Mando seemed to use every opportunity he had to touch you. At first you didn't really notice it but the subtle brushes against your arms when he walked past you or the light hand pressed against the small of your back when he slid around you soon grew more frequent. Or maybe you just didn't notice them at first or didn't think about them much. You guessed that was just how he acted. That was until you realized that he avoided touching everyone else. When he needed to slide around anyone other than you, he very carefully moved as not to touch them. But with you that wasn't the case.
After a while you noticed that the subtle touches really weren't that subtle after all. And it annoyed you. You liked the way he brushed your skin, not to get you wrong, but it annoyed you how you were denied that kind of sensation, always feeling either leather or fabric. You couldn't give him the same tingle you always felt wandering down your back when he brushed your skin. You knew his armor was part of his creed, he had told you that often enough when you first got to know him.
"This is the way" as he always said.
And you would never do anything that would harm him and his creed that meant so much to him but the feeling of longing still stayed deep-seated in your heart.
And the moment you noticed that your heart sped up whenever he was brushing you, your daily life on the Razor Crest got a lot more complicated.
You were just standing in the lower level, rocking the little one to sleep in your arms after you had played with him for quite some time. You swore he had to be tired, he was awake for some time now, but the green bean refused to settle down alone. So, you had to rock from side to side on your feet, waiting patiently for his eyes to close.
After what felt like ages, the balls of your feet were surly sore, he yawned slightly, making you yawn as well, and then his eyes finally shut and stayed closed. Holding your breath, you stopped swaying for a while, waiting to make sure that he had fallen asleep at last. He didn't open his eyes again as soft snores left his mouth. With a relieved smile you put him down in his little sleeping quarters as careful as possible. Finally letting out the breath you were holding you took a step back only to bump into something, or rather someone. Startled you flinched and were barely able to clasp your hands over your mouth to hold back the yelp that threatened to escape otherwise. You would have cursed yourself if you had woken the little one up again.
With your back against his chest, you felt your body freeze up, your mind blank. Unable to turn around you just stayed still, breathing in sharply to recover from the shock. Normally you would have heard him, you grew more accustomed to notice the small noises he would make over the time you had now spent on his ship but it seemed like your tired mind had filtered them out this time.
"Sorry" the Mandalorian said and stepped back. However, he stayed so close behind you that you swore you could still feel the mixture of his body warmth and the coldness of his armor springing over to you.
Slowly you let your hands fall down again but stayed facing the child instead of the man behind you. Your heart was still beating violently against your chest and your face felt like it was burning from embarrassment.
You heard him shuffle, and you knew instinctively that he was peeking over your shoulder to look at the child.
"He's finally asleep" you whispered after you were sure your voice wouldn't waver, knowing without him saying anything or looking at him that this was what he wanted to know. You also knew that he probably was nodding when he didn't speak up again. You stood like that in silence for a few moments, your thoughts racing.
"Do you-" you started and turned your head to take a peek at the Mandalorian. He really was still standing right behind you, his head slightly lowered to look over your shoulder. Was he watching the child or was he looking at you? You couldn't tell right now, his eyes always hidden behind the dark t-shaped visor. He stood so close that you could see your reflection in the shiny metal of his helmet.
"Do you want to rest?" you finished your question, knowing that he had been awake for quite some time now, your voice soft and quiet. 'Only so the child wouldn't wake up' you told yourself but you knew you were lying. His head tilted to you, so you knew he was looking at you right now, though if he was already doing that before or not, would forever stay a mystery. He nodded. You returned the gesture, now turning around fully to face him. He straightened up but still didn't take a step back, his armored chest now only a few inches away from yours. He stood so close that you had to tilt your head back to look into his eyes, or rather the visor hiding his eyes. You had no idea how they looked like and probably would never get to know that but that didn't hinder your from imagining them. You never pictured a specific color but you always imagined them as warm and with a darkness to them that made them frightening to the ones who don't know him but welcoming to the ones that do. You noticed that you were staring for too long.
"I'll be in the cockpit" you stated hesitantly, not sure how to act and walked around him before you could make an even bigger fool of yourself. The faint brush of his gloved fingers against your arm as you walked past him didn't stay unnoticed anymore, as well as the shiver running down your back.
Normally you would sit in one of the co-pilot seats, glancing at Mando when he piloted his ship from time to time, but you had decided to settle down onto the pilot seat for now. The Mandalorian didn't need it right now and that seat was definitely the more comfortable out of the three.
