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#writing this scene was so fun
whowhatifs · 13 hours ago
Snippet/Sketch Sunday
So I actually wrote something and wanted to share (despite the “never finishing what I share” curse) because I have not been feeling creative at all, but damnit I wrote something. This takes place right after my Sidestep, Jane, escapes from the Farm a second time and winds up going back to her old apartment. It brings up memories.
“No offense Jane, but I was preparing for a beige box with an air mattress in one corner and mini-fridge in the other.”
I pursed my lips, not arguing that point. A year prior she wouldn’t exactly have been far off. 
“Well your highness, make yourself comfortable and I’ll go get champagne out of the icebox,” I said dryly, but couldn’t help returning her smile. 
The late afternoon light filtered through the small window, catching the little glass crystal hanging from the blinds and sending rainbow lights across the walls, filtering through the loose hair that fell almost to her waist. It looked soft and an unfamiliar ball of warmth twisted in the pit of my stomach. I turned away.
The window is dark. 
My breathing is too loud. For a second I’m not sure I’m in the right place, it feels wrong. The ceilings are too low, the kitchen cabinets should be a natural oak instead of that sterile white, this entire goddamn place is claustrophobic, as if the walls are shifting closer every time my attention slips. 
Tagging @liamwynric @amlovelies @impossible-rat-babies @merry-harlowe @queerbrujas @natesquill and anyone else who wants to!! pls i need distraction
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elumish · 3 years ago
You’re allowed to like your writing.
One unfortunate side effect of the “your first draft is shit” rhetoric (which is mostly meant to encourage the understanding that you will need to edit and that having problems in your first draft doesn’t mean you can’t write) is that people tend to feel like they shouldn’t like their writing. They should only be critical of it, only see the flaws of it, and so be unhappy with their writing.
Being critical is good, but keep in mind that you’re not only allowed but encouraged to like what you’ve written. You should like it because that means it’s something people enjoy reading (because you are a person), but also because you will write better if you enjoy what you’re writing. Reread your old writing and smile at the lines that you love. Enjoy your fun scenes, laugh at your own jokes, cry at the tragedies you’ve written particularly poignantly. It’ll make you feel better. I promise.
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the-invisible-self · a year ago
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My name is Erin Darling, and I’m a queer watercolor artist form Tacoma, WA. I paint original anthropomorphic characters and storybook scenes.
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Art has been a lifeline for me. It connected me to people who chose to support me even when my kids’ dad left us, even when I came out of the closet as bisexual.
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My first book came out in 2019: Coco and Olive, The Color of Love. It’s a story about blended family by international adoption advocate, Michelle Madrid-Branch.
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My goal is to write and illustrate my own story books that feature inclusivity and queer characters.
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Patreon has been key to stabilizing my income so that I can achieve that goal, and I send out fun perks to my patrons each month: stickers, fridge magnets, notecards and art prints.
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It would mean a lot to me if you’d join my Patreon! The link is here!
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fuckyeahgoodomens · a year ago
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I actually decided I wanted David halfway through writing Episode Three. And every moment after that, I was writing Crowley for David. Every moment before that, I was writing ‘a Crowley’, but it was the scene 1941, in the Blitz, where I realized: I’m writing a scene in a church, Aziraphale is in there, there are Nazi spies, he thinks he’s being really clever, but actually he’s not, he’s in all sorts of trouble and Crowley has to come down the aisle of the church and rescue him. And of course, Crowley is now on consecrated ground - so he’s like a man on really, really hot sand on the beach. He’s walking down like: ‘ow, ow, ow, ow, ow’. And I’m writing the scene and I thought: David Tennant. There is no other human being I could think of who I want to do this scene. - Neil Gaiman, March 2019, SXSW
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sunflowervolvimp3 · a year ago
42 Hours
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Content: an enemies to lovers au in which Harry and Y/N are forced into a cross country road trip to make it to their best friends’ wedding on time
Warnings: language, mentions of nsfw content
Pairing: Harry Styles x reader
Word Count: 20k 
A/N: I actually cannot believe that this is finally being posted over almost a month of working on it!! originally, I was going to make this one long stand alone fic, but once I hit 35k with no end in sight, I decided to split it into two parts so that it would be easier to read for you guys.  I’m hoping to have part 2 posted within a week, so keep an eye out for it!! this fic was partially inspired by this post by @avhrodite​ (thank you miss bailey!!) and can I just say that I had so much fun writing it!! I love road trips!! it makes me so sad that I had to split this fic because there are so many fun music scenes in the next part but those will all come in due time!! I would also like to give a big thank you to miss andrea @adashofniallandasprinkleoflunacy​ and miss alex @darthstyles​ for putting up with me bouncing ideas off of them and for proof reading for me!! and miss andrea again for editing this stunning header pic!! also everyone I tagged is a wonderful writer and if you’re looking for more to read after reading this then I HIGHLY suggest taking a look through their masterlists. and as always, if you like this fic, please like and reblog it!! and shoot me a message!! feedback is always appreciated, not just by me, but by all content creators <3
also!! if you want to set the mood for a road trip with Harry, here is a link to the playlist that is mentioned and referenced in this fic!!
When she was a little girl, Y/N’s grandmother had told her about Murphy’s Law.  Grandma Sarah’s favourite activity was staring at her granddaughter over the kitchen counter, a knife in one hand and half an onion that she’d been cutting in the other, spouting various wisdoms at the young girl, who would often be sitting and peeling vegetables for her.  The old lady had hoped that, after being lectured enough times on life’s difficulties, Y/N might be able to avoid making the same mistakes that she had made in her own time.  She always had a list of advice that she’d cycle through, as if she were a record on a loop.
“Always look both ways before crossing the street.  Your great uncle Albert didn’t, and he never regained full function of his left hand.”
“Beauty fades, but there’s no shelf life on your mind.”
“The grass is always greener on the other side, so stop staring at it, and focus on taking care of your own lawn.”
All of the advice was, by any accounts, useful for anyone to know, especially a young girl.  Of course, sometimes the advice would get a little scrambled after Grandma Sarah had had a few glasses of wine, but even her tipsy thoughts were useful to Y/N in her later years.  To this day, Y/N still sets a glass of water on her nightstand before going out to a bar, and her hungover self is always grateful the next morning.  And Y/N had yet to find anything that smelled as sweet as a vanilla dabbed behind her ears and on her wrists when she runs out of perfume.  However, perhaps the most important piece of advice Grandma Sarah ever gave her came one afternoon when Y/N was eleven years old, and her older cousin Grace was due to get married the next week.
Grandma Sarah had cracked egg after egg into her mixing bowl, always without getting any unwanted pieces of shell in the egg whites, and gave her granddaughter a long look across the kitchen counter.
“When you get married, Y/N,” She had said, voice firm. “Remember Murphy’s Law.  Anything that can go wrong, will go wrong, and at the worst possible moment.  When Murphy’s Law comes into play, there’s nothing you can do except roll with the punches.”
Eleven year old Y/N had nodded her head seriously, as she always did when her grandmother told her seemingly important things.  The advice, despite its usefulness, however, didn’t stick around in her head, and Murphy’s Law didn’t cross Y/N’s mind for fourteen years.
It takes fourteen years for Y/N, who is standing in front of a flight check-in at LAX, two large suitcases next to her, one of which contains two gold wedding bands, passport in hand, and a distressed look on her face, to remember the law her grandmother had once told her about.
“When you get married, Y/N…anything that can go wrong, will go wrong, and at the worst possible moment.”
Taking a deep breath to calm herself, Y/N pushes the echoing words of her grandmother out of her head. “I’m sorry, just—” She gives a pained smile to the lady working the check in. “Can you explain that to me again, please?”
The lady also takes a deep breath, the smile on her ruby tinted lips just as pained as Y/N’s. “There’s a storm system moving through Utah and Colorado.  These systems have the potential to become tornadoes, and because of that, the conditions for flying are too dangerous right now, so all flights through that area are grounded until further notice.”
“So my flight is cancelled?” Y/N holds up the ticket in her hand that’s stamped with LAX – JFK. “This flight, this flight to New York, which is nowhere near Utah—that’s cancelled?”
The check-in lady, whose name tag reads Brynn, gives another tight smile. “Yes, ma’am.  It’s cancelled.”
“Okay, no, I’m sorry, Brynn, but that doesn’t work for me.” Y/N shakes her head fiercely as the manic rush of emotions through her begins to set in.  The denial, she finds, keeps the oncoming panic at bay, and so she decides to focus on that to ground herself. “My best friend is getting married in the Catskills in one week.” Y/N holds up one finger, as if her words are hard for Brynn to understand. “That’s one week from today.  I’m the maid of honour.  I have to be there to help organize, keep her calm, and make sure she actually makes it down the aisle, because—between you and me—she’s got some commitment issues—” The more Y/N speaks, the more her panic begins to spill out in her words, like a dam with a leak that’s about to burst. “And she forgot the goddamn wedding rings, so I have those too, and I just—I really need to get to New York, like, now. Right now.”
Y/N finally pauses to take a sharp breath, and Brynn, who had been waiting for her to finish, speaks again, her voice flatter than before.
“I’m very sorry to hear that, ma’am, but as I said, all flights are grounded right now.”
Pinching the bridge of her nose between her fingers, Y/N takes another deep breath.  Roll with the punches, her grandmother had told her.  What else is there to do? “Okay.” Y/N is careful to keep her voice in check when she speaks again. “Alright.  Do you know when they’ll be ungrounded?”
“As I’ve said,” Brynn’s smile is more of a grimace now, and Y/N knows that she’s treading on thin ice. “All flights are grounded until further notice.  We’re not sure when we’ll be able to open them again.  It could be a day, or it could be five.  If you’d like, I can put you down on a list to be called when flights are available again, but I’m afraid that’s the best I can do.”
“Let’s do that, then.” Y/N relents in a tired voice, already making plans to pick up a coffee on her way back to her apartment.  In the back of her mind, she begins to wonder if she has any Baileys Irish cream liqueur left in her kitchen cabinet—and if 8:30 A.M. is too early to be drinking Baileys with her coffee.
It takes Y/N two cups of coffee with Baileys (it had been 10 A.M. by the time she arrived home, thanks to L.A. traffic, and she had decided that 10 A.M. was a fine time to drink when one’s flight gets cancelled indefinitely) to work up the courage to call Jo and tell her that she isn’t sure if she’ll be able to make it to the wedding.
Josephine Waters, or Jo to anyone who doesn’t want to get punched in the arm, has been Y/N’s best friend since the girls were five years old.  They became fast friends on the first day of kindergarten, as Jo liked how Y/N could already colour inside the lines, and Y/N liked how Jo tackled a boy who tugged on Y/N’s pigtails.  From the very beginning, the two were a perfect match for each other; where Y/N was reserved, Jo was wild.  Where Jo was disorganized, Y/N was focused.  Each girl balanced the other in the most natural way, and it’s this fact that Y/N and Jo credit for the two of them staying friends for twenty years. As they grew up together, they grew together, taking the very best traits from the other and using it to help themselves develop.  Y/N had been the first person that Jo came out to, confessing to her best friend during an eighth grade sleepover in a quiet and nervous voice.  To Jo’s pleasure, Y/N had been completely supportive, and returned the favour from the first day of kindergarten by punching a boy in the nose for calling Jo a homophobic slur.  Jo helped Y/N through her parent’s divorce.  Y/N helped Jo manage her ADHD.  Jo talked Y/N through discovering her bisexuality in university. Y/N answered every 3 A.M. phone call to comfort Jo after a panic attack.  In every sense of the word, the two girls had been there for each other.
And now Y/N is going to miss Jo’s wedding.
The harsh realization digs a pit in her stomach as she opens her phone and clicks on Jo’s name.  It’s noon in L.A., which means it’s 3 P.M. in New York time, and Y/N knows Jo will answer.  She always does.
Sure enough, after three short rings, Jo’s voice chirps through the phone. “Hey, Y/N!  Has your flight landed already?”
“No, there’s—there’s been an issue.” Y/N downs another gulp of her coffee, wishing she had added more Baileys when she had the chance, and clears her throat before continuing. “There’s, um, a storm in Utah, and apparently it’s bad, and so all flights from L.A. to New York are grounded until further notice.”
Jo makes a scoffing noise, and Y/N can practically picture the indignant look on her face that she’s seen so many times before. “That’s ridiculous.  Did you tell them that New York is nowhere near Utah?”
“Uh huh.”
“What about that my wedding is in one week?”
“I told them that, too. Brynn didn’t seem to care.”
“Bitch.” Jo mutters under her breath. “Okay, just wait a second, Laure just walked through the door, so I’m putting you on speakerphone—”
Y/N hears rustling on the speaker, as well as muttering in the background as Jo speaks to her fiancée, and then Jo’s voice is back, sounding slightly more distant.
“Okay, so I told Laure what happened—”
“That’s awful, Y/N.” Laure’s voice is laced with stress, and Y/N can only imagine how much anxiety this information is adding to her already full plate. “They won’t tell you when flights will be leaving again?”
“Nope.” Y/N pulls her knees to her chest and wraps her free arm around them, leaning her head against the back of her couch.
“Okay, well, planes aren’t the only way to get here.” Laure says, always the more rational out of the two. “Maybe a car—?”
“Y/N doesn’t have one.” Jo chimes in, a hint of teasing in her voice, despite the serious problem that’s in discussion. “She’s scared of driving—”
Y/N sits up, an indignant look on her face. “I’m not scared of driving!” She says hotly, setting her empty coffee mug on the table with a thud. “I just hate L.A. traffic, and honestly, there’s no point!  I can walk to work, and Uber anywhere else I need to go!  A car would be completely useless to me!”
“Except now, when you’re about to miss your best friend’s wedding.” Jo points out. “What about renting one?”
Y/N sighs, her moment of indignation already fizzled out. “I tried that already.  There’s nothing available for a cross country trip.”
“And the drive is so long.” Laure murmurs, and Y/N knows it’s more for Jo’s benefit than hers. “It’s over forty hours.  She can’t do that by herself; it’s not safe.”
“Look, Jo, don’t worry about this, alright?” Y/N cuts across her best friend’s anxious voice, assuming her usual role of protector. “I’ll figure this out.  I promise you; I will make it to your wedding on time, looking pretty in my dress, and with your wedding bands.  I promise.”
“We’ll keep thinking about it and see what we can come up with.” Laure promises through the phone, her voice sounding further and further away. “This is just—it’s a bump in the road, but it’s fine.  We can work around this.  We’ll find a way.”
The way that Laure finds for Y/N pounds on her door at 7:30 A.M. the next morning.
Y/N, like any exhausted and stressed out adult who has already begun her ten days of vacation time that she booked off for the wedding, is fast asleep in her bed when she hears the knocking.  The loud noise pulls her out from her dreams abruptly, and she cracks one eye open, squinting through the sunlight that’s lighting up her room.  When the knock echoes through her apartment again, she pulls herself from her sheets with a groan, grabbing her robe from the back of her door and tying it around herself as she makes her way to the front hallway to yell at whoever has the audacity to wake her up.
When she opens the door, Harry Styles is peering down at her with an irritated look on his face.
“Took you long enough, Y/N.” He rolls his eyes as he speaks, finally stepping back from the door that he had been pounding on a moment ago. “Are you ready to go?”
Y/N rubs her eyes, suppressing a yawn as she does so. “Styles, I have no idea what you’re talking about.  What are you doing here?” She demands.  She doesn’t have the energy to deal with him right now, she thinks, let alone the mental capacity to listen to anything he has to say.
Harry crosses his arms across his chest, and it’s then that Y/N notices the duffel bag strewn over his shoulder. “It’s a forty-two hour drive from L.A. to the Catskills.” Harry’s eyes scan over Y/N’s appearance, the very corner of his strawberry pink lips twitching, and Y/N tightens her robe around herself with a glare.
“A drive?” Y/N asks, uncertainty growing in her voice as she crosses her arm over her chest. “What are you talking about?”
“Your flight was cancelled, right?” Harry’s voice grows more impatient as Y/N’s half asleep brain struggles to piece together what’s happening. “So was mine, so I decided to drive to the wedding, and then Laure called me last night, begging me to take you with me.” He shrugs a bit, fixing his sunglasses on top of his head as his jade eyes scan over her appearance one more time. “Not my first choice of road trip partner, but I don’t think the best man can say no to bringing the maid of honour.  And splitting the cost of gas will be nice.”
“Okay, wait, I…” Y/N’s finally coming out of her fog of exhaustion, and the newfound clarity of her mind is causing a newfound pit to develop in her stomach. “Laure and Jo didn’t tell me any of this.”
“Well, I expect they’re a bit busy, given that they’re getting married in a week.” Harry adjusts the strap of his duffel bag on his shoulder with a sharp sigh. “Look, are you ready to go or not?  It’s over a five day drive, so we need to leave as soon as possible.”
“I—yeah—” Y/N nods before taking a hesitant step back from the doorway, positioning herself to the side so that Harry can get by her. “I just have to get dressed and grab a couple last minute things, so…come in, I guess.”
Harry flashes an insincere smile to Y/N as he steps into her apartment, his eyes darting around at the furniture and home decor.  Y/N watches as his gaze lingers on her library of books, her yellow bicycle leaning against the wall, and every other little touch of herself that she likes her home to have, and she can see the judgement that’s clearly apparent in his eyes.
“You can sit, if you want.” She mutters, turning on her heel to go back to her bedroom. “I’ll only be a few minutes.”
The first thing Y/N does when she shuts her bedroom door behind herself is assess the situation in the analytical way that usually calms her.  Alright.  So a road trip across the country isn’t exactly ideal, and a road trip across the country with Harry Styles is even less ideal.  But, at the present moment, being stuck in a car with Harry seems to be the only sure way that she’ll be able to make it to Jo’s wedding on time. And for Jo, Y/N would put up with anything.  Even Harry.
As she rummages through her drawers for some leggings and a tank top, Y/N wonders what she could have possibly done to bring this much bad karma into her life.  While she gets dressed, her mind flickers back to Murphy’s Law, how everything that can go wrong will go wrong, in the worst possible way, and then she thinks about being in a confined space with Harry for five days, and—yeah.  That seems to be the worst possible thing she can think of.
Y/N remembers the first moment she’d met Harry seven years ago, and the unfortunate circumstances under which that meeting had happened.  Jo and Laure had just barely met back then, and Jo had begged Y/N to come out on a double date with her and “this really hot girl from my women studies class who I’m, like, 83% sure swings my way.”
Y/N had groaned at that comment, flopping back on her bed in the tiny dorm that she and Jo shared. “No! I have an essay due in three days that I haven’t even started!”
Jo rolled her eyes as she flopped down on Y/N’s bed as well, ignoring her own half-made bunk that was across the small room, favouring her best friend’s bed like she always did. “We both know you’re not starting that essay until the day before it’s due, and that it’s just an excuse because you don’t want to go!”
“I don’t want to go.” Y/N had agreed with a sharp and fervent nod.  She shut her laptop and pushed it to the side of her bed, knowing from experience that she wasn’t going to be able to focus and argue at the same time. “Why would I want to hang out with a complete stranger while you make googly eyes at a girl from your class?”
“Okay, first, I don’t make googly eyes.” Jo made a face at that comment, nudging Y/N’s calf with her own foot. “And second, he’s her best friend from high school, and he’s coming to visit all the way from London!”
“So?  He’s still a stranger!” Y/N pointed out, her eyes drifting to the sticky note covered novel beside her.  She picks it up and begins to flip through the marked pages as she speaks. “Knowing where he’s from doesn’t change that!”
“It should, because he’s only going to be here for a week, and Laure almost cancelled the date because she doesn’t want to miss spending time with him—” Jo grabbed one of Y/N’s pillows and tossed it at her arm, knocking the book from her hands. “Focus! So I said that he could come, but she said that she didn’t want him to be left out, so I said that I happen to have an incredibly beautiful and witty best friend who would be able to entertain Harry while we all hang out together.”
Y/N inhaled deeply as she gave Jo a withering look. “Did you already tell her I’m going?”
Jo, in return, gave Y/N her most dazzling smile. “Yes.  We’re meeting them for dinner at 7.”
Y/N shakes herself from her memories as she runs to her bathroom to toss her toiletries back into the bag she’d taken them out of the day before, working as quickly as she can. It does her no good to think of Harry in the past, she thinks, because the present Harry is currently sitting in her living room, probably snooping through her stuff, and the longer she takes to get ready to go, the more he’ll go through.  Not that there’s anything incriminating in her apartment, really—or at least, nothing incriminating in her living room.  When Y/N makes it back to her bedroom, however, to quickly zip up her suitcase, she does make sure she grabs her favourite vibrator from the box under her bed, tucking it between her half-folded underwear.  If she’s going to be gone for a week, she’ll need something to help her relax.
Within a few more minutes, Y/N is repacked and ready to go.  Her hunter green bridesmaid dress is carefully arranged on the very top of her clothes in her suitcase, all of her makeup and toiletries are packed inside, and Jo and Laure’s wedding rings are secured in little velvet boxes stashed between her socks.  As far as physical preparedness goes, Y/N is ready to go on a coast to coast road trip. As far as mental preparedness goes, however…that’s the thing that Y/N’s not quite sure about.
“What are you doing?”
Y/N glances at Harry from the corner of her eye, her hand still half stretched out to the radio dials in his car.  Although Harry’s green eyes are hidden behind his sunglasses, and his face is turned towards the long road in front of them, he still somehow manages to catch her motions, and it irritates her to no end.
“I’m changing the radio station?” Y/N answers after a moment, giving him a puzzled look. “I don’t know why you listen to this weird oldies station, but—”
“First of all—” Harry’s hands turn the steering wheel slightly to guide his car over the curve of the road, his jaw twitching as a smirk works its way onto his pink lips. “This isn’t a radio station, it’s my Spotify playlist.  I put a Bluetooth connection in Stevie a year ago. Secondly—”
“Stevie?” Y/N repeats incredulously, twisting her whole body as best she can to look at Harry straight on. “You named your car?  You’re one of those guys?”
Harry finally gives Y/N a flicker of a glance, the glare obvious in his eyes even behind his dark sunglasses.  He turns his attention back to the road before replying. “Secondly—” He continues from before, ignoring her comment as his right hand readjusts the gear shift. “Driver picks the music.”
Y/N makes a face, the corners of her lips pulling down into a grimace as she settles back into the passenger seat with her arms crossed. “So we’re just going to listen to ‘Tiny Dancer’ for the entire drive, are we?”
“Not the entire drive, no.” Harry flicks on his turn signal with a ringed hand before shoulder checking to change lanes.  Y/N glances at him, her eyes training on the strained muscles in his neck as Harry continues. “We’ll listen to ‘Don’t Go Breaking My Heart,’ too.”
“Great.” Y/N exhales slowly and presses her head back into the seat’s headrest, closing her eyes as Elton John’s voice continues to float through the speakers. “Really looking forward to it.”
“You know, maybe you should try to sleep.” Harry says, his voice prickled with irritation as Elton John bleeds into The Zombies. “I think you’ll be in a better mood after you take a nap.”
Y/N readjusts her crossed arms as she mutters a short reply. “Don’t tell me what to do.” Still, she shuts her eyes again, twisting her body towards the window in an attempt to get comfortable enough to sleep.  Being in the car with Harry is already giving her a throbbing migraine, and they’ve only been on the road for less than two hours.  Sleeping through most of the trip will probably be the only way she’ll be able to survive it.
Despite that realization, however, her phone vibrates in her lap three minutes later, pulling her away from her thoughts.  Y/N glances down at the now lit screen, catching her bottom lip between her teeth when she registers the name on the message.  Opening her phone quickly, she reads over the reply as a guilty feeling begins to build in her stomach.
BRANT: Hey, what are you doing tonight?  Want to grab some dinner?
“What’s wrong?”
“Hm?” Y/N’s head snaps back up, her eyes jerking in Harry’s direction.  Like before, he’s watching her from the corner of his eye, catching every one of her movements, and the constant surveillance is annoying to no end.
Harry, it seems, is either oblivious to her annoyance, or is choosing to ignore it. “I asked what’s wrong. You have a weird look on your face.” Harry’s blunt words are accompanied by the sound of him tapping his ring covered fingers against the gear shift. “Everything alright?  Is it Laure and Jo?”
“No, it’s just—” Y/N glances down at her phone again, fingers poised over her keyboard as she crafts a reply in her head. “It’s no one.”
Harry snorts once, a short and harsh sound that grates against Y/N’s nerves like nails on a chalkboard. “I don’t buy that for a second.”
“It’s no one to you.” Y/N updates her retort, turning her full attention back to her phone. “My personal life is none of your business.”
Y/N: I’m sorry, I can’t!! Caught a last minute ride to New York with somebody.  Maybe once I’m back?
“Personal life, huh?” Harry clicks his tongue once, and the childish noise is even more irritating than his snort. “What, you can’t talk to me about whoever you’re shagging?”
The blunt remark hits Y/N like a shot to the chest, and she sputters for a moment as she struggles to form a response. “I—we’re not—” Taking a moment to gather herself and clear her throat quickly, Y/N avoids Harry’s gaze as her cheeks begin to burn. “We’re not like that. We’ve just…had a few dates, that’s all. There’s nothing…official.”
“You don’t need to be official to have a shag, now, do you?” Harry lifts his hand from the gear shift to fix his sunglasses, settling it back down on his jean covered thigh once he’s done. “If you don’t want to date the bloke—”
“I didn’t say that.” Y/N cuts over him, pulling herself from her embarrassment enough to give him a cold glare. “He’s very nice—”
“Boring, you mean—”
“And I—this is none of your business!” Feeling the flush of embarrassment rise back to her cheeks, Y/N once again turns her attention to her passenger seat window, avoiding Harry’s pressing gaze. “I’m done talking about this.”
Harry gives an indifferent shrug. “Whatever.” He says casually, tapping his finger against his thigh as his shoulders once again lift slightly beneath his fitted black t-shirt. “I just feel bad for the guy, that’s all.”
The comment is bait. And the thing is, Y/N knows it’s bait.  She knows that the only reason Harry is saying it is to get under her skin and keep her talking about Brant, further embarrassing herself in the process. She’s been around Harry enough to know how he works, and she knows that the only reason he would say that is to bait her.  She knows she shouldn’t take it.  And yet—
“There’s no reason to feel bad for him.” Y/N scoffs as she fidgets with the position of her seatbelt, trying to stop the strap from cutting into her chest. “We’ve been talking for a month, and there’s nothing official happening.  Just because you can’t go that long without trying to stick your dick in someone—”
“You have no idea what I can do, Y/N.  Don’t pretend that you do.” Harry’s tone of voice is just as scoffing as hers, his eyes still set on the road in front of them intently as he gives his sharp response. Y/N watches as he shifts the gears of the car and speeds up, just enough to make the engine roar, but not enough to lose control of the car.  Part of Y/N wistfully wishes that he would just slip up and crash the car, just so she wouldn’t have to continue this conversation.
