The tower in major arcana tarot represents change, disaster, and upheaval, all of which reflect Lyanna as she was kidnapped and taken to the Tower of Joy at age 16 by Rhaegar Targaryen. Her disappearance led to a war, to her death at a young age, and ultimately to a change to the monarchy, bringing Robert Baratheon to the throne.
My mom’s cat had kittens and they’re sooooo cuuuteeee, they’re a week old in this pic and they try and hiss if you touch them without mom around, but all that comes out is this little KHCK sound and they jump a little bit.
There isn’t much left of their previous
lives, merely broken images and distorted memories, feverish flashes that
dominate the darkest nights, proving it undeniable, at least to them, that it
Finding one another in this new life, this
new world, unmarred by the footprints of giants, had been a blessing, as if
some meaning had come from childhoods riddled with nightmares.
Erwin tries to remember.
Levi tries to forget.
Every now and again, this opposition of
ideals threatens to upset the once easy balance between them both. Erwin does
all he can to locate those once considered his closest allies, his head stuck
in books in the late hours, trying to find just a semblance of proof of the
life that was once theirs which now seems just a distant memory.
Levi remembers so much more than Erwin, and
he has only ever considered it a curse. What he would give to wipe his mind
clean. The running montage of teeth and blood only serve as roots that keep him
tethered to a time defined only by despair. Erwin is free to bask in the awe of
it all, motivated by the hows and the whys, unknowingly leaving Levi trapped,
resolved that there was no reason at all. Everything was senseless, back then.
As he sees Erwin’s eyes widen in delight at
the discovery of another acquaintance from that time, Levi only feels his chest
ache. Once again there will be theories and insights flung about the room,
pleadings to try and remember and reveal just a little bit more.
Levi remembers just how desperately he had
once wished that they had both been born in a different time, free of Titans
and political puzzles, just so they could live in relative peace, and not
question everything around them, hyper fixating on something just out of reach.
It is almost amusing just how little a
whole new life had changed Erwin.
Levi can only hope that this time, he will somehow
be able to save Erwin from destroying himself.
But then he was called, to leave Heaven, to take a vessel; and for a trifle of a thing. To ensure the safety of one Luke Ramirez.
It was explained to Castiel, and he listened dutifully, that occasionally these sort of acts were required. Not miracles, per se, but little pushes, little nudges, all to ensure the correct path. The grand plan.
(He does not know this speech has been given to him many times.)
Accidents barely avoided, a heavy thing falling just a little short, a bullet that grazes your cheek.
Such is the work of angels.
Castiel goes immediately. There is no need to wait, the orders came, and it is happening now. Jimmy Novak is young, perhaps too young, but Castiel takes him anyway. He has no other options.
He follows Ramirez to the city center, his angel eyes sharp, his senses attuned to any possible danger. He receives some strange looks, perhaps because he has no coat, only a thin jacket to fight against the winter chill, or perhaps because such a young boy should not be travelling alone. Castiel does not notice, or care. No one approaches him.
The city is brightly lit, decorated to celebrate the upcoming holiday, the celebration of the birth of Christ. Obviously, things got a little lost over the years. The infant known as Joshua, and later Jesus, was not born in December as the stories said, but July. And there had been only two men in attendance, both of whom were certainly not wise.
The matter is simple. A couple dropped books, a redirection of a bicycle—and Ramirez’s path is blocked, for 30 crucial seconds, and the taxi that would have hit him drives safely by.
Castiel watches from a nearby storefront, a quiet pride in completing his orders.
He stays for a while, just watching, even though his charge has long since disappeared from view. Humanity is endlessly fascinating, and Castiel has never had the chance to see it this close.
He takes a deep breath into his borrowed lungs, turning his face up to meet the snow, falling from the sky. He should return to Heaven. He should return home.
“Dean Winchester, stop trying to grab the nice boy!”
Behind him stands a group of three people, taking brief shelter under the same awning. They are laden with their Christmas shopping, bundled up warmly for the Kansas weather, and Castiel knows them.
John and Mary Winchester. He recognizes their faces immediately. They are very important in his Father’s plan; and their names are etched into every angel’s brain. The man is holding what Castiel knows to be his son, the firstborn. And he also knows the great tragedy that will soon tear this family apart.
