Enough For Now
Silently stepping into the tea room, Rahas was surprised to find Lynus napping peacefully on the couch. And he was the only one in the room. A book rested precariously on his lap as he lay on his side. His eyes were closed gently, no hint of strain or pain anywhere to be found on his face. His hair was slightly dishevelled, as if he had a busy day.
At the hospital, it was no surprise.
Seeing that there was no one else around, Rahas wandered over to Lynus and stopped near him. It had been a while since he had witness Lynus so unguarded, especially in his sleep. He had seen Lynus asleep a few times before, during their time under that bastard's control.
He could recall them so easily. When he was younger, Lynus allowed him to share his bed on those cold, scary nights. He would hold him, and sing softly until he fell asleep.
…He had a lovely voice.
Rahas would never be able to thank Lynus for all he had done for him. For eight years he had stayed with him, sat by his bedside and patiently healed his every injury. His eyes, his voice, his touch was a gentle sanctity during a life of unease and intense harshness.
If it wasn't for Lynus, wasn't for his subtle compassion and affection, Rahas had no doubt he would have ended up like one of those brainless guards or like Avith himself. Bat-shit crazy from the suffering.
But Lynus kept him grounded, kept him hopeful. He would constantly push aside his own fear and uncertainty to help him, to help everyone within his care.
Each time a hostage would 'disappear', Rahas would see the utter pain and devastation in Lynus' eyes. The way his violet eyes would shimmer with tears he could not shed and swallow back his mourning he could not say. He would smile sadly and continue with his duties, all the while wondering, waiting for the moment where he'd be in charge of yet another hostage.
Each time that happened, Rahas' determination to stop that bastard once and for all grew in intensity.
Yet he was never strong enough. Never quick enough. Never skilled enough. He was never able to even approach that Taksony bastard. He was never able to get past that Avith bastard. He was never able to get past the hoard of unreasonably loyal guards. He wasn't strong enough.
He wasn't strong enough to do what Lynus was forced to do.
That was what really gnawed at Rahas the most. Sweet, gentle Lynus. He shouldn't have had to do that. He shouldn't have had to make the conscious decision to take out the threat to save others. He shouldn't have to carry that burden of having killed someone constantly hanging over his head.
Rahas wanted that. He wanted to be the one that take out that bastard. He wanted to be the one to carry that burden so nobody else should. That was his goal. His reason for life.
But he was too late…Lynus had reached his breaking point and had to take matters into his own hands to save everyone from a life of horror. And because of that, Lynus had to carry a heavy burden and Rahas had to find another reason to continue to live. And he thought he found that by becoming Lynus' bodyguard. He knew Avith. He knew that bastard would come for him again.
…And he did.
Despite his training, despite how his skills and strength had increased significantly under Hamza's tutorage, he still wasn't able to defeat Avith and protect Lynus. Avith had defeated him right in front of Lynus and Lynus was the one who was willing to push himself between him and Avith in order to protect him.
His goal to protect Lynus…failed miserably. As much as it pained him to admit; had Axel not turn up when he did Avith would have captured Lynus there and then.
"Hmm," Lynus suddenly murmured in his sleep, shifting a little so that he was lying on his back, his head resting against the armrest of the couch. Orange hair fellow across his face as his lips parted a little, subconsciously hugging the book against his chest. "…Axel…"
A part of him resented Axel.
That redheaded landsknecht…he was able to do what Rahas couldn't so easily. Within days, within hours of their reunion, he had Lynus smiling sincerely, had his eyes glimmering with hope of the future, had him laughing and enjoying life. Had him growing stronger as a person, not just as a healer.
But mostly, Axel made Lynus feel protected.
That was what Rahas wanted to do. He wanted to repay Lynus in the only way he knew how – by putting his life on the line to protect him. But, clearly, he wasn't very good at that.
Still…despite his resentment, he couldn't bring himself to out rightly hate Axel. He was, after all, good for Lynus. Lynus truly was safe with him and Axel has proved, multiple times, that he was more than willing to go to hell and back for him. He pushed aside his utter loathing for Avith to instead throw himself into the unknown to save Lynus.
Slowly, Rahas raised his hand to gently touch the side of Lynus' face, caressing his cheek in the palm of his hand and gently trailed his thumb over his bottom lip. Lynus sighed in his sleep and pressed his cheek further into Rahas' hand. But Rahas knew he wasn't responding to him. He was responding to Axel.
…Rahas would never be able to touch Lynus, to hold him the way Axel could.
Despite himself, Rahas found himself leaning forward, his face moving closer to Lynus' as he continued to trail his thumb against his lip. However, before he could press his lips against Lynus, something he had found himself wondering what feel like more than once, he heard a voice.
Dammit, it was Axel.
Immediately straightening his posture, Rahas removed his hand and moved toward the open window. He managed to slip out the window just as Axel stepped into the room. He glanced over his shoulder to watch as Axel immediately made his way over to Lynus sleeping upon the couch.
A smile appeared on Axel's lips as he knelt onto the floor next to the couch. Then, with a gentle hand, he brushed the side of Lynus' face, tenderly easing him into alertness. The book on Lynus' chest tumbled to the floor carelessly as Lynus sat up slightly and rubbed at his eyes. A heartbreakingly beautiful smile appeared on Lynus' lips as he gazed at Axel. Then, wordlessly, his lifted his arms and wrapped them around Axel's neck, pulling the redhead toward him. And Axel followed, his hands moving to rest on Lynus' side and leaned over him on the couch. It was no surprise that their lips met in an all too loving kiss.
Neither of them seemed concerned that someone might stumble across them like that.
Scowling bitterly, Rahas turned to look away and began to walk away from the inn. He didn't really need to see the two of them acting like that right in front of him.
Rahas winced and plastered a scowl on his face as he turned his attention to the unfairly mighty war magus. "What?" he asked him rather harshly.
Stepping from the shadows, Hamza stared at him for a brief moment before he unexpectedly sighed and shook his head. "Lynus may be safe with Axel. And Axel may be the most important thing to him, but that does not mean there is no room for you in his life. You are also a part of the lives of many."
With that said, Hamza quickly turned his back to him and moved to enter the inn. Rahas continued to scowl at his back, while inwardly he was a little flustered. He wondered mildly if Hamza had witnessed him, ah, watching over Lynus.
Startled from his thoughts, Rahas turned his attention back to the inn. This time, however, he was forced to tilt his head backwards so that he could look up at the second story of the inn. There, leaning rather recklessly out the window was Macerio and next to him, seemingly holding onto him to keep him half inside the building was Lirit.
"Come on, Matron is cooking roast chicken!" Macerio yelled at him. "You gotta try it before everyone else does!"
…Maybe his family had expanded a little. It was…enough for now.
"Argh, fine!" Rahas called back. "Just get your ass inside before you fall out!"
"Would you catch me if I did?"
"Just shut up and get inside!"
"Bet ya we'll get to dinner before you do~!"