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Blue Hydrangea

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Levi sat down on the small mattress in his new room. There wasn't much in it; a few worn out outfits hanging in the closet, a box with his personal things, and his school backpack. He didn't have much and the small amount made this room look giant and empty.  

The new 2 bedroom apartment Levi and his mother had just moved in to was by no means large or lavish but next to the one they had just moved from it was it was a palace.   

It was a clean, well-kept basement apartment in a nice looking house. The street was quiet and the neighbourhood was safe.  

Levi had no idea how his mother could afford this place, their last apartment was a run down, one bedroom; bad for even the poor part of town. Unfortunately he was 8 years old and his mother didn't discuss their financial situation with him, despite him probably understanding it better than she did herself.  

"What do you think?" Kuchel asked from the doorway, a small smile on her face.  

"It's big." Levi said simply.  

"You'll get used to it." Kuchel laughed lightly.  

"Can I just sleep in your room?" Levi whispered.  

"Levi, you're a big boy in your own room, shouldn't you be excited?" Kushel said sitting next to him and wrapping her arm around him in a light squeeze. Levi shrugged and looked at his feet.  

"At least give it a try. If you get scared you always know where to find me." She said. Levi leaned into his mother's embrace for a moment; rubbing her back as her simple throat clearing turned into a small fit of coughing. It was a regular thing; Kuchel had had mild health issues for a long as Levi could remember which was partially why he was as glad as he was confused about her new job and their new home. 

 As Kuchel caught her breath and gave Levi a soft smile there was a knock on the door. She raised her brow in confusion before the two made their way to the door; opening to reveal a brown haired woman holding a dish, and a small boy beside her. They had nearly the same face and identical smiles 

 

 

"Hi Kuchel! I hope this isn't a bad time, we wanted to welcome you." The woman said cheerfully. 

"And we made dinner!" The young boy added cheerfully. Levi eyed him from behind Kuchel. He was skinny, his limbs were too long, and he smiled too much, but he did have the most peculiar eyes Levi had ever seen. They were green but more of a mixture of blue and green; like looking into an endless ocean. They were almost too big for his small face but so captivatingly beautiful that it went unnoticed.    

"Carla! Come in!" Kuchel exclaimed, clearing her throat and stepping aside to let them in.   

"Levi this is Carla, she's our landlord and the lady that helped get me my new job." Kuchel explained. 

"My god Kuchel, he looks just like you!" Carla exclaimed before leaning down to look Levi in the eye. "It's so nice to meet you Levi." She smiled. Levi held onto his mother tightly, unsure how to react around this friendly woman; where he used to live it had been unsafe to do so easily. 

"Likewise." He said quietly. 

"He's a little shy." Kuchel explained with a smile. 

"Oh that's alright, I'm sure he'll warm up to us in no time, Eren is very excited to have a new friend." Carla explained and the small boy smiled brightly. 

"Say Hello to Ms. Ackerman and Levi, Eren." She added 

"Hi Ms. Ackerman, Hi Levi." Eren said happily; large eyes focusing on Levi.  

"You can call me Kuchel, Eren. Now Levi you be nice to Eren, he's younger than you." Kuchel warned. Levi nodded shyly.  

"Would you like some tea?" Kuchel asked, leading them to the kitchen. 

"Hey, can I see your room?" Eren asked Levi, ignoring the conversation their mothers were already engrossed in. 

"But we're having tea..." Levi said almost desperately and Eren wrinkled his nose. Levi glanced over to his mother who gave him a look and a nod to go on. 

"Come on." He sighed, leading the other boy down the short hallway and into his new room. 

 

"It's... nice" Eren said looking around at the bare walls and the small mattress laying on the floor without a frame.  

"I don't have very much." Levi said quietly, looking at the floor.  

"That's okay! You can come up to my room and play with my toys whenever you want!" Eren said happily as he flopped down on Levi's bed.  

