Another face appearing in Mark’s facecam, taunting smirk overlaying a clueless Mark, Jack disappearing in a cloud of static only to reappear in.. Wade’s? But no, that’s not Jack… Bob frozen, picture distorted, Wade is GONE.
The screen goes black. You sit in shock.
The screen suddenly explodes with color and movement, voices through your headphones making you jump.
Holy. Shit. This edit consumed my brain. I’ve spent the last 3 days working on it, at all hours, and even had multiple dreams about working on it long after I want to sleep.
Also, excuse my questionable writing. I wanted this to be a gif but then I thought how cool it would be as a video edit. But after staring at Premiere Pro for about 5 hours, I fled back to the safety of Photoshop and made what you see now. A tiny bit of written narrative to make up for what’s missing with visual cues.
(Gifs take from: S̺͍͉͔͉̞̪Ḁ̸̰̮͝Y̶̪ ̳͇̭͍̥̭͉ͅG̕҉̡̦̲O̤̫͖͎̗͜͞ͅÒ̴̬̠̺̪̥͉̳͉̥͝D̨̺̦̯͙͙͔̯͚͠B̸̬̻̝͉͍̻̀͝Y҉̫̝̖̹̝̠͠E̲̩͟͝ͅ,
HORROR. and THE MYSTERIOUS SCREAMING TRASH CAN ¦ Prop Hunt #41)
(bc I need to make up for the langst I posted last night so here’s so comfort and a little bit of hurt. This is just Shiro’s, the other ones will be up soon. The only warning is a depiction of a panic attack.)
1. Lance winced as Shiro cut into him with words like he was expertly wielding Keith’s bayard. He would’ve found it funny how dad-like he was being, except: a) probably would cause Shiro to bail him out more, and b) it wasn’t very funny at all.
“Don’t you see how childish you’re being! This isn’t just serious, this is a matter of life or death, and your antics cannot get in the way. At the end of the day, do you want to be responsible for someone’s death?” The question sent a wave of nausea through Lance, and he was almost pulled off his feet by a wave of static that clouded his mind as something inside his chest burst. He grabbed his chest in alarm. His breathing was quickening. His chest was on fire. Oh god. Oh god. He curled inwards. Trying to protect himself.
“…” He tried to speak but no words came out, just harsh breaths as he lent against the wall, staring upwards through tears at Shiro who was frozen in fear.
“…Lance? Oh. Um… fuck.” If Lance was in any state of mind, he would have never let Shiro go for swearing in front of him, but as it was, it made Lance’s breath speed up. Shiro approached him like he would a possible hostile alien, slowly and with his hands outstretched. “Okay, Lance, if you can, put your arms around me and follow my breaths. Is that okay?” His voice was low and non-threatening, and in response Lance nodded slowly. His hands shaking as Shiro sat next to him, putting his hand on Lance’s arm. Shiro started taking audible, slow breaths. Lance winced as this effort made his breathing uneven, alternating from barely controlled slow breaths to shaky shallow ones.
“Thanks.” He choked out. Shiro shook his head.
“Don’t talk, just focus on the breathing.” Lance had enough humour to roll his eyes at him, and melodramatically breathed in and breathed out, causing Shiro to laugh, before his smile melted into a concerned frown. “I’m so sorry Lance.”
“Don’t be. You’re right, of course.” Lance looked down, not willing to meet Shiro’s eyes.
“Just because you were goofing off doesn’t mean I should have said that. It was way out of line. I just –” Shiro trailed off.
“I’m scared too.” Lance responded quietly. “I know. I know that this is a life-or-death thing, but I just can’t think about it. I’m not like you, or Keith, or Allura. I have to distract myself. If I think about for one second someone else dying on my account I just –” Lance’s breath started to quicken again, and Shiro stopped him, beginning the audible intakes and exhales of breath once more. Lance found his voice again. “You’re good at that. Unsurprisingly.”
“Well, thank Coran actually.” Shiro smiled as Lance scoffed. “No really, apparently they’re quite common for Alteans as well as humans. I still get them occasionally, but they were really bad when, you know…” Shiro trailed off before gathering his thoughts once more. “Listen. Are you alright?”
Lance laughed nervously.
“Yeah, of course buddy, don’t worry about it.” He patted Shiro’s arm, got up from the ground and started to walk away when he felt Shiro’s metal arm on his shoulder.
“Really. We all deal with trauma differently, and I’m worried. These coping mechanisms are all fine and good until they start hurting you and other people.” Shiro was staring down at him and Lance shrunk under his worry. Of course Shiro was worried about the others.
“I’m really sorry I’ve been a pain.” He laughed, rubbing the back of his head in a mockery of sheepishness. “I’ve been distracted but don’t worry, to quote our lord Efron, I’ll get my head in the game.” Shiro’s frown did not disappear. “Seriously, dude, don’t worry.” Lance smiled.
“Just, if you need to talk, please do. Whatever problems you have are important, not just for the team’s performance, but for your health as well. Okay? And if you can’t talk to me, talk to Hunk, or Pidge, or even Keith.” Shiro insisted, gesturing emphatically as Lance rolled his eyes. “Please.”
Lance’s face softened, his mask melting away.
“I’m just so scared. What if I never see my family again?” His already tear-filled eyes began brimming once more. “And I’m so scared that I’ll mess up everything, I mean, how the hell can I compare to you guys? Keith’s an amazing combatant, Coran and Allura are the best at strategies, you’re a great leader, Hunk’s an awesome engineer, and Pidge is just a genius!” Shiro stared at Lance as tears spilled down his cheeks.
“I’m so sorry I didn’t notice.” He pulled his hands over his face. “God, and I’m supposed to be the leader.” Shiro straightened up, looking at Lance. “I can’t express how sorry I am. I forget, I suppose, that you’re children. But know we’re all terrified; and know that we couldn’t do it without you. Because your joking does help, Lance, it breaks the mood and reminds us why we’re fighting - for our humanity. You’re important.”
Lance stood in shock. He wiped the tears off his face.
“Gosh Shiro, you’re such an old man!” He started laughing.
Shiro crossed his arms and stared at Lance. His frown didn’t reach his eyes.
“Come on you youngin, we’ve got training to do.” He walked out of the room, shaking his head. Lance smiled. Maybe things were alright, even if he was just saying it to pacify him. Still. It counted.
Summary: Bucky finally finds himself able to live at the
compound with the team, but finds it difficult to repress his feelings for his
new very shy and gentle teammate.
Word count: 2,044
Warnings: Swearing as always
NOTES: feedback is really appreciated, sorry it took a while
and sorry it’s a lot of information.
“Miss (y/n), Mr. stark requests your presence in the
conference room immediately.”
A voice jerked you out of a blissful slumber, one filled
with fantasies of how tonight’s date would go with Bucky. You groaned and
rolled over, peering at the red screaming numbers of the clock.
“Tell him I’m on my way.” You mumbled back to the AI,
luckily though he caught it and left you at peace. Your voice sounded slightly
scratchy and robotic, as if static was clouding the used to be clear audio that
was your man made voice.
You lazily stumbled out of bed, throwing on the nearest
clean- or semi clean- shirt and pants and made your way down to the conference
When you arrived, all the avengers stood like a pack of
wolves around a table, pointing angrily at different areas on an electronic
map. It wasn’t long until tony noticed you, and spoke up, earning the attention
of all other heroes. “Morning sleeping beauty.”