“All I meant,” Harry continues, unaware of the dark daydreams running through Y/N’s head. “Is that I feel bad that you’re clearly not interested in him, which is proven by the fact that you haven’t wanted him in your bed.”
Irritation flares through Y/N’s body again, stronger than the embarrassment of discussing her sex life (or lack thereof) with Harry, and she half considers just grabbing the steering wheel and yanking it into a passing cliff so she can finish them off herself. “For Christ’s sake, Harry, sex isn’t the only way to—”
“I don’t mean actually having it, that’s not a given.” Harry rolls his eyes from behind his sunglasses as he slows down for a curve in the road, his practiced hands once again changing gears with ease. “You don’t have to fuck him.  But you should want to, especially if you’ve had a month of dates, and you clearly don’t want to.”
Y/N doesn’t hide the incredulous stare of disbelief on her face as she turns to look at him. Harry’s face, though turned towards the road still, has a look of amusement mixed with contemplation on it, and it takes all of Y/N’s self control not to smack the expression off of him. Although there’s the ghost of a smirk on his strawberry coloured lips, his brow is furrowed behind his sunglasses, as if he’s thinking hard about the conversation between them.  Normally, Y/N would be amazed that Harry is thinking hard about anything.  However, given that their conversation is apparently turning into whether or not she wants to have sex with someone, Y/N’s not too thrilled about his sudden investment and serious contemplation of the topic.
Shaking her head decidedly, Y/N finally spits out a finishing phrase. “You don’t know what I want.” She says decidedly, reaching into the backseat to grab the sweater she stashed back there.  She clumsily pulls it over her body without taking off her seatbelt.  Harry keeps the AC cranked as high as he can, and she knows that he’ll kill her if she tries to change it. “You don’t know anything about me.”
“I know more than you think.” Harry counters, the tip of his tongue running along his bottom lip. “And I’m pretty good at reading body language.  You don’t really want him.  He—what’s his name?”
Despite her better judgement, Y/N answers in a flat voice. “Brant.”
The corners of Harry’s cherry lip twitches. “Brant.  Yeah. It’s clear you don’t really want him, and you’re wasting your time.  You’re wasting his time, too.  Poor Brant.”
“Poor—you’re such an ass, you know that?” Y/N’s irritation bubbles over as she gives Harry a nasty look, her hand squeezing her thigh hard in an attempt to ground herself in their conversation. “You can try to pretend otherwise, but you don’t know anything about me, or him, so—”
“You think I’ve been friends with Laure and Jo this long and haven’t learned anything about you?” Harry cocks an eyebrow, risking a glance at her as he presses a heavier foot onto the gas. “I told you, I know more than you think, and that includes your type.”
An incredulous scoff leaves Y/N’s mouth, and she shakes her head in obvious disbelief before responding. “My type.  Right. What is my type, then?  What’s Brant like, exactly, since you seem to know everything?”
Harry goes quiet then, his brow furrowing again as he returns his full attention to the road.  With his incessant chatter gone, the only sounds in the car being “Maps” playing quietly in the background and Harry’s ringed index and forefinger tap on the steering wheel.  Y/N breathes out a long sigh of satisfaction as she relaxes back in her seat, her attention turned back to the blurred landscapes speeding by her window.  Finally, she’s managed to get Harry to stop with his ridiculous assumptions—
“You like someone that’s stable and secure, so he probably works in some corporation, or an office job. Majored in business, I’d think, but has a minor in something like mathematics.” The side profile of Harry’s nose wrinkles in disgust at the thought. “He wants to work his way up in the company, but never wants to actually start anything on his own.  He likes the stability of a blueprint. You’re obsessed with punctuality, so he’s probably always on time to pick you up for dates—and he has to pick you up, because you don’t drive—and your dates are never really dates. Dinners, or movies, or something like that, but they never really have that spark.” Harry’s shoulder lift slightly as he continues to make his conclusions. “Which, honestly, is probably a big reason in why you don’t want to fuck him, because as much as you like stability and safety, you also like the idea of a grand gesture, or something like that.  And you probably split the bill a lot at dinner, right?  Because it just seems fair, but really it’s because you know it’s not a real date.  But it passes the time, and he’s nice, so it’s fine.  But it’s only fine.” Harry licks his lips once more as he collects his next thoughts, his teeth catching his bottom lip just barely as his tongue retreats back into his mouth. “And he’s probably already talking about you coming to meet his family for some holiday.  Not in a romantic way, but just because he likes to plan everything in advance to every minute detail.  Just like you.”
Halfway through Harry’s speech, a flush had begun to creep up Y/N’s neck, continuing to warm her jaw and ears before settling on the apples of her cheeks.  She keeps her eyes trained on her window and her mouth pressed into a tight line, refusing to look at Harry and give him any hint of just how shocked she is that he’s guessed so much.
Harry, however, doesn’t plan on letting her get away from his inquisition. “Well?” He impatiently prompts after a moment, and even though she’s not looking at him, she can feel him looking at her, his emerald irises burning into the back of her head. “Am I right?”
“I—” Y/N clears her throat quickly, but her voice is still strained and tight when she replies. “No.”
Harry hums low in his throat, and his voice is laced with curiosity with he replies. “Really?” The irritating tap of his fingers on the steering wheel to the beat of the music continues. “What did I get wrong?”
“He—” Y/N hates the way her skin is burning from his interrogation, how her voice shrinks smaller and smaller the more she speaks.  If Harry knows her so well, then he knows how much she loves being in control, and in this situation, with Harry managing to pull every one of her most secret inner thoughts and feelings out of her without trouble, she feels anything but in control. “He has a minor in accounting, not mathematics.”
The laugh that leaves Harry’s mouth is loud and bombastic, and his whole body curves over the steering wheel as the sound rolls out of him, his eyes just barely managing to stay on the road while his sunglasses slide down his nose. “Right.” Harry says between belly laughs, his voice stretched out in amusement. “But everything else was spot on?”
Y/N keeps her stiff body turned towards the window, refusing to engage in the conversation any further. That doesn’t stop Harry, however, who fixes his sunglasses as chuckles continue to roll out of him.
“I take it back. Maybe he’s the one wasting your time.” His hand runs through his hair lazily, fixing the curled strands that had fallen into his eyes as he laughed. “I don’t blame you for not wanting to sleep with your bore of a boyfriend—”
“He’s stable!” Y/N breaks her silence to protest Harry’s words, her voice heated. “And he’s not my boyfriend.  We’ve been seeing each other, but we’re not—it’s not exclusive, or—nothing serious—”
“You don’t have to explain yourself to me.  It’s fine.” Harry waves off her arguments with a flick of his tattooed hand. “Besides, like you said, it’s none of my business, right?”
Y/N can practically picture what Harry looks like in this moment.  His chestnut curls are probably a mess from fidgeting with them, and his cheeks are most likely rosy beneath his stubble from the peels of laughter that left his equally red lips a moment ago.  Most infuriatingly of all, his dimples are probably present, making little indentations in his cheeks to show how entertaining he’s found embarrassing her. Bastard, she thinks, clenching her fists so hard that her nails dig into her palms, pressing them into her sides beneath her makeshift blanket.
She refuses to let herself confirm if her suspicions about Harry’s appearance are correct, and instead keeps her gaze on the blurred trees whipping by outside her window. “Right.” She mutters, leaning her head against the headrest as she closes her eyes. “It’s none of your business.”
As soon as the paint-peeled door to the motel room swings open, Y/N knows that she’s not going to be sleeping soundly tonight.
She’s not sure what her first hint should have been.  Perhaps it was the half-flickering blue and red light of the Motel 6 sign that should have tipped her off, or the front-desk attendant who looked as though he was hiding a few secrets himself.  When Y/N and Harry had first approached the front desk of the tiny, vaguely mildew-smelling lobby, their clothes rumpled from the drive and their attitudes just as bothered, the employee in the Motel 6 uniform had barely raised an eye at them, not bothering to look up from his computer until Y/N and Harry were directly in front of him.
“Hi.” Harry had said, his voice taking on a cautious but polite tone that, Y/N remembers thinking, she would have appreciated hearing throughout their eight hour drive that day. “We’d like two rooms, please—”
“Here.” The attendant’s gum snapped in his mouth as he reached behind himself and grabbed an old key with a flimsy blue plastic tag from a wall of empty pegs. “Queen sized bed, the first door on the left.  It’ll do you two nicely.”
“Um, no.” Harry cleared his throat loudly as he gave a slight shake of his head. “We need two rooms.”
Finally, the attendant looked towards them, his eyes scanning Harry before Y/N.  The latter had self consciously pulled her sweater around her, as there was something in the attendant’s eyes that had bothered her. “Don’t have two rooms.  I got one room left.  Everything else is booked.”
Harry had glanced at Y/N then, and she knew that his thoughts mirrored hers: there was no way that they’d share a queen bed together.  No way in hell.  They’d barely survived eight hours in the same cramped car without one of them driving them off a cliff.  If Y/N had to share a bed with Harry, even for just one night, she’d probably end up smothering him in his sleep before the first snore left his obnoxious mouth.
“That’s really not an option.” Y/N had stepped forward then, crossing her arms around herself as the attendant’s eyes canvassed her again. “Isn’t there something—”
“Look, lady, I’m telling you what’s available.” The attendant’s eyes continued to flicker between her face and her chest, making Y/N’s skin crawl more and more with every word that fell from his gum-filled mouth. “The room might have a pull out chair—some do, but I couldn’t tell you which.  Now do you want to share the room with him or not?  If you don’t want to share, then I could try to find something else for just you—”
Before Y/N had the opportunity to respond to the lewd suggestion, Harry was already stepping forward, his body angling protectively in front of her own.  She watched from behind as his broad shoulders squared beneath his black t-shirt, his shoulder blades flexing as he straightened up to his full height.  When Harry answered, his voice was just as firm as it was dark, lacking its previous polite tone.
“We’ll take the room.” He had said coldly, reaching into his back pocket to pull out his wallet before tossing a few bills on the front desk. “Thanks for the help.”
Yes, Y/N thinks, all of that should have been a sign for the state of the motel room that they now find themselves standing inside.
The same mildew smell from the lobby surrounds them, permeating through every inch of air that Y/N breathes in. Dust seems to coat every surface as well, with thick layers of it covering the decades old TV and stand, the small coffee table, and the ledge of the window to her right.  To her relief, there is a small arm chair in the corner, which must be the pull out that the attendant had mentioned.  However, her relief is short lived when she sees the ratty beige comforter on the bed, and wonders if maybe sleeping in Harry’s car, which she had sworn to him that she didn’t want to do, might have been the better choice.
Harry shuts the door behind them with a firm thud, turning the deadbolt lock before attaching the chain from the door to the door frame. “Let’s keep that locked, yeah?” He mutters, walking to the window and making sure the beige curtains—everything in the room is a sea of beige, like some sort of khaki coloured nightmare—are pulled closed tightly. “I don’t trust that front-desk prick not to sneak in here.”
Y/N nods, fixing the strap of her duffel bag with her overnight clothes on her shoulder.  She’s not quite sure where to set it down, as everything around them seems to have been sitting stagnant and uncleaned for a while. “Yeah. Thanks, by the way.  For that.”
Harry acknowledges her thanks with a small grunt, barely lifting his head to look at her. “You don’t need to thank me.”
Despite her gratitude for his actions, Y/N can’t stop herself from rolling her eyes at his gruff response. “Jesus, can you not just say you’re welcome?”
Harry chooses to ignore her comment, and instead sets his bag down on the arm chair, unzipping it roughly. “You can take the bed.” He says simply, tossing his sunglasses into his bag before pulling out a small bag filled with what Y/N assumes are toiletries. “I’ll take the pullout.”
“Fine.” Y/N reluctantly sets her own bag down on the creaking bed, pulling back the covers to check for anything unsightly.  To her relief, the interior of the bed looks cleaner than the exterior, and she returns the covers to their previous position before grabbing her phone charger from her duffel.
Harry glances at her as she gingerly sits on the bed and plugs her phone into the wall. “I’m going to shower.” He says slowly, as if gauging her reaction to the simple phrase. “Do you, um, need in there, or—?”
“Nope.” Y/N shakes her head, her cheeks flushing slightly as she checks her messages. “You’re good.” She keeps her eyes glued to her phone until she hears the click of the bathroom door behind Harry, signalling that she’s alone.
Taking advantage of what she knows will be a rare moment of solitude over the next week, Y/N changes from her tank top and leggings into her pajamas, wishing that her past self had realized how likely it would be that she’d be sharing a room with Harry. She’d brought exactly two pairs of pajamas with her on the trip, and neither pairs were something she wanted Harry to see her in.  The first pair, a baby pink silk set she’d bought on a whim from her favourite lingerie shop, is eliminated before Y/N even considers them, leaving her with just her usual casual pajamas.  Unfortunately, Y/N’s usual casual pajamas consist of an old sports bra that she’d had since moving to L.A., and a pair of men’s boxers that she stole from an ex in college.  Still, despite her hesitancy, she knows that plaid boxers and a faded grey sports bra are better than pink silk and lace, and she changes into them quickly before sitting cross-legged on the bed and dialing Jo’s number.
Jo, like she usually does, answers on the third ring, her voice extra chipper to compensate for the verbal lecture that she knows is coming. “Hey, Y/N!  How was driving today?”
“It would have been better if I’d known Harry was driving.” Y/N sighs, rubbing her palm over the cold skin of her exposed thigh. “Shouldn’t I have been informed of that decision?”
“It completely slipped my mind, actually.” Jo says casually, and Y/N can just picture her leaning her chin into her palm. “How was the first day?  Are you calling to ask me to help bury his body in the desert?  Because, like, you know I would in a heart beat, but I think it may put a damper on mine and Laure’s nuptials if my best friend murders her best friend.”
“No one’s been murdered. Yet.” Y/N glances at the bathroom door, the sound of the shower echoing through the vents and into the bedroom. “Although a ‘help me hide the body’ phone call may be coming soon.”
“Uh oh.” Y/N hears something crackling against the speaker, and pictures Jo shifting the phone from one ear to the other. “Is it that bad?”
Y/N pinches the bridge of her nose as she contemplates the easiest way to answer Jo’s question. “He’s such an irritating ass.  He really is.” She lowers her voice, but only slightly.  If Harry’s eavesdropping, she thinks, then let him hear.  It would serve him right. “He wanted to pick a fight over every little thing, and he’s so particular about his car—did you know he named it?  He named it, Jo.  He talks about it like it’s a person!”
A loud sigh echoes through the speaker. “That’s really not that weird, you know.” Jo replies in her best peace keeping voice. “And, by the way, did you know that you’re really the only person who finds Harry irritating?  Laure adores him, and I really like him, and everyone who meets him thinks he’s very thoughtful!”
“Then they haven’t been trapped in a car with him and his playlists for eight hours.” Y/N begins to tap her fingers against her knee in a quick staccato pattern. “He practically interrogated me about Brant today, as if he has any clue about the people I date.”
“Did he?” There’s a trace of curiosity in Jo’s voice now, and Y/N can imagine her leaning forward in interest. “What did he say?”
“He said he thinks he’s boring.” Twisting a lock of her hair behind her ear as she speaks, Y/N leaves her hand resting against her cheek. “He was rude about it, too.  I didn’t ask for his opinion.”
“Well, honestly, Y/N…” Jo’s curiosity twists into hesitation. “Brant isn’t exactly the most thrilling person.  You know that.”
Y/N tugs her bottom lip between her teeth, her cheeks flushing for what seems to be the millionth time that day. “I’m aware of that.  But he didn’t need to be so smug about it!”
“Okay, well, what’s done is done.” Jo says as she takes on her mediator persona once again. “So there’s nothing else to do now except go to sleep, get back in the car tomorrow, and continue driving.”
The sound of the shower stream cuts off, leaving just the pitter patter of rain beginning to hit the roof of the motel as ambiant noise. “I guess.” Y/N mumbles, fidgeting with the waistband of her bra. “I’ll talk to you later.  Love you.”
“Love you, too.”
After the line clicks dead, Y/N flops back on the squeaking mattress and begins to scroll through her phone, opening her work email to check if everything is running okay back home while she’s gone.  On top of all this, the last thing she needs is for her work to completely blow up in her absence.  Within minutes, Y/N becomes so engrossed in her phone that she doesn’t even notice the bathroom door creaking open and Harry walking out with just a towel around his waist.
Until she looks up, and then her mind goes completely blank.
Immediately, Y/N feels overstimulated.  There’s just…so much going on that she doesn’t even know where to look first, let alone have the ability to remind herself that she shouldn’t even be looking at Harry like this in the first place.  
Harry’s curls are soaking wet, curling down around his flushed cheeks in a way that, if it were anyone else, she’d immediately describe as attractive.  Droplets of water are clinging to every inch of his skin, his toned and tanned and tattooed skin, that seems to continue forever as her eyes travel down his bare chest, noticing every curve of his muscle.  His jade cross, which is almost the exact shade of his eyes, sits between his pronounced pectoral muscles, moving ever so slightly with each step he takes.  Y/N notices tattoos she’s never seen before, like the giant butterfly across his toned stomach, and—her mind goes blank for just a moment—two vines that are tattooed over his prominent pelvic muscles, which just barely dip beneath the white towel that’s wrapped loosely around his hips.
As Y/N’s eyes glue themselves to the way Harry’s towel is moving as he walks, arousal begins to pool in her stomach, travelling all the way down to her core and back again.  For a split second, she thinks that maybe Harry is right.  Maybe she doesn’t want to fuck Brant, because she knows for certain that she’s never thought about him the way she’s thinking about Harry in this moment.
But it’s Harry, she reminds herself, as she tries to force herself to snap her gaping mouth closed. Underneath all those muscles and tattoos—and there are a lot of muscles and tattoos—it’s Harry, who annoys her to no end, who is one of the most self-absorbed individuals she’s ever met, and who has had it out for her since the day they met.
“Sorry.” Harry’s low accent snaps Y/N from her thoughts and pulls her wandering eyes back to his face. “Forgot my clothes out here.”
“It’s—” Y/N’s voice cracks in the middle of the word, still hyper-focused on just how it’s possible for one person to be as attractive as they are irritating, and she clears her throat before trying to speak again. “It’s fine.”
If Harry notices the slip in Y/N’s voice, he doesn’t say anything.  Instead, he just walks to his open bag, locking one hand firmly over his towel as the other searches through his clothes.  He pulls out a t-shirt and a pair of shorts, examining them for just a moment before nodding in satisfaction and heading back to the bathroom. Y/N almost swears that she sees him glance at her one last time before he shuts the door, but then she gets lost in the taut muscles of his back, and forgets what she’s thinking entirely.
She’s only just begun to contemplate that maybe she should pull herself together when the door opens again, and Harry exits the bathroom in a way that’s a little more presentable.  His hair is still damp, but his body is dry, proven by the faded Rolling Stones t-shirt that’s now clinging to his arms and the boxers that are hanging low on his hips. His tattooed hips.  His incredibly sexy tattooed hips that could probably—
“What are you wearing?” Harry asks, raising an eyebrow at her as he moves his bag from the chair to the ground.  He begins to unfold the bed from the armchair cushions to reveal a creaking twin bed, carefully stretching it out as he waits for an answer.
“I—pajamas.” Y/N glances down at herself self consciously, fixing the strap of her sports bra as she does so. “I just—I didn’t think we’d be sharing a room, so…”
Harry nods tersely as he finishes setting up the bed, his expression unreadable while he walks to the closet and grabs a set of sheets and a blanket. “Cute boxers.” He says casually. “Are they Brant’s?”
Within a flash, the intense rush of attraction and desire Y/N had been feeling is gone, and is instead replaced by the familiar irritation as she watches a smirk grow in the very corner of Harry’s mouth. “No.” She says flatly, turning her attention back to her phone.
“Interesting.” Harry says slowly, laying the sheets and blanket on the bed in a haphazard manner. “Whose are they, then?”
Y/N gets up from the bed and grabs her toiletry bag from her duffel before answering. “An ex.” She says shortly, tucking the patterned bag under her arm. “And why does it matter to you?”
The sound of the rain against the roof and windows gets louder and louder as they speak, and Harry raises his voice to be heard over the precipitation. “It doesn’t.” He shrugs as he maneuvers his lanky body under the blanket without causing the bed to fold in on itself. “Just curious, that’s all.”
“Well, you don’t need to be curious.” Y/N opens the bathroom door, sparing one last withering glance at Harry over her shoulder.  He’s sitting up on the bed with one leg hanging out from beneath the covers as one hand plays with his hair, the other fiddles with a ring on his finger, and the way he looks at her from the corner of his eye lights a fire in Y/N’s chest.  Except she can’t tell if it’s a fire of anger or arousal.  
When she slams the door behind her, it’s her own confusion over that distinction that frustrates her more than anything else.
“Took you long enough.” Harry scoffs while leaning against the side of his car, his white t-shirt a contrast to the dust covered body of the black Chevy Impala.  His dark sunglasses are perched on top of his head, keeping his unruly curls out of his eyes, while his arms are crossed over his chest impatiently as he waits for an answer. “I dropped off the keys ten minutes ago.”
By way of explanation, Y/N holds up the cardboard drink tray in her hands, a brown bag balancing in between the two coffee cups. “I was getting us breakfast, Styles.  Calm down.” She walks to the passenger side of the car, opening the door and climbing in one handed. “I figured you’d be even crabbier hungry.”
“You mean you’d be crabbier without caffeine.” Harry retorts, climbing into the driver’s side in one smooth motion. “Here—” He takes the tray from her so she can buckle her seatbelt, carefully removing the two coffees and setting them in the cup holders between them. “Just be careful not to spill anything.”
Y/N rolls her eyes as she picks up the coffee closest to her (she’d gotten them both black). “Why? Worried about me ruining Stevie?”
Harry reaches into his pocket, pulling out his keys as he gives her an irritated look. “Yes, actually. I’ve put a lot of work into her.” The car roars to life as Harry turns the key in the ignition, buckling his own seat as the motor warms up. “Adding on two thousand miles to her in five days is already worrisome enough, and that’s not even counting the other two thousand she’ll get on the way back.”
Y/N doesn’t respond to the comment, and instead lets the sound of Harry’s playlist fill the silence of the car as Harry peels out of the Motel 6 parking lot.  She’ll be glad to leave that place behind, she thinks, and focus on finding something better—and more private—for tonight, wherever they end up.
Harry, however, doesn’t seem content with letting silence fall between them. “How did you sleep last night?” He asks after a few moments, one hand on the steering wheel as he takes a sip of his coffee.
Glancing at him from the corner of her eye suspiciously, Y/N reaches into the paper bag and grabs her Danish, taking a small bite before answering. “Not great.”
“Was the bed bad?” Harry asks curiously, his brow furrowing while his eyes stay glued to the road, moving only to glance at the occasion sign directing him back to the highway. “The pull out wasn’t great, but I’ve slept on worse.  I would’ve thought the bed would be better than that.”
“No, it—I mean, the bed wasn’t amazing, but it—” Y/N clears her throat and swallows the bite of pastry in her mouth. “I, uh, I don’t sleep well when it’s raining.”
At this new information, Harry’s eyebrow quirks up, and he risks a look in her direction to attempt to read her face.  Y/N’s own eyes are focused on the Danish in her hands, refusing to meet his gaze as she lifts the pastry to her mouth to take another bite.
“You don’t?” Harry asks after a moment, the confusion in his voice almost visible within the space between them. “But it’s like white noise, isn’t it?  Supposed to be relaxing, and all that.”
Y/N gives a half shrug of her shoulders. “It’s—well, it’s not the rain, exactly, just—what it’s usually paired with.” Y/N hopes that her clear hesitancy to answer will be enough of a signal to Harry for him to drop the subject.  Harry, however, doesn’t seem to pick up on the reluctance in Y/N’s voice; or, at least, he doesn’t care enough to acknowledge it.
“What do you mean, what it’s paired with?” Harry takes a small sip of his own coffee, careful of the temperature of the liquid. “Like…wind, or—?”
Y/N debates back and forth with herself internally, but she knows that Harry won’t drop the subject without getting a satisfying answer. “Thunder.” She answers finally, setting her coffee down in her cup holder before turning her gaze towards her window. “I don’t like thunderstorms, ever since I was a little kid, and when it’s raining, it always feels like thunder is around the corner.  Puts me on edge, like I’m waiting for it.  And I can’t sleep.”
“So you never sleep when it rains?” Harry asks slowly, and the tone of incredulous disbelief in Harry’s voice is enough for Y/N to be able to imagine the expression on his face. His forest green eyes wide, strawberry pink lips agape, brow furrowed in confusion, his jaw slack as he contemplates a response to a grown woman admitting that she’s afraid of thunder. The image in her head is enough to make the back of her neck flush.
There’s a tightness in the back of her throat, and Y/N attempts to clear it again before answering. “Never.”
“Huh.” Harry taps his fingers against the gear shift in succession three times. “You’d hate London, then.”
The casual comment catches Y/N by surprise, but she doesn’t allow herself to lower her guard. “That’s why I don’t live in London.” She mumbles the words as her fingers pick at the napkin wrapped around her Danish. “I picked L.A. for a reason.  It has lots of heat, barely any rain, and I’m reasonably close to Disneyland whenever I feel like I need something magical.” The last part slips out without Y/N thinking, and the flush creeps further up her neck as a surprised laugh leaves Harry’s mouth.
“Something magical?” Harry repeats, new crinkles appearing next to his eyes as he laughs, as if the dimples that crease his cheeks aren’t proof of his amusement enough. “Do you frequently feel like you need something magical?”
It’s Y/N’s turn to give an incredulous look now, her body half twisting towards Harry to observe his confusing reactions. “How did I just admit that I’m afraid of thunder, and the thing you’re focusing on is that I like Disney?”
Harry shrugs at her words, flicking on his turn signal to exit towards the highway. “I don’t know.” He says as he peers over his shoulder to check for oncoming cars. “I mean, everyone has fears.  Not liking thunder isn’t exactly uncommon, you know.  However, hearing that Ms. Serious Type A Perfectionist likes magic—” His grin grows bigger by the second. “Now that’s surprising.”
“Oh, shut up.” Y/N mutters, finishing her Danish in a few more bites.  She waits until she’s entirely finished chewing before continuing the conversation over the voice of Billy Joel coming through the speakers. “Since I’ve admitted something I’m afraid of…” She starts, glancing at Harry from the corner of her eye. “I think it’s only fair that you admit something, too.”
Harry snorts in response, his hand freezing its movement with his coffee cup still half lifted to his lips. “Is that so?”
“Mhmm.” Y/N hums as she slips off her shoes in order to pull her legs beneath her to fold into a cross-legged position on the car seat. “Not so much fun when it’s your turn, huh? C’mon, what’s the Brit scared of? Not enough biscuits for afternoon tea?”
