Eyyyyy! I'd love to see a reaction of Sole giving the companions a present! Thanks :)
Thank you @mustinvestigate for betaing!
“Oh wow, SoSu.” Preston murmured. “How did you know?”
The dog barked, tugging at its collar, itching to go greet her new owner. She whined at SoSu, scratching at the ground impatiently.
“Know about what?” they said. When Preston didn’t respond, they gave the pouting dog a quick pat on the head. “You always look so lonely while you are out on your patrols, and Dogmeat is either with me or being lazy by Mama Murphy, so it seemed like an obvious solution.”
“Wow, I-I don’t know what to say,” Preston said, holding his rifle close.
“If you don’t feel ready for something like this, I can find another owner. I’m sure there are plenty of people she would be happy with,” SoSu said.
“It’s a she?” Preston asked hopefully, remembering a flash of brown fur.
“Yeah. Otherwise things have really changed since I was on ice.”
Preston smiled slightly, eyes still on the dog. He wasn’t sure of the breed, but it kinda looked like a mix of whatever Dogmeat was and the feral mutts that attacked anything moving. This dog was fully furred, and her tail was wagging at the thought of attention.
“Hold this for me, will you?” he said, absentmindedly giving SoSu his laser rifle. They released their hand from the dog’s collar and she came bounding at Preston. He was immediately buried in doggy kisses and nuzzles, when he had a quick flash of his own dog that had been lost at Quincy. She had been five years old. Just had pups.
That thought lasted for barely a moment as he looked back at the canine in front of him. She had the same brown eyes.
“I think I’m going to name you Abbie Junior.”
“May I open my eyes now?” Danse said, shifting his weight from one foot to the other. If he didn’t maintain ideal visual acuity, enemies of the Brotherhood could sneak up on them at any moment.
“Yes!” SoSu replied, taking their hands from Danse’s face.
He wasn’t sure what to make of what he saw.
It was Power Armor, that much was clear. The exterior shell was the area that surprised him.
It was pink. Very pink. In fact, it surprised him that such a color was still available for use. The shade of magenta covered every single spot visible on the metal except the eye slits. Where the pink didn’t dominate, flowers did. There were roses, daffodils, daisies and lilies scattered across the bodice. To top it all off, there were two words written in the middle of the chest in beautiful calligraphy.
The phrase was ostensibly referring to potting flowers, but Danse was just overwhelmed by the sheer amount of attention this would draw in battle. How could anything like this be functional? Not only was it artwork, something not to trod through mud and grime, but it would be ruined in a matter of a few missions. He steeled himself, preparing to give SoSu an honest assessment of the gift.
He was interrupted by laughter.
“Oh God,” they managed through the tears. “Oh God, you should’ve seen your face!”
They laughed for a good five minutes, while Danse stood there awkwardly, face reddened by the poor joke.
“You know that garage we visited a while back?” they finally said. “With the Atom Cats? This is their ‘Party Armor’.”
Danse clenched his jaw. “How could I forget? You practically became one of them.”
“Oh, don’t be like that,” they replied. “They’re quirky, sure, but they’re fun.”
Danse just shook his head and went about his business, ignoring SoSu whenever they tried to talk to him.
It wasn’t until a few days later, when SoSu suited up for a mandatory scouting mission, when it was Danse who was laughing.
After all, he had been a recruit once.
“Oh, you have caught me in my deepest love! How art thy to repay your genteel gift?” Deacon exclaimed, turning over the copy of The Fugitive, by Marcel Proust, in his hand.
SoSu just rolled their eyes and said: “Lord, what a fool this mortal be! Thou not needst to reciprocate.”
“Sure, I mean, we exist only by virtue of what we possess, right?” Deacon said, obviously trying to cover up a smirk.
SoSu’s jaw hung open. They were sure that Deacon hadn’t read The Fugitive yet. He’d never quoted it before, and she had never seen him reading it when they camped for the night.
“No…” they said, processing their thoughts. “No, you can’t have read it already! I was sure!”
Deacon just glanced down and spotted a comfortable chair. There he sat for the rest of the afternoon, reading through the lengthy text. He would often ask SoSu questions to what a certain word meant, or what a phrase suggested. What he didn’t say was that he loved the gift. He hadn’t actually read it before. He had, however, found a reference text that included a certain quote from the book.
A few days later, SoSu found a few of their favorite foods, along with a copy of their favorite holotape game that they were sure they had lost a few months ago in their pack. They didn’t say anything to Deacon, but there was one evening when they played a holotape game while Deacon flipped through the pages of his new book, not paying the slightest attention to them.