“Good morning.” You replied, but your voice had gone almost
completely robotic, causing your hand to shoot up to your throat in worry. Everyone’s
eyes were wide and concerned; all except Tony’s who simply smirked.
“Ah, I was afraid this would happen.” He pulled a small box,
almost resembling an altiode tin out of his pocket and opened it, taking out a
small chip. “Not to worry, iv thought of everything, as usual.”
He walked up to you and without warning, turned your head,
moved your hair, and plunged the small square behind your ear.
“I created this little port back here for upgrades, that way
surgery isn’t always necessary.”
He stepped back and motioned you to try it out.
“Thanks tony.” You tried, and it was clear, yet it seemed
all eyes were still wide on you. “What?” you asked.
And that’s when you heard it, it wasn’t your voice, it was Tony’s,
clear as day.
“Please don’t tell me this was your intention, when you said
you updated her software.” Steve mumbled.
“Tony! What happened, did you give me your voice!” you
“Calm down, calm down. No, although I’m sure you’d love that.”
He hurriedly tried to explain. “Think of someone else; think of their voice,
“What do you mean think of someone else?!” you yelled in
frustration, and your sure if anyone closed their eyes they would think tony
was having an argument with himself. “Why?!”
“Think of someone else, someone’s voice, just try it.” He
You furrowed your brows but then began thinking of the first
person that popped into your head. Unfortunately between your worry and anger
that person was still Tony, and you had to force your mind to navigate to
Your mind went straight to Bucky, you wanted to pretend it
was because he was staring at you from across the room, eyes turned in concern,
but you knew it was because he was always on your mind.
He was like malice on cheap wallpaper, he was always there
and his presence, his thought, his being clung to your mind. You concentrated
on his voice, its low hum, its warm vibrancy, and you found yourself
You mumbled and stuttered until actual words formed, and
luckily not a robotic, or stark tone.
“I swear to god if you don’t fix this-“you stopped abruptly.
Your voice, it was exactly how you imagined it. It was Bucky’s voice, crystal
clear, so much so that a few members of the team looked back at Bucky to be
sure he hadn’t said anything. His eyes were wide and his face was drawn into an
almost awe struck expression
“There you go!” tony cheered.
“Now what! I want to sound like me!” The tone of your voice was still low, and you
had to remind yourself that Bucky wasn’t actually saying anything.
“Just think about your normal voice it’s not that hard.”
You huffed and forced your thoughts on your own voice.
“why did you make it this way in the first place.” You
questioned, surprised to find your voice in its normal tone.
“You lost your powers.” He sighed, and then quickly
continued as your eyes narrowed. “- which was a good thing for your health and
all, but it made you pretty useless on the field.”
“I was never on the field anyway.”
“Yeah, yeah I know, but I had always planned you to be,
you’re a smart kid, I want you to be with us out there.” He paused and fished a
small remote device out of his pocket, “here, this will hopefully help with all
the controls, the thinking part is more of a last result.”
You took the remote from his hands, and peered down at the
light up touch screen.
“What could I even do with this on the field?”
“Your new vocal cords allow you to copy anyone’s voice that
you hear. This will be perfect paired with a little hand to hand combat
training from Natasha.” He glanced at the red head, who glared at him, then
back to you with a smirk. “you can talk to an opponent, get his vocal
frequency, take him out, then easily talk through his comms.”
He looked damn proud of himself, only causing Steve’s
annoyed expression to deepen.
“and what if that ‘opponent’ is speaking a different
language.” Steve interjected.
“Oh!” he grabbed the device from your hands, and fiddled
around with it after typing in four different security codes. “There, speak.”
You felt like a dog but did anyway.
“Jo të bisedoni me mua si im një qen.” You
covered a hand over your mouth. (“dont talk to me like a dog”)
“Kjo eshre ajo qe gjuha!?” (what language is that?!)
you where sure that no one could understand you, so its not as if questions was effective, that is until tony looked down, seeming to be reading something.
“uhhh- Albanian.” Tony stated.
“Ndryshoje ate perseri!” (change it back!) he again looked down at the screen. scanned it and began typing.
“better?” he asked “god i hope so.” you responded. He handed you the device again, then began to walk out the door. only then did you notice to translate audio controls he was using.
“We’ll use you on our next mission, try to practice with it
from now until then.” He was followed by Steve, Natasha, Thor and Wanda.
You stood there, glancing towards Bucky then back down at
the screen in your hands.
That night you spent almost 4 hours picking out the right
outfit. You finally settled on professional looking white blouse and black
slacks. It was hard to except comfort in wearing a dress, especially for how
fragile your body used to be, instead you decided you’d slowly work up to that.
After doing your makeup and hair, you went down to the
common room and found Bucky waiting patiently on the couch, his body lined in
kaki pants, and a navy blue dress shirt. When his eyes locked on you, he stood.
“Y-you, I uh…” he stuttered, “You look amazing.” You blushed
as he then rubbed the back of his neck and quickly grabbed his gray blazer from
the back of the couch. “Are you ready?”
You nodded meekly.
It was a funny thing, being so nervous around him, you’d
kissed him before, talked to him plenty, and he took an unusually fast likening
to you. But still you felt butterflies in your tummy and simultaneously felt those butterflies flap their wings of
fire to cause it to churn.
Nervous, yes that’s what you still are. The whole way there,
clinging to Bucky’s arm, and the entire time you waited to be seated.
And then, you weren’t.
You were flying on cloud 9, staring into pools of ocean and
laughing with the sound of liquid gold that poured from his mouth.
“You really broke 6 bones while trying to play tennis?” he
“Yeah well I was an hyper child.” You replied, but then he
stopped for a moment, thinking.
“(y/n)?” he asked softly, peering over the candle light as
you pressed a glass of wine to your lips.
“What happened before Tony found you.”
You coughed; choking on your drink and feeling some pour
down your chin, but quickly wiped it before it could touch your blouse.
“Sorry, I’m just curious, you don’t have to-“
“No, no. it’s alright Bucky.” You cleared your throat. “Id start
at just before they took me in but it probably wouldn’t make any sense.”
“Start were ever you’d like”
“When I was little my dad was always a little… worried,
about me.” You gulped. “More so then most parents, but out of anything I think
in a way.. He was scared of me.”
“Scared of you?” Bucky questioned.
“My mom died, when I was born. But the doctors never knew
why. And I think in a way he blamed himself… but even more he blamed me.”
You took a deep breath and let it out through your mouth.
“As I grew up, he started to notice my frail state. I broke
bones so often a hospital room became like a second home, and as such my father
spiraled down into debt.”
“So he did the only think he could think of.” You looked up
at Bucky, his expression hard and concerned. “He put me up for adoption.”
“How… how old where you?”
“Ten.” You smiled. “Ten, and id already broken every bone in
my body at least once.”
“I was an active kid, I loved sports, I loved dares, but
when I was put into that home, I was on lock down. A couple times even in a
The waiter came to pick up menus, asking about choices and
smiling sweetly at you. But Bucky didn’t remove his eyes from your face, he was
“Did you ever….” He trailed,
“No. I never got adopted. I was there from 10 to 18 and not
once was I even allowed to be interviewed.”
You gave a humorless laugh.
“Defective, that’s what they’d call me. So I felt I needed
to prove to them, and my father I could live on my own.”
“So I left, an 18 year old with no money, family or friends,
and I got a job.”
This time you laughed, you laughed in good heart and watched
Bucky smile softly at the sound.
I always smelled like tuna and grease. But I found a little apartment, and I
lived, I lived and I didn’t break a single bone for 2 years.”
