so some fun facts about working in carpentry (from someone in the field) that probably no one wants but could be fun for writing about julia and mags with:
it is so so important to maintain a positive relationship with your clients and that’s probably why mags is so proud of his rustic hospitality and wants to use it at every corner because your relationships and reputation is half the job
for one you get returning clients and tends to be the best and most reliable source of income and you also usually will end up getting gifts from them too which is, sweet,
if they’re doing pretty well off during a year i’m almost certain that they offer discounts for their services for the poorer members of raven’s roost, mangus in particular has a “doggy discount” that if they own a dog and they let it work with him they get a good discount
both of them (+plus stephen) are probably ambidextrous to a degree as when working on repeat projects, you tend to get really tired and sore and continue working until that arm gives out and then switch to the other to be able to continue working
going with that, you get paid by commission or project usually and so hypothetically you could pick up as many as possible (or as many as the union will allow) and probably will do that a couple times and you could literally blow out your entire body but be set for the year in a couple weeks
going with the stress on the body, the physical labor definitely means that they have bad knees and probably a bad arm as well not to mention if there is a lot of heavy lifting you can get multiple hairpin fractures along your spine and legs causing intense pain that cannot be treated
also if they’re working with saws (which i’m pretty sure trav did say were in the pocket workshop) then i have no idea why mags reacted so badly to losing a finger because everyone i have ever worked with has or has almost cut off their finger once a week
also you get a very high tolerance for pain (which probably helps mags as being a sword for hirer) like i have literally sliced my entire forearm open and just wrapped it up and continued working
since raven’s roost has a carpentry district, that most likely means that they have a lumber sister town that provides all of the resources
and again, going with the importance of rustic hospitality, if you’re friends with the lumber providers then you will get first pick on the quality wood and quality literally will save you days of work
if there’s a bad harvest one year then it will fucking suck because people don’t stop needing furniture or buildings and you as the carpenter have to pick up the slack for the shitty warped wood and most projects will take about double the time
woodworking is a skill trade and has to be learned over years so most likely by the time mags came along julia was already extremely skilled and is able to do commissions and bids on her own and has her own reputation in ravens roost (which…tbh mags could have very well apprenticed under her)
it is extremely hard to go from apprenticing one carpenter to another because even the basics get muddled with your own style to the point where most people measure in different ways and cutting something wrong (especially cutting it short) will waste so much material thus mags being brand new to apprenticing under stephen probably takes years while jules just laughs each time he fucks up a leg of a chair
I find the letter at the foot of my bed when I wake
I don’t know exactly
how to say this
I’ve been sitting
here staring at the blank page for ten minutes
Why did you have
to be the Mage’s Heir?
I wish this
didn’t have to be so hard to say
Crowley, this is
together all this time and
Bet you thought I
I don’t hate you
I can’t even
explain what I
Why did we have
to be enemies?
I love you Simon
He finds me outside the dining hall, and when he
storms towards me I see the letter in his hand.
I brace myself.
“When did you even write this?” I begin.
looks taken aback. “What does that have
to do with anything?”
why did you have to write it today?”
April Fool’s Day, Snow,” he tells me, “or did you forget already?”
just it,” I say, my voice getting louder.
“Why would you write something like this on a day where it could be a
exactly that reason.”
what am I supposed to think?”
gives me a look. “Think whatever you
want, Snow,” he shrugs, “I’ve made my move, just focus on making yours.”
glare up at him a second longer. His
eyes are gray and deep and almost sad.
mouth is right there, and his lips
look soft like his hair.
wonder if he’s noticed where I’m looking.
I wonder if he’ll reach up…
I’ll have to reach down…
I’m even brave enough…
I’m not brave enough.
step back while I still can, before I’ve been staring at his mouth too long or
before one of us closes the distance.
wish I had some sort of parting phrase, something more eloquent than “fuck
you”, but I don’t.
turn and walk away, feeling his eyes bore into my back, feeling that same
magnetic tension I’d felt when I’d left him to cry away his own nightmares.
wait until I’m around the corner before I start running.
Maybe a love letter is a lame April Fool’s Day prank,
but when else am I supposed to tell him?
When else would he take it with a grain of salt?
he didn’t take it with a grain of salt, even today.
hope it makes him hate me. I hope he
burns it in front of me. I hope he makes
me burn it with my own fire.
wish he would just break my heart and leave it at that.
the only thing worse than knowing he hates me is not knowing.
I could have kissed him.
I wanted to kiss him.
outside when I run out of breath and I lean against an ivy-covered wall before
pulling my phone out of my pocket and dialing Penny’s number.
Simon, what’s up?”
squeeze my eyes shut. “You’ve got to
almost kissed Baz.”
