(Gothic!Malleus x Punk Skater!Yuu)
Summary: What Malleus thought is that this skater rink was abandoned and only his for peace and quiet away from his attendants, he was wrong to think like that as he meet a rebellious one by sneaking in
P/N: this take place at a modern world, where Malleus is just a victorian goth and Yuu as a skater punk (no magic today sorry)
last note: i used my own Yuu here so if they don't relate to you or your own mc/yuu i apologize i just wanna do a self indulgence fic rn
Malleus have wandered enough
at this point he is pretty sure two of his guards are tearing their heads out looking for him everywhere in the city, not the entire city but maybe places they think Malleus have been
well it's their fault too anyway
what's the point of bringing him out of the mansion to town if he can't even explore freely?
do Lilia really have to take Sebek and Silver with them? he is not a kid anymore he doesn't need that much guards to protect him, he's strong enough to fend for himself maybe far more stronger than his so called guards, so why still bring them here together? Malleus have to deal with the overbearing presence of both Sebek and Silver that everyone they walk past is looking at them and getting a sour face back from Sebek
"the young master certainly dresses like prince!!, truly everyone in town should appreciate our country's attire more!!" Sebek said proudly complimenting his master (loudly)
Malleus don't have a fair argument or choice here since it's the only type of clothing he kinda grew on ever since his childhood and the only type of clothing he had his whole life, his grandmother even said that it's accient as her and tailored very carefully in a treadmill on a very old fashion way
he knows that modern fashion existed he just doesn't bother to care since he is not that into appearances when it came to clothing, and truth to be told the dark black ruffles and laces on the garments he wore is quite comfortable enough and bearable to wear, not to mention he looks quite good on it.
another perks of it was its a good camouflage to sneak into the shadows when he needed some space off his pressuring status and servants that always wanted to be around him, although he have to get deeper into the shadows and saunter around more so they won't get to him quickly. and by strolling around the areas of darkened hollowed streets he found himself here
it looks like what've he read on magazine Lilia have bought before, a rink was it? he can't quite remember the words before the sentence "rink" but it has to do something with rolling and wheels on one's shoes and a hardwood thing a person steps on to move around to. the cement ground tapped on his heeled shoe, some of it echoed to the empty rink
his eyes wandered around the solidarity of the place, graffiti on the rink itself, some dirty smudges on the concrete floor and a almost filled trashcan nearby a almost empty vending machine
this place looked unkempt, who was in charge of it? seeing how tarnished this place is no wonder no one visits here to ride their little hardwood thing and shoes with wheels on the--
his ears picked the sounds of running towards him from the distance
he turned around his head ready to stance at the attacker just as the person jumped as high as they can, gripped the high fence's end and jumped over it
the fence is just tall as him but this person seemed on a smaller height, it's impressive how they've done the jumping around it without any problem with the momentum
"YES-- woah, woah..." they landed on their feet staggering but stood up just fine in a second. they breath out, finally calming down the adrenaline they felt by jumping up the high fence just as they feel another presence near them and turned their head to the another individual who's inside of the rink earlier than them
"BWAAAH THERE'S A PERSON HERE!!" they shrieked making Malleus flinch a bit and irritated at their loud shout their scream hollowed down slowly with the stranger just staring at them with full annoyance
"oh sorry!! i didn't notice you earlier because of how dark your clothes ar--" they put their hands up in defense as they take a great look at the man infront of them
The man himself was dressed in long black robes filled laces and frills as if he's dressed for the renaissance or rococo era. they grin at him
"what's with the weird get-up? you look like you came from the 16 hundreds or something" their tone of voice changed completely now that they've taken a real closer look to him and now giving him a sublemental judging look
Quite rude for a stranger who he had just met
"Oho? are you judging me of my personal clothing of choice? do you not know who are you talking to?" Malleus scoffed at them "what? are you the prince of darkness or something? just kidding" the stranger replied with a playful grin at their face before looking up and down at him again. do this person have no idea that they are talking to so casually?
