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#just gotta get through my presentation tomorrow.....then I can relax........
memphisfaith · a month ago
Hearts Of Lust: Ch. 38
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Pairing Kim Namjoon X Reader
Genre: High School!AU, Smut
Word Count: 3.3K
Warning: Cursing, mentions of smut, smut, consumption of alcohol, mentions of violence, violence, crack personality disorders, Chaotic energy.
Summary: High School is any teenager’s prime years, at least that’s what Lee (y/n) and Kim Namjoon thought. The two are infamous for two reasons, by two vary different crowds. Among the teachers they are picture perfect students with perfect scores, attendance, and image. However, among the students they are the vary essence of lust with amazing bodies, sex appeal, and skill. The two, although strikingly similar, butt heads quite a bit with competitions of everything from grades to who can get a person to drop their pants the fastest. With the two of them in their final year of high school and their plans for college already sorted out and paid for they have nothing to worry about…At this point the year is all a matter of Go Big or Go Home.
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Shin got off her shift within the next hour, thankfully. Her manager probably has it out for her now. However I think it’s safe to say we won her competition within our first day, but that doesn’t stop us from continuing our shopping spree into day two.
Today I’m more prepared, this time around I dressed comfortably and made a list the night before of items I could easily grab. Efficiency is key if I plan to beat Namjoon. So far I’ve been to Shin twice and it's just before lunch.
The eight of us plan to take lunch when Shin takes her lunch break. As much as I’d like to try to squeeze one more spree in before she does, I don’t want to make her work into her lunch break.
I sip in my strawberry banana smoothie as I watch Shin take off, Her hag of a manager throwing her a nasty look as she leaves. I roll my eyes and scroll through my list of items again.
Half of it is design ideas for the house and half is christmas present ideas. Shin slumps into the chair beside me and I push her the grilled cheese I ordered for her, She moans in a apperchaition as she stuffs her first bite into her mouth.
“Does everyone have their bag packed for tomorrow?” Jin asks, “I do,” I call out pulling away from my staw. “I also talked to Shin’s mom, convinced her to let me take her out of town for the rest of the break should we want to.” I smirk.
“How do you do that?” Jimin questions leaning forward to get into my face. “Do what?” I question, “Charm people’s parents, you make it look so easy.” He accuses. “It’s really easy you know, but I guess growing up without people trying to kiss up your ass helps too. But you just end up being the person that does the ass kissing.” I sigh.
“She makes a point,” Namjoon spoke up, “All you gotta do is tell a parent what they want to hear. ‘Oh I just love your daughter, she is so sweet and so smart. She doesn’t need me to look after her much and she is always so well behaved.’ stuff like that.” I shrug.
“Yeah but you also have to make sure you seem like a protector rather than a threat. ‘I’ll take care of your daughter ma’am, nothing will ever happen while she’s under my care. I promise.’ kind of stuff,” Namjoon adds, I nod in agreement.
“I’m just going to stick to scaring off pervs,” Jimin mumbles into his iced coffee. “I would too,” I muse, “Speaking of Pervs, Taehyung do you still plan to use your command on (y/n)?” Jimin asks. I watch as Taehyung chokes on his drink, “I am -not- a perv, if anyone here is a perv it you.” The boy sneers. “No, I am sexually sophisticated. You are the perv.” Jimin argues. “Bullshit! If anyone here is sexually sophisticated it’s me!” I snap, “And Taehyung is just sexually aggressive, you Jimin are the perv.” I straighten out. “Oh really?” Jimin questions with a scoffish tone, “Name one time I’ve been a perv.” He challenges.
“I’m sorry, did we forget who teased Shin about her perfectly cute bedpost yesterday, Or the person who showed up school in nothing but his mother’s robe like it was fucking Victoria secret fashion show, or that time—” I list, “I SAID ONE TIME!” Jimin shouts, cutting me off.
I smirk at him and he groans, “I thought so,” I muse. I look over at Shin who takes the last bite of her grilled cheese into her sandwich. “Can’t you people argue about something other than your sexuality?” Shin sighs, “We do talk about other things.” I scoff.
“We talk about clothes, and school, and what plans we have for the weekend.” I list off, “It seems like that’s all you talk about,” she mutters stubbornly. I scoff and cock my eyebrow at her challengingly. “Jimin,” I call, not bothering to take my eyes off Shin. “What can I do for you gorgeous?” I hear him answer, I can also hear the amused smirk that is undoubtedly smudged across his face.
“Where is the most beautiful place you’ve ever been?” I question, Jimin hums in thought. “Paris, the city in the dark makes you feel like you're walking in a sky full of stars.” He answers. “And you?” He questions in return, “The most beautiful place I’ve ever been is Namjoon’s house on Thanksgiving when it's filled with nothing my friends.” I answer with a smile. I watch as Shin’s eyes grow wide.
“(y/n) where do you like to go when you have time off?” Jimin questions, I hum for a moment thinking over the places I enjoy most. “No where,” I answer, “No where?” Jungkook asks. I shrug “No where” I nod. “Well that's a white lie, I like to look at the sky because it's simply endless and while I sit there looking at the sky I can go so far yet nowhere all at once.” I smile.
I took a glance at Shin to find her in awe, “See Honey, we are more than capable of having more intelligent conversations. But we enjoy the simple things, where the subjects don’t require much thought yet have just as much feeling.” I smile.
I glance down at my watch, “It's about time for you to get back to work Honey. I’ll see you later with more things to wrap.” I smirk before ushering her off to work. “Now,” I call to the rest of the group, “Let's get our shit handled today so we can blow this popsicle stand in the morning.” I grin.
Later that afternoon I went home, bags upon bags in tow. Yoongi dropped me off after dropping Shin off. Yoongi being the wonderful best friend he is, stayed up and helped me wrap what little gifts I couldn’t allow Shin to wrap.
Yoongi crashed on my couch that night while I stayed up later, unable to sleep. I stayed up and made breakfast food for the long ride and I packed and repacked bags. All and all not too healthy, but I did it anyway.
When morning broke through I had already made food for nine people and repacked my bags three different times. Yoongi woke up to a tray of food in his lap while I lined our bags near the door.
While Yoongi ate I changed into something more appropriate for travel. A comfortable pair of jeans and a large T-shirt. No makeup with my hair pulled up. I decided on a pair of slip-on shoes and one of my nicer pairs of tinted sunglasses, at least from some of the few I didn’t pack in my bags.
By the time I finished Yoongi had finished eating and was cleaning up his plate. I entered the kitchen to find him looking over the large amount of food I had cooked overnight, “stress cooking?” He questions with a smirk. A small pout forms on my lips, “It's not exactly stress but sure.” I mumble.
“What are you so worried about huh darling?” He mumbles coming over and wrapping his arms around me from behind. He presses a small kiss to the base of my neck, the action makes me relax a little. “I don’t wanna talk about it right now,” I sigh leaning into him, “Mmm, okay. You know where to find me when you want to.” He smiles before pressing another kiss to my neck and lets go.
It’s just after five when a line of cars pull up to the house, Jin climbs out of his truck and helps me load out bags into the bed. Yoongi climbs into the truck with him but not before I pass him some of the food I cooked. Behind Jin is Hobi and Jimin in a car filled with wrapped gifts, I make sure they get food as well until I get to the last car. Inside the car is Namjoon, Shin, Taehyung, and Jungkook. With Namjoon at the wheel the three others fill the back with Shin in between the two boys.
“Get in loser,” Namjoon smirks through the window, his sunglasses hanging on the very end of his nose as he looks over them. I roll my eyes and circle the car and climb into the passenger seat. I pass food to the three in back before buckling up, Namjoon looks over at me with a small smirk as I push on my sunglasses.
As soon as Hobi’s car started to move Namjoon followed after. The start of the ride is easy, the three in the back occupy themselves with their phones leaving me and Namjoon the quiet songs of the radio. I watch as the city turns into the farmland an hour and half into the car ride, by lunch Jin finds a gas station and pulls over.
The three in the back push each other in order to get out, all too stir crazy from the ride. While Namjoon fills the car up I walk into the store and find us some snacks. I end up walking out with four slushies and multiple bags of chips. The three youngest who had been running around chasing each other in the field next to us came to a stop before rushing over to me to grab their food. Each landing a sloppy kiss to the cheek as thanks.
Namjoon is pulling the pump out of the car when I walk back over to him and hand him his drink. “Thanks,” He smiles, I return it but quickly turn and make my way back into the car. When everyone else finishes using the bathroom, getting gas, and picking out food we all hit the road again. Only this time instead of quiet the car is filled with loud out of tune karaoke battles. Namjoon and I get into the whole rap battle, one that has Jungkook taking his camera out to film. I lose which means Namjoon gets the point, but I gain it back when we get into a vocalist battle.
The car does eventually go back to silence when the sun starts to set and the three in the back are lulled to sleep by the exhaustion of karaoke battles. I marvel at the sea of stars that comes out when the sun finally sets, I jump when I feel a hand rests itself on my thigh. My eyes dart down to the hand then the body attaches to it. Namjoon pays me no mind as he continues to drive. When I finally decide he’s not going to be moving it anytime soon I turn my gaze back to the night sky.
It's only a few minutes later that I jump again when I feel his thumb trace small circles, for whatever reason I can’t find myself to care. Maybe I’m touch starved, but I don’t bother moving his hand away. Instead I relax into my chair and close my eyes, the feeling on Namjoon’s hand and the sound of the car lulls me to sleep.
I wake up to blinding sunlight and the soft hum of the car, “did you drive all night?” I whisper over to Namjoon. The man behind the wheel nods sleepy, “Pull over,” I demand softly, “No it’s alright we’re almost there anyway.” Namjoon answers. “Joon. Pull. Over.” I repeat sternly. “(Y/n) there’s a gas station we’re going to stop at right up the road. I can make it until then.” He sighs quietly.
I wait until Jin’s truck pulls off the road, all three of our cars pull over to a gas station. I hop out and make Joon take the passenger side before I run inside and get a cup of coffee. I grab some food for us before making my way back to the car. I fill up the car with gas as Joon sleeps in the car with the three others. Jin comes over to check up on us before he makes the call to head out for the final stretch. The furniture doesn’t arrive until noon and I was hoping we could get there and get some painting done before then.
We all roll out again and I play some soft music as I drive, Namjoon and the three other passengers sound asleep in the car. I only drove two hours before Jin started pulling into a beach side neighborhood.  
I pull into the driveway behind Yoongi and hop out. I grin widely at the small villa in front of me. “We still have a few hours before the furniture gets here, Hobi and I loaded the paint in last so it should be right at the trunk door.” Yoongi informs as he opens the said door. I nod my head and grab some of the paint buckets.
“I’m going to go ahead and start the painting, The others are still sleeping and Namjoon drove all night. I want them to get some sleep,” I call Yoongi, he nods and leads me into the villa. I marvel at the rooms, to my luck they’re in good enough condition that I can just get painting.
I glance over at yoongi and Hobi, “Jin is sleeping in the truck so it’s just us for now. I think it’s best we try and get everything painted first.” Yoongi spoke over to me, I nod my head. “So we divide and conquer, I’ll take the living room and dining room, you can take the bathrooms and hallways, Hobi can do the bedrooms, and we’ll all pitch in on the kitchen.” I answer.
“I plan to start here and while it’s coat drys, I’ll start the dining room. It’s a faster process. You can try and do the same just remember the colors so you don’t get them mixed up.” I advise as I unwrap the paint buckets.
“Okat purple is for the dining room, Orange is for the living room.” I mumble setting the cans to the side, “Blue is for the hallways, and sand is for the bathrooms,” I call handing Yoongi his cans, “And cloud white is for the bedrooms.” I smile handing him the buckets. “And that leaves pink for the kitchen!” I grin shoving the cans off to the side. We all get to work quickly, I start just as I said I would and paint my first living room coat before starting the dining room. I did both coats quicker than I thought, however I went around the villa and opened all the windows and doors to allow the air to dry the paint faster. Not to mention the fumes of the paint could make someone pass out. The living room paint dried soon after so I painted the second coat, by the time I finished it the dining room coat was done drying.
As I paint on the dining room coat Jungkook wanders in with tired eyes and bed head. “Well good morning,” I smile, “Why did you start without me?” He mumbles. “We thought it was best if everyone who was sleeping should get sleep. We all started the painting because the furniture will be coming in soon so we should get as much done as possible.” I answer.
“You should have woken me up Noona, I slept all night,” He pouts, “It doesn’t matter now. I left you breakfast in the car, go eat and when you're done you can go see if your Hyungs need any help. If they don’t you can start the kitchen.” I instruct. The boy nods before turning and walking away. Once I finish the second coat I check my watch, the furniture should be here in less than an hour.
I check to see if the living room paint was doing alright to find that I probably wouldn’t need to add a third coat. If that's the case all the paint we’re using shouldn’t need more than two coats on the walls. With that in mind I go check on Yoongi who is the hallway painting over the walls a second time. “That's good, The paint shouldn’t need to coat the walls more than twice. The living room and dining room are drying now and they should be done.” I call to him, “I’ve only painted the bathrooms once, by the time I finish all these hallways they should all be dry. I’ll be good to do it myself. You should check if Hobi needs any help.” He informs me.
I nod my head and check each of the rooms only to find Hobi painting the third, “How are we doing?” I question, “Doing good. I’ve painted all the rooms at least once, the first room has been painted twice, I’m working on this room’s second coat now, and the last room is drying it’s first coat.” He reports. “Great job Hobi, the walls shouldn’t need more than two coats so the first room is done. Do you think you can take the rest yourself or do you need help?” I question, “Nope I got it from here Coriander.” He grins. I nod my head and make my way down stairs.
I find Jungkook in the kitchen starting on the paint, “Yoongi Hyung said to start on the kitchen when I asked if he needed any help.” He calls. “That's okay, The paint is thicker and only needs two coats so we’ve been finishing faster than planned.” I shrug leaning down to pick up a brush. “Don’t Noona! Let me do this room by myself!” He huffs, “It’ll go faster if I help Kookie,” I remind. “But you’ve done two rooms while I slept! Take a break and let me do this!” He demands, “Alright, well if that’s the case I’m going to start unloading the car.” I call to him as I leave the room.
I make my way to Yoongi’s big car and open the trunk. I pull out bag by bag and start to carry them into the house. Each bag had been labeled on what room it goes to, probably Hobi’s doing to make things easier. I pull all the bags into the living room and place them in piles sorted by room, once all the bags are inside I start to carry them to their designated rooms. Hobi finished not too long when I started carrying bags to the room and helped out. With the two of us we got half of the bags put up before the furniture arrived.
The arrival of the furniture woke up the rest of the party, although groggy they helped carry things in, mindful of the wet paint. Luckily the bedrooms were dry so Namjoon, Jin, and Jimin put together furniture Hobi, Shin, and I carried the rest of the bags to the rooms.
By nightfall we had the basics set up, we all had beds and places to sit and lay, a few shelves had been built and the kitchen was in the process of being set up. We ordered out that night because all of us were too tired to cook, after we ate we went straight to bed.
The next morning I woke up sore, and not in the good way. Despite this I still got up and ordered food considering we don’t have food in the house. Breakfast was eaten quickly, since everyone wanted to get things finished, Jin and Yoongi finished putting the furniture together while Hobi and Jungkook started working on the deck, Shin and Jimin unpacked and decorated, while Jin and I went to the local store to stock up on food and alcohol. Namjoon went to the store to stock up on household items like paper towels and cleaning supplies.
We all had the house done just past lunch and to say we felt satisfied was an understatement. I had even gone so far to put up the Christmas tree and line the walls with all the presents we bought. The only thing left to do was celebrate and we have a whole two weeks to do so.
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platypanthewriter · a month ago
Strangest 12/13
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After the events at the Byers’ house in season two, Steve finds Billy where Max stuck him--in the trunk of his car. 
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Steve and Max drank their hot chocolate in silence before wandering back to the garage, where El and Billy were applying the last licks of paint to the trim.  
“We’ll need to come back,” El said, putting her hands on her hips, and frowning from the trim, to Max, to Steve.  
“Guess it’s a real shop class then,” said Max, stalking over to carry the painted pieces carefully out of the way.  “Except El’s allowed to take shop already.”  She grinned between El and Billy, and Steve stepped closer, sensing a trap as her smirk widened.  “Maybe instead of shop, Billy should teach El home-ec.  Billy knows how to cook.”  
Billy stared at her, frowning warily, but El shrugged.
“All I need to know how to cook are waffles,” she told Steve, who snorted, coughing, and thought hard, watching Max and her brother work shoulder-to-shoulder as though they were used to it.  The sander filled the garage with its grating roar, and El plugged her ears.  
When it was done, Steve was ready.  “What about what goes on the waffles,” he asked triumphantly.  “I bet you don’t know how to make...those things.  You and Max could come over and we could make waffley things.”
El froze, then cocked her head, eyes narrowed.  “...IHOP things?”
Steve nodded, confident.  “He’s good at everything.”
There was a clatter as Billy dropped the board he was holding, and he and Max whispered furious insults at each other as they got it back in place.  Billy turned to stare over, his cheeks red, and his smile strained but present.  “Why the hell you telling this girl I’m some kind of...jam expert,” he asked, as Max glared up at him.
“When the hell you been making jam?” she hissed.  “I never saw you make jam.”
“It’s fine,” Steve waved his hands.  “We can ask Ms. Williams to supervise.  And like—whipped cream.  I bet he can make whipped cream,” he suggested daringly, only to look over to see Billy looking deeply unimpressed.  
“Yeah, anyone can whip cream, Harrington, glad you got such high estimation of my—”
Eleven stood as though struck.  “You can make those things?”
“Don’t you think Max and Eleven should come over, and we can have waffles?” Steve asked Billy, widening his eyes, and trying to send yes, Billy, say yes, telepathically.  
Max rolled her eyes and focused her glower back on the edge she was sanding.  “You know it’ll happen now Steve mentioned waffles.  Can we play your Atari?”
Billy stared down at her head, flicking a weirded-out glance at Steve.  “Y-yeah, we can...get some fruit, or something.  I can...figure out jam,” he told her, nudging Max with his elbow.  She nudged him back with her shoulder, and he shook his head, smiling uncertainly at Steve.
“Oh.  And they want us to come for waffles,” Steve told him.  “At the Byers’.
Billy blinked.  “Will’s house?”
“Tomorrow.  Will must have told us to ask you, like, ninety times,” Max bit out, rolling her eyes.  “He’s gonna cling like a koala.  He’s gonna clamp onto your leg.”  
It should have been a cute thought, and Steve smiled, but Billy’s shoulders clenched, and he stalked off to clatter around in the corner with the skis.  Max glared after him, biting her lips, and then kicked the sawhorse, twice.  
El blinked between them.  “...but you like Will?  Don’t you like Will?”
She looked betrayed, and Steve couldn’t help laughing.  
Neither could Max.  She grinned a little sardonically at El.  “I like Will fine.  Everybody likes Will.”  She stuck her hands in her back pockets, sighing.  “...just...glad my big brother found a kid he likes, I guess.  Great, right?  Just too bad I couldn’t deliver.”
“Oh!” El said, and turned a glare on Billy too, and Steve winced, stepping forward, just as Billy turned the Shopvac on and the noise drowned everything out.  He wandered back over, vacuuming carefully all around the sander and the sawhorses.  He ran the wand over the wood as he brushed it with a dry paintbrush.
He was pretty obviously taking way too long, and finally Max grabbed El’s hand and drug her up into the entryway.  
Max cleared her throat.  “I—I gotta talk to my mom.  Tonight.”
“I’ll go with you,” El offered, but Max shook her head.  Billy finally switched the vacuum off, and Steve resisted the urge to just walk over and hug him, or smack his ass.
“No, I just—I just need to—tell her.  I don’t—” Max said,  taking a deep, shaky breath.  “I don’t know—we can’t—I don’t know what—”
“If you need anything,” Steve said lamely, then steadier, “—if—you could stay in my room.  If she—if you need somewhere to um, to go—”
“Your room,” Billy repeated, squinting at him, while El nodded.  
“We can help you move out,” she told Max, who laughed.
“My mom’s not just going to leave,” she said hoarsely.  “M-maybe she’ll listen, maybe—maybe we could go—we could stay with Grammie a while and—and that would—” she stopped, pinching the bridge of her nose, and taking a deep breath, before looking back up with dry eyes.  “I—maybe.  I have to—I have to try and tell her.”
“Sure,” Billy sighed, his mouth quirked.
“I can help too,” El said again, her voice smaller, and Max reached over and squeezed her hand.  
“Yeah.  Thanks, El.  I—I need a ride home, it’s almost five—”
“Yeah, okay,” Steve nodded.
“Bring her here, and make Steve stay in my room,” Billy said, smirking at Max, and she relaxed a little as she shuddered, making a face.  
“Ew!  Eugh.  You’re so nasty—” the rest got muffled as El hugged her, and Max froze, then cautiously hugged her back.
Billy snorted, squinting at them, opened his mouth, and glanced at Steve before closing it.  He sighed.  “...Steve can drop you off.  I’ll clean up here.”
 When Steve got back, he yelled for Billy, and didn’t hear anything.  There wasn’t a lit cigarette glowing out by the pool, and Billy’s bedroom and bathroom doors were wide open, so Steve prowled around the house a few times before going in and trying his walkie-talkie—but it buzzed from Billy’s room, so he tossed it on the bed, and followed it, burying his head in the comforter.
He could only groan into the comforter so long, so he got his homework out, sat for a while staring at it, and put it away.  He went to clean up the garage, and Billy already had—the remaining box of Steve’s mom’s stuff was moved to a shelf, and all the sawdust had been swept away.  Billy’d moved his car back inside, and left a clear space for Steve’s, and Steve sighed, and grabbed a couple bags of marshmallows to restock the only cupboard he used.  After a few episodes of reruns in space, he turned off Kirk and Spock and muttered every swear word he knew into the pillows in the fort.  “Where the fuck are you,” he asked the Christmas lights, staring up, and hoping Billy wasn’t the snow, somewhere.  He took a deep breath, and then another, his eyes stinging.
His stomach growled.  
He opened the fridge and frowned in, sighing at the tubs of things like margarine, and sour cream, that he couldn’t just eat.  
He swiveled to study the coats by the door, trying to decide whether Billy had one, then just grabbed one, and a scarf and hat, and hauled the armload out and around.  “Where’s my knight,” he called softly.  
In the darkness, Billy snorted.  “My king,” he slurred.  “He calls for aid?” he mumbled, and Steve reached towards his voice and yanked him close by the sweatshirt, pulling him into a kiss that tasted like 120 proof sawdust.  “Jesus,” he whispered against Billy’s mustache, leaning in for another taste.  “You suck down a whole fifth of whiskey as soon as I drove off?”
“Shut up,” Billy hissed, shoving away, and Steve followed, following the sloshing noise of a bottle.  
“You coming back in?”
“Fuck off,” Billy’s footsteps crunched away through the snow, and Steve stopped.  
“Uh, I brought you a coat.  And stuff.”
“Fuck off,” Billy hissed, unevenly, Steve thought, and he stood for a second, wondering whether this was a time to listen, or whether he should think harder, like usual.  
“Um,” he cleared his throat, grimacing.  “Uh, just if you’re gonna stay out, put a coat on, here.”
“Harrington—” Billy snarled, crunching toward him in the snow, and Steve bit his lips together.
“Okay,” he told the angry voice in the dark, “I’ll go, I’ll go, just—just take the coat, okay, just—”
“Give it to me, you fucking sheepdog,” Billy’s hand brushed his arm, then grabbed the coat, and Steve stepped back.  “I’ll wear the damn coat, I won’t fall in the damn pool, go watch a fucking musical.”
“Yeah, okay,” Steve laughed, and let his eyes close for a second to take a few deep, easy breaths.  “Okay, I’m—I’m going,” he called over his shoulder, turning back to the house, and rubbing his hands to warm them.  
“She’s a little bitch,” Billy yelled, and Steve stopped.  
“Why the fuck you want me hanging around my step-sister, Harrington?” Billy called, laughing.  “You know she shot me up with that shit.  I coulda died.  Now you want us to make nice?”
“She’s...your sister,” Steve said, feeling wrong-footed.  “ can’t—”
“I can’t what?” Billy asked, the snow crunching under his feet as he stepped up to breathe smoke and whiskey in Steve’s face.  “Can’t hate her?  Can’t wish she’d fucking die?”
“You don’t wish she’d die,” Steve told him, sighing.  “You can’t—”
“Oh, I can,” Billy said, laughing.  “I can, Your Majesty.  I’m not—” 
“Stop it,” Steve argued.  “You don’t—”
“You think?” Billy asked, in the slow, smiley way he’d had right before walking into the Byers’ house, and attacking Lucas for no reason.  “You think I don’t hate her?”
Steve reached out in the dark until he found Billy’s chest.  “Put your damn coat on.  I think…” he trailed off, trying to figure it out, as Billy waited, shivering against his hand.  Steve tried to imagine what it would have been like, thinking your mom had left, living with Neil Hargrove.  He got a handful of sweatshirt and yanked Billy closer, imagining him coming home every day to Neil yelling, or—or yanking him around, or hitting him—“Bi—Billiam,” he stumbled, avoiding Billy’s name, and Billy snorted a laugh.  “...does, um.  Does your dad hit Max?”
“Why the fuck would he hit Max,” Billy growled back.
“Why the fuck would he hit you,” Steve hissed, shaking him, but bit his lip, breathing Billy’s breath, and feeling him tremble.  “He didn’t hit Max, did he.”
“Fuck you,” Billy spat back, sounding a little choked.  
“He brought a kid home he didn’t hit,” Steve whispered, and Billy shoved him off.  
“Fuck you!”
“He’s nice to her, isn’t he,” Steve thought aloud, blowing into his cupped fingers.  “Because of her mom—”
“He’s not nice to her,” Billy gritted out.  “He treats her like shit, he wants her to—he thinks he needs to fix her with a strong father figure,” he said, snorting.  
“He doesn’t hit her, though, I bet,” Steve pressed, and Billy laughed.  
“Fuck you,” he said again, lighting another cigarette.  
“He knows his last wife left him, and he doesn’t wanna piss this one off too much—” Steve muttered, steepling his hands to think.  Billy laughed roughly, his voice shaking with the cold, and Steve sighed.  “Put the coat on, trespasser.  ...he knows he can’t hurt Max or her mom, right,” Steve whispered, putting it together, “—so he takes it out on you.  Whenever he’s pissed—”
“He’s not like that,” Billy hissed back.  “I don’t know what the fuck you’re thinking, but he’s not—it’s—it’s not—”
“Yeah, he is,” Steve shot back.  “Good dads don’t fucking hit kids.”  Billy took a shaky breath, and Steve crunched a couple steps closer to where the orange light of his cigarette lit his face and curls as he inhaled.  “ don’t hate Max,” Steve said again, gaining confidence.  “You like her too—” 
“I don’t give a shit—” Billy growled.
“You’re jealous as hell,” Steve decided.  “She moved here and she had like five friends in a day.  I fought for her, I fought you.”
“Yeah, we all know who you’re gonna pick,” Billy said, turning away with a jagged laugh.  “I see you testing me out.  Shit.  Screw you, Harrington, I can keep it up, jesus.  I can do this, okay.”
“...what,” Steve asked, caught off-balance.
“Making sure I know my place,” Billy whispered.  “I get it, Harrington.  I get to stay if I can behave.”  
“Shit, is that what your dad did?!” Steve burst out.  “What a shithead, what’d he do, say he’d throw you out?” 
“...nah,” Billy said, but he let Steve get close again, so Steve could see his eyes, resigned in the warm glow of the cigarette.  “That’s you.”
“I won’t—” Steve protested, grimacing.
“Dad wants me home,” Billy said, laughing.  “Says I’m his problem.”
“You’re not a problem,” Steve told him stoutly, and Billy laughed.  
“Yeah, I am—”
“Sometimes you are,” Steve agreed, stomping his feet to warm up.  “Sometimes everybody is though, I mean.  You’re not—you’re more than a problem, you’re—” he waved his hands in frustration, then grabbed Billy’s forearms.  “You’re Billy.”
“Yeah, that’s the problem,” Billy said, laughing, but his smile looked softer.  “Right there.”
“Not a problem,” Steve said nonsensically.  “You’re not.  You—”
“You keep saying he hits kids,” Billy said, leaning closer, and breathing smoke out over the dim orangey light like a dragon.  The smoke whorled around Billy’s hands, and Steve’s, holding his wrists.  “He doesn’t hit kids, Harrington, he only ever hit me—”
“You were a kid,” Steve shot back, shaking Billy, ineffectively, by his forearms.  “You—you’re his kid.  He hits you.”
“Doesn’t hit Max,” Billy whispered.  “Problem is me, Harrington—”
“No,” Steve shook him again, leaning close enough their arms were pressed between them.  “Your dad’s an asshole, that’s the—”
“Fucking...hate a little girl,” Billy said, looking down, then up again, deep into Steve’s eyes.  “Little—fucking—skateboarder—girl, Your Lordship.  I wish she got hit.”  He said it again, slower.  “I wish he hurt her.  That fucked up enough?  I wish he fucking—grabbed her hair and held her face down next to the stove burner.  ‘M’I still not the problem?”  He laughed at Steve’s expression, and Steve wondered what it looked like. 
“B—Knight,” Steve interrupted, but he didn’t have a good answer, so Billy grinned like a carnivore, and kept going.  
“When I can’t breathe I wish he’d hurt her instead,” Billy whispered, yanking his arms free of Steve’s hold, and stepped back.  “You can tell she doesn’t have any fucking idea what to do,” he rasped.  “Just standing there watching, trying to get him to stop, even, and I’m thinking I wish it was her.”
“Jesus,” Steve breathed, trying to keep track of Billy’s shape when he turned away, his body hiding the glow of the cigarette.
“Starting to see the cracks, finally?” Billy called back, laughing, and Steve jumped, squinting back into the darkness.  “I see her there and I want her to hurt—”
“Or wishing he’d stop hurting you, maybe,” Steve suggested.  
“Yeah, that’s what I should be hoping, isn’t it,” Billy laughed raggedly.  “What the fuck kinda monster watches her run off and wishes she was drowning too?”
“No, you don’t,” Steve argued, grabbing Billy’s arm to yank him around, to see his face, and Billy shoved him.  Steve stumbled backwards in the snow and fell on his ass, the cement around the pool jarring every bone in his body through the hard-packed snow of their footprints.  
“Fuck,” Billy whispered, dropping next to him, and patting at him clumsily in the dark.  “Shit, Harrington, go—go back inside.  I’m the fucking problem, Harrington, me—not my dad, not Max—” he cut off with a groan, shoving away again and stalking off.
“Stop,” Steve said breathlessly, pushing himself back up to his feet to follow, and Billy laughed again.  
“Stop,” Billy whined.  
“B-babe,” Steve gritted out, stomping after him.  “Quit it, jesus.”
“Waaah, is the truth scary, Your Majesty?” Billy asked, half crying, half laughing as he staggered to a stop, grabbing a scrubby tree for balance, silhouetted against the light of the house.  “Stop it,” he mimicked, like Steve was a whiny toddler.  “Ennnh, fucking baby—you seeing the cracks, now?”
“Been spackling them over,” Billy laughed.  “Gotta keep it together.  Smooth surface for Steve, right?  Fill those cracks in.  Sand ‘em over, long as you—long as you don’t look close.  Just—I’ve just been hiding the cracks, Harrington, you gotta—you gotta hide the cracks.  But I—I can’t—can’t hide where...Max is,” he laughed, but it sounded harsh.  “That crack’s too big, y’know?  Can’t shovel enough in there, you see it, right?  You see now.”
Steve waited, squinting into the darkness.  “Uh,” he said, into the silence.  “...I know you’re—”
“Dirt gets in the cracks,” Billy whispered, from less than a yard away, and Steve startled again.  “Rots in there.  All the broken places.  Gathers flies and—and maggots—” he trailed off, laughing the kind of laugh that you had to listen carefully to to tell whether it was tears.
“Um,” Steve cut him off, and Billy paused, breathing in wet pants.  Steve bit his lip, thinking.  “Like...fruit?” he finally asked, into the silence, and Billy cracked up laughing.  
“Yeah, your majesty,” he finally answered.  “You’re right, I’m a fruit!  All rotten in the bruised places—I’m a fag, I’m a—I’m a fucking—”
“Shut up, that’s dumb,” Steve gritted out.  “You—you’re not—you’re a—you’re my goddamn boyfriend, not an apple.”
“You saw, you can fucking see it now, I know you—”
“No, listen, shut up,” Steve hissed, putting his hands in his pockets so he wouldn’t grab his drunk idiot and shake him.  “Listen.  Listen.  Apples bruise, okay, they rot, they do that, yeah.  People,” he stepped closer, “—people—I’m going in, I swear, I’ll go inside, but listen—people heal, okay.  You’re bruised, yeah, you—” he whispered, but he couldn’t take Billy’s silence, and put a hand out to find his stubbly face, rubbing his thumb over skin sticky with tears.  “He bruised you.  Maybe—maybe he cracked you, I don’t know—”
Billy leaned into his hand, and took a shaky breath.  
“You’re not a banana,” Steve growled.  “You—you’re not gonna turn black and rot away ‘cause he slammed you around, okay, you’re not—”
“It’s inside,” Billy whispered.  “S’not—s’nothing he did, I’m just—”
Steve opened his mouth, closed it, and then smiled slowly, feeling like the Grinch when he had a wonderful, awful idea.  “Hey,” he leaned in close.  “You saying your mom is bad at makin’ babies?”
“No!” Billy said instantly, and Steve resisted a victorious snort.  
“Yeah,” he agreed.  “She’d beat you up.  She’s a good mom, right?”
Billy growled and bit lightly at his hand, and Steve grabbed his face, ignoring Billy’s snickering, and the tongue licking his fingers. 
He stroked Billy’s cheeks.  “She’s a good mom, and she made a good kid, right?”
Billy shoved him away again.  “...shut your damn face, Harrington.”
“Yeah,” Steve nodded, listening to him crunch through the snow, and squinting towards his voice.  Steve sighed, and turned back towards the door.  “If you’re bruised, it’s his fault!” he yelled back, and then nearly fell on his ass, flailing his arms, as a snowball swiped his head.  
Billy was still laughing as Steve stomped the snow off his feet, and closed the back door.  
He boiled water, measured out ingredients, unwrapped candy canes, made hot chocolate, and cracked the window, only to hear a thin “PISS OFF, HARRINGTON” from the treeline.  He closed it again.  
 Steve waited hours, then finally stuck his head back out the back porch and yelled as he was grabbed by a black shape leaning over the edge of the porch.  Only the smell of cigarettes and whiskey kept him from punching Billy’s face, but he just leaned into him, his heart thumping with adrenaline.  “Jesus,” he whispered, pulling his half-frozen boyfriend closer.
“...fuck took you so long,” Billy slurred, and Steve grabbed him and shoved him inside, pulling a blanket off the couch and wrapping him up.  Billy curled easily against him, and Steve let them both drop onto the couch with a sigh, and wrapped his dumb blanketed boyfriend up in his arms.  
“Whaddaya mean it took me so long,” Steve growled.  “You told me not to go out there!”
“Yeah, but you don’ listen,” Billy mumbled into his shirt, and Steve sighed.
“You waiting for invitations now, trespasser?” he asked, and Billy squirmed closer.  
“Still came an’ got me.”
“Don’t wait for that,” Steve told him, rubbing his back as he started to shiver.  “Come in when you get cold, shithead.”
“Mmmm,” Billy laughed, warm against his neck.  “Maybe you thought ‘b-bout it a little more,” he slurred.
“No, listen,” Steve told him, shaking him gently.  “What if I’d fallen asleep, babe.  What if I went somewhere.”
“Mmmn,” Billy shook his head, nuzzling deeper in the blankets, and Steve took a deep breath, and manhandled his drunk slug of a boyfriend until he could cup his face.
“Billy,” he whispered, and Billy swallowed, trying to squirm away.  “No, ssh, c’mere, Billy Hargrove.”
“...listening,” Billy sighed, his mouth quirked, but his eyes fixed blearily on Steve’s face.  
“Need you to promise,” Steve told him, and Billy nodded vaguely.  “No, Billy, listen.  You’re in trouble, so I’m calling you Billy.”
Billy frowned, biting his lips together.
Steve kissed them.  “I—I love you.  I got feeblings, right?  So—so, you uh, you have to be nicer to me, okay?”  Billy burst out laughing, and Steve felt himself flush.  “Billy,” he whispered again.
“What happens when I’m in trouble with Steve Harrington,” Billy whispered back, smiling.  He was starting to shiver, and Steve stroked his hands over his boyfriend’s cold face, and neck, and frozen-feeling ears.
“We have to talk like this,” Steve told him, leaning in to press another kiss to Billy’s freezing-cold lips, and pulling back as Billy tried to deepen it.  “Pay attention, babe.  Trespasser.” 
“Okay,” Billy nodded, licking his lips.
