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Klance Au Month 2019

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Klance AU Month
February 1st, 2019
Day One: Coffee Shop AU

*New Year's Resolutions*

If Lance was good at one thing, it was annoying people. Especially cute people. Especially cute guys that worked at five in the morning at empty coffee shops.

It had all started New Year’s Day when Lance begrudgingly got up to go to the gym. It was four-thirty giving him enough time to go to the gym, shower, and get to class on time. Instead of the gym and New Year's resolutions, Lance had ended up at the coffee shop.

Lance went to this coffee shop all the time, admittedly a lot later in the day, so Lance was not expecting a cute guy to be working there. The baristas normally knew his orders and Lance normally knew their names. So he was surprised to see somebody he didn’t know working there. But the guy had nice arms, a cute bed-head that was in desperate need of a trim, and the most beautiful eyes Lance had ever seen, even though they didn’t look fully awake.

That first morning the guy, Keith his name tag said, didn’t so much as look at Lance as he took his order, shoved the cup in his hand and went back to minding the counter.

From there it became a game to Lance. He was determined to get the guy to look up at him.

Could he get Keith to smile? Didn’t seem likely. Could he get Keith to recognize him? Those first few weeks it didn’t seem to register that Lance was the same guy coming in at five in the morning to get a coffee, cream and a hint of cinnamon. Could he get Keith to talk? Only a few gruff sentences.

And that’s when Lance decided to get annoying. He would come up with the most complicated drinks day after day just waiting for Keith to look up at him. He could see Keith getting more and more frustrated as he continued to jabber at him, but he did nothing besides give a little pout.

But Lance was the youngest of five siblings. He knew how to annoy people to get what he wanted. And he knew Keith’s patience would eventually break. He could see it in the frustrated glares. He could see it in the way he clenched his jaw. Lance would get him to break.

One day Keith must have been especially moody because he clicked his tongue as Lance walked in.

Lance flashed his brights smile and continued to make up a drink that almost certainly did not exist. Halfway through the order, Keith put his pen down, entirely giving up.

“Okay what is your problem,” Keith asked. “What do you want?”

“I’d settle for your number,” Lance said with a wink.

Keith let out a huff that blew his bangs up, but he didn’t say anything. And to Lance, that meant he hadn’t said no. In fact, he didn’t look all that mad.

Over the next weeks Keith finally began talking to Lance. In the empty coffee shop, they would talk about themselves, small smiles crossing their faces.

Lance learned that Keith was an only child, that he loved dogs, that the only reason he worked this early was because it meant nobody was there at all or it was so busy Keith didn’t have to make small talk.

He learned Keith was a science major but that he also liked art. And he learned that someday Keith had his eyes set on making animated films about science for children. Lance also learned that Keith scrunched his nose when he laughed, which may or may not have been the cutest thing in the entire world.

But he still hadn’t gotten Keith’s number.

On day in late February, Lance's alarm didn’t go off. Or maybe it did and Lance had turned it off or something. But the point was that it was now seven o’clock and if Lance didn’t hurry, he might miss Keith before he went off to class. Because Lance knew that like himself, Keith sometimes had class at eight, and it would just be his luck that he would miss Keith today.

Lance rushed past the bathroom, not bothering to fix his hair or wash his face, pulling on a hoodie and his coat. He looked in the mirror on his way to the door and groaned. He had pimples and eye bags and his hair was a mess, but he continued to the door and stomped into his snow boots.

Lance felt his backpack thump across his back as he sprinted to the shop, several times close to skidding on the iced sidewalk. But eventually he made it.

It was a lot busier than it was at five. Lance bounced on his toes as he joined the line, trying to see if Keith was still there.

When he finally could make out the counter he could see in Keith place was a very pretty girl, who looked nice enough but was not Keith. His heart sunk. He waited to get his drink and move on. It wasn’t until this moment that Lance realized how much better his mornings were because of Keith.

When It was finally Lance’s turn, he kept his head down, in part overwhelmed not knowing what to get, in part trying not to cry and become that over dramatic baby his friends always teased him of being.

“What can I get for ya,” the girl at the counter asked.

“I got this one ‘Lura,” a rough voice said.

And there he was, strong arms, ragged bed-head, and dark eyes that melted Lances soul, “Keith!”

“Hey,” Keith said.

“I thought I missed you.”

“I was working the machine in the back. We normally have a few people here during the rush hour.” Keith looked at the grumpy people behind Lance, “Er. Go sit down. I’ll meet you in a sec.”

Lance sat down in a booth and tried to keep himself from smiling. Eventually Keith came over with two coffee cups and handed one to Lance, “When you weren't here this morning, I thought something had happened. That you weren't coming anymore,” Keith said stiffly.

“Naw. Just missed my alarm.”

Keith made a ‘pffftt’ sound and gently reached across to touch the back of Lance’s head, “I see that.”

Lance felt a blush creep across the back of his neck up to his ears, “I wasn’t...I like talking to you. I wouldn’t not come here on purpose...to like, upset you, just so you know.” Lance looked down trying to collect himself, it wasn’t like himself to get flustered.

Pink spread across Keith’s face, but he continued to laugh softly into his hand, “Well, I gotta go back,” Keith said pointing at the counter.

Lance nodded, sneaking a look at Keith as he walked back to the counter.

Every so often Keith would catch his gaze across the shop. There would be this soft moment where Lance could barely contain himself, feeling hot and cold, heavy and light, and just tingly all over. But then Keith would look away and Lance would have to wait for their eyes to meet again.

Lance took a sip of his drink and realized it was plain coffee with cream and cinnamon.

Lance looked at his phone and realized that he needed to leave if he wanted to get to class on time. He waved at Keith who smiled back and the made his way out of the warm embrace of the shop.

Lance was halfway to class when something caught his eye. He turned the coffee cup in his hand, nestled between a doodle of a hippo, a shark and a lion was a scrawl of numbers with an arrow saying “my number.”

Lance smiled and immediately typed the number into his phone.

Chapter Text

Klance AU Month
February 2, 2019
Day Two: Galtean Klance

 

*To Guard a Prince*

The first time Lance was introduced to Prince Keith he thought he was a little odd. It wasn’t just the lack of height, by Galra standards the prince was small, but he was still the same size as Lance. It wasn’t the lack of purple skin or furry ears, or the fact he looked almost altean, no it was his temper.

He was broody at best, but altogether he just acted unprincly. He rolled his eyes at officials, he didn’t try to smile or charm the way Prince Lotor did, he simply went about his schedule as quietly and aloofly as possible before turning in for the night, sometimes without so much as a word.

To Lance that seemed lonely, but so was the way of royalty. Lance was a distant relative of Princess Allura on Altea, and having grown up in the castle, he had gotten used to her mild temper, how she was made to keep a distance from everyone that was deemed ordinary.

But Lance wasn’t ordinary. He had fought hard to make sure of that.

It was traditional, the greatest honor for an Altean warrior, to be chosen as a royal bodyguard. It dated back to the times of war between the Galra and Altean empires. Now, as a show of peace, chosen Alteans guarded the Galra royals and the chosen Galra protected Altean royalty.

But as far as Lance was concerned, the prince didn’t look like he wanted protection. And more importantly he didn’t seem to need it.

Every morning Lance watched the prince spar. He was a capable warrior, probably equal to Lance himself, despite what the rumor claimed. The rumors that he was a half-bread like the Crown Prince, Lotor. That Prince Keith had been raised far away on a primitive planet with little to no training until the Blade of Malmora, the royal spy network, had picked him up and trained him.

Lance was fascinated by the rumors. He couldn’t help it. He may or may not have developed a small, absolutely tini-tiny, would not get in the way of his job, crush.

Not that he had even talked to the prince. The prince’s attitude gave Lance the distinct feeling that he should keep his distance and not interact. But that didn’t mean he couldn’t dream, especially when he was just stuck here guarding a door.

“Hey Lance?” Shiro asked one morning. Shiro was the human guard that had come with the prince from his planet. Because of his status he was made the prince’s night guard, but as far as Lance was concerned, the man was his superior.

“Yes sir?”

“I was wondering if I could switch shifts with you tomorrow.”

“Isn’t the ambassador meeting tomorrow?” Lance felt his nerves panic. “I haven’t escorted the prince at a party before. I haven’t been to such an important function like that. Are you sure it will be okay?”

Shiro rolled his eyes, “Trust me. You don’t have to worry. Keith’s normally there for about ten minutes before he ditches.”

“If you’re sure.”

Shiro slapped Lance on the back. It didn’t hurt, not with the heavy armor plating of his Altean armor, “Thanks you’re a big help.”

“No problem.”

And it wasn’t that big of a deal. Lance escorted the prince. He got to see him decked out in his traditional Malmoran style suit, which Lance thought suited him really, really well. He tucked the image away in his brain for later when he was stuck guarding the door all night, which admidaly wasn’t the best thing to be doing to your boss, but Lance got bored enough to eventually stop caring about his little fantasies.

Keith mulled around for precisely eleven minutes before grabbing the nearest bottle of nunvil and slipping out, Lance in tow.

From there it was door duty.

Lance was just on the verge of falling asleep, several hours into the night, when he heard a bang inside the room. Lance listened to the rustle, but it didn’t sound like a scuffle. Plus the prince could take care of himself right? Lance was caught, one hand out to the door, trying to decide if he should invade the prince’s privacy or risk his prince getting kidnapped or worse.

There was another bang. Lance opened the door, sword raised, “Ummm. Your Highness?” He called.

The prince was alright, well, for the most part. He was clutching his foot, obviously having just rammed it into a table in the middle of his sitting area.

The prince looked up at Lance, his eyes clouded. Lance spied the almost empty bottle of liquor on the floor. “Where’s Shiro?”

“Uh...I’m taking his shift tonight,” Lance said sheathing his blade. Then, “Are you alright?”

“M’fine,” he slurred. He was obviously not alright.

“Well I just thought you were in trouble, so I’ll just be going now, sorry to disturb you,” Lance squeaked out making his way back to the door.

“Hey,” the prince called out, “Why don’t you talk to me? I see you always smiling and chatting with everyone else, but you don’t talk to me.”

Lance looked back. The prince had a pout on his face. But Lance was too dazed to try and figure out if he should find the prince endearing or be worried.

“I didn’t think you wanted to talk to me Your Highness.”

The prince waved his hand away at the word, “Just Keith.”

“Okay. Just Keith,” Lance said with a smile.

Keith chuckled, “I didn’t even want this ‘highness’ stuff in the first place,” he said plopping on his sofa, “I was just normal, I mean I was an orphan and stuff, but my life was normal. Now I can't even talk to cute boys cuz they’re my guards.”

Lance felt his cheeks flare up.

“Shit,” the prince said softly.

“Er. I think I should go back to my post now, your-- Keith. Just Keith. Okay. Bye,” Lance jumbled out.

When Lance got out the to his post he suddenly felt very stupid. How could be botch that all up?

But then…

So the prince thought he was cute?

***
On Lance’s next shift, Prince Keith called him inside to his office. Lance tried to look relaxed, but it was definitely difficult in his stiff armor.

Keith pinched the bridge of his nose. He was sitting at his desk, and totally not cute in his casual clothing that Lance normally didn’t get to see. “I want to apologize for last night. It seems I’m not the best behaved drunk.”

“Don’t worry about it,” Lance let out a chuckle, “it was kind of nice to see you loosen up.”

“Still it wasn’t appropriate,” Keith said. His dark eyes met Lance’s. Lance was captured by that dark stare. Maybe that’s why he wasn’t supposed to look Keith in the eye.

“Oh course, Your Highness.”

“No. I didn’t mean it like that. I would like to be friends.”

“Okay?”

“I just don’t want to get you in trouble and honestly I thought I was quite rude last night. From what I studied, Alteans are normally very reserved and modest.”

“I guess you aren’t wrong,” Lance shrugged, “But I’m not the norm.”

Keith’s stiff shoulder finally relaxed and he held out a hand, “So friends?”

“If you want,” Lance grabbed Keith’s forearm in the typical Galran style. It felt so intimate. He could feel Keith’s pulse, feel his muscles under the shirt.

Keith eye’s met his again, “Do you want? To be friends?”

“Yes.”

***
From there they became almost inseparable. Well, Lance was his guard, but they definitely talked and became closer from there.

Keith had him spar in the morning and they taught each other different techniques. Keith would lean on Lance, asking him different questions he still didn’t know; it turned out he had only found out he was a prince a few years ago and without a Dayack, he still had a lot to learn. There were also a few time Keith had to talk Lance out of trouble, because as it turned out, Lance was a lot more talkative than was good for him.

Lance even switched shifts with Shiro permanently so that he could talk with Keith late into the night.

They became friends. Lance told Keith about his life in the castle. How he had worked against the odds to become a guard, how he wasn’t disappointed by being assigned to Keith.

Keith told Lance about his home planet Earth, how Shiro had practically raised him till the Blade came and found him. How he was just trying to get through all this prince stuff until Zarkon finally just got sick of him and let him do whatever he wanted. How when this was all over, he would show Lance Earth.

“What do the marks mean?” Keith said gently brushing Lance’s cheek.

“The legends say it’s a sign, that we have magic, that we are the stars chosen people,” Lance said leaning into the touch, “I think that’s a bit much.”

Keith looked down at his lips and back to Lance’s eyes. Stars, Lance found himself falling deeper and deeper into those eyes. They weren’t black, not purple, not blue, not grey, but some combination of all those colors, like a small dark galaxy caught in Keith’s eyes.

Keith leaned in. And Lance couldn't move, even though he knew he should. Instead he let lips meet his and then he was melting, kissing back, and melting again. Hands cupped his face and his own hands found their way into Keith’s hair.

In that perfect moment, Lance knew he fucked up.

He pulled back.

“I’m sorry,” Keith said. He let his hands fall into his lap, “I’m not really good at reading social situations.”

“No,” Lance stuttered out. “I wanted to...but”

“But?”

“Keith, it’s my job to protect you. I shouldn't be doing this. I really like you, but I don’t want to get in trouble. I like my job.”

“More than me?”

“What?”

“You like your job more than me?”

“I...Keith, I can’t like you like this. I have to protect you.”

“Okay,” Keith said, his voice cold.

Keith wouldn’t look at Lance after that. And for Lance’s part, he kept his distance, he knew his training, what was expected of him. It was simply a prince and his guard.

It was cold glares, that turned to disdain, to finally numb looks. It was friends to strangers. It was all the warmth Lance had ever felt in his life suddenly sucked away.

It was long nights in front of a silent door that wasn’t going to open.

***

Lance had about a half a varga before he would get off his shift and he could finally get some sleep. He had done all this for Keith. The distance was for his safety. But suddenly the job didn’t even feel worth it, not without Keith’s appraising look.

And then he heard it.

A thump. The bang of a blastor. And Keith’s scream.

Lance didn’t even register what happened next. But he was there at Keith’s side. His sword was out and impaled in the dark shadow that had been huddled over his prince.

The figure stumbled and fell. And Lance turned to Keith.

But Keith still looked worried. Why did he look so worried? He was safe now. Lance touched his side and sucked in a breath. Oh.

And then his vision went black.

***

The blood had made the injury seem a lot worse than it really was. Lance would be out of the hospital in less than a week.

The door of his room opened, Lance lit up expecting a familiar brooding face.

But it wasn’t the prince. Or at least, not his prince. “Your Highness,” Lance stammered bending his head. He clutched his side in pain.

“It’s alright soldier. You’ve been through a lot. At ease.”

“Er. Thank you Your Highness.”

Lance looked at the prince. He was everything a prince should be. Charming. Calm. Confident. Despite the rumors, despite him being half-galra he had beat the odds and gained his citizens respect. But he still wasn’t Keith.

“You’re probably wondering why I’m here.”

Lance nodded, “Kei… I mean, Prince Keith is alright, right?”

“He’s fine. Thanks to your efforts,” Lotor said smiling down at him fondly. “I’m very impressed by your show of loyalty. I came here to tell you that you will be transferred to my guard when the doctors let you go.”

Lance nodded, looking down at his hands.

“That’s all right isn’t it?”

“It would be a great honor, Your Highness.”

“Very good. I look forward to your recovery then.”

Lance bowed his head as the prince made his way out of the room.

A million thoughts swam through his head. There really was no way to deny that honor was there? Of course not. Lotor wouldn’t take a no. That was for sure. What would Keith think? Had Keith asked for this? Sure Lance had jumped in the way of the assassin, but before that? It wasn’t like they were getting on well. Keith must have asked for Lance to transfer. He was only kind enough and managed to snag Lance a better position.

Lance folded into himself. He didn't deserve to fall in love with a prince. It had distracted him. Made him weak. This was for the best.

***
It had been a week and Lance still hadn’t seen Prince Keith. It wasn’t like he needed to see him. He just need to affirm that he was really okay. But Prince Lotor’s schedule was a lot more busy than Keith’s had been, so he hadn’t had the time to sneak off and check.

Lance did hear rumors that Keith would be partaking on a special ambassador mission, really it was a glorified blade mission, making sure all their neighboring planets had enough supplies, weren’t getting into civil wars and the like. And Lance wouldn’t have to see him again. Not for a very long time. And maybe he could finally stop feeling so much pain.

After another long day, Lance made his way to the barracks to get some much needed sleep.

He wasn’t expecting to run into Keith.

He really should use the servants stairs.

But Lance hadn’t used the servants stairs, and as he made his way around a corner, there he was.

He let out a little gasp on seeing him. He bowed deeply, if only to get his eyes off Keith before those eyes found his.

He waited for Keith to pass him, staring down at his boots.

“Leave us,” the prince said.

Lance snapped up. He watched Shiro salute Keith in almost a teasing fashion before moving down the hall.

Lance bowed his eyes again. He would not break. Not in front of Keith. “Are you okay Your Highness?”

Crossed arms. “I should be asking you that.”

 

“I’m fine. Thank you for your concern.”

“I see you got moved up the ranks. That’s what you wanted right?” There was bitterness there.

Maybe Keith hadn’t ordered the transfer, Lance thought for a fleeting moment before he pushed those feelings down. “Your Hiighness?”

“Your job is the most important thing right?”

“It’s better like this. You can’t get hurt.”

“Sure.”

Lance’s eyes snapped on Keith’s face. Then those eyes were on him and he couldn’t look away, pulled into their depths. “Keith. I didn’t want this at all. You think I wanted to be Prince Lotor’s guard? I wanted to protect you. But I couldn’t. I loved you too much and I got distracted and then you got hurt.”

They both sucked in a breath, everything unsaid filling the space between them, the tension like a coming thunderstorm.

“You love me?” Keith murmured.

Lance broke the gaze bowing again, “I’m sorry Your Highness. I’ll get back to work now.” Lance broke into a stride.

A strong arm grappled his elbow. “Don’t run,” Lance tried to break free. Then Keith said, “ I love you too.”

Lance stopped. Turned. Keith dropped his hold on Lance. He covered his face. “I love you too. So stop being stupid. It wasn’t your fault. It wasn’t my fault.”

“You didn’t want me transfered.”

“No,” Keith scoffed.

Lance hesitated, a hand outstretched, he pulled Keith’s hands from his face. Lance knew those eyes. They weren’t lying.

Lance pulled Keith into his chest. Keith met him halfway, grabbing onto armor, trying to find a solid hold on Lance, like he never wanted to let him go.

“Come with me,” Keith said. He pushed his forehead against Lance’s “I still need another guard. Come with us.”

Lance didn’t answer. Instead he pulled Keith’s face to his. He was barely able to kiss him because he couldn’t stop smiling.

Chapter Text

Klance AU Month
February 3, 2019
Day Three: Mermaid

 

*Lost at Sea*

It’s Lance‘s 21st birthday. He’s finally a legal adult in mer-age. Which means he can finally use magic to grow legs and go up to the surface.

“Do you want to wait for a better day Lance? There’s a storm coming. Stormy seas are different on the surface. Shouldn’t you wait for a clear day?” his father asks.

But Lance can’t be persuaded. He’s already decided, this was the day he was going to venture out and finally see the human world. The world he’s been so fascinated by for his whole life. The world with strange objects and even stranger people.

So Lance makes his way to the surface, and perhaps in his impatience takes the potion too early. He kicks his new legs in tandem, still used to one instead of two. The legs are weaker, but he makes it to the surface before his new lungs give out.

When he finally pops up, he’s met by a stormy sea. Rolling hills of water that he can’t possibly compete with. It not the fun currents he’s used to. It’s a monster looming over him, that drags him under, throws him and chases him trying to drown him.

He’s tumbling.

And Lance can’t breath. Can't figure out which way is up or down, the way he’s supposed to go and everything turns black.

***

Lance wakes up a rough texture under him, in his mouth. He spits up water and sand, his eyes fuzzy and swollen from the sea.

“Easy does it,” A warm hand on Lance’s back helps him to sit. Lance doesn’t think he’s ever known heat like this. He looks up into sharp dark eyes. “You alright?” The man says.

He’s dressed in white and red, he has a cloth in his hand and is holding it out to Lance who doesn’t know to take it. Lance notices that he doesn't have on anything, but he doesn't know to be embarrassed. The man’s hair is dark and long and...dry. Lance doesn't have words to describe it.

Lance looks out to the sea. It’s the only thing familiar here...and yet he doesn’t know why, but he doesn't have to be near it. He doesn’t want to touch it.

“Where am I?”

“Er. Do you mean like what town or…” unspoken words, worry clearly visible in those eyes.

“Where am I, where am I.”

“You’re on a beach. In Texas. Do you know where that is?”

Lance shakes his head, “I can’t remember anything. I know I was in the water. There was a storm and,” Lance shakes his head again.

“Come on. I’ll help you out. I’m a lifeguard,” He tacks on, “It’s my job.”

“You guard lives?”

“I guess. On the beach at least.”

He helps Lance to stand and drapes the cloth over his shoulders. Lance holds it to his chest, reveling in the sensation. He decides he likes it. He takes a step, but it’s like his legs don’t know how to move.

“Woah. Easy there,” the lifeguard says he drapes his arm around Lance’s waist and helps him up the beach. The lifeguard’s face is red and he won’t look at Lance. He wonders why.

He brings Lance to a small shack that he recognizes as a house. It’s rather small though, with no accommodations to sleep, and a large red cross on the front.

“My name’s Keith. Do you...do you know what your name is.”

 

“Nope,” Lance says. Keith hands him a dark cloth thing. He thinks they’re called clothes. He stares at them, knowing he’s supposed to put them on but not knowing how. He looks to Keith. They seem to be a similar shape to the one’s on his legs. So he figures they go on the bottom half. They’re warm. Lance didn’t even realize he was cold.

Keith hands him a shirt. This is a more difficult task. He has to ask for Keith’s help, who helps guide him into the strange holes until the material is flat against his chest. He can’t help but run his hand over the cloth. It’s warm and smooth.

“I think I’m going to need to take you to the hospital. Make sure you are okay.”

“Okay,” Lance says because he doesn’t know what else to do. He’s put his trust in this person and he can't do anything else. Lance feels a tightness in his chest. He must have felt lost before. He puts a name to the feeling in his chest. Helpless.

Keith helps Lance into a very strange object that moves fast. Keith says it’s a car. Lance is in part terrified, in part having the best moment of his life. He stares out through the clear but solid walls and watches this strange world slip by, with other cars and people and building that Lance can’t even begin to describe.

The doctor turns out to be a nice woman who looks in his ears and taps his knees and does a bunch of other strange things. From there, Keith takes Lance to something called a police station where a big man with white and black hair and makes Lance stand in front of a wall and flashes a light at him. Then he takes all of Lance’s fingers and smudges them in ink.

Keith and him sit in chairs and the big man looks at a box. “Sorry Keith. He’s not coming up in the system. I’ll keep digging, but he’s effectively a John Doe.”

“Thanks, Shiro. What do we do from here.”

“Nothing. The hospital can’t take him because there’s nothing wrong with him. We can’t really take him because he’s not a minor. At best we would take him to a mental institution.”

“What’s a John Doe?” Lance asks.

“It’s the name we give to people who we don’t know what their name is or where they’re from.”

“Are you going to call me John now?” Lance asks Keith.

“Er. Would you like to be called something else?”

“I don’t know. What are the options.”

“Uh. We’ll talk about it.” Keith turns back to Shiro, “Is it like against the law if I help him out?”

“No. But are you sure you want to?” Shiro give Lance a strange look, “He seems a little…”

“He just needs some help Shiro.”

“Okay. Okay. I’ll check on you guys later then.”

From there Keith takes Lance to the place he calls home. Lance knows that word. But it makes him sad. He wonders where his home is. Keith’s home is only a little bit larger than the place on the beach. But Lance loves it.

It looks warm, which Lance decides is his favorite thing.

“You’re okay with dogs, right?”

“Dogs?”

“Er. You know. Animals? It’s like a big. Let me just show you.” Keith opens the door and comes back a few minutes later with a big four-legged creature straining on a rope. Lance knows he hasn’t seen one of these before, but it somehow feels familiar.

He walks forward and touches the creature’s snout. The, what did Keith call it, dog, licks him and Lance laughs.

“His name’s Kosmo.”

“Kosmo?” Lance says. The dog barks back wagging his tail. Lance throws his arms around the dog, loving the sensation of warmth, the softness under his hands.

Keith brings him into the house and he sits on what’s called a couch. Kosmo stretches out on his lap and Lance decides this is his favorite thing in the entire world.

***
“How about Kevin?”

Lance scrunches his nose.

“No?”

“No.”

“So picky.”

They’re eating dinner, what Keith called, Chinese take-out, it’s sweet and salty and nothing like Lance’s has ever tasted, so many flavors bursting in his mouth. He decides he likes it.

“Maybe something more exotic?”

“What’s exotic?”

“It means something from far away.”

“Where ever I’m from, it must have been far away. It didn’t have policemen or doctors or dogs. I don’t recognize these things. Do you know such a place? Is it far away?”

Keith gave him a strange look, “Very far away.”

***

“How about Leo?”

“Mmmmm closer.” Lance decides.

“So, something with an L?”

“What’s that?”

Keith takes out what Lance had learned was a book, “It’s a letter.” He draws something on the page and holds it to Lance, “Do you recognize this?”

“No.”

“Wow. Okay.”

“What?”

“Well you speak English but you don’t recognize letters.”

“Is that bad?”

“No. It just means something different than what I thought.”

“What did you think?”

Keith doesn’t answer.

Keith is looking at what he had called a phone. Apparently, it’s like a tv and has lots of information in it. Lance had been watching a lot of tv. It had taught him a lot of things, like the reason why Keith was so embarrassed when he didn’t know how to use the shower and had to ask him for help. It wasn’t so much the shower part as the not wearing clothes part. “How about Leandro? Larry? Lance.”

Something struck Lance to his core. Recognition. “That one. The last one.”

“Lance?” Keith’s eyes met his. Something stirred inside him.

“Yeah. Lance.”

***

There were many days when Keith couldn’t be home. But Lance had the TV and Kosmo and a thing he really loved, a fridge. Other the months Lance learned things about this new world. He learned he loved to sing. That he loved to talk and that Keith would get annoyed if he did this while he was trying to sleep.

He learned that he liked water and clothes and warmth. And that he really, really liked Keith. Other people talked to Lance, but Keith felt the same way his first mug of hot coco tasted.

Keith took him to town and to museums and parks and wonderful places.

He learns that Keith loves running on the beach, especially with Lance chasing behind him. That he loves a challenge, loves noodles in any form, and that he can’t turn down cookies.

Lance often found himself at the beach, looking out at the water, confused and scared but a sense of longing in his chest. He wanted to go into the waves, but something holds him back, like if he touched the water, he would never come back.

Keith said he had something called trauma.

***

“I feel useless to you,” Lance said one night. They were on the couch, Kosmo between them, and Keith was a little frustrated because he had gotten the bills today, which Lance had learned was bad. “All I do is eat your food and sit on your couch. I don’t know who I am. I can’t do anything.”

The anger, the bitten back frustration, melted from Keith’s face, “Lance look at me. You are not useless. You’re annoying. You’re weird. But you are not useless.”

How could warm eyes ground him so easily? Make him feel like he was home? Lance wanted his memories back. He wanted to know who he was. But he was scared. He somehow knew, Keith wouldn’t fit into those memories, that he would lose his warmth forever.

The next day, Keith takes Lance to a cafe that his friend Hunk works at and gets Lance a job. Because as much as Lance knows he’s not useless, he wants to help. Lance likes the job. He talks to people and learns new things and he feels like things are falling into place.

But not everything is smooth and easy. Sometimes Lance wakes up with a pain in his chest, missing something desperately, feeling like something is calling out to him. And as much as he knows that Keith likes him, he also knows he’s an incredible burden.

One night Lance hears talking, the light shining out from under Keith’s door. He listens to the voices. “I can’t tell him Shiro. He’s still going through so much. I can’t put this on him too. It would be weird. I can’t. I know I know,” the sound of Keith’s voice cracking, “I love him. I really love him.”

And because Lance hasn’t learned social cues all the way yet he opens the door, “Keith.”

Keith snaps the phone off and looks up, scared and raw and so vulnerable. “Did you hear that? I’m sorry Lance. I’m sorry.”

But Lance strides forward, arms slipping around Keith. Someone warm, someone he’s found a home in. “I love you too.”

Keith doesn’t have to show Lance what to do next. They fall into each other, melting melting melting, and Lance feels warmth like he’s never felt before.

***

“I’m going to be right there,” Keith says. “I’ll help you. I promise.”

It’s after Keith’s shift. They’re standing by the waves, the night sky stretching above them. Keith in the water up to his ankles trying to coax Lance in.

“I think… you know what maybe tomorrow.”

“You’ve said that all week,” Keith meets his eyes, the eyes Lance can’t say no to. “This is the only thing you remember. Maybe it will help.”

“And if not?”

Keith stretches his arms to Lance, “At least then you’ll get over this. I see you looking at the water. I think you’ll actually like it.”

The night stars are reflected in the calm seas and in Keith’s eyes. Lance runs into the surf. Keith waits for him, waiting for Lance to face him.

But inside Lance, something is opening, flooding him, seeping into all the places Keith had filled for him. It’s overwhelming like the sea, like Keith’s eyes.

“Lance?”

“I remember,” he murmurs.

“What?”

“I remember,” Lance tries to wipes away tears.

“Hey. hey,” Keith’s warm hands find his shoulders. “Hey what’s wrong.”

“I can’t stay here. I don’t belong here.”

“Sure you do.”

Lance looks away. He hears them now. The voices of his family, calling out to him, the sound like wind on the waves.

“I’m sorry,” Lance tugs away. He dashes into the waves.

“LANCE.”

Lance turns back, a small smile. He can’t meet those eyes. The water greets him like an old friend, cold and calm and familiar.

He takes a leap and lets the ocean embrace him.

“LANCE.”

Keith can’t hear him but Lance apologizes again. He was never meant to feel that warmth, not when he’s from salt and foam and cold.

***

He’s with his family. He’s so incredibly happy, to remember to have them back. But that pain in his chest has somehow gotten bigger, the space Keith left him with too wide to fill. His family notices. Of course, they know. Lance wears all his emotions on his face, even the ones he wants to hide.

“You have to go back. That’s where your heart is.” His mother says to him.

“But I’ll miss you.”

“Like we won’t visit,” his sister chimes in.

***

He’s running up the drive to Keith’s house. He had, thank the stars and the seas, had found Keith’s duffle bag in the lifeguard tower and had thrown on the familiar hoodie and sweats.

The house is dark, but he can hear Kosmo barking at the screen door. And suddenly he’s nervous. Memory is a fragile thing after all. What if Keith had forgotten him, what if he didn’t feel the same?

“Kosmo. What is your problem?” a familiar voice barks back. And Lance’s whole heart swoops.

The screen door open, Keith must have been sleeping, his hair is mused, his eyes are dark and sad. But then they fall on Lance, and Lance can feel the fire within, his eyes lighting up like the stars.

“I’m home,” he says before Keith’s warmth surrounds him.

Chapter Text

Klance Au Month
February 4, 2019
Day Four: Hogwarts

*Madam Puddifoot’s*

If you asked Keith privately what he thought of Valentine’s day, he would either shrug or tell you how moronic and overhyped the whole holiday was. But Keith wasn’t stupid. He knew Lance would make a fuss about the holiday, because Lance made a fuss about everything, and would soon be talking his ear off about how romantic it was. And because Keith knew all this and was currently dating Lance, he knew better than to do nothing. Years as rival Gryffindors, then tentative friends, and now in their seventh year, finally, finally dating, Keith knew Lance would start a row if he didn’t bring out the charming boyfriend card.

Which is how Keith had ended up in Madam Puddifoot’s Tea Shop, squashed between tacky décor and snogging teenagers. With frills and ribbons and a gaudy amount of pink, let’s just say, it wasn’t Keith idea of a date. He would rather find somewhere quiet on the grounds to study or cozy up in front of the fire, but in this moment, he could tell Lance was loving every second of it.

He was practically bouncing out of his seat trying to take in every detail.

Keith had reluctantly put on his Christmas jumper that Mrs. McClain had made him, which wasn’t a problem in itself, except for the fact Lance was wearing his own matching jumper, a thing they had promised years ago to never do.

They were not a lovey-dovey couple. They were the guys who started snow ball fights and set off jinxes on each other and, yes occasionally snogged. But now in the tea store in matching sweaters with little matching tea cups, Keith was questioning if in fact they were that kind of disgusting, PDA couple.

Because Keith couldn’t take his eyes off Lance. Lance in his blue sweater that brought out his own starry eyes. Lance who always had to make his hair neat, but was combing through it and messing it up. Lance who was tentatively lacing his fingers with Keith’s own and looking up at him like he was the goddamn saint of Valentine’s himself.

Keith had simply made the reservation because he knew Lance would love this place, he didn’t deserve that soft look that he was now receiving.

Keith crossed his arms self-consciously, watching the other couples do completely embarrassing things that they should not for the love of god be doing in broad daylight, that they should not be doing over food.

Something smacked into Keith’s shin hard, “Ow,” he glared at Lance, “What was that for?”

“I could see you panicking,” Lance shrugged.

“So, you kicked me?”

“Yeah? I don’t like to see you nervous. That’s my job.”

“You only have to be nervous when you set up stupid pranks or do things you know you’re going to get in trouble for.”

“See. Perfectly acceptable things to be nervous for.”

“If you’re going to be nervous about it. Don’t do it in the first place.”

“Says the guy who was right there breaking the rules with me.”

Keith huffed, “Moron.”

“Impulsive brat.”

Lance broke out into a smile, and god yeah, that’s why Keith liked him.

“There’s my normal Keith.”

Keith let out another huff, but yeah, Lance knew how to make him feel better.

A woman in a lacey apron came by and deposited their order. Now Keith liked tea and sweets, probably even more so than Lance, but the lavish, frilly thing in front of him did not look like anything he wanted to eat.

Lance stabbed his fork into Keith’s chocolate cake and took a bite, crumbs spraying the table, “Not bad. Not bad.”

“Hey. Eat your own cake.”

Lance rolled his eyes and took a piece of his own cake, holding the fork out to Keith, “Here you can have a bite of mine.”

“No way. Not doing that.”

“Come on. You made it this far mullet. Now play the part.” Lance raised a brow in challenge, and Keith knew that look too well not to accept.