With your legs stretched out and your arms crossed before your chest you looked out of the window, staring at all the light-streaks passing by. The autopilot was activated so you didn't have to do anything and could just relax. With a sigh you let yourself sink deeper into the seat, your spine curved and your head resting on your shoulder. After one eventful day after the other you really needed this, quiet and relaxation.
You didn't mean to fall asleep right there in the pilot seat but the smooth movement of the Razor Crest slowly lulled you to sleep.
Your dreams were often plagued by the things you had experienced the days before, merged with vivid images that left you confused after waking up. You couldn't remember the last time you had a through and through pleasant dream, probably before you had decided to join the Mandalorian but that seemed so long ago now.
So, whenever you were asleep a part of your mind always stayed alert.
That was why you jerked awake immediately when you felt something touch your shoulder. Your body was awake in the matter of seconds, your mind following with a slight delay so you were unable to register who it was. You wanted to jump up in fear but the hand on your shoulder gently pressed you back down. Your heart hammered painfully against your ribs in panic for a few more seconds before you finally realized that it was only Mando. Your fear vanished in an instant and instead you yawned and rubbed your still sleepy eyes, trying to ignore his resting hand that had wandered closer to your nape. You failed miserably.
"About three hours" he answered before you were able to finish your questions. "But you can get some more rest." You nodded and tried to let yourself relax back into the chair, however his hand on you made every little hair on your body stand up with anticipation.
You heard the faintest rumble from Mando's helmet, which shot a tingly sensation down your back. It almost sounded like a chuckle.
"I need the seat" he said and you were fairly sure you could hear the smile on his lips.
"There are two perfectly fine seats left" you stated with a grin on your lips and closed your eyes, slowly growing more comfortable with his touch on you. To be honest, it was quite nice. You couldn't feel his skin on you but you felt his body heat that loosened your tense muscles bit by bit.
"I need that seat" he repeated more pressing this time but still in a lightweight manner. You stayed put for a few moments more, enjoying his feather-light touch and the warmth on your skin for a few moments more before you groaned and stood up, his hand sliding from your shoulder in the process. You walked past Mando, noting how he ever so slightly moved his hand so it would brush against your own, and let yourself fall down on the seat to his right, too tired to go to your makeshift bed in the lower level. He stood beside you and glanced at you for a while, his helmet stayed slightly turned to you, you knew even after you had closed your eyes. Then you heard him shift and sit down on the pilot's seat. You crossed your arms before your chest and stretched out your legs again, trying to make the seat as comfortable as possible even without his warmth to soothe you.
"Why are you awake after only three hours?" you asked after a few minutes filled with silence, your eyes still closed. When Mando went down to sleep he never stayed asleep for long but you felt like it had a reason other than needing to be alert and looking after the ship this time. He also rarely answered right away, but you felt like he hesitated a bit more than usual. You opened one eye to see him stiff and frozen in the seat, his helmet facing the endless blackness of space. You immediately knew what was wrong, having felt the same way far too often.
He didn't need to answer for you to know. "I have them, too" you continued, hoping that it would let him feel at least a bit comforted. You observed him while he busied himself with flipping switches and turning buttons for no other reason than to appear occupied. You huffed and rolled your eyes at the stoic Mandalorian.
When he finally leaned back and let his arms dangle beside him stiffly you let your eyes wander to his gloved hand. Hesitating you reached for it. If he noticed what you were up to, he didn't let it show. Taking all the courage you had in you, you interlaced your fingers with his, immediately you felt his warmth again that made you relaxed. His body, however, went rigid. You waited, your eyes still trained on him, but when nothing changed you worried that you had overstepped. You withdrew your hand immediately only for him to grab it. Startled you paused, squeezing his hand as if to ask if it was okay. He squeezed back, his muscles finally relaxing under your touch.
"It's okay to have nightmares" you said, worried that he was avoiding to answer you just because he didn't want to appear weak. "You don't have to talk with me about them if you don't want to, but know that you don't have to be alone in this."
You closed your eyes again after that and drifted back to sleep, not noticing how he turned his head towards your interlaced hands and then to your face, never seeing the small smile that grazed his lips underneath the helmet.