“You have to—you gotta come in when you’re cold, okay?  You gotta come in out of the cold.”
“You come back,” Billy whispered, holding his freezing-cold hands over Steve’s on either side of his face.
“Yeah, I-I will, I’ll come get you,” Steve agreed, adjusting his hands on Billy’s face to cover more cold skin.  “But—” he took a shaky breath, “—you have to promise—”
“You’ll come back,” Billy said again, frowning.  “You—you gonna...stop coming?  Harrington?”  He laughed, an explosion of whiskey and smoke, and Steve made a face.
“I’m not gonna—that’s what I’m saying,” Steve hissed.  “You can’t just…you…”
“I’m gonna wait,” Billy whispered, his eyes bleary with whiskey.  “Wait for you.  You gotta come get me.  You don’t…” he took a wet, shaky breath, swallowing hard, “—you don’t want me anymore, don’t come get me.  You get...done.  If—if you’re done.  With me.”
“What if I have to take a shit,” Steve said, shaking him a little.  “What if—what if I eat two-week old Chinese food, and I shit for two hours, and you die, Bi—babe, what if you freeze to death—”
“That’s half a month,” Billy slurred, frowning at him.  He squeezed Steve’s hands, turning his head to kiss Steve’s thumb.  “Don’t eat that.”
“What if I fall asleep,” Steve whispered, starting to shake a little himself.  His eyes blurred with tears, and he blinked them away.  “What if I go to sleep and you go have a smoke and you don’t come back because you’re waiting for me to get up and get you.  I gotta get up and check to see if you’re alive?  I—I can’t sleep when you aren’t next to me?!  I can’t sleep because you might fucking die?!”
“No!  No,” Billy shook his head, wide-eyed, and yanked Steve closer, yanking the blanket around both of them.  “Sorry.  Sorry, shit.  Sorry.”
“Come in when it’s cold,” Steve said again, into to cold bulk of Billy’s shoulder, trying to sound stern, but his voice cracked and wobbled.  “I—I can’t—you gotta—Billy, you gotta come in—”
“I will, I will,” Billy muttered, wrapping both shivering arms around him, and squeezing until Steve’s bones felt like they creaked together.  Steve breathed against Billy’s shoulder, smelling snow, and cigarettes, and he turned his head to breathe against the damp skin of Billy’s neck.  Billy kissed his head.  “...I’ll come in, okay.  Harrington.  You can sleep.”
“I—I’ll just come get you,” Steve mumbled, pretty certain he’d be staring at the ceiling and jumping at imagined noises anyway, and Billy groaned into his hair.  “I’ll stay up for you—”
“...shit, no.  Fuck.  You—you’re right.  Not on you if I’m dumb.  I promise,” he said, pushing Steve away—he struggled, hanging on—so his still-shivering hands could cup Steve’s face, and Billy could look as serious as possible, drunk as hell.  “Harrington,” he whispered.  “Stevie.”
Steve laughed, startled, as his face heated.  “Nobody calls me that,” he whispered back, starting to snicker, and trying to duck his head.
“Stevie,” Billy said, squeezing Steve’s cheeks with a frown.  Steve tried to laugh through fishlips, and Billy smirked.  “Listen,” he said, and Steve nodded, blinking rapidly to try and get his eyes to clear.  “—’m gonna be more...careful, okay,” Billy said softly.  “I’ll—I’ll do better, okay, I’ll be good.  You don’t—you don’t have to—babysit me, okay.”
“‘M’a goo’babys’tr,” Steve mumbled, trying to talk through his squished lips.
“Gonna help you with that,” Billy sighed.  “With me.  Gonna help you make everybody safe, okay?  You don’t have to.”
“...okay,” Steve nodded, watching his face.
“Don’t have to babysit me,” Billy repeated.  “I’ll babysit me.”
“’re sure,” Steve pressed, laughing, so Billy wouldn’t notice his eyes—they were stinging, and probably red—or how hard he was trying not to just...stomp off and scream, scrabbling at his hair.  He wanted to just hide in his room again, have his little baby tantrum somewhere his boyfriend couldn’t see, but Billy’s hands held him fast.  Steve took a deep breath, and it caught in his lungs, so he took another.  “Love you,” he whispered, and Billy’s mouth quirked disbelievingly.  “Love you,” Steve emphasized.  “I’m not gonna let you die, so—so don’t tell me you—don’t say you’re gonna be okay, don’t lie to me if—if you need me to—do that.  For you.  Keep you safe.”
Billy watched his face for a long while—whole minutes, it felt like, and then shook his head.  “I’ll come in.  Harrington.  I—I promise, I’ll come in.  And if...if I...can’t take care,” he said roughly, “—I promise I-I’ll tell you.  I won’t lie to you, I’ll say—”
Steve’s tear ducts overreacted and spilled entirely over, while his lungs made a weird noise more appropriate for braking trucks, so he tried to jerk away and get to—somewhere else, where nobody had to calm him down when he wasn’t even the one having a problem, but Billy yanked him into his shivering shoulder again, muttering into his hair.
“Jesus shit,” he whispered.  “Christ, Harrington, I’m—sorry, sorry, fuck.  Sorry.  Shit.  I don’t—I won’t—I won’t let anything happen to me, jesus.  I promise, your majesty.  I’m your knight, right?  I gotta—I gotta be strong, right.  Keep myself safe.  Can’t make you worry about your knight.  Don’t be broken, holy shit—”
“—’m not broken, just—just don’t die in my yard,” Steve sniffled, laughing, and then made another noise like a squashed cat as Billy’s arms tightened.  “I just—I fucking love you,” Steve whispered.
“Yeah,” Billy told him.  “Yeah.  Jesus.  Sorry.  I can—I know you’d come for me, right, I don’t—I don’t need to freak you out.”
“A-asshole,” Steve whispered shakily, groaning.  “—f-fucking...prick.”
“Yeah,” Billy agreed, laughing a little unsteadily himself, and burying his face in Steve’s hair.  “Yeah.  Sorry.  I’m so sorry, shit, I’ll help, okay.  You can—you can relax some, I’ll help you.  Jesus, sorry—sorry—”
“Fucking dipshit,” Steve slid his arms around Billy, squirming further into the blanket.  “God, you, you asshole.”
“Mmn,” Billy nodded, sighing shakily, and kissing his ear.
“...sweetie-pie,” Steve tried, and Billy started laughing, his breath hot against Steve’s head.
 The next day, El drug Max over while Billy and Steve stood around smoking.  They were hauling four full trash bags and a trifold cardboard presentation board that brought bitter memories up in Steve of middle-school science class.  
“The hell is all that,” Billy bit out, glaring at the bags, but he yanked his keys out of his jeans and opened Steve’s trunk.
“Max’s mom won’t leave,” El reported, and Max’s eyes went red and shiny.  Billy hesitated, then grabbed more bags and put them in the trunk, but Steve noticed he was gentle.  
“Is this case?” Steve guessed, and Max shook her head, sniffling.  She swallowed hard, kicking a rock into the side of somebody’s car, and her tears didn’t spill over.  
Billy’s shoulders were nearly up around his ears, and Steve squeezed his shoulder, stepping between he and Max like Steve was some kind of wall.  He cleared his throat, feeling dumb.  
“She won’t listen,” Max said in a weird, raspy voice.  “She says not to worry.”
“I can blow up his brain,” El said, in the vaguely monotone voice she had when she was the last line of defense, and Billy twitched in Steve’s peripheral vision.  
“Don’t do anything,” Max hissed.  “She knows about you.  She’d be so—she’d hate me.  I gotta—I’ll try again.  Shit.  I shouldn’t have to deal with this.”
El shook her head solemnly, sighing.  
“You can bring her to our place,” Steve said, again, feeling useless.  “If, uh.”
“How come we have to figure this shit out,” Max growled, kicking another rock.  “She’s the mom.”
“...she sure knows how to pick ‘em,” Steve snorted, and Billy turned to glare at him, but Max laughed.
“Yeah,” she sighed.  “My dad, uh, he was...he wasn’t...great either.”  She rubbed her face roughly, groaning, and El dropped an arm around her.  
Bily opened his mouth, glaring, then closed it, and Steve took advantage of the girls’ bowed heads to blow him a kiss.  Billy smirked, digging his fingers into his forearms, and stalked off, lighting up a few cars away.
“Waffles,” declared El, after tucking Max’s hair behind her ear, seeing tears, and freezing in place for several seconds, her hands twitching with indecision.
“What,” Max whispered, wiping her nose.  
“M-Mrs. Byers,” El said.  “And, um, Will, remember, they um, they invited us.  Waffles.  She said she could make waffles.”
“So what?” Max snorted, rubbing her eyes with her sleeves.  
“So,” El said, then bit her lips together.  
“ want waffles right away?” Steve asked, half tempted to chase Billy, and tell him it was fine he didn’t want his dad murdered, but feeling obligated to stick it out with two girls, one of which was crying, and the other one looking like she wanted to.  “Uh, we could take you girls uh, somewhere, before Will’s—”
“I’m fine,” Max laughed hoarsely.  “Waffles aren’t gonna solve my problems, El.”
El bit her lips together, her eyes glistening with tears, and Steve wondered about the El-scale—what was a one-waffle problem, or a whole-box-of-Eggos problem, and what it told her about Max, hearing that this was a problem too big for waffles.
 Once El just gave up and hugged Max, an awkward moment, as Max’s eyes begged him for help, Steve wandered over to where Billy was smoking, and bumped elbows.  “...El won’t kill your dad,” he whispered, and Billy raised his eyebrows, eyeing him doubtfully.  
“You sure about that?” he asked.  “Kinda sounded like she might no matter what Max said.”
“Um,” Steve said, grimacing, and remembering the stories of El just...breaking necks.  No great loss, he thought to himself, then cleared his throat guiltily.  “We can talk to her.  Tell her you, uh, you don’t want her to—”
“That’s why?” Billy snarled, turning to toss his cigarette away.  “That’s why she shouldn’t?  It’s murder, Harrington—”
“He hit you,” Steve pointed out, mumbling, and Billy reached out, glanced around, and then pulled his hand back and put it in his pocket.  
“ did you,” Billy hissed back, but he was grinning, a little.  
“I didn’t want to,” Steve growled.  “And I won’t, ever again, I’d never—”
“Yeah, sure,” Billy grinned, but it looked soft, and so did his lips.  Steve cleared his throat, so many protests swarming his mouth that he couldn’t get any of them out.  “You’d never hit me until I’m standing in front of the mugs and you want the marshmallows—”
“I might elbow you—” Steve protested, and Billy leaned in, smirking.  
“Until I tease you about your feeblings,” he whispered, and Steve raised his arm to punch Billy’s shoulder, and glared at it in despair.  Billy threw an arm around his shoulders, and yanked him close.  “’s not the same, Harrington,” he whispered.  “I know you want me around.”
“He does too, he loves you, he has to,” Steve argued, and Billy laughed, rubbing his face.  “He does,” Steve insisted.  “He knows you, he’s known you forever!  He loves you. He—he has to—”
“Not sure your math works out,” Billy told him, and he looked fond, which had Steve lurching closer, licking his own lips, until he remembered they were in the school parking lot.
“Not gonna kiss you right now,” Steve informed him, stiffly, “—but I’m right.  If he doesn’t love you, he—” Steve tried to think of an option, remembering chubby-cheeked Billy from the Christmas photos, in his awful knitted overalls.  Steve frowned hard into the middle distance.  “...maybe he’s an alien,” he said slowly, and Billy dissolved into snickers, his face pink-cheeked around his fingers.  
“I don’t get how your brain works,” he whispered.
“It works better than your dad’s,” Steve shot back, sliding his hand down and around Billy’s forearm, where he’d drawn the hearts, and rubbing his thumb over Billy’s sleeve.  “We won’t let El kill your dad, okay, she likes you, she likes Will, she won’t do anything to—to you, she won’t—hurt your family.”  He groaned.  “How come he’s such an asshole?!  Jesus,” Steve asked the air around them, waving his arms, and Billy laughed.  “Come on,” Steve told him. “—we’re going to Will’s for waffles, remember?”
Billy shook his head like he was trying to clear it, but he didn’t argue, and when they piled into the car, he called shotgun and dropped next to Steve.  He grabbed Steve’s hand, trembling for some reason, but when Steve tried to ask, Billy took a deep breath and started an argument with Max and El about whether they needed to bring anything to dinner.  Billy and Steve both felt greasing the wheels with unfamiliar adults was wise, while Max and Eleven sounded perplexed.
El was eventually the only holdout on gifts for Mrs. Byers—from her obvious alarm, Steve suspected she was worried she’d been breaking some unknown taboo—so Steve swung into Bradley’s Big Buy and watched as Billy grabbed flowers, then stared at the sparkling cider.  He spun slowly in place, and Max, picking up his nerves, grabbed and put back four different kinds of fruit.  El advocated filling an entire cart with whipped cream, and Steve let her fill a basket.
“Grab that sparkly juice,” Steve advised, always inclined to charm parents.  “Y’know, that,” he said, waving at the Martinelli’s, and Billy and Max hoisted two bottles under each arm and followed each other to the checkout in silence.  El frowned at them, then slowly did the same, and Steve tried not to laugh, watching the three of them in a solemn row, bottles under their arms, like they were carrying munitions and rations to the front lines.  He considered telling Billy they could go back that night and use the spare cider to fill his pool, then considered the way Billy’s fingers were tight and pale against the bottles, and leaned to whisper, “Surprised you know what to do with an invite, Trespasser.”
“Thought I was your knight,” Billy whispered back, and Steve stared at his smirk.  He was leaning in for a kiss when Max’s foot tromped on the arch of his foot.
 At the Byers’, Billy drummed his thumbs on the steering wheel, and grabbed Steve’s arm when he started to climb out of the car.  “So this is it.  This is—this is what you’re doing for Will.  Now.  Momma Byers and ‘Hopper’—” he still enunciated ‘Hopper’ like it was in quotes, “—they’re watching, today is—now.”
“What?” Steve cocked his head, listening, but also watching Max and El haul bags of cider towards House Byers, and trying to evaluate how many of the Party were pressed against the windows.  It looked like an entire school bus in there.  He sighed, shutting his car door.
“At IHOP,” Billy hissed.  “You said you’d—you’d be—queer at people.  So Will’d know what to do.  See what his mom said.  That’s why he wants us here.”
“Oh,” Steve said, swallowing as the terrifying thought of telling Joyce Byers he was queer reared its ugly head.  Maybe I can get her alone before we eat, he told himself, grimacing.  She’s—she’s nice, maybe—maybe she won’t be—too angry.  He took a deep breath.  Better me than Will, anyway.  “I—yeah, maybe, I—” 
He was still squinting at the front windows of the Byers’ house, wondering how the kids hadn’t figured out they were visible, no matter how much they made shushing motions at each other, when Billy came around the car, wiping his palms on his jeans.  He yanked Steve out, and grabbed him like they were about to square dance.  Steve stared at his face, the landscape whirling behind Billy as he dipped Steve into an open-mouthed kiss.  
Steve swore into it, throwing his arms around Billy’s shoulders, then relaxed when he didn’t get dropped on his ass, and tried not to think about the muscles holding him a foot off the ground.  “Giving me so many feeblings,” he mumbled, and Billy did nearly drop him, laughing, but swung him back upright to a chorus of whoops and whistles from the house.
Billy froze, spinning to stare at the kids crowding onto the porch—it looked like Lucas had even brought his little sister, Steve thought, distracted by his heart thudding in his chest, half with adrenaline, and half with all his blood rushing to his dick.  He took a deep breath, watching Billy brace his feet like he expected to get punched.  “Shit, Harrington—I—I—fuck, I thought—”
“It’s fine,” Steve told him, “—come on, it’s okay—”, grabbed his hand, and tugged him towards the house.
Billy made a soft noise in the back of his throat, and didn’t move.  
“Okay, stay there for a sec,” Steve said, diving back into the car for the last bag of cider, and the flowers Billy had grabbed.  
Footsteps crunched, and Will’s voice piped up behind him.  “I’m so sorry!” he panted.  “I’m so sorry, Eleven told me, and Max, and Mike, and he told Nancy, and I told Jonathan, and Max told Lucas, and nobody’d told Dustin, and I thought that was mean—”
“It was,” Dustin’s voice confirmed, as Steve crawled half under his seats looking for an escaped can of whipped cream.  “It was an asshole move, Steve Harrington—”
Steve resurfaced with the groceries, and Billy cleared his throat, saying, hoarsely, “How many goddamn people did I just—” 
“Like a hundred,” Dustin said, and Will punched him in the shoulder.  Dustin snickered, smacking back at him.  “—I mean, all the Wheelers are in there, Hopper brought his deputies, there’s the science guys from the lab, Mrs. Byers’ coworkers from Radio Shack—The Mayor—the President—”
Billy narrowed his eyes at Dustin’s grin, and reached over slowly to brace one hand on his shoulder and shove him sideways.  Dustin staggered, but his grin didn’t falter.
“What the hell,” Billy hissed at Will, who turned to look at the house.
“Not everybody saw?” he said hopefully.
Dustin staggered, cackling.  “Oh, and we videotaped it, too.  I’m gonna play it on the school intercom.  With commentary.  Like a football game—”
Billy stooped to scoop up some snow, and tossed it at Dustin’s face.  About half of it went in Dustin’s open mouth, and Steve raised his eyebrows at the gauntlet of carrying bags of groceries through the sudden battlefield, where Will was packing together a snowball, glaring at Dustin, and Billy was shivering, but cackling into the cuffs of his borrowed sweatshirt.  Dustin smacked Will in the face with a snowball before Will got his properly shaped, and Will yowled in fury, chasing him around the yard.  
El trotted back out, eyes narrowed, and then crouched to form her own snowball, and Mike ran after her, waving a hat and scarf.  Luckily, Joyce Byers and Jonathan met Steve at the door, and relieved him of his bags of whipped cream, flowers, and sparkling cider.  Behind them, Nancy waved her arms at the bags, looking weirded out, and Steve shrugged back at her, rolling his eyes skyward.  She shook her head, laughing.
As Steve turned back to the melee, Lucas wandered out the door past him, adjusting his scarf under his coat and yanking a fluffy hat down over his ears.
Billy’s head jerked up.  He’d been helping Will layer more snow along the top of an existing snow fort, and Steve was distracted for a second thinking about all the hiding places and fortifications Will Byers built, and who he pulled in there every time.  Probably his mom, Steve thought.  Joyce Byers seemed like she threw a mean snowball.  He liked the image of the two of them pelting Jonathan, while Nancy mounted an attack on their flanks.
Billy’s eyes narrowed as he took a deep breath, muttered something to Will, and stuck his hands in the pockets of Steve’s sweatshirt again.  He made for Lucas.  
Lucas looked up, swallowed, and backed away, and Steve nearly stumbled catching up to them.  He ran up to hear Billy stage-whispering “Need to talk to you.  The sheriff’s watching from the kitchen, you’re fine, can—can I just—around the corner of the house?”
He’d chosen his moment well—Will had run out and tripped Dustin, shoveling snow into his face with both arms, while Mike tried to pull him off, and El tried to pull Mike out of the fray, and Max hit everyone with snowballs indiscriminately.  Nobody was watching Lucas and Billy, except Steve.
Lucas glanced over Billy’s shoulder at Steve, who froze, then flexed his biceps, and gave a salute.  Lucas covered a snort with his mitten, and turned his deep frown back on Billy, who was waiting, hunched and scowling at the ground.  “Fine,” Lucas said, and crunched around to the side of the house.
Steve tried to crunch through the snow exactly when they did, the sound of their footsteps—and Dustin cackling as he and El dropped an enormous snowball on Mike’s head—covering the loud crunches of Steve tiptoeing onto the Byer’s porch.  He sank onto the porch swing, listening.  
“Listen, I fucked up, I’m sorry—” Billy started, and Lucas snorted.  Steve winced, and started to stand, but Billy wasn’t knocked out of stride.  “—I shouldn’t—I was—sorry.”
“What, you want me to forgive you?” Lucas asked, sounding pissed.  “You’re such an—”
“No!  No, I don’t care, but uh—I mean.  It’s—ha.  It’s not gonna happen, right?  But you’re—you’re gonna be—around.  You’re one of Steve’s—”
“I’ve got parents, actually,” Lucas informed him.
“You’re Max’s friend, and I’ll—I’m gonna be—around,” Billy pushed on, and Steve half wanted to lean around the corner of the house and cheer for him.  “I just wanted to say you’re, uh, safe.  I know you don’t—”
“Bullshit,” Lucas hissed at him.
“No, you—you are, dammit—sorry,” Billy interrupted.  “Steve would beat me to death with a nailbat if I took another swing at you.  Hopper would help him hide the body.  Look, you don’t have to trust me, just believe I don’t want to die.”
Lucas barked a laugh.
“I can—I’ll stay away from Erica if you want,” Billy told him, “—and, uh, cat girl, Tomoko?  Tomiko?”
“It’s Tomika,” Lucas muttered.
“I’ll tell them I can’t help.  If you want, I’ll even tell them why, and they won’t want my help, but.  You don’t have to be...watching for me.”  There was what felt like a long pause, as Steve tried to crane his neck around the edge of the deck without the swing creaking.  Snow crunched as one of them adjusted his footing.
“...okay,” Lucas said, finally.  “I guess.”
“You want me to stay the hell away from them?  I wanted to know before I went in there,” Billy asked, keeping his voice low.
Lucas didn’t answer again for long minutes, with only the sounds of the snowball fight, and their feet crunching in the snow.  “You know what, you can run all the errands for those morons you want,” he said finally.  “But if you—if you do anything—”
“No, I know,” Billy laughed.  His voice cracked.  “I’m sorry I was such a shitheel.  I’m trying to be...less shitty.”
That dropped into silence, and Steve clenched his hands on the edge of the swing, shivering, and resisting leaning around to see what was going on.
“Won’t be hard,” Lucas muttered.  “Max is scared of you.  She’s—she’s not scared of much.  And you scare her—”
“I know.  Working on a truce with her too,” Billy told him.  
“That what this is?  A truce?”
“I agree to be less shitty, and you agree to wait and see whether I am?  I think that’s a truce,” Billy said, and Lucas laughed, coughing.  
“Might have to help that cat a few more times before I believe you,” he said, but he sounded less hostile.  
“I already told Steve I’d help with his child adoption franchise,” Billy said, and Steve’s mouth fell open in offense.  His eyes narrowed, but Billy was talking again.  “If you want anything, lemme know.  I can start trying to make it up to you.  And Max.  Or—or just tell me to fuck off.”
There was another long pause, and Steve wrung his hands like a soap opera star, but his face heated with pride for Billy, who didn’t start yelling or anything, just waited.
“...truce, then,” Lucas said, finally.  “I guess.”
“Truce,” Billy repeated, and Steve wondered whether they were shaking hands.  He stood carefully so the swing wouldn’t bang against the porch rail, and trotted out into the snow, crossing his arms, as Billy and Lucas came back around the house.  
Their appearance caught Max’s eye, and her head jerked up, wide-eyed as she looked Lucas up and down.  She dropped the snowball she was making, clenching her hands into fists, but Lucas sighed and gave her a thumbs-up, and Billy glanced at him, and then slowly echoed it.  
She stared, then cocked her head, mouth quirking, and took a shaky breath.  When she walked up to Lucas, and Billy walked by them towards Steve, Steve heard her hiss “About time,” at Billy, who glared over at her.  “Thank you,” she mouthed, looking indignant, but Billy stared back before nodding.  
“Good job,” Steve whispered, wondering whether he could just kiss Billy, now, since he’d done it already, in full view of basically everyone they knew.  Billy snorted, ducking his head.  “Y’know,” Steve whispered, dodging another ‘snowball’ from Dustin, who was having a frustrating time getting them to stick together in his mittens, and kept throwing showers of snow that only went about six feet.  “Y’know you don’t—have to do anything—”  Steve bent to scoop up a handful of snow and smack Dustin upside the head with a throw straight out of his days in Little League.
“—I don’t need to apologize to that kid?” Billy raised his eyebrows.
“Uh, I mean, yeah, you needed to do that,” Steve grimaced.  “Uh, that—that was good.  I thought—I thought you, uh, he might piss you off, so I was kinda...listening.”
Billy shrugged.  “Kinda dumb of him to let me get him alone, really.  He knew you were there?”
“Yeah, he saw me,” Steve shrugged, making a face at his current snowball, before surveying the battlefield, and smacking it between Max’s shoulderblades.  “Uh, no, I mean.  I don’t know who all...saw the, um, the—” he stopped, feeling his face heat as he remembered the feeling of Billy’s cold hands against his neck and lower back, the stomach clench of so many eyes, and the heady spin and drop in Billy’s arms, half kiss, half roller coaster.  
“I’m such a moron,” Billy muttered.  “Why the hell aren’t they out here yelling at us?  I thought Will’d get them to the damn window.  Did it even work?”
“We can just talk to Mrs. Byers,” Steve ended on a yelp, imagining Hopper grabbing them by their hoods and shaking them, and telling them to get the hell out.  He was pretty sure Eleven had told the man something, but Billy’s tension had brought up thoughts of his calls to the Party’s houses going unanswered, and no more little nosy shits hanging around his car asking for rides.  Will’s mom telling him not to talk to the Byers’ family.  Nancy having to choose between her new boyfriend, and her new friend.  “Shit,” he mumbled.  “What if she’s pissed?”
Billy took a step towards him, then stopped.  “That didn’t—you didn’t think of that?!” he hissed.  “Jesus christ on a cracker, Harrington.”
Steve blinked at him, imagining the blue-sashed blond dude of sunday school crosslegged on a Saltine.  “What?”
“’s a good thing you’ve got a loyal advisor,” Billy whispered, shaking his head.
After a few minutes, Mrs. Byers wandered out, shivering, and yelled “Who wants waffles?!” and El shoved the whole armload of snow she’d been compacting into Max’s arms.  Max twisted her whole body to sling it around at Billy, who put his hands up into claws and roared at her, covered in snow, resulting in the hitherto-never-before-seen sight of Max Hargrove collapsing in giggles.  Lucas and Dustin stared at her as her knees bent, and she slowly collapsed forward to cackle into her arms, crouched in the snow up to her elbows.  
Mrs. Byers was still holding the flowers, frowning at them like she wasn’t sure how they’d ended up in her arms, but she waved at the table, set with Bert and Ernie paper plates and a can of whipped cream by each.  
“There...certainly will be enough whipped cream for everyone,” she said gamely, and Steve wondered which he’d pick, if a genie asked him—Mrs. Byers for his own mother, or Billy’s.  “Get in here,” she rolled her eyes, grinning.  “You’re all crazy, it’s freezing out here!”
“I know, Mom!” Will yelled, but lowered his voice to whisper to Billy and Steve as they sat down.  “Do you think she saw you?  Kissing?”
“Well, I’m not doing it again,” Billy whispered back, and Steve caught Hopper’s frown—he saw us, he thought, swallowing hard, and then Nancy grinned at him across the table.  
She was sitting with Jonathan at the card table, pushed close to extend the seating, and raised a glass of cider to Steve.  He nodded, his stomach clenching, and exchanged another smile with Mrs. Byers.  She can’t have seen, he told himself, as Will hovered around their chairs, telling Billy about losing all but his green marker for two days and drawing everybody in his class as an alien.  
“Right,” Billy narrowed his eyes at him.  “I haveta talk to you later, Ringbearer.”
Will beamed at him, grabbing his arm.  “The waffles aren’t done yet.  I can show you my room.”
The whole gathering watched little Will Byers drag Billy Hargrove off, chattering away.  
“Predators first cull the weak and the small,” said Dustin, and Nancy threw her paper plate at him, and missed.  
Jonathan tripped over the edge of the rug jumping out of his seat to run after them while Nancy’s plate was still rolling around the table on one edge.  Everybody else was still quiet, watching Billy and Will disappear, and Jonathan’s protective charge, so Steve groaned, extricated himself from all the chairs shoved together—smacking the back of Dustin’s head, for good measure—and ran after them.    
 Jonathan had his hand on Will’s doorknob when Steve grabbed it.  
“It’s okay,” he whispered.  “They get along.”
Jonathan stared at him, shaking his head, and Steve squeezed the other boy’s wrist tighter, shaking his head, as they listened to Will saying “And this one I drew you as Boromir.”
“...great,” Billy laughed, a little tense, then, warming Steve’s heart, he summoned up some enthusiasm and added, “—no, I mean, it’s great, really, what’s that, can I even see in that helmet?”, and touched off a lecture on 14th century armor from Will that nearly put Steve to sleep right there in the hallway.  Billy was actually asking questions, so it kept going, and Jonathan listened with his jaw set, then finally glared at Steve and folded his arms, waiting.  
“Okay, okay, short William,” Billy finally said, when Will paused for breath.  “We have to get our stories straight.”
Jonathan grabbed for the door again, eyes wide, and Steve grabbed his arms, wondering how many conversations he was going to end up eavesdropping on in one day.
“We do?” Will asked.  “Why?  Help me put these markers away before I lose them again—about what?”
“Yeah, okay,” something creaked, “—I, uh, I told Steve you threatened me, when—uh, I mean, like Dustin said he’d put sugar in the gas tank of my Camaro if I fucked it up with Steve, and your mom had some stuff to say—”
Will was giggling.  “What did my mom say?!”
“Too scary to repeat,” Billy shuddered audibly, and Will giggled harder.  “And she thought we were just friends, she’s gonna tie my balls to an anchor—”
Jonathan had stopped trying to open the door, in favor of just staring at Steve’s face in the dim light of the hallway.  Steve was trying to cover his laughter, his eyes stinging.
“Anyway, I got—Steve was—anyway.  I was telling him about it, and I said you did the same thing, so we have to—if he asks you, we should say the same thing—”
“Ohhhh,” Will said.  “I have to tie, um, I don’t think I want to, uh, tie your—”
“No!” Billy yelped, laughing.  “No, something else!”
“What should I threaten you with?” Will asked thoughtfully.  “I can’t just tell my mom, it should be different—”
Steve let go of Jonathan’s wrists to lean back against the wall, his shoulders shaking with snickers.
“You don’t actually have to threaten me—” Billy said softly, and it sounded like bedsprings squeaked.
“No, I should!” came Will’s voice.  “I should!”
“I guess if you want to,” Billy groaned.  “I mean, who doesn’t.”
“I should threaten you,” Will announced again.  “And Steve, right?  I’ll threaten Steve too.  Because you’re my friend.  I have to threaten Steve for you!”
“Okay, lil’ buddy,” Billy laughed, sounding fond.
Jonathan was cocking his head like a confused dog, squinting at Steve in the dim light of the hallway, and Steve just shook his head, trying to muffle his snickering.
“Oh!” Will muttered, and the floor stopped creaking as he held still.  “I should threaten Nancy, and uh, and Max, and Lucas—”
From the sound, Billy burst out laughing as hard as Steve was.  “You—you got a lot to do there, Midget William.”
“Maybe the same threat would work for everyone,” Will said plaintively.  “It’d be simpler.”
“Any thoughts?” Billy asked, through giggles.
“I could sneak in and peroxide your hair,” Will offered.  He sounded doubtful.  “I’d have to get my mom to buy peroxide.”
Steve slid down the wall, letting his head lean back against it and clapping both hands over his mouth.
Jonathan sighed and sat down across from him.  “Wait,” he mouthed, his whisper nearly silent.  “—you and Billy Hargrove?!”
Steve shrugged, still muffling giggles, and unable to care what Jonathan Byers thought about who he was dating.  Maybe Jonathan would get some sexy photos of Billy this time through the window, Steve thought, and snickered harder.
Jonathan stared at the wallpaper across the narrow hall, then shook his head.
“You bleach my hair and we’ll have a problem, Smalliam Byers,” Billy said, snorting.  “Besides, I’d wake up.  Steve would wake up.”
“Well, if you screw that up that bad, he won’t be there,” Will pointed out, giggling, “—what did you call me?!”
“Jesus, you’re brutal,” Billy muttered, his laughter sounding pained.  “There you go, there’s my punishment, waking up alone—”
“I’ll get embarrassing stories from Max, and tell him,” Will decided.  “I bet she knows some good ones—I’ll tell Steve all your dumb baby stories—”
Billy cackled harder, and Jonathan stood up, dusting himself off.  “Waffles are gonna be ready, and El will yell,” he whispered, glaring down at Steve, who blinked teary eyes up at him.
Steve nodded, wiping his eyes.  His cheeks hurt from smiling.
 When he rejoined the table, Dustin dropped into Billy’s seat next to him.  “Will’s mom didn’t notice,” he whispered.  “The hell was that, anyway?  Didn’t you see us all?”
Steve tried to think of a way to explain without explaining...Will Byers’ secret queer identity, he thought, trying not to snicker.  His internal voice took the opportunity to sound like Batman.  It must stay secret, or his family, and the world, could be in danger.  “Uh,” he started.  “, ah,” he tried again, crossing his arms, and wishing Billy would come back.  “A-animal instinct.  Love?  He’s horny,” he mumbled.  
“Those were options, Steve,” Dustin hissed, eyes narrowed.  “You don’t know which it is?  Anyway, Hopper might have seen you—”
When El shrieked “WAFFLES!” from the kitchen door, Billy wandered out, with Will trailing behind him telling all about ghost stories he could bring over for another sleepover.  Billy ruffled his hair, sidling around the crowded front room to kick the chair Dustin was sitting in.
“I wanna sit next to Billy,” Will told Mike, who’d sat next to Dustin while Billy was in the bedroom talking to Will.
“I sure don’t,” Mike made a face, relinquishing the seat with a shudder, and stepping around the table only to stagger as El threw both arms around his neck.  He laughed as she swung him around in a spin, chanting ‘waffles, waffles, waffles,’ and Hopper finally scooped her up, and plopped her in the chair closest to the kitchen, before helping Joyce bring out plates with a soft smile on his face.  
Billy frowned around, then stood again—the whole table paused to watch—before snorting a laugh and walking into the kitchen.  “Why don’t you go sit down?” he smiled charmingly at Joyce Byers.  “I can keep my nose to the forge in here, you’re juggling enough out there.”
She squinted at him, then looked over at Will, whose face looked torn between disappointment and excitement.  “Thank you!” she said, finally.  “But as soon as I’m done, I’ll let you have a break!”
Billy nodded, bending to stare into the waffle-iron at eye level.  Preparing to meet his foe, Steve thought, and then Joyce dropped into the seat between he and Will, handing them both oven-warm plates of waffles.  
“You sure seem to like him,” she said to Will, grabbing at one of the gajillion bottles of whipped cream El had placed around the table.  
“Um,” Will’s chair thumped as he swung his legs.  He bit his lip.  “Uh, he’s, um, he’s Steve’s friend.”
Steve widened his eyes at Will, hoping he’d realize he was acting like they’d started a crime ring on their sleepover weekend.
“He’s over a lot,” Steve said, digging into his waffle and smiling over with the casual smile guaranteed to make moms invite him to stay for dinner.  “They bonded over Lord of the Rings.”
“And music,” Will breathed, bouncing in his chair.  “He has rock music about the Lord of the Rings, Mom!”  
“And they’re both named William,” Steve rolled his eyes as Will nodded wildly.  
“We’re both named William, Mom!”
Will was talking into almost complete silence, as Hopper, Dustin, Mike, Lucas, Erica, Max, Eleven, Nancy, and Jonathan all considered Billy, who was burning a waffle.  He grabbed the smoky thing and threw it in the sink, tensed, and looked over at their silently watching faces.  “Sorry, ma’am,” he laughed.  “Not used to this waffle maker.”
“We made a whole fort in the front room and slept there,” Will continued stubbornly, cutting his waffle so the knife scraped loudly on his plate.  “Didn’t think it was dumb.  I didn’t have to say I can’t—sleep, sometimes.”
Oh, Steve thought, blinking.  That’s why he wanted us down there.
Billy’d started doing the dishes, which was probably loud enough to drown them out, and also why he’d gotten distracted enough to start subtly shuffle-dancing to the music in his head.  Hopper’s frown at him intensified, then turned on Steve.  
Steve tried to dodge his gaze, and looked the other way to find Nancy and Jonathan Byers’ eyes trying to burn a hole in his head.  He grabbed the whipped cream and began slowly coating his entire waffle in perfect rows.  
“...I’m glad you had a good time,” Joyce said, finally, exchanging glances with Will’s little goblin horde of friends.
“He helped Tomika and me get her cat out of a tree,” said Erica, and Mike choked.  Dustin slapped his back.  
“Tomika’s cat?!”  Mike spluttered.  “That’s not a cat, it’s—it’s a beast.  Slashing damage.  Roll a save against Fear.”
“Only for cowards,” Erica huffed.
“I don’t know what she thinks could hurt that cat.  It’s gonna die one day trying to fight a Mack truck,” Lucas sighed, and Erica punched him in the shoulder.
“Billy said he’d help us if we needed it, Lucas,” she hissed.