“What kinda shite is this?” Cait demanded, holding up the pink dress.
“Well, I saw you looking at the old magazines with the dress models and I thought you might like to have one of your own,” they said, wringing their hands. “I mean, if you don’t want it -”
“Of course, I don’t want it!” she sneered. “What do I look like a fuckin’ fairytale princess to you?”
“No, Cait, you know I don’t look at you like that.”
“Just leave it on the bed, I wanna burn it meself.”
SoSu just pursed their lips and quietly closed the door on their way out. Cait stared at the dress for a while, lightly stroking the soft cloth before balling it up in her fist. Why did she have to ruin everything? Why couldn’t she just accept a gift like normal person?
The familiar burn of tears threatened behind her eyes and she headed out the door to find one of the Bobrov brothers to help her forget.
‘Well, aren’t you the happy homemaker?” Nick drawled, putting out his cigarette. The last time he’d seen one of those had been when Jenny insist he dress better. She had practically ironed a hole in his shirts by the end of the ordeal.
“Laugh it up all you want, but you are going to be the sharpest dressed detective Diamond City has ever seen!” they exclaimed, holding up one of his spare trenchcoats. “I put in new ballistic weave so that you have a better chance of staying in one piece, and I patched in a few of the holes. And, obviously, I found an iron.”
They shook it in front of him before setting it down on his desk. They quickly jogged upstairs and hung the outfit on the dresser before returning downstairs, latching onto Ellie and chatting excitedly about the new discovery.
Nick smiled, watching the animated conversation. It wasn’t often he received a present, and those were mostly from Ellie. He didn’t know why they bothered getting anything for his ugly mug, but he wasn’t about to complain.
“You’re giving this, just giving this?” MacCready stammered. “To me?”
SoSu just smiled and nodded her head, closing his fingertips around the pristine copies of Grognak the Barbarian. There were three volumes, all first editions. He smoothed his thumb over the smooth colored paper, a bubble of excitement rising in his chest. He hadn’t had these kind of comic books since he was a kid and those were all tattered, half-illegible copies from Little Lamplight. In fact, that was one of the texts the older kids taught them to read by.
“You mentioned it when we walked by Hubris, and I remembered I had kept these in my safe at home. So, well, I thought you might like them.”
“He-Heck, yes!” he said, gripping them tightly now. They still had the glossy finish.
SoSu just smiled as he found a comfortable place on the red sofa. The crooning of Magnolia’s singing barely registered in MacCready’s mind as he sat there and devoured the comic books to his heart’s content. Meanwhile, SoSu sat beside him, allegedly checking through their PipBoy’s inventory, but really just enjoying the expression on their normally cynical friend’s face.
“Ma’am/Sir, there is no practicality in the exchange of items for emotional benefit.” X6 said, looking distastefully at the brightly colored package.
“This isn’t about practicality, X6,” SoSu replied, pushing the package toward him on the table. “It’s about friendship.”
“Friendship is merely a social construct in which -”
“Just open it.”
X6 twisted his lip, but proceeded in opening the crudely wrapped ‘gift’. In a methodical manner he took out a knife, to SoSu’s dismay, and proceeded to slice it open.
The contents were… unsettling.
It was a limited edition box of Fancy Lads Snack Cakes, in the flavor ‘Atomic Apple’. It had pictures of faded cowboy hats scattered along its perimeter, with rustic lettering to top it all off.
Instantly, fear coursed through him. The Institute didn’t accept weakness. He had been too careless. To have any favorites or particularities could prove disastrous.
SoSu just stood there, smiling at him. That slowly faded as they read the expression on his face.
“What’s wrong?” they asked, ripping tiny cuts in colored paper that had been sliced so precisely.
He opened his mouth to reply, to say he could not accept this gift, that it wasn’t necessary, that it was silly. As he went to do so, he noted the crestfallen look on his friend’s face. His friend.
He could risk a little. For them.
So he bit back his words and lifted his lips a little, as he saw them do so often.
“Nothing, Sir/Ma’am,” he said, grabbing the box. “I believe the proper response is: thank you.”
“Oh, zis is a wonderful gift!” Curie exclaimed, clutching the box in her hands. “What is it exactly?”
SoSu chuckled and took the box from her hands and opened the lid to reveal an array of scientific materials. There were beakers, a pair of goggles, a few powders and several other things that SoSu couldn’t identify. It wasn’t professional quality; for some reason, she couldn’t find many scientific materials around the Commonwealth.
“Oh! This is absolutely amazing.” Curie said. “Everything here is what I need. Thank you so much, SoSu!”
