A non-exhaustive list of things that Adam Parrish loves:
Those Saturdays when his shift begins really
late and he gets to sleep in. It’s even better if he ends up in the Barns on
Friday and stays over. Ronan’s bed is really wide and for some reason it’s
never cold. Many things in the Barns seem to emanate a gentle warmth: beds,
blankets, the floor, sweaters, light. Ronan’s body at night when Adam holds
onto him and buries his face between Ronan’s shoulder blades, the tattoo
radiating heat as hot roots and talons and leaves brush against his skin. It’s
a sort of warmth he never got enjoy as a child.
They share clothes. Not because Ronan takes pity
on him. At least it doesn’t feel like it and Adam doesn’t know whether it’s him
or the world that is changing. It’s a shirt and trackies after Adam takes a
shower in the Barns after work. It’s Ronan tossing him an extra sweater when
they’re curled up on the sofa and playing Superhot. It’s some old parka that
Adam snatches from the coat rack on their way out to see a newborn calf on a
cold morning. It’s darned wool socks Adam finds in a drawer in January, all
worn out and fuzzed up, but almost the right size.
When Gansey brings up Noah. Finally someone
does, Adam thinks and is ashamed that it wasn’t him. The absence of Noah’s
sparkling, fiery, shabby humanity has been eating away everything in the edges
of them and their friendship; it’s a widening singularity inside them that
nobody has been able to address. Not until Gansey mentions his name again.
Ronan is raw and ripped into pieces, barely holding any good days in his hands
as it is. Blue cries and yells and goes to lie down in Noah’s bedroom, a taboo shrine
none of them have dared to visit, pulling Gansey in her wake. Adam finds Ronan
once again in the BMW, the metal vessel of grief. All is terrible then but it
starts to get better after that. They get to talk about him again. Laugh about
all the things they want to remember. Also seize the things they don’t want to
remember. When Blue and Gansey tell Henry about him, Adam doesn’t feel so
resentful because it doesn’t feel like they are giving up on Noah.
After a while, the cards begin to make sense
again. He doesn’t feel the violent current of Gabeswater inside his palms as he
reads them. However, they don’t look like a unclear blur of images anymore,
either. When he spreads the cards on the table in front of him, they align and
form bodies and lines before his eyes; he sees an endless number of golden
ratios, a universe that is a bit more managable. Maura asks him about them as
they are looking at the cards together and he does his best to explain how
sensible and cyclic it is. Maura laughs and wonders aloud how Persephone could
have had such an analysist as an apprentice. Calla smiles drily and piles up
her tea leaves on her saucer. Perfect circles, perfect proportions, her numbers
and her figures. Adam swears he sees Persephone shine through her smile.
The little peculiar dream objects they find on
their walks around the Barns. Sometimes they are Niall’s dream things that
Ronan wants to hold and then discard; look for a while but then put away in
secret hiding places. Every now and then, they stumble upon something that
Ronan dreamt as a child: toy animals and small rodents, flowers that never
wilt, slingshots with an impossibly long range. Adam usually knows immediately when
they find something that came from the younger dreamer’s mind. They are as
beautiful and kind and wonderful as Ronan and when he points that out to his
boyfriend, he gets a sour glare (and later that night, a heated kiss).
Come summer, most of the weight that has been
pressing down his posture all his life is gone. He has graduated and got a full
ride to his number one college. All he has been reaching for for years is now
in his grasp. It leaves so many hours in his days that he doesn’t what to do
with it. An abundance of time unknown to him. First he sleeps and sleeps and
sleeps, but there is only so many days that can be spent dreaming. Especially
now that his reality is so much better than anything his mind could produce.
They run around the estate and take care of Ronan’s hens and sheep. They go out
to Nino’s and Monmouth and 300 Fox Way and everywhere in Henrietta that they
didn’t get to go on their quest. They stay up and watch films and TV series and
make out on the couch. They fight and fight and fight, but never break.
Somehow, the years he lost and never had is something new he’s reaching for.