“Should have just left it in the tree,” Max filled her hand with whipped cream and licked it, and El stared, then stared at the whipped cream bottle.  Max caught El’s stare, and waved the bottle of whipped cream, watching Eleven’s head follow it.  Max grinned, and leaned close to fill El’s hands with whipped cream.  “I told Billy to run, if he saw them coming again.  He looked like he’d been mauled,” Max muttered, carefully putting a twirl around the top of El’s double handful of whipped cream. 
“Good,” Mike snorted, glancing at Lucas, who grimaced faintly.  
“Where the hell was I?!” Dustin glared at Steve.  “Your—uh, Billy meets a wolverine vigilante, and nobody calls me?!”
“No idea,” Steve sighed, remembering Lucas’ panic over his little sister alone with the boy who’d started punching him for no reason.  It was easier to focus on Billy now.  
Steve reminded himself about Tommy, and much easier it’d been, just pretending everything was okay, and going along with whatever dumb shit idea Tommy suggested.  It helped him resist wandering into the kitchen and just pushing Billy against the cupboards for a warm kiss that tasted like strawberries and apple cider.  
He beat me unconscious because I got in his way, Steve told himself, chewing the suddenly tasteless waffle.  There’s good inside him, Luke Skywalker, but there’s other stuff too.  He sighed, wishing he could—time travel, or something, back to before Billy stomped in and beat the shit out of him and terrified the kids—and maybe, he thought idly, before he spray-painted shit about Nancy all over town.  
“I fixed him up,” El told them, breaking Steve’s train of thought.  She beamed at Max, between surveying her hands full of whipped cream with the wide eyes of one given a priceless treasure.  “Nancy’s first aid book said you could use bread to bandage wounds, and I wanted to try it, but nobody had a sandwich.”
“Stick to gauze first,” Hopper laughed, pinching between his eyebrows.  “He rescued a cat out of a tree?” 
“Should have taken some photos,” Jonathan muttered to Nancy.  “Evidence.”
“I can testify for the court,” Max shot over, her eyebrows raised.
Steve was half torn between resigned annoyance that evidence of Billy’s few good actions was questioned, and longing for pictures of Billy wrangling tiny, hissing Marcenia Lyle Alberga out of the tree and stuffing her in his sweatshirt pocket for the climb down.  “Definitely happened,” he shrugged.  “That’s why he’s got band-aids on his fingers.”
“I did those too,” El told Hopper, for some reason.  “I know what to do.”  He waved her off, shaking his head and grinning.  
 At around this point, Billy brought everyone a refill on the waffles, and the kids opened every single bottle of sparkling cider, and Dustin smacked his lips, half-closing his eyes and saying, “1981.  It was a good year.”  
“To Hawkin’s resident Jedi,” Mike said, toasting Eleven, who narrowed her eyes and clinked her glass against his as Max toasted Lucas as Fastest Skateboard Rookie and he burst out laughing, grimacing and rubbing his elbows.  Max elbowed him companiably, and blushed.
“Very fruity on the palate,” Dustin declared, smirking.  Will giggled, and Mrs. Byers made a show of swirling her plastic cup.  
“Hold it on the roof of your mouth for a moment,” she said, in a bad French accent, “—then you will feel the flavor,” and Will cackled harder, covering his mouth so he didn’t spit cider.
When Billy sauntered out with more waffles, Will dubbed him “Most Honorable Cat Wrangler”, amist cheers, and Mrs. Byers stood back up to give him his seat next to Steve.  She walked back in the kitchen to exclaim “Oh, you didn’t have to wash everything.”
“I housetrained him!” yelled Max, and Dustin dubbed her the Great High Housetrainer.  Will flopped half into Billy’s lap, proclaiming him the Favored Lasagna Maker to the King in a flood of giggles.  
Nancy, then Jonathan, got up to offer help to Joyce clear the table, and Hopper began collecting plates, a spare fork behind his ear to stab every free-range strawberry segment scattered across the tablecloth and stick it in his mouth.
Steve, now officially the King Of Ceramic Monsters and Lord Nailbat, got up to pee after five cups of cider.  
He’d finished fixing his hair, and was just unzipping his pants, when he heard a thump and creak what sounded like inches away, and realized it was through the wall.  He frowned at it, extracting his dick from his briefs, to hear a horrible wet sound, like a garbage disposal full of slugs, and then, clearly, and inches away, Nancy’s voice saying “Um, mmm—uh, maybe less tongue?”
Steve clapped his hand over his mouth, hearing himself squeak.  He stared at the wall.
“You said you wanted it sloppy,” Jonathan replied, and Steve stared from the toilet, to the wall, taking a step away.  The floor creaked, and the squeaking of Jonathan’s ancient rusty bedsprings stopped.  
“Something creaked,” Jonathan whispered.  “Wait, wait, wha—what if that was Will—”
“They’re all busy cleaning up,” Nancy whispered back, and Steve held very still, wondering whether he could tiptoe outside, and pee on a tree, or whether he’d look up to see another lineup of children—probably holding up point cards, like Olympic judges were assessing his dick.  Yes, wait, he thought desperately.  Just let me take a piss and leave.
The noise started again, sucking and slurping.  Steve yanked his zipper back up, pressing his hand so hard over his mouth to muffle his laughter that he started seeing stars from lack of oxygen, and started to fear he’d pee down his own leg.  He inched to the door, and poked his head out to see a bunch of neon knit triangles—El’s sweater, he realized, right outside the door.  
“Aren’t you glad to be getting along better with him?” she asked.
“I don’t know,” Max’s choked-up voice replied, and Steve pulled the door nearly closed again as she continued.  “I don’t—he’s such a prick, El!  He’s—he’s so goddamned mean, he’s always—now he’s just what, just nice now, and I’m supposed to trust him?”
Steve leaned against the sink, scrabbling at his newly-fixed hair.  Behind him, through the bathroom wall, the awful saliva-demon noise changed, and Nancy yelped.  “Why is that cold—” she hissed, and he wheezed into the back of his hand, shaking with suppressed giggles.  He wondered why Max and El couldn’t hear the horror going on through the wall—maybe Jonathan had blankets nailed to his door, or maybe they were just too caught up in talking about Billy.
“You don’ don’t have to be friends with him,” El offered, sounding uncertain, and Max laughed, sounding a little unhinged.  
“I know!  I know!  He’s—he’s a waste of space, but he—we were—”
Steve felt bad, leaning closer, but it helped drown out what sounded like a dog licking itself on the other side of the wall.  He plugged the ear facing what must be Jonathan’s bedroom.
“Was he...nice sometimes?” El asked, and Max stomped, growling.  
“I guess?” she hissed back.  “Yeah?  Sometimes he’d—give me skating advice, or—or he’d be mad, and Billy’d push me to the side like a shithead and—and draw the—draw—he’d get hurt.”  El was quiet, and Max’s voice got shakier.  “I didn’t—I don’t know what to do when Billy gets hurt.”
“I’ll save you,” El said, her voice low, and Steve couldn’t help smiling as he pictured her seeing the Batsignal, and grabbing her mask.  
“I don’t need saving,” Max said hoarsely, with a snort.  “My mom needs saving.  Billy needs—he could—I think he’s—”
“What?” El asked, sounding as confused as Steve was.
“I think he’s—pretending to be nice, for Steve,” Max whispered.  “He always—he’s good for a while, you know, he’s good in...stores, he’s nice if people are watching.  But then as soon as we’re alone—”
Even the sound of a loud bedspring creak, two squawks, a thud, and an explosion of giggles through the wall didn’t distract Steve from considering Max’s point.  
“But he’s been nice to Will,” Max went on, the floor creaked as she stomped in a circle, but Nancy and Jonathan were laughing too hard to hear.  “I just—how come he can keep it together for Will, y’know?  He never built me any goddamn pillow forts, this is to show off for Steve.”
“Maybe...maybe he wasn’t trying before,” El offered, and Max made kind of an awful noise, deep in her throat.  
“Yeah,” she whispered.  “I—I don’t think he was.  He—y’know, he took me once, out to a skate park.  He knew the skaters, it wasn’t just—he ignored me the whole time—but mom was upset because of something, and he’d been nasty to us all day, and Billy—he grabbed me, and he hauled me off to the skate park.  It was—I thought he—”
“I will take you to the skate park,” El told her, and Max laughed, sniffling.  “When you are sad.  Billy can come if he’s nice to you.  If you want him there.  I will take you to the skate park.”
Max’s sniffling sounded wetter.  “I-I’ll teach you to do flips.  I—we could—get you a board—Billy’s old one—”
“I could ask for one,” El said.  “Do you want another waffle?”
“I never want to eat waffles again,” Max laughed, making gulping noises.  “I’m so sick of waffles, El.”
“...I—we could—I—” El stumbled under this new load of information, and Max giggled harder.  
“I’m not hungry, El.  Let’s—let’s go back.  Let me blow my nose.”  
At this, she pushed the door to the bathroom open, clonking it into Steve’s knee, and he scrambled back, holding his finger over his mouth and pointing to the wall, through which came clearly the sound of Nancy and Jonathan reading a love poem, in unison.
“I’m so sorry,” Steve whispered, as Max laughed so hard she had to lean against the bathroom counter.  
“Oh my god,” she whispered back.  “How long have you been stuck in here?!”
“Blow your nose,” he held out a handful of toilet paper.  “It’ll sound just like their kissing.”
“Were you listening to them?” El asked under her breath, frowning as Nancy and Jonathan started kissing again.  
“I didn’t want to,” he hissed back.  “I was trying to pee—”
“Hurry up,” Nancy’s voice came through the wall, and Jonathan said “It’s a really small room, okay—”, and Max and Steve’s eyes met in horror.
“Heeeeellllp,” Max wheezed, snickering.  She grabbed El’s arm in one hand, and Steve’s in the other, and drug them out of the bathroom and down the hall, back into the kitchen/dining part of the trailer.  “Oh my god, what was that—”
 “Harrington,” Billy said, seated at the dinner table with his face a little too blank, as his little sister drug Steve into the front room.  “Where’ve you been,” he hissed, as Steve dropped into the seat next to him, registering the general silence.  The sounds of giggling and screaming came from out front, in the snow, and Billy had been alone in the Byers’ front room with Hopper and Joyce.  
“So you’re staying at Steve’s house,” Joyce was saying.  She and Hopper had matching frowns, and folded arms.
Max looked from the two of them to her brother, and rubbed her face.  She groaned.  “Who wants to snowball fight,” she asked joylessly.  “Billy, last one outside is...a soggy waffle.”
“Thank you,” he hissed, laughing unevenly, the cider cup in his hand twitching towards her in a weak toast.  He stood, glancing at the door, but froze at Mrs. Byers’ voice.  
“Wait,” she said, and Billy dropped back into the chair with a shaky sigh.  “Steve’s parents are okay with that?” she continued, underailable.  
“They’re fine,” Steve told her, resisting the urge to squirm like a toddler who has to potty.  “Can we—”
“But you’re the—” she frowned at Hopper, then Billy again.  “You are the one who showed up and started the fight?  Broke my dishes?”
Billy nodded, glancing at Hopper.  His shoulderblades hit the back of his chair, and he twitched.  “Yes ma’am.”
“Why?!” Mrs. Byers flailed her arms, and Billy stared past her.
“It was unacceptable,” he said.  Steve slid his hand over and squeezed Billy’s knee, and he jerked, shooting a startled frown back at Steve.  “There was no good reason, ma’am.  I apologize, and it will never happen again.” 
Hopper crossed his arms, backing all the way away to the far wall and turning to frown out the window, and Billy’s gaze flicked after him, then back to Joyce, who was squinting at him, her arms hovering in midair.  Billy’s shoulders relaxed, a little.
“What?” Joyce asked, frowning from Steve’s face to Hopper’s back.
Max wandered over and lingered by the door with El, both of them looking torn.
“I can make it up to you,” Billy told the wall behind Joyce.  “I can replace the plate.  I can—” he cut off, gasping a shuddery breath as Hopper turned to face them.
“You got a couple more boys on call if you have any chores need doing,” Hopper said to Mrs. Byers, and Steve willed her to say that was fine.  Billy tensed again every time Hopper talked, and Steve wanted to reach over and squeeze his hand even more than he wanted to use a goddamn toilet.  
“Sorry we made a mess,” he said quickly, trying to extract Billy, instead of thinking about his bladder.  “We, um, there was a lot happening—”
Joyce Byers wasn’t stupid, and her eyes were widening as she watched Billy twitch every time Hopper moved.  
“You’re...staying with Steve,” she said again, looking over at Hopper, who nodded.  
“It’s fine,” Steve told her, swallowing.  “He and Will, um, they—they get on, they have—stuff to talk about,” he said, clumsily trying not to mention what he was coming to think of as the gay thing, but Joyce Byers seemed to get something else out of his rambling, because she sat down across from them.
“Will doesn’t have a lot of people he wants to talk to,” she said, reaching toward Billy’s hands on the table, then yanking her hands back and folding them together.  “If—if he’s found somebody that he has—things—in common—”
“Lonnie is a piece of work, but you got Will out of there,” Hopper said, and Steve blinked, wondering who the hell that was.  “Your kids got lucky.”
“Oh, oh no,” Joyce said, for whatever reason, and Steve couldn’t take it anymore.  
He stood up, squeezing Billy’s shoulder.  “We haveta go now,” he said, unable to resist the call of his bladder, or return to the Byers’ bathroom.  
“You boys are welcome anytime,” Joyce said, leaning to catch Billy’s eye.  
He frowned at her, but nodded.  “Just tell me what you want me to do,” he told her, and she leaned forward across the table, grabbing his hands.  
“Honey,” she said, staring Billy down, “—you make my kid way too happy for me to care about a plate.  Okay?”  Her hands looked tiny and white against Billy’s big tanned ones.  “You too, hon,” she said louder, frowning over at Max, who frowned warily.  Joyce smiled a little sadly.  “Have your mom give me a call, sweetie.”
Billy had kind of...frozen, and Steve kneed him in the side, hoping his engine would engage.  
“Come on, trespasser, we’re going.”
“Come again next time,” Mrs. Byers said, squeezing Billy’s hands, and smiling up at Steve.  
Steve, as ever when faced with somebody’s mom, fought down the urge to suggest they just stay.  Probably Billy was a better cook than Jonathan.  Steve was a better babysitter.  She probably doesn’t mean forever, he told himself, smiling.  She didn’t mean ‘I’ll keep you’.  “Billy can make lasagna,” he said instead, and Billy glared up, his cheeks reddening.  He hadn’t pulled his hands back from Mrs. Byers’, and Steve watched her pat them, like she had Will’s, after she took off his little snow-covered gloves.  
Billy watched her hands with the weird blank look he got sometimes, and Steve leaned against his side, trying to remind him he was there.
“Everyone likes lasagna,” Mrs. Byers told Billy, and his eyes flicked back to her face.  “Would it be evil of me to trade on my broken plate to get some lasagna?”
“No,” Max answered, from the door.  “Billy, make Will’s mom some lasagna.  You broke her plate.”
“He doesn’t have to!” Mrs. Byers protested, and Billy snorted a laugh, watching her hands again, and shooting a wary glance at Hopper.
“No, I—I can do that.  Uh, Will likes it.  Lasagna.”
“There!” Mrs. Byers squeezed Billy’s hands again, and looked over at Hopper.  “Aren’t I lucky he broke a plate?  Now I get lasagna.”  
Hopper shook his head, then met Steve’s eyes.  He jerked his head at the door, smiling, and Steve sighed with relief.  
“What’s lasagna,” El whispered to Max, sounding suspicious.
“Seriously,” Steve said, “—we need to go, uh, can we—I need to—”
“Oh, hey,” said Max.  “Can you drop me close to my house?  Like, a ways away—”
“We didn’t talk about—” El frowned at Hopper.
“I think we talked enough,” he said, nodding at Billy, who was letting Steve haul him to his feet, but hadn’t tried to pull away from Joyce Byers.
“Too many people here anyway,” said Max, rubbing her eyes, and El squeezed her hand.  
“I will go with Max,” she told Hopper, who opened his mouth, narrowed his eyes at Max’s red-splotched face, and nodded.  
“See you at home, kid,” he waved, then turned his glower on Steve and Billy.  “Treat your cargo with care,” he said, and Joyce laughed.
Once they got outside, Steve took a deep breath.  “Holy fucking christ I have to pee.”
Billy and Max both burst into snickers, white-faced and shiny-eyed, and Lucas hailed Max.  El shoved Max towards Lucas, then turned to stop Billy with a hand on his chest.  
“What do you need for skateboarding,” she asked, without it sounding like a question.  “For Max.”
“Uh,” he blinked at her.
“When Max was sad once, you took her skateboarding.  She liked it,” El told him, and he lowered his eyes, biting his lips.
“Really have to pee,” Steve hissed at them.  
“It’s snowing,” Billy told El.  “There’s nowhere—”
“So, a roof,” she said, unmoving, and crossed her arms.
“Uh,” Billy frowned, stroking his mustache.  “There’s not much around.  Even if we broke into the gym, it’s just a big empty room—”
“Nancy could break in again,” El said, folding her arms, and Billy blinked at her.
“The princess broke into the gym?” he asked, and Steve remembered he needed to sit his boyfriend down, sometime, and tell him the whole story.  
Sometime his bladder wasn’t about to explode.  “I’m about to make yellow snow,” Steve hissed, and Billy shoved his shoulder.  
“Go in the bushes, your majesty, nobody’s watching!”
“What if Mrs. Byers sees my dick,” Steve asked, crossing his arms, but Billy pushed him again, so he stumbled off into the darkening twilight.  He crouched in a bush, hoping he didn’t get poison ivy, and watched Billy and El talk seriously, both nodding, and looking over at Max.
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Crash Project
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[before I space and forget, credit to gif creator @ezekstiels​]
Square: College!AU ( @supernatural-jackles​ tell me a story bingo)
Pairing: Dean x Reader
Word Count: 2,098
Summary: The Reader’s priorities are a little messed up, when Dean and the Reader are paired for a project, Dean picks up on changes in the readers appearance.
Warnings: scary situations, passing out, working to the point of exhaustion, mentions of autism and Asperger’s. Fluff.
Bingo Masterlist
Y/N = Your Name, Y/L/N = Your Last Name
“And, Winchester you’ll be paired with Y/L/N.” Their instructor says. “Though you guys have until the end of the semester to complete this project, don’t waste time. I would recommend starting now, with a plan on gathering the information, then a plan on writing it out, editing it, and so on.”
The instructor allowed time for the groups to get acquainted.
“Hi,” Dean says sitting next to Y/N.
“Hi.” she waves.
“So, I guess we’re working together on this.”
“Yeah, and I’m totally useless.”
“No you’re not.” Dean says, to encourage her.
“No I am, I work full time during the day and my schedule changes every month. I’m not good at juggling.” 
“It’s okay, we’ll work something out, I mean, the project is about anything we want it to be but as long it's in our classes guidelines. Psychology and what not.”
“Yeah, and I have no idea what to have our project be on.”
“Neither do I, well, we got the whole semester to not only come up with it, and to write it out and present it.”
“I’m sure we won’t fail this.”
“Nah, we got this sweetheart.”
 Three months till the project is due...
She worked her 13th day in the row, her overtime got approved for working not only 6am to 2pm, but she’s now able to cover some night shifts from 4 to 8pm.
She had communicated with Dean of her predicament, but they have a few months to get a good portion of their research down.
She had just left a residents room after delivering a dinner tray to one of her favorite residents when she saw Dean walking into the Nursing home she worked at.
“Dean, what’s wrong?” she asked.
“I need your portion of the research on Autism and Asperger’s so I can get it written out.”
“Dean, you’re doing more work in this than I am, besides I don’t have much printed out.”
“It’s okay, I can tell you’re busy.” He says, rubbing the back of his neck out of nervousness.
“How about if I email it to you?” she asked.
“That’ll work, and yeah, Y/N, it’s okay. You’re working overtime, I can at least tell you don’t have time to do this right now. I got no problem doing most of the work.”
“Then it’s not teamwork, and that bugs me if I’m not doing my part.”
He chuckles. “It’s okay, really sweetie, just get back to work and I’ll talk to you later.” he says leaving with a wave.
You’re not doing enough, guess we got to stay up and get our work done and then we’ll email it to him once we’re done. She thought.
 Two months until the project is due…
She had called her instructor letting them know she couldn’t get off work. She was in the middle of doing the dishes right as the breakfast meal period was finishing up, everyone was taking their breaks and getting ready for the lunch rush.
She was going on two months of little to no sleep, working doubles almost every other week, staying up late doing her homework for the classes research project. She was thankful it was her only class she had to take that semester.
As she put another round of dishes through the dishwasher her watch vibrated with a ding noise, indicating a text message. Looking at her watch she saw the text was from Dean.
“Thanks for your portion of the paper sweetheart, we’re almost done with it. If we keep this up we’ll get done early.”
Yeah, I can finally rest. She thought.
NO! You can’t rest, you got rent to pay, two maxed out credit cards to pay for, a car payment, 30k student loan debt to pay for. You don’t have time for rest.
She mentally groaned at her anxiety when it came to her financial standpoint.
She paused doing dishes to text Dean.
“Praying for that. Lol. See you in class.”
And she went back to doing the dishes.
 One month till the project is due…
She sat in her class listening to yet another lecture, but her head pounded to her pulse. Her eyes hurt, she couldn’t keep looking and reading the PowerPoint.
She didn’t pay attention to a certain classmate watching her with a concerned gaze.
“Alright, that’s it from me, you guys are dismissed. You should be finishing up your project.”
The class remained silent as they packed up to leave.
Dean packed up his bag and headed over to Y/N’s desk.
“Hey, are you okay?” he asked, concerned.
She couldn’t bring herself to talk. With her head hurting her, along with her eyes, ears, and neck, she couldn’t bring herself to endure more pain with the pain of talking.
Could shake my head yes, go home, shower and go into work for tonight. Or could shake my head no, what could he do or say to make this feel any better. She thought.
She shook her head. And wrote in her journal.
“Head hurts, eyes, ears, neck, everything hurts. I’m exhausted. I gotta work tonight. I got a full day of work tomorrow…” she wrote.
Dean interrupted her writing.
“You’ve been working nothing but double shifts for the entire semester?”
She nods. And continues writing.
“Some nights, I don’t get any sleep. And it’s after I do the research, the writing for my portion so you don’t have to do everything.”
“Sweetheart,” he groaned. Not in annoyance, but almost saddened.
She got up, not wanting to waste time she did have to go to work after all. But she swayed as she stood up. Dean kept a hand nearby; in case she were to fall over.
She gave him a tired smile before she walked out of the classroom.
 That night, just as the dinner rush was picking up, her body couldn’t keep up.
Just as she got done delivering a full cart of dinner trays, she was hurrying back to deliver another round. She thought she grabbed onto the cart, but her world turned black before she could even grab the cart.
She woke up to her boss, who also stayed late working a double shift, lightly shaking her and delivering gentle, light taps to her face.
“Y/N, Y/N, come on, wake up.”
“Look at her color, she looks so pale, boss.” Brought up by one of her coworkers.
“Yeah, I see that.”
“What happened?” she asked when she finally came to.
“You passed out,” he answered. “You look sick, how are you feeling?”
“Awful.” she answered truthfully.
“Hey, Drew, I called her friend in her contacts he’s coming to pick her up.” one of her coworkers working the call center said coming out of the office.
“Okay.” he says to her.
“But, wait, what about my car?” Y/N asked.
“It can stay here until you’re well enough to drive it home,” he says.
“You sure?” she asked.
“You worry too much, it is fine, just when your friend gets here, go home and rest. I’ll give you the rest of this week off for you to rest up and get better.” he tells her.
“But I have rent to pay, bills to pay.” she argued.
“Y/N, you’ve been working overtime for roughly four, five months. I’ve been noticing you getting sicker and sicker. You’re pale, you have dark circles under your eyes. You don’t look well.”
She stayed silent as her boss basically told her she worked herself nearly to death.
She heard the kitchen’s door open and close with a slam.
“Hi, Karen?” She heard Dean.
“Hi, she’s right over there.”
She saw Dean slowly enter in view.
“I’ll take her to the hospital from here.” Dean says.
“Sounds good, I’ll help you get her to the car.”
“Okay,” Dean says, as her boss and Dean took her hands to help her up.
She slowly walked, still not feeling steady on her feet even with help but they managed to get her to Dean’s car.
“Nice car.” Y/N and her boss happen to say in unity.
“Thanks.” Dean smiles proudly.
She got settled in the front seat passenger, her coworker following behind with her backpack, Skillet Band water mug and her phone and keys in hand. Dean opened his backseat door for him to toss her stuff in the back.
“Thanks Dillon.” She says weakly.
“No probably sweetie, get better soon.”
“I’ll work on it.” she says.
 It was a quiet drive to her apartment from the hospital.
“I didn’t know you had Asperger’s Syndrome sweetheart.”
“Yeah, I’m basically Autistic.”
“Well there’s nothing wrong with it, but you basically over worked yourself. You had a fever of 102, you are susceptible to migraines because of the amount of stress you just put yourself under. Plus, it runs in the family. Not only that you lost so much weight, you weren’t eating right.”
“I’m sorry, I just had so much going on.”
“Like what your mom told you, don’t do that. Don’t be afraid to ask for help.”
“I’ll try.”
“I’ll take it. Lets get you inside and to bed.” He says sweetly.
He helped her up to her apartment, she gave him the key so he could unlock it for her.
“This is a nice apartment.”
“Two bedroom, two bath, it’s not bad, just expensive.”
“How expensive?”
“It’s like…eight hundred a month.”
He looked shocked.
“No wonder you overworked yourself sweetheart.” He says. “Are you interested in looking for a roommate?” he asked.
“My dad suggested it, though they said I may not like it.”
“I know, I have a small apartment full of us guys. Cas, Benny, Chuck and then there’s me. I’m there rent free, but I’m looking for an apartment.”
“But you’d be roommates with a girl, periods, mood swings, it won’t be fun.”
“Eh,” he shrugged. “Periods are a way of life for you, mood swings are just extra baggage that come with it.”
“So, wait…you…”
“I want to be roommates with you. You’re not like most girls, sure you’re quiet but once you’ve warmed up to me you’re awesome to talk to.”
She smiled, ducking her head, her face heating up from the comment.
“Well, I do have room for you, my room was big enough to have all my stuff from home in there, so I have an empty room I just use as storage. I can clean it out soon to get you settled.”
“No, you don’t do anything. Doctors orders, you do nothing. Just rest, relax and recharge. I’ll take care of it.” he says.
She nods.
“Let’s get you settled for bed; I’ll take the couch.”
She nods once again.
 She laid in bed, wide awake. Wondering what life would be like having a roommate.
Does he actually like me. Is that what he meant by I’m awesome to talk to? She thought.
She tossed and turned as she tried to not think too much into it. Her mind was about to talk herself out of it.
She heard her door open.
“Sweetheart, I can hear you tossing and turning, you okay?”
“Can’t sleep.”
Her door closed, and she felt her bed dip down.
“Wanna talk about it?” he asked sweetly.
“Do you like me? Is that what you mean by what you said earlier?”
“Well do you like me?”
“I do, but I have some stupid fears. My mind likes to talk me out of a lot of stuff. I could use a roommate to help me out, so I don’t over work myself again.”
“I get it, remember what our project was on, we’ll go slow with this friendship.”
“Okay, but I just can’t…”
“Do you have a weighted blanket?”
“If you want to lift 35 pounds, I do.”
“Damn girl, that’s heavy. Bet it feels nice.”
“It does.” She says. “Is it over stepping if I ask you to cuddle with me?” she asked.
“I never cuddled before.” She quickly adds.
“It’s not sweetheart, the thing about friends, we’re always their for each other. You got my back, I got yours.” He says.
She felt him leave the bed to go to the other side to the unoccupied side of the bed, lifting the covers and quickly getting in and covering themselves up.
She turned over to face him. He wrapped his arm around her waist, letting her head rest on his shoulder.
She melted into his hold, his warmth. She could get used to this.
She felt him press a gentle kiss atop her head as she slowly fell asleep.
“Good night sweetheart.”
She snuggled more into him.
A/N: How was it? Did you enjoy? Feedback is always appreciated! Preesh! :3
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Copying and reposting someone else’s content is plagiarism and illegal. This work is property of supernaturallyobsessedchic. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. These works contain material protected under International and Federal Copyright Laws and Treaties. Any unauthorized reprint or use of this material is prohibited. No part of these works may be reproduced in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system without express written permission from the author / publisher. An electronic reference link to the original posted work may be provided for purposes of promotion or assistance of publication by the readers discretion, if proper credits are given to the author in the re-post. 3/12/2021
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blankdblank · 2 months ago
Hobbit Soulmate Pt 41
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The Jens and Ben had to head to their preplanned after parties alongside Orlando’s girlfriend, with tight hugs to you, both again stole a glance at the same ring on your finger they had admired earlier in the night without your having to show it off. Having shared the observation that a unique design like that made it all the more special and suited for your fated relationship. Liv from the group snuck to your side in the ride to your new place in the limo the four hobbits had arrived in with Viggo, David and Sean B.
Smiling widely she took your hand saying, “I am so excited. I know the house will just be perfect.”
“Will be one day hopefully.”
Orlando asked, “3 Million is pretty steep for you, right?”
“That’s just the average for the block, but it’s 1.5, got a good deal for it.” Your dad said.
Andy said, “Peter will be sad for missing out.”
“No problem, baby business is more important house isn’t moving. He can drop by later when it’s done.”
“Oh that’s nice,” Sean A said leaning forward to see the five story marvel the limo stopped at turning more heads with the group all taking turns spilling out onto the sidewalk.
Once out of the car you let go of your skirt to reach into your clutch bringing out the keys you held in the hand lowering to lift your skirt again leading the walk to the darkened front stoop. Excitedly Liv kept up with you smiling widely at the adventure luring smiles out from the others again who had noticed the extra bars added to the front entrance you unlocked to pass through the shadow finding the lock in the dark by thwacking your knuckle into the knob by mistake. Explaining the bars your dad said, “There are lawyers and some politicians who live on this block, they voted for the extra gates on the doors together. It’s a good neighborhood they just wanted extra security so people can’t pound on their doors I guess.”
Andy chucked saying, “That’s alright, heard a few lads back home who thought of gates too to keep their doorbell off limits.”
Billy, “Could also help with pets to keep them from running away down the steps.”
Your dad said, “There’s a buzzer for guests when it’s locked, which you could see-,” he said reaching over your head to find the light switch panel turning on both lighting up the stoop along with the main floor. Eyes shot from inside the mudroom to the again dark stoop at the bulb dying that had you giggle for its timing on its dying breath. “Perfect timing. Lazy bulb,”
Dominic said pointing at the buzzer panel lined in a silver frame, “Ooh, nice buzzer, shiny,” that the others could see in the light from the mudroom.
You smiled unlocking the next door, saying to yourself in easing them open, “I can imagine myself fighting these having to pee,” that earned chuckles from the others while this switch you managed to find turning the three lighting up the main open areas and what would be your study/library. Behind them the group closed the front doors and pooled into the front entrance blocking off the view of the cameras gathering on the sidewalk. “Ok, first off, mind the floors, Dad took out a few walls so there are a few uneven grooves where those were,”
Sean B asked eyeing the dent in the floor, “And that crater?”
Glancing from him to the dent and back again you said pointing up bringing the dimly lit chain to their focus as to why this area was the least lit, “Old tenant liked to hang things on the chandelier, it fell, but the chain and mount have been repaired just have to think of what to get to replace it.”
That had Liv saying, “You liked the chandelier in my study, it came as a set the other is just sitting up in my attic. It’s yours, housewarming gift.”
“Oh, thank you, gift,” you turned for the stairs lifting the box there, “Wedding present, before you can explore.”
Smiles spread through the group watching her open it and let out an excited squeal, “You bought me a typewriter!” Moving closer to wrap you in a tight hug, “Thank you, I love it,” her husband chuckled accepting it to settle it down back on the stairs adoring his wife’s new addition to her collection. “You are getting my chandelier, when are you back to Canada?”
“Tomorrow,” you said in her move back.
Your dad said, “I’ll be staying here though to mind the repairs.”
That had her smile at him, “Good, I will bring it for you at the apartment then.” Then she asked you, “What’s first?”
You pointed to the study, “This one over here is a sort of study or library, bit perfect for it once we get the shelves in.”
Viggo came in smiling wider imagining the long ended room stretching behind the stairs saying, “Perfect for a hiding spot for books.”
Out you went allowing everyone to have their own turn to envision it while you led the way across the floor past the stairs to the living room where more than a few took focus on the fireplace mantle shaped wonderfully. “This is gonna have carpet, in a sort of swoop shape right to the edge of the closet there. Up to this pretty wall with this detailed milky glass pane with the vines that go with the mantle carvings. Ooh, before the kitchen here’s my favorite guest bath,” you said crossing the floor pointing out a groove for them before they each took a turn in the black and cherry themed bathroom under the stairs then turned to head with you to the kitchen. “And there’s this other bath over here around the corner to the pantry,” each looking over the cabinets on the ground and counters without a top broken and split showing how someone had beaten into them.
Your dad said, “Used to have two rooms here we tore out, just shrank the place down absurdly. And over here we’re gonna add an island and move this counter and that whole wall outside the pantry and bathroom is going to have built in cabinets and cubbies for the dishes and spare appliances and whatnot. And maybe a built in for the dining area, bench possibly.”
“Oh and you should have seen it when the sun was out, this sunroom, just glows, new sunroof and needs some tile but leads to the patio. Helps to distract from the travesty that will be reborn into a kitchen.”
Sean A, “It’s not the worst I’ve seen, don’t be nervous about it.”
Elijah, “Where does this go?”
“To the basement,” you said with a smile, “I love these stairs. Just out of a castle.” You said and he smiled leading the way down the hall to the stairs lit by a switch you found and amusedly the others headed down as Liv kept close to your side wondering what the basement held as her mind was already reeling with love for all she’d seen so far.
Her smile doubled as you said tapping the chute door on the wall, “Laundry chute,” you heard the group excitedly exploring into the laundry room already after he turned on the light switch he was warned of to light the way by your dad.
Dominic was heard saying, “It’s got a kitchen!” already leading the swarm out through the floor relaxing you a bit you didn’t have to play guide down here.
“Oh I love these stairs,” she said and took notice of the chutes and gasped excitedly at the laundry room, “So much space, love this.” Out she went and smoothed her hand on the door to the apartment, “Love these doors.”
“Keeps nice and separate from the living space, and the garden entrance too.” Ignoring the patches on the walls tours of the kitchen and spare bath in silver and blue that led into the spare bedroom. Past the hall the bedroom was next to be explored with the open study lined with pillars. “This could be a sort of study area, like not a room but a room.”
Sean B, “Great for when you have kids to work here and let them run around.”
Billy, “Plus good to keep the little ‘uns from climbing into the fireplace at not being out of sight.”
Your dad said, “We’ve ordered glass doors for the fireplaces already to replace the old ones that were broken to help with that too.”
Orlando smiled saying, “Can we go up now? Gotta see more.”
You smiled and led the group back up hearing them turn off lights on the way with just flashes of cameras from one cameraman who’d climbed onto his car to see simple glances over the closed shutters covering the lower half of the windows. Back to the staircase on the main floor you led the way up to your dad’s floor to Ian’s saying, “Those shutters are a lovely touch. Adds to the privacy without barricading yourself in.”
“They might add to the castle touches a bit. Least for my take on them. This one’s dad’s floor.”
He flipped the switch lighting the main open area starting the tour in the wave shaped long bath/closet mixture feeding into a spare bedroom with the group eager to follow you again. “This would be the guest bed and bath.” Out of that crossing the floor was another fireplace containing open area, “Another living room, where my big tv is going.”
Another mini kitchen past the dividing wall similar to the one downstairs with a small room after for an office or hobby room, back past the staircase with exposed shelves was the impressive master bed and bath he had chosen.
Again those stairs called and up the group went to explore the three open rooms, two with sliding doors the other without any. Split by shared baths without a mini kitchen clearly could be the guest floor shaped in elegant curves around a rounded nook in the center of the back wall divided by a milky glass paned set of sliding doors.
“Oh there’s so much space,” Viggo said smiling at you, “guess this is for the babies?”
“I mean, if I had to pick I’d think that one would be a nursery, just has the best view and the one that way would be too close to the road and there’s a fire and police station.”
Liv, “Oh I get that, same as my place, gonna be interesting when babies come.”
Billy asked, “Let me guess, animals for the design?”
Awkwardly your grin crept out answering, “Peter Pan, actually, my mom had sketches for mine. Found this cool pirate ship chandelier for it. I haven’t said anything about this to Rich yet.”
Sean A shook his head, “Won’t hear it from us. I know my wife had it all planned long before we ever got engaged. And it is good to pick the room when you pick the home.”
Andy, “And you have a yard?”
“Small one, but we can always take the courtyard back to stretch it out some more the tiles are coming up anyways we’d need to replace them. But when these imaginary babies get older we’d have time at the ranch back in Texas too and the place in England has a decent back garden if we end up there when they get to school age.”