"Thanks.." Levi said hesitantly, watching Eren closely. He was odd; happy and excited even in Levi's boring, bare room. He seemed to be always smiling, which made his gigantic eyes sparkle. Levi felt like he should be annoyed by this boy, but he wasn't and he didn't know why.  

"How old are you?" Eren asked as Levi shyly moved to sit beside him on the bed.  

"Eight." He said simply.  

"Really?! But you're smaller than me! I just turned 6!" Eren shouted. Levi glared at him.  

"I am not smaller than you. We're the same size. Not my fault you’re like a 6 year old troll" He snapped. Eren just laughed. 

"You're funny!" He said with another smile. Levi's eyes widened as he felt his cheeks heat up and he looked away quickly. 

"Hey, maybe you're an Omega! Omega's are small aren’t they?" Eren said, Levi furrowed his brows. 

"Boys aren't Omegas!" He said though he was in no way sure of that statement, all he knew was being an Omega was not a good thing. 

"No? Oh." Eren said, losing his smile as he thought about it. 

"I don’t know. Are they? I don't want to be one, my mom is one and she said being an Omega is hard. She usually comes home with bruises and we lived in a bad neighbourhood." Levi said quietly. 

"My mom says Omegas are precious and they need to be protected! Hey maybe I'll be an Alpha!" Eren exclaimed. Levi raised an eyebrow, unsure how the two were connected. 

"You can be my Omega, I'll keep you safe!" Eren said smiling brightly. Levi felt his ears turn pink as he looked at the younger boy with wide eyes. 

"O-okay." Levi stammered, looking down at his hands as they fell into a comfortable silence. 

 

 

"I like your hair." Eren said suddenly, reaching over an flicking Levi's nearly shoulder length hair. He was all over the place, it was hard to keep up. "My mom won’t let mine grow out. My friend Armin has long hair too but it's blonde and not as pretty as yours." Eren rambled happily. 

"I like your eyes." Levi blurted awkwardly; unsure how to handle the compliments and the rambling boy beside him.  

"Thanks!" Eren beamed. "Hey I have a Super Nintendo, wanna go upstairs and play Donkey Kong?" Eren asked jumping off the bed in excitement. 

"Are we allowed?" Levi asked. Eren stopped his bouncing, a concentrated look on his face. He was so expressionate but with the attention span of a Goldfish. Levi found it almost endearing, his lips turning up into a slight smile.  

"I don't know. I'll ask my Mom." He said before dashing out of the room. 

 

 

 

"Of course we can. Kuchel would you like to come up for dinner. That casserole will keep until tomorrow, we'd love to have you." Carla was saying as Levi made his way into the kitchen. 

"That sounds lovely. If it's not too much trouble." Kuchel said, Carla waved her off and led them all to the upstairs portion of the house. 

Eren took Levi's hand and pulled him toward the living room where he kept him game console. 

"Do you want to be Donkey Kong or Diddy Kong?" Eren asked. 

"I..um. I'm not sure. I've never played Super Nintendo before." Levi said hesitantly. 

"Oh. Well that's cool. It's not that hard, you can be Diddy, he's second player but we can switch out sometimes when you get better." Eren said. Levi nodded and Eren set it up. 

It didn't take him long to figure out how to play and soon they were flying through the levels, Levi playing first player most of the time. Eren didn’t seem to mind either, he spent the time laughing and shouting and just having a great time playing with Levi. Levi couldn't help but to smile and laugh quietly along with him, he had never had an actual friend before. Eren didn't seem to mind Levi's standoffish-ness, he seemed to see past Levi's shyness and naturally indifferent neutral expression that most people thought was weird and unsettling for a young child. Levi was starting to hope that this turned into a real friendship. 

 

 

 

When Carla called them for dinner Eren took Levi by the hand again to pull him towards the kitchen. Eren insisted they sit as close as possible as their mother's laughed at Eren's excitement, accompanied by Levi's blushes.  

