Title: Of Kitchens and Couches and Many Things
Character/s: Gwaine, Leon, Percival
Summary: Leon reflects on how many things are different. From the kitchen couch.
Warnings: Modern AU, polyamorous relationship, mention of prejudice
Word Count: 998
Prompt: #214: Dancing
Author's Notes: I'm sorry for being late again. Dedicated to my very dear friend tracionn who introduced me to kitchen couches.
Things were different.
For one, there was a couch in their kitchen now.
Gwaine brought it with him when he and Merlin gave up their flat. After Leon pointed out that there wasn’t enough room in the living room for two couches it took only a few seconds of surveying the flat for Gwaine to decide that the kitchen was the next best place for it. Not the spare bedroom that none of them used any more or the very logical idea that maybe the flat didn’t need a second couch; no, Gwaine proudly proclaimed, after all three of them lugged it into the kitchen, that the couch had found its new home.
Percy, despite Leon’s hope for a rational second opinion, agreed with him.
It would be a deliberate denial of the facts if Leon didn’t admit to warming up to the kitchen couch. It offered a comfortable place to sit when the dining table felt too small or too formal and it made it exceptionally easy to hang out in the kitchen when Percy was cooking and Leon wasn’t in the mood to be alone. It was different, something Leon never would’ve considered before Gwaine suggested it, but it was wonderful just the same.
Not unlike the relationship Leon now found himself in.
He watched (from the kitchen couch) as Percy swatted Gwaine away from the raw cookie dough he was trying to drop onto a cookie sheet. Gwaine always volunteered to assist Percy in exchange for his share of the spoils but his impatience often got to him just before the actual baking step. Leon knew Percy’s warnings about salmonella and Gwaine’s arguments for living on the edge by heart. It was familiar and comfortable and yet.
Things were different.
There hadn’t been big changes right away, even though agreeing to start the relationship had felt like a world-altering change at the time. Leon and Percy continued to share a flat; Gwaine moved in after three weeks of pouting whenever he had to go back to his. They still worked their respective jobs, they still made time to hang out with their friends, and they still had bad movie, pizza, and beer night only now it ended with all three of them in the same bed, sharing touches and a pleasant lightheadedness that couldn’t be blamed solely on the beer.
There was an adjustment period, there were growing pains, and there was a very surprising amount of talking about how each of them felt about the relationship. Hopes, fears, even a few rules set about communication, intimacy, and sex so that no one would feel left out or less cared for. Leon suspected a lot of the over-clarification had been for his benefit since he had come into the relationship with the most reservations. The structures, the understandings they came to, did actually set some of his worries at ease and from then he’d embraced it all as best he could.
There were still issues to face. They weren't always well received in public. Leon had seen glances, heard derogatory whispers, and been on the receiving end of a particularly searing glare he didn’t think he could forget any time soon. He would have a hell of a time explaining the relationship to his parents – his father – if the time ever came for that sort of thing.
Five months of having a kitchen couch made Leon think that the time for that sort of thing wasn’t that far away.
It was Gwaine who came over to break him out of his thoughts and pull him into the argument. It was always Gwaine; Percy’s tactic was more to wait until Leon had analyzed every possible thought in his head and needed to come back up for air. He appreciated their different approaches and how somehow, between the two of them, they always knew which one was more suited to the situation.
"Tell him," Gwaine demanded, pulling Leon off the kitchen couch by his arm, "that no one's ever died from eating raw cookie dough."
"I don't know why you would think I know whether or not that's true."
"Leon's on my side," Percy concluded, whisking the nearly empty bowl of dough away before Gwaine could say otherwise.
"He's not-" Gwaine looked between the two of them. "That wasn't an answer!"
"On my side," Percy repeated, making Leon shake his head.
Leon reached out a hand, catching Gwaine's arm and drawing him near. "I'm not on anyone's side," he said into Gwaine's hair. "You have every right to make yourself sick eating raw cookie dough if you want to."
Gwaine got through half a nod in agreement before the rest of the sentence caught up to him. He went dangerously still and then attacked Leon with both hands, tickling him mercilessly, using private and privileged knowledge to his advantage. Leon failed to mount a defense and soon found himself on his back on the kitchen couch, begging for a truce in short, gasping pleas that stopped only when Gwaine leaned down to kiss him. He surrendered to the touch only to be rescued a few minutes later after Percy had all the cookies in the oven. Percy pulled Leon to his feet and into his arms, kissing Leon slowly, properly, as he started to sway in the warm center of the kitchen.
They danced – first Leon and Percy, then Leon and Gwaine, and finally all three, together – while the cookies baked. They bickered more about the dangers, real or perceived, of uncooked foods. They took the finished cookies into the living room and started a movie but didn't finish it, instead ending the night in sweaty, sated pile on the floor with Percy swearing for the thousandth time that they needed a bigger couch.
Leon hummed in agreement as Percy's fingers ran through his hair and Gwaine nuzzled sleepily against his chest.
Things were different.
Immeasurably and infinitely different and yet.
Leon loved them just the same.