He and Sebastian left the rest of the world behind before the sun had even risen the day after Christmas.
Cooper woke him at three thirty in the morning, shoved an already packed suitcase into his hands, and pushed him into a waiting town car. Blaine’s mind scrabbled between exhausted and alarmed until they pulled up to the palace’s private airstrip and Sebastian’s delighted grin glowed at him in the pre-dawn air.
“You could have just told me,” he laughed against Sebastian’s lips as they settled into their seats, hands slipping under the hems of each other’s shirts because they hadn’t seen each other in two weeks.
“And ruin all of Cooper’s fun?”
It had been a terrible idea to introduce the two of them, Blaine had always known. Not like it was a terrible idea to introduce him to everyone else in his life—Unlike his first boyfriend who claimed to be endlessly in love with Blaine until he had met Cooper and spent the remainder of their relationship using him as a way to get to his older brother—but because their questionably terrible decisions fed off each other in a way whose natural progression, of course, could only have led to a semi-abduction of Blaine.
Blaine had opened his mouth to protest but Sebastian had finally gotten his shirt unbuttoned.
“You’re mine,” he rumbled, "for the next five days," and promptly turned to the very important task of licking every inch of exposed skin he could find.
It had been a surprise to step off the plane to a world blanketed in snow. He had spent too long living in a city, where the snow might fall white and fluffy from the sky but quickly turned to a greyish melted mess.
Up in the mountains the snow fell from the sky in the same way but instead of immediately turning into sludge, it clung glittering to the trees and crunched delightfully under their feet as they walked (not trudged, like they did in the city) through it in the morning.
In the early mornings it was so cold it felt like their breaths were being snatched from their lungs, but it was worth the potential hypothermia to watch as the rest of the world came alive around them.
Sebastian hadn’t told him exactly where they were and, to be honest, he had never thought to ask, but as far as he could tell they were the only people around for miles. He certainly hadn’t seen any other indications of humanity since they left the tarmac behind. But on their first morning they had come across a herd of deer, a rabbit, and a fox, all of which judged them carefully from a distance before carrying on with their own silvarian pursuits.
Even Sebastian had admitted it was a magical experience, although he also spent a judicious amount of time reminding Blaine that Netflix could provide a very similar one but from the comfort of the sitting room.
“What if we said we missed our flight back home?” Blaine asked casually on their third night, snuggling close and burrowing his nose into the curve of Sebastian’s neck. Sebastian hissed and jerked away but didn’t stop Blaine’s further heat-seeking attempts. Between the two of them, he had always run the warmest and was used to being treated as Blaine’s personal furnace.
Despite the freezing temperatures, they had quickly decided that the rooftop balcony was their favorite place in the house. It felt magical up there, even more removed from reality than they already had been. On their first night, he and Sebastian dug out heaters from the cellar and dragged them up three flights on stairs to the balcony, setting them up in a semi-circle around the lounge area.
They had gone back out every night since, armed with an exceptionally fluffy blanket and a pot full of Irish coffee as they watched the sun fade from the sky and be replaced by stars. The night before, Blaine had sworn he saw a shooting star just before they went inside and he was on high alert that night, splitting his time equally between watching Sebastian and the heavens above, each as precious to him as the other.
Sebastian smiled in that rueful way he had, a slight curling up of the left side of his lips while biting the inside of his mouth. “It would be a better excuse if we were flying commercial and not a private jet.”
For over four hundred years, the first of the year heralded not just the new year, but the most important celebration of the country. Every January 1 the palace threw open its doors to foreign and local dignitaries alike while the rest of the people feted in the streets.
Anyone who knew them agreed it was all too fitting that Quinn and Sebastian were born on that day. They had come into the world more than two weeks ahead of schedule and much to the surprise of their mother who was in the middle of overseeing the finishing touches to the grand ballroom when the labor pains had started.
As small children they had refused to let their day be overlooked by some other celebration. In some combination of trickery and naivety they commandeered the day for themselves. It was still a matter of debate within the family whether they knew the annual party was for something else or, as precocious toddles, just assumed it was for them. But by the time they were four, the king and queen had been persuaded to roll the celebrations together.
Being allowed to stay up until midnight to ring in their birthday alongside the rest of their country had been the joy of their childhood, although the older it got the more and more it felt like a curse. Unwittingly, they had deprived their teen-aged and young adult selves of the ability to celebrate their birthdays in the raucous manner of their choice.
Sebastian had disappeared into the bathroom some forty minutes before to take the world’s longest shower. Normally Blaine would join him, but it didn’t feel quite right that night. Instead he wandered around the house that only a few days ago had been alien to him. Sebastian hadn’t told him yet when they were leaving, but he knew it was only a matter of hours.
In his search, he found a sock that had somehow ended up behind a bookshelf in the bedroom and a shirt that he could definitely remember throwing to the floor and, not long thereafter, kneeing aside so it ended up under a couch.
Faintly, he could hear Sebastian still singing in the shower. He didn’t sing every night but that night it sounded like he was putting on a full concert. Blaine could see it so clearly in his mind that it almost made his heart hurt.
