#And I answered without beating an eye “because that coat represents his position at the pm and everything he's ever known
hwarangbangbang · 11 months
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Ringing sounded, followed by rushing water to his ears, Jimin staring up at his younger brother with a look indescribable. A mix of emotions -- all hitting him at once.
Anger. Pain. Disbelief. Surprise. Fear. Pride.
In their line of work, death was always one hundred percent guaranteed. Even those within the lowest levels of power came to understand that lives were limited and only came once -- might as well live your life to the fullest and rise the ranks as quickly as you can. The higher your position, the more protection you received, the more indispensable you were, the more likely you were that you'd be kept around.
For the eldest brothers of the Busan Mafia, however, it came much quicker for one than the other.
Warmth pooled at Jimin's abdomen, freely coating the black material of his button up, leaving a shine in the low lights of their penthouse balcony. His words were strained, eyes searching his brother's for an answer to so many questions.
"You'd shoot your own brother? I didn't think you'd have it in you."
History was always doomed to repeat itself, the struggle of those in power to have it all -- to rise to the top and secure that position.
Jimin was the eldest son of the leader for the Busan Mafia. He showed promise, as did his predecessor so many years ago -- regal, intelligent, well skilled in the ways of his environment and how to deal with other gangs and lower level mafia that threatened to challenge their own. He knew when to speak, and when to stay silent, rather letting his actions speak for him.
Jungkook was the youngest son, and so very competitive. He always challenged his father's rule, and often went against his orders to prove he was strong enough to represent the family. He was hot headed, and sick of always coming in second place to his eldest brother. With his father in midst of stepping down, it was a power grab for who would take the position of leader.
Jungkook refused to come in second to his brother this time. The final time.
"Hyung.. you left me no choice." Jungkook breathed out through bated breaths, his hands curled around the gun as he looked his older brother dead in the eye. "We both cant be the leader. I deserve it! I've worked harder than you ever have!" He refuted, his voice coming out broken and hurt.
"Father.. Father would have chosen you, Jungkook." Jimin reached out to grasp for Jungkook's arm, wanting his brother close to him in what felt like it would be his final moments. He had so much to say, even when Jungkook scoffed and threw the gun away in his anger. "Father wouldn't have chosen me, Hyung, you know that-"
Jimin gripped on to Jungkook's collar, between that and the hold on his arm it being the only thing keeping him standing. The world was blacking out on the edge of Jimin's vision, he knew he wouldn't be conscious much longer as his legs began to give. "I stepped down.. I- I told father you would take my s-spot."
Jungkook was floored, he wouldn't believe it - couldn't believe it. Why would his brother do something so selfless like give up the highest position of power in the mafia, the leader?
Memories of the two flooded Jungkook's head, of their time growing up together. When Jimin would give Jungkook extra pieces of boiled egg or meat in their food without him having to ask. When Jimin would take the beatings their father dished in Jungkook's spot when he would misbehave. When Jimin stepped down from asking a girl out because Jungkook had a crush on her. So many memories of Jimin giving the world to his brother, being selfless, being a good big brother to him.
And this was how he repaid him?
With a bullet?
Jungkook had grasped the severity of the situation and it was like everything had hit him at once. Pain. Regret. Humiliation. Anger at himself. All plunging into his heart like bullets of their own as he fell with his brother to the ground in his arms.
He picked up his phone, dialing the number of the bodyguard Namjoon who oversaw both brothers closely, yelling at him to call an ambulance, and he cradled Jimin to his chest as he felt the weight heavy on his chest of what he truly had done.
"Someone- some-, someone will have to run father's c- company-" Jimin whispered, and Jungkook shushed him, "stop- don't speak, don't. Help is coming- Joon is bringing help!" Jungkook held pressure to Jimin's hand over the wound, hoping to any God listening that he would be okay, he would make it, that he hadn't hit any major organ. He wanted to take it back, he swore he'd give his soul to take it back. "Kook-ah," Jimin whispered, tasting copper in his mouth as he coughed.
"Long live the King."
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messwriting · 3 years
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Written for The Smut Pile Collab: Mafia AU | MASTERLIST HERE.
Osamu Miya (Post-Time Skip) x Mob Boss! Female Reader
“Backed into a corner, Osamu makes a deal with the devil -- you.”
Rating: E for explicit | Don’t read this if under eighteen.
Warnings: oh boy. Dub-con (Osamu does consent, but it is coercion); MANIPULATION AND EXTORTION; slight gun play, lasts for a moment; Rough sex; Hate-fucking; Degradation/Humiliation; Spanking, also just for a moment; Oral sex, fingering; Orgasm Denial; Choking; Violence; Dash of corruption and prey/predator; Deep throat; Facial. Fucking in a kitchen/public place. Also, just in case, toxic relationship and money talk (lol). 
Word count: 9,889 (such a nice number)
A/N: Oh, this has been a ride. This is my contribution to The Smut Pile Collab, hosted by the lovelies @present-mel​, @pleasantanathema​ and @linestrider​. I’m very excited to participate, since it is my first collab and they are my (home) first server. Big, huge, gigantic thanks to Lauren (my wife) for reading this over and beta-ing for me. <3
Well, Osamu fuckers unite! :insert elmo fire: (i’ve been on discord too much)
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Osamu gets up from his seat inside his small office, looking from the small window on his door inside the already closed restaurant lit only by the lights that come in through the windows, the time being well after closing. Shady deals are mostly done late at night, he thinks. Right as he’s leaving the office and closing the door behind him with a key, the movement outside catches his eye and Osamu turns just in time to watch as the black BMW sedan of the year quietly comes to a halt right in front of his store. He frowns, knowing who that means. He'd much rather deal with the soldier responsible for his loan initially than with you.
Two men emerge from the front doors of the car, one immediately heading for the passenger door while the driver checks the street; they exchange a small nod before the man on the side of the sidewalk opens the passenger door and when he does, he positions himself behind it and immediately out of the way. Osamu could be intrigued by the action if he didn't feel so represented by it - he, too, would prefer to always be out of your way.
There’s power in the way you move, ingrained in your body as you descend an expensive white heel onto the concrete beneath you on the sidewalk, the other following suit while you propel yourself out, holding the frame of the car for support. It’s late at night and the street is fairly dark, but your simple presence, clad in an impeccable white suit with a deep neckline showing immaculate skin, is enough to brighten the place. There’s an elegant, expensive-looking and equally unnecessary coat draped over your shoulders and your hair was flawlessly styled.
You draw attention as the color black absorbs light-- from all and everything. Maybe it is because of your soul, he muses.  
Once you were standing outside the car, your driver marched to the door of the onigiri restaurant, holding it open for you while you strode inside, heels clicking on the pavement, the sway of your hips something Osamu may think beautiful to watch if it weren’t you.
“Hello, Miya-san. Hope you have better news for me this week.” You state as cheerfully as you can, calmly entering the establishment in a glory of white. You shed your coat once you passed the door, the driver catching it while the second man seemed to survey the outside area a little more before entering.
"Hi." Osamu extends his hand with the brown envelope. But you go around him and walk to the counter, calmly sitting down on one of the high stools while absentmindedly looking around his small restaurant.
“I missed my lunch today, so I hope you don’t mind me grabbing a bite before I leave.” You don’t look at Osamu when he doesn’t move for his place behind the counter immediately.
“We’re closed.” He says and you turn around just momentarily, piercing eyes on his profile. One of your men is still by the door and the look he gives the twin is also very compelling. Osamu feels his teeth gritting against the pressure he makes to shut his tongue. "Sure."
One of the goons comes closer and takes the brown envelope from his hands, without you even looking back as the burly tattooed man sits in one of the booths and starts counting the money.
“So, how’s business? I’ve heard you had a hard time these last two months.” You try to make small talk while checking the menu over the counter, carefully done nails threading along the restaurant menu. You only press a long nail against what you want and slide it to him, the 18K diamonds on your small and discreet Cartier watch and matching trinity ring on your finger catching more of his attention than your watchful eyes. Your jewelry is discrete, tasteful, and still amounting enough to buy the whole building where the Onirigi’s shop is located. Osamu's throat moves around nothing in reflex.
"Isn’t it obvious?" He grumbles while working against the counter, starting once he cleans his hands on the sink. He’d like to say his eyes keep diverting to your neckline because of your shining jewelry.
"So rude, Miya." you chuckle. “And I’ve been nothing but nice to you. Didn’t you pay for your little plumbing problem with my money? Is it only dirty to you once I’m present?”
"I don’t like people like you." Osamu doesn’t beat around the bush. And once he’s done with this payment he’d be completely free of you anyway, he doesn’t feel the need to pretend.
“Like me? You mean kind? All I ever did was help you out in a time of need.”
Osamu’s snort is disrespectful. The big man by the door moves but a simple turn of your hand in the air has him standing back, carefully looking down on Osamu, but unmoving. The other’s still counting the money rather calmly, the booth he’s seated unseeable from the shop window.
“You see, disrespect won’t take you far.” You say offhand, your watchful eyes on Osamu’s every move but with no real worry. You don’t trust him, but you know he’s not stupid.
"I don’t plan on it." He answers you after a beat, finishing wrapping the Salmon onigiri, disposing it carefully on a plate, and depositing it in front of you, accompaniments arranged around. Osamu doesn't use the fact that he doesn't like you as an excuse for a half-ass job; he's not the type, which is refreshing. Is what you like about him.
“Get started on a few others. I trust your recommendations.”
Osamu chooses to work quietly, in silence. You, however, are happily chatting away at his high stool as if this is just another day of bullying patrons. Maybe, for you, it is.
“You work very diligently.” You observe, eyes trailing from his toned arms to his deft fingers diligently working on the rice ball. He’s fast and experienced, rolling the nori around the triangled shaped steamed rice after successfully filling it with whatever he chose. Osamu just grumbles out something, or tsk, even when the way you look at his fingers takes an unexpected appreciative turn. 
“Maybe I should have you working overtime more.” You muse when he finishes the new onigiris and carefully places them in front of you. Osamu eyes you nastily, clearly displeased at your comment, which makes your lips split in a bigger smile despite your teeth closing around the rice ball. Even so, you’re pleasantly surprised by their flavor. 
“See, this is why I like you, Osamu.” The man frowned at your loose use of his first name, the way it rolls off your tongue so nicely. “You always deliver good work.”
“It’s my job.” Osamu retorts, unamused. “I do it right even if it’s for…” He catches his tongue right in time, his eyes catching movement from the man seated down at one of the tables, almost biting his tongue in the process. “--people like you.” 
Osamu watches while the burly man with tattoos moves discreetly despite his size, bends down so his mouth can be on your ear level, and murmurs something to you that he doesn’t quite catch. Your steely eyes are momentarily looking down when they blink and fly back to his face, a deep, blank stare that makes Osamu’s brows furrow. His back becomes straighter, a gripping feeling in his gut that triggers his fight or flight. 
He presses the urge down - tells himself he doesn’t have anything to fear.
He’s looking down at you, but Osamu feels small under your steady glare. Which in reflex, after several years of being stupid in pair, makes him want to act up.
"Seems to me you forgot some money, Miya."
"What?" His shocked tone is harsh and his eyes dart between you to the two men behind you, looking as steady as his walls and just as broad. "I counted it twice, everythin’ I owe ya ‘s there." His accent comes out pretty hard when he’s agitated.
"You only have fifty thousand here."
“I owe ya fifty thousand.” Osamu deadpans, almost sneering. “What ’re ya sayin’?"
“No, Miya. Fifty thousand is what you owed me two weeks ago.”
"You gave me an extension." He argues, brows furrowed.
"Exactly. I never said anything about the interest.”
"You forgot the interest." You talk to him as if he’s a child, lips turning upwards at his confusion. Osamu has the gut feeling you’re enjoying every second of this. Every little moment of his deep discomfort. “You were informed about them when you accepted the loan, you know how they work. If you don’t pay on the due date, 10 percent interest each extra week you remain in debt.”
"Are you telling me I'm missin’ over 10K in interest rates?
"Yes." You say, smiling while tilting your head sideways, analytical. "Because you are."
“I'm paying you back,” Osamu grits through his clenched teeth, almost as if he’s willing it to be true, “Everything I owed ya is there. ”
"Not quite. You’re paying me back about--” You smile and press your lips in thinking, eyebrows furrowing while you calculate on your head the exact number.  “-- 82 percent of what you owe me.”
Osamu’s fists close, veins bulging while his heart picks up with the adrenaline rush of a fit of rage. Aggression flows on his body to the point where his entire frame trembles. His teeth are clenched, tightly forced together by his pressed jaw. His brain cannot reason beyond the need to vent that outrage, and with every second he spends looking at your pretty-faced indifference sitting in front of him at the counter, his outrage slowly merges into fury. Osamu stares back at your emotionless eyes, turns, and walks two strides before burying his fist in the nearest plaster wall, the pain grounding him, soothing his nerves. 
Pain is familiar -- what Osamu doesn’t like is to feel so deranged.
"Fuck!" He exclaims loudly but still controlled, turns his broad back to you, breathes deeply a few times, and then settles. You watch in delighted silence as he moves to the freezer, grabs an iced pack of random food, and puts on his busted knuckles, his eyes on the hole he left on the wall; The twin sighs audibly, then walks back while coldly regarding you and your two watchdogs who look over to him carefully, almost startled.
You, however, didn’t even flinch.
"So how much do I still have to give you?"
“I think the better question is: Can you pay?”
“I’ll figure it out.” Osamu grumbles out, his clenched jaw working over grinding teeth.
“That’s not how this works, Miya.” You tell him, your spine regally straight on the high seat as if it is your throne. Your lips move around the next word with malice. “When.”
“I--” Osamu stops to think for a moment, coldly calculating his financial situation. He has no way to withdraw money from the main branch to try and cover the losses of this branch, that would be simply stupid. There is no way for him to borrow money from Atsumu, who doesn’t know the concept of savings; Kita can not help him with such a great amount and he can’t recur to his poor parents. He also doesn’t want to resort to a bank at all, which doesn’t leave him many options. A new extension raises interests and he doesn't think he can do it beyond the amount he would need to add. Osamu's chest slowly fills with dread - he knows what’ll come if he doesn’t pay and he refuses to let his business become a Mafia parlor.
You watch Osamu slowly and quite meticulously calculate his options while engrossed in reasoning his dreadful situation; it’s thrilling, you almost can’t hide the contentment blossoming in your chest at his desperate situation. 
His expression shifts and turns sour, before slowly building back his blank façade but it’s too late, you already know his conditions and capacities - it’s your job to know. And you pride yourself in never making bets, just assuming calculated risks, so Osamu is right where you wanted him to be.
You do suspect the black-haired male is the same, that disinterested stare in his handsome face nothing short of sharp, his aloof behavior making every second of rilling Osamu up to this manifestation of discomfort all the more delightful. His only problem is that the man plays by rules you don’t. And what you want, you take.  
“I’ll need an extension for the rest.” He finally says, so absolutely angered it’s almost a curse. Even the hostility in his tone makes a shiver run down your spine, all the hairs on your arms standing on edge while your insides slowly melt, fed by the images in your brain.
“Really?” You playfully answer, faked surprise not made to convince anyone. Osamu seethes in place, labored breathing making his chest move up and down. “See, now I can’t help you out. I told you disrespect would only take you so far.” 
You get up from your seat, a show of touching your expensive black plump Louboutin on the ground. “I can’t let you out like this, not when you did such a show of being… rude.”
“What do you want.” Osamu almost spits at you once you’re rounding his counter, entering his space, closing on him. But he holds himself in place by pressing his nails hardly against the inside of his palms.
“First, some respect.” You sultrily say at him, much as a viper luring its prey. It rolls off your scarlet lips while you look up at him from your long lashes and perfect face. It makes Osamu want to wreck it.
“I don’t respect you.” He says in undertone since you’re close, sounding much like a hiss. 
“Doesn’t seem like a smart thing to say to someone to whom you owe so much.” You purse your lips, fake pout. “And you seem like a smart man, Miya. Or am I wrong?”
Osamu blinks, brows furrowing while he looks down at you, his mind working.
“Where are you going with this?” He eyes you warily, his eyebrows furrowing, his mind trying to gauge the target of your wicked intentions. “You want something.”
 You smile, pretty red lips stretching to show a beautiful line of white teeth and he’s surprised that the poison isn’t dripping. 
“See, I knew you were smart.”
“I’m not giving you my business.” Osamu hisses, like a cornered animal, but his instance shows he’s more prone to fight than flee. 
“Don’t want it.” You’re quick to tell him, innocence so out of place that it makes even clearer that you’re being honest. “I may need… services, though.” 
Osamu’s spine shoots straight once again, his eyes sharp boring into your face with cold disdain.
“I’m not laundering your money.” 
“Money launder, Miya? That’s a federal felony.” You lean back, supporting yourself on your forearms against the balcony, vigilant eyes zooming on him. “Are you saying I’m a criminal?” 
Osamu stays silent for the first time. There’s a predatory glint in your eyes that he understands as a warning, but that doesn’t stop him from upturning his brow and tilting his head in a small challenge. Osamu is appalled at what your upturning lips do to his guts, swallowing the saliva that pools in his mouth. He must be wrong in the fucking head to feel anything else than disgust in your sight, but even so, there’s no denying the way there’s a devilish pull around you, like the temptation of a capital sin.
“What I mean is… I have a specific service for you, personally. So you could pay me in...” Your tongue snaps against the roof of your mouth with a small noise, lips turning up in vile intention, “Different goods, per se.”
Osamu refuses to accept his train of thought, eyes pressing into slits while he watches you. His tone enunciates every word of his question. 
“What do you mean?” 
Your answering smile is sordid.
“You know what I mean Miya, we’ve just established you’re not stupid.”
“I’m starting ta’ think you are, though.”
Your laugh is loud, cheerful even. It makes him look at you as if you’re insane.
“Maybe.” You chuckle, retreating your arms back and straightening your posture on the tool, your neck tilting to the side. “But when I want something, I want it. So why deny myself that? I find the whole point of self-control to be so… pedestrian.” There’s this contempt in your tone at the word, mixing into trivial once your shoulders shrug your consideration for a whole chunk of what living in a society means. “Why hold myself to it if I’m above?” Osamu chooses to ignore that question.
“And what if I say no?” 
“You’re free to do what you want, I don’t own you.” Yet, you think, smiling. “Then again you still owe me 10k in interests and with your measly weekly 5k profit and the increased interest percentage with the second extension, we know what’ll happen to you…  And I’d hate for that to happen to you.”
The silence is heavy and acidic, burning on him. And you let the seconds pass, relishing in the way he seems to grow aggravated, jaw overworking around nothing to bite, hands in fists by his side. 
Oh, you’re close to defiling the pristine white of your designer clothes, the feeling brewing inside you threatening to spill between your thighs. Osamu looks absolutely delicious while being so emotional. 
You can see the gears turning inside his pretty dark-haired head, his eyes looking around and back at you, threading down your face, to your neck to the plunging neckline of your suit - you elongate your body while he watches, pleased to have his eyes on you, especially when they're burning with unattended violence and aggression. 
Osamu’s always so detached from the events happening around him, so unshakable in that aura of apathetic tranquility that it has caused you to develop an almost macabre interest in making him desperate. And now you are continually enjoying the result, the awakening of the flames that you always knew existed inside the small business owner.
 A few minutes pass while you’re just content to watch, the knot in your stomach growing tighter as you appreciate the size of his shoulders, the strength hidden in the strong biceps, the broad, defined torso that you know exists under that simple black outfit simply by gut feeling alone. You are tempted to ask him to turn around so that you can also enjoy his backside.
“Ok.” He says in a breath that seems more like it was ripped out of his chest. Like a dead man last world. You like this analysis. But of course, he can’t have it so easy.
“I’m sorry, I didn’t hear. Did you say anything?”
Osamu purses his lips in discomfort, almost bites his tongue in the process of not telling you to go to hell.
 “I said,” he entones again, though his disdain is showing. “Ok”
“Ok, what?” You press. Oh, the way how his veins bulge on his forearms when his nails press on his palms have your hairs standing on end. You blink at him with a smile, all too pleased with yourself.
“Ok, I’ll do it.” Osamu squeezes out, brows furrowed in discovering your intentions. You’re leering with wicked prowess. 
“I don’t think that's how you say it, Miya.” Your brows go up in the tiniest indication of irritation. Your voice is calculated, though unable to hide the elation.
“Ok… Miss. I’ll do anything you want.” The words come out of his mouth sounding nothing like submission and much like he just cursed your whole generation, teeth grinding. Still, it makes you smile. You don’t want to break his spirit -- that’s why you chose him.
“That’s what I like to hear.” You say, pushing yourself out from the counter where you supported yourself. Coat long forgotten on top of it, you cross your arms in front of your breasts, knowing exactly how you look and very pleased at the way his eyes ever so slightly thread down your plunging neckline. “But not so fast. I didn’t tell you I’d accept it-”
“Ya just--” Osamu almost explodes, the arms he holded closed in front of him being thrown in the air as if he’d be ready to grab you. You just turn a hand up and reels at how he actually shuts up right after.
“I just told you, you could pay me in services.” You continue, one step closer to him in your expensive shoes, plump red lips dripping wicked intent. 
“But,” You start, closer to him enough that your breath is touching his heated skin and you can smell the sweat his aggression produced, your mouth salivating at the thought of tasting it on his skin. 
Your finger rests on his chest and you thread it up while speaking, looking him in the eyes, so pleased at finding so much life in his usual dead stare, “I don’t know if you’re good enough for the job yet.” 
Osamu stares back at you, hands in fists forcibly stuck next to his body, feeling the way your hot breath trails on his jaw and hating himself for what it brews in his insides. 
You stretch up in your heels, mouth dangerously close to his, which rests ajar to let his breathing out, enough that he can taste your mint breath on his tongue. 
“I think I may need a little…”  Your eyes thread down to his mouth and then back to his eyes while you speak your next words, “--taste, you know?”
Osamu flexes his fingers, swallows dry around his closed throat, stares at your face -- so close the downright devilish smile on your red lips seems to narrow his field-view -- and he blinks. 
The Miya thinks how he wants to wipe that smile off your sinful lips. How he wants to have you trembling, unattended, and disheveled. He thinks about you begging with his name on your tongue, for a release that he’ll keep denying at his disposition. Osamu thinks about leaving you sore and marked, thinks about wrapping his hands around your neck to watch as you struggle, turning purple, life evading you while he fucks you; consider this may be the only way he’d ever had the opportunity to get even close to a payback. 
Osamu wants you to experience mind-numbing pleasure you’d never before, uniquelly brought by him… and suffer through the rest of your fucking disgraceful life without being able to taste it again once he’s done paying his debt. Because Osamu swears on his fucking name and whole life, he’ll never give it to you again.
He can see your future already and in it you’re fucked - both by him and for him, while he’s the one who gets away. The twin wonders if you ever lost anything like this in your life, can feel himself growing hard at being the one to make you cry. 
“Sure.” Osamu smiles, lopsided, the devil himself being safer than him. “I’ll give ya the taste ya deserve.” 
Your eyes press slightly closer in mistrust, the wicked intention pouring from his body so close to yours impossible to miss. Either way, it's your win; that’s exactly what you’ve been bargaining for, despite your game being rigged from the start. 
You bring your face close to his as if you were going to kiss him and you are delighted when his eyes go down, although not completely closed, his pupils focusing on your lips. 
You smile and retreat, turning to your men still positioned exactly where you left them, behind the bench where you were sitting previously. They remain so observant and sharp as ever, despite looking more like gargoyles than men.
“I’ll need a moment.” You tell them in a serious tone, calm. They both look at you for a second and nod, their stances changing very little despite it. You turn back to him but walk inside his establishment as if you own the place, pushing through the doors that lead to the back and inside his small, equipped kitchen. Osamu follows in silence, briefly wondering if he’d be able to snatch a knife and bury it in your chest. 
There’s not much outside cooking paraphernalia, with two big counters and taller than normal table in the center. You stop right in front of it, your hand threading over it for a moment. 
“That’ll do.” You say while you turn around to look at him. You look so strikingly bright in the middle of his rather normal kitchen, clad in both lavish clothes and unblemished skin; he wants so much to be able to say your sight doesn’t thrill him -- but he can’t lie to himself. 
But then you pointedly eye him and then the ground in front of you, “Kneel.”
Osamu considers his previous thought about burying a knife deep in your chest but walks, stiff, to where you indicated. He kneels with even less disposition than when he walked towards you, the descent slow until the ground’s hard tile is registered against his knee. He makes a point of looking into your eyes as he lowers, hatred overflowing in waves that seem to give you a sick satisfaction, your eyes becoming slightly out of focus.
The Miya’s about to ask what you’d want him to do next, like pledge himself or some shit, when your hands move to the hidden zipper on the side of your impeccable white pants. 
It drops to the floor in one go, displaying the graceful planes of your hips, appeasing spanse of flesh, a small triangle of silk hiding your most private parts. Saliva pools in Osamu’s mouth at the sight, his teeth pressing against one another to avoid betrayal. He’s still unsure of what’s his next step until your heel digs on his shoulder painfully, using him as leverage to prop yourself up on the high table. 
His eyes snap to yours while he bite his tongue to not curse you out loud.  There’s a gun on top of his head that is a big warning for Osamu to behave -- not that he’d have the chance to escape with the watchdogs outside his only exit. If he had, you could be dead already. 
Your suit threads up when you move up and slide on the table, the white silk panties peeking in between your open thighs. You move your beretta calmly off his face and thread it slightly, almost fondly, over your naked thigh. 
You make a small show of removing your finger from the trigger and depositing it far on the table, enough to be out of his reach and almost yours too. You look back at him once you’re empty handed and just so open right there on the table for him. 
“Behave, Osamu. You know you wouldn’t make it very far.”
Osamu grits his teeth but nods, your heel still supported on his shoulder but not digging on his skin anymore. You lay slightly back against his tabletop, forearms resting on the surface carefully. Dressed in a white, stylish suit like the last trend, the skin in between so bright it feels like a taunt, the curves of your breasts so ripe he wants to taste, the closed lapels looking like his own pathway to sin. He can feel his blood boiling, aggression throbbing, and he wants to paint you in red.
“Well then,” You start, happily above him, spread like a meal, “Show me if you’re good enough to pay your debt. Consider this your warrant.”
“Don’t worry.” Osamu drawls out with dripping distaste, his hand slowly, almost bored, threading up from your ankle to your knees. “I’ll fuck ya like you want it. Within an inch of your life.”
His hands lock on the back of your knees and he parts them forcefully, while you leave a yelp followed by laughter, your head thrown back with glee. 
You smell of flowers and spice, so expensive he was surprised that you weren’t dripping fucking gold. His palms slide through the back of your thigh and the skin under his fingertips is soft and firm, all shapes of heaven despite being in sole service of the devil. 
Osamu starts slowly, the table leaving you open just at the height of his neck while he’s kneeled on the ground, at the perfect height. His thumb presses on your skin while he holds one of your legs up, brings his lips to your knee. There’s a welcoming stain on your panties, and he scoffs at you despite the way his cock responds on his trousers. 
“I haven’t even started and you’re already wet?” The way you smile at him is both infuriating and bewitching. 
“What? Didn’t you enjoy our little foreplay earlier?” You tease him, plump lips locked under a row of teeth with mirth. His skin feels prickling and Osamu decides he needs more room, roughly pushing on your thighs until he can fit between them with room to spare.
It’s not fair, how good you feel, the delicious smell of your skin, the way your taunt alights him with fire in his veins. 
Osamu knows it’s bait -- and he’s willingly falling for it.
When his lips start to thread on the inner part of your knee and up, the twin does it with the intention to mark; he sucks instead of kissing, licks instead of caressing, and bites once he finds the plush meat of your inner thighs.
It stings and you let the smallest of sounds, but Osamu feels it in his gut, brings his hot tongue to soothe over it, bask in the way you tremble under his fingertips just enough for him to sink his teeth and revel in the pain on your groan. 
His nose treads along the furthest expanse of the joining of your thighs, touches the silk of your expensive panties, senses the way you tense and watches while your pussy trembles, even while still covered by fabric.
He considers holding back his tongue, but Osamu has never been the type to be held back by the threat of punishment. And you’ve shown to clearly enjoy his fiery side.
“Such an eager pussy right here, isn't it?” He threads his nose against the wet patch in the silk, carefully breathes against the covered lips. Osamu lets one of his shoulders bear one leg and brings his thumb to pass over the growing wet patch. “Sticky.” He presses it from the wetness to the place where your clit should be, watches as you respond to his touch with aborted movement. “Such a slut.” It’s supposed to be degrading, but there’s a hint of appreciation in his words that isn’t lost on you. “Is this all it takes for my debt? It’ll be finished in a second then.”
Your mouth opens to retort but closes in time to withhold a moan before it falls through your lips. His thumb’s pressing against your clit in tight circles while the index of his other hand threads over your covered cunt. Turns out Osamu has moves to back up the big talk. 
He’s methodical, clearly good and deft with his fingers, controlled pressure applied in a way that has you writhing on the table despite your intention to make this hard on him. Your desire to make him work for it, apparently, is no match for his. 
Osamu presses the tips of his fingers on your clothed entrance, enough force that it barely breaks inside you but the teasing has you churning on the table for him, legs trying to part beyond limits, body arching where it’s been relegated. Your chest feels hot and heavy despite the little clothing. You’re hoping for the moment where he’ll tease the hard nipples pressing against the flimsy lace of your bralet and the inside of your suit with the same intensity he’s depositing on your cunt.
Osamu, on the other hand, has no rush. You did this, gave this opportunity for him to wreck you, and he plans on enjoying it to the bitter end. He’s fairly surprised at how responsive you are, how quickly you melt for him, how vocal you can be despite doing little more than grunts and sighs. A thought flashes through his mind when he feels a renewed wave of wetness blossom against the fabric where his fingers are pressing, his lips turning in a self-satisfied smirk.
“Have you been so desperate for a good cock you’ve resorted to blackmail?” Your eyes snap open at his voice, a warm wave of something that you refuse to believe in being embarrassment depositing in your cheekbones. Osamu’s fingers prod harder against your entrance, fingers spreading against the wet fabric to your outer lips while his thumb keeps drawing endless circles around your clit. “Tsk, what a dirty move from an even dirtier slut.” 
He slaps your clit once, then twice, his bulking frame preventing you from closing your legs against the sudden pain. Your body trembles on unsteady forearms. You choke on a breath and then release a moan, the sound outrageous to Osamu even as his cock throbs from it. 
“Maybe I’ll give ya what you want.” The Miya teases, his voice sounding even despite the turmoil inside him. You look up at him with such eyes he could fool himself into thinking he wanted this. 
His fingers teether on the edge of your underwear, rough fingertips just daring to cross into the emanating heat. Your hips twitch, the emptiness inside you accentuated by your muscles clenching around nothing, desire pouring out against the prodding fingertips. Osamu snorts, throws you a hard stare that is equal parts fire and contempt. 
“You’re so wet. Are you enjoying this that much?” It drips acidic from his tongue against your neck, after he bends himself over you. From so close, Osamu’s warm breath is the same as a caress, his tongue teasing you with the way it threads over his lips but doesn't extend the courtesy to your skin. “You’re rather easy to rile up, hah? Or is it that you enjoyed playin’ with me before?” His teeth flash white above your head and you swallow around the desire of having them plunging on your skin. “How was it ya said? Foreplay, hah?”
You feel weirdly wound up inside your own skin, as if there’s not enough space and still a growing void inside you waiting for him to fill. It’s insane, it’s delicious, and a loud moan breaches your throat when Osamu plunges two fingers inside you without warning. 
Your body arches in such a curve your breasts press against his chest, the relieving brush too shallow to register in your brain when you’re hyper fixated on the sensation brewing inside you. 
It doesn’t even sting, instead you feel like your hunger escalates, fed by such little push that your want becomes need and for the first time in forever you actually consider asking for something. 
Your mouth opens, and Osamu snickers. “What?” He presses his thumb over your clit fast, relinquishes in the way you groan, feels the way your insides beg him to keep going. 
Still not enough though. He wants it ruined for you. 
“Maybe I’ll just make you cum on my fingers right here.” He spreads, scissor and twists them inside you, enjoying the feeling of your tight walls clenching around him at his every move. Osamu’s skin feels on fire, body overheating, and the way your lips turn up to reveal a line of white teeth in glee has his gut twisting. 
