Nightmares [Elijah]

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Nightmares [Elijah]

Post by Jack Emmanual-Wheelan on Sat Feb 13, 2016 3:46 pm

Jack jolted awake, drenched in a cold sweat.  Breathing heavily, he stared at the window, focusing on the tiny bit of light streaming through.  He had kept himself clean for a few months now, but the nightmares still haunted many of his sleeping moments.  Ever so slowly, the son of Venus turned his head to the left to check on his fiancé.  He was terrified that the younger man wouldn’t be there.  That had been the worst part of his nightmares before returning to camp.  Waking up to find an empty bed without comfort was as harsh as the dreams themselves.  This time, however, the bed was not empty.  Elijah lay curled up on his side on the opposite edge of the bed, his back to his fiancé.  Soft snores reminded Jack that the son of Discordia was suffering from a cold and hadn’t been feeling well lately.  Not wanting to disturb his sleep any more, Jack silently threw back the damp blankets and rolled from the bed.  As quietly as he could, he padded over to the window to stare at the landscape beyond the Principia.  The full moon illuminated a large portion of the grounds, but the presence of the buildings still threw shadows everywhere.  Though the remnants of the nightmares were fading, those shadows still agitated the son of Venus.  Who knew what could jump out of them?

Turning from the window, Jack quickly crossed the room to get to the bathroom.  He flipped on the light, chasing away all the shadows, before stepping in and closing the door behind himself.  Now that he was out from under the blankets, the lingering sweat was starting to freeze on his bare chest.  He fought back a shiver as he reached for a towel to dry himself off.  He moved slowly, taking care to use the feel of the towel on his skin to ground himself back in the present.  He was at camp.  He was safe.  Elijah was right on the other side of the door.  Nobody was coming to get him.  Nobody was leaving him.  Nobody had died a gory death, and he certainly hadn’t murdered anybody in a bloody mess.  All was normal…safe…calm…

With a deep breath, Jack finally turned to face the mirror.  He took a step closer to the counter, eyes scanning and studying his reflection.  Gods, he was pale.  His skin was coming close to resembling his fiancé’s.  His beard was starting to look a little scruffy and in desperate need of a shave.  His grey eyes were dull but scared.  They held the look of a frightened rabbit.  It was a look that was unfamiliar, unrecognizable to the son of Venus.  He quickly averted his gaze, unable to stand the sight.  His eyes landed on the scar beside his nose.  With gentle fingers, he reached up to feel the marred skin.  It was rough beneath his fingertips, but it was familiar.  It was a part of him.  With a sigh, he lowered his arm and rested both hands on the countertop.  So much had changed just from his short time in the city.  He regretted it now.  He had hurt himself and he had hurt Elijah.  The fact that they were still together spoke volumes about the son of Discordia, but none about the son of Venus.  Jack stared down at his hands, wishing he could take all of it back.

((Author's Note: Background info coming soon.))
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Re: Nightmares [Elijah]

Post by Elijah Emmanual-Wheelan on Sat Feb 13, 2016 7:29 pm

Elijah awoke to something being just a tiny bit off...something that he was even more sensitive to these days than ever before.  Which was certainly saying something, as over the past few years sharing his bed with Jack most nights, the small boy had been through some major adjustments.  He could remember when his fiancé started spending nights with him...having someone else in bed with him for the first time in his life.  And how it had become natural, to the point where sleeping without the older man was near impossible.  And then when Jack had left for New York City a few months ago, the emptiness of the bed that the son of Discordia had experienced...how terrible it was, how every night he just wanted the other back.  Jack was back...at a terrible price.  And now, every time Elijah found himself awake in the middle of the night, he felt the same jolting pain that had plagued him for so many months now.

Now when he woke up, Elijah had to remind himself it wasn't like that.  But he still had nightmares...waking up, gasping for breath and remembering the night he got that phone call...the dizzy haze of calling a cab and rushing to the city, the hospital, Jack laying unconscious on the hospital bed.  It terrified the boy so much...even though the son of Venus had gone through rehab for the alcohol problem after his near death experience with alcohol poisoning, it haunted Elijah.  His fiancé had been back for over a month now...but Gods, it still wasn't going away.  Well, it was getting better, but it definitely wasn't all the way there.  So when the boy woke up in the middle of the night and something seemed off, his mind tended to jump right to the worst.  It brought him back to those months without his fiancé, waking up alone in bed.  And that night...that night all over again.

So when he woke up that night with a snort, Elijah wasn't sure what it was at first.  He had been dealing with a nasty head cold, which felt like it was only getting worse and worse, and thought maybe that was it.  But then he noticed Jack wasn't in bed with him, and the panic started rising in his chest.  As a general chain reactive moment, the stress brought up the cough the boy had been trying to keep down, and for a moment, all that mattered was clearing out his throat.  But as quickly as that passed, Elijah looked around wildly, trying to figure out where Jack had gone.  These times had happened...even with rehab and all of it, the other was still struggling.  The son of Discordia would do anything to take it away from Jack.

