Of all the things Remy thought they would end up as they'd never considered becoming a single parent at 18.
Their parents had not been happy about it, obviously -when had they ever been when it came to them? They had been furious , shouting and screaming as they’d never done before.
"How could you ever do this to us?" their father had roared, "we already put up with all that genderqueer crap of yours, even when heavens only knows we didn't need to do that. But this? This is outrageous!"
"Get out," had seethed their mother, "no daughter of mine will be such a disappointment -so get out of my sight, and don't you dare come back."
Remy had simply gotten up, biting the inside of their cheek until the taste of iron filled their mouth.
"I was never your daughter," they had said as they threw the door open.
"Glad we agree on something, then," their mother had answered before shutting the door behind them.
After that, with their parents and the kid's father out of the equation, Remy had had quite a hard time figuring out what to do.
Thankfully, they were not as alone as they had previously thought. As soon as Virgil heard of what had gone down, he and his mothers basically adopted them on the spot, giving them a home and all the support they had needed.
Fast forward eight and a half months later, they found themselves hunched on a hospital bed, screaming profanities at the top of their lungs as they pushed and pushed and pushed and tried with all of themselves to not punch the nurse if she said "breathe, you're almost there!" one more goddamn time-
Remy doesn’t remember much of the actual labor, aside from the pain of the contractions and the doctor and nurses telling them what to do. They remember the cry of a child suddenly filling the air, piercing and full of life as they slumped tiredly on the bed, exhaustion hitting them full force.
They remember a solid, warm weight being gently laid in their arms, the doctor's voice barely making its way through the metaphorical cotton that seemed to have filled their ears as they looked at the little human squirming in their arms -their child, the distantly thought, something warm and fuzzy taking residence in their heart.
"Congratulations," the doctor was saying, Remy's brain barely registering his words, "he's a very healthy boy."
Now, normally it would have been pretty clear the doctor was talking about the baby and not the parent. However, Remy was exhausted, 10 hours of labor weighing on their shoulders as they fought valiantly to keep their eyes open just a little bit longer.
So yeah, sue them if they slightly misinterpreted the doctor's words.
“Actually-” they slurred, attracting on themselves the gazes of everyone present as they pointed and accusing finger towards said doctor- “actually doc, you could not be more wrong. Because you see, I may be very healthy but I’m sure as hell not a boy, and if you call me one one more time I will take that folder in your arms and slap you with it. We clear?”
Remy nodded to themselves and closed their eyes, cuddling their child close to their chest with a contented sigh.
“Well, that’s very nice to know,” the doctor said after a moment of silence, making Remy open their eyes once again to glare -why was he smiling like that? And why was Virgil laughing his ass off on the chair?
“However, I’m afraid there has been a misunderstanding,” the doctor continued, barely containing a chuckle himself as he watched Remy’s expression become more confused by the second, “because, you see, with that statement I was, in fact, referring to your son.”
Remy blinked, the gears turning sluggishly in his head as the last minute or so replayed in their head. “Oh.”
Virgil -who until that moment had more or less managed to get his laughter under control- broke down again, falling from his chair as he merrily cackled his lungs out on the hospital room’s floor.
“Oh, heck off,” Remy grumbled.
“I’m sor- I’m sorry-” Virgil wheezed between fits of laughter, not looking apologetic at all- “oh my god Rems I’m never letting you live this down-”
Remy rolled their eyes, opting to ignore their best friend as their gaze moved on their son's little face. Bright blue eyes stared back at them, wide and curious, and Remy felt the warmth in their heart grow and grow until they felt like there wasn’t a place for anything else.
“So… he’s okay? No complications?” they asked, unable to tear their gaze away from the little bundle in their arms.
“Everything went as smoothly as it could’ve,” the doctor assured them, “your child is the epitome of healthy and I’m sure you’ll be able to-”
“Patton,” Remy piped up, wiggling his finger in front of his son’s face and smiling as he let out a happy gurgle, “his name is Patton.”
The doctor hummed, nodding. “Very well,” he said with a smile of his own, “as I was saying, I’m sure you’ll be cleared to bring Patton home very soon.”
“Mhm, sounds perfect,” Remy answered, clearly distracted.
The doctor chuckled, scribbling something in the folder in his arms before turning towards the door. “I’ll leave you two to get to know each other,” he said before heading out, “congratulations on the successful birth, Mx. Astoreth. Now get some rest -you both deserve it.”
