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An unexpected vist

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Pitter patter pitter patter

The people of Stellis watched as the bright sunny day they were enjoying slowly shifted to a gloomy rainy Saturday afternoon. At first it was a small unnoticeable tap tap tap on the windows of the buildings. Which eventually evolved into the pitter patter sounds of an incoming thunderstorm. Plans were canceled, meet ups rescheduled, people cursed as they ran across the streets back to their homes with books or various items of clothing over their heads. Using anything and everything to shield themselves from the rain falling from above. But then there were some who were enjoying the change in weather, relishing in the calming sounds of the rain hitting their windows, creating the perfect atmosphere for a lazy afternoon of relaxing.

None of this was noticed by Vyn, as he absentmindedly drank his tea next to the fireplace in his study. Having finally managed to take some time off for himself after a hectic past 2 months. Vyn had considered asking MC to join him on a walk around the city to spend some time together, but decided against it due to the change in weather. Now staring at the fireplace next to him, not for the first time this evening, he wonders why he still keeps it around. With the increased evolution in technology all across the world, he could have long replaced it with something more modern and effective. But part of Vyn still couldn’t bring himself to get rid of it, maybe it's because of a past he still hasn’t managed to let go of.

The images of an intimidating large building come to mind, a young boy huddling next to a fireplace. Reading fantasy stories of a life he wished to live in. The notes left behind by his father long turned to char and ash, consumed by the ever glowing fire. The young boy found comfort in the fire, it gave him warmth, light, and a safe refuge from the world.

But that's a story for another time.

Cutting his train of thought on the fireplace short, Vyn starts to think about the events of the past two months. The recent influx in patients at the clinic, along with a concerning increase in NXX cases had filled his schedule with no gaps for leisure. Although, Vyn wasn’t the only one to receive an increase in workload. All of the people in Stellis seem to have accumulated their own small mountains of work. Artem had been doing more overtime, coming into Themis on weekends instead of taking them off. A spike in injustice and crimes had put the whole agency under pressure. While Pax was currently under fire due to false accusations that piqued the media's interest. All the while, Marius had been trying to secure some important business deals, so he had to try and keep the whole situation stable. Luke had gone radio silent, having only graced everyone with a few words, mostly about the government. He had given MC a more detailed response, but that was between those two. Vyn would often speculate what words Luke used to reassure them, washing all their worries away, dissipating into nothing.

His thoughts slowly drift over to MC, the tea on the table next to him long forgotten. Vyn turns his focus to the roses next to the window. Roses. They remind him of the first time he met them. Though the meeting may have been staged and used for him to assess if they were qualified enough for NXX, it didn’t stop him from ironically experiencing the very thing he despised the most, love at first sight. Vyn had already spent countless hours pondering this situation, analysing and questioning if what he experienced was an illusion, a trick. It was also because of these countless hours of pondering that he was able to conclude that what he felt was pure and utter raw emotion. MC had wedged themselves into his heart. But he didn’t quite know how to feel about this discovery just yet.

It’s not that he doesn’t know what these things he feels for them are. He knows exactly what’s happening to him. It was just that…to tell the truth, he’s scared, terrified even.

Thinking back to his father, he’s reminded of how he thought that all love at first sight meant was giving your all to someone and only to be crushed and left with nothing in return. He had promised himself that it would never happen to him. Before this, Vyn couldn’t even imagine a world where he would fall prey to the thing called love. But here he is, completely, utterly infatuated with MC. Most of the changes in his actions aren’t done consciously (or at least he tries to convince himself they aren’t). From the amount he wants them to see through the cold exterior he puts up in front of everyone, to the small bits of vulnerability he shows here and there. Where along the line did he start actively trying to show them the things he never thought he would be able to share with anyone?

Ever since he met them, they continued to infect his thoughts little by little, day by day. He didn’t pay much attention to it at first, since it was only fleeting thoughts. The normal amount (or so he thought at least) of time he would spend thinking about someone that interested him. Vyn failed to notice how his thoughts about MC went from ‘how are they going to react to this situation’ ‘will they be able to make the correct decision’, to `MC would like this music piece’ ‘should I buy this for them?’ 'how can I make them smile’ and ‘how can I make them happy.’