Carla and Kuchel seemed to be hitting it off as well, chatting adamantly all afternoon and though dinner. After cleaning up the dishes they sat down with coffee while Eren brought Levi to his room to play with his toys.   

Levi hadn't realized he had fallen asleep after they made their way back to the living room and turned on a movie. He found himself on the couch, Eren's chest curled against his back and arms holding him tightly as he snored lightly.  

"Aww, aren’t they sweet." Carla said as Kuchel shook Levi awake gently. 

"Baby, it's time to go home." She whispered. Levi rubbed his eyes and looked up at his mother, Carla, and a man with long hair and glasses, he hadn't seen before. 

"Looks like Eren made a new friend." He said with a fond smile as he bent over to pick Eren up off the couch.  

Eren woke as his father was detangling him from Levi.  

"Hey, where's Levi?" He said in sleepy panic, wiggling to get down.  

"Eren, Levi has to go home now." Carla said gently. As soon as Eren's feet touched the floor he dashed towards Levi; wrapping his arms around him in a tight hug.  

"Will you come over again tomorrow?" He asked. Levi stiffened in surprise  

"Eren, don't pressure Levi. He might not want to come over every day." Carla said gently.  

"I'd like to... If that's okay." Levi said nervously, moving his hands awkwardly to wrap around Eren.  

"Of course it is, you're welcome here whenever you want." Carla smiled  

"Great! I'll see you tomorrow!" Eren said letting Levi go with a big grin before Levi walked over to his mother. 

"Thank you so much for dinner. And everything else." Kuchel said giving Carla a friendly hug. Clearing her throat harshly afterwards, looking embarrassed. 

"No problem at all! I hope we can become great friends!" Carla smiled. 

"And Kuchel, you should let me take a look at that cough tomorrow!" Grisha said with a smile and a handshake. She just nodded and led Levi out. 

  

 

"Oh Levi, you forgot this." Eren said holding out the stuffed horse Levi had been cuddling with most of the evening.  

"That's yours." Levi said with slight confusion.  

"You like him and you don't have very many toys, I want you to keep him." Eren smiled.  

Levi stared at him in surprise for a moment before slowly reaching for it.  

"T-thanks." He said quietly, giving Eren a small smile, holding the toy tight to his chest as he and his mother walked back to their new apartment. It was looking a lot better to Levi now than it had a few hours ago.  

 

 

"So you and Eren seemed to get along." Kuchel said as she tucked Levi into his bed, sitting on the edge and leaning over him. Levi cuddled his new stuffed horse and nodded up at his mother. 

"Good, maybe you two will become good friends." Kuchel said, kissing his forehead and moving to get up.  

"Mom?" Levi asked quietly, Kuchel turned back towards him waiting for the question. 

"Can boys be Omegas?" He asked.  

"They can." She said simply. 

"Do you think I will be one?" He asked quietly. Kuchel's eyes softened and she petted Levi's hair. 

"I'm not sure. We won't find out until you're older but you do have some of the physical signs of Omegas." Kuchel said. 

"Eren said he would be my Alpha." Levi said, avoiding his mother's eyes as he felt the blush on his cheeks. 

"Did he now?" Kuchel smirked. 

"He's weird." Levi tried to diffuse his embarrassment. 

"I think Eren will make a very good Alpha; he comes from a very nice family who help people like us. I met Carla at the grocery store and she has done so much for us. She got me my new job at the hospital flower shop and offered their basement apartment for rent we can actually afford." Kuchel explained, which answered the questions Levi had been wondering for the last week.  

"And maybe Eren's dad can fix your cough. He's a good doctor right?" Levi asked. Kuchel just smiled at him and kissed him goodnight. Levi hugged his horse a little tighter and fell asleep in his new bed. Maybe his room wasn't so bad, not with someone like Eren upstairs anyway. 

