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astaroth1357 · 10 months ago
Demon Brothers as Roommates
So, the MC has left the Devildom and, of course, everybody is quite sad… But this time around, they have a little trick up their sleeve. With just a bit of magic (and training thanks to Solomon) the MC can now summon one of their favorite demon boys up to the human world with them! There's just, uh, one problem though… After being summoned to their side, their beloved demon now refuses to leave it.
Alright MC, enjoy your new demonic roommate!!
Apparently Lucifer is on sabbatical… And yes, he does appreciate that irony in that.
Lucifer actually has a surprising amount of human world money stashed away in alias accounts (because this man renting a cheap motel on business trips? Let's be real) so he uses that wealth to get them a place befitting his standards… which are high.
Spacious apartments in nice areas that would make even the upper middle-class shit their pants? Congrats, MC, that's where you're staying now!
Even with all that money, though, Lucifer CANNOT sit idle for a second. The guy is used to working all his life and just sitting around would drive him insane!
Expect him to still be running some Devildom affairs long-distance style while doing something else on the side, probably stock market stuff tbh.
Is going to want to pay for and provide everything himself but will respect the MC if they still want to work and split the bills (not to a ridiculous degree, though, like half-and-half because that would mean getting three jobs at least).
A lot of trips and vacations too, especially if the MC likes to travel. It’s a good excuse to relax while also technically doing something so he doesn’t lose his mind doing nothing in particular.
He is going to be that strict roommate who expects you not to be a slob and isn't afraid to say so. Regularly scheduled cleaning/organization days are mandatory because hygiene is important. Take some pride in yourself and wash up, MC. That kind of thing.
Also going to have short-fuse for… antics. If you want to prank him, do so at your own risk because he may prank back (and that’s not nearly as fun as it sounds, trust me.)
Yeah so, living with Mammon is like the inverse of Lucifer. Prepare to be poooor.
Man has no human money, are you kidding me? Even if he did, he wouldn’t keep it for very long. Couples budgeting is a MUST if you’re looking to survive.
The apartment is going to be whatever the MC can more or less afford on their own with Mammon shoved in somewhere like a cheap lamp… Don’t expect a lot of room.
However, Mammon is great at the hustle. Man can work multiple jobs and actually be pretty dang good at them. For the most part, anyway. He may occasionally trip up and get himself fired, but he bounces back quick.
If the MC isn’t so moral he can also uh… “find” some extra money lying around too. Just be careful when playing with fire, right?
Even if they’re poor as shit, Mammon is still a blast to be around. The guy knows how to have fun on and off of a budget. Lots of “window shopping” (getting kicked out of stores for goofing off), nightclubs, amusement parks, and cheap fun. They’ll never be without a story to tell or a smile on their face!
He IS pretty slobbish though. He’s not going to remember to clean up after himself unless told, but he’s also not going to be bothered if they don’t do the same thing. A weekly cleaning day is going to be ideal unless they don’t mind living in a pigsty...
Prank waaaaars!! The kind of guy to get them both water guns and have a war in the middle of the apartment complex. Good luck getting any rest with Mammon around.
Whelp, your room is now his room, quite literally MC. You had to pick the shut-in…
The guy isn’t exactly poor but what human money he does have is all wrapped up in his many interests… Merch interests specifically. 
Thankfully, he won’t take up too much space. Put him in a room with a desk, bed (or bathtub), TV, and computer and he’s good to go! 
He’s not going to be a complete bum, thankfully. There’s no way that they can get him to leave the apartment, but he can run small online stores (usually anime themed) or become a streamer. Probably enough to help pay the bills, but not much more.
If they don’t mind having a literally permanent housemate, then being with Levi has its own kind fun. Lots of anime marathons, movie nights, and game nights. Really, it’s just like how he was in the House, but now transported to the human world.
Is probably going to want a pet goldfish, snake ,or lizard so prepare to house Henry 3.0.
When he does leave the apartment, it’s to take the MC to conventions, concerts, or anime stores. He always manages to get just enough money for these trips, but never says where the money comes from… Best not to ask. Could be black market for they know...
… He’s a shut-in. He’s a shut-in roommate. Hygiene isn’t exactly his main concern. If they ask him to, he’ll make sure to clean up after himself, but he may need a reminder.
Can have a fun side, but just don’t mess with his stuff too much. He doesn’t need a Mammon 2.0 around too...
He's either hatching a plan for world domination or adopting 10 cats… One or the other.
About as poor as Mammon at first, but threat not. He won’t be for very long. Satan is intelligent beyond his years (or equivalent his years maybe?) so he’ll probably net himself several degrees within a couple semesters like a certified prodigy.
At that point, there really isn’t much to worry about (aside from student loans, join our pain Satan) but he can sell himself just fine and probably get some high paying job like a lawyer or doctor or whatever… I’m not jealous…
They’ll start out in a pretty modest place, but there will be upgrades fairly quickly when he starts racking it in so Satan’s a fairly decent choice as a roommate.
He does still have that nasty habit of breaking things when he’s pissed off, but that can be subverted by getting a pet! Just hold up whatever cat you own when he’s about to rampage then declare that he’s scaring/upsetting them and he’ll stop in his tracks. Works every time!
Probably going to be the most domestic out of the brothers. He enjoys cooking (and ain’t half bad at it either), shopping is a practical necessity, he’ll take care your pets like they were his own flesh and blood, etc.
There will even to be points where he’s in bed reading in the middle of the night with tea and reading glasses like some kind of grandma so take that image for what you will.
Satan is the prankster of the household, but he does his pranks more as a way to give grief to his enemies rather than for funsies. Be warned, if you poke this bear he will retaliate for sweet, sweet revenge and he has centuries worth of pranks behind him. Good luck.
It's a new party every night, sweetie, get used to it!
Asmo is the only other brother who has some amount of money to offer from his own trips to the human world, but it's just a modest amount.
Is totally willing to work to help pay for a nice place. He wants a building nice enough to host parties!
Would go back to modeling and maybe dip his toe into acting from time to time… He gets a lot of gigs (this IS the Avatar of Lust after all) so they won't be strapped for cash. Which is good, because Asmo is a very "business by day, but party every night" kind of person. 
Do know that his shopping is NOT going to slow down either. Keep an eye on the budget.
He’s also going to make friends wherever he goes so he’s going to want for them all to hang out at least somewhat regularly.
That being said, he can tone it down some if the MC so desires, just know that they can’t keep him cooped up in the apartment for too long or he’ll start getting antsy. You can’t keep this stallion locked up, MC, he needs to run free!!
Being with Asmo is going to be like having a free pass to whatever gathering the MC wants to go to, at least. He could even get them into red carpet events with just his sheer charisma, charm, and er-… “charms.” Who doesn’t want to meet their favorite actress or singer, eh?
But oh, sweetie, please don’t prank him! Life is too short to waste on silly games (he also just genuinely just doesn’t enjoy being messed with so best not do it).
Brave choice, MC, but quick question. How in the world are you going to pay your food bills???
Beel is a real sweetheart through and through but his stomach is NOT. That thing will eat them out of house and home! (Maybe even literally!!) Both of them are going to have to work and probably some pretty looong hours (cause he’s got no money either).
Honestly, Beel would be best as a personal trainer in the human world. He’s a pretty decent combination of tough but genuinely kind and motivating. (The fact that he’s pretty easy on the eyes would help out a lot too).
But the MC won’t have to worry about Beel sneaking off with someone just looking for some “quality time.” He’d take his job seriously, though he’s not particularly versed in what the human body can’t handle so only the really dedicated (or masochistic) would stick with him anyway.
“Good work last week, April! You did so well that we’re going to go from 500 pushups to a thousand! … I can see you’re worried, but I believe in you.”
But hey, he can deadlift well over 2,000 pounds without breaking a sweat so who has the balls to argue with him, anyway?
Trying out every restaurant in town would be a must. He’d even plan out vacations for them with the sole purpose of travelling the globe and tasting the different flavors. Food trips!!
He's neat enough since he used to tidy up a lot for Belphie so no need to worry about him picking up after himself (except for the occasional pile of wrappers. Toss those out unless you want ants)
I mean, you can prank Beel if you want. He'll be pretty good-natured about it as long as it stays harmless. Just don't ruin any of his food, got it?
So… Belphie makes for some excellent décor! Really he is great at laying around and looking fantastic just… he’s not that great at much else...
Realistically, choosing Belphie as a roommate is kind like having a high maintenance pet. He’s good for love and cuddles, but he’s not going to be helping with the bills or anything unless they whine incessantly about it.
If the MC can make enough for the both of them, then it should be fine. They won’t get upset and he won’t be crabby but if not… Oh boy.
Regular job Belphie is a needy Belphie. He’ll come back from whatever job he’s working, likely a night shift, and demand attention or cuddles right then and there. He needs to recharge those batteries, after all...
If he isn’t working then he's at his happiest. He can even pull off being a “househusband” of sorts. He’s not going to go above and beyond the call of duty, but he can keep the place clean, get a basic meal on the table (provided someone teaches him some human recipes), and get groceries if he needs to… You know, basic domestic shit.
They’re going to have to come to terms with the fact that, at some level, Belphie just doesn’t believe in “common curtesy” or “human decency.” If some neighbors are being too noisy for his liking, he will troll them to oblivion and beyond. He may even get sued for it if he takes it too far, so the MC will have to keep an eye on him…
He’s the House’s #2 prankster, but unlike Satan he doesn’t need any malice to be a little shit. The MC will be pranked and it will be at the most unexpected times. Be warned...
Check out my Masterlist for more!
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the-iceni-bitch · 9 months ago
Snowed In
Pairing: Ransom Drysdale x Female Reader
Word Count: 3726
Summary: You get stranded at the manor with Ransom and need to relieve the tension somehow!
Warnings: Explicit sexual content, explicit language, SMUT, dub-con (to be safe), angry sex, 18+
A/N: Happy Hoelidays, y’all! Can’t believe I’m posting my first fic ever! This fic has been floating around my brain as “me time” material for a while, and I figured this is the perfect time to put it to paper after finding the Happy Hoelidays challenge on @stargazingfangirl18​‘s wonderful page. Thanks so much for hosting, along with @navybrat817​ and @donutloverxo​! Any and all feedback appreciated!
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You’d been stuck in the manor with this giant man-child for almost a week now, your nerves were frayed to the limit. 
When Harlan Thrombey had offered to have you stay at his estate while he took the family on a Christmas trip around Europe, your gut instinct was to refuse. You’d been the sole veterinarian for all of his animals for almost 8 years now, but you still had your relief rounds and charity organization to run, and taking 2 months out to essentially lounge around the Massachusetts mansion and walk his two German Shepherds, Dupin and Smilla, especially around the busy holiday season, was not an option for you. But Harlan and your good friend Marta conspired with your techs and assistants, and they basically forced you to take some time off for the first time in 5 years.
 You couldn’t lie, you were looking forward to completely disconnecting from technology for the season, curling up with some fantastic books in front of a roaring fire, and baking some new historical recipes you thought you’d never get a chance to try. Even though there was no internet at the estate, you could still be reached for emergencies via cell phone if absolutely necessary, but everyone assured you they had everything under control. Harlan was even letting you bring your idiot golden retriever, Fionn, with you, as he was best buds with the shepherds. 
Then, only 3 days into your well-deserved vacation, Ransom showed up. 
It had just started snowing when that spoiled asshole pulled up to the house to “pick something up”. Why he thought driving that ridiculous beemer through the hills of Massachusetts during the middle of winter was a good idea, you couldn’t fathom. Harlan had arranged for a driver to drop you at the estate at the start of your visit, to further discourage you from trying to sneak away to work, so when the blizzard started, there was no way for either of you to leave. Of course, the sky proceeded to dump almost 3 feet of snow in one night, on top of a good coating of ice, so you were then stuck with a whining baby until the snow melted, a plow managed to work its way to you, or one of you killed the other. 
Right now, murder was seeming like a viable option. 
The snow had blown out cell service, which meant Ransom had no access to any of his social media, and he spent the majority of the day whining about the fact that he was bored. You tried getting him to read one of the many books in the library, join you in baking, a game of go, anything to shut him up, but he would lose interest almost immediately and start whining again. He initially refused to make any food for himself, but soon discovered that you were not going to be treated like his personal chef, and had to live off of toast and sandwiches if he didn’t want to say please and thank you. You were the one splitting wood, stoking the fire, and checking the plumbing daily to ensure there were no burst pipes or other issues, while he moped around on the couch. 
Today, the snow had finally slowed down, and you managed to convince him to go on a hike with you and the dogs. In spite of your insistence, he thought it would be fine to go out in just his jeans and wool coat. After 20 minutes of walking, he was whining about how cold he was, and made you all turn around to head back. You had to hold in your laughter when you had almost reached the house, and the dogs got too excited and knocked him into a snow drift. 
“I told you to wear layers!” you told him as you got a fire started. You instructed him to change out of his wet clothes and warm up as you went to put the dogs in the mud room and grab some more firewood. You stripped out of your snow gear down to your thermals, and headed back to the living room with a bundle of logs in your arms. 
“Motherfucker!” you exclaimed, almost dropping your armload of wood as you came back into the room. 
Ransom Drysdale was standing in front of the fire, wearing nothing but the artfully “worn” designer sweater he had put on that morning. 
“Such language, Y/N!” he said around a smirk as he looked over his shoulder at you. “I don’t remember you having such a mouth on you back in school.” 
That asshole would bring up high school right now. You were so young and stupid back then, following him around like a lost puppy, blatantly staring every chance you got. Apparently, his boredom had gotten to the point where he was going to start up his mind games. 
Too bad for him you had grown up, and weren’t too bad at the mind games yourself. 
You managed to regain your composure after your initial surprise, and without skipping a beat, strolled over the fire, knelt directly beside him, and started putting more logs on the fire, doing your best to ignore his hardening cock less than a foot away from your face. 
“Jesus, on your knees for me already?” 
You turned your head, looked at his cock, looked back up at his face, rolled your eyes, and stood up to walk to the kitchen. 
“Do you want a mug of tea?” you asked him nonchalantly as you turned away. 
His hand wrapped around your upper arm like a vice, spinning you around as he shoved you up against the wall. 
“You’re going to play hard to get now, really?” he hissed at you. “You think I haven’t seen you staring at me all week? I know you’ve wanted me for years, you even managed to worm your way into my family to get at me, and now you’re going to play the frigid bitch when I’m about to give you what you’ve wanted for so long.” He moved his knee in between your thighs to pin you further, and let go of your arm so he could start to lift the hem of your shirt and get to your breasts. 
Your full armed slap caught him off guard and he stumbled away from you. 
You couldn’t help yourself, you started laughing. The unbelievable sense of entitlement and cocked sureness was too much for you, even though you felt your nipples peaking and a pool of wet slickness between your legs. 
“Oh honey, you really think I’ve been pining for you since high school? I worked my way through my bachelor’s, veterinary science degree, opening my own practice and starting my own charity, but you were always in the back of my mind and in my heart?” You snarled at him. “All that work, the ridiculous amount of student debt, and putting myself in a field with one of the highest suicide rates was just because my pussy was weeping for you every night? Get over yourself Hugh.” 
The look of fury on his face was so worth it, even as he put a hand around your throat and tackled you to the floor. 
“You cunt!” he spat at you, pinning your wrists above your head with one hand. His eyed wandered down to your breasts as a wicked smile came over his countenance. “You’re really going to try to tell me you don’t want me when your body is acting like this?” he ripped your shirt up over your head and palmed your left breast before pinching your nipple, hard. “You didn’t even bother wearing a bra around me you stupid slut.” You couldn’t help yourself, you arched your back into his hand, gasping as he pawed at you. His hand moved down your torso and he shoved his hand under your leggings and into your thong, running his thick fingers over your slit, which was now sopping wet. “God Y/N, your whore pussy is so ready for me, I’m going to fucking ruin you.” 
He brought his face down to yours fast and assaulted your mouth with his. You’d had enough at this point and you bit down on his bottom lip, hard. He gasped in surprise and you grasped at your brief advantage, freeing your hands from his loosened grip, your gripped both of his wrists and wrenched them behind his back at the same time you squeezed his sides with your thighs and got the momentum to flip him over until you were on top, straddling him with his cock press up against his abdomen. 
Ransom glared up at you with a mixture of fury and shock. He was used to dating little petite things he could toss around the bedroom at his leisure, who would do anything to please him and always looked at him with a mixture of fear and awe.  You just looked at him with contempt. 
You grinned down at him as you started grinding against his cock, keeping his arms pinned to his side. He let out a guttural moan and threw back his head, screwing his eyes shut. 
“Listen up pretty boy, I’m not some little waif you can throw around like a sex doll. I’m not here for you to just wet your dick and go on with your day. You want something from me, you ask nicely. You make sure I’m good and warmed up before you try anything at all. And know this, I am not thinking about you, you’re barely even on my radar. I’ve got more important shit to take care of than obsessing over your cock.” You picked up your grinding pace as Ransom tried to buck his hips up into you. You curled over him and took his earlobe between your teeth as you purred in his ear. “And know this, asshole. You can play as rough as your want with me, but you better be able to take what you dish out. I spend half my days gelding horses and steering bulls, you can’t just manhandle me.” You run your teeth down his throat and he lets out a thin whine.
 “Please, Y/N…” 
“Please what?” you ask, slowing down your pace as you nip at his collar bone. You absolutely love the fact that he is begging you. 
“Please, please let me… shit!” he cries as you sink your teeth into his shoulder through his sweater. “Please let me fuck you” 
You stop your grinding and sit up over him. He is covered in a thin sheen of sweat and his face is flushed. He is panting like a dog and starts whining after your grinding ceases, trying to move his hips under you to get some form of friction. Pre-cum is leaking over the bottom edge of his sweater where you’ve pinned his cock to his abdomen. You haven’t seen anything this hot in a long time. 
“Alright honey.” You say, releasing his wrists and lifting yourself off him a bit to let him get situated. 
He lets out a long sigh and relaxes for a beat before whipping his sweater off in a frenzy. He sits up fast and almost drops you onto your back as he switches positions. He shoves his fingers down the sides of your leggings and panties and rips them off you. 
His large hands start skimming you all over before he settles his left hand on your breast and his right hand against your sopping cunt, running his fingers over your slit as you start mewling unintelligibly. 
“Fuck baby, you’re soaked” he says in a gravelly rasp. His pupils are lust blown as he stares at you, a thin ring of icy blue around pools of black. Without warning, he pulls you up into his lap and is kissing you hungrily, shoving his tongue down your throat before he starts licking and biting down your neck. One hand grabs your hair at the nape of your neck and yanks your head back, while the other has moved back to your pussy. 
He slips one finger inside and you let out a high pitched keen. “Fucking tight in here sweetheart. Been waiting to bury my fingers in the pussy all week.” You feel him grinning against your neck but you are past caring. You bury one of your hands in his hair as he slowly moves in and out, curling his finger against your sweet spot. You dip your other hand in your own juices, then wrap it around his cock and start pumping. 
You let out small cries when he adds a second, then a third finger, and when his thumb starts circling your swollen clit you scream.
 “Fucking knew it” he growls into your throat. He’s been slowly dipping his tongue in and out of the hollow there as he works your cunt and it’s driving you crazy. “Knew this pussy was just waiting for me.” The sounds that his fingers were making as he fucked them into you were obscene. 
“Shut the fuck up” you say as you dig your nails into the skin of his back and drag them down, increasing the pace with your other hand on his dick. You feel him start to twitch in your hand then feel hot ropes spurting across your stomach. 
He lets out a growl as he wraps one hand around your throat. You can feel yourself clenching around him as your orgasm builds, and when he bites down on your shoulder at the same time he drives his thumb into your clit, you come apart with a wordless cry. 
He keeps his fingers moving as you ride it out, then lets you sag back against the floor. 
“My turn” he says. 
Ransom flips you over unceremoniously and slaps you across the ass, hard. He didn’t get the scream he was hoping for, but the sharp gasp you let out is still enough to make his cock twitch and harden again. He lifts your hips up and brings your ass flush against him as he starts running his cock against your slit, coating himself in your arousal. You moan as his tip brushes across your swollen clit and you thrust your ass back into him, yearning for more friction. 
“Maybe I should make you beg for it” He says. “You really think you can call the shots here? Your cunt is so fucking soaked for me I should edge you for… ahh, fuck!” 
You decided to take matters into your own hands. You grab his cock and line him up, then shove yourself back onto it until he’s bottomed out. 
“I don’t have time for a monologue from you, douchebag.” You say to him over your shoulder as you wiggle your ass against him. “You need to fucking move.” 
You can tell he wants to get the upper hand back but you’re not about to let that happen. You straighten up with him still inside you and start slowly moving up and down. You can feel his chest hair scratching against your back as you fuck yourself on his cock. 
“God, you’re such a bitch. Fucking bossy even when you’re begging for it” he hisses into your ear. He moves one hand down to your hip and fucks up into you, hard. 
“Fuck, Hugh!” you know using that name is just going to piss him off, but to be honest, that’s kind of your goal. 
The only warning you have is a growl as he slams you forward into the rug and pins your face down with one hand. He lifts one knee so he has one foot planted on the floor, and lifts your hips slightly higher to keep them in line with his. The change is positions feels amazing, and you clench around him to let him know. 
“Fuck honey, you’re so fucking tight” he says as he starts rutting into you hard. “I’m going to make you come so fucking hard, you’ll be begging me to stop. You’re gonna be feeling me for days.” 
The pace he was setting was relentless and you found yourself having difficulty breathing regularly when all of a sudden Ransom grabbed you by the throat and whipped you up against himself so fast all the air was ripped out of your lungs. 
“That’s right honey” he murmured against your ear as he moved his other hand from your hip and started working your clit with his fingers as you continued mewling and whimpering. You could feel yourself fluttering around him. “God you’ve got a greedy cunt. It’s squeezing me so fucking tight and you’re making a mess.” 
You moaned as you leaned your head back against his shoulder. He picked up the pace even further and rotated your face so he could kiss you, moving his other hand from your throat to your breast as he worked your nipple in between his fingers. He swallowed your tiny cries as you pressed yourself further into his hand. 
You could feel it building fast, and knew it was going to be an inferno. Ransom sensed the hitches in your breath and started fucking you even harder, his fingers on your clit moving faster and faster. 
“You going to come all over my cock you greedy slut?” He asked against your lips. “This pussy is mine and you better not forget it.” 
Just to remind him who was making the rules here, you took his lip between your teeth as you came, biting down so hard you drew blood. 
“Shit!” He sputtered as your pussy spasmed around him and you rode out your orgasm. You started laughing at his exclamation when he pulled out of you suddenly, eliciting a groan at the loss. 
He flipped you onto your back and slammed your head into the ground, pinning you by your neck as he pumped his cock a foot away from your face.
“I’m going to cover you in cum like the filthy slut you are” he hissed, blood flecked spittle hitting you in the chest. You saw his cock starting to twitch as his pace became irregular and knew exactly what to do to catch him off guard. You moved one hand down to you thoroughly ruined pussy and began working it yourself while your other hand palmed your breast. This threw him over the edge and thick ropes of cum started to coat your face. To add a last twist of the knife, you opened your mouth. 
“Fuck, Y/N!!” he cried as you did your best to catch everything he was giving you. He finally laid back, exhausted, after covering your chest and face with white ribbons. 
You laughed giddily as you fucked yourself on your own fingers, using your other hand to scoop his cum off your skin and into your mouth. He couldn’t take his eyes off you the entire time, and it only took you a few seconds to reach your final orgasm and you clenched around your fingers with a low moan. You let out a small shiver when you were finished, and crawled over where he was leaned against the couch. You straddled him quickly and tipped his head back to kiss him. When he opened himself for you, you spat his remainder in before shoving your tongue in and using it to coat his whole mouth. Then you pulled away and held his jaws closed with one hand. 
“Swallow.” You said in a low purr, staring directly into his eyes. 
He stared at you for a second, and you could see him weighing his options. He finally surrendered though, and you felt his throat constrict as he swallowed his own cum. 
Thoroughly pleased with yourself, you stood up and stretched as far as you could. You could feel stinging sensation along your shoulder, where Ransom had bitten you, and you figured you should head to the bathroom to get that cleaned up before an infection set in. You saw several of your own marks on Ransom’s torso as well, and figured you should help him get cleaned up too. 
The fire was starting to die down at this point, so you added a few more logs and stoked it when you got back from the bathroom. 
“Your clothes should be dry now” you said as you rinsed out one of the deeper bites you had left and applied some Neosporin. Ransom still hadn’t moved from his seated position and was just staring at you, dazed. “I’m going to take a shower, you’re welcome to join if you want” 
He still didn’t move but his eyes narrowed at you. He finally took the towel you left next to him to clean himself off and spat into it several times. 
“You fucking bitch, I’m going to ruin you. You think you get to do that to me! I swear to god I’ll…” 
You cut him off by shoving your tongue down his throat and tweaking his nipple. Now that you were down off your emotional high, you took your time taking in the sight of him. His manufactured bed head was now authentic sex hair, damp with sweat and falling into his eyes. His chest was heaving, which only managed to highlight his unbelievably well developed torso, which tapered in an amazing V shape and was dusted in curly brown hair. Thick thighs that looked like they would burst any pair of jeans meant to contain them. And of course, the icing on the cake, his pretty cock. Even flaccid it was impressive, and it was still coated in a film of your arousal.
 “Listen sweetheart, I think what you wanted to say was ‘Thank you for two amazing orgasms.’ Now, if you feel like pouting that’s fine but do it somewhere else. Or, you can join me for a shower, and I’ll let you fuck my face and give you numbers three and four, how does that sound?”
 Ransom hated the fact that his cock was hardening again already. All he wanted to do was bend you over the couch and fuck you until you were crying. He watched your ass as you sauntered off to the bathroom, then stood up to follow you. He was definitely going to get you back for this, he just had to work out how.
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moonlit-imagines · a year ago
Headcanons for Friends to Lovers with Rodrick Heffley
Rodrick Heffley x reader
warnings: mentions of a bad home life
prompt: y/n and rodrick have been friends for a long time, so long boundaries seem to be blurred
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you’ve actually known rodrick since elementary school
it all started when he asked you to join his band
“i can play drums, you can play the tambourine because that’s the only other instrument i have! it’ll be wicked!”
your band lasted a week and only had one gig, it was for rodrick’s parents
who LOVED you by the way
they somehow permitted you to sleepover almost every other day, you practically lived at their house
FOR YEARS you did this
terrorizing lil greg
“what’s he gonna do, pee his diaper?”
always trick or treating together, exchanging candy when you got back go his house (or occasionally yours)
you guys didnt like hanging at your house, your parents were kind of....a lot to handle
starting middle school together, wreaking havoc on all the teachers
rodrick did it to impress you, according to mr. and mrs. heffley
but he’d give you a stupid little smirk from across the classroom after he got scolded so you believed them
whenever anyone gave you shit at school, rodrick wouldn’t hesitate to step in and show them who’s boss
“rodrick, you’re gonna get detention again!”
“yeah, well, i’m not gonna let them be mean to you”
you went to his house after school most days, sometimes you’d get there first while he was in detention
mrs. heffley had after school snacks
“y/n, why don’t you play some video games with greg while you wait for rodrick to get home?”
playing wii sports with greg, who cried when you won
you also had time to do homework while you waited, rodrick usually copied afterwards
when rodrick came home, he’d drag you to the garage to show you his drum skills
he hit himself in the head with his drumstick
“ooh, that’s gonna leave a mark”
next step was high school, which was a weird step up
but you guys had each other
you still spent most nights at the heffley residence, but you had to sleep on the couch instead of on the floor in the attic (aka rodricks lair)
“you two are growing up, so we think it’s best that you don’t sleep in the same room together, right?”
rodrick emptied one of his drawers for you to put your clothes in
but you still end up stealing his clothes half the time
“i wish i could be mad, but you wear all of my clothes better than me”
subconsciously doing couple-y things without realizing it
like rodrick would pull you closer to him when you two were together, put his arm around you, give you his jacket, etc
“are you guys serious? you’ve got to be dating!” -everyone
“rodrick, when are you and y/n going to get together?” -mr. and mrs. heffley
the answer was always the same: “we’re just friendssssss”
watching his band practice and cheering him on no matter what
you’re his guest vocals ☺️
when he got the van, it was a whole new world for you guys
you could go out wherever whenever
(with parent approval usually)
“wanna go ride around for a little while? hit a gas station and get a bunch of candy?”
“do you even have to ask?”
watching scary movies in his room
“platonic” cuddling in his bed
stuffing your face in the crook of his neck during scary scenes
“come on, y/n! it’s not that bad!”
him having to hold onto you for comfort so you’d keep watching with him
sometimes falling asleep together and his mom or dad coming to check on you later
“alright, time for bed! y/n, you get your usual couch...”
laughing your ass off at rodrick when he messes with greg
manny loves you, sometimes rodrick is jealous of the attention you give to his baby brother instead of him
rodrick scooping you up in his arms when you least expect it, never fails to make you scream
“hey there, hot stuff”
“you’re impossible!”
roller skating together, he held your hand the whole time bc he was worried you’d fall
his friends ENDLESSLY taunt him over your relationship
when he makes plans with others, he always says “let me ask y/n first” which just SENDS his friends oh my god
“dude, that’s your s/o!”
