Harry still hallucinates butterflies from time to time and gets horrible migraines if he doesn’t rest enough.
Merlin’s legs itches annoyingly even though there’s nothing for him to scratch anymore and consequently, he loses his patience over small matters much more quickly.
Eggsy wakes up so often in the middle of the night, the sound of a gunshot or an explosion ringing in his ears, that sometimes, he’d rather have insomnia than relive all the painful memories.
It’s hard dealing with all of this, especially on their own, but none of them are used to ask for help.
Luckily, there is no better way for them to forget their own struggles than to help those they hold dear.
It wouldn’t be healthy, ignoring their own needs in favor others’, but the thing is, now they each got two people watching for their well-being in the little triad they’ve formed without wanting to.
Because somehow, staying over at Merlin’s until Harry and Eggsy can find a new house, became sharing his bed. It was unexpected, but even with all the issues they’re dealing with, they cannot remember a time they’ve been more happy.
And slowly, together, they find ways to cope.
The butterflies won’t ever completely disappear, but when Harry has one of his episode now, instead of shamefully hiding himself somewhere, he goes to Eggsy. He doesn’t remember when it started, but describing the hallucinations to him helps him keep his grip on reality. He worried at first that Eggsy would tire of it, but he never does. If anything, he never seems to get enough of Harry talking of his first passion and sometimes, when there’s nothing more urgent they need to be doing, he’ll keep going for hours, even when colorful wings have stopped fluttering in his vision.
When he’s plagued with a migraine, it’s Merlin that finds him and forces him to lie down on the first comfortable surface. If it’s not a bed, he’ll remove his cardigan and cover him with it instead of the blankets, before leaving to get a glass of water so that Harry doesn’t have to dry swallow his medication. And then, because most of his work can be done from anywhere as long as he’s got wifi, he’ll stay close to Harry, gently playing in his hair to distract him from the pain.
No matter the work he and Ginger do on his prosthetic legs, scratching at plastic won’t ever be satisfying. He knows he shouldn’t complain, that he could be dealing with phantom pain instead, but the feeling is no less annoying. It’s Harry who finally found a solution to his problem. It’s silly and Merlin still doesn’t understand why it works, but as long as it brings him relief, he’s willing to just roll with it.
So whenever he feels like scratching himself to the bones he no longer has, he goes to find either Harry or Eggsy and starts scratching at their back, often turning it into a massage. Of course, he cannot feel what they feel, but moving his fingers against their skin instead and hearing their little sounds of contentment helps him relax and forget the frustration that has been building inside of him.
There’s nothing that can prevent Eggsy from getting his nightmares nearly every night, but at least now, when he wakes up in a cold sweat and tears in his eyes, he needs only to turn on his side to be reminded that both Harry and Merlin are alive and safe, that he only needs to extend an arm to reach them.
And when that isn’t enough to calm himself, when he needs to leave the bed to go make himself a cup of tea and curl into the couch downstairs, inevitably, no matter how careful he is not to wake them, they’ll come join him. They don’t say anything, just press against him until they fall asleep. It’s not comfortable, and they always wake up sore and with a crick in their neck, but they’ve never once complained.
It’s not perfect and won’t ever be.
But for them, it’s just enough.