 

 

 

The next day Levi was itching to go play with Eren again but he was too afraid to go up on his own. Eren told him to come over again but what if he had forgotten? What if Eren said things in the moment but didn't actually mean them? What if Eren realized Levi was a neurotic 8 year old who spent too much time overthinking things. 

"Levi, he invited you over, why don't you just go knock on the door?" Kuchel said from the kitchen where she was putting away the little belongings she had brought with them. 

"What if he doesn't want me to come over anymore?" Levi asked, pacing around the room. 

"I'm sure that's not the case. Would you like me to walk up with you?" Kuchel asked. Levi thought about it for a moment, almost agreeing to it before his thoughts were interrupted by a knock on the door.  

Kuchel hurried to answer it, opening it to Eren who looked worried. 

"Levi! I thought you were coming over." He said. 

"I..um. I was. I didn’t know when you wanted..." Levi stammered as Eren's face broke out into the familiar smile. 

"Great! Come on! My friend Armin is over!" He said taking Levi's hand and pulling him through the door. 

"If your friend is over I can stay home." Levi said insecurely. 

"No! He's my best friend, you have to meet him!" Eren continued to pull; he was surprisingly strong for a 6 year old. He led him up to his house and into his bedroom where a small blonde boy; even smaller than Levi was sitting on his bed looking at a book. The boy looked up and smiled when they came in the room. 

"Armin, this is Levi. He's going to be my Omega someday!" Eren grinned proudly, making Levi blush. 

"I'm not an Omega yet." He mumbled. 

"Hi." Armin said with a smile, Levi gave him a nod. 

"What do you want to do?" Eren asked, eyes locked on Levi and a big smile on his face. 

"I-I don't know. We could play Donkey Kong again." Levi suggested shyly. 

"Yes! Let's play Donkey Kong 2! That's the best one!" Eren said dashing towards the living room to set it up. 

"There are two Donkey Kong games?" Levi asked as Armin hopped off the bed and the two followed Eren to the other room. 

"There are three actually." Armin laughed. "You'll have to get used to them if you want to be friends with Eren, he loves video games." He added. 

"I don’t mind." Levi said quietly; sitting down on the couch. Eren skipped over, passing a controller to Armin and the other to Levi before plopping down beside Levi and putting his arms around the older boys waist. Levi blushed and looked at him. 

"We played yesterday so Armin can be one player and we'll share the other." Eren said happily. Levi nodded slowly and turned toward the TV, trying to focus on the new game. 

 

 

Levi had to go to his new school the next day; His mother walked him there before she headed to her new job. Levi kissed her goodbye and wished her good luck. He was very happy about her new job; maybe she wouldn't have to work so late in the night anymore, or come home bruised, hurt, and smelling like aggressive Alphas. 

He sat silently in his classroom, just looking around before the teacher began; silently begging she didn't call on him. The other kids were loud; laughing and playing together, a lot like Eren. Except Levi didn't seem to mind when it was Eren. They were all bigger than him too. Eren was right, he was no bigger than a kindergartener. 

He managed minimal contact most of the day; following the rest of the class outside for the second half of lunch. He kept to himself; walking around the playground. There were far too many children for Levi to even try to get close to the playground equipment, even if he would have enjoyed a swing. 

"Levi!!" He heard a screech before he was tackled; arms wrapped around his neck in a tight embrace. 

"Eren?" Levi exclaimed in surprise 

"Eren Jaegar! Get back here now!" The small white haired teacher on duty yelled from the fenced area. Eren and Levi both looked over at the angry teacher. 

"I'm not supposed to be over here. The Kindergarten playground is over there." Eren said, then pulled Levi toward the fence. 

"Who's your friend Eren?" The teacher asked. 

"This is Levi Miss Rico. He's my mate!" Eren said proudly, making Levi blush again and Miss Rico laughed."Is he? Aren't you a bit young to be making decisions like that?" She asked. 

"I don’t care! Levi will be my Omega and I'm going to protect him!" Eren demanded. 