Never before had he experienced warmth or excitement when meeting someone. Eventually these newfound emotions MC was able to uncover, sparked interest. Interest in what else he could discover about himself through them. Jealousy that had never appeared before revealed the hold it had on his actions, showing its head during the PUA investigations. The feeling of wanting to protect someone whenever danger was near them, something he never had the urge to do to anyone. All of these things were foreign to him, despite having seen many others experience the effects of love. Seen the effects it could have on someone's physical, mental and emotional health. The lengths it could drive someone to, as well as treating the backlash of these actions. He had seen it all. But now it’s happening to him, he doesn’t know what to do. The only thing that is sure in his mind is that MC made him feel alive.

Some part of him wants them to take responsibility for this, but that’s a pathway he isn’t ready to go down just yet.

A sudden flash of light outside the window followed by the low rumbling of thunder allows him to snap himself out of this train of thought. Albeit slightly embarrassed at how easily his mind could wander from thinking about work to MC, he tries to focus on what he was doing before. Picking up his cup to take a sip but being disappointed by the now cold tea hitting his tongue. Sighing, he gets up and heads toward the kitchen to boil some water to brew more tea. After putting the kettle on, Vyn made his way towards the library hoping to find some books to entertain himself with for the afternoon.

The fruits of Vyn's travels are certainly his ever growing collection of books that fill the room, many of which are extremely old. The age of these books is only accentuated by the yellow light that gives the room a warm glow, causing everything in the room to look more ancient than it already is. All of this along with the sound of the rain outside paint the perfect atmosphere for a relaxing afternoon spent reading. Although it sounds quite appealing, Vyn prefers to sit next to the fireplace. After browsing for a bit, he finally finds a book that he’s satisfied with and makes his way back to the kitchen.

Or at least those are his plans until he hears the frantic sound of knocking coming from his front door. Slightly irritated, he walks towards the door ready to turn away whoever is there, or give them an indifferent stare until they leave voluntarily. Opening the door, the words of rejection that are on the tip of his tongue suddenly get pushed back into his throat after he sees who’s on his doorstep.

It was MC.

The book in his hands falls onto the floor with a quiet thud. Vyn stares at MC with a silent look of shock on his face before composing himself a few seconds later.

MC was currently standing on his doorstop, soaked to the bone with their hair and clothes clinging onto them like life depended on it. They were shivering non-stop, but still managed to give Vyn a weak apologetic look and a quiet “sorry... for..dropping in... like this Dr.. Richter..” Before promptly collapsing into his arms. Now, Vyn would say he is quite a level headed person in times of stress or crisis, but in that moment his heart stops. All he registers is the feeling of MC passed out in his arms, until he realises how hot their skin is. Bringing himself back to reality, he starts thinking rationally. Feeling their forehead and pulse, he discovers that they’re running a fever. Completely burning up despite how frigid they should be feeling having been in the rain for who knows how long.

Securing them in his arms, Vyn carries them over to his fireplace. After doing a quick checkup on them, he breathes a sigh of relief after realising it's just a fever. No other external wounds or obvious symptoms of anything else. He silently concludes that they just spent a bit too much time in the rain. But the question now was why did they do it? Massaging his temples Vyn decides to push his questions to the side until after MC recovers, their health is more important than his curiosity. Taking his jacket off and draping it over their body, he props them up in a comfortable position near the fire and hurries off to collect some blankets.

By the time he’s back with some herbal tea, towels, and warm blankets MC has already awake. Vyn can tell that they are desperately trying to fight the urge to pass out, probably wanting to explain themselves before they fall asleep. But before they can open their mouth, Vyn puts a finger up to their lips, preventing them from speaking. He shakes his head, bringing the herbal tea up to their lips. Vyn then proceeds to coax them to sleep with honeyed tones. Succumbing to exhaustion and Vyn’s sweet words, MC allows themself to once again pass out.

Vyn carries MC over to the futon sofa bed that he keeps in his study due to how frequently he needs to stay up late working. Setting them down and admiring them for a few seconds, he pulls the blankets over their body, adjusting them a bit so that they are in a comfortable position. Finally, he brushes some hair out of their face, gazing at them as their chest rises and falls. Vyn is still going to have a big chat with them about not walking in the rain, along with asking why they were in the rain in the first place, and why he found them at his doorstep. But for now, he is going to enjoy their presence. All his worries dissipate into nothing.

Watching the rise and fall of MC’s chests and listening to the sounds of the rain outside, he too slowly falls into a blissful sleep.

Pitter patter pitter patter