lena all but breaks down the door to angela and amélie’s shared room at the watchpoint, fearing for angela’s life from hearing all the screaming, only to fine a terrified amélie, alone, going way the fuck overboard trying to kill a spider
REMEMBER HOW I WAS DOING THESE TO FIGHT OFF JETLAG
FUN FACT I LOST
10. the one where you have a timer on your wrist that counts down to when you meet your soulmate.
“Ammi,” Derek says, tugging on his mother’s skirt. “Ammi, I got something on my hand.”
His mother looks up from her laptop, brow furrowing, and he holds up his arm for her, sleeve pulled back to his elbow. “Oh,” she says, and she gives him the smile that’s his favorite, the one that’s just for him. She pushes her computer away. “These are your numbers, hayati,” she says, and rolls her own sleeve up. “Like mine and mama’s, you see?”
Derek stands on his tiptoes so that he can look at her wrist, at the 0.0.0.0.0.,unmoving against her skin. He looks at his own, shifting as he watches: 220.127.116.11.22. 18.104.22.168.21. 22.214.171.124.20. “Yours don’t move,” he says, frowning. “How come mine move?”
“Because,” she says, touching his hair gently, her eyes soft. “They’re counting.”
“Heads up, Billy!”
Billy snaps his head up on instinct, and then immediately yelps and ducks as his brother flings a baseball at his head. “Matt,” he whines, and then, louder, “Mom!”
“Take it outside, boys,” their mother says, without looking up, and Billy makes a face but lets his big brother drag him outside to the lawn.
“I was busy,” he says crossly, even as he takes the ball from Matt and picks up one of the gloves that they never bother bringing inside in the summer.
Matt rolls his eyes, picking up his own glove and jogging back a few steps. “You were not,” he says. “You’re just looking at your numbers again.”
Billy flushes. “I just like watching them,” he says, even though he knows it’s dumb. He knows it’s basically gonna be forever until they tick down to zero–126.96.36.199.37. 188.8.131.52.36. 184.108.40.206.35–but he likes it. It’s something to look forward to.
“Dork,” Matt says, but it’s fond. “You better hope your soulmate likes romance.”
Billy makes a face. “Gross,” he says, winding back to throw the ball, and Matt laughs.
“With your luck,” he says, “you’ll probably get a poet.”
Derek rubs absently at his wrist as he reads the next page of Romeo and Juliet. When he concentrates, he can feel the seconds counting down, the shift of the bio-ink on his skin, but he shouldn’t be concentrating on that now. He has homework to do.
The door to the stairwell opens, and he shifts automatically to pull himself out of sight. He doesn’t quite move fast enough, though, and a moment later, Shitty Knight’s face appears over the railing. “Nursey?” he’s frowning. “What’re you doing down here, bro? We’ve got practice in twenty.”
“I know,” Derek admits. “I was. Uh.” Hiding sounds stupid, right? He shouldn’t be hiding.
“Dude.” Shitty swings himself over the railing and sits next to him. “What’s up? You okay?” He frowns. “Is Connors giving you shit again? I’ll get that little motherfucker thrown off the team, dude, I swear to God I will.”
“No,” Derek says, quickly. “No, it’s fine. I’m just.” He shrugs. “Homesick, I guess?”
Shitty’s face softens. “Oh.” He nudges Derek, almost fondly. “Hiding in a stairwell’s not gonna make you feel less homesick, bud.”
“I know that.” Derek rubs his wrist. Then, on a whim, he glances at Shitty. “Hey. Have your numbers hit zero yet?”
“Nah.” Shitty extends his wrist so Derek can see. 1.2220.127.116.11. Derek feels a stab of jealousy. His own numbers are still ticking down from four years. Shitty raises his eyebrows. “Is that what you’re homesick for? You don’t have to be embarrassed about that.”
Derek shrugs, rubbing his thumb over his wrist again. “It just feels weird,” he murmurs, “to miss someone I’ve never met.”
