Imagine- It’s the morning after Eric offered to help
you get to sleep, and now you must put aside all awkwardness and pretend
it never happened in order to focus successfully complete the mission and
But what if Eric doesn’t want to pretend it never happened?
What if he wants something more than just a thank you in return?
Birds were beginning to chirp away into the morning, their
chatter hitting your ears and causing you to open your eyes as well as you
Your head was tucked up comfortably against someone’s
stomach, huddling into the warmth of their clothes. The rise and fall of their
chest and abdomen with each breath had you calm and relaxed, your breathing
matching their pace.
A large, gentle hand was resting on the small of your back, pausing
from its steady rhythm of rubbing up and down, before leaving to fall back to its
Blinking the much-needed sleep out of your eyes from one of
the few night’s sleep you have had in over a few weeks, your eyes adjusted to
the soft light that fluttered through the trees.
And they also adjusted to the person looking down at you.
When you saw Eric looking down at you.
Realization was slowly beginning to dawn on you, as you remembered
just how you’d come to find sleep in the first place. Just how you’d come to be
in this position in the first place.
Eric helped me. That’s right. Now I remember.
“Good morning” his sleepy voice greeted as you began to
shift your weight, sitting up and abandoning the man’s comfortable embrace
Running a hand through your h/c hair that was slightly frizzy
with tangles, you looked around, remembering that you were in the middle of the
forest in the middle of pretty much nowhere.
“Morning” you mumbled in response, shaking off the last bit
of dreariness that tried to cling on.
“Haha. I take it you’re not much of a morning person?” Eric
asked, shifting to stretch his arms and legs that had been sitting in the same
position for the past few hours.
You grinned at him. “Hey, that was the best night of sleep I’ve
had in days. Can you blame me for wanting to savor every bit of it?”.
The tattooed man shook his head. With his ruffled hair and sleepy
fatigue, you almost couldn’t take him seriously. Of course, out of respect, you
did take him seriously. It went both ways.
“Of course not. And you have me to thank for that” he grinned
back up at you.
You sighed, smiling softly as you rose to your knees, and
then your feet.
“You’re right. I do have you to thank for that. So thank
you. You helped me out a lot. I feel a lot better”.
“No problem” Eric replied, standing up with you, running a
hand through his dark blonde hair to smooth it down.
You began to fix your own hair back into a ponytail and out
of the way, and you could feel Eric’s grey-blue eyes watching you as you did.
You looked up at him to indeed see that he was looking at
you, his jaw clinched, and his eyes slightly squinted, as if trying to figure
“Something wrong?” you asked, snapping him out of his
The man cleared his throat and shook his head. “No. Nothing’s
You nodded in acknowledgement. “Good. So. I’m thinking……………I
need to repay you for last night somehow. I mean, you might not think you
did that much to help, but to me, sleep is the one thing I know I need but can
never get. You did be a big favor. I only see It fair to repay you”.
Eric looked a little stunned there for a few moments, and no
words escaped for a little bit.
He tapped his chin, the cogs of his brain whizzing around and
ticking away at an idea.
He met your eyes again, and you were starting to grow
suspicious of the smirk that climbed onto his face. “Yeah. I have an idea
actually” he chimed.
You tiled your head in encouragement for him to speak.
“Okay. How about a date?”.
You thought you misheard him somehow. You didn’t think this
was logically possible or accurate.
Just to be sure, you echoed him. “A date? Like………as in a date date?”.
“Well that’s what I said isn’t it?” he chuckled in reply.
Your mouth was hanging open to wide it would have been possible to touch the ground. So this was possible.
Your cheeks were glowing, and you could feel it, and you
were also sure that Eric could see it from a mile away.
You stuttered for
words, trying to figure out what to even say.
“Uh….um- Y-you know what? I think it’s time we get going and
get this mission done. I’m j-just gonna go wake the others and then we c-can go”
Wow. What a smooth topic change. You idiot!
You eyed the rifle on the ground carefully, chewing through
your lip, wondering what to do with it.
You picked it up and held in the shaky breath that wanted to
Especially now that you’d already made a fool of yourself in front of
him, you couldn’t let Eric see how weak you were too.