“no, they’re not! shut up!”
hating being apart a lot its so stressful
sometimes you’d have a pretty hard time at home and show up to his house at odd hours, but you were always welcome
you have your own key
“hey, what’s wrong?”
“my parents...they’re just the worst”
rodrick knows its bad when you start crying
he took you up to his room and played some music (quietly as not to wake the house)
you laid on top of him while he rubbed your back and told you that he was there for you
dozing off on him, as per usual
dude, the amount of pictures you have? astronomical
you playing his drums, the two of you going 🤘, an actual nice picture of you guys, him carrying you on his back, kiddos on your first day of school by year, you kissing his cheek “platonically”
comforting him when he was having his own hard times, whether it be an argument with his parents/greg, difficulties with musical inspiration, or anything else
“come here, you need a hug”
“i need several”
“you’ll get ‘em”
talent show! talent show! talent show!
you completely cussed out the rest of his band before they went on bc they had the audacity to replace him
but greg managed to save the day
“greg, my dude, give me a high five, that was awesome”
he wasn’t actually half bad but like, his mom kinda stole the show
more joyrides in the van
absolutely BLASTING the music in there while you and rodrick sat on the floor in the back and ate the taco bell you’d just picked up
“dude, you gotta try my potato griller, it’s a godsend”
“okay, but try this slushie, its so good. i mean, not as good as a 7-eleven slushie, but it’s up there”
finishing your food and laying in the van for another hour bc you just loved each other’s company
but after sitting together alone for so long, you felt like there was something left to do, what was it?
you and rodrick were moving around a bunch and ended up next to each other sitting against the wall of the van
you looked over at each other and hesitated before leaning in to kiss
and you guys kissed for a while
okay, so, you made out on the floor of his van with led zeppelin playing in the background
it wasn’t awkward or anything, just long overdue
okay it was a little awkward actually
“well, that was” *clears throat* “that was cool or whatever”
“yeah...wanna do it again?”
“oh, for sure”
not like it was a surprise to anyone when you announced you were FINALLY dating
“wait, you guys just started dating? i thought you’d been together for like, at least 5 years” -mr. heffley
“this is great! obviously, we’ll need to set up some boundaries so that everyone is comfortable and safe, but yay for young love!” -mrs. heffley
“gross” -greg
mrs. heffley wrote a column in the newspaper about you titled “my teenage son’s fantastic significant other”
not much changed after you and rodrick got together, just kissing, “i love you’s” and more teasing from friends and school faculty
“we were all rooting for you two, actually!” -the teachers
summer vacation with him
it was always SWEET
going to the pool together, he’d usually lay out on the chairs with you but you were able to drag him into the pool a few times
“come onnnn, it’ll be funnnn”
“you’re lucky you’re cute”
hugs from behind!!! kisses on the top of ur head!!!!
seeing rodrick in a tux was too funny for you, you almost couldn’t stop laughing (especially at the eyeliner he insisted on wearing)
but he just couldn’t stop staring at you
“what?! you’re stunning!”
honestly, prom wasn’t all it was cracked up to be
you danced like maniacs for a few songs and ended up ditching early on
but you did end up renting a bunch of movies and getting tonssss of snacks and changing into pajamas as soon as you got to his house
im talking popcorn, candy bars, ice cream, cans of pop, chips, chicken nuggets and so on
and also passing out on each other
“i think i love you a little more, i didn’t know that was possible”
“i have that effect on people”
he makes u breakfast before his mom gets the chance though
“pancakes? for me?”
“i put chocolate chips in them too, you’re gonna love them”
(they were a lil bit burned, still good tho)
you guys really did just spot on get each other
okay but i know you also roast each other sometimes so ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
relationship goals, honestly
fresh outta ideas 🤠 goodnight
1K notes · View notes
ninja-knox-ur-sox-off · 4 months ago
Or afternoon
Or evening
you know what, forget that
BACK WITH ANOTHER KNOX REACTS CAUSE DOING THIS GIVES ME AN OUTLET FOR THE BULK OF MY SCREAMS, AND YOU GUYS SEEM TO LIKE IT (which I’ve said before, but keep saying anyways because I’m still shooketh that y’all vibe with my rambles lol lov u)
I gotta say, I’m so used to funky uploads and episodes being out of order, or released all at once that this whole ‘weekly release’ thing is kinda new to me, but I am absolutely VIBIN with it!! WEEKLY SEROTONIN HECK FREAKING YEAH
Minor Scale
Fun fact, these episodes take me around an hour to watch each cause I pause it to write and stim and generally freak out.
Also, why is he talking to him outside???? Not that there’s anything wrong with people seeing you talk to thin air but…
Oh he might be in the back alley or something, that would make sense.
Shhhhuuurrre…. use training as an excuse. It’s certainly not because you want to talk to your monkey dad because you miss him AKSDMF;AOHG;OAWEF
WHAT ON EARTH ARE YOU DOING, WUKONG. If it weren’t for the fact that it’s Mk I would say that you’re not very convincing but well… it’s Mk laksmd;foaweif He’s smort, but still a little oblivious. Wonder if he’ll feel guilty later for not knowing that Monkey King wasn’t actually on vacation. I could see him blaming himself for not seeing it, but not Monkey King for not telling lol klsdmf;aoew
Man, this theme of light happy episodes coupled with Sun Wukong doing THAT is giving me WHIPLASH A;LSKDFM;O;OAEWHFAWE
*zooms in on the staff twice * *just in case you missed it*
“At least lighten up a little, your creepy whisper business is getting on my nerves” SPIDER QUEEN THAT IS THE MOST VALID THING YOU’VE SAID ASLK;DMAGH;AOWEF
Though actually, he as a tab, so now that I’m saying this, I’m actually realizing that none of the noodles Tang eats are free and he just has yet to pay for them
Yoikes, I’d hate to see this dude’s tab l;KFMWAE;OFH;AWEF
(I will not go through every episode and tally up how many bowls of noodles he’s eaten and how much the average bowl of noodles costs and find out just how much he owes since the first episode. I will not.)
It’s Tang, isn’t it.
If it’s Tang again I’ma l;KMGA;OHOAWEF
I love how they recognized him despite the fact his picture looks almost nothing like him klMD;OHOAWEF
“Well, maybe if someone was here to TEACH ME—“ I know he was talking about the shrinking thing but my brain included washing hands and I— LKFM;OAWHGOAWE MK, HAS NO ONE EVER TAUGHT YOU HOW TO WASH YOUR HANDS??? ARE YOU OKAY??
(silly question, he’s clearly traumatized)
But like, man, I guess he really did just have to think small LKFMVAF;OWEF
Or perhaps extremely lucky as you might be able to catch a glimpse of what’s happening inside and do something about it.
“Soooorry, can’t hear you over the sound of me RUSHING DESTINY” ASLKDFMAO;IWHGO;WIFMWEF
This is a nice speech, Mk, but I’m pretty sure you’re gonna see one and completely flip
*looks around *
*sees I forgot water bottle inside*
*presses play*
Huh, I really thought he was gonna stay small the whole time but he really just said no <3 GOOD FOR YOU, BUDDY
But far, I get really loud when I’m scared too. Makes you feel bigger skmfoawe
Watching these two interact like *internal screaming*
Mk’s little sound he makes when he sees something like this is honestly one of my favourite things ever klMFAOWEF
WHAT DO I EVEN SAY TO THIS????????????????
I just
Wanna take a minute to appreciate the warm, welcoming, homey atmosphere of Pigsy’s shop.
It’s been hours and Tang is still there eating aksdfma;ogh;oweaf
Aw, man, Mk ;A;
67 notes · View notes
meiansmistress · 5 months ago
The Build-up | Wanderlust Chapter Three
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you are so fed up with the increasing demand and workload at your job as the head of public relations at a well-known and established media company. a secluded cabin surrounded by nature in a faraway town is just what you need to get your mind away from work, not knowing what you might encounter there...
pairing: lumberjack!hajime iwaizumi x f!reader (main), iwaoi (past)
series warnings: lumberjack!au, bisexual!iwa, virgin!reader, ex-boyfriend playboy!oikawa, fluff, angst, mutual pining, smut (in later chapters—nsfw 18+ mdni), aged-up characters, spoiler alert for some characters with the same post-timeskip jobs
notes: this work is written in collaboration with my amazing and wonderful fellow sinner, sister tina @kurinoot​ <3 odd chapters will be posted by me on this blog, while even chapters will be posted on her blog!
taglist:  @vanille–kiss, @rosesandtoshi, @chibi-chanforever, @ssrated1volleyballplayer, @hismilkbread, @miki-snake, @chicoree, @xmyshya, @kurosukii, @hoe4hq, @plump-peach, @ysatrap​, @meri-soni-meri-tamanna​
if you would like to be added to the taglist, please message either one of us.
masterpost ✿ chapter one  ✿ chapter two  ✿ chapter three  ✿ chapter four  ✿ chapter five  ✿ chapter six  ✿ chapter seven  ✿ chapter eight  ✿ chapter nine  ✿ chapter ten  ✿ chapter eleven  ✿ chapter twelve (fin)
This is the caretaker? You try not to stare as you follow him back toward the cabin, but it’s incredibly difficult. Sweat beads on his skin from what you assume is early morning work, his shirt clings to his built body and makes you gulp, and his arms… Oh God, his arms. He has his hands stuffed in his pockets as he leads you, and you can see the flex of his muscles whenever he turns back to make sure you’re still following him. 
Eventually you emerge out of the trees to see the cabin, just as you left it that morning. In the morning light twinkling through the pine tree needles, it looks even more beautiful. The one-story home is made of large dark wood logs, surrounded by neatly trimmed bushes in the mulch around the porch. The leaves of the trees surrounding the cabin sway in the light breeze and the air is crisp and fresh as you take a deep breath. It’s perfect.
“Thank you for leading me back,” you smile at him, fingers tightening around the flute you have in front of your chest. “Let me make you breakfast for your hospitality.”
“It’s not a problem,” Iwaizumi shakes a hand in your direction to decline. “Just doing my job as caretaker. I should get back to work.”
“You can’t do work on an empty stomach!” You argue, gesturing with your flute to the front door. “At least have some tea before you go. I brought chamomile with me, if that’s okay?”
Is that too obvious? You can feel heat bloom in your cheeks and you hope to God he can’t see your blush. You don’t want him to leave just yet—and yeah, your mother always warned you about stranger danger, but he seems like a really nice person. One you can trust for at least an hour while you make breakfast and eat together. 
He smiles at you—a lopsided grin that makes your heart speed up against your will. He gestures toward the door with his hand, and once you both begin walking up the stairs of the porch, he says, “Alright, but I’ll be the one cooking for you. You’re my guest.”
“No!” You pout at him, grabbing the key from your pocket and shaking it in his direction. “See? I have the key, so this is my cabin.”
“But I built this cabin, so it’s definitely mine.”
“Yeah, but I’m staying for two weeks, so it’s my cabin until then, which means as soon as you step through the front door, you’re my guest. So you have to agree or you can’t come in.”
Your banter makes him chuckle, and Iwaizumi puts a hand over his mouth, rubbing at his lips to hide the smile that’s stuck there. There’s definitely a blush on your cheeks now, especially when he throws up his hands as if he’s accepted his defeat. 
You unlock the front door and scurry inside, mind already running wild with food you can cook that will knock the socks off your extremely attractive caretaker. 
Iwaizumi watches you closely as you scramble the eggs in the pan, humming to yourself as you work. He hasn’t had someone cook for him since he moved out of his parents’ house as soon as he turned 20. (Paying for food at Fukunaga’s restaurant aside.) In almost a year of dating, Oikawa never even once bothered to even toast a piece of damn bread. Even if he tried, he’s sure it would have been a burnt, inedible mess anyway.
Maybe that’s why he had so readily agreed to let you provide for him. His half-drunk chamomile tea sits steaming before him on the table, next to your empty cup and unused tea bag. He’s not even a tea person—much preferring strong black coffee—but he couldn’t say no, not when you’d immediately started the kettle and placed the bag in front of him.
“I hope this is okay,” you say as you bring two plates over, one full of scrambled eggs and grilled sausage and one stacked with toasted and buttered bread. “I can do much more with other groceries.”
“This is perfect. I wasn’t sure what you liked so I got the basics.” 
“Oh, that’s totally fine!” You smile as you sit across from him. You sure are cute with your pink cheeks and your hair tied into a high ponytail, but he keeps that comment to himself. “I just meant for next time.”
“Next time?” Iwaizumi muses as he takes a bite of the sausage. He hadn’t realized he was hungry until it disappeared in another two bites. “Does that mean you’re inviting me back?”
“Well, you did say it’s your cabin,” you grin at him before you let out a sigh. “Actually, I’ve only been here half a day and I already feel so much better. I didn’t know how much I needed a break.” 
“What do you do for work then?”
“I’m a public relations supervisor. I manage a handful of projects which means I never get a break. This is the longest vacation I’ve taken since I was promoted two years ago.”
Iwaizumi tilts his head curiously. “You look pretty young though.”
“The youngest supervisor in company history, or so I’m told. It means I have to work even harder for people to take me seriously. Ugh.”
Pretty, hard-working, good at cooking, and already persistent. It’s like he’s dining with his girlfriend rather than someone he only met an hour ago. The thought makes him scowl. I really need to stop hanging around Terushima. 
“D-did I say something weird?”
Shit. You must have seen the scowl on his face and thought it was directed at you. 
“Oh, no, sorry. Just thinking about how shitty it must be.”
You shrug as you take a bite of your toast. “That’s why I’m here and I’m glad I am! This place is even more beautiful than the pictures and the service has been fantastic. You said you built the cabin yourself?” When he nods, you sigh wistfully. “That’s amazing. I’m really impressed!”
“It was my grandfather’s land. He’s the one that taught me woodworking.”
“You do woodworking too? Is there anything you can’t do?”
Yeah, keep my ex-boyfriend’s dick in his pants, is what he wants to say but he swallows that back with the last swig of his lukewarm tea. There’s no point in thinking of Oikawa, not when you’ve done more for him in the last hour or two than he did in a whole year. 
It’s really sad, now that Iwaizumi thinks about it. He loved Oikawa—that much was certain. Making frequent trips to the city to see him, always buying the presents he asked for, taking him out whenever he requested it. Shittykawa could be infuriating and annoying almost all of the time, but one kiss and whisper of I love you, Iwa-chan as they lay sweaty and entangled in bed together and Iwaizumi could overlook all of that. 
Except it didn’t fill the emotional hole Iwaizumi didn’t know was carved deep into his heart. Oikawa almost never came to the cabin, much preferring the city and its underground club scene. He’d ‘listen’ to his stories, but if Iwaizumi ever asked a follow-up question or needed an opinion, Oikawa would never have an answer for him. Half of his friends didn’t like his ex very much, and that should have been the glaring sign he needed, but Iwaizumi ignored all that.
For love. 
Funny how you’ve shown him more love over the course of the morning—even as a near stranger. 
“I’m not very good at music. My high school music teacher always hated me because I could never read the sheet music.”
“Wait, really? I can teach you the basics if you’d like!” 
The smile that lights up your face makes Iwaizumi feel bad for declining. “Nah, no need.”
“It’s not a problem! I brought some music with me for my flute, so I could—”
He moves without thinking. He grabs your wrist just as you start to get up from your seat, and you turn to him with wide eyes and pink cheeks. It’s cute how headstrong you are, even at his expense. 
“You keep the sheet music and play for me next time you see me.” 
“Oh.” Your face grows even redder, and Iwaizumi thinks you could probably rival the cherry tomatoes in the fridge that he bought for you at the store. “A-alright, I can do that.”
You slowly slide back into your chair, shyly tucking a lock of hair that’s fallen from your ponytail behind your ear. You finish your food while chatting about his woodworking day job, and once everything is cleaned up, Iwaizumi doesn’t have any more reason to linger. He wants to so badly; he would much rather stay here with you, talking about everything than go back to be on his own in the woods, but his commissions won’t make themselves. 
Just as he’s about to head out the door, he turns to you, stuffing his hands inside his pockets. “There’s an open area just past the river we were at earlier. I put some tree stumps there to sit when I need a break. You can play your flute there if you want. It’s up to you.”
“Oh!” Your eyes brighten at his recommendation. “That sounds perfect! Thank you so much.”
With a last thank you and goodbye, Iwaizumi stalks back into the woods, trying to fight the smile that keeps rising to his face.
Sure, he told you about the open area to play your flute in, but what he didn’t tell you is that he’ll be there bright and early tomorrow morning, waiting for you to show up.
The field Iwaizumi mentioned is on the opposite bank of the river—a small clearing with three large tree stumps cut and sanded to be makeshift chairs. Small pink and white flowers litter the grass, and the caretaker himself sits in the grass, his hands gripping a handsaw as he saws his way through a large piece of wood.
You can’t help but smile as you slip off your shoes to wade through the shallow water. Iwaizumi had been less than subtle yesterday when he mentioned the area, and you’d spent a good portion of the afternoon considering if it was an invitation and eventually settled on: it certainly was.
This morning you made way too many sandwiches for one person so you hoped you weren’t wrong after all, but seeing him now makes you breathe out a sigh of relief. Flute case clutched in one hand, shoes and basket in the other, you carefully walk through the water to emerge on his left. 
“Good morning, Iwaizumi-san!”
He turns as soon as you greet him and gives you a stiff nod, but you can see his lips twitching as you settle next to him on one of the logs. 
“What are you making today?”
“A rocking chair.”
“Oh wow! Can I watch?”
Iwaizumi looks taken aback, his eyebrows crinkling when he glances up at you. Did you say something strange again? Come on too strong? Then you notice the smallest bit of pink on his cheeks—did you make the caretaker blush? There’s no way. It has to be from the warm morning.
“If you want to.”
You spend the morning watching him work, entranced by the way he so easily saws the wood, hammers the nails in, and slowly builds the top of the rocking chair. When he takes a break for some water, you pull out your flute and play bits and pieces of The Garden of Adonis, or at least what you can remember from it. Sometimes you’ll stop and apologize for messing up, but Iwaizumi only smiles and goes back to his work. 
By the time your sandwiches are all eaten and his chair is halfway done, you decide it’s time to head back to the cabin and leave him on his own. You pack up all your things and bid him goodbye, but his parting words make you falter in your step.
“Thank you for playing for me.”
Huh? You remember stuttering a generic response before making your way back through the woods toward the cabin. Your chest is tight, your pulse racing and your stomach flipping when you remember his lop-sided grin as you left. It only hits you when you get back inside and take a seat in one of the plush chairs. 
Appreciation. The caretaker has shown more appreciation for your work in the past two days than any of your co-workers have in the past two years. At work, it’s expected that you’ll handle everything so people always take your hard work for granted—that much is obvious by how many e-mails and messages you have sitting ignored on your phone. But the caretaker here…
It’s only been a short while, but you already know it’s going to be hard to leave when the time comes.
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minghaocouture · 9 months ago
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Pairing: Jeon Wonwoo x Gender Neutral Reader Genre: Fake Dating AU, Fluff, the tiniest of angst Warning: N/A WC: 3k+
A/N @babiemingoo​ THIS IS FOR YOU SWEETIE! MERRY CHRISTMAS AND I WUB UUUUUU! <33333 I hope this is okay lol. I have NEVER written a fake dating au before so it might be trash T^T but i hope you like it anyway!
Weddings, most everyone loves them. They’re a time of love and happiness. So when your brother called to tell you that he was finally getting married to his high school sweetheart, you were overjoyed!
“So do I need to mark down a plus one for you? Or are you still single?” You knew in your heart that he was just being an older brother and teasing you, but that didn’t mean it stung any less. So before you could stop yourself you lied.
“Hey, don’t jump to conclusions. I’ve got a...boyfriend.”
“You hesitated. I honestly don’t believe it.” He retorted, chuckling a bit.
“Dude, I said I have a boyfriend so you better put down that I have a plus one.” You ordered, crossing your free arm over your chest as you continued to hold your phone with the opposite one.
That conversation was a week ago, and you had yet to find anyone willing to pretend to be your boyfriend. You’d even asked your lab partner Chan! The boy looked so apologetic when you asked, telling you that his girlfriend would have his head if she found out. 
Now here you were, standing outside of your roommate’s door. Hand hesitantly lifted in preparation to knock on the hard word, but you were unable to follow through with the action. You had avoided asking your roommate, Wonwoo, to be your date. After all, it might be awkward and make him uncomfortable and then you might have to find another roommate. You honestly didn’t want that, but at this point he was your only hope. 
So swallowing your fear and what little pride you had left, you quickly knocked on his door. It was silent for a moment before you heard his deep voice calling out, giving you permission to enter. 
Pushing open the door you leaned against the door frame, eyes glancing over the relatively clean room until they landed on the brunette as he sat at his computer desk. Dressed in a simple pair of sweatpants and a tank top that hung loose on his rather slender frame, his thick brown hair was pushed up out of his face and it definitely looked like he hadn’t brushed it today, while his thick rimmed glasses sat snugly on his nose.
“What’s up?” He questioned, eyeing you in confusion. Usually you did your best to not bother him when he’s in his room, knowing that he was usually either studying or gaming in some form and that if you needed him you should just message him unless it’s an emergency. You weren’t sure if it counted as an emergency but it sure felt like it.
“Hey sorry, but I have a huge favor to ask.”
“No.” The words left his lips before you could even utter your request. Without any care he turned his chair back around to face the computer in front of him, leaving you to stare open mouthed and wide eyed at the black leather of his computer chair. 
“I didn’t even get to ask yet!” You exclaimed, taking a few steps into the room and ending up right behind his chair. “You at least have to hear me out!” 
“I mean I don’t.” his deep voice muttered as his fingers clacked away on the keyboard, showing that he was fully intent on ignoring you. 
“Nunu please! I’ll pay for your half of groceries of a month!”
The clacking stopped and slowly he turned in his chair to fix his gaze upon you. 
“Make it two month and I’ll hear you out.”
Two months of groceries just for him to listen to the request, that didn’t even mean he would go through with it. You felt your bank account weep as you let out a deep sigh.
“Fine, two months. So will you listen to me?” His gaze didn’t leave you as he nodded, urging you to continue. “Okay so you know my brother right? Mingyu? Well...he’s getting married in like a week or so and he wants me to go and I-”
“If i have to be your fake boyfriend you better be prepared to do my house chores for at least a month, on top of the groceries.” You knew this wouldn’t be easy but at this point you were desperate. 
“Fine! Two months of groceries, a month of your chores. Just please please be my fake boyfriend for my brother’s wedding!”
“If we’re late it’s going to be your fault!” You heard Wonwoo call from your shared living room. You were putting the finishing touches on your outfit for the wedding, having gotten out the best outfit for the event. You wanted to make sure you looked fantastic for this. You were also admittedly a bit anxious that either you or Wonwoo would slip up. 
Sure you guys had gone through your ‘love story’, about how the two of you moved in together when your mutual friend Seungcheol had suggested it, since he knew you both needed roommates, and how the two of you ended up slowly falling in love over the course of the year. It was basically a fool proof story, basically. 
“If you take any longer I’ll just go on my own and enjoy the free food.” 
With a groan you made your final adjustments to your attire before rushing out of the room. You weren’t sure that Wonwoo would actually leave you but you weren’t going to take the chance that he would. 
Though the sight that met you in the living room was not one you had expected. 
Normally when you thought of Wonwoo, you imagined your frumy roommate probably in some kind of oversized sweater, his hair a bit messy and his glasses firmly on display. He wasn’t ugly or anything, but you had never been put into a situation where his attractiveness was fully on display.
Today though, his hair was actually brushed and styled to where the dark brown locks covered just a bit of his forehead. His suit jacket and matching trousers were a rich brown that reminded you of the color of dark chocolate, just a few shades darker than his hair. His pure white shirt was buttoned all the way to his neck and a cross-over tie fit perfectly the finish off his outfit. To your surprised, his glasses were nowhere to be seen and you were fairly sure that this was the first time you had ever seen him with contacts in. Needless to say, you were a bit stunned. This also gave Wonwoo a bit of time to examine you.
“You clean up nice.” He muttered turning away from you so that he could grab your keys out of the bowl next to the door where they were kept. Turning back to you, he tossed them and by some miracle you did in fact catch them. 
“Uh...yeah, you do too.” You said, finally catching yourself starting. Quickly you tried to stop the rapid throbbing of your heart but it definitely didn’t want to listen to you. Probably the nerves. “I’m surprised you actually brushed your hair.”
Your words brought a deep chuckle from the man as he followed you out the door, making sure to lock it behind him. 
“Well, I’m meeting my significant other’s family for the first time. Gotta make a good impression.” 
His words caused a series of butterflies to erupt into your stomach. This was going to be a long day.
The ceremony went about as good as expected, your mother basically sobbing out of happiness during the entire ceremony. To keep up appearances, Wonwoo kept your hand laced with his own and to your surprise that was all you could think about. His skin on yours, it was ridiculous how fixated you seemed to be on it.
As the reception began and your brother and his new wife started making the rounds, receiving congratulations and large hugs. As he saw your table, he made a beeline straight for you, pulling you into a tight hug and lifting your feet off of the ground in the process. Either you were hearing things or that for some reason caused Wonwoo to laugh ever so slightly.
“Okay okay you got your hug Gyu, put me down.” Your elder brother cackled before planting your feet firmly back onto the floor. As soon as he let go, his eyes were on your ‘boyfriend’. He gave Wonwoo a good once over, obviously sizing him up. 
“You know, when they told me they had a boyfriend I thought they had made you up.” He declared with a hearty laugh before extending his hand and introducing himself. “I’m Mingyu, it’s nice to meet you. Wish that one had mentioned you sooner.” 
Wonwoo took his hand and firmly shook it, a soft smile on his face. 
“Well, they told me all about you. I’m Wonwoo, by the way.” This part was surprisingly truthful. You had given him a run down of your family so that he wouldn’t be caught off guard by anyone coming up to meet him. It was better than letting him go in blind. 
“Well, you better take care of them or I’ll be on your ass. I’m the only one that gets to mess with my sibling? Got that?” 
“Mingyu, are you seriously giving him the shovel your own wedding?”
Mingyu looked over at you, almost appalled that you would think any less of him.
“Of course! I’m still your big brother, I’m not on vacation just because I’m at my wedding. Besides, my darling will understand.” The mention of his beloved wife seemed to change his whole demeanor. You of course knew his wife, they had been dating for quite a few years and she had been to so many family gatherings it was almost like they had been married before this.
With a laugh, you gave him a quick shove. 
“Well you better hurry back, or she’ll get bored without you.” Rushing him away was mostly so that he would lay off his whole big brother routine. Glancing over at Wonwoo though, he didn’t seem to mind. In fact you could almost describe the smile on his face as a fond one. It was...nice.
As your brother left, you caught Wonwoo’s gaze flickering towards the dance floor. He didn’t say anything though and a silence fell over the two of you. It was strange, back at home you never had any problems talking to him. Yet here it seemed like your throat had completely closed up, no words able to leave it. 
“He seemed nice.”
“Oh, Mingyu? He’s an ass, but he’s honestly the best brother I could ask for. Honestly, you two would probably get along pretty well.” You explained, thinking about how their personalities would probably compliment each other pretty well. This led to...other thoughts, thoughts of Wonwoo coming to family gatherings as if he were actually  your boyfriend. It wasn’t a bad thought in the slightest, was a thought you were hoping to avoid. 
He hummed softly in agreement, his eyes once again gazing back over at the dance floor. This time, swallowing your anxiety and uncertainty you spoke up again.
“Did you...want to dance?” Instantly his eyes were on you and you quickly covered for yourself, voice quieting down to a whisper so that the only one who would hear you would be him. “I would probably be good at making this more believable. I also think I see my mom coming over.” You muttered. Meeting your mother wouldn’t be a bad thing, but it was definitely something you wanted to put off. 
Not answering your invitation, Wonwoo stood and extended his hand out to you. His dark brown eyes bore into yours. Glancing over at your advancing mother, you quickly took his hand and he led you out onto the dance floor. The slow melody playing through the speakers surprisingly had your heart racing, or was that caused by the hand that now gently gripped your waist? For your sanity and the sake of your home situation, you decided to say it was the music. 
The music seemed to flow through the two of you as your bodies slowly grew closer and closer until you were chest to chest. It felt like time had all but stopped around the two of you, all you could see was Jeon Wonwoo, your nerdy roommate and the man who was somehow sweeping you off your feet (metaphorically, of course). It was right there, in his arms, that you realized what a bad idea this was. Yet that realization didn’t stop you from resting your head against Wonwoo’s shoulder, eyes drifting closed as the two of you swayed to the melody.
“Can I kiss you?”
