Bucky was nowhere to be found for almost two days.
Well, that wasn’t entirely true, he was still sleeping in bed with Steve and Clint every night, but as soon as he got back from his run with Sam and Steve, he disappeared.
He wasn’t around for meals, or when Pepper made her famous double chocolate fudge brownies, that everyone ate entirely too many of and then spent a few hours trying to nap off the carbs on the couch.
When Natasha and Clint took off for a quick assignment, taking the jet to Chicago, Bucky wasn’t there to say goodbye, or to welcome them back the next day.
Bruce had sent a message via Steve asking Bucky to come down to the lab and take a look at the new design he was considering for his metal arm, and Bucky had never responded.
Tony was worried, but Steve assured him that Bucky was fine, just being overly quiet. That he still slept with his arms wrapped around Steve, and slept all night with no nightmares, Steve just didn’t know where he went during the day.
Bucky was just nowhere to be found.
So Tony was understandably surprised when he walked through his dark lab, and Bucky spoke from the couch in the corner.
Author’s note: I’m sorry for my lack of writing, I haven’t had a lot of motivation because I’m juggling college and work and I’m trying my best to fit whatever writing I can in between. I hope I’ve written this nicely. I’m pants at weddings, I’ve only been to one wedding in my life. I hope you enjoy!
Request: @narcissistvirgoladycould you please write a fluff where Sherlock and reader are getting married(small ceremony) and Sherlock is really really nervous, ending with beautiful vows? thank you :)
Sherlock let out a deep breath and slowly took in another as he continued to frantically pace back and forth in his childhood bedroom. The familiar surroundings from his youth eased his mind a bit but not enough to stop him from pacing a hole in the carpet. Feeling tense and nervous wasn’t something that Sherlock was accustomed to, in fact, he rarely was ever nervous but for this particular day the feeling consumed him entirely and ignited his body with constant worry. Desperate to gather his nerves, he tried tackling one of John’s breathing exercises, it worked… somewhat. The results weren’t exactly satisfactory. Sherlock stopped pacing and ran his fingers through his soft curls and thought about how foolish he was acting. He didn’t have any reason to worry.
There were many months of extensive planning that came from both you and Sherlock for the wedding. Not to mention the excitement that gleamed in your (E/C) eyes every time you spoke of the arrangements and the smile that grew on your face each time you counted down the days. That alone put his thoughts to rest. Truly, he was lost without you. Sherlock didn’t know how much longer he had to wait until he could see you. His mother and Mrs. Hudson swept you away a few days prior to the wedding, something about a tradition to keep the bride away from the groom until the actual ceremony. Only then did Sherlock notice that those three days had been the longest he’s been away from you ever since he returned from the dead.
A knock came upon the door causing Sherlock’s gaze to break away from an old poster of a periodic table he had on his wall. John appeared from the doorway dressed in a smart grey suit that he had bought especially for the occasion. Since Sherlock asked him to be his best man, John took the role seriously and thought he needed to look the part. The ex-army doctor greeted Sherlock with a big grin plastered on his face and chuckled as his best friend nervously returned the smile. Never in John’s life had he seen Sherlock in such a state. The detective wasn’t even entirely dressed. His dark grey tailcoat was still on its hanger and his dress shoes were strewn on the carpet, the buttons of his vest were buttoned improperly and his bright eyes were wide with worry.
“Nervous?” asked John. Sherlock opened his mouth as to say something but closed it before taking in another breath of air and letting it out quickly. This caused John to chuckle and sit on a chair that was next to the door.
“I hate to admit it, I am nervous. Incredibly so. Why am I? I shouldn’t be! (Y/N) accepted my proposal, I made sure she thought it through more than once. She didn’t hesitate one bit during the preparations, in fact, she dove right into it. I know she wants to marry me, and I know I want to marry her so why am I so bloody nervous?” Sherlock turned to his friend for answers.