You turned heel and made way over to where the other soldiers
were sleeping, leaving Eric to stand there in the clearing, a small, goofy
smile on his face as he shook his head.
That girl is hopeless. Hopeless and clueless. Hopelessly keeping
her guard up, and cluelessly making me fall for her.
The rest of the day was spent driving through bushland in
the rovers, discussing plans and figuring out where to go next. They were
headed for Amity, believing that no Dauntless would ever want to go into the
They’d be out of their minds. Those people were crazy and didn’t
take kindly to faction members.
If the culprit was sheltering in any faction, it would be
You’d purposely chosen to drive one of the cars that Eric wasn’t
You didn’t think you could deal with the embarrassment of
being in the same space as the guy.
Your cheeks were still buzzing every time you caught a glimpse
of his face in your revision mirror, and he would always smirk when he caught
your eye. You almost cursed him out, if it hadn’t been for the sense of politeness
that still hung about you.
You were driving in the lead of the group, the other cars
were following your lead as you travelled in through the open gates of the Amity
field, and over towards the buildings.
Your foot was steady on the exhilaration, and you pulled
down the road towards Johanna’s headquarters.
Finally pulling up, You stopped the car and got out, letting
the door fall shut behind you as you did.
The other cars had pulled up, and you did your best to hold
in a scowl as Eric came to walk beside you up to the office doors. You’d left
your own gun in the car. You went under the excuse that all the other soldiers had
their guns, so you were pretty set when it came to outnumbering one guy on the
“So. You gonna keep on ignoring me all day?” Eric asked, clicking
You didn’t appreciate how close he was to you, keeping pace
with your hurried steps.
“Yep” you say, giving the ‘p’ that extra pop to make you
You heard him chuckle. “Awwww. Is someone too embarrassed
to talk to me? Hmmm. Too shy?”.
You did not appreciate how close he was now. His
shoulder barely brushed with yours as you walked side by side, and it didn’t help
with that annoying tone he was using, talking to you as if you were a baby.
“Nope, not embarrassed. Just trying to concentrate, and I cant
do that when you keep distracting me”.
“Oh so I’m a distraction huh? A good one I hope” the
man replied, and you rolled your eyes, pushing the button for the service bell.
“No. You’re a bad one. We’re trying to catch a
killer, Eric. Like you said last night, I have to be at the top of my game. I cant
be that when you keep annoying me” you huffed.
You felt a sense of relief when someone came to the door and asked you what you were doing here.
You continued on to recite the situation, just that someone you were looking for had escaped from Dauntless custody, that they were dangerous and possibly seeking shelter here in Amity.
After consulting with Johanna, you and the Dauntless soldiers were given permission to search the area.
Of course, no surprises, Eric chose to keep following you around while you searched around the horse stables.
“Are you sure you aren’t just ignoring me because you know that deep down, you know you like me back?” he whistled, following you in through the doorway.
You searched the stalls for any sign of a person hiding, being careful not to spook the horses in the process. You were lucky that they were pretty good tempered.
You tried to ignore what Eric had just implied, that he liked you.
It hadn’t occurred to you before that this could be possible.
“I’d have to be insane to like you” you chimed back, ears buzzing as you walked out the other end of the stable doors.
“You keep telling yourself that sweetness. But you know, I can see you blushing. Blushing is a symptom of embarrassment. Or, it can be a symptom of being around someone who makes you nervous. Nervous or excited. Or both. Do I make you nervous?”.
You felt chills down your spine when Eric came up behind you, his cool breath touching the exposed nape of your neck.
You refused to shudder. You refused to let him have the satisfaction.
A thing you had also learnt about your friendship, you were both competitive, and as mentioned, stubborn.
You opened your mouth to tell him to fuck off and make himself useful, but before you could, something flashed in the corner of your vision.
You snapped your head over to look out across the daisy field, catching sight of no doubt, a person running.
Their clothes were a black blur against all the yellow, and they seemed to be limping. You remembered that the prisoner had been described to be wearing all black, and his leg had been cut while one of his victims had fought back.
That has to be him. Why else would he be running?
“There he is! Let’s go!” you screamed, and without waiting for Eric’s response, you took off at the highest speed your legs could carry you.
The Dauntless leader followed in pursuit, not nearly as fast as you though.