He peers at the infant struggling in his father’s arms. A small boy, eyes bright and green, hands grasping in Castiel’s direction. His mother brushes a hand through her son’s hair, smiling warmly at Castiel.
“I’m sorry,” she says. “He’s not usually like this.”
Castiel shakes his head.
“Quite alright,” he murmurs.
The boy continues to reach for him. His cheeks are pink with the cold, and he’s babbling happily, carefree and joyous. Castiel does not know his exact age; it is so hard to tell with human children. He could look into his soul and know—but that would be rude, Castiel thinks.
“Hello,” he says instead. “And who might you be?”
His father smiles, bouncing him slightly.
“This here’s Dean.”
He nods to the Winchesters, thinking now he definitely should be going. Coming down to Earth was one thing, but talking to humans? It was not mentioned in his orders. He should not disobey.
He inclines his head, and turns to take his leave.
Then Dean touches him.
His tiny hand catches his ear, sliding down his cheek—and Castiel is suddenly overwhelmed, with a flood of images that nearly leaves him staggering.
A barn, lights sparking before his eyes. A rain-filled room and an archangel with murder in his eyes. A ring of holy fire, a painful glance, hands pulling a sodden trenchcoat from the water. And longing, longing, longing, a bone-deep clamoring ache, only getting stronger as the images strengthen. Blood on his hands, not his own—and a hand on his face, begged words, his name said, over and over. Then not in pain, or hurt, or fear—but in heat. Passion.
He touches him, and Castiel knows instantly.
Dean Winchester is 22 months, 19 days, and 5 hours old. And in roughly 28 years, Castiel will meet him again. In the fiery pits of Hell.
He does not move. Castiel watches this small child, innocent, unknowing, still grasping at Castiel’s hair. He has no idea.
Castiel decides it makes him…sad.
He quickly backs away, ignoring the odd look Dean’s parents give him. They will not remember this. They will not remember an encounter with a strange boy, one cold December day, too long ago.
He ducks into an alley and disappears.
He safely returns Jimmy Novak to his bed, and for his benefit as much as his own, wipes the encounter from the boy’s mind. He is not so sure Jimmy would be so easily convinced a second time.
He returns quietly to Heaven, and his superiors radiate pride and happiness at his success. Castiel goes back to what he had always done before, working beside his brothers and sisters, and tries not to think of the human, with green eyes and the sun in his smile.
How would the chocobros react if their s/o somehow turned into a toddler? Sorry, I just thought of this and wanna know ^^; thank you!
YES I LOVE SITUATIONS LIKE THIS. SIGN ME UP. (I wrote this as s/o getting turned into a toddler both mentally and physically, and used “you” for ease of writing/reading)
So, preface. y’all know about that painting in Altissia, the supposedly haunted one? Vyv wanted a picture of the daemon haunting it, and of course you and the boys can’t refuse that. So you set out, gather information, and soon you find yourselves fighting this enchantress-like daemon, and she casts one of her spells, and you’re the one that gets hit with it. The boys finish off this thing rather quickly after that, but when they approach you there’s just a sleeping child in your place. They’re quick to realize that the sleeping child is you, and wow, this is strange. How long would this last?
Noctis has no idea what to do. Period. This guy is gonna be so lost. Like he carries the sleeping you around but he’s never held a kid before so his arms get really tired really quickly, why are kids this heavy, and he tries to wake you up, but you don’t budge, and he’s internally screaming. So when you finally do wake up, he’s just staring at you like… what do?? The youngest kid he’s ever had to deal with is Talcott, but you’re like a quarter of Talcott’s age, and… Just expect a lot of awkwardness.
Prompto is just as lost as Noct at first, but then it clicks in his mind that you’re a kid. And he can do kid stuff. He indulges in every little playful whim you get, and the games never stop with you two. The others are handling it well enough, though Ignis is looking simultaneously fond of your antics and like he wants to murder something. Prompto takes lots of photos of smol you and lots of photos of the two of you together and it’s super great. He manages to out-play you, and you fall asleep again, energy expended, and he just scoops you up and cuddles you while he carries you.
