author's note: This may turn into a series of oneshots but, for now, you can enjoy a oneshot full of Tom/Hester goodness. Seriously, there should be more FanFiction on these two. One of the most underrated couples. This is set after Mortal Engines, and is before Predator's Gold. I'm sure a lot went on between Tom and Hester during the space of these two novels.
Title: Fall Into Your Sunlight
Possibly one of the weathers Tom detested the most. Quick on his heels, the boy searched blindly for his airship, eyes squinting due to the powerful droplets of water. By now his clothes were drenched, his hair dripped, and his cheeks stung from the cold. This was humiliating. Unlike him, though, his companion appeared more cheery about the weather, but she was just as keen to get into the dry.
The Jenny Hanniver was stationed not too far away, across a tiny field of mud. Mud. Tom scowled. This wouldn't end well. As soon as his shoes met the slippery surface, he skidded, almost falling head first. Hester laughed at his misery. Biting on his lower lip, Tom stopped, attempting to regain his balance. Without a care in the world, Hester hurried past, beating him to the airship.
It was simple: the more time he spent planning where to place his feet, the more he would get wet. And Tom really didn't want to get wet anymore! So he bolted for the airship and, at first, all seemed successful. Until his heel didn't catch the ground, and he slid, his entire body falling forwards so his face was splat in the mud. Never had he heard Hester laugh so hard in his life.
To be honest, Hester wasn't sure if she had laughed so hard before either. Groaning, Tom slowly scrambled to his feet, only to slip and fall again.
'Oh Gods, can you get up?' Hester asked, although she didn't sound concerned. Just terribly amused.
Tom wasn't sure if he could at first. The third time he attempted to regain his balance, he was able to step forwards slightly, before skidding over again. Hester was in such hysterics tears were trailing down her cheek.
'That's just not funny,' Tom said, wiping a dirty hand down his muddy face. 'Blegh.'
Hester's laughing continued to ring in his ears, and he couldn't help smile a little. Her joy always made him feel happy too, whatever the case. Rising to his feet once more, Tom slowly and carefully stepped over to where she stood, and, thankfully, Hester took his hand and helped him inside the Jenny. Once he was in the light, the two were able to inspect his properly.
The boy looked worse than they thought.
Tom was covered from head-to-toe in mud.
'Urgh.' Lowering his eyes, he realised he was making an absolute mess on the floor. 'Thank Quirke Miss Fang isn't seeing this...'
Pulling a lopsided smile, Hester guided him towards the washroom and literally pushed him in there. 'Get washed. You stink of shit.'
'I thought I was falling into mud!' Tom exclaimed, now feeling even more disgusting. Without a second's hesitation, he cleaned the mess from his clothes, before scrubbing away the mud from his face, hands and arms. The warm water felt good against his body and he spent a little more time than he should have in the shower.
When he finished, Tom hung his clothes across the shower rail, before drying himself with a towel and wrapping it around his waist. Quickly he was met with a chill. Inhaling sharply between his teeth, Tom exited the washroom.
To his surprise, Hester had everything prepared. The girl passed him suitable wear, amusement still evident over her face. Tom rolled his eyes at her, to which she just sniggered at, before dressing himself in a room nearby. Changed, he came out of the room, and began to dry his hair with the towel, although not very successfully.
Growing impatient, Tom shook his head wildly, spraying water everywhere like a dog.
He stopped instantly, realising he had only given poor Hester a shower. 'Oops, sorry.'
The amusement had vanished during the period he changed. Now she scowled at him, and snatched the towel from his hand. 'Sit down, and let me do it.'
'I can dry my own hair.'
'I'm not a child!'
'You certainly act like one! Sit your ass down!'
Tom opened his mouth to retaliate, but her iron glare only warned him he was stepping into dangerous grounds. Slumping his shoulders, he plopped down onto a chair, and allowed Hester to dry his hair for him with the towel.
At first she was very aggressive, and he complained a little, not that it made a difference. Then, when she had possibly expressed how angry he made her, she began a more gentle motion, sliding the towel around the back of his head so it rested around his neck.
He looked at her, and realised she was smiling to herself. She then ruffled his hair with her hands, 'All better now.'
'What about you? You're not dry yet.'
'I put on dry clothes; I'm fine.'
'I disagree,' Tom smirked. Hester frowned at his mischievous expression, uncertain how she felt about the way he was acting.
Then he grabbed her around the waist and switched places with her. An exclaim of protest and colourful words escaped her lips, but Tom didn't listen, nor did he allow her to escape. The towel was soon in his hands, and he dried her hair as viciously as she did him.
Hester was literally screaming at him, and he could only laugh. The male was taken aback when she sent a fist to his groin, but he only laughed harder, 'You're so cruel sometimes.'
Red in the face, Hester threw the towel off her now messy hair. 'You... You–– Gods, you're so––'
'Wonderful? I know.'