“Sherlock, it’s a big day. I was in the same place you were when I was marrying Mary. I wasn’t having second thoughts but I was wondering if she was which got me to worry. Believe it or not, this is a big step. You’re legally binding yourself to (Y/N) in front of your family and friends. You’re declaring your love for one another and promising each other the rest of your lives. Though the basics of it don’t show it, you’re just signing a paper, but emotionally it is the biggest thing one can go through. I would worry if you weren’t nervous. You do have your vows written, right?”
Sherlock gave him a look.
“Don’t look at me like that, I was only asking. The vows are the most important part of the ceremony. They come from the heart and they’re supposed to be very intimate.”
Sherlock thought through John’s words and he was right. Though the ceremony itself was rather pointless, there were words to be spoken and then the signing of a paper to finalize everything, but the meaning behind it was so much more than that. You were willing to promise the rest of your life to him in front of a crowd and he was willing to do the same. Sherlock calmly inhaled and exhaled before readying himself. He buttoned his vest correctly, slipped on his shoes, and plucked his tailcoat from the hanger and slipped it on. He looked at himself in the mirror and smiled at with more confidence. John watched as Sherlock collected himself with a proud look. The moment was short-lived, another knock came from the door and Mr. Holmes poked his head through the crack of the door and announced that the wedding was about to begin. Sherlock looked at himself once more in the mirror. His pale eyes flickered to his left hand, in a few moments there was to be a ring adorned on his finger and the perfect woman to call his wife.
A little nervousness still lingered as Sherlock walked down the aisle towards the altar that was placed in the garden behind his parents’ home. The altar was adorned with blue and white flowers, (Y/N) picked them out because blue was one of Sherlock’s favourite colours. His parents walked next to him, his mother clung onto his left arm while his father was on his right. The beautiful sound of Pachelbel’s Canon sang from the instruments of the string quartet. He passed the familiar faces of his friends, family, and soon-to-be family. In the corner of his eye he watched Mrs. Hudson share a box of tissues with Molly. She dabbed the corner of her eyes as she smiled brightly at him. When he reached the end, he watched as Mycroft stood at the altar with a proud look on his face. The brother’s shared a silent conversation. Sherlock’s mother pecked his cheek and his father hugged him tightly before making their way to his side of the aisle and sitting in the front row. He quickly scanned the crowd and smiled. Lestrade looked up at him with a grin and a thumbs up. He watched as John walked down the aisle with your maid of honour. He passed Sherlock and patted his back, not much longer yet.
The breathing exercise that Sherlock practiced was forgotten when he saw you emerge from the house dressed in a beautiful white gown that hugged your figure nicely. He remembered begging you to see the dress but each time you said no and now Sherlock was glad you didn’t let him. He drank up the sight of you in your wedding dress and veil and the sight was worth the wait. Slowly, you were guided by your mother and father who clutched your arm in a tight grip. Rosie walked in front of you next to Archie, who played as ring bearer, while she made a path of rose petals before you. The detective didn’t realize he was holding his breath until John tapped his shoulder asking if he was okay. Sherlock took in a breath and nodded, he swallowed a small lump that formed in his throat and managed to wipe away a tear that somehow escaped his eye. Mrs. Hudson and Mrs. Holmes were blowing their noses into handkerchiefs and dabbing tears from their eyes, Mrs. Hudson having shared the tissues with her. Upon reaching the altar, your mother kissed your cheek and sent Sherlock a warm smile which he returned. Your father let out a sniffle and he lifted your veil to kissed your cheek before he reluctantly gave your hand to Sherlock. He smiled at the detective and patted his shoulder before following his wife to your side of the aisle to sit in the front row.
The music stopped and Mycroft began to read but Sherlock wasn’t paying attention. He just looked at you with adoration in his eyes and a smile plastered on his face. The butterflies in your stomach began to flutter and your heart began to race as you smiled back. It was when Mycroft began to speak about vows that Sherlock felt his nerves get the better of him. You were going first. You didn’t have any paper or notecards to read off of, you simply griped both of Sherlock’s hands and stared into his eyes. You poured your heart and soul with every vow you made. Promising him to stand by him for the rest of your lives, and to care for him no matter how stubborn he was. You didn’t break eye contact with him, and you notice the emotions that were swimming through his colourful eyes with each work that you spoke to him.