“You have a pretty loose tongue for such a quiet guy.” You look at him with semi-closed eyes, the victorious smile of the cat who got the mouse. “Maybe you like me more than you thoug--ahhhhh!”
Osamu shoves and prods around your insides for that special place even demons like you have and his assault is nothing short of merciless. Your eyes snap open at the force of his ramming, eyebrows furrowing at the way your pleasure seems to have forgone climb to skyrocket instead. Osamu watches in begrudging enchantment while your lips fall open to suck air into your breathless lungs and your eyes grow unfocussed, shoulders falling against the table so your hands can come to hold his arms but for what he doubts even you know. 
He’s not stopping. Until he does. 
You let out a noise like a wounded animal, tethering on the edge of mind numbing pleasure he won’t give you and when your body trembles from exertion of a denied orgasm instead of bliss, Osamu’s chest swells in pride.
“Whydidyoustop?” You lament in one breath, eyes are blinking back into focus, sweat and - oh he hopes those are tears - droplets dripping from the corner of your eyes while you turn to press your face on the cold metal surface of the table. “I was so close!” This time you rage, nails pressing against his skin enough to hurt.
“Wadidya mean?” Osamu tilts his head sideways, patronizing. “You didn’t ask for it. I’m just doing what you told me: being respectful.”
You laugh, still breathless, and turn to him in disbelief. “Fucker.”
“Not yet,” He corrects you, nuzzling his hips on your thighs. “Maybe if you ask nicely enough.”
Osamu retreats while you regulate your breath, letting your useless legs fall limp while both of his hands come to help your panties down, marveling at the way they’re peeled off your wet pussy lips. His cock aches and demands, but he’s used to reining in his dick. And he’s just started, anyway.
The Miya pushes you forward on the table, opening your legs wide like a treat. Your pussy is glistening, rhythmically calling for something to fill it while you leak. He plunges a finger back inside to watch you tremble, stimulation enough to make your eyes fall closed, long black lashes against beautiful sweaty skin. 
“Look at this.” Osamu plunges a second finger inside, opening them wide enough to sting. “What a desperate whore.” 
Your mind is swirling in urge, but you refuse to spill the words on your tongue. It would give you what you want, but at what cost? Osamu looks positively ferocious above you, dark eyes focused on your every move; it sends shivers through your spine, your body trembling and blossoming for him once again. You’re in your personal heaven, in company of the devil himself.
Osamu kneels again in front of your open legs, hook one on his shoulder while he holds the other thigh forcefully up with a grip so hard your muscle aches under his fingers. But you don’t care, in fact  you sigh “more” for him right as his breath teases your folds.
“No.” He tells you, two fingers pumping at leisure. His tongue slurps at your inner thigh, teeth closing in a bite with nothing to sooth. 
“Fuck.” You breathe out in a groan and his smirk is pronounced against your skin. 
Osamu, as you’re learning, is a tease.
His moves are soft, lacking in everything but aim; his tongue moves along the sensitive parts of your body you’ve never really cared for, like the plush flesh of your thighs, underside of your ass, the juncture of your groin. He has yet to taste you but you feel wounded, body constricted under weak ministrations, feather-like teases. It sinks with a piercing revelation that you could cum like this -- in an unfulfilled manner with not-good-enough touches that somehow have made your body feel raw like an exposed nerve in which the minimum touch would be enough to warrant waves of pleasure.
When his tongue comes to thread along your slit slowly, nose caressing along his way, your body clenches and threatens to spasm around unmoving fingers. You’re so close, so close, your body is ready to burst, fraying at the seams of a control you’re not using, your hands flying to try and find your clit at the same time Osamu’s eyes flash and he holds it, presses it forcefully against your belly while his lips slurp at your folds, circle your clit, but it’s so soft, it’s fucking unfair.
“Goddammit, Osamu!” You scream, enraged at the way your second orgasm flies away from you as his fingers leave your quivering hole, his mouth doing nothing more than lap at your overflowing juices with no real worry, no urgency.
“Oh, look at that.” The Miya smirks, drawing back up to look at your disheveled state; flustered, sweating, dripping and unattended. “You wanted a taste.” His hand comes back to your cunt, fingers thread along puffy lips. “I’m giving it to you.”
“You bastard.” His fingers leave your heat just to plunge inside again, a loud gushing sound following it. “Shit.” You sigh while falling back, and Osamu feels his cock throb once more at how breathless you sound. 
Your mind works around the feeling of being spread so far you feel as if you’re paper thin. Your mind goes rushing in its last attempt at working. Osamu looks self-satisfied, almost content, so you know where to hit. You want it, so you find a way to have it. 
“Oh, poor Miya--” You coo at him with a hoarse voice in glazed eyes, but the condescending tone is clear as day. “Are you trying to hurt me?” You plant a hand on his black hair, pulling at it enough to hurt.  “‘Cause I like pain.”
Fire explodes in his eyes and you tighten around his fingers in response, but other than his frown, Osamu remains calm. 
He slams three fingers inside before you can mouth any new words, smirks down at you with mischief when you tremble and bite your lips to hold the noises in, eyes falling back closed to hide the way they turn inside your skull. His other hand is holding your thigh forcefully open once again and his palm presses with hurtful intention, fingertips buried in your flesh so hard his digitals may mark you for days.
“Let you cum on my fingers and nothing else, is that going to be enough for you?” Osamu snarls against your ear, hot breath tickling your jaw. His hips hold you open to his assault at your pussy and his hand abandons your thigh to glide over your body and close around your throat. 
Osamu squeezes hard.
“Then again I could ruin your orgasm for the third time.” He bends over you, his lips right in front of your sight; eyes looking down at you with such fire you almost wonder if they’re the cause for the burn in your lungs. “Leave you writhing on the table, empty, until you learn to have a little respect.” 
Your lips spread in a smile almost maniacal, goosebumps rising on your skin as if you’re electrified. This is what you’ve wanted all along -- passion, fearless assault of words, electrifying pleasure; and also, the detachment, the murderous intent, all merging together in one perfect Osamu Miya. Shit, you think to yourself, at this hate you may actually come from his teasing alone.
“You talk too much for someone who didn't make me cum yet.” You pour gasoline into his fire. 
Osamu pulls you up by the lapels of your suit, button flying open at the hastiness, your breasts protected by such a flimsy piece of lace you’re surprised it doesn’t turn to ash at his stare. Your hard nipples mark the white bralet, the air feeling cold at how hot they are. 
A hand covered in your juices closes on your cheeks, forcefully opening your lips at the threat of pain, his fingers with lingering heat from your insides.
“Such a big mouth, should I shut you up?” Osamu asks you, eyes boring on yours. The plea is on the point of your tongue as if he’d shoved his hand inside you to yank it himself, and it tips out when his dark eyes steal one single snippet of your smeared red lips open by his hands.
“Fuck me.” 
He nods negatively, presses hard enough that your teeth could cut your inner cheeks. He relents and your tongue grazes your lips, moistening them for his eyes.  
Osamu smiles, a tilt of his lips up but so earnestly you’re almost hopeful, then: “No.” 
Even if as he says it, it’s a lie. He knows he’ll fuck you, but right now he’s enjoying the build-up, toying with you as if you’re his plaything and not the opposite. You growl and curse, head falling back when he palms at your covered breasts, push the lace up, hears the way it strains and threatens to rip. 
It’s oddly relatable -- Osamu also feels taut, stretched around a fleeting control that he feels will slip with one dip inside you. His past sexual experiences involved partners who he cherished and few one-night stands which, for the small time his dick was inside them, he was mindful and cared for their pleasure. 
Right now, while he pinches and palm at your body, he has not a single worry about your pleasure and all the concern about his. This is for him. He bends his head over your bosom, sucks a nipple inside the hot cave of his mouth and bites. As his cock twitches and aches inside his trousers, he relishes in the pained noises you leave, even when they’re marked by breathless arousal.
“You sure are fucked up. Look how much you’re enjoying this.” His fingers force the howl of your cheeks, feeling your teeth nicking the insides of your mouth even through layers of flesh. There’s an infuriating elation in your expression, and Osamu retaliates by sucking harshly on your skin, teeth finding soft places to close on.
You moan loudly and his hand slides back onto your throat in the motion. Your hand shots up from the table to find his hard dick and your laugh makes his blood boil. “Clearly I’m not the only one.”
His heartbeat spikes at the words, even if Osamu knows it. The twin pulls the suit jacket half-down your arms and slams your body on the slight cold surface of the metal table, noise sounding thunderous but still no one comes after you. 
Your skin erupts in goosebumps at the aggression, blood flying so fast through your heart you feel lightheaded. You’re about to spit some more fire into Osamu when two of his fingers gag you, other hand descending on your ass with such force and so unexpectedly your legs give out, dangling from the table as if you’re a ragdoll.
Something remarkably close to a whine turning sob slides through your throat and dies at Osamu’s fingers, just as something big and hot surges over your ass cheeks. Something coils on your chest, the emotion makes your eyes water and for a moment you blink it away, thanking the new position doesn’t let Osamu catch that. 
Too soon. Osamu pulls your head back as his hand peels the globes of your ass apart and before you can breathe, the little air inside you is being knocked out with one thrust of Osamu’s hip.
He forces his dick inside you, tearing you open as your walls make way for his aggression, wetness dripping while Osamu fills you to the hilt, because yes, that's what you want. You want his hate, his passion, you want Osamu to tear you apart while you enjoy every second of it.
“‘Samu!” His name is on your lips as your eyes roll back, whole body tensing until you’re falling, just like that. 
Then he retreats. “Fuck! Fuck no!” This time it’s a wail, a sob as your third orgasm turns to ashes, your insides trembling with nothing to hold, empty and meager pleasure. 
“Wha--Cummin’ already? Nope.” The twin laughs above you, hands tilting your head painfully back. “So embarrassing.” Osamu mocks you and you swear you can feel a renewed wave of cream slide down your insides to greet the head of his cock, nudging along your swollen lips. Your tongue feels so heavy on your mouth, parched and breathless all at once, no way out but silence. 
“You are disgusting, you know that? Such a greedy fucking pussy doesn’t deserve to be this tight.” 
Your laugh turns into a deep moan when Osamu hits deep inside you. “God yes.” You twist one hand out of the suit’s sleeve just to pull him by the hem of his blouse, your nails digging against the skin of his neck, blooming red yelts. “Talk shit to me Osamu. I know you have better lines.”
“Fuck you.” The twin spits, his hips pistoning harder against yours until he just stops the motion, leaves you open and gapping for him to fill you again. “Of course a pig like ya has the hots for humiliation. Look at that, the slut’s pussy squeezing around my dick because she thinks I'm doing this for her pleasure.” His hand comes down on the other side of your ass, where he hasn't hit yet. It stings, but the way his palm massages and grabs at it before almost soothes the burn. “Disgusting sluts don’t get to say anything, not even begging will get you what you want. I decide what you get."
You look back from your shoulder to see his cock is standing proud and angry, swollen head shining red and dripping translucent white, as if he hadn't been wet from your juices before. Osamu’s big, especially thick and he presses inside you again without giving you time to adjust, unforgiving pace right from the start.
You curse at the way one of your hands keeps locked behind you by your suit, your nails digging on your own skin without anything else to find purchase on; the other tries to grab onto Osamu to no avail, falling on the table to help support yourself at the strength of his pounding.  Your mouth is open, divided between sucking breaths and puffs of air. Osamu’s hand has since found purchase in your neck, the way he forces it back painful, the pressure on your throat growing and ceasing as he wishes. 
Still, you can’t think. Your mind is lost in a sea of searing pleasure, your nipples pressed against the metal surface as Osamu finally fucks you as you’ve been dreaming. No, maybe even better. The past men you’ve fucked had all been afraid of hurting you, careful with retaliation. As Osamu fists your hair and forcefully presses you against the table; you think you may be having a religious experience. Your eyes water from the force of his manhandling, tears spilling while you left unbelievable noises fall from your lips. You want to scream and laugh, a hot sensation spreading from your fingertips to your core. 
The wave of the orgasm is forming quickly, your toes curling against the insides of your Louboutins enough to hurt, the incessant pounding of Osamu’s hips against your ass sounding downright pornographic. As the peak approaches, doubt gnaws at your chest for the first time in forever. 
The simple thought of Osamu robbing you of your orgasm this time is enough to make your whole body tremble and recoil, your mind too slow to catch on to his intentions. You consider biting your tongue to hold the plea in, but as you bolt into mind-blowing pleasure you’ve never even imagined before, the alternative feels like dying.
You’re tethering the edge and you feel Osamu pressing harder against you, and you break. “Please!” You cry out, “Pleasepleaseplease, don’t stop.” His movements slow down and halt, and the hand on your ass slides around you, a single finger taps repeatedly on your swollen clit. 
“Say it.” He all but howls at your ear, bites on it for good measure.
“Please, ‘samu, let me fucking cum!” You beg but you’re already falling over, whole body shuddering just from the way he nudges his hips against your ass and taps on your sensitive bundle of nerves. Panic surges in between your pleasure that he’ll ruin this one when he retreats from your quivering insides, but Osamu rams back inside you with such power that your head rattles, hips hurting from the impetus of his fucking. 
Sound rings in your ear while you drown in the thunderous waves of your pleasure for what feels like forever. It flows and flows and flows to a point you can’t tell if you’re seeing black or just closed your eyes. 
Osamu watches, enthralled, how you go completely boneless under him. Your insides have stopped squeezing him tight but his hard, aching cock still throbs inside your heat. It’s honestly unbelievable how tight you feel around him, how fantastic he feels buried balls deep inside your walls. He had to stop trying to fuck you through your orgasm in worry he’d may cum. Poison and pleasure curl in his chest at the thought. Osamu feels like spanking you, choking you, to punish you for this undeserving heaven you have between your thighs.  
But he’s not done yet.
Osamu retreats, the slide of his cock leaving your delicious walls -- cold air from outside so less welcoming -- and you sag on the table. He pulls you up on unsteady legs and smirks, proud. Your bare feet touch the ground and Osamu spins you around, swallowing on a tight throat after one look at your disheveled blissful state, but then he retreats and let’s you collapse to the ground.
The image of your legs sliding open on the cold tiled floor, unsteady hands finding purchase to hold your torso up while your head looks up at him in outrage is one he sears in his mind, a wicked satisfaction sliding over his spine at the sight alone. The wreck of you at his feet, by his hands, nothing short of perfect. 
His cock throbs and pulses in front of your eyes, dragging your attention and Osamu steps closer, poses one hand on the top of your head, ruins the rest of your styled hair by dragging fingertips in it. 
 You’re still lightheaded, shockwaves making you twitch on the cold floor and Osamu is elated at how wrecked you look, makeup smeared, hair disheveled, body holded up by unsteady arms. Your lips are open, between breathless pulls of air and heavy exhales, but Osamu doesn't care, hands forcefully tugging your hair back and angling your mouth at his swelled cockhead. He counts as a win that you don’t bite him, your tongue threading flat on the underside of his length as he buries himself on your throat. 
There’s resistance, so the Miya retreats, forcing it back a few other times until it finally slides a few inches more inside. While he maintains the force over your hair, his other hand engulfs your chin, thumb breaching your lips to hold your mouth open despite the fact you don’t make any move to close it. 
It feels his chest with acidic bitterness that you welcome his aggression, glazed, tearful eyes looking up at him as if the fact he’s using you as little more than a cocksleeve is the brightest part of your day. Still, Osamu’s skin feels close to tearing under the sheer amount of pleasure flooding his insides. His hairs are standing on end, heart beating so fast his lungs burn, every muscle on his body tensed at his mindless pursuit of his high. He buries his cock deep inside the tight space of your throat, your gurgles and groaning enhancing his sensation. It looks painful to you to hold him inside, tears ending your makeup, face turning red at the lack of air. He closes both hands behind your head, making you nuzzle his pelvis even as your nails close on his thighs threatening to break skin.
He retreats to let you breathe just as your eyes go unfocused, feels something squeezing inside as you cough and wheezes and his throat squeezes a large gulp of air when you look up at him, tongue hanging out with a wide-open mouth just offered for him.
Osamu feels like hurting you at how good you are, infuriatingly obedient and willing to be at the end of his aggression. So he buries himself back inside at one go, both hands holding your head for him. There’s too much chaos inside of him, so he decides to pour some out through words.
“You like being used like this, huh? Like little more than a fucking cocksleeve for me.”
“What is it? Does being in power make you this needy? Does being wrecked make you feel this good?” Your groan makes your throat tighter around him, your eyes rolling back from his fucking and degradation.
It’s unfair, infuriatingly so, that this might be the most unbelievable great sex he ever had. 
Osamu can’t hold back much longer, everything feeling just too good, his skin burning at the stretch of the tourbillion of emotions inside his chest, the captivating sight of tears dropping from your jaw and coating your long lashes as your face darkens by the lack of air, swollen lips stretched beyond capacity around his cock while you willingly let him go harder, faster, into your tight throat. There’s a warm sensation flowing from his limbs to his spine, melting his bones and weighing on his balls until it spreads over Osamu’s whole being.
He pulls back from your throat in time but presses his hands on your jaw and hair to keep you up and open as he coats your wrecked face with hot spurts of cum -- the final touch to the perfection of your wrecked image at his feet.
It lands haphazardly over your lips and even your eyelashes, tear-stained mess of a face marked by his essence. Osamu tells himself he could never feel anything towards you, but for a second there’s a hint of territorial pride at how you look -- and how it is all his doing. The twin is still swimming in searing pleasure as you lick over your lips, hands almost fondly landing over his as if you're assuring him that he can let go.
He does, trying to step back and slowly descending onto the ground when his knees give out. His eyes are glued to how his cum is dripping from your chin onto your chest, how you bring your fingers to sweep over it and end it by cleaning the digits with your tongue. If Osamu’s cock wasn’t so spent, he’s sure it’d swell right back up at the sight alone.
“Can’t say what’s better,” your hoarse voice is barely above a murmur, “the taste or the feeling.”
As you’re standing on unsteady legs and already fixing yourself while he sits on the floor questioning his life choices, Osamu feels as if he’d made a deal with the devil, and you’ll be coming back to collect his soul.
“Seems like the start of a nice partnership, doesn’t it?” 
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latte-fairytaekwoon · 3 years
𝐌𝐚𝐟𝐢𝐚! 𝐀𝐭𝐞𝐞𝐳: 𝐓𝐡𝐞𝐲 𝐑𝐞𝐚𝐥𝐢𝐳𝐞 𝐓𝐡𝐞𝐲 𝐂𝐚𝐧'𝐭 𝐋𝐢𝐯𝐞 𝐖𝐢𝐭𝐡𝐨𝐮𝐭 𝐘𝐨𝐮
Disclaimer: In no way am I condoning, encouraging, justifying, nor promoting mafia behavior or lifestyle. This is all a work of fiction and not meant to represent real life scenarios.
「𝐾𝑖𝑚 𝐻𝑜𝑛𝑔𝑗𝑜𝑜𝑛𝑔」
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You groaned as the doorbell rang incessantly. You weren't in the mood or spirits to talk to anyone. Getting up, you thought it'd be best to just tell whoever it was to leave you alone. But you couldn't do that when you saw who it was at the door.
"Hongjoong...?" You asked in disbelief.
"Hey Y/N..." He replied, nervously, tugging at the sleeves of his oversized sweater.
You certainly weren't expecting to see him there, at your house, especially not after your guys' breakup 1 week ago. It still hurt you and not wanting to cry in front of him, you began to close the door.
"Wait! Don't Y/N! I need to talk to you!" Hongjoong exclaimed as his hands tried to keep you from locking him out.
"Well I don't! I don't want to talk to or even see you Kim Hongjoong!"
Your efforts weren't enough as he pushed himself inside your house.
"Get out Hongjoong!" You demanded, though the tremor in your voice probably didn't sound too convincing.
"Not until you hear what I have to say." Hongjoong begged.
"I think I heard what I needed to hear last time, I don't need you to repeat yourself Hongjoong. I don't need you!" You shouted as tears finally poured down your face.
Hongjoong immediately pulled you close to hug you, but you kept trying to shove him off.
"No! Don't touch me! I don't want to see you! I don't need you in my life! And I don't need you repeating that this relationship would get nowhere! I don't need someone who isn't going to commit or take things seriously after so many years and expect me to be fine with it! I don't deserve that!" You cried.
"You're right Y/N. You're absolutely right. You don't deserve that, you deserve that at all. You deserve someone whose going to take care of you, protect you at all costs and love them indefinitely....."
Hongjoong sighed.
"And I was a fucking idiot for not stepping up to do that sooner for you..."
Your hands covered your mouth in shock as he got down on one knee and pulled out a velvet red box from his pants.
"This isn't at all how I wanted to ask you this....but I was desperate and I wanted you back in my life........not as my girlfriend..."
He looked up at you with adoring eyes.
"But as my wife..."
He opened the box to reveal a huge diamond ring with a rose gold band.
"So L/N Y/N.....would you marry me?"
「𝑃𝑎𝑟𝑘 𝑆𝑒𝑜𝑛𝑔ℎ𝑤𝑎」
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You felt utterly humiliated and self conscious. You knew for a long time that Seonghwa's parents never liked you, but now they seemed determined to get rid of you.
Your face fell the moment a pretty looking girl came up and greeted Seonghwa, and she obviously had a big effect on him, given how he straightened up when he saw her. You tilted your head trying to think who was she, when the question was answered by none other than Seonghwa's mom:
"That's my son's former fiancee." She said behind you, the malice in her voice more than visibly to you.
Your heart dropped at her words, getting worried and anxious the more they interacted together.
"Such a beautiful, elegant, refined and classy lady......all the things you'll never be." She sneered at you before walking away.
You bit your tongue, trying to contain the rage inside of you, refusing to sink to the witch's level and retaliate in any way. You simply swallowed the lump in your throat and decided to walk out of the house, and out of Seonghwa's life if you needed to.
Unbeknownst to you, Seonghwa had actually heard everything and was less than pleased when his mom came over to him and his ex. Before she could even say anything, he bursted out:
"Let that be the last time I hear you disrespect my girlfriend that way mother. I think I've put up a enough of your bullshit, but this..."
He didn't hesitate to gesture to the incredulous looking girl next to him.
"This is the last straw."
Seonghwa began walking away, refusing to stay there any longer. He'd much rather go look for you, he knew you were probably feeling bad at this moment and needed him.
"Park Seonghwa! You walk out that door and choose that low life, we will disown you and never see you again!"
Seonghwa stopped at his mother's threat. Chuckling, he turned around.
"You know mom......I can live without a lot of things....
But Y/N isn't one of them. "
「𝐽𝑒𝑜𝑛𝑔 𝑌𝑢𝑛ℎ𝑜」
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Yunho ran out of his car, not caring to actually turn it off. He bursted through the front door.
"Y/N?! Y/N?!"
He frantically called out for you and panicked when he didn't hear a response from you. He began running through every part of his house, looking in every room and corner, searching for any sign of you. He couldn't even find any sign that you had come home.
"No no no!" He exclaimed in fear and frustration.
He quickly took out his phone and called Hongjoong.
"What's up-?"
"I think they took Y/N!" Yunho immediately said.
"Yunho...are you sure?" Hongjoong asked from the other line.
"I'm sure of it! She's not home and I don't think she made it here! Hongjoong what if the threats they sent me came true?! What if they took her away from me?" Yunho couldn't contain his feelings anymore as he began sobbing, falling to the floor in defeat.
Hongjoong stayed silent on the other line, letting Yunho compose himself before asking:
"Yunho is Y/N really that important to you?"
"Yes! She's the most important person in my life! You don't understand Hongjoong!!...."
Yunho sniffled loudly before confessing:
"I love her and I can't live without her..."
Yunho broke down once again, internally kicking himself for not taking better care of you, for not putting up better security to ensure your safety. He felt like dying until he heard a warm and familiar voice say from his phone:
"I love you too Yunho."
Yunho nearly ended the call when he dropped the phone at the sound of your voice.
"Baby?" He asked.
"I'm sorry for not telling you earlier Yunho. I asked her to come over because I wanted her to know what's been going on with our rival gang." Hongjoong explained.
Yunho let out a sigh of relief and wiped his face with the sleeves of his sweater.
"So you're ok and not hurt?"
Yunho could practically hear you smiling when you said:
"I'm ok Yunho. And don't worry. I'll be home soon. Wait for me."
「𝐾𝑎𝑛𝑔 𝑌𝑒𝑜𝑠𝑎𝑛𝑔」
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Yeosang tossed and turned on his king sized bed, unable to sleep. He grabbed one of the many pillows next to him and wrapped his arms and legs around it, but it didn't feel right. It was cold and somehow couldn't adjust properly to his body.
Groaning he just threw it across the room and slumped on the bed, looking at the ceiling. He was startled by 3 loud knocks on his door.
"Yo! Can you either stop making so much noise or else I'm going to knock you out until our trip is finished. Thank you!" He heard Jongho's tired voice exclaim.
Yeosang sighed. Ever since he left the airport that morning along with the others because they had a mission to carry out, he had been anxious. This was the furthest and about to become the longest time he'd been away from home....
Away from you...
It was only the first night and he already had trouble sleeping. He had gotten so used to having you next to him, cuddled up next to you, inhaling your calming scent as he fell asleep to the sound of your breathing. It was like he needed it or else he'd go insane. If he couldn't have that, he at least needed to hear your voice.
Pushing his luck, he opened up his phone and tried to video call you. His free hand began fidgeting, as he remembered you probably wouldn't pick up since it was late and you were probably asleep too. His heart skipped a beat when your face popped up on the screen.
"Yeosang?" You asked tiredly.
"Uh..... hi baby. Did I wake you?" He asked, feeling guilty for disturbing you.
You yawned softly. "It's fine. What's wrong baby?"
Yeosang blushed at the pet name and at the thought of telling you why he called you.
"I.....couldn't sleep...." He admitted shyly.
"Oh? Why's that love?" You raised an eyebrow.
Yeosang smiled shyly before saying:
"You're not here.......and I wanted to see you....hear you..."
He leaned in closer to the camera, his fingers grazing the screen, wanting to touch you.
"I miss you.."
「𝐶ℎ𝑜𝑖 𝑆𝑎𝑛」
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San strolled somberly through the park, not really paying attention where he was going. Finding an empty bench, he sat down on it and looked at the ground, reflecting on what happened a few days prior:
"You're...what?" He asked, his eyes widening when you told him the news. He began chuckling awkwardly.
"Please tell me your joking."
You held up the pregnancy, 2 lines clearly indicating that it was positive. San nearly fell back when he saw it.
"H-how in the world..?" He couldn't even finish his sentence.
"You really want a biology lesson right now?" You raised an eyebrow at him.
"You know that's not what I meant!" His tone suddenly got loud, frightening you a little.
"We were careful! You were on the pill and I used condoms! What the hell went wrong?!" He demanded.
"You know that doesn't always work! And instead of yelling at me can't you try to be more supportive of the fact I'm carrying your child Choi San!?" You lashed out at him.
San looked away from you in shame, too scared of the situation. He grabbed his coat and left you there with only an apology that broke your heart.
San was brought out of his thoughts when he heard a little squeal. Lifting his head up, he watched as a young couple played with their daughter. The image brought a smile to his face, and then he was filled with dread and remorse for just leaving you like that.
"Choi San you fucking coward." He said as he got up and ran to your house, hoping it wasn't too late to set things right with you.
When you opened the door, you were startled to see him and even more startled when he engulfed you in a hug.
"I'm extremely sorry for leaving you like that Y/N. I was scared and truthfully, I still am."
Pulling back, he looked straight in your eyes to say the following words:
"But I love you and I'm not going to let you go through this alone. I'm going to be here for you...and our child."
「𝑆𝑜𝑛𝑔 𝑀𝑖𝑛𝑔𝑖」
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"Hold still."
You repeated that for what seemed like the 25th time in less than 4 minutes.
"It stings!" Mingi complained when you wiped the cotton pad filled with sanitizing solution on his wound again.
"If you stop moving, we'll get over this faster and it'll hurt less." You reminded him.
Mingi shut his eyes tight and muffled a cry when you rubbed his wound. You rolled your eyes at him as you finished by bandaging him up.
"Seriously, you're such a big baby at times." You told him as you began dressing him in a shirt.
"Oh yeah? Can a big baby take a stab to the chest? No? Thought so." He stated proudly.
You only sighed as you began buttoning up his shirt.
"I only wished you'd be more careful. Sometimes I'm afraid of you getting really hurt...."
Mingi could sense your nervousness and fear of one day losing him. Cupping your cheeks, he smushed your face together and cooed at you softly.
"You don't have to worry about me baby. Hardly anything happens to me aside from little scrapes like these." He assured you.
You snorted. "Yeah. Scrapes that I always end up cleaning and taking care of. Seriously, what would you do if you didn't have me? You can't live without me."
Mingi was going to reply something sarcastically to your teasing, but instead he just let out a gasp and held a hand to his chest.
"What?" You were startled by his action, thinking his wound opened up or started hurting.
Mingi blinked at you before saying:
"You're right....I really can't live without you.."
Without warning, he tackled you onto the bed and wrapped his long limbs around you, rendering you unable to escape him.
"Cause I love you too much to let you go." He winked at you and pressed kisses all over your face.
"Mingi! You dork! Let me go!" You cried out half-heartedly, loving how playful he'd get.
"Nope! I'm never gonna let you go!" He giggled at you as he tightened his embrace on you.
「𝐽𝑢𝑛𝑔 𝑊𝑜𝑜𝑦𝑜𝑢𝑛𝑔」
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You said good night to your date, allowing him to kiss you softly on the lips. It wasn't particularly bad, but you felt no sparks at all, although you pushed those thoughts away, believing that it was only because it was your first kiss together. You walked to the front of your apartment, and began to take out your key when a figure rounded the corner and stepped up next to you.
"Did you have fun on your little date?"
You knew that voice all too well, even if you were born again, you'd still recognize it.
"I did actually Wooyoung." You turned around, your arms crossing over your chest. You couldn't help the smug smirk on your face as you continued:
"He was a perfect gentleman and very well behaved thank you."
Wooyoung scoffed. "Boring old sack if you ask me."
"What the fuck do you want Wooyoung?" You were tired of him and just wanted him gone.
"You know exactly what I want Y/N..."
Pressing his body close to yours, he let one of his hands tuck a piece of hair behind your ear.
"I want you.....I want us again."
You let out a dry laugh at that.
"How funny. If I recall correctly, it was you the one who wanted to end us. The one who didn't want to commit to a relationship, the one who wanted to continue living a wild life and just walk out of whatever we had."
Wooyoung looked away momentarily when you spoke out the harsh truth.
"Well guess what? I moved on and I found someone else to be happy with. I don't need you and you certainly don't need me."
You turned to walk inside your house, but Wooyoung spun you around and pinned you to the wall.
"That's where you're wrong Y/N! I do need you! I can't live without you!"
Not being able to help it, he gripped your chin and kissed you roughly. You didn't even try to push him away, deep down you knew you wanted it too. His kiss definitely sent sparks down your body and you craved it more when he pulled away.
Wooyoung smirked when he saw your expression.
"And I'm willing to bet you can't live without me either..."
「𝐶ℎ𝑜𝑖 𝐽𝑜𝑛𝑔ℎ𝑜」
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Jongho stared at the documents in front of him. All he had to do was pick up the pen next to him, sign away and then he would be free. Free from this arranged marriage set up by both of your parents that threw you both together for years now. Both of you could finally live your lives the way you wanted to......
"So why can't I just do it?"
Jongho didn't need to think too much about it, he knew exactly why he was refusing to sign the papers.
"Jongho? Anytime now." You reminded him, tapping on the dotted line at the bottom of the page.
Jongho hesitantly picked up the pen next to him, sighing sadly. His hand began to tremble as he placed the ballpoint right on the line..... but he couldn't do it.
"Fuck this."
Jongho threw the pen to the side and grabbed the stack of papers, easily ripping them to shreds and discarding them in the nearest trash bin.
"Jongho? What are you doing?" You exclaimed in shock of his actions.
"I can't do this Y/N." He admitted.
