Pt. 2: Why Not? (AU continuation to the first part)
Contains non-explicit slash (meaning: male same-sex relationships), if you don't like it then don't read, if you'd still choose to read then don't complain in reviews about it. You've been warned
Summary: Steffan gives up on his lover and is letting go of everything
Disclaimer: See pt. 1
He awoke to stare into the fireplace where the flames had been dancing as sleep had taken him away, but they had died down since then. He sat up, and felt a dull pain when straightening his back and his neck wasn't late to join in complaint.
Sighing he leant forward in the armchair and buried his face in his hands, to look up when he heard the sound of Anton turning in the bed. He looked round the back of the armchair and saw the outlines of the man and contemplated whether he should go back to the bed or… Or what?
Groaning softly as the stiff joints in his knees creaked, Steffan walked slowly back to bed. The quilt was still thrown back, just as he left it. He lied down and felt an arm close around him, in his sleep Anton had felt the slight shift in the mattress and moved to put his arm around him.
Normally Steffan would have felt pleased with the show of affection, but all he could think of was who that arm had been around earlier that night. Shuddering he crept out of the embrace and gazed out at the rising sun through the window, reflecting over its beauty.
Time passed by and the sun rose higher on the sky, and with that the morning came. He felt the other move behind him, but did not do anything to acknowledge it, instead he closed his eyes and pretended to be deep asleep.
"You're awake?" he heard Anton's voice say, Steffan didn't reply but stayed still. The mattress shifted as his lover moved over to him and Steffan could feel his warm breath on his cheek. In his mind, he could see Anton's face hovering over his own, those soft lips only an inch from touching his cheek, and he had to do his outmost not to turn around and face him. "Steffan?"
A hand reached to touch his cheek, and the struggle started anew but he kept still and his eyes closed. Lips came down to press soft kisses along the jaw and he was on the verge of giving in, when an image appeared before his mind's eye. He'd seen Anton kiss another man, who looked very much like Steffan, in the same fashion, and disturbed by the image he moved away making it look like in his sleep.
Anton watched him for a moment before he crawled out of bed and headed for the bathroom, from which the sound of running water was soon heard.
He waited till the pouring of the water ceased and Anton returned from the bathroom till he opened his eyes. He looked at the man, who he had thought to be the love of his life, followed his every move as he got dressed. Bit by bit covering up the body that for a blissful while had been his and only his to enjoy.
He sighed and shut his eyes again, just in time for Anton to miss it as he turned to behold his still, seemingly, sleeping lover. Steffan heard steps approaching in his direction though they soon faltered and there was no sound, till the footfall was heard again – but this time in the direction of the door.
After that the door had closed behind Anton, Steffan remained in the bed his eyes shut taking in the silence that surrounded him before he sat up running a hand through long hair.
He made his way to the bathroom and stood in the shower for a long time unthinking and unfeeling, just him and the water.
He'd been observing them for a while, seeing how he looked at the young attractive man – the hunger in his eyes that seemed to excite the other. He watched as Anton leant closer to say something and felt his heart break at the look the man gave Anton in return.
He tore his eyes away and quenched a quiet sob. For how long would this be going on?
He turned and left the great hall in which he'd been standing half hidden behind a pillar, nobody giving him a second look. Before he left through the double doors he looked over his shoulder, hoping beyond hope that he would be met by a different sight than the one he was met by. His lover and the young admirer were locked in a passionate kiss.
A silent tear rolling down his cheek he slowly walked away, head bent.
He moved over the grounds of the island, to the cliffs where the wind caught his unbound hair and blew it around him and into his face as he stood staring out over the sea where great waves came in toward land to break against the cliffs in cascades of white foam.
He looked down at the foamy water beneath him and slowly went to stand on the very edge of the rock. Tears were trickling down his beautiful face, not because he was afraid of what was to come, but because he had nothing left - he'd lost the only thing he'd ever wanted; Anton's affection.
Looking down at the water, his thoughts went to the predatory fishes that were known to live there, and a faint sad smile came to his face. Most people avoided them, they weren't good for eating and very hard to kill, but for this occasion they would be most useful.
Unless your lovely body parts are scattered to the four winds…
He took a step forward and closed his eyes as he felt himself falling, the wind cradling him but doing nothing to slow his descent, down toward the water and the rocks beneath.
His last conscious thought was:
I'm not enough for you any more… Why not?
He watched as Steffan approached the cliff's edge and frowned. What was he up to?
Anton had to admit to himself that there was something strangely alluring about seeing the young man standing there, the pale white hair in sharp contrast to the dark background, but he couldn't shake the feeling that something was wrong.
He called out Steffan's name, but his voice was caught by the wind blowing against him and went unheard. He began to walk over to join the other, but barely had he taken three steps when Steffan suddenly took a step right out into the nothingness beyond the solid ground of the rock.
Not believing what he'd just seen, he gasped and hurried over to look after the falling man. It was then he heard the faint whisper in the wind:
"I love you, Anton"