All at once things seemed to snap back into place as you heard his voice. It was a simple question, but it still had your heart racing. You lifted your head so that you were able to stare into his eyes, questioning his intentions. 
“Your mom has been staring at us, I think she’s expecting it.” He muttered, his voice low so that you were the only one who could hear him. It was for the lie...he didn’t actually want to kiss you, you were foolish for getting your hope up. You couldn’t find you voice to respond so you simply nodded your head. 
Taking this affirmation, he removed one of his hands from your waist and hesitantly cupped your cheek. You felt heat rush to your face as he inched forwards, almost as if someone had put him into slow motion. Then all at once his slightly chapped lips were on yours and it felt like your heart had stopped. For a second you even forgot to kiss back, but it only lasted a moment. Your arms wrapping tighter around his neck to pull him a bit closer, deepening the kiss. 
Then all too quickly, he pulled back and you didn’t stop him. After all, this was just for show it wasn’t like he was kissing you because he wanted to. The thought caused your heart to clench inside your chest.
“I’ll be right back.” Without giving him a chance to respond, you slipped from his arms and power walked out of the reception hall to the bathroom. Maybe there you could get a clear head and remember your place.
You weren’t sure how long you were in the bathroom, but by the time you returned to the reception hall Wonwoo had returned to your previous seats. This time though, he was accompanied by your mother, and they seemed to be laughing and having a chat. As you approached you heard your mother speaking.
“Now Wonwoo dear, I’m surprised that my child hasn’t mentioned you before! The two of you seem so in love that I’m just shocked!” She exclaimed, obviously amping the drama. She was your mother after all. Wonwoo let out a small chuckle, his deep voice filling your ears despite it being soft. 
“I asked them not to. I wasn’t sure that you would approve of me, so we decided to take things slowly. I realize that’s probably a pretty crappy excuse but, I really love them. So I just wanted to make sure I did things right.” 
That...was not the reasoning you guys had decided upon. He was supposed to say that you were nervous or something like that, put the blame on you. You felt conflicted hearing his answer, but you weren’t really given time to think about it when your mother noticed you closing in.
“Oh darling! I’m so glad you decided to bring Wonwoo tonight. He is such a doll, and you better be bringing him to our family Christmas!” She declared, standing to pull you into a tight hug before turning her attention back to Wonwoo. “And you don’t have to worry about missing out with your family. We celebrate on the 24th so people can visit other families on Christmas day.” 
“I’ll be sure to be there ma’am.”
“Well I’ll leave you two love birds alone. No helicopter moming for me tonight.” With a quick kiss on your cheek and a small “love you” your mother was gone. 
Taking a seat back down at your table, you stared at the decor. A small candle inside of a little glass orb with a circular opening on the top. The way the light flickered kept your mind focused. 
“How much did you hear?” He questioned, you couldn’t bring yourself to look over at him, your heart was pounding far too quickly and you were almost certain he could hear it.
“Uhh, the whole part where you ‘wanted to do things right’.” 
You heard a small sigh escaping from him and your eyes left the candle, watching as he ran a hand through his hair before looking back over at you.
“I guess this is a pretty lousy way to tell you that I do actually have feelings for you. Isn’t it?”
“I mean, kind of? But it’s cool, I did a pretty bad job of expressing my feelings too.” with a small laugh, you reached over and took his hand and laced his fingers with yours. Your eyes met and you saw the sweetest smile erupt onto his face.
“Can I kiss you again?” His words came out soft, barely audible over the music in the room.
“Only if I get to call you my boyfriend for real.”
“I think I can make that deal.”
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readyplayerhobi · a year ago
Flower | 32
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; Hoseok x Reader
; Genre: Fluff
; Word Count: 4k
; Synopsis: You finally decide to take a dip into the world of online dating and find the Flower dating app. One of the top matches for you proves to be a guy who looks to be your complete opposite; tattooed, pierced, a metalhead and oh…incredibly handsome. What happens when you throw caution to the wind and reach out to him?
; A/N: A light chapter that I hope you’ll all enjoy! It’s fluffy and fun...but there’s also something significant that happens in it. So PLEASE let me know your thoughts and what you liked about it! The feedback has been decreasing as we’re getting to the end, which is a little disheartening :)
; Flower Masterpost
“Hobi! Oh my god, try this. It’s so delicious.” You practically moaned out, almost wiggling with delight on the aluminium seat. It wasn’t too hot thankfully, the clouds a little overcast but the hoodie you wore combat any chill. Still, you couldn’t bring yourself to care.
Because you were on vacation. And not the kind of vacations you were used to, which were usually a little weekend break here and there at the closest beach or some nature park. You didn’t have any kind of issue with those places of course but you’d always yearned to be able to travel even further. Explore other countries.
Which is what you were doing right now. 
For your second anniversary, Hoseok had surprised you with two weeks in Italy. Two things about that had shocked you. Firstly, the very fact that you’d now been with Hoseok for two years. Secondly, that he’d saved up some of his much higher salary and chosen to take you to one of the countries you’d always wanted to visit.
You hadn’t even known that he’d managed to subtly arrange it with your manager, a woman that you liked and enjoyed working for now. Two weeks of vacation time had been booked for you quietly and he’d organised the hotel, flights and even buying new suitcases. Stuff like this only happened in fiction, or so you’d thought.
But here you were, in the heart of Rome. It had already been a week and you’d eagerly taken in the magnificent sites of the Colosseum, the imposing Pantheon and the ancient Forum. As a lover of history, every part of it had excited you and you’d happily dragged Hoseok around to read every single information stand available while begging him to agree to go inside them all.
Not that he’d taken much begging really, he was just as eager to see things as you were. The only difference was that he was excited because of all the fantastic photo opportunities he was discovering. He’d brought his top of the line camera with him and was going wild with it, finding all the best angles and lighting to bring Rome’s important buildings to life.
For once, you’d been more than happy to pose for his photos. Each picture had you smiling so brightly, happiness evident in every part of you as you just relaxed and enjoyed yourself.
Hoseok leans forward, mouth open and waiting as you scoop up a good amount of pasta onto your fork. Carefully, a hand underneath to avoid any fallout, you fed it to him and watched his reaction eagerly. He chewed for a moment, expression thoughtful before letting out a quiet hum of appreciation.
While Hoseok had opted to go for a pizza bianca, you’d instead chosen the intriguing-sounding pasta alla gricia. It was better than you’d thought it would be, given you’d been a little unsure over the ingredients at first and your boyfriend agreed with your thought process as he nodded with a smile.
“It is good. Do you want a slice of this? It’s also better than it looks. Never considered having a pizza without tomato sauce anymore but...when in Rome, right?” Rolling your eyes at him, you sighed playfully. That was his favourite line to say at the moment, he seemed to take great pleasure out of it.
Instead of responding, you just opened your mouth up as well and let him feed you a piece of the pizza. For a moment, you let the flavours simply roll over your tongue as you chew. It was slightly salty, with hints of the olive oil it was cooked with and layered with delicious parmesan that gave it a lovely cheesy kick.
“Urgh, why doesn’t Italian food taste like this at home?” You moan softly, wiping at your mouth with the napkin before taking a sip of water. Laughing softly, Hoseok continues to eat as he shrugs and you marvel at how easily he travels.
Even though he quite clearly doesn’t fit into the little family-run restaurant you’d both stopped at, he seemed to feel at ease no matter where he was. While you understand feeling at ease with him at home, it was strange to see that he was just as comfortable no matter where he was.
“Probably because the food at home has been filtered through like...a million non-Italian mouths or something. The same way Indian food is nothing like what it is actually in India, you know? This is...this is the real shit.” Pointing towards his plate, he grins and you sigh affectionately before reaching out and brushing away some crumbs from his mouth.
He was like a child sometimes when he ate. Constantly get it everywhere except his mouth it seems. It was cute.
“Do you think they’d give me the recipe if I asked? I’d love to try and make this at home. Authentically.” Murmuring to him, you glance over to the older lady who had come out of the kitchen. This seemed to be a truly family-run place in that she’d only gone in there to cook your food.
“Err, I don’t know. Do you speak Italian? Aren’t Italian grandma’s like...feisty or something?” 
“Now you’re stereotyping.” Pointing the fork at him, he just grins and shrugs with amusement. You don’t argue any further with him though, instead focusing on cleaning up your plate with enthusiastic gusto. The two of you were planning to head over to the Trevi Fountain and walk around for a little while, enjoy some gelato and what remains of whatever good weather there will be today.
You were going to throw a Euro into the fountain to guarantee that you’d come back one day before kissing Hoseok silly in some alcove. Enjoy a little of Rome at night before finally heading back to the hotel. Maybe even some more kissing, who knows? You liked it with him.
Once you’d both finished, you went and paid. Unfortunately, you became far too shy to ask about any recipes once there, so instead, you just complimented the old lady in your broken Italian before smiling brightly and leaving quickly. Hoseok’s laughter at your inability to ask caused you to gently poke his ribs until he was asking you to stop.
The walk to the Trevi Fountain was long, but you found that you enjoyed every moment of it. Even though you’d only been here a week, you had fallen truly in love with Rome. An ancient city that has captured your young heart with its delicious food, stunning architecture and rich culture.
Even just a stroll in the evening like now, you felt like you were in some kind of romance film. From the subtle, warm filter Rome seems to have to its colour scheme to the old building’s, the cobbled streets in some areas and the way ancient ruins seemed to pepper the city liberally. You loved every inch of it. Including the graffiti and the not-so-tourist friendly areas. It was proof to you that the city was lived in, and had been lived in continuously for over two millennia.
Surprisingly, you didn’t talk much on the way there. Instead, you were too busy just admiring everything and simply enjoying the moment. If you were this in love with Rome already then you had the itch to not only get to explore more of Italy but also explore the world. And you certainly couldn’t think of anyone better to do that with than the wonderful man by your side.
“Where do you wanna go on vacation next? What about...Greece? Or maybe Japan? New Zealand and Chile are definitely on my list but I’d also like to go to at least one country in each continent. What about you?” Peppering him with questions, Hoseok looks at you with wide eyes before laughing.
“Woman! We’re not even through two weeks in Italy! And you’re already planning our next trip?” Snorting, he rolls his eyes before kissing your temple with more affection than his pseudo-outraged words. “I don’t know, I’m pretty open to anywhere I think. Maybe India? Try that real food like we’ve talked about? Egypt? We could try and visit all the super ancient places. What’s that place with the big, building thing carved into a mountain or somet? It’s all orange?”
“Petra? That’s in Jordan. I want to go there too!” He just smiles at you, squeezing your hand before squinting at the signpost just ahead. You’re finally approaching your destination and you grin as the two of you move through some of the little alleys that make up Roman streets before finally coming upon the world-famous monument.
“Oooh, it’s pretty,” You whisper, simply staring at it with awe. “The water is How do they do that?”
The soft click of Hoseok’s camera distracts you, causing you to look over to him before raising a brow. He just smiles and shrugs, looking down at his screen and you presume he’s just taken another photo of you seeing something for the first time. It would seem he’s gaining a collection of your reactions.
“I know something prettier,” Hoseok whispers into your ear. Almost immediately you cringe, pulling away from him to scowl while your lips pull away from your teeth almost automatically.
“Oh don’t. Don’t be that cheesy guy.” You whine, half-heartedly fighting as he wraps his arms around your waist and pulls you closer. He’s laughing though, so you know he’s not offended by what you’ve said. 
“I’ll tell your mom that you don’t think she’s prettier than the Trevi Fountain then. What kind of daught-oof.” Bending over slightly, he holds a hand to his stomach from where you’d elbowed him. It doesn’t stop him from laughing though and you find yourself following along despite how annoying he can be.
“Here.” Handing you a Euro coin, Hoseok takes a deep breath before letting it out slowly. Standing upright again, he gives you that brilliant and beautiful smile that you’ve come to love so dearly over the last two years.
“I read about this, you gotta stand with your back to it and throw it over your left shoulder with your right hand. That means we’ll come to Rome one day.” Giving him a satisfied look, you do as exactly as you told him to and throw the coin with gusto. He takes a moment to watch the coin fly through the air before doing the same with his own Euro, sealing the promise of a future trip.
“How many coins do you think are in here? There are hundreds.” Hoseok whispers, wrapping his arms around your waist and cuddling you closely from behind. The two of you stand there for a moment and watch as others crowd around the Fountain, some throwing coins of their own in while others simply take pictures.
There’s plenty of tourists here, but thankfully your anniversary isn’t near the true tourist season. So while there’s a lot, it’s manageable in your view. Still, you wouldn’t want to be the municipal workers cleaning up after all this.
“Come on, I want some gelato now.” Pulling out of his embrace, you head towards one of the side streets that lead away from the Fountain, positive that you’ll find a gelato shop hidden away this close to a tourist trap. It’s what you’d do if you wanted quick money.
It takes no time at all to find a nice looking shop and you soon have a cone in your hand with three large scoops of delicious looking gelato topping it. One is just plain vanilla, another is pineapple while the last is strawberry. Nothing too outrageous, but just a combination that makes your taste buds dance.
There’s not much in the way of public seating, unfortunately, so the two of you just sit down on the curbside of one of the streets. It’s pretty deserted with only the odd parked car every now and then. A few more mopeds are parked a little haphazardly but you’re not too worried about them really, they’re small enough that neither of you would be a nuisance if they wanted to get by.
“Mm, this is good.” Hoseok hums and you look over, catching him at the very moment that he licks at his mint chocolate flavoured gelato. It’s a pretty innocent movement, but the way his tongue curls into the soft, frozen cream reminds you of how he uses that tongue for something and you shiver softly. Thankfully, he doesn’t notice and you quickly glance away. It doesn’t help that you’re now considering how cold his tongue piercing might be from eating that.
Quietly, the two of you simply enjoy your cold treat while the gentle buzzing of the tourists only a few streets away filters through the alleyways. It’s getting close to sunrise and even though you wouldn’t say it was cold, the air certainly felt cool enough to warrant you cuddling a little closer into the warmth of your hoodie.
“So, now that we’re just chilling for a little bit. I have something important that I’ve been wanting to talk to you about.” Shifting slightly until he’s facing you more, you look up slowly to find him giving you a serious look. He’s got one of those ‘I’m about to ask you something life-changing’ looks. You’re not sure why you know that, but you can just tell instinctively.
“Are you about to ask me to marry you?” Blurting out the words, you slap your hand over your mouth as your eyes widen. Well, you certainly hoped he wasn’t now. If he was, you’d just ruined the whole moment.
Sure enough, Hoseok’s eyes widen at your words and he recoils a little, confusion mixed with shock painted onto his face.
“What? No! Why would you think that?” You’d laugh under any other circumstances if Hoseok had this kind of reaction to anything else. But he looks concerned as to why you thought he might be proposing, a hand resting on his chest almost like he’s trying to protect himself or something.
“Well...I don’t know! You whisk me away to Rome for a romantic holiday for our second anniversary? Then, after having a good time, you tell that you have something important to talk to me about and you look so serious! It was an educated guess!” Folding your arms over your chest, you hunch your shoulders over to make yourself a little smaller.
“I wasn’t going to propose. Did you want me to?” He sounds a little unsure then and you see the way his lips purse in thought like he’s wondering if maybe he should have been proposing or something. “And anyway, if I was going to propose then you’ve totally ruined the moment! It’s meant to be romantic and shit.”
Yeah, now he looks put out. His lower lip jutting out over how his non-proposal has been interrupted and you can’t help the laugh that leaves you at the sight. He’s too cute for his own good, honestly.
“I’m sorry. I’ll make sure to not interrupt any romantic moment in the future. I promise.” There’s only the tiniest hint of sarcasm in your voice as you tell him that. Just a teeny, tiny bit. It’s enough to make him give you a droll stare though, reaching out to gently poke at your cheek with his index finger.
Grabbing his hand, you smile at him innocently before pressing a kiss to the soft flesh of his palm. For a moment, he lets you before shifting until he’s holding your hand in his own. Tilting your head at him, you wonder what he had been about to tell you and he understands the silent question with a small smirk.
“So, anyway. As I was saying before I was rudely interrupted. Just before we flew out here, and I mean literally just before. Like...only two hours before we went to the airport, so don’t get too mad at me if you’re going to get mad. But that’s beside the point. Anyway, our landlady called me.” Hoseok pauses for a moment, letting you compute that information before carrying on.
Given he was far more comfortable talking on the phone, you’d elected to have him be the point of contact for anything related to the house. You figured he’d be able to sort out any of the non-important stuff by himself and anything important would be discussed by you both. Like right now.
“Oh...have we done something wrong? We signed the new lease properly and on time, right?” The two of you had signed a lease for another year just the other month. You liked the house and felt fully settled in it now, not wanting the hassle of having to move anywhere when you’d made it feel like a home. Thankfully, your landlady, Elsie, was lovely and had dealt with any issues quickly and efficiently.
“No, we’ve done nothing wrong. It’s just...she told that she’s going to sell the house. She’s moving across the country to be closer to her family as they’ve all moved away. So she’s selling up everything here to fund her move to a retirement home over there. We’ve got a few months until it’ll probably be sold and will need to move out.” He goes to carry on talking but you’re gripping his hand tightly, worry flickering to life inside you and anxiety following quickly after.
“What! She’s selling? But...but what about us? What do we do? Oh god, we need to find somewhere that’ll let us take Kasumi and-” You’re quieted by Hoseok’s finger on your lips, a gentle smile on his own that seems oddly calm for the bombshell he’s just dropped.
“If you’d let me finish...I thought you weren’t going to interrupt anymore?” Teasing you lightly, he taps your lips before sighing and shuffling on the hard curb. Looking in both directions, he takes the opportunity to stretch his legs out, the black Converse on his feet looking just as dirty as ever.
“What I was about to tell you, was that she told me that we’d been some of her best tenants even though we haven’t been there too long. Because she wants to sell quickly and get moving, she then asked if maybe we’d like to buy the house. First dibs on it. It’s going to go up for a reasonable price and I know we’ve both been putting money into our individual savings accounts for the last year. I mean, I can afford the deposit if necessary and I’m pretty sure we can get a nice mortgage.” Staring at him with wide eyes, you don’t quite realise that your jaw has dropped until he’s affectionately closing it with bemusement.
“Also, before you say anything. Let me just...say my piece here. It’s a good price and well, I’d like to do it. We’ve been together two years now, I love you and I can’t imagine my future without you.’s not a marriage proposal but it is a ‘would you like to take a leap of faith and purchase a physical house with me that will require a mortgage for many years?’. As I said, I’ve got enough saved up to cover the deposit and...well...I know my parents will put money in. What should’ve been my sister’s college fund instead got turned into a ‘whenever you buy a house fund’, despite me telling them to donate it. So...we can get a small mortgage. Easily manageable.” There’s no need for you to ask if he’s thought about this because it’s incredibly obvious that he has. 
So instead, you simply watch him in stunned silence. He wanted to buy a house with you. The house you currently lived in, that had become your home for over a year. Not just your home, but the safest place you’ve ever felt outside of your parents home. And he wanted to make that permanent.
Or at least, as permanent as you can get it without having to pay out lots of legal bills to get it all sold. This was a big move. A huge step in your relationship. Hell, in your life. A house. Buying a house. And you weren’t even thirty yet!
“I have some saved up,” Whispering, you cast your eyes down to instead focus on his hand as you gently trail along the veins and tendons along the back. “Probably not as much as you but enough to help.”
“Okay...what if you keep that money. And if we buy it, then we can use that money to start doing some of those home improvements we’ve always wished we could do? Like a new fence.” Gasping softly, you’re suddenly taken away from the fact that you were being faced with a big decision because your excited mind started to run away with you. While you weren’t a big fan of change, you were surprisingly a huge fan of causing planned change.
Which meant you loved decorating or building things. Moving the furniture around in a room and decorating everything into something entirely new was so incredibly satisfying. Plus, Hoseok was right. You’d spent the last year fantasising to him about all the stuff you would improve or change in the house if you could.
Because that’s what adult life was about. Getting excited at the prospect of new fencing.
“Oh my god, yes! And a new roof! Finally, get rid of those ugly tiles. And we can pave over the driveway so it doesn’t have that annoying gravel that gets everywhere. Can we redo the backyard entirely? I want a porch from the back door and then it leads down-” Laughing in amusement, Hoseok gently squeezes your hand before kissing your cheek when you look down in embarrassment.
“Okay, we can make a plan of all the DIY things we want to do. But I just need to know for the moment...would you agree to buy it? With me? We can sort everything properly when we get home, plan out the money and apply for the mortgage and all that. I just want to know for now.” 
You don’t respond for probably half a minute, causing Hoseok to frown slightly. But then you almost burst in excitement, jumping up and dancing on the spot in uncontrollable excitement. Hoseok wasn’t expecting it, his eyes widening in shock while his hands are reaching out to you as if he was worried you were going to fall.
“Oh my god! Buying a house! This is...oh my god. Hoseok! You want to buy a house with me?” Reaching for his hands, you half tug him up and he snorts while catching his balance. Resting his palms on your hips, he brings you to a halt before grinning down at you.
“Yes, I want to buy a house with you. I mean, that’s why I asked. So is this a yes? You're an impossible woman, you know that? It’s not a marriage proposal but I’d still quite like a yes from you…” Trailing off, he pouts slightly and you reach up to gently flick at his lip ring.
“Yes. I mean, we need to talk more seriously about it and sort out the finances but...yes. As long as we can do all the things I want to. Like new doors inside. I hate the doors we have now, they’re so annoying.” Hoseok sighs like he’s got the weight of the world on his back before dropping his forehead to your shoulders, arms wrapping around your waist and hugging you tightly.
“Okay, okay. I give in, we’ll make a list of all the things we want to change later. But you realise we have to buy the place first, right? And then save up again to make all these home improvement changes? It’s not going to be cheap.” You don’t hear him though, giving him a quick kiss before humming to yourself as you visualise your house as it is and your house as you want it to be.
Watching you closely, Hoseok lets out another breath before smiling and shaking his head. Well, at least you’d said yes. 
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myoxisbroken · 7 months ago
Sailor Without A Destination, Chapter 3
Wishful Thinking
Characters: Jonathan Pine/OFC Kate Morrison
Series Masterlist here
Also available on AO3
Rating: Explicit (eventually)
Words: 2696
Summary: Jonathan Pine returns to Majorca, determined to eradicate the demons from his last visit there. When circumstances result in Kate Morrison sharing his bungalow, he may find more than a new start on the island. But will he be able to escape his past?
Warnings: Sexy thoughts, masturbation (f)
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Kate had been in bed for an hour and was staring at the ceiling, unable to sleep. It was nearing 3am now, which meant that it was...she quickly did the calculations in her head, realizing it was only coming up on 6pm at home. But she’d also been traveling for somewhere around eighteen of the last 24 hours, only grabbing snatches of sleep on her two flights. She never slept well on flights, even at night.
Now her mind wouldn’t wind down, and her body felt restless but so fatigued, and she was thirsty. She should have gotten a prescription for sleep meds for the first night or two of her vacation, just until she got used to the time change. Perhaps a cup of tea would help her to settle down enough to sleep. Jonathan was English; surely there was tea in one of the cabinets, even if the resort hadn’t provided any. She threw back the covers and padded out to the kitchen in her sleep tee and pajama shorts, turning on the kettle.
She wondered how Jonathan was faring on the patio. It didn’t seem like an outdoor lounge chair would be the most comfortable place to spend a night. She cautiously stepped closer to the door and peered out. She could see his tall form curled up on one of the chairs next to the bungalow’s private pool. He could not possibly be getting any kind of quality sleep. Even as she watched, he turned to one side, then back to the other.
She turned and looked at the couch. She walked over to it and pulled up a cushion to see that it was a sleeper sofa. She hesitated for only a moment before she walked back over to the door. If Jonathan had wanted to hurt her, he would have already done so, wouldn’t he? She had been at his mercy earlier - why did that thought make her shiver? - and he had let her go and apologized several times. Then he gave her his own accommodations and instructed her to lock the door behind him. Those weren’t the actions of someone who was up to no good, right?
She unlocked the door and slid it open.
“Jonathan?” she called softly, knowing that her voice would carry in the stillness of the night.
He sat up, immediately alert, and turned to her with a look of concern.
“Is everything alright, Kate?” he asked.
“It’s fine. I just can’t sleep. I’m all out of whack from the flights and the time change and I can’t get my brain to settle. I thought a cup of tea might help. Would you like one? You didn’t look like you were getting much sleep, either.”
He smiled ruefully as he walked toward her.
“Thank you. A cup of tea sounds lovely. I’m afraid my plan isn’t working as well as I would like.”
“Oh! You don’t mind if I have some of your tea, do you?” she asked, realizing belatedly how presumptuous it was of her to offer him some of his own tea.
Jonathan laughed. “Not at all. You’re welcome to anything you'd like in the kitchen. It’s yours now.”
Kate felt guilty again. Not only was she taking away the man’s bed, but she was basically taking the food out of his mouth.
“I’d like to pay you for whatever food is here then, and maybe a little extra for the inconvenience?”
“I would not dream of it, Kate.”
An awkward silence set in for a few moments, then they both spoke.
“When did you-”
“How long are you-”
Jonathan smiled at her again, this time with a devastatingly charming grin that made her heart literally skip a beat. Kate had always thought that was only hyperbole.
“After you,” he said with an accompanying gesture.
“When did you get to Majorca?” she asked.
“The day before yesterday. I’m going on something of a European tour for the next month or so, visiting places I’ve never been or haven’t seen in a while. I thought I’d start with a week here.”
“That sounds lovely!”
“I’m quite looking forward to it. It’s been a...strange time of late, and I needed to take some time off. I visited Majorca last year, but it was for work.”
“Too busy and stressful to enjoy yourself?” she asked.
“You could say that,” said Pine with a laugh. “It wasn’t the best of trips. This is such a beautiful island that I wanted to return and form some better memories, lay things to rest, you know.”
Kate thought that was an odd thing to say about a work trip. She wondered what ghosts of the past Jonathan was facing.
“Is this where you stayed last time?” she asked him.
“No, it was on a different part of the island. I thought it best to start fresh.”
The kettle whistled and Kate got up to move it off of the burner, opening cabinets until she found teacups. She prepared the tea after asking Jonathan how he liked his, then brought the cups over to the kitchen table.
Jonathan took a sip and cleared his throat.
“What about you? How long are you planning to stay here?” he asked.
“We’d planned two weeks. I’m not sure if I’ll find enough to stay busy for that long, but maybe it’ll be nice relaxing here and enjoying the ocean view and the pool. I suppose I could get used to taking it easy for a couple of weeks,” she said with a smile. “I brought my laptop, but I don’t know if I’ll feel like doing any work while I’m here.”
“What do you do?”
“I’m a freelance writer. I started out doing it to make a little extra money while I worked in a cubicle farm and ended up making enough to quit and write full time.”
“That’s fantastic! What do you write about?”
“City life, much of the time. I write a lot about Los Angeles, where I’m from, but also about other cities. I visit and take in the culture and activities, talk to the locals to find out the inside scoop, hit up all the good hole-in-the-wall restaurants, and write about it. Sometimes I write about pop culture and music as well.”
“You could certainly write about Majorca while you’re here if you wanted, or after you’re back home. And if you don’t feel like working, there’s still plenty to do on the island, if you do feel like exploring. If you’d like, I can make a list before I go tomorrow of places worth checking out, if they’re of interest to you.”
“That would be great! Thank you. You’ve truly been so kind, and you don’t even know me.”
“It’s nothing, really. You’re overdue for some kindness, I think.”
Jonathan could tell that Kate was flagging. He picked up the conversation, asking her a few easy questions and talking about some of the places he’d been and those that were on his own list to visit as they finished their tea. After they were done, he took the cups to the sink and gave them a quick wash, leaving them to dry on a towel.
He turned to see that Kate had moved the cushions off of the sofa and was opening it up into bed form.
She looked up at him.
“I thought you might prefer to sleep in here, if you don’t mind the sofa,” she said apologetically.
Pine was impressed. Kate was much more unflappable than he would have anticipated. More trusting and forgiving, too, considering that he had held a knife to her throat only a few hours before.
“Are you sure you’re comfortable with me sleeping inside?”
Kate smiled and nodded at him. “Yeah.”
“Thank you for your trust in me,” he said.
The sofa bed looked so much more inviting than the lounge chair outside. He was sure that he’d be asleep in no time.
“Are you an early riser, Kate?”
“Not typically, and especially not on vacation. Are you?”
“It depends. I try to get up and go for a run most mornings before it gets too warm. However, I believe I’ll be skipping that tomorrow and having a bit of a lie-in, if that’s alright.”
“Absolutely. I doubt I’ll stir before close to noon, at this rate.”
“I hope you’re able to sleep now. Pleasant dreams, Kate.”
“Thank you, Jonathan. You, too.”
Kate went into the bedroom and closed the door behind her, turning the lock. She doubted she needed to do so, but neither did she want to be completely foolish after inviting a strange man to sleep in the next room, even if he was beautiful to look at and had been so kind and courteous. Perhaps she was still a little on edge after her eventful arrival at the bungalow.