"You don't have to be scared anymore Jongho. I told you, our parents won't care-"
"No Y/N! You don't understand! I can't end our marriage because I don't want to!"
You looked at him in shock when he said that. Walking up to you, Jongho held your hands.
"From the beginning......despite not wanting any of this....you were always so sweet and caring towards me, and you were always there when I needed you, even if at times I pushed you away.."
Your eyes welled up with tears when he began talking.
"I'm not ready to let you go.......I can't let you go."
He looked into your eyes before admitting:
"Y/N, I love you. I truly and wholeheartedly fell in love with you...... and I don't think I could live the rest of my life without you in it...so please...
Can you please stay with me?"
Gifs not mine, credit goes to their respective owners
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moriartysnerd · 2 years
Jim Moriarty x rockstar!reader
A/N: this is my first time ever writing with moriartys character. It may be off from his true character and there may be human error. Apologise in advance.
The sweat dripped down, circling around your body as you continued to prance around the stage. By now the speakers had cut off any noise that wasn’t the beat or your own voice. The constant beat of your guitar bouncing against your abdomen and hips had started to become slightly sore. You flicked your head back, while grabbing your guitar, in an attempt to move the damped mess out of your eyes. The crowed was cheering, almost mimicking the ringing in your ears as you swallowed dryly. You where out of breath and worn out, but by God where you going to give the last verse your all. Finally, you stilled on stage, feet glued to a particular position as the lights faded to black. You panted hard unable to catch your breath, your lungs hurt, your eyes hurt, your throat hurt but holy shit, that was one of the best performances of your life. You’d spent months on this tour, and needless to say, your partner back in London didn’t seem to be too happy about it. He’d warned you how bored he’d be without your undivided attention. James had built your career. He was somewhat of a manger for you. When he first came up to you, you’d never recognised him. It was a cold evening, your fingers hurt twice as much as they did remembering the events
You where softly strumming on your guitar in the middle of London town centre, waiting for your friends to finish up with their classes and come and meet you. The unfortunate thing about going to a separate university was the scattered time tables. You weren’t causing too much attention to yourself, it was a busy day and at worst people would think you where a busker. You where only tuning your guitar back up, it was starting to sound pitchy and unpleasant and you needed it perfect for the bar later tonight. You weren’t just specialised in the guitar. You where a jack of all trades. Could play a lot of instruments. Thinking back that must of been what James saw in you. It had to be. It wasn’t long until you caught the attention of someone, despite it being a humid day he still wore a trench coat and scarf. A shorter man following behind him. They taller man seemed to stop when you locked eyes, hair being brown back by the wind. You found the nerve to atleast smile, he looked like he hadn’t slept in weeks. The fear finally stuck you when he headed quickly towards you, muttering to himself. He was analysing you. It didn’t take a genius to realise that. His loyal lap dog following short after. The shorter man seemed to limp, he stuttered on a few words but managed to keep a conversation with you going. The questions lingered in your head longer than you’d like to admit, and with the cloaked man looming over you. You felt trapped.
“My names doctor John Watson, and this is sherlock.”
You recognised him. How could you not. The Sherlock Holmes. They wernt there to hurt you. They where there to interrogate you. Johns words seemed to calm you once you realised who they where. Fortunately for you the conversation and answers didn’t last Long when you heard a groan from sherlock, who suddenly stormed off calling back behind him.
“They don’t know anything John. They havnt been here for that long. No change from the music. Even their fingers arnt reddened from playing their guitar. Well loose the suspect if we wait any longer.”
John sighed. It seemed as if he was used to being dragged all over the place. He thanked you before waddling back after sherlock. You groaned softly, you wernt a busker, but you didn’t dare say that out loud. Imagine telling a famous detective he was wrong. You sighed softly, running your fingers through your soft hair, taking a step back you heard a crunch. Instantly looking down, you seemed to pray you hadn’t accidentally stood on a pigeon. Thankfully, it wasn’t. However, what was there seemed somthing more important that the slight decrease in London’s flying rat population. A pendrive. It wasn’t there when you first sat down. And no one other than the detective and his faithful sidekick had been near you. You added up the dots rather quickly. It couldn’t be important, Sherlock Holmes wouldn’t of just simply dropped something right? You picked up the drive, looking around before shoving it into your pocket. Going back to your guitar, finally your friends came from around the corner. They all looked out of breath, it was reliving that they’d actually run to meet you. You loved your group of nerds. However the rest of the day was draining. You couldn’t shake the feeling of eyes on you. Not fully anyway. Even with your friends constantly around you there was always something just slightly off. It was later that evening when you met James. You where about to come on stage when a man in a gorgeous black suit came out, he had a soft Irish accent and smelt of mint and old books. He instantly caught your attention. His little smirk covered his face as he realised you where staring.
“Didnt mummy ever tell you not to stare my dear?”
You face flushed with embarrassment as you clutched your guitar case. Biting your lip hard and walking past him to get to the stage. To this day his little chuckle still rang through your mind.
After they lead you off stage you where taken back to your dressing room and completely spoilt. They made sure you had water, and an ice pack just incase and they finally left you alone. Once alone the realness set it and all you could think about was James. How mad you where at him. How you’d left London angry as he screamed about how he’d made you.
“I could just as easily take it away”
you mimicked under your breath. Fists clenching into balls.
“What was that, my love?”
It wasn’t until after your little solo that you ran into James again. This time he was outside when you left. You where planning on leaving with friends but the night hadn’t planned out this way when two of your friends had gotten so drunk they’d thrown up. Another vivid memory you’d never forget. The Irish man approached you, smirking a little wider as you kept your eyes of him
“You’re learning.”
He spoke softly standing just infront of you, you wanted to know what he wanted. He knew it But the drawn out silences caused you to crack faster
“Can I help you?”
You asked, trying to keep it polite. You wernt one to judge based on looks, but he looked important.
“Your preformance. I want to represent you, wouldn’t you like to be a star my dear? I could make you shine.”
“What was that, my love?” The sweet sound of his voice filled the quiet room as you turned to glare. The second you locked eyes your glare softened. You couldn’t stay mad at him, well you could, just not when he came out all the way from London.
“I didn’t think you’d ever leave London.”
“For you dear the distance was worth it.”
He tried to make a move towards you before you stood up, backing further away. He stopped in his tracks, chuckling and looking down.
“Still bad blood?”
He’d lied to you. About everything. You’d figured it out a few months after. All because of that stupid pendrive. You’d left it out in the open when James had first visited your apartment. It was quite a cozy small space. You’d put the kettle on and had a cup of tea while discussing what you where studying in uni. The man seemed very enthralled with what you had to say, and everything about you if we’re being honest. By the time he had left the pendrive was also gone. You didn’t think to much of it. A clumsy mistake, you’d misplaced it. That wasn’t the case. You’d found the pendrive in James’s pocket once again when he came to visit. Only it was accompanied by a second one. You bit your lip and placed them on the table while he was in the kitchen. He’d noticed they’d been moved. But didn’t hide them. He didn’t even pick them up when he left. He just left. It had information. Cases on Sherlock Holmes. Most importantly the victims of the London bombings. A full detail description of each and every single one of them And that’s when the knock came on your door. Sherlock Holmes himself.
“He’s stalking me! I don’t know what he wants but he won’t leave me alone Y/N! I never asked for this I never-“
“Jim. Jim Moriarty. He told me James... he told me everything. He had photos. Evidence. He took those pendrives. You’ve been using me as a messenger for months. Sherlock knew that if he faked an interest in me. You’d use me. And that’s what you did. I was secretly passing both of you those pendrives without even knowing. I was helping a criminal!”
James snapped out of his little victim role. He chucked and shook his head
“smart, very smart my dear. It’s a shame, my plans for you wernt over yet...”
You shook your head frantically, and grabbed your suitcase. Leaving soon after. The criminal didn’t even give chase. He watched you leave. He knew he’d hurt you.
“I made you.”
You glared at the now foreign man stood there. Your gaze was burning into his soul. He was right. He made you. He could take it all away. But was it really yours to begin with. Moriarty sensed your thoughts by the look on your face and gently moved to put his arm around your waste, this time you didn’t stop him. You leaned into him, nuzzling into the crook of his neck.
“See, isn’t it so much better to be in daddy’s arms agian kitten?”
He was a psycho. he’d ruined you. He was a murderer. He killed people. He blackmailed people. But, he was different with you, he was kind and gentle, he’d helped you with you career. You where already in to deep. He wouldn’t let any harm come to you. In that moment. That was good enough. You locked eyes with jim Moriarty. Your Jim Moriarty. And gently placed your hot lips aginst his, pulling him closer by the jacket and slowly letting him claim you. You tried to pull away when you needed air but Moriarty just chased your lips. Even outside of work he couldn’t help the torture. When you two finally separated you looked deep into his eyes, holding his face in the palm of your hand.
“I love you Jim Moriarty.”
“I know you do my love. That was the plan.”
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magicalsalamander · 3 years
Show Me Your Teeth
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Pairing: BTS Jimin  ⇆ Reader
Genre: Rottweiler Hybrid | FBI | Fluff | Angst | Eventual Smut |
Summary: Hybrids were common amongst civilians, but monsters lurked, created by the government. H.O.U.N.D, pronounced hound, is Hybrid Operation in United Negotiation of Defense, an allegiance of hybrids and federal officers. They were weapons breed for tactic and war. Special agent Y/L/N came back marked a failure after your secret last mission. Politics involved, you were to be assigned a Hound officer. What happens when the monster, Cerberus, gets assigned to you?    
Word: 11.6K
Rating: Mature; Explicit themes, mentions of guns, PTSD episode, possessive behavior, gunshot wounds, cruel behavior, torture, abuse, bullying, crude and discriminatory language. If I’ve missed any tags let me know.
A/N: Thank you for reading! I’ve been working on this for a few weeks and I hope you enjoy it. Originally a oneshot, now a twoshot. Lightly edited, please be kind.  
| Masterlist | Final
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Lowering your hand from your brow you waited until you were signaled to ease. The hardened expression of the Director followed from the crumpled document on his desk to you, he gestured silently for you to sit. Carefully maneuvering your left arm as you sat down in one of the leather seats in front of his oversized desk. The mahogany desk was in a state of semi-cluttered, several stacks of papers yet the items closets to you were impeccable. His gold plaque with his name proudly written was polished as it gleamed.
Politics, the size was compensating for something.
The dark pigment under his baggy eyes shadowed deeper as his neutral expression wavered as he held your gaze. You were glad he couldn't hear your heartbeat, but it was near deafening in your ears. He folded his hands on top of his desk, cinching the shoulders of his black suit that was normally starched beyond movement. The amount of medals on the left breast had him wiggling his left arm in adjustment until he settled. The sheer amount of medals he's collected since his service to his time as the Director of the FBI was quite obnoxious.
You sat perched near the edge of your seat, you already had an idea of what was going to happen. As soon as you got off the plane you were escorted to headquarters, duffle bag still packed. In the steady voice, "Agent Y/L/N reporting back from Victiz. Sir, you requested my audience?"
He reached into his desk, medals clanking, and pulled out a thick manilla folder at least a hundred pages thick. Papers slid out of it as he let gravity take over and slammed it onto his desk. You didn't dare break eye contact with him focusing on the tip of his bulbous nose. The silence was eerie as he flipped it open, he pulled out a thick packet and placed it facing you. Quickly glancing down you read the title then back up, it was your report you had submitted.
"Y/L/N in your recent mission to Victiz, we've," clearing his throat, "come to realize that you require assistance."
Domestics was your playing field, but upon special request, you answered the call to duty, even if it lied overseas. You'd always say yes to the Director—at least, you used to. Loyalty ran deep in your veins as it was empathy, and pretense to serve him. Without him you wouldn't be here today, but…three months, three months had your eyes wavering in darkness.
You took in a deep breath; one you've been holding in for the last three months. You sharply gritted your teeth before you calmed yourself on the discrete exhale. You knew why he had called you and it wasn't because of your "lack of ability". It was his lack of ability to save his ass. Three months, you spent three months amongst a revolution to come home and be told you required assistance. You swallowed your pride in front of your commander. "Sir, I had no choice."
He arched a brow, "No choice?" He tilted his head in condescendence, "There is no excuse for weakness or mistakes Agent Y/L/N. Our country depends on you. I depend on you. We can't afford that type of mistake again—the world may be splitting because you couldn't prevent it. Do you understand Agent?"
Correction, his mistake. This was all diversion from the real problem. You became a special agent going through hell, fighting and outcompeting the rest to prove you were worthy. Seeing the other agents assigned a Hound used to put a smirk on your face. The Director even smirking alongside you as he praised you. With the vendetta you worked hard for five years to get where you are now, to earn his praise, assigned top-secret missions by the Director, without the help of a hound. You raised from the soil, trudged through the mud to stand where you are now—on your own.
Quickly your loyalty was turning to sludge and embolic. You fought to keep yourself empathetic and loyal. He was like a father after all to you. The eyes that once looked at you with pride and adoration turned to hate and bitterness.
You gritted your teeth, "Yes, Sir."
Adjusting himself to sit upright by smoothing out the lapels of his coat, "Every elite agent has a H.O.U.N.D and you are the last without one. The government specially created and trained these…monsters, so things like that won't happen. They never miss a target."
You were aware of them; you had seen agents with their own as the government began initiating the integration two years ago. H.O.U.N.D, pronounced hound, was Hybrid Operation in United Negotiation of Defense. A specialized unit of canine hybrids that were bred for war, ruthless in the way they fought like their animal counterpart. Although they were human in resemblance except for the dog tail and ears. You didn't know much about them besides the occasion you saw other agents with their officer in passing. However, you heard tales of limbs being snapped by jaws, their extended fangs, and their bloodthirst. Rumor or not, you wouldn't question their ability—they are hell hounds as they were breed for.
"Agent, you were shot and held captive." He chuckled but it held no humor, it was condescending. "It was supposed to be easy for you, yet here you are injured. I never thought you'd disappoint me so greatly Y/L/N."
You bit the inside of your cheek taming your tongue behind your teeth. Your mind flashes back to three months ago when you sat down in the same office in the dead of night. There was a state of emergency in Victiz, the country was in an uproar over the tyranny as the public demanded a democracy. Your countries ambassador in Victiz was kidnapped by an extremist guerilla group trying to reestablish tyranny. The Victiz government did not want to be involved in the recovery of your representative.
The Director was right, it was supposed to be a simple rescue. You've run through drills of disarming and recovery a million times.
It was supposed to be.
Sneaking in through a slip in the wall you stuck to the wall as you navigated the warehouse. You hid behind crates as you glanced around the corner. The target was sitting alone in a foldable chair. A single overhead light that illuminated the isles intervalley shadowed his silhouette as he was hunched forward. Assessing your position you quietly loaded your hand with a knife. The sound of footsteps filled your ears. The world paused as you listened in catching a glance around, still in the shadows. Emerging from the shadows the footsteps took on a presence of a tall silhouette to a masked male figure.
You watched as the man raised a gun and pointed it directly at the target. "It'll all be over soon." He flicked his index over the pull trigger.
Switching your blade for your gun you stood up and sidestepped out. Pointing your gun at the captor, "Freeze!"
The man cocked a thick brow then pointed the gun at you. "Oh, we have visitors?"
The man chuckled, nudging the barrel against the ambassador's shoulder. "Your people here to rescue you. Looks like they just sent one, you must not be as important as you say you are."
The ambassador stood up from his chair and your heart skipped a beat as he stood up with a smirk and tucked his hands in his pockets. The pit of your stomach fell and rose to your throat with revolting ad nauseam. Your skin rolled in waves of goosebumps. Immediately you began calculating things in your mind as the man with the gun took a step forward towards you the ambassador stopped him with a raised hand. The ambassador took the gun from the man and pointed it directly at you. "The war begins tonight. Long live the tyrant."
He punctuated each last word, then he pulled the trigger.
Blinking away the memory, you looked up to your commander. "Director, I don—."
He cut you off with a hand held in the air. "Agent, I understand, but we are implementing the change whether you like it or not. You're getting a hound. He will be directly working alongside you and you are to take responsibility for him."
You tried once again, "Director—."
"A hybrid life is disposable but yours isn't Agent."
Fumes tickled in your stomach, yet, you sat with your tongue still; venomous words sitting at the tip of it for him. You—you still were loyal. You knew he was being harsh because of how all this had made him look. How this blunder in the ambassador's double nature had made him look incompetent, the FBI incompetent—and it rested all on your shoulders. Over the pain, blacking out for the most of it, you remember mostly darkness, the itchy blindfold, yet the patriotism you held tightly behind your clenched teeth stayed there.
You were loyal and always will be.
By implementing a hound, it would boost the false security that the forces were incomparable and fearful as whispered about in foreign lands. It was all politics. You were the punching bag while he shined with the glory of strengthening the nation in a time where the rest of the world is grasping for glory. He was making sure agents are strong and safe. In the shadow of glory, you were powerless and under his command to obey.
A soldier's duty to obey.
You were loyal and always would be.
He fished through the folder as he spoke, his voice taking on a harsh tone. "If you had one it wouldn't have happened Agent. I really trusted and believed in you, but I now know your skills. Certainly, it will never compare to a hound's. Don't ever forget you are representing me when you're out on the field." He snorted smugly under his breath, "Maybe you need a whole team of hounds."
You felt his words cutting deep, the bullet shards in your arm somehow burying deeper. His words hurt. This is where you open your mouth. "Director, I do not need a hound. I'm capable of handling myself."
He cleared his throat and sighed, "I'm not changing my mind Y/L/N."
Flipping through the folder again and pulled out a paper putting it over your report. Standing up from his desk he straightened out his jacket and rounded his desk. Glancing down at the application form a picture in the left corner showcases a picture of a man—no, a hybrid, a hound. The hybrid's face was handsome at first glance, but you didn't get to look more than that.
"This is H.O.U.N.D Officer Park, rottweiler, and top of his class. A real monster with a count. Got the impact of a truck when he strikes, and a good shot with a 364 score. The H.O.U.N.D has never seen anything like him. A true beast of a machine."
You read off the same stats that the general was giving to you. His list of awards and achievements trailed off to the second page you didn't bother to turn to. He was good, no he was great, but still…you didn't want the hound.
The Director cleared his throat and in a booming voice, "Officer Park, enter."
You heard the doorknob clink as it twists and heavily boots thumped rhythmically on the wooden floor. You twist around in your seat and came to face the rottweiler. His tall, lean figure filled out his pressed clothes. His white shirt was taunt as it alluded to the idea of the refined muscles underneath; silver tags hung from his neck and clanked softly as he marched until he paused a few feet from you. His black cargo pants that were tight around his thighs were tucked neatly into his polished, black combat boots that gleamed as he snapped his heels together to stand at attention as he saluted.
You finally took in his face, his features were handsome, silky dark hair carefully parted and pushed back, and full lips. Black, floppy ears equally as polished blended in with his dark hair. All hounds you had met so far had a more rugged appearance, scared and tattered from the action, yet he had none. You don't know why but that unsettled you. When your gaze finally reached his eyes you found the familiar rugged tension as they were boring forward and technical in tension. His gaze peeled from the Director's to yours as he finally lowered his salute.
The General stepped forth patting him on the shoulder, "Y/L/N I want to introduce you to Officer Park. He's under your care now."
You meet his eyes, the dark brown orbs, carefully analyze you as you are sure you portray the same tone. You held his eyes as you stood up, and soon it was clear he towered over you. You felt the need to state your presence. You took his extended hand and the callouses and thick fingers nearly engulfed your hand.
"Do you have your belongings Officer Park?"
He pulled his hand back and folded them behind his back lacing with his other, "Yes, Sir."
The Director turned to you and smiled, "Goodbye, Agent Y/L/N."
Your mouth was left clenched as you politely gestured and began walking out of the door assuming he would follow you. You heard the heavy boots trail after you as the door shut behind him.
This…this wasn't how you expected things to go.
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Pushing open the front door with a bit of a huff, stepping inside you flicked on the light switch. When the Director said he would be under your care you didn't think literally. You thought he'd be at his barracks and he would just be present during work hours. You had realized quickly that he was meant literally under your care, under your household, you were in charge…of his care. You glanced over your shoulder and saw him walking tight-lipped from the driveway with his duffle bag. He walked as if he was marching, legs stiff and hair barely bouncing. His gaze was the most daunting, sharp and cold. Shaking the thought you shifted topics mentally. You couldn't be afraid of him. He was your hound. You'd have to go back tomorrow probably to collect the rest of his stuff.
You hooked your keys on the key rack. Stepping inside holding the door open for him you hurriedly defend your home. "I haven't been home in a few months, so I'm sorry for the dust and the mess."
He nodded in a curt motion. You toed off your shoes and placed them on their rack. He stood politely not too far from you awaiting direction. You weren't sure how this was going to work. You had a guest room, but it was mostly unused office space. With the door closed, it was quiet, you could only hear your awkward breathing. The tension in the atmosphere was heavy as you didn't know really what to do next. You rounded him nearly flattening yourself against the wall avoiding touching him as he nearly took up the whole entryway. "Uhm, will you…will you give me a minute? Just make yourself at home." You sped off before you had a chance to see his reaction.
Quickly you dropped your stuff off in your room and stood there for a moment. Your bed was made just like you left it, your robe was still draped over the bench at the end of your bed. Everything was as it seemed, but it didn't feel—nothing felt normal. You rubbed over your left arm and the soreness responded. Yes, this was real. You…you had a hound. Retreating you crossed the hall to the guest bedroom. You flicked on the lights and the room was nearly bare, furnished from your college budget. There was a full bed only a plain white sheet over it to protect the mattress. The end table, desk, and dresser were all covered in a fine layer of dust. The walls were bare, but the rest of your house was similar. Ever since you've moved in you've spent more time at headquarters or on missions. This was more of a hotel than a home.
You pulled the sheet off and speed across the hall and tossed it in the washing machine, then you dug into the cupboard. Do you even have any other sheets that are full size? Your bed is a king. Maybe you should just use the sheet you put in the wash. No, what if he wanted to rest? Finding another white sheet, you hopped to pull it off the top of the stack. You hissed as you reached up straining your injury as it burned to remind you of its existence.
A hand was placed gently on your back preventing you from tipping backward. Gasping under your breath you turned your head as he reached for the sheet you were attempting to grab. He was nearly pressed up against you, but the notion dissolved before you had time to register it happened. He held it out to you as you thanked him. Quietly he followed you to the room. Again you unfolded it but haphazardly flapped it about as your arm throbbed. Cautiously and silently he took it from you seeing you struggle again. He began making the bed.
Chewing on the inside of your cheek, you could handle it. You really could. You nodded rubbing your hand over your forearm. It felt odd. All of this was so sudden. Heading back to the cupboard you were able to pull the extra comforter out. It was a fluffy, white down nearly engulfing you as it was meant for your bed. You went into your room and took a pillow off your bed. You stood at the door as he tucked in the last corner of the bed and he stood at attention heels pressed. You carefully set the pillow and comforter on top of the bed and began unfolding it. Easily he helped as he finished the last few tugs.
You stood there staring at the down, as he awaited you. You were used to being in charge, you fell into the role of leadership easily, but this, this was a different kind of responsibility. Something caught your eye for a split second, you were sure you caught his tail wagging behind him before it stilled just as fast. "There is a bathroom right next door for you to use. The kitchen is free for you to use and eat anything you like."
He nodded.
It was an odd pause as you waited for him to fill the silence, say something, but he was a statue.
Pursing your lips you spoke, "Officer Park, I don't know the first thing about hybrids or hounds. If you're uncomfortable here, we can always get you your place, eventually, I'm sure you will want to anyways. For the time being, let's," you held your hand out to him, "get along."
His expression tightened if possible. He looked from your hand to your face and stepped forward taking your outstretched hand in a curt shake. You pulled the hand clutching it and nodded, "That's settled then." Slowly you began backing out. "I'll let you get settled in. Good night."
He nodded standing there still as you backed out and went into your room. Closing the door behind you you slumped against your door.
How did you end up here?
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You rotated your shoulder dispelling the tension from sleeping. As you rounded the corner into your living room you paused in your steps as you made eye contact with Park. Yes. It took you a moment to remember. You were in charge of another being. He was sitting on the couch fully dressed, as he was wearing the same clothing he was yesterday. Your mind was still awakening from the haze of sleep. Didn't he bring a duffle bag with him? How long had he been awake? You squinted at the clock on the wall as it read out 7:30 am. You were still in your sweats and long sleeve pajamas. You felt underdressed in your own home. Slightly nodding towards him as a form of greeting he returned the gesture stiffly. You moved to the kitchen and pulled open the fridge and it was stark clean. It was as if you had just purchased it. You searched the cupboards and it was the same, except for a single random can of beans.
You came back out and stood at the entrance of the kitchen. "Officer Park."
He stood up hearing his name and hovered by the edge of the couch.
"I don't have any food here. I'm going to call for delivery," you paused suddenly remembering, "later, we can pick up the rest of your things from the barracks while we are out."
"I have everything I own with me, Miss."
Hearing his voice was jarring as the only time you remember hearing it was yesterday when you first met. His voice was softer and melodic in comparison to his exterior. For a rottweiler, his ears were more Doberman like as they were perked. Belatedly you then realize they were docked, probably for safety purposes.
Everything? You refrained shifting your expression, the last thing he needed was pity. You carefully prodded. "Park, is that your only change of clothes?"
He nodded confidently. "Yes, Miss."
His only pair of clothing? You anticipated that he'd have more at least a personal blanket, a trinket, something. The Director's words echoed in your ear from last night. "Hybrid's lives are disposable, yours isn't."
Anger fills you as you process it all. You'd expect the government to treat them well, yet they treated them like they were--disposable. Rubbing your left arm, you paused soaking in your thoughts at the small realization. If he only had one pair of clothes, exactly how was he living before?
He sensed your unease. His eyebrows knitted in confusion. Did his lack of items upset you? He didn't know how he could correct his error.
Licking your lips, you moved forward to head back down towards the hallway. "Let me get dressed I'll be right back."
He nodded and stood there with the same blank expression. Seeing the lack of response, you smartened up and turned on the T.V and handed him the remote. "Watch something while I'm gone, I shouldn't be too long. Food will be here soon."
He analyzed the control as if it was something alien. You slipped behind the wall over the hallway. Making a motion you pointed behind you, "I'll be back."
He stared up from his standing position, his knee jerked until he straightened it to place. "Yes, Miss."
You spent longer in the shower than you had anticipated. The warmth of the water was soothing, and you felt the painful kinks leave you. Before you got in the shower you called the café and placed an order. After your shower, you dressed for the day. The doorbell rang as you were toweling off your hair. You grabbed your wallet and headed towards the door. As you rounded towards the door, Park was crouching and hoovering by the front door. Before you could move further Park growled viciously, and it sent a chill down your spine. "Miss, stay back! Intruder."
You quirked a brow before you understood what was going on. You couldn't help but laugh under your breath before you smothered it. "Park, step down."
He tensed, hesitant on obeying your command. You repeated yourself, but it was followed by a breathy chuckle. He couldn't understand why you laughed; this was serious. An unfamiliar person was on the other side of the door! He had to protect!
You pushed past his blockade, but he was hot on your trail, body tense and ready the second something goes wrong. You opened the door a scrawny teen held a large plastic bag. His voice cracked as he held out the receipt, "Whoa, dude, ugh—de-delivery for Y/n."
You smiled ignoring his other commentary. "That's me." You gave him the money and a tip as you exchanged the bag from the kid. You waved ensuring he got back to his car safely as the teen practically ran back to his car. Shrugging you turning around in to get a face full of a hardened chest that was flexing as he heaved with each rumble. Your eyes widened as you jumped back nearly tripping. His fangs were out and you realized they started high up in his gums. His ears were perked forward and eyes were darkened as he looked feral. You finally realized why the teen's hand was trembling, the stuttering, and practically running back to his car. His being sent another chill down your spine when he looked down at you, but you gulped it back. You couldn't be afraid of your officer.
Putting on a smile you reassured him, "It's okay, it's just the delivery guy."
As you closed the door his neck was nearly stretched, veins protruding in his neck as he watched the beat-up Honda Civic drive off before you shut the door.
He encroached the door and stared out the small window. Yes, just moments ago you were spooked, but then it hit you. He was kind of silly, he was acting like a real guard dog. Especially when his shoulders slightly jumped as you could tell he was building up a bark that left in quiet huffs. You couldn't help biting your lip to suppress the laugh again. For someone who looked like a mafia boss, he was being fussy about a delivery boy. You did a double-take as you realized there was a small nub that was slightly wagging within his pants. He had a tail? You tilted your head watching it wag before you realized you were staring at his butt. Which was plump, but that wasn't the point! How could you stare! You quickly looked away and began your trek to the living room.
Cooling down the flush that had begun to creep up your neck, you called him, "Park, he's gone, it's okay." You crouched down as you set the bag of food on the coffee table. Fishing out the trays you went into the kitchen to grab some drinks. Looking over your shoulder Park still stood frozen in the entryway halfway between leaning to you and glancing out the window. This time you couldn't contain your laughter, yup, he was kind of silly. "Come on, eat."
His brows raised at the tinkling sound of your laugh. His ears twitched at the soft sound, it almost quelled him completely as the sound danced around in his chest. He…liked that sound. However, he wasn't one to forget his role. Glancing back at the door once, he carefully walked over to you robotically. Standing there you pointed to the couch, "Sit." As soon as the words left your mouth you realized that sounded like a command for an actual dog you changed your wording. "Please take a seat. I don't know what you like, so I just got you the same thing that I get. It's good I promise." It struck you, you spun in your spot, "Do you have any food allergies?"
His eyes were wide as saucers, "No, Miss."
Sighing in relief you handed him a tray that he took graciously with two hands. "Bon appetit."
You sat comfortably on the floor and opened your tray revealing the savory breakfast bagel sandwich. This was one of the first things you had wanted ever since you came back. Bringing it to your mouth you were in heaven as you took the first bite, savoring all the breakfast essentials.
Park was staring at you the whole time, watching the way you casually ate.
You turned to him and realized he still hadn't opened his food. Your smile fell, "What's wrong, is it not what you like?"
His ears perked up, eyes wide as he shook his head, "No, It's alright, Miss." He slid down onto the floor next to you. You watched as he finally popped open as you took a bite of your sandwich. The tip of his pink tongue peeked out as he picked up the sandwich. He looked at you, then he took a small bite before he paused as if he was paralyzed. The flavors danced on his tongue and it was near euphoria. He had never tasted something so flavorful and delicious. The only thing he had ever been fed back in the labs was supplemental meals in pellets or slop that was just an off shade of brown.
You watched his expression carefully, afraid he would hate it, but who could hate breakfast sandwiches? Suddenly his eyes gleamed as the edges creased in an eye smile. He ravenously began devouring the sandwich in large bites noisily. His hands were empty within seconds except for crumbs as he sucked on his thumbs getting all the savory oil. His tail was wagging fast as his pants made soft rustling sounds. You couldn't help it, a giggle spilled as you watched his reaction. A hot blush covered his cheeks as he stared at you with a finger in his mouth. The sound again that was like a call to something internal within him beckoned him to look at you. That sound…he couldn't understand why you were laughing. Nothing funny had happened.
He looked gentile for the first time since his arrival as his eyes sparkled wide. You wondered how he could do that go from looking so terrifying to so gentle you couldn't believe he'd hurt a fly.
You had the great idea of getting extra; you took the empty tray and replaced it with the empty tray. He shook his head trying to place it back, "No, I'm fine Miss."
You placed it back in his lap, "Please, I got more than enough. Eat."
You turned back to your meal and the TV finally paying attention to what was on. He looked back and forth between you and the tray, squirming in his seat. He wanted to eat, but it was too much. His stomach believed otherwise, but he would be fine if he ignored it like he usually did. It was more than he's ever been offered. Were you testing him? Yet, you weren't turning around. Your body language wasn't tense. Carefully he popped the tray open, he gazed at you, waiting for a reaction, but you kept chewing. He picked up the sandwich and began eating, a little faster than necessary in case you changed your mind at any point. He'd deal with the consequences later. Eating so fast he began choking as he swallowed nearly the whole sandwich down.
Rapidly you poured him a glass of water and handed him the glass, "Here drink this!"
He took it and drank the whole glass, sighing in relief as he cleared his throat. When he finally was all right he couldn't look you in the eye, embarrassed with himself. He waited for his punishment, tensing his body for the hit.