At times, there’s nothing tender in Ronan and
him. They kiss, they caress and they touch gently, but then there’s another
dimension in their relationship as well. It’s a dimension of sharpness and
power. They refuse to abandon the speed and impact that forged them together by
Gansey’s side and there are days when they still get bruised and bleeding on
empty parking lots. They battle for the Xbox controller and end up rolling on
the floor. They shove and pull each other when they race towards the driver’s
side of BMW. And when Declan and Matthew come to the Barns for summer break,
they have a wrestle season outside in the yard like he’s never seen. Ronan
against Adam is brutal, just the right side of too competitive and he is silently
so thankful that Ronan doesn’t treat him like a broken thing. Matthew is
nothing like his big brother and wrestling him is like engaging in a long,
confused hug that ends in a jovial handshake. Declan starts out cruel and Adam
knows straight away what it is. Their match has a serious tone to it, a study
of character and their love for Ronan. It
takes all he has to fare against a Lynch, but he knows how to get his message
through. After a long scuffle, the tension dissipates and only then is Adam
willing to give up.
There is always a way back for him. Ronan never
pushes him and he never pushes himself, but every time he keeps returning.
Ronan is there on the porch to welcome him to the Barns, but at the same time
Adam can always be sure that their lives go on while he’s away. He is needed
but there’s no sword hanging over his head, just tender hands and endlessly
wondrous days. Ronan and his dreams. Opal and home and safety. A future he gets
to figure out on his own and with his family.
For your prompts, I would love to see number 83 (Peter barfs in the car while Happy's driving him somewhere). Your writing is amazing!
Thanks for choosing this one; I’m pretty wild about it too! It’s going to be pretty short, though. This one lends itself well to something drabble-length.
For once, Peter’s less than thrilled to see Happy idling the shiny black SUV in the pickup loop outside school. He has a headache his meager supply of ibuprofen doesn’t seem to be making a dent in, and lunch is sitting heavily on his stomach. It’s one of the rare days when he’d rather trudge home for a nap than swing around the city. But at least he doesn’t have to swing around the city. At least Mr. Stark’s sent a car for him.
“Hi, Happy,” Peter says as he opens the door to the backseat.
“You got time to drive upstate?” Happy asks.
“Yeah, yeah, I got time,” Peter says. It’s not a lie. He has time. He doesn’t have a lot of homework tonight. He wants to work with Mr. Stark. More than anything else.
But how hard would it be to say you know, I don’t really feel up to it, how about tomorrow? Peter thinks about it. Thinks about how that would be the smart thing to do. But who’s he kidding? He can’t say no to an afternoon in Mr. Stark’s lab. He can work through a headache. Probably.
Peter tosses his backpack into the car and climbs inside. He puts on his seatbelt and grabs his phone, waiting while it connects to the vehicle’s privatewi-fi network.
On Instagram, @ironmanspotter has uploaded a series of photos and videos of Mr. Stark, or his suit at least, doing dive rolls off the Brooklyn Bridge. From what Peter can see in the grainy footage, it looks like the suit is angling left each time it turns sharply out of the aerial stunt, which probably means one boot’s propelling jet is stronger than the other. Peter wonders if he’s going to be assisting with the task of fixing it. He’d be ecstatic out of his mind to be able to lend a hand with a project like that; the prospect of taking a screwdriver to his mentor’s armor is…just, wow.
But then his head starts to throb in a manner that makes his stomach less than happy, and Peter has to look up from his phone and find the tree-lined horizon bobbing above the interstate. He re-evaluates his goals and decides he’ll be ecstatic out of his mind just to make it to the lab in one piece.
Sweat begins to break out on Peter’s forehead, and he can taste the fries he ate hours ago edging into the back of his throat. He presses his temple against the tinted window, hoping maybe the coolness will calm him down. But now that the nausea’s started up, Peter knows well the only thing that’s going to stop it. And he’s determined to last the rest of the drive before retreating off to some rarely-used bathroom in the Avengers facility to chuck up his stomach.
The rest of the drive should be about 40 minutes, if Peter’s sluggish brain can be trusted to remember anything correctly. But he barely makes it 10 before the bottom half of his face threatens to flop into his lap and acidic saliva starts running between his back teeth. Peter sucks in the slowest of slow, deep breaths through his nose. The leather-like scent of the immaculately maintained car does nothing to appease his headache, and makes his throat clench tightly around rising bile.
He should say something. It’s not that hard to say excuse me, I don’t feel well, can we please stop? But even doing that much would require opening his mouth. And they’re on the highway with nowhere to pull over. And Happy has never been Peter’s biggest fan.
But he can’t just sit here either. Peter can feel his stomach sloshing, his jaw trembling. He’s not going to be able to do anything to stop it. His entire face feels icy and boiling at the same time. Sweat drips down his upper lip. Just say something.
Peter gets as far as, “Um,” when he can’t hold onto control any longer. He presses his clammy palm over his mouth to stifle the first belching gag. It’s no help, though, when his undigested lunch starts coming up, sending vomit dripping between his trembling fingers in long strings.