"i ain't judging you, I just thought it's weird for someone to wear something so....vintage at this kind of hour and century, i thought you're gonna suck peoples blood or mourning somebody's death on their grave" they stated as they eyed the beautiful laced robe covering him "so you are criticizing me" Malleus gave them a offended look
"maybe, i just thought you were a weirdo hanging out on the skater rink late at night and with a goth outfit" anyone would think someone like him would fit on a haunted mansion on a forest than a littered cement rink
"i am here for the peace and quite not for it's aesthetics that would fit my clothes" a moment of awkward silence made the other stranger tense up in guilt "well uh...apologies then" they reply looking the other way for a second before swiftly turning their head back at the tall man
"hey... I'm pretty sure you are also giving me that judgy look judges give to their auditioners, so say, what do you think me when i talked to you?" they asked with an expectant look
he took upon a closer look at the stranger, one would think they are a delinquent student with a first glance, jacket with tattered prints of patches, worn out shoes, in their hands were pair of shoes with wheels on it making clear what are their intention to do at this time and dubious type of metal accessories no parents would allow their children to wear at a school. what a rebellious fashion.
"you're way of clothing is...odd as one might say" they tilted their head in confusion, what is this guy saying?
"huh? this is pretty modern unlike what you wear, are you sheltered or something?" Malleus remained silent at their question, it's not like he's not free to explore other lands it's just that he's not always free from eyes of his attendants or invited to be free together with somebody
"oh sorry you didn't have to talk about it if you don't want to" they're not insensitive, of course some people would just love to be in a solitude place on their own plus with just how you look at this man dresses with his beautiful pale skin or how he interacts with the other persom one would really think he does not look like he is around with people or outside most of times
they once again share a moment of peaceful silence letting the night breeze carry some strands of their hair flowing along with it. the other one decides to finally speak
"hey, do you mind if i skate a bit? that's what i came here for actually" they lift their hand with the strings of their roller skates and shoe dangling within it
"no, do as you please" Malleus stated letting them beam at him as they took off the worn out shoes they wore earlier then put on the one with wheels on it, they had stanced properly to seal their balance as Malleus watch them roll down the circled floor. Malleus have seen rough yet eye catching movements of them, well they seem to be having fun with their own as they roll around the whole rink, he had never seen such a free spirit as them, they had the most bright smile expressed on their face. he admired that.
after a few minutes of skating more they roll back to the ridge of the rink, huffing and panting with sweat dripping at their temples and forehead "so how'd i do?" they pant one last time before looking at him in the eyes, they look brighter from before they came here as if all the fatigue from their body is gone even though they have moved alot even more
"not bad i can say that" he chuckled, their performance is a roughed diamond but it's not like he can do any better, he's also maybe way too tall to do this kind of hobby.
They crouch down reaching to untie to roller skates and remove it off their foot "hey, i have one question for you, why are you here again? " their barefoot stepped on the cold ground to walk over to him and their discarded worned out shoes besides him
"i have said my own reasons, i am here for the solemnity of this place. nothing else than that" Malleus stated as his eyes followed their barefooted figure tapping the cement ground with small taps
"well my reason would be the same as you, my mom would kill me if she finds out i snuck out again to skate alone here but sometimes i just need to be on my own, you know what I'm saying?" they crouch once again to pick up their shoes and putting it on without hassle
upon with his height the crouching person looked much more smaller than before like a small bunny looking at ground as if it's interesting "hmm yes i do, i barely get any silence after all" cue to Sebek always following him nd announcing his every arrival at any place "but aren't you afraid that you might be in danger? it is quite late for a vunerable thing like you out alone at this kind of place" his deep voice felt like it wants to eat you out on fear, is he trying to scare them or something?
