slow dancing in a burn

italeteller replied to your post:I think it’s worth pointing out that Nabokov…

if I may derail, this “old authors using current times fanfiction language” thing is absolutely amazing. do you have any more?

Hemingway: drabble challenge, 100 word challenge, yes the title is included in the word count, fight me, angst, sad, baby shoes

F Scott Fitzgerald: idk what I’m doing, lol party fic, I’m supposed to be working on something else right now, the real otp is despair

Virginia Wolfe: stream of consciousness, tw: depression and anxiety, tw: food mention, not sure what else to tag this as

Sylvia Plath: esther is not like other girls, depression, suicide, hurt/comfort, fuck the patriarchy

Edgar Allan Poe: detective au, everyone’s a suspect, darkfic, this was supposed to be satire, I’m not sure what happened,

Shakespeare: historical au, for Lizzy <3 <3 <3, either everybody lives or no on lives I haven’t decided yet, dick jokes, puns, stole this from Marlow not even sorry lmao

Jane Austen: hurt/comfort, fluff, angst, true love, dancing!, slow burn, don’t worry they all get there in the end (:

lovely ; songs i listen to when i’m so full of love that i feel like i could burst.

1. cherry wine - hozier // 2. nothing - lewis watson // 3. you - keaton henson // 4. only love - ben howard // 5. holocene- bon iver // 6. slow dancing in a burning room - john mayer // 7. bones - ben howard // 8. work song - hozier // 9. sweetheart, what have you done to us? - keaton henson // 10. stay - lewis watson // 11. from afar - vance joy // 12. first day of my life - bright eyes // 13. we all die trying to get it right - vance joy // 14. latch (acoustic) - sam smith // 15. cough syrup - young the giant // 16. for emma - bon iver // 17. we found each other in the dark - city and colour // 18.  make it to me (stripped) - sam smith // 19. skinny love (cover) - ed sheeran // 20. let it go - james bay // 21. tenerife sea - ed sheeran // 22. your body is a wonderland - john mayer // 23. hold back the river - james bay

Under Dancing Stars I

I am still obsessed with Cassian and Nesta and also the Bed Sharing-/ Enemies to Lovers-/ Arranged Marriage AU, so I had to write this. It’s super angsty and the plot is basically just a Slow Burn and them drooling over each other or making out. Set in medieval times and everyone’s a knight. Enjoy.

(I also thought it would be fun to throw you right into the story without any explanations- have fun figuring stuff out as you go along!)

Check out my other writing here!


 UNDER DANCING STARS

 Chapter One: The Return

 

Beatrice: I wonder that you will still be talking, Signor Benedick: nobody marks you.
Benedick: What, my dear Lady Disdain! Are you yet living?” 
― William Shakespeare, Much Ado About Nothing

 

Here’s the story of how Cassian and Nesta fell in love.

Their grandchildren will request to hear it one day, when all the years have passed by and their hair has turned white. Winter has covered the lands outside the castle; and sitting in front of a crackling fire, Cassian will take his wife’s hand. They’ll share a smile that quietly asks, do you remember? And when they look at each other they will not see the wrinkles in each other’s faces or the cane Cassian has to use to walk by now- they will see each other as they once were when they first met, a willful girl and a boy with the promise of a storm in his eyes.  

It’s a messy story, Cassian will say. Full of prejudices and mistakes.

But a story worth telling, Nesta will add. And squeeze her husband’s hand. You’ll let some parts out, right?

He will raise her hand to his lips and press a kiss to her skin. Just the parts that belong only to us, my darling.

***

“I know you’re nervous about the race”, Elain said. “But you don’t need to get so worked up.”

“Worked up? Me?” Nesta threw her hands in the air and proceeded to pace back and forth in the small stable they were standing in. “I am perfectly fine! The very picture of calmness! There is nothing that could interrupt my current state of collection and serenity!” She stopped in front of Duren’s box, her mare dancing lightly on the spot. “You’re the one that’s nervous”, she murmured, and gently stroked the horse’s white fur. Duren lowered her head. She had been given to Nesta on her nineteenth birthday, and ever since then, Nesta had loved her with all her heart. Had spent hours and days on Duren’s back, riding through the endless woods and along the cold streams of the northlands.