A short and harsh breath of air leaves Harry’s nose, half a snort as he sets his coffee down in his cupholder. “No, actually, diminishing biscuit levels are a low level fear for me.”
“Then what’s a higher one?” Y/N prods, watching as Harry’s neck muscles tense as he shoulder checks to change lanes.  There’s something about the movement that catches her eye, but she can’t quite figure out why—or rather, she can, but she’d rather pretend that she’s unaware.
“Uh…” Harry’s fingers nimbly switch on his turn signal before he transitions to the left lane, his right hand moving the gear shift to its desired place. “Crowds.  I’m not a fan of big crowds, really.  Like when everyone’s pressed together, so tight that you can’t breathe, and you can’t hear yourself think because it’s so loud…yeah. I don’t like that.”
The simple answer surprises Y/N as much as she imagines her answer surprised Harry. “Crowds?” She repeats back to him, a forgotten memory of long gone conversations coming to the forefront of her mind. “But what about, like, concerts and stuff?  Laure always told me when she’d go to shows with you…”
“That’s different.” Harry shrugs as one of his ringed hands comes to his lips, rubbing over them slowly as he contemplates his next words. “I…When I’m at concerts, I always go with someone, and if we’re in the general seating area, where there’s a lot of people, I always stick with them.  Like, sometimes, if it’s getting crowded, or people are pushing, Laure will hold my hand, so…” Redness begins to creep up Harry’s pale neck, staining the tops of his ears a deep berry colour as he trails off.
Not for the first time since their conversation began, Y/N is surprised at how candid they’re being with each other.  As she watches Harry’s blush grow, she feels her own diminish, a physical representation of her trading her embarrassment for something more empathetic.
“I get it.” Y/N says after a moment, once it’s clear that Harry isn’t going to continue. “When there’s thunderstorms, um, I feel better when I’m with someone, or talking to someone. It makes me feel less…”
“Alone?” Harry finishes for her, his eyes flickering from the road to her profile.  His green irises capture hers for longer than they should, his focus completely gone from the stretch of highway for at least five seconds before Harry’s attention turns back to driving. “Yeah.” He says slowly, pulling his sunglasses down from his hair to hide his eyes. “Yeah, less alone. It helps.”
Y/N nods slowly, unable to look away from Harry’s side profile.  It’s apparent that he’s on edge after their conversation, and she knows her body language is the same.  Tight in the shoulders, hands clenched, back rigidly straight.  And yet, seeing her own body language reflected in front of her bothers her.  Part of her wants to reach out and take Harry’s hand, soothe him like Laure does in the crowd of a concert, but she knows that’s ridiculous.  It’s ridiculous, and it’s Harry, and Harry, of all people, does not need her comfort.  Not in the slightest.
She watches as Harry clenches his fist on top of his thigh.
“Is this really necessary?” Y/N asks, slamming her car door shut as Harry does the same on the other side of the vehicle.  She leans over the roof of the car, crossing her arms on the cool metal as she tilts her head to the side in an inquisitive manner.  The clouds in the sky are getting darker by the minute, signalling the beginning of the storm that canceled her flight, and the angry black colour above their heads is making Y/N anxious.
Harry, however, seems unbothered by the gathering storm, and nods tersely as he pushes his sunglasses up onto his head before opening the door to the backseat and grabbing his army green jacket. “Of course it’s necessary.” He says, slipping the jacket over his broad shoulders before slamming the door shut and locking the car. “I’ve never been to Utah before.  I want a souvenir.”
“Okay, but—” Y/N follows Harry as he walks towards the dilapidated building in front of them. “Here? Really?  Does this seem like the best place?”
Harry glances at her over his shoulder at her, pausing his long strides to look up at the building he spotted from the highway.  If the chipped grey paint that was once pastel blue and dust-coated windows are any sign, the structure is probably older than Harry and Y/N combined, with a splintered front porch wrapping around its small perimeter.  The building has one faded sign above the door that reads “SOUVENIRS/SNACKS” in hand-painted capital letters, and seems to be hanging onto the outside façade by three small bolts and sheer willpower.  Y/N’s almost certain that she’s seen this exact building in a horror movie before someone gets murdered, and while getting back into the car with Harry isn’t at the top of her list of wants, it’s certainly preferable to getting stabbed to death by a serial killer.
“It’s fine, Y/N.” Harry waves off her concern without a second thought about the appearance of the shop. “If you’re really bothered, you can wait in the car.”
Y/N considers it for a moment, but decides against it.  She needs to stretch her legs, and honestly, Harry seems too trusting.  He probably wouldn’t be able to tell if someone was sketchy until their knife was in his back.  And, seeing as how he has the keys to the only getaway car available, Y/N kind of needs him around without a stab wound carved into his flesh.
“Let’s just get this over with.” She sighs, pulling her own jacket around her tighter as she steps over the worn wooden steps to the door. “We’re on a schedule.”
When Harry pushes open the door, the smell of stale air hits Y/N before anything else.  Despite one open window and a fan in the corner of the shop that’s being used in a weak attempt to circulate the air, it feels like nothing fresh has been in the shop for a while.  Y/N shoots a glance at Harry, caution and warning written all over her face.
While Harry sees her glance, he waves off her concern, turning his attention to the few shelves and wire racks around the small shop that are lined with inventory.  Within a few moments, he’s entertaining himself in the post card section, comparing different photos of the Utah landscape to each other with great care and concern.  Y/N observes him for a few moments before wandering off on her own towards the snack section of the shop.  Although there are a few items that she thinks about picking up, the thick layer of dust over the packaging puts her off from purchasing them.  She grimaces as she continues walking, stopping in front of a tower of silver key chains in the back corner of the shop.  Most of them, she finds, are crosses and bible verses, and all of them give her an ominous feeling in her stomach.  Y/N runs her finger over a miniature silver version of the Ten Commandments, worrying her bottom lip between her teeth as she does so.
“I think we should go, Harry.” She calls to him without turning around, setting the key chain back down on the rack carefully. “Just pick your post card and—Harry?”
When Y/N turns around, Harry’s broad figure is nowhere to be seen.  She walks back over to the post card section slowly, her brow furrowed with confusion as a knot tightens in her stomach.  Where could he be? She wonders, running her hand along the dusty wire rack in front of her.  It’s not like there’s anywhere for him to go in the small shop, and she would have heard if he left, or if he drove away.
“Harry?” She calls again, her steps slower now as worry fills her voice. “Where did you—fuck—!” Y/N screams as something grabs her from behind, its fingers digging into her sides harshly.  She whips around to find Harry standing over her, loud outbursts of laughter spilling from his strawberry pink mouth at the look on her face.
An indignant flush rushes over Y/N’s face. “You’re such an ass!” She hisses, gripping his shoulders and shoving his laughing frame away from her. “I swear, you’re like a five year old—”
“Did I worry you?” Harry snickers between his words, a wicked look of mischief alight in his dark green eyes. “Were you afraid something happened to me?”
Y/N’s cheeks burn with anger as she turns away from him, crossing her arms defiantly. “No.  I wish something had happened to you.  Then I wouldn’t have to deal with your immature antics.”
Harry’s lips stay quirked up in a smirk as he follows her, his voice falling into a singsong tone. “You were worried.” He insists, chuckles still rolling out of him every few moments. “I could tell.”
“Oh, fuck off.” Y/N snaps at him in an irritated voice. “Just pay for your stupid post card and let’s go.”
“I already did. There’s a sign on the desk saying the clerk is out for lunch, so I left some money.” Harry nods to the small desk in the corner with a few dollars left tucked under the dusty service bell. “I think that’ll cover it, yeah?”
“Whatever.” Y/N can’t resist shoving Harry one last time before walking towards the shop door. “That’s enough.  Let’s go. I want to make it to the motel before the storm hits.”
The nice thing about Grand Junction, Colorado, Y/N realizes, is that their motels have multiple single rooms available on short notice.  While she didn’t realize the importance of this fact before this trip started, having an evening of solitude and her own stable space away from Harry for the first time in two days is nothing short of a blessing.
When she gets inside her private motel room, which, while still shabby, is leagues above their previous motel, Y/N locks the door before breathing a sigh of relief.  Just the silence in the room is wonderful, and even though she knows Harry is right next door, having a wall between them is a luxury that she doesn’t take for granted.  When she showers, she doesn’t have to worry about being quick, or toweling off as fast as she can so she can get dressed inside the bathroom without Harry seeing. There’s no need to worry about anyone hearing Y/N sing quietly to herself under the (albeit weak) stream of the shower, nor is there an uncomfortable stick of her sports bra to her back caused by water droplets that she couldn’t reach in her hurry to dry off. And after her shower, with some of the knots from her back finally worked out, Y/N is able to stretch out on the double bed in the center of the room, her phone in her hand as she reaches for the takeout menus stacked on the bedside table.  She peruses the menus available before settling on Chinese takeout, and within five minutes, her order of a two entrée plate and fried rice is on its way.
Y/N sighs gently as she leans back on the pillows, wishing that she and Harry had stopped at a liquor store before coming to the motel.  She knows she could probably walk to one, but now that she’s showered and comfortable, the last thing she wants to do is wander around Grand Junction until she finds a bottle of Moscato.  Instead, Y/N flicks on the TV with a click of the ancient remote, and begins scrolling through the channels until she finds a rerun of Dirty Dancing that’s just starting.
An amused yet wry smile appears on Y/N’s lips.  It’s this movie’s fault that she and Harry are on an impromptu road trip, really. Jo and Laure both loved it, and were insistent that they had to get married at a resort in the Catskills similar to one from the film.  As her two friends cross her mind, Y/N settles into the sheets as Baby begins her narration, contemplating whether or not she should call Jo to check in.  Just as the thought pops into her head, however, the phone rings.
Y/N answers within a moment, not bothering to check the caller ID.  She and Jo had a strange habit of calling each other the moment the other thought of it, and when she raises her phone to her ear, she expects to hear her best friend’s familiar voice reply. “Hello?”
What voice she actually hears, however, surprises her. “Hey, Y/N.  I’m glad I got through.” Brant says easily, his voice crackling slightly through the speaker. “How are you?”
“Brant!” Y/N jerks up in bed in surprise, the remote falling from its perch on her stomach onto the sheets. “I—I’m fine.  How are you?”
“Oh, alright.  Just busy with work, but that’s the usual.” Y/N can practically picture the neutral expression on his face, and how he’d shrug his shoulders as he speaks. “How’s the road trip?  I can’t imagine driving for as long as you have to drive.”
“It’s…it’s alright, yeah.” Y/N speaks slowly as she puts her phone on speaker, balancing it on her knee while her hands begin to fidget with her rings. “Long, but not too bad.”
“Well, that’s good.” Brant clears his throat thickly, as if what he’s about to say makes him uncomfortable. “I miss you, though.  And our weekly dinners.”
A feeling of guilt washes over Y/N.  Truthfully, besides Harry’s inquisition on the first day of driving, Brant has barely crossed her mind.  Granted, he isn’t usually at the forefront of her mind while she’s in L.A., either, but for the last few days, her thoughts have been constantly consumed by the stress of making it to the wedding and her annoyance and frustration with Harry.  
“Y/N?” Brant’s voice crackles through her speaker again. “Are you there?
“I—yeah.” She says quickly, pulling herself from her thoughts. “Sorry, just—long day.  I’m tired.”
“I can imagine.” Brant says sympathetically, but there’s something in his tone that almost sounds patronizing. “Who are you driving with?  Have you been taking turns?”
Y/N pauses the fidgeting of her rings before snatching her phone from its balanced place on her knee. She quickly opens her messages and scrolls to her thread with Brant, searching through the text bubbles for a reminder of what she’d said to him.  Had she not told him that she was traveling with Harry?
Within a moment, Y/N confirms that she hadn’t.  All she had said was that she was getting a ride with someone.  Why had she done that, she wonders?  She’s sure she’s mentioned Harry in passing to Brant at least once.  When she talked about the wedding, probably.  As she thinks about it more, however…what had she told Brant about the wedding?  About Jo? How much does he actually know about her personal life?  Most of their dinner conversations revolve around work, or some book both of them have read.  Had the topic ever come up in detail?
“I’m, um, I’m driving with one of Laure’s friends.” Y/N brings the phone closer to her mouth as her other hand works its way to her mouth.  She begins to chew on a hangnail absentmindedly between her words, something she always does when her nerves begin to get to her.  She can’t count the number of times Jo has grasped her wrist and pulled her hand from her mouth to chastise her about the habit. “We’re…we’re in Colorado now.”
“Oh, Colorado.  That’s nice.” Brant says over the rustling of papers. “Listen, Y/N, I’ve got some work to get back to, but I’m glad we had this talk. I’ll call you again soon.”
“Uh, yeah.  Sure.  I’ll talk to you later.” Y/N nods, and then the line goes dead.  Out of curiosity, Y/N checks the length of the call.  The time 3:09 blinks back at her.
Tossing her phone back down on the covers, Y/N resumes her relaxed position in bed, despite being anything but relaxed after that phone call.  She should feel guilty, she thinks, for not telling Brant about Harry. But then again, what’s there to tell? She said she was getting a ride with one of Laure’s friends, and that’s true.  She hadn’t lied.  And even if Brant did know that the friend is Harry, why would he care?  It’s just Harry.  There’s no reason for Brant to be alarmed, because there’s nothing going on. And she and Brant…Y/N glances down at the call time again.  Things are different between them.  There’s…they’re comfortable as they are, she thinks.  They’re not dating, and they’re comfortable like that.  So there’s no reason to tell him about Harry, because there’s nothing to tell.  Nothing at all.
Y/N refocuses on the TV screen, where Patrick Swayze is dancing in a tight black tank top. Right.  Nothing to tell.
When Y/N leaves her motel room the next morning with her bag over her shoulder, Harry is already waiting by his car, leaning against the dusty black body with two coffee cups in his hands.  He’s dressed in another black t-shirt (Y/N wonders just how many identical copies of the same shirt Harry has) with usual jeans covering his long legs.  His curls are tied out of his face with a dark green bandana, and Y/N knows that if his eyes weren’t covered with his black sunglasses, the bandana would make them even brighter than they usually are.
“Hey.” Harry calls to her, extending a ringed hand that holds a coffee cup towards her as she walks over. “I got the coffee this morning.  You drink it black, right?”
Y/N nods as she takes the cup from him, careful not to brush over his fingers with her own. “Yeah. Thanks.”
“No problem.” Harry crosses around to the back of the car, opening the trunk with a turn of his key. “Here.” Harry holds out his free hand for Y/N’s bag, taking it from her and setting it down on top of the suitcases in the back. “I got it.”
Y/N regards Harry with a bemused look as she wraps both hands around her coffee cup. “Thanks?” She says again, more questioning this time as she looks at him strangely. “I can do that myself, you know.”
“I know.  I’m just trying to be polite.” Harry’s voice takes on its usual bite like he’s flipping a switch. “Is that alright with you, princess?”
Within a second, the familiar irritation with Harry returns to Y/N, and it’s almost comforting to snap back at him in a testy voice. “Don’t call me that.”
Harry snickers under his breath, and although the sound makes Y/N’s annoyance grow, she detects a different tone in it than a few days before.  Before she can place a finger on why it sounds different, however, Harry is climbing into the driver’s side of the car and starting the engine.
The two of them are silent as Harry finds his way back to the highway, and they stay in that silence for the first few hours of that day’s leg of the trip.  As the third hour begins to pass, Y/N is content listening to the throaty and captivating voice of Stevie Nicks fill the cab of the car. By the second chorus of the song, Y/N is humming along quietly, her foot tapping to the same beat that Harry’s fingers are spelling out against the steering wheel.  It’s comfortable, she thinks after a moment.  The silence between them.  It feels different than it did on their first day, when Y/N was questioning her choice to get into a car with Harry and commit to a 42 hour drive. The silence seems to be fueled more by comfort than tension.  It’s…refreshing.
A memory from the first day ignites in the back of her mind, a spark so bright and obvious that she can’t believe it took her so long to see it. “Stevie.” Y/N says suddenly, turning to Harry as a smile spreads over her face. “You named your car Stevie, as in Stevie Nicks?”
Harry laughs, his shoulders moving up and down beneath his black t-shirt from the motion.  One hand lifts from the steering wheel and points a finger gun at her. “Took you long enough.  I was wondering how many days you’d have to listen to my music to get it.”
Y/N gives his hand a light shove. “I was too distracted by the fact that you named your car.” She rolls her eyes, bringing her bottle of water to her lips for a short sip. “I still think it’s weird.”
“It gives her character.” Harry defends himself as he rubs a hand over the steering wheel absentmindedly. Y/N can see the mirth swirling around in his light irises. “A bit of personality.  Just because you don’t value personalities doesn’t mean anyone else doesn’t.”
“I don’t value personalities?” Turning in her seat to stare at Harry head on, Y/N raises an eyebrow in question. “What’s that supposed to mean?”
“Just your taste in men, that’s all.” Harry says it casually, like it really can just be a “that’s all” type of sentence.
Within a heart beat, the comfortable atmosphere in the car turns to ice as Y/N straightens in her seat, her spine tense, tightening every nerve in her body along with it. “What the fuck does that mean?”
When Harry glances at her again, his eyes darken, his guard going up as he senses the shift in Y/N’s tone. “Nothing, just…motel rooms have thin walls.” Harry mumbles, having the decency to keep his eyes on the road as his ears redden slightly. “And from what I overheard, Brant doesn’t exactly seem…stimulating.”
Y/N sputters indignantly for a moment, unable to form a coherent response as anger rises in her chest. “You—” She sucks in a quick breath that hits the back of her throat harshly. “You eavesdropped on me?”
Harry licks his lips once, clearing his throat once before answering.  The tapping of his fingers against the steering wheel has resumed, his nervousness apparent in his movements as well as his facial expressions. “Not on purpose.  I told you, the walls were thin.”
“So put in head phones!” Y/N exclaims, gripping her water bottle so tight that her fingers begin to strain in protest against the metal exterior.  She has half a mind to throw the bottle at Harry in her anger, barely able to talk herself down from the ledge of the idea.
Harry’s posture shifts in his seat as his shoulders square, and Y/N can practically see his defensive side emerge from within his chest. “It’s not like you two were having phone sex.” He rolls his eyes at the idea. “It was the most boring conversation in the world, and lasted, what, three minutes?  Makes you wonder how long he lasts in other ways, doesn’t it?”
“Stop the car.” Y/N’s voice is low and void of emotion as she replies, her body turned back forward in her seat.
“Am I wrong?  It’s not like you know for sure—”
Anger bubbles over in Y/N’s chest, cancelling out any rational thought she has inside her and leaving pure, unadulterated fury. “Stop the car, Harry!  Now!”
Harry half jumps in his seat when Y/N yells, and he quickly jerks the car to the side of the highway without so much as a turn signal.  Pulling her seatbelt off as he pulls over, Y/N is out the door before Harry can so much as put the car into neutral.  While her more rational mind would tell her that she has nowhere to walk to along a highway in Colorado as the sky darkens to an angry black above them, the only thing she’s thinking of is getting away from Harry.  Stupid, self-absorbed, ignorant, and rude Harry.
“Y/N—” The sound of Harry scrambling out of the car and slamming the door behind him pushes her to walk faster. “Y/N, come back—”
Y/N turns around on her heel fast and hard, heart pounding so fast that she thinks it might break through her ribs. “What is your problem?” She hisses, pointing an accusatory finger at him. “Why do you insist on being so—so nasty about him?  You don’t even know him!”
Harry freezes where he is as the wind whips his hair around his face, his bandana barely keeping the messy curls in place. “I don’t—” His speech falters, and he sucks in a sharp breath before continuing. “I don’t think I’m being…nasty.”
“Well, you are!” Y/N takes a deep breath in, placing her hands over her stomach as it expands with air.  It’s a trick that Jo taught her back in high school, as a way to ground herself to her body. Feeling the movement of air in and out of her lungs helps calm her, even if by just a fraction. “Brant is just—he’s someone I’m talking to.  We’ve gone on dates, but we’re not dating, and even though we’re not dating, that doesn’t mean that you can insinuate things about him, or eavesdrop on our private conversations!”
Harry’s jaw tenses as he listens to Y/N speak, waiting until she’s finished her speech to respond in a harsh and clipped tone. “I already told you, I didn’t mean to eavesdrop. And I’m teasing you.  It’s supposed to be a joke.  Isn’t that what friends do?”
“But we’re not friends, Harry.” Y/N’s voice is flat, the fury in her tone replaced with a hollow emptiness. “We’re not friends.  I don’t need you teasing me about a boy like we’re buddies, or whatever, because we’re not.”
Although Harry opens his mouth to respond, no words cross over the edges of his pink lips.  His jaw tightens even more as he closes his mouth again, and Y/N can see a million things flitting through his green irises, which are getting darker by the moment.  Y/N’s not certain if the darkness is from her words, or the black sky rolling above them that’s sapping the light of day from the atmosphere, and she’s not sure if she can take the answer either way.  Part of her knows that maybe—just maybe—she’s blown this whole thing out of proportion, and maybe she should examine why Harry making fun of Brant bothers her like it does.  It’s not like she’s unaware of his shortcomings, she thinks, but then she wonders why she’s now seeing them as shortcomings, when a week ago, she saw them as positives.  Y/N never has to worry about Brant being too much for her, or forgetful, or scatterbrained—he’s organized, and secure, and stable, and that’s what she likes.  It’s always been what she likes.
Harry’s delayed response tears Y/N from her thoughts. “Not friends.  Got it.” He mutters, rubbing his hand over his stubbled and taut cheeks. “Just get back in the car, then.  Let’s go.”
“Hello!  My name is Gracie, I’ll be your server today.” The waitress in the tiny diner smiles at Harry and Y/N, a notepad in one hand and a half filled coffee pot in the other. “Can I get you guys anything to start?”
“Coffee.” Harry and Y/N speak at the same time, each person’s eyes flickering to the other before looking away.  Y/N keeps her eyes focused on her off-white ceramic coffee cup as Gracie fills it, refusing to make eye contact with Harry again.
The last hour has been almost unbearable.  After they got back in the car, Harry had turned off his playlist, and for the first time since the road trip had begun, true silence had fallen between them. Y/N had thought she would like it, but truthfully, it had been the worst thing she’d ever heard.  Every few minutes, she’d hear Harry shift, or sigh, or tap a tense finger against the gear shift, and she wished that she could say something, but she didn’t.  She couldn’t.  She’d been grateful when he wordlessly exited the highway and parked in front of a diner, as the conversations of stopped truck drivers and the clatter of a kitchen was a good distraction from their argument.
A movement in the corner of her eye catches her attention, and Y/N glances up just enough to watch Harry slip a pat of butter into his coffee, stirring the contents of the cup with his spoon until it’s melted together.  She wrinkles her nose in disgust, and almost opens her mouth to make a comment (“Really, Harry?  Just add milk like a regular person, instead of drinking a cup of grease.”), but bites it back before it can fall off her tongue.  They’re not exactly in the position to make quips to each other, she thinks, especially after she told him that they weren’t friends.
Which they’re not. They’ve never been friends; that fact isn’t exactly news.  Not getting along has been Harry and Y/N’s signature since the day they first met. So why is there a pit in Y/N’s stomach that gets deeper every time Harry looks away from her?
The click of heels alerts Y/N of Gracie’s returned presence before her voice does. “Have you two decided what you’d like to eat?”
“I’ll have a turkey club, please, on whole wheat bread.” Harry folds up his plastic menu carefully. “And a glass of water on the side.”
Gracie nods, taking the menu from him before turning her eyes to Y/N. “And for yourself?”
“Um—” Y/N had barely glanced at the menu, too lost in her thoughts to think about it. “I’ll just have a burger, please.  And a water, as well.”
Gracie nods as she writes down the order, taking Y/N’s menu and giving the pair one last smile before disappearing to the kitchen.  A fresh wave of silence falls between Harry and Y/N as each of them sips their coffee, both of them doing their best not to look at the person sitting across from them.
Y/N’s best, however, is not up to her usual standard, as she can’t stop herself from stealing a few quick glances while Harry looks out the window.  He hasn’t shaved in a couple days, she notices, as the stubble on his cheeks and chin is even darker than it was the day before.  There’s a permanent crease between his eyebrows, his face as tense as she’s ever seen it, and a darkness over his whole expression overall. It’s like there’s a new wall up between the two of them, and Y/N’s never felt more detached from him.  Which, honestly, is saying something.
She’s looking back down at her own half empty coffee when Harry finally speaks a few minutes later, his voice just as tense as his expression.
“Shit.” He says in a low voice, and then the next sound Y/N hears is that of someone ruffling through pockets.  
She looks up to see Harry doing just that, his hands digging through the outer pockets of his army green jacket. “What?” She asks, her curiosity outweighing her need to continue the silent treatment. “What is it?”
“I had the vows in my—my pocket, but they’re—” Harry jams his hands inside a pocket sewn into the lining of his jacket, and Y/N watches as his face visibly relaxes. “Oh, thank God. I thought they fell out.”
Harry removes his hand from his pocket, two folded up notes clutched within his hand.  Each one is labeled carefully, one with Jo written in Laure’s neat penmanship, and the other with Laure scribbled in Jo’s quick writing.  
Y/N recognizes the papers immediately.  It’s easy, really, considering the amount of time she spent helping Jo rewrite draft after draft of the same sentiments. “You have Jo and Laure’s vows?” She questions, her eyebrows raising in surprise. “Why?”
“The same reason you have their wedding bands.” Harry shrugs as he turns the papers over in his careful fingers, making sure not to crease them. “They forgot them.”
A small smile plays on the edge of Y/N’s lips at the memory of her forgetful friends. “Right.  Of course.”
Harry’s eyes flicker to Y/N’s mouth at the sign of movement, and he tugs his bottom lip between his teeth before responding. “Want to take a look?”
“At their vows?” Y/N looks around, as if someone could be watching and monitoring them. “I—that doesn’t seem right.”
“Fine.  Then don’t look at them.” Harry says easily, setting the note labeled Laure on the table between them.  His nimble fingers unfold the paper labeled with Jo’s name as his green irises begin to scan across the sheet. “I’ll read them.”
It only takes a few seconds of watching Harry read over the words for Y/N to crack. “Wait.” She brings her thumb to her mouth, chewing anxiously on her cuticle as Harry quirks an eyebrow at her. “Will you read them to me?”
When she asks, Harry spends so long staring at her that Y/N thinks he’ll refuse.  His jade eyes meet hers with an intensity that almost makes her flinch, but Y/N holds his stare, refusing to be the first to back down. Finally, after what seems like an eternity, Harry gives a sharp nod, looking down at the note before he starts to read from the beginning.