When you woke up you were prepared to no longer feel your hand in his, only to realize that they were still interlocked. Confused you paused and just stared at your intertwined fingers before looking at the Mandalorian on the pilot seat. He still sat there like before, his other arm dangling down (not as stiff as before anymore), both feet firmly planted onto the ground and his head facing the window. You couldn't tell if he was awake or not. You didn't know what to do. Should you just stay put? But if he had fallen asleep and would wake up like this it definitely would be awkward. But ... if he wasn't asleep and already awake right now, he definitely knew you were awake too and it would be even more awkward. You tugged at his hand to test the waters. He didn't react so maybe he really was still sleeping? Not taking any chances you freed yourself from his grip and stood up quietly. You needed something to drink right now, or a cold shower at best because you already felt your cheeks burning up again. With your head low you didn't see his head had turned ever so slightly into your reaction, watching you as you left to climb down the ladder.
You had no idea how to act around him after that. The touches didn't stop, he still brushed you every now and then and you hold his hand wordlessly whenever you knew he had another nightmare. But you didn't know how far you could and were allowed to go. Somehow you were afraid of scaring him away, of overstepping. But after many months of only the three of you traveling through space you got a bit touch-starved. You felt yourself lean into his touches more often than not. So, you didn't want to do anything that would lead for him to stop that.
You didn't really have much time to think about all that anyway as the child often required all your attention when you weren't fighting or hurrying back to the Razor Crest. Like you were right now. You had volunteered to go to the marketplace to get a few more provisions, Mando obviously not very happy about that but you managed to convince him to let you go. It wasn't a particular dangerous planet and you didn't intend to be gone for more than two hours anyway. Also, you definitely did not stand out that much unlike him with his distinctive armor. However, maybe you should have known that life always had other plans. After all, you had never planned to end up traveling the galaxy with a Mandalorian and his adoptive son.
You were just sliding the last of your shopping money to the salesman, your two hours almost over, when you saw someone sneak towards you out of the corner of your eye. How you knew they were here because of you? Let's just say your instincts got a lot better after many months of fleeing and fighting and being constantly alert. You didn't wait for your change, grabbed your supplies, putting them into the bag that was strapped on over your shoulder and hurried into the large crowd. You tried to remember the things Mando had taught you, how to act if someone should ever be after you when he wasn't there. At first you had to try and lose the person. If that wouldn't work you had to find a more active way to get rid of them.
However, what you hadn't considered was that maybe that person wasn't alone. So, when you ran into someone and they grabbed you by the shoulders you knew you were in a lot more trouble than you had thought. Before you knew it, you were trapped between three larger men. Your breath hitched in your throat when they slowly shoved you to the side of the street, away from the curious eyes.
With your back facing a wall you let your eyes dart between the three men. One of them stood to either of your sides and the last one was standing directly in front of you. There was no way for you to escape.
"We know you have him" one of them said, shoving you hard so that your back collided with the wall. You gulped, swallowing down your fear and tried to clear your thoughts. You had to stay focused.
"Who? If you didn't notice I'm alone" you put on an annoyed expression and gestured around you. Maybe you could convince them that you weren't the one they were looking for.
"You hid him! Where?" the one to your left snarled.
"Maybe you didn't hear me the first time so I'll repeat myself: Who are you talking about?" you spat back. You couldn't let them see your fear.
"The child!" the one who had shoved you spoke up again.
"I don't have a child."
"We know you travel with the Mandalorian" the one to your right said, a wide grin on his lips.
For some reason that made your blood run cold. "And we know who you are. But you don't seem to know the price that is written above your head."
This time you couldn’t mask the shock that was showing in your wide eyes.
"Price?" your voice very noticeable cracked. The man nodded. You froze, blinking quickly, not processing what they just told you. You ... you had a bounty on your head? This wasn't good, not at all. You, Mando and the Child had to leave this planet immediately. You had to get away from them.
"I'm sorry, I think you have the wrong person" you said and tried to walk past them but they shoved you back against the wall, pinning you against it. The man that was pressing your shoulder against the cold wall fished a puck out of his pocket, activating it for you to see your face. You bit your tongue and gulped, before your face hardened. You had to get back to the Razor Crest.