You smiled, realizing his tray was empty again. You looked at the tray and realized he was clenching his fist until they were turning white. A sadness overcame you that had him whining as he scented the shift in you. You reached into the bag and pulled out yet another sandwich. You gently replaced the empty one with another, his fist still tight. Softly you assured him, "You don't have to eat so fast; no one is going to steal your food. I won't ever keep food from you."
Although it felt odd to say it, you wanted to assure him. You wanted him to be comfortable. This was going to be your life from now on. Park was going to always be a part of your life whether you liked it or not. He was your hound.
He was your hound.
On a sigh, you spoke words you never thought you'd be saying. "This is your home too." You brushed your still slightly wet hair from your face when he remained stoic, face recessing back into a neutral blank.
As you rustled your hair your sweet scent filled the air. He realized how sweet it was as you rustled back as it filtered the air erasing the small sadness that was there before. It was intoxicating as he waited for it to be ruined by a foul scent that usually accompanied lying. Yet, it stayed sweet, it had been since he had met you.
You licked your lips and nodded assuming that was the end of the conversation. If there was one thing you learned through your training as an agent is patience. He'd speak when he'd want to. You knew space and you'd want the same. Just as this has been a lot for you, you can only imagine how stressful this must have been for him. Maybe you needed the silence to answer more than you could want words from him.
He stared at the cardboard top of the tray. He rubbed his thumbs over the paper feeling the small ridges. This was real. He blinked as he couldn't place the feeling. He had never felt something like this before. It made him squint his eyes, it bothered him he couldn't understand the feeling.
"Okay, Miss."
You were surprised at the sound of his voice that came almost too quiet. You offered him a smile to let him know you heard him. He stared at you with eyes that were swirling with emotions as his ears swiveled slightly. Clearing your throat, there was a lot you had to learn. Oddly, you settled into a comfortable relaxation. You forgot about your arm. You forgot about why Park was being sprung into your life. The failure, the politics, it all.
A halo of light glows around you as he found himself staring at you. He reached up and rubbed over his chest, that odd feeling had been swirling around for a while now. It was probably the need to protect you. Protect…his…home now. This…was…his—his thoughts were cut off by the sound of your laughter again as you laughed at something on T.V. He followed your line of sight and to your face as your face scrunched up as you lingered in whatever was funny.
He clutched the tray in his hands. Yes, that must be what he's feeling. It must be that. He will protect you.
You somehow fell asleep somewhere between the episodes of some sitcom you didn't know the name of played. You woke up on the couch and Park was still sitting on the floor watching whatever was on TV. Lightly blushing, he must've placed you on the couch. Not dwelling on that fact, you wiped the sleep out of your eye as you looked at the clock and it was just a bit past noon.
You sat up straight and Park turned around to look at you hearing the rustling.
You joked, "Hello." He nodded his head.
"Sorry for falling asleep." He shook his head to disagree.
The coffee table had been cleaned. You thanked him for it and his tail wagged again before he tempered it. Getting up and stretching you winced and hissed when you realize you had been sleeping on your left arm.
He stood up immediately, "Miss are you okay?"
You waved it off, "I must've slept funny, that's all." Rotating your arm, you released the tension in your shoulder, but it was sore still as you lowered it.
He didn't believe you. He noticed you were awkward with your left arm as you always were caressing and cradling it. Before he could comment you moved past him. You sighed internally realizing that you needed to head to the store for groceries. You couldn't keep ordering take out. In the kitchen, you dug in your junk drawer and got out a notebook and began writing a list. Knocking the pen against your chin you tried to think of anything you're missing after jotting down the basics. You went back to the living room, sitting down on the floor again and letting the notepad rest on the coffee table. "Park, what do you need at the store?"
He shook his head.
You quirked a brow, "Please, tell me what you need. I want you to be comfortable."
He hung his head low, in a whisper you barely caught onto, "There's hybrid soap that's unscented. That's it."
You raised a brow, "That's it?"
He nodded.
"Okay." You ripped the page out and stuffed the list into your purse. Slipping on your shoes, "I'll be right back. I'll just be a bit."
He stood up immediately alarmed. "I will go with you. I need to stay with you."
You raised a brow, crossing your arms across your chest, "It's just shopping. I can handle myself." He was poking at a sore spot. You could handle yourself. You can handle yourself. He stood chest puffed in full seriousness. The same assurance he had before with the delivery boy returned.
"I'm okay on my own."
"I will go."
Realizing you were arguing with the wall you swallowed your pride. This. This was something you were going to have to learn to deal with. You were going to learn how to be a "team" and work with another. Chanting to yourself, you reminded yourself this was a learning process. "Fine, come on."
Quickly he slipped his boots on and you unhooked your keys and closed the door behind him.
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Putting the car into park it struck you. The whole car ride he had been quiet, the soft hum of music playing from the radio had filled the silence. Before getting out of the car you turned to him, "Hey, are you okay going around shopping?"
He turned to you, "Yes, Miss."
You cringed internally at the formality he had been calling you Miss this whole time. But you respected it, it would probably feel more awkward using first names.
It felt stupid but you felt the need to remind him, "Please don't growl at anyone, unless they're a real threat okay?" You wanted to let him know, "If it ever is too much, let me know. We can leave at any point."
He nodded, lips slightly pouting, and you both got out of the car.
Stepping into the store you carefully side-eyed Park and his eyes were telling a different story as he was searching nearly everyone for threat. You decided to let him do whatever made him comfortable, even if it was glaring at everyone. You pulled out a shopping cart and picked up everything off your list including some things that weren't. More things weren't on your list than were, but who were you to deny your love for the good stuff. You watched Park if he took an interest in anything, but he was natural and bleak about it all.
You stopped in the hybrid section. Scattered through the store there had been a few, but truly you noticed other hybrids with their owners in this section. There were all types of rabbits, feline or canine hybrids. Before yesterday you never really noticed them, it all was normalcy, now with Park, you felt more aware. When you passed them with Park you noticed them freeze and divert their eyes from him. The rabbit hybrid nearly tugged its owner out of the aisle. You felt bad for them, but you both had the right to be there just as much as everyone else. Some other canines dared to stare at him before they were yanked away. Okay, maybe Park wasn't the one you should be worried about. He hovered over you, shoulders back and chest puffed. You called to Park, distracting him momentarily from staring down others. "Choose whatever you need."
The selection was near bare, except for the essentials. He glanced back frequently as he selected his soap. You watched other owners with heir hybrids, they were selecting more than just bar soap. When he came back with a bar that was in a basic box you smiled at him, wanting to be sure to always encourage this behavior of making his own choice. "Are you sure?" He nodded and he immediately reverted to his guard stance. You asked him to place it in the cart and then you walked over to where the other hybrids and their owners just were and began picking the scarcest products off the shelf. It must mean they're good and popular.
"Yes?" You placed a bottle down as the side was dented and picked up one in better condition.
He looked between you and the products. "What are you doing, Miss?"
You glanced at him, "Do you like," you popped open the lid of the shampoo refreshed by the clean scent, "this one?"
He took it from you and placed it back on the shelf. "I'm fine."
You picked up the shampoo back and placed it in the cart and carried on. He sighed and followed along as you kept picking up things like a brush, fur shine conditioner, vitamin tablets, a loofah, and a toothbrush. He had remained quiet the whole time and as rounded the corner there was a very small selection of basic clothing. You recalled back to his confession earlier and the idea saddens you at your ignorance. It struck you that last night he must've slept in the same clothes he was in now. You held up sweats and a shirt up to him he stiffened as your hands were nearly touching him. You hummed when you were content with the sizing before you picked up more and placed them in the cart. Pointing to underwear and socks, "You can pick those yourself." He fidgeted on the spot as if he was glued. You decided to pinch a little, "Or do you want me to pick them?" He unglued himself from his spot and he tossed in a package of each reluctantly. You smiled at him at your small victory. This would have to do, for now, you'd order things online later.
He still stood protectively over you, but at some point, you had ignored the feeling of his hovering. You could feel how uncomfortable he was. Your hand itched to reach out and settle him, but you weren't sure how comfortable he would be with that either.
"You can have things to Park." You turned to him, with a softness that had him relaxing, "I'm happy to get it for you. I want to do this for you."
His tail wagged as you began carting away.
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Opening up your mailbox you pulled out the mail then shoved open the door with bags and mail in your hand. Waddling to the kitchen with the bags you set them down as Park came just behind you with his arms full of the remaining bags. The top of his head barely peeking above the bags. Your eyes widened as you helped him place the rest of the bags down. You could handle heavyweight, but you didn't want to accelerate joint pain and destroy the recovery you've made so far. He seemed completely unaffected though.
He stood patiently again as you turned to him, realizing he was awaiting a command. You cleared your throat as you grabbed bags. You found the bags holding his products. You handed them off to him. He hesitated as he nearly set the bags down, "Let me help. Tell me what to do."
You waved him away, "It's alright, I got it. Why don't you take a shower? I'm sure you feel gross after a long day. Do you need help figuring that out?"
Again, he found himself conflicted. He couldn't sense the duplicity in your tone. He waited for you to yell at him. Waited for you to shout commands, punish him for being useless, something, yet you stood up and stared at him with eyes that nearly smiled on their own. He was stunned at the way you looked at him. Gently you picked up his bags and handed it to him, "You can put your stuff away and the clothing you got on now put them in the wash. You remember from yesterday right? You can pick out just an outfit then the rest can go in the wash."
You shooed him off when he stood there dumbfounded. Taking your statement as final he picked up his bags and disappeared around the corner.
You sighed a bit in relief, an ache left in its wake. You hadn't realized how tense you were all day. Taking care of someone else was exhausting. The way he was looking at you was confusing. It was like he was expecting something, but you weren't sure what. Instead of dwelling on the what-ifs, you sorted all the groceries. It was odd seeing your home full of food. You never had this much food before. You always made instant food when it was just yourself. You folded all the plastic bags into one and placed them in a bin by the front door. Coming back you glanced around the kitchen, then picked up the mail.
You shifted through it as the majority of it was junk mail with a few exceptions of bills. Stuffing it into the wall rack for your mail you were cautious to separate the bills from junk.
Your phone begins vibrating in your pocket. You read the caller ID, 000, and your face hardened. You answered and a distorted voice spoke, "Report tomorrow at 0700 for a new assignment." There was a click and the call was over. Sighing heavily you tossed your phone on the counter uncaring if it cracked the screen. You leaned on the counter, elbowed supporting your head as you run your fingers through your hair. You clutched your head, breathing through your nose.
He came out of the corner, his hair slightly dripping wet as he toweled off his ears. His face scrunched up in disgust, it smelled sour. It was from you, clutching the towel he rounded the corner as you were standing back up. Your face was slightly flushed, and your eyes held this look of exhaustion. The smile had disappeared from you. He dropped his towel as he marched over to you, "Miss, is everything alright? Did I do something wrong? I knew I should've helped you. I'm—."
Your eyes widen in surprise as he nearly rushed you. Realizing your position you laughed it off, and quiet his resolve, although your voice isn't as strong as you wish it could've been. "No, I'm fine, It's fine." He didn't believe you as he carefully looked over your face.
You realized his hair was dripping. You picked up the towel from the floor and tiptoed slightly as you rustled the towel over his hair. "Don't walk around with wet hair, it's cold out. You can't be catching a cold." You were careful of his ears.
He froze on the spot.
When you pulled away, your smile had returned. He was staring directly at you, nearly inches apart, eyes wide. Your heart skipped a beat. You took in his jawline, tawny skin that was slowly turning rosy and his pupils dilating. Realizing your position and what you had done you dropping the towel and it draped over him like a ghost. He whined as you laughed going towards the fridge. You try to cover your embarrassment by acting normal, "Dry your hair with the dryer next time." You opened up the fridge, "Let's eat."
One ear popping out he pulled the towel back he stepped forward, "Let me help Miss." His cheeks were rosy, and you sure yours was too.
Surrendering to his eagerness your cave, "Okay."
Surprisingly Park was a great cook. You gave him simple instructions to cut vegetables and they were sliced and diced neatly. You thanked him as you slid them off into the pan. The house filled with the smell of stir fry and just in time the rice cooker jingled as you turned off the burner.
"Can you get some plates, please? It's in the left cabinet."
He nodded and set two plates beside you. With your good hand, you scooped food onto the plates. When they were filled, he took them to the table without propagation. You fished inside the fridge for some cold water and the drawers for utensils and brought that to the table with you.
Looking at the table with steaming plates Jimin stood by the table waiting for you. You set the water down and utensils and sat down. Your eyes glowed as you stared at the food. You picked up your fork and began poking at your food and shoved it in your mouth. You're a few bites in before you realized he was sitting across the table food untouched. He picked up his fork and began eating after you had taken your first bites.
You wanted to know more, you wanted to understand why. The report the Director gave was bare-bones, but you could inquire enough. You had been on a mission before countless times, analyzed war criminals, and more, but this felt out of reach. If you were going to keep Park then you wanted to know more. There was no better way of getting information than just asking. You swallowed your food then asked, "Park, may I ask you something?"
His body tensed slightly as he swallowed and answered formally, "Yes, Miss."
While shopping today you did your shallow research as you watched those with hybrids of their own. All hybrids had something around their necks, collars, like chokers around their neck. You casually inquired, "Do hybrids wear…collars?"
"It's a sign of identification and ownership."
You quirked your brow, "Do you have one."
He pulled out from his shirt dog tags on a silver ball chain. You nodded at it and kept poking at your food. The biggest question sitting at the tip of your tongue, but you couldn't ask it. Instead, you choose to look him over. "Do you like your new clothes? Do they fit right?"
He nodded rapidly, "Yes, Miss."
They looked comfortable as they fit him a bit oversized, but it would give him wiggle room.
He finished his meal and stood from the table taking it to the sink. You followed shortly after with your dish. He fidgeted on the spot before he thanked you for the meal. Shutting off the water and drying your hands on the towel rack you leaned against the counter.
He paused and robotically turned and stood at attention at the entrance of the kitchen. You looked down then back up at him, "New assignment—for us, meeting tomorrow at headquarters. Be up early."
His posture stiffens. As his hands began clutching at his sweatpants. He nodded then rounded about the corner slipping into his room.
You flicked off the kitchen light as you signed, why did that feel so heavy? You massaged your arm as you walked to your room. That night you laid in bed doing a bit of research on hybrid things. You browsed for a few hours shopping for things that others recommended. You bought clothes varying from dark in color to light unsure of where his palate was. You guess the size going for the larger size for safety and it possibly shrinking in the dryer. You'd rather him be comfortable than enclosed in his clothes. Checking out you bought a list full of things, but you don't spend your paycheck on yourself, so you placed it in your cart without a second thought. He deserved it.
You shut your laptop and thought about the hound sleeping in the next room over. Was he sleeping alright? You heavily sigh allowing your body to sink into your bed. You were going to have a long day tomorrow and you needed your sleep. Closing your eyes you had a million thoughts going, but the main one was of the hound in the room over.
You just had to hold out for tomorrow.
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"Your next mission agent is to be the personal guard the governor on his trip to the capitol from the airport. He will be arriving from the capital after receiving an acknowledgment from the president and we expect a lot of eyes to be on him."
Your blood boiled internally. This was a job meant for a mid-rank agent, not you. Yet, you tried to sound eager, "Yes, Sir."
He smiled, it felt so greasy. "Your mission starts in three months upon his arrival."
"Understood, Sir."
He looked towards Jimin who stood at the edge of the room at attention. The Director smiled, "Park, is Y/l/n treating you well?"
"I'm content Sir."
The Director looked at you, "I knew this was a great idea. You are much better off with him."
He stood up and you followed along clenching your jaw. "Thank you, Sir."
As you were walking away. "Agent Y/L/N."
You turned on your heel completely facing him. "No more mistakes."
Your face was hard set, yet pleasant enough. Park noticed your fist clenching as you crossed them behind your back.
"Understood Sir."
Park followed along silently. He could smell the change in your scent—it was ruining the sweetness. You stood in front of the elevators and pressed the down button. Park waited behind you, standing tall. He had no idea why you were uncomfortable. He found the Director behavior odd. What had he meant by making a mistake?
When the elevator opened you stepped in and immediately into the floor panel you punched in the code 45730 harder than necessary. For a second the elevator stalled, then it began dropping down. The elevator went beyond the parking garage basement as it continued to drop. Jimin's eyes watched, internally reading himself for anything.
Without saying anything you stepped out of the elevator he followed you to an internal door. You scanned your ID before you stamped your finger to go inside. Jimin scanned his dog tags and was allowed inside behind you.
As the door whorled open with an electrical buzzer sounding off, a sudden bang introduced you both to the gym. Flashes of light caught his attention as he looked into glass rooms. The rooms each were unique and technical as digital screens were projected in the air with stats while within the room holographic simulations of hostile scenarios played as agents trained. You kept marching like you were running to a fire. He only caught glimpses of the intense training going on, monitoring their movements in those split seconds. The arena opened up and agents were firing off in succession as they shot down the range. Seeing rows of stations, he realized you had brought him to a gun range.
You rotated your left shoulder. You stepped up to a station and placed your hand on top of the glass desk. The monitor glowed blue as a digital screen popped up. "Put your hand on the glass Park." He followed along, and the desk expanded into a dual station. His information appeared on the screen alongside yours. Selection of weapons appeared next, "Pick what you want to use."
He went through and selected a handgun like yourself. The proper wear appeared on the right wall of the station. The guns were simultaneously present from the walls.
After having the debriefing, you found yourself feeling wound up. You wanted to prove yourself again, prove you were good enough. The drudging task he gave you, protecting the newly elected governor, was for the rookies. Grabbing it you inspected it thoroughly. You shook out your left hand. The guns weren't typical, although they recoil, sound and weighed as much as a real one, they weren't.
You didn't meet eyes with Park as you spoke, "I'm sure you've done this before."
He had. Too many times to count. He had spent a lot of time in ranges, less modern than this. He remembers when he was a young pup and he stood at the other end of the rage facing the abysmal barrel. Officers commanded the older hounds with real guns. It was a miss and survive. A test for all.
He was brought to the present when the holographic screen began changing as infographics and widgets displayed difficulty levels, strategy, and intensity. Selecting a random high-performance program you reached over and pressed the approval for his side of the dual station to fully expand to accommodate you both. His eyes followed the station walls as they moved and widened a few feet. Your eye twitched as you brought your arms up finger away from the trigger as you tightened your hips.
"Ready yourself, Park."
Selecting random the widget flipped through until it stopped on the hostage situation. A short debriefing appeared on the screen, entailing the scenario. Your shoulders tightened, a thing you learned to never due, and the motion caused you to wince as you felt the muscle tug around your injury. You were fine. You were fine.
Situation: A bank robbery and the civilians inside and employees are being held, hostage. Save the hostages.
As soon as the countdown began on the screen from three, two, one, the bank doors opened, and fake comrades joined you both as you enter. Five criminals circulate the main lobby as they surround hostages piled in the middle. The simulation was interactive, and it expected you to act accordingly. Slipping into your roll you commanded, "Drop the weapons and get down!"
Park held his position as his gun was raised defensively mirroring your stance.
The criminals laughed simulated jargon of them arguing and they refused to place down their weapons. You repeated your commands and they still refused. You scanned the room again, analyzing the exits, windows, and corners, there weren't many options, but the desk offered refuge. Counting the seven hostages surrounded by the five criminals, the odds of getting the robbers away were slim. But the margin of possibility was where you thrived.
"Park, on my mark."
Just like you had predicted the robber facing you reacted hotly by grabbing a hostage and holding a gun to their temple. "I'll do it! I'll do it!"
You continued, "Release the hostage, no one has to get hurt. Put down your weapons!" You slightly nodded but Park had caught it as the mark.
The robber's hand trembled with anger before he threw the hostage and began unleashed rounds at you. Screams and sounds of chaos erupted. The other criminals began targeting the other commanders. Your eyes worked a million miles an hour as you dodged bullets moving forward behind the wall. Park was opposite of you, finding a shield in the opposing wall.
When the sound of gunshots paused you took the chance and shot at the criminals.
"Park, right!"
He let a few rounds out, both successful as they land their targets. The hostages scream and run towards you but disappeared as they simulate running past you.
A robber appeared next to you as you fired at their extremities. Death is never the goal, inebriation is. Assassination isn't a solution. The bank begins shifting into the warehouse as you panted, breathing faster and faster. Seeing the lone chair and a man with a gun pointed at you took form. A slow smirk built on their face as their finger shifted to be over the trigger and they pulled. You had been so lost in thought you forget what was going on. Suddenly you were pushed back as he stood in front of you. His side of the screen flashed red. He had been shot, kill shot to the chest
Your eyes widened and jaw dropped. "PARK, WHAT ARE YOU DOING!"
He turned to look at you over his shoulder, "Protecting you."
You gazed at him, shock filtered, again those words ring clear in your ears: hounds are disposable. Bile built in your throat. If this was real, he would've been dead. You failed Park. You…failed, again.
Panic filled your heart creeping like an icy cold grip and your hand began to tremble. Your face was stone cold, but inside a storm was brewing.
Boisterous laughter filtered through and broke you from your beginning hysteria. They snorted at the end of their sinister laughter, bringing their hand up to cover their mouth. You pulled your trembling hand behind you as you turned and Jimin looked over your shoulder.
Eyeing you up and down and then Park a snarky smirk plastered on her lips as they stride closer to you both. "Ah, Y/L/N, you finally got one." Her eyes stared at Park for a moment longer than necessary. Subtly you shifted yourself in front of him. "I see the Director finally recognized that you weren't perfect." Her lips pulled higher. Agent Smith had been in the federation longer than you have. Her father was from the same fraternity as the Deputy Director. She let everyone know proudly where she came from and how she knew people in high places. Instantly you were rivals after she opened her mouth. However, during training, she was one of your main motives for climbing the ladder. You were better than some rich girl with connections. Proudly you climbed to your position on your own, no family, no friends, just you.
It's always been that way anyway.
Finding yourself on steady grounds, pushing nausea aside, you smirked back sweetly. Setting your gun down, "I'm glad your back safe Smith. Your last mission was watching that rich girl from Montenegro, right? How was it playing a shopping assistant?"
Her smirk didn't deter. "Assistant? Please. At least I didn't fail. Daddy told me all about how the Director said you were a failure. You couldn't handle a simple rescue mission. Makes me concerned for the rest of us."
She cut deep and quick. Park next to you listened to it all, quickly glancing at you. He hadn't heard of this. He wasn't told why he was now your hound. He could feel you change though. It was unsettling him.
Quick on your feet, "The only concern you should have is if Daddy is going to buy you another spot on a mission. How much did your Daddy pay for your last mission?" It was petty. This was petty, out of character. Today wasn't your day.
Her face blistered with anger. "You bitch! I wish they left you in Victiz to die in that cell."
Park growled, a rolling growl. Her eyes widened in surprise like yours. Park's eyes were jet black, he appeared like a feral beast encroaching over you with his presence. His fangs were exposed as his lips pulled back. He made no motion forward, but Smith knew if she moved offensively, he would act. Realizing she was out of her reach, Smith flinched as she corrected herself rolling her eyes pretending it didn't bother her. You hadn't realized her hound was behind her. Stomping away she picked a station leaving you standing there with Park.
You hadn't realized her hound had been with her as he stared at you both with wide eyes.
"Cerberus." The name came shakily out of the hound, their doe eyes staring, body frozen. "Yo-you're alive." The word came out as a whisper. The hound didn't get say more as Smith snapped calling the hounds attention. Without another word, the hound booked it, tail between his legs.
Park watched the hound with careful eyes. Your mind was elsewhere, desperately swallowing anger. You turned back to the monitor as it blared out "Mission Failed." You were too embarrassed to look at him. You were ashamed of yourself. You had never acted that way. You never let her get under your skin. The last comment stung like a slap across your face. Who was this person you've become? You shut it down quickly, setting all things back appropriately.
"We're leaving." You commanded stiffly.
He watched you for a few moments as you held your left arm as you walked away. Setting his gear down he began after you.
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The house was dark, yet you didn't bother flicking on the lights as you took off your shoes in the entryway. The quiet ride home had let your though mull over. You were so disappointed with yourself. Words from the director, Smith, you could handle hers, but…Park, when he took the bullet for you—it was all too much. You were fatigued, your arm was ebbing in pain. "I'm going to sleep." Without further explanation, you rounded the corner and went into your room.
He stood there in the entryway, the darkness feeling suffocating as you walked away. He couldn't understand why you were so upset. He couldn't understand why you screamed at him when he took the bullet for you. Why was that woman yelling at you, he couldn't control it when she said you should die in that cell. He was going to protect you. You would never die as long as he was around. Where did he go wrong? If his ears could flatten, they would. If his tail could hide between his legs, it would be. He messed up, again.
He found his feet moving before he was aware of it. He wanted to reach out. His feet were moving fast until he felt a surging pain followed by a crunch on the hardwood floor. Retracting back he realized it was your ID. Picking it up he stared at it, the person in the ID looked so cold, so frigid, similar to how you looked now. It made his insides itch uncomfortably, it felt wrong. That you felt wrong.
Clutching it in his fist he walked through the darkness, eyes adjusted for it, and he stood in front of your door. He could hear your soft breathes, but your heart was beating fast. The tainted scent that was normally sweet was nearly rolling from under your door like smoke. He clutched your ID in his hand tight enough that the edge of the plastic badge dug into his skin.
Soft knocks rapped at your door. It took you a moment before you answered. Park was standing at the door staring at you directly. It felt like time had slowed before his fist unclenched and he held out your ID. You took it from him staring down at it. All your energy had been sapped from you and in barely a whisper, "Thank you."
His tongue poked through his thick lips as he opened his mouth but he clamped it shut quickly. He began turning on his heel heading back to his room.
"Park." Guilt ate at you.
He paused and turned robotically.
Clenching your ID. "I don't want you to ever take a bullet for me." His eyebrows perked. "You are not disposable, especially not because of me." You knew he had heard everything Smith had said. "I'm sorry you're in this mess. I'm sorry you're tied to me. Again, let me know if you want to leave, I'd understand."
You closed the door unaware of the sullen look on his face. The mask breaking for a crescent fallen expression. He moved at the speed of light catching the door before you closed it. The fire in his eyes raged like rumbling lava. He pulled it open fully as you stood there shocked. His posture was strong as the muscles bulged from underneath his shirt.
"Do you want me to leave?" Your mouth fell agape, caught off guard. Vulnerability bled through his words, yet it still sounded scripted, like a duty. But a part of you wanted to believe it wasn't just his duty. It was too quiet and panic began to fill Park's chest replacing the itch. "Please, don't make me leave. Please…I don't want to –I'm going to protect you until the end I promise, please, don't make me leave."
Your heart broke as you fought back tears. The harshness of his words hit you, especially as he punctuated the last three words. Although you had only been with him shortly, you didn't hate him. You had forgotten, selfishly belatedly realized how your behavior had a profound effect on him.
"Stay." You cleared your throat and spoke clearly, "You can stay."
It was silent between you both. He was trembling. His hands felt itchy again, that odd feeling he had of wanting to reach out instead he reverted to comfort. He resumed attention stance, "Yes, Miss."
"Y/n. Call me y/n. Don't call me Miss anymore."
His pupils dilated hearing your name for the first time. He had never called anyone by their first name before. He felt almost like he was committing treason, but he tested it anyway. "Y/n."
You smiled and nodded. That smile, that smile was now making his stomach itch again.
He fidgeted in his place, muttering, "Jimin…my name is Jimin."
The man, who often looked like he could crush iron with his fist, and gaze destroy a city with a blink, he looked like a puppy in front of you. You smiled. Without even realizing what you were doing you reached up and ruffled his hair.
His eyes were so wide. You pulled your hand back and retreated with a blush on your face after you realized what you had done. Your hands seemed to have a mind of their own. Quickly you sputtered out, "Sorry. Good night Jimin."
He wished you hadn't stopped. His tail was wagging a million miles per hour.
"Good night Y/n."
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| Masterlist | Final
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Copyright 2020 © by magicalsalamander. All rights reserved. 
2K notes · View notes
babybatscreationsv2 · 2 years
A King on a Leash ch12
Marvel | Starker
Tony Stark is a powerful man with a beautiful husband and a loyal crime family, but it looks like he didn’t keep his husband on a short enough leash. After turning Peter lose on a Cuban gang leader, Peter’s life is  in danger. The real trouble is that Tony now realizes that Peter is the  only thing in this world that he cares about and he never meant for that  to happen.
Sequel to A Doll on a String
Rating: Explicit
Full Fic
A Doll on a String
Warnings under the cut*
Warnings: daddy kink, mafia au, graphic torture
Fresh from the shower, Tony rubbed a towel against his wet hair. He sighed contentedly at his reflection in the foggy mirror. King of the world? Today he felt like it. Peter had gotten him everything he needed to handle Harry and open up access to areas of the city that had been closed to him for a decade. Natasha was zeroing in on 'Chili'. Toomes had finally shut his mouth about Peter. Everything was going his way. As it should.
He left the bathroom and got dressed, whistling as he went. He was standing in the mirror, fixing his tie, when Peter called him from downstairs.
"Coming, angel!" he called back. He checked himself out in the mirror, but paused when he heard voices in the living room. Slipping his gun into his jacket, he left the bedroom and hurried off to investigate. His heart skipped a beat and his hands went cold. There was one thing he hadn't thought to tell Peter about.
The guard who had escorted her in without calling him first was one thousand percent fired and he knew it by the look on his face. Yamile and Peter stood, staring each other down. Tony wasn't sure what to make of the stand off.
"You, out," he said to the guard. The young man bolted out the door. "Yamile, why are you here?"
"I'm sorry. I tried to call you, but I never got an answer. I needed to warn you." She was just hiding her panic and only managing thanks to years of practice.
Tony came to stand beside Peter, but the hostility rolling off him made him take a step back. "About what?" He bit his tongue as the word 'dear' threatened to roll of it.
She glanced between him and Peter. "Ricardo. Is it safe to talk here?"
"Of course it is," Peter spat. His arms crossed over his chest. Oh fuck, what did Yamile say that had him fired up? He stepped back to stand beside Tony, arms almost touching. Possessive in a way that made Tony burn for him.
Yamile nodded. She was a smart woman and probably realized she'd created a lot of trouble already.
"It was Richardo who sent men after you a few days ago at the restaurant, but if you haven't figured it out yet, they weren't Tiburones." She talked with her hands waving. "He's been buying men throughout the city. I don't know where he's getting the money, but he's cast a wide net. You can't trust anyone."
"I already don't."
She shook her head. "Some of them have been working for you for years. I have names." She reached into her pocket and pulled out a folded piece of paper. She held it out and Peter took it from her before Tony could touch it.
He was still seething. He was jealous. He doubted him. More than likely he wondered if Tony had cheated. He didn't know what she had said to him, but it must have been enough to clue him in that they had history. Yamile had come to help and her information was surely good, but that wasn't his priority. There was an easy solution. One that Peter would take himself in the same position. He reached into his coat and pulled out his gun. He looked at Yamile and pointed. Safety off, all there was to do was pull the trigger.
"Tony!" Peter called his name.
"Tony?" Yamile said. He watched her eyes fill instantly with horrified tears.
He looked at Peter. His face was distraught, anxious, conflicted. "Say the word, angel."
Peter shook his head. "It's okay. I know you didn't... I trust you."
Trust. Tony didn't trust anyone. He was only just beginning to truly trust Peter. Trust, that was right up there with love, devotion, commitment. All the things he had never had nor deserved. Yamile had offered him those things when he wasn't ready. She represented his own short comings, his doubts. He supposed that was why it would be so easy to kill her. But he expected Peter's obedience, maybe just this once he could give it back and stay his hand for Peter's sake.
He lowered his gun.
Peter came closer. His hand touched his shoulder, then the other came to rest of his chest. He looked into his eyes. He didn't see pain or jealousy there. Only concern. Tony dipped his head and kissed Peter's forehead.
"Okay," he said.
Yamile sobbed, a hand pressed to her mouth. Tony was shocked. Yamile was always hard as a rock and yet he'd shattered her. It hurt a little to realize that she had trusted him and he'd broken that. He'd sacrificed her trust for Peter. He was always so concerned with Peter that he was risking making an enemy of her. A real dumbass move considering she had connections to the Tiburones.