There was a moment of silence after you finished, Sherlock stared at you and the guests were all quiet. The notecards that Sherlock had prepared the week before felt heavy in his coat pocket. A bit of worry began to well up in your eyes as he didn’t say anything. Sherlock noticed this and lightly squeezed your hands. Vows were meant to come from the heart, which is what John said, and so they will.
“My entire life I had lived thinking that love was nothing more than a chemical reaction that eventually slowed or blurred anyone’s rational thinking. That it was simply a weakness. In fairness, it’s true, but since you’ve come into my life it seemed as though colour was added to my world and I saw things that I had previously dismissed, more clearly. You taught me how to love when everyone else thought me to be nothing more than a machine, including myself. Yes, love can be a weakness, but it can also be a strength and a motivator. You make me want to be a good person when in life all I wanted to be was the best. I’m honoured to share my life with you, (Y/N), the woman who saved me and understands me better than anyone and could and graciously put up with all the things I do and still love me at the end of the day.”
Sherlock watched as tears fell down onto your cheeks and a big grin was plastered on your beautiful face. Your guests began to pass around a box of tissues and Lestrade had to hold both Molly and Mrs. Hudson because of their crying while he himself teared up as well. Your mother clung onto your aunt and your father covered his face with his hands while Sherlock’s parents hugged each other and smiled through the tears that fell from their eyes. Sherlock blushed at the sight of his words causing such an emotional impact, but he felt proud. He poured his heart out for everyone to hear, but more importantly, for you. You whispered an “I love you” as everyone collected themselves, and Mycroft cleared his throat, “now for the rings.”
Archie stood up with his pillow and stood next to you and Sherlock. Sherlock was the first to go. He repeated the words Mycroft had said and slid the band onto your finger, “with this ring, I thee wed.” You did the same and for the moment you had both been waiting for, Mycroft pronounced you husband and wife. Sherlock didn’t hesitate to lift up your veil, draw you close to him and plant a loving kiss onto your lips and you didn’t hesitate to wrap your arms around his neck and kiss him back. A smile grew on both your faces as you pulled away and heard the crowd clap and cheer. Sherlock beamed lovingly at you before squeezing your hand and walking back up the aisle. Your friends and family threw rose petals as you passed them by with a blush tinting your cheeks. Your heart thumped rapidly in your chest as the moment sunk in, you were finally Mrs. (Y/N) Holmes.
The events that followed the ceremony were perfect, John presented a beautiful best man speech that was by far shorter than the one that Sherlock had for his, which was followed by your first dance with Sherlock as a married couple. Most people would say that marriage is the end of an era, what they didn’t know was the next great adventure that followed. With Sherlock Holmes, adventures never stopped. It was only the beginning of a new chapter, the adventures of Mr. and Mrs. Sherlock Holmes.
Zach asking you to sleepover at his house - Part 4 'sneak peek'
“No one is aloud to see you like that, do you understand me?” Zach growls out, thrusting deep inside of me.
I can only moan out in pleasure. But that answer doesn’t seem good enough for him. Soon I find myself laying flat on my back, on the kitchen table, with Zach hovering above me, a predatory yet mischievous glint in his eyes…
“Dwayne, I don’t think this is how you’re supposed to fish.”
He let out a deep chuckle at your words as his hand reached out, grabbing his beer. “Trust me, sweetheart. This is the best way to fish.”
With an amused huff, you relaxed back against Dwayne’s chest, slowing reeling in the line. “Then how come I never see anybody else fish like this?” You challenged, eyes still locked on the water.
Dwayne took a sip from his beer before he propped one of his feet up on the boat railing to make you sitting between his legs a little more comfortable. “It’s a secret. Don’t tell nobody.” Dwayne answered teasingly. “Now, be quiet and concentrate.”
“Even with Dean’s hands over his gills, Castiel still feels like he can’t breathe. But for the first time in a long time, Castiel doesn’t feel empty. He doesn’t feel that hollow space in his chest. He doesn’t feel numb. He feels full – complete.” - Out Of The Deep
For a prompt, if you want, maybe lance finding out that keith was going to sacrifice himself? I absolutely adore your writing, keep up the awesomeness!! ❤️
You guys ready to get fucking emo?
