Flopping over to the side and sprawling himself out over his lover’s legs, Ronald got an irritated pouting look upon his face. He and William were still in the infirmary, and had been looked at and treated, but the doctor had wanted to run some extra tests on the baby’s well-being. And they had been waiting for an hour for the man to return with the test results, “Will…make him come back faster! I’m hungry!”
William chuckled lightly, rubbing gently at his lover's side and back (he'd been doing so for the last half an hour). "If only I could, love, but I can’t. But after this, we'll go get some ice cream - does that sound okay, hm?"
“Ice cream…and chicken? Maybe with some chocolate fondue?” he asked hopefully, turning big pouty eyes upon his lover.
"Fondue?" William frowned slightly in confusion but shrugged. "I don't see why not." Glancing down the hall, he perked up at the sight of the doctor approaching with a clipboard, and thoughtful look on his face.
“What? It sounds good!” Ron boasted, before following his lover’s gaze to the doctor as the man entered the room. He sat up, eager for the man to say what he needed to say so that they could go to dinner. “Good news, I hope? The baby is fine?” he asked when the man stepped in and closed the door behind him.
William gently took his lover's hand, standing up carefully in heed of his injured leg. The nurse had mentioned he'd be wearing a brace for another week or so before his leg would heal. But while it made walking rather awkward, it was not necessarily uncomfortable.
"Your baby is perfectly healthy, no issues... or rather, 'babies' would be the more appropriate term, now." the doctor explained, dipping his head to the two Reapers. "Congratulations, you're the mother of twins."
Ronald’s eyes widened, “T-twins! But how—“ he turned and looked at William, “This is your fault, then! Not my dad’s genes at all!” he accused, his mood swinging from calm to annoyed.
William sputtered. "How is it my fault? I- Oh... right" he blushed sheepishly. Then came the disturbance in the force. Seeing his lover's mood change faster than a traffic light, he went into his instinctive defense routine - feign sad guilt, pouting slightly whist looking down to the floor. It was a method of high skill and practice, only perfected by the most expertise - hereby meaning, if he didn't get something thrown at him or mauled, it worked.
The doctor chuckled, “I am sure your mood about this news will soon change.”
“I don’t want it too!” Ronald rounded on the doctor, “I was shocked enough finding out there was one!” but even as he spoke he felt himself calming, and he slumped back in his seat, running fingertips over his belly.
William said nothing, understanding the anger and confusion Ronald felt. He himself had gone through the same thing upon discovering his own pregnancy, and knew it was better to let the blond vent than react to his behavior.
However, he inwardly cringed at the doctor's next suggestion.
"Well, there is always abortion..."
“NO!” Ronald growled, before the doctor’s words even had a chance to register in his mind.
The doctor blinked in surprised at the sudden reaction, but pressed no further.
William smiled softly, carefully leaning over to stroke his lover's cheek.
"If there is nothing else, Dr. Franz, then we shall take our leave" the Reaper stated, reaching down to help the blond up.
The doctor nodded and stepped to the side, “Remember, the options are open to you.”
Ronald huffed, and would have stormed out if his back didn’t hurt so much. So, he let William guide him out. “Imagine! Suggesting we kill our baby—s…babies!”
"He was under the impression you didn't want them." William explained, using careful words to prevent from upsetting his lover. "But never mind him, he's never been very polite with words..."
He rubbed soothing circles into Ronald's lower back. "You'll feel better once we get home - but first, I believe ice cream is in order?"
“With chicken.” Ronald added with a nod, slumping over to lean against his lover’s side.
"Do you want to eat out, or pick some up for home? Either way, I have something I have to get today from a store" William said, wrapping his arm around his lover's side as he led him into town.
“Home. People can’t stop ogling me when we eat out… makes me feel like a whale or something.” He looked up at William, “Your place or mine, tonight?” The two had been living together since they talked things out, moving between both homes in fear that Hans would try attacking William again.
"Yours. Mine's a mess, remember?" William said, smirking at the blond as he recalled their bout of 'fun' the night before. "For someone carrying twins, you have a lot of vigor."
