birdhousesoul: Anders is healing someone and his hands are glowy! (healing)
[personal profile] birdhousesoul posting in [community profile] faemused


Anders has some idea Hawke and Malcolm will be in the village today, only he's not sure when. This place doesn't run on clocks. Things happen when they happen. In the meantime, he goes about his business. Unless anyone has a surprise woodchopping accident, he ought to have today to himself for a change, with no one in the village environs known to be sick or at the point of giving birth. It's a day for doing chores that take more time.

The planks of the clinic floor are in need of scrubbing, the hearth needs a good sweeping out, and after accomplishing both these tasks, Anders feels he himself is in need of scrubbing. This is ordinarily accomplished with a bucket of water and a rough cloth. He's had a square wooden tub made for soaking in, one he keeps in the clinic with a privacy screen shielding it from the main room, but he seldom gets to use it himself; it's more for allowing people to soak things that need soaking, swellings or cysts or pulled muscles. Today he has time to fill it.

He doesn't get into the bath until after he's already scrubbed clean, though, with said bucket-and-cloth method. In a place where it takes considerable effort to collect and heat the water for a bath, you make good use of that bath once you've got it. You don't pollute the water unnecessarily. It can be used by more than one person, and after that, the water can be used for laundry. He misses the station showers, sometimes. He misses the hippie laundry. Anders takes his time sitting in the water and absorbing its heat, every once in a while idly using a little fire magic to re-warm it, secure in the knowledge that he's not going to be needing an untouched mana pool for anything soon.

By the time he hears the door creaking to signal Hawke's arrival (and Malcolm making a curious noise in answer to that creak), Anders has only just hauled himself out of the tub and into a fresh pair of pants. He's drying his hair with a somewhat ragged linen towel as he steps out from behind the screen. "All right," he says, "your turn." And smiles, as it ought to be a pleasant surprise. They didn't plan any bath day. "Give him here." Malcolm's small enough yet that a basin suffices to wash him, and he's far too small to put in a bathtub.

Date: 2012-02-05 12:55 pm (UTC)
questionablewit: (smile 2)
From: [personal profile] questionablewit
The sight takes Hawke by surprise before the invitation can. She and Anders are on comfortable enough terms lately, casual, but to see him barechested and with loose, wet hair framing his face--smiling--takes her breath, and it shows, for a fleeting moment of hunger and wistfulness.

But she hasn't asked or offered anything on that level since he first arrived. The pacing here is all his, only what he can give. The way she left was a betrayal, she knew even as she did it, and she couldn't be surprised when he learned the truth that it put a barrier between them beyond her ability to tear down. She hasn't pushed, won't. What matters is Malcolm.

Doesn't stop her from wanting, however, and it's there so very clearly in her eyes for that moment.

Then the words sink in, and she gets herself under control, automatically reaching to undo the swaddling-sling she fashioned for carrying Malcolm when she needs to take him places. He's getting heavier as he grows, and carrying him that way puts strain on her back; once in a while she's asked Anders for the loan of his bathtub and skill with heating water for that reason alone. Like him, she almost always makes do with a bucket and a towel. The tub she has at the mountain hut is big enough to crouch in, but not to sit in, and heating enough water for it is an endeavor that takes hours. Actually soaking is a rare delight.

So Hawke smiles with very real gratitude as she hands Malcolm to Anders--Malcolm makes a quiet, bemused sound, he's half-asleep after being carried around for a while--and rolls her shoulders back, getting used to the sudden lack of baby-weight. She had a few more things to do, but nothing urgent, and a bath is too good a treat to be missed. "Now that's what I call perfect timing. Sure you don't mind?" He did offer, granted, but she's mindful of courtesy nowadays. This is his home, after all, and he might have other uses for all that water. She'll need to scrub off before she gets in the tub herself.

Date: 2012-02-05 04:55 pm (UTC)
questionablewit: (smile)
From: [personal profile] questionablewit
Hawke chuckles. "I don't think I want to know what me-flavored soup would taste like," she says as she walks behind the screen, looking ruefully down at her clothes as she does so. She enjoys doing domestic things with her own hands, including cleaning her clothes, which means she can be happily annoyed by the state of them. "Or what it might nourish. Fleas, maybe."

Once behind the screen she strips off her clothes, folding them and placing them in a small pile on the floor. One cloth gets dipped into the tub, and she starts scrubbing at her skin, squeezing and rinsing off the cloth in the bucket of water, because she's not getting in that bath until she's wearing significantly less dirt and sweat. She takes a moment to smell the soap before making use of it, inhaling the clean, herbal scent and appreciating it.