She gave her teeth a quick brush and got back in bed. Once again, she found herself tossing and turning, but she knew what the problem was this time. She could not get the mental picture of Jonathan out of her head. She was filled with the tension of unsatisfied arousal.
She had gone far too long without sex, which should have been more of a red flag in her past relationship than it had been, but hindsight was 20/20, as they say. She had all these pent-up feelings and hormones and frustrations, and there was a breathtakingly gorgeous man thirty feet away. She kept picturing how good he looked in his black T-shirt, and the muscles in his arms and legs and underneath the fabric of that thin shirt, and the hint of chest hair peeking above the vee, and his blue eyes, and the way his beautifully sharp jawline had been clenched before he had relaxed it, and his dazzling smile.
The bed smelled like him from when he had slept in it the night before. She hadn’t realized she was even aware of how he smelled already. Instead of being weirded out by the thought of sleeping in the bed after he had, she found there was a pleasant sort of intimacy to it. She pulled over one of the pillows and buried her face in it, enjoying his scent.
There was a familiar throbbing between her legs. If she ignored it for long enough, it would go away. But if she gave it a little attention, she’d relax that much faster and be able to go to sleep. Plus it would feel good. It had been too long since she’d even felt like getting herself off, which was just sad. She was a little rusty, but she had confidence she still knew how.
She gave into the temptation and let her mind dwell on Jonathan. She thought about his delicious voice and how she could listen to him talk all day. She’d love to hear that voice whispering filthy things in her ear. She let herself remember the enticing silkiness she'd heard when he’d been holding her. Despite the fear of those moments, she vividly recalled the sound of his voice and how it had seemed to be in such conflict with the potential violence of his actions. His voice was cultured, smooth, and commanding, but also seductive and rich.
She thought about his thighs and how it would feel if he pressed one between her legs and rubbed it against her. Or if he was sitting in the chair at the dining table again and drew her down to straddle that thigh, pulling her so that she slid back and forth, her pussy getting friction from the firm muscle underneath her. She moaned at the thought, then stopped for a moment, afraid she had disturbed Jonathan and that he’d come to check on her. She held her breath for a few seconds but heard nothing.
She relaxed back into her fantasies, determined to keep quiet so that she didn’t either disrupt Jonathan’s sleep or alert him as to what was happening in the bedroom. She pictured his seeking lips, kissing her neck, moving across her chest, drawing in her nipples. She used her fingers to tweak the hardened tips of her breasts as she thought about his long-fingered hands moving over her body, exploring her and learning how to bring her pleasure. She was sure that Jonathan was a man who would enjoy thoroughly investigating a new partner’s body.
One of her hands moved down between her legs and slipped into her slick passage, already swollen with her desire. She used her fingers to stroke herself, imagining that they were Jonathan’s fingers sliding into her.
Kate was shocked at how quickly she could feel her orgasm approaching. She slid her other hand down and used it to circle and rub her clit as her fingers continued to work within her body. Her hips were thrusting as she pushed herself against her own hand. She felt the familiar, delicious tension drawing her body tighter and let out quiet gasps as she became even more tightly coiled. She bit her lip to hold in the sound as she felt her climax wash over her, her body pulsing and clenching around her fingers as she quietly shook.
Relaxation spread throughout her body as the throbbing eased, then stopped. Her mind felt pleasantly hazy, and she at last felt sleep coming over her.
Pine lay on the made-up sofa, grateful to be indoors on a piece of furniture actually designed for sleeping. But sleep was not as quick to come as he had thought it would be.
His mind was dwelling on the beautiful woman on the other side of the bedroom door. Pine had been very aware of her body in her thin sleep clothes. They were in no way immodest, but the movement of her generous breasts beneath the soft-looking shirt that clung to her curves told him that she wasn’t wearing a bra. He had valiantly tried to keep from looking but kept finding himself sneaking glances at her when she was preparing their tea.
Her legs appeared a mile long and gorgeously toned below the hem of the shorts she wore, even though she was not in reality very tall. He wondered how they would feel on either side of his hips as he lay between her thighs. Maybe she would squeeze them against him, or wrap them around his waist. Perhaps she would press her heels into his ass, pulling him further into her.
He remembered how her soft, warm body had felt against him when he had wrapped his arms around her. She had smelled good, too, despite having traveled all day. He wanted to bury his nose in her hair again while he let his hands wander over those tempting curves of hers.
The course of his thoughts was doing nothing to help the erection he no longer needed to hide. He had already been semi-hard by the time she had taken herself off to bed, just in time to prevent a very embarrassing situation for him. He was laying on his back, desperately trying to think of unsexy things, when he heard a low sound from the bedroom.
He leaned up on one elbow, unsure if he was more curious or concerned. Was that a sob? He hoped that Kate wasn’t upset and feeling despondent. Perhaps she was having a bad dream. Although now that he thought about it, she didn’t sound upset. She sounded...well, that was likely just wishful thinking on his part and certainly not helpful in him getting his mind onto safer topics. He heard nothing further and lay back against his pillow again.
He made himself try counting sheep, singing songs in his head, reciting poems he’d learned years ago in school. He thought about his parents, and about going for a run in the morning, and about leaving here tomorrow, likely to never see her again. That was enough to finally tame his body, and he was able to relax into the pillow as he pulled up the blanket, ready to get some sleep for the night at last.
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Where they take you on vacation - 7 Brothers + Diavolo
Found out the edits are made by @devilgram​ who has such a beautiful blog and posts so many Obey Me! things that are so cool! You did a great job with all the edits! <3
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Lucifer would like to take you to Romania, mostly because of all the stories of the great Wallachian ruler Vlad Tepes/The Impaler and wants to find out more about his ruthless yet effective methods of insuring no crime happens in his country ( and hopes they will work on his brothers too ).
Apart from the gorgeous landscapes from the mountainside, the possibility to go to the seaside, or see the different types of regional architecture ( like the unique Black Church ) from different cities, he’d also like to get a full experience of the language, the music, the traditions ( customs, clothes, foo ) and feel for a day like a native from the old ages. 
Even more, he’d find it very nice if you were to try out one of the traditional outfits, and would take a picture of you at the mountains, on a nice field, and put the developed picture in his coat, looking at it whenever he is working and misses you.
He can get pretty salty about the fact that there are still people who believe the Bran castle is Dracula’s true castle, instead of the Poienari fortress and wouldn’t hesitate to express his displeasure, but would appreciate the castle and everything displayed there nonetheless.
Also, would be the first to go to the Horror house, holding your hand if you get scared, and would feel incredibly proud that you trust him and feel safe around him, but would get such a kick out of using his demon form while at it, to scare the actors there.
His whole aesthetic draws people near as if they would actually approach a vampire royalty, which allows him to puff his chest out in pride, so hey, you’re dating a vampire now!
Would take you out at the fanciest restaurant, just to feel how the life at this place is.
Would love to take long walks on the beach at the sea, your feet in the water, holding hands, and just admiring the moon and stars while waves are your music.
You’d mostly stay silent and enjoy the atmosphere, but sometimes you talk a few words, and that’s when Lucifer is the most relaxed, calm and tender.
He would saying that he loves you with such ease for the first time in so long, and the kiss on your forehead would be so soft that it brings you more butterflies than any kiss ever could.
Lucifer looks so ethereal in the light of the moon, it’s almost like he’s glowing, and when you tell him, he’d actually blush softly, before chuckling and stroking your hair, not denying, nor agreeing with your statement.
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Mammon loves to spend money and grab it, so what better place than Las Vegas?
He’d love for the two of you to dress super fancy and flashy, in matching colours if possible, go gambling, scam people and experience the luxury night lifestyle, go to clubs, loud music and expensive alcohol and all that.
But Mammon isn’t all about the flashy and exciting night time, instead, he would mostly love to just see the world with you by his side, and his goals is to make you happy, to he does everything he can to go sightseeing with you and reads in advance about whatever places you could visit and tells you some fun trivia about the place, he’s treating you to the fanciest food and drink places, and would spoil you rotten when going shopping, loving to see you do a little catwalk for him every time you get out of the changing booth.
He’d definitely insist on buying super cute animal Pyjamas.
He’s a huuuuuge fan of the “His Queen/Her King” trope and loves showing you off as much as possible, so get matching Tshirts or jackets and he would be SOOO proud and would laugh confidently and proud all the time, his arm around you, saying how cool you two are together and all that.
He wouldn’t admit it out loud, but he honestly doesn’t believe he’s good enough for you, but when he sees how your dazzling smile is always directed to him and you cling on his arm whenever you watch the Lights Show on the big buildings, see the beautiful fireworks or watch the impressive singing fountain...Well, he can’t help but blush and kiss your forehead, feeling butterflies in his stomach.
He’s the kind of guy who would spam his DevilGram with either couple pictures in different places you visit, or just cute pics of you or you two messing around, and his account is actually very popular for the #CoupleGoalz trend.
At night, he would like to either cuddle with you and watch a movie, or go drive through the city at night, watch the night lights, and go on a cliff, stargazing and chatting openly about everything, because honestly, this guy is always dismissed and insulted by his brothers, it’s always a relief and a fresh air when he can be himself and just...Talk with someone. 
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Levi is the biggest weeb in the world, so the first place you’d visit together is Japan.
Anime conventions, wearing cute kimonos while going to festivals or roaming the streets of Kyoto or Akihabara, couple cosplay (Henry and the Lord of Shadows), buying merch of your favourite anime/manga/game, going to Vocaloid concerts, buying the newest Ruri-chan figurines, trying out new video games that just came out and so on.
Actually wants to go to a Pokemon cafe and fangirls SO much about all the cute pokemon themes there.
He would get you all the cutest Pokemon plushies, especially if you’re not all that into Pokemon but want to share that interest with him, so expect a Skitty, Vulpix, Shaymin, Eevee and all its Eeveelutions, Milotic plushie, while he would already be collecting plushies for the rarest Pokemons, but he’s incredibly happy that you want to do this with him.
He also gets an Ekans just for the Lolz and let’s out his tail, mostly for troll purposes, but it makes you laugh and he could swear his heart stopped beating and his cheeks were redder than ever.
He secretly got you a maid outfit and would love to see you wearing it, but he’s too embarrassed to actually say.
He would blush SO much seeing you in a kimono with a nice hair pin and a fan, while going to see the Sakura trees blossoming and you look like the Sengoku type of heroines from the dating sims he plays so much (to get experience and not fuck up with you), but somehow, you’re so much beautiful than any CG he’s every seen, no matter how gorgeous the art is.
He would get lots of packs of Pocky and despite not saying it out loud, would put a pocky in his mouth and you’d get the hint and munch on the other end of the pocky, in the end kissing him softly.
Levi.exe stopped working.
He would love taking pics of you alone, because you’re so beautiful, and would edit them to look as ethereal as possible, if you want, to even have fantastic backgrounds, and would take pride in how popular your DevilGram/InstaGram is.
He also changed his Lockscreen to have you with your hand in a half-heart gesture, while yours has him with the other half, so whenever he looks at the clock, or sees a new notif, he sees you smiling, with a cute kitten filter.
His Wallpaper is the two of you kissing, edited with a few hearts, sparkles and a little “I love you” written in cursive in a corner (you edited the pic and suggested you both use it, but he denied, so you changed it yourself for him too, while he was busy gaming, and he liked it so much that he couldn’t change it back to Ruri-chan.)
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Satan would choose England first for so many reasons!
He’s such a perfect gentleman and seeing everyone so polite and chivalrous there makes his heart bloom and would up his gentleman shills even more, wanting to impress you and make your heart skip with everything he does.
Loves to take you to different castles, see in real life everything he read in books and saw in movies or TV series, and he’s so mesmerised by the beauty of everything that he forgets he promised to be your guide, but his bright smile and the way his eyes sparkle in curiosity and glee make up for everything.
Besides, he’d definitely go back to you and explain in very precise detail the reason for his fangirling.
He’s a little nerd so bookstore dates are a huge YES, and more - CAT CAFES where you can read at your heart’s content. HUGE YES.
You’d both get our of there with tons of books that you will read together, cuddled up under the blankets while enjoying an aromatic tea that Satan prepared for you, together with some nice scones.
He’d want to go with you to Shakespeare’s grave, Dicken’s house, would like to see anything involving the Romantics and so on, since he’s in love with British literature.
Satan wants to go see the Harry Potter theme park so much, and would buy tons of merch for the two of you, and wants to go in full Hogwarts robes and wand with you.
Would take a gazillion pics of you together, that only you can see since it may ruin his reputation with his brothers for geeking out, but he’d love it if the universe was actually real.
He’d also take you to King’s Cross to take pic near the wall where you get to the 9 3/4 Platform.
And no trip to England could exist without a visit to Sherlock’s house, pretending to be detectives, and at Madam Tussaud’s Wax Museum to admire all the figures and potentially take troll pics with them.
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Asmo wastes no time in taking you to Paris, of course!
And the first thing you do is have a coffee at the restaurant located on top of the Eiffel Tower.
He would, throughout all the trip, take tons of selfies EVERYWHERE, and aeshtetic pics of either you alone, him alone, or together.
He’s a Devilgram and Devilr celebrity, after all!
Loves going to all the little cafes and drink a hot beverage with you while looking and judging all the passer-bys, how they would never compare to how beautiful and fashionable you two are.
He takes you to the Versailles Palace while wearing the most glamorous outfits, and despite all the pics taken, he will tell you stories of when he visited the place long ago, and more, will tell you of the paintings displayed, since he’s rather knowledgeable.
Asmodeus will take you everywhere, but first, the Lafayette Galleries, all while streaming every second there, to shop everyone how amazing the place is.
Would pics the both of you sooo many pretty brand clothes, new skin care routine and make up products, that you almost wonder where he has all the money from, especially to pay someone to carry them back to your place.
Would take you to a lingerie shop where he’d make you try on all the cutest outfits and would buy them all, especially because he thinks they will make you more confident and wants to make sure you never thing bad of yourself, because if you’re dating him, then you’re obviously the most beautiful being he’s ever seen, inside and out. (he doesn’t count here, of course)
His wallpaper is a selfie of you two smiling and making a peace sign, from the top of the Eiffel Tower, seeing all Paris in the background, at evening, with the beautiful sky and the night lights all over.
Would take you on a cruise on Seine, serenading and drinking a glass of bubbly champagne, admiring all the buildings and the happy people sitting on the banks of the River, enjoying the scenery.
And of course, there’s no perfect trip to the City of  Love without some very tender and sensual love-making, with so many compliments, praises, soft touches and gentle kisses from Asmodeus, followed by a relaxing bath with milk, honey and rose petals, scented candles, bubbles and ambiental music, and of course, a lot of cuddling all night long.
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Beelzebub would want to go to Italy, since it’s the country with the best human food, and what better place to eat it them its home country?
Would actually love to go sightseeing with you and seeing all the pretty stuff there is.
He appreciates the architecture, statues and paintings of every historical place, loves to find out more about the country’s history and traditions and would like to take scenic pictures of all the places you visit...
And make a couple album where he puts pics with either you alone or together.
It’s his most treasured possession and nobody except Belphie knows about it, and while he is happy that his brother is happy, he would say it’s so cheesy.
Would have fun when doing the classic “Pushing the Pisa Tower” picture, would like to sing when you go on a Gondola ride in Venice, and pretend to be a gladiator at the Colosseum, while you’re his Caesar.
If you get him a necklace or a keychain, he’d never take it off and has it as his lucky charm, kissing it whenever he misses you or wants the day to go good.
After he understands how the food is made, he’d want to make it himself, so you cooking together would be so cute and fun, and the way you see the love and tenderness in his eyes as he looks at you laughing, while your face is covered in flour...
He’s such a precious and soft baby, and he loves you so much.
Also, he’d love to carry you around just for fun and because he loves holding you close to him, so either bridal style on on his shoulder, you say it, and he’s gonna do it.
Will also like to take lots of short videos with you two, just fooling around, giggling, laughing, making jokes, kissing, pretending to be kittens, having flour fights and all that, since they’re beautiful memories and whenever he’s sad, he watches them and he forgets the reason he was sad in the first place.
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Belphegor would take you to New Zealand, because he saw how beautiful and green the landscape were, thanks to the Lord of the Rings movies, so he wanted to see what would be like stargazing on such a flowery field, or sleeping in a Hobbit hole.
He’s pretty sleepy all the time, but that doesn’t mean he wouldn’t take you to see the big cities as well, eat out, shop for souvenirs and so on, but his heart is taken by the simplicity and peace the countryside and forests hold.
Belphie would actually like to have his head on your lap as you stay at the bottom of a tree and read, much like Froddo Baggings would, waiting for Gandalf.
It’s a guilty pleasure of his, but he wants to see ‘Gandalf’s’ fireworks, and when a festival like that happens, he’d hold your hand tight, having a soft smile on his face and a tender look in his eyes.
Despite not saying it very often, he will confess his love for you.
It’s barely above a whispers, but it’s genuine.
It’s simple, small, but meaningful and beautiful nonetheless.
As you stargaze on the field, he’d tell you the names of all stars and constellations that you can see, and would tell you some trivia he knows about them.
Would take a few pics here and there, but his favourite one is one where you two are on the ground outside, both your heads on his favourite pillow, while looking at each other, both of you having such genuine and pure love in your expressions.
If he ever wakes up earlier than you, and likes to troll a bit, he’d get his tail out and tickle your noes, smirking at how cute your half-asleep reactions were, but would play innocent when you ask about it, only kissing your nose to make you forget and reassure you that it was only a dream (it wasn’t).
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Diavolo is so easily excitable, despite his age and title for the next Devil Lord, but honestly, he wants to take you to Iceland to see the Northern Lights that you spoke so fondly about.
There are so many pretty things to see in the Devildom alright, but none of them quite as fascinating to him as how the sky lights up with so many different and beautiful shades of green, blue and pink, it’s almost unreal!
Who would have thought that the Human world could hold such natural wonders?
He could have sword you were a witch or something, and just wanted to impress him with your magic, as if charming him wasn’t enough, but this beauty makes him behave even more like a child, leaving him speechless and breathless.
Diavolo would kiss and hug you, spinning your around so many times, if you allow him, you forgot to count, which is his way of thanking you for showing him this place and he’s honestly just so happy that he can share this precious moment together with you.
You tell him some old stories about how they say the ancestors’ souls watch over everyone from up there, and that even the animals who died have their souls there, living in peace and quiet.
Despite knowing it’s obviously not true, the tales humans come up with are so creative and make so much sense to their beliefs, he’s genuinely fascinated by all these old stories and would like for you to tell him more.
Iceland’s landscapes are also to be taken into account, and Diavolo will take thousands of pics of you literally everywhere, just because you’re so cute and he’s so damn happy and wants many memories together.
Would like for you to take a selfie with his phone, while at the Northern Lights, and would make Lucifer frame it so he can have it on his desk whenever he’s working, and whenever he gets bored, tired, or just misses you, he’d gaze fondly at the picture and would occasionally kiss it.
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Humans are Space Orcs, “Put Down Your Weapons.”
I think some of you had suggested something similar to me at one point, but I ran in a different direction with it, I hope you like. 
“Hey calm down, you get any more excited and you are going to jump through the roof.
Sunny turned her head down at him rather scathingly, “If i told you that ever time you got excited, we would never talk about anything else.” Ahead of them, the line shifted a little bit forward, bodies pressed together in a great clamour to get inside. Voices were raised, and --even from out here-- they could hear the raring of the Crowds.
Sunny bounced excitedly on the balls of her feet as they made their way the last few feet to the gate.
A human attendant was waiting for them holding some kind of scanning machines, “Tickets.” He prompted 
Adam grinned and pulled two tickets from his pocket,  “Make that VIP.”
The man looked over the tickets with surprise, raising an eyebrow, “You could have come through the VIP entrance.”
Adam frowned, “Uh, I didn’t know they had one.” The man shrugged, scanned their tickets and then waved them through. Sunny practically skipped through as Adam followed after. THey wandered through the bowels of the massive concrete stadium for a few minutes, where, on all sides there were booths of souvenirs, food, and drinks.
Adam took the time to buy Sunny a souvenir before they made their way up and into the Stadium, pushing down through the benches to where their seats were, right at the front before the caged arena.
Medical crews were busy setting up around the outside of the cage.
Sunny took her seat in excitement.
Adam leaned down hand on her shoulder, forced to get close to her ear so he could talk over the roaring of the crowd, “I need to find a bathroom, but I’ll be back.”
She nodded barely turning her head to look at him as he stood and made his way back up the dark steps and back onto the concourse where the crowds were only growing more dense.
He pushed his way through trying to determine where someone might hide a bathroom.
He felt like it should be this hard with so many people, but didn’t see anything. Granted a few times he got distracted by something interesting and had to go see, but eventually he saw a small hallway just off the concourse, and determined that that was as good a place as any took look. There was no one in the little passage, but that didn’t really strike him as odd as he made his way down the stairs.
That led him into another long hallway, which was also dark and devoid of people. He was growing suspicious that maybe this wasn’t the right way to go, when a light just up ahead caught his attention, shining off a tile floor.
Ah there it was!
He hurried forward in relief finishing his business and intending to go back upstairs when a voice echoed at him from the hallway.
“They WHAT!”
“I’m s-s-rry sir t-they canceled and w… w-w-w.”
“Oh shut up!” THe other voice snarled. We don’t have time for this. There is an entire crowd out there just waiting for us, and now you're telling me that they had to cancel.”
“I…. we have other options sir.”
“None as good as we promised.” The man shot back
Adam looked nervously around the room he was standing in peeking around the concrete corner and into a large locker room.
This was…. Not a public bathroom.
That was ok thought, no harm no fowl and he could just walk out quietly without anyone being the wiser.
He went to turn around and nearly leaped out of his skin almost running into a young man and a spiffy suit, “What are you doing-” The young man’s voice trailed off at the last moment and his eyes grew wide in recognition. A mix of expressions crossed his face before it hardened. He grabbed Adam by the arm, “Come with me, sir.”
Adam opened his mouth to protest, but was hauled around the corner to where the other two men were standing, and they cut off as he did.
“What is-”
The men must have recognized him at approximately the same time.
The young man aggressively held up Adam’s hand, turning it to show the back, “I think we will be ok.”
Adam yelped in pain and snatched his hand back, “Hey, what’s the big idea.”
The one man, who he assumed to be the boss looked him over, “Say yes.”
It was at that moment that Adam’s brain went and did that thing that it sometimes did when he was nervous or caught off guard…. That being that it just shut off and decided to take a vacation. He had gotten to the point where it no longer did that in combat, but in social situations it just went and shut right off.
For that reason, he stuttered around for a few seconds before his brain did the only thing it could at the present moment, “Y-yes?” The man clapped his hands, “Excellent!”
He grabbed Adam by the arm and hauled him back into the dark with Adam only lightly protesting, to confused to do anything else.
Krill was going to be pissed if he got kidnapped again.
Was this a kidnapping?
He couldn’t tell.
Why was he so stupid? By the time he had begun asking himself that question they were already in a little dark room just off the side, a bunch of attendants ran forward and before he knew what was going on there, one of them had pulled off his jacket, and another had taken a pair of scissors to his shirt.
He yelped in indignation and protest, but before he could do anything about it, the rest had gotten to work, and he was suddenly shoved back. He expected to hit the wall but instead he heard a sharp whirring noise and there was a sudden shock of cold through his body as the Iron eye suit clicked into place at the base of his spine. His feet and arms were pressed back clicking repeatedly up and down his arms as the implants were connected.
Someone grabbed his hand and fitted the the bracer around his wrists, fitting his fingers into the sockets of the hand piece.
The man stepped forward, “Thank you for volunteering Admiral, you may just have saved the night.”
Adam’s head was clearing now, “Now hold the fuck on, I didn’t agree to anything.”
The younger man moved forward, “Actually you agreed verbally, you said yes. He held up a piece of paper, “Now this is your contract. A single night a single fight, your debut fight against the slayer.”
“The WHO?” He squeaked 
There was another sharp whirring noise as the iron-eye suit was hooked to the power source -- his leg--, and he felt the machine as it booted up.
More attendants moved forward to socket large armor plating into palace.
“Now the rules are simple, no eye gouging shots below the belt, or headshots, also not headbutting or neck twisting.”
“Wait! What!”
HE struggled, but the iron eye armor held him fast, having not been engaged yet.
The armor plates retraced and slid into a large line along his back, leaving his chest, arms and legs exposed for the time being.
“Try to make it a good fight, Admiral, the people are counting on you.”
“Counting on you to lose fantastically, but fantastically being the key word .”
The men stepped back, and there was a subtle whirring. He jolted forward as the mounted iron eye armor was pulled on rails across the ceiling and towards a door on the far wall. His eyes were wide, and he screamed for help, but the closer he got to the door the louder he could hear the cheering.
He paused for a second in front of the door.
“And now let's welcome our challenger! A special treat for the audience, you all know him, you all love him. Protector of Earth,  Knight of the GA, please welcome ADMIRAL VIR” The doors opened, and he had to turn his head against the bright light. The room was filled with gasps and then an eruption of cheering.
As his eyes adjusted, he looked up at the crowd trying to scream for help, though no one heard him.
He turned his head desperately searching the crowd for Sunny. He found her easily enough, as her seat was close. He tried to scream for help, but by the look on her face and the clapping of her hands he was horrified to see that she probably assumed he did this on purpose.
He tried yelling again but it was no use.
“And now the moment you have all been waiting for. Please help me to welcome back our reigning champion, mistress of mayhem, duchess of destruction, countess of calamity. Your reigning champion THE SLAYER!”
At the far end of the cage, he watched in shock, awe and, terror as the doors opened. Even over the roaring of the crowd he could hear the whirring of the iron eye suit before he saw it, could hear the clattering of metal boots against they round, and then watched wide eyed as the woman stormed onto the floor screaming and bellowing like an animal her arms raised into the air as the crowd absolutely lost their minds.
She circled the ring fists raised, and in that time he noticed….. One missing arm, and one missing leg.
His heart stopped in his chest.
He…. he recognized her.
He didn’t know her name, but he KNEW that face, he had SEEN her in the triage tent during the Drev war.
She was one of the steel-eye soldiers.
“Now everyone stand back from the cage. There was a sudden crackling noise and he watched in awe as the chain link was suddenly sparking with power, and a blue purple barrier flashed into existence, technology he recognized as cruel shielding.
That shielding had originally been designed to protect spaceships from high speed impacts. What kind of fight were they expecting?
He felt a jolt, and staggered forward as the suit was released and powered on giving control over to him.
“Make it a clean fight kids.”
He was about to try and run to the edge of the cage and scream for help, but at that moment, he heard a sharp metal crack and turned around to see that the slayer’s armor was down, and she was racing towards him.
He just had time to engage the steel plates which snapped down over his body before she was on him, punching him in the chest with an impact that would have killed him.
He was knocked backwards slamming to the ground and rolling over once with the power of the impact.
The crowd cheered and ooohed.
He rolled onto his back just in time to see her coming at him again, and through the orange-tinted visor of the helmet she could see the look on her face, an expression of pure rage.
She drew back her leg and slammed it down. He rolled to the side as he foot cracked against the floor. He pressed his hand against the floor pushing hard up and sending himself sailing through the air the servo motors and hydraulics roared as he used a single arm to toss himself up right.
He landed in a stagger and turned just in time to see her coming at him again. He dodged once and then twice as her fists blazed past him.
The crowd screamed.
She kept coming her rage coming out in her punches and kicks, powerful and continual with no stopping, but sloppy choosing quantity over quality.
He dodged to the right spring loading his legs and then threw his upward power into an uppercut punch that would have taken her head off if there was no armor. She was lifted nearly two feet off the ground with the power of his punch, and the clatter of metal on metal blasted through the stadium, She fell back slamming into the floor as the crowd roared.
He came after her, throwing himself over her and raising his fist back, punching at her shoulders and chest. Metal squealed.
Behind her visor, she roared, and somehow managed to bring her leg up.
He was kicked so hard in the chest, he thought for a moment his ribcage had been broken. It was such a powerful kick that it sent him across the ring and slamming into the barrier. There was a burst of bright blue as the shields flared.
His mouth opened and closed like a fish trying to suck in air, though his diaphragm would not cooperate. 
Using her hands and pushing back against the ground, she flipped herself into the air and back ont other feet before running at him.
He rolled to the side as her fist slammed against the barrier sending another wave of blue up and around them.
He kicked upward from the ground, hitting one of her hips and sending HER backward into the shields.
It didn’t knock her over, but now they were both on their feet. 
The next time they connected, it was with the sound of thunder as the Iron eye armor drove the two of them to greater feets of strength and aggression. The surge of puer adrenaline and power that the suit afforded it’s user had sent them both into a frenzy.
At every moment he couldn't be sure if he was seeing the red ashen sky of anin, or the blue barrier of the cage.