“I understand”, Elain implored. “It’s stressful. All those people you haven’t seen for years- then there’s father- and Feyre, of course”-

“Feyre seems to handle herself very well.”

A stable boy entered the stables, visibly nervous. Nesta glared at him. “You again?”

“I’m sorry for interrupting your conversation, my Lady!”, he blurted.  “I have been told to inform you that the races are about to begin, and I can fetch a servant for you- if you want me to, that is- to bring out your racer to the starting line.”

“Go, go!” Nesta waved her hand in impatience. “I will do that myself. How much time is left?”

“Fifteen minutes, my Lady!”, the boy stammered. “Are you sure you don’t need a servant?”

“Positive. Now off with you.” The boy ran out outside as if stung by a bee.

“Be nicer, Nesta”, Elain pleaded. “He was scared of you!”

Nesta opened the door to Duren’s box. She was already saddled up, ready to be led to the race ground. “The goal is that there are all scared of us, Elain.”

“Why are you like this?”, Elain asked, growing desperation in her voice. “That is a horrible thought! Why would you even say something like that?”

Nesta turned to lead Duren out of the stables. “So that we might not share Feyre’s fate.”

“Feyre is marrying Rhysand, a man she loves. The future High Lord of the Night Court.”

“Feyre is nineteen. She knows nothing of men, or love, or anything in life, concerning that matter.”

“And you do?”

Flashing images popped up in Nesta’s mind, a hand grabbing her wrists, a body pinning her down. A bloody knife. She shoved them all away. “I know enough.”

Elain hurried after her. They walked through the crisp morning air, the scent of wet leaves and fires carried over to them by the wind. The courtyard was almost empty except for some busy servants. Everyone had to be at the race grounds already.

“Nesta”, Elain panted when she had caught up with her. “Just talk to me. Just tell me what’s wrong.”

“Nothing is wrong”, Nesta answered through clenched teeth. There the race grounds were; there the hundreds of noblemen stood, all elaborate dresses, adorned hats and dashing suits; drinking, laughing, betting on the winner.

“It is about father, isn’t it? It’s that thing you will not tell me about, that stupid thing that caused your fight years ago-“

“Yes!” Nesta halted, and whirled around to her sister. “Yes! Of course it is! I have not been to the royal court since I was nineteen because of that thing, and I was forced to live locked up in some cold mansion in the north! I did not get to see you share your first dance as an eligible woman, I did not see Feyre get engaged, I was the one blamed when I was not the one that started it”- Nesta stopped herself. That was too much. Elain could never know about Thomas.

She gathered herself, straightened. “I was isolated from your lives”, she said coolly. “And now that father has decided he wants to marry me off, I have suddenly become presentable again. You must see that’s hard to accept.”

Elain grabbed her hand. “Then tell me what it is that separated us”, she begged. “Tell me why you were sent north three years ago. I will not judge, I will not think badly of you, I simply want to understand!”

“No”, Nesta said and continued walking towards the starting line, where the other racers were already waiting with their horses. “All you need to know is that were it not for you and Feyre, I would not manage to be here.”

“You can always talk to me, you know that.”

Nesta breathed out. “I do.”

“And at least you love racing. This day can be fun for you.”

Nesta shook her head to clear her thoughts. “You’re right. It will be fun. Elain”- she squeezed her sister’s hand- “I truly am thankful for everything you do. I know I may seem harsh. I am trying. It’s all so much- my first day back in Velaris, my first day back at court…I am lucky I have you.”

Elain swallowed. “That’s good”, she said, but in her eyes lay all the worries in the world.

There was no time for them to talk anymore; Nesta was led to her own starting position by an organizer where she mounted her horse. She briefly greeted the girl next to her, Countess Amalia of the Autumn Court- she’d been invited to her birthday dinner once, Nesta recalled. The spot on her left was still empty. At least she had not been the last one to arrive.

