cosipotente: (horned)
cosipotente ([personal profile] cosipotente) wrote2013-12-04 07:55 am

edelweiss

PG ; Levi/Eren
summary: Levi delivers flowers to a house in mourning.
word count: 1,812
AU








The morning sun filters in through Eren's window. A warm sliver of light lands on his cheek and he rouses from his slumber. Groggily, Eren throws back his covers, wiping the sleep crust from his eyes before letting loose a loud yawn. He sits on the edge of his bed, stretching widely, and then gets up and makes his way to his window.

Eren pushes the curtains to their respective sides before lifting his window open. He leans out of it slightly and yawns, watching his breath curl in a soft plum of vapor The sun washes over his little town, sparkling off the dew covered rooftops and warming the cool autumn air. Eren hasn't been waking up every morning for the past month for the view though.

He has to squint his eyes, but he can definitely make out the shape flitting from roof to roof.

In the middle of last month, Eren's father suffered from a heart attack and died en route to the hospital. It was the worst day of Eren's life that was followed up by the worst week of his life. His house, during the wake, became a dark and bleak place to be. The bright curtains were replaced with black ones, black veils covered the mirrors, and even the doors were decorated in dried, blackened wreaths. The Jaeger home was silent with mourning.

It was oppressive, suffocating, and to escape it but still be close to home, Eren had taken to sitting on his roof. That was how he first met the figure steadily drawing closer to his house. After the funeral, Eren and Mikasa climbed out of his window and onto the roof; Eren crying in quiet sobs against his drawn up knees while Mikasa sat beside him, silent in her grief.

Something landed before them with soft thud and Eren lifted his head to find a courier from Titan Florals staring down at them. The guy's sloe-eyed gaze shifted from Mikasa and then to Eren, giving him a soft but unreadable look. He handed a rose to Mikasa from the bouquet in his delivery pack before letting his 3D gear propel forward; he was gone just as fast as he came.

A strange routine was borne out of that moment: the courier, Levi (it took four deliveries for Eren to learn his name) would drop a flower at Eren's window, whether he was there or not to greet him, any morning Levi had a stop in the area.

And Eren likes the routine. The brief encounters keep his mind busy when he's at home after finishing school and his part time job. He hides out on the roof, laying against the sun-warmed shingles, and he ponders on Levi. Eren muses about what the man is like outside of work, imagining him to be a tyrant in his professional and personal life. The daydreams make it easier to ignore his mother's red and swollen eyes, and the silence that permeates the house instead of the music that used to float out of his father's study.

Although they don't speak beyond Eren's sheepish thank you's, he enjoys the short time he gets to spend with Levi. Eren may, or may not, have a crush on the vertically challenged, sloe-eyed courier from Titan Florals—even if Levi is only dropping by to give flowers to Eren to give to Mikasa. He gets to monopolize Levi's time even if it's only for a minutes.

Eren sighs, eyes trailing Levi's figure as he stops at a house a few meters from his. He doesn't have a particular affinity for flowers, and the thought of receiving them makes him feel weird, but Eren wants to experience having Levi give him a flower actually meant for him and not his sister.

Yeah, right. Eren thinks, snorting derisively at himself.

"What's so funny?"

Eren jumps in place, smacking the top of his against the window sill. He had taken his eyes off Levi while he had been lost in thought, completely unaware the courier had landed before him on the terrace outside of his window. Eren rubs the throbbing spot on the crown of his head, lifting his eyes and slowly meeting Levi's cool gaze.

It's the first time Levi has actively talked to him and the words Eren wants to speak sit heavily on the back of his tongue. Despite his short stature, Levi still manages to look down his nose at Eren as he tries to get his voice to work.

"Nothing. Nothing is funny." Eren manages after a few beats of silence. His face warms with embarrassment as Levi raises a thin brow.

"Of course, only idiots laugh at nothing."

Eren''s face burns hotter, but he catches the slight upward tilt of Levi's mouth before his face settles once again into uninterested and unamused. Levi really is handsome. Flustered at his line of thinking, Eren tries to think of something to say that will keep Levi talking, keep him there before Eren.

"Good morning!" He's embarrassed that that is the best his mind can scramble together. His mom would be proud; she was always harping on him about his lack of manners. Eren wanted to punch himself in the face though, and if he could do it without being considered a lunatic, he would in a heartbeat.