He wondered how such short legs could run so fast.
But then again, you weren’t promoted to Dauntless’s best soldier for nothing.
You sighed with relief as you leant against the side of the rover, watching as two other soldiers carted the unconscious form of the prisoner inside the Dauntless compound and back down to the containment cell, where he would be monitored heavily and never let out of sight.
The mission was finally over.
You and Eric had managed to take down your target out in the Amity fields, after a surprisingly long chase. He’d put up a decent fight when you’d got to him, but Eric had managed to hold him down and knock him out, making the process of cuffing him and tossing him into the back of the rover easier.
You both worked well together, that was for sure. And you didn’t want to admit it.
But you were starting to think that Eric might have been right.
I think……………I think I like him. Maybe I was just too much of an idiot to see it before, or maybe I wasn’t letting myself see it before.
Maybe I was too worried about what he felt, that I wasn’t thinking about what I felt.
Maybe I like him as more than a friend.
Maybe I should give it a chance.
You sighed heavily, turning to see where Eric had even gotten off to.
He had began to head inside, decidedly giving up on pestering you for the day,
But maybe it wasn’t too late for him.
“Hey! Eric! Wait- wait up!” you called out, your footsteps echoing on the pavement as you ran across the clearing to catch him before he passed through the compound entrance.
He stopped and turned around abruptly, hope lacerating through his eyes.
Maybe she changed her mind after all.
You weren’t expecting him to turn around so fast, and it resulted with you accidentally bumping into his chest.
Stumbling back a little, you blinked, heat climbing to your features when the man smiled down at you, his piercings gleaming silver in the light of the sun that streamed down.
“Oh, look who’s running after me now?” he teased with a shine in his eye.
He watched, pursing his lips as the stragglers that had fallen loose from your ponytail blew in the gentle breeze, across your face, and he wanted to just reach out, smack your hand away and tuck it behind your ear for you, so that he could see those gorgeous eyes.
But he knew it may have been too soon. He wasn’t too keen on ruining the moment.
“Uh haha…………..yeah…………listen- about before. I didn’t mean to hurt you or anything by ignoring you…………that probably wasn’t cool of me to do………a-and I’m sorry-”.
“Hey. It’s cool. Don’t worry about it sweetness” he shushed you, patting your shoulder.
Your eyes locked with his, and you suddenly became lost for words.
You hadn’t noticed how intricate they were before. Dazzling with blues and greys and hazels. They reflected the sunlight, and you could even see yourself in the reflection too.
If only you could know how mesmerized he was by you.
“So…………about that date?……….uh…….I was thinking I’d actually like to take you up on that offer………..” you trailed off, tilting your eyes down to look at his feet, anything to hide the redness on your cheeks.
Eric raised his eyebrow. “Oh? What did you have in mind then?”.
“My place, dinner, drinks, seven. You in?” you asked, finally locking eyes with the other man. That handsome man.
Eric squinted at you with a playful look. “Thought you said you’d have to be insane to like me” he commented.
You rolled your eyes for a few moments, definitely eating your own words.
You finally just shrugged, smiling in return. “Well, maybe we can be insane together?”.
A victorious smile broke out onto Eric’s face. And this time it was genuine.
He wasn’t holding back. He didn’t need to. No one was around but you and him.
“Now that sounds like a plan sweetness. I’m in”.
And that’s how Y/N L/N and Eric Coulter came to be one of the most well known, well respected and most feared couple of Dauntless, some might say in all of history.
You were the first to ever get through that wall that he’d put up around himself.
You were the first to be able to so much as make him crack a smile from all the way across the cafeteria, you could make him almost choke laughing in the most serious of times.
He could give you butterflies just by winking at you from across the pit, and he could always cheer you up, and of course, help you sleep when you needed it the most.
Now, months later, lying in bed side by side on a hot summer’s night, the blankets were pulled back, and you both were talking peacefully.
You had that connection, without the need for sex. You actually really only ever did it when you were both in the mood. Once a week maybe?
And you were both content with that. You didn’t need to be constantly crushing each other to know how you both felt.
You were about to close your eyes, after years of struggling to find a solution to your Insomnia, you finally had found it. Sleep came easily to you now.
