Raven Boys, Circular Logic

Title: Circular Logic [Adam/Ronan]
Rating/Warnings: PG-13
Summary: The night after Ronan rescues Adam, Adam hates basically everything.
AN: I wrote Raven Boys!!! Spoilers for near the end of book 1, probably. Definitely, yeah.

Circular Logic

An hour of uninterrupted sleep feels like it would be a miracle, between Ronan’s fucking bird, Noah’s disconsolate banging on pipes, and Gansey’s sudden need to snore. None of those things are any of the three’s fault, but right now Adam hates every last one of them, hates everything. He hates Noah for being dead, he hates Gansey for having allergies, and he hates more than anything the way that Ronan is gentle enough to nurse a baby bird but strong enough to storm into Adam’s home like some avenging hero and knock Adam’s father down, flat on his back.

Ronan took away Adam’s home and saved him from it at the same time, and Adam can do nothing but curl up on his side, nauseous from fading painkillers and the way those two facts refuse to resolve themselves into a single thing that Adam can live with. He knows Ronan did it for him, but that just makes it worse. He’d told Ronan, he’d told all of them over and over, that he didn’t want to be saved.

Gansey does, maybe, and Noah apparently needs to be, but Adam can only be helplessly furious that now he’ll never have the chance to save himself.

It’s because you can’t be saved, a voice inside Adam whispers to him, a voice that Adam can’t shut out by rolling onto his side so that his good ear is pressed into the pillow.

The door pushes open, and Adam knows it’s Ronan even in the dark because Gansey is still snoring and Noah is too weak to push a door at the moment. Ronan pads over to the bed, Adam feeling the steps through the floor rather than hearing them, and leans over to say something.

Adam doesn’t bother to either roll away or to turn his head so his good ear is uncovered. “Go away. I’m not done hating you yet.”

He isn’t sure, because of the dark, but Adam thinks that makes Ronan smile, in that sharp fierce way he does when something is awful but amusing. It certainly doesn’t make him go away. Ronan crawls onto the bed, reaching out to turn the lamp on as if an afterthought, and Adam has to close his eyes against the glare of it. Ronan slithers inelegantly over him, making Adam feel every bruise on the way by, then settles on Adam’s other side, between him and the wall. Adam feels the hand firm on his shoulder, and lets himself be rolled over onto his back.

When he opens his eyes, Ronan is staring down at him, eyes intent but not full of any particular emotion, just interested. Taking everything in. Adam glares back, hating the strange mix of emotions that look always makes rise in his chest. Ronan’s hand comes up to trace the edges of the bruise on Adam’s cheek, fingertips pressing enough to be felt but not enough to hurt.

He catalogs Adam’s injuries this way, always has, after every incident when they have some time alone. Adam has never asked what Ronan finds so interesting about it, if it’s some sort of weird fetish, or if he’s just keeping a running tally. When Ronan’s hand drifts down to Adam’s collar, Adam lets him tug his shirt off, bonelessly cooperative, and push the blankets aside to keep touching the scrapes and bruises. It’s too hot for blankets with Ronan so close to him anyway.

Abruptly Adam realizes that these are the last injuries, that Ronan won’t have any reason to touch him in this way, after these injuries have healed. Like everything Ronan does, that thought is neither entirely good nor bad, and Adam is too tired and sick to figure it out.

Ronan says something, but he’s on the now-deaf side, so Adam can’t make it out. Reluctantly he turns his head, raising an eyebrow to get Ronan to repeat it.

“I’m not sorry,” is what he says, and Adam starts to laugh before the sharp pull in his ribs turns it into a wheeze. Of course he isn’t, fucking Ronan. “I’m not sorry that I—”

“God, shut up, I hate you.” Adam rolls back on his side because he just can’t, not now. The dubious comfort of Ronan as a human heating pad is not worth having to talk or think about any of it. He hunches in a ball and wills Ronan to go away with the power of his mind, and any normal person would.

Not Ronan. Ronan uses his hands, his stupid strong gentle warm violent hands, to unbunch Adam just a little, so he won’t be sore from it in the morning. Then he curls up along Adam’s back, too close but warm and smelling of smoke and grass and whatever godawful thing he’s feeding that bird and he stays until Adam is asleep.

Adam wishes, even though he knows it’s a useless wish, that things will be less stupid in the morning.

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