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Those Who Look and Do Not See

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Geralt was laying down at the top of the tallest tower of Kaer Morhen wrapped in furs. “Tell me what they look like,” he said, “Remind me.” He was facing the stars that blanketed the sky. 

“I don’t know they are stars, they shine,” Lambert said. “You can make them form shapes to find your way home.”

“I can’t,” Geralt reminded him. 

“You look at them and they are fixed,” Eskel said from his other side. “But if you stare too long you feel like they are rearranging them. Vesemir has us memorizing them, to find our way home. They guide sailors. I don’t trust them.”

“They aren’t a colour,” Lambert added, “Poets swear they sparkle like diamonds, or gleam like silver. Bullshit. They aren’t a colour, that is their point, if they were a real colour the black would eat them alive. But it doesn’t because they are colourless.”

Geralt felt his hand lifted. He felt Eskel’s fingers against his. Eskel was moving Geralt’s hand. “Like that, that pattern, you follow the tip of it and you find you way home.” He moved his fingers in the same pattern. Not that it meant anything to him. 

“How else do I find my way home?” Geralt asked. “Since the stars won’t guide me?”

“Breathe in the stone around us, Geralt,” Lambert told him. “Nothing there will smell like Kaer Morhen. Like the stone, and magic, the pain and hurt -”

“The friendship and brotherhood,” Eskel added.

“Smell it Geralt, track it like how we are being taught to track creatures. Follow it home. Because if you don’t, I’ll find your corpse and shit on it.”

Geralt laughed. He raised his fingers and traced the pattern in the sky, Eskel adjusting him a bit. Lambert held a stone chip from the tower to his nose and he breathed it. Memorized it. Would never forget. He would always be able to follow the scent of home.

*

“Are you blind?” Jaskier hissed.

“Yes,” Geralt replied for at least the 23rd time to the bard. “I am.”

“You are making that painfully obvious tonight,” Jaskier groaned and Geralt shot out his hand before the man could start banging his head against a pillar. He cushioned the dramatic blow. “Geralt, the man is clearly the best friend of the duke and you told him that no perfume could hide the scent of the rot in his balls.”

“I was being helpful. If he doesn’t have a healer attend to that soon, there will be no rescuing his cock. Or his mind, the rot is traveling. How could you not smell it?”

“Because I am not a witcher. The point is that he was wearing that yellow insignia that shows he is in the inner circle of the court. It was obvious.”

“If you can see, I suppose it would be,” Geralt agreed. He plucked the lute from Jaskier’s hands. “If you hit me with this, you won’t be able to perform tonight, smooth over my social gaffes.”

“Maybe tonight I won’t. Have you ever thought of that hmm?” Jaskier was tapping a foot; he always did when he was trying to hold onto his anger. Rat a tap, tap tap, rat a tap. A moment later he handed back the lute, because it was all over now. Jaskier laughed, “Melitele, I will have to sing my ass off tonight to save your pay - again - and what is the thanks I get?”

“I let you travel with me. And last week I saved you from that husband who wanted to gut you.”

“True, and the look on the man’s face, it was worth it.” Jaskier strummed and adjusted the strings. “Off to save your life - again.” He began to walk and soon the lute and singing drowned out his footsteps. Geralt leaned against the pillar, breathed in, listened to the rustle of clothes, the steps of feet. There were probably fifty or sixty people at this gala to celebrate his freeing the county from the curse they were under. He could only see a couple of the people in the room, and that was interesting. It was all black as it should be in a dining hall like this but he could see two waves in the black. One didn’t know they weren’t human, and the other absolutely did.

He could also see Jaskier’s music. That was a new development over the last two years. Ten years of the bard tagging along and he had seen nothing of the man, but the last couple the music slowly became a colour, or not quite a colour.

The absence of colour. Colourless. Jaskier’s songs trailed in the air, like what he thought he remembered stars looking like. He smiled a bit. It was pretty. He wondered if it just was the songs, or if Jaskier was pretty. The song stars shifted a bit, and focused. Jaskier was directing all that power at someone in particular. They were trailing towards him. There were four people standing near him based on the sound of their breathing, he wondered which one Jaskier was singing to.

