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The boar is wearing Felix’s pelt when they find him at the monastery. Sometime in the last five years, he attached it to a grand blue cloak that nearly drags on the floor. The cloak is filthy, stained with dirt and blood, but Felix’s pelt is unblemished. A selkie’s pelt can withstand injury to great lengths but they’re hardly resistant to soiling. The only conclusion Felix can draw from seeing the miraculous cleanliness of his pelt is that the boar has been caring for it.

Ridiculous. Why would he? Felix assumed his pelt was lost or destroyed as Cornelia isn’t the type to pass on the chance to control him with it. For the past five years, Felix has been resigned to permanently missing a part of himself, just like his father. He made his peace with it. If anything, he wishes his pelt was destroyed rather than having to see it on that beast as he paces the monastery muttering to men long dead. Unless he dies or abdicates, that wretched creature’s claim on his pelt last as long as Felix lives. Would Felix’s father bury it with him if he passed or would his pelt join Glenn’s to be locked in his study?

The thought of his pelt with Glenn’s makes him shake with rage. He feels the urge to rip it off from the boar’s shoulders.

It doesn’t belong to you! Felix wants to shout at him. Give it back!

Only the Fraldarius heir is forced to give their pelt to House Blaiddyd. When Glenn was alive it was his pelt that adorned the boar’s shoulders. Felix’s pelt was his own and he was free to transform as he wished. He spent every summer switching between forms, hiding in the sea whenever he was overwhelmed by his emotions. The boar swam with him, Glenn’s pelt left behind somewhere. At the castle maybe, or locked up in the boar’s trunk. It doesn’t matter. Glenn’s pelt might have belonged to the boar but it was Felix’s pelt he called beautiful—Felix’s pelt he brushed with careful fingers.

Felix scowls. Why is he remembering such things? Dimitri died in Duscur. The corpse before him is borrowing his friend’s face, nothing more. Felix must bury the part of him that finds meaning in the boar’s actions. If Felix’s pelt is clean it’s merely because the boar knows the pelt’s value as a tool for survival. A selkie pelt is strong enough to take a hit meaning the difference between life and death. It provides protection against the elements and offers more warmth than anything man-made. Considering the difficulties of life on the run, the boar would be a fool to let it go to ruin.

Obviously, the boar takes care of Felix’s pelt out of utility, not sentimentality. Besides, it doesn’t matter how carefully he preserves it: keeping it at all is a cruelty Felix can’t allow himself to grow numb to.

_____

 

Dimitri doesn’t ask for Felix’s pelt after Glenn’s death despite Felix’s ascension to heir of House Fraldarius. Felix brings it to him nonetheless. His father approves of the gesture, choosing to believe Felix gives up his pelt out of duty. The old man understands nothing of Felix’s heart. Duty can’t compel Felix to give away a part of himself.

Dimitri is still in recovery when Felix brings him his pelt. Bandages cover his arms and legs, his chest and back, but his face is without a single scar. Nonetheless, Felix is taken aback by Dimitri’s vacant stare when he turns to him.

“Felix.” Dimitri’s eyes are lifeless as he forces himself to smile. The sight of it makes Felix feel sick.

“Take it,” Felix says as hands over his pelt.

“No. It’s yours. I won’t take it from you.” Dimitri pushes the pelt away.

“Is that an order?”

His words strike a nerve. Dimitri’s vacant stare ceases. He looks instead as if Felix has struck him—such is the shock and horror in his eyes.

“No, no. I would never order you to do anything.” He looks as if he may cry.

“Then take it. I want you to have it.”

Dimitri bites his lip and nods. He wraps Felix’s pelt around his shoulders and Felix feels oddly at ease despite the tension between them. Seeing his pelt on Dimitri feels right. It’s not a symbol of duty, but a symbol of trust.

_____

 

Dimitri cuts through his enemies with a manic glee. Blood soaks his armor, soaks Felix’s pelt. Soldiers flee when they see him rip apart their comrades like paper dolls but it doesn’t matter: Dimitri hunts them like animals, his lance spearing them like meat on a skewer. Worse than the gore of it is the pleasure he seems to take from it. His expression as he kills chills Felix to the bone.

Still, Felix deludes himself.

“Dimitri, stop! They’re retreating.” He stands in front of Dimitri, his sword unsheathed but not pointing at him. Felix is still in denial.

