|Nicholas Rowland (amending) wrote in nevermore_logs,|
@ 2016-10-08 23:03:00
|Entry tags:||jesse delacroix, nicholas rowland, saint patrick|
WHO: Nicholas, Saint Patrick, Open to the Haus of Sausage
WHAT: Saintly reassurances
WHEN: Midnight, Friday
WHERE: Haus of Sausage
WARNINGS: Talk of starvation and slavery
Some nights Nicholas slept like a baby, though he now felt like that was something of a misnomer, considering how often their baby son woke them up for late night feedings or changings. Others, sleep was more elusive, and not because there was a newborn in the room who required constant care.
On the nights when Nicholas lay awake, cold sweat sticking the sheets to his skin, all he could see when he dared close his eyes was That Room.
It had been months since he had been rescued from the room he'd been kept in, by the Antichrist no less, for nearly a month and a half. For those weeks alone in that dark room, Nicholas had been starved nearly to death and that wasn't even the worst part. He'd been alone. It had been so long since he had seen the face of anyone expect Joshua (the little shit) that he'd honestly started to believe he would never see anyone ever again.
By the time he'd been rescued, Nicholas had been skin and bones. He had gained some of the weight back, but he still had a long way to go. It wasn't even the physical recovery that was getting to him. It was the horrors behind his eyes.
Fully aware just lying in bed wasn't going to get him anywhere, Nicholas dragged himself out of bed and hobbled, stiff and unsteady, out of the bedroom and down into the sleeping house. He could hear one of the Delacroix boys snoring as he passed their bedrooms on his way to the living room on the ground floor. If he couldn't sleep, at least he wouldn't keep JJ and Jesse awake.
In the living room, however, he could not be comforted by the sounds of a sleeping infant in the cot beside the bed. There was no reaching over to run his fingers through JJ's hair, or placing his hand on Jesse's back just to feel the warmth of his skin. He was alone, and the fear could creep in, starting at the base of his spine and crawling it's way upwards until his breathing grew ragged and his heart pounded against his chest.
Fuck, what if the Antichrist took him away again? What if something else took him away?! Or worse, what if something took Jesse or JJ and locked them in a room. The idea of one of them screaming against the darkness, withering away while time seemed to stand still- It was too much.
Frantically, Nicholas leaned forward, his feet planted on the floor. He balled his fist into his shirt, over his heart, while his other hand tried to grasp the sofa to ground him to it. Panic was over-riding everything else. He wasn't safe in his own home, his loved ones weren't just upstairs, he was imagining it all, and he was back there in that damn little room-
It wasn't often that Nicholas prayed, and when he did it certainly wasn't to God. No, Nicholas prayed to the saints who had never betrayed him, Mary and Patrick. And he had no clue where Mary even was.
Before he could go further, there was a faint knock on the door, and Nicholas' head snapped up to stare at it. He was so shocked the panic was forgotten about. Because through the front door window, highlighted by the porch light, was the shadow of Patrick's hair.
"Are you fucking-" Nicholas stumbled to his feet and yanked the door open, staring at Patrick with shocked awe. "How the fuck did you do that?"
Patrick, who looked ever so slightly bemused, just slowly blinked at him. "Uhm. Do what?"
"How did you get here that fast?"
"I drove my car and- oh. Oh you think I- No, no, JJ called me about a half an hour ago. I drove here. I heard you pray just as I got out of the car. You thought I just kind of poofed here, didn't you?"
Honestly, Nicholas wouldn't have put it past Patrick. He'd seen the man do stranger things. He let out a slightly frantic chuckle and then put a hand to his forehead while he swayed a little, unsteady on his feet. "Of course. Of course JJ called you."
"Ooookay then," Patrick said, stepping inside. Nicholas felt Patrick take hold of him and without even paying attention, he knew Patrick was gently leading him to the kitchen. Patrick was kind of a silent genius. Of course Nicholas would feel better in the kitchen. It was where the food lived. He let himself be deposited into a chair and there he sat while the comforting sounds of a saint puttering around slowed his heart rate to something less than catastrophic.