You were about to let yourself drift off, but before you could, you felt Eric squeeze your hand, rubbing his thumbs across your delicate s/c skin.
“Hey Y/n” he whispered, shimmying up closer to you.
“Mmmm?” you asked, half mumbling, peeking open your eyes to look over at your boyfriend who lay facing you.
“I love you. I really, really do” he whispered.
Every time he said it, a smile practically smacked you instantly in the face.
But this time, something felt special about this time.
The sincerity. The happiness.
You reached up and stole a kiss from his calloused lips, not at all minding the rough texture as they touched your soft ones.
His hand slipped up to cradle your cheek, his thumb stroking the skin underneath your eyes as you pulled your lips back.
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Imagine- You, one of Dauntless’s best and most prized
soldiers, are leading a mission alongside Eric and a squad of regular soldiers
to hunt down an ex-Dauntless member and prisoner who escaped after murdering a
You are at the end of your turn to keep nightly watch when
Eric decides to take over.
But you are having trouble sleeping, so Eric offers to help
The cold chill of the night had begun to seep through you
now, and it touched your face, turning your cheeks a light rosy red colour.
sat just away from the squad of soldiers that you were assigned to, leaning
against a fallen tree, a large torch sitting on the dirt by your side, allowing
you to see into the trees up ahead. A rifle sat within the quick reach of a
hand away on your other side. You kept it there and refused to rest it on your lap.
You didn’t want to touch that thing unless it was absolutely
You were much more skilled with hand to hand and knife
combat, rather than shooting, either at close range of long-distance. And you didn’t
like guns too much. Bad experiences and painful memories were all they remind you
of every time you pressed your eye to that scope, pinning your sights on your
target. Every time your finger pulled back on the trigger, launching the bullets
from the chamber.
Every time another innocent person fell dead at your doing.
Regarded as one of Dauntless’s bestsoldiers, if not the
best. You were expected to carry out your duties without question, and so
you always did, without fail. You were respected and seen as a high status then
of that a leader.
Fear was not an option.
Your fear of guns could not be let known to anyone. You hid
it well on the battlefield. You blocked out that anxiety and fueled your
actions with the dedication to your faction, even if you knew that what you were
doing was so terrible and wrong.
It was the way things had to be. In Dauntless, hesitating was
not an option.
Your breath escaped in thick clouds of fog, and you watched
as it floated up and away into the starry night sky. You sighed, wishing if
only this night didn’t have to be so stressful.
A Dauntless leader, dead. Two initiates in intensive care
and at least five other witnesses either killed or injured badly.
And an ex-dauntless fugitive on the run, armed with who
knows what and prowling around who knows where.
You’d been sitting here on your turn as watch for the past
hour and a bit, making sure that your group’s surroundings were safe enough to
sleep in for the night, before continuing on the hunt once daylight broke
through the trees.
You didn’t mind taking extra time so that the others could sleep.
You weren’t one to sleep much on missions. You liked to be awake and alert at
Unfortunately, your insomnia was visible on your face in the
form of dark, sleepless circles around your eyes, and your slightly sluggish
movements. You wouldn’t admit it, but you were begging for even just a few
winks of sleep. Your eyes threatened to close themselves at any given moment,
and your eyes were playing tricks on you in the darkness.
It’s been a few days since I’ve even had two hours of
sleep in a row. With the events of the murders two nights ago, the endless hunt
to track the culprit down, and trying to stay safe and vigilant in the middle
of it all, I haven’t found time to sleep. This is mymission. I can’t afford
to miss any important details.
“You cold Y/n?”.
Your teeth were chattering so loudly that you were sure the
other factions could hear you from out here in the desolate forest.
You were shivering violently but silently underneath nothing
but a plain thin black long-sleeved shirt with a bulletproof vest underneath, and
a pair of tight-fitting combat trousers made of hard-wearing cotton.
You didn’t turn your head to look at the person who spoke,
approaching from behind.
Their smooth but stern voice was enough to go by for you to
know that it was Eric Coulter who was speaking.
You were both what you’d call friends. Not best friends, not
good friends, just mutual friends.
You both respected each other and your strengths and offered
each other improvements for your weaknesses. You both never usually hesitated
to jump in and give the other a helping hand if necessary and could both be as
stubborn as cows about it.