*

“What do trees look like, it is hard to remember what green means.” They were camping. They had been sent out with a bit of rope, a few daggers, and one health potion each. They were to survive a week. Eskel had already passed this, but had bullied Vesemir until he let him go with Lambert and Geralt. It had taken Geralt a few years to convince the elders to let him train. That the mistake wouldn’t stop him from being a witcher. And he had done well in the keep, in weapons. The mutagens had ruined his eyes, he saw nothing, but they had improved his nose, ears, what he could taste in the air. But there were worries about him out in the world.

They were babying him. And fuck that.

He would learn, and his friends would help him. They were camped and he had laid the fire, Lambert practiced his igni to light it. Lambert was weak on spells, and weakest on igni. Geralt had been encouraged not to use igni. They were planning to change that this week. Because seriously, he was blind, but no way would he be as shitty at signs as Lambert. They were by the fire. “Is green warm?”

“Depends on the green I suppose,” Eskel said. He turned the rabbit on the spit. “Woodland grass is a warm green. Valley green is a cooler colour.” 

“Green is green,” Lambert said. “I like the green of pine trees more than fruit trees or vines. Warm or cool, it is a quiet colour, doesn’t scream like reds and oranges. Hate yellow.”

“Why?” Geralt asked.

“Because that is the colour of our eyes,” Lambert snorted, “Looks like piss.”

“They look like polished stones with hidden depths,” Eskel countered.

“You’ve been reading too much poetry again.” 

Geralt listened to them bicker. He knew that, he remember the yellow eyes of the witchers. He did. But colours were fading what they meant. His personal knowledge of them was fading. He knew he was facing the fire because he could feel it, almost taste it. Fires had yellow in them. He was pretty sure. “Are my eyes yellow, too?”

The other two fell silent. He waited. Would it be poetic or sarcastic?

Instead, Lambert’s hand pressed over his eyes. It wasn’t any darker than it had been before. “Why’d you do that?”

“No clue actually,” Lambert laughed and pulled his hand away. “Not a fucking clue. Yeah, same yellow as us. They don’t react as much though? Actually that’s why I was doing it.” It seemed his brain was catching up with his instincts - the story of Lambert. “The dark and then the light of the fire. Pupils barely changed. If they were registering anything they would have changed.”

Geralt nodded. “What’s your favourite colour?”

“Blue, I guess. That greyish blue of dawn, it scares me more than the black, because you know the light is coming, but it isn’t there yet. Lots can happen in those shadows.”

“I’m not the only one been reading poetry,” Eskel teased. “Red of ripe apples. Sweet, lush.”

“Brown,” Geralt said. “The horse I had ridden. It had been brown. I still remember what that looked like.”

“If I can, I’ll make sure all your horses on the path are brown,” Lambert promised.

In the dawn they were woken by a monster’s cry and they all readied their small daggers. Something tore through their camp, broken Lambert’s arm, cut them up and then disappeared again. They set the bone, clean the wounds. “It was a young Leshen,” Geralt said. “It went that way.”

“Are you sure?”

“I saw it,” Geralt snapped and then paused. “I…saw it. I can see the trail of it, spidery that way, red. It was…I saw it.” He was terrified. How had he seen it?”

“Well, if we have a trail, we hunt,” Lambert said. “Give Geralt good practice for his signs.”

Geralt took a deep breath. “Follow me,” he said, and was shocked when they readily did.

*

“I wouldn’t know, I can’t see,” Geralt said.

“Yes, yes, I am aware that you are blind to the vagaries of fashion, but I promise these new clothes on me are all the rage in the major courts, and are guaranteed to bring us in even more money in the establishments we frequent.”

“How? Wouldn’t overly fancy clothes annoy peasants and farmers?” Geralt found that curious. “Wouldn’t they resent the expense?”

“No, because I am not in the keep, I am with them. I dressed like this for them.”

“You dressed like that for yourself,” Geralt countered. 

“Of course I do, I look amazing in this shade of blue,” Jaskier was clearly touching his sleeves, preening. His voice always got a particular inflection in it when he preened. “And I swear Geralt, if you get a single drop of monster gut or blood on this particular set, I will write the most scathing song about you.”