they scoff "you're here, why would it be dangerous?" they put the other sneaker in and tied it up in a knot "and if you are the danger, you could've just murdered me with a dagger 20 minutes ago but you didn't so.." they stood up, knocking off the dust and dirt on their clothing from the previous skating session and climbing the rusty metal fence earlier
he chuckled "how funny and forward towards me you are for a normal civilian, what do you say about giving me your name?" the man is obviously enamoured by them and it shows, he hopes that they are willing enough to give their name to him
"the name's Yuu, and what should i call the goth mister? for remembering purposes" they smirk at him waiting for his reply "You've entertained me well enough, therefore i shall give you a premission to call me anything you want to but i cannot guarantee what might happen to you if you do" he slip out a seemingly evillous grin
"riiiiight...weirdo." they mumble before passing by him and climbing on the fence again making it clang with the metal barrier, they jumped off once again to the other side opposite of Malleus "i gotta go now man, I'll see you never or soon if you decide to come back here"
"Oh by the way!! this is private property of a old man so i recommend you leave as soon as you can before he gets here!!" they yell at him and then run further away as fast as they could till he cannot see them anymore. he mumbled their name one last time before smiling to himself, what a curios little beastie they are
Yuu: ayo it's me and my gothic victorian boyfriend i pulled by roller skating, say hi gothic victorian boyfriend
Yuu: meet my boyfriend
Their Mom: Yuu... your boyfriend barely fits through the door, you're introducing him at our entrance hallway
Yuu: yeah so anyways we met at that rink you forbid me from going to
a/n: I LOVE FIRST MEETINGS SO MUCH BUT I SWEAR I WASNT OVERUSING IT, LOOK YUU HERE IS THE ONE WHO LEFT FIRST!! ITS DIFFERENT I SWEARR!! but also i apologize for not posting that much fics lately cuz of school stuff and my laziness
HIS COMPLETE DEVOTION. malleus draconia
Synopsis: "Don't touch me! I have a lover!" - After accidentally getting hit in the head with a powerful spell, Malleus is left delirious and confused. You try to help him but he doesn't seem to recognize you.
Character/s: Malleus Draconia x GN! Reader
Tags: Fluff, Established relationship, Malleus is a loyal dragon, Reader is part of the gargoyle appreciation club, Mentions of nausea, He keeps a locket of you aww
A/N: This prompt/idea was requested by a friend!
WordCount: 800+ | 💌Masterlist | PART II HERE
Green lightning began to strike and forsake the grey sky. Every student on campus could hear the wind howling through the thick dripping rain, a sinking feeling of dread permanating through the atmosphere.
The aged concrete walls shook from a shrill scream, the anguished cry echoing out through the hundred chambers in the castle.
"YOUNG MASTER!" Sebek drove his fingers into his scalp, screaming as thick tears dribbled down his flushed face. From his reaction, you'd think he was the one who got hurt instead.
Lilia tutted and carefully inspected Malleus' head. The young prince was laying on the ground writhing in pain. Lillia pressed his thumb against the dragon's temple, examining the Fae's reaction.
Sebek and Silver surrounded the two, ensuring that no one could get past them. Malleus was in a vulnerable state right now, he had to be protected at all costs.
"The spell was quite powerful however it's not serious. Other than some temporary mental confusion, he should be fine." Lilia muttered, helping Malleus stand up. The young prince stumbled around for a bit, almost as if he was intoxicated.
"Malleus!" You threw the doors to the dorm open, running over to the group. It's only when you got closer did you notice your lover's spinning eyes, glazed over as he blinks at the blank concrete floors. Worried out of your mind, you rushed over to him.
"Tsunotarou! I heard what happened…are you okay?" The fae appeared a little puzzled. You stood before him and he fixed his gaze on you, confused and...disgusted?
With a hint of hesitance, you reached your hands up to cup his cheeks. Only to gasp when Malleus glowered and grasped onto your wrists, ripping your hands off of his face.
Silence fell over the room as he dropped his grip on your arms, allowing them to hang limply by your sides. Everyone gawked at Malleus as if he had just grown two heads.
Malleus? Malleus rejected your affection? The Malleus who waits outside your dorm an hour before classes just to walk you to school? The Malleus who once caused a week-long storm just because he couldn't sit next to you in class? Your Malleus?
You felt your heart sink. They say drunk words were sober thoughts. Did Malleus secretly despise you?
"Listen here-" Malleus snarled, his unfocused eyes flashing a luminous emerald green. The radiance and illumination hypnotizes you for a while. A kaleidoscope of green and blue swirling around the gems that were his eyes.
"No matter how alluring you look-you can't tempt me. I-" Malleus lurched forward, nearly falling over. You ran to catch him but he pushed you away, stepping back blindly. He raised a finger at you. "I-I already have a lover!"
"Yes-That's…me?" You blinked, confused out of your mind.