A comfortable silence fell into the room, broken only by Virgil’s wheezing breath and Patton’s occasional happy gurgle.
“So-” Virgil said when he’d finally managed to calm down enough to formulate a coherent sentence- “Patton, uh?”
“I think it fits him, don’t you agree?” Remy hums, a tired grin stretching on their face as Patton let out a particularly loud squeal.
“Hello, Patton,” they said, kissing their son’s head, “welcome to the world.”
Remy yawned, sliding the last batch of freshly-baked pancakes on a plate as they idly hummed along with whatever song was now playing on the radio. They padded out of the kitchen and finished setting the table, before moving towards the stairs and cupping their hands around their mouth.
“Patton!” They called out, hoping their son hadn’t fallen asleep while washing his face again , “breakfast is ready!”
Almost immediately they heard a muffled thump coming from the upstairs bathroom, followed by all-too-familiar quick steps sprinting down the corridor.
“Breakfast!!” Patton cried happily as soon as he reached the top of the stairs, throwing himself down into his ren’s arms.
Remy -who had since gotten used to their son’s antics- simply smiled and easily caught the little boy, swinging him around a little as Patton giggled his little heart out.
“Here is my little Pattycake!” they exclaimed, giving him a big kiss on his cheek, “what incredible adventures did my favorite son in the world have tonight?”
“Ren!” Patton squealed, barely keeping his giggles at bay, “I’m your only son!”
“More of a reason to love you!” Remy grinned, relishing in their son’s delighted laugh as they set him down at the kitchen table “now sit down and eat your pancakes, you don’t wanna be late for school.”
“Can uncle Virgil come to pick me up today?” Patton said between mouthfuls of pancakes.
“Wow, you choose him over your own parent?” Remy asked, putting a hand on their chest in mock-offense, “I’m hurt, Pattycake, really.”
“He promised me ice cream!”
“Oh okay then,” Remy snickered in their coffee, “nothing can beat ice cream.”
“Exactly!” Patton agreed, dutifully nodding with his mouth full of food. He almost looked like a hamster, Remy mused while trying with all of their might to not squeal out loud and reach for their phone to take a photo.
“Well, sorry to disappoint-” they finally said, grabbing the dirty dishes from the table and putting them in the sink for later- “but today you’ll have to make do with little old me.”
“Aww, but I wanted ice cream,” Patton pouted, crossing his arms as he glared at the floor.
“I know, honey,” Remy said, carding their hand between Patton’s wild curls and crouching down in front of him, “but there’s a parent-teacher conference today, and I’ve gotta be there for that."
Patton still didn't look up, gaze stubbornly fixed downward. Remy sighed, tapping their chin in thought.
"How about this?" They finally said, nodding to themselves, "I come to pick you up, and after I've talked with your teacher we call uncle Virgil and we all go to that ice cream parlor you like so much."
Patton gave them a furtive glance, and Remy could see their son's pout already start to melt away.
"The one near the dog park?" Patton asked tentatively.
"The one and only," Remy nodded, grinning.
"Can I go play with some puppies too?"
"After you've eaten your ice cream, and if it's not too late, then I don't see why not."
"Yes!!" Patton exclaimed, his previous pouting session completely forgotten as he happily jumped into his ren's arms, "I love puppies!!"
"I know you do, bud," Remy laughed, spinning their son around for a few seconds before gently putting him down, "now go get ready, you don't wanna be late for school!"
"Okay!" Patton said with a big smile, before sprinting up the stairs towards his room.
Remy sighed, shaking their head with an amused smile on their face.
Patton sure was a handful, but god if they didn't love that little ball of sunshine.
After dropping Patton off, Remy got back home and officially started their own day.
They turned on the speakers and connected their phone, their favorite playlist immediately filling the house. Whistling happily along with the music, Remy set to cleaning around a little, washing the dishes and collecting some clutter from the floor with a pep in their step -they may not have been that much of a morning person and have the habit to curse their alarm to hell and back almost every single morning, but there was something calming in their routine that they wouldn’t trade for anything else in the whole world.
After their little spring cleaning was done, they grabbed their sketchpad, laptop, and tablet and half-sprawled themselves on the couch, letting the music wash over them as they set to work on their most recent commission.
When they got up again, it was way past noon and their stomach was very much protesting the lack of lunch. Groaning, Remy put aside their work and stood up, stretching their arms into the air and sighing when some very satisfying popping sounds came from their back. Humming, they moved to the kitchen, enjoying a quick lunch as they idly scrolled down their phone -and sent a quick message to Virgil, telling him to keep his afternoon free for an ice cream trip.