“Oh my god! Kid!” Happy’s shouting at him, looking at Peter hunching over the floorboards in the rear-view mirror.
Peter retches again, unable to control the spasms still bubbling upward through his body.
Happy takes the next exit and spins the car into a Burger King parking lot. He throws Peter’s door open and yanks him out of the car. Peter barely maintains his footing and sprays a slew of stringy fluid over his own shoes.
“Jesus Christ. What am I supposed to do with you now?” Happy’s pacing, scrolling through the contacts in his phone.
“Sorry,” Peter apologizes, hardly able to hear the sound of his cracking voice over the ruckus of his wild heartbeat. He tries to wipe sick off his chin, but his hands are so trashed it doesn’t make much of a difference.
“Why are you calling me?” The voice is unmistakably Mr. Stark, who Happy’s evidently called and put on speaker.
Peter’s face burns with embarrassment.
“He just puked all over my car!” Happy shouts, his temples going red with passionate frustration.
“Ok, ew,” Mr. Stark says. “Take him back home until he…decontaminates.”
“You want me to drive him almost an hour back into the city with vomit all over my backseat?!”
“Um. Yeah? I got bots to clean it.” Mr. Stark replies. “Where are you now?”
Happy rattles off the exit number and adds, “In a goddamn fast food parking lot.” Peter loses the battle with controlling his breath and lurches forward to bring up another pitiful wave. “He’s still at it!” Happy yells.
“Happy,” Mr. Stark says, his all-business tone returning. “Buy him a soda. And take him home.”
“Buy him a soda. Take him home. Ok, bye.” Mr. Stark hangs up.
Happy stands there, shaking and seething for a moment.
“I’m really, really sorry,” Peter chokes, spitting mucousy saliva onto the ground.
“You…hm…” Happy starts, his face still contorted. “What…kind of soda do you want?”
So I noticed that Ghost Nip post going around and remembered I’d written this little thing.
The past week had been a nightmare.
The trio sat all the way at the back of the classroom during the class which was in actuality called Paranormal Studies but had instead picked up the affectionate nomer of Ghosts 101. While both adult Fentons had been called in to teach it as part of the school’s Ghost Defense Initiative, things had started going a lot smoother after Jack was politely asked to never set foot on the grounds again after a particularly enthusiastic demonstration of the Fenton Ectoballista resulted in several missing walls.
You sat there watching Liam play lacrosse. You couldn’t believe how good he had become after he became a werewolf and learned to control his anger. You smiled at him as he looked up at you. Liam and the rest of his pack had become your group to watch over, if they won this battle against the horrifying Peter Hale, you would finally get your wings back.
That’s all you had dreamt about since you lost them several hundred years ago. You waited for Liam and the rest of the pack out in the parking lot. This battle was one you knew you couldn’t be involved with. Without your wings you were powerless. Being there would only hurt you and the pack; not help any of you at all.
Liam smiled at you as they walked up, “Did you learn anything new? Anything that might help us defeat Peter?” he asked before leaning against Lydia’s car next to you. “Nothing, you guys are on your own with this one. I can’t help you this time” You said giving Liam a sad look. “Well, that’s understandable, I don’t want to risk you getting hurt” Liam said pulling you closer. “Alone, you’re all broken. But together, you’re invincible.” You said staring at all of them before you turned and walked away. “Good luck, I’ll see you after” you said before leaving them.
You sat at home staring out the window as it rained. ‘Are my wings really worth it?’ you thought to yourself. You had fallen in love with Liam and you didn’t want to see him get hurt. You jumped up and grabbed your jacket, rushing out the door.
You heard the fighting as you made your way to the clearing. Finally you came into the clearing just in time to see a berserker throw a knife at Liam. You threw your hands up and suddenly noticed you had some power. You were able to slow the scene down making it move in slow motion. You knew what you were sacrificing. Your Wings; you ran, shoving Liam to the ground as everything moved normal again. Liam looked at you shocked; “What are you doing here? You said you couldn’t help us remember?” you smiled at him. “Yeah well, I’ve learned to live without my wings, but I can’t live without you” you defeated the berserkers, Kate and Peter. You were sitting with the pack when Scott looked at you, “Now, since you didn’t stay out of it…You don’t get your wings do you?” You smiled grabbing Liam’s hand. “No, but I’ve gained something much better” you said grinning as Liam leaned over and kissed your sweetly.