"Don't touch me" you snarled with your fists clenched. With your mind on autopilot, you lunged at the man, punching him straight in the face. He reeled back, holding is bleeding nose. Immediately you leaped forward, trying to escape through the small gap you had created between the three men. However, the one to your right grabbed your bag, pulling you back. Spinning around you used the momentum and jumped against the man's legs that gave out beneath him with a deafening crunch. He howled in pain, letting go of you to curl around himself and protect his injury. When you turned around to try and escape again your breath was knocked out of you. You leaned forward by instinct, wrapping your arms around your side, where you've got hit by a blade. You had no time to recover or even think about the blood seeping through your fingers as the next blow hit your jaw. You let out a gargling scream, unable to hold it back, as the pain exploded in your face. By the way your vision turned dark for a split second you knew that your jaw was dislocated. The pain immediately pulsed through your whole body, leaving you strangely dizzy and nauseous and gasping for air, which only lead for the pain to get even worse. Disoriented you just stood there, hunched over with tears in your eyes. You were too unfocused on your surroundings, too consumed by the pain, to see the next hits coming. With a hard kick to your stomach, you hit the floor.
Maybe you blacked out, or maybe your brain just decided to turn itself off so you wouldn't feel the pain of the hits that followed. You knew you were repeatedly kicked into your stomach and side, against the knife wound. But you didn't really register that, you only managed to curl into yourself so at least your stomach would be protected, the hits to your side, however, didn't stop. Your mind was blank. You couldn't tell how long exactly you laid there on the floor. It could have lasted only a few seconds or an hour and you wouldn't have known the difference anymore. It felt like an eternity and only a heartbeat when it all suddenly stopped. You felt the heat hovering over your cowering form and only when you opened your blurry eyes and saw the fire above you. The two men screamed in terror as they ducked away, the jacket of one of them had caught fire. The two grabbed their friend who was also still on the floor and disappeared, leaving only the burning jacket behind. You let your body stretch out the moment the fire stopped, finally feeling safe again, though your mind was still dizzy and the pain still racing through your body, only vaguely remembering your bleeding wound. You saw a shadow leaning over you, hearing something but you couldn't match the voice to any face. Closing your eyes again you furrowed your brows as the pain got unbearable. Then you felt hands on your dislocated jaw. Your eyes snapped open one heartbeat before he forced your jaw back into its regular position. You screamed, pushing against him to get him off of you but he didn't move an inch.
"(Y/N)" a modulated voice said, as he caught your hands in his. Your screams died down and only heavy breathing was left, you had no energy left to do anything else. Your jaw still hurt but not as bad as before. "Calm down."
You blinked a few times until finally realizing who was kneeling next to you, finally matching the distorted voice to the shiny helmet that was staring down at you. You opened your mouth, wanting to speak up but immediately another wave of pain shot through you. Cringing in pain you only let out a pathetic wheeze and clutched your side.
"Can you stand?" You shook your head without even trying what he asked you to, knowing that your body ached too much to even move on your own.
With your consciousness constantly fazing in and out you only vaguely realized that he had picked you up and began to carry you back to the Razor Crest. The mix of warmth and coldness radiating from him and the pain numbing your side eventually lulled you into a restless slumber.
When you awoke neither in the cockpit nor your improvised bed but what seemed to be a metal box, you immediately panicked. With your heart racing your first reaction was to sit up, only for your side to explode in pain. A sharp yelp escaped your lips as you let yourself fall back. Whimpering in pain you stayed still, clutching your side.
You raised your head as far as possible to see Mando standing before the only opening to the box. That was the moment you realized that you were lying in his bed and your heart slowed in relief. Before it sped up again when you realized where you were lying.
"What-" you began to distract yourself from that thought, only for Mando to already guess your question and answer it.
"A dislocated jaw, a knife wound and severely bruised ribs." You tried to sit up again, but this time very carefully and slowly. With a wince you managed to straighten up enough to crawl to the end of the box and face the Mandalorian standing before you.
"I can feel that" you whispered with gritted teeth. You peeked up at Mando but he stayed silent. Even without seeing his face you could feel the death stare through the darkness of his visor. Lowering your head, you wrapped your arms around your middle. "I'm sorry."
The Mandalorian stayed put for a few moments before a sigh left his lips. "No, I'm sorry."
Confused you looked up again, raising one eyebrow. "For what?"
"For not being there." You sighed and stood up, clutching your side with one hand while holding yourself upright with the other one by grabbing the corner of the box.
"It's not your fault" you pressed out between clenched teeth before you froze up. Patting down your side as lightly as possible you furrowed your brows before lifting your head to meet Mando's gaze behind the helmet.
"Did you bandage me up?"