Panic!AtTheEmo: will do, can’t wait to see my favorite person in the whole world
Panic!AtTheEmo: oh and you too ig
Remy let out a snort, typing out a response as they moved to fill their third cup of coffee for the day -they were trying to cut their caffeine intake, but it was a work in progress.
SassyBitch: how very much dare you
Then, they put down their phone and got back to work, setting an alarm to alert them after another two hours -it would do no good to have promised their son ice cream only to completely miss the parent-teacher conference, after all.
Emile sighed, slouching back on his chair as another mother filed out of the classroom with her child in tow. He loved his job, he really did -interacting with the children, even the rowdiest ones, almost always brought a smile to his face and fondness in his eyes- but dealing with the parents was always more tiring that he would like it to be.
Set on enjoying the few minutes of peace before the next parent came in, Emile stood up and stretched his arms upwards, letting out a satisfied hum when some popping sounds reached his ears.
Then, he heard the door open again.
“Mr. Picani!” someone squealed, Patton’s very familiar voice his only warning before a blue blur tackled his leg with an excited squeal.
“Patton!” Emile laughed, before registering someone else’s calling the kid’s name at the same time -one of Patton’s parents, he presumed.
“Patton, you can’t tackle people like that, we’ve talked about this!”
“Oh, it’s okay,” Emile said, kneeling down to give Patton’s nose a little boop - he couldn’t help the smile that spread across his face when Patton let out a delighted giggle. The kid was just too adorable not to. “I could never refuse one of Patton’s patton ed hugs.”
“Fair enough,” came a chuckle from over them, making Emile finally look up to greet the newcomer -only to feel himself freeze on the spot, eyes widening slightly as he felt his heart make a little jump in his chest.
“Oh fuck they’re hot,” was the only coherent thought inside Emile’s head as he took in the black leather jacket, black hair framing a very, very handsome face and a pair of gorgeous, deep brown eyes staring back at him from behind a pair of sunglasses.
Yes. Sunglasses. Inside. Emile was too busy having a mini gay crisis to care too much right now.
“Uh-” he said, very eloquently, before scrambling to stand and try to get back some of his composure as he worked very hard on fighting down the blush currently threatening to take over his face -if because of embarrassment or a gayness overload, he was still too busy panicking to figure it out.
“Hello!” Emile said, voice jumping an octave higher as he threw a hand forward to shake, “I’m Emile Picani, Patton’s teacher -How do you do?”
“Nice to meet you,” the other grinned, “Remy Astoreth, I’m-”
“They’re my ren!!” Patton interjected, eyes sparkling as his grin seemed to widen even more.
“That I am,” his ren -Remy- chuckled, briefly kneeling down to scoop Patton in their arms, “so, I hope Patton has been behaving in class?”
“Oh, he’s a literal angel,” Emile sighs, a smile stretching automatically on his face, “he’s always so kind and sweet, I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve seen him helping his classmates. Your son is a joy to work with, Mx. Astoreth, there’s nothing bad I could say about him if I tried.”
“That’s very good to hear,” Remy said, grinning as their son giggled at the praise, “and please, none of that ‘Mx. Astoreth’ thing -it makes me feel old. A cutie like you can absolutely call me Remy.”
Emile squeaked, cheeks burning as he froze like a deer caught in the headlights -not that Remy was much better, the confident expression they had been wearing until that moment melting away in barely-concealed panic as what had just come out of their mouth started to set in.
“Shoot, sorry!” they exclaimed, trying not to jolt the kid in their arms too much in their panic, “I’m so sorry if I made you uncomfortable, oh my gosh, that was totally uncalled for, I usually have a much better filter-”
“No, no!” Emile interrupted their rant, clearing his throat as he gave the other a tentative smile, “it’s okay, really. I, um, didn’t mind, Mx. Ast- Remy.”
“oh- oh!” Remy grinned, before looking away, cheeks aflame, “great, that’s, uh, great.”
Too caught up in their own embarrassment, none of them noticed the little stars quite literally dancing in Patton’s eyes, hands pressed on his mouth to stop a squeal from coming out.
Remy managed to keep their composure up until their scheduled meet-up with Virgil. They managed to keep themselves together -even if only barely, if Virgil concerned glances were anything to go by - all throughout their usual greetings, the quick ice-cream trip and letting Patton roam around to pet dogs, with the promise to not stray too far off.
Then -when their son was finally out of earshot- they finally lost it.
