THE St. Louis Speakeasy
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Ahoy!
 Post subject: Re: Ein leeres Haus
PostPosted: Wed Jul 21, 2010 11:19 pm GMT 
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There was another long moment of heavy silence. When at last he spoke, Han made no direct reply to the question. Instead, he stirred, set his hands on his knees, and pushed himself to his feet with a sigh. "It's too cold to sit outside on a night like this."

Having slipped his hands into his pockets, he did not look directly at Lin. Not at first. But after a moment, the strong emotions holding him in their grip seemed to fade somewhat in their intensity, and he turned back to face the other man, extending a hand to help him up. Meeting Lin's eyes. His expression was not gentle as he did so. It was tired, and still a little closed off, as though this revelation had made him wary of the increasingly uncertain future.

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Amicitia concero omnis
 Post subject: Re: Ein leeres Haus
PostPosted: Mon Aug 02, 2010 12:33 am GMT 
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It was a moment before Lin looked up enough to see the hand that was offered him, and another moment before he used it to help himself to his feet. He didn’t look at Han. He didn’t regret hiding his chest pain from the other man—it was his own issue, after all, not Han’s. Han had enough to worry about, and Lin didn’t want to make the other man even more burdened. One thing he didn’t admit to himself, however, was that perhaps it also had more than a little to do with his own pride. Admitting that he was having chest pain would also, in his mind, be admitting that he was weak.

There was a glimpse of that pride in the way that he looked straight ahead as he walked back, towards The Dragonfly, his back straight and his face impassive. He had never wanted Han to know, and now that he did, Lin didn’t know what to think of it, what to do. And so he simply walked, nodding lightly to Han’s observation about the cold.

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Play it across the table
What if we steal this city blind?
If they want anything, let 'em nail it down.
— Carl Sandburg


Det tog 25 år att ens komma så här långt och jag ser en framtid där jag kunde bli något stort...

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Ahoy!
 Post subject: Re: Ein leeres Haus
PostPosted: Mon Aug 09, 2010 3:12 pm GMT 
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For the moment, Han supposed he would be able to keep his melancholy under control. One thing that he'd learned over the course of a tumultuous life was that sometimes the only way to proceed was to do so one day at a time. This day would be over in a mere matter of hours, and tomorrow he would wake up with a bad taste in his mouth and another weight on his shoulders, and life would go on. In a sudden impulsive movement, he reached over and took Lin's hand in his once again.

"I'm sorry," he murmured, watching Lin from the corner of his eye. "I shouldn't have lost my temper. But I would prefer, in future. . . if you can be honest with me. I'd rather know than be kept in the dark."

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"On a side note, dvorak, looks like the Pope is recognising your authority in Sainting people. Can only be one person representing God on earth at a time" -TFP


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Amicitia concero omnis
 Post subject: Re: Ein leeres Haus
PostPosted: Mon Oct 11, 2010 7:47 pm GMT 
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Lin sighed lightly, allowing the contact and feeling the warmth of Han's hand, the man's fingers around his own. It was nearly comforting, would have been if not for the more pressing issues that surrounded them. He was quiet for a long moment, however, before nodding; he kept his eyes straight ahead, still. "I'm sorry," he murmured lowly. "Maybe. . .I should've said something."

Again, he fell silent—for longer this time and it almost seemed as though he wouldn't speak at all. Then: "Can you. . .stay? Just for tonight."

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Play it across the table
What if we steal this city blind?
If they want anything, let 'em nail it down.
— Carl Sandburg


Det tog 25 år att ens komma så här långt och jag ser en framtid där jag kunde bli något stort...

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Ahoy!
 Post subject: Re: Ein leeres Haus
PostPosted: Mon Nov 29, 2010 1:15 am GMT 
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Han sighed and ran his free hand through his hair. At this point, staying the night would only mean four, five hours at the most. He would have to be up early if he wanted sufficient time to walk back to his apartment, go through his morning routine of showering and shaving, set up Jet with all the conveniences he would need during the day so that he would have to exert himself as little as possible, make breakfast for the two of them, get to the clinic, and have the place opened up by the time his first patients arrived. But he couldn't even recall quite when the last time was that he'd stayed the night with Lin. Had it been a week and a half? Two weeks? Three? And after all, it was late and cold, and he was exhausted. The prospect of dropping Lin off at the door and making the return journey alone was suddenly unappealing beyond belief. And so he merely acquiesced with a silent nod as they drew into sight of the Dragonfly.

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"Because studies have shown that dvorak's a genius" - Dass
"On a side note, dvorak, looks like the Pope is recognising your authority in Sainting people. Can only be one person representing God on earth at a time" -TFP


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Amicitia concero omnis
 Post subject: Re: Ein leeres Haus
PostPosted: Tue Dec 07, 2010 6:43 am GMT 
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The silent nod was enough for Lin, for now. It was too late to contemplate on anything further and as they neared the familiar building that had come to be home to him in the past six years, he sighed, pulling the key from his pocket. His one solace was that at least tonight, he wouldn’t be sleeping alone in the old building, with only the sound of the wind to keep him company.

