The first time Morgan had seen them it had been long before S had seen them. They honestly hadn’t expected to be watching the news and feel like lightning had struck them. The shitty romance novels they’d read when they were a kid weren’t joking because, oh boy. They’d dropped a whole mug of coffee on the floor and didn’t even hear the smash as they stared in awe of their soulmate.
The first coherent thought to occur was that’s hot as this shapeshifter merely touched one of the heroes and then seizing the super strength buck kicked a chunk of debris back at the very same person that threw it at them with a crazed laugh. Like it was a game to them.
The second thought Morgan had was that there was absolutely no way they were ever going to meet their soulmate. They were barely an E tier villain and had only just upgraded from picking pockets to bank robberies and store chains. How were they meant to meet someone as powerful and let’s be real, fucking cool, as that?
The disheartening realisation came with only one rational solution; they needed to become a better villain. With that thought solidified quickly followed by yell as a shard of broken mug got stuck in their foot they cleaned up and got to work.
Two years. Two long, long years. All of their plans that had failed and a lot of them surprisingly successful – turns out if you just throw yourself into something you’ll get more wins no matter what – and even getting stably to D tier rank but still Morgan had yet to meet their soulmate.
The frustrating thing was that all it took was them was getting kidnapped. Well, the technical term is arrested, but honestly, if they aren’t ending up in jail and are being interrogated (read: tortured) for information they didn’t even have then Morgan reckons it doesn’t count.
That’s beside the point because they didn’t want to meet S like this. They wanted to give them the same shock factor they’d had. The same awe inspiring cloud that had coated their every decision for two damn years. Yet here they were pathetically chained to a steel upright morticians slab covered in blood, yelling in pain as they try to get out another witty one liner, but honestly, it was getting hard to focus.
The worst part is that before everything happens as they feel the B tier “hero” gear up with a frustrated strike, they think that maybe after everything they’ve done they might not even get to meet S in person, and that just doesn’t seem fair. The only thing stopping tears is the abject horror at the thought of showing weakness in front of this arsehole.
The doors didn’t just slam open, they shatter off of the walls, hinges with them as the exploded metal remains arc out into the room. S walks in with all the dramatic effect of the smoke and flames from the explosion they’d just caused and the B hero visibly shits himself.
“Y-you?!” He asks trying not to show the fear. S shakes their head.
“No-no. You’re done. We are not on the same level.” They say shortly and waive their hand dismissively.
Damn, they’re beautiful…and Morgan can barely see. If they didn’t know better they’d mistake them for an Angel.
Finally S looks at Morgan and it’s more disappointing than they’d imagined. S stares for a second and their head tilts studying them with their yellow eyes flickering over their battered and bruised body. With the same apathetic attitude as they treated the hero they tick their head back to the B hero, the crack of their neck audible.
It’s very rare that a soulmate is unrequited but Morgan wouldn’t be surprised if someone as powerful and intimidating as S wouldn’t have a soulmate. It doesn’t stop the sting of the rejection sinking into their chest.
Morgan’s not sure if it’s the pain of their wounds or the rejection sinking into their bones but it overshadows what S does next.
It’s interesting that the power to shapeshift takes the idea literally allowing S to become something not entirely human, nightmarish, in fact. Their hands elongate into sharpened claws, their bones crack as they shift into something larger, not another mammal, just a creature deforms and reforms as something truly satanic in nature.
“Wrong choice of victim. I will have to make an example.”
Morgan doesn’t think they’ve ever heard something so unearthly before but the screams are very human and not the kind they’ve heard before. Although Morgan hears them like they’re underwater, it really is hard to concentrate on anything when your ears are ringing; from the explosion, maybe…? Whatever happens out of their swimming vision it sounds excruciating and it is quick.
The claws come down like saws across the chains holding them and Morgan suddenly yelps in pain as they have to use their legs again. They can’t, it’s too much and they just need to rest.
The creature tips sideways as Morgan falls.
They are caught and it is soft. Warmth envelopes them as a hand strokes gently down their cheek.
“It’s alright. I’ve got you…” Morgan hears distantly as they fade into unconsciousness finally feeling safe.
They wake and everything hurts. It’s been a while since they’ve felt this rough but as Morgan tries to move every muscle begs them not to as each quake with disuse and pain. At the very least Morgan can see and the surface they’re on is more than soft enough that it has to be some kind of bed, although definitely not the shitty second-hand one they have at their flat. Just doing a surface glance of the room they’re in its much larger than a hospital room and are the walls made of ice? It doesn’t feel cold…
They gently sit up resting their back against one of the several pillows this king size bed has. A small stab of pain as they try to move their hand and Morgan realises they have an IV in their left hand, it makes them grimace as they’re now completely aware of keeping their hand still. At least they can get a better vantage of the room. It looks more like it should be an office more than a bedroom, there’s a wall and then some of bookshelves covered in hardback copies of what Morgan assumes is everything and in front of that is a chaotic looking dark wood desk with stacks of papers and various folders. The computer looks like a portable server rack with wheels that link to two monitors and Morgan wonders if that’s for a quick getaway. Their bed is definitely out of place in the room, having been placed in front of more pact bookshelves that line the walls behind them. Man, their neck’s stiff and they try to move it back and forth. They note there’s no door visibly and no windows either. Although the place has a soft blue glow emanating from somewhere…the roof maybe? Look’s solid enough.