Gladio is the most prepared for this. He has a little sister, so he’s definitely trained in the ways of toddlers. Though… that being said, it’s been a long while since Iris has been a toddler, so he’s a bit rusty. Still, expect him to lift you up and onto his shoulders and tell you that you’re a giant. He’s also a tickle monster, but he stops that when you almost run yourself over a ledge and into the water. The last thing he needs is for you to drown. He’s like Prompto but with 99% more chill.
Ignis is off-put. He’s unfamiliar with children and he’s not sure how to handle this… Still. He mostly treats you the same as he did prior to the change, but he carries you around almost constantly and he asks many questions. And these questions aren’t entirely dumb, they’re more like – “Why are there clouds in the sky?” or “Why is the ocean blue?” mostly because he wonders about your response. And when you simply reply that “Cotton balls are really light” to his first question, but then go into some extremely detailed yet nonsensical story about why the ocean is blue, he nods his head and takes you completely seriously, indulging you that much. When you turn back into an adult, Ignis doesn’t fail to throw some of your own quotes back at you.
I actually enjoy the idea of this a lot, I might make it into a lil short series. This is such a nice ask. Thank you!
Hiya everyone! With the amount of fics I read, and as people sometimes ask me for recs, here it is. My oldies and newbies but goodies fic rec, with both new and older fics that I liked/loved, that I read for the first time or re-read, or alternatively and very creatively titled “Weekly Fic Recs” (this one is a bit late because of some issues with Tumblr). In no particular order:
The Grey’s anatomy/Chicago Fire AU no one asked for where Louis is the captain of the firefighting Squad 78, Harry is a surgeon, Zayn is Louis’ second in command and Liam is the rookie. Niall and Sam are Harry’s fellow residents and have their own affair going on. (Aka, “the Toast Fic”.
Listen, read this, you won’t regret it. Warning: Major character death, but it happens in the 2nd chapter and the first chapter can be read on its own and it’s soo good and fluffy and smutty (the death chapter is very very well written though if you want to read it).
This is the third game in a row that Harry has been distracted by the noisy boy in the stands, five rows back. There’s really no reason that he should feel compelled to stare into the audience as frequently as he is, but he can’t help it. This boy is a nuisance. And he’s loud. Even from basketball court with nine other players running by him, shoes squeaking on the shiny hardwood floor, and thousands of cheering college students, Harry can hear this boy nearly shrieking, his laugh more like a cackle than anything.It’s seriously obnoxious. (Honestly, I recommend reading anything by this author who is definitely one of my favs. This story is cute and funny and just amazingly well-written.)
They’ve discussed it a few times - the boyfriend thing. It’s not like it’s some forbidden, horrific, abandon hope all ye who talk about furthering the relationshipsort of subject. They’re mature adults. They’re in tune with their feelings, their hearts’ desires, the way those butterflies swoop in their bellies whenever they so much as hold each other’s hands. They like each other. A lot. It’s mutual, they know. But for now, they’re just content to enjoy the simplicity of what they have, and what they have is great. When dating in secret stops being enough, then they’ll discuss that too.
Or, the one where Harry teaches Sex Ed and sneaks around with the drama teacher, and doesn’t realize how out of tune he is with his true feelings until everyone else figures it out for him.
(Hot, and cute, and funny, and slightly angtsy, and then funny, and cute, and HOT.)
A college/uni fic. Harry has been working on a mural and has been struggling to find the right shade of blue. Until he meets Louis. (Essentially, a very silly take on what could have otherwise been an incredibly romantic tale!)
(I like this author very much a lot and this one-shot definitely didn’t disappoint. Clumsy goofy Harry is the best kind of Harry.)
Please continue to watch the show. To talk about it. Teens determine and influence all of this in general, and I hope and think our show reflects you for how you are: brave, opinionated, audacious, devoted, dynamic, loving, nurturing and powerful. People, more than often adults who have forgotten their power, will tell you differently and I hope that is when you turn to our show, which is now your show. I will continue to fight to not be talked down to by the shows and books and movies that are aimed towards us. I am sorry that this channel is just not able to understand that (don’t think for a moment this happened because of you.) But I know what we are capable of. I know very well what we did. I am above all humbled to know I belong to such an extraordinary generation. What an honor.