He screamed, catching her a devastating body shot, but the slayer came back with a knee to his chest and he skidded back across the floor. They were fifteen feet apart now. There was barely a pause before the two of them leaped towards each other soaring into the air and slamming up against each other with a thunderous clatter. His Kick hit first, a devastating shot to the pelvis that thrashed her back against the cage before slamming face first into the ground. HE hit the ground with an impact that should have broken his legs, but inside liquid shock absorbers protected his very human body.
He stormed forward as she rolled to her hands and knees.
Something was sparking and the plate above her right thigh was cracked
That didn’t stop her and from her knees she lunged forward grabbing him around the waist and sending the two of them rolling across the cage  exchanging punches and blows.
He hit his back and she drew back her fists repeatedly punching at his armor. He looked up as she hammered against the armor. He heard the screaming, animalistic, desperate, choking…. The same noises he himself had made on Anin…. Likeshe had never escaped that battleground.
But it was the expression on her face that did it for him. The  eyes somewhere far away, the lips twisted into an expression of pain,
He grew sick, and the anger faded away from him replaced with cold clarity like he had been doused with ice.
With his newfound clarity, he pulled back and used both arms to slam into her chest. She was thrown backward, and he rose to his feet, his chest armor sparking and dented.
She raced towards him again, but he used the reinforced forearms to block her punches with ease.
The more he blocked her the angrier she grew until her fighting, while horrifically powerful was no more than desperate swinging.
His eyes fell on the power source.
Her left leg, opposite to his.
It wasn’t Steel eye, a good facsimile, but not perfect. 
And with all the power he had he snapped in a sharp circle delivering a low round kick to the side of her prosthetic knee.
His suspicion of it not being steel eye was proven correct as the entire leg absolutely exploded under the impact of a real steel-eye prosthetic. Metal erupted in all directions peppering the cage with little flashes of blue light while the lower half of the limb was snapped cleanly in half. The sound it made was horrendous. As soon as her power source was destroyed she felt to the ground helpless.
The crowd sat in stunned silence for a moment before an eruption of cheers rose around them
He stood unsteadily on his feet shaking slightly.
He could hear the roaring of the announcer overhead proclaiming his victory but he only had eyes for her as, with a sharp hissing the suit plates pulled back, and the plugs were released. She ripped herself away from the armor, leaving it like a shell on the ground behind her. Without a leg she was left on her hands and knees.
She was so small, probably no more than five foot four to his six two.
Her hands were pulled into gnarled claws fingers digging into the floor below her, She forced herself to her feet with one arm and hopped and staggered her way from the arena holding onto the wall with her hands.
While the cheering was still going, he ignored it and followed after her. With a simple thought, the panels opened up before him, and the connections released, allowing him to walk out of the suit in a way that he could never have walked away from a steel eye.
He followed after her the cheering echoing in his head closed off as the door hissed shut behind him.
He found her sitting on a bench in what must have been the women’s locker room her head in her hands shaking violently like a leaf. He felt her pain shaking himself like he hadn’t done in ages as the post traumatic stress reared its ugly head woken from its dormancy.
He took a few deep breaths and walked over to sit next to her.
She was curled up her arms around herself.
He didn’t try to touch her, he knew it would only startle her
When she esteemed finally to calm down after long minutes, he felt his own voice raspy and strained, “I am…. So sorry I…. I didn’t agree to this.”
“Than you're a coward.” She hissed 
Her words didn’t sting, and when she looked up he saw her eyes tormented and in pain.
It made him sick. He reached out a hand placing it on her shoulder.
She locked eyes with him, and he saw something in hers that he had seen in the mirror years ago. It made him hurt to  see it. He had barely survived that pain, and here she was carrying it years later, far longer than him.
He couldn't help himself, He reached out and hugged her, hugged her tight, “I know what you’re feeling.” He said 
She didn’t struggle against him, and instead he felt warm tears drip onto his skin, “Why won’t it go away.” She whispered, “Why won't the pain go away. I’m so scared and angry all the time and I can't…. Let it go. It's like I can’t breathe. Every day I just say, if I can just beat one more person, if I can just prove to myself that I am the strongest, that nothing can hurt me than maybe I won’t be so afraid.”
He patted her back with one hand and listened.
Her words were familiar, and her pain brought tears to his own eyes which he didn’t bother to fight. That wasn’t the point, this was about feeling someone else’s pain, not proving how strong he was.
When she looked back at him, both of their faces were streaked with tears.
She seemed surprised,  “How did you do it….. How did you get away.”
He paused and there was silence for a moment, “Because of a dog.... And because I…. stopped trying to fight. Fighting is a reaction of a body who is scared, can’t be scared of something you are friends with.”
She looked up at him surprised and in pain, “You’re a braver man than me.”
Just then the door at the opposite end of the room was thrown open and she stormed in, “Adam, Adam are you alright.”
The slayer…. For he didn’t know her name, took one look at Sunny and tried leaping to her feet eyes wide in anger and fear.” Sunny pulled to a halt and Adam grabbed her hand.
“Calm down, stop! She’s with me.”
The slayer shot him an accusatory glance quickly wiping tears from her face, “HOW COULD YOU! HOW COULD YOU BE FRIENDS WITH A SCARAB” She snarled 
Adam felt his ears go red, “DON’T TALK ABOUT HER LIKE THAT.”
The words had passed from his lips before he even realized what he had said. And he clapped a hand over his mouth even as the room went silent. The slayer stared at him wide eyed.
He knew what he had done. He took her arms, “Look, I…. I know what you might be thinking but, it's more complicated. After the war I was a broken man, but I had a good support system, I got a dog and I calmed down enough to go back to work. For a little while I volunteered at an oxy clinic. There was a Drev there who had been injured during the war, and I…. I had to face my fears.” he paused, “We got along really well, and then I met sunny…. I tried to kill her at first, but then we saved each other’s lives a time or two. I spent some time with a Drev clan, learning about the war from their side. I’m Sentinel of a Drev clan now and I know their language.”
He stood, “Sure, I’ll never get away from the war completely, but I think I have gone as far as I can go, and I think you can too.”
The woman paused, and he expected anger, but she looked too tired to express anger and simply sat staring at Sunny.
He wasn’t sure what they would do, but then, to his surprise, Sunny stepped forward, her footsteps very cautious. When she got closer she knelt on the ground so she was no taller than the slayer. Her movements were slow.
“My name is Sunny, my father died during the war and my brother was permanently crippled. My clan was all but destroyed.” She paused then, “What is your name.”
The slayer paused, “Jane, my name is Jane.” Then with one shaking hand she reached out.
Sunny took the offered hand gently, her hand steady, “You are a true warrior Jane, but perhaps it is time to put down your weapons.”
All three of them nearly jumped out of their skin as the door flew open at the other end of the room.
“Glorious! Exciting! A real upset!”  The man paused suddenly in fear as Adam and Sunny stood. If his face showed the anger that he felt inside then this man SHOULD be scared.
He moved forward, but Sunny beat him to it, lifting him by the front of his suit and slamming him against the wall, “You are an exploitative coward with no honor.”
Adam crossed his arms over his chest, “I would have called you a raging fuckwit, but I guess that works too. I think the UNSC would have something to say abut you exploiting veterans.” He leaned up on his toes, “So why don’t you and I have a talk.”
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moononastring · a month ago
Big hello to you! Headcanon 'nonnie is back! Yes it' s not even a week without these two geeks and I already miss them! Wanted to say that I adored the last chapter! God finally these two cuties getting their shit together! Sooo.... Because it seems like I have to wait a little bit for the next chapter and I'm not really interested in learning for my finals.... I thought about Eris and Iris and wanted to share another few headcanons with you! :)
First of all.... Iris LOVES chocolate cake! And Eris is secretly a excellent chef! So after he leard about Iris choclate cake cravings he begins to improve his baking skills and yes... Of course his cake is fantastic! Maybe it's so good he can blackmail Iris with a piece of cake.... Maybe....
Sooo who am I'm trolling Iris and Eris are mates BUT I'm secretly living for the idea they are not. So in my hc eris and iris are finally in love and happy and everything but then iris'mate comes around a corner and everything is getting a little bit complicated. But iris won't leave Eris for a stranger. She knows Eris loves her and she loves him.
Oh of course Eris is a wine Connoisseur. So after a long day he wants a good Glas of wine and tells Iris everything about the smell and the taste and the aromas and flavors... And iris is like.... "yeah cool but PLEASE let me drink!"
I also saw your answer to my last hc's and maybe there were little tears in my eyes. I'm so happy you liked them!
Much love from me to you! Hope you enjoy your little break and come back again with a lot of new ideas and inspiration and hopefully a little cuddle chapter!
Hope you have a nice day! ❤️
It has definitely been a hot minute since you sent this to me but I'm slowly trying to go through my asks when I have the brain fuel for it.
Um I love that you sent me this?! 🥺❤This is so sweet that you're thinking of my babies enough to send headcanons SOB.
Let's discuss 😏
- You know what's funny? Iris isn't much of a "sweets" person. She'll eat them but doesn't crave them. Except velvet cake. She's 100% a red velvet lover and if there's anything food-related Eris can bribe her with, it's that HAHA. She's doesn't mind chocolate anything but red velvet? That's the sweet spot.
I am ALL for Eris being into baking. He's a stress baker too. Like he's perfected his skills by the sheer amount of stress he has to deal with on a daily basis lmao.
- Must you do this? Have this angst filled drama for them? HOW COULD YOU. [ REDACTED ] happens so uhhhh yeah.
- Big fan of this. Eris is one of the biggest wine snobs to ever exist. At first, Iris is a very good listener but as time goes on and the wine gets more tasty...she really just wants him to shut up and kiss her. A good drink makes her very handsy 😜
Thank you so much for reading and enjoying my babies! I'm slowly getting back into the flow of things since I took a small vacation so haven't gotten back into the writing groove yet but soon! I hope you did well on your finals!!!
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mooifyourecows · 7 months ago
34 and 46 !! u can choose whatever ship 😝
Right, so DaiSuga of course.
Hmmm let’s see. 34 is “Vacation” and 46 is “Blind Date”.
Let’s get into it 💪
Okay so first let’s figure out what sorta vacation.
A road trip? Cruise? Exotic resort? Excursion up Mount Everest?
Easiest ones would be a Cruise or Resort. Let’s pick Resort because I already have a fic where the characters go on a cruise and I don’t want overlap.
So, some real fancy Resort on a tropical island or something. 
Let’s say a group of people went together because of one reason or another. Like hmmmm a self-help kinda thing? Maybe Daichi went through some shit recently. A messy divorce. If I wanna get deep and serious about it, perhaps it was a very bad and traumatizing relationship or OOH, let’s go with the fact that Daichi is gay but has repressed his sexuality his whole life, wound up marrying a woman, and finally divorced her in his desire to follow his heart.
Okay good. This lets me make Daichi really lost about what to do next. He’s gone his whole life denying this part of himself, which could have bred some anxieties and mental illness. BUT! Lucky for him, there’s a support group for that! Kinda like grief counseling or AA, a bunch of LGBT people who have suffered the same kind of repression and don’t know how to embrace their true selves meet up once a week or so and talk about it.
Right. So, this gives me opportunity for ANGST but also really soft and beautiful “find myself, accept myself, love myself” development 👀
Daichi doesn’t buy into the whole counseling thing at first. Thinks it’s kinda weird and cheesy and c’mon, he’s a grown man who just so happens to be gay and it’s not that big of a deal okay get over it.
Except he DOESN’T get over it. Any time his friends manage to convince him to put himself out there and find himself a nice guy to date, he BACKS OUT. He’s just not ready, he tells himself. 
But it’s been a while. And he can’t deny the fact that he’s a little lonely and he really wants to find love. He’s a hopeless romantic, after all. Always has been. And now he’s at a point in his life when he’s admitted this big part of himself and he just wants to ACT ON IT but he CAN’T and ugh, it’s frustrating!
Soooooo, the group arranges this vacation! A getaway! “Let’s go to a resort and do our little counseling sessions, participate in some fun group activities, listen to some speakers who wrote books on acceptance!!” and ya know... the whole shebang.
Daichi thinks it’s stupid. No way is he doing that. Sounds stupid. And unnecessary. And weird. And stupid.
But his friends bully him into it. It’ll be good for him to get away. Bro, you’re so tense and snappy these days. Go swim in the ocean. Drink some pina coladas on the beach. Dance in the moonlight. Somethin like that.
Having reluctantly agreed, he sets off on this group vacation. And as soon as he’s there, he feels better about it. The resort is beautiful. The weather is fantastic. Everything is comfortable and chill and relaxing and hey, maybe this is JUST what he needs after all?
Now, in his group, he’s made some friends who have had similar experiences to him. Oikawa, Kuroo, Bokuto, the usual gang. I would most likely have little storylines for them too but we really only care about DaiSuga rn so let’s ignore them.
So, at this resort, Daichi is finally starting to loosen up. He’s doing exactly as he was told and drinking bahama mamas and wearing lame hawaiian shirts and he’s sitting in sand and looking for seashells and damn, he feels better already.
But the point of the getaway isn’t to just relax and catch some rays. Sure, those things are encouraged too, but people are supposed to be learning how to accept and love themselves, perhaps take a chance on seeking love and affection from other people.
And Daichi has just been SKIPPING all the group activities. Granted, they’re not REQUIRED... but c’mon man. At least TRY.
But all the while that Daichi is relaxing and having a good ol’ time, there’s this ONE guy that works at the resort and he seems to be EVERYWHERE. He pops up to offer Daichi another drink just as he’s falling asleep in a floaty in the pool. He’s there with fresh towels at his hotel door. He’s taking his order at the restaurant like seriously does this guy work EVERY job at this joint?
And on top of that, he’s so chatty. Every time he and Daichi cross paths, he takes time to talk his ear off. He’s a little obnoxious but it’s cute, in a way, and they wind up bantering and it’s a kinda fun. It’s a break from the relaxation and he manages to laugh and yeah okay the guy is good looking so Daichi isn’t TOTALLY against talking to him, even if he knows he’ll never get the courage to flirt with him like he kinda sorta really wants to.
Anyway, the people that arranged this whole vacation finally take Daichi aside and are like “bro wtf, you’re not even trying. Please participate in a few of the events.” 
Daichi feels a little guilty for snubbing the program so he reluctantly agrees to go to any event they choose for him.
Great, they say.
They have just the one, they say.
And thus Daichi is signed up to participate in a blind date. Ew, what the hell, why is that even a thing? I mean.. he gets it, sorta. But he soooo doesn’t want to do it. Like at all.
A blind date? He can’t even flirt. What makes them think he can date? A man? A MAN? They’re insane.
Still, he made a promise and Sawamura Daichi doesn’t go back on his promises! 😤 (not to mention Oikawa and the others would never let him hear the end of it if he backed out so ugh, there’s that too)
He gets all dressed up for his date and goes to the restaurant where he’s supposed to meet the guy. He gets seated at his table and he sits and he waits.
And waits.
And waits.
Wow. Okay. Not a good start. Daichi’s first attempt at a date and he gets stood up?
Could the night get any worse?
Yeah, because that cute guy he’s been seeing everywhere is his server and Daichi can tell that he knows what happened by the way he’s coming around every minute and making some other excuse like “maybe they got sick. it happens. people eat too much seafood and rum and that’s the end for them for the next few days.”
Daichi kinda wants to disappear. Then the mods for the group show up and apologize, say that the person they picked out for him to go on the date with had actually found someone that he really liked already and didn’t want to do the date anymore.
Well, at least Daichi tried. Now he can go back to getting drunk on the beach and soaking up 3000% of his recommended dosage of Vitamin D.
“I’ll do it”
wait, what?
The cute guy who has been bugging him all night pops up out of nowhere. “I’ll do it,” he says. “I can sit in as his blind date for the night.”
Wow, a pity date. Daichi wants to refuse, but the mods are thrilled and they accept it without hesitation. Yep, sure, yes, you are the date now. Daichi, don’t move out of that chair, you promised you’d do it so you gotta do it.
They leave them to it and they finally order some food.
“It’s not really a blind date anymore,” Daichi admits.
“Sure it is. The whole point of a blind date is to date someone you don’t know, right?”
“I’ve been seeing you everywhere since I got here.”
“Sure but do you know my name?”
Daichi looks at his nametag. “... Derrick.”
“You’d think, right?”
“What, you’re saying your name isn’t Derrick?”
“God no, do I look like a Derrick?”
“Not really. But why would you wear a name tag with someone else’s name on it?”
“Why would you go on a group retreat and not participate in any of the group activities?”
“Because they’re stupid.”
“I’ll tell you what’s stupid.” He removes the nametag and tosses it over his shoulder. “I don’t even work here and yet they keep letting me pretend like I do.”
Daichi just stares at him in silence. Like... what? What does he mean he doesn’t work there? He’s always wearing the uniform. And making drinks at the bar. And carrying around stacks of towels. And selling stuff at the gift shop.
What does he mean, he doesn’t work there?
“Who the fuck are you then?”
“Sugawara Koushi.”
“Am I supposed to know who that is?”
“Well I hope not. This wouldn’t be much of a blind date if you did.”
Their food arrives and Suga immediately starts eating, as if it wasn’t freaking WEIRD that he’s been pretending to work at the resort the past few days. 
Who the heck is this guy? Why is he so weird? Is he a stalker? Has he only been following Daichi around? No... he’s seen him running errands all over. Is he just bored? What the hell????
Their date goes on, and Daichi is able to put the weirdness out of his mind for a bit because like... Suga is so fun. He has interesting stories and his laugh is so loud and bright and contagious and okay c’mon, he IS super cute and Daichi is KINDA into him, even if his mind is totally REELING over the realization that he’s been pretending to work there.
They finish their date and it was actually really nice and Daichi kisses Suga on the cheek at the end of it and ahhhh why does he feel so shy and giddy all of a sudden? He’s a grown ass man but he suddenly feels thirteen again. He goes to bed hoping that he sees him again the next day.
He does. 
And he’s wearing the resort uniform, this time with a nametag that says Tiana. He offers Daichi a towel at the pool.
“Get your ass in here,” Daichi tells him.
“You’re the boss!”
Over the course of the rest of the vacation, Daichi and Suga get closer and it’s romantic and eventually Suga opens up, admits that he was taught by his past partner that there wasn’t much about him worth liking. In order to please them, he constantly pretended to be someone else.
He’s well aware that he’s not Derrick or Tiana or any of the other nametags he borrowed to cosplay as resort staff. He’s not delusional or crazy or anything like that, he swears. But... it’s nice. Pretending to be someone different. Someone he can invent to have the good qualities that he doesn’t have. Someone with a history that he wished he had.
He knows it’s weird and outlandish and creepy but he’s on vacation for fuck’s sake! So what if he wants to cosplay as a waiter or towel boy if it makes him feel good about himself? Huh?
So like naturally the drama would be Daichi not knowing if what Suga shows him is his true self. They have a little journey of self discovery and acceptance of both one another and themselves and fall in love and there’d probably be an emotionally fueled fight out on the beach at night that ends in passionate kissing and going back to one of their rooms and then the next morning is the day they go home but they have different flights, considering they came with different groups and they don’t know what it means for them.
Suga doesn’t know if Daichi will even like the Suga that exists back home who still kinda hates himself and wishes he was someone else and Daichi doesn’t know if he’s even capable of putting his anxieties aside and they say goodbye and it’s dramatic and emotional and yada yada
Then like uhhhhh obviously they would get together. Maybe Daichi runs off to Suga’s city and shows up at his apartment and he sees that Suga lives in a tiny, messy apartment and it’s unglamorous and not near as exciting as that guy he met at the resort but it STILL is him and Daichi wants to make him feel like it’s worth being unabashedly himself and he confesses his love and they kiss and the end I guess
somethin’ like that?
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For the Summer Event: Could I get headcanons of how Ace would a quiet moment with his s/o in a hammock, chilling in the summer air? Gender neutral pronouns would be fantastic but aren't mandatory.
More summer adventures with the fire boy~
Ace and you enjoy a quiet moment chilling in a hammock headcanon
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whenever an opportunity to spend some time with you presents itself, Ace is sure to make use of it. Luckily mid-summer seems to be a vacation time for many people, pirates included, so he usually doesn't have that much to do and can take breaks with you more frequently (even if Marco or other Commanders tease him for it and say that he shouldn't such a 'lazy bum')
he doesn't care about what others say though, especially when he spots you lying in a hammock, waving him over to join you. As if his life was depending on it, Ace sprints to your side and basically jumps on the hammock, causing the whole thing as well as the trees that it's tied to to shake. For a second you even fear that the strings might snap...
after scolding Ace for being so reckless, you shift around a bit to find the best position in which you two can lie together. Obviously there isn't enough space for you to sprawl out next to one another, so after a quick round of 'Rock, Paper, Scissors', it's determined that you'll get to lie on Ace's chest today
and he couldn't be happier to have you close like this. His arms automatically snake around your body and keep you in place while he gently rocks from side to side, making the hammock swing a bit
however, if Ace hasn't eaten something yet, he'll find it pretty hard to relax and stay still. Like a child that needs a distraction from the hunger, Ace will start to wiggle his feet and fingers around while asking you question after question to drown out the sound of his stomach growling
being aware of your boyfriend's gluttonous nature, you of course planned for this to happen and brought along a little something to calm his hunger. His eyes light up once he spots the plate of grapes you kept hidden underneath the hammock until now, and while you continue to lie on his chest, you also make sure to occasionally put a piece of fruit into his mouth to keep Ace from 'starving'
"Man look at you, you're a real livesaver (Y/N)! Don't know what I would do without you, haha!"
the food genuinely helps him relax a little, but there is another issue that's bothering Ace- the air itself is pretty hot already, and unfortunately his naturally high body temperature isn't doing you guys any favors during this heat... Jeez, if only he would have brought along a bucket of ice cubes or something to keep himself cold...
moments like this really make him think what might have been if he ate a... 'cooler' Devil Fruit. Maybe that way he could actually help you chill out during this heat! ...Although, if he had an icy fruit, then he wouldn't be able to keep you warm during winter, right?
while you continue to spoil him with grapes and other fruity snacks, Ace starts to gently move you around his chest a little so you won't 'heat up' from staying in the same spot on his body for long. His hands automatically move down to stroke over your back and he taps his fingers against your skin while asking about your day and if you've got anything planned for later (already hoping that your schedule is clear and he'll get to spend more time with you)
his questions get more and more nonsensical as time goes on though, which usually indicates that Ace is slowly starting to drift off to sleep- that happens almost everytime after he eats something though
he's still smiling contentedly while you're all cuddled up to him, now also starting to yawn a bit
"Starting to get a lil' tired, (Y/N)... Hey, do you think it's okay for us to take a small nap out here...? I promise I'll try not to heat up during sleep!"
that sure sounds like a good idea, right? ......but then, just as you are about to fall asleep, the strings that connect the hammock to the trees rip and you both (in a not-so-gracious way) fall to the floor
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giorno-plays-piano · a year ago
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Pairing: Loki x Reader
Warnings: yandere, obsession, stalking, death of minor character.
Words: 1953.
Summary: Meeting a cosplayer in Berlin isn’t a big deal, really. You don’t actually know why you are drawn to this guy in his stunning horned helmet, standing on the train with a seidr in his hand.
P.S. I own the plot of this story to amazing @caffiend-queen​ and my determination to write it to lovely @kinathewolf​ <3 Although I changed the story a little (this post made us discuss the idea), I hope you will like it!
Waking up when it was barely six, you kept yawning and rubbing your eyes while sitting on the train. You worked for one of the thousands of start-ups in Berlin, and your boss always liked to start pretty early. Well, despite waking up when it was still dark, you didn’t mind, really – the U-Bahn was much less busy now than thirty minutes later, and you didn’t have to stand the whole way to your station.
Today was a bit different, though. Not that there were too many people, but that one guy with his horned helmet looked so fantastic you simply couldn’t take your eyes off him. He had entered on the Bismarckstraße station, and since then you had been staring at him shamelessly. He was the spitting image of Loki, that god from Asgard, the one who had been released by Avengers not so long ago for his aid in protection of Earth from an invading alien force. Now Loki had his own fan club, and this guy was probably one of the squad. Seeing him in a full suit wasn’t surprising either – tomorrow was the first day of Comic Con, so he was probably going for a cosplay catwalk rehearsal before the event.
No one was really paying attention to him as he stood silently near the door with his seidr, but you just couldn’t help yourself. Come on, he was probably the most handsome guy you had seen in years, not even mentioning his gorgeous costume. Although you had never been Loki’s fan – for God’s sake, you still remembered that day in Stuttgart – this guy’s passion for cosplay was admirable.
When you reached Wittenbergplatz, a group of cheerful tourists entered the train, and the guy had to move further, taking a place close to yours. Of course, you still stared at him in awe, and he quickly noticed you. His piercing gaze finally made you realize it was unacceptable to gawk at someone like this, and you averted your eyes, feeling your cheeks growing hot. The cosplayer chuckled at your reaction.
“I’m so sorry!” You muttered, clenching the fabric of your jacket. “I just- ugh, I mean, your cosplay is stunning!” Now that you said it, you were just too humiliated to add anything. Why couldn’t you be like all other people who didn’t harass the poor guy with them staring? Of course, no one would be comfortable with some creepy girl watching over them.
But the guy didn’t look worried or embarrassed even the slightest bit. When you saw his face, you realized he was amused as he looked at you with a grin on his face. Now you even felt a little scared because there was something animalistic in his gaze.
“Thank you. I was spending day and night crafting this costume.” He was smiling, and you realized he was probably playing the role of Loki now.
Oh damn, of course. Being a cosplayer meant not only wearing a costume of your character but being this character, behaving like them, speaking like them, sometimes even moving like them. This guy was doing exactly this, and, to be honest, he was really good at acting since for a minute you believed he wasn’t just a mere human.
“I’m sure you will be the winner of the contest this year.” You smiled shyly at him, still embarrassed at your behaviour earlier, and the guy laughed at you a little. God, you felt so terribly awkward.
“Thank you. If my brother won’t show up, I’m sure I’ll have a chance.” For a second you thought there was something bittersweet in his eyes, but then it was gone, and the cosplay rose to his feet, shining in the electric light of the subway. “This is my stop. Have a good day, my lady.”
Of course, you barely nodded at him, felling like you’re gonna explode from the way he called you and how the guy bowed his head a bit at you as if you truly were some Asgardian goddess. Minutes later you would curse yourself for being so stupid to not even ask his cosplayer’s nickname – how on Earth were you going to find his profile on Facebook now? Since you were in the middle of a new marketing campaign, your boss would never let you leave tomorrow to visit Comic Con, and that was your only chance to ever see that amazing guy again.
Ugh, living with that useless brain of yours was quite a challenge.
You had already bid farewell to the cosplayer since you knew meeting him by chance again in a city as big as Berlin was impossible – especially if without his costume and wig and makeup the guy would be unrecognizable. The next evening you were sitting in the train just like all other evenings when you were coming late from work, a bag with a chicken sub in your hands along with an already cold cup of tea. You sighed, thinking of Comic Con and all the fun people were having there. Damn, next year you would definitely take a short vacation to finally visit the convention. Maybe you would have a chance to meet that mysterious guy again.
“It smells nice.”
You immediately raised your head, staring at the cold blue eyes of the guy you met yesterday’s morning. He was still wearing his horned helmet and shining golden armor, the Scepter in his hand. He sat close to you again, and you suddenly found the courage to smile at him widely. God, it was happening. He was really here, with you.
Was he coming back from Comic Con? You thought they finished way later, but maybe he was just tired to spend the whole day in this outfit – you could imagine how heavy it was – and left earlier. You couldn’t blame him, thinking of how many people probably wanted to take a photo of him during the day, too, and it was definitely tiresome as hell to pose in front of tons of people for hours.
“Would you like some?” You handed him your paper bag. “It’s a sub with chicken. I haven’t opened it yet.”
“Ah, it’s a very generous offer. It would be rude of me to decline it.” His smile sent chills down your spine, but you reminded yourself he was still playing his role. Anyway, what could he do? Follow you to your apartment in this outfit? Seriously? He would be stuck in the hallway with those horns of his.
You watched like the Loki-guy took a half of your sub and returned the other half to you, then taking a bite and chewing slowly. To your delight, he nodded, telling you he liked it without words, and you chuckled at him. Now he looked almost cute with his puffed cheeks as he kept biting more and more. Apparently, the sub wasn’t bad, and you dug in it enthusiastically, caring little for a few other passengers. No one was looking at you two, anyway.
Halfway through finishing his part, the guy stared questioningly at your paper cup of tea, and you smiled at him with confusion.
“You can have it, too, but it’s already cold, sorry.”
Now he was grinning like a Cheshire cat. Did he think it was funny? Was it because he thought real Loki would find it funny? You were too confused but decided not to ask. You looked silly enough yesterday when you were gaping at him with wide eyes. No more of this today! You couldn’t blow it if you wanted to ever see the guy again.