Keith sighed and leaned in allowing Lance to place the fork in his only slightly parted mouth. The cake was actually really good, and Lance leaning over the table, eyes on him the whole time as the fork slide out of his mouth…maybe these couples were onto something.

They finished their cakes in relative silence after that, Keith too embarrassed to ask for more.

“Okay,” Lance said when he put his fork down, “Now you have to kiss me.”

“Umm What?”

“We have to kiss,” Lance pointed around the room, “It’s literally why people come here, especially on Valentine’s day.”

“Yeah no. Maybe later.”

“Stop being a prude mate. Its what people do. And from what I remember you like snogging me,” Lance said with a smirk.

“Yeah but this is…too much,” Keith said turning his eyes down to his hands. More like he wouldn’t be able to control himself.

“Come on mate. We’ve been dating for a year. And going to Madam Puddifoot’s has a certain connotation. Certain expectations.” Lance pouted, “I want people to be like, ‘Didn’t you see Keith Kogane the Gryffindor Quidditch captain kissing Lance McClain, house perfect, in Madam Puddifoot’s? and ‘Oh yes I did, they are so in love’ I don’t want to hear, ‘oh man, Lance McClain and Keith Kogane where in Madam Puddifoot’s on Valentine’s day and they didn’t kiss at all. I think they’re going to break up.’”

“You care too much about what people think.”

Lance shrugged, “You do too, in your stupid mullet way.”

“Come here then,” Keith said.

Lance rolled his eyes, “You can’t just say come here you have to—”

But by that point Keith cuts Lance off, pressing a kiss firmly to his lips. Lance lets out a little gasp, that does something really stupid to Keith’s brain and something even stupider to his spine and the hair on the back of his neck. But then Lance is kissing back, pulling him in by his scarf before threading his fingers into Keith’s hair.

And Keith is doing what he really didn’t want to do, full on snogging in broad daylight in the middle of this crazy shop, but Lance is licking into his mouth and he can’t stop now.

Eventually they break for air.

Keith looks away, because Lance face and swollen lips, is way, way too much. He slams a gallon on the table, grabs Lance’s hand and pulls them up. “Let’s go.”

He drags Lance through the throng… yep, yep people are definitely staring.

“You’re blushing,” Lance says poking his cheek as they finally get out of that accursed shop.

“I’m not,” Keith says.

Lance chuckles as he squeezes Keith’s hand tighter, pressing into Keith’s side as snow swirling around them, “You totally are mate.”

But Keith just scoffs and leans into Lance’s warmth, trying to compel Lance for once not to drag his feet so they can get out of Hogsmeade and back to the castle.

Chapter Text

Klance AU Month
February 5th, 2019
Day Five: Roommates

*It's Easy (falling in love with you)*

When they’re all finally released from the hospital, the paladins move back into the Garrison barracks. Shiro gets his own room as an officer, but the other Paladins have to pair up. Pidge and Hunk, Allura and Romelle, and Lance and Keith. Because it’s always Lance and Keith.

Keith had been nervous, had been so ready, to shut down, to fight with Lance, to ignore him, something he had been doing ever since he got back. Sleeping near Lance, being that close to him, it was more contact than they had had in a year.

But something happens when Keith gets to the room and unloads his stuff.

Lance looks at him and sighs, like he’s letting down walls, he looks sad and so unlike himself. Keith has never seen so much vulnerability. He realizes what Lance has been doing since he left the team. What he’s been doing since he’s seen his family.

But something bubbles inside his chest, at the way Lance is able to let that perfect shell crack in front of him. And Keith feels himself breaking down, his own facade, his toughness, crumble.

And they hold each other, just hold each other.

And it’s comfort, but it’s not soft, it hurts, it’s tight and uncomfortable with digging nails and hard muscles holding for dear life, but Keith feels relief wash over him.

It starts as quiet talks, soft words meant to comfort a friend. It’s Lance telling Keith about everything he had missed when he was away. It’s Lance telling Keith how he’s given up on Allura and how much that hurt. It’s Lance telling Keith how much he missed him, how much it hurt for Keith to be gone from his life.

It’s Keith telling Lance about his adventures, telling him what he’s be doing, where he came from and who he is now. It’s Keith telling Lance how much it scares him when he sees Lance hurt.

One night they’re sitting on Lance’s bed just talking. Lance’s eyes droop the way they do when he’s sleepy, somehow still lighting up that amazing blue that stirs something in Keith’s chest.

“I like you,” Keith says, “I have for a while.”

Lance looks up, a little surprised. Then he pouts, and nods, like something is coming together.

“Okay,” Lance says and he takes Keith’s hand rubbing circles into the knuckles.

And they lay back in Lance’s bed just holding each other in their arms.

Eventually Keith pulls up, looking down at Lance, his hair creating a curtain, blocking Lance’s face from the rest of the world. And Keith doesn't have to say anything, because Lance knows.

He simply says, “I may flirt around, but I don’t mess around Keith.”

So much between them goes unsaid, they don’t try to define what this is.

And from there, it truly is gentle caresses and soft looks and lips and teeth and hands meeting. It’s the warmth of skin and something new and electric, but something cozy and intimate. It’s everything that Keith had ever wanted.

If they weren’t going so slow, weren’t taking their time the way they were, Keith would be scared of breaking. Because that’s what love feels like, shattering into a million pieces and showing someone everything that lies beneath what’s broken, and creating something new and beautiful from the pieces.

But it’s all ending so quickly, because they are paladins and they have a job to do.

On their last day on Earth Lance finds Keith on top of the black lion.

“I was looking for you, I brought you something,” Lance says.

Keith smirks up at Lance and tugs him down next to him, “What could you have possibly brought me?” It’s playful. The flirt brings a blush to Lance’s cheeks, a look Keith can’t get enough of.

“Here.” The other boy pouts holding out Keith’s long lost jacket, on top, his gloves.

“You kept these?”

Lance looks out to the sunset, “You were worried about Shiro, so I went to your room to make sure, you know, that you didn’t leave anything behind. I thought these were important to you.”

Keith chuckles, “I wonder if the jacket will even fit. Stars. I don't even feel like the same person.”

Lance lets out a small laugh, its sounds like bells. “I don’t think either of us are entirely the same person.”

Keith grabs Lance hand then, holding it to his chest, “I grew up because of you.”

“What do you mean?”

“At first. God, I thought you were just an asshole that had it out for me. But then. You became, well not become, you were always that Lance. Maybe deep, deep, deep, inside but…”

Lance pokes Keith’s cheek, “Get to the point.”

“You became the Lance I relied on. A Paladin. The Lance who’s always got my back. The Lance who knows exactly who he is and what he has to offer. The Lance I fell in love with. And that love changed me into a better person, a better leader.”

Lance’s face lights up, the sunlight warming him, he seems to glow, “Look at you mullet. Look at how amazing you are. I can’t even begin to imagine a life without you.”

Keith leans into Lance’s warmth, closer to those amazing eyes. Keith presses a soft kiss to Lance. “Then don’t.”

Lance smiles. Soft lips meet Keith’s slightly chapped ones. And they fit together in a way that Keith knows that, yes, this is right, everything is going to work out.

Lance pulls back, lips red, lashes casting shadows over his face, “I love you Keith.” Pink flushes his face, like he’s catching on to what he just said. He tucks his head into Keith’s neck, “I really, really love you,” he mumbles.

***

That night Keith tries not to sleep. He rests his head on Lance’s chest, listening to his soft breath, looking at Lance’s face, covered in a facemask, but somehow so peaceful. Keith tries to savor it, their last peaceful moment, before they’re thrown back into space, back into a universe that wants to tear them apart. But eventually Lance’s breathing lulls him to sleep and he lets himself find peace. Waiting for the new day, waiting for the sunrise. A day that’s already amazing because Lance loves Keith. And Keith can’t help but love this stupid, loud, obnoxious, caring, selfless boy back.

Chapter Text

Klance Au Month
February 6, 2019
Day six: supernatural

*The Break of Day*

Lance McClain sticks his head out the car window trying to absorb as much sunlight as he can before he gets on the plane that will take him to one of the gloomiest towns in America. After getting in trouble one too many times, Lance’s mom is finally shipping him off to his older brother Luis and his family in Forks Washington. It’s sophomore year of high school and he’ll have to make new friends in a boring town that barely sees the sun.

The only problem is that something strange happens when Lance’s family is in Forks. It happens in Cuba too, but Lance hasn’t been there since he was seven. When the McClain’s are in the sacred lands they turns into werewolves. And now, just in the beginning of puberty, Lance has a pretty good chance of turning into a werewolf himself.

But Lance wasn’t going to live on the reservation so he was hoping to avoid this, and to avoid his even weirder cousins and relatives.

His mom drops him off at the airport, giving him a stink-eye, reminding him to mind his manners, and not to get into trouble before hugging him and almost breaking down.

“I’ll miss you mama.”

He leans down so that she can hold his face in her warm hands, “Just. Be good. I think this will be good for you.” She has tears in her eyes.

Lance smiles and steps back to get in the TSA line, “I promise.”

And Lance will miss her. He’ll miss her hugs and her garlic knots, and the way she makes him always feel better. But he also knows that he made his own bed when he had set the water balloons off on Principal Iverson, so now he’s paying the price for that.

His brother and sister-in-law pick up Lance from the airport. Luis is excited to see Lance but Lance thinks he’s even more excited at the prospect of a built-in babysitter. Lance notices that it’s grey and misting without any signs of letting up.

Saying Lance doesn’t have high expectations for this move would be an understatement. He’s leaving everything behind, starting school in the middle of the semester, even leaving the sun, but it’s a fresh start, and Lance does like the sound of that.

When they get to the house, two kids spill out, ready to greet Lance. A man in a wheelchair that Lance recognizes as Billy from the reservation comes out to greet him too.

“Good to see you again sir,” Lance says shaking the man's hand, the two kids clutching at his legs.

“It’s good to see you son. I’m hoping you’ll join our pack. We got a lot of nice boys your age.”

Luis puts a hand on Lances shoulder, “Lance has never transformed Billy. We don’t even know if he will transform.”

“I guess you’re right. But stop by anytime. And let me know how the truck works out.”

Lance looks to a beat up red pickup in the driveway. “No way. Is this for me?”

“You need a way to get to school,” Luis days with a smile.

Lance hugs him and runs over to the truck.

“Do you like it?”

“Are you kidding? I love it! It’s even my favorite color.”

The adults chuckle as Lance lovingly strokes the side of the rusty vehicle.

***
Lance settles into his new home fairly nicely. He gets his own room, which is a great change from having to smell Marcos feet, but Lance wouldn’t say he gets that much privacy, not with Sylvio and Nadia coming in to bug him every five minutes. But Lance somehow loves it.

The first day of school however? Not so much. Everyone just stares at him. Like he’s some celebrity that they can’t talk to. Lance likes the attention but now he doesn’t know how to approach anyone.

After his first class he turns to the boy next to him, a warm big guy who seems nice enough...ugh do you know where room 217 is?

The guy turns to him, “Mr. Turners class right? I have that next too!” So the two of them walk to class.

“I’m Lance.”

The boy laughs, “I know. You’re all anyone is talking about.”

“Then there isn’t much going on in this town.”

“There really isn’t. I’m Hunk by the way.”

“Cool.”

Lance let’s Hunk escort him the rest of the morning and finds they have a lot in common as far as video games.

At lunch, Hunk takes Lance to his table to meet his friends Pidge and Romelle.

They get into talking about Lance and why he moved.

Pidge gains some minor respect towards Lance when they learn about his prank history.

“Why didn’t you go to school on the reservation?”

“I mean I know them and stuff but I would not call us friends. I’m only a fourth native American and like, I didn’t grow up there. I don’t know the culture and stuff. I don’t feel like I should impose on them you know?”

They were nice enough. Stressing the enough part. Lance wondered if the reservation kids would be nicer if he turned.

“Hey I’m just glad not to be the only one anymore. It’s hard being the only black kid up here.” Hunk said.

“Lol I’ll do what I can,” Lance smirked. It was true that he was going to be one of the few minorities up here.

Pidge looked around at the room of staring faces, all staring at Lance, “Your like a shiny new toy to them,” they said with disgust.

Lance smirked, “And you know, I’m going to milk that for all it’s worth.”

Suddenly the doors opened, almost like a magnet every face was pulled to the new comers. The most beautiful girl Lance had ever seen walked in, with long white hair and beautiful blue eyes that contrasted her dark skin. Another boy, well he didn’t look like any high school boy Lance had ever seen, had his arm wrapped around her shoulder. He also sported a mane of white hair.

“Who’s that,” Lance asked.

Another boy came strutting in after them. He was tall with white skin, hard features, and dark unruly hair.

Lance felt his breath leave him, “Woah who’s that.”

Hunk patted him on the back, “Don’t even think about it bro they’re nothing but trouble.”

The three students sat at a lunch table looking bored and just way too cool for school. Lance didn’t know to feel annoyed or in awe.

“Why?”

Romelle spoke up, a gossipy tone ready, “That’s the Koganes. They are super weird. Keep to themselves. All adopted by this big hot-shot doctor and his husband. They are like super rich and think they’re too cool for us.”

Pidge jumped in, “The white hair kids. That’s Allura and Lotor. They’re like together, together. It’s creepy. And the younger one, Keith, couldn’t give two shits about anybody else. Thinks he’s too cool for us.”

Lance nodded his head solemnly. So don’t get involved the message was. Lance didn’t know why but something was really throwing him off with these three, telling him they were dangerous. Lance wondered why, the three were weird, sure, but not dangerous.

***
Lance walked to his next class, science, normally his favorite subject. But as soon as Lance walked in he knew it was going to be bad. Because there was Keith Kogane with the only available lab stool right next to him.

Lance sat down and Keith’s body went rigid next to him. He flicked his eyes at Lance, cold and hard, unreadable. Keith covered his nose and mouth with one hand.

Did he smell? Lance tentatively sniffed near his armpit, nope still smelled like his spicy mint deodorant. If anything Keith smelled weird, unsettling somehow.

The teacher explained the project for the day and Lance pushed the microscope at Keith hoping the politeness would somehow ease the tension that was obviously happening between them.

Keith glared at Lance as his hand crossed into his side of the table. Keith’s hand never left his nose. He really looked like he found Lance utterly disgusting.

Eventually Lance couldn’t take it, “I’m sorry. Is something wrong?”

“You smell like a wet dog,” Keith said nonchalantly.

“Well you must be smelling your own stinky mullet. Seriously, ever heard of a hair care routine? For that matter ever heard of a haircut?”

The two continued to bicker until the teacher gave them a look.

“Look I don’t know what I did, but you obviously don’t like me, so you stay on your side of the table and I’ll stay at mine,” Lance said.

The bell rang and Keith’s sprang up to get away from Lance.

“Have a nice life,” Lance shouted after him.

***

That night something strange happened. Lance woke up, his whole body on fire it seemed. Lance got the panicky sense of being trapped.

He ran outside, the moonlight cooling his skin. And suddenly he wasn’t Lance anymore. He was a big, burley oversized brown wolf.

Lance panicked in the forest, waiting to turn back. When he finally did calm down enough to turn to himself, he ran up stairs to shower and get clean, deciding never to tell anyone what had happen.

Life was normal after that. He hung out with Pidge and Hunk, he settled into his normal life. He sometimes changed into a giant wolf. Keith Kogane was still an attractive jerk, that okay, could sometimes be nice. Like the time he carried Lance to the nurse’s office.

Lance had always been squeamish around blood, but he didn’t realize how bad it was till he was looking at a blood sample under a microscope and found his head feeling fuzzy.

But Keith was somehow there, catching Lance, telling the teacher he was taking him to the nurse.

Once outside, Keith simply scooped Lance up bridal style. His skin was cold and hard to the touch. It almost felt like relief against his own burning skin, a symptom of his new found state.

“You know I would rather you put me down,” Lance said.

“And I would rather you didn’t faint on me but here we are,” Keith said. And that was that.

***

Everything changed after the car crash.

If Lance was being honest with himself he was excited to get to school that morning. Because he knew he would see Keith Kogane. And that was very very stupid. Lance knew he should avoid him, heck, they didn’t even like each other, but here he was getting excited because they had had some weird bonding moment where Keith had cradled him in his arms.

Luis told him to watch for ice, and Lance told him not to worry. But as Lance got into his truck to make his way to school, he was suddenly very nervous. He had never really driven in anything but perfect sunny weather and it took all his focus not to land in a snowbank.

Once at school, Lance got out of his truck and started collecting his stuff, realizing that at his slow pace this morning, he was now on the verge of being late.

Then there was the screech of tires, fast and loud. Lance felt an airpod pop out of his ear as he looked up.

Several things happened simultaneously. Too many details at once. One moment Keith Kogane was several cars down from Lance, in front of his expensive motorcycle, with a look of sheer panic on his face. But what Lance was more concerned with was the fact that a dark blue van was currently skidding towards him.

The skidding van was going to ram into his truck and then it was going to ram into him, making a nice Lance-car oreo sandwich.

Lance closed his eyes for the impact.

Just before the penultimate crash, something rammed into Lance hard from the other direction. His head smacked on the blacktop. Something solid and cold was pinning Lance to the ground, but not next to his truck, no, he was now several cars away.

But the van, which had clipped Lance’s car was still coming at them.

Lance heard someone say “fuck” the voice impossible not to recognize, and a long white hand shot out protectively in front of him, smacking into the van, which at last shuddered to a stop in front of Lance’s nose.

The same hands, blurring almost too fast to see, dragged Lance up and pulled them out from between the two cars, two cars that should have hit one another. There was broken glass and screaming and yelling, but all Lance could hear among the cacophony was Keith Kogane calling Lance’s name, “Hey McClain you all right?”

“M’fine,” Lance said, his eyes meeting Keith’s impossibly dark ones. Lance tried to pull away, but realized he really wasn’t all right, and had to grip to Keith’s chest trying to find solid ground again.

Several minutes later an ambulance came and took them away. The doctor, a handsome Japanese man that couldn’t be older than twenty-seven, Keith’s adoptive father (or was it brother), told Lance he was good to go after his inspection.

Lance tried to explain to him that Keith had been hurt too, that he had jumped in front of the car, by Doctor Takashi Shirogane waived that away, a hallucination from the adrenaline.

But Lance knew what he saw. Keith wasn’t human. It wasn’t possible. What he had done.

And that’s when he knew that Keith Kogane was something like him. And Lance was going to find out what.

Chapter Text

Klance Au Month
February 7, 2018
Day Seven: Internet Friends

*Hey Beautiful*

Lance has known Keith for almost five years, but he’s never met him in person.

Sure they skype and snapchat and talk constantly, it’s not like Keith is somehow less, somehow not his best friend, but Lance knows everything will be different after this weekend, after he mets Keith for the first time.

It all started when Lance was in high school. He had been obsessed with this mecha-anime and naturally went on Tumblr to find like minded people. Instead he found Keith Kogane aka knives_and_wolves who had absolutely no interest in anime, but the two somehow became fast friends, eventually exchanging contact information and starting an online D and D group with all of Lance’s friends.

Now, for his first college spring break, Keith would be flying out from Texas for the weekend to visit. Lance had just parked at the airport and was currently waiting near the baggage claim for Keith to come out.

Now Lance had seen Keith before, he’d received photos and they’d done video chats. Lance knew what Keith looked like. Keith had always said he wasn’t photogenic, not that looks really mattered to Lance because despite the mullet and plain fashion taste he still had a tini-tiny crush on his best friend, but Lance didn’t realize how different he would look in person.

A tall man with long dark hair, a solid chest, and painfully striking dark eyes walked up to Lance tentatively.

“Keith?” Lance said. Because it was Keith. He knew that face, and yet...holy crap Keith wasn’t kidding, he was not photogenic, because the guy standing in front of him now was super model gorgeous.

Keith smiled at him shyly, “Didn’t recognize me huh?” The familiar gruff voice said, “You look exactly how you do online, which, I mean, is good. You look good,” Keith stuttered.

Lance was stunned for another moment before hesitantly reaching out to give Keith a hug. It was a little awkward, the two not knowing where to put hands or how hard to squeeze. Okay, we’ll work on that Lance thought to himself.

Keith wasn’t any taller than him, but he somehow felt bigger. He just had a presence that wasn’t there behind a camera. Lance tried not to feel intimidated, because this was Keith, literally the least intimidating person he had ever known.

Like the gentleman he was, Lance took Keith’s bag, “Car’s parked over here,” he said leading Keith out of the airport.

On the way he sent a quick text to Hunk,

Lance to Hunk: Holy crap, hunk hunk hunk. I’m dying. Keith. Is. Beautiful. Breathtaking. I can’t breath. I’m having a disaster moment. He’s like. The most gorgeous person. I have ever seen? And my heart can’t take it. ANd I don’t know what to do. And I’m freaking out.

Hunk to Lance: Stop freaking out. Calm down. Remember this is just keith.

Lance to Hunk: That makes it worse!!!!!!! I mean I already suspected I liked him. What do I do now?

 

Hunk to Lance: Feel it out and confess when it’s right???

Lance to Hunk: dlkfjdfjadsoiguioeioljjciafsdf

 

The two got in the car and Lance started driving. Lance was currently attending a state school, hoping to transfer in a year, so he still lived at home. Which really wasn’t that bad because he got to be with his family. He also lived near the beach in a sleepy California town that he absolutely adored.

“So you must be tired right? Do you want a nap or…”

“I mean, I slept on the plane, but maybe we can just chill tonight so we won’t be to tired tomorrow.”

Lance had all the plans arranged for the week. Tomorrow would be a beach day and Lance would show Keith around main street. Then the next day they would go up to Hollywood and see the planetarium. Keith wasn’t really a big tourist kind of guy, so they were skipping all the tourist/Hollywood stuff. So the rest of the week would just be regular hanging out, watching movies, that kind of thing.

When they got to the house, luckily only Lance’s mom was home, so there wasn’t a big scene. But she was already bustling around Keith welcoming him into the family, asking if he was hungry.

“Mom, jeez lay off the poor guy. We’re going to go watch a movie.”

“I’ll bring up some fruit.”

“Thank you Mrs. McClain.”

“No. No. Call me Rosa.”

Lance rolled his eyes as Keith was pulled into another tight hug then he took Keith to his room.

“We have a full house, it being spring break and all, so you’ll have to share my room if that’s okay.”

“That’s fine,” Keith said spreading out on the already inflated air mattress. He was looking up at Lance with a strange look in his eye.

“What?” Lance said cross his arms.

“Nothing. It’s just weird. Seeing you in person, seeing your room and everything. How you fit into that,” Keith poked at a stuffed shark on Lance’s bed, “It’s all very you,” he gestured to the room.

“Pidge says it’s like my mind threw up in one spot,” Lance chuckled looking at a string of photos over his desk.

“Exactly,” Keith said.

Lance plopped on his bed and turned on the small tv over his bed, “So is there anything on netflix you wanna watch?”

“You can pick.” He got out his phone, “I just gotta text my mom really quick. Let her know I made it.”

“She still kinda hover over you?”

“Not as bad, but yeah. She still gets worried. I can’t blame her, not after what happened to my dad.”

“Yeah,” Lance knew Keith’s dad had died in an accident a few years back. It had been hard on him, but he had healed in time. Still missed him of course. His mom was one of the reasons he even stayed in Texas for college at all.

“Shit. She’s calling. I’m just gonna take this,” Keith said walking to the door of Lance’s bathroom. It was one of those jack and jill types that he shared with Rachel. And oh boy was that a hunger games situation in itself every morning.

Lance tried to calm himself and just get something started on Netflix. He scrolled through his list looking for something that was appropriate and wouldn't end up in awkwardness. Lance felt a small secretive smile hit his face.

Keith came in just as the theme music began playing. “Get that weeb shit off the tv,” Keith said pouncing for the remote.

“Come on Keith!” Lance said rolling away, an expert in keeping the remote away from his siblings, “Ouran High School is a fucking classic.”

“I don’t want to watch it.”

Lance curled into a ball as Keith continued to try and wrestle him. “Just try it.”

Keith tried to tickle Lance but it had no effect. Unable to get the remote out of his hand, Keith finally gave up slumping against the pillows. “Fine.” he let out in a huff.

Lance sat up happily turned the show back to the beginning, and stuffed the remote under his butt so that Keith couldn’t make a grab for it.

Keith gave a sigh, but settled into Lance’s side to watch the show.

Okay, Lance thought. This isn’t so bad. Everything's normal.

And it was more normal, the physical contact had broken the weird hesitancy in him. But it didn’t stop the weird electricity that Lance felt between them or the way his heart may have been beating a little faster than normal.

But soon Keith was asking dumb questions and they were falling back into their usual pattern of bickering.

***

The next day they went to the tide pools, one of Lance’s favorite things to do. He tried to keep his heart in check as Keith poured over the rocky pools, poking things, his eyes lighting up like a little kid. Lance took Keith down mainstreet, pointing out the cute shops. They got ice cream, bickering over what flavor was better, Lance with dulce de leche and cookie dough, Keith with just chocolate and vanilla.

“You are so boring Keith.”

“I really am.”

Lance hip checked Keith, “No you aren’t.”

“You just said I was,”

Lance looked away, trying to hide the blush creeping over his face, “You’re not. You really aren’t Keith.”

Keith poked his cheek, “You are so weird McClain.”

“I really am.”

The two smiled and laughed.

From there, the week seemed to sprint by. Lance already felt like he knew Keith’s brain inside and out but it was another thing to experience it in person, to see the little things. How Keith got up early, but was always really grumpy, how he really didn’t wake up until you waved coffee in front of him. How he took about no time to get ready but somehow still managed to look really really good. How he would grumble when Lance took his time, because Lance was slow, slow to walk, slow to eat, slow to get ready for the day and for bed, but in reality, Keith didn’t care and he would wait for Lance to catch up, watch Lance as he got ready. He would get impatient with everything else but never with Lance.

He learned Keith always doodled on napkins, always kept a pen and a swiss army knife on him. That he didn’t care about music, but he liked when Lance sung to the radio, evident by his small smile. He learned that Keith liked going fast and couldn’t keep still for long, always tapping a foot. He learned that Keith fit in with his family. That he would be awkward and shy with people he didn’t know, but he genuinely just wanted to get along with everyone.

As the week slowly came to an end, Lance’s heart never calmed down. Because Keith really was his best friend, the one that was always there for him the one that was now conveniently really really attractive. But he was the person Lance had fallen in love with before he had ever even seen his face.

And Lance didn’t want to go back to just long phone calls. He didn’t want Keith to leave. He didn’t want to go back to just being interet friends. Lance knew that was stupid, that internet or in person didn’t make a difference, that he probably knew Keith better than anyone because of the internet, and yet still, seeing Keith leaving was going to feel like a kick to the balls or the cracking of his heart.

***

It was their last day. Lance had coaxed Keith down to the beach so he could get some pictures of them and watch the sunset over the water.

They were now sitting in the sand, Keith chuckling as he swiped through the photos. Lance figured this was as good a time as any.

“Keith I like you.”

He didn’t look up. “I know.”

Lance made an exacerbated noise. “I mean like you like you.”

Keith laughed, “I know.”

Lance felt himself squeak, “What? How could you know?”

Keith’s eyes lit up mischievously like he was laughing at something, “Lance you drunk called me last week when you were at that party and confessed.”

Lance felt all his breath escape him, “Shit.”

Keith pocketed his phone and took Lance’s hand, he weaved their fingers together. “I like you too Lance.”

“Oh thank god,” Lance said. He leaned forward touching his forehead to Keith’s. He knew Keith could be weird about touch. That he needed time to adjust. He was content, just staring Keith in the eyes.

Apparently Keith wasn’t though. He leaned forward, closing the distance between their lips, pulling away just as quick. Lance felt his whole face heat up and plopped on Keith’s shoulder to hide his embarrassment. He was used to being the smooth talker, and Lance was learning quickly that he couldn’t take what he dished out.

“Go easy on me Kogane.”

Lucky Keith just chuckled, pulling Lance to him.

“Ah man,” Lance said pulling away, “Now I really don’t want you to leave.”

Keith bit his lip, “I know it’s a lot to ask, but are you still thinking of going to school in Texas, to that Marine Biology program?”

“I mean. That’s the dream Keith. But it's such a hard program, even to transfer to.”

“Well then let’s study hard and promise to meet there next year.”

Lance looked at Keith, “You mean it?”

“Yes you moron,” Keith said.

This time Lance leaned in, gently slotting his lips to Keith, pulling him closer, “Did you know you are really gorgeous and amazing and awsome,” Lance breathed against his lips.

“I figured. I kind of saw you texting Hunk.”

“Aw man. I really am dumb.”

“No you aren’t. You are just not good at being discrete.”

The two laughed, leaning into each other, knowing that this wasn’t the end, but the beginning, the future.

Chapter Text

Klance AU Month

February 8, 2019

Day Eight: Garrison

*Love, Lance (filling in the details of you)*

Keith felt somewhat detached as he packed his things and got ready to leave the Castle of Lions. He hadn’t lived here in a year, and it wasn’t like he had much in his room to begin with. They had a limited amount of time to get everyone as far away from the ship as possible before it turned into a bomb and hopefully saved all realities.

Keith began making the rounds to make sure no one was lingering.

Lance’s door was open. He had his back facing Keith, but Keith could tell he was just staring lost in thought.

He knocked on the side of the wall. Lance jumped.

“You almost ready there Lance.”

“Yeah,” Lance said turning.

Keith tentatively walked in his room, “Wow, it’s surprisingly clean in here.” There was the dismantle video game in the middle of the room, Pidge having already taken what she needed, and the rest of the room was surprisingly bare.

“There’s a lot you don’t know about me,” Lance said, it wasn’t angry, more frustrated and a little sad sounding. He pushed past Keith, “I gotta get Kaltenecker.”

Keith let Lance push past him. Yeah, every since he had come back it had been weird between them. Some unexplainable tension. But Keith couldn’t think about it. There was just too much to do right now, Lance would have to come later.

Keith was about to turn out of the room when something caught his eye. Lance forgot his pillow. And if Keith knew Lance, he would complain about it later. He went to grab the pillow. But there, tucked just out of sight, squished between the wall and the bed, was something else.

Keith pulled it out. It was a diary, or a journal or something. The texture of the cover was foreign feeling, which meant Lance had bought this at some point on their journey. Keith knew this was probably personal, but he also knew Lance would probably regret not having this later. So he tucked the diary and the pillow under his arm and walked back to the black lion.

***

After some mishap adventures, it was finally just them, the lions, and open space.

And that’s when Keith remembered the diary. He knew better than to look in it, but he couldn’t find a good moment to give it to Lance. Sure, giving the pillow had been easy, but that was a whole different thing. How did he tell Lance, who Keith was finding out was a lot more secretive than he had ever believed, “hey I snooped in your room and found you hidden diary. Do you want it?” No. That was a bad idea. Especially the way the two had been snapping at each other.

Keith untucked the journal from his hiding place one night, intent on either hiding it where nobody would find it or completely chucking it out into space. But something slipped out of the binding.

It was a couple sheets of folded paper, like it had been torn out of the book. Keith had every intention of shoving the paper back into the journal, but somehow he found himself opening it instead. Just to figure out what it was, he reasoned. He wasn't going to read it. No he really wasn’t.

But then he saw his name written at the top of the page.

 

Dear Keith, Since you’re never going to read this, I’ve decided to finally collect my stupid, messy thoughts and get all this down.

 

Oh man he really shouldn’t be reading this.

 

It hurts so much with you gone, but I figured, hey, maybe if I write it all out, I can compartmentalize everything I’m feeling (it’s actually a secret talent of mine), and then I can finally stop thinking about you. So yeah, this is the story of how I fell in love with you. Yeah,

 

Keith was not going to stop reading this.

 

It starts in an unlikely place. Since you don’t remember me at all, I’ll tell you about it. My crush started at the Galaxy Garrison. I was twelve. I had just gotten my acceptance letter. I was nervous. I was leaving my family. And I was also studying under probation for the first year, which basically meant I had to get good grades or I would get kicked out. Yeah, even with all the studying I did back then, it was only Veronica, as the new rising star of the Garrison, that even got me close to a chance at being a pilot.

But anyway, I was nervous, walking down the hall to my new dorm room on the first day, and as I turned the corner, there was my hero Takashi Shirogane. I almost crapped my pants right then and there. I know Shiro as a dork now, but then, man, I really looked up to him. He was the one that came to my school, encouraged me to join the Garrison.

And there, standing next to Shiro, was you. You weren’t in your Garrison uniform yet, instead a red hoodie and jeans. And Shiro said something funny, and you turned toward me, didn’t even look at me, didn’t even notice me, but you had the stupidest grin on your face, and it knocked my confused, little twelve-year-old heart right out of my chest.

Now, let me set the record straight. It wasn’t love at first sight. If anything, I was much more interested in Shiro. And why Shiro was talking to some small grumpy kid. But I also knew in that moment, with your long stupid hair and your beat up clothes, that you were somehow one of the most beautiful persons I had ever seen.

Looking back, I don’t think you remember me because I looked so different. I didn’t have a growth spurt until I was fifteen, and by that time I was already sorted into the cargo pilot class. But we spent two years together before that. And I spent five years watching you until you got kicked out.

But yeah. Two years. At first I didn't know what to think about you. You kept to yourself, flying through the simulations with ease. But you were bored. It didn’t look like you wanted to be there. And for someone who tried so hard to get better, man, I spent so many hours practicing, but yeah it hurt to see someone so naturally good at everything. But if I’m being honest, I also thought you were cool.

But that’s how I started picking fights with you. Other kids were doing it too. You just ignored them however. I don’t know why, maybe it was because I was small and not at all intimidating, but you would bicker back with me. If I was pushing to get to the front of a line, you were right there with me. And that time you purposely knocked into my jet, ugh, I still kind of feel bitter about that.

But for whatever reason, Iverson had it out for both of us, noticed our bickering, and pulled us apart. So yeah, I guess there wasn’t much interaction. But I was just so sure that you hated me as much as I hated you. That you saw me as competition, that we were on the same level. So everything in my mind was you. And how I could get to you.

But like I said, other people were bullying you and fighting with you. Probably why you don’t remember me, (I wasn’t really memorable back then anyway). But soon the whole class was ganging up on you. You wouldn't listen. You always did what you wanted, even now I guess. I remember I tried to come after you a few times, talk some sense in you, get you to just do what you were supposed to, but you were always out of my reach. You just didn’t care what a little kid from Cuba had to say.

Then you punched James. I think I fell in love with you a little more after that. I hated that kid. Plus you were defending my hero. But that was one of the last times I tried to talk with you outright. You didn’t even stop when I called your name. Didn’t even look.

Now I was the hero of the cargo class. I was the best flyer by far, and I was always just getting out of trouble with Iverson. People looked up to me, and I got greedy for that attention. And you were off being all amazing. And then the girl I liked, Jenny, she asked you out and you said no. And I was so mad and confused. So I started talking shit about you. How I was better than you, how I would soon be out-flying you in pilot class. Mind you, I already had the whole fake rivalry thing stuck in my head by that point, but now other people had to hear about it. Oh man, I wonder if people knew about my crush, I’m pretty sure at some point people were rolling their eyes saying “we get it Lance. You don’t like him or his hair.”

When we met again you remembered I was a cargo pilot. I’m guessing the only reason you know that is because you heard about some kid who was making a fuss about you.

