this was what he wanted, wasn’t it? Didn’t Clay want them to snap?
“Why do you care so much about George? I told you to move on, it doesn’t matter anymore!”
“But it did, and we weren’t talking, so it matters now! If-”
“It doesn’t matter,” He insisted.
“Fine, right, it doesn’t matter. I have to go anyways, gotta get home somehow, right?” Annoyance seeped in [Y/n]’s words as they hung up. They shouldn’t have snapped, but it was a long time coming, and Clay encouraged it. That doesn’t mean it was deserved, it didn’t matter whether it was deserved, what mattered right now was that [Y/n] went home and finished their work.
But Alex hadn’t responded. And when [Y/n] called Alex, they were immediately sent to voicemail, 3 times. And then suddenly, someone had grabbed [Y/n]’s arm, and their attention was no longer even close to focus on the conversation they just had, but the lady standing in front of them.
Clay shouldn’t have said that. He shouldn’t have encouraged that. He wanted [Y/n] to get mad, he wanted them to be able to talk, to ramble and scream all their heart out if they wanted, but not in that way, never in that way. But he walked into it didn’t he? He told them to snap, to release it. And now he was trying to edit his video, but he wasn’t really, because he was just staring straight at his screen.
That was until he received a call from [Y/n]. He glanced at his phone, debating whether to pick it up or not. They were the one who hung upon him, so he was supposed to pick up right? But he was supposed to be mad, they had just fought. He pondered, for too long, because the phone’s rings faded out, and he sighed. But soon enough, the call rang through his ears again, and [Y/n] was calling again. This time, he picked up immediately. If they were calling more than once, something could be wrong, seriously wrong.
When he picked up the phone, heavy breathing filled his ears.
“[Y/n]? You ok?”
“Yeah-” Their voice was raspy, they cleared their throat, “Yeah, sorry. I- I called you on muscle memory again, sorry, I can go-”
“Don’t go, where are you? Why are you out of breath?”
“Lady followed me,” They spoke quickly, stopping to catch their breath.
“What lady?”
“Um. The one from before,”
“Before? Like when you first called me?”
“[Y/n] has someone been following you this whole time?” Clay asked, urgency in his tone.
“And you didn’t tell me?”
“I’m sorry, I wasn’t thinking,” They said quietly, tears welling in their eyes. Very suddenly, everything was crashing down on them, and they started hiccuping, trying to keep in their tears.
“Don’t- You shouldn’t feel sorry, [Y/n], it wasn’t your fault, ok? Breath with me, 4 seconds in,” He breathed in, “hold for another 4,” [Y/n] was hastily following, their breaths uneven, “out for 8, right now do it again, you’ve got this,” He reassured.
When their breaths started evening out more, Clay spoke again, “Are you safe?”
[Y/n] nodded, but then realized Clay couldn’t see them. They hummed instead, their voice still shaky as tears fell from their eyes.
“Ok, ok, that’s good. Are you home?”
“No,” Their voice was quiet.
“Ok, can you call someone? Get them to take you home?”
“Alex didn’t respond,”
“Can you call an Uber?”
“I-uh, I don’t have an account,” [Y/n] slumped, people always told them to make one, something about how they would need it, but they had always figured they would be on campus, therefore they didn’t need a ride anywhere.
“Ok, I’ll get one, give me a minute, can you send me your location? So I can get the uber to the right place,” Clay said, and his phone dinged. Typing filled their ears as he booked an uber on the website, and then he turned back to his phone.
“It’ll be there in 10 minutes. In the meantime, do you want me to distract you? Or do you want to talk about it?”
“I already told you everything,”
“You’re still crying though, something is still bothering you,”
“Oh. I don’t know why I’m crying,” They said.
“So then just speak, ramble, get mad or cry or both, just talk. It’ll help, I promise.”
So that’s what they did. [Y/n] rambled, about how stressed they were, about how the fact that they hadn’t talked well for the past few weeks had made them anxious, how much they worried for Clay, they talked, and they could’ve gone on for much longer than 10 minutes, had their uber not arrived. (They did go on for longer, when [Y/n] arrived home, after they hugged their roommate and ordered their comfort food. They spoke to Clay for hours, and both of them rambled. They let each other know what made them feel sad or jealous or happy, and they communicated.)
Clay <- 05/16/21 3:15PM
how did ur last exam go? 
Clay -> 05/16/21 3:17PM
i finished exams yesterday afternoon i thought i told u?
Clay <- 05/16/21 3:18PM
oh i thought ur last 1 was today, from 1 to 3 PM
Clay -> 05/16/21 3:19PM
weird, well, it wasn’t, anyway, can u open the front door? my hands are full
Clay <- 05/16/21 3:19PM
wrong person, think you meant to text Alex
Clay -> 05/16/21 3:20PM
nope, right person, now pls get the door
“[Y/n] what the fuck are you doing here?”
“That’s the response I get? For surprising you?”
Clay smiled in return, and then he scooped [Y/n] up and hugged them. [Y/n] hugged him back, murmuring a quiet, ‘I love you’ into his chest.
“I love you, too.”
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lilydalexf · 7 months ago
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Old School X is a project interviewing X-Files fanfic authors who were posting fic during the original run of the show. New interviews are posted every Tuesday.
Interview with Rae
Rae has 16 stories at Gossamer. If you like MSR, you should go check them out, including (but not limited to) the fun-titled, banter-filled The Cat, an Espresso and a Bag of Sunflower Seeds. Big thanks to Rae for doing this interview.
Does it surprise you that people are still interested in reading your X-Files fanfics and others that were posted during the original run of the show (1993-2002)?
It surprises me that anyone reads my fanfic at all, let alone they are reading it 20 years after I wrote it!
But in the same vein, I am still actively reading xfiles fanfic and I tend to read the older fics, or new fics by authors I recognize or remember from back in the day. I cannot explain this lack of rationale. 🤷
What do you think of when you think about your X-Files fandom experience? What did you take away from it?
I had a great experience with the X-Files fandom! I made some fantastic friends - many even attended my wedding! I didn't really get involved in the dramas that went on. I was aware of it, but really, I just wanted to discuss my show with people that loved it like I did and read the fic, so I ignored all the other static.
Social media didn't really exist during the show's original run. How were you most involved with the X-Files online (atxc, message board, email mailing list, etc.)?
Mainly message boards. AOL chat rooms, Yahoo groups, etc. We would all sign on after the episode aired and chat about it. Deconstruct it. And then we started traveling to meet each other and the real fun began!
What did you take away from your experience with X-Files fic or with the fandom in general?
It was definitely a growing experience. It forced me to step outside my comfort zone a little bit. Traveling to NYC, LA and Chicago to meet people just to fangirl with. Meeting Gillian and getting a picture with her - it was wild.
Different shared experiences that "real life" family and friends just didn't understand. It was fun and exciting.
What was it that got you hooked on the X-Files as a show?
So I came to the show late in the game. I was sick, lying in bed channel surfing and caught the last 5 minutes of Fight the Future and immediately wanted to know why this woman was sitting in the snow holding onto this man. I spent the summer recording episodes on FX during the week and watching them all weekend and was somehow able to pretty much catch up on the first 6 seasons in time for the 7th season premiere.
What got you involved with X-Files fanfic?
In my quest to know all the things that summer before the 7th season, I discovered AOL chat rooms that led me to different discussions on the show in general and at one point, a link was posted to whatever fanfic was hot that minute and I was instantly hooked.
What is your relationship like now to X-Files fandom?
I often feel like a wallflower at a party. I'm on the fringe, looking in to see what's going on. I don't bother anyone and most people don't even know I'm there. Every now and then I'll send feedback on a story, or I might even participate in a random discussion, but I feel it's a little more difficult these days without the chatrooms and discussion boards. Following people on tumblr or twitter and trying to engage in those platforms is more awkward since it feels so much more personal. It's like I'm intruding on someone's personal space.  Or having to scroll through non-fandom stuff to find the fic. The message boards were a more even playing field I guess? It's hard to explain.
When I'm hardcore searching for something...anything to read, I'll refer to "The Classics" list. There are still many on there I haven't read.
I miss ephemeral.
Were you involved with any fandoms after the X-Files? If so, what was it like compared to X-Files?