“It’s quite alright. Let me help you.” He carefully lowered his seidr so it touched your cup, and in the next moment you saw a soft blue glowing surrounding it. It was coming directly from the Scepter, and you literally opened your mouth while staring at it wide-eyed. Wait, did this guy put something inside the seidr? Like, a light bulb or something? God, it was beyond your imagination!
But before you started throwing questions at him, you suddenly saw a wisp of steam coming from your tea and felt how the cup grew hot in your hand. Oh shoot, it definitely wasn’t just some light bulb! His Scepter was a real machine!
You probably looked like a little kid, your eyes shining and jaw dropped at the sight of something that looked like a miracle to you, and Loki-guy chuckled softly. He was seemingly content with your reaction as you even sniffed your tea a little bit to feel it really was hot again. But when you brought the cup to him, thinking he wanted to drink, he gently refused it.
“Thank you, but you have already given me enough.” His smile was much softer, and your cheeks grew hot again at his kindness, though it was you who shared your food with him. Strangely, it was like this stranger had some effect on you, and you smiled back at him, lowering your head to have a sip of tea.
However, the next moment the guy furrowed his brows, looking somewhere behind you, and you saw him lifting his seidr again, pointing at something behind your back. You missed his concerned gaze, but not noticing the blinding light coming from the Scepter was absolutely impossible – for a second you almost lost your eyesight, squeezing your eyes shut and clenching the paper cup in your hand. What was that?! But before you got truly scared, the light had disappeared, and all you saw was that Loki-guy sitting close to you with a piece of chicken sub wrapped in a napkin in his hand. His Scepter looked the same as before, no blue glowing coming from it. Wait, you didn’t imagine this blinding light, did you? It was here just a second ago!
As you tried to turn back to see what was happening, the stranger suddenly stopped you, his warm hand on your shoulder as he leaned closer to you, smiling, “Your tea is going to be cold again.”
“Yes, b-but-“ You gawked at him and then stared at his seidr, unsure what to say. “I-I mean, have you seen that light? Did it come from this thing?”
You heard someone behind you letting out a sudden scream and smelled metal and plastic melting. It was disturbing enough as it was, but then you realized you smelled the burning flesh searing from someone’s bones.
The Scepter. The guy’s resemblance to the Asgardian God of mischief. Shit.
Before you tried turning again to see what was left of the seats behind you, Loki’s grip on your shoulder became painfully strong. You watched him leaning even closer to you in slow motion, the world around you slowing down as the man whispered to you in a dangerously low voice, “Don’t look back. You don’t want to see what is left of that creepy man who was staring at you all the time, do you, dear?”
Frozen on the spot, you barely nodded, your eyes not leaving Loki’s pale face as he smiled, letting go of your shoulder and touching your arm surprisingly gently instead. You heard the sounds of crying and whining, people around you scattering to the different part of the car to be as far as possible from a man in the horned helmet. But you just couldn’t move from your place, glued to your seat, an Asgardian God looming over you.
“I am grateful for you sharing your meal with me. I’d like to thank you properly,” he said softly, and you swallowed your tongue instead of letting out a loud scream. “Let’s leave on the next station. I know a few nice places in Mitte.”
Tags: @finleyjayne​ @alexakeyloveloki​  @helenaeisenhower​ @villanellevi​ @hurricanerin​ ​@void-hoechlin @abyssaint​ @heeeyitskay​ @chris-evans-indian-fanfic​ @rosalynshields​ @brattycherubwrites​ @sllooney​ @angrythingstarlight​
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How Much Should The
"Minimum" Wage REALLY Be?
A Thesis by Some Random Dude on the Internet
Alright. So let's dive in, shall we?
According to research (yes, I'm not above linking you to articles ABOUT said research, because I imagine you're a layman/laywoman, and don't have the time to go look through the ACTUAL research yourself; you're busy people and I make the assumption that at least 70% of you aren't idiots, but for the 30% who are, it's easier if the numbers are dumbed down with the whole research jargon cut out), you SHOULD be working roughly 38 hours per week for 46 weeks a year (with a six-week vacation) in order to keep you stimulated, keep you productive, and keep you happy. That's not just conjecture; it's researched, accepted, and (in at least a handful of countries) implemented fact. The 40-hour work week is mind-numbingly abysmal for worker productivity and general morale, let alone working 52 weeks a year, every year. You aren't a mindless drone; you're a human being, and part of that means dealing with this jumbling mess of emotions, stresses, and general conditions of being more than a machine, performing the same tasks day in and day out.
The above pertains to humans in general. 38-hours a week, 46 weeks per year, should be what the average person works to be considered "full-time" employed by any standard, as this is that sweet spot where people are both completely comfortable with themselves and their work, and at both their peak performance without cutting into the rest of their lives (it also offers the ability to get some much-needed sleep, which the human body needs in order to recover). Past this, we'll be moving on to the United States specifically, as this is the country in which I live, and the numbers I bring up past this point relate to how things are here specifically (so feel free to ignore the rest of this if you aren't bothered by economics in the United States, don't live here, or just don't care). By all means, take the above paragraph and go with God (or whichever deity/ies that you choose to believe in, including yourself if you have none).
In America, the average rent of an apartment is $1,468.00 per month. This means, to have a roof over your head for the year, it will cost you (on AVERAGE; we're not going with specifics here, because that way leads to death for a good portion of the country) $17,616.00 per year to have a place to call home.
Going with your home, you're going to need the utilities to both stay comfortable AND functional throughout the year. For sake of argument, I'm going to use the SMALLEST NATIONAL AVERAGES for these (to both demonstrate the lowest you should, on average, have to spend for these things, AND to still show you how fucked up this whole mess of a system is that we have here). So let's assume that you're going to need electricity ($65.33), heating / cooling ($80; we make the assumption that this is either gas, additional electric costs, or other means of fuel), sewer ($14.40; we'll assume that this is what you'll spend on septic maintenance if you aren't connected to a sewer line), water ($17.04), and trash ($12.00). These are the necessities to make sure that your home is livable, bringing your total expenditures per month for utilities to $188.77, or an additional $2,265.24 annually. Meaning that you would need (in total so far) $19,881.24 annually to have an apartment with utilities.
But you need to work, right? And almost all employers require some sort of phone (an additional $15.00 per month) and / or internet (an additional $56.60 per month). So let's couple these together for an added total of $71.60 per month, $859.20 annually, making your total for a home with utilities and internet AND a working phone to $20,740.44 every year.
Now, people get hungry. You're going to need to eat. Eating is one of the few joys in life that doesn't get you arrested for indulging in public. To take the average for this, I'm going with the lowest average that households in America spend on food per month ($314.00) and choosing that as a decent benchmark. (Continued below)
Is it somewhat frugal? Of course it is. You're talking about roughly less than $11 per day on food. But let's say you're a thrifty shopper and are able to support your budget by cooking your own meals from scratch. This is still an additional $3,768 annually towards food alone, bringing your total annually to $24,508.44.
Let's assume (for the sake of argument, because goodness knows that people like to argue) that your transportation needs are covered by public transportation. And I understand that's a big assumption, especially being that 45% of Americans do not have access to public transportation. But you're the lucky one who lives close to a bus line, or your work is close to where you've chosen to pick this fantastic apartment that supplies you with everything you need, so this isn't a problem for you (plus, it only goes to show exactly how fucked people who do pay for gas, or public transportation, or don't have access to any transportation really are in this country, so just go with me here).
Let us also assume that you don't have any expenses for entertainment monthly. You're stealing someone else's logins for Netflix, or you play Minecraft or League of Legends in your spare time, so you don't need to pay anything additional towards entertaining yourself. But you'd still need to pay for a modest vacation, so let's say you still need roughly $1,000 every year to be able to not go completely insane and end the suffering of your pointless, meaningless existence. That brings your total up to $25,508.44 annually. That should be all of your basic needs taken care of; shelter, food, utilities, clean water, etc., etc., etc.
(We're also assuming you don't need any clothing, because clothes are for rubes who think pockets are fancy. Back in my day, we'd just walk around naked with a pocketbook up our arses, 'cause that's the American way.)
So let's hop back to the beginning. To be a productive, enthusiastic member of the American work force, you should work 38 hours per week for 46 weeks out of the year. That means 1,748 working hours every year, right?
BUT you would also need to factor in your taxes. Those damned income taxes. So somehow, we'd need to make sure that you were earning $25,508.44 AFTER taxes, to be able to pay for all of this. In America, your first $9,875 is taxed at 10%, meaning you pay outright $987.50 for the first bracket of what you earn. Everything past that, up to $40,125, is taxed at 12% (and no, we don't need to know how to do your taxes past that point; Mr. Moneybags over here, pretending like they actually EARN a living at the third tax bracket, tsk, tsk). So let's do some funky math here for a second.
If your first $9,875 is taxed at 10%, this leaves you with an additional amount that will need to be taxed at 12% in order to leave you with the total. So what minus $987.50 is then multiplied by 88% (as 12% is taken away in taxes past that point) to equal $25,508.44?
After some hasty scribbling on a notepad, it comes to $28,762.43. This is what you'd need to earn gross annually in order to come away with a net $25,508.44 after income taxes.
KEEP IN MIND: This is not reducing your other taxes, state taxes, or whatever else you pay into the system out of your wages. It also leaves you with EXACTLY NOTHING in your pocket. It is ONLY what you need in order to literally survive and be effective in your job AND have $1,000 a year that you can spend on a vacation.
From there, it's pretty simple math. You divide $28,762.43 by 1,748, to give you a grand total of a little more than $16.45 per hour.
So even if you are working at optimal efficiency and productivity, working 38 hours a week for 46 weeks out of the year, and earning $28,762.43 before taxes to cover your $25,508.44 in average annual expenses, you would need to earn more than $16.45 an hour before you actually had anything to show for it (i.e. savings, emergency repairs, building a utopian society, etc.).
Thank you for attending this TED Talk on why $15 isn't enough.
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myoxisbroken · a year ago
The River Runs Deep, Chapter 1
A/N: I wrote this yesterday as a part of @darkficsyouneveraskedfor​'s Writer Game on Tumblr. I was given the title The River Runs Deep. I hope that you like my interpretation of it!
Also available on AO3
Characters: Loki/Female!Reader
Series Masterlist
My Loki Fic Masterlist Entire Fic Masterlist
Rating: Teen & Up
Words: 1981
Summary:   Loki always keeps to himself, never attending group social events with the other Avengers. Is it because that's what he wants, or because that's what he thinks everyone else wants? You're determined to draw him out of his self-imposed isolation and into the group.
Warnings: None - basically just fluff and feelings! Fluffy feelings!
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The Avengers debriefing ended and everyone began making plans for the evening. Half of the group wanted to let off some steam on the dance floor at a local bar; the other half wanted to curl up on the couches in the lounge with bowls of popcorn and their favorite candy, watching movies until they fell asleep. Sometimes you enjoyed the pulsing music vibrating through your body at the club as you left your stresses and worries behind while you danced the night away. Tonight, though, the comfy overstuffed blue sofa in the corner of the lounge was calling your name.
Movement out of the corner of your eye caught your attention and you looked up to see a tall, sinewy form disappear through the doorway of the conference room. You felt for the god of mischief. Sure, he could project intimidation like nobody's business, but you were of the belief that he did that as a defense mechanism. Create the distance himself and he would not have to deal with the possibility of rejection. 
You had only been a team member for four months, but it seemed plain to you. You wondered why the others had not yet figured that out, but one of your gifts was a keen perception of the emotional state of others, so perhaps it was not as evident to the rest of the team as you thought. 
You must have stared at the empty opening longer than you had realized, because the next thing you knew, Thor was speaking softly from where he sat beside you.
“Do not trouble yourself, my lady. Loki prefers solitude.”
“How do you know?”
“He has always kept himself separate from the rest of us, never choosing to be sociable when the opportunity arises.”
“Well, has anyone ever asked him? As in, invited him specifically to one of the group activities? I’ve seen the two of you together, obviously, coming back from dinner or wherever. He spars with Bucky and Steve sometimes. I’ve even seen him playing the occasional game of ping-pong with Peter, although I suspect he goes way easy on the kid. But has he been asked to come to something with a bigger group?”
“Of course! I asked him many times and finally realized that it is not something he wishes.”
“When did you ask him? When he first came here and everyone was paranoid that he was going to try something sinister? When he could feel eyes upon his back, wherever he went? I’m not saying people weren’t justified to worry then, but he’s been here for over a year now. He’s proven himself to be valuable and trustworthy. But I still see people watching him warily sometimes, and he is fully aware of that. You have to know it.”
“I confess that I had not given it any thought in some time. I had assumed that Loki wished to be left alone and wanted to respect his wishes. It is how he has always behaved. Although I suppose he did not keep to himself nearly this much when we were on Asgard.”
“I think that there’s a lot more going on under the surface with him than he would have everyone believe.”
Thor looked at you thoughtfully as you pushed back your chair and left the conference room.
All the movie-watchers were in the lounge and the first film was just getting started. Bucky had suggested the Lord of the Rings trilogy, Steve jumped on board with that idea, then Peter had insisted that they had to be the extended editions.
“The theatrical release doesn’t even include Saruman’s death! It’s preposterous!” he’d said, and you had to agree. Besides, more Eomer was always a good thing, and you liked the additional scenes at the beginning with Frodo and Sam. Of course, you’d probably be asleep long before it got to Saruman’s end, but it was the principle of the thing.
You were settled into the corner of your couch, a bowl of popcorn in your hands when you realized you had forgotten to grab the Milk Duds you liked to mix into your popcorn. There were usually stashes of candy in the kitchen. The Avengers had a shockingly high proportion of sweet tooths among them.  You hopped up and hurried to the kitchen, telling them not to bother pausing. You’d be right back. 
“And nobody touches my popcorn!”
You sauntered through the doorway and went to the cupboard where the candy was usually kept. You opened the cupboard door and rooted around in there, discarding Junior Mints, Goobers, Swedish Fish, Cookie Dough Bites, and the Wasabi Kit Kats that Sam insisted were delicious but that you thought sounded disgusting and had never had the desire to try. You even looked past the raisins that Steve insisted be kept in that cabinet, stating that they were "nature's candy," when you knew darn well that he had a stash of Reese's Miniatures in his quarters, which Bucky may or may not have swiped and shared with you a time or two before. 
Where were the dang Milk Duds?
You huffed out a sigh of frustration.
“Something wrong, sætleik?” came a mellifluous voice from a few feet behind you.
Fantastic. You were bent over, butt sticking way out, head in the cupboard. That had to be a super flattering angle. This was mortifying. But at least Loki sounded amused.
“Um, I’m trying to find some Milk Duds, but I guess we’re out again. We seem to run out of those all the time lately.”
“Ah, I see. You might try looking in the upper cabinet behind the mixing bowls.”
Brow furrowed in confusion, you went to that cupboard and pulled out the stack of bowls. Sure enough, there were four boxes of Milk Duds at the back of the cupboard.
“How did you know they were there?”
“I may have moved them a week or so ago.”
You looked at him, waiting for him to tell you why he moved them, but evidently he was not going to volunteer the information.
“Why?” you asked.
“Barnes and Wilson have been taking them. I believe that they are doing it simply to pester you."
"So you hid them…for me?" you asked, hesitantly. 
To your astonishment, Loki actually blushed. At least, you thought it was a blush. What was that about? Self-consciousness because his clandestine kindness had been discovered? Was there more to it than that?
"For you, or for others who might wish to partake of them."
"Oh. Well, thank you!" you answered brightly, feeling foolish that you had thought he was doing it just for you. 
"Enjoy your films," he said, turning to leave again without whatever it was he had come for in the first place. 
"Loki, wait! You should come with me," you told him as you closed the cupboard again, the remaining Milk Duds safely hidden away. 
Loki looked startled, then wary. 
"Why?" he asked. 
"Because I think you'd like these movies. And because you earned a relaxing night off chilling out and eating junk food and sinking back into one of the couches. And because I would like for you to come.”
You watched the emotions play over his face in minuscule movements. You deliberately turned off the part of you that could clearly read them, not wanting to invade Loki’s privacy. But you were more certain than ever that he longed to be included.
“Thank you, but I do not think the others would be comfortable with me there.”
“Nonsense!” you said as you approached him. “They’ll be happy that you came.”
Taking a chance, you grabbed his hand and tugged as you walked through the door. “C’mon!”
Loki must have been willing, since there was no way you would have been able to budge the slender yet muscular god if he had been intent on staying where he was or, worse, pulling away and retreating to his quarters. You hauled him along with you to the lounge, heading for your preferred couch.
Sam and Bucky had taken over the space while you had been gone, the little punks. 
“Wilson and Barnes, this is your only warning. Move or I will give you both a beatdown," you said quietly as you approached. 
“Come on, doll,” said Bucky with a grin. “Do you really think you could take on one of us, let alone both of us?”
You narrowed your eyes and stared at Bucky, watching as the grin faded a little.
“Alright, alright, we’re goin’!”
As they passed Loki, Sam gave him a manly-yet-friendly tap on the shoulder, and Bucky did that dude head-nod that guys always do. Loki inclined his head at each of them, nearly smiling. The two of you took the spaces they had just vacated and you grabbed your popcorn bowl, checking to make sure that the duo had not eaten your snack. Lucky for them, it appeared untouched.
You settled into the cushions and saw Loki doing the same out of the corner of your eye as Peter beamed at him before returning his attention to the screen. The others had been zoning out, and if they had noticed Loki’s arrival, no one minded. You felt him relaxing as time went on and no one said anything snarky to him. You were glad that Tony had opted for the club tonight. You liked the guy, but sometimes he didn’t know when to keep his mouth shut, and you sensed that this evening could be a turning point for Loki.
After a few minutes, you moved the bowl a few inches closer to him. “Popcorn?” you asked.
“Hey, you never share your popcorn with me!” said Sam.
“Shut it, Sam. You always seem to find plenty to eat without my help.”
“Shh! You’re being disruptive,” you chided him, smirking at him before he turned back around to watch Gandalf shooting off fireworks for Bilbo’s 111th birthday celebration.
Loki had watched the exchange with veiled amusement. He moved his hand over, hesitated for a moment, then took a handful and began to eat. He seemed to like the browned butter and parmesan you had put on it.
Your fingers sometimes brushed as you continued to eat, and you felt a flutter in your stomach whenever they did. Which was ridiculous, because the two of you had barely spoken and he was just messing with Sam and Bucky when he hid the Milk Duds and he had only come because you had literally dragged him with you. 
He seemed to enjoy the movies. You managed to stay awake through nearly the entire trilogy, and he watched it attentively. But every now and then, when you would look at him to see his reaction to a scene, he would be looking at you instead of the screen.
After one such moment, when he seemed to be looking at you particularly intently, you whispered softly, “What?”
“Thank you, sætleik,” he answered.
The way that he was looking at you made your cheeks heat up. You wondered what sætleik meant, and perhaps you would ask him sometime. But you felt inexplicably bashful for some reason so, for now, you settled for smiling at Loki and returning your attention to the Battle of Helm’s Deep.
Something was happening here. At the very least, Loki seemed comfortable, and you hoped that he would be participating in more of these group social events, even if you had to badger him and drag him along with you each time. At the most, perhaps this was the beginning of something more. Either way, you were happier than you had been in some time. You wore a pleased smile on your face until you fell asleep snuggled into the couch, your head now somehow leaning against Loki's strong shoulder, not noticing the matching smile on the god’s face.
sætleik = sweetness
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greenninjagal-blog · a year ago
Deja vu pt4
Hey guys! Sorry for the long wait! Who’s ready for 19 pages of Remus angst? If you’re new around [Here] is the first part, and [Here] is the previous chapter for those who want a refresher!
(To that one person who asked if Remus’s vision would get any clearer: I am so sorry.)
Summary: Remus has been able to see the future since he was eight years old. He thinks that maybe his mother would have loved him a bit more if he hadn’t. (aka, Remus calls home.)
Words: 7879
TW: attempted suicide, blood, death, bad parenting
Read on Ao3 || My General Writing Masterlist
By the time he’s twenty one and four months, Remus is no stranger to cross country traveling. He’s been all over the country, all over the back roads, the main roads, the highways and the interstates. He’s had paper maps from greasy gas stations stuffed in his go-bag since he was eighteen, and keeps souvenirs of his travels in the form of pins and buttons he’s clipped on the shoulder strap. 
He had made it a habit to never travel with a plan. He had chosen directions on a whim, following signs when he felt the need to sleep somewhere, and picked up cars from dealerships when he had been too lazy to use his casino-breaking powers to get the cash to pay for it legally. 
Travelling is something Remus has always been familiar with. The freeing feeling of pressing his foot to the floor and blowing through endless cornfields, of burning more gas than strictly necessary, of getting himself lost on backroads without cell service-- He loves driving with the windows down and the long distances. During the billions of times that he had slept in whatever car he was using, he had enjoyed climbing on the hood and staring up at the stars until sleep dragged him away again. 
Travelling with Dee, however, is something else entirely.
At first it had been different just because there were two of them: the presence of another person made him feel the need to talk to fill the silence, made him actually have to answer the “where are we going” question, made him unsure of if what he was doing was the right thing to do.
(Not the morally right thing-- no that he knew the answer of. He meant the right thing as in the thing that Dee wanted him to do. He imagined in those first few weeks he acted a lot like a pet dog, always checking back to Dee to see that he was doing good, and wagging his metaphorical tail whenever the Shapeshifter gave him that delicious validation.)
Travelling with Dee almost means the death of sleeping in the car they were using. The Shapeshifter believes him when he says that they aren’t gonna be attacked in the night or the police aren’t going to come knocking on their windows, but Dee, as much as he tries to pretend he’s new to riches and money, is a fucking elitist. 
“Why sleep in the backseat when there is a hotel with a bed and breakfast right there?” He used to ask, sometimes still asks, never needs to ask anymore. “Why act like a ruffian without a home when I can live like a king?”
And, well, Remus had looked into his eyes for too long and gotten lost in the depths of them. Dee was pretty, you see? And Remus’s stubbornness was a learned trick that Dee knew how to circumnavigate. 
Travelling with Dee means hotels with beds and fake names in a log book. It means showers with mini bottles of shampoo and crisp covers freshly cleaned and watching the stars from the balconies while Dee smelled his money (again). It means complimentary breakfasts that aren’t super great, but they’re something that Remus hadn’t had in a while and sharing a room with another person who didn’t trust him not to run off with all their money, counting the near silent inhales and exhales, and trying not to think about stupid things like “family vacations” or “Just share the bed, Roman, its one night!”
It means no more stealing cars, because Dee rations out and puts aside money in the most atrocious order-- something that he won’t describe to Remus beyond “you’re cute, but not that cute” no matter how many times Remus asks, or when he asks. Somehow he always has the money for a new car and food and a hotel room and anything else they saw and wanted for whatever reason. 
(“Not that one,” Remus had said, grabbing Dee’s arm before he could even look in the direction of the car in the lot. And Dee blinked but didn’t ask any questions. He didn’t pick out any other silver sedans and Remus managed to make it all the way to the bathroom before vomiting his guts up. Funny, isn’t it? That he can still see blood on a bumper and hear the screams of ambulance sirens thirteen fucking years later?)
Some things are the same, though.
Remus takes note of them as he drives calmly through the evening, like he used to in the four years where he had between running away from everything he’d known and running into Dee’s arms. The air still feels nice with the windows down, his eyes still burn when the opposite traffic forgets to turn off their high beams, the radio is still soft and soothing and plays along to his heartbeat. Dee’s still curled up in the passenger side seat, wearing a fresh pastel peach button up tucked into black dress pants and dress shoes bought straight from the rack. 
He’s still cute like this, vulnerable, with scales on display and his seatbelt imprinting a line on his opposite cheek. There’s a duffel bag of stolen money at his feet, all counted and tagged in his pocket notebook that he never lets Remus flip through. In the backseat are two more duffel bags with just Remus’s atrocious half of the money and another couple of suitcases that contain their material possessions.
Something stirs in Remus’s gut at the sound of Dee’s soft snores. He really is asleep, really does trust Remus not to drive them into a guard rail or off a cliff or into another car. He really trusts that Remus hasn’t been hiding a switchblade in his sleeve, just waiting for the right moment to plunge it into Dee’s throat before making an abstract art masterpiece out of his blood. He really trusts Remus not to park somewhere on the shoulder and take all the money they have between them and disappear in the night without a trace.
He trusts Remus.
And he doesn’t have a clue how much that means. 
Well, maybe he’s guessed a little. After all, Remus still gets that surprised look on his face when Dee actually listens to him, still finds himself rolling that purple coin from the Basilisk Casino that he’s kept, still gets a little shaky when he tells certain futures because this is it, this is gonna be the time where Dee says he’s stupid and crazy and dumb and he’s not gonna listen--
Trust was a hard thing to come by after Remus turned eight. How can you trust the crybaby that starts sobbing every time someone gets a little scratch? How can you trust the psycho kid who needs medication to go to school? How can you trust Roman’s Weirdo Brother when he says he can see the future like some sideshow circus attraction?
But Dee trusts him enough to keep travelling with him, enough to keep robbing banks with him, enough to let down his glamour and show his real self while he’s sleeping.
It's all well and good and fine.
Remus wishes he trusted himself the way Dee trusts him.
The music playing is still something that Dee had picked out hours before, classical and Remus doesn’t hate it necessarily, but he did turn it down so slow that the engine is louder than those stupid violins. Remus has an appreciation for people who find the screeching strings pleasant rather than just annoying, he swears. But the rumbling of the engine, the bump of every uneven bit of road, the slow winding turns is a familiar comforting melody.
Home, Remus knows, is more of the road than any building he’s ever been in. It’s more of the feeling of Dee’s hand in his over the console, more of the smell of pine tree air fresheners mixed with new car, than any concrete solid place he’s ever been.
Which is silly, maybe. Remus thinks if he squeezes his eyes closed really hard he can still picture the layout of the house he and Roman lived in. (Not “home”, not “the place he grew up in” and he definitely didn’t grow up in there-- because it wasn’t until he was seventeen and sleeping in gas station bathrooms in two hour spurts that he learned how the world really was.)
His mother really tried, Remus thinks. She really tried to be a good person, a good mother, a good role model. She made sure they cleaned their rooms and taught them how to do the laundry. She made sure he brushed his teeth and was fed and healthy and smil--
Listen when he--
Helped him take his med--
She tried, okay. Remus thinks that if he had been a normal child he might have grown up happy. He thinks that if she had had any other son to twin with Roman she would have been a fantastic Mom. He thinks that if he hadn’t gotten his power at eight fucking years old he would have been able to articulate what the fuck was going on and they might have had a chance.
Then he wonders what the hell they would have had “a chance” at. 
And then he gets angry about himself even thinking about it and---
---drives his car directly into the guardrail. Killing himself instantly with the force of the side collision and the air bad while Dee gasps for life he desperately was clinging too and the car that had been behind them for three exits screeches to a stop a dozen yards ahead of them and with passengers scrambling from their pickup truck screaming for help---
---drives his car directly into the guardrail. Killing himself instantly with the force of the side collision and the air bad while Dee gasps for life he desperately was clinging too and the car that had been behind them for three exits screeches to a stop a dozen yards ahead of them and with passengers scrambling from their pickup truck screaming for help---
---drives his car directly----
 And Remus keeps driving on the quiet road, switching lanes so he’s in the middle lane rather than the side one.
Its not a good night.
Well in all honestly it hasn’t been a good day either. They had spent most of it driving and Remus hadn’t meant to be quiet, but his thoughts had been so loud he forgot that not everyone could hear them. They felt like screams, like a blow horn directly into his ear drums, like his brain was being torn apart with each and every fire of a neuron. 
Thinking hurt. He hated to do it. 
Dee must have picked up on it, must have taken note of his change in attitude since that morning when he had grabbed the car keys off the dresser and hoisted their bags into the car. He had asked once, Remus thought, maybe. It would have been out of character for him not to ask what Remus was doing with the keys, but if he had asked he had only done it one time.
And Remus hadn’t answered it and Dee hadn’t asked again.
He also hadn’t asked where they were going. Remus thinks that was blessing, a mercy, a silent kindness that he was too selfish to even say thank you for. He didn’t know where he was driving to, just that he had blown through a full tank and a half and somewhere over ten hours of driving and that they had crossed timezones again.
And the concept of timezones had made him angry enough to slam his foot to the floor and nearly run a blue minivan off the road entirely.
He switches hands he’s steering with, flexing and stretching his digits to the rhythm of his heartbeat.
There’s four hours now. 
And Remus knows this because even if he hadn’t graduated highschool he knew how to read a clock. Which was what he had been doing all day: watching the speedometer and watching the clock and watching his blood pressure rise with every mile he drove.
There’s four hours between them now. Which means nine o’clock for him, which means the dim sky, which means the peaks of the faint stars through the grey cloudy sky, the closed mom-and-pop shops and the dwindling number of other cars-- which means that everything around him currently is not the same thing for someone who is four hours behind them.
Dee is asleep, shifting tiredly, when Remus, grinds his teeth together so hard and violently and angrily.