Malleus only scoffs at you, shakily taking a few steps towards the entrance. It was clear that his head still shook and ached from the spell's blow. Sebek was quick to stop him, holding Malleus steady. "Young Master! Where are you going?!"
"To my-my treasure. My darling prefect." Malleus slurred, leaning against Sebek for support. He continued his rambling. "It's Thursday- We have a club meeting."
"Tsuno-I mean-Malleus, today is Tuesday." You piped up, pressing a hand against his back. With shaky legs, he pushed Sebek off and turned to glare at you.
"Silence. It is not."
Lilia laughs hysterically, doubling over and grabbing onto his knees. Oh, this was comedy gold for him. Shaking his head at his father, Silver strode up to Malleus and placed his hand on the young prince's shoulder.
"Malleus, you're still delirious. Why don't you sit down."
Both Silver and Sebek started to guide the woozy fae onto the couch. You followed suit, taking a pillow and placing it under his head. He turned to face you, his head spinning, a loopy snarl and glare on his face.
"I...I already told you- I have a lover." He groans into his hands, nausea washing over him like waves.
The fae begins frantically rummaging through his pocket. He yanks out a little locket in the form of a heart, holding it up for you to look at. He hands it to you with an arrogant smirk on his face.
"O-Oh?"Gently taking it into your hands, you flipped the metal cover over to see a picture of you inside.
It was a photo from your very first anniversary. You were wearing a flower crown made with roses Malleus grew himself, it was one of the many gifts he gave you that day.
Though only your head and neck could be seen in the picture since his coat had almost completely engulfed you. It was a chilly day and Malleus graciously lent you his coat after you had forgotten to wear one.
You stared at the photo fondly, shutting it close before handing the necklace back to the fae.
"Your partner must be lovely." You whisper softly and Malleus sighs, lolling his head back to stare at the ceiling lovingly.
"Oh. They are much more than that."
PART II | Likes and Reblogs are greatly appreciated and really motivating on my end!
Monster Mayhem: Donkeys & Dragons
Gender Neutral Reader x Malleus Draconia
Word Count: 3.0k
Summary: In which your friends are idiots who think gallivanting around a haunted castle surrounded by lava is a great idea. And then there's a dragon.
ie. Or, I watched Shrek this afternoon and could not stop thinking about the memes of the Prefect being Donkey and Malleus as the Dragon.
[PART 1] [PART 2] [PART 3] [PART 4] [EPILOGUE]
‘Treasure beyond your wildest dreams!’ Ace said.
‘Knowledge long since lost to time!’ Deuce corrected.
‘Yeah, okay, but what is it,’ you asked.
And neither of them had an answer.
Abandoned castles suspended over a sea of bubbling lava were not your preferred holiday destination. You’d told Ace this several times. You’d begged, pleaded, to please just be normal for once. But noooo. Both the snarky, ginger, bastard and the other half of his singular brain cell had apparently decided that suicide ala boiling rocks sounded like a perfectly lovely plan for your Saturday evening.
“I’m just saying,” you huffed as the rope bridge swung worryingly beneath your feet, “taverns are a thing. Faires. Market runs. Casual side quests that won’t wind up with us being flambeed alive.”
“But there’s treasure!” Ace complained, the muddled light off the lava below illuminating his pout in a way that made it look especially punchable. “I heard there’s this really awesome magical sword! Or maybe it was a shield or something—”
“Or something,” you grit out. “What if it’s a book, huh? You can’t even read.”
“We can try!” Deuce returned, a spark of that familiar determination zipping through his blue eyes.
“Or we can sell it,” Ace said, which was certainly the more likely option of the two.
One of the rickety, wooden, slats cracked beneath the low heel of your boot and tumbled down into the lava below. Maybe it hit the gurgling pool of death with a hiss, or a whump, or some other cool sound. But all you could hear was the ringing in your ears.
“Oh my god. I’m going to die.”
“I mean, maybe,” Ace shrugged. “But at least you’ll have a cool new sword propped up at your grave or something.”
You managed to make it all the way to the other side of the horrible death bridge without plummeting to your doom. Except now you were standing at the foot an equally horrifying castle. It was massive—grand on a scale that seemed entirely impossible for something constructed in the heart of a volcano. Its dozens of ebony spires clawed at the sky. The walls crawled with grey ivy and thickets of thorns so dense that you couldn’t see even the barest hint of brick beneath. It looked evil in the way that cursed tombs felt evil—eternal, and still, and oppressive. Like a creature in its own right rather than just an agglomeration of black stone.