Will looks at the pamphlets spread out over his kitchen table. He’s got offers for a few of them already, has already done a couple tours. It’ll be down to scholarships, he knows, if he’s looking to go private, and that’s kind of a lot of pressure, but…
“Penny for your thoughts, Billy,” his dad says, plopping down into the chair next to him.
“Um.” Will puts down the Samwell University booklet, hoping his flush doesn’t show too much on his face. “I was just, you know. Thinking.” He gestures to the piles of glossy materials on the table. “It’s a lot.”
“It is a lot,” his dad agrees. He pulls one of the pamphlets out. “I thought you were thinking UMaine? Keep the Black Bear generation going?”
His mom went to UMaine for nursing, and Matt’s there now, working on his Forestry and Survey Engineering Technology degree. It’s a good school, Will knows, and not too far from home, and the hockey team wants him. Playing Div I hockey at his mom and brother’s alma mater isn’t the worst prospect, but.
But he’s been getting scouts from Samwell, too, and there’s something about that 1 in 4, and maybe more! that makes the numbers on the inside of his wrist tickle when he reads it.
“I don’t know,” he says. “I don’t think I’m ready to rule out Samwell just yet.”
Derek’s not a math guy, but he doesn’t have to be a genius to figure out that the numbers ticking down on his wrist are going to hit zero the same day he’ll be touring Samwell. He calls his sister in a panic when he realizes, and she laughs at him over the phone, tells him to get a good night’s sleep–“right,” he says, “like that’s gonna fucking happen”–and not to put too much product in his hair because his soulmate should like it the way he is.
She thinks she’s hilarious, probably. Derek hangs up and screams into his hotel pillow.
He ends up awake half the night, too wired to sleep, and almost sleeps through his alarm. He grabs an Uber to Samwell’s campus and just about falls out of the car when it pulls up in front of Faber, the skin on his wrist tingling and prickling under his sleeve.
The inside of the rink is as cold as they always are, but he’s glad for the sudden chill–it might actually cool the crazy flush in his skin. Derek peers around, looking for the rest of the prospects, and spots the group in the stands, halfway around the rink. 0.0.0.01.22. He takes a breath, pushes his hair off his face, puts his hat back on, and heads off towards them.
And promptly almost slips down the stairs–
Except someone grabs his arm.
“Jesus,” says the kid holding onto him, looking at Derek with the prettiest fucking eyes he thinks he’s ever seen in his life. “I hope you’re smoother on the ice, dude.”
“Uh,” Derek says, staring. “I try to be.”
He doesn’t need to look at his wrist to know his numbers just hit zero. He swallows. “Thanks, for–” he gestures, with his free hand, and clears his throat. “I’m Derek.”
The kid’s gaze flickers down, to the grip of his fingers on Derek’s sleeve, and he says, “I’m Will. Well–Dex.”
I’ve been waiting my whole life for you, Derek thinks. He says, voice hoarse, “You’re still holding my arm.”
Dex flushes scarlet under his freckles. “I–” he says, and then, “Yeah.”
we now return to your regularly scheduled mercymaker shitposts
pharah: so how long have you been sleeping with widowmaker mercy: what?? thats disgusting. and wrong. and i dont even get—why would—ive never had sex with anyone. anywhere. its none of your—the nerve, the audacity, widowmaker is my enemy, technically. and how—how do i know, frankly, that youre not sleeping with her?? maybe you are. maybe youre trying to throw me off. hm?? check and mate
imagine amelie rubbing her temples in frustration & disbelief as angela has to carry like 30 mugs from her study to the kitchen bc theyre literally straight up out of mugs like “this, this is where i have chosen to lay my affections,”
widowmaker: youre completely unbelievable, im just ignoring you now mercy: [continues reading medical journal] widowmaker: widowmaker: widowmaker: widowmaker: did you hear me? i said im ignoring you mercy: oh i heard you alright widowmaker: oh widowmaker: widowmaker: you didnt respond so i wasnt sure if you were listening mercy: didnt think i needed to, youre meant to be ignoring me widowmaker: i AM ignoring you mercy: yes, so i see, and youre doing such a splendid job of it too widowmaker: see id respond to that but im ignoring you