You could feel him stiffen up even more as a noise similar to an embarrassed sounding cough left his mouth. "Yes."
You let out a chuckle which fell short when you whimpered once more in pain. At about the same time you felt your legs tremble and give out under you. Mando reacted immediately, catching you with his hands under your armpits before you could fall anywhere near the floor. You hissed, tears sprang in your eyes right away.
Slowly he sat you down on his bed again, letting his hands rest on your shoulders for a while longer as if to reassure himself that you were alright. Then he pulled them back only for you to grab one and squeeze it tightly.
"Thank you" you whispered. He didn't say anything and just squeezed back for a few moments. Then he placed his other hand on top before letting go and taking a step back.
"You should get some more rest" he said sounding strangely flustered. You nodded and wanted to stand up to lie down in your own small bed only for him to gently press you down with one hand on your shoulder. You looked up at him with a puzzled look in your eyes.
"You can sleep in there it's ... a bit more comfortable." You felt your face heat up and eyes grow wide.
"O-okay" you said and shifted awkwardly. You two stared at each other for a while before he turned to climb up the ladder, leaving you alone and flustered in his bed.
Something you had forgotten to buy on that planet was more medicine. And not wanting to use up everything Mando had, your injury needed a few more weeks to heal than maybe necessary. A few weeks in which you mostly lied in Mando's bed. It still made you flustered.
Now, after over a month you were at least able to walk again, though the bruises on your side were still a dark blue and the stiches on your side formed into a scar. Which was the reason why you were climbing up the ladder to the cockpit right now. You needed Mando's help with the medicine and bandages. You gritted your teeth and forced yourself to reach for the next rung. Climbing up the ladder was a nightmare. Of course, you could have called for him but the little one had just fallen asleep and you definitely didn't want to wake him up any time soon.
"Mando?" you announced yourself when you walked to the cockpit even though he must have heard your cursing while climbing the ladder. He turned towards you. Catching your breath, you leaned against the doorway and held up the fresh bandages and ointment. "I need your help with these."
He nodded and stood up, guiding you to one of the co-pilot seats in which you sat down with a hiss.
"Why didn't you just call me?" he asked as you tried to get out of your shirt.
"I didn't want to wake the kid" you answered before letting out a frustrated sigh because you were unable to get the shirt over your head. Your side hurt a lot again today, making you incapable of raising your arms while simultaneously grabbing your top. Without saying a word the Mandalorian grabbed the ends of your shirt tugging lightly at them to signal you to raise your arms. Hesitantly you did as he requested and without much effort, he rid you of your shirt. He had helped you a lot over the past few weeks but never had he been the one to get your shirt off. Flustered you stared at the ground, refusing to meet his visor while he continued to work wordlessly on your bandages. You tried to ignore his feather-light touches against the skin of your stomach, back and sides but you once again failed miserably. His gloved fingers left goosebumps wherever they brushed your skin. Subconsciously you felt yourself lean into him, your muscles relaxing under his warmth and care.
You, however, weren't oblivious to the fact that his touches lingered a few seconds longer on your skin than necessary. When he brushed the skin inches underneath your bra your head shot almost instinctively around to face him. Your eyes wide and round, staring at him in shock and curiosity. He paused, his hands on your back and side. You swore you could hear his pulse quicken but maybe it was just yours thrumming in your ears. His helmet only slightly tilted down as he continued, keeping his eyes trained on your face. You knew this time without seeing them.
When he was done with it, he helped you back into your shirt. His hands hovering over your hips for a second too long to seem only accidental. You let out a barely audible huff at that.
"Thank you, Mando." He stiffly nodded and returned to his seat in the middle of the cockpit. You stayed put on the co-pilot seat, took one of the painkillers you had brought with you before continuing to stare outside the window, your thoughts running circles in your head.
"Mando?" you asked quietly after a while, your eyes heavy and constantly fluttering closed due to the pill you took. Damn, those things made you sleepy. He hummed but didn't turn around. You yawned, trying to clear the thoughts in your tired mind. Maybe you would have hesitated if you weren't so tired, normally you would have definitely never asked him the following question but your exhausted mind didn't care. "Do you like me?"
Even with your eyes half closed you saw Mando freeze mid-motion.
