“If I jumped off, there’s nothing you could do about it,” Dream’s head jerked to the side, eyeing Tommy carefully where the boy was standing at the edge of the bridge they had built back to the portal hub. “I’d be fully dead- gone, just like that.”
Dream carefully inched closer to the teenager, not wanting to give Tommy any reason to feel the need to get away quickly. “I kindly ask that you don’t ,” he said, arm shooting out and grabbing Tommy by the back of his shirt, pulling him away from the edge just like he’d done two days previous. Tommy didn’t resist or even react, just let himself be yanked backwards into Dream’s body. “It’s not your time to die, Tommy,” the admin insisted, wrapping an arm around the boy and guiding him back down the path they’d finished.
“I know… I know you said that I’m not allowed back but do you think…” Tommy trailed off for a moment, unsure if he wanted to push his request to see his friends just once anymore onto the man walking with him. Dream tilted his head and waited, letting Tommy finish the thought. “Can you make an exception for Christmas?” Dream hummed, stepping into the portal back to Tommy’s exile ‘vacation’ home.
Tommy watched Dream out of the corner of his eye, waiting anxiously for the older man’s reply. “How about we make a deal, Tommy.” They stepped out of the portal, and Dream turned to look at him. “I will write up and sign a visitor’s pass for you- that will allow you to visit the SMP and L’Manburg on certain days…” Tommy’s eyes went wide and hopeful, but Dream pushed on before the teen could start shouting over him. “However! You will spend the entire visit by my side. I will put one of those leashes parents use on rambunctious children on you, if I have too.”
The blonde teen pulled a face at that, scowling as Dream shrugged. “You’re gonna put a fuckin leash on me? What the fuck big man?”
The admin sighed softly, pulling his mask to the side to make proper eye contact, and set his hands on Tommy’s shoulders. “Tommy,” he said, tone serious. “You only have one life left. I don’t want to see you getting hurt because you ran off and started trouble.” Tommy started at Dream in surprise, unsure of how to respond. Luckily, he didn’t have to worry about it, because the admin stepped back and strode away in the direction of the house Wilbur had made. Tommy watched the man walk around their set up before shaking his head to clear it.
A notification beeped on his communicator, and he glanced down. It was a message from Lazar- causing the boy to light up one more. “Dream!” he shouted, grabbing his pickaxe and stumbling over to his mine. The admin glanced over with raised eyebrows. “We need cobblestone!” he shouted, “Lazar wants to visit me!” Dream blinked before smiling, grabbing his own pickaxe and following the younger boy down into his mine. Neither of them spoke of what the admin had said to the exiled teen, but it was a constant voice in the back of his mind as he watched Dream tear through the monsters that posed a threat to his well being.
Tommy ends up agreeing to Dream’s conditions. The admin isn’t surprised, and it almost pissed Tommy off that he was so easy to read. Almost. But the joy of being allowed to see his friends again overpowered it. In fact, he was so excited that he didn’t seem to care that he was still holding Dream’s hand as they walked along the Prime Path. He talked endlessly about everything- even though not much had changed in the few days he’d been gone. Dream just nodded long, occasionally tugging on Tommy’s sleeve to keep him moving. “We can’t be late,” he’d say when Tommy asked what the rush was for, but refused to tell the boy what they would be late to .
Dream led him into L’Manburg, pausing momentarily. “Here,” he said, letting go of Tommy’s hand to wrap a cloth around the teen’s eyes. Tommy made a noise of protest, but Dream shushed him. “I’m not going to let you get hurt, Tommy,” he said, tying it gently around Tommy’s head. “You said that you trusted me, didn’t you? We’ve bonded.” He shot Tommy’s words from the night before back at the boy, and the teen sighed in resignation. The admin took the younger boy’s hand back into his own, and wrapped his other arm around his shoulders to carefully lead him along the wooden paths of his old country.