"He's been testy lately," Peter told Yamile, working his charm to clear the air. "He's not sleeping." He pushed the paper into Tony's hand and went to her. With a gentle hand, he led her to the sofa and poured her a drink from the cart.
Tony shook his head. How easily he moved from scorned lover to Tony's most valuable soldier had him in awe. They could talk about Yamile later and Peter was more than capable of understanding that. He could put Tony, the family, the greater good first. When had Tony lost the ability to do that?
He looked at the note in his hand, carefully unfolding it. It was a punch to the gut to see the names that were listed there. Most of them had been around long enough for Tony to remember them. Some were newer. He pulled out his phone and snapped a picture. He sent it to Happy.
Traitors, he sent next. Happy would know what to do.
He looked at Peter sitting next to Yamile on the sofa. She had already recovered and they were smiling as they had their drinks. Peter told her the story of the time he had dropped another dancer he was supposed to be catching and how this triggered a chain of events that ended with a punch bowl dumped on his head. Tony wondered if she laughed because he was charming or because she knew it was life and death for him to like her.
He crossed the floor to join them, standing in front of the couch. "It's handled. Thank you, Yamile."
She nodded, mouth pulling into a somber line. "Glad I could help."
"If you hear anything else-"
"I'll call next time," she said, standing and fiddling with her jacket. "Maybe you could do me a favor and pick up your phone."
"I'll make sure Steve knows you're to be watched. Can't be sure no one saw you here."
"Oh, someone always does. When someone truly wants you dead, they can afford to have eyes everywhere."
Peter stood and offered Yamile a hand to escort her out. Tony stuffed his own hands into his pockets. He stood and waited for Peter to return. When he did, Peter brushed past him to sit again on the sofa. He didn't invite Tony to sit beside him.
"Who is she?"
Tony's face burned with shame. Nothing he was about to say was going to sound any sort of good, but he had nothing to hide so he would answer any question Peter put to him. "Yamile is an old friend. We dated for a while. Sort of. It's been twelve years since then."
"Sort of?"
Tony took a breath. "Remember what I said before? About buying you gifts, making you feel like you owe me? That wasn't a lie. I was like that for a long time. Yamile was one of them."
"Cares about you more than someone you bought gifts for," he pointed out. He crossed his legs and brushed his hand down his thigh.
"Yamile fell in love with me. When she told me, I panicked. I pushed her off on Steve and left her. Now she's one of his girls."
"His prostitutes," Peter said.
"So you went to visit a prostitute?"
Tony huffed. "I didn't go to visit her."
He looked at him very pointedly. "She said that she hadn't heard from you in weeks and that the last time she saw you that you didn't seem worried enough about the danger you were in so she came to check on you."
"Yes, I saw her. I had business to handle at Steve's place. A man stepped out of line and I went to handle it. She saw me there and she wanted to talk so I heard her out."
Peter was still bristling, but Tony could see that he heard him. "When?"
"A few days after you got back. I brought you cookies, remember?" Internally, he flinched at how bad that sounded. Like he'd done something wrong and the cookies were an unspoken apology.
"And you never told me?" Tony really didn't like how good Peter was getting at his poker face. He almost couldn't tell how angry he was, how hurt.
"I was still keeping you in the dark about how bad it was. I didn't want to scare you, remember? I wasn't hiding Yamile from you, I was avoiding talking about Ricardo."
Peter took a long breath. He didn't meet his eye. Tony approached the couch as if walking up to a pacing tiger. He knelt on the floor and put his hand on Peter's knee. He couldn't have been too mad because Peter didn't stop his hand from covering Tony's.
"I would never, ever, betray you Peter. Anyone but you, you know they're as good as dead. All you have to do is snap your fingers. I wasn't kidding about killing Yamile. If you want her gone I'll find out who's driving her home and have her driven off a cliff instead. That what you want?"
"No, Tony." He finally looked down at him. His other hand touched his face. Tony pressed against his palm. His eyes closed. Forgive me, please, he pleaded in his mind.
"It's okay. I believe you."
Tony remembered how to breathe. He caught Peter's hand and kissed it. The back, then his palm, then up the length of his arm. His hand cupped the back of his neck and he pressed kisses to his bare throat. He climbed up to straddle his lap, pressing kisses everywhere, hands caressing every inch of his skin, like an act of worship. Peter's hands rested on his thighs, soaking it up.
"Daddy," he sighed. Tony smiled.
"That's right, angel. Your daddy. No one else matters."
Peter smiled up at him. His hands held his face. "I think you might be a little bit obsessed with me."
"I'm good with that." He bent and kissed him, closed mouthed, sweet. The contact more important than the pleasure. Tony stood and scooped Peter up into his arms. Peter smiled, wrapping his arms around his neck. He carried him up to the bedroom and laid him down in the bed, crawling in beside him. Peter laid his head on his chest and Tony ran his fingers through his soft hair.
The relief he felt was immense. Nothing mattered more than Peter's love and somehow he'd managed to keep it. There was still the matter of the traitors Yamile had uncovered. Almost certainly she had missed some, but there would be time to find out exactly who. How many of his men had betrayed him?
"Do you feel safe here?" Tony asked.
"Hm?" Peter hummed, sounding as if he might have been on his way to sleep. Tony smiled. He was so sweet like a contented kitten after making his daddy roll over and beg for his forgiveness. He couldn't blame him for it.
"Why wouldn't I feel safe?"
"You know I can only protect you so far."
"I think you can do more than you believe. And besides, I told you already. This is my fault. If I fucked up and I have to pay for it then I will."
"I won't let that happen."
"Then what will you do to stop it?"
Tony thought, playing with Peter's hair. He could send him away. He still owned an old family property in Italy. An old farmhouse that had been his great-great-grandfather's. It was humble compared to what they had, but it would be far from the Tiburones. But he would have to stay to handle things. Unless he asked Pepper to give up her wedding planning to handle it for him. There was another way, though. Maybe he couldn't end this feud just yet, but he could make sure none of his men thought to cross him.
He gave a little tug to Peter's curls. The younger man turned over to look up at him.
"I know just what I'll do," he purred. Anticipation was already burning under his skin.
Peter smiled, far too pretty and sweet for the moment. "That's my man."
The backseat of that car was way too hot considering they were barely touching each other. Well, Peter was groping his cock through his pants, but Tony figured his angel deserved a treat after the emotional roller coaster he had just put him through. So he let his baby play. Tension burned between them, but Tony wasn't going to let Peter distract him. Business came first this time. Even if his lips were swollen red and the smell of his skin was all over him and he couldn't stop thinking about how good he felt.
Happy had rounded up the majority of the traitors before they realized what was happening. He'd had them taken to an empty factory that Bucky used to use for arms deals. The rest were being hunted down by his Capos. There were eighteen in total and ten of them were waiting for them. The remaining eight wouldn't receive merciful deaths either. No one, especially not family, threatened his Peter.
They entered the factory floor and found the ten traitors, in a variety of states. Some were unconscious, others struggling to get free, some hog tied and others tied to chairs. For every bound traitor was a dozen more of Tony's men. They nodded in respect as he entered the room. There was anger in their eyes to match Tony's own. He smiled. What a beautiful family he'd built. What a beautiful family he'd provided for his Peter. Loyal and outstandingly vicious.
"So glad you all could make it," Tony called to the room. His boys all chuckled.
"We got them warmed up for you, sir," a man called out.
"Good. Men like these deserve special care." He reached into his pocket and curled his fingers through the loops of his brass knuckles. The first man he reached cowered in his chair. Tony grabbed his by his shirt and held him in one hand. He babbled, begging, tears in his eyes. Tony could only imagine Peter, tied up like this, life in danger and out of his reach. He swung his arm and nailed him in the face. His nose crushed inward and twisted to one side. He screamed with a mouthful of blood. Tony kept hitting him, driven madder by the screaming, until he was unconscious. Slumped in the chair, he barely breathed.
Peter stepped up beside him. He put his gun to his forehead and finished him off.
"Such mercy."
"We have so many to play with. This is just the first." Peter looked around the room. Tony admired the horror and panic on their faces. They looked at Peter like he had crawled out their closet in the middle of the night.
"You're right, angel. Which one is next?"
Peter stepped around the gore to walk among the traitors. He hadn't worn his signature white, but it was just as well. He had stood too close and his clothes were blood-spattered. He stopped in front of his chosen target. His eyes had an endearing sparkle to them.
"This one looks like he might have a heart attack if we don't finish him soon."
He was one of the ones who was gagged and laying on the floor. Someone had bound him tight enough that his arms had gone purple. Tony came to stand beside Peter.
"You want him first?"
Peter kissed his cheek so sweetly. "Show them all what you'll do to them if they endanger me."
Tony gave him a small smile. "Stand back, sweetheart."
The man's screams were wretched as Tony kicked in his ribs. He tried to crawl away and Tony stomped his legs until it the bone snapped. Tony was just debating if it was worth it to keep kicking him, watching him cough up mouthfuls of blood, when Peter pressed against his back. His mouth was hot against his neck. His hands slid over his chest. So he kicked in his remaining ribs. Tony wasn't sure if he drowned or suffocated.
"That's very distracting, sweetheart."
"Well, if you have to take a break to get your dick wet, who's going to stop you?" Peter rubbed his crotch against his ass. His hands slid down, first finger and thumbs framing where his cock was perking up in answer to his husband's arousal.
Tony turned and caught him around the waist. He pressed his lips to his neck. "Is it a pavlovian response to blood or?"
Peter smiled. "I like watching you go, what should be, 'way too far' to protect me. And this display you're putting on is sure to remind our family that they aren't just family, but they're in it for life." What a pretty way of saying that they were at their mercy. That Tony was more than capable of killing them painfully if they were disloyal. He had always run things on a combination of fear and respect. Today, they had chosen fear.
Tony trailed his lips up Peter's neck and looked into his eyes. Peter brushed their lips together.
"No one can stop you," he whispered.
"You could."
Peter held his face. "I wouldn't, though. Not for this. I'm yours. To have or to break or to protect." It was funny to think that he had found a way to protect him, to be good enough for him, in killing his own men. Even if they were traitors.
He spoke against Peter's soft lips, brushing against them with every syllable. "I'm going to break them all to pieces. For you."
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The better to taste you with, sweetheart
(Hayffie trick-or-treat 🧡 🔥 NSFW. Sexual content. Thanks @chocolateshipcookieblog for the prompt. This fic is a bit all over the place, but so is Halloween, so I just went with what came up. District 12 started feeling a little like Stars Hollow, so I kind of embraced that too. Now I can’t look at a lollipop without picturing it in Effie’s mouth, and I’m not complaining 🍭. Writing this was fun and touching.)
A fire burned in a wood stove in the corner of the Hob where people gathered for the town hall meeting. The large brick building held the chill of early autumn. Effie shivered, regretting her decision to wear only a sweater rather than a coat. She huddled close to Peeta. Sae’s granddaughter held Effie’s hand in a childlike way, swinging her arm periodically. Effie didn’t mind the connection with the unusual woman who was her neighbor now. That evening she appreciated the warmth of her hand.
“I told ‘em they were buildin’ this place too big,” Greasy Sae said matter-of-factly, not caring if the mayor or anyone in particular heard her or not. “A body gets cold in here no matter the size of the crowd.”
“Sure beats the heat in summer,” a man behind them said.
Effie peered over her shoulder and recognized him as one of the spice traders. “Spice” was a term used loosely in 12 to refer to dried roots, stems, bulbs, barks, and herbs, including tabacco and cannabis.
“Summer gets real hot.” He glanced at Effie from her forehead to her shoulders, then his eyes shot back up without gazing further. It was a look she knew well now. In 12, no one in his right mind stared wantonly at Haymitch’s girl, at least not openly, even when they were drunk or stoned.
The town hall had drawn a decent size crowd. More folks started showing up at those meetings once the council stopped hosting them every month and switched to quarterly. The people of each district had representatives and a governor, but those positions dealt with broad political issues, leaving local issues to be facilitated by a mayor and a town council.
It was Effie’s first autumn since letting go of her apartment in the Capitol, and Peeta was a dear to be joining her that night since she hadn’t wanted to go alone. She figured the only way she’d stop feeling like an outsider in 12 was to walk the line awhile between being present and being nonintrusive. She had a lifetime of experience walking lines much finer and more perilous than that one, so the task suited her.
The Hob filled with the fragrance of coffee brewing. People in attendance sipped mugs of it and devoured the muffins Peeta brought, baked with fruit from pawpaw trees. Katniss had encountered a grove of them in the woods. The fruit dropped in late summer and early fall, and Katniss gathered up what she found after hunts.
The mayor called the meeting to order and proceeded with the usual agenda: reconstruction updates, old business, new business, and so on. Effie was fairly bored until some new business sparked her interest.
“Since last year’s revival of All Hallows’ Eve was well received,” the mayor said, “The council invites all to attend this year’s festivities which will be held on the last night of October. We’ll have a bonfire again at the meadow’s edge to honor the departed. In the first two hours after sunset, everyone is encouraged to participate in the ancient tradition of guising.”
“Guising?” Effie murmured the question to Peeta.
He whispered back, “Dressing up in costume — mostly creatures from old stories. And going door to door after dark for treats — sweet foods, coins for children, liquor for adults.”
Costumes, sweets, money, alcohol... that sounded to Effie like regular living in the old days of the Capitol. But this tradition, one night each year under the cover of darkness, was something unique. In the Capitol they’d only celebrated national holidays.
The mayor continued, “Spread the word... anyone planning to offer treats, please remember to light a lantern or a candle on your doorstep in order to avoid the — confusion — we had last year.”
“Confusion?” Effie quietly asked Peeta again.
“Pranks on people who were home but not answering their doors: knocking late into the night, tossing a few eggs at windows, minor mischief.”
Effie could guess who probably refused to answer his door. This year that was going to change if she had anything to say about it, which of course she did.
On the last evening in October, Haymitch slouched on the sofa in front of a fire with his feet propped up on the coffee table. The flames burned low, but he felt too lazy to add another log. He reached instead for his glass of whiskey.
He could already hear people gathering near the meadow. Bonfire, music, dancing... traditions to honor the dead. Folks were saying that a long time ago All Hallows’ Eve was celebrated as some “sacred” night when the “veil between worlds” is thin and the dead are close. Katniss had a few memories of her father telling *ghost* stories that his mother used to sing about. The old lady had been a strange one for sure. To Haymitch it all seemed like load of horse shit since “dead” meant decayed to bones, then nothing and gone forever.
“Traditions” for Haymitch had always meant the ones that happened under Snow’s control. Reaping Day had been the big “holiday.” Work paused and citizens dressed up. Those were government orders. Eventually people shamed their neighbors who didn’t stop working and didn’t wear nice clothes. They no longer needed government to do the punishing about not following traditions because people did it to each other. Families whose children didn’t get reaped celebrated quietly, behind closed doors, reserving special food for the occasion if they could afford to do so. *Holiday traditions* didn’t sit well with Haymitch.
“Manners!” Effie scolded as she approached from the kitchen and saw his bare feet on the coffee table.
“Loosen your corset. There’s a coaster right here.” He said it without looking at her.
Not wanting to start an argument just then, she bit her tongue as she moved toward the fireplace. “I’m not wearing a corset tonight.”
His peripheral vision caught a flash of red, and he turned to watch her. She wore a velvet cloak buttoned down the front. She pulled off a long satin glove before grabbing a log to throw on the fire.
His eyes passed over her from head to toe then back up again. “What’s this?” he asked, with a smile on his face.
She slipped her glove back on and confronted him with her hands on her hips. The hood of her cloak was pulled up, and her hair peeked from beneath, framing her face in blonde curls. Her makeup was light, apart from her lipstick which was as crimson as blood.
“My costume, for guising.”
His expression was a mix of intrigue, amusement, and irritation.
“I told you weeks ago that we’re going, and I mean it! Posy’s already on her way over here. I’m paying that girl a small fortune to hand out cookies and quarters and whiskey, so Hazelle doesn’t have to wash dried egg off YOUR window panes tomorrow like Peeta said she had to do last year.”
“Whiskey?! I didn’t agree to give out liquor to freeloaders.”
“Everyone is doing it. You’ll be receiving as much as you’re giving away.” Effie sat beside him on the couch, crossing her legs so the cloak parted near the fur-lined hem where she’d left a couple of buttons unfastened. Above knee-high boots, her thighs were covered in lace stockings.
“You’ll be wearing that?” His mouth watered for treats other than food and drink.
“All evening.”
He reached out to her thigh, but she smacked his hand before he could touch her.
“What the hell!” He sat up straight, aroused by the sting of the slap as much as by her appearance.
“You get to touch me when we’re out of the house, not before!”
“That’s extortion.”
“That’s PATIENCE... and holiday spirit!” She softened the blow by adding, “...I’ll be touching you too — if you want.”
Yeah, I want. “No corset? Hmmm. So what are you wearing under that cloak?”
“You’ll see tonight — after we visit everyone, and we’re home.”
“That’s more extortion!”
“That’s more patience.”
“And what am I supposed to wear?”
“It doesn’t matter, honey. With me dressed like this, they’re not going to be looking at you.”
Twilight was fading, and the last trace of blue drained from the sky. Effie had never seen more stars than she did when looking up from the clearings of 12. She slipped a flat round disk of hard candy from a wax paper sleeve and held it up by its wooden stick.
“Shine the lantern on it,” she directed, “I want to see the color.”
The lantern swung casually at Haymitch’s side. He didn’t lift it up. “Why’d you insist on us bringing this thing when we could each be using a flashlight? Or better yet, sitting at home where there’s electricity. Or lying in bed pretending we’re not home.”
“If we’re in bed, then people coming to the door are going to know we’re home. I wouldn’t be quiet, and you’d wind up smothering me with a pillow.”
“That sounds accurate.”
“Besides, where’s your sense of adventure?”
“Too dark to find it.”
“What’s too dark — the night or you?”
She stopped walking, and he followed suit. With him it was always easier to catch flies with honey. She slid the basket of gathered treats over her wrist. It was growing heavy with pastries, fresh and dried fruits, nuts, and confections like taffy from the sweet shop in the Hob.
She reached above the zipper of his coat and stroked the hollow between his collarbones. “I like the darkness in you.”
“Flattery will get you nowhere when I’m freezing my ass off.” Her fingertips were warm, red satin against his throat. The gloves stretched from her hands to her elbows. When she’d pulled them on earlier that evening, he wanted her to touch him right then.
“Let’s see...” She moved her hand away. When he was about to protest, she nestled her body against his and slipped her gloved fingers beneath his coat, into the back waistband of his pants. “Your ass is still here, and it’s not frozen.”
She teased his flesh without grasping, drawing him out with her, not home for sex. He felt the difference. If he wanted something now other than this “guising” nonsense, then he’d need to do some coaxing of his own.
He encircled her waist with one arm and murmured against her temple. “Why do you need a lantern when you can just taste the thing?”
With her hand in his pants, her mind started spinning things she wanted to taste. The heels of her boots brought her mouth up close to his. He smelled like the wool hat and sweater he’d dug out from the cedar chest, the ale they’d been given at the previous house, and bites of chocolate.
“What ‘thing’ would I be tasting?”
“That lollipop ...unless you have something else in mind.”
Even as she clenched the thin wooden dowel, she’d forgotten it. “A lick would be good...” She touched the tip of her tongue to the corner of his mouth. “...But maybe I’ll need to suck on it awhile.”
Reluctantly she slipped out from the warmth of him and pulled away, transferring the basket of treats back to her hand.
He lifted the lantern, otherwise it would have been too dark to watch her suck on that stick of candy, and he sure as hell wasn’t going to miss that.
She opened her mouth slowly and met the lollipop with her tongue, then lingered a moment before drawing the candy inside. She pursed her lips around the stick, and her cheeks sucked in. Her tongue moved side to side awhile, savoring the flavor. When she pulled the stick out, her lips were still puckered. The candy followed, glistening in the lantern light.
Her mouth turned up at the corners. “It’s okay to blink now,” she said.
He cleared his throat. “So how does it taste?”
“Find out for yourself.”
She held out the lollipop, but he didn’t take it. Instead he wrapped his hand, gloved in leather, around her satin-clad one. He tugged her toward him, and tasted her. She was sticky sweet, like white sugar sprinkled over warm berries.
The kiss sent the sweetness coursing through her. Her breath came out in a rush over his tongue. He felt it everywhere.
“Damn, Effie. Let’s go home. I wanna take off your cloak. I can hardly feel anything with these gloves on.”
He was tempting, but she steeled herself against temptation. “Not yet. We haven’t been to the mayor’s house or the bonfire.”
“The bonfire? Shit. You didn’t say anything about that.”
“It was implied.”
In the lantern light, she watched him scowl.
“Implied...” she leaned in again and murmured against his neck, “...Like the sex we’ll be having later. I didn’t say anything about doing that either, but you know we will.”
“Fine. ...While I’m waiting, feel free to keep sucking on that candy.”
Effie slid the basket over her wrist again, laced her fingers with his, and enticed him with the lollipop between her lips as they strolled on.
“Ah, what do you know! It’s Haymitch Abernathy, out on All Hallows’ Eve. Effie, you’ve accomplished a miracle.” The mayor poured them each a cupful of brandy.
“This is WONDERFUL, Taylor. It’s the council that’s accomplished a miracle.” Effie sipped the drink. The ability to make small talk with anyone was a long rehearsed part of her skill set.
“You are dazzling in red. Why don’t you wear that color more often?”
“I save it for special occasions.”
“Haymitch, who are you supposed to be? ...The woodcutter?”
“I’m pretending to be a nice guy.” He downed the brandy in a single gulp.
“Ah, a wolf in sheep’s clothing! Well, ‘nice guy’ looks much better on you than the *grumpy old man* costume you wore last year.”
“Very funny...”
Effie half-expected the words to be followed by a snide “sweetheart.”
The mayor dropped a brown paper package tied with blue ribbon into Effie’s basket of treats. “Fudge. From the sweet shop. After last year’s pumpkin explosion, I’ve sworn off baking.”
“When I visit Peeta or Sae’s kitchens, they make me sit on a stool and drink coffee.”
“That’s not a bad deal.”
“I agree.”
The mayor glanced around, then whispered, “Truth be told, I overcooked the pumpkin intentionally, figuring I’d be spared future requests for baked goods. But the explosion was a surprise.”
“My lips are sealed.” Effie finished her drink, and they handed the glasses back to the mayor.
“I’m heading to the bonfire. How about you two?”
“We were just about to—“ Effie started, but Haymitch interrupted with his hand on her back.
“—make another stop. Maybe we’ll see you later.”
“What other stop?” she asked when they were walking on the road again.
He slid his hand up her back and grasped the nape of her neck, caressing her through the velvet. “I didn’t get all *dressed up* tonight to spend time with the mayor. I wanna be with you.”
She wrapped her arm around him and hooked her thumb on his waistband. “I want to be with you too. It’s almost too bad there are people crawling all over town tonight.“
“Come here.” He lead her around the side of the Hob.
“I am NOT making out with you behind the dumpster!”
“Keep going. I know what you like and what you don’t.”
The back of the building was steeped in shadow. There were a couple of pallets stacked high with wood for the stoves. He lead her along the narrow passage between them to a spot sheltered under the eaves.
He took the basket from her hands and set it on the ground along with the flickering lantern. She smiled as she backed up against the brick wall. “Do you bring all the girls here?”
“Just you... Red.” He pulled off his gloves and dropped them beside the basket. “I’m done waiting to touch you.”
He held her hips and pulled her lightly against him. One hand shifted to the small of her back. The other brushed her bottom lip with his thumb. The crimson color lingered elsewhere now, on the rims of unwashed liquor glasses and a discarded lollipop stick. Her lips parted, naked and soft.
“I want this mouth on me.”
“Where, honey?” She was already inching down the zipper of his coat.
“You choose.”
She snuggled against his sweater. His body was warm and hard, and she immediately wanted more than what she felt was accessible in the shadow of the Hob.
Her hands touched him first before her mouth. Satin fingertips traced around his coat collar, pushing it low. She sucked the tendons on the side of his neck, up to his jaw and back. Then she bit down.
He flinched, groaning in a mix of pain and pleasure. He gripped her wrists, holding her against him rather than pushing her away. “Is that how you want to play this?”
“Uh huh,” she mumbled against his neck, kissing gently now. “I’m making some marks. Everybody in this town is treating me like I’m *yours*. If that’s how it’s going to be, they should know you’re mine too.”
“I haven’t been telling ‘em anything.”
“They know it just the same.” She plucked kisses like a rope around his throat, then bit him on the other side.
He let it all happen, anticipating the sensations, and flinching again. He nudged her against the wall, letting her feel what she was doing to his body. “You know, I can get you off right here,” he said.
The same force that spent a decade pulling her to 12 was tugging at her now. Everything inside her melted like that lollipop in a mouthful of hot brandy. The temptation was too much. “We have to be quick. Anyone might find us.”
“So what? If they see you fucking me, that’ll offer ‘em more clarity about us than you biting up my neck.”
“Haymitch, there are children!”
“So we’ll keep our clothes on and stay quiet... mostly. No kids are gonna be scarred — not even you, sweetheart.” He toyed with the top button of her cloak.
“How do YOU want to play this?” she asked.
“I wanna see you.” He unhooked the buttons, keeping his eyes fixed on hers, waiting to take in the sight of her all at once, whatever it might be.
After the last button was unfastened, she didn’t wait for him to open her cloak. She did it herself.
Damn... She’d been walking all over town wearing nothing under that thing except a white neglige and a thong. Both were made of some sheer fabric that hid little to nothing of her. The thin silk straps around her hips matched the ones over her shoulders.
“Effie...” He wanted her. Every bit of her. And he knew the thing that people had been thinking was true. She had him. Nothing was changing that, unless he drank himself to death, or she left him — whichever came first. Later, when more blood was flowing to his brain, he might be afraid of that awareness. But for now he was hers.
“Surprise.” She beamed. “You better come closer, or I’m going to be the one freezing my ass off.”
His arms went around her within the cloak, and he crushed her against him, taking in the sensations of her with his hands and mouth.
Her palms skimmed up his back under his shirt. “Closer...” she urged.
“You first.”
She’d spent a long portion of her life in gloves. Her fingers were nearly as dexterous within fabric as they were bare. She opened his pants and pulled his dick into her hands, working him between her palm and fingers. He thought about letting her make him come like that. But he wanted to be inside her.
His hands were warm when they slipped into her thong, bracketing her with fingers in her folds and spiraling just above. When he touched her, everything quickened. She stroked him with insistence and moved against his hands with rapid cadence.
Far too much noise was coming from her throat. “Where’s that pillow so I can smother you?” he teased.
“Just fuck me,” she pleaded, “Now before we’re arrested.”
He untangled his hands from her thong. She lifted one of her legs, and he hiked it up in the crook of his elbow, flattening his palm against the wall. The heels of her boots brought her up to a perfect height to fuck like this. She slid her thong to the side, and he dipped within her — plunging, stirring. She met his thrusts with her own.
He clutched her waist and pressed her against the bricks, commanding stillness. “Don’t move your hips.”
“What!” she huffed, “Fuck you, Haymitch! I’m so close.”
“PATIENCE,” he teased with her inflection in his voice, “Wait for it, and it’ll be better. You know I’m right.”
She knew.
He was close too. She was all satin and velvet inside and out. Her breasts brushed against his sweater. It was so much.
She was crying out, and “Shhh” was accomplishing nothing. He covered her mouth with his palm. His pinky pressed against her nostrils. She could breathe, but barely. They’d played this game before. Adrenaline surged through her body as she came undone. She clung to his neck as her thighs shook. Her whimpers passed through the closed slits between his fingers. Her eyes were wild in shadow, never leaving his.
“I know, honey. I’m right here... Oh, fuck. I know... Goddamn it... Effie...” He heard her name several times as he climaxed. He must have been the one saying it, since his hand was still covering her mouth.
When he let go of her, she sucked in the night air, still clutching his neck. She was high. So high like this.
“Are you okay?” He panted.
She caught her breath. “The mayor, Greasy Sae, the damn spice trader, they’re all right... I’m yours. I just am. It’s like breathing. Even when it’s hard to do, I’m still yours.” — It was the closest she would come to a declaration of love.
Her words moved through him like the music he heard in the distance. He was chuckling, not knowing exactly why. Release mostly. The lantern flickered near their feet. The hood of her cloak had slipped back, and her curls were stretching into wisps, fatigued like his body. She was so beautiful.
“I’m pretty sure my neck is bleeding now, so apparently that makes me yours too.”
“Oh...” Oxytocin was working its magic, and she filled with empathy. She pushed the coat off his shoulders so she could see. Her teeth marks were there, but no blood was dripping. She slapped his chest. “You’ll live.”
They pulled apart far enough to put themselves back into a semblance of order: readjusting, covering, zipping, and buttoning up. Then he held her until she was warm enough to move out again into the night.
They returned to the road, rather than cutting through the meadow. Yeah, “dead” meant decayed to bones, then nothing and gone forever, but Haymitch still didn’t want to be walking across a mass grave, no matter how thick the grasses were growing, no matter that flowers would pop up in spring.
Effie felt the energy of the evening diffusing. Sparks from the bonfire floated away on the breeze with red maple leaves. Haymitch carried her basket in the crook of his elbow where her leg had been settled a short while before. In that same hand he held the lantern. Both of her arms wrapped around his free one, the way he held her sometimes in sleep.
That night, children who had never known the Games wore their blankets around their shoulders to be heroes or over their heads to be ghosts. They cuddled their blankets in their arms as they grew tired and snuggled against their parents, or whoever they had left to love them. Effie’s Nana had held her like that, once upon a time. Many years passed before she experienced again that quality of feeling.
She squeezed Haymitch’s arm tighter, and her eyes filled with tears. If someone had asked her all the reasons why, she couldn’t have told them. Some emotions are too layered to translate into words on cards. They’re unexplainable to an audience of even one.
She paused. “Let’s go home.”
“No bonfire?”
“Not tonight.”
“Okay. Ain’t nothing there that you and I don’t already have right here.” — It was the closest he would come to a declaration of love.
Whether they were taking the path of pins or the path of needles was irrelevant. The thing they had — the one that drew him out and filled her up —was always leading them the same place.
“Let’s stop first at the kids’ porch.” Effie added, “Peeta told me he was dressing up in Katniss’s hunting jacket, and he was going to try to wrangle her into wearing one of his aprons.”
“That I’d like to see... But don’t go getting any ideas.”
“Don’t worry. I wouldn’t be caught dead in that hat of yours, and there’s no way I’m letting you borrow this cloak.”
“The mayor did say I look dazzling in red,” he joked.
“Well, I wouldn’t want to disappoint the mayor. ...I’ll let you wear my lipstick.”
“Only if you kiss it onto me then kiss it right off again.”
Some *traditions* might not be so bad after all.
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canceled dates
summary: when you have a blind date planned Brett decides it’s time for him to finally make a move.
warnings: n/a
word count: 2.1k
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It had been nearly three months since you had taken a job for the New York Rangers as their social media representative, basically meaning you advised them on what to post on the team page. Since you had moved to the city basically on your own, you didn't really know anyone and spent the first couple of weeks solo. Thankfully, since you went on road trips with the teams, they seemingly adopted you into their group and it wasn't long before they were your closest friends.
But today was your day off, and you had planned to do nothing more than sit around your cramped apartment and watch television. Well, that was the plan until your neighbor and closest friend—who wasn't the team—told you that you would be going on a blind date. You had originally protested the idea until she made you give her one good reason why you couldn't go. Since you weren't even willing to address your own feelings towards one of the team members, you were left with no option but to agree to meet the mystery boy at the restaurant.
You were in the process of making a sandwich for lunch when the music blasting from your phone's speaker stopped and the sound of it ringing took its place. Your heart skipped a beat when you read the caller ID, biting your lip as you answered and put him on speaker so you could continue to make your food.
"Hey, Brett." You grinned, despite the fact that he couldn't see you. You couldn't help it, he was possibly the most attractive boy you had ever laid your eyes on, and you swore his smile could light up any room. Out of all the players on the team, he was the one you hung out with the most outside of the rink. You couldn't help grow feelings for him, he was too much of a sweetheart for you to handle at times.