Ronald flushed, “Not my fault you started taking off clothes when I felt horny…” Shaking his head, he sighed, “I have to pick up my order of new maternity clothes, anyway. I ended up ordering some since I’m getting so big so fast, and I’m sure I’ll outgrow my mum’s old maturity stuff I found tucked away in the closet…”
William tutted, leaning over to pat his lover on the stomach. "You're glowing, adorable, and the sweetest man I know. Our children could not have a better mother." he said earnestly, capturing his lover's lips in a soothing kiss. "My pedigree Dormouse~" Removing himself from his lover, he tapped him teasingly on the nose. "No playtime in public though... I doubt the people in this area have forgotten about our late night romp in the park."
“That—That one was all you, Will! It’s like you have a ‘sex in the bushes’ fetish or something…”
The town was alive with life, winter having faded away to spring, and new life sprouting in the Realm of the Reapers. Shop owners opened up for new sales, new styles, and new beginnings. Children were let out of school, running past the couple in teasing attempt to ‘escape’ from their supervisor, the latter of whom bolted past, cursing up as storm as she rounded the children up to their quarters. William held Ronald's hand tightly as they strode down the pavement, pausing before a certain shop decorated with an array of cat and dog images.
"Wait out here" he said, letting go of his beloved. "I have a surprise for you. No peeking!"
“Wait… a surprise for me? Not Soul?” Ronald blushed a bright red, “If you come out here with a collar I’m going to hit you!”
William walked inside the store, leaving the blond outside. He was in there for fifteen minutes before returning, something cuddled up in his arms.
A very large, sleepy, sandy colored rabbit with a bow around her neck.
Ronald’s eyes widened and a child-like sparkle shown in them. A rabbit. He loved rabbits. And he couldn’t remember ever telling William such. Pushing himself off the bench he had sat on to rest his back, he hurried over to his lover, reaching out to stroke the rabbit’s ears, “You…You got me a rabbit?” he asked excitedly.
His lover nodded, beaming down at the blond as he cradled the animal comfortably in his arms.
"She's yours" he smiled. "A certain redhead told me that you had a love for rabbits... and he threatened to castrate me if I didn't make it up to you for my behavior..."
He cleared his throat, watching as the rabbit peered at Ronald with curious ringed green eyes. "She was once a therapy animal used for treating anxiety patients... But, she and her owners passed in a fire. The reaper at the scene accidentally turned her, and ended up leaving her at this store..." He gestured towards the building before them.
"They find that her fear left the moment she was turned... I suppose its because, being no longer mortal, she has no reason to fear death. Either way, she makes for a good house pet..."
The Flemish Giant sniffed at her new owner's hand, ears twitching slightly as she butted her nose against his palm.
Ronald smiled and leaned down to look at her as he stroked her fur, “Will she and Soul get along?” he asked, “Does she have a name?”
"I believe so - Soul saw her once and was fine, not to mention she's very docile and calm around other animals. As for a name, look on the tag: he gestured to a small tag sticking out from the bow.
Ronald took the tag in his hand and flipped it over, a smile curling his lips as he read it out loud, “Mary…Nice to meet you, Mary. I’m sure we’ll be good friends.” He kissed her nose lightly before grinning up at his lover, hugging him the best he could around the rabbit and his swollen belly. “Thank you, Will!”
William leaned over, planting a quick peck on his lover's lips.
"Come, my darling. Let us get our other essentials before darkness falls" he purred, rubbing at his lover's side gently. "We could pick up a heat pad for your back, if you wish..."
“Please!” Ron pressed, liking the idea, “The babies are killing me!”
The couple moved from store to store, grabbing what they needed; clothes, dinner, a few items for the rabbit, heating pad…and a few snack items Ronald grabbed to stash away in his desk at work, though he’d already broken into the bag and was munching on them as they walked back towards his house.
"Would you stop eating that? You're going to make yourself sick!" William scolded, attempting to snag the bag away. "You'll ruin your supper!"