I find Simon sitting on the ground against a wall, and
the grass is wet but I join him anyway and wait for him to speak.
wrong with me, Penny?”
shoot him a look. “Nothing’s wrong with you, Simon,” I assure him,
“you’re just scared.”
I hate him, right?”
you have to ask me, then you probably don’t.”
I must,” he insists, “I always have.”
is this even coming from?” I ask. He
hands me a folded slip of paper. A
letter, and even though it’s not signed, it’s clear who wrote it.
was on my bed this morning.”
do realize this is probably a prank, right?”
that’s just it,” he sits forward urgently, “I can’t tell.”
I tell him firmly, “if he does feel this way, then what better day to tell you
than on a day you might not realize it’s true?”
why wouldn’t he want me to realize?”
I don’t know,” I scoff, “maybe because you’ve been mortal enemies your whole
life and he’s supposed to kill you and it would be bad enough if he thought you
hated him but even worse if you didn’t?”
doesn’t respond, weighing the possibility in his mind.
almost kissed whom?”
shakes his head. “I’m not really sure
you want to kiss him?”
a long moment before he gives the slightest of nods. “Why would I want that, Penny?”
a hand on his knee. “Oh, Si,” I murmur
sympathetically, “you know why.”
I only go to the room for a minute after lunch to grab
a jacket, but when I get there, there’s a note on my bed.
I love you too.
Of course I
do. How could I have doubted for a
second that I did?
I avoid him for the rest of the day, spending most of
it wandering the catacombs and when that gets boring, the Wavering Wood. I climb to the top of the highest tree I can
find and close my eyes, trying to remember how it felt yesterday.
know if I should be reading into the note or not, but that’s probably my own
fault. I did it to him, so he did it to
me, all on the one day of the year dedicated to practical jokes.
neither of us have actually said April
wait as long as I can to return to our room for the night, and by then it’s
dark already. Simon doesn’t appear to
have come up yet, but the window is open, so he must have been here since I
found his note.
stare at the window, something dark and long swoops through the outside air
venture closer, and it swings by again, but this time I see what it is. A dragon’s tail.
of me wants to yank it hard and send him tumbling (his wings would save him
anyway, no harm done), but I just poke my head out the window and find Simon on
the roof, his tail dangling over the edge.
in Merlin’s name are you doing up there?”
out I like high places,” he replies without looking at me. I should go back inside (I don’t have
anything else to say), but the sky is clear tonight and the moon is hitting his
curls in a new way and I could study them for hours.
are you looking at?” he asks when he catches me staring.
shake myself out of my trance. “Nothing,”
I say, ducking to retreat back in.
should come up.”
here, it’s a great view.”
can see just fine from here, Snow.”
but…” he trails off, still gazing out over the grounds, “I wanted to talk to
you about something.”
can come down if you want to talk to me.”
the fun in that?” He shoots me a shy
smile like he’s not sure if it’s allowed.
“Seriously, just get out here.”
peer over the windowsill to the moat. “I’ll
you won’t,” Simon scoffs, “I’ve seen you climb.”
won’t look at me again but I can tell he’s not going to take no for an answer.
look anywhere but down or at him as I scramble over the sill and up onto the
roof, not taking the offered hand but not slapping it away either as I might
have done yesterday.
almost-kiss and you’d think the world was turned upside-down.
settle into place beside him, anchoring my feet so I won’t slide down the
angled roof. It’s really not the most
comfortable position, and the night air is colder up here, but now that I’m here
I can see what he was talking about. The
Wood is like a quilt draped over the land and the hills roll like waves into
the distance. “Not a bad view,” I
would be a shame if I were to push you off the roof right now.”
should, just to prove him wrong.
Yesterday I might have.
haven’t we teamed up before?”
give a dark laugh. “It might have
something to do with being mortal enemies.”
that what we are?”
it’s no secret that the Old Families want me to kill you.”
why haven’t you?”
you getting impatient, Snow?”
had every opportunity, but even the times that you have legitimately tried, you’ve
ended up saving me.”
make a note to stop doing that.”
doubt we’d make a very good team, Snow,” I chuckle quietly.
looks genuinely curious. “Why not?”
think there has to be a certain level of trust in a team.”
raise an incredulous eyebrow at him. “I
sold you out to a goblin yesterday,
and now you trust me?”
seems that way.”
that’s the reason we wouldn’t make a good team, because of your horrible
just laughs. “You weren’t actually trying to kill me, and besides,
look how it turned out.”
mind jumps straight to the almost-kiss at the top of the tree and I’m suddenly
grateful for the darkness hiding my blush.
“What do you mean?”
killing that goblin,” he practically gushes, “that was incredible!”
shrug. “Goblins are stupid, it wasn’t
Imagine if we’d teamed up years ago, the Insidious Humdrum would be long
gone by now.”
boring our lives would be.”
wouldn’t have to be enemies.”
look down at my legs. “We’d still have
to be enemies.”
could be unlikely friends.”
glances at me carefully. “Maybe not,” he
agrees after a pause.
he could be alright with friends, but
I don’t know if I ever could.
