othersdie: shadows withering the flowers (!Multipurpose)
Justin Pendleton ([personal profile] othersdie) wrote2013-03-10 03:15 am

closed action / voice

[Action for Neil & Todd / Off-Network In All Conceivable Ways]

[Justin is, by habit, more of a night owl than a morning person. On Saturday morning, however, he finds himself tip-toeing around wakefulness at an early hour. Reluctant to open his eyes and submit to being awake, he groggily tries to determine what might have disturbed him.

It's warm. Justin's bed isn't usually warm (with the exception of the spot by his feet where the cat likes to sleep). There's also... breathing?

That's enough to chase away all remaining vestiges of sleep and, in the dim light, he observes what he can. There's a figure to either side of him, faces obscured by shadow, breathing slow and regular. The bite of something unfamiliar on his left wrist encourages him to lift his arm--carefully--for inspection. The arm of the figure to his left rises as well, connected to his wrist by a set of handcuffs. The sleeper shifts without waking and the wan light makes it possible for Justin to identify him as Neil.

And it all snaps together. He's in Neil and Todd's room. More specifically, he's in the bed that Neil and Todd share, handcuffed to former and sandwiched between the two.

With a very limited number of exceptions, Justin doesn't appreciate interpersonal contact. That this current situation involves physical contact with his best friends and roommates makes it all the more awkward, if tolerable. What really bothers him at this moment isn't the fact that he's handcuffed to Neil, in bed with his friends, or even that those two friends are very secretly married: it's the fact that they're both, essentially, cuddling him. A necessity, perhaps, in a bed that wasn't meant to contain three people comfortably, but that doesn't help Justin that much at the moment.

He stays still and quiet, reluctant to wake Neil or Todd. This is progress. Not so long ago, finding himself unexpectedly in bed with anyone would have been enough to, at the very least, inspire panic. Justin suspects that is immunity to surprise or anxiety in the event of bizarre happenings has been increasing exponentially after his four-year anniversary in the City rolled around because there's no panic. There's no overwhelming desire to run away (which is good, as being handcuffed to Neil would have made that difficult). Or maybe it has more to do with a gradual acceptance of snuggling brought about by Euphie.

Whatever the reason for his lack of anxiety, Justin doesn't move. It's not so bad. Physical contact with another human is comforting in its way and the bed is absurdly warm and cozy, heated by three bodies as it is. He doesn't find himself threatened by his roommates' sexual preferences; they don't talk about it, of course, but he doesn't mind that they're a couple and doesn't comment on it. They return the favor by not mentioning Justin's lack of sexual interest in much of anyone.

With no real reason to wake either of them and no inclination to fall asleep, Justin relaxes as much as he can and thinks about how things have changed. He can wait for his friends to wake up.

(And he won't admit that he's comfortable or that this may be doing wonders for his chronic loneliness.)

[Public Voice Post]

I don't remember if this has been asked before, but is there any apparent pattern where the handcuff curse is concerned? Are the participants usually friends? Enemies? Strangers? Given the unlikelihood that I would be handcuffed to a friend, I can't believe it's coincidence.

[And if you know Justin, you will also know that he has three friends in a vast City. The odds of randomly being attached to one of them are slim to none.]

It's nothing important. It just seems that there's significance in what happens here more often than not.