“I am, of course, shaking with fear,” Geralt listened to Jaskier move about the room, testing the feel of the new clothes, and Geralt set about checking his weapons. “Guess that means that you won’t be trailing after me on the hunt tonight will you? Don’t want to ruin your pretty new doublet.” It wasn’t a hard hunt, but still he was always happier when Jaskier stayed safe. One dagger edge wasn’t smooth against his finger.

“Why do you always do that?” Jaskier had moved closer. “Test your edge with your finger. What if you cut yourself?”

“I have,” Geralt said. “Took forever to learn how to feel the edge to know whether it needed work without cutting myself.”

“Yes but can’t you look at your blade and tell?”

Geralt faced where Jaskier was. “Are you serious?” Jaskier always made silly jokes about Geralt’s blindness, but this seemed a little much.

“I’m sorry,” Jaskier sounded stroppy, made Geralt want to take Jaskier over his knee. Last couple of years he had had more and more thoughts of that nature. “I didn’t realize that taking care of your blade required arcane rituals and virgin blood and making it needlessly complex.”

“I have to do it by feel, I can’t see it,” Geralt said in what he that was a very clear manner.

“Yes yes, we do not see our weapons with our eyes, we see them with our hearts, I’ve known many a solider, they all say shit like that.”

“Really, they talk about their swords in bed with you? You must be a poorer lover than I thought that that is what they are thinking about in the moment.” Geralt dragged the dagger across his whetstone and thought about it while Jaskier was speechless. The man had honestly never realized that Geralt was blind. Geralt should probably correct this, it had been fifteen or so years. Or he could have some fun with it. The gasps were starting to form noises which meant a horrifically lame comeback was about to happen. For a man so talented with words in songs, he was quite dreadful at instant insults.

“How dare you, fine, we are doing this.” Geralt could hear the rustle of clothes as Jaskier stripped down.

“Doing what?” Geralt put the dagger down, because the air always grew charged when Jaskier was about to do something incredibly bravely stupid - it was the basis of his personality, bravery with zero sense. 

“Fucking you, I am not spending another second of our friendship with you believing I am bad in bed! What the fuck, Geralt? How could you even suggest that. Get naked, chop chop.”

Geralt thought about it. He liked the sound of Jaskier’s voice and how the man’s hands felt when he washed Geralt’s hair, tended to wounds. He shrugged, the hunt could wait a few hours and he was curious, had been for a while. He began to strip off his clothes as well, and lay back on the bed. Later he had an arm wrapped around Jaskier who was flopped on his chest. They’d need to clean up soon, or they’d stick together and that would be unpleasant. “Sorry Jaskier, I was thinking about my sword the whole time.”

“You -” Jaskier growled and then snorted. “You mean your dick, don’t you?”

“I do.” Geralt ran a hand up and down Jaskier’s back. “Now that you have affirmed you are a fantastic fuck, are we done?”

“Please Geralt, I am a learned man, and one thing they teach you at school is performing a task once does not make mastery. You have to do it again and again. A true master spends his whole life engaged in technique.”

Jaskier never could just simply say, yes I want us to fuck a lot, and Geralt enjoyed that. He sat Jaskier up in his lap, and for just a moment he could almost see the shape of Jaskier, a flicker of brightness before it was all black again. 

“Are you human?”

“Yes?”

“Hmm,” Geralt mulled. “Interesting.”

“What is?”

“I almost saw you.”

“My wolf, I see you too.” There was a kiss pressed to his jaw.

Geralt was so mad at himself, for falling in love with an idiot, but what could you do?

*

“What do you look like now?” Geralt asked. 

“I don’t want to talk about it, Wolf,” Eskel rolled over in his bed. “Leave it.”

“Why?” Geralt sat on the edge of the bed. “Is it that bad?”

“Bad enough,” Eskel sighed. “Fuck, I was such an idiot. Never do the Law of Surprise, Geralt. It just fucks you over.” 

Geralt lay down next to him. “That bad?”

“It was. I was a fool, or fate hates me, I don’t know.”

“Lambert would say why couldn’t it be both.”

