Noble, 44

It’s Impossible to Get Over Someone Who Won’t Let You Move Past Them

Ao3 Link

Geoffrey shivered in the carriage, by himself. He’d been summoned to the castle by the king.

In the middle of the night. He’d been forbidden from bringing Javier. He hadn’t had any clothes to put on over his sheer loincloth. And the carriage wasn’t headed for the castle. He’d been in here too long, and it felt like they were going in the wrong direction, the wind coming off the lake against them. They were headed west.

Geoffrey didn’t know what Giacomo wanted. Once upon a time, he’d have had an idea, maybe. But now? Giacomo could want anything from Geoffrey’s head to a breakdown of the ownership agreements they had with the minor nobles in their region. Maybe he wanted to know how Geoffrey had reacted to Hansl’s presence in the house. Maybe he’d found out about Diego. Maybe he wanted someone to count his pubic hair. Maybe he was planning to have the house painted. Geoffrey didn’t fucking know and he wished that meant he could just sleep on the ride there, but he couldn’t, because knowing that Giacomo was unknowable didn’t mean he could tell his brain to stop spinning out every possibility it could. Maybe he was planning to upgrade Geoffrey and make him the castle’s butt-boy. Maybe he just wanted someone to walk Tobias Fellendart home.

The city was quiet, but Geoffrey could hear screams now and then.

Eventually the carriage rolled to a stop and the door opened, letting a chilly breeze inside. “In here, sir,” said the DiGorre servant who’d driven him.

Geoffrey nodded, climbed down. They were in a small courtyard off the back of a two-storey building. The stones were cold against his feet, so he didn’t waste time going inside. The door shut behind him, and Geoffrey heard the carriage leaving. He was in a kitchen with a stone floor, a doorway on the other side illuminated. He headed there quietly, finding a lantern. He was in the common room of an inn.

Not an inn. The Spongecake. The inn he’d been arrested in. The inn Giacomo had betrayed him in. Why had Giacomo brought him here?

To remind Geoffrey that he was powerless, no doubt. The common room was empty, dark. The stairs had a candle on them, and at the top, another light was shining.

Geoffrey considered leaving. The front door was right there, and even if it was locked, inn doors didn’t lock from the outside. Maybe ones that Giacomo owned did. But Geoffrey doubted it. He could just leave. Walk home. He’d freeze and probably lose a toe or something. But it might be better than playing whatever fucking game Giacomo wanted tonight.

Yeah. Fuck this, Geoffrey thought, heading for the front door. He put his hand on it.

Screams filled his head. He couldn’t. He couldn’t be out there by himself. He staggered back, nearly falling. What if they came after him again? What if they saw him? What if they did to him what they’d done before, but worse? What if…

It was stupid, it was such a stupid thing to think. There weren’t just mobs of people outside on the off-chance that Geoffrey might wander by in his loincloth to get gang-raped. That wasn’t how the world worked. It just wasn’t. There was absolutely no danger if he went outside. Someone might even see him trying to walk home mostly naked and help him. There was no danger. There was nobody out there.

He could still hear screaming.

Geoffrey turned and went to the stairs, paused, something catching his eye. The bar was right over there, clean and ordered. There were bottles behind it, and Geoffrey looked at them for a long time. A drink would calm the screaming in his head. Maybe. And it would make dealing with Giacomo’s game easier. Maybe. Or maybe not. And maybe it would make Geoffrey into something he liked even less than he already did. Maybe.

He went up the stairs, already regretting not taking a bottle of wine. There was an open door with more light coming out of it, so Geoffrey went to it, taking a breath.

It was what he assumed a normal room in an inn was. It had a bed in one corner, a small table with two chairs, a small armoire, a door on one wall that led either to a closet or a balcony. Giacomo was sitting on the bed, looking at his hands, hair blocking his face. “Hi,” he whispered.

“Hi,” said Geoffrey, lingering in the doorway instead of coming in. “What do you want?”

Giacomo just shook his head.

Geoffrey sighed. “Giacomo, I’m tired. It’s the middle of the night. You dragged me all the way out here. Just tell me what you want or I’m going downstairs.”