The wall opens and in walks a tall woman her hair tied up as she carries a coffee she stops seeing Morgan awake and pulls out a small device before speaking into it.
“Boss, they’re awake.” She says simply and then pockets, what Morgan can only assume is a ridiculously expensive walkie-talkie. She walks to them confidently and then checks the IV next to them.
“Good afternoon, I’m Doctor Illiard.” The name seemed familiar but honestly Morgan wasn’t asking, still pretty confused.
“You’re safe.” She added as an afterthought seeing their pinched face.
Morgan was hit by the sudden realisation that they didn’t feel unsafe. They were in a completely unknown place, in some ice palace? Ice Prison? Ice…home…? In any case, it didn’t seem like they were about to die, still,
“Sounds like something someone about to kill me would say.” They tried for joviality and she smiled.
“I value my life, thank you.” She moving to face them.
“If it’s alright with you I’m going to do a quick check up before the boss gets back. You’ve recovered well but then again the best healers were used.” Morgan nonplussed nods and lets her go about her job, answering her trivial questions for cognition. The good doctor takes their IV out as gently as possible and Morgan only winces a little as she quickly puts a cotton ball and medical tape where the IV was.
It’s only five minutes when the wall opens again and with a quick long stride S is sat beside Morgan and not touching but is closer than Morgan had been to anyone in a long time. They still have that same neutral face but their yellow eyes bore into Morgan’s and they’re sure if they’re going to melt under the focus.
“A well-calculated recovery. You’re welcome.” She says stepping back and handing S a chart they take without so much as glancing at her.
“Thank you, I owe you one. Now get out.” She lets out a little laugh and there’s more footsteps as she leaves.
“I’ll hold you to that!” She says over her shoulder but neither break eye-contact as the wall closes again.
There is a minute of silence as they stare at each other. S’s eyes are searching for something in Morgan’s face and Morgan is trying to desperately figure out what the fuck is happening.
Am I dead? Is this heaven?
Eventually it’s too much heavy silence and they need to say something but all they can come up with is,
“Uh. Hi.” S smiles to one side and Morgan finds it hard to breathe since it’s the kind of smile that could launch an armada. They think back to that news report the cackle S had let out as they beat someone with their own power.
“Hi.” S says back softly.
“I’m Morgan.” They try because going back to sitting in silence might cause them to go insane. They need to know what is happening right now.
“I know. I’m Alex.” Alex, Alex, Alex. It’s perfect. They’re perfect. Like remembering something they already know Morgan is sinking into this moment. They could lean forward and close the gap, it’d be so easy. If only they weren’t so curious.
“You know?” They ask their brow furrowing and Alex relaxes into their smile like Morgan alone is able to calm them.
“I may have been keeping track of you for a little while now.” They said that gentle smile still on their face, as if Alex had been starving themself of seeing.
“How long’s ‘a little while’?” Morgan asked.
“Four years.” They confessed with just the slight dusting
“What?! How? When? Why?!”
Alex leans in grabbing Morgan’s attention again, they still have not touched but Morgan doesn’t miss the way Alex’s hands twitch before going into the bedsheets.
“I’ve been keeping track of you. I have a lot of resources. Four years, again. As for why…I think we both know why…” Alex holds out their hands and something crosses their face and breathed out realising it was vulnerability. Alex was letting them in and they held their breath.
In their wildest dreams! Yes! Morgan was ecstatic. Too eager, perhaps, as they launched forward and wrapped their arms around Alex only to be immediately reminded that they were in fact badly injured not days ago.
Alex took action quickly pushing Morgan backwards gently as they whimper in pain their stomach particularly complaining at them.
“Mistake.” Morgan rasped out as Alex checked them.
“The good news is that none of your stiches have come out.” Alex said rearranging their two piece hospital-esque garb to give them modesty again, not that Morgan was complaining.
“The bad news?” Morgan tries hoping they didn’t rip something new open.
“Now that I can touch you do you have any idea how hard it is not to crush you into my arms right now?” Alex said looming over Morgan their hair falling over their shoulder slightly.
Dear god, thank you. Morgan sent a quick prayer quickly beginning to believe as the soft blue of the room illuminated Alex.