Lin said nothing as he led the younger man up the stairs, to his room at the end of the hall—the door stood open there, and the older man couldn’t remember if he had left it that way earlier or not. In the end, he supposed it didn’t matter.

He paused in the doorway of the room however, glancing at Han; after a long moment, he merely sighed and let his hand brush Han’s before going to the bed to turn down the covers.

_________________
Play it across the table
What if we steal this city blind?
If they want anything, let 'em nail it down.
— Carl Sandburg


Det tog 25 år att ens komma så här långt och jag ser en framtid där jag kunde bli något stort...

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Ahoy!
 Post subject: Re: Ein leeres Haus
PostPosted: Sun Dec 26, 2010 9:06 pm GMT 
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As Han stood for a moment in the doorway, contemplating the prospect of a real bed, he found himself unbelievably grateful for another chance to sleep in one. He'd given his own bed up to Jet ages ago, and had since rotated between sleeping on a spare cot he'd brought home from the clinic, sleeping on the couch, and falling asleep accidentally while seated in a chair, either in the living room with his head leaning against the backrest, or in the kitchen, slumped forward at the table with his head pillowed on his arms. A rush of weariness overwhelmed him, and the simple act of taking off his coat and shoes suddenly seemed impossibly demanding. Rather than stopping to unlace them, he simply stepped on the heel of each foot with the toe of the one opposite, pulling his feet out of the shoes one by one. For a moment, he wondered whether he should say something to Lin, but he was too exhausted to think coherently, much less to make conversation. Even knowing that he could only afford to sleep for a few hours tonight, he was sure that even a brief rest would do him a world of good.

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"Because studies have shown that dvorak's a genius" - Dass
"On a side note, dvorak, looks like the Pope is recognising your authority in Sainting people. Can only be one person representing God on earth at a time" -TFP


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Amicitia concero omnis
 Post subject: Re: Ein leeres Haus
PostPosted: Sat Jan 01, 2011 5:53 am GMT 
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Even Lin didn’t bother to speak as he led the other man in. He hardly cared if Han left his apparel on or not. He moved slowly, his age seeming to show in his movements more than ever now, or maybe it was merely exhaustion and the new knowledge made it seem like something more. In any case, he only sighed softly, breaking away from Han to climb the stairs, on hand on the banister. The wood creaked under his feet as he made his way up—even the building seemed old and worn now.

Though he was silent and seemingly weary, his mind trudged on as well. Things he would have to do in the morning. Clean the bar, restock the shelves, tend the still. It wasn’t enough. All those things could be done on a kind of autopilot and it wasn’t enough to keep him from thinking on the fact that he would be terribly alone. He felt a twinge in his chest again and paused on the stairs to rub it absently, mind still filled with vague thoughts of an empty, lonely tomorrow. The feeling passed, and he continued walking; giving himself a day to rest didn’t even cross his mind.

_________________
Play it across the table
What if we steal this city blind?
If they want anything, let 'em nail it down.
— Carl Sandburg


Det tog 25 år att ens komma så här långt och jag ser en framtid där jag kunde bli något stort...

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Ahoy!
 Post subject: Re: Ein leeres Haus
PostPosted: Fri Jan 07, 2011 1:28 am GMT 
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Han shrugged off his overcoat and jacket, and slung them carelessly over the back of a chair. Suddenly he could scarcely keep his eyes open, the heaviness of his eyelids threatening to put him to sleep whilst he was still on his feet. He was ready to simply collapse onto the bed, otherwise fully dressed, when he noticed that the hems of his trousers were cold and damp from his walk. He hadn't noticed while his shoes were on, but now the wet was threatening to soak into his socks, and so with a muttered curse he removed the trousers as well. It wouldn't be such a problem if he'd had time to hem them properly, but somehow he'd never managed to make time for it, and so now they dragged just enough to wick up a hell of a lot of moisture from rain or snow or a damp ground. The exhaustion weighed down his limbs like lead, dulling his brain, seeming to block out whatever coherent thoughts to which he'd managed to cling.

Sitting heavily on the edge of the bed, he raised a hand to further unbutton the top of his collar. No tie; he'd dressed rapidly once the call had come, and had left the house in a rush. He had a feeling that, in spite of his customary insomnia, tonight he would be asleep the moment his head hit the pillow. With this in mind, he remained sitting, watching Lin move about the room in a sleep deprivation-induced daze. It seemed terribly uncouth to stop by for the first time and fall asleep before Lin even had a chance to get into bed, and so he was determined at least to keep himself up long enough to bid the other man goodnight.

