[Samuel x Roman]

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e d e n

The bell rung which meant they had to go back to class. Eden kind of just wanted to go home. Maybe he could find Papa and tell him he didn't feel well or something. He'd probably ask questions, but it also wouldn't be the first time Eden did something like that so it probably wouldn't be a big deal.

"Yeah, I know they're just douchbags," Eden agreed, looking down a little on his feet, he knew they were just being assholes, but that didn't mean the things they said didn't hurt and make him self conscious. It was nice to hear it reaffirmed by someone else though, someone who wasn't family and would say that no matter what, and someone who, in Eden's opinion, seemed pretty cool.

He hesitated for a moment, trying to think of what to say before leaving and then settled for, "Thank you," again. But in Spanish this time, then he tried to smile and hurried of, which was a little awkward, but he got nervous around people he didn't know sometimes. He was really grateful though, and maybe he could feel a little safer in the hallways knowing that some people were willing to step in and make sure things like that wouldn't happen.
 

lxngdon

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h a r p e r
Since Harper and his siblings had started to get older, their freedoms in terms of curfews and just general ability to go out had been increased. Harper, who was almost fifteen at this point in time, was able to come and go almost as he pleased. Of course, he always had to let his dads know if he was planning to go out. But most of the time, they didn't have a problem with it.

Today, Harper and Stella had gone to one of the larger shopping centres near their suburb, just to get some ice cream, shop for some new clothes and have a nice time. Harper liked that he was close enough with his siblings to be able to do things like this. He had a lot of friends who hated their siblings, or at least said that they did and Harper thought that that was quite sad. He couldn't imagine hating someone who was supposed to be your best friend.

"Where do you want to go?"
Harper asked Stella as they walked. He was wearing a pair of white shorts and a pastel pink T-shirt, with a bracelet made from a flower crown, and pastel painted nails. He hadn't even realised how feminine he looked when he had left the house that day, and he still didn't realise it now.
 
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s t e l l a​

Stella had to admit that she really enjoyed hanging out with just Harper. She loved hanging out with Eden too because he was her twin and they shared a really special friendship, and she loved hanging out with Letha because she was a sweetie and she was the only other girl in the family so they shared a special bond as sister. Harper and her didn't really have a specific thing like that, other than being the oldest maybe. But it was still something special to hang out with him alone. Maybe because she felt like Harper was a little more mature, and because she felt like he could get not just being like everyone else. She wasn't saying Letha or Eden weren't unique, they really were, but in terms of clothes and stuff they didn't really stand out. Harper often did, even if he didn't always know, and Stella sometimes did too.

Stella was straight up looking like her older brother's opposite, dressed top to toe in black, save for her combat boots that were green. She was dressed in a pair of swooshy black pants that she loved because they looked kind of like a long skirt, but they were actually pants, which was both hilarious and really convenient if you wanted to move around a lot, to it she wore a very simple form-fitting black top. She was also wearing makeup, which she didn't do every day, but she was getting into it more, it was mostly just some eyeliner, but it really pulled her look together.

"Well I've been really wanting a frappuchino or something, so we should get that later," Stella said after a moment of thought, the best part about getting older and getting to do more stuff by yourself was the freedom to just do whatever, "But maybe we should get to the shops we want to first so we don't have to carry drinks around? I kind of want to go to H&M, they have some cute chokers I've been meaning to get, I think they have some with flowers too, you might like them," she wasn't sure if Harper would wear something like, that but even so he would probably appreciate the aesthetic.
 

lxngdon

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h a r p e r
Harper didn't have a problem with H&M so he happily led his sister there. When they arrived, he shoved his hands into his pockets and followed her around as she perused the chokers. Though, he couldn't deny that a lot of the items on display caught his eye easily.

Harper had always had a penchant for more traditionally feminine articles of clothing. He wasn't the type to wear dresses or skirts, but he loved more 'girly' colours, and he adored girls' jewellery. So while Stella was looking at the chokers, he wandered off to the next aisle over to look at the rings. He had long and thin fingers, like their dad, and thus he loved wearing rings.

