roseandthorn: (has)
roseandthorn ([personal profile] roseandthorn) wrote in [community profile] wickedchouette2017-07-01 01:19 pm

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[Royce and Hadrian are between jobs, and these days, that nearly always means that they come to stay in Medford. Gwen always likes these times the best. It's nice to see both of them - skittery, tense Royce especially - be able to rest and relax, and she's not sure she can think of a sight she likes more than the two of them reclining by the fire, heads tilted back on couch cushions and boots thrown off into the corner.

She never says it, but she often finds herself wishing that they'd never leave.

And... Royce. Royce alone is a whole other story. She knows very well how he feels about her - it's not something he talks about, necessarily, but he doesn't need to. She knows him well enough by now that she can see it on his face as plain as day, and she sorely wishes that he could let himself believe in what she knows he sees, too - that she feels the exact same way.

But every time they talk - and they do talk a lot - she understands more and more, and it makes it very easy to be patient with him. They get by on little touches. They hold hands, sometimes. There have been kisses, usually before they go off to bed in separate rooms. Today, they both happen to be heading up the stairs at the same time, as Medford House settles down around them - it's late, and it's been a quiet night. Gwen tosses him a smile, reaches out to run a hand down his forearm, and then-- impulsively, but gently, she rests her fingers on his shoulder and stands on her tiptoes to press her lips to his.]
bywolves: (you're going to regret that.)

[personal profile] bywolves 2017-07-01 06:20 pm (UTC)(link)
[ The thing is, Royce knows she knows. And while he never thinks so firmly that he doesn't deserve her love, her affection, her attention, he doesn't necessarily think that it's in the cards for him. He doesn't think he deserves much at all, but then again, he doesn't think anybody deserves anything. He's not cursed by the gods, life is just cruel. His life in particular is one bad thing after another, the gods kicking sand in his face and laughing when he tries to pull himself up. But he's not special. Just at dirt level.

Having someone like Gwen, someone beautiful and kind and understanding -- having her love him as he is seems like a joke. He ignores it as much as he can, but he knows he's in deep. There's no going back - life without her seems emptier.

They move up the stairs together. It's nights like these that are the most relaxing, Royce after a glass of Montemorcey and time spent by the roaring fire, watching Hadrian clink glasses with the other good, hardworking men of the Wayward Street. He's loose and easy, and when Gwen runs a hand down his forearm, he shivers. He looks at her, and when she leans up, he sighs and meets the kiss. It's gentle, chaste, lingering - and when he pulls away, he doesn't go far, just rests their foreheads together. He puts one hand on her waist. ]


Hello. [ Royce says, soft. ]
bywolves: (i would've picked the treasure)

[personal profile] bywolves 2017-07-01 07:26 pm (UTC)(link)
Hm. Good wine. [ Royce murmurs, sliding his hand up her side and then back down to rest on her hip again. It's easier, when he feels safe. ] You own the only tavern that sells it. It's why I keep coming back.

[ Well, that's only half true. ]
bywolves: (distant stare.)

[personal profile] bywolves 2017-07-01 09:09 pm (UTC)(link)
[ His breath catches a little in his chest when she touches him. They're just - on the stairs, on a landing, and he's so close to her he can feel how warm she is. It's good, and he's got the itch to ruin it, to stop it before it can hurt him.

He's afraid. Afraid of her a little, maybe. He pulls away just a little, hesitating. ]


Is it? [ He asks, without meaning to. ]
Edited 2017-07-01 21:09 (UTC)
bywolves: (smirk.)

[personal profile] bywolves 2017-07-01 09:17 pm (UTC)(link)
[ He actually laughs, just a bit, a disbelieving sound. ]

Not - not until this very second, no. [ But she very rarely lies to him, so. ]
bywolves: (you're going to regret that.)

[personal profile] bywolves 2017-07-01 09:23 pm (UTC)(link)
[ It catches him off guard again - most of what she does catches him off guard, he finds, which he sort of likes. She tilts her head and he hums, leaning back in to press them together.

He has... absolutely no idea what he's doing. But it's nice, and he matches her for pace, just that little bit unsure, still. ]
bywolves: (what was that.)

[personal profile] bywolves 2017-07-01 09:27 pm (UTC)(link)
Yeah. [ Comes his murmured reply. He shivers, and rests both hands on her hips, running his fingertips along her sides as he presses another gentle kiss to her lips. At least he knows how to kiss, he thinks, even if he is rusty. ] I don't want to be anywhere else.
bywolves: (you're going to regret that.)

[personal profile] bywolves 2017-07-01 09:38 pm (UTC)(link)
[ Royce has no idea what the hell to do with this, but he goes with what feels right, which is to slide his hand down and shift her so that she can wrap it around him. He nudges her back a step, letting her lean against the wall, and brings one hand up to rest against her face as he kisses her again, this time like her's - less chaste.

He is very aware they're just on the stairs on a landing but he can't find it in him to care yet. ]

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bywolves: (hooded.)

[personal profile] bywolves 2017-07-31 02:53 am (UTC)(link)
[ It's later - a while later, Royce never keeps track. But time passes, and they eventually get a job. And it's been a long time, it feels like. Months, maybe, and they're out of practice. They get caught, and it's bad enough that they're just thrown into prison, without any sort of fanfare. And then, they're forgotten about. The same soldiers come every day to feed them and give them water, the bare minimum, but nothing happens. They're stuck in a dark, rotting cell for months.

When the Duchess and Duke finally come to their rescue, Royce and Hadrian are half dead. But they're grateful. Or as grateful as someone like Royce can be.

His first thought is Gwen, when they're out. The sun hurts his eyes and he's shaky and weak, but he wants to go home. To Gwen. So he does, he rides to Medford and practically collapses on her porch.

She takes care of him, and he sleeps for a full day, curled up clean and warm and fed in her bed, Hadrian being fussed over by the other girls. ]
bywolves: (gullible on the ceiling)

[personal profile] bywolves 2017-07-31 03:08 am (UTC)(link)
[ He's a little dizzy, but he's alright. Hungry, maybe, a little. Still tired, bone deep. He looks up at her like she's a sight for sore eyes - which she is. He shifts, and after a second of just trying to wake up all the way, he reaches for her carefully. This is real, right? He's pretty sure it's real, and all he wants, all he has wanted for the past few months, is to hold onto her in some way. ]
bywolves: (up)

[personal profile] bywolves 2017-07-31 03:12 am (UTC)(link)
[ He hums soft, relaxing a bit as he squeezes her hand. ]

A little. [ He says, voice cracked and rough. ]
bywolves: (i didn't break that.)

[personal profile] bywolves 2017-07-31 03:20 am (UTC)(link)
[ He lets go of her hand just for the moment, slowly pulling himself up to sit. His arms are a bit shaky, but it's not so bad. He leans back against the wall, and takes the glass she's poured, sipping from it.

He's not so out of sorts that he can't drink on his own, at least. ]


Thank you. [ He murmurs. ]
bywolves: (broods)

[personal profile] bywolves 2017-07-31 03:24 am (UTC)(link)
[ He lets his head thud back against the wall. ]

We were sloppy. [ Royce says, after a moment. He clears his throat. ] The winter we spent here left us out of practice. We got caught.
bywolves: (something strange (in the neighborhood))

[personal profile] bywolves 2017-07-31 03:34 am (UTC)(link)
By the people we were stealing from. And no. They're not after us. We were released with a pardon. Doubt they even remembered why they'd arrested us in the first place.

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