You shook your head.
“The third year wasn’t bad. Minor injuries., the 4th
and 5th was just bad relationships and insomnia but the 6th
… I was in car crash, broke so many bones I was in the hospital for months, and
when I got out… I was so far in debt, so lost in the pile of rent, that I
couldn’t get back up.”
The food finally arrived, but being so engaged in the conversation,
neither of you began to eat.
“The whole year before Tony found me was hell. I lost my
job, my home, everything. It was like a nightmare, because I finally saw my dad
in myself. Not even I could deal with
me. I was so much baggage; I couldn’t even live with myself.”
“And… the blast?” Bucky wondered. But he had the most heartbroken
look on his face. One that he got when he wanted to say something but couldn’t.
And you knew him well enough to know that it was probably something to contour
your inner turmoil.
“I broke my leg.” You wiped a hand down your face. “I broke
my leg, and I had no house, no job, and a mountain of debt, I couldn’t go to
the hospital, but I also couldn’t walk, which means I couldn’t find food. So I was
angry, I was livid. Why me. Why did I have to carry around this burden of glass
skin, and then… I just kind of lost it.”
You poked around your plate with your fork.
“I didn’t mean to do so much damage Bucky… I really didn’t.”
Maitai Milky Way. by Mikey Mack Via Flickr: I’ve been wanting to shoot from this spot since first visiting Nelson, this is the view from the Centre of New Zealand. Not bad eh?
The Maitai Valley heads East-ish just out of Nelson town centre which is right behind me. My hopes were for there to be a bit of low lying fog or smoke from peoples fires resting in the nooks, but this night was a bit warmer and windier than hoped.
The moon was at it’s First Quarter, or 59% illumination, hence this looks like day-time.
Over the mountains in the background, you can see a phenomenon called Catabatic Wind, which creates these static rolling clouds over the mountains. I will post a time-lapse of this later.
“You aren’t,” says Tony. He’s doing something on one of the holo-screens, Steve can’t really see what from where he’s laying, but if he had to guess, its probably cloaking their take-off. “No one knows where Captain America ran off to. He’s certainly wasn’t captured by ex-Hydra operatives, and I certainly didn’t just save him, because I wouldn’t just do that. The guy’s an asshole, and a fugitive and I’ve decided I don’t wanna get involved.”
Steve considers this, and then himself, or what parts he can make out–his vision keeps clouding with static, his head hurts, feels split open. He’s bleeding in too many places. He shouldn’t try sitting up. He considers it anyway, but he feels too heavy, he can’t get himself to move.
“He’s also not five foot three,” continues Tony, “so. You aren’t Captain America. Which means I think I can get away with hiding you for now. At least until we can get all this…fixed.” He’s looking at Steve now, seeing all the ways this is Wrong.
Steve doesn’t mean to close his eyes for more than a few seconds, but just like that, he’s slipped under. He sleeps.
Note: A couple things that aren’t addressed due to limited-perspective narration: Kenma does in fact help coach the team as a one-time thing, but tells Shouyou to tell Kuroo that he owes him big for it, which he then forgets to do. Shouyou was also already on his way to Tokyo to spend a few days with Kenma over break, but didn’t feel comfortable mentioning that.
* * *
Tetsurou Kuroo was all of eighteen years one month old, and in rut.
He was hot, and he was horny. He’d woken up feverish that morning, burning up, unable to make his eyes focus clearly on anything, and unable to make his brain coherent enough to grab his reading glasses. They’re right there! he thought to himself once he had spotted them, just take them!, yet was unable to make his hands work for even such a simple action. Grab them! grab them! grab them! the sliver of his brain that still functioned supplied uselessly and repeatedly, but he only laid under his covers, too hot to move or function.
When he wasn’t out of bed in time for practice his mother had come in to check on him, found him in a state of listless misery, and immediately wet a washcloth for his head, before going to phone the volleyball team that their captain wouldn’t be able to come in that day.
It was several hours later when the door cracked open again. In the intervening time the other effects of his rut had come; an insatiable lust washed over him, leading him to roll and grind his hips into the mattress for relief, but after spending himself the first time, the heat was back within minutes, with greater strength than before, and no amount of grinding would ease the frenzy of his instincts. He’d tried crumpling one of his blankets, in a moment of usable energy, into a wad to mount, but the act of plunging in had only riled him up further, and the inability to mount and claim real flesh exacerbated his nerves to such an extant that he was finally forced to give up, and snarled out a shout of frustration as he fell onto his bed with a bounce, and lay still, hair plastered to his forehead with sweat, the lack of alleviation his only relief. His mother had checked on him periodically, as the morning crept along in agonizing slowness, administering to him as best she could, and when the knocking had come an unknown amount of time later, Tetsurou didn’t stir an inch. The door opened on its own after a moment.
“Um, Kuroo-san?” an unfamiliar voice stammered out. In sheer curiosity Tetsurou opened his eyes, and turned his head toward the door. There, slightly indistinct in the bright light that filtered into his own room’s darkness, like some sort of short, ginger-headed apparition, was Karasuno’s number Ten. Tetsurou began the long effort of forming the words to ask how the hell he’d come to be in his house, when the other supplied the answer. “U-um, Kenma called, and a-asked me to—” Hinata stopped, took a deep breath to steel himself, and tried again. “Kenma said you were sick, and asked me to check on you, since he was too busy helping coach the team to go himself.” He began fiddling with his shirt hem, and stammered out that he was on winter vacation now, so he said he would. He also managed to get out that his mother asked him to ask him if he wanted any water? The convalescent’s brain took a humiliatingly long time to process everything the boy had said, and then Tetsurou managed, somehow, to nod his head in assent.
Hinata took a step inside the doorway, and coughed heavily. The part of Tetsurou’s brain that was still working realized the room must reek of his hormones, and died a bit in agony. Hinata came into the room, carrying a tray with a glass and pitcher of water and a plate of toast, and choking a little on the thick musk that hung in the air. The smaller boy looked around for a place to set the tray, and Tetsurou mumbled out “floor”. Hinata looked at him, then set the tray down on the carpet uncertainly. He filled the cup with the pitcher, held it in front of Tetsurou’s face, and brought it to his lips. A sweet smell came over him, and Tetsurou gulped the glass down hungrily and finished it; then he could only flap his lips like a fish out of water to ask for another. Hinata poured out another glass, and Tetsurou sat up and downed it. “Thanks, short stuff,” he rasped out as he settled back into his pillows.
The shorter boy bristled at the nickname, and gave a squawk in indignation, and Tetsurou’s lips managed to curl into a smirk despite his general inertia; habit makes ease. After a moment he let it fall, and asked for another glass. Hinata leaned over as he fed Kuroo his third cup, and the sweet smell grew stronger. Was the water flavored? He didn’t think so, but then, he couldn’t tell through the clouds and static in his mind.
“Do you want any toast?” Hinata asked. Tetsurou shook his head, changed his mind, and nodded. The boy, still miffed judging from his body language, nonetheless brought a slice to Tetsurou’s lips, fed it in, and told him to chew. After he had finished with it, the boy pushed a few strands of the other’s bangs, limp with sweat, out of his face, and gave him a fourth glass without being asked, and Tetsurou, unable to find his words, hoped his eyes alone, watering as they were with emotion, could convey his gratitude for his savior.