While you sat there in the co-pilot seat, your thoughts trudging through the fog of being half asleep, the thoughts of the Mandalorian were racing, eyes wide underneath the helmet. He didn't dare to turn around, only lowered his head in perplexed shock. He cleared his throat, failing to cover it up with a cough before speaking up. "Yes ... I like you." He turned his head enough to see you out of the corner of his eyes, to catch your reaction. You hummed in response and closed your eyes as a small smile grazed your lips. "I like you, too" you mumbled, barely audible before falling asleep in the co-pilot seat.
You couldn't belief you had asked him that. You never felt so embarrassed. You had no idea how to act around him now. If you should speak with him about it or if you should just ignore that it ever happened. Luckily, the Mandalorian had decided to not ask you about it when you had woken up so you just went along, pretending it never happened.
That was now about two months ago. By now your injury was finally completely healed and you could move without hindrance again. That also meant no more lingering touches from Mando though. You tried to not be too sad about that and instead enjoyed the rare occasion of holding his hand even more than before. You felt like he enjoyed it too whenever he had a nightmare, his muscles always relaxed within seconds. Not today though.
The second he walked back into the cockpit after only two hours of sleep you suspected that something wasn't right. When you intertwined your hand with his after he had sat down and he didn't relax how he normally would you knew something was definitely not right.
"Mando?" you asked, scooting closer to the edge of the seat and leaning forward to look at his visor as he stoically continued to stare in front of him. "Are you alright?" He didn't respond. You jumped up abruptly, startling the Mandalorian as he span around in his chair to face you. With a soft but stern face you tugged at his hand that was still in yours until he followed your lead and stood up. You knew he was confused you could almost see him raise an eyebrow at you from behind the helmet. But all those worries of overstepping you had for so long vanished in an instant. Without saying anything you stepped forward and wrapped your arms around him, pressing the side of your face against the cold beskar on his chest. He went as rigid as when you first held is hand all those months ago. He inhaled sharply, his arms stiff and uselessly raised as if he suddenly didn't know what to do with them. You could have hugged a rock and it would have felt the same, still you didn't let go.
"It's okay" you only said, not wanting to pressure him into answering anything he didn't want to. It felt like ages, the beskar slowly warmed up under your touch, when you felt movement coming from him. You didn't lift your head however, afraid he would just scold you for hugging him, thinking he was just going to tear you away from him. You hadn't expected for him to relax and slowly wrap his arms around you, too. Embarrassed you had to note that you were the one to stiffen up now. But your body soon melted against his again when you felt his hand run through your hair. You couldn't suppress the sigh that escaped over your lips. The warmth that suddenly radiated from him gave you a feeling of belonging you quickly found yourself addicted to when you tightened the hug, as if to make sure this was real, he was real. That he was hugging you was real. You couldn't believe that the Mandalorian was hugging you back.
If felt like an eternity and only a few seconds at the same time when you felt him move again. However, this time to end the hug. Already missing the warmth and feeling of belonging you reluctantly let go, your head lowered. Or at least you had wanted to stare at the ground in awkwardness again but Mando tilted your chin up with one finger. He didn't say anything when your wide eyes met his dark visor. He didn't even say anything when he brushed a strand of your hair behind your ear with such a softness that left you breathless. Your mouth fell open in shock and confusion but also surprise and longing. You wanted to reach out again, reach out to him but the intimate moment of softness ended within seconds. He took a step back and sat back down into the pilot seat, leaving you with your mouth and eyes wide open. He didn't need to say anything for you to understand that he had just thanked you. However, it left you even more confused.
You were on the lower level, playing with the Child when the Razor Crest suddenly shook violently, almost throwing you and the little one in your arms to the ground. Grabbing the rungs of the ladder leading up you managed to hold you upright. One second later a strident alarm started howling in your ears, making the little one squeak in discomfort. You hushed him, rocking him in your arm until another shockwave hit the ship. With your brows furrowed you looked up the ladder. As careful as possible since you only had one free hand you climbed up.
"What is happening?" you yelled over the shrill siren as you stumbled through the entrance to the cockpit. You only barely caught yourself by the doorway, the Child protectively pressed against your chest as the Crest rocked again.
"Bounty hunter" Mando growled and flipped a few switches. The alarm finally stopped. You let out a sigh in relief and walked to the right of the Mandalorian, where the child's crib was seated on the co-pilot seat.