"Are you sure this isn't a setup for soup?" She calls quietly, mindful of Malcolm, who can't be asleep quite yet. She can hear Anders murmuring to him in the background, low enough that she can't make out words, though knowing Anders and Malcolm it's a running narrative of near-nonsense and stream-of-thought. "Marian Hawke, garnished with rosemary, with some good brown bread on the side?"

Once clean, which she accomplishes as quickly as possible, she steps into the small tub, settling in with an unconscious sigh. The water's not hot, but it is warm, and feels wonderful on her scrubbed skin. She sinks down as far as she can go, until her head is resting on the edge and her knees are hiked up above the water.
Edited Date: 2012-02-05 04:56 pm (UTC)

Date: 2012-02-05 05:51 pm (UTC)
questionablewit: (Default)
From: [personal profile] questionablewit
Hawke will never complain about being given bread. She can't bake either, and no small part of the results of her trapping work is traded for staples like bread, milk and butter, the vegetables she can't grow on her own in her meagre attempt at a garden, and so on. She has credit set up with the local general store (such as it is), and a few other places; but any help Anders offers her, she accepts.

Anders attempting to mother her as well as Malcolm, that she once in a while complains about, to absolutely no effect. Washing her hair, however, would not count as mothering. Probably. It might, to his mind.

Regardless, she won't complain, and tilts her head to look back at the screen and Anders as she answers. "Something else? What is it? And please do." She might regret it later on tonight when she's alone and thinking of other things she'd like those hands to do, but Anders' scalprubs, like his backrubs (and bread, and baths), are too good to refuse. And a certain amount of scalprubbing is inevitable in hairwashing.

She doesn't comment on Ser Malcolm. He knights everything, does Anders. She sometimes wonders how Teo escaped a similar title.
Edited Date: 2012-02-05 05:53 pm (UTC)

Date: 2012-02-05 06:59 pm (UTC)
questionablewit: (soft)
From: [personal profile] questionablewit
"Have to be the picture of health, with you around," Hawke says absently, mind clearly elsewhere. She keeps a close watch out for parasites; they're more of a hazard for her than they would be for others, given all the work she does with skinning wild animals and tanning their hides. "I don't dare be anything else. So no fleas, or ticks, or any other nasty bedfellows. But I bet they'd still find me tasty if they were around, especially now that I'll smell like rosemary, and who could blame them?"

The combination of the warmer water, the clean smell, and the fingers rubbing into her scalp makes her want to purr, and she sighs quietly as she relaxes, leaning back a bit into his hands. "I will do anything you ask if you don't stop, you know. Even eat kale whenever you ask from now on, without protest." It's not that she dislikes kale; it's fine, as green leafy things go. But he comes across so much of it. Even so. "Whatever it takes to keep you doing that, because it feels wonderful." Her voice is dreamy and content, her eyes lidded.
Edited Date: 2012-02-05 08:31 pm (UTC)

Date: 2012-02-05 10:59 pm (UTC)
questionablewit: (Default)
From: [personal profile] questionablewit
Hawke makes a small sound of protest as his hands pause, which fades into another happy sigh when he continues. "Mm, no, spinach is fine. So long as it's cut up small." No, she doesn't notice (or rather, doesn't interpret) the hesitation on Anders' part; she's too lost in scalprub bliss. However, she does lean further back as she continues to relax. By now, Anders has a view, whether he wanted one or not. "Any green leafy vegetables of your choice. To go with the Marian soup and the bread." There's a logical inconsistancy in there, but she doesn't care; it's just idle chatter to keep the conversation going, and thus (hopefully) his hands working at her scalp.

Date: 2012-02-06 09:28 pm (UTC)
questionablewit: (soft)
From: [personal profile] questionablewit
"Says who? I'm the mighty Hawke, I can do anything. Including eat myself as soup, if I want." It says a good deal for how much Hawke's recovered over the past two years that she can make such a joke, and do so idly, without bitterness.

But she obeys, sitting and tilting as requested. The brush of his bare skin on hers is unexpected, and the heat of it lingers after he moves away. She has to bite her lip to keep from reacting to the sudden presence and absence of his touch, and suddenly is very, very aware of the fact that she's not wearing anything, and Anders is wearing little more. Her breathing becomes shallower, quicker, for all that she tries not to respond outwardly. "Another round of soaping, or rinsing?" she asks, as lightly as she can manage.