No. No other characters have ever interested me beyond the story we're given within the confines of the show/movie/book like Mulder and Scully did. My friends would dive into Harry Potter or Marvel or (fill in the blank with anything) and I would try to get excited, but there's nothing.
Who are some of your favorite fictional characters? Why?
Well, Scully because she's so bad-ass. She's always so certain of her convictions. We don't see her second-guess herself often.
Anne of Green Gables because against all odds, she still sees the beauty in everything.
Jo in Little Women because she is just so tenacious. She knows what she wants.
Hermione in Harry Potter. She knows the most important thing she'll do is help Harry and there is value in that, so she gives it all she's got.
Do you ever still watch The X-Files or think about Mulder and Scully?
I do. A couple of years after the original run was over, I lost a dear friend (met because of XF) and then later I had my first baby and life just got busy in a very different way so I fell out of the fandom and just dropped all of it.
And then there was the revival. I waited until all episodes aired and then binge-watched them. And I did the same with season 11, but waited about 6 mos after it aired to watch it, rewatching the whole series from the beginning, first.
But now I turn it on a few times a week while I'm folding laundry or making dinner or some other chore. It's nice to have it on in the background because I don't have to pay close attention because I know what's going to happen. I've actually watched the whole series a few times this way.
Do you ever still read X-Files fic? Fic in another fandom?
I still read XF fic. It's still my favorite thing to read. I am always looking for the next great fic to lose myself in. Back in the day, I would read any pairing, any genre...I was game for anything, as long as it was XF fic. I'm a little more choosy, now, but only because my free-time is more limited. I only want to read MSR and I'm not at all interested in revival fics.
Do you have any favorite X-Files fanfic stories or authors?
I am partial to the novel-length AU and canon-divergent stories.  I love everything by Prufrock's Love and Bonetree. I have read Paracelsus, A Moment in the Sun and the Goshen/Secret World series countless times. Journal 1999 and Journal 2000 by MD1016, The Mastodon Diaries by akaJake, Blinded by White Light by Dashak, Deliverance From Evil by Char Chaffin and Tess.
I could go on all day.
My absolute favorite story is Arizona Highways by Fialka.
I am partial to Scully angst. And the Emily storyline just kills me, so when authors take those elements and write a kick-ass story, I am there for it.
What is your favorite of your own fics, X-Files and/or otherwise?
How awful is it that I had to look up my fics to answer this question? I don't know that I have a favorite. That's like asking a mother which child she favors. Maybe One of the Damned.
Do you think you'll ever write another X-Files story? Or dust off and post an oldie that for whatever reason never made it online?
I won't say never, but I don't think so. I've tried to start one or two with some ideas I've had, but I haven't gotten far with them.
Do you still write fic now? Or other creative work?
No. I don't even have time to read as often as I would like to.
Where do you get ideas for stories?
Usually what if scenarios - I try to work out different ways the story could go in my head. I would usually have the guts of the story written in my head before I typed the first word.
What's the story behind your pen name?
There was already a well-known Rachel posting fic when I got started, so I just decided to go with a nickname - Rae.
Do your friends and family know about your fic and, if so, what have been their reactions?
My husband is crazy supportive and tries to convince me to write again All. The. Time. I never hid my XF obsession from anyone, but I don't think I told many people about my writing.
Is there a place online (tumblr, twitter, AO3, etc.) where people can find you and/or your stories now?
I am on tumblr and twitter, but like I said above, I don't really post. All of my stories are at Gossamer.
(Posted by Lilydale on February 9, 2021)
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rosaliepostsstuff · 8 months ago
Chapter 7 - Of testing the waters, special snowflakes and weirdly long showers
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series masterlist
tags:  @weasleysbees ; @gloryekaterina​ ; @thatguppienamedbae​ ; @sagittarius-flowerchild​​; @hufflepuff5972​ ; @pandaxnienke​ ;  @izzyyy-1
if you’d like to be added/removed, send a DM or an ask
warnings: probably swearing, mentions of food and eating, allusion to masturbation (which you can choose to interpret differently) word count: 2902
If you have any feedback, please let me know!
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  You walked out of the shower still lightheaded, but also weirdly ecstatic.
There were a few girls in the bathroom now, you reckoned it must’ve been past curfew if people were starting to get ready for bed. Walking up the spiralled steps to your room, you had half a mind to poke your head into the common room, as if some force was pulling you there. You felt as if you were absolutely out of your mind, you didn’t trust your brain. You also had felt this need to see George, even just briefly, as if you missed him already. You managed to pull yourself together, though.
You stepped into your room to Angelina, Alicia and Katie already there. You overthought what kind of greeting to use and instead said nothing, moving onto your evening routine.
“What’s up with you, weirdo?” Angelina asked endearingly with a slight chuckle, studying your figure. “What do you mean?” you asked back, trying to sound casual, hiding your face while you pretended to look for something in your dresser. “You look… tense,” Alicia quipped, giving the other girls a look. “Tense? Naah, I’m chill,” you turned to them and waved your hand around wildly. “Clearly,” Angelina agreed, nodding her head. “How was detention?”
You froze while pulling your bed covers back to slip into them.
Admitting you were in love with George to yourself was relatively easy, you knew it once you felt it. That was it. Sure, it was weird and new, but you’d have time to come to terms with it. Admitting to the girls, however – that was something else. For years you denied having any feelings for George, and whenever any of them suggested you two getting together in the future, you mocked them. You couldn’t just admit to them now that they were right in the end.
“We, uh- scrubbed cauldrons,” you replied. “Uh-huh, and how was scrubbing cauldrons with George?” Katie questioned with a glint in her eye. They were onto something, but you wouldn’t give in.
“Extremely boring and uneventful,” you answered, sticking out your tongue to them, then disappeared underneath your blanket.
Falling asleep that night proved easier than you thought. You had been worried that all the excitement and your heart running wild would keep you up for long, but soon after the girls stopped chatting you drifted away. Images of George in your mind kept a dorky smile on your face, as you hugged the stuffed panda he got you all those years ago tight.
  Next morning you woke up with a jolt. You freshened up and subconsciously put in a bit more effort into your appearance – you felt good. Your thoughts were still mostly monothematic. You decided to give yourself some time to figure out your feelings before telling anyone, or worse – acting on them. But that didn’t mean you weren’t excited to see George, after what felt like an eternity.
You buttoned up your school cardigan, wondering if he’d be at breakfast. Fred and he had first period free on a few days of the week, including Tuesday, thanks to the small number of classes they took, so you couldn’t be sure.
Your heart skipped a beat when you saw him at the table, though, focused on his breakfast.
“Morning,” you greeted cheerfully, slipping into the seat next to him. You hopped over the bench graciously even though you had a skirt on, as others greeted you back. “You’re in a good mood, take it you slept off well?” George pointed out, his voice still a bit sleepy, and took a bite out of his toast.
You picked out some food and poured yourself some tea with a smile, thinking back to what good sleep you had and what kind of dreams it brought you.
“Slept off?” “You said you were really tired last night, you left dinner first and I didn’t see you later in the common room,” he noted. “Ahh,” you agreed, taking a sip of your tea. So you would’ve found him in the common room, you though. “Yeah, had a good sleep. You?” “Mmm, so-so,” he replied, gesturing with his hand. “Fred and I worked on the Fever Fudge until pretty late.” “You could’ve slept a bit longer, when do you start classes..?” You queried, hoping for a certain answer in the back of your mind. “Yeah, but we have no classes together until afternoon, I’d have only seen you at lunch before that,” he explained, stuffing his mouth casually, “you walked off so suddenly I wanted to know you were alright.” You had to bite the inside of your cheek to stop yourself from smiling too wide.
  Multiple times you had to scold yourself in Alchemy, for not focusing on your work. Your mind was running wild and you reached a conclusion. There was no going back, the dice have been rolled, alea iacta est.
It would be foolish of you to dive straight in, you thought. But since the two of you had already been so close, now you somehow felt this way, could George be interested in you romantically too? You decided to test the waters a bit for some time, see how it goes and if he really sees you as only a friend.
George occupied your mind now, you found yourself thinking about him often, your daydreams growing bolder as with time you got more comfortable with the idea that you were completely and utterly attracted to him. Both emotionally and physically. You craved his attention and realised that you always took it for granted. Now you searched for it, constantly wondering about the ways you showed each other affection as friends – wanting to only balance the line now, maybe step a toe outside a little bit, to see how George reacts to it. By the time for lunch, you were properly excited.