He'd managed to retrieve Soul on their way back, the dog now trotting happily head of the two, enjoying the evening spring air. William still held onto the rabbit, the latter of which was lazily snoring away under his arm.
Coming up to the house, he attempted to take the food away from his lover once again.
Ronald managed to grab a handful of the sweet candies before the bag was no longer in hand, “I’ll not spoil dinner unless I’m the one to cook it! Nothing wrong with a few candies before dinner when I’m eating for three!”
"It is when you start throwing it back up after a couple of hours" William argued. "And eating for three is all the more reason to eat healthier." They reached the front door, the dark-haired Reaper waiting for the blond to fish out his keys.
“This—was so much easier just sneaking in the window…” Ron complained, juggling the load of bags in his arms as he fished for his keys, his own comment causing him to pause, a new mood sweeping over him. He’d fought so much with his parents before they died…usually after he was caught sneaking in late… He regretted it…every time he yelled at them…they only loved him and were worried…and now he’d never be able to say he was sorry…
William managed to get Soul to sit, the enthusiastic dog lolling her tongue at him. He shifted Mary in his arms, the rabbit still obviously asleep, turning around to see his lover standing still. He frowned, face softening at the pained and distant look on the boy's face.
"Ronald?" he asked worriedly.
“I…never got to say I was sorry…” he whispered, “I didn’t get to tell them I loved them and that I was sorry for fighting with them so much…they only wanted to help me…protect me…and I acted like a brat, yelling at them because we disagreed…”
William gently took the keys from his lover, unlocking the door and guiding the blond inside. Setting the bags down on the coffee table, letting Mary go free to explore (the rabbit snorted in disgruntlement at being woken up), William walked back over freehanded to help Ronald to the couch.
Ronald slumped over onto his side, both to relieve his back, and because he was feeling quite depressed, “I want my mum and dad back…”
William sat down beside him, carefully pulling his lover up into his arms. He knew Ronald was still in pain from loosing his parents, and it broke his heart that he couldn't do anything other than poorly attempt to soothe him.
So he sat there, gently rocking the boy in his lap, humming a soft tune under his breath. He ran his fingers through the blond hair, massaging his scalp, hoping to provide some relief.
"Do you want to talk about it?" he offered.
Ronald stubbornly shook his head, but started talking anyway, “I know I stressed Mum out so much! It’s horrible. He already had Thorns of Death, he didn’t need me making things worse! And I always fought the most with Papa…we clashed so much because I inherited his stubbornness. I even screamed at him that I hated him! I-I didn’t! I never hated him! I was just s-so mad that he wouldn’t let me do what I wanted…” he took in a shaky breath as he had started to sob, “They were always over protective of me…and I’d rebel against it! I hurt them because I wouldn’t let them protect me…when… when they have more reasons to than most parents…”
He looked up at William, meeting his eyes as he admitted something he had never admitted, even to himself, “B-because Mum had thorns…and had thorns when he was pregnant with me…there is a high chance I have it…and it is just sitting dormant within me right now… I could have my first attack at any time without warning, just as Mum was prone to such random attacks! They…are scary. Sometimes they get so bad they put mum in the hospital…I always worried Thorns would take mum from Dad and I… I never expected a demon to take him sooner! L-let alone take Father at the same time…”
William held his lover tighter, face paling at the mention of the dreadful disease feared by all Reapers alike. He suddenly felt like the world had iced over. The mere idea that Ronald, his Ronald, could contain the Thorns of Death frightened him; like a shadow looming over, it swept over him in a blanket of darkness. He did not want to loose his lover, not to this.
Was this how Eric felt about Alan? This constant fear?
Ronald frowned, the thought hitting him; “…If…I have Thorns…our babies may also…” he whispered hoarsely, dread dawning on him. He tightened his grip on his lover, now fully understanding why his own parents had been so protective of him.
William, if possible, gripped the blond tighter, mouth set in a worried line.
"W-We could get you check out... Make sure everything is alright..." he shuddered, not wanting to think of the worst. "Though... I believe I was told that the Thorns are not genetic..."