“‘My darling Jo’,” He begins, his voice soft and low, his accent thick. “‘It seems so strange that this day is finally here.  I feel like we’ve been building up to it ever since the day we first met, and yet it’s always seemed so far away.  When I was a little girl, I always’…” Harry trails off as his eyes continue to move across the words, and he clears his throat before attempting to continue to read aloud. “‘I always thought that there was something wrong with me.  I thought that the things that I felt, and the way that I loved, was dirty.  I thought it was wrong.  I thought that—that I was going against God, and against nature, and that I was going to be punished for it.  And then I met you’.”
Harry pauses to take a sip of his coffee, and Y/N does the same.  There’s a shine beginning to appear in his eyes, and Y/N recognizes it as the beginning of tears because she feels the same thing brimming in her own eyes. She feels a bit guilty for reading the vows, but reasons that it’s for the best.  If she were to hear them for the first time at the wedding, she doesn’t think she’d be able to keep it together.
“‘The moment I met you, I knew that the way I loved could never be wrong, or be dirty, because I was loving you’.” Harry’s accent grows thicker the more he reads, and although Y/N hasn’t seem Harry in many different emotional states, she can tell that this is a sign of how the vows are affecting him. “‘Being with you could never be wrong, and God could never get mad at me for it, because only God could create someone as perfect as you.  I promise to love you when you wake me up at 3 A.M. because you’ve stolen all the blankets, and I promise to love you at 6 P.M. when you almost burn down our apartment while trying to cook for me.  I promise to support you through everything, listen to your stories, and watch in wonder as you make a difference in this world.  I promise to never let my anger get the best of me, and to always give you the benefit of the doubt.  I promise to love every version of yourself that you grow into, just as I’ve loved all the versions you once were.  I promise to love you in every way humanly possible, and even in ways that aren’t humanly possible.  I promise to love, period.  I’—” Harry’s voice cracks, and he glances up at Y/N as he clears his throat to continue. “‘I love you’.”
Y/N doesn’t realize just how emotional listening to Harry read Laure’s vows has made her until the first tear wells over the corner of her eye.  She turns her head towards the window to wipe it away as quickly and inconspicuously as possible, but from the way Harry is looking at her when she turns back around, she knows that he caught what she was doing.
“That, um—” Now it’s Y/N’s turn to attempt to clear the emotion from her throat. “Wow.”
Harry carefully folds Laure’s vows back up, taking extra care to re-crease the paper exactly how it had been folded. “I didn’t know she…felt like that.” Harry says after a moment, his voice quiet. “Like she was…wrong.”
Y/N, unsure of what to say, just nods while reaching for Jo’s vows in front of her.  Like Harry, she takes great care when unfolding the paper, smoothing it gently between her hands. “I’ll read Jo’s, then?”
Harry nods as he takes a sip of his water. “Sure.”
Y/N licks her lips once, wetting them with what little saliva she has in her mouth before beginning. “‘Laure’,” She starts, emotion already rising up to form a lump in her throat. “‘I don’t even know where to begin.  I’ve tried to write down all the ways I love you a million different times, but I can never seem to find the right words.  The problem is, I don’t think that there is a big enough word to describe what I feel for you.  ‘Love’ is only four letters, and four letters is just not enough to contain everything I feel.  ‘Adoration’ is nine letters, but even that doesn’t come close.  I think the best way I can describe it is ‘permanent’.” Y/N pauses her reading to take a long gulp of water, the coolness soothing the dry and parched feeling in her mouth and throat. “‘Anyone who knows me knows that I have trouble committing.  The idea of having something forever, of being in one place, normally terrifies me. But the idea of having you forever, and being in one place with you forever…that’s all I want.  I want us to be permanent to each other.  Even when we struggle, and we will struggle, I know that we won’t fall apart.  Committing to you isn’t any trouble.  It’s as easy as breathing.  I’m sure of you, and I’m sure of us.  I love you, permanently.  I’ll love you when you’re sick and gross, and I’ll love you when you’re old with a bad hip.” A small laugh falls out of Y/N’s mouth before she continues. “I’ll love you when you haggle at flea markets for the best prices, and I’ll love you when you do something so stupid that it makes me want to tear my hair out.  I love you permanently, and I want all of our family and friends to witness me saying that.  I’ll never back out, or bail, or run away from you.  You’re the one thing in my life that’s never felt hard. You’re my home base, and my north star, and you bring me back down to Earth whenever I need it.  I love you permanently, Laure.  I’ll never stop’.”
As she finishes reading, Y/N folds the paper back up, wiping her eyes on the back of her hand before grabbing the other note sitting on the table.  She pushes them towards Harry, her misty eyes unable to meet his. “Here. Put these away again, somewhere safe.”
Harry takes the vows from her, slipping them back inside his inner jacket pocket for safekeeping. “It’s probably—” He clears his throat once more, and Y/N knows that the vows have caught him in his chest just as they’ve caught her. “It’s probably good that we read them now, so that we’re…prepared for the ceremony.”
“Yeah.” Y/N wraps her hands around her coffee mug, the warm ceramic surface heating her cold fingers. “You’re right.  They really…love each other.”
Harry taps his fingers against the table top, a concentrative and thoughtful expression on his face.  His eyebrows are knit together above his stormy green eyes, and his pink tongue swipes over his pinker lips once before he speaks. “You know, Laure is my closest friend.  I don’t want her to get hurt.”
Immediately registering the tone of Harry’s voice, Y/N’s head snaps up, her own eyes becoming stormy as they meet his own. “Jo would never hurt Laure.” Y/N says defensively, the hairs on the back of her neck pricking up at even the suggestion of her friend hurting someone. “Didn’t you hear her vows?  I’ve never heard her sound so sure of something in her entire life.”
Harry’s jaw flexes at the cadence of Y/N’s voice, and his is just as agitated when he responds. “I’m just saying, if anything ever happened—”
“And I’m just saying, it won’t.” The tension between them doubles as Y/N shoots Harry an icy glare. “Do you just look for the worst in people?  Is that all you do?”
“You think I look for the worst in people?  Really?” Harry barks out a harsh laugh, pressing one hand flat against the table as the other fixes his bandana. “Christ, if that’s what you think of me—”
“Why would I think anything else?” Y/N asks incredulously, tilting her head to the side as she regards him. “All you’ve shown me is—”
“Alright, I have the turkey club on whole wheat, and the burger here.” Gracie appears suddenly to Y/N’s right, her tray loaded with food. “Here you guys are…” She sets the plates down in front of Harry and Y/N, her gaze darting between them nervously as she reads the tension in the booth. “Is…there anything else I can get you two?”
“No.” Harry’s voice is hard. “We don’t need anything else.”
By the time Harry pulls the car into a motel just off the highway in Lexington, Nebraska, all Y/N wants is a moment alone.  The strained atmosphere during that day’s drive had been unbearable, and between the anxiety from her confrontation with Harry and the sound of thunder beginning in the distance, Y/N just needs some space to herself to relax and calm down.
Of course, just because that’s what she needs, doesn’t mean that she’s going to get it.  When Harry returns back to the car with a single key in his hand and a sour look on his face, Y/N knows for sure that the universe is against her.
This room, at least, she’s pleased to find, has two actual beds, which are pushed up against the wall perpendicular to the door with a small night table between them.  However, that’s where her pleasure stops, as the click of Harry turning the lock behind her just reminds her that she’s trapped in here, with no chance to get away from Harry, the oncoming storm, or any one of her problems that have developed over the last four days.  The reality of the situation hits her all at once, and it takes all of Y/N’s self control to toss her bag on the bed and walk brusquely to the bathroom, slamming the door and locking it behind her before she allows herself to show a sign of her emotions.
The rest of the evening passes in silence.  She showers before changing into her sports bra and boxers, but the amount of exposed skin sends a vulnerable shiver down her spine.  Y/N opts for pulling a sweatshirt over her body, and then sets herself the task of braiding her hair to distract herself.  After that’s done, she busies herself with her skincare routine, taking up as much time as she can in the bathroom before she absolutely has to leave its private interior.
Harry, however, seems to want to see as little of Y/N as she wants to see of him, and pushes past her to enter the bathroom the moment that she steps out of it.  His routine, it seems, is designed to take up just as much time as hers was, because by the time Harry exits the bathroom, the scent of his shampoo trailing behind him, Y/N is already tucked under the covers of her bed, although she’s far from asleep.
In the time it took for her to shower and get ready for bed, the storm had picked up, and the only thing audible in the room was the sound of rain pelting against the roof and window, the wind howling through the trees, and Y/N’s shallow, uneven breaths. She wraps the sheets tightly around herself, pulling them taut to her chin with clenched fists that tighten every time a clap of thunder echoes through the room.  Although she’s turned to face the wall, away from Harry, she can hear his footsteps pause as he gets a glimpse of her shivering form beneath the blankets, and she does her best to will herself to appear asleep.  Breathing in as deeply as her tight chest will allow her, Y/N attempts to even her breathing, forcing her shoulders rise and fall in a way that appears natural and normal.  But all it takes is one clap of thunder for the controlled motion to go out the window.
“Y/N…” Harry’s voice is low, but despite its raspy cadence, it lacks the rough edge that it had earlier. The bed behind her squeaks, signalling that Harry’s taken a seat on the edge of it. “Are you—?”
“I-I’m fine.” Y/N says quickly, pulling the sheets tighter to her chin as another shiver rolls through her body. “Go to sleep.”
There’s another creak of Harry’s bed, and Y/N imagines him climbing under the starched linen covers, his damp curls flopping into his eyes as he lays back on the lumpy motel pillow. The image is almost enough to distract her until there’s another clap of thunder.  The sound seems to shake the motel room, and Y/N can’t stop the small whimper that leaves her lips as her body jumps in response.
“When I was a little kid, my mum took my sister and I to the fair every year.”
Harry’s deep voice cuts over the rain, and Y/N shifts in her bed, turning over to face him.  She keeps the covers pulled up to her chin, but readjusts herself so that she can keep her head on her pillow while looking Harry in the eye. “What?” She asks, confusion audible in her quiet tone.
Harry shifts himself as she does, continuing to move down until he’s completely horizontal, with one hand tucked under his pillow as he speaks. “My mum took my sister and I to the fair.  It came to Holmes Chapel every spring, and there were always rides, and games to play, and so many things to see.  It drew crowds from nearby villages every year, really big crowds, and my mum always held my hand tightly so I wouldn’t get lost.”
“I don’t understand, what—” Another clap of thunder shakes the room, making Y/N flinch halfway through her sentence.
“You’re okay.” Harry says immediately, his calm jade eyes focused on her as the reassurance slips from his mouth.  He waits a moment, gauging Y/N’s body language and waiting for his examination to be positive before resuming his story. “So…my mum always told me not to wander off, but when I was six, I did.  I saw some older kids playing games that I wanted to play, and Gemma was busy playing some sort of game with a ball—I can’t really remember what—and when my mum turned her back, I ran off.”
Y/N’s about to open her mouth to ask why he’s telling her the story when the answer clicks into place in her head.  She thinks back to the conversation in the car the day before, how she told Harry that it helps when someone talks to her to distract her from the thunder.  That’s what he’s doing, she realizes, as she forces herself to focus on his quiet and level voice.  He’s trying to keep her calm, even after everything she said and did today.
“I don’t look like it now,” A small smile flits across Harry’s blushed lips. “But I was pretty scrawny back then.  And all the people around me were so tall, my eyes were barely level with their hips. Everyone was rushing around, going in all directions, and I kept calling for my mum, but she couldn’t hear me.  No one stopped to help me.  I felt like I was…trapped.  Like it was a huge forest of legs, running all around me, circling me, and I couldn’t get out.  I was probably only gone for five minutes, but to a six year old, it felt like an eternity.  And just something about it…I don’t know.  It changed me.  I still don’t like crowds because of that day.”
Y/N’s shoulders unclench the slightest bit as another gust of wind blows against the window. “That must have been scary.”
Harry’s own shoulders lift in a slight shrug as he shifts the sheet to cover him more. “It was. But I can’t change it.  I just have to deal with the repercussions of it. That’s all a fear is, really.  A side effect.  We just have to deal with them as best we can.”
More thunder booms loudly outside, but Y/N manages to keep her flinch to a minimum, despite her hands curling into fists again under the covers. “Harry…” She whispers his name into the darkness between them, his outline barely visible save for his green eyes. “I’m—I’m sorry about today.”
Harry shakes his head, his damp hair rubbing against his pillow. “You don’t have to apologize.” He whispers back, his tone as gentle as she’s ever heard it. “I was an arse.  I shouldn’t have pushed the topic.”
“I shouldn’t have been so uptight about it.” Rubbing her eyes with one fist, Y/N lets out a low sigh. “I felt so shitty all day because of our fight.  I’ve never…none of our fights have ever made me feel like that.”
“Maybe it’s because…” Harry’s tentative voice trails off, his eyes flickering to the ground for a brief moment before staring back at Y/N nervously. “I don’t know.  I thought we were getting along better.  For a moment, at least.”
“We were.” Y/N’s teeth tug on her bottom lip, and she feels a sudden shyness overcome her at the admission. “I’m sorry I said that we…weren’t friends.  I think…I don’t know.  I’ve been stubborn for so long, but I can see now that you’re different than I thought you were.”
“Yeah.  Me too.  I was wrong, too.” Harry runs a hand through his damp curls, a soft laugh leaving his mouth. “How did we even end up like this?  I barely remember what made us hate each other so much in the beginning.”
“Seriously?” Y/N raises an eyebrow, barely peaking out from beneath the sheets as another clap of thunder sounds. “You don’t remember?”
Harry mimics her expression. “Do you?”
“Yes!  It was the very first night we met.  We had that double date with Laure and Jo.” Shifting beneath her covers, Y/N moves herself into a better position on her side, so she can be more comfortable while still maintaining eye contact with Harry. “And you were rude, and made inappropriate jokes, and you left in the middle of the date to go chat up a sorority girl!”
“Wait a minute, no!” Harry protests the memory, half sitting up in his bed as he speaks. “That’s not what happened!”
“Yes, it is!” A small laugh falls off Y/N’s lips at his indignant reaction. “I remember it perfectly!”
“No, you remember it wrong!” Although a flush creeps up Harry’s neck, there’s an amused smile playing on his lips, a tiny hint of a dimple just barely appearing in his visible cheek. “I was making jokes to try and break the ice, which didn’t work on the Ice Queen, it seems—” Harry motions to Y/N teasingly. “And you’re the one who started talking to some bloke before I started talking to that girl!”
Another clap of thunder echoes through the room, but Y/N hardly notices as she thinks back to the night they met, and who Harry could possibly be referring to. “A bloke—?  He was a classmate of mine!  I had to talk to him!”
“Yeah, well, you didn’t have to enjoy it so much.” Harry grumbles, crossing his muscled arms over his sheets. “I had been so excited when Laure said she had an American girl for me, and then—”
“You were excited?” Y/N asks, her voice laced with surprise. “Really?”
The flush on Harry’s neck works its way to the apples of his cheeks. “Well, yeah.” He mumbles the words as his eyes drop from Y/N’s, slipping both hands beneath his head. “She said that you were funny, intelligent, witty, beautiful—”
“And then you met me, and realized that it was all a lie?” Y/N finishes for him, rolling her eyes in the darkness.
“No.” Harry gives a small shake of his head as his body shifts, the motel bed creaking under his weight. “No, she wasn’t wrong.  You were all of those things.  But I wasn’t, and it seemed like…I don’t know.  Like you didn’t think I was good enough for you.  I couldn’t keep your attention.”
The teasing smile slips from Y/N’s face as she registers Harry’s words. “You thought that I thought you weren’t…good enough?”
The nervousness is clear in Harry’s voice now, even over the pounding of rain against the window. “That’s what it seemed like, yeah.”
“I never—I didn’t think that.” Y/N says slowly, managing to relax her body beneath the sheets as she keeps her focus on the memory of meeting Harry. “I wasn’t exactly thrilled to be there, but that’s because Jo set the date up without telling me.  I thought you were handsome, and I liked your accent, but then you started to act weird, and you started flirting with that girl, so I thought you were an ass.”
“You still think I’m an arse, princess, be honest.” The teasing tone replaces the nerves, and for once, Harry’s joke has the intended affect on Y/N.  When she rolls her eyes again, it’s more playful, and the same tone is in her voice when she responds.
“I told you, don’t call me princess.” She replies, running her teeth over her lip gently. “So…I guess we both kind of fucked up that day.”
“Yeah.” Harry nods, a sheepish smile playing over his red lips. “I guess so.”
“Can we just restart?” Y/N’s voice is small when she asks the question, barely audible over the sounds of the storm raging outside. “Like, all the way from the beginning. No more grudges, no more yelling. Even if it’s just for this trip, for Jo and Laure—”
“It doesn’t have to be just for this trip.” Harry cuts in, his eyes catching Y/N’s again. “We’re going to have to be around each other for a long time.  It’ll be a lot easer if we get along.”
Y/N nods in agreement, tugging down her covers to extend one arm towards Harry.  She makes a fist, holding out just her pinkie finger to him with half a grin on her face. “Truce?”
The space between their beds is small, and Harry’s long arm easily makes it across the no man’s land to meet Y/N’s pinkie with his own.  He loops it together with a smile that matches hers, tired and content and just at the edge of a humble new beginning.  Harry’s response is almost inaudible as thunder booms loudly outside the room, but Y/N can still pick out the cadence of his accent under the noise.
(pt II)
7K notes · View notes
briennesjaime · 2 years ago
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So love and dating? I love to read about it, and it's fun to write about and to think about in my head, but... when it's real... What, it's scary? Yeah. Why? Why is that scary? 'Cause the more people that you let into your life, the more that can just walk right out.
6K notes · View notes
luvknow · 2 years ago
hero’s soup for the weak soul | lee felix
genre: superhero!felix x civilian!reader | superhero au ; friends-to-lovers au ; college au ; fluff ; light humor ; light angst ; swearing ; alcohol consumption summary: you find yourself stuck trying to get your friendship with a flaky felix back to what it used to be. on the way, you meet a strange and familiar friend who happens to be a superhero. did I mention he's kind of hot? wc: 11.8k
“Hey,” you said, shaking an incredibly unconscious Felix. “Wake up.”
He was so knocked out that his body moved as if he were dead, and honestly, he might as well have been - he looked all beat up from God knows what. There were always small cuts and bruises on exposed parts of his skin that either seemed to never heal or he just kept on getting injured in those places, but they were never too major for you to ever worry about. After he kept on giving you the same excuse of saying how he’s just really clumsy, you truly believed it. By now, you couldn’t keep count of how many times he’s tripped and broken your coffee mugs.
A tired, barely-audible groan came from the boy as he pulled his blanket over his head.
“I’m not here,” he muttered. “How did you even get in?”
“Bro, we have midterms in a couple of weeks and you’ve been to like, five lectures! I bet you haven’t even started studying yet. And Jisung never locks the door.”
“You have my iClicker. You know what to do.”
“iClickers won’t save you from an F on the midterm.”
“Ugh, why do you have to be such an honor student?”
“To make up for your lack of diligence. Now come on ~” you whined, pulling on his arm gently.
With an unfamiliar strong force, Felix tugged you down so hard that you fell on top of him in his twin-sized bed. Was he always this strong!? Maybe he wasn’t kidding when he said he’s been going to the gym. He held your arm close to his chest, like a child to his teddy bear, and if Jisung were to walk in on you two right at this moment, it would look like you were the big spoon. Felix knew how awkward you could get with skinship, no matter how long you both knew each other, and he hoped you’d get flustered enough that you’d forget the whole reason you came here.
“L-Let go, you weirdo,” you stuttered nervously.
“No, I’m cold and you’re warm.”
“Then turn on your heat for once!”
“Does it look like Jisung and I can afford that? C’mon, you never wanna cuddle ~”
With a heavy sigh and a bright blush on your cheeks, you pulled yourself free from Felix and headed towards the front door feeling defeated. At least you tried to get him to go to class, right? Hopefully today’s lecture wouldn’t be so bad or information-heavy, but the last few times were and you can confidently say that you’ve never wrote down so many notes in your entire college career until now.
After leaving his and Jisung’s bedroom, you heard a heavy thud come from said-room which you assumed was Felix stumbling and falling out of bed to catch you before you left.
“Wait, I was kidding! I’m coming, let me just put some pants on…”
“You pulled me in your bed and you weren’t wearing pants!?” you shrieked, completely appalled and embarrassed.
“Relax, I had my boxers on.”
Felix came out of his room wearing his favorite black hoodie that covered his unruly bedhead with his favorite sweatpants. It was his go-to look whenever he wasn’t feeling like he was on top of the world, and lately it seemed like he wasn’t because you saw this outfit way too often for it to be hygienic. At first you thought his repeat of this specific outfit was just plain disgusting and lazy and you refused to wear the hoodie anytime he offered it to you whenever you were cold, but on one unbearable night, while walking home from your favorite place to eat on the other side of town, you took the hoodie to wear. You remembered how soft and warm it was and how it was doused in Felix’s cologne that only added to the boyishness of it. You almost didn’t give him back his hoodie.
“Listen, I know I look good, but you don’t need to stare,” Felix teased, walking past you to the door.
“I’m only staring because I’m wondering when was the last time you washed your clothes.”
“Not that it’s any of your business, but two days ago, thank you very much.”
“Wow, I’m impressed - you’re really sticking to your word. Now only if you did the same whenever you talked about studying.”
“Me staying true to my word about my outfits versus my studying habits are totally independent of each other! One gives me clout and the other just reminds me about my crippling student debt.”
“How did you get admitted into college…”
“You did my essays, remember?”
Class was no different than if you just left Felix behind at his place. He covered his face with his hood, pulled the strings, and went right back to sleep, leaving you to take responsibility for his iClicker and notes for re-teaching him later. You always knew Felix was one to stay up late to play video games or watch his nerd shows and it never worried you before, but now you can’t remember the last time you’ve been with him and he’s been conscious for more than four hours at a time. It was like he completely flipped his sleep schedule and there was no way that he did that just by playing games, right? But who knows, Felix was a special kind of nerd.
During your lunch break with Felix, you noticed how he struggled to keep his eyes open even after his third cup of coffee. He looked like a little kid who insisted he wasn’t tired even when his head was bobbing back and forth. You felt like his babysitter, but if you had to describe your relationship in a nutshell, ‘baby and babysitter’ was the gist of it.
“What is up with you lately?” you asked after flicking his forehead.
“What do you mean?” he muttered.
“You’re up really late, you’re always tired, and you have all of these cuts and bruises on your arms, like what the hell is this?”
Gently, your hand took the arm he used to support his head and pulled the sleeves of his hoodie down, exposing the browning spots and healing gashes. You may not have been one for skinship, but when it came to something as serious as this, of course you would show some concern and want to take a closer look. Felix shivered when your thumbs grazed over the tender spots and yanked his arm away.
“For the last time, there’s no need to worry, ok ~?” he sang lightly, hopefully it would ease your mind even just a little. Worried that you might suspect something, he pulled his arm back to his chest. “Who even are you, my mom?”
“I might as well be. You can’t cook for shit.”
“I cook sometimes!”
“Name one thing.”
“Anyone can make rice! A toddler could make rice!!”
“Hey, there’s a lot of factors that play into making rice! Like grain-to-water ratio, what kind of brand,  the species - it’s not easy stuff.”
“That’s what the instructions on the bag are for.”
“Wait… there’s instructions?”
“It’s amazing how natural selection takes its time on some species.”
Felix’s phone buzzed for the hundredth time within that hour. You’re not sure what it’s about or who he’s talking to, but this was happening too often lately that you were dying to know what the deal was. At first you suspected it was his parents, but they were chill and they usually left him alone to make and figure out his own mistakes in college, so they couldn’t have been bothering him, especially at this early hour. Maybe he was talking to someone, like someone he met at a party or one of the guys hooked him up, but that couldn’t be it, either - he would have told you right away and proceeded to tell you way too many details about what went down that night. Or who knows, maybe he is hiding someone from you, but you couldn’t figure out what the reason would be.
Either way, this person was really cutting into your Felix time for the past month or so and you were beginning to feel irritated.
“Hi hello, I’m still here,” you pouted, waving a hand in front of his strained face.
Almost immediately, he put his phone down and covered his scowl with his loving smile. “Ah, sorry, this person has been bothering me all day.”
“Who is it?”
“My boss.”
“Your boss? You have a job?!”
“Oh, I didn’t tell you? Yeah, I got that internship like a month ago. That’s why I’ve been so sleepy lately, I work really late and underpaid hours.”
“Why didn’t you tell me? I thought you found someone to replace me, or something.”
“Aw, do you miss hanging out with me twenty-four seven ~?” he teased while his fingers danced on your arms. “_____ misses me ~”
“Shut up, I do not.”
“You know, you’ll never have to worry about that kind of stuff.”
“Oh, yeah? Why’s that.”
“Because no one could ever replace you,” he said sincerely.
Another blush crept up on your cheeks. “I guess I’m stuck with you, huh?”
“Yup! You’re stuck with me forever, my love.”
“Gross, don’t say that…”
“My little cupcake.”
“My strawberry-flavored Poptart -”
“Ok, bye,” you gagged, getting up from your seat.
“Wait, come back! We didn’t plan what we’re doing for dinner yet!”
“We literally just ate lunch, you fatass, how can you even think about dinner? Besides, don’t you have some matters to attend to?” you asked while pointing at the glowing cellphone in his hands.
“Oh right, that…” For a few moments, you watched him bite his lip and consider his options. He could report to Woojin now like he was asked, but moments with you were rare these days. He’s been so busy working lately that it’s a wonder why you’re not more upset about it. You were always so patient with him, and for that, he was grateful. He shook his head. “It’s ok, he’ll understand.”
“No come on, dude, don’t get on his bad side so soon.”
“No, he’s cool! He’s texting me so much because we just started playing this really cool game and we’ve been giving each other tips and tricks and stuff. He’s really into it right now, so he’s texting nonstop. I promise you, it’s fine,” he reassured, swinging his arm around your shoulder, hoping you’d believe the lie. “Right now is _____ time and it’s precious time that shouldn’t be wasted.”
“If you say so. You’re so soft, it’s disgusting.”
“Only for you, sugarplum.”
“You’re late. Again.”
It’s now midnight, hours after Felix dropped you home and just after he woke up from a nap to recharge. He was as awake as he would be if he were operating on a regular sleep schedule like a regular person, but he was a superhero college kid, so regular and normal were not words in his vocabulary.
Felix walked into Woojin’s apartment not bothered by his scolding from his fancy leather couch. He was doing HIM a favor, why was he always so grumpy and needy of his time? It wasn’t like they had any deadlines to meet or anything.
“Well, I’m here, right?”
“Just put on the suit,” Woojin said, tossing Felix the newest version of his suit.
“Ooh, it’s all black? What happened to the blue?”