Then the kerberos mission happened. That was devastating for me. Not to the extent you felt, I’m sure, but. It wasn’t easy. The hard part was I saw you struggling every day. Adam, Commander Wright, was trying to be there for you, but he was dealing with his own sadness and guilt. And you just pushed him away. I saw the day he finally gave up on you. You were standing at the memorial, you had flowers, weeds really, and Adam tried to talk to you, but you just looked him in the eye and said you weren’t giving up. That Shiro was out there.

You were different after that. You pulled away, talking to people even less. You were easier to start a fight with. One time I was just so frustrated and angry at something stupid I actually came up to you, I don’t think you even remembered me at that point, but a couple heated words and we were going at it. Yeah, I was stupid back then. I’m sorry for that one. But man, you have a killer hook, knocked my back tooth out! But yeah, the fighting got worse, and one day I hear your throwing punches at Iverson and that was the last straw.

Even when you dropped out I couldn’t get away from you. I got your spot did you know that? They moved me up to your spot. I got your dorm bed and your locker and your chair in class. It was weird, following the places you were, the trails of you. I looked for remnants, signs you had been there, but you weren't one to leave traces. I tried to forget you, but that wasn’t happening. Iverson was always down my throat, using you as an example. Telling me not only would I never be as good as you, but that you were the only reason I had ever made it out of cargo class.

But then, just as I was finally forgetting you, I was following in your footsteps yet again. I looked through those binoculars and saw you. The image was grainy and you were far away, but I knew it was you. And I found myself chasing after you.

You know the story from there, or at least parts of it.

But I’ll say this. I remember the bonding moment. That was the first time I really looked back, at our past, at what I had been through at the Garrison and realized, man, I thought way too much about you for it to really be a rivalry thing. But your eyes were so pretty that day, and we were finally getting along, and I just didn’t even know how to register what was going on in my head.

I thought I was mixing up friend feelings and romantic feelings. I thought I was just confused. I had never been in love with a boy before. I didn’t know what was happening. So I over compensated. I pursued every female looking alien I could. Oh man, I remember this one time the alien I went after turned out to be male, and then another time genderless, because you know, not all aliens follow our stupid gender rules, and that had me so confused.

But I couldn’t think of you like that. I was your friend. You were probably my best friend at that point, when you became the leader. And you needed me. Needed my support. God Keith, it felt so good to be needed, to find a place at your side. I wonder if you thought that too. How, when we were together, everything was just right. I got greedy. I thought I was the person you confide in, the person that knew the most about you. But just when I think I’ve puzzled out the great enigma that is Keith Kogane, you surprised me again.

You left. And I didn’t know what to think. I was so confused all over again.

It hurt like hell Keith. I missed you so much. And in that moment I knew how I felt. How I truly felt. But you were gone. And I didn’t like feeling all that hurt. I’m the fun guy. I’m not supposed to be sad. I’m supposed to lift the team up. So I threw myself at Allura. It was a good distraction.

But then Lotor happened. And that was another can of worms. I won’t admit that I didn’t have feelings for Allura. I did. But that crush was nowhere near what I feel for you. Felt? No I still feel this way. But yeah Lotor happened. And I realized Allura ane me was never going to work out. That we were better off as friends. I was still jealous, because I had nothing else to do, but yeah, I gave up on her after that.

By then I was isolating myself from the team. Everyone found me annoying. It felt like everyone was pairing up, and I didn’t have my match. I spend a lot of time training after that. Did you know I unlocked a sword Keith? Always following after you I guess.

Then you came back. And my heart. It stopped. And I was just so happy? God I didn’t know what to think. I thought I was over you. I wasn’t in the best place by that point, but for the first time I was actually happy. But you acted like you didn’t care. And I thought we were back to square one again.

But you were always like that. About the mission. About our duty as paladins. I shouldn’t hold that against you. I should know better.

So yeah. Here we are now. I’m distancing myself this time. Because it hurt with Allura and it hurts with you. And if I somehow lose what little I have with you again, god. I don’t want to think about that.

I lost my family, my dreams, I’ve lost you. I can’t lose you again.

So yeah, I hope this turns into the story of how I stopped loving you.

Sorry that was dramatic.

But anyway, y eah,

Love, Lance

 

Keith stared at the letter. Just stared at it.

All this time. He thought. Lance hated him. That he was just getting along to get along. Sure towards the end he thought there was something deeper, but Keith had never suspected that Lance would share his feelings, that his feeling were greater.

Keith crept to his bed, which Kosmo was currently hogging. “Take me to Lance,” he whispered. The dog gave him a look then teleported them with a loud pop.

And there was Lance, sleeping soundly, starfished across his bed. Keith reached out and put a hand over his mouth. Lance’s eyes snapped open, he tried to scream.

“Hey, shut up, idiot it’s me,” Keith said.

Lance calmed down and pushed Keith’s hand away, “Jeez. There are better ways to wake someone up mullet.”

Keith eyed Romelle, sleeping on the other side of the lion, “Just come with me.”

Kosmo hopped into Lance’s now empty bed and curled up. The two made their way into the cockpit of the ship.

“What’s going on?” Lance said.

He was still dressed in his pajamas and Keith was starting to regret running over here as fast as he could with no plan whatsoever.

Keith didn’t know what to say. He held out his hand showing the now slightly crumpled letter.

Lance’s eyes widened. He just stared and stared and, “Just forget what I wrote. Okay. Just. I…” his eyes started darting around the room, “I drank a whole bottle of nunvil when I wrote that.”

“Is what you wrote not true.”

Lance looked down, toeing the ground with his bare foot, “No.”

“Then we need to talk about this.”

“I get it. Clear the air. Keep the team together and all that.”

“What...I--”

“It’s fine. I get it Keith. We don’t have to make this weird. I already gave up okay?”

A pause.

“But I don’t want you to.”

And then those blue eyes were snapping to him. “

You...what?”

Now it was Keith’s turn to feel uncomfortable, “I don’t want you to give up.”

Guarded eyes, “You want me to just pine after you, jeez Keith…”

“What no, I. Come here,” Keith reached forward pulling Lance against his armored chest, “I like you too you doofus.”

Those entrancing blue eyes were looking up at him, so unsure, so scared, so vulnerable, so Lance. Lance edged closer, into Keith’s space.

And suddenly Keith was met with softness. And why why why had they been so stupid up till now. Why did they avoid this when it felt so good. Keith pulled back, gently brushing at Lance’s messy bed head.

“So?” Lance said against his chest, “You read the whole thing? Or like?”

“Yeah, I read it. Sorry.”

Lance tucked his head into Keith’s neck. Keith brough his hands from that strong back to Lance’s waist pulling him closer.

“Please let’s not talk about it for awhile,” Lance mumbled, “I think I’m going to be embarrassed for approximately the next ten years.”

“I mean, don’t be. I’m right there with you.”

“Yeah?”

“Totally.”

And they stayed like that for sometime wrapped in each others arms, the stars their only light. But, for once, space didn’t feel so lonely.

Chapter Text

Klance Au Month
February 9, 2019
Day Nine: Movie of Choice

*Lance Cannot Do Horror*

It was supposed to be a causal hang out. Today was by no means supposed to be a date. Especially since Keith and Lance weren’t technically anywhere close to going out. But as Lance turned up at his door that evening with a bag of popcorn and snacks, all Keith could think was, this is a date, this is a date right? This has to be a date.

They had just finished their finals last week and to celebrate the whole gang was getting together for a movie night. But then it had turned into just Lance and Keith. First Shiro had gotten asked out by his crush, which turned to him bailing. Then Hunk and Pidge had robotics club, which wasn’t suspicious, annoying, but not suspicious. What was suspicious was both Romelle and Allura mysterious catching a cold that morning. Then Keith knew it was a set up.

Keith texted Lance to call the night off, since nobody was bothering to show up, but Lance had just texted back saying it was fine and if it was okay, he would come over to hang out.

This was going to be one of their first alone hang-out sessions, at least in a while, which left Keith’s mind spirally to how cute Lance was when he smiled, and the fact that he was coming over alone, (alone, alone, alone) to hang out just with Keith. And that got Keith to thinking about the one time he had seen Lance at the pool and that he had cute little dimples in the small of his back. And yeah, Keith mind was about to explode.

Lance waited for Keith to open the door, giving him that stupid grin of his and came inside, “Where’s your mom?” he said plopping in the middle of the couch.

“She’s on a business trip this weekend,” Keith didn’t dare to sit down.

“Oh wow, we can like throw a real party then,” Lance said tipping his head back to look up at Keith.

Keith lifted his eyebrow and pouted, a look Lance called, ‘the grump face.’

Lance continued to smile that radiante, million watt, celebrities wish they had it, smile, “Man it’s so nice and quiet here. Luis is home for the week, and like, I love his kids, but I’m tired.”

Keith kicked at Lance’s knee, “You going to scoot over.”

Lance had his legs spread, his arms along the back of the couch. He looked content. “Nope.”

Keith rolled his eyes and grabbed the bag of popcorn, “Get the movie set up. What do you want to drink?”

“Mountain Dew baby,” Lance said pointing finger guns at Keith.

Keith turned away before Lance could see his face heat up. He knew that was just Lance being ridiculous, that he tacked names like that onto everyone. But he was still trying to get over the fact that he could consider this a date, but that thought probably hadn’t even crossed Lance’s mind.

He also didn’t think about how the only reason he even had Mountain Dew in the fridge to begin with was because he knew Lance liked it. Well Pidge liked it too, but he never had it around before they started hanging out with Lance and Hunk.

After several minutes of composing himself over the popcorn bowl, Keith finally came back into the room. Lance was now on the floor, spreading out snacks, everything from licorice to poptart.

“You don’t think we can possible eat all that.”

“Well I know you’ll eat most of it, but I’m willing to help you out,” Lance smirked.

Keith rolled his eyes snagging a spot on the couch before Lance decided to hog it again.

“I bought it all before everyone bailed. I would save it, but I picked everything specifically for the perfect combination between flavors, sweet, salty, gummy, tart, chocolatey. And now we have to have everything here.”

“We need Bunch Crunch and Reeses.”

“Yes! Keith that’s my favorite.”

“We need Red Hots.”

“Yes. God, those are also my favorites.”

“We need--”

 

“Yes. Keith we need it all.”

“These are just your favorites,” Keith scoffed

Lance rolled his eyes and chucked a pack of Chewy Goobers at Keith. “Here you go, you crazy raisin freak you.”

Keith sat back with a satisfied smile, “So what movie did you pick.”

Keith picked up the remote and clicked the tv on as Lance opened the dvd player and popped in a cd.

“Drag Me Through Hell and Back. You picked DMTHAB,” Keith turned to Lance, “You hate scary movies.”

“No wrong. I hate horror films. This is one of those comedy horror film.”

“I’m pretty sure you’re wrong.”

Lance got up and sat next to Keith snatching the remote from his hand, “I’ve seen all the ads though. It looks really good. People keep talking about it.”

“Lance. You thought Gremlins was scary.”

Lance scoffed and pouted.

Keith grabbed the remote from Lance’s hand, “Fine. But don’t come crying to me when you get scared.”

Lance flinched for the fifth time. They were probably only twenty minutes into the film and he didn’t look like he was enjoying it at all. He was currently sitting with he knees to his chest, flinching anytime the scene cut. Nothing scary had even happened yet.

“Do you want me to turn it off?”

“No. I’m fine,” Lance said. He had put on his tough voice, normally something he only did when he was in front of a cute person trying to flirt.

Lance flinched again. Keith edged a little closer.

“How are you not scared,” Lance whined.

“Please. This isn’t half as scary as my documentaries.”

“You and your documentaries.”

Another scream broke out from the tv. Keith scoffed at the horrible acting. Lance reached out and clamped around Keith’s arm. Keith tried really hard not to breath as Lance dug his nails into his shirt, clutching for dear life.

This was going to be a long movie.

You could say Keith was a little nervous. Keith could hear Lance’s hitched breath, could almost feel it, as the movie progressed. Plus Lance was almost in his lap by this point. Keith didn’t know what to do or how to feel. He just tried not to think at all. He was also trying not to enjoy every second of this.

Something else must have happened because Lance ducked behind him, a thigh pressed over his. Lance’s claw like grip dug into his back.

“Lance calm down jeez.”

“No way. Keith! This is your fault. Why didn’t you warn me?”

“I did.”

“I thought this was going to be a funny film. It’s not funny,” Lance let out in a plaintive sob.

Keith reached for the remote and turned the tv off. “That’s it were done with this.”

“Wait. But I have to know what happens now,” Lance said untucking himself to peak up at Keith.

“They all die.”

Lance’s face paled, “Seriously?”

“I’ll look it up, but yeah, I’m pretty sure they’re all about to die.”

Lance’s head thunked into Keith’s chest, “Aw man, I was really hoping they would figure it out and be safe and stuff.”

Keith tried to keep his breath even. Lance was trembling. Keith let a hand fall to Lance’s back, cradling him. Lance scooted closer, allowing his legs to flop over Keith’s lap.

“Did you really think that?” Keith said, “Jeez. Didn’t you know that the cult following behind this movie is just a bunch of people rooting for the poltergeist demon character because they think he’s hot?”

“I just knew it was critically acclaimed.”

“Well, you are dumb.”

Keith mind was currently short-circuiting. Lance was in his lap. In his lap! Just sitting there breathing into Keith’s chest, leaning into him, like it was no big deal. He was warm and soft and hard, and entirely too big to be in Keith’s arms, even if Keith did work out. But it also just felt really really nice.

“Do you wanna watch Moana?” Keith managed to croak out.

“Yes please,” Lance said.

Keith picked up the remote and went onto netflix to start the bubbly, singy princess movie that he would never admit to liking. Lance didn’t move, simply snuggled under Keith’s chin.

And after that, they watched the movie and ate the snacks.

Keith walked Lance to the door to say goodbye, “So…”

“Wouldyoubemyboyfriend.”

“What?” Keith said biting his lip.

Lance looked absolutely mortified, but took a breath and stood up taller, “We kind of just had a moment, and well, I’ve liked you for awhile and I was wondering if maybe you would be my boyfriend or at least go out with me on a date or something.”

“Wasn’t this a date?” Keith finally spilled out.

“Kind of? It was Pidge’s idea. I went along with it.”

Keith nodded, “So it was a set up.”

“I’m surprised you figured it out mullet,” Lance smiled, “You haven’t picked up on any of my hints.”

“Knowing how you flirt, it was probably terrible.”

Lance gave him a fake flabbergasted look, “I’ll have you know Keith, that I am a very hot and sought after person. Very hard to pin down, very hard to settle down.”

“But you want to?” Keith peeked a look at Lance, “With me?”

 

“If you’ll have me?”

 

“Yes.”

And Lance smiled that smile of his again, which was perfect and heart melting and just did stupid things to Keith’s brain.

When Lance went home, he made Keith facetime him until he fell asleep, claiming to still be scared.

Back at school that Monday, Keith slipped his hand into Lance’s.

“Oh so it worked,” Hunk said.

“Yep,” Lance smiled.

“How did you like the movie?” Pidge said elbowing Keith.

“Wait you picked the movie?” Keith said. “You didn't tell him it was scary did you.”

Pidge smirked. “Were you all over him, Lance?”

“Pidge!” Lance shrieked.

“He--” Keith started.

Lance wrenched his hand free of Keith, “You know what. I don’t remember. It didn’t happen.” Lance said in a huff.

Pidge and Hunk smirked at Keith, slapping him in congratulations.

Eventually Lance looked back over his shoulder, sneaking a goofy smile at Keith.

Chapter Text

Klance Au Month
February 10, 2019
Day Ten: Youtuber

*Boyfriend*

Lance adjusted the camera for a better angle, “Hey guys, welcome to the livestream.” He looked through the chat, “Yep, just a simple Q and A for you guys today.”

Lance sat back, leaning his chair on its back legs, “I’ll just wait a couple minutes for everyone to get on the chat.” Lance scoffed as he scrolled, “No, I’m not going to fall this time.” Lance put up his hands to adjust his snapback immediately losing his balance. He slammed the chair forward before he could fall, “See didn’t fall. Man too close though,” Lance laughed.

Keith, who was sitting on the couch on the other side of the room started laughing his head off.

“Shush babe, I’m doing a livestream,” Lance said looking pointedly at Keith, who rolled his eyes and went back to reading his book.

Lance went back to the chat, “Oh, yeah, Boyfriend’s here. Say hi everyone.”

Lance watched the chat explode with the nice messages and hellos, before dissolving into his fans chanting at him to show them to Keith.

Lance and Keith had been dating for over three years, had been living together for one, and still nobody knew who Lance was dating. There were a couple reasons for that. Mostly Keith just didn’t want to be bothered by Lance’s fans. Keith had known Lance before he had gotten super popular on Youtube, and Lance felt bad that Keith was now stuck in the middle of it. So he tried to keep Keith as anonymous a possible, earning him the title of “Boyfriend.”

Lance also wasn’t stupid. He was all over the board with his content, doing everything from vlogs to skin care to video games. But he was somehow popular with over millions of views. And his most popular videos were “I’m Bi”, “I Have a Secret Boyfriend,” “I Have Depression,” and “My Boyfriend Got Exposed (clickbait)” which was when his fans finally got a blurry small second clip of Keith when he accidently walked in on Lance’s tic toc video. Lance wasn’t exactly playing his fans, but he knew “Boyfriend” got him views, and as long as Keith wanted to keep himself anonymous what was the harm in having a little fun with that status.

 

“Okay I’m going to start looking through the chat, so have some good questions ready,” Lance threw the camera his killer smile, “oh wow, not surprising they’re all about Boyfriend. Ya here that,” Lance called to Keith, “They all love you.”

Keith scoffed again. Lance just continued to smile at him. They did this all the time, talking with their eyes as Lance made a video, their own secret language. Their friends hated when they communicated like this. Finally he turned back to the camera.

“New night time routine video? Yep. It’s coming. Still editing it. Will be up by the end of next week,” Lance said with a wink.

“Oh, here’s a good one. When did I meet Boyfriend? Good story actually, I wonder why I never shared this. Okay. Storytime.” Lance laughed, “It was before I got super famous, not that I’m like super famous now, lol. So Boyfriend didn’t know like who I was. We met at technical school. Yes go to school kids. I wanted to be a makeup artist you guys will remember and Boyfriend was studying mechanics there, basically I saw his fine ass and knew I had to talk to him.”

Lance felt a beep in his pocket, “Are you texting me from across the room,” Lance said smiling at Keith, “Boyfriend wants you all to know that was not what happend. Jeez exposing me. Okay fine,” Lance turned back to the camera, “He came up to me. I was a mess, pretty much stuttering the whole time. Happy babe?”

Keith smirked at him.

“You are such a little shit babe.”

Lance continued through the chat. He loved this. Loved showing his goofy, charming personality, loved that his obnoxiousness came off so genuine. Lance knew that he was a little shit, that he was cocky and self important, that he, in a lot of ways, needed this. Not that it was always easy or self gratifying. It sometimes shot his nerves. But still. He was happy with the life he had. Happy that people cared about his content. That he got to be himself.

“Okay what does Boyfriend do? Oh well get this guys, Boyfriend has a real job. You know on those car shows where people trick out cars and stuff? Boyfriend does like the cool paint jobs. He like designs motorbike and car paint details and then paints them. It’s really cool. Oh. Yep. He did the van. The blue flames are cool right?”

Lance continued through the questions, “Who tops? Okay. I am not answering that. So let’s just stop asking that okay? Calm down ya thirsty children.” Lance tried not to get annoyed by these questions. He knew they didn’t mean harm, still it wasn’t always easy being out on platforms like this. “Why does Boyfriend not show his face? Okay I’ve talked a little about this but I’ll dissect it if you want. Basically Boyfriend is just really shy.”

Keith flipped him off and mouthed something, “Oh now he is currently telling me to go fuck myself. Thanks babe. You da best.”

“No but seriously. When I got that viral hit two years ago, it was something we discussed. What we would do about our relationship. But I respect Boyfriend’s privacy. He doesn’t want a big fuss around him, so I don’t show him. Respect is really important in relationships kiddos.”

“Does it get trying?” Lance reads off.

“I mean yeah. We are basically around each other twenty-four seven, I mean, you saw last weeks vlog. I have to blur him out and stuff. It’s weird. I don’t like it when youtubers hide themselves. I choose to share my life with you, so in a way, you have a right to expect honesty. Boyfriend is a big part of my life, and I just don’t really share that with you guys. And I feel bad, because I know you guys just have our best interests at heart, but all in all, I dragged Boyfriend into this, and if he doesn’t feel comfortable then I won’t make him do it,”

Lance knew this was delicate knew he had to say the right thing. He watched the comments continued, “Like we are both out and proud and so supportive of this community and the LGBT community, but at the end of the day, Boyfriend just wants to not be attacked by fans. And I love you guys but ya are also kind of scary, which brings me to a point. I know you guys don’t mean it, but seriously, the people that try to “expose” him, like, if you really like me and my content, let's start something like a ‘protect boyfriend gang.’ But yeah gotta respect Boyfriend cuz I dont wanna lose him.”

Lance switched from that heavy topic to the more light questions asking about what music he was listening to and what movies he had seen. As the hour wore on, he felt his voice getting more and more sore.

Finally he said goodbye and turned off the computer. Keith sauntered over and sat on Lance’s lap, “Hey, making that Youtube cash for me?”

Lance chuckled at the joke wrapping his arms around Keith’s waist, “Anything for you babe.”

Keith took one of Lance’s hand in his and kissed his palm, “I ordered a pizza.”

“Pineapple and ham,” Lance said hopefully.

 

“Yep,” Keith said kissing Lance’s knuckles.

Lance leaned into Keith, “You are my angel.

Keith dragged his hands through Lance’s hair, massaging the scalp, “You worked hard today.”

Lance snorted, “Please, I talked to a camera.”

Keith pulled back and squished Lance’s cheeks between his hands, “Hey. Don’t put yourself down. You matter. Your job matters. You work hard.”

Lance smiled, “Thanks.”

Keith kissed him slow and light. “You know. In the future. Maybe I’ll come on the channel.”

Lance squeezed Keith’s middle “Maybe I don’t want to share you,” Lance said.

“I’m serious.”

“Really?” he said hesitantly.

“Like if we get married.”

“Are you proposing to me?”

“In the future. Maybe,” Keith winked.

And Lance dragged Keith closer into his embrace, his head against his chest.

“How did I get so lucky?”

Keith just laughs, “You really did didn’t you.”

“Hey!” Lance interjected.

“I love you,” Keith said against Lance’s lips.

“Love you too.”

Chapter Text

Klance Au Month
February 11, 2019
Day Eleven: Historical

(read the notes, some important stuff in there)

*Keith’s Pride and Lance’s Prejudice*

It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a spouse. This truth is so well fixed that when a man enters into a new neighborhood he is considered the rightful property of his neighbors or their daughters and sons. And that is certainly what happened when Mr. Shirogane bought the Netherfield Park estate near the Serrano-McClain’s humble abode.

The Serrano-McClain household was known throughout the area as being a rather loud, chaotic house, what with five siblings, all of marriageable age. There was the eldest, Adam, a modest and quiet young man, who was considered the most handsome and pleasing of the five. Next there was Leandro, or Lance, as his family called him, a rather well-read young man, full of humor, charm, but flawed by a blunt and whitty tongue. The three youngest siblings were all highly considered good company, but could also be rather silly.

And it was these silly sisters, along with their mother, who were currently squawking over the news of Mr. Shirogane and his arrival to the area. They were currently discussing which of the five children he would take an interest in and marry. A topic silly in itself as the Serrano-McClain’s had no money to their name nor connections that would end in such a suitable marriage to someone of Mr. Shirogane’s class.

But it was to be that Mr. Shirogane would be at the country ball that coming evening, so the siblings laughed and danced and got ready for their evening of finary to come.

Upon on arrival, the party seemed a splendid thing, a room filled with people decked out in finary, but in reality Lance knew while jovial times were ahead, there would also be a humid hall crowded with people and too much wine that would surely send his mother or sisters into conversation that would embarrass the family.

So Lance took his eldests and most sensible brothers hand and together with his good friend Hunk, they danced and made marry throughout the hall.

Suddenly the music paused as two men and a young woman entered the hall. They were clearly above the Serrano-McClain’s and their neighbors, dressed so finely and with such noble faces. Lance watched with interest as the crowd parted, the mayor coming up to the three to introduce the newcomers to the important members of the party.

It was clear that this was Mr. Shirogane and his sister. The other man standing between the two was fine enough, Lance thought, but he looked all together miserable at being at the festivities, his eyes surveying the room indifferently as if he was only hoping there would be some type of hidden exit.

Lance turned to Hunk “He looks miserable poor soul,” Lance said with humor.

“Miserable he may be, but poor he is not. That tall dark man is Mr. Kogane. He owns half of devonshire.”

Lance smirked as the group made their way through the quiet whispering hall, “He must own the miserable half.”

The group passed by the three of them, Mr. Kogane hardly glancing at them. Lance had to keep himself from laughing at the stupidity of it all. They, or at least Mr. Kogane, thought he was too good to be in this rough company. Lance wouldn’t admit it, but Mr. Kogane’s unimpressed glances made him a little more than upset. Lance knew he was sweaty, red cheeked with hair plastered to his forehead, but surely his beautiful brother could have attracted his attention and changed his mind as to the homeliness of country folk.

When the music finally started up again, his mother was pulling him and his siblings along to be introduced to this fine and gentlemanly party. The five siblings were introduced with little fanfare, the dull looks from Mr. Kogane continuing, and only a little bit of ridiculousness and breathy explanations from his mother.

Lance looked to Mr. Shirogane who was now quiet red and flustered on having taken Adam’s hand. Lance smiled to himself and watched the handsome pair walk off to join the dancing. Lance only hoped his brother got on with Mr. Shirogane and that he showed his true feelings, as his brother could often be over modest and quiet.

Lance gave another look at Mr. Kogane and Mr. Shirogane’s sister before settling back into the clusters of people.

Lance watch Adam and Mr. Shirogane dance, the two seeming quiet infatuated with each other, Mr. Shirogane stumbling over his words, but not foul footed with his dancing whatsoever. Lance thought they made a fine pair.

Out of the corner of Lance’s eye, he saw the dark and tall Mr. Kogane also watching them too. And Lance having little else to do approached him, “Do you dance Mr. Kogane?”

Mr. Kogane looked at Lance and crossed his arms, “Not if I can help it.” his frown deeped. He looked away as if upset Lance had bothered him.

Lance was put off by this bluntness. Normally people at least pretended to be jovial at parties. Lance studied Mr. Kogane’s dark features, but he had turned away from her, seeming unwilling to add little else to the conversation, so Lance quietly excused himself. He could find better partners to talk to anyway. Even if Mr. Kogane was handsome, it didn’t mean he was good company..

Lance saw Hunk standing in the shadows of the dance hall and ran up to him to share that rather embarrassing encounter. The two were tucked in the shadow behind a partition wall meant to divide the room; it gave a good view of the hall, but nobody would be able to see them from this vantage point, which made it perfect for gossiping, and for spying.

Just as Lance finished retelling the story, Mr. Kogane and Mr. Shirogane walked by.

“Speak of the devil.”

Lance shushed his companion.

“There are very many handsome people here,” Mr. Shirogane said starry-eyed

“You are dancing with the most beautiful I’m sure,” Mr. Kogane replied rather bored.

“Oh come now,” Mr. Shirogane said playfully touching the man's arm, “Mr. Serrano-McClain’s brother, Leandro, I think his name was, is rather handsome as well.”

“Barely tolerable,” Mr. Kogane said, “Not handsome enough to tempt me.”

Lance felt his blood boil. Barely tolerable? Not handsome? Lance knew he did not compare to his oldest brother, but still. Barely tolerable? That was more of a blow to his self esteem than he was willing to admit. Hunk looked at him, his eyes wide and large.

“Hush. I’m counting my blessings. I would rather not like to talk to him for all his miserable devonshire.”

Unfortunately his night of enduring Mr. Kogane’s lack of civility was not to end, as his mother wrangled him and Adam into a conversation with Mr. Kogane and Mr. Shirogane. After seeing Mr. Shirogane and Adam, she acted as though she wanted them to be married the next day, bringing in all sorts of embarrassing details about their family that Lance would rather not be shared.

Mrs. Serrano-McClain got to talking of poetry and Adam’s encounter with a rather bad poet, and Lance immediately jumped in to derail the conversation, “Poetry really can drive away a love, rather than inspiring it.”

Mr. Kogane looked at Lance less darkly and more quizzically, “But poetry is the food of love.”

“It’s fine and good, if you can produce poetry that is beautiful and true, otherwise you may bore or scare your love away,” Lance said returning the challenging gaze.

“What do you recommend then. To encourage feelings.”

Lance felt the twist of a smile on his lips and he really couldn’t help himself from stabbing Mr. Kogane with his own words, even if he was rich and handsome, “Dancing. Even if one’s partner is barely tolerable.”

Lance watched as Mr. Kogane took in a careful breath, his eye darkening as he registered what Lance had said. Lance then turned on his heel and walked out of the hall, quiet sure that he had never had a man act so rudely to him, sure that he would never talk to Mr. Kogane again if he could help it, and quiet certain his pride and vanity had not been hurt and that he would not cry as he made his way out of the dance hall and into the cool night air.

Chapter Text

Klance Au Month
February 12, 2019
Day Twelve: Role Reversal

*A Pilot Episode*

With a bored look Keith switched on the stabilizer to help the ship land. It had been a standard simulation run. Too easy for him. He looked back to his engineer and his communication officer, they looked bored as well, not that Keith really cared to get to know them.

The only reason he was here was because his foster parents knew his potential. And Keith, the loving yet awkward son he was, would do anything to please his family.

Keith landed the pod and the simulation ended.

“Good work Alpha squad,” Iverson’s harsh voice called over the speaker, “Now come out for evaluation.”

Keith glazed over as Iverson went over their flight, perfect as always. While Iverson and Keith didn’t really get along, after Keith had finally settled down and “gotten over his attitude problem” there really wasn’t anything the older man could berate him for. Keith was on his way to being the young star pilot of the Garrison.

Still, Keith wondered if there was more out there, more than this.

Iverson pulled him aside after class, “Son a word.”

Keith crossed his arms, “Sir?”

“I think you could perform better.”

Keith felt a lick of anger, “What do you want from me? I’m quiet in class. I do the drills. I thought you would be happy with me.”

“Son. You have a lot of potential. I see that. But being a pilot isn’t all about that. It’s also about being a leader.”

“What wrong with my leading? I piloted the team fine.”

Iverson gave him a pitying look, “I hear things. I get it Keith, you aren’t super social, but leading takes something more than just barking the right directions. You have have compassion for your team. You are responsible for them.”

“Are you telling me to make friends?”

“In essence. Yes.”

“I’m not doing anything wrong.”

“I hear you sneak out at night. I hear you won’t talk to anyone.”

“So?”

“So. If I don’t see you trying to be a better leader, I’m going to make someone else Alpha squad leader, when you graduate I’ll promote someone else, I’ll make someone else a commander,” he looked at Keith’s clenched expression, “I’m just looking out for you.”

Keith done with this conversation, saluted curtly and left.

That night Keith snuck out of the Garrison to the roof, it was stupid, but it was the only small way Keith could feel alive, reclaim his delinquent past.

“I know your behind me,” he said as he climbed the stairs to the roof.

He turned to his roommate and engineer Hunk, a broad kid who got nauseous if Keith steered too fast.

“I’m not following you,” Hunk said in a rush.

Keith raised an eyebrow.

“I was just wondering where you were going. You could get in trouble you know.”

“So?” Keith opened the door, the sudden wind whipping his bangs.

“So. I could get in trouble too man, you heard Iverson today. He’ll have your head and mind if he knows I let you wander around after hours.”

“You were listening?”

“Maybe?”

Keith turned and huffed. He didn’t like people getting in his business.

Keith walked into the cool night air. Almost out of sight, he could see another kid surrounded by screens and weird appliances, “Pidge?” Keith said approaching the figure.

Pidge jumped. "Agh!—Oh, Keith, Hunk, No, um, just looking at stars."

"Hey where'd you get this stuff? It doesn't look like Garrison tech."

"I built it."

“You built all this?" Hunk said. He reached out to touch the computer, Pidge firmly smacked his hand.

"Stop it! With this thing, I can scan all the way to the edge of the solar system."

“What’s the deal?” Keith asked, “looking for aliens or something?”

“No. It’s more complicated than that,” Pidge said with a look.

“Come on tell us,” Keith said not one to be kept in the dark.

“Yeah tell us Pidge, Keith needs to make friends and bond with the team,” He said with a smirk at Keith.

Keith crossed his arms and glared.

"Fine,” Pidge said “The world as you know it is about to change. The Kerberos Mission wasn't lost because of some malfunction or crew mistake—"
“That’s just a conspiracy,” Keith said immediately.

"Well get this. I've been scanning the system and picking up alien radio chatter."

"Whoa, what? Aliens?!" Hunk cut in.

“That’s insane,” Keith said already interested.

“They keep repeating one word: "Voltron". And tonight, it's going crazier than I have ever heard it."

"How crazy?" Keith asked.

Suddenly the Garrison building alarms went off. A voice cut in over the PA system, “Attention, students. This is not a drill. We are on lockdown! Security situation Zulu Niner.
Repeat: All students are to remain in barracks until further notice."

Keith looked up. The sky lit up as something streaked across the sky?

“What's going on? Is that a meteor?! ... A very, very big... meteor?" Hunk called.

Pidge grabbed up a pair of binoculars “It’s a ship.”

Keith immedialty snached the binoculars to look. “That is not one of ours.”

Pidge answered solemnly, “It’s one of theirs.”

The ship crashed down, lighting up the horizon. They watched as Garrison vehicles zoomed out of the compound into the desert.

“We gotta get down there,” Keith said excitedly.

“Oh this is not what Iverson meant by team bonding Keith,” Hunk said following after him.

They hid behind a rock near the crash sight.

“Man, we'll never get past all those guards to get a look." Keith said.

"Aw, man. Yeah, we—yeah I guess there's nothing to do but head back to the barracks, right?" Hunk said.

Pidge cut in "Wait. They set up a camera in there and I grabbed its feed. Look!"

The three of them looked to their laptop.

There was a man on the screen being held down by guys in hazmat suits, "Hey! What are you doing?"

"Calm down, Shiro. We just need to keep you quarantined until we run some tests on you."

The man on the table struggled, "You have to listen to me! They destroyed worlds! Aliens are coming!"

"That's Shiro! The pilot of the Kerberos Mission. That guy's my hero!" Keith said.

"Guess he's not dead in space after all." Hunk said.

"Where's the rest of the crew?" Pidge asked.

"Do you know how long you've been gone?" Iverson in a hazmat suit asked.

"I don't know. Months? Years? Look, there's no time. Aliens are coming here for a weapon. They're probably on their way. They'll destroy us! We have to find Voltron!"

“Voltron? Pidge echoed.

The other guy in the hazmat suit spoke up, "Sir, take a look at this. It appears his arm has been replaced with a cyborg prosthetic."

"Put him under until we know what that thing can do."

Shiro struggled against the table restraints, "Don't, don't be me under! No! No, there's no time! Let me go!"

"They didn't ask about the rest of the crew." Pidge said in shock.