Once again, you took a seat next to George, who was busy talking. You sat real close, your sides touching. You resisted the urge to wrap your arm around his and lay your head on his shoulder and settled down.
George looked at you at the sudden contact. He couldn’t see your facial expression. Thinking it was the manifestation of your need for comfort, he wrapped his arm around your shoulder and squeezed your arm gently. “Everything alright..?”
It took a lot of effort for you to not squeal and keep your face casual, pull yourself together.
“Yeah, why?” “Oh, I just… dunno,” he mumbled, dropping his arm. You looked up at him innocently, “I don’t mind that,” you referred to his embrace. “Oh I bet,” he chuckled, pushing into your shoulder and getting back to his food with a smirk. “What’s that supposed to mean?” you mocked offence, hiding just how much your heart rate picked up. “Nothing, just- just joking,” he replied and got back to listening to Fred.
“Do you know if Frazer is back from the hospital wing?” you asked him on your way to Transfiguration, talking about your regular desk mate. You moved closer subtly, brushing your shoulder against his arm.
Frazer used to be one of the reserve players for the Gryffindor team, so George kept in touch with them. “I don’t think so, didn’t Angelina say anything to you?”
You knew they would still be absent, but that was not the point.
“Last time the seat next to me was empty it didn’t go well, is all.” “See, I’d sit next to you but then you’re just gonna complain how I keep distracting you,” he scoffed jokingly and put his hands in his pockets.
You took this opportunity to link your arm through his and waited patiently.
“’kay, I’ll sit with you,” he rolled his eyes dramatically. “But I will be distracting you.”
And he did. But this time you happily let him. You put up enough of a façade so that McGonagall thought you were somewhat participating in class, while in reality, you had zero focus on the topic.
It started with him just nudging with his pinkie the hand you were holding down your notebook with, during the lecture. Then he took his quill and started a game of tic-tac-toe in his notebook and slid it towards you.
After you made your first move, you didn’t slide the notebook back, making George move his chair closer, so that you were both hovering over the paper together. You played a few games, each ending in a tie. Last round, as George was close to winning and you were about to make a move, he placed his hand on your quill hand, botching your move, then made his final one.
George sucked air in through his teeth, “would you look at that,” he mocked, earning a glare from you.
He then withstood two minutes of boredom, doodling in your notebook occasionally, before he started writing on the margin of your notes. This started a dumb joke contest between the two of you which lasted until the end of McGonagall’s lecture. She ordered you to practice, giving you a chance to talk.
“You’re awfully nice today,” George quipped, raising an eyebrow. “Am I?” “Yeah. No ‘George, stop it’, no ‘George, I wanna focus on the lesson’, no glares...”
What was supposed to be just a joke to tease you, got you thinking. Were you behaving too much unlike usually? You didn’t think you were being that nice, so could it mean-
“Am I that mean usually?” you asked casually, resting your chin on your palm. “Yeah, just aw-“ he started, sarcastically. Then he took notice of your expression, which wasn’t necessarily serious but he still worried, “-wait are you serious? I was just joking-“ “I know, I know…”
“You’re both idiots, you are aware of it..?” Fred butted in, leaning over his desk behind you.
George shot him a look and grabbed your hand, then still holding it, flipped Fred off.
  The same week, Hogwarts was graced with the first snow of the season. It had started snowing around noon. By the end of your afternoon classes, there was a layer of snow on the ground already while the snowfall continued. That, paired off with your all-around angelic mood these last few days, made you excited like a child.
You pretty much ran out of the classroom, skipping through the corridors to the common room. Noticing George’s back by Fred and Lee, you practically threw yourself at him.
“It’s snowing!!” you shouted and they laughed at your giddiness. “Yes, we know, Y/N, there are windows in here,” George told you, settling you down.
You looked up at him with puppy eyes, pouting. You weren’t quite ready for Fred and Lee’s teasing yet, so you’d rather not have to say ‘George, go outside with me, but just the two of us, please’ out loud.
“Are you going out?” George asked with an adoring smile and you nodded enthusiastically. He looked at his mates who were already busy with something else. “Alright, get changed and I’ll meet you here.”
As soon as you stepped outside you marvelled at the sound of snow under your boots. You ran ahead a bit, looking around yourself at the snowflakes falling everywhere. George chuckled at you, but you didn’t mind, the sound of his chuckle only made you happier.
“I don’t think I’ve ever seen you this happy about the snow.”
But it wasn’t just the snow.
You turned to face him and shrugged. “I’m in a good mood,” you said, reaching your hand out for him to take. George took a second trying to read you, looking into your eyes, making you dizzy again. “Let’s go to the lake,” you proposed. “Okay,” he replied simply and finally took your hand.
It felt different from all the other times you held hands. While it was different in all the best ways, it made you extremely self-conscious – from the distance between the two of you (you ended up close enough to brush your arms together as you walked) to how tight your grip was (about medium). That’s how you walked in silence until you reached the lake.
“It’s beautiful,” you noted, truthfully. “Too bad there’s not enough to make a snowman, huh?” you said, kicking a bit of snow under your foot. “Give it a bit of time and we’ll make a troll out of snow.”
You looked around the beautiful landscape, mountains and trees covered in white layer of snow, the black lake beginning to freeze on the edges and the delicate snowflakes disappearing after meeting its smooth surface.
You glanced at your scarf, jacket and gloves. You brought George’s hand up, his black hand gloves providing better contrast, allowing you to better admire individual snowflakes. “Look,” you told him, completely enamoured with all the tiny shapes.
And he would have, had you not looked so adorable.
“I think about it every winter and it still baffles me, how each of them is different. And they’re all so beautiful. Each one is special…”
“Yeah… yeah, they are.”
  You took a warming shower and put on some comfy clothes, then walked downstairs into the common room. It was full, non an extraordinary sight on a Saturday night, but the worst of it – George was sitting with a group of others and you couldn’t just outright ask him to ditch them to spend time alone. You walked over to the couch with your regular smile, hoping they wouldn’t stick around for too long.
You took a small spot on the sofa between Fred and George, who was spread wide in the corner, his arm on the backrest. You brought your legs up end settled close to him. To your appreciation, his arm didn’t move from its spot, behind your shoulders now. It didn’t take you long to rest your head on it, his body warmth drawing you in.
The afternoon in the snow took its toll on your friends, their conversation was slow, their tiredness visible. One by one they started getting up, stretching and heading up to their dorms, Fred and Lee amongst them.
“You going up?” George asked you through a yawn, noticing you didn’t show any desire of getting up from your spot. “I wanna stay here a bit longer,” you mumbled, looking at him a bit expectantly.
He hummed in agreement and shifted to sit a bit straighter up, allowing you to snuggle into his side without having to lay on top of him.
You put your head on his shoulder and wrapped your arms around him like many times before, hoping he wouldn’t feel your thumping heart this time. George placed one of his arms around your shoulder, the other loosely over your arm on his middle and sighed contently, letting his head fall back and resting his eyes.
You breathed in his scent and let it consume you. Being this close felt electrifying, exhilarating yet comforting at the same time, it felt simply as if his arms were made to hold you.
“Been a while,” he said quietly. You felt the vibration of his voice and it sent shivers down your spine. You’ve always loved George’s voice but now it had a special effect on you. “Hm?” “Since we’ve… spent time like this,” he explained. Spent time like this, huh? “Hmm… has it..?” you mumbled.
“Are you drifting away already?” he chuckled and you followed, sleepily. “That comfy, huh?” “Actually, yeah… and I love this jumper, it’s so soft,” you blurted out, running your fingers over the fabric of his jumper. He didn’t say anything to that and you cringed a bit, scared you may have made things awkward.
“How are you?” George asked after a bit of silence. He noticed the question was vague, considering he saw you every day, so he quickly added, “after last week.”
You thought for a bit. “Alright, I think.” He hummed. “Had other things on my mind this week, distracting me,” you said truthfully. “Other… what things?” he asked, suspiciously. “See, that’s for me to know and for you to find out… maybe.” “Playing with moss again, are you?” he quipped, making you laugh. “You are in a good mood all the time lately,” he noted, his tone suggesting there was something else behind his words.
