The bus was surprisingly quick coming home, strangely enough. I seemed that whenever William was freaking out and wanted her home, the trip to the apartment complex took forever.
She was inside the building a few moments after that, up the stairs to their apartment. Hesitant, as always, when William begged her to come home. There was no way of knowing what awaited her on the other side. Gently she rapped her knuckles against the door before putting the key inside.
"Hey William," she said gently through the closed door as the latch clicked. "It’s me. I’m coming in."
That smile. That fucking precious smile. William’s gaze quickly shifted to the floor. He couldn’t do this. Not to her. Biting the inside of his lip to keep the bile in his mouth, he let his body fall the few feet back onto the sofa.
The landing was harder than he expected. He held his hand out to the the side, slightly curved, waiting for the cool touch of Eden’s nose on his palm. Not a gesture that the dog had learned in the field, but one he had learned in their household. Touch. Contact. Ground William in the present. Take him away from his thoughts.
William ran his hands around Eden’s head. Over his ears, down to his neck. Eden placed his paws on the man’s knees and panted in contentment. He knew that he was fulfilling his job. Speaking more to Eden than Yumi, William called, though now thoroughly engrossed in his pet. “So yeah. How are you? How are things? Fuck. I stayed away too long. Sorry.”
Doing her best to hide her worry at his actions, Yumi’s eyes still followed him from the landing on the couch to the way his eyes seemed to focus only on Eden, if they were focused on anything at all. He was avoiding her, avoiding something. It didn’t take a genius to see that.
Still she didn’t pry.
"You don’t have to apologize," she replied, her eyes travelling down to Eden for a split second, watching as he did was he was trained to do. Amazing. Yumi knew she’d never get over just how well he could read William. Better than Yumi herself it seemed sometimes.
"Things are….well the normal. Same old routine." There was a hesitation as she contemplating sitting down next to him or not. A decision was made and she plopped down on the couch beside him, close enough that he could reach for her should he chose, but still allowing him his space.
"Is there something bothering you William? You know you can talk to me about anything."
Fingers brushed this way and that over the dog’s short fur. Too focused. Too precise. It was clear that he was trying to make it look offhand, habitual.
"Maybe." His voice broke slightly. Clearing his throat, he tried again. "Still. It’s not fair. I leave whenever and you… you’re stuck." A second hand reached out for Eden’s head. Rushed. Too heavy. Desperate. He needed the cover. "Normal? That’s good right? Great? That’s what we’re aiming for so…" His voice trailed away as Eden’s paw landed on his knee. Shit. A telltale sign that not all was well in the man’s mind. Way to keep our cover, dog. ”So that’s great Yumes. Really really great! You’re doing really well.”
William pulled Eden onto the couch. Back to playing. Make that paw look like a plea for permission to play. He snarled and snapped at him. Roughhousing. Though Eden didn’t seem to approve of the activity. “Yeah, yeah, I know. But I’m fine. Fine. Stayed away too long. Fine.”
His head rose only to fall on her shoulders, the scent of the musky outdoors mingling with her own. A kaleidoscope of passionate moments and painful memories. God he loved that smell.
You’re not a bastard.
Relief flooded his mind. A numbness pulsed alongside the composite blood. Pathetic how a few words could cause such a reaction
How one person could.
"That’s never gonna fucking happen, Yumes. Never. I’m too much of a shithead to let you lose me.” The light glinted off the ring on her finger, distracting him from the muddle of words that was dribbling out of his mouth. Again, he buried his face in her shoulder. Soft skin. The perfect curve for his lips to kiss, his hands to caress.
"Fuck, Yumi. Why do we do this?" Exhaustion began to sound in his voice as well. "Just when things are going good. It’s like we aren’t satisfied with happiness. We’re just so—out of it. Like we think it’s our lot to suffer. Fuck that. Fuck that. I’m done. Done. I want to be happy. Finally. I want to be happy with you. Because you’re the only one that can do that. Can you make me a promise Yumes? Make us a promise? Whenever we feel this, this shit coming on again, we gotta do something. I’m not sure what, but something. I love you. I adore you. And I don’t want to jeopardize that.”
"I honestly have no idea William. I don’t know why we do this over and over again. Maybe because we’re both too damn stubborn for our own good. Prideful. Something. Or…perhaps we’re just so used to being on edge, that’s all we’ve done for so long that we don’t know how to remain happy. How to let those moments last.”
It sounded insane. It sounded completely bizarre but there was nothing in their lives that were exactly normal either. It made sense to her at least, and as long as she was aware, perhaps she could do something to stop it.
It didn’t mean they wouldn’t fight. That was just the nature of relationships in general and one as stressed and strained as their’s? Well they’d have to work extra hard to do that.
Yumi’s small hand found the back of William’s head and her fingers tangled up in his hair. Playing with it, keeping him close to her. “That’s the last thing I wanted,” she replied, closing her eyes, leaning into him. “Believe me on that.”
"That’s fucking bullshit." His voice, already soft, was muffled by her shoulder. By the overwhelmingly entrancing feeling he still remained unable to describe. "I don’t wanna fucking be fighting all the time because we don’t know any better. That’s dumb as shit."
A shiver ran from the base of his neck to the very tip of his head. A good shiver. Relaxing. Something that took getting used to after the feeling of claws and icy tendrils. “Iloveyoubaby.” One word. One giant mumble. One giant, happy, tired mumble. “AndI’msorryI’msorryI’msorryI’msorry.”