“You looked like Sharkboy last time, so I figured you’d look cooler in all black.” Woojin looked up and down at his loyal test subject. “I’m not so sure it’ll work, though.”
“You’re so funny, Hyung...”
Felix wasted no time putting on his new aerodynamic form-fitting suit. In the mirror, there’s a mask that wrapped around and outlined his eyes, barely covering half of his face. It was like their only function was to hide his freckles. Really, it was crazy how no one recognized him in the streets before, but now there was absolutely no way anyone could because this new suit changed every strand of hair on his head to black.
“Whoa, this is new! How does this work?” Felix asked, pointing to his hair.
“They’re the same fibers in your suit, but they wrap around your hair strands,” Woojin smirked, satisfied with his creation. “Cool, huh? That took me DAYS to figure out. I even called Jeongin for help. They pretty much serve the same functions - it’s waterproof, fireproof, and bulletproof.”
“So…it’s a helmet?”
“Cool!” he squealed. Then he began turning and getting all the good angle views in one of the huge mirrors. “Bro, I look so sexy. I’m diggin’ this for real, I’m gonna be the flyest superhero on campus!”
“But don’t all superheroes fly…?”
“No, that’s not what I - forget it, you’re too old.” Woojin chucked one of his very expensive silk pillows at a very poor Felix. He’ll never get over how rich that man was, spending it on pillows more expensive than Felix’s rent. He was at least smart to spend it on projects like these rather than nights out at the club, but Woojin always had some questionable purchases.
“So is this what I’m testing tonight?” Felix asked while closely examining the technology of his suit.
“Yup. Just fly around, press buttons, save a stolen purse - you know the drill. How does it fit?”
“Honestly, it’s like I’m naked. Fits like a glove! It’s form-fitting, insulating, and my butt looks absolutely fantastic! I swear, you outdo yourself every time.”
“That’s just what geniuses with a lot of money do. I’m like Tony Stark, right?”
“Ha! Good one.”
“Just get to work, you’re not getting paid to look at yourself.”
“If only, huh?” Felix joked, but Woojin was having none of it. “All right, I’m going! Just open your balcony.”
Woojin slid open the door to his balcony on the thirty-second floor. It was no wonder Minho wouldn’t partake in the testing - Felix couldn’t even see the floor below! Luckily he had like, zero fear, anyways. Well, zero fear of heights.
With one leg over the fence, he waved to his boss. “If I die, delete my browser history.”
“I’ll think about it.”
Felix rolled his eyes before he tipped over the edge, falling into what seemed like oblivion. No matter how many times he falls, he doesn’t think he’ll ever tire of the feeling of falling freely. It was an adrenaline high he was addicted to, which was one of the reasons why Woojin wanted Felix to be his test subject.
“Whoo hoo!!!” Felix screamed as he activated the flight function. “New software update?”
“Yeah. Does it fly smoothly? There were some glitches the other day.” Woojin asked through their connected ear pieces.
“Glitches!? Like, it could shut down on me at anytime!?”
“Relax, I fixed them! I think...” Woojin chuckled. “You should be fine, though. All of your stats look good so far.”
Felix flew in between the city buildings, over cars, near the ocean, through the night market to snatch up some snacks - you name it, he probably already flew through it in a matter of seconds. Tonight it was Felix’s job to keep watch over the city for any robberies, assaults, or drug busts. He secretly always hoped to catch some mafia smuggling drugs on one of those cargo ships by the pier, but alas, this city was too nice to have something that exciting ever happen. As a result, he was always stuck with the robberies and a handful of assault situations.
“See anything?” Woojin asked.
“Not really,” he replied, cheeks full of street food. “Seems like a rather quiet night.”
“I hope you find something. We have a quota to meet to report to the police. We’re one short.”
“Hey, give that back!!” Felix heard from below.
“Looks like I found the one,” Felix grinned.
Immediately, he took action and flew to the source of the call. Before doing anything risky, he decided to watch closely from the roof of a building. He learned the hard way the first time when his head got too big and he jumped right in the middle of everything only to get his ass beat and let the robber get away. From on top of the building, he saw the robber dressed in all black sprinting down the street with someone following him.
Wait a minute, was that -
“Get back here, you dick!” he heard you scream.
With a dropped jaw, Felix watched you chase after the culprit, keeping a steady pace but he doesn’t think you’ll last very long. He knows how you are when it comes to physical activity. He’d have to figure out a way to scold you for this later without revealing his identity to you because this had to be dumbest thing you’ve ever done in your entire life.
“_____, you idiot, what if he has a gun!” Felix said to no one in particular.
“You know that person?” Woojin asked.
“Yeah, we’re close friends.”
“Are they the reason why you’re so late all the time?”
“Ah, don’t blame them ~ Me being late every time is my decision.”
“You’re not going to follow them, are you?”
“Are you kidding me? Of course I am! What kind of superhero slash friend would I be to leave them chasing after someone who could have a concealed weapon!?”
“You might blow your cover! Wouldn’t your closest friends recognize you right off the bat?”
“I don’t know, _____ isn’t the brightest light bulb in the box,” he lied. You definitely weren’t dumb, and the chances of you realizing it was Felix when you saw him were quite high, but he couldn’t just leave you to your own devices! You were terrifying and lost all control of yourself whenever you got mad, so anything goes in your current situation. “I think I should follow - at least until I know they’re safe.”
“Just don’t be stupid.”
“Roger that.”
Before you were too far, Felix followed you, jumping from rooftop to rooftop block after block. How you were able to keep up with this guy was beyond him because he could so clearly remember how horribly you did on both the pacer test and the mile run back in high school. Even Felix was beginning to tire after chasing you, but still, he kept a close eye on you.
The robber rounded the corner and took advantage of the dark alley and there was when you halted, afraid of what might happen if you continued. So Felix took it upon him to help you out. Before the robber could reach the other side of the alley, he jumped down from the rooftop in front of him, causing the guy to stumble backwards and fall on his ass in fright.
“What the fuck?” he heard both you and the robber say simultaneously.
“Sup,” Felix greeted. “I think you have something there that doesn’t belong to you, friend.”
“Oh, yeah? And what are you gonna do about it?” the robber threatened.
“Guess I’ll have to take it from ya.”
Your eyes could barely follow the last three seconds. The first second, this figure skater-looking dude snatched your bag back from the robber, the second he’s at your side handing it to you, and the third he scooped you up in his arms and flew you away to God only knows where with the sound of firing gunshots echoing below.
How do you tell a superhero that you’re deathly afraid of heights without shattering his eardrums? You cling onto him for life, of course. Felix completely forgot about your huge fear of heights until he was already in the air flying you back to campus near your apartment. Looking down at you, Felix saw you had your eyes shut tight and your face buried in his shoulder hoping that would help you forget how high off of the ground you were.
Finally, after what seemed like an eternity, the superhero landed smoothly in the middle of the empty Quad and set you down gently. Your legs felt like jelly from all of the running and fear of flying, so you fell to the ground and hugged the grass beneath you.
“Land… Good, sturdy, solid dirt…” you muttered to no one, though Felix couldn’t help but chuckle above you.
“Are you ok?” the boy asked, hovering over your seemingly-dead body.
“I feel like I died and been reborn at least ten times today…”
“At least you ended up reborn and alive, huh?”
“Yeah… Hey, wait a minute.”
You sat up from your limp state to get a good look at the boy who saved you. He was wearing all black - some parts were shiny and reflected the colors of the moon, some parts were matte, mimicking the dark negative space of the sky. His eye mask and dark hair matched the rest of his suit well, though you couldn’t get over the fact that he kind of looked like some gothy-vampire-greaser hybrid. He was cute, though, if you had to generalize, especially his eyes, which were big and wide staring into your soul (due to the fact that he was terrified that you might have found out who he really was).
“What are you, exactly?” you asked, unsure if that was the correct way to word such a question.
“Well, I identify as a dude, so I use he/him pronouns -”
“No, not that! Like, what’s with the whole tight suit get-up? Are you some kind of superhero, or…?”
“Eh, I wouldn’t go as far as calling me a superhero. I don’t really save the world from destruction - at least not yet, I think I have to wait until I’m promoted to do that.”
“So what, you’re like a vigilante?”
“Ugh, I hate that word, it’s so derogatory and incorrect. Why even bother with labels, anyways!?”
“You don’t even know what you are, do you?”
“Not a clue,” the boy admitted, taking a seat beside you. “I just started this gig, I don’t think I have a right to call myself anything at the moment.”
“Maybe not a superhero, but a hero would be appropriate.”
“You think so?” he beamed cutely.
“You sure saved my ass from having to purchase a new laptop and textbooks. That’s a hero in my book.”
“Ah, you flatter me. If I can ask, what at are you doing out so late? It’s dangerous for you to be walking home at this time.”
“I was working on a paper in the library that I totally forgot about, so I had to cram it in after dinner. I ended up finishing it, though! So this was all worth it in the end.”
“Ah yes, risking your health and life for school - typical you move.”
“How would you know that’s a typical me move?”
Shit. Felix knew he was bound to slip up some time the longer he talked to you. “B-Because you’re a student? I don’t know, aren’t all students like that?”
“There are a few that aren’t,” you said, and Felix knew you were talking about him. You stood up and dusted the dirt off of your pants. “I’ll leave you to your job then.”
“Oh no, I’m not letting you walk home alone again after what just happened.”
“What do you mean, I’ll be fine! What are the chances that I’ll get robbed twice?”
“More likely than you think. Come on, I’ll take you home.”
“We’re not gonna fly, are we - wait, hey!!”
With a mischievous grin that flashed before your tired eyes, the boy scooped you up again in his arms and flew high up in the air. Felix was about to go straight to your apartment, but that would be terrifying if a ‘stranger’ knew where you lived, right? So he hovered high over the Quad with you in his arms, keeping you safe and sound.
“Where do you live?” he asked, holding in his laugh as he saw your eyes shut tight again.
“O-On the corner of f-first and north.”
“Gotcha.” And so he began to fly once more. “You should open your eyes. The view’s great.”
“No, thank you.”
“C’mon! The stars are twinkling, the city lights are glorious - this is a once in a lifetime opportunity ~” the boy sang.
“Really?” Cautiously, you opened one eye and took a peak at the horizon. The city lights created a light halo over the city, like it was covered in a warm blanket. The halo was so bright that it was hard to see the stars, but they promised you their presence. “Wow… even in the tallest building in the country, I could never get a view this beautiful.”
“Breathtaking, huh?” Felix grinned. “I’m glad you’ve overcome your fear and opened your eyes.”
“Oh no, I’m still incredibly terrified,” you said, clinging onto him more. “But I’m still glad I opened my eyes.”
“Are you going to keep them open?”
“Of course I am! Who knows if you’re actually taking me to my apartment.”
“Even if I wanted to kidnap you, I know where you live now so realistically, I could snatch you up at any time.”
“Now I definitely feel safe that the fate of this country is in your hands...”
It didn’t take long for your mysterious flying knight in black armour to drop you off at your apartment doorstep. He gently settled you on your clumsy feet and his original plan was to just fly away without a goodbye, but how could he when you looked at him with your eyes so wide and cute? Your eyes were only ever this big when you saw a dog or food, so Felix must have been looking pretty good for you to look at him that way.
“Be more careful next time,” he scolded gently. “There are some strange guys out there.”
“Stranger than a superhero who flies and knows where I live?”
“Much stranger, I promise you.”
“Well, thank you for saving me. I guess I owe you one.”
“You don’t owe me anything other than promising you’ll be more careful.”
“Ok, I promise ~ Where are you going now?”
“To save some other beautiful soul, I guess,” he winked. “So goodnight, love. Duty calls.”
“W-Wait!” you blushed. “What’s your name?”
“My name?” Well, shoot… Did he ever think of a pseudonym? “I ~ don’t have one.”
“Wow, mysterious,” you teased. “An unnamed superhero? That’s pretty unique, I guess. At least it’s not something cheesy.”
“I’m glad you think so.”
“Can I give you a nickname for myself?”
“Depends - is it ‘My Knight in Shining Armor’? Or ‘The Handsome Hero’?” Felix smirked, flexing his muscles a bit.
“Ha! Quite full of yourself for a superhero.”
“Aren’t we all?”
“Yeah, I guess you’re right. But actually, you were very close the first time. Can I nickname you Lancelot?”
“Lancelot? Like that one Knight dude?”
“Exactly like that one knight dude.”
“Why him?”
“Well, as you said, you were my knight in shining black armor. I could’ve been seriously injured if it wasn’t for you. And Lancelot also had a famous affair with the King’s wife, and I don’t know what it is about you, but I could totally see you doing that.”
“Thanks, I think… Lancelot it is. Can I give you a nickname, too?”
“Do I have a choice?”
“Not really. How about Fearless Kitten?” Felix giggled.
“Oh come on, at least the one I gave you was cool! This one is totally lame!!” you pouted sourly.
“No, think about it! You were totally fearless running after the sicko who stole your bag, but you’re completely helpless when you’re two feet off of the ground! A very fearless kitten! You’re also very cute ~”
“Don’t try to flirt with me just so you could have your way with a nickname for me!”
“Too late, I spoke it into existence and now I like it too much.”
There’s something about the way you bickered with your hero that made you think you knew him somehow. Maybe he was an old childhood classmate? Some random kid in one of your lectures? A customer that came into your cafe one evening? You’re not so sure, but there’s something about him and the back-and-forth banter that you can’t seem to put your finger on…
“Hey, Lancelot,” you began. “Do I know you from somewhere?”
Looks like that’s Felix’s cue to leave. “Nope, I highly doubt it. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have some chivalrous duties to attend to -”
“Wait wait, one last thing, I promise!” you begged shamelessly.
“Will I see you again?”
Felix dropped his eyes down to your hands. Your fingers toyed with nothing but themselves and it was a nervous habit you developed sometime around second year of high school when you asked out some poor sucker to Homecoming and he rejected you on the spot. You picked at your hands for weeks after that, so humiliated that you dared to ask such a stupid question and it was pretty much Felix’s responsibility to make sure you didn’t peel off your dermis. Of course over time, the habit’s not that bad on your skin anymore, but you still twiddled your fingers here and there. Never in Felix’s time of knowing you did he think you’d ever do that because of him.
“Why? Will you miss me that much?” Felix teased, unable to bring his ego down from space.
“No, it’s just… I don’t know, you seem cool…” you said shyly. You felt like you were confessing to that one guy your second year of high school all over again. Toughen up, _____! It’s not like you’re asking him out on a date! “J-Just don’t be a stranger.”
“Don’t worry, I know we’ll see each other again soon, whether it be in passing or you got robbed again.”
“Pinky promise,” he said holding out his pinky. “Knights always keep their promises.”
“If you say so,” you replied, hooking your pinkies together. “Stay safe saving the country, Lancelot.”
“For you, Fearless Kitten, I will.”
With that, he jumped into the air and flew away faster than your eyes could comprehend. Were you two really flying that fast!? Ugh, you had to lie down for a minute or thirty to process what just happened.
“Oh, my God, you two could not have been more obvious,” Woojin tisked in Felix’s ear.
“What do you mean?”
“It’s like the only language you both speak is flirt! ‘Ooh, Lancelot ~’ ‘Ooh, Fearless Kitten ~’ ‘Promise ~?’ ‘Pinky promise -”
“Ok, I get it! But we were totally not flirting! Well ok, maybe I was, but they weren’t! That’s not how _____ flirts anyways, they’re usually more awkward than that.”
“Well, if you ask me, you’re lucky they don’t know Lancelot is you.”
“Why’s that?”
“Because I think they like you.”
“What? No way… You think?”
As if on cue, Felix’s phone buzzed in his pocket. He paused in mid-flight to pull it out and take a look. In a long stream of many heart emojis and caps-locked words, you sent him a text message.
“Told you ~” Woojin sang.
“Shut up…”
feelslix [00:56]: tell me all about it.
“Hey Felix, why do men suck?”
On a boring Sunday at your apartment, you and Felix spent the whole day together. Today was his day off and you had him all to yourself, but all you did was sulk about your precious Lancelot. It’s been almost a month since you told Felix about your fateful encounter, and even when Lancelot promised you he wouldn’t be a stranger, you hadn’t seen him since. You thought that you’d be able to pick his brain and get to know him more and who knows, maybe he’d reveal his identity to you and you’d fall in love and get married and have two beautiful children together, but maybe he could read minds and saw you think those creepy things and had avoided you ever since. And oh, poor Felix, who has been listening to you whine about him the entire month.
“Because men are incapable of having feelings?” Felix replied mindlessly next to you on your couch.
“You’re just mad because he’s not real.”
“But he is real!”
“It’s a shame you can’t prove it ~”
“Ugh!” You hated it when he was right, that you couldn’t prove your point to Felix, at least not yet. Until you had proof, he’d milk being right until he got bored, but for now he liked seeing your brows furrowed and your lips pout. It was cute.
“What’s so special about him, anyway?”
“I don’t know… He was just so charming and nice, you know? It was easy to be myself around him, even if he was a complete stranger. It was so weird, it’s like I’ve known him my entire life,” you sighed dreamily.
“Sounds like a cool dude.”
“Yeah. He’s also super hot.”
Mid-sip, Felix choked on his soda and went through a painful coughing fit while you patted his back to help ease the pain. Did he hear that right? Did you just call him hot? Well, not him, but you know… him?
“Are you ok?” you asked.
“Y-Yeah, just went down the wrong pipe…!” He coughed one last time. “So he’s charming, nice, and hot, huh? Sounds like me ~”
“Ha!” you scoffed insultingly loudly. “Far from it!”
“What!? C’mon, at least I’m nice, right!?”
“Only sometimes.”
“When am I not nice!?”
“You eat and drink all of my groceries, you leave a mess in my apartment all the time, you make me take your notes and do your homework -”
“Hey, that last one’s all your decision!”
“Yeah, ‘cuz I’m nice.”
“Ok, but what about the time when you got stood up on your date and I took you out instead? Or when I bought you three different pints of ice cream when your wisdom teeth got taken out? And I let you use my free laundry!”
“That’s why I said sometimes.”
“So ungrateful…”
You pulled a pouting Felix into a light headlock and ruffled his strawberry blond head. “Quit being jealous! You know I love you, right?”
“Barely. But I love you, too. And I’m not jealous!”
“Uh-huh ~”
Felix got up to get himself another soda and something to clean up the mess he made from coughing. “So what we doing for your birthday?”
“My birthday?” you asked, completely forgetting that it was coming up. “Oh, that’s next Saturday, huh?”
“Yup. Another year closer to death.”
“Eh, I don’t know. Can we just go out to eat?”
“That’s it? You don’t want to hit some nerdy museum, or bookstore, or some artsy fartsy store?”
“Maybe we can, but I don’t know, my birthday gets less and less special every year,” you shrugged, not really caring.
“C’mon, it was the day you were born! It’s a special day to celebrate!”
“I don’t know, now that I’m legal and can drink, there’s no point. That is, until I can rent a car.”
“Well, we’re doing something on your birthday and that’s that,” Felix said sternly.
“Why, do you have a plan?”
“Not at all, but I’ll figure it out.”
“Wow, you must really like me.”
“Yeah… only sometimes,” he teased, giving you the bright smile your heart was so used to.
You two locked eyes for a moment. Your cheeks began to flare, warming up your entire body, unsure of why you were reacting this way all because of Felix. You’ve been around each other for years - since middle school, to be exact - and yet you’ve never shared a moment quite like this, staring into each other’s eyes and being pulled into each other like a magnet. And you know what’s crazy? It was exactly like in the movies! That’s how your life has felt like lately, like think about it - a month ago you met a hot superhero that saved your life, your birthday’s conveniently coming up, there’s a weird spark between you and your best friend, your lips are centimeters apart, and you so wished whatever omniscient being that was controlling your life would just hit the pause button really quick so you could process everything and -!
To your… relief? Dismay? You’re not sure how you felt when Felix jumped up quickly to reach for his ringing phone.
“Y-Yes, hello…!?” Felix stuttered.
“Uh, did I interrupt something…?” Woojin asked.
“No! No, I’m just with a friend. You just startled me.”
“Whatever you say. Anyways, I called because I need you for tonight.”
“What? But it’s my day off.”
“I know, I’m sorry, but there’s a lead on some drug pushing that I thought you’d be excited about. Please come, I’ll pay you double.”
“Uh…” Felix looked back at you sitting on the couch, touching your cheeks and checking how hot you must be after what just happened. You were so cute, and God, there was nothing more that Felix wanted to do than to continue where you left off, but the money was too good for him to pass up. Until next time. “Ok, I’ll be there soon.”
“Great, I’ll see you soon.”
Felix sighed loudly after hanging up the phone and turned to look at you with a sorry look on his face. “I got called in to work just now.”
“On a Sunday?”
“Yeah. You know how interns are treated - like shit.”
“To think I’d have you all to myself for once,” you frowned.
“I’ll make it up to you on your birthday, I pinky promise.” Felix leaned down and pressed a light kiss on top of your head, a mutually, totally, exclusively platonic gesture you were both used to. “I’ll see you tomorrow in class?”
“Ok, bet.”
“Yeah, you’re right… See you at lunch?”
The charming boy left you alone for your confusion to brew into some concoction you’d think about all night or until you push it to the back of your mind. You’re still unsure of how to feel… or what to feel, other than confused. You’re not mad at yourself for leaning into what would have been a kiss because it’s not like you did out of loneliness or for the sake of your own selfishness. You’ve always been kind of curious what it’d be like to kiss Felix, and it was crystal clear that he felt the same way, right? Or was he just lured in by the force of the magnet and had no control over it? After all, he did jump up for his phone very quickly.
You may not have been sure of how to feel or how Felix felt about it, and he saw it in your face, but oh, how sure was he about it. The moment you were caught in each other’s pull, he took it upon himself to take advantage of it and lean in because he’d have to be an idiot to pass this up. But midway, he started thinking about how you must be feeling. He thought the same thing you did about him - that you were simply caught up and had no control of yourself. And so he was thankful that Woojin called because if your first kiss together wasn’t mutual, then what was the point?
What if he was just overthinking it though? That’s extremely likely, considering you were leaning in, too, right? And when your eyes fluttered closed… and when you puckered your cute lips… God, out of all times, Woojin had to call now!?
The longer you stayed in your apartment, the more you were overthinking those short ten or so seconds. Even the television couldn’t drown out your thoughts. So rather than sulking under your fuzzy blankets, you decided to take a walk to the grocery store because your pantry and refrigerator were depressingly empty.
The market wasn’t going to close anytime soon, so you took advantage of taking the long way, immersing yourself with your music and trying to drown out anything that had to do with Felix. But that didn’t work because every other song that came on was a song that either you and him listened to on repeat many times before or he showed it to you (“You have to thank me whenever you listen to this song because I showed it to you.” “Never in my life would I credit you for something so prestigious.”). After skipping twenty songs in a row, you decided tonight would be a night without music.
At the grocery store, you picked up the essentials, like snacks, instant noodles, drinks, and a carton of eggs. Since Felix wasn’t here to help you carry things, you couldn’t purchase a lot, and yet again have you come full circle thinking how much fun it was whenever you were with him doing simple tasks like this. You sighed deeply, daydreaming about those fun times. Maybe a snack from the night market would distract you -
“Hey, stranger!”
Sir Lancelot, in all his spandex glory, jumped right in front of you, startling you and causing you to fall flat on your ass on the hard cement with a loud scream. Felix had finished his job with the drug cartel Woojin assigned him to and on his way back home, he saw you walking with that dreamy look on your face that clearly meant you weren’t paying attention.
“Bro, what the hell!” you cried out. “Aren’t you supposed to protect civilians, not scare them!?”
“I thought this would be more fun.” Which it was. Felix always had fun startling you.
“My eggs!” you whined, seeing how every single one cracked and leaked with yolk. “These were cage free eggs, you monster!”
“All right, I’m sorry! How about I buy you something to eat. Will that make up for it?”
“Fine… I want that fish-shaped bread with chocolate from the market.”
“You got it, Fearless Kitten.” Felix took a handful of your groceries and led the way to the night market.
“You’re just going to wear that there?” you asked.
“Of course. I can’t have people knowing my real identity. I have a lot of enemies, you know.”
“But still, you’re out in the open and everything.”
“Maybe my enemies will be scared off with my presence. I’m very much not in the mood for anything tonight, so let’s hope for that.”
“Oh? A hero not in the mood to save the world?”
“Hey, I just busted a huge drug cartel right before I found you! I deserve a break.”
“I’ll believe it when I see it on the news.”
A pouty Lancelot walked beside you as you both entered the night market. Sundays were always one of the busiest nights, as tons of local places came here to purchase fresh ingredients and the tourists came to buy cheap souvenirs. Your hero gained a ton of stares and gasps from all the tourists, though the locals and the shop owners seemed to already know of his existence, including the bakery that sold the fish-shaped bread.
“Wow, free snacks? The privilege,” you noted.
“Free snacks in exchange for safety. Not sure if risking my life over it is equivalent, but it helps when I’m paying back my favorite civilian for breaking their eggs.”
“Cage free eggs.”
The biggest and most important downside to this whole superhero gig was that Felix missed spending all of his free time with you, but at least he could kind of make up for it this way. Although you might never find out that he was your Lancelot, the little moments together patched up his heart just a little. But was it possible to be jealous of his own self? There was a certain twinkle in your eyes and your smile was always shy whenever he caught you looking at him and he’d never seen you look that way towards anyone before. He’d always hoped that one day you’d look at him like that - Felix, not the superhero. It made him wonder if he had kissed you earlier, would you not be looking at Lancelot this way? Would you look at Felix like this instead?
Felix had offered to take you home once again and this time you insisted on just walking because you could really use the time and the company right now. He happily obliged.
“So tell me about yourself, Fearless Kitten.”
“For starters, my name is _____, not Kitten.”
“_____, huh? I like it.”
“Thanks,” you blushed. “I’m a student, I’m clumsy, and I like dessert.”
“That’s not fair, I knew all of those things already! Get a little extreme on me.”
“I’m incapable of love.” Whoa. Felix hadn’t heard that one before. He wondered where this was coming from all of a sudden. “Too extreme?”
“Not at all. What makes you think you’re incapable?”
“I don’t know… This always happens around my birthday. I get kind of lonely that I don’t get to spend it with anyone special.”
“I mean, I’m sure you have friends to celebrate with, right?” Felix asked, quite insulted that you would say something like that right in front of him, even if you didn’t know he was Lancelot.
“I do, but… See, I have this friend. He’s my best friend, we’ve known each other since we were awkward and going through puberty. We’ve spent a lot of time together since then, but recently he just landed this internship and it’s taking up a lot of his time. Of course, I’m super stoked for him, you know, but I can’t help but feel bitter that he’s no longer spending his free time with me. We’re supposed to hang out this Saturday for my birthday, but I’m worried he’ll have to work or something. Am I being selfish?”