Eskel laughed a bit. “He would. Weird not having him home. He usually doesn’t spend winter out and about. Likes pissing us off too much.”

“I miss him too.” Geralt threw an arm over his brother. “The Path is interesting.” He thought about his last season. “I can see magic.”

“Yeah? You’ve never mentioned being able to see our signs.”

“I can’t, but I met a sorceress. I couldn’t see her, or I almost could. I could see her magic, how it wound around her, which meant I could sort of see her shape. It was golden bands that were twisted. Wonder if all look like that or it is personality, magic type based.”

“Was it pretty?”

“It was.”

“We aren’t human, can you see anything of us?” 

Geralt was quiet, this was something he had kept to himself a bit, and he couldn’t say why. “A little. Sometimes. A flicker of shimmering colour. But it isn’t all witchers. Just you, Lambert, Vesemir. I should be able to, shouldn’t I? I think the mutagens, narrowed me. Because I see monsters, true magic on mages. But I can’t see our signs, because that is forced magic? We aren’t human but human enough. Only I see you. A little. Almost.”

“I have scars now. On my face.”

Geralt let Eskel move his hand, and he felt the scars. They were bad. “You followed the stars home though.”

“I did,” Eskel leaned in when Geralt cupped his cheek. “The looks I get are going to be more painful than the injury. People already glare at us as it is.”

“They do?” Geralt wasn’t surprised by that, not really. “I guess there are some advantages to not seeing. Never worried if the whore I fuck is attractive or not either.”

“Geralt I’m going to try something, let me?”

“Sure,” Geralt agreed and he was swept up in a huge hug. He hugged Eskel back as tightly as he could.

“Love you, Wolf.”

“Love you too, brother,” Geralt said and kissed his scars.

“Tell me what you see,” Eskel demanded.

Geralt blinked for a moment he saw the shape of the man next to him, a green nimbus around him and then it was gone. “You, I saw you.” It was really gone but he wanted it back. “How did that happen?”

“We’ll see if you figure it out on your own.” Eskel yawned. “Stay?”

“Of course.” Geralt loved his brother would do anything for me. That thought made the green shimmer appear for just a moment and it disappeared again. He would figure this out.

*

“I can’t see Yen,” Geralt spun around, and even the trail of her purple magic was gone.

“Of course you can’t, you fucking idiot!” Jaskier was shouting at him. “Because you, ugh, I am so mad at you right now for the shit you said up there! But I can’t portal away like she could, so guess what, you are going to be stuck listening to me explain very thoroughly why you are asshole.”

Geralt went to her tent but it was all gone, those wisps of purple of her magic all completely cut off from him. She had blocked him so very thoroughly from being able to see her. He collapsed to the bed. Because that meant she had taken the knowledge of his blindness, that the mutagens let him see the chaos and the magic, and she had crafted a spell to utterly hide herself from him. No blow had ever hurt more than that one.

“And another thing, it’s all my fault? Barely half of the shit you have waded in can be classified as my fault. You have shoveled plenty in your time, my friend. Plenty!”

“I can’t see her, Jaskier.” Geralt was sitting on her abandoned bed. He had to hug himself. “She made it so that I couldn’t see her.”

“Well of course she did, you took away her choice, no one likes that ever. But maybe one day she’ll forgive you.” Jaskier sat next to him, pat him on the shoulder. “I am giving you a moment of sympathy and then I will return to yelling at you for being a bastard.”

“I’ll never forgive her,” Geralt said. He couldn’t, because yes he had done everything wrong, and he deserved her anger, but she knew that was a cruel twist, and it something she had planned, crafted, had ready to use someday. 

“Well, that seems a bit harsh,” Jaskier replied. “But fine, we’ll never forgive her. She and I only enjoyed antagonizing each other, I can stop enjoying it and just piss her off whenever we run into her.”

“We?” Geralt paused.

“Well, yes?” Jaskier stood. “What else would it be but we?”

“I said horrible things to you,” Geralt followed the pacing that Jaskier was doing as the bard sprang back up.