“The doctors told my parents its possible…as purebloods are so rare, and haven’t been born to a reaper with Thorns at all in known medical history.” He muttered, “I hope it isn’t but…it could be.
A sudden twitch occurred from inside the blond, pressing lightly against his stomach before relaxing again.
The twitch halted Ronald’s rather depressing train of thought, and he pulled away from his lover, looking down at his belly and placing a hand over it, silently waiting…soon after, it happened again, something pressing up against his hand. The blond’s eyes widened and he gave an excited squeak as he grabbed Will’s hand and brought it to his belly.
William gave him a curious look before he felt something move against his hand. His eyes widened, heart racing against his ribs as the babies began kicking for the very first time.
A sharp intake of breath and a small laugh escaped him, a joyful smile breaking out over his face, eyes flickering up to his lover.
Ronald smiled, “It…feels real now…not just like I’m fat.” He looked down at Will’s hand upon him, “We really are having children.”
William nodded, too happy for words alone. Watching his children move inside of their mother, he pulled Ronald in for a passionate kiss, his heart swelling with love for the blond.
"I love you, I love you so much, my Dormouse!"
Ronald grinned into the kiss, curling up with Will, in a much better mood, “I love you too, William!”
The dark-haired Reaper peppered kisses along the younger's jaw, hands trailing up and down his sides, tickling the soft skins beneath tapping fingertips. He purred deep in his throat, content and happy.
"Shall we break out the ice cream to celebrate? I'm afraid you gave me sympathy craving. Naughty, naughty!" he tapped the blond's cheek teasingly.
Though truthfully, he was glad his lover was in a better mood.
Ronald nodded, “It’s close to dinner as it is.”
William chuckled, lifting his lover off the couch, carrying him over to the kitchen.
"What does thy Highness require? We have many delicacies, including takeout chicken, Swiss chocolate, and cookies and cream ice cream~" he nuzzled the boy with a smile.
“All of the above!” Ronald grinned, petting Mary as she settled down next to his ankle.
William nodded, moving away to fix his lover a plate of chicken, a bowl of ice cream and start the fondue. Soul trotted into the room, taking a seat next to her master, staring up at him with pouting eyes.
The Reaper stared down at her with a stern look. "No" he scolded, causing the dog to loose interest and trot over to Ronald, leaning down to give Mary a friendly lick on the ear.
As he fixed dinner, William glanced out of the corner of his eye at the boy sitting at the table, watching him with a smile. Ronald had matured so much in the past couple of weeks, yet was still the same boy the man had fallen in love with.
He would make an amazing mother, even if he doubted himself too much.
Ronald took the heating pad and removed his shirt, hoping the pad would help his back. He leaned back, sighing as the pad got to work on his lower back. “When’s your next day off work?” he asked, breaking the comfortable science as he watched the dog and the rabbit get to know each other.
"Thursday, I believe..." William replied, bringing the food over to the table.
Setting the dishes down on the hardwood after two trips back and forth from the kitchen, he slunk over to the blond, kneeling before him to press a kiss to his bare stomach.
"Ronald...I was wondering if... no, nevermind" he sighed and rested his head on the bump, bangs falling in front of his eyes.
“Wondering what?” Ronald asked, already picking up his fork and cutting into the chicken, dipping it into the fondue and slipping it into his mouth happily.
William hesistated, "Well... I-I was wondering if we could visit Germany soon... April's birthday is coming up and... I want to visit her..." he mumbled, distracted tracing patterns over the blond's skin.
Ronald blinked, surprised the man would ask such a thing. It was something he had every right to do, “Of course. I mean, she’s your daughter…and the twins’ older sister…and not to mention that…” his cheeks flushed, “…the twins were conceived in Germany…”
William nodded silently, exhaling a small sigh as he cozied up against his lover.
"Thank you. It means a lot to me. I wish they could have met her - you would have loved, she was such a sweet little thing..."
“…I doubt she’d be ‘little’ anymore, though…she’d be older than me…” He said, running his fingers through his lover’s hair, “But…she is your family, just as Mum and dad are mine… we don’t forget them just because they are gone. Never ask if you ‘can go see’ her. Just let me know you plan to. If I can go visit the memorial stone for my parents, you can go see your daughter’s grave.”