“Lady Nesta”, Amalia whispered. “Is it true? Are you back from the north?”

Nesta smiled thinly. “Apparently.”

“Are you terribly excited for your sister? I would die! She must be in heaven!”

”Do not worry. Last I saw her, she was eating breakfast.”

Amalia laughed. “Oh, I can’t wait for you to join my tea parties again. You were always like a breeze of fresh air with all those uptight princesses and ladies. Are you cold? I am so cold; I hate horseback-riding, and I will surely finish last. My mother forced me to participate.” Amalia sighed. “But that is the way of life. Mother commands, and I do her bidding. I am much more looking forward to the real race later. The Noble’s races are not the same thing.”

What Amalia said was true: this race- called the Noble’s race- was simply in jest, something for the young Lords and Ladies to compete with each other. Nesta had loved taking part in it before she was sent north; it was the only thing she had really looked forward to when her father had told her she would come back. Aside from living with her sisters again.

“You were sorely missed, though”, Amalia continued. “You did win the Noble’s races almost each year, did you not? The only one to challenge Rhysand and Cassian.”

“Right”, Nesta said, a little uneasy. “Where is he, by the way? I have not seen him yet.”

“The Crown Prince?”

“No.” Nesta adjusted her gloves. “The other one. Cassian.”

“Oh, he must be here any minute. He’s won each race ever since you’ve been gone. He certainly won’t miss out on this one.”

“He has?” Nesta eyed Amalia doubtfully.

The Countess laughed again. “That’s right, I almost forgot about that little feud of yours! Are the two of you still enemies?”

Nesta’s felt a flush on her face. “We’re not enemies. I mean, I don’t know what he thinks about that subject.”

“Just ask him yourself”, Amalia said and nodded her head at someone behind Nesta’s shoulder. “He is riding our way.”

If Amalia had not pointed out that Cassian was nearing the starting line, Nesta would have figured it out by the sudden cheers and claps among the spectators. He had to be the clear favorite among the contesters.

Her heart beat faster, and not because of the High Lord and his family that took their places on the high balconies right now- no, because she hadn’t thought this through at all. What would she say to Cassian? Would he ignore her? Insult her? Should she insult him first, just to get a head start?

Nesta glanced over her shoulder. The sight of him hit her like a brick. He was taller, to begin with, and older: everything seemed broader, his chest, his arms- and his hair was longer, too, tied back behind his head. He seemed in thought; didn’t notice the cheers, the crowd, or her. Her stupid heart stuttered for a second.

“Cassian”, she said quickly when he had taken his position next to her. She’d meant to say something clever. All she could think of was his name.

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we didn’t get the chance to become what we wanted but that’s okay because tonight 
I could have set the sky on fire and slow danced as it burned, and you would’ve drifted out of my mind, just like smoke
and I was never the salt of the earth, brave girl I wanted to be, 
but I never stopped choosing peace 
even when I felt like hell, and I think one day, peace will conquer all the thoughts of you 
so I think I’m just going to keep slow dancing,
watching the fire, because what else is there to see
—  laceerainspoetry, Smoke & I
#TeachMe

“I could teach you.”

And Sherlock clears his throat.

Looks at the ground.

Tries to work out where, precisely, that suggestion came from- Since he certainly hadn’t meant to offer his teaching services today.

Molly’s blinking up at him, her expression startled. His heart is thudding rather loudly in his chest- So loud that he feels an odd terror she’ll be able to hear it. That she’ll be able to tell that, whatever his attempts at nonchalance, his last offer was far from casual. The urge to babble under her gaze is becoming almost overwhelming but he tamps it down, makes himself look at her-

When he speaks next, his voice is surprisingly even.

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the fire
slowly burned
around us
like the whiskey
that we drank
to ignore it.
we were always drunk,
not drunk on love
but drunk on the idea
that somehow
we could make it work.
let’s confess that
you can shift your gaze
away from the flames
as much as you please,
but you cannot
avoid the smoke
as you gasp for air.