“I just…” Giacomo shook his head again. “I just wanted to see you.”

For fuck’s sake. Geoffrey rolled his eyes. “And you thought kidnapping me in the middle of the night was the way to do that?”

“I couldn’t let anyone see you coming to the castle.”

“I think you’ve well and truly put to rest any rumours that you’re taking advice from me,” Geoffrey sneered. “You could just tell everyone you’re bringing me to the castle to have me raped some more and they’d believe you.”

Giacomo nodded. “I know. I just…I’m sorry. You can go if you want. I just wanted to see you.”


“I’m not lying.”

“If you wanted to see me so fucking badly you’d think you’d have looked up by now.”

Giacomo looked away.

“Oh my God,” Geoffrey said, coming into the room. Giacomo moved away, and Geoffrey reached out to pull him up. “Look at me.”

“Geoffrey, just go.”

Geoffrey smacked him. “Just go? You forced me to come all the way here and now just go?”

“I’m sorry,” Giacomo whispered.

Geoffrey hit him again, yanking his collar to make him stand. He felt the room shrink, his anger filling up every corner of his vision. “How dare you? Treat me like I’m…how dare you?”

“Let me go!”

“Look at me!”

Giacomo did, his eyes rimmed with red, and he looked…

He was shrinking downwards, back, away from Geoffrey. From Geoffrey’s raised hand. His clenched fist. He looked scared.

He looked scared of Geoffrey.

Geoffrey let Giacomo go, and he fell to the floor, hand on his eyes. “I’m sorry,” Geoffrey said, all the sound in the world returning to the room at the same time. He crouched in front of Giacomo, hands on his arms. Oh god, why had he done that? “I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to, I’m so sorry, Giacomo, I’m so…”

Giacomo sobbed, lunging into a hug, arms wrapping tightly around Geoffrey. “I’m sorry,” he bawled. “I’m sorry, Geoffrey. I just really, I miss you so much. I’m sorry, I know you hate me and I deserve it but please, I just miss you. I just miss you.”

“I…” Geoffrey sat there a second, not sure what to do. Not sure what he wanted to do. He wanted to push Giacomo away, tell him he didn’t care. Tell him he deserved to be lonely. Tell him nobody missed him. He wanted to…

It didn’t matter what he wanted, because Geoffrey did what he needed to do. He hugged Giacomo back, pulling him into his lap. “I missed you too,” he whispered, rocking him back and forth. Giacomo was so heavy. “I missed you too, Giacomo.”

Giacomo looked up at him, eyes rimmed red, and Geoffrey should have stopped him but he didn’t. Giacomo kissed him, and Geoffrey kissed Giacomo too, and he should have stopped there but he didn’t, kissing Giacomo more and harder and longer, and he shouldn’t have let Giacomo straddle him but he did, and he shouldn’t have taken Giacomo’s shirt off but he did.

And they ended up on the bed together, and they held each other and kissed and at some point they were both naked, and Giacomo was right there, just like he always had been before, just like he was supposed to be, underneath Geoffrey. His legs were spread and he was moving desperately and Geoffrey’s cock was so hard and he wanted Giacomo so, so much.

And he didn’t have to take Giacomo, because Giacomo gave himself to Geoffrey, every part of him, just as readily as Geoffrey gave himself to Giacomo and always had, everything he had. And part of him still knew he shouldn’t, but he didn’t care because right now, right here, everything was the way it was supposed to be again. It was them again, the two of them together again, giving themselves to each other again.

Giacomo wasn’t crying anymore but Geoffrey was. They never stopped kissing as they made love on the small, soft bed and when they were done, Geoffrey rested his forehead against Giacomo’s, and they breathed each other in, and Geoffrey was still crying. “I love you,” he whispered to Giacomo. “I love you.”

“I love you too,” Giacomo whispered back, hands on Geoffrey’s face. “I love you too, Geoffrey.”

They lay there and held each other for the rest of the night. And for the rest of the night, they both pretended that everything was the way it was supposed to be.

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