1 Year later — First Day of Samhain
The first thing David registers is the smell of coffee and cocoa. He inhales deeply against his pillow and hums.
Soft lips, warm and plush, press to the corner of his mouth. He smiles, rolling over and blindly pulls Patrick in for a proper closed-lip morning kiss.
“Happy Samhain,” Patrick murmurs to him, falling into their bed. He’s already dressed—his usual jeans and a blue button up.
“Happy Samhain,” David sighs, burying his face into Patrick’s neck. “We should close today, it’s a holiday.”
Patrick laughs, “Yes, let’s close the only store in Elm County that specializes in metaphysical goods on the first day of Samhain.”
“Sounds reasonable to me,” David yawns, stretching his arms over his head, knuckles brushing the cool windows that face the front of the apothecary. Patrick presses a kiss to the soft skin beneath his elbow.
“I’ll get the store open. Take your time up here. I have a present for you downstairs when you’re ready for the world.”
“Oh—” David blinks at him. “A present?”
“We’ll call it an anniversary gift,” Patrick winks, rolling out of the bed.
“I told you, no more ridiculous anniversary gifts—”
“If you think I’m not getting you something for our one year, you’ve lost your mind,” Patrick says matter of factly. He takes the coffee from the bedside table and hands it to David.
“You’re a monster,” David shakes his head, sitting up a bit to sip his coffee. Patrick gives him a warm smile and flicks his wrist—The shower in the adjoining room turns on.
David glares. “Show off,” he mutters. “Is this your way of telling me I stink?”
“This is my way of telling you to get up,” he teases, heading for the door to take the stairs down to the store. “See you downstairs. Love you!”
“Love you,” David grumbles back, trying to be annoyed but he just feels filled to the brim with happiness.
David takes his time getting ready, washing away the cold of autumn in the shower and then pulling on his Loewe pansy sweater with some jeans when he’s clean and dry. He tames and dries his hair, moisturizes his face and breezes back into the studio and out of the steam. He makes himself another coffee and Patrick a fresh tea before finally making his way down the stairs.
Patrick is helping a customer choose herbs from a local farm to fill a flute for blessings when David finds him. He gives David a thankful smile for the tea and finishes helping them.
David goes behind the register to set their drinks down and disappears behind the curtain to get some inventory boxes to backfill.
“Glad to see you’re alive,” Patrick says, coming through the curtain when he’s finished with the customer.
“Mm—” David nods. “It was a nice morning, thanks for letting me sleep in,” he says and Patrick presses up behind him, placing a kiss on his neck.
“You look beautiful,” he hugs him close. “I love when you wear color.”
“Thank you,” David smiles, turning in his hold and settling his arms over Patrick’s broad shoulders. “I still think we should close for the day.”
Patrick chuckles, leaning in for a kiss. “Compromise—We’ll close at noon and I’ll give you your present then.”
“Ah, the present,” David nods. “You know you’re making me nervous with this present,” he laughs.
Patrick hums, stealing one last kiss before pulling away. “Good,” he says, leaving him when the bell over the entry door jingles.
David sighs, grabbing the box he’d been filling and takes it out to the floor to fill the missing inventory.
The morning goes by fast and they’re not as busy as they usually are so it’s not hard to actually get Patrick to lock up when lunchtime rolls around. It is a bit of a chore to convince him to push clean up to Monday, but David succeeds anyway.
“You just want the gift,” he shakes his head at David as he takes the envelope from the register drawer to the safe in the back.
“I also want food,” David points.
“Ah, yes, forgot about food.”
They lock up and David feels giddy. He always pretends to be annoyed by the presents Patrick gets him, but he not so secretly loves them. He's never had anyone in his life so generous and thoughtful and he hopes his own present for Patrick will measure up.
“Okay,” Patrick starts as they step off the front steps of the apothecary after locking the front doors. He pulls David along by his hand, rounding the corner of the building and heading for the back lot.
David had a few garden beds built into the lot when they first moved in— it wasn’t as big as the garden at the motel, but it was nice for personal use. He wonders if the present is a new pair of gloves, or maybe imported seeds from Paris that he’d mentioned wanting a few weeks before.
Patrick gives him a hopeful smile at the closed gate, the tall wooden fence blocking their view from what sits behind it and David bounces in place, excited.
“So, Ronnie helped me a lot with this one over the last couple months, but I drew up the plans and everything. You’ll need to choose what you want inside of it, but this is just the start, okay?” Patrick prefaces.
David’s brows furrow in confusion and he nods his head. “Oh...kay,” he hesitates, but Patrick still looks giddy.
“Okay,” Patrick nods and takes a deep breath before hitting the latch on the gate.
David averts his eyes from Patrick and pushes the gate open, stepping through and his gaze has nowhere to land but the towering greenhouse nestled into the far side of the garden.