William hummed softly, relishing the feel of soft fingers running through his heart. Ronald's words touched him deeply, leaving him at once again at a lose for his own.
"Who made you so sweet?" he purred, teasingly tickling the blond's side. "Sugary dormouse~"
“Not Father, at least.” Ronald blushed, “But it’s true.”
“Mmm, that I can understand... I've known Slingby since he was brought to the Dispatch. Always causing trouble and havoc, but a strong worker and loyal to his loved ones" William mused. "You mother was something else - quiet, polite, but strong-willed and sharp; put your father in his place pretty fast, but that may also be due to the fact that he was head over heels for Alan."
He stood, gently taking his lover's hand, "Feeling better? I was thinking we could share a bath to unwind for the night..." he trailed off, a suggestive look on his face.
Ronald flushed, “No promises on ‘play time’, but… if you draw up the bath while I finish eating…” he nodded. Baths were a welcome pastime for him. It helped his back and let him relax.
"Playtime? You instigate it half the time" William swiftly pecked his lover on the cheek, veering towards the bathroom before the blond could snap back.
Soul rested her chin on Ronald's knee, peering up at him with innocent eyes, begging for some table scraps. Mary simply snorted, watching the dog in amusement.
“No.” Ronald said firmly, inching away from the dog and continuing to eat. He’d gotten a lot better with dogs—well, with Soul—over the months he’d been living with William. “You know better than to beg. Also, this is chocolate. You can’t have any, even if you aren’t mortal anymore. You can still get sick from it, little missy!” he finished eating and got up, putting his dishes away in the sink before filling the dog’s bowl and stooping down to pet Mary as he also fed her, her dinner. Then he slowly moved up the steps and into the bathroom.
William had finished drawing the bath, and been on his way to retrieve Ronald when he caught sight of the blond clambering his way up the stairs.
"You should have waited for me!" he scolded lightly, offering his arm to the blond. "Are they still kicking?"
“I am perfectly capable of walking in my own house! I’m not so big I can’t move, you know.” Ron protested as he was guided into the bathroom and helped out of his remaining clothes and into the tub as getting in was difficult for him.
William removed his own clothing, slipping in behind his lover and wrapping his arms around him. The water was warm, but not too hot in case it hurt the babies. Leaning back, he let out a happy sigh, let the heat and steam steal away his troubles and fears.
Ronald smiled and relaxed against him, hands resting upon his belly under the surface of the warm, scented water. “I wish we could stay like this…” he said, letting his eyes slide closed as the heat began to seep into his body, easing his back.
William chuckled, reaching down underneath the water to rub soothing circles into the blond's back.
"Don't fall asleep on me" he teased, peck him on the lips.
The babies, woke up from the heat, began to move and kick again.
“I’m not tired…just…content.” He smiled, feeling the tiny feet kicking against the inside of his skin, “…this feels so…strange.”
"Just wait a couple of months and you'll be telling them to knock it off. I did, April always started up at the worst possible times, normally in class when everything was dead silent and I had to focus" William mused in amusement. "You reacted better than I did - I thought my organs were falling out and panicked. The doctor thought I was an idiot."
“I’m not in classes. Just home and work. And I doubt you’d mind if you got interrupted because the twins started kicking.” He shrugged, kissing Will’s neck. “And if you do, I shall remind you whose fault it is!”
"Oh, trust me, you will once they start waking up in the middle of the night. They're going to get stronger from here on out." William replied, massaging Ronald's scalp with gentle fingers. "We'll have to be prepared for anything."
“Again, your fault, mister ‘I’m going to go get my boyfriend pregnant with twins the first time we make love’.” He smirked.
"I do beg your pardon, Mr. I-want-to-shag-my-boss-in-the-company's-lift!" he turned the smirk, a playful fire burning in his eyes. "Although, I will say better you than me!" He ducked as he felt the soap bar was chucked at his head.