Date: 2012-02-07 11:27 pm (UTC)
questionablewit: (listening)
From: [personal profile] questionablewit
This is familiar, an echo back to the White Room, long ago now, when he gave her a backrub that gradually metamorphosed into something else. I never could resist the urge to try my luck, he'd said. Even when it means pushing my luck.

Something they have in common, she and Anders. And not the only thing at this moment, given the way his fingers slide along areas that really don't need shampooing even if they are in the near vicinity of her hair, the way his breathing's changed to something harsh and ragged. She's painfully aware of him sitting behind her, the heat radiating from his chest and arms and hands.

Malcolm's asleep. Teo's by the front door and would warn if anyone approached. If Anders was having a bath himself, he doesn't expect anyone else. It's as private a time as they ever are granted.

It's very, very hard for Hawke not to push her luck. Her arms have wrapped around her knees during all this, and she locks her hands together, mostly to keep herself from doing something stupid with them. Like capturing his hands and moving them to the places she'd rather they were caressing.

But she can't stop her breath from catching when he touches the shell of her ear. Or that spot on the side of her neck, the one that used to make her moan if he used his mouth on it. Even Hawke doesn't have that much self-restraint, especially not in these conditions.

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Date: 2012-02-25 12:45 pm (UTC)
questionablewit: (smile 2)
From: [personal profile] questionablewit
Hawke lets out another low, breathless chuckle. "Yes," she agrees. She can't quite make herself move yet. If when she does get up there's an imprint of her body left in the mattress behind her, she wouldn't be surprised.

They lie there in silence for another few moments, breathing and recovering and letting their bodies cool, before she speaks again. The edge of laughter that's been present in her voice ever since he first kissed her neck is still very much evident. "No interruptions. Looks like you'll get to be the one to wash the baby." She turns her head to grin at him.

Date: 2012-02-26 06:28 pm (UTC)
questionablewit: (half-smile)
From: [personal profile] questionablewit
"I wouldn't put it past Teo," Hawke concedes. "He's always been too smart for anyone's good, especially mine." She rolls on her side to rest her head on Anders' shoulder. Hopefully it's not too familiar or presumptuous a move; she knows that this act hasn't given her blanket permission for everything, though she hopes it's lowered some of the boundaries between them. "But Malcolm doesn't know how to play cards, unless you or Teo have been teaching him, in which case I think I object to our son learning to gamble before he even has teeth."

Date: 2012-02-26 06:59 pm (UTC)
questionablewit: (Default)
From: [personal profile] questionablewit
"Just at the moment you're in bed with a beautiful naked woman," Hawke points out, snuggling against him. "Your luck can't be that bad, given those circumstances. A conspiracy to what, exactly?"

Date: 2012-02-26 07:38 pm (UTC)
questionablewit: (soft)
From: [personal profile] questionablewit
Hawke laughs quietly. She's doing that a lot this afternoon. "Not to mention that if we're distracted, they're free to get up to all sorts of mischief? Maker help us." Hawke leans up on an elbow so she can kiss Anders' nose. "No insulting your nose, incidently. I'm very fond of that nose, on your face and his."

From nose to mouth is not a long distance, so she kisses him there as well. Their second kiss in a year and a half, and if it's less passionate it's no less heartfelt. No less wanted. "You think this will make things less complicated, then?" It's hard not to sound hopeful, and she doesn't try.

Date: 2012-02-26 08:23 pm (UTC)
questionablewit: (z Anders - silhouette)
From: [personal profile] questionablewit
Hawke takes another, slower kiss and returns to her previous position of resting on Anders' chest and shoulder before she answers. "I think it will make some things more complicated and some things less complicated. But I also can't think of anything I want more than this." One hand splays on his chest. "Our child asleep nearby, and your arms around me, and Teo guarding the door. If there's a better life than this out there, I can't imagine what it is."

Date: 2012-02-26 09:17 pm (UTC)
questionablewit: (lips)
From: [personal profile] questionablewit
"More complicated for a number of reasons. Because you live in the village and I live in the mountains, and nights are already too long; they'll be even longer with this as a possiblity instead of something I tell myself I can't have. More complicated because I don't know what permissions you'll allow me, because it upsets the balance we've managed to forge over the past months." She takes a long breath. "More complicated, because it raises the questions we've been so careful not to ask. I know you can't forgive me, Anders. I don't ask that you do. But can you live around that? Can you love me despite that?"

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