His skin feels wrong, too tight, too small. It feels like someone else and he’s only borrowing it. It twists around his lungs, constricting around him like a python and stealing every breath from his chest and getting smaller with every inhale. 
His legs burn with a restless energy and his eyes hurt from driving for so long and he’s hungry.
The radio fuzzes as he drives, as they reach the end of the station's signal range, as the violins finally die and leaves them with just static. The noise is grating in a way that Remus can’t quite place, something more annoying than the screeching of his own thoughts that won’t shut up. He reaches blindly for the power button, trying not to take his eyes off the road because he doesn’t want to plow them into the back end of the SUV they’ve been trailing behind for the better part of fifty miles. 
The radio goes off. 
Remus’s thoughts do not. 
The cloudy sky makes it darker than it actually is, making him turn on his headlights and make him growl at the lane reflectors he comes across every so often. The words on the signs might as well be written in Greek because Remus doesn’t bother reading them at all.
He tries not to. 
But there’s one that spells out “RESTSTOP” and it gouges its phantom fingers in Remus’s brain, refusing to leave him alone after he sees it. He drives and he tells himself it's because they haven’t eaten all day, because Dee probably needs to use the restroom, because he needs a stretch. Dee hasn’t complained at all, you know? Remus owes him a little bit of a stop. Maybe they can look for a fancy hotel with a penthouse edition and get himself drunk on the minibar delights.
That’s all.
It hasn’t nothing to do with the four hour time gap.
Dee doesn’t wake even when he pulls into a well lit parking spot. There’s a handful of other vehicles in the lot: a deep green hatchback with two bikes strapped to the top, a jeep with no doors and a lot of mud, a group of sixish motorcycles and the owners of them standing nearby talking quietly. He counts at least seven eighteen wheelers resting for the hour all with a collection of name brands and graffiti on the backs. 
 Remus puts their own car in park and sits back, taking it all in. 
He’s no stranger to travelling, hasn’t been for a long time. At twenty one years and four months old he’s no longer scared of the dark and certainly not scared of going to a public restroom. The signs clearly mark eating areas, restrooms, the dark, creepy, not-at-all well lit path into the woods for those who need to stretch and want to be murdered by psycho crazy forest clowns. There’s vending machines that take credit cards for sodas and packaged foods and Remus even spots one selling cheap portable phone chargers.
There’s a payphone booth.
Three actually.
None of them are in use, currently.
Remus looks back at the clock in their car-- its a quarter past nine-- and wishes that he couldn’t do math so well in his head. Maybe if he hadn’t been able to count he would have been able to take the stupid urge by is scrawny neck and throw it out the window while he drove right on by. Maybe if he hadn’t been able to keep track of days so well he would have been able to ignore the date. Maybe if he hadn’t been so great at counting he could have been better at something else, anything else, something normal.
She had tried, hadn’t she? 
So Remus should have been thankful, grateful, happy at least about that, right? It was his fault that he hadn’t been able to figure out that his visions were telling the future until a year later, until the doctors told him it was all in his head, until his own mother had decided he was making it up. She had listened to him those first few times, listened and reassured him, and held him close when he couldn’t breathe from the crippling fear that Roman was going to die. She had weathered each of eight-year-old Remus’s breakdowns with the patience of a saint.
And he still hadn’t been able to be that perfect son for her.
“Take your meds, Remus,” She had still told him when he was sixteen and had stopped crying when he watched her cross the parking lot without looking. “Take your meds and you’ll get better.” She had said even though that wasn’t what the meds did for people who actually took them. The meds hadn’t been the glue to piece him-- or anyone-- back together. They just reminded people of how their pieces fit without scratching and breaking and shattering even more.
And Remus hadn’t even needed them back then, because his problem hadn’t been like anyone else's. 
It hadn’t been delusions and hallucinations in his head. It hadn’t been him going crazy, it hadn’t been him losing himself. 
She had tried though. To be a good mother. To love him and all his….quirks.
“I don’t need you!” Roman had said. Very loudly, very openly, very angrily. And Remus thinks about that day a lot, often, all the goddamn time. Because they had been arguing all the way up the stairs, had been fighting verbally and their mother, their mom, Mom, had been just below them in the kitchen making dinner-- or maybe it had been a dessert, baking? Or just messing around in the kitchen. She had been there.
And they had gotten in trouble for arguing much quieter before.
Remus thinks about that day. He thinks about the vision of Roman dying by his own hand, of the blood and the gore and then fluttering pulse and the concept of a soul leaving the body. He thinks about how his parents would have come running the moment they heard Roman scream in pain.
He thinks. 
Maybe he thinks too much. 
And maybe one day he’d get the courage to ask himself the big looming question: Had she loved him? Or had she loved the concept of him?
Today wasn’t, hasn’t been, isn’t that day.
It’s nine thirty, here, at this rest stop somewhere in Oregon, where Remus is clawing his fingers on his thighs and letting his unevenly chewed nails catch on the holes in his fishnets. Its nine thirty here on the day where Remus is twenty one and four months old and staring at a payphone like it was about to ring all by itself. Its nine thirty one and Remus is thinking too much, too loudly, not enough.
It must be around five thirty for her. Right in the middle of dinner. Or after. Maybe she’s doing the dishes under scalding water that boils her hands right off. Maybe the dinner was poisoned and she’s clawing at her throat right now. Maybe she went out for the evening and got hit by a car when crossing the street.
Remus knows he could check. He doesn’t.
Because his skin is already itching and his breath is too hot and he wants to cry but he’s too old to be crying over things like this, just like his mom has said a thousand times over. 
He wonders if she would believe him if he told her how many times she had cried over Roman, how many times she had frozen at the sight of her precious baby boy going still and silent, how many times she fell to the ground and clutched at his body screaming her sobs like there was a chance any god out there would hear her anguish and give her son back. 
Like she had only one to love and cherish.
She had tried.
Remus wants to laugh so badly it hurts. The urge itself rips through his body, shredding his organs with a razorblade and filling his lungs with fluids followed and squirming its way up his throat inch by inch with a determination Remus hasn’t seen in himself since that gas station four years ago where he saw himself jump in front of an eighteen wheeler and felt his insides go splat! for the first time.
Remus wants to laugh, because she had tried, and it hadn’t been enough and Remus still---
He still---
Remus pulls the keys out of the ignition and throws them in the cupholder next to the sleeping Dee. He exchanges it for his wallet, which had seen far better days and been handled far nicer, but that’s beside the point. His driver’s license is overdue but nothing short of a nuclear bomb will get him back to the state he had once lived in-- he skips over it and the various rechargeable cards he had picked up over the years (Starbucks, Seven-Eleven, a Techron Advantage Card he got for fun and never actually used because Dee always paid for gas) and goes straight for the cash.
They’re all large bills. He takes a fifty.
Dee murmurs softly as he unbuckles his seat belt and flies into a wide blown panic when Remus opens the door. Quicker than Remus thought was possible for a guy to move, he springs over the dividing console and grabs Remus’s arm with-- OW FUCK DEE -- claws.
Remus yanks back on instinct, throwing himself against the already open door and tumbles into the empty parking spot next to them. His arm howls with pain, with an agony, with a cacophony that drowns out all his other thoughts for the moment. 
The blood is red. 
Remus is twenty one and four months old and his body wracks with such a vehement hatred for the color it makes the rest of his blood, the blood in his veins, the blood in his body, his blood boil. Its red, and he hates red, has hated red, will forever hate red.
Because red was the color of Roman’s favorite jacket when they were eight, the color of Roman’s shoes that he left out on the stairs too many times, the color of Roman’s blood too.
Red had been the color staining the bumper of a silver sedan, the color of a broken snow globe hitting the carpet, the color of Remus’s insides on the freeway, and the underside of an eighteen wheeler, and the bottom of the motel bathroom tub. 
“Remus!” Dee yells from inside the car, morphing, changing, panicking in a way that is not like him at all. He clambers into the driver's seat looking too pale for a guy whose skin tone could be any color he wanted it to be. “I’m sor-- I didn’t know we ha--- Oh my god I’m sorry!” 
He grabs all the napkins they have squirreled away in the crevices of the car, then the half empty tissue pack from the last time Remus had decided to check to see if the line in McDonalds was going to be long, then a scarf Dee had bought before he remembered that it was warm enough to cook eggs on the sidewalk in most of the places they went to. He spills out of the car even less gracefully than Remus had, bubbling up apologies like his mouth was a fountain. There’s an emotion wafting off him, something that taints the air and makes the hair on Remus’s neck stand on edge.
“It’s okay,” Remus whispers.
“You’re not okay!” Dee frantically responds, turning a stripe of his hair blonde and completely missing the part where Remus did not say he himself was okay.
Dee’s fingers feel like bugbites up and down his arm, like cigarette ends being jammed into his flesh, like he was the cake and Dee was placing enough candles in him to make up for every birthday his mother had missed celebrating.
“Its okay,” Remus says, tugging his arm away before Dee can turn him into a house fire that burns down the whole block.
Remus stands up. “I need to make a phone call.”
Remus doesn’t need to make a phone call. He probably shouldn’t make a phone call. 
“Remus!” Dee says standing up too. He’s taller this week, today, now, than he’s been before. He’s got an inch on Remus, and he uses that inch to look down at him and breathe like every inhale might be his last. There’s blood on his hands from trying to mop up where Dee had clawed him. Remus can feel the warmth of his blood trailing down his fingers even now. 
“What the hell is up with you right now!” He demands in a way that makes Remus’s stomach churn, that makes his knees weak and his throat feel all lumpy in all the wrong places. 
He should be mad. Dee should be furious at him for ignoring him all day, for driving them through a handful of states, for not pausing for bathroom breaks or any type of food, for not waking him when he stopped at the rest stop. He should be so angry he can’t see straight, so enraged that he stood up and grabbed the keys and drive the fuck away from here. He should be mad.
So why does he sound so scared? 
“Is this about the Mall?” Dee asks, “I can do better, Remus, please! I’m sorry!”
He’s babbling like a brook, about things in the mall that Remus barely remembered because it was a day and a half ago and three, four, five states gone. He’s talking about the Mall the same way that eight-year-old Roman had been apologizing for name calling, while Remus was three sheets in the wind during a tornado on his own thoughts.
“No,” Remus says, which is about as effective as shoving his finger in a hole in a dam.
The parking lot lights make Dee look like he’s standing in a spotlight on stage. Remus hates the sight, hates the feeling that they’re putting on a production for someone else's entertainment, hates that he should know his lines by now and because he doesn’t he's ruining everything around him.
Dee moves like a clockwork mannequin with rusted gears. Remus thinks he can hear each individual gear screech as his back straightens and his weight shifts back and Dee looks more like Roman than he’d ever know.
“N--n--” Dee repeats, “No?”
As if he didn’t know what the word meant.
“Like….no I can’t do better?”
-- “Like, No Get Back in the Fucking Car, Dee!” Remus explodes.---
--“Like No, Leave me alone for five seconds!” Remus erupts.---
--”Like No, Its not your fault I’m a fucking mess!” Remus chokes.---
--- “Like No, Its not your fault. I’m sorry. Please don’t leave me.”--
-- “Like No, I’m making bad decisions and I’m sorry and I don’t know what to do and I know that you don’t really love me the way you think you do because no one ever loves me that way. Like No, this is a future that I’m not going to choose but I wish I had because keeping this all in my chest hurts like a little bitch, Dee. It hurts so bad. Like no. I’m sorry. I’m so sorry. I’m going to have such a nose bleed from this one, and because you’re you, you’ll know that I’ve been bullshitting my way through this for a good while. My power’s broken, Dee. Don’t you see? And once I tell you what's going to be left for you to stay?.”---
“Like No,” Remus says, defeated. “I don’t even remember what happened at the Mall.”
Dee stares at him with stolen sapphire eyes, with an emotion he can’t place, with wordless questions Remus doesn’t want to answer.
He doesn’t know what time it is.
A drip of his blood leaks down his lip and lands on the asphalt at his feet. That’s okay.
He breathes in the dry air, feeling it scratch down his throat and butcher his lungs with each inhale. “I...need to make this phone call.”
“Why?” Dee pleads, and Remus thinks that if even Dee can tell it will end badly, he should know better than to go through with it. 
But Remus has been thinking too much lately, about too many things. He’s been trapped up in his own head, and the last people he tried to let help him gave up on him.
And he still can’t give up on them.
“It’s her birthday,” Remus says with a smile that borders on deranged, “And she tried, you know?”
He doesn’t know. Remus can tell by the look on Dee’s face. But that’s okay. They made a pact after all, after that first night, that they wouldn’t get personal, that discussions of feelings were off the table. And Dee had said in a future that hadn’t happened that Remus was an investment that will pay out one day. It doesn’t matter that he doesn’t know.
“Remus,” Dee says, controlling the stage like he was born to do it. “What will she say?”
Remus shrugs and turns away because he’s never been able to make it past intermission of any production he’s watched. The fifty in his hand has splatterings of blood, his arm aches and whines as he uses it to smear away the waterfall from his nose. At least a couple of the sidewalk lights are broken so he doesn’t scare every single normal person chilling at the rest stop as he walks up.
Remus is twenty one and four months, but that doesn’t mean he doesn’t waste forty seven dollars on snacks from a vending machine just to get the change in quarters to call cross country. He’s not hungry but he peels open a Cliff bar and takes a bite anyway. The rest of the food he leaves on the patio floor around the vending machine for whatever comes by, be it the kids he can hear yelling or the raccoons watching from the tree line.
He glances back at the car, their car, Dee’s car. Just to make sure its still there. That Dee didn’t drive off without him.
Dee hadn’t, didn’t, doesn’t. He’s sitting in the driver's seat with the door wide open, half in half out, and it looks like he was fiddling with the radio again.
Remus tosses the other half of the bar into the trashcan and walks the last three steps to the payphones. 
She had tried. Remus puts the phone to his ear and tries to remember how to breathe. 
The buttons are stiff. Remus’s knuckle leaves behind traces of his blood as he dials. The back of his throat tastes like his inside of his stomach. There’s a gritty feeling along his teeth and the bottom of his mouth from the Cliff Bar. He’s knees tremble to the sound of the ringing, leaving him swaying in the too-long silences, in the bated breaths, in the calm before the hurricane. 
“Hi! It's the Regis Family! We’re not available right now, but if you leave your name and number, we’ll get back to you!” 
Remus’s mouth tastes like blood. He swallows it down, breathes through the rest of the message, the beep and another moment where his chest just aches with a billion words he doesn’t know how to say.
“H….hey.” His voice is raspy. Why is his voice so raspy? He clears his throat. “I, uh...I was calling to say, Happy Birthday. Hope it was a good one. That’s all. B--”
Remus’s jaw clicks shut at the noise, the words, the voice. Because even four years later Remus knows it like the back of his hand, can still imagine it screaming his name in the store, of it laughing as she brushed through his curls, of it whispering softly that everything is fine, everything is okay, I’m right here, Remus.
“Ha, Hi! Sorry about that, you caught us just as we were getting back to the house! Oh, this is embarrassing… Who is this? Our caller ID isn’t working…”
She trails off.
Remus thinks he’s forgotten how to breathe.
She sounds out of breath, flushed and happy and excited in a way that he doesn’t remember her ever being before. His vision tunnels through memories, through scenes in his head where she’s smiled and laughed and giggled the way she’s doing right now. He’s coming up blank.
He grabs the wall to keep himself steady.
“I’m here,” Remus croaks.
She’s different now. So is he. Everything is different and the world seems to stop at that mind blowing statement.
“.....I’m sorry,” She says, “I really need to know who this is, now.”
Remus should hang up. 
Remus needs to hang up. 
He laughs, like he’s on death row, like the barrel of a gun in on his temple, like his foot just left the ledge.
“What?” He asks, “Can’t a mother recognize the sound of her own son's voice?”
There’s a breath. A moment. A second. Remus feels it. Like it's tangible, palpable, real. Like all the clocks in the world decided to stop. Like a tick without a tock. Like the past and the present and the future didn’t exist at all. There’s a breath, and Remus thinks that she had tried once, maybe she could try again. 
They both could try again.
“Oh my god. Is that...Baby, is that really you? I’m so sorry for what I said. You were right.” 
“You’re always right. And I’m sorry about-- about everything. Please let me make it up to you?” His mother says and Remus gets a sinking feeling in his chest.
“Or at least talk about it? Can we do that?”  His mother says and Remus should have hung up.
“Can you come back home, Roman?” His mother says and Remus sees red.
Because, of course, she thought he was Roman. Of course. 
Red is the color of Roman. The color of his jacket and his shoes and the ball Remus should have thrown into the road when they were eight. The color of a past Remus can’t get rid of because every time he does anything he can only hear Roman’s voice in his head or picture his mom with her red lipstick telling him to take his pills and stop being so abnormal. It’s the color of a future that he can’t reach because every time he gets a little bit of hope he’s reminded that he’s unnecessary and forgettable. 
Red is the color of Remus’s blood that looks just like his twin’s but somehow has always been valued less to their mother.
He squeezes the handle of the phone so hard his fingers go numb from the pain, and the scarf around his wrist turns scarlet. His body trembles and bubbles and boils like its housing a volcano ready to erupt, or a thousand termites are trying to chew their way out of him, or every atom in his body is trying to shake themselves apart.
Remus is twenty one and four months old and he hangs up the phone so hard that it pops right back out of the slot and swings to the ground by its cord.
He doesn’t fix it. In fact he doesn’t even see it because he’s too busy seeing red. Too busy seeing Roman’s head collide with the bumper of a silver sedan, too busy seeing Roman’s neck break when he falls off the swingset wrong, too busy seeing Roman’s body on the ground of his carpet surrounded by the shattered remains of a snowglobe, too busy seeing all the things he should have done or let happen or helped happen.
Too busy knowing that hindsight is 2020 and Remus’s insides suddenly want to be outsides and his arm hurts and he wants to-- 
He wants to--
--“REMUS!” Dee shrieks from across the parking lot, sprinting towards him because he forgot that he can shapeshift into something faster. There’s a terror in his eyes, a fear, a horror in his expression that's like being stuck under a collapsed building and knowing that no one is gonna come. “REMUS! SOMEONE HELP!”---
--“REMUS!” Dee shrieks from across the parking lot, sprinting towards him because he forgot that he can shapeshift into something faster. There’s a terror in his eyes, a fear, a horror in his expression that's like being stuck under a collapsed building and knowing that no one is gonna come. “REMUS! SOMEONE HELP!”
But no one is close enough and Remus’s knots are a practiced stubborn thing that has his body convulsing before Dee remembers he can make claws and cut the scarf off.---
--“REMUS!” Dee shrieks from across the parking lot, sprinting towards him because he forgot that he can shapeshift into something faster. There’s a terror in his eyes, a fear, a horror in his expression that's like being stuck under a collapsed building and knowing that no one is gonna come. “REMUS! SOMEONE HELP!”
But no one is close enough and Remus’s knots are a practiced stubborn thing that has his body convulsing before Dee remembers he can make claws and cut the scarf off.
But by then Remus is already dead.---
But no that’s not right. 
He doesn’t want to die. 
His mouth tastes like metal, and he’s so sick of the taste of metal, of the smell of blood, of the sight of red on his clothes and on him. He’s so sick of being the weird twin, of being the one everyone wants to forget, of being gifted with a power that's so shitty it his own body rejects it. He’s so, so sick.
And tired.
And angry. 
That he spent all day trying to figure out what to say to his mother and she doesn’t even remember him. That his family pushed him away and now he watches himself jump off buildings or into traffic or off tables at a rest stop. That his skin feels too small and his mind too big and that there is absolutely nothing wrong with him but everyone still treated him like there was.
“Pardon me,” A voice says to his left. “Hello? Sir? You seem to be bleeding...”
It belongs to a guy with glasses, big thick blocky glasses that match every other part of him: his sharp jawline, his stiff spine, his set shoulders. It belongs to a guy with hair so dark it might as well have been a black hole, with eyes swirling with so many blues they looked like nebulas, with skin so pale it might as well have been the surface of the moon. It belongs to a guy that reaches out oh so carefully and touches Remus’s shoulder to check that he’s alright and---
-- “A stick in the mud?” Logan suggests sourly as they walk. The rain speckles his glasses and plasters his hair to his head.
“I was gonna say prude, but that works too,” His younger brother shrugs, sipping loudly from his drink. “Girl, you really just need to loosen up. You’re always so stressed!”
“I do not need to loosen up,” Logan counters, “In fact, if anything, I need to tighten up my interactions with people more. You saw what happened to the baristas at the Starbucks.”
“Yeah, and it was Awesome!” His brother motions to the drink in his hand, “Free drinks!”
“Will it still be awesome when they get fired and lose their source of income because they unwittingly gave away merchandise to customers?” Logan asks. He tugs his jackets around him tighter, hunching his shoulders and wishing that between the two of them they had thought to bring at least one umbrella.
His brother rolls his eyes because the rain doesn’t bother him anymore than the slight chill or the cars passing dangerously close to their sidewalk. “Honey,” He says, “Its two free drinks. It’s not gonna kill the infrastructure.”
Logan grunts, dismissing the rest of the argument as he was prone to do more often these days. “Remind me again why we’re here.”
“That prince dude is supposed to be around here today!”
“You mean, Princeps,” Logan corrects. “Assumedly named after the swordsmen from Roman armies pre-Marian reforms. Which does not make any sense considering that he does not carry a sword and his perceived power does not--”
“I wanna get his autograph!”
Logan squints back at his brother. “You want the autograph of a man who is running around the country in tights? You don’t even have anything for him to sign.”
His brother shakes his mostly empty drink and points to the spot right below where the barista had scratched out his own name, not that Logan can see it, or anything. “Duh.”
Logan shakes his head, as his brother prattles on about Princeps face, his biceps, his thighs. And as much as Logan enjoys listening to his brother talk about things that interest him, he wishes that it was something other than men that thought “superhero” was a stable dayjob. He sighs and removes his glasses and to clean them as best as he can with the raindrops being the nice of dimes.z
 He hates the rain, hates that he couldn’t ever see more than three feet when it so much as sprinkled, hates that his brother has no such problems at all and can continue walking without a care in the world.
“LOGAN!” His brother yells.
And Logan has just enough time to feel his stomach jump straight to his throat, before he walks blindly into an open manhole. His forehead slams on the outer rim so hard he sees actual stars in the corners of his blurry vision. And he fumbles and  flails and falls and...
And the empty air catches him, covets him, carries him off. Because he’s dead as soon as his head hits the concrete floor ten feet below---
Remus inhales like he’s been drowning for the past four years, and hasn’t been able to find the surface. He stumbles back from the stranger who had approached him, from the man who has a younger brother, who doesn’t like superheroes, who’s name is Logan. He stumbles back and feels the whole Earth roll under his feet, turning the solid ground to an uneven puddy.
Logan jerks back as well, be it shock or surprise or something in between and equally bad. He looks at Remus, the way that the first dealer from the Basilisk Casino had, the way that the new freshmen at their high school had when the older kids told them to steer clear of the guy who looked just like the theater star, the way that Roman had when he had first seen the orange bottle of pills that were supposed to make Remus not cry all the time.  
“My apologies, you seemed to be in distre--” Logan starts.
“Don’t touch me,” Remus says quicker, louder, angrier. Because Logan doesn’t know that he’s going to die some day in the future, that its going to be a stupid sudden death, that his brother that he actually loves and whom loves him back is going to witness it. Because Remus doesn’t know why he knows either.
His skin blisters and bubbles and itches in a way that tells him he needs to take it off. His arm burns from the scratches, his blood is making his hand and wrist all sticky and his head feels a bit like cotton. His mouth tastes like Starbucks Hot chocolate and ash. 
“Don’t touch me,” Remus says again, because he feels radioactive and can smell petrichor in the air and everything about it is wrong. If he says anything else he thinks he might throw up or cry or both and he doesn’t think anything other than more blood can come up.
Remus turns and runs. 
“Remus?” Dee asks, when Remus throws himself into the passenger seat the way he should have that morning.
Remus shakes his head. And keeps shaking it because if he stops his thoughts will catch up and then they’ll really be in trouble.
“Drive,” He manages between his inconsolable gulps for air.
“Where?” Dee asks.
“Don’t care.”
He doesn’t. He just needs to be somewhere other than here.
Remus is twenty one and four months and he’s no stranger to travelling without a destination. Dee buckles his seat belt and pulls out of the parking spot without another word. Remus brings his knees to his head and counts, and counts, and counts. If he closes his eyes he thinks that he might see the silhouette of Logan standing next to the payphones staring at his hand still so he doesn’t close his eyes.
“That’s just what I’m saying, John.” The radio says, “All these new people with what can only be classified as “superpowers” and what is the Police doing about this? Nothing!” 
“Hotel,” Dee says, “We can order some food there and actually look at those marks on your arm.”
“Whatever,” Remus says.
“Well what do you expect the Police to do?” The radio says, “Their answer to everything is “shoot it.” I don’t know about you, but I don’t want the police shooting at a kid who just so happened to be able to make lightning. You heard about that incident in the Idahoan Mall didn't you? Times are changing. It's up to the people to police themselves now.”
Dee sticks his tongue out ever so slightly, like a snake smelling the air.
“You’re encouraging the actions of people like that dragon guy from that incident? The child from that event is in the hospital right now. 
“So is the man that had been robbing the store. Which is better than him being the morgue. I’m not saying that I think that putting children in the hospital is a good idea! I’m saying that only protecting the lives of “good” people is telling everyone to become judge, jury, and executioner. The Idaho Mall Incident could have been handled better-- in fact I think if the new guy, the one around the east wearing the white? You know the one I’m talking about, Karen.”
“Yeah, yeah, the Prince? I think he called himself Prince.” 
“Yes. If the Prince had been the one who had handled the Idaho Mall, it could have been handled completely peacefully, without either parties having ended up in the hospital.”
Dee grips the steering wheel, tightly.
Remus reaches out and turns the radio off.
[Part 5]
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ineloqueent · a year ago
Starstruck: Part 16
Brian May x Fem!Reader
This is Part 16 of a multi-part fic. Click the links below to read the Masterpost, the previous part, or the next part of the fic :)
Masterpost / Part 15 / Part 17
Summary: When studying at Imperial College in the 1970s, your path is crossed by a beautiful boy as much in love with the stars as you.  
Warnings: swearing, drinking, sentiments of worthlessness
Historical Inaccuracies:
no idea what happened on the first night of tour; yay fictionalisation!
Word Count: 4.1k
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⁺˚*·༓☾ ☽༓・*˚⁺
You’d never seen anything like it.
People had gone as far as to camp out in front the venue the night before, sharing blankets and passing around coffee and various types of alcohol to keep warm, cheering as the tour bus had pulled into the carpark, running to shake hands with the roadies as they began to unload equipment.
Then there’d been the next wave of show-goers, the second-most dedicated bunch. They’d arrived hours and hours before the gig, had clamoured for a spot in line closest to the front of the door.
And, from backstage, you could hear people laughing and shouting happily as they entered the theatre, overjoyed even just to be there, in a place where Queen would perform.
The enthusiasm was contagious, and it washed over you in waves, every cry as friends reunited to see their favourite band play live, every hiss of excitement when the stage curtains rustled or a roadie happened to pass through the main room of the theatre. Everywhere you looked, people were dressed in t-shirts with Queen’s logo on it, t-shirts that looked like they’d been worn and loved since the beginning of time, and waved banners made with old sheets and acrylic paint. The dedication alone was flooring.
Freddie seemed to think so too.
“Can you hear them, out there?” he was saying.
The crowd was chanting, and the poor supporting band had never stood a chance; the people were shouting for what they wanted, and the shouts rang out loud and clear— we want Queen! We want Queen! We want Queen!
“Yeah,” Roger nodded, a grin spreading across his face. He was already tapping his drumsticks, on the edge of a table, and alongside the rhythm, your heartbeat increased, the anticipation in the room building with each moment you lingered there.
“I wish Veronica were here,” Deacy sighed, and you turned to him in sympathy. Through everything, she was always the person on his mind, the person he wanted to share a moment with. You couldn’t imagine a purer form of love.
Roger said, “For god’s sake, John, it’s been barely a day,” but he too sounded sorry.
Brian wasn’t participating in the conversation, even as Freddie gushed on about the pre-show thrill, and as Roger resolved to take a Polaroid of Deacy each night before a concert, so that the latter could show Veronica and Robert how he’d continued to think of them while he was gone.
You approached Brian, who was doing his make-up in the mirror Freddie had recently vacated, drawing on black eyeliner with a heavy hand. He glanced over his shoulder as your neared, and his lips curved upward, but his expression was tight.
“You okay?” you asked, touching his shoulder lightly.
He straightened up from where he’d leaned to reach the mirror, and as you dropped your hand, you noticed the tremble in his.
“Hey,” you frowned, taking the eyeliner from him and replacing it on the counter. “Are you— are you nervous?”
Brian bit his lip and glanced away in something like shame.
