#so she’d draw him the puppets
one of today’s feel good moments was when a mum of one of my students (who has adhd and autism) talked to me this morning and was SO excited that for the first time ever, she’d booked a single parent/teacher meeting time because she felt like that was all that was necessary for him 🥺
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Higurashi Month 2021, Day 10: Knowing How
The art of trap-setting was a complex and intricate one. It wasn’t just simply setting up and tripwire and hoping for the best.
No, Satoko knew that to achieve the things that she had achieved –to soar to the heights that she had reached– you needed to be more than merely good at traps. To become the God-Sent Master of Traps herself, you needed complex planning, a firsthand knowledge of the laws of physics, a smidgen of math, and heaps and heaps of social psychology.
Take Keiichi, her favorite victim. Now, it’d be satisfying to fling a tripwire his way, hang an eraser in the gap of the carefully-cracked sliding door, spread an inkstone under his area of impact, but she couldn’t be so sloppy. For one, Keiichi was learning to expect her traps, so she’d have to outfox him, throw a series of bluffs and double-bluffs his way until he was thoroughly bewildered and bewhuthered. Then she could spring her final, actual traps, the ones she meant to catch him in.
But it wasn’t as simple as even that, oh no!
After all, she shared this classroom with everyone else, and they all used the same door. If Satoko wanted to avoid drawing the anger of everyone else in class, she needed to avoid catching anyone except the person she meant to catch in her traps –which very often meant leaving them until the very last minute, which included an element of time pressure on her setting up and cautious testing. After all, even though her traps rarely involved moving elements, it’d be so horribly embarrassing if she couldn’t nail her victim due to a switch fail!
No, Satoko worked with snares and springs, things that were pressure-activated or that were simply empty holes covered by a deceptive veneer, things that were arranged just so, like mudpits and inkstones –simple, easy things that a child of eleven could build and arrange. She hadn’t gone to a fancy city school like Keiichi, after all, and she didn’t have a fancy city degree. Satoko worked with stuff that she had experimented with hundreds of times on her special trap mountain, stuff that was very low-tech, because those sorts of traps were the easiest and quickest –and least expensive– to throw together.
After all, she had to get her materials from somewhere, and even though she went dumpster-diving with Rena often enough in the trash heaps, there were still things –like rope– that she didn’t want to get secondhand, things that might be weakened by exposure to the elements. She had to get those things out of her own allowance, because the people in Hinamizawa weren’t about to lend a neighborly bit of this or that which was floating around their garden shed, not to a Hojo. And besides, Satoko hated asking for those things, since she was using them for her traps and not anything long-lasting or important.
Not that traps weren’t important.
A finished trap was a masterpiece of timing, forethought, physics, and psychology, and there was a reason she got so tetchy when Keiichi dismissed her work as mere pranks. As if any prankster could even come close to what she could do!
No, Satoko had built her throne as the God-Sent Master of Traps out of blood, sweat, tears, and the bodies of her fallen victims, and she would not tolerate any insinuations otherwise. She was diabolical, a devil in little girl’s clothing, and anyone who stepped into her hellish domain would soon regret it, if they were not her friends. Satoko might be small, just a little child, but she could fight tooth and nail with traps rather than any other kind of weapon, ensnaring her foes and making them dance to her tune like little puppets.
Satoko had her place in the Hinamizawa Club, and it was no exaggeration to say that they all would have fallen apart in defeat without her, when the Yamainu came calling.
AN: Me, poking Gou’s school arc with a stick: Hey remember when Satoko had a highly diverse skillset and technical knowledge for days?
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𝐟𝐞𝐛𝐫𝐮𝐚𝐫𝐲 𝐝𝐫𝐚𝐛𝐛𝐥𝐞𝐬, 𝟐𝟎𝟐𝟏
an experiment of posting a drabble a day, from a few sentences to a paragraph or more. i posted them on my old blog, now i’m going to compile them all here !
fingers carefully shift the lavender crystal in betwixt her thin fingers. for years, it had remained faithfully at the base of her throat, the way wolves protect each other’s most delicate parts; her father always did the same. now, there’s somewhere else she’d like to place that power, that protection. what color would the crystal turn, when placed in anakin’s palm ? blue, like his eyes, or red, like the blood he sheds ? the choker she once wore, pastel colored velvet around her neck, has an empty slot where she’d pulled the gem from, and now it finds a new home on a long chain of beskar; where she imagines it will press right in the middle of his chest, beneath his tunic & tabard. no matter what becomes of him, or what tries to hurt him . . . the chain and crystal will remain.
in her mother’s arms, she is just a daughter, a doll. on stage, she is better than a mortal girl, or even the immortal one she became; she’s a ballerina in tufts of pink & tulle. i am a good girl, even now when they’re all in the ground. now that the curtains of earth & velvet have fallen, though, who is she ? who does she become, without the pale pink ribbons & tight bodice of her costumes ? the voice, the visions, the hallucinations seem to answer for her; a ghost, a hazy, obscure daydream who cannot truly exist. who is she ? where does the camouflage, the eagerness to please end ? serena supposes it doesn’t end at all; and in that, she is a russian doll of nothingness.
she’s never seen him without his helmet. no one has, serena imagines — not in this state of his life, where removing it means deprivation and vulnerability; the simple act and thought is filled with an intimacy serena knows she could never earn from him, but … the yearning doesn’t stop, nor does the longing and curiosity to see his pallid skin, scarred & tainted, the marks that must cover his cheeks and chest. where do they end ? are they like ripples in waves or a pattern ? and … when she stands near him, does he ever look at her ? the blackness of his shield hides it all, and it does it’s job in making her nervous; serena can never stand still in his presence, thighs shaking and nails digging trench tracks into her soft palms. darth vader is terrible, awful, even cruel … so what is it that allures her so deeply, and why ? then again, if she knew, perhaps the shimmering butterflies would subside and she could see clearly, see this for what it was. he wasn’t even using her — and she is the very picture of devotion.
to what end does the fae steal a fair maiden ? or is it truly a crime, when the victim is so terribly willing ? allie’s feet move so mesmerizingly, around & around while flowers and mushrooms bloom from beneath her soles; her palm is so open – ❪ come to me, serena ! ❫ perspiration of late summer sticks to serena’s forehead, betwixt her rosy fingers, ❪ 𝙾𝚁 𝙸𝚂 𝚂𝙷𝙴 𝙹𝚄𝚂𝚃 𝙽𝙴𝚁𝚅𝙾𝚄𝚂 ? 𝙰𝙻𝙻𝙸𝙴 𝚃𝙴𝙽𝙳𝙴𝙳 𝚃𝙾 𝙼𝙰𝙺𝙴 𝙷𝙴𝚁 𝙵𝙴𝙴𝙻 𝚃𝙷𝙰𝚃 𝚆𝙰𝚈 … ❫ and without a regret, she lays her hand in the other girl’s. she sups on honeyed milk, gives her name. the fairies covet gold, and what is serena, if not well - dressed in a golden shroud, from her crown to the hem of her long dress ? what does she have to fear, when she is magic all on her own ? allie’s hand lifts both of theirs high as she twirls serena amidst the flowers, and she swears she can feel grass grow from her steps.
calloused fingers dig deep into serena’s sweet, soft dimples; and from her jaw, trickles of sweet wine drip, down her neck, like spilled rubies on her pale skin. you hurt me, she wants to say. you’ve hurt me, and i am the one who’s sorry. hollis draws his thumb down to her chin, leaving perfect smudged fingerprints across her the way one would drag their fingers across a fogged glass. his eyes are a dull, venomous green as he calls her a name that doesn’t belong to her. that isn’t me, serena wants to cry. non, mon rêve, you’re much prettier than she ever was, hollis would reply, because this isn’t the first time. he squeezes bruises into her little arms as he kisses her, and serena thinks she kisses him back.
allow the camera to pan upwards, from her pale pink ballet slippers into her soft cotton dress, her feet turn out in first position as she raises her hands into fourth, pulled up by soft silk strings by an invisible puppeteer. the stage is her church, a massive, all encompassing world of history & grace, and then the world becomes it’s own stage; and serena’s performance is all consumed, like an apple in the garden of eden. isn’t she so lovely, so flawless, our little ballerina ornament ? serena doesn’t know who, or what, controls her actions – her lies, her pliés. some entity who refuses to present themselves, only bothering to choreograph her life & watch her from behind the scenes; she is both fresh as a flower, brought up in springtime, & as broken as skeletons that have long withered to dusk in their caskets. even in her most secluded moments, she does not feel alone – not truly. this puppet master is always watching, writing their script, judging her arches and how gracefully she can slide across the floor in her pointe shoes. when she takes her final bow, it’s only the studio mirror that gazes back at her, her own doelike brown eyes, her own slim form – there’s no cables attaching her to the ceiling.
this life is so very boring, so unlike the dreamy world she longed for as a foolish girl. i had long ruined my own life with my own dissatisfaction before someone else destroyed it for me.
longing lurks deep behind a golden - brown gaze / what comfort can she take in the jedi code, when it’s cold, hard … and ben’s hand is warm, all encompassing ? the code, the code … the temple is a stage, and the council pulls her strings, but the one thing they can’t take from her is her mind; in there, she is strong, stone. they encourage compassion: but no attachments. what is that, to her ? what is it compared to the sunlight she feels in ben’s eyes when he leans down to kiss her temple, or the delight serena can see in him when she enters the room ? ❪ because love is the death of duty, as wiser men say ❫ in many ways, she is greater than other girls; a doll - like padawan, bright, intelligent – but in the end, she is still human, and she finds no love within the code / only does she find the serenity it speaks of in ben’s embrace, and the way he bends over at the waist to hold her, and he is all around her like cologne. that is a glory & a tragedy worth dying for.
fear has always cut deep within serena’s soft skin; it was easy to pull her apart like a pomegranate, see the little pin - prick razors of fright, but nothing had made her so afraid since meeting the jedi. she’s a fragile heart wound tightly in red ribbons and strings, each tied to the pinkie finger of every person she loves. some of the ends are cut, some fray towards the latter, but she doesn’t forget. she doesn’t let go, not in her deep heart, where they are safe. the jedi don’t agree; and her body wracks with guilt as she resists placing ribbons on their fingers. they cannot love me, she knows / so why isn’t it enough to stop her ?
every part of my body aches. serena sits on the hard bathroom floor like a stain on the tile, the tulle of her practice skirt shimmering in the dim fluorescents. the plastic stall divider is freezing against her shoulders, and it hurts when her head falls back against it. the bathroom is empty, but the room is loud. DISGUSTING GIRL. IT HURTS. what hurts ? I CAN’T FIND IT ANYMORE, IT’S SPREAD LIKE A POISON. she finds sanctuary in her own little white lies, and this stall where none of the other ballerinas go – she’s a soloist, a prima; she is special. allegedly. she barely notices the wine - red trickle of blood that spills from her nose, gravity pulling it down her perfect pale face. the relief is nearly instant, whatever ache she’d had seems to fade away / her eyes hone in on the empty plastic bag, only remnants of white pill powder left. the same resin seems to linger on the tip of her pointe shoe, that she’d used to crush it all up. the urge to smash the wooden end of her slipper into the stupid godforsaken plastic container as hard as she can and see how much damage she can do washes over her; but she’s too shocked by the sudden violent urge to act on it. instead, serena lets the clarity & ability to focus drown out the voices that scream in her tender head, and brings herself to stand.
❪ 𝐒𝐈𝐋𝐊 ❫
pink silk shimmers in the early morning sun; her blush is just as pretty, sitting across from her father at the iron balcony table. he is her king, her first love, and serena revels in the attention her father lavishes on her. everything is still so new, so beautiful, when she’s young – serena dreams of the future, of white veils and cotillions. her distance isn’t yet defensive, but a sweet daydream, of romantic notions & hopes. serena dreams of the far away, of paris and rushing crowds. you have the carlisle look, julian had told her, once. your brother has it too. someday, this world will be wrapped around your little finger. be kind to it. serena had smiled so lovely at that – let the world be kind. let it show her kindness.
❪ 𝐈𝐕𝐎𝐑𝐘 ❫
this is a private moment; but serena can feel the hidden camera lenses on her, seeking that million dollar photo of palpable grief, or the bullet hole in her father’s chest, as if it weren’t hidden from view behind his favorite suit. she won’t cry. serena had already emptied herself of every golden tear when she’d cleaned her father’s face, when she’d combed his hair. she was the one who’d laid his arms over his chest, with her favorite stuffed animal between them to keep him company. august pulls all her curls behind her head, and lays his hands on her thin shoulders, squeezing just enough to be a reassurance. a million questions ran through her head – every single one beginning with why.
her fingers drift, softly, for the last time, over her father’s cheek. she pretends it’s warm with life, and not chilling to the bone. if he could be killed, then no one is safe.
❪ 𝐒𝐓𝐄𝐄𝐋 ❫
be kind to the world. serena’s innocence had died screaming, yet she still remembers the words her father had told her. sunlight streams through the trees above, but she is too stiff to move just yet; so she lies there in the grass, flowers having bloomed over the years of her sleep through her hair and around her body. a new era has begun, everything she knows is gone. everyone she loves is gone. maybe it’s the haziness of first waking up after a half - century, but there’s a determination beneath her silk skin, her ivory bones. serena has become something new, just as the world has – beneath the porcelain, her ribs have grown steel. she will not be so breakable ever again.
in the movies, pearls are always being yanked from necks, the precious little beads clattering to the hardwood floor in bunches. serena allows the pretty necklace to drift through her fingers, remembering the time her mother had wrapped it around her neck. she’d felt like such a little madam in her maman’s pearls. there’s a little secret: those pearls in films, dramatic as they were, were fake. maman’s were genuine, and the little pieces were knotted in between, meaning even if she’d ripped them from her throat, only one or two at worst would go missing. her mother was too much of a lady, anyway … prone to melancholy and hurt, but not quite fits. what a complicated love, the one between a mother & a daughter … serena finds herself missing her mother’s arms more often than not these days, and the security that came with them.
valentine’s day has always been a non - affair romantically; her favorites were dinner dates with her family, the men being the gentlemen, and the one day her maman would let her wear her red lipstick. the couples on the street below her balcony make her feel something, but is it jealousy, or nostalgia ? her palm cradles her jaw as she leans against the iron barrier. a man kisses a woman, and why does her heart lurch for something so impossible ? to love, to be loved … she would never be capable of it, her last boyfriend had told her so. adam had as well. anyone who would want to spend this day with her is dead, and no one else could accept the things she’d done, the person she’s become beneath the lace and ribbons. hallowed, broken.
i hate the dirt. i hate the grime that i can’t wash away, and the fingerprint i leave on the pristine envelope that the postman gives me, his gaze apologetic. until i look at the handwriting, i don’t understand why. it’s been a week since he could last reach us on the battlefield, to give us some form of comfort and relief, and he only gives me a single letter. there should be more. serena writes to me every day, there should be at least six or seven, all beginning with my dearest brother; but even the single letter isn’t from my sister, but my wife. i should be excited for that, but i’m not – not when i can’t fathom why there’s only this one letter. when i tear into it, a picture falls out: my wife, holding our son. this is a happy moment, and i can feel pressure build behind my eyes, but it’s distracted, because serena should be in this photo. she isn’t, because for some godforsaken reason she’s here in europe – and that’s enough to push the tears from my eyes. i should be there, and serena should be holding her nephew and accepting our request to be his godmother.
but she isn’t, and i’m not either.
the streets of new york now aren’t so different from the streets of new york in my childhood. the fashion is different; women wear shorter skirts, deeper cuts to expose their collarbones, and these are changes i like. the buildings still creep into the clouds like pillars of divinity, and the sidewalks are crowded, but no one pays too much attention to anyone else. the men dress differently too, and those changes i don’t like, but if i sit and close my eyes … it’s still all the same, and i can picture the cars, the pretty women and handsome men … even my silly little girl friends, the ones who would walk with me during breaks in ballet when we had so little else to do. when i close my eyes, it doesn’t feel like a lifetime ago.
it happens gradually, then all at once, like the impatience of waiting for a rose to blossom. one day you wake up, and it’s simply bloomed, petals spread wide in the sunshine. in that case, serena wonders which moment it was that made her realize her feelings for ben had flowered ── was it the time his fingers grazed hers on the piano keys, and he played the wrong note to make her laugh ? or perhaps when he smiled at her so earnestly, all white teeth and curled lips that met the crinkles by his eyes ? she can’t pinpoint the exact moment she realized she loves ben kenobi; serena only knows what she feels now, the safety of his warm hugs, the way the word ‘graves’ slips between her teeth and she doesn’t choke trying to reel it back in. home was something impossible, turned to ash & bone, but then she finds herself sitting at their table in the coffee shop & she thinks perhaps a home can be rebuilt.
prayer used to come first thing in the morning, a mantra spoken breathlessly to open air. it’s not an ideology that serena subscribes to anymore ❪ part of her wonders if she ever did ❫ , but old habits had died hard. she wants to enjoy a new one. ben is there, barely awake while thick raindrops smack against the balcony doors, and serena shimmies his boxers down his thighs. she’s already asked him nicely, with her polite manners and pretty mouth ── and she tries to mask her eagerness with languid movements, laying her cheek to his hip and letting her long curls fall over his body. serena knows he can feel her by the way he shudders when her eyelashes flit over him, her rose - petal fingers everywhere and nowhere because they aren’t exactly where ben wants them. you should tell me what you like, serena offers with a wicked little smile, dragging his hand until he can grip her curls, holding sunshine in his palms.
when the legs beat against each other in the midst of a jete, it’s a battu jete … beaten. everything is more beautiful in french, and serena thinks it’s true of herself as well. she had been her company director’s little princess, sliding into his queen; she would’ve been the youngest prima ballerina in history. she would’ve had a life. she would’ve had a brother. orson does so much for her, and serena can hardly find it in herself to be grateful, can hardly repeat the pleasantries and manners she’d been taught to sing since she was a little girl letting words tumble from her mouth. instead, serena tries to create a peaceful world, she jumps at the chance to redesign the building he buys, create a setting of her own making; only to lay under the covers, sleeping next to a pillow she pretends is august.
disgusting. vile. serena watches august rip a newspaper in half, once, twice, then three times, letting the pieces fly onto the floor and cover the coffee table. the headline had once read about her, calling her a top three debutante in new york’s uppercrust society. not just in the top three, but ranked number one. shouldn’t we be proud ? serena asks him. shouldn’t i be flattered ? august had fallen to his knees in front of the chaise where she sat after that, holding her little hands in his own. he squeezes them so tight serena winces. tell me, he begs. tell me if anyone ever touches you. tell me, and i’ll kill them. with all the naivety in the world, serena giggles, shaking her head. nonsense, my darling brother. the only man i love is you; and the only man who shall ever touch me is not here yet.
the sunlight doesn’t seem so bright, but the city is just as bustling as the last time she’d seen it. what year had that been ? somewhere around nineteen forty, serena thinks. her old ballet studio has moved; it’s previous location now just another parking lot in new york city. everything about it gives her whiplash. it’s all the same and all entirely different. she almost expects to see august across the street, handsome smile & hair swept back, but she knows she won’t. he’s dead, and so is everyone else she ever knew. there’s a pressure on her shoulders, wondering when someone will notice the imaginary blood seeping out of her core, or when someone will realize she’s half - dead. little walking dead girl, schrodinger’s girl, dead and alive.
photographs from another era are spread all across the wooden table serena sits at, glimmering and shining in their black and white glory, sepia, and even a few colored ones. they all had a touch of grain to them, the consequence of new, unperfected technology, but serena adores them. after all, in every photo she sees the face of someone she loves. her grandfather royce, cradling the toddler version of herself in his arms, and then them at a later age, serena with her arms wrapped tightly around him. in another photo, serena sits in his lap, while her grandmother, the woman for whom she was named, hugs them both from behind. so many lost smiles, shining with no idea of what’s to come. her finger traces along another photo, of her mother posing with her in her first pair of pointe shoes. she’d been so proud that day, and serena can’t help but smile back at her. these little moments are all she has left now; what if she forgets it all someday ? at least she won’t forget their faces. serena glues the back of the photos, pasting them into a scrapbook. there are new people she doesn’t want to forget someday as well, and for them, serena glances at a newer camera. she doesn’t have to forget.
moy lebed. my swan. mr. nikolaev calls her that, from the first moment he saw her complete the thirty - two fouettés in odile’s coda. serena sighs into the open studio. the sky has long gone dark, and every other dancer and crew member has gone home — but she remains. this is the dedication that will make me the prima, serena reminds herself. this is what sets me apart. she counts the steps in her head until she loses herself to the imagined music, eyes closed while she moves her arms and tip - toes across the floor. serena is the very picture of a music box ballerina when she kicks her foot up, finding her north star and turning in pirouettes. not even the quiet opening of a door interrupts her focus. august takes her little waist in his hands and helps to give her the extra momentum. then he hoists her over his shoulder, telling her how mother is so worried, and she has to come home right away… all spoken with his hidden, wry smile.
i had never tried to impress anyone the way i’d tried to impress mr. nikolaev, my ballet master and choreographer. my every waking moment was spent under his scrutinizing gaze, attempting to dissect his utter dissatisfaction with the world for it’s lack of grace and beauty and what he felt towards me specifically … all in a leotard and tights that would only leave the color of my skin to our imaginations, and mirrors on every wall reminding me of that fact. i don’t know if i tried harder to gain his attention in the first place, or if i would have killed myself trying to keep it. no girl is ever more beautiful than they are at sixteen, and though i didn’t realize it, perhaps if i had lived to see him again in my later years he would’ve been impressed with my freckles, my dimples, and my big eyes at the age of twenty – i’ve heard i don’t look so different. still, i was even more girlish then than i am now, and three times as shy ; ballet was all i could use to get him to look at me, to make him pay attention & perhaps remember why he took this job in the first place after his own short, but famed career. i would be perfect ; not just for him, but for myself. it didn’t hurt anything that i was his little prima prodigy. he smiled for the first time when he called me his moy lebed, his swan, and i can’t remember the last thing, even now, that had made my heart soar so much.
‘are you ready?’ on the cusp of spring in the midst of march, lies serena’s birthday. thirteen is such a special age for a girl ; not quite a woman yet, not quite a girl anymore, but leaving the throes of childhood behind. august’s question comes with an excited edge to his voice and a slim box in his hands, with pink wrapping paper and white ribbons. the other guests at the party had long dissipated, and serena sits on the edge of her bed, feet swinging back and forth to dissipate a bit of the thrill she feels. ‘i’ve been waiting all day!’ is what serena replies, taking the gift into her lap. her brother sits down next to her ; he’s twenty, seven years older, and a man grown, but it’s as if there’s no difference between them as august wraps his arm around her waist, matching brown eyes gleaming as he watches her carefully pry apart the paper to reveal a box of velvet. ‘it’s sentimental,’ august had said, as to why he couldn’t let her open it amongst the guests. private, serena thinks. her brother was always a private man. when she lifts the lid, and august uses his other hand to fold away the white paper, it reveals a precious, heart - shaped golden locket. he pulls it out by the chain, letting the pendent rest in serena’s palms. ‘it’s the most beautiful thing i’ve ever seen,’ serena says, eyes glimmering. august’s fingers snap the clasp, and inside, a photo of himself on one side, and then a photo of their parents from their wedding day on the other. serena beams as august closes it then places the necklace around her neck, the pendent falling just at her collarbones. ‘it’s beautiful, my wonderful brother,’ she says, and august kisses her crown. ‘it’s almost as lovely as you, my sweet little sister, and you deserve lovely things. this way, we’ll always be with you.’
julian’s wedding band was like him ; it was a simple golden band, with ivy growing around it, interrupted only by a diagonal line of diamonds. when serena tilts it back, she can see her mother’s name engraved in it. eirene’s was a little flashier, with a bigger diamond in the center. it wasn’t because of her personality, though … in that, serena can still see her father, wanting to impress her, wanting to give his wife the world. julian’s ring occupies her left thumb ; she couldn’t bear to get it resized for her dainty hands, so it’s the best she could manage. he’d had a lithe frame, and for that she’s thankful – serena remembers sliding the ring off of his finger when she’d crossed his arms over his chest, holding it between her fingers. she had to have it. her mother had worn hers until the very last, until she had slipped from serena’s hand into the ocean’s embrace. serena had only been able to just clasp the ring, before it too could fall from her grasp. now, it rests on her index finger, where at least on her hands, her parents could still be together.
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Have you written any fics about the aftermath of sock opera? Like some nice hurt comfort dipper centric family bonding type shit? I love your writing style and i love this troupe
I haven’t...UNTIL NOW
(Also, thank you so much!)
“Grunkle Stan, where’s the first aid kit?”
At first, he didn’t think much of it. Mabel’s voice was as chipper and cheerful as ever, but knowing her, she was probably planning on making some sort of unholy bandaid collage.
“Top of the fridge.”
She bounced away, and he heard her clattering around the kitchen for a bit before her footsteps retreated up to the attic. Stan just shrugged and settled back into his armchair.
A few minutes later, Mabel returned. “Hey, Grunkle Stan? Quick hypothetical question. If someone’s hand was really really hurting—hypothetically—and you hypothetically wanted to know if any bones were hypothetically broken, how could you tell? Hypothetically?”
That got Stan’s attention. He jumped to his feet and stomped up the stairs, Mabel trailing sheepishly behind. He didn’t bother knocking when he reached the attic—just burst through the door like he owned the place. (Which he did, despite what any signature or deed might say.)
“Whatever you two knuckleheads have been gettin’ up to, you’d better...” Stan trailed off when he saw Dipper.
The kid was still dressed in that ridiculous reverend get-up, although the overcoat had been removed. His arms were covered with an assortment of bandaids. And he was completely conked out, sprawled senselessly across his bed and snoring up a storm.
“Sheesh,” Stan said. “What happened ta him?”
“The, uh, performance tonight just took a toll on him,” Mabel said, rubbing her arm nervously. “Good ol’ Dip-Dop, master of theatre! Really gave it his all, haha!”
Stan sat on the edge of the bed and poked Dipper, who didn’t even stir. Out like a light. Probably for the best—the kid was carrying some major bags under his eyes. Stan recalled their conversation at breakfast, with Mabel mentioning something about Dipper not getting enough sleep. No surprise there; he was probably obsessing over some new spookum or mystery. Heh. Kinda reminded Stan of...
“‘Gave it his all,’ alright,” Stan said as he took Dipper’s hand, examining it and prodding it gently. “Both of you did. Exploded half the theatre, and I’m the one payin’ for damages. You two had better bust your butts in the gift shop.” He set Dipper’s hand down and checked the other one over. “No broken bones. His fingers are real swollen, though—looks like a couple were dislocated and reset.”
Mabel frowned. “How can you tell?”
“‘Cause I can. Go grab an ice pack, will ya?”
Mabel rushed off, and judging by the thumps and bangs that followed soon after, she tripped down the stairs.
Eh, she’d be fine. Kids were practically made of rubber.
While she was gone, Stan inspected her handiwork. All of the bandaids covering Dipper’s arms were either neon, sparkly, cat-shaped, or a combination of the three. Typical Mabel. Something caught his eye, and he leaned forward, brow furrowed—it seemed that she had missed a spot near Dipper’s elbow.
And the mark looked less like the byproduct of falling from a cake prop, and more like some sort of stab wound from a...fork?
“Oops!” Mabel said, popping up beside Stan so suddenly that he nearly had a heart attack. “Looks like I missed one. Bwap!” She stuck a glittery bandage over the mark. Stan flinched, expecting Dipper to wake up, but he just continued snoring.
“Don’t worry,” Mabel said as she swabbed disinfectant over the scrapes on her brother’s face. “I put stickers on him while he’s sleeping all the time, he never wakes up. And that’s when he’s not super-duper sleep-deprived.” She covered the scrapes with two more bandaids. “Womp, womp! Good as new!”