There were a few hiccups along the way, but the two of them got to their destination unscathed. Tommy heard a door open, and he was gently pushed inside. He went to keep walking forward, but two hands on his shoulder from behind stopped him in his tracks. “Dream, what the-” The cloth was untied, slipping away from his face, revealing that Tommy was standing in the entrance of his old house, surrounded by a large handful of server citizens. He clapped a hand to his mouth as they all shouted in greeting, and Dream pushed the boy forward into the arms of Tubbo, who stood at the very front. They clung to each other, Tommy shaking as he held back tears. It’d only been a few days, but that was too long for him. More people joined the hug, but all Tommy could register was Tubbo’s arms around him. His best friend- despite being the one who pulled the trigger on his exile- was back by his side. A little voice in the back of his head reminded him that he couldn’t stay here, that this was only a visit, but in that moment he couldn’t bring himself to care. Now that he was back with Tubbo, nothing else mattered.
Dream smiled at the two boys, leaning over to Sam and muttering a short request before leaving the room so he could finish his project. Tommy didn’t even notice the man’s lacking presence- too caught up in the joy of being with Tubbo and Ranboo and all his friends. It was only when the sun started to set that Tommy realized that the masked admin had been gone. “It’s just strange,” he told Tubbo when the older boy asked him why it mattered. “Like, he said that he was gonna put me on a leash so I didn’t leave his side if he had too.”
“He had to step out to finish something,” Sam said from where he sat next to the front door. The three young boys who were still in the house looked over to the only adult who’d stuck around. “Asked me to keep an eye on you for him- make sure you don’t get into any trouble.”
The three teens shared a look as the door swung open, the admin stepping inside. They watched the man as he set down a chest against the wall and dumped something inside. “You ‘bout ready to go, Tommy?” he asked, not bothering to look at the teen as he rifled through his inventory.
Tommy nodded, slightly dejected, and stood up. Tubbo and Ranboo followed suit, the teens giving each other one last hug. “You’ll come visit me, right?” the youngest asked, receiving enthusiastic nods from his companions.
“Actually,” Dream said, catching the attention of the teens. “Should you be interested, I’ve left something that might be of interest to the two of you here.” He kicked at the side of the chest. “You know- if you want.” The admin wrapped an arm around Tommy’s shoulders, turning him and guiding the blonde out of the room. “I’m sure we’ll be seeing the two of you soon. Night boys, night Sam.”
Quiet but confused ‘goodbyes’ followed them outside, the two blonde boys casually strolling along the wooden roads of L’Manburg. “What did you leave them?” Tommy asked the admin as they exited the Nether Portal near his tent.
Dream smiled, ruffling the younger boy’s hair. “You’ll find out soon enough- probably by tomorrow.” Tommy frowned, but Dream didn’t reveal anything more. “I’ll see you in the morning. Good night!”
“Good night,” Tommy repeated back to the man as he went back through the nether portal. Wilbur was waiting for him, and Tommy happily told him about his day with Tubbo and Ranboo.
The sound of shouting dragged Tommy from his slumber, the teen groggily sitting up to find out what the commotion was about. He was greeted by the sight of Tubbo standing at the entrance of his tent, a command block in his hands. The two of them stared at each other for a moment, Tommy still registering what was happening.
“Oh. It worked.” Ranboo blinked into existence a few blocks behind Tubbo, also holding a command block.
“...What the FUUUUUUUUUUCK!” Tommy jumped to his feet, gaze jumping between the two teens in front of him. Behind him there was a burst of wheezing laughter, and the exiled teen whirled around in time to see Dream almost fall over. “How did- what the-”
“Dream gave us command blocks that teleport us here!” Tubbo said, shoving the block in Tommy’s face when he turned to look back at his best friend.
Tommy starred in surprise, looking back over his shoulder at the admin in question. Dream, having calmed down, shrugged one shoulder. “A little admin power abuse never hurt anyone,” was the only explanation he gave, and Tommy broke into a grin. Within seconds the teens had the blonde man on the ground in a tackle hug, unless thanks spewing from them.