"Alright. The older children aren't supposed to play in here but if you promise to stay right here I'll let you two play together by the gate." Rico said. 

"Thanks Miss Rico!" Eren said, pulling Levi over to sit against the fence. 

"I didn’t know you were in my school!" Eren said smiling. 

"It’s my first day." Levi said. 

"Well now we can see each other more! And next year I'll be in the big playground with you!" Eren said excitedly. 

"That'll be nice." Levi said giving Eren a tiny smile. They spent the rest of the lunch hour together until the bell rang and they had to go to their separate classes. 

 

 

 

 

"Hey look, Levi's playing with the Kindergarteners again! What a loser!" A tall brown haired/freckled girl named Ymir from Levi's class laughed loudly. It had been a couple weeks since Levi started spending lunch times with Eren and his friends; his class had noticed and started teasing him. Calling him a baby or a loser for hanging out with the younger kids. He didn't care, they meant nothing to him, all that mattered was that he had Eren. 

Eren on the other hand became angry at the older kids words.  

 

"Don’t you talk about my Omega that way!" Eren yelled, standing up and trying to look intimidating. 

"Your Omega?" She scoffed, laughing in his face; Reiner laughing behind her. 

"Yes my Omega! I'm going to protect him from people like you!" Eren puffed up and stepped between them and Levi. Ymir and Reiner laughed, along with the other kids who gathered at the commotion. 

"Oh yeah? How?" Reiner smirked, towering over Eren, though Eren didn't falter. Reiner pushed him with a laugh; almost knocking Eren off his feet. Eren recovered quickly and lunged toward Reiner with a shout. Reiner blocked him and pushed Eren harder, knocking him down on the grass, still laughing. Eren scraped his elbow but looked angrier than ever, about to jump up and attack Reiner again. 

"Don't you touch him!" Levi growled before swinging hard and punching Reiner hard in the face, knocking the large boy down. Everyone who had gathered at the scuffle stared at Levi with wide eyes and open mouths before the teachers came and separated everyone, dragging them to the Principal's office. 

 

 

 

"Levi! What happened, are you okay?" Kuchel rushed into the office, kneeling in front of him and checking him out, he had no injuries other than some bruising on his knuckles. 

"I'm fine mom." Levi said quietly; Kuchel eyed Reiner and his bruised face, and Ymir who sat with her arms folded across her chest and a smirk on her face, beside Levi. 

"We’ll talk when I get out." She warned and went into the principal's office, where the teachers and other parents were waiting. 

 

 

"You know, you’re okay Levi." Ymir said when they were alone, Levi gave her an odd look in response. 

"You picked on me, I punched Reiner and got us sent to the principal, now  you think I'm okay?" He asked with a raised brow. 

"Hey, not many kids can take out Reiner, especially one as small as you." She grinned. 

"It’s true, that was a good punch." Reiner smirked from beside her. 

"Let's be friends." Ymir said. Levi stared at them in disbelief for a moment 

"You can’t pick on Eren." He said with a glare. 

"Promise." They both said with a smile.  

"You have to apologize to him." Levi added. 

"Fine." They agreed. 

"Alright. Let's be friends." Levi said and sat back in his chair, waiting for his mother. 

 

 

Kuchel was not happy when she came out of the office. The three had been sent home for the remainder of the day and Levi was banned from the Kindergarten area during lunch for the remainder of the year. Luckily the school year was nearly over; he and Eren would be able to spend the summer together and would be spending the next school year on the same playground during lunch.  

Levi followed his mother back to her work. 

"Are you mad?" Levi asked quietly as they walked in silence. He wasn't used to his mother being angry with him. 

"What possessed you to hit that kid? I thought you knew better than that!" Kuchel huffed angrily, causing her to cough harshly. 

"He pushed Eren." Levi said looking at his feet, hating when his mother coughed, even worse when he caused her to do it. 