Stan sighed and dragged a hand over his face. “Listen,” he said. “I don’t know what’s goin’ on with you two, but ya gotta be more careful. I don’t know what I’d do if—”
“SUBJECT CHANGE!” Mabel blurted out. “What would you hide under your shell if you were a turtle? I think I’d use the extra space to store more cupcakes!” She pulled six cupcakes from somewhere inside her sweater and sighed, stuffing all of them in her mouth at once. “I wee ah weas ah hohen oo wea oulhama uhcay oteshel.” [Translation: “I need at least a dozen to reach ultimate cupcake potential.”]
Stan just stared. This wasn’t like Mabel at all. Well, the cupcakes were...but normally, she’d be all over him sharing his mushy-gushy feelings. Now, she was cutting him off mid-heartfelt speech? Something was definitely up.
“Listen, kiddo.” He hesitantly put a hand on her shoulder, and she looked up at him with a wide-eyed, frosting-and-sprinkle-covered expression. “Ya know you can talk ta me, right?”
For a split second, so fast he might’ve imagined it, something very vulnerable flashed across Mabel’s eyes.
But in the next moment, she was grinning and batting her eyelashes innocently. “Of course I do, Grunkle Stan! Which is why I need you to give me your most detailed review of the play! I’ve already got the sequel planned out, but I could always use a few pointers—”
Before Stan could protest, Mabel was dragging him out of the attic and down the stairs. As the bedroom door shut, he managed to catch one last glimpse of Dipper, still snoring soundly.
Well, whatever was going on, Stan was sure he could figure it out later. For now, Dipper needed all the sleep he could get.
“Alright, alright. If I’m bein’ completely honest, the fight scene at the end really came outta left field. Still the best part of the show, though! Heck, if I didn’t know any better, I’d think you two were really tryin’ ta kill each other...”
Dipper shot up in bed, heart pounding in his chest. Mabel glanced up from the book she was reading and hopped down from her own bed.
“Don’t worry, Dipper, you’re safe. Everything’s alright,” she said, climbing up next to him. “No evil triangles trying to steal your body.”
Dipper shuddered and ran a hand through his hair...then brought his arm back down in front of his face with a confused look.
“Did...did you put all these bandaids on me?”
Mabel beamed proudly. “Yep! Well, Stan helped with that one—“ she pointed to a spot on his elbow that he couldn’t see, “—but other than that, it was alllllllll me!”
Dipper glanced down at himself and raised an eyebrow. “Mabel, how did I get in my pajamas?” he asked, not sure if he really wanted to know the answer.
She wiggled her fingers melodramatically. “I have my ways.”
“Feels like I got hit by a bus,” Dipper mumbled with a yawn, eyes already beginning to slip back closed. “Stupid Bill...”
“Stupid Bill,” Mabel agreed, patting him on the shoulder and pulling the covers up over him as he laid back down. “You go on back to sleep, Bro-bro. You got nothing to worry about. If he comes back, I’ll just tickle him away again.”
Dipper smiled softly. “Thanks, Mabel...”
Within moments, he was passed out once more.
As soon as she was sure he was asleep, the smile slipped from Mabel’s face and was replaced with a much more somber expression. She slowly crawled back into her own bed and opened Journal Number 3.
A horrifying illustration—and an even more horrifying note—stared back at her.
Mabel closed her eyes and let out a deep breath.
It was fine. Everything was fine.
But it almost wasn’t.
Her eyes snapped open and she glared down at the drawing of Bipper. She stuck her tongue out at it and slammed the book shut, then flopped back onto the bed.
“Don’t worry, Dipper,” she repeated quietly to the ceiling. “I’m gonna make sure nothing like this ever happens again. I’ll be a better sister, you’ll see.” She thought about gnomes and Gideon-bots, megaphones and time-tapes, pterodactyls and Summerweens and sock puppets. Her mouth pressed into a firm, determined line, and she rolled over and set the journal on the nightstand.
She clicked off the lamp, and fell into a restless sleep.
(And then she has a disturbingly realistic dream about sock puppets, plus some very lifelike puppets of Stan and McGucket)
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“all in all, i have to say, this kind of tracks as far as birthdays go.”
this, of course, was stated while they were curled up in sanshouo. whistle of the storm around them still making it through the iron curtain. nothing to do but lay with one arm behind his head, somewhat comfortable. or as comfortable as someone could be, wondering how many hours had ticked by already. and they were so close to making it back to suna’s gates, too. typical.
“and all that dinner planning was wasted…” yuugiri’s sigh was somewhat believable. followed by rustling, which once again did nothing to convince kankuro against believing she could see in the dark. not until he leans just a touch more forward to realise she formed one-handed seals.
bathing them in a very gentle low light. needlessly risky. but he did appreciate it, once he managed to blink stars out from behind his eyelids and meet her disappointed frown.
ah, he couldn’t help himself. pulls at her cheek between thumb and forefinger. “you know i didn’t plan this.”
“i know what you plan for, kankuro. i don’t trust you.” words stretched around the way he continued to hold her cheek out. and yet, he finds himself grinning.
“oh, well, since you suggested that—”
hand over his mouth. “we’re not having sex in your puppet.”
“y’know, you’re really boring sometimes. which is really fucking surprising.” such a comment earns him quite the look, with which he laughs in response. elbow digging into her side. “come on, i’m kidding.” about what, he doesn’t say exactly. if only because it gets him the reaction he wanted.
yuugiri grumbles fantastically, before the light goes out, and she’s turned into his side. head on his shoulder, kankuro almost has half a mind to consider that she had gone to sleep. maybe he should too. closes his eyes, moving his arm around to bring her in closer, until,
“hey, i heard holding each other naked brings up body temperatures.” nope, kankuro still couldn’t resist ribbing at her.
if he opened his eyes now, he knew she would be glaring at him again. “kankuro, it’s already hot in here.”
“then wiggle your fingers and make it snow or something. i know you can do it.”
“but it’s my birthday.” for effect, he drags the word out. fingers in her sides, immediately making her twist away from him; wheeze of laughter poorly disguised as a cough. “yuu…”
laughed around the way there was no room in here. “no, it was your birthday yesterday.” her hands in his face now, holding him back. “the moon was high when—”
kankuro sticks his tongue out, against her fingers. interrupts yuugiri, as there was a noise that left her. not appreciative, knees that move a little too close for comfort. her hands wiping against the front of his shirt, a long string of ew leaving her. ironic. in many ways that he wasn’t quite committed to pointing out. not just yet, anyway.
not enough room inside sanshouo for yuugiri to get too far away, and she’s acting like she’d been dragged back over unwillingly. in his arms, something or other that he was only half paying attention to being mumbled out. until her head tilts back and she’s almost comfortable again.
for his effort, last one, he says, “i’m kidding.”
“no, you’re not.”
“okay, no, i’m not.”
that gets him a smile. he could feel it against the curve of his jaw. kiss, right there. nothing to read into. nothing to question. whistle dying down overhead. maybe another hour or two, at least. deep inhale. one more shift from yuugiri, until she’s sprawled over him, head tucked under his chin. anyone else, convincingly dead to the world.
hand, small of her back, drawing circles there. staring up at the inside of sanshouo, half a thought going. recognising. typical, for a birthday (or, not-birthday, as pointed out), and yet. not the worst he’d had. huh. weird to consider. something kankuro was definitely not going to think about for the next couple of hours. nope, not at all. not even as he lifted his hands, letting yuugiri rearrange herself once more, before settling them back on her. idle thought, of really being in it now.
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WARNINGS : NONE
Tags: Fluff, Angst, Icons, Imagines, Headcanons, One-shot
Sarah ran her soft fingertips over his metallic arm, simply contemplating all the majestical things he could do with it in the bedroom. Blushing at her own thoughts she quickly shook it off and pulled away. “Are you ready to help?”
It was the largest gathering that the small town in New Orleans had ever seen! Sam had invited his distant cousins from most of the neighboring cities. The Wilson family cook out was a popular event and was even crowned the most famous tourist spot of the summer! Only contested by the Louisiana folks during the majorly eventful Bayou festival in mid May.
The small dock erupted in cheers and laughter as Hey Ya! by OutKast blasted loudly, consuming the crowd and forcing everyone to the center of the dock.
“What you young-ins know about this jam!” Sam slid from the back of the boat, four cases of Corona beers in both hands, with a contented grin plastered onto his face. Aj and Cass not too far behind.
“Where’s your mother anyway? Y’all been stuck with me all day.” Sam arched a confused brow at the two boys who shrugged their tiny shoulders in unison. “Last - I saw her with Uncle Bucky, packing the food.” Aj said before grabbing his brother’s hand and leading him to the center of the dance circle.
“Uncle Bucky?” Both of Sam’s brows shot up his forehead. “When did he get here?” He whispered to himself, when he placed the cases by the cooler on the table - and began his quest for his sister and his best friend.
“This is my famous king crab Bucky.” Sarah shot a pearly white smile as she lathered the crab in spicy garlic butter sauce. She then gently stacked them onto one another in an oversized foil plate.
It was the time of the year where all of the eligible bachelorettes would slither their way to the dock in search of their “future husbands.” Sarah had already taken her loses and retired from the game - ever since the death of her husband. However, today seemed special, it was the first time in years that her stomach knotted in curls from butterflies so much so, that she thought she’d puke. Her youth sprung about anytime Bucky was around, similarly to a school girl with her very first crush. He just brought out the best in her, so she decided why not look the part.
Sam had mentioned to her that her skin glistened whenever she wore the color yellow. Despite how out of character it was for him to be so blunt about literally - anything, Sarah decided to take his advice and throw on her favorite off shoulder cut, form fitting sun dress. Her long senegalese twists were tied into a high bun and wrapped in a yellow ribbon that flowed behind her in pure elegance.
Turning the corner of her bedroom - on her way to the kitchen, she was greeted by a well dressed Bucky in a tight blue knit sweater that hugged his body in all the right places! And dark black jeans that displayed his full basketball trunk. He stood over a boiling pot of king crabs on the stove. Clearing her throat quite loudly, she caught his attention almost immediately. As he turned to face her his eyes widened in astonishment, almost as if he had sinfully taken a peak at the worlds most beautiful piece of treasure.
“Wow,” was all Bucky could muster when gravity became the main puppeteer, forcefully drawing them towards one another. He smiled sheepishly and continued “you look lovely Sarah.” Returning his grin she replied “and you don’t look so bad yourself, Uncle Bucky.”
Pulling him into a tight embrace Bucky’s chin rested in the corner of Sarah’s neck. He took in the scent of her sweet Vanilla Bean cologne. If he could have his way, he would have swallowed her whole that very instant. He wished for nothing more than to have her succumbed to his own desires, clawing his name on his back as she screams in pure ecstasy. Bucky swayed rhythmically with her movements, it took all of his energy not to instinctively plant a soft kiss between her neck and trail.
Sarah ran her soft fingertips over his metallic arm, simply contemplating all the majestical things he could do with it in the bedroom. Blushing at her own thoughts she quickly shook it off and pulled away. “Are you ready to help?”
“When I’m done with this batch, can you wrap it in aluminum foil and carry it to the front table for our guests?” Sarah faced the stove top, her back turned to a confused Bucky, who watched her work in utter amazement.
Bucky was familiar with crab as a cuisine, and had tasted a fair share of it during his time in Wakanda. However, he had never seen it prepared before him.
“So does it like ... cry or anything when you place it in the boiling water ... alive?” He asked innocently, when Sarah sighed in disbelief and sat the lathering brush onto the table. Her heart fluttered at his innocence, but her mind pondered in continuous confusion. She wondered just how much Bucky had missed out on in the last 70 years or just seemingly had minimal to no experience on. Turning to face him a smile crept its way up her plump lips as she answered nonchalantly “I don’t have an answer for you Bucky.”
His blue eyes glistened in curiosity as they scanned over Sarah’s features, she was unlike any woman that he had ever seen. From her bright dark brown eyes to the cute little indentation by her nose, Bucky found himself lost in their tight gaze. Until he eventually landed on Sarah’s plush pink lips. Sarah noticed Bucky’s observance and smiled shyly. Her cheeks flushed when she subconsciously ran her tongue over her lips. Of course she wanted to grapple Bucky right then and there, she had wanted to do so since she first laid eyes on the man. But one of her biggest fears was getting involved with a hero. She already had her plate full with Sam, was she really ready to add another burden to the list?
“There you guys are!” Sam grinned and pulled Sarah into a tight embrace “I was beginning to worry.”
“Aw Sam, you missed me, how sweet.” Bucky winked as Sam glared his way. Placing the trays of king crabs with roasted corn and potatoes, buttermilk biscuits and cajun shrimp onto the table, Sarah called for the event goers to each grab a plate and head for the grub.
Sam handed both Bucky and Sarah a pair of gloves before taking a seat at the edge of the table. He pinched Aj and Cass’s noses when they playfully snatched his plate from before him. “Y’all better stop playing before I tell your mama to send you to bed early.” He smiled when they took a seat next to him.
He watched bewildered by his sisters boldness when she took a seat by Bucky. Running her finger tips over his armored arm, he noticed that she began to play her fingers through her twists. Her grin from ear to ear as she engaged in conversation with Bucky, the same thing she used to do when she had a crush on a boy in high school.
“So where’s the crab opener?” Bucky asked, facing Sam who’s face scrunched in utter disgust. Sarah bursted into a fit of laughter when Aj and Cass joined as well.
“We don’t use that utensil around these parts, buddy.” Bucky’s brow arched in confusion when Sam picked up a crab leg and ripped it in half with one tug. “You see here?” He placed the piece into his mouth and used his teeth to crack the shell methodically, in an instant the entire meat was stripped from the leg. “Now that’s how you eat a crab leg! Let me see you do it.”
All eyes were now glued onto Bucky as he studied the crab leg. His blue eyes narrowed when he used his metal arm to pick up the leg and snapped it in half effortlessly. Sarah’s eyes widened as she watched Bucky smile contently to himself. He placed the crab to his lips, intricately running his tongue over every square inch of it. He shot Sarah a mischievous smirk, before pulling it out with a loud plop! “Tasty.”
Sarah flushed immediately, inching her way out of her seat. While Sam glared intently, picking up a piece of shrimp and sulking in his defeat.
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26 with Obi-Wan and Ahsoka please <3
Sure thing, buddy! <3
sequel to this
“What happened to you? What did they say to you?” “Please don’t make me tell you.”
Grievous was just as terrifying as Ahsoka had feared. The creature seemed to tower over her, clawed feet clinking as it stalked towards them. Her master instinctively slid in front of her, lightsaber lit, a wall of protective might. But she could tell he was scared too.
Grievous wasn’t supposed to be anywhere near them. The cyborg’s last sighted location was several planets away from them. It wasn’t supposed to be anywhere near here.
Apparently the Force had other plans.
Grievous must have arrived first, waiting for them to show up. And it was clear he hadn’t just been standing around the whole time. Not when an ominous splash of crimson stood out on that pale face plate.
For a second all three simply stood there, staring at each other.
“Ahsoka,” Anakin breathed. “Go back to the ship.”
“What?” The togruta exclaimed. “I’m not leaving you!”
Grievous let out an inhuman screech, causing both Jedi to flinch. And then it lunged.
“Get to the ship!” Anakin screamed, just barely bringing up his lightsaber to block the assault.
And then both combatants dissolved into a blur of motion. Her eyes could barely keep up watching then block and dodge and weave around each other’s strikes. There was an odd familiarity in the way they countered and parried each other’s strikes. Able to read their opponent in an instant. Almost as if they had been sparring each other for years.
But surely that was ridiculous... wasn’t it?
Her master seemed to be winning, driving Grievous back more often than he was. He even planted a strong front kick to the creature’s abdomen. A move that would have made Master Kenobi proud.
And then in an instant it all went wrong.
Anakin’s defence faltered ever so slightly and Grievous was all too happy to take advantage of that. Before Ahsoka could even blink an emerald blade impaled itself through his stomach.
“No!” Ahsoka screamed.
Metallic fingers grabbed her master’s hair, an armored face leaning forward to whisper something in his ear. Instantly Anakin’s eyes widened and his tan face went deathly pale.
Those fingers released their grip. Anakin fell like a puppet cut from its strings, falling to his knees and then onto his front.
Grievous loomed over the downed figure, raising a stolen saber for the deathblow.
“Get away from him!” Ahsoka screamed, racing forward. She swung her lightsabers almost haphazardly, not caring about anything but getting that thing away from her master.
Ahsoka wasn’t sure if it was the assault itself or the wild desperation, but she somehow managed to draw that creature back. She stood over her master’s downed form and dared that creature to come any closer. It didn’t.
Ahsoka risked glancing away to check on Anakin. When she looked back Grievous was gone. Or maybe he had retreated to a better vantage point, waiting to ambush them again. Or call in unneeded reinforcements.
The teen wasn’t about to stick around and find out. She hooked her arms under her master’s shoulders, dragging him back to where the Twilight waited. It wasn’t far away, but it might as well have been a mile.
Thankfully the wound was much less severe than Ahsoka had first feared. Nothing the medial droid couldn’t handle.
With practiced hands she guided the ship out of the atmosphere. Somewhere Grievous -hopefully- wouldn’t follow. It was only when she ran a quick scan of the ship, thankfully finding no bugs or tracking devices, did Ahsoka send them into hyperspace.
With nothing else to do, she found her way back to the medbay.
Her master sat on the edge of the bed, glancing up as she entered. A bandage had been wrapped around his middle where Grievous had landed the brutal strike.
“How’re you feelin’, Master?” She asked.
“Not great, I’ll be honest. Who knew becoming a shish kebab wouldn’t be fun?” he replied, a ghost of a grin tracing across his lips. It faded as soon as it had come.
“Now you don’t go running off before that wound has time to heal,” she half-scolded.
He nodded with a soft huff of amusement. Normally he would roll his eyes and go “ok, mom.” And then she’d punch him in the shoulder. And then they’d laugh together, letting the stress of the mission fade away.
Not this time. As much as she didn’t want to, Ahsoka had to ask. “What happened to you? What did Grievous say to you?”
Anakin paled a little. He shook his head, refusing to meet her gaze. “Please don’t make me tell you.” He let out a broken keen, his face crumpling in on itself. “I- I can’t say it.”
Ahsoka swallowed dryly. “You stay here, master. I’ll call the Council and take us home.”
He simply nodded, not saying anything else.
Silently Ahsoka slipped from the room to do what she said. She didn’t like the broken look in her master’s eyes.
It was when Ahsoka popped back in to check on him did Anakin finally speak. “Obi-wan,” he said, staring blankly at the wall.
Ahsoka blinked, turning back around to face him. “Pardon?”
What could a long-dead master have to do with this new mechanical monstrosity?
“That… thing,” he took a breath, clearly struggling. “Grievous, he didn’t- he- he didn’t come from nothing.”
“Master?” Ahsoka found she didn’t like the way this conversation was going. Anakin looked her dead in the eyes even as his own glistened. “Grievous is Obi-wan.”
whump dialogue prompts
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Ch. 23: Mid May
Warnings: No Warnings Apply
Fandoms: Harry Potter - J.K Rowling, Rise of the Brave Tangled Dragons/The Big Four, Brave, How to Train Your Dragon, Rise of the Guardians
Characters: Merida DunBroch (Brave), Hiccup Horrendous Haddock III (How to Train Your Dragon), Jack Frost (Guardians of Childhood), Original Female Character(s), Original Non-Human Character(s)
Tags: Hogwarts AU, kid!fic, Boarding School, Fantasy, Fluff, Fluff and Humor, Banter, Kids Being Kids, Teenagers Being Dorks, Exam Stress, Studying, Why Study When You Can ✨Procrastinate✨, Merida Is Struggling, Merida Is Trying Her Best, Adorkable Jack, Jack Is A Little Shite, Jack Is Smart But Lazy, Hiccup Trying To Ignore Both But Getting Into Shenanigans Anyways, Rapunzel (mentioned), More Of My Favorite Ravenclaw Headcanons Lmao, This Writer Has Regrets, No Beta No Similes We Die
Word count: 2,524 words
1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24
AO3 copy-paste link bc tunglr.hecksite is a butt:
Where Merida spends the time she should've been studying for her finals getting into gambling and losing all her earnings.
How have I gone three whole chapters without editing a single thing ;A; Somebody hold my perfectionist heart for me, I'm sobbing.
It was about mid-May when Merida decided that finals were invented by someone who wanted to torment her specifically. This, she reasoned, was a perfectly normal and logical conclusion to draw, given the circumstances.
Either that or all the exam stress was finally catching up to her and she’d found another bucket of misery to pour into whatever pool of emotions she mentally laid at the bottom of.
It’s not that she’d gone back to not paying attention in her classes again. She’d paid enough attention that year to write down notes and learn a thing or two. But her shorthand was awful and her writing looked like chicken scratch, and half the time she’d forgotten which notes to bring to which classes so they ended up being mismatched, misplaced, and not all that useful for learning anything from. The homeworks she’d scrambled to put together were with her professors, so she couldn’t study from them either.
For finals, knowing “a thing or two” just wasn’t going to cut it. There was no other choice. Merida had to study.
Her one saving grace was the fact that Clary let her borrow old textbooks again, that way Merida could find and read only the important parts. Her roommates were helpful and explained things if she asked, but half the time Merida either napped, messed around, or stared blankly at the lake window instead of at her textbooks, while the other half she’d spend feeling sulky and jealous about how well her roommates and the rest of her House seemed to be managing while she’d be lucky if she absorbed a chapter in a day. After a week of this, Merida exiled herself to the library to be miserable with the rest of the unfortunates who wouldn’t or couldn’t study in their dorms either.
Surprisingly, she met two familiar faces there.
It was always after lunch. Merida would sit at any one of the big tables, and sooner or later she’d hear the sound of Hiccup complaining as Jack led them both to sit with her.
“Every day you bring me here and every day I have to deal with it.” Hiccup sat heavily, heaving his bulging satchel onto the table with a loud thud. “Don’t you know how heavy all of this is?”
Jack flopped down into the seat next to him, one arm slinging around Hiccup’s shoulder. “Still holding onto the theory that if I didn’t come find you before lunch, you’d probably stay holed up in your room without food or sunlight or human contact until the finals ended, and I think that’s sad. And I already told you I’d be happy to carry your books for you if you asked.”
Hiccup stared at him, unimpressed. “Last time I left you alone with my things, you somehow found a way to make yourself and all my things float to the ceiling.”
“Well, it’s not my fault you keep weird stones in your bag, so maybe don’t do that.”
Hiccup didn’t bother with a reply, instead putting on a pair of earmuffs and opening a book. Jack turned to Merida.
“So, what’ve you got today?” Merida held up her Transfiguration textbook. “I see. Want me to help you study?”
He did not help her study. They instead end up getting side-tracked with trading jibes, sharing childhood stories, and playing a seemingly unending number of tabletop games that Jack kept pulling out of his pockets, because apparently he was just as bad as Merida when it came to study sessions. But that was something she could live with. Even if she barely got anything done for finals, at least she didn’t have to sit and feel sorry for herself.
After the fifth time she lost at cards in the same hour, she decided to take back that thought.
“I cannot believe you! You’re bleeding me dry!” Merida threw down her cards, glowering at Jack as he surveyed her share of the candy she’d bet and lost.
Jack stuck a caramel in his mouth and shrugged. “It’s your own fault you’re bad at cards.”
Merida huffed, blowing the hair out of her face. “I am not. You just keep getting all the good ones.”
“Guess I owe you a thank you for shuffling the deck and giving them to me. Thank you so much, Merida. You are the most generous person I know,” he said, smiling a smile that deserved to be smacked.
But Merida would not do it, because she knew what he was doing. He was trying to rile her up and she refused to fall for it. She was better than that. Really.
For lack of anything better to do, Merida crossed her arms. “Why are you here, anyways? To be a pest?” She grumbled.
“Aw, don’t you like my charming personality?” he asked, chin propped on his hands and batting his eyes.
“Of course not. The only reason I haven’t chased you off yet is because I’m trying to leech all the candy out of you, obviously. If you wanted your personality appreciated, you should’ve gone and shared it with your House.” Merida paused, her head tilting. “Why are you here, anyways? Why aren’t you studying with your Housemates and keeping them company?”
“Because I’ve been keeping them company, and letting them borrow my things, and doing whatever else to help them with school all year. I think it’s about time they learned to help themselves for once. I’m sure they can handle studying for finals. I believe in them.”
“No you don’t.”
“No I don’t. Okay, fine, the real reason is because they’ll take all my notes and I will not see them again until next year, and Hiccup has his own notes, and you’re so far behind on your studying that you can’t get any use out of mine.”
If it weren’t for the fact that everything Jack said was completely, utterly true, Merida would’ve seriously considered thwacking her textbook over his head. Or stealing back her candy, it’d serve him right.
But instead all she could do was sulk. “As if you’re even using your notes,” she mumbled at her textbook.
She managed to read half way down the page when a shiny wrapper rolled into her sights and bumped against her nose. She blew it away, only for Jack’s finger to nudge it back to her.
She looked up. “Why?”
“Because you look sad, that’s why.”
“I don’t want your pity candy,” she said, but Jack would not be deterred. He poked the toffee against her lips until she opened her mouth and tried to bite his finger.
“You know what would be nice right now?” Jack said, casually dodging her second attempt at biting. “Seeing this friend of mine named Rapunzel. She wouldn’t try to bite me.”
Merida paused, blinking at him. “Wait… did you say Rapunzel?”
“I did. Do you know her? I haven’t seen her in a while.”
“If she’s in Ravenclaw, then yes, I do know her.” Merida sat up. “If I remember correctly, I think she’s in her dorm right now.”
“I’ll go get her, then.” Jack made to stand up. But then Merida caught his sleeve.
She shook her head. “You don’t want to do that.”
Jack raised an eyebrow. “Why not?”
Because Merida knew that Rapunzel had recently subscribed to the special brand Ravenclaw philosophy of “creative learning”, which meant learning what she wanted to learn through any medium she found suitable. And that really did mean any medium. Last Merida had seen, Rapunzel had been using a combination of finger puppets, yarn art, and color- coded pencil shavings to interpret her subjects. Merida had yet to figure out how that worked.
Instead of getting into all that, Merida sighed, “Listen, I am very sure that if you ask Rapunzel to come with you, she will be happy to. But if you sit her at a desk and put a textbook in front of her right now, she will cry. Don’t do that to her. Just trust me on this.”
“…That… okay, yeah, that makes sense. I can see that.” Jack grimaced. “Yeesh, didn’t know it’s that bad already. Maybe I’ll visit her later.”
“You do that. I’m not coming.” Merida shivered. “Tell Rapunzel I said hello.”
“Why aren’t you?”
“Oh, Rapunzel? I know her.”
Both of them looked at Hiccup. Hiccup, who’d taken his earmuffs off and was in the middle of a long, back-cracking stretch, arms pushed out over the table and eyes screwed shut. Merida had asked him about the earmuffs once; he’d showed her how he’d sewn a silencing spell into it, and although that’d been interesting enough to listen to her eyes had glazed over when he’d gone into more detail about the mechanics behind it. Hiccup blinked up at them and, seeing their faces, shrugged. “Met her in the library once or twice. She talks a lot, but she likes Nessi, and she’s nice, so.”
The reptile in question had been preoccupied with a ball of light Hiccup had created for her. On hearing her name, she poked her head up. Hiccup reached over and stroked her spine, earning a happy chirrup from her.
“Excuse you. Rapunzel’s more than nice, she’s one of my best friends.” Jack said, then pointed at Merida. “Also, you didn’t answer my question. Why don’t you want to go?”
Merida looked at him in disbelief. “Do you really have to ask that? This is Ravenclaw House.”
“Haven’t you ever been there? Or heard about it?”
“No, but something tells me I should’ve gone there sooner.” Jack pressed his hands on the table, leaning forward. There was a kind of curiosity in his eyes that could only mean trouble. “What’s going on in the smart house?”