The two of you talked some more of day-to-day things until it got hard to keep your eyes open. Eventually, you both decided it was time to head up, not wanting to fall asleep on the old, worn-out sofa. You reluctantly left his embrace and got up, feeling the cold of missing his body right away. You stretched and yawned, stalling your parting ways.
George looked at you, putting his hands in his pockets briefly. He then took off his jumper. The t-shirt he had underneath had ridden up slightly, revealing a bit of his abdomen, but you looked away before he could catch you staring.
“Night, love,” he said, handing you the piece of clothing, not quite looking you in the eye. You hesitated at first, then took it from him, brushing your fingers against his.
“Sweet dreams, Georgie,” you replied and turned to walk away, swallowing hard as soon as he couldn’t see your face, feeling your cheeks burn up.
You took a long shower that night, one loud enough to mask just how much George occupied your mind.
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sdvharveybby · 7 months ago
so i fell fast and hard for harvey, you know, as you do. i was wondering if i could request harvey and the farmer going to an aerobics class together? this man was so shy about it and it absolutely melts my heart 🥺🥺 thank you so much!!
OH bby anon do I understand! When I first watched that event I was like, “Oh you sweet man. So so precious!!” This ask is such a cute idea, thank you so much for sending it in! I never thought about this, personally, so I’m glad you sent it! 
I really enjoyed writing this, as well, but I’ll be honest... I’m not 100% confident about it? I certainly loved writing it, but if this isn’t up to your liking- I’m totally down with re-writing it. I don’t want anyone to feel major dissatisfaction with my work, you know? Let me know! I, originally, intended to do some headcannons (because thems are easy mode), but honestly- it fit a fic type better. Also, Zumba is crazy crazy fun- I did it in high school, and I had a blast! I felt like it fit the story and his event!
Regardless, inspiration with this was actually memories! I recently quit my martial arts class (due to health reasons), but the mood in this story is exactly how it was in my dojo! One time I was doing a Naeryeo-Chagi (also known as “axe kick”, but you bring your leg up as high as you can and with a flat foot you snap your leg down), I can kick pretty high, so when I kicked as high as I could I felt my other foot leave the ground and I fell FLAT on my butt. I was so stunned!! Eyes wide, all I could do was just laugh. Everyone thought it was funny and so did I! That stuff just happens- it’s hilarious!! I have so many wonderful memories in that class...
ANYWAYS- HOPE YOU ENJOYED THIS BBY. THANK YOU SO MUCH AGAIN. I feel your love with Harvey (the boy deserves all the love in the world!!) 
Word Count: 1572
An eventful day of hard work for the farmer, but luckily, they finished their chores early- hopefully to spend some time with Harvey. He always seemed to disappear on Tuesdays closer to noon and he never told the farmer why. It was perplexing, but he always carried a duffle bag with him and a look that bashfully avoided eye contact.
There he was, carrying his duffle bag as he made his way to town. Approaching him, the farmer stopped him in his tracks, “You like to disappear around this time,” they teased as Harvey looked away. “Y-Yeah well, you know… Heh, doctor… duties?” Harvey’s words didn’t sound convincing whatsoever, especially since he came home from work early because his patient rescheduled their check-up. “With a duffle bag?” The farmer further challenged, now crossing their arms and putting their weight on one leg. They gave him a cocky smile as he began to blush, “Okay, okay-“ He submitted as he held up a hand, “You caught me! I’m taking cooking classes with Gus!” Harvey tried looking into the farmers eyes as he said this, but it wasn’t for long. “Harvey, you’re already a great cook. Now, what are you really doing? I won’t make fun of you!” They assured him as they walked and pulled Harvey into a big hug. He gave a heavy sigh and scuffed the dirt with his shoe. “Heh, well… Uhm… I’m still taking those aerobics classes. It’s a bit embarrassing, but you know- you saw it before. Just trying to work on myself!” Harvey was bashful and quiet as he said this, but he reciprocated the hug. Once they pulled away the farmer bounced back with a smile that made his heart stop. “Great! Let’s go then. We don’t want to be late.” They walked away from him making their way to Pierre’s. Harvey stood, stunned at the farmers response but bounded after them yelling, “What do you mean ‘we’?!” “I’m coming with you, and you can’t stop me.” The farmer smiled to Harvey and he blushed once again, “You don’t have too. You must be tired after work and all- I can’t ask you too-“ The farmer stopped and faced him, they gave a jokingly annoyed look, “We can do this together, Harvey. It’ll be fun and maybe it’ll be less embarrassing for you. My cardio is bad,” They laughed, and Harvey gave them a soft and affectionate look, “Okay, but don’t get worried about me. Even if I say I can’t breathe- I can,” He laughed back, and they made there way to Pierre’s together deciding to hold hands as they did so.
Harvey was nervous about the farmer joining him- he wasn’t sure how they’d react. Towards himself or the class! He didn’t want the farmer to feel embarrassed or witness him messing up. Most of all- it was hard for Harvey to be social with the ladies in class and he didn’t want them to see him as stiff compared to everyone else.
Walking inside they saw Marnie, Robin and Emily already there. They all gave Harvey and the farmer warm smiles, “What do we have here?” Robin began as they put an arm around the farmer, “I decided that I’m joining today! My cardio sucks,” Robin laughed and whispered into their ear, “Don’t worry, mind does too.” Emily jumped up and clapped her hands together, “This is awesome! We have the cute duo joining us!” They all gave them an endearing welcome that made Harvey and the farmer blush, and after roughly 20min of chatting they all decided to get to work. The farmer looked around and watched everyone begin to pick their spots. “Today is actually Zumba class led by Caroline. You’ll love it- it’s really fun. She’ll teach you the dance moves to the song she chooses, and we just copy her,” Harvey remarked leaning towards the farmer. Now, this was all new territory for the farmer, but they were determined to have fun and get some exercise in. Harvey seemed confident so why couldn’t they?
The session lasted about an hour long, and it wasn’t until the farmer had sweat droplets running down their face that they realized how intensive these classes get. These women have to be power houses to get through this and still smile like it was nothing, the farmer thought as they hunched over breathing heavily. “You… You look tired,” a voice heaved behind them and as they looked, Harvey didn’t look any better. He had his hands on his knees and he closed his eyes trying to get his breath back. Sweat dripped off him as he brought up a hand towel and began wiping his face. “Please,” the farmer choked out as they smiled, “You look worse than I do,” they managed to finish as they laid down to relax a bit. “I blame the fact that I already did my farm work before this,” Harvey laughed as they said this and sat beside them holding a water bottle. “You did great! Isn’t it fun?” The farmer sat up and took his water bottle, they downed about half of it before responding, “I can’t believe how fun this is! Once you get the moves down it just flows. I felt so… powerful,” they laughed and gave Harvey a big smile. “Thanks for coming,” he admitted, “You being here, with me, actually helped a lot. I was pretty embarrassed being in a class full of women who have been doing this longer than I. They’re so strong and they can get through the whole class like it’s nothing- I felt so out of place.” The farmer gave him a friendly punch to his arm, “I’m coming back- this feels great! But wow, it also hurts.”
The walk home was slow, but it was filled with excitement from both the farmer and Harvey. “Honestly, it’s pretty admirable for you to go those classes,” They began as Harvey walked beside them- he kept his sweatband on and occasionally drank from his water bottle. “You think so?” He questioned wiping the excess water from his mouth. “Oh, yeah! You see Marnie? She can move, I was in awe. She knew everything and was so confident- it was kind of intimidating! I know what you mean about feeling out of place.” The farmer admitted and cracked their knuckles, “I’ll show her up next time though! Then she’ll be in awe!” Harvey laughed at that and watched them with admiration. The determination the farmer had to want to keep coming to the class eased his nerves and made him quite happy. It was something they could do together, something new to experience, and having a partner who was almost as out of shape as he was, was comforting. “Thanks for coming. Like I said, it helped out my confidence having you with me.” He didn’t look at them as he said, he looked forward as he walked, and he wore a small smile. “Oh, Harvey- you knew the moves too! You were so cool to watch, I mean, I didn’t know you could even move like that,” The farmer teased nudging him. He chuckled at that and offered the farmer the rest of his water through the walk home.
