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Rated T for general angst and a bit of fluff.
Written for Day One of the Harper/Tyr Advent Calendar.
The day had been a long one for the crew of the Andromeda, and with the exception of Harper, they were all asleep in their beds sleeping the sleep of the just. Harper was fingering the flute that Dylan had given him earlier that evening once he and Rommie got back from their failed rebellion on Earth. He watched the stars fly past the window from his seat on the floor leaning back against a nearby bench.
During the many hours Harper sat brooding he had come to a rather startling realization. The crew, his friends, didn't need him, or even particularly respect him. They always expected his feats of engineering genius, but even they were often overlooked or ignored altogether. They needed their engineer of course, what with the number of battles they've fought, but Seamus Harper was unnecessary. Had it been anyone else that Dylan gave his word to, he would have moved heaven and earth to accomplish it. In fact Harper had seen Dylan do just that for strangers, when it promised to further his commonwealth.
The truth of the matter was that Harper was the only one who cared about Earth at all. To the rest of the known worlds it was just a slave and breeding planet for the Magog and Nietzscheans. All of Dylan's philosophizing couldn't change the fact that he had abandoned them to be slaughtered, and hence so had Harper by default. His cousin Brendan would be lucky to die this night. As a leader of the resistance he could expect a long torturous existence if captured alive. The last of his family was dead, or would be soon enough. As he replayed the last hours of his time on Earth he vaguely remembered seeing a few decorations scattered in the tunnels. After a few moments Harpers shoulders slumped down even further and he dropped his head into his hands in despair. Between his fingers he spoke. His voice soft and broken.
"What is the current date in Earth Standard?"
"December twenty-fourth according to the lunar calendar ."
"Is there a significance to this date Master Harper?"
Harper jumped to his feet and crouched into a fighting stance with grace unseen before then. His hand went to his belt, presumably looking for a weapon but only found air. Tyr raised an eyebrow at the Little Professor's rather unexpected reaction. He had never expected Harper to react in such a way. When Harper noticed who it was that was intruding his teeth pulled back in a fierce snarl before he could temper his anger.
"I am in an isolated part of the ship for a reason, Tyr." Harper ground out through clenched teeth, keeping a tight reign on his actions. He didn't trust himself at the moment not to take a swing at the Nietzschean just because he happened to be closest, and knew that nothing good would come of it.
Tyr ignored the veiled request for solitude and stalked into the room, the doors swishing shut behind him.
"Moping will not change the reality in which you find yourself." Tyr commented calmly, as he moved closer to the blond engineer. "Accept events and move on."
"And how long did it take you to accept the slaughter of Kodiak Pride and to move on?" Harper snarled furiously. How dare the Uber demean his grief. "More then a few hours I'll bet."
"You're people are still alive, as is your cousin as far as you are aware. My pride is gone, our home world nothing but a cloud of dust."
"My people are being slaughtered by Ubers thanks to Dylan Hunt and my cousin is most-likely dead or wishing he was. Brendan was the last of my family, MY pride, who you and Rommie forced me to leave to die. How exactly would you like me to behave?"
"Grieve." Tyr answered slowly, as if considering his answer carefully. "Then continue living because that is how to honor your dead. Not this half-life you have sunk into since our return. Had the ship been attacked while you brood all of our survival would be compromised."
"You're all heart, Big Guy." Harper told him sarcastically, flopping back down to his spot on the floor, which Tyr takes as an invitation to sit as well. The Nietzschean sits on the bench where Harper rests, sitting close to his shoulder. Tyr's leather clad leg leans lightly against the blond from shoulder to hips causing warmth to spread where their bodies touch. Harper resists the urge lean his weight against Tyr and holds himself rigidly. He definitely doesn't rest his head on Tyr's thigh, nor does he nuzzle the hand trapped under his cheek, although he would have liked to.
"You never did answer my question." Tyr commented into the stillness when they had both quietly watched the view for a few minutes in peace.
"It's Christmas Eve." Harper answered softly, still looking out the window. "The holiday was originally based on an old Earth religion but as time passed the day became more of a symbol amongst my people, and a reminder. It is celebrated with family and you eat and give gifts. It's basically a time of celebration, not something that happens often in Boston. I haven't celebrated Christmas in over five years, since after I left Earth, but I just realized that I don't have anyone to celebrate it with even if I wanted to. All my family is gone."
Tyr didn't respond verbally, but he did move closer and squeezed Harper's shoulder gently. They sat in silence for the next hour. Neither spoke, but Tyr lifted his mood slightly just by staying with him. At least he was no longer alone. Harper was exhausted both physically and emotionally, so it was no surprise that he fell asleep with nothing to keep him occupied. His head fell against Tyr's thigh and the Nietzsche an ran his finger gently through Harper's blond hair.
"Happy Christmas, Little Professor." Tyr whispered into his ear, kissing his lobe softly before scooping the smaller man up into his arms, careful not to wake him.
Harper woke the next morning to unfamiliar surroundings. He was sleeping somewhere soft, a far cry from the hard floor of Obs deck, and he was pinned down snuggly. Upon opening his eyes he saw was Tyr's face relaxed in sleep, about an inch from his own. Harper's first instinct was to jump out of bed and leave before Tyr woke up, but he quickly decided he was too comfortable to bother moving. He was warm, safe, and for the first time in a long while he was no longer alone.