failing at being normal with new obsessions when u used to be a wolf kid
Limbo | One-Shot (Namjoon)
Rating/genre: PG13, idiots/friends to lovers; fluff, angst, slightly suggestive
Pairings: Namjoon x Reader
Warnings: Slight suggestiveness, just a bunch of making out and miscommunication lol, Joon thinks he took advantage of reader for a bit but he didn’t at all from her perspective, essentially he’s just overthinking and being a protective lil pabo
Word Count: 4.5k
Summary: You hardly ever go a week without seeing your best friend (that you’re disgustingly in love with). But after one accidental - very hot - kiss, everything has changed.
A/N: This is my secret santa gift for the lovely @raplinesmoon!! Isi, I had such a wonderful time messaging you and getting to chat with you over the last few weeks :) I really really hope you like this. I really tried despite all my stumbles into writers block over the past like week haha. Grab a cup of hot chocolate, sit back, and enjoy :D
It was at your place, where it happened. Almost everyone was gone already, only Jungkook and Jimin lingering in the kitchen, their soft chatter wafting through the main floor as they brought the used glasses to your sink.
The credits on the movie were still playing. For some reason neither of you had moved to stop them, letting the soundtrack fill the spaces between your words as you recounted your thoughts of the ending to each other, casually, like it was nothing. Because it was nothing. Two friends always enthralled by what settled in the crevices of each other’s minds.
You had slid down on the couch gradually as the movie had played, feet up on the coffee table, side pressed closer to Joon, stealing his warmth. He never minded and you had gotten over any internal conflict you had about touching him – it was nothing. Completely mundane.
But at some point before the credits ended, you’d ended up turned towards each other, his hand in your hair as he cradled your jaw up towards him. Then your lips were touching, the first time ever, and you didn’t even know how it happened but it was happening and you were losing your mind, sure that it was a dream or possibly a nightmare.
He pressed in, trapping you between him and the couch, mouth enveloping yours as a hand tugged your hip closer to him, legs tangling automatically. Stealing your breath.
No control, you kissed him harder. It was careless, touching him like this. Namjoon wasn’t often careless so it had to have been you, striking a spark in hopes it would catch in him as well.
You would’ve never normally done this. You didn’t understand why you had, only that it was happening and that he was kissing you back so gorgeously that you felt your heart being dragged out through your throat.
You had never fallen for a best friend before and you never would again. You hated it. Why did anyone do this? Love – as you knew it – was messy, scary, overwhelming. New and unpredictable in the best and worst ways. But Namjoon was everything else. He was the calm, the soft, the worn-in, the gentle waves, the very rhythm of comfort.
Two things, impossible to reconcile.
This year had rewritten your relationship to him, even if he had no idea.
January, a twisted ankle and him shovelling your driveway for you every snowfall even after you had healed. February, half-off Valentine’s chocolates and convincing him to watch Grey’s Anatomy with you (it didn’t take much). March, late night calls from his friends’ because they all got too drunk to drive him home and he knew you’d save him. April, lazy rainy days listening to songs together, one pick by him, one pick by you. May, fresh flowers for no reason. June, endless bike rides in all your favourite spots, warm sun, wind in your hair.
July, shrinking internally when he told you he went on a date – ‘she was really nice’. August, a new art gallery, your cat choosing his lap over yours, trying to teach him how to cook a real meal without burning down his apartment. September, reading his favourite book, the copy he leant you, trying not to fall more in love with him. October, him reading your favourite book, swiftly falling more in love with him. November, spending all your free time at his studio, reading in the corner while he worked hastily on a coming deadline, bundled up in the silence.
And now here you were. December, shuffling your body closer, arching to him, feeling his solid muscles against every part of you. You really were out of control, drunk despite not drinking. Hopeless despite never having let yourself hope in the first place that the two of you could be anything.
In the darkness of the living room, the back of the couch a mountain to shield you from the real world, your tongues moved against each other, your hands gripping at his shirt. Was this what it was like to kiss Joon? Tender and hot and slow and needy. How lucky all those girls were to get to kiss him like this.
When you both pulled back, his lips hovered not even an inch from yours, hot breaths mingling together as hearts raced inside chests.
“I’m sorry,” you whispered before he had a chance to do the same, letting your hold on the fabric loosen. It was all that you could think, knowing you’d messed up, already mad at yourself for doing something so stupid. An entire year of prudence, gone in the blink of an eye.
He floated back a bit, face blank, eyes unfocused on something between you.
Unmoving, terrified, you spoke softly again: “I-I don’t know what just happened but I–...”
But when he finally looked up, his lips were pressing together. He only stayed where he was for another moment before pulling back fully then another and he was standing, leaving you alone on the couch to watch, immobile as he got up and pulled his sweater back on.
“I’m gonna go,” he finally spoke, almost like he was somewhere else already and it was so unsettling it made you shiver. He was gone before you could even reply.
You hadn’t seen Namjoon all week but you’d wanted to. He hadn’t given you a single chance. And you weren’t pushy enough to demand it. Not after what had happened.
You hadn’t seen Namjoon all week but there he was, walking up to the door, a simply-wrapped present in his hands, making you wait a full minute before you dared get out of the car even though you were just about to be in the same house as him anyway. You’d thought you were early – to help set up. Why was he here so soon?
Frozen snow crunched under your feet as you walked up, your legs feeling heavy. You felt heavy. Inside, it was much warmer but you didn’t feel any better, taking off your thick coat as Hoseok and Jiah welcomed you with big smiles. She wrapped her arm around your shoulder, hugging as she walked you into the empty kitchen.
“Oh, yeah,” you said somewhat believably, eyes scanning over the food cooking on the stove. More quietly, you added: “Does he seem normal?”
She didn’t answer right away, prompting you to look at her from where you’d settled on one of the island chairs. “I mean, he’s only just gotten here so… I don’t know,” she replied and it was too careful for your liking.
“So… yes?” You pushed a little teasing smile onto your face and she returned it albeit a bit more painfully before shrugging.
“I don’t know. He does to me but you know him much better than I do.” She was right. You did.
“Has Hobi said anything?”
“He doesn’t want to get involved.” She began to stir one of the pots. “Which I understand.”
“Ji… he’s barely responding to my texts. What am I supposed to do?”
“I’m not saying anything,” she responded, free hand coming up in light defence. “But now that you’re both here…”
“You think he wants to talk about this at Christmas? He’s had all week to talk to me,” you sighed, trying not to get too anxious but it wasn’t really working. Sure, you were annoyed with Namjoon. But you were much much more annoyed with yourself.
The funny thing about it was… no matter how mad you were at someone else, it always turned to sadness. And no matter how mad you were at yourself, it always turned to shame. You wanted to just be mad at him. Why couldn’t you just be mad at him for kissing you back like that and then retreating from your life so abruptly?
But no, after about five seconds of anger, all your pillow knew was tears. Because you had so royally fucked up that he couldn’t stand to be around you apparently. While you were barely standing at all.
Jiah lifted the spoon from the pot and brought it to your lips. “Here.”
“One freaking week and I miss him,” you said before opening your mouth to receive the offering, the warm savoury liquid trickling down your throat in a comforting way.
“I know you do, babe.”
You were staring at your hands now, able to hear the guys laughing together in the other room. It sounded like Jimin was here too.
“Just go talk to him.”
Face scrunching slightly, you made a pathetic little moan as you curled up into yourself, retreating into your sweater. “It’s too early for that.”
“Don’t wait until the end of the night when people get stupid,” she said teasingly. That was your favourite time to make a fool of yourself apparently.
“When are they getting here?”
“Not until 7.”
“That’s so far away.” Great. So much time with just the few of you.
“I needed help!” she explained as she turned the burner down, placing the spoon on its little reindeer holder.
“I can’t believe you still haven’t put up your Christmas decorations. It’s literally Christmas Eve.”
“We’ve been busy. I haven’t even had a chance to make something for dessert. Which, speaking of...” She dragged out the word as she sent you an imploring look.
“Ok, fine. That I can do,” you agreed, hopping out of your seat towards the baking cupboard, relieved that you could be in your own little world for the next little while.
It wasn’t long before you were truly alone in the kitchen, able to hear Jiah delegating tasks to the guys while you began to measure out perfect quarter cups and half cups. It was peaceful, mixing the ingredients in nice and slow, ignoring the bustling in nearby rooms as decorations went up and the table got set.
It was after the third thing got dropped, bouncing against the carpeted floor, a chorus of mostly teasing complaints being lauded at the culprit, that you found yourself with a visitor. One that made your chest constrict a little bit.
“Hey.” He was smiling, still laughing even as he came through the archway, leaning forward on the counter across from you, hands gripping the edge. “I’ve been assigned to be your helper.” He sounded too comfortable, like it was all too easy for him and that hurt more than you realized it could.
“My helper?” Perhaps you could channel the same thing. You didn’t really have a choice. The only other option was to start tearing up then and there and you refused.
“Jiah thinks it’s safer.”
Safer. Ha. For who?
“Unless you don’t want me in here… I’ll probably make things worse,” he joked, looking just a little unsure as he smiled across the counter at you, eyes moving between the work your hands were doing and your face.
You smiled with him but you were too aware that it was because he expected you to, because you normally would have. The awkwardness was crushing, rotting you from the inside. You didn’t feel like yourself and you knew it was painfully obvious no matter how hard you tried to feign normalcy.
“You can, uh… grab the chocolate chips from down there.” Hands busy flattening the dough into a slab, you pointed with a nod of your head. “May as well make some of those too.”
“Two kinds of cookies? You’re spoiling us.”
“I’ve got a helper now so…” you played but it came out flatter than it should’ve.
When he came back over, tossing the bag on the counter with a little smack, he just watched you carefully evening out the dough, getting it ready to be cut into various shapes. Did you think he could he manage to whip together some royal icing?
“Do you wan–?”
“I’m sorry I’ve been weird this week.”
His words made you pause, mind still stuck on the stupid cutters and icing because it was a much simpler place to be. You literally had to shake your head clear before looking at him.
“I didn’t know what to say,” he continued awkwardly, staring at the counter now. “I wanted to apologize but that didn’t seem like enough so…”
So he just ignored you instead? What the fuck, Joon?
Your mouth twitched, brows furrowing slightly. Anger… straight into sadness as your nose pricked slightly. It wasn’t even that he didn’t want you. Just that he’d left you alone in your thoughts, even when you’d plucked up the courage to text him, check in on him. All you’d gotten in response was a short: ‘Sorry, really busy. Talk soon.’
With a nod, you focused back on what you were doing. Words were really hard. Especially with that little lump in your throat.
The dough needed to be thinner.
“I really am sorry. I would never want to hurt you.”
This wasn’t helping. Fuck. You blinked, sucking in a quick breath as you sprinkled a bit more flour onto the rolling pin. “It’s ok, Joon,” you finally said as lightly as you could. And it was ok. Not the part about this fucking up your friendship – no, that was devastating. But the part about him not loving you, not being able to go down that road with you; it was ok. You understood.
“I felt sick afterwards, honestly.”
Your stomach knotted, face scrunching up in confusion as you looked at him, appearing small even with his imposing stature, staring down at his hands where he was nervously playing with his fingers.
“I can’t believe I let myself do that.”
It was quiet, his words, the room, your mind. You could hear a pin drop in there.
Just as quietly, you put down the rolling pin and asked: “What are you… talking about?”
It broke your heart how lost he looked when his head tilted up to look at you. “When I kissed you? Out of nowhere?”
You were still frozen like a statue, hands covered in flour and butter held awkwardly in front of you. When he kissed you…
When he kissed you.
“W–wh… I–” you spluttered, the tiniest breath of a humourless laugh coming out as you spun on your heels to try to find something to clean your hands, not registering the sink right beside you, and taking far too long to grab a piece of paper towel. You blinked hard as you wiped your hands aggressively. “Sorry, I’m confused.”
“Oooh! We making cookies?” came Jimin’s jovial tone, his smile eclipsing the whole room as he walked in, Jiah in toe, watching you carefully.
Your gaze moved from the new arrivals back to Joon who was stepping away from the counter, clearly trying to shake his anxiety off by pushing a soft smile onto his face for your friends.
“Working on it, yeah,” you said once you’d found your voice again, looking down at the spread of dough to try to remind yourself what the fuck you were doing before had Joon come in and scrambled your brain. “Wanna help?” was all you could think to say.
“I thought Joonie was supposed to be helping you,” Jiah noted, eyes darting between the two of you as she came closer, resituating herself in front of the stove to check on dinner.
“Not my forté,” he said delicately, shrugging a little for her sake.
Jimin came over, beginning to rifle through the box of cutters, picking out his favourites, and you knew you should’ve been paying attention, selecting the tree and the candy cane and the stocking. But you couldn’t stop looking at your best friend, trying to make sense of what he’d said.
This carried on throughout the next several hours – your insides in a state of unrest from needing to talk to Joon and understand what he meant. But it wasn’t a discussion for the dinner table or with everyone gathered around the Christmas tree to exchange gifts. You needed to speak to him alone, the need growing and eventually getting the better of you once everyone’s presents had been opened and you found him looking at you from across the living room, prompting you to tilt your head towards the hallway.
A moment later he was standing, wading through scraps of gift wrap and tissue paper, becoming momentarily lit up in multi-colour as he passed by the tree and headed out of the room.
Suddenly you were a lot more terrified than you’d been a second before. Him apologizing, him feeling bad – that didn’t feel any better than you apologizing, you feeling bad. Sure, maybe it made you feel a little less embarrassed. But it didn’t make the mistake disappear. And it didn’t stop your friendship from cracking apart.
You found him down the hall, leaning against the wall by the bathroom, hands in his pockets.
Catching your eye, he looked worried and once more tonight, you felt something get displaced inside of you by a look from him, one so different than anything you could remember ever seeing from him.
“Hey,” you said, reaching out for him unconsciously once you were close, taking both his hands in yours like so many times before and hoping it could provide some comfort despite the fact that his hands were warmer and softer and really the ones doing the comforting.
When he didn’t say anything, not really able to meet your eyes for longer than a second, you pulled him into the spare room, shutting the door behind the both of you.
“Joon,” you said softly, voice betraying your further confusion.
“Can I hug you?” he asked weakly, wincing at his own words.
“Of course,” you replied right away, stepping into his embrace and encircling his waist as his arms slowly came to rest around you, the weight even more welcome than anticipated. Any annoyance you had felt towards him had dissolved already.
“I feel really bad. I’m so sorry that I fucked everything up,” he whispered over your shoulder, words seemingly flowing easier now that you were tucked against him.
“You didn’t.” Cheek pressed to his shoulder, you shook your head a little, holding onto him tighter.
“I shouldn’t have done that. I fucking… took advantage of you,” he admitted, the statement dripping in shame and disgust as he began to pull away, taking a step back to run a hand through his hair.
You were baffled. “That–... that’s what you think… happened?” The words would barely come out, you were that perplexed, eyebrows so scrunched together, they were surely touching. “Joon, we kissed. There was no… advantage to be taken.”
He took another step back, eyes wider now as he looked at you, an ocean of thoughts seeming to wash over his mind.
“Why in the world do you think you took advantage of me?” It was almost laughable, his cluelessness, his innocence. Had he really not been able to tell how much you ached for him during that kiss? Had he really thought you were just… going along with it? “If anything, the only shitty part of what you did was running off after and then barely speaking to me for a week.”
His adam’s apple bobbed as he swallowed, his gaze skimming over the contents of the room though it was obvious he was taking none of it in. Finally, he said: “That was very shitty of me.”
“It was,” you breathed, still feeling like you were nowhere despite all the new information laid at your feet. “But the kiss wasn’t shitty. The kiss was–” you stopped yourself, nearly choking on your words as you began to study the ground. Incredible? Perfect? Toe-curling? Core-throbbing?
He watched you carefully now as you took a deep breath.
It was a feeling you revelled in every time. Oh, to be the one that Kim Namjoon couldn’t keep his eyes off of.
Your lips pressed together, tongue wetting them inside your mouth. Goosebumps erupted along your arms. You felt so fucking nervous. God, this man made you so nervous. He who normally made you feel so safe and serene. Now you knew what he felt like against you. How easily you melted against his mouth. And you knew that he’d made that happen.
Damn. He’d kissed you.
He’d kissed you!
How long was it going to take to get it through the thick skull of yours?
“Joon,” you said finally, the realization written all over you, face perking up as a very strange thing wiggled its way inside you and made itself at home. It was called hope. “Why did you kiss me?” You were fixated on him now, gaze darting between his eyes as he blinked at you, his turn to take a deep breath.
“It… it just happened.”
A frown as you felt yourself sink a little. Hope was a stupid thing.
“I mean, no, I–... obviously, I wanted to, I just–...” he said quickly, stepping closer. “I’m… sorry, I’m not sure what you want me to say right now.”
It was only more maddening – or saddening – hearing him just trying to appease you.
“I don’t want you to say anything, I–” Your eyes squinted, head shaking slightly. “Not for my sake.” You itched to take his hands again, even as the icy blade of uncertainty was carving through you. It felt kind of like rejection. What you’d always expected it to feel like.
“Not for y–, no, that’s not what I meant. I just… I’m really scared to do something wrong! To make you uncomfortable.”
“You don’t make me uncomfortable! You haven’t,” you said back to him, matching his slightly frazzled tone. “Not a single time.”
“Really?” He sounded relieved. It was very cute – so immensely innocent. “You’re sure?”
“Yes, dummy. I’m sure.” Joon was, in fact, not dumb in the slightest. He was the smartest person you knew. But sometimes you liked to call him it, just in the moments when he was being especially dense. Or adorable.
“Can I hug you again?”
With a soft laugh, you closed the space between the two of you, reattaching to him much the same way as you had earlier, fitting into the cavern he created for you. “Relax, ok? You didn’t do anything,” you mumbled against his shoulder, feeling the way his head tilted forward to rest on yours.
Then the rest of his body was relaxing too, tension drifting away as he pulled you closer, enveloping you in his coziness.
A few moments passed, neither of you moving to pull away. And as your brain began to whirr again, registering how wonderful he felt, how good he smelled, your nose pressed to his neck, you realized you were still in limbo. Your hands pressed to his back, gliding up over his lats, feeling the wide expanse of his back.
Of all the things you could do to test the situation, the action was a meager one. But over the past week, you’d already kind of slowly gotten used to the idea of him breaking your heart. So was it really all that scary? Hands squeezing gently, you nuzzled your face into him a little more.
He stayed, even when it should’ve been awkward, even when the hug became far longer than any hug you’d shared. And when he did lift his head, he hovered so close, letting the two of you blink at each other from just inches away.
With the wisp of a teasing smile, you found a few words, trying to tell yourself they weren’t so scary. “So, what if it...’just happened’ again?”
He breathed out, gaze falling to the side as his mouth tugged up into a bashful smirk. Then everything went quickly: him looking back at you, brows pushing up for a millisecond as your words registered, realization, his gaze dropping to your lips and back up.
You took it for what it was, pressing up to him to close the gap, his lips heating you instantly. It was a shy kiss, even with all the nerve you’d managed to channel to make the move.
No, it was him who turned it into something else entirely, hands weaving into your hair from underneath, thumb caressing along your jaw, sending a chill down your spine.
Before you knew it, you were backed against the wall, hitting it softly due to one hand of his jutting out behind you to make your landing a bit nicer. Then it was back on you, brushing over your cheek, back into your hair, holding you firmly against him as your mouths continued exploring.
Even steeped in immediacy, there was a care in every way that he touched you – not in the sense of a fear of breaking you but in a desire to coax you, tenderly draw you out of yourself.
It worked far too easily, low hums of pleasure seeping out from between your lips as you pulled him harder to you, pushing your hips forward at the same time, feeling one of his thighs press between yours. When your hips moved involuntarily, he joined you, a quiet throaty sound coming from him that made you feel like you were on top of the world.
Despite being well aware of all your closest friends just down the hall, the carelessness didn’t seem to matter to two careful people. Nothing really mattered except for him. An entire year of prudence, gone in the blink of an eye.
When you both pulled back, literally in need of oxygen, you let your head rest back against the door.
A moment later, he was kissing your neck, earning a shaky sigh from you as you sank into the feeling. “Sorry, I– sorry, we should stop,” he said even as he brushed his lips over the sensitive spot once more.
“Because they’re right there? Or for another reason?” you asked, a little breathless.
“Because of them. 1000%.”
The conviction in his voice made you laugh. Then you watched each other for a moment from dangerously close. “We should go back out.”
“We should.” He was looking at your lips again and it was making it hard to believe him.
“Joon.” It came out somewhere between a warning and a beg. You wanted nothing more than to continue but you really couldn’t; neither of you would go through with it.
“Ok, let’s go,” he said through a low chuckle as he peeled himself away from you and reached for the door handle, taking your hand in his so casually that you almost didn’t notice. “But I’m not done with you yet.”
The look he sent you was enough to make giddiness bubble inside your stomach, stopping you from moving for a moment as you froze with your eyes on his little smirk. You could see his ears turning a tinge red.
Flushing hot a bit yourself, you smiled widely at him before getting tugged along out the door and back to the party to wrap up the best Christmas ever.