It had been a few months since they went to there first class together, and they had a blast! They both felt like they were getting stronger and with the farmer at his side Harvey worked like he never had before. He had someone he wanted to impress, and it gave him the motivation to keep working on himself and his health. Whenever they’d go to class together, they wore ear-to-ear smiles and it was filled with plenty of laughable moments, like the farmer using the jump rope. They weren’t bad at it, but the one time the rope wrapped around their ankle, tripping them, and they hit the ground face first. Harvey was of course worried but was relieved when the farmer rolled over roaring with laughter. He then, of course, joined the laughter while he helped them stand. Or the time that Harvey was lifting his weights- he pulled one up with enough force that he accidentally let go and it flew! When it hit the ground (making a loud BANG) he blushed madly as Pierre bolted in the room and began lecturing everyone in the class. Nobody could hide their smiles and giggles when Pierre grew red with anger, “You better not break anything! This isn’t some stomping ground!!” Course Robin was the first to break as she fell out in laughter, keeling over as soon as Pierre left the room. Harvey no longer felt out of place in the aerobics class, and he constantly thanked the farmer for that. He realized that he was more embarrassed about possibly messing up than just accepting that moments like that just happen and he began to laugh whenever something silly happened to him. Whenever someone tripped or dropped something he learned to laugh (when they did) and not immediately assume something was wrong. He learned that the most from how many times the farmer tripped, fell, scrapped something, dropped something and instead of feeling embarrassed or nervous, they just laughed. Everyone else did too!
Looking back, Harvey was extremely grateful for having the farmer at his side. He never expected this to happen, but he was happy that it did!
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whiskey-cokenfanfic · a year ago
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Chris Evans x OFC (Annalise Crawley)
Summary: Annalise finally has time to catch up with her best friend after nearly a month working as Chris’s assistant, but her job is far from glamorous. However, her day ends with a pleasant surprise.
A/N: Part two y’all. Hope you enjoy. feed back is always welcome.
Part One | Part Three | Part Four | Part Five
Part Two: Catching Up
The bell on the door let out a small tinkle as Annalise stepped into the cozy little cafe. She had agreed to meet Michelle when she had a day off. Unfortunately, it had taken nearly a month before she could. And really she only had two hours to spare…. Well, actually only an hour, because she had a few errands to run for Mr. Evans first before she could meet her friend.
She looked around before she spotted Michelle at their favorite table by the window. They always sat there to talk and people-watch. She made her way over, winding through the tables, minding that she stepped over cords for laptops and bags.
“Hey, girl,” Michelle chirped once Annalise made it to the table. “I got your usual.” 
“Hey,” Annalise replied in a flat tone, before plopping down in her chair and taking the large cup her friend handed her.
“Uh-oh,” Michelle said. “I know that voice. What’s up?”
“This job.”
“Is it that bad?”
Annalise nodded while adding sugar to her coffee. “I’m this close to committing a homicide.”
“Huh, who’d have thought Chris Evans was such a jerk.”
“‘Jerk’ doesn’t even begin to cover it,” Annalise shook her head and took a sip of her coffee. “He is the biggest asshole on the planet. And that’s still being nice.”
“Wow, I mean, I know you’ve told me bits and pieces, but what’s he really like?”
“Okay, so, I told you about my first day right? How he had me cleaning his place?”
Michelle nodded.
“Well let me tell you about the following week…”
If Annalise’s first day was bad, her first full week was downright awful. She was still trying to get a hold of the crazy schedule Chris kept and he was not making it easy for her. Not only was she meant to be available during her working hours, which on a good day were from anywhere around seven in the morning to about ten at night, but she was required to be on call whenever he felt he needed her, meaning two in the morning after she settled in bed or five in the morning on a Saturday. She was beginning to forget what a proper night’s sleep meant.
The job itself wasn’t half bad, with any other boss, it might have even been decent. But Chris wasn’t any boss. She was beginning to suspect he was punishing her for her insubordination that first day in his kitchen. 
She wasn’t just answering emails and setting up appointments, she was running his little errands: fetching coffee, which had to be from a specific place and made a certain way or he wouldn’t drink it; she had to pick up dry cleaning or anything else he needed. He’d call at all hours to get her to set up an appointment or get something he’d forgotten to tell her earlier that day, even though she constantly asked him if he needed her to do anything before she left. She was starting to suspect he took some sick pleasure in her being frustrated.
 She had made friends with the people who worked in the offices, coffee shops, and cleaners she had to go to. As soon as they knew who she was working for, they all took pity on her and tried to be kind, making sure that his orders were ready once they saw Annalise coming. The baristas at the coffee shop she had to go to even gave her their number so she could call ahead and let them know she was on the way... 
“So he’s clearly notorious around here,” Michelle said.
“Yep,” Annalise answered with a sigh. “But that’s not all....”
The Tuesday of her first week, he had an interview with some magazine and she was there to make sure he didn’t need anything. That’s when she witnessed the Chris Evans that the public knew, that she thought she knew. He was kind, funny, and warm. He was even nice to her. Annalise was completely floored at the 180 he did. It was like seeing a different man. She found herself looking at him in awe. This was the Chris so many people fell in love with. Here was the genuine guy that you felt you could sit and have a beer and a chat with.
“So, who is this lovely lady here with you?” the reporter asked, looking for a hot scoop. “Girlfriend?”
Chris let out a laugh that would have melted the coldest heart. “Unfortunately, no,” he said shaking his head, still chuckling. “That’s my assistant Annalise.”
Well, at least he got my name right, Annalise thought to herself. 
“But, yes, she is lovely,” Chris turned to her and gave her a twinkling smile that didn’t seem to reach his eyes, as if he was daring her to say anything wrong. 
That caught her off guard, but she quickly recovered and smiled back at him and the reporter. The reporter didn’t notice her hesitation, however. Once Chris had said she wasn’t his girlfriend, she lost all interest in Annalise.
“So Chris, tell us about this new project…” And the interview went on…
“Wait, wait a minute,” Michelle interrupted her friend. “He called you lovely?”
“Yeah,” Annalise said, but then quickly added, “But he didn’t mean it. He was just playing it up for the interviewer.”
“Ah, okay, well that’s too bad.”
“Nah not really, I don’t want a jerk like that thinking I’m lovely.” Annalise smiled ruefully. “If I did, I’d call one of my exes.
Michelle chuckled. 
“Anyways, here’s the big thing,” Analise continued....
Chris partied, a LOT. And they weren’t the little quiet, laid back, get-togethers she and her friends would have. No, there were always at least a hundred people there. She felt for the cleaning crew because these people just acted as if any surface of his place or wherever were just giant trash cans. Tossing whatever to the ground or on the sofa or the counter. She spent most of her time following behind them trying to pick up stuff so it wouldn’t spill and mess up the furniture or carpets...
“So, you just clean instead of work?” Michelle asked.
“Yeah, well, I can’t get any work done with all the noise going on.”
“Where do you work at anyway?”
“Well he converted one of his rooms into an office, so I usually work in there, but when a party is going on, there’s really no point. Especially when you have half-drunk people stumbling in every five minutes thinking it’s a bathroom or a bedroom.” Annalise shook her head and took another sip of her coffee. “Speaking of which…”
The amount of women that would be at these parties was insane even to her. Instagram models and actresses, both major and minor, and even just some random women who were just there to get close to Chris or one of his friends. It was ridiculous to her, because it just seemed like Chris and his friends were out for a good time and these women had no idea. She found herself feeling sorry for them, for half a minute, then they’d go and do something like talking down to her and she’d have to set them straight...
“This one chick, came into my office and told me to go make her a drink like I’m a fucking servant. I told her this wasn’t Downton Abbey and if she wanted a drink she could go get one herself. Just because I’m his assistant doesn’t mean I’m his fucking maid,” Annalise ranted.
Michelle nodded sympathetically…
But the worst part was the fact that almost every morning after one of these parties, Annalise had to usher some woman out of the house. And it was always someone different. Chris would get up and go for a run or go get breakfast while the woman was still asleep in his bed. Annalise had the dirty task of collecting her clothes, waking her up, and sending her on her way. At first she felt bad, offering the woman a coffee or something to eat or at least a shower before she had to kick her out. But one morning, Chris had come back to Annalise and some brunette girl chatting to each other over coffee and he had dismissed the woman as if she was nothing then berated Annalise for it.
“You’re not supposed to make friends with them. I want them gone before I get back,” he had told her. “These women don’t want anything but to be attached to me and sucker off of me. I’m not having that. So, from now on, anyone here after a party is to be gone before I get back. Do I make myself clear?”