"He what?! That kid is more than twice the size of you! And Eren!" Kuchel exclaimed, her eyes wide in disbelief 

"They were making fun of me for spending time with Eren during lunch because he's in Kindergarten. Eren got mad and tried to hit him, Reiner knocked him down so I punched him." Levi explained. 

"Was Eren okay? I didn’t see him or Carla." Kuchel asked. 

"I told the teacher Eren didn’t do anything." Levi said. Kuchel stopped walking and knelt down beside Levi. 

"That was very brave of you to look after Eren. While I don’t approve of violence I'm glad you didn’t let anything happen to him." Kuchel said giving him a hug. 

"I know he's all about protecting you but a good Omega takes care of their Alpha too." She said as she stood  up and continued their walk. 

"I want you to stay away from those kids." She said. 

"They want to be friends now." Levi said casually. Kuchel looked at him as though he were crazy. 

"They liked that I could knock Reiner down. I told them to stop picking on Eren." Levi said. Kuchel shook her head. 

"Kids are weird." She laughed. "If they are anything but friendly to you I want you to stay clear of them." She warned, Levi nodded. 

Kuchel went back to the flower shop while Levi made himself comfortable in the nearby break room; as he did every day after school to do his homework and stay out of trouble. Sometimes he would sit on the floor behind the flower shop counter but the clerical staff and few nurses that used this particular break room loved him and would often buy him a snack from the vending machine. 

 

"Levi? What are you doing here?" Grisha asked in surprise as he walked into the room. Levi looked up from his homework to look at the Doctor. 

"I got sent home early, Mom is still working." He said, still a little shy around Eren's dad. 

"You come here everyday after school?" Grisha asked, Levi nodded.  

"Well that answer's Eren's constant questions." The man chuckled and sat down beside Levi. 

"You and Eren are really good friends huh?" Grisha asked and Levi nodded again, a little intimidated by the older man.  

"That's good. Eren has lots of friends but he seems to find you extra special." Grisha explained. 

"I'm not." Levi whispered. 

"Says who? If Eren thinks your special isn’t that all you need to be special?" Grisha asked. Levi gave him a small smile and nodded. 

"Well it was nice seeing you Levi, I just came in to grab a coffee; I have to get back to work." Grisha said reaching into his pocket for money for the coffee machine and giving Levi the change with a smile. Levi thanked him, using the change to buy himself a herbal tea. 

 

 

Kuchel and Levi made their way home after her shift; it was later than usual since she made up the extra time it took to go to Levi's school.  Eren was waiting in the window, watching for them. As soon as they turned up the driveway Eren bolted out the door; his mother calling out behind him. Eren ran up to Levi, throwing his arms around the older boy; Carla rushing out behind him. 

"Eren, I don’t care who you see in the driveway, you do not run outside without telling me first!" She reprimanded. 

"I got you in trouble" Eren said to Levi, completely ignoring his mother. 

"He's been upset all afternoon, wouldn’t tell me what was wrong." Carla said to Kuchel. 

"I'm not in trouble. Are you alright?" Levi asked and Eren nodded, still holding him tightly. 

"Apparently there was a scuffle today at lunch. Levi got sent to the principal." Kuchel explained. 

"Kuchel, Levi, come in for dinner, it's late. We have left overs." Carla said leading Kuchel in, followed by the two boys; Eren holding Levi's hand tightly. 

 

 

"Okay Eren, say goodbye to Levi, it's time for bed." Carla said from the doorway of his bedroom.  

"Can Levi spend the night?" Eren whined sleepily; it was past his regular bedtime. 

Carla looked at Kuchel who smiled softly at Levi. 

"Do you want to sleep over? It is Friday, you don’t have school tomorrow." She asked. 

"Will you be okay by yourself?" Levi asked and Kuchel laughed lightly. 

"I'll be fine, and I'll be right downstairs if you need me." She assured. Levi glanced at Eren who was cuddling into him then nodded.  