A/N: god i love clueless joon. i am both quite happy with this writing and also simultaneously not happy with it but i just like can’t put my finger on what is wrong looool. i love that i asked you about smut and then didn’t include any anyways haha. i may write a smutty second part to this bc i am who i am. anyway, i hope you enjoyed isi!! happy holidays! happy new year <3 lots of love being sent to you <3
Tag List: @nabiolive, @the-boy-meets-evil, @notbotheredtho, @aris-ink, @here4btsfics
Reblogs are way more helpful than likes! Please reblog my work if you enjoyed it <3
➥ welcome to the club
hey i'm Ash and welcome to my acc
For my presentation: I'm bi and trans / use he|they pronouns and I'm 19 ! ٭ ٭ ٭ click "read more" for the rules and masterlist! [One open request slot!]
1 If you're under 16 please do not follow me. I have been engaging more and more in NSFW content and I don't want any minors reading my stuff :) and if I find out you're I'll block you (IF YOU DON'T PUT YOUR AGE I'LL IMMEDIATELY BLOCK YOU THANK YOU)
2 Do not repost my fics. I know they're not much but I just want to make it clear for everyone.
3 No transphobia, homophobia or racism is tolerated here. That also includes if you're a weirdo/pedo you'll be immediately blocked and reported.
▵ ▵ ▵ ▵
side note: I do not mind women/female aligned people on my account but keep in mind one thing. This account is mostly for the male audience and non binary/ gender not conforming people. I have decided that I'll not write for women since I'm not comfortable with it and it makes my dysphoria a big problem. Please do not ask me for it and search for someone who will do it gladly.
IMPORTANT: I've stated this before but I'm gonna remind you. Fem aligned people are welcome to my account, after all I mostly do gn reader but what I'm not that comfortable is with them liking posts DIRECTED towards cis men/ trans men. I do understand that it might be good written for you, but please, these are for them. Not for you. I know I don't have the power to tell you what to do. But I can block you. So understand that if I see someone like She/her - she/they (with also lesbian on their bio) liking my male reader posts I'm gonna be uncomfortable.
content I'm okay with writing!
⊹ NSFW, fluff, angst, crack, common/ mild kinks, character x character, reader x multiple characters, monsters, vtubers (not making it like it's real), one shots, head canons & series about character x reader
content I'll not touch!
⊹ Adult character x child reader/character (as in a romantic aspect), real people (I'll only take vtubers online persona), incest, non-con, really explicit kinks, disturbing ideas that people might ask, furries (monster fucking doesn't count I guess), pedophilia, hate speech towards minority groups
specific exceptions :
✂ dub-con but only if people are okay with it (my other account has dark content if you're interested), heavy kinks only if I'm comfortable (somnophilia for example), monsters (like fucking a tentacle monster, a werewolf, etc) and I think that's it.
some fandoms I've written for:
- Boys Headcanons
- Deku (Angst/Fluff)
- Tamaki (Appreciation Post)
- Boys (Small details)
-Izuku (With Love)
- Let me be (Izuku 1)
- Let me be (Izuku 2)
- Let me be (Izuku 3)
- Let me be (Izuku 4)
- Let me be (Izuku final)
☕︎︎ GENSHIN IMPACT:
- Zhongli (messy outcome remake) 🔞
- Tighnari (Cursed fantasy) 🔞
- Tighnari (Silhouette) 🔞
- Dainsleif (Aimed to Kill)
- Kazuha (Fluff)
- Pantalone (Teasing) 🔞
- Zhongli (Dom Reader) 🔞
- Kaeya (Heacanons) 🔞
- Diluc (Flames) 🔞
- Xiao (Angst)
- Xiao (Brat tammer) 🔞
- Albedo (Body Open) 🔞
- Albedo (Fluff)
- Albedo (Succubus) 🔞
- Thigh Riding 1 🔞
-Thigh Riding 2 🔞
-Thoma (Is that so) 🔞
☕︎︎ MYSTIC MESSENGER:
- 707 (Stargazing)
- RFA Eyes
- Wounds 1 (TW sh)
- Wounds 2 (TW sh)
- Late Confessions 1
- Late Confessions 2
☕︎︎ LUXIEM / SHXTOU:
- Ike (Killer High heels) 🔞
- Ike (4 am)
- Luxiem hot 🔞
- Vampire Luxiem 1 🔞
- Vampire Luxiem 2 🔞
- Needy Shoto 🔞
- Mysta (Brat tammer) 🔞
- Kyo (Slow your grind) 🔞
☕︎︎ REDACTED AUDIO:
- Gavin Fanart 🔅
- Gavin Fanart 2 🔅
- Redacted Headcanons 🔅
- Redacted Headcanons 2 🔅
- David Fanart 🔅
- David Fanart 2 🔅
- Redacted Art Dump 1 🔅
- Redacted Art Dump 2 🔅
others I'm interested in include ── kimetsu no yaiba / attack on titan / obey me / nu carnival / ouran high school / saiki k
ෆ Hope this clears up any questions you have! ෆ
maybe 4 with dukeceit?
Thanks for the request, this was fun to write!
Characters: Janus, Remus, Logan is mentioned
Prompt: "I'm here, aren't I?"
Word count: 997
“You took your time,” Janus commented as Remus approached him. He was leaning against a wall, looking stunning in his usual heist outfit of a black turtleneck and leggings, with a beanie over his long dark hair – but then, Janus always looked stunning.
“I’m here, aren’t I?” Remus shrugged, flashing Janus as innocent of a grin as he could. “Better late than never, right?”
Janus just hummed, pursing his lips as he looked Remus up and down. “Whatever, you’re hot so I’ll let you off this once.”
Remus felt his ears flush at the comment, although these kinds of interactions weren’t uncommon – Janus flirted with everyone, but most often with Remus. That sometimes led Remus to wonder, when he was feeling particularly wistful, whether there was more to it than simple flirting, whether Janus held any feelings for Remus like the ones Remus held for him. But that was just wishful thinking; any time he tried to bring up the topic, Janus brushed it aside instantly.
“We’ll have ten minutes to get in and out once Logan turns off the security system,” Janus said, pulling up the end of his yellow glove to reveal his watch, where he received messages from Logan during missions. His tongue poked out ever so slightly as he examined the screen – Janus always did that when he concentrated, and Remus wasn’t even sure if he knew he was doing it, but it was adorable.
The silence began to eat away at Remus – he’d never liked waiting for things – and he cleared his throat. One more attempt to start the conversation while they were alone couldn’t hurt. “Jan, I know we flirt a lot, but I was just thinking…”
“Security’s down,” Janus cut in, pulling his glove back over his watch and striding towards the bank without even a glance to check if Remus was following.
Remus hurried after him. He’d been wrong, that did hurt. Just a little. Because every time he brought it up, he was more sure Janus knew what he was going to say, and every time it was dismissed with the same callousness.
They got into the bank easily, since the doors were unlocked, and both of them sped through the corridors to the safe. Remus didn’t hesitate to take out his tools and get to work on the lock.
He glanced down at his own watch as Janus opened the door. They had seven minutes until security came back on.
The safe was filled with more money than Remus had seen in his life, but as he stood there gawking at the fortune they were about to acquire, Janus was already putting the bundles of cash into his bag.
“You want to help?” Janus asked.
Remus obliged, taking large portions of the stacks and chucking them haphazardly into the bags. He saw Janus wrinkle his nose at the messy placement, but he wouldn’t have time to make it any neater. It didn’t take long to fill the bags completely, and Remus zipped them up before he headed towards the door.
Remus looked at his watch again. Five minutes left.
Janus was still crouched zipping up his own bag.
Remus stood in front of the door, blocking Janus’ exit.
“Remus?” Janus asked hesitantly, his eyes widening. “What are you doing?”
Remus could feel Janus’ gaze trailing over him, but now it was calculating. They both knew that Remus was the strongest of the two of them, but Janus was trained in more martial arts than Remus could count. In a physical fight, there was no way of telling who would win.
But it wouldn’t come down to that. Remus just needed to ask one question. “Is any of it real? The flirting?”
Janus’ look of fear turned into one of incredulity. “What?”
Remus took a shaky breath, glancing at his watch. Three minutes. “Do you mean any of it? Do you really like me or is this just a game to you?”
“Remus, now is not the time,” Janus snapped. “We need to leave before security comes back on.”
“Just tell me and we can get out of here,” Remus pleaded, his heart starting to race at the thought that he could hold them up for too long, and they could get trapped in here.
Janus seemed to be thinking along the same lines, as he glanced desperately at the door. “Remus, this isn’t funny, I-”
“Just tell me the truth!” Remus urged.
“Yes!” Janus blurted, his voice hysterical. “Yes, I’ve had a crush on you for two years. Now can we go?”
Remus didn’t answer, stepping away from the door and racing to the exit. Janus hurried along beside him. The safe was deep in the building, but they’d both memorised the floor plan so they could escape in a high-pressure situation. And this sure was high pressure, as Remus couldn’t stop thinking that they were running out of time, running out of-
They burst through the doors and onto the steps outside, and Remus looked at his watch.
They’d made it out with only ten seconds to spare.
Janus grabbed Remus’ arm, leaning heavily on his shoulder as he caught his breath. But only for a second, because then he was dragging Remus down the steps towards the getaway car waiting for them.
As the two of them piled into the back seats with their money, Janus turned to Remus. “What you just did was really dangerous,” Janus said, his expression stern.
“I know,” Remus admitted. “I just had to know, and you wouldn’t talk to me about it. Anyway,” he gave Janus a coy smile. “Two years, huh?”
“Yeah,” Janus said with a shaky laugh. “I’m sorry for not talking to you, I just didn’t want to ruin things. You’re my best friend, and I didn’t want to mess that up.”
Remus gently took his hand, and pressed it to his lips. “Well, I don’t think this has ruined anything.”
Janus smiled. “Neither do I.”
#11 and #41 for turgre!
Thank you for sending the prompt in!
Fanfic Trope Mash Up
#11 Neighbour AU + #41 Big Damn Kiss =
Herakles & Sadık are both recent university graduates from Athens & İstanbul, but find themselves lacking opportunities to work in their homecountries. So they go abroad to try their luck elsewhere.
Both end up in Germany. Herakles' is living with the Simonides old family friends who've either migrated decades ago or are living as expats in Germany. Natasa and Ibrahim welcome Herakles with open arms. He immediately makes friends with their twins, only a few years younger than him. Omar and Timothea, as they're called, are still living with their parents while they're attending the local university. They're not living in luxury, but they're happy.
Sadık manages to get in contact with Havva Be Yauno via some university acquaintances. They migrated to Germany a while ago, after being kicked out working in local administration. Sadık gets to share a small flat in the building Havva manages for the landlord, together with a Kurdish Woman called Dilan Taş. After some initial hiccups, the two become close friends.
The hiccups with their neighbours next door are less initial. No, that's a lie - The Simonides don't mind their new neighbours, even invite them for coffee and tea. Omar pretty quickly evolves a crush on Dilan.
It's just Herakles and Sadık who keep butting heads.
They argue about petty semantics that only people who studied 'breadless art' would care about. Herakles complains that they're too loud at night. Sadık says Herakles is dragging stray cats into the house by leaving out food & now the whole staircase stinks. There's always something.
As time goes on, they get over themselves a little. Too busy with their own life. Sadık feeds the cats with scraps he gets from the Turkish butcher. Herakles comes over after it's been eerily quiet for weeks and finds out that Sadık's latest odd job makes him work at night. He actually finds him slumped over on the kitchen table when Dilan lets him in before she leaves for work. He goes back and leaves him a package of expensive coffee beans that he had imported from Greece.
One night, they end up together on the university campus. Sitting on the steps surrounding a piece of green near a small river. The city's barely still awake, there's only music, TV and chatter from the dorms. The occassional student crossing after they stayed late at the library.
"What did you actually study?" Sadık asked and put the lighter back into his pocket. It was a cheap one with a wheel. Pain in the ass to get working at this point. His last money had been spent on the cigarettes themselves.
Herakles took a deep breath through his nose. He stared at the water, flowing invisibly except for a few dancing white and orange specks. "Philosophy," he said.
Sadık chuckled and the chuckle quickly became a laugh. "Oh, what a surprise that you couldn't find a job with such a prestigious degree." He grinned and exhaled some smoke.
"And history. Archaeology, Politics, Linguistics, Architecture, Maths... I dipped my toes into physics, too, for a little bit, but couldn't really make it."
Sadık's grin had long faltered. Herakles looked to the river. A smile replaced the initial surprise on Sadık's face. "Oho, a real Renaissance man, aren't you?"
"I like to learn. But all I could do with the few fields I actually managed to acquire a degree in was teach in school. And I'm just not... very good at that." He sighed. Long. "But my dad had stopped paying once I had gotten a job, not that he had ever really paid me enough, mind you, so... I had nowhere to go if I had quit."
"Except here." Sadık wished Herakles would have looked at him. To even catch a glimpse of him, a little bit of that beautiful face illuminated by the pale moon or the orange streetlights.
"Except here." Sadık finally had his wish granted. "What did you study?"
Sadık took a deep breath through his nose. His cigarette was almost finished. "Architecture, too. Tried to get into engineering, but couldn't quite make it. Would have loved to do Literature, frankly. I dunno, get a teaching position at an university, but Anne* always had higher plans for me. Career woman and all that, only wanted the best for me, too, so studying something almost as useless as philosophy wasn't really up for debate."
Now he was the one to stare into the river while he took another drag. He looked at his feet. His shoes could need a good cleaning.
"A smoking literature professor, how cliché," Herakles said and the deep shadows on his face hid how much it reflected the amusement in his voice. He leant in closer to Sadık and put a hand on his thigh. His inner thigh. "All the women would have gone wild over this."
"You think so?" Sadık asked, an expectant but cautious smirk on his face. Rest of his cigarette between his fingers. Herakles' weight on his thigh. He enjoyed his touch. The nights were so cold here in Germany. He leant in for a kiss.
Herakles' hand disappeared. "But I don't kiss smokers." The next moment, Sadık was engulfed in darkness as Herakles stood and blocked the streetlight. He turned and adjusted his jacket. "I have a job interview tomorrow, so see you around, I guess." He turned to just the right angle that Sadık could catch his grin.
He only had a dumbfounded stare as goodbye while Herakles climbed the stairs back to street level.
Some time after this incident, Herakles gets a job as research assisstant at the local university. It's initially only for a project of the history facculty, but he's happy nonetheless.
Now that he knows Sadık enjoys literature, he tells the Simonides one time the topic crops up & they know of a regional literature club, who's holding public reading nights. Any author can show up and read their pieces for 10 Minutes to an audience. Omar tells Dilan, who knows that Sadık writes poetry. She thinks he should go and so after she bullied him into it, they do.
Sadık becomes a regular guest there and ends up meeting other literature enthusiasts, like the Beilschmidts. (He and Gilbert bicker a lot about what the other writes, both trying to take the other down a peg). Sadık never tells Herakles any of this.
So imagine his surprise when he spots him one night in the audience. Afterwards, he's torn between sneaking out and going straight up to him, but Herakles makes the decision for him.
"I didn't know you wrote poetry," Herakles finally broke the awkward stare-off.
"Well, now you do." Sadık closed his book and shoved it under his arm. With a grin, he asked: "You think it's good?"
Despite what followed, Herakles couldn't wipe the smile off his face: "I enjoyed it more than the other guy's crime story, at least."
Sadık gave a short bark of laughter. "Oh, you don't know half of it, Gilbert's been trying to make it work since forever. You got time for a coffee?"
So life's good. They're hanging out, they're working, they're pursueing their passions. One time, the heater in Sadık and Dilan's flat breaks and despite Havva trying their best to get it repaired and them a temporary replacement, they're freezing their asses off. So they go and visit their neighbours, who offer them to sleep over. Sadık is supposed to sleep on the couch. Dilan is supposed to sleep on a mattress in the Simonides' room. Both somehow end up sleeping in a Greek's bed instead. (Herakles has a really small room - his desk is even in the twins' room cuz it wouldn't fit in his own. Sadık asks if he wants coffee and they end up drinking coffee in his bed together and talk until they fall asleep.)
Life could be rosy. That is until one day, the Simonides get into real trouble with the landlord. You see, Natasa and Havva always had a tense relationship, because Natasa doesn't believe in playing by the rules too much, while Havva is a very organized person. However, now some things - like mayhaps Herakles living with them - have gotten directly to the landlord of the building and they're not amused. They threaten to evict them, unless Herakles is going - and want a hefty fine from the Simonides either way.
Getting a new home would mean severe financial strain, not to mention the fine. Omar and Thea may would have to pause or drop their studies. Herakles would have to go back to Greece and start from scratch.
Which he's willing to do, seeing how much trouble he caused the family, even if it breaks his heart. Natasa is having none of it - "I'm not sending you back to your son of a bitch, deadbeat dad, Iraklis" - and insists he stays.
Dilan and Sadık get wind of all of this and they're just as devasted as the family itself. They don't want to lose their neighbours. They don't want this to ruin Omar's and Thea's future. They don't want Herakles to leave. Sadık doesn't want Herakles to leave.
So he pleads with Havva to do something, anything, he'll help them do whatever it takes. Natasa is far too proud to do so. Maybe she even suspects that Havva had something to do with it. (They don't).
And through a lot of negotiation, bribery and running errands, the Simonides get to stay. Omar and Thea can continue pursueing their degrees in peace. Herakles gets to stay and keep working in Germany.
"You... You've spent your past weeks on this?" Herakles' stare pierced Sadık as much as it seemed to look right through him. His mouth hung open, jaw slack. "This was all your doing?"
Sadık took a deep breath, but had to settle for a rather unintelligent "Well, yeah." Herakles' stare unsettled him. He had never seen him at a loss for words before. He was even afraid the other might faint.
A heartbeat later, Sadık was afraid he might faint. Herakles had taken a step towards him, grabbed his face and pressed his lips onto Sadık's. It knocked the breath out of him.
His lips were soft. They were so soft and hot and melded with his own effortlessly.
He kissed back, hands on Herakles' face, fingers buried in the messy hairy. The pressure between them was right, felt right, made them one for a brief eternity.
It ended as abruptly as it had begun. They both took a deep breath through their nose and Herakles panted loudly as he exhaled through the mouthm He swallowed.
"Herakles, I don't think that that's an appropriate enough Thank you", Ibrahim said, but neither of the two barely even registered it. Natasa laughed. Loudly.
"Oh, no, I think it's more than enough," Sadık replied as he stared at the wall next to Herakles' head. His hands were still on his face. "Although..." Ibrahim and Natasa were talking in Greek when he faced Herakles again. She still chuckled while a grin stole itself onto his face. "I think I could go for a little bit more gratitude, after all we've done."
"Don't push it," Herakles warned him. Yet, his cockyness was rewarded with another kiss.
Sadık's tongue slipped between his lips effortlessly. As if it belonged there.
Like Herakles belonged here.
So... yeah! I hope you liked it!
Joni Mitchell: A whole world in one mind
"Joni Mitchell took this potent popular image that has been building for 7 or 8 years anyway, the 'California girl', the 'beach boy's girl', the beautiful golden girl with the long hair parted in the middle. And Joni not only was the girl, but she was also the Bob Dylan, the Paul Simon, the Lennon-McCartney writing it. You know, she was the whole package; she was the subject and she was the painter." - Bill Flanagan
When you listen to Joni Mitchell's music, what do you think of? and what do you feel? Maybe you'd say you feel like you want to fly with the clouds, feel the wind hug you warmly or coldly, make you want to dive into the deepest meanings of life. It's unexplainable. But one thing that her listeners would probably say is - it's real and authentic. No one does it like Joni Mitchell.
As young as 9 years old, Joni contracted polio and it was in the hospital where she began singing to an audience of patients. Joni had always been an artist, she said in one of her interviews, she loved painting and music was her hobby.
She trained herself to play guitar, studied in an art college and performed at local folk clubs and coffehouses until suddenly, she became one of the most anticipated music artists on the big stages during late 1960s and '70s.
She was even described as the "Yang to Bob Dylan's Yin, equalling him in richness and profusion of imagery." Indeed, her music paints a world in your mind, rides you in a sea of feeling, it opens your perspectives about different aspects in a new way. And she does it all so with honesty.
In the mid' 1960s, she moved to the United States and by 1968, she recorded her first album "Joni Mitchell" produced by David Crosby. It was the beginning of her success, more albums followed which gained her numerous accolades. Her sophomore album Clouds released in 1969 being the first one to win her a Grammy Award (best folk performance), her next album, Ladies of the Canyons became her first gold album and was a mainstream success including her hit singles "Big yellow taxi" and "The Circle game." It was also during this time when she experimented more on the genres of pop and rock. Some of her other most soulful and famous successful recordings include Blue (1971) being her first-million selling album, The Hissing of Summer lawns (1975) which conveyed more of Joni's societal views based on her social observation, Hejira (1976), and Turbulent indigo (1994).
By 1974, Joni showcased her jazz skills in her album Court and sparks which was her best-selling album that garnered another Grammy award as Best instrumental arrangement accompanying vocalist(s) and was highly praised by critics.
Her expressive songs continue to inspire, motivate, influence and amaze even the younger generation of today. Differently styled covers of her songs by other musicians had also gained much recognition. Although she isn’t as popular as she was during her prime, Joni Mitchell's music continues to give light for those in the darkness, speak for the voiceless and comfort people in their time of loneliness.