“Out of my way.”

“No.” Felix lifts his sword—an act of treason if he was anyone else. But he isn’t anyone else. He can’t harm Dimitri, even if he wants to.

“I command you to move aside.”

There’s no fighting a command from Dimitri. The magic of his pelt is with Dimitri; he is the one in control. Felix is helpless to stop his legs from moving—a passenger in his own body. The act is a violation of the highest order.

Dimitri is gone by the time Felix returns to himself. He wants to scream and curse Dimitri but instead he bends over to be sick.

I would never order you to do anything.

Liar, Felix thinks as he empties his guts onto the ground.

_____

 

The boar—no, Dimitri has been acting strangely. Almost as if he is avoiding Felix. They’ve taken Fhirdiad back from that witch Cornelia’s clutches. The next phase of the war will take them out of Faerghus and into the Alliance. His old man is dead, having given his life to protect Dimitri. A few months earlier Felix might have been angry about it. Dying for a wild boar—how pathetic. But he isn’t angry now.

Dimitri has stopped listening to the dead. He no longer desires to rush to Enbarr for the Emperor’s head. His bloodlust remains in battle but he doesn’t chase after retreating soldiers. He smiles sometimes, not at Felix but at the professor, at Dedue, at Mercedes, and at the children that come up to him. He lets them grab at his cloak—the cloak Felix’s pelt is attached to— and ruffles their hair while wearing a kind smile.

The old man would have been glad to see how far Dimitri has come.

Felix swings his practice sword in quick movements. He doesn’t have to think about which way to turn, where to step, or how to swing his arm. He simply moves—his training routine is so familiar to him he can just clear his mind and not have to think about anything.

The doors to the training grounds swing open just as he pirouettes to face them, his sword pointing at the intruder.

It’s Dimitri, of course. This late at night no one but Felix or Dimitri would enter the training grounds.

Dimitri looks as if he wants to flee. He stands frozen at the door and stares at the point of Felix’s sword. Felix’s pelt, for once, is missing.

“Ah, Felix.” He pauses as if waiting for Felix to reply. Felix does not. “I apologize for the intrusion. I will train at the Knight’s Hall.” He turns to make a hasty retreat.

Felix angers. Dimitri is avoiding him. For what purpose?

“Spar with me,” he demands.

Dimitri blinks in confusion. “Pardon?”

“I won’t repeat myself.” He tosses a training lance at Dimitri’s general direction, satisfied that Dimitri must have caught it when it doesn’t clang on the ground.

Fighting Dimitri is exhilarating. He is an opponent that knows Felix’s every trick, as Felix knows his. Felix can’t let his guard down for a moment or Dimitri will seize upon his weakness. His inhuman strength is an advantage he is unafraid to exploit and his experience rivals any knight’s. Dimitri is a worthy opponent for Felix to test his strength against.

Felix twists out of reach from Dimitri’s lance, his feet light and free. He swings his sword at where Dimitri leaves himself vulnerable but for all his size, Dimitri is fast when he wants to be. The longer the fight goes on, the worse it is for Felix. He doesn’t have Dimitri’s frightening stamina and is at an extra disadvantage because of the training he did before Dimitri showed up.

Still, he is in no hurry for their match to end regardless of the outcome. He feels alive in a way he hasn’t felt since he last transformed. Dimitri was there. They swam together, Dimitri held onto him as he cut through the water.

Felix’s concentration slips. Dimitri takes the opening and disarms him before he can waste another second aching for a time long past.

Dimitri’s victory smile is smug and satisfied, nothing like the smile he wears around anyone else. He looks younger from the playfulness of it.

“Thank you for the excellent match, Felix. You truly know your way with a sword.”

The aching won’t go away. Felix feels the itch to transform and it sends a wave of frustration through him that he can’t. Not until he is released from his bondage when Dimitri’s heir replaces him and the next Fraldarius takes his place. If he is lucky, Dimitri will be alive when it happens. If he isn’t—

He’ll never get to be all of himself with Dimitri again.

Dimitri hastily hangs his training lance on the weapons rack, oblivious to the way Felix is falling apart. With their match over, Dimitri is trying to run away again. He refuses to look in Felix’s direction.

“You’re avoiding me,” Felix accuses, fed up with Dimitri’s nonsense.

