PART 1 / PART 2 / PART 3 / Afterword / Bloodline
Summary: Ever since your youths, the two of you have been quite the pair: the toddler son of a prostitute and the child-thief who protected him; a thug who could waltz and a whore who could kill; humanity’s strongest soldier and an officer’s mistress. And now, after years of separation: diamond and dust.
Word count: 13.1k
Notes: Sorry for taking so long! This
chapter was challenging for me to write, because the developments and conflicts
were so internal. I hope I did a good job of it in the end. Thank you so much
for sticking with me through this journey. I posted an afterword, because I am pretentious and overly attached to this fic lol.
The medic was occupied with those
hurt from the rescue operation. Next to the injured soldiers, they paid you no
mind. It was all right, Levi thought. Given your pasts, he simply assumed that
he’d be the one looking over your wounds anyway.
“I don’t have any,” you
protested. He frowned.
“You’re hurt anyway.”
From the way you went quiet, he knew
that he was right.
perceptive.” Your voice played at exasperation, but he could hear what was
underneath: hesitation, wariness. You were wary of him, he suddenly realised. Briefly, he thought of
the guarded expressions you used to wear after selling yourself. He thought of
the way you looked at him and Kenny after your first night at the brothel:
wrapped in blankets and three layers of clothing, looking at everything and
anything like it would hurt you.
It took you some time, but eventually,
you peeled off your shirt, then your pants. His breath caught at the sight of
your naked skin: not out of desire, but pain. His stomach curled at the sight
of all the green and purple that marked your flesh, the same way it always did
whenever you came home from your more violent clients. Most of the marks didn’t
surprise him. He knew that a lot of the injuries were from your suicide mission
in Mitras, from all the dodging and running and being thrown around.
But some of the bruises were old. From the way you moved, he knew that they still hurt, bones wrapped up in
blood. They were in places that would have gone unscathed during the battle:
your ribs beneath your breasts, the inside of your thighs, the space under your
collarbones, the skin of your neck.
They took two forms: small and in
clusters of five or ten, or entirely shapeless.
And just like that first night, his
Levi would have never let you go. He
was surprised that you didn’t understand this right away, but then again, you
He knew immediately that you were
different. He wasn’t stupid. It was as he’d said to you: you’d left him, and in
your life together in that city without stars, you would never have done that.
And it still showed, even if you had come back to him.
You no longer talked to people the
way that he remembered. You used to come home and throw yourself around his shoulders
and eagerly introduce yourself to whatever client he was seeing. What’s
your name? he remembered your lilting voice asking Jan. You never
sounded that bright these days. You never talked to other people, instead
smiling stiffly and silently next to him. Your hands often twitched, as though
you were on the precipice of reaching out to him, but being held back by some
invisible force. Your jokes were fewer. He could tell, from the way that you
laughed, that you were often sad.
Your smile was familiar, at least.
He recognised it as the smile you’d flash at him after getting home in the
early morning, trying to scrub off your skin. He had realised, when he got
older, that you were trying to wash away your clients’ touches, that you smiled
in that distracted way because you couldn’t stop thinking about them. It always
tore at him, the way you did that. Even though he had always berated you about
not washing up properly if he didn’t do it for you, that was the real reason he had started helping you clean up: so that you would stop
scratching yourself raw.
But he wouldn’t do that for you now.
He wasn’t sure that you’d feel okay with touching him.
And he wasn’t sure whether you loved
him. Not after all this time
You were not the girl he had dreamt
about for six years. He understood that fully.
He still wouldn’t let you go.
He owed you a debt from the day his
mother died. Ever since then, you had tried everything possible to make him
eat, make him strong, make him smile.
It was now time for him to repay
that debt. Levi would make you smile again, even if it took him the rest of his
Levi would make you smile, even if
you’d never love him again.