'I want to fucking murder you!'
Despite her words and her efforts to act displeased, Hester's heart fluttered. That damn smile of his. His eyes, the way his cheeks rose whenever he laughed, and his scruffy hair. Tom was so childish sometimes, so uncaring and loveable. It made her want to smile and laugh with him. She loved that, even after everything that had happened to him, he still found happiness.
Tom's face glowed with joy. His eyes twinkled with affection and amusement. 'You're so funny, haha.'
'Give over, Natsworthy,' she scowled.
Soon he realised she didn't feel mutual about the situation, his smile instantly dropped. Hester was shocked when he knelt down so he was at her level, concern clouding his eyes. It would always amaze her how he instantly changed his attitude whenever she felt uncomfortable. It would always amaze her how much he cared.
Tom was so sweet; she didn't know how to fathom his odd behaviour.
'Sorry. I didn't mean to irritate you or anything...'
'Irritate? That's a bloody understatement!' As always, these were the words she truly didn't want to say. Tom might anger her, but he made her happy, made her life worth living.
This he wasn't aware of though. 'Ah...' Rubbing the back of his head, he said, 'I was only having a bit of fun, but I guess I can get overboard sometimes.' Then he smiled, and it was as if his bright smile stopped the world completely. Just like that, he filled her with warmth–– but why was she shivering?
Why did she tremble, why did her heart race, why did she feel so... good?
'I just want you to be okay.'
No one in her life wanted her to be okay. Not like this. Not like Tom–– no one could be like Tom. When she brought two, thin arms around his neck, even she wasn't sure what she was doing.
Tom held his breath, narrowed his brows: 'Hester...?'
And she kissed him, her scarred lips brushing against his own, gently, ever so gently, timidly. By this simple touch she was filled with bliss, wanting more, but she pulled away. Then her arms fell to her sides, and then she was on her feet, blushing a dark shade of red.
'Sorry,' she sighed, then a sneer grew over her face. 'Your smile was pissing me off.'
Tom smirked, rose to his feet and caught her hand. There was a sense of ease in his movements when he brought her to him and had them kiss again. He was a little more forceful, more confident, which wasn't expected. Tom was quite bashful around the opposite gender and tended to fiddle. Right now, he was fine, if not calm.
'Liar,' he said against her lips.
Tom kissed Hester another time, then again, longer, but still softly. A short, breaking moment was shared between them when he pulled away. He had only confused her even more, but the only answer she could reach was to kiss him-– she initiated the next kiss, her touch a little harder, more aggressive, but just as passionate, just as sincere.
A wave of content washed between them. Neither panicked or rushed. They were calm, as calm as they had ever been in their lives. Tom's fingertips lightly touched her cheeks, trailing down her jagged scar, his lips massaging her own, the sudden entrance of his tongue surprising her, but quickly welcomed, to which she responded with enthusiasm, but still gentle. Still hesitant.
When his hands trailed down her face, from her neck, she sighed, in pleasure or in happiness he wasn't sure, and brought herself nearer. Their bodies were pressed against the other, and he pushed his mouth a little more forcefully against her own, triggering a boost of confidence within her. Now Hester wasn't as hesitant. She inhaled sharply, her hands losing themselves in his dark hair, brushing herself against him, arms wrapping around his neck, practically closing any gap between them.
Her excitement was quickly noticeable, but Tom merely submitted to her, both in a position they had desired for such a long, horrific time.
Tom's hands fell from her face, and they freely roamed at her hips, the warmth of her body meeting his palms. They kissed and kissed, hands in each other's hair, holding their faces, waists, themselves.
If it weren't for Hester's impatient, growling tummy, neither would have been able to break away. Tom sniggered when their lips came apart. 'Hungry?'
Hester's brain was dead. At first she didn't know he had spoken, 'Um.'
'I'll take that as a "yes",' he said, kissing her again, before squeezing her affectionately. 'Maybe I should make our food tonight.'
Gradually, Hester's senses came back to her, but she still felt faint and dizzy. 'Last time you tried that, you almost set the Jenny on fire.' She rested her head on his shoulder, 'That was nice.'
Tom wasn't sure if she was referring to the incident where he did set the curtains on fire, or their kiss. However, even though Hester had her moments of pure insanity, he knew –– or hoped–– she was referring to their kiss. She was right: it was nice. In fact, Tom had never felt so comfortable in his life, he loved her close, loved her body against his.
Both remained in a tight, yet soft embrace for a good couple of minutes, tolerating the noise of Hester's rumbling tummy until Tom couldn't bottle in his amusement anymore. 'I think you are hungry,' sniggering, he released the embrace and headed towards the cupboards where their food was stashed. 'Let me make you something.'
Before he reached the food, though, the towel was thrown at him, draping his eyes from view. Then he was gently pushed aside, and he could hear the happiness in her voice.
'I know how to make a sandwich, Natsworthy.'