He found a set of rose gold ones set with heart-shaped gems, and brought them around to show Stella. "Hey, do you like these?" he asked her, trying one on in spite of the cardboard they were bound to. He was about to ask her another question, when he looked up and saw standing behind her perhaps one of the best looking individuals he had ever seen.

The guy was his age and tall, with a deeply bronzed skin tone that clearly indicated he was from a Middle Eastern background, like Emma-Marie. He had a light covering of stubble that still left his sharp jawline exposed, and he had sharp cheekbones and deep-set chocolate brown eyes. He kind of looked like Zayn Malik from the boy band that had been popular when Dad and Papa had been young.

And he was absolutely beautiful. Harper didn't even realise, but he was totally staring at the guy like a creep. He couldn't help it. He was mesmerising.
 
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s t e l l a

"Oh yeah, sure, they are really cute, maybe a little too pretty for my taste but they suit you," Stella said after giving the rings on Harper's fingers a quick look, making sure not to call them girly, both because he wasn't sure how Harper would feel about that and because the whole idea that things could be girly or boyish was dumb anything. Turns out that it didn't matter though because Harper seemed to have completely lost focus.

She followed his gaze only to find that it was stuck on some dude. He was probably Harper's age, maybe a little older, she honestly wasn't sure. People with facial hair just looked old to her. He was probably pretty conventionally attractive, apparently, Stella was kind of bad at catching things like that when it came to guys. Not that it mattered. She didn't really care about guys anyways, unless it was to make friends with them and then it certainly didn't matter how they looked. Unless they looked like a preppy and boring jock, then she'd probably stay away.

"Who's that? You know him?" Stella asked, voice a little hushed. "You should say hi instead of staring at him, dude," Stella reminded her brother, he wasn't usually one to not be social, so it was really odd to see him freeze up like this, especially if he did know the guy.
 

lxngdon

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h a r p e r
Harper was only broken out of his trance when Stella spoke in that hushed tone to him. He jumped, really really embarrassed to have been caught staring at some random guy, and looked away with a blush on his pale cheeks. Fuck, he thought. Fuck fuck fuck, I'm fucking busted.

But ... busted doing what? He hadn't done anything wrong -- even if staring was considered rude, he hadn't hurt the guy or made him feel uncomfortable. And just admiring someone from a distance was not a bad thing to do either. Part of Harper knew exactly what it was that he felt he had been caught doing.

But most of him was still reluctant to admit it.

"No, I don't know him,"
Harper said kind of quickly. He took the rings off, set them on the shelf and fidgeted with his hands as he kept his eyes on the floor. "Did you find what you wanted?
 
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s t e l l a

Harper's reaction was weird to say the least. He seemed really embarrassed and apparently he didn't even know the guy which just made it all weirder. Stella gave Harper a confused look, but grabbed the chokers she wanted and went to stay in line to pay.

As she stood there she tried to make sense of her brother's behavior. Sure the guy had been good looking, but was he really good looking enough to just warrant random stares? Stella didn't really get it. And how come Harper would stare at a good looking guy anyways? Not that guys couldn't like guys or anything but obviously Harper would have said something if he did, it was not like he would think that was wrong, they had two dads for gods sake.

She rejoined Harper after paying and decided there was no harm in actually just asking him what was up. Harper was usually pretty open about things so there was no point in just speculating, "why the fuck were you staring at someone you don't know like that," she said as they walked out of the store, her tone was way less harsh than her words, she just liked taking the opportunity to swear when Papa wasn't there to nag her about it.
 

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h a r p e r
Harper was just so confused that it hurt. He stole a few more glances at the guy while Stella was in line and every single time his stomach did the same little tingly backflip thing it had done when he had first taken a look at him. Why? What was happening? What the fuck was going on in his head? Harper didn't know, and that was perhaps the worst part of all of it.

So when Stella straight-up asked him why he had been staring, he genuinely didn't have an answer for her. "I ... I don't know," he mumbled, his hands in the pockets of his shorts as they walked.

He didn't look at any other boys as they made their way to their next shop, a candle store Harper had been wanting to visit. In fact, he didn't look at anyone. Recently he had been looking at girls a lot more often, and noticing the features about them that he liked. Was that the same as how he was looking at guys? Harper didn't know. It was all sort of scary.

"...Don't tell anyone about that, please,"
he mumbled.
 