"Hey, what're you doing right now?" His smooth voice was heard through the phone and you couldn't stop the feeling of your chest warming at his question. It was so simple and he probably asked his friends that a dozen times a week, but to you it meant that he was thinking about you—and that meant you started to get your hopes up once more.
"Just hanging out at my apartment, what else would I be doing on my day off?" You joked. You swore you could hear the smile in his voice as he chuckled. You turned, leaning your back against the counter as you stared at the phone sitting atop the island across from where you stood.
"Wanna come to the rink? Some of the boys and I are having a scrimmage and we need a cheerleader." You may have been mentally complaining about having to leave the apartment for the ridiculous blind date, but you were already heading to your room to change seemingly before the offer could leave Brett's mouth. You bit your lip, realizing just how bad you had it for this boy.
"Of course, who's going?" You tossed your phone onto the bed as you moved to the closet, pulling out a pair of jeans and a sweatshirt.
"Kreider, Mika, Fil, Strome, Panarin, Skjei, Fox, and Tony." He listed and you nodded, the movement restricted from the hoodie being pulled over your head even though you realized he couldn't see you. "Tony has some friends who offered to go in goal for us."
"M'kay, I'll meet you guys there soon, bye Brett." You bid your goodbyes, words coming out a little strangled as you struggled to pull up your skinny jeans. Usually, when you went to the rink it was for games or meetings, and you were always in pencil skirts and button up blouses to stay professional. Now, you were just meeting some friends for a casual scrimmage. Though, knowing how competitive some of the boys were, you wondered just how long it would actually stay casual. Brett hung up after telling you to text him when you were close so he could let you in, and you quickly put on a bit of makeup and brushed your hair before tossing on your winter coat and heading out the door.
The cab ride was quick and as soon as you were in sight of Madison Square Garden you sent Brett a text. Before you could even open the door to the cab you spotted the tall boy waiting for you with his hands shoved in his pockets and his typical smile. When he saw you exiting the cab, he opened his arms for a hug. Your heart was beating faster and you hadn't even talked to him yet—he was going to be the death of you.
"Hey, let's get inside." You spoke hurriedly, not letting the embrace last as long as it usually did as a result of freezing New York winter temperatures. You felt his hand on your lower back as he guided you through the typical crowd on the sidewalk, trying extra hard to not trip on your own feet as most of your focus was on his hand making your back more warm than it probably should have been.
Easy conversation passed between you and Brett once you both had gotten inside and he dropped his hand back to his pockets and you were able to think clearly once more. You hated how he had that effect on you, how you could barely think straight when you felt his gaze. Your discussion about the Rangers next away game was interrupted by Mika Zibanejad—who was practically your brother—bursting through the door of the locker room and tossing you over his shoulder. You screamed, catching Brett's amused smile from your newly found position.
"Put me down!" You laughed loudly, seeing that Mika had brought you into the locker room and none of the boys seemed keen on helping. Your long haired friend did a few laps around the room as the boys cheered, and when he finally set you down you had to brace yourself against Brett, trying to regain your footing. That was not the first time Mika had down something like that, but it never failed to disorientate you.
"You're finally out of your apartment when you're not working!" Chris cheered, doing the most to chirp you. You rolled your eyes, not willing to concede that there was some truth behind his words.
"I'll have you know, I have a date tonight." You stated, not entirely sure why you were feeling a surge of needing to prove yourself. Mika gasped loudly, placing his hand over his heart and you spotted Brady glance towards Brett questioningly. Or maybe that was just your mind playing tricks on you, because why would he need to look for Brett's reaction? "Why do you all look like you don't believe I could have a date?"
"You're just a baby." Ryan teased, and you rolled your eyes at him. You eyed him carefully, making sure he kept his distance. Last time he had called you a baby was when you mentioned you couldn't cook to save your life, and he had cooed and pinched your cheeks.
"Who're you going with?" Brady asked and you took a seat in the booth bedside Brett's, who had started to get ready for the scrimmage.
"Don't really know, my neighbor set me up on a blind date. I didn't even know I was going until this morning." You shrugged, taking Brett's skates and untying the laces as he worked on his pads. The other boys were waiting for him to get ready so you decided to help him out.
"Do you want to go?" Brett asked, his gaze not leaving his pads but his voice was firm. You could feel the stares from the others boys, all adding to the growing pit of nerves in your stomach. His question was a simple one, yet it felt so loaded you were struggling with coming up with a response.
"We're going to go head out to the ice and warm up, when you're ready you can join us." Mika stated, ushering the boys out of the room and leaving you and Brett in an awkward silence. You were wondering what chain of events lead to this, it wasn't like Brett didn't go on dates so you weren't sure why he was so tense about you going on one.
"Well?" He asked after it seemed like you weren't going to answer him. Finally, he looked over to you, taking his skates out of your grasp and placing them on the ground beside his feet. He didn't move to put them on, instead he placed a hand on your knee. "Do you want to go?"
His touch was like fire but unlike earlier, your senses heightened instead of fogging up at the contact. You could feel every pounding beat of your heart, smell his cologne, hear the ticking of the clock in the corner. Your mind raced as you thought back to every moment you’ve spent with him over the past few months. How he always knew what to say to get you to laugh, how even his smile made a stressful day dealing with the media and the boys had you relaxing. Late nights at his apartment watching movies turning into sleepovers once you had fallen asleep on his couch and he was too much of a gentleman to wake you up and send you home. How he, without fail, would bring you a coffee on the mornings of away games where you had no idea where to get your own cup. You knew your answer, but it was just a problem of actually conveying it.
"No." You said simply, Brett nodding before returning back to his skates. You tapped your fingers against your thigh, feeling a surge of unusual confidence as you thought about what to say. In all honesty, you really just wanted his touch once more. A million and one thoughts were racing through your head but you couldn't force any out of your mouth. "I don't want to go. Not with him."
Brett's fingers stilled over his laces, abandoning them once more as he sat up to face you. You could hear your heartbeat in your ears, the sound mixed with the almost hopeful look in his eyes made your nerves double—and at this point, you didn't think that was even possible.
"Who would you want to go with, then?" Brett's voice was almost a whisper, as if he was afraid of breaking the bubble that seemed to develop around the two of you if he talked too loudly. You took your bottom lip between your teeth, your hand moving up to cup his jaw. You almost died on the spot when he leaned slightly into your touch, your thumb dragging over his cheekbone.
"Who would you want to go with?" You repeated his question, watching as his lips quirked up ever so slightly. You took note of your close proximity, the way his leg bumped against yours and how his head dipped slightly towards you. His eyes never broke their stare into mine and you nodded, giving him silent permission to close the rest of the distance between the two of you. And he did, not letting another moment pass.
If you thought your heart was racing before, you were certain Brett could feel it thumping as your lips pressed together. So many unspoken emotions were conveyed in the simple kiss, and it ended all too soon for your liking. Brett was the one to pull away first, his bright smile present on his face and you decided that it was your second favorite thing about him. His kisses definitely topped the list.
"I think you better call your neighbor and cancel that date, you've already got plans." Brett said, making you laugh and drop your head onto his shoulder to smother your smile as he finished tying up his skates. You helped him put on his shoulder pads and sweater, stealing kisses every time you even came close to his face. When he eventually made it onto the ice, he pressed one last kiss to the top of your head before going to take a few warmup shots.
"Finally!" Brady shouted, having spotted the small act of affection between the two of you. You blushed deeply, taking a seat on the home players bench as the team circled around you. They started chirping Brett, something you figured was inevitable, but it was all smiles from everyone. "I thought I was going to have to crash your date and tell him you already have a boyfriend." Brett laughed, shoving his teammate playfully, though his gaze never wavered from yours. Your smile widened as the next sweet words left his lips.
"You would've had to beat me to it, Skjei."
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Start At The Beginning [Happy Lowman]
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Chapter Four
Prompt: She takes his hand and he swears, his heart stops beating.
Rating: SFW
Warnings: No major warnings, fluffy as normal for this series so far.
Italics: This represents when they “fell in love” way back when, it’s sort of like a fairy tale they’re telling their kids.
Authors note: I’m slowly making my way back into the game. Hope you enjoy, please rate and review if you have the chance.
In a panic [Y/N] rushes to the closet and pulls a couple of extra jackets down for the girls before stuffing them into their already over packed bags. Once she’s zipped them closed she glances back around their room to make sure they have everything before doing the exact same thing in their shared bathroom. It’s not until Happy pokes his head into the bathroom that she slows down to a crawl and finally to a stop, panic evident on her face.
“Baby, what’s wrong?” Happy questions as he walks up to her, cupping her face forcing her to look him in the eyes.
It takes her a moment to form words, her whole body shakes and she stomps her foot, “W-what if they don’t have fun or what if they get hurt?”
Happy chuckles and presses his lips against hers forcibly shushing her up and calming her down, when he pulls away he presses another kiss against her nose. After that another one on her forehead and he repeats it again and again for a few moments to hopefully ease all of her worries.
“They will only be gone for a couple of weeks and besides they’re only going to be at your parents.” Happy mumbles just as one of the girls squeals from the living room. [Y/N] sucks in a deep breath and pats Happy’s chest as a soft smile spreads across her face, the sound of her girls playing and Happy’s presence helping her nerves.
“Okay, okay I can do this.” [Y/N] mutters as Happy presses another kiss to her forehead, “what time did they say they would be here?”
“Ten, which..” Happy says as he glances down the hallway at the clock hanging on the wall to double check the time, “is now actually.”
Before she can say anything in return there’s a knock at the door which causes the two of them to pull away from each other and make their way into the living room. Happy goes to answer the door but [Y/N] stops in her tracks, spins around and rushes back to the girls bedroom to get their bags. By the time she’s got them slung around her shoulders she can hear the girls cheering and her parents voices and the moment she walks into the living room she’s engulfed in hugs.
“It’s so good to see you baby, I promise we’ll take good care of them and they’ll call you every day before bed.” her mother states as she pulls away and plants a kiss on [Y/N]’s cheek.
“Make sure they eat all of their veggies and brush their teeth.” [Y/N] murmurs as her father pulls the bags away from her as she stares at her mother in the eyes.
“We will sweetheart, you and your old man need a break and it’s been a long time since we’ve had the girls to ourselves.” her mother replies as the two sweet angels she’s referring two come trotting back in with huge smiles on their faces.
“[Y/M/N] I know you’ll take good care of the girls, we’ll see you and the girls in a few days.” Happy states in an attempt to get the ball rolling so that it won’t be as hard on [Y/N].
“Right, right girls give your mom and dad lots of hugs and kisses okay?” her father states as he shoves his hands into the pockets on his coat. Lei and Cora rush forward and encase Happy’s legs all the while babbling about how much they’ll miss him and then they make their way over to [Y/N].
[Y/N] kneels down in front of them and they quickly spring into action and wrap their arms around her, “You two be on your best behavior and have loads of fun okay? I love you two oh so much and when you get back from Grandma’s and Grandpa’s I want to hear about everything.”
“Yes momma we understand.” Lei mumbles as she presses a kiss to [Y/N]’s cheek and Cora follows suit before they both pull away and run over to their grandmother. [Y/N] clears her throat and returns to a standing position as the girls are lead out to the car by her mother and followed her father. Ever so slowly she creeps up alongside Happy and waves at the girls who wave back before they disappear over the horizon.
“You okay?” Happy questions as he slings his arm over her shoulders pulling her into his side.
“I’ll be fine.” she chokes out as she tries desperately to keep from breaking down right there in front of her old man. After a few moments of just staring out into the yard she clears her throat and moves away from Happy in order to go and piddle with whatever she can lay her hands on. She loses track of what Happy does throughout the day as she immerses herself into some of the everyday household chores she sometimes neglects to spend time with the girls.
Sometime around six she wanders into the living room and collapses next to Happy on the couch, her eyes heavy. Happy scoots a little closer and drapes an arm over her shoulders, without hesitation she leans into him her head falling onto his chest as she dozes on and off. [Y/N] doesn’t even budge when Happy’s cell phone rings later in the night, he just readjusts himself so that he doesn’t disturb her and takes the call.
“Now?” Happy grumbles lowly into the phone as his eyes cut over to where [Y/N] is still napping on the couch, “can it not wait? Fine, i’m on my way.”
[Y/N] stretches for a brief moment but settles back onto the couch completely unaware that Happy has slipped off the couch and is pulling on his kutte. Once he’s got everything he needs Happy stops back by the couch and leans down to press a kiss to her cheek before slipping out the back door to the garage. It’s not until the motorcycle roars to life that she springs up scared, unsure of what’s happening. Happy has already pulled out of the driveway by the time she makes it to the door and out onto the sidewalk.
Panic sets every nerve in her body on fire and it’s not brought under control until she goes back inside and finds a note on the counter. It takes a moment for her to decipher the quick chicken scratch on the piece of paper but in the end she knows that Happy's been called to the clubhouse. She lets out a huge sigh of relief while leaning heavily against the counter, her heart still beating erratically against her chest.
“I need a fucking vacation.” [Y/N] mumbles as she walks over to the back door to lock it and once she’s done that one she does the same with the front. While on her way to her bedroom she checks her phone to see if she has any missed calls from the girls. Not finding anything she places it on charge and climbs into bed and the instant her head touches the pillow she’s out, the stressful day forgotten about.
Several hours later [Y/N] is jarred awake by the alarm clock on Happy’s bedside table screaming its tiny head off. It takes her a few seconds to pull her sleep clouded self together, but she eventually rolls over to silence it. On a normal morning she’d already be up and herding the kids around the house, but since they’re away at their grandparents she decides to lounge in bed. She almost dozes back off but the sound of clinking and the smell of frying bacon convinces her to abandon the bed.
As she nears the kitchen she can hear Happy speaking softly to someone while whipping up breakfast. [Y/N] leans against the wall, her heart swelling with happiness when she hears the sleepy voices of her two monsters.
“Okay, I’ll continue the story but you have to be quiet so that you don’t wake up mommy.” Happy mumbles as he pulls the scrambled eggs off the stove, “and once i’m through telling you, you have to go take a nap for your grandma.”
From where she’s standing she can hear a quiet ‘okay’ from the girls via FaceTime as Happy shuffles around near the stove.
In a mild panic [Y/N] rushes around the room trying to find her shoes only to stumble over Happy’s black hoodie. She grumbles to herself while yanking it up off the floor and throwing it on the bed just as the owner of said hoodie saunters out of the bathroom, steam billowing behind him. For a brief moment she gets distracted by Happy being shirtless, her [e/c] eyes roam up and down the chiseled man.
“I don’t mind you staring but you’re gonna be late if you don’t get going.” Happy states nonchalantly as he ghosts past her, stopping briefly only to plant a kiss on her forehead.
“Shit!” [Y/N] exclaims while dropping to her knees to look under the bed which is rewarding because she finds exactly what she’s looking for, “there’s coffee, some toast and you know where the spare key is.”
She doesn’t give Happy time to respond as she hobbles down the hallway pulling her shoes on desperately trying to make it to work on time. As she passes the kitchen she grabs her bag and car keys and flies out the back door but she comes to a screeching halt when her stomach churns. Her eyes dart left and then right and she makes a break for the nearest bush just as the retching starts, bile hits the roof of her mouth burning as she empties the contents of her stomach onto the ground. After a couple of moments of dry heaving she wipes her mouth with the back of her hand before continuing to her car, unsure if she picked up a bug somewhere or if the milk she had in her coffee had gone bad.
Either way she brushes it off and continues on to work, if it happens again she’ll take off early and try like a mad woman to get an appointment at the local doctors office. Throughout the day she has no problems and doesn’t think about it again until she swings by the garage to drop something off to Gemma. The second she walks through the clubhouse door something in the air sends her stomach churning once more and she barely makes it to the closest garbage can before she upchucks everything yet again. Unbeknownst to her Gemma was standing close by and witnessed the whole thing, so when [Y/N] lifts her head all she can see is a huge smile on the woman’s face.
“What? Is there chunks on my face? In my hair?” [Y/N] questions as Gemma slinks over, the smile never leaving her face.
Gemma gently pries the package away from [Y/N] before answering any of her questions, “No, but you have this glow about you baby girl. Well more specifically, the glow.”
[Y/N] clears her throat before grabbing one of the nearby loose napkins to wipe her mouth, surely Gemma didn’t mean the pregnancy glow. She scoffs, throws the napkin in the trash and cuts her eyes back over to Gemma who wiggles her eyebrows and turns on her heel to head back over to where she’s left her belongings.
“How late are you?” Gemma questions as she picks up her purse. The question sends [Y/N] in to a mild freakout since she technically doesn’t even know today's date. She digs in her pocket for her phone and quickly glances at the date and her heart sinks into her gut, she’s late, late.
“I-I, any recommendations?” [Y/N] finally asks, her heart racing.
“Stock up on lots of diapers and wipes.” Gemma replies with a chuckle as she turns back around, her face softens once she sees the look of sheer terror on [Y/N]’s face, “relax baby, go to the store and pick up a few pregnancy tests-different brands and then go from there.”
“Right, i’ll get right on that.” [Y/N] mumbles as Gemma comes to a stop in front of her, “I can do this, i’ve always wanted kids.”
“I’m always here for you and you’ve got so many other people standing behind you.” Gemma replies while reaching out and rubbing [Y/N]’s arm in a consoling manner.
She nods and Gemma walks past her and out of the clubhouse, [Y/N] waits a few minutes and then follows suit. Once she’s back in her car all she can do is sit behind the wheel for what feels like an eternity before finally making herself leave the parking lot. She doesn’t even realize that she’s driven across town and come to a stop in front of the local drugstore.
[Y/N] suckes in a deep breath, gathers her wallet and exits her car, her mind set on one object: pregnancy tests. She enters the drugstore and briefly speaks to the cashier before dipping down the feminine hygiene aisle where the tests should be stored. Her [e/c] eyes scan the never ending shelves stocked to the brim with items until they land on what she’s looking for.
“Shit, which one is the best?” She mumbles to herself as she fumbles with the box closest to her. The longer she reads the pros and cons of each test the more anxious she gets. So in a wild frenzy [Y/N] yanks several of each brand off the shelf and marches over to the cashier practically launching the boxes onto the counter.
“Will this be all?” The young petite blond asks, her cheerful smile never leaving her face.
It takes a minute for [Y/N] to find the correct words to answer the girl so she nods yes and utters a soft, “Yes.”
Once the cashier rings up the total, [Y/N] swiftly pays for the items, gently grabs the bag and rushes back out to her car. The moment the door closes she shoves her keys into the ignition, fires up her car, throws it into reverse and backs out of the space. She doesn’t worry about her seatbelt at the moment, she’ll pull it on as soon as she’s far away from the damned drugstore.
The car creeps to a stop in her driveway and all [Y/N] can do is methodically put the car into park and shut it off. Her hands fall away from the steering wheel and into her lap as her head falls back onto the headrest.
“Fuck my life, i’m not ready to have kids! Hell, does Happy even want kids? We haven’t even decided on what to call this, this, this thing we have going on!” [Y/N] yells as she turns her head, her [e/c] eyes landing on the paper sack sitting on the passenger seat. Tears begin welling up in her eyes as she snatches the bag off the seat and forces her car door open with such force it bounces back and smacks her arm angrily.
After shutting and locking the back door [Y/N] tosses her keys and wallet on the counter before trudging to her bathroom, paper sack in hand. The light flickers on and she parks herself in front of the sink before turning the bag upside down so that the tests fall out and onto the counter. [Y/N] closes her eyes and grabs a random box from the counter, in a hurry she rips it open and fumbles around with the instructions. After a quick once over she runs through the steps in real time and quickly snaps the cap back on the test and sets a timer.
The next five minutes feel like an eternity for [Y/N], she fiddles around with the actual test before slamming it down on the counter. She goes from pacing back and forth to jumping up and down on the floor until her phone chimes and she lunges for the test. Once she’s holding the plastic stick in her hands the world around her fades away, she doesn’t even hear Happy enter the house and call her name. Her [e/c] eyes dart to the well holding the results and her stomach drops: positive.
“You’re pregnant?” The question sends the test flying from her hand and clattering against the wall as she spins around clutching at her chest. There standing before her is a tired and shocked looking Happy who’s holding one of the many pregnancy tests.
[Y/N] takes a step back and falls down onto the toilet lid as she searched for the correct words. She struggles to find the right wording so instead she takes Happy's hand and Happy swears, his heart stops beating, “according to the test, yes I am pregnant.”
From where she’s holed up just outside of the kitchen she can see Happy load two plates down with breakfast. All the while he’s telling the girls how much he loves them before ending the FaceTime so that he can gather up two glasses of orange juice. [Y/N] watched as he moves the items over to a tray on the counter and suddenly realizes that he plans to serve her breakfast in bed. In a panic she scurries back down the hallway and jumps back into bed pretending to be asleep as Happy creeps along the hallway and into their room.
She can hear the glasses clink against the silverware as he gently eases it down on the floor. The next thing she registers is the bed shifting and the lightest of kisses being pressed against her forehead.
“Baby; I know you love to sleep in when the girls are away but I’m starving and I really don’t want this food to go to waste.” Happy mumbles against her ear as she pretends to stir beneath the covers.
“Mm, food? Where?” [Y/N] questions as she rolls towards Happy who is leaning down to pick up the tray, “that looks absolutely amazing.”
“You look pretty damn good too.” Happy replies as [Y/N] reaches over to steal a piece of bacon.
“Easy now, that’s how we gonna ended up with two beautiful children.” She states with a smile.
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sml-str · 5 years
Summary: Victorian Era!AU. Castiel meets Sam Winchester by chance alone and shares a brief conversation; perhaps there’s more to come out of it than Castiel anticipated.
Word Count: 1808
Pairing: Sastiel
Important Notes: This entire fic is based on a beautiful piece of art by @yifera. Find it here. No seriously, please check it out. It’s more gorgeous than anything I could ever write. 
Last but not least, an important thank you goes to this fic’s beta, @smolstiel, who not only is a good part of why this fic even has a title and decent summary but is also the one who helped make this fic worth reading in big ways.
(Edit: You can also now read this on Ao3 if you would prefer.)
Have a nice day.
Castiel Novak had heard and uttered the phrase many times. In his neighborhood – the richer, politer, more passive-aggressive part of the city – it was practically slung around like a small child’s stuffed toy as the farewell for any context.
When passing by a neighbor or family member briefly, have a nice day. After requesting something from the help, have a nice day. When attempting to exit any conversation at a party, it was have a nice evening, and it would have to be stated at least three times before escape was finally within reach. When finally walking away from a heated discussion with one of his brothers, after voices finally started to lower again – have a nice day.
Castiel had never once heard the civil goodbye sound so very… welcoming.
Of course, the one time he did would be on the invisible line of the city between the upper classes and the slums. Castiel wouldn’t even have gone if it were not for cruelties of necessity. A business transaction had demanded it. Mr. Crowley had refused to sell ownership of one of his factories to the Novak family in any other location than his own office; a representative was required. Castiel, as always, was handed the dirty work.
So Castiel had put on a fairly nice outfit with his favored beige coat – the one his mother hated the most – grabbed his hat and walked, on his own. He could have taken a carriage, which included the constant, dutiful reminder of Samandriel, but he only liked the usage of horses for transportation if he was directly riding them. So he walked on, avoiding the shaking heads of his carriage-adoring family as he exited the manor, squinting a bit at Miss Meg when she attempted to invite him over for tea, and some ‘deeper appreciation for furniture arrangement’ as he passed her by (Have a nice day, mademoiselle), and braving the short journey ahead.
Would walking make him late to meeting Mr. Crowley? Yes. Would the weasel still sell? As soon as he was threatened with the possibility of the Novak family buying property from a certain rival instead, yes.
Castiel straightened his hat with one hand as he delved into town, strolling along the cobbled paths with his eyes set directly forwards as a man on one mission. The chatter of London surrounded him as he went, the clopping and rolling of horses pulling carriages through the streets harmonizing with the babbling of strangers going by. He ignored it all. 
He would have continued doing so if someone only a yard or so to his left pulled his eyes away from their target.
Castiel had never considered himself prone to distractions.
The someone was a rugged young man, sitting on the porch of a two-story house that was too nice to belong to him, perhaps for him to even live in, wearing a shirt that may have at some point been white, a gray cap, and worn out trousers that showcased an impressively long pair of legs splayed over the two steps. Castiel had to be at least a year his senior, but it was evident that the man ahead of him was at least four or five inches taller, despite Castiel’s already fairly impressive height.
Their eyes met and locked together for a passing moment. Castiel managed a polite nod in the stranger’s direction, keeping his feet moving ahead.
A smile crept onto the young man’s dirt-smudged face as he reached up to tip his cap. “Have a nice day.”
There was something about the man’s warm tone – something that was certainly not expecting Castiel to just carry on with his day, something that was definitely almost maybe wanting Castiel to stick around – that caused him to hang back for a few moments rather than continue on. There was something about the way the man’s mouth had moved when he said it that made Castiel want to see it again.
So Castiel lingered, one foot still ahead of him as his own mouth refused to function, his mind too scattered to repeat the sentiment back. “Oh. I, ah… have…You’re – nice.”
The man chuckled with a soft noise. His head tilted a bit, exposing the left side of his lean neck and highlighting the light dip where it met his shoulder. “Well, uh, thank you, sir.”
Castiel had the most awful feeling that his cheeks were beginning to flush, an action they hadn’t performed since the very first time someone expressed interest in him, back when he was young. “Yes.”
There was pause as the young man seemed to study Castiel, a surprising amount of intelligence seeming to shine through – blue? green? hazel? – eyes as he did so.  “Yes.” Still giving Castiel the same soft smile, he introduced himself. “I’m Sam, by the way. Sam Winchester.”
Castiel silently wrote the name down in his memory, mentally repeating it a few times before he remembered that introductions were typically mutual, shifting forward. “Castiel Novak. It’s very nice to meet you, Samuel Winchester. …Sam.”
“Nice to meet you too, Cas,” Sam grinned a bit as he spoke, eyes twinkling as he straightened up and lifted his head slightly, the new position allowing more of the sun to shine down on features that Castiel could only describe as striking. “You come around these parts often? Just – out of curiosity; I don’t think I’ve seen you.”
If Castiel hadn’t definitely known much, much better, that nickname with that specific question would have almost come across as flirtations.
“Ah, no, I do not,” Castiel answered honestly, planning to end the sentence there but his own tongue betrayed him. “Well, at least, I haven’t – at this moment in time… Perhaps? Well, wait, no, actually, I…” He clamped his mouth shut willfully, shifting his weight once again as he mentally cursed his own foolishness.
Sam let out another chuckle but quieter. If Castiel’s damned mind had thought of Sam’s words as coquettish before, Sam’s simple response to his rambling only fueled it. “Pity.”
“I could start,” Castiel blurted out suddenly, before quickly trying to rebound. “I mean to say, it’s good to know one’s own city well. I should pay more attention to what it has to offer.”
“It’s got one or two things, here and there.” Sam made eye contact with him again, that same intelligence shining from them directly into what felt like Castiel’s soul, and Sam’s words were what Castiel thought could only have been an open invitation and – no, don’t go there.
This was not an invitation, it couldn’t have been, and yet Castiel could feel the unfamiliar sensation of his heart beating against his ribcage at a faster pace, a feeling he hadn’t had since he’d come home from studying abroad. He found he couldn’t peel his eyes away again. “I can see that.”
Oh, good God, no.
What a fine time to consider carving out his own tongue, for his own sake. His brothers would be so glad to hear of this decision.
That is not what he meant to say, except it was because he’d been looking right at Sam, and that makes it worse, you fool – and there was definitely a thing in this area that made this area worth it, but now Sam would realize Castiel’s thoughts and would no longer want to talk to him further.
Instead of looking at Castiel oddly or retracting immediately from the conversation, Sam only ducked his head a bit as if embarrassed – that couldn’t be right – and lifted it and oh, why was Sam’s face tinged pink? Castiel raised his head towards the sky. Ah, right, the sun. Heat. That made more sense.
A brute force collided with Castiel’s back and propelled him forwards a few steps, his top hat being knocked off of his head and onto the stone path. Castiel lifted his head up to see the back of the large man’s head who’d bumped into him walk away, leaving in a rush of air that ruffled his coat. Then he looked around, remembering what he was actually doing there, as well as the fact that he was taking up space on the narrow walkway.
He straightened his coat lightly, then started to reach down to grab his hat. Long, nimble fingers beat him to it. He blinked, watching as Sam picked it up for him, even going so far as to brush it off, before standing and holding it out with a slightly crooked smile.
Sam was as tall as his legs had earlier predicted.
Castiel took the hat, setting it back on top of his head. “Ah, yes. Thank you. It’s unwise to perform a business meeting without a good hat.”
Another amused huff, followed by, “That’s true.” Sam reached up, tipping his own cap just a bit in agreement. “Speaking of, I should let you get back to that.” A pause. “It was nice talking to you, Cas.”
“Yes. Yes,” Castiel replied quickly with a sharp nod. “Er, I mean to say, it was nice talking to you too, Sam.” Please talk with me more.
He studied Sam’s eyes for a mere moment, blinking when the younger man before him held out his hand. It took a moment for his mind to catch up with the action, clearing his throat as he extended his arm to accept the handshake. He could feel the warmth of Sam’s hand as their wrists lifted and fell in unison; he almost cursed himself for choosing to wear gloves.
He fidgeted after their hands released each other’s, before giving a polite smile and another tip of his hat, forcing himself away before his tongue could spit out another humiliating statement. His face was heating up too much for his liking for him to check over his shoulder, but he almost thought he could feel Sam’s eyes on him. He almost wanted them to be.
He shook his head once he turned the corner of the street as if to shake away the image of Sam’s face burned into the back of his head. His hands reached up to fix his collar, lifting his head up high as he grew closer to his destination. No more distractions.
Mr. Crowley’s bearded expression was scrunched with indignation when Castiel finally arrived at his dimly lit office. “You’re late, Mr. Novak.”
Castiel had the decency to look shamed for a brief moment, nodding slowly as he let one of the servants take his coat and hat. He pulled out one of the two chairs in front of Crowley’s sleek wooden desk, sitting down gracefully without invitation. “Ah – yes. I apologize for my tardiness.” He offered a thin, considerably unapologetic smile. “I’ve been having a rather nice day.”
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writingdummy · 6 years
late nights
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pairing: wen junhui x reader word count: 1.5k+ genre: ceo!au; fluff(?) a/n: ahhh, i promise i write more than jun, my cousin likes to give me ideas for him because he’s her bias. my next one won’t be jun, promise!! please request anything!
Good impressions were everything in business, and you were told something very similar to this every day as the assistant of a CEO. His name was Wen Junhui, and his company was internationally known. The business had its flaws, but it was all down to him to make sure things were running smoothly. Usually this means late nights for him, and well… You couldn’t just leave your boss stranded, right?  Without complaints, you would stay behind with him, helping him achieve his goals for the night, maybe even going into early hours of the morning.
Tonight was one of those nights.
The clock struck twelve, the clock on Junhui’s desk beeping quietly to notify him of the digital numbers chancing to represent a new day. He preferred not to have the clock face him while working late. All he needed was to get work done, and if working through the twilight hour is what it meant to get it done, he would do it. At this moment, a yawn escaped his lips, leaning back on his office chair. You looked up to him, biting your lip as you did. For some reason, he always insisted upon you sitting on the couches in his office and spreading your work over the coffee table, claiming it would be more comfortable for you to work, unlike at your desk.
But those were just excuses, weren’t they? Wen Junhui, as much as he didn’t want to admit it… He was lonely, and you were the only company he had, despite you being paid to be in said position.  He was a young man still, a bright future ahead of him. Yet, because of this, he had to push everyone close to him away at a young age. After all, he was the one who inherited his father’s business, and the group that the company was involved in was closely tied to his father. Simply put, he didn’t have anyone his age to be with. You couldn’t help but smile to him as he rose from his seat. You stood as well, following his slim figure with your eyes until he took a seat next to you.
“There’s nothing better than the stillness of the building after hours,” he said quietly, gesturing for you to sit down as he did. You nodded, taking a seat once more on the loveseat in his office. As you reached out to collect your laptop and work once more, Junhui reached out to your hands, pushing them away from the device. This is when you realized that he had closed his own at his desk, your eyes widening in surprise as you looked over to him. You rested your hands in your lap now.