The convalescent must have looked as pathetically miserable as he felt, because Hinata looked at him, and then began laughing softly. Kuroo was about to growl out a retort, when the sweet smell he’d noticed became stronger, and without thinking he began sniffing at it instead. He didn’t know what it was, but it was nice, no, more than nice, and he wanted to find out. He sat up in bed, and Hinata startled and leaned back, but Kuroo had found the source of the smell, and he leaned in, breathing in the scent the boy was giving off.
“What are you doing?!” Hinata squeaked out, red tinging his cheeks in shock.
“You smell good,” Tetsurou replied, gruffly, as his hands found the other’s on their own, and wrapped around them. He pushed his nose into the crook of Hinata’s neck, his eyes closed.
“H-hey, let me go,” Hinata tried to say, sputtering in his confusion at the situation. He tried to pull away, but Kuroo held tight to his hands, and crooned softly. He nuzzled deeper into Hinata’s neck, inhaling the sweet scent rolling off the boy in his emotion, and then, his mind in a haze, opened his mouth widely, bared his fangs, and began lapping at the scent glands under the skin.
The other boy flushed in the face, but allowed the larger male into his space, slowly closing his eyes as hair and features filled the gap between his shoulder and ear. His lips parted on their own as he tilted his head without thinking, and arched his back, and in the middle of confusion, fear and emerging desires, he began to gasp and softly moan.
Tetsurou came to his senses as he began to roll the two of them over on the bed. Breathing hard, he looked down, and found below him Hinata, splayed out, shirt half-ridden up his chest, his face flushed crimson with a roil of emotions. Even as the full realization of what he’d been about to do washed over him, his instincts were still yelling at him to claim the boy, to hold him tight and scent him, scent him, do it now! It took most of his willpower just to resist, and into the bubbling cauldron already poured the voice of maturer instincts, those to dominate, to claim in a different way entirely.
Tetsurou was someone who believed in self-control, and the ability of willpower to accomplish almost anything. Ashamed, he took a few deep breaths, mastered himself, and croaked out “I’m sorry.” He began to climb off the boy, when the other stopped him. “You can smell m-me, if y-you want,” Hinata told him. Tetsurou stopped dead.
Below him, Hinata’s eyes were wide, the pupils dilated perhaps as much as his own must have been, and had a glazed look to them. Tetsurou looked down at his arms, corded with lithe muscle. He was no giant—wasn’t even Bokuto— but he was large, and he knew he was strong. The boy in his grasp wouldn’t be able to fight back if anything went somewhere he didn’t like. He had to stop this, stop himself, before he went over the edge. Tetsurou swallowed hard. His mouth was try, his tongue was clumsy, and it took him several tries just to get out the words “You sure?”
Hinata looked at him with large eyes, and stared for several moments before nodding. His mouth moved silently a few times before speaking “I trust you,” then added “Not to do anything bad.” His voice warbled between a whisper and over his breath.
Tetsurou felt his breathing quicken and his fingers tighten their grasp around the arms of the boy beneath him, but all he could process was how this boy had more faith in him than he did. He was either very brave, or very stupid. Possibly both. He continued to stare up at him. “S-smell me, please,” Hinata stammered.
It only took one moment for the last of Tetsurou’s resolve to snap, and then he was on the boy in a flash, scooping him up in a vice grip and digging his nose into the other’s neck with a fury.
The curtains fluttered as the early autumn breeze blew from
the cracked window. A beam of sunlight danced on her hard wood floor. Y/N could
hear children laughing and playing from the street below. The muted tinkling of
her leaf embossed wind chime floated through her balcony doors. She sighed
deeply, burying her face into her down-filled pillow.
The day was too beautiful to be feeling the way she was
It seemed like an astronomical weight was pulling her heart
right into her stomach. Her brain was dashing a hundred miles a second. She had
tried all the grounding techniques she knew. She’d been counting to 10
continuously for the past 5 minutes. It wasn’t helping.
She knew it would pass. It always did. But, in this moment,
she felt so bone crushingly alone.
Ever since she was younger, she always felt as though she
didn’t fit. No matter where she was, it didn’t feel like home. Whether it was
with family, friends or past relationships, she knew in her gut that something
was missing. She had always felt like a burden, or that she wasn’t really
wanted. Her last relationship made good work of etching that self-doubt into
her brain and solidifying that she didn’t belong anywhere.
Y/N had recently moved to London, no more than 3 months ago.
The transition had been surprisingly smooth. When she visited in the past, she
fell in love with the city and the people in it. Her journey to the U.K. had
obvious career benefits on top of satisfying her need to return. She had made
several friends and grew closer to them day after day. But, the main reason she
relocated was for him.
It was odd to think that a little more than a year ago she
was drudging through the darkest time of her life. Joe had been her light,
guiding her through the deep. When she was at her lowest, he was there to drag
her to her feet. No questions asked. To this day, he still was. With Joe, she
felt heard. She felt appreciated. She felt wanted. Needed, even.
But, her battered heart always caused her to doubt. What if
she was playing herself? What if she was just wishing these things into being?
What if it wasn’t true?
This train of thought would cause her to analyze and
catastrophize and spiral and next thing she knew she’d be paralyzed by it.
And that’s where Y/N was now. On the cold, wood floor,
clinging to her pillow, her knuckles white from the strain. Her therapist told
her to use her grounding techniques. Well, she was on the ground. Did that
Her phone began to buzz against the kitchen counter.
Buzz. Please, just be
a text. Buzz. Group chat? Buzz. Phone call. Shit.
For half a second she considered just ignoring it, but her
anxiety forced her to get up and slump over to her phone.
Joe’s goofy face displayed on the caller I.D. She answered.
“Hello?” Y/N stretched her stiff back, grunting when it
“Yeah, never better,” she droned, glaring at the discarded
pillow on the floor. “How are you?”
He chuckled. Her chest immediately felt a fraction lighter
at the sound.
“One of those days, huh?” he drawled good-naturedly.
She ran her palm down her face, “Yeah, one of those days.”
“Well, love. I might just have the cure for that.”
Her lips tugged slightly at the corners, “Oh, is that so?”
“Mhmm. I stopped by the shops after I left the office, and
you know what I found?”
She leaned against the counter, “Not a clue, but I have a
feeling you’re about to tell me.”
She couldn’t help but smile at the brightness in his voice. “That
was one of my favorites when I was a kid.”
“I know. You told me,” he said matter-of-factly, obviously
proud of himself. “Not to worry, Y/N. You’ll be reunited with your goblin king
She let out a small giggle and felt her heart warm at his
Y/N had told him forever ago, after a couple of beers, that
when she was younger she used to call to the goblin king at night, asking him
to take her away.
Of course he’d
“So, how about it? I bring Labyrinth, you order pizza?”
She finally showered and changed into some clean,
comfortable clothes while she waited. The pizza arrived a little after Joe
finally made it to her flat.
Giddy with excitement, Joe wolfed down a slice of pizza, put
the disc in, and tucked himself under one of Y/N’s faux fur blankets in record
time. When the menu music started to play, he looked over with a boyish smile,
lifting up some of the cover for her. “Come on then.” He patted the spot beside
As soon as she curled up to him, he pressed play.
She was nestled in tight against Joe’s side, under a mess of
fuzzy blankets. The warmth and comfort of their position begged her eyes to
close but she couldn’t. Not only because she was trying so hard to concentrate
on the film, but the weight on her heart from earlier was still annoyingly
present. Only now, it felt as though it had morphed into less of a mass, and
more of a static cloud. She found herself constantly having to tap her fingers
together or shake her leg.