You had just put the kid into its orb where it would be more stable and safer and wanted to walk to the other co-pilot seat when another shot hit the ship. You yelped and stumbled backwards, crashing against Mando and landing in his lap. You had no time to stand up and sit down in the other co-pilot seat, you didn't even have time to think about being flustered as he immediately wrapped one arm around your middle, pinning you in place.
"Hold on" he said before immediately bringing the ship straight down. You yelped and wrapped your arms around his neck and shoulders instinctively, pressing yourself against his chest as your stomach flipped in fear. He spiraled around, trying to lose the bounty hunter who was after you but they followed his every move and turn.
"I can bring you in warm or I can bring you in cold, Mando!" the bounty hunter snarled over the com, making your blood run cold as another round of hits shook the Razor Crest. You could hear the growl rising in Mando's throat, vibrating against your chest. Your face was definitely as hot as the lava rivers of Nevarro by now.
The Mandalorian let go of your waist and frantically pushed some buttons before he grabbed another switch, speeding up even more. Everything you had wanted to say, every word of protest was stuck in your throat as you just clung onto him, burying your head in the crook of his neck. Then he braked so suddenly that you almost fell off of him, since he also was pulled forward by the force of the sudden stop. You were sure you let out another yelp as you tightened your arms around him, clenching your eyes shut. Something hit the ship again and when you opened one eye to take a peek you saw the ship of the bounty hunter in front of you now.
"That's my line" Mando grumbled, and looked down at the aiming device that peeped before locking onto the other ship. Mando shot once, making the other ship exploded immediately.
After all that chaos and noise, the sudden silence seemed almost deafening. You stayed put on top of Mando, your arms still squeezing tightly around his shoulders. You were only able to let out a shaky breath as the stiffness of your body suddenly left you and you deflated like a sad balloon. Then you began to shake as the adrenaline left your body as well. You let out another shaky breath that almost sounded like a short, hysterical chuckle. Your heart beat so hard against your ribs you feared it would break them.
You turned to face the t-shaped visor, your eyes wide and panic-stricken.
"Let's not do that ever again. That was frightening!" you stuttered, burying your fingers into Mando's cape in a desperate attempt to ground you. The Mandalorian chuckled lowly, the rumble of it echoing in your chest.
"I think it's quite nice" he retorted rather smug.
You paused. He wasn't talking about the chase, was he? Was he ... referring to you still sitting in his lap?
Bewildered, because you would have never suspected him to imply anything like that, you silently blinked at him, suddenly very aware of his arm he had sneaked around your middle again. Your heart sped up even more, if that was even possible. You could almost feel the heat of his gaze on you, or maybe your face was just warming up because of your flustered state.
"Mando, I-" you started but got interrupted by the Child's squeals. Your and Mando's gaze immediately shot to him. He let go of your waist as you jumped up, cradling the little one in your arms to check if everything was okay. Luckily, he wasn't hurt, instead he much rather still seemed excited by the wild ride. You let out a relieved sigh. "Is he alright?" the Mandalorian asked and when you turned around to face him, he was staring straight forward, refusing to meet your gaze. Pretending as if he hadn't just told you he liked you on his lap.
Normally you were the one to initiate hand holding or a hug but this time you were the one to wake up in a cold sweat. You sat up straight in your makeshift bed, your hands shaking violently while your heart hammered against your ribs. With trembling legs, you stood up, glancing at the kid sleeping soundly before climbing up the ladder. You stood in the entrance to the cockpit before you knew what you were doing. But when you laid eyes onto Mando's helmet you froze, your words stuck in your throat. The Mandalorian, however, had already heard you approach and turned around to meet your teary eyes. Still shaking like a leaf in a storm you wrapped your arms around yourself and looked down. Why were you even up there?
With your thoughts racing you didn't register him standing up, or coming to a halt in front of you. Only when he wrapped his arms around you did you realize what he was doing. He was pressing you against him, hugging you. Your breath hitched and for a moment you felt stiff and perplex before you melted into his touch. Also wrapping your arms around him you pressed your forehead against the cold beskar armor. You couldn't hold back the one, single sob that had caught in your throat as you buried your fingers in the fabric of his cape, craving his touch, wanting to be even closer, wanting more. He didn't say anything, just slowly stroked over your head, tracing his fingers through your hair to soothe you. You couldn’t tell how long you stood there like this but it didn't really matter anyway, eternity couldn't be long enough.
When your mind and body finally calmed down, you had one question burning in your head you needed to ask. After all those weeks of pretending there was nothing said or done you couldn't keep quiet any longer.