All the parents agreed that was a big thing for you as a cross continental couple who would be traveling often making your dad say, “Either way I’d be bunking in as stay home grandpa, so work travel won’t disturb that,”
You added, “And I was thinking for this room across here on this long wall for these built in bunk beds. Like stairs in between them all wood, surrounded by shelves and cubbies.”
Ian, “Twin beds?”
Your dad, “We mocked up a group of Queen sized beds, so not fully a kids room could also be for adult guests. Gonna have some added to my spare bedroom on my floor too in case family wants to drop in with all the munchkins.”
Ian smiled trying to picture them, “I can’t wait to see them.”
Elijah said, “I’m thinking by this layout your room is huge, like whole top floor.”
That had you giggle and lead the way up the final set of steps, “Not the whole floor, bigger than my bedroom now,”
You flipped on the light and the open floor plan had eyes traveling throughout from the mini kitchen they passed to get to what would be the study across from the open living room. The floor was worse up here with scuffs and dents between chipped planks and the damage to the bathroom had Liv gasp and cover her mouth in the horror scene and Dominic ask, “Did the old guy just like to party?”
Your dad answered, “Well he was a lawyer and he decided not to pay his rent and then decided to tear the wiring and pipes out of the wall and just broke everything he could on the way out through his eviction. Part of how the price got so low, all that had to be repaired and Jaqi picked new tiles for the counters, floors, new wood and carpet to go with the new cabinets and shelves that will be swapped after the flooring is done. They’re coming to tear it up in a few weeks, and by the time it’s all out the new flooring will be in and the wood will be piled in the garage for the woodwork. But we at least got these spacious tubs, showers and sinks replaced at least so far for the bathrooms. Not a full remodel after what I’ve manage to handle for Jaqi.”
Liv, “You have a garage?”
Your dad said, “On the other side of the yard, it’s got parts and supplies all in it now that will be cleared out when the repairs are done.”
“Which it doesn’t really need much since dad’s been sneaking here before I got to look at it and handled the plumbing and wiring, including the black brass fixtures I love. So not a full tear down job. And I’m glad he managed to find these huge tubs.”
Sean B said, “Nightmare,” along with David who added, “You lucked out, good move dad, because I have been there. Wanted to commit arson.”
Elijah, “What about the roof? My first three apartments had terrible roofs I had mold down my walls within a month each time, went house hunting and the realtor turned and I was up in the attic before they knew it, flashlight in hand scoping it out.”
Your dad answered, “New roof, brand new had to change out a beam and did that all at once to fix the dip and prevent the water damage before it started raining again. Another winter and the snow would have taken it out. But it’s been built up to a safe foundation for my little girl to start out on.”
Liv, “It is a great start, and I really do love the shutters you have that block out the bottom half. Helps to let the stars and light in. Have you thought on curtains yet?”
“Not really, I know I’d want to not have those sheer curtains, I love it for yours but they creep me out middle of the night,” earning a few chuckles from the group, “Especially under ac vents. Rich’s has these nice green ones he picked fabric for his mom to make for him she might help pick some fabric for me to make them. And that all goes in with the paint and wallpaper discussion.”
Orlando, “Well you’ve picked a great place to make your own. You can throw one hell of a party when it’s done.”
Dominic, “And I know the perfect painting for your wall downstairs.”
David, “And you should let Peter know and by the end of the week when the shelves are in you’ll have tons of stuff to fill them from Weta.” That had you giggle again.
Viggo, “I’m making you something, I’ll know it when I feel it.”
Billy asked, “Where’s your music room going to be?”
“Don’t know yet.”
Your dad said, “Either way the floors are all soundproof so wherever it goes will be perfect.”
David, “Soundproof would have been dangerous for me and my siblings. Our mother lived by crashes and distant muffled screams.”
You and your dad said, “We’ll hear it,”
David, “For now, we need to feed you, Hugh said he’d get us a table to celebrate Joe’s win.”
Your dad smiled saying, “You guys won things too.”
Sean B waved his hand, “We’re old news, have to celebrate your first win. Come on, let’s feed you.”
Lights were shut off all the way down and you locked up while Liv clung gladly to her box she settled on her lap unable to wait for the time she got home to find the right place in her home when she got there. While it needed work the project home had every one of them searching for what they could find to add to the shelving to come along with coating those walls desperately needing some paint.
Once at the place Hugh smiled giving you a hug, “Sorry, had a few interviews, but I am seeing your place next time I am back in town. When are you coming back from work?”
“Couple months, floors and shelving should be done by then leaving furniture and painting debacles.”
Hugh, “Just the basics, how big? Bed, bath, footage?” His eyes narrowing a bit to make it click in his imaginary home he was drafting for your personality.
“8 bed, 7 bath, 7500 square foot.”
“Wow,” he said, “Don’t hear that a lot out here, more than one story, right?”
“Yes, five including the basement.”
“Lot of stairs,” he replied in a chuckle.
“My apartment is five flights up, so it’s the same, but at least now everything around it is mine so if I’m tired I can sleep anywhere.”
He chuckled and Andy said, “Even has this cool gate at the front to keep people from the doorbell. Apparently there’s a lot of politicians and lawyers who voted for them.”
Hugh, “Voted?”
“Brownstones are historical styles and there are councils you have to consult on anything structural on the front, they picked the more classical wrought iron gate appearance matching the gates around the front walkways leading to the basement apartments.” Your dad answered gaining a nod while you all took your seats.
“Probably only close them when I’m not in New York, there’s a mud room behind that until you’re inside and that could only be hard to race my bladder on days I’ve been busy.”
Hugh said, “I can agree with that, especially after nights out and a long ride home, had many times one of my first apartments had to knock on the neighbor’s door to pop in on the way up.” He flashed a grin to the waitress that brought in a round of menus and he asked, “I saw on the news something about you and Keanu Reeves?”
“He lives next door in the apartments there, got home when our Landlord was waiting to show me the new place and he was being tailed I guess and they caught the introduction moment.”
Elijah, “Those shutters will certainly help with that in the future.”
Hugh glanced his way then to you as you said, “It has big front windows. And there are sectioned shutters inside that cover the lower half on one set and a second for the top so if I want light then I can still leave the top open and someone would have to stand on a car like a camera guy did tonight seeing us all heading in.”
“I love that,” he said, “Might have to borrow that idea.”
“I mean it’s not like I streak or go running around in my underwear but walking around and the front room is feet from the street it can get kinda awkward to catch someone’s eye.” Making the others chuckle, “I’d like to have curtains for night time but the place just glows when the top shutters are open, which we might have just caught it at the right time and it’s all shadows after that hour passes but for an hour it is perfect.”
Hugh, “I feel like that’s a realtor tactic, finding that window to trap you. Been browsing options for price ranges on what we might be able to rent and they all have a certain glow to each picture I’ve seen. But I’m glad you love it and I will be available to help often cuz I got chosen for The Boy From Oz on Broadway through the winter.”
“Oh that’s amazing,”
“Thank you,” he said with a massive grin, “I am excited about it, my last couple films did help.”
“They love a big name, no secret about that, I was a last minute tolerance out of desperation losing lead and understudy who only my teacher had been gunning for me they so badly wanted me to fail so they could find someone bigger who could draw in crowds. I will be getting a seat for the show when it’s out.”
“I can’t wait for your next show, wonder how you can top Chicago.” Next projects picked up and over the meal animatedly carrying on through to split rides home.
Face washed and changed to sweats again cuddled up to your dad’s side you slept trying to ignore the fact that Richard still hadn’t returned your message from the night before or the call you’d made to him earlier that morning. True you’d have to wake up early to catch your plane so you might miss his return call while you were in the air or jumping right back to work. And it did bother you to leave your dad here alone but he was dedicated to ensuring the new home would be taken care of while you were away, glaring the workers into line protecting his baby girl in your absence. Keeping everything in line on the most unpleasant tasks to handle that while he could to spare you that hassle until the day you had to take over when he had been drug kicking and screaming to the afterlife hopefully when you yourself were old and grey.
“So, I sort of bought a house,” came out of your lips and mouths dropped from your friends hearing about it and from the mention of spare bedrooms you could swore Lee was already wide eyed with pupils dilating to commence the begging.
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Fully drained your pasta sat waiting for the sauce you were stirring to finish when your phone rang in a call from Richard luring a curious grin across your face. “Hey Richy Rich, busy day?”
After a calming exhale Richard steadied himself and said, “I am so terribly sorry I’ve been a bit distracted, but I swear I’ve been thinking about you the whole time.”
“It’s ok,”
“I caught a glimpse of the award show, Joe have fun?”
“He did, so glad he won something for his acting to add to the wall.”
“That’s great, how was your break from work?”
“Good, um, Dad took me to the Brownstone, it’s really nice under the scuffs.”
“That’s great, so you want it then?”
“Yes, I um, I put 250k into it for a down payment.”
“Fantastic, so it’s not too much then?”
“1.5 mil, which is staggering, but I could always put funds from the box office pay into it whatever that will be, and Keanu Reeves apparently is our neighbor when it’s done. I helped dad pick the new flooring and sketched up new cabinets and shelves, old guy broke all that.”
“Can’t wait to see it, I know I’ll love it.” You could hear his anxious pause before he said, “While we’re on news, um, as far as real estate goes, I bought us a house too.”
“Another one?”
“Well, got a call from a buddy from my real estate days with a tip. I have a buyer for the old one, Chris has been helping me pack, why I was distracted. It really is perfect I know you’ll love it, I love having the three of us for Holidays but my place was kind of small. And this is going to sort of come out upside down, but Chris finished his degrees and now he’s been hired with a good place and he put funds down on a house of his own closer to Mum and Dad, but his roof caved in.”
“Oh, he okay?”
“Oh he wasn’t there, it was another deluge over a week and the beams gave out, some error on the build code, but he’s having that replaced. And I moved near Oxford to be by him in the first place so knowing he was close to finishing I have been looking at places close by too and with the funds coming in I was able to pick something more spacious. So I settled on the big place Mum has always wanted a tour of it and the owner I bought it from was be glad to be rid of it for people trying to buy it to tear it down for more flats. Moved in yesterday and while his place is being fixed up him and his girl are moving in until the new roof is built.”
“They’re moving in together now?”
“Yes, she’s already been talking to her doctor about some hormone shots for a baby. He’s picking a ring and they’re going to pick a date for a court ceremony to make everything official.”
“So what happens if she gets pregnant and they’re still at your place.”
“Our place, and it shouldn’t take long he was quoted a month to mend the damage, they know it’s our place and she’s not too fond of the size of it, shares your cleaning urges when she gets stressed. Their place is the same size as my old place. I really do know you’d love it, blue shingles and grey slate tiles outside, covered section on the drive right in front of the door. Two stories, tons of room, and,” he said pausing to wet his lips, “It’s got the perfect room for a nursery upstairs overlooking the back garden.”
That had your grin creep out, “I suppose we’ll have to trade pictures when you get here then.”
“Yes we will,” he hummed happily then asked, “There’s room for little ones in the brownstone?”
“8 bed 7 bath, 7500 ft, it’s got a small yard about the size of my apartment but we can always take trips to the ranch in Texas or out to England as they get bigger and need more space.”
“I don’t think I’ve ever heard of an 8 bedroom anything in New  York before.”
“It is out there, as far as what we’re getting, I’ve seen 14 million for penthouses or town houses with no more than 4 beds and two are usually Murphy beds to share as office space. But it is going to be amazing, I do have to warn you I also found a room fit for a nursery.”
“Thank you, for doing that, I know we haven’t settled on a time frame for when babies might be coming but I do like that we have a place for them to have as their own. And eight bedrooms is so much room.”
“Some aren’t as spacious as they sound, and dad took out some walls on the main floor especially which just would have gouged the living space. So now we have room. But I have seen where we could do bunk beds, not like wobbly metal ones but where they are built against the wall with shelves around them for books and such, then there’s space to play. I did pick carpet for the bedrooms and the room I picked for your study.”
“I have a study?” He asked excitedly.
“Yes, it’s on the top floor, great lighting and we’re going to add shelves and a desk if you like that you can pick or armchairs for a sort of deflating zone for you if you need it. It has its own fireplace.”
“Perfection. What about you? No study for you?”
“There’s this little odd room on the main floor to the left as you walk in, runs behind the stairs, I thought it could be like our mini library,”
“Oh that’s fantastic.”
“Yes, not too big to entertain there but it’d be nice to hid in, stash some big armchairs and just cuddle up, maybe have a wardrobe for blankets and pillows.”
“That’d be amazing, and I truly love the carpet idea.”
“Good, I picked a sort of crème color, then we can have runners and rugs for halls. It’s got new ac and heating and fireplaces have all been repaired to be wood burning but winter, it’s gonna get chilly and I did not want door to roof wood floors, especially if we’re gonna have kids playing on it. I don’t really care if it gets stained in their rooms and we could always toss a rug on top of a designated play area anyways, something more colorful, the guys after the show were glad for a tour and I thought they might be iffy on carpet since most people are crazy over wood.”
“I love carpet, crème is a great choice, there’s something therapeutic about vacuuming, and wood floors things can just ghost around when you sweep it.”
“Exactly, oh, and dad talked about getting a puppy.” That had him chuckle, “He misses our old dog Jet. We’ll train it so it won’t destroy anything. Do you have a preference on paints or wallpapers?”
“Not particularly, I love the choices you picked for your apartment, you can choose what you like and I’ll love it.”
“I just know we’ll have to paint everything, there’s huge chunks of replaced drywall, he broke the counters and cabinets in the kitchen,” that had him scoff, “And he tore the damn cabinets off the wall, all of them,”
“Exactly, and he tore out the pipes and wiring, smashed tile flooring and these beautiful milky glass panels that are in these half walls dividing the open living and dining areas.”
“There’s more than one dining area?”
“Yes, mini kitchens for our floor and dad’s and in the basement. Ooh, and we have laundry chutes! The basement steps are sort of dangerous for hamper hauling, you know those spiral staircases they have in old castles, all from this pretty wood, pretty but dangerous for hauling. Oh, and Dad’s going to add barn door gates to the stairs like at the big house at the ranch to add to the prep on munchkins.”
“I love it already. I am all for hurling dirty laundry into a hole in the wall to hide it from guests. And I do love those gates. Have you picked where furniture goes from our places?”
“No, not yet. I sort of want to see it when the floors are done, then when I get back I can help dad start to prime the walls so we won’t see the patches, ooh and Liv is gifting us the twin to her tree branch chandelier for the chain by the door, and also I found a pirate ship one for the nursery.”
“Pirate ship,” he chuckled out, “Sounds lovely, pirate theme then?”
“My mom had some Peter Pan sketches for mine, thought it might be a nice theme.”
“Now that will be phenomenal to build that up. Truly. We could double it here if you like, I absolutely love it.”
Sheepishly you smiled at your food you’d been taking sparing bites of between turns talking at your place on the floor in the living room glad he didn’t think this was weird to have planned this already. It wasn’t hard to find out why tears were threatening to fill your eyes, the tie to your mom you missed even without truly knowing her yourself, knowing that she would have given anything to have been here right now to plan a wedding and nursery with you to raise your babies in. “Thank you.”
“I absolutely understand, my mother is a formidable force in my life, who out of tradition will be insisting on a stuffed turtle in the room, anywhere, but there must be a turtle. And she could find the best curtain material for a Peter Pan theme with blankets galore.”
“My aunt makes these plushy pillows shaped like animals, we could have that in the story corner or something.”
“I love story corner idea, I can see Mum loading up on the classics now.”
“We have ample copies out at the ranch, still have mine, we could have a whole section of shelves for the kids sorted by age. And those time traveling tree house book series and the Junie B Jones series and Madeline and Suess, Giving Tree and that Sidewalk book.”
“And we have to add the Beatrix Potter books too to go with the Hobbit.”
“They will be getting their own illustrated copy for their room, it will be read often, trust me.” That had him chuckle deeply beaming with tears in is eyes planning all this. Wiping a tear away he heard you say, “We haven’t um, we haven’t talked about, for the wedding, last names. Liv was talking about how she did that for hers.”
“I have no qualms taking your last name,” he blurted out parting your lips, “Honestly I don’t they’ll still be part of my family and Chris’ kids can keep the name, your dad took your mum’s name and I would really love to do that for you. No one can say my name right anyways,” that had you giggle and wipe away your own tear.
“Richard Crispin Pearisiyiae?”
“Sounds flawless doesn’t it?” He said with a smile, “People get married all the time in the industry and I can keep my stage name. If they try to give me trouble for my passport I can hyphenate it for the pencil pushing jerks. I am not letting you give up that name, however chauvinist that hints to I love you and I won’t do that to you. It will never be something my family takes personally ever either, I swear that to you I’ve talked to my parents about it when I said I was going to propose.”
“You do realize your name is more vanilla than mine is, it’s a lot of vowels together.”
“I’m prepared, I’ve practiced signing it already,” that had you giggle again, “Primary school all over again full journal with hearts and all signing our names in hearts.”
“This new place of ours, how much work does it need?” You said with a smile trying not to focus on that tear drawing image of his thoughtful promise.
“Surprisingly all it needs is a water heater. It almost seems too good, I’ve been over every inch and had people to check the pipes and everything else. So far all I can find is this obnoxious bird nested on a corner of the back porch cover.”
“Well we can handle that, give them a nice little house,”
“So encourage it, fair plan,” he teased making you giggle again.
“Win them over, kill with kindness.”
“Ah, so end goal the bird is dead, I’m all in.”
Pt 42
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ch0s0 · 2 months ago
Matsukawa, suna, sakusa and kenma reacting to their child saying they like you better 🥺
haikyuu boys when your child says they like you more
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with: timeskip!matsukawa, suna, sakusa, kenma, & atsumu
a/n: this is toooo cute, like seriously omg and your character choice has me screaming... the TASTE, like seriously these men r golden... thank u non’!
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-> ATSUMU practically deflates when he hears this devastating news. he honestly can’t believe that you are their favorite and not him. he considers himself the fun parent, always pretty relaxed with the rules, never opposed to sneaking your kid an extra bowl of icecream after dinner when you aren’t watching. as all of this mulls through his head, you can see all the doubts begining to cloud his thoughts, and when he looks up at you, your heart almost breaks cause he looks so sad. pulling him into your arms, you smooth his hair out, pressing a chaste kiss to his forhead before pulling back “you know they love you just as much as me ‘tsumu, right?” “yeah, but why can’t i be their favorite?” “i don’t know, you’d have to take it up with them. business hours are from 9am-8pm but i hear their pretty busy loving me more so you might not be able to find a time” “not funny” he grumbles, pulling back to pull you into a hug
-> MATSUKAWA hearing your child say they like you better makes his heart drop. he knows they’re only a kid and that they see you more often than him due to work, but still he can’t help but feel a bit of sadness pooling in his gut. later that evening, he walks up to you, head hung down, shoulders slightly hunched over, and just kinda slumps into you “do they really like you more than me?” he mumbles into your shoulder, lifting his head to look you in the eyes “issei, you know they’re just a kid, u’ll probably be their favorite tomorrow” all you get in response to that is a grunt before he trudges off to make a plan on how to win over your kids affection, and he’s not above playing dirty
-> SUNA when he hears your kid announce that you, in fact, are their favorite parent, suna doesn’t have a very visible reaction. you can see the slight droop in his head, his normal attitude slightly more down-beat, but other than that, its as if your kid had just told him they liked oranges more than apples. what you can’t see though is the gears turning in his head, his plan to get your kid to choose him as their favorite. and what is his plan you may ask, pft, bribery. throughout the day he’s all like “pssh, hey kid, you want a new car? i mean, i’d get you a porsche, but you’d get more bang for your buck with a subaru.” and “you want some more candy? yeah i can get you some, you can’t tell y/n though or they’ll be mad” as well as “ok so i know bed times a strict 8:30, but i have some strings i can pull and push it back to 9. what’s my condition, funny you asked, you gotta say i’m your favorite parent. deal? sweet, nice doing business with you” it works 
-> SAKUSA would throw this child off your child off the face of the earth if he could, but that’s bad parenting so he restrains himself. he’s honestly not to effected by it though, knowing that your kid is just a child and that most children have no filter, but he still does have that tiny bit of doubt lingering in him. and as a few hours pass, it only begins to grow, slowly filling his thoughts, making him wonder if he’s been a good enough father and has been present for your child when they needed him. during this moment of doubt, you walk in to see him lying face down on the bed how can he even breath legs hanging over the edge and your just like omg is omi broken? no he’s just having a existential crisis :D. sitting down, you begin to rub his back, feeling him begin to shift as he realizes your there “ydf-nnf, dosh the ehvn lihske meeh?” he mumbles from his spot on the bed, words distorted by the comforter. “what omi?” turning to face you, he says again “y/n, do they even like me?” “what kind of question is that?” “well,” he begins to say, eyes darting everywhere except you “i don’t know they just said that they liked you more andijustdon’tknow” swiping his curls from his face you press a soft kiss to his temple “of course they like you kiyoomi, they just like me more” you say, a smile lighting up your face as you attempt to run away from the pillow hurling towards you
-> KENMA slowly blinks after hearing your child declare they love you more than him. he lets the remark slide, staring blankly back at you before continuing about his day, willing to let go this one time, but when your kid says they love you more than him again, and twice within the same day? he’s just sad now. meandering over to you, he slowly tugs on your shirt before wrapping his arms around you, resting his chin on your shoulder. “they like you more than me” “kenma, you know they don’t really mean it” “yeah i know” he mutters, hands fiddling with the ends of your shirt “do you though” you counter, turning to face him. he just kind of looks at you, a small frown forming, eye brows begining to furrow “do you love me?” he murmurs, daring a quick glance at you “babe, of course i do” “mhm” he responds before pulling you into a tight hug
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a/n: in conclusion, ur kid broke these men
requests open
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see you space cowboy
2K notes · View notes
bkfics · 2 months ago
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‘Thank you.. Sakusa-san.’ You reply while looking on the floor.
‘Hmm, no problem. Also, i’m really sorry for before.. are you okay?’ He asks while scratching the back of his head.
‘Y-You don’t need to apologize for that. It was my fault for getting distracted.’ You say still facing the floor.
‘No. I’m really sorry for that. Actually i want to—‘ He stops what he’s going to say ‘cuz you both make eye contact.
‘.. Nevermind. I gotta go. Also, your kids are beautiful, see you around.’ He says to Kise and you while turning and going on his way.
‘How about no?’ Kise thinks while picking up Kazuhiko.
‘...’ You’re confused. You want to know what he wanted to say.
While Sakusa leaves you and your family, he feels a little bit sad. He really wanted to catch up with you, tell you about those 4 years. He wanted his friend back again, the person he could lean on when times were rough, he wanted to make new memories with you.. but he can’t, now that you you have settled down and have a wonderful family. Before meeting you, he thought that he could find love again, but every time he tried to date someone, he always wants to find you in them. He went to the conclusion that you are the only girl for him, you have something that the others don’t have. Now that he saw you after a long time, regrets is raining on him for breaking up and hurting you.
He’s getting jealous and envious of Kise. His head is filling with questions like ‘What if i was in his shoes? What if i had kids with her rather than him? How would i feel about having the love of my life beside me? Would i be happy?...’
Now that he made those questions in his head, he’s pissed. He entered the locker room with an angry face and he answered the questions in his head, he was screaming those answers. ‘It’s obvious that i’d be happy!!! If I have kids with you, i’d do everything i could just to make them happy! I should’ve been the one beside you, not him! I want you to be the first person i see in the morning and the last at night before i go to sleep.’
‘If I only didn’t do that..’ he whispers
He throws his towel against the wall and yells ‘F*CK!!!’
His captain, Meian, hears him and comes in to check up on him.
‘Sakusa what’s wrong? You okay?’ He asks.
‘No, i’m not okay. I SHOULD’VE BEEN THE ONE BESIDE HER, NOT THAT F*CKING MAN!’ He answers angrily.
‘Who are you talki—‘
‘You know what? Whatever. I’m sorry Meian-san, i’m going first. I’m not in the mood to party anymore, congratulations to everyone for the win today.’ Sakusa tells his captain with an annoyed tone.
Meian-san left him be, because he knows that Sakusa is going through something. He knows that it’s better to leave him alone and give him some space. He left the locker room and let the others still in the court know that Sakusa left early.
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‘Hello, I’m Kisara!’
‘And I’m Kazuhiko.’
‘Hello everyone, my name is Kise Ryota. Nice to meet you all! I’m an NBA player.’
The three present themselves to the ADLERS players.
‘I’m sorry for not telling you about my family. You guys were busy and i didn’t want you to lose your focus or get distracted while you were practicing. You actually never brought it up or asked about my private life, so i apologize for not telling you..’ You tell them with a little bow.
‘It’s okay, Y/N-chan. Thank you for telling us now.’ Heiwajima replies with a smile. Reassuring you that it’s alright.
‘I can’t believe that a goddess like Y/N-chan is already married with kids.’ Adds Hoshiumi while pouting.
You smile and tell the kids to go play, so that they couldn’t hear what you’re about to say, but Kise says it first.
‘Ahm, actually i’m not the real father of the twins.. that bast-‘
You glare at him.
‘*cough* i mean, he left her. So i’ve been acting as a father figure for the kids since they started to call me ‘otōsan’ a long time ago.’
‘Who would be so stupid to leave a girl like you while being pregnant?!’ Kageyama butts in with an annoyed tone.
‘It’s fine Kageyama-kun. I’ve already left it in the past, i’m happy now with the twins. Also, Ryota-kun helped me a lo—‘ before you finish your sentence, you suddenly feel dizzy and your head starts to hurt that you slowly start to lose balance. Fortunately, Kise catches you putting an arm around you and pulls you closer to him, now your face is leaning on his chest. You can hear his heartbeat a little and smell his perfume that it’s not too strong and relaxes you. 
‘Y/N-cchi, are you okay? You shouldn’t overwork your body like this. We’ll get straight to the doctor, alright? So, if you can walk just nod, if you can’t imma pick you up.’ 
You nod so he doesn’t picks you up, but he still supports you just in case.
‘Okāsan?’ Kisara calls you after seeing you almost fall. 
‘Kisa-chan, okāsan feels a little bit weak, but she’s fine, okay? Call your oniichan so we can take okāsan to a magician that will make her strong again.’ Kise tell her without worrying her. 
‘OTŌSAAAAAAAN! I WANT TO SEE A MAGICIAN!’ Kazuhiko screams while running towards you after hearing about the magician. 
‘ME TOO, ME TOO OTŌSAN. I WANT TO SEE!’ Kisara screams too, matching her twin’s energy.
‘Alright, alright. But you need to behave because okāsan is feeling tired, so no loud noises, okay? Grab a piece of my shirt and don’t let go until we arrive at the car, got it?’ 
‘Got it!’ The twins reply in sync. 
‘Sorry guys, but we better let her get check up by the doctor, i know you still have the post-game meeting-‘ Kise gets interrupted by the captain before he finishes his sentence.
‘It’s alright, Kise-san. We’re actually worried so you should hurry before it aggravates. Thank you for your hardwork, Y/N-san.’ The captain tells you and Kise.
‘I really didn’t do much, so thank you for your hard work.’ You say to all the players.
‘Take care of yourself and let’s do our best next time, alright?’ He says wearing a smile.
You all say bye to them and go.
‘Ryota. How are you gonna deal with the mess you did?’ You ask Kise while walking towards the exit.
‘What mess?’ 
‘The mess called Hyped Twins. How-‘ You trip and Kise manages to catch you again, but this time, he hugs you.
‘Don’t worry. I have a solution called Midorima.’ He whispers in your ear.
Midorima, huh? You’re forgetting that he’s still hugging you, because you feel comfortable around him.
Kise feels that you’re getting comfortable so he picks you up and walks to the car with you on his arms and the twins grabbing his shirt.
[Outside the doctor’s office, 01:20 p.m.]  
‘I didn’t agree to this.’ 
Midorima-kun is studying medicine and how to treat patients under the doctor of the neighborhood, also he has a hat on that ‘wizards’ would wear in movies or tv series. Kise put him on a difficult situation, he needs to entertain the twins, while Kise and you are going inside the office.
‘When did you have time to buy that hat?’ You ask Kise as he keeps laughing.
‘Well, it’s today’s lucky item.’ He answers as he’s filming a video with his phone to send it to his group chat, “Miracles”.
Before Midorima takes the twins to the other room, he comes to you and asks ‘Can i borrow one of thoso 3 three hairpins? Tomorrow’s lucky item is a hairpin.’
‘Sure.’ You take off the hairpin and give it to him, ‘here you go, also thanks for your help.’
‘No problem. At all.’ He says with a straight face.
‘L/N F/N.’
‘Y/N-cchi, it’s your turn, let’s go. Ah, Midorima-cchi, why don’t you show them the bunny inside your hat?’
‘I’m gonna make you pay for this Kise.’ Midorima says with his eyes glaring angrily at Kise.
You enter to the dr.’s office to do the check up, he hands you out some papers to fill in the necessary personal information.
‘Ok, L/N-san. It’s nothing serious but your had been hit hard by the ball and you also fell and hit your head on the floor. You had a minor concussion, but thanks to the paramedics, they helped you out. I’ll ask you some questions to make sure there are no brain injuries that could affect you in the future.’
You just nod trying to recall what happened all day..
‘So, what did you do from this morning?’ He asks
‘I was preparing my and my kids breakfast, then went to my friend’s house to drop them. Then i went to the arena to meet the players and also the kids’ fath—‘
Right.. you met Sakusa there and you start to remember all those questions you made when both your eyes met. You almost have a panic attack, but Kise notices your shoulder shaking so he puts his hand on your back to make you feel safe. But.. he calmed your body, not your thoughts.
< Kise and the Dr. keep calling you, but you’re just lost in your thoughts, so he tells him that you’re probably too tired and the hit from the ball added some fatigue so he gave him some medicines for bruise and sleep pills, also, if there’s something wrong, Kise should call him.>
‘..cchi.’ Kise keeps calling you.
‘Let’s go grab something to eat, the kids are hungry, me and probably you too, so you can drink the medicine.’
You go to a family restaurant where the food is delicious and all the kids love eating there, it’s also cheap. After that you go home.
[At home, 3:50 p.m.]
You all arrive at home, also most of the times Kise stays at your place since he rarely comes back to Japan, so he didn’t bother to buy a house or rent an apartment. Kise starts playing with the kids before their afternoon nap, you go to your bedroom and try to take a rest, but you can’t because you keep remembering what happened in the arena.
After 2-3 hours you finally nap. Then you wake up with a headache, you stand up and it’s already night time, around dinner. You go to the kitchen to have a glass of water, you see the kids sitting waiting for their dinner and Kise with his apron cooking.
‘Okāsan, how are you?’ Kisara asks after seeing you before anyone else.
‘I’m okay, honey. But i have a little headache.’
‘Do you need to go to the magician again?’ Asks Kazuhiko while hugging your leg and his eyes are shining.
‘No, baby. I just need to take some medicine.’ You answer him with a smile.
Kise smiles after hearing you all three talking, you go near him to take the medicine on the shelf and when you’re about to drink it, Kise stops you.
‘Hey, before you drink that, eat something first. I made you something light and some soup.’
‘Okay, i’ll try to eat it.’ You say and giggle teasing his cooking.
After dinner, you tell Kise that you should at least do the dishes.
‘Y/N-cchi, just take a rest on the couch. I’ll take the kids to have a bath too, so just relax for the rest of the night, alright?’ He insists.
‘But you just came back today, you haven’t rest.’
‘It’s okay, I have a lot of stamin, so i’m not tired at all, i’ll rest after i’m all done and put the kids to sleep.’ He says while smiling.
‘All right, you win.’ You go to the couch and lay down to rest, you fall asleep while Kise takes the kids to the bathroom and have a bath. They’re pretty tired with all the activities they did all day. After he puts them to sleep in their bedroom, he goes and has a shower, after he’s done he notices that you’re still in the living room.
‘Y/N-cchi, i’m sorry, the kids took a whi-‘ he sees you peacefully sleeping, he caresses your face and smiles, then he continues ‘You must be really tired, thank you for your hard work, manager-san.’
As Kise picks you up to take you to your room, you can’t help but hold him tight in your sleep. After entering your bedroom he lays you down on your bed, as he’s slowly pulling away, you grab his shirt.
‘Don’t leave.. Kiyoomi..’
Hearing his name, Kise freezes on his spot with his eyes widened and his heart shatters. Then he moves a hair strand away from your face, a tear falls on your cheek. After staring at your face for a while, he kisses your forehead and he sits on the floor and leans his back on the side of your bed.
He starts talking to you, even though you’re sleeping.
‘Kiyoomi? Even when you’re sleeping, you still think about him? Do you still have feeling for him? I know he’s your first love and the father of the twins.. i thought you moved on. So why? He wasn’t here during your pregnancy. He wasn’t here when you were on labour and gave birth to those two beautiful kids. He wasn’t here on your sleepless night. He wasn’t here when the kids started talking and walking. He wasn’t here on their first birthday or their first day of school. He wasn’t here to comfort the kids when they were crying or when you cried because it was tough for you. He wasn’t here taking care of you when you were tired. He wasn’t here to see all that and guess who was here besides you.. ME. He was always you first priority, but were you his? he put his career first, right?...’
Then he leans his head on the bed looking at the ceiling and tears start to run down his cheeks.
‘He hasn’t been here for the last 4 years, but now that he showed himself up to you, you still want him? Remember who was there for you? Me. I’m still here and will always be here. Right by your side. Also by the kids’ side. So why? Why can’t you see that I’m right here? Does this mean that whenever I was here to make you three feel loved and protected, to be a father to Kisara and Kazuhiko because the real father is a jerk who cherished his career more than you.. You were still thinking of him? So please..’
Kise’s eyes are now red and puffy, he never cried like that again after the spring tournament on his first year of high school when he lost to Aomine.
‘You know how.. whenever I comeback to Japan and tell you that ‘I’m back home’.. It’s not because Japan is my home country, but for me, my home is.. you three. That’s when i feel the most safe and at peace.’ After saying everything what he was holding inside, he glances at you one more time and mutters ‘I really want you to know that.. I..’ and he falls asleep with his hand holding yours.
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masterpost | II. | IV.
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Midorima and Aomine are from Kuroko no Basket too
They played basketball with Kise in Junior High School
Midorima Shintaro:
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Aomine Daiki: 
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@rrroadkill @samwise-though @lola2001 @velociraptorenthusiast @mjade1321 @farmertoshi @kurosiee @googiembul @hohoshiumi @floralkawa @miwtze @crapimahuman
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49 notes · View notes
hotaru987 · 2 months ago
Sariel 2021 birthday: “In the hands of a devil”
Key Narration, thoughts, speech
Within the Rose country’s beautiful palace, the gentle rays of morning light lit up it’s gloious halls--
It was on this early morning did I find myself awake, and since I had this time I decided to go to the library.
The light sparkled off the grand handing ornimants, casting shadows along the walls. Though it was sunny, the season also had a refreshing cold bite to it.
I was lost, whisked away into the magical fairy tale world of the book I was reading when--
???: “My, what an early riser. Good morning.”
MC: “Eh-!”
My shoulders jumped in fright at the voice that whispered directly into my ear from behind.
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Sariel: “Apologies for giving you a fright.”
MC: “O-oh, it’s you Sarial...”
(He’s like a ninja! I didn’t even hear him coming...)
Sariel stood there in his usual all black outfit, in direct contrast to the glittering and bright backdrop of the sunkissed and peaceful palace.
(Sariel goes around acting like the castle devil, but something I really wonder if he’s really a ‘devil’....
But he probably acts like that since he has to deal with 8 ‘noble beast’ with odd quirs of their own.
Not only that be he’s also the stand in for the King and essentially their guardian.
Sariel: “If I may, what is it that has you up so early?”
MC: “Nothing special. I just woke up early and couldn’t get back to sleep. SO I thought I’d get some studying in since I was up...”
When I answered Sariel’s violet eyes narrowed.
Sariel: “How marvilous. I am astounded at your dedication to your studies.”
Sariel: “Thus I can expect great result from your test tomorrow.”
(heh...uh, yeah...)
Tomorrow was the day of reconing, and by that I mean the day I had to take Sariel’s handmade test.
I didn’t even want to imagine what horrible, soul draining training waiting for me if I failed.
(But I gotta do this so do my rol as Belle! Sorry brain, but hand in there!)
Giving myself a mini internal pep talk, I threw the exact same question he ask me right back at him.
MC: “What about you? Do you have plans this morning?”
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Sariel: “Not at all. This is normal for me.”
(Normal? You mean people get up thie early on the regular? And you’re one of them?)
But now that I think about it I don’t ever remember seeing or even hearing anything about Sariel turning in for the night.
And in the mornings I ALWAYS seemed to run into him. Not once has there been a time when he was still sleeping.
Ever since I’ve been here wheter it’s late at night or early morning, he’s always in the office when I arrive
(Does he even sleep? I mean he HAS to right...?)