Your hero held a soft smile on his lips. Felix had no idea that you felt this way and he wish he could tell you himself that you weren’t selfish at all and that he’d promise to be with you more often, but for now, only Lancelot could reassure you.
“I don’t think you’re being selfish at all. You just miss your friend, right?” You nodded as a response. “I don’t think you have anything to worry about.”
“Really. He’ll make time for you because he cares.”
“I know you have no idea who this guy is and you’re just saying words, but God, do I feel relieved.”
“I’m glad,” the hero cutely chuckled. His laugh sounded familiar. “So do you two like… have a thing going on, or…?”
“A thing? Like do we like each other? I don’t think so.” Felix dropped his head slightly. So you didn’t think anything of what happened then. “Although that’s funny that you mentioned it.”
“Why? Did something happen?” he asked almost too eagerly.
“Yeah, we almost kissed earlier.”
“Ooh, do I hear sparks?”
“I don’t think sparks is the right word. I can’t even remember how it got to that point in the first place, but I just remember being pulled in like… like…”
“Like two polar magnets?”
“And time was moving so slowly. Like no matter how close your lips were, it was like the universe made sure they wouldn’t touch?”
“Yeah… wow, hey that’s pretty good.”
“Thanks, I uh, took a poetry class once,” Felix lied, clearing his throat. “Did you feel anything?”
“I think I did. I mean, I’ve always been curious about us, like what if we actually dated. Typical best friends-to-lovers trope, you know? But then he jumped up so fast to get his phone when it rang and I think I scared him away…”
No! That’s not what happened at all! “What if he just thought it was an urgent call?”
“Nah, you should have seen the way he jumped up. No way he wanted to kiss me.”
“Who wouldn’t want to kiss you?” Felix said without thinking.
Fuck. Maybe he could play it off as Lancelot just being flirty. “C’mon, Fearless Lover, look at you. Any guy would be lucky to kiss you.”
“Except him, apparently. But now that I think about it, maybe it’s for the better -”
“I think you should try again.”
“Are you crazy!? That’s friendship suicide! Kissing is like the number one thing that’s off-limits!”
“You were making it seem like you wanted it to happen!”
“Yeah, maybe in that moment! But can you imagine if I actually went through with it!? I don’t think our friendship would last long after that.”
“But what if it’s the best thing that could happen between the two of you?”
“I’m all for if it’s meant to be, then it’ll happen. So if he wants to kiss me, then he’ll kiss me. But my expectations could not get any lower.”
“God, are you always this stubborn?”
“Depends on the day.”
You and Lancelot arrived back to your apartment just as the conversation ended. You didn’t realize how long you’ve been talking to him this whole time. It was crazy how incredibly easy it was to open up to him and talk. In a way, he reminded you of Felix - a hotter, suaver Felix.
“Thank you for not only breaking my eggs, but for being my love consultant, too,” you said.
“I find that it’ll always be a pleasure whenever I’m with you, _____,” he bowed teasingly, as if he were a real knight.
“Will you ever tell me who you are?”
“One day.”
Felix sighed. Should he really commit to a promise like this? If you somehow find out before he tells you, or even if he is the one to tell you, you might not ever trust him again. But you deserved to know who he really was, right? And how could he say now when you held your pinky out to him and held a pout on your cute, pink lips.
“Pinky promise,” he said, wrapping his pinky around yours once again.
“Just a reminder, my birthday is Saturday, so you better say happy birthday to me.”
He chuckled in his cute, boyish way that sounded too familiar. “Will do, love.”
“Stay safe saving the country!” You waved him off as he flew among the clouds and the stars off to God only knows where.
After putting your groceries away, you were completely exhausted from today’s events. From almost kissing your best friend to meeting up with your super cool superhero friend, your life really was like a movie. To be completely honest, you had no idea what you were going to do about your feelings for Felix or the weird flutter in your heart whenever you thought about Lancelot, but you figured that this was going to be a tomorrow problem and you’d figure it out after you slept on it.
Your week went by incredibly slow. It was a weird week, to say the least. Not only had Felix been coming to class more, but he’s been going out of his way to spend time with you every chance he got, as if you both were in high school again. You weren’t complaining or anything, it was just weird that you were talking about this to Lancelot on Sunday. It was like Felix was listening, or something.
Oddly enough, you didn’t see Lancelot at all that week. You’d take frequent peaks out your balcony window, even go on walks to random places at night while Felix accompanied you, but Lancelot never showed up even for a second. It was upsetting, really, because not only did you want to prove Felix that you were right, but you kind of missed him. That’s when Felix started to get jealous again because now that he was here with you more, just like you asked, you still ended up looking for Lancelot. So what was the truth - did you like Felix and wanted to kiss him or did you fall for Lancelot already and it was too late?
He had to make sure that wouldn’t be the case. On your birthday, he made it clear to Woojin that he could not and would not work at all that day just so he could spend your birthday with you. He had this huge plan set and ready. He was going to throw a huge surprise party for you at his and Jisung’s apartment with all of your friends and you would spend the night together drinking and dancing and having the time of your lives. He’d hold you in his arms on the dance floor, keeping you close so that no one else could snatch you up, dancing to your favorite songs all night until your feet could no longer move. Then towards the end of the night, when not many people were left, he’d take you to the roof to get some air. He’d tell you to close your eyes because he has your present behind his back. Then he’d kiss you. And in a perfect world, you’d kiss him back and you two would live happily ever after together.
That was Plan A. Don’t ask about Plan B because he doesn’t have one.
Saturday finally came around Felix promised you a whole day of hanging out. While you two had lunch, went to your favorite stores and museums, and ate dinner, Jisung was busy setting up his apartment for the party.
“You totally owe me if this works out,” Jisung pouted after reluctantly agreeing to such an effort-full task.
“I do, but if you end up hooking up with some poor sucker, that’s my payment.”
“... Fine…”
From lunch until dinner, everything went exactly how you wanted to spend your birthday - doing normal things with Felix. But after grabbing dessert, he put a blindfold on you and said he had one last place to take you.
“If you like ditch me at the park or something, I’m gonna kill you,” you threatened, keeping a tight hold of Felix’s hands on your shoulders.
“I would never do that to you! How mean do you think I am!?”
“I don’t know, blindfolds make me nervous!”
You heard a key fit into a lock and the door opened. You couldn’t hear anything, so maybe his last surprise was just taking you home and enjoying a relaxing night in -
“Surprise!!” When Felix took off your blindfold, all of your mutual friends and then some greeted you with a big smile and tons of party toys. Jisung decorated the place quite nicely, with the drinks and games in one section and the dance floor in another.
You couldn’t stop your grin from growing. Oh yeah, this was ten times better than just staying in.
“Did you plan all of this?” you asked Felix, who quickly became shy after.
“I thought we could celebrate with more people this time. Happy birthday, _____.”
“You’re so sweet. Thank you.”
“Ok, let the party begin!” Dj Jisung cheered as he turned up the music.
The apartment was packed, mostly with people you knew, but there were a few you didn’t recognize though you didn’t really care. It’s been awhile since you had fun at a party and what better way to celebrate it with these people on your birthday? You needed a distraction from all your thoughts about Felix and Lancelot anyways, but it was hard when Felix followed you around. Not that you didn’t mind taking shot after shot with your best friend, but in your tipsy state, you let things slip without thinking - holding his hand as you walked through the crowds, lips lingering near your ear just a moment longer whenever he had something to tell you, and having him hold you close on the dance floor were just a few examples of skinship you didn’t mind for once. You were much too tipsy to care and now you knew what all of those things felt like.
Needless to say, you really liked it.
Maybe you should tell Felix how you felt. You were high above the clouds the whole day and there’s nothing that could bring you down, even rejection. You had to take your chance, because the way he responded and reciprocated your little gestures, it was now or never. Luck was on your side tonight.
Hours later, though seemingly felt like short minutes, guests began to file out as it was already late. Only your closest friends stayed behind to catch up and clean up a bit.
“Wanna get some air?” Felix asked, tilting his head towards the balcony.
“That sounds great, I feel really gross in here.”
The fresh air felt cool against the bare parts of your skin. You and Felix leaned on the railing, enjoying each other’s company and the halo of light the city made over itself. It reminded you both of the time Felix held you in his arms and flew you home the first night he met you as your knight in black spandex.
“Did you enjoy the party?” Felix asked awkwardly, unsure of how to lead the conversation to a confession.
“I loved it. You really didn’t have to.”
“But I wanted to.”
“I know, and I love you for it. I would have been equally as happy if it was just you and I for the whole day.”
“Man, I wish I knew this earlier! I wouldn’t have gone through all this trouble.”
“Too late!” you giggled. “I had lots of fun. Today was the best birthday I’ve had in a long time. And who knew you were such a good dancer.”
“What, you always knew that!”
“Yeah, for a set choreography. I must say your freestyle isn’t one to be reckoned with.”
“I am the best, aren’t I?” he smirked. “I like dancing with you.”
“You do?”
“Yeah,” Felix blushed. “We should do that again sometime.”
“I’d like that.”
“I have one more thing I want to give you.”
“Felix, you’ve already done a lot -!”
“It’s the last one, I promise. Close your eyes for me.”
Though you were reluctant, you did as you were told and you couldn’t control the rate of your heart. You had a feeling of what he wanted to give you, yet you were still so nervous and unsure of yourself. Felix was feeling the same way, but he figured after tonight, his chances were looking pretty good.
As he leaned in, his phone rang.
“Shit,” he muttered, looking at the caller ID.
You opened your eyes. “Is everything all right?”
“Yeah, um, give me a sec.” Felix went inside and talked to an unoccupied corner in the living room. “What?” he sneered into the receiver.
“I need you to come over,” Woojin said in a shaky voice.
“I told you today is the one day I can’t!”
“I know, but I really need your help. I’m a bit tied up at the moment - ow!”
Felix sensed the tone in Woojin’s voice and a hard slap that followed. He was in trouble and the only one who could get him out was Felix.
“Fuck,” he cursed to no one in particular. “I’m on my way.”
“Thank you I owe you -!” The phone cut out.
From inside the apartment, Felix saw you patiently waiting on the balcony. God, did you look so heavenly in the moonlight. He didn’t want to leave you.
He opened the door and you can already tell he had bad news.
“Duty calls?” you asked bitterly.
“Yeah,” he sighed.
“At one in the morning?”
“I know, it’s ridiculous, right?”
“I don’t even know what you do.”
“I can’t tell you that. At least not now.”
“I’ll tell you when I get back. I promise you.”
This was your cue to say ‘pinky promise?’ but you’re so upset that not only do you not ask, you can’t even look at him, either. All you wanted was to spend your birthday with him, and granted it was already late and you were being selfish, but you were tired of him putting whatever internship this was before you. Felix hated your silent treatment, and if he could confess everything up to this point he would, but he has a boss in trouble waiting to be saved. He’d come back and save you later.
He put his hand on top of yours. “I’ll see you tomorrow…?”
You move your hand away from his and turn your head so he doesn’t see the tears well in your eyes. “I’m busy,” you lied.
“Then I’ll see you soon.” You only nod in response, still not turning to look at him, and it breaks his heart. “Happy birthday, _____.”
Before walking out the main door, Felix looked back at you. You were still facing the glorious city, but your hands were covering your face and your shoulders were shaking and he figured that you must have been crying all because of him. He so badly wanted to run back to you and hold you in his arms and press soft kisses all over your head until you stopped crying, but life had a funny way with screwing with him.
On his way to Woojin’s, the only thing that ran through Felix’s mind was how this was exactly what you meant when you told Lancelot that you felt lonely after he took up this ‘internship’. As Lancelot, he told you that he’d make time for you because he wanted to, and even when he tried, duty called and bit him in the ass.
He’d just have to make more time for you next time. If there was a next time, that is.
Despite Jisung and Changbin’s begging for you to stay, you insisted that you were tired and they let you go. You were tired of everything that had to do with boys and all you wanted was to bury yourself beneath your covers and never think about a boy ever again, or at least for as long as you could avoid them because Felix would catch you sooner or later. On the way home, you kind of felt guilty for leaving things on such a bitter note, but it was your birthday, dammit! Was it that hard for Felix to keep his attention on you for the entirety of your birthday!?
… So maybe you were asking too much, but to leave you for his job on your birthday!?
… So maybe he was just being a good intern…
Ugh, whatever! It’s your birthday, dammit! You were allowed to be a brat!
The distance between your apartment and Felix’s was quite a bit, as it was on opposite sides of the campus. You were only halfway home when someone grabbed you and held a knife to your neck and you swear you blacked out those last two seconds. The man was behind you holding the knife unsteadily and in front of you was your wide-eyed hero, stopped dead in his tracks when he saw it was you. What the hell was happening!?
You were the last person Felix though he’d be seeing tonight. Why the fuck were you walking home alone!? He couldn’t get mad at you now, not when your breathing was uneven and tears were streaming down your face. He just had to make sure you were safe and sound.
“Come any closer and their head is off,” the strange man threatened.
Felix raised his hands in the air as a surrender. “I’ll give you what you want. Just let them go.”
“Give me the suit first.”
Fuck. If Felix took off his suit, you’d know it was him all along. And Woojin would kill him! This project was his baby, after all.
The man pressed the knife into your neck, causing you to yelp out in pain, but no cuts were made. Fuck, what should he do!? “Give. Me. The suit -”
From behind, Woojin knocked out the man behind you by hitting the sweet spot on his head with the handle of his gun. He fell to the ground with a loud thud and you sprinted into the arms of your Lancelot who held you close and stroked your hair comfortingly.
“It’s ok, I’m here,” he whispered. “Thanks, Hyung.”
“You’re welcome. Take them home, I’ll take over from here,” he said, tying up the man below him.
Felix nodded, wasting no time taking you up in the air and flying you home. You must have been so exhausted from today because you fell asleep in his arms and couldn’t enjoy the view of the stars with him. But that’s ok because you looked so peaceful when you were asleep. If only he could hold you in your sleep all the time.
You woke up just as your hero was about to settle you down on your balcony. You were much too tired to care how he knew this one was yours, so you just let it be. You gestured him to join you and you’re glad he did because you don’t think you can be alone right now.
“This was not what I had in mind when I wanted to tell you happy birthday,” Felix sighed tiredly. “Are you ok?”
“Yeah, I think so. Just... A little shocked, that’s all...”
“I never wanted you to get involved with the dirty work. I’m so sorry.”
“Not like my birthday could get any worse, right?”
“Did you at least enjoy today?”
“I almost got my head sliced off.”
“You know I meant before that ~”
“I know, I know. It was ok.”
“Just ok?”
“I mean, it was great until my friend had to leave.”
“The same friend from last time?”
“Yeah,” you sighed. “He put work over me again.”
“I’m sure he had a reason,” Felix mumbled shamefully.
“I’m sure he did, too, but I just wish I knew what it was! I’m tired of being left behind for something I don’t even know about. And I’m so confused! Does he like me or not? It’s like I don’t know who he is anymore…”
His heart dropped to the pit of his stomach when you thought you were being left behind. Was that really how you felt?
“I’m tired of waiting for something to happen. Maybe I should just forget about it. It’s clear he doesn’t feel the same way.”
Here goes nothing. “I have a present for you,” he said.
“Really? You didn’t have to do that.”
“But I wanted to. Close your eyes.”
“The last time someone told me to close my eyes, they left me.”
“Please just do it,” he whined. “I pinky promise I won’t leave.”
Reluctantly, you did as you were told, expecting something to interrupt like his phone ringing or another mob boss was on the loose. But that wasn’t it at all. Felix did not want to waste a single second in case something did interrupt, so he cupped your face in his hands and stopped time when he kissed you.
Lancelot was kissing you. A strange boy dressed in all black was kissing you. His lips were soft and plush and you felt like you could kiss him for hours. You melted under his touch, unaware of how slowly time was passing and you only wished it passed by slower. He began to pull away, but oh no, you would not let that happen and pulled him back in for a deeper kiss, causing the boy to smile against your lips. Jeez, were you always this good of a kisser? Felix should have done this a long time ago.
But he wasn’t Felix right now. He was Lancelot. Would you still want to kiss him like this when he revealed himself to you?
With your hands in his hair and his around your waist, he had to pull you away and take a breather.
“Wow…” he sighed. “I did not expect you to react like that.”
“That’s your fault,” you blushed deeply.
“I, uh, have another gift to show you. Sort of. But you have to promise me something.”
“Which is…?”
“That you won’t get mad.”
“See, now that you said that, I’m gonna be mad.”
“Ugh, I’ll never win with you. Fuck it, I’m gonna do it anyways.”
“Do what -!?”
Stopping you mid-sentence, Lancelot took a step back and removed his eye mask. Soon after, the hairs on his head were no longer black, but the strawberry blond color you missed so much. Felix waited for your reaction and he couldn’t gauge if you were angry, confused, glad, or all of the above. Minutes passed and he still couldn’t tell how you were feeling.
You should be angry. You should be furious that Felix ditched you for such a dangerous job. You should be furious that even after you confessed your feelings about him to him that he didn’t reveal himself right then and there. And you should be furious that he just straight up lied to you these past couple of months! But you’re not.
“You’re my unnamed hero?” you finally asked Felix.
“Unfortunately. Are you mad?”
“Yeah, what the hell, man!” you screamed while hitting him. “How could you lie to me!?”
“You were a completely different person whenever I looked like this and told me things that you would never tell me when I’m Felix. I didn’t want to ruin that for you…” It was only now that Felix realized how stupid his reason sounded. “Are you really mad at me?”
“Kind of, you idiot. I’m embarrassed, if anything.”
“What, why?”
“I totally confessed to you last week and like five minutes ago!”
“And you told me to try again, you sneaky bastard!” You threw another hit to his chest.
“Ow, ok I’m sorry!”
“My feelings about you and the other you were all jumbled up, I couldn’t think properly for weeks! This is why I hate boys like you.”
“But you don’t hate me, do you?” Felix teased, poking your arm annoyingly. “You like me ~”
“Shut up.”
“You like dancing with me, holding my hand, kissing me -”
“Shut uuuup!” you blushed deeply.
A laughing Felix wrapped his arms around your waist and you can’t deny a gesture you’ve been waiting a long time for. “Ok ok, I’ll stop. You’re really not mad at me?”
“If you keep asking me, I will be. But for now, I pinky promise you I’m not. In fact, this makes everything a lot easier for me.”
“Mhm, because I get both of you and now I don’t have to choose.”
“Well, that’s one way to look at it… You know I was so jealous of Lancelot? You looked at me in a way I’ve never seen you be before. I couldn’t believe I was jealous of myself.”
“Yeah, I deserve that.”
“Can I ask something of you? Since you kind of owe me for a whole month of neglect?”
“Anything for you, love.”
“Kiss me again.”
And so he did by pulling his body close to yours and pressing his lips against yours with full force, causing you to laugh and smile against his lips. Your beautiful laugh was so contagious that he couldn’t help but laugh with you. For the rest of the night until the early morning, you spent your time in Felix’s arms simply kissing, with laughing in between each breath until you both realized it was too late to fall asleep without wasting the day. From when your lips needed a break, Felix would show you the mechanics behind the spandex.
It was a lazy evening and morning spent together, tangled beneath the sheets. The perfect way to end your birthday.
Felix’s arm was lazily wrapped around you as you both laid in your bed.
“What do you have going on today that you’re busy?” he mumbled lazily.
“Oh, that? I lied.”
“Yeah, I was just angry at you.”
“... I deserve that. Good, ‘cuz now I have you all to myself.”
And you wouldn’t have it any other way.
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amortean · 3 years ago
new rule: if your character is a sassy little spitfire who likes to talk shit, you better be prepared for your character to get hit. 2018 2019 2020 is the year that muns with these kinds of smartass characters accept that there should be consequences to mouthing off at another character who could easily ruin their fucking day.
if you’re writing a character of high status, immense power, incredible skill, or just someone that you generally would not want to antagonize for shits and giggles, it is not fun feeling as though you have been written into a corner by someone who wants to show off how sassy and badass their character is when you know that your character could DEMOLISH them :T
like, damn, maybe plot together first, or — if you’re flying by the seat of your pants here — let the other person know down in the tags or a quick IM it’s ok if they fuck up ur muse for being a disrespectful little shit. life is more fun when u get to write fight scenes anyway tbh.
anyway pls respect other muns w/ characters who could fuck your shit up b/c it’s really not fun for them when every other character comes at them with their fists up (verbal or otherwise), yet so few people are willing to let their characters face the consequences of their actions.
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rosiethorns88 · 3 years ago
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A new papercraft inspired by a riveting scene from Mistborn: The Final Empire. This moment was so vivid in my mind when I first heard it; Sanderson’s writing paints a scene so lush with as little as a few sentences. I really had fun playing with depth here. Lots of weaving and warping with the mist and mistcloaks. Clip/Coin designs inspired by the official Mistborn Coins by the Shire Post Mint.
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wizardwritings · 2 years ago
How to Fall in Love: For Dummies
Overview: Modern AU. You and Sirius have been best friends for years now, but after six months of living with him, you realize that maybe you liked him as more than a friend. The plan? To make him realize the same thing in just three, foolproof steps.
Word Count: About 7,800. (I’m so sorry, LOL.)
Warning(s): Suggestive scenes, language, sexual tension, drinking, intoxication, jealousy, mutual pining.
Author’s Note: Roommate AU. I genuinely had so much fun writing this. If this happened to me I’d be so happy, I’d probably spontaneously combust. :’/ Hope you like it!
It wasn’t everyday Sirius came home drunk at two in the morning with his shirt missing and a bright, red mark apparent on his forehead.
Sure, you occasionally went out for a few drinks every so often, but you had both left your party days behind you during your first years of university. So the reason Sirius chose to get this intoxicated tonight was beyond you.
“Holy shit, Sirius,” you exclaimed, rushing to meet him at the doorway. “What happened to you?”
“A night out with the lads turned into a competition of who could handle pull the longest.” He leaned in as you put your arm around his torso, giving you a wry smile. “I, of course, had to keep the championship title.”
“Why am I not surprised?” you tutted, shivering as his cold chest came in contact with your bare arm. “And why don’t you have your shirt?”
He scrunched his face up at the memory. “Someone spilled their drink all over me--and I know you’re not a fan of the smell of alcohol, so I discarded it before I got here.”
“That’s...thoughtful. Thank you.” You blinked, feeling his cold fingertips brush against your waist. “But you shouldn’t have; you’re absolutely freezing now.”
“My body can heat up.”
As you sat Sirius down on his bed, you promptly stood over him, checking his face and body for any other bumps and bruises. Thankfully, the only mark you spotted was the one on his forehead.
Running your thumb around the area of discoloration, you pursed your lips. “Wild night?”
“Nah,” he chuckled, resting his palms on his knees. “I just bumped my head trying to get out of the taxi. Nothing big.”
“Must’ve been a hard bang,” you murmured. Taking a step back, you examined his state. “It doesn’t look too bad--though, you might have a small bump tomorrow.”
Sirius raised his eyebrows, immediately wincing at the pressure the movement placed on his forehead. “At least it’ll make me look badass.”
You imagined Sirius with a peculiar lump on his forehead, giggling at the thought. “More or less. Now get in bed.”
He pouted at your reaction, but took his shoes and pants off nonetheless. You quickly averted your gaze in case he decided he wanted to take off even more articles of clothing. In all your years of being best friends with Sirius, you had never seen him completely naked. And that was a sentence you wanted to remain true. For now.
“Can you tuck me in?” asked Sirius, a playful glint in his eyes.
You gave him a look. “Really?”
Rolling your eyes, you placed his comforter over his body and tucked the sides in.
“You really are a man-child when you’re drunk, did you know?” you remarked with a tsk.
“Well this man-child is very grateful for your help.”
You exhaled a small laugh, sitting at the edge of his bed as he turned onto his side facing you.
“So, tell me about your night,” Sirius said, the side of his face resting on his palm. “It probably wasn’t as fun as it could’ve been if you were with me, but…”
“Right,” you drawled. “My night without you was lonely and pathetic. Not at all relaxing and rejuvenating.”
“As expected.”
You shifted in bed next to him, trying to make yourself more comfortable without lying down. You knew that once your head touched the pillow, you wouldn’t be able to make it back to your room.
“How about you?” you asked. “How was your boring, monotonous night without me?”
Sirius nodded, a solemn expression on his face. “Exactly that. Boring and monotonous.”
“I bet.” You gave him a sideways smile. “But, really-- No girl home tonight?”
Now, he wasn’t notorious for bringing one night stands back to your flat, but it wasn’t a bizarre occurrence when it did happen. Still, you found it odd that Sirius hadn’t brought anyone back for over two months now. Even you brought a guy home within that time.
“Wasn’t feeling it,” he said with a shrug, turning to stare up at the ceiling. “Haven’t been for a while now.”
You got comfortable on the pillow next to him, making sure there was space between the two of you as you hummed in response.
“Any reason why?” You felt his gaze on you as you fiddled with the ends of your hair. “Did a special lady finally catch your attention for longer than one night and make you change your ways?”
Sirius let out a breathy chuckle, blowing his hair out of his face. “You know the only special lady in my life is you, Y/N.”
“I don’t doubt that,” you teased, ignoring the sudden warmth the flooded your stomach as his words. Well, that was new.
As the conversation lapsed into a comfortable silence, you stifled a yawn.
“Long night,” you said with a nod, gathering the will to roll out of his bed. “I guess I better head back to my room before I fall asleep here--”
“You could stay,” Sirius placed a gentle hand on your arm, startling you. But after seeing the surprised look on your face, he quickly retracted his touch. “If you want to, that is.”
You subtly noted the slight waver in his normally confident voice, warmth rising to your cheeks. “Sure.”
It wasn’t like you and Sirius had never slept together before. You had been best friends since your primary school days--it would’ve been more bizarre if you hadn’t. But most of the time it was on the couch. After a long night of watching movies. Not in his bed.
Still, you tried to make it seem like it didn’t phase you.
“Fine by me,” you continued, placing the blanket over your body.
“Me, too,” he commented, an amused smirk clouding his expression as he got comfortable under the covers.
In his intoxicated state, Sirius paid no mind to the edge of his hand resting next to your thigh, so close you could feel the warmth emanating from him.
Not that you were complaining.
Snuggling almost imperceptibly closer, you turned to your side, facing away from Sirius. As you felt your eyes beginning to drift shut, you murmured a soft, “Goodnight, Sirius.”
“Sweet dreams, Y/N.”
And with your brain transitioning in and out of unconsciousness, you let yourself melt into Sirius’ arms draped around you, trying to fight the thought that perhaps you wouldn’t mind this being a regular occurance.
- - - - -
A few weeks had passed since you last slept in the same bed as Sirius and, by now, there was no way you could deny it.
“I like Sirius Black.”