The two got ready for bed; Levi borrowing pyjamas and a toothbrush, then their mothers tucked them into Eren's bed before making their way back into the living room to continue their earlier conversations.   

Eren fell asleep almost instantly; his arms around Levi protectively. Levi had a harder time falling asleep. He had never spent the night without his mother before; he didn’t even sleep in his own room every night yet. He didn't realize he had been whimpering until Eren woke beside him. Eren looked at him through sleepy eyes before he leaned forward and rubbed his neck against Levi's. 

"W-what?" Levi asked confused. 

"My dad rubs his neck on my mom's all the time. It makes her smell like him and she's not sad after he does it." Eren said, holding Levi close. 

Levi breathed in deeply, his nose buried in Eren's shoulder. Eren didn't smell like anything, they were too young, they hadn't developed the scents they would have as presented dynamics yet, but Eren's actions had made him feel a little better. Eren still fell back asleep before Levi did but feeling much more content he found himself drifting off not too long afterwards. 

 

 

 

"So Levi, you were talking to Eren's Dad yesterday at the hospital?" Carla asked as the boys sat down to the table for breakfast in their pajamas and bedheads. Levi nodded before thanking her for the cereal she placed before him. 

"Well I was just talking to your Mom last night and how would you like to come home with Eren every day after school and wait here until your mom comes home?" Carla asked. 

"Really?" Levi asked, glancing at Eren who was smiling excitedly, his mouth full of his own cereal. Carla nodded happily. 

"I would like that very much." Levi said with a smile before scooping up a spoonful of cereal. Eren squealing for joy beside him. 

 

Levi started going home from school with Eren that Monday. Every day at the end of classes he would make his way down to the Kindergarten hallway where Eren would greet him with a smile and lead him out to his mother's car by the hand. 

It took some getting used to; as boring and uncomfortable it was to spend the afternoon on the floor of the flower shop, he wasn't used to being away from his mother so often. Being with Eren did help to ease him into it; they would spend every afternoon together. Carla would give them an after school snack, Levi would help Eren with his homework while also doing his own, then they would play or watch tv until Kuchel came home. Sometimes they would eat with Carla, Grisha, and Eren; most of the time they'd go downstairs and Kuchel would prepare dinner for just the two of them. 

 

 

Life was better than it had ever been for Levi. His mother seemed happy with her job; they didn’t have a lot of money but they had more than before, enough for proper food and necessities. Kuchel seemed better rested and had even gained a bit of weight on her frail frame making her look much healthier than before. She still had a pretty harsh cough but at least it didn’t rattle her entire body anymore. 

Levi was glad that Kuchel and Carla had become such good friends as well, he had never seen his mother laugh and smile with another adult so much before. He really liked Carla as well; he felt almost as comfortable with her as he did with his own mother. Levi was getting close to a lot of people; something that he'd never thought he would do. He had become surprisingly close with Armin; the two soft spoken boys had much more in common with each other than either had with Eren; they enjoyed reading, learning new things, and just doing things quietly.  

Though nothing would change how Levi felt for Eren; the loud excitable boy had captured his heart and no amount of common interests with someone else would make Eren any less than his favorite person. Aside from his mother, there was no one he would rather spend time with than Eren, and the feeling seemed to be mutual. Levi had been sure that Eren would have gotten sick of him by now--- his mother had often told him he worried too much for an 8 year old--- but Eren was just as attached to him after months as he had been the first week. 

Eren had been pretty upset that Levi couldn't spend lunch time with him anymore and took it pretty hard, though having him every day after school seemed to make up for it a little and before long he was back to his happy, energetic self. Levi started spending lunchtime with Ymir, Reiner, and Reiner's cousin Annie who was in a different class but Levi got along with well; she was small with a stoic, intimidating face like him so they hit it off rather quickly. It got him through his school day at least; having friends was nice, not having to be the last one picked to do group work with, or spending recess sitting alone at his desk, now he actually had a good time during the school day.

Having friends was nice.