“Ah? I apologize. I merely thought with how late it was—“

“Stop that. I’m not just talking about today, and you know it.”

Dimitri sighs and brushes his hand where Felix’s pelt would normally rest on his shoulders. “I thought it would be best to give you space after all that has happened.”

“What, you mean my father dying for you?”

Dimitri takes a sharp breath before replying. “Yes, well, that—among everything else.”

“Spit out what you mean. I’m not letting you leave until you do. You don’t have my pelt on today to make me stand aside.”

Dimitri has the audacity to look hurt, as if he is the one that was betrayed by his dearest friend.

“Why did you give me your pelt, Felix? I didn’t ask for it. You were under no obligation to, no matter what Rodrigue might have said to you.”

“You really think I gave it to you because of my old man?” Felix fumes.

“I don’t know why you gave it to me, that’s why I’m asking.”

“I gave it to you because I wanted you to have it. Why is this so difficult for everyone to understand? You, my old man—stop making assumptions about my decisions.” Felix paces in irritation.

“I don’t deserve to have it.”

Felix stops and stares at him. “Shut up. You’re the worst judge of what you deserve.”

Dimitri’s eye widens. “Heh, you’re probably right.”

“Stop avoiding me out of some misplaced sense of guilt.” He feels more winded by this conversation than their fight. “My father’s decision to protect you was his own. Make up for it by winning this war. Become a king worth following.”

“I hope I can live up to your expectations.” He sounds as if he means it.

“You can, Dimitri. I know it.”

_____

 

Unifying and rebuilding three countries in the aftermath of a devastating war is, to say the least, difficult work. Felix can command armies and train soldiers but that knowledge is hardly helpful for cobbling together a working form of government. In those early months, he laments his father’s passing for an entirely different reason than usual.

Another challenge he grapples with after the war is Dimitri’s habit of overworking himself. It takes the combined efforts of Felix, Dedue, and the new Archbishop to prevent Dimitri from working himself to death. Dimitri throws himself wholeheartedly into the rebuilding efforts which Felix admires but the problem is Dimitri has a tendency to think every project, every request, and every complaint thrown his way is important when they’re simply not. Felix tells him this repeatedly, sometimes kindly and sometimes during full-blown screaming matches that help no one, until finally the lesson sticks after a particularly foolish string of choices incapacitate Dimitri in his chambers for days.

As much as he wants to, Dimitri can’t do everything and accepting his limitations makes him a better king. He still struggles some days, but Felix and Dedue are there for him. They make him take breaks and remind him to ask for help. Felix starts to recognize when Dimitri is having trouble sleeping and takes it upon himself to spar with Dimitri until he is so exhausted sleep is impossible for him to avoid. Little by little, Dimitri gets better at taking care of himself and Felix worries less.

As the chaos of rebuilding settles down, Felix’s duties as Dimitri’s advisor and as Duke Fraldarius become routine. Peace should make Felix happy. And it does in some ways. His friends are thriving which matters more to Felix than he lets on. He might pretend to be sick of weddings when asked but in truth they are moments of pure joy amidst his growing restlessness.

Felix throws himself into training to calm down but his efforts are fruitless. He struggles to complete his duties, finds himself walking out of important meetings because he feels as if he will burst out of his skin if he spends another minute indoors. He spends long hours wandering the castle grounds and city instead of helping Dimitri with his workload as he should. He is angry at himself for it, knows his behavior is erratic but he doesn’t know how to fix it. He aches for some unknown thing.

Dimitri worries for him, though he doesn’t say it. Nonetheless, it’s obvious by the way he frets over Felix. He invites Felix to the opera, joins him in his restless wanderings, allows Felix to take out his pent up energy on him on the training grounds. He is trying, and Felix appreciates it when before he might have pushed him away, but the only thing Dimitri manages to achieve is now they’re both miserable instead of just Felix. The opposite of what Felix wants.

As the days pass and Felix’s mood refuses to improve, he starts to fear he might spend the rest of his life like this. Incomplete and restless, slacking on his duties. Becoming a burden to the person he wants to help. He hates it.

Summer comes and Felix can no longer put off returning to Fraldarius. He has been avoiding returning since his last visit consisted of him sitting on a snowy beach and staring unproductively at the sea for hours on end.