“Holy shit I’m so fucking gay-” they shouted-whispered as they hid their reddening face in their hands. Beside them, Virgil startled, sending his ice cream flying and splattering on the ground.
“A warning next time would be nice, thanks,” he grumbled, throwing a mourning look to his now inedible ice cream.
“Sorry,” Remy said, not looking very apologetic as they peeked at him from between their fingers, “I’ll buy you another one when I’m done having a crisis.”
“You’re an absolute disaster of a person,” Virgil sighed, slouching back on the bench they were sitting on as he ignored the withering glare Remy sent his way, “anyway, care to elaborate? All I know is that you got out of that parent-teacher thing looking like you had just seen a fucking ghost or something.”
“Seen an angel, more like,” Remy muttered.
“... Remy, did you get the hots for your son’s teacher?” Virgil asked in disbelief, barely fighting down a snicker as Remy whipped their head out of their hands to glare at him full force -which would have maybe been intimidating, had it not been for the raging blush covering their cheeks and ears.
“Oh my god, you do!” Virgil grinned, obviously delighted by the sudden turn of events. “Spill. Now.”
“V, I don’t even know where to fucking start,” Remy said “he was just so sweet and polite -Patton introduced me as his ren and he didn’t even blink? Like, immediately used the right pronouns, nothing of that misgendering bullshit.”
“I already like him.”
“I know, right?!” Remy grinned, pushing on with their story -they were not gushing, no ma’am, Remy Asthoreth does not gush , what are you on about. “And he’s so cute?? Like, pastel hair and sweater cute, and he had freckles!! Freckles, V, and also apparently he adores the shit out of Patton which is even worse because I’m way too gay for this! I’m gonna die of gay overload and I’m not even angry about that.”
Virgil raised his eyebrows, blinking. “Oh wow, you really are smitten.”
“Shut your fuck,” Remy grumbled.
“You wish,” Virgil snickered, “so got any plans on how to woo this sweet angel of yours? What’s his name, by the way?”
“Emile,” Remy answered, slumping, “and I don’t know if I even want to pursue this, honestly -he’s my son’s teacher, for crying out loud!”
Virgil hummed. “Well, at least you already know Patton likes him. That’s one less thing to worry about, don’t you think?”
“I guess, but still-”
“You could invite him for dinner at our house!” Patton’s voice piped up from behind the bench, startling the both of them and sending Remy almost with their ass on the ground.
“Patton!” Remy squeaked, blush returning full force as they looked at their son’s innocent grin, “honey, what are you talking about?”
“You should invite Mr. Picani over for dinner!” the boy repeated, grin widening even more, “and then you can kiss and be in love and get married and then he’ll become my papa!”
Silence fell on the little group.
Then, Virgil rolled out of the bench onto the ground, wheezing in laughter as Remy let out a strangled noise, cheeks flushing with a blush so vibrant it could probably be spotted even in pitch darkness.
Patton tilted his head to the side, clearly confused, before shrugging bouncing back towards a little group of dogs to pet them. “Adults are weird.”
Remy knew their son had inherited some of their stubbornness. They’d just never realized just how much, until the kid decided that his only goal for the school year would be to set his ren and his favorite teacher together.
It was almost cute, really, to see him continuously drop some not-so-subtle hints about them going to lunch together -that is, if the simple thought of a lunch date actually happening didn’t reduce Emile to a stuttering mess and Remy to the best imitation of a red tomato the world had ever seen.
(Virgil found the entire thing hilarious, of course. Watching his best friend struggle with their hopeless crush on the cute teacher was quickly becoming one of his favorite pastimes -getting systematically pushed down from the couch by said best friend was a price he was more than willing to pay if it meant he could keep his front seat for the whole she-bang.)
This all went on for literal months, with Patton trying to “subtly” push two of his favorite adults together while said two adults seemed to lose any apparent braincell in their possession as soon as they were in proximity of each other.
Then, tired of playing nice, Patton got out the big guns.
“Ren?” he said one day, not looking up from his coloring book, “if you don’t stop being silly and go to lunch with Mr. Picani, I’ll tell him about the Doctor Incident.”
From the kitchen, Remy let out a startled sputter, fumbling with the pan in their hands as a now-familiar heat started spreading on their cheeks.
“You wouldn’t dare.”
“Would I?” Patton asked, blinking his big blue eyes at his ren.
Remy groaned, pinching the bridge of their nose. “You’re spending too much time with uncle Virgil.”
