ninemoons42 writes: at the end of the [long, loved] day
[for friends and fellow fans]
There are days on which he feels like he has never really known a quiet day in his life - not since the distant morning when he woke up from fever-dreams and a crushing headache to realize that the voices in his head were real, and that they belonged to the people who shared the house with him, and that men and women were capable of both great congruence and fatal dissonance in the words that came out of their mouths and the thoughts that spun in their heads on gossamer threads of meaning and intent; not since he first reached out to people who had abilities; not since he met people who shared the terrible weight of his knowledge and of the way he could read people’s deepest memories - and certainly not since that strange day so many years ago when he plunged into the mind of a man who only needed to reach out to command more than just metal, more than just the orbit of the Earth, more than just sight and physics and gravity itself.
The years have been long and strange, Charles thinks, as he resettles himself in his armchair, and when he looks out the window of his office he knows that he can see the spectacular late-autumn landscapes of Westchester, but that he can see something else beyond those hills and those familiar slopes: he can see the world that is still building itself steadily out there, on a foundation of handshake and agreement and argument and the march of time; he can see people walking a thousand paths leading in a thousand directions and yet all still working toward shared goals, shared dreams - he closes his eyes and he can still see, even without Cerebro’s aid, the thousands of twinkling lights, every one a mind that he knows, every one a mind that knows him - knows him and Erik both.
Speaking of which, he really must be getting up soon, because he can hear Erik’s thoughts about dinner and privacy and candles set up on the corner of the eastern porch that they have long since claimed for their own: they used to sit out there in any weather, and have it all out there, huge screaming fights and near-silent reconciliations and endless games of chess and some really magnificent long nights of nothing but love and passion and inexhaustible desire - now, they’ve had to concede somewhat to their physical shells, and to have protective walls built around the table and the chairs and the immense and still comfortable loveseat that never seemed large enough for both of them but almost always seemed to be a good place to hold on to each other, especially on the nights when they had nothing else but faith and the enduring wisp of shared warmth to go on with.
He’s still thinking of Erik when he slips under: a moment of silence, a moment of being not-alone, because even during the long torn years of wartime and separation he’d never truly been able to extricate himself from Erik, nor had he ever wanted to - a beautiful mind, a heart that would struggle for every inch and every moment of its existence and be exultingly alive with every success so he was, and is, always a beacon, someone for Charles to point towards: because there have been countless letters in which Erik has named Charles the star that he steered by and there have been countless thoughts in which Charles has always found himself pointing back to Erik, again and again, over the long years, from the first meeting and in every day since.
When he wakes up, it’s not because of a familiar warmth in his mind, and it’s not because of a familiar hand worn and rough around his - he wakes up because it’s Erik, because it’s all of him, the lines in his face and the knowing light in his gray eyes and the familiar lopsided smile, and Charles goes, willingly, knowing that he must care about how carefully Erik has supervised the cooking and the table and the stray autumn rose still blooming in the white vase between their plates, pure pale cream petals - but knowing that he still cares even more about who Erik is beneath the severe shirts and the warm coat, about that mind and that body and the hands that are still leading him, that he clings to, and that cling back to him.
Oh that’s beautiful. *sighs*