On the morning of his departure, as he directs his men, Dimitri interrupts his instructions to hand him a tightly wrapped package.

“What’s this?” Felix dismisses his men to finish the rest of the preparations on their own.

“A gift, if you’ll accept it. But don’t open it until you arrive.”

“Dimitri, you shouldn’t waste money buying me things.” The package, Felix notes, isn’t very heavy despite its size.

“Not a single coin was spent. Well, except for the packaging.”

Great, it’s likely some precious royal heirloom worth more than what most people make in their lifetime then. That makes Felix feel so much better.

“It’s not my birthday.” He tries to return the dubious gift but Dimitri sidesteps him.

“Must you always be so stubborn? Is it really so strange that I want to give you something?” Dimitri sets a pleading eye upon him. Felix hates it when he does that because he is weak to resist whatever it is Dimitri wants of him.

“Hmph. Fine then.” If Dimitri wants to give away priceless Blaiddyd treasures, then so be it.

“Thank you, Felix. I hope you know how much I appreciate your company. Not just as an advisor, but as my oldest friend. I’ll—I’ll miss you dearly.” He fidgets with his sleeve. The weather is too warm for his usual cloak; he looks vulnerable without it.

“What are you getting sentimental on me for, boar?” The nicknames lacks any of its past sharpness. “It’s just a few weeks. You’ll hardly notice I’m gone.”

“I will certainly be aware of your absence, Felix. The length of time is irrelevant.”

“Ugh, why are you so—“ Embarrassing. Sincere. Felix grits his teeth. “I can’t stay, if that’s what you’re getting at. I have business to attend to.”

“I’m not asking you to stay,” Dimitri clarifies, annoyance creeping into his voice. “Can you please just stop being difficult for once and accept that I’ll miss you? You’re giving me a headache.”

Felix rolls his eyes at Dimitri’s dramatics. “Fine.”

He puts the package with his things in the carriage and tries to ignore the way Dimitri watches him as if he’s trying to memorize the shape of him. Dimitri must be more worried for him than he realized.

“Take care of yourself, Dimitri,” he says when it’s time to take off.

“I’ll try.”

_____

 

Mountains of paperwork greet Felix when he arrives at his family’s estate. He ignores it all to sit in the sand and stare at the waves.

His men leave him alone. There aren’t many selkie folk left in Fódlan, but of those there are most live in Fraldarius. Some of his men are of his ilk, while others simply have enough interaction with selkie folk to understand the sea’s pull on them.

He tried once to swim in the ocean after giving away his pelt to Dimitri. The wrongness of it made him lock himself up in his room for days until his father dragged him out, not unkindly but with enough force that Felix couldn’t argue with him.

The memory of his father telling him he couldn’t hide away forever makes his throat burn. How did his father do it? How did he live after his pelt was burned with the king in Duscur?

Maybe the problem is Felix remembers his other form. His father, Glenn—their pelts were taken from them in infancy to ensure their loyalty. How could they miss what they never knew?

Felix hurls a broken seashell at the tide.

He aches to be whole again but the thought of having his pelt back makes him miserable in an entirely different way. Dimitri dying is unthinkable. The trade isn’t worth it—nothing would be worth it. But Dimitri’s child on the throne is another type of grief, one that makes him feel pathetic.

Dimitri will marry soon enough. It’s inevitable given his status. Felix will be at his side when he does, slowly falling apart. For that’s the true problem, isn’t it? The reason for his misery isn’t his missing pelt—not entirely. His feelings for Dimitri are destroying him. He rebels at the idea of them: how can he feel this way about the man that holds the key to his very being? A man that can control him however he pleases if he wishes it so? Felix should hate him, or at the very least have the sense not to fall in love with the man he’s most vulnerable to.

Felix is the world’s biggest fool.

_____

 

Night falls before Felix manages to drag himself indoors. He makes an attempt to get through his duties but gives up when his wrist starts to cramp from signing his name one too many times.

The servants have brought his things to his room. They’ve set Dimitri’s unopened present on the bedspread. Felix yawns and contemplates putting it aside for the morning but in the end he pulls out his dagger to cut away the packaging.

The present is so tightly wrapped Felix struggles to open it. He doesn’t want to destroy whatever is inside so he takes his time. When enough of the present is visible that its contents become obvious, Felix’s impossible restlessness comes to a thundering halt.

