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Bower

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Eliot has a stunning bower. Like, Lord of the Rings: the Return of the King (2003) levels of production quality, Bollywood historical drama level opulence, absolutely problematic caveman levels of soft furnishings in which to hold Eliot down and fuck and bite and protect what’s ours—

It’s a good nest, okay? And Eliot knows. God, does he know that just letting Quentin in to snuggle while they do their class reading in this perfectly formed queen-sized burrow of Jersey cotton and beaded silk canopies and strange furs that cannot possibly have come from somewhere as mundane as IKEA makes him want to purr and prowl and roll over to reveal his soft underbelly. Eliot likes that, likes that Quentin appreciates the privilege of cuddling (and making out, and fucking) in his nest. He wants him there, with him. Eliot wants at least some form of Quentin in his nest permanently, and Quentin knows this because if he were to dig around in the softness (which he would never do, an Omega’s bower is a sacred construction), Quentin would find one of his raggiest sweatshirts, nestled in beside Eliot’s own clothes and Margo’s second favorite bathrobe. 

Knowing that is one fucking hell of a feeling. It’s a feeling Quentin’s waited for his whole life for. A feeling Eliot sauntered in and bestowed upon him like the benevolent despot he knows he is. 

Case in point, the origins of the sweatshirt gifting:

“Can I have that?” 

Quentin finishes pulling his hoodie over his head, pushing his hair out of his eyes. It’s three PM on a Tuesday, and Quentin and Eliot have been fucking for about three weeks. Fucking with feelings. Fucking with “Getting to know each other but also we already live in the same house and also you smell so good” kind of feelings. 

Anyway, Quentin just came in from a run. Margo and Eliot are on the love seat sharing a vape (no one’s perfect) with some variety of Josh’s non-FDA juice. Eliot is barely looking at him. It takes Quentin a second to realize Eliot even spoke. Or to take in his outstretched hand. 

It’s casual. Elegant. Can I have that? 

“Uh, this?” Quentin holds up the aforementioned garment. “It’s kind of sweaty.” 

It’s a good thing you’re cute, says Eliot’s expression, still absolutely nonchalant. “Yes, I’m aware.”

Behind him on the loveseat, Margo’s eyes are absolutely murderous as she silently communicates to Quentin give him the sweatshirt you unbelievable moron so clearly Quentin has to wonder if she’s using telepathy. She uses her vape pen to jab at the offending clothing article and then upstairs, which after several repetitions manages to penetrate even Quentin’s level of instinctual dumbassery. 

“Oh, for your— oh. Yes. Um...yes! Definitely. Here. All yours.” 

Quentin practically shoves the hoodie in Eliot’s arms. Trying to be cool. Should he be cool? Is this a cool thing, or a serious thing? Should he be on one knee? Should he scent it?

Eliot ignores Quentin’s crisis and snatches up the sweatshirt. Without another word he trots up the stairs like a Yorkie with a stolen sock, practically thrumming with glee, and Quentin can only listen with his heart racing to the symphony of rustles, chimes, and soft contented Omega huffs emanating from Eliot’s open bedroom door as part of Quentin—him! Quentin Makepeace Coldwater!— is woven into Eliot Waugh’s legendary bower. 

So that, you know, pretty much gives the status quo of things.

Quentin is very aware that he isn’t porn’s idea of an impressive Alpha. He’s a nurturer , he’s been informed by more than one cheerfully condescending guidance counselor. 

(“He’s a nurturer,” Eliot sighs blissfully to Margo, all three of them buzzed in the smoke hazy common room. Quentin tucks that away, cheeks warm as he burrows into Eliot’s side and lets himself be distracted by how sparkly Margo’s earrings are.)

Whatever non-porno version of an Alpha Quentin is, Eliot has selected him, and four months later they’re still going strong. Eliot, whose every idiosyncratic whim is a firework, a cinnamon candy burning Quentin’s tongue; every smile and pout a drop of cool rain against his overheated skin. Eliot whines and it’s Quentin who wants nothing more than to show his throat. 

This is the happiest Quentin has ever been. This is the happiest Quentin ever will be, for however long it lasts, because Quentin has magic. He’s in a good place with his meds, aided by the aforementioned magic to all but eliminate pesky side effects. But more than any of that, Quentin is happy because against all odds, it turns out Quentin is Eliot Waugh’s preferred alpha company. 

His lover, Eliot drawls with sadistic glee.

His boyfriend, Quentin can barely whisper without going beet red and growly with pleasure. 

Yeah. Things are good.