It was horridly distracting and she wished her body would
just cut it out. Not only was it irritating for her, she could imagine it was
annoying for Joe as well. But, he never said a word, just kept his arm tucked
around her shoulders, tracing lazy circles with his fingers on her hip. Whenever
her twitching became a bit more erratic, he’d put more pressure on his strokes,
consequently causing her movements to slow.
It wasn’t until more than half-way through the movie that she
realized he had been grounding her. Whether intentionally or not, she didn’t
know. She couldn’t help but to be slightly stunned. But the more she thought about
it, the more it made sense. Every time she had moments of anxiety and stress,
whether triggered or not, he automatically made sure he was touching her anyway
possible. A hand to the small of her back, his chin on her head, his thigh to
her thigh. Without fail, it always calmed her down.
She was surged with an overwhelming feeling of gratitude.
What did she do to deserve this human? It’s one thing to find someone who will
understand you and put up with your quirks, but another thing entirely to find
someone who knew you so deeply, they reacted to the changes in your emotions as
if it were second nature to them. To be centered by that someone’s touch alone,
it was unbelievable to her.
Maybe, for once in her life, she was where she was supposed
She flinched as a drop of wet slapped against her hand. Y/N
hadn’t noticed that she had begun to cry. She looked up to see that the credits
were rolling. She hadn’t even been paying attention to the last 20 minutes of
Joe’s thumb swiped across her cheek, drying stray tears. His
ocean blue eyes stared into hers for a moment before laying a delicate kiss on
Instinctively, she leaned into him, wrapping her arms around
his middle and burying her face into his chest.
He shifted so he could easily pull her into his lap, snaking
his arms around her waist, his hands splayed on her back.
Y/N timed her breaths to the rise and fall of Joe’s chest,
counting his heartbeats.
She slowly looked up at the sound of his voice.
“What’s on your mind, love?” His eyes shone with concern.
Y/N just looked at him, slowly studying him. His so blue
eyes with silver starbursts around the pupils. The curve of his mouth from his frown.
The furrow bunched between his brows from worry. The sharp edges of his jaw.
The soft shadows cast from his high, prominent cheekbones.
She pulled her gaze back to his eyes, the lines around them
softer as he observed her back.
Y/N opened her mouth to speak, but nothing came out. She wet
her lips and swallowed. Joe waited patiently. She tried again.
“I want to…,” she breathed in deeply and exhaled slowly,
willing the tremors in her voice to go away. “I just want to belong.”
The tension between Joe’s brows visibly relaxed as he looked
at her with mild surprise. His grip on her tightened a bit.
“I’ve never felt as though I did, no matter where I was. But
then,” she brushed her thumb along his bottom lip, her eyes following the
movement. “You came along.”
He took her curled hand into his own, kissing the back of
her thumb. His own began to stroke her palm slowly. His gaze met hers, silently
encouraging her to continue.
“You’ve helped me be the happiest I’ve ever been. When I’m
with you, I feel safe,” she gave him a small teary-eyed smile. “When I’m with
you, I feel like I’m finally home.”
He smiled back, the corners of his eyes crinkling. Joe’s
other hand wiping away new tears from her face. “Then, why the tears? What’s
been bothering you?”
Her face fell slightly, her eyes downcast, “Even though I
feel this way, I always doubt that it’s real or mutual.” She took in a shaky
breath, “Maybe I’m just imagining it. Maybe I’m just overthinkin-“
Joe’s fingers under her chin, gently pulling her face up to
look at him stopped her in her tracks.
“You’re not, Y/N,” he breathed. “You’re not overanalyzing.
You’re not seeing more than what’s there. You’re not alone in this.”
For a moment, they did nothing but stare at each other, their
bodies still entwined.
“It didn’t take me long to know that I’ve been waiting for
you my whole life,” he smiled as he brushed a strand of hair behind Y/N’s ear. “I
was lost before I met you. My only purpose was in my career and even that was
rocky sometimes. But once you walked into my life, I knew where my place was.”
The tears flowed freely down Y/N’s cheeks now, her hand
“You are my home, Y/N,” he hushed, his face inching closer
to hers. “You always have been.”
She grasped the front of his shirt, pulling him in and
closing the gap between their lips. Her eyes sliding shut, Y/N let out a soft sigh
as Joe buried his fingers in her hair, deepening the kiss. His breath hitched when
she responded in kind. The dampness from Y/N’s cheeks transferred to Joe’s, their
noses bumping occasionally, but they didn’t care. All that mattered in that
moment was pouring all sentiment and emotion into each other, willing the other
to know the depth of the impact they had made.
The kiss began to slow, their heartrates steadying. After a
few lazy pecks, her eyes fluttered open, and stared into Joe’s, now dilated,
ones. He pulled her into him, holding on tight. Her face nestled into the crook
of his neck, breathing in the vanilla musk of his cologne mixed with his
“You belong, Y/N,” he whispered to her. “You belong right
here with me.”
Cassandra can feel it, simmering under his skin. She does not know if he is aware, but there is a faint glow to his eyes in the dark, and make the hair on the back of her neck prickle just by standing close, the static almost a second cloak to his form.
She imagines this is why people find the Hero of Ferelden unpleasant to speak with, likableness of an agitated porcupine aside. She would understand that. But this – the permanent sensation of honed mana, molded into the promise of a spell but never released, perched precariously on the edge that is his own body…he makes you restless.
But he is careful. He is careful and it shows. The cloud of static dims considerably after only a second or two of his standing close without any comment from Cassandra herself or anyone who is bothered. The Warden hauls children over his head and spins them around until they laugh and set them down without any so much as flinching. Even in battle he is the same; a shift in his mana, concentrated to his spear, his sword, rarely more than that. Rarely spells with the same bombast as other mages, and always precisely struck. Always ready to pull people back on their feet with healing ones that are increasingly difficult to time right in this new world where the Veil is too thin and the Fade presses too close.
Once, there must have been someone he accidentally hurts, Cassandra thinks but does not ask. Once, a very long time ago, a deeply-entrenched impression that leaves Warden Surana not reluctant to be reckless with his magic but refusing to be reckless with it.
Harm done by him is never accidental, not in a fight. Harm done by him is hard to recover from; purposefully so, almost every hit aiming for a kill. You can see it in his eyes. You can see it in his face, the wicked toothy curve of an elf that really, truly, gets drunk on the roar of combat.
But he never turns it on Cassandra. Never on Solas, on Varric, the Inquisitor. He took up the sword to spare us from collateral damage, Leliana tells Cassandra once. Leliana’s deceit clings to her like expensive perfume on a noblewoman, but Cassandra believes that without question.
Thinks, what a damning thing it must be, when that violence is finally turned on you. Because then there is the hint that you have done wrong to deserve it.
“You say my life’s a mess but I’m still looking pretty in this dress”
“Can you walk a little faster?” Min Yoongi had hissed to you as he stopped just under the unlit neon sign that hung above the black out windows that acted as a door. There was no doorman and you assumed this was because it was three in the afternoon, and Yoongi ushered you inside quickly.
The building itself was new, though whoever had built it had gone to lengths to make the outside look like a central European house from the nineteenth century and it was painted in a pristine white and there were, because you counted, no windows to be seen anywhere in the building. Or where you assumed they were, was hidden behind the five long thin billboards that were printed with silhouettes and purple and pink flowers that hung from the roof and descended down the four story building to the floor.
Tucked into the middle of Gangnam, it looked like your average nightclub from the outside, a high end nightclub where you’d pay more than needed for a glass of whiskey and go there to rub shoulders with the rich while sipping the sweet alcohol to burn your throat and worries.