A contemplative expression came over the sharply defined features of his face.
Sariel: “But this is quite fortuitious as there is a matter I wish to discuss with you.”
What he wanted to tell me was that it would be rather difficult for him to attend our evening’s lecture.
However, since Yves was also well versed in the material I should go ask him to teach me.
(But I bet Yves is busy with work too...)
MC: “I’m sure that Yves wouldn’t mind helping me, but I think I can understand it myself with a bit of self-study.”
( I don’t want to bother Yves too much.)
Sarie: “If your concern lies with Prince Yves’ workload, I assure you it will be fine. It will be rather light for the next few days.”
Sariel: “Wanting to self-study is praiseworthy, however please listen to Prince Yves for this matter.”
Backed by Sariel’s insistance I nodded. As long as it wouldn’t be too much trouble.
MC: “In that case I’ll go now. He’s another early riser.”
Sariel: “Yes, please do.”
He gave a small smirk.
With that he turned to walk away.
MC: “Um, are you going out, Sariel?”
I asked before I chould think to keep it to myself, but he turned around anyway.
Sariel: “Yes. Let’s say I have some ‘cleaning’ to do.”
Yves: “Ok, let’s leave it at that for now MC. You actually didn’t too terrible.”
MC: “It’s only thanks to you Yves! You’re a life saver!”
As I bowed in gratitude to my improptu instructer, Leon, who was doing his own work in the room, spoke up.
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Leon: “If your test is on the material you covered today you’ll pass with flying colors.”
Yves: “Of course she will. I was the one who taught her afterall.”
Not long later the office was filled with the calming sent of freshly brewed tea.
Yves: “After all that hard work, it’s about time to be craving something sweet. Here, cookies and tea.”
Yves: “I’ll put your share here too, Leon.”
Leon: “You even made me some? Thanks, and sorry for the trouble.”
Thanks to Yves being well prepared our unplanned tea party began.
MC: “This one is so delicious! Is there some sort of special ingredient?”
Yves: “For that one I used a fruit from the Jade Kingdom. I think I outdid myself on this one...”
We continued our lively conversation over the sweet cookies and black tea. It was so comfortable that I found myself relaxing completely.
Maybe that’s why I ended up speaking my mind without thinking.
MC: “---It’s rare for Sariel to suddenly change his schedule on short notice.”
When it came to Sariel he was never NOT busy, but he always made time for our lectures and test.
He’s even told me sometimes that his schedule was pact, but never so much so that it had him cancel on me.
Leon: “Hmm, could be some ‘trouble’ popped up that couldn’t be avoided.”
Leon: “It’s a shame though. Our resident devil is even busy on a day like this.”
MC: “A day like this?”
Leon: “It’s his birthday today.”
MC: “What!?”
Yves: “It’s that time of year already?”
Yves: “You know, we tried to through a small surprise party for him once but, well, it ended in desaster....Sariel was furious and told us--”
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Yves: “’Don’t trouble yourself with an affair like this again. What I would like is peace and quiet.”
Oh man, that’s terrifying. I could imagine it clearly, him saying that with his trademark devilish grin.
MC: “But I still want to try giving him something, especially after everything he’s done for me.”
MC: “I wonder what he likes...”
(If I go to the kitchen now I can probably whip something up before the day is over.)
Leon: “If it’s something that he likes then...Perhaps, ale.”
MC: “Ale, huh...”
(There’s no way I can make something like that. Alright then only one think left to do!)
MC: “Thanks for standing in today and for the snaks, Yves. I won’t let you down tomorrow.”
MC: “You too, Leon. For telling me about Sariel’s birthday.”
Leon: “Oh, you’re heading to town?”
(You guys are so sharp. It’s impossible to hide anything from you.)
MC: “Yeah, to look for the perfect present. If I leave now I can be back by nightfall.”
Leon: “Sorry to leave you to go alone. I would go with, but I still have plans after this.”
Yves: “Hmph, knowing you, you’d just be running around without a clue what to get him. I suppose I have nothing better to do today, so I can go with you.”
MC: “Hehe, I really appriciate it, but it’s just a bit of shopping. I’ll be ok on my own.”
----But I would soon come to regret that decision.
I was startled awake by a loud noise.
(Huh....What’s going on?)
I opened my eyes, but still couldn’t see anything because of the blindfold. What on earth was going on?! How did this even happen?
I was sitting a chair, hands tied behind my back leaving me unable to move.
(Ok, calm down and think. I left the castle by carrage and then...)
My memories were a mess, and I tried to put all the pieces together when--
???: “My, oh my. Resorting to kidnapping citizens. Is there no low you will steep too?”
That voice! I recognized it.
(That’s Sariel...right?)
I was pretty sure that was Sariel, but the voice that responded was deep and unfamiliar.
Man: “Cut the bullshit! The broads always coming and going from the castle. She’s gotta have noble blood or at least someone’s woman!”
Sariel: “---I see.”
His simple response made the air in the room drop to freezing and a cold, terrifying chill ran through my body.
(I don’t even have to see it...But I bet he’s wearing THAT smile...)
Sariel: “I’m relieved at the depths of your ineptitude.”
Sariel: “Why, if the lot of you knew the truth I’m afraid I would’ve been forced to have you silenced.”
Man: “Damn devil! Whaddya think ya can do alone!?”
(What does he mean alone!?)
Going of of the number of voicing jeering and throwing out vulgarities, there was a lot of them! 
But from how calm Sariel’s voice was when he responded, you wouldn’t think he standing there outnumbered.
Sariel: “---Then would you like to try me?”
Suddenly the world around me erupted in sounds of painful groands and bodies being thrown to the round.
---It was a full on brawl!
MC: “...ngn....”
Then there was silence...Followed by slow methodical footsteps coming to a stop behind me.
And then the blindfold was snatched away allowing light to flood back into my eyes, forcing me to blink and squint at the harsh light.
With every blink the world came back into clarity---
Sariel: “I count myself fortunate that you were unable to witness the acts of a devil such as myself. I do beleive it would’ve been too much for you.
I tiled my head back to look at the owner of the voice.
(O-oh, he’s so close...)
When I did all I could see was ‘devil’ smirking down at me.
Sariel: “Imagine my surprise to find you in such a place as this, Belle.”
There was no sign of the men from earlier or any indication of someone attacking again for revenge.
(I only heard the fight, but even from just that Sarial must be really strong..)
I mean, he just finished his “cleaning” and stood here without a single hair out of place, and didn’t seem the bit out of breath.
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Sariel: “Now, little one, do rememebr this. What happened in here stays between just the two of us. If not then....Well, you understand the consequenses, yes?”
I was familiar with these gestures and the way he spun his words, that practically forced me into a promised silence.
MC: “Y-yes, I do...”
My skin pin-prickled as his fingers moved down my throat, like a beast looking to pin it’s prey down by their most vulnurable place.
Sariel: “You seem to have a natural talent for getting mixed up in incidents such as these.”
Sariel: “So much, that even I have become aware.”
Sariel: “Still, you are a pivital point to the prosparity of our country, so do see that you do not act rashly in the future.”
His hand slid further around my neck until his fingers pressed lightly against the pulsing vein of my jugglar.
Sariel: “Please enlighten me as to why you left the castle without permission.”
(Isn;t this supposed to be a resque!? Then why do I feel like a prisoner in an interrogation...)
But with the way things are now I didn’t have any other choice but to come clean.
MC: “It’s because...I heard it was your birthday...”
His sharp amethyst colored eyes, so impossibly close to me, widenedat my admission.
Sariel: “My birthday, you say?”
MC: “That’s right. Leon was the one who told me it was today....”
So I went out by carrage in order to search for a present.
But along the way I was attacked and brought here before I knew it.
A short sardonic chuckle came from Sariel followed by a small sigh.
Sariel: “I have done a disservice to my reputation as a devil, as I was unable to predict this outcome.”
MC: “I know I shouldn’t have left, it was thoughtless of me and....I didn’t even get a present.”
MC: “I’m really sorry for all of this.”
A faint smirk pulled at his lips, as his voice dropped into a deep and seductive tone.
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Sariel: “A ‘present’...?”
Sariel: “---Then, what do you say to this ‘captured princess’ as a suitible present?”
MC: “W-what?”
His fingers lazily crawled along my skin---up my neck, to my chin and lips...
Sariel: “Do you realize? You are at the mercy of a demon far worse than the men from before.”
(Sariel? W-what are you--)
A warm sensation began to simmer inside of my body as he continued to trace the shape of my lips.
Sariel: “My, my what a delectibale shade of red you’ve turned into, like a lovely ripe apple...I’m quite tempted to have a bite.”
As his lips came closer I could only think that he was about to bite me and--
I squeezed my eyes shut and...suddenly the pressure around my hands faded away...the were freed!
My eyes snapped opened and I blinked up at the smirking devil above me as he further warned me.
Sariel: “I hope this has helped you learn a lesson to not be so careless in the future.”
With a graceful gesture, he offered me a his gloved hand.
Sariel: “---Now then, let us return with haste.”
Making our way back to the castle by carrage, I continued to steal glances at Sariel who sat opposite of me.
(What the heck is going on with me....I feel like I’m going insane...)
He wasn’t even touching me anymore but my heart was trembling so much it was like he was reaching right into my heart.
My neck and lips...Even now I can remember the feel of his fingers through the material of his gloves.
Sariel: “Something on your mind.”
Last I remember private thoughts were suposed to be private. So how was it he could always tell when I was troubled?
As frustraiting as it was being read so easily, I just decided to tell him what’s been on my mind...Well, outside of thinking about him touching me.
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MC: “You like ale, right? That’s what I heard. So, if there’s time, do you mind comming with be to get some?”
Sariel: “Of course, but I must say how generous you are today...fisrt presenting me with a captive princess, and soon a drunken one.”
I was tongue tied, his voice low and dipped with a sensual tone. Once again, this ‘devil’ saw right through to my very heart.
Sariel: “Do remember, you are Belle. One such as yourslef shouldn’t be so easily toyed with by the tongue of a devil.”
Hearing his words sent both warmth and frustration corsing through me.
(The reason I’m so annoyed....I think I know why..)
My heart hammered in my chest, as memories from before flashed through my head, so real I could hear his words, feel his touch---
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Sariel: “---Then, what do you say to this ‘captured princess’ as a suitible present?”
MC: “W-what?”
Sariel: “Have you realized? You are at the mercy of a demon far worse than the men from before.”
~~~~End Flashback~~~~
(What he said then...he was right...)
Because my heart---was already in the hands of a beastly devil.
OMG Sariel!!! I love him sooo much!! Also can I just say the fact that Sariel’s choice of weapon is a whip....Yall my mind...I just can’t...
Well I assume it’s a whip since in the gatcha cards when they all have their weapons that’s what Sariel uses.
Also, I apologize for the translations in this one. There were a couple of sentences that I just could not understand, so I kind of did my own thing there, so if it sounds a bit weird in somple places that’s why. 
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gojology · 2 months ago
Escape From Reality.
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The Request:
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pairing : yuuji itadori x stressed! fem s/o reader warnings : mentions of death, cursing, didn’t re-read, INCREDIBLY RUSHED. wordcount : 2333 a/n : sorry anon, this has been sitting at the very bottom of my requests and i feel really bad. regardless, i hope you still like this. i’m not familiar with yuuji’s character as i am with gojo but i hope this still does you justice. this is also really rushed, since i’m leaving for a trip tomorrow.
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    Constant twisting and turning, the fight replaying in your head. You couldn’t relax, no, the events from a few days ago had been keeping you awake for who knows how long. Eyes bloodshot, strained from being kept open all day, yet you couldn’t close them. You had paid no thought to anyone gracious enough to give you attention, instead spending most of your time to yourself in your room.      Your curtains were kept shut, and a steadily growing mountain of tissues was getting taller and taller. The room was completely black, and only filled with your sniffling. To be quite honest, you didn’t know why you were crying. You won the fight, sure, but you felt so useless and insignificant compared to the likes of your peers.     You knew your role, but it was horrifying. Fighting curses wasn’t something new to you, you grew to enjoy it as a sport of some sorts, but this fight left some sort of mental scar on you. Images of the curse controlling humans like they were puppets on strings, and you had to kill every. single. last. one.      They looked so human, so scared of what was happening to them, their shocked faces eventually growing into solemn, dark ones. While Megumi and Nobara were off on their own mission, you had been left with Yuuji to kill the curse, perhaps it was a stroke of unluckiness, but you had been instructed to kill something you swore you wouldn’t kill; humans.      You knew your boyfriend, Yuuji was taken aback too, his carefree happy-go-lucky personality evaporating into thin air, instead replaced with a neutral face. You didn’t have the power to conceal your tears like he did though, even just a few minutes away from the battlefield, you let them flow free, but you did the job anyways. You saw him stare at you, worry evident on his features from the corner of your eyes.     Laying back down on your bed, you sniffled, dabbing at your eyes. You felt like a killer, something inhumane. Lost in your thoughts, you stared at your ceiling and thought of better days or random scenarios.      Knock. Knock. Knock.      The knocking was quiet at first, calm, and you figured it was Nobara willing to help you, she had done it a few times before when you came back from traumatic missions. You found it hard to relate to her though, and even though you appreciated her keeping you in her thoughts, you just didn’t want any contact right now.      The knocking grew more aggressive, and you knew that wasn’t Nobara. Nobara was kind when she was trying to help someone, putting her usual sassy behavior aside to comfort them. You knew she wasn’t going to rapidly knock at your door, in fact she would’ve left by now.       “Who is it?” you mumbled, lifting your covers up and sliding into the warmth, hiding most of your face with the blanket. The only thing that was out were your eyes.      “Uhhh... Yuuji? Your boyfriend?” a voice nervously croaked, muffled. “The door’s locked, but I came here to give you some sweets! Gojo-Senpai brought them earlier for everyone to share, and I grabbed some flavors for you that I thought you’d like.”       You shot back up, candy didn’t sound that bad right now.      “Come in.” you respond, shuffling around with the tiny amount of time you had left to make your room look just a bit more presentable.      “The door’s locked.” you heard him stifle a laugh pathetically, you could hear it from your bed.      “Shit! That’s my fault.” fast-walking towards the door, you stumbled. Dirty clothes were strewn about, a mix of empty snack bags also in the mess. It would be impossible to clean this all up in just 5 minutes without Yuuji growing suspicious. Taking a deep breath in, you threw the laundry you could find closest to you into the laundry basket. You didn’t want the love of your life seeing you like this.     You didn’t have enough time to fix your hair, and it seems Yuuji reads your mind. “Don’t worry about how you look, by the way. Actually, lovebug, don’t worry about anything okay? Just open the door.” he says it with a mixture of doubt and  anxiety.      You feel your expression soften, this was one of the things you loved about Itadori Yuuji. He was mild, he knew when to joke or not, and this time it seemed like he was keen on making you happy. Reaching out to unlock the door knob, you pause, still worried about how ugly you might look, but you open the door anyways.       And there stood Itadori Yuuji, dumbly looking at you, a pile of wrapped candies cupped in the palm of his hands. Once it seems to register through your mind that you standing in front of him, he tosses the candy aside, the colorful wrappers raining down on the both of you, and hugs you.       It’s a deep bear hug, and your arms loosely wrap around his too, steadily getting tighter and tighter as you realize how much you truly missed this. Head snuggling deep into his shoulder and breathing in his scent. So friendly and inviting, you stay in his embrace for a few more seconds, and your mind is finally at ease for just a little.       “Hey there, sweetie.” he finally says, lifting his head up after what seemed like eons, a small smile on his lips. He looks so cheerful, leaning in and kissing the top of your forehead before pulling back, studying your face.        You feel utterly self conscious, pushing his face back with your hand.        “Hey. I’m kind of crusty and I haven’t washed my face in a while-”        Yuuji doesn’t give you another second to finish, instead smothering your face with even more kisses, and your skin heats up as soon as the first sloppy chaste puppy kiss is placed.        “Fuck, I mean, fudge. What are you talking about (Y/N)?!” he looks at you like you’re a giant spider, concerned. “You’ve gotta be blind.”        “You’re the prettiest girl I’ve ever seen.”         You swallow a squeal, instead giving him a small smile, something that you hadn’t done in days. It feels so good to see him again.         “Hey- get back in bed, okay? I’ll be back in a jiffy, I’ve gotta pick all these candies up.” Yuuji kisses the tip of your nose again, using his fingers to pull at your cheeks. It’s been a while since you’ve seen his smile, and you realized just how quickly you had forgotten that his eyes almost closed when he smiled, simply because of how big and toothy it was.        “Yeah. Okay.” you say, before turning your back on him, you look down, and he’s looking back at you, knees on the floor. One hand is already half filled with the candies, and he gives you yet another shit-eating grin, flashing a quick thumbs up before continuing to pick up the wrappers. You giggle, you suddenly felt so bubbly.        Immediately leaping into your bed, you watch him, feet swaying in the air picking up the candies. Yuuji’s muttering under his breath about God knows what, and only then do you realize how lucky you were to have him.        Not long after, he skips over to your bed, closing the door behind him, hopping on one leg and taking his beaten up shoes off. Humming a tune, his fingers flicked on the light switch, you note how he looks so genuinely happy. Setting the candies down onto the blankets, he glances at you with these sort of stone cold serious eyes, as if he meant business.       Those feelings return back again. What’s with the stare?       “Hey. (Y/N).” he places a reassuring hand on your shoulder, rubbing your skin, goose bumps suddenly covering your skin. “I know I was only here to give you candies- and it’s true I was, I’m actually really concerned about you.” Yuuji too crawls onto your bed.       “Get nice and comfy okay? Here.” he digs into his pajama pockets, and pulls out a pre-packaged kikufuku mochi. “I know Gojo-sensei says no sweets after bedtime, but I sneaked one for you from his office because I thought It’d make you feel better.”        You take it without another word. The thought was nice, after all.       “Have you eaten, princess?” he breathes, placing a hand onto your forehead. “You seem really warm, do you need any water?”        He was suddenly so serious, you don’t how to respond. At first you look at him, hoping your eyes tell him all he needs to know, but he looks unblinkingly back, and it seems like he wants an answer, stat.        “No. I haven’t. Water wouldn’t be bad.” you answer, looking down at your lap. Why did it feel like you disappointed him?        “I’ll ask Gojo-sensei to maybe order takeout, It’s not that late. Do you have any water in your room? I don’t want to leave you right now.”        Something about this conversation was awkward, and you didn’t like it.        “Yeah, I don’t know where though.”        “That’s okay, snugglekins. I’ll retrieve them! Don’t you worry.” he rubs your hair so gently, it’s like the hand isn’t even there.        “The room is really messy-”        Yuuji looks at you, a bit annoyed, which you guess was justifiable, but still acting friendly. “I know, but all that matters to me right now is you, not you’re room.” he’s crawling on the ground now.      “You’re acting too serious.” you cheekily retort back mindlessly, covering your mouth as you do so.        “I know I am, but when my girlfriend is thinking and acting like this, I need to make sure you feel better.” he tosses you a water bottle, and you nod your thanks, the crinkling music to your ears. You twist the cap off, and take a long swig out. The liquid was refreshingly cold.      “No candy until you tell me what’s going on, okay? If you don’t want to tell me, that’s okay, but just... Tell me what I can do to make you feel better. I hate seeing you sad.”      “Are you my dad or something?” you joke, but he squints at you, not cracking a single smile.        Then, he draws out a long, “Ohhhhhhhhhh!” for a second, eyes widening before stroking his chin, like one of those wide grandpas with the long beards you see in those Chinese dramas.       He splutters for a split second, before coughing. “Well, I am merely a wise old man. I must offer you my intellect... And I’m slightly forgetful, so you know- jokes don’t occur to me very well.” he even said it in an old man voice.        “That was horrible.” is all you state. You silently appreciate his stupid humor, even in what seemed to be a serious situation.       “Thanks!” he chirps. Then he hops back into the bed, he too slipping under the comforting blankets. “Now, tell me, what’s on your mind?’        “Nothing.” you say sheepishly.       “Stop lying to meee, come on. No judging.” his fingers weave into yours, and your breath hitches.        “Promise?”        “Promise.” his fingers tighten around yours as he says this.        Taking a deep breath in, you straighten, leaning yourself against his shoulder, and Yuuji doesn’t move, adjusting to the newfound weight.         Tears start forming as soon as you open your mouth to speak. “I just really hated how I had to- you know. Kill... Humans. A-and, It’s just that I feel really.... Guilty?” you phrase it like a question almost, and you take a shuddering deep breath in, it was going all out or never.         He nods his head, and you take this as a sign to continue. “I just... I feel so useless.. I feel like you didn’t even c-care? A-and..” tears start railing down your cheeks, and you blink like it’s the last think you have to do. “Fuck. Fuck this. I hate this. I hate being so s-soft, and so weak. Why can’t I be like you, or Nobara, or Megumi?”         His thumbs brush your tears away, and he looks at you, so gently and kindly it’s like the wind is touching you. Genuine eyes made you feel so comforted and safe. Like he wouldn’t judge you for a damn thing you’d say.         “You’re wrong.” he says, finally speaking.         You cock your head, as a way of coaxing him to continue.         You feel his chest expand, and fall again, taking in a deep breath. “I did care. I hated the thought of calling people like that, but honey-” he looks down at your face, and he can just tell you’re interested. “These people were put in so much misery, of course we had to kill them. They were in pain, and being used as puppets.”         “But they looked just like a human, and... They even had, you know... Their own, uh, unique voices. And the things they said..” more tears started rapidly falling.         “Hey.” he puts a hard grasp onto your arm when you try to wipe them away. “Stop. You have to constantly remind yourself, these people were being controlled and put through so much excruciating pain. It’s so hard, and it was even harder not to break down and cry in front of you. But we did it together anyways, and we need to get out of this stronger, okay? The missions later on will be even harder, and I want to work alongside you- not just protect you”         The last sentence punched you right in the gut, it felt so right hearing it come out of his mouth, and you start full on sobbing, rubbing your wet face into his t-shirt, your tears seeping into the fabric. You’re full aware he probably needs to change, but you don’t care. You truly missed him, even though it had only been a few days.         “Fuck. I love you.” you croaked, giving him a sloppy, even wetter peck on the check.        “I love you too, princess.”        He really was your escape from the reality of being a Jujutsu sorcerer.      
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Arrow through the Heart
If TWST won’t give me Cupid Rook, then I will make my OWN Cupid Rook. Make the content you want to see in the world.
... Also I wanted an excuse to write Octatrio being capitalists--
***Warning: Mild Chapter 3 and Floyd Dorm Uniform SSR spoilers!***
Imagine this...
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“Chevalier des Roses!!”
Trey nearly dropped his pastry bag as the doors to the Heartslabyul kitchen slammed open, revealing a familiar huntsman. Rook had forgone his usual school uniform and Pomefiore robes in favor of something... somehow even more showy.
He paraded in wearing strappy sandals, and a violet tunic with a golden hem, a flowy, pure white toga draped over the tunic. A crown of laurels rested on his blonde bob, and he sported a pair of fake wings. Strapped to his back was a quiver loaded with arrows, and in his hands was his trusty bow, gilded with gold today. His face, too, was aglow--due in part to his blushing pink makeup, and the small hearts he had peppered along his cheekbones.
“What the... What are you wearing?” Trey asked, his eyebrows furrowing. “I thought Halloween was already over.”
“Non, non! This ensemble, you see, is meant to celebrate the spirit of Valentine’s Day!” Rook clarified, wagging a finger at his peer. “I am dressed as Cupid, the Messager de L’amour himself!!”
“I... I see.”
No, I don’t.
“In any case, you can’t be in the kitchen looking like that,” Trey scolded him, eyeing how Rook’s toga hung precariously off an exposed shoulder. “It’s a huge health and safety violation to be in places where food is prepared if you’re not fully covered.”
“Not to worry, Trey-kun!” Rook reassured him with a boisterous laugh. “We need not dawdle for much longer here!”
“Wait, we?”
“Of course!! Even a God of Love such as Cupid is in need of an assistant!”  Rook declared, seizing Trey by the wrist. He waved excitedly at the exit and began tugging him toward it. “Come!! Your presence is needed elsewhere!!”
“Wait, wait, wait...!!” Trey protested, clawing to latch onto the kitchen counter--but Rook was stronger, and pried him away. The Heartslabyul vice-dorm leader looked helplessly at his pastries as he was hauled off. “My cupcakes just finished cooling, they need to be iced and refrigerated--”
“Désolé, Chevalier des Roses, but love is blind and waits for no one--it comes when you least expect it! And right now, love is in desperate need of a herald,” Rook chirped back.
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“... So, uh. What’s this all about?” Trey inquired, glancing anxiously between Rook (who was still dressed up in that silly Cupid costume) and Azul.
He and the huntsman sat across from the Octavinelle dorm leader, a low coffee table separating them. Flanking either side of Azul were the infamous Leech twins, Floyd leaning casually against the sofa upon which Azul sat, and Jade standing astute, hands folded behind his back.
From the moment Rook had shoved him through the mirror portal and into a consultation room, Trey had sensed a certain tenseness in the air. That tenseness became an oppressive animosity the instant Rook and Azul locked eyes. Neither had spoken a word to one another since they had been led into the meeting.
“Rook-san here is encroaching on our territory,” Azul finally began, his tone icy.
“Your territory? This is a school campus. The only person this ‘territory’ belongs to is the headmaster,” Trey pointed out, earning an amused chuckle from Jade. “What’s so funny? Don’t tell me Rook caused a scene in the middle of the Mostro Lounge or something.”
“The fact that you even brought that up as a possibility is worrisome,” Azul sighed, pushing his glasses up. “But no, that is not the cause for concern--not today, at least.”
“What Azul means to say,” Jade piped up, “is that Rook-san is posing as competition for our Valentine’s Day business venture.”
“You... You are?” Trey raised an eyebrow at his Science Club companion. “I didn’t take you to be a secret business tycoon, Rook.”
“I am not,” the huntsman replied. His glare intensified. “It is these three that seek to tarnish the celebration of love by commercializing it.”
“Octavinelle is offering a number of Valentine’s Day adjacent services, including the option to purchase stuffed animals, candies, cards, balloons, and flowers... as well as a delivery service for said gifts,” Azul explained, frowning. “All for a slight fee, of course, to ensure that we make a healthy profit from bulk buying.”
“Okay. I’m following so far.”
“The issue is that Rook-san is attempting to do the very same--delivering heartfelt messages and letters--for free,” Azul continued. He spat out the word free as though it were diseased and maggot-infested. “This will significantly cut into our profit margins--”
“Roi de Fort, I cannot, in good faith, allow you to have a monopoly on Valentine’s Day,” Rook cut him off, abruptly standing up. “Love is something that cannot be bought and sold. You cannot put a price on love and manipulate who can access it and who cannot.”
“I beg to differ,” Azul snorted. He jerked his chin to Floyd. “Show him the data.”
“Rogerrr~” Floyd yanked out a fat folder from a bookshelf and chucked it onto the coffee table. Charts, graphs, and tables spilled out, denoting several sales figures.
“There are many who are willing to pay for a quality service,” Azul bragged, a smug smile briefly returning to his lips. “So I have called Rook-san here to request that he kindly quit playing pretend and leave the role of playing ‘messenger of love’ to the real professionals. That being said... I do not understand why you are here, Trey-san. I only recall asking for Rook-san’s presence.”
“I actually don’t know why I’m here either,” Trey confessed, shaking his head. “Rook just kind of dragged me along for the ride.” As he usually does.
“Chevalier des Roses is here today as my assistant! We did not come to yield to your demands, Roi de Fort--We have come... to challenge you!!”
“Th-There you go again using we...!!” Trey sputtered, his stomach sinking. “I never agreed to any of this, you know?”
“A challenge?” Azul’s eyes flashed dangerously. “You have my attention. What exactly do you propose?”
“Chevalier des Roses and myself, verses any two of your choosing,” Rook countered smoothly. “One day for both teams to deliver as many love messages as possible. Whichever side has the highest count at the end of the day will be the one that gets to claim the territory. The other side is to back down quietly.”
“Oh? That sounds rather... enticing. Quite enticing, indeed.” The octopus glanced to his two henchmen. “Jade. Floyd. I will leave this task in your capable hands. Our pride is on the line--don’t fail me now, boys.”
“As you wish.”
“We shall reconvene at this time, tomorrow, to present our own records. There is to be no foul play,” Rook clarified, “I know of the tricks up your many sleeves, Roi de Fort.”
“No foul play. We shall increase our numbers through just means and legitimate sales--and I trust you two to keep an accurate count of your free deliveries,” Azul agreed, holding up his hands in an act of mock defeat. “Then...”
“The game is afoot!”
“It’s a deal.”
“Wait, wait--don’t I get a say in this?” Trey protested, rising from his seat. “You guys can’t just make a decision without...”
“It appears not,” Jade laughed lightly. “Why not relax and go along for the ride, Trey-san? You may just find it that much more entertaining.”
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“Here you go! Thanks a ton for running Leona-san’s lunch to him for me, nishishishishi~” Ruggie forked over a post-it note with his scribbles and a few sandwiches in a plastic bag. “Gotta snag whatever free deals I can, right?”
“Our pleasure, Monsieur Dandelion!” Rook bowed with a flourish before accepting the items. (He was quick to turn around and hand the sandwiches to Trey, while securing the post-it note to one of his arrows with a crimson ribbon.) “We shall ensure these are delivered to Roi du Léon posthaste!”
“Glad to hear you’re doin’ something good for once, weirdo,” Ruggie giggled into his hand. “Alright, I’m off on another errand. See ya around.”
With a wave, the hyena vanished down the path.
“We’re making great progress, Trey-kun!” Rook slapped his companion on the back, causing the sandwiches to nearly spill out of Trey’s hands.
“Yeah... I guess? It does make people happy to save some money,” he shrugged, thinking back to Ruggie’s wide grin. “Price markups for the holidays are no joke.”
“Precisely why we mustn’t lose to Monsieur Mastermind and Monsieur Kills-for-Thrills. Come...!! To locate Roi du Léon!” With a flourish, Rook bounded away, leading the duo in the direction of the Botanical Garden.
“You’re really passionate about this, huh?” Trey tried at a smile. (He had given up resisting around 3 deliveries into the day.)
“Oui.” The huntsman’s green eyes glimmered like jewels. “Roi du Fort’s ambition is admirable, but... to hoard away love, that which is beautiful, for himself, and to charge a price to share it... It cannot be done.”
“I can’t say I agree with that.”
“Chevalier des Roses...!!” A hand flew to Rook’s chest, accompanying his gasp of horror. “A herald of love such as yourself should not spout such severe words!”
“First of all, I’m no herald. I’m just here because of an unfortunate series of events. Second of all, Azul’s right.” Trey held up the bag of sandwiches. “Lots of people make money from selling seasonal goods. My family’s bakery does the same--and then the day after, everything’s 50% off to get rid of the extra stock. You can put a price on love--or however you define ‘love’.”
Rook stopped, making a complete turn to face his peer. It’s true--he looked ridiculous in his winged getup--but with the sunshine streaming at him, the huntsman almost seemed like Cupid himself, cast in a golden glow.
“How do you define love, Trey-kun?”
“Intense affection,” he said, almost immediately. The dictionary definition. “Whether platonic or romantic. Why? Do you think of it as something different?”
“To me, love is simply... love!! It needs no further explanation,” Rook insisted with a laugh. He grasped Trey’s hands in his and tugged him along, beaming broadly--as though made of sunshine himself.
“That’s not a real definition.”
“Ah, but...” His eyes creased with delight. “Each person has their own way of defining ‘love’. Who is to say that another person can tell you your definition is valid or not? Who is to judge the value, the ‘price’, of your ‘love’, if not yourself?”
“That’s...” Trey’s voice trailed off. “Is that why you’re so into this?”
“Perhaps!” Rook chirped, looking to the blue sky overhead. “I believe that love is something worth sharing. It has no limits, no bounds. Love is all-powerful, and it has the ability to make this world of ours that much more beautiful.”
He led Trey down the path in a meandering pattern, with whimsical turns and twirls. Stopping to smell the roses--the flowers along the way. His laughter, like the tinkling of bells and birdsong upon the spring breeze.
This man.
He loved life--he loved love, and he wasn’t afraid to show it.
“... Rook, wait,” Trey called, tugging his partner to a stop.
“I’m not saying I suddenly buy your whole love spiel--I definitely don’t, but... maybe, just maybe, I understand your mindset a little more.” At last, a small smile blossomed on Trey’s face. “So, from me to you, here’s a free love message of my own: thanks for being you.”
“Chevalier des Roses...!!”
Rook spread his arms, on the verge of an embrace--but Trey held up a hand, blocking him.
“Come on. We’ve got mail to deliver--and time is working against us.”
Tick, tock.
A race against the clock.
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“Oya, Rook-san, Trey-san... The both of you look to be quite exhausted. Are you, perhaps, still worn out from running about campus all of yesterday?” Azul’s expression was polite enough, but his tone was slightly mocking.
“We’re fine, thanks for asking,” Trey said, cutting in before Rook could respond. “You don’t need to worry about us, though. I’d say we’re both pretty fit--and it makes sense for you to not be tired, seeing as it was Jade and Floyd that did the deliveries for you.”
“I can see that even Heartslabyul’s vice-dorm leader has some bark of his own.” The octopus tilted his head toward Floyd, who passed along a sheet of paper with a number written on it. “Let’s get right to the point.”
“Let’s,” Rook agreed, producing his own sheet of paper from a pocket.
“On the count of three, we will each reveal our total count.”
“Oui. I trust that you have not manipulated the numbers?”
“I trust that you haven’t as well.”
“There is no need for us to! Love will lead us to victory!”
“Hmph. Enough chatter.”
Silence fell upon the room as both teams stared at the other’s count.
“Mon dieu... It appears we have achieved the same number,” Rook gasped.
“What? How is this possible?!” Azul’s eyes rapidly shifted from his number to Rook’s, then to the twins. Something burned intensely in his gaze--rage? But he would not fully commit to acting on it, instead choosing to stew in the more subdued flavor of annoyance.
“My, what are the chances of such a thing happening? Fufufu. It seems the Fates are quite the fickle creatures.”
“Eeeeh? So what happens now? Cuz if there’s a tie, that means there’s no winner...”
“I think it’s pretty clear what this means. Azul can keep making his sales, and Rook can keep... well, doing Rook things. Neither will have complete control of the market, but it’s up to the sender who they want to use.” Trey adjusted his glasses, eyes flickering from the Octavinelle trio to the huntsman. “That’s fair, right?”
Azul made a face that implied he was dissatisfied--but despite that, he sighed and extended a hand.
“Fair enough. A truce, then, Rook-san?”
“C’est une trêve!” Rook clapped his hand against Azul’s and shook vigorously. The poor octopus was yanked this way and that--and both eels made no effort to save him.
“All’s well that ends well, ahaha... Now that that’s settled, maybe we can have some cupcakes to celebrate--though they may be a little stale since they’ve been out overnight.”
“Cupcakes sound delicious, Chevalier des Roses!” Rook slung an arm around his friend and pulled him close. “Allow me to pitch in to this feast! I shall provide a selection of fine game...!!”
“You really don’t need to contribute anything.”
“Oh, but I do! After all...” The huntsman threw Trey a wink. “It was your love message that pulled us into that tie.”
“It was? Somehow, I doubt that...”
“I told you before, did I not, Trey-kun? Love is all-powerful!!”
“Now you’re just saying strange things again!”
As the members of the Science Club continued to bicker with one another, the Octavinelle trio looked on--Azul quietly seething.
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“... Jade. Floyd. Why was our total count not higher? I believe I had instructed you to buy gifts for one another to make a safety net for us.”
“Oya, did you say that?”
“Wipe that smug smile off your face. You know very well what you were told. So tell me--why did we not win by a landslide?”
“Fufufu. Well, if you must know, Floyd was short on pocket money. There were only so many purchases I could make by my lonesome, you see.”
“What? Floyd... What happened to all of your Madol?!”
“Mm? I was hungry, so I spend it on some peppermint candies from Umiuma-kun’s store~”
“Are you... Are you joking?”
“Ehehe, nope!”
“... I feel faint.”
“Would you like for me to brew you a revitalizing tea blend to drown your sorrows in?”
“Eeeeh, I don’t see what the big deal is. If I share some candy with you, will you cheer up, Azul?”
“To think we lost out on such high profit margins because of your sugar cravings, Floyd...!! Mmm... Mmmmmm... MOUUUUUUU YADAAAAAAAA!!!”
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luci-in-trenchcoats · 3 months ago
By Your Doorstep (Part 4)
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Summary: The reader and Dean celebrate Tessa’s birthday with a big surprise before making a drastic change to their relationship...
Pairing: Doctor/Neighbor!Dean x reader
Word Count: 4,100ish
Warnings: language, angst, mentioned past sexual assault (not graphic)
A/N: Parts of this series are told from two different POV’s. Dean’s POV are written from limited third person. Reader’s POV are second person (like a typical reader insert). Enjoy!…
Dean’s POV
Two Weeks Later
“Oh fuck yeah!” said Dean, jumping up and down in the driveway as he read over the letter in his hands. 
