For the prompt thing if you could do a winter klance. Like when you go to winter mart and there’s stalls with freshly baked bread and ginger bread cookies. Some people sell warm apple cider and there are horses that pull a big sled that take you around town. Maybe getting to look at ornaments and getting Keith to get mittens (cause his gloves don’t cover his finger tips). Idk if it’d be modern au or BOM Keith taking a break for Christmas (upon the team’s insistence). It has fluff potential... :)
I always really love this aesthetic but whenever it gets really popular, I find it hard to get really immersed because it’s like… 30 some degrees celsius outside for me haha. But I always love writing winter market scenes, so lets do this. (Modern au btw)
Lance waits on the outskirts of the the markets, his cheeks turning pink and his breath forming clouds around his lips. Music echoes from some speakers somewhere in the markets and Lance can’t wait to taste whatever is making that sweet, spicy smell. His legs start to tremble in the cold.
Lance flicks through his phone once more. Only a message from Hunk.
Hey, sorry Pidge and I suddenly had to stay at uni. Our professor needed a hand with some research and he called in a favour. Apparently we “owe him” after he didn’t report us for blowing up the autoclave.
Lance pouts, but understands. He hammers out a quick reply. It’s ok. He can still have fun with Shiro, Allura, Matt, and… Keith. Lance swallows. He tries not to think about the excitement that thrums through his veins when he realises he’ll be hanging out with Keith outside of class.
He’s just starting to get his pulse under control when he sees a familiar face across the parking lot. The shorter boy looks to be dealing with the cold weather even worse than himself, holding his frame around the middle and shivering inside a jacket that is far too thin. Lance waves and shouts out his name. Keith forces a smile and jogs into the dim lamplight. His nose is pink.
“Hey, where are the others?” Lance looks across the dark stretch of parking lot but sees no one else he recognises. Shiro and Keith always showed up to events together, being roommates and all, and Matt would usually come with Shiro.
“They’re not coming. Matt apparently spaced on an assignment that’s due in two days? And Shiro used to tutor that class so he’s helping him.”
“Oh…” Lance pauses. “We should we wait for Allu-”
“Allura had to go home today. Apparently her Uncle prepared a surprise ski trip for christmas so she’s flying back to Europe tonight.”
“Oh…” Lance repeats. He shuffles nervously on his feet and kicks a lump of ice with his boot.
“Where are Hunk and Pidge?” Keith asks. He rubs his hands together in a vain attempt to stop them from freezing.
“Also not coming.” Lance sighs. “Had to help a professor of theirs soooooo~”
“Sooooo…” Keith mimics.
The two boys stare down at the ice, not quite sure how to proceed. Lance bites his lips, while Keith scratches his chin.
“Look, Lance… it’s really cold and maybe we should-”
“Ah no, c’mon man!” Lance pouts. He starts to grab the hem of Keith’s jacket.
“We’re already out! We’re here! We’re already cold and damp! We can have a good time, just you and me.” Lance tugs Keith closer. Keith finds himself unable to pull away. He rolls his eyes and smirks.
“You don’t wanna hang out with me?” Lance puts on his best puppy eyes. Keith groans.
“No of course-”
“Then let’s go!”
Before Keith can protest, Lance’s hand is wrapped around his and he’s being pulled to the market’s entrance. His eyes adjust to the hundreds of twinkle lights that drape themselves through the trees. Bright lanterns cast warm light onto the cobblestone pathway that has been cleared of snow. Food stalls stretch out in front of them, their plumes of sweet smoke and steam scenting the air all around, and a children’s choir sings in the distance.
“So!” Lance claps his hands together and beams. His tan skin looks particularly golden in the warm light.
“Where to first? What’s your favourite christmas food or activity?”
Keith blanches. He fidgets with the cuffs of his jacket and shrugs.
“I don’t uh… I don’t mind. Whatever you want.”
“No, I wanna know. What’s your favourite christmas market treat?” Lance presses. He waits expectantly with a bright smile and gleaming eyes. Keith sighs.
“Lance I uh… I’ve never really done Christmas before.” He mumbles. Keith’s feet move him over to the closest stall to look at the handmade candles on sale. They have scents such as baked apple, pine, and butterscotch. Keith curiously sniffs them distractedly, like he hasn’t just admitted something very personal. Lance jogs after him.
“Wha…what do you mean you’ve never ‘done Christmas’? Like you haven’t Done a white Christmas? Cuz I know you’re originally a desert kid…”
“No, no, I mean…” Keith sets down the bergamot candle he was inspecting and turns towards Lance. He never makes eye contact and wraps his arms tighter around his waist.
“Like I never really had a proper Christmas. I don’t remember them with my biological family, and things were pretty depressing at the orphanage. Of course I had friends at boarding school, but SHiro and the others would go home for Christmas and I would be…” He scratches his chin. Keith wishes he could melt away like the slush under his boots.
“I would be alone so…” Keith forces a smile. “Anyway, it’s fine, but yeah I really don’t have a good understanding of Christmas traditions. So why don’t you show me your favourite things.”
“No.” Keith snaps. His voice is sharp. Lance winces. Keith softens and gently touches his elbow.
“I don’t want you pity. I’m ok. And I’m really excited to be here with you now.” Keith smiles. Truly smiles. And Lance feels like the wind has been knocked out of him.
“Well ok!” Lance claps his hands together. “Let’s have the best Christmas EVER!” He announces. He turns and begins to eye over the many stalls in front of him, thinking about what they’ll do first.
“So where to first?” Keith steps close and rocks on the balls of his feet.
“Man, I have no idea. I’ve never done one of these things before.”
“Wha…? But I thought…?”
“I’m from Cuba dude. All this chestnuts and pumpkin pie stuff is completely new to me. I’m as much at a loss as you.” Lance laughs. He eagerly begins to wind his way through the crowds, making his way towards a drink cart that is continuously serving up mugs of steaming liquid.
“Hold up!” Keith tugs his sleeve. Lance halts.
“So you’re telling me that neither of us has any idea what we’re supposed to do here?” His eyes narrow. Lance places his hands on his hips. His warm laughter clouds around his face and his ears begin to turn pink as they creep out from beneath his beanie.
“Yup!” He laughs. Keith blusters, but stops when Lance pulls him close. His voice becomes quiet.
“But I wouldn’t want to experience this any other way.”
Keith blushes and hopes that Lance attributes it to the cold.
“Now c’mon, let me buy you an apple cider.”
“Is it good?”
“No idea, but I like apple juice so you know…”
The two boys laugh and begin to line up at the cart. When they’ve received their orders and their bellies start to warm with the sweet and spicy liquid, Lance announces their next quest.
“I’m going to buy you a Christmas hat.”
“Because you look even worse suited to the cold weather than me. SO I’m going to buy you a hat. And it’s going to be red, and the more pom poms on it the better.” Lance wraps his fingers around Keith’s and they walk hand in hand through the markets.
“And then we’re going to get some chestnuts because I want to know why white people sing songs about them all the time. And we’ll see what this gingerbread hype is all about too.” Keith tightens his grip and giggles.
“I want to go ice skating.” He states. Lance hums.
“I hear it can be really dangerous. Have you done it before?”
“Me neither…. I’ll race you around the rink.”
Both boys laugh and feel their chests start to warm with something else besides the cider.