"When forests rise to block the light that keeps a traveler sane, I'll challenge them with flashes from a brighter time"
From a verse of her song "I think I understand." Joni speaks of her courage of facing her fears, finally stepping out of the comfort zone and becoming a stronger person. Problems, challenges, struggles, they may all block her way again but she will fight it much braver than she did in her yesterday's battles. Dark experiences made colorful, beautiful as a musical masterpiece, it fires up a person's will to live no matter how hard life gets.
"And I play if you have the money or if you're a friend to me, but the one man band by the quick lunch stand, he was playing real good for free."
From her song "For free." It reminds us of how we should keep our passion alive and well, reminds us of the reasons on why we pursue it - it is to be happy. We don't become artists or do what we are passionate about for the sake of turning heads our way, we pursue our passion for the reason that it is what our hearts desire. In this song, Joni expressed how the passing years had changed her, she's still passionate but her experiences has grown her tired, and her passion wasn't as fiery as it was in her earlier days. It made her look back on the beginnings of her career. It is an inspiring piece of music that nudges us from the chaos of our mind and of our surroundings, reminding us of the goals we have set to achieve.
"I've looked at life from both sides now from win and lose and still somehow, it's life's illusions I recall. I really don't know life at all."
From the last chorus of her song "Both sides now." Life is messy, so many paths to take on, bigger and much bigger problems to overcome and other aspects of it. It can get too complicated and you may even lose yourself in it. It is truly incredible how Joni Mitchell sings not only to express her mind, but also to move the hearts of her listeners. Like this song of hers, Both sides now, deeply relatable and vulnerable. Such moments prove the creativeness and greatness of a music artist; when one feels the singing of a musician’s heart and understand their message through each changing melodies, the song becomes a live soulful person or even a whole world in one mind.
An Artful Revenge pt. 6 (Feysand)
Part of the Damnation series.
Masterlist | Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5
This is the last part of this fic! Gonna work on some asks next, then start the Nessian story (see the link above for details)
Men, in general, are beyond stupid.
I honestly don’t even know how the male population is still around.
I mean sure, they have their moments. Fire? Pretty cool.
Maybe I should amend my statement: Men are stupid when it comes to women.
Because if Tamlin had any common sense, he would wonder why I drag myself into his office downtown, the day after I found out who he really is.
He’d wonder how I even found his posh little office, since he sure as hell never told me about it. (Answer: Rhysand).
He’d wonder why I’m crying and having an emotional breakdown, but am still dressed in a lowcut dress with my hair done. (Answer: men are even stupider when it comes to a woman with exposed breasts).
But he doesn’t.
He sees me stumbling toward him, a mess of tears and fluffy hair, and jumps to his feet, coming to my rescue.
His arms wrap around me miraculously at the same time my legs give out, and I fall into him dramatically.
That was a little much, but what can I say? I was a theatre kid.
“Feyre,” he says calmly, stroking my hair like he didn’t insult me twenty-four hours ago. In fact, he’s acting like we didn’t even break up. “What’s wrong?”
I press my face in his shoulder, trying not to think about how wrong this feels, how wrong he smells.
Rhysand smells like citrus and the sea and something so manly it makes my knees go weak for real. Tamlin smells like dirt and bad decisions.
“You were right.” It’s something all men love to hear a woman say, even though it’s hardly ever true. “You were so right, Tamlin.”
He pulls back and runs a thumb over my cheek, swiping a tear away.
His green eyes question mine, so calm and understanding compared to yesterday’s rage. His hands are gentle as they cradle my face, and I want them off off off.
“He’s a monster,” I wail, dredging up some more tears. Knowing there needs to be more of a concrete reason for my breakdown, I make some pretty seedy shit up. “He... killed his driver! Because he took a wrong turn!”
Gods, Feyre. Really?
I can practically see Rhysand rolling his eyes. He’d see through my lies in a second.
Tamlin, however, bites the bait... more like he swallows the whole damn line.
He hugs me again, so tight my feet leave the floor, and I go limp against him, pressing all the soft parts of me against the hardness of his chest.
Don’t get me wrong, Tamlin’s attractive. Wide shoulders, surfer boy hair, tan skin, and green eyes that look like the deepest of emerald.
But he also is a fucking asshole, and everything about him irritates me.
It’s crazy, I think as his hands slip lower on my back, that yesterday he called me a whore, and now he wants to sleep with me.
“Tamlin,” I sigh against his neck.
“It’s okay, baby. I’ve got you.”
I almost throw up at the little pet name, but I nod and act like he’s the greatest thing on this planet, the gods’ personal gift to all things women.
But then he kisses me, and I get tired of this little charade.
I keep my eyes open as his warm lips meet mine, wanting to see his face as the needle sinks into his skin.
His eyes fly open, and he drops me to my feet roughly, a hand pressed against his neck. It’s too late, of course.
Whatever black market shit this is, it works fast.
His legs give out, and I shove his shoulder so he lands in one of the leather chairs in front of his desk.
“Feyre,” he growls, no longer happy to see me, “What the fuck are you doing?”
I roll my eyes, because even the dumbest of men should be able to figure that out my now.
You’d think he’d pass out or be too paralyzed to talk, but just like Rhysand promised me, the drugs have paralyzed him from the neck down but left him perfectly conscious.
I want him to see exactly what I’m doing.
Straightening my dress, I saunter over to his desk, eyes scanning the messy papers and folders for what I want.
Three rings, the exact copy of Rhysand’s, sit in a glass box, the shining titanium making them look like treasure. And they are.
But they’ve been here fucking long enough.
I try to open the box, but it’s locked, so I sigh and grab a paperweight, then smash it to bits.
“You do this, Feyre, and I’ll come after you.”
“Ooooh, scary,” I deadpan, completely writing him off in a way I know drives him crazy.
Glass flies everywhere, but I just grab the rings and put them on whatever fingers they’ll fit on.
Yet another piece of evidence men are idiots: I was wearing Rhysand’s ring when I walked in here.
A small detail, sure, but when I took that ring from him yesterday in his car, I made a vow to never take it off.
It’s a little big, resting on my thumb, but it’s perfect.
It means I’m his, and he’s mine.
“He might have Chicago, but I’ll make you’re life miserable!”
“You did that for two years,” I remind him with a smile.
Then I set the radio exactly like I’d been told to, turn back to Tamlin, punch him square in the jaw, and smile when I hear a crunch.
That wasn’t exactly part of the plan, but I was tired of his threats.
He howls in pain, and I know it makes me meaner than an adder, but I blow him a kiss and laugh as I walk out of his office.
A sleek black sedan, driven by the very much alive Rolando (I’ve officially stopped thinking of him as Beefcakes), waits for me at the curb. I swing the door open and climb in, turning to Rhysand with a grin.
I hold up my hands victory.
Rhysand smiles and laughs, relief and love and awe written across his beautiful features.
He’s so fucking handsome, I can’t hold out anymore.
Muttering an apology to Rolando for what he’s about to witness, I sling myself across the leather seat and pretty much attack Rhysand.
It might be the fact that I just drugged someone with illegal substances--my very first crime!--or maybe just how he looks when he’s happy. I don’t really care.
My hands are on his jaw, running down his chest, tangling in his hair.
He lets out a surprised laugh as I paw at him, and I use the opportunity to sweep my tongue into his mouth, holding back a moan at the taste of him.
The car stops, but I sure as hell don’t.
Until Rhysand takes me shoulders in his hands, and gently pulls away. “Adrenaline junkie,” he accuses with a smile, pressing one last kiss to my cheek.
I nod, because it’s probably true.
He gives me an amused look. “Then I can’t wait for what happens in twenty minutes.”
I stick my tongue out at him, ever the mature adult, and he smiles. Then he takes my hands, examines the rings, and takes the two that fit the worst.
He slips them on, and even though it’s a casual gesture, I almost break out into tears.
Too manly to cry like a baby, Rhysand just opens the door and walks out, taking my hand and pulling me with him.
Even though he looks calm and cool as a cucumber, I know he’s not exactly thrilled I’m here. We had our first real argument about me coming along for this part of the plan I’ve secretly begun to call Toppling Tamlin the Tool.
I won, obviously.
He warned me time and time again about what I was going to witness today, but I don’t care. His revenge is his to take, but I want to be here for him.
He’s been fighting for so long, completely alone.
And no matter how it started, I fell for him. He isn’t alone anymore, and won’t be ever again, no matter how dangerous the situation is.
Hand in hand, we stroll into Leperchaun’s Luck, the last remaining Irish stronghold in Chicago.
When I asked why he’d let it remain all this time, Rhysand smiled that cruel smile and said, “Revenge is only worth it if it’s slow and painful.”
I’d shuddered, half in horror and half in excitement.
I know it’s horrible and beyond absurd, but what he does for a living doesn’t scare me. He explained the gory details last night, and I listened. And even though I was scared, it wasn’t of him.
It was for him.
He has enemies with rap sheets longer than my arm.
The guy Rhysand blocks from buying Degas? Russian arms dealer!
But Chicago, he’d told me with a smile, is his. Someone would have to be suicidal to come after him here. So I guess I’ll just blow up his plane and never let him leave.
I’d like to think it was my smile and charm that made him give in and let me tag along, but it was likely the fact that we aren’t in any super big dangerous.
We walk through the empty bar and to the courtyard in the back, and it’s a little amusing how quickly the six men sitting around a poker table jump to their feet and start shouting questions.
“What the fuck?” is the most popular.
“Hello, gentlemen,” Rhysand greets smoothly, ever the gentleman.
Someone behind us loads a gun, the sound making my eyes go wide.
But it’s never fired.
Because all of a sudden, red dots are on every single chest besides mine and Rhysand’s.
“Pull that trigger, McCallen, and all your friends die.”
They all look down and around at each other with huge, saucer-sized eyes.
Not one to dally, Rhysand smiles and tells the group, “I just bought this establishment. Needless to say, you’re no longer welcome. In here, or Chicago. You have six hours to leave my city.”
‘Bought’ is a bit of a strong word. He hacked into Tamlin’s bank account and bankrupted him, forcing him to sell to the highest bidder. Guess who that was.
“Or what?” one asks, feeling brave.
Another dot makes its way to his chest.
Gods, how many snipers does Rhysand have?
“Or you’ll die, and your precious little daughter Lena will be an orphan.”
The man’s jaw sets, even as his face pales.
Checking his watch with a casual gesture, Rhysand reminds, “Six hours and counting.”
Then he says, directly at the small box in the middle of the poker table, “That goes for you too, Tamlin.”
Since he didn’t want to risk coming back to Chicago, much less his last property here, Tamlin had been keeping control of his men by listening to everything that happened in this place on a private radio frequency.
Which, somehow, Rhysand knew.
He’d told me the number, and I’d turned the radio in Tamlin’s office to it before leaving. The drugs haven’t left his system and won’t until later today, meaning he’s still lying limp in that chair, listening to every word.
“Leave before I lose my patience,” Rhysand growls, and the men take the warning and haul ass out of the building.
Turning to me, he smiles and asks, “Ready, Feyre darling?”
We walk out of the restaurant again, pep definitely in our steps, then get back in the car. Rolando starts driving immediately, leaving the restaurant behind us.
“Do you want to-”
“Yes,” I answer immediately, grabbing the phone from him and hitting call.
"So violent,” he murmurs with a smirk, turning in his seat to watch as the explosives he’d placed there years ago during a mandatory “city inspection” finally came into use.
The explanation I got on that one: “In case I got bored.”
Gods, he’s sexy.
The car rocks slightly as orange and blue and yellow flames race out of the building, leaving absolutely nothing behind.
Even though the violent woman in me wants to keep watching, I look at Rhysand instead.
His eyes find mine, and he smiles softly. “It’s done. It’s over.”
I nod and press a soft kiss to the corner of his mouth, linking our hands together. We both stare down at the rings. “It’s over.”
Tamlin will run back to wherever he’s been the past seven months, and since there’s absolutely nothing for him here, he won’t come back.
Rhysand has complete control of the city again, his empire built brick by brick through hard work and rage. He’s gotten his revenge, taken everything from the man who left him with nothing.
And he got me.
“Was that enough adrenaline for you, Feyre?” he asks, hitting a button to roll up the barrier between us and Rolando.
Someone else, it seems, is an adrenaline junkie.
Smiling, I slide down on the soft leather and lift an eyebrow. “Come find out.”
~Feyre, three months later~
Somehow, I feel nauseous, excited, and doomed all at once.
I don’t even know how that’s possible, but it’s true.
I’m so nervous, I might be sick. I’m so excited, I can hardly walk. I’m so unsure of myself, I might fail.
Focusing on the one in the middle, I walk down the aisle between chairs, ignoring the people watching me and focusing on the destination.
I can feel his eyes on me, and just like the first day we met, I can hardly breathe. But I ignore the tingly feeling in my spine and focus on what I’m doing.
I walk up to the slightly lifted stage in the large auditorium and turn to my peers, smiling and feigning confidence.
I’m presenting my senior project today. And even though I’m excited and nervous and doomed, I’m proud of it.
It turned out better than I expected, honestly.
It took me forever to finish the painting aspect because I wasn’t quite satisfied until late last night.
The paint’s interrupted and surrounded by photos I’ve collected this year.
Rhysand, covered in paint. Art from both Chicago’s museum and the private collection I visit almost every day. Random bits of architecture and the night sky and shots that just work.
Up close, it’s a bit of a mess, but from a distance--particularly, the distance between me and Rhysand’s chair--it looks like three dancers, twirling and leaping under the night sky.
My professor hugged me when she saw it. So did Rhysand.
No offense to Prof. Jones, but I enjoyed his a little more.
“This is called Starlight Dancers,” I tell the room, my voice surprisingly level. I’m glad for the bright lights, because I can’t see anyone’s actual face as I continue. “It’s a rendition of Degas’s work, Dancers in Blue, which is my favorite piece. I’ve also incorporated photographs of art and people who mean a lot to me. Like a lot of pieces from the Renaissance, it’s meant to be viewed at a distance.”
I keep talking, going through the difference elements and explaining how, essentially, it’s a celebration of painting and love.
More than once, my eyes are drawn to the photographs of Rhysand, and I find myself searching for him in the crowd.
I also get a little distracted by the mass of sparkles adorning my ring finger.
We’ve been engaged for three days, eight hours, and a handful of minutes.
He proposed in the museum, right where we met. When I almost feinted at the site of the biggest diamond I’d ever seen and told him it was too much, he’d just laughed and said, “It was this or the painting behind you.”
Ridiculous, wonderful man.
I know it’s fast to get married after less than five months together, but the scary truth is that I can’t imagine life without him.
I scan the crowd again, and it might be my imagination, but I think I see a pair of violet eyes watching me.
And I could swear one winks at me.
I’m not supposed to be in here.
I’m not a professor, and I’m sure as shit not a student.
But I snuck in anyway, ignoring the millions of things I actually need to be doing, because I want to support her.
I don’t even know what she’s talking about--impressionism and romantic elements and different types of photography--but she’s so passionate and beautiful, I can’t take my eyes off her.
She has me completely wrapped around her finger, and it should probably scare me that I don’t even care.
Years and years of planning, and everything that’s happened in the past month still surprised me.
Not the part about running every last Irish bastard out of my city; that’d been set in stone.
The part about me getting engaged.
Ironically, that’s the only part that makes me smile.
Sure, I sent Tamlin running for the hills with his ragged band of leprechauns, set his stronghold on fire, and finally have peace over what happened all those years ago.
But even that pales in comparison to waking up next to the woman up on the stage.
She’s a bed hog and always puts her freezing feet on me as soon as I crawl next to her, but the way she smiles at me when she wakes up makes up for it.
Everything about her makes up for it, actually.
She’s still absolutely crazy and wonderful and I now have paint splatters on more than a few of my suits, but being loved by her is like... standing in the sun after being locked in a cave. Or some other shitty metaphor.
The fucking point is, even though getting down on one knee in a museum and asking her to share her life with me is the last thing I expected to happen, I’m glad it did.
Because being with her gives me something I’d thought I’d lost ten years ago: happiness.
Thank you for reading!
TAGS: @elorcan-trash @januarystears @emikadreams @alpha-omegas @joyceortiz13 @sapphic-beauty @meowsekai @ahappyhistorianreader @courtofjurdan @acalypsot @acourtofsjmtrash @highladyofthesith @bookwormq702 @swankii-art-teacher @lunaroseperdomo @leaf-love-life @mari-highladyof-feels @raghad-50725 @perseusannabeth @cursebreaker29 @a-bit-of-a-cactus @elriel4life @girl-who-reads-the-books @shinya-hiiragi @aelinfeyreeleven945tbln @ireallyshouldsleeprn @highqueenofelfhame @nahthanks @ghostlyrose2 @lovemollywho @tillyrubes10 @claralady @tswaney17 @rowanisahunk @superspiritfestival @thegoddessofyou @awesomelena555 @booksofthemoon @greerlunna @jlinez @studyliketate @over300books @justgiu12 @maastrash @aesthetics-11 @bamchickawowow @b00kworm @sleeping-and-books @musicmaam @hizqueen4life @maybekindasortaace
Peter Parker x gender neutral reader with powers
Powers inspired by Fetch from Infamous Second Son
(I made this moodboard earlier on in the week to keep inspiration, since I didn’t have the time to write this then. This basically describes the reader)
Part 2 here
Word Count: 2512
Everyone knew (y/n) as the star of the track team, but to certain others he was a little more than that.
To the people in your classes, you were the quiet kid, the one that the teacher always seemed to forget to call. Yet they couldn’t seem to be that angry at your luck, maybe it was your charm, or maybe it was that sweet smile of yours.
To the quiet, shyer students, you were the nice popular kid, the one that would pull bullies away from others whenever you saw a situation arise. Ironically, the bullies were usually other popular kids.
To the popular kids, you were the one that they all liked, despite not talking much. You could say one sentence in an entire conversation and it would make them grow fonder of you.
To the kids in your art class, you were the one that always had a tip for their artwork, a tip that never failed to help. You were the artistic kid who got praise from everyone and would not hesitate to praise back.
To your best friends, you were crazy, in the good way. You had a risk to try every day and a gorgeous hide-away spot hidden in plain sight. But you had the tendency to disappear without a trace, though you were always back by a day or two. As for where you went, it was a mystery. They asked, but you never gave a direct answer.
To Peter Parker, you were someone that gave him subtle hints. Hints to what, he didn’t know, but you always winked when you saw him and didn’t have the time to speak, which was rare. You usually approached him, gave him a suave greeting, and sometimes a small pick up line. Ned told him they were pick up lines, but he didn’t actually believe that they were. The constant of the confusing equation that you were, though, was your smile. It was genuine. Not pitiful, not forced, not mocking, but truly, truly genuine.
It felt nice for someone, someone who wasn’t all that close to him, to smile at him in that way. He was used to the pitiful stares from people who knew what happened to his family, the forced ones he got from people trying to act nice, the mocking ones he got from Flash and his friends when they taunted him.
But to Spider-Man, you were an enigma. He’d usually find you spray painting the side of a building. Of course, he didn’t know it was you. Your ‘disguise’, he called it a disguise but it clearly wasn’t one, was a painting mask, one that blocked toxic paint fumes, and a beanie. Really, it was that simple.
You couldn’t blame him, though, anytime you had the small gut feeling he, or for that matter any other law-abiding citizen, was nearby, you’d bolt.
Your powers came in handy for that.
Speaking of which, he wanted to know where those powers came from, if they were tech or superpowers, if you ever had to replenish, if they consumed something like energy, if you could do something other than run faster and let the trails linger, and several other questions.
Everything you did with them left a neon red glow or trail, sometimes you even used them for your artwork.
Anyway, what even was the crime you did for Spider-Man to come after you?
Vandalism, straight up graffiti. That was certainly a friendly neighborhood Spider-Man kinda job, huh? Helping grandmas cross the street, old hispanic ladies get directions, stopping people from loitering where they shouldn’t be… non-Avengers level stuff.
Your graffiti was mostly political/social movement stuff, but sometimes it was a way for you to express yourself.
Nobody knew about your powers, hell, you didn’t even know where they came from. That was why you never told anybody, but man was it a hard secret to hold. Your reason was that they’d push you to become a superhero, like Spider-Man. That, however, wasn’t the biggest of your fears, nor the biggest reason.
You were scared. What would they think of you?
What would they think of the real you? The ‘you’ you wanted to show them.
You sighed, looking at the artwork on the wall. You’d worked as the ideas came to your head, even with how messy it was, it looked good. You felt like it represented you.
Even with how good it felt to paint your feelings out, your recent thoughts about how your friends, or really anybody at all, would react had altered your mood.
“How does Spider-Man do it?” You muttered to yourself. How did he keep a different identity, from superhero to teenager? At least you thought he was a teenager. Every time you ran from him he’d scream for you to “come back” or “slow down”, and he’d always sounded like a teenager.
“How do I do what?” Before you could run just like the other times, he webbed your wrist to the wall, too late to realize it was fresh paint and you had your watch on.
You shrunk back, side-eyeing the artwork and struggling against your restraint, forgetting in a state of panic that you could easily break it with your powers.
