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and in the rain there was us

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It snows in Whitestone during the colder months, and when it’s too warm to snow it rains-- rains more than any other place Vex has lived. She likes it, likes the change in weather. Likes the way that even when it’s warm, it’s still almost cold. Her body often hates it, true, but she’s never lacking in warmth-- not now, not with Percy and Zahra.

There’s something about the rain as it falls tonight, the way it sounds as it hits the roof and windows of her house as she lays awake in bed listening, her lovers on either side of her, both sleeping soundly. There’s little wind so the sound is undiluted. There’s something about the rain that’s almost... not melancholic, exactly, but something that makes her feel pensive, introspective as she takes it in.

She shifts, loosening Percy’s grip on her as she sits up against the headboard of the bed and looks at the two of them.

Zahra’s face is elegant even at rest, features fine and almost reminscent of a statue carved from red marble, and in this moment Vex is sure that she must be next to the most beautiful woman in all the planes. Zahra carries a certain grace, something that she wears as elegantly as a cloak or gown. Vex has never seen anything quite like it, never seen anybody quite like Zahra in any way.

She flicks her gaze to her other side, lets her eyes skim across the sharp angles of Percy’s face; down the regal slope of his nose, his cheek bones, the unshaved stubbled jawline. He looks younger when he’s asleep, more at peace. It’s like a weight lifts off of him, one that he carries with him at all times even when he home and safe. She feels immensely privileged to be one of the few people able to see him like this.

She feels the stirring at her side and glances down as two eyelids flutter open to reveal moon-white eyes that blearily take the sight before them in before processing it all.

“Vex?” Zahra asks, blinking sleepily up at the half-elf.

Vex bites down on her bottom lip. “I’m so sorry, darling. Did I wake you?”

“Yes, but it’s fine.” She shifts, turning slightly on her side so she can look at her without craning her neck. “Why are you awake?”

Vex gives a little shrug. “I was just thinking about things.”

“Do you want to share, or are these thoughts ones for yourself?” Zahra asks, her voice kind and patient and understanding. She will not push if Vex doesn’t want to give.

Percy remains asleep and she’s not surprised, because once he’s out he’s out until either late morning comes or he’s shaken awake. (Or, more often than she’d like, when he’s woken shaking and screaming from nightmares-- or by her, or on the rare occasion Zahra; Vex doesn’t like to think about that, none of them do.) He grumbles nonetheless at their hushed voices and shifts closer to them, tightening the arm he has thrown around Vex’s middle.

She smiles fondly down at him, absently reaching to run her fingers through the almost feathery tufts of white.

“I’m just thinking that I am very lucky,” Vex says finally, her voice catching slightly on the word ‘lucky’ because... well, she’s never really thought of herself that way before. But suddenly here she is, in a city that she calls her own in a house that she calls a home with two people who for some reason seem to love her despite her abundance of flaws and the selfish greed that she’s been ridiculed for her entire life.

Zahra’s expression softens and she reaches up to cup Vex’s cheek, leaning in to plant a kiss against the tip of her nose. “As are we,” she says honestly, earnestly. “I’m forever grateful for you yourself and for you bringing the three of us together. I know Percival feels the same way.”

“I hope so,” she admits with a sniffle.

“He does,” Zahra says again, glancing past Vex to the sleeping man. “He often struggles with expressing emotion and using his heart instead of his head, but he’s never been very good at hiding how deeply he loves and respects you.”

Vex smooths her hand through his hair again and he mumbles something unintelligible before snuggling closer to her. She smiles softly at him before letting her gaze shift back to the woman on her other side. “And then there’s you.”

“And then there’s me,” Zahra agrees, and Vex shivers when she feels a tail wrap loosely around the leg she has thrown half over the tiefling’s. The contact is oddly reassuring.

“We hated each other at first, didn’t we?” Vex says in amusement, and Zahra laughs then, muffling it against her own hand so not to wake their sleeping partner.

“Hate is a strong word, darling. More like we saw too much of ourselves in each other and didn’t know what to do with that at the start.” Zahra’s smile is impossibly soft as she speaks, before slowly shifting into something a little devilish. “You were always a little bossy, though, and things haven’t changed.”

Vex snorts. “Says the one who literally gets off on telling people what to d- mmf.”

Her words are muffled by Zahra rolling her eyes and promptly pressing their lips together. After a moment Vex relaxes into it, lets the banter fall away until there’s nothing but the warmth of the man and woman at her sides and the soft and familiar kisses.

Zahra draws back, settling her head against Vex’s shoulder and looking up at her. “It’s quite late, darling. Perhaps it’s best to try to sleep again.”

“I think it’s a full moon tonight,” Vex says absently, starting to wiggle in Percy’s grasp so she can slide back to where she sleeps. Knowing her girlfriend’s fascination and adoration, she asks, “Did you see it?”

Zahra smiles fondly. “I haven’t seen her tonight, but I don’t have to to know that she’s beautiful.”

Vex settles back down against the pillows, tugging Zahra so she’s closer and so she’s tucked snugly between the tiefling and the human, both of them radiating heat. “I feel as if the moon may be the fourth member of this little relationship we have, Zahra.”

Zahra’s tail moves so it lays across both Vex’s hips and part of Percy, the three of them all connected by touch. “Don’t get jealous, darling.”

“Why would I be jealous? If I have room in my heart for two dear loves then why can’t you? Frankly, I’m flattered that I can compete with a celestial body.”

After a while the world fades to the darkness of the room, the gentle snoring of Percy and the deepening of Zahra’s breath as she falls asleep, the soft pitter-patter of rain against the house. Vex rests her forehead against Zahra’s and laces her fingers through the shorter hair at the back of Percy’s neck and smiles to herself, a feeling of rightness washing over her as she lets herself slip away into dreams.