“Yes you did,” Jaskier agreed and started lecturing him. That flicker of colour was there and started to grow. A bright blue nimbus around Jaskier, but he knew the man wasn’t magic. The more Jaskier went on the brighter the colour went. It hurt, but was also so beautiful that Geralt couldn’t look away. And it wasn’t disappearing like the green around Eskel, or the red of Lambert, the soft bronze of Vesemir. Those he could only really see sometimes. But this was staying fixed. 

“Stop being so bright, it hurts,” Geralt finally interrupted.

“It should hurt, you need to face your feelings, Geralt!” Jaskier stopped in front of him. “I love you, though Melitele knows why some days, and -”

“You love me, what the fuck?” Geralt watched the colour fade away. “No, don’t go away too. Don’t make it so I can’t see you.” Geralt thought about the times he saw his brothers. “I love you,” he shouted, and there the colour flared again, brighter than ever. “I love you, Jaskier.”

“I know that, I know everything about you.”

“I’m blind.”

“To how to express your emotions, I know, I know, and I always forgive it, because you show it in a million ways. But the words matter too, Geralt.” There was a heavy sigh. “What do we do now?” 

Jaskier was sitting next to him again, and Geralt cautiously held out his hand, and he watched that blue shimmer reach out and clasp his fingers. Jaskier wasn’t fading. He wasn’t cutting himself off, he was sitting right there and staying.

“We could go to the coast,” Geralt suggested. “That could be a thing we do.”

Jaskier leaned against him, “It could be at that.”

*
Geralt stumbled over a rock in the courtyard, and Lambert just laughed at him. “Asshole,” Geralt shouted and blasted aard at him. Decades now and he could finally see their magic in the air. He saw the flicker of Lambert’s red shimmer as he went flying. “Only you would be happiest when I knock you back.”

“I’m contrary like that,” Lambert shouted. They scrapped until they were both breathing heavily. When they collapsed on the ground next to each other, he could see the outline of Lambert fairly clearly. “So you ready to talk about it?”

“Nope,” Geralt said.

“That bad, huh?”

“I saw her. Right as I killed her, I saw her,” Geralt said after a moment.

“Well, fuck. That requires getting shit faced.”

Geralt had heard worse ideas. They found a few bottles and settled in front of the fire in the main hall. By the third bottle Geralt was telling Lambert everything. He was oddly relieved that it was Lambert, because Vesemir would be stoic, and Eskel sympathetic. Lambert was always willing to call a shitty situation shitty. “So game plan. We kill this Stregobor, that is step one.”

“I love you, so much,” Geralt said and that red flair around Lambert shone for a moment. “But I think he will be hard to kill.”

“Hmm, we’ll figure that out. Two, this girl. You saw her. Like her features, what she was wearing?”

“No,” Geralt shook her head. “Like how I see you sometimes, a shimmer around them. But she also had that monster webbing that I see.” Geralt reached into his pocket. “I can see that shimmer around this.” It was her brooch. 

“Wait, wait, wait.” Lambert jumped up and began to pace. “Shit, Geralt? Do you know what you are seeing? Auras!”

“Auras?”

“People’s souls! You see souls!”

“If I did, wouldn’t I see everyone’s? I don’t see the blacksmith when I go to sell the swords I collect,” Geralt pointed out.

“There has to be something that triggers it? Like an incantation, or something in your brain. A thing the mutagens did. So, we figured it out right? The mutagens blinded you to the mundane. You don’t see a tree, a house, most people. But you see monsters, magic. You can see elves right?”

“A bit, yes,” Geralt said. “They are a weird sort of wave in the black.”

“That means there is something about very particular souls that is important, super important enough that the mutagens acknowledge it as something vital for you to see.” Lambert was jumping around, he thought best on the move. “What is it, though? The catalyst that makes that happen?”

“Death?” was all Geralt could come up with.

“No, that would be stupid,” Lambert waved a hand. Geralt followed the sound of his pacing, the occasional flicker of red he saw around Lambert, until the homemade alcohol hit him and he passed out. There weren’t any answers anyways, it was just a weird phenomenon nothing more.

*

“Geralt?”

“Hmm?” He turned his face to Ciri. He had been able to see her from the moment they found each other in the woods. She just glowed silver - a mix of whatever else was in her blood, and that thing that made him see some people. She was as bright as what he guessed a perfect blade glinting in the sun would be. 