Spider-Man could see the panic in your eyes, and he was quick to calm you down.
“Struggling won’t--” No, Peter, that’s not how you reassure someone. “I’m not going to hurt you.” He was relieved to see panic to falter that teeny little bit.
“I just want to make a deal.” It struck him a few seconds later how wrong that sounded. “N-Not a drug deal, or anything.”
The panic subsided, though the uneasy feeling didn’t. You were amused at his mixup, thought you didn’t show it.
“You stop spray painting areas where you’re not allowed, and I let you go with a warning.”
You raise an eyebrow, pulling down your mask slightly so that he could hear you properly. Peter couldn’t help but think you looked a little attractive that way.
“You’ve seen the activism stuff I’ve done.” He has, and he was all for it, but it was still vandalism. “The world needs to listen, and if they can’t, they have to see.” You stuffed your hands into your pockets. You would’ve assumed that Spider-Man would be all up for it, but it seemed like he wasn’t.
“Trust me, I agree with it, it’s just that it’s illegal.” He crossed his arms as if to intimidate you but it had no effect on you.
You huff, furrowing your eyebrows. “You know that’s bull, Spider-Man.”
“Look, I love your artwork, but you have no permits.” He insisted, which was making you grow more and more agitated.
“You don’t have to be lawful good.” Peter raised his eyebrows at the DND terms, but you couldn’t see that. “These are statements for the world. And they’re—“
Spider-Man gestured towards the graffiti behind you, which was clearly not a statement.
“Alright, you got me there.“ You roll your eyes, “I can stop these, but I will not stop the important ones. I put them in those places because I need the people to see.”
Spider-Man was conflicted. On one hand, you were morally correct. On the other lawful hand, the spray painting was still illegal. He didn’t know how he should act on this.
Once again, he could clearly see you growing frustrated.
He steps forward to put a hand on your shoulder, but as his hand lands on it, your powers let out a neon red shock.
It doesn’t affect you, but it clearly affects him… and the web on your wrist.
He collapses face-first on the ground of the alleyway.
“Shit,” You kneel down next to him. “Of all the times for these stupid powers to backfire, it’s now?”
You stand up, debating on whether or not you should flee from the scene, leaving the red clad superhero on the ground.
Your moral compass was pointing to no. You couldn’t just leave him here alone, he seemed hurt.
You’d never done something like that on accident, not to this degree. Anything else remotely similar had been used as self defense, to some mugger or two, and all it did was stun them for a sec so that you could run away.
You turn him over to check on him.
He appeared to be fine physically, but then again if he’d only fainted he’d be up and running by now.
You sigh, stretching and getting ready to pick him up because he didn’t exactly look like a light-weight. Now, where was the nearest hideout?
Peter woke up in a sleeping bag. The first thought in his head wasn’t where he was, rather, why was his mask on?
He moved to take it off but then remembered what happened last night.
Then he asked himself, where am I?
He strained to sit up. It felt like he’d been hit by a truck several times.
He first looked down because his head throbbed with a splitting headache. When he found himself stable enough, he looked at his surroundings.
The first thing he’d noted to himself was that this was definitely not his bedroom, nor was it a place he recognized.
The second thing was, the place was dirty as all hell, it looked to be an abandoned warehouse. The only furniture seemed to be placed there by squatters, which was technically what you were, since this was your hideout.
You walked carrying a dunkin donuts bag. “You’re up?”
Without the beanie and the mask, he could finally see who you were. “(y/n)?” He whispered under his breath, hoping you wouldn’t catch that. You were the person who gave him hints, and also the star of the track team. No wonder you were able to run away from him that fast, even with your powers. He felt stupid, it was so obvious who you were.
“Yeah, that’s me.” You snicker, sitting next to him. You take note of the way he sways as he sits as if he were dazed, which he most likely was. “I’m going to assume you know me. As much as I’d like to guess who you were, I think that’d be a bit rude.”
Despite how dizzy he felt, Peter couldn’t help but notice you acted as if whatever happened in that alleyway didn’t happen.
You were being nice to him, even when he started that argument.
“I brought food, even if you won’t eat it in front of me.” You hand him a sandwich and a cup of water. Peter nods, taking the drinks but keeping them next to him. “I checked you for any serious injuries, had to pull back your suit.”
You notice the way he leans back from you, you take it as a sign of worry.
“Don’t worry, there was nothing serious. I didn’t check under your mask either, if you’re worried about that too.” You thought he would’ve assumed you didn’t from your previous comment about his identity, but panic can make you forget things, you guess. “Just bruises, and I think I gave you a concussion. They’re probably from that red burst... sorry about that by the way.”
“Probably?” He asked.
You hummed a yes, rubbing the back of your neck. “I don’t actually know much about these powers.” You played with the neon light of the glow stick you always carried around with you, in case you ever needed a recharge. You ‘pulled’ the light from the stick, admiring it. Spider-Man seemed to admire it too, though probably in an investigative manner.
After a while of molding it into different forms, you put it back on the stick. Peter took that as a sign to speak up.
“You don’t mind me knowing your identity?”
You stare up at him with a cheeky smile. Peter thought you looked beautiful under the red glow of the glowstick. “I wasn’t trying to hide it.”
Peter flushes a bright red, thankful for his mask. He nods slowly, pretending he was processing the information.
“I should.. leave.” He stands up, a little too fast for his dizziness. As a consequence, he nearly falls back down, if it weren’t for your fast reflexes.
“I think you should stay a while.” Your smile was wonderful. “Wait ‘till you feel fine.”
Peter looked out the small windows of the warehouse, it was still dark out. That was a relief, since that day, or maybe tomorrow who knows, was a school day. “Okay.” He mutters adorably. He plops back down on the sleeping bag.
You sit next to him again, taking a bite of your own sandwich. “I don’t imagine you’re actually hungry.” He nods back at you.
“You should take these back.” He makes an effort to shove the items back in your bag, but you stop him before he can.
“No, you should keep them.” He can tell you seem worried.
“Y’know, I think my concussion is--” He tries to stand up, yet you pull him back down.
You gave him an all-knowing look, “It’s not. You’re still swaying.”
You see the spider eyes narrow at you, and you can’t help but think he’s adorable. It’s almost like Peter trying to figure out if you’re flirting with him or not. “You’re nice.”
“I caused your concussion.” You reply.
Right, you were the one that pulled Flash away from him. He’d heard the stories from the other kids, too. Man, you seemed absolutely perfect.
The rest of his time with you he insists on making small talk, even if you tell him not talking might help him rest up more. You weren’t exactly sure if it would, and he wasn’t either, which was one of the reasons he insisted.
Thankfully, it didn’t take long for him to stop swaying. He had a small headache, which would most likely last for the rest of the day, but the dizziness had left him.
His main priority was to get out of there, not only to get home, but also because you were making him flustered. You liked teasing Spider-Man, despite not indulging in blush because of the mask. You could tell by the way he looked down or how he fiddled with his fingers.
“I think I’m good now.” You made him stand up to make sure he was telling the truth.
He passed that simple test so you showed him towards the exit.
You checked your phone, “12 am.”
He nods, sandwich bag webbed up to the drink for easier carriage. “Uh..” You hadn’t expected Spider-Man to be this awkward. “Thanks..?”
“Yeah,” You smile. “No problem.”
He turns to head out but you stop him with a hand on his shoulder. He nearly jumps back when you press a chaste kiss on his cheek.
“See ya around?” Your smile turned cheeky.
“Y-Yeah!” He exclaims out nervously. A second later, he’s right out the door. Even if he has a mask on, he’s not risking embarrassing himself in front of you.
“God, why do I have to be so awkward?”
STUPID CUPID | 01
↳ series m.list | 00 | 01 | ongoing
→ pairing: jimin x reader
→ word count: 3,309
Prologue Summary; You and Jimin have been neighbors since you were four years old and hated each other ever since. It isn't until the two of you head off to college that fate, or rather, a certain baby with wings, decides its time to teach the two of you a lesson.
→ warnings/genre: bodyswap au, enemies to lovers, slight smut, eventual smut, slow burn
It's not always in the dead of the night, or the middle of a downpour, that the people we love decide to leave us.
A splash of yellow paints across the canvas of a blue sky, wings fluttering against a cool breeze. Curious little things - butterflies that is - the way they flutter about and land on anything colored brightly, your windowsill for example.
The people we love often leave during ordinary days, just like this one.
Holding your breath you inch the tip of your index finger towards it. Of course, you know butterflies aren't meant to be touched. Though, what four year old is going to pass up something as pretty as this? As you itch closer it startles, but not from you. An abrupt slam of a door shakes your walls and you turn a cheek to the retreating insect. You stare at your bedroom door. Pushing yourself off the windowsill, you make your way over, feet brushing against the carpet floor, and out the door.
"How could you!" Another slam ricochets through the house and you flinch back, nearly retreating to your room, "How dare you!"
After that moment in life, you were no longer the type of person to let serendipity rule you - so, it's only natural that you ignore it when it falls into your lap - turn and walk away as if it'd never been there, to begin with.
A week before the Switch
It hadn't been long since the sun peeked out from the horizon, but the warm body next to you is what stirs you awake, limbs stretching and contorting. Going against your better judgment you let a heavy lid peek open, only to snap it shut again.
"I saw that." An arm snakes around your shoulder and pulls you into a toned chest, his sun-kissed skin warm against yours.
"Then you should apologize for waking me up." You try wiggling out of his hold, but he follows you, nose nudging the crook of your neck while his slender fingers press into your hip bone.
You sit up, "Let go," Pushing the blankets from your sweaty skin you realize you wouldn't be getting any more sleep with him beside you - the literal sun himself.
His sleepy gaze follows you as you move towards your dresser drawers, "Come back. I'm sorry for waking you."
It takes only one glance to determine his motives, almond-shaped eyes flickering up and down your bare skin. He lays on his side, an elbow propping up his head, fingers combing through dark messy hair. You can't help but let your gaze wander down over the thin cotton sheets draped across his lower half. A smile ticks up the edge of your lips. More often than not, this guy has a way of forcing you to convey urges you push down. It's one of his many endearing qualities that annoy the living hell out of you.
Rolling your eyes you push your drawer shut again and make your way back to the bed. As soon as you slide back into his reach his hands are on you, tugging you to his lap as he rolls over. He looks up at you - eyes lowering to your exposed chest then waist, where his hands begin to wander up. When he reaches the swell of your breasts his fingertips graze along the supple skin, eliciting a sharp intake of air from you, "Say it."
Your eyes flutter open, annoyance coming full force, "That's a little cliché, don't you th-" His thumb and forefingers clamp down on your nipples and a submissive whine falls from your lips.
"I said, " He hisses, lips pressing against your sternum, "say it."
You let out a sigh, "Hoseok, "
A satisfied smile lights up his face and he releases you, letting his hands fall to your thighs, "Good girl,"
You snort, trying to distract from your flushed cheeks, "What are you getting at?" You nudge the fingers that caress you, "Don't tell me you want more this early in the-"
"I do," He leans in, speaking between slow and teasing kisses that he places along your neck, "but," He sighs, "I do need to ask you something first."
"Ask me what?" You pull away.
"Ah, " He groans, "won't you let me soften you up first?" Hoseok has always been like this, avoidant of serious topics and more than active during the sexual or unimportant ones.
His eyes shift away from yours, finding your pastel sheets more interesting, "I don't want to ruin this."
"Oh, yeah?" You begin to pull away from him again, only his grip on you tightens.
"Alright," He hums, snaking his arms around your waist, "will you be mine then?"
You freeze against him, staring with wide, unmoving eyes, "Excuse me?"
"I know, but I care about you. I even-"
"No." You shove his arms off to crawl out of the bed.
"You don't have to say it back. We can just-"
"No, we can't just. We had a deal. You were supposed to tell me if you ever developed feelings. I'm not the slightest bit interested in a relationship, or you for that matter."
He rolls his eyes as you put your clothes on, "I've always had feelings for you. I only said I didn't so I'd have a chance."
You freeze, turning to look back at him as he sits up, "Seriously?"
"I'm in love with you ____." He smiles as if he's just said the simplest thing in the world. Like it's easy for him to just give away everything he is to someone else - someone like you no less. A person who couldn't give a rat's ass for his so-called feelings.
You let out a dry laugh and turn towards the bathroom, "Love, huh?"
"Give me a chance to prove it and I'll have you falling for me in a week."
"I have no interest in love, Hoseok."
Hoseok clicks his tongue, "So cold, you won't even budge an inch?"
"What is it with men and not knowing what the word no means?" You pick up your toothbrush only to feel hands smooth over your hips and enclose you in a pair of strong arms. Where your skin meets him, a flame blooms, though you choose to ignore it to instead squeeze toothpaste onto your brush.
"Say you'll think about it."
You turn around to face him, your chest touching his, "If I say that, will you get out?"
He nods with satisfaction.
You place your toothbrush in your mouth and push him away from you, "I'll think about it."
"Good, " He smiles, "I'll be going overseas to visit my sister this weekend. By the time I get back, you'll have decided. Right?"
"Sure," You feign interest and begin brushing your teeth.
"'Think about it', as if." You scoff, "I've told him a thousand times over that I'm not interested. After this, we're done. I've already blocked him."
"I mean, I can't blame the guy. You've been going at it for over a year now."
"Jin," You grab the finger his pointing at you accusingly, "he knows next to nothing about me."
He hums, taking his hand back, and passing you a paper bag that's filled with your favorite breakfast pastry, "I just saying, maybe you should give him an actual chance this time."
"Why?" You raise an eyebrow as you take the bag from him, "So he can prove me right?"
"You haven't been in a real relationship since high school. You can't act like you know what it's gonna be like."
"How much different can relationships be now? They're nothing but trouble. I fail to see how that can change just because I'm older." You furrow your brow while picking at your food.
"Relationships aren't trouble, they're work. You're just too lazy and cold hearted to see that."
You groan and take a drink from your coffee, "Whatever, as if you'd understand. You fall in love with everything with a pulse."
He nods at you, unashamed, "Love is the seasoning of life - to live without it is to be dead."
"You're so melodramatic."
"Alright, change of subject. I've been hearing whispers from people." Jin smiles brightly at you.
"Oh? And what's that? More gossip?"
"Gossip?" He scoffs, "I'll have you know that this is top-quality news I'm gathering day to day and I ought to be running an article for this school."
"Tch, " You take a bite out of your breakfast, willing yourself to ignore your elder.
"Anyway," He huffs dramatically, "as I was saying, this Valentine's Day there's going to be a big party at the Jjang house-"
"There's always a big party at Jjang."
He narrows his eyes at you, "If you'd let me finish I was going to say, they're making it so that everyone who shows up has to wear red and a mask, or you're not allowed in."
You swallow your food and cough, nearly choking, "Huh?"
"Yup, they finally got sick of all the hate the art department dishes out on them."
"Can you blame us?" The booth cushion dips beside you and you turn to see another one of your friends now leaning over you to steal a piece of your breakfast, "My grandmother could throw a better party than those guys and she's dead."
Jin chokes on his drink, "Jungkook! Your poor grandmother!"
You snort, "Hey, Kookie."
Jungkook gives you a goofy smile as he chews before turning back to Jin, "My grandma is alive and well, Hyung. It's only a metaphor."
"A metaphor?" Jin sputters, "Do you even know what a metaphor is?"
Jungkook shrugs and smiles when you pass him a bag of donut-holes, "Not exactly."
"I think what he said can be implied as a metaphor."
Jin's eyes cut over to you, "Yeah, well, you're as much of an idiot as he is, if not more so." A sack of donuts slaps against your chest and you catch it before it falls into your lap, "You two need to go before you're late to that practice again."
"Alright, but before that how'd it go with that girl Yuna?"
Jin's eyes snap back in your direction as he sucks in a sharp breath of air, only to choke on the egg sandwich he'd been chewing. Coughing profusely, he lets out a croak, "What the hell?"
You bite your lip to keep from laughing, watching as your friend wipes the egg off his face, which is more than you can say for Jungkook. He's cackling so hard that people in the cafe are starting to turn their heads.
"Honestly, I bought you both breakfast and now you're harassing me in public," Jin grumbles under his breath.
After a bit more "harassment" you and Jungkook leave Jin to head to your practice. As strange as it is for an art major you've had an obsession with sports since you could remember. So, you joined one of the few sports teams available at your university your freshman year. You also convinced Jungkook to join alongside you. Convincing him wasn't that difficult either, seeing as both of you are extremely competitive. All it took was a bit of taunting.
"Early as always you two." A hand pats your shoulder and you laugh nervously.
"Whatever," She drops her sarcastic tone, replacing it with a cheerful laugh, "just hurry up and get changed. I swear you do on purpose."
You turn to look at her,"Do what?"
She glances at Jungkook, who's already left you behind to get changed, "Oh, nothing." She pats your shoulder again with what you might call a forced smile, "I wouldn't want things to be awkward."
You raise a brow as Irene leaves you be to start warm-ups, "Okay?"
Irene is the team captain and a good friend of yours. It's hard not to be her friend when she's so easy to get along with, although you've shared a few weird moments with her that suggests something to do with Jungkook. You've suspected for a while now that she may have a crush on your best friend, but being unsure you refuse to help her or get involved in any way. Jungkook hates when you meddle with his love life, which you learned from experience when you tried to set him up with a girl in your anatomy class. Long story short, Kookie was forced to turn that girl down and was upset with you for a week about it. Ever since you've refused to help any of the girls that have approached you to get to him.
Once in the dressing room, you quickly change clothes and lace up your shoes after tying your hair up.
Love just isn't something you should involve yourself with. Whether it's for yourself or your friends. Who knows, maybe bad luck with love runs in the family.
You leave the dressing room and approach where Jungkook waits for you on the court, "Warm ups?"
"Yeah," He nods, "Irene wants us to catch up with the others. So, she's probably going to give us more to do once everyone is finished. Let's get this done as fast as possible."
"Alright, full speed ahead." You playfully bounce on your toes a few times before making your way to the other side of the net across from Jungkook as he tosses the volleyball from hand to hand, "Show me what you got, virgin."
He laughs, "I think you have the wrong idea about me."
"Then you shouldn't have a problem proving it, right?"
"Just ask your sister."
"I don't have a-"
"Wait nine months."
With that Jungkook tosses the ball up and jumps for it, landing a harsh slap on it that sends it hurtling through the air toward you - only, you're caught off guard when someone suddenly shouts at you and your head whips around. The ball slams into your chest, knocking the wind out of you with a dramatic 'oof'. And stood there, at the entrance of the gym, is a group of dance majors that you can't stop yourself from scowling at. Especially, when you notice him silently avoiding your eyes at the center of the group.
The one on his left laughs, having seen you land firmly on your ass, "Did you both see that?"
"Glad we came in late today. We could've missed it, right, Jimin?" The other nudges him.
He hums in response but doesn't look in your direction, just continues toward the dance studio.
Sixteen Years Before the Switch
"She's pretty isn't she, Jimin?"
The boy shifts his gaze before hiding behind his mother's leg.
"Why don't you go play? I'll be right here. I'm not going anywhere."
She nods with an encouraging smile, "She won't bite."
Jimin was only five at the time, you four and typically, when two children are neighbors they become friends, sometimes best friends for that matter, but that just wasn't the case with you and Jimin.
"Hi, I'm Jimin. Me, my mommy, and daddy live next door."
You didn't respond, just continued playing with your blue toy truck, quietly ignoring the boy next to you.
"I like the color of your truck."
You glanced over your shoulder at him, only to quickly look away again when you met his eyes. His presence was making you nervous, you only wanted him to go away. But, he didn't take your rushed gaze as a sign to give up and go away, if anything it only made him think to try harder and that's when he reached for your hand, "Let be friends-"
"Leave me alone!"
Sure, you didn't necessarily bite him, as his mother had suggested, but you sure as hell pushed him away and ran. Admittedly, it wasn't Jimin's fault. Moving to Busan had been the beginning of the end for you. Your Mom hoped that maybe Jimin and you would hit it off. After so much change in your lives, she wanted at least you to be happy, even if she wasn't. Though, the similar interest in sports and sweets made no difference. The bickering never ended between Jimin and you. Coaches were forced to put one of you on the bench, while the other played, or someone was getting hurt. If your families ever had dinner together, you fought over dessert.
"You'll only get hurt."
"Me being a girl makes no difference in my abilities to plow you into the ground, Jimin!" You throw the soccer ball at his face, landing a satisfying thwack.
You think Jimin grew to hate you for it. Not that it mattered at the time, since you disliked him first.
"But that's the last piece, Momma."
"Jimin is our guest ____. Don't be rude."
You glared at Jimin across the table, wishing your legs were long enough to kick him from where you sat.
The older you got, the worse it became.
"What did you say?"
Your teammate scowls back at you, "I said, you're a girl and outta act like one."
"And who are you to say what a girl outta act like?" You shove him into the lockers just behind him and he yelps in surprise.
You pause, head-turning to the left where the entrance to the hallway is.
"Don't you think you're being a bit reckless?"
Stepping back from your teammate, you sigh, "Great, just what I need."
Jimin has always been the popular type, loved by everyone for acting like someone he isn't. That's probably what annoyed you the most about him when you got older, he was never himself. He always lied about what he thought or how he felt to please others while acting completely different when no one else was around.