I love you. I love this cast. I love this crew. I love Riley. I love this world we made. I love that this is now your world.
Filled with gratitude, Rowan
Oddly enough it’s this (and particularly that parenthetical) that makes me dare to hope one last time that Rilaya might actually be their endgame. There’s a clear statement being made here: The show wasn’t cancelled for poor viewership or lack of engagement. Rowan feels that the channel is “not able to understand” their audience. Admittedly, this could be the biggest stretch of all the many stretches I’ve made on this blog - it could just be the heavier subject matter of the show in general - but I’m still not ready to let my hope completely die.
It’s not quite complete conjecture though; there’s precedent. Look at Good Luck Charlie, which just so happened to get cancelled after two wlw moms were introduced. People say it was going to be cancelled anyway, but it performed very well in the ratings. (Head and shoulders above the ratings performance of anything that’s on the Disney Channel today.) And even though that episode may not have aired before the decision was made, it’s likely that it had already been partially produced or at least written. Disney probably knew about it and allowed it to influence their decision. Then look at The Legend of Korra, where Nickelodeon pushed the show to online release and just so happened to pull an entire episode worth of budget in the season where two leads were confirmed to be wlw and the show ended. Look at how little effort Cartoon Network puts in to marketing Steven Universe even though they could easily increase their revenue from that show with just a little effort. And then we have GMW, cancelled even though it’s keeping pace with the rest of the Disney Channel lineup. (Outperforming KC Undercover and Bizaardvark, both of which have been renewed.) I’m just saying it wouldn’t be a shock to learn that Rilaya was part of the reason for the decision. I could easily be wrong.
Full disclosure though, I’ve felt for a long while now that GMW has hit the limit of what they can do on the Disney Channel. Even when the show was first announced I wanted it to go somewhere else. I was pleasantly surprised and charmed by what they were able to do within such limits, but I do feel that it would need to move to a different environment in order to continue to grow. I’m still hoping that they do get the chance to take the story somewhere else and continue it. With or without romance, I want to see Riley and Maya grow up like Cory, Shawn, and Topanga did. The show has done more than I would have expected before it started, but I would dearly love to see what a show like this is capable of without the Disney Channel holding its leash.
prompt: "i dragged u out at 11pm bc i know you used to secretly dream of walking down the city's main street under the fairy-light-wrapped-trees hand in hand with someone you love while christmas music played through the city's speakers dont u lie to me"
this prompt made me feel so soft i love it so much!!! thank you for sending it in and i hope you enjoy this silly (sappy little) drabble. :,)
day 2 of christmas drabbles!
yoongi falls asleep forgetting to reply to hoseok’s text, his phone held loosely in his hand. it lights up uselessly, a signal for another text. and when hoseok calls, yoongi fails to answer it, the boy too deep into sleep already.
and it isn’t even that late in the evening, too. just that yoongi’s had a long day of work. his headache had been a different battle altogether, and as much as he’d wanted to wait for hoseok’s reply, maybe even wait for a quick phone call before bed, yoongi had given in to the sweet, sweet call of slumber.
so when a hand folds around his shoulder and squeezes on it gently enough not to rouse yoongi too roughly out of sleep, he almost jumps out of his bones.
blinking tired eyes into the semi-darkness of his single lamp lit room, yoongi finds hoseok hovering over him, the boy sitting just on the edge of his bed, his smile wide, and his eyes bright.
“i thought i was going to die,” yoongi says, fingers circling around hoseok’s wrist. he rubs his thumb on the inside of hoseok’s wrist, his smile turning a little bit fonder with every second that passes. with hoseok just staring down at him, smile all too soft for eleven in the evening. for someone who’s just snuck into his boyfriend’s apartment to wake him up like this.
hoseok leans down, nosing up yoongi’s neck, the kisses that he presses on the edge of his jaw feather-light. yoongi closes his eyes again. this time, when sleep calls for him, yoongi tries to fight it. hoseok is here, however surprising it may be, but here he is. spare key in his coat pocket and all.