“I like Sirius Black.” You winced. Saying it once was hard enough, but repeating it a second time made it seem all too real. “Fuck.”
“Why fuck?” Lily questioned. “There’s nothing wrong with liking Sirius.”
“There’s nothing wrong with liking my best friend who obviously does not like me back.” You planted your head in your hands. “Sure.”
“Who says he doesn’t like you back?” said Marlene.
“Logic and the girl he brought home last week.”
Lily’s jaw dropped. “Well, fuck.”
“Tell me about it,” you grumbled, rubbing your temples with your index and forefingers.
“I mean-- Think about it,” Lily said, trying to find reason in this situation. “Did he bring her home again after that night?”
“Not that I know of.”
Lily clasped her hands around her drink. “Then Sirius doesn’t like her and you still have a chance!”
“But that also means he doesn’t like me,” you said with a sigh. “If he did, he wouldn’t have gotten with another girl in our apartment.”
“But Sirius isn’t a complete dick.” Marlene picked a fry from your tray, dipping it in the ketchup. “If he knew you liked him, he wouldn’t have brought anyone over and blatantly shove it in your face.”
“I suppose.” You twirled the straw of your untouched shake around your finger, not having the appetite to eat. Unrequited attracted tended to have that effect on people. “Not that that’s much better.”
“It is, actually,” Marlene stated, exchanging glances with Lily. “You like him, but he doesn’t like you.”
You pursed your lips, ignoring the sting you felt in the back of your eyes at her words.
“Or rather,” Lily interjected rapidly, seeing the look on your face, “you like him, he likes you, but he doesn’t know he likes you yet.”
“That’s bullshit and you know it,” you said.
“It’s not.” Lily had a stern look in her eye as she talked. “How he acts with you-- He’s not like that with anyone else.”
“Because we’re best friends,” you brushed off. “Of course he’s different with me.”
You saw amused, almost pitying, glances being exchanged between your two friends.
“Should we tell her?” asked Marlene, skeptical.
“I think so,” replied Lily.
Raising a eyebrow, you dipped a fry in your milkshake, waiting for someone to fill you in.
“Y/N, how Sirius is with you is not how he is with other people,” Lily said. “He’s not like that with me and Marlene--though, we’re close to him. He’s not like that with James--though, he’s like a brother to him.”
“And he’s definitely not like that with any his one night stands,” Marlene added.
Marlene folded her arms across her chest. “So? What do you mean so? Sirius likes you, but his dumbass thinks his feelings are purely friendship-based.”
You furrowed your brows, not following Marlene’s logic.
“Sirius treats you differently for a reason. That reason being he likes you,” Lily explained. “But he’s had those feelings for so long without realizing, he let them mix with the feelings of being just friends.”
You followed her reasoning slightly better, but were still confused.
“Now, he doesn’t know where the line between ‘I like her as more than a friend’ starts and the line between ‘I like her as just a friend’ ends.” Lily drummed her fingers along the edge of the table. “There’s only one problem.”
“And what’s that?” you wondered, not exactly buying their logic, but not thinking they were entirely delusional either.
Marlene replied, “He doesn’t know that he doesn’t know yet.”
“What?” you asked incredulously, shaking your head as you tried to comprehend what the pair was saying. “Okay-- So, you’re telling me I like Sirius? And Sirius likes me? But he doesn’t know that he likes me?”
They nodded in confirmation, looking like two dancing bobble heads.
You swore your brain was throbbing right now.
“Okay, for a moment, pretend I believe what you’re saying is the truth... How do you suppose we get Sirius to realize his feelings?”
“It’s simple,” Lily said.
“Oh, really?”
“There’s a plan carefully crafted by Lily and I when we realized you two were idiots who couldn’t see you were in love with each other,” Marlene started, rather ominously.
“Wait-- I never said love--”
Lily waved you off with her hand. “The point is, we knew one of you guys were bound to realize your feelings and come to us begging for help, believing the attraction was unrequited and thus resulting in a, ‘Fuck, I’m in love with my best friend but I’m too oblivious to realize they love me back’ moment.”
“Again, I wouldn’t say love--”
“We just weren’t sure which one of you would seek help first,” Marlene said. “So we made a plan for both cases.”
You blinked, not knowing how else to respond. Your friends really did know how to leave you speechless.
“What plan?” you asked warily, your head hurting from trying to follow the Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson in front of you.
“A simple, foolproof plan that is guaranteed to bring Sirius to his fucking knees,” Marlene said.
“We call it--” Lily started.
“Operation: More Than Friends.”
- - - - -
STEP 1: Make your hotness known.
“Sirius lives with you,” Marlene said. “He knows you’re intelligent and funny and beautiful… But he needs a small reminder of just how hot you are.”
Taking one last look in the mirror, you messed your hair up once more before giving a little spin out the door.
When you spotted Sirius brewing himself a cup of tea in the kitchen, you subconsciously tugged the hem of your shirt down. It wasn’t uncommon for the two of you to walk around in minimal amounts of clothing, especially during the warmer seasons, but the apparel you were in right now--only his shirt--was a bit out of your comfort zone.
“Good morning, Sirius,” you greeted, gratefully accepting the cup of tea he sent your way as you headed to sit down on the other side of the island.
“Morning, darling,” he said while adding some sugar to his drink. “I made us some omelets and toast.”
Smiling in gratitude, you quickly grabbed some utensils, easily falling into your weekend routine.
You knew Sirius was a pampered child growing up, attending private school and having a private chef cook for him in his parent’s mansion. But when he didn’t go to university to earn the degree his parents wanted for him, they cut him off.
After that, Sirius was determined to be self-sufficient, including getting a job and learning to cook for himself. It just so happened he ended up being an amazing cook and was therefore subjected to breakfast duty during the weekends.
“Delicious as always,” you complimented, placing a small piece of the omelet in your mouth.
“Only the best for my best friend.”
“Can you repeat that while I record it and send it to James?”
Sirius laughed, shaking his head. “It would break his heart.”
“But it would make me happy,” you teased, batting your eyelashes dramatically.
“Well, that would make it all worth it, wouldn’t it?”
You bit the inside of your cheek to keep yourself from smiling like a fool. You didn’t want your attraction towards him to be too obvious.
Clearing your throat, you stood up from your chair. “I forgot to get some jam for the toast. Did you want strawberry or grape?”
Walking over to the refrigerator, you peered inside the shelves, tiptoeing to get a better view.
When you didn’t receive a response from Sirius, you spun around, thinking he didn’t hear you well. “Strawberry or grape jam for your toast?”
As you turned to face him, you saw his eyes trailing the length of your legs, lingering at the spot where the hem rode up on your upper thighs.
Following the detailing of his shirt on your body, Sirius rolled his bottom lip in between his teeth, realizing your shoulder exposed by the largeness of his shirt wasn’t adorned with a bra strap. It took all his strength for him to bring his eyes back up to your face rather than down to your chest, but after a few meaningful blinks, he managed to tear his gaze away.
“Well?” you asked innocently, trying to hide the fact that your stomach was flipping and your heart was fluttering both because Step 1 was accomplished and because Sirius was looking at you in that way.
Sirius took a drink of his tea to clear his mind and his throat. “I’m afraid I’m not sure what you asked. I was a bit distracted.”
“What was distracting you?” You tilted your head to the side, forcing a concerned expression onto your face.
He blinked. “Just-- I was just wondering if that was my…”
Sirius visibly swallowed as you tied your hair up in a messy bun, your shirt rising up to expose the strawberry print of your red underwear.
“I was just wondering,” he started again, finally releasing the breath he didn’t know he was holding once you placed your arms back down to your sides, “if that was my shirt you were wearing.”
You glanced down at the comfy, oversized t-shirt that was on you body before looking back up at Sirius. “Yes, I-- It ended up in my laundry basket after the wash and I was going to return it, but it looked so warm and inviting and-- I’m sorry, I’ll just change if--”
Your words died in your throat, startled.
“Sorry,” Sirius said, having the decency to look slightly embarrassed. Much more calmly, he continued, “It’s fine. The shirt looks much better on you that it ever did on me.”
That’s highly debatable, you thought.
“Thank you. I-I’ll be sure to return it, anyways,” you replied. Turning back around, you realized you were still in front if the refrigerator, no jam in hand. “But back to the question.”
“Strawberry or grape?”
Feeling a gaze set intensely on the back of your thighs, you heard a raspy voice choke out, “Strawberry.”
- - - - -
STEP 2: “Accidentally” brush up against him. Multiple times.
“It drives boys crazy,” Lily confirmed with a mischievous grin. “You already have Sirius wrapped around your finger. Just graze his bicep, chest, thigh--anywhere, really--and you’ll have him completely under your spell.”
Sirius was sitting in the living room in contentment, a tab in his laptop playing cute dog videos, when you slid next to him on the couch.
“Hey, there,” you chirped, taking some of his blanket and draping it over your legs. “What are you up to?”
Sirius shifted slightly so you fit comfortably by his side. “Just watching some quality dog videos on this fine Saturday night.”
“Slow down, Mr. Thrill-Seeker. I don’t think I can keep up.”
He chuckled, pausing the video and turning to you. “Not the first time I’ve heard that. But, trust me-- I bet you could.”
You raised an eyebrow at his implication, but brushed it off. As Sirius closed his laptop and placed it to the side, he grabbed the television remote and draped an arm around you.
You froze. You were supposed to put him on edge with just a touch, but so far he was the one leaving you breathless without even trying.
It wasn’t fair.
“Want to watch a movie?”
“Sure,” you said. “What movie?”
Logging onto Netflix, Sirius scrolled down the homepage. “Well, I was going to suggest a nice romantic comedy--”
“But--” he interrupted, a smirk forming on his face, “since you decided to tease me for watching puppy videos, I say we watch something to give Miss Adrenaline-Junkie her fix.”
You bit the inside of your bottom lip, eyes flickering to the horror section of Netflix that was enlarged on screen. You didn’t hate horror movies, per se. Oh, definitely not. In fact, you rather enjoyed feeling like you wanted to both shit yourself and vomit from fright at the same time.
What could be better?
“That’s thoughtful of you, but really--” You laughed nervously. “That won’t be necessary.”
“I insist, darling.”
Sirius browsed through the selections briefly before picking a movie that sounded the most terrifying.
An unsettling feeling flooded your stomach as you hugged your knees to your chest. You were vaguely aware of his right arm still wrapped around you while you attempted to hide yourself under the blanket.
“Hey!” Sirius exclaimed, lowering your arms so you were able to see the screen. “No being a spoilsport. You can pick the next movie.”
“Great, I’ll make sure to pick one you hate.”
“I try.”
You gave him a wry smile which he returned with a ruffle of your hair. Turning your attention back towards the movie, you gasped as the doll moved on screen. As the girl walked closer and the music grew louder, you felt yourself curling into Sirius for protection. His muscles under your hand tensed ever so slightly, but you paid it no mind.
“You okay there?” he asked with an amused tone, craning his neck back to see you halfway hidden behind his back.
“Shh,” you said, holding a finger up to your lips, “shields don’t talk.”
Sirius chuckled and you felt a deep vibration course through his body. “My apologies, darling.”
You sniffed. “If you change the movie, all will be forgiven.”
“Where’s the fun in that?”
Huffing, you turned your attention back to the screen. Amidst the sudden jumps and muffled gasps caused by the events of the film, you found yourself inching closer and closer to Sirius.
First, it started with your hand on his bicep. Then, his arm progressively hooked around your side as yours migrated to his thigh. Finally, it led to the position you were in now-- Your head resting against his chest and his arm draped over the dip in your waist.
“Comfortable yet?” Sirius murmured as you burrowed your head in the crook of his neck. His voice sounded like a soft whisper behind your ear and you felt the heat rise up to your cheeks.
“Almost,” you said teasingly. You continued to wiggle just to get a rise from him, shifting ever so slightly until you felt Sirius stiffen beneath you.
You turned to him, startled.
He placed his hands on your hips, firmly planting you in place as his the tip of his pinky brushed the exposed skin of your upper thigh.
You tensed.
“For the sake of watching the movie without any unwanted visits to the bathroom, I suggest you stop moving your hips like that,” said Sirius, his voice breathy and low.
Sirius gestured to his lower region before returning his grasp on your hip, which was dangerously close to his more sensitive areas.
You cleared your throat, looking away. “Oh.”
Drawing your attention away from the fact that you were seconds close to giving Sirius Black a boner, you hummed.
“You know, it’s not my fault that thing of yours is so sensitive,” you remarked, trailing the tip of your index finger in circles on his forearm.
“That thing of mine?” he repeated with a barking laugh, a grin on his face as he captured your fingers between his.
You nodded.
“It’s not sensitive,” defended Sirius. “It’s just on high alert. Especially when an attractive young lady decides she wants to use you as her pillow.”
Rolling your eyes, you tried to ignore the way your stomach fluttered when he called you attractive.
“In my defense, if your chest wasn’t meant to be laid on, it wouldn’t have been this comfortable.”
He hummed in amusement and you felt the throaty vibrations from your back. “I suppose you’re right. Though, I have to say, I only let a select few lay on my chest.”
“That select few better be only James and I,” you teased, placing your hand on his pectoral muscle. “I’m not sure how I feel about other girls getting this cuddly with you.”
“Of course it’s only you and James.” Sirius winked. “But the last time James used me as a pillow, he got rather handsy--”
You laughed and he smiled.
“So, perhaps only you should be allowed to lay on my like this.”
“I like the sound if that.”
His arms tightened around you, pulling you flush against his body. You could’ve sworn your insides flipped upside down before returning to their normal position.
“Good,” Sirius mumbled in your ear.
The rest of the movie played, and another one after that. But neither of you paid much attention to anything other than the feeling of you in his arms, and his arms around you.
And you decided there was no place you’d rather be.
As the realization set in, you squeezed your eyes shut. Fuck. You swallowed, eyes fluttering open as Sirius’ thumb rubbed circles centimeters below your navel. You were in deeper than you thought.
- - - - -
STEP 3: Release your inhibitions. (Get piss drunk.)
“Excuse me?” you asked, raising an eyebrow. “Just how exactly can alcohol solve anything?”
“You’d be surprised,” Marlene said, nudging Lily on the arm before sending a wink in your direction. “Trust us.”
It was Saturday night of the following week and the only thing on your mind was how amazing the Tequila Sunrise in front of you looked.
“For me?” You looked up at Sirius, who placed the drink on the table in front of you.
He took a sip from the glass in his hand, raising an eyebrow. “Nah, I just bought it and placed it there to taunt you.”
You grinned, plucking the cherry from the top of the cocktail and popping it into your mouth. “It’s working.”
Wrapping your fingers around the base of the glass, you heard Marlene give an excited squeal.
“Guess who got us shots!” she exclaimed, motioning for the bartender to slide the tray in her direction. “First three rounds are on me.”
There was a collective cheer that sounded from the group as everyone grabbed their first shot glass before Remus glanced at Marlene warily.
“First three rounds?” he repeated, holding the alcohol near his mouth. “Are you trying to get us drunk tonight?”
She winked at him, holding her glass up. “Maybe.”
“Here’s to maybe getting drunk!” James echoed, throwing his drink back as everyone followed suit.
The all too familiar burn of tequila made its way down your throat all the way to your stomach, and you were grateful you had the cocktail Sirius bought you to wash the taste away.
“Goddamn,” you swore, making a face. “All these years and straight liquor still tastes disgusting.”
“Agreed,” said Sirius, making his way next to you. You extended your Tequila Sunrise out and he clicked his glass with yours. “Here’s to our pussy drinks.”  
You laughed in surprise amusement, finishing half your drink in one chug. “Does this mean we’re classy adults now?”
“God, I hope not.”
A handful of shots and a few cocktails later, it was safe to say you were drunk. And not just your average drunk, but a wild, piss drunk that only came from too many shots of the Devil’s juice--tequila.
“Dance with us!” Lily said, bouncing over and pulling you away from Sirius as you gave him an apologetic look. When you were halfway to the dance floor, she grabbed you right above your elbows. “You have to catch Marlene and I up on everything.”
“Yeah,” said Marlene, holding onto Lily to steady herself. “Like what’s up with you and Sirius? You two are normally all gross and cute and touchy, but never this much--”
She broke off with a gasp.
“Don’t tell me,” she started, a ridiculous grin spread across her face as she exchanged glances with the redhead next to her. “Has Operation: More Than Friends been completed without Step 3?”
You shook your head. “No, we’re still just friends--”
“But--” you continued, glaring at Lily for her interruption. “But, I don’t know…” You trailed off, a dreamy smile on your face as you felt the butterflies in your stomach.
“Spill!” Marlene said, jumping up and down when she saw the lovestruck look on your face.
“It just feels different, you know? In a good way.” You ran your hands over your arms, fighting the shivers that came from the draft you stood under. “When we had our movie night, he held me so I was on his chest, and he was telling me how I’m the only person he does this with while stroking my hair. And his hands-- His fucking hands were just everywhere, and-- Ugh! I don’t know.”
You placed your head on Lily’s shoulder in frustration and she rubbed your back soothingly.
“Why are you upset?” she asked, smoothing down the ends of your hair. “Isn’t that a good thing?”
“Yeah!” you said, nodding in agreement. “But then, when we woke up, Sirius just sort of pretended it didn’t happen.”
Marlene’s mouth fell open. ”You’re joking.”
“I wish.” You wiped the pout off your face, trying not to seem too upset as you finished your story. “He never mentioned it or brought it up. And the rest of the week, he was barely there because he was always out with Remus and James-- Or so he said. I think he was just trying to avoid me.”
“What the fuck?” Lily said in disbelief.
“I know.”
Huffing, you glanced over to where the boys sat, all three of them conversing in a huddle similar to your own. At the sight of Sirius with a grin on his face and eyes blazing bright grey, you softened.
“But then, he does stupid shit like buys me drinks, and tells me how beautiful I look, and wraps his arm around my waist, and--” You groaned. “He’s so fucking confusing!”
“Aw, babe,” Marlene comforted, shooting a glare in Sirius’ general direction. “I don’t--”
“Pardon me, ladies,” a voice behind you interrupted. Someone tapped your shoulder and you whirled around. Looking him up and down, you saw a tall figure with curly, blonde hair. “May I have this dance?”
You stared at his extended hand, then glanced back at Lily and Marlene, a hesitant look on your face.
“I don’t think--”
Marlene cut you off, smiling at him sweetly. “Just one moment, please.” She faced you. “Dance with him!”
“What? I thought we were just talking about Sirius. The guy I like! Remember him?”
“The guy you love who is looking this way? Yeah, I remember him,” she hissed, nudging you. “He obviously likes you back but is too scared to make a real move. And what better catalyst than jealousy?”
“You’re insane,” you said, but with all the alcohol rushing through your bloodstream, you found yourself giving in. You shook your head. “But so am I. So, fuck it.”
She grinned as you took the stranger’s hand, wrapping it around your waist as you went deeper into crowd. As the beat of the music picked up, he turned you around so his abdomen was on your back.
He cupped his hands on the curves of your hips and you held them there with your own, moving to the beat.
Although your bodies were close, there was nothing overtly sexual about your dancing. You were wasted. He was drunk. And everything was all in good fun.
“How am I doing?” he whispered in your ear, a playful lift to his voice.
“Decent, I suppose,” you said jokingly, placing your hands on his neck as you continued to sway your hips.
Finally opening your eyes, you turned your head and saw Lily and James dancing nearby. Cheering as if they could hear you, you continued to look around.
There, at the same spot you left him, sat Sirius, his jaw clenched as his expression remained impassive. Your eyes met and you almost froze before blinking back whatever rational thoughts were in your mind.
You tried to tear your gaze away.
You really did.
But as Sirius downed the rest of his drink and headed to the dance floor, you couldn’t keep your eyes off him.
Fucking alcohol, you cursed, pulling away from your partner as the song ended.
“Is everything alright?” he asked you, holding your hands in his as you turned to face him.
You nodded, giving him a warm hug. “Yes! Thank you for the dance. It was fun.”
“I sense there’s a big ‘but’ about to come.”
“But… There’s this guy I just can’t seem to get my mind off of,” you said softly.
“Oh.” He ran his fingers through his hair, an amused glint lighting up his eyes. “And does that guy happen to be here right now?”
You smiled sheepishly. “Yes. Look, I’m sorry--”
He shook his head dismissively. “Sorry for what? We danced and had fun. We didn’t magically fall in love or get married because of that.”
“No hard feelings?”
“Of course not.”
Examining him with a look of sheer gratitude, you gave him another quick hug before pulling away. You turned back to Sirius’ direction to find he was no longer there.
“Thank you!” you said, waving to your dance partner as he headed back to his friends. “Have a great night.”
“You, too, stranger,” he called with a winked.
Smiling, you headed back to the table to find Sirius. Why, exactly? You weren’t sure. All you knew was he was on your mind all night for a reason, and you would be a fool not to do anything about it.
Sitting down by the bar, you looked around the room for a sign of Sirius.
You scanned the dance floor, eyes passing over Marlene and the pretty brunette she was dancing with, until you spotted Sirius in his stark, white button up.
With his sleeves rolled up his forearms and the slight scruff present on his face, he was certainly a sight you couldn’t miss.
And apparently, others thought so, too.
“One rum and coke, please,” you said to the bartender as you handed him some cash, eyeing Sirius and the girl who placed an arm on his bicep with disdain.
“Here’s your drink, Miss.”
“Thank you.”
Pressing the rim of your glass to your lips, you almost gagged. Your body knew you had just enough--if not, way too much--liquor in you and mixing dark with all the light you’ve been drinking at this hour wasn’t the smartest idea.
But you were too drunk, and too upset to care.
As if he could feel your gaze on his, Sirius turned around, gently taking the girl’s hand off his arm.
When you saw that, your emotions made a complete one-eighty. You did a little happy dance in your seat as you finished half of your drink.
Deciding you were being too immature, even for your level of wasted, you shook your head. But with all the alcohol in your system, a slight wave of nausea settled in your stomach.
“What are you doing, Y/N?”
“Huh?” you murmured, turning sharply as if you were caught red-handed. When you saw his face, you threw your arm over him in a hug. “Sirius!”
Sirius gingerly removed the drink from your hands, glaring at it, before his gaze softened on you. “Are you sure you need another drink, darling?”
Smelling the whiff of rum in the air, you scrunched your nose up, the corners of your lips turning downwards in a pout. “No. I hate drinking.”
“Okay.” He chuckled, letting you lean against him as you stood up.
The feeling of blood and alcohol rushing up to your brain as you stood left you disoriented. You buried your face in his chest, trying to block out the fumes you hadn’t noticed until you were a drink away from throwing up.
“I’m never drinking again, Sirius,” you whimpered, already regretting downing the rum and coke. “I feel so stupid. And trashy. And--”
“Hey, no--” Sirius tilted your head up pressing a finger to your lips. “You’re not stupid. Or trashy. You’re a beautiful, young woman who maybe had too much to drink.”
“Maybe?” you retorted.
You tried standing upright by yourself, but immediately felt discomfort in your insides. He wrapped his arm around your waist to steady you, planting you by his side.
“Okay. Definitely had too much to drink, then.”
“Way too much,” you agreed. By then, you were getting too tired to support your own weight. Attempting not to sound needy, you cautiously said, “Do you want to go home soon?”
Sirius smiled knowingly. “Do you?”
You nodded. “I can just call a cab myself if you want to stay. I don’t want to ruin your night even more.”
“You didn’t ruin my night-- Why would you think that?” he asked, frowning as he slowly led you outside. “And you’re my best friend. I’m not going to let you go home by yourself. C’mere.”
As you wait for a cab outside the bar, Sirius used one hand to rub the goosebumps away from your arm, and the other hand to text your friends.
Sirius: Taking Y/N home. Will you guys be okay?
Remus: Yeah, I didn’t drink too much. I’ll make sure the others are fine.
Sirius: Thanks, Moony.
Marlene: Ooh, Sirius... ;) You’re TAKING HER HOME, huh? Doing the do? Making sweet, sexy love to your lover? Final-fucking-ly.
Sirius: Oh, God.
Remus: Sorry, mate. But I have to agree. Took you guys long enough.
Lily: Use protection, lovebirds! Have fun.
Lily: Hmm, they’re not answering.
Marlene: Do you think they’re already fucking?!
Remus: In the cab…?
James: Is this what being a proud parent is like? :’)
As the cabbie drove you two home, you rested your head on Sirius’ shoulder, trying not to pay attention to how nauseous the bumps in the road made you feel.
“Oh, God-- Are we almost there?” you mumbled into his arm.
“Just a few minutes, darling,” said Sirius softly.
You were all too aware of him stroking his fingers through your hair, smoothing it down as you sighed in contentment. You could’ve stayed like that all night--if it weren’t for the perpetual feeling of having to vomit, that is--but your apartment eventually came into view.
“We’re home,” Sirius told you, handing the cabbie some cash before helping you out of the car.
You tried to stand up on your own, but wobbled in your heels. Sirius laughed, not able to stop himself.
“This is harder than it looks, okay?” You pouted, refusing his arm that was extended for support. “You try strutting your drunk ass in heels, and then you can talk.”
Grinning, he lifted you up into his arms, carrying you bridal style. “I was only laughing because of how adorable you looked. Like a baby penguin.”
“Every girl dreams of being compared to a baby penguin,” you muttered under your breath, nestling into Sirius’ chest as he opened the door of the flat.
“Glad I could make your dreams come true, then.”
Taking a step into the living room, Sirius collapsed on the couch in an exaggerated manner, you still in his arms as he placed you on his lap. His thumb rubbed circles into your outer thigh, boosting your confidence.
“I have more dreams you can make come true,” you jested, shooting him a wink.
“I’d be happy to help.”
Sirius ran his tongue over his bottom lip and, suddenly, you were paying distinct attention to his mouth. Your eyes zeroed in on him as he captured his reddened, lower lips between his teeth.
You wished it were yours.
He was so close, you could feel the rhythm of his breathing pick up. The scent of pine and mint filled your lungs as you drew nearer-- Your lips right in front of his. If you were to say just one word, your mouth would brush against his skin and--
Your eyes fluttered open at his words, lips retracting from the pucker they were in. You pouted, crossing your arms across your chest as you sat still in Sirius’ lap.
“What?” you asked, glaring at Sirius when he grinned at your disappointed expression. He continued to stare at you. “Is there something in my teeth?”
Sirius shook his head, the same lovesick expression on painted on his face. “No. You’re just really pretty.”
Now, normal, sober you would probably be a blushing, stuttering mess. But with the hefty amount of liquid courage in your system, you decided to press him some more.
“If you think I’m so pretty, why won’t you kiss me?
Sirius laughed, ruffling your hair as you swatted his hands away. “Because, darling. You’re drunk.”
You frowned. “I may be drunk, but that doesn’t change the fact that I’ve liked you for months now.”
“What did you just say?”