“Yeah, whatever,” she mumbled.
“What was that?”
“I said, ‘yes, sir, whatever you want,’” she said sarcastically, then downed her coffee and stormed past him and into the office, closing the door rather hard behind her....
“Jerk,” Michelle said.
“Jackass,” Annalise concurred. “But you should see him during these parties. He’s all smiles and laughs and being nice with his friends and then the morning comes and he changes back to being the asshole he is. I can’t stand it. Two-faced creep.”
Michelle was quiet for a second watching her friend. She had no idea that when she suggested this job to her that it would be this bad. Annalise was a sister to her and she just wanted her to succeed.
“Anna,” Michelle said softly. “I feel like I know the answer to this, but have you made any progress on the book?”
Annalise shook her head and got a sad look in her eyes.
“I’m so sorry, this is my fault. I shouldn’t have suggested this to you. If I had known…”
Annalise cut her friend off. “No, no. This is not your fault. Don’t even think that. Honestly, I’m getting paid better than I have ever before. It’s just another obstacle. ‘Chelle, don’t worry. I can do this.” She chuckled softly. “Besides, think how good this will be when I write my memoirs.”
“Are you sure you’ll be okay?”
Annalise nodded. “I will. But if you hear something on the news about a homicide, it might be me. You got my bail money right?”
Michelle laughed. “I got you. Don’t even worry.”
Just then Annalise’s phone lit up. She looked at the name that popped up on her phone and let out a frustrated groan. Michelle looked at it and saw a picture of Chris, but with devil horns drawn on and the name changed to “Asshole,” before Annalise answered.
“I need you to get back here now. We have to go tomorrow and I need bags packed.”
“Right, I’m on my way now.”
“You have five minutes,” he said before hanging up.
Annalise frowned. “I gotta go. Apparently he can’t even pack his own bags.”
“Where’s he going?”
“No idea,” she said standing. “But maybe I’ll get a break.”
She went around the table and hugged her friend tight. “I’ll talk to you soon, okay? Love you.”
“Love you too.”
Annalise rushed out of the door, her half drunk coffee in her hand. As she made her way quickly down the sidewalk, her phone chimed again. It was a message from Chris telling her that she needed to pick up another coffee for him. She stopped abruptly and turned, still looking at her phone and not seeing the man that was behind her, causing her to crash into him. Her phone fell to the ground and her coffee spilled over her and the man.
“Shit!” she said. “Sir, I am so sorry about that.” 
She scrambled to pick up her phone and empty cup, but before she could reach the cup, his hand closed over it and picked it up. They both straightened at the same time.
“Are you okay?” he asked in a deep voice.
“Yeah, yeah, I’m fine. Are you?” she asked looking at him. “Oh, no, no, I spilled coffee on you!”
He laughed and wiped the drops off of the front of his shirt and tie. “It’s fine. Lucky it wasn’t hot.”
“I’m so sorry,” Annalise said. “My boss texted me and I just got upset.”
The man laughed again. “Jesus, what could he have texted you to make you upset enough to dump coffee on me? Oh, god, it wasn’t a dick pic was it?”
Annalise laughed. “God no, you would have seen me throw my phone and run screaming if that happened.”
“Well, I’m glad that didn’t happen,” he said smiling at her.
“Why’s that?”
“Well, it’s not every day a beautiful woman runs into you. Had he sent you that, I might not have ran into you.”
Annalise smiled back at him and took him in fully. He wasn’t bad looking. Tall, nice smile, dark hair, gorgeous eyes, and that voice that sent a tingle down her spine. Well, I could have ran into someone worse, she thought to herself. 
“Yeah that’s true,” she agreed. “But look, I gotta go, I’m gonna be late. But look at least let me pay for the dry cleaning or something?”
“How about I buy you another coffee?” He countered.
“Uh, yeah, yeah that’s good.”
“So when are you free?”
Annalise thought. “I actually have no idea. That’s… that’s not me trying to avoid you or anything, I’m just so busy with this job.”
“It’s okay,” he said calmly. “Here, why don’t I give you my number and you can call me, and we’ll set a date?”
“Uh yeah sure,” she said, typing in his number as he gave it to her. 
“My name’s Cole. Cole Clarke, Jr. People just call me CJ.” 
He stuck out his hand and she took it, shaking it, feeling something electric go through her.
“Annalise Crawley.”
“Nice to meet you, Annalise,” he said as he started to walk off. “Remember, coffee, date, text me.”
“Yeah, definitely,” she said. 
After standing there for a second, reveling in the feeling she had possibly met someone special, she shook herself mentally and ran in the direction of the coffee place to pick up Chris’s order. She called them to let her know that she was on the way. She knew she was gonna be late and Chris would of course be upset, but at that moment, she couldn’t bring herself to care. She was happy. One little encounter had made her happier than she had been in months.
She rushed into the shop, picked up his coffee, and rushed back to Chris’s house. She knew she was well past the five minute deadline he had given her. And she could tell he wasn’t happy by the look on his face when she came into the kitchen.
“I thought I said five minutes,” he said.
“Sorry, sir, I had an accident.”
“You look fine to me.” He looked her up and down, eyeing the coffee stain on her top. “I hope that’s not my coffee on your shirt.”
She rolled her eyes. “No, sir, here’s your coffee.” She sat it down in front of him.
“Good. Now about the trip. When we get to California, you need to make sure that the dates for the interviews and press junkets are all set up. Make sure my hotel room is ready, I hate waiting for them to clean everything. Make sure you pack enough for the weather, it’s tricky. It’ll be hot then cool, and I don’t have time for you to go shopping for anything.”
Annalise was shocked. “I’m… I’m going with you?”
Now it was Chris’s turn to roll his eyes. “Of course you are. What? You think I can handle all that shit myself? You’re my assistant for a reason.”
“Now for my clothes, make sure you pack…”
She stopped listening as her heart sank. So much for the coffee date she had with Cole. 
“Got it?”
“Yeah, I got it.”
“Well, go get packing. We need to be at the airport at eight in the morning.” He headed out to the patio with his coffee, without even a thank you. “Oh, and make sure you print out the boarding passes and all that.”
“Of course, sir,” she said sadly.
She headed back into his room to pull out his suitcases to begin to pack. She called Michelle while she was busy and told her in hurried and rushed tones what happened after she left. Michelle offered to go to her place and pack for her, so she wouldn’t be rushed, and offered her friend some advice.
“Tell CJ what’s going on. If he understands, great. If not, you can do better. Okay?”
“Yeah, you’re right.”
“Annalise!” Chris yelled for her. 
“I gotta go, girl. And thanks so much. Love you.”
Before she went to see what he wanted she typed out a quick text to CJ, telling him she had to go on a trip to California, but as soon as she got back, they’d definitely meet up.
“ANNALISE!!” Chris yelled louder, walking down the hall to his room, where she hurried out and ran into him. 
Twice in one day, she thought. “Yes, sir, I was coming.”
“Watch where you’re going,” he said. 
“Sorry,” she said, gritting her teeth. “What did you need?”
“Make sure you pack that suit I had dry cleaned for the gala Friday night.”
“Got it.”
Her phone chimed in her hand with a text. 
Chris looked down at it. “No wonder you couldn't hear me. Too busy talking on the phone. Anyway, make sure you have something acceptable for the gala too.”
Annalise nodded. 
When he walked off she checked her messages. CJ had texted her back saying that he would be waiting on her to come back. She smiled at that and went back in the room to finish packing, her heart a little lighter.