“Alright, this is it.” Shiro’s voice comes through Lance’s helmet, sounding tinny and distant. Red lands on the chunk of meteor below. It rumbles when the other lions land next to them.
Lance looks out into the emptiness of space. It’s particularly devoid here, with no planets and barely any stars visible. A sensible meeting spot with Lotor then.
“Allura, have you recharged the castle? We need to have wormholes operational in case this meeting goes south.”
“All set, Shiro.” Allura confirms.
“What do you guys know about this Prince?” Matt’s voice comes through. Lance can just make out his figure disembarking the rebels’ ship and walking out onto the meteor.
“He’s slimy and we don’t like him.” Lance answers for everyone. There’s a hum of agreement.
Despite their victory, there has been little time to celebrate. Lotor’s interference and want for a meeting has made things tense. And the Voltron coalition has decided to act quickly, rather than agonise for days about what to do. The more they wait, the more time they give Lotor to perfect whatever scheme this is. The team is still exhausted from their fight and their unease is palatable.
But Lance feels his gut twist for a different reason.
Lance pats Red’s dashboard before he exits and starts to walk towards the castle. He sees Shiro, Pidge and Matt up ahead, as well as Kolivan and some other blades. Lance’s gaze trains on the smallest one, who barely comes up to Kolivan’s bicep, and starts to rush forward. He grabs Keith’s elbow and turns his scowl into a perfected smile.
“Hey man! Fancy seeing you here!” He chuckles. Keith’s surprised expression melts into a fond smile.
“Lance, good to see you’re ok.”
“Of course! Nothing lays a hand on this sharpshooter!” Lance winks and clicks his tongue.
“Of course.” Keith sighs.
Lance lifts his gaze for a moment and meets Shiro’s. His perfected smile falters. Shiro nods. Then turns away.
“We should head on board to form an escape plan.” Shiro announces. The rebels and Blades follow his lead. Lance snatches Keith’s arm again.
“Hey, quickly, do you wanna visit Red? I think she misses you.”
“Wha…? Lance we gotta…?”
“Shiro, I’m just taking Keith to see Red.” Lance ignores Keith’s protests and mumbles quickly into his helmet’s communicator.
“Go.” Shiro replies.
Lance beams and starts to pull Keith away.
“It’ll only take a second! Come one! Or are you too good for her now that you’re a blade?” Lance sneers. That has Keith rising to his taunts. He sneers.
“I don’t think that!”
“Ah, well you better come with me then.” Lance sighs. With a devilish smirk he takes Keith’s hands and starts to run across the rocky meteor surface. It feels good to get his heart rate up and burn through some of the residual adrenaline still in his veins. He laughs and hears Keith chuckle just behind him. Keith starts to pick up his pace and the two race to Red’s feet. Lance wins. Barely. And crashes against Red’s legs.
“You’re legs are longer.” Keith pants.
“My armour’s heavier.” Lance heaves. “Just admit that I’m better.”
“Never.” Keith hisses, but the corners of his mouth quirk into a smile.
“Well I guess we just have to leave it to the ultimate judge.” Lance stands upright and begins to control his breathing. He knocks against Red’s leg and looks up towards her imposing head.
“Hey Red! Which one of us is better?!” Lance shouts. He wraps an arm around Keith’s shoulders and pulls him close. “Me?! Or this reckless asshole?!” He laughs. Keith shimmies out of his hold.
“I don’t think she’ll answer.”
“Oh no she definitely did. She definitely told me to call you an idiot.”
“She’d never do that.”
“Oh really? Well that’s super funny because she totally just did?”
“You’re an idiot.” Keith shakes his head. “Look, I need to…”
“Keith…” Lance’s voice drops low and his facade crumbles. He levels Keith with a serious expression, uncharacteristic of the normally exuberant boy who loves to joke and bat his long eyelashes. It fills Keith with dread. He freezes.