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s t e l l a

Harper's total shift in mood was weird. Stella kept quiet as they walked into the candle store, at least that was something Harper wanted to so maybe it would bring him back to his normal self. If it didn't, maybe getting something good to eat or drink afterwards would. Hopefully. She just didn't want her brother to walk around feeling upset.

"Uh, sure, I guess," Stella said, not sounding entirely sure, but then she added a more confident, "I won't tell a soul, don't worry," she didn't understand why she couldn't tell anyone, it wasn't a big deal, and if Harper hadn't been acting so weird about it Stella would have probably just forgotten all about it but now he had and she couldn't help but wonder.

But she wasn't going to mention it, and instead went on to chat about the candles and which scents she liked. She trusted that if something really was bothering him he'd tell their daddies, or at least Emmie or someone. And if he didn't it probably wasn't a big deal and Stella was just reading into the situation for to much. He could have just been embarrassed because he got caught accidentally staring at someone after all, so they could just continue on with their day as normal.
 

lxngdon

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r o m a n
Before meeting Samuel, Roman would have rather died than watch a full game of any sport but tennis. It just wasn't something that interested him. Now, however, he actually kind of enjoyed watching soccer and even football sometimes, simply because it made his husband and his son happy to watch them.

His favourite games were Harper's though. Roman could watch his son play soccer all day long. It was great to see that Harper was becoming quite a skilled soccer player -- he was considered one of the best in the region, and possibly even in the state, for his age group. Roman loved seeing him thrive like this, because soccer was something that Harper had loved his entire life. Roman just loved to see his kids happy.

Today he had come to watch one of Harper's soccer games, along with Samuel. The other kids were all off doing things, but that was alright. It was about halftime and Roman was tracing little circles on Samuel's knee with his long and dainty fingers as he scrolled on his phone with the other. He was wearing his usual black skinny jeans and a purple T-shirt. He looked casual but handsome, as always. And as always, his looks were attracting him attention.
 
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s a m u e l

Samuel absolutely loved soccer, with every fiber of his being. As much as he had gotten new hobbies over the years and his sole obsession stopped being soccer it would always be his favourite. He didn't play it like he used to anymore, sure he was in good shape, not the shape he used to be in, but it was also important to recognize that he was over forty and if he damaged something playing he wouldn't be as easily back up on his feet yet, and as you grew older you just didn't compare to your younger peers anymore. On top of that he also had a very time consuming job and a big family to take care of, so getting some of the guys together when they had time was enough for him. Or at least it was because he could live vicariously through Harper now.

Harper was good. And not just from Samuel's perspective of being his parents. He was literally always the best player on the field, and Samuel was not afraid to say that he far exceeded what his own skills had been at his age, and he was so unfathomably proud.

So needless to say, he had a tendency to get really into Harper's game. And he had even when he was younger. But especially now when everyone was getting better and the worse player stopped playing or moved teams to get to play more evenly, which meant far more engaging games. Roman usually didn't get as into it as Samuel did, but he was just glad he tagged along even if he wasn't the biggest fan of the sport. He was just a good dad that way. Samuel didn't pay much attention to him though, not when they were close to half time and Harper was about to score an assist.

He was intensely watching the game, leaning forward in his seat mumbling come one just like a whole bunch of the other soccer mums and dads that were actually interested in the game and not just their own kids. Soon the ball had been passed over to Harper to his teammate who shot for a goal and-- the goalie caught it. There was a collective groan from their side of the bleachers and the game took a brak for half time just a little while there after.

"Hey I think I'm gonna go check in on Harper," Samuel stood and added "you coming along?" not really minding if Roman did or not, half time was usually reserved for tactics and soccer talk, and that just wasn't really Roman's cup of tea since he didn't really know the rules by heart in the same way someone like Samuel did.
 

lxngdon

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r o m a n
Roman looked up from his phone to see Harper's team miss their goal and like everyone else, he let out a groan. He wasn't absolutely invested like Samuel and a lot of the other soccer guys were, but he cared about whether or not his son did well nonetheless. And besides, Harper was like his papa in the sense that neither of them were very happy when their team lost. And Roman didn't like a grumpy son.