"Jack?" Elijah called softly when his cough cleared up.  He could see the bathroom light was on, and blearily rose from bed to pad over softly.  "What's going on, love?"

Since Jack had gotten back to camp, Elijah had noticed some big changes in his fiancé.  The biggest one was the fragility the older man now exhibited.  It was sort of scary, as Elijah had always been the fragile one.  But right now, Jack needed the Praetor to be his rock.  It was something that the boy was getting more and more used to...because the older man meant everything to him, and it was definitely a healing process...this was something that the boy was well aware of, no matter how scary things got.  In all fairness, things were getting better and better every day.  They were still a long way out, but Jack was so strong...something that Elijah was constantly reminding him of.  Neither of them would be able to do it without each other...which was something they had learned in multiple ways since Jack had originally left camp.  They were back together, and they were making it.  Walking towards the bathroom, Elijah found his fiancé standing in front of the mirror.  He looked scared and lost, and it pieced Elijah's heart painfully.  "Come back to bed, love," he said softly, wrapping his arms around the taller man from behind and resting his cheek on his back.  "Or...is there anything I can do?" he added hesitantly.  Things were constantly in flux...and Elijah wanted to be sure he got it right every time.

_________________



Thank you to all the Hillywood voters...so, so honored! <3
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Characters:
Elijah Emmanual-Wheelan & Devin Casales & Izzy Abney
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Elijah speaks in #78c7c7
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Re: Nightmares [Elijah]

Post by Jack Emmanual-Wheelan on Sat Apr 16, 2016 8:46 pm

As Jack stared at his hands, he wished with everything he had that he could take back all the mistakes, all the alcohol, all the pain.  But as he thought it, he realized he felt…nothing.  He could wish for anything with all of his might, but that didn’t mean there was any emotion behind it.  One moment, the son of Venus would feel deep regret for his past actions.  The next, there would be nothing.  He could hold a strong need to change, but suddenly realize change was inevitable regardless of feelings.  Worst of all were the days that his familiar, unending, burning love for Elijah dulled into a sense of consistency and flat domestication.  The lack of emotion had been happening more and more often since he had taken his vow of sobriety.  In his mind, Jack knew it should hurt or scare him, but he felt absolutely nothing.  His brain raced with thoughts, but there was nothing attaching them to him.  It was almost like watching a total stranger in a coffee shop.  The son of Venus could see their actions.  He could see their life played out before him, but there was no attachment to the stranger.  But then again, it was worse.  Even watching a stranger, emotions came into play.  Annoyance when they didn’t know their order before reaching the counter.  An unspoken connection when they asked for his favorite coffee.  Disappointment when they got the last blueberry muffin.  With himself, there was absolutely nothing.

Jack had secretly confided in River a week ago.  Though the two were still on very rocky terrain, the son of Venus needed to tell somebody about it.  He certainly couldn’t tell Elijah.  The younger man already had enough to deal with since Jack had nearly destroyed their relationship.  He wasn’t about to dump his cold, heartless problems on the man in addition to everything else.  Despite their relationship, River was the only other person Jack trusted.  Thankfully, she had listened to him carefully, and for the first time in a long time, she had refrained from judging.  Her thoughts on the matter, however, did little to ease the son of Venus’s mind.  Though a lot of new memories were fuzzy for the young man, he remembered the conversation quite clearly.  “I think your mind is overloaded,” she had said.  “You’ve relied on alcohol for so long.  Dulling your mind, dulling your body…basically putting yourself into a constant haze.  Now that you’re out, your mind doesn’t really know what to do with it.  Does everything look sharper?  Thinking clearer?  Emotions clearer?  Yeah, it’s a lot for your body to handle right now.  It doesn’t know what to do, so it’s shutting down the less necessary parts.”  Jack didn’t think emotions were any less necessary than thoughts.  In fact, he would have preferred to think less and feel more, but he understood why River thought that.  She was a different person.  Always cool and level-headed.  A logical thinker.  Given what she did with the powers from her mother, it was no wonder she left emotions as secondary to thoughts.

Elijah’s hacking cough reached Jack’s ears, and he realized he should bring the younger man a glass of water.  Despite the thought, he found he couldn’t move from his position against the counter.  Or rather…because of it, he couldn’t move.  The thought had crossed his mind, but it was accompanied incorrectly.  The sequence followed that he should bring Elijah a glass of water because he was coughing and needed to clear his throat.  Jack knew the proper sequence was that he should bring Elijah a glass of water because he loved his fiancé, his fiancé was sick, and Jack wanted to care for him.  The fact that he was suddenly so emotionally disconnected when he had been terrified for his life a minute ago nearly broke the son of Venus.  It didn’t make sense to him, and he hated that there were moments of utter ambivalence toward the man who was the love of his life.  He didn’t understand how he could think everything and feel nothing all at once.