"What are they doing? The guy's a legend. They're not even gonna listen to him?" Keith called angry.

"We have to get him out." Pidge said.

"Ah, I hate to be the voice of reason here, always, but weren't we just watching on TV because there was no way to get past the guards?"

"That was before we were properly motivated. We've just got to think. Could we tunnel in?" Keith said, yeah he wasn’t always the smartest tool in the box.

"Maybe we could get some hazmat suits and sneak in like med techs."

"Or we dress up like cooks, sneak into the commissary... little late-night snack,” Hunk said hopefully.

"What we need is a distraction." Keith said.

An explosion echoed in the distance, Keith watched as the sky lit up red and orange.

"Is that the aliens?! Are—Tha—The—Is that the aliens?! Are they here?! They got here so quick!" Hunk asked trembling a little.

"No. Those explosions were a distraction, for him!" Keith said pointing as a thin kid darted across the dark.

"The Garrison's headed towards the blast, and he's sneaking in from the other side!" Pidge said.

Keith looked through the binoculars, “No way, it’s just a kid.”

“Wait. Know is it?” Hunk asked.

“Don’t know. Gotta find out I guess. Keith started sprinting the others following closely behind him.

***
Lance carefully snuck into the training room, a stun gun in each hand. It would knock someone out for a few hours if you hit in the right spot, and lucky Lance was a good shot.

Lance peeked around the corner, touching his blue bandana, making sure it was in place, before turning the corner. He hit the first guy, before the second man even had time to blink. Lance shot again and the other guy was out cold too.

Lance pocketed his guns before turning to the man on the table.

“Shiro?” Lance called turning the man’s face to his. Lance couldn’t believe it. He pulled down his bandana. Shiro, the man who had always been there for him, practically raised him.

When Lance was twelve years old his parents had sent him to the United States, he had been lucky enough to get a scholarship to the Garrison. But with little money and no connections, Lance had practically been on his own. Shiro, also an international student, saw him struggling. Saw that he was failing, that he couldn’t fit in. Shiro took him in, helped him with his grades, took him under his wing.

But that had all changed when Shiro had apparently died. When Adam had given up on him, Lance was the last person left, hoping his hero would somehow come back. But that had gotten Lance into trouble, in more ways than one.

Lance propped the man up and slung his arm over his shoulder.

“Hey need some help,” Someone said walking in and taking Shiro’s other side.

Lance’s eyes widened as none other than Keith Kogane, star of the Galaxy Garrison cadets, approached him with open arms.

“Oh, no. no, no, no, no, no you don’t. I’m saving Shiro.”

“Who are you?” Keith said glaring at Lance.

“Who am I? Uh, the name’s Lance?”

Keith continued to stare blankly.

“We were the same class at the Garrison?”

“Really? Are you an engineer?”

“No,” Lance drawled, “I’m a pilot. We were, like, rivals. You know Lance and Keith neck and neck.”

“Oh wait,” Keith said, “I remember you. You were that cargo pilot that Shiro was always helping out. You got kicked out.”

Lance saw red for a minute. Like he needed reminding. But Lance allowed him and the other two kids to help him out of the building.

“Do you have somewhere to hide?” Keith asked him.

“It’s none of your business Mullet.”

“Well what are you going to do then? Do you even have a ride out of here?”

Lance frowned, “No.”

Keith frowned at him frustrated. “Wait, I have an idea.”

The four, along with the comatose Shrio, followed Keith to a small rock outlet behind the Garrison. “I keep my old hovercraft out here. It might be hard for us all to for us all to fit.”

“Hey. We gotta hurry,” Pidge said looking over their shoulder, “We got company.”

Keith hopped on the bike, the other’s pilling on after them. As they zoomed off, three garrison cars followed after them, obviously now aware that they were getting away with Shiro.

Can't this thing go any faster?" Lance asked.

"We could toss out some non-essential weight." Keith said

"Oh, right! ... ... ... OK, so that was an insult. I get it."

"Hunk, lean left!"

Suddenly they were approaching a cliff.

Guys? Is th-th-th-tha-tha—Is that a cliff up ahead?" Hunk yelled.

"Ooooh no, no, no! No, no, no, no—!" Lance cried out.

"Yup." Keith said with a visible smirk.

They somehow made it off the cliff safely and found themselves in Lance’s hideaway shack. Shiro eventually recovered, but Lance could tell that something wasn’t right with him.

Lance showed the group what he was working on, his conspiracy board full of diagrams and notes, he knew there was something out there, something connected to Shiro, to all of this, he just hadn’t found it yet.

Keith looked at him obviously impressed. Hunk and Pidge looked at the board and conversed with Lance, soon figuring out something that Lance had never noticed. With Pidge’s technology, Hunk figured out that the spot Lance had been searching for really wasn’t that far away.

The group followed their new clue into the desert, soon finding a small cave. The cave was lit by carvings. “I’ve seen stuff like this,” Lance said, “But I’ve never seen this place before.”

Keith touched the wall, the marks instantly glowing.

“I’ve never seen that before,” Lance said.

They went further into the cave, suddenly the ground collapsed beneath them, the group falling into a cavern of water. Lance looked up. Filling most of the cavern in front of them was a giant blue lion inside a force field.

“Does anyone get the feeling they’ve been here before?” Keith asked looking to Lance. He and the others shook their head, “Strange,” Keith said.

Keith walked up to the forcefield.

“How do we get in?” Lance asked.

“Maybe you have to knock?” Keith said knocking on the forcefield. It dissipated, around the lion. Suddenly Lance’s mind fills with a strange image of five lion robots like the one in front of them, forming a tall robot.”

“Woah…” everyone said.

“Did you guys see that?” Lance asked.

“Voltron is a robot” Hunk called, “A huge robot.”

“And we found a part of it,” Pidge called.

Keith was then dashing into the lion, Lance following after him.

Lance pushed him out of the way, eager to get in first, reaching for the controls, “Nothing's happening.”

“Here,” Keith said reaching forward. As Keith touched the controls, the lion lit up blue. Lance shuffled out of the way as Keith took the pilot seat, “This is so cool.”

The group came over looking amazed at the tech as their friend was able to turn on the lion.

Lance stood back from the group. Of course it was Keith. It was always Keith. Lance used to have a crush of Keith, not that he would admit it, before his life fell apart, before Keith took everything that Lance had ever wanted.

Lance had been looking for this for months, but it was Keith that got to fly the cool robot. Lance frowed to himself. He was just never enough…

Chapter Text

Klance Au Month
February 13, 2019
Day Thirteen: Disney

*The Disney Date*

Lance was not a morning person. Except on Disneyland days. Even now, after he had been to the parks countless times, he still got hyper like a six year old after eating one to many donuts.

Lance was dressed in a t-shirt and shorts, all Disney merch of course, his Minnie ears propped on his head. His Disney go-bag, stuffed with snacks and useful items was slung over his shoulder. He wasn’t supposed to wear shoes in the house, but he already had on his limited edition Disney tennis shoes on. He swung on his lanyard, feeling the familiar wait of his pins.

Lance was sitting at the bay-window waiting for Keith’s car to pull up the driveway.

Despite the excitement, Lance was also extremely nervous. Lance normally went to the park with Pidge, Hunk and sometimes Rachel or Allura. Living a short twenty-five minutes from the park, they all had passes and would go after school or on weird holidays. But today Lance was going with Keith. On a date. A date!

This had been Lance’s dream for a long time. Not just going on a date with Keith, but a Disney date. Lance not only loved the park, but also considered it the best place for a first date. The parks provided enough entertainment to keep awkward conversation at bay, but there were also lines to wait in a food to eat to provide enough time and experiences to bond. Plus Lance just found it all just so damn romantic. And today he was going with Keith. The guy he had been crushing on since ninth grade.

Lance was determined this date would go perfect and by the end of the night they would be boyfriends.

The odd rattling of metal and an old engine that sounded on its last legs could be heard coming down the street and Lance pounced toward the door to meet Keith in his old car.

Lance was all smiles and waves till he saw the car. In the drivers spot was Keith, looking a little more than put out as he wasn’t normally a morning person, beside him was Pidge and in the back, Hunk.

Lance stopped short. Pidge waved to him and Lance climbed into the back of the car.

“Excited,” Hunk said to him. “I can’t believe you finally convinced Keith to join us.”

“Uh yeah,” Lance said staring into the back of Keith’s head. What was going on? Lance was sure that he asked Keith. Just Keith. To go out with him. So why was the gang here?

“What’s wrong?” Pidge said turning to face them.

“Nothing. Just tired.”

“You probably didn’t sleep last night,” Keith said pulling out of the driveway.

“Yeah. That’s it.”

“You are such a little kid.”

Lance didn’t take the bait to bicker with Keith.

Instead he took off his ears so he could lean his head against the window and close his eyes. He was sure he had asked Keith out. Did he misunderstand? Had he not understood that Lance wanted to go on a date with him? Or even worse, was this his way of letting Lance down gently? Did he not want to date Lance and this was his way of explaining it? That seemed too cruel for Keith, but then again they had had weird miscommunication before.

When they finally got parked and off the tram, Lance had already stuffed down his feelings. Okay, he told himself, this is fine, sure you’re disappointed, but this is just switching gears, you can do this, you can still have a fun time.

Keith didn’t have a pass, so they had to get in line for tickets outside the park.

“I’ll be right back,” Lance said.

Lance dashed back towards Downtown Disney and came back a few minutes later with a large white bag and four cups of coffee.

“Thank god,” Pidge said grabbing at a cup.

“That’s Keith. It doesn’t have creme in it.”

“Awww so cute taking care of Keith,” Pidge said poking his cheek.

 

Lance sputtered, “He’s lactose intolerant. I’m just being a good friend.”

“What’s going on?” Keith said, finally out of the queue.

“Lance got us beignets and coffee!” Hunk exclaimed happily, his mouth already covered in powdered sugar.

“Yeah, I got them at the jazz kitchen down the street.”

“What are they?” Keith said, taking the coffee from Lance. The four of them started walking towards the main gates.

“They’re like donuts from New Orleans. They’re in the Princess in the Frog movie. They’re really good.”

Keith took on of the hot pasterries out of the bag and bit into it. Instantly his face and the front of his shirt was converted in a spray of white.

“Shit,” Keith said trying to brush it off.

Lance stepped forward laughing. We whipped the tip of Keith’s nose, “Here.”

And then Keith was looking in Lance’s eyes and there was a moment when Lance questioned, did he really not feel the same because the way he was looking at him…

Lance stepped back and away determined not to make this awkward. Keith had always been a bag of mixed signals, and Lance didn’t want to be pulled into that again, especially when it was so obvious he didn’t want to go on this date alone with Lance.

“Come on guys. We have to hit Space Mountain first before the line gets too long.”

Pidge and Lance bee-lined for the gate, “If we go fast we can go twice.”

“Ah man,” Hunk said trying to keep pace with them. “Really right off the bat? Guys I’m gonna get sick.”

“You can take the chicken exit,” Pidge said.

“But we have even numbers. Do you really want me to sit next to some smelly rando?” Lance called already heading past the entrance through the tunnel out onto Main Street.

“I’ll wait with Hunk,” Keith said trying to keep pace, obviously not as used to diverting around the clumps of people the way Lance, Pidge and Hunk were.

“What scared Mullet?” Lance said.

Keith’s brows scrunched, “Ha. You wish.”

Lance spotted the trolley coming up the street, “Pidge look the Dapper Dans are here today.” He made puppy eyes at her.

“Lance if we get on the trolley it will cut down ride time, you know how important it is to get as much in as possible during the first hour.”

“Please please please.”

“Fine.”

Lance steered the group to the trolley’s pick up point, Keith trailing them, even more confused as they got on an old time trolley. Four guys in colorful pinstripe suits greeted them as the trolley pulled down Mainstreet USA. Then they started to sing.

“Hell no,” Keith said looking embarrassed as passersby stared at the trolley. Lance looked at Keith. Like always he was wearing all black, a red hoodie tied around his waist. He did not look ready for a day at Disney in the slightest, not like Pidge Hunk and him who were decked in Disney gear and comfortable shoes. At least his hair was tied up today. Lance found himself staring at the back of his neck. Or maybe it was a really bad idea that his hair was up.

They hopped off the trolley in front of the main square, directly in front of the castle and then made their way towards Tomorrowland. Without stopping they finished their breakfast and speed walked past the shops and rides to the far back of the park where the line for Space Mountain started.

“Sweet fifteen minutes still,” Lance said.

They walked up a ramp and weaved through the chains until they were corralled into the tunnels that led down into the ride.

Pidge and Lance were practically bouncing as they entered the star themed ride, walking down the ramp to where you got on. Hunk looked a little less happy, and more nervous.

“We have to ask to wait for the front,” Pidge said.

“Oh please god no,” Hunk called.

Lance looked back to Keith, he still looked a little shell shocked and pouty. Keith wasn’t always that big on crowds and noise. Oh god what if he didn’t want to be here at all. Lance poked Keith in the side, “You excited right?”

“Uh yeah. This is a fun ride right?”

The three turned to Keith.

“Keith. Have you never been to Disneyland?”

“No?” He said wide eyed and confused.

“Keith. You’ve lived here for six years and you have never been?”

Keith shrugged. “Nobody ever asked and it’s not like my mom would want to go.”

Lance grabbed Keith’s shoulders. “Keith. Why didn’t you say so? This literally changes everything.”

Pidge poked Lance and they continued down the ramp to the ride attendant.

They were quickly shuffled onto the ride. Lance next to Keith. Pidge next to Hunk, who now shut in the ride, had forgotten to get off.

“Okay. After this change of plans. We gotta visit the castle. Take a photo with at least one character.” The car started forward, the attendant checking their seatbelts. “We gotta get on all the little kid rides. The train for sure and the Tiki room. And Jungle Cruise. We gotta do it all. Keith seriously this is a whole different battle strategy.”

“I didn’t realize it would make a difference,” they were now entering the darkness of the ride, the car slowly pulling up a ramp as lights and music played.

“Well it does. We can’t just speed past things. You have to experience everything and in a particular order.”

“He’s right,” Pidge called. “It’s different when you are a virgin.”

Hunk was too busy freaking out to comment.

They ride finally made it up the ramp into the darkness, stars surrounding them. And Lance heard a small gasp next to him. The countdown started and Lance smiled as the familarness of the ride took over. “Hands up everybody.”

The ride sounded “liftoff” and they were plunged downward. Lance felt a smile take over him as they were speed over loops and around turns. Lance heard quiet laughing beside him and felt himself beaming.

They turned the last bend and Hunk Pidge and Lance threw themselves into poses, Keith caught wide eyed and blinking in the bright flash. They pulled back into the ride drop off zone and got off the ride. Hunk did indeed look sick, but Pidge and Lance were prancing out of the ride to go see their photo.

Lance glanced back at Keith, hair disheveled, eyes wide.

“Did you have fun?”

Keith looked up and broke out into a smile that was just the goddamn most beautiful thing Lance had ever seen. Lance turned away before Keith could see his blush.

“Okay. What’s next?” Pidge asked.

“Can we slow down guys,” Hunk said a hand over his mouth.

“NO,” Lance and Pidge said in unison.

“Come on back to the front of the park guys,” the group weaved back through the now more crowded streets to the pink and blue castle.

Lance looked back at Keith who was stuck behind a heavier guy in a motorized scooter. Lance rolled his eyes and grabbed Keith wrist, “Follow me.” Lance tried not to enjoy the warmth of Keith’s wrist or acknowledge the speeding of his heart.

The rest of the day was passed by at a much slower pace. They took Keith around the park showing him cool things, rattling off Disney facts, taking photos. Keith especially liked the fast rides, and, surprisingly, the Jungle Cruise.

“Hippos. Really Keith?”

“They’re neat.”

Lance rolled his eyes and they got in the single rider line for Indiana Jones. “It’s not like we need to sit next to each other and now we won’t have to wait as long,” Lance said pointing out another of his tips to Keith.

They passed through the temple entrance into the cave like line.

“I actually have a really funny story about this,” Lance said walking next to Keith, Pidge and Hunk behind them.

“What?”

“When I was seven I went on this ride and there’s like this cave section, with like little holes and shit. And this guy was waiting to scare his friend and popped up at me instead. Scared me shitless. I wouldn't ride this forever after that, actually the line still makes me a little uncomfortable.”

Keith looked at Lance and swung an arm protectively over his shoulder.

Lance looked at Keith, who instantly moved his hand away, “Was this...is that okay? I thought...”

“Oh no. It’s fine. Uh thanks.”

Lance looked away and Keith settled his hand back around Lance and they walked through the maze of the line until they were put into the single riders area.

The attendant called Keith up. Lance instantly missed the heat of him. Hunk went up alone looking upset and already ready to puke. Then Pidge and Lance got seated next to a group of two.

As the ride rumbled off Pidge poked Lance in the stomach. “What was that.”

“What was what?”

“You and Keith.”

“He was just being nice!”

“Uh huh.”

“He was!”

“I mean. It’s obvious he likes you. And you won’t shut up about him.”

“He doesn't like me. Okay?” Lance said as the attendant checked their seatbelts.

“Okayyyyyy. What’s your problem?”

“My problem was this was supposed to be a date. You weren’t supposed to be here!”

“But Keith said,” Pidge bit her lip, “Oh god. Now I see.”

“What?”

But then the ride was starting up and they were whisked away into the temple.

After the ride Pidge and Lance walked to where Keith and Hunk should be waiting outside. Pidge smirked up at Lance, “Don’t worry. I got an idea.”

“I don’t like that look Pidge.”

“You just let me do my job. Go on Dumbo or some stupid shit. Be cute. Be flirty I’ll handle the rest. And give me this,” Pidge said grabbing Lance’s jacket.

Lance was about to ask what Pidge meant but then Lance saw a familiar head.

“Wow,” Pidge said as they walked up to Hunk and Keith. “You really don’t look good Hunk.”

“Actually it wasn’t that bad. I think…”

“I think you need to sit down for a bit,” Pidge said glaring at Hunk widing her eyes trying to communicate through her eyebrows.

“Oh yeah. I’ll just sit uh… for a bit.”

“That’s fine. I don’t mind a break,” Keith said.

“No. You and Lance go off. I’ll take care of the big guy,” Pidge said shoving Keith and Lance into the crowd.

“Are you sure?” Keith said.

“Absolutely. We’ll see you in a bit.”

“Uh. Yeah. Come on Keith. Let’s go on Haunted Mansion, then we can head back to Fantasyland.”

“If you’re sure…”

“Yep. We’ll catch up in about an hour?” Pidge said.

Good thing Keith was obvious.

Lance didn’t know if he should feel relieved, confused or upset. Why did Pidge think this would work? It was obvious Keith didn’t want this to be a date. Why put his hopes out there? Still he trusted his friends.

The two stood in line, a little awkward and quiet in the soft winter sun. Keith was gazing off into the distance, his same stilted self. Jeez Lance needed something to talk about. School? Prom was coming up? No that was a bad idea.

Lance suddenly took off his Minnie ears and shoved them onto Keith’s head. Keith looked up perplexed.

Lance laughed at his confused face, he always looked so severe until you surprised him, then he regained some of his boyishness. “They’re cute.”

Keith pouted but didn’t take them off, “You look good in them too...I mean you’re cute...they’re cute.”

They stared into each others eyes, and there it was, that same magical tension.

Someone made a grunt and the moment was broken as they moved up in line.

“So. You never wanted to go to Disneyland?”

“I mean. I’ve been to Knotts and Six Flags. I thought they were better because of the price and they have better thrill rides.”

Lance wagged a finger, “Keith. It’s not just about rides. Yeah Disney is expensive, but it’s all about ambiance. Can’t you feel the magic here? Detail is put into every little thing.”

Keith looked at Lance a smirk on his face.

“What?”

“You really like Disney. I mean I know you sing the songs and watch the movies and stuff, but you’ve really bought into this evil company haven’t you?”

Lance felt a blush creep up his neck, “So what? It’s fun. Disney’s really important to me.” Lance looked at his shoes, “It’s one thing that always makes me feel better. It makes me happy.”

“I’m not looking down on your passion. It’s cute.” Keith smiled gently at Lance and they walked into the elevator of the ride.

After the ride, something happened between the two. Something unsaid, yet still something changed. It was little things. They were acting like a couple. And it was setting Lance’s heart into a frenzy.

“Pidge texted. She said they’re stuck in line for Splash and will meet us later,” Lance said.

“What’s going on? I thought they were making their way over?”

“You know Pidge and Hunk.”

A light pink settled against Keith’s cheeks, “It’s fine I guess.”

Lance bought a churro and Keith grabbed Lance’s hand to take a bite. They shared a water and Lance tried not to think of that stupid anime trope of an “indirect kiss.” Keith and Lance went on Dumbo, the two tall boys, knees squished to their ears, closer than was entirely necessary. They took a couples photo with Flynn and Rapunzel. It was just way too much for Lance’s poor little heart.

Just as the sun was setting and the lights turned on, Lance and Keith made their way to the carousel. Lance pointed to a horse, “That’s the Mary Poppins one. I like to ride that one cuz it’s pretty, but it’s hard to get sometimes.”

When they were let onto the ride, Keith sprinted towards the Mary Poppins horse almost pushing over a small girl.

“Keith!” Lance said half angry, half laughing.

“What? You wanted it,” Keith pouted. Keith offered a hand and helped Lance swing up onto the horse, taking the one next to him.

The ride started and Lance jovially whooped and called out, enjoying the ride probably more than an eighteen year old should.

Lance felt his pocket buzz. Pidge had sent him a snap of him and Keith smiling on the carousel. He carefully looked around but couldn’t see his friends. Pidge sent another snap. “See you for dinner. Make your move lover boy.”

Lance looked agasp, but Pidge was right. They were graduating soon. Lance needed to make his move now or never.

When they got off the ride they made their way to Peter Pan, one of Lance’s favorites. Lance shivered, “Damn I gave my jacket to Pidge.”

“Here. I’m like a furnace anyway,” Keith shrugged handing over the hoodie. Lance put it on smelling Keith’s smoky, spicy scent and it was just way too much.

“It’s so stupid, you invited Pidge and Hunk and we haven’t seen them in hours,” Lance said innocently.

“Yeah…”

“Hey, Keith?”

“I thought. I...did you want to come here with me?”

“What. Of course I did. I’m having a lot of fun with you guys.”

Lance looked down, “But you know I asked you? You know, just you. Because...why did you invite them without telling me?”

Keith stared at Lance for what felt like an agonizingly long minute. He pushed a loose hair behind his ear. “I...I…”

Now at the front of the line, they climbed into their pirate ship, the bar coming down on them. Lance felt uncomfortable as hell looking at Keith’s distressed face. God he had fucked up. Keith really didn’t want to go on this date. Oh God. “It’s fine. I get it.”

The ride started forward into the Darling’s bedroom, happy, and charming, and everything Lance didn’t feel right now.

“No,” Keith stuttered out. Lance turned to him. “I. I was nervous. I thought. I thought you didn’t mean for it to be a date, and I just couldn’t handle that alone so I invited Pidge and Hunk.”

“You didn’t think I meant it?”

“I thought you said ‘it’s a date’ just as a thing!”

“Keith.”

“And then being alone with you when I like you and,” Keith wouldn’t look at Lance.

Lance grabbed his hand on the seat, “Keith you absolute moron.”

Finally those galaxy eyes settled on him, lighting up as they flew over the minituure London, “I want to date you!”

“Really?” Keith said now a breath apart.

“Yes. I was going to ask you to be my boyfriend.”

Lance looked down at Keith’s lips. Keith inched closer.

“God we are disasters,” Keith said against Lance’s lips.

It was a quick peck. Skin against skin. It shouldn’t have been anything.

But it was everything, lighting up Lance’s insides somewhere between the most natural best thing ever and literal fire burning him alive.

“Yes.” Keith said.

“Wha--”

“I’ll be your boyfriend.”

Lance blushed and turned, “Yeah okay.”

Keith laced their fingers together and settled his head on Lance’s shoulder.

After that they met up with Pidge and Hunk for dinner.

“Finally figured your shit out I see,” Pidge said as Keith and Lance continued to hold hands.

Hunk let out a sigh, “I thought you too were going to be making those secret goo goo eyes at each other forever.”

“What do you mean?” Lance said blushing again.

“Oh it was so funny,” Pidge said. “First Keith would look at you all starry-eyed, but then look away, and then you would look at him. It was a little sickening actually.”

Keith and Lance stuttered and looked away, but their hands still laced together under the table. Keith squeezed and Lance squeezed back.

After a few more rides they lined up to view the fireworks on Mainstreet. Lance, who had already seen the show several times, couldn’t look away from Keith as he starred in awe at the bright lights and explosions.

As the finale went off Keith turned to Lance. He closed the distance and pressed another kiss to Lance. Lance breathed into the kiss, letting himself melt into it, latching a hand onto that stupid bare neck of Keith’s. But soon they were pulling away, ready to get back to the rides before the night was up.

Hunk elected to drive home. Keith who was exhausted, allowed it, and leaned into Lance, immediately falling asleep on Lance’s shoulder.

“We tired him out huh?” Pidge said.

“Yeah,” Lance kissed the top of Keith’s head and smiled. As he leaned into Keith’s warmth he knew that this was the best trip to Disney that he would ever have.

Chapter Text

Klance au month
February 14 2019
Day Fourteen: Soulmates

*It Was Always You*

Lance McClain had known for a long time that Keith Kogane was his soulmate. He just had refused to accept it.

Lance had first known something was off after Keith had held him in his arms and helped him to the healing pod. When Keith had touched his hand there was a spark, a restless stirring in Lance, and yet at the same time he felt wholly content, like something was finally clicking into place, as cheesy as that was.

So Lance buried those feelings.

Lance had finally found out ‘what was wrong’ when he got stuck in the elevator with Keith.

They had somehow managed to work together for once, using each other to climb up the elevator shaft to the vent, only to tumble down a shoot into the pool room.

Lance squawked as he landed on something hard and yet soft. Opening his eyes he found Keith staring at him. He was in Keith lap. And even worse than that, Keith’s bare chest was pressed to his.

And that's when the glowing happened.

Lance watched as Keith’s chest, right where his heart was, glowed a soft blue. Lance’s own chest was glowing a warm red. And Lance felt his heart pounding in his chest, faster and faster, almost painfully.

Then, right when he thought he really would kill over and die, the glow muted to a soft purple, and Lance heard it. His heart syncing to Keith’s, beating as one, telling him that he had met his soulmate.

Lance peeled himself away from an equally wide-eyed Keith and turned away.

“This didn’t happen,” Lance said.

“Lance…”

“No. This didn’t happen okay?” Lance walked out towards the door, “We never mention this again.”

Lance thought he heard a soft “okay.”

After that it took awhile for things to be normal again. Not that flying giant robot cats in space was at all normal. But still, it took time for the two of them to not be at each other’s throats, to not enter a room and give the other sideways glances.

True to his word, Lance never talked about their soul bonding. And For Keith part, he didn’t either. But still, Lance would find himself standing next to Keith, gravitating toward him, like Keith was his own personal fucking sun that he orbited.

In some ways it was almost funny. Lance had almost given up on having a soulmate, thinking that out here in space he would never find them. But the universe just loved to be ironic like that.

Lance started throwing himself at every other alien he could. He did not like Keith, he would not like him. There was no way that stupid mullet and him were soulmates. Lance was not going to fall in love with him just because they were fated to do so, even when a little voice in the back of his head whined at him that he had always had a small thing for Keith.

When they lost Shiro and Keith had taken the black lion, that’s when everything had changed between them. Lance had helped Keith to find his place as the leader, and perhaps had found his own place by Keith’s side.

But again, Lance was not going to think about it. Even if he could still feel Keith heart beating in sync with his whenever they were close.

But then Shiro came back and they had one too many paladins. And Lance found himself outside Keith’s door, and then talking to him. They avoided private conversations. This wasn’t supposed to happen. But why could Keith always bring him comfort?

And then Keith was gone.

And Lance had to question why?

Every day without Keith seemed to tear open his chest just a little more. It had been easy to pretend when he wasn’t there, but now? Not so much. Lance got tired of flirting, tired of pretending he was happy, tired of his crush on Allura, being stepped all over as she hung out with Lotor. Lance was just tired, and without Keith, more alone than he had ever known.

The gang was hanging out in the common room, getting ready to play another game of monsters and mana, when Allura asked the question.

“What are human soul bonds like?”

“It’s like finding your other half,” Shiro said quietly. “Your chests glow and you heart syncs up with the other person.”

“It’s similar in Altean, actually most planets I’ve studied, have similar bonds. Still, there are many that don’t have soul bonds, or don’t have romantic bonds at least.”

Lance squirmed awkwardly in his chair.

“Scientists hypothesis that roughly forty percent of the population does not have a soulmate, though many others say that those simply were not lucky enough to find their match.” Pidge said, “About twenty percent are platonic bonds. It’s common enough.”

Allura sat forward interested, “How do you know the difference?”

“You just do,” Lance said. He snapped his mouth closed and sat up. Everyone looked at him, “I mean that’s what I’m told, that’s what my mama says.”

Pidge and Hunk nod, both of their parents soulmates too. Lance lets out a sigh of relief.

That night Lance feels a pain in his chest. He’d been asking himself why he ached, why it hurt, but he knew, he knew who left a void in him and he knew that be it fate or his own stupidly, somewhere along the way he really did fall for Keith.

Keith comes back. And stupidly, dumbly, idiotically, Lance thinks that everything will be different. Of course it isn’t, he had rejected Keith, hadn’t seen him in almost a year, of course he would just ignore and avoid him.

But he can’t ignore how much better he feels when he sees Keith again, when he can feel their hearts in sync.

With Keith so close and so much going on, Lance is just trying to make it through, day by day. They fight Lotor, but when they come back through the void with him he disappears. They use the castle as a bomb and Lance feels like he’s losing his home again. They drift through space, they get home, they fight Sendak.

And Lance wakes up in the hospital covered in sores and scars and bruises. His breath hitches, he can’t feel Keith. Where is Keith?

“Honey?” His mom says seeing the panicked look on her son’s face.

“Where’s Keith… is he alright is he…”

She reaches over the bed and takes Lances hand, “It’s alright sweetheart. Everyone’s okay.” Lance settles back against the pillow. “I’m going to call the nurse, okay honey?”

“Okay,” Lance echos letting his mom comb through his bangs, allowing himself to be comforted.

That night, after his parents went back to the family apartment, after the nurses had retired to their stations, after the lights were dimmed and the moon came out, Lance swung his legs over the bed and walked out of his room.

He listened to the almost silent padding of his feet as he walked down the hall, reading the little room plates as he went. Keith was in the room farthest from his own.

He just needed to see him. Just to confirm.

Lance opened the door.

Dark eyes met him, questioning eyes.

“Uh can I come in? Lance asked already sliding the door behind him.

“What’s up?” Keith rasped. He looked so vulnerable, so unlike Keith. He looked the way Lance felt. But Keith eyes were strong and stoney.

“I wanted to see you. To apologize.”

“What for?”

“We said some shit out there, to each other.”

“You mean when we were stuck in space?”

Lance nodded.

“Lance we were all space mad.”

“I know. Still. I regret it. I’m sorry.”

“Me too. I’m sorry for what I said.” Keith touched his head, “I shouldn’t have gone off on Allura like that, I need to apologize to her too.”

“Yeah.”

“I’m sorry I went after her...I know how you feel about her and I just—“

Lance cut in, “How do you think I feel about Allura?” Lance inched towards the bed. Maybe it was because he was tired, maybe it was because he was knocked up on pain meds, maybe it was because Keith’s eyes, almost glowing in the moonlight, did things to him.

“You…” Keith trailed off making a gesture.

Lance simply clenched his mouth and shook his head. “No, Keith no.”

Keith let out a stuttering breath as Lance sat on the bed, his back turned away.

“You said that out there. The leaving thing, that I left you...do you want to talk about it?”

Lance looked at his bare feet dangling off the bed.

“You tried to leave again. I told you to leave and you just...you tired to run off.”

“Well yeah...I thought it was best. I thought I was…we were all a little loopy at that point”

Lance turned catching Keith eyes, “What did you think?”

“I thought I was just hurting you. That it was better if we were apart.”

“Keith,” Lance breathed, “Why would you think that? Why would you do that?”

Keith tried to shift away despite the fact he was attached to IVs and wires, “Because…” he looked at his hands, “I thought. You told me.”

“I’m sorry.”

Keith eyes, now hard, met his, “Did you not mean what you said back then. When we. When that happened.”

“I did but…”

“But?” Closer now, so close Lance could see the purple in those eyes.

“But I love you.”

Keith sucked in a breath, looking away, looking for an escape, looking for answers.

“What do you mean?”

“What I said,” Lance said now agitated, “I don’t know, I just somehow I fell in love with you.”

“I…” Keith self-consciously scratched at his heart, “Please don’t play with my emotions Lance. Please. Just stop.”

Lance voice cracked, “Do you…”

“What does it matter?”

Lance grabbed Keith hand holding it to his own heart. “It just matters okay? It hurts without you. I’m supposed to be with you.”

“That’s just the soulbond talking.”

Lance leaned forward to look in Keith eyes one hand still entangled with Keith’s, the other on Keith’s far side by his hip, caging him in.

“Keith I didn’t fall for you because you’re my soulmate. I fell for you despite that.”

“Do you know how much you hurt me?”

“I’m sorry.”

“You played with my feelings Lance. I thought you knew I… that I liked you, and that you got a kick out of using that against me.”

“I didn’t Keith. I didn’t mean to hurt you.”

“And then you said I was the future.”

“I was just being my stupid selfish self, wrapped up in my own mind, God, I’m such a horrible person.”

Keith gave Lance a startled look. He untangled his hand from Lance’s.

Lance felt something inside him crack, “Okay...right. Yeah I don’t deserve you anyway. Not the way I treated you. I’ll just get out of your hair then.”

A hand shot out and grabbed his hand, “No you aren’t I… just give me a damn minute.” Keith closed his eyes and took a deep breath.

He threaded his hand with Lance’s, looking at the knuckles, tracing them with his thumb. Lance shivered. Nails dragged up his arm, “I’ve liked you for so long.”

Hitched breath “Still?” Lance asked hovering over Keith. Could he dare to hope?

But in Keith’s eyes the walls were crumbling and Lance knew the answer before Keith echoed it against his lips.

Lance didn’t know who moved first, only that there was the press of lips against his, warm and chapped and just so right. Lance dragged Keith’s hair behind his ear off his face, careful of the bandages, but Keith wasn’t careful as he pulled Lance closer to him.

Their chests met, their hearts aligned, glowing soft purple as a reminder of what they were. And Lance swore that he could taste against Keith's lips that it didn’t matter who they were, or where they were, what timeline they were in, or what bodies they inhabited, that they would always be right for each other. That they would always find each other.

Two opposites completing the other, but somehow finding that they weren’t that different after all.

Lance sighed into Keith. A few more blissful moments before they pulled away.

The bed was too small for the two of them, but Lance squeezed himself into Keith’s side, Keith settling his head atop Lance’s.

“When was it for you,” Keith asked, fingers dragging along Lance’s spine.

“Awhile. Like bonding moment awhile ago.”

“Same, that’s when it started.”

“Started?” Lance chuckled.

“I don’t even think you can begin to comprehend how much my heart grew for you. What you put me through.”