“Keith… before… out there when we couldn’t get past that battleship’s shields…” Lance casts his eyes to the ground. His fingers wring together. “You said you would bring it down. You would handle it. Obviously Lotor got there before you, but…”
He picks up his gaze. Keith cowers under the weight of it.
“What was your plan?”
The question hangs in the air. Lance waits patiently as Keith’s mouth slackens. He opens and closes it, but no noise comes out.
“What was your plan, Keith?” Lance asks more aggressively. He steps in close. Keith scowls.
“Why do you want to know?” He spits.
“Because I think I know what it was. I don’t know if anyone else has, but I think I know what you were thinking and so help me Keith…” Lance’s words are poisonous. His fists shake at his sides.
“If you sacrifice yourself for some stupid…!”
“It wasn’t stupid!” Keith snaps. Lance jumps back.
“We had to get that shield down. If we didn’t then millions of people would have died! I had to do something! I’m not more important than anyone else!” Keith’s chest heaves and his voice cracks. His eyes narrow with determination.
“If I have to die to save others than I’ll do it!”
Lance slaps Keith.
Straight across the face with a deafening clap.
Keith goes cold. He stares at the ground where his vision was knocked until he hears sniffling. He dares to glance up.
Lance holds himself as he trembles violently. Tears stream down his cheeks and weak sobs wrack his thin frame. Keith’s cheek still throbs.
“You are more important.” He cries. “You’re more important to us. You’re more important to me.” He thumps his chest and finally looks into Keith’s eyes. Keith forgets how to breathe.
“Can’t you understand that? Can’t you understand that if you die…” Lance’s voice cracks every which way, but he pushes on. “… You think we could go on? You think Shiro could keep fighting? You think I…”
Keith remembers how to move his feet. He feels like he’ll burst into tears at any moment, but miraculously, he keeps himself from shattering. He steps close to Lance and dares to touch him. His hands move down Lance’s forearms until their fingers entangle. Their foreheads touch. Lance lets out a deep exhale.
“I couldn’t go on, Keith. It would ruin me.” He confesses. Keith squeezes his hands.
“I’ll kill you, Keith. I’ll fucking kill you if you try that shit again.” Lance’s hands move to Keith’s back and he holds him like he might fall. Keith grips Lance’s armour just as desperately. He rubs his face against Lance’s chest and finally lets the tears fall.
“I know you would.”
“I’m not joking. I’ll fucking kick your ass.” Lance sighs. “Or worse… I’ll get Kolivan to ground you.” He weakly chuckles. Keith smiles and laughs with him. He giggles through his tears.
pairing: tom holland x reader, featuring harrison osterfield
word count: 2832
summary: tom’s travelling back home to london with harrison, and he just so happens to be on the same flight as you. sometimes, you find love when you’re least expecting it.
author’s note: thanks for the feedback! sorry it’s taken me a while to send this part out but my uni exams begin soon so updates might come slowly for the next month. hope you like this new part :-)
the plane had only been in the air for a few minutes when tom decided it was safe for him to talk to you again. at the sound of his sweet british voice next to your ear, you felt something inside of you loosening, and your breathing slowly returned to normal.
“once,” he ducked his head to glance out the window at the disappearing skyline, “harrison and i were flying back to montreal from london on new year’s eve. we were close to landing at midnight.”
you turned your head slightly to watch him as he talked.
“it was a really clear night and we could see all the little firework displays along the way. these tiny flares, shooting up and going off below us. one after another.”
the view outside the window went white as the plane pushed through the clouds. you felt your heart pounding and closed your eyes, trying to picture tom’s fireworks instead.
“if you didn’t know what they were, it probably would’ve looked really scary or something – but from the plane, it was sorta nice. they looked pretty, plus we couldn’t hear them so they were just silent, small lights way down below. it was hard for me to believe that they were the same huge explosions of noise from the ground, you know? a matter of perspective.”
you opened one eye.
“is this supposed to help me get over my fear of flying?”
“no,” tom grinned sheepishly, “i was just trying to distract you again.”