You had each other’s backs, and you worked well as a team,
as many people had told you. Although Eric could be an asshole at times, you never
took any of his teasings to heart, and vice versa.
And although neither of you showed it often, especially Eric,
you cared about each other a lot. Enough that If something bad were to happen
to one or the other, you would be there to help, or in some cases, be there to
“A bit. I’ll manage though” you acknowledged him as he lowered
himself to take a seat with his back propped up against the fallen tree beside
you, his legs stretched out in front of him like yours were.
You sat with enough space between the two of you for a third
person to sit in the vacant cap, provided you moved your gun.
Looking at you, Eric’s lips twitched up into only the
slightest of smirks, one that could be seen only if you looked hard enough.
“You sure? You’re shivering like crazy” he nodded to your
shivering body, your red hands clasped together to try and get a bit of heat
flowing into your system.
You nodded. “I’m sure”.
You weren’t though, you were freezing to death, and you were
damn well certain that your companion could tell that.
Eric nodded, taking your answer as a sign that you didn’t want
or need his help.
Both of you sat there for a few moments of silence, studying
every sound and every sight that you caught from the bushland around you. You
could hear birds calling out in the distance, and owls hooting in the treetops that
stretched high above into the indigo almost black sky.
The man beside you turned his head, and you could feel him watching
you as if expecting you to turn and look back at him, so you did. His grey-blue
eyes were twinkling in the reflection of the torchlight, and his eyebrow
piercings glinted as well, his neck tattoos hidden by the collar that travelled
up to protect him from the cold.
“Anyway, I came to tell you that I’m taking over now. You
should get some rest” he told you, that authority demanding look in his eyes
that told you;
“No, you have to get some rest. This isn’t a choice”.
But persistently, you shook your head, blinking your e/c
eyes reassuringly at him. “It’s okay. I’ll stay on for a couple more hours”.
But of course, Eric wasn’t happy with the answer he got.
He shook his head, clenching his jaw. “No. You won’t. You look
like you could fall asleep at any moment. Which is a sign that maybe you should
You knew where he was trying to take this conversation, and
you knew that you couldn’t afford to give in to sleep. What if our group is
attacked and I’m not watching? What if all of us have to fight and I’m still
lying there snoozing my ass off? I am a professional soldier, and it would be
most undignified of me to give in.
You shook your head with a little more determination. “I
said it’s okay. I don’t need to sleep. I will keep going”.
“And I said that you won’t. Y/n, you need to sleep.
You are the best tracker on this team and probably the most skilled fighter
here. We need you to be at the top of your game if we run into trouble tomorrow,
and you can’t do that when you’re dragging yourself around, torturing yourself
for no good reason” Eric retorted sternly. He was just as persistent as you, it
Another thing you had learned about Eric.
He liked things to go his way, and he liked people to do things
He wasn’t bossy though, just strict, as a squad leader
should be to keep his people safe.
You sighed, blinking harshly, trying to erase the sleep from
your eyes and stay focused.
“I’ll be fine. I promise” you argued again.
But the leader wasn’t having any of this.
“You’re wrong. You’re not invincible, Y/n. So stop pretending
to be. If you don’t sleep soon, not only will you be putting your health and
potentially your life at risk, but you will be slowing down and putting the
rest of us at risk. So go, get some sleep. That’s an order from your leader”.
You lower your eyes to look away from him, resting your attention
on your feet as they scuffled the dirt beneath your combat boots. You bit your
lip harshly. If only it were that simple for you.
“No. Eric you don’t understand……………it’s not that easy………I………..I
can’t sleep” you trailed off, inhaling deeply through your nose.
You heard Eric scoff, and you shot him a glare as he spoke.
“I wouldn’t understand? Oh please. Sleeping isn’t that
hard Y/n. I think you’re being a bit dramatic. Just try closing your eyes.
Simple” he rolled his eyes, pulling your rifle over to his other side.
Frustration crawled up your spine like a warm fire. It was
times like these when sometimes, even if you respected him, you didn’t appreciate
his shit talk.
“I’m not being dramatic Eric. I have insomnia. A literal
condition that prevents me from being able to sleep properly. So yes, for me,
sleeping is that hard. Closing my eyes won’t do anything to change that”
you snapped back at him, crossing your sluggish arms over your chest.
