It’s Raining, It’s Pouring
Part four hype train 🚂 I finally finished it. Motivation and time have really been against me these past few months, BUT to compensate for it, I made this part longer :) Enjoy! Previous chapter can be found here.
Logan’s pen clatters to the floor at Virgil’s exclamation, alarm seizing his mind momentarily. He shakes himself quickly, however, pushing back from his desk right as Virgil skids into the room, barely managing not to fall over in his panic. So much for working. Logan mutters internally, though, as tears spring to Virgil’s eyes, Logan dismisses any resentment he might have been feeling.
“Virgil, take a deep breath and explain what is going on, please.” Logan instructs, feeling a stab of shame for not listening to what Virgil might have said originally, having been so intent on his work.
“I-It’s Janus, he-“ Virgil’s voice breaks as he lets out a choked sob, wrapping his arms tightly around himself in what Logan can only assume to be an effort to hide his shaking. The logical side searches the other’s face for any hint of what might have gone wrong with Janus.
“He what?” Logan urges, voice tight.
“He- he was upset and started panicking now- now he isn’t breathing, Lo.”
Logan can swear that his blood runs cold at those words.
Before he can fully register what exactly he is going to do in order to help, he’s moving forwards, around Virgil, already halfway to the door by the time that Virgil has even turned around to further explain the situation.
The world around him is blurred by the tears that have gathered in his eyes without him even realizing. Virgil tries to get a breath, tries to get a hold of himself, but all he can do is stumble numbly after Logan as the logical side swiftly navigates the many halls and corridors of the mind palace.
He’s going to be fine. Logan will help.
Even as Virgil tries to reassure himself, another sob tears itself from his throat. He would give anything to have Janus sneer and taunt him, brush all this off and move on as if it never happened. Vulnerability was never the serpentine side’s best interest. In fact, Virgil could swear that fear would be a viable way to describe it.
Dizzy as he is, Virgil manages to stagger into the living room behind Logan.
“What’s going on? I heard someone shout- is there danger?”
Virgil turns to look towards the doorway that leads to the kitchen, meeting Roman’s serious and yet worried eyes. He must have taken the other hall- his room is on the other side of the mind palace, after all.
“Roman-“ Virgil chokes out, silently cursing himself as he breaks down into sobs, sinking to the floor in a heap of despair and pure, unfiltered panic.
He can vaguely hear Roman shout his name, and by the time that his own vision comes back into focus, Roman is kneeling beside him, eyebrows furrowed in concern.
“What’s-“ Roman starts to ask once again, though Logan’s voice cuts through the fanciful side’s like a knife, cutting him off so sharply that Virgil finds himself flinching. Flinching? To Logan? Today is fucking cursed.
“Roman, the med-kit is above the sink in the small compartment with the Red Cross on it. Retrieve it, now.”
Roman wastes no time to dawdle or even ask why Logan seems so urgent, something quite rare for him. Instead, he scrambles to his feet, gives Logan a curt nod, and bolts from the room with an air of desperation about him.
Logan’s eyes are troubled, guarded as though to hold back the emotions he wished weren’t distracting him from the task at hand. Virgil sympathizes, yet he can’t find it within himself to confront Logan about his problems, can’t find the words to speak around the knot that seems to endlessly grow in his throat.
Roman’s return is everything but subtle. He nearly trips over his own feet as he enters, scuttling towards Logan like a very nervous ant. Even through all that he’s feeling, Virgil internally rolls his eyes. Does the fanciful side always have to have the spotlight?
Was that even Roman’s intention?
Virgil doesn’t know. His head hurts. His chest hurts. His heart hurts. He sniffles miserably, shakily clambering back to his feet, watching carefully as Logan takes the med-kit from Roman, kneeling down beside Janus. That look of indifference slips onto his face, but Virgil can swear that even the logical side is still barely controlling his emotions.
Roman backs off, giving Logan the space that he needs. The room falls silent. Deathly so. Virgil’s own fast-paced breathing startles him, each ragged inhale sending another jolt of panic free within his chest.
Janus’ breathing was like that. So fragile. Broken. He remembers that look of defeat on his face, resignation that Virgil couldn’t bare to see in the dark side’s- in Janus’ eyes. Janus wasn’t one to let go. Of anything. He knows the deceitful side is still holding Virgil accountable for leaving, for turning away from the self proclaimed ‘family’ that never truly felt welcoming to him.