“thanks. got anything else?”
“yup,” he sat back, dragging a hand through his curls and leaving it resting in his hair. “a whole plane trip’s worth, actually.”
you tugged on the window cover and pulled it down so the sky was gone from view, ignoring tom’s raised eyebrows. luckily, the seatbelt light above your heads flickered off and the screen embedded into the seat in front of you switched on. tom’s did the same and he reached out, tapping on the touch display.
“huh. they have these in first-class too.”
“i wonder what movies they’re showing.”
tom drew his hand back.
“uhh – don’t bother checking. probably that lame cartoon one that just came out. the emoji movie, i think?” he leant over and switched off your screen. “don’t you prefer my company anyway?”
you shot him an indignant look.
“hey! i happen to enjoy movies about emojis, thanks very much.”
tom rolled his eyes.
“talking emojis? hollywood’s running out of ideas.”
“some of the emojis sing too,” you grinned, enjoying the look on tom’s face.
“please, please don’t tell me that you’ve watched it.”
you held up two fingers.
“you do know it’s meant for under twelves, right?”
“good movies have no age limit.”
“okay, okay. i won’t argue with you on that one.”
you nodded, satisfied with his answer, and turned back to the screen.
“are you sure you don’t wanna watch a movie? i think they’ve got the spider-man remake on here too,” you paused and glanced at tom with a grin, “or is that too childish for you as well?”
tom grabbed your hand, moving it away from the tv.
“okay, for the record, the new spider-man is awesome. but let’s just chat instead.”
suddenly, one of the flight attendants appeared next to your row with an armful of headsets. she carefully leant over the sleeping pregnant woman at the end and smiled at you and tom.
“would either of you like one?”
tom looked at you, and you shook your head. he turned around and gave the lady a charming smile.
“thank you but we’re alright.”
you lifted your backpack up from underneath the seat and unzipped it, rifling around for your earphones.
“just in case we decide to watch spider-man,” you joked, but tom wasn’t paying attention. he was inspecting the small pile of books and magazines you’d pulled out onto your lap with interest.
“you must read a lot!”
“kinda,” you smiled, brushing off a piece of lint from the front cover of your chaos walking book. “i can’t really resist a good story.”
tom reached out, picking up the worn copy from under your fingers. he leafed through the pages carefully, as if they might fall out with the slightest touch.
“have you read this one?”
you nodded sheepishly.
“maybe more than once.”
tom raised an eyebrow and pointed at the dog-eared pages and ripped back cover.
“oka-a-a-y, maybe a lot more than once. it’s probably my favourite novel ever! have you read the series?”
tom looked amused.
“uh, nope. what’s it about?”
“oh, wow – tom, it’s such an amazing story. the main character, todd – he lives in this weird, dystopic world, right? and he meets this girl, viola, and together they go on this freaky adventure and there’s this thing, called ‘the noise’, and it’s always in their ears, and the series goes for three books but the first is the best probably, todd’s the most real in that one, i’m kinda in love with his character, and - ”
tom held up a hand, laughing.
“woah, slow down! you’re really keen on this, huh?”
“yeah, sorry. i get carried away when i talk about things i’m passionate about.”
you blushed and tom shook his head.
“don’t apologise. i totally get it.” he paused and then smiled. “you’re extra cute when you’re excited.”
you flashed tom a small smile and turned away, unable to meet his eyes after the compliment. he exhaled quietly and settled back into the seat while you packed away the books and put your backpack away. pressing your ear to the window cover, you could hear the wind roaring outside as it rushed past the plane. technically, you were afloat – up in the air, thousands of feet above the ground – but you felt steady and secure when you were beside tom.
you opened your eyes, awake all at once. tom’s face was just inches from your own, watchful and quiet with an unreadable expression on his face. startled, you brought a hand to your chest before you registered that your head was resting on his shoulder.