“How do you manage?”

“Manage?” Geralt was grinding up some flowers for potions he thought they might need on the way to Kaer Morhen. “This? I memorized the recipes.” That had been easy, and accomplished so many decades ago.

“But how do you know you are using the right ingredients?”

Ah.

“Smell, touch, taste even.”

“Really? But some flowers smell the same.”

“To your nose, not to mine,” Geralt explained. He went to the pile next to him, picked two of them. “Do these look the same to you?”

“They are the same,” Ciri sounded certain.

“Jaskier?”

“What?” Jaskier snapped. He had clearly been dozing off, or writing a song. No, dozing, his blue looked sleepy. “Flowers? They are the same.”

“No,” Geralt said. He held one up to his nose. “This one is just a little more bitter the longer the scent lingers in your nose. The petals bend a little more to your touch. They are the same on the surface to a casual gaze, but since I can’t give them that, I learned other means.”

“Yes, gods above forgive if you stopped to notice that flowers are pretty,” Jaskier muttered and clearly was ready to doze off again. Finding Ciri had pushed the bard to his limits. He was still as bravely stupid as he had been in his youth, but it took more out of him than it had before. He listened to Jaskier grumble and then he came over and rested his head on Geralt’s thigh. That shimmer around him was a greyish blue, petulant. He had never known a colour could be petulant until he had switched to always seeing the shape of Jaskier. He stroked Jaskier’s hair and the colour softened. Jaskier softened.

“Do you,” Ciri was hesitant. “May I ask questions?”

“Of course,” Geralt said.

“Did you once know what flowers looked like?”

“I did, I wasn’t always blind,” Geralt told her. He buried his fingers in Jaskier’s hair, scratched at his scalp and Jaskier made that contented noise, almost a purr that he didn’t even realize he made - patterned off of the noise Geralt made when he was happy in Jaskier’s arms. “It has faded though. What, eighty or so years is a long time to hold onto the memory of what flowers look like.”

“Was it an accident?”

“Was what an accident? Geralt deciding flowers were stupid and he’d ignore them unless they were useful for potions would be an on purpose thing,” Jaskier shifted his weight a bit. “How could hating joy be anything but an on purpose thing?”

“It was an accident on purpose thing,” Geralt ignored Jaskier. “Witchers are given mutagens that change them. I took to the first batch well, and they tested more on me. Only something went wrong there, blinded me, almost.”

“Almost?”

“From what we have figured out, if it is tied to the chaos I can see it. Monsters are this almost webbing that I can see, track. Elves a wave in the black. I can see the magic of mages wrap around them, but not the people themselves. I can see a sign I cast move through the air. And I can see a few people.”

“Can you see me?” 

“I can,” Geralt told her, and the colour around her seemed to dance. “I can’t see what you are wearing, what colour your eyes are, but I see this shimmer around you. Your Uncle Lambert thinks I can see some souls, their aura. You sparkle silver.”

“I don’t have an Uncle Lambert.” Geralt could hear the frown in her voice.

He chuckled a bit, “You will, and I am terribly sorry for him.” He looked down and the colour around Jaskier was just about the darkest he had ever seen the blue go. It was unbearable sadness. “Jaskier, what’s wrong, my fox?”

“You can’t see.”

“No, I am blind,” Geralt tried to touch his hair again, but Jaskier was sitting up.

“You are blind blind.”

“I am,” Geralt frowned. “Jaskier?” He had thought it would be funny when Jaskier finally realized the truth, but the sad pouring from his colour was painful.

“What colour is that tree over there?” Geralt watched the shape of Jaskier’s arm point.

He breathed in deeply. “Pine forest, frost on the ground, so I would say dark green needles, covered in frost, brown trunk.”

“But that is a guess from remembering what trees look like, but you cannot see it.”

“No,” Geralt shrugged. 

“But I’ve barely ever seen you stumble! You fight humans as easily as monsters. You -” Jaskier fell silent.

“My other senses are heightened, I hear everything, and can use that to shape the world around me. Same with scent. The mutagens enhanced everything, and we spent a decade training me to use that to follow the Path.”