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"Because studies have shown that dvorak's a genius" - Dass
"On a side note, dvorak, looks like the Pope is recognising your authority in Sainting people. Can only be one person representing God on earth at a time" -TFP


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Amicitia concero omnis
 Post subject: Re: Ein leeres Haus
PostPosted: Thu Mar 10, 2011 6:37 am GMT 
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Lin, however, was taking his time in coming to the bed, his head too full of thoughts yet. Thoughts of what to do next, of what the future could hold for him, for Han, for Danny and Billy. It was a strange thought which had not struck him so clearly in a long while. His eyes were on the photos on the shelf again. New ones had joined the picture of him, Zach, and Danny from Clarksville. Now there was also one with Danny and Billy that he had insisted on once Danny had recovered enough after Lutz. He'd been afraid then, that he would never get another chance and wanted something tangible, some frozen moment with his wayward son. Standing beside it, was another old picture that Han would recognize from the cabin—the one with the younger version of Lin, what must have been his parents beside him, his mother holding a much younger child.

After a long moment, he sighed. What good were such pictures if he wasn't around to see them any longer? What had been the point in them? They were painful. He turned slightly, enough to see Han from the corner of his eye; he knew the man was waiting for him, that they were both exhausted and in need of the sleep. He looked back to the photos one last time—if he were to die, he wanted to memorize those faces, take them with him wherever he would go.

Perhaps that was the point of them, then.

Yet, he couldn't seem to move, not until another long minute had passed. He sighed and finally managed to move, to drag his feet to the edge of the bed. He ran a hand over Han's cheek, leaning in to take a kiss, his eyes closing tiredly as he did.

_________________
Play it across the table
What if we steal this city blind?
If they want anything, let 'em nail it down.
— Carl Sandburg


Det tog 25 år att ens komma så här långt och jag ser en framtid där jag kunde bli något stort...

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Ahoy!
 Post subject: Re: Ein leeres Haus
PostPosted: Sun May 22, 2011 11:41 am GMT 
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Rather than provide comfort, the kiss sent his heart sinking. The two people left to him in this world were living, it seemed, on borrowed time. Every moment spent with one was time lost with the other; every moment spent working, following his convictions, was time lost with both of them. It was too ironic, really, that by working long hours to keep his son fed and clothed with a roof over his head, he was passing up the chance to spend time with him. Each second was precious, and yet they slipped through his fingers like running sand. Perhaps that was why he'd been unable to sleep. Even now, thinking about this precarious balance, he found himself seized with a sort of panic that penetrated the fog of his exhaustion. These days, he struggled constantly against an overwhelming malaise born of chronic weariness and the crushing knowledge of his own helplessness, ultimately, to save the people he loved from untimely death.

His arms encircled Lin's waist as the kiss came to an end, and Han pulled him close, burying his face in Lin's shirt. The thought of being left behind to mourn them both was, as always, unbearable. At times like this, it was easy to surrender to a sort of paralyzing panic, feeling the tenuous nature of the future he'd spent a brief while looking forward to, a future with Lin and Jet in his life, a future in which, for once, he'd thought he had a chance at being happy. And yet, in the end, the only thing to do was to go on--tomorrow, and the next day, and the next. The way he always had.
Slowly, he relaxed his hold on Lin, beginning to draw back without meeting his eyes.

He was very tired.

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"Because studies have shown that dvorak's a genius" - Dass
"On a side note, dvorak, looks like the Pope is recognising your authority in Sainting people. Can only be one person representing God on earth at a time" -TFP


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Amicitia concero omnis
 Post subject: Re: Ein leeres Haus
PostPosted: Thu Nov 24, 2011 6:11 am GMT 
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Somehow Lin could feel the weariness in his own heart, in Hans, and sighed softly. He sank down onto the bed, face pressed against Han's neck. "Ich liebe dich," he murmured quietly, feeling the fur on Han's neck and breathing into it. That scent. . .the one that was entirely Han's—he'd always loved it. He could sit there all night with his nose against Han's neck and listening to the other man's breathing, his heart. His eyes were half-closed from exhaustion and the simple thought.

If only they had met earlier, had more time.

But there was no use thinking that now. It would only ruin what time they had left. And so Lin forced a tired smile, kissed Han's cheek. "We'll. . .talk in th'mornin'. Ich werde dich immer lieben."

He laid down then, closing his eyes. It was all he could do now, when they were both so tired.

_________________
Play it across the table
What if we steal this city blind?
If they want anything, let 'em nail it down.
— Carl Sandburg


Det tog 25 år att ens komma så här långt och jag ser en framtid där jag kunde bli något stort...

