Nessian + Love:
I think these two are very well matched in the love department. They have completely different ways expressing their love, and they don’t exactly dish it out to the same number of people but I think they both feel it in much the same way. Nesta and Cassian’s love is intense and fierce and passionate and all-consuming. Neither of these characters have any room in their lives for half-measures when it comes to love. They love with their whole being or else what’s the point in it?
I think love is also the biggest driving force for both of these characters. It’s the thing that keeps them going, love for their family in particular. And I think that, in each other, they’ve finally found someone who can share that love with them. Someone who understands. I think that scene in ACOMAF, where Cassian watches Nesta fight and argue with the queens and then steps up to swear that he will protect her and hers, that he can think of no nobler way to die than defending those who need it most, I think that’s when they first truly see one another and understand their similarities and that connection between them.
Because on the surface of it I’d genuinely challenge you to try and find two characters who are outwardly more different than Nesta and Cassian. He is warm and she is cold, he is open and she is reserved, he has a tender softness to him while she’s all hard steel. Yet beneath that, beneath those surface layers I think their hearts are alike. They’re both so intense and fierce and loyal and devoted. And they’ve finally found someone who can not only handle that fire but meet it with their own.
Nessian + Home:
I think home is a concept that both of these characters have struggled with. Cassian, bastard born and left to fend for himself never had a true home until Rhys’ mother took him in. And even then I think there was always a part of him who felt, no matter her kindness, that it wasn’t completely his. And now he’s divided between the Court of Dreams and Velaris and the war camps.
And Nesta. I don’t think Nesta has ever felt at home anywhere. Not even in her own skin. I think Nesta has struggled to find somewhere that she belongs, a place where she truly has a purpose, a place where she really means something, a place where she’s not just a burden for whoever else is there looking after her.
I like the idea of these two, who have always struggled to find a place to call home, realising that their home can be a person- that it can be each other.
House wise I don’t think they go for anything all that elaborate. I don’t think Nesta relishes living in poverty but she wasn’t exactly very comfortable in that giant manor house with all its servants either. I think their place is reasonably sized and, surprisingly enough, Nesta gives Cass pretty much free-reign over how to decorate it, she’s not really sure.
He makes sure to include her anyway and they go shopping for things together. It ends up being quite dark colour scheme wise, but warm dark. Lots of deep reds and rich purples and warm browns. it somehow manages to strike a perfect balance between elegant and homey which suits them perfectly. Their home is comfortable and rich without being lavish or fussy. And it’s relatively small and cosy, neither of them wants a huge house with empty, echoing spaces and rooms they can’t properly fill and will never use.
Nessian + birth:
The Inner circle has confronted The War, Amarantha, the King of Hybern, and Amren in a bad mood. All of those things combined were not enough to prepare them for Nesta pregnant/in labour.
Nesta suffers while she is pregnant.
Her morning sickness is horrendous, Cassian spends three solid months holding her hair and rubbing her back while she curses at him (very colourfully. He learns quickly not to laugh at these curses, they are not meant to be amusing. She will kill him if he does that again) between retching.
She has seriously horrendous mood swings. One minute she’s screaming at Cassian and threatening to ‘un-mate’ him because there’s a stray sock lying on their floor. The next she’s sobbing uncontrollably in his arms because she’s sorry, it’s just a sock, it doesn’t matter, it really doesn’t she loves him so much. They all have a lot of fun with her while she’s like this (Azriel suggests, very seriously, taking a nine month holiday with Mor. She’s tempted to take him up on that offer) Rhys is nearly decapitated on a weekly basis.
When they visit a healer to make sure everything is progressing as it should they’re told she’s having twins. Nesta looks from herself, to Cassian, to her slightly swelling belly in abject horror. Nesta is fairly delicately built, she’s slim and slender, she has a dancer’s body. Cassian meanwhile is, well, ‘hulking’ when she’s feeling generous ‘fukcing enormous’ when she’s not. And she has to carry not one but two of his monster children at the same time???
Cassian does worry about her a few times during the pregnancy because it does take quite the toll on her. But Nesta is very resolute and she gets through this pregnancy like a trooper. Sadly things don’t really improve as she gets further on.
She does get over the morning sickness, that eventually stops. And the mood swings settle, she ends up being ‘completely and utterly infuriated with everything’ as a constant default setting, that’s okay. Most unfortunately she also starts getting big and monstrously uncomfortable. And she pitches very rapidly from ‘I am not an invalid Cassian don’t you dare try and help me’ to ‘Cassian I am carrying your monster children over here the least you can do is help me????’ Cassian is up and down like a yo-yo with her but he’s literally never been more hearteyes over her in his entire life. The angrier she gets the more he falls in love because look how much his lady is going through to bring his gorgeous babies into the world. Appreciate her dammit.
Babies are also incredibly active. They move around a lot. They kick a lot (to Cassian’s complete and utter delight and Nesta’s complete and utter it’s three o’clock in the morning stop moving) and by like seven or eight months Nesta is just like…I’m never doing this again. If you want more kids you can have them. I don’t think that’s how it works sweet- *death ray glare* I will have them, I will have all of the future children I promise.