The walls were padded, that was what your eyes were drawn to first as Min Yoongi had descended the stairs with you close behind and through two double doors, disregarding the other ones that lead to the higher levels of the building.
It was in pristine condition, even for an entrance way and as you looked back the way you came, the side of each step had a white light embedded into it, running from left to right near the top of each step, not quite at the bend yet, like a stairway to heaven, except heaven to you was anywhere else
It was December first and it had snowed for the first time in what felt like forever and as you exited your morning class, the only one of the day, he’d called you, just like he’d said he would three days previous.
He hadn’t bothered with a hello.
“Tuesday afternoon you have no classes, I’ve given you enough time to recover”
He hadn’t bothered to to check any of this with you either and it bugged you with how much he knew and how little he’d needed to consult with you to get it.
“Time to go to work kid”
You were rigid and stiff as your mother softly touched your arm the morning she’d left. Someone you had known all your life, whom you saw everyday for eighteen years and a good few of the other ones. It felt wrong. But either way you’d felt a distinct repulsion against it. Like when your father had hugged you a week earlier, returning home so he could go back to work. And your mother, tears in her eyes asked for the fifth time that morning if you were sure.
It had almost been a month. And though you weren’t nearly as healed as you liked, you were sure.
Your parents protests wouldn’t hinder your own judgement as Jung Hoseok became more and more friendly with you and that even was a stretch. More so than the piles of emails of course work from your teachers you hadn’t bothered opening yet. More so than the time you thought you saw Min Yoongi’s head duck into a black car as you exited your apartment.
It was a headache and the more you put it off, the worse and more prominent it became.
Your coat was a deep charcoal and his hair was back to the exact same colour and he’d held the door for you as you entered the room of spinning lights and purple glow. For the first time ever Min Yoongi was impatient.
Everything else was like a blur of dark purple and neon lighting and silver and light reflecting from everything. Tiny silver circular bulbs hung from the high ceiling, mismatched but purposefully so, some longer than others, some closer to the floor than the rest, like worms of shiny metal stretching to reach something. The island bar was a black marble and had tiny strips of off white running through it.
The balcony that stretched all along the back of the room was covered in tiny shards of reflective silver ovals and diamonds, tinged purple, you guessed it was because of the colour scheme of every chair and booth, along with the giant neon sign that hung right above every liquor or wine imaginable.
The whole room stretched back a good couple metres and doors were everywhere with equally bright or dull signs above the them leading to different rooms and areas and gentlemen’s quarters and you’d suppressed a scoff at the sophisticated name.
Drowned in a sea of glass and purple blue light, it smelled like white wine and lavender and gave off the highest vibe of intimidation you’d ever gotten from an empty room.
“You want your usual boss?” he was tall and smiled and had dimples that were brighter than the glass he was polishing. He spoke to the other man in a familiar tone, like he’d asked it hundred times and would be doing so for another hundred.
“Save it Namjoon, I’m here on business” he voice was the same when he spoke to you in the car, though he’d calmly gotten out three blocks away from the building in the middle of traffic, expecting you to follow him accordingly.
He spoke to everyone the same way. Bordering a disinterest, it never got there and he always stayed at passive, never a reaction other than maybe a chaste scoff you took for his way of showing amusement or a quick narrowed eyed blink that was his way of telling you to stop, whatever it was you were doing.
Other than his natural bored, expressionless face, that was all the reaction you’d gotten out of Yoongi. You didn’t think you’d get much else.
“Ah” the man had placed the spotless glass down on the counter, the clink strange in the empty room, though a thousand more would be heard that night and it would be drowned in an ocean of multiplications of itself “Business”
You liked the way Kim Namjoon had first looked at you, like he knew something you didn’t, but not smugly, more casually than most would, he just knew and he looked at you like he knew you and that was okay.
That was very much okay with you at that moment because you didn’t know anything.
“Angel in?” was Yoongi’s enquiry with the bartender. Namjoon had glanced at you before answering the shorter man.
“You know it” he’d grinned
“Of course, when is she not?” was a one breath sigh of a reply. You weren’t sure who he was speaking to.
He’d placed one hand on the bar counter, silver rings, one on his thumb, another on his middle finger now tinged a light lilac as he splayed his thin fingers across a beer mat, hovering the palm just above the cold counter.
You had not removed yourself from your position two feet behind Min Yoongi at all times.
“She in the back?” he’d questioned.
“Where she always is” was Namjoon’s casual answer.
Kim Namjoon had ashy hair, cut short at the sides and left long at the top. It was half wet, almost frizzy and he ran his hand through it painfully slow and you didn’t want to look at the way his shirt clung to him but you did.
A nod to Namjoon and Yoongi had tuned to you, crushing all hope of staying in that part of the bar any longer. He’d beckoned you with his hand and walked past the bar with his back to you and Namjoon had winked and you’d let your eyes bore into the back of the shorter man’s skull.
He was in jeans that day and his coat was long and thick and made of a deep black that matched the imprints of lips along the corridor as you left the main part of the bar and passed locked doors with beautiful calligraphy painted on the white wood and dim lights that barely let you see where you were going.
Again, there was no windows because you had counted.
“Take off your coat”
Yoongi had spoken quite suddenly and it startled you more than slightly as he stopped just before a black metal spiral staircase.
“You’ll be here for a while and if you manage to slip past someone you’ll freeze to death outside.”
You wanted him to be joking.
You’d taken off the heavy garment and handed it over to him in a slow movement, not looking him directly in the eye.
You had never seen Yoongi make a joke before and you’d have liked to think he was incapable of such a feet.
Three sets of eyes had stared at the two of you and you’d pulled your sleeves low over your wrists, the three men smoking down the hall slightly out of your line of view but prominently in the back of your mind.
His dress shoes had made little noise on the ascent up the thin steps and your own shoes had caused a jingle to emit from the metal of the stairs and each time it was heard, you could see Yoongi’s shoulder tense and you’d tiptoed up the rest before he’d leaned against the banister at the top and gave a long sigh.
Min Yoongi did not want to be there and you knew it. It would be obvious by how many times he’d check his watch in the hour to com.
He hadn’t bothered knocking as he pushed open two white Venetian doors that flicked back like ones you’d find at a restaurant used for entrances and exits to a busy kitchen. You’d followed quickly.
It was the only window you’d ever see in the whole building, though you were never allowed to go far, but it was bright and mid afternoon static, cloud filled sun had seeped through, slightly dull and in need of the lighting which was on above it, the winter air bit into you like ice would.
The polar opposite of every other part of the bar you’d seen, it was all pink. A dressing room of sorts, the walls were barely visible as racks upon racks of pastel pinks and baby blues and cool jet blacks had taken up the innocent colour scheme. Trimmed white and painted pink, everything gave off the innocent child like wonder a six year old’s bedroom would.
If that bedroom had been a lingerie shop.
There was one white vanity table and she’d sat with her back facing you both applying lipstick. It had dainty flowers and leaves carved into the varnished wood and took up a third of the farthest wall and she’d paid no heed to you as you watched her.
Her voice was honey and years of cigarettes combined and you were shocked it emitted from her small blood red lips, it was the only part of her face you could see, past her slim shoulders and bobbed black hair.
“You ever heard of knocking baby?”
Yoongi had approached her, your coat around his arm as he placed it down on a white leather chair near the window and spoke to the woman in a sarcastic tone of voice.