He looked so vulnerable in that moment, eyes downcast and shoulders hunched, curls floating down to hide his eyes.
“Ridiculous, isn’t it?” he murmured, punctuating the remark with laughter that was probably meant to be light but did not come off that way at all.
You took his hand. “No, it’s not.”
Without looking at you, he exhaled slowly. Then, to your vehement surprise, he pulled on your hand and brought you close to him, gathering you up in his arms and clutching you to his chest.
You let out a soft oh, wrapping your arms around his slim torso as he drew a quivering breath. You could hear his heartbeat, fast and heavy, and you tightened your hold around him.
“It’s okay,” you smoothed your hands over his back, trying to steady his breathing. “You’ll be brilliant.”
You felt him nod.
“But why are you nervous now? You’ve done this hundreds of times.”
Brian sighed. “I’m always nervous,” he said.
“And what do you normally do about it?”
“Nothing. Shove it down. Try not to think about it.”
“Excellent coping mechanism,” you muttered. “Well, I’ll be here to give you your daily hug.”
Brian laughed, mirth returning to the sound.
“Thank you,” he said. He gave you another squeeze before letting go.
“Anytime,” you responded, dropping your arms to your sides.
But he shook his head. “Really, love. Thank you.”
You smiled, and his eyes glowed with warmth.
“Brian?” said Roger, and Brian spun toward his bandmates.
“It’s time,” Freddie breathed, and beyond the dressing room, beyond the hallways and the empty rooms and the walls plastered with signatures of performers past, the audience breathed with him.
They were him. He was them. Freddie Mercury breathed life, and life honoured him in its existence.
A flurry of smiles were exchanged, and soon you were following four of the most brilliant people you’d ever met toward the stage where thousands of other lucky souls would delight in their talent.
A group formed quickly, Freddie with Roger at one shoulder and Mary at the other, Heather close behind, followed by Crystal and Deacy and Roadie John, and Peter Hince and you with Brian, Ian bringing up the rear.
Your thoughts raced, but everything around you moved as though soaked in treacle, as though delayed, your mind compensating for the adrenaline in your veins by slowing everything down.
Then Freddie was being handed his sheared-off microphone stand, and Roger was tousling his hair in a last-minute fix, and Deacy was slinging on his bass while Brian lifted his guitar.
It was all so surreal, the chatter and laughter amongst the group, the occasional eyebrow raise or wink exchanged in anticipation of what was about to begin, the hush that fell over the crowd before Queen were announced and finally, finally, took the stage, cheers from the audience rattling the walls of the theatre, the ground, as though it all was no more than rice paper.
“Go House Lights.”
You clasped your hands to your chest, unable to keep the smile from your face as the lights went up and Queen were illuminated in all their shiny satin splendour, as the first chord rang from Brian’s guitar, and Roger’s drumsticks met with the drums in an earthquake of noise, and Deacy strummed his bass until the floors hummed with the sound, and Freddie launched into song.
Heather leaned against your shoulder, and when you looked over at her, she extended her hand to you. Mary held Heather’s other hand, smiling at the view of the stage with tears in her eyes. She nodded to you in silent solidarity, and you took Heather’s outstretched hand.
Such a feeling of belonging washed over you, and the intensity of the sensation brought tears to your eyes as well.
You didn’t want to run. You wanted to be where you were.
You’d never felt that before.
Not before now.
⁺˚*·༓☾ ☽༓・*˚⁺
The first gig had been electric.
Queen had opened and closed to a rager of an audience, and had held them enraptured, wound around their pinkies throughout, a spell cast over everyone within the room. You’d felt it too— when they harmonised, when Roger’s drumming ran with John’s bass and the sound of it replaced your thoughts, when Freddie rushed past you for a costume change, when Brian leaned into one of his guitar solos.
The ‘Son & Daughter’ solo had sent shivers down your spine.
You’d felt like you were back in the pub on that first night, watching Brian’s eyes catch on yours. Indeed, he seemed to remember it too. He’d looked to you in the wings, smiled upon singing the very same line he’d sung to you all those months ago. Shivers.
Now, a few hours later, Freddie was keeping the energy going with his first-night-of-tour party.
And you were wearing Zandra’s top, the one she’d made for you.
You’d all but forgotten about the top over the summer, despite having brought it with you after Zandra had dropped it off at your house.
But you’d seen the garment as soon as you’d unpacked back on Camden High Street, and in its glittering grandeur, it was begging to be worn. So you’d packed it again, this time to take with you on tour.
And when on this night you’d finally donned the sparkly top, you’d felt invincible.
The party was an extravagant event. Queen hadn’t even released the album yet and they were already spending fantastical amounts of money. But given that Deacy would be attending Freddie’s party of his own free will, you supposed that the event must have been cleared by budgeting. Still, you didn’t want to know how much Freddie had spent on decorations, his own outfit, the food.
The party was at the hotel where you all were staying, but for tonight’s occasion, Freddie had also booked the dance hall which lay on the seventh floor, and several surrounding suites— “In case people get frisky, darling.”
You were met at the door of the dance hall by none other than Freddie himself, who was personally greeting and directing people as he oversaw the admittance of the guestlist.
When he saw you he opened his arms widely, and you hugged him.
“Hello Freddie,” you said.
He kissed the top of your head enthusiastically. “Y/N, I’m so happy you’re here!” It was apparent he’d already had a couple of drinks. Tipsy, not yet drunk. Still coherent, at least. “And that top is stunning!” he picked at the sleeve of your sparkly black blouse. “One of Zandra’s?”
“Yeah, she actually made it for me,” you responded with an amused smile, remembering Zandra’s spontaneous visit to your place back in June.
Freddie raised his eyebrows. “My goodness, she must have liked you a lot. Go on inside,” he patted your shoulder.“I’ll join you all in a few minutes.”
“Okay. See you in a bit.” You smiled, but the expression was uneasy, because you’d just remembered how it was you felt about parties. All that mingling with people you barely knew, and hovering awkwardly by the bar because you were avoiding people you’d spoken to earlier and didn’t want to speak to again.
“Oh and, darling!” Freddie called, just as you were going.
His lips curled into a smile, and his eyes looked villainous in their winged eyeliner.
“Brian’s looking for you,” he winked.
A shiver ran through you.
“Oh— okay,” you murmured, feeling your cheeks begin to burn.
The flush spread through your body as you entered the dimly lit room, as anticipation and nervousness shook your hands where they hung by your sides.
Would you be able to spot anyone you knew? Quickly? You didn’t much want to repeat the experiences of your teenage years.
Would Brian be there, waiting? And if he was, what would he think of what you were wearing? Your blouse was loose and low-cut, your trousers were silky and tight. The thought of his eyes running over you tickled goosebumps into your skin.
The music in the hall was already loud, and you wondered how many complaints Freddie would receive from the other hotel guests before the night was through.
Walking deeper into the hall, you remembered why the music was so loud.
The hall had a record player in a corner and boasted impressively sized speakers, courtesy of Deacy, who had, in a conversation with Freddie that you’d only heard bits and pieces of, insisted music was so much a part of creating an atmosphere. He’d also insisted on overseeing the rig himself, with Queen’s own sound crew running the whole thing.
The low lighting was purple, blue, and black in tone, and a disco ball strung from the ceiling reflected the colours around the room. Streamers and balloons and at least a hundred people dancing and mingling completed the look of the hall and energised the place, similar to the feeling evoked by the Speak at Oxford Circus upon initial entry.
Coincidentally, the first party-goer you recognised was Deacy, and when he saw you, he grinned and made his way over to you, a colourful cocktail in hand.
Relief left you in a sigh.
“Hello Y/N!”
“Hi, Deacy!” You wrapped John in a hug, though you’d seen him just hours ago. His presence was comforting in the sea of strangers that surrounded you.
“So,” Deacy gestured to your sparkly blouse, “dressed to impress, are we?”
“Not at all,” you shouted over the disco blaring from the speaker rig.
“Not even a certain Brian May?”
Just then, someone called your name, and you whirled, heart thudding. But where you had expected to find Brian, you instead spotted Roger, waving at you cheerily.
You waved back, then said to Deacy with a slight laugh, “No. Don’t think he’d want me to.”
John raised his eyebrows. “What makes you say that?”
“Deacy,” you implored, “he called me his best friend.”
“Y/N! How many times—” Deacy gave a heavy sigh. “That’s what I said to my girlfriend before I married her.”
You pursed your lips. “I think you two are the exception, not the rule.”
John rolled his eyes. “Okay, okay, whatever, but he already can’t take his eyes off of you, so if you made a move, I daresay he wouldn’t mind.”
“What—” you started, but Deacy had disappeared into the crowd.
“Y/N,” said a familiar voice, and you turned toward the sound.
Wide-eyed, soft-lipped. Even the dim lighting could not shroud his beauty in shadow.
“You look…” he shook his head slowly. “Like the night sky.”
And here he was complimenting you.
“Is that a good thing?” you asked, knowing full well what his answer would be, but wanting to hear him say it.
His gaze ran all over you, beginning where your toes peeked out of your high heels, skimming up your legs and over your torso and finally fixing upon your eyes. The look felt suddenly more intimate to you than any touch had ever been.
“You look beautiful,” he murmured. He held his hand out to you. “Dance with me?”
You had no qualms about taking his hand.
Until of course Led Zeppelin’s ‘Whole Lotta Love’ ended and someone replaced the record, setting the needle to the third track.
You knew that it was the third track, because Heather had once made you memorise the tracklist of this record.
Heather. How you missed Heather. You barely saw her anymore.
Heather had once been your closest friend, and she’d very much shaped the person you were today.
When you’d first become friends, she had taken you shopping and taught you how to dress to accentuate what you wanted to accentuate, how to dress to make you feel like fashion was your friend, and not your enemy, as it had often been, in terms of poor self-image. And in terms of music, she had introduced you to so many artists, most notably Mott the Hoople.
A Mott the Hoople record was now on the deck, and that was why, when across the room the needle was placed down on the new record, you were washed away in a wave of nostalgia.
But you weren’t the only one.
Brian’s lips were gently agape, and eyes were soft with emotion, so much sadness in his eyes that you wondered if he’d ever really been happy, all those times he’d smiled.
He still held out his hand, but now he did so almost shyly. The askance was still there, though, and he was asking you to dance with him.
Slowly, you took his hand, and he drew you close, one palm against the small of your back, his other hand remaining in yours.
He exhaled in a tense manner as you laid your head against his chest.
Then he began to talk.
“Last year, we were abroad, opening for Mott the Hoople every night on their tour.”
You’d never thought about the fact that the band you were friends with had worked with the band you’d so revered in your teenage years. It was a riveting, if slightly bizarre, thought. But you kept this musing to yourself; Brian rarely talked unprompted in this way, and you wanted to hear what he had to say.
“They played this song every night,” he said as he swayed with you, “and it was a right rager. Everyone loved it, sang it like it had been written for them, like it belonged to them. And in a way, it did. It wasn’t written for them, but it became theirs, the disaffected youth, the lost, the ones who couldn’t be themselves for the existence of others, the hopeless dreamers.”
You looked up at him, to see how his words had changed the expression on his face.
His gaze was unfixed, staring past you with sleepy eyes in a face of grim sentimentality.
“I stood backstage, in my dark makeup and sweeping sleeves, with Freddie smoking beside me, Roger jumping up and down and twirling his drumsticks, Deacy tuning his unplugged bass up and down. And I thought to myself,” he gave a short laugh, “what the hell am I doing here? All these people... they’re behaving like they belong on stage, like we belong on stage, like I’m not some awkward astrophysics student still unsure of his life choices, walking around in garb that makes David Bowie’s fashion look about as flamboyant as plaid pyjamas.”
You smiled a little at this last remark, given its intention of humour, but everything Brian was saying carried with it such a weight that sadness remained your prevailing emotion.
“Even though I loved performing, there were times when I felt I was not me, not in my body, only watching all these things happen, from very far away.” He exhaled slowly, and the sound was so pitiful that you wanted to draw him even closer. “I was tall and shy and awkward, and you know, nothing’s changed.”
“It was only a year ago,” you said gently. But Brian shook his head.
“So much can change in the course of a year,” he murmured, and you thought his palm pressed more warmly against your back. He met your eyes. “But I haven’t changed. I haven’t changed at all.”
“I would never want you to change.”
He echoed that sad smile you’d smiled earlier. He looked down, and a curl fell over his face. Your heart ached at the sight of him. You contemplated reaching up and winding the curl around your forefinger, to bring him nearer to you, to let him know that you meant what you had said.
Then his smile disappeared entirely.
“What if my dad’s right, Y/N?” his voice was plaintive. “What if I’ve made the wrong decision, pulling out of uni? What if Queen go nowhere? What if we fade away, or fall apart? What if I’m only losing time?”
You opened your mouth to speak, but he wasn’t finished.
“What if I’m not good enough?”
You stopped dancing, letting go of him only to reach up and touch his cheek.
“Brian, look at me.”
He looked at you.
“Define wrong,” you said. “Would you call three, four albums, with chart-topping numbers nowhere? Would you call travelling the world to play music for hundreds of thousands of people who adore you nowhere? Do you think hundreds of thousands of people will just let you fade away? Would you let the four of you fall apart? And would you ever give up the time you’ve spent with Fred and Rog and Deacy, with Zandra bloody Rhodes, through all this wonderful madness?”
You cupped his face, staring into his eyes and willing him, willing him, to believe you. “You’re good enough for all that, Brian. And whatever happens, you’ll always be good enough for me.”
He was speechless, wide-eyed and slack-jawed, motionless though his skin was rosy and his pulse was skipped madly beneath your fingers.
“You’re too good for me,” he whispered. “You always will be.”
He was no longer dancing, and nor were you, because your leg was pressed against his, and his eyes were warmer than sunlight, and you were holding his hand and felt his pulse thrum against your own, and his mouth hovered over yours.
You were so close to him that you could see the little freckle on his lower lip.
Your breath left you in a gasp, and then he was kissing you.
Heat spilled through your veins, dizzying you, and the world felt enchanted.
Brian’s hands were pressed to either side your face, and the gentleness with which he kissed almost hurt. All that you had longed for, held at a distance, brushed away for fear of unrequitedness, was here in this moment, and it was yours.
How long had you waited to call this yours? To feel deserving of something like this, someone like this. Still, he was wrong; he was the one who was too good for you. Yet you could not make yourself pull away from him.
You were melting beneath his touch, breathless, pressing closer to him though you were already in his arms, and you were starlight. Floating, ethereal. He made you feel ethereal.
His lips slipped from yours and you opened your eyes to find his gaze on you, his chest rising and falling quickly, and you felt your cheeks flush at his attentiveness.
With his dark curls tumbling about his face, Brian was looking a bit pink himself, much like his summer sunburn, except that his skin was now still lightly tanned from the summer, and this pink only touched his cheeks in a subtle way that enhanced his prettiness by a ridiculous amount.
And then he smiled.
It nearly knocked the air from your lungs again.
“Brian,” you breathed, laying your hand over the hand that still rested against your face.
He dipped his forehead and whispered the words across your lips. “Yes, love?”
You couldn’t help it. You ran a finger beneath his jaw, and he shivered.
This time, you kissed him.
His parted lips tasted of chocolate, his hair smelled of flowers, and it was all you could do to not collapse on the spot.
A little whimper escaped you, and you pulled back shyly.
You had suddenly remembered your surroundings, and blushed at the thought of anyone seeing how you’d swooned into Brian’s arms.
“People are staring,” you said.
Brian gave another little shake of his head. “No one’s looking at you,” he murmured, brushing a piece of your hair behind your ear. “Well, that’s not strictly true, because I can’t take my eyes off of you.”
You allowed yourself a smirk. “So I’ve been told.”
Brian looked amused. “Am I that obvious?”
“Not to me, at least.”
“Really?” he raised his eyebrows. “I’ll try to be more obvious in the future.”
Your insides tumbled at the mention of a supposed future.
But then someone gave a cry of alarm, and though Brian still held you tightly, your thoughts scattered like the people around you.
A glass had been shattered.
It’d been thrown. Hurled to the ground in a furious rage.
Somewhere, the music ground to a halt.
“How could you?!”
You recognised the shrill voice as Mary’s. It appeared that Brian did too, because his eyes widened.
“Mary, darling, let’s just—”
“No, Freddie, let us not anything. There is no us. You’ve made that very clear.”
Mary came into view as she ran past you in perilously high platforms, wiping away black tears on the sleeves of her white blouse.
“Mary, wait!”
Freddie hurried after her, and everyone stood gaping in his wake. But when he reached the door that Mary had disappeared beyond, his shoulders slumped, as though the fight had gone out of him. He made a turn down the adjacent hallway instead.
“Jesus Christ,” Brian murmured, eyes trailing after the spectacle that had just taken place. Then he let go of you and followed Freddie.
“Has anyone seen a broom?” someone said to the silence of the room.
You swayed where you stood, alone in the middle of it all, still trying to process the multitude of things that had happened in the past two minutes.
“Y/N!” Brian called to you from the door to the hallway Freddie had taken. “Find Mary, would you?”
You nodded absently, pressing your fingers to your lips where Brian’s soft mouth had pressed just moments before. The blood still rushed in your ears, your heart still hammered in your chest.
You opened the door to the stairwell and followed after Mary.
⁺˚*·༓☾ ☽༓・*˚⁺
A/N: i’m smiling smugly right now and you can’t stop me
taglist: @melting-obelisks​ @retropetalss​ @hgmercury39​  @topsecretdeacon @joemazzmatazz​ @perriwiinkle​ @brianmays-hair​ @im-an-adult-ish​ @ilikebigstucks​ @doing-albri​ @killer-queen-87​ @n0-self-c0ntro1​ @archaicmusings​ @cloudyyspace​ @annina-96​ @themarchoftherainbowqueen​ @annajolras​ 
Masterpost / Part 15 / Part 17
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Z for Kaoru/Yusuke with Bonus Shouichi/Makoto (Double Date)
Z is for double date
Makoto’s wanted to work directly with Ichijo Kaoru for years, and now that he’s getting to, what strikes him is just how tired the man seems. Not that it makes anything but sense--his work ethic is legendary, which mostly means that he never seems to relax. He’s always doing something. Makoto’s never heard him mention hobbies, vacations, no girlfriend or wife. Work, work, work.
Which is why, when Ichijo turns to him one day and says, “You couldn’t recommend a good restaurant around here, could you?” Makoto’s first response is to say, “Pardon?”
Once he’s gathered himself, which only takes a second or two, he does manage to continue with, “Right, ah, restaurants. Yes, I know a few, are you--who are you entertaining?”
“A friend of mine just came back from a long trip.” And--this perpetually harried man’s eyes soften, and he doesn’t quite smile, but he’s definitely thinking of smiling. “I thought we might get something to eat, I haven’t taken a real evening off in a while.”
Makoto can’t help smiling himself. “Well, what kind of food does your friend like?”
“Oh, he’ll eat just about anything. He loves to cook, actually, he makes an amazing curry--” Ichijo cuts off abruptly, as if he thinks he’s said too much, but then continues. “In any case, he’s been out of the country for a few months, and I’d like to treat him. He enjoys visiting new restaurants.”
Makoto’s smile becomes a grin. “I have a friend like that. Who loves food, I mean, not that he’s been out of the country. He runs a restaurant, he almost never travels. I’ve been trying to convince him to take a break for a while.”
“Really? Well, I’d say I should go to your friend’s restaurant, but it sounds like maybe he could use an evening off as much as I could.” As if to punctuate, Ichijo takes a long sip of his coffee, blinking tiredly. “Actually, you know, Hikawa, why don’t you come with us? Talk your friend into taking a night off too and we’ll all get dinner together. It’ll be my treat, senior to junior.”
“That’s, I--that’s incredibly kind of you to offer, thank you, I’d, we’d love to.” I’ll make Shouichi take a night off if it kills me. “Do you, uh--you said your friend eats pretty much anything. Do you like yakiniku?”
It takes less work than Makoto had been expecting to talk Shouichi into it. No work at all, actually--he explains, and Shouichi immediately brightens and says, “Oh, a double date, that sounds fantastic.”
“Well, no, I mean--I don’t think. I don’t know if Ichijo is. He just said friend.”
“That’s also what you call me.” Shouichi beams at him. “Don’t worry, I can think it’s a date without saying so.”
Makoto blushes. “I’m sorry, I just--worry. I mean, they might be, but if they aren’t--Ichijo’s my senior, I don’t want to offend him.” A pause. “But whatever it is for them, it’s a date for us.”
The first thing that strikes him about Ichijo’s friend is the smile, one hundred watts directed squarely at him from across the yakiniku place. The second thing, when they’re shaking hands, is the eyes.
“Godai Yusuke,” Ichijo’s friend says, and Makoto thinks, he has Shouichi’s eyes.
Not exactly, of course--it’s not as if they’re the same shape or color as Shouichi’s, his eyelashes are longer, laugh lines deeper. There’s a look, though, that he and Shouichi share, an intensity that Makoto finds jarringly familiar.
Granted, it’s not the first time he’s met someone else with eyes like that. Some people just have them. A journalist who interviewed Mana once for an article about psychics. The guy who does Makoto’s dry-cleaning. A man who stopped him once to ask for directions to the airport. Some people just have a gaze that knocks you flat.
Ichijo snaps him out of his brief surprise by clapping him gently on the shoulder. “I was going to introduce him, but he beat me to it. Godai, this is Hikawa Makoto, he’s a colleague of mine.”
“I’ve heard about you.” The hundred-watt smile again. “Ichijo thinks pretty highly of you, it’s great to get a chance to say hello.” He glances past Makoto’s shoulder.
“Right, ah. Ichijo, Godai, this is my friend Tsugami Shouichi, he runs Restaurant Agito over in--”
Godai brightens more, if such a thing is possible. “Agito? I’ve heard of there, I’ve been meaning to try it for a while but I just never seem to have the time. It’s your restaurant?”
Shouichi grins at him. “Yeah, for a few years now. You should come there sometime, since you’re friends of Makoto’s I’ll cook you something special.”
They all sit down at the table, and within a few minutes Shouichi and Godai are deep into a heated discussion about gardening techniques, of all things. Lost, Makoto glances across the table and catches Ichijo’s eye, and Ichijo flashes him a brief smile. “And until five minutes ago I didn’t realize that Godai knew how to garden. I should have guessed, of course. He knows how to do most things.”
Then he looks back at Godai, and there’s an expression that crosses his face, and it hits Makoto hard, that this is Ichijo looking at someone he’s in love with.
He wonders if Godai knows.
He hopes so, really, anyone who’s got Ichijo’s attention like that must be something special.
And Godai and Shouichi are talking about cooking now, and having an entirely different friendly disagreement about seasoning blends, and Godai turns to Makoto and says, “So do you cook, Hikawa? Because Kaoru doesn’t much, and someone’s going to have to settle this.”
“Oh, uh. I’m all right as a cook. I don’t actually cook much, though, I don’t think I can settle anything for you.”
Shouichi leans in a bit to say, in a loud stage whisper, “He’s good with tofu.”
Makoto groans. “Please don’t bring up the tofu.”
“I’m sensing that there’s a story behind this.” Ichijo turns to flag down a server as he’s speaking. “Please, bring up the tofu.”
Makoto covers his face with his hands. “Shouichi’s going to tell you every embarrassing thing he knows about me now, I can sense it.”
“Don’t worry too much.” Godai elbows Ichijo lightly. “I’ll keep it even by telling you embarrassing things about Kaoru.”
Ichijo’s eyes go wide. “You wouldn’t.”
Fortunately, this is when the server reaches them, and for another couple of minutes they all devolve into good-natured bickering as they order drinks and ask for recommendations about what meats are best today. Of course, they’ve all got favorites, and none of them are the same, so the server takes just the drink order with a promise to help settle things when she returns.
And--something odd happens.
They’re looking at the menu, talking over the different platters available, and Shouichi says, “Actually, look, you know, the number four selection looks good, we can always add stuff to it.”
Godai flinches.
It’s very slightly, almost imperceptible. Just a twitch, a flicker. And then it’s gone, and Godai is nodding and saying, “Maybe that and then the pork belly and--are those garlic mushrooms? Are they good here?”
Makoto’s known people in the past who got superstitious about the number four, but somehow he doesn’t think that’s it. He doesn’t want to ask, though, and risk disrupting their nice time. So he just says, “Yeah, those are newer on the menu, but they’re really delicious.”
The flinch stays with him, itching at the back of his mind. Something about it reminds him of...he’s not sure what.
The server returns with their drinks and takes their dinner order. Godai and Shouichi resume their seasoning argument, which somehow transitions seamlessly into a discussion of coffee-brewing. Ichijo, when he isn’t talking, continues to watch Godai like he’s the only person in the world.
“I feel like Tsugami and I might be dominating the conversation,” Godai says brightly after a bit. “So, Hikawa, are you allowed to talk about what you and Kaoru are working on? I would’ve gotten the story from him, but I only got back to Japan two days ago, haven’t had the time yet.”
“Oh, uh. We’re consulting in the new stage of an ongoing project.”
“Trying to convince the brass that the solution to their problems isn’t always to build a bigger gun.” Ichijo sighs. “Speaking of that, Hikawa, how’s your shoulder with the wet weather we’ve been having?”
“It aches, but at least it’s not seizing up. I was the bigger gun once,” Makoto says to Godai, who looks a little thrown by the segue. “In the, uh, Unknown situation, a few years ago. Or at least I wore it, I was G3′s equipper. I’m on this project now because I have hands-on experience with, um. Unusual situations.”
“That’s how we met,” Shouichi says unexpectedly next to him, “the Unknown thing. Makoto was interviewing a friend of mine about part of it.”
“Oh, I see. I was, ah, out of the country when that was going on,” and for some reason Ichijo reaches over and squeezes Godai’s hand as Godai continues talking. “I didn’t hear too much about it. What was G3?”
“It was--” Makoto scratches the back of his head, flips his piece of skirt steak on the grill. “Well, this might sound odd, but it was a sort of robot suit for fighting monsters? It was based on--”
Number Four. It was based on Unidentified Life Form Number Four.
The tiny flinch from earlier clicks into place with the vague knowledge Makoto has of Ichijo’s past work, Ichijo’s hand on Godai’s, “I was out of the country.”
I’m sitting across the table from Number Four.
The minuscule flinch replays itself in his mind again and again, and even as he’s suppressing the urge to jump up and shout he also changes tack. “--the designs of a friend of mine, Professor Ozawa, maybe you’ve heard of her? She actually won a fairly major engineering award a few years ago.”
His eyes meet Ichijo’s across the grill for a moment, and what he sees is alarm fading into clear, profound relief. They can’t nod at each other, not right now, not about this, but Makoto’s fairly sure he knows what Ichijo is thinking.
Fortunately--or maybe it’s not just fortune, maybe it’s intentional--Shouichi chooses this moment to say, cheerfully, “You know, this is making me realize that I never did tell you guys the tofu story.”
“Oh no.” Makoto groans. “Please. Please don’t.”
Ichijo actually laughs. Godai says, “Now I think he has to.”
By the time they finish dinner it’s late, and the street outside the restaurant is empty and quiet. It feels solemn. Good-byes are also quiet, friendly, Godai extracting a promise that they’ll all meet up again sometime soon before the group splits in two to go their separate ways.
Makoto turns back to look right before he sits down to drive, and in the dim streetlights he catches a glimpse of Godai leaning over from the passenger’s seat of Ichijo’s car, their mouths meeting in the shadows for a moment, and relief washes over him as he thinks, Good for them.
At home, he and Shouichi dance sleepily around each other as they change clothes, brush their teeth, try to decide whether to maybe watch something and then realize that they’re both too tired for it. They fall into bed, Shouichi curls up against his side, and it’s just as perfect as it always is.
Except that Makoto can’t sleep. Instead he stares at the bedroom ceiling, thinking about Shouichi, about Godai, about the other people he’s met with eyes like earthquakes. What have their lives been like? Did they, too, save humanity from things that no one remembers or will ever thank them for?
He glances down at Shouichi, expecting to find him asleep, and instead is, as usual, knocked down by a thoughtful, focused gaze. “What are you thinking about, Makoto?”
He shrugs. “I was thinking about Godai, mostly.”
Shouichi pouts comically in the dim light of the bedroom. “You’re not allowed to get a crush on your senior’s boyfriend.”
“I--no.” He can feel himself blushing. “No, that’s, that’s not it. He just...seems like someone who’s had an interesting life.” Maybe they can talk about Number Four tomorrow, or maybe they won’t talk about it ever.
“And what?”
“There’s an and, I can tell.”
“Well...” Makoto sighs. “Sometimes I wonder what my life would be like if I hadn’t met you.”
Shouichi curls in closer. “I wonder the same thing about you. I think I’d be a very different person. I think I’d probably be pretty unhappy.”
“So I was thinking about that, and about Godai.”
Makoto stares at the ceiling and wraps his arm around Shouichi’s shoulders and wonders how long it took Godai to be able to smile like that, after everything Number Four had to do. “I’m glad he has someone who loves him.”
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