“missed you,” hoseok finally says, pressing a kiss to the tip of yoongi’s nose. “now come on, i wanna take you somewhere.” here his hold on yoongi’s shoulder slides down his arm, until hoseok’s got his fingers wrapped around yoongi’s hand. he gives it a squeeze. smiles even wider when yoongi’s brows furrow in confusion.
yoongi lets himself be dragged out of bed, though, because while it may have been a long day, it has also been a long day without seeing hoseok, and yoongi’s missed him, he really has. so they both stumble around yoongi’s apartment in the dark, hastily flicking on all the light switches they come in contact with until they’re both standing by the loft, hoseok helping yoongi put on his coat and gloves before he loops a scarf around a rather sleepy yoongi.
“where are we going?” yoongi finally asks after they’ve both stepped out the door. hoseok immediately finds yoongi’s gloved hand and holds onto it, letting his fingers slip between the spaces of yoongi’s. yoongi gives his hand a squeeze, looks up to hoseok through his lashes, and smiles. he thinks that wherever it’ll be at this godforsaken hour on a thursday night will be fine. more than fine, really, so long as he’s with hoseok.
in response to his question, hoseok leans down quickly to press a kiss to yoongi’s forehead. yoongi can already feel the smile before he actually sees it, but when he does, it’s as bright as ever.
“downtown,” hoseok tells him, hand still clasping yoongi’s tightly as they make their way out of the subway. as they make their way down the first couple of blocks. when they turn to a familiar street, yoongi knows instantly just where they’re going, and he stops, planting his foot.
“i can’t believe this,” yoongi starts. he can feel the near-burning of his cheeks, how red he must be right now. he tugs on hoseok’s hand. looks him in the eye, and doesn’t budge at all, not until hoseok sighs and wraps both his arms around him, dragging yoongi closer towards him.
“you mentioned it once,” yoongi can feel hoseok’s lips brushing over his forehead. can feel his smile once more. knows that hoseok’s laugh is coming before he actually hears it, and when he does, yoongi breathes out a sigh of relief, because here they are right in the middle of winter, all bundled up to fight the cold off at eleven in the evening. on their way to watch the city’s special lights display come midnight.
“no i didn’t,” yoongi can hear himself pout, but he doesn’t pull away from the hug, instead, he just tightens his grip around hoseok, face pressed against his chest. like this, and if yoongi listens hard enough, concentrates just that extra bit more, he’ll be able to hear the faint beating of hoseok’s heart. what a melody it will be.
hoseok finally pulls away to level yoongi with a quirked eyebrow and an amused smile. “really, because if i recall, you were sulking for a full week when you realised you’d missed it.”
yoongi opens his mouth but he fails to even construct an actual argument, so he closes it. holds hoseok’s hand, gives it a squeeze, and then says, “well.”
there is another laugh from hoseok, warm and all too amused, and yoongi can’t help it, he laughs, too, because this is hoseok, and trust hoseok to never let anything fly over his head. trust hoseok to remember that one time nearly a year ago.
trust hoseok, thinks yoongi.
trusting hoseok, yoongi knows, is the best decision he’s ever made in his life.
together, they make their way down the last block, taking one more turn. the first thing that greets them are the large trees. evergreens hanging over everything else, with bright, dazzling fairy lights wrapped around trunk, and hanging from every branch.
a soft christmas carol filters through the public speakers, and yoongi knows that they’ll only really have fifteen more minutes of this, the spectacle ending once the clock strikes twelve, but god, if it isn’t going to be one of the best fifteen minutes.
hoseok trades holding yoongi’s hand to swinging an arm around his shoulder, dragging yoongi to his side, and just like this, they fit the same way that they always do. the same way that yoongi always finds a space for himself beside hoseok. the same way that hoseok always finds a nook in yoongi’s heart he knows he can always crawl in and call home.
yoongi stares up at the trees the entire time, just the faintest smile on his face. and he must look like an actual idiot like this, too excited by a yearly display, but he likes it. has always wanted to try, and ever since hoseok—ever since hoseok had walked into his life by way of crashing through the window and landing on a pile of broken glass in front of yoongi, yoongi had thoughts. hoped. wanted—but life had always happened, and more pressing matters overtook this one simple want.