“Too much.” Merida could already see it in her mind, and felt the phantom headache that had followed. “They get up to so much in there. And I don’t think any of it was studying. You know Rapunzel, right? You know how she gets about one of her projects? The ideas she comes up with? Take that energy, and make that into a hundred teenagers. I felt like I’d taken a turn into a loony bin’s nightmare.”
She could vividly recall the multicolored walls, how she’d stumbled out with her eardrums ringing and her hair filled with smoke. “I didn’t know if people were trying to invent things or tear the room apart. There were, like, these flying metal monkeys in there. And hummingbirds, and beetles. There were these seniors transfiguring couches, other people trying to play glowing instruments. I think I saw someone bringing their dolls to life. There were explosions. People where singing. It was an absolute madhouse.”
To think she’d ever thought her brothers were bad. Even Merida wasn’t that bad- at least whatever trouble she got up to was just her being impulsive and reckless and making bad choices, not her actively trying to turn the world inside out. For the sake of everyone she knew, she hoped her brothers never, ever found their way into such a place.
But she’d probably already caused at least a dozen future catastrophes, if the level of excitement on Jack’s face was anything to go by. “Now I have to go there.”
Jack made to do just that. But then Hiccup suddenly lunged. Wrapping his skinny arms around Jack’s neck, he dragged them both down to the table. Hiccup leaned in very close, until they were almost nose to nose, and solemnly stated. “If you will make me suffer, then I will make you suffer.”
Jack blinked at him. Then his face split into a beaming smile. “Aww, Hiccup! You think I’m leaving you? I’ll never do that! I’ll come back! Come here, you big softy, let me just-” And the restraining hold immediately turned into a scuffle, with Hiccup smushing half of Jack’s face trying to keep it away and Jack for some reason trying to lick Hiccup’s hand.
Carefully edging around them, Merida took the discarded earmuffs and put them over her own ears. She knew for a fact that someone had cast a muffling spell in their direction some time ago, thanks to her and Jack, so at least they wouldn’t get kicked out of the library. Probably.
They didn’t, and in a few short days, the exams finally began.
Merida handled them the best she could. Meaning, she did not go running out of the exam hall like she wanted to and instead forced herself to scribble down a few answers, some of them likely nonsense, and then spent the rest of her time either staring blankly at her paper or else gazing longingly out the sunlit window.
Or sometimes her eyes would just… drift to Rapunzel, who usually sat several rows ahead of her. It wasn’t hard to do. Rapunzel was very easy to notice, to the point where Merida wasn’t the only student who stared, and it wasn’t even so much for the hair, but for the flowers. Since Rapunzel had figured out how to create them, she’d just kept adding more and more flowers to her hair.
It got to the point where she had gotten in trouble for it, at least a few detentions, from what Merida knew. And for a few days afterwards Rapunzel’s hair would be flower-free, but sooner or later, no matter how long, the flowers would come back. They always did. Until eventually the professors had just seemed to give up and left her to it. And so, there Rapunzel sat in the exam hall, nibbling on her pen, a literal walking flower bush.
Merida didn’t get to ask her how her theory exams went until much later, but she at least knew that the practical exams were decidedly better. For Merida especially, in Charms and Flying, even in Transfiguration. So long as there was something that relied on muscle memory, then Merida found that she did remarkably better in it.
To her, it felt like the exams went on forever, like all of her summer was running away without her and there was nothing she could do about it. Until all at once, the exams were done.
One minute she stood in the Great Hall after her last exam, the next she was being tackled by her roommates, and then more and more people joined, until she was squished in the middle of what felt like every first year in her House.
The party in the dorms after the exams, followed by the last days she spent running outside in the sun before they finally allowed the students to go home, were the only things she missed from that time.
They were the things she held the closest as she said goodbye to the school. And, strangely enough, she felt a part of her leave her as she left. To settle itself on into the grass and trees and the deep, dark lake full of creatures only her House could see every night before they slept.
To stay where she would find it again. Waiting for her to return.
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A WIP Deltarune fic based on @smieska-draws' art of a blind Ralsei on the Light world! This will probably never be completed but I thought it was worth posting anyway.
“O-oh!” Ralsei squeaked. “I’m sorry!”
And he took his hat off. Susie’s eyes widened like she’d seen someone come back from the dead, and her jaw dropped.
Kris did not react.
Inside their mind, though, Kris was screaming, as they had been for every moment over the past day, and as they had been for every moment since they’d come into this strange world and heard their brother’s voice, seen his face hidden under the hat, heard his name clumsily anagrammed into something else.
The voice inside their head telling them what to do had gone suspiciously quiet, but like a puppet without a puppetmaster, there was still nothing they could do - they had arms, and they could not move, and a mouth, and they could not scream. No matter how much they tried to fight, they remained as stock-still as a statue. No matter how much they wanted to hug Ralsei - to hug their brother, because some stupid, irrational part of them was so sure he had to be him that they didn’t care how little sense that made - their legs refused to take a step forward.
Ralsei knew there was something “wrong” with them. He’d told them as much, when they’d been imprisoned in the jail cells, and the entity controlling them had turned its attention elsewhere. This was different than back then - they could still feel the soul pounding away in their hollow chest, even if it had stopped communicating - but Ralsei didn’t seem to notice the change. Though Kris knew that the truth was that, as he had been every moment they’d been together, he was only acting like nothing was out of the ordinary. It just made Kris want to scream even more.
Let me talk to him! they screamed, in their head, at nobody. That’s my brother! That’s my brother!
No, no, that wasn’t right.
That’s my friend!
“I hope I can see you again soon,” Ralsei said with a soft, sad smile, and Kris screamed no, no, no at the idea that they would be separated again, that Ralsei would be alone again, that their brother would be gone again. They couldn’t bear losing their brother again. No, that wasn’t right either. They couldn’t bear losing Ralsei. “Next time I’ll bake you lots of yummy cakes, alright?”
Susie looked incredibly confused, but her confusion was quickly replaced by annoyance.
“What the hell do you mean, ‘see you again soon’?” she demanded. “Ralsei, you’re coming with us.”
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“come on, give it a try. it’ll be funny.” ribbing kind of joke, with the way kankuro grins too wide.
the kind that has yuugiri frown, warnings going off in her head. “don’t you mean ‘fun’?”
“nope. funny.” pause. “come on.” his hand around her upper arm, encouraging her to keep up with him.
and she wasn’t one to find her feet to argue here. clicks her tongue, and yuugiri wasn’t able to resist the way he smiles in the sun now. full force, as if he knew. resounding thought of well, shit that hits her full force once again, and they take to crossing buildings, feet carrying them the rest of the way. tomorrow, she’d turn him down.
“this better not be like last time…”
“that was funny. and you know it was!”
“kankuro,” she drawls out his name, hitting every note. “you scared me half to death. it wasn’t funny.”
“yeah, yeah. you’ll grow a sense of humour soon, i know.” waves her off, like he always does. smile switching gears, brows drawing in. ah, she knew that look. “i promise i won’t do it again.”
her like hell goes unsaid, as yuugiri could just roll her eyes. follows him the rest of the way, ducking under his arm when he finally draws to a stop, holding the curtain back. one of the workshops scattered around. from the way he’d talked, yuugiri had half expected him to set up his own someone closer to home, but he hadn’t decided on a place. just moved between all the ones available.
following him closely, though. they weren’t alone in this one, and yuugiri could only peer into the rooms, seeing varying skill levels before her. ones that didn’t appreciate being watched, even if kankuro was leading her onwards and upwards. another beat of a thought: good thing she wasn’t a spy. good thing she’d left that life behind.
good thing, she thinks once they find a private room that had all the hallmarks of kankuro’s work, that she was trying to turn over a new leaf.
whatever she was mulling over, he didn’t notice. starting a conversation halfway through. “yeah, i know you have some thread control—”
kind of conversation that she was able to cut into, easy. like they’d been doing this for years. “excellent control, fuck you.”
“—but this is different. it’s more…” fingers spread, painting an image only he can see. she didn’t want to hear the waxing of poetry, and moved on. spying in the corner something that had been newly carved, yet not fitted out completely. perfect.
shake of hand, threads snapping to connect to parts of the puppet, as he says the word, “artistic.” all of which gets her a scandalised gasp. “that’s not how you do it!”
“just because you can pick up and throw weapons around doesn’t mean you can just make a puppet walk like—”
gangly, but moving. her fingers not quite as practiced. it was all kinds of infuriating whilst also giving him reason to just watch as she moved thumb, little finger, middle. trying to work out all the technicalities. she hadn’t quite placed the threads to where it would be most effective, or thought out. both hands moving, as she pulls her right had across her body, face reflecting a rather surprised expression as the puppet collapsed.
kankuro was equal parts amused, but his hands were on hers. encouraging. all smarmy and full of shit, but there was no denying that, well. “if you wanted to just get your arms around me, all you had to do was ask.” tilts her head back, against his shoulder. muscle in his cheek jumps, as he smothers a grin.
“no—well i mean, later—but come on, i wanna see you do this.” thread from a finger here, there, specifications that don’t quite mean anything to her. but they mean something to him, and the lines had been blurred for months. yuugiri couldn’t deny that.
so, she tries. despite her best efforts, she really does try. manages to at least get the puppet upright, moving. sailing through the air with some choice movements in fingers that earn her a laugh. kankuro’s hands do eventually leave hers, only to find themselves comfortably at her waist. hips.
“kankuro…” sing-song warning in her voice, one that he almost whistles nonchalantly to. not a care in the world. “we’re not alone here.” hand over his. not enough support on the puppet, as it falls, clattering to the floor.
low noise in the back of his throat, grip on her tightening. all at odds with the way he says, “don’t just drop the puppet like that.”
“oh, so now you’re more concerned about the puppet?” shrugging him off, yuugiri drops the rest of the threads. “honestly—”
“aw, don’t get mad,” spinning her around in his hands, kankuro walks her back. boxes her in, against a worktable. “maybe you’ll get the hang of it… one day.”
hands up in his face, pushing him back, yuugiri snorts. “uh huh. i’m sure.” moving to his cheeks, resting along the back of his neck, she winds her fingers into his hair. “y’know, i’m getting some conflicting feelings here.”
“what about?” mix of curiosity and concern in his voice. something that had her smile.
“i don’t really like an audience.”
“since they have eyes you can move.” finger pointed over his shoulder, to the array of puppets against the wall. “a little too much, even for me.”
“i scare you one time, and you just won’t let it go, huh.” but his lips are against her cheek, even as he chuckles. “so what do you wanna do then?”
yuugiri sighs against his lips. “come on, you dragged me all the way here so i could learn how to do this.”
“then let go.” breathy suggestion, knowing damn well she wouldn’t.
“mmm, in a minute.” happy sort of sigh, little laugh, arms wrapping around him now. ah, whatever. worry about it later.
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Prompt: Hear ye, hear ye, I humbly request from the fanfic goddess, a merlin fanfic of epic fluff proportions!! Lol I love your writing, can I request an Ace!Merlin and Ace!Arthur platonic love life bond?
Thanks for the request, babe! it seems fitting that on my birthday I get to upload a fic about ace qprs
Read on Ao3
Pairings: merthur qpr, implied morgwen
Warnings: none my dudes
Word Count: 1807
In the end, there’s no big celebrations.
Oh, Camelot has a feast to end all feasts, but that’s not the point.
There’s no big rushing into each other at the end of a hard-won fight, Arthur looking all stupidly heroic with his hair all sweaty or Merlin rippling with otherworldly power that makes men want to fall to their knees.
There’s no kiss after years and years of pining finally being deforested—get it?
“Shut up, Merlin.”
“What, that was a good one!”
—alright fine, there’s no big kiss, there’s no music that swells romantically in the background—
“Though not for lack of trying on your part, I’m sure.”
“Will you shut up, you prat, and let me talk?”
“It’s a wonder you ever stop talking.”
It’s the end of a fight. Everyone’s exhausted. There are heavy pants and the scrape of steel on steel from the trodden corners of the battlefield, as soldier after soldier, knight after knight, falls to the ground in a heap. Some get back up. Some don’t.
Arthur’s fingers fumble on the pommel of his sword. Huh. He needs to redo the grip on the left side. It’s fraying. His fingers are too clumsy. They won’t hold the damn thing properly. The chain mail keeps snagging where it’s come loose. He really needs to fix the grip.
The sword sings quietly as it slides home, back into the sheath, away, away. His breath leaves him in a rush and he looks up, looking around, counting.
Leon stands, already directing the survivors to start taking care of those they lost. He catches his king’s eye and nods. Once. Arthur nods back.
Gwaine pushes his hair out of his eyes and makes a joke. It’s what he does best. As the desperate chuckles start up again, Arthur’s mouth quirks up in a smile. Gwaine catches it.
Elyan strips the last of the shrapnel from someone’s wound and hauls them to their feet, a man of the people until his last. Arthur watches, paralyzed by the weight of the crown on his shoulders, as Elyan helps in ways he can’t.
Percival stands. Shadows Arthur as they start to move through the field. The weight is a little easier to bear now, as his breath starts to sink back into his chest.
Lancelot turns, smiles. Says ‘it’s good to see you,’ as if they’re just mates, running into each other after a long hard day. As if he’s about to buy Arthur a drink at the tavern and talk about the harvest, the new work from the blacksmith siblings, how much he misses looking up at the moon. Arthur just claps him on the shoulder.
Everyone’s here. Except—
So there’s no dramatic turn, no big flourish. Time doesn’t slow to a standstill as they rush into each other’s arms. The bards would be so bored, there’s no dramatic confessions, no infamous realizations, no murmured apologies through the hurried meeting of lips. What would they have to sing about?
Well, perhaps they could sing about this.
Arthur turns, sees Merlin standing there. He smiles. Merlin smiles back. There’s a little cut on Merlin’s shoulder. Barely enough to graze through the tunic, but enough to draw blood. Arthur frowns, stalks forward, gently tips Merlin’s head to the side so he can have a look.
“I’m fine, you prat.”
“You’ve managed to injure yourself.”
“Given how clumsy you are, I’d be surprised.”
Arthur presses gently over the cut. It’s nothing more than a scratch, should close by the end of the day. And yet Merlin just rolls his eyes and lays his hand over it. A moment of golden light later and it’s like nothing ever happened.
“There. Happy now?”
Merlin sighs and moves his head back. Arthur doesn’t. For a moment, their foreheads rest together.
Thank the heavens you didn’t die, I would’ve dragged you back here myself.
Just so you could kill me?
That’s all. Don’t look so disappointed, there needn’t be more.
The ride back to Camelot is slow. There’s work to be done along the way, after all. There are people to tend to, knights to bury and mourn, families to tell. There are knights that return to Camelot only for their hands to shake too much, their eyes to go too glassy. These knights leave with the highest honors Arthur can give them, thanked sincerely for their service and the knowledge that the people will forever be in their debt.
There are preparations to be made, hugs to give. Gwen throws herself into Elyan’s arms, Lancelot’s arms, Merlin’s arms, Arthur’s arms. Gaius isn’t far behind. Each of them breathes in the scent of the other. Home.
“So you missed me?”
“Of course I missed you!”
“I’ve got your favorite waiting, Merlin.”
“Oi! Why don’t I get a hug?”
“Oh, fine, come here.”
Arthur looks up to the top of the steps to see Morgana. No longer is she the intimidating figure cut from Camelot’s noble cloth, dressed up like Uther’s legacy, no. Just a simple dress, one of Gwen’s, her hair down around her shoulders in limp curls. If Arthur were someone else, he’d say she’d never looked better.
“Don’t tell her that.”
“I don’t need to, she knows.”
“What? She’s your sister.”
She smiles, a little dimmer, a little warier, as she descends the steps and holds out her arms. Arthur doesn’t hesitate.
His sister is here, finally recovered from her long fight with the magic Morgause wove through that horrid bracelet. Morgana hugs him back, tighter than they can imagine.
“I’m glad to see you,” Arthur mumbles into her shoulder.
“I’m happy you’re back.”
Merlin joins them a moment later and Morgana pulls him in too, laughing at Arthur’s affronted face when Merlin squawks and his elbow digs unceremoniously into his ribs.
“It hurt, you idiot.”
“She pulled me!”
“If you weighed more than a beanpole maybe that would help.”
“My weight is just fine, thank you very much.”
The feast is glorious. Food and wine flow freely out of the castle into the city below. The people dance, sing, yell, live. The city comes alive with the sound of its people. And that’s the end of the story.
They’re with the people they love.
“You can’t just leave it there, Merlin.”
“What happened to wanting to keep your privacy?”
“Just—get on with it.”
“Fine, you prat.”
It’s not entirely over. There are still nights where Merlin wakes up and his fingers tingle so much it feels like they’re about to fall off. Nights where he swears he hears a low rumbling voice in the back of his mind, feels giant hands on strings grafted to his arms. Nights where he still feels like Destiny’s puppet, strung along without a second thought.
There are still nights where Arthur can’t stop hearing the singing of steel and the weight of a sword in his hands. Nights when he can’t stop seeing Uther’s face, hearing his voice, seeing Morgana dead and twisted, broken on the ground. Nights when the flames rise high as knights—his knights—slaughter innocent people as part of a meaningless war.
There are still nights when they think they can hear each other screaming.
But Arthur is always there to roll over and wrap his arms tighter around Merlin. He’s here, he’s right here, and he’s warm, and nothing, nothing can take something away from Arthur once he’s decided it’s his. Merlin jolts awake to a cold nose pressed in the crook of his neck, sleepy declarations of ‘mine, my Merlin, go away, leave my Merlin alone, he’s mine, you can’t have him.’ Or it will be to tender words, gentle hands shaking him away, whispered promises of ‘you’re here, it’s alright, I’ll keep you safe, you did it.’
And Merlin is always there when Arthur clenches the pillow so hard he looks like he’s going to break his fingers, there to gentle them away and pull him close, tuck his head under his chin and say ‘it’s over now, it’s safe now, they’re all safe, they’re all safe.’ Arthur wakes up to rough tunics, slim fingers woven through his own, the warmth of someone else who won’t ever leave. Or just the weight of an arm or leg thrown across his middle. It’s just enough to wake him up and realize that there is someone who, even in sleep, wants to hold him close.
In the morning, Merlin will wake before Arthur does. The morning will ruffle along the edge of the curtains and he’ll shiver, hiding a little further under the covers. Arthur will hold him closer, unwilling to give up his heat source just yet. Some days, Merlin will let him, falling back asleep with his fingers carding through Arthur’s hair.
But on most days, he carefully separates himself and tucks Arthur back up, pulling on his clothes and moving to get their breakfast set up. His fingers will brush a vase and a bouquet of flowers will bloom, one of the side effects of training with Morgana. He’ll smile and pick one out to give to Gwen.
Arthur will wake slowly, first reaching out to feel where Merlin’s gone, then sitting up to spot him at the window, or the table, or right next to him, comb in hand. He’ll grumble, saying Merlin gets up too quickly, only for Merlin to laugh and pull him up to eat.
The sun will rise through the curtains as they eat, get dressed, and leave to go about their days. The door will close softly behind them, waiting to open again once the day is over.
There’s no furious declarations of love, no gritting of teeth as they fight to make the world change. Just slow, steady, constant. A touch of a hand here, a brush here. A knowing look or a quick jab. Nothing rough, just soft.
They deserve a soft epilogue.
“Hmm. Should’ve known you’d get all sappy.”
“You like me sappy.”
“I think I should go see Gaius, my teeth are starting to hurt.”
“You love it.”
“Did Arthur Pendragon just admit I was right?”
“He did! He definitely did!”
“Shut up, Merlin.”
Morgana just rolls her eyes and wraps her arms around Gwen to watch the two of them bicker.
“He’s right, though,” Gwen murmurs after a moment, leaning back to look up at her, “they do deserve a soft epilogue.”
Morgana smiles. “I think we all do.”
She’s right and she should say it.
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I really liked your 'Life Preserver' excerpt and I'd love to read more about it. I liked the interaction between Gerry and Georgie, their characterization and Gerry's description of his relationship with Jon, plus this exchange: “He thinks your mum’s a homophobe, you know.”“You know, he’s probably right? Think she might just hate the idea of love in general, though.”“Messy divorce, I take it,”“Rohypnol and garden shears were involved, so yeah, I’d say it was pretty messy.”
Yeah, Gerry and Georgie surprised me as a really interesting dynamic to explore. In spite of Georgie’s caution around the Entities, Gerry just feels like the kind of person Georgie would get along with, given the people she canonically ends up loving.
Anyway here’s another part I’ve written! This one actually has Jon and Gerry in it.
When Jon went in for his next shift, things went smoothly enough to be genuinely suspicious. Tina was his desk partner again, and she greeted him with the same cordiality as always. No one official-looking ever came by to speak with him.
The only hint that anything had happened that night was a campus-wide e-mail paying respects to Daniel Lattimer, one of the subject librarians, who was reported as having “passed unexpectedly”. The message held all of the usual official platitudes and nothing else; Jon had read it word for word several times to be sure.
Someone should have known, shouldn’t they? It wasn’t as if he had been careful about covering his tracks, beyond making his tip anonymous. The library had cameras. He was sure he’d left at least a few shoe prints in all the blood.
But nothing came of it. The first hour passed peacefully, with nothing more exciting than a couple of patrons he had to inform of overdue books.
Jon spotted the familiar dark figure out of the corner of his eye, even before Tina hissed a warning at him. He raised his head to watch Gerard Keay’s approach, chest suddenly tight with nervousness.
How on earth was he supposed to explain this?
“Hey.” Gerard was in front of him already, leaning his elbows on the desk as usual. “Any word on that book? I tried to come in yesterday, but you were closed.”
“R-right.” Jon hesitated. There were several ways he could answer this. He could, of course, be utterly truthful and tell him that he’d burned the thing on account of it being made of meat and killing one of the librarians. He almost laughed at the thought. At worst, Gerard would complain to someone about Jon being unhelpful; at best, he’d find it funny, but he’d demand a real answer once he was done laughing about it.
He could lie and stall by saying that the book was still on its way. But that was a temporary fix at best, and it would only lead Gerard to keep coming in and asking.
And would that really be so bad? Jon shook his head to clear away the thought.
“Right,” he said again. “A-about that. Unfortunately—” He slipped his bandaged hand behind the desk, out of sight. “—we were unable to find the book in storage. It seems to have been marked incorrectly. It happens sometimes. Though not very often, I assure you,” he added hastily. “But it’s been marked down as missing, I’m afraid.”
“Oh.” Gerard’s face was the very picture of disappointment. “That’s a shame. Really did need that one.”
“Terribly sorry for the inconvenience.” Jon tried to sound like he meant it.
It was hard to force down the sheer, overwhelming relief. Just last night he’d regretted his own paranoia, but now? If he hadn’t gone back, if he hadn’t checked for the book…
Well, the library might not have been closed yesterday. And he didn’t have the first shift at the circulation desk. And whoever did might have been someone who didn’t know, someone who wasn’t haunted by the name Jurgen Leitner, who might have taken the book from the cart and handed it straight over—
The unwelcome memory of Mr. Lattimer’s body rose up behind his eyes, juxtaposed over the young man standing before him.
As a child, he’d doomed someone else to a gruesome death that should have been his. So maybe this time… maybe he’d actually…
“Well then,” said Gerard, shaking him out of his bubble of thoughts. “Guess that’s—er, guess I’ll look elsewhere…”
“Right,” said Jon. “Unless there was anything else you needed…?” He tried not to sound too hopeful.
“No, thanks, that’s it,” said Gerard, already turning away. “Thanks for all the help.”
“Oh, I hardly—I mean, I didn’t really do much, in the end.”
Gerard regarded him for a moment, head tilted to one side with a thoughtful look. Then, quite without warning, he smiled at him. “Don’t sell yourself short. You were great.”
“O-of course,” Jon stammered as Gerard turned to leave again. “Oh, wait—wait a moment.”
Gerard looked back. “Yeah?”
Jon dug into his pocket, pulling out the lighter. “Is this yours?” he asked, placing it on the desk. “I found it on one of the tables in the reading room, and I remembered you had it the other day…”
Instead of taking it, Gerard simply flashed him one last grin. “Keep it,” he said. “I’ve got loads.”
“It’s really not good to keep ignition sources in a library,” Jon protested, feeling inordinately flustered.
Gerard laughed, a brief, bright thing, and—
“D’you want to get coffee?” Jon blurted out.
The smile froze on Gerard’s face, before giving way to surprise. “What?”
A stab of terror nearly robbed Jon of his words, before he found his voice again and forged ahead. “Do you—I mean. Do you want to get coffee sometime?” he repeated. Shit. Shit, he was doing this, how was he already doing this? “With me?” He wanted to kick himself, of course he’d know he meant it that way. “I—my shift ends at noon today. If you’re free. I-if you want to, I mean.”
Gerard blinked at him, so utterly bewildered that it might have been funny if Jon’s heart weren’t currently climbing into his throat. “You—wait. Is this… are you asking me on a date?”
He said it so incredulously, as if the idea that Jon would ask him on a date were utterly incomprehensible to him. Rapidly, Jon’s heart sank back down.
“Yes,” Tina leapt in helpfully. “He is. Aren’t you, Jon?”
She nudged him none too gently. “Y-yes,” he said, because it wasn’t as if he could dig himself any deeper. “That—that was the intention.”
“Huh.” Gerard shrugged. “Sure.”
The whiplash made Jon dizzy for a moment. “Really?”
“Yeah. Noon, right? See you then.” With that, he turned and walked out of the library.
Once he was out of sight, Jon slumped over onto the surface of the desk like a marionette with its strings cut.
Tina patted his back. “Proud of you. Go get that goth D.”
It wasn’t that Gerry didn’t know it was a terrible idea—just that he’d had worse ones before. He was still breathing after years of them, in fact. So what was one more?
Jon the librarian was far from the first scarred survivor he’d ever met. They weren’t common, precisely, but nor were they unheard of. Technically he was one, and Mum had been as well, before she carved herself up.
But Gerry knew he was an outlier, and as rare as surviving one brush with the Fears was, meeting two of the things and escaping uneaten from both was on a level of its own. But against all odds, when he looked at the wispy little librarian who’d spent the past week being so divertingly helpful, Gerry could see two separate, distinct marks on him, where there had previously been only one. And they really were distinct from one another. The Flesh was like a shark sometimes, content to take one good bite before losing interest and wandering off, while the wisps of the Web still clung jealously. A scar like that could have been left years ago or the day before they met. You could never tell with the Web.
That added to the risk, of course. For all he knew, this was some ploy from the Mother of Puppets to catch him and draw him in. A little cliche, maybe, but Gerry couldn’t fault it for its efficacy.
He’d said yes, after all.
In his defense, it wasn’t every day he met someone with a nice face, a taste for burning Leitners, and enough luck or fortitude to walk away from two different Powers. Nor was it every day a person like that asked him to… well…
People didn’t flirt with him, was the thing. Anyone who knew enough to be worth talking to either wised up and ran the other way, or turned around and tried to take a chunk out of him.
So, yeah. Might as well give it a shot. See what it was like, while he had the chance.
He had til noon to brace himself, anyway. Not enough time to go back to Mum’s and freshen up, which was a shame. She’d just faded out a couple of days ago, so he knew he’d have the place to himself.
In spite of himself, Gerry found himself turning his face upward with a grin and an excited spring in his step. It’d be a bit like traveling abroad, or visiting tourist traps, or all the other things he indulged in when Mum was gone. See as much of the world beyond his own as he could, before she finally fucked up and got him killed.
A date! Who’d have thought he’d get to check that one off the bucket list?
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Conquest - Ethan Ramsey x MC (Tiffany Addams)
This isn’t an ordinary night for Detective Ramsey and she’s no ordinary thief.
Warnings: EXPLICIT (+18) - don’t read this fic if you’re a minor!
The story covers topics not suitable for every audience, such as: role play, light dom/sub and handcuff fun. If you’re not comfortable with these themes, steer clear of this piece.