Lance rolled onto Keith, nudging their chests together, letting their hearts align. A soft purple glow, letting them know that their souls were aligned in this moment, “I think I can take a guess.”

Keith dragged a hand through Lances bangs. “You don’t get to forget this time.”

“Wouldn’t dream of it Mullet,” Lance said.

He kissed Keith slow, steady, like this was a fragile new thing. In a lot of ways it was, in many it wasn’t.

Then Lance settles back into Keith’s side careful of the wires and bruises. Keith rested one hand on the back of Lances neck, Lance dragged Keith’s hand to his chest. A physical reminder that neither of them were letting go.

They woke up to a very agitated nurse who had found Lance missing and almost called the police. But they just smiled dopely at each other and were soon forgiven.

Chapter Text

Klance Au 2019
February 15, 2018
Day Fifteen: College

*Alpha Chi Omgod*

Keith made it a point of not visiting Shiro at the frat house. Frat boys were dumb jock-y bros who listened to bad music and just wanted someone to fuck. Keith had decided that Shiro alone was the exception.

Keith knew deep down that this wasn’t really a fair assessment, but he had dealt with one to many of the stupid guys in his classes and he would rather not deal with them in his free time.

But here he was standing outside of Shiro’s frat house, a large brick house littered with trash from a recent party. They were going to get lunch and meet up with Shiro boyfriend. After two years together, Keith was finally warming up to the guy, but Shiro still organized these little get togethers. Keith didn’t hate Adam by any means, he knew Adam loved Shiro, he just had a hard time with new people.

Just as Keith was about to text Shiro to come down, a guy with a giant bag bumbled out the door and right into Keith.

The guy took a careful step back, hands on Keith’s shoulders. Keith had to keep himself from cringing away from the touch. The guy was tall, or at least as tall as he was, with warm tanned skin and the bluest eyes he had ever seen.

“Woah, there, sorry my dude,” The guy said, his voice as warm as his smile. “You aren’t from our house. Who you looking for?” The guy adjusted his snapback, an bright orange thing that clashed with his skin that was probably adorned with the school’s logo. All his clothes were orange and grey, his bag too, even the lacrosse stick in his hand was that god awful orange. Oh he was that kind of guy. They guy that had school spirit. Still…Keith couldn’t look away from him.

The guy looked at him and Keith remembered that he had been asked a question, “Uh Shiro…”

Lance stepped into the house and put a hand to mouth and yelled, “Shiro your cute boyfriend is here!”

There was a rustle from upstairs and Lance smirked at Keith and wiggled his eyebrows before walking out across the lawn.

“I’m not...hey--” Keith started to say. Keith didn’t know if he should be agitated at the guy’s overly friendly, touchy, nature or if he was flattered by the flirty boy. He was definitely embarrassed by his own lack of speech. And confused. Very confused at what his heart was doing.

But the guy just looked back and threw Keith a wink, firmly shutting him up.

Before Keith could explain, the guy was gone and Shiro was coming down the stairs.

“Hey you aren’t my cute boyfriend.”

Keith rolled his eyes, “Thank god for that.”

***

Keith found out that the guy’s name was Lance. And in Shiro’s words, ‘he played around but he was a good guy you could rely on.’ Shiro didn’t know him personally, so Keith couldn’t get much more out of his brother. He also didn’t want to ask more in case Shiro figured out his true intentions.

But Shiro must have know something was up because here they was a week later at the frat house surrounded by a group of guys Keith didn’t know, getting ready to play dungeons and dragons. Shiro said that Lance and his friends played D&D weekly and that they always invited Shiro to play, and Keith had jumped at the chance.

Everyone had just introduced themselves. Keith was sitting between Hunk who was part of the fraternity, and Pidge who was very much not, as they silently judged as other guys filtered in and out of the kitchen.

Keith had always been impulsive, but now he was truly paying the price. He didn’t want to be surrounded by this group of strangers. He didn’t want to be playing this dumb game. He didn’t want to be sitting at this slightly sticky table unable to say anything, but here he was sitting across from probably the goddamn most attractive human being Keith had ever laid eyes on, unable to say anything.

The guy, Lance, smirked at him, looking up from under his long lashes, before snatching Keith’s character sheet away, “Let me just double check this for you mullet,” the guy scanned the page before raising an eyebrow at him, “A barbarian, really?”

“Well what are you,” Keith bit back.

“Normally I’m like this cool ninja assassin guy,”

“No you’re not,” Pidge grunted, “You’re a thief.”

“I am not! Pike is much more than a thief,” he pushed Pidge and turned back to Keith, “Anyway, since we’re doing a one-shot, I’m going to try out a bard today.” Lance smiled and turned back to Hunk, “Did you decide who’s going to dm yet?” Then back to Keith, "You picked a good week for a one-shot session, our dm’s out of town.”

“I’m doing it,” Pidge said with an eager grin.

“Oh no. That’s terrifying,” Lance said.

From there the game started and Lance never stopped talking. Pidge and Hunk good naturedly rolled their eyes at him, most likely use to this behavior, but Keith didn’t know what to think.

If he was honest, Keith had been ready for Lance to act exactly the way he thought he would and be utterly disappointed. In a lot of ways Lance was what he expected, loud, cocky, slightly annoying. But in a lot of ways he wasn't. He was genuine and nerdy and Keith could tell how hard he was trying to make Keith and Shiro feel comfortable and have a good time. Plus he had the cutest laugh he had ever heard, with a little snort on the end of it.

Lance drew Keith into the conversation, into a fair few arguments too. But all in all he was more than Keith had ever anticipated him being.

“This was really interesting guys. Thanks for letting us play,” Shiro said.

“No problem! I always seek to teach people about the fun of D&D. You had fun too right Keith?”

“It was interesting I guess.”

A snort, “Rude.”

“No,” Keith said, “It was fun really. I just… it’s a lot.”

“Calm down Keithy boy. I’m just teasing.”

Pidge and Hunk excused themselves to go get dinner and at the same moment Shiro’s phone started to ring, leaving Keith and Lance alone.

“Er. I should probably get back to my dorm. Homework and stuff.”

Lance sprung forward clasping Keith’s arm, “Wait. You said you were an astronomy major right?”

“Yeah?”

“Do you think you could help me with an astronomy problem, really quick,” Lance said biting his lip and Keith instantly knew it was going to be hard to ever say no to this guy.

“Didn’t you say you were a physics major? What could you possibly need my help with.”

“Physics is easy. But this… I can’t visualize it and this question is driving me nuts. Please?”

Keith really couldn’t say no to those shining eyes, “Fine.”

They walked up the stairs to Lance’s room. There were a few snapbacks and papers scattered around but it was a lot cleaner than Keith had anticipated. “You have your own room,” Keith remarked.

“Yeah. Seniority and all,” Lance said cocking that grin again.

“You’re a senior?”

“Naw. Just nobody wanted to put up with me, so I got my own room. I get it, I can be kind of a lot.”

Keith rolled his eyes, “I’ll say.”

“Hey!”

It was now Keith’s turn to smirk, “I’m teasing.”

Lance laughed, “Why haven’t I seen you around?”

“Uh. I don’t really hang out I guess. I don’t really have friends…” Keith tapered off thinking he had said too much.

“Why?” Lance said his eyes wide.

“People find me intimidating, that’s what Shiro says.”

“Really? I think you’re pretty funny.”

Now realising how small the room was and how close he was to Lance, Keith stepped toward the desk, “So, er, where’s that problem?”

Lance walked over, again closing the distance between them, grabbed a book and gave it to Keith. They worked over the problem for a few minutes. Keith may have forgotten to breath. Lucky Lance didn’t really seem as bad at it as he had said he was.

“You’re pretty smart,” Keith said.

Lance was sitting at his desk now, his chair facing the wrong way, his elbows leaning against the back, “I get that a lot.”

“Shut up,” Keith said, “But seriously though you are, but like, why physics?

“I want to be a physics professor. I’ve had one to many bad teachers, and while that turns most people off from school I want to make a difference.”

“That’s actually pretty cool,” Keith said leaning against the side of the desk. His voice was low and raspy. Crap he had just used his flirty voice, “I had a really crap physics teacher here. Iverson.”

“I know.”

“You know?”

Lance looked up at him shyly “You were in the same class as me.”

“Really?”

“Yeah.”

“I don’t remember you.”

“Probably because you were paying attention like a good little boy.” Lance leaned closer to Keith.

“What and you weren’t mister space physicist?”

A light blush bloomed over Lance’s cheeks, “There were more interesting things to pay attention to in class.”

And then Lance was leaning closer until he could feel his breath against his neck.

Closer and closer. Until his eyes were closing. Until--

“Keith are you still here?” Shiro's voice sounded down the hall.

“I’m in here,” Keith said. Jesus christ he had almost kissed Lance and the door had been open. Jesus Christ he had almost kissed Lance!

Keith waved goodbye to Lance who was giving him a very odd look.

Keith and Shiro walked down and out of the house and Keith was just about to get on his motorcycle and leave, when a voice sounded from the house, “Wait!”

Keith jerked towards the house to where Lance was sprinting down the lawn. He shoved his hand out to Keith. He was looking down, his confident look all gone, “Here.”

Keith grabbed at the small piece of paper.

“It’s my number.”

“In case you need help again?” Keith questioned.

Lance reddened and Keith swore he saw disappointment, “Yeah.” Their eyes met before Lance mumbled something about homework and sprinted back to the house.

Shiro, eyes filled with amusement turned to Keith, “So what did you think of the gang.”

“Cool,” he said.

“And Lance,” Shiro said grinning.

“Lance is infuriating,” Keith said.

“And you think he’s cute right?”

“So cute.” Keith leaned his head against the front of the bike and groaned. Too cute.

Shiro chuckled at him and Keith flipped him off before leaving.

***

When Keith got home he texted Lance. He instantly received a reply back. And Keith’s heart stopped.

There was Lance wearing his black leather jacket, the red attached hoodie propped on his head. And he just looked so good. From that smirk, to the peek of his collarbone to the dotting of freckles. He looked too damn good.

You left something, the text read.

Wanna meet up again? Keith texted back. I’m normally at the library tomorrow at around four.

You studying?

Yeah.

Cool. I’ll hang out then too if that’s okay. I got an essay I gotta work on.

Okay cool.

They met up a few times after that. Mostly in the library to study. Lance was a lot more studious than Keith thought he would be. And slowly Keith’s light crush became all encompassing. Lance was somehow a mix between an obnoxious theater kid, a dumb bro, and a nerdy naruto freak. It was a lot to take in for Keith. But Lance was entertaining and charming and they just got along.

It wasn’t that Keith was shy or hated people, he really just had no idea what he was supposed to say, self-conscious of what he did and how he should act. But it was different with Lance. He didn’t feel stupid, he didn’t feel like Lance was doing all the work either. They just worked. Lance brought something out in Keith that shocked him.

They were completely different, Lance being a loud sport watching party guy, Keith more into reading books and drawing or riding his motorcycle, but Lance always got Keith’s dry humor and they liked the same snacks and tv shows and they just worked. Even if they were just study friends.

Keith had seen Lance flirt with almost every girl they encountered, from baristas to girls at the bus stop. In a lot of ways it was infuriating, and Keith was ready to give up his feelings for Lance, but then he would do something cute or flirty to Keith and he didn’t know how to react. Yeah. Keith was in deep.

“Come to the party this week,” Lance whined poking Keith’s cheek.

Keith snorted.

“Please.”

“Why do you want me to go to this goddamn party so badly?”

Lance’s head was currently on the desk, his eyes half lidded looking up at Keith and just doing way too many things to Keith’s poor head and heart, “It’ll be more fun if you go.”

“Fine.”

***

Keith had almost chickened out. But he was stupid enough to tell Shiro and Shiro was not letting him out of it, telling him he needed to bond and act like a regular college kid.

So here he was, Keith, fake bad boy, gay hermit extraordinaire, at a party with drunk frat guys and dancing neon lights. It wasn’t that Keith didn’t like to party or dance or anything. If he got a few drinks in him he could act as stupid and crazy as anyone else. He just didn't feel comfortable with this crowd, where he didn’t know the music or like the liquer, and he didn’t recognize the people around him.

Keith shifted closer towards the steady beat because if he knew Lance, he would be at the center of it all. And Keith was right. There he was, in one of his stupid snapbacks, a loose tank top and ungodly salmon colored shorts, bouncing and just having too great of a time.

Keith was about to turn around and leave when Lance caught his eye, “Keith!” Keith could just hear over the music before Lance tumbled through the crowd and into his arms. “Hi.”

“Hey,” Keith said “Wow. You’re drunk.”

Lance leaned into Keith, his lips against his ear, “Not that drunk.” His voice, deep and musical, went right to Keith’s pants. Lance hugged him tighter.

“Clingy drunk.”

Lance pulled away and pouted. “Not drunk. If I was drunk you would know. Just tipsy.”

Keith laughed and let Lance lead him to the bar. Together they did a shot and then Lance was leading Keith back to the dancing. “Come on pretty boy.”

With the shots of tequila warming his stomach Keith felt his fliter slipping away, “You think I’m pretty?” He said looking up at Lance.

And Lance looked at him, so many feeling crossing his face, he leaned into Keith, “Not pretty. You’re hot.” Pain shot across Lance’s eyes, “I mean. I…”

Keith loosely tugged on Lance’s shirt collar, “I think you’re hot too.”

Lance leaned into Keith, close, hot breath almost against his mouth, electricity seeming to take the space between them, “Wanna get out of here?” Lance asked their lips almost brushing.

“Yeah,” Keith smiled.

When they reached Lance’s door, Keith pushed him up against the wall, placing his lips against Lance’s, unable to wait any longer. It was a little sloppy at first, but Lance tugged him closer, tilting his head until their mouths slotted.

“Wanted. Wanted to kiss you so long,” Lance said against his mouth. “Been trying to do this since I. Since I met you.”

Keith reached behind Lance for the door and they fumbled inside, Lance now pinned against his bed.

“God. Me too. So long,” Keith said pressing their bodies tighter against one another. Hitched breath.

Keith couldn’t stop his hands, dragging up arms, combing through soft hair cupping that jaw. Lance licked into Keith’s mouth with a moan. He tugged at Keith’s hair and Keith groaned into him.

Lance reached forward playing with the hem of Keith’s shirt, brushing against the sensitive skin there, sending heat flaming up and down his spine. “We doing this?” He said cocking a brow at Keith.

“God yes,” Keith said, chasing Lance’s beautiful mouth.

***
It had been almost too good. Way too good. It was heat, and skin and muttered curses, and laughs. There was a little bit of fumbling but also moans and it just felt right. It was surprisingly soft. As they took their time, as they felt each other out, Lance was incredibly sensitive and attune to Keith and Keith tried to share that vulnerability back with him.

They were now tucked under the sheets, Keith running a hand up and down Lance’s spine.

“Hey,” Lance said snuggling into Keith’s side.

Keith looked down, those blue eyes still lighting up somehow in the dark, “Hey.”

“You don’t regret it do you?”

“Do you?”

“No.”

“I don’t either.”

“So…” Lance bit his lip.

“So?”

“Jeez. You don’t make this easy Keith. So...would you do it again?”

Keith shifted uncomfortably. What exactly did Lance want? “I mean. I like you…”

“There sounds like there's a but in there.”

“What? No. I like you. I want to…”

“Yes?”

“Maybe date you?”

Lance pouted, “You don’t have to make it sound so painful.”

“What? No Lance. I really want to date you.”

Lance smiled and tucked himself back into Keith’s chest. “Okay good.”

Keith laughed. He poked Lance’s side. “So?”

“So.” Lance snorted. “You’re my boyfriend.”

“Wait really?”

“What? Did you think I just wanted to fuck?”

“I mean…”

“Keith Kogane!” Lance put a hand on each side of Keith’s head, “I may flirt, but that doesn't mean I’m not serious about you.”

Keith couldn’t keep the smile of his face. “Then kiss me.”

Lance snorted again, his nose wrinkling, “You’re going to be a handful aren't you.”

“I think that’s you.”

Lance leaned forward and kissed Keith and Keith knew that his life was going to be so much brighter with Lance in it.

Chapter Text

Klance Au Month
February 16, 2019
Day Sixteen: Thunderpike

*Cat Got Your Tongue?*

In the magical land of Altea, beyond the Whispering Mountains, past the Coranic Wood, nestled in a valley of juniberrys was a royal village. And in that village lived a young man named Pike.

Who was currently stuck in a tree.

Normally an agile climber, Pike may or may not have climbed the tree to get a look inside the castle for a peek at the beautiful princess that was supposed to live inside. But now he was clutching at branch that could barely hold his weight, very, very, far away from the ground.

Pike tried to shift his weight but it was no use. The branch creaked, threatening to send him tumbling. His ears twitched, hearing distant footsteps, and in a last attempt he called out, “Help.”

“Well well, what do we have here?” A deep voice called.

Pike looked down to see none other than Thunderstorm, or Thunder, as Pike liked to call him, mostly because Thunderstorm hated it. He was dressed, as always, in his ragged barbarian style clothes, his enormous sword against his shoulder, his long ragged hair held in a half ponytail.

Through many strange circumstances Pike and Thunder had ended up on different quests together. Always at each other’s throats, but somehow able to get the job done when they needed to. And if Pike was honest with himself, he may have seeked out Thunder on occasion. The guy was trustworthy as well as infuriating.

“Oh no, not you,” Pike said.

“I’m sorry, what was that? Sounds like you don’t need my help.”

“Hey wait come back.”

“Say please.”

Pike was about to tell him to shove off when he heard the branch crack, “Okay, okay, please please.”

“Let go. I’ll catch you.”

“What? No way. No.”

Pike clung to the branch more tightly. And then he heard it. A crack.

He let out a squeaking yell as he pitched forward, falling, falling, falling.

Something caught him. He looked up, dark eyes meeting his way to close. Way, way to close. He felt his heartbeat quicken.

“Hey,” Thunder said.

Pike could feel the rumble of Thunder’s voice in his chest. He felt his face heat, his hair standing on end.

Thunder smirked, “What, cat got your tongue?”

“You smell like a dog.”

Thunder dropped him on the ground. “You’re welcome.”

Pike scoffed but was quick to stand and inched his fingers to a large bulge in Thunder’s pack. “What have we got here.” Pike said swiftly drawing out a letter with the Queen’s seal.

Thunder snatched the letter back, “Nothing for you to worry about, thief.”

“It’s a quest isn’t it?”

“How did you know?”

Pike rolled his eyes and smirked, “Please I can smell money a mile away. Let me help. Split the cash.”

“Yeah. No.”

“Why not?” Pike whined his tail twitching.

“Because whenever we do anything together you get me in trouble.”

“Get you in... I keep you out of trouble. Has there been a quest we’ve failed?”

Thunder hesitated, “No.”

Pike swung an arm around Thunder’s shoulder, “Then onward my good man. The money awaits.”

“Is that all you think about?” Thunder pouted.

Dark eyes met Pike’s, “Not at all,” he said with a smile. “Not in the least.”

Chapter Text

Klance Au Month
February 17, 2019
Day Seventeen: Celebrities

*Celebrity Is as Celebrity Does*

Keith slipped out of his sports car, tossing he keys to the attendant of his apartment complex. Like always, there was a large crowd of paparazzi, ready to swarm him.

“Mr. Kogane. Mr. Kogane. Do you have a rebuttal to what Lance McClain said about you yesterday.”

The feud between pop artist Lance McClain and country/ R&B star Keith Kogane seemed to be the only thing the paparazzi ever cared about, nevermind the music they produced. Keith scoffed, but his bodyguard was there to fend them off.

Still someone tired slip past, “Any comments Mr. Kogane?”

Keith looked over the top of his sunglasses, “What has the little shit said this time?” Keith asked.

Keith listened to the reporter stamer before rambling off a load of childish insults that Lance had apparently said. Keith didn’t need to listen, he knew the jabs that were made.

“There’s no rebuttal to make,” Keith smirked, “Lance McClain is nothing more than a selfish child who makes cheap music with no personality or taste.”

With that Keith walked into his building, bidding his bodyguard a good evening and took the elevator to the penthouse.

He was always getting asked stupid questions like this, and Keith loved nothing more to play along. But by far the biggest question he was asked, “If you hate Mr. McClain so much? Why do you live in the same apartment complex? Surely there are other luxury apartments in LA?”

What they didn’t know was that there was a very specific reason he lived in this apartment. The reason being he had been dating Lance secretly for over five years almost before his career.
Keith unlocked the door of his flat, “Hey, I’m home.” His voice echoed into the living room. Keith followed the soft spanish music and the smell of something buttery to the kitchen.

The house always smelled good when Lance was cooking, or when he had lighted one of his stupid scented candles.

The penthouse was big, modern, airy, but over the years it had been cluttered with more and more things. Memorabilia from their respective careers. Their accolades lined the wall. Lance was currently in the middle of writing something new and the living room was a mess with papers and musical instruments.

But this was there home and you could see it in the little things: knitted blankets from Cuba, the snowglobes Keith had started collecting when on tour, photos of them and their families and friends.

Lance was quietly humming to the music as he chopped vegetables, his back turned. He had a little bit of bed-head, which meant he had probably just gotten up from a nap.

Keith patted Kosmo, who was waiting for scraps, as always, then slipped his arms around his boyfriend. Keith gently kissed the back of Lance’s neck. “Hey.”

Lance leaned back into him, but didn’t look up from his task, “Hi.”

Keith pulled the knife out of Lance’s hand and set it on the counter.

Lance turned and rolled his eyes, but wrapped his hands around Keith’s neck, “You’re late.”

“Yeah. The shoot took way too long. Plus the paparazzi. You know. The usual.”

Lance smirked, “What did you say about me this time?”

“Well,” Keith said pinching Lance’s side, “I had to say something to those remarks of yours. So I called you cheap.”

Lance squawked and pouted. But then Keith smiled and Lance melted against him.

Keith and Lance had at one time been publicly known as celebrity friends. Their relationship, even then, was kept on the down low.

The feud had started when some weird rumor had circled around about Keith and Lance fighting at a party. From there it was comical jokes poked at one another that the press had misinterpreted. After that, Lance came to Keith telling him that their album sales had increased. Lance had proclaimed if the press wanted a show, then why not give it to them. It was years into their relationship and at that point, they just didn’t care anymore about the stupid stuff. And hey, what was stirring up a little press. It didn’t do anyone but themselves harm.

The most amazing thing about the feud was that it kept their relationship private and out of the news. They weren’t planning on keeping it a secret forever, it was just for now.

Keith kissed Lance’s nose then pulled away and helped Lance set the table. He reached inside his jacket, fingering the little black box he had been carrying for weeks.

It was just for a little while.

***
Two Weeks Later

Lance had to keep himself from laughing. He was at the grocery store, picking up food for dinner, when he saw it. Every trashy magazine lined with photos of him and Keith.

Reading things like,

Marriage??!?! Secret Wedding!!?!?!

After years of feuding, these rivals decide to marry? Where did this decision come from? How long has the relationship going on? And will it last?

Keith and Lance a secret relationship????

When asked about his ring Lance confirms and says: HE’S ENGAGED TO KEITH KOGANE?!?!?!

Lance smiled and bought one of each.

Chapter Text

Klance AU month
February 18, 2019
Day Eighteen: Childhood Friends

*The Boy Who Lived Next Door*

Chapter One

Lance was late. Of course, he was late, It was his first real day of high school. Sure he was a sophomore, but freshman year didn’t count, especially since they kept the freshman in a separate building from everyone else. Today was the day he was going to fully reinvent himself, so of course things were going to go wrong. Of course nothing was going to work out.

Even though it was early morning, summer still clung in the air, creating a humid heat. Lance grabbed a snapback and tossed it on his head. Lance preferred autumn fashion with its long layers and comfy clothes, but he was going to have to settle for a t-shirt and shorts with his favorite pair of sneakers. It was still a good look, stylish, but not trying too hard, he just wished he hadn’t already worn this outfit so many times this summer at the student council meetings.

Getting ready quickly had always been a difficult task for Lance, but it was made even more difficult as he stepped around his hazardous room, messy with video games and clothes and his collection of astronomy books. Lance pawed through a crowded drawer, pulling at a light hoodie as he dashed out of his room.

Lance felt something tumblr out of the drawer.

There was a crash.

The cracking of glass.

Lance turned back. Apparently, his jacket, an old red thing he hadn’t worn in years, which had been stuffed haphazardly in his drawer, had been wrapped around a picture frame.

Lance sighed and walked back into his room. He flipped the now cracked frame over.

The picture had been taken almost five years ago. Lance had forgotten that he had stuffed it in the bottom of his drawer. Lance carefully pulled out the picture, a half smile on his lips.

The picture was of Lance, small, practically the size of a peanut, his arm draped around a boy with dark scruffy hair. Lance had a wide smile on his face. The other boy, who wasn’t really ever big on pictures, was caught in a moment of pure bliss, his eyes catching the light, a soft look on his face.

Lance had loved this photo. It used to sit on his desk. But over the years it hurt more and more to look at it, until it ended up in the bottom of a drawer, forgotten.

“Hey Lance. If you want a ride to school you better get your butt up here,” Lance’s cousin Adam called down the stairs to the basement.

“Coming,” Lance called back.

Lance took one last look at the photo and stuffed it and the broken frame into the trash. He threw the jacket back in the drawer.

Lance ran up the stairs to the kitchen. He reached into the fridge and shook the milk carton. It was almost empty, so with a shrug, Lance took the carton and chugged it. Then he took two frozen Eggo waffles and stuffed them in his mouth.

“Lance Serrano-McClain. You do not drink from the carton,” A voice yelled.. He could already feel the chancla as he turned, his mouth chipmunked by the waffle. His mother reigned over the counter, passing out eggs to his father who was reading the newspaper.

“He’s a growing boy Evelyn,” his father said with a chuckle, “He needs to put on more weight for the swim team.

Lance hoped he hadn’t stopped growing. After years of being tormented by his siblings Lance had finally, FINALLY, had the Serrano-McClain growth spurt, putting him at six feet, even with Marco, and towering over over most of the Sophomore class.

Lance put on his puppy dog eyes before attempting to swallow. “Yeah Mama. I finished it anyway.”

His mother looked down on him, a woman of terror and love, “That doesn’t mean he can’t have manners,” Lance’s mom said shaking her head.

Adam honked the horn from the driveway.

“Well I’m going to be late,” Lance said dashing toward the door.

Lance kissed his mother and father before grabbing his backpack and rushing out the door.

“Don’t forget, Veronica is skyping us this afternoon so everyone needs to come home early.”

“Okay, love you mom.”

The last one in the car, Lance was stuck in the worst seat, squashed between Rachel and Allura his long legs having nowhere to go.

“Hey Marco, switch with me, I get car sick.”

“Nope,” Marco called, not looking up from his phone.

Adam checked for seat belts before pulling down the driveway.

Something caught his eyes, he reached over Rachel, who squawked at him, and rolled the window down to peer further down the street. Sure enough, there was a moving truck in the driveway of their neighbor’s house.

“Guess someone’s finally moving in.”

Rachel wrestled Lance off her.

“But there wasn’t a for sale sign, was there?” Marco asked.

Lance shrugged. “Hey turn this song up,” he called to Adam. Being ignored by the cautious driver, Lance reached forward and turned the dial. The rest of the car began to sing or argue, as was custom when a song came on.

Lance looked over his shoulder to get another look at the moving van and the empty house.

***
I was three years old when Keith Kogane moved in next door. It was almost my birthday. I remember the warm summer sun on the back of my neck as I splashed in my kiddie pool on the front lawn. The distant sound of crickets and wind rustling through the trees. Rachel trying to dunk my head under water as Veronica yelled at us in Spanish.

A moving truck had pulled up the driveway next to us, the old Millar Mansion, as it was called, even though it wasn’t that much bigger than any of the other houses in the neighborhood. The three of us stopped and stared as two adults got out of the truck and walked up to the house, two boys, one not much older than me, trailing behind them.

The boy looked at us, I waved. He didn’t wave back but darted forward to his mother, a stuffed hippo clutched in his arms.

They moved their stuff quickly into the house. I watched them from my bedroom window, even after they had finished.

The family wasn’t like ours. They didn't make a sound. Still I watched for signs of life, waiting until the house lights were turned on, glowing against the dark backdrop of the woods behind the house.

The next day Mama was dragging me along with an apple crumble to introduce ourselves to the neighbors. Keith hide behind his mother, much like I was. Keith’s mom was scary and huge, not at all soft like my own mother.

I hated Keith from the moment I met him. He was much bigger than me and had hair like a girl, and he was wearing a ridiculously large hoodie, scrunched up to his elbows. Plus he was always glaring at me.

I silently begged my mom for us to leave, but my worst fears were coming true, she seemed to be getting along with the large scary woman, and when my mom moved to sit down out on the back porch with her, I became fully aware that I was going to be forced to socialize with Keith.

After that we were always being pushed together. I saw Keith everyday at daycare, and since my mom literally ran it out of our house, I couldn’t skip out. I saw him at the pool, the library, the park, I had playdates with him on the weekends. We did everything begrudgingly together, sometimes in matching outfits. But Keith made it very clear that he didn’t like me, and he knew I didn’t like him.

We didn’t become best friends, or even friends until I was five…

***
Adam parked in his regular spot next to an ugly green prius, Matt Holt’s prius.

The five of them shuffled out of the car, Matt who was grabbing his stuff from the trunk, high fived Lance and yelled, “Yo. It’s the Mc-Clan. What up guys.”

Adam went to go make small talk with Matt, Marco and the girls heading towards the school building. Lance walked over to his friend Pidge. The girl was currently scrolling through her phone, a coffee in hand, looking to all the world like it was five in the morning and not eight.

Lance picked her up and swung her around, “Pidgey omg I haven’t seen you all summer.”

“Put me down,” She cried clawing at Lance, “Put me the fuck down Lance.”

Lance chuckled putting his friend down.

“And I saw you last week.”

The a big voice boomed, “PIDGE, ah man I haven’t seen you in forever,” Before their friend Hunk practically sprinted over and pulled the three of them into a hug.

“Can you guys stop! I literally saw you the whole summer.”

Lance snorted.

“Are you kidding. You barely left your cave,” Hunk said, finally letting them go. “Video games and Facetime don’t count.”

“We even tried Hunk’s famous cookies and you wouldn’t leave.”

“And I would like to be there in my bed right now. So if you know what’s best for you, you’ll leave me alone until I wake up,” Pidge pouted.

Lance and Hunk laughed, their friend could probably punch their lights out, but she was also just adorably grumpy.

The three of them walked toward the front doors.

Even though this was their first time really entering the high school campus Lance and Hunk had a lot of people reaching out with “good mornings” and handshakes and highfives. Being chosen as the Sophomore student representatives was paying off. Lance’s gang, friends since middle school, had always been floaters. Not really popular, not really unpopular. They had friends, but they didn’t belong to one distinct clique.

But Lance had set a plan in action freshman year, and so far everything was working. It wasn’t that Lance was fake per say, he just liked being liked. So he joined the student council, he made the swim team. He got into the honors classes. And as he finger-gunned and flirted and waved, Lance was happy with his decision, to make something of himself, to be the big high school hot shot, to be the class clown, to be the friendly guy who knew everyone and everyone knew.

Lance felt a hand on his shoulder, a familiar voice murmur in his ear, “You look good.”

Lance knew immediately who it was and tried to keep himself from frowning as he turned to face the student council president, “I wore this outfit at least five times this summer Lotor.”

The tall senior smirked down at Lance, “Doesn’t mean you don’t look good.”

Lance rolled his eyes and took a step back away from Lotor..

“You coming to the party Friday right? The whole student council is coming.”

“Maybe. If Rachel and Allura want to,” Lance said.

That made Lotor uncomfortable for a second, but he soon pulled off a smile and made his way down the hall, “See you later Lance,” he said with a wave.

Lance felt an unpleasant shiver make its way down his spine.

“What the fresh fuck was that,” Pidge said elbowing Lance.

“Let’s just say my flirting may have gotten myself in trouble this summer.”

“I’ll say,” Hunk snorted.

“Well I hope you learned your lesson then,” Pidge said.

Lance hadn’t meant for it to happen. Lance flirted with everyone at the student council meetings, heck Lance flirted with everyone in general. Lance had just become a little too attracted to the fact that someone flirted back with him. But then Lotor had gotten a little too touchy feely and didn’t seem to able to take a hint to lay off, and now Lance was stuck with his leering.

In other words it was entirely his fault but also not at all, and he was unwilling to really confront Lotor and fix it.

Lance shrugged and made his way to the gym for his first period, wasn’t anything a little swimming couldn’t make better.

***
Friday night was parent date night. Which meant Adam was babysitting, which meant “if you try to sneak out, you’ll get in more trouble with me than you would with mom and dad.”

But as smart as Adam was, as strict as he was, he was also oblivious, and once Lance started got a space documentary with him, he was out cold on the couch.

Lance texted Rachel and Allura, who were currently upstairs doing “homework,” the code word for getting ready for a rager.

Lance to Allura [9:09]: Okay. He’s out. You guys leave now, and I’ll be there in a half hour, forty minutes tops.

Allura to Lance [9:10]: Got it! Make sure you get him to bed and that he doesn’t check our rooms this time!!!!

Lance to Allura [9:12]: Dw your brother is an idiot

A few minutes after Lance heard the door click, he turned off the tv, waking Adam.

“Hey, I was watching that.”

“Sure you were,” Lance said to his cousin, “Hey, look at the time,” Lance yawned. “I’m gonna turn in, maybe play something with Pidge online.”

“Yeah. I better call it a night too,” Adam said. “Are the girls asleep?”

“Rachel’s hanging out with Marco, Allura said she was tired.”

Adam nodded sleeply and Lance watched him as he stumbled to his bedroom. Perfect.

Lance took the next half hour to straighten his hair and pick out his clothes. This was the first big party of the year, in truth his first high school party, and impressions mattered. Lance was out and proud, but a bi-flag crop top and tights with booty shorts was still pushing it. He settled on a white t-shirt, a blue printed shirt left unbuttoned, and his favorite pair of ripped jeans. Cool, bro, but not too preppy. He donned on a hat and climbed onto his dresser and wiggled his way out of the basement’s small half window.

The party wasn’t that far. A block away from his house, Lance could already hear the pounding of the music. Lotor lived in a big mansion a big property of land cutting him off from the rest of the neighborhood. Everyone knew that while his parents were rich that the relationship was less than stellar, apparently due to a nasty divorce years ago. Still, the guy threw wild parties.

Lance stumbled his way into the house, through the crowds of people. The house was humid, and hazy. Already sweating, Lance’s hair stuck to the back of his neck. Really bad dance music buzzed through the room, too loud to really hear anything.

Rachel and Allura who were already dancing. Allura was in a pale pink romper, Rachel, preferring more of the tomboy look with shorts and a tank top.

When the three of them were younger and Allura hadn’t died her hair platinum silver yet, everyone thought they were triplets. It was still obvious that they were related, the same dark skin, the same blue eyes, the same long legs, and they were often thought of as a package deal. It was weird to see one without all three of them.

“Hey, you made it!” Allura smirked.

Lance pinched her arm, “That was one time! He caught me one time.”

Allura shrugged and they moved off the dance floor into the quieter kitchen.

