Title: Fools rush in
Summary: For heaven’s sake! He was nearly 30 years old. He did not leave anonymous Valentine’s cards on people’s desks. In September!
Word Count: ~620
Prompt: #75 Foolish
Author's Notes: Angsty fluff? Written while I didn’t quite have time to write, and posted while I don’t have time to post. Hopefully it hangs together. Unpolished and unbeta’d.
For heaven’s sake! He was nearly 30 years old. He did not leave anonymous Valentine’s cards on people’s desks. In September! What the hell did he think that would achieve? Stupid. Stupid. Stupid.
He sat and tried really, really hard not to stare at said desk. He would find it soon, hastily stuffed under a few letters in his inbox. Merlin always cleared his inbox. Oh, why had he bought a pink one? Pink! He had panicked at the store. - Your girlfriend will love this one, the clerk said. Merlin’s not a girl! And the poem! And he still had left it on the desk.
He had gotten drunk with the guys one night, and during one of those embarrassing late night drunk heart to heart conversations they started describing their perfect partner. And while doing so he realized he was describing Merlin. He had been a basket case ever since.
Oh God, he found it. He’s turning it around. Don’t stare, don’t stare, don’t stare.
Roses are red
Violets are blue
I wish I could tell
how I feel about you.
Please smile? No… No, that’s not it. Merlin is frowning. The card sails down in the trash.
- What’s that?
Oh crappety crap crap crap, how did he get over there so fast? And why is he talking when he can barely think?
Merlin glances up at him, following his eyes to the card in the trash.
- A prank.
- Looks like a valentine’s card?
- Someone’s idea of a joke I guess.
Merlin laughed a brief joyless laugh.
- Who would send me a Valentine’s? In September, not less.
He waits too long to reply and now Merlin thinks he agrees with what he said. So he flees.
- I’ve gotta go to the loo.
Somehow he ends up in the stairway in the back, not knowing where to go after that. Oh, brain, where art thou?
And of course, Merlin follows. Because when he is sad, Merlin appears. It’s a bit like magic, really.
- Gwaine. The loo’s the other way.
His voice echoes against the barren surfaces. He leans his back against the wall. Stupid. Stupid. Stupid. 3. 2. 1…
- You sent the card?
- But it’s pink.
- I panicked and my brain melted.
He kicks his heel against the wall.
- The poem?
- It sounded like something Arthur might write.
- Yeah, well… Brain melt.
The familiar soft chuckle almost makes him smile.
He notices that his shoes seriously needs some polish and the concrete floor has lots of little dark specks and... Merlin’ hand on his neck makes him look up. Merlin is looking at him with those lovely blue eyes, looking like he doesn’t know what to think. It’s scary, so he looks away again.
- When did this happen?
- Always and last week.
He swallows hard as Merlin’s thumb moves against his jaw line. He should have shaved.
- I… need a little time to wrap my head around this…
That was just another way to say: Not gonna happen, trying to let you down easy.
He nods and knows he’s ruined everything they had. He knows he must be brave, but here in the stairway with Merlin’s hand on his neck there is no bravery to find. Stupid. Stupid. Stupid.
The words Ok, done! needs at least two rounds of processing in his head before they register, but the hand in his hair and the lips that press against his helps. They help a lot, so he listens to them. Who needs a brain anyway?