Hugs Before Toast

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Chapter 10

As they are going to the orphanage, Feuilly seems to be excited about going, mostly due to the fact that he is bouncing in his seat. Normally people wouldn’t look forward to going to an orphanage from years of being told by their parents that they would go there if they keep misbehaving and they would have to eat spouts there all the time. Or they are just screwed up from watching Annie far too many times, (Grantaire is positive that is what happened to him,) but Feuilly seems to be really happy to be going there. There is something about Feuilly that makes Grantaire feel a bit strange when he speaks to him. He doesn’t know what it is exactly, but if he had to really think about it, Grantaire would say it was the fact that he feels that speaking to Feuilly is speaking to the grandfather that you were rather scared of due to the fact they were strict and they seemed not to have no sense of humour. It is a massive problem for Grantaire, as he speaks mostly in sarcasm, and he feels that he can speak the way he normally does with Feuilly, as he is positive that Feuilly is going to lecture him on how to speak properly to adults and how he isn’t that funny. Grantaire is positive that his head is going to explode if he has to speak formally all the time.

It is not like he doesn’t like Feuilly, once you get past the fear factor that Feuilly has and the fact that the kid could rip out your kidneys with his bare hands if you pissed him off enough, and the idea that Feuilly probably knows like seven types of street karate and over one hundred ways to rip out someone’s balls or their boobs, (As Feuilly probably wouldn’t discriminate when he needs to kick ass.) and make them into earrings, Grantaire doesn’t mind Feuilly. In fact he rather likes Feuilly once he finds at least two different escape routes in whatever location he is, so that he can run away if Feuilly decides to go all whoop ass on him and decides to rip out his eyeballs and shove his fingers into the now empty eye sockets and pull out his testicles from the inside and drag them up to his body and put them in his eye sockets, just for the hell of it. Grantaire is positive that could only happen in cartoons, but he isn’t going to doubt Feuilly on what he can do to him, if he annoys the crap out the red head.

Well he doesn’t know Feuilly that well, mostly as he doesn’t see him, with the combination of three jobs that Feuilly has and some other commitments that he lets himself get forced onto, as according to Combeferre, Feuilly can never say no to people. Grantaire is doubting this, because when he asked Feuilly for some combat training and if Feuilly was in fight club and if he could join the fight club - just really for the banter of it and the stories that he could tell his grandkids if he made it out of fight club alive and with his testicles intact. Feuilly only glared at him and told him to go to hell. It wasn’t a direct no, but Grantaire was positive that Feuilly did say no, mostly as each time he kept asking Feuilly about fight club, the boy ended up sending him various threats about how he was willing to kill Grantaire with just a pencil and Grantaire is positive that Feuilly probably has at least seventeen different ways he could do it. Maybe this was a part of Feuilly’s fight club training, as the first rule of fight club was not to talk about fight club. But the one thing that he knows about Feuilly that he has been told from Enjolras is that he really likes kids, Feuilly doesn’t look like the type of guy to be attached to kids in one way or another, he looks more like the type of guy who would nurse a beer rather than a kid. But he was the one to suggest going to the orphanage on Christmas day, and much to Grantaire’s delight, he was the one who suggested that they should dress up on their trip to the orphanage.

“I really don’t like these tights.” Grantaire complains from the back of the car as he pulls a pair of red and green tights our of a plastic bag. “Why does Feuilly get to be Santa?”

Enjolras drums his fingers against the steering wheel and peers at Grantaire thought the mirror. “It is Feuilly’s idea and he is a ginger and the green doesn’t look good with his complexion, and the elf costume has orange on it.”

“Plus I think that I look rather good with a beard.” Feuilly chimes in as he is practically bouncing on his seat. “I can’t grow one,” He says mournfully. “I tried before but it looks like I had a beard, but it died and it has come to haunt my chin.”

“Maybe you will get a beard one day, Feuilly.” Grantaire says, “If I can transfer my hair onto your body I would.”

“I heard of organ donation, but hair donation is a new thing.” Enjolras says as he makes the final turn onto the orphanage.

“It sounds kind of gross.” Feuilly shudders.

“ It would depend where you got the hair from as well,” Grantaire says . “I reckon that I could give someone enough hair to last the rest of their life and that is just from my feet. I’m like a hobbit.”

Both Feuilly and Enjolras shudder at the same time and Grantaire only barks out a laugh. “Grantaire, I know that we are together, but you are shaving your feet before we go to bed tonight.” Enjolras commands as he parks of the car.