not this time, though. because hoseok remembered. because hoseok cared enough. because hoseok—because hoseok cares the same way he smiles. too big and too large for this life or the next.
when yoongi tears his gaze away from the beautiful display of twinkling lights to turn to hoseok, he finds that the boy’s already looking at him. the same way he always looks at yoongi when the sun’s set and everything is slower. the same way he looks at yoongi after they’ve both just doubled over in laughter. the same way he looks at yoongi early in the morning, when yoongi turns away from the wall to press himself close against hoseok, the first thing yoongi sees hoseok’s smile, soft. gentle. like there’s nowhere else he’d rather be. no one else he’d rather be with.
it is special. it is theirs.
“thanks for doing this.” yoongi says, tilting his head up to press a chaste kiss on the edge of hoseok’s mouth.
hoseok’s smile is less like he’s burning bright enough to be considered as the second sun and more like he’s finally found his place. finally found home after years and years spent just wandering around.
there is love and then there is this, hoseok and yoongi, the both of them together. something more, always, because with the both of them, there will always be more.
“i love you,” this one hoseok says right before he kisses yoongi, breath warm against yoongi’s cheek. there is a flash of a smile, and then a glint in hoseok’s eyes, before yoongi closes his to kiss hoseok.
yoongi runs his hand through hoseok’s fringe, brushing it away from his face. he cups a hand on hoseok’s cheek, thumb tracing over soft skin tinged pink from the cold. “love you, too.”
“promise you won’t mope?” hoseok grins at him, arm winding around yoongi’s waist.
yoongi presses his thumb into hoseok’s cheek, a more than playful warning for now. “mention that to anyone else and i’m destroying your present.”
when hoseok snickers saying that there’s no way yoongi would self destruct, yoongi pinches his cheek and groans. “you’re impossible.”
hoseok just laughs, and laughs, and soon enough, yoongi shakes his head. tries his hardest to stare him down, but it’s impossible. with the lights and the trees and the cheesy christmas song filtering through the speakers—it’s impossible to be anything else but in love with the boy who holds the sun and all of the stars in both his hands.
The Colonist - half Pakistani half Indian - Latesh Elizabeth “Lizzy” Shepard was raised Hindu by a single mother of six while growing up on Mindoir - though she has long abandoned her religion, traditional Indian clothing and the proud marks of her heritage make her feel close to the mother and siblings taken from her at 16
Very. At one point I;d say the two were really good friends. Though that was a long while back and a whole lot has happened in the interim. There has been the bogus revelation that Quicksilver is not truly Magnetos’ son, that he and Lorna are not really siblings; and there has been the whole Terrigen Cloud ordeal and the animosities between Inhumans and Mutants, culminating in the IvX event.
We haven;t seen Crys and Polaris interact since then and there’s no saying how these factors have affected their friendship. Does Lorna still consider Luna her niece? Is she mad at Crystal over there numerous deaths that the T-Cloud caused (including Lorna’s one-0time teammate, Jaimie Maddrox)? Is Crystal mad at Lorna, mad over the fact that her father destroyed the RIV and imprisoned numerous Inhumans in limbo where many died? It all remains unrevealed.
I’d love to see a scene between the two, interested to see where their relationship stands in the here and now… but I’m not holding my breath because we likely won’t see such a scene any time soon.
tl;dr - they had been close friends, essentially family; but I don’t know the current status of their relationship.
a/n: this is 100% @persephunee‘s fault, and don’t let her tell you any different.
this is only part of a longer “happy ending” (slash option 4) fic which I’ll be posting in installments, hence the vaguely suggestive beginning. not nsfw yet but future installments will be, so be warned (or hyped? idk). takes place after the end of the show and will include some small references to my current headcanons/theories about said ending, but in the end is mostly nerds kissing and doing…other stuff, also awful fluffy things about being in love and enjoying each other’s existence a whole lot. enjoy.
In hindsight, Yeon Joo doesn’t know why she agreed to this in the first place. He did ask nicely enough, yet there was something about his eyes…the way they seemed to be undressing her in every possible way, sizing her up and liking what they saw, that made her burn from head to toe. He didn’t expect her to say yes, she knew that. Maybe she said it just because of that. Maybe it was because of the catch in his voice this time that gave the words more meaning (not too long ago he’d been sure he would never have this chance).
