Janus gasped for air as his hands were met with the cool concrete of his doorstep. His tears splattered to the ground, the stains being a stark reminder of what he had done.
‘No. Breaking down in front of your house is not an option.’ He needed to seclude himself. Janus hauled himself back up while clutching the door handle, his other shaking hand grasping his keys.
His vision was blurry, but he successfully managed to fumble with his keys enough to somehow unlock his front door.
He couldn’t think.
He couldn’t breathe.
This was all his fault.
He had hurt the only person who had believed in him.
He had hurt the only person he loved .
The last thing he saw was his bathroom floor before he saw nothing but black.
Janus had hated himself. He hated what he could do. It was why he needed to distance himself from everyone. Everyone in his life, any person he became remotely close to, pushed away for their own good. It helped that he had no family. But the hardest part of pushing people away was the looks on their faces. The pained expressions on friends who would never understand why Janus wouldn’t let them into his life. They must never understand. He knew he was better off dead, for the world would be relieved of his vileness.
It was Roman Prince who changed his mind.
They started out as co-workers at a local library. One day Roman caught Janus sobbing his eyes out in the back bathroom. He had gently asked what was wrong.
Janus ended up spilling everything to the poor man.
How he could suck the very life out of a human being when he got angry, how he pushed everyone out of his life for their own safety, and how he never had any real friends.
Roman had listened.
Roman had held him.
And Roman stayed.
Kind, strong, clever Roman had welcomed Janus into his life, regardless of the risks. Roman who held Janus while he sobbed and yelled how he hated himself. Roman who would spend the longest nights comforting him and convincing him of the good inside him that he kept denying.
And to top it all off?
Janus was falling in love with him.
Janus had pleaded, begged Roman to get rid of him while they still had time. It broke Janus’s heart. But despite everything, the beautiful man kept trying.
Things had actually been getting better. For the first time in his life, Janus was feeling a sense of control over his despicable gift, all thanks to Roman.
Roman was his new will to live.
He remembers their practice clearly. They had spent countless hours together, training Janus’s mind to keep the dark power out, out, out.
Away, away, away.
Gone, gone, gone.
Focus on Roman, focus on Roman, focus on Roman.
Roman, Roman, Roman.
“Janus! Janus! Janus!”
Janus was brought back into consciousness by a strong, nervous voice. He must have passed out from the stress after-
Everything came flooding back into his memory.
Roman’s abusive ex-boyfriend had left one hell of a threat note on his doorstep. Janus tried to keep his anger in. Roman had tried to help.
But the power was too much.
Whenever he had outbursts, it usually affected the person who was closest to him.
And the only person that was in sight was Roman.
The black magic had shot out of his fingertips and went straight for the man, who cried out in pain upon impact.
Janus had never been able to stop the power as fast as he did that day. But Roman was still hurt, and Janus was too dangerous. He had to run away. He had to keep Roman safe.
Roman kept calling his name from outside his bathroom.
ROMAN WAS OK.
“Are you in there? Are you ok? I- I need you to be ok- I need to know you’re ok!”
So very Roman to be worrying about Janus after he had just suffered indescribable pain. Janus didn’t deserve him.
“I’m fine, I’m in here, but-“
The door was promptly yanked open at his response and Roman entered the small bathroom, a look of relief on his face. Janus scrambled away in fear of hurting him again.
“Thank Julie Andrews! Janus, please don’t blame yourself for what happened, it’s not your fault, I definitely should have-“
“Roman, please! You have to get far away from me, you can’t be here!”
Roman approached Janus and knelt in front of the man. He grasped his hands, tears blooming in both their eyes.
“I’m not leaving you! It was just a little mistake, it won’t happen again!”
“Roman, you’ll just get hurt, I’m way too dangerous! I have to protect you, I can’t control it-“
“I made my decision when you told me about this. I’m staying because-“
“You don’t understand! I can’t be trusted! I won’t-“
“NO! Janus, YOU don’t understand! I love you!!”
His heart practically exploded in his chest.
Roman laughed sadly at Janus’s now stiff body. “I won’t ask for anything from you. Ever. All I want is for you to feel worthy of love. I want you to be happy. So please let me help you. It comes with risks, I know, but I knew that going in and-“
Roman’s voice hitched as he saw Janus was leaning in ever so slightly, a silent question.
“You, I…” Roman sputtered.
“You’re such an idiot.”
Janus closed the distance. Their lips met, the kiss being perfectly tender and gentle. Janus didn’t feel fireworks in his chest, and the butterflies had long gone a while into the kiss. It was just Roman. They molded together perfectly, as if they had been kissing their whole lives. As if it were meant to be.
And all of a sudden, Janus had a realization.
His dark powers were gone, never to be seen again.
Gone, gone, gone.
And all that was left?
Roman, Roman, Roman.