Author’s note: In the end I didn’t plan on publishing this bad boy here, but some of you lovelies made me change my mind, so here it is, just for you (you know who you are): my experimental self-indulgence aka the filthiest fic I have ever written. If it flops, I’m disappearing forever, bye fsdjfksj
Song/title inspiration: Conquest by The White Stripes
The sweetest & most talented @aarisa-frost gifted me with a fantastic art based on one of the scenes from this fic! ❤️ Make sure to check it HERE
If anything, he was eminently suited to the task. Literally and figuratively.
Wearing a brand new suit that cost more than he was usually willing to spend. Waiting for his target in the middle of a sumptuous hotel corridor, trying to blend in a crowd of strangers swarming around with faces as clear and telling as crystal.
Everything around him was crystal. From meticulously detailed chandelier to stylish glass walls in accord with an aesthetic spectacle of opulence and avarice he'd rather choose to avoid.
Everything was crystal clear until he recognized a face emerging from the elevator. Vivid mental picture of the woman he'd been chasing for years reappeared in his mind.
The most dangerous woman in the whole wide world.
Her every step a soundless adagio, drawing furtive glances from random people passing her by. Obsidian cloud flowed behind her, falling on her bare shoulders elegantly. She came across as a delight rather than a notorious thief—but such was her game to play.
She was the risk he was willing to take.
Supposedly, some fool fell under her deadly spell and never recovered. Another vague and exaggerated rumor claimed she could destroy a man with just one look. Assessing her now, head to toes, at a safe distance, he deemed her more of a vixen than a basilisk.
He sneaked behind her to the lobby, following the vicious clicking of her stilettos and the mist of extravagant perfume. That luscious scent lured him in like he was moth and she was flame; it was a weapon powerful enough to take a man down, unlike anything else he'd smelled before: some distinct floral notes (dainty violet and rich tuberose?) mixed with creamy vanilla. But he was immune, he told himself, immune to such temptations.
The luxurious lounge bar was her final destination. She sat still—alone, impatient; the river of her silk nacreous dress ran down the barstool, with a far from modest slit exposing her shapely legs. Her cherry red lips sank into the tall glass, sipping on a straw yellow bubbly drink, with eyes as sharp as daggers scanning the room. Alert, but unaware. Carefree in her compromised position.
Could she feel his eyes piercing her, keeping her under surveillance like a lion's eye watching its prey before the attack?
A rush of adrenaline stirred his sound judgement as he kept on investigating his target. He was alone with her in a room full of strangers. Just him and that salacious need to get close to the danger incarnate.
Suddenly, he felt his meticulous plan evaporate like an alien thought; he had no tactics, no back-up story to cover his real identity.
But he had a mission to accomplish.
The surroundings instantly blurred into slow motion when her come-hither gaze landed on him. They surveyed each other from across the room, the moment exceedingly long, even though it barely lasted a minute. She cut through the invisible tension with a beguiling smile—all kinds of life-ruining, stab-in-the-heart distracting, as dangerous as a loaded gun.
Before he registered the movement, his feet were already carrying him towards her.
Long, seemingly nonchalant strides led him to the bar filled with noisy strangers too occupied with their mundane, lavish lives to acknowledge his presence.
A pair of emerald eyes wouldn't leave him be; the second they met his blues, his heart jumped to match a well-known symphony.
Something passed between them immediately. Magnetic, raw, lingering. She was nothing like other hotel guests, oozing dangerous allure and exceptional confidence. Many would call her intimidating. But she wasn't—not to him.
„What's the occasion?” A hint of a smile lifted the corners of his mouth, bringing a disarming smugness to her lips.
„Must there be an occasion? Can't a girl fancy some bubbles?”
„How about you try a glass of 12-year-old whiskey with me.” Full stop, no question marks. However random, the offer wouldn't bend to rejection.
Her smile widened, dense lashes swept down as she focused on his fingers tapping a frustrating melody on the wooden surface. A wince of fear crossed his features when he realized she must have spotted the barely noticeable imprint of his wedding band.
„How would your wife react if she knew you're buying a random girl a drink at a hotel bar?”
He shot her a cold look—at least that was his sole and failed intention; he was merely a puppet on a string, her sultry gaze controlling his moves. The evanescent glow in her eyes sparkled like bubbles in her champagne, waking up a pleasant flutter in his stomach.
„She's...Out of the picture.”
And the woman in front of him was anything but a random girl.
She nodded, pursing her lips in interest as if she tried to accustom the newly acquired information to her devious plans. „So you're on your own.”
„I'm on my own.”
She eyed him up and down, then up again, wetting her lip with successful intent on stoking his interest. „Perfect.”
He waved at the bartender with his order and landed in the empty seat right next to the raven-haired woman. Perfectly winged feline flick framed her eyes, adding spine-tingling mystique to the extraordinary green coruscating like emeralds in the subdued bar lighting.
Two glasses of cold, burnished gold liquor soon clinked loudly in a silent celebration. He peeked at his hand, heaved a deep sigh and proposed a toast. „To risks and rewards.”
„To life-changing encounters.” Words fell off her lips like melting honey, and if he didn't know any better, he would let them stick. Austere whiskey burned its way down their throats before she spoke up again. „The name is Hunter.”
„Hunter.” He repeated, his brows cocked up slightly, giving sign of his amusement as he took another sip of his drink. „Very fitting.”
„Quit the game, Addams. I know what you're up to and it ends now.”
Her electrifying gaze broke through his act, making him feel exposed, stripped of the restraint he diligently practised. The fissure in his meticulous defence became her target and her infamous reputation claimed she'd never missed her shots.
The air got sticky thick, unbearably so; it had everything to do with her tongue sliding languorously along the rim of her glass as she fixed him with a suggestive look like she was about to devour him.
A tingle of fright prickled his skin at the sudden realization: he'd eagerly let her do that. He'd let her do anything. The ridiculous legend suddenly didn't seem so silly now that he stared into the witch-bright eyes of danger, entranced and defenseless.
But then she dared to move forward—one step too far from sanity. Cautious of her wicked intentions, his hand reached to grab her arm almost instinctively. The diamond bracelet glimmering on her wrist in 18k gold wobbled at the sudden invasion of her personal space the same way her heart did.
„You're coming with me.”
„You'll have to work on that.” She winked, biting at her lip seductively. Her challenging giggle roused him as she edged closer, lowering her voice to a smoky whisper. „Are you going to cuff me up here, Ramsey?”
The quiet clunk in his pocket made him acutely aware of the uncomfortable piece of metal he would soon have to use on her. But it wasn't the time.
„I assumed you have a dignity of some sorts and won't cause a scene.”
„You think you know me, Detective?” Her free arm reached him, slim fingers clasped the lapels of his charcoal jacket, sliding down, tracing his chest through the smooth material of his shirt, then stomach, until her palm rested on his inner thigh. „I've left my dignity at home.”
Unblinking, he swallowed loud, paralyzed by her gutsy endeavor and the overfamiliar motion in his pants. His hand covered hers, preventing any upward movement she shamelessly intended to make. „Count yourself lucky, you won't be needing it where I'm taking you.”
Coruscant emeralds studied him with rigorous assessment, a glint of amusement in them difficult to catch. „Are you here to arrest me or seduce me?”
„I haven't decided yet.” He wasn't intimidated and the conclusion was definitive. He simply found her irresistible.
„Do you want me to make this decision for you?”
The distance between them shrank significantly and his mind went into overdrive. Her heady perfume meddled with his rational stream of thoughts, feeding the self-indulgent monster kept in hiding at all costs.
The decision had been made long before this night.
They stepped into the darkness of his room, girdled by the peace and quiet punctuated only by the sound of her heels and their uneven breaths. Her wrists remained hidden in his grip as he guided her through the short corridor. Fire spreading in his veins became impossible to contain, her presence devastating like a box of matches in the most careless hands.
But he knew the drill, he remembered how to keep his cool while burning up in flames. It was a dutiful ordeal, nothing more, he convinced himself.
„I admire your bravery, Detective.” Her silvery voice broke the silence. „You must've heard all about my reputation.”
„From where I'm standing...” His hot whiskey breath pinched her neck as he tightened the grip on her wrists, pushing her gently to the wall. „You seem entirely powerless.”
She laughed diabolically, balancing herself in the space he caged her in. „Not entirely.”
True to her words, she pulled back, crashing with his body. With languid, grinding motion she rubbed her bottom against his hardening member, igniting the fire he desperately tried to douse.
„But you're in charge here, right?” She quipped with a sultry voice.
In that particular moment, playing by her rules, as his hips instinctively responded to her every move craving to feel her skin on skin, he appeared to be the powerless one.
Ignoring her ministrations, he brought her closer in an attempt to regain control. „Are you armed?”
„Am I armed?” Her head tilted back to the sound of her audacious giggle. „Where would I hide a weapon in that dress?”
„Hell knows. Maybe there's a blade strapped against your thigh.”
Two seconds of meaningful silence and one knowing look were enough for an idea to form inside her sharp mind.
„Maybe there is.” That downright provocative purr a well-aimed bullet almost piercing right through him. „Why don't you check it yourself?”
She didn't have to repeat twice. One of his hands kept her wrists trapped, the other travelled down with the silk to the front of her dress, diving between its folds.
Greeted by the cashmere-like softness of her thighs, he moved further, letting his hand slip up her bare leg torturously slow, priding himself in the way she held her breath when he ran his check-up.
He found no weapon hidden under her dress. But his curious fingers didn't stop there; he continued the journey up, merely brushing her skin, until hot, slick discovery welcomed him between her legs.
Dignity wasn't the only thing she left at home.
„Christ.” A quiet growl escaped his mouth when his digits dived into her slit. „You're dripping wet. I could just take you right now.”
Her face schooled with indifference, jerking slightly in his direction, lips like poison ready to betray her excitement. „Fucking take me then.”
„Not so fast.” His husky whisper only tightened her features with impatience, but it disappeared when two fingers plunged into her without a warning.
Violent shiver ran through her body, sharp breathing in sync with those teasing, frantic movements perfectly coordinated with each and every pump. Her walls instantly clenched around his long fingers plundering her rhythmically.
He was suddenly taken aback by her audacious defiance melting down quickly as she surrendered to his expert fingering. But it wasn't enough—she had to climb higher. Fulfilling the unspoken wish, he added a tantalizing brush of his thumb circling around her clit.
It was a cruel trick, even for him. He could pinpoint the exact moment when she began giving in to the pleasure he offered. She wouldn't show it out of spite and the position he caged her in, but he could feel everything. The unreal mix of sticky warmth, soundless panting and desperation pressing hard into his own arousal left no place for interpretation: she was under his absolute control, ready to fall apart any second.
But it wasn't the time.
With ruthless, swift motion and a loud pop, he pulled out his fingers mere seconds before her inevitable climax. The abrupt and unexpected affront made her groan in fury. He kept her firm against his chest as she tried to regain control of her trembling limbs; her shivering body lurched forward with a soft thud, pressing her cheek against the cold surface of the wall.
He'd never seen anything, anyone as sensational as the mess he just made of her.
„You're going to pay for this.” She mumbled, the confidence flickering in her quiet declaration reminded him she was not to be underestimated.
„Am I?” Teasing her was both exhilarating and satisfying, a combination as dangerous as the power she posessed over him. He nipped at the shell of her ear then slowly ran his tongue along the sensitive skin. A strangled moan was the only response she could produce.
„Strip.” He followed with a command, releasing her wrists.
Securing her freedom, she took two long steps into the bedroom, every sway of her hips inspected and assessed with barely restrained anticipation. The flimsy fabric of her dress pooled at her feet in a flash, offering her sylphlike silhouette on a moonlit platter. All her closely-guarded secrets out in the glimmer of the night, waiting to be unearthed. He had to make sure no detail would escape his attention.
He switched the lights on and approached his companion. The light fell on her curves with its warm hues, allowing his eyes to launch a further investigation. Was he still the same person that walked into the bar that night? He now reminded a starved man, almost losing control at the sight of the most enchanting woman he'd ever met wearing nothing but a pair of high heels and a ridiculously expensive bracelet.
The airtight space around them had no mercy, much like her money-green winning eyes burning through his skull to plant a hoard of treacherous thoughts. A mix of memories and images stripped from his fantasies flashed between his eyes.
Tiny, confident smirk twisting her scandalous lips didn't stop him. She could've read his mind and witness all the obscenities he craved to do to her, to do with her, and he didn't care. He didn't care one bit. He devoured her, painting her cheeks devil-red with the way his jaw tensed as his eyes ogled her naked silhouette, ready to kneel at her feet and send her to the stars.
But he had a role to play.
„What now, Detective?” The innocent tone of her voice a stark contrast to the twinkle of mischief taunting him under the flutter of dense lashes.
Despite his better knowledge, he inched forward, straining himself to keep his gaze away from her perfect form. He tilted her chin up, grazing her jaw gently.
„Now I'm going to take my prize.” His fingers clawed deeper, pulling her face close to his, so close their breaths formed a temporary alliance.
Mere seconds later his lips were on hers, intense and barbaric, feeding from the drugging sweetness of her mouth like his life depended on it. They honed in on the kiss, lost in the warmth and closeness, the unmistakeable harmony between them.
But then her hands travelled where they shouldn't, straight to his pants, eager and intent. Before she managed to get past the belt, he clapped hold of her wrists again.
„I know you want me to touch you.” Suave whisper fell into his mouth, voicing her demands. „Let me.”
The minx was absolutely right—he craved her lips pressed on every inch of his skin, hands roaming in a frenzy. He needed to feel her more than anything.
But there were roles to play.
He pinned her wrists above her head, the authority in his tone stood no questioning. „You're in no position to bargain. You'll do as I say.”
Their eyes remained locked and for a fleeting second her glowing green darkened as she let out a soundless sigh of defeat. „Yes, sir.”
That unexpected obedience stirred something inside of him—something barely existing, hidden deep in the vault of his mind, something primal and unforgiving. Following that thought, he freed one of his hands, letting his thumb wander to her lips. She responded instinctively by taking it all in her mouth, sucking it with special dedication as if she tried to change his mind and let her take control.
But she had other role to play.
„Lie on the bed.”
Instead of an approving nod, she twirled around and climbed up the king-sized bed, eagerly falling on all fours with black leather stilettos still covering her feet.
„No.” He grumbled, admiring her body in all its glory—a flawless sculpture inviting him closer, shimmering like a glittering veil. „On your back. I want to watch you fall apart.”
The corners of her mouth quirked up at his command. Unprecedentedly obedient, she changed her position accordingly.
„Arms up. Put your hands on the headboard.”
„Wait.” She interrupted. „The bracelet.”
She fumbled with the clasp, her manicured nails struggling to open the damn thing. Just when he rushed to help, the bracelet opened and dropped on the bed. Smiling invitingly, she was ready to act on his instructions.
The handcuffs finally left his pocket. He carefully adjusted each ring around her wrists and locked it to the metal slats of the bed. Her breath hitched at the novelty of the sensation, but she wouldn't move.
„Is it too tight?” He asked, a hint of worry evident in his tone and the gentleness coloring his ocean eyes.
She shook her head with a reassuring grin. „The cuffs, you mean? I'm comfortable enough.”
He ran his thumb along her pulse slowly and watched her shift in the sheets. The 30-thousand-dollar diamond bracelet rolled off the bed unnoticed like a worthless piece of metal akin to the glossy, silver handcuffs now clung to the delicate skin of her wrists.
„Still scared of me, Detective?” She purred with a roguish smile hidden behind a few strands of raven locks falling on her rosy-flushed face.
A gentle scoff split the thick air of visceral thrill between them. „Scared of what I want to do to you.”
Her playful smile turned wicked, bordering on obscene, as her tongue flicked across those criminal lips.
Curbing the inclination to just slam into her and leave her breathless, he got rid of his shoes and jacket, letting them fall on the floor. His hand reached up, unbuttoning his shirt slowly. Button after button, exposing more and more skin, sharpening her appetite until the fabric slid off his broad shoulders.
She watched him hypnotized, rubbing her thighs in a quiet desperation, impatient and disobedient. The painful strain in his pants hurried the spontaneous spectacle, rushing him to fling the rest of his clothes off.
She was his, at last.
The finest silk lay in front of him, legs spread wide, begging to be touched. Eagerly accepting the invitation, he kneeled closer, lowering himself to her breasts. His lips circled over her nipple, tongue twirling languidly while his hands roamed over her body. She ate up her moans, nibbling at her lip as his generous lips and fingers moved around, lavishing her with skillful caress.
But he had a role to play.
The in-depth exploration was about to continue even deeper. He positioned himself between her legs and swiped his cock along her folds—slowly, teasingly, then did it again, and again, mindlessly rubbing her wet centre. Taking his precious time just to have her writhing under him. Tipping her over the edge while trying not to lose his own scraps of restraint.
His sapphires, clouded by raw hunger, transferred all the unspoken thoughts by a single look. And he was a goner.
For a split second, she was no vixen, no thief, no ordinary prey. The gentleness coloring her eyes bright green reminded him of the vibrant feeling thundering in his chest as if his heart jumped to greet its owner.
Perhaps that was the essence of her danger—the sheer affection dripping from her tongue as they kissed, the tender yet needy caress of her lips, her sweaty body clinging to him as if she tried to get into his bloodstream to infuse it with the love she had to offer to him. Perhaps...
Subjecting to further torture, he sank deep into her in one, clean thrust, only to pull back instantly. The obscenities she screamed coordinated with his groan spilling out as he plunged deeper a moment later, inch by inch, spreading her walls impossibly wider. The handcuffs rattled as she quivered slightly, slamming her eyes shut; her legs caged him in a desperate attempt to hold tight onto him.
„Open your eyes.” He commanded, grabbing her by the throat with gentle pressure. „Look at me.”
She did as she was told, forcing herself to meet his gaze, struggling so beautifully as he pressed harder and thrusted deeper.
„G-God...” She mumbled, arching her back. „You're huge.”
He chose the wordless response, bucking up to rock his hips against her in a steady, experimental pace. The unholy melody produced by their bodies filled the room, only adding to the passion burning them from within.
„Harder.” The request turned into a moan, all but lost in the sound of their heavy breaths and febrile bodies fixed in a dynamic rhythm.
A wolfish smirk crossed his face as he dragged his tongue flat between her breasts, all the way up her neck.
„P-Please...I need more.”
Wasting no time, he paced up, rushing into her relentlessly; every thrust surging fast, gloriously torturous, too shallow to make her come just yet, but teasing enough to drive her insane. That was his game to play. Sweet little payback.
Her ecstatic mewls stopped abruptly a few snaps later; her eyes zoned off and body trembled under his weight, still moving with him even more frantically than before. That's how he knew she was close. They ran nip and tuck, chasing their high with tireless dedication.
His fingers crawled around her throat again, squeezing it lightly as he groaned into her ear, giving in to the pleasure rippling through him. His pace faltered, but the intensity built with those final, triumphant pumps made her body arch to meet his like two puzzle pieces perfectly matching on every edge and curve.
It was their night.
Her mouth parted in a soundless cry of overwhelming bliss he kissed off her when orgasm hit them simultaneously and they soaked in each other completely.
She was his.
Vibrant Miami sunlight flooded the room like a foamy billow, warming Ethan's cheeks instead of a sleepy good morning kiss he was used to receive. The empty space next to him and quiet of the hotel room punched him in the gut as soon as his heavy-lidded eyes adjusted to the blinding light, before he realized he was being watched.
The corners of his mouth curved up in a lethargically blissful smile at the sight of the messy-haired ethereal vision splayed on the couch; the marks on her alabaster skin, his marks, on display in the glowing sun.
„You got me worried for a second. Thought you'd ran away.”
„On our anniversary? I'm not cruel.” Tiffany winked, sending him a disarming smile. „I'd wait at least two days.”
With measured elegance, she strolled across the room to join him in bed. The satin robe loosely hugging her naked body slid off her shoulders as she slipped under the sheets next to her husband.
Their bodies collided instantly, by design, as if they were made for each other. Maybe they were. Maybe the universe pulled some strings to put their lives together.
„I'd find a way to keep you around.” Ethan whispered, placing a soft kiss on her temple. His hands wrapped around her tight, fixing her position on top of him.
„Hopefully with no handcuffs involved.” Concern clouded his features and for once her giggle didn't bring a smile to his face. She immediately bit her lip with a late shot of regret, but Ethan was faster.
„No, I'm not hurt, Ethan.” She cupped his face, diving straight into the depths of his ocean blue eyes. „Last night was a movie and I thoroughly enjoyed it.”
„We should've bought the other set.” Those horrid furry handcuffs, he added in his mind as his lips kept on brushing the remnants of their eventful night stamped lightly on her wrists.
Tiffany chuckled, twisting out of his embrace to straddle him. „Yeah, and call some porn lord to film our sex tape while we're at it.”
His eyes eagerly drank her in, lazy hand moved up her stomach. „It's not like we were convincing in our roles anyway.”
She lowered herself to claim his lips in a slow, intense kiss. „Well, you were infinitely more convincing than the last time we tried role play.”
„I suppose I make a better detective than a patient.”
„And I did steal something of high value.” Two wide beams lit the room simultaneously, while her fingertips traced his chest right where the heart was.
„You couldn't steal something that had already belonged to you.” Tiffany stared into his eyes with newfound intensity; the meaning of Ethan's words and the tenderness vibrating in his voice brought her near to tears.
She quickly hid the sentiment with her usual cheekiness. „My, oh my, Doctor Ramsey. Are you finally agreeing with my theory?”
„Evidence gathered over the years has certainly proven it might be true.”
„I'll gladly take the challenge and provide you with conclusive proof.”
Their lips reunited, fierce and needy, spent bodies slowly but surely waking up to the overfamiliar beat of their hearts. She was the beginning and ending of all things. The beginning, ending, and everything in between. Both chaos and peace. Disturbance and comfort. Safety and danger. With that sudden thought, he melted into her again and again.
„Do you think it's absolutely necessary that we get out of bed for breakfast?” Tiffany panted into his mouth, interrupting a series of all-consuming kisses.
Ethan's hand raked through her locks, moving them out of her face. „I say we should call for room service.”
„Let's do that.” She nodded, punctuating every word with a loud peck on his lips. The blissfully innocent moment had no chance to last. „I want to switch.”
„Hmm?” He swallowed loud, feeling her penetrating gaze burning his skin.
„I told you yesterday...You're going to pay for what you did.” She was whispering again, the tone of her voice demanding, igniting his blood with fire. „It's my turn to tie you up and ride you into the sunset.”
„What about that museum trip you were so excited about?” He teased her with unbothered expression.
Her smug smile was nothing but trouble coming his way. „There's a different museum I'd like to visit today.”
It took all his willpower to stop himself from snorting with laughter. He quirked his brows instead, seemingly unamused. „Hilarious as ever.”
Tiffany on the other hand couldn't stifle the urge to laugh at her own joke. She laughed for a good minute until another change of weather cast upon her.
Suddenly, her lips landed on his jaw, moving down his neck, nibbling and kissing the skin on the journey south. Her hand wasn't as attentive—it slipped down directly to its destination.
„It can wait until tomorrow. I'm also very excited about sucking the life out of you and that cannot wait.”
That couldn't wait, obviously, growing rock hard within seconds under the caress of her fingers. Ethan took a deep breath, jerking his hips to the rhythm of her languid strokes.
„You drive a hard bargain...I have no choice but to fully comply with your request.”
Their eyes remained locked, blazed with burning need, with knowing smiles flickering on their faces. „Sure you can keep up, old man?
„Why don't you check it yourself?”
If you’ve gotten this far - kudos! I love you. Hope you enjoyed this wild ride as much as I had fun writing it. It’s late, so I obviously didn’t double check, sorry if there are any typos or mistakes!
PS. I really hope that’s enough smut for you skfhskfjksdf (*winking at my dear Ruby*)
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It wasn’t just morality or some lingering semblance of obligation that urged her to find him. There was traces of desperation puppeting her limbs to seek with vigor but mostly it was because she still cared. Kory would always care. Their significance to each other might have altered drastically with time but Dick Grayson would always hold a very special place in her heart. Lost and disoriented, it was he who acted as her guide on a planet unknown.Trauma licked at her blazing heels, a psychological turmoil which threatened to extinguish her flame. How could she know she’d find her light in the form of a former sidekick and his band of heroic misfits. Friendship, a concept she’d come to cling to with ardor. Naive as it proved to be on occasion.
And thus she’d search with only a litany of silent prayers to keep her focused. Hoping the Dick she found would not resemble the same man she’d failed to calm during Central’s catastrophe. She remembered how easily their connection bloomed in their youth and it flourished brilliantly for a long while. Battling costumed villains and protecting the innocent the backdrop to their wayward romance. But, she came to learn, they just weren’t meant to be. Every hazy fantasy she’d concocted about spending the rest of her days in his loving presence was nothing but false hope. It was a truly heartbreaking pill to swallow.
Her first friend, her first love, her first heartbreak.
As far as reunions went, this wasn’t what Kory imagined. Ideally, she’d hoped to step into a former version of herself, brighther. More buoyant -- even more so than her present demeanor. If only, just for a little while, they might be able to pretend they weren’t former lovers but two people who used to enjoy each other’s company. Who once were everything to each other. Best friends. But reality was rarely as pleasant, even her infallible optimism couldn’t counter that. She hovered hesitantly outside the building, how many locations had she tried in the last week expecting to discover him. Enough that the dissatisfactions were beginning to weight her down.
The door was pushed aside, her shoes landing gently on the ground as she called out. “Dick?” Kory thought she heard something, faint but promising. Stepping towards the sound she spotted him, relieved and elated she quickened her pace. That was, until she got a closer look at him and she was thrust, without warning, into the past. Though the last time Kory laid eyes on Dick Grayson he didn’t look much different than the man before her, for a brief moment, she felt significantly smaller and his face much younger. All it took was a few blinks to clear her strange perception and draw her back.
“Oh Dick,” she sighed, eager to lessen the distance between them but comprehending that patience was key in this moment. She offered a smile. “I’ve been looking all over for you...” she shuffled a few inches closer. “It has been some time. Don’t tell me you aren’t happy to see me, I would be very disappointed”
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Kill all Of Creepypasta (pt 15)
- What the hell are you doing? What...- aggressively hisses in pain.- What the fuck is in your head?- Heather almost broke her spine when she fell from that height, on a far from soft surface.- You're sick fuck....
- You said...- Jeff rises from his stomach to his knees, wiping the blood from the broken bridge of his nose and pulling out a broken tooth. - That's all is over for us....
- Everything is what?! And get off me right now! - Disgusted, the woman shoves the maniac off her chest.- landed right on my tits, you little bastard.
- I thought you wanted to get this over with, so I decided.... - At the same time, Woods wanted to help her to get up.
- The turkey was thinking too, and do you know what happened to it?!- She slaps man’s hands and stands up on her own.- Are you so fucking stupid that you don't understand the intonation?! That was sarcasm!!! The usual, bitch, sarcasm, I didn't ask you to push me and jump yourself, you fucking suicidal dumbfuck! - She slaps him across the face with the back of her glove.
- It doesn't matter if we die or not, I told you we were here...
- Shut your mouth! - Heather grabs his face and throat, forcibly pushing him to the edge of the bridge.- One more time.... I swear - if you do something like that again, you'll fly away from here, do you understand me?! I'll cut off the head, disembowel and feed those monsters for all the good things! This is your last chance, if you screw it up because of your stupidity - blame yourself! - A little more and she'd have thrown him out into the smoke."
At the last moment, she lets go of his death grip, leaving an extra pair of claw marks.
Woods stood with downcast eyes and rubbed his neck, which was squeezed by strong female hands. He stood like a motionless statue until he heard another scream:
- Why are you up, you fool? I still need you! - Afterward, Marshall lowers her tone.- For now, I need you alive... You're fucking lucky I'm kind today. Appreciate it, you idiot....
They walked forward, trying not to think about the incident again. They need a normal mindset for the upcoming journey to freedom.