He wanted to hold onto all those little moments for as long as he could. They were halfway through their final year of university and the threat of graduation hung ominously around them. He knew without a shadow of a doubt that he and Sebastian would always be in each other’s lives, but he also knew that everything they had spent the last six years being would end once they graduated.
He wasn’t selfish enough to try to push for more, but he was selfish enough to hold on to what they had as long as he could.
Their bags were packed and Sebastian was checking his phone again to confirm when they were being picked up. Every new buzz of it set Blaine a little more on edge and he wished they would just leave for the damn airport already.
Sebastian picked up his phone again, this time to talk to someone on the other end. “What?” he snapped. Followed by a terse “Okay.” “Okay.” “Fine.” “Thanks.” and finally “You too.” He hung up and let out an aggravated sigh, his mouth twisting up into a grimace.
Sebastian looked out the window. “No,” he said slowly and in the way that normally indicated that something was very wrong.
Blaine followed his gaze out the window and tried not to be disappointed that the skies were so clear. He knew Sebastian had to be back in time for the start of the ball, but he couldn’t help but want an extra day with just him.
“That was Quinn.” Sebastian scowled. “She and Robert need the jet tonight to get back from the islands. They just so happened to forget that I’d need it too.”
“What does that mean… for us?”
“That we have another day here. A little more, actually. We’re being picked up early on the first.”
“That means you’ll miss your party.”
“Robbie says he’ll deal with mother.” Sebastian shrugged, looking suddenly flustered and shy before adding, “I have to say I don’t really mind.”
“No?” Blaine couldn’t hide his smile any longer.
It had taken very little effort to get Sebastian to help him drag the heaters back upstairs to their rooftop. It had felt like a given from the moment he had realized that they would be staying that they would spend the better part of the rest of their time up there. And they had, except for the nap they had taken around 4 so that they could stay up through the night until their flight left.
Blaine glanced at his watch, noting that it was fifteen minutes to midnight already. “You know, we’ve never been together on your birthday.”
It wasn’t entirely true. He had attended three of the birthday/New Year’s balls in the time that he had known Sebastian but it didn’t feel like it counted when there were 500 people between them.
“I guess we haven’t,” Sebastian agreed. Under the blanket, his hand drifted lower.
“I’m sorry,” Blaine said in three stuttering breaths, “if this birthday isn’t as fancy as what you’re used to.”
Sebastian grinned wickedly. “The attire is significantly more relaxed than what I’m accustomed to but I’m sure we can find some way to compensate for that.”
“I can always go put on my tuxedo, if that, ah, makes you feel more, ah, at home.”
Sebastian’s hand froze and he let out that quiet little noise that Blaine loved being able to make him make.
“I am,” he said apologetically. “But I’ll definitely make that up to you once we get home.”
“Happy Birthday to you,” Blaine sang, half sleepily and half seductively.
Sebastian grinned and kissed him, as though they hadn’t spent the last hour having sex under the stars. “Happy New Year.”
“You remembered today is about more than just you?” Blaine feigned a look of surprise. “I am proud.”
Sebastian kissed him again fiercely, shutting him up more effectively than any words would. They kissed for another couple minutes before Sebastian’s phone buzzed and he drew back to look at it with a frown.
Blaine didn’t intentionally look but he couldn’t help but see Quinn’s name on the screen. He looked away, feeling guilty. Not only had he intruded, however accidentally, on Sebastian’s privacy, he had also had him to himself all evening. He knew it was the first time in their lives the twins had been apart on their birthday and he had been too wrapped up in his own delight to even think about what it might mean to them.
“Any resolutions?” Sebastian’s elbow gently nudged his side, interrupting his thoughts. “That’s something people like you do, isn’t it?”
“Mmm,” he agreed absently. “Oh, you know me,” he laughed lightly, “work harder, be better. Read more.”
His real resolution was something he couldn’t share—to fill his life with as many moments like they had just had as possible. Not the sex, although he wouldn’t say no to more of that, but feeling deeply personal connections to the people around him and truly being in the moment.
Leaving on the 1st didn’t feel the same as it had when he thought he’d be leaving on the 30th. They still weren’t ready and as the car drove away, they both looked back at their little house and sighed. But it wasn’t the same sadness as it had been the day before.
By the time they had taken off, Blaine was even looking forward to the rest of the day. Given the anticipated time of their arrival, Sebastian’s mother had extended an invitation to Blaine to the palace’s New Year’s Day brunch. It would be his first time attending it and, even though it had clearly been nothing more than a courtesy invite, he was still excited to be going.
The palace grounds were just becoming visible on the horizon when Sebastian turned to him, snaking his arm around his shoulders and rubbing shyly at his neck.
“This was good?”
Blaine couldn’t tell if it was a statement that turned into a question or a question that he had tried to force into a statement. He loved it though. It was something they had in common, they both spent so much time convincing the world they were composed and controlled. Sebastian made him flustered on a daily basis but it was much rarer that Sebastian showed that Blaine had the same effect on him. He insisted that it happened all the time, he just had years of Royal Training behind him to keep him in check.
“It was perfect.”