A simple “Oh” fell from Eric’s pursed lips, followed by
what sounded like a quiet, brooding sigh.
Silence followed after that, for quite a few minutes.
When you stole a glance over at the man beside you, he
looked to be in a state of contemplation, as if he couldn’t decide what he
should do now.
Another sigh escaped through Eric’s exhale, and he met your
eyes, this time with a little more of a smile on his face.
“I think I have an idea. Stay here, I’m gonna go grab the spare
blanket from the rover” he leant against the tree behind him and rose to his
feet, before turning and disappearing into the dark abyss somewhere behind you.
After a few minutes, the Dauntless leader returned, carrying
with him a thick, fluffy blanket, the one that had been tucked away in the trunk
of the car for spare.
You watch as he stepped over the tree to take his place
again, stretching his legs out again.
Taking a breath, Eric finally looks over at you. “All set.
Now come closer to me”.
You look at him with an incredulous look in your wide e/c
eyes, lips parted as you laughed a little. “Umm……….what? Why?”.
Eric let a chuckle fall from his lips, careful as to not
wake any of the other soldiers, and he patted his thigh, gesturing for to you
with his hand.
“You’ll be more comfortable this way. And warmer. Come rest
your head on my lap. I’m gonna help you relax. Even if you don’t fall asleep,
you should still rest”.
He didn’t look like he was joking, nor did he betray any sign
that he was giving you a choice.
So with a defeated sigh, you gave in and shifted over to
Eric, breaking the spacious gap that had once loomed between you.
You settled your head comfortably down on his lap, face up
towards the sky, looking up at him as he continued to pull the blanket up over
your body, leaving out only your face.
Eric drew his hand up and let it rest on your forehead, his
calloused fingers tickling a little as he strummed them across your soft, clear
skin and down your cheeks for a few minutes. He stroked back your hair, scratching
his fingertips down against your scalp and then slowly running them through the
h/c locks that were sprawled out across his lap.
Every time his fingers came into contact with your scalp, moving
down to massage your neck and then your ears, you couldn’t help but sigh
silently. Whatever this was, you had to admit, was starting to work. Who would
ever believe that the big bad tough Eric Coulter was sitting here, a girl resting
on his lap while he massaged her?
This seemed to be kind of surreal, and you were trying to
savour every moment you could. After all, you might never see this side of Eric
Your eyes were starting to drag themselves shut like
weights, and your breathing fell into a steady and more relaxed rhythm.
Until finally, it evened out, and your eyes fluttered a little.
You’d finally fallen asleep.
Eric sat there, still entertaining himself with your hair
and skin. He liked the way the softness felt beneath his rough hands and
fingertips. Not only were you so relaxed, but he was too.
When he finally had noticed you fell asleep, a satisfied,
genuine but small smile came to his lips, and he paused his hand from stroking your
neck, lifting it off.
He pushed back the yawn that tried to pry its way out of his
mouth, and he looked down at you.
With your delicate, petite lips, your gorgeous shiny hair
that he seemed to find himself unable to stop touching, your divine s/c skin,
smooth as he glided his hands over it.
You were every bit as beautiful as he had always thought you
He hadn’t possibly thought you could get any more beautiful.
You could fight, you could shoot, you could throw a knife
and hit the exact bullseye with your eyes closed. You were hard-working, and it
You were every bit deserving of the life you had. And deserving
of so much more.
If only he could give more to you.
Right now, it’s me that isn’t fit for her. She’s
the whole package. Beautiful face. Beautiful heart. Beautiful intimidation.
Shit, she makes me nervous sometimes. She has no idea how hard it is for me to just
sit here and not have a nervous breakdown. She’s just as stubborn as me, and I’m
intrigued by that.
Swiping his thumb over your cheek, he picked up a fallen
eyelash that had strayed down onto your face with his finger, and he blew it
off, making a wish like the little kid inside of him used to do.
And then, he swooped down slowly, and pressed a gentle,
chaste kiss on his sleeping beauty’s nose, finding himself satisfied with the
way his lips pressed against your delicate skin.
He could only hope that one day, sooner rather than later, his
wish might come true.