exeterlinden: the watch (the watch)
[personal profile] exeterlinden
Title: Peppermint Tea (a Wildflower Honey remix)
Fandom: Wilby Wonderful
Pairing: Dan/Duck
Warnings: Mentions of past suicidal ideation and attempted suicide
Rating: PG
Spoilers: For all of the movie
Disclaimer: I own nothing.
Summary: Dan is sitting in Duck's kitchen in the late afternoon on a mild summer day, and he is all out of words.

Author's Note: This is a short little thing, a remix for [personal profile] akamine_chan's lovely Wildflower Honey, and originally posted here. Betaed by the gracious [personal profile] calvinahobbes - thank you :)

Dan is sitting in Duck's kitchen in the late afternoon on a mild summer day, and he is all out of words. He has used them up over the course of the last two weeks. First pleading with Valerie not to leave, then calling her up to try to explain and apologize; two days later, organizing the house sale with Carol French, maintaining that he didn't care about the profit, and finally writing a handful of short and painful letters which he placed in a neat stack on the bedside table of his motel room before setting out into the night. He used up the very last of his words in the aftermath of the events that followed, talking to doctors and psychiatrists; explaining why, answering questions, making promises. He's all out, now. He's tired, and his throat hurts, and he's grateful to be where he is, here, in the quiet of Duck's home.

The first thing he saw when he woke up in the hospital seven days ago was the Wilby sky, pale and light and full of hope. The second thing his eyes settled on was Duck MacDonald, and now he can't stop looking. Duck has a stark black and red tattoo on his shoulder, workman's hands, and a way of smoking cigarettes that speaks of heavy addiction.

Duck's home is rich with family history. The kitchen has oak floorboards that look a century old, the windows are covered by white net drapes, the inside of the cupboards are lined with flowery wallpaper. Duck's movements are slow and gentle as he handles a heavy mason jar of honey, an orange ceramic teapot that Dan imagines has only been kept out of sentiment, and two beautiful antique-looking teacups. The skin of Duck's fingers is dark brown against the light cream of the china, and Dan still can't stop looking.

When Duck brings the tea over to the table it smells fresh and sweet, like hope and home. The afternoon sun slants through the drapes and paints a pretty pattern on the kitchen table. Duck hands a cup of tea to Dan. He smiles as their hands touch briefly - looking a little shy - but he doesn't say anything. Dan smiles back tentatively, trying it out.

Six days ago, Buddy French had brought Dan the neat stack of letters along with the rest of his belongings from the motel room. He had placed the brown paper bag in the bedside cabinet at the hospital. Those letters had been the last concrete remains of all the tough and painful words from the past weeks - and Dan tore them up and threw them away when he was released from hospital, earlier today. Now, he brings the delicate china cup to his lips and takes a careful sip. The tea is hot and good. The honey soothes the dull ache in his throat, and Dan thinks that maybe soon he'll find new words to say, and he'll have happier stories to tell. For now, it's enough just to sit next to Duck at the old wooden table in the bright kitchen as they drink their tea, savoring the quiet.

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