“You’re the picture of lovleyness like always”
“But how bout you stop painting your wrinkled lips and do your job?”
She’d finally turned around then, black heels coming into view, tight black pencil skirt the same colour as her fluffy jumper, fur you’d assumed. She wore gold jewellery, not a silver chain in sight and her earrings were bigger than your eyes as you watched her turn around on the small padded white chair. Elegant long legs were crossed over one another and sheer stockings brought your eyes to her knee length attire and god, she was the best looking fifty something pimp you’d ever seen.
“You got an appointment baby?” frown lines were carved deep into her face as she smirked.
She’d flicked her eyes up to Yoongi for this sarcastic question.
“Do I really need one Angel?” he was smug but she didn’t let him remain that way
“Yes peach you do. I’m a very busy woman you know?” she’d glanced towards you and brown eyes warmer than freshly brewed coffee and sharper than the man’s next to her were a shock.
“And I’m a very busy man. Can we move this along?” was her impatient reply.
Her laugh was like having a song to play on repeat until you’d gotten sick of it and even though you doubted this would happen, it was strange but enticing, she gave off the most sophistication you’d seen a woman her age pull off.
And god, did she pull it off well.
“Aw, poor boss’s gotta a busy schedule. Come back to me when you have to take it in the ass five times a night.”
She’d stood up and you’d stiffened at her path towards you.
“Please Angel, you haven’t had a client in ten years” was Min Yoongi’s scoff across the room.
“And you haven’t had a client ever. I guess that’s lucky for us isn’t it sweetie?”
She’d ignored her superior and looked at you with a motherly affection you weren’t sure was fake or just natural instinct but either way she’d blocked your view of the man leaning against the vanity table.
“Name’s Angel, peach. What’s yours?”
You weren’t a client, but she spoke to you like one and it made your blood turn to electricity and your veins pump static.
Past perfectly drawn red lips, a Cheshire grin had licked itself across her mouth and her teeth were as white as the painted nails she’d taken both your hands in. She was golden brown, and it made her bright nails stand out against her skin more and the gold matched her so nicely it was sinful.
“Well, it’s very nice to meet you (Y/N)” sultry eyes made you fidget and stiffen against her loose hold on your hands.
“Don’t take it personal, but I just call everyone something other than what they tell me” she’d winked, and it made you wonder how she was able to ignore Yoongi’s impatient stare.
“What are you gonna call me?” you’d asked.
She’d paused looking you over, up and down, and repeated it until you were more than uncomfortable.
“Pretty. But I think I’ll settle for doll”
“Are you done introducing yourselves yet or will I leave so you can pay Angel for her services?”
She’d whipped around, though much shorter than him, though still in heels, he hadn’t batted an eye as she approached him. She’d bypassed his figure at the last minute, choosing to skim through the many fur coats next to the vanity table. A pastel rainbow of faux fur, her eyes caught yours from behind it.
“You always knew how to ruin something. Even as a kid” she’d spoken as she went back to gazing through the clothes she’d seen a billion times.
“It’s one of my many talents” was Yoongi’s shrug.
“Many? Oh well someones being generous” she’d bitten back playfully.
You’d never seen someone interact with him in such a way and it baffled you, no matter the twenty year age gap on her part, how he had not pulled out a gun and told her to stop speaking ill of him. He’d let his ego take a blow, but only by someone he liked.
“Speaking of generous, keep her modest will you. I’d rather not deal with anymore incidents like last Friday”
You didn’t need to ask and you didn’t want to know so you instead twiddled your fingers and wrapped them around each other and unwrapped them and by the time you’d looked up, Min Yoongi was passing you.
He hadn’t bothered with a goodbye and you stopped him without needing to speak his name
“Wait, you’re leaving?”
He’d gotten halfway down the stairs before turning back, your coat in his hand, obviously keeping it from you, keeping to his word as well and sent you a confused look. Head lolled back slightly, he’d gazed up with hooded eyes, tired eyes, there was no pity in yours.
“Yes. I’ll be downstairs”
You’d paused, knowing he was impatient, knowing his mind was half his gold Rolex watch and knowing he would probably walk back down the few steps remaining once you’d uttered you’re embarrassing words. You’d spoken in a whisper, not wanting to look at his expression before he stomped off to the bar with a scoff.
You’d tried to form words but your eyes were half closed already and your ribcage locked as you tried to breath in and focus on the cold steel rather than the cackling coming a few feet away, thick and rigid, a smoker’s laugh. A man’s laugh. The three from before probably.
His presence may have been daunting, but it was familiar and it was as much as a safety as scissors were a bunch of flowers, deceivingly connected in some way, they weren’t what you were looking for but you were alright with settling . You’d take his calculating eyes over uncharted territories.
“What kid?” he’d stared up at you in a condescending nature and he’d leaned against the metal railing.
You hadn’t answered.
“You want me to stay?” he’d scoffed.
You’d heard the soft footsteps on the steps and his looming presence had stopped in front of the doorway you were blocking and you could sense he was looking at you. You’d stepped aside so he could brush past you.
“Christ you’re demanding aren’t you?” his coat swung against your legs as he re-entered the room.
Min Yoongi was ironic, or hypocritical, as he’d sat with his black turtleneck jumper and and rimmed glasses and explained in a snappy quick series of sentences that you were now very much obliged, or rather more seriously so, expected to give up every Friday and Saturday night of the next, he’d looked down at nothing as if reading from a paper that wasn’t there, however many weeks it would take, all Min Yoongi knew was that you’d be there well past Christmas.
Jeon Jungkook doesn’t exactly have a timetable, he’d mentioned when you’d asked about when exactly you’d be expected to show up. You’d been laying low for over a month and he’d probably caught wind of you by now.
It was like putting a bulls-eye on your forehead and wrapping you in a pretty red bow so you wouldn’t stain when he came to off you.
At least when he found you, and Yoongi was blunt about this, if he managed to somehow, there was no somehow in his original statement but you added one for your own piece of mind, they’d be dealing with it in their territory.
Meaning if you got your brains blown out, the cleaner wouldn’t mind all that much.
“Arms out, doll” she’d stood with the measuring tape wrapped around her hand and the pieces she’d chosen she’d placed in between her teeth. You’d obliged, choosing to face away from Min Yoongi so you couldn’t read his expression.
“So it’s tomorrow night?” Angel had caught your arm in a viper’s grip as she leaned down to your waist line from your shoulder. You’d asked hesitantly, going over the conversation he’d had in the car previously with you.
“Like I said in the car, tomorrow is just a test run” he sounded bored
“Test run how? Can I really fail at this?” you’d turned around as Angel instructed.
“Yes, you really can and I wouldn’t put it past you to be honest” he looked bored too.
You’d decided to ignore that moved onto questioning him once again.
“And I just sit at the bar?” you’d breathed out a sigh of relief as Angel finished measuring your legs.
“That’s the plan”
“And that’s all I do?” it seemed strange to you, the little yet detailed instructions varied. You were over loaded with things you didn’t want to know, or told little to nothing about the most vital parts of your job.
“Yes that and for all I care, you can come back from the brink of alcohol poisoning every night as long as you’re in here when I say”
“What, he bribing you with free drinks?” Angel had scoffed, seemingly done with your measurements now and was instead walking around the small isle of clothes.
“Yeah, and a little extra on the side” he’d glanced away from Angel for a moment to stare at you and you had stood in your socks watching him right back. Your pushed your jumper sleeves over the tips of your fingers and furrowed your eyebrows.