“You could kiss me instead?” Morgan suggested daring and the hands either side of their hand clenched as Alex let out a sharp breath. Their head dropped and the muscle in their neck tensed as if they were trying to stop themselves from doing something.
“I-Yes. Okay. Hang on.” They steeled themselves, licked their lips and their eyes dropped to Morgan’s lips before back to their eyes as they leaned gently down careful to keep their body off of Morgan’s injured form and finally, finally, they kissed.
Alex explained it further, they’d seen Morgan the first just walking down the street years ago, at the time they’d been in hiding for a while and it had been pure coincidence. It had taken them a couple days to really come to terms with it, for starters, what kind of person could possibly be their soulmate of all people?
Never one to toe the line they decided to confront Morgan head on but when they went to find them, Morgan had done something that made them stop.
They’d been in the park on their lunch break from work and Alex had every intention of walking up in full S form, damn the consequences of hiding, and seeing their reaction. Then Morgan had saved someone’s life, a guy had been trimming trees and they fell from the ladder when their co-worker got lazy and stopped holding the bottom. Morgan had managed to parkour off the ladder and tree, catch the falling man and whip the trimmer away just before it could cut into him, not only that but had made some offhand comment about being a good juggler the charming bastard.
“Honestly, I always thought the universe was kinda cruel but seeing it give me a hero for a soulmate made me want to give the fuck up.” A hand cupped his cheek,
“I don’t think many would describe me as a hero, ya know.” Morgan smiled and Alex blushed, both of them could get used to this.
“I dated that guy, for like six months too.” Morgan mentioned and Alex’s face darkened.
“I’m aware.” They said flatly as Morgan laughed.
“Jealous.” They teased and gave them a peck on the lips.
After that Alex had stayed away, unable to be certain that they weren’t setting themselves up for failure. Universe or no universe, soulmate or no soulmate they couldn’t throw everything away, all their hard work for someone they didn’t even know. Disregard the fact that the same tree trimmer had met an unfortunate fate after Morgan had dumped him for cheating on them but that was neither here nor there.
The fact of the matter was that Alex needed to make sure they weren’t going to be hurt again and Morgan was now the most vulnerable part of them, no-one could know.
It hurt to know that the stars in the sky were unobtainable because it meant opening up a black hole that would consume them.
“It was easier to just sort of, watch you. When I could. Not constantly, that’s weird, but you know, when I could I’d check in make sure you were okay. Healthy. Happy. Whatever.” Alex said and shrugged trying to play it off cooler than they definitely felt.
“Thanks for being my guardian angel then.” They said and kissed Alex’s cheek.
“I started working harder after I saw you on TV a couple years ago, I don’t know if you noticed or anything.” Morgan confessed a little sheepish themselves and Morgan understood the entirety of that implication.
“I wanted you to notice me.” Morgan added staring at them and Alex couldn’t hide the smile that breached across his face.
“Could’ve saved myself a lotta trouble if I’d’ve known you were avoiding me.” Morgan was leaning in again and Alex let out a little laugh as they were pulled in like gravity.
They kissed and it was everything but that didn’t stop the hesitant pull back Morgan did which felt like a pit in Alex’s stomach.
“So, what now?” Morgan asked tentatively.
“If anyone hurts you I won’t stop until they’re atoms.” Let everything be consumed by the black hole, Alex had always been the type to take everyone down with the ship, not just the captain.
“God, that’s hot.” Morgan said without really thinking and shook their head as Alex barked out a laugh.
“No wait, hang on, I’m trying to be serious.” They chuckled nervously and gave the other a desperate look. Morgan waved their hands and held them out for Alex to hold who took them willing schooling their face and nodded for to them carry on.
“I mean, ah, I don’t want a guardian angel. I want my soulmate. I don’t wanna be on the sidelines, can we, uh, give it a go?” They fumbled over their words preparing for the worst.
The phantom pain of rejection they’d felt when they’d met Alex for the first time starting the leak into their chest again.
Morgan didn’t realise they’d looked down until hands on either side of their face gently but firmly pulled their head up so they were looking into those intense yellow eyes again.
“We’re in my office.” Alex said definitively and honestly, not what Morgan had expected.
“Right, um?” Were they just going to be confused a lot now, was that Morgan’s life now?
“I could’ve taken you to the hospital. Dropped you off and let them heal you. Watched from afar.” Alex continued carefully as if choosing their words very carefully.
“Instead I took you to the securest place on Earth right by my side and got the best doctor’s to heal you. I watched you every day until you woke up and only then did I let myself go anywhere else waiting for you to gain consciousness.” Alex stared and Morgan was starting to get addicted to that feeling of pure concentration centred on them.
“I thought I was going to lose you. That’s unacceptable, you’re mine.” Alex’s grip tightened on their face and Morgan melted in their hands, their heart pounding in their chest.
The desperation in their voice was filling in the blanks, it felt like the same torment Morgan had felt since the moment they’d seen Alex on that news report.