Giggling at the look on his face, you held your finger up to his lips. “I said I like you. But you didn’t hear that from me, okay?”
He blinked. “I-- Okay?”
“I think I’ve liked you for a while now,” you admitted. “But I don’t think you like me back.”
Sirius lifted your crestfallen face, tilting it back so your eyes met his. His thumb stroked your jawline, his touches so soft you almost shivered.
“Why would you think that?”
“Lots of reasons.” You shrugged, disregarding his look of regret. “You brought a girl home a few weeks ago. You avoided me the whole past week after our movie night. And-- Well, the thing that happened just now.”
“And what exactly happened just now?”
“You didn’t kiss me.”
Sirius’ hand still cupped your face and you felt yourself leaning into it. You blinked, staring at him. He had really pretty eyelashes… You had the sudden urge to reach out and stroke them.
He caught your hand before you touched him, lacing his fingers through yours. Sirius gave them a brief kiss before releasing his hold on you. You made your way off his lap, sitting beside him as you drank the bottle of water you found on the couch.
“First off, I’m sorry I made you feel that way,” he said, gazing at you so intently you knew he had to be sincere. “That girl I brought home-- There’s no excuse for it--”
Your face fell.
He lifted it back up.
“But we didn’t do anything more than kiss. Again-- I know it’s no excuse, but it was a few days after we slept together and I couldn’t get you out of my head. I thought if I could forget about you for a night, the feelings would stop.” Sirius breathed out a laugh. “But I was foolish for thinking I could make it through an hour without you crossing my mind.”
You tried to stop the smile from taking over your face, glancing down at your lap as you tucked a stray piece of hair.
“And last week,” he continued, smoothing down the strand, “I wasn’t avoiding you. I was gone a lot because-- Well, because I was getting advice from James and Remus.”
“Yeah.” Sirius bit his lip nervously, rubbing the back of his neck. “I wanted to ask you out next week, but I needed help planning.”
“Planning?” You felt like a parrot.
“Yes, planning,” he chuckled. “I wanted to ask you out in a special way-- With roses and fireworks and candles and all the romantic things you deserve.”
You felt heat rise up to your cheeks and you were glad there was already a flush on your face from drinking.
“Oh,” you said. That wasn’t the answer you were expecting. “So that’s why you’ve been missing all week.”
“Okay.” You grinned. Sirius Black wanted to ask you out-- How could you not smile? “But you didn’t answer my last question.”
Sirius quirked an eyebrow. “And what was your last question?”
You shrugged. “Why won’t you kiss me?”
He laughed, running his thumb along the bottom of your pouting lip. You jumped. “Because you’re drunk and I don’t want to you to anything you might regret.”
Placing both of your hands on either side of his face, you stared at him intently. Amused, Sirius placed his hand over yours, the warmth instantly flooding your cool fingertips.
“I’m sober enough to know I want to kiss you,” you said, as if it were the simplest thing in the world. “And I know I won’t regret it. You could even kiss me again tomorrow, if you’re so worried.”
Sirius’ eyes twinkled as they flickered to your mouth. “Tomorrow, huh?”
“Yes,” you stated in a matter-of-fact tone. Perhaps you weren’t being as obvious as you though. “Tomorrow. When I’m your girlfriend.”
He let out a shocked laughed. “My girlfriend?”
You nodded.
After getting over his initial surprise, Sirius cocked his head to the side. “Are you serious about wanting to be my girlfriend?”
“As serious as a heart attack.”
“Hmm. Girlfriend,” he said slowly, testing how the word rolled off his tongue. He smiled when your expression lit up. “I quite like the sound of that.”
You beamed, unable to stop yourself. “Me, too.”
“Well, I suppose it would just be plain wrong not to kiss my girlfriend,” Sirius contemplated.
“It was be very wrong,” you agreed, scooting closer to him.
“I guess we have to make it right, then.”
Before you knew it, you were back on his lap and his lips met yours. Shivers ran up your spine as Sirius pressed his hand against your lower back, pushing your body closer to his. You eased into the kiss, caressing the stubble on his face with one hand while the other tangled itself into his hair.
You ran your tongue along his lower lip, gently nipping the spot with your teeth. Sirius made a sound at the back of his throat as your tongue met his, sucking in a sharp breath as you dug your hips onto his lap, straddling him.
His hands made their way to your hair, tugging it lightly as you arched into him. Sirius kissed you until your head felt like it was spinning.
Everything about him consumed you. His touch. His scent. His taste.
No one else had kissed you like that before.
And you doubted you would want anyone else to after this.
You pulled away to catch your breath, leaning your forehead on his as a dazed grin broke across his face. Sirius tucked a strand of hair behind your ear, your skin burning in his wake.
“Why did it take us this long to admit we like each other?” asked Sirius after the prolonged silence of heavy breathing after a deep kiss.
You laughed, resting your hands on the back of his neck as you sat upright. “Because we’re two dummies who were too afraid to admit their feelings.”
“What idiots we were,” he said with an amused shake of his head. Sirius ran his thumb across your reddened lip, tempting you to plant your mouth on his once more. “I’m not afraid anymore, though.”
“Me, neither,” you agreed.
Sirius continued to brush his thumb against your already sensitive lips and you wondered what he would do if you were to nip it. You blinked.
Without thinking, you held his face in your hands and peppered staccato kisses on his cheeks, forehead, and lips.
His own mouth caught yours as he planted a chaste kiss on them. “What are you doing to me, darling?”
“I’m kissing you as fast as I can,” you said teasingly. “Don’t we have to make up for lost time?”
“Nope,” he replied, pressing his lips softly against the tip of your nose. Sirius laced his fingers through yours, eyes lighting up his face as he smiled. “We have all the time in the world now.”
And as you sat there in his arms, you supposed Sirius was right after all.
It took time, tears, and effort to get to where you were-- There, next to Sirius, as his girlfriend. But this feeling was worth every step of the way.
And they lived happily ever after…? ;)
Okay, if you stuck around for this rollercoaster of a “one shot,” I send you lots of hugs and kisses. I loved some parts, hated others. But, in the end, I’m frankly just too lazy to change the parts I disliked. So this is what we have. LOL. Maybe when I reread this fic to edit, I won’t be so hard on myself, heh.
Also, if you want to be a darling, you should definitely let me know: What was your favorite step of the plan? ;) I like Step 2 the most because it’s just goals. But also realistic enough that it might actually happen? Gives me hope. :P
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the-mermaid-typist · 2 years ago
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Please be gentle with your first drafts; they are the way they are because this is the first time you've ever written those scenes, chapters, etc. Some concepts you thought of literally moments ago. Of course they're not going to be perfect or come out exactly the way you wanted. There will always be more time to perfect them, though, so just keep writing and have as much fun as you can!
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ao3commentoftheday · a month ago
I want to write more and post more, but everytime I do and just get like 4 comments or 50 kudos on the posted fic, I just spiral down in demotivation. I know the statistics don't say anything but I just can't help it. I suffer from ADHD so blocking out that dopamine reward boost is really hard for me. I still write tho. I keep posting, but after seeing the responses I get demotivated, then I get motivated again by coming up with a new WIP and hope that one will hit better, but it doesn't, rinse and repeat. I just wish I could REALLY write for myself and not constantly feel like I'm not good enough and not constantly seek out the validation for my work from simple kudos and comments.
I also need rewards to keep me doing a task, and when it comes to fics I've found my own best method is finding different rewards.
Comments and kudos depend on the actions of others. You have no control over those actions, and there's no way to predict them. They can't be depended upon. Not to mention, there's also the problem where, over time, you need more and more comments and kudos in order to get the same impact you used to get from less.
Some rewards that have worked for me are:
having cheer readers (people who read my fic before I post it and give me the loving commentary I'm looking for)
writing with a co-author so that I have constant feedback on my own writing and someone else to get me past a hurdle if I find myself stuck
tracking different statistics that also make the numbers part of my brain light up. Things like word count or chapter count or days in a row spent writing. Those are all numbers that I can control, and not someone else.
having scenes in mind for later in my story and waiting to write them until I get to that point. If I write all of the fun stuff up front, I know I'll never write the rest.
What about the rest of you? Do you have goals that you aim for? How do you deal with demotivation?
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katsuhera · 4 months ago
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pairing: bakugou katsuki x f!reader wc: 2.9k tw/warnings: pornstar!reader, pornstar!bakugou, unprotected sex, solo masturbation, creampie, nsfw (18+) a/n: honestly, i had to do some research into the porn industry and even then i’m not entirely sure of how accurately i portrayed the scenes, so please forgive me! i had a lot of fun writing this, even though so much of it was written last minute HAHA but i hope you all enjoy!! ALSO THE HAPPIEST OF BIRTHDAYS TO MISS JO @lady-bakuhoe​ !! i hope this bakugou filth makes you happy and that you have the most amazing of days 🥺💖
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“wait, so who am i shooting with today?” you asked your manager.
“bakugou katsuki,” he responded, giving you a knowing look.
“you aren’t seriou–there’s no way you told me this earlier,” you huffed, your eyebrows furrowing. “i would not have agreed to this if i knew.”
“uhh, yeah, that may have been why i kinda mumbled his name when you were listening to me,” he said apologetically. “can i get you a coffee?”
you stood glaring at him, contemplating your options. “how much am i getting paid for this again?”
you pinched the bridge of your nose, inhaling deeply. why him? you thought, pissed. bakugou was an actor you’d never shot with before, but you’d heard way too many tales of his shitty behavior and attitude on set. you were hoping that you’d be able to go the rest of your porn career without having to be on the receiving end of said attitude.
“next time, tell me, okay?”
“sorry, y/n, you’re right. but his videos do make a lot of money–”
“i know. but if he’s a dick to me, it’s your job to punch him. can you do that for me?” you asked, crossing your arms.
you sighed, waving your hand. “ugh, i’m kidding. it’s fine. the money’s good. it’s whatever.”
you were already mentally preparing yourself for meeting him–the infamous bakugou katsuki. so famous and adored by his fans but so hated by your fellow actresses. was he hot? sure. was he good at the craft? definitely. but was he an asshole? for sure.
“what’s the scenario again?” you asked, curious.
“typical ‘roommate walking in on you masturbating,’” your manager replied. “are you uncomfortable with it?
“nah, it’s not that–i was just wondering how i should prepare myself,” you said.
“getting ready to shoot in three minutes!” one of the production assistants called out, and a stylist hurried over to you, mascara wand in hand.
“sorry again, y/n,” your manager apologized. “hope it goes alright, though.”
“yeah, don’t worry about it,” you said, smiling reassuringly. “it’s just porn.”
you looked around, trying to catch a glimpse of bakugou before the shoot started, but he was nowhere to be found. you shrugged, figuring that he was probably around and that he’d show up in time for his part. the shoot was going to start off just with you, anyway.
you actually preferred scripts that featured solo masturbation; you’d experienced way too many moments in which an actor was actually kinda fucking awful, and you’d have to fake the living hell out of your moans to satisfy the director.
you started filming once you were ready, getting into it with ease as you dipped your fingers below the waistband of your panties, feeling the slickness of your arousal gather around your fingers.
you closed your eyes, letting yourself forget about the cameras and bystanders as your other hand massaged at your breast, rolling your nipple between your fingers. light, breathy moans escaped you, and you could feel an orgasm slowly but surely start to build in your core.
i wonder when his part comes in, you thought briefly, but not bothering to open an eye and peek to see. the director would probably make you re-shoot that if you did, anyway. what’s the script like again? i get myself off and he walks in on me? then what?
you let your questions swirl around in your head as you continued your ministrations, gradually getting yourself more and more worked up. honestly, at this pace, you might even be able to cum before bakugou even enters the set.
“oi, what’s this?” a gruff voice sounds.
you cast your eyes open in mock surprise, clutching at the nearby blanket yet doing nothing to cover yourself as bakugou comes forward, a bored expression on his face.
“h-haven’t you ever heard of knocking!?” you exclaimed, scuttling backwards on the bed.
“i did knock, princess, but you didn’t hear me,” he said, scoffing. “you were busy.”
was that even on the script? fuck am i supposed to say to that? you thought, fighting back the urge to tell him off.
instead, you merely tried to cover yourself up with the hem of the blanket, hoping he would hurry up and get the scene over with.
he stood at the edge of the bed, letting his eyes trail over your figure, his cock beginning to harden and tent in his sweats.
“are you just gonna stand there?” you asked, your mind blanking on the script dialogue.
“are you just gonna lay there?” he mocked, coming closer slowly.
“w-what do you mean?”
“you should help me, princess,” he said devilishly, coming onto the bed and slowly caging you in by his arms. “what if i go and tell everyone what i caught you doing?”
you fake whimpered, hoping your acting was enough to pass the director’s standards.
“please don’t,” you simpered, lightly clutching onto the fabric of his shirt.
“i won’t if you do as i say.” in one swift motion, he slid his arm under your back and flipped your bodies, so that you suddenly ended up straddling his hips.
… i don’t remember hearing or reading about this happening, you thought in slight alarm, but none of the people off set seemed perturbed, so you let it go.
“ride me,” he continued, looking at you expectantly. god, it was just something about that cocky fucking face that made you despise him, made you believe all the nasty rumors about him without much of a second thought. but it was also something about that cocky fucking face that made you surprisingly want to obey him, please him, make him call you a good little girl.
heat rose to your face as you cast your eyes downward, trying to avoid eye contact. you meekly raised your hips and pushed your panties to the side as you pulled the waistband of his sweats down, exposing his cock, red and swollen at the tip.
you cursed yourself for being so obedient towards him. do it just for the coin, girl. get your nut and get off the set. this is just porn.
you made sure to keep a hesitant and innocent expression on your face, acutely aware of the camera placements. a large hand slid up your thigh to your hip, and he squeezed the soft flesh out of impatience.
“you said you would do what i told you to,” he rasped, harshly smacking the side of your ass.
a soft yelp escaped from your throat, and you nodded, using your hand to pump his length softly before sliding him along your entrance.
the feeling of your arousal coating his cock caused bakugou’s entire body to stiffen, and his grip on your hip tightened until his knuckles turned white. you hated to admit it too, but the dragging of his veins along your lips made your core ache with want.
he’d had enough of your teasing, and he lifted your hips forcefully to place you right on top of him, relishing the soft oh! that fell from your lips as he suddenly filled you up.
bakugou grunted, his head starting to swim because of how warm and wet you felt around him, your walls stretching to fit around his size. you winced slightly from the pain and shock, but you were adjusting quickly, and you found yourself automatically starting to bounce on top of him, letting your breasts bounce enticingly in front of his face.
he strained mentally, trying to keep himself from being too vocal, but fuck were you making it difficult for him. he’d never had someone so tight, so fucking hot in all his years of experience in the industry. sex had become something mundane–not ever like a chore, really, but not as enjoyable as it used to be for him. and that’s what made it so easy for him to continue working in porn; he treated shoots like menial everyday tasks, knowing that he looked good and got a shit ton of views, so he could afford to be a dick if he so pleased.
but you were giving him a taste of something he hadn’t realized he’d missed.
it was something about the way you glared at him in spite of all the practiced fake facial expressions you gave to the camera. he could tell that you didn’t like him, and something about that glint in your eyes made him want to fuck it out of you, fuck you absolutely dumb and senseless until you couldn’t help but beg for more, beg for him.
your little movements were cute, but he wanted more. his other hand slid to your shoulder, his thumb pressing into the indent of your collarbone as he held you upright, thrusting into you roughly from below. lewd sounds of skin slapping skin filled the air, and you could feel the cameraman panning in closer, causing you to subconsciously arch your back.
all of the scornful, hateful thoughts you had earlier seemed to flee your mind, leaving you feeling dazed and hazy. the only thing even remotely grounding you was the sensation of his hips slamming into yours, his blonde fuzz grazing your clit with each deliberate thrust. his hand crept closer and closer to your neck until he was firmly grasping it, leaving you gasping for air and spots in your vision.
you looked down at him contemptuously, as if despising the fact that he was even able to make you feel this way. to no avail, you attempted to suppress the growing tension in your core, but you knew deep down that there was no avoiding it. despite all of your premonitions about him, your body was all too pliant in his hands.
just the way he wanted it.
he’d never fucked anyone so passionately, so determinedly as how he was now fucking you. of course, you wouldn’t have known it, but truly there was something about your eyes that made him resolute in pleasuring you. he ached to feel you cum on his cock, to feel you unravel and submit.
one particularly hard thrust upwards sent jolts up your spine, and your walls clenched around his cock as you bordered your climax.
“come on baby, cum for me, won’t you?” bakugou asked, bringing his thumb down to rub circles into your clit. that was all you could take, and you collapsed over his torso, clutching frantically to his hair and chest as you spasmed around him.
without further hesitation, he flipped your bodies, smoothly lifting your legs to rest on his shoulders as he continued to mercilessly pound into you.
your eyes were open, but you could barely see–a pair of mocking crimson eyes was all that you could make out. your breasts spilled out from the bottom hem of your crop top, giving him a delicious view. god, you looked so fucking beautiful like that–yielding and submissive at his touch, the only thing hinting otherwise being that glare in your eyes.
but even then, that glare was slowly losing its light. your eyes were half-lidded, and your gaze was becoming increasingly unfocused as your orgasm washed over you.
your breath caught in your throat when you could feel a second climax quickly approaching. part of you wanted desperately for him to stop, to give you a break, but the other half of you was thriving, hopeful that this high would last forever.
bakugou was surprised to feel his own orgasm quickly building, but he fought to hold it back. he, too, was highly aware of the people in the room and the cameras surrounding the bed, but he wasn’t fucking you for the shoot anymore. he was fucking you solely with the goal of making you unable to forget him, unable to have another orgasm without thinking of him and his fucking cock.
“fuck, so tight still,” he groaned, throwing his head back in pleasure. “i know you can cum again for me, princess.”
your mouth moved, but no sound came from your throat. you merely stared up at him, your forehead creased as each thrust forced more breath out of you.
bakugou lowered himself down onto his forearms, bringing his lips down to ghost over yours, and for a second your mind became crystal clear.
is he… about to kiss me? you thought incredulously. he’s known for not kissing in any of his videos, so why–
your thoughts were promptly interrupted as he stole the breath from you, taking advantage of your parted lips and pushing his tongue past your entrance, forcing it to dance with your own.
his mouth was hot on yours, forcing your lips wider open as he effectively stupefied you, wiping your mind blank of any thoughts.
he picked up the pace, bucking into you hard and quick, and soon enough you were moaning into his mouth, arching into his chest as you reached your second high.
tears started to glisten at your lower lash line as your cunt was overwhelmingly overstimulated, but bakugou was relentless, starting to fully chase his own orgasm.
you reached around his torso to grasp at his mid-back, leaving angry red marks where your nails clawed at the flesh. he didn’t mind, though, barely feeling any pain. the only things he was even remotely aware of was the taste of your fruit-flavored chapstick and the way your walls had been continuously convulsing around him, as if begging him to not leave.
you wrapped your arms around his lower back, pressing him deeper into you, eliciting a low growl in response.
“don’t do that–” he groaned, his own breath hitching in his throat.
“want–more,” you managed to choke out, disregarding everything you’d said about him earlier. he just felt too fucking good inside you–you wanted, needed to feel him fill you up, ravish you with everything he had.
you’d barely said a word up until then, and he was sure you two’d gone off-script early on, but he couldn’t find it in himself to care. he was so, so painfully close, yet he was doing all he could to hold on just a while longer, to make you feel good, to keep feeling this–
“fuck,” he hissed, his cock twitching violently inside you as he came, white spurts of cum painting your walls. without thinking, you leaned upwards, meeting his lips once more with your own, stifling his guttural little mewls as he let himself go.
you’d done it almost automatically, as if your body was acting on impulse, yet it felt so unbelievably right. you were drunk on his touch, on his smell, on the feeling of his lips on yours and though you could feel him softening inside you, you didn’t want it to end.
bakugou nearly collapsed on top of you, leaving his cock inside of you to twitch in unison with your spent hole, your combined fluids leaking out and onto the bed.
“cut! good job, you two,” the director called out, and immediately you were brought back to the reality of the situation. it was as you had said before–just porn. it was just porn, so… why were you suddenly feeling so empty?
you tiredly looked at bakugou’s face, just inches from yours, his cheek glistening with a slight sheen of sweat. part of you had an urge to stroke it, to entangle your fingers in his soft hair.
but you repressed the urge, attributing it to some post-orgasm craze.
bakugou kept his eyes closed, unsure of his ability to not pull you into his chest if he saw your face that close to his. here you were, some pornstar that he hadn’t even really known of before–his manager handled all his bookings–yet he had this desire to hold you, massage you, take care of you. he had no clue why, though–this is just porn, right?
right, this is just porn, you thought, trying to ignore the small lump in your throat that had risen at the thought.
“good job, y/n!” your manager called out, coming towards you with some clothes and a towel. “take the rest of the day to relax.”
“ah, thank you,” you mumbled, awkwardly untangling your body from bakugou’s. he unwillingly got up, facing the other way, probably in pursuit of his own manager.
“was it bad?” your manager whispered, looking curiously at bakugou’s retreating figure.
“no no, it was fine,” you replied quietly, wrapping yourself with the towel. “it’ll be nice to rest, though.”
he nodded understandingly, packing up the rest of your belongings. “well, i’ll take you home then. call me later if you need anything.”
you smiled gratefully, pulling on the hoodie he’d given you.
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later that night, you found yourself still thinking about him, goosebumps seemingly permanently raised along areas he’d touched.
this is so fucking stupid, you thought, annoyed. you leaned your elbow along the edge of the bathtub, careful to not knock over your laptop. you’d hoped that a hot bath and an episode of your favorite show would get your mind back to normal, but even that wasn’t enough.
irritated, you scrolled through twitter, mindlessly reading through your feed when a message from an unknown number popped up at the top right corner.
bakugou: is this y/n? this is bakugou katsuki
your heart pounded in your chest, and your fingers almost immediately swiped to your messages tab.
is this real? how’d he get my number?
bakugou: hope this isn’t a bad time. got your number from our managers.
hesitant, you lifted your hand to the keyboard, pausing to think of a response.
you: hi, yes it’s me bakugou: sent a voice message
a voice message? what the fuck? you thought, wondering if you were even mentally prepared for whatever he sent.
“i couldn’t stop thinking about you. can we talk?”
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masterlist | join my taglist! | tip jar!
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taglist: @duvkelly @asterroidd​​ @redsharksimp @idontlikeyourjob​ @marinwestward @oiitsemily @mantwftr @obvsroki @officialhangezoe @xnorthstar3x​ @yehawnana @tamakisan​ @snhoe​ @softhandz​ @random-fanfiction​ @theydy-madamonsieur​ @todarokislut @devilgirlcrybabiey​ @simplybakugou​ @amaejiki​ @ochakoakabane​ @lilithbasically​ @peachysimp​ @instantnuma​ @bokutosworld​ @philthepegacorn​​ @shisoaya​​ @annexerca​
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broship-addict · 2 years ago
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final piece for the @aftgbigbang!!! it’s the first scene from @exy-courts/@vophius’ amazing college au which you should all check out!!!
also a massive thanks to @defractum for organizing all of this, i had so much fun
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Okay, this is just crap writing, where all logic is abandoned to have a surprise/fun effect.
Tyrion has been:
Son of Tywin Lannister, and consequently heir to Lannisport and Protector of the West
Brother of the Queen
Ad-interim Hand of the King under Joffrey Baratheon
Supposed murderer of King Joffrey Baratheon
Murderer of Tywin Lannister, Hand of the King, Lord of Lannisport and Protector of the West
Hand of the Queen under Daenerys Targaryen
Former husband of the Queen in the North
Currently Hand of the King under King Brandon The Broken
So beside the sake of a stupid joke, this scene makes no sense
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ufficiosulretro · 3 years ago
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Reaper76Week 2018 || Day 7: “Depth of relationship” (shared lifetime/togetherness) Day 1 || Day 2 || Day 3 || Day 4 || Day 5 || Day 6 || Day 7
@lilized: Whoooo! Can you believe we did it?! BECAUSE I CAN’T. Thank you all for sticking with us ‘till now and for your patience. To make amends for the extra time we thought about a juicy bonus scene, set between Day 6 and 7.
It’ll take a little while, cause we only just started working on it, but I think you’ll love it.
There are really no words for how great this experience was for me, working with Irene, seeing my stupid words brought to life in such an extraordinary was incredible.
@ufficiosulretro: When we first started to work on this comic, we discovered that we couldn’t figure anything detailed to tell about Day 7’s theme, since Jack and Gabe were just at the beginning of their story together. We struggled a lot before to surrender to the concept that it wasn’t necessary to tell anything specific to suggest what we all already know about these guys, such as how they fought side by side and loved each other for a lifetime.
In this update we also reveal you the title we thought for this comic, No One Else, and how much Livia and I love to use Jack’s or Gabriel’s quotes to name our comics, you don’t have idea. Ahah!
I think I could say the same: I can’t believe we made it.
Pretty late, as usual, like for everything in my life, but I’m glad I was able to finish a project in a relatively short time. It’s something that really helps out noticing your progresses in something, no matter what (art, writing, studying, anything.) It has not happened in a long and I was definitely starting to give up on some major projects for this exact reason, feeling stuck like I was right about to get into some sort of artblock... again.
We will soon post the full comic for you to see and share and, as @lilized already mentioned, an extra scene. In the meantime, I hope you enjoyed the ride! Nothing of this would have been as fun and brilliant and cool if Livia hadn’t wrote such fantastic story and dialogues, suggested the best ideas and pointed the perfect corrections.
We worked so well together. :’)
Thank you, thank you a lot for every kind word you spent to let us know how much you liked our work. Despite the suffering of making comics, writing or drawing in general, making this comic and drawing or writing about Jack and Gabriel is always fun and brightens our life.
(But a little more of lore would be gladly appreciated - dear Jeff, where’s my Omnic Crisis Event, uh? Where is it?!)
(@lilized: Where is it, Jeff?????)
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cinemaocd · a year ago
One of my favorite things about Jane Austen is that when the couple in the book finally reaches their understanding (i.e. gets together), we are given the gift of being privy to the characters in the novel finally being able to speak to one another without reserve. This is the PORN, the SMUT of Jane Austen. This is the payoff. It’s Darcy telling Elizabeth “What do I not owe you! You taught me a lesson, hard indeed at first, but most advantageous. “ ; it’s Marianne and Elinor being able to finally talk about Willoughby and Marianne admitting she was wrong and unjust to Elinor; it’s Wentworth asking Anne if she would have married him a year after she broke off their engagement, when he got his promotion and his fortune.
One of the reasons that adaptations are often so disappointing is that they feel the need to invent an ending that’s better than this and give us a Hollywood idea about what women want. Women don’t really want awkward scenes of the couple kissing. We want to hear the man say he was wrong and the woman was right all along.    
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