The bridge was so long that it disappeared into the fog. As he walked along, Woods couldn't help but look down, noticing the familiar puddles. Didn't ignore the blank wall they came out of. There were a couple of doors peeking out of the wall, and there were also a row of floodlights. The farther they went, the more clearly they could see the opposite wall with its huge drains. From them, right now, waterfalls of sewage were flowing, which was why there was such foggy below. It would seem like a similar place, that's all. But Woods sees a spider's web in the distance to his right. A web of cobwebs running from the door to the chimney.
- I've been here.- Woods mumbled.
- What?- Marshall asked.- Jeff, I can't hear you over the noise, speak louder.
- Heather, I've been here before! We made a circle! More precisely, I made a circle! And most importantly - here I literally teleported to another place.
- Okay, okay, okay... Marshall looked away, ignoring the nonsense.- Okay, so you made a circle and what?
- I don't know, maybe... I figured it out because I was fighting spiders here, see the web?- points to his right side.- It was the only way I knew it was the same place. We need to leave a more reliable reference point, a placemark.
- Where are we going to leave it?- Don't tell me we have to go back to the entrance and draw shit on the wall that will wash away.
Her partner puts her fists on her waist in indignation.
- No, of course not. - Jeff looks around cautiously. Worried that the Monolaz is watching.- We need to tie something on the railing.- The belt, the handkerchief.... Is there something, you got for?
- Yes, there is. - The girl calmly takes the bandage out of the bag and gives it to the guy.- I just think it's a waste of time, but you know better. I mean... What would happen if ten more of these bandages will be tied here after us? What happens if this shit will be torn off?
- No, it won't. No. - the killer said flatly.- Do you see how tight I've tied it? Tighter than a sea knot! - Jeff is irritated by her doubts.
- You sound like you were in the army.- She chuckled and put a finger to her chin. -But the knot is really strong.
- You won't believe it, but I was trained to survive. - The guy completes the knot, pulling the ends of the ribbon sharply forward. Was he angry, or was it just an automatic movement?
- For an army man, you are...
- Weak?! - Woods squinted at her, turning his head ninety degrees.
- Incompetent.- she answers calmly, slightly lifting a chin.
That would be a better answer, at least it wouldn't make Jeffrey mad. Only slowly nods his head, answering so "yes, there is such a thing".
- Have you been to prison?- Marshall continued her casual conversation.
- No. I was not found sane, although I could have been thrown into the colony. But I did two years in a mental institution and ran away.- Jeff continued to wach the vast expanse around him.
This iron-concrete wall behind them was incredibly high and simply huge. Lined up pipes. God forbid, if under the influence of oxidation all these pipes will break off and fly down, and if the same fate awaits the bridge. How much money was spent on this building? How was it physically possible to recreate it under a century-old board? Under this ancient soil. How much of a genius you need to be to accurately calculate every millimeter of the design.... In Jeff, this landscape, which smelled of dust and damp, instilled a kind of primordial fear of the huge. Huge and inexplicable. Whatever engineering arguments might have led Woods straight to the face, he would have continued to regard this place as a monumental abode of something esoteric.
And he thought from the very beginning that everything that happens to him is just a kind of "Saw" movie. He wanted to think of it as a joke, a stupid quest. At least, according to the maniac, the MonoLaz can't be behind all this, she doesn't rule the game.
"She can speak into a microphone, but she can't control such a system, well, she can't. She's just another puppet in this theater of the absurd.”
The dark-haired man leaned his elbows on the railing. He needs to collect his thoughts. Again. For even in his sick head, so many reflections on what he has seen and heard will not fit.
- How?- Heather spoils the reflection again with her hoarse voice.- In a mental hospital, for a second, such things as the ability to fight and survive are not taught. Exactly as well as not really teach the school curriculum, but only treat for psychosis. Then how were you able to escape, much less acquire the skills?
Marshall was intrigued. A maniac who claims to have some semblance of army training, but was neither in the army nor in prison. But only in the hospital. And it is unlikely that he would have been able to train himself. Not on the run from the police all the time.
Jeffrey was silent for a moment. He was silent, silent, and then he changed the subject:
- You know what I'm afraid of?
-Well?- gives the girl consent to the publicity of thoughts.
- You may not believe in reincarnation within this complex any more than you believe in cloning, but... - he sighs heavily.- Do you believe that the MonoLaz can warp this place?- Or is there something behind it, something bigger, more powerful? Like God? If the president of the people is considered a God... Then why shouldn't this God be present here underground, disguise himself with an unstable child? Like a doll.... Something like a "Saw", but.... We're dealing with something serious, you know? I remember walking down a dark corridor, shuffling through the slimy meat like someone else's stomach, and then after a spider chase, I ran into a concrete corridor, you know? Woods was making that deranged gesture with his hands again, raising his palms to the top.- It just came out of nowhere while I was running away from the giant insects.
In response, Heather, oddly enough, lets out a tired, exasperated sigh:
- I'm sorry, but you’re....
- Heather, I'm not lying, and I'm not brain-damaged enough to...
- You were hallucinating, okay?- cuts off the possibility of finishing a thought by starting her own.- You hallucinated this meat corridor! And the spiders, too. And the world of some BEN is just a delusional dream.
- How do you explain to me that meat valley, the scale of this complex, the monsters after all?! How?!
- I'm more than sure that half of everything we've seen here is just a trip. This is a bedtrip caused by oxygen starvation. Yes, there is ventilation, so what? In any case, the air is rotten and saturated with solid and iron, which does not help the brain.
- But... - Pale faced guy holds up a finger.
- Jeff, that's enough! - The woman threw up her hands.- That's enough. Please.- she asks in a calm tone.- That's enough... We're just both going crazy here. And it shouldn't be like this, so we just need to get out of here, and as soon as possible. Marshall continued onward.
Woods slowed down a little, but of course he followed her, where would he go anyway?
“I wonder if throwing you off a bridge will turn out to be a hallucination? I know I'll wake up anyway if she does that to me. But I'm afraid that the more often you die, the lower you sink. And the lower, the worse. Disgusting, of course."
Jeff noticed what was on top. Not searchlights or another nebula or haze. Where does the fog come from under the ground at all? In any case, there was an iron pole running all the way over the bridge, from the very beginning to the very end. Or a rod. Or maybe a pipe. Hell knows, but Jeffrey wondered what the purpose of the pipe was. Then it dawned on the guy that if he managed to get a full bath in some century, then there must be a water supply system. So it's a water pipe. So its length is justified, because there must be a hundred safe rooms here.
- Okay, wait. - The wanderer put a hand on her partner's chest, not even looking back at him.
- What is it?- he asks in a slightly backward voice.
- Do you see the railing? Don't you notice anything? - Like a ranger, she narrowed her hawklike eyes.
- No, not really... Although... - Jeff squinted after her.- Yes, railings.... It's like they're cut off. As if someone were measuring every hundred centimeters, then cut off the segments, alternating so that the railing had gaps... - The killer looked back, and was surprised that both he and Marshall hadn't noticed the gaps behind them, a couple of meters back, not the entire bridge.
The brown-haired woman looked at the ribbed floor. It's hard not to notice the scuff, over which there is something brown, even black. Dried blood. The young man raises his head once more. He sees a thickening on the pipe. It also looked like there were several more vertical pipes coming from the horizontal pipe. Exactly in a row, parallel to the gaps in the railing.... Got it.
The vertical pipes slide down sharply, like a swing, and Heather pushes Jeff back, while she barely runs forward, being out of the risk zone.
Between the two of them were the bladed pendulums that Smiley had encountered before. How incredibly and precisely everything was honed. The ideal width of the gaps, so that the traps swing freely and without delay, and are also suspended at such a height that they almost do not touch the floor and do not leave unnecessary cuts on the surface.
But Woods didn't give a damn about such niceties, and he was bursting with anger at Heather. He felt betrayed again. She wasn't supposed to push him back, she was supposed to pull him forward.
- What have you done?- after a moment of stupor, he jumps up, being close to the pendulum blades. He seemed ready to run through them, just to beat the dirt out of Heather."What the fuck did you do?" He repeats his question angrily.
- What do you mean, I saved your skin, you idiot! -The sour-faced woman throws up her hands.
- You left me behind, you pushed me away! The fuck you did, how am I going to go with you now, tell me!- yells at her through the fog and the pendulums.
- What was I supposed to do, pull you along so we'd both be cut up? Jeff, I'm not going to leave you here, calm down!
- Then do something...
- Okay! Good, fine! Just shut up!- Heather peered at the pendulum attachment.
It looks like a soldered cable.... If she fires a shotgun at the base of one of the pendulums, it's possible…
The first shot goes off, but she misses and gets a shout:
- Can you aim better?!
Marshall ignores his anger and fires again, but the bladed poles don't fall off. Once more-no use.
- Jeff... I'm sorry, I'm sorry, Jeff, sorry...- a little confused and regretfully puts the gun back.- But it looks like you'll have to make your own way. I can't do anything here!
“You're unbearable, you're disgusting, when I get to you, I’ll throw you back, then watch you fuck up from a thousand cuts. And that's what you're gonna have to do, okay, motherfucker?!"- Woods stands ready.
He waited for the moment when the two pendulums slid aside to make way for him. But that was as far as Jeff could go, and then all the blades closed in a row as he arrived at a safe distance. How many more of these sticks are there? Two passed left.... Six.
“You're all kidding me, right?!"- forced to make his way forward, but by the malice of fate, he touches it. Not fatally, not to the point of a piece of meat and a bare humerus, but there was a lot of blood, and the psychopath was growling like an animal.
Damn, it hurts like always.
The guy wasn't angry at the pendulum wound, because the pendulum is just a machine. The one who caused this carnival of dodges and turntables, with the risk of losing limbs - he need to be angry with her, and the swearing will not be enough.
"That's right, Woods, that's right. You'll smash her face against the railing, or better yet, you'll have to put her teeth on it so you can crush them in one fell swoop. Then you will throw her into the abyss of sharp crescent moons in such a way that she does not die immediately, but slowly, from loss of blood. You do it and you'll be good, you can already do it."- the evil entity did not let up.
He got off with a little fright and adrenaline-he was able to get out of this mess on his own, and Marshall was even excited. She wanted to dress his wound, to tell him that he was a flint. In response, Jeff swung at her. Dodged it in time.
What was it you wanted to do, Jeff? Break her teeth and throw her against the pendulums, what's wrong? What is the problem?
"Coward. You're a coward."- this is how the inner demon comments on the situation.
Jeffrey doesn't look at anything, as if he doesn't care, either... Or he tries to realize and admit that this time he is wrong. Not right at all. She didn't betray him, it was just an accident…
“How many times will you forgive her for all these vile antics, eh, foolish don juan?! When will there be blood, when will there be drama, when will you tear off her tits in the end?! She shot you in the thigh and threatened you, stop licking her ass! Kill her.”
- Thank you, Marshall..... I'm sorry, I... - He doesn't look in her eyes.
Woman doesn't say anything, doesn't even nod, as she usually does. Her expression is neutral, and she just bandages his shoulder.
The only thing she did was give him a classic pat on the back. Then go to the next location, without dialogues.
And what should they talk about anyway?
All the corridors that were on the other side of the sewers, the companions passed steadily, without problems. Unless, of course, you pay attention to the severed fingers of Heather - the little finger and the middle one with the wedding ring. Lost them during another trap, Jeff doesn't even remember how he managed to stop the blood and properly bandage it, when there was a panic and a plentiful stream of blood on female arm. In any case, they were coming from a completely different place.
- What does this design remind you of? -The girl stops casually at the beginning of the bridge with the mesh barrier on top, staring at the reddish column.
- It looks like an unfinished high-rise building or a citadel of 30-40 floors, surrounded by iron scaffolding… And Balconies. And is it just me, or did we just go up a few floors?- The killer casually stares down, noticing a thicker fog, beyond which there is nothing.
- I'm still confused that everything here is some kind of… It's bluish, like it's twilight with fog, and the night sky is above us. But there's a cloud of fog above, too. I don't know, probably floodlights, but maybe… I very much hope that we are now under a huge well, which means that it is night outside, which means....- Heather doesn't look like herself under the emotional impulses and blindness of wanting to get out of here.- Fuck, we should have gone up! Jeff, come on!
Turns back around.
She had so counted on getting out directly in the citadel itself on the top floor that she instantly turned from an angry bitch into a schoolgirl full of enthusiasm and naivety, who decided to look for adventures in the wrong place.
Before Woods can insert his words, try to think about the situation first and discuss it, the passage back into the structure is blocked by a thick and blind panel, blocking everything with a booming pop and echo.
Heather stands still for a moment, her back to Jeff, her hand clenched into a fist.
"She's going to start yelling again." - he thought.
Wrong, because the woman just breathed in a lot of air very loudly. And just as loudly exhales. And all this without words.
Turns around and says with mock optimism:
- That’s Nothing.... It’s okay… We'll find another way out, as always. - Without hesitation, she strode across the bridge to Woods.- Pray that the bridge doesn't fall apart, because those holes in the grate are bothering me. It was as if something was trying to bite the barrier in half.
- You know what confuses me?- Woods paused the brown-haired woman for a moment to point to the left, in the most foggy and relatively lit part of the location.- These.... Things.
He was pointing at the trees. Of course, not on the forest or tropical, in other words-clearly not on what lived in the human environment. These are not even the meat trees that were both in the valley and in the MonoLaz redhouse.
The local "flora” consisted of rows of huge giant trees, although visually they resembled mushrooms.
Because of the way the white stems look. It's not a tree bark. Yes, there are trees with white bark in nature, but this is not the bark. Rather, something sticky and reticulated, clearly suggestive of a fungal mycelium or a web crumpled in biomass. The trunks are pierced with barely noticeable blood vessels, the “ribs” of the trunks were striking. It seemed ridiculous and absurd, but the ribs seemed to consist of rubies framed in a diamond or red eyes. This is just a prelude, it's not so scary. The stems of the” trees " had more aesthetics than the crown.
They weren't redwood branches, they weren't hogweed umbrellas either, although they looked very much like them. No, on the snow-white tentacle-like branches, the blood fruit burned crimson-scarlet, or so Woods took it, remembering again the not-so-good moments from the valley.
And all this "beauty” was entwined with a web, like lace, forming a kind of ”cocoon". Jeff felt sick when he noticed the spiders crawling through the plants, most likely performing the role of “builders " in this place.
- What is it, Heath?- Jeff asks with excitement and apprehension, feeling uncomfortable at the sight of such ”monsters " from the plant world.- You know?"
- I know.- the companion answers absently.- It's very bad.- in the eyes of hopelessness and neurosis, as if the Vietnamese flashback has come.
- Have you been here?
- Yes, I was.- puts her hand on the iron netting, leaning his forehead against it.- But I've been down there, and it's even worse. This is just a real hell, even piles of meat can't compare to this.
- Are you fucking serious?"- Woods is very shocked by this statement.
- I am.- woman snaps back.- Yes, I'm seriously saying that there is an inexplicable fuck-up going on down there. - Marshall takes a deep breath for the rest of the story of his passage.- It's not so foggy down there, it's just bare, rammed earth, dirt. And wide, just gigantic white roots. It would seem to be just large tree bases, and I'm just buggy again. But no… If you get too close to the bases of these giants, you can see....
She bit her lip, trying to overcome her inner revulsion and the initial shock of what she'd seen.
- I saw people growing into the base of the trees, like foam or clay. I don't know how to describe it properly. I really don't know... - She squinted, paused, thinking about the rest, and Jeff didn't interrupt her at all, listening very carefully, piecing together the image.- Just a pile of pale, skinny, and wheezing bodies embedded in the heart of the tree. In absolute close quarters, hundreds of them became part of the same organism, entwined and entangled with red threads. These poor people looked like anorexic albinos, like you, only you have black hair, and they are all gray... Also, for some unknown reason, they have the same numbers - 996. I have no idea what this means.
- Maybe, - Woods said it hesitantly, as if he was affected by what he was saying.- You imaginate that all? I mean, no, that's not what I meant.… I mean, that's where you might hallucinate. Is this possible?
- No, Jeff, no! And don't tease me! - Heather is clearly not thrilled that the situation has become a mirror image.- It was real, it was fucking real as it can be. So much so that I could literally hear the voices of these martyrs. The voices sounded like they were having dreams and talking in them, that's how I understood it. But what's worse , I accidentally touched this mass, and it almost swallowed me up. - she looks half-mad now. -Yeah, I was almost eaten by wood biomass, you know?
Jeff didn't answer the question, just said with a certain arrogance:
- I hope you realize at least now that nothing here can be justified by hallucinations. Everything is more than real. And my arguments about what is happening, as well as “pseudo-immortality " are very convincing.
- I'd rather believe we're in one solid simulation.- Tired, Heather covers her face with her hand.- Because nothing here can be explained by rational arguments, it's all too pointless.
- It turns out that there is no point in looking for a way out now, since you have decided for yourself that we are stupidly asleep! - The maniac waves his arms.-The only question is who brought us to this state and why, and who the MonoLaz really is.
Heather looked away. Woods, too... they both didn't like these words, but words sounded like the truth.
- But whatever it is,- he continued, peering into the heart of the mist above.- Even a degenerate would understand that Monolaz is just a little slut who clearly slept with some uber-rich sadistic misanthrope who got into power and let this bitch play with “her toys” for a reasonable amount of time. I've never met such a freak and scum in my life, even I'm not so fucked up that I can arrange a fucking "Hunger Games" underground. Or put people in a fucking matrix of pure laughter! Am I not right, Heather? - he turns to his companion, crushing her with his gaze.- Come on, tell me I'm wrong this time, and I'm talking nonsense again, as you usually say! Come on, I'm all yours!
- If I were you, I'd learn some manners, Jeff. - a girl's voice came from outside.- You can't treat a woman like that, Jeffrey Woods. And no one has the right to talk to me like that. Apologize before it's too late.
- Or what else?- It took the killer a moment to realize that the actuall Monolaz had responded to him, and he smiled slyly.- I take it you only stick your head out when someone shits your face on a case, am I right? Are you offended that I'm telling the truth about your rotten nature? Ah, Monoslut? - He grins at her, as if he's seen her through a haze.
- Jeff, what are you doing, she's us…
- Shut up, don't bother me!- The maniac's fake smile turned into an ugly grin.- You here instead of bending under this bitch and “licking her puss”... you'd better ask what and how is going here, what the fuck are we doing here, for what purpose all this is invented! But no, you naively believe that she will let us go, just fucking simple!- yells at the whole complex, not letting his overflowing emotion fade away.- Since it's more convenient for you to obey and indulge the whims of a child, then stand aside and stay out of it! I'll get to the truth myself!
- I wonder how? You're here. And I am in another place, where you, with all your desire and impulse, will not get to. Never. How many times have you threatened to kill me? But you didn't. - The demon girl folded her hands into a lock, still arriving at her core.
- Is that true?- Heather hadn't expected such a statement.- You really wanted to fuck Monolaz up when you couldn't get to her?
- Yes, so what?! - Maniac replied irritably.- I thought I told you to stay out of it, because I know how to talk to such cunts!
- You want to die, Jeff, you don't want her to smash us, leave no living place on us? - Marshall truly believed that Monolaz was capable of terrible things.- Why should I shut up when you're talking shit?
- Listen to your female, Jeffrey. She won't say anything bad. - laughed Monolaz
- I forgot to ask you, stupid hole! - Woods returns to the dialogue with Monolaz.- You'd better tell that lost sheep Heather the truth! Yes, the very truth that I know! Tell her that no one really dies here, and every last one here is real and rigged, tell her that! Come on, Laz, you said yourself that the numbers on the back are a death counter, so why the hell do I have six if I didn't die for the fifth time?! And who is this executioner with my face?! Answer me, fucking bitch! - He already reached a new level of rabies.
The next remark was threw to the guy into a daze.
- I don't know what you're talking about, Jeffrey Alan Woods,- the game's entertainer replies in a monotone.- I don't remember telling you that people here can't die. Believe me, they are capable of it. I'm surprised at how you survive here.- comments on all this with a chuckle.- No, really, I'm surprised you're so good with the traps and the landscape here.…
- What about the executioners?! What about that inscription when I was immured?! About the fact that the game can be started again?! And don't lie that you don't know, you commented on all my failures through notes! You laughed at me after I came back from Ben's world alive, but was killed by a dog with a smile, you saw it all! You yourself forcibly dragged me out of the safe room, bribed me with the fact that my friend, and brother, and Arkens are here... - he coughs with growing anger.- And you, a little slut, found the audacity to fuck that it was all a lie, that you have no idea what I'm saying here?! That is, first you instruct me, make me go through your stupid quest, and then you make me look like a loony in front of a companion - are you fucking crazy?! - Then he points a finger in the air.- Take back what you said and admit, admit to Heather Marshall that you tricked her, now!
Heather, meanwhile, watched the half-crazed maniac in silence, her yellow eyes bulging, as this was clearly not going to end well. She waited for a reply from the MonoLaz.
- You're hopeless, Jeff.- the girl says easily.- You… Although no, I don't feel sorry for you, no one will feel sorry for a mentally ill person. I am not to blame that you, despite your age, remained a child and live in fantasies so much that even in deadly situations you invent a virtual fictional world, reincarnation, God.... You find an excuse for all this in the fact that I allegedly told you this, like the messiah - what an absurdity and irresponsibility on your part.- Sarcastically shamed the maniac, waving her hand.-You made a fool of yourself, congratulations. However, I didn't expect any rationality from you. You are a bad player, and your death will be terrible…
- You bastard, how dare you?!- oh, if only Jeffrey could fly to get to the cold-blooded beast's apartment like a bullet.
A series of hysterical insults followed, repeated in cycles. Heather had to hold him by the waist again, pulling him back, dissuading him from trying to get to the truth, which was not there. In her eyes, Jeff had lost the look of a sane person.
The shouts were loud enough to attract the attention of intruders, an unnecessary nuisance.
Something with a crash and vibration all over the barrier post jumped a meter away from the players.
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Being Regulus Black’s Younger Sister (Version 1 - Slytherin) • Headcanon
Warnings: body insecurity and eating mention, forced eating restrictions, canon child abuse and neglect by Walburga Black, Barty Crouch Jr makes an appearance
Request: Hey maybe you could do a regulus x younger sister headcanons or fix really whatever you want to do 💖 — @nicole198205
A.N: I honestly loved writing Black sister reader...this was so fun and if you liked it too and want like a real blurb or something based on any of these bullet points, you should request it. Hope you all enjoy and I love you all ❤️
Being the only girl in 12 Grimmauld Place means that you got treated differently than your brothers
Not nicer, by any means
Different in a way that meant your mother was constantly fussing over your appearance and making sure you acted “ladylike”
When you were little it was nice
You got to spend alone time with your mother in your room, she would brush your hair and pick out frilly and elegant dresses
Sure, sometimes she would purposefully tug a little too hard on your hair causing you to yelp, but it wasn’t a big deal
Eventually, though, your mother got rougher, these mother-daughter times turning into torturous hours where she’d make snippy comments about your weight and how you should appear to certain men
You weren’t even ten years old and she was already arranging your marriage to a man that, according to the Black Family Tapestry in the Drawing Room, was a distant relative
Sure she bought you dresses, and heels, and jewels, but they weren’t for you to enjoy and it wasn’t out of love or kindness
She needed you perfect for marriage
You always ran to Regulus’ room for comfort and he was always happy to listen to you vent
“If Bella, and Cissy, and Andy can deal with it, (Y/n), so can you. You’re just as strong as they are.”
You were always closer to Regulus, maybe because he was closer to you in age or because he wasn’t as rough or brash as Sirius
While Sirius taught you curse words, Regulus taught you prose and poetry
When Sirius went off to Hogwarts, the two of you got even closer
Your mother got worse when she found out that her eldest son was sorted into Gryffindor
She had a fit that day, one that consisted of her throwing pots and pans at the walls, shattering ancient artifacts, and tearing at her own hair
You and Regulus, frightened little children, hid in his closet waiting for your father to come home to calm her down
The two of you clutched each other tight, not daring to even make a noise, scared that you might be the next thing she breaks
You and Regulus weren’t allowed to say your brother’s name and all letters were snatched away and thrown into the fireplace
He was even banned from coming home for Christmas break
The two of you were dragged to even more family gatherings and balls
You particularly were forced to split your time between hanging out and learning from the other girls and presenting yourself to the boys
At night, you would sneak into your brother’s room, seeking comfort
You would talk about Sirius and how you can’t wait to get to Hogwarts
“Hogwarts’ll be different, (Y/n). No more screaming and family obligations...” He would smile, listening to a rogue sneakoscope whir in a drawer
“You’re forgetting something, Reg.” You’d sigh. “I’ll have to be on my own for a whole year before I can join you guys.”
“Well maybe mother will let you read my letters, and I can sneak in some of what Sirius wants to tell you.”
Sirius was different when he came back home for the summer
He wasn’t afraid to push your mother’s buttons a bit harder and he certainly wasn’t afraid to run his mouth a bit more
Sirius talked like the outside world like it was the best thing ever
And while you were curious about Hogwarts and the many different sorts of people that attended, your mother made it pretty clear pretty quick that even associating yourself with your older brother was worthy of some sort of punishment
And as much as you loved Sirius, you loved playing it safe even more
You didn’t outright ignore him, you did talk to him about Bella’s new boyfriend and the new quill your father bought you
But more often than not, you were with Regulus, enjoying the time you had left together
The night before Regulus had to leave for Hogwarts, you came crying into his room
“Don’t cry, sœur, it’ll be quite alright.” He would whisper in your ear, rocking you back and forth in his arm (sœur is sister in French)
But your etiquette lessons got harder and your mother got stricter, trying to make you a Perfect Slytherin Princess
Your mother was overjoyed when she got a letter saying how Regulus was sorted into Slytherin
She gave you a glass of wine (“Because that’s what ladies drink, (Y/n)!”) and told you that Regulus was a perfect role model
Regulus sent letters every week, detailing his classes and the people in his year
He made fast friends with a Bartimus Crouch Jr
He told you how Sirius would barely talk to him in the corridors ever since the sorting
Regulus would say a quick hello and Sirius would always reply, but the older brother never went out of his way to leave his friend group for a chat
Regulus would write paragraphs about why this could be before settling on the fact that it’s because of the house difference
Sirius only sent a few letters home and each time they were burnt to ash in front of you
So Regulus was your only outlet
You would tell him about how mother was starting to restrict your meals and starting to squeeze you into dresses far too small
He would offer you comforting words and distractions by talking about school, as it was far too difficult to actually help your situation through a letter
Regulus didn’t come home for Christmas break, claiming that exams were stressing him out, especially Herbology, so he’d rather continue his studies in a school environment
So that’s how the rest of your year goes
Regulus is...different when he gets back for the summer
It’s a very slight change, you’re pretty sure you’re the only one who notices
But it’s there
A bit more reserved, a bit more secretive
Childish wonder disappearing
He no longer publicly acts afraid of your mother
“It’s Sirius’ fault he’s got grounded, (Y/n). He broke a rule, now he’s facing the consequences.”
“But Reg, he didn’t do anything wrong—“
“(Y/n)! Are you trying to encourage the downfall of the Noble House of Black?!”
And that was it
But finally you were off to Hogwarts
Regulus lets you sit with him and Barty, who wears expensive shoes like you and Reg and had a slight tic with sticking his tongue out
But he was nice nonetheless less
Turns out, they were the outcasts of the outcasts
You were welcome to join when you are sorted into Slytherin
They were sure that you were going to be sorted there already
And you were dreading it
What if you weren’t a Slytherin and ended up like Sirius?
You could barely handle your family now, there’s no way you’d be able to take the extra shit Sirius gets
The hat gives you a choice
The worst choice possible
Gryffindor or Slytherin
You end up with a hatstall of 8 minutes, constantly looking between your brothers
And you beg to be placed in Slytherin
And so you join your brother and Barty at the table of the snakes
Sirius doesn’t look at you across the Great Hall
“Hey, Reg? Did the hat give you a choice too?”