"Nah, I think I'll stay here, if that's okay,"
Roman said. There wasn't really much point in him going -- he couldn't offer much advice and he would probably just take up heaps of room with his massive size. So he decided to just chill on the bleachers until his husband came back.

He had turned back to his phone and continued to just scroll on Facebook for a little while. After a few minutes he found a video he became quite invested in, even to the point of putting his headphones in for a moment so he could listen to the sound without being obnoxious. Thus, he didn't even notice when the women sitting to his right started to giggle and gush about him, pointing out his attractive features, and just generally acting like a couple of schoolgirls.
 
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s a m u e l

"alright," Samuel said with a shrug and hurried down the bleachers to go talk to Harper. Samuel really didn't care that Roman didn't come along and he knew Harper didn't either, his head would be too much in the game and Samuel's honestly was too. The point was just that Roman was there. Not every parent that wasn't interested came to as many games as Roman did, or didn't stay for the entire duration and so on, but when it was an important one Roman always seemed to take the time to be there and it was one out of the many reasons Samuel loved him.

Samuel found Harper and spoke to him for a moment, a little about how to approach the next half of the game, but making sure that Harper knew not to contradict his coaches either. Samuel was usual welcome to be over involved with the team because he just knew soccer well from his many years on the field. Hopefully his advice could help Harper a little, though he knew it was up to his son and his teammates in the end.

As the game was starting up again Samuel headed back to the bleachers, though he kept going over the game in his head, so much so that he just sat down, patted Roman's leg a little as an hello and put all his focus back on the field, without even noticing the women who clearly were showing interest in his husband.
 

lxngdon

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r o m a n
When Samuel returned, Roman put his phone away and got ready to continue watching the game. Funny and interesting videos aside, his son was the most important, and he wanted to see it when their team won.

And they did. As Roman watched, Harper surged out ahead and ended up scoring not one, not two, but eight more goals for his team. By the end of the game, they had pulled out ahead by a whole fifteen points, and thus, they were through to the semi finals.

When the siren rang, Roman got up to his full height and cheered for his little boy. "WOOOOOOOOOO! GO HARPER!" he let out, and Harper looked up and waved in delight. Roman took his husband's hand and went with him down to the field, where he pulled Harper into a hug and rubbed his back with pride. "Good job, buddy."

Once the teams had been dismissed, Roman and his husband returned to the bleachers to collect their things. As they did, the same pair of women made eye contact with Roman and erupted into a fit of giggles. One of them waved at him. He didn't wave back but offered her a polite, albeit awkward smile. He didn't want to be rude, but he didn't want to lead her on either.
 
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s a m u e l

The last half of the game was spectacular. Harper excelled on the field, and as much as Samuel loved it when other kids in the teams scored because it meant they were all working together as a team, there was something especially fantastic whenever his little boy, who honestly was getting way too big to call little, scored.

The game ended with an insanely high score for Harper's team, and Samuel and Roman walked done to a while bunch of happy boys. Samuel congratulated Harper and gave him a big hug, which not all fifteen year old boys would want but Harper had always been mature enough not to push his dads away, Plus he kind of seemed too happy to care much anyways.

All the boys went to get change, Samuel exchanged a few words with the coach and then headed back with Roman to gather their things, "if he's not going out to do something with the team we should definitely let Harper decided what we're having for dinner to celebrate, maybe we should stop by the store and get some ice cream too? Unless we have some already, I feel like we bought some not all that long ago? Did you eat it all?" whatever parts of Samuel's head wasn't filled with ideas on how to celebrate was still very much focused on the game and Harper's accomplishments, so much so that he still didn't even notice the blatantly giggling soccer mums, not even when they were being all the more obvious.
 

lxngdon

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r o m a n
Roman was in disbelief. Had Samuel really not noticed the women that were checking him out? Usually he was right on top of it when things like that started happening, and most of the time, he got a little bit jealous. But today he hadn't, and it was strange.

But Roman sure as hell wasn't complaining.

Harper came up to them and asked if he could go out with his team for some celebratory ice cream. He was granted permission, and after he told them what he wanted for dinner, he scurried off and Roman and Samuel went to their car. Roman snatched the keys out of Samuel's hand and jumped into the driver's seat, playfully sticking his tongue out at his husband before starting the car.