He’d said anything you wanted.
And you intended to hold him to that offer, so long as you held up yours.
“Hoseok said you went by Seungkan’s yesterday”
It wasn’t any sort of question, but just a bland statement he seemed all too cool about. His tone of voice didn’t expect an answer and you wondered if he’d just said it to stir some sort of rise in you but you’d simply taken the clothes Angel gave you and decided that Min Yoongi wasn’t getting an answer anyway.
Because you didn’t have one.
You’d exited your final class and your feet had slowly edged you towards the east side of the district and before you knew it you’d walked by his building and your feet were sore from the doubled path back home. It was mindless walking, as if the action would take you away from all of this, though you knew it was just your vacant limbs taking care of themselves while your mind buzzed with a million and one different thoughts. That was a thing that could get you killed and you’d exited the dressing room in the same mindless manner.
Angel had let her smile overtake her small face as you pushed back the velvet curtains and stepped out in the pristine white two piece and you turned to the mirror with anticipation. The high waisted skirt clung to your hips and stopped mid thigh to show off more of your leg than you wanted, you were grateful for the high necked top in that moment. The shoes were uncomfortable, high heels and complete with fur on the toe strap, it was awkward walking in the sheer tights she’d given you, tiny white dots dabbed along the material like shapeless snowflakes.
You hadn’t asked for an opinion, it was a high end club and you had to wear high end clothes so you did not arrive expecting to argue with Min Yoongi or anyone for that matter. You’d simply frowned, unimpressed by the soft fabric or the pretty detailing, you were playing dress up, you were, in retrospect, a doll.
He’d eventually gotten up, the silent room an easy way of making his presence know as he shuffled over to Angel and bypassed her for the rack of coats beside her. Slender fingers had trailed their way through the tops of hangers as he pushed a couple aside and gazed at more, his face hiding all sort of deliberation, like he was choosing ice cream toppings, he didn’t really care, he’d take what he got.
Min Yoongi had approached you then, dropping the pastel pink faux fur on one shoulder and looking at you in the mirror in a sort of condescending way, head tilted upward, eyes hooded and the same old brown you found too icy at most times just like his expressions. He was careful but careless and it made no sense.
“Well you’re no pretty woman but you’ll do” he’d nodded.
“Pretty Woman is about a prostitute” you’d countered.
“And what do you think you look like right now?” he’d slowly sauntered back to his place on the chair.
You’d tugged the coat tighter around your
“I don’t know” you mumbled, half a whisper and more than half bitterly, you frown remained.
You knew what you looked like.
“Remember, this is all just for show” He was right.
You weren’t just dressed like some expensive hooker.
“It’s all just a game” He was right.
You weren’t sure how you felt wearing the branded clothing, it was an unsettling feeling.
“You just sit there and blend in” He’d already told you this.
You’d shifted as goosebumps ran up your legs.
“That’ll be enough for Jungkook” He’d already told you this.
You’d stared at your feet to avoid looking at yourself, who were you fooling?
“And once he gets word of your whereabouts”
You knew what you were dressed as.
He’d spoken for you long and enough and you doubted he’d ever actually stop.
**This chapter is dedicated to @optimisticwithcoffee who turned the unspeakable age of seventeen today, so godamn old now. Hope you had the best day ever, you really do deserve it. Thank you for always supporting my stories and being a lovely friend. This one’s for you kid!
Just had the BEST conversation with @rollerskatinglizard discussing the concept that troll hair floofs up like a cat’s when they’re excited/agitated/angry. Which is even more fun if you imagine it as a latent psionics effect like they just accumulate a lot of electrical psychic energy around them when they’re emotional and it statics into their hair. Plus this means it works with all hair lengths and can manifest in fun and varied ways for diff characters. Anyway, I promised I’d write up some of the headcanons we brainstormed b/c I am seriously invested in this xenoanatomy concept now and I need this on my blog.
Feferi: All of her hair floating up and whipping around her in unseen winds like some kind of eldritch horrorterror. The Condesce’s hair could probably actually eat you. And a low key floaty mermaid effect for Fef when she’s EXCIT—–ED.
Gamzee: Poofs up suddenly and dramatically when he’s startled, surprise hair explosion. Also picture him when he’s agitated with his voice starting to rise and fall and his tendrils of hair are starting to get more disheveled and poof out around him and it is very clear how close to the edge he is and eeeeek alarm bells.
Karkat: Permanent angry floofball. Small angry cloud. Bristly hedgehog.
Nepeta: Bristles like a cat/wolf, with the hair going up in a ridge like it would along the spine of an angry, dangerous animal. Silent threat. Very effective communication. People pay attention.
Kanaya: Studio Ghibli effect, her hair lifts up around the sides of her face when she’s angry. She’s so even temepered this happens very seldom. Kind of understated. Her face is very calm. And when it happens everybody in the room is like HOLY SHIT, run. Also she ruffles like a parakeet when she’s flustered by Rose. :33
Sollux: Keeps his hair short specifically so he doesn’t have to hassle with it and all his psiionics all the time. It would get in his electronics while he’s working. Does get bristly when annoyed.
Aradia: Also does the eldritch-being floating cloud of hair. You do not want to see her coming at you with her psioniics all around and death in her eyes. Also just general springiness and poof when she’s excited, which is most of the time. Like a bouncy sheep.
Equius: He’s got that long, smooth hair and its an outward statement of how strong his bond is with his moirail because he stays so calm and in control and his hair is always so settled. And he does try so hard to manage his emotions all the time and be in control and not hurt people/break things. And honestly, it’s still kind of hella intimidating because he just KNOCKED DOWN A WALL and he DOESN’T EVEN LOOK MAD.
Terezi: Spiky bristles everywhere muahahaha. She knows exactly how to do it for maximum intimidation and dramatic courtroom effect.
Tavros: Hahaha his mohawk stands on end when he’s angry/alarmed and then poofs out everywhere when he’s really freaked out. He’s also spent so long being low key alarmed and put upon that he rarely floofs b/c uh, this kind of seem like, not that big a deal, yet? And people often don’t notice this for quite a while but when they do they are impressed b/c he STARTLINGLY more mellow and confident than he appears?
Vriska: Her hair fluffing up around her in a static cloud when she’s mad. Also, her hair going all bristly and frizzled and disorganized when she’s flustered/caught in a mistake, and making her look like a cat that is trying to pretend it is not freaked out and has not been caught off guard and meant to do all of this.
Eridan: His little purple hair plume standing on end. Oh my god. You know that thig cockatoos do? Eridan is a cockatoo. All his hair floofs up and forward like a little fan around his face. And he’s flaring out his fins, too so it’s a damn display. Also. Can you picture. Eridan trying to act all cool and calm and collected and he’s all massively fluffed up like an alarmed bird.
The red cloak pooled around him, it sweeping across his face as he stared at Lup. A lump settled in his throat, teeth clenching at the liche stepped to the side as the trio he had gotten to know and care about all those years ago stood in front of them.
“ Lup. ” The first word out of his mouth, “ You have him… You have ̵̛̣̼̃ ̴̠̉̈ ̶̲̏̏ ̶̦͜͠ ̸̡͝ ̸̨͈̾͝ ̸̡̤̈́̀ ̷͈̌ ̶̻͔̂̎ ̴̖̍ ̴̼̎͝ ̶̢͒ ̸̮̔̋ͅ ̵̳̈́ ̶̫͗ ̴̉̈́ ”
Static clouded his speech, unaware it would be unheard.