“A choice between what?”
“Slytherin and Gryffindor.”
“Don’t tell anyone you got a choice. Listen, people in this house are brutal to people like you who get choices. Don’t mention it.”
“You didn’t answer my question—“
And he never does
You spend all of your time with Regulus and Barty, the other kids in your year are kinda major assholes
Regulus helps you with your homework, always making time for you
Meet ups in the library
Chess in the common room
Barty was usually with you as well
And that’s how it goes over the next few years
Even when Regulus is busy with his own classes and him being a seeker, he’ll make time for you
You always attend his matches, cheering him on
He’s a great seeker
In your fifth year, you notice how Reg and Barty change drastically
Pulling away from you, secret meetings, dark depictions and phrases hidden in notebooks
You get worried
For the first time ever you push your way through the Marauders to talk to your brother
“Oh, the Slytherin Princess arrives! Want us to bow?” He snarks, his friends laughing
“Piss off, Sirius! It’s about Reg.”
“What about him? Did he finally stop kissing Walburga’s arse?”
“It isn’t a laughing matter!” You’re practically in tears
And he listens to you as you explain all of your concerns and he ends up agreeing that that is worrisome
“What the hell did you tell Sirius?” Regulus shouts at you in the empty common room one night
“I’m worried, Reg! You’re going all dark, like what mother wants! This isn’t you!”
“This is me, believe it or not, (Y/n)! I’m not some puppet!” He shouts at you.
“Just wait, (Y/n), you’re next. Next year, it’ll be you. You can’t escape it.”
“Sirius got out of it.” You mumble
Regulus storms out and that’s the last real conversation you have with him and Barty for a long time
You get a letter from him when you graduate, something you have to hide away from your brother and the rest of the Order
Forgive me, sœur,
All Character Taglist: @aspiringsloth20 @amourtentiaa @cherie-draco
Regulus Taglist: @lunalovecroft
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Chapter 27 of RH: AHC
Warnings: Somebody is possessed by a demon and there is a big fucking fight. I don’t know what else to tag this as. I don’t think its too graphic but there we go
This chapter took me all day, with a little bit of help from a friend who gave me advice for the fight scene so there we go.
@purgatorydotexe @abalonetea @poore-choice-of-words @ettawritesnstudies @frogus @writing-is-a-martial-art
Wattpad Link: https://www.wattpad.com/1049041104-raising-hell-a-hunter%27s-call-chapter-27/page/4
I’ve never really been horrified with much that has ever been said to me, except for in this moment.
It all happens so fast. I can hear my heartbeat in my ears like a call to war - drums that never seem to end.
Leah throws Sebastian’s trenchcoat over him as I pull him backwards in horror.
We can all smell the sulphur, we can see it as Sebastian spots some in a corner of the room by the window. Its clear ‘Hannah’ tried to hide it.
I don’t even pay any attention to the glass around us that Leah dropped.
Leah calls out to our mother and we watch as Hannah’s eyes go black and blood drips from her nose.
She laughs again and we back away slowly.
Why did my mother even agree to this? Why would she even think working with a Demon was the best option? She would never do this. The Hannah I know would never do this.
So what could they have offered her in order to do this?
Does she ever actually know Sebastian at all or has everything that has been said, been the Demon talking all along?
“Why are you doing this? What do you need Hannah for?” I ask.
“If you wanted us so badly, why did you do what you’ve done so far? You could have just had somebody try to storm our base?” Leah adds and I have to admit it is a good question.
“Admittedly that is a good question, but there are certain reasons as to why we couldn’t storm your base. One of them being is that it is protected so we can’t get in.” ‘Hannah’ laughs again.
I look confused for a few seconds before I remember that Sebastian said there are certain sigils and spells that are around the building that keep Demons from entering the building and he made sure to remove the ones that keep Angels out because otherwise Zachary would have never been able to enter.
“The other reason.” Hannah continues, “Is that we’ve had other matters to attend to and we’ve been deciding on how to approach you and we knew you’d fall for something eventually. You already do so much.”
I try to push past Sebastian so I can protect him but there is no room to get around him and this room is so cramped anyway, despite the fact it is meant to be a luxury room.
As if the Demon can read minds, they watch me closely and answer as to why Hannah is like this.
“Hannah offered herself willingly to the cause. She thought she may have been the Vessel for the chosen one. She is not the one, but has been a great help all the same.” Hannah's voice is deep and growling, as if trying to mimic what possessed people in Hollywood movies sound like.
Did our mother take the offer because they knew she wanted revenge on the Vampire that killed our father and they promised her something and they knew they would never help her?
Then again, she’d never accept help so why would she accept it from creatures she’s been hunting for forty years?
Sebastian starts reciting an exorcism spell and soon finds that the spell doesn’t work.
He looks horrified.
“You really underestimate how strong Hannah is. To hold such power and have been like this for months…” Hannah laughs
I should stop called the Demon possessing my mother by her name. The lights go out and for a moment I swear I see a pair of Demon wings through the darkness.
“What is your name?” I ask. “Your true name.”
“Halphas.” They reply.
Sebastian tells me what he knows about the name Halphas – a Demon who is essentially a military man. Sends men and women to war and commands twenty-six legions of spirits.
The lights come back on and literally nothing else has changed. Hannah is staggering slightly and I want to reach out for her, but apart of me knows this isn’t her.
I’m so conflicted. I want to be angry. I want to ask questions but I know we won’t get many answers.
“Why would Hannah ever let you take over her body? Why would Mom do that?” I ask incredulously.
“Mother would never ask for help. Not unless you offered her something in return.” Leah adds on.
I can see Halphas hesitate, as if he wants to share information but decides against it and Leah calls out to our mother, asking her to keep fighting.
As if she’s listening.
“Are you the Demon behind all the attacks we’ve seen? That I’ve been investigating? That we have been investigating.” Sebastian corrects himself at the end.
“No, but you are pretty close. But you’ve been a thorn in our side for a while now and I need to do what I brought you here to do. I need to put you to the test.”
A test? What kind of test?
“I knew you’d fall for the trap of tracking Hannah. It was really that simple. If she knew where you were and we couldn’t get in, we would have to draw you out another way.” He continues speaking.
Hasn’t everything we’ve ever done been one big giant test of how we can cope with our line of work whilst searching for the truth?
Halphas, using my mother as a puppet, raises their arm and I can see dark magic forming from their hand.
We are blasted backwards through the wall of the hotel room, through another hotel room and into the street below.
Sebastian quickly puts his trenchcoat on properly before searching for anything we can use as a weapon.
There is nothing we can use as a weapon, not unless one of us can throw a car at people.
Leah starts running, moving to the left of me and Sebastian and I are transfixed to the spot.
“Use your powers and submit to us. Become the monster you know you are.” Halphas’ voice is louder now, like they are speaking through a megaphone.
I look up to see that Hannah is clearly fighting the possession and at the same time, Halphas is trying to call out to us through her and I want to help, but I can’t get back in, not with what is going around us.
“Never!” Sebastian yells and tells us to move.
There are alarms going off in houses and in cars and I look around us. We need to get out of here, there is not much room to move. I am torn between staying to protect Sebastian, and running out of the street.
Sebastian drags me to my feet and asks me if I’m alright.
I start praying to Zachary.
I don’t really believe in any God but I believe in Zachary because he’s almost never let us down and we need him now more than ever, because he said he’d help us. Its weird what you will do to help your friends once you’ve opened your eyes to what can be going on in the world.
Especially when you know that Gods exist and yet they don’t give a shit about the world that they are meant to look after.
Leah asks Sebastian what we should do because we don’t have any weapons.
This is the test. Somebody wants to test us to see how Sebastian will react and if he’ll turn on us to embrace his powers and be what they want him to be.
I don’t understand the full extent of what they needed my mother for but I guess we can figure it out later.
But all I know is this, after thinking it over after discussing it with the others on the plane ride to London: Everything has been connected so far.
We know now they’re testing Sebastian for something like they need him.
We still don’t know who this Vessel is that they need, but the Demons are working together with someone.
Raphael is still missing and I’m pretty sure he is connected somehow because we cannot find him and he does not want to be found.
Demons across the world are all committing mass exterminations in order to find a Vessel. If the person that is being possessed isn’t worthy, they die.
Because of this, other people not connected to the Demons are acting out because they’re scared and we’re eliminating them all.
So the better question is – who are the real monsters plaguing this world. Them or us?
They need that Vessel. They need somebody strong enough for something and I don’t think it stops at an apocalypse. I think there is something more.
But now is not the time for thinking things over. We need to get out of here and evade the police.
If it were me being tested, I’d have used my powers long ago. I’ve often thought about what I would do if I had powers but I know I’d be a hypocrite because when Sebastian found Leah and I, we almost attacked him because he crept up on us.
I was more of a ‘shoot first, ask questions later’ girl and only Leah stopped me from hurting Sebastian.
I’ve been so consumed by hate and the need to follow in my mother’s footsteps that I was blind to the truth that I didn’t need to do all what we’ve done.
Sebastian didn’t tell us he was a Shapeshifter because he was worried about how he’d be judged and how we’d react because he knew what we were like.
He’s seen us change over the weeks, the months that we’ve known him as a friend and not by what others have heard about him and not being judged by reputation.
Its complicated. The feeling of what I’d do instead is complicated.
I hear the flap of wings behind me and I turn to see Zachary, armed and ready to fight.
I’ve never seen Zachary look so angry. Time stops around us. People who were running are now frozen mid run and cars are stuck in traffic and so on.
I look around us and the only people not frozen are Leah and I, Zachary, Sebastian and Halphas.
“You.” Halphas hisses.
Zachary steps out in front of Sebastian protectively.
Sebastian reaches out to touch Zachary’s shoulder but decides against it. I can see how tense Sebastian is.
Sebastian’s hands go to his pocket.
“Halphas, how dare you hide behind an innocent woman’s soul. Face me as what you truly are. Nothing more than a military man trying to stoke the flames of war.” Zachary’s voice booms over us.
“It’s over, Zachary. I have the higher ground.” Halphas laughs.
He hesitates for a moment and we watch as Hannah drops to the floor, alive but unconscious as the Demon leaves her body.
Leah makes an audible noise of concern but we both know our mother will be fine.
The Demon’s true form is nothing like I’d ever expected. He’s over six foot tall and has long black hair going way past his shoulders. His clothes are strange and clearly not from this world; like he thinks he is a God and he’s tried to crown himself as one.
His eyes are black with burning red pupils.
Huge black wings unfurl from his back lifting him off the ground. Leaping from the hole in the hotel several stories above us, he glides to where we are standing in the middle of the street, taking up pretty much most of the street and summoning a makeshift dagger out of pure dark energy.
We’re going to witness a fight and I feel helpless because I know if I try to fight that I will just end up another casualty.
“Halphas. I know you. You were a good man, once. What would Lucifer say?” Zachary asks, unfurling his own wings to act as a barricade and Sebastian gasps.
“Am I going to be schooled on loyalty by the Angel who has begun to fall from grace? You don’t get to stand here and protect these pathetic weaklings whilst you claim to fight for what is right. You have no idea of how long you’ve let this all fly under the radar. You know nothing, Zachary.”
“Lucifer wouldn’t have wanted you to do this. You answer to Lucifer, I know you do. So why are you doing this? Stand down and stop what you’re doing.”
I step over to Sebastian and ask him what we should do and we both agree that we can’t leave Zachary here to fight Halphas alone. We should watch and see what happens.
“I do not answer to Lucifer. And I certainly do not answer to you.” Halphas sneers. “You deserve to suffer like we have suffered. For the greater good of this world and for my master, I will end you.”
Zachary grips his blade tighter. Its not a sword and it is slightly bigger than a knife but he can parry with it.
“You can certainly try. But I need to know why you’re doing this.” Zachary answers “What do you need to test Sebastian for?”
“You wouldn’t understand.” Halphas replies.
“Tell me. Make me understand. Is that really so complicated?”
I don’t know what to say and make a few noises that make me sound like a cat choking on a hairball before falling silent.
“Halphas, who are you working for?” Sebastian asks. “What are you planning and what do you need to do?”
“I’m sure you’ll find out soon enough. You can use your brain, I’m sure you’re smart enough.”
Halphas moves and as he does so, Leah grabs me.
The street is so narrow there isn’t much room to fight and so we are transported to a place where we can fight – it looks like a park.
“This is Hyde Park.” Sebastian tells us, looking around.
Zachary reveals that he’s the one that moved us, because we’ll have more time and more space to move to get away. Hannah isn’t here.
“Zachariah. You know where your loyalties are supposed to lie. But you know that they don’t care. You know that the Gods, our Heavenly Fathers and Mothers do not care of what happens to this world. So why not embrace the fact that it will fall to darkness? You won’t be able to stop it.”
Zachary shakes his head.
“You’re wrong.” Zach’s voice wavers as its clear Halphas has struck a nerve.
Zachariah. So that is Zachary’s actual name. Interesting.
I gotta be honest, I prefer Zachary. Zachariah sounds way too fancy and noble.
Halphas makes the first move in the fight that is Angel vs Demon.
Halphas swings at Zachary like he’s a bull and Halphas is the matador. Zachary swiftly moves to avoid the dagger and this goes on repeatedly for a few turns before Zachary somehow annoys Halphas so much that he screams demonically.
Zachary throws a punch and tries to overpower Halphas and slashes away. Zachary’s weapon embeds itself in Halphas’ side and Zachary drags it downwards and out; blood flying everywhere like black slime.
Halphas and Zachary start exchanging blows so fast that I can’t even keep up with them and watch as they roll across the park grass with no sign of the fight slowing down.
Leah and I decide to watch from a safe distance and Sebastian watching, waiting for a moment to join in and protect Zachary though we all know he’ll never get the chance.
We have the perfect opportunity to get away but Sebastian is standing still like he cannot be moved.
Halphas throws Zachary backwards into a tree and the force actually splits the tree and sends wood splinters in every direction. This is no ordinary fight – this is a fight on a godly level.
Zachary rises into the air and unfurls his wings and we know what is coming next. We cover our eyes as the blinding light clouds our vision.
We hear Halphas screaming but when the light fades, he is somehow still standing. Zachary in the air like he’s coming down from Heaven like he’s some divine intervention.
Halphas changes tactics pretty quickly and it soon becomes apparent he now intends to start fleeing. Sebastian tries to block his path as Halphas starts running; clearly hurt because he’s struggling to teleport.
Halphas’ dagger disappears as he turns to using his magic instead. Halphas turns and sends a fireball my way and Leah screams.
Zachary jumps in front of me in a split second and blasts the fireball in the opposite direction using the force of his wings.
Halphas screams as he is hit.
He falls to his knees.
“Stand down, Halphas. You know this fight could last forever as we are evenly matched.” Zachary orders.
Halphas genuinely looks panicked, but then changes completely as if somebody is contacting him through other means because he as no phone visibly or anything.
“As much fun as this is, I think I have distracted you long enough. We will finish this another time, another place.” Halphas says.
He vanishes then and time begins to flow normally and Zachary’s wings curl in on themselves.
Zachary looks around, at all the people and the damage and he knows there will be questions.
Zachary concentrates. I’m not sure if anybody can see him because he’s an Angel but everyone else can see us and Hannah is still back at the Ritz.
“What about Mom?” Leah calls out to Zachary.
There is no way we can go back to the Ritz now, because things have clearly hit the fan.
“Zachary, can you transport us back to Headquarters?” Sebastian asks.
Leah protests because she wants to check on our mother but I tell her we’ll get into trouble. Zachary goes to try and locate her and find she has gone missing and Halphas may be to blame.
“To Headquarters?” Zachary asks.
We all nod.
Zachary concentrates; clearly having used a lot of power in the fight. We scare the shit out of Caroline and Glenn as we all suddenly materialise in the living room of Headquarters.
“What the fuck happened?” Glenn sounds so bewildered
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Really, you’ve all been so lovely about these first two drabbles the other day. So first of all, THANK YOU SO MUCH to everyone who read them and reblogged and liked and ahhh (can’t believe anybody is reading these drabbles at all, that’s just mad!)
And since it seems I’m not the only one unabashedly enjoying artist!Jon, here’s another one. Yes, another drabble (don’t ask).
Hope you lot enjoy this one and very special thanks to @mysticmyllee for whipping it into shape <3
PS: my inbox is open for prompts if there’s anything in particular you’d like to see me try my hand at. (again, I guarantee for nothing. Terms and Conditions apply.)
“They’re driving me mad.”
“How’s it going up there?”
“They’re driving me mad.”
Jon let his head hang, pinching the bridge of his nose. He was probably only sitting upright still because his elbows were on his knees, a bit like a puppet whose strings were cut except those on the shoulders. Dany could only see a bit of his tied back curls in the corner of her screen.
He quickly regained his posture, visibly forcing himself back to reality. He tried to smile, but it only made Dany’s heart ache a little more.
“Is Arya there, too?” she wondered, her eyebrows knitting. The prospect that he’d have at least one person on his side when he went up to Winterfell for a few days was the only reason he agreed to go at all.
Jon huffed a humourless laugh. “She is, but she brought her boyfriend. Kat is over the moon, planning the next wedding already. Then Sansa got mad for some reason.” He paused, biting his lip, avoiding to look directly at his phone as he mumbled, “Keeps them from talking about me too much, at least.”
“What about Robb and, what was her name again? Margaery? Have you met her yet?”
Jon chuckled at that, easing some of Dany’s worse worries. “Yeah, she’s really nice, actually. We had a chat when Robb introduced her to everybody one by one. You know, the usual small talk, where I live, what I do. I don’t think I got out two sentences before Lady Stark was kind enough to put it all into perspective for her.” He shrugged.
How he dropped out of grad school, let Robb handle the family business on his own, put all this strain on the firstborn, move as far south as he could.
His features were only illuminated by the glow of the phone he cradled in his hands. Dany could barely make out anything behind him. But she saw him step through sliding doors before, so she assumed he was on a balcony of sorts, definitely outside. At night. In Winterfell. Her fingers itched to put a blanket or a jacket or something around him. Stubborn idiot.
But she was 1,600 miles further south, her only connection to him through a godsdamned screen. She should’ve been more adamant, not let his stubborn arse go there alone. She shouldn’t have expected the rest of his family to be actually decent people - Arya being the exception to the rule. But she let him make the decision. Stupid, stupid, stupid!
Dany stroked a hand through Ghost’s thick fur. His head lay on her thigh, close enough that he could hear Jon’s voice, too, she hoped.
“I’m sorry, Jon,” she said softly.
“It’s okay,” he answered automatically. But Dany knew it wasn’t.
She angled the phone down a little and awkwardly bent sideways to capture both Ghost and herself for him. “We miss you terribly. And it hasn’t even been twenty-four hours yet.”
Finally, Jon smiled a real smile. “I hope he’s being good?”
“The best! Aren’t you, boy?” At the praise, Ghost’s tail started thumping against the bed. Dany scratched behind his ear and the giant dog squeezed his eyes shut happily. “See? Happy as a clam. Don’t you worry about us.” Jon scratched the back of his neck. A nervous tick; she knew she caught him. “I know that look on your face, you can’t fool me.”
At that, her broody Northerner grinned, trying to hide it though by rubbing his beard. He peered at her sheepishly through thick, dark lashes.
“I love you, Dany.”
Now it was her turn to blush. “I love you, too. Now get inside before you freeze to death, would you?”
“You don’t even know if it’s cold out here.” He chuckled. But he already got up from wherever he had sat, city lights appearing behind him when he turned around to do as he was told.
“You’re in fucking Winterfell, love. I can literally see your breath.”
Once he was inside, Dany got a glimpse of the room he was staying in. It was a guest room, judging by the generic decor. She really had thought too highly of the Starks.
“There, now I can even see your lovely face,” she teased. It earned her a glare, which she retaliated with a devilish grin.
“Are you going to go to sleep soon?” Jon asked tentatively after a short pause, perched on the edge of the bed.
She knew why he asked. He wouldn’t sleep all night. He didn’t want to be a burden either, keep her awake for his sake. She nodded, an idea forming in her mind.
“You can always call, I’ll keep my phone close.”
“You don’t have to,” he started, then bit his lip when she said nothing. They already had this conversation barely twenty-four hours ago. “Thank you.”
“You promised to bring me back a drawing of the Godswood, remember?”
Jon seemed to relax a little, his eyes focusing on something to his left. Probably his sketch pad. “I remember, yes. Already have an idea for it.”
“Can’t wait to see it.” She blew him an exaggerated kiss, just for good measure. And because it made him laugh.
“I’ll let you sleep. Talk to you tomorrow.”
“You can call anytime, okay?”
Jon nodded, running a hand through his hair. “Love you.”
“Love you, too, Jon.”
She ended the call, her heart feeling like a thousand little needles were stuck into it.
But instead of lying alone in the cold bed, she gently eased Ghost off her, got out of bed and pulled a suitcase out of the very back of the wardrobe.
Ghost sat up suddenly, perfectly alert, red eyes watching her actions with something Dany could only interpret as deep betrayal.
“I’m sorry, boy, but you’ll have to spend a few days with Grey and Missandei.”
If there was one thing he was actually really good at, it was slipping out of social situations of any given kind. Must be the life-long practice. He had just so made it through yet another dinner with the whole family. Although this time, Kat seemed to have more pressing matters to discuss with Margaery and Robb than list all the reasons why Jon was such a disgrace.
Instead, he had the chance to catch up with Arya and Rickon for a little while. He couldn’t quite wrap his head around how Rickon was actually taller than Arya now. He seemed to be doing all right. It helped a little with Jon’s guilt of never checking in with the younger boys.
Jon was holed up in his assigned guest room now, an almost empty bottle of ale on the bedside table as he sketched away at the impression of the Godswood for Dany, working out a few details he didn’t need to see the original to remember.
It did the trick to take his mind off of what was going on downstairs, or the dreaded engagement party set to happen tomorrow, with basically all of Winterfell in attendance.
A sudden sharp noise pulled him out of his peaceful state. He held his breath, wide eyes scanning the room. Then another one. This time he located the clanking to the window. He remained frozen, until it came again: one sharp knock, against the window, coming in irregular intervals.
The sun had set a while ago even though it was early in the evening, so he couldn’t see what was knocking against the pane. He felt rigid with irrational fear as he got off the bed and walked to the window. With the rush of unprecedented courage, he opened it to check for the source of the noise. Then something whooshed right past his head and clattered to the floor behind him.
“Dany!?” He stared down to the ground in utter disbelief. By the old gods and the new, if he was dreaming this…
But there she stood, dropping a handful of pebbles, neck craned back so she could look right at him. She was all dark blues and moonbeam silver in the dark of the night.
“Hi,” she said, grinning like the devil.
He still couldn’t quite fathom it. “What are you-- Hold on. Hold on, don’t move. I’m coming down. Don’t move!”
He turned on his heel, stepping into his boots, but not bothering to tie them. Slipping a jumper over his head, he practically ran downstairs and out through the kitchens. It was the fastest way to the yard under his window.
Then she was suddenly in his arms, holding on so tight. He lifted her off her feet and spun them, once, twice. The smell of her perfume all around him, the sound of her laughter in his ear, her heat cutting through the cold.
He was dizzy when he set her down, kissing her with all he had in him. Two days apart. He felt like a green boy in love for the first time. Maybe he was just that.
“What in seven hells are you doing here?” he demanded breathlessly, forehead pressed to hers. As if she’d vanish into thin air if he let too much distance get between them again.
“I got on the first available flight.”
“Are you crazy? They cost a fortune.” He didn’t even try to sound accusing, too happy to have her in his arms.
“I don’t care. When I saw that look in your eyes last night,” Dany trailed off, looking into those exact eyes now, glittering with something he couldn’t quite identify. “I shouldn’t have--”
He cut her off with another kiss. He wouldn’t let her take any blame.
“Not here. Come on.”
He slipped one hand into hers, picking up her suitcase with the other, leading her in the approximate direction of the Godswood, past the kitchens where he left her suitcase for safekeeping.
He could find the way in his sleep, the darkness making no difference to him.
“How did you know which window was mine?” He asked curiously, glancing over at Dany who trod the packed dirt trails more carefully.
“I may or may not have someone on the inside who explained it to me in great detail.” She smirked. He just shook his head.
Jon bit back a smile.
“You didn’t bring Ghost, too, did you?”
“No, he’s with Missandei and Grey. Taking him on the flight seemed cruel.”
Jon squeezed her hand. He didn’t notice her coat until now, the one she wears in the deepest winter in King’s Landing. It was nearly summer now, but the nights were still cold. But Dany was always cold when he was already sweating. His heart skipped a beat at the fact she truly went all the way up north, for him.
“Where are you taking me?”
Jon felt almost giddy at once. “I know I promised to draw the Godswood for you. But I might as well just show it to you now.” He nodded to the copse just ahead of them, behind the crumbling remains of some old castle walls.
Even when illuminated only by the nearly full moon overhead, you could tell how the colour of the trees’ leaves differed from deep green to a blood red. And once they were close enough Dany recognised the white bark of those with the red leaves, the eerie scars on the thick trunk.
“You draw these all the time,” she noted, looking about them in awe as they came to stand under the dense canopy. Somehow a little bit of the moon’s light still filtered through.
Jon’s gaze was fixed on her, wishing he could capture this exact moment, that sparkle in her eyes.
“I used to come here a lot,” he said quietly. It felt like every word he spoke disturbed some sort of peace that laid over this place.
He led her around a small pond before they sat on a bench beneath an ancient heart tree. Before he could say anything else, her arms wrapped around him again. He immediately responded in kind, pulling her close, her legs across his, arm slung tightly around her shoulders while hers circled his narrow waist. Her hands slipped under the hem of his jumper to touch his bare skin.
“I told you you didn’t need to come,” he mumbled into her hair, closing his eyes as he inhaled her.
“And I decided not to listen to you.”
Jon exhaled slowly, ignoring the stinging in his eyes.
The voice in his head screamed that this was bad, that this was too far, that he needed to push her away before worse happened, before he revealed too much, before she could hurt him, too.
Because that’s all people ever did.
He tightened his hold on her.
“Whatever they say, it’s not true, Jon,” she whispered, placing a palm right over his heart. “Tomorrow, I’ll come with you to that party.”
Jon shook his head, adamant. “No, Dany, it’ll be awful. It’s bad enough they say all this shit about me, I’m not letting them run their mouths about you, too.”
She lifted her head, her hand going to his cheek to angle his face down and look at her. “Do you think I care what they say?”
Jon said nothing, his head tilting into her touch. She caught a tear with her thumb.
“I’ll be right by your side and if anybody dares to say one bad thing about you, I am walking out of there with you, for good. Do you hear me?”
The vice around his heart tightened, breathing becoming impossible.
“How do I deserve you?”
Then he kissed her again, the feel of her lips moving against his making her real and their surroundings fade away. It didn’t matter where he was. All that mattered was that she was with him.
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Sherlock Holmes - Kiss Me, Mr Detective
A/N - Season 1!Sherlock, the cutie. And friends to lovers. Two of my favourite things. I do not own Sherlock Holmes, the character, the universe, the adaptations or anything: this is a work of fiction set on the BBC adaptation of Sherlock. Did I still write 8.2k words (exactly) for it? Yes. I also don’t own the song or the lyrics used within, and if you fancy it, listen to ‘Kiss Me’ by Ed Sheeran while reading.
Warnings - Bad language. Mentions of murder and drug usage. Mild angst. Smut, loss of virginity, masturbation, oral m receiving, penetration, unprotected sex, so 18+.
Summary - After a fight with John leaves Sherlock feeling particularly down, he calls on the one person who is always there to support him. Only tonight, it’s different. Feelings come to a head, exploration ensues, but is this just a one time thing? That depends on whether she stays the night...
TO SHERLOCK, it’s just another normal day, whereas to John? He’d rather not admit how regularly these awful days roll around. Sure, the case didn’t go as well as it could’ve, and Sherlock admittedly could’ve made much more of an effort to comfort John after the apparent ‘heartbreak’ he endured. He just could not understand it. Why the hell was John so emotionally responsive to a case they’d been on for less than twenty four hours which turned out to be a bust anyway?