“Sorry for keeping you this late so often nowadays, Y/N.” The words left his mouth, regret coating his voice as he spoke. “My employees should be well-rested so they can do the job, yet that’s never the case with you. You always stay late with me.”
At this moment, you could feel your eyes getting heavy, and you looked away to blink rapidly to wake yourself up, but just after you would shake your head in denial. “Oh, don’t worry about it, Mr. Wen,” you say quickly, smiling a little in hopes to console him at least a bit. “I’m not the least bit tired.” Even if it was far from the truth, you were meant to make him feel better, right?
Junhui then took your hands into his, looking from your hands to your face, as if he was looking for something. “Listen, I need you to function. You’re the only reason I haven’t gone insane yet from running this business of my father’s. So please tell me when you’re tired. I know when you are anyways, so please rest.”
You slowly nodded to him, looking from him to the alarm clock on his desk, the digital numbers reading 12:19 AM now. “I just have a few things to finish up,” you say quickly, and he nodded.
“Tell me when you’re finished, I’ll drop you home today,” he replied.
You pulled your hands away from his, a small smile still remaining on your face. “Thank you, Mr. Wen but my car is here—“
“Then I’ll pick you up tomorrow morning too. I wouldn’t mind seeing you all day if I could.”
This caused you to blush, picking up your laptop to work once more. “Is that okay? With workplace policies and everything…”
Junhui simply smiled at you, glad that you think those things through before saying yes to him. “There’s no need to worry about that. The CEO picking up the CEO’s assistant is a normal thing to occur, if I’m being honest.”
You had already begun typing away, an email to a client overseas. “If you say there’s no need to worry, then okay. Just don’t want any rumours about it!”
You looked up to him with a smile, appreciative of the fact that he would drop you off and pick you up. It wasn’t a very common thing to happen between the two of you, but it was nice, you would admit that. Every time you come into the situation itself, you would double check if the work policies have changed at all.
But of course if that happened, you would probably be one of the first informed to read through it and run it over with the directors of the company. You finished writing the email, hit send and closed your laptop. Heaving a sigh of relief, you looked up to Junhui who was simply scrolling through his phone, probably answering emails that way as well.
“Mr. Wen, I’m ready to go!” you exclaimed as soon as you put your laptop in your carrying case and your phone in your purse once more. You stood up, smoothing out your skirt, Junhui doing so as well, with his tie. He picked up his briefcase and looked at his watch before placing his hand in his pocket as he joined you.
“Shall we, fine lady?” he asked with a smile. You nodded in response, making a face at his comment. You were just glad to have such a kind boss.
You both walked to the elevator, it being a quiet ride to the main floor where there was parking spaces outside. You felt a bit strange following your boss out to his car, and not getting in your own but it would be rude to turn down the offer at this point. You smiled as he held open the passenger door for you, closing it for you as you settled in your seat. He sat down in the driver’s seat by the time you clicked in your seatbelt, another kind smile from him as he did so with his own.
The drive to your apartment was a quiet one, filled with the music playing through the Bluetooth features of his phone and the car. Junhui hummed along with the songs playing through his music app, probably his personal playlist whenever he had the time to just sit and lounge for a little while in his home.
Yet somehow the drive… It seemed so short, maybe it wouldn’t be so bad to be with and see your boss more often than you already did. Your heart skipped a beat as his hand landed on yours, a gentle smile on his face.
“See you tomorrow morning! Don’t keep your phone on silent,” he exclaimed, almost as if he was excited to pick you up the next day. You nodded respectfully.
“Thank you, Mr. Wen—“ But before you could continue, you were cut off by his words.
“I never understood why you call me that. I know I’m your boss, but we don’t need to be this formal. Junhui. No one calls me by my name now other than my mother, so I would like it if you could. Please call me Junhui.”
“O-Okay,” you said slowly, the warm smile on his face still, almost startling you. It had never faded. “Thank you, Mr. Junhui for dropping me off. I’ll see you tomorrow morning, sorry if I cause you any trouble because of this.” You smile to him, getting out of the car with your belongings. You turned back, waving to him as he left, a smile on your face as well.
As soon as you had climbed the stairs to your apartment on the third floor of your building, you opened the door quickly, getting inside before letting out a big breath and leaning against the door. “Oh my god, I can’t believe that just happened.”
The next morning, you made sure to look even better than you normally did, fixing your makeup and fair up until the moment you heard the knock at your door.  You ate the last bite of your breakfast, collecting your things, putting on your shoes and opening the door for him. “Ah, Mr. Junhui!”
“Good morning, Y/N! You’re looking good! Are you ready?”
“Oh, thank you! Yes, I am!”
Your perky attitude was contagious it seemed, causing there to be a day filled with sweets and fun for the two of you, along with many more days like this to come. All from a little late night drive with Junhui.
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dominodebt · 6 years
Blackwatch AU WIP #2
hey so I know I’ve been talking about this Blackwatch AU a lot and put up a WIP a while ago but I promise I’m still working on it so here’s a big (no I mean it this thing’s like 1k and some change) Blackwatch!Mercy WIP
as always WIPs are subject to change so don’t sweat it too much if something looks wrong or weird!
hope you guys like it! you can always check out my twitter for more writing updates if you’re into that kinda thing <3
also also sorry for being annoying but maybe check out my post about doing a  writing stream and let me know your thoughts because right now it seems like people aren’t really interested which is fine but like I just gotta know okay thanks sorry that’s my shameless plug
Being an outsider is not exactly uncharted territory for Angela Ziegler.
           Her teachers boasted endlessly about how gifted she was—how special, how elite. Systematically set aside for displaying premature levels of intellect at a young age, a rift arose between herself and her peers that never quite smoothed over. Those on the other side of the academic wall resented her bitterly, so Angela’s logical solution was to keep going up—to work harder and study longer and think faster than anyone. She took her raw genius and forcibly marshaled it into a finely tuned machine that she kept going at all hours.
           No rest. No pause. Just facts and data and answers and progress. She set her sights on perfection and never accepted a degree less than that, in anything that she did.
           The wall became a pedestal, then a tower, then another building entirely—one only she occupied.
           The lonely life of a genius, or whatever bullshit others gossiped about behind their hands. Angela never took the time to listen—never wasted a thought on them.
           So when she strides into Overwatch’s headquarters, baring Blackwatch’s symbol on her chest—a skull and a sword sewn over her heart—she has no reaction to the dozens of eyes that she feels track her movements.
            Maybe that’s why she’d fit in to the shadow company so well. She’d already existed on the fringes of society—why not just set up shop there?
           She feels Jack’s gaze on her when she enters the room, but doesn’t even spare him a look, feigning interest the week-old notes still attached to her clipboard.
           “You know,” he drawls, as she pretends to tick something off of a list that’s not there. “Blackwatch is supposed to be a secret sort of thing.”
           Angela arches an eyebrow at her clipboard, making more pointless, empty notes.
           “I’m aware, Commander,” she tells him mildly. “My hand still aches from all the security releases I had to sign.”
           She hears him sigh. Her pen scratches against the paper.
           “Do you really need to parade around—?”
           “I’m not parading anywhere,” she cuts him off, a touch of coolness to her voice. “I’m attending a meeting. At your request.”
           She flicks her gaze up to meet his unamused frown.
           “You could have worn your old Overwatch uniform,” he informs her coldly.
           Ana’s standing in the corner—an observation Angela only makes now that she’s bothered to look. It unnerves her that the sharpshooter’s presence had gone unnoticed. She used to be able know the other woman’s position inherently, like a reflex.
           She looks back to Jack, trying not to think of what else she has forgotten.
           “I could have,” she agrees, voice detached and chilled. “I could have also worn my Valkyrie suit, or my military dress, or desert fatigues—I could have borrowed McCree’s belt buckle and worn that.” She gives him a small smile that’s all teeth before dropping her gaze back to her notes.
          She realizes—off-handedly—all she’s been doing is underlining Gabe’s name with increasing force as Jack’s tone sinks deeper and deeper under her skin.
          Jack shifts his weight, crossing his arms.
          “Still warming up to things at Blackwatch?” he asks with an arched eyebrow, like he’s just pegged her mood to perfection.
           Angela lets out a smirk—abnormally sharp and maybe a little too tight. “Warming up isn’t really what I’m known for.”
           Jack stares her down. Ana is still standing with her back turned, but Angela can clearly see the way her head’s titled—the sharpshooter is hearing every word.
           A silence settles over the room—uneasy and cold. Angela can’t remember feeling this misplaced at Overwatch.
           “We should wait for Reyes—”
           “Gabe said to start without him—”
           Angela and Jack lock gazes. Ana’s shoulder blades stick out like knives across her back.
           “What do you mean, start without him?” Jack repeats with a hard look. “He’s my go-between with Blackwatch. He has all the information I need.”
           Angela’s answering glare is a cold snap—sudden, startling, and bitter in its frigidness.
           “He was kind enough to pass that information to me,” she tells him tightly, fingers going white where she holds her clipboard. It’s all coming clear now, so fucking clear—
           Jack scoffs. “He passed it to you?”
           “Yes.” Angela’s tone teeters on a knife’s edge. “He did.”
           “So what, you’re Blackwatch’s secretary now?” The Strike Commander’s words drip with disparage.
           “Jack.” Ana’s voice is quiet and sharp. She glances over her shoulder to give him a look of warning.
             “You never thought I’d go with him,” Angela accuses him, finally lowering her clipboard to look him in the eye. “You never saw me as the wild card. That’s your problem—one of your problems, actually—you think you understand people and you don’t.”
           “Angela.” Ana turns around now, voice dark with displeasure as Jack glares openly at her.
           “What are you talking—?”
           Angela cuts him off ruthlessly. “You read my file like you were reading my autobiography. Like knowing where I was born and where I went to school and what doctors gave me their stamp of approval—”
           “Angela.” Ana’s voice is a command for silence. Angela defies it without thought.
           “—would tell you everything you needed to know about me. But it didn’t, did it? There’s nothing there about my parents. It didn’t tell you that I hate having the UN looking over my shoulder every time I do something they find interesting. Not one line dedicated to my firm belief in presenting my research myself, instead of being spoken for by an Overwatch-approved representative—”
           “Angela, you are so out of line—” Jack begins.
           “But then you let Reyes go,” Angela can’t stop the words spilling out of herself now. “And you didn’t think anywhere of it, because nowhere in my file does it mention that I’m a stubborn piece of shit who’s loyal to my friends even if it means abandoning the place I considered home—even if it means being stripped of everything I worked for—”
           “That is enough Angela,” Ana again, stepping forward like she’s going to force Angela out or hold Jack back.
           “—and maybe that’s why you made Blackwatch,” the doctor hisses. “So you could keep all your mistakes in one place and make sure they can never—”
           “Angela, leave!”
           “—come back to haunt you. Maybe that’s why you hate us.” She stares him down, chest heaving. “Because every time you see this—” she slaps a hand over the Blackwatch logo like she’s pledging allegiance to a new country—one she’d kill and die for, one she’ll defend unto death “—you’re reminded of all the times you failed.”
           She turns on her heel then, storming out of the room, her black coat flaring out behind her, like some storm she’s leaving in her wake. She feels like a livewire—ultraviolet. Too bright and hot and much—
           Reyes is there, striding towards her from the tarmac—because of course he is. She needs him, and he’s there.
           Their relationship is vertigo—pushing and pulling at the same time. An endless give and take that boils down to a balancing act between pillar and pendulum.
           Anger roars in her ears, so loudly she almost doesn’t hear him when he finally reaches her side.
           “Angela, what the fuck did you do Ana’s been lighting my phone up since I got off the plane—”
           “Good news.” Reyes breaks off with a rush of air as Angela slams the clipboard into his chest for him to take, striding past him—eyes too bright, heart beating wildly beneath her Blackwatch sigil. “The gates of hell just opened, and you’re my plus one.”
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nodaski · 6 years
A Tale Of Unwilling Hearts
Fandom: OnS
Pairing: Gureshin
Chapter 5/5
Chapter 5: An Ardent Love Lost In Between Shades Of Grey
The stillness of the world seemed endless like a slowed eternity of infinite agony as Shinya’s unseeing eyes gradually took everything in.
“You’ve got blood on your face,” said the voice before a handkerchief was handed to him. When he did not make any move from his kneeling position on the wooden floor of the classroom to take it the voice just sighed deeply – an echoing sound embodying both immense patience and a mellowed feeling of frustration - before the handkerchief was shoved between his limp, unfeeling fingers. Shinya watched with detached curiosity how the red coating his pale skin slowly infiltrated in the similarly white fabric, the colour slowly painting everything into a macabre, violent crimson. He made no move to use it.
On his left Kureto watched him with his normal impassive expression, his eyes scorching in their search over his features, reading, observing and calculating. If he could, Shinya would have laughed at how obviously transparent the broken shards of glass that made up his soul – coating over his bones under his unblemished skin, as proof of his broken spirit - were, but he couldn’t his eyes staring at the pool of blood spread out in front of him.
Even if he tried to remember, searching deeply into the murky recesses of his mind where only darkness swirling alongside years of guilt and hatred seemed to linger, he could not recall how the blood had looked like before when it had been pouring from the broken bodies of the other children that he mercilessly carved into pieces with his desperate will to live. But try as he did, he could barely remember how blood had looked before. How it had felt before. Because right now all of it was overwhelming; the coppery smell, the sound of pink flesh tearing to show pink muscles and white bones, as red flooded everything, coating, suffocating, drowning…
His stomach heaved, and Shinya slapped his hand over his mouth trying to keep his stomach in check. The white handkerchief smelled like iron and death as it absorbed slowly even more of the blood staining his face. And all of a sudden he could not stand the feeling anymore - the sickening smooth wetness that was still warm coating his skin - and Shinya scrubbed viciously at his face and hands, his breaths coming out in loud pants as panic shook him from the outside out, shudders helplessly wracking his frame, as his heart was clawed out slowly by unnecessarily painful feelings. But no matter how hard he tried, the redness would not wipe away, the colour infiltrating into his skin, burning through his pores, glowing accusingly against the white canvas that he was, so startlingly clear, an obvious reminder of what he almost lost.
“You’re acting ridiculous,” Kureto finally observed with his casual dose of coldness, his eyes tracing every neurotic movement Shinya did.
Shinya let out a humourless laugh, the hollowness of his soul resonating in between the merry sounds of his amusement in a contrasting cacophony of irony and bitterness.
“Shut up,” he murmured, uncaring, unfeeling, as his hands shook in their quest to wipe away the blood.
“Shut up? Why should I? Since when do you even have the courage to dare to order me around like that?” Kureto asked, but his voice wasn’t angry, just politely curious, slightly inquiring as if they had the most normal conversation ever about the weather. Only everything was happening next to a pool of blood.
His soulmate’s blood.
At that thought, Shinya’s heart did something funny in his chest, a painful palpitation where it seemed to squeeze inside itself and squirm at the same time, making a chocked breath leave his lips. If it sounded suspiciously close to a sob neither of them mentioned it.
He didn’t answer. There was nothing to say anymore. What could he say after all? Shinya was kneeling in a pool of red, warm blood, the liquid coating him almost from head to toes. His soulmate’s blood. Because Shinya had come just this close to losing Guren.
He had almost lost Guren.
The realisation settled heavily in his mind, almost bringing him down with its weight, dizziness overtaking him all of a sudden, as if all the air in the room couldn’t fill the gaping void in his chest. His mind was stuck on the same thought repeating it over and over again, his heart haywire, and limbs unmoving, as the world moved around him too fast, much too fast, as if Guren almost dying hadn’t phased any god that ruled over this petty world inhabited by humans.
Shinya did not know how things could have gone so wrong so fast. He tried to replay things in his mind slowly, tried to rationalise them, snap out of this ridiculous emotional stupor, but he couldn’t. Nothing made sense. All he knew was that Guren had lost control, it all had been too much, too fast, and before they knew it all, the inhuman thing living inside him was in control changing his soulmate into someone – something – he did not recognise. They had been so foolish, so stupid thinking they could do this on their own. Their ambitions, their will, their plans, all of them had been a ploy in Mahiru’s hand, and their stupidity, their foolish hope – and Shinya couldn’t believe he had let himself be caught up in such a stupid sentiment – had been her doing. And now, Guren had almost died twice in a few hours.
Shinya had watched his soulmate almost become a demon, and then he had watched him almost die as he was supressed, put down like some sort of an animal in a try to stop him from killing and destroying everyone around him.
And Shinya had fought him, of course he had participated in such a mission, even as his soul was tearing in his chest with every order issued that prioritised extermination over salvation. And then, in the end, when they had cornered the thing controlling him - the demon - Guren was brought down by magical chains developed by the Order of the Imperial Demon, as the thing inside him was raging, taking control, wishing to bring the hammer of its perverse destruction over the world. And to his absolute horror, Shinya’s vision had started to flutter, colours dulling slowly, until nuances he had come to see as normal turned into washed up greys, only a few colours remaining intact in the sea of wavering darkness that had started to surround him as Guren’s body was mangled and impaled from all sides in the hope to bring the demon down before he took Guren’s sanity all for itself. And Shinya realised with the greatest horror he had ever experienced – greater than when his parents sold him into a life of slavery; greater than when he had first had to drag the sharp edge of a knife through soft and squishy tissue to expose through pain muscle, fat and blood to death; greater than when he had thought that his life ended with Mahiru’s refusal of his destiny – he had launched forward trying to prevent the certainty that Kureto was shaping in between the fading shades of his world through his orders.
His body enveloped Guren’s in a tight hug, even as the beast clawed at his skin, burning, ripping, even as chains pushed through both of their flesh uniting them in a hug much closer and more painful than anything humanly possible. Still, he held on tight, desperation he didn’t know he was capable of keeping his arms tight around his soulmate, as the world shook between colours and monochrome, trying to prevent the death of what he hadn’t realised until then that he could absolutely not live without.
He had almost lost Guren, and even if he was fine, even if Guren was fine too, the demons lingering inside their bodies already having healed both of them, anything else wasn’t,  as he stayed in the same place on the floor in the pool of his beloved’s blood, the medics having ripped Guren’s tired body from his frantic arms.
“You had almost killed him,” his quiet, angry whisper cut through the tension in the room, as his breaths slowed down. “You had always killed my…” Shinya yelled, his head finally moving to glare with hatred towards his ‘brother’. But he could not finish that sentence, he would not say that sacred word in front of Kureto Hiragi of all people that had watched his weak display with the same amount of interest reserved for cockroaches crawling in the mud.
When he did not continue, Kureto raised an eyebrow and slowly walked towards him, his arm extending to yank him from the floor by the collar of his dirty uniform.
“Soulmate?” he finished his sentence, as frozen amber met wintery blue. And Shinya still flinched at hearing the word said out loud, his heart barely beating, not having the ability to react anymore even to having his greatest secret – love – and weakness revealed to Kureto Hiragi. Instead he glared, fear, pain and scalding fury making him unable to deny the obvious; not now, not when the memory of greys was so starkly clear, as they had taken over his vision slowly, discolouring the world in a painting of despair and sorrow, as the colours had been slipping from his fingers slowly. He never wanted to see anything in monochrome ever again, never wanted to have to relieve the knowledge of what the world would be returned to with the death of his soulmate.
“Stupid. You are such a fool, Shinya. Your soulmate has done that to himself. You had helped him do that to himself in your stupid running around playing with things you never would have been able to control,” Kureto finally snapped at his insolent silence full of accusations.
“What the fuck do you know, you bastard?” he asked slowly, each syllable coated with his absolute loathing for him, for the family Kureto represented in that moment.
“More than you think, I imagine,” Kureto continued casually, unfazed, his calmness grating slowly on Shinya’s nerves.
“You knew! You fucking knew!” he screamed, suddenly his hands coming up out his own accord to grasp at Kureto’s, his body propelling them forward until Kureto’s back hit the nearest wall. “You fucking knew, you sadistic bastard, and you still almost tried to kill him!” he screamed, his voice raw, decades of pretence falling like leaves in front of the cold, wintery breath of death.
Kureto seemed unimpressed still, even if a lit peeved perhaps at being manhandled like that. “I did know, and that’s why I was trying to save him,” he enunciated slowly, as if talking to a small child.
“You’re lying,” Shinya growled.
“I am not. I would never want to see you succumb to weakness like this,” he said honestly, flaring Shinya’s already frayed nerves, his sanity pushed the breaking limit.
“Why the fuck would you care to do that? From the goodness of your heart I assume? Because you are of such noble character?” he mocked, his voice derisive and disgusted.
“No. I would never want to see my soulmate in that kind of pain,” Kureto spat out, his voice holding the tinniest bit of vulnerable emotions Shinya had ever heard.
The quiet descended like a blanket silencing everything from sounds to the feelings ragging in Shinya’s body, until nothing but a ringing tone of muffled confusion seemed to permeate it. The words simply did not register to Shinya at first, their sounds rejected by his mind until the real meaning behind what Kureto was trying to say would come to light. But it never did, and the other just kept his gaze steady and empty, waiting for the Shinya’s reaction.
And suddenly Shinya leapt backwards, his legs almost skidding over blood, his hands burning where they had touched Kureto, his mind horrified, too shocked to do anything more than to still on a singular word.
Kureto watched him impassively – he always seemed unfazed by anything Shinya did, always watching, calculating, observing, so detached by everything – not giving anything away for just having blown Shinya’s world into pieces with that admission.
“W-What are you talking about, Ni-san,” Shinya asked befuddled, grasping desperately to put his mask back on to cover his reaction, to muffle everything, as if to pretend the words had never been said if they both pretended they never had were.
“I do expect more from you, Shinya. I doubt you are an idiot. Well, you are an idiot,” he said after a small pause, “but not as much as everyone else does, though you love to pretend you are. And of course, only another idiot would fall for Ichinose of all people,” he continued as if they were having this still was the most normal conversation in the world. Shinya just stood there shocked and frozen to the core, shaking his head, his very being denying what his mind was processing, as everything happened in slow motion but all too fast, trying to comprehend how everything that happened was real, when they all seemed to be just a perfunctory illusion.
Kureto sighed deeply, a tired, reluctant sound coming from the depths of his being, before slowly walking closer towards Shinya, just as he continued to move backwards, as if distance would erase the last events, but it only ended up with him being the one crowded against a wall. Slowly, he raised his hand, and Shinya watched in fear, his heart thundering in his chest with the worst type of anticipation, as everything was wrong, wrong, wrong, far too wrong for him to be in this situation with Kureto, waiting for him to do something. He really tried not to flinch, but everything was too raw for him to maintain his cool mask, grasping at straws of mock pretend that seemed to fall apart into nothingness. Yet, his brother did nothing, just slowly wiped away a red patch of blood from his cheek, wait gloves blossoming beautifully into a weeping red.
“You know what I just told you,” and Shinya wanted to flinch, wanted to scream, would’ve preferred if Kureto had screamed at him, anything besides this whispering caress of gentleness he would never have imagined Kureto being capable off.
“No,” he whispered, even though in his mind the word was expressed with all the will of his soul. The skin where Kureto had touched him was burning, and Shinya for the first time since he had been taken in the Hiragi household felt afraid and disgusted and tainted, his skin prickling while bile burnt his insides slowly in revolt. It was so wrong, yet oddly touching in the most perverse way, and his head was reeling, oxygen taking his breath away.
“Why are you always trying to be difficult? Is it really in your blood for you to not obey me? To defy me at every turn?” And Shinya wanted to bite out that he had never wanted to do anything but defy all of them, but his words died on his lips as Kureto’s hand cupped his cheek gently.
“You are my soulmate,” he proclaimed assuredly, yet slowly, his amber eyes boring into Shinya’s, and it was so wrong, the colours were all wrong, and he was suffocating in a word of wrongness.
“But you aren’t mine,” he responded back, because there was nothing else to say to this random piece of nefarious unpredictability the world had shoved in his face once more.
“No, I am not,” Kureto confirmed slowly, carefully, after a pause, and they were so close, too close, and Shinya wanted nothing else but to break free, but he could not, because there was nothing he could do to break the hypnotising gaze of the one who had held his shackles for longer than a decade. And suddenly he wanted to laugh at the irony of it all, of how fate seemed to conspire against him at every turn. First Mahiru had a claim over Guren, something that was supposed to be his, and now Kureto had a claim over him. And it felt claustrophobic, his skin revolting and muscles twitching in the need to flee this other connection that bound him even tighter to the ones he had yearned to escape from. It was so ridiculous, and unfair, that he couldn’t but snap his head back trying to get away from the burning touch of the other, pain blooming into his skull as he let out a haunting laugh of self-deprecation.
“What’s so funny?” Kureto asked, and his expression was so open, so genuinely confused that Shinya laughed harder, mocking himself, and fate, and this world, and most of all he hated himself for wishing such a gentle touch would have been accompanied by a look of burning violet.
“How?” he rasped between laughs. “How is this even possible?”
“You knew already that it was possible,” Kureto affirmed, and Shinya just let out another bark of humourless laugh because that’s not what he had meant at all.
“And what now?” he asked, blue eyes boring into frozen amber. He couldn’t decide whose eyes looked more lifeless in between the two of them. “Why had you told me this? What do you want from me?” And he wanted to kill Kureto for the things his mind could conjure to ask for from him, no barriers to keep him safe away from whatever the other could wish to desire.
“Nothing,” and the response was immediate in the blunt, crisp honesty only Kureto seemed possible of using. “Why would I desire something from you after all?”
“Because I am your soulmate?” Shinya mocked.
“I have watched you, you know. Probably you do, you’re not actually the fool everyone seems to believe you to be. The first time I saw you was at that useless banquet that was held to welcome you in the family. More like presenting you to the others as the amazing mate and match you were to become for Mahiru, and showing off the Hiragi superiority over others. I don’t think you even paid attention to me after that initial greeting. But for me that moment had been very important, because all it took was one look in your eyes for this world to change all around us. So I watched you, but it was only devastatingly clear that you did not see anything from that encounter.” Kureto’s voice was mellow, and his eyes were not necessarily looking at Shinya anymore, lost somewhere in his own memories, as his fingers were drawing patterns of morbid gentleness over Shinya’s bloodied cheek.
“I thought it would just go on like this forever, you really didn’t care for all of these soulmate things and whatnot, but it was an obvious change when you met him. And it was even more obvious when you fell for him,” and as Kureto said the last part his eyes decidedly bore into his, trying to assess if Shinya were to deny his words that were just an absolutely truth. Shinya did not move, did not acknowledge what he had just been told, he just swallowed slowly, suddenly feeling the dangerous edge of whatever was happening. Still, he pressed on.
“He is my soulmate.”
“He is only a person that made you see the world in another way, and you never looked back after your encounter with him.”
“I do love him you know,” he countered back, boldly, unashamedly, as if his feelings were able to counter the truth lingering behind Kureto’s words. His admission though broke the conversation flow just enough for Shinya to ask something before the other had time to recover and respond.
“Kureto,” Shinya asked, no honorifics, no games, as a coldness rested over his sense, turbulent emotions fizzling out into a deep see of apparent calm, “what do you want?” Because Shinya even if he was surprised, even if he did not know what to do with Kureto’s sudden admission, he knew that there was an end to this game, and Kureto was not suddenly overcome by pointless sentiment.
Kureto paused for a second before speaking. “You don’t have to follow him.” And Shinya laughed because it was so stupid, because of course he didn’t to follow Guren anywhere. He wanted to.
“And follow you instead? Yeah, right. Haven’t I already sold my soul by giving everything away our plans like this in an attempt to save his life? I told you, I informally signed myself to be your fateful servant for eternity. So what more do you want?” he bit out.
“You don’t have to be that,” and the response was off putting enough that he didn’t come up with a snarky reply fast enough. “And you did not sell your soul. Your body, your will, your abilities, but no Shinya, you have always kept that soul very much away, belonging only to you alone.” A small part of Shinya’s brain wanted to just remark how creepy all that had sounded. Instead he asked, “So now you want my soul too?”
“It seems only fair when I did not have a choice in giving you mine.”
“Giving me yours?! Kureto, you could have fooled me. You haven’t given me anything,” Shinya hissed the words, contempt and sorrow evident behind it all.
“I could though, you know. Mahiru is basically a menace and will soon be annihilated. Guren is turning into a demon. Where does all that leave you Shinya?” And Shinya didn’t know, did not see an end in sight to this story, not a good one at least, but that would not mean he would not see it through as it was. It was the only choice Shinya had been allowed to make in all his life after all.
“Or you could choose me.” And as Kureto said it, Shinya’s mind stopped in its tracks again, not understanding what it was being offered. “You could leave him, stop clinging to him, and choose me.”
Choose him? Choose Kureto? The concept and the idea was so absurd it didn’t even make sense. It wasn’t ridiculous, it was simply impossible, and hearing it come from Kureto of all people made it seem more impossible than anything.
“But Guren is my soul-“
“Soulmate? At the end of this all he would barely be human anymore. Alive, worry not,” he added when he saw Shinya’s panic written all over his face. “That would assure you’d keep your colours, and basically you’d be free to make any choice you’d want.”
“I don’t understand,” and Shinya didn’t. His mind was barely putting together what Kureto was offering.
“You could let Guren to the faith he had decided upon, without thinking twice about it,” Kureto explained, slowly, as if repeating himself would make Shinya understand whatever was happening. “After all, he was just using your feelings against you to get one of the most faithful allies of them all. Yet, despite all that you did for him, he doesn’t care about you. He never did, it has always been her. And this way nothing would have to change, you’d just choose someone who cares about you. Someone who really loves you back.”
“And what are you saying? To abandon my soulmate because you love me? Do you even mean that?” Shinya asked dizzied by the sudden confession, as if Kureto being in love, being capable of such feelings, for Shinya nonetheless was actually possible. But Kureto didn’t answer, he just retreated swiftly, and Shinya was left staring towards his retreating back, the coldness of the room enveloping him, draining away the presence of Kureto’s closeness and warmth from his body.
Kureto did not look back as he approached the door, and Shinya wanted to yell, to demand answers, because it was not fair to have something like this sprung onto him, and for him just to leave. But his throat clogged up, and his thoughts were disappearing just before they were formed, as the world had turned upside down once more.
“Think about it,” Kureto threw over his shoulder, just before he left the room to leave Shinya alone with his life in shambles, to stare at the blood of the one person he had ever loved. “After all,” he continued, “the last time an Ichinose chose their soulmate it had split two allied clans apart.”
And just like that Shinya was left alone to think about everything that happened. But for the first time in a long time he did not want to think. He did not want to try to strategize on how to get the shambles of his life under control. He did not want to even consider what he had been offered.
Shinya wanted to scream his throat raw. For the first time in years he wanted for the immaculate control over his emotions to snap, and for him to break down, to find a way to liberate his soul from the burden of all these conflicted, burning emotions. Instead, he slowly lifted his sword, a foreign, unwelcome weight in his palm, as it had always been from the first time he had to use it at the beginning of this mission. He slowly pondered its steady weight, deadly and cold, so very cold, similar to his soul that seemed to crumble slowly into even smaller pieces with every passing second. Slowly, he lifted the sword, and with one swing the few intact desks in the classroom of Shibuya’s high school turned into wooden pieces to decorate the floor in between pools of crimson red.
Shinya sighed deeply, sheathing his sword, before he carefully – mechanically - left the classroom, along with the destruction and carnage found in it, behind him.
The room was dark, cast in the shadows of disappearing sun, petrol blue clouds covering the glowing sky with the empty strokes of a saddening twilight. The room was empty, saturated nuances of blue sorrow casting an almost ethereal glow to everything. Outside coldness slowly enveloped the earth, snow pillowing the ground, absorbing the sounds of a world that was slowly running towards the dusk of its life. Towards extinction.
There was no sound as Shinya stood frozen by the close hospital door, unaffected by the throbbing silence, by the coldness slowly caressing his fingers with promises of destruction of death, impervious to the light slowly dimming away. His feelings were cold, their monstrous intensity far too much for just one person to feel. It was a nostalgic feeling for Shinya the drowning in the dark, tumultuous tempest raging in his mind, until it seemed like nothing remained in its stead, when everything existed to such an extent it was far too painful to bear. He had long ago learnt to counter such ellipses of lucidity, dangerous lapses in a world created on a pile bloodied cadavers and shadows armed with an envious wish to drag anything alive in their depths, but everything that he had built in the last decade seemed to have crumbled into ashes to be swept away by an autumnal wind, as the world gave way to a frosty winter, since nothing ever made sense anymore.