"Leave him alone and go to class, ____."
"Or what?" You laugh dryly, "You're talking as if I'm bullying this guy when he's the one who-"
"Didn't you hear me? Are you deaf?"
Your glare sharpens, "Oh, I heard you, Park."
Long story short, that was the first time you'd ever been suspended. Your mother was pissed, to say the least, and you quit the soccer team that year.
A week before the Switch
Jimin eyes you from the entrance of the gym, expressionless as his friends cut up on either side of him. You can't help the scowl that contorts your face, nor the tension that builds up in your shoulders. It's been a few months since you've seen him on campus and you'd almost forgotten about him, until now.
You take Jungkook's hand and stand back up, "Fine." You dust off your bottom with a sigh. Another thing, none of your friends know about Jimin. Seeing as he is someone you wish you never knew, it makes sense that you avoid even the subject of him like the pledge.
"Let's start over, you hit this time." Jungkook passes you the ball then turns to head back under the net.
With a solid nod, you force yourself to relax, putting all your tension into your fingertips that now grip the ball.
Jimin just so happens to also have a love for the arts, which has lead to the two of you attending the same university - him being a dance major and you, art. Luckily, you rarely see each other since dance majors normally reside on the opposite side of campus. On the off chance, you do see him it's always because of volleyball practice or one of his friends, who just so happens to be an art major.
"____, earth to ____?"
"Sorry," You toss the ball up and slam your hand against it, sending it through the air and over the net.
"Nice," Jungkook bumps the ball back to you. You run for it, the feeling of eyes following you.
You have a sinking feeling that something super annoying is in the works.
To be tagged send an ask🏹💌
Title: Take Me Now, I’m In Too Far
Rating: M (for sexual content)
Art Credit: @inknigella (used with permission)
Day’s Notes: I have recently updated this fic on Patreon. It is one of three fics of mine exclusive to Patreon, but here’s a chance to read Part 1 of my “exes as roommates” AU. This fic is dear to me in almost the same way Kingdom For Two is. The fic started as a simple Roommates AU, but then was molded into something else when I decided to add the fact that they were exes. I wanted to write about two people that love each other a lot but growing up and becoming “real” adults made things difficulty.
If you would like to give this fic a chance and enjoy Part 1, you can find Part 2 & Part 3 on Patreon. Here is a link to the tag for this fic. I have opened up the $1 tier permanently for access to exclusive fics and early access to publicly posted fics, but I have other tiers with different perks. One of the perks for certain tiers are PDFs that contain exclusive art that will only be found in full on my Patreon (or in some cases Cj’s Patreon). The above banner was created with a preview of one of the many works Ink has provided to help bring my work to life.
I hope you all enjoy the first part of this fic and consider becoming one of my patrons 😊
She was going to kill Karin. And her stupid boyfriend. She was going to kill Karin and her boyfriend and then take back the armchair she let them have as a moving-in-together gift.
Sakura wasn’t that surprised when Karin told her she was moving out. She had been spending so much time at Suigetsu’s apartment, it was as if she had already moved out months ago. It was only a matter of time before the two of them would officially move in together.
Karin had been considerate and had found her a new roommate before she gave her the news. And although Sakura wasn’t too keen on the idea of living with a stranger—a man at that—she was willing to put up with it for her friend’s happiness.
At least for a few months while she looked for a new place if possible.
Unfortunately for Sakura, she couldn’t set a day to actually meet her new roommate before he was set to move in. Their schedules conflicted most days so Karin went ahead and took care of all of the necessary paperwork and was present when he moved in. With how things had begun, Sakura assumed she wouldn’t meet her new roommate until her day off.
She hadn’t expected to run into him as she was leaving for work at the bakery at three in the morning and he was coming home smelling of booze.
She definitely didn’t expect to see her ex-boyfriend holding a key to her apartment.
“You’ve got to be shitting me,” Sasuke muttered, running a hand through his messy, jet black hair.
“You’re my new roommate?” Sakura scoffed, wringing her hands in the scarf she was attempting to put on on her way out. “How did you not know that I was Karin’s roommate?”
Sasuke looked at her impassively for a moment, as if mulling over what he wanted to say before pushing past her and saying, “I’m going to bed.”
“What? We’re not even going to talk about this?”
“If we start now, you’re going to be late for work,” he called back to her without turning around. “Can’t have that can we?”
Sakura scoffed but couldn’t retort. He was right. If she missed her bus she was going to have to wait for the next one and it would cause her to be late.
She wanted nothing more than to bang on his bedroom door and demand that he come out and speak with her. How could he just go to sleep!?
“We’re talking when I get back!” She shouted, grabbing the front door. Sakura waited but there was no response. She growled in frustration and slammed the door behind her on her way out.
“Have you been taking your anger out on dough again?” Ino commented dryly between page flips of a cake catalogue, pointing out cute designs to the toddler sitting on her lap and cooing.
Sakura rubbed her temple with the heel of her palm and sighed. It was one in the afternoon and she had spent the day busy working on custom orders. At the moment she was sitting through a consultation with her childhood friend who needed to order a birthday cake for her son, Inojin. She had tried to throw herself into baking and packaging orders but now that there was a slow down where it was only her and two of the shop clerks, her mind was free to think about how her ex was now living with her.
“You know how Karin moved out and found me a roommate?”
“Uh-huh, it was kind of unexpected. Isn’t it a little early though? They’ve only been dating for━”
“Sasuke is the roommate she found me.”
“Holy━sorry, honey.” Ino interrupted herself and covered her son’s ears. “Holy shit!”
“I wanted to call her and chew her out but in her defense, she doesn’t know he’s my ex-boyfriend.” Sakura slumped in her seat, took a fork and dug into one of the cake slices she brought out for tasting. “When I did get a chance to talk to her earlier, she said that apparently Suigetsu is best buddies with him and Kiba. Kiba and Sasuke were rooming with their friend Shino but the lease was coming to an end and Shino was moving away for a teaching job and Kiba decided to move in with his fiancée. So━”
“So Sasuke needed a new place quick and conveniently Suigetsu knew a place close enough to his workplace and with someone that desperately needed a new roommate.”
Sakura tossed the fork over her shoulder in defeat and dropped her head into her hands. Ino reached over and patted her arm in a comforting manner.
“I give you guys two weeks.”
“Two weeks for what?” Sakura lifted her head up to narrow her eyes at Ino. “Before we kill each other?”
Ino covered Inojin’s ears one more time and said, “Two weeks before you’re fucking.”
“Ino!” Sakura sat up, looking affronted, hand clutching the front of her apron.
“You guys used to go at it like rabbits,” Ino gave her a sly smile, “and it’s not like you guys broke up because you grew to hate each other.”
“That was years ago, Ino.” Sakura rolled her eyes and pushed the cake slices closer to Inojin. He immediately sank his fingers into the cake and ate from his hands. “He’s probably moved on anyway.”
“It was the stupidest break up.”
“I know it was, but we were so busy and our schedules never aligned. It was frustrating.” Sakura sighed and stared off into space. “It’s been four years…”
Ino took out some wet wipes and cleaned Inojin’s chubby fingers. “So what are you going to do?”
Sakura shrugged. “Nothing.”
“Nothing?” Ino looked at her incredulously. “You’re just going to live with him and not do a thing about it.”
“I didn’t even notice he was there for three days already.” Sakura shrugged again. “And our schedules never sync up. I really don’t think it will be an issue.”
“Unless he brings someone home,” Ino said the words slowly so Sakura couldn’t miss what she was telling her.
“He’s not as insensitive as that.” Sakura crossed her arms in front of her chest. The action was to get as close to hugging herself without actually doing it.
The truth was that the Sasuke she knew wasn’t insensitive. But she didn’t know this Sasuke; a Sasuke that was twenty-five instead of the twenty year old she knew and loved.
The new apartment was a lot closer to the tattoo parlor he worked at than his old place. It was one of the things that sold him on it when Suigetsu mentioned that Karin was moving in with him and leaving her old roomie without. That and the washer and dryer included in the apartment which meant no more paying at a laundromat or to use the communal laundry center.
Sasuke wasn’t too keen on sharing a space with a woman he didn’t know but Karin insisted that his roommate was clean and quiet and that with her work schedule he wouldn’t be running into her except on Sundays when her bakery was closed.
That was the first sign that had him want to put the pen down and walk away. Because baking is what she wanted to do for a living. But what were the odds that Karin was talking about her? There were tons of bakeries in the city and Sakura didn’t own one the last time he checked.
But that was five years ago when she was nineteen and too young. She was still pretty young to be a business owner but with Sakura’s tenacity there was a highly likely chance that she would have her own shop. And wasn’t that one of the reasons she had been saving every penny she could when she started working?
Shaking his head of all of those thoughts, he had signed the documents that would transfer him as the new leasee replacing Karin.
It wasn’t until he was moving in that Sasuke found out who exactly Karin’s roommate had been.
Suigetsu and he were bringing in boxes while Karin gave him a tour of the apartment when he saw the photos on the wall. Anyone could dye their hair pink but what were the odds that another pink haired woman around Karin’s age would have gone to Catholic school for high school and wore the same uniform that Sakura used to prance around in.
“Sakura is pretty sentimental so she has photos all over the apartment,” he distantly heard Karin explain as he examined all of the photos that were lined up in the hallway leading to the bedrooms. “Come check out the bathroom. It’s pretty big ‘cause the washer and dryer are set up in there. There’s a door to block out that area from the toilet and shower cabin for some privacy. It’s frosted glass but you can’t really see what’s going on on the other side.”
Karin hadn’t been friends with Sakura when the two of them had been dating so he couldn’t fault her for not knowing but Suigetsu did know that Sakura was his ex.
An ex he was still kind of hung up on.
Which is why after work he headed to the bar with Kiba and Tamaki, Kiba’s fiancée. They were supposed to celebrate him finding a new place but after Kiba asked why Suigetsu wasn’t there, Sasuke explained that he was banned from their usual bar for a few weeks because he let him move in with his ex without warning him.
If he was lucky he would never have to run into Sakura while he was living there. Because wasn’t that the cause of their breakup before? With her busy culinary school schedule and apprenticeship and then his work at the parlor running into late at night, they barely saw each other.
So stumbling in slightly drunk and a little high at three in the morning, Sasuke didn’t expect to see her on the other side of the apartment door in the middle of bundling up for the November cold.
Sakura still looked like she did at nineteen but different at the same time. Her face had lost most of the roundness of youth, but her figure was no longer as slim. She was still on the thin side, but unlike Karin who was all sharp edges and harsh angles, Sakura had filled out either with age or from eating one too many of her own cupcakes.
Sasuke ran a hand through his hair before tucking the arm it was attached to behind his head. He was finding it difficult to stay asleep which was all he had planned on doing before work for the day. Sakura had said something about talking later and he had been dreading having to have the conversation. He vaguely recalled saying something snarky about her running late for work. No doubt she would be upset over that.
The conversation was going to happen. But considering he would be gone before she came home from work, who knew when it would actually take place.
If he was lucky, she would wait until they were home and not find him at work like she used to.
When Sasuke first met Sakura she was wearing all of the cliche warning signs.
He was busy sketching when she strolled into the shop. Sasuke was supposed to be manning the reception desk and was likely to get bitched at by his cousin’s best friend for not paying attention.
“Hey,” greeted a cheerful voice.
Looking up from his sketchbook, Sasuke blinked in confusion at what he was seeing. Before him stood two teenage girls wearing the dark green tartan patterned pleated skirt and white button down shirt of a school uniform. The blonde one had a sweater wrapped around her waist but the slightly shorter girl with rose gold hair had a cream colored school cardigan with the school crest emblazoned on the left side of her chest.
“Our Lady of Sorrows is seven blocks,” Sasuke pointed out the door, “that way.”
“We have an appointment.” The blonde girl blew a bubble with her gum and popped it. “The school day also ended like an hour ago, dude.”
Raising an eyebrow, he flipped through the appointment book and asked, “names?”
“Ino Yamanaka and Sakura Haruno,” the girl with the pink hair answered, pointing at the girl that matched the names she gave. “We have an appointment with my cousin Sasori.”
Looking down the schedule log there it was. The new piercer did have an appointment with an Ino and a Sakura.
“Aren’t piercings prohibited at catholic schools?” Sasuke asked, eyeing the uniforms.
“Yeah, but you can’t get caught if you get them where the nuns can’t see them.” The pink haired girl winked at him, green eyes sparkling mischievously.
“What kind of piercings are you getting then?” He asked, taking out the waiver forms.
“Belly button for Ino.” The blonde girl raised her hand and took her form and filled out the form.
He turned to Sakura and waited for her answer. Her lips turned upwards at the corners in a coy smile.
Even now, if Sasuke closed his eyes and concentrated on the memory of Sakura swiveling her hips as he thrust up into her, he could see the jewelry twinkling at him as she dipped her hips.
A lot of years had gone by since that first encounter and Sasuke was no longer the shop slave he was during his apprenticeship and Sakura was no longer that rebellious catholic school girl.
It didn’t stop him from wondering if her dermals were still in place or if after all those years her skin rejected the piercings and they had to be removed.
“What’s up with you, kid?” He felt someone ruffle his hair and he swatted at the air. The only one that had the courage to do so was Konan, one of their piercers.
“Nothing,” he replied, sanitizing the tattoo bed before his next client showed up.
“His ex girlfriend found out he lives with her,” Kiba cackled from his work station. Sasuke took his discarded gloves and threw them across the room until they hit him with a smack. “Ow!”
“Why would that be a surprise?” Konan asked. Sasuke made himself busy taking needles to the autoclave to avoid responding.
“She works baker’s hours,” Sasuke heard Kiba responding for him. “They have opposing schedules so Sui’s girlfriend took care of everything.”
“Good luck with that.” Konan went to the reception counter to check the appointment book. She had already moved on from the conversation.
I’m going to need more than luck, Sasuke grumbled inwardly.
Sakura drummed her fingers against her mug, nails clinking against the ceramic. She knew Sasuke wouldn’t get home until late so she called the co-owner of her bakery and asked her to oversee the baking of the everyday goods the following morning.
While Sakura mostly ran the show in the kitchen—Hinata being too soft and gentle to command the staff—she was mostly the cake artist and worked on custom orders. It was a lot more relaxed than the job she had as a pastry chef for the high end hotel in the city, but it still demanded a lot of her time.
She could spend hours of her day just to work on a cake that would still take her three days to make all of the components for it.
It wasn’t until one in the morning that the front door creaked open, keys jingling as they were pulled out of the lock.
“You stayed up.” Sasuke toed his boots off and lined them up next to hers. The leather work boots were of a popular brand so they hadn’t alarmed Sakura despite them being part of Sasuke’s signature look.
Sakura stood up from his seat at the couch and wrapped her oversized cardigan tighter around her body. She hugged herself, feeling exposed in her pajamas. “I said we had to talk.”
“There’s not much to talk about.” Sasuke tossed his keys on the kitchen island. Sakura grabbed them and placed them on a wall hook next to her own set of keys. “I need a place to live, you need a roommate. That’s it.”
“That’s it?” Sakura asked, voice soft and slow, urging him to re-examine their situation. When he continued to stare at her impassively, Sakura scoffed.
“I didn’t know you were Karin’s roommate until I was moving in.”
“I know.” Sakura ran a hand through her hair, pushing her bangs back. Sasuke wasn’t a liar. At least the Sasuke she knew wasn’t a liar. “I know.”
“So is this the end of the discussion?” Sasuke’s eyes drifted from her to the hallway behind her. It was late and all he wanted was to get to bed. “I don’t really see any problem with us living together. You didn’t even notice that I was here for three days.”
The problem is that I never got over you. “Alright, if there’s no problem then let’s go over the rules.”
“Rules?” Sasuke gave her a blank look.
“Yes, rules. Karin and I had them and now so will we.”
“Okay.” Sasuke crossed his arms in front of his chest and leaned against the island. “What are your rules?”
“Rule number one: no fucking on the couch.”
Sasuke’s eyes went wide and he choked on an inhale. “That’s a rule you guys had or is that one you made for me?”
“That was an actual rule we had.” Sakura shivered in disgust. “Suigetsu has a very pale ass.”
“Yeah, everyone’s seen more of Sui than they’ve ever wanted to.”
“Rule number two: toilet seat needs to be put back down after use.”
“Okay, that’s definitely one you made up for me.” Sasuke stood you straighter and looked her up and down. “Do I get to make rules too?”
“I will consider them.”
“Alright.” Sasuke was silent for a moment as he pondered. “No obnoxious noises such as vacuuming when you know the other is sleeping.”
“That’s reasonable.” Sakura sat down on one of the bar stools at the island and took out her notepad. She took out a pen and wrote down a few lines. “I do my laundry twice a week━Wednesdays and Sundays, usually around noon. Having a schedule kind of helps out ‘cause the laundry room is in the bathroom.”
They went back and forth writing down rules and going over each other’s work schedule. Sakura tapped the pen on the table and took a deep breath. She didn’t want to step on any toes or be misunderstood but she needed to bring up an uncomfortable topic.
“No overnight guests.” Sasuke raised an eyebrow and in a rush to recover Sakura blurted out, “for either of us! At least not without a heads up. I don’t want to be walking around in my underwear and there’s a stranger in my home.”
“Why would you be walking around in your━?”
“I sleep like that sometimes!” Sakura snapped, cheeks heating up. “I wake up to use the bathroom or get water and I’m too drowsy to consider pants.”
“Why do you sleep in your underwear if you get cold easily?” Sasuke’s face scrunched up in confusion.
“I come home too tired to change so I just sleep in my underwear.” Sakura stomped her foot. Sasuke raised an eyebrow. “Don’t judge me!”
“Just remember that I live here now and will see your ass if you decide that pants are too much,” Sasuke yawned, “effort. I’m going to bed now.”
Sakura watched him head to his room with a frown on her face. It wasn’t until she heard the lock on his door click that she let out an exhausted sigh.
Does he have to look cute when he’s sleepy?
“Is this too much for a three year old’s birthday?” Sakura sat back and looked thoughtfully at her sketch with her chin resting on her fist.
Hinata shrugged as she continued to pipe buttercream flowers. “I mean it’s more for Ino, isn't it?”
“God,” Sakura rolled her eyes, “it really is. I’m sure Inojin would be happy with a dinosaur on a cake instead of a dinosaur made out of cake.”
Hinata giggled softly as she continued to make a bouquet out of cupcakes. She was working on cupcakes for a bridal shower. Sakura had helped her with the structure to make it appear that it was suspended in the air and now all she had to do was decorate it.
When Sakura had met Hinata, the young woman wasn’t the best baker. It was an issue of confidence and being unsure if it was the best decision she had made. Upon discovering that Hinata had a few years to become a successful baker or get married to a man her father chose, Sakura took her under her wing and when they were ready they used Hinata’s trust fund to secure a location.
At that point Sakura already had a reputation for her cake sculptures so they lucked out.
Just because Sakura couldn’t be with the person she loved, it didn’t mean she was going to watch someone give up on their dream and marry someone they were forced to.
“So how has Tinder been working out for you?” Sakura drawled as she took out the ingredients she was going to need.
“I prefer Bumble, actually,” Hinata mumbled, face flushing pink. “You know it’s weird describing myself as pleasantly plump. Usually I would just say fat or chubby.”
“But you are pleasantly plump,” Sakura teased her. “And good call on Bumble. Message any guys?”
“I might have,” Hinata muttered under her breath, face turning a dark shade of red.
“Oh, you dirty slut.”
“We only met for coffee!” Hinata insisted over Sakura’s laughter. Sakura waved her hand at her and tried to reign in her laughter. It was quiet in the kitchen until Hinata said, “I wouldn’t have minded though. He has such pretty blue eyes.”
Sakura only stopped laughing when Hinata threw buttercream at her face.
The assistants walked in from the front of the shop to find Sakura covered in pink and purple frosting, armed with a piping bag full of green frosting, and Hinata shielding her cupcake sculpture.
Sakura was exhausted by the time she got home. It was one of those rare days where she didn’t get home until late. There was so much math and engineering into creating cake sculptures and trial and error.
She slumped against her apartment door and groaned. She had just unlocked the door but had no energy to push it open.
“You’re almost there, don’t pass out now.” Turning slightly, Sakura mumbled incoherently at the sight of Sasuke holding a take out bag. “Jesus Christ, you’re dead on your feet.”
“Carry me,” Sakura grumbled.
Sighing to himself, Sasuke handed her the bag of takeout and crouched down, scooping her legs up and cradling her. “How the fuck did Karin deal with you? She’s twiggy.”
“Suigetsu was usually around or she’d drag me across the floor.” Sakura opened the bag of food and examined the contents as Sasuke set her down on the couch. “Anything I’d like in here?”
“I thought you would be sleeping, but I have some stuff you could tolerate.” He grabbed two plates and brought them to the coffee table and began to serve her some of his food. “Do you ever take a break?”
“I have a day off tomorrow technically.”
“But you’re going to go to work.” Sasuke shook his head, unruly hair swaying around his face. “Typical.”
And with that Sakura lost all desire to eat despite not having had anything to eat all day except for some bread and tastings.
“Hey, where are you? It’s getting weird just sitting here. I can order right now if you’re nearby.”
