Also 8: "Let's just pretend. Just for tonight." Enjoltaire ily ❤
Okay so this is part of this Fantasy From Enemies to Lovers fic idea in which Grantaire is the crown prince of a kingdom stolen to Enjolras’ royal family. They now working together to get Enjolras on the throne, but confusing feelings are getting in the way
Also this got way out of hand and ended up being 900 words long
The festivities were going full swing, but Grantaire’s heart was not in it. He felt out of place, like an intruder, watching the revellers making merry, dancing and singing, like one would look at a picture, standing outside of the frame. He could not join them, not when his father was the one bleeding them dry with taxes. Or bleeding them dry in a much more literal sense.
How could he celebrate the harvest, when he was standing on a blood-soaked soil? Fruits didn’t taste the same, now that he knew. Grantaire could feel the tinge of iron everytime he ate one, and had to swallow the guilt with every bite.
Leaning against a fence, Grantaire watched the flames of the bonfire tickling the stars. They were supposed to ward off wicked spirits that would ruin the next crops, Bossuet had told Grantaire when he had asked. They didn’t build bonfires for the harvest, back at the palace. You can’t ward off the wicked spirits when they’re already inside, Grantaire had thought bitterly.
The sounds of music and laughter were deafening. Longing for some peace of mind, Grantaire retreated towards the woods, hoping that the trees would muffle the noise. Enjolras was there, right on the edge of the forest, sitting on a stump. He stood up awkwardly as Grantaire approached, and Grantaire held his steps.
“I didn’t mean to disturb you,” he said, trying to keep his voice neutral.
“You didn’t. I just needed to be somewhere… calmer. The smoke went to my head.”
Grantaire nodded in acknowledgement. If Enjolras had noticed Grantaire had spent the whole day avoiding him, he didn’t show any sign of it. Nothing in his voice suggested he remembered the kiss they had exchanged either. Grantaire didn’t know if he should have felt relieved or sad about it.
“I don’t want to scare you off, but that will be one of your duties when you’re king,” Grantaire teased, a crooked smile on his lips. “Presiding balls. Standing in a noisy throne room. Pretending you’re having a good time.”
“It take it that wasn’t your favourite part of being crown prince.”
“No, screw that. That’s why I’m leaving you the throne, I couldn’t stand it more than a year!”
Enjolras laughed softly at that and leant against a trunk. It was rare, seeing him laugh. Grantaire supposed being the only living heir of a royal line did that to a person. Perhaps, if Enjolras’ father was still on the throne, he and Grantaire could have grown together. Enjolras, the golden crown prince, and Grantaire, a child of the aristocracy. He wondered how different that Enjolras would have been from the one he was looking at now.
“Perhaps you shouldn’t stay here too long,” Grantaire advised. “These are your people. You should celebrate the harvest with them. Make a speech or something. People love it when their monarch has a flair for the dramatic.”
“I’m good here for now,” Enjolras answered, closing his eyes.
Knowing he couldn’t be seen, Grantaire took a couple more steps towards Enjolras, looking at his features. If it was rare to see Enjolras laugh, it was even rarer to see him so exposed, defenseless.
“That’s funny,” Grantaire said.
“That you’re letting me this close. If Courfeyrac knew you were alone with the rotten usurper, he’d probably shit himself.”
“You’re not going to kill me,” Enjolras asserted. “You would have done it fifty times over by now.”
“Does that mean you trust me?”
“Something like that.”
Grantaire was a couple of feet away now. Enjolras didn’t say anything, watching him approach with his arms crossed against his chest. If he wanted Grantaire to step back, he would have said so by now. There was a fleeting moment of silent between them.
“What are you thinking about?” Enjolras finally asked.
Grantaire’s chest tightened.
“About how different it could have been.”
Enjolras didn’t say anything, but Grantaire could feel the air getting thicker. Yet, he did not move. His eyes kept looking into Grantaire’s. Tentatively, as though he was afraid of being burnt, the other put a hand on Enjolras’ shoulder. The muscles under Grantaire’s fingers were tense, but there was no attempt to push him away. Slowly, Grantaire followed the curve of Enjolras’ elbow to find his hand.
“How different?” Enjolras asked, pushing him to elaborate.
“The court, the palace, the kingdom… everything. You. Me. I would have been part of the court. Perhaps we could have been friends.”
The word sounded off in his mouth. Were they even friends now? Enjolras was so close that Grantaire could feel his breath against his lips. As close as they had been last night, when Enjolras had kissed him. Grantaire’s gaze went from his eyes to his lips. For a second, Enjolras dipped closer, his breath getting warmer against Grantaire.
Enjolras pushed him away.
“It doesn’t change anything,” he said, his voice as cold as his cheeks were hot.
“Let’s just pretend. Just for tonight!” Grantaire tried desperately.
“I can’t!” Enjolras snapped back, before storming off towards the bonfires, his hair set ablaze by the light of the flames.