Tag List:  @patzammit @mrs-captain-evans​ @southerngracela​ @mom-nicole​ @denisemarieangelina​ @cap-just-said-language​ @cevansgirl​ @raveviolet​ @artisticrogers1972​  @coffeebooksandfandom​ @missnighttigress​ @tomhardy41​ @thinkxlovexloud​ @thegetawaywriter​ @princess-evans-addict​  @twittytelly​ @chrisevansfanfic​ @joannaliceevans-fanficblog​ @imanuglywombat​ @sullyosully​ @thejemersoninferno​ @captain-kelli​  @nerdy-bookworm-1998​ @opalsandlacemain​ @keepyourdreamsalive​ @whereeverythingisbetter​ @iamtheembodimentofhate​ @yesfanficsaremylife​ @jd-now-jq​ @jennmurawski13​ @i-lie-here-charmed @icanfeelastormbrewing​ @emilykjh​ @a17ofjuly​ @syms-things-5​ @chezdricks​
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reneesi · a year ago
i never would have thought // CH.10
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CH.10 II the walk home
A/N: GUESS WHOS BACK?? I lived hoes 😎😎. So I've been feeling a lot better and I finally got enough sleep to remember how to write and I also got an editor!! so yay! Hopefully the quality will be a little bit better writing wise :)! We will be returning to semi-scheduled programing but for my sake I'm gonna change the updates to twice a week since three time was clearly too much for me to keep up with. Tuesdays and Fridays will be the new upload days! Anyways, enjoy the rest of the chapter~
“I knew you’d make it!” Tanka roared, slapping Tsukishima’s back a little too hard as the blonde took a seat beside him. Tsukishima flinched ever so slightly, and grit his teeth as he reached up to rub his shoulder.
“I only came because this is a team event.” Tsukishima mumbled, rolling his eyes as more teammates piped in with hellos and comments of joking passive aggressiveness.
When Tsukishima had initially texted the group chat that he would be skipping that night's festivities the team had erupted into light disapproval and jokes of annoyance. Although (Y/n) knew she should have been angry, the feeling that overwhelmed her senses was much closer to disappointment. She’d tried her best to hide the way her stomach had sunk deep into itself by keeping her eyes low, but her slightly hunched posture had been a dead give away. Sugawara, ever so intuitive, had taken notice.
So while the rest of the team broke out into laughter and hypothetical plans to drag Tsukishima along, Suga had wrapped an arm around (Y/n)’s shoulder and offered a sympathetic smile. (Y/n) had smiled back of course, as convincing as she could muster, but had mostly kept her head down for the rest of the walk.
And while the team was slightly annoyed with Tsukishima’s lack of presence, they weren’t the least bit surprised since it wasn’t the first time he had bailed on them. Yamaguchi, especially, had tried his best to defend Tsukishima at first. That is until he’d caught a glimpse of (Y/n)’s face. One look at her frown immediately made him go silent.  A few minutes later he had broken away from the group, typing away furiously at his screen.
Now that Tsukishima was sitting right across from her, (Y/n) couldn’t bring herself to erase the stress that was crushing her chest. She looked down at her food in confusion, he was here.. so why did she still feel awful?
“You didn’t have to come, you know?” (Y/n) finally burst out, looking up just in time to see Tsukishima’s eyes widen ever so slightly. In the dim yellow-ish light his blush was easy to miss. Tsukishima reached up to adjust his glasses and let out a signature tch.
“Of course I didn’t have to come, stupid,” He replied in irritation, looking away to avoid (Y/n)’s heavy stare. When she didn’t look away, he added “I came because I wanted to.”
“That’s convenient.” Yamaguchi cut in, unusual smirk tugging at his usual innocent face.
“Just gonna casually leave the part out where I had to basically force you to come?” Yamaguchi teased, reaching over to poke at Tsukishima’s increasingly red face. The blonde quickly swatted his best friend’s fingers away.
“You didn’t force me,” He scowled, sending Yamaguchi a glare “I just reconsidered is all.”
The latter of his words were much quieter, so much so that for a moment (Y/n) considered they may have been just for her.  A secret message of reassurance that he didn’t in fact hate her, but rather had really just been feeling lazy. She turned those five words over in her head at least seven times, staring at him intently, before receiving another glare. She came to the conclusion that it was much more likely that he hadn’t meant for anyone to hear. (Y/n) thought about what it could have meant, narrowing her eyes as her vision lulled.
“Stop staring, it’s rude.” Tsukishima said flatly, reaching across the table to flick (Y/n)’s forehead abruptly. (Y/n) shook her head in surprise and finally noticed she’d completely zoned out straight ahead. Her eyes widened as a red tint flushed across her cheeks.
“S-sorry!” She squeaked out, looking away immediately.
If it wasn’t for Tsukishima’s light chuckle drawing her eyes back just seconds later, (Y/n) would have missed what must have been the first time she’d seen Tsukishima smile in what felt like forever. He rolled his eyes before turning to ask Tanaka a question, and being pulled into a long conversation about volleyball.
Following this example, (Y/n) turned to her upperclassmen and joined their conversation, but unlike Tsukishima, she was unable to focus. And although her eyes rarely made their way back to him for the remainder of dinner, (Y/n) couldn’t get her mind to do the same.
At around 9 PM, Hinata and Kageyama announced that they would be departing early, excusing themselves with a simple mention of early training. As he hugged her goodbye, (Y/n) could have sworn she saw a blush creeping its way across her cousin's cheeks, but when she tried to ask he’d practically jumped out of his skin and laughed a little too loud.
“I’m probably just sleepy!” Shoyo had chuckled, slapping (Y/n)’s arm with more force than necessary.
(Y/n) had squinted at the pair, watching as they made their exit, wincing as she rubbed her arm thoughtfully. She would definitely have to bring this up with Shoyo later.
As for the rest of the team, most of them had stayed until at least 10 PM. After that it grew even later and people began to bid their goodbyes until only Daichi, Sugawara, (Y/n), Yamaguchi, and Tsukishima remained standing outside of the restaurant.
“I never realized how late it had gotten!” Sugawara yawned, peering at his watch. Daichi took Suga’s school bag and draped it over his own shoulder, wrapping his free arm around his boyfriend’s waist. Suga rubbed at his eyes sleepily.
“Hinata-chan, will you be okay walking home so far this late at night?” Daichi asked, turning to face the first years.
“I think I’ll be okay… I’d usually just walk with Shoyo but he left early.” (Y/n) giggled awkwardly, rubbing at the back of her neck with her palm. Daichi’s eyes suddenly widened as he looked at something just behind (Y/n). She turned back quizzically only to be met with a sheepish Yamaguchi. (Y/n) narrowed her eyes and raised a brow.
“Yama..?” She asked slowly.
“Yes?” He replied, batting his eyelashes innocently. Tsukishima rolled his eyes and groaned.
“Okay, well i'm going home. Congratulations Hinata, have a good night everyone.” He raised a hand lazily, already turning to leave.
“Would you like me to walk you h-“ Daichi began before Yamaguchi, who had grabbed Tsukishima by the collar of his shirt at some point, cut in.
“Actualllllyyy Tsukishima is gonna walk her home! You guys go home! Don’t worry about it!” Yamaguchi beamed, waving at his upperclassmen in an almost aggressive manner.
“Looks like we’re being shooed away, goodnight everybody.” Sugawara chuckled lightly, following Daichi’s lead as he turned them both around and began to walk, arm still held tight around Suagwara.
“Goodnight everyone.” Daichi called back, footsteps growing distant as a silence fell over the three remaining first years.
“I’m not walking her home.” Tsukishima said, almost on cue, as he wiggled his way free of Yamaguchi’s gasp and began to walk away once more.
“Oh no you don’t.” Yamaguchi snatched him by the strap of his bag this time “You absolutely will be walking (Y/n) home! Last time you didn’t, so you still owe her.”
“H-hey it's ok! I can just walk home alone, I don’t wanna cause any trouble-“ (Y/n) tried, words wavering as her anxiety seeped through.
“Are you kidding? It’s almost midnight! No way you’re walking that entire way alone! What if you get kidnapped? Or worse! Tsukishima are you really gonna let some random killer get a hold of our teams precious third manager because you-”
“Oh shut up.” Tsukishima finally cut in, rolling his eyes in frustration. He glared over at Yamaguchi and ripped his friend’s hand off of the strap of his bag.
“Fine, I’ll walk her home…. But fuck you Yama.” He growled, turning briskly to walk in the direction of the Hinata’s house.
(Y/n) looked over at Yamaguchi in absolute horror, Yamaguchi only offered her a cheeky grin and two thumbs up in response before Tsukishima’s angry voice rose up.
“Come one idiot.”
The first ten minutes of walking were dead silent, with Tsukishima keeping a steady pace two steps ahead and (Y/n) trying her very best not to stare at the back of his head like a total creep.
“Sorry for being late.” Tsukishima eventually grumbled, not bothering to turn back.
(Y/n) was thankful for that, given that her cheeks began to glow pink almost immediately. She blinked at the back of his head for a moment too long before remembering she was supposed to answer.