Lance whistled at the marble countertops and chandelier. Lotor had money alright. In a lot of ways this was just a crazy high school party, but kids knew better than to mess with Lotor or his stuff, meaning that every room was still relatively clean and orderly.

Lance was handed a beer in a solol cup.

“Are Hunk and Pidge coming?”

“Naw. Not really their scene. I believe Hunk said, ‘no way in hell’ like he actually said hell.” Lance laughed tipping back the already stale drink.

“Ooo wait, you have to hear the drama,” Rachel said.

“Spill,” Lance said leaning into his sister and cousin.

“Well apparently someone already got into a fight.”

“Who?”

“Don’t know, new kid,” Allura said. “But he was totally Rachel’s type. Total bad boy.”

“You didn’t see him?” Lance asked Rachel.

“No,” she said exacerbated “I was in the bathroom. But apparently he’s a transfer student. And really hot.”

“Interesting,” Lance said.

Then he spotted someone else with silver hair and a mean look in his eyes walking toward them.

“Shit, Lotor’s coming this way. Bye,” Lance made a saluting gester before turning in the other direction, back into the fray of the party.

Lance tired to slip through the crowd. An elbow rammed into his back, sending him in the opposite direction. And he was tumbling forward. Lance felt that stomach fluttering feeling like when he lost control on the swings. His drink slipped out of his hand. He tried to reach out for anything but was only met with air.

Lance was falling, and in about two seconds he was going to fall flat on his face.

Something moved in front of him. A hand reached out and grabbed his arm, holding him in place tugging him back to standing. Lance eyes were still stuck on his shoes, like he might still fall over at any moment.

The hand on his bicep tightened. Strong hands, hands that were hot to the touch.

“What the fuck,” someone murmured. His voice was husky and dark like velvet. The guy felt big. He wasn’t any taller than Lance, but somehow his presence just filled up space, towering over Lance despite his own swimmer’s build.

Black combat boots, ripped black jeans, a black leather jacket, black fingerless gloves, ragged long hair in an outdated style, sharp angles everywhere, and then dark, bottomless eyes.

Lance felt his voice hitch.

He couldn’t look away from those eyes.

“Keith,” Lance breathed.

04/16/2019
YOOOOO GUYSSSS this fic now available to read!!!! I'm working on chapter 2 right now and it should be out later this week!!!!! It's been renamed The Memories We Share and it would make me so happy if you would go and read it! I really need some help with it because I really want it to go well. Thanks for your support!!!!!

Chapter Text

Klance Au Month
February 19, 2019
Day Nineteen: Canon Divergent

*Chasing Visions of the Future*

Let me set the scene for you…

Keith wakes up at the Quantum Abyss after another memory flash. The closer they get to their destination, the longer and more detailed the flashes are. And Keith, who has such a strong connection to quintessences, is more affected by it. He has just witnessed part of his birth. On Earth, Krolia had a hard labor and when he was born, he was not a healthy baby. So Krolia and Texas took Keith to the Blue Lion and asked for help. She gave him part of his quintessence, which is why Keith is so sensitive to the stuff and why he has a connection with the Blue Lion. And it’s why he keeps blacking out seeing visions of the past and future while Krolia only gets a glimpse.

Another flash happens and this time Keith sees visions of the future. He is out for almost a week. During that flash, he witnesses them saving Romelle, confronting Lotor, going back home, their fights, their struggles, everything, he sees Lance hurting, but most importantly he sees his friend Allura dying.

When Keith wakes up, he knows he has to save the universe.

But it isn’t easy. Keith keeps making the same mistakes again, and the present begins to reflect his visions of the future. Keith ignores Lance. They confront Lotor again. Clone shiro attacks them. These things don’t sit right to Keith, he knows he missing something, that there’s more to this story.

Keith is trying his best to change things, he doesn't want to regret his choices this time, and he feels himself on the edge of a breakdown.

How was Keith to save his friend? An entire universe? And on top of that, Keith just didn’t want to feel regret anymore. Regret at the choices he hadn’t made yet. Maybe, just maybe, Keith deserved a little bit of happiness too.

They’re on their way to rescue Shiro, Keith decides not to rush into it head first. Lance notices that something is off.

This is the moment where things begin to change…

Lance finds Keith sitting in the training room. His knees are tucked into his chest, all that new confidence suddenly lost.

“Do you want to spar?” Lance asks, because he doesn’t know what else to say.

“M’fine.”

“Come on Keith. I know you’re antsy. A quick spar will make you feel better,” Lance tried.

“I said I’m fine,” Keith bit back. He tucks himself into his knees.

Lance crouches next to him, a hand hesitating by Keith’s shoulder, before he rests it at his side “Hey. Talk to me Mullet. What are you thinking about?”

“Why do you care so much?”

A pause. Keith didn’t mean to hurt Lance, he was just always saying the wrong things.

“This scares me,” Lance voice cracks. “You always get all weird like this when something bad’s about to happen.”

“What about you,” Keith says lifting his head. “You are so quiet now. You’re never quiet. That scares me”

“I don’t know man.” Lance mimics Keith tucking his legs up. There’s still a small space between them, “I’m just trying not to look dumb in front of you.”

“You’re not dumb Lance.”

“Well then why did Shiro happen.”

“That happened because...Nevermind. It doesn’t matter. We’ll get Shiro back.”

A pause.

“Your leaving the team again aren’t you. You’re going to get Shiro back and leave.”

Keith looks startled at this, “What are you talking about?”

“You left for me once. I can’t...you can’t do that again. I know this isn’t some participation game. I know I’m not enough, but I don’t know. We’ll figure something out. Maybe I could stay on as a cargo pilot.”

“Hey woah, woah Lance slow down there. I’m not going anywhere.”

Scared blue eyes, “Then what’s going on?”

Keith clenches his jaw.

“You’ve always been there for me Keith. Let me be there for you. You don’t have to do this alone.”

“I can’t,” Keith stutters, “I can’t tell you Lance. I want to. But I can’t.”

Keith looks at Lance trying to express how much he cared about Lance, trying to show him all things that always go unsaid between them.

Lance nods, “Whatever it is. You can do it.”

“What?”

“Do you know how amazing you are Keith? You can do anything.”

“I don’t--”

“Keith do you know what a jack of all trades is?”

“Lance--”

“It’s someone who’s halfway decent at everything. Therefore good at nothing. Like me.” Lance toes the ground with his boot, “But you...you can do everything.”

Lance shakes his head, “God. Here I am, talking about myself, when Shiro’s in danger. I’m sorry I’m so selfish.”

Lance gets up to leave, but Keith tugs him back down. He doesn't miss the tears forming in Lance’s eyes.

“Why do you think that? Why would you ever think that?”

“I don’t know. I’m just useless.”

Keith gives Lance a hard look, “You’re not useless. You’re…”

“Yeah?” Lance says.

“You’re you. You hold the team together and…” Keith cuts off his thoughts. About Lance, about what he wants to say, “Can you help me? I need another man to go get Shiro.”

“What?”

“Two swords are better than one Lance,”

“How do you know I have a sword?”

Shit, Keith thought. He looks at Lance, trying to plead with him, for him to understand he couldn’t explain.

Lance huffs and stands, “Come on team leader. We’ve got a guy that needs saving.”

Lance reaches out and Keith takes his hand.

This wasn’t how the timeline went, but maybe, just maybe it was the beginning of something better, of everything going right. Because with Lance’s warm hand in his, it certainly felt right.

Chapter Text

Klance Au Month
February 20, 2019
Day Twenty: Leakira

*Midnight Premiere*

When Lance had asked Keith to go to the movies with him, he had no idea that the cyber steampunk mecha movie he had been anticipating for over a year was going to be adapted into a romance.

Lance had first meet Keith last year at an anime convention. Lance, who was obsessed with the 90’s cyberpunk robot-cat comic and already anticipating it’s reboot movie that had just been announced, had cosplayed his favorite character, Leandro. He knew he looked good in the long coat, and turtleneck, plastic blasters clipped to his belt. Hunk and him had spent months working on their costumes.

And now Lance’s goal, besides having a good time and spending way too much money on fanart, was to get some good photos with a convincing Akira.

Sure there were lots of Akira’s running around, but nobody was quite right. Then he saw him. A guy who was probably a little too tall to be a convincing Akira, but he pulled off the look, with long ragged hair, sharp angles and a more than perfect costume. He even had the signature Akira grump facing going on. Plus he was hot. Very hot. Beautiful even. It was like he was made to be Akira.

So Lance had walked up to him and started laying on his charms. At first Lance thought the guy was in character, but he slowly realized that his Akira was just a little closed off as a person. But eventually a mutual love of the show broke the ice.

“Don’t you think Akira and Leandro just have this crazy chemistry?” Lance said. “Like, I know it was the 90’s but like damn. They’re like super cyberpunk space ranger partners.”

Akira, who Lance had found out was named Keith, looked up at him hesitantly, “I always thought Akira was gay to be honest.”

Lance smiles, “Same. I always connected with Leandro, so I headcanon him as bi, even though the Akira/Leandro stuff is like super low key.”

“I mean they looked at a sunset together. Can’t get more romantic than that,” Keith said rolling his eyes.

“Leakira is my shit man” Lance bounded on the balls of his feet knowing he had found a compatible soul, “Would you mind taking a few pics with me?”

“Er. If you want. I’m not super good in front of a camera though.”

“Naw. You’ll do great.”

Lance dragged Keith to a quiet area of the venue and had Hunk take their photos. Keith was stiff at first, but slowly relaxed as Lance danced around and did dumb poses.

“Okay last ones guys. I think we have a lot of good stuff here,” Hunk called.

Keith leaned into Lance.

“Er…”

“Just trust me,” Keith said his dark eyes flicking up to Lance.

Keith pulled on the lapples of Lance’s coat and kissed his cheek. Lance stopped working for about five seconds.

“Oooo that one turned out really good,” Hunk said walking over to them to show them the camera.

The photos had turned out great.

“Thanks for the pics Keith, these are awesome. I can put these on my insta right?”

“No problem. You’re costume is really good too.”

“Right? I even got my hair cut for this,” Lance said pushing through his curls.

Keith reached up and touched softly at Lance’s shaved sides, “It looks really good.”

Lance felt himself blush. “Uh yeah thanks.”

Keith let his hand fall.

“Umm couldigetyournumber?” Lance let out.

Keith took out a pen and wrote a string of numbers on Lance’s arm. “Bye sharpshooter,” he called.

Lance squawked something awkward out as Keith left. Hunk wouldn’t stop laughing at him for a solid five minutes.

And that began the texting. They didn’t go to the same school, but lived pretty close to each other, which meant texting slowly evolved into hanging out, and accourind to Hunk, flirity. Lots of low key, flirting.

It had been a big step when Lance had asked Keith to the movies. When he had called it a date. It wasn’t supposed to be a big deal. But then, during the midnight premiere, dressed in their costumes, just as Lance was about to reach out for Keith's hand, Leandro leaned into Akira and they watched as the two characters they shipped make out on the big screen, the rest of the crowd cheering and clapping.

The two were in frozen in shock.

***

Keith is still holding his bag of popcorn when they get out of the theater. The rest of the midnight premier audience trickles out behind them still running on adrenaline.

“That was…” Keith trails off.

“Wow.”

“Yeah…”

“I’m shook.”

“They didn’t… this was not advertised at all like a romance.”

“Reviewers didn’t say anything either…”

“Wasn't what I expected.”

Lance turns, looking at Keith from the corner of his eye, “But like, it was so good right?”

Keith turns and smiles at Lance, “So good.”

Lance slips his hand into Keith’s.

When Keith drops Lance off at home they stand awkwardly outside next to the car. It’s almost four in the morning by now and the street is dark.

“My mom’s forcing me to go to school tomorrow,” Lance says trying to stall.

“Sucks for you,” Keith grins. Keith got to take the day off because he had gotten a good grade on his midterms.

Lance pouts.

But then Keith’s looking up at him, a hand reaching for his hair, “You know, you’re way cuter than the guy that played Leandro.”

Lance’s breath hitches, “You think?”

Dark uncertain eyes. And Lance is leaning in. Lips meet. Hands holding fast to clothing. Lance pinning Keith to the car behind him. Lance is kissing back hard, trying to show Keith how long he’s wanted this.

Keith chuckles against his mouth, “Way cuter.”

Chapter Text

Klance Au Month
February 21, 2019
Day Twenty-One: Crossover

*The Lost Avatar*

(Avatar the Last Airbender)

The avatar was supposed to be born to the Watertribe. The priests tried every possible test to find the avatar, both in the south and the north. They even brought in monks who specialized in the mythos of the spirit realm and the legends of the avatar. Still they could not be found. Eventually the world gave up all hope, some even speculated they had died in the last incarnation. It was a time of peace, perhaps the world did not even need an avatar...

In the Southern Water tribe, born into a large family of five, was a young boy named Lance. Although his whole family were benders, it became clear very early on that Lance did not possess any talent.

Until on his seventeenth birthday when he started bending fire.

Lance was sitting outside the chieftain's hut while his parents and the village elders discussed what was to be done.

“It’s never been heard of before.”

“To bend another element…”

“Perhaps…”

“Perhaps what,” That was his mother's voice.

“Perhaps the boy is merely just a fire bender…”

“It’s not possible.”

Then his father cut in, “With all due respect, priestess Honevra of the Northern Water tribe herself just conducted the trials today. The boy is the avatar.”

“But how could we miss it?”

“That’s the question isn’t it?” His father says, his voice cold anger, “How could you miss this?”

Lance leaned back into his polar bear dog Blue, not for the first time feeling like the most useless person in the entirety of the Watertribe.

***

It was decided that because of Lance’s lack of inclination towards the other elements that he would begin his training with fire. Next he would learn air, and hopefully connect more with the avatar state under the guru Coran. Then he would go to the Northern Watertribe, finally concluding with earth. It could be ten or more years before he sees home again.

So Lance, a poor boy from the South Pole, who couldn’t even read, was shipped off to the Fire Nation.

Lance fideged with his hair, which was tied in the traditional warrior's wolf tail. The tribe had given him a set of nicer clothes so that he could represent his tribe with honor. Lance had never worn something so nice, and he felt too afraid to sit or touch anything as he was escorted from the port to the palace. Too afraid to breath.

But now standing in the ornate welcoming hall, under the ornate gold and red architecture, and he felt out of place, a country bumpkin, which was what he was.

He hadn’t even been allowed Blue, and after the month long voyage, he missed her sorely.

Becoming the avatar, being honored and revered, it was everything anyone would want, everything Lance should have wanted, but now with people looking at every move he made, controlling everything he did, Lance missed the invisible freedom that came with being a poor fisherman's son.

A tall woman in formal attire accompanied by attendants walked in. The Fire Lord…or lady. Krolia. She was everything the legends had said, elegant, beautiful, and fierce. She had been a warrior before she took on her duties and it showed.

She bowed to Lance who stumbled to bow back.

“Avatar Lance, we have waited a long time for this day.”

“I’m sorry,” Lance squeaked, “There was a storm and—“

Her eyes became warm, “I meant we have been waiting for the avatar to show himself, it is a great honor to house and train you.”

“Oh er right. Yeah. Of course your highnesses, Fire lady-ness.” Lance clamped his mouth shut.

Lance thought he caught the edge of a stiff smile from the Fire Queen. “This is Kolivan. He will be your master while you are here.” A large man with a long dark braid and intimidating look stepped forward.

They exchanged bows.

“And here comes my son.”

Lance turned to the sound of footsteps. The young man gave Lance a once over and a stiff bow before joining his mother side.

The young man, near Lances own age, was unlike anyone Lance had ever seen. He was tall, with the same elegant nature as his mother. Long hair combed up into a typical fire nation top knot, a few hairs curling against his neck. Dark, jewel eyes. Every muscle was was toned, like he had spent years training, because he had. He was handsome.

Lance swallowed hard.

“Prince Keith has almost finished his training,” Kolivon said, “I want him to train you in the basics. If that is alright with you avatar.”

“Er just Lance is fine Master Kolivan,” Lance said, “but yeah. That should...that’ll be fine.”

The next few hours are rough for Lance to say the least. Lance is normally a really bubbly young man, but he felt so out of place, so wary of doing something wrong that he’s on edge the whole evening.

The food is weird, he don’t know the proper etiquette for anything, he stuck with a bunch of boring officials that talk his ear off, and now he’s in a large room that doesn’t feel at all like home, and he’s really starting to miss his family.

And that’s how Lance finds himself sneaking out the window towards the gardens, a place so green and not at all like his ice covered home, but somehow still safe eeling. He sits by a pond, a large tree overhead.

“Not thinking of running away are we?” A deep voice sounds.

Lance startles back to see Prince Keith looming behind him, now dressed in simpler clothes, his hair down.

“And what made you think that,” Lance asks boldly.

“You looked like you were trying to find an escape all through dinner.”

“Oh,” Lance sets his chin on his knees.

There’s a rustle of grass as Keith sits next to him.

“It must be different here…” the prince says. He sounds like he’s trying to comfort Lance but not quite sure what to do.

“Yeah. I’ll say. Everything’s so…”

“So what?”

“Lonely,” Lance says on instinct. Lance flushes. “I didn’t mean. Everything’s beautiful here. It’s vibrant and there’s color and it’s really nice and--”

The prince erupts in laughter.

Lance looks to him in confusion. “I’m sorry I said something rude about your home.”

“It’s fine,” Keith says still snickering. He puts a hand over his mouth and finally calms down. “You aren’t wrong. At least here in the palace. It’s all about honor, duty, protocol.” His eyes shine “I understand that feeling. Loneliness. Because I am revered, respected, nobody wants to get too close.” The prince puts his head on his knees still looking at Lance.

“I’ve only been the avatar for two months. But I hate it. I don’t like this feeling. Like people don’t want to approach me. I miss being just a commoner.”

“What was it like? Before?”

“Free. I felt free.” Lance toes at the ground “didn’t realize though until I lost it. “But I can’t run, it’s too great an honor, for me, for my family, my tribe.

Keith nods. “Well we can suffer together then.”

Keith gets up and offers a hand to Lance. Then he leads Lance to his room. Maybe it won’t be so bad.

Maybe he’s found a friend.

***

Training is bad. Lance has muscles from working on a ship, from living out in the frozen seas, but apparently it’s not the same muscles, because for the past three hours he’s been squatting, just squatting holding a leaf, and his whole body is quaking with the effort.

Keith slaps his side with a wooden practice sword “don’t move.”

Keith’s softness, the friend he thought he had made, was gone. Lance had tried to goof-off with him this morning, race him as the warmed up before the lesson, but was met with steely indifference.

Another bead of sweat trickles down Lance neck.

“Focus on the leaf.”

“I’m trying.”

It’s obvious Keith is not a teacher. He’s been trying to get Lance to put this stupid leaf on fire for forever, but Lance isn’t getting it and Keith is losing patience.

He smacks Lance again.

“What is your problem?” Lance jerks the sword away and tosses it on the ground. “Do you have a secret evil twin or something.”

“I’m sorry?” Keith says confused.

“You were nice last night.”

“But I’m training you now. I can’t be nice, Lance. You have to get this.”

Now Lance is frustrated, “Don’t you get this? I haven't bended before in my life! I’m a useless avatar. I’m not going to get it.”

Lance kneels over, the muscles finally giving out.

There's a soft ‘oh’ sound. “I’m sorry. I didn’t think.” A huff, “Fire bending requires discipline. It’s a hard, unruly element. This is the ideology on teaching it.”

“What? To be a hard ass?”

Keith bends down in front of Lance, and Lance has no choice but to look in those eyes. “Look this is new for me too Okay? I want to do what’s best. Give me time okay?”

Lance lets out a sigh, “I’m sorry for yelling.”

“I’m sorry for not explaining why I was doing what I was doing.”

Keith reaches out and Lance allows himself to pulled up. “And you aren’t useless.”

Lance let’s go of Keith’s warm hand, “Thanks.”

“Let’s get some water and try again.”

Lance takes up the horse stance again. “No. I got this I’m going to do it.” Lance says never one to back away from anything.

Keith gives him an appraising look.

An hour later and Lance finally starts a little flame.

He gasps and hugs Keith which immediately extinguished it.

“I did it!” Lance screeches.

Keith smiles down on him a light dust of pink on his cheeks, “You did.”

***

Lance learns at a fast rate. Soon he’s being taunt by Kolivan, sparing with the prince. Often times though he works with other students, as Keith has his princely duties.

But it’s no time before the two are inseparable. It’s Lance who gets them into trouble, sneaking out, playing pranks, causing mayhem. But it’s also quiet walks, with hands brushing, and telling each other their deepest fears and insecurities. Both of them thinking they aren’t enough; they find solace in each other.

At first Lance thought he would be thrown from the palace, but one day Lady Krolia approaches him, only to throw her arms around him and thank him for making her son happy.

Lance is nineteen when he’s deemed ready to travel to the Northern air temple. He studied for two years, an amazing rate at which to master an element.

***

Lance and Keith sneak away for the day, his last day. They spend the day lounging and laughing and just being in each other’s presence.

Keith brings him to his room that evening. “I have something for you. A gift.” He says in the sullen voice which means he’s nervous.

“Oh?” Lance smirks.

Keith goes into his room and comes out with a large metal cage, a large bird inside.

“Oh,” Lance says surprised.

“This is Red. He’s a messenger hawk. So we can exchange messages.” Keith looks down.

Lance bounces on his toes,”Really?”

Keith let’s open the cage and Red immediately flies to sit on Lances shoulder.

Lance leaps forward, the bird squawking off of him. “I love you Keith,” he says dragging Keith into his arms.

They both stiffen, realizing what was said.

“Er—” Lance says.

“No. It’s okay,” Keith says quietly.

Lance pulls away.

“I mean,” dark eyes, a tongue nervously darts over chapped lips. “No I mean, me too.”

“Oh. Good. Perfect. Okay. Awesome.”

Keith rolls his eyes and kisses Lance cheek.

“Well I have to pack and… yeah.”

“I’ll see you tomorrow,” Keith says.

They hold hands for a brief moment, neither willing to say out loud that tomorrow is goodbye, just when everything had started.

But they eventually pull away. Lance takes the messenger hawk and goes back to his room.

The next day a royal entourage sees Lance off. Lance wishes it wasn’t such a formal affair, that he had more time with Keith.

But Keith’s in front of him, pretending like everyone isn’t watching this goodbye, or perhaps, just not caring.

Lance draggs something out of his pocket and puts it in Keith hand, wrapping his finger around it.

Keith opens his hand. It’s a beautiful blue stone, carved with an ancient Watertribe rune. The symbol means beloved or soulmate. It can also mean home. It’s held on a blue ribbon.

“Can you hold onto this for me?” Lance asks, feeling his face flush.

“Of course,” Keith smiles. He traces Lance jaw, wiping away a tear that slipped down his cheek, before pulling him into one last hug.

Eventually Lance has to pull away from the warm embrace. He climbs on the ship, his eye never leaving Keith.

Shiro, Keith’s own personal guard, was assigned to accompany Lance to the temple. He puts a hand on Lance shoulder as they watch the boat drift away, Keith watching from the dock becoming smaller and smaller.

“Fuck.” Lance says.

“Lance?” Shiro asks.

“Shit. I didn’t tell him what it means.” Lance dramatically begins to knock his head against the mast of the ship.

Chapter Text

Klance Au Month
February 22, 2019
Day Twenty-Two: High School

*My Shoujo High School Love Story*

Lance has been trying to figure out Keith Kogane for a long time. Everyone says he’s a delinquent, that he’s no good, and that you should stay away from him. But Lance can’t help but want to know more.

From his spot in the back of the classroom he can watch Keith, because despite the rumor, despite his rough looks and lack of respect for the student dress code, he still comes to class and gets good grades.

Perhaps he is all the things the rumors claim, but he’s still really nice to look at.

“Kurogane-san, please watch what I’m doing and not the back of your classmates heads,” Wimbledon-sensei says in English.

Lance whips back to the front of the class, now beet red, “Sorry sir,” he says.

The class laughs as his teacher shakes his head, “Just because you can speak English doesn't mean you shouldn’t pay attention.”

Lance looks down, “Yes sir.”

Lance dares to peek up. Keith catches his eye, a smile on his lips. Lance quickly flicks his eyes away.

For the rest of the day Lance tries to throw himself into his work, not daring to catch Keith’s eye again. But soon he’s daydreaming, his teachers voices fading into the background. Instead, Lance listens to the scratch of pencils and the rain beating against the window.

After School Lance realizes that he’s forgotten his umbrella. Students and teachers pass by him into the cold drizzle. Lance sits by the shoe lockers, until eventually the school empties out. Normally Lance loves the rain, the clean scent mixed with asphalt. But the rain isn’t letting up at all and he knows is that he’s going to have to make a run for it, getting soaked in the process. His mom is going to be so mad at him.

Lance opens his locker and grabs his shoes, he knows they’ll be ruined by the time he gets home. He pulls them on anyway, leaving his class shoes in the locker. Lance is just about to step out into the rain when someone grabs his shoulder.

Lance sucks in a breath.

Keith looks at him from the side of his eye, shoving an umbrella into his hand, “Here. I live close.”

Startled, Lance takes the umbrella and watches as Keith darts into the rain, his bag over his head.

“Wait,” Lance yells out.

Keith turns back to look at him, his hair already wet and dark against his neck.

Lance opens up the umbrella and darts over to Keith. “We can share.”

Keith nods and takes the umbrella handle back, their hands brush. Lance lets go.

After a quick ‘where do you lives,’ they decide to walk to Keith’s house, and Lance will take the umbrella from there. Keith lives next to the train station, which made it easy for Lance to get home.

Lance had never realized how small the space was under an umbrella until he was sharing it with Keith. Their hands kept brushing, he can feel the heat coming off the other boy’s body. Lance took a quick peek. Keith was looking at him, those dark eyes, intense, yet not scary.

Lance flicked his eyes away quickly, letting the awkward silence take over.

“Keith. That’s an American name, right Kogane-san?” Lance stuttered out.

“I was adopted when I was seven. But I’m Japanese. At least Kogane, my last name, is.” Keith says.

“Oh.”

Another pause.

“Are you foreign?” Keith asks. He doesn’t say it mean the way most people ask Lance, instead, just curiosity.

“I’m half Cuban. But I’ve always lived here.”

“But you know English?”

“Yep. And Spanish.”

Keith nods, “That’s cool.”

Another pause. Lance frantically tries to think of something to say.

“Kurogane, Isamu. Isamu-kun,” Keith says quietly. A shiver goes up Lance’s spine. “It’s a Japanese name.”

“Yeah,” Lance squeaks out, “But my family calls me Lance. My American name.”

“Lance,” Keith says it carefully, like he’s trying to say it correctly. “It’s a nice name.”

Lance feels his blush creep up to his neck.

“This is me,” Keith says in front of a large apartment complex.

“Oh,” Lance says, a little disappointed. Why hadn’t he been able to say something more interesting?

“Why don’t you come up. Dry off,” Keith says, dragging a hand through his hair. “The rain should let up in a bit.”

“Oh. Okay. Thank you,” Lance says.

The apartment is not very large, probably enough room for three or four people, but it’s clean.

Lance can’t help but notice the the door placard, “Shirogane?”

“Ah. Yeah. My adoptive parents. Shirogane. I uh. Kept my old name though.”

Lance nods.

Keith’s room is also clean, sparse. Not like Lance’s room at all.

Keith hands Lance a towel and Lance dries his hair off. He can’t help but notice that the towel, the room, smells like Keith, clean, but spicy, like cinnamon deodorant. Keith towels off his own hair.

“Would you like something to drink Kurogane-san?”

“Um. Whatever.”

Lance listens to Keith rummage around in the fridge while he sits on the floor near the bed, trying to take it all in, the books, the poster’s for an alien movie, the neatness, trying to piece together who Keith is.

Keith comes back with some tea, it sits steaming in front of them.

“You’re good at math right Kogane-san?” Lance manages to squeak out.

“I’m okay.”

“Could I ask you a question about today’s lesson? I don’t think I got it,” Lance says already rustling through his bag.

“Keith.”

“Huh?”

Keith is looking down, the back of his hand over his mouth, “You can call me Keith. If you want.”

“Oh. Okay.”

Their eyes meet, Lance lasts about two seconds before he has to look away, “Um Lance is fine. I don’t mind.”

“Okay. Then.”

They fiddle over the math lesson for a while. They’re close. Way too close. Lance can barely concentrate.

Then Lance remembers something, “You knew my name. Before. Knew my whole name.”

A light pink spreads up Keith’s throat. “I always noticed you.”

And now it’s Lance’s turn to redden.

“No. I mean,” Keith curses under his breath, “I saw you, last spring, when you were late to class and got in trouble. You were saving that kitten.”

Lance cocks his head.

“In the alley. You saved that cat.”

“Oh. Blue. Yeah,” Lance smiles.

“I noticed you from then. You’re really good at languages and everyone seems to like you. I always wanted to be like that,” Keith shrugs. “And you always help whoevers on cleaning duty. I just. You always seemed really nice.”

Lance looks at Keith. He has a embarrassed pout on his face. “You seem nice too.” Lance reaches forward, a hand on the bandage on Keith’s cheek, “Despite these.”

Keith’s eyes widen, “These?”

“People say you fight.”

Keith lets out a stuttered laugh, “These are from Red.”

“Red?” Lance asks.

“Wait a moment.”

Keith darts up. He comes back with a very grumpy cat in his arms. “She likes me best, but she still likes to play and bite.” He holds her like a baby in his arms, scratching behind her ears. He sits back next to Lance.

Lance scootches forward. “She’s cute.”

The cat glares up at Keith before swiping a paw and flipping out of the boy’s arms.

Keith chuckles. “Yeah.”

Lance doesn't know why but he finds himself leaning forward, into Keith. Keith’s eyes are dark, but they light up, like the stars in a night sky.

You’re too close, he thinks.

“It stopped raining,” Keith stutters.

Lance pulls back, “Oh right.” He lets out a low chuckle.

Keith leads him to the door. Lance is about to leave when Keith grabs Lance’s arm, “Can I get your number?”

“Oh! Yeah. Yes.”

They smile awkwardly as they exchange phones.

***

That day in the rain starts something.

At first the class atmosphere feels stilted, like others are unsure why this bright bubbly boy is talking to the aloof Keith Kogane. But slowly they seem to accept the odd friendship, a friendship built on sneaked glances and heated arguments and soft chatter.

Lance learns that Keith isn’t as intimidating as he seems, just awkward. He learns that Keith is good at everything, and will do anything. He learns that he has a quiet way about him, but likes to bicker too. He learns that he feels happiest when he’s around Keith.

That spring Lance and Keith are walking home, the cherry blossoms, drifting down in the light breeze.

Lance is walking ahead of Keith, prattling on about something or other.

Keith grabs onto Lance’s sleeve.

“Keith?” Lance says turning back.

“I like you,” he blurts out, his face pink, going pinker. He looks away, “I really like you.”

It takes a minute for Lance to comprehend, but he feels his whole face flushing. He takes a step closer, Keith still gripping his jacket. “Me too.”

Their eyes meet, and nothing else has to be said. They walk back home, Lance slipping his hand into Keith's.

Chapter Text

Klance Au Month
February 23, 2019
Day Twenty-three: TV Show of Choice

STOP THIS IS A CONTINUATION OF THE FIC I WROTE ON DAY 21. Make sure you read that one first :)

Answering some questions you might have.
Q: When is this AU taking place?
It’s still technically before avatar Aang's time period but it’s not the same universe. Basically Aang isn’t a part of this world. Think alternate reality.
Q: But in Avatar Katara’s grandmother and other benders start the Southern Watertribe.
In my version there has always been the two sister tribe and they get along pretty well. There also isn't a restriction on women bending in this au.
Q: You said Lance can’t read but he carves a symbol into Keith’s necklace.
Lance can now read the common tongue! Thanks of Keith’s nagging.
I made up the idea that the tribes have their own sacred/ancient languages. Think hieroglyphs but they look like Pokémon letters. So Lance does know some symbols in the ancient Watertribe language, but it’s basically a dead language only used for ceremonies and stuff so he can’t read it nor would a person learn to speak it besides a priest. People only know symbols basically to make their betrothal necklaces.

-And just if your wondering Keith can’t read it and he thought it was just a carving so he didn’t look it up lol. I think its logical because nobody knew or told Katara about her necklace until she was in the Northern Watertribe.

*The Lost Avatar Part Two*

Dear Keith,
It feels really strange to not be in the Fire Nation anymore. It feels strange not to have you near. I’m so glad you nagged me to learn to write. I can’t bare the idea of not at least hearing from you, especially when I don’t know when I’ll see you again. The air temple is weird. They divide the men and woman, so it’s just me and a bunch of old farts and little kids. And there’s no meat. Can you imagine Keith??? No meat! I already feel hungry. Training is going really well though. When I first arrived I was really worried I wouldn’t get it. I’ve only ever bended fire before and I was really really nervous that I just wouldn’t be able to do it. But it was surprisingly natural. Guru Coran just said something and it made sense and next thing I know, woosh. Air. Next he’s going to let me fly with a glider. I’m really excited for that! He said I need to do it early, something about learning about wind currents and stuff. Well I have to get back to training so I’ll send this off now!
Yours, Lance

Dear Lance,
It’s really boring here without you.
-Keith

Keith,
Oh my spirits. You can’t just write one sentence and consider it a letter!!!! Think of poor Red flying back and forth. I wrote you like three pages! Come on Princy boy. I know you can do better than that. Anyway. What’s going on with me you ask? Well, not much. Well actually a lot. Coran and I went up into the mountains and talked about the avatar state. And. It’s a lot. I had to unlock my chackras, which was fine. It’s getting into the avatar state that's hard. I have, surprise, surprise, never done it before. For an untrained avatar it’s only unlocked by strong emotions, normally by accident. And what can I say? I’m just a happy guy all the time. But yeah, to unlock the avatar state you have to let go. Of everything. Of my family, of you. I don’t know if I can do it…
Yours, Lance

Dear Lance,
Yeah. I miss you too. I can’t believe it’s been so long. Three months. It’s wow. Sorry about the last letter. My mind was preoccupied. Kolivan and my mom started talking about alliances. Marriage alliances. And that is really scary. Shiro got really weird about it, but I think he managed to convince them off of it. I’m trying to show my mom that I’m really thinking about my duties, so maybe she’ll back off. Shiro and I might enlist in the army for a little while. The army doesn't do much, passes out food, stuff like that, but I think a little distance from the palace might be best right now. As for the avatar stuff. I’m sure you already figured it out by now. I’m not worried. And letting go. It doesn’t mean forgetting Lance. It’s not like it’s forever. I’ll be right here waiting for you once you figure it out.
Keith

Other letters pass between the two, their only connection, but it’s a connection Lance and Keith are unwilling to part with. Soon Lance masters airbending and the avatar state. He’s only twenty-two and he’s finally going to be traveling to the Northern Watertribe.

Dear Keith,
I can’t believe I’m finally back in cold weather! Yeah it got cold up in the mountains, but it’s nothing like ice and water and snow ugh, I get to eat seal jerky and all my favorite things and it’s so good. Firebending has always been, like, me, you know? My favorite element. It’s special. But bending water for the first time feels just so natural. I don’t know how I never figured it out before. I think it may be because of how much confidence I have now. And I know I wouldn’t be like that without you Keith.