Ace drew his sword and Deuce readied his axe. You sighed and plucked at the strings of your stupid fucking lute, and wished once more that you’d had the foresight all those moons ago to take the cushy internship position Lord Crewel had tried to offer you. But, no. You’d wanted to be an adventurer.
The massive double doors of the entrance swung open with an eerie groan. A pair of stern looking gargoyles stood guard as the three of you cautiously made your way into the castle. You swore you could feel their eyes following you—that you’d seen them flex jagged claws into their stone perches in an aborted attempt to dive after you.
The inside of the looming fortress was no more welcoming than out. Dark, emerald, stained glass windows lined the walls—smothering any of the warmer light from the volcano and tinting the entire hall a sickly green-grey. The stone floors and walls were elaborately carved with the faded stories of dynasties long since passed, but what had once surely been immaculate craftsmanship had shifted and cracked with age—crushing floors into tight slopes and littering already narrow walkways with heavy debris.
“We just have to find the tallest tower,” Ace hummed, swiping at a few dangling trails of thorns with the blunted edge of his blade. “And then the highest room in that.”
“The treasure is never in the highest room in the tallest tower,” you complained. “You just heard that in a drinking song once.”
“Is that true?” Deuce frowned, looking terribly betrayed.
“No way!” Ace snipped. “I told you! An old crone read my fortune in her bone dice, and she said to always check the highest room in the tallest tower! Because that’s where I’d find my greatest treasure!”
“Maybe the greatest treasure is the friends we’ve made along the way?” Deuce suggested helpfully.
So you split off from a grouchy Ace and dejected Deuce to try and find some stairs. Every room in this stupid castle was swimming in so many shadows that you could hardly tell right from left, let alone if there were any kinds of secret doors or passageways that may lead to an equally secret tower. The chamber you’d found yourself in now was gigantic, and each tentative step you took echoed discordantly through the ashy gloom. You kicked miserably at a loose rock and it skittered off into the darkness with a dull thunk. And then something… odd, began to happen. That darkness began to move—to rise and unfurl like a great set of wings on a beast. And—oh. Oh no.
“Would you look at that,” Ace whistled under his breath, neck craned all the way back as he squinted at what was most definitely the tallest of all the towers this creepy castle had to offer. “Guess what, nonbelievers. I found the—”
Whoosh went the great swathe of emerald fire as it exploded down the barren hallway and nipped at your heels. You dove out into the open courtyard just in time to avoid being roasted alive, and the gargantuan monster behind you let out a roar fit to shake the earth. A quick tuck-and-roll left you crouched behind a fallen pillar, and the dragon’s bright, green, glower turned on you and your garbage hiding spot with a rumbling snarl. Its rows of sharp, white, teeth closing just above your head—missing its mark by barely a hair’s width.
“Gotcha!” Deuce snarled, his armored fists dragging the dragon away by its tail. Or, well, tried to. Because the dragon was a hundred feet long at least, and your blue haired friend probably looked like nothing more than a pesky rat darting between its feet. It turned and snapped at him irritably, taking a great, big, step forward in a bid to get a firmer stance to attack. You threw yourself in the other direction to avoid being trampled.
“Go!” Ace called, charging in from the other side. “Quick!”
Because at the end of the day, they were still both your brave, tanky, warrior, friends. And you were just a very, very, squishy bard who really would not fare well against a particularly motivated goose, let alone a dragon. So you skidded through the rubble and onto your feet, and started to sprint back into the castle’s halls—hoping maybe you’d be able to find a bit more cover.
There was a great clatter, and both Ace and Deuce yelped. You looked back hurriedly to see the pair of them clutching onto the dragon’s tail for dear life as it whipped them back and forth through the ash and debris cluttering the ground. With one, final, great, sweep, the dragon pitched them into the air and sent them careening through the roof of that ‘tallest tower.’ You muttered a hasty incantation and the sparkling outlines of soft feathers danced along your fingers. You hoped you weren’t too far. You were probably too goddamn far. But you hummed frantically under your breath nonetheless and entreated your middling magic to give them a soft landing.