“Oh, shoot! Sasuke I’m sorry but I’m still at work.”
“Wasn't today your day off?”
So what if she was a “workaholic?” If she were a man no one would see anything wrong with how much she worked.
She knew that eventually she was going to be faced with reminders of what a shitty girlfriend she had been, but she had hoped that she would be alone as she looked back on all of the mistakes she had made.
Sasuke had forgiven her for the first missed date but once he had been stood up a second, third, fourth, fifth time he stopped making any plans for them.
“I gotta take this coat off,” Sakura mumbled, fumbling with the buttons. Sasuke reached over and helped her get free of her coat and then hung it up on the hooks by the door. If he was going to be this nice for the duration of the time they lived together, the shittier she was going to feel.
“Karin said you owned a bakery. When did that happen?” He handed her a plate full of food, much more food than Sakura would have served herself, but one look from Sasuke had her clamming up and taking the set of chopsticks he placed flat across her palm.
“A few years ago…” Sakura swallowed a bite of dumpling. “It was kind of an accident.”
Sasuke raised an eyebrow and paused in his chewing. Sakura laughed through her nose and explained to him how she had met Hinata.
She had been working at the same high end hotel she had done her apprenticeship when Hinata had been hired on the spot. The tiny, plump woman was quiet and stuttered when speaking to her coworkers because no one wanted her there.
Hinata had been hired because of her last name—the hotel being owned by the Hyūga family—with no references nor any culinary school training which was required to work at the Michelin star hotel restaurant. Due to the fact they were around the same age and because she was the newest hire, Sakura was tasked with watching over the woman. No one else would take up the responsibility thinking that Hinata would hold them back.
Sakura just couldn’t leave Hinata alone. She reminded her so much of herself when she was younger. She helped to train her during her off time and guided her through the French techniques that Sakura had been trained in.
The desire to learn and the drive was there, hidden under the fear of failure.
Sakura moved on to work at a custom cake shop where she could use more of her artistic abilities. Eventually the owner was ready to retire and was willing to sell the store to her.
She wanted to own her shop one day. It was part of her goals but brick and mortar shops were expensive. If it weren’t for Hinata’s trust fund she would never have been able to afford the shop. The two of them had kept in touch and when Sakura found out that Hinata was on her way to quitting being a pastry chef, they made plans to go into business together.
Sasuke listened to her story, never interjecting but nodding at certain intervals and slight facial shifts showing that Sakura still had his attention.
“So what have you been up to?” Sakura asked, digging through the leftover noodles in one of the cartons.
“I still work at the same shop. I moved out a few years ago. Funnily enough it was my mom that was on my case not my dad.”
“Really?” Sakura was genuinely shocked.
When she had last seen Fugaku he wasn’t the biggest supporter of Sasuke’s chosen profession. He had paid for him to go to art school, not to waste his talent working at a tattoo parlor. His mother, Mikoto, was the one that had always been his personal cheerleader.
“I think it was all of the new ink,” Sasuke gestured to his sleeve covered arms, “that really did it for my mom. She always made faces at them and commented about what kind of girl I thought I would be attracting with them.”
I always liked your tattoos. Sakura shrugged and stuffed noodles into her mouth to keep from commenting out loud.
When Sakura was just freshly eighteen and finishing her final year of high school, Sasuke was the exact kind of guy her grandmother had wanted her to stay away from. She had left money behind in her will for Sakura to attend the same school she and Sakura’s mother, Mebuki, had attended.
Our Lady of Sorrows was a Catholic private school that Sakura’s parents wouldn’t have been able to afford without the money her grandmother had left behind. She had probably hoped that Sakura would go to private school, be abstinent, go to college and then medical school and then eventually marry a doctor.
It was too bad that Sakura preferred to be in the kitchen with her father a lot more than she cared for her school. If they had let her stay in public school there may have been a better chance of her focusing on her studies and eventually going to medical school like her grandma had wanted her to. Sakura had been miserable at Our Lady of Sorrows, her only solace being Ino and baking.
Sasuke had been the kind of cliché salvation a teenage girl fantasized about. And she still couldn’t believe that at one point in their lives, she had been his.
Ino cut off the boy that usually sat at the desk in front of Sakura and slid into the seat, a manic look in her eyes. “Guess what?”
“I’m not playing this game,” Sakura laughed, completely ignoring the boy that was frowning at Ino.
“Well, fine. Be boring.” Ino huffed, blowing her bangs up and letting them flop back on her face. “But anyway so I was talking to your cousin Sasori━”
“Ino, he’s way too old for you and he’s gay. And you have a boyfriend.”
“That’s not why I was talking to your cousin, Billboard Brow.” Ino flicked Sakura’s forehead. “But anywho. So I went to visit your cousin at that parlor he’s working at now ‘cause I wanna get those piercings you wanted for your birthday━no arguments. They’re on me. We’re going after school.”
“That’s awfully generous of you.” Sakura pursed her lips and narrowed her eyes at her. “Is Sasori giving you a discount?”
Ino scoffed. “I wish! That miser,” she grumbled. Ino shook her hair out and then smiled slyly at her. “But that’s not even the best part.”
Sakura rolled her eyes. Ino was really milking the big surprise. She was too impatient for this and the homeroom teacher would show up soon.
“Remember that mega hottie from the public school at the student showcase down at The Factory Art Center?”
Sakura groaned, dropping her head onto her planner. How could she forget? She was just lucky that he hadn’t seen her run straight into a wall because she had been so distracted. The only good thing that came about that was that Ino met her boyfriend Sai that day. And that the boy hadn’t noticed her accident.
It had been a student showcase for the senior students in the schools in the city and Sakura and Ino attended for extra credit. Sakura had been mindlessly looking at all of the pieces until a tall boy wearing all black with messy hair had caught her eye. She had barely heard Ino call out “Dibs!” before she ran into one of the pillars because she wasn’t paying attention to where she was walking.
Ino had given up chase and did her best friend duties by checking up on Sakura. Luckily for her, a different dark haired boy had seen the whole thing and had come over to help out and Ino got her older boyfriend anyway.
“That was almost a whole year ago. Why must you remind me that I embarrassed myself in front of like, seven different senior classes.”
“Mega hottie works at the parlor your cousin does. He’s an apprentice-slash-shop slave.”
That, Sakura hadn’t expected. She had seen his work and expected him to go off to art school and then maybe come back to The Factory Art Center to be a resident artist or for him to even switch tracks and work at Glass & Iron━he did have some lampwork and some welding work as part of his showcase.
“So what?” Sakura swallowed. The grin on Ino’s face was foreboding.
“So,” Ino reached over and played with the ends of Sakura’s long pink hair, “someone is going to take her cute butt down there and finally meet him.”
Sakura blinked at the hand that waved in front of her face. Sasuke looked down at her with concern. She looked just about ready to pass out in her noodles.
“Are you okay? You should probably get to bed.” He would just have to clean up everything on his own. And if she tried to go to work on her day off, he’d call the tiny red terror━Karin or Sakura’s cousin, Sasori━to force her to rest for once.
Sakura rubbed her eye with the back of her little fist and murmured, “I should. Thank you for the food.”
She was so small and tired, Sasuke just wanted to scoop her up and bundle her up in her blankets. But then he remembered that she would be going to her own room and he would be going to his and there were four years between now and when he was hers.
Did she still curl herself inward like a cat when she slept? Bury herself under three blankets that weighed almost as much she did?
He could help her to her room and find out. She was dead on her feet and would probably need him to keep from stumbling and running into a wall. It would be so easy to just curl his arm around her waist, pull her closer to his sturdier frame.
It would be easy, oh so easy. And that’s why Sasuke left her to her own devices.
SoleSurvivorPaigeArgot Welcome Post
This blog is a side blog. Asks, likes, and follows will come from the mainblog @justcallmebuttlord.
Looking for Sketchy Saturday? That lives over @artistsoftheapocalypse, now!
Hunting for my comics? Pillowfort has a nice clean feed for you, without all the wip images and assorted screaming.
Common Blog Tags and RP Stuff, under the cut.
* All NSFW posts will have a content warning at the top, as well as a ‘read more’ cut. The writer of this blog may be generally horny, but I edit as best I can to keep a feed that is safe for most eyeballs to scroll through. If you need to block certain tags to keep yourself safe, please do so. That’s why they’re here. If you need to unfollow me to keep your feed safe, that’s okay. No hard feelings.
#my art: self explanatory
#my writing: also self explanatory
#RP, #in character posts: for posts and asks that are in-character as my sole survivor, Paige, or her supporting cast.
#Slightly Naughty: Written or drawn content that would qualify as a T+ rating; non explicit nudity, mild sexuality/sensuality.
#NSFW: Written content of an explicit sexual nature.*
#About Paige: Posts containing extra information about my girl.
#sketchy sketch: Unfinished or quickly done artistic work
#scraps: Unfinished or quickly done written work.
#comic work: Wip and progress images of comics I’m working on
#CW: [ insert objectionable content here ]: I tag mild sexual content, explicit sexual content, mild blood, mild gore, blood, gore, substance abuse, and emotional distress. If I feel a post merits a content warning, and it’s my addition that merited that content warning, I will put that addition under a cut with a label for the content warning above it.
I do occasionally participate RP, but I am very slow and rarely have the time to sustain long term arcs or entire universes.
I enjoy dialog, short-form, and paragraph/prose styles, I don’t use icons because I play an OC and would have to draw everything myself, but I don’t mind playing with people who do use icons.
Multiverse, multiship; listen folks I just like writing people falling in love so I ship all over the place because it makes my heart happy. I keep all my interactions separate unless all writers involved discuss and agree that our threads should effect each other, at which point we will come up with a universe name so I can tag all related posts appropriately.
Uncomfy with NSFW on your Tumblr? Totally understand, I’m happy with fade-to-black scenes or moving intimate scenes to Discord, DM me for my handle.
Don’t message me just for NSFW. Listen, it’s no fun if they’re just strangers who fuck. I like feels.
Character: Paige Argot [ Fo4 Sole Survivor ]
S.P.E.C.I.A.L base stats, no items
At time of Freezing __ Late/Post Game
Age: 31 [ At point of freezing, physically 35 when fully settled into life in Sanctuary, post-game, fully willing to discuss events at other points in her timeline ]
Complexion: Caucasian, no freckles, age lines beginning to form in the face, multiple moles/birthmarks scattered across her body.
Height: 5′ 4″ [ 162 CM ]
Build: Slender, compact
Eyes: Hazel; dark/brown at the edges, gray/green nearer to the pupil.
Hair: Auburn, cropped short, always messy, central cowlick means a few hairs are always standing straight up at the top of her head.
Comportment: Cautious but curious; near always has a gun ready, but is slow to show or make threats with it; prefers negotiation to violent confrontation.
Sexuality: Bisexual, but intensely repressed and in the closet at time of freezing. Has it a little more figured out by the late game.
Early Loadout: Hunting rifle, laser musket, pistol. Whatever armor she can find layered over the vault suit, worn until it breaks or she finds something better.
Late game Loadout: .50 sniper rifle with long range tactical scope and silencer, 6-crank laser musket with beam spreader, heavy pistol with glow site and extended clip. Mix of metal armor and combat armor, always combat chest and metal helmet, usually wrap around goggles out in the field.
Wardrobe: Heavily patched and reworked military fatigues, clearly too big for her but held onto her by her armor and various modifications she’s made. She keeps adding pockets in odd places every time she has to fix or reinforce something.
Downtime Wardrobe: Dirty white sleeveless with the blouse of the military fatigues tied around her hips.
Vices: Smokes occasionally, usually when she’s pissed off as it gives her something to do with her hands while she’s pacing and thinking. Alcoholic; Paige is an addict from leaving the vault until after meeting Virgil in the Glowing Sea. She’ll tell you that she keeps it for downtime, but the truth is she is an addict, and she sips whisky regularly because withdrawal symptoms make her hands shake. Like most addicts, she doesn’t think she has a problem, she thinks she is managing a problem-- namely, herself. She also drinks in excess during downtime to force herself to sleep.
Here’s a bunch of plot bunnies that have been floating in my head, that I’d love to discuss and play out with an enthusiastic partner.
Any pre-war ghoul: That awkward moment when you find out your new [or possibly old] smooth-skin friend is actually older than you and not just joking about being around when the bombs fell.
Daisy: Realizing Paige was her state-appointed defense lawyer back when she was arrested during an anti-war protest, before the bombs dropped.
Nick Valentine: Hey, I just met you, and this is crazy, but I remember your face from a case I worked 200 years ago, so can we talk maybe?
Nick Valentine: Paige and Nick discussing morality after killing Kellogg [ Read Also: this is the first time Paige looked someone in the face before she shot them ]
Nick Valentine: Ruminations on Jenny, and how he should remember her after his personal quest has been put to bed and he’s had some extra time to think about it, with Paige as a sounding board.
Nick Valentine: *NSFW* but yes please talk to me about wireplay. I am 100% open to shipping Paige with Nick if there’s chemistry, and I will happily theorize on all fronts on how Valentine may achieve erotic gratification in versions of his character that care about that.
Deacon: Travel and sass, literally from anywhere to anywhere for any reason. I just feel like Deacon’s energy would be really good for that kind of ‘we’re going somewhere and just passing the time’ kind of thread.
Deacon: Paige grilling Deacon about that lookout spot she found with a railroad symbol near her vault-- and whatever excuses he may try to come up with for it.
John Hancock: Paige coming to Goodneighbor to negotiate a kind of trade agreement; fresh food and clean water from the commonwealth in return for a place to send... rougher settlers who may need a watchful eye before they fully rejoin the broader community. Did I say rejoin? Oh, right, they used to be raiders. Bonus points for John being an unrepentant flirt the entire time, and possibly offering everything Paige wants in return for a private evening ;3 [ extra bonus points if their relationship is preexisting and he KNOWS he’s gonna get some, he just plays it up in negotiations as a way to tease her about how often she tends to run off again after stopping in to town XD ]
John Hancock: Wait, just who did I sign up to follow again? Travel conversations on the road, getting to know each other, sass, jokes, memories; all the stuff that happens on long car rides without the car, basically. Bonus for camp-out scenes that might get a little softer than either was ready for ;3
Any Supermutant character: Please I just want to RP with someone who tries to take an honest look at how Supermutants feel about still being alive and basically left to their own devices. Like Paige is naturally curious if there’s a somewhat friendly mutant in town she’s gonna go and peek just in hopes of educating herself.
Charon: Open to various interpretations, I just love this big guy and I love seeing all the different way RP people fill in his character. Also if you’re into shipping I have a smol and tol thirst that will never be quenched so ye I’m down.
Cait: Not to be gay on main but will you please hold me? Prefer to depart from the way the relationship was written in game, with a period of Cait regaining her autonomy after she’s recovered from her addiction. Fully open to Cait calling Paige out for patronizing or infantalizing treatment that may have continued after she was recovered, forcing both parties to take stock and re-contextualize who they are to each other. Also cool with just picking up at the point where they already see each other as fully capable adults, because we also have...
Cait: Paige having her first HARD crush on a girl since high school that she hasn’t been able to dismiss as simply finding another woman pretty, but absolutely refusing to approach because goddamn Cait’s got enough on her plate and I don’t even know if this is real feels or just messy whatever after taking care of her and she doesn’t need that in her life and who even knows if my feelings are real or if I’m just lonely???? And whatever Cait decides to do about that.
Preston. No specific idea I just need more Preston in my life and I’m willing to plot p much anything. He is a good bean and I have a mighty need for him and Paige to spend more time together as ride-or-die comrades. Paige considers Preston to be the one who saved HER-- without his group, she wouldn’t have found a reason to hang on, nor gotten a lead on Shaun that made her desire to find her son seem at all doable. She might have hung around for a few more years before she finished drinking herself to death, is all. For that, she thinks of Preston as the heroic figure; the one who gave her something to hang on to until she finally settled her grief enough to get her shit together again. I also have it in my head that Preston is the one who taught her the basics on caring for and modding energy weapons, and would happily play through chill scene of that sort of downtime from when she’s just starting to be a functional person again.
Too drunk to fuck pt.9
Previous | Part one
Whatever that text was supposed to mean, you didn't care. You purposely ignored and avoided Mark the whole week, and after a few ignored messages, he gave up, and seemed to understand what you were probably thinking, every day Jaemin walked you home -because then you'd spend more time together than if he drove, he said- after a day in school with your new friends, and every day promised to be better than the last one. Friday came sooner than expected, and you got up earlier to dress extra special, tonight's dinner with Jaemin and your parents, although excited, made you incredibly anxious. So many things could go wrong.
When the classes were over, Jaemin was waiting for you outside of your classroom, holding your hand and giving you a sweet kiss as soon as he saw you. He carried your bag as you walked to his car, before you were home for dinner, he figured it would be nice to have a real first date, not a risky late night trip or an awkward meeting with your parents. He'd never done that, dating had never been important for him, he was too busy, and too invested with his deals and his friends, no time for girls and feelings at all, but he did a great job at planning, though. He took you to a museum, fair enough, you had to go as an assignment from Art class, but when you asked him to be your museum date, he was absolutely into it, then he took you to an ice cream parlor, a cute one, with the prettiest walls and decorations, and the best ice cream you've ever had. He took you flower picking, and to a park with lots of dogs being walked, and finally back home, just in time for you to be earlier than your parents. He greeted them politely, and your father was happy to see him again. Jaemin looked as handsome as he always did, but putting on his good boy persona, he looked softer and nicer than he usually did. His hair was pushed back, and he was wearing a light, baby blue sweater, that matched your baby blue, princess dress, your mom wasted no time mentioning how cute it was that you wore matching outfits, although it was actually a big casualty you did.
They had many, too many, questions for him. How you two met, how long you'd been friends, what classes you had together, what did the rest of your friends do, what did he want to do for a leaving, what were his plans after school. Jaemin handled every single question and gave an answer to every question that astonished your parents.
Jaemin's phone received a bunch of calls, he never picked up, arguing that if it were truly important, no one would really call him, but when your parents stood up the table for a couple minutes, and he finally had time to check his phone, all the calls were Mark's, but he left no message, and your date assumed it was, probably, not important at all. Usually, at least some months ago, on Fridays they'd be going to the abandoned warehouse, get drunk and have a race, or maybe they'd be shoplifting, attending their clients and playing dumb when they got caught, and although Jaemin, and the rest of his friends, knew it was bad, a tiny particle in his mind is telling him that he should be doing that right know. There's a part of them that has accepted the path they started walking so long ago, and it's a shame that they did, since the could be doing so much better.
After the food, and the awkward, intrusive, questions were out of the table, Jaemin suggested you went to Jeno's place again, and because you had no interest in staying home, you agreed, asked your parents permission to be home, and reluctantly they said yes, although you knew they agreed basically because Jaemin is too convincing, and too likeable.
He drove with the windows down, which made the chilly air play with his hair, giving him this absolutely attractive, messy hairstyle, and then all you wanted to do was to make him stop and kiss him while you ran your fingers through his hair. The annoying ringtone of your phone got your mind back to where you were sitting, and looking at the notification bar, you notice how many texts from Mark you got all day long, last one being received in thus exact moment.
“Friday, 7:15 a.m, Mark ♡:
“can we meet today?”
“Friday, 8:30 a.m, Mark ♡:
are you free after this period?”
“Friday, 9:48 a.m, Mark♡:
are you okay?”
“Friday, 2:45 p.m, Mark♡:
are you at home”
“did I do something wrong?”
“Friday, 4:04 p.m, Mark ♡:
I think you hate me?”
“you're with jaemin right?”
“Friday, 6:36 p.m, Mark ♡:
So i saw jaemin driving”
“And i was about to get close”
“and then i see you on the passenger side”
“you couldve replied, yk”
“Friday, 7:19 p.m, Mark ♡:
Ans know im fucking drunkk”
“Friday, 8:58 p.m, Mark ♡:
hu sorry im liken really rly drunk”
“im at jenooossssss'”
“ypu should comeb too”
By the time you finished reading, it was too late, Jaemin had already parked, and when the men inside noticed, all of them, except Mark, came out to greet him, and when they saw you, they couldn't look happier. They urged you inside, but before you could get to the living room with them, Jeno stopped you and Jaemin.
“So, look, Mark is... Kinda sensitive right now” he looks into his direction, Mark sitting on the floor, with his head head resting on Renjun's lap, he's laughing and smiling and rubbing his hands on the carpet “I don't know what he had, he's drunk but, I think he might be high too”
Jaemin makes an effort to keep his annoyance unseen, remembering that every time Mark drinks, it's a mistake, a mistake that he's gonna have to solve.
“Just” Jeno knows, Jeno can read Jaemin like a book, and although he agrees that they shouldn't be the ones caring after his oldest friend, he can't let him alone whenever he needs them “don't mind him, he's saying weird shit, he's harmless”
Jeno sits in the couch next to Renjun, trying to block Mark's view of you, but when you walk in, holding Jaemin's hand, he loses it. His laugh is insanely loud, and it's almost scary, making Jaemin squeeze your hand harder between his, and he grabs someone's drink and takes it in a single sip, you can tell it was strong, because of the face he's making. Suddenly, everyone in the room is uncomfortable, waiting for someone to make the next move.