But anyway, I’ve been here for a week and I already just feel so at home and so happy. The air temple was interesting and everyone was nice, but it’s not like home and it wasn’t like being with you. I’m staying in the chieftain's house and his daughter Allura is really beautiful. She’s also just super amazing and nice and she feels like my best friend (beside you of course). The only downside is that her fiancee Lotor is my waterbending master and he’s a real pain in my ass. But I have to be nice to him not only for Allura’s sake, but because Priestess Honerva is his mom and she scares me. Blue’s also here, I made a special request for her. Turns out people have a hard time saying no to the avatar. It feels good to be reunited. The only thing that would make this better was if you were here. It’s been too long without you Keith.
I just want to see you,
Yours, Lance

Lance had somehow weasel-beared his way out of training today, something about an oh so important visitor. Blue and him were on a evening jog around the city when he saw it. Docked in the port was a royal Fire Nation hull. Lance looked up towards the palace. Sure enough, he could just make out a envoy of people in red and gold crossing their way into the palace.

Lance jumped onto Blue’s back and with a soft pat on the head, she sprinted off. They made good time, rushing through the city, leaping over bridges and waterways. Perhaps one or two people may have had to jump into the water, but Lance had given them plenty of warning.

Blue skidded into the welcoming hall, nails screeching on ice.

And there he was. Decked out in red furs, looking somehow bigger and more stately than he thought he could ever looked before was Prince Keith.

The man turned, suprised. Lance could just make out a glint of his necklace tied around Keith’s throat.

“Keith!” Lance called swinging off Blue and running towards the convoy. He shot Lotor a glare. He should have been told of this. He understood why a message from Keith wouldn’t have made it, but he should have been told by someone.

Allura stood next to her father Alfor, other officials and elders looking on disdainfully as Lance dashed up to Keith. Lance had to do everything in his power not to drag Keith into a bone crushing hug. His heart fluttered.

“Why didn’t you tell me you were coming,” he says coming up to Keith, ignoring the council behind him.

“It was a quick decision thing. I have some business to discuss,” his voice wasn’t hard, but it felt weird, formal.

“That’s right, Avatar,” Lotor said taking a step up, “This is important business.”

Lance glared, “Then as the Avatar and a member of the Watertribe should I not be involved? Is it not my job to create peace and harmony throughout the four nations?”

Lotor clicked his tongue, but he couldn’t say anything more.

“Lance may stay,” Keith said.

Then another figure came into the room. It was the chief from Lance’s own tribe. He was only a few years older than Lance and newly appointed.

“Chieftain Kinkade,” Lance said.

The tall man gave Lance an appraising look before bowing to Keith, and then to the rest of the envoy. With Kinkade here, the party moved from the welcoming chamber to the audience hall, a long room with chairs, a room Lance was normally polielty dismissed from entering.

“Would you like to begin Prince Keith?” Alfor said when everyone was settled.

Keith cleared his throat, “I don’t wish for this to sound hostile, but it has come to our attention that the Southern Watertribe has been infringing on the Fire Nation’s territories.”

A sound of admontionment was heard throughout the hall.

“Where Prince Keith?” Alfor asked.

“In our southernmost borders, in the sea more specifically. More and more fisherman come to me everyday telling me that their courses are overrun by Watertribe fisherman. And along with that, we are fishing less and less. There is not enough fish for the Watertribe to infringe on our territory,” Keith said firmly.

“I can speak to this,” Kinkade said in his quiet but powerful voice, “For the past few years our waters are turning up less fish. The otter-penguins, the tiger-seals, are gone. Not dead, not less numbers, just gone. The fish too, are scare. We do what we have to.”

“That doesn’t mean you can just come into the Fire Nation’s waters,” Keith cuts in.

“WIthout fishing, we have very little in the way of resources and food. We have had to do this to survive.”

“That’s no excuse. Many of my own people rely on fishing and now they can’t find anything either.”

Alfor stood up, “Prince Keith. We allowed you to call this session here, because you told us you wanted to refrain from argument, to refrain from a war. This is not the way.”

“What would you suggest then?”

The table was silent.

Lance looked up. Eyes were falling to him. He spoke up, “This is indeed a troubling story. We must all help out our brothers,” Lance said slowly. His tongue felt dry but he pressed on. “We must respect the four nations, but if we do not help one another out, then what is the point of humanity.”

“This is wise beyond your years,” Lotor cut in, “But it does not solve issues.”

Lance sat up straighter, “I myself am very curious to this issue. You say the fish are gone Chief Kinkade, surely they would not just disappear. I know from my years working on a fishing boat that we are careful to not over fish. The Southern Tribe does not have the population to wipe out multiple species.” Lance stood up, “It’s my belief that something else is going on here. I will personally travel there to find out what is the cause of this.

It was decided. Lance would return home with Kinkade the following day to figure out what was wrong. The convoy dispersed and Lance was finally able to walk up to Keith.

“Hi,” Lance said shyly.

“Hey. Sorry.”

“For what?”

“This. All this. I felt like I was attacking you.”

“Don’t worry. It’s something that needs to be solved, you couldn’t sit back.”

He reaches out for a handshake, but Keith pulls him to his chest instead. Lance feels like his entire body is buzzing.

Then Allura pushes forward, her eyes gleaming, “Oh! So Lance is your betrothed. When I saw the necklace I did wonder!” Allura turns to Lance, “You picked a lovely symbol.”

“Excuse me,” Keith says.

And just like that Lance’s entire insides are sinking. He bites his lip not daring to look at Keith.

And then he does.

And he’s livid.

“Lance. Oh you didn’t,” Allura says softly.

“Oh he did,” Keith says. And with that the young man is stomping off, out of the palace.

“Keith wait,” Lance calls.

But Keith’s running. The guards make an attempt to follow, but Shiro holds them back. Lance silently thanks Shiro and runs after Keith.

“Keith wait, I can explain,” they are now on a solitary balcony far away from the bustle of the palace. Keith looks like he wants to kick something, one hand tracing the edge of the necklace.

“Is this why everyone was looking at my funny? Did everyone know this whole time?” He bites out.

“Keith I wanted to tell you,”

Keith flips toward him, “Like hell you did. I’ve been wearing this stupid thing for what? Four years now. And you didn’t think to tell me what it meant? Is this some type of sick way of marking me? What the hell were you thinking.”

Lance feels himself crumbling inwardly. “Look Keith. What I did. It was stupid. And it wasn’t right,” Keith gives him a side eye, “But I didn’t mean to hurt you or not to explain, I just thought it would be better to tell you in person,” the quieter, “I didn’t mean it as a betrothal.”

Keith crosses his arms, “Then what did you mean.”

“Uh,” Lance blushes, “More like a promise. To court you. A lot of people don’t really do the whole dating thing in the Watertribe. And I want to. I know we never talked about what we were, or what we wanted. I just,” Lance shrugs. “I just wanted you to know what I felt.”

Keith gives him another look.

“I was nineteen Keith. I was stupid and hopelessly romantic and in love with you.”

“Are you still in love with me?”

“What?”

“Are you still in love with me?” Keith says a finger jabbing into Lance’s chest with every word.

“Of course,” Lance breaths.

“You are an idiot.”

“The biggest idiot,” Lance says with a sigh.

“We aren’t done with this discussion, by the way,” Keith says as he weaves his fingers with Lance’s. “We’ll talk about it when you get back.”

“I’m already leaving tomorrow,” Lance says woefully. “I can’t believe you’re here and now I have to leave.”

“I want to go with you but…”

“Keith no. You need to go home. If things are as tense as you made them sound, you need to be there for your people until it’s sorted out. I’ll go straight there after this is all done.”

Keith nods.

Lance sets his forehead against Keith, because despite the blunder, despite the years apart, it still feels like coming home when he’s with Keith.

“So what does the symbol mean?” Keith murmurs.

Lance reals back. “Oh. That? Pshh. Nothing important. Don’t worry about it.”

Keith gives him a skeptical eye, but doesn’t say anything more. The rest of the night is divided between formalities with the council and the quiet moments they can sneak in.

The next morning comes early. Lance slips out from Keith’s grasp. He looked so innocent sleeping like that, his hair mused, his frown gone. Lance kisses his forehead and makes it to the dock where Kinkade and his party are waiting.

“Do you really think there’s something more to this?” Kinkade asks him.

“There has to be,” Lance says.

***

And it turns out Lance is right.

When he lands on Southern Tribe lands, he can’t help but notice how barren it looks. Perhaps to an outsider, Watertribe lands always looks like this. But to Lance, it’s a shell of its former glory. Starved looks, no playing, no laughing, the nature around them is silent too.

But it’s not until he takes his father’s old fishing boat out that he finds out what’s wrong.

Because it turns out a giant sea serpent has been living under the ice in the south pole, and it just now has found a way out.

The massive thing withers out of the water, like it can sense Lance, like it’s been waiting to capsize his boat. Lance feels lucky to have some waterbending down now, because it’s the only thing keeping him from ending up in the water.

And that’s when Lance notices it.

This is not just any sea serpent. It’s something from the spirit realm.

The thing twists toward him. Lance dodges the blow, creating an ice path that he darts down. The things lashes out, creating a wave, which Lance easily rides across, manipulating the water and himself around the creature until he’s at it’s back. He tries firebending, then he tries to freeze the water around the serpent. But the creature breaks free, twisting around, trying to get at him.

Lance somehow ends up on its neck, near its head. But the creature is slick and whips from side to side, sending him over the top of its head.

On instinct, Lance reaches out for one of its curving horns, and manages to dangle before it’s mouth upside-down.

The creature opens his mouth.

Lance closes his eyes.

And....

Nothing.

Lance opens his eyes. The creature’s fish-like eyes gleam at him. It has something akin to intelligence.

Then it glows.

And Lance does feel that. Like something is dragging all the energy out of him.

In a last attempt, Lance swings forward toward the creatures eyes, hoping to impair it. But instead he touches it’s snout.

The spirit stops its glowing, stops its thrashing. It stills, almost a docile look in his eyes. Visions flash.

“You’re lost,” Lance says. “You aren’t supposed to be here.”

More visions. This creature knows him. In a way.

“You were hungry. Stuck under the ice. That’s why I couldn’t use my powers. You’ve been feeding off my energy. And then when I left…”

Lance sees more, the creature, not killing the wildlife persay, but sucking their energy. This creature, this spirit, was an energy regulator in the spirit world. He brought balance, he recycled energy.

But it had somehow gotten attracted to Lance’s energy, and had gotten lost and ended up here. That’s why Lance was so weak as a child. Why he couldn’t bend.

“Alright, buddy, it’s time to get you back to the spirit realm where you belong.”

The creature wimpers.

Lance let’s his mind empty, let’s go of everything, and let’s himself walk between the two worlds, guiding the creature with him.

***

Lance almost passes out when he gets back. But he makes it back to his tribe. Already tiger-seals and otter-penguins have returned, as if sensing the creature is gone.

Lance sends a message to both the Fire Nation and the Northern Watertribe before catching a ride with a sky bison and making his way to Keith.

Nothing much needs to be said when Lance gets to the palace. Keith is still wearing the necklace, which is the biggest sign that they’re going to be okay.

They are by pond, their spot, the evening turning to night behind them. “Umm Allura told me what it means.” Keith says resting his head on top of Lance’s.

Lance leans closer to hide his face. “You’re my home Keith.” He takes his hand, intertwining their fingers. “You’ll always be my home.”

Keith squeezes his fingers, “And you are mine.”

And Lance shifts to get a look at those eyes, the eyes that are always there to express every emotion that Keith refuses to let show on his face. Dark eyes meet his, warm and inky and full of a softness that takes his breath away.

“I’ll be here waiting for you,” Keith says against his lips.

Lance smiles into the easy kiss, “And I’ll always be waiting for you.”

Chapter Text

Klance Au Month
February 24, 2019
Day Twenty-Four: Camp Half-Blood

*Capture the Flag, Capture Your Heart*

Keith loved everything about Camp Half-Blood.

He loved the smell of strawberries in the air, he loved that he always felt at peace, always had enough to eat, always had something fun to do. He loved his friends. As a counselor, he loved his campers. He loved the family he found there.

Well, there was one thing Keith didn’t like.

Keith did not like the counselor of the Apollo cabin. Lance McClain was cocky, and arrogant, and loud, and obnoxious. He was always trying to one-up Keith, always calling him names, and he weirdly smelled like coconut, carmel and the ocean. He was really good at everything, and he was really cute.

Yeah. Keith hated the guy.

So when Coran announced the teams for capture the flag that morning, and for once the Ares cabin was not on the same team as the Apollo Cabin, Keith decided that he was going to crush the blue team.

“As always we start at sundown, now to your activities everyone,” Coran says, the campers practically racing toward their first activities.

Lance took that moment to walk past and send him a smirk, “Too bad Mullet, we make a pretty good team.”

Keith rolled his eyes, watching as Lance walked off to instruct kids in how to shoot a bow, hopefully only at monsters and other low-lives.

Pidge, the counselor of the Athena cabin, poked his side.

“Ow Pidge, what?”

“He’s got it so bad for you,” Pidge said with a grin.

“What are you talking about?”

Pidge gives him a flat stare. “You’re kidding right?”

“Ummm…?”

“Keith come on. Everyone’s talking about it.”

Keith leans forward even more perplexed.

“You know. Keith and Lance. Lance and Keith.” Seeing Keith’s still confused look Pidge maked a lewd gesture.

Keith felt his face heat, “We aren’t. That’s not possible. We are always at each other’s throats! Why would you think that?”

Pidge spread her arms, “That's the appeal of it. Or at least that’s what the Hermes cabin is saying. Them and the Aphrodite cabin have a bet going about when you guys are finally get together.”

“That makes no sense.”

“Well half my camper’s are shipping you.”

“Are you serious?”

Pidge noded. “Besides all the shipping stuff, didn’t you like hold the guy in his arms after he got hurt on that quest last year? And didn’t he say something about how beautiful your eyes are?”

“Well he doesn’t remember now. So it didn’t happen.”

“Hunk says he talks about you a lot.”

“Yeah. Probably talks about how much he hates my mullet.”

“Whatever you say,” Pidge said walking off to their cabin.

After lunch Keith decided to bring some of his campers to the archery field. They had been practicing all day with different styles of hand-to-hand combat, and someone suggested that it would be good to get some practice with long distance weapons. For Keith, that meant showing kids how to throw knives and stuff.

Unfortunately, Lance McClain was now standing in front of him, arms crossed unwilling to let him pass. “Oh no you don’t mullet. I’m not letting you tear up my equipment. Do you know how hard it is to replace all this stuff.” He jabbed into Keith’s chest.

Keith smacked his hand away, “You guys are here all day everyday, you have to let other people use the archery equipment Lance.”

Lance clicked his tongue, “I have no problem letting other kids use the stuff. It’s how you want to use it. Go throw your axes at a tree or something lumberjack.”

“Fight me for it.”

Lance snorted, “Even I’m not that stupid Kogane.”

“No. Tonight. If my team wins, you’ll let us practice however we want.”

“Fine!” Lance said.

“Fine,” Keith said before stomping away like the seventeen-year-old he was.

Keith couldn’t help but notice the snickers behind him. God he hated these twelve year olds and their shipping. They couldn’t even use the internet! How did they know this stuff anyway?

There’s one thing that Keith does know though: he’s going to absolutely crush Lance McClain.

***

“Well, well, well, look who’s in my territory now,” Lance said. He crossed up to Keith, hands in his pocket. “You made this too easy mullet.”

“You haven’t touched me yet McClain,” Keith smirked.

Lance’s easy smile dropped into a pout. He stalked toward Keith. Keith took two careful steps back. Lance took another step. Keith took another step back.

He bonked into something. Keith felt at the tree behind him.

Lance grinned, as he leaned into Keith’s space, an arm positioned above Keith’s head.

Keith leaned up towards Lance, getting a whiff of that tangy ocean scent. Lance’s eyes darted to Keith’s lips and back to his eyes.

Now it was Keith’s turn to smile. Keith angled himself closer.

Lance looked away, his face heating up.

Keith reached up toward Lance’s chin, fingers just ghosting Lance’s cheek. Lance shivered.

“Still haven’t touched me,” Keith said. He could feel Lance’s breath.

Lance’s voice hiccuped. Keith leaned closer still. And Lance flinched.

And Keith took his chance.

He kissed Lance hard, pulling their bodies together, grasping at Lance’s shoulders, holding him tight.

Lance fumbled against his lips, but then their mouths slotted together and with a little gasp, Lance melted. His hands softly clinged and tangled their way into Keith’s hair. Keith felt something warm flutter in his chest.

There was a short moment when Keith forgot what he was doing, what the plan was.

But then the horn sounded. And Keith knew they had won.

They pulled apart with a small pop. Lance’s his face was completely red now, his lips swollen, a slightly dazed look in his half lidded eyes.

“You are easy to distract McClain,” Keith winked.

“...wait.” Lance said.

Keith let go, walking out of the woods, “Thanks for the win,” he said with a little wave.

“Wait a minute--” then louder, “KEITH!”

Chapter Text

Klance Au Month
February 25, 2019
Day Twenty-Five: Neighbors

*Near Me In Body, Close to My Heart*

I.

It was six months into the program and Keith still haven't made any friends at the Garrison. Sure he had Shiro now, but that didn’t mean all his pain, all his problems suddenly disappeared. Heck, just last week he had punched some kid for being mean to him.

God Keith hated everyone here. They were either rude and mean like Taylor and James. Or they were weird and avoided him like his roommate Hunk.

Keith spent as much time as possible holed up in his room, but when Hunk showed up, he found other places to hide. In all honesty, Keith felt bad that Hunk was scared of him, but he didn’t know what to do.

After class Keith walked back to his room, intent on getting a book he was close to finishing. He reached his door. But the panel opened without him touching anything. And Keith was met with large blue eyes.

“Uh what are you doing?”

“Nothing,” the boy mumbled, “Looking for Hunk.”

Taylor carefully scooted around Keith, clutching something behind his back.

“What’s that?”

Keith watched the boys face redden, “Nothing,” he stuttered.

Keith didn’t say more, but simply watched as the kid slunked to the room next to Keith’s.

Keith glared. Taylor stuck his tongue at him before darting into his own room.

There was one thing Keith would never tell anyone, not even Shiro, because it felt like a shared secret. No matter how annoying Taylor was, Keith had somehow found it in his heart if not to forgive the kid, or at least to just ignore him and his behavior.

Because in the middle of the night when Keith was wide awake, he could hear Taylor through the wall mumbling and crying. Even with how guilty Keith felt for listening in, he also felt a little less alone.

II.

Lance took a deep breath before knocking on Keith’s door. He did it more as a formality. After no reply he touched the wall, letting the door slide back. “Keith?”

Keith looked up from the bed, the blankets cocooned around him. Lance was expecting tears, but there are none, just a glazed over expression.

“Yeah?” Keith asked.

Lance scratched the back of his neck, “I just wanted to make sure you’re okay. It was a rough day to day.”

“I’ll say,” Keith said.

Lance took a step closer to Keith, “Listen man. I know it’s not easy with Shiro gone. I know you didn’t want to be the leader, but you did a good job today, once we figured it out.”

Lance took another step, and since Keith didn’t protest, Lance sat on the bed.

Keith sat up, moving to the edge of the bed next to Lance. He mumbled something.

“What?” Lance asked in a gentle tone. Because Lance has seen the look in Keith’s eyes. He had seen it in Rachel, in Veronica, in the strongest people he’s known, just when they’re about to break. But Keith never breaks.

“I said thanks. For checking up on me.”

“Anytime. We’re here for you Keith.”

Keith nodded, his eyes shining. But Lance saw the clench of his jaw, and he knows that Keith still isn’t willing to let that tough facade crumble.

Lance lifted his arm and placed it around Keith’s shoulder. Keith doesn’t move away, but instead settled into his side.

“Shiro may be gone. But we’re your family too you know. And we’ll be here for you.”

“Thanks,” Keith rasped, “I never knew what it was like to have so many people there for me. But...I really appreciate it.”

Lance peeked at Keith. He saw a single tear streak down. He looked away, giving the guy his privacy.

They sit in silence like that. Lance stiff and looking straight ahead, Keith a heavy weight on his side, but trusting that Lance will hold him up.

III.

Keith woke up to crying.

It isn’t the first time he’s heard this.

Keith sighed and pulled on his boots and walked to his neighbor’s door. He knocked quietly.
Keith heard a “come in” so he tapped the button and let himself inside.

Lance was on the bed, curled into himself.

“I didn’t think it was you,” Lance said pushing away tears. His hair was a mess, he wasn’t wearing a face mask, the headphones he normally wore were pushed to the side.

“What’s wrong,” Keith said. “It’s not… it’s not the one too many paladin thing is it?”

“No. Not this time,” Lance said with a small sad smile. Keith wanted to punch it off his face. He hated these looks. The looks Lance gives when he’s trying to pretend everything's all right.

Keith stalked to the bed, sat down on the floor, and leaned back, “Talk.”

“It’s nothing.”

Keith looked back and glared.

“I just miss my family. I miss earth.”

“That’s not nothing Lance.”

His eyes darkened, his lip trembling.

“Just let it out Lance. It’s okay.”

“I’m not like this,” he said defiant. “I’m not a wuss.”

“Who said you were?” Keith asked.

Lance clicked his tongue.

Keith clenched his teeth. Lance won’t open up if he doesn’t want to. You can see the edges of his pain, but he rarely shares it. But still, Keith wants to help him, wants to make sure Lance knows how much he cares.

“Can you show me how to do that face mask you’re always raving about?” Keith asked unsure.

Lance doesn’t say anything.

Worried, Keith looked back.

A small timid smile sat on Lance’s lips, “I thought you would never ask,” he said.

IV.

Keith stood outside Lance’s door. He was still in his blade of Marmora suit. His hand reached out, wanting to knock, but not knowing what to say.

What do you say to someone you haven’t seen in a year, almost three years if you count the space whale. What do you say to someone that you left?

Keith walked back to his room.

V.

Lance’s room at the Garrison is right next to Keith’s.

Again.

Lance knows that he can walk in, knows that Keith wouldn't care. That he would love to talk.

For a six time, Lance was paused outside that door.

Instead of knocking, he walked back to his own room.

VI.

Keith doesn’t knock on the door when they get back to the Garrison after that final battle with Honerva, because he knows it wouldn’t work. Instead he grabbed a tub of ice cream from the fridge and banged into Lance’s room.

Lance shocked up. Keith can’t help but noticed that his eyes are red around the edges.

Keith sat on the edge of the bed, waiting for Lance to move over for him. Lance does and then tucked his head into Keith’s shoulder.

It only takes a moment until he’s talking, finally letting it all out. “She left us Keith. She left me.”

“She’s not gone.”

“I know that.”

“You can visit Altea anytime you want. You can visit her.”

Lance pulled away. “She broke up with me. How am I supposed to. I… can’t face her now.”

“Look Lance,” Keith said cracking the top off the ice cream container before handing a spoon to Lance. “She broke up with you. It’s over. You’re just going to have to accept that.”

“I know,” Lance mumbles.

“I know it hurts. But do you want some hard truths?”

Lance shoved a spoon into his mouth, “Why not.”

“Lance where would your relationship go with her if you were still together? Do you really see yourself away from your family? On Altea? Doing what? Watching Allura lead her people? That’s not you Lance.”

Lance wiped a tear, “I don’t know what I thought. I just knew she made me happy.”

“She made you happier when she was your friend Lance. We all know that.”

Keith watched Lance’s planitive eyes turn cold.

“I’m not trying to be mean here. I’m being honest. You’re both my friends. But it wasn’t going to work out. You didn’t treat each other right. You were never happy with each other.”

Lance spooned another chunk of ice cream in his mouth, “I know.” He scrubbed his face, “God damn it I know. That’s why it hurts so damn much. Why couldn't I do it right Keith? What’s wrong with me.”

Keith saw the tears and couldn't help himself. He wrapped an arm around Lance pulling him closer, “There’s nothing wrong with you Lance. Nothing. No one should face what we did. It wasn’t the right time for all that.”

Lance nodded and continued to eat.

Lance was scraping the carton when he spoke again, “Still. I can’t help thinking. It was my fault. I know I wasn’t there for her. I wasn’t doing my best. And I couldn’t do anything.”

“You’ll do better next time then.” Keith said squeezing Lance’s shoulder.

Lance nodded, he’s not all there, but there’s a little determination in his eyes.

“Mint chocolate chip,” Lance said.

“It’s your favorite right?”

That gets a smile, sure it was small, but it was real, “Yeah,” Lance said. He leaned heavily into Keith. “Thanks.”

VII.

There was a knock at Lance’s door. Lance was met by dark eyes and a mess of hair that he knows too well.

“Keith.”

“Hey.”

“You’re here?”

“Yeah.”

They stared at each other. Lance stomach tightened.

“What are you doing here? Er I mean. That came out wrong...I…”

“I’m doing some blade stuff for the Garrison for the next six months. We want to put another base here on this side of the galaxy,” Keith said in a jumble.

“That’s amazing!”

“They gave me the apartment next to yours, so I came to say hi, teach,” Keith chuckled and lightly bumped his shoulder.

“Speaking of teaching, I have a class I need to get to,” Lance said.

“I’ll walk you there,” Keith smiled back.

Keith didn’t stay much in his apartment, Lance had the good movie collection after all.

One night as they are watching a movie in Lance’s bed, perhaps a little closer than normal, Lance falls asleep on Keith’s shoulder.

Keith gently pulled him onto his chest and fell asleep.

They woke up tangled together. Lanced kissed the back of his neck.

“Is this okay?” He asked Keith.

Keith noded.

He never went back to his apartment after that.

VIII.

Lance remembered a warm body leaving his side, a soft kiss on his forehead, but he didn’t wake up until he smelled bacon.

Keith nudged him with his toe. Lance cracked an eye open. Keith’s hair is disheveled, but his eyes are awake, probably already had his morning coffee. In his arms is a tray overflowing with pancakes and fruit and bacon.

“What’s all this?” Lance grinned as Keith settled the tray on his lap.

Keith slid onto his side of the bed. “Oh you know. Just wanted to treat my husband,” Keith said rolling his eyes.

Lance took his folk, his ring glinted on his finger. He took a bite and moaned, “What did I do to deserve you.”

Keith leaned in and kissed the side of Lance’s head, near his ear, “Don’t make me get all sappy.”

“Happy anniversary babe,” Lance chuckled, then leaned in to kiss Keith. “I love you.”

Keith smiled against Lance’s lips, “Love you too darlin’.”

Chapter Text

Klance Au Month
February 26, 2019
Day Twenty-Six: Artists/Performers

*His Voice*

Lance has been trying to figure out Keith for a while.

Sure he was nice, they had this fun back and forth thing going on.

But He was the weirdest voice actor Lance had ever met. Sure he has a great voice. And when he delivered a line? It was like magic. His voice was super attractive if Lance was being honest. But the weird thing was the entire time he delivered his lines, his face showed no emotion.

Unusually people get into. They make faces, the get loud, they have fun. But Keith is just all awkward and stiff. Which is really annoying because he somehow has the best delivery.

And it’s freaky.

In the scene they were now recording Hunk, Lance and Keith’s characters were at a celebration. They would be saying some goofy one-liners and Lance had permission to ad-lib, which was really where his talent came.

The three of them were in one of the smaller booths working around a couple mikes, they were in a semicircle so that they could see each other and work off each other.

Lance said his first line, followed by a bantering line from Hunk and then Keith.

And of course Keith delivered the biting line with no facial expressions. Damn it was weird.

Lance came in again, “When I say ‘Vol’ you say ‘tron’.”

The corner of Keith’s mouth quipped up. His hand went to his face, covering his mouth. But it was too late, Keith was cracking up. Not just laughing, it was one of those deep belly laughs that you know won’t stop.

Someone called cut. Lance wasn’t paying attention. His eyes were on Keith and how absolutely mesmerizing his smile was.

Keith clutched his side, bending over.

“Come on, it wasn’t that funny,” Hunk mumbled.

“It wasn’t,” Keith wheezed, “it was just so stupid!”

Eventually Keith managed to pull it together and wiped a tear away. “Sorry sorry,” he snorted.

After work Lance walked to where Keith was packing up. “This was really fun today.”

Keith held out his hand for a fist bump, “You were really on point today.”

Lance thumbed behind him, “Some of us are going out to get dinner and drinks. Wanna come?”

“Sounds great,” Keith smiled.

Lance felt his face heat us, “Oh, okay then, let’s go.”

They ended up at a Korean BBQ restaurant. Lance was currently wrestling the tongs from Katie, “Yeah I don’t trust you with those.” Lance handed the tongs to Hunk. “Here you go Hunky monkey.”

“I would have been fine,” Katie said sipping on her soda.

“You put the last place on fire,” Hunk said elbowing her, “Yeah. No thanks.”

“It wasn’t that bad.”

“Do you guys go out a lot,” Keith asked. He was sitting next to Lance, who was trying not to think about how their knees and hands kept brushing.

“Yeah,” Lance said. “Sometimes Allura, Takashi, or Adam joins us. They’re always busy though.”

Lance watched as Hunk and Katie got into an argument out how to place the meat for maximum cooking. They always got stupidly scientific about it.

Keith leaned toward Lance, “Uh, there wasn’t a reason I wasn’t invited was there?” He whispers.

Lance had to stop himself from covering his ear, because damn that voice. It was like velvet and honey but somehow rough. “No. No. I mean. Uh. We just thought you were intimidating and probably had too much to do.”

“Why would you think that,” Keith asked. He puts a hand under his chin. His eyes gleam more with curiosity than resentment or anger.

“Well you like, don’t make any facial expressions. Like at all.”

“Oh. That’s because I get nervous.”

“Dude you are seriously like the the best one here. What do you have to be nervous about?”

Keith shrugged.

“Jeez. You are one weird dude Kogane.”

They joined back in the conversation with Hunk and Katie. Lance learns that Keith takes martial arts classes, that he in no way ever wants to do any in real life acting, that he would rather just sing and voice act, and most importantly that he has a dog and when he talks about her, his face lights up.

At some point Lance get’s Keith to laugh again, at a dick joke no less, and soda shoots out of his nose. It takes him about three minutes to calm down, Lance patting his back.

And Lance knew from this moment on he would do anything in his power to make Keith laugh again.

***

Everything was going great between the too. Sure maybe sometimes it took longer to get their lines done because now Keith was always snickering and laughing, but they were having more fun too. They hung out more, and Lance found himself liking Keith more and more.

The problems started at a panel. That’s when it got weird.

Lance said something about loving Keith’s laugh, and then promptly after said a joke and Keith was snickering into Lance’s shoulder. And the fans went wild.

And then tumblr and twitter literally exploded, gifs of them, photos, even theories. The whole internet was now screaming Klance.

“I just don’t get it,” Lance said one evening while hanging out with Hunk and Katie. “Like sure, Keith and I are close, but where are they getting this stuff from.”

“Dude,” Hunk said.

“You’re not serious,” Katie said.

“I mean he’s like cute, actually he’s really hot, but like, everyone knows that,” Lance said.

Hunk clicked the tv off and pinched the bridge of his nose, “You literally make goo goo eyes at him all the time.”

“I do not,” Lance protested.

“You are a disaster,” Katie said.

Lance always knew he was a little oblivious, but this whole Klance thing was really opening his eyes. He couldn’t stop staring at Keith during work. But it wasn't his fault. Keith had a cute laugh and was just really cool and pretty to look at. Okay. Maybe. Maybe he had a teeny-tiny crush. Maybe. But that wasn’t a big deal. And it wasn’t like Keith felt the same way.

Keith looked over and lifted an eyebrow at him.

Okay, maybe it was more than a little crush.

Lance was packing up his stuff when he felt breath against his ear. He startled up. Keith held up his hands in surrender, “Sorry. Didn’t mean to scare you.”

“No...it’s fine.”

“I was just wondering if you wanna get dinner.”

“Oh yeah. Let me get the gang.”

Keith’s dark eyes shifted, “I kinda wanted just us...if that’s okay.”

“Oh. Yeah. Yes. Yep. That sounds great.” Lance could feels his nerves jittering and maybe that’s what led to the one too many beers.

“Can you walk up the stair,” Keith asked as they walked up to Lance’s apartment.

“No. Help me,” Lance said snuggling Keith’s arm.

Keith chuckled, “All right you big baby.”

“Can you stop doing that,” Lance pouted.

“What.”

Lance pulled back scratching at his ear, “Your voice. You keep whispering in my ear.”

“Oh sorry.”

Lance nuzzled into Keith’s shoulder, “I don’t hate it. It’s really hot. It turns me on man.”

Lance felt Keith stiffen.

“Shit,” Lance said. “I mean. Uh. oh look here's my door, bye. Thanks and yeah…”

Lance shoved himself away and unlocked his door.

Then he felt a hand grip his elbow, holding him in the doorway.

A low laugh, hot on his neck, “I’ll see you tomorrow then,” Keith said against his ear.

Lance turned holding his ear.

Keith’s was doubled over in a silent laugh.

“That wasn’t funny.”

Keith wiped away a tear, “It was though. And you know what else?”

“What?” Lance pouted, now holding onto the door.

“You’re really cute.” Keith blushed but he smiled through it with confidence. Lance wanted to knock his head against the door. God, the way his heart was going, it was exhausting. But in the best way.

“Text me when you get home,” Lance said.

“Goodbye Lance,” Keith said.

And with that, Lance closed the door and slumped onto his couch. He grabbed the nearest pillow and screamed into it. The way Keith said his name did things to him. Lance shivered at the memory.

Lance sat up, “Holy shit. Holy shit. That was a date.” Lance fumbled with his phone. It rang twice before he heard that familiar voice against his ear.

“Hey.” He could hear the smile.

“That was a date!”

“Yes Lance,” a shiver traveled up his spine.

“Okay. Bye. Just checking,” Lance said.

Keith laughed again, that beautiful laugh. “I’ll see you tomorrow.”

Lance chucked his phone and pulled the pillow back to his face. Oh god he was in deep.

Chapter Text

Klance Au Month
February 27, 2019
Day Twenty-Seven: Fantasy

*Sapphire and Amethyst*

After his fourth attempt, Keith finally entered the shop. Keith didn’t think of himself as a shy person, per say, but interacting with strangers wasn’t his forte. Especially once Keith had noticed on his first peek through the window, that the storekeep was very very handsome.

The shop was neat and orderly but had an almost magical quality to it. Glass baubles hung from the ceiling near the windows reflecting light and colors throughout the shop. At the back of the store was a long low table filled with different ornaments, from pendands to rings, glass protecting the items from any sly hands. On the walls hung ornamented tools and weapons.

When Keith stepped into the shop, a little bell rang. The shopkeeper looked up from his place in the corner at a workbench. He had some goggles on, probably magnifying the thing in his hand, that just a moment ago he had been working on with nimble fingers.

Keith gulped.

The man was stunning, blue light cast over his face, lighting up his eyes. He had common enough features, rough calloused hands and strong shoulders from his work, brown hair and skin indicating that he either spent a lot of time outside or was originally from the southern border. Maybe it was the glint in his eyes, or the tilt of his mischievous mouth, something made him beautiful to Keith.

The man took off his goggles and placed his work on the desk and welcomed Keith to the shop, “Is there anything I can help you with today my lord? Perhaps a ring?”

“Oh. No. Er. I’m looking for a present.”