And then there was another wave of green hellfire raining down over your head and you turned and ran.
Fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck—
Even if you’d been a champion sprinter, there was little good it would have done you against a beast whose stride was longer than you were tall. You made it back into some hall or other, and into another cavernous room, and then you were pinned into a corner—the dragon looming over you like a vengeful wraith come to take its due.
It was gigantic. Probably the biggest creature you’d ever seen. And it was sleek—all lithe muscle and glossy rows of black scales that glittered oddly in the dull, grey, light. Its wings spread wide behind it, spanning the entirety of the vast chamber. They looked like the sort of wings that could stir up a hurricane. The curling horns atop its head seemed sharp enough to gore a man or twenty, and the purple crests lining its skull were tapered down flat in a way that reminded you a bit deliriously of a pissy cat pinning its ears back before it swatted at you.
Its lips curled back over pointed canines as it snarled at you, and you were showered in a swathe of hot sparks.
“Oh, what large teeth you have,” you squeaked, and when the dragon dipped closer to bellow into your face, your reeled back with a splutter. “I—I mean white, sparkling, teeth!” you rattled, nearly incoherent. The dragon’s snout twitched away, almost like you’d startled it. “I mean, I’m sure you hear this all the time from your food, but—wow! Just! Very lovely! Definitely the prettiest smile I’ll ever be eaten by!”
Slowly it lowered its great head, and you could see the neon glare from its narrowed eyes.
“Not that you have to eat me,” you added hurriedly, hoping to whatever Gods could hear you that your smart mouth could finally be useful for more than just talking circles around assholes in bars or weaseling your friends out of shitty contracts. “I’d very much like not to be eaten. But all the same, we did intrude in your home—and it’s definitely a very nice home—so I’d totally get it. And I guess if I did have to die today, knowing that my life would be in the hands of something so magnificent is certainly reassuring.”
The dragon seemed to preen a bit at that. You could see the sharp crests beneath its horns soften as tension bled from the beast’s posture. It ducked in close again, and this time you felt a sharp pull of air rush past your cheeks as it sniffed you. Its nostrils were the size your head—bigger even, maybe. You didn’t want to think about it, but the dry heat of its breath puffing into your face made the entire thing a bit hard to ignore.
“Did I mention what a charming home you have?” you rambled on. “Very aesthetic. The gargoyles at the gate were a lovely touch.”
The dragon made a low, warbling, noise in its throat that wasn’t quite a growl, but wasn’t particularly… reassuring, either. It made the hair on the back of your neck stand on end.
It ducked away—not far, just enough to reach one of the large, carved, walls at the outskirts of the room. Its long neck slithered out before pausing pointedly over an archway. It took you a long moment to realize it was gesturing to something. Another gargoyle from the looks of things—this one almost entirely crumbled away under the strains of time. You could just barely make out the shape of its square jaw and taloned fingers.
You nodded so hard you nearly gave yourself whiplash.
“Yes! I see! Very beautiful! Such fine craftsmanship!”
The dragon cooed at you. Swear on your life and all the money in your back packet. An actual, honest to God, coo. Fuck, maybe you’d managed to charm your way out of imminent dismemberment and death after all.
It ambled closer once again, a curiosity lighting its eyes and warming those neon irises into something that was less poisonous-hell-fire and more mellow-evening-in-the-forest.
Amidst all the rippling waves of ebony scales, your eyes caught on the smallest smear of crimson. Just a touch of red—right along the spikes of its tail. Carefully, cautiously, slower than molasses, you stepped forward with your hands raised. You whispered a handful of familiar words under your breath and your palms glowed fuzzy and blue. Dragons were supposed to be inherently magical, right? So this one would certainly understand that the string of syllables you’d babbled out were good, and helpful, and not at all a provocation. The dragon was looking down at you with lidded eyes, its gaze a bit unfocused. You gulped.
“I’m sorry my friends messed with your tail,” you apologized, gingerly holding your fingers out to hover over the abrasions without actually touching. “They were just trying to protect me. If—if that makes it any better.” The minuscule wound began to knit itself back together neatly beneath the pulses of your magic. “I do tend to need a lot of protecting—I’m not much a warrior, if that wasn’t completely obvious by the everything about me—so I can’t really blame them for being a bit gung-ho about it.”