Was that a yawn prickling at the back of his throat? His weight fell forward slightly, relaxing fully in the comfort and warmth of the woman he loved. As if his weight would keep them from falling apart. “That’s dumb as shit, Yumes. Dumb as shit. Shitty dumb. I’m dumb. We’re dumb.” A smirk parted his lips as his hands found her waist.
No one ship is exactly the same. Each couple tends to come with their own quirks, their own traditions, their own struggles.
I’ve recently dug up an interesting article that categorizes relationships into 10 different kinds.
- Survival relationships
- Validation relationships
- Scripted relationships
- Acceptance relationships
- Individuation-Assertion relationships
- Healing relationships
- Experimental relationships
- Transitional relationships
- Avoidance relationships
- Pastime relationships
If you’re interested in using these to help you roleplay a relationship that seems in at least some way, realistic, continue reading.
- This is made up of people who don’t feel as if they can survive on their own.
- They feel as if they have to have someone be anything. In some cases it may literally be a case of survival.
- Think someone who provides shelter, food, job, money etc. It’s important to note that these two are codependent.
- The relationship is often hostile and sometimes abusive.
- Feelings of insecurity tend to run rampant!
- People in these relationships are those who seek validation of their physical attractiveness, intellect, social status, sexuality, wealth, or some other attribute.
- Teenagers and young adults who are looking for a sense of identity form relationships based on sexual validation.
- The relationship tends to be a little insecure and need constant validation.
- “Do you really love me?”
- Seems to be the most perfect of relationships and everyone around them sees it as a great relationship.
- The partners are the most perfect boyfriend or the most perfect girlfriend.
- There are often power struggles in this type of relationship.
- Sexual attraction or involvement if often lacking.
- The partners are often stuck in routines.
- A trusting, supporting and enjoyable relationship.
- A very healthy and happy relationship.
- Both individuals know what the others wants and needs are.
- Respect is a key factor in this relationship.
- Partners are supportive of others aspirations and dreams
- They both recognize their individuality.
NOTE: All types from here on tend to be transient.
- These occur after periods of loss, struggle, depression, stress or mourning.
- They’re looking for someone to “fix them”
- Couples tend to talk about the past and their losses a lot.
- Gentleness, support, and comfort characterize this relationship srather than great passion.
- These are experimental relationships.
- This is a relationship that is a cross between the kind of relationships you use to have the kind you want.
- An “almost but not quite there”
- They’re together but not close.
- They want to avoid their own deeper feelings.
- Don’t want to “get too close”
- Self-disclosure is low and mistrust is high.
- Just something recreational and for fun and games.
- Often emphasis is on fun and not deeper feelings.
- Not one likely to last.
- One night stands fall under this.
"Way to be an ass." He flicked the back of her head, still watching the egg. It fascinated him. Though he hadn’t been fed through a tube since the two prisoners made their escape, food still managed to capture his attention. Especially the process of cooking. The art was utterly foreign to him. With such foreignness brought a certain amount of trepidation. After all, Stewart had convinced him that solid nourishment was a waste and potentially dangerous. Regardless now that he knew otherwise, the doubt still tickled at the base of his skull.
"Do what you want. I really don’t care." William hoped his nonchalant attitude would cover any of his own misgivings. The truth of the matter was that he didn’t want to see the disappointment cloud Anthea’s face when he told her he couldn’t eat it. That there was a reason why he stuck to energy drinks, sodas, and candy. His stomach couldn’t handle it. Not since his near starvation at New Sun and certainly not since the possession on Lyoko.
He chose instead to rummage through what she had placed on the counter. Preserves, pickled vegetables, dried meats, and, yes, the coffee beans. He remembered the officers in the Marine corps talking about eating packets of ground coffee from the MREs when time was short. Shrugging to himself, he broke open the bag and popped a handful into his mouth. Not a particularly pleasant taste, but he needed the weak caffeine. Returning to the room next door, he shook the bag to get the woman’s attention. “Want any?”
"All you ever eat is junk food and caffeine and sugar. I don’t know how you’re even still functioning." She shook her head. "Don’t you need vitamins and protein?"
She had meant it as sarcasm but then she realized it was a question. One that had been bothering her since they had started living on the run.
She had never bothered to ask him about it— after all, he had just gotten out from Stewart’s questions and tests and the last thing he needed was Anthea being nosy. He deserved some privacy.
She slid the eggs onto the plate, picking at them with her fork. “Just, ya’know, the whole mom thing. I want to make sure you’re eating okay. I know it’s not ideal but you need more than just candy bars and energy drinks, right?”
William stared at his feet. “I dunno. They didn’t really tell me that shit. Seemed to do just fucking fine on missions and shit. Do what you’re told. Obey orders. Keep your fucking head down.” Without intentionally meaning it, he felt hurt. Interrogated. He shoved another hand into the bag of coffee beans and munched it loudly. Not that Anthea particularly owed him any particular kindness. He just thought, well, that it would be better.
"Sure, sure." He spoke rather cockily through a rather large mouthful of the beans. Though he looked dubiously at the fried protein. White and yellow globular circles. His stomach began to feel a bit queasy. "What… what do they taste like anyway? I mean, I might… I might not be able to actually eat that. Sugar and I have a relationship y’know.”
/Welp, this happened. First time I kinda managed to capture his baby face/dead eyes. Yay? Sorry this is all I got done today. It’s been rough.\
Smart Dumb Things - User Interface Models for the IOT & the Smart Home
Interesting piece from Mark Rolston on Fast Company:
The Future Of Smart Things Is Dumb. Frog’s ex-chief creative officer: There’s a better way to embed intelligence in our lives than surrounding ourselves with needy gadgets.
The dark side of the coin: could be the NSA dream home/bar too.