“Dr. Dean that’s a bad word,” said Emily, the five year old three houses down. Dean slapped a hand over his face as she rode past on her bike, her father laughing to himself.
“Hope it’s good news, Dean,” said Chris.
“Very. Sorry about that,” said Dean, Chris waving him off as Dean jogged back inside. He read over the letter again and looked through the packet. “Alright. As long as you keep a B average or above you’re golden kiddo. You get straight A’s anyways so that shouldn’t be a problem.”
Dean smiled and gathered up all of the documents, getting them together with Tessa’s birthday present. Y/N had tried to tell him that giving away his old iPhone was too much but all it did was sit in a drawer now when it worked perfectly fine. He was pretty sure she wasn’t going to be thinking about the phone at all once she found out about the grant.
He looked back at the bag on the table and frowned. Maybe she’d take it the wrong way, like he was trying to save her sister or their family or something like that. He could have given them the application and had them fill it out. They would have probably gotten it still. Dean knew his letter he’d included didn’t hurt but he didn’t want to be that guy. He was already a doctor, already helped Y/N with a job, already paid for dates and things. It was no issue for him at all and he knew she didn’t care about the money but he didn’t want to rub it in her face that he could help more than she could.
Dean grabbed his phone and called Cas, Sam stuck in some network client thing all night he’d told him. It rang a few times before it picked up, the echo in the background telling him he was on speaker.
“Deano!” said Benny. “Gonna make it over tonight after all?”
“Hey guys,” said Dean, sitting down on his couch. “You got the crew together?”
“Nah, just us and the girls. They’re still out shopping. What’s up?” asked Cas.
“You know Y/N?” asked Dean.
“The girl you’re clearly in love with? Yes we know her,” laughed Benny. Dean was quiet and heard them shift on the other end.
“Everything okay?” asked Cas.
“I think I fucked it up. I think I’m going too far too fast.”
“What do you mean?” asked Benny.
“Tessa, her little sister, she’s in high school and I applied for a grant on her behalf for her college and she got it,” said Dean.
“That’s a problem how?” asked Cas.
“I don’t want it to come off as me trying to save them or anything. I’m nervous she’s gonna get mad at me,” said Dean. His friends were quiet and knew a teasing comment wouldn’t come. “Guys.”
“Tell her you applied on a long shot and a grant is what helped you with school. You’re not saving the day, just sharing a benefit you got,” said Benny. “Shit I wish I’d had someone do that for me.”
“What’s going on Dean? You’re normally the last person to freak over shit,” said Cas. Dean sat back and stared up at the ceiling. 
“Talk to us bud,” said Benny.
“I like this girl and it’s been years and years since I had a girlfriend. You guys know I’m not good for more than a fuck,” said Dean.
“Lisa was a super bitch and you know that’s not true,” said Benny.
“I am in my thirties and I’ve never had a real relationship. I don’t even know how. I’m gonna fuck this up so bad. I know it.”
“Contrary to how often I call you a dick, you are one of the best people I’ve ever met,” said Cas.
“I agree and you know all our friends and especially Sammy would say the same thing. Brother you gotta relax. This girl from what you’ve said and everybody else says, well we ain’t never seen you so happy so stop freaking, go get ready for your date tonight and put some faith in this girl that she’s not gonna hurt you back,” said Benny.
“I didn’t say-”
“Dean, we’ve known you forever. We know when you’re scared. I know most people in your life end up hurting you but take it from us, not everyone will. I got a good vibe from her,” said Cas. 
“Me too,” said Dean quietly.
“You doing okay?” asked Benny. “In general you know.”
“Yeah. Most of the time I’m great now. The past few weeks have been awesome. I think maybe that’s why I keep freaking out over this girl. It’s like, fucking finally, I understand what a good relationship can be.”
“You been to Ketch lately?” asked Cas.
“No, not as a patient. I’m okay.”
“Well still go for a tag up every once in a while for us,” said Benny.
“I know. Never would have gone without you assholes getting on my back in the first place.”
“That’s what friends are for,” said Cas, Benny chuckling. “So where you guys going tonight?”
“Fancy,” they both said and Dean rolled his eyes, smiling to himself.
“Goodbye assholes,” said Dean, hearing them laugh before he hung up. He sat up and took a deep breath. “Alright. Shower. Shave and fingers crossed tonight goes well.”
Reader’s POV
“Okay, presents before or after dinner?” you asked as you carried in a bag to Tessa’s room. 
“Before, obviously,” she said. 
“Alright, well I know you wanted something really badly this year,” you said. “Why don’t you open the green one first?”
“This feels like an iPhone box…” she said with a big smile. She tore off the paper and grinned. “Awesome! What one is it?”
“It’s a ten. It’s used but in really good condition. I got you a case and extra charger too,” you said. “We can swing to the store and activate it tomorrow.”
“Thanks, Y/N, really,” she said. She grabbed the card next and her eyes went wide when she saw the cash inside. “Y/N.”
“It’s your money you gave me. It’s yours. Buy whatever you want, okay?” you said. She nodded and unwrapped a few more small things, a book she’d been talking about, some make up you knew she’d use, a new pair of her nike running shorts that’d been on sale thankfully. You smirked when she picked up the last two presents in the bag. “Alright. I hope these are...suitable for you.”
She tore off the wrapping on one and started to laugh.
“It’s hot pink,” she giggled. “Why is it hot pink?”
“Cause vibrators come in a variety of colors,” you said with a laugh. “I will let you read through the charging instructions on your own and same for the other box. There is toy cleaner because yes you need to wash these things properly and I got some water based lube. Go with water based. It dries up faster but it works better to me. Oh and wash everything like five times before it goes anywhere near anything, okay?”
“Okay,” she laughed. “I can’t believe you actually bought me this stuff.”
“Can’t get pregnant off a toy,” you said.
“Definitely can’t do that,” said Dean, Tessa wide eyed as he popped his head into the doorway. She shoved the boxes back into the bag and he laughed. “I’m a doctor. Sex doesn’t bother me and I think your sister has a point.”
“Oh my God, I forgot he was here,” she said, running her hands over her face.
“I was wondering where you two ran off to,” he said. He stepped inside and pulled out a box from behind his back. “Happy birthday, Tessa.”
“Thanks,” she blushed. She undid the bow and paper, smiling as she opened the box. There was an envelope inside but she picked up the headphones and shook her head. “Dean I can’t accept this. It’s too much. I already know the iPhone must have been yours.”
“You are smarter than you look,” he said. “But I can’t accept your refusal of my present. I have new ones and those never get used and I’m bigger than you so you’re gonna lose this argument one way or the other.”
“I’d listen to him, Tessa. He gets his way when he wants it,” you said. She rolled her eyes but smiled.
“Thank you. People haven’t been nice to us the past couple years,” she said. You glanced down to the floor, Dean leaving his arm wrapped around your waist. 
“People weren’t all that nice to me either for a long time,” he said with a nod. “Someday when you’re able, you help somebody else out, understand?”
“Yeah,” she said with a nod.
“Open the envelope. This one’s a present to you both,” he said. You cocked your head as she tore it open, reading for a long time before she pulled out a paper and handed it to you.
“Dean,” you said, sitting down on her bed after you’d read it a few times. “Dean this…”
“It’s a grant. It’s very similar to a scholarship. I’m an alumni of Elmdale and the medical school there. Tessa you qualify and so I applied on your behalf a few weeks ago and you were accepted. The grant will cover half of four years of tuition,” he said.
“What does that mean?” asked Tessa.
“It means we will have to pay very little with financial aid,” you said. She was beaming and you shook your head. “You applied weeks ago?”
“After I met you two. This house seemed familiar to me for some reason until I remembered. Y/N I told you someone helped me when I was eighteen?”
“I think his picture is hanging in the hall,” he said.
“Our dad?” asked Tessa.
“He got me a job and helped me pay for part of my school. I came here once when I needed his help. Your father was a very good man and it’s clear his daughters are the same. Neither one of you deserves to go through all the pain I did. I don’t want you to. It was no trouble at all to do, I swear.”
“Tessa, I work at Dean’s office as a lab tech,” you said. She turned her head and you saw Dean nod. “I lost my job before. We were scraping by. Barely. We’re okay now but without this would have wiped out our inheritance. That was for weddings and down payments for houses. We can keep it now...we can keep the house now.”
“You hate this house though,” she said. “I hate this house.”
“We can downsize,” she said. “Y/N, every night you stare down at their bedroom door. It’s like we live with ghosts or something. It doesn’t have to be so tight. Do we really need a five bedroom house?”
“It’s not as tight anymore. We’ll talk about it. Let’s go celebrate all the good news,” you said. “I’ve been dying for a Monico’s steak.”
“She seemed pretty happy tonight,” said Dean as you sat on the front porch a few hours later. You hummed and rocked in your seat beside him, resting your head on his shoulder. “Did I overstep?”
“No. You were the boy in the mailroom, weren’t you. Dad used to talk about you sometimes. Mostly when I didn’t want to do something. He told me some people my age have it so much harder.”
“True. But you can’t compare one person’s struggles to another’s. It’s not fair to either one.”
“Would you sell this house if you were me?” you asked.
“I like that you live close by. I’d miss that. But it’s a lotta house for the two of you and it sounds like a change might be a good thing. You could downsize to somewhere else in the neighborhood and probably bank a good chunk of money for later on.”
“We could.” Dean was quiet, gears turning in his head. “What are you thinking of?”
“My house is a five bedroom too.”
“Yours is also newer,” you said. “And bigger.”
“Tell me if I’m crossing a line guys...could stay there if you decided to sell this place. Temporarily. Or not temporarily,” he said. You stared up at him and he looked away. “Like I said, I’m sorry, I know it’s...I should go.”
“Hey. I’m not afraid of you.” His head turned back towards you and he swallowed thickly. “Tell me another secret and I’ll you one.”
“I think I I’m falling in love with you and I’m afraid I’m going too fast and that you think I’m creepy or weird deep down and I’m up to something when all I really see is me and my brother in you and your sisters places and I know how much it sucks and how much it hurts and I know you protect her from stuff she doesn’t even know about. I’m sorry for saying that about the house just now. I’d still like to see you though if that’s okay.”
“I think this is fast too but I also think that part of me fell for you the day you carried her home. You don’t want anything from us. Just to help and it’s not because you pity us or anything like that. If I’ve learned anything yet in life it’s that you don’t know when it’s gonna stop and there’s no use in wasting time.”
“What are you saying?”
“You willing to put up with a teenager, a service dog and someone who has not had a moment to themselves in two years?”
“As long as you don’t snore,” he smiled. You laughed and kissed his cheek. “Are you serious?”
“I don’t like this house anymore. If she doesn’t want it, I don’t want it. Maybe we can do some test runs, stay over for a weekend or two, see if we want to make it a not temporary thing.”
“That sounds great,” he smiled. “We’ll figure it out, sweetheart.”
Two Months Later
“I’m home,” you said on the way back from the store. You’d been staying at Dean’s for two weeks now after a nice couple closed on your old house. So far it’d been great and you were perfectly happy to stay there with him and Tessa for the foreseeable future. “I picked up some-”
“He is not my dad. I am eighteen,” said Tessa as she stormed over to the foyer. You glanced back to where Dean was over in the kitchen and sighed. “I want to go to Paulie’s tonight.”
“Who is Paulie?” you asked as you kicked off your boots.
“A friend,” she said.
“You’ve literally never mentioned him before,” you said, carrying some groceries through the family room and to the kitchen.
“That’s what I said,” said Dean as he peeled a potato at the island.
“I thought I said you’re not my dad so you can shut the fuck up.”
“Hey!” you shouted, Tessa freezing up. “Apologize to Dean.”
“We are stable for the first time ever because of him. I trust Dean to make decisions for you when I’m not home. If he said no, then the answer is no. Go to your room,” you said. She grumbled and pounded her feet upstairs. You washed up and gripped the countertop. “I’m sorry. I can’t believe she said that to you.”
“It’s okay. I’ll be the bad guy,” he said as he picked up another potato. “Paulie what’s his face doesn’t sound like he wants anything other than in her pants so she can swear all she likes at me.”
“What’d she say exactly?”
“She wants to go over to Paulie’s tonight to hang out with some friends but I overheard her and Hailey talking earlier this week about a party and I don’t need a medical degree to put it together.”
“If she sneaks out I’ll kill her,” you said. You glanced down to Toast’s dog bowl and paused. “Dean what would happen if she drank on her medication.”
“She can’t drink alcohol on that stuff,” he said. 
“What would happen if she did.”
“She could have a seizure,” he said. 
“Tessa!” you shouted. You jogged upstairs and found her bedroom empty. “Tessa!”
The house was quiet and you put your hands on your head. 
“Toast!” you shouted, the dog trotting out from Dean’s bedroom. You immediately ran inside, Dean already upstairs and you saw her sitting out on the balcony in a chair, her face in her knees. 
“Can I…” said Dean and you nodded. You followed him outside, Dean walking over and squatting by her seat. “Tessa, what are you doing out here?”
“I wish I was normal, didn’t have a fucked up head.”
“I got one too,” he said.
“Do you have to take medicine for seizures? No?” she said.
“No but my dad used to beat me up,” he said. She turned and he nodded. “He would try to beat up my little brother too sometimes but I would take the hits when I could. Tessa, you can’t drink when you’re on your medicine. You just can’t.”
“I know that,” she said.
“You can’t sneak out and leave Toast behind either. It’s not safe.”
“I wasn’t going to.”
“Y/N and I get scared too is all.”
“You just pretend to like me cause you fuck my sister.”
“For the record, I don’t fuck your sister. Relationships are complicated. You might not realize this but I care about you for you. If I didn’t I would not want you in my house, in our house, and I wouldn’t get scared about you going to parties with guys that just want to use you for sex. I give a shit about you Tessa whether you believe me or not.”
“You don’t care,” she scoffed. “You feel sorry for us. Nobody on earth would ask two strangers to move in unless you-”
“Tessa you can think whatever you want about me. I’m not your father and I’ll never try to be him. But I sure as shit know how to be an older brother. So be pissed off and be rude and whatever else you want to. I’ve done this before with my own brother. You don’t scare me. The only thing that does is you getting taken advantage of or you getting hurt and Toast isn’t there to help. Someday you’ll get it through that thick skull of yours what the truth is but until then, I’ll be the asshole who doesn’t let you go to parties you’ll get hurt at.”
“You pity us.”
“I’m jealous of you.” She stared at him and you swallowed in the doorway. “Your parents loved you. Mine didn’t. You want to talk about being fucked up? I’m here anytime.”
She nodded and he sat up on the bench with her. You went inside and finished preparing the potatoes, mashing them up and saving them for later. It was nearly ten by the time you heard the stairs creak and Dean walked down them.
“Y/N,” said Tessa. You got up from the couch and walked to the bottom of the stairs, Tessa glancing down. “I’m sorry for how I’ve acted today and treated Dean lately. I was…”
“It’s okay,” he said quietly as he rubbed her back.
“I was scared when we moved in here a few weeks ago. I don’t want to lose you too and Dean takes up time that it used to be just us and I know the accident wasn’t my fault but I feel guilty still sometimes and I know your life is different because of it too and I want you guys to be happy, I do. I just get scared you’ll forget about me. I don’t wanna be alone. I’m not ready.”
“You don’t ever have to be alone, Tessa,” you said. She nodded and looked up at Dean.
“I know. I was silly. But I’m better now,” she said. 
“It wasn’t your fault,” you said.
“I know,” she said. 
“Why don’t you head to bed, Tess. Tomorrow I can come to your session with you like we talked about,” said Dean. She nodded and walked upstairs, Toast trotting into her room. You walked upstairs and into your bedroom with Dean, shutting the door after yourselves. “I should have...change is difficult on kids with PTSD. I should have realized that’s why she’s been so snippy. I thought it was just hormones.”
“Probably both,” you said, climbing onto the bed. He lay down next to you, staring up at the ceiling. “You care for her.”
“You two are a package deal, sweetheart,” he said with a light chuckle. “Can’t love one without loving the other.”
“Like you and Sam,” you smiled. “I can’t wait to meet him in person.”
“Me too.”
“Is Tessa okay? You guys talked a really long time.”
“She was afraid I would replace her, push her out. Granted I do like spending alone time with you and everything but she needs you and I’m not here to take you away from her. I think she understands that now.”
“Dean why haven’t we had sex?” you asked. He sat up and you shrugged. “We’ve dated nearly three months and you don’t even try to cop a feel. For how fast certain things are between us, that one feels a little slow. I just want to understand. I don’t...I’m not saying it’s a problem I just want to know.”
“You asked me on our first date, or you made a comment, that I don’t seem like the shy around women type.”
“I didn’t use to be. A smidge, especially if they were the one that seemed to be controlling the situation but it was always good. I had some girlfriends, had some hookups. More than my fair share of hookups. The girlfriends…”
“The bitch one?” you said, getting a chuckle out of him.
“I stopped thinking I was relationship material for a while. So I did hookups for a long time and that was good. Until about two years ago. I haven’t had sex since.”
“Did someone hurt you?”
“No. I just...I asked her to stop and she didn’t.”
“Dean she hurt you.”
“It’s not that big a deal.”
“Yes, it is.”
“Well I don’t want to talk about it anymore, okay?” he said. He put his back to you and you took a deep breath. “I’m sorry. I know we sleep in the same bed and…”
“And I don’t need to have sex with you. Would I like it? Sure. But my sister and I aren’t the only ones in this house that need to be taken care of. You’ve done a really good job of that lately and I’d like to start pulling my weight in that department. When you’re ready for sex, you tell me, otherwise, I will just cuddle you real hard until then, okay?”
“Alright,” he said quietly. He reached behind himself and wrapped your arms around him. You kissed the back of his neck, Dean taking slow breaths. “I don’t really know how to let someone take care of me though.”
“We’ll take it slow,” you said. “Like maybe with you being little spoon tonight.”
“Alright. I can try, sweetheart.”
A/N: Read Part 5 here!
231 notes · View notes
marvelfansince08love · 3 months ago
Hey Neighbour! - Part 3
Word Count: 2.5k 
Pairing: Ally Mayfair-Richards x Reader 
Warning: just a bit fluffy x
A/N: Here’s part 3 - I hope you enjoy, loves x
Tags: @waitingfortheendtocome @natasha-danvers @mssallymckenna @grilledcheeseandguavajelly @pearplate @r0an0ke @minavenable @coconutlipss @creepingwolfberry @saucy-sapphic @venablemayfairgoode @veteranwerewolf95 @chewbacca0805 @pluied-ete @nyx-aira @witchxaf @supremeinlilac @black--widxw​ @fireflyglass​ @cordeliafoxxe​ @d14n4ol
Part One, Part Two 
Not my gif! 
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Hey Neighbour! - Part 3 
The school gate is full of parents and guardians anticipating the ear-screeching sound of the school bell. You stand fidgeting slightly as the slight breeze picks up crossing your arms against your chest, actively wrapping the long coat around your body for warmth. A handful of children burst through the double doors of the building heading straight over into your general direction. Your eyes scan frantically for your sweet girl, relaxing a little once you eye her signature beanie. Her innocent eyes clash with your own, a bright smile appearing on her lips as she races towards you. 
“Mommy!” she screeches without a care in the world, her arms stretch out wide as she collides into your stomach making you grunt at the impact. Wrapping your arms tightly around her small frame you allow your nose to rest on top of her covered hair, basking in her presence for a moment. 
“I’ve missed you today, sweet pea. How was it? Did you make any new friends?” you ask excitedly, bursting at the seams. Amelia matches your enthusiasm as she lists her new classmates and her wonderful teacher, she gasps suddenly as if remembering the most important piece of information. 
“And the best part of it all is that Oz is in my new class!” she exclaims, stopping in her tracks to allow you to remove her backpack so you can carry it for her. You gasp excitedly at her words genuinely happy that her already new found friend is in her class putting some of your worries a side. You’re still rather apprehensive about the new move from within the city but you know deep down this a good fresh start for you both. Before you can continue to walk back to the car, a loud voice calls out Amelia’s name making you both turn at the sound. Oz rushes forward making his way over to you both, a woman you don’t recognize racing after him to catch up. 
‘This must be the babysitter,’ You think, remembering your conversation with Ally over the weekend when she invited you into her home. Ally had a big senate dinner in the city and couldn’t get out of it, you debated offering to babysit Oz while she was stuck at work but realised you were still a complete stranger to her despite only living next door and seeing how well set up her home is regarding security you knew Ally was hesitant when it came to trusting people. 
Oz stands next to Amelia as he tries to catch his breath, he waves tiredly at you before adjusting his glasses, his babysitter not far behind.
“Hi, Miss.Y/N.” He greets, still slightly breathless. You grin fondly at the sweet blonde boy, holding your hand out for him to high-five which he reciprocates happily. 
“Hey Oz! How was your first day back at school?” you ask, knowing that Ally had her worries about him despite her attempts to hide it. He smiles shyly and shrugs indifferently.
“It was okay, I guess. Still the same kids and teacher except for Amelia, we’re in the same class this year!” he informs you, making you chuckle at their excitement to be able to spend more time together. You’re secretly grateful that they have become such fast friends. 
“That’s amazing buddy!” you comment, just as his babysitter places a hand on his shoulder. Her flustered state did not go unnoticed. 
“Oz! You gotta wait for me okay? You can’t be scaring me like that.” she scolds softly, fear evident in her tone. Oz nods guiltily before whispering to Amelia who giggles nodding at whatever he told her. You narrow your eyes at the mischievous pair before glancing at the woman who puts her hand out for you to shake.
“I’m so sorry about that, I’m Lily. I babysit Oz when Ally can’t get away from work,” she explains, grinning sheepishly. You take her hand and shake once before awkwardly letting go.
“Hi, I’m Y/N and this is Amelia. We’re Ally and Oz’s new next door neighbours,” you inform her, watching as something clicks within her eyes. 
“Of course! Ally mentioned new neighbours, well it was lovely to meet you both but we gotta run and get home,” she murmurs, as Oz groans in protest. 
“Can’t I hang out with Amelia, Lily please?!” Oz begs, jittering his bottom lip, his big brown eyes wide as you watch her struggle under his adorable gaze. You crouch down to be eye-level with him as his attention draws to you.
“Oz, Lily here probably wants to prepare dinner for you and get you sorted before your mom comes home, yeah?” you justify, watching as he frowns at your words. Knowing you’ll have a battle on your hand you try a different tactic. Leaning forward you take a big whiff in scrunching your nose for extra effect and sniff near him again, he giggles at your silliness. 
“Y/n why are you sniffing me?!” he asks through giggles as Amelia begins to sniff him as well laughing in the process. 
“I think we have one stinky boy on our hands, what do you think Amelia, Lily?” you address the two females watching as Lily picks up on your efforts, nodding along with you. 
“We don’t like stinky boys, mommy,” Amelia comments, scrunching her nose. Oz gasps and protests through more giggles as your fingers meet his ribcage. 
“Noooo, stoo- stop! I promise I’ll bathe!” he says through giggles. You lax from your tickle attack and stand winking subtly at Lily who looks at you gratefully. 
“How about you go home with Lily and then once I’ve spoken to your mom, you can come over to our house during the week for dinner?” you compromise, watching on in amusement as the clogs turn inside his youthful mind. He looks you in the eyes and nods, putting his hand out for you to shake to seal the deal. 
You pretend to spit into your hand before going to take his small one, watching as he pulls a face full of disgust at your gesture but you can see the amusement in his eyes. 
“Deal,” he says, finalising your little exchange. You nod and grab hold of Amelia’s hand who smiles brightly, her cheeks red from the laughter. 
“Bye bye Ozzy, see you tomorrow at school!” she waves her free hand at him. You say your goodbyes to the blonde boy and his poor babysitter, already discovering that behind that shy exterior there is one adorably cheeky little boy.
“Come on you, let’s get you home.” you murmur to your daughter, feeling your arm swing at your side as she skips happily next to you. 
The house is quiet with only the low muffled sounds of the news presenter that echoes from your TV screen in the living room, you sip from your favourite alcoholic beverage as you lazily watch the bright screen while dressed down in a pair of sweatpants and an old big Fleetwood Mac shirt. You were almost ready to call it a night when the sound of keys jingling in the keyhole from outside startles you from your daydreaming, the sudden sound causes you to spill reminisce of the drink onto your pants making you groan before you tense realising that the only other people with a key is your brother and father; who are both back in the city. Wearily walking over to the door you grab hold of the big umbrella by the front door, peeking through the peephole. A faint blurred figure stands next to the door on the other side, the familiar brown short hair and stature makes you relax almost instantly as you place the umbrella down and unlock the door. Ally sways slightly on her feet at the sudden sound and movements of the door opening, her eyebrows furrowed in confusion as she eyes you dressed in a black pantsuit which shows off her curves beautifully. 
“Not that I’m mad about this but why are you in my house?” she asks, her voice slurring slightly in her drunken state making you bite your lip to hold back a smile. Her big brown glossy eyes take in your attire before scanning the hallway past your shoulder, you step closer to her noticing her off balance to help guide her into the warmth of your home. As soon as your hand touches her arm she leans in closer to you, shivering from the night's cold air. 
“I believe you, it is you who is trespassing onto my property, Senator.” you tease, a soft grin appearing onto your lips as you gently guide her into the living room sitting her onto the sofa and taking a seat next to her. Her eyes squint as she takes in the bare living room trying to piece the room together in her head, her red lips forming a perfect ‘o’ as her eyes land onto your amusing form. 
“Oh,” she whispers, before you nod to her silent conclusion. You laugh at her apologetic face which makes her giggle too. “Oh god, I am so sorry. I may have had a little more wine than I originally thought,” she tries to explain through slurred words as she sinks heavily into the sofa, closing her eyes briefly as she places a hand over her them. You pat her knee in comfort still rather amused that someone who is usually so well put together can be such a sloppy drunk.
“Would you like a drink of water, Ally?” you whisper, hoping that the disruption downstairs hasn’t disturbed a sleeping Amelia. She spreads her fingers apart and peeks through the gap nodding, a small pout forming onto her full lips making you linger on the enticing soft red a moment longer before quickly diverting your eyes away and standing muttering “I’ll be just a minute”. 
You let out the breath you're holding and fill the glass up with cold water, taking a few minutes to gather your thoughts. You’ve noticed the small sparks between you both ever since you laid eyes on her through her kitchen window, her eyes always lingering on your lips that little bit longer whenever you spoke when you went to introduce yourself. Rubbing at your temple gently you argue with yourself knowing that the whole reason you moved here was to have a fresh start, just you and Amelia. After your ex-fiance left right after giving birth to Amelia you decided right there and then that you don’t need anyone and even if you did try you would only be blindsided and hurt again. Ally is like a bright burning flame and the more you see her the more that light intrigues you to step forward and become close to it.
‘But at some point that bright light goes off and you are left to feel nothing’ you conclude, shaking your head at your conflicting thoughts before stepping away from the sink and heading back to the living room. You stop in your tracks by the staircase, your eyes widen at the familiar young voice from behind you.
“Why is Miss. Ally in our house, mommy?!” Amelia’s tired voice asks, you turn around and hold your hand out for her to take as she descends from the last few steps. You glance briefly over to Ally who sits on the sofa still, leaning her forearms against the top of the sofa she grins at Amelia. 
“How do you know you’re not in my house?” she questions, a teasing glint in her eyes as Amelia’s eyes widen for a second innocently believing any word from an adults mouth. Her gaze turns to me for confirmation making you quickly shake your head, scolding playfully over to Ally who shrugs innocently. 
“I see the wine has flown from your head to your mouth,” you grumble playfully, watching as she scrunches her nose apologetically. Amelia glances at you confused before turning her gaze back to Ally.
“Are you having a sleepover with my mom?” her innocent eyes stare openly at Ally, who’s lips twitch at your daughter's words, her eyes lingering on your form for a moment, making you squirm slightly under her dark gaze. 
“Well wouldn’t that be fun, huh Melia! Unfortunately silly me got confused and thought this was my  house!” she explains to her gently, her words more clearer now that she’s aware of her current state as well as Amelia’s presence and being a mother herself she knows when to switch back into the role despite the alcohol that swarms around in her head. Ally squints in discomfort as she lightly grazes her temple with her fingertips making you move forward quickly handing her the glass of water, she quietly thanks you and takes a delicate sip sighing in relief at the cold texture. Amelia moves forward and sits next to Ally on the sofa, swinging her legs as they hover above the rug. 
“You gotta headache, Miss. Ally? Mom always tells me to drink lots of water when I get a headache,” she informs, smiling pleased to have informed Ally of something so important. Ally places the glass down on the table and cups Amelia’s cheek, stroking her thumb across her full cheek, smiling adoringly at her. You stand still by the doorway, a sense of warmness spreading across your chest as you watch them interact. Usually you would be wary of new friends touching Amelia so freely but Ally has such a natural instinct to comfort and show simple displays of affection, especially to Oz it almost feels safe to have interacted with Amelia in this way. 
“I’m okay, sweet girl. I was a bit silly at dinner tonight and the wine has made me a little loopy,” she explains to her, smiling wide as Amelia giggles into her hands. 
“Wine is yucky! Mommy says it’s only for adults and it tastes funny,” You nod agreeing with before moving forward and crouching down next to her. 
“That’s right munchkin. Now why don’t you quickly grab your coat and boots so we can walk Ally to her door,” you suggest, watching her once sleepy eyes widen in excitement at the prospect of a late night adventure on a school night even if it’s to walk across the yard. 
“Oh Y/N you really don’t-” you stop her protests with a flick of your hand. 
“It’s fine Ally, I’d feel better if I got you home safe,” you insist, standing to grab your shoes to stop any further protests from the brunette. 
Once you are both ready, you open your front door to allow her and Amelia to step outside. Amelia skips ahead a short feet away leaving you side to side with the brunette beauty, her shoulder brushing lightly against your own making you shiver at the innocent brushing. Ally looks over to you in concern. 
“Are you cold? Honestly, you and Amelia go back in I’m about ten steps away from my doorstep,” she chuckles but you can see in her eyes under the bright glow of the streetlights that she’s grateful for the company, still a little unsteady on her feet. As you reach the porch steps you instinctively place a hand onto her back to steady her balance as she ascends, you feel the small tension in her back from the cold slowly relax under your touch, glancing briefly at her face you notice a small smile gracing her lips softly. As you reach the top Amelia is already waiting for you both rocking back and forth on her heels. 
“Is Ozzy awake? Can we play hide and seek?” she asks excitedly, as she yawns straight after. You share an amusing look with your neighbour, knowing all too well the persistence of a tired child. 
“No sweetheart, he’s in bed or he should be. I’m going to check now to make sure before I go to bed myself,” Ally murmurs quietly, bending down to brush some of Amelia’s escaped strands of hair from under her trusted beanie. Amelia pouts and you groan to yourself knowing what's coming. 
“Okay Amelia Cakes, we’ll see Ozzy tomorrow but you gotta go back to bed once we get in ready to hang out with him tomorrow in school,” you justify, raising an eyebrow at her grumpy expression which falters under your stern but kind gaze. Her shoulders slump as she realises her defeat. 
“Okay, Mommy.” she grumbles tiredly moving closer over to you and cuddling into your side. Ally watches on in light amusement staying quiet while you speak to your daughter. Looking up at her you notice the tiredness forming around her eyes too, deciding to call it night you wait until Ally unlocks her door before giving her a shy smile and wave. 
“Night Neighbour,” you murmur, a small glint of amusement in your eyes as she matches your expression. 
“Good night, dancing queens. Thank you for walking me home,” she whispers, leaning against her door frame a soft smile playing on her lips. You nod once before turning your gaze onto Amelia as you feel your coat tuck downwards on your body. With big pleading eyes you sigh fondly knowing exactly what she wants, crouching you turn away from her and grunt as the new found weight lands onto your back, little legs wrapping around your hips and arms circling around your neck. You stand and smile once more at Ally who watches on fondly before nodding towards your house, she nods in understanding and places a hand on Amelia’s back. 
“Sweet dreams Amelia,” 
“Nighty night, Miss. Ally.” her tired grumbles come from your back as she flaps her fingers in some sort of wave making you both laugh. 
Stepping down the steps carefully you steadily make your way over to your drive, turning back slightly as you see Ally peep over and wave one finally before stepping into the house. Keeping Amelia on your back you make your way through the house and into her bedroom, placing her gently onto the bed with the smallest of bounce making her giggle tiredly. Pulling off her boots and coat you wait for her to crawl under the duvet, beanie still in place. Once settled you take the beanie off and leave it by her bedside, brushing her hair from her face watching her eyelashes flutter as she struggles to stay awake. 
‘Hide and seek huh? Maybe next time kid’ you smile to yourself. Placing a gentle kiss to her forehead you turn her lamp off and switch on her starlight's before leaving the door ajar. 
Making your way downstairs, you go to grab Ally’s empty glass and take it through into the kitchen. Standing by the sink you rinse the glass out and place it onto the drying rack, a light from across the way makes you glance over curiously. To your surprise, standing by her own kitchen window drinking a glass of water is, Ally. As if sensing eyes on her, brown eyes find your form through the window making you tentatively raise a hand and wave in greeting. Ally places her index up to you indicating for you to wait there, she disappears from view for a moment before returning again her gaze falling to the floor for a few moments before locking onto you again an amusing grin in place. 
“Are you sure this is my house?” the question written in bold for you to see from across the way. Clicking onto her game you turn to look for one of Amelia’s old notepads, grabbing a black marker from the draw. 
“I can show you the lease if you like?” her mouth opens wide indicating her laughter before looking down again for a few moments.
“I’ll believe you for now…” 
“Phew, I was worried for a second there” she grins at that, biting down onto her bottom lip as if debating her next move.
“So sleepovers huh?” her eyebrows raise in a teasing manner, wiggling the dark brows for extra effect making you chuckle. 
“Sorry only cool kids allowed ;)”  you shrug indifferently but the small grin that appears upon your lips shows you enjoy teasing her back. 
“That’s a shame, I’m rather inclined to the idea of an adult sleepover” her wicked grin shows her victory over this silent flirting game as you flush and gap at her for a second unable to follow up. Not wanting her to have the last word you confidently write out your next sign. 
“I’m more of a wine and dine first kinda gal, I’m afraid” you say but gulp once you realise the opening you’ve given her. 
“Is that you agreeing to a date that I haven’t even asked you out on yet?” her teasing message makes you groan as you feel your cheeks warm at the question. Placing both hands over your eyes, you miss the fond expression that makes its way onto Ally’s face as she waits patiently for you to look at her again. Peeking through you notice she’s placed a new sign upon the window with a wide smile grazing her lips. 
“8 o’clock Friday? x” are the only words written as she waits for your reply. Biting your lip you contemplate her offer, wanting to push down the negative thoughts that begin to surface. The feeling of nervousness spreads low in your stomach as you think about the last time you even went on a date knowing how well that turned out, looking back over to her face you notice the slight falter in her expression as you take your time to reply. Before you can contemplate further, your hand begins to trace the words that seal the deal. 
“Can’t wait x”
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h3rmitsunited · 3 months ago
The Heart Line
Dirk learns palm reading...sort of... and Todd can totally deal with it... sort of. (Disclaimer: the author (me) knows nothing about palm reading so forgive the’s totally intentional...)
Todd couldn’t really remember when the joke started. Some case months ago, an offhand comment Amanda had picked up on when visiting for a few days that just stuck, and turned into Dirk pretending to get hunches off the lines of his palm.
It turned into, “Todd!” He rubs his fingers over his hand. “My hand lines say it’s over here!” and “I don’t think my dinner line thinks that Chinese is good for dinner tonight. It says pizza is a better idea,” and Amanda’s favorite, “the lines are saying Todd is being a grumpy party pooper right now.” And Amanda loved it, and she knew how much Dirk loved using it to mess with Todd, so she played it up every time she came around, which Todd… just… loved.
Which led to Dirk’s birthday, Amanda grinning as Dirk ripped the wrapping paper off the rectangular present, and breaking into a fit of laughter as he revealed it to the rest of the party. In bold black letters, Palm Reading For Dummies. Dirk gave Todd a pointed and amused look, which Todd responded to with a dramatic eye roll. He didn’t open the book immediately, but after a while, after they had finished opening the rest of his gifts and ate too much pizza, Amanda tossed the book into Dirk’s lap and held her hands out.
“Alright, Mr. Dirk Gently Palm Detective, let’s see what you got.” Dirk sputtered a moment before the curious glint sparkled in his eyes and he cracked open the pages. Amanda’s took a while to read as he tried to figure out the book, but Amanda sat quietly smiling as Dirk flipped through the pages and ran his fingers all over her hands. She ended up quite satisfied with his (mostly embellished) report on her future. Todd, on the other hand (pun intended), was suspicious that any of Dirk’s predictions were actually things that he learned to read from that book, particularly because he was pretty sure palm reading wasn’t specific enough to tell you that you’re going to adopt a hedgehog, or find a box of jeans under a bridge in three weeks. As soon as he finished reading Amanda’s palms, the rest of the Rowdy Three, apart from Martin, leapt up, racing towards Dirk and thrusting their hands out in front of him, and excitedly yelling questions about the free clothes they would fine. Dirk flinched back, an instinct from their more… vampiry days, despite not having been their meal for a while now, but then relaxed again, his soft smile returning.