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Ahoy!
 Post subject: Re: Ein leeres Haus
PostPosted: Thu Jun 14, 2012 7:01 pm GMT 
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"I'll have to be out early." Han lay back onto the mattress, belying his exhaustion with a noise somewhere between a sigh and a groan. Lately he had taken to sleeping on a cot outside Jet's door, the better to track the boy's coughing during the night. This bed was softer than what he'd become accustomed to, though he'd never minded the way the hard, stretched canvas of cot supported his back. He let his head sink back into the pillow, staring blearily up towards the ceiling for a moment before turning his head to look over at Lin. "I'll try and close things down early at the clinic. It will be better if we talk then."

There was a time when his gentleman's instincts, however long-dormant they may have been, would have prevented him from creeping out of here in the cold hours of the early dawn. Now, though, he could scarcely afford the luxury of staying. After all, what if Jet's health took a sudden turn? What if a patient tried to reach him and couldn't? In the years immediately following the war, he had needed this chaos to distract him from the visions which haunted his waking and sleeping hours, and from the utter emptiness of his existence. It was only now, eight years later, that he could truly feel, at times, as though he was slowly coming back to life. But what sort of a life had he made for himself? Jet, dying. Lin, in failing health. At times like these, he felt as though the weight of the world rested on his shoulders. It was this, more than anything, which kept him from collapsing wearily into sleep, night after night.

In the darkness, he closed his eyes and tried to clear his mind, forcing himself to focus on the sound of his own breathing. Then, turning his head back toward Lin, he reached out a hand and laced his fingers with the other man's.

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"Because studies have shown that dvorak's a genius" - Dass
"On a side note, dvorak, looks like the Pope is recognising your authority in Sainting people. Can only be one person representing God on earth at a time" -TFP


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Amicitia concero omnis
 Post subject: Re: Ein leeres Haus
PostPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2012 6:54 pm GMT 
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Lin only nodded absently to that, murmuring a quiet, "Of course. . .s'fine." He had expected as much. When they'd first started to see each other, Lin had always wanted the man to stay well into the morning, to eat breakfast and sit at the table - perhaps read the newspaper - like a normal lover, instead of rushing off as though it were nothing more than a secret, shameful tryst. Slowly, however, he'd become used to it, and though the desire for the man to stay remained, he began to think on it less and less. It was reality. He stopped doubting that Han had truly been there when he woke alone. He stopped wondering if it was a dream that he'd laid beside the other man - because it was. A good dream, but dreams only lasted so long as the night, and when he opened his eyes to the light of day, they were gone.

But just before sleep, it was real. He would allow himself to know that, and his fingers tightened their grip on Han's. The man was warm, a comfort beside the tired body. Just now, in this moment, Han was there and it was all that mattered. He didn't mind the promise, though he thought of them as only words. There were no such things as promises. Just words.

A kind of calm crept over him then, those fingers twined with his own, and Lin let out a quiet sigh. Sleep took him then, and it would be almost eleven before he would wake again. The night was quiet, though it began to rain, cold and dreary, in the early hours before Lin woke. He could hear the quiet pattering on the room before he opened his eyes.

_________________
Play it across the table
What if we steal this city blind?
If they want anything, let 'em nail it down.
— Carl Sandburg


Det tog 25 år att ens komma så här långt och jag ser en framtid där jag kunde bli något stort...

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Ahoy!
 Post subject: Re: Ein leeres Haus
PostPosted: Sun Jul 01, 2012 1:41 pm GMT 
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In spite of his exhaustion, Han had struggled to fall asleep, and had slept restlessly. He dreamed of the old house, a labyrinth under the thick blanket of summer heat. The sleeping porch, its windows open, where he'd dragged his mattress, though in truth he was too old to sleep out there with the rest of the children. He had lain awake there, too, listening to Koenrad's soft snores. One of the twins ground his teeth as he slept and the noise had grated on Han's ears, made him wince. In his dream, he had wandered the dark halls and passages, his heart set to pounding by the fear of being caught here--here, in this house, where he did not belong. He searched for his old room, which held all the relics of his past life, but found he could no longer remember how the winding stairs and passages and empty parlors connected. The shadows played tricks with his perception, until he found himself wondering whether he had ever truly lived there at all.

He woke several times during the night, just long enough to glance at his surroundings and at Lin's sleeping form beside him. Each time, he slipped easily back into the dream, until his sleeping and waking worlds blurred together. The last time he woke, he could see through the blinds that the world outside was just beginning to lighten. Soon it would be dawn. Fighting the urge to lay back and keep dreaming, he pressed a hand to his face. His eyes felt puffy and swollen, but he rubbed them until his vision cleared. Outside he could hear the sound of rain.

When Lin woke, he would be alone.

_________________
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"Because studies have shown that dvorak's a genius" - Dass
"On a side note, dvorak, looks like the Pope is recognising your authority in Sainting people. Can only be one person representing God on earth at a time" -TFP


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