“You are absolutely unbelievable!”
“People die every day, John. You’ve killed people, as have I. It isn’t that great a surprise.” Sherlock deadpans, picking up his teacup, raising it to his lips, drawing a long sip from the warm liquid.
“Oh, yeah, of course. The proud, the cold untroubled heart of stone, that never mused on sorrow but its own.” John mocks. “Do you not even care that people are still dead despite the fact you solved the case?”
“They’d be dead either way,” he reiterates, “at least we got to them before they completely decomposed. Will me caring about them stop them from being dead? No, Dr Watson, it will not.”
“John!” He mimics.
John slams his hands down on the desk, shaking the wood and everything resting on it, surely sending the vibrations through the floor and notifying Mrs Hudson of their ‘domestic’ as she so likes to call them. The buffalo even begins to swing. John’s tea is long forgotten, but Sherlock’s is keeping him grounded, calm, as John waggles his fist in Sherlock’s passive, blank face.
“You-” he pauses, gulping down breath. “You are a fucking machine, I can’t even deal with you right now. How dare you be so cold hearted and untroubled by this. You’re a disgrace.”
As if he hasn’t heard that one before, Sherlock scoffs.
Placing his teacup back down with a clink, he stands, the darkness of the night, of the room, closing in on them both. Nights like these really are danger nights, any night John leaves him. That’s what's coming next, but there isn’t a thing he knows to say or do to prevent the inevitable. He’ll simply just text Her instead, she’ll keep him grounded.
“Why? Emotional context? Emotion, whether of ridicule, anger, or sorrow, whether raised at a puppet show, a funeral, or a battle, is your grandest of levellers. The man who would be always superior should be always apathetic.”
With a huff like a bull, John viciously turns on his heel, blaspheming under his breath, cursing Sherlock out. He reaches for his coat and snatches it off the stand, slamming the door open.
“MACHINE.” John screams before pulling the door shut with a great slam, seething, the coat stand still rocking in his wake.
John’s footsteps thunder down the stairs, but before he’s even gone, Sherlock’s phone is withdrawn, and he’s tapping out a message.
Can you come over? Please? SH
It wouldn’t usually bother him as much. The case didn’t phase him, at all, but John’s opinion did. It always does. But today was a particularly long day of being brutish and rude, cold and distant, his usual and true self, but John’s more and more impatient with him now.
Being called a ‘machine’ is, again, nothing unusual, but this time it stings a little more than usual, especially after his recent arrest, and a fallout with Molly. He only has one person left, right now, who doesn’t hate him. His longest friend, the one he keeps away from it all so as to not tarnish her life with his misdeeds; Y/N, the one he can always rely on.
He knows she’s arrived by the sound of his window crashing open. Crawling up the bricks, skimming the drainpipe, latching onto the ivy; it’s her usual manner of entry. She never uses the door.
Putting his cups and saucers into the sink, he makes his way through the house, opening his bedroom door to find her already sitting there on the bed, her coat hung up on the hook, her work clothes clinging to her body.
“Hey there Mr Detective, you okay?” she asks as jovially as she can muster.
The way he ambles across the room, his dressing gown floating behind him, and slumps down onto the bed, instantly tells her he’s not okay at all. She can’t help but to look upon him sympathetically, edging a smidge closer to him, until he’s prompted enough to wrap his arms around her torso, finding his rightful place tangled around her. She knows him well enough - his past, and his current life - to realise she’s the only person he’s ever felt comfortable enough around to do this with, and that brings her a certain swelling pride in her bosom, one that doesn’t go unnoticed by Sherlock as he feels her skin heat up against his cheek.
It doesn’t take long, either, for his head to follow suit, burying into her chest. He’s always, always had a thing for her boobs, ever since they were in uni together.
That’s something so special about the two of them, he doesn’t have to say anything for her to know he’s not okay the way he does with everyone else. And naturally, he can read everything about her in a split second.
“I’m here, bud.”
Above all else, he just needs to know someone is there for him in moments like these. The world is cruel to him, and Y/N wishes more than anything that it wasn’t. Upon instinct, her hands stray, one to his back, pressing against the silk of his dressing gown, the other cradling his long neck, fingers knotting in the dark curls there.
She isn’t sure how long she stays there, simply holding him, feeling every twitch of his muscles, every breath of his against her skin, but she likes it. Of course she does, every time she likes it. Sherlock brings her an inordinate amount of comfort at the best of times, today is no exception, especially with what the day has held. Even when she’s the one comforting him, he doesn’t realise how much he helps her too.
His flat is so familiar, his bed as comfortable as her own. She knows his sock index, she’s studied his periodic table over his shoulder more times than she’d care to admit, and she even has her own toothbrush in the bathroom in case she has to pop over for an emergency freshen up. Sherlock has, and always will be, her first port of call, and that she remembers as she shifts further onto the quilted bedspread, her phone on his oak bedside locker.
His head begins to stir against her chest, his curls tickling her collarbones, small hums escaping his lips as he pushes himself up, his elegant yet trembling hands still splayed on her waist.
“I could feel your heart beating weirdly, what’s wrong?” he asks, quirking his eyebrows.
“Just the usual.” she vaguely replies.
Sherlock isn’t having it, though, and scans her a little more. “You’re still in your work clothes.”
“Great deduction. I was hoping you’d go a little deeper, though.”
“You hate wearing work clothes longer than necessary, which means you had plans straight after work, considering you finished… five hours ago? That’s your usual time for today. Counting overtime, forty five minutes, walk to your car, another ten, but your umbrella wasn’t working, round that up to an hour, leaving at 6. You arrived home, no, not home, at your boyfriend’s house for dinner. However, you’re not comfortable enough with one another yet for you to use his shower, or perhaps you are, but you elected not to, and stay in damp clothes that only had seventeen minutes to dry with the heater on in your car for the journey there. You ate dinner, Mexican, had a glass and a half of five percent wine, realised you couldn’t drive, but you didn’t particularly want to stay. Nonetheless you sat and watched the telly with him for hours, football, I can see the dreariness in your eyes. I know how much you hate it, and frankly, same. You stayed for almost all of the match, seeing as you’re now sober, but something else happened.” She lulls her head to the side, prompting him, her smile not meeting her eyes. “As soon as the match ended, he tried to make a move on you, he pressed his mouth to yours, he tried to push his hand up your skirt;” his throat bobs with a vicious gulp; despising the thought of anyone else laying a finger on her, “you swatted him away, rightfully so.”
He pauses a minute, his harsh tone of voice and his sharp face softening. He can see the vulnerability in her eyes, her walls about to crumble. This woman he appreciates so much. “He doesn’t deserve you.”
Smiling melancholically up at him, she brings her hand back to his hair, her fingers carding through the soft curls. His face buries back into her chest just as her voice offers a broken whisper, “I broke it off. I was the one who couldn’t commit this time.”
And as she lays her head on top of his, her breathing more shallow, resounding in her chest, he dwells over those very words. The way she said them, not to mention the words themselves, hold a myriad of meaning. What could she possibly-
The subtext, yes, impeccable. She’s always had a way with implications and subtext, always knowing that the likelihood of him actually picking up on it is little to none. But now, now he’s become trained to her, her way of life, her way of thinking, her way of speaking. This is too good an opportunity to miss. If she means what he thinks she means, ever hopeful, then this is completely unfamiliar territory.
Gathering all of his courage in one deep breath, he begins to pepper kisses on her skin. The faintest brush of his lips on the tops of her breasts, all that’s available to him with her shirt the way it is. He feels her heart flutter, her breathing stutter, but despite the chemical flush of her chest, he still isn’t quite sure she likes it. Not until he feels her grip on his hair increase, and he glances up to see her head thrown back. Her spine delicately arches against his hand, thrusting her chest further into his face.
His nimble fingers reach for her buttons, undoing the top two, giving him space enough to find the valley between her breasts. Lathering kisses there, licking the swells of her boobs, his tongue pulsates with the increased thrumming of her heart. The sensation is new, so unbridled, and he doesn’t quite know what to do with the stirring in his loins right about now. That unknowing is only further amplified by the sound that rips from her chest when he involuntarily bites down on the supple flesh. It couldn’t be… a moan?
Sure, he understands the chemistry of it, the reactions that occur in the synapses of the brain, the pheromones and hormones released when one is aroused, but this is all new to him. And, from his embarrassingly basic level of theory, surely that doesn’t start until some more stimulation on other parts of the body commence? Nipples, perhaps something lower down… then again, what does Sherlock know?
Of course it’s an intimate moment, the closest he’s been to a woman before, and maybe that’s why he freezes, stops, and she tugs his head up by his hair, her gentle, pleasured smile with her lips softly parted deepening the look of bewilderment painted onto his face. Her eyes are twinkling, alight with an excitement he hasn’t seen for far too long.
“What are you doing?” she whispers.
He shrugs his shoulders with a sudden force, his dressing gown falling off a little. “I don’t know. But now I feel like I read your pining words all wrong.”
She gasps, a wheezing sound, sucking the air from the room. She smacks his arm gently, muffled by his button-down and dressing gown. “I wasn’t pining! I was saying.”
“Hmm, same difference.”
Everyone must acquiesce when it comes to Sherlock Holmes. “But no, you didn’t read them wrong at all, but I know you don’t see me that way, you don’t feel things that way.”
He pauses, his beautiful plump lips pursed, fidgeting on the bed. Brushing her hair off her face reveals the pain she expressed. However, her eyes glued on his, sadness is betrayed in every line of his young, clean-shaven face. His entire bone structure is taking a nosedive.
“For you, I’ve been feeling everything from hate to love to lust, and I guess that’s how I know I want to hold you close.”
“Sherlock...” she whispers, her singular word an inflection of surprise.
Never tearing his eyes from her, his hand comes up to her cheek, rubbing his thumb over the slightly blushing skin, searching her face, with his big blue eyes, for a shred of reluctance. But, all he sees is her, so he elects to do what his heart is yelling at him to do for once, and kisses her breathless. His full lips holding hers, his one hand on her face, the other still wrapped around her back. Hers fly around his neck, clinging to him for dear life.
It doesn’t take long, their movements steadily heating, for their previously slow, intimate kiss to grow into something more, Y/N pulling herself up from the bed and making herself comfortable on Sherlock’s lap. His breath hitches in his throat, a cute little hiccupping sound escaping his lips in between embraces.
As much as he loves just this, soft caressing and gentle petting, he just knows she wants more. He does too, that much is evident from the length prodding at Y/N’s inner thigh as she moves gently on his lap. She won’t make a move, though, he’s too inexperienced, and she’s too much of a sweetheart to corrupt him, so she thinks. Ever since he first saw her, she’s been corrupting him slowly. He didn’t realise at first, but over the years, he began to understand, and now he’s in too deep.
For Y/N? It’s always been him. Every breakup she’s had, she’ll come to Sherlock’s flat, full well knowing the real reason she broke up with them, because she couldn’t commit, because she was too caught up on him.
Skimming his hands beneath her shirt, he savours the press of his hands on her bare skin, warmth seeping from her body into his, his fingers dancing along her spine. Electricity shocks her in bursts, unlike anything else, from his touch alone.
“May I take your shirt off?” he asks.
“Fuck, yes.” she groans. “May I do yours?”
“Be my guest.”
In a tangle of limbs, a few buttons pop off, and eventually, two shirts make it out the other side, tossed from the bed and into the laundry pile. Aka Sherlock’s floor. He’s like that: sock indexes, yet he won’t get a hamper. A walking contrast.
His thumbs press beneath the band of her bra, savouring the pressure of the flesh that falls into his hands, but that’s as far as he gets.
“Never undone a bra before?”
He shakes his head sheepishly. “I know the theory. Just… you always wear peculiar ones.”
“I wear relatively normal bras, and this one is certainly bog standard. Had I known you’d be undressing me Mr Detective, I’d have worn something nicer.”
“Just do it for me.” He requests, chuckling.
She unfastens her bra, and allows her breasts to spill from the cups, into Sherlock’s awaiting hands. The gasp that erupts from him sends Y/N’s brain into overdrive. He’s cupped her chest through her shirt before, buried his nose into her cleavage countless times, but never before have they had such skin on skin contact. Her lips press to his neck, shifting her closer to him. Sucking on his pressure point, she receives a similar gasp in response, only this one is more guttural, more a sound of pleasure than surprise. He’s wilting from a single kiss to his neck.
“Has no one ever given you a hickey?” She husks in his ear, her voice alone sending tremors down his spine.
“N- fuck, no.”
“I’ll make it worth it. All of this.”
“I know you will.”
She fuses her lips onto his again, savouring the faint hesitations as he grapples with his breath, eager to get some control on his mind with all that’s happening. Never did she ever think Sherlock would be here beneath her, his rough fingertips brushing over her peaked buds, and his palms dancing over her waist. Never did she think she’d hear him whisper his next words, either, not in a million years.
“More.” he pleads. “Can we do… more? Whatever that entails?”
“That depends what you want to do.”
“Get me out of these damn trousers. They're rather uncomfortable.”
She snorts lightly, a piggy like sound, the one they bonded over all those years ago. “I can feel why.”
“I imagine you want out of your work trousers, too.”
“God, yes; they’re ghastly.”
“I don’t think so.” he hums. “You look nice.”
Her cheeks begin to burn, blood rushing to colour them, betraying her true feelings, but as he tweaks her nose playfully, the little snort escapes again.
They were in the dining hall, second week of university, almost ten years ago, and Y/N was sitting with her friends, downing enough coffee to sink a ship, eating her hangover away, when her friends decided to make her laugh with tales of last night's drunken events. Unbeknownst to her, one of the greatest minds of the twenty-first century was sitting just a few seats down on the half-empty bench, watching her perceptively in his periphery. That’s when he first heard the sound. The cutest thing, and it startled him into action, beginning his deductions almost instantly. Admittedly, her student ID on the table aided him a little.
He shocked her from her haze, too, as soon as he spoke her name.
“Y/N, eighteen, jurisprudence first year, freshers week over with. You left a boyfriend back home, but you’re more sad about leaving your dog, as I would be. You don’t particularly care about law but know it’s a good undergraduate to receive anyway. Dyed hair, extrovert, killer hangover, and apparently there’s a little piggy living inside your nose. Sherlock Holmes, would you like some aspirin?”
“That’s weird; what are you, some kind of detective?” She asked, sans malice, a playful bounce to her words.
“Chemistry, going for a masters. But I do like the mystery, yes.”
“So you’re… bright. Nice to meet you, Sherlock, and it seems you know almost everything you need to know about me. But yes, I will take that aspirin, if you don’t mind. How was your weekend?”
He smiled at her, the first true smile he’d given in a long time. “It was nice, thank you.”
And thus a friendship was born, all because he heard her little piggy snort.
Her slender fingers work wonders with the fastener and zip of his suit trousers, and even manage hers too, all within the space of a few seconds, but Sherlock is reluctant to let her go, even just to get her trousers off.
“I need to sit up, just for a minute.”
“No.” Sherlock commands, insistent. “We can make this work.”
“Sure we can, but it won’t be very comfortable. Come on.”
She’s barely peeled away from him and wrestled hers off before he’s drawing her back in for a kiss, his trousers settled just above his knees.
“Sherlock,” she protests, mumbling against his lips, her hands on his heavenly, broad, muscular shoulders. “Sher!”
Her squeal at his sudden tug on her panties disappears, captured by his eager mouth. And in fact, her panties seem to disappear along with it, thanks to Sherlock’s swift movements and nimble hands. Maybe he’s had some experience to be so good at this…
“You sure you wanna go this far?”
“More sure than I’ve ever been. I need you.”
He takes a deep inhale, dropping his forehead against hers, his breathing coming out in bursts as he tries to get a grasp on the situation. “Kiss me.”
She doesn’t need to be told twice, instantly getting to work on the waistband of his boxers as his tongue lavishes her own. His hips rise briefly, just long enough for her to tug the elasticated material from around him, slipping past her, and then he kicks it into their growing pile of clothes. His length falls into her awaiting palm, and-
“Wow.” She exhales in amazement. “If I’d known you were packing this much, I’d have jumped you long ago.”
“No you wouldn’t.”
“Absolutely not, until tonight I thought you’d just laugh at me.”
He pecks her lips affectionately, “Never. You’re bloody beautiful, I’ll let you do anything to me.”
“Hmm, anything, you say?”
Stifling a chuckle against her neck, he recommences, “Maybe not anything.”
Yeah, that's definitely the right call. Still, she finds herself all but clawing at him, her breath hovering teasingly just over his lips, their noses touching, her hands clamped to his cheeks, feeling the building heat there. She must be making such a mess of his bed right about now, but for one night? It can’t matter.
This is a one time thing, it has to be. Sherlock just needs to release some tension, she just so happens to be there. Still, she can’t prevent the little glimmer of hope shining through at the possibility of this being a more-than-one-time thing. The moral compunctions of their friendship after this don’t matter anymore, because he’s leaving a fire in his wake, his delicious fingertips digging bruisingly into her bum before trailing lightly up her spine, skimming her shoulder, brushing her neck - arched for him to reach where he wants, able to mark her as his own - and finally slipping over her lips, taken obediently by her awaiting mouth. Christ, if there’s one thing she hopes for tonight, it’s that his actions never relent.
Whether it’s what he intends to happen or not, his fingers in her mouth give her an idea, one she prays he goes along with at least a little, so she pulls away. The dirty, telling smile on her face hints at what she’s about to do, lending Sherlock to shift a little more up the bed, his eyes following her every move. Hands splayed on his thighs, her small fingers gripping onto the fine hairs there, she begins to take his tip into her mouth, never once breaking eye contact with him. Yeah, this is what’ll drive him insane.
Inch by inch, she takes him into the welcoming heat of her mouth, pulling off slowly, only to go down again. She adds her tongue into the mix at some point, too, and her hand, on what she can’t reach, tickling his balls, but further than that, his mind is blank. Hot white, washed with pleasure. The sounds he emits are other worldly, so much that he has to muffle himself with his own hand; what would Mrs Hudson say? He’s always had such control over his mind and body, but this… he’s slowly losing all semblance of control, and he’s not even mad about it. What he does know is that there’s a building heat in his abdomen, a coil about to spring, and his cock is beginning to twitch. If she keeps going this incredible way, her teeth grazing him ever so gently, adding another new sensation into the mix, he’s inexorably going to finish before he can help it.
“As much as I adore your torturous ministrations, I think I need to be inside you…” He husks, his voice deep.
A smirk gracing her lips, she looks up at him through half-lidded eyes, mischief glinting in her pretty little mesmerising eyes for a second, before she hollows her cheeks and takes him wholly, allowing his length to slip partially down her throat. Her moan reverberates around him, and Sherlock begins to thrash above her, scrunching the duvet in his hands, not caring if it creases. If there’s one thing Sherlock hates, it’s creases. And being called a machine by his best friend. Right now, though, it seems as though every misstep in his day has led him here, into the welcoming heat of Y/N’s mouth, taking him so eagerly, her tongue lapping at the vein on the underside of his dick, a string of saliva remaining as she pulls away.
“I think you’ve got a couple of rounds in you, Mr Detective. Can you do that for me?”
“Y-yes.” He stammers, his head tossed back in pure ecstasy a moment later as she begins to work on the head with kitten licks. “But… can I s- fuck me, say something?”
“I plan on it.” she chuckles, “anything.”
She goes back to peppering kisses all over his member, tip to base, brushing his balls, working her way back up.
“Touch yourself f- for me.”
Her tone is more inquisitive than anything else, but upon that playfully rueful look in his lust-darkened baby blue eyes, she knows he’s going to get her back for this little display, and he’s just worked out how. It works both ways, she can prepare herself for what’s to come next while pleasuring him. And he gets to watch. It’s a win-win for him. Maybe he likes this sex thing a little more than he’s letting on.
“Are you sure you want me to? I’ll just make a mess on your sheets, Sher.”
She swallows him again, bobbing her head up and down on his length a few times while he grapples with literal reality. He’s teetering on the edge. One more move, and he’s a goner. His head is already against the wall, lolled there.
“I don’t care about the sheets, darling, I need you ready for me.”
She gulps, nods, and reaches one hand around her, skimming over her stomach, until it nestles between her thighs. She rubs her thumb over his tip, collecting the pre-come beading there, while she rubs over her throbbing pearl, pressing softly. Then, as she inches down on his cock, taking him in her mouth, she also collects the slick from between her thighs, and uses it as a lube to push a finger inside herself. Of all the times she’s touched herself, she never imagined, even in her wild Sherlock fantasies, that she’d be doing it with his dick down her throat. With every bob of her head, she scissors herself more, sinking back onto her fingers.
“I think I’m-” Sherlock begins to say, his words cut off by an utterly obscene moan splitting the air.
She hastily abandons her one post, and wraps both of her hands around his girth, working on what she can’t fit into her mouth with her increased speed, licking and suckling his head as he begins to fall apart, coming, with a scream, down her throat, his one hand clamped over his mouth, biting down harshly to silence his cries; the other buried in her hair.
His whole body falls lax, completely spent, meanwhile, Y/N savours every drop she’s been able to draw from him. He softens in her mouth, allowing her change to slip away from him, grasping a tissue from the bedside to wipe away any excess. That’s certainly something she never thought would happen…
He’s calm, though, smiling lazily through hooded eyes, his breathing regulated once more, making beckoning motions to her with his big hands. He’s placated, though, and sliding her hands into his, she’s allowed time enough to get into place, smiling softly at him, raking her fingers over his scalp in a comforting way. Even as she sits herself on his lap, she can feel him hardening beneath her ass, slowly but surely. She was right about him, he’s definitely got another round in him.
“Do you have a condom?” he asks.
“No, sweetheart, they’re in my other bag. I didn’t plan on getting any for a while… do you?”
“Not in here, that I’m aware of. John may have stashed some in my less favoured dressing gowns or socks, and he definitely has some upstairs, but I’m unawares.”
“I’m gonna sound crazy here, but do we need one?” She says hesitantly. His eyes widen, he cocks his head to the side. “I was tested after my last partner, I’m clean, and on birth control. You’re a virgin. There’s no point, is there?”
“You have a considerably good point.”
With that, energy rejuvenated a little, he wraps an arm around her body, flipping them over so he’s on top, shadowing her, looming over her, gazing down at every inch of her naked beauty.
“Take your time. I’ll be your safety.”
“I know.” he whispers, a tearful smile making its way onto her face. “Thank you.”
He needn’t say more, because she already knows why she’s being thanked. For her kindness, for making him so comfortable, for accepting the fact he’s still a virgin in his late twenties and, if he’s being honest, has no damn clue what the practicality and reality of sex is. Sure, he’s seen porn. He’s also looked at John’s laptop. But that doesn’t prepare one for when the moment comes. It’s like all of that goes out the window, and he simply remembers the first time he opened a biology textbook at secondary school, pictures of flushed organs staring back at him, desperately waiting to be relieved. That’s what his own coock is like right now, already hard again, virtually pulsating with hunger in his palm. He strokes himself a couple of times, glancing down at Y/N’s wide eyes.
“Are you okay? Can I…”
“Yes, Sherlock,” she chuckles, “whenever you’re ready.”
Now, he thinks. He rubs two digits through her folds, gathering her wetness, enamoured with the way it glistens on his fingertips. Tentatively, he brings his fingers up to his mouth, swirling his tongue around them to get a taste. Eyes rolling into the back of his head, he moans. She’s better than any cup of tea he’s ever had.
His cock slaps against his lower stomach pleadingly, so he grasps it in his hand, and begins to enter her, pushing gently, feeling every flutter of her walls. Her arms fly out, hands grasping his shoulders, nails leaving crescent moons in their wake at the delicious stretch. It’s nothing like they’ve ever felt before.
“Can I move?” He asks, balls deep inside her, their pelvises flush against one another.
“Please.” She all but begs.
Before doing anything else, Sherlock hooks one strong arm around her body, malleable in his hands, and holds her chest against his. Her breasts push into his skin, her nipples gaining friction from the dusting of hair there. Her one hand cups his slender neck, the other, his sharp cheek. Their eyes meet in a fierce gaze of burning intensity, and he begins to move. Slow, calculated, sharp thrusts punctuate her core. With every heavenly stroke, he can feel the ridges in her velvet walls, squeezing around him unwittingly.
“Jesus,” she cries, her clutch increasing.
“Hmm, not quite.”
The smirk in his words is quite literally audible. He’s so cocky, so full of himself, and fuck if she can’t feel another gush of arousal coursing through her, drenching his cock. How does he manage to be so attractive when he’s so dishevelled?
“Is that good?” He asks, unsure.
She brings her legs up, skimming the clenched backs of his thighs, until they wrap around him, drawing his hips into her at a new and improved angle. Heels digging into the base of his spine, he begins to move with a new purpose, his thrusts more passionate as his breath is drained from him by her kisses, his eyes alight with a new flame.
“Oh my God, Sherlock.” She pants, pulling him in for a kiss he greedily returns.
He drives his hips deeper, squeezing his fingertips into her supple waist bruisingly. It’ll be a mark that she belonged to him once, even just for one night. That’s when he reaches that special spongy spot that makes her entire body buckle. She all but screams, pressing into him wholly.
The coil is building, ready to break. He seems to be nearing the edge, too, his member twitching inside her when he buries himself particularly deep. She’s oh so fucking close… She licks into his mouth filthily, desperately clashing her teeth with his, eager for his kisses to tide her over. Silence her. Shifting his supporting hand, he trails one dextrous finger around to circle her clit, adding the faintest pressure for a moment. She mewls as he groans into her hot skin, clawing at him, entirely at his whim. Now he knows where to press, he settled his grip back around her, and draws her in close. This time around, he bends his knees a little more to measure his movements more carefully, ensuring that he ruts up and brushes her sensitive bud with his pelvis, helped by the extra friction of his neatly trimmed pubic hair on every thrust within her, his tip just scraping her g-spot.
“I- Sherlock, please tell me you’re- oh sweet mercy- close.”
He grunts softly in her ear. “So close.”
Their lips meet tenderly, passionately, in what they acknowledge to be a final kiss, moans mixing between them, savoured by the other.
His thighs clench, her legs tighten around his waist, and finally, her sweet walls flutter, squeezing him as she reaches her climax, his not following long after, spilling inside her, painting her soft walls white, marking her.
“Y/N,” he cries in ecstasy as his orgasm reaches him.
“Sher…” she repeats, her saving grace as pleasure washes over her entirely.
Their whole bodies wind up pressed together, bound together as one, skin on skin completely, becoming one another.
He lets her down gently, unravelling his grip, unsurprised when their sweaty skin sticks together. Her long legs unfurl, splaying in a butterfly. Sherlock tumbles ungracefully away, somehow landing with a certain gangly elegance on the space of mattress beside her, his arm instinctively flying over to place on her stomach, the skin hot and flushed red. Her chest moves hastily up and down with the thrumming of her heart, while his barely shifts despite his shallow breaths, his white skin glistening in the moonlight.
“Are you okay?” He huffs, turning on his side. “You look pretty fucked out.”
His baby blue eyes train instantly on her nipples, hard in the open air. This is the first notifier, the first inkling she has to feel self conscious, so she draws the sheet up around her as best as she can. Sherlock’s not having any of it, taking a stronghold on her arms, and pulling her until she’s lying on him, naught to separate them.
“I’ve never been this close to anyone physically and y'know.” He hums tiredly. She’s never heard him sound tired before…
She smiles up at him as best she can, “Are you glad?”
He begins to hold her ever closer, squeezing her tighter, feeling every ridge of her body.
“I’m so glad that you were my first, in so many ways.”
Praise from Sherlock is a rarity, and she’ll take it as and when she can, savouring every moment, this time by holding him like a koala, her grip not wavering.
“I’m glad too, Mr Detective.”
He brushes a kiss to her cheek, “As much as I like this, we need to get you cleaned up.”
