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dreamscape

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When Roman invites Virgil to his dreamscape, Virgil is unnerved. He’s cautious about entering the space, wondering if there’s some sort of trick in play. Why is Roman being so generous? Does he really want Virgil around? Is the dreamscape safe? How does it function? The thoughts circle around and around in his head, even as they enter the dreamscape in a cloudy haze. Thick snow layers the grass. Trees stretch towards the skies.

"Well, this is where I live!" Roman gestures grandly, snapping Virgil out of his thoughts. It’s a rich person house, castle-esque, with elegant towers and gaping windows and weatherworn brick. The tendrils of anxiety in Virgil’s gut refuse to release their hold on him, but quiet awe tugs at his chest. Crystalline snow crunches underfoot as they approach the house; Roman grins with pride, observing his widened eyes.

“This is a bit much,” Virgil breathes out as he enters. He tries to inject the words with disdain, but he fails miserably. His eyes glitter.

“I knew you’d like it!” Roman leaps into the air and fist-pumps. Virgil stifles a snort behind his sleeve.

“Guess I do, Princey,” he admits.

“It’s time for a tour, I think.” Roman outstretches a hand for Virgil to take. He may as well have a rose clutched tastefully between his teeth, what with the way he goes about it. Virgil shakes his head, sighing, but he complies. Roman beams. “Let’s go! The dining hall is set up beautifully, if you’re feeling up to eating. It might be a tad excessive, but there are flower vases.”

“Everything you do is a tad excessive,” Virgil points out, deadpan. Roman scowls playfully. They lapse into silence as Roman makes his way through the enormous house. Virgil trails behind Roman, watching how ecstatic he is. He’s borderline skipping as he moves through the halls.

Maybe Virgil was wrong to doubt the fanciful Side. Maybe Roman’s intentions were as pure as he claimed them to be. Maybe all Roman wanted was to share this special space with Virgil.

The anxiety he’s been experiencing this entire time recedes. He lets out a soft breath, an exhale passing through his lips. Roman turns to him with a gentler smile, peaceful. He’s no longer pulling Virgil along; they’re holding hands for the hell of it now.

“Calmed down, eh?” It sounds like it should be mocking, teasing, but it isn’t.

“Yeah,” Virgil confesses, flushing as he shrinks into his hoodie. It isn’t visible through his powdery white foundation, but he feels painfully exposed and all too vulnerable.

Suddenly, the ringing of a bell sounds from a room not far away.

“Oh! Dinner must be complete,” Roman exclaims. He squeezes Virgil’s hand once with vigor, then proceeds to pull him towards the sound.

Virgil blinks for a moment, then follows along with a surprised laugh.

The rest of the night goes smoothly.