“May I ask for who,” the man said a hand on his hip, “That normally helps me to narrow down what you’re looking for.”

“A friend. A brother really.”

The man hummed a little tune and walked behind the counter.

“Well what kind of man is he? Does he need a new letter opener perhaps? Or jewelry my lord?”

Keith fidgeted with the sword strapped to his hip. He was in his civilian clothing, perhaps better clothing than a merchant. But it must have been the sword that gave away that he was a lord.

“To be honest. He’s not a jewelry sort of man. He uh. He only wears his wedding ring for the most part,” Keith said not wanting to mention that the man in question also wore a crown.

“Well then what are you doing here?” The shop owner didn’t say it rudely, if anything there was mischief in his eyes.

Keith shrugged.

“Well feel free to look around. All magical items are on the left side of the store. Non magical on the right.”

Keith peered over the counter pretending like he knew anything about jewelry or what Shiro would like.

“Your sword needs fixing.” The man said pointing at Keith’s hip.

“What?”

“A couple of the gems are coming loose. The hilt probably needs extensive work and polishing too.”

“Oh.” Keith shifted again, the weapon a heavy reminder, “I honestly don’t really care about that stuff as long as the blade is sharp and it doesn’t fall apart.”

This gets a huff out of the shopkeeper, “Do you know this blades history?”

“Er.”

The shopkeeper held out his hands. “If I may?”

“I’m not going to hand my sword over to someone I don’t even have a name for,” Keith interjected. “No offence.”

“Oh, so you do care about the blade?” He smiled, “Come on. Hand it over. My name’s Lance.”

Keith rolled his eyes and unhitched the weapon, scabbard and all, and held it out. Lance took the weapon in both hands before placing it on the counter. His fingers ran over the silver and embedded jewels of the hilt. He unclicked the scabbard to show an inch of the all black blade.

“Wow it really is Thunderstorm.”

“Did you have doubts?”

“Ehhh I was pretty sure,” the a smirk, “But it could have been a replica.”

“I doubt it’s easy to fool you.”

“You would be right on that,” Lance said getting closer to the blade, his eyes shining in admiration.

“The story?”

“Oh right. Your sword here, which you obviously have given very little care towards, is a famous blade. It was given by the king to the captain of his royal guard eight centuries ago. At the time the entire guard and many commoners were against the king, wishing for a higher pay raise, less taxes, more respect and equality.”

“And let me guess the king gave it to them.”

“No. The king stood fast. And the palace guards practically abandoned their posts, the captain at the forefront of the movement. But there was an outside assassination attempt from another country. The captain on hearing the rumors, went back to his king and saved his life. The king was so moved by this act of loyalty that he then gave his citizens what they demanded and then gifted this blade to the captain, as a testament to his loyalty and the bond between citizen and king.”

Keith’s fingers drifted to the sword, “It means a great deal then.”

“It does. And thus it must be cared for properly.”

“Can you fix it then.”

Lance took a step back from the sword as if it had burned his hands, “Are you crazy? You should get someone much more skilled than I to work on this. This is a priceless artifact.”

“Are you not a craftsman in this field.”

“I am but--”

“Have you not been trained.”

“I have but I don't have experience with this.”

“The name on the shop is Serrano. Are you not Lance Serrano?”

Lance crossed his arms, “Yes.”

“Then when can I expect this to be finished?”

Lance gave up. “Hmmmm. A week? Maybe a couple of days,” He sighed scrubbing through his hair, “I’ll want to show the blade to my blacksmith to make sure everything's still right with the blade.”

“Okay good.”

After a pause, Lance shuffled through on of the cabinets. “Here.”

“What’s this?” Keith said opening the small box in Lance’s hand.

“It’s a ring. It helps relieve back and shoulder pain. I’m sure the king could use it.”

“How did you know that’s who I was buying for.”

Lance made a gesture at Keith. “You’re obviously the captain of the guard, despite your pathetic disguise. And you obviously are buying the king a present since his birthday is next week.”

“You’re quite astute.”

That got him smiling like a cat, “I am.”

“Okay. I’ll be around tomorrow to watch you work.”

“Wait what?” The guy scruchted through his curls.

Keith tilted his head, “Can’t I?”

The pout was back. “I mean it isn't’ a real problem. But don’t you have, like, important work to do or something.”

“Since the celebration is next week, I was gifted this week off.” Keith watched the man look away. There was something cute about his flustered appearance.

“Oh okay, then fine then. Yeah it’s fine.”

“See you then,” Keith said.

And with that he walked out the door. It was only then, finally out of Lance’s presence, that he felt his whole face flush. Damn what had he started? How was he going to keep his cool watching Lance work? Guess that would be dealt with later.

***

The next morning, after breakfast and a quick sword practice, Keith made his way to the shop. Keith had never really had a break like this, always by Shiro’s side. He was a little glad he was going to see Lance, because he really didn’t know what to do with his spare time.

The shop was empty when Keith entered, but Lance emerged from the back.

“You’re here!”

“Yeah.” Keith looked up beneath his bangs, “That’s all right, right?”

Lance pulled up another stool near the workbench where the sword was already set up. “It’s fine.”

Lance sat, so Keith sat too. “I’m not going to bother you am I? I should have probably asked that earlier.”

“No. No really. It’s fine,” Lance took out a couple of weird tools, including the goggles and tinkered over the sword, “I love my job, but it’s actually gets a bit tedious, so it’s nice to talk to someone. Normally, I just talk to myself.”

Keith sat forward, watching Lance’s fingers work over a jewel.

“So what are you doing?”

“I have to replace a lot of the facinings on this. Plus I want to clean everything and replace what’s been worn away. I had the blade checked out, and it’s all good, which makes things easier.”

“What kind of stones are they?” Keith asked.

“Wow. You really know nothing. They’re amethysts, quite rare in these lands,” Lance looked up, “They are the same color as your eyes.”

Lance blushed and turned back to his work. Keith continued to watch fascinated by the work.

 

It took at least twenty minutes of arguing before Keith can convince Lance not to call him sir or my lord. And they eventually get a conversation going. He learned that Lance was from the southern border. Learned that his parents had sent him to be an apprentice at twelve,

“Didn’t see them again till I was seventeen.”

“That must have been hard.”

“Yeah. But I owe everything to them. They spent so much money to get me and my siblings different apprenticeships. But now I finally feel like I can give back to them, which is amazing.”

Lance pulled out a small hammer. “What about you?”

“Me?”

“Yeah. Captain of the guard, you run the whole shindig.” Lance looked up at Keith, his eyes were just too blue, “What’s your story?”

“My mother, I only recently met her actually. She was born in the Galra empire.”

Lance let out a low whistle. It was well known how brutal the empire was, how fraught with war and infighting.

“And she brought me here for a better life. Unfortunately someone came after her. And I was left at the castle, so that she could save me.”

“Damn. You don’t have to tell me all this if you don’t want to.”

Keith shook his head, “I don’t mind. It ends up happy. I was practically adopted by the late king. And then Shiro, the prince at that time, he took care of me, he’s my family now. The only thing I’m good at is fighting so I want to repay him with that, with my protection.”

Their eyes met, “You truly are amazing. Just like all the stories.”

“What stories?” Keith knew people talked about him, it was natural for his position of power. But the way Lance said it, he had no idea what the nature of these rumors would be.

Lance covered his mouth, “Nevermind.” He picked up another tool and goes back to his work.

***

The rest of the week goes by the same. The sword finished two days later, but Keith comes in. He says because he likes to watch Lance work, but really, it’s because he likes talking to Lance.

He finds it’s easy to rile him up, get him to argue, but like Keith, enjoys a decent bickering match. He learns more about Lance’s family and how much he cares for them. When he fixes a woman’s sentimental watch with no charge, he learns just how kind Lance is. He learns that he can do the most delicate work, but that he also has a far amount of blacksmith training and that Keith really doesn't mind watching him work over the coals with sweat and muscles.

When the week is spent, he finally gets up the courage. “Will you please go to the ball with me?” Keith manages to get out.

Lance blushes. “Er yeah. I was going to go. Can’t say no to a good party.”

“Okay. Be there then.”

“You aren’t protecting the king?”

“I will be able to slip away for a few moments I think. It’s not like his husband will let anyone lay a hand on him.”

“I’m sure,” Lance smiles, “I’ll be there.” And Keith feels his chest tighten.

Outside the shop though, Keith worries. He did it. He asked Lance to the ball. But did he think it was a date? Would Keith be able to stay calm? Sure he had been taught how to dance, but dancing with a cute boy was another thing.

He needed to relax.

And then Keith thought of Lance, smiling, beautiful, having a good time. Okay, Keith thought, He could do this.

***

He could not do this. He was freaking out at Shiro’s side, trying to find Lance in the crowd.

“Okay. You’re off the hook for tonight,” Shiro said giving his brother an amused look.

“What?”

“Keith, if I was stabbed right now, I don’t think you would care or notice. So just go find the boy.”

Keith pouted.

“It’s fine,” Krolia said stepping in, “I’ll protect the king.”

Keith gave a nod of thanks and set off into the party, which was no easy thing given that he was encumbered by armor. Sure it was more ceremonial than anything, it wasn’t a full suit of metal, but it was still heavy. His sword, gleaming at his side, also made it difficult to walk through the crowds.

But then he turned and saw him.

And everything else fell away.

Lance was just walking in through the ornate doors. He was dressed in blue, the color of his eyes, or perhaps a little lighter. The clothes were simple but still elegant and fit handsomely. What really made Lance stand out was the jewelry. One ear held a dangling pendant, both ears had cuffs and different jeweled studs. It made his eyes sparkle a deeper blue, like sapphires.

Keith tried to keep his step even as he walked up to Lance. “Hi.”

Lance’s eyes focused on him, “Hi.”

“You look…”

Lance cocked his head.

“Like you need to dance.” Keith fumbled out.

Lance smirked, “Lead the way.”

The pair walked onto the dance floor, people looked on astonished, as the two easily waltzed through the moves. It was neither a slow dance nor a jig.

 

“I think we're starting new rumors about you.”

“Why do you say that?”

“Because everyone’s staring at us.”

“Probably because you’re so handsome,” Keith mutters out.

“I think it more has to do with a certain knight who normally has a unwillingness to dance.”

“I have no problems with dancing, especially when they’re are good partners to be had.”

“You are bold.”

Keith narrowed his eyes at the snickering boy in his arms. “What do you want me to say? I’ve been with you for a week. I’m sure it’s obvious where my affections lie.”

Lance squeezed Keith’s shoulder. The song turned to something slower, “I’m glad you stuck around. It can be a feat for some. Listening to me hour upon hour.”

“I could listen to you for days,” Keith said, holding Lance’s waist, dragging them closer together.

They both blushed, perhaps from the dancing perhaps from the flirity.

“You’re everything they say about you,” Lance said.

Their eyes met. Keith felt himself falling into that deep blue.

“What do they say about me?”

“Nothing. That you’re strong, ridiculously handsome. A little hard to talk to, but incredibly compassionate and loyal.”

“Where are you hearing these things from.”

“Just the rumors on the streets, my lord.”

Keith wrinkled his nose. “Do you know what people say about you?”

“Do tell my lord.”

“That you talk to much, that you are way too nice, and way too pretty.

Lance’s breath hitched, but the startled look turned into into a smirk, “You truly have heard all the right rumor my lord.”

“I prefer when you say my name you know.”

Lance smirked, “I know.”

“Then what do I have to do to get you to use it?” Keith pushed back.

Lance paused like he was thinking a moment, “Kiss me.”

Keith leaned forward, “I think I can do that.”

Chapter Text

Klance Au Month
February 28, 2019
Day Twenty-Eight: Day of Choice
Single Dad Lance

*Lance’s Little Universe*

Lance watched his daughter on the playground. School had been over for ten minutes and she still refused to say goodbye. One of these days his daughter was going to figure out that Lance couldn’t say no to her and then he would be in real deep shit.

“Celeste. Are you ready to come home yet?” Lance called.

Her big blue eyes turned on him, man she was a like a carbon copy or him or Rachel as a child, he could even see a little of Marco, Luis and Veronica too. “Five more minutes Papa?”

“Okay, okay. But Just five,” Lance sighed and returned to the bench where a few other parents sat.

“Good try,” His friend Hunk said. It turned out Hunk couldn’t say no to his kids either, as they were also still playing in the sandbox. True it was hard when you had twins. Hunk was older then Lance by a couple years. In fact most of the parents were. Lance was used to it. He had been just shy of his twenty-first birthday when Celeste was born.

Celeste's teacher waved at Lance from the classroom door.

Lance chuckled, “Can you watch Celeste for a second? I think I’m in trouble.”

Hunk nodded and Lance approached the classroom.

“What can I do for you teach?”

“You’re Celeste’s dad right?”

“Yep. That’s me.”

“I thought so. You look a lot alike, but you can never be too careful.”

Lance chuckled.

The man did not look like Lance’s stereotypical version of what a kindgergarden teacher would look like. He was tall, buff, and had a shock of white hair that could have been stress or some weird fashion choice. But Celeste loved him, so Lance approved.

“Mr. Shirogane, what can I do for you?”

“Call me Shiro, all the kids do.”

“Okay,” Lance chuckled. He followed the man inside and they sat at his desk, probably in the only two normal sized chairs in the room.

“I’m sure you’ve noticed that Celeste is a smart girl.”

“Sure doesn't take after me, that’s for sure.”

Shiro smiled, but the look in his eye was throwing Lance off. Whatever this was going to be about, it wasn’t good news.

“Celeste is...she’s a very capable girl, but I’m worried that she isn’t keeping up with the class.”

Ah that was it. He knew what this was about. Lance nodded. “I’ve been watching her for awhile now. I mean, of course I am. I’m her dad. But what I mean is when Celeste was born, as she got older, we noticed something was off. We’ve been watching her, seeing if she’ll grow out of it, but yeah. She’s sensitive. She has a hard time with things. But she’s so smart.”

Shiro nodded. “I don’t think it’s anything to be too worried about. But I do recommend seeing someone. It could just be ADHD, or she could be on the autism spectrum. Which is fine too, but it helps to know these things so that we can work and teach her better.”

“What do you suggest?”

Shiro leaned back in his chair and grabbed a business card, “This is where I took my own son. Doctor Wimbledon is a great child psychologist. He’ll just do a couple tests with Celeste, see where she is and then go from there.”

Lance nodded and took the card. “I figured it might be time for this.”

“It’s not a bad thing, just some children have different needs is all. My son has ADHD and this really helped. He's practically a straight a student now.”

"What grade?"

"Seventh. My husband and I are very proud of him."

Lance smiled, "I bet."

"I'm sorry if this was too imposing."

Lance stood up, “No thank you. I’m glad she has a teacher that cares so much.”

Shiro smiled at him, “It’s no problem at all.”

Lance stuffed the card in his pocket and went to get Celeste. “Come on, Star. Say goodbye to Uncle Hunk and Julian and Cassidy.”

Celeste pouted by waved goodbye, clutching to Lance with her other hand. Lance finally got her to smile again once they were in the car and on their way home.

“Come on Star, won’t you sing with me.”

Lance watched her from the rearview mirror. Finally she nodded, her little ponytails bobbing. “Fine. But only because I love you.”

Lance’s heart sung. He would do right by Celeste. And if Celeste needed extra help, that was just fine.

***

The child phycologist went a lot better than he thought it would. The man was older, but still had his a child-like joy that got on well with Celeste. After about an hour, the doctor sat Lance down to discuss. Celeste played on the ground with a set of legos.

“Celeste is indeed very smart for her age, but she has sensory processing disorder, it used to be called sensory integration disorder.”

“What does that mean exactly?”

“It’s not a huge deal. A lot of kids have it. It’s often times mislabeled as ADHD as it has some similar symptoms. You may have noticed that Celeste is often stubborn or gets frustrated or overwhelmed easily. It’s just that her brain is wired differently and sometimes she gets overwhelmed by her different senses and doesn't know how to process the world around her.”

“So what do we do from here.”

“I suggest you take Celeste to an occupational therapist. You go once a week and the therapist will help train Celeste to process things more efficiently. They basically do this through games that develop problem solving, reasoning skills, and motor skills.”

So that’s what Lance did. The following Saturday, Lance and Celeste made their way to Altean Child Therapy, which Mr. Wimbledon had suggested.

Lance had already spoken on the phone to Celeste’s therapist, and he seemed really excited to get to work with them.

As they entered the building, Lance couldn’t help but notice how Celeste hid behind him. She was often boisterous, but she could get weird around strangers and strange places. She seemed to know whatever she was doing today wasn’t “normal.” And she seemed self conscious, even when Lance explained they were just going to have fun. Kids were smart though, they just got stuff. And they didn't like to do stuff that other kids didn't have to do.

A beautiful platinum blonde woman smiled from the welcome desk, “Hi are you Mr. McClain?”

Lance held out his hand to shake, “Hi. I’m Lance, and this is Celeste.”

Allura turned to Celeste, “Well it’s very nice to meet you both. I’m Allura Altea, and this is my practice. I just wanted to introduce myself. Keith will be out in a minute.”

“Awsome.”

“Celeste?” A voice called. Lance heard someone walking down the hall towards them.

And Lance felt like he was steam rolled.

Celeste’s therapist was not the what Lance was expecting at all. If he was honest, he was expecting someone a little nerdy, not ugly per se, but definitely not the fine handsome man that stood in front of him, with a low ponytail and a certain rugged look to him.

The man smiled at them and it felt like the sun was shining on Lance’s soul. Keith bent down to Celeste, who was peeking behind Lance’s legs. “Hi Celeste. Are you ready to have some fun?”

“What kind of fun?” she pouted.

“First I’m going to show you all the games we have then we can play in the foam pit, does that sound like fun?”

“Yeah!” Celeste smiled. Keith took her hand and led them to the back room. It was kind of like a gynsasm. There was a foam pit and a small rock wall and different nets and slides and things. To the right was another room with a swing and little desks.

Keith turned to Lance, “You’re Dad right?”

“That’s me,” Lance managed to get out.

Unable to hold herself back anymore, Celeste ran into the room, imediably climbing over everything.

Lance was just about to call her back when Keith touched his arm. “Don’t worry. This is just a consultation. I want her to get comfortable with all the equipment. This meeting is really just so i can talk to you for a little bit.”

“Oh, okay.”

“Would you mind telling me a little bit about your home life, just so I can get a sense for things.”

Lance turned to Keith and was once again met by those eyes, that sharp jaw, and yeah. Keep it together McClain, Lance told himself.

“We live in an apartment. It’s near her school and the hospital where I work. Despite it just being us, it can get pretty loud. We are a lively household.”

“Oh, what do you do for a living at the hospital?”

“I’m a nurse. I work for a private practitioner that specializes in heart surgeries.”

Keith took out a small pad and wrote a few notes down.

“Is that tough with Celeste? All by yourself?”

“I’m pretty good friends with the doctors I work with, so I get a pretty manageable schedule. Plus my parents and family are close by. They always help out.”

“A stable family life is really important for kids like Celeste. They really flourish under structure and schedules, especially since some kids can also develop organizational problems or the other extreme with OCD.”

“You really know your stuff Keith.”

Keith shrugged. “I try. My job is really important to me.”

Lance cocked his head, “Why is that, if you don’t mind me asking. Sorry it just seems like you have a reason.”

"It's not a problem. When I was young I had a lot of issues. I was in foster care for awhile. I got adopted at thirteen and I was a real handful. But then I got help and it changed my life. I want to do the same for other people.”

“Sounds like me,” Lance smiled. “My dad had a heart attack back when I was still in high school and I had to do something. Become a nurse.”

“If you don’t mind me asking how old are you?”

“I’m twenty-six. I was Twenty-one when Celeste was born.”

“And her mother?”

“Not in the picture,” Lance shrugged. “I can’t blame her, really. We were so young. I was ready to give up everything for Celeste. And she wasn’t. It’s understandable. But also, I can’t forgive her for leaving."

"So she's not in the picture at all?"

Lance made a face.

Keith chuckled, "Don't worry, I'm not really a strong believe in the nuclear family, but stuff like this may be something I need to talk with Celeste over, incase it bothers her."

"Celeste knows everything. Er. I didn't like bad mouth her mom, but she knows it's just us and why that is. But yeah, I made it very clear to Celeste's mother that unless she was going to do her part, she would not see Celeste any time soon.”

Keith nodded at that, "Well, you seem like a great dad.”

“Thanks.”

After that Keith, Lance and Celeste played a few games, Keith explaining what they did and why he would be doing things like this with Celeste. “You can come in for the next visit if you like, but some kids work better it they’re just with the therapist.”

Lance watched as Keith gently helped Celeste through a game, “I trust you Keith.”

A small smile came to Keith’s lips, “That means a lot.”

At the end of the meeting, Keith walked them out and gave Lance his phone number, “Next week?” he asked, with what Lance could almost take as a hopeful look.

“Yep. See ya.”

Lance strapped Celeste into the back seat and she began to prattle on and on. “Mr. Keith is so nice Papa. Are we going to see him again?”

“So you liked today? You had fun?”

“Yeah! It was a lot of fun!”

“Okay then, next week we’ll be back for more fun then,” Lance said cranking up the music.

“But I want to see Mr. Keith tomorrow too!”

“Me too Star. Me too.”

***

The next month was the same chaotic life for Lance. Celeste was always a surprise that he had to adapt to. But he loved his life and he loved his daughter. Lance could see a noticeable difference in Celeste’s behavior, but that didn’t mean she didn’t have her bad days where some sound or weird thing would throw her off.

Right now she was crying her eyes out, kicking at the sofa. “I want ice cream now!” She cried.

“Hey,” Lance called in spanish, “We do not scream. And we do not kick. Now if you don’t calm down right this moment. You will not get any ice cream at all.”

This made her wail more. She screamed a mix of Spanish and English.

Sometimes Lance knew it was just best to leave her, let her get it out of her system. Let her come to terms with herself and later be embarrassed by the tantrum. Maybe it was lack of sleep after a late night, maybe it was the baby photo of Celeste that hung on the wall, maybe it was because Lance knew that despite how much he loved his daughter sometimes he just wasn’t enough.

So Lance bent down and in a soft voice began to sing. It was a silly little song in spanish about stars and the moon and the universe. Something Lance had made up. But it was their song and Celeste knew what it meant.

She instantly stopped kicking turning to Lance in surprise. Lance held out his arms. She dragged a hand over her snotty nose and flew into Lance’s hug.

Lance felt tears on his shoulder, “I know it’s hard Starlight. I know. But I just want to protect you okay?”

“From ice cream?” Celeste snuffled.

“From everything that would hurt you.”

“But I’m not hurt. I’m strong.”

Lance patted her hair. She really was amazing. “You are so strong Star. So strong.”

“I’m sorry Papa.”

“It’s alright Celeste.”

After another tight squeeze, Celeste calmly put away her toys and Lance started on dinner.

 

***

Lance was just heading out the door for work, Celeste’s babysitter already waiting for her to wake up and take her to school, when he saw the boxes.

Somebody was finally moving into the old apartment down the hall.

Lance looked at his watch, “I still have time.” Lance thought. He knocked on the partially opened door. “Hello?”

A familiar face came to the door. Keith. In dark low rise sweats and a t-shirt, his hair a mess.

“Oh,” Keith stuttered.

Lance really wished he wasn’t already wearing his scrubs. God damn. They weren’t exactly the cutest thing, especially with his thick nurse shoes.

“Uh. I live down the hall. I saw the boxes and thought I would say hi. I didn’t know it was you.”

“Oh. Yeah. Okay. Uh. That’s cool. That it’s you.”

“Yep,” Lance said, “So if you hear screaming you know who to complain about.”

“Work?”

“What?”

“Do you need to get to work?”

Lance looked down at his watch, “Shit. Yeah. I need to go. I’ll uh. Come see you later or something.”

“Sure,” Keith called.

Damn. Lance thought. Seeing Keith. All the time? Probably seeing Keith when he looked a mess, probably able to hear, when his life was falling apart. Damn. But being this close. Seeing each other? Lance couldn’t decide what was better.

Lance hadn’t tried a relationship in a long time. Partly because of Celeste. Partly because he was a little bit of a coward, as Veronica liked to say, stupid Veronica. But it didn’t matter though. They had a professional relationship. And it involved Celeste. Lance should just not touch Keith with a ten foot pole.

No matter how cute he was, or the fact that he was so good with Celeste. Even when he said amazing things like at one meeting when he said that he thought it was stupid that adults didn’t treat kids like people. It didn’t matter that Keith had bad taste in movies just like Lance did, or that he had this cute awkwardness about him, or that he always had this adorable patch of hair that refused to be tamed. Or that his eyes were the most stunning and intense thing Lance had ever seen. None of that mattered because Lance was not going to follow his instincts. He was an adult now, and had better judgement.

***
And so Lance got really good at avoiding Keith. He let Celeste go to the appointments while he waited outside. He carefully snuck around Keith’s apartment, he made sure they didn’t bump into each other.

And just when everything was going perfectly, that’s when Lance’s body decided that he should get the flu. His mom whisked away Celeste as quick as possible, to keep her away, and Lance was practically left on his own.

It wasn’t too bad. It was more throat based and stomach based. He just needed to stay in bed and rest.

But of course Lance woke up the next day, and it was much worse. His temperature was high, he could barely get to the toilet, let alone get food for himself. He called up Hunk. Who of course was out this week because of his wedding anniversary. And Lance’s bosses and friends, the Holt siblings, were of course at work.

Lance shuffled around in his dad bag for the phone number. The only phone number left.

Lucky he answered on the first ring.

“Hey Keith?”

“Who is this.”

Lance coughed, “It’s Lance. McClain. Celeste's dad.”

“Jeez. Are you okay.”

“Uh that’s what I wanted to ask you. I don’t want to put you out, but I really need some medicine and I can’t go out to the store. Would you mind getting me some? You can just hang it on the door.”

“I don’t have work I’ll be over in a minute.”

“You don’t have to, I just need medicine.”

“Nope. I’m coming. Leave the door open.” The phone cut off.

Lance cussed to himself.

***
Lance must have fallen back to sleep because a cold hand was on his forehead. Lance cracked his eyes open, getting a gleam of purple and grey in the dark room.

“Shit Lance. You’re burning up. Should I take you to the hospital?”

“M’fine.”

“Lance. Don’t be a baby.”

“M’not. I’m a nurse. I know m’fine.”

Keith sighed, pulling his hand away.

Lance reached out, “No. Come back. You felt good.”

There’s a soft chuckle and the cold hand returns to his cheek. Lance nuzzles into it unconsciously.

Keith eventually gets Lance to eat something and take the cold and flu medication. And after a nap, Lance wakes up feeling a lot better.

***
Lance walks into the living room. Keith is sitting on his couch scrolling through his phone. Lance has to not think about how good Keith looks on his couch.

“You stayed?”

Keith looks up, “Of course. Now get back in bed you idiot.”

Instead Lance grabs one of his quilts and cocooned himself, sitting next to Keith. He’s sure he looks flushed and sweaty and just disgusting, but he’s too sick to really care about all that.

“Thank you.”

“It’s not a big deal.”

“Keith it’s a really big deal.”

There’s a pause. Keith played with the hem of his shirt, like he’s thinking. “I thought you were avoiding me.”

Lance lets out a cough, “I was.”

Eyes snap up.

“Why?”

“Cuz I was being dramatic.”

Keith gave him an unimpressed look.

“I like you,” Lance stuttered out.

Keith flushed, his whole face, like a tomato, “Then why did you…”

“I just don’t know how this is going to work.”

“We don’t have to do anything fast.”

“I know. But it’s like, you can break my heart, but Celeste. She’s my universe. If you leave. It’s going to hurt her. And I can’t have that.”

“I understand where you’re coming from. We have to think about what’s best for Celeste. But Lance. I’m not going to leave you.”

“You can’t promise that Keith.”

“I’ve had people leave me. I know what that feels like. So I’m not going to do that.” Keith sighed looking at his hands, “Look. I like you too. You’re a good person and a good dad. I don’t want to miss my chance with you. Okay? So let’s try?”

Lance sighed, “I guess I don’t mind trying.”

***

Keith stays on as Lance’s personal caretaker, even taking off of work, much to Lance’s protest. But he has to admit, the long talks, just watching tv together on the couch, Keith’s gentle touch, it’s all nice. Way too nice. Lance genuinely wonders if Keith has any flaws, that is until they start arguing over anime, and it’s proven that Keith has no taste whatsoever in anime or main love interests when it comes to a good love triangle in shows.

They aren’t even dating yet, Keith just being a nice guy and taking care of Lance’s sorry ass, but still, they fall into each other too easy. Like it was meant to be. And Lance can’t even fathom that. He’s had relationships in high school and college sure, but never one that was just this easy.

Maybe it’s because he’s an adult now, maybe it’s because he isn’t falling in love with the wrong person who was never going to accept him, maybe it’s just Keith. Maybe it’s Maybelline. Lance doesn't know. But he wants this to work. He wants to see Keith in his family.

***

Lance wakes up to a warm body snuggled against him. The sun is just coming through the blinds. Celeste is sleeping next to him, stretched out in odd angles, just like Lance sleeps. She’s clutching onto a stuffed lion that Keith gave her a year ago for her sixth birthday.

Lance bent over and kissed her head.

Then Lance leaned farther over Celeste. He brushed the bangs away from Keith’s face. He was drooling into the pillow, his arms twisted around him, since Celeste had squeezed between them last night, insisting that she couldn’t sleep, pushing Keith almost off the bed.

Lance gently tugged on Celeste’s hair, “Come on Star, it’s time to get up,” he murmured.

She started to stir, coming up burley eyed, hair sticking up everywhere.

Lance tugged her off the bed and brought her to her room to get changed.

“I don’t want to go to school.”

“Why?”

“I’m nervous.”

“What are you nervous for sweetpea.”

“What if second grade isn’t fun? What if I don’t like the teacher?”

“It will be lots of fun. You know Julian and Cassidy right? And all your other friends.”

“I want to go to work with daddy.”

“But you’ve outgrown that.” It had taken a year, but the therapist and Keith thought she was good to go. She still had her problems now and again, but she was better adapted to the world.

Celeste pouted.

Lance leaned in close, “I have a secret.”

“What?” Celeste whispered back.

“Mr. Shiro moved up the second grade this year and he’s going to be your teacher again.”

Celeste squealed in delight. And Lance managed to get her to change and brush her hair and teeth. They also did their little skin care routine together.

Lance went to the kitchen, “Go wake up dad while I start on the pancakes.”

“Pancakes?”

“Yep. Special McClain pancakes for a special day.”

Celeste ran off back to Lance and Keith’s bedroom, “DADDY. Papa has pancakes. Get up!”

Lance heard grumbling, but finally his daughter returned with Keith. “There better be pancakes,” Keith said slumping on the table.

“Pancakes are coming. Or should I make waffles?”

“No,” Keith and Celeste said, “Pancakes.”

Lance finished making breakfast, sliding a warm cup of coffee to Keith, which perked him up. And after breakfast and some rushing, the three of them got to the school.

“One more picture. Please for papa,” Lance called holding up his phone.

Celeste was rolling her eyes, something Lance swore she had picked up from Keith.

“Keith go stand with her.”

Keith slouches next to her, both pouting. Lance thinks its the best one. He makes a note to change his screen saver. Celeste’s pulls away and darts into the school.

Keith catches Lance’s hand and they go back in the car.

"Don't cry," Keith says when they get strapped in.

Lance pokes Keith's cheek. "Not crying."

"Eh. You probably will later though." Keith smirks at him.

Lance give him a sad smile back. He puts his key in the car, but doesn’t start the engine just yet.

“I heard from Celeste’s mom the other day.”

Keith sits up straighter, “Yeah?”

“Yeah. She’s got married. She’s pregnant. Says she wants to meet Celeste. Says she wants her son to meet Celeste.”

“And what are we thinking?” Keith says reaching out for Lance's hand. Lance traces his fingers over the back of Keith’s hand, touching the ring. “I’m going to ask Celeste. I think I want them to meet. I don’t want them to get all chummy and stuff though.”

“Because you are an attention whore.”

“Obviously.”

“She’s not going to love her more than you. She’s not going to take away Celeste.”

“I know. But it’s still scary. I guess that’s life.”

Keith smiled. “You took a chance on me, that worked out.”

“Yeah, but you are a cute boy. See? Big difference.”

Keith hummed and leaned into Lance.

Lance rolled his eyes and kissed Keith. It didn’t matter how long they had done this, his heart soared, his stomach swooped. He got shivers and felt warm and fuzzy. He swore colors got brighter. Being with Keith was the best. “Mmm I got really lucky with my little universe didn’t I?”

“You really did,” Keith said going back in for another kiss.

Chapter Text

Klance Au Month
Bonus Fic

*Space Ranger Partners*

Lance glides his feet through the sand, soaking up the last rays of sunshine as it sinks behind the waters. The sand radiates heat, keeping him warm despite the cooling night wind.

“Hey,” Keith says.

Lance turns to face him.

Keith smiles like he always does for Lance, only for Lance, soft and warm.

“Hey,” Lance croaks.

Keith sits next to him and bumps his shoulder, “What are you doing?”

“Eh. Just thinking.”

“Not too hard I hope. I don’t know if your brain could handle that.”

Lance doesn’t pout or get angry like Keith expects, he looks a little sad, his blue eyes turning dark as the sky turns to night.

“A lot has happened hasn't’ it? Makes me think about the what if. What if I hadn’t been on the roof. What if I hadn’t seen you and gone to help. What if I hadn’t found a crazy cat robot.”

“Well what if you were a single parent? Or a coffee shop employee. What if we lived in a different reality, or what if we all died,” Keith said. Lance gave him a perplexed look, “There are a lot of what if’s Lance, you just have to look forward okay? Cuz we would always find each other. The team, us. All of it.”

“Okay Mr. Leader,” Lance says. Then he tips forward. He drags the hair away from Keith’s neck. Lance kisses where the spine meets the skull.

When Lance pulls away, Keith interlaces their hands.

“You cold? Want to go inside?”

“Mmmm. I think I want to stay a little longer,” Lance says. He throws an arm over Keith.

Lance can’t believe how natural this is, how easy it is. How easy it was to fall in love with Keith. How he couldn’t help himself. How they just fit together.

Keith wraps an arm around his waist and they fall against each other, both of them holding the other one up.

Lance tangles a leg around Keith's, “Just so you know. I love you.”

Keith rolls his eyes, “You tell me this everyday.”

“Well I have to keep telling you. Make up for lost time.”

Keith laughs, a dark velvety sound, a sound that doesn't come often, but that Lance loves to hear. “I love you too Lance.”

“Don’t get mushy on me Mullet.”

“Jeez what do you want then?”

“A kiss,” Keith smirks.

Keith doesn’t get shy, he’s not one to back down. Instead he goes in with full force, pressing his lips firmly to Lance’s. Lance leans back, but Keith chases him, biting his lower lip. Lance allows his mouth to open. Allows the heat in. Their hands press against each other, trying to find places to hold on.

Their kiss is soft, sharp and, breathtaking. It's awkward and competitive, but somehow perfect. Lance can’t imagine himself with out Keith, without his space ranger partner by his side. And Keith can’t imagine, ever imagine, a future where he wouldn’t want Lance in it.

Lance never wants to break away. So he whispers against Keith’s mouth to stay. And Keith says he’s never going to leave him.