No—Dimitri—

This can’t be what he thinks it is. There has to be some kind of mistake. Dimitri meant to give Felix something else—anything else.

I’ll miss you dearly.

That idiot. That fool. That stupid boar king.

He gave back Felix’s pelt.

_____

 

Dimitri runs his hands through Felix’s fur. “You’re beautiful,” he says, smiling warmly.

The two of them are lazing about on the beach, where the surf meets the sand. Glenn is supposed to be watching them, making sure Dimitri doesn’t drown or otherwise injure himself, but he has run off to who knows where trusting Felix enough to keep the prince from coming to any harm.

Felix splashes him in reply. He can’t talk to Dimitri in this form but it doesn’t matter when Dimitri knows him so well. They don’t need words to communicate.

Dimitri laughs. “I’m only telling you the truth. Your pelt is so soft and you swim so fast. Of course you’re beautiful, Felix.”

Felix is torn between preening and hiding his face in embarrassment. How can Dimitri just say things like that?

He sneaks a glance at Dimitri and finds two blue eyes carefully watching him. They’re so bright, his eyes, especially when Felix sees them through this form. Dimitri is the beautiful one, Felix thinks. Anyone that sees him can’t help but be drawn to him.

Dimitri leans his forehead against Felix’s fur, practically nuzzling him. Embarrassing, so embarrassing.

Felix leans closer to him in contentment.

_____

 

Dimitri is in a meeting when Felix returns to Fhirdiad Castle. Felix considers bursting into the room and demanding he be able to talk to Dimitri at once. He refrains out of politeness and because now that he is just a door away from Dimitri he feels uncharacteristically nervous.

A steady stream of people flow out of the meeting room, signaling its adjournment. Felix slips past them and enters the room to find Dimitri staring out the window. He doesn’t notice Felix. His hair is unkempt and there are circles under his eyes that weren’t there when Felix left.

Felix clicks his tongue. “I thought I told you to take care of yourself while I was gone.”

“Felix?” His shock at seeing Felix again makes Felix’s blood boil.

“Surprised to see me? Thought you’d finally gotten rid of me, I suppose.”

“Yes—no!” He draws nearer and Felix can see his shirt isn’t buttoned properly. What a joke. “Why are you here? Did you open my gift?”

Your gift—ha! Why do you think I’m so angry at you?”

“Yes—I don’t understand. You’re free. You don’t have to be here.” He speaks as if he finds Felix completely confounding. “You may live a life of your choosing, on the surface or in the water. We’re not beholden to the decisions of our ancestors.”

“And I thank you for that. But that’s not why I’m angry at you.”

His confusion turns into annoyance. “You’re not making any sense. Why have you returned?”

“For you, you fool!” Felix is truly angry now. “How could you think I wasn’t coming back? After everything—you think I would just abandon you?”

“I can take care of myself, Felix, if that’s what you’re worried about,” he says icily.

“How can you call me difficult when you’re the one that keeps running away?”

“I’m not running away.” He gestures at his feet firmly planted on the ground.

“Tell me how you really feel, Dimitri. And don’t you dare say you ‘appreciate my company’ or that you ‘find my advisement invaluable’ or any other shit like that.”

“I thought you didn’t like when I get sentimental.” Oh, the nerve of him to ever call Felix difficult.

Dimitri.”

The fight seems to leave him. He deflates and Felix is hit again with how awful he looks. His eyepatch is the old, worn-out one. His shirt is horribly wrinkled and there is a hint of stubble on his face.

“I’ve taken so much from you, Felix. Glenn, Rodrigue. I thought I could finally give you something back. You don’t know—you can’t imagine how difficult it was for me.” He leans against windowsill and stares at the horizon.

“When I was on the run your pelt was the only thing that gave me comfort. It reminded me of who I was. I hate myself for it, but there were times when I was relieved that as long as I had your pelt you were tied to me. No, more than that—you belonged to me. You could call me names, curse me, hate me but it didn’t change the fact that you were mine and the whole world could see it. I’ve wanted to give you back your pelt for months now but I couldn’t bring myself to, even as you started wasting away before my very eyes. I felt sick with myself when I realized I was willing to let you die rather than give it up. I knew then I had put a stop to my foolishness and let you be free of me.” He turns and takes a step toward Felix. “So I ask you again, why have you returned, Felix? You shouldn’t be here.”