The raw want in his eyes has been there a long while, and though it makes her nervous, part of her revels in it.
Maybe it’s that after all this time, all the variables they’d countered and now hard they fought to get to this point, it seemed foolish to waste any more time pretending to take things slow. He is hers in all but deed, he makes sure she knows that with even the most casual of touches, and she’s been his in her soul for so long now. There is something in her that will always ache for him. Now, having finally beaten the odds…they have catching up to do, as Chul said. But this…
It starts slow. Love is a patient thing, but ultimately Chul is not, and she knows it, and she loves him for it as she loves him for all the things he is. Her unconditional acceptance is met with curiosity and a lively interest, coupled with tenderness, trust, and a sweet protective streak, all overlaid with a strong physical attraction that he never lets her forget. He’s always touching her in small ways, buckling her seatbelt for her when they go driving, brushing a hand through her hair, kissing her forehead in quiet moments (he often needs reassurance, she finds, that she is still there and breathing and warm to the touch). All in all, a good recipe for a lasting relationship, but not the best combination for “taking it slow,” as he once put it, not in the long term.
In the end, it all comes together. They don’t plan it. They gravitate. Two worlds colliding.
It’s the most mundane sort of occasion that makes Chul realize. They’re just in the studio as usual after work, and Yeon Joo is discussing her last surgery with him and he’s pretending to understand (in the end, though they both require fine engineering, human beings work nothing like computers). He nods and takes stock of the things she says and makes a mental note to research the terms she uses later so he’s not confused on the difference between arrhythmia and arteriosus. She asks him if he wants ramyeon.
He realizes then that he can’t live around these things anymore. He can’t let these moments pass, can’t let her go another moment without knowing how much he adores her, how beautiful she is, how he could listen to her talk all day. How she is his life, and he couldn’t imagine an ending happier than this. He can’t think of the words to phrase these things because so much of it is beyond words and he knows, perhaps somewhat cynically, that so much of it is the mood. The warm sunlight of the studio and the first heady rush of love, so new to someone like him. He goes with it, though. He wants to be with her a long, long time. He wants to be old and still feel these things.
Yeon Joo trails off mid-sentence, noticing his silence and interpreting it as the lovestruck daze it is.
“What?” she asks.
She already knows what. He can clearly sense the satisfaction in the word, that birdlike tilt of her head that he loves and the quirk of her lips.
He kisses her. He doesn’t ask first and she doesn’t seem to mind, leaning in eagerly to the touch and looping her arms around his neck in a way that feels right, feels more than familiar. The studio is quiet and has a cozy, deserted feel to it.
Kissing Chul is something you can get lost in, Yeon Joo reflects. He is all soft lips and hypnotic motion and his hands cup her face with such gentleness, his right thumb tracing lazy circles against her skin. Chul’s in no hurry; he’s enjoying the intimacy and the empty studio and the little noises she makes when he positions her closer, his hands drifting downwards to rest warm against her hips. She feels brave suddenly, tingly all over and drunk on the feel of his lips. He’s good at everything, honestly, but the way he kisses…
She barely notices her hands moving until they’re threaded through his soft hair, tugging a little on the strands to access a new angle of his mouth. Chul seems to like this, because he breathes in sharply through his nose and suddenly he’s backing her up until her knees hit a solid surface and he’s pressed full length against her, sliding a knee between hers to prop her up against the kitchen counter and oh, they’re in new territory now for certain. He seems almost elated by this, a sort of triumph over his old self.
Therefore it may or may not be deliberate, the way he abandons the kiss for a moment in favor of taking her lower lip gently between his teeth, catching and tugging on it softly. This produces a sound from Yeon Joo that’s somewhere between a gasp and a whimper (the old Chul may have seen her nude, but this one is the first to elicit such a noise, he notes with deep satisfaction). He’d always wondered what would happen if he did that, and the result is more than gratifying. Her head tips back and his follows, and now she’s almost limp-bodied between him and the counter.
