Virgil felt terrible for how he spoke to Thomas, but he had to get his point across quickly and beg Thomas to never let that happen again. He also didn’t want his Host to see him have a panic attack, or worse, get affected by one. Being in his room made it easier to manage the amount of anxiety that made it to his Host.
He stumbled down the hallway, uncharacteristically clumsy, as he tried to make it to his room. He knew that his time being questioned by Deceit on the stand had piqued the Light Sides’ curiosity, and he wasn’t ready to answer the questions they had. He couldn’t lie and summon the snake, but he couldn’t very well tell the truth, either. Virgil felt his blood pressure rising, felt his muscles tensing and relaxing with a confusing mix of flight! run! flee! run! and freeze! stop! relax! blink out!. Black spots were forming in his vision. He needed to focus on his breathing, but he couldn’t while he was trying to get to his room. Doing anything was difficult when every muscle felt like it was made of lead, but he could make it. It was only 20 feet away. He had to hide from the others, had to block his anxiety from Thomas, had to avoid the questions he saw swirling in their eyes...
Virgil decided to pretend not to hear Roman as he kept moving towards his room.
Virgil stopped walking (limping? running?) and let out a deep sigh as he realized that Roman was too close behind him to make it to his room on time. He attempted to take a deep breath in through his nose to try to gather enough strength to speak with Roman and then get back to his room. Roman came to a stop behind Virgil and decided to take his hand and twirl him around like a salsa partner so they were facing each other. Normally Virgil wouldn’t mind contact from one of the light sides, hell, he usually cherished every accidental touch he got, after he gathered himself in the mornings of course. But after dealing with Deceit in the courtroom today, Deceit in control (like always, he’s always been in control), Roman’s hand felt like a brand that made his skin crawl. Virgil roughly yanked his hand away and skillfully moved his head so his bangs and hood mostly covered his eyes.
“Jesus Roman! You can’t just grab people like that!”
Roman rolled his eyes, but looked slightly apologetic.
“Sorry Mr. Fight or Flight! But I had something to ask you and I think I have a good idea for the next video!”
Roman was bouncing on the balls of his heels by this point with hope and excitement shimmering in his cognac eyes. As much as Virgil hated the thought of peopling and just wanted to decompress (panic cry scream cry) in his room, he hated the thought of causing the royal’s light to dim (again, like he always does). His anxiety was starting to spike even more at the thought of the question Roman had, but he held it down as best he could.
Trying to seem as normal as possible (can’t let him know can’t let him know what’s his question oh god does he know does he know he’s gonna hate me he’s gonna hate me he hates me), he sighed and asked, “Okay, what’s your idea?” (There, get him talking about his idea, he might even forget he had a question)
Roman grinned even wider. “Oh I think the Fanders will absolutely love it! You know how much they love Deceit and have been asking for more information on the Dark Sides?”
Virgil’s blood turned to ice, but he expertly kept his features schooled in a cool indifference behind the shadow of his bangs and hood.
“Well I’ve been reading the comments section of the videos, of course, and I noticed that there’s a theory that they have that you used to be active partners with Deceit and the other Dark Sides! We could play into that and talk about lying to yourself and what being a villain means and how people grow and you could work with the other Dark Sides and…”
Virgil’s anxiety was increasing with each word Roman shouted. Roman seemed to notice that something was off with Virgil and paused in his speech, most of which Virgil had missed.
“Virge? Is something wrong? Do you not like my idea?”
Virgil looked up to meet Roman’s eyes (when had he looked down?) and saw concern and sadness there. Dammit, Virgil thought, I can’t bring him down again. Virgil took in a shuddering breath and said, “Sorry Princey. I’m just tired from filming today. Your idea’s fine.” No! Dammit no! He can’t! I can’t! “I’ll catch up with you later, ‘kay?”
Roman frowned, but nodded. “Alright Virge. I’ll chat with you later. Family dinner?”
Patton had instituted a mandatory family dinner every night long before Virgil had been accepted into the famILY. Despite his panic attack that was barely being held at bay, he managed a small smile at the memory of his first mandatory family dinner. (“Now young man, none of that! You’re coming to our family dinner because you’re famILY!” Patton gently grabbed Virgil’s forearm and started pulling him towards the stairs. “Wh-whatever”. He allowed himself to grin until he got downstairs where the other sides were. He had a reputation to keep up dammit.). With Virgil’s erratic sleep patterns, though, he sometimes ended up sleeping through family dinner.
“Y-yeah, I’ll see you there.”
Roman smiled tightly, bowed, and flourished, “Very well, my Dark and Stormy Knight! Until we meet again!” Roman turned to go downstairs, no doubt to express his post-video creative spike to someone who could listen, and Virgil was finally allowed to get to his room. As soon as Roman had turned, Virgil moved the opposite way and let his breathing become more erratic. He began shaking all over, largely as a result of his anxiety and partially as a result of trying to keep his panic under control while speaking with Roman. He felt like fear and panic were clawing and ripping at his brain. When he finally made it to his room, he barely managed to close the door and snap it soundproof before he collapsed into a shaking, wheezing pile on the floor. His vision was definitely tunneling at this point. Virgil was laying on his side, and he could already feel his arm starting to fall asleep. He felt like he wanted to rip off his skin, no, his flesh from his bones. It was itchy and crawling and horrible and uncomfortable. Virgil knew he couldn’t do that, but oh, how he wanted.
Why was Deceit showing up during the day? Why was he there? Why were the other sides and Thomas even giving him room to speak? Why did they ignore Virgil’s obvious discomfort around the other Side? It’s not like he could say much...
Virgil finally let himself go after holding back. He sobbed and cried. He let out his frustration and fear in near wails. Virgil knew he was going to pass out soon if he didn’t get his breathing under control, but he also couldn’t stop sobbing. He gasped in pitiful, tiny breaths when he could, but it felt like his diaphragm was moving of its own accord, forcibly pressing sobs out. He accepted that he was going to pass out and sent a silent apology to Patton and Roman.