When they part, colours burst across the sky in his eyes.
He starts, his audacity fleeing like rabbits scattered by the boom of fireworks, and yet his hand does not relinquish her cheek. Lightning feels his warmth through the black leather gloves, and remembers a time, not too long ago, when his fingers were still too small, rigid and helpless in the cradle of her own hand.
“You called me ‘mother’ once,” she tells him, perhaps out of simple curiosity, perhaps out of desire to run away. “When you were asleep. Back then during our journey.”
He withdraws then, hand falling back to his side as if in defeat—except it isn’t, not if she still knows him at all. “And it still bothers you even now,” he concludes slowly, raising an eyebrow.
She allows a smirk in return. “I was young back then. I had all the vanities of a young woman.”
“You are not old now.”
“Yes.” His voice is quiet, intense—the voice of a man who knows what he wants. His clear eyes search deep into hers, and Lightning is caught. “Just older.”
This time, it is her who leans in to kiss him.