“Okay, okay, wait your turns,” Dirk said with a chiding laugh. Todd watched as he took Vogel’s hands in his. His ears seemed to tune out Dirk’s words, his attention preferring to focus on the careful ministrations of Dirk’s slender fingers, the way his fingertips brushed gently over their skin, the delicate way he leaned over the book and flipped through the pages, his forehead wrinkling as he lost himself in his swirling thoughts. It was one of Todd’s favorite Dirk looks. Todd tried to ignore the pit in his chest, the desperate hunger that was spiking in his stomach at the sight of Dirk giving his touches away so freely. Dirk glanced over, catching Todd’s yearning stare. He smiled and the edges of his eyes crinkled and Todd lost his train of thought, blushing and smiling back. Bea (the rainbow monster from Wendimoor, who was sort of domesticated now), laid across the back of the couch directly behind Dirk, her head resting on the top of the cushions as she watched Dirk continued to talk over Cross’ hands, attempting to explain what the head line means. Todd laughed under his breath as Dirk’s predictions became simpler and simpler as he went through the rest of the Rowdy Three. He got to Bea who was happy just to have her “bibbit” hold her hands, and her palm reading was a very simple, “you’re going to get a cookie,” and he handed her a cookie off the tray on the coffee table, which she snatched away and hopped off the couch to rejoin the rest of the Rowdies on the floor.
“Alright, anyone else?” Dirk said looking up, straight over at Todd’s now empty seat. He frowned, noticing Todd through the doorway to the kitchen, washing up a couple dishes. Tina hopped up from the floor, slightly giggly and curled up on the couch next to Dirk.
“Me, me, me!” She said holding out her hands. “Where should I put my feet?” Dirk’s eyebrows furrowed and he shook his head.
“Um, it doesn’t matter, Tina. I just need your hands.” Tina nodded seriously.
“Alright, I’ll put them on the floor.” Dirk smiled, raising an eyebrow up, and shook his head again, taking Tina’s hand in his just as Todd walked back out of the kitchen. Dirk noticed he seemed distracted, his eyes pointedly not looking over at him, and wondered if he may have done something wrong. Dirk shook his head, fighting the instinct to blame himself for everything, and resolving to ask Todd about it later instead. He returned his focus to Tina, and on reading the lines on Tina’s hands. When he finished, Tina shoved Farah over, then Sherlock; Amanda convinced Martin (and if Dirk’s hands shook a little more than usual reading the intimidating Rowdy leader’s hands, nobody mentioned it; and even Mona popped up near the end of the party for her palm reading, though she was shaped as an orangutan, so Dirk isn’t really sure if they use the same book. She seemed happy with her reading in any case, and shifted into a small black cat before wandering out of sight. He finished her reading, and sighed, dropping his head back into the couch cushions.
“That’s it, right? I think I might be all hand readed out.” He flopped the paperback book onto the coffee table and yawned. Half the Rowdies were asleep curled together on the floor, Farah yawned from the other end of the couch, batting away Tina’s wandering hands from where she was pestering her on the floor, and Sherlock was fighting heavy eyelids from where he sat in the armchair. But someone was missing. Dirk looked around the room, peering through the doorway to the dark kitchen.
“Where’d Todd get off to?” Dirk asked, trying to sound casual. He didn’t really like when Todd went off by himself, he knew he was mostly okay, usually, but Todd’s stories about Amanda’s attacks had gotten him a bit paranoid about him drowning in the bathroom without Dirk noticing.
“Probably went to the bathroom,” Amanda said with a yawn from the pile of cuddled Rowdy bodies on the floor. She pushed herself up, smacking their shoulders, and waking up the dozing leather clad men. “Well, you’ll have to let us know if he has any weird stuff too, especially anything I can tease him about-“she winked- “We gotta get going, early morning tomorrow.” Dirk smiled and nodded, pulling Amanda into a hug.
“I’m glad you were able to make it.” Amanda waved a hand and punched his shoulder, smiling.
“Of course, dude. It’s your birthday. It needed to be celebrated.” She gave him a pointed look. “And listen, we love you. You ever need a break from my brother, you let me know. That road trip invite doesn’t expire.” Dirk smiled sincerely, pulling Amanda into another quick hug which turned into a dogpile of slightly smelly, leather clad Rowdy bodies surrounding him.
“You’re British, but you’re Drummer’s friend so we like you!” Cross shouted way too loud right in Dirk’s ear.
“It’s your birthday!” Vogel added from somewhere underneath them.
“Alright, let’s go boys.” Martin slapped Dirk across the back, breaking up the hugging and started walking to the door, the rest following after him. Todd walked out of the hallway from the bathroom as they reached the door. Amanda gave him a look before she rolled her eyes and pulled him into a hug.
“See you, loser.” Todd laughed, and pulled her tighter.
“Love you too. Be careful… or whatever.” Amanda broke apart from him and gave him a finger gun before following the Rowdies out the door.
“We’re gonna head out too. Long drive back to Bergsberg tomorrow.” Sherlock said, helping Tina up from the floor. Tina grappled Dirk into a tight hug…or tackle… and they both hugged him and told him another happy birthday before heading to the door too, giving Todd a pat on the back as they walked past.
“I’m going to walk them out. I’ll see you at the office tomorrow?” Farah pointed at Todd, who nodded reluctantly. “Good. Okay. Happy birthday, Dirk.” She pursed her lips and then gave Dirk an awkward side hug, nod, and pat on the shoulder. Dirk smiled. Todd shut the door behind her as she left, and the apartment was suddenly very quiet. Todd walked back over to the couch dropping down onto the cushions with a big, tired sigh. Dirk followed suit, dropping down, leaving just a few inches between their legs. Dirk glanced around the room.
“Did you see where Mona disappeared to?” Todd sighed and shrugged.
“I’m pretty sure I saw a black cat sneaking into your room again. I’d guess she’s hiding under your blanket again,” Todd said and raised his eyebrows. Dirk smiled and laughed under his breath.
“Thanks for the warning. Don’t need anymore surprised Mona cat scratches.” Todd huffed a laugh in response, but didn’t say anything. Dirk studied his face for a moment before reaching out and grabbing his hands. Todd jerked back slightly, but didn’t pull his hands out of his loose grip.
“I never got to do yours. You kept disappearing all night.” Todd shrugged, watching as Dirk grabbed the book off the coffee table, one hand still wrapped around Todd’s palm.
“I wasn’t disappearing. I just needed the bathroom,” Todd knew he sounded less casual than he hoped, and he knew Dirk noticed, but he hoped that maybe Dirk wouldn’t-
“Is something going on? You’re acting weird.” Todd laughed. Mostly at the fact that Dirk could sometimes be so completely oblivious and yet at other times way too perceptive. Dirk frowned. “It wasn’t… I didn’t do any-“ Todd quickly shook his head.
“No. You didn’t do anything. I’m fine.” Dirk raised his eyebrows. “I promise, I’m fine. Just a little tired. Read my hands and it’ll tell you how fine I am.” Todd shook his head quickly. “I don’t mean like how fine I am as in like… attractive, just… like I am… okay. Mostly.” Dirk smiled and his eyebrows quirked upwards, amused.
“Okay, you weirdo, I don’t think that’s how this works, but I’ll see if there’s a line for that.” He laughed, his eyes crinkling at the corners again, and sighed. His fingers started to brush softly over Todd’s hands, running over the creases in his palms. Todd had to keep from gasping, and he wondered with fear if Dirk could feel the way his pulse had jumped in his veins when his fingers had started moving. Dirk’s smile faded into something… something else. Focused and intense. His thumbs caressed across the crease across from Todd’s thumb.
“This one is the lifeline. The book says it’s not great for beginners to talk about this one too much. Don’t want you thinking you’re going to die soon or something.” Dirk leaned forward and Todd could feel the heat of his breath wafting over his palm. Dirk’s index finger traced the line again sending tingling pulses through Todd’s nerves. He twitched and Dirk looked up at him in surprise and apology.
“Sorry, it’s a little ticklish,” Todd said, slightly breathless. He hoped he wasn’t blushing. Dirk just smiled and turned back to his hand.
“It looks pretty long to me, so I think you’re probably alright.” He moved his fingers slightly over to the crease next to the life line, skittering so lightly, like the feet of a butterfly, that Todd suspected he was doing it just to torture him.
“What’s that one?” Dirk ran his finger down the line, and Todd’s breath hitched in his throat.
“The fate line,” Dirk responded huskily, and turned his head towards Todd, looking up at him through his eyelashes. “It looks like it’s pretty deep, means that your life is currently greatly influenced by external circumstances.” Todd smiled and rolled his eyes.
“Hmm. Imagine that.” Dirk smiled and passed over to the next line, a smaller crease at the edge of his palm.
“This one is called the sun line. It’s supposed to indicate your public image, your legacy and fame.” Todd pulled his hand closer to his face, nearly dragging Dirk with it. He gasped in surprise and looked up at Todd.
“Oh, does it say the Mexican Funeral is getting back together? I knew we were going to make it big someday,” Todd said jokingly, trying to cut some of tension in the air. Dirk rolled his eyes and pulled Todd’s hand back to where it was, laughing and sending another wave of warm air over Todd’s hand. His fingers rubbed across Todd’s palm absently.
“I don’t know about that, but I think it’s a good one. You’ll probably be successful… in something.” Todd barked out a laugh.
“Wow! Thanks for the confidence.” Dirk sat back up and shook his head grinning.
“You wanted me to read your palms, I’m just saying what I see.” Todd’s forehead wrinkled and he cocked his head.
“Did I? I seem to remember you grabbing my hands without me asking.” Dirk raised an eyebrow and shrugged. He dramatically dropped Todd’s hand letting it fall to the couch cushion. Todd winced at the loss of Dirk’s fingers on his hand.
“Okay, fine.” He said and turned toward the television. “I don’t have to read it.” Dirk sat quietly, his eyes flicking over at Todd periodically until Todd sighed and rolled his eyes, holding his hand out again.
“Okay. Dirk, would you please finish reading my palm.” Dirk glanced over at him, hesitating before he smiled and nodded.
“Well, if you insist.” Todd rolled his eyes, but smiled softly.
“What’s the next line?” Dirk pressed over a longer line that crossed diagonally near the top of Todd’s palm. He followed the waves of the line, and then looked up at Todd.
“This one is called the head line. It’s supposed to show your intellect, and the pursuits that you learn about. Yours seems pretty long, which means you learn about a lot of different things-“
“Sure, I mean last week I had to become an expert in rat care, and the week before we were investigating corruption at the YMCA. I’d say I learn about a lot of things…” Todd raised his eyebrows and rolled his eyes.
“AND,” he cut back in, emphasizing Todd’s interruption, “the depth mean how deeply you learn about things, and it looks… not that deep…” Dirk said and smiled up at Todd, who frowned and shrugged.
“Sure, well, I mean I have Google, I don’t need to be an expert in things.” Dirk shook his head mockingly, and patted Todd’s hand.
“No, of course you don’t,” he said in a condescending tone. Todd pulled at his hand, still caught in Dirk’s grip.
“Great, are we finished? Was that the last one?” Dirk held tighter.
“Not quite, there’s one more.” Dirk looked up at Todd, the mocking expression now replaced with that same intense look from before. “The heart line.” Todd felt his chest tighten, now worried about what his traitorous hands might be able to tell Dirk. If he could somehow read what he had been feeling. That’s stupid though because this is all fake nonsense… but he also thought Dirk was fake nonsense, so… He fought against his rapidly beating heart and watched as Dirk studied carefully over the lines on his palm. His eyebrows furrowed together creating little rippled wrinkles on his forehead. After what seemed like forever, Dirk sat up and sighed, looking conflicted and nervous. He nodded. Todd raised his eyebrows.
“And? What did it say?”
“It says nothing?” Todd held up his hand, staring at the mess of lines and wondering what Dirk saw that made him say that. Dirk pulled his hand down away from his face and shrugged.
“I don’t know. It’s all nonsense, you know? Maybe you’ll live happily ever after, maybe you won’t. I don’t know what it means.” Todd frowned, studying the strange look on Dirk’s face.
“I don’t understand. You read everyone else tonight, all those other lines on my hand… why…” He didn’t want to read into anything. Dirk did weird things for Dirk reasons, not because… “Why not this line?” Dirk frowned and shrugged. Todd could see a soft pink flush rising on his cheeks, and the tightness in his chest seemed to return again, but for a new reason. A more hopeful reason. Todd fought back a smile.
“It doesn’t matter.” Dirk started to stand up to leave the room, but Todd grabbed his hand. Dirk looked at him confused, and almost scared, but he sat back down.
“I think it’s because you’re just not as good as me at reading palms,” Todd smiled, enjoying the feeling of running his hands over Dirk’s palms, the feeling of Dirk’s hand’s twitching slightly under his delicate touches.
“What are you talking about?” Todd shushed him and smiled.
“My turn.” He ran over the first line on Dirk’s hand. “The life line. Easy, you’re going to have a long and happy life. Boom. Done. Next,” he passed across to the next line. “The fate line, you’re going to have good things happen to you even though it gets crazy sometimes. Boom, next. Whatever this line was, I don’t remember, don’t tell me, but it means, you’re amazing and do good things, boom. Next, the… uh…” Dirk pointed down at the book on the couch, and Todd quickly read the line upside down. “Head line, yes, I remembered that myself, thanks. This one says you’re very smart and capable about a lot of things.” Dirk was smiling now, his face much pinker than before, watching Todd raptly, wondering what was coming next. Todd paused, his breath catching, as his fingers crossed over the last line.
“Todd? What about… what about the last one? What about the heart line?” Dirk’s voice was nervous, and hesitant. His hand started to pull away at Todd’s silence. Todd squeezed his eyes shut and held his breath for just a second.
Todd dropped Dirk’s hand, quickly moving his hand to Dirk’s cheek and stroking over the soft blush that colored his face. Dirk’s surprised expression softened and the crinkles returned to the edges of his eyes, which Todd took as permission. They both leaned forward, synchronized with each other’s movements and their lips met in the center, as gentle and delicate as their fingers had been passing over each other palms. The softness gave way, replaced with the reverent exploration of each other’s lips, a hesitant brush of tongue, hands joining to touch skin and hair and, then they pulled apart, breathless and smiling. Dirk swallowed thickly, and Todd smoothed the mussed hair sticking up on top of his head.
“So, uh,” Dirk started still catching his breath. “What did it say?” Todd grinned leaning in again, only to stop just an inch away from Dirk’s lips.
“I can repeat myself, if you’d like?” Todd said, his words wafting over Dirk’s mouth. Dirk smiled.
“Oh, yes, please,” he said moving in the last inch. As they kissed, Todd slipped his hand into Dirk’s smiling into Dirk’s lips as his fingers started to move softly over Todd’s palm, tickling over his skin. He decided he didn’t mind the palm reading so much after all.
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angel-tears15 · 3 months ago
beating hearts | d.m. | chapter 18
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chapter 18: jealousy is a two faced b¡tch
pairing: draco malfoy x fem! reader
summary: Y/N a surgical intern for the teaching hospital- Toronto General- and has found herself in a love triangle of sorts; with the attendings of neurosurgery, general surgery and PEDs surgery all fighting for her affection. But who will she choose? With an already chaotic life filled with 48 hour shifts, patients with mystery-case illnesses, friend drama and now boy troubles, will she be able to survive her internship at Toronto General?
warnings: swearing, heavy drinking, ... 
A/N: so yes, this series is slowly coming to an end :( but it has been an absolute roller coaster writing this- and i loved every single moment of this; thankfully, i got another idea for another series! so be sure to keep an eye out for the new series ‘forbidden love’ sometime in the near future!! :)
read previous chapters here!
beating hearts: table of contents 
As usual, GIFs aren’t mine, full credit to their owners :))
Ron, Harry, Draco and your older brother Matt clinked their shot glasses together, before downing them quickly.
Harry gagged slightly at the liquid that burned his neck, while Ron laughed at his reaction.
“Come on Harry! We’re not on call tonight, and we’re here to celebrate Draco’s last night as a single man!” Ron shouts loudly as the music of the bar was pounding in the background.
“To Draco and Y/N!” Harry shouts over the music again, raising his filled glass up, and then to his mouth.
Draco simply laughed at Harry’s sour face.
“Ah come on Potter! We have a long night ahead of us, you might as well settle in!” he shouts over the table.
“Bartender, another round of shots” Matt says loudly to the bartender, which he then simply nods before grabbing the liquor behind him, and pouring into shot glasses.
“How does it feel mate?” Ron asks, popping a few peanuts into his mouth.
“What do you mean?” Draco asks, not really clear about what his friend was asking.
“You know; how did you know she was the one you wanted to spend the rest of your life with?...”
“Ah- having deep thoughts about Granger no?” Draco asks, wiggling his eyebrows teasingly.
“What- No!- No! She’s great and all-“ Ron gets instantly defensive.
“Relax man, just tell her how you feel- I’m more than sure that she feels the same” Harry responds, looking into his glass, missing the clear liquid that was there moments ago. “Hey Barry- can I get a scotch on the rocks?”
“You got it Potter” Barry answers, grabbing a clean glass and filling it with a few ice cubes and scotch.
“How’d you even get reservations here? The waiting list is apparently a year long” Matt asks Harry, as he also finishes his drink.
“I don’t know- Ginny apparently has connections with the club owner and got us a table” Harry responds.
“Wait- Ginny- My sister Ginny has connections with one of the most popular clubs in all of the GTA? Since when?” Ron asks in disbelief, still thinking of his younger sister as an innocent girl.
“I don’t know mate- why don’t you ask her” Harry responds lazily, already have drunk one to many drinks.
“Anyways! Let’s just enjoy ourselves right?” Draco states loudly, trying to diffuse the tension between his friends.
“Malfoy’s right- BARRY ANOTHER ROUND!” Ron responds quickly.
As they all finished their drinks again, they made their way onto the dance floor, the room dark except for the neon lights that light up the room in different colours.
The music was pounding loudly in their ears, and the group of drunk and sweaty people on the dance floor, only made them want to join in even more.
“Malfoy- you cheat on her- today or ever, I will make sure to kill you and hide the body” Matt whispers into Draco’s ear.
Kinda joking- kinda not.
“Y/L/N- you don’t have to worry about that- she’s the only one that I want” Draco responds to Matt’s threat.
“Now, just because we couldn’t get the night off, doesn’t mean that we also don’t get to party!” Hermionie exclaims excitedly, as you and Ginny were huddled in the resident lounge.
“You bring champagne or something?” Ginny asks, mentally wishing it was alcohol.
“We can’t drink; we’re on call- and I’m pregnant” you respond.
“No! It’s something better than alcohol!”
“Now that can’t be true” Ginny whispers into your ear, causing you to laugh.
“Y/N! Because today is your special night, we have a little present for you!!”
Ginny stands up from the couch, as if on cue, and grabs a patient binder from her locker.
She glanced over to ‘Mionie excitedly, before both handed you the chart.
“Great.. more work!” you answer sarcastically, as you look over the information inside of the binder.
The other two remain silent, and just keep glancing at each other, waiting for you to catch onto what they were talking about.
“No way... you guys got me a cardiac surgery?!” you respond in disbelief, reading over and over the patient work up.
“We got you a surgery!!” they both answers, practically in sync with each other.
“And you’re the lead resident!” Hermionie says.
“Also- it starts in about two hours, so I’d start studying for it, like now” Ginny adds on, motioning to the clock on the wall.
You squealed excitedly and hugged them both- “Best. Wedding. Present. Ever!!” you let out loudly, not being able to contain your excitement. “Gotta run! I’ll see you guys later!” you shout as you run out of the room and find the library, to make sure you’re all studied-up for the surgery.
“Ten blade please” you say confidently as you stretch out your arm for the surgical nurse to hand you the surgical instrument.
“Right away Doctor” she responds, as she hands you your scalpel, and a few other instruments that you would need momentarily.
As you held the skin of the patient taut with one hand, and with a scalpel in the other, you made a precise incision in the patients chest.
“Now breaking the sternum; rib spreaders please”
“Very well done Dr. Y/L/N” the head of cardio said as he looked over at your work.
“Thank you Doctor”
From start to finish, you preformed about 60% of the surgery, Dr. Roger Davies preforming some parts himself, since you were barely becoming a second year resident.
The rush and high that you felt throughout the surgery was something that you couldn’t possibly feel anywhere else.
Except when you got a voice message from Draco.
‘Y/N! My love!
I promise- I am not drunk- well maybe a bit
I love you so bloody much- I can’t wait to see your angelic face tomorrow!
At least one of you was having fun in the ‘traditional’ bachelor party type-of-way.
It wasn’t until then did you realize that it was almost 3AM; ‘how time flies when you’re having fun’
Your shift finished early today, Dumbledore giving you off the last 4 hours of your night shift, saying how you deserve the break.
You made sure to finish off your post-up notes on your last surgery and other patient notes before you left the hospital.
“Hey Y/N! We’ll be at your place around 11 for brunch?” Ginny asked as she also multi-tasked, writing some notes down in a patient’s chart.
“Yeah sounds great! And you guys were able to pick up your dresses and everything right?” you answered, looking up from your own chart.
“Yeah! All is ready for tomorrow!” she replied cheerfully, and you handed the binder to a nurse nearby, giving Ginny a quick hug and goodbye.
As you got in your car, you began to drive back to your apartment, the excitement inside of you barely able to be kept inside as you drove home.
Draco’s P.O.V.
I am not tipsy.
At least that’s what I thought.
It wasn’t until Ron and Harry were stumbling around my building, trying to help me find my keys did we realize how drunk we all actually were.
Thankfully enough, Barry had realized how intoxicated we had become, and called a taxi before one thing lead to another.
“Aha! The spare key was under the potted plant!” Matt exclaims excitedly, showing us the key.
Smiling goofily, he handed me the key, but missing my stretched out hand, and dropping it on the floor instead.
“Matt- you bloody idiot!” Ron shouted in my ear.
“Weasley- shut up” I whispered back.
Potter is a kind drunk- how nice.
He was quiet and smiley- a bit strange if you asked me.
As I finally got the door open, it swung open quickly, and let out a loud ‘bang’ as it hit the wall.
“Anyways lads- I’ll see you tomorrow!”
“To Y/N and Draco!” they all shouted completely out of sync, and nearly falling onto of each other.
They left, relying on each other for support- the immense hangover that we would have tomorrow would not be fun.
Somewhere in my brilliant drunk-state, I had thought that perhaps sobering up a bit might help with tomorrow.
Which is where I found myself now.
Fourth cup of black coffee, and waiting for my pizza to arrive.
As I lazily browsed through the movies on Netflix, someone knocked on my door.
‘Pizza; perfect timing!’ I had thought before I saw the person on the other side of the door.
“Well- I hope you shower before the wedding tomorrow- you reek Draco” she says, scrunching up her nose at my appearance. “The stench is coming out of your pores”
I rolled my eyes. “What the hell do you want now Astoria?”
Ah of course; of all days that I my cheating ex-fiancée had to come and see me, it was the night before my wedding.
‘What a lovely surprise’ I thought.
“Can I come in?”
“Well you’re already halfway through the door” I mumbled sarcastically as she walked through the doorway, taking in my wall decor.
I shut the door behind her- praying that this ‘visit’ would be fast. But knowing Astoria’s perfect timing, she’ll be here for hours.
“How you’ve been Dray?”
“Cut the crap Astoria- what do you want?” I ask annoyed, as I went to the kitchen, checking on the kettle.
“Don’t; I don’t care why you’re here; if you think that somehow you can break up Y/N and I the night before our wedding- you’ve lost your fucking mind”
“Fine; I’ll get right to it” she answers sharply, taking a seat on the barstool.
“Wow- what a first” I replied mockingly, just wanting her out of my hair as fast as possible.
“There’s no easy way to say this-“
“Greengrass I swear to god if you don’t spit it out-“ I begin, shaking my head, I could literally care less about the small talk.
“I’m pregnant”
I stopped reaching for a mug.
I couldn’t even move.
‘Did she actually say what I thought she said?’
“I’m sorry- but it sounded as if you said that you’re pregnant?” I responded slowly, laughing at my response- as if it was a joke.
“Draco- I’m being honest with you. I’m pregnant- and it’s yours”
I couldn’t even meet her eyes.
How could this be happening?
“You’re lying”
Yes I know. I’m not proud of that answer either. But what else are you supposed to say when your ex comes knocking on your door saying: ‘surprise! I’m pregnant and you’re the daddy!’ ?!
“I knew you’d say that; here’s the latest ultrasound- it’s a girl Dray” she replies, sliding a sonogram across the kitchen counter.
I still couldn’t look at her.
I just reached out for the image.
She was telling the truth. The kid was right there.
Ten toes, ten fingers- she’s perfect.
“Now- I know that you’re with Y/N, and the last thing I want is to break you guys up but-“
“Astoria shut up; you’d love to see us break up, don’t act coy with me” I cut her off immediately as soon as I hear the bullshit of an excuse come out of her mouth.
“Fine. I tried being civil”
“What do you want from me? You being here, you’re obviously here for something- what money? A raise? A job here in Toronto?!” I asked angrily.
“Ten million; that’s my price to walk away from this” she says coldly.
“You know I don’t have that kind of money right now- you’re a lunatic”
“I don’t care- ask Narcissa for a loan for all I care- but I want my fucking money; if my kid can’t have her dad, she might as well have his money” she answers with venom dripping off of her tongue, as she got up and opened the front door.
“You have less than 12 hours to give me my money- after that, you’ll see the lengths I’ll go to ruin you”
“GET OUT” I shouted, not caring how late it was, and how my neighbours would complain the next day, and threw the closest thing to me to the wall behind her.
She ducked immediately, but then got up slowly, eyes narrowing as she spoke to me. “I’d start gathering my money now if I were you” she said, barely above a whisper, as she slammed the door behind her.
‘What had I gotten myself into now?’
taglist: @sycathorn-slush​ @itcastimagines​ @dracomalfoyreader​
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empfics · 3 months ago
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Viktor Vektor x Reader
CH1 . CH2 . CH3
Job goes smooth, no thanks to V. Sometimes you wonder if she isn’t a lot younger than she realizes, in maturity if nothing else. She went in guns blazing as always, ruining any chance at making things easy via a stealthier route.
Granted, you went through a similar phase, so you can’t hold it against her for too long – can only hope she outgrows it before it gets her hurt, or killed.
You’ve had to save her ass on more than one occasion, becoming all too frequent an occurrence for your liking… You got no problem helping her, of course, but she almost seems to blindly throw herself into danger knowing someone will be there to catch her and clean up afterwards.
She needs some sense knocked into her, but you don’t want her to learn the hard way, not if she doesn’t have to. Still, somethin’s gotta change, for both of your sake.
Jackie had recommended a different gym for you to try out, knowing it to be your release, seeing it in your eyes the whole drive home that you needed to blow off some steam or else you might lash out at V. Being cooped up together at home would do no good for either of you, she needed a nap and you needed to exhaust yourself whether it be with weights or a punching bag.
Gigs were exhausting in their own way, but V had you wound tight, her incessant rambling about the next gig while having barely survived this one thanks to your quick reflexes coming to the rescue – yet again… it drove you up the wall the whole way home.
You practically flew out of the car, slamming the door shut behind you and darting up the stairs, taking them 2 at a time to your apartment. Jackie had laughed, knowing all too well your need to be alone as he talked with V, distracting her enough for you to duck out behind them, gym bag in hand.
A quick smile is all you have time to offer him, you’ll thank him properly later. Sometimes you think he knows you better than V does…
Or maybe V was just too close to the issue at hand, your disagreement on how to manage certain situations and vastly different end goals leading to these spats. You didn’t like arguing, preferring to wait until you cooled down before approaching things more civil, maybe you’ll feel up to talking to her later tonight. For now, she seems oblivious, and it’s probably best to keep it that way.
Jackie was right, the gym is pretty nice, more tailored to sparring than weightlifting, but it’s a good change of pace from your usual spot. New atmosphere does you good from time to time, mixing things up, keeping it fresh. Could turn out to be your new favorite based on first impression, but you’d know more by the end of your session.
You shoot a quick message to Jackie letting him know you’d found it, that you think he was right in telling you about it, then begin wrapping your hands. Just from glancing around briefly you can tell no one really seems the nosy type here, all keeping to their own workout rather than chatting for the sake of conversation – definitely your preference, you’d rather focus on the training than worry about some rando talking your ear off.
Vik POV:
“Hey Vik?” Misty leans around the corner, her weight along the doorframe, still half out of view, “you done for the day?”
“Yeah,” I nod over to her, glancing up only briefly before returning to tinkering with my glove, damn thing had been giving me problems all day today, “you can head out if you need to, I’ll lock up for the day.”
“Actually, I was thinking…” she shifts, taking a few steps in, revealing her other arm to be carrying my training bag which she drops on the table in front of me, “be good for you to get out, let off some steam, yeah?”
“Been a long day, Misty, don’t know if-“
“You’ve been overworking yourself, Vik,” she nudges my shoulder gently, “need to get outta this office, go do something you enjoy. Besides, Jackie found a new little gym he thinks you’ll enjoy. It’s right up the street.”
I sigh and unlatch the glove, slipping it off and setting it aside to reluctantly hold my hands up in defeat, “fine, I’ll go check it out, but don’t hang around finishing up paperwork alright? I’ll get that shit done tomorrow, you go home and enjoy yourself too.”
“Yeah, yeah,” she smiles softly, crossing her arms as she watches me rummage through my bag, making sure I’ve got everything, “oh, by the way, he told the girls about it too.”
My chest tightens more than I’d like to admit, just the mention of her name making my stomach summersault. The fuck is wrong with me.
“Jackie said she just got there a few minutes ago, can probably catch her if you hurry,” her smile is too big, something behind those eyes of hers, always too knowing of everything goin’ on around her. Damn you Misty.
“Why’s that matter?”
“Oh, no reason,” she shrugs, still grinning, “just noticed you two getting along pretty well, thought you might see about training with her is all. Jackie says she’s pretty good.”
“Uh huh,” I narrow my eyes slightly, fiddling with the straps of my bag before shaking my head and shouldering it, waving a finger at her as I move towards the door, “don’t go tryin’ anything, Misty. Got enough to worry about around here without you tryin’a play at somethin’, hear me?”
She rolls her eyes, following me out the door to lock everything up, “don’t worry, Vik. I only got your best interest at heart, you should know that by now.”
“Yeah, doesn’t mean you aren’t up to somethin’ though,” I hold the outside door open for her, locking it after she passes through, giving her one last warning glance, “can feel something cookin’ in that brain of yours, don’t even think about it.”
She giggles and situates her backpack, glancing around her and taking a deep breath, “gotta slow down and enjoy life, Vik. See the beauty of what’s right in front of you, take a few chances, recognize the opportunities presenting themselves, ya know?”
I shake my head and move past her, patting her shoulder affectionately, “whatever you say, Misty. Lemme know you make it home safe, got it?”
“Will do, Vik. And tell her I said hi, yeah?”
I throw a thumbs up over my shoulder, then wave my hand as I continue on, following her directions to the little spot this gym is supposed to be at.
It’s easy enough to find, seems well put together. Decent little place, gotta say. Got a good vibe to it, everyone mindin’ their own business, no one seeming too caught up in pointless conversation, all seeming to be here to train – good vibe to have in a place like this.
I find the locker room and change clothes, feeling a bit odd out of my work attire, having been working so much lately. Strange, I used to live in a tank and shorts, feels good – hadn’t realized how long it had been since I was really able to just relax and get a good session in.
Maybe Misty was right. Might need to take a little more time for myself, get out and do things I enjoy again. The clinic is doing well enough, might be able to hire someone to help out with the paperwork. Misty does enough as it is, and I gotta start getting more sleep… I’ll talk to her about it tomorrow, get her to help look around, start some interviews maybe.
Walking out onto the floor feels great. I’d been tired just a few minutes ago, but now the world seems bright, fresh, alive… I feel a genuine smirk tug along my cheeks, getting to work wrapping my hands as I glance around.
My eyes land on her almost instantly, my heart jumping up into my throat.
She’s not in anything revealing too much skin, a pair of those tight pants the girls wear these days that sit high on their waist, a generic sports bra, not too uncommon a sight. But damn… does it hug her curves and leave little to the imagination.
I can’t help but stare, using every ounce of will power in my body to tear my eyes from her figure, trying to look anywhere but directly at her. Unfortunately, that doesn’t seem to help, being that the gym is mostly filled with other men, all seeming to be equally distracted by her.
It’s not my place, don’t have any right, but I find myself getting jealous anyway. Maybe territorial would be a better word?
My jaw clenches watching one guy in particular size her up like a dog eyeing a steak left out in the open.
He steps forward, making his move, drawing her attention enough for her to pause what she’s doing and give him the opportunity to strike up conversation. She doesn’t seem interested, bringing the smirk back to my face.
Good, now send him on his way.
I wait for him to tuck tail and retreat, but he doesn’t seem to take the hint. Can’t hear what they’re saying really, but I can tell she’s uncomfortable, getting agitated even. Guy just won’t leave her alone.
He steps in closer, grazing her arm with one of his hands like he’s admiring her ink there, but fucker is just clearly using it as an excuse. I can tell as much from here.
My jaw clenches again as I pop my knuckles, knowing it’s not my place but itching to rock this guy’s jaw. She’d probably be mad, seems the type that can handle herself.
But, I can’t help myself… my legs carrying me over even as I will myself to stay out of it.
“Hey,” I act surprised to see her, as if just now noticing her presence, pulling her in for a big hug and feeling her wrap her arms tight up around my neck, fuck… the way she presses her body against mine just…. Goddamn… “didn’t know you were already here?”
“Yeah, just got back, figured I’d come check out the new place Jackie was on about,” she smiles broadly, both of us entirely ignoring the third wheel who seems entirely clueless, “you the one that showed him?”
“No, actually,” I shake my head, realizing one of my hands was still at her hip and one of her arms was still up along my chest, she must really want me to stay, get this guy to leave her alone, and I’m all too happy to oblige, “Misty told me about it, practically shoved me out the door, told me I work too hard. Can you believe that?”
“You?” she raises her brows, grin broadening, “a workaholic? Well, that’s just blasphemy.”
I feel a chuckle rumble in my chest, “that’s what I said!”
“So,” Mr. Third Wheel interrupts, stepping in closer, “gonna introduce me to your friend here?”
“Oh,” she stiffens a bit, her arm sliding up to hook along the back of my neck even though it means pressing the side of her body into mine, almost forcing me to rest my hand at the small of her back, “this is Vik, and uh…” she chews at her lip, making a show of forgetting the guy’s name as she points to him.
I bite back my smirk, arm moving further around her waist to grip her close, surely reading as possessive to the other guy as his eyes narrow at me.
“Max,” he grumbles, glancing between the two of us now, but still not retreating.
She rests her hand along my chest, surely able to feel my heart pounding. I can only hope she doesn’t read too much into it, we’re in a gym after all.
“Good to meet ya, Max,” I offer my free hand to him, which he seems reluctant to take, giving him a harder squeeze than was probably necessary as I shake it in introduction, “my girl here keepin’ outta trouble?”
“Oh, uh,” he pulls his hand back, flexing it slightly, maybe I squeezed a little too hard… “I was just offering a few pointers.”
“I appreciate that,” I smirk down at her before meeting his eyes again, “maybe you’ll keep an eye out for her if she’s ever here without me? Last gym we went to kicked us out when she broke some asshole’s jaw for tryin’a grope her.”
He stiffens and takes a subtle step back, “no shit? Well, uh, I’ll let you get back to it, I uh-“
“Good meeting ya, Max,” she smiles softly, still hanging around my neck until he walks outta view and sighing a breath of relief, “fuck. Thanks, Vik,” she untangles from me, leaving my side feeling cold and empty, “sorry to hang all over you like that, glad you caught on though, that guy was a fuckin’ creep.”
“Glad to help,” I rub a hand along the back of my head and clear my throat, trying to ignore how good her waist felt wrapped in my arms, “so, uh, since we’re both here. Maybe wanna train together?”
Her grin broadens, “sure you can’t read minds? I was just about to ask you the same thing.”
Fuck if I could read minds this shit would be a lot easier…
I chuckle and shake my head, “no, not sure I’d want that anyway, ‘specially not with how that guy was lookin’ at you.”
“Fair enough, guy was a weirdo for sure.”
“Sorry it took me so long to come over,” I motion over to one of the empty rings, walking along with her, “wasn’t sure if I’d be interrupting anything, hard to tell if you were into it or annoyed at first.”