After minutes of staring at the wall in front of him, Mark stands up, tumbling when he does, and walks closer to you, stopping when you are just a few centimeters away from him. Jaemin reacts immediately, pushing Mark away from you, and putting himself between you two. Mark giggles, he looks innocent, and when you're about to apologize to him, that sweet look disappears.
“Are you really gonna let her get between us?” he asks jaemin, arrogance in his tone, and absolutely spiteful when he looks at you.
“You're drunk, go home” all eyes are on them both, but no one really dares to interfere.
“Is that all you're going to say?” he walks closer to Jaemin, and although he wishes that Mark doesn't do anything else, he's ready for whatever he tries “is that it, huh? I give you a home when you need it, a job, money, my time” he grabs Jaemin by the collar of his shirt “I let you into my life” Renjun rushes to you, dragging you out of the room, meanwhile Jeno and Donghyuck try to get Mark and Jaemin away from each other.
Everything happened too fast, and you can't even complain when Renjun walks you upstairs to Jeno's room and locks the door. You can hear the screaming from downstairs and there's nothing you can do to help. Your mom couldn't have possibly chosen a worst time to call, lying, you tell her that as soon as the movie you're watching is over, Jaemin will drive you back home.
Jisung and Chenle are leaving, after Renjun insisted that they shouldn't be there, although they are worried, they know there's not much they can do, and promise to be ready if something else happens, they say you goodbye from the porch, and offer to walk you home, but you know you can't leave just yet.
Jeno was successful in calming Jaemin down, but Mark wasn't going to stop until he got what he wanted, Donghyuck and Renjun getting tired of dealing with him, but doing it anyway because the idea of what could come next was too scary. Jaemin unlocks the door, and brings you back down, with Jeno and himself protecting you from whatever Mark could try, going outside and into his car. Jeno apologizes to the both of you, and runs back inside.
Jaemin doesn't speak in the whole way back home, when he stops, he opens the door for you, walks you to the door, and says sorry when you open the door. You can only shake your head and give him a kind smile, hoping that he understands what you are trying to say. He drives away, but instead of going home, as you wished he did, he takes the way back to the mess, you watch him drive off, and you can only hope that things don't end up too bad.
“Saturday, 1:26 a.m, unknown number:
Don't panic, but Mark's in the hospital”
A.N: well that escalated quickly 😳
HeyyYYYyYy I'm finally bringing this back, after, well, i got notes from the whole series again. I hope you're having a good time guys, be healthy, be safe.
a twist, a tale, a rip through my sail (1/1)
Summary: Beca goes to visit Chloe in Atlanta.
Word Count: 2,266
Part of now i see daylight—an au series that was created alongside @asimplefavors and explores beca and chloe’s lives together as if they had been childhood friends.
Warnings for references to sex. And angst, unfortunately.
Read below or on AO3.
* * * * *
“Hey Bec, I think I must have just missed you...call me back when you can.”
“Hi Beca, I just wanted to call to say that I missed you. And I love you. Hope we can talk soon.”
“You just got back on the plane, but I miss you already, Chloe.”
“Bec, I don’t think I can swing coming to L.A. this weekend...it’s a lot of money. Call me back?”
“I’m trying not to be jealous of dumb tabloid stuff, I really am, but...just call me back, Beca.”
“Chlo, I know you said you were busy with school, but please let me know if you can give this song a listen. I think you’ll really like it. Love you.”
“I had a dream about you. Felt like you were right there. I miss you so much.”
* * * * *
What do endings feel like?
Beca feels it in the air between them the moment she comes face to face with Chloe at the airport. All the usual happiness upon seeing her girlfriend is still there, but God, it’s all the other things she feels—the intense foreboding, the anxiety, the dread—that make her slow her steps as she nears Chloe who is leaning against a pole, evidently watching something on her phone.
She had felt it while she had been on the plane, but now, standing on the ground next to her girlfriend of three and a half years, she knows it is real.
“Hi,” Beca greets quietly, smiling nonetheless when she sees Chloe’s eyes lift and brighten upon catching sight of her.
Chloe immediately wraps her in a hug, nothing new. Beca squeezes back, sighing happily at the warmth Chloe brings to her immediately. She feels Chloe tighten her hold similarly.
Everything is so familiar.
Chloe pulls back. “Hi,” she greets back, finally. She cups Beca’s cheek, leaning in to kiss her gently. “I missed you.”
Beca smiles despite the sensation in her stomach. “I missed you too,” she mumbles, eagerly leaning up to ignite another kiss.
Everything is fine.
* * * * *
It had started with a few missed dates. Many missed dates. Angry voice mails.
Beca recalls each one now that she sits next to Chloe in the passenger seat of her car—a familiar car with many memories—and with each memory, anxiety gnaws at the back of her mind.
She resists the urge to reach across the console to place her hand on Chloe’s thigh even though she longs desperately for that closeness.
Chloe doesn’t look at her once the whole drive home.
* * * * *
It feels so routine—everything is routine, right down to Beca dropping her bag just inside the door to Chloe’s room, kicking the door closed with her heel, and immediately being pulled into Chloe’s arms for a deep, messy kiss. The kind of kiss that still makes Beca’s stomach twist in anticipation even after so many similar kisses.
Sex is routine now, especially with how little they see each other. Beca barely gets her shirt off before Chloe is pulling her jeans down, pulling her underwear down and licking through her folds like no tomorrow. It makes Beca gasp and moan and make every sound imaginable. That is a skill only Chloe possesses, the skill to be able to draw those sounds out of Beca like art.
Beca grasps Chloe’s hair forcefully, keeping her girlfriend’s face between her legs as she rides out her orgasm, grunting as she does so. Vaguely she realizes that Chloe’s clothes are still on, even as Chloe carries her to the bed and spreads her legs once more, her fingers doing the work this time.
“I missed you so much,” Chloe rasps into Beca’s ear. Beca’s hands grab at the fabric of Chloe’s shirt. “I missed you,” Chloe repeats, breath hot against Beca’s ear.
Eyes falling shut at the sensation of Chloe’s lips trailing along her ear and her fingers curling into her aching cunt, Beca tells herself that it means I love you. Beca tries to tell herself that all of this means I love you. I want to be with you. I love you.
I love you.
“I missed you too,” she mumbles, eyes slipping shut at the sensation of Chloe adding another finger.
She feels full.
* * * * *
Chloe’s arm curls over her waist in the middle of the night. They sleep, pressed closely together. Like two peas in a pod, Chloe used to joke.
Beca breathes in deeply, holding Chloe’s arm against her in fear that she might let go. She wonders if Chloe has already let go, somehow. In the same ways Beca feels herself floundering.
But being in Chloe’s arms feels so right—feels like everything that Beca has ever been missing is right…there.
She presses Chloe’s arm tighter against herself, maneuvering it so she can clutch Chloe’s hand close to her chest.
Chloe mumbles in her sleep and presses closer, bare skin sticking to Beca’s. It is not uncomfortable. Rather, it is quite the opposite. It makes her feel whole, like a reminder that Chloe is there—that Chloe has always been there.
Emotion swells in Beca’s chest as her mind betrays her once more, playing back every last argument and fight they’ve had over the past little while.
To Beca, it had seemed like they recovered each time, but the scars would always remain.
Don’t let go, Beca thinks. Please.
To her credit, Chloe doesn’t. Not immediately, at least. She holds Beca close like she always has, lips pressed loosely against Beca’s shoulder, her neck. Breath hot against her neck. Even in sleep, Chloe had always managed to make Beca feel whole.
Don’t let go, she thinks again. Nearly begging.
Chloe does eventually. She lets go, early in the morning as Beca blinks awake, wondering if she got any sleep at all. She yawns, stretches, turning onto her back.
Beca immediately follows, rolling over to face Chloe to surprise her with a morning kiss.
Silently, Chloe responds, pulling Beca closer in the warmth of her dorm-sanctioned bed. Chloe’s lips part. Hot, wanting breath against Beca’s mouth.
She could say it, Beca thinks. Either of them could.
It just feels so much easier to pull Chloe on top of her. It just feels easier to have Chloe want her like this.
* * * * *
It feels like a normal weekend. In fact, it should be a normal weekend. Beca is free from the confines of Los Angeles and happy to face relative anonymity in the sprawling spaces of Atlanta and Barden University. But the heavy weight of the turmoil clouding their relationship becomes near unbearable to Beca even as she nestles comfortably into Chloe’s side.
Chloe says nothing—it occurs to Beca that Chloe has said very little all weekend—and simply wraps her arm around Beca, like it is so natural.
Like it’s a habit.
“Are we okay?” Beca finally asks when her heart and mind can no longer take it. It is late on Saturday night and she is pressed closely to Chloe while they quietly watch a random Netflix show.
Watch is a loose term. Beca feels like she has been gazing despondently at the screen for the better part of the hour and based on the stiffness of Chloe’s arm around her, she figures Chloe is more or less the same.
She regrets asking immediately. She almost wishes she had kept her mouth shut just to pretend a few moments longer. She could just take it back, she could just let it all go. Just clamp her mouth shut and forget it all. But the regret is so heavy because now she knows. It is so different from mere belief or mere speculation. Knowledge, ever powerful, is her undoing.
She regrets it because Chloe hesitates. Chloe has never hesitated or been less than forthcoming in her responses to Beca. Beca cannot recall a time when Chloe’s blunt honesty hadn’t played a role in some part of their interactions with each other.
But now, Chloe hesitates and her body seems to stiffen even more. There is pain in that hesitation, enough pain for the both of them.
That hesitation is enough. It is enough to make the anvil finally sink in Beca’s stomach.
And finally, because Chloe has always been honest with her no matter the circumstance, she opens her mouth and breathes out the simple syllables of Beca’s name. Like it might be the last time ever.
This is the end. This is what it feels like.
* * * * *
The end goes something like this:
“Stop,” Beca says immediately, regretting everything from the beginning to the end. “Wait, I didn’t—”
“Beca,” Chloe repeats, sounding even more pained than before. “This isn’t working, you know it isn’t.”
“It is,” Beca insists. She refuses to cry. “I’m just tired, I just—I didn’t mean it—”
“Beca, stop,” Chloe murmurs.
“You stop,” Beca mumbles back, losing some of the fight in her when Chloe reaches for her hands. She marvels at how soft and warm Chloe’s hands are, wondering when the last time was that she had felt—really, truly felt—the warmth of Chloe’s hands wrapped around her own. “Stop,” she repeats quietly.
“I’m not doing anything,” Chloe promises.
“You’re breaking up with me,” Beca says, finally putting the words out there in the open. “You’ve been breaking up with me for a while.”
At that, Chloe flinches and draws back. Beca forces her body to remain still. “I haven’t been doing that. That’s not fair. We both know this hasn’t been working for a while, but we both tried, Beca. I know we did.”
“Why are we...doing this?” The 'we' slips out. Beca doesn't even correct herself because she recognizes the lack of fight in her own emotions.
“It hurts so much being apart from you,” Chloe whispers. “And even having you here, it’s not like you’re here at all." Chloe is quiet for a moment. "...and I think we just need some space to—”
Beca squeezes her eyes shut and barely refrains from putting her hands over her ears to block out the sounds Chloe is making. It sounds like a distant roaring in her ears, but she knows better: it is the sound of her world crumbling down around her.
To her credit, Chloe doesn’t finish her sentence. Beca doesn't know what to do. Chloe is crying, but so gently and softly that Beca's arms feel too leaden to be worthy of reaching up to brush her tears away. The truth of the situation is that Chloe likely has no idea what to say either; she likely is hurting as much as Beca is, but she has always been the strong one.
It feels like a disservice to Chloe if Beca didn’t begrudgingly admit that Chloe is probably right for initiating this conversation now. It doesn’t hurt any less—it doesn’t make Beca feel any less of a failure despite Chloe’s reassurance that it was both of them who needed space.
It hurts the most that Chloe is right.
Chloe is still speaking, a quiet, gentle tone for Beca’s benefit. Beca simply nods, too numb to do much else. Chloe speaks of Beca's immeasurable talent, her growing fame, all the ways Beca needs to grow without Chloe.
A part of Beca wants to laugh at that because she has spent her entire life growing with Chloe. It seems kind of a waste to just...not do that anymore.
The other part thinks maybe there is some truth in the things Chloe is saying (and maybe in the things Chloe isn't explicitly saying). That's the part that had seen this coming. Beca should have listened.
Somewhere along the line, she reaches out to hold Chloe’s hand for what she’s sure will be her last time.
Somewhere along the line, Chloe tells her she loves her. That she’s in love with her.
Beca finds it in her to speak, forcing away the memories of her own parents’ divorce. Of the pain and loneliness. “I love you too,” she murmurs.
It is still the easiest and most honest thing to say.
* * * * *
Ultimately, it wasn’t the end that crept up on Beca. Not entirely.
It is the loneliness that sneaks up on her. It had crept up on her, unbidden, then latched itself somewhere in the back of her mind without her knowledge. Somewhere between Chloe saying “I think we should break up” and the airport and the car ride home, loneliness had crept into every available space in her body.
She doesn’t realize it until she reaches home and drops her bag heavily by the door in an almost exact mirror of how she had dropped her bag in Chloe’s room a mere three days ago. Or had it been two?
Beca supposes that it doesn’t matter.
Her apartment air feels stale. She takes in a deep breath, wondering if it had always been like that or if she had only thought nothing of it because she had lived in a world where she had a Chloe Beale to eventually return to.
Now, there’s just this.
With a shaking hand, she reaches for her phone and presses her mother’s contact on impulse. It feels like something she ought to do—something that a child should do when she’s been devastated by incomparable heartbreak.
Her mother will know what to do, her mother can help, her mother can—
“Hi, you’ve reached Diane. Unfortunately I can’t—”
She isn’t sure what she expected, but she isn’t even surprised.
Beca finally lets herself cry.
*see more of this universe—now i see daylight.*
He’s Just Tired
Pairing: Toki Wartooth/Magnus Hammersmith
Summary: Toki arrives one afternoon to find Magnus on the couch, asleep.
Magnus mentioned a change in dosage a week before their scheduled date, and made another remark about “being out of it” five days later, but neither text scared Toki away from visiting. After several months of touch and go, he mastered the art of patience and reading the room, and made a note that they might have to change the plans for that day to something far simpler and homey.
It’s late in the afternoon when Toki arrives. Magnus doesn’t answer his phone, so Toki drops everything to locate the spare keys that are in the very bottom of the over-stuffed bag he’s carrying. He stows the keys into his pocket while grabbing his things, pushing the door open with his foot. He drops his duffle bag when he hears snoring, skin unsticking itself from hefty, worn fabric, and scampers into to the living room, where he finds Magnus half-asleep on the couch.
The scene, though oddly precious upon first glimpse, does pique Toki’s interest, and as he brings himself down, his eyes wander to the coffee table situated close by, and he checks for signs of depression, of unaccounted mania long since passed, or other troubling figments that often took the form of litter, filled ashtrays and empty bottles, half-consumed food, and the rare indent in the wall. But when he checks, he sees nothing more than a few receipts and a bottle of water, and even speculates that table has been recently cleaned.
Past interactions keep him on his toes, and Toki rests on his knees, bringing a finger over to rearrange some silvery strands that obscured Magnus’ face. He tries lifting a few, watching in mild amusement when the light hits Magnus’ good eyes, causing his face to harden and stir, and for the older man to twist and raise a hand to block the light. Though he worries about the consequences, he catches Magnus’ hand in his, letting his fingers intertwine with the older man’s while Magnus stirs himself awake. Toki observes each knuckle, relived there’s no fresh cuts or bruising, and pushes his lips against each one before Magnus grunt a complaint.
Magnus scowls when he opens his eyes. “What time–?”
“You okays?” Toki asks instinctually, figuring there must be something. The texts from before make him want to jump to conclusions, blame the pills for putting him out, but he waits for Magnus to give his side.
Magnus squints, picking out Toki’s silhouette against the blinding light, then groan. “M’tired,” he murmurs, earning a soft noise from Toki, who dips down, blocking that troublesome light, and kisses him gently on the forehead. The act lulls Magnus from whatever haze he’s in, and he extends his hands out, tracing the shape of Toki’s jawline and trying to persuade it with a ticklish drag to bring attention southward.
“When did you get here?” Magnus half-asks, half-yawns.
“Just nows,” Toki answers. He watches Magnus stretch underneath him, spots his ribs ripping under his skin, and hears the soft pop of a few cramped joints. Toki thinks about the texts again, and he wonders if this is merely a case of Magnus’ brain restarting, readjusting to the decrease or increase of medication. He casually asks, “You needs to goes to bed?”
Magnus shakes his head at the idea, brings his hands down on the furniture, and begins dragging himself up. “You just got here.”
It was a mistake to turn it into a question. Toki doesn’t give Magnus much of a choice once he’s up. “C’mons,” he says, guiding the man further, letting Magnus put some of his weight on top of him to make the travel to the bedroom easier.
Halfway into the hallways, Magnus says, “I’m not that tired, bud.”
“Then rests just an hours.”
“And what will you do?”
Toki sends him a delicate smile. “Always somethings for me to do whens you ams out.”
The bedroom’s not as messy as Toki remembers it. There are jeans piled on a chair, a mirror resting precariously in the middle of the floor, and the small bin piled up with plastic bags, napkins and cigarettes, but the room is greater shape than the last time Toki visited. The blinds are aligned, black tapestry lifted and allowing some light into the room, and the only aroma Toki detects are warm spices of dragon’s blood intermixed wonderfully with tobacco and Magnus’ natural scent.
Magnus picks up on this and becomes grabby. As soon as he’s sitting on the edge of the bed, he snatches Toki, resting his heavy head against the young man’s chest. There’s a tired embrace, Toki dropping his head to breath in the clean smell of Magnus’ hair, a low sigh and a second where Toki almost contemplates joining him. A hand slips under Toki’s shirt. Cool fingertips rest on the base of his spine, then began traveling up and leaving behind desire’s strong impression, a call for intimacy before the exhaustion really begins to settle. It’s a tempting offer, one Toki is thankful he’s able decline.
Toki frees himself from Magnus, then drops his eyes down to the man’s wrinkled jeans. It’s one thing for them to pass out drunk, still-clothed, another when rest and wellness was a priority, so Toki takes it upon himself in trying to undo the bad habit.
“Takes off your pants.”
Thinking he’s won, Magnus manages an adoring grin. “That a ‘yes’, or…?”
“Laters.” Toki dips forward, meeting with Magnus and welcoming the sharp contours of his face, the scratchiness of his stubble as their lips brushed over the other’s. Toki stops himself from getting lost, pushes Magnus deeper onto the bed. “We’ll haves more funs when you ams fully wakes.”
“Give me a minute, and I’ll show you–”
“Magnus,” Toki playfully warned. There’s a slight smile in his eyes, but the message is clear, and Magnus sighs out some words before kicking off his pants, briefly exposing himself and throwing one last look towards Toki before reaching for the comforter.
Toki picks up the pants and tosses them inside of the closet. He reaches for other articles, not everyone, just those that look a little too dingy, too over-worn and used. That’s only two pairs of pants and a single shirt, none of which are so bad that Toki minds. He searches for some clean undergarments, but the sounds of Magnus murmuring something into the pillow stops him. When Toki checks, he sees Magnus already dozing off, eyes heavily lidded, and barely able to catch up with his movement.
He returns to the bed, watching Magnus’ good eye try and fail to effectively chase after him before fluttering and coming to a slow close. There’s nothing quite like Magnus falling asleep on his own, and Toki takes a minute to admire and memorize the instant Magnus slips away, and waits an additional before attempting to readjust the covers. He lifts the top, catches a glimpse of Magnus’ bare chest and waist, and is about to pull the covers when he notices his ribcage looking far less prominent. He’s still lean, but there’s less bones standing out, and when Toki covers Magnus, sees that his shoulders are starting to round off more.
Toki refrains from petting, kissing, or any other contact that might risk disturbing Magnus, so he tip-toes out and closes the door behind him.
The first thing Toki does is slip out from his boots, taking them with him into the living room before dropping them near the door. Once it’s done, he heads to the kitchen and opens the fridge. Surprisingly no rotten food, save for some wilted vegetables tucked in the far recess of the fridge. Contents were well-stocked, and although there was still a few boxed leftovers, Toki didn’t see aside from lettuce that desperately needed to be tossed. The rest of the kitchen further drives it home: Toki sees that the dishes were already washed and drying, and only needed to be put away, and that the floor didn’t have any stains or too many scuff marks, and the trash had been taken out before his arrival.
He returns to the living room which is, upon second glance, looking better than he imagined. The floor is clean. There’s no real need to sweep or vacuum. He wonders if Magnus has been keeping the windows open, because he realizes that the air only smells a little of stale cigarettes, and that’s all. He thinks about the bedroom, turns and realizes that all windows, no matter the size, all adjusted to let some light in. Not a whole lot, but enough. Enough to make the rooms a little brighter, more spacious and lived-in. Warm. Welcoming.
Toki double-backs to the kitchen. He stops at the fridge and doesn’t see any bills or late notices hanging on any of the magnets he bought. He walks over to the counter, sees a small pile of ripped up junk mail that needs to be tossed, but no notes, tickets, threats or other written warnings from the landlord, officer or neighbors.