Fuck the Families. Fuck the Mage. Fuck the roles we’ve been given and the parts
we have to play. Fuck it all. I just want you, Simon Snow.
did you have to write that letter today?”
know if I’m shivering from the cold or the question, or both. “I’ve already told you why.”
couldn’t you have written it tomorrow?”
cast him a sideways glance. “You know
that April Fool’s Day isn’t the one designated day of the year that I’m able to
lie to you, right? Saying it any other
day wouldn’t make it true.”
it were true,” he says slowly, “today
would be the perfect day to say it without the risk of being taken seriously,
shrug carefully. “I suppose.”
looks me right in the eye. “Did you mean
hold his gaze. “Why are you expecting
I trust you.”
right, I’d forgotten.”
doesn’t matter what I say,” I sigh, “you won’t believe me.” It’s the grave I’ve dug myself.
answer, just meet his eyes.
you ever consider,” he murmurs, “even for a moment, the possibility that your
letter would mean something to me?”
speak, I can’t.
that maybe my note wasn’t a prank?”
gulp. “The thought crossed my mind, but
it was too ridiculous to entertain.”
shifts fractionally closer but I can already feel the energy start to crackle
between us. “It’s not that ridiculous.”
are you saying?”
eyes are dark like indigo, his hair framed by the moon behind him. “I think…”
breathe as I wait for him to finish.
I don’t know if I can say it. Writing it down is one thing, but saying it
face-to-face, and this close…
eyes are silver, illuminated by the moon behind me.
“Do you know why I woke you from the nightmares?” he
says suddenly, and I want to slap him for changing the subject. (And then kiss his cheek.) (And then kiss his mouth.)
I was keeping you from your beauty rest?”
you were scared, and… it hurt me to
see you hurting like that.”
won’t look at me again, and I want to take his chin in my hand and make him
meet my eye, but I stay still and wait.
you had the nightmares,” he eventually continues, “you didn’t just say no a lot.”
already know where this is going. “What
else did I say?”
Figures. “I was afraid of that,” I nod.
ask what you were dreaming about?”
takes a long time for me to answer. “I
had to kill you.”
the thought brings tears to my eyes.
don’t have to…”
“Yes. I did.”
He’s silent as I take a ragged breath.
“That’s why it’s my worst nightmare.
I know I’ve been told all my life that I have to kill you, but if it
ever really came to it, I want to think that I’d be brave enough to
refuse. But in my nightmares, I always give in. Sometimes you kill me at the same time, and
then at least I know I won’t have to carry on living in a world without you…”
“After I woke
you,” he says a minute later, his voice getting quieter and quieter, “I hated
myself for what I’d done to you. I
wanted to comfort you, to hold you until you fell asleep again, but I was too
afraid. When I walked away, it was like
someone was ripping a piece out of me, and then I hated myself even more. I thought the feeling would go away, but it
didn’t.” He looks me in the eye, and he
looks terrified. “It still hasn’t.”
He’s only inches
away. There’s tears in his eyes to match
“I think…” Simon moves
even closer, “I think I meant what I wrote.”
My heart goes
quiet, but I’ve never felt more alive.
“I know,” I whisper, “that I meant what I
everything in me right now not to fall against him.
I don’t miss his
eyes as they flicker to my mouth and back up.
When he speaks it’s less than a breath.
He takes a handful
of my shirt and pulls me down to him.
Baz tastes like
citrus and wood smoke and I’m immediately lost in the scent. His mouth is softer than I could have imagined
and I want to be gentle, to move slowly, but I can’t stop myself from opening
his mouth with mine. I feel his sigh
vibrate against my chin as I deepen the kiss and oh, it’s not enough. I want
to hear every sound he has, to explore every inch of him, to stay here forever discovering. I know right now that I’ll never get enough.
Simon kisses me
like he’s starving, like he can’t get enough, yet he’s gentle. His mouth is slow and deep, and my hand is in
his curls before I even know what I’m doing, angling his head and moving slow,
like we have nothing but time. The tears
are spilling over from my eyes and I can feel the moisture of his own tears on
his cheeks, but we’re both kissing through our grins, giddy and desperate for
from him is like pulling the plug on life support, but he stays no more than a
“Are you shaking?”
“It’s cold up
here, Simon,” he murmurs back. “Not
everyone has an internal furnace like you apparently do.”
I grin and wrap
my wings around the two of us. “Call me
He presses a gentle
kiss to my mouth. “Simon,” he breathes,
and I can’t stop myself from pulling him in again.
Baz keeps whispering
my name between kisses, and I keep falling more and more in love with him.