She all but scoffs, her nose scrunching a bit making her even cuter, “hell no, even if he wasn’t a creep he’s a little too young for my taste.”
“Too young?” I feel my brow shoot up, casting a sideways glance as I hold the ropes for her to duck under, “seemed to be same age as you?”
“Exactly,” she shrugs, motioning her hand vaguely without looking back at me, “prefer ‘em a little older, tend to be a little less dumb that way. Life experience and all.”
Fucking hell, why is she telling me she likes older men?
Is this a hint or am I just having a real stroke this time.
Fuck, my heart feels like it’s gonna rip outta my chest at any second…
“Really?” I watch her situate her gloves, waiting until she turns to face me to speak up again, “you don’t seem the type.”
Her cheeks flush pink, “the type to what, Vik? Prefer older men?”
I clear my throat uncomfortably and pull on my own gloves, using the opportunity to drop my eyes for a sec, “well, uh… yeah. That.”
She chuckles, sounding confident, like a little fuckin’ minx, drawing my eyes back to hers instantly and finding her smirking all casual like, “got a lot to learn about me then, doc.”
Yeah, reading minds would come in really fucking handy right now.
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siancore · 3 months ago
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Title: Cupcakes and Compromise 
Pairing: Carol Danvers x Maria Rambeau 
Square Filled: Nightmares
Content: PTSD; Love Scene 
Words: 2,008
AO3 Link
Carol’s been gone for three months, and back just a week into her one month of leave. A week is not much time in the grander scheme of things, but the small moments are what she cherishes. Mundane domestic things are special to her. Not so much the fighting off threats and saving the universe: That’s a job she does gladly to protect those she loves. To protect Maria and Monica.
She has seen things other people can only dream of. Things that others have only seen in their nightmares, but when she is home, in their small house in Louisiana, none of the other stuff matters. All she can focus on is what’s right in front of her.
Presently, she is focused on the soft moans escaping Maria’s lips. Focused on the warmth that is enveloping her fingers as she curls them deftly. As sweat drips from her heated skin and mingles with Maria’s. As their lips come together. As their breathing quickens. As they whisper one another’s names in the dimly lit room while their pleasure washes over them. As they find their sweet release. As they lay together, sated and happy, a tangle of glistening limbs tethered to one another by the persistent thrumming of their hearts.
Maria rests her head on Carol’s shoulder as Carol strokes her hand over Maria’s hair.
“God, I love your hair like this,” says Carol, pressing the pads of her fingers to the soft curls.
“Thank you, baby,” Maria replies. “Glad I went natural. So much more manageable, to be honest Looks good, too.”
“You always look great,” Carol compliments. “It’s like every time I come home, the kid’s grown a few inches more, or you’re lookin’ even more radiant.”
“Don’t have to butter me up, Danvers,” says Maria as she tickles Carol’s side, causing her to squirm. “I already gave you some.”
They both laugh and Carol holds Maria tighter.
“I know, it’s just that I promised myself I’d tell you how beautiful you are every time the thought crosses my mind,” Carol admits, before kissing Maria’s forehead. “My work has me away from the two of you so much that I gotta make every moment here count.”
Maria is silent a beat, before she leans up on her elbow and glances down at Carol.
“You know you don’t always have to make grand gestures, right?” she asks as she places her hand over Carol’s heart. “It’s the little things that mean the most to us. Like the cupcakes you’re makin’ with the baby girl tomorrow.”
Carol smiles and says, “Oh, yeah. Can’t wait for the cupcakes. Still can’t believe Earth is the only planet that does cupcakes in the whole galaxy.”
“I know, right? It’s a cryin’ shame.”
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Later, after the lights are off and the overhead fan hums quietly, Carol is drawn from her slumber by a tossing and turning beside her. Unintelligible murmurs slip from Maria’s lips as she thrashes about in their bed.
Carol reaches for her, ever so gently, placing a tentative hand to Maria’s arm. Her skin is searing and slick from perspiration. There is a slight tremor coursing through her. Carol’s heart sinks. She whispers Maria’s name softly into the darkness, then closer to her ear.
“Maria. Baby. Shhhh. It’s okay. Everything’s okay.”
A promise in the dead of night. Maria’s murmurs grow quiet; less frequent. Carol shifts closer, holding her still. Soothing words and light caresses calm her. The thrashing stops. Her breathing becomes even. She relaxes. She melts against Carol. Her slumber is peaceful again.
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 Maria’s been sleeping alone for three months and has Carol back in their bed just a week; one week into her one month of leave. A week is not much time in the grander scheme of things, but the small moments are what she cherishes. Mundane domestic things are special to her and keep her from worrying so much while the love of her life is off saving the universe. She understands why Carol does it. To protect their little family and every other family out there. Still, she can’t help but feel the dread eating away at her with every moment that passes. Even now that Carol is home safe, the trepidation creeps up on Maria because she knows that the call will come, and Carol will go. And who knows if she will make it back to them next time?
Maria pushes those thoughts deep down inside where the dread is churning away.  
She and her girls have cupcakes to make.
Monica stirs the batter with a wooden spoon. She is somehow cleaner than her parents: Carol’s shirt is a mess and Maria has flour dotted against her face and dusted against her hair. They smile and laugh and speak about how delicious the cupcakes will be. Maria watches the two of them, cheerfully oblivious to the fact that for the past week sleep has been evading her. And when she does sleep, her slumber is plagued with nightmares. Maria brushes the thoughts aside. They don’t need to know. She doesn’t need to sully the moment. The moments they cherish.
A yawn escapes her lips and Monica says, “Mama. Don’t forget to cover your mouth when you yawn or the devil will fly in.”
Maria rolls her eyes and looks at Carol, before saying, “I wish you wouldn’t tell her these old wives’ tales.”
And then, to herself, There’re enough demons here to last a lifetime.
“Sorry, babe,” says Carol stealing a quick kiss, but not before noticing the faraway look that settles on Maria’s pretty face.
Carol takes hold of her hand and asks, “You alright?”
“Yeah, course,” Maria answers, giving her hand a squeeze. “Come on. Let’s get these cupcakes in the oven.”
One minute, Carol, Maria, and Monica are laughing in the kitchen, the next, Carol’s getting trays out to put the cupcake batter in, and a bunch of them come tumbling to the floor. The loud clanging startles Maria and the next thing they know is she’s flinching away, almost ducking for cover.
Carol doesn’t notice until Monica is standing there with a frightened expression on her face.
“Babe? Maria? Baby?” says Carol, as she notices the other woman cowering near the island counter.
She steps forward and Maria snaps out of her momentary fright.
“I’m okay,” says Maria, forcing a smile and straightening up. “I’m okay. Just got startled.”
Monica moves toward her mother and falls into an embrace. Carol comes and wraps her arm around her wife.
“You sure you’re okay?”
“Yeah,” Maria says, slightly embarrassed by her reaction. “I’m just tired.”
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The light hanging in the workshop is sufficient despite the late hour and the shroud of darkness blanketing everything. Maria wipes her grease-covered hands onto her coveralls, and then presses the back of her hand to her brow. It doesn’t matter how much work she has put into the small craft, she always finds something else that needs fixing or tinkering with. It’s where Carol finds her, frowning at the engine in the middle of the night.
“There you are,” says Carol softly, so as not to startle Maria. “You had me scared for a minute.”
Carol comes closer, holding a container and wearing a gentle smile.
“Hey, babe,” Maria replies, as she places her tools down and leans against the tiny aircraft. “Just working on the engine.”
“How’s it comin’?”
“Haven’t even started her up at all.”
Carol takes a seat on a crate close by.
“For real?”
“Yeah, it’s silly. I just don’t want the noise,” Maria explains. “And it’s so quiet out here. Close enough to home, but far away from everyone. And I need that. I need the peace and quiet.”
Silence floats around them for a brief moment before Carol asks, “Is it to do with the nightmares?”
Maria lets out a little huff that is more of a self-deprecating laugh.
“Nothin’ gets past you.”
“I noticed,” Carol supplies with a gentle smile. “So, what’s it all about?”
“You,” says Maria, causing Carol’s stomach to drop. “It’s about what happened to you before. And then you comin’ back. I was just getting used to not havin’ you around, hard as it was. And then you came back. And I’m happy, but confused? And scared. I dunno.”
Carol nods her head and lets Maria continue.
“You were up there, and then you weren’t. And there was nothing left. You were gone. Just like that. And now you’re back. And it’s a lot for me to deal with.”
“You – you want me to go?” asks Carol earnestly, as a look of concern washes over her face and fear settles in her stomach.
“No. Of course not. I want you here with us, I just – it’s brought up a lot of memories. Things I thought I was over. And I’m scared.”
Carol feels her heart break as she listens to Maria’s trembling words, before she whispers, “What’re you afraid of?”
Maria takes a deep, albeit shaky breath.
“That this is all a cruel dream,” Maria admits. “That I’ll wake up and reach for you, and you’ll be gone, again. For good this time. I just – I just don’t know how to stop this sinking feeling.”
She glances down at the container and asks, “What you got there?”
It’s a respite from the heaviness of their conversation.
“Cupcakes,” Carol says with a smile, as she removes the lid. “You want some?”
“Yeah,” Maria replies, grinning plaintively.
They each take a cupcake and Maria sits next to Carol. They eat in silence before Carol speaks again.
“You being out here on your own with the baby and no one to lean on isn’t good. I want to be here for you. Talk to me. Tell me what’s on your mind.”
“What if it’s something you don’t want to hear?”
“I still wanna hear it. We’ll face it together.”
“Okay,” Maria says, while taking another deep breath. “Okay. I don’t want you to quit doin’ what you do. It’s important work. But I would like it if you were around more. I don’t know what that looks like for us. I just know bein’ worried about it keeps me up at night.”
Carol nods in understanding and says, “I’ll quit tomorrow if you want me to.”
“That’s not it. I really don’t want that, and I know you don’t either.”
“Okay, I can make a compromise. I can come back home more often, do more work here, and we can get some help for you. Help you deal a little better; help you with the nightmares.”
Maria smiles and slips her free hand into Carol’s and says, “Thank you. I’d like that. God. I feel better already.”
Carol lifts Maria’s hand to her lips and kisses her knuckles before saying, “Good. I’m glad. And no matter where I go, this is my home, here with my girls. So if you ever need me to call in sick, I’ll do it.”
“You don’t get sick,” says Maria with a smile.
“Yeah, yeah,” Carol replies, bumping their shoulders together. “But if you ever need me to stop, I’ll do it.”
“I can’t ask you to stop saving the world. But I appreciate you bein’ here with us here and now.”
“I’m gonna take another month or two of leave. Gonna submit a request tomorrow.”
“Babe, one extra month is fine.”
“Two months,” Carol insists.
“You’re a sweetheart, and an amazing wife, but one extra month is good. You’ve got a universe to protect, too, remember.”
“Yeah well, you’re my whole universe, okay? I’ll do what I need to protect you. And right now, you need me here. Everyone else can wait.”
The pair share tired smiles and then a chaste kiss before silently finishing off their cupcakes and retiring to their bedroom, pleased to have spoken; pleased to have cleared the air. Both sleep through the rest of the night holding one another, unmarred by worry and bad dreams.
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cxmetery-gates · 4 months ago
SUMMARY: Lynn and Gabriel have a heart-to-heart talk about her last lover, with Gabe offering barely-legal suggestions. WORD COUNT: 2.45k NOTES: Gabe is probably my favorite character WARNINGS: dark!tom hiddleston, teacher!tom hiddleston, mentions of past relationships, break-up talk, h*tler reference?? never thought i’d write that
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THE SOUND OF A BELL alerts the classroom that the period is over. Everyone had been already packed and ready to go minutes before Mr. Hiddleston even began wrapping up his lesson. Even when I suffered through chemistry or dragged my deflated soul through finance, I never thought of putting my notes and pens away so soon. I know more than one student saw the icy glare I sent across the room but, most importantly and unfortunately, I also know nearly all of them didn't catch the slight disappointment in Mr. Hiddleston's tone.
I truly despise most people.
From the moment class started, it's been so unmistakably clear how much he loves what he teaches, that he enjoys what he spent thousands of dollars on just to show people how great literature is. I understand that all too well— save the going into debt part. Teachers are often times so mundane with their knowledge, not realizing how the way they present the information affects our understanding and interest in such. This is why high school teachers are stereotyped as people who just want a paid summer vacation. However, Mr. Hiddleston really put effort into his theatrics, like his lecture was a play. People with a teaching degree should teach in this way— why else go penniless willingly? The overall excitement was entertaining. And for that, I have to give the man some credit.
"Alright, guys. We'll be diving into the second part of this lecture tomorrow. Have a good one, you are dismissed." I don't think Mr. Hiddleston needed to announce the last blip of his closing statement. As I said, people are so rude.
Ellie begins to shove her notepad and other items into her bag after our teacher finishes speaking, reminding me of my kind company. I, on the other hand, am scrambling to take the last bit of notes, trying to relay any possible concepts mentioned on to paper. While there might not have been much depth in today's class, jotting down every last tidbit of information could be life or death. Or perhaps I'm just anal-retentive when it comes to note-taking. By the time I finish the note, Ellie is already standing.
"Girl, hurry up. We gotta go!" She drags out the last vowel of the last word humorously.
I wave my hand at her, flipping pages and dodging paper cuts. "Go on without me. I'll be fine," I say, remembering that Ellie's homeroom is on the first floor and the farthest down the hall.
Rolling her big brown eyes, she sighs, walking backward. "I'll miss you poppet. I love you." Her fake British accent is terrible, but I don't bother enlightening her. Perhaps the slight discoloration in her cheeks and how fast she dashed out of the room was due to finding Mr. Hiddleston in ear-shot of her terrible accent. I bite my lip, forcing myself to look away out of sheer second-hand embarrassment.
Once all my belongings are together, I turn to leave.
"That truly was an awful mockery," Mr. Hiddleston says in my direction from the whiteboard. His long toned arms wipe the marker away as I begin to walk past him.
I chuckle. "I'll let her know you said that."
Mr. Hiddleston fakes a groan, placing the eraser on the marker tray then turning to face me with those oh-so-charming eyes. There's no other way to describe them other than mesmerizing. "Oh, don't tell her I said it. I like being liked."
"Being 'liked' is the least of your worries with these girls," I mumble, mostly to humor myself. However, I must have been louder than anticipated. The innuendo is heard and doesn't fly over his head.
A titter of a laugh is heard from the man, and I now regret the words I mumbled. "So I have been told," he replies, making a slightly uncomfortable face. I can't blame him; anyone would feel incredibly awkward if teaching a class full of people who would sell both kidneys just to see them without a shirt.
Not in my dreams would I have imagined having a conversation with Mr. Hiddleston about how everyone wants to nail him. While such a phrase hasn't been explicitly noted, I have a feeling both our minds are in the same gutter. And with that recognition, an awkward heat embraces me. I press my lips together tightly and offer a shrug. "I think the proper thing for me to say is good luck."
Seeming to take my word, Mr. Hiddleston passes me a smile. I can't read what the meaning is, but I'll take it nonetheless with a cough to clear my throat. "Ah, well, as much as I love juicy gossip and scandals, I've got a stuck up prune for homeroom, so I definitely need to get going." I send him a wave, making my exit as awkward as possible.
"Warntz?" He asks.
My nose wrinkles at the name. It eve sounds terrible, almost as terrifying as Trunchbull or Umbridge. "You betcha."
"Good luck, Lynn. You've got two minutes."
I want to give another sassy remark, but the teasing look I find when I look over my shoulder sends my body into another blush. Muttering something close to 'whatever,' I decide that leaving is for the best, even if that means awaiting an angry, shriveled up raisin.
Exiting the high school front doors a few hours before the final bell is like the biggest sigh of relief and 'sucks to be you' to everyone else. An arm wraps around my shoulder, one I embrace kindly.
"So, we've got an hour on our hands," Gabriel reminds me, hinting we'll have to come back to grab Ellie and River. As he speaks, I toss my head back on his toned bicep. I swear he works out too much for an unpopular loser. "What would you like to do?"
I groan, dragging my chin down to my chest. "Why do I have to decide? You know I hate making decisions."
"We're taking second lunch here, Lynn. It isn't life or death, you weirdo," Gabe chortles.
"Can we just go get a coffee? I feel like I'm about to pass out." For effect, I pretend to faint, nearly going complete limp before his arms can hoist me back up.
Rolling his dark eyes, my partner in crime pulls a set of keys from his pocket, swinging the lanyard around his fingers while we head towards a tattered white truck being held together by zip ties, duct tape, and love. "You and Elle with your coffee addiction."
"Could be meth," I retort.
Snorting, Gabe slips a key into the slit on the driver's side. I stand on the opposite, sending a humored smile. "Yeah, as if that's any worse."
We make it to the local coffee shop in no time. Luckily for us, the lunch rush hour in this town ends just as we hit the road if we avoid the main highways that is. Gabe's truck and the coffee shop have a similar aesthetic: crowded, old, falling apart with an overwhelming sense of home and personality. I can't count how many times I've broken down and received well off advice from him in both locations. It feels safe here and being around him. Gabe's like the much older brother (by a month) that I never had. We're both complete, utter assholes to each other about 60% of the time, enforcing the sibling-like bond we have.
"Thank you," I say sweetly to the barista as he places my cold brew in front of me and Gabe's hot chocolate in front of him. Mimicking my gratitude, Gabe gives his thanks as the employee shuffled away, awkwardly patting at his frizzy hair.
We both take a sip and visibly relax. "So, the first day of our last year of high school." Gabe is also the mom friend. "Tell me, dear, how were all your classes?"
"Oh, dearest mother, I feel so content with my choices," I reply with a vintage accent, acting as though my voiced popped in from the 1920s. "How ever will I pick a favorite?"
Wiggling his brows, Gabe replies, "I hear someone landed themselves in the hottest teacher's class."
Prompting to return to my normal voice, I roll my eyes, a huff expelling from my diaphragm. "He's definitely a piece of eye candy, I'll tell you that."
"Took four years to figure that one out? I didn't realize unobservant you are." Taking a pause, Gabe brings to smirk widely. "Maybe that's why you haven't asked River out yet."
My eyes grow wide, my skin goes red. Looking at anywhere other than Gabe's eyes and smirking lips is a must. "I don't know—"
"Lynn, everyone knows."
"Sure, but he doesn't." I pause. "Wait, does he?"
"Dude, no, of course, he doesn't. He still thinks you're heartbroken over Trinity."
Ah, yes, Trinity. Who knew a happy year and two months could be wholly demolished beyond reconciliation in a single weekend? Certain not I, as I have spent the past three months moving on and over the ordeal. An annoyed grunt leads my cheek to rest in my fist. "He thinks I'm not over it?"
Gabe leans forwards. "None of us do, Lynn."
I stay silent.
"What happened... you didn't deserve that. Hell, Hitler wouldn't have deserved that. Probably."
"Point is, I know you're still trying to find a way to heal. You've done a damn good job, duh. But River thinks you're still in love with her."
"Ugh. I'd rather eat hairy horse shit than see her ever again."
Gabriel nods, "I was hoping that would be the case."
Knocking my knuckles on the wooden table, I let out an exaggerated sigh. "Man, I'm tired."
"You know we're all here for you, right?" Gabe asks, leaning in just a few inches. I want to roll my eyes, tell him that he worries too much, but I can't. I can't tell him, not because I want him to shut up or to change the topic, but because he knows me. To Gabe, I'm an open book.
I run out of words to say relating to the topic. The breakup is old news, everything following the incident becoming irrelevant memories and irreplaceable time. I'm kidding myself when I say I've moved on entirely because Gabriel is right: I haven't. Sometimes my thoughts get stuck on what I could have done better or what I should have done to convince her to stay. Despite these annoying blips, I know deep down that it was inevitable, that her consistent cheating and the emotional manipulation would only surface for everyone to see in due time. If they hadn't— which I tried to keep from happening— I have a gut-wrenching feeling I'd still be in the situation. I had a feeling Trinity and me wouldn't last, but it wasn't until after things ended did I realize how well she had me wrapped around her finger. It's taken months to find my way out of her web, but I now face the scary journey of recovery. Thankfully, the process has not been as hard as I anticipated. After all, living two cities away certainly helps.
"Yeah, I know. I'm still going through the motions. I just want it to speed up, you know?"
Smirking and pulling his hand back, Gabriel replies, "Maybe a Tinder will help?"
My nose wrinkles at the mere consideration. Hooking up, dating apps, meeting strangers behind a phone— not really my thing. "Nah, I'll pass on that offer, thanks."
"Suit yourself."
"Hmm, maybe I'll look into a sugar daddy site. Money from older men might make me feel a bit better."
Gabriel takes a sip of his hot chocolate, grinning. "Well, you have an interesting way with teachers. If you're struggling in a particular class, maybe that little fantasy of yours will come true."
"Oh yes, I can't wait to hop on Mr. Riley's seventy-year-old dick."
"Mhmm, yummy."
At this, I bark into a laughing-while-painfully-cringing fit. Never being a fan of the phrase "yummy" and having it tied to a man that's so old he's basically decaying, I find every part of this new conversation revoltingly hilarious. I guess my sudden outburst of laughter caught Gabe off guard, staring at me with a shocked grin and fixing the infamous beanie he wears. I couldn't count how many times I've seen him without; you can't count to zero.
"It really wasn't that funny," he says with a small hiccup of laughter in his voice.
I settle myself now that I feel the eyes of everyone in the coffee shop staring. "You're right, but something about it made me crack." I flip my phone over to check the time. "Should we be getting back? They've got twenty minutes left."
Gabe nods and lets out a content sigh. "Yeah, I guess so."
We decide to chug the rest of our beverages quickly— now room temperature and not as satisfying— before heading back out into the world. Away in the parking lot, the truck seems to beckon us to its forty-year-old, duct-tape-bound seats. As Gabe unlocks the truck doors, I let out a content sign and stare up at the sky. Above, the sun beams down on us and, like an idiot, I managed to look directly into it. It takes a moment for my eyes to adjust but by that point, a dark cloud rolled over the blinding, distant star.
☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆
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katsukisblackteddy · 4 months ago
hi hi hi !!! i was wondering if you could do a bakugou x indian reader who’s from new york?? like lwky veronica lodge and/or blair waldorf vibes ?? like she’s really cheeky and sophisticated and gives a lot of gifts?? like someone could give her a hug and boom the next day ‘ here’s a 12k bracelet from tiffany & co 😃😃 ‘ IDK I THOUGHT THIS WOULD BE FUNNY OR SOMETHING IDK I HOPE THIS ISNT TOO WEIRD LMFAO
“And I Thought Momo & Todoroki Were Rich”
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Pairings: None Pronouns: She/Her Word Count: 1k Warnings: None
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Being the daughter of two high profile parents came with its perks. Your father’s business was considered a tech giant, and it made him one of the richest men in the world. Your mother had been the United States’ top neurosurgeon, before she retired deciding instead to focus on her philanthropic passions of bringing healthcare to developing nations through Doctors Without Borders. (My point is...y’all are rich rich)
“Alright everyone quiet down. There’s a new student coming today.” Aizawa stated tiredly, his shoulder length dark hair falling into his face a bit. He stood against the desk at the front of the room, his eyes going to the door when he saw the door knob turn. 
“I hope it’s a hot girl!” Mineta remarked as Hagakure pushed him off his chair causing the short boy to fall face first onto the ground. Hagakure wasn’t a mean person, he just got annoying.
The door opened to reveal Nezu standing beside you, a brown skinned girl (BrOwN sKiNnEd GyaL..i’m sorry i had to). To the others, you seemed friendly enough with your full lips pulled up into a soft smile. Your dark hair came to just above your shoulders and you wore a simple red headband in your hair. “Hello everyone. I’m (y/n), it’s nice to meet you.” 
“Woah? Where are you from? Your accent is so cool!” A blonde boy with a black lightning bolt in his hair asked, his eyes wide and a large smile on his face. “I’m Kaminari Denki, by the way.”
“I’m from New York.” You answered before taking the only empty seat which was beside a boy with half white and half red hair. 
“Why’d you come to Japan? New York seems much cooler.” Mina sighed. “I’ve always wanted to go!”
“My dad is expanding his company and my mother wanted to expand her charity. I don’t mind though.” You explained with a shrug of your shoulders. 
“Wait a second! Ochako it’s your birthday?!” Mina announced suddenly, after receiving a notification reminder on her phone. 
“My birthday’s tomorrow, Mina.” The brown haired girl with rosy cheeks corrected her. 
“It’s your birthday tomorrow? What do you like? Jewelry? Perfume? Shoes? Concert tickets?” You questioned thinking about some of the things you had given as presents to your friends in the past. 
“N-no, that’s too much!” Ochako’s eyes widened as she shook her head. 
“That’s okay. I’m sure I’ll be friends with everyone here, if that’s what you’re worried about?” You tried to reassure her. “It’s not that big of a deal, Ochako...I’ll surprise you then? Do you like pink?”
She nodded as you made a mental note. You had seen a really pretty necklace with a pink diamond in the center that was in the shape of a heart. You had originally wanted one for yourself, but it would be much more fun to match with someone.
After your first day of school at UA had ended you had been standing outside waiting for your driver to take you to your father’s company where you would meet your mother to go out to dinner. 
“(Y/n)!” You turned hearing your name being called as you waved over to the group of girls and boys that were approaching you. Kaminari, Kirishima, Ochako, Midoriya, Jirou, Mina, Hagakure, Momo, and Bakugou (who had been dragged by Kirishima) came to stand near you. 
“Oh hey guys! Thanks for making me feel welcome today! You all are great friends.” You smiled at them, before glancing behind you to look at the road to see if your driver had come yet. 
“Do you wanna hang out tomorrow since today’s Friday?” They asked you as you thought about it for a minute. 
“Tomorrow…” You paused running through your schedule. “I think I’m free tomorrow. Do you want to come over to my house? We just finished moving in!”
“Sure. Send us the address!” Mina answered excitedly as everyone nodded, even the explosive blonde agreed.
“We can have a party for your birthday Ochako! It’ll be perfect!” You said excitedly as you clapped your hands. “I’ve gotta go talk to my event planner! I’ve gotta get decorations! Wait...what kind of cake do you like? Do you even like cake? Maybe cupcakes?”
“E-event planner?”
“Yeah...I can’t plan a party by myself without input from him.” You said as if it was the most normal thing in the world. “He’s great! I gotta go! See you tomorrow! I’ll text you the details tonight.” You called as you walked off towards your vehicle where your driver was waiting with the door open for you. 
It was the next day and the doorbell rang signaling that your new friends had just arrived. You opened one of the two large front doors to see the group holding snacks and gifts.
“Happy birthday Ochako!” You smiled, holding the small long blue box with a white ribbon wrapped around it. You pulled her into a hug as she entered your home along with  the rest of the class, before you stepped back allowing everyone to enter. You handed her the gift. “I hope you like it.”
“(Y/N)! T-This is too much! How much did this cost!” Ochako was practically speechless after puling the ribbon off and opening the box, her eyes wide as she held the beautiful necklace in her hands. It was a heart shaped pink diamond on a gold chain.
“Do you not like it?” You grew concerned. You always thought you had been a good gift giver, your old friends had always loved the gifts you gave them in the past.
“N-No I love it! It’s just really expensive isn’t it? How much did it cost?” Ochako questioned as you helped her put it on. 
“Don’t worry Ochako! I got it at a great price because my mom is friends with the jeweler.” You explained. “It was only 1,470,490 yen! Isn’t that such a steal!” You said as everyone’s eyes widened at your smile. 
“1,470,490.00 yen! (Y/n)!”
“I know, I feel kind of bad, I should’ve paid more.” You shrugged a small frown on your face. “Why are you all looking at me like that? Was it a bad gift? All of my other friends loved when I gave them gifts like this?”
“You spent more than one million yen on a necklace for someone you barely know.” Bakugou broke the silence with a roll of his crimson eyes. “Dumbass.” He added after a moment
“It wasn’t that expensive, relax guys. That’s only like my weekly allowance.” You said with a laugh and shrug. “Now come on! Let’s party!”
“Weekly allowance?” Kaminari sweatdropped. “And I thought Momo and Todoroki were rich.”
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lostinreality014 · 4 months ago
#ThinkPositive2020: Dec 31
Made it through the day on 4 hours of sleep
Ritz crackers and peanut butter for breakfast
Started transferring my #ThinkPositive posts to my new wordpress blog site
Mom’s homemade broccoli cheese soup for lunch
It rained all day - it was the perfect relaxing, lazy day
Salmon and steamed veggies for dinner
Had an HGTV marathon today
Washed my sheets
Lots of cuddles and play time with Ellie
Got a few cuddles from Mr. Chips
2020 has been quite the year and I am more than ready to see it shrink into oblivion in my personal rear-view mirror as each day passes in 2021. When we greeted 2020, I was ready for a year full of fun and adventure. I had a couple of trips with friends planned, tickets to multiple concerts, I was leaving a job that made me miserable beyond belief and starting a new job that I knew would challenge me in all the right ways. 
And then COVID hit and threw everyone’s world off kilter. All my trips were cancelled or postponed. Every show/concert I had tickets to was also cancelled or postponted. All sporting events were cancelled or put on hold indefinitely. I started working from home like a lot of people did (this was not a terrible thing as I quite enjoy it and am far more productive). I stopped hanging out with friends (like everyone did) and sequestered myself in my house (and eventually my apartment) and only went out when absolutely necessary. The worst part about this pandemic has been not being able to be around friends and other family members, and not being able to hug people - god I miss hugs. I’d like to think I didn’t take all the things I love and miss for granted pre-COVID. I really hope I didn’t. But this pandemic has definitely reminded me of how much I appreciate all of those things and I’ll appreciate them even more when this virus is under control and we’re able to go back to something that resembles normal pre-COVID.
In some weird, twisted way, this pandemic has been a blessing in disguise for me. In September, I ended up in the hospital for several days after having a cardiac episode while watching playoff hockey (I always joked the Stars would one day land me there, just didn’t think it’d actually happen). That was when I learned I had a heart condition. It was a condition I was born with and the symptoms never presented themselves until this summer - at least that’s when I think they truly started. I just attributed them to all my neck/back issues because I didn’t know any different. After much discussion with my cardiologist and mom, I opted to have surgery to fix the main issue with my heart condition rather than trying to use various medications to control it. As much as I hate that all my plans were cancelled this year because of COVID, I’m also grateful because I couldn’t imagine what would have happened had I been out of town on a trip when I had the cardiac episode. I’m certain it would have been far more terrifying than it was had I been away from home and in an unfamiliar city let alone another country. I’m beyond grateful for the team of doctors and nurses that took care of me while I was in the hospital during my initial stay and my overnight stay following my surgery. I am now fully recovered from my surgery and doing quite well.
Looking back on this year, I can definitely say that it was a challenge that I was in no way shape or form ready for. But at the same time, there were a lot of positives that came from it. I started going to therapy again, which was the best decision I made all year. I survived and fully recovered from a cardiac event. I have managed to stay healthy along with many of my family and friends. I have been able to stay in touch with all of my friends through various communication channels. And most importantly, I learned how strong and resilient I really am. 
As I said, I’m ready to watch 2020 shrink in my personal rear-view mirror as each new day in 2021 passes. And when it’s safe to do so again, I’ll be firing on all cylinders to get back to traveling, hanging out with friends, going to concerts and hockey games, going to the movies, and doing all the other things we were able to do pre-COVID. I’m also ready to take on new challenges at work and grow as a grant writer, maybe get back into some dance classes, and work on improving my photography skills. I still have dreams of being a concert photographer one day. Gotta start somewhere right?
Even though this year’s New Year’s celebrations look a lot different thanks to COVID, I do hope everyone has a safe and happy new year. I’m cautiously optimistic about 2021 and I hope you are to!
GOODBYE 2020!!! HELLO 2021!!!
(Note: this will be my last #ThinkPositive post on my tumblr account. Beginning tomorrow, all these posts will be published on my new blog site: Think Positivity)
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dc41896 · 4 months ago
One of Those Days
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Pairing: Chris EvansxBlack Reader
⚠️: None, fluff💕!
Turning the ignition of your car off, an exhausted sigh slips from your lips as your eyes close, head falling back on the leather headrest behind you. You spend the next few minutes letting your body relax enjoying the silence before having to step back out into the cold to enter your house. Closing your door, you hear the wild laughters of your three year old and husband from the backyard, prompting you to make a quick detour from how you’d usually get in.
Tottering around in her boots and thick winter coat with small, orange beanie and hood pulled over her head, she tries her best to run from her father, but looks unsteady due to the jacket not really giving her room to move. After a couple steps she stumbles, falling forward but putting out her hands stopping her from landing on her tummy.
“Uh oh!,” she repeats after Chris, who quickly squats by her side cleaning the dirt from her hands. Like the protective big brother he is, Dodger also joins her side nudging his nose to her cheek as if checking on her and returning her laughter.
“You okay bean?,” he asks checking her hands to make sure she didn’t get poked or cut by anything hidden in the dirt. The sight was too cute giving you a much needed laugh after the day you’d experienced.
Inching closer, you catch Chris’ eye giving a small wave as he winks before tapping Willow and pointing in your direction. “Look! Who’s that over there?”
“Mama!!” Wide smile on her face, you meet her halfway lifting her in your arms to shower her face in kisses. In this moment, holding your baby close with her head on your shoulder, you feel so at peace and truly happy to be home, the tears you kept blocked and shoved away all day come to a head.
“Uh oh mama.” Her small hands begin to wipe away your tears making more fall at how sweet she was.
“It’s okay honey I’m fine,” you smile through your sniffling. “Just happy to be home and see you.”
“Alright, I think it’s time we go back inside and get you cleaned up for dinner miss,” Chris states tapping under her chin. “Can you put back your toys?”
With a “tay,” she wiggles down to return her toys scattered along the yard to the bin next to her playhouse while Dodger walks beside her.
“Bad day?”
“Yea.” Pulling you closer, your arms wrap around his sweater covered waist as he leans down sweetly kissing your lips and wiping the remaining tears from your cheeks. Standing in his warmth, your head falls to his chest and eyes close breathing in the leftover cologne still present from the grocery run last weekend.
You didn’t realize how much you just needed to be held until more tears pricked the corners of your eyes making your husband gently rub your back as he softly shushed your cries.
“I got Willow and dinner. You go ahead and try to relax, okay?”
“You have dinner?,” you question looking up to see that dazzling smile as he chuckles.
“I’m heating up leftovers for us and chicken nuggets for bean, but yes I have dinner. Now, you go before I take you myself.”
His lips kiss your temple and hand lightly taps your hip as you both pull away. Crossing through the sliding glass doors into the comfortably heated home, Chris and Willow aren’t too far behind stopping on the patio deck so he can remove her boots and ask if she had fun today, which of course was an ecstatic yes.
After your bath, complete with eucalyptus and lavender soap bringing the perfect amount of bubbles and a couple lit candles on the sink counter, you join your family for a dinner filled with laughs and smiles from them telling you about their day. How they watched movies and played with dolls before going outside to play some more.
“Ready to tell me what happened?,” he asks putting the last of the dishes in the washer before turning to you perched on the counter. You tried to help, but he forbade you from lifting a finger for the rest of the night going as far to even swat your hand away when you still attempted to clear the dishes from the table.
Thus why you were sat on the counter “overseeing” everything.
“I just felt overwhelmed. Like I’m trying my best to get everything done, but it feels like I’m not moving fast enough. Then the person that’s supposed to be helping me really isn’t doing anything and didn’t show up today. So now I’m getting emails asking when stuff will get done, which I don’t know, and feel like everyone’s looking at me like I’m not doing my job.”
“Well first, I’m sorry that you feel that way and today wasn’t the best for you,” he smiles sympathetically with hands caressing your cheeks. “And you’ve been working there for years, so I’m sure your boss and everyone there knows how hard of a worker you are.”
“Maybe you should talk to her and say how that other person isn’t really doing anything? Or talk to the person themselves?”
“You know I hate confrontation,” you groan bringing your hands up to hold his forearms.
“I know, but this is bothering you and you gotta say something for it to get better.”
“I know..”
“Unless you want me to go up there.”
“And do what?,” you ask amused.
“Anything that’ll fix it,” he laughs briefly meeting your lips before you’re both interrupted by your daughter banging her plastic, toy pot on the floor humming a made up tune.
“And I’ll bring Willow as back up just in case.”
“Great plan.” you snort wrapping your arms around his neck and gliding your finger along the hairs at his nape as his hands fall to your thighs.
“Seriously though, you know I’d do anything to make you happy. I hate to see you upset.”
“I know, and as long as you’re there, that’s more than enough.”
“Uggies!” Arms outstretched with a small pout on her lips, Willow’s small footsteps pad up to you and Chris making you both aww as he lifts her to rest on his hip.
“Did you think we’d leave you out of uggies?,” you ask tickling her side to cause an eruption of giggles. All of you hugging closely together, you smile feeling the weight of the day finally leaving your shoulders. Your work was still waiting back in the office, but you chose to bask in the calmness of the moment letting what may come tomorrow wait until then.
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