The stars peeked at Havia from the lone window to their shared room, but the young master had no time to spare appreciating their beauty. He threw another wistful glance at Qwenthur, who was arranging his hair in that immaculate manner he insisted it be in before he went to bed. The fact that lights out had been ages ago was no deterrent to Qwenthur.
As for Havia, he really wished Qwenthur would just come to bed already. Their metal-frame bed, in this dead of winter, was abhorrent to sleep on alone. Of course, having bunk beds, they always faced the problem of there being too little space for two, but really, what was it compared to the chilling feel of awaking to frozen sheets! And besides, waking up next to Qwenthur was not unpleasant in the least.
"Okay, I'm done!"
Qwenthur's voice was music to Havia's (cold) ears. Not for the first time, the student was struck by Havia's doglike mannerisms - this was definitely a poofing of the ears moment.
"Finally!" Havia shuffled around to the edge of the bed. Qwenthur preferred sleeping with a wall on one side, for whatever reason. The student hoisted himself over the bundle that was Havia and drew the sheet over himself.
"I say this everyday, but I still can't believe how useful having a walking heat radiator is. Thank you, Havia,"
"You come into my bed, and disrespect me like this..." Havia muttered darkly.
Qwenthur giggled and snuggled into him, tucking his icicle toes safely away from Havia's proximity. For now, at least. He stared at the other's face, just like he had for almost every night since they'd begun this arrangement. Warm eyes returned his gaze, a contented grin on a familiar face. After the recent whirlwind of events, Qwenthur needed familiarity, and he reveled in it now.
He raised a hand, traced the outlines of Havia's face, tried to recall the name of each bone he felt. Havia giggled, and received a light smack on the head for it.
"Sentimental, I see," Havia commented, ignoring the fact that he himself had long before clasped Qwenthur's other hand in his own and had still not let it go and didn't appear to want to either.
"Havia." Qwenthur called, for no reason, eyes directed straight at him.
"Nothing," Qwenthur grinned. "I just wanted to say your name."
"I was just thinking, I really, really love you." Qwenthur beamed at him. "I mean... look how much you've changed. We've changed. It's..."
Havia hushed him with a finger to the lips.
"I know... where did little crybaby Havia go? Who is this macho man beside me? These thoughts are perfectly understandable, Qwenthur..."
Qwenthur muffled his laughter.
"Nobody said anything about crybabies..."
"So you admit you said something about macho men?"
"Idiot," Qwenthur fondly mumbled. "Really, though. I've never trusted anyone more than I trust you. With my life, my heart..."
Havia turned red, averting his eyes to avoid overheating.
"Me... me too. I know you're reckless and you don't care enough for your safety, so I always tag along, but! But know this! Together we can defeat Objects, we can do anything."
The student laughed at his companion's antics. As funny as Havia was, he had a point. Neither of them alone could have done half of what they had together. Mulling over the realization, they fell asleep.
"I love you, I love you, I love you so much-"
Qwenthur sobbed, his fingers gripping onto Havia's shoulders so hard he was sure the imprints would bruise, but he just didn't care.
Their faces were so close together, an eerie echo of the times that they had been this close in a different setting, a different mood. Tears dripped from the student's eyes, clearly shaken by his partner's lack of response, lack of concern, lack of… caring.
"I… I know, Qwenthur."
The blond swallowed hard before answering back. "So don't- don't leave!"
There was no reply this time, and Havia gently pried the student's hands from his body, and made no move to wipe the tears on his roommate's face.
"I'm sorry, Qwenthur…"
The loud thwack of a suitcase being closed up broke Qwenthur's train of thought, crashing it, derailing it, blasting it out of mind.
Havia was sitting on the floor, grinning from corner to corner, stuffing the last of his belongings in the tiny suitcase. True to his word, the noble-blood had arranged to return home as soon as things had calmed down, and while Frolaytia was sulking about the loss of manpower, no one could say he didn't deserve it. He was going to get what he had come for, a comfortable life and a hero's welcome.
