Pidge and Hunk had been waiting weeks to make their grand announcement to the team, and from Lance’s reaction, it had clearly been worth it.
“ARE YOU SERIOUS?!” he shouted, jumping out of his seat and sending a bowl of green goo flying to the ground.
Pidge smirked and nodded. They held out a small black device, this one completely black except for blue edges. “It took a lot of work,” they explained, “but it works similar to texting. You type a phone number and then write a message and it should go straight to that number.” They paused for a second before adding, “at least, it usually does.”
“It does take a long time to send,” Hunk said, apologetically, “like about a day to actually send and then over a week before the message reaches earth.”
“That’s incredible,” Shiro said, staring in awe at the small device Pidge handed him, this one edged with purple. “I can’t believe you two did this. I-I don’t even know what to say.”
Hunk shrugged while trying to hide his smile, while Pidge smirked.
“It wasn’t easy,” Pidge said, “it doesn’t use a network to send messages, but it uses a different form of energy so it can travel wherever. Coran said this sort of tech was pretty common back when he was on Altea. You can easily message someone else who has another one of these devices, but it’s harder when the person you are trying to contact only has a cell phone. The hard part was making them compatible.”
Finally, Lance couldn’t contain himself. “Well, give me one would you?” he exclaimed, reaching across the dining room table. Hunk tried to hide his amusement while handing Lance a device. Lance instantly turned it on, and started typing in all the numbers he could remember, while simultaneously beginning to walk back to his room. He only stopped to give both Pidge and Hunk a quick but tight hug, which Hunk returned happily while Pidge rolled their eyes but accepted.
Shiro left too, after thanking Pidge and Hunk about a thousand times. He seemed to have the same idea as Lance, which was to find a little privacy and start writing letters as soon as possible.
Keith shifted uncomfortably in his seat while staring at his unfinished bowl of green goo, trying desperately not to look at the device that had been placed next to him.
“We should probably go,” Pidge said, tugging on Hunk’s shirt. “We should work on those modifications for the castle’s defense system I told you about, I swear I can figure out a way to make-“
“Wait!” Keith said, a little louder than he had meant to. He finally looked down at his messaging device, and he picked it up carefully and held it out.
“This probably took a lot of work, and um, I don’t want to waste it, so, I, uh, think maybe you should take this one. That way you don’t have to make any more if you need another one.”
“Uh, you don’t want one?” Hunk asked, slightly hurt.
Keith’s cheeks flushed red. “I…do, it’s just, I don’t think, I mean I can’t use it.” He looked down in embarrassment. “I have no one on earth to message. I’m sorry.”
“It’s fine,” Pidge said quickly, “its not a big deal. But I think you should keep it. Just in case.”
Hunk nodded. “Yeah, no worries dude.” He smiled reassuringly.
“Um, thanks.” Keith said, slowly pocketing the device.
Pidge had gotten impatient, was now pulling Hunk toward to door, with a surprising amount of strength. “See you later, Keith!” They said brightly, exiting the room, pulling Hunk behind them.
“Yeah, see you.” Keith said to an empty room.
Lance was having a hard time remembering all the numbers he wanted to. He had almost everyone’s from his family memorized, but there was about a billion other people he wanted to brag about his space adventure to. Finally, he stopped trying to think, and simply typed in his mother’s number.
It was over an hour later that Lance finally emerged from his room. His message was now being sent, and he was glad neither Hunk or Pidge hadn’t mentioned a length limit. It had taken him a while to figure out how he should explain what had happened and apologize (even though it wasn’t really his fault, he still felt bad) that he hadn’t been in touch for so long. God, she must be so worried about me Lance had thought. Or maybe just sad. Everyone probably thinks I’m dead. That was a depressing thought, so Lance pushed it out of his mind. After that he tried to explain the whole Zarkon situation, but that was difficult too. He didn’t want his letter to fall into the depressing category, so he had quickly moved on. He figured before jumping into all his stories - which he definitely planned to do - he should introduce all of his team mates. Of course, his mom knew Hunk and he had mentioned Pidge in a letter he had sent while still at the Garrison. He rambled about Shiro for a bit (his mom already knew who he was since he had been Lance’s hero since before the Kerberos mission, but while he had been cool then, Lance felt he had become substantially more cool. Maybe it was the robotic arm or the streak of white hair, or maybe the fact that he was now the leader of a giant robot make up of lions that intended to save the universe, but whatever it was Lance figured his mom should hear about it). Explaining Allura and how she was a pretty pointed eared ailen who was technically 10,000 years old made Lance feel a little like he was writing a sci-fi, but he figured it didn’t matter because his life was now basically a sci-fi. Next was Keith.
Ah, how to describe Keith, his ultimate rival? Badass was the first thing that had popped into his head. Sarcastic, but with a smile that lit up the entire castle. Overprotective of his teammates, especially Shiro despite the fact that Shiro was several inches taller and weighed almost twice as much in pure muscle. Lance had to stop for a minute to think. What else about that odd mullet man? Keith was the only one who rivaled Pidge in saltiness, and that was an impressive feat. He went a bit crazy with the whole training thing, going longer and harder than anyone else. He also had really cool eyes, pretty eyes, Lance thought. Whoa nope, that sounds weird. Just cool. Mentioning his mullet seemed important as well, so Lance had jotted that down.
Picturing Keith’s mullet had led Lance to thinking about the way his raven locks brushed against his pale skin. The contrast was striking. Not as striking as that dude’s cheekbones, Lance thought, kid could probably cut metal with those things. Oh, and his lips- Lance stopped himself. He felt weird thinking about Keith like that. He wouldn’t ever admit to himself how often he found himself looking at Keith, because that would be weird. Nope, none of that.
Lance had ended up only mentioning Keith as briefly as he could, making sure to include his mullet and how stupid it was.
Now that his first message was being sent, Lance figured it was as good a time as in to get some training in. He strode casually to the training deck, coming to a halt when he saw Keith already inside.
The red paladin was vigorously defeating a training bot with a little more force than Lance thought necessary. Keith looked…pissed? No, that wasn’t the right word. Keith was always pissed at something. He looked more frustrated, bordering on upset.
Once the training bot collapsed Keith rolled his shoulders back in an attempt to relieve some tension.
“Nice,” Lance spoke suddenly, causing Keith to jump slightly, “but there are probably more humane ways to take out a bot.”
Keith swung around to glare at Lance. “So now you’re into criticizing my fighting style? Is there anything in this entire galaxy you don’t think you know more about?” He asked sharply.
Lance took a step back in surprise. Keith didn’t have his usual slight smirk or his grumpy-but-secretly-amused pout, instead his retort had been stern, almost mean. Lance recovered quickly, trying not to let the sting of Keith’s words show. “First of all, I don’t think I know more than you. I do. Big difference there buddy. And I wasn’t criticizing; I was commenting.”
Keith rolled his eyes and shoved past Lance, making his way into the hallway. Lance watched him storm away, almost feeling bad. But then he remembered it was Keith’s moodiness that made things difficult in the first place, so he stopped thinking about him all together and instead started a new training session, determined to take out the bot faster than Keith had. It was harder than usual for him to focus, and eventually he shut down the training session prematurely, too preoccupied with thoughts of his family.