He waited until they had gone to the store, picked out everything they needed for dinner and dessert, walked through the front door and put away all the groceries before he broached the subject on his mind. "Babe? You do realise that there were two soccer mums checking me out, right?"
 
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s a m u e l

They headed over too the store as planned to get everything for Harper's celebratory dinner. Slowly the game became less prevalent in Samuel's head, but now instead he was focused on making the best darn dinner Harper had ever tasted. Or well, focused on helping Roman making it, Samuel still couldn't really cook for his life. He did when he had to but it was usually just pasta or some pre-bought veggie nuggets that you just needed to fry or something. But he still very much intended on helping as much as possible.

So when they came home Samuel went straight to unpacking the groceries and was going to ask Roman when they should start on the food to have it ready in good time for dinner when Roman brought something Samuel, based on his track record with these kinds of things should have noticed. Apparently some of the soccer mums had been flirting with Roman. And usually anyone flirting with Roman caused Samuel to be quite possessive, and he would remember it at least for the day.

"...What?" Samuel asked, sounding genuinely surprised, but then he squinted his eyes to try to see if Roman maybe was joking or something, usually he could tell, but he had never really made up that people checked him out before so it would be weird, "Are you sure? I mean, I feel like I would have noticed, no offence to myself, but I'm kind of a jealous asshole sometimes,"
 

lxngdon

a mountain biking vampire witch from the future
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So Samuel genuinely hadn't noticed. Roman couldn't help but let out a little laugh -- it was honestly quite funny, to think that the man who used to be so ridiculously jealous whenever anyone spoke to his husband didn't even notice when two attractive women were flirting with him. Roman shook his head with amusement as he chopped some potatoes.

"Yeah -- they were, like, giggling and talking about me and shit, and one of them waved at me when we were headed back to get our things."
Roman shot Samuel another amused look. "How did you not notice? Most of the time it's like someone's set off an alarm in your head and suddenly you can't do anything but hold me and growl protectively."

That was an overstatement, of course, but in all seriousness Roman thought it was a little strange that Samuel had been so unobservant -- especially considering the fact that he was normally so territorial.
 
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Samuel let out a small laugh, Roman was obviously exaggerating a little, but he had to admit it wasn't far off from the truth and if Samuel couldn't laugh a little at his own flaws then he didn't know who he was. It had obviously been a problem in the beginning of their relationship, but Samuel had worked on it and Roman had learnt to realize that his possessiveness didn't stem from a distrust in him, but a distrust in other people, which in turn stemmed from Samuel's past. It was actually pretty sad why he was like this but, at this point it had honestly become more of a quirk than anything.

It wasn't often Samuel didn't notice though, in fact sometimes he'd notice before Roman did. So him not noticing was pretty funny ," I dunno, maybe I totally noticed them but I'm mature enough not to act on it?" Samuel suggested, but the amusement in his tone clearly revealed that that was far from the case.

Samuel walked up to his husband and wrapped his arms around him, gently so he wouldn't cause his husband to accidentally cut himself because that would be a disaster, in the way he totally would have if he had seen the flirting soccer mums, "Just kidding, I'm still a jealous ass, I just love soccer more than you," he said and gave his husband a little snuggle, contradicting his statement because he did love Roman more than soccer. But he was pretty sure that was the reason he hadn't noticed, why would he pay attention to some dumb flirting mums when their little boy was owning the soccer field.
 

lxngdon

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Roman gasped in horror when his husband joked about loving soccer more than him. "How dare you!" he said dramatically, setting down his knife and swivelling around in Samuel's arms to look at him with disgust. "The nerve! The audacity! This is an affront to my person, a violation of my most basic human rights, and I will never forgive you for it."

The taller Hemlock-Ortega husband tried to give Samuel a withering look, but he was in far too good of a mood to really stick to it, so he settled for giving the man a flick to the shoulder. "You disgust me."

Roman immediately contradicted his own statement by cupping Samuel's angular face with his hands and pulling him in for a deep and passionate kiss. The kiss was no different to one they would have shared in their early twenties -- just because they were both old and crusty now, that didn't mean that their love for one another had faded in any way.