There are nights where Leo can't take it anymore.

This is one of them.

It's cold, so very cold in this manor, and he's still tip-toeing around barefoot, clad in something too-old and too-flimsy for a Duke of the Baskervilles. He doesn't care. Sheer material is covered by the weight of a heavy velvet cloak, but even the deep, bitter red isn't enough to shield him from a single chill.

On nights like this, Elliot would have held him.

Sleet hammers against the dark windows of Vincent's room as Leo drifts inside, and he's unsurprised to see the blond simply standing there, picking at frayed, tattered edges of curtains he's cut up in his own stress. Vincent barely glances up at him – seems to know, seems to understand, and it makes him sick to think that someone like this is the only person he has left that has any semblance of connection to Elliot, to the emotional burden of losing him.

"My lord?"

A vocalized acknowledgement, even if not a visual one.

Leo lurches forward, then, shivering all the harder, pale hands reaching out and clutching thoughtlessly for the front of Vincent's own cloak. They don't quite reach as Vincent catches them instead, clasping both small, cold hands between his own, rubbing slowly and carefully and tipping his head down to huff a warm breath over the expanse of them.

"I'm sorry."

And Leo believes him.

He's never believed another word out of this snake's mouth. He's never believed a single damned thing – never trusted him, never wanted to, but oh, god, he believes it that Vincent is sorry that he's lost Elliot. He believes it, because Vincent somehow loved him, too, even wrapped up in the roll of chessmaster extraordinaire as he had been. And so it's that simple statement that breaks him, sends him sniffling at first, then simply sobbing, caterwauling in shrill mimicry of the storm past the windows.

Vincent, like any good servant, says nothing and only holds him, wraps him up in his own cloak and strokes his hair, mismatched gaze trained upon the ceiling as his own eyes glisten like glass.

(Leo feels sorry for him, too).