“Don’t tell me what I should or shouldn’t do. You don’t get to decide how I feel. I’m here because I want to be. Just as I gave you my pelt because I wanted to. You’re not—you’re not the only fool between us. I—” He has to stop for a moment to compose himself. “I was always so jealous when you wore Glenn’s pelt. I wanted it to be mine. When we found you and the profess—the Archbishop, and you were wearing my pelt—” He grabs at his hair in frustration.

“Felix?” Dimitri is standing right in front of him. When did that happen?

“Dimitri.” Felix has to look up to see his face. He’s so damn tall. It’s ridiculous. Unnecessary.

“Please tell me if I’m misinterpreting things.” Dimitri leans down slowly, giving Felix more than enough time to back away if he chooses. His eyelid flutters closed; the distance between them is so negligible Felix can count his eyelashes.

The slowness of it makes Felix impatient. He grabs Dimitri’s shoulders to pull him down the rest of the way to smash their lips together. With his panicked maneuvering the kiss verges on violence and causes him to grow even more agitated — why did he never listen to Sylvain’s inane ramblings about kissing? Did he think he could spend his entire life without needing to know how? But then Dimitri laughs against his lips and Felix’s worries over being a terrible kisser vanish.

Dimitri settles a hand on his waist. Felix wants to simultaneously push it off of him and make Dimitri hold him tighter. His head spins as Dimitri kisses him like this is something he has wanted to do for a long time, and now that he can he doesn’t plan on stopping. Felix finds he doesn’t mind being kissed so thoroughly. He leans his head to the side, baring his neck for Dimitri to kiss and shivers when Dimitri’s teeth sink in instead.

“Dimitri.” His voice sounds strange—not like himself.

Dimitri sucks a depraved collar around his neck. With each new chain that blooms against his skin he finds it more and more difficult to stay standing, a problem Dimitri happily remedies by lifting Felix onto the windowsill. This suits Felix just fine as it means his legs can do better things like wrap around Dimitri’s hips and pull him close.

Dimitri’s tugs his shirt roughly and suddenly the unmistakable sound of fabric ripping interrupts Felix’s enjoyment.

“Dimitri!” Felix’s very expensive shirt is in tatters.

“Ah.”

The delayed surprise on Dimitri’s face is too much to bear.

Felix laughs and laughs until there are tears in his eyes and Dimitri mopes, not finding the situation at all funny.

“It’s just a small tear,” Dimitri claims, yet when Felix insists they leave so he can bathe and change Dimitri forces him to hold his shirt together, saying it would be indecent of Felix otherwise.

_____

 

The boar has them all fooled. Felix warns the professor repeatedly but it’s impossible to tell if his words are being taken seriously by that blank, unchanging expression.

The cool morning air reminds him of home. Of course, in Faerghus this weather would be a sign of spring and not the start of winter as it is at the monastery. Regardless, it puts him in a good mood all the way until he reaches the training grounds and finds someone has dared to wake up and train before him.

The boar. Of course.

Felix starts to turn away but his eyes catch on the pelt across the boar’s shoulders. Felix hasn’t seen him wear it since the rebellion—didn’t even know if he brought it to Garreg Mach—and the shock of it freezes Felix in place.

The boar stabs an invisible opponent with his lance, Felix’s pelt upon him glowing in the soft morning light. The most infuriating part is that Felix’s pelt looks as if it belongs on him. As if it was always meant to be his.

Why is he wearing it only now, when no one else can see?

The thought makes Felix want to bash his sword against a training dummy. He should be angry at seeing his pelt on the boar, not angry for all the times he doesn’t.

He turns away from the training grounds in frustration.

_____

 

The king’s chambers are well insulated but winters in Faerghus are bitterly cold and seep through their walls nonetheless. Fortunately for Felix, his pelt keeps away the worst of it. Dimitri is the one that must be suffering clad in the inferior human-made blankets covering his bare skin. Though he doesn’t seem to be suffering at the moment. He dozes quietly in bed, and for that Felix is grateful. Dimitri will always be a bad sleeper; it’s in his nature. They simply must work around it. Felix’s current strategy of exhausting Dimitri before bed seems to be working wonderfully.

Felix watches the rise and fall of Dimitri’s broad chest as he sleeps peacefully through sunrise. The light from the window falls across Dimitri’s face and Felix can’t resist combing his fingers through golden hair.