After a moment or two, the scratches had faded back into solid, matte, black and you drew back with a content hum.
“There! All fixed!” You gave your most winning smile. Please don’t eat me, your brain chanted on endless repeat. Please don’t eat me please don’t eat me please don’t eat me—
The dragon reared back and settled on its haunches with another heavy puff of sweltering breath. You could feel the heat of it prickling all the way up your arms. After a long, long, moment of silent consideration, the dragon leaned forward again and rumbled deep in its chest. When you only stood there, properly petrified, it huffed again and bumped its nose against your sternum, nearly toppling you over.
“I don’t—” you started, nervous. “I’m sorry. I don’t really get what you’re trying to say.”
With another sigh that sounded entirely too put upon, the dragon lowered its great head. The air itself seemed to grow heavy against your shoulders, and you could taste the cloying bitterness of strong magics on the back of your tongue. Black miasma oozed from beneath the dragon’s talons and melted along its scales. The caustic scent of ash and petrichor burned along your nostrils, and you had to pinch your eyes shut and cover your nose to keep from coughing. You managed to sneak a peek past your fingers just in time to watch the shadowed outline of the beast collapse. And out of that puddle of black goo emerged a man. He was tall and lithe, just as the dragon had been, with glowing green eyes that were terribly familiar. They were framed with thick, dark, lashes and sat perfectly on a face that was nearly too handsome to be human (well, it really wasn’t human you supposed, so that little tidbit probably accounted for said inhuman beauty well enough). Recognizable eyes and stature or no, the curling horns atop his head would have sealed the deal plenty well enough on their own.
He shook off the shadows twining around his ankles with a lazy twist of the hand and then turned to you with a curious little hum.
And holy fuck Mister Dragon apparently had no sense of shame, or maybe just no qualms about social niceties and practicalities, because his human self was wearing about just as many clothes as his lizard form had been.
You squeezed your eyes shut with a squeak, and then double covered them with your hands for good measure.
A chuckle rolled through the air—as dark and pleasantly rich as the finest of chocolates. And then there was a clawed finger beneath your chin, tilting your head back, and back, and back until you were at least half-way sure it would probably be safe to open your eyes again without infringing on his decency.
“You are fascinating, Child of Man,” it—he—hummed, low in his throat. His thumb dragged down to hook beneath the curve of your jaw and support the finger tucked up under your chin. “And it’s been so, very, long since I’ve been fascinated by anything.”
“Uh,” you replied, like a perfectly functional human being.
The dragon’s lips curled up over his pointed teeth—still just as sharp and white as they had been when he’d been so much bigger and scalier.
“I think I’d like to keep you,” he said with a nod to himself, as casually as one may talk about picking up extra groceries from the market.
“Uh,” you said again.
“You did mention that you needed protecting,” he continued, tapping a clawed finger against his own chin. The small smile quirking his lips twisted into something smug. “And that is certainly something at which I would excel.”
Your head was swimming.
“I—I mean. I’m honored that you—that… you—” You couldn’t even think the words, let alone get them past your brain and out of your mouth. You cleared your throat and fought to keep your eyes level with his clavicle and nowhere else. “D-Don’t you think you’re moving a bit fast?” you laughed nervously. “I mean, I’m sure my friends will probably be on their way back down soon—and—I mean, we haven’t even introduced ourselves yet. I don’t even know your name.”
He blinked, slow and serpentine.
“Oh. I suppose you wouldn’t.” He canted his head to the side, long strands of that inky black hair of his spilling across his shoulder. An amused sort of grin worked its way along his mouth. “Dragons are not keen to give out our true names so readily, but you seem like a clever one. Tell me—what do you think I’m called then, hmm?”
You glanced up quickly at the horns atop his head and couldn’t help yourself.
He let out a bark of laughter that seemed to shake the walls.
“Oh,” he trilled, looking positively delighted. The hand not curled beneath your chin reached down to snag your own, and he brought your wrist up to his lips. You could feel the imprints of his canines against the soft skin there. “I’ll definitely be keeping you.”