Curie hurried off, presumably to find a place to set up the kit. Also, SoSu knew, to go talk to Tinker Tom. Those two had quite the unlikely friendship. Come to think of it, he probably wouldn’t be happy with SoSu when he found out. The pair talked about science almost daily, and experimented as often as they could. The only time Tom was calm was around Curie. It was adorable.
The more they thought about it, the more they realized they had screwed up. That really kicked in when they heard a whisper yell coming their way:
Yeah, time to go.
“You have brought me milk of human kindness?” Strong bellowed, reaching for the bottle SoSu held.
“Whoa, there buddy, this isn’t the milk of human kindness. This is just milk. You drink it,” they said, shielding the bottle from his grasp. “In fact, this is Brahmin milk.”
“And you…give this, to me?”
“Yeah, buddy, it’s a gift.”
“I no give gifts, only trade.”
“It’s free, Strong. You don’t need to give me anything.”
Strong reached for it hesitantly before shaking his head.
In the spirit of Halloween, how about a destiel AU where one of them hits on the other and compliments him on the great cop costume, not knowing that the other one is a REAL cop and very much on duty right now xD I don’t know where it goes from there, but I like to imagine the idea.
Cas probably shouldn’t have grabbed a third pot brownie.
But they were so damn delicious. And yeah, maybe it was the weed talking, but Cas was hungry. That’s one of the things you were supposed to do at these kinds of parties, anyways, right? Eat food and socialize?
Well, that and remark at everyone’s clever (and offensive) Halloween costumes. But seeing as Cas wasn’t good at socializing, especially in the lame costume of a mime, he thought he’d continue with the former: eating. Food was safe, food was good.
Weed was good.
Cas had forgotten what it felt like to relax, so although he’d grumbled about Balthazar dragging him away from his grad work, he was kind of glad he’d agreed.
It was nice to be outside his room, and even nicer to be sitting outside on the back porch of some random guy’s house, munching on a brownie. Music pounded from within, a throbbing beat that vibrated the floorboards, but it was quiet here where Cas sat alone, staring out at the distant streetlights with half-lidded eyes.
The night was warm and misty, and as he finished his brownie, he grinned at the thought of them all drifting through clouds. The weed kicked in more strongly, and his cheeks tingled while his muscles pulled into a smile.
Leaning back against the railing, he beamed out at the night, and didn’t register that the music had stopped until the slider door behind him opened and a man stepped out.
Cas hummed appreciatively. The man was young and dressed in a tight police uniform.
“Hey, officer,” Cas said.
“Hey, there, Mr. Mime. How ya doin’ out here? Is it just you?”
“Mm, yup. Jus’me. Doin’ good. Real good.” Cas giggled and then couldn’t stop. His second brownie had finally caught up to him, and he was helpless to keep the giggles at bay.
The man squinted down at him. “You okay?”
Cas nodded, still laughing. “Good! Haha, I’m fine! Just some haha, delicious brownies! You should try one, haha!”
The man’s lips quirked as he raised an eyebrow. “Yeah, I don’t think so.”
“Why not? Haha, it’s not against the law, officer.” Cas licked his lips, the giggles finally tapering off. He gave the other man an obvious once-over. “I like your costume. It’s um. Very sexy. Looks very authentic.”
The man smirked. “Probably because it is.”
Cas blinked, but was slow to comprehend. “Uh. What?”
“I’m actually a police officer. And I’m on duty, so no pot brownies for me, unfortunately.”
So, this old lady in a motorized cart comes up to my register and she’s wearing a tie-dye shirt with a picture of Cookie Monster with rasta dreadlocks and the caption “Munchies”, and I’m thinking “Okay, I’m not sure if this woman knows her shirt is a pot reference. I mean, you’d think she’d HAVE to know, right? Pot-smoking grannies are a thing, I’ve known them. But maybe she just thinks it’s a funny Cookie Monster shirt? I’m thinking 50/50 chance she knows.”
And then I see she’s about to buy ANOTHER IDENTICAL Cookie Monster munchies shirt. So, now I know she didn’t buy the first one at some tacky head shop, she bought it right here at good old all-american wallyworld. And when I joke that she must have liked her shirt a lot to get another one, she tells me that it’s our last one and she looked really hard for it because she’s getting it for her “little granddaughter” who lives across town.
…I mean, the shirt is in an adult size, so there’s a chance her “little granddaugher” is 22, but that’s the point where I think “The likelihood that this woman has no idea this is a pot shirt just rose to 80%. Either that or she’s fucking with me.”