Eventually, Dimitri stirs. A shame as Felix would happily stare at him for the rest of the day.

“Good morning,” Dimitri says, his voice raspy with sleep. “Have you been up for long?”

“Not really.”

Dimitri sits up and stretches an arm above his head. The blankets fall to his lap, irresponsibly leaving his upper half exposed.

“Put a shirt on,” Felix scolds. “You're going to catch cold.”

“I seem to recall you advising me not to wear one during our last conversation.” His single blue eye lights up in mischief.

“That was then. The situation has since changed.”

“Hmm, has it now?” Dimitri crowds into his space, not at all subtle in his intentions.

“Dimitri.” Felix pulls his pelt tightly around his shoulders in a feeble attempt to ward Dimitri off. He does not, however, resist when Dimitri tilts his chin up for a kiss.

“Was last night not enough?” Felix asks.

“That was then, as you said. Today is a new day.”

“You’re insatiable,” Felix says as he willingly lets Dimitri guide him onto his back.

With his pelt off and lying underneath him, Felix is tragically forced to use Dimitri’s body heat to keep warm. There’s certainly no other reason for why he spreads his legs so enthusiastically it borders on demanding.

“Hurry up,” Felix says sometime later out of impatience to feel Dimitri’s full warmth above him—not for any other reason. Obviously.

Dimitri lines himself up with Felix and oh—finally, the winter cold is vanquished. All Felix can feel is Dimitri’s heat surrounding him, inside of him, stuffing him full.

Felix buries his face in Dimitri’s shoulder and pulls him closer until it feels as if every part of him burns like a furnace from Dimitri’s touch. The tradeoff of hiding his face is it puts in the perfect position for Dimitri to whisper wicked words into his ear. Oh, Felix, you take me so well. Look at how you clench around me. Felix squirms pathetically, unable and unwilling to put a stop to Dimitri’s whispers.

Dimitri takes a hold of his cock and with little more than a few errant strokes Felix is spilling between them. When he is finished, Dimitri turns him over and lifts his hips to better use him for his own release. He is relentless in his pursuit, uncaring of Felix’s sensitivity as he knows it’s Felix’s preference to be taken like this, unable to do much more than whimper as Dimitri ruts into him.

Felix’s pelt is soft underneath him. He rests his head against it until Dimitri lifts him by his unbound hair, forcing him to curve his back to Dimitri’s liking. He hardly minds; the tug at his scalp feels pleasant. He holds himself as Dimitri likes and repeats his name until Dimitri is coming inside him unrestrained.

Dimitri falls on top of him, clinging to his waist. They’ve made a mess on Felix’s pelt. Not the first time it has happened but Felix clicks his tongue anyway when he regains the ability to care about such things.

“Look at what you’ve done.” Felix points to a damp spot on his pelt.

Dimitri presses soft lips against his back. “Yes, yes. I’ll clean it up later.”

“You’ll clean it now. What if it stains, hmm? What then?”

He doesn’t need to see Dimitri’s face to know he is rolling his one eye. Felix simply knows it.

“Of course, Your Grace. I’ll get to cleaning it right away. As I am but a humble servant and not the King of Fódlan you are ordering around like a maid.”

Dimitri may grumble but he gets up and takes Felix’s pelt nonetheless. He doesn’t hold it in his hands but wears it, likely adding more stains in the process but Felix doesn’t mind as the sight of it pleases him.

Handing his pelt to Dimitri is an act of trust. Any day Dimitri may choose not to return it. Felix is not always kind with his words and Dimitri is not always patient. Dimitri can decide he tires of quarreling with Felix and use Felix’s pelt to get his way. If Felix wants to protect himself from such an end his best choice is to lock his pelt away where Dimitri can’t find it. He would never have to worry then.

But Felix doesn’t want to live like that. He wants to see his pelt hanging off Dimitri’s shoulders and know he can take it back at any time. He wants Dimitri to carry a piece of him that everyone can see. He wants the satisfaction of wearing his own pelt with Dimitri right next to him, flaunting how Dimitri has his loyalty in truth.

There is much Felix wants but saying it in words is difficult. So he chooses to show it in his actions. He chooses to in his trust.

Felix shares his pelt with Dimitri out of love.