“sorry,” you coughed, pulling away.
the plane was completely dark now, and it was almost silent except for the rumbling of the air all around you. it seemed like everyone had fallen asleep – even the screens set into the back of the chairs had been shut off. you tugged out your arm from where it was wedged between the window and seat, massaging it before glancing at your watch to check the time before realising you had no idea which timezone you were in. running a hand over your head, you snuck a sideways glance at tom. luckily, it didn’t look like there was any drool on his shirt from where you’d lay.
he met your eyes and stuck out a hand, offering you a napkin.
“what’s this for?”
“turn it over.”
you flipped the paper and grinned. tom had drawn a series of largescale emojis in scratchy blue pen.
“so you gave in and watched the movie, then?”
“hard to resist the temptation of animated facial expressions, you know?” tom watched as you tucked the napkin into the top of your bag. “how’d you sleep?”
“okay,” you cut yourself off with a yawn and tilted your head to one side. “don’t you sleep on planes?”
“normally, i do.”
he shook his head and gave you a small smile.
“sorry. i didn’t mean to use you as a pillow.”
tom waved you off and laughed.
“it’s okay. harrison claims i make a very comfortable head-rest, so i’m glad i could help. plus, you looked peaceful.”
“i don’t feel peaceful,” you sighed, twisting in your chair to face him. “is london nice?”
tom looked taken aback for a second but then smiled.
“it is. it’s a beautiful city.” he paused. “you never actually told me why you were going there. may i ask?”
out of all the topics of conversation, this was the one you’d been hoping to avoid. but there was something about tom - something you’d noticed from the moment he’d leant down to help you in the terminal earlier - and it made you trust him.
“i’m actually moving there. to london. to live.”
tom blinked a few times in surprise.
“wow! i – i just sorta assumed you were going on holidays!”
“i wish,” you muttered, and then shook your head. “no, that’s not true either. i’m happy, honestly. i’m just really nervous about the move, i’ve never really been away from my family for more than two weeks and i’ve left everyone i know behind.”
you bit your lip.
“i don’t know how i’m going to survive. the further we get from home, the more nervous i feel.”
tom reached out and took your hand quickly, giving it a squeeze.
“y/n.” you looked up at him and found his brown eyes carefully searching your own. “it’s okay, i’m here. i understand – trust me, i’ve had to face it all before.”
he let out a deep sigh and smiled sadly.
“the best piece of advice i’ve ever gotten was to turn nerves into excitement. you know? it’s really hard at first, leaving the people you love behind. but believe me - going out into the world on your own, while nerve-wracking, is truly awesome. it’s been one of the best decisions i’ve ever made, just taking the opportunity and running with it. if you can find a way to be excited about it, you’ll gain the most! and hey, you’ll be independent and have the chance to be whoever you want, because the only person pressuring you is yourself.”
you looked down at your lap.
“i don’t know… i want to leave, and part of me does feel excited… but the other part is just plain scared of what’s to come.”
there was a silence from tom before he replied.
“being scared is only human. sometimes we have to leave our comfort zone to find the things that make us the most happy in life.”
“tom, i’m going to be all by myself for the first time ever.”
“hey,” he touched your cheek lightly, “you won’t be alone, i promise. i’m going to be there, and so will harrison, and we’re your friends.”
“thank you,” you smiled weakly and tom nodded. “sorry for turning this into a sook-fest.”
“it’s okay,” he shrugged and tugged on a curl of hair that had fallen over his forehead, “like i said – i understand.”
despite tom’s comforting words, you were ready to get off the subject and move on. maybe he was right and london was going to be a great change for you, but it was making you nervous again. both of you lapsed into silence for a while. tom rubbed his eyes, gently letting go of your hand to do so. you let out a breath you didn’t even know you were holding as he started to talk.
“so, that was my big question for you. got any burning ones for me?”
“okay,” you cringed before you’d even formed the words, but your interest had been blooming inside for hours now – since the airport phone call – and you couldn’t help but ask.
“do you have a girlfriend?”
tom’s cheeks reddened, and the smile you caught right before he ducked his head was cryptic – one of two meanings. the bigger part of you is worried that it must be sympathetic and charitable, designed to make you feel less awkward about the question and coming answer, but something else kept you wondering all the same – maybe, just maybe, tom’s expression was something even kinder. something full of understanding, a seal on the unspoken agreement that something was happening right there between the two of you, that it just might be a kind of beginning.
after a long moment, tom shook his head.
you weren’t really sure how to proceed after his answer. it felt like something had changed, but you weren’t sure what.
tom shrugged with a grin.