A supporting arm beneath her bum, he picks her up, and unsteadily ambles into the bathroom.
“I don’t know much about this, but I know you should probably use the toilet, should you want to avoid a UTI, so if you’d like me to leave…”
He sets her down on the loo seat, cupping his hands over his nether regions, and he hurries to grasp for things, until she puts her hand on his arm, squeezing in a conciliatory manner.
“You do remember the camping trip, don’t you? You really don’t have to leave just because I have to pee, you never did before. In fact, you frequently annoyed me with it if you had a particular point to make, steadfastly refusing to leave the bathroom after following me in there when I went to pee. Why does this change anything?”
He shrugs, dropping whatever was in his arms, “It just doesn’t feel the same now, though.”
“Ooo, and now Mr Detective feels things.” She jokes, poking at his ribs.
He recoils, chuckling with her, “Only for you.”
As Y/N washes her hand, Sherlock begins to wrangle with a floorboard, clattering about until he eventually pulls out a small lock box, from which he withdraws a packet of brand new marks-and-spencer's ladies briefs.
“Why the fuck do you have these? Anything you wanna tell me?” she asks, eyes wide.
“John’s idea. He has plenty of girls over here who frequently stay the night, simply a precautionary error.” He takes a beat, gargling with some mouthwash, “they’re clean, new, I just don’t like the idea of you in dirty underwear, and I know how reluctant you are to go without them whenever you’re not in your own bed. I stayed with you enough nights in university to know that.”
Those nights were awfully painful. She’d take the floor, he’d take the bed, and every time she’d have to wash the sheets. He’d sweat and vomit, shake and cry, plead for the pain to be over. He wouldn’t go to hospital, he wouldn’t call his brother, he’d just turn up on her doorstep, high as a kite, almost in tears, knowing he’d gone a little too far. And each time, it was a little farther.
“Thank you, Sherlock.”
She takes them from him, and begins to shimmy them up her legs, only prevented by Sherlock moving to grab a handful of her arse.
“Hmm, I like this. Fancy another round?” He smirks.
“I’m too tired, babe. Give me a bit.”
He can see the lazy smile on her face, the tiredness in her pretty eyes, so he wets a flannel, and begins to clean her up with gentle movements between tender kisses.
“How do you know how to do all of this?” She asks, inquisitive more than anything.
“Instinct, I suppose. I never read or learned about it, seeing as I never thought it would happen.”
She snaps the waistband before moving her hands to his waist, leaning up onto her toes to reach him, kissing her softly.
“Look at you now.”
After brushing their teeth in an amicable silence, their pinky fingers overlapping on the porcelain of the sink, he aids her back to the bedroom, settling her on the bed. She has things here: deodorant, toothbrush, moisturiser, and yet somehow she doesn’t have underwear, even after all these years. Perhaps that's one too many things to explain…
With superfluous extravagance, he throws her his shirt, offering her a wry wink. She finds a blush clawing its way onto her cheeks, dumbfounded. It smells like him, just like a forest glade if it was rained on by tea and cigarettes. Maybe he’ll let her keep it as a memory.
In such a short amount of time, she’s learnt that he has a very sensitive neck. Very. A single kiss there has him biting back a moan. A low one at that, considering his deep voice also drops almost an octave when he’s aroused. His nipples are almost as sensitive as his neck, and he rather likes it when she tugs on them unwittingly.
His first orgasm comes quickly, but his refractory period is astonishing, and it takes longer to achieve a second high, long enough to make her come more than once, she assumes, though her first orgasm was mind blowing enough for two. Perhaps that’s just because it’s his first time, but it’s impressive nonetheless.
What’s the point in learning all of this if, once he comes around from his post-orgasmic haze, he’ll pretend like it never happened, in typical Sherlock style?
The shirt, though a small gesture, means a lot, and her vision begins to cloud as she looks down at the black cotton.
“You mean you want me to stay?” She croaks.
Sherlock turns to her from his set of drawers, his face full of apparent obviousness, brows furrowed in that cute bewildered way.
“Of course I want you to stay.” He states, like it’s the plainest thing in the world, like it’s stupid for her to even ask. But she’s silent, and when she says nothing in response, he launches into a long winded explanation: don’t show sentiment. “I- I just mean, i-it’s midnight, I’m not having you out in London alone. You stay with me. Only if you want to as well...”
She nods eagerly, “Yes. Yeah, course I want to stay.”
He all but leaps access the room, jumping onto the bed, before planting a proper smooch on her lips, grinning down at her. He slips into his usual side of the bed, and she takes hers, rolling to look at him.
“Don’t get cold.” He warns, tucking the duvet up around her shoulders. She giggles like a child, that small snort sounding again, prompting Sherlock to press his thumb to her nose like a button. “How are you… feeling?”
“I’m fine bub, really. That bloke doesn’t matter to me at all. Bit of a scumbag if I’m honest. You’re the one I’m with, the one I wanna talk about. How are you feeling? Must’ve been a pretty big blow up with John for you to call me and be so... teary.”
He sighs, crestfallen, “He called me a machine.”
Her gasp pierces the air, her hand flying to his hair, stroking in consolation, cooing senseless reassurances to him. She’s done this innumerable times, but now it feels different, like there’s no barrier.
“He’s done it so many times that it needn’t bother me anymore, but the way he looked at me, like I was this abhorrent monster, especially after the day and the disappointing case we had, it got to me. I hate having feelings.”
“You don’t have to hide them with me, though.”
He hums gently, burying into her chest. “I know. That’s why I treasure you so dearly.”
“That means you also have to trust me, and you’re not going to like what I have to say.” His chest heaves, shifting her whole body. That’s his way of giving in. “Please just talk to John. You know that whenever he leaves, he’ll come back, and try to pretend it never happened. He needs to know you’re human and that he upset you, but also that the case upset you as well. No one’s superhuman, and once you let John in on the fact that you’re not a machine, things between you will be so much easier, because you might agree for once.”
“I suppose you’re right.” He grumbles.
He pulls her into his warmth, hooking her leg around his as he snakes his arms around her back, breathing deeply from the crook of her shoulder. She begins to pepper kisses on his salty skin, savouring the taste with every small swipe of her tongue.
“Your heart’s against my chest, your lips pressed to my neck,” he breaks off with a faint whimper when she sucks a little harder, “I’m falling for your eyes, but they don’t know me yet.”
“Of course they do,” she whispers brokenly, hoarsely, “they’ve always known you.” She swallows thickly, “Does that mean it’s a feeling you’ll forget?”
“No, I don’t think I ever can.”
The silent words that pass between them both are so special, too special to be spoken aloud. ‘Think I’m in love now.’
“Kiss me like you wanna be loved.” He begs.
And really, who is Y/N to deny him? They just stay that way a little while, revelling in their lazy kisses, until she begins to fall asleep. It isn’t the first time she’s fallen asleep in his bed, not by any means, but it’s the first time she’s fallen asleep in his arms. She isn’t mad about it.
“Settle down with me, cover me up, cuddle me in. You were made to keep my body warm.” She smiles into her words, and embeds herself into him, entirely covered by the duvet, spattered in his kisses, safe in his arms. Sherlock feels safe with her legs around him, her fingers in his curls, holding himself against her. Amicable silence is how they drift off, Peaceful.
John re-enters 221B at a respectable hour. He got a fair amount of sleep on Greg’s sofa, having no girlfriend in the picture right now, but not enough to deal with Sherlock just yet. Not before his coffee. He expects to see Sherlock sitting in the exact same spot as when he left, perhaps just with a refill of tea, his fingers still steepled beneath his chin, eyes closed yet wide awake. Instead, he arrives at a seemingly empty, considerably clean flat, with no Sherlock in sight. Perhaps the unsleeping man must actually be asleep, he thinks, so he quietens down, and toes off his shoes before wandering farther into the flat. Even if the man does piss him off extraordinary amounts, perhaps he should just check he’s okay…
He gives the bedroom door a quiet rap, listening in momentarily before pushing it open. Frankly, he’d rather have found Sherlock with a cigarette in hand and the whole flat torn to shreds for the level of surprise he gets upon reaching the bed. His first idea is to scream bloody murder, but that might annoy Mrs Hudson, and upon stepping closer, even in the sliver of daylight through the curtains, he sees the duvet riding down a little. The last thing in the world he ever thought he’d see: Sherlock in naught but boxers pressed against a half naked woman, his palm splayed on her bare thigh. Sherlock? Spooning? It seems so, his entire body pressed to this woman. John feels himself go rigid, his feet glued to the floor, his gaze unmoving from shock.
It takes his phone to buzz in his pocket to get him moving, and when he does, all he tries to do is balance precariously on his tip toes in a wry attempt to get a birds-eye view of the whole thing. He’s not disappointed, or disturbed, once he does, though, his army agility proving useful. Sherlock’s hand is holding her, fingers entwined, just next to her chest. He wonders how comfortable it is, but if they’re staying this way, it can’t be too bad. Maybe all Sherlock needed to loosen up was a good shag.
She’s wearing his shirt, too; Sherlock’s black dress shirt from the previous day. And Sherlock? He never seeps in anything less than a full set of pyjamas, he’s weird like that .
This girl begins to stir, her lips parting gently, small hums escaping. Next, her eyelids flutter, and her hair shifts on the pillow. He didn’t make any noise, did he? John was specifically careful not to, just in case. He doesn’t fancy Sherlock’s wrath just yet.
One eye opens, and she whispers, almost incoherently, “Hi John.”
How she knows his name and who he is, he’s not at all sure, because he doesn’t think he’s ever seen this face in his life. The hair is familiar, and maybe, if she were more awake, he’d recognise her smile, but he’s never seen a woman in Sherlock’s company beside Molly Hooper. Speaking of…
Before he can even say anything, though, before he can ask who she is or if she wants tea or if she date-raped his roommate, she’s mumbling, and detaching her hand from Sherlock’s, rolling over. Dumbfounded, John just stands there and watches her cuddle into Sherlock’s chest, her arms wrapping around his torso like second nature. Even in his sleep, not consciously thinking about his actions, he grips her back - one hand resting just above her bum, and buries his nose into her neck.
John can’t help but smile to himself. Maybe their fight was for the best if Sherlock now has a girlfriend, someone he turned to for solace. So, he grasps for the top of the duvet and pulls it up over both of their figures, reaching their shoulders, and leaves, staring wistfully for a brief moment at the seemingly happy couple.
The weight of the duvet of what startles Sherlock, though, stirring him a little, inviting him to him against Y/N’s skin, smiling with eyes barely open. This is really nice, he thinks to himself, not waking up alone.
She smiles back blearily, and in her morning voice, whispers to him, “Kiss me Mr Detective.”
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Beneath x the x Ice (AO3 HisoIllu fic) Chapter 5
A fic where there’s more to Illumi than meets the eye. Hisoka goes to great lengths to help him realise he deserves better than the Zoldycks and being a puppet to his parents, even at the expense of their friendship. Slow-burn HisoIllu. Read the whole thing here.
Illumi stopped in his heel for a couple of seconds. He had to squint, to evaluate if the redhead that looked from side to side every now and then, leaning against the diner’s window, was Hisoka. His mouth formed a small “o”.
It really was.
He stuck his hands in his pockets, and approached him.
“Hisoka,” he called, halfway to the diner.
The redhead perked up, and looked at the direction the voice came from. He smiled as the assassin walked towards him.
The Zoldyck stopped, now face-to-face with the magician. He subtly scanned him from head-to-toe, even though he had already done that when walking to him. Hisoka was fashioning a teal cardigan with a grey sweater underneath, khaki pants, and a sage coloured scarf. His hair was layered down, and he wore no make-up.
“So,” Illumi broke the silence, “I take it you’re cold tonight.”
Hisoka’s shoulders shook in laughter. “I have no idea how you could tell. ♠”
Now it was the magician’s turn to eye the assassin. He fashioned the same clothing from lunch. His smile stretched.
“Hm?” Illumi inquired, noticing Hisoka’s foraging eyes.
“You’re looking lovely. You have an interesting fashion sense for an assassin, I must say. ♦”
“As do you,” Illumi replied. “You’re like a rainbow with all those colours on you.”
Hisoka was expecting the assassin to mention how he wasn’t wearing make-up, how his hair was down, or how he wasn’t dressed the way Illumi complained about days prior. Well, he was disappointed.
“Are we going to see the meteor shower here?” Illumi asked, knowing that a city was the worst place to see such an event due to the light pollution.
“Oh, you offend me, Illu. I’m not so cheap! ♠” he ran fingers through his hair, cheeky smile on his face. “I have a very nice night planned for us, you see. ♥”
“I understand,” Illumi replied. He enjoyed the way Hisoka looked right now. “I suppose I’ll allow you to lead the way.”
“Oh?” Hisoka brought his fist to his mouth, chuckling. “So, you’re a sub? ♦”
“What?” the assassin didn’t understand what he meant.
“Nothing,” Hisoka waved his hand with a grin, shrugging off his previous statement. If he had to explain the joke, it would obviously lose the humour. “Come on, Pacific Park is nearby. The meteor shower shouldn’t hit until midnight. ♣”
“What?” Illumi repeated.
Hisoka cast a backwards glance.
“That’s five hours, Hisoka. Why couldn’t we have met at nine as originally planned? Or ten?”
“I told you, Illu,” he smiled “I have a nice night planned for us. ♥”
Illumi blinked at him.
“Will you trust me? ♠”
“I’m hungry,” the assassin announced. “I skipped supper because of this, so food better be in your plans.”
Hisoka moaned, drawing the attention of people walking near-by. A mother tightened the grip on her daughter’s hand, walking faster to get away from the odd redhead.
Illumi seemed indifferent to yet another one of Hisoka's eccentric episodes.
Hisoka placed a hand on his chest. “You skipped supper for me?” He squinted his eyes in a long smile.
“I suppose so, yes.”
“Oh, Illu… ♥”
Illumi’s sight wandered, from side to side, eyeing every person walking past them. Two pedestrians, in particular, ogled Hisoka as if he were disgusting. For some reason, this upset Illumi.
“Are we leaving or not?” he asked.
“Yes, of course! ♥” Hisoka led the way.
Illumi followed. They walked for various minutes. The city lights gleamed their faces. They walked past people, pets, bars with neon signs—and during the entire trip, Illumi could see Hisoka talking.
He talked, and talked. He swirled his body, looked back at Illumi; always fashioning that cheeky smile. The Zoldyck followed Hisoka mindlessly, but he was, quite frankly, not listening to him. Then, they reached their destination. Pacific Park.
It was an amusement park located on the coast. It wasn’t large, but it was cosy, and housed very entertaining attractions. The most visually appealing ones, or, in other words, the first you would notice immediately, were the neon-lighted roller-coaster that whirled the park, and the Ferris wheel that sentinelled the ocean.
Hisoka was about to do a spectacular, charming introduction to the park, but Illumi beat him to it and spoke up first.
“Are we going to eat here?” Illumi asked.
Frankly, Hisoka wasn’t planning on taking Illumi to dine until ten. His original plan was to spend time together at the amusement park, ride some attractions, chat, attend one of the stage shows, to then dine at one of Illumi’s favourite restaurants. The final act of the night would be the meteor shower, which they would see on a lake five-miles from here.
He figured that, being isolated from the world as a child, Illumi was never taken to places like this. He thought it’d be interesting for the lonely assassin to experience it.
“Yes! ♥” Hisoka responded with pride. “But!” he emphasised, “not dinner per se, because first—"
“I don’t like this place,” Illumi decided.
“Sorry?” Hisoka didn’t appreciate being interrupted.
“I don’t want to eat here. What was the plan? To eat, then ride something? I would get nauseous. Or to ride something, then eat? I don’t see the fun. This is not a nice place to eat. I would’ve much preferred a restaurant.”
Hisoka felt offended over Illumi’s critiquing of his plan. Why couldn’t the assassin not be dense for once, and allow things to flow?
“Now, Illu, don’t be impatient!” he rose a hand. “We will dine, at Mirazur to be precise. However, the reservation is at ten, and don’t you agree it would be fun to do something else first? This is a spectacular place! ♠”
The assassin looked around. “I don’t see the big deal,” he lied. The place looked gorgeous, and he enjoyed the visually appealing night-lights.
Hisoka bolted towards Illumi, positioning himself behind him. He gently grabbed his shoulders. “There’s a lot to do! There are these rides,” he pointed to the rollercoaster and Ferris wheel, then a pirate ship on the far left, “there’s a shooting range,” he pointed to the distant right. “There are stage-shows up ahead,” he pointed to the front.
He rested both hands on Illumi’s right shoulder, and leaned his chin on them. “It will be fun. I promise. ♥” He smiled.
Illumi pierced him with his large and impassive, black eyes. He wondered why Hisoka was so close to his face. “Okay.”
“Good! ♦” Hisoka clapped once. “Let me give you a tour, shall we? But,” he rose a finger, “let’s get ice-cream first.”
Illumi’s eyebrows rose. “Ice-cream?”
“I am okay with that,” Illumi approved.
He loved sweets. Being thoroughly denied them as a child, he developed an itching need to consume them often. He would take advantage of this.
They approached one of the ice-cream stands. It was massive. There were several people in-line, and Illumi wished he could stick his needles in them to make them leave. By the way the assassin observed them, Hisoka was able to deduce, immediately, his intentions. He smiled. Suddenly, Illumi felt a gentle touch on his wrist. He looked to his left, where Hisoka stood.
“Now, now, Illu… don’t try anything funny. We’re in public. ♠”
“Who are you to say that? You moan in public all the time.”
“Mm, but that’s not the same as trying to kill people. ♣”
How ironic of Hisoka, of all people, to say such a thing.
“I wasn’t planning on killing them,” Illumi muttered. “Just make them leave.”
The magician grazed his thumb over the assassin’s wrist, much to the latter’s discomfort. “You are very lucky to have me,” Hisoka stated proudly. “Don’t fear, Illu, I will teach you how to behave in public! ♠”
“Excuse you?” Illumi interjected. “I very well know how to behave in public. Who are you to—” he stopped in his tracks.
Hisoka narrowed his eyes with a long smile.
He’s just trying to rile you up. It takes two to tango.
“You are correct,” Illumi looked forward.
“Ah?” Hisoka’s smile reverted, puzzled.
“Yes,” Illumi responded, not making any sense.
Hisoka opened his mouth to say something, but his dense friend interjected.
“I will have three scoops, all different flavours,” he announced. “What will you have?” he looked at Hisoka.
Oh, this man was so endearing. Hisoka could barely contain himself.
“Oh, Illu… ♥” his smile stretched.
“Hello,” the female cashier greeted.
“Oh, hello,” Hisoka boldly leaned forward, resting his elbows on the counter. He bore a coquettish smile. “A banana split, no whipped cream. I want almonds for a topping. Please do sprinkle them everywhere. ♥”
Illumi caught the flustered look on the young cashier’s face. He supposed she wasn’t used to having such a charismatic, bold customer.
“And you, sir?” she looked at the assassin. His impossibly large, onyx eyes made her feel uneasy. He was quite attractive, but she’d rather look at the redhead that bore a much more inviting expression.
“I want a large ice-cream cone, three scoops. One cookies and cream, one caramel and one chocolate.”
The cashier nodded, smiling. She announced the price, and Illumi sought his wallet to pay for his snack.
Hisoka stopped him in his tracks. “How silly of me! ♠” he slapped his forehead. “Did I not mention I would be the one to pay, Illu ♥?”
While his intention was to be the same old-fashioned, quirky Hisoka, the cashier couldn’t help but believe these two were a couple.
Illumi spoke, as impassive as ever. “No, thanks, Hisoka. I’ll pay for my own." He was about to hand the money, but Hisoka held his hand and pulled it down.
“I insist. ♥” He purred.
That whispery, half-growl tone definitely stirred something strange in Illumi’s belly. Hisoka was weird…
“Oh, well,” Illumi shrugged, getting off the line. If he had free ice-cream, better for him.
He walked towards one of the nearest attractions. His eye shifted from the ride to the sign. It was called “King’s Dominion,” a 305 foot drop-tower with a 72mph descent.
Currently, people were mounting the ride. It would begin shortly.
He felt a tap on his shoulder. He turned, and it was Hisoka, offering his ice-cream cone.
“Thanks,” Illumi muttered, eyes shifting back to the ride.
Hisoka noticed something curious. The more time passed, the more Illumi’s guard eased. Right now, he was alert enough to anticipate any sort of danger, but he was relaxed enough to enjoy his surroundings. In fact, he was so relaxed, he didn’t notice the way Hisoka was looking at him. Hisoka was fascinated, taking small spoons of his banana split.
He wasn’t paying attention to the crazy night-lights, the people screaming in near-by rides, or the people walking past them. His attention was, irrefutably, focused on no one but Illumi and Illumi alone.
The ride was about to commence. Illumi leaned forward expectantly.
“Illu,” Hisoka chuckled, “you haven’t tasted your ice-cream. ♦”
Illumi did not respond. He watched as the tower went up. He could see the people getting smaller and smaller, some wiggling their legs. His lips were parted, eager to find out what would happen next.
Hisoka never took his eyes off him.
The tower stopped. Faint “yeah”s and “whoo-s” could be heard from above.
Illumi quickly took a bite of his ice-cream, as to not miss a single second of what was about to occur. He licked his lips.
Hisoka was dying.
Then, screaming ensued. The tower dropped, and all Illumi could see was hands and feet wiggling in the air.
The ride stopped midway. The fascinated assassin gasped quietly.
Then, it went back up.
“Oh!” Illumi uttered, surprised.
It went back down. The motion was repeated three times, until the ride finally dropped for the last time, stopping. The riders unbuckled their belts, and ran to the exit, some quite tipsy.
Hisoka loved how disbelieving Illumi looked. In a way, he couldn’t understand how Illumi had never seen something like this before.
Illumi finally noticed the way Hisoka stared at him. He turned to look at him. “What?”
“Nothing,” he smiled, taking a spoonful of his banana split. “You simply haven’t eaten your ice-cream yet. ♣”
“I took a bite,” Illumi refuted.
“Yes, but that’s not eating it. ♠” Hisoka repositioned his scarf. “It’s melting! ♥”
“Oh, yes,” Illumi agreed, looking at drops run down the cone. He licked the ice-cream, from the second scoop to the third. “That is very good,” he concluded.
“Yes, I can see… ♥” Hisoka hoped Illumi would continue doing such a gesture.
Illumi’s nose tickled. He inhaled, then sneezed gracefully. Hisoka couldn’t believe how he could look perfect doing even that. He felt something cold hit his shoes, and that’s when he saw Illumi’s ice-cream. The sudden movement made the scoops drop from the cone.
Illumi eyed it, and blinked. “Oh, no,” he stated, in the most monotone voice possible. He sounded robotic, and like he couldn't care less. But truly, he really was bummed his ice-cream fell. It was rather amusing to Hisoka how that hollow, robotic tone betrayed Illumi's words of despair.
“That’s okay,” he shook off his feet, ignoring what just happened. “I can get you another one. ♦”
“No, but thanks,” Illumi announced, throwing the cone in the stand’s trash can. “I would like to ride something now.”
Ride me. Hisoka thought. “Mm. Would you like to ride that one? ♥” he pointed at the drop-tower they just observed.
“I believe so, yes.”
“Okay,” Hisoka grabbed a large spoonful of his ice-cream, and offered it to Illumi. ”Here! ♥”
Illumi stared for a couple of seconds. “What are you doing?”
“Hm? I’m offering you a spoonful of my ice-cream. ♣”
“Yes, I can see,” Illumi looked at the spoon. “But why?” his eyes shifted back to the redhead.
“It’s ice-cream, Illu. You dropped yours, and sharing is caring. Why wouldn’t you want it ♥?” he chuckled.
Illumi blinked at him.
“It’s not poisoned… ♠”
“Yes, but you ate from that spoon,” Illumi remarked.
“Sorry?” Hisoka pulled the spoon away from him.
“You put your mouth there. Why would I eat from there?”
Hisoka’s lips parted. Was Illumi implying he disgusted him? He felt very offended, something he didn’t know was possible for someone like him.
“Can we ride the drop-tower now?” Illumi asked.
“Go ahead, I’ll watch from here,” Hisoka stated, looking forward at the ride, eating the rejected spoonful of ice-cream.
“You’re not coming?” Illumi inquired.
“Well, I did just say I’d watch from here. That means I won’t go, no?” he kept the spoon in his mouth for a couple of seconds.
Illumi only began to notice something was off. Hisoka was acting different, all the sudden.
“You’re acting strange,” Illumi stated matter-of-factly.
“Ah,” is all Hisoka responded. He still looked forward, avoiding Illumi’s gaze.
“Oh!” the assassin brought his fist to his palm, believing he figured out what changed Hisoka’s mood. “I splattered ice-cream on your shoes. Is that why?”
Hisoka finally looked at him, lips pursed in annoyance. Illumi gazed at him expectantly, to which Hisoka could only laugh. Laugh at Illumi’s denseness, laugh at himself for feeling offended; laugh at how Illumi was making this night not-too-easy to enjoy the way Hisoka expected. It would be a waste of time trying to explain the simple-minded assassin why the magician felt offended to begin with.
“I haven’t finished this glorious treat, Illu, ♥” Hisoka chuckled, in attempts to lighten the mood again. “I can’t ride while eating it.”
“Oh,” Illumi felt silly for believing something was wrong to begin with. “I’ll wait for you.”
“Are you sure? ♦” the magician inquired.
He waited in silence as Hisoka took his time eating his ice-cream. He was almost done, now eating the bananas. They watched a second round from the attraction.
“Okay. ♥” Hisoka threw the empty container.
They waited in line. Hisoka peeked at Illumi, who was blankly looking forward. He broke the silence by chuckling, drawing the assassin’s attention.
He tried to softly run fingers through Illumi’s hair, but the latter pulled back before he could touch him.
Oh, Illu… why must you make this so difficult? “You should tie your hair, otherwise it’ll be rather uncomfortable. ♣”
“Oh,” Illumi muttered. “I didn’t bring a hair-tie.”
“What about your needles? ♦”
“They’re a bother to tie my hair with,” he brought his hair up and gathered it around itself to make a bun. "But I suppose I've no other choice," he kept it in place with two needles.
He looked intimidating, but in an enigmatic, attractive way. And Hisoka loved it.
“Mm. Scary. ♥” Hisoka purred, observing him intently.
There it was again. That tone, and the slight narrowing of Hisoka’s golden eyes. It stirred something in Illumi, something he couldn’t identify. A strange, warm feeling.
They were next.
Hisoka was incredibly excited, hoping that the vertigo would produce an expression in Illumi. Oh, he couldn’t wait!
They sat next to each other and buckled their belts, waiting for everyone else to accommodate. Hisoka looked like an excited child, which Illumi found amusing. Could he blame him, though? The assassin felt a dull hint of excitement himself.
They went up.
Hisoka held Illumi’s hand, and rose his arm. Illumi immediately pulled it back. “What are you doing?”
“Put your hands up, Illu! ♥” Hisoka smiled. “It makes it more fun,” He insisted, grabbing his hand again.
Hisoka’s long, slender fingers felt warm and delicate wrapped around Illumi’s. It was odd to the assassin how these deadly fingers capable of crushing bone and stone could feel so… inviting.
The ride, now at the top, remained still for five seconds.
Illumi heard piercing screams, and wind abruptly hit his face. A tingly sensation overcame his stomach, but his expression remained the same. It felt similar to when he jumped off a building. He suddenly felt squeezing in his hand, and recalled Hisoka was holding it. He turned to look at the redhead, and found a strange child-like innocence in him.
Hisoka bore a huge grin, his scarf flew up his face. He swung his legs, yelling “whoo-s". He looked relaxed, and happy. Illumi found it strange, but endearing. He found himself, reflexively, squeezing his hand back. Had you asked Illumi why he did it, he wouldn’t know what to reply. His answer would simply be “because it felt right.”
Read the rest of the chapter here.
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