The kettle flicked to life and Nicholas listened in silence to the rolling boil of the water. Sometime later a mug of hot tea was shoved into his hands, and the scratch of a chair against the linoleum told him Patrick had taken up a seat beside him.
The tea was warming and Nicholas gulped down several spicy, comforting mouthfuls before finally focusing on his friend. "What did JJ say?" he finally asked. It only felt fair to do so.
"She just said you were having a rough night," Patrick replied. His voice was calm and even and Nicholas closed his eyes to focus on it. Very few people could soothe his nerves like Patrick could. "And then she said she wouldn't normally call, but this had been the fourth rough night in a row. She's worried."
"I'm okay," Nicholas chanted, like a mantra. He didn't open his eyes. The half-full mug of tea warmed his hands, and that kept him grounded. "I'm okay."
"Of course you are," Patrick chimed in, cheerfully enough. "Physically, you're immaculate. I mean! Heh. I mean...you- You uh...are doing very well."
Nicholas snorted, and opened his eyes, since Patrick being awkward was to cute to miss. "Immaculate, hmmm?"
"Oh shut up," Patrick grinned before taking a sip of his own tea. "You know what I mean, but also yes. Do you want to talk about it? What you were going to pray to me?"
Nicholas let out a long breath and he shrugged slightly. "I have no idea what I was going to pray, honestly. Just. You I think. I just wanted you. And here you are, thanks to my amazing girlfriend who apparently knows what I need before I do. Fuck. I can't even close my eyes some nights, you know?"
"I do," Patrick said solemnly, and Nicholas raised his eyes to meet the saints. Of course. Of course Patrick did. Seeing the person Patrick was now, it was so easy to forget the man had been kidnapped at the age of sixteen, and held as a slave for nearly six years. And after all of that, he had still gone back to the land which had enslaved him, to try to save them from eternal damnation. Patrick was pretty badass, and he had suffered more than Nicholas would ever know.
"I'm such an idiot."
"No. No you're not."
"Here I am talking about my few weeks in hell when for you it was-"
"Nicholas," Patrick did something Nicholas didn't expect then. He gently took the mug out of Nicholas' hands, and then took both of them in his own. Nicholas found he didn't mind at all, especially considering the sense of calm and love he got the second his hands made contact with Patrick's skin. "Honestly? I don't want people to look at me and just think about the bad things that I experienced. I don't mind that you forgot. Nor do I think that just because my experience was longer, that means yours holds no weight of it's own."
There was something in Patrick's voice which made him believe the words without question. "It was horrible," he whispered. "I wondered if my socks were edible. And I kept...licking the walls?"
Patrick looked like he was chewing on his lips for a moment before he nodded. "I ate the food intended for the pigs one day. It was near the beginning of my captivity and I didn't understand why they wouldn't just feed me. I was so hungry I couldn't think straight and I grabbed a fistfull of swill and ate it. That act got me whipped for the first time in my life. And even after that there were days when I considered that maybe a whipping was worth it if I could just put something in my stomach. I understand feeling desperate and alone, Nicholas. The truth was though, I never was."
Nicholas laughed, though there wasn't much mirth behind it. "Are you going to tell me about God now?"
"Oh fuck no, I mean you have me!" Patrick grinned and winked. "I had God. He got me through the hardest times once I turned to him. But I would never force that belief on someone else. I mean...not any more," he said, looking somewhat sheepish since he had, in fact, done that to an entire fucking country. "If you chose to believe in God, great. But you'll always have me, regardless."
At that, Nicholas pulled his hands away, but only so he could bodily lean against the saint, his head resting on Patrick's shoulder. "Thank you for coming for me," he whispered, his voice barely audible.
Patrick didn't answer, he simply wrapped his arms around Nicholas, holding him tight. There, in the arms of a saint, Nicholas felt safer than he had in months.