A small sigh escaped him, his warm breath turning into a grey fog barely visible against the dark background, before his eyes slowly settled on the body lying in the lonely bed.
Fudas were lining the floor all around, the fragile paper containing the strongest spells known to mankind, slowly winding up like white veins of a tortured tree on the metal, fragile bed frame, before slowly clinging to the lonely figure lying on it. Shinya wondered detachedly just how many times he had come to the infirmary to be greeted by Guren’s unmoving body. Far too many probably.
Yet, despite all the other visits that had been surrounded by frantic panic and thinly veiled emotions, this one seemed more important than all the other visits from before, the weight of possibilities and outcomes shredding to pieces any unnecessary feelings. Because no matter what, before anything else, Shinya was still a skilled fighter, if not a very skilled assassin, and sentiments, as much as he had surprised himself with being able to feel in the past year, had no place here in this moment. But at the same time Shinya was an idiot, the biggest idiot of them all, since he knew already what he would choose – what he came here to choose - what he would do, so perhaps he could stop lying to himself about the nature of his heart.
His steps echoed hollowly, as he closed to the distance to the bed standing in the middle of the vacated hospital room. Behind it, the glass showed a clear reflection of the same living Tokyo – still alive, but for how much longer? – as the last dying rays of the sun turned away, leaving night to swallow the words he was about to say. He paid no to mind to where the border of the protective barrier started, a small undercurrent sizzling over his skin as he passed through it. Nobody had dared to come close to Guren after his demonic rampage, and his unmoving, tired body had been removed from the Shibuya First High School to be kept safely under observation – and heavy guard – to one of the hospitals owned by the Order of the Imperial Demon. The Imperial Demon researches at least had had the mind to leave their noisy testing for when he would be awake, instead deciding to seal Guren’s body behind every known magical barrier to wait for him to awake. Shinya knew that basically they just wanted to see if he had the demon under control when he awoke, whether he was still a threat to be executed, and then decide where to go from there. He did not care for any of those things, he didn’t have to; he knew it deep within himself that his Guren was much too stubborn to give in to a demon just like that.
As he reached the bed, Shinya stopped to look at Guren’s face. In his sleep he was peaceful, unmarred by the previous conflict or the blood he had spilled. There was no proof of the darkness hiding in his soul present on his peaceful face, none of the impressive strength of his character, none of rawness that had made Shinya’s tremble in recognition to a kindred spirit. Shinya watched impassively Guren’s beautiful features, his face angular, yet beautiful with chiselled features he could draw from memory alone.
In a dark interlude of his life granted by the soft veil of the night, surrounded by a curtain of snow that muffled the unheard cries of a starting carnage, Shinya spoke words for no one to hear.
“You are such an idiot, Guren,” he started and his voice seemed far too loud, far too clear and obvious in the quiet of the room. Yet, he continued. “Do you even know what that felt like? Do you know what could happen to either of us if the other was gone? Do you even care? Stupid,” he said fondly, even as his voice held at bay precariously an ocean of unmeasurable sadness. “But of course you had to do. Of course, you had to employ a demon, and attempt to control it. You wouldn’t be you otherwise…”
The pause stretched slowly, painfully before Shinya let a small frustrated yell that seemed to reverberate around the walls of the small room, his hand coming up frustrated to ruffle at his white locks.
“Ahhh, I am shit at talking about my emotions. And here I was trying to be all cool and serious Guren-chan, but I am awful, and you already know that,” he joked, amusement lighting up his tone. “Not that your personality is so much better in that regard,” he added as an afterthought, because Shinya could not miss the opportunity to make fun of Guren even when the other was unconscious.
“So many things happened after your little stunt that put you in here, you know?” he continued, his eyes still on Guren’s face, a small unhindered grin turning his lips upwards in a display of unusually vulnerable honesty that he seemed incapable of controlling near the other. “Kureto made me a shit offer, by the way. If you were awake and fine I would probably be freaking out about that, but right now I am kind of numb. Do you even know how shitty and messed up I am on the inside Guren-chan that I employ coping mechanisms like this?” Shinya joked, his tone light and amused as he let out words heavier than lead that he never thought he would have courage to say. But Guren was unconscious, and if someone needed to hear Shinya open up the dark caverns full of murky secrets from his soul, it was him. “Do you even know what I did? What I had to do? Would you even talk to me if you ever knew?” he asked, the questions stumbling out one after another, fervently, unstoppable tinged with desperation and self-hatred.
Shinya sighed. It was pointless to even think about these stuff after all. Time was coming to an end for this world, he could feel it deep into the aches of his tired bones and in every toxic inhale of toxic air that smelled of decay, desperation and brimstone. His hands lifted casually into the pockets of his jacket as he turned his gaze towards the window. Outside a street lamp shined merrily with putrid orange light illuminating a background of pure white snow. Cadavers had the same illuminance about them before they started decaying Shinya remembered with a small huff. He did not know whose body was the first one he had to see rot away in a disgusting display of his future fate.  
“But I am calm now, and I can think. Or I have gone completely mad, but you would know all about that, wouldn’t you Guren? It doesn’t matter, there is only one logical choice. If I were to choose rightly, to choose something to keep me alive, I wouldn’t hesitate to sell my soulmate and follow my own path depravation and destruction that would bring me the safety I have longed all my life for. And I was ready for it you know, sell this soul made of tar and thorns to try to relieve the suffering of a life I never chose for myself. Since there is no escaping it anyway, and no end to this cursed world, I might as well learn to conquer it through smiling faces that never show the cutting edges of my shattered will. It never mattered anyway, it never did, as long as I wasn’t dead. So I came here to tell you my choice, because I have been given a choice that would define both of our lives, and yet you have not a say in it.”
As he said the last word Shinya felt wrecked on the inside, the comfortable numbness long gone, dissolving slowly into words that he let out against all reason and choice, yet he couldn’t stop, syllables escaping his lips as if they would drown him if they weren’t given shape freely into words. And it was exhausting, and scary, and maybe Shinya was starting to think that this was more foolish than anything he had ever done in his life with every passing second, but he had to tell Guren this, because after he had made his choice there would be no coming back from it.
So Shinya returned his eyes unwillingly towards Guren’s unmoving face, as his chest convulsed in an unwilling panic. His heart was erratic, its beating all too fast, a repeated bum, bum, bum of a struggling consciousness, as the strings keeping his emotions in check were crumbling, leaving him falling, falling, falling in a sea of uncertainty and rawness.
Guren’s face was cold as Shinya’s fingers slowly spread to caress it, bending over the bed, over the beast that also resided now in Guren, daring it to come back to its senses and attack him, as he achingly caressed the face of the person he loved most in the world in a mimicry of passionate touch. But there was no love in the gesture, only desperation, and Shinya let out a shuddering breath which turned into wispy fog that spread in between the cold space separating their faces before he said the words that would damn both of them forever.
“Kureto asked me to be his soulmate, and give you up to be kept alive as his personal lab rat. And it is logical for me to accept it, it is kind of the only option I could have at this point to save my life. Only this remains for me with Mahiru wreaking havoc into the world. And the answer should be yes, but perhaps there is insanity finally fogging my mind because I can’t,” he admitted, not louder than a whisper his voice cracking on the syllables of his admission. “I can’t because it’s you, there is only you, and there is no way I could change that.” With a shuddering breath, he plunged further on, the confession burning in his eyes with unshed honesty, as his voice remained steady. “I can’t, because I love you, and there is only you. I love you, and I hate myself for it. I love you so much, and it hurts so much, but admitting isn’t fixing, so what does it worth? But I can’t, I can’t pretend anymore, I can’t deny myself the truth even if it’s disgusting. I am disgusting, because you are mine, and I wish you knew that. As I am yours. Because you gave me colour when there was only darkness, when I was sleeping only to get through the night that covered the world from before everything. You are my everything from the moment you gave me everything, and I hate myself for being cut out of cold marble, for talking when I shouldn’t be living, but I am living, and I am only alive thanks to you.”
Shinya stopped, and slowly traced the thumb cupping Guren’s face over his lip, slowly, a touch far gentler than anything he had ever done in ever before with his tainted hands. And in the darkness of the room, the colours were muted into hues of petrol blue, but even if this kind of darkness of the world reminded him off before, there was not denying that for Shinya Guren was the most beautiful thing he had ever touched, in colour, in monochrome, in this life or another.
“The world will go to hell. And maybe we will all die, but I do not care. And maybe survival would mean that I should take another path, but I do not care. Because no matter what other offers out there, what other paths there are, there is only you, and I will forever stick by your side. It seems as the right kind of trade after you gave me everything. And as that pitiful girl you love who succumbed into madness dictates your path that will only bring you an empire of sadness piled up onto the corpses of everyone we know, I will be there to stand by you. Because I am your soulmate.”
“Ne, Guren,” Shinya asked softly, as he placed his other hand to rest next on the other side of Guren’s head and leaning slowly into it bringing their faces even closer, until the fog that followed every exhale caressed Guren’s features in fleeting touches of cold gentleness. “If I told you I loved you, would you reach out and touch me?” Slowly, Shinya closed the space between them until his lips briefly touched Guren. It was a small caress, the whisper of a taste, hardly an ephemeral brush of skin, but the sweetness of an impossible future seemed to make Shinya’s insides tremble in warmth, clawing away in a bittersweet feeling of rightness and impossibility.
It was over before it started, but the spectre of the caress was still lingering and tingling on Shinya’s lips as he turned away slowly, his façade in check on his features, not giving away anything as his feelings were unwinding into an ecstatic peak of agony. Yet, despite the turbulent emotions there was a calm washing over his motions, an elated requiescence of the heart that came only with expressing the soul’s inner most sufferings.
As Shinya closed the door behind him to face the consequences of his first act of free will, in the dark, pale lightening of the room a pair of violet eyes followed his exit.
The air smelled like iron, and tasted like death. Every inhale seemed coated with despair at the carnage surrounding him. But it might have as well come from the inside, wherein an agonizing pain seemed to have taken place where his heart had used to reside, misery coating his lungs until breathing felt like dying. But instead he was painfully alive, painfully complete, surrounded by the dead corpses of his friends. And Guren felt a vindictive jealousy towards the cowardice of Mahiru’s plan, her death so plain, so unfit to the ebbing, bloody, merciless sun she had resembled in the last moments of her life.
“This is your fault you know?”
And Guren gave out a lifeless snort, the sound echoing hollowly in the underground laboratory with mirthless amusement, a void distorting the sound until it turned into a cry of a barren soul. Because it was his fault, and he had never felt the press of guilt crushing his mind ever like this before, twisting and mangling until only the guilt remained for him to taste it’s astringent poison.
“It is,” and his voice was empty, devoid of any emotion because there wasn’t anything left to feel. And he didn’t know if Kureto blamed him for what he had started outside or for the bodies lying lifelessly in front of him, frozen, dead, revenants of his foolishness. Because what a fool had he been. What a foolish, stupid, greedy human, and before he had realised anything it had been too late.
He couldn’t help it as another laugh escaped him, but it seemed similar in its cry to a sob, the sound taking his breath from his lungs, resonating with the sorrow numbing his fingers and churning his stomach, before finally raising his head to look at the other man watching him kneel. The empty cursed sword was still tightly held in between his hands, as it had been from the moment from the moment he had thrust it deeply in the middle of the ceremonial circle, his knees not feeling the concrete digging into his skin painfully, as he was brought down under the weight of sins. A cold was separating him from the outside world, muffling his senses, his feelings, because he hadn’t realised he was willing to sacrifice everything in his search for power but this one person.
Kureto was watching his impassively, standing over him, his eyes unmoving with crude judgement, but he was a faded image from a broken past. Not even his icy glare could change what he was seeing. Everything had changed irreversibly, the world intrinsically different from how it had been for the better half of a year – had it been so little? it seemed as if an eternity had passed since then - as now it was a shadow devoid of colours, everything muffled by monochromatic shadows of fading greys.
The last colour he had seen clearly was Shinya’s blood. The last distinctive nuance that had faded into grey, fluttering helplessly in a sea of achromatic hues, had been Shinya’s blue eyes dimming into nothingness as they had drawn him in with unstated, gentle feelings, as well as love, so much love, a gentle luminescent, pure adoration that had hurt Guren worse than all the helplessness or fury or anger or sorrow he was going to confront his whole life against from that moment further on. Shinya had smiled, as crimson blood was pouring out of his chest, leaking through the corner of his mouth – a crimson red tainting a pure white skin - coating everything, in a dark, wet, warm red. And as it flowed out, Guren had realised horrified that everything around himself had started to dim, colours slowly fading out like an ominous decay of a beautiful picture just before it disintegrated into ash. And then it had been grey, only grey, and black, and white, a monotone world reflecting the absence of his soulmate as Shinya died in his arms with a small smile gracing his lips, and Guren’s whole being was a bleeding wound never to heal or fade, as if something had been ripped apart from the very core of the tangles that made his being.
Kureto watched him impassively until their eyes met. Guren detachedly thought how stupid this was; only hours ago he had been able to tell every nuance of unbending amber from the other’s gaze, but now there was nothing, only monotony, only grey. But how could he imagine there being something anyway when Shinya’s blue was never going to light up in the world. Guren found it fitting to want to suffer the remainder of the other’s death, it only made sense that a world devoid of Shinya would be painted in mourning colours, as if existence itself regretted his disappearance. Now, everything around him was made out of ash – choking, suffocating, clogging, heavy, heavy, far too heavy- and he felt as if he was blind, like the world had lost all its purpose and beauty with the lack of colours. How had been able to live like this before? How could he endure it? How could he endure living in a world where Shinya was dead?
“Stop pitying yourself,” Kureto snapped, but Guren didn’t react. The warm blood on his clothes had started drying out slowly a cold stickiness marring his skin invisibly, the dark liquid indistinguishable from his black uniform to his achromatic vision. “You don’t get the right to do that after everything,” and maybe it was the first time in his twisted life Guren thought he had heard Kureto Hiragi close to breaking. He wanted to rejoice, but there was nothing in him left to do so, there was only a hole crumpling and expanding, wishing to completely strangle him with every breath. There was no victory in this; Shinya had brought him down to his knees as much as he had dragged Kureto Hiragi down his high horse, but he guessed if there was one way he would’ve chosen to see the other crumble this was the most fitting one. He would’ve laughed if he could by imagining Shinya’s reaction to this whole situation. ‘Ne, Guren, is my death so bad? I mean look at this stuck up asshole hurting over it too. Maybe it wasn’t in vain then.’ And the words were so real, the voice so vivid, syllables tinged with amusement, and passing glimpses of a familiar smile replaying in his mind that Guren suddenly felt a sob want to break out, a shudder of his whole soul mourning the loss of what had been his better half.
“I knew the moment he died,” the other continued, his voice oddly emotional. “Well, you did too, but you’ve seen it. For me the world just started losing colour. Until I reached you, there was nothing left but this,” and Kureto spat the world hatefully as he took in their surroundings. “And you, of course. Tell me did you even care about him? Did you even realise he loved you?”
The accusation hurt, and Guren wanted to say he knew, of course he had known, only that he hadn’t, not until Shinya had uttered the words to his almost unconscious body. And even then they had seemed more like a dream than reality.
“Maybe then he should have stayed by your side?” he snapped back monotonously, the pain and confusion whirling inside him.
“But he loved you,” Kureto emphasised, and Guren was surprised to see bitterness paint the other’s face. “Whatever good that did him.”
It wasn’t the words that made him break eye contact, it was the lack of breath that came with the unimaginable pain and sorrow, guilt slowly overflowing the shards of broken glass Shinya’s death had left beneath his skin. And even if the experiment worked Guren was sure he wouldn’t forget this particular moment. He could never forget the hollowness of the world turning back to monochrome, he couldn’t forget the warmth of Shinya’s blood as it slowly dribbled through his clothing in a slow welcoming of death, the pain of it all similar to a steering wheel crushing his bones, squeezing his heart through his chest. Looking away, Guren’s hand slowly traced the dry patches of blood on his face. But he could no longer recall Shinya’s warm touch, who before dying slowly caressed his face with weak, clumsy fingers trying to soothe him, or recall how sweet Shinya’s last kiss he had struggled to give him –a chapped touch tasting of sorrow and dying - had been. Guren could only remember the horror as the world reduced singularly to Shinya’s blue eyes slowly dying out, even as his words thanked him for giving him the opportunity to love him. He could only remember the still marble of his features, perfection even in death, and devoid of all colours as Guren had to carry him one last time towards the coffin that would –hopefully- resurrect him, the feel of the frozen body chilling his bones, his pores, his thoughts, because the last dying light of the world had been a deep ocean of blue that did not shed any tears for its imminent death.
And it was too much for Guren, a tear slowly escaped him, as unbridled fury burnt in his bones, acidic and poisonous, for all that had happened because of himself and because Mahiru. They had both used Shinya, they both had been responsible for his death, and he wanted to bring her back to life just to make her feel how it would be to live in such an empty world by taking his own life away. But there was enough time to loathe her later. There was enough time to hate himself later too, his hatred only outmatched by his sorrow, the taste of bitter, crushing defeat turning into burning bile in the back of his throat.
“This will work,” he finally settled on answering, and Kureto Hiragi let a mirthless laugh, his hand leaving the sheath of his own sword to hide his eyes in a gesture of complete and utter maddened amusement.  
“Do not be ridiculous. The fact that I know it will work is the only reason that you are still breathing at the moment,” he answered and in the next second he was just as composed as before, back to being stoic and unemotional. Guren supposed that was fair. He himself didn’t want to live beyond seeing Shinya and his friends come back to life. And maybe, in that moment, in the whole world Kureto was the only one that could understand his pain and self-hatred.
“Shinya is a necessity for the future of human kind now, after what you’ve started.” The affirmation was so ridiculous, because there was no way Shinya was a necessity for anyone else besides themselves. It didn’t matter in the end. He didn’t care for what reasons the other excused his action with. Guren was finally going to be honest with himself because there was no else to be honest to; the bodies of all the people he had ever cared about surrounded him in a patronising display of punishment for his arrogance. He didn’t care about humankind anymore, he had proved the moment he plunged the sword into the cold floor and activated the experiment Seraph of the End that would just kill everyone. He didn’t care for revenge, or spite, or necessities. The only thing on his mind was that the longer the world seemed to crush him on all sides in shades of black and white, the longer he had to count to remember Shinya’s smile.
He had to count to ten before he remembered the other’s teasing smile, and how the sun’s glowing ray’s made his blue eyes twinkle against the background of Tokyo they could see surrounding Shibuya First High School.
He had to count to seven before he remembered the ethereal beauty Shinya seemed to possess at any time, a being made out marble and glass, deadly, yet so soft.
He had to count to five before he remembered how his warmth felt like, the smell and feel of his body when he had hugged him, and the singular touches of their lips. Could those two instance even count as kisses? Would those be the only kisses Guren received from Shinya? Not that he deserved the other’s love.
He didn’t have to count at all to remember how the words fell from the other’s lips. He didn’t have to try to remember how Shinya’s voice sounded like – be it whispered in the secrecy of the night, or rasped out just before dying – saying how much he loved him.
“Shinya is a necessity to me too. He is necessary to me,” he finally admitted to the other. Silence greeted his words, but he didn’t expect Kureto to answer anyway.
Outside snow was piling out slowly, as screams of agony and despair filled the air, their echoes adding to the emptiness of the silence ringing in the underground laboratory, muffled sounds converging with a world of muffled colours and muted feelings.
And they waited, a slow agonising wait, two broken humans lost in tones black and white of a dying world. And Guren felt a stir in him in that quiet purgatory, caught in between feeling too much and nothing at all. There was no salvation coming his way for the foolishness of this all. There was no excuse for what he had done. But he had done it anyway. And he would make sure it was done again and again, as many times as it was necessary, for this amazing person that had had the misfortune of having his soul tied to his forever. Because it was the least Shinya deserved.
A nuance of blue fluttered slowly in the corner of his eyes, a string of his broken soul retying itself into place as the world started moving once more.
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nosocialjaila-blog · 6 years
Grandpa’s Theory of Reality
I felt my teeth close to shattering inside my mouth. I tumbled on the floor, and my back slammed against the lockers, creating a rattling sound of how much force I was hit with. I looked through the crack of my hair that was covering my forehead. Eden stood tall to represent his dominance compared to mine. I’ve never talked to Eden before; he wasn’t relevant enough for me to remember. I don’t recall doing any mischievous acts this past week either. In seconds, a man with thick black glasses, ran to where every student had their attention on. His gray hair was falling out; I remembered him briefly saying it was because of the stress he dealt with back home. He glanced at me and collected his thoughts before sighing. He pinched the bridge of his nose, and then turned around to the spectating students. I continued to feel the neverending stinging sensation on my right cheek. It felt like little needles stabbing me when I tried to change my facial expressions. I raised my right hand that was trembling. I cupped my swollen, heated cheeks, and softly brushed my thumb across.
“She can’t even buy me a new phone. Even after all the things I’ve done for her! My dad is the same. He always takes her side. If it’s not about me changing who I am, it’s about school, and my grades! There’s no support from them. I wish that they could just--”
“I find you pathetic, you know that? A joke. I see you as a selfish creature. That’s all,” I said to her, without my eyes wandering around.
“What?” she said in a nervous chuckle.
“Yeah,” I paused, “You keep blabbing about how much your parents keep pestering  you about your education. If they are so damn annoying, get a job, live alone, do something useful for once.”
She frowned. “Why are you talking like that?”
“Because I can’t stand people like you. People like you disgust me.” I placed my coat and beanie on. Without another word, I left her alone at the swingset, when it was freezing cold and midnight.
I breathed into my hands to keep warm. I carried a plastic bag of Chinese food down a gravel path with trees surrounding the area. I walked down the rocky path where my grandfather was buried. It’s an old cemetery, and usually no one would be here, but today, I noticed a family sobbing in front of a gravestone. The mother had flowers wrapped around her arms; the father was holding his young daughter with pigtails.
The flowers and boxes I left before were still sitting on my grandfather’s grave.
“Hey, old man,” I said, before I sat down.
I unwrapped the plastic bag, and pulled out two boxes of rice and fried noodles. My grandfather used to buy Chinese food for me when I felt uninvited at my father’s house. For someone so old, he was quite adventurous and ready to go places. I snapped my two chopsticks apart, and I began tugging up the noodles out of the box. The two flavors mixed well with each other. A taste of overpowering salty fried food, and a plain taste of white rice to keep it balanced.
“This game sucks!” I complained to grandpa.
He laughed at me and handed me my box of food. Grandpa and I were playing one of his old board games. It was complicated with numbers and names. It’s about stealing property and traveling back in time.
“It’s more a puzzle than a board game,” he told me, after taking a bite out of his food. “Time is an important thing. It gives us reality. That’s what this game is actually about.”
I looked down at the game once more. I saw no evidence of this game actually being educational and significant to my life. I shrugged my shoulders at him.
“With time, our lives are all connected. Humans are incredible creatures. We tend to overlook our differences, rather than looking at what we all share in common. The air we breathe, the water we need, the earth we share, the universe we conquered. We all strive for the same things in life.”
“What is it?” I asked.
“Happiness, and the support to reach that happiness. Humans are selfish creatures.”
“I don’t really see life that way, old man,” I chuckled.
“You don’t?”
I shook my head at him, and touched my character piece for the board game. It was the shape of a bird that had its wings spread. I was only seven years young, but I felt mature enough to understand grandpa’s words.
“Tell you what,” grandpa paused, “Why don’t you tell me the five senses you learned so far?”
I tapped my finger on my lips. “There’s smell, touch, taste, sight… and hearing?”
He nodded with a smile. “There’s many more, but those five, you’ll experience reality in all shapes and forms. For example, let’s say you walk into a room, and it smells like cigarettes. What do you associate that smell with?”
I laughed, “Dad.”
“See? With the simplest things, lives can be connected with memories and sometimes, the future. Things like objects, music, food, color, numbers. Every human is significant to life and we all were born with values. The world syncs together with our senses and perception. Humans are connected with the universe, even what is invisible to the eye, we are still connected. You can experience the unreal if you finally start accepting reality.”
I didn’t believe him. I didn’t really want to see the world that way.
With severe caution, I tried to focus on myself and my surroundings. I wanted to talk to my father for a change. I wasn’t planning to go too far and join him for dinner, but I wanted to remind him that I still exist. I dawdled down the main hallways of the school, and turned corners until I reached his classroom. My father’s been a teacher for officially six years now. It was two hours after school was over, so I didn’t see anyone here, except him. His door was slightly cracked open. Before I barged in, I heard him singing to himself in a hoarse voice. I leaned my body against the wall and chuckled with my hand over my mouth. I started to I listen intensely to the song he chose to sing. It sounded familiar with slow instrumental and beat.
“The normal routine?” the pretty bartender asked, after she had wiped the table next to me.
I gave her a friendly nod. Seeing a therapist wasn’t helpful, and to be frank, I wasted a good amount of money on answers I could’ve found on the internet. The White Rabbit is where I drown myself to avoid my son at home. I guess on some level I wanted to blame him for tearing up the perfect family photo. I shouldn’t blame him, but subconsciously, I do. A waiter sent me a plate of oily french fries and drinks that I’d soon consume before midnight. Out of the blue, my wife and I’s anniversary song goes on the speakers. I slouched down in my chair, then proceeded to pick and play with my fries. Each lyric and each beat used to be my happiness and future, now, I felt sadness and sorrow.
“Tell me about it, Doc,” my co-worker demanded, after he sat down with a bottle of beer in his right hand. His white lab coat was stained with drinks from earlier.
I knew he’d follow me around until he was satisfied. “How’s your son?” I questioned.
“He told me to go to hell, so, I came here.”
I laughed at how sarcastic he could be, yet serious, too. “How do you not get angry at him for disrespecting you like that? How do you not get anxious that one day you’ll fail to save a patient's life?”
I changed the subject quite fast because I secretly didn’t want to know why he was so easy going, and I wasn’t. He raised a brow, and took a sip from his drink before he responded.
“My son isn’t a patient, Wes. I know that teenagers, they don’t think before they speak. Teenagers, they go through that change in high school where they deal with emotions and stress. I’m not the only person giving him a hard time at life. What he goes through, is the same things I go through. That’s what family is.”
I picked up my glass and began drinking to end the night with a positive feeling. I didn’t quite understand what he meant, but I should since I have a son too.
“I miss my wife,” I finally admitted, coming out of my shell.
“You’ll miss your son more if you keep this up.” He gave me a smile, and picked up one of my glasses before I did.
I waited outside of the flower shop for it to open. In my right hand, I held a black umbrella to keep the rain from soaking the thin layers of clothing I wore. I figured that my grandfather should get more flowers if I’m going to visit him. I listened as the sound of raindrops trickled down off the building, onto my umbrella, and made a rumbling sound. The entrance door opened, and I saw a middle-aged woman looking at me with large eyes. She paused for a split second, and then moved to the side to invite me in. Once the owner walked off to the backroom, I began to explore the shop. It was spring, yet the flowers looked dead and sad. At the corner of the store, I noticed a bundle of purple vivid flowers in a small vase. I walked near them, and scanned at each pedal, whether they were dying or not. I smiled at the results and leaned forward to get a whiff of the smell. It smelt like the hospital.
“Grandpa?” I asked, tugging on his shirt with my tiny hand.
My grandpa glanced down at me. “Yes, Benny?”
“Mom said she’d play hopscotch with me and dad. Does she feel better?”
Starting tomorrow, it’d be a week since the incident happened, and since mom’s been resting in the hospital. I trust in grandpa and the doctors with their words on mom going to be okay in the end.
“Hmm… not better, but she will eventually. How about we check on your father?” he suggested, and proceeded to grab my hand. “Do you know where he is?”
“Dad’s in the potty room. He said he had a stomachache. I didn’t want him to throw up on me.”
My grandpa let go of my hand. His face scrunched up, and he wiped his tears away with the palm of his hand. He left me alone in the waiting room. I figured he went to check on my dad to see if he was okay by himself. I quickly scurried off down the halls to find mom’s door, once the doctors had disappeared. She wasn’t feeling good, and the doctors and grandpa wouldn’t explain why. I saw her a few days ago. I entered room 342; that’s where mom was. She laid down on the bed with tubes and machines hooked up to her. Mom’s eyes were closed, and she seemed to be more in pain today than yesterday.
“Mom?” I sat next to her bed. “Mom? What happened to your fingers?”
Mom’s fingers were covered in cuts and purple bruises. I grabbed her hand gently, and rubbed my thumb across the large scar on her palm. I felt a strange pain in my stomach. The touch of her hand felt cold and weak. I felt like she wasn’t asleep any longer, nor was she awake. I didn’t hear her breathe in that loud snore she made when she’s asleep. I looked around the room for grandpa, but he was nowhere to be seen. The room was bland and gray. The only color that stood out was a purple bouquet of flowers by the doctor’s sink. I let go of the cold touch, and ran to the flowers. They smelt like the outside when our family would go camping in the spring, but also, they smelt like the hospital. I brought it back to the bed, and started to take each flower out of the bundle one-by-one. I placed them in her hand where I previously held with my hand. Just like that, my mother slowly curled up her fingers, and held the flowers with all the strength she had left with her.
I stood in the living room with a blank expression on my face. I was locked in the corner with my two feet glued to the floor. This was a new house, and I was in a different state and city. Yet, this place gave me a clear image of what went down on a cold Friday afternoon. I felt it all tingling inside me. The touch of fire, the smell and taste of gas polluting the air, the sound of the crackling house, and the sight of fear in my mother’s eyes. This “experience” I had, it was threatening me; it was lurking behind me until I experienced it again.
My parents were bickering back and forth, because dad kept losing money from playing card games. Mom told me to stay inside the house, and occupy myself since she wouldn’t be able to watch me. I played with my toys and listened to the TV in the background. I found my father’s pack of cigarettes tucked in between the wall and the back of the couch.
“You were just a kid,” I heard someone tell me.
I blinked three times and saw my father in the kitchen. He just finished mowing the lawn; it was my job, but I never followed his house instructions. He took off his cap, and wiped his forehead with the hem of his shirt.
“You see it, too? You see the horrific sight I see every night?”
I gulped at his brief description, and nodded. “Do you blame me?”
“I do,” he paused, “but I’m the one who smokes.”
I scratched the back of my head and finally took off my shoes. I walked in the living room and touched the walls. I remembered the walls peeling off and cracking, when the fire spread throughout the room.
“Benny!” she called out for me, “Benny! Come here!”
My mom searched the entire house for her only child, and I didn’t even attempt to move my legs. I cupped my ears and squatted in a ball. I was too afraid that she’d be mad at me for starting a fire in their new home. I could imagine my dad’s face if he found out I was playing with his matches and cigarettes. I ran, and ran, into the woods behind a small park near. I could still faintly hear her screams and cries. They echoed in my ears as I got further away from the visible black smoke behind me. I slipped on mud, and stumbled down a hill. My back slammed against a tree. I squeezed my body to hide. Too many scenarios had entered my head for me to relax. Tears streamed down my cheeks, to my chin, and splattered on my shirt. The sight of a burnt out campfire was the last picture in my mind.
“Do you think she blames me?” I hesitated to ask.
“No,” he said quickly, “Your mother is a far better person than I am. Your mother, she had burns from her head to toes. I left that house without a scratch.”
I started to become very nauseous from the overwhelming memories. I started to see mom’s face again; a pure face I erased from my memory to avoid the guilt and pain I caused. I understood why I am overly sensitive. I understood why I rejected Eden’s sister when she talked badly about her own parents.
“I’m sorry,” I mumbled, “I ruined your life. I’m sorry I stopped you from saving lives.”
He was surprised to know I was capable of apologizing. He walked towards me with his hat dangling in his hand. He couldn’t forgive me for killing the one person he loved entirely, but really, he couldn’t forgive himself. I could tell. The look in his eyes gave it away. Maybe it wasn’t his eyes. Perhaps, it’s the fact that humans really have no differences when it comes to reality. That reality is an illusion that can only be figured out if you accept it.
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