Yeon Joo doesn’t know whether to be relieved or disappointed when his hold on her loosens and he falls still. They separate, both breathing heavily from a combination of oxygen loss and and heady excitement, and she thinks the way he pants is nothing short of glorious.
In the aftermath of the kiss, they stay inhabiting the same space. The same small universe. They hold one another as they calm down, her hands stroking up and down his back, his head resting against the crook of her neck and shoulder, the ends of his hair tickling her cheek pleasantly. He smells like soap and the slightest hint of that expensive cologne he likes. The result is spicy-fresh and more than nice, in Yeon Joo’s opinion. She always enjoys these little touches, almost more than she enjoys the kissing itself. It seems even more intimate, somehow sacred.
Unknown to Yeon Joo, Chul vows then and there not to rest until he’s learned the full range of sounds she can make, has learned every inch of her inside and out. In time, though. For now he smiles, half at the ridiculousness of being in love and drunk on sunlight and kisses, and the relief that he’s allowed this at last, and half at the knowledge that there is much, much more to come. She just doesn’t know it yet.
She leaves soon afterward, after one last kiss to the forehead and promises to meet tomorrow for another coffee date, or possibly at home (as much as it makes them feel like a pair of naughty teenagers, it all depends on whether her mother is home or not). As much as they enjoy one other’s company, Yeon Joo is never one to stay long in her father’s studio, especially not after dark. Chul knows why. He himself often wished, on the nights after he got out of prison, that he had another place to go besides his own house. Whether that would have made things significantly better or not, he couldn’t say. At any rate, Yeon Joo only seems to stop by long enough to see him whenever she gets off work, and perhaps snatch a kiss or two in their moments alone (their total has hit twelve now; he’s been counting). Tonight she’s gone before the sun starts to get low, leaving Chul alone to contemplate how he’s going to stage this.
On the one hand, she’s been much less shy recently. He’s been doing research, if you could call it that, in his spare time, and there’s been plenty of it. For the moment he has neither work nor any significant hobby besides learning as much as he can and planning for their future, and it’s starting to make him itch a little. He wills himself to be patient. There’s plenty he’s eager to see and do with her, after all, but he doesn’t want to rush or make her uncomfortable. Rather, he wants to be as good as he can to her. As himself, as her husband. It’s the least he can do to make up for everything they’ve lost. It’s been months, and he’s ready for a change, but in the end the impetus will have to come from her. But…how?
Chul taps his fingers against his lower lip, considering. Suddenly he straightens - smiles to himself. There’s a thought blossoming at the back of his mind and he’s optimistic - no, certain - it will work. It has to. Ideas, after all, have always been his forte.
“Okay, Huckleberry. If you care about me, here’s what you
do. Go find Riley. Tell her you lover her.”
His heart stops at her words and he stares at her for a
moment. She is looking at him with determination in her eyes, her mind made up.
“Love her?” he repeats back.
“Just say it. We like it,” she waves him off and when she
does, he gives her a wide smile. This is the Maya he knows, the Maya he can
always be comfortable with, and he is so happy that this whole triangle
business is over. He’s not hurt, and more importantly, neither is she.
“Thank you,” he says as he wraps his arms around her,
drawing her in for a hug. Maya rests her head on his shoulder for a while, and
again, he is thankful. It’s not weird to show her any form of affection
anymore. For the first time in a long while, it feels as though a weight has
been lifted from his chest.
Out of all the stupid things I have done, propositioning Max with a kissing arrangement didn’t even rank among the highest. But it was stupid, because duh, why the fuck was I, Victoria Chase, swapping spit with the local hipster, thorn in my side, the hero of Blackwell, Max Caulfield?
Initially, I had blamed my lapse of judgment on the amount of alcohol I’d induced at the gathering, but that excuse could no longer explain why I was currently making out with Max Caulfield, even passed our original agreement of two months.
We were in her room, on her bed, open books and blank papers lain forgotten at our feet, and, honestly, if this was going to always be the outcome, then we were going to have to move our study sessions to the library. I couldn’t complain, though, or really think straight, not with the way that Max’s lips were attached to my neck. Her hands were beneath my shirt, caressing my sides as she worked up the nerve to travel higher.