|The Naming of Names
Author: Bad Faery PM
Belle cares how he looks.Rated: Fiction T - English - Angst/Romance - Dr. N. Rush & Belle - Chapters: 6 - Words: 2,205 - Reviews: 33 - Favs: 21 - Follows: 17 - Updated: 07-02-12 - Published: 06-18-12 - Status: Complete - id: 8232422
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
He worries when he breaks his glasses. He's functional without them, if more prone to headaches, but Belle likes him with his glasses on. If she's around, he wears them even if he doesn't need them, and she traces her finger lightly over the frames or pushes them up to kiss the red spots they leave on the bridge of his nose.
She sticks close to him now, more than she ever did before. She prods him to tell her about what he's doing, and he's happy to comply. It's nice to have someone who listens without judging or telling him that he's going about things the wrong way. It's nicer to have her close.
She cradles his stubbled jaw when they kiss, plays with the edge of his waistcoat when she snuggles close to him, and always calls him Nick. There are still moments he catches her looking at him, barely breathing, and she'll excuse herself only to return minutes or hours later with a smile for him that doesn't quite reach her eyes, but those moments are becoming less frequent by the week.
Before she looked for ways that he and her husband were the same; now she concentrates on how they're different. The glasses help, but now they're broken, the frames too mangled for him to bother with fixing right now when there's so much else that needs to be done. This can't be his priority, no matter how afraid he is to face her without them. She needs the help, and he needs her to see him.
She walks in as he's cursing over them, her hand resting on his shoulder as she leans around him to see what he's doing. "What happened, sweetheart?" she murmurs, and he freezes.
Sweetheart. Not Nick or Rush or love or Rum or anything else she's ever called him. This is an endearment that belongs to him alone. An endearment, he realizes as he looks into her worried eyes, that she means.
"Broke the damn things again," he mutters. He's searching her face for any sign of the sadness he sees too often or the pity he's constantly afraid he'll see. Instead, he's greeted with concern and affection.
Belle makes a sympathetic noise and brushes a quick kiss against his lips. "You'll have to take more breaks," she cautions, "You know you get headaches without them."
He nods dumbly, and she kisses him again before retrieving her notebook and setting to work translating the most recent Ancient writings they found. He has a thousand things to do- a thousand and one now that his glasses are broken. Instead he moves to sit at her feet, resting his head against her knee.
Belle makes an inquisitive noise, not looking away from her work as she moves to stroke his hair. "You okay, sweetheart?"
He needs a pet name for her, something like princess or angel or treasure, something that will tell her how much she means to him without him actually having to say it. Maybe it's not love for her, not yet, but he's sweetheart even when she's distracted, and that's more than he ever expected to have.
He kisses her leg through her jeans and sighs. "I am now."