“haven’t met anyone i want to spend thirty years with, i guess.”
“there must be millions of girls who work on your movies.”
“probably more like a few girls, actually.”
tom shot you a look and you laughed.
“bet none of them are british though. that’s your type, right?”
“don’t really have a type, if i’m honest. unless you count girls with tomatophobia – that’s my one weakness,” tom smiled and leant sideways, bumping you with his shoulder.
“right,” you grinned. “did you have a girlfriend in high school?”
“at my acting school, yeah. she was nice.”
“so what happened?”
tom tilted his head back against the seat.
“i guess what always happens. we graduated, i left for america, she didn’t. we moved on. what about you? ever had a boyfriend? or girlfriend?”
“boyfriend,” you rolled your eyes and tom held up his hands in defence.
“i didn’t know! just making sure.”
“well mr-politically-correct, i had a boyfriend. but he broke up with me, actually.”
“oh. what happened?”
you sighed and mimicked tom.
“i guess what always happens. he got jealous of me being friends with one of his mates, and broke up with me over text.”
“wow,” tom muttered and thumped his fist on the arm wrist. “that’s millenial love at its most tragic.”
“something like that,” you agreed, looking over to find tom watching you closely.
“he’s an idiot, you know that right?”
“that’s true. i guess he was always sort of an idiot, in hindsight.”
“still,” tom replied and you smiled at him gratefully.
your ex had broken up with you right before you’d set the details of your move to london in concrete. you’d never thought about the possibility of what you might have done if you were still in a relationship when making the decision to leave home for another country. would you have reconsidered? or asked your boyfriend to go with you and move in together? probably not. but now, looking at tom, you wondered if you had it all wrong. you wondered if that was because there had been no one in the world you’d liked enough, nobody you felt comfortable with that you’d ask them to come with you to start a new life. you had a sudden fleeting image of tom, appearing on the doorstep of your apartment in a crisp white polo and jeans, holding a bunch of flowers in his hands. the idea made your stomach flutter. you swallowed hard, blinking away the thought.
beside you, tom glanced over at the pregnant lady, still sleeping soundly by the aisle.
“i’ve actually got to use the bathroom,” he admitted, and you nodded.
“me too. i bet we can squeeze past her.”
tom quietly unbuckled his seat belt and half-stood in a jerky motion, accidentally bumping into the seat in front of him. when its occupant didn’t stir, he let out a small breath and manoeuvred past the lady on the end without waking her up. when you’d both managed to make it out of your row, you followed tom as he shuffled down the aisle and towards the back of the economy section. a bored-looking flight attendant in a jump seat looked up from her magazine as you passed but didn’t pay you any more attention.
the ‘occupied’ lights were on above the bathroom doors, so you and tom stood in the small square of space outside. you were close enough to smell that same boy scent on tom’s shirt from before, but not so close that you were touching, exactly. his arm brushed against your own and you were seized by a sudden longing to reach for his hand.
you lifted your chin to find tom looking down at you with the same expression you’d noticed earlier, when you woke up with your head on his shoulder. neither of you moved and neither of you spoke – you just stood there watching each other in the darkness with the engines whirring beneath your feet. it occurred to you that tom might be about to kiss you, and you inched just the tiniest bit closer, your heart beating fast in your chest. tom’s hand skimmed yours lightly and you felt it like a bolt of electricity. to your surprise, he didn’t pull away – instead, he fit your hand into his own as if he was anchoring you there, and then tugged gently, moving you closer.
it almost felt as if you were completely alone – no captain or crew, no rows of snoozing passengers, no one – and you took a deep breath, tipping your head up to look at him.
suddenly, one of the bathroom doors flew open and bathed you and tom in sharp, bright light. a little toddler waddled out, wiping his hands of his overalls as he moved back down the dark aisle.