Patton simply gave them a dazzling grin, going back to coloring.
Remy -who wanted to keep some of their dignity, thank you very much- did end up asking Emile to lunch the following day, much to Patton’s delight. And you know what? It went even better than they could’ve ever imagined. They talked, they laughed, enjoying the meal and each other’s company with smiles on their faces and warmth in their hearts.
That afternoon, Remy bought their son an ice cream to celebrate -and to silently thank him, since they knew that, without Patton’s constant meddling, they would’ve never gathered the courage to actually ask Emile out.
Fast forward one month -and many other cute dates- later, the two were still going strong, and Emile had grown to become a beloved constant in the Astoreth household.
Like right now, for example.
Remy and Emile were sprawled on the couch, a bottle of wine and two empty plates sitting on the coffee table in front of them. They were enjoying a quiet night in, with Patton spending the night at his uncle Virgil’s place.
Emile let out a contented hum, his head resting on Remy’s legs as his partner gently cradled a hand through his hair. He could feel the four or five glasses of wine buzzing in his blood, leaving him feeling tipsy in the best way. He felt relaxed, at ease, and for the first time, Emile couldn’t feel an ounce of anxiety about being alone at home with someone he was undergoing a romantic relationship with.
For the first time since he could remember, there was no pressure, no expectations, no voices in the back of his head sounding so much like his parents telling him to just stop being such a prude, that he was just leading Remy on and that if he didn’t get over it already then they would leave him for sure, just like everyone else did.
Just like Aaron did.
Emile couldn’t help the little pang of hurt in his chest even after all these years, a tiny, dejected sigh leaving his lips without him even noticing. In some ways, Remy reminded him a lot of Aaron, with their witty humor and flirty, sweet advances -he probably had somewhat of a type, Emile mused as a tiny smile tugged at his lips.
He just hoped Remy wouldn’t walk away too when they finally learned the truth about him.
“Penny for your thoughts?” Remy suddenly piped up, startling the man in their lap.
“Uh?” Emile answered, much eloquently.
Remy snickered, and Emile felt a dopey smile form on his lips at the sound. “You were looking pretty deep in thought, babe. Wanna share with the class?”
“I was just, uh, thinking about some things,” Emile said, looking to the side.
“Good things or bad things?”
Remy snorted, shaking their head with a fond smile. “Fair enough. But please remember that if you need to talk I’m here, okay?”
Emile nodded, not quite trusting himself to speak -he felt as if there was a lump in his throat, his feelings and thoughts running wild in his head and making him feel dizzy as his heart beat wildly in his chest.
Emile was not stupid, he knew very well he had fallen hard and fast for Remy. And how could he have not? They were always so sweet and considerate, showering him with compliments and affection and never raising a single eyebrow at Emile’s quirkier habits and enthusiastic personality.
Emile didn’t regret it, not one bit. He loved Remy, and that was not something he could -or was willing to- change.
Which made the prospect of sharing his secret much more terrifying.
Unfortunately for him though, tipsy-Emile seemed to have even less of a filter than sober-Emile, and his mouth opened before his brain could properly register what he was about to say.
“I’m ace,” Emile blurted out, slapping a hand on his mouth immediately after.
Oh my gosh what the heck did I just say?! , he mentally yelled, bracing himself for whatever Remy would say.
He did not expect the soft laugh that reached his ears, the hand carding his hair not stopping its ministration as Remy didn’t even look up from their phone.
“Nice,” they said, leaving their boyfriend completely dumbfounded.
Emile stared, feeling his already-sluggish brain metaphorically break in his head as he tried to make sense to Remy’s nonchalant attitude. “What?”
Remy glanced down at him, a teasing smile dancing on their lips. “Hun, do you know what happened last time I slept with someone?”
Emil cocked his head to the side, clearly confused. “No?”
Emile blinked. And blinked some more. And then-
“Wait, do you mean-” he suddenly said, eyes widening in realization as he shot up from Remy’s lap, “you gave birth to Patton?!”
“Oh,” Emile said, flopping back down, “alright, a lot of things make more sense now, okay.”
Remy snorted, shaking their head as their shoulders shook in time with their laugh. “You’re really something else, Mr. Picani.”
Emile hummed, feeling as if he’d gotten a huge weight off of his shoulders as he cuddled closer to his partner.
A comfortable silence fell over the two, interrupted only by the occasional car driving through the neighborhood as they simply enjoyed each other’s presence.
“I love you.”
“I love you too.”