I feel like Nesta goes into labour at like…the worst time ever. I also feel like she’s early and she goes into complete and utter denial about it. She’s a couple of weeks out and Cass gets pulled away for some discipline issues in the camps and she shoos him away because it’s fine, I’m not due for three weeks, go.
Cassian goes. Nesta decides that she’s not letting a little thing like pregnancy and common sense stop her enjoying herself so she goes out to lunch with the ladies. Her contractions start at the table just as they’re about to have tea and she just oh no, no you don’t, you can just damn well wait so you can, I’m not ready, your father isn’t here, don’t you pull this shit with me. Elain tries to reassure her that she might just be having a few practice contractions, she’s had them sometimes, it’ll be fine.
One minute and a smashed teacup later and things are decidedly not fine. Her water has broken and Elain is rolling up her sleeves and announcing that they’re just going to have to accept and deal with this situation. Nesta is flatly informing her that no, no they will not she’s just going to get these children told and they’re going to stay put so they are. She is their mother, they will listen to her.
Elain has already taken charge of the situation as she is, at this point, a dab hand at pregnancy and labour and well aware that babies wait for no-one. When they’re ready, they’re ready. Feyre is ordered into helping find her pillows and towels to keep Nesta comfortable (I am not having my children in the back room of a teashop Elain!) meanwhile Mor is dispatched to winnow through every single war camp until she finds Cassian and then she is to bring him here immediately, Elain doesn’t care what he’s doing. (People don’t argue with Elain when she uses That Voice, they just don’t)
Elain makes a lot of polite apologies to the rather frazzled shop owner and Feyre pulls the High Lady card to clear the little shop and give them space, then she sends for a healer. Elain meanwhile is calmly telling them that they’re probably going to have to deliver them here, you know, things are progressing quite quickly. Feyre and Nesta are both a bit kind of !!! at this point and how can you be this relaxed?? But this is what Elain excels at, really.
Nesta does have a bit of a panic because by this point Elain has very decidedly coaxed her out of her leggings, onto a comfortable position on the floor and things have started to get mighty painful. She squishes Feyre’s hand and curses Cassian a lot but she can only keep up the act so long because then it sinks in. She’s giving birth to her first child and her mate isn’t here and she’s scared.
Elain keeps her as calm as possible, holding her hand and stroking her hair and sponging her forehead with a damp cloth. And at the same time growling at Feyre to contact Mor and tell her to hurry up. Cassian does manage to appear just in time looking very frazzled with an irked Mor at his side.
He just dives into this tiny little tea shop knocking tables aside in his agitation to get to his mate. Nesta has quite a mixed response at seeing him. Half of her sort of, bursts into very relieved tears at the sight of him hurrying towards her. The other half growls furiously at him and starts demanding to know where he was and why he left her like this and she’s in labour and he wasn’t here and and and- both at the same time so it’s a bit of a mess.
Nesta does manage to decide (and communicate) that she wants Cassian to be beside her for this. Feyre moves away and gives Cass her spot beside her while Elain continues her measured instructions on what to do, as though she delivers her sister’s babies every day, it’s no big deal really.
Cassian gets his hand very, very soundly crushed by Nesta (and he does not object to this in the slightest, whatever helps you sweetheart) because this hurts and it’s entirely his fault. A)- for knocking her up in the first place and B)- for bestowing his sense of atrocious yet highly dramatic timing on their children. Cassian just strokes back her hair and nods and agrees with every curse filled assessment of him in between squeezing her hand and telling her how proud of her he is.
Baby one is born without any great drama (besides the whole tea shop late father thing) and Nesta takes one look at her and decides that this was all worth it, all of it, it really was….Then ten seconds later the other one starts to painfully makes its way into the world and she goes right back to nope, this was a terrible idea and we are never doing it again. Then the second one is born too and she’s changing her mind again because they’re so beautiful, Cass, they’re perfect.
All in, Nesta delivers two babies in under two hours and she’s completely and utterly exhausted by the end of it. Cassian gets very, very weepy when they present him with his daughters and is fairly convinced he’s never going to be able to use his left hand ever again but it’s completely and utterly worth it. His mate is incredible, his daughters are incredible and he’s just…so grateful for it all.
The inner circle arrive (Az coaxed out of hiding now that the danger of terrifying Nesta has more or less passed) and help get the little tea shop put back together and Nesta and her bubbas safely moved back home where they can be more comfortable. Everyone comes to visit and hold them and gush over them because they’re very adorable. Realising Nesta is completely knackered, Cassian gently shoos everyone off after a couple of hours to give them some peace.
Nesta flatly informs him once they’re alone that she never plans to sleep again, she has to keep watch over her babies, make sure they’re all right. Cassian presses a soft kiss to her forehead and very gently scoops the one she had been holding against her into his arms. He balances the two of them, one tucked in the crook of each arm, perfectly peaceful, and tells her to sleep, he can watch over all three of them.