hark, for here is heaven
"It's too stuffy in here," Violet says idly one day, standing in the center of the living room, hands on her hips. "We should make it…brighter. You know, more homey. There's so much darkness and it's all drab. No wonder everyone stays down in the basement. It's depressing. Maybe it'd be more like a home if it was…lively."
Tate smirks, reclining back on the tan couch, hands behind his head. He's in one of his smartass moods. "We're not exactly the liveliest bunch, Vi." he reminds her, tilting his chin.
Violet glares at him before turning her dead gaze to the wood panels lining the walls. She points to them, "Those'll be the first to go." she says, and Tate raises an eyebrow.
"Oh? How're you gonna manage that?" he asks, sitting up as she saunters over to him. She climbs into his lap, his hands immediately sliding up the sides of her thighs. She taps her chin thoughtfully, pursing her lips. Tate watches her in amusement, tracing shapes on her legs. She's always been kind of a quirky ghost, ever since she discovered all the perks and all of the other people living here. She likes floating around and discussing the 1900's with Nora.
"Well, my big strong ghost boyfriend has a toolbox around here somewhere." she finally says, lips tilting into a little smile.
"Flattery will get you nowhere." Tate says, sliding his hands further up her dress.
She swats his hands away, "If you wanna get any further up my dress, then you'll do as I say." she says, standing up and going back to the wall, shooting off a list of colors.
Tate pouts for a moment, but catches the look of pure enjoyment on her face. He hasn't seen that look in awhile. Sure, she likes being a ghost, but he knows she kind of misses humanity. She misses her mom and her dad and living. So, if painting the Murder House funky colors makes her happy, he supposes he's going to have to go get some paint.
(They paint the walls every color of purple Tate can find, and she squeals, so unlike her usual self, when he trails a streak of violet paint across her cheek. Thus begins the most epic purple paint battle that there ever was.)
The next day, when the paint's dry, they're sitting in the living room, and Hayden passes through, glancing at the pair on the floor. They're playing some kind of card game and she wants to roll her eyes because Jesus, they're so boring. Then she catches sight of the walls. The old wood boards are gone, replaced with four different shades of purple, one on each wall. "Huh." she murmurs, tilting her head. She remembers purple being her favorite color.
Violet glances up at her, and they have a kind of mutual stare down. They've never been friends, what with Hayden's bad attraction to her boyfriend, but what Hayden sees there isn't hate, or even anger, it's peace. "Hey," she says, and Tate looks over his shoulder at her, "you should to the rest of the house. Mine and Nora's room is looking a bit shabby."
Tate turns around, hiding his smile in his hand of cards. Violet beams, giving Tate a gleeful look.
(They paint Nora and Hayden's room a bright blue, even the ceiling and Violet goes through after all of the paint has dried and stencils clouds on the ceiling. Later, when they walk by, they see Nora and Hayden on the same bed, staring up at the ceiling, pointing at the clouds. Violet smiles, (so much unlike the girl he'd known years ago that it's scary), slipping her hand in Tate's and dragging him down the hallway.)
Constance lounges in the kitchen a few days later, having her weekly cup of coffee with Violet and a reluctant Moira. "The place looks fabulous," she says to Violet, taking a sip of her bourbon laced coffee.
Violet accepts the compliment graciously, taking the cigarette Constance hands her. She lights it, taking a drag and letting the smoke curl from her mouth and into the air. "Tate helped a lot." she says, flicking the ash from her cigarette into her empty coffee cup.
Constance sets her drink aside, lighting her own cigarette. "How is he?" she asks quietly.
Violet takes another drag before answering, "He's as well as he can be. He still doesn't want to talk to you, but he doesn't look like he wants to dig my body up and bury me somewhere else when I mention your name anymore."
Constance tucks a strand of hair behind her ear, flicking ash from her cigarette, "You should do something about this kitchen," she murmurs.
(Later, when they're painting the kitchen yellow and orange, Constance pops in, taking a seat at the island and wistfully watching her son paint the walls with a concentration she's probably never seen from him. He just wants things to be perfect for Violet. She tells him he missed a spot, and he doesn't even blink before he's going over the spot with a paintbrush and stiffly thanking her. Constance beams and Violet thinks her plan is going along swimmingly.)
There's already a change in the house.
The ghosts are coming out more, to watch TV in the living room, to congregate in the kitchen and catch up, to settle into the rooms that had been delegated to them.
Violet walks around in a permanent haze of cheerfulness and everyone notices. She bounces around and follows Moira as she cleans, shows Nora the wonders of the worldwide web, and takes Bo outside to play with his ball.
Tate thinks this might have been her plan after all.
The house is now an array of colors; purple, yellow, orange, red, blue.
He paints his and Violet's room a light green color, and the rest of the rooms get painted shortly after that. There's not a dark corner in the house. The blinds are always open and the doors are never closed.
It feels more like a home now than when Violet was actually living here.
"Tate," she murmurs one night when they're lying in bed. He's on his stomach, lazily braiding a few strands of her hair together. He looks up, light rolling off of the bright walls and bouncing off of his bare back. "I think we should dig up the bodies."
Tate's eyebrows shoot up, "…Why?" he asks, truly confused.
"I kind of…I like the idea of having an actual grave. Just a headstone in the garden or something, and I think everyone else would, too. Everything's been going so well and I haven't felt like killing Hayden again and I just want it to stay like this." Violet sucks in a breath, brushing her nose against Tate's. "Please?" she pouts, kissing the corner of his mouth.
His lips tilt up under her mouth, and he nods. "I think that's…I think that's a brilliant idea."
Violet punches the air, cheering. She celebrates her win by rolling Tate onto his back and straddling his already naked hips, slipping her t-shirt over her head and throwing it somewhere in the corner of the green room. The other ghosts in the house mutter something about sound proofing the rooms (Violet's, at least) as the noises coming from the pair's room become almost unbearable. Bo ducks into the attic. Hayden grumbles, hiding her head under her pillow, half jealous. Nora crawls into bed, happy that someone else is happy. Moira continues cleaning the kitchen, rolling her eyes. Chad and Patrick smile at each other across the room when they hear the soft I love you Violet breathes out. Travis doesn't look up from his tea party with Larry's little girl's.
The atmosphere changes, and suddenly it's not the Murder House. There's no doom and gloom, there's no crying. The sadness is still there, but it's not blatant and upfront. Tate digs up the bodies around the property with Chad and Patrick's help, and Violet directs where the bodies are to be placed. She goes through the house and asks everyone what sort of flowers they want planted over their graves, and she's met with happiness.
A few years later, when a new family has just been chased out of the house for a fourth time because this place is theirs, Constance has finally saved up enough money to buy it. It's finally theirs, and nobody's sad anymore. There's frequent laughter, and Violet's even sort of friends with Hayden.
The grave garden is blooming, and there's no trace of dirt beneath the yellow and pink and purple and blue flowers.