“Ohmygod,” David gasps. His entire body is vibrating and his eyes are filling with tears as he takes in the details. It’s not huge, but it’s sizable—the windows look old, and the framing hand carved. He can see Patrick must have moved some of his potted works into it already and through the glass, he notices a work counter stacked with supplies.
“They’re recycled windows— the Branbury Farm was taking down an old conservatory from the early 1900s they had on their property and I was able to convince them to give them to me. They’re still good. Jake helped with the hand carved wood and Ronnie helped me build the framing—”
David turns suddenly, colliding into Patrick and wrapping him up in the tightest hug he can muster. Patrick laughs, burying his face into David’s neck.
“This is—” David chokes on his tears and he pulls back, eyes searching Patrick’s. “I don’t know what to say,” he breathes. “How did you get this back here? I was working out here yesterday!”
“We prebuilt the walls and everything. After you went to sleep, Ronnie drove over with everything and we put it together. I was surprised you slept through it all,” Patrick laughs.
“Patrick,” David shakes his head, at a loss for words. Patrick leans in and kisses him softly, holding him close and tight. David has never loved anyone as much as he loves this man.
“Let’s go look at it,” Patrick murmurs into his lips and David nods, reluctantly pulling back and letting Patrick lead him to the greenhouse by hand.
The inside is bare, but David knows in time it will be filled with life. There’s shelves lining the walls and the workbench he noticed from outside runs through the middle of the structure.
“It’s not big,” Patrick says regretfully, and David is already shaking his head. “But one day I’ll build you a conservatory so grand, it’ll be in Homes & Gardens,” he smiles.
“This is more than enough,” David breathes, leaning in to give Patrick another kiss.
⋆⁺₊⋆ ☾ ⋆⁺₊⋆
David feels the nerves in his fingertips. Everyone is already outside, settling in for the gathering. This year, there will be no storm, or broken glass. This year will be beautiful and perfect.
Patrick slips into the motel room, dressed in a beautiful silk blue shirt and tight dress pants. He gives David an encouraging smile and slides his hands over David’s waist.
“Are you ready? Everyone is here.”
“Mmhm,” David nods. “Um— One more thing, before we start.” He turns his back to Patrick, facing the desk that used to be his mother’s vanity when they lived here. Shortly after the events of Samhain last year, David helped them find a house on the edge of the town. Alexis moved in with Ted and they were finally on their feet. So much has changed over the last year, it makes David’s heart feel full.
“I did get you something for our anniversary. It’s not as grand as a greenhouse, but I think you’ll like it.”
After their bond was made last year, Patrick gained a balance of power from David. Their souls were entwined now and so was their magic. Patrick spent the course of the year studying all he could of traditional magic and spells, fascinating over the different specialties and in a lot of ways, it reminded David of his father.
It wasn’t hard to think of what to give Patrick. His father was able to save a few spell books from Eli’s destruction—a book so old, it’s unclear what year it was bound, but somehow it’d been passed down over the generations of witches, finally ending in Johnny’s hands.
And now it would hold home in Patrick’s.
David runs his hand over the ancient bindings of the book. He’d seen it growing up when his father would study in the library. The illuminated manuscript always fascinated David—possibly started his interest in handmade objects and art.
He carefully picks it up and turns to Patrick, offering it to him uncovered.
Patrick gazes down at it in awe—cheeks flushing red from emotion. He reaches out, running his fingers over the detail of the cover and his breath comes out in a slow hiss.
“It’s been in our family for hundreds of years. It was my dad’s before. Now it’s yours.”
Patrick looks up in silence, tears in his eyes and he swallows against the lump in his throat.
“Thank you—” he starts. “So much. This means so much,” he nods frantically, taking the book.
“I love you,” David smiles, pressing his lips to Patrick’s temple as he studies the cover in detail and Patrick turns to him, kissing him deeply.
A throat clears behind them and David curses. “Foods getting cold,” Stevie smirks from the door.
“Thanks so much,” David clips, shooting a glare at her.
“Don’t want to be late on your first day, all powerful High Priest.”
“That’s not how this works—”
“Okay,” Patrick laughs, carefully setting the spellbook down on the vanity. “Let’s greet our coven.”
Stevie leaves them to take her seat and Patrick offers his arm for David to hook his hand in. They walk out to the feast together. David nods to everyone with a warm smile. Alexis gives him a wide grin, winking both her eyes at him. His father and mother look up at him with the proudest looks David has ever gotten from them and it makes his heart fill with joy.
He and Patrick stop at the head of the harvest table and David joins hands with his familiar.
“Summer is gone, winter is coming. We have planted and we have watched the garden grow, we have weeded, and we have gathered the harvest. Now it is at its end.”