Looking at his hands, he didn’t register the movement out of the corner of his eye.  He didn’t register anything until he felt Elijah’s arms around his waist and heard his gentle words.  “Come back to bed, love.”  The combination of the sensations and the sounds were enough to jolt the son of Venus, but not in the way he had hoped.  His breath caught in his throat, and he held it a moment, not wanting his fiancé to see what was happening.  He swallowed hard, but it wasn’t enough to keep the tears from escaping his eyes and rolling down his cheeks.  Jack tried his best to discretely lift and arm and wipe them away before Elijah could see.  How was it possible to love someone so deeply, but not to feel it?  How could he let that happen to himself?  He swallowed a few more times as the son of Discordia asked what he could do to help.  He shook his head ever so slightly, barely trusting his own voice.  “I’m fine,” he whispered.  “Just nightmares again.  It’s nothing I can’t handle.  Go back to bed, babe.  I’ll be there in a little bit.”  Jack hated pushing the younger man away, but he couldn’t bear to let Elijah see him cry.
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Re: Nightmares [Elijah]

Post by Elijah Emmanual-Wheelan on Thu Apr 21, 2016 6:30 pm

It killed Elijah that Jack was going through such hell.  What he wouldn't do to make it all better in an instance.  Things had happened...and everything had taken major blows.  Including the two's relationship.  Though that was something the boy would only get worried over in his head.  They both knew it, but the son of Discordia couldn't say it out loud.  He just had to keep the faith...his fiancé would get back to normal in due time, and the two could fix the issues.  Together.  Right now, though, Elijah had to just keep Jack up and running.  Functioning...living...Gods.  In some ways, the boy knew that burden wasn't completely on him.  On the other hand, who else was there?  It was all...a lot.  "Jack..." Elijah mumbled, still rubbing the sleepiness from his eyes.  Jack needed him.  Sometimes he couldn't help but wonder if Jack needed him as much as Elijah thought he did.  How much of it was in his head?

As much as Elijah wanted to play the hero, he knew that wasn't really what Jack needed.  Especially in those times where the older man got so...distant.  And those moments happened a lot.  Sometimes it terrified the small man to no ends.  He knew he shouldn't worry...but the nightmares.  Even the waking ones, which plagued the boy just as bad at times.  Those were the ones where Jack said he didn't want to be with Elijah anymore.  "It would never happen," the boy whispered to himself as he pulled himself out of bed.  Things were just...a bit different for the time being.  Sooner or later, everything would shift back to some sort of normal state.  Would things ever be exactly like they had been before?  Probably not.  But Elijah liked to think that they'd be better.  Couples didn't just go through this sort of thing without coming up on top.  Well, couples like Jack and Elijah, anyway.  Because no matter what was going on, the two loved each other.  That was how it always had been, and how it would always be.

The pain ached sharply in Elijah's chest when he saw Jack before him.  He couldn't help it.  In a brief, but overwhelming moment, the boy thought about all the times the other had come to his rescue.  All the times he had driven away the demons, or just held the younger man when he cried.  He thought about the time shortly before their first anniversary that they had been "broken up"...how hopeless things had felt in that month, and the ecstasy of their reunion.  Maybe it was a bit like that, as the son of Discordia tried to process all the thoughts and emotions that had hit him.  Things hadn't gone right back to normal after that, but the two had succeeded...and ended up in an even better place than before.  "You're not fine, Jack," Elijah said dully.  He may have been half asleep and sick, but he hadn't missed his fiancé's attempt to covertly wipe away his tears.  "The nightmares won't just go away if you try to fight them like this..." he couldn't do it alone...but Elijah knew Jack wouldn't necessarily want to hear that.  In some ways, the son of Venus was trying to look out for his fiancé, just as Elijah was trying to look out for him.  But...Jack needed it more.  Elijah would fight that one stubbornly.

"You can't handle it alone," Elijah whispered, holding the taller man tighter.  "Please don't push me away, Jack," the boy coughed, unsure if it was his cold or emotions choking him so badly.  Maybe a little of both.  It was something to fight through, he figured...something else.  Of course, Jack didn't need to know just how much the small man was fighting through.  Jack needed him.  Jack needed him.  Tomorrow, Elijah could go track down River and use her for his support...but right now, Jack was the one in need.  And the son of Discordia wasn't going down without a fight.  He would do everything he possibly could to drill through Jack's thick skull.  "I'm not leaving you alone right now.  I don't care what..."

A heartbeat.  Did Elijah let Jack know he knew he was crying?  In some ways, it was such a deeply personal thing.  In other ways...well, the two were engaged.  If they couldn't allow each other to see each others' weak moments, and accept that was all a part of being together, forever was going to get a little tricky.  "You can cry in front of me," Elijah finally said softly.  "I'm not letting you do this alone..." the boy coughed, feeling another fit rising in his throat.  "Stop trying to hide it.  I know things are..." are what?  There were so many ways to finish that sentence.  Instead, the boy just tightened his hold.  Jack would know...because he always did.

_________________



Thank you to all the Hillywood voters...so, so honored! <3
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Characters:
Elijah Emmanual-Wheelan & Devin Casales & Izzy Abney
-----------------------------------------
Elijah speaks in #78c7c7
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