Levi's eyes move from Eren's face to an area just right of his window. Mikasa's window. Disappointment settles heavy in his chest and Eren's mood deflates. It really was stupid of him to get excited about Levi bringing flowers—flowers meant for Mikasa. It's Levi's job to delivery them, there really isn't anything for Eren to get happy over.

A sunflower being shoved into his face interrupts the flow of Eren despairing thoughts.

"Good morning," Levi says, adjusting his 3D gear to take off. He gives Eren a cursory up and down look. "Idiot."

His gaze narrows, the sharpness of it making Eren swallow thickly. It's ridiculous how intimidating such a small person can be.

"What do you do with the flowers?" Levi asks; his tone implies he could care less.

Eren, confused, cocks his head slightly before answering. "I give them to my sister."

It's true. Every flower he gets from Levi he hands off to Mikasa. Eren still doesn't understand why Levi doesn't just stop before her window if he really wanted to give Mikasa flowers (Eren likes to think that beneath his icy exterior, the courier is shy), but Eren doesn't really mind being the middleman for them. He pretends the flowers are for him up until he gives them to Mikasa—who disposes of each flower she gets.

"Isn't that what you wanted me to do with them?"

Levi's face doesn't change, but Eren somehow gets the feeling he just said something stupid.

The courier snorts derisively. "You shitty brat." He takes a menacing step forward and Eren prides himself on not tumbling backwards despite how hard he flinches. A look crosses Levi's face like he's torn between striking Eren or himself.

His hand settles heavily on Eren head; their positions give Levi the height advantage. Eren blinks owlishly up at the older man.

"They were for you, you goddamn—" Levi cuts himself off. He pulls his hand away—much to Eren's disappointment—and heaves a put upon sigh.

Eren can only stand there in confusion, the top of his head warm where Levi's hand had rested. He tries to wrap his mind around what Levi just said. If the flowers were meant for him since the beginning, why had Levi given Mikasa the first one?

He doesn't realize he voiced the question until he notices the look Levi gives; a look that speaks volumes about Eren's simple-mindedness.

"I gave it to her because she looked like she wanted my head for just looking at you."

Eren gapes, stunned into silence. He wants to say so much but his tongue lays heavy in his mouth. He a makes few weird noises in the back of his throat but nothing else comes out.

"Idiot." Levi sighs, giving him another look before taking off. Eren clutches the stem of the sunflower, watching the courier fly through the air. He ducks back inside, feeling confused but mostly happy.

Eren closes his window and then stares down at the flower. A flower actually meant for him. He finds the feeling of having it to himself not as weird as he thought it would be. He smiles to himself, running his fingers over the soft yellow-orange petals.





It's a few days later that Levi drops by again. Eren is leaning out of his window, enjoying the way the warmth of the morning sun washes over his face when a large shadow flies over his head. He looks up to find Levi passing through the air above him.

Levi reaches a hand down, laying atop Eren's head a crown of small, white flowers. His fingertips card through Eren's for a brief second.

"Shitty brat." Levi says so only Eren can hear. The courier is gone the next moment, propelled forward by his wires to his next stop.

Eren's face burns from embarrassment just as much as it burns from happiness. His mother and Mikasa are on her terrace, hanging her bed sheets out to dry after being laundered. There's a stormy look on his sister's face, but Eren's mother is smiling. He hasn't seen her smile since before his father died.

He touches the flower crown, and he doesn't doubt for a second he is smiling like an idiot. His mom leans against the terrace railing, peering at the flowers.

"Edelweiss," she says, a soft look on her gaunt face. "Those are really special flowers. Come inside and I will tell you about them."

Eren's stomach bursts to life with butterflies at the thought of learning their meaning; learning what Levi could possibly be feeling for him.

He wears the crown until the flowers wilt.




Author Note: This is so terribly written... I had been working on it for two weeks, contentiously writing and then rewriting it. I gave up and smashed the ending out and this is what you get...

[the edelweiss, german for noble white, is a protected plant in many countries. it is a scarce, short-lived flower that grows in remote mountain areas at high altitudes. this flower, before it became illegal to do so, was picked by love-struck young men in order to show their bravery and the seriousness of their affection.]