“I-it’s okay!” She stuttered out, staring up at the sky in avoidance until her face finally cooled. After more silent minutes passed, (Y/n) furrowed her brows thoughtfully and asked,
“Why didn’t.. you wanna come… at first?”
Whatever Tsukishima’s face had done in response to her abrupt question would forever be a mystery, given that from behind he appeared completely unfazed.
“Reasons.” He finally said flatly, head tilting ever so slightly to indicate he was looking up at the sky.
“But I came didn’t I?” Tsukishima added after another long moment of silence.
“Thank you for showing up, even if you were late, it meant a lot.. to me.” (Y/n) replied, voice barely above a whisper.
Tsukishima’s shoulders seemed to tense, but not enough for (Y/n) to be sure. If only they were walking side by side she could gauge his reactions better… she quickened her pace ever so slightly but not enough to close the gap.
“Yeah, congrats on winning.” Tsukishima could have been smiling, it almost sounded like he was, but in all honesty (Y/n) never knew with him.
“You deserved it.” He added after another minute of silence passed.
The walk continued in quietude for a bit as the tension finally eased off of (Y/n)’s shoulders. Even if it was just one simple kind remark, (Y/n) understood Tsukishima well enough by now to know he didn’t go around giving praise to just anyone. His kindness was not to be taken lightly, even if it was barely notable at best. Maybe he had been mad, maybe not, but it had clearly passed given that he wasn’t being mean or ignoring her at the moment. If they were okay, if Tsukishima was tossing her light compliments and walking just a little bit slower until their paces matched up and they were walking side by side, then it didn’t really matter much to (Y/n) what had been going through his head earlier that day. They were clearly still friends, so she could stop walking on so many eggshells.
“You know you never did tell me much about your brother!” (Y/n)'s voice chimed up, bubbly syllables lifting her steps into light skips as she leaned forward and turned her head back to send Tsukishima a cheeky ass grin. He scoffed and reached up to adjust his glasses, breaking eye contact quickly.
“I already told you stuff about me. If anything you should be the one talking, idiot.” Tsukishima groaned, irritated brows crossing across his forehead.
“What do you wanna know?” (Y/n) asked, pestering tone vanished from her voice. Tsukishima only shrugged, eyes held taught to the sky.
“I could tell you about my family?” (Y/n) tried after neither first years said anything for a full five minutes.
“Ok.” Tsukishima said simply, glancing over as (Y/n) held a finger up to her chin thoughtfully.
She tried to ignore the way his eyes made her cheeks burn just a bit and looked up at the stars that had gradually begun to shine brighter and brighter.
“Well my parents are pretty nice people, they just aren’t so great at being parents.” (Y/n) laughed to herself softly, glancing over at Tsukishima’s confused face for only a moment. When he didn’t reply, she continued
“They love me, I know they do. The world back home is just… different. Honestly it's difficult for me to talk about this because I feel like it’s a hard place to explain to an outsider.”
“An outsider..?” Tsukishima narrowed his eyes, not in offense but in curiosity
“My parents are kind of… wealthy. The whole social bubble that comes with that is totally different from here..” (Y/n) explained cautiously, embarrassment seeping through the cracks of her words. Tsukishima’s face relaxed to an unreadable expression.
“Oh.” He mumbled, gaze drifting to the sky in tandem with (Y/n).
“Yeah. It kind of sucks..” She sighed, “And I mean I don’t wanna sound ungrateful or anything because I’m not! It’s just that everything has a price and mine was freedom.. My whole life growing up my parents were always motoring me like some kind of doll. I always had to dress a certain way and act a certain way and hang out with certain people and the more they made me the more I hated it.”
(Y/n) paused, sneaking a glance at Tsukishima, his brows furrowed again, but instead of frustration he seemed like he was deep in thought.
“Once, when I was 11, I remember overhearing them arguing about how I'd never end up happy if I couldn’t learn how to fit in. My dad wanted to send me away to boarding school and my Mom was absolutely opposed, but she agree with him that I needed to.. improve.. or I’d never find the right man and settle down and stuff. I was too young to really understand but it just seemed so unfair. I mean, I hated school. I was always having to hang out with these girls that would spread rumors about me behind my back and the guys were.. mean, and I was just so mad that my parents were blaming me for the way I was reaction to it all that I started pushing back as hard as I possibly could and-“ (Y/n)’s lips came to a halt as realization hit her
“I-I’m sorry I’m totally rambling about stupid stuff that you didn’t even ask abou-“
“Shut up” Tsukishima cut in, “if I didn’t wanna listen I would have just tuned you out.”
“H-hey!” (Y/n) protested, mortified blush still hugging her cheeks.
“I didn’t. So stop talking about pointless stuff and keep going.” Tsukishima scoffed, stretching his arms up to provide support for his head which was tilting back into his palms.
“Okay.” (Y/n) mumbled softly, embarrassment dying down to a subtle shyness.
“W-well, I ended up dying my hair brown two years later. I wanted to because I-I never really liked my hair but I’d be lying if I said I didn’t do it mostly because I wanted to piss my parents off.” (Y/n) giggled out the last bit, tugging at a strand of hair unconsciously.
“It suits you.” Tsukishima said simply.
“Thanks!” (Y/n) lit up, too distracted by the prospect of talking about her hair to notice exactly what Tsukishima had just said.
“I did it by myself and I’ve kept it up all these years because I think it looks a lot better and-“
“Okay, I’m tuning you out.” Tsukishima yawned
“Hey! Don’t be rude!” (Y/n) glared, reaching over to punch his arm lightly. Tsukishima made a face of displeasure but otherwise ignored it.  
“Anyways, AS I WAS SAYING before SOMEONE so RUDELY interrupted me,” (Y/n) began again, clearing her throat before delving into a ten minute rant about why dying her hair was the best decision she’d ever made.
Just as she was finishing up, the Hinata household came into view. The conversation fizzled to an end as Tsukishima walked (Y/n) all the way to the door, staying a good foot behind her. He watched her with the same bored expression as they made their way to the front steps and front yard respectively. (Y/n) paused and turned back to Tsukishima with a breath held tight in her chest, it would be rude to walk inside without even saying goodbye.
“T-thank you, for walking me all the way here.” (Y/n) stuttered, eyes trained on the ground that stretched between.
“Yeah.” Tsukishima shrugged, pausing for a long moment before finally asking “Hinata-chan?”
“Yeah?” Her eyes snapped up to him almost reflexively
“While you’re here, be yourself. It’ll be a waste if you’re not… I know we all want you to feel at home so if your other home is a bad place make this a good one.” Tsukishima’s tone was nearly impossible to pinpoint. It hadn’t been quite soft but his usual cover of aloofness was completely absent, it was the kind of comfort that was candid and honest in a way that Tsukishima rarely ever displayed. (Y/n) stared at him wide eyed, before slowly nodding. He stared back for another long moment, almost as if waiting for a reply before a look of finality overtook his features and he held up a lazy hand.
“Goodbye.” He said monotonously, before turning to leave without another word. His movement snapped (Y/n) out of her shock and she called after him,
“Goodnight, Tsukishima! Thanks again!” She exclaimed, waving a frantic hand even though she knew Tsukishima wouldn’t be turning back to acknowledge it. As she watched him go (Y/n) felt an unstoppable blush stream across her face as his words rang through her head once more. His kindness was so rare, and as a result it always ended up feeling like a special gift. She touched the heated flesh of her cheek with the tips of her fingers, why was she always getting flustered around him?
“Don’t be so loud, my parents are already asleep.” Shoyo hissed from behind her, sticking his head out of the cracked front door.
(Y/n) realized Tsukishima was gone and that she’d been staring stupidly at nothing, she turned around and offered a sheepish smile.
“Sorry.” (Y/n) whispered, making her way inside once Shoyo opened the door fully and stepped aside.
“Why did you stay out so late?” Shoyo asked as (Y/n) leaned over and began taking off her shoes. After a pause she said,
“Tsukishima walks reeeeally slow.” (Y/n) smirked, lying straight through her teeth.
Shoyo’s eyes widened for a moment as he tried to do the calculations in his head, staring at her in utter perplexity. (Y/n) only snickered, slipping into her slippers as she began to walk away. Shoyo brain finally caught up and he burst out after his cousin,
“Wait, what the fuck?!”
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