“Jaskier, I don’t understand,” Ciri’s shimmer was dim. “You didn’t know he was blind?”

“How would I?”

“I told you the day after our situation with the elves, Jaskier I am blind and while I am fine taking care of myself I highly doubt I can take care of you as well, so you had an adventure now move along.”

“I thought it was a metaphor,” Jaskier’s voice caught in his throat. “I always thought it was a metaphor.”

“I know, figured that out almost a decade ago. It was funny. How many ways could I tell you that I couldn’t see, and have you completely miss the fact that I was blind.” Geralt smiled. “Clever prank, isn’t it?” He tried to will Jaskier to understanding that it was funny.

“No, you bastard. I’ve been treating you like shit, without realizing it. Fuck, the things I have said, why the fuck do you love me? I’ve been so cruel. Fuck, fuck, Geralt.”

Geralt pulled Jaskier into his lap and kissed him to stop the babbling. “Jaskier, if I truly minded, I would have confronted you more thoroughly about it. You didn’t treat me like shit, you treated me like you treat me. Dramatically, bravely, a million things all wrapped up together. It was fine.”

“How could it be fine?” 

Geralt pressed his forehead against Jaskier’s, “Because we loved each other.”

“Oh, is that why you can see some people? Eist always said, true love familial, romantic, whatever, was a gift, a magical gift from the gods. It is something that can never be fully explained, when you think about it. There is nothing mundane about love. That means you love me, doesn’t it? That you see that shimmer around me. Thank you, Geralt. I love you too.”

Pieces from decades passed all slid into place in a moment. He’d have to punch Eskel for not spelling it out better once they were home. “You are blue you know,” he told Jaskier.

“I was wearing blue the day we met,” Jaskier said. “You see me.”

“I do.” Geralt kissed Jaskier, leaned into to nuzzle his neck, and held out his hand. Ciri scrambled over and the family were hugging. Ciri’s silver and Jaskier’s blue looked so beautiful next to each other. “I see both of you.”

“Shit, does this mean I can’t tease you about being blind to good taste anymore?”

“No, I’d miss it if you stopped,” Geralt reassured him.

“Good, be hard to stop after all this time. How did you fall in love with an idiot like me, Geralt?”

“Mostly because you were there,” Geralt replied and laughed at how Jaskier smacked his arm. “And because the first time I saw your songs hang in the air, I knew I couldn’t let you go.”

“That’s so pretty.”

“It is,” Jaskier agreed.

Geralt just hugged them close, and enjoyed the way that the hug caused both their shimmers to brighten.

*

“What will this mutagen do to me?” Geralt was scared but trying not to show it. So many extra poisons, pumped into him, that he now hurt more from the absence of pain than pain itself.

“We’re going to improve your eyes even more,” the witcher said. “Your eyes took so well to the base mutagen, that we want to push it a bit more.”

“Do we have to?”

“You’ll see in a way no man or witcher ever has before,” the elder witcher explained. “Imagine that Geralt, seeing the world in a completely different way than anyone ever has. Doesn’t that sound impressive?”

It rather did. “Will it make colours brighter? I like the blue sky.” Geralt’s limbs were still too sore from the last batch of mutagens that Vesemir was carrying him to the tables.

“It will make you see incredible things,” the elder said. “I’m almost jealous of what you will see.”

Geralt nodded. He couldn’t wait to see how blue the sky would look. Finally a change to him that sounded worth it.

*

Geralt sat on the wall, and saw the shimmer of his family all having a snowball fight together. He realized those outlines almost formed what he thought he remembered rainbows looking like. He saw them in a way no one else did, ever could. 

He was so distracted by all the colours moving about that he was blindsided by a snowball hitting him in the face.

“Jaskier!” Ciri shouted shocked. “You shouldn’t have -”

“What, he said he’s all heightened senses blah blah blah, he should have heard it then. Not my fault he’s blind. What’s he going to do, get revenge, I’d like to see him try.”

“Would you now?” Geralt hopped down off the wall and formed a snowball. He watched that blue shimmer gleam before it started to run. Geralt perfectly hit Jaskier’s ass.

“Oh, it is on!” Jaskier shouted.

“It is,” Geralt agreed, and joined in the fray.