“That is just gross.” Feuilly says as he basically throws himself out of the car the second that it stops, almost doing a bit of a ninja roll as he opens the door, and running into the orphanage without even waiting for Enjolras to even park.

Grantaire climbs over to the front seat and he pokes Enjolras’s side with a long finger, when Feuilly leaves the car. “Are you actually wanting me to shave my feet?” Grantaire asks, knowing that if Enjolras did say yes to his question, he would actually do it, hell, he would even wax his chest if Enjolras had wanted him to do it. He would do anything for Enjolras if it was to make him slightly happier, and moving the earth seems a bit impossible, so it is the next best thing for Enjolras.

“It seems a bit stupid to do so.” Enjolras replies as he take off his seatbelt. “Your feet might get cold without your hair.”

“Enjolras, I am basically wearing a jumper with the amount of body hair on me.” Grantaire replies. “I am like a mammoth.”

“A cute one.” Enjolras says as he places a kiss on Grantaire’s crooked nose.

Grantaire turns bright pink and he can feel his ears burn, ever since he was younger people always had to say something about his appearance, it was always something negative about it. Well his mother used to tell him that he was beautiful, but Grantaire reckons that those are just a bunch of lies, as she lied about the Easter bunny and Santa. And to have someone like Enjolras tell him something nice about his appearance, it is something that makes him smile. It genially does, he believes Enjolras, even though Enjolras believes in those stupid things such as world peace and saving the whales.

“I didn’t know that mammoths could be cute.” Grantaire says with a smile forming.

“Well, it takes a special one to put up with someone like me for as long as you have.” Enjolras says as he places a chaste kiss on his cheek. “Come on, we need to do this thing for Feuilly or he is going to kill us.”

The two of them make their way into the orphanage and as they go into the door , they are greeted with the sight of Feuilly being tackled to the ground by a group of kids who are trying to all hug him at the same time. You can see more children then Feuilly, as he is almost completely covered by them. Feuilly is laughing loudly and he is greeting each kid individually with a large smile on his face. It is the happiest that Grantaire has ever seen Feuilly in the whole time that he has known him.

“Are you kids looking forward to be seeing Santa?” Feuilly asks the children, resulting in an echo of replies from the children, even the kids who look bored out of their minds look slightly intrigued by it. Grantaire knows that they are interested just for the presents as that it the meaning of Christmas these days, and not family and friends.

“Why don’t you all go into the main room and wait for Santa?” Feuilly asks and within seconds the children go off and they run into a room with a piano in it, dragging the people in charge with them. Grantaire only shakes his head in amusement about how excited kids get over people who are fictional creations made up by the money grabbing businessmen in suits. Even though Grantaire figured out the truth about Santa at a young age, he has to admit that the kids belief in the man in red is rather cute.

“Do these tights make me look fat?” Grantaire asks as he looks at his appearance in the long mirror in the bathroom. He was right in the car, his legs do not look good in tights. He is thankful that he is wearing dark coloured tights as his leg hair doesn’t show through the tights that much. He was willing to do that thing for Feuilly, but he wasn’t going to shave his legs for him and the kids. “I really don’t feel sexy like this.”

“You look fine Grantaire.” Enjolras says as he comes out of the toilet cubical wearing his own pair of tights also wearing shoes with bells on them that jingle with each step that he takes and a stupid hat perched on his curls that is covered with bells. He looks terrible in this outfit, but Grantaire thinks that Enjolras can pull it off, but he could be looking at Enjolras with rose coloured lenses. “We are doing this for the kids.”

“I know, but I am too tall to be an elf.” Grantaire says as he puts on his stupid looking hat.

“You could be one who was in a nuclear explosion and gained the ability to reach for things on shelves.” Enjolras says smiling widely.

“You are so fucking weird.” Grantaire barks out a laugh. “I thought that I would be used to this by now.”

“Well I thought that I would be used to your obsession with Glee.” Enjolras replies, “Why do you watch it?”

“I like the music.” Grantaire shrugs. “Plus Kurt is just a delight.”

“I was expecting more of a reason for it.” Enjolras says with a sigh of disappointment. “I was expecting a deep dark secret about it. You wanted to be on the show or something like that.”

“Are you ready yet?” Feuilly asks through the door. “There is a large crowd of children who are going to be annoyed if Santa doesn’t come within three seconds. James don’t look in the bag!”

“We should save Feuilly.” Grantaire sighs. “I just want to spend the rest of the time here with you.”

“I know but there are children.” Enjolras replies. “Come on, smile for the children. I like it when you smile.”

Grantaire puts on a smile, “Do I look better now?”