That didn't do anything to lessen the directionless swirl of emotions within Qwenthur. He was greedy, selfish, ungrateful, for being unable to send his friend off with a smile or a calm heart. In his heart of hearts he'd hoped for Havia to change his mind, for some miracle where they didn't have to separate, where their relationship actually meant something. Outwardly he knew, knew that bluebloods had dalliances, had affairs, had trails of broken hearts trailing behind them, and yet he hoped.
Havia rose, having finished the final checks on his luggage. Qwenthur felt his heart sink deeper and deeper into some lava-filled swamp, while outwardly he pasted a smile on his face.
Havia didn't move to go to the door, which caused his companion a brief moment of confusion. The radar analyst stared at Qwenthur with an intensity that made him feel exponentially more disgusting with each passing second.
"Qwenthur," Havia grinned, "Come visit me when you finish being a student."
Qwenthur quashed the momentary bud of hope that threatened to bloom in his chest, nipped it right at the roots, held it between his hands as the life drained away from it.
"I will," he promised.
Havia walked towards him, and Qwenthur would have turned to open the door, only Havia hadn't made any move to bring his meagre luggage anywhere. So Qwenthur stayed frozen in place as Havia edged closer and closer, finally close enough to place his hand on Qwenthur's mop of hair and ruffle the knots into it.
Havia muffled his laughter. He moved his hand to slide down the side of Qwenthur's neck and rest on his shoulder, where he could pull his dearest friend into an embrace.
Qwenthur still stayed still, unmoving, biting his lip and squinting at the material of Havia's clothes. It looked blurry.
"Goodbye, Qwenthur. I'm sorry."
"Is Qwenthur not coming to see you off…?" Milinda asked, tilting her head to the side. Havia resisted the urge to physically correct the position.
Instead, he shook his head.
"We said our goodbyes already. It's fine."
"Havia, I hope you'll enjoy the fruits of your labour. And consider coming back to volunteer, if you ever find yourself missing the military life."
Their commander, Frolaytia had a firm grip on his shoulder, and squeezed it a little more violently than could perhaps be passed off for a farewell.
Havia didn't know how much she knew about Qwenthur and his relationship, but he did know she thought of both of them as something like her younger brothers. It wasn't really surprising for her to be so protective over him. Something bitter inside Havia felt glad, relieved that at least someone would be there to help Qwenthur recover from what he was doing.
It was only a question of sooner or later. This was… inevitable. He would have to marry his fiancée and settle down now, as the icing on the cake. His father would never hear of him taking a man seriously. It couldn't be helped…
He got into the little, ugly helicopter that would take him to the mainland. There were quite a lot of people here to see him off. So many people, a few he barely even knew the names of. Well, he guessed fame had its perks.
But there was one… a blue hood that raced through the crowd. Who-?
Qwenthur emerged from the sea of heads and faces, an angry expression on his face, eyes looking straight at him. Suddenly Havia felt as if maybe, maybe Qwenthur had gotten over it already.
The helicopter began its startup sequence, blades beginning to whir. He wouldn't be able to hear anything, even if Qwenthur shouted at the top of his voice.
He could still see, however. Qwenthur's eyes were still red-rimmed, and he signed to Havia.
Havia grinned the widest grin ever. He waved back as the helicopter finally lifted off, leaving Qwenthur's tearful declaration and their relationship behind.
Chilly winds blew, sending snow flying through the otherwise pure air. Milinda left dainty imprints as she walked on this unstable terrain, looking for familiar blond hair on a blue uniform---
The foreign student was sitting in front of her Object, using the walkway for transporting materials as a seat. The sounds of materials being welded and pipes clanging against each other should have been home to him, but he sat staring at the snowy landscape with eyes that didn't see anything else.
Even she felt uncertain, unsure whether to approach or not. She couldn't keep avoiding him forever, she reasoned. Already she had been under this dilemma for three days since Havia had left. Might as well face it.
He turned his head to face her, some food stuck on his chin.
"Princess." he greeted.
All her resolve left her the moment she saw his eyes.