But now, Virgil realizes why Janus was so heartbroken the night that Virgil left. It hurts so much worse, knowing that it’s Janus leaving this time. Leaving in a much more permanent way.
He doesn’t realize Patton’s entrance until his voice breaks the grim silence of the room.
“What’s going on?” He asks, voice tight. Virgil can tell that Patton knows, deep down, what is truly going on. He can feel it. He’s always been able to feel it, ever since Virgil was first introduced. Ever since he was a dark side, since he was anxiety.
Since he was with Janus.
“Janus isn’t….we…we’re trying to get him back.” Virgil explains, struggling not to burst into tears again. Why is this so hard? He hates Janus! Hates him so damn much!
“Wh…what do you mean? He isn’t….is he?”
Hates all that he’s done, hates that he never understands right or wrong, even when someone is at risk because of it.
Hates that he still remembers sitting next to him on the couch, watching Steven Universe, curled into his side after a panic attack.
“Can you hear me?”
Hates that look of dismay, despair, desperation as Virgil starts to back away, starts to leave him behind. Never to return.
Tears are freely flowing from his eyes now, hands balled into fists at his sides, knuckles white from the strain. Patton has one hand on his arm, a look of worry and sadness sitting like a heavy stone in his eyes. It feels heavy. This entire day feels heavy.
“Yeah.” Virgil answers stiffly, brushing Patton’s hand off. He takes a step back. Takes a deep breath. Stuffs his hands into his hoodie pocket.
“If…if I’m understanding all this right, he’s…not doing too well, right? But…he’s strong. He’ll be okay. Sprout right back up like a sunflower during autumn!” Patton beams, but the smile doesn’t reach his eyes.
“It’s summer, Patton. They mature best in pure sunlight. Summer produces the most sunlight.” Logan adds absently from the background, and Virgil finds the casual correction a bit reassuring.
Though, what’s more reassuring is the coughing.
Virgil’s eyes dart up, feet moving before his brain fully registers what’s even going on. Peering over Logan’s shoulder, he finds the best thing that he ever could’ve hoped to see. Logan leans back from the couch, giving Janus some space as he coughs and gasps for the air that his body just now realizes he needs.
Virgil can’t help a relieved sob from escaping his mouth, a soft smile coming onto his face. He shifts closer, gently helping Janus to sit up, wrapping his arms around him, even as Logan advises against it.
“He should be given space to fully come back from-“ He starts, but doesn’t get a chance to finish.
“No. I…I need…I need him here…” Janus rasps, his trembling hands curling into Virgil’s hoodie, grasping feebly, yet frantically at the worn fabric. Logan falls silent at that, nodding with a surprisingly empathetic look in his eyes.
“Will he be okay?” Roman asks from the background, wringing his hands together in a way that seems more fitting for Virgil than the fanciful side.
“I do not know. Someone will have to stay with him to monitor his condition.” Logan replies, starting to pack the items he took from the med-kit back into their designated places within the plastic case.
“I will. I’m staying with him.” Virgil startles himself with how firm his own voice is. Is he really that desperate to stay by Janus’ side? Surely not. He must just still be in shock. Yeah, that’s it.
Even as he thinks that, he carefully wraps a blanket around the deceitful side’s trembling frame, keeping him close in hopes that it will help to console him. His breathing is still uneven and sporadic- Virgil can feel the panic radiating off of him- but he knows words won’t do much to help at this point. All that he can hope is that Janus will find Virgil’s presence reassuring.
“I’ll stay, too.”
Virgil looks up, meeting Roman’s eyes as he finishes speaking. Surprise must be clear on his face, because Roman gives him an amused smile.
“What? Can I not make sure the residents of this palace are well cared for? I must protect those I have wronged, after all.” Roman declares, but Virgil doesn’t find it the least bit reassuring. Does he feel responsible for Janus’ plunge?
Is he responsible for Janus’ plunge?
And if he isn’t….then what is?
It has been a WHILE, hasn’t it? I’m so glad to be back though! I left this fandom for a while due to real life complications, and I haven’t actually opened Tumblr at all since…August? I think? Either way, I’m excited to get this done! The next part will be out soon, as well, as I do have my motivation back. Love you guys <3
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