The bathroom looks good, too. The shower could use a little work, but even Toki had to admit that bathroom chores suck the most. The mirror is clean, reflecting Toki back at himself without a single blemish, and the wasn’t a single sign of any mishaps: nothing sharp, no needles, or any signs of blood.
It’s all gone, Toki realizes. Or most of it. Maybe just some. Whatever the amount, Toki’s grateful, and he has to hold his breath and stop himself from getting too emotional, from making too much noise and waking Magnus up.
Toki reenters the hallway, spots the closed door, and deliberates going straight back in, taking Magnus as he was and crushing their lips together, whispering suggestive ideas while also telling him how proud he is of him, how nice everything looks, and how much he loves him, but Toki stops himself because he knows how tired and irritable those meds can make him the first few weeks, and he already made such a big deal about Magnus getting his rest. But for the first time ever, there’s nothing for him to clean up, nothing that needed fixing, no excuses or anything. No bills. Nothing broken. No servant with a list of concerns. There’s just a warm, lazy afternoon, and not nearly enough distractions to keep Toki entertained on his own for an hour, maybe longer. It’s a beautiful thing, and it also sucks balls, but Toki takes it for what it is, and he whips out his half-charged phone, drops on top of the sofa, reclining into the warm light of the sun, and starts texting.
Mind & Soul (4/10)
The story of how one man fell out of love and into it again
Charlie (Marriage Story) x Reader
word count 4.5k ; warnings: Angst, Fluff, Cheating/Affairs
One year ago…
He stands, on the stage.
It’s empty, always empty when he’s there, these days anyway. He comes too early and stays too late. They call him a workaholic, and they’re not wrong.
They’re not wrong.
They don’t know that he’s running though, they don’t know that he’s flying, leaping, begging, desperate to be free, to cut himself free from this tether he’s tied around his own waist, around his own finger. He looks at his finger, sees the ring there, wonders when he’ll get rid of it. He could get rid of it now, if he wants.
He’s already getting rid of so much, gotten rid of so much.
“Fuck!” He shouts, loud loud loud in the empty theater, one o’clock in the morning, no one there but the ghosts in the rafters.
Oh, those ghosts. How they mock him. How they laugh and titter.
How they weep.
Or is it him, who’s weeping?
He paces the stage, restless. He’s so restless.
Nicole’s been distant, lately. Nicole’s been distant and he’s been terrified of why, of what he did wrong to make her hate him like this. She hates him, she said as much on the phone the other day. Maybe in not so many words, but she said it. She’s distant, wants Charlie to sleep out on the couch now. Doesn’t want him in the same bed, won’t let him touch her. He doesn’t want to touch her, not anymore.
He’s been spending so much time with you, lately. You, just next door, in your pretty clothes and with your warm smiles. You babysit Henry when they’re out at parties. They got rid of that other babysitter, Charlie always thought she was kind of strange. And you’re right there anyway, you’re right there.
He’s falling in love with you.
He doesn’t regret it.
You spend all your time together, these days. Writing in coffee shops, take-out dinners of Chinese or Thai, from the vendors right on the street. You’ll walk up and down Times Square together, point out different people, make up characters for them and laugh when they’re outrageous, or awful, or too good to forget. You’ll sit together on the subway, and you always tell him that the stop is coming up, because if you don’t, he’s not paying enough attention to know.
He spends a lot of time at your house now. He likes how it feels like a home, like home. He likes the furniture and the art on the walls and the general décor. He likes how it’s neat, but lived in. Not messy, like his house always seems to be. Even when Henry is over and you’re watching him for the evening, and you two paint or build legos, or play with his action figures and cars, and there’s shit all over the place, it never feels messy.
He spends so much time with you, it feels like he’s only ever spent time with you. And that’s dangerous, that’s a dangerous feeling, because you are not his wife. You aren’t his wife, but god. God how he wishes sometimes you were.
Charlie paces the stage, restless.
He knows Nicole is home, knows she’s with Henry. He should be too, he should be. But it’s so fucking tense in the house now, with him sleeping on the couch. Henry looks at him funny now, like he knows what’s going on. Charlie doesn’t even feel like he knows what’s going on.
So he can’t bare to face him, or her, or anyone, and he’s here, at the theater.
One o’clock in the morning, at the theater.
He figures, since he’s here, he might as well fuck around on stage, might as well do some work. He’s been working on and off the past few hours.
It’s a new play, one he was working on with Nicole. But then she stopped caring, stopped wanting to help, stopped wanting to work in theater, and suddenly she wasn’t around anymore, and he had to find someone new. One of his other actors, no one special.
He asked you, but you turned the offer down, too busy with your own work. You’re a writer too, like he is, but for film. And it’s different, but not really, but different enough to keep you busy. You were the first person he asked, when Nicole left.
It’s a story about an affair, ironically enough.
He and Nicole wrote it a long time ago, back when things were still good. Maybe they were never really good, but at the very least, when they were okay. When they were fine. When they had some semblance of happiness, they wrote it. Charlie remembers them laughing about how difficult the characters are being, how if they could just talk to their partners maybe none of this would have happened.
Charlie wonders if that’s why Nicole bailed on the play, because then she’d be confronted with the same thing, confronted with how she and Charlie keep making these same mistakes.
The story of a married man and a married woman, both leaving their spouses behind to be together, and all the painful, grizzly, awful messy details that come with it.
Charlie wonders if he had some sort of sixth sense, because he’s been thinking of having an affair. He’s been thinking of having an affair ever since Nicole slammed the door in front of your pretty face, a year ago when they moved into your neighborhood. He’s been thinking of having an affair with you, if you’d let him, if you’d want him.
That was always the scariest part, always the thing that stopped him, whenever he thought about it.
What if you didn’t want him, and you’d tell Nicole, and then the whole fucking can of worms would be out right there?
He paces the stage, figures, what the hell, might as well get some blocking done.
He has the script in his hands, the pages wrinkled and water-stained and ink smudged and lined crumpled. It’s a scene between the main characters, a fight scene, and he clears his throat, stands where he thinks he should stand, where he directed Frank to stand earlier, before everyone left him.
Before everyone left him.
“I can’t do this anymore.” He says, speaking the words on the page, speaking them and meaning them.
And then it’s time for the other character, the woman, to respond, but he’s alone. He’s alone, so he shifts his body to the empty space next to where he was, steps into her shoes.
“Can’t do what?” He asks himself, asks the audience of ghosts, empty theater chairs, too late at night.
“This, us.” Charlie steps back, feeling stupid, feeling like a moron, getting choked up on the words of his own script, “I can’t do us anymore. I can’t face the day like this, wake up like this, go on like this. I can’t do this. Can’t you know I can’t do this? Don’t you know?”
“Oh fuck, this isn’t fucking working!” And then he’s shouting, throwing the script down hard onto the stage floor, pacing pacing pacing.
He runs his hands through his hair, pulls tight, paces some more.
Paces until he slips on the pages of the script and is flying backwards, landing on his ass, right on the edge of the stage. He swings his legs over it, dangles them off the stage, and shoves his face in his hands and cries. He doesn’t know what to do, he’s so torn.
He loves you so much. He loves you.
He loves you.
He doesn’t know if he can have you, but he’s desperate for you. Just to hold you, to kiss you, touch starved.
And he knows now that he’s losing it, losing his mind, when he feels hands on his shoulder. Soothing, rubbing circles there right on the tense parts of his shoulders. He feels the body that the hands belong to bend down and pick up the script, feels the pages being rifled through next to him.
“Where are you?” You ask, voice soft, and he turns his red-rimmed blurred vision towards you, up to you, because of course it’s you, come to rescue him from himself.
“(Y/N).” Is all he can say, but you’re only frowning through the lines.
“Can’t do what?” You ask, ask both as the character and as yourself, asking if that’s the right spot, and he blinks his tears away, blinks and blinks but you’re still not disappearing. You’re no apparition or ghost or dream, you’re real.
His throat tightens, he needs to tell you, needs to ask you.
He’s terrified to ask you.
Because up to this point, it’s been a year of him developing these feelings for you with no way to know if you feel anything for him at all, feel anything at all for him. You know he’s married, Christ of course you know – you babysit his kid. But sometimes, sometimes he feels like it could work, it could be something, you both could be something.
Nicole doesn’t want him anyway, if the way she’s sleeping without him, working without him, living without him is anything to go by.
“Yeah, that’s – yes.” He reaches on the side of the stage for another copy of the script, and stands on wobbling knees, weak knees, knees weak for you. “Stand here?”
“Here?” You ask, going right to the mark on the floor, the small x made in white tape.
“Yeah, that’s good.” He nods, and he doesn’t know what to do, doesn’t know where to look. His hands are sweating, and you’re so beautiful, and you’re waiting. He leaves through the script to get back to where he was, “Okay. ‘I can’t do this.’”
“Can’t do what?” You ask, and even though you swear you’re not an actress, he can feel the emotion in your voice.
“This, us.” He recites, moves around you, the two characters moving, circling around one another. He never wanted the scene to be static, never wanted it to be so still. And with you here, he’s moving, he can move as he reads, “I can’t do us anymore. I can’t face the day like this, wake up like this, go on like this. I can’t do this. Can’t you know I can’t do this? Don’t you know?”
“I don’t, I didn’t. I won’t let you give up on me that easily, surely you know that?” And then you’re chasing him, chasing him around and around, “Can we talk? Can we just talk? There’s too many questions back and forth and no answers. Just talk, talk to me.”
“I don’t know what to say! I don’t know how to say anything around you anymore, all of it gets so jumbled up, all mixed up. You mix me up, and I’m so fucking afraid of what that means.” He throws his hands up, desperate, as the two of you make your way across the stage, behind the antique couch he had just picked up just for this, the one he hides behind when he says, “You talk first.”
You flip the page of the script, bite your lips for a minute.
“I told him, just now, that I’m leaving him.” You say softly, and that’s strange, that’s not at all how he envisioned the lines being read – but he doesn’t stop you, there’s no way in hell he’d stop you now, not when you’re already continuing as you sit on the couch, “He doesn’t know why, I haven’t said that part yet. I figure that’s not fair to him, not yet. But he knows I’m leaving, knows I left. I left and came right to you.”
“You did?” He asks, hands hesitating, reaching out for you. That’s not in the lines, not in the script, and he wonders if you’ll point that out, if you’ll stop him.
You don’t stop him, not when his hand cups your cheek, when he remains standing behind the couch. No, you don’t stop him, instead you tip your head back against his stomach, turn your face into his palm, your lips hot and wet as you mouth at his fingers before looking at him – really looking at him.
“I did. And I feel free. And I feel happier than I’ve felt in a long time, and now you’re telling me you can’t do this, but why? You’re scared. I’m scared too! Can you imagine how scared I must be too? At any moment you could throw me away, I know that. At any moment you could walk away from me, from this, and find yourself someone new.” And you’re yelling, crying, you’re up off the couch and delivering this small speech to the empty theater, and he’s stunned, because he didn’t envision it like this, not like this at all.
But he doesn’t interrupt, goes with it, and the thrill of the performance fills him with hope, that maybe it isn’t just a performance.
“I don’t – ” He starts, chasing after you now, crowding behind you at the edge of the stage, arms winding around your middle as you both look out into a spotlight he turned on just for this scene.
“I’m not saying you would, I’m saying you could. And I wouldn’t keep you. I wouldn’t force you to stay. That’s the worst part. You could walk away and I’d let you, because otherwise I’d be just like her.” You mourn, mourn the possibility of what could be, what could have been.
And suddenly, he gets it, the character. Gets it more deeply than he ever did when he and Nicole were writing it.
“You’re nothing like her. Nothing.” Charlie insists, but this…he isn’t so sure is acting. This he isn’t so sure is make-believe, is pretend.
“I know, but we’re all the same, in the end. We’re all the same, even if we’re nothing alike.” You say, and this is the part where he can’t help but get choked up.
He gets choked up now, because it’s so real, all of this is so real.
Why did things have to happen this way?
“I love you.” He confesses, “I loved her, once upon a time. I tell myself that, that I loved her. But now it feels like maybe I only loved the idea of her, the idea of someone to be beside me, to support me, to love me back. She didn’t want any of that, and that wasn’t fair of her, but she never said anything, she never told me – how was I supposed to know?”
“And me?” You ask, and there are tears in your eyes, and your chin is wobbling, and he brushes his thumb across your bottom lip to soothe you, the two of you forgetting the stage, forgetting the theater, forgetting everything.
“You?” He asks, and this is going to go off script, it has to, there’s no way you can stay like this, read these lines with the intensity that you are and not mean them for your own self. He doesn’t know what to do, what to say, he’s free falling.
“Do you love the idea of me, or do you love me?” You search his eyes, flip the page, “Do you love what I can do for you, or for who I am? Is it stupid? To think you could ever love me? Am I being stupid?”
“What…?” He shakes his head, because now this is for him, this is all him. No lines, no script, just feeling, just him.
“You cheated on her, how do I know you won’t cheat on me too?” You read, but you’re really asking, you’re asking as you, asking him as you.
“It’s not, you’re not, being stupid. You’re not.” And he answers, meaning it both ways, meaning it as him and as the character he’s playing on this empty stage, “I won’t. I don’t know how I can prove that to you, but I won’t. I love you. I love everything about you.”
“What is it about me? That makes you want me more than you want her?” You ask, and the dance is back, the chase, as you walk away, as you walk around and around the stage.
“I don’t want her, not anymore.” Charlie says, and the words sting his throat when he says them but they’re true – all of this is true.
“Wanted, then.” You clarify, and he sits on the couch.
“You’re here.” He explains, and you laugh dryly, and you realize now why Nicole had laughed when he had first proposed it.
“Here?” You ask, and he can understand now, can understand how that makes it seem like he only has an interest in you because you’re around, but that’s not what he means, that’s not what any of that means.
“Here.” He takes his turn to clarify by jabbing his chest, beating his hands against his ribcage, and he’s standing again, starting to sweat from all the up and down. Somewhere far away is a world outside, but in the small theater, it’s just the two of you, and he pleads with you, begs you to see, to understand, “In here, you live here. You work here, you breathe here, you laugh and cry and smile and shout here. In me, in my soul. You’re fair and practical and selfish and stubborn just like me. You’re realistic and fantastical and have daydreams and goals and you’re here. You’re here.”
“What happens when I’m not anymore?” You demand, terrified.
“You’ll never not be, don’t you see?” Charlie gets on his knees in front of you, falls down to his knees which have given out in your presence, too overwhelmed with all of this, with having you so near like this, “When the sun rises when it rains when it snows I think of you. Of your laugh and your jokes and your fears, deep and dark and just like mine. You’re just like me. And you drive me crazy in the best ways, in all the ways that matter, and some of the ways that don’t. But you love me, and I love you. And it isn’t stupid.”
“In what ways?” You ask, and now you’re crying.
“The way you take up too much of the bed when you sleep in late, the blankets. I always wake up cold but I’m not really cold, not really. Not when I have you, when you’re there next to me. You’re warm. The way you tell me when my work is bad, when my choices are bad. You always tell me, but you don’t try and change me, don’t try and fix me. You don’t try and force me, but you tell me when I should try – does this make sense?” He asks, breaks character at the end – or was the character broken a long time ago?
“Keep going.” Is all you answer, and he nods.
He goes off script.
“I hate when you chew gum but I love how you always offer me a piece. You make sure everyone is taken care of, all the time, everyone including yourself. You’re not a doormat, you don’t let people walk all over you. You don’t let me walk all over you, when I don’t realize that I am. You call me out on my bullshit, and it’s shit to hear it, but I need to hear it. I need it. I need you.” He looks up at you, and you realize that he’s gone off page, you realize that the script is fluttering softly against the floor somewhere off stage where he’s tossed it.
Because this is him, laying himself bare to you, opening himself up to you, terrified that you’ll reject him, and you realize that.
“Do you need me, or do you want me?” You ask, reaching a hand out for him.
You help him stand, and now it’s just you, you and Charlie, because you’ve tossed your script down too.
“Why can’t it be both? Who says it can’t be both? It’s both.” Charlie says, so quietly, “It’s both.”
“What happens now?” You ask, licking your lips, unsure of where to go. “In the script?”
You’re both so unsure.
“They kiss.” Charlie replies, and you nod.
You swallow hard, and take a step towards him, towards Charlie.
Your faces are so close, as you slowly, slowly crane your neck up towards him. Your eyes slip closed, and he can feel his heart hammering in his chest, because there is a year’s worth of buildup leading up to this moment.
He wonders if he’s dreaming, if he’s actually passed out in the theater seats somewhere, and this is some sick and twisted figment of his imagination. But you’re so warm in his arms – when did he wind his arms around you? – so comforting and safe, and you’re licking your lips again, but this time it’s to wet them for Charlie, just for Charlie.
“We can stop.” Charlie says, even though it would kill him, it would probably kill him, if you stopped right now.
“I don’t want to.” You shake your head and that act saves him.
He doesn’t wait a moment longer, before leaning down the last remaining inch and meeting your lips in a searing, bruising, longing kiss. And when your lips part for his tongue, when the chorus breaks through his veins and his blood is singing and he’s electric, he’s on fire, he can’t help but let out a big laugh against your lips. He’s relieved, so relieved, elated, soaring, higher and higher as he cups your face, slides his arm around your waist.
“I love you.” You confess when you pull away, needing to breathe. You’re laughing, putting your hands on the side of your head, on your temples, like you’re fighting a headache or a dizzy spell, “I feel sick about it sometimes, how much I love you.”
“How long?” Charlie asks, because he needs to know.
“I…” You’re embarrassed, ashamed.
“How long, (Y/N)?” He asks again, soft, gentle. He’s fucked up so much in his life, he wants to do right by you, wants to be gentle with you.
“Since the very first day. It’s awful, I know. I know it is. I can’t stop thinking about how awful it is, wanting you, a married man. But…but then you kept being so wonderful, you know? And you kept caring, and being kind and funny and a genius and handsome. And you kept talking to me, and we became friends, and I couldn’t snuff out the part of me that wanted you so badly, so it festered and grew and broke my heart. You broke my heart before you could even hold it in your hands, isn’t that pathetic?” You’re crying again, looking up at him with wet eyes.
Charlie feels like he’s high, feels like he’s drunk, like he’s crazy, all at once. He’s never been more thrilled, never been more excited –
“You make me feel alive.” He realizes, and then he’s crying too, because “Fuck, you make me feel like I’ve never felt before, and I know it’s a cliché, but I feel like I’ve never been in love before, not the way I am with you. All of that, all of it was true, even if it wasn’t meant to be, even if they were just lines – things have changed for me, and all of it was true. All of it was for you.”
“What are we going to do?” You ask, and he likes that, likes the way you talk about ‘we,’ (in the present, he still think about it, about how even from this very first night, you’ve always talked about ‘we’), “I don’t know…I don’t know if I can be apart from you, not now. Not after this.”
“I don’t want to, I don’t ever want you far away from me, even now, even this is too far.” Charlie says, and you laugh when he brings you closer and closer, until you’re stepping on his shoes, standing on his feet, chests glued together through your thick woolen sweaters, “Why shouldn’t we both be happy? Why shouldn’t we do something for ourselves, just once, just this one thing?”
“Charlie, I need to know what you mean, exactly what you mean.” You say, with too much hope in your voice.
“I love you. I want you. I need you. I never want to be apart from you, and you feel the same. So why deny ourselves each other, why suffocate this one chance of happiness we might have? I know the play, I know how it ends, what they go through to get there. And it’s worth it, all the bullshit is worth it, (Y/N), if it means we can have one another.” He promises. He hasn’t made a promise like that in years, one he’s hell-bent on keeping.
“We’ll have to be quiet about it, no one can know.” You say, and he just might black out, “We have to do this the least painful way, the way that hurts everyone the least.”
“Nothing really has to change, if we don’t want it to. We can still spend time together, no one has a problem with that. No one suspects anything’s wrong with that. We can spend time together and then some more, and maybe some more, and some more after that too.” He says, rushes to say, lists off the things that he wants, presses his forehead against yours.
“You want me? You really want me?” You ask, going cross-eyed to look at him.
He feels like he’s never been looked at so much in his life.
“I feel like the stupid one, I’ve been so afraid, so scared, for a whole year, that you wouldn’t want me.” He whispers, takes your hand in his and runs his thumb over your knuckles, cups your cheek with his other one, “We could have had this for so long.”
“What happens now?” You ask, but this time, you’re asking for real, asking life, asking him.
And he takes a step back and stares at the ghosts who are silently watching, judging, betting on what he’ll do. And he looks back down at you, and he finds you’ve moved your gaze skyward yourself, searching for something that he doesn’t know.
He doesn’t know anything, not really. But he can try, try to find out. The both of you can, together.
So he looks at you, and tilts your chin to meet his once again, and you smile so wide when he licks his lips and says,
“Now we kiss.”
Tagging some Charlie lovin’ friends! @driverficarchive @adamsnackdriver @dreamboatdriver @kyloxfem @solotriplets @tinyplanet-explorers @candycanes19 @callmehopeless @kylo-renne xsister-serpent @girlyisthatweirdkid phoebewalker04 @stylelovechild @formerly-anonhamster @magikevalynn @ccorleones