"Mando, what is this?"
The Mandalorian stayed quiet for a while, delaying his answer as per usual.
"A hug." You let out a dry laugh and shook your head.
"No, I mean-" you started but bit your lip. Pressing the side of your face against his chest instead of your forehead you let out a sigh. "What is this ... to you?"
The Mandalorian stiffened immediately and you feared you had screwed up. The ship stayed alarmingly quiet you could only hear your heart pumping the blood through your ears.
"I'm sorry, you don't have to answer" you whispered and let go of him, ready to climb back down and hide in the covers of your bed forever. But the Mandalorian's arms stayed wrapped around you even when you pressed your hands against his chest in a weak attempt to get free.
"It's ... nice" he said, sounding almost frightened. Confused you tilted your head up to stare into the black visor of his helmet.
"Do you like me?" he asked quietly but with a smug undertone to it.
You could only imagine his proud grin underneath that helmet.
"Don't mock me!" you laughed and gave him a nudge against his shoulder which only made him chuckle. The laughter stopped after a while, left the Razor Crest completely silent again while you shyly smiled up at him.
"But yes, I do like you" you answered, feeling your face heat up. Mando remained almost frozen for a few seconds before he placed his head on top of yours, pressing your head gently in the crook of his neck with one hand while his other stayed on the small of your back.
"I like you, too" he responded, quoting you from all those weeks ago. He chuckled lightly but you felt it rumble in your chest anyway. You closed your eyes, smiling into the crook of his neck. It felt peaceful, like home. And even though you were standing you felt yourself drift back to sleep when he unraveled one of your arms you had wrapped around his middle. Even though you were confused you stayed tugged under his head and let him continue, eyes closed in relaxation.
But when he intertwined his fingers with yours, your eyes shot open. You froze, your mouth opened and closed several times without producing a sound. You pushed him away by pressing your free hand against his chest, staring at the one that was in Mando's. You didn't feel the leather of his gloves on your skin like all those times before, no, this time you felt his skin.
"Mando!" you exclaimed, your eyes wide in shock before they darted to his helmet. "Is this even allowed? Oh, kriff!" You closed your eyes even though it wouldn't make a difference anymore, the image of his tan skin had already burned itself in your memories. "Your creed, I don't know-" you panicked, stumbling over your own words. However, the sound of his laughter made you pause. Opening one eye you peeked up at him. He shook his head, still chuckling, then he held up your hand with his ungloved one so you would look at them again.
"It's alright" he only said. You relaxed and let yourself fall against his chest again in relief, taking in a deep breath. Lightly you traced your fingers over the back of his hand, feeling many little scars, each of them wanting to tell you their story. But surprisingly, even with all his scars and even knowing what his profession was, knowing how he was raised, they felt almost soft, strong but in a way shy. He returned your gesture, tracing the back of your hand as well. After all, this was also his first time feeling your skin. Your breath hitched, as his other hand slowly wandered from the small of your back to your waist, tracing your curves. Out of instinct you leaned into him and his touches, a soft sigh leaving your lips.
That was the exact moment you could hear the cry of the Child echo through the ship. Deflated you let out a groan, lightly slamming your forehead against his armor in frustration.
"Every time" you mumbled, earning another chuckle from the Mandalorian. He squeezed your hand one last time before letting go of you. You smiled up at him silently before going down to see after the kid.
After two hours the Child had fallen asleep again after some food and much convincing. You had climbed the ladder back up and were now standing in the doorway to the cockpit again, a coy smile on your lips as you watched Mando occupied with the controls of the ship. When he was finished, he leaned back and stretched his still ungloved hand out to you, not turning to face you, but you knew he was asking you to hold it again. You chuckled and grabbed his hand immediately, ready to sit down beside him only for Mando to pull you towards him. Before you knew what happened you found yourself in his lap with your feet dangling over him and down his right side once more. Blinking confused you turned to face him. He tilted his head in question as if to ask you if it was okay. You only squeezed his hand and smiled, letting yourself fall against his chest, head resting on his shoulder. Every last bit of tensions left your muscles as you yawned, nestling your face against his neck, enjoying the comfort that his skin gave to you. The warmth and safety that radiated from the Mandalorian slowly lulled you to sleep.
(Plothole: Why doesn’t the kid just heal you? Because we need that sweet, sweet content!)