Two people had been suffocating for years and the answer had been right there.
How can you walk away when the person you’re meant to be with is right there?
There is no way forward except together, take the hand of the person right there.
Morgan put their hands on top of Alex’s and gave them a watery smile.
“Guess I’ll just have to move in then.” Morgan shrugged and they both laughed a little hysterical because the dam had been broken, the water was rushing and could it be this wonderful feeling be happiness?
When had they both last been this happy? It doesn’t matter, they’re this happy now and they have metaphysical proof that it’s right. This is where they should both be.
“I’m going to have to get stronger.” Morgan commented offhandedly to a single quizzical eyebrow raise from Morgan who had taken up residence beside them while they were reading through some hero’s lair blueprints.
“Well, you know, can’t be getting kidnapped all the time. Don’t want to make you worry, you know.” Morgan shrugged thinking about a new work out strategy now they had access to a private gym. Alex paused and looked at Morgan before something flittered across their face that looked like an, ah shit you don’t know yet face.
“I don’t think that’ll be a problem…” They grimaced and Morgan smiled poking their cheek,
“Why not?” They said snuggling up beside them intrigued.
“I might’ve…” Alex shrugged mumbling something and Morgan laughed,
“Oh come on, what did you do?” They asked putting their head on Alex’s shoulder and blowing their hair out playfully.
“I, might’ve, strung up the heroes involved. Like. Publically. Medieval style. It’s their own fault they wouldn’t tell me where you were, those damn heroes. I gave them a choice!” Alex furrowed their brows looking indignant at the blueprints.
“Are you saying that the big bad villain did a big bad villain thing?” Morgan teased and when Alex turned their head to scold them they kissed them, silencing whatever the S tier was about to say. A handy trick certainly.
Alex turned back to the blue prints and Morgan settled back on the bed reading of the first editions they harvested from the shelf behind them. Neither were actually reading, Alex was thinking and Morgan was waiting to see what they’d say.
“So it doesn’t bother you then.” A statement that Morgan did not refute.
“Did you miss the bit where I tried to become a higher tiered villain so I could successfully woo my soulmate? I was gonna go full S tier if you’d’ve kept up.” They smiled and heard Alex turn to them, though they looked down at the page and turned it to pretend they were still reading, though they absolutely weren’t. A hand was placed on the book and they looked up at Alex innocently who was just boring into them with those intense beautiful eyes.
“Did you just say ‘woo my soulmate’ unironically?” Morgan put their hand ever so nonchalantly on top of Alex’s and shrugged meeting their eyes.
“You’re incredibly beautiful.” They dropped their voice and enjoyed seeing that blush come back as Alex looked away unable to take the compliment. Something Morgan decided would need to change, certainly.
“Are you trying to woo me?” Alex said after a moment, their voice a little choked and then they cleared their throat their blush deepening. Morgan leaned forward tightening their grip ever so slightly on Alex’s hand.
“Is it working?” Morgan whispered into their ear and got a beautiful whine from Alex who very suddenly pushed them back with a hand to their face.
Alex didn’t stop until Morgan was fully pressed against the bed hand still covering their face, they didn’t exactly fight it.
“You, need to stop. You are very injured and need to recover and I am one person.” Alex said breath rushing out and Morgan laughed,
“Okay, okay I give. I’ll be good.” They said tapping the hand on their face that lifted. They looked at Alex making no real effort to hide their smile.
“Good, now don’t make me restrain you.” Alex realised what they’d said immediately but it was far too late,
“Oh, kinky.” Morgan said and Alex got off the bed grabbing the plans with them.
“That’s it, I’m working at my desk. You’ve lost cuddle rights!” They said going to their desk and sitting down defiantly.
“No baby, don’t be like that! I’ll make you some toast!” Morgan laughed and could tell the reference was lost on Alex who gave them a weird look.
“Don’t even think about getting up.” They said as a warning and then added,
“Rest, if you laugh too much you’ll pull something out.” With distance it seemed Alex could calm down a bit and Morgan sighed out happily lying back on the bed,
“Fine. But come back when you’re done, I refuse to give up cuddle rights.” Morgan didn’t get an answer and after a moment looked back at Alex who was actually reading the blue prints and making notes again.
“Deal. I’ll be quick.” They said like a promise and Morgan smiled, grabbing the almost discarded book and picking it up again.
It was less than an hour later when they heard padding across the floor and Alex started to crawl back across the bed.
“Just a nap, then we can get something to eat.” They said and Morgan settled easily into their arms resting their head on their chest, the book now lost to the sands of the massive duvet.
“Sounds like a plan.” Arms settled around them and held them close.
It was hard to remember what it felt like to fall asleep without, all it took was a bit of time, to get what they both wanted. Like everything worth fighting for it takes time.