“Much better.” Enjolras says placing a kiss on Grantaire’s cheek.

“Who is the first to see Santa?” Enjolras asks as he looks at the crowd of kids, who seem to get even more excited than they were before and they start to jump up and down with excitement, and shouting and squealing their joys to see ‘Santa,’ or Feuilly with a fake beard and a red suite on. Feuilly is sitting on the arm chair in the middle of the room, looking slightly stupid as he the costume that he has got on is massive on him and he has tried to plump himself out. It is easy to tell that Feuilly is shoved a pillow under his shirt in the attempt to get the Santa pudge that the man in red is famous for, due to the fact that Feuilly’s stomach looks square.

Grantaire forces his eyes to move from Enjolras as moves his focus to the crowd of children and he scans it to find someone to go and see Santa first.

“Do you want to see Santa?” He asks a girl at the back of the crowd with long pigtails at either side of her head, and a teddy bear clutched into her hand hanging dangerously to the ground.

“He looks scary.” She says.

“Feu-Santa, is a very nice man.” Grantaire says in the kindest voice he can muster. “He gives us elves more than the minim wage, that is a great thing in this economy and he gives us paid breaks as well.”

“But you don’t need to know about that.” Feuilly calls over, throwing a teddy bear at Grantaire’s head. “I think the more important question is if you have been good or not?”

The girl makes no move to go and run towards Feuilly, instead she clutches onto Grantaire’s leg. The older children make their noises of displeasure and they grumble loudly about not getting their turn with Santa.

“How about we can go and sit up on Santa’s lap together?” Grantaire suggests, shaking his head about how weird his sentence sounds in his head, it is a sentence that he never thought that he would say in his life. “I will be with you the whole time.”

The girl nods but she still looks a bit hesitant. “I can make sure that Santa gives you a really nice present.” Grantaire says reaching out for her hand, she grabs it and they make their way onto the middle of the room.

“I’m really sorry man.” Grantaire says before he sits down on Feuilly’s lap, knowing that he is heavier than the average child and it doesn’t help that Feuilly could probably snap in half if he tried to get Feuilly to give him a piggy back ride. He feels kind of bad for Feuilly, but he doesn’t at the same time, as Feuilly gets to wear a cool beard and he doesn’t have to wear tights. The lucky bastard. Enjolras is standing in the back with all of the other children just watching the two of them in confusion as when does an elf ever sit on Santa’s lap. Maybe the ones who do, are trying to get in to Santa’s trousers, but that is the only reason that Grantaire can think of at the moment. He might spend some time on it later. He pulls the girl onto his knee and he can see one of the care workers taking photos of this scene. He knows that Enjolras would be doing the same, but he left his phone in the jeans pocket as there are no pockets in the elf costume and keeping his phone in his tights is a bit stupid.

“What is your name little girl, and Mr Elf?” Feuilly asks in his deep ‘Santa voice,’ that is only several octaves lower than his normal voice. Feuilly coughs a bit after he speaks as his voice is deeper that he is used to, but he covers the cough with making the Santa call.

“My name is Alice,” The girl says quietly.

“My name is Sandy the elf.” Grantaire says in his happiest voice that he can muster in this situation. Grantaire can hear Enjolras snort in laughter. He turns his head around and he sees Enjolras sitting on the ground with a group of children trying to sit on his lap and take off his hat. Enjolras is rather happy to let the children wear his hat and he encourages the children to take off his hat, so that he doesn’t have to wear it.

“What would you like for Christmas?” Feuilly asks.

Alice doesn’t say anything for a few moments before she whispers into Grantaire’s ear. Grantaire nods with an air understanding before he speaks up. “Alice is wondering if she can be a Princess for Christmas.”

He moves his eyes so that he is now looking at Enjolras. The face that Enjolras is making is just purely comical at the moment, with his mouth wide open and eyes wide as he is totally against children wanting to become members of royalty. He is just against royalty in general. Grantaire bites his tongue in the attempt to prevent himself from laughing out loud as it is just cruel to laugh at a child’s hopes and dreams.

“I think that you have been really good girl this year, and I think that I might be able to make that happen.” Feuilly says as he makes Grantaire stand up so that he can go into his Santa sack and he pulls out a present for Alice. She starts to rip at the paper straight away and she pulls out a tiara and puts it on her hair straight away. She looks so happy and Grantaire is positive that his heart just melted a little bit.

“Sandy?” Alice asks tugging on Grantaire’s sleeve a little bit as the next child starts to make their way onto Santa’s lap. “You didn’t ask for a present from Santa, have you been bad?”

“No, I haven’t.” Grantaire replies shaking his head. “I think that I have been a rather good elf this year. I have got what I wanted for Christmas already.”

“What did you get?” She asks sitting on Grantaire’s lap once they get back to the floor with the other children. “Was it a really cool present?”

“Yeah it was.” Grantaire replies. “You see the other elf there.” He says pointing into Enjolras’s direction. “He came into my life and I have been really happy ever since. We didn’t like each other very much at the start, but we are happy now. Very happy.”

“He is very pretty.” Alice says, adjusting her tiara to stop it falling down. “He looks a bit boring.”

“He can be at times.” Grantaire whispers. “But sometimes you need to get past that and then you find that someone is a very funny and interesting .”

“Do you think that he has been a good elf this year to get you?” She asks.

“I really hope so.” Grantaire replies as he looks out of the window and notices the first few flakes of snow falling down. “Oh, look it is snowing!” Grantaire points out as he looks over at Enjolras and smiles at him. Maybe he was a very good elf this year, but Grantaire had no idea on how he managed to do it, but he is not complaining.

“And this is why we say that Napoleon was a bad man.” Enjolras says over his cup of imaginary tea. “Does anyone have any questions?”

“Enj, it is time to go home.” Feuilly says looking a bit reluctant to go. He is covered in feathers and there is purple paint and glitter in his hair with a large pile of paintings and drawing in his hands. Even though he is in a mess, Feuilly looks happy though. Feuilly is always happy when he comes back from an orphanage, and Grantaire doubts that he has ever seen Feuilly happier.

“But I am teaching the children the problems of the monarchy.” Enjolras whines slamming his cup down on the little plastic table that he is sitting at. “They need to know about how Napoleon savaged France.”

“Enj, come on, it is time to go home.” Grantaire says taking a sneaky photo of Enjolras sitting on a tiny seat with wearing a tutu and fairy wings with a crown, waving a magic wand about passionately as he talks about Napoleon.

“But I don’t want to,” Enjolras whines. “I am educating children about what not to do if they ever decide to ravage a country.”

“You can come back with me at another time.” Feuilly says. “But these kids need to get dinner and head off to bed.”

“Fine,” Enjolras sighs as he stands up, throwing his tiara on the ground. He turns to the children at the table with him. “When I come back, we will talk about the monarchy and the French Revolution. I will even bring my books with me.”

“Okay, Mr Oranges.” The children say all at once, if it wasn’t so cute, Grantaire would be worried about how Enjolras would react to the way they butcher his name. Grantaire and Feuilly let out a snort when they hear the children try and say Enjolras’s name. The children couldn’t pronounce his name the first time that they met him, and Mr Oranges was the closest name that they got to Enjolras’s name when they attempted to say it for the first time, and Enjolras didn’t even bother correcting them, once he saw their confused expressions once he had introduced himself them.

“Don’t forget what we have learned today.” Enjolras says as he stands up to leave for the door, still wearing his tutu and fairy wings. “If you are going to savage a country-“

“Do it properly and not get the king involved.” The children finish off. Enjolras turns around to him and he has a look of pride in his eyes that Grantaire hasn’t seen before. Teaching the children how to be radical members of society is something that is probably frowned upon and it makes Grantaire roll his eyes, but just because it is nearly Christmas , he is going to let it slide, plus he is also impressed how children are taking Enjolras seriously while he is wearing a pair of fairy wings.

As Grantaire is about to leave the building, little Alice comes running up to him, still with her tiara on and her bear clutched into her hand. She throws herself at him and Grantaire catches her with good skills. “Mr R, I hope that you make Mr Oranges a very happy man.” She says. “You have to do what I say because I am a princess.”

“I will try my best, your highness.” Grantaire says putting her down and doing an exaggerated bow.

“Good.” Alice says adjusting her tiara once more. “Will you come back?”

“Of course I would Princess Alice.”

She goes up to Grantaire and places a single kiss on his cheek and then turns away to go back to her tea party. Grantaire lets out a chuckle, feeling slightly warmer than he has done in a while. He goes up to Enjolras and puts a hand around his waist. “You look good in wings.” He says.

“I know I do.” Enjolras simply says, as he gives one finial wave to the children before they leave the orphanage to go home to their small crappy apartment with Feuilly and watch cheesy holiday films and just not care about the world around them, and eventually see the rest of their friends and spend the rest of the term in the Musian